Steve Cannane took Scientology's line, says unrepentant 'Deep Sleep' doctor - 2020-06-02
On Saturday we told you that a trial was about to start in Australia that would never happen in the United States, and the first couple of days of testimony in the defamation case against journalist Steve Cannane certainly drove home that point.
In 2016, Cannane wrote Fair Game, a well researched and deftly written book about Scientology's history in Australia, including a strange chapter about how anti-psychiatry zealots in the church managed to blow the whistle on one of psychiatry's darkest episodes. It was the "deep sleep" scandal at Chelmsford Private Hospital near Sydney, and it made headlines in that country in the late 1980s. For years, a group of doctors had been putting patients under sedation and then subjecting them to electro-convulsive therapy, resulting in 24 deaths between 1963 and 1979.
Cannane included the chapter because it was a rare instance when Scientology was actually on the right side of things, but ultimately the young woman who risked the most to help bring the scandal to light was abandoned by her church handlers.