Position Paper #2 Traditional Straight Chiropractic (TSC)


Traditional Straight Chiropractic is a term coined to differentiate two groups of chiropractors who both claim to be straight and who both model
their type of practice in some way after the philosophy developed by B.J. Palmer. Objective Straight Chiropractic takes the position that throughout the vast and diversified writings of B.J., the overall theme is that chiropractic is not medicine, it only corrects vertebral subluxations, and its ultimate objective is to enable the innate intelligence of the body to be better expressed. Every aspect of chiropractic practice is evaluated in light of these three concepts. The traditional straight chiropractor claims to follow the philosophy of B.J. Palmer. However he tends to be selective in which of B.J.’s writings he adheres to. For example, while B.J. did have diagnostic procedures done at the B.J. Palmer Chiropractic Clinic (by medical doctors), he always maintained that diagnosis was not a part of straight chiropractic. Traditional straight chiropractors diagnose and also do diagnostic tests. Most importantly, the traditional chiropractor ignores certain inconsistencies in B.J.’s writings and does not take into consideration the evolution of Palmer’s thinking over the years. Chiropractic philosophy can be and is an evolving process and did not stop evolving in 1961.
Some of B.J.’s writings are inconsistent with the three concepts as stated above. For example, B.J. defined chiropractic, in part, “by hand only.” Objective Straight Chiropractic defines it totally by objective and the technique used to meet that objective is not an issue. In general it can be said that the traditional straight adds to B.J.’s philosophy, while the objective straight chiropractor takes things away from B.J.’s philosophy. In the mind of the objective straight chiropractor, the former dilutes the philosophy and the latter makes it stronger, even stronger than when B.J. presented it. The idea of chiropractic getting sick people well or correcting the cause of disease has come to be a point of contention between chiropractic and medicine. The cause, cure, treatment and prevention of sickness and disease have always been the domain of the medical physician. Traditional straight chiropractic clearly trespasses into this domain when it discusses vertebral subluxation as the cause of disease and its correction as a prevention of disease. The confusion caused by two groups Objective Straight Chiropractic and Traditional Straight Chiropractic who both call themselves “straight” has necessitated this delineation. The traditional straight chiropractor does not fit the classic definition of a mixer although every day more and more move into that area of chiropractic practice. On the other hand, he is not a straight chiropractor in as much as he includes the medical objective in his practice and as the straight chiropractic philosophy evolves, he is being left further and further behind. To summarize the major differences between traditional and Objective Straight Chiropractic: 1. Traditional Straight Chiropractic embraces diagnosis either limited or full. Objective Straight Chiropractic does not. 2. Traditional Straight Chiropractic views chiropractic as an alternative or substitute for medicine. Objective Straight Chiropractic does not. 3. Traditional straight chiropractic discusses disease and its cause and relates the vertebral subluxation to them. Objective Straight Chiropractic does not. 4. Traditional Straight Chiropractic criticizes and attacks medical procedures. Objective Straight Chiropractic does not.

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This article has 4 comments

  1. Steve 06/16/2014, 1:22 pm:

    “and its ultimate objective is to enable the innate intelligence of the body to be better expressed.”If ii is always perfect and it’s expression (innate force) is always perfect, is it not the “mission” of ii that we are concerned with, as in trans-mission.
    I believe this too has been thoroughly discussed on this blog since the writing of this paper.

  2. RichieBDC 06/16/2014, 2:04 pm:

    The criticizing and attack of medical procedures is a tough one having been brought up that way Chiropractically……..We need to make people aware of what is illogical and harming but I know that is not my role as a NTOSC but it is ingrained in my being , very hard to break……..

    • Joe Strauss 06/17/2014, 6:53 pm:

      I empathize with you Richie, I came from that background also. I think we need to be able to separate the philosophy of medicine which has plenty of areas that need critical evaluation (as does our philosophy) and the objective of medicine(OI) and our objective (which every chiropractor has to settle in his own mind. The practice of medicine is not our business and how someone practices chiropractic does not need to be critiqued inasmuch as it is a personal matter, as long as it is legal (unless it is not consistent with the philosophy or the objective.) But once a person understands that, how they practice is their business, no ours.

      • Claude Lessard 06/19/2014, 8:46 pm:

        There seems to be misconceptions within the traditional camp about what we articulate as objective chiropractors. Those misconceptions occur when someone makes a statement and other people change that statement to make a counterpoint or forward their own agenda. –

        – Ex: Reggie once said: “You have heard it said that the “power that made the body… HEALS the body” and I say to you… “sometimes, not every time”. He went on to say that innate intelligence will adapt forces without breaking a universal law. Then, the next week, another chiropractor took Reggie’s statement and misquoted it in front of a different audience to make his point regarding the importance to have analytical criteria for pre-check and post-checks by stating: “Unlike Reggie Gold who stated that… CHIROPRACTIC WORKS sometimes, not every time”. This chiropractor went on to say that Reggie and his group maintain that it is not necessary to have pre and post check (which is not true) and is the reason why for Reggie et al that CHIROPRACTIC DOES NOT WORK all the time. The point that Reggie was making, was about innate intelligence adapting universal forces and e/matter without breaking a universal law and therefore, “the power that made the body heals the body… sometimes” and sometimes it doesn’t. –

        – You see, it is this kind of distorted non-sense which is an outright lie, in the example above, that promotes misconception and distrust. –

        – As long as people are addicted to their “own way of thinking”, they will influence others with their “will to power”. Unless we, in the objective camp, keep what I call… A BEGINNER’S MIND and, if without condemnation, we remain humble enough to stay open to the possibility to be proven wrong, the profession will continue to operate at the same level of thinking…what Joseph Strauss calls: “di-psycho”. This will, in fact, perpetuate the problems that we face today.

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