The president of the private group Texas Psychological Association has just filed suit against the Texas psychology board, seeking a temporary restraining order to stop the board from moving forward with new rules which would have the effect of promoting more free enterprise in the area of psychology.
The plaintiff, TPA president Dr. Carol Grothues, wants to stop this good effort. The reason? Aside from trivial (in my view) procedural complaints, the law suit contends the rules would be bad for business for licensed psychologists because they would lower the price for services and increase competition by increasing the number of service providers.
“You can’t make this stuff up,” is a phrase that fits here.
This is the most remarkable law suit I have seen in the anti-trust area: A cartel suing the government because the government is limiting the power of the cartel.
One of the new rules would allow masters-degreed psychologists to practice psychology independently, without having to pay money to and be “supervised” by a doctoral-level psychologist. I consider this practice to be a “protection fee,” in essence, and at a minimum an anti-trust violation. But the psychology board is proposing to do away with it, which is good. Dr. Grothues is suing to put a stop to this good development.
I consider this a very good development for all helping professions because it shows the public how far the psychology cartel will go, including against “its own” state agency. At a minimum I believe the law suit will diminish the power of these professional organizations over state government.