How's this for armchair psychology. Addiction is a collapse of the ego. A collapse of the moral compass. A collapse of the conscience that helps us monitor our own behaviour. We are all looking at James Frey as a healthy individual. The first question to ask, “Is James Frey chemical free?” And even if he is, he has not done the real work to heal his ego. He obviously has no moral compass nor a conscience to monitor himself. The reason “AA” and other support organizations work is because they help rebuild the person that has been broken.
As a Bipolar Mood Disorder sufferer I feel actually sadness for James Frey. I can easily see the man is trying to cope with many demons. Its in his eyes. Sadly at the time he wrote his story he was not a healthy man. And maybe still is not. I am sure it is common knowledge that severe drug addicts have disassociations of reality. Often reality and fantasy blur and then commingle make each indistinguishable.
Beyond the story of literary ethics is the story of a man still out of control. He just happens to now have international fame and money. So I guess with noteriety and money he gets to be called the tragic artist. If he does not get help he will probably self-destruct.
And the good news is someone gets to write the James Frey scandal biography which will then become a bestseller.