There are monsters in our world. I had long
some people could be so mean to others. Humans are the only species
on its own kind. They exploited, raped, stole, and in general made
I had thought that perhaps it was greed gone wrong or the lust for
control. What I felt was that these ideas were not able to really
the terrible excesses we see around us. I began to write down
thought was wrong such people and then look for a resonance amongst
I found that I was way behind the curve. Folks had already described
folks in better ways than I could imagine. I had noted that they could
what they did to others, that they had an inordinate opinion of
they would use any means to gain what they wished. ....
Since I orginially assembled the report below I have found that medical science has progressed rapidly in identifying parts of the brain that relate to these conditions. I feel they have demolished the "nuture" arguments. Nuture can modify or lessen the effects but not orginate it.
What I found that I had begun to describe is what is known as a
The [psychopath] is unfamiliar with the primary facts or data of what
called personal values and is altogether incapable of understanding
matters. It is impossible for him to take even a slight interest in the
or joy or the striving of humanity as presented in serious literature
He is also indifferent to all these matters in life itself. Beauty and
except in a very superficial sense, goodness, evil, love, horror, and
have no actual meaning, no power to move him. He is, furthermore,
the ability to see that others are moved. It is as though he were
despite his sharp intelligence, to this aspect of human existence. It
explained to him because there is nothing in his orbit of awareness
bridge the gap with comparison. He can repeat the words and say glibly
understands, and there is no way for him to realize that he does not
(Cleckley, 1941, p. 90 quoted in Hare, 1993, pp. 27-28)." Dr. Robert
is a leading analyst of psychopaths. His test for determining the level
is considered the best there is.
"Psychopaths cannot be understood in terms of antisocial rearing or
development. They are simply morally depraved individuals who represent
"monsters" in our society. They are unstoppable and untreatable
predators whose violence is planned, purposeful and emotionless. The
continues until it reaches a plateau at age 50 or so, then tapers off.
ness reflects a detached, fearless, and possibly dissociated state,
low-state autonomic nervous system and lack of anxiety. It's difficult
to say what
motivates them - control and dominance possibly - since their life
usually show no long-standing bonds with others nor much rhyme to their
(other than the planning of violence). They tend to operate with a
demeanor, an attitude of entitlement, an insatiable appetite, and a
toward sadism. Fearlessness is probably the prototypical (core)
(the low-fear hypothesis). It's helpful to think of them as high-speed
with ineffective brakes. Certain organic (brain) disorders and hormonal
imbalances mimic the state of mind of a psychopath."
It is tragic, in a way, since the psychopath can not live life in the
the vast majority of folks do. Empathy is totally beyond him
except as an
intellectual exercise. Psychopaths live a sort of death or they are
really fully alive. This may be one reason they often express their
needs in an
extreme manner to fill the inner emptiness. Consumerism is
in a similar way. It has been said that a psychopath can fool
Only dumb psychopaths wind up in jail. Because of their limited
many fail to be able to control impulses which gets them in trouble.
can be found anywhere. They can be charming, have charisma, be
not give a damn about anyone. Originally one definition was "insanity
without delirium to describe behavior that was marked by complete
remorselessness". In prisons it was found that psychopaths used the
sessions to expand their repertoire to manipulate folks.
does not help psychopaths.” because they see no need to change their
personalities ". As measured in "psychopaths who underwent
social-skills and anger-management training before release had an 82
reconviction rate. Psychopaths who didn't take the program had a 59
reconviction rate.". They have a cold way in that "In animals such as
dogs, who bare their throats when attacked by a stronger opponent, a
such submission cues results in a termination of the attack. by
communications of distress. This mechanism is said to be a prerequisite
development of three aspects of morality: the moral emotions (such as
guilt, remorse and empathy), the inhibition of violent action and the
moral/conventional distinction. Blair has suggested that psychopaths
functional VIM and could not be negatively reinforced by distress cues
further predicted ‘(1) that psychopaths will not make a distinction
moral and conventional rules; (2) that psychopaths will treat moral
rules as if
they were conventional; that is, under permission conditions, the
will say that moral as well as conventional transgressions are OK to
that psychopaths will be less likely to make references to the pain or
discomfort of victims than the non-psychopath controls’ "
There are some physical aspects that been noted in the brain but this
is very unclear.
To me they are the very definition of evil. As in "Evil is best
as privation, as the absence of an appreciation for the goodness of the
and for the full humanity of all the creatures in the world." ---Andrew
Dr. Robert Hare has done insightful work that simply shows their
responses. In a study "Hare had his subjects watch a countdown
timer. When it reached zero, they got a "harmless but painful"
electric shock while an electrode taped to their fingers measured
Normal people would start sweating as the countdown proceeded,
anticipating the shock. Psychopaths didn't sweat. They didn't fear
-- which, presumably, also holds true outside the laboratory." and in
"In another Hare study, groups of letters were flashed to volunteers.
of them were nonsense, some formed real words. The subject's job was to
button whenever he recognized a real word, while Hare recorded response
and brain activity. Non-psychopaths respond faster and display more
activity when processing emotionally loaded words such as "rape" or
"cancer" than when they see neutral words such as "tree."
With psychopaths, Hare found no difference. To them, "rape" and
"tree" have the same emotional impact -- none. "
That can do great harm. "They exhibit a cluster of distinctive
traits, the most significant of which is an utter lack of conscience.
have huge egos, short tempers, and an appetite for excitement -- a
mix" especially when they have the resources "There are wealthy
psychopaths who've done horrendous things, and they were brought up in
wonderful families." and "The Psychopath is much more
successful than you and I because he is not hemmed in by all sorts of
Dr Hare did much of his work in prisons however "Hare has said that if
couldn't study psychopaths in prisons, the Vancouver Stock Exchange
been his second choice.". It is important to note they live everywhere.
"less intelligent psychopaths end up in prisons (highly intelligent
psychopaths can run companies)"
Because they don't have the normal limits to behavior they can be
accomplish things but always for their own ends ""They have
traits similar to ideal leaders. You would expect an ideal leader to be
narcissistic, self-centred, dominant, very assertive, maybe to the
being aggressive. Those things can easily be mistaken for the
bullying that a psychopath would demonstrate. The ability to get people
follow you is a leadership trait, but being charismatic to the point of
manipulating people is a psychopathic trait. They can sometimes be
confused." Of course you don't to be high on the food chain
""A lot of white-collar criminals are psychopaths," says Bob
Hare. "But they flourish because the characteristics that define the
disorder are actually valued. When they get caught, what happens? A
slap on the
wrist, a six-month ban from trading, and don't give us the $100 million
I've always looked at white-collar crime as being as bad or worse than
the physically violent crimes that are committed."
My own opinion is that saints are as diseased as psychopaths. " True
saints, completely selfless individuals, are rare and unnatural too, he
out, but we don't talk about their being diseased. " Only because their
disease benefits us.
The psychopath is sexy since "any women fall for male psychopaths and
men fall for psychopathic women and why is that so? That's the same
The psychopath has no inhibitions therefore he can play up to achieve
sexual aims without any inhibitions. He will talk to a woman who is
in poetry about poetry. He doesn't care about poetry but he will quote
and even sexually he will be better because his sexual life is
healthy. Normal sexual life is so complicated, so full of strange ideas
obsessions and desires….it's one of the most complicated things in life
many ways shows some of the most perverse things. The only sexually
or woman is a psychopath, sexuality just functions, and a man
psychopath and a
woman psychopath -they can make love to anybody, anytime, anyplace,
matter, because it's just going, there is no inhibition of any kind.
they are so good at making money -they can make love to an 80 yr old
doesn't matter, they can do it, no inhibitions."
They can be leaders "The psychopath's need for followers and power is
dangerous, because, combined with their hypnotizing charm and social
(antisocials are not really reclusive, as some people mistakely
often become cult leaders and gurus, dictators and tyrants (petty
that matter), whether within a small circle of friends,"
They are not aware of how they are different. "Although he deliberately
cheats others and is quite conscious of his lies, he appears unable to
distinguish adequately between his own pseudointentions, pseudoremorse,
pseudolove, and the genuine responses of a normal person. His
of insight indicates how little he appreciates the nature of his
Some fell that a psychopaths behavior is motivated by a "unrecognized
toward the negations of nonexistence." or "The activity of the
psychopath may seem in some respects to accomplish a kind of protracted
elaborate social and spiritual suicide. Perhaps the complex, sustained,
spectacular undoing of the self may be cherished by him. He seldom
physical suicide to interrupt it."
I have come to partially agree with "Increasingly I have come to
that some subtle and profound defect in the human organism, probably
not hereditary, plays the chief role in the psychopath's puzzling and
spectacular failure to experience life normally and to carry on a
acceptable to society. This, too, is still a speculative concept and is
supported by demonstrable evidence". I am more ready to accept a pure
probably recessive, reason..
capitalism. ...it abounds everywhere.
The only way around this is to apply a test requiring empathy from our
I feel that psychopaths are so different from normal folks as to
separate species. Research could be done to see what can be done but in
interim probably isolation is the only answer.