Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘Sociopath’

Privacy and Psychopaths – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on May 31, 2021

They are incredible chameleons, capable of shape-shifting and lying and faking in the extreme. They find human emotions puzzling and alien, since they cannot feel themselves, but they recognize that it drives humans and can be used to manipulate them—they simply must put on a face, read their lines, and with any luck they might convince someone that they have feelings too. “Astute observers,” Dr. Hare notes, “often get the impression that psychopaths are play-acting, mechanically ‘reading their lines.’”

By Gabriel Custodiet
The Watchman

Dear privacy-seekers,

Today we talk about psychopaths.

But, why are we talking about a personality disorder? And what does it have to do with privacy?

Years ago when I read my first book on psychopaths (which is the same as a sociopath) I was shocked and terrified and enlightened to discover their existence. At that very moment I was sharing a library with an inter-species predator that wore the face of humans and that saw them as means to an end: as prey. I was shocked to learn that many of the politicians who told me what to do and the CEOs who had ruthlessly etched their way into my life were psychopaths. It was, in short, a wake-up call. And if you want to understand how the world works, and have the faintest possibility of privacy and freedom, you need to know about psychopaths.

A psychopath or sociopath is someone who, for reasons of different brain chemistry, is incapable of experiencing empathy. That’s basically the full definition. But you would be surprised how completely and utterly a lack of empathy changes a creature. Without empathy you do not have a conscience. The author of The Sociopath Next Door Dr. Martha Stout puts it this way:

Conscience is a creator of meaning. As a sense of constraint rooted in our emotional ties to one another, it prevents life from devolving into nothing but a long and essentially boring game of attempted dominance over our fellow human beings, and for every limitation conscience imposes on us, it gives us a moment of connectedness with an other, a bridge to someone or something outside of our often meaningless schemes.

Empathy involves stepping outside of your own subjective experience to imagine what it is like to be someone else and experience their discomfort and pleasure. Think of Christ’s Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” and its variants across other religions. Think of the social contract. Think of the non-aggression principle, which says that you should not use force against another except in self-defense. All of these philosophies have in common the fact that you must be able to recognize other people as things in themselves. By contrast, expert Dr. Robert Hare notes, psychopaths have a “callous disregard for the rights of others.” Psychopaths literally cannot consider others as anything but objects. “The feelings of other people,” notes Hare, “are of no concern to psychopaths.”

Nor is this speculation. Ample interviews with psychopaths have evinced these facts, as have empirical measurements. Tests have been performed where people sit awaiting an electrical shock. Regular people have measurable anxiety, but psychopaths have none leading up to that moment. Other studies have found that psychopaths have no difference in neural response to emotional words compared to neutral words. Their brains are fundamentally and physically different from the rest of us by virtue of “altered processing of emotional stimuli at the level of the cerebral cortex.” (Stout) To put it in religious terms, a psychopath is a non-human creature in the guise of a human that is devoid of a soul.

Without the ability to step beyond one’s own experience, a number of things follow for the psychopath. Psychopaths cannot comprehend and plan for the future. They have very little imaginative capability at all. They live entirely in the moment and for pleasure. They are narcissistic and entirely self-absorbed. They have no commitment to others. They are more likely to take up extreme drug use, sexual promiscuity, childhood violence, and adult violence—to violate others. They are drawn to power and enjoy control.

Especially in our pro-“mental health” world you might be shocked by what I’ve just described. You might think that a psychopath is someone who is simply misguided or who does bad things now and then, if not evil—but surely they can be corrected or saved. Others will say that psychopaths must be seriously demented—at least the ones who take to violence. They must be totally disconnected from reality. None of this is true. A psychopath is biologically disposed to prey on others, nor are they psychiotic. They cannot be reasoned with, they cannot be treated, and they have nothing in common with you except a human face. Would you call a wolf evil, misguided, or think it in need of a cure for killing a deer?

Crucially, psychopaths are not psychotic. They’re not schizophrenic. They’re not bipolar. They see the world as it is. In fact, they see the world in some ways more clearly than normal humans because they carefully observe human emotion and behavior dispassionately.

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Sociopath vs. Psychopath: What’s the Difference?

Posted by M. C. on May 21, 2020

A handy resource for dealing with government.

…A key difference between a psychopath and a sociopath is whether he has a conscience, the little voice inside that lets us know when we’re doing something wrong, says L. Michael Tompkins, EdD. He’s a psychologist at the Sacramento County Mental Health Treatment Center.

A psychopath doesn’t have a conscience. If he lies to you so he can steal your money, he won’t feel any moral qualms, though he may pretend to. He may observe others and then act the way they do so he’s not “found out,” Tompkins says.

A sociopath typically has a conscience, but it’s weak. He may know that taking your money is wrong, and he might feel some guilt or remorse, but that won’t stop his behavior.

Both lack empathy, the ability to stand in someone else’s shoes and understand how they feel. But a psychopath has less regard for others, says Aaron Kipnis, PhD, author of The Midas Complex. Someone with this personality type sees others as objects he can use for his own benefit….

It’s not easy to spot a psychopath. They can be intelligent, charming, and good at mimicking emotions. They may pretend to be interested in you, but in reality, they probably don’t care.

“They’re skilled actors whose sole mission is to manipulate people for personal gain,” Tompkins says.

Sociopaths are less able to play along. They make it plain that they’re not interested in anyone but themselves. They often blame others and have excuses for their behavior….

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