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(Telegraph)   Embrace your inner sociopath for a better life for all. Well, no. But for you, sure   (blogs.telegraph.co.uk) divider line 129
    More: Scary, Patrick Bateman, Make It, silent majority, sociopaths  
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10455 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Jun 2013 at 3:04 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-06-12 04:39:31 PM  
Could a sociopath pass a voit kampff test?
 
2013-06-12 04:42:38 PM  

dopekitty74: If you think you MIGHT be a bit sociopathic, but feel vaguely guilty about it, what does that make you?


I read a psychiatrist once, and I can't remember his name, unfortunately, who described what he called the "psychodynamic" model of psychopathy/sociopathy. Of all the reading I've done, I personally liked his approach the best.

Both Hare's checklist and the DSM employ very behaviorist approaches. That is, they're concerned with more with outward actions, and less with internal operations. Hare's and the DSM's approaches care that you've robbed a convenience store. They're less interested in why you robbed the convenience store, and whether or not you felt remorse for it.

There's a lot of merit to that approach, because for a large part it's pretty objective. Either you have a criminal history, or you don't. Either you pay your bills or you don't, etc.

APD does have "lack of remorse" as a diagnostic criteria. But it's only one. So someone who otherwise meets the diagnostic criteria, but experiences real remorse can still be APD. And it treats "rationalizing" and "being indifferent to" harm you've done identically.

In the psychodymanic approach, "indifference" forms the real core of psychopathy. It limits use of the word "psychopath" to those who lack the neural mechanisms for empathy and conscience. Someone who rationalizes wrongdoing does so because he has an emotional need to. That need comes from something conscience-like in him.

Three candidates for a psychopathy diagnosis rob a gas station.

The first robs it because he wants to buy a new PS4. He doesn't care if it hurt anyone.

The second robs it because he's addicted to drugs and out of cash to buy them. He tells himself that the gas station is owned by rich people who won't really be hurt.

The third guy is a Jew living in Nazi Germany. He robs the gas station to get money to smuggle his family to safety. He regrets hurting the owners, but his fear for his and his family's safety drives him to do it anyway.

Behaviorism treats all three of these guys' bank robberies identically. But clearly, different personality structures motivate each of them.

Does the third guy really have anything psychologically in common with the other two? Once he's safely in the United States, is there any reason to believe he's a danger to society at all?

The junky's body tells him he needs a fix. His addiction overpowers his sense of right and wrong. How do we know he has a sense of right and wrong? Because he has to make up an excuse to justify to himself why robbing the place is okay. We might be able to reform this guy if we can break his addictive behavior patterns, and get him to see through his smokescreen of rationalizations.

The third guy isn't driven by any overpowering need. He's just greedy. And he doesn't have to justify his actions to himself at all. Can someone who doesn't care at all about right and wrong ever safely interact with society?

But the psychodynamic approach is much harder to apply than the behaviorist approaches. To have any hope of applying it accurately requires a very thorough knowledge of someone's personality and background. It may take years of examination for a clinician to determine whether a candidate for diagnosis has a real conscience, or is just faking one. Even then, the best trained professional with the best background knowledge can still be fooled sometimes.

So for most purposes, we stick to the behaviorist models. Which is probably for the best, as long as we recognize their limitations.
 
2013-06-12 04:44:56 PM  
No no no no no.

Look, think of it like clinical depression. We all get depressed, sad, etc. but that is a light shade of grey to the clinical depression's black.

We're all a little [insert personality disorder here]. That's why anyone taking Psych 101 suddenly starts armchairing everyone, including themselves. You can see the *shades* of everything in almost everyone.

Sociopaths do not feel the emotion called 'remorse' period. They can feel a very vague shade of it when related to themselves or something they've attached as extension of self (family).

All the rest of humanity has done something to someone not a close friend or family member that was flat out hurtful or wrong, and we feel really super shiatty about after the fact internally. Not because of how we're perceived by others. Not because of the impact to us. But because we experience empathy.

There's other characteristics, but all of them can be extended to things we normally do. We all tend to think of ourselves as smarter than we are, it's a very human illusion. All of us can be a wee bit egotistical. Blah de blah blah blah. A sociopath keeps going down the checklist on the extreme end of it.

Again, difference between feeling a little blue today, and depression.

Hope that helps.

/not a sociopath, though like all people sometimes wishes
 
2013-06-12 04:47:08 PM  

Honest Bender: Could a sociopath pass a voit kampff test?


Could you?
www.technovelgy.com
Re-reading this right now. At the first test Decker gave....he really wants that owl.
 
2013-06-12 04:48:30 PM  
I called this one a couple of months ago, but I can't find the post now. Color me utterly unsurprised.
 
2013-06-12 04:51:12 PM  

studs up: Honest Bender: Could a sociopath pass a voit kampff test?

Could you?
[www.technovelgy.com image 400x283]
Re-reading this right now. At the first test Decker gave....he really wants that owl.


Deckard dammit
 
2013-06-12 04:52:53 PM  

Decillion: AGremlin: Decillion: AGremlin: Sociopath is thrown around so much today it has virtually lost all meaning.  It used to be and should be a clinical diagnosis.

Definition is now: People who do things you don't like or agree with.

I disagree. It's given out too easily but still attached to people with no regard for anyone else. However these are mostly assholes. Not actual sociopaths.

I read your response multiple times and can only conclude that you agree with me.

And possibly don't understand the meaning of disagree.

Your definition is wrong. Nobody labels someone a sociopath because they 'do things you don't like or agree with'.  They think other things of these people. Ass, idiot, etc. but not sociopath.


You don't read too many FARK threads, do you?  I see sociopath thrown around by many "pop psychologists" in these threads.

My point is people use the term wrong all the time.  They equate asshole with sociopath on a regular basis.  As someone further up-thread said, it is something that can only be diagnosed by a mental health professional, whether the new term Antisocial Personality Disorder or the old term sociopath is used.

Boy, it's getting really hard to agree with you.
 
2013-06-12 04:58:38 PM  

freewill: dopekitty74: If you think you MIGHT be a bit sociopathic, but feel vaguely guilty about it, what does that make you?

A regular old asshole.

I recently finally rid myself of a part-time personal assistant who I'm pretty sure is an undiagnosed sociopath, but may also just be an asshole. During the course of her employment, I discovered that she's been diagnosed as bipolar, borderline, and a few other things during the course of years of treatment. She also saw no problem with mentioning cursing at a judge, contaminating an ex-boyfriend's food, stealing his credit card to acquire an adequate birthday present, and, when she learned that someone had stolen $16,000 from a family member, said that since they gave it back when they got caught, it wasn't really stealing.

Her last three boyfriends were convicted felons because she "doesn't see eye to eye" with "good guys", which I interpreted as "non-criminals". At one point, she also indicated that she doesn't understand the idea of looking back on yourself as a teenager and realizing that you made a mistake because you didn't know something that you know now, that she's never felt that way.

She finally made up a face-saving excuse to quit after she went on an extended crying jag in front of me because a parent was trying to "control her" by telling her she needed to start thinking about getting a full-time job, which she described as "being obsessed with money". This, at age 30.

You can hardly imagine how relieved I am to be rid of her and to have all my passwords changed.


Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.
 
2013-06-12 05:01:11 PM  

Lady Indica: No no no no no.

Look, think of it like clinical depression. We all get depressed, sad, etc. but that is a light shade of grey to the clinical depression's black.

We're all a little [insert personality disorder here]. That's why anyone taking Psych 101 suddenly starts armchairing everyone, including themselves. You can see the *shades* of everything in almost everyone.

Sociopaths do not feel the emotion called 'remorse' period. They can feel a very vague shade of it when related to themselves or something they've attached as extension of self (family).

All the rest of humanity has done something to someone not a close friend or family member that was flat out hurtful or wrong, and we feel really super shiatty about after the fact internally. Not because of how we're perceived by others. Not because of the impact to us. But because we experience empathy.

There's other characteristics, but all of them can be extended to things we normally do. We all tend to think of ourselves as smarter than we are, it's a very human illusion. All of us can be a wee bit egotistical. Blah de blah blah blah. A sociopath keeps going down the checklist on the extreme end of it.

Again, difference between feeling a little blue today, and depression.

Hope that helps.

/not a sociopath, though like all people sometimes wishes


^Very much this.

Apart from the bit about sometimes wishing to be a sociopath:)
 
2013-06-12 05:03:00 PM  

gglibertine: I called this one a couple of months ago, but I can't find the post now. Color me utterly unsurprised.


You predicted someone would link an article about sociopaths? I am whelmed.
 
2013-06-12 05:03:12 PM  

shortymac: Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.


People who think this scare the crap out of me. Much like the people who think that without the fear of god, everyone would just run around raping and murdering and stealing like crazy. It suggests to me that you actually feel the desire to do these things, and only don't because you've been trained not to.

/And I did, I totally called it. Do I win a prize?
 
2013-06-12 05:04:39 PM  

AGremlin: You implied that the term sociopath had never been a clinical diagnosis, it was in DSM III-R. The DSM is used extensively in the U.S. by mental health professionals. As I said, DSM IV uses the term Antisocial Personality Disorder.

Not sure what terminology DSM V uses.

And I'm not sure your point.


I didn't "imply" it. I stated it outright. And my point was that you were wrong. If what you've said is true, then it looks like I was wrong. If so, then "oops."

I've found one or two non-authoritative citations supporting your claim. I can't find an online copy of the DSM III-r to verify it though.
 
2013-06-12 05:07:44 PM  

bugontherug: AGremlin: You implied that the term sociopath had never been a clinical diagnosis, it was in DSM III-R. The DSM is used extensively in the U.S. by mental health professionals. As I said, DSM IV uses the term Antisocial Personality Disorder.

Not sure what terminology DSM V uses.

And I'm not sure your point.

I didn't "imply" it. I stated it outright. And my point was that you were wrong. If what you've said is true, then it looks like I was wrong. If so, then "oops."

I've found one or two non-authoritative citations supporting your claim. I can't find an online copy of the DSM III-r to verify it though.


I think it was too, but I'm going on memory. Not that it matters, it was also misused by many professionals too.
 
2013-06-12 05:11:09 PM  
Had a sociopathic boss for a few years. Sucked, but once I had him pegged he knew well enough to pick on other people.

My guess is that there are a lot of sociopathic middle managers. Their disorder helps them claw up to that first level of power, but keeps them from rising much higher. Their 24/7 assholery probably tends to get them in enough minor scrapes that they get passed over for promotions.
 
2013-06-12 05:11:18 PM  
My view of morality is instrumental. I abide by conventional dictates when it suits me, and otherwise, I follow my own course with little need for justification.

biatch is chaotic evil.
 
2013-06-12 05:11:53 PM  

bugontherug: AGremlin: You implied that the term sociopath had never been a clinical diagnosis, it was in DSM III-R. The DSM is used extensively in the U.S. by mental health professionals. As I said, DSM IV uses the term Antisocial Personality Disorder.

Not sure what terminology DSM V uses.

And I'm not sure your point.

I didn't "imply" it. I stated it outright. And my point was that you were wrong. If what you've said is true, then it looks like I was wrong. If so, then "oops."

I've found one or two non-authoritative citations supporting your claim. I can't find an online copy of the DSM III-r to verify it though.


If I find my old copy, I'll scan it and post.

I was trying to be nice....but yes you stated an incorrect fact without research.  Oops indeed.
 
2013-06-12 05:19:50 PM  

punkhippie: Had a sociopathic boss for a few years. Sucked, but once I had him pegged he knew well enough to pick on other people.

My guess is that there are a lot of sociopathic middle managers. Their disorder helps them claw up to that first level of power, but keeps them from rising much higher. Their 24/7 assholery probably tends to get them in enough minor scrapes that they get passed over for promotions.


Some of them open up their own companies and do very well...for themselves. You can usually tell if the company has a high turn over rate regardless of incentives (compensation). The dumb part is, they could make a lot more money if they weren't sociopaths and kept the talent. Less work and more money but less fuggin' with peoples lives. Guess which one they pick?
 
2013-06-12 05:20:35 PM  

gglibertine: shortymac: Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.

People who think this scare the crap out of me. Much like the people who think that without the fear of god, everyone would just run around raping and murdering and stealing like crazy. It suggests to me that you actually feel the desire to do these things, and only don't because you've been trained not to.

/And I did, I totally called it. Do I win a prize?


Have you seen some of the shiat kids do and say to one another? How mercilessly they'll tease and beat up the "weird" kid?

Did you see what those kids did to that old bus monitor lady?

The vast majority of living people go not give a shiat about the world around them except for societal expectations and their comfort.

Remember, we're all just hairless apes.
 
2013-06-12 05:24:08 PM  
Yeah. Sociopath =\= psychopath article writer. Thank you for not clearing that up.

Could still do without either of them just fine.
 
2013-06-12 05:25:02 PM  
Lady Indica:

For those of us still trying to figure out whether we are on some spectrum of sociopathy or just not as nice/social as society wants us to be, your post is intriguing.  However, the extent of your insight into the sociopathic mind belies your assertion that they are alien to you, meaning you can't be as nice/normal as you imagine yourself to be.

You cannot use the tools of shame or guilt.

You point out that these critters may feel something like shame when disappointed at having violated their own personal code.  Why then could you not use that phenomenon to manipulate them?  Wait ...
 
2013-06-12 05:31:32 PM  

dopekitty74: If you think you MIGHT be a bit sociopathic, but feel vaguely guilty about it, what does that make you?


Normal? I hope.

//I'm the same.
 
2013-06-12 05:31:52 PM  
shortymac: Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.

I hired her as a favor to a friend to try to get her on her feet. We're only now figuring out the context for some of the things that happened with her in the path, and I would love to think that this can be "untaught", but even at 16, there was reluctance to give her a driver's license because when she was warned that she nearly ran over a group of people, she said something like "if they don't get out of the way, that's their problem". I do believe she might have been enabled throughout childhood, but I also think there's something deeper that's wrong with her.

I think that she quit not because she is embarrassed by the breakdown, but because she realized that I couldn't be manipulated by her crying (she appeared to capable of turning the tears on and off as the subject changed) and because I insisted that her parent (my friend) is being entirely reasonable and reminded her that I knew some of the things she was saying to be factually untrue, giving her enough breathing room to avoid an argument by framing it as a misunderstanding rather than a lie on her part. Now *we* clearly don't "see eye to eye" either, so she can't be around me anymore. Anyone who she can't manipulate is cast aside with remarkable speed, and she has expressed a general hatred for "people", as near as I can tell, because most people react badly to the way she acts.

We're only now figuring out just how damaged she is. Unfortunately, she doesn't want help or view her situation as a problem. She has no real work history, no education, and seems to be systematically manipulating her therapists with elaborate stories which utterly renounce any form of culpability for her own situation. Based on some things she said during her crying fit, she seems to interpret getting through life by manipulating a few bucks out of the poor slobs she can con into taking her in as victory over all the terrible people who expect her to do things that inconvenience her and want her to have a better life.

Girl ain't right.
 
2013-06-12 05:35:19 PM  

shortymac: gglibertine: shortymac: Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.

People who think this scare the crap out of me. Much like the people who think that without the fear of god, everyone would just run around raping and murdering and stealing like crazy. It suggests to me that you actually feel the desire to do these things, and only don't because you've been trained not to.

/And I did, I totally called it. Do I win a prize?

Have you seen some of the shiat kids do and say to one another? How mercilessly they'll tease and beat up the "weird" kid?

Did you see what those kids did to that old bus monitor lady?

The vast majority of living people go not give a shiat about the world around them except for societal expectations and their comfort.

Remember, we're all just hairless apes.


Like apes, we're highly social animals. The bad behavior you're talking about isn't sociopathic. Those are pretty typical group-building exercises.

A sociopath might play along in these group behaviors but has no need of them except as cover. The sociopath is the who more or less secretly looks down on the group from within.
 
2013-06-12 05:37:41 PM  

AGremlin: bugontherug: AGremlin: You implied that the term sociopath had never been a clinical diagnosis, it was in DSM III-R. The DSM is used extensively in the U.S. by mental health professionals. As I said, DSM IV uses the term Antisocial Personality Disorder.

Not sure what terminology DSM V uses.

And I'm not sure your point.

I didn't "imply" it. I stated it outright. And my point was that you were wrong. If what you've said is true, then it looks like I was wrong. If so, then "oops."

I've found one or two non-authoritative citations supporting your claim. I can't find an online copy of the DSM III-r to verify it though.

If I find my old copy, I'll scan it and post.

I was trying to be nice....but yes you stated an incorrect fact without research.  Oops indeed.


Not until you prove it. And logging on as an alt to support your claim with someone claiming a "vague memory" doesn't count. You still haven't even provided a citation to any source claiming the diagnosis of "sociopath" existed in the DSM III-R.

Now, here is a link to some DSM III-R pages. The top one is a list of accepted DSM III-R codes. I've examined all 9 pages of them. They do not contain a diagnosis of "sociopath." They do, however, contain diagnoses of APD, NPD, and and BPD--the very same diagnostic criteria as exist in the DSM-IV.

It would be quite a surprise if they changed the diagnosis of "sociopath" to APD, an already existing disorder, as you claim.

I do believe you're wrong, and I'm right. I stand by my proposition, now supported by citation.
 I stated you were wrong based on lots of research done before today. And the best evidence before us supports me, not you.


So, let's see that scan of yours.
 
2013-06-12 05:39:23 PM  
I've been scorched by Krusty before. I got a rapid heartbeat from his Krusty brand vitamins, my Krusty Kalculator didn't have a seven or an eight, and Krusty's autobiography was self-serving with many glaring omissions. But this time, he's gone too far! -- Bart, ``Kamp Krusty''

Sociopathy may have some survival value in chaotic, violent times and places, so it is probably preserved at low levels by the interplay of various forces, evolutionary, biological, social, political, economic, etc.

Societies have always been used by and have used sociopaths, particularly in military and poltiical situations where a normally constituted person would be hesitant or ineffective.

But society is ultimately built on trust and trustworthiness. Conservatives have their own system of trust--where who you are matters more than mere competence and in-groups and out-groups are more sharply defined. Liberals tend towards a more open system where more lose and abstract rules are more important and are thus more liable to trust out-groups more and embrace rather than exclude variety and diversity of various forms.

But where you are hawk or dove, grudge-holder or forgiver, aggressive or passive, sociopaths violate the very fundamental basis of trust--they can not be trusted--they have no internalized societal or innate evolved compassion, empathy, or sympathy for any other person, not even their closest kin and allies.

No liberal really sympathizes with this sort of amoral ruthlessness, nor does any conservative. The sociopath is pathetic, which is to say sick, from the Greek pathos, disease. Even if you have no absolutist or fixed system of moral values, the sociopath simply has no moral values or even pity or fellow-feeling.

The true sociopath enjoys harming others and has no reason to refrain from harming others. They can be socialized (learn the rules, play by the rules as long as they please or as long as necessary) but in the end, there is something totally missing.

It's not a problem that should be framed in terms of "ethics" or "morality., not a problem that can be framed in terms of "lack of guilt or remorse". A totally ethically person could in principle be remorseless, as remorseless and guilt free as a saint or angel doing God's will so that does not distinguish an angel from a devil. A totally gentle and kindly person can live without remorse or guilt and do good.

But a sociopath can do good, talk a good game, look as innocent as a flower, and be the serpent under it.

There's no check and balance there at all, however, and they can do heinous evil, talk pure lies, and be worse than any poisonous think the next moment.

This sociopath's memoirs are just as full of glaring omission and self-service as the memoirs of that other sociopath-tending person, Krusty the Klown.

She writes:

My view of morality is instrumental. I abide by conventional dictates when it suits me, and otherwise, I follow my own course with little need for justification.

Precisely. When it suits her, she can be nice or "moral". When it doesn't, she can do things that would make a great sinner blush and a devil flee. There is no system of checks, except convenience and her own pleasure. She might not chew your head off if she doesn't like the taste, or she is afraid of breaking a tooth.

The fact that ethics and morality have many grey areas does not mean that they are invalid attempts, any more than the vagueness and contradictions of scientific positions mean that Science is Bunkum. It's not the same thing to be immoral and to be amoral. An immoral or moral man might kill you for the wrong reason, or despite knowing that he shouldn't, but a machine will kill you without thought, feeling, or reason. It will kill you because you are there. And so will a sociopath.

Her arguments are designed to mislead you and to rationalize her disease. And to some extent, so are the author's arguments regarding the acceptability of this disease.

The author of this article is apparently a conservative in that he is blaming liberals for something that is not peculiar to liberals and which is not solely the fault of liberals (conservatives are just as easily manipulated by sociopaths, which is why so many sociopaths are posing as conservatives--it's fun and easy to mislead conservatives because they are creatures who fear the Other). And his five point plan for normalizing sociopathy (and homosexuality, allegedly) is exactly the same rhetorical progress used by religious and political conservatives to normalize their beliefs.

1. 1.5 billion Muslims can't be wrong!
2. If I'm wrong about the existence of God, no harm done, but if you're wrong about the non-existence of God, you're going to my Roman Catholic God's Hell, guy. So why not join the winning team (Pascal's Wager).
3. I'm a fanatic and a racist bigot am I? You liberals are the real fanatics and racist bigot!
4. All the cool kids are Scientologists! Don't you really want to be a scientologist, too? Here's Tarintino, Chef from South Park, and our trained dwarf to convince you!
5. Join us, Father! It's bliss!

Because I am a liberal I chose not to pick on one religion in particular, and I don't need to, because they ALL do this, ALL political parties do this, we all do this a little but not necessary a lot because we're not very rational and logical a species of monkey. The missing link between apes and rational humanity is yet to be born.

I've been scorched by more than one type of Krusty the Klown before. I read about half of Richard M. Nixon's voluminous autobiography and I believe implicitly that Krusty the Klown's autobiography was either modeled on it or simply is an autobiography, and that they are all apologia pro vita sua in the same way, which is to say that all autobiographies are works of fiction and belong in the fiction section of bookstores.
 
2013-06-12 05:40:28 PM  

freewill: shortymac: Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.

I hired her as a favor to a friend to try to get her on her feet. We're only now figuring out the context for some of the things that happened with her in the path, and I would love to think that this can be "untaught", but even at 16, there was reluctance to give her a driver's license because when she was warned that she nearly ran over a group of people, she said something like "if they don't get out of the way, that's their problem". I do believe she might have been enabled throughout childhood, but I also think there's something deeper that's wrong with her.

I think that she quit not because she is embarrassed by the breakdown, but because she realized that I couldn't be manipulated by her crying (she appeared to capable of turning the tears on and off as the subject changed) and because I insisted that her parent (my friend) is being entirely reasonable and reminded her that I knew some of the things she was saying to be factually untrue, giving her enough breathing room to avoid an argument by framing it as a misunderstanding rather than a lie on her part. Now *we* clearly don't "see eye to eye" either, so she can't be around me anymore. Anyone who she can't manipulate is cast aside with remarkable speed, and she has expressed a general hatred for "people", as near as I can tell, because most people react badly to the way she acts.

We're only now figuring out just how damaged she is. Unfortunately, she doesn't want help or view her situation as a problem. She has no real work history, no education, and seems to be systematically manipulating her therapists with elaborate stories which utterly renounce any form of culpability for her own situation. Based on some things she said during her crying fit, she seems to interpret getting through life by manipulating a few bucks out of the poor slobs she can con into ...


Here's a question, was her Father:

-Never Around
-Or an Authoritarian Asshat who was always right no matter what
 
2013-06-12 05:44:30 PM  
I've met plenty of people who would outright tell you that they'd rather watch ten thousand kittens be tortured and killed one by one rather than having a single penny of their paycheck be taken out to save them all.  They'd probably try to make up excuses but the fact of the matter is they just don't care.  America is full of them.  If you told everyone that 10% of their paycheck would ensure free high quality health care for everyone in America, they'd still reject it, even though they probably already spend 30% of their paycheck on shiatty healthcare...they could reduce that to 10% and everyone would be taken care of, but they'd rather pay MORE just to see other people suffer.
 
2013-06-12 05:44:42 PM  
I wonder where solpisism would fall. If you truly don't believe that anything you perceive is actually real then why would you ever constrain your actions according to arbitrary rules?
 
2013-06-12 05:49:30 PM  
There may be people who are inherent sociopaths, but can someone temporarily be a sociopath? I probably would have fit the criteria when I was younger, but I have mellowed out a lot in recent years.
 
2013-06-12 05:53:50 PM  

Walter Paisley: There may be people who are inherent sociopaths, but can someone temporarily be a sociopath? I probably would have fit the criteria when I was younger, but I have mellowed out a lot in recent years.


In response to this and freewill above ("Girl ain't right" story): I don't think you can tell with teenagers. They're going through so much shiat, and going through it so farking poorly, that you can't make any judgements about what their real character is like.
 
2013-06-12 05:55:44 PM  

bugontherug: AGremlin: bugontherug: AGremlin: You implied that the term sociopath had never been a clinical diagnosis, it was in DSM III-R. The DSM is used extensively in the U.S. by mental health professionals. As I said, DSM IV uses the term Antisocial Personality Disorder.

Not sure what terminology DSM V uses.

And I'm not sure your point.

I didn't "imply" it. I stated it outright. And my point was that you were wrong. If what you've said is true, then it looks like I was wrong. If so, then "oops."

I've found one or two non-authoritative citations supporting your claim. I can't find an online copy of the DSM III-r to verify it though.

If I find my old copy, I'll scan it and post.

I was trying to be nice....but yes you stated an incorrect fact without research.  Oops indeed.

Not until you prove it. And logging on as an alt to support your claim with someone claiming a "vague memory" doesn't count. You still haven't even provided a citation to any source claiming the diagnosis of "sociopath" existed in the DSM III-R.

Now, here is a link to some DSM III-R pages. The top one is a list of accepted DSM III-R codes. I've examined all 9 pages of them. They do not contain a diagnosis of "sociopath." They do, however, contain diagnoses of APD, NPD, and and BPD--the very same diagnostic criteria as exist in the DSM-IV.

It would be quite a surprise if they changed the diagnosis of "sociopath" to APD, an already existing disorder, as you claim.

I do believe you're wrong, and I'm right. I stand by my proposition, now supported by citation.
 I stated you were wrong based on lots of research done before today. And the best evidence before us supports me, not you.


So, let's see that scan of yours.


Enjoy your community college Psych 101 course.  I don't care what you "believe" anymore.
 
2013-06-12 05:55:52 PM  
Are we talking about religion (or Religion, if that's your bag) as that is the basic premise of every Theistic organization (even Scientology, the ultimate sociopaths). "My god tells me what to do and therefore, whatever I do is better than anything you do because I am the representative of the only true god."

If that's not sociopathic behavior then please, put your Liberal Arts/ Sociology Major to good use and make your parents proud by refuting/trolling my interpretation.
 
2013-06-12 05:56:34 PM  

shortymac: -Or an Authoritarian Asshat who was always right no matter what


Funny you should bring that up.

My friend was naive to marry him at 20. He was totally controlled by his family, and expected his children to be totally controlled by him. For the most part, he got what he wanted. When it came time to end the marriage (middle aged, looked around, figured his life sucked and it must be because he was married, got divorced, life still sucked), New York lacking no-fault divorce and "turning the house into a living hell" being a time-tested strategy, he basically took the reins off the daughter and started rewarding her for being horrible to her mother, hugging her and praising the daughter for cursing at her, hitting her, etc. The police were called several times. Told her she didn't have to pass classes, didn't have to come home at night, didn't have to get a job, in order to make her mother the "bad" parent.

I now have some reason to believe that the father has somehow convinced his adult son to turn over a portion of his paycheck to him in order to keep him from moving out, as well, and his son lives in abject terror of his father knowing that he has any kind of relationship with his mother, even looking over his shoulder nervously when they run into each other in public.

My friend only found out recently that once she was driven out of the house, he actually couldn't handle his daughter on his own and had her committed. In spite of that, she completely blames her mother for "abandoning her" while insisting that her father was "there for her" because he didn't make her get a job and lets her live there rent-free at 30, once she realized her last boyfriend wasn't going to give her a free house. (On the other hand, there is some reason to believe that the father has actually been disclosing her whereabouts to her ex, in order to give him opportunities to basically stalk her in order to seek reconciliation and thereby get her back out of the house.) She has the police calls on her laundry list of grievances explaining why her mother's love and wanting the best for her is "a big act", claiming that the police were called for "like, no reason". (Isn't the belief that other people's feelings are also a bogus facade a common aspect of sociopathy?) From prior experience, I know that when she says something happened for "no reason", it is an indicator that she was doing something horrible and realizes it is not in her interest to disclose it.

Farked up shiat.
 
2013-06-12 06:01:35 PM  
I could do that, but then I'd have to live with me.
 
2013-06-12 06:02:35 PM  

Hrist: I've met plenty of people who would outright tell you that they'd rather watch ten thousand kittens be tortured and killed one by one rather than having a single penny of their paycheck be taken out to save them all.  They'd probably try to make up excuses but the fact of the matter is they just don't care.  America is full of them.  If you told everyone that 10% of their paycheck would ensure free high quality health care for everyone in America, they'd still reject it, even though they probably already spend 30% of their paycheck on shiatty healthcare...they could reduce that to 10% and everyone would be taken care of, but they'd rather pay MORE just to see other people suffer.


That is absolutely true but I think that's just being a selfish, short-sighted idiot.
 
2013-06-12 06:03:03 PM  

OneNightStand: Are we talking about religion (or Religion, if that's your bag) as that is the basic premise of every Theistic organization (even Scientology, the ultimate sociopaths). "My god tells me what to do and therefore, whatever I do is better than anything you do because I am the representative of the only true god."

If that's not sociopathic behavior then please, put your Liberal Arts/ Sociology Major to good use and make your parents proud by refuting/trolling my interpretation.


I'd say no, because like any other socially organizing principle, religion doesn't preclude empathy with others within the group. Sociopathy (sociopathism? sociopathocity?) does. But you might be right if you interpret "groups" as mutually accepted extensions of individual selves - meaning the empathy within the group is only empathy for the self. In which case we're farked.

/B.A. - Thanks Mom and Dad!
 
2013-06-12 06:05:03 PM  

xanadian: FTFA: 1. Claim there are a lot more people like this than you previously thought. Confessions of a Sociopath says that "one in twenty five of us are sociopaths". Yeah, and I think I've probably dated them all. The figure is patently inflated, but it succeeds in giving the impression that being a psycho is no stranger than having dyslexia or a bad knee.

I used to be a normal person, like you, but then a sociopath put an arrow in my knee.


Let me guess. Some sociopath stole your sweetroll.
 
2013-06-12 06:06:16 PM  

shortymac: gglibertine: shortymac: Quite frankly, I think everyone is born like this (to varying degrees) and have to be taught to curb that behavior and think about others.

People who think this scare the crap out of me. Much like the people who think that without the fear of god, everyone would just run around raping and murdering and stealing like crazy. It suggests to me that you actually feel the desire to do these things, and only don't because you've been trained not to.

/And I did, I totally called it. Do I win a prize?

Have you seen some of the shiat kids do and say to one another? How mercilessly they'll tease and beat up the "weird" kid?

Did you see what those kids did to that old bus monitor lady?

The vast majority of living people go not give a shiat about the world around them except for societal expectations and their comfort.

Remember, we're all just hairless apes.


this
 
2013-06-12 06:08:53 PM  

brantgoose: The true sociopath enjoys harming others and has no reason to refrain from harming others. They can be socialized (learn the rules, play by the rules as long as they please or as long as necessary) but in the end, there is something totally missing.


Loved your post, mostly agreed. Do not agree with this. In order to derive enjoyment from harm, there must be a payoff of some kind. In people with empathy, this payoff must either be higher than the price they might pay (mostly internally, most do not think of long term consequences so we're talking guilt/remorse here) or the urge to get the payoff so strong that it overrides whatever impulse control they have.

Most of us do not enjoy harming people for reasons other than empathy. I've no desire, for example, to sexually violate you with a bottle. It's not that forcible penetration with an object bothers me. It's not that I'm sexually prudish, or even put off by the idea between consenting adults and all that jazz. It simply wouldn't do anything for me, so why exert the effort to bother? You might find it really icky. But...if I you were assured you'd get $10 million for doing it to a consenting adult...you might. Or the cure for cancer. Whatever your price might be. Whatever has more value in some way *to you* than the price *you pay* for doing it. It's all about ourselves. Even if we're being altrustic in some way (cancer! cured it!) it might be argued it's because we enjoyed the credit. Or if credit is denied us (cancer magically goes away no one knows why, no one will believe yoooou) our 'payoff' might be the satisifaction we enjoy from knowing how farking awesome we are.

Anyhoo, they enjoy winning. Winning might very well involve hurting others. Winning might be making the other person cry. Or destroying them. Or it might be winning teacher of the year and doing better than everyone else. There's an arrogance laced with contempt that they *know* they're better than most everyone else, and deep enjoyment in proving that, and winning. That can surface in someone being very competitive, instead of destructive.

No argument that it is a huge problem for society as many are able to do things that benefit self at great cost to the group (hello bankers) but since it's not something that can be changed or cured, it's something we have to watch for within our systems to prevent that harm to the group. Or try to in any event.
 
2013-06-12 06:09:11 PM  
A co-worker once accused me of treating the general populace as a science experiment only I was privy to. I would coerce, manipulate, seed and sow, then monitor the fruits of my destruction. She was really close to me, so she saw what I was doing and became rather disturbed. She finally called me on it, so I started a romantic relationship with her and destroyed her ego and self worth, then told her how and why I did it.

I used to be an extreme asshole. I'm paying a karmic debt these days for my sins, for damned sure.
 
2013-06-12 06:10:14 PM  

AGremlin: Enjoy your community college Psych 101 course. I don't care what you "believe" anymore.


= D
 
2013-06-12 06:15:31 PM  

Lady Indica: Most of us do not enjoy harming people for reasons other than empathy. I've no desire, for example, to sexually violate you with a bottle.


Go on...

Seriously, though, my understanding is that because the sociopath lacks stimulation from empathy, they often get stimulation from constructing games to win.

Push this person's buttons, make them cry. Trick someone into doing whatever you want by telling them you love them. Pretend to be interested in a conversation and let the fool go on never knowing how boring you find them. Badmouth someone and get other people to agree with you.

Without the empathy to feel sorrow for what you've done to someone, you only feel pleasure from getting your way.

HST's Dead Carcass actually just put it pretty well above, and I've watched the girl I'm discussing in these other posts turn on the cruelty switch with her own brother at the drop of a hat in order to cut his balls off with a smile. He's always said he thought she was a monster, and now we're starting to see what he meant.
 
2013-06-12 06:15:33 PM  

Astorix: Ayn Rand was definitely a sociopath. So was L Ron Hubbard and Aleistar Crowley.


Very true.

Are you saying false prophets of cults often are sociopathic narcissists?

If someone already has the ANSWER before you ask the QUESTION they are selling some big BS.
If then they tell you only THEY have the answers. Grab your wallet and run!
 
2013-06-12 06:18:17 PM  

dopekitty74: If you think you MIGHT be a bit sociopathic, but feel vaguely guilty about it, what does that make you?


www.blastr.com
 
2013-06-12 06:21:05 PM  

AGremlin: Enjoy your community college Psych 101 course. I don't care what you "believe" anymore.


Here's the thing. Do you know why I acknowledged I might be wrong?

It's because I think it's okay to be wrong sometimes. I'm comfortable admitting I'm wrong when I'm wrong, because it's not that big of a deal to me.

Don't let the chuckleheads on Fark convince you that being wrong is a mortal sin. It's not. People make mistakes.
 
2013-06-12 06:21:14 PM  

Walter Paisley: There may be people who are inherent sociopaths, but can someone temporarily be a sociopath? I probably would have fit the criteria when I was younger, but I have mellowed out a lot in recent years.


One of the reasons why I think everyone is born with these tendencies and we learn to curb them.

My completely herb-based theory is that sociopathic behaviors are a sort of "survival mode" of our pysche, sort of like the "monkey sphere" (Humans can only handle like 100-odd social connections at a time). We can engage in this pathos of behavior temporarily to escape bad situations, like say war, famine, etc.
 
2013-06-12 06:22:04 PM  

punkhippie: Walter Paisley: There may be people who are inherent sociopaths, but can someone temporarily be a sociopath? I probably would have fit the criteria when I was younger, but I have mellowed out a lot in recent years.

In response to this and freewill above ("Girl ain't right" story): I don't think you can tell with teenagers. They're going through so much shiat, and going through it so farking poorly, that you can't make any judgements about what their real character is like.


In my case, the sociopathic behavior would have been from my childhood up through my mid 20's. While I don't think I'm incapable of empathy now, I do wonder if I have an abnormal sense of it. It seems a little hard to explain, but it's more of a concern for the well-being of others from an intellectual rather than an emotional level. I sometimes wonder if I'm a sociopath who's just trying not to be one.
 
2013-06-12 06:26:25 PM  

freewill: Lady Indica: Most of us do not enjoy harming people for reasons other than empathy. I've no desire, for example, to sexually violate you with a bottle.

Go on...

Seriously, though, my understanding is that because the sociopath lacks stimulation from empathy, they often get stimulation from constructing games to win.

Push this person's buttons, make them cry. Trick someone into doing whatever you want by telling them you love them. Pretend to be interested in a conversation and let the fool go on never knowing how boring you find them. Badmouth someone and get other people to agree with you.

Without the empathy to feel sorrow for what you've done to someone, you only feel pleasure from getting your way.

HST's Dead Carcass actually just put it pretty well above, and I've watched the girl I'm discussing in these other posts turn on the cruelty switch with her own brother at the drop of a hat in order to cut his balls off with a smile. He's always said he thought she was a monster, and now we're starting to see what he meant.


Yes, that's my understanding as well. But some people heavily invested in the 'game' of 'winning' are also very concerned about winning by their own rules. That's also why they're better than you. Everyone has an investment in HOW they see themselves. We just don't all share the same parameters for self. There are those in history who had an investment in self in being the best torturer (as an extreme example).

But in modern society there's plenty of professions that sociopaths can do well in if intelligent and self disciplined. Bright sociopaths can make damned good surgeons. And lawyers. In fact I almost died on the table due to a breathing problem during surgery and the doc who saved me I'm 99% sure is a functional sociopath. Unbelievably charming, glib, and came around after to talk about how wonderful he was like the winning HS QB, and then never followed up again. My personal doc who was doing the surgery by contrast came around concerned as fark for me and how I was doing. But I'd damned glad the one doc was emotionally detached enough to go with a risky and somewhat violent method of pulling me out. (While they were bringing me up the breathing tube triggered an asthma attack so severe it was collapsing my respiratory system. They had to drop me under again. Every time it happened, but they couldn't remove the tube because...breathing now compromised. Took hours to find solution. Doctor had another doctor literally rip out the one tube as he slammed the other down my throat...a child tube SLATHERED in lidocaine. It worked, though I was quite sick and sore after. And my lip was torn. But alive. Prolly sans a couple of brain cells. ;)) Just for the curious, it's not that amazing of a story really. Other than to like, me personally.

If you're dealing with a criminal case for your life, you want a lawyer who could be described as brilliant, a great oratator and ruthless. Or do you want a really, really nice guy. (Or gal, whatever).

Lots of other things too.

Another aspect of sociopaths I rarely see mentioned is that they seem to very rarely have a morbid fear of death. Some actually believe in an afterlife (or puport to, can't know what's in anyone's mind for sure) but that fear most people have...is very very muted in sociopaths. Another trait which I imagine comes in handy in some specific situations.

/very scared of death
 
2013-06-12 06:27:13 PM  
Scrolling up, I'm realizing that all of my posts in this thread sound like Dr. Evil describing his childhood.

When she was insolent, she was placed in a burlap bag and beaten with reeds - pretty standard, really.
 
2013-06-12 06:31:13 PM  
Is this like Mensa? How can I apply?
 
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