I was brought up and knew my way around the 20th century when much to my surprise the 21st century came along and everyone started making up new confusing rules I was supposed to have memorized (long after it was too late to memorize anything).

Thursday, May 01, 2014

My reaction to the interview with Mary Ellen O'Toole


I am a philosopher and a layman philosopher at that. I embrace all fields of knowledge and speak freely about psychopaths and sociopaths. I change hats like Imelda Marcos changes shoes.

Mary Ellen O'Toole makes quite a valid point when she says that psychopaths need not be violent.  In fact, a psychopath with intelligence is going to act without violence to avoid conflicts with the law or conceal the violence. That doesn't mean the psychopath sitting at home and watching TV didn't just sell a home he knows but failed to disclose that sits on a foundation that was improperly compacted or that if the damage to the house to come ever goes to court he won't absolutely deny knowing anything about the soil engineering report that was faked to cut costs for the grading contractor.  Harmless, sitting in his living room counting the money he made cheating a little old lady.

Mary Ellen O'Toole states that there are violent people, rapists and killers who aren't psychopaths: that is, they do not meet the standards for a clinical diagnosis - no neurotransmitter imbalances that can be quantified, no brain swelling or growth in the brain that can be measured, no gene that can be identified as the psycho gene and does not answer the questionnaire for the psychotic profile as required to be given the questionable status.

Sociopaths learn their behaviors from psychopaths and other sociopaths and would probably never develop such anti-social tendencies without adequate role models.

So when we talk about 1% who are strictly defined psychopaths, we are leaving out an unknown percent of the population that has developed psychopathic behaviors and become sociopaths.

I for one have questions. What causes the ebbs and flows of such aberrations in a population?   Can we eliminate such violent crime by rooting out obvious causes and implementing remedies?

I have seen laws applied stringently and abusively on some and applied lightly and forgivingly on others.  I have seen HR departments that answer to a sociopathic lying boss who rewards everyone who lies and cheats for him and punishes anyone who is truthful and forthright.  Within such HR departments I have seen truly legitimate HR people doing their job right laid off and crooked lying brown nosing HR people satisfying a criminal agenda promoted.

I maintain that the majority of hardened criminals are never prosecuted but are able to turn the tables, discredit their accusers and manipulate social gangs to persecute any who dare try and expose them.
The nature of psychopaths and sociopaths is to evade getting caught, so a majority of them polish the image of being law abiding citizens. Many of us can see through these ruses and pay for it.

I like Mary Ellen O'Toole’s advice about listening. One of the maxim's I learned was that "if you aren't listening, you aren't learning anything" or transposed, "if you are talking, you aren't learning anything."

I am a little anguished about BK's suggestion to proactively police psychopaths, not because it's a bad idea but because it backfires.
There is already too much corruption and such a license to police people on the theory of what they might do opens a panacea of criminalizing people who haven't done anything to protect cronies who cheat lie and steal.

Can you imagine one psychiatrist on the payroll of syndicated crime condemning person after person once that person has been covertly set up? Their complaints are classified as imaginary (since the evidence is concealed and/or removed in such cases) and the victims, people with integrity, honesty and character are always going to be the likely targets of such a system with so many sociopaths in power.

Famous failures in the past of proactive policing are exemplified in the example of a case in point:  the Symbionese Liberation Army. Per Mae Brussel's research the Symbionese Liberation Army was created and justified as a way to catch criminals before they committed crimes. This was one aspect of COINTELPRO, a much larger crime prevention program in the 1960's which resulted in violating people's rights and creating more crime than it stopped. The SLA was formed by two CIA operatives working with a 2 ex-undercover LAPD officers. They recruited people to commit crimes.

The final conclusions were that
1) They created crimes that would not have happened otherwise.
2) They recruited people who may have never become involved with crime but were cajoled and coerced into crime.

As a society we preach that every person has equal rights under the law and the law is meant to be enforced fairly on all people. In practice, we have secret societies and cronyism creating the rule "for our friends, everything's OK, for our enemies, nothing's OK. All others see rules and regulations".

Mary Ellen O'Toole told us the most important thing she could tell us: upon encountering bothersome behavior report that behavior if it is reportable and avoid that person if it is not. This advice is often impossible in the workplace but is a good rule of thumb.

I am reminded of a time I was very close to a person who was impeccably honest, ethical and fair, not to mention truly brilliant. We lived in a community where the criminal mentality was rather dominant. I was confided in, by an insider in the criminal world, that my friend was 'not' very smart.  I was shocked.

I learned he was considered stupid and weak because he was forthright, honest, ethical and fair. Being smart is all about getting ahead faster and not getting caught.

This is the belief system in today's world we all must face.  All we can do is try and make the system work.