40 years of faulty wiring

The Psychopath and the Rest of Us

Psychopaths have always fascinated me.  Perhaps that is why I have a shower curtain with bloody hands imprinted on it a la Norman Bates (there is a matching bloody footprint bathmat I have yet to acquire from eBay).  I painted a picture of poor Janet Leigh when Norman pulled open the shower curtain and thrust an enormous blade into her flawless body repeatedly until she lay dead and bleeding on the bathroom floor. watch psycho – the shower scene with and without music.  The most effective thing about Psycho was that it was filmed in black and white yet it was impossible not to recognize the blood  streaming from Leigh’s inert body. watch psycho trailer 1960

There is a debate as to whether psychopaths are also sociopaths: some researchers insist sociopath is an erroneous term.  The difference between the two as I understand it is that psychopaths develop their pathology due to their own innate personality traits and possible brain abnormalities, whereas a sociopath is made pathological through a dysfunctional environment. Criminologists for instance would likely accept sociopath as the correct term whereas forensic investigators might opt for the former. Whichever you agree with all psycho/sociopaths share three common characteristics: they are all very egocentric individuals; they lack empathy for others; they are incapable of feeling remorse or guilt watch psychopath, part 2

You can choose your ideal psychopath if you are so inclined:

  1.  PRIMARY PSYCHOPATHS do not respond to punishment, apprehension, or disapproval. It’s unclear if they grasp the meaning of their own words, a condition called “semantic aphasia.”
  2. SECONDARY PSYCHOPATHS are risk-takers, but are also stress-reactive, worriers, and guilt-prone. They are also vulnerable to stress, suggesting this type is not “fully psychopathic.”
  3. DISTEMPERED PSYCHOPATHS are the kind that seem to fly into a rage or frenzy easily. Their frenzy will resemble an epileptic fit. They are usually men with incredibly strong sex drives.
  4. CHARISMATIC PSYCHOPATHS are charming, attractive liars. They are gifted at some talent or another, and they use it to manipulate others. They are fast-talkers, and possess an almost demonic ability to persuade others out of everything they own.  website:  psychopathy

One of the causes of sociopathic behavior is believed to be neurological abnormalities mainly in the frontal lobe of the brain; this area is related to fear conditioning. Fear conditioning in humans is believed to lead to the development of a conscience. Abnormal anatomy or chemical activity in this area of the brain may be caused by abnormal growth, brain disease, or injury. watch psychopathy and criminal behaviour

Most psychopaths brag about their exploits (often called a warning sign), but the woman who is fascinated by him will not leave him because the psychopath makes her feel special. The real danger about psychopaths is that some women have a psychological disposition towards them. These women usually possess a hysteric or histrionic personality. When manipulating a female, the psychopath targets women called the “dumb blonde” type: she exudes naivete, is unconscious of her sexuality, is often not too bright. Or he seeks out the motherly type who feels sorry for him and wants to “fix” him. Often the psychopath is good-looking however if it was possible to see the real, inner person, most people would never associate with them. watch defence against the psychopath (full version)

I’ve known a few psychopaths. They are pathological liars; one man I knew told me he was a “busker” during the summer (he stood on street corners and played guitar for money), but he couldn’t play guitar!  He only knew three chords and he could barely play them! One psychopath stole $200.00 from me and when I wept he asked me how did I think he was able to buy groceries and other goods that morning? 

Perhaps that is the reason psychopaths fascinate me. Their ability to manipulate yet intrigue is an alluring paradox, even though their bizarre deception isn’t actually that deceptive. More likely it is lying to oneself about the nature of the beast that feeds into a psychopath’s power.  That, and seeing what one wants to see, hearing what one wants to hear.







April 26, 2012 - Posted by | Bizarre yet True, corrruption, Crime and Punishment, Human Biology, Human psychology | , , , , , , , ,

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