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View Poll Results: What would you do?

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  • Flicking the switch in case 1, but not pushing the man in case 2.

    6 35.29%
  • Flicking the switch in case 1 and pushing the man in case 2.

    4 23.53%
  • Not flicking the switch in case 1, yet pushing the man in case 2.

    1 5.88%
  • Not flicking the switch, nor pushing the man.

    4 23.53%
  • No opinion.

    2 11.76%
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Thread: Are You a Psychopath?

  1. #1 Are You a Psychopath? 
    Moderator Moderator Cogito Ergo Sum's Avatar
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    Kevin Dutton give us two psychological and ethical dilemmas:
    "Imagine you've got a train and it's hurtling down a track. In its path, five people are trapped on the line and cannot escape. Fortunately, you can flick a switch, which diverts the train down a fork in that track, away from those five people, but at a price. There is another person trapped down that fork and the train will kill them instead. Question: Should you flick the switch?
    (...)
    But now let me give you a variation. You've got a train speeding out of control down a track and it's gonna plow into five people on the line. But this time you are standing behind a very large stranger on a footbridge above that track. The only way to save the people is to heave the stranger over. He will fall to a certain death, but his considerable bulk will block the train, saving five lives."


    This problem is a variation of the famous trolley problem.

    Case 1 is an impersonal dilemma (it relies on reasoning).
    Case 2, however, is a personal dilemma (it relies on feelings). Here is the twist:
    "Psychopaths, without a moment's hesitation are perfectly willing to chuck the fat guy over the rails, if that's what the doctor orders. (...) The pattern of brain activation in both normal people and psychopaths is identical on the presentation of the impersonal moral dilemma, but radically different when things start to get a bit more personal.[citation needed]"


    So, would you flick the switch in case 1 and push the man in case 2?

    Sidenote:
    In a survey of 931 leading professional philosophers, taken in 2009, 68.2% of the subjects were ready to flick the switch when confronted with the first case.


    Sources:
    Are You a Psychopath? Take the Test. - YouTube
    http://philpapers.org/archive/BOUWDP


    Last edited by Cogito Ergo Sum; April 6th, 2014 at 08:36 AM.
    "The only safe rule is to dispute only with those of your acquaintance of whom you know that they possess sufficient intelligence and self-respect not to advance absurdities; to appeal to reason and not to authority, and to listen to reason and yield to it; and, finally, to be willing to accept reason even from an opponent, and to be just enough to bear being proved to be in the wrong."

    ~ Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Being Right: 38 Ways to Win an Argument (1831), Stratagem XXXVIII.
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  3. #2  
    ▼▼ dn ʎɐʍ sıɥʇ ▼▼ RedPanda's Avatar
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    Why should I give a damn about any of them?

    If I am feeling bored then I might push the stranger off the bridge, but I might also wait until the train had passed before doing so - it would depend on how I wanted him to die.


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  4. #3  
    Forum Professor scoobydoo1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    So, would you flick the switches in case 1 and case 2?
    No and No.

    Value judgement like these aren't interesting enough for me to enter a personal dilemma mode. Since the subjects in the scenario are likely to be strangers, their "economic value" are the same; with greater/lesser numbers not being a factor for me personally. I tend to prefer one that poses more of a ethical dilemma; such as how many people would I be willing to sacrifice to save someone I know and have invested in personally.
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    Malignant Pimple shlunka's Avatar
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    I'll just let the train run over the five twits, your welcome Darwin.
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  6. #5  
    ...matter and pixie dust wegs's Avatar
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    I'm pretty well read on this subject and I dated someone who I would classify as a psychopath. They do know right from wrong, but they don't care

    In the trolley example, the psychopath doesn't care about anyone but himself. They are very self loathing and view life from that vantage point.That said...if the psychopath pushes the guy over the rail it would be because he would get a thrill of having the power to do so. Not because he is interested in saving the others.I would go as far to say that he would do nothing in the first scenario and watch everyone die. That is a psychopath. If the psychopath were to "flick the switch" it would be because he stands to gain something better than not flicking it.

    I wish I didn't know so much about such types. They are more prevalent than u think. They are often NOT violent or criminal in nature as we think of a Ted Bundy or someone like that. The trait that marks a psychopath is lack of a conscience. They know right from wrong but they simply don't care.:/ And...everything they do...is to have them emerge the "winner" in the end.

    They seek to win at all costs.
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  7. #6  
    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Can I drive the train?
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  8. #7  
    ▼▼ dn ʎɐʍ sıɥʇ ▼▼ RedPanda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    That would be a definite yes for the Panda...
    Most of the 'tests' I have done on the web, magazines, etc. say that I have a highly-developed sense of empathy - but I couldn't care less.
    *shrug*
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  9. #8  
    ▼▼ dn ʎɐʍ sıɥʇ ▼▼ RedPanda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    (I'm sure the panda would agree!)
    That reminds me of a joke a friend once told me.

    It was a long, rambling joke about a panda and a prostitute.
    It took about 5 minutes to tell.

    Finally he reached the punchline: "Well, I'm a panda! If you look up panda in the dictionary is say "Eats.....something.....something....." - I'm not good at remembering punchlines."
    I am sure I would not be the only person that considered killing him.
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  10. #9  
    Forum Professor scoobydoo1's Avatar
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    After re-reading the OP for a second time, these are some issues I will raise.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Kevin Dutton presents us a two psychological and ethical dilemmas:
    "Imagine you've got a train and it's hurtling down a track. In its path, five people are trapped on the line and cannot escape. Fortunately, you can flick a switch, which diverts the train down a fork in that track, away from those five people, but at a price. There is another person trapped down that fork and the train will kill them instead. Question: Should you flick the switch?
    I take issue with the wording of "Should" in the question. It suggests an obligatory action on our/my part, wherein I personally do not see it that way. I would perhaps rephrase it to "Would you flick the switch?", leaving the question opened ended and without the assumption that any action being obligatory; hence not imparting or suggesting a judgmental "tone" to the question.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Case 1 is an impersonal dilemma (it relies on reasoning).
    Case 2, however, is a personal dilemma (it relies on feelings).
    Honestly, I do not see how case 2 can be personal if the "large stranger" is a still stranger. Does Kevin Dutton assume the personal contact with the larger stranger (needing to tip him/her over) somehow changes the "game"? I personally think these two cases can be re-worded to induce a real sense of dilemma. Perhaps I'm being unnecessarily demanding here, but I had higher hopes of something more than a classic question.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Here is the twist:
    "Psychopaths, without a moment's hesitation are perfectly willing to chuck the fat guy over the rails, if that's what the doctor orders. (...) The pattern of brain activation in both normal people and psychopaths is identical on the presentation of the impersonal moral dilemma, but radically different when things start to get a bit more personal.[citation needed]"
    There is one assumption that I've noted; that psychopathic and/or sociopathic tendencies are actually present in many people (in those that I've observed). Given the right motivation or consequence, they (these tendencies) can arise in just about anyone, and that does not make these "normal" people pathological psycho/sociopaths.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Sidenote: In a survey of 931 leading professional philosophers, taken in 2009, 68.2% of the subjects were ready to flick the switch when confronted with the first case.
    I am more interested in how these 69.2% rationalize their decision than in their final answer. Decision making processes often make for analysis for value theory. I don't suppose these 68.2% were interviewed after the survey, were they?
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  11. #10  
    Northern Horse Whisperer Moderator scheherazade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedPanda View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    (I'm sure the panda would agree!)
    That reminds me of a joke a friend once told me.

    It was a long, rambling joke about a panda and a prostitute.
    It took about 5 minutes to tell.

    Finally he reached the punchline: "Well, I'm a panda! If you look up panda in the dictionary is say "Eats.....something.....something....." - I'm not good at remembering punchlines."
    I am sure I would not be the only person that considered killing him.
    A lengthy joke AND a forgotten punch line...

    That would distract me from the original problem long enough for the laws of physics to resolve the issue of two things being unable to occupy the same space at the same time.

    I subscribe to the rule of non-interference as advocated in the original series of Star Trek.

    Still, I have been known to intervene at times. Intervention is often controversial and not everyone will thank you for getting involved, hence we have a field of study known as 'ethics'.
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  12. #11  
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    This kind of test is in error from the start. Much like any conceptual models (they may not reflect reality). Even if this situation were to present it's in Reality the mind can resort to out of the box solutions. Which I bet here aren't allowed (hence the error of the test.
    If on one track are 5 adults and on the second track is a baby? This test presents with an abstract form of Free will. I'm assumed capable to make a decision. But what about the other 5 on the track? They can't make decisions? If they (all of them) decide to sacrifice themselves for the baby? My only dilemma will remain about honoring their wishes.

    The maker of this test can be on the tracks?
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  13. #12  
    Northern Horse Whisperer Moderator scheherazade's Avatar
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    Originally posted by hyperion!is:

    This kind of test is in error from the start. Much like any conceptual models (they may not reflect reality). Even if this situation were to present it's in Reality the mind can resort to out of the box solutions. Which I bet here aren't allowed (hence the error of the test.
    If on one track are 5 adults and on the second track is a baby? This test presents with an abstract form of Free will. I'm assumed capable to make a decision. But what about the other 5 on the track? They can't make decisions? If they (all of them) decide to sacrifice themselves for the baby? My only dilemma will remain about honoring their wishes.

    The maker of this test can be on the tracks?
    I like the way you're thinking, lol...
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  14. #13  
    Moderator Moderator Cogito Ergo Sum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    I take issue with the wording of "Should" in the question. It suggests an obligatory action on our/my part, wherein I personally do not see it that way. I would perhaps rephrase it to "Would you flick the switch?", leaving the question opened ended and without the assumption that any action being obligatory; hence not imparting or suggesting a judgmental "tone" to the question.

    I am not sure if Mr. Dutton has intentionally used the word "should", but I understand your point.

    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    I personally think these two cases can be re-worded to induce a real sense of dilemma.

    How would you rephrase them?

    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    There is one assumption that I've noted; that psychopathic and/or sociopathic tendencies are actually present in many people (in those that I've observed). Given the right motivation or consequence, they (these tendencies) can arise in just about anyone, and that does not make these "normal" people pathological psycho/sociopaths.

    The whole quote is an assumption (i.e. I could not any find papers that indicate that these statements are true, hence the [citation needed]).
    I suppose that Mr. Dutton has elucidated these claims in his book The Wisdom of Psychopaths.

    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    I am more interested in how these 69.2% rationalize their decision than in their final answer. Decision making processes often make for analysis for value theory. I don't suppose these 68.2% were interviewed after the survey, were they?

    No, they weren't.
    The methods of the survey are explained on pp. 7-8.
    "The only safe rule is to dispute only with those of your acquaintance of whom you know that they possess sufficient intelligence and self-respect not to advance absurdities; to appeal to reason and not to authority, and to listen to reason and yield to it; and, finally, to be willing to accept reason even from an opponent, and to be just enough to bear being proved to be in the wrong."

    ~ Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Being Right: 38 Ways to Win an Argument (1831), Stratagem XXXVIII.
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  15. #14  
    ...matter and pixie dust wegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    That would be a definite yes for the Panda...
    Lol!

    While we are joking around here, in truth, a psychopath only cares about self interest. If it behooves him to flick the switch, he will. If it behooves him to throw the guy over the rail, he will. Psychopaths don't wrestle with "moral dilemmas." They scoff at rules and morals but will pretend to care if again...it behooves them.

    I don't care for the trolley example because it implies that if you chose one or the other...you "might" be a psychopath. When in reality, a psychopath doesn't wrestle with ethical decisions like we do. In other words, if u actually contemplate as to what u might do in the trolley scenario...from an ethics point of view, that alone means you're not a psychopath.
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  16. #15  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    How would you rephrase them?
    To firstly induce a real ethical/moral dilemma and to secondly elicit a non-impersonal/dispassionate response, we require a subject that has "economic value" to the person answering the question of "What would you do?"

    Perhaps only allowing the option of putting ourselves or someone close to us in harms way to save another person/party from harm. The choice of choosing to sacrifice our/my baby/spouse/family member/close friend/etc. to save a larger amount of people in a similar scenario given. Or perhaps the inverse; sacrificing a larger amount of people (perhaps also comprising of "innocent" babies/children) to save someone we value.

    Something along the lines of pushing one's "line in the sand" to the limit as it were. Such as would you kill someone's baby to save your own, or killing someone else's spouse to save the spouse of someone you know; with the failure to choose will result in your own death. It may sound a little twisted, but it will likely reveal where the "line in the sand" is drawn.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    I am more interested in how these 69.2% rationalize their decision than in their final answer. Decision making processes often make for analysis for value theory. I don't suppose these 68.2% were interviewed after the survey, were they?
    No, they weren't.
    The methods of the survey are explained on pp. 7-8.
    Pity. Knowing the answer is only half as interesting as knowing how the participants arrived at the answer if you ask me.
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  17. #16  
    ...matter and pixie dust wegs's Avatar
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    It's safe to assume none of us are psychopaths, as a psychopath wouldn't give the "dilemma" much thought. There would be no dilemma in his mind. I will add another variable into the mix. The psychopath's mom is in place of the fat guy. Think the end result will change? The psychopath would throw his own mother in front of the train if it behooved him.I studied this disorder for two years; its very complex and confusing. But you will know a psychopath when u see him if he doesn't wrestle at all with moral or ethical dilemmas.Think Hitler. Think Ted Bundy. Think the CFO of Enron. They can be criminals or non criminals.What those three above have in common is no conscience. So, to come up with all kinds of what ifs...the psychopath doesn't do that.
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    For some reason, this thread reminds me of a fable.

    There are many variations to this famed fable, but the short of it is as follows:
    A scorpion and a frog meet on the bank of a stream and the scorpion asks the frog to carry him across on its back. The frog asks, “How do I know you won’t sting me?” The scorpion says, “Because if I do, I will die too.”

    The frog is satisfied, and they set out. But in midstream, the scorpion stings the frog. The frog feels the onset of paralysis and starts to sink, knowing they both will drown, but has just enough time to gasp “Why?”
    Replies the scorpion: “It’s my nature…”
    Moral of the story?

    Never be the frog.
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  19. #18  
    Ascended Member Ascended's Avatar
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    I guess we'd all like to think we'd do the right thing, but when the choice isn't clear what the right thing is to do and is just a numbers game can we even know what we'd really do until actually faced with the reality of the situation. I like to think I'd flick the switch but not push the man, but I don't know what I'd really do until faced with that situation.

    I do think the ethical dilema posed by the idea of pushing the man is something many doctors must have had to resolve when it comes to saving the life of a potential organ donor whose organs could save many more lives. So if it's not right for the doctor to kill someone to save many others then it probarbly isn't right for us to push the man over. I think flicking the switch is different because the man is already on the track which is unfortunate but a chance you take for being on a railway track, probarbly that would be the kind of justification used to placate the conscience.
    Last edited by Ascended; August 5th, 2013 at 12:39 PM. Reason: put is instead of isn't
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    I see that people like moral dilemmas even if a specific case is non-sense or not.
    How about this for a moral dilemma?
    What if the conceiver of this test (Kevin Dutton) was a psychopath?
    Anyone paid any thought to that?
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  21. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    I see that people like moral dilemmas even if a specific case is non-sense or not.
    I like it because these exercises tells me a little more about the person that I am, or how someone else rationalizes and justifies their decisions. In short, the decision making process in conjunction with what may be arbitrary values one assigns to objects/subjects in such scenarios; whether they are merely following what they have been "taught" to do, or if they achieved a level of self-awareness wherein they may actually put in effort to understand why they do the things they do.

    Some are merely comfortable following their social/biological programming without giving why they do the things they do much thought, whereas others may be more self-aware and wishes to understand themselves more than just superficially.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    How about this for a moral dilemma?
    What if the conceiver of this test (Kevin Dutton) was a psychopath?
    Anyone paid any thought to that?
    How is that a moral dilemma? Did you mean it may be (im)moral to read material written by a possible psychopath?
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    How is that a moral dilemma? Did you mean it may be (im)moral to read material written by a possible psychopath?
    Is not about reading. Anyone can read, without risk I think.
    If this was made by a psychopath:
    1. Why a psychopath will even do that? To see what makes people around him, who think about themselves to be normal, tick? Especially if he knows that the test was deliberate made in such a way that is a "trap". No possible correct answer. The "game" being "rigged" from the start.
    2. People jump to make this test. How time will take them to notice that the game is rigged? After taking the test, making a decision, they will come to belive that it was the right answer? Will they make the same choice in Real life the same way? They arrived at the psychopath view on morality?

    Things like that. Is an open question.
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  23. #22  
    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    I didn't see any dilemma for either case. Why would I or the fat guy be standing up on a cliff watching the train come to hit the people? If that is the scenario it's obvious the fat guy is the Penguin


    or Fat Bastard


    and probably set the whole thing up. So I'd shove him over anyway. and hit the switch just in case. And I'd make sure to scream,

    "Shut up crime!!"




    while doing it.
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    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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  24. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Why a psychopath will even do that?
    Amusement, genuine curiosity, possible pleasure in seeing how others react to a hypothetical scenario, etc. are my guesses.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    To see what makes people around him, who think about themselves to be normal, tick?
    Well, one can gain insight into the decision making process of another by the way they tackle the presented dilemmas. Not so much the choice they make, but how the choice was thought out, rationalized, and eventually justified.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Especially if he knows that the test was deliberate made in such a way that is a "trap". No possible correct answer. The "game" being "rigged" from the start.
    It isn't so much as making "a/the" correct choice (assuming there even is one), but would we willingly allow the opportunity of understand how we make choices/decision slip-by in preparation that we may one day be faced with such a scenario. Besides, its nice to have such thought provoking questions of how we handle situations now and again. I myself have entertained similar questions many times, and each time, the variables such as the subjects change to see where my line in the sand is.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    People jump to make this test. How time will take them to notice that the game is rigged? After taking the test, making a decision, they will come to belive that it was the right answer? Will they make the same choice in Real life the same way? They arrived at the psychopath view on morality?
    Viewing the world through another person's eyes and understanding how they make decisions based on the values they have assigned can be somewhat insightful. The methodology or approach in which they assign these values and weigh the pros and cons (if they are viewed as pros and cons) before arriving at a decision is the closest thing we have to "reading" their minds. Some are reluctant to tackle questions like these head on because it can be quite disturbing to them; that or they may be insecure about the vulnerability when explaining their decision in public that others may object to. Public perception has always been one of the greatest form of "peer pressure" if you have ever seen a poltican waver.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Things like that. Is an open question.
    Is the above the moral dilemma you have in mind? No offense, but it isn't one from how I see it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    To firstly induce a real ethical/moral dilemma and to secondly elicit a non-impersonal/dispassionate response, we require a subject that has "economic value" to the person answering the question of "What would you do?"

    Perhaps only allowing the option of putting ourselves or someone close to us in harms way to save another person/party from harm. The choice of choosing to sacrifice our/my baby/spouse/family member/close friend/etc. to save a larger amount of people in a similar scenario given. Or perhaps the inverse; sacrificing a larger amount of people (perhaps also comprising of "innocent" babies/children) to save someone we value.

    That would make things a lot more interesting, wouldn't it?
    Perhaps one could introduce the subject with the greatest "economic value": You.
    "The only safe rule is to dispute only with those of your acquaintance of whom you know that they possess sufficient intelligence and self-respect not to advance absurdities; to appeal to reason and not to authority, and to listen to reason and yield to it; and, finally, to be willing to accept reason even from an opponent, and to be just enough to bear being proved to be in the wrong."

    ~ Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Being Right: 38 Ways to Win an Argument (1831), Stratagem XXXVIII.
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  26. #25  
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    Guessing what you might do in advance of a highly unlikely future event cannot be a valid measure of psychopathic behavior disorder.
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  27. #26  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    To firstly induce a real ethical/moral dilemma and to secondly elicit a non-impersonal/dispassionate response, we require a subject that has "economic value" to the person answering the question of "What would you do?"

    Perhaps only allowing the option of putting ourselves or someone close to us in harms way to save another person/party from harm. The choice of choosing to sacrifice our/my baby/spouse/family member/close friend/etc. to save a larger amount of people in a similar scenario given. Or perhaps the inverse; sacrificing a larger amount of people (perhaps also comprising of "innocent" babies/children) to save someone we value.

    That would make things a lot more interesting, wouldn't it?
    Perhaps one could introduce the subject with the greatest "economic value": You.
    I did.

    * One example I can think of are firefighters who places themselves in harms way in the line of duty. The popular image of one pulling a child from a flaming building is commonly conjured.
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  28. #27  
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    Did anybody mention what the law says about making this choice? I know the law doesn't require you to be a good samaritan. But by making a choice you will be taking an active roll in taking someones life, regardless of whoever else you might save. I think you could be prosecuted for murder. They do have good samaritan laws to protect people who act to save lives.

    Good Samaritans Law & Legal Definition

    However, I'm not sure they would apply in any case where your choice would cause another death.

    In any event why would a psychopath care who dies or doesn't die. Also, a psychopath is not likely to act unless he feels he can get away with killing someone and not suffer any consequences.
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    Yeah.

    Realistically, a psychopath would weigh the very high probability of getting prosecuted for murder if the does throw the fat guy onto the tracks against the near certainty of not getting prosecuted for murder if he lets the 5 people die.

    It's an obvious choice. I'd be very surprised if any psychopath anywhere were willing to throw the fat guy over. Instead, he'd just watch the 5 people excitedly. If he had binoculars or a camera, it would be time to get them out.
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  30. #29  
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    hell yes
    video record the disaster, then sell it to the news media
    superb sociopathic behavior
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    Signs You Might Be Dating A Psychopath - Life After Dating A Psycho | Life After Dating A Psycho

    I was involved with a guy who fit a lot of these 'signs.' It was a horrible experience, but it taught me a lot.
    Thought you'd find it interesting, since it's in line with the topic.

    I don't think they noted in that list, something that is really important to keep in mind with these types. A hallmark sign of a narcissist/psychopath, he/she will get you to commit to them quickly. They will tell you they love you, after three weeks of meeting you. At first, that seems romantic, but as time goes on...they start to show their true colors. People who have married psychopaths often say that they were proposed to after only a few weeks. lol You can't know someone, let alone LOVE him/her, in just a few weeks.

    So...while it sounds oh so romantic...if someone tells you he/she loves you after a few dates....RUN!!!!! LOL
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  32. #31  
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    But is it justified to kill one to save 1000? It could be argued that the many are worth more than the one, and that may be the truth. But now I have to weigh how I will feel about killing the one or allowing the 1000 to die when could have done something to prevent it. If I side with the many then I should also save the 5 over the one.

    As Spock has said, "The needs of the many out weigh the needs of the one". Now the big question is would I do that? I can only say I don't know. I would actually have to be in that situation to know for sure.
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  33. #32  
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    how could you know for sure the outcome of your action?
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    how could you know for sure the outcome of your action?
    The only thing you can know for sure is that in saving the many, you will minimize the amount of grief that will be caused.

    A similar question might be if you could time travel to the past would you kill baby Hitler? Changing the past even in a small way could be catastrophic and killing baby Hitler would be a very big change to say the least.
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    what if
    one of the five were a serial rapist?
    you didn't know this and saved his life so he could go on to rape and rape and rape again?
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    what if
    one of the five were a serial rapist?
    you didn't know this and saved his life so he could go on to rape and rape and rape again?
    If you play the "what if game" you won't make any choice. But not choosing is a choice too. I can definitely say I wouldn't change the past, and I still don't know that I would act in the present to change the future. But I might.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    what if
    one of the five were a serial rapist?
    you didn't know this and saved his life so he could go on to rape and rape and rape again?


    Maybe, instead of a rapist, one of the 5 is a rape counselor who has helped numerous survivors of rape to recover and live reasonably normal lives afterward, and if you spare them they'll go on to help still more others.

    If you have no legitimate statistical reason to assume one way or the other, it's probably best to just call it 50/50.

    Any random person could be the next Hitler, or the next Mother Teresa. Or the next random person who doesn't do very much.
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  38. #37  
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    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run.

    Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Bing View Post
    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run.

    Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
    I agree with you completely. Psychopathy is an extremely complex mental illness. The reasons for why a psychopath may or may not choose to do something are unpredictable to the non psychopathy. They are able to perceive things to be logical and rational that most people are not. That's why sometimes, it takes a psychopath to be able to track one down. I realize Silence of the Lambs was fiction, but often in order to track down a serial killer, (the textbook psychopath) a detective almost has to become as psychotic as the killer himself, to learn to think like the psychopath and to do that takes time and lots of clues, usually found at the murder scene or in how the victims are killed. A normal person would find it pretty difficult to figure out the clues but if one is willing to play with the darkside, they can find their inner psychopath and learn to see the logic in their madness. Steven King, and the person who writes the Saw movies, are people who have visited that area of their mind and were able to make the books or movies without acting them out personally. Unfortunately, Heath Ledger visited that dark area of his mind and couldn't reconcile what he found there. He was never able to leave the Joker behind except through suicide. At least that is the popular speculation on about his death.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Can I drive the train?
    Sir DUCK!!! *howling* oh my god that was so funny!! ahahahahhaahahahahhaaha


    I'd try to shove the man...but I'm 95 pounds....he's big...that isn't a good scenario! *Laughing*

    oh my god....:Can I drive the train?"

    still laughing
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    what if
    one of the five were a serial rapist?
    you didn't know this and saved his life so he could go on to rape and rape and rape again?
    then oops.....but then how would you know at that moment?
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    Is the above the moral dilemma you have in mind? No offense, but it isn't one from how I see it.
    Inside view and outside view to this:
    ""Imagine you've got a train and it's hurtling down a track (not by it's own I presume, there is a mechanic). In its path, five people are trapped on the line and cannot escape (why). Fortunately, you can flick a switch, which diverts the train down a fork in that track, away from those five people, but at a price. There is another person trapped down that fork and the train will kill them instead. Question: Should you flick the switch?"

    Inside view:
    You have a situation where you are there and you have a chance. To do something or not (which may be viewed as wasting the chance). You can confront the situation and flip the switch diverting the train away from 5 people and killing one. Without a economic value many, many it seems, are using math to resolve ethical dilemma: 5>1. It's ok, to use math? It's that simple?

    Outside view:
    This is the case where you are allowed to "place" the scenario in Reality or think "outside the box", beyond the scope of this test (whatever this scope may be).
    Someone will ask them selves some questions (related to past and future events let's say):
    1. Who put the people on the tracks? (how I asked above. Why they cannot escape? Are the tied up?). By who?
    a) A psychopathy.
    b) A terrorist.
    2. I can assume (and I think everyone of us has "defaults" to a state) that a mechanic (or whatever is called, the driver of the train) is there. What he did during all this? From the time of a possible observation (default: a straight line/path) to hitting the brakes and come to a full stop?
    a) He was receiving a blow job?

    So, we have a situation where everything gone wrong. Because of who/why? Other people incapabilities/limitations?
    For 1. a and b we can relate to society and it's mechanisms. A psychopath? Mental institutions and prevention. A terrorist: National security and such.
    For 2. b it's the mechanic.
    So, from an outside view is about a superhero complex. You can (and allowed) to solve what allot of other people couldn't (see above). This is the description of a superhero (such as society's inability to fight crime). Whatever you do you become a hero, depending on the other people view. If it's alright to "kill" one to save many (5) then you are a superhero for those. For others which is in opposition with this math you became a hero by choosing to kill the 5 instead of one. To do nothing, is not an option because if no action no heroism (nobody likes a waiver). You can see such results if you don't state to the subject on which path the train already is; unknown.

    In this scenario you can :
    - pull the switch = save 5 people. Economic value: 5-1=4.
    - you don't pull the switch. Passive decision: no action required, the train is already on the path you chosen.
    - you do nothing. A little different from the above. You can think a little but you choose to not intervene without having all the facts. Like when you don't have enough time to think or when you have time, but if you have more time you can get the people off the tracks. This can be a very good decision, not to interline - you are not God.

    In Real life (possible scenario): you pull the switch but the switch gets stuck in the middle, the train derails killing all the people on each tracks, kills the mechanic and (default for many I imagine: is a cargo train) and you kill all the people in the train, in a likely scenario where is not a cargo train but full with people (300?).

    From an outside view: either is a mash up test or you are put in a super-hero position and you are "relieved" from such an analysis because how I said: most probably analyzing the test to say that is faulty or to came with out of the box solutions is not allowed, and so is no use to think about it.

    But that's just my opinion. What do you think?
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    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    What do you think?
    Before I address your post, I invite you (and others who may be interested) to read the following for some background in value theory so that we may understand each other a little better, and perhaps to give you some insight (if it wasn't clear the first time) into my decision in post #4.

    Value Theory (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Inside view: You have a situation where you are there and you have a chance.
    I am in a situation where I am able to act if I so choose to; Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Inside view:To do something or not (which may be viewed as wasting the chance).
    It is only a "wasted chance" had I not thought it through before my (in)action.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Inside view:You can confront the situation and flip the switch diverting the train away from 5 people and killing one.
    I am able to do so; Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Inside view:Without a economic value many, many it seems, are using math to resolve ethical dilemma:
    In the scenario; "more lives saved" does not equate more value, and since I am the one who decides; the criteria of value in this instance resides with me and me alone; therefore it is unassailable. Had I equate "more equals higher value", I would act accordingly.

    There is a sort of simple mathematics involved; Yes. However, it isn't about saving more lives through action, but of taking action to end a single life whose isn't mine to take. What you are suggesting requires action on my part to actively end a life in exchange for five's whose lives were already about to end had I or anyone else not be there to both be aware of the switch and be aware that flicking it will result in an active participation in ending a life that wasn't about to end.

    This act of involvement to end that one life crosses "my line in the sand" since I had not received that one person's voluntary permission to do so. I suspect many bystanders see the situation as saving five lives that were about to end; but from my perspective, I am or will be ending a single life that wasn't about to end. That is the distinction.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Inside view:5>1. It's ok, to use math? It's that simple?
    It is for me, and I suspect many others; although I am not quite sure if many of them have realized it. To clarify, it isn't the number of people that is considered value as you have put it. Such as five strangers = 5 points, and one stranger = 1 point.

    Since they are all strangers, with five that are about to die, and one that wasn't about to die, their values are equal. Five strangers = 1 point, and one stranger = 1 point from my perspective, and since I and only I am in the position to decide in the context of the classic question, it is my prerogative and no one else's.

    The popular appeal to "the needs of the many outweighs the needs of the few" does not apply in this context since I am not actively sacrificing myself for the needs of the many, but am about to actively take someone else's life for which I was not given permission to take.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Outside view: - pull the switch = save 5 people. Economic value: 5-1=4.
    Refer to the above explanation, and should you require additional clarification, please ask.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    Outside view:- you don't pull the switch. Passive decision: no action required, the train is already on the path you chosen.
    Your perception of my supposed inaction is a result of my decision to not take a life that wasn't about to end, therefore it is in no way passive.

    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    that's just my opinion.
    I can understand that my position may seem unusual to some or many, but it is carefully a thought out one after entertaining this and many similar scenarios off and on; over the course of at least two decades.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Bing View Post
    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run. Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
    Agree.The title of the thread, doesn't really fit with where the thread has turned.
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  45. #44  
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    Quote Originally Posted by hyperion1is View Post
    In this scenario you can :
    - pull the switch = save 5 people. Economic value: 5-1=4.
    - you don't pull the switch. Passive decision: no action required, the train is already on the path you chosen.
    - you do nothing. A little different from the above. You can think a little but you choose to not intervene without having all the facts. Like when you don't have enough time to think or when you have time, but if you have more time you can get the people off the tracks.
    We tend to focus on the negatives. Instead of thinking that, by throwing the switch, you are choosing for 1 or 5 people to die. It might be more healthy to think that you are getting to choose who will live.

    Do you choose for 5 people to live, or 1 person to live?

    A doctor may have to make that decision, like if he/she sees 6 people dying, and knows that he/she has time to save 5 of them if they prioritize the 6th one last, or they can save only one of them if they do that guy first.


    This can be a very good decision, not to interline - you are not God.
    Does God exist?

    If God doesn't exist, and we already know immoral people will still go around making these kinds of decisions even if moral people won't, then what you're saying is that immoral people should be given the exclusive privilege of making these decisions. Why do you prefer that outcome? Do you think that immoral people will make better choices than moral people would?

    Do you realize that, in a sense, your position actually grants immoral people a status in society equal to that of a God? Maybe we should set up churches and worship them too, while we're at it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Bing View Post
    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run. Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
    Agree.The title of the thread, doesn't really fit with where the thread has turned.
    Many times when following the posts in this thread I've thought we were talking about sociopaths and not psychopaths. While both suffer from a lack of empathy for others. I've always had the impression that the psychopath was nothing more than a mentally ill sociopath. In other words the psychopath is much worse than a sociopath. With that in mind I agree wegs in this post.
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    Apparently a lot of Christians think their god is something of an extreme psychopath.

    Train operator sacrifice his only son - YouTube
    Last edited by kojax; August 7th, 2013 at 03:59 PM. Reason: Clarify film clip's name.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Bing View Post
    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run. Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
    Agree.The title of the thread, doesn't really fit with where the thread has turned.
    This is the nature of most discussions. Sometimes the OP doesn't require a whole lot of heavy detailed discussion but rather the thread dying for lack of topic material, it just evolves into other things. You should see the Likes and Dislikes thread in the site feedback subforum lol.
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    I have always subscribed to the philosophy espoused by Mr. Spock. "The good of the many outweighs the good of the few." If I had to kill 2 to save 5, I would do so. Not because I am a psychopath, but because 5 for 2 is a damn good exchange. On the other hand I would not push the fat guy over, for the simple reason I do not believe it would stop the train. The fat guy would be killed for nothing.

    Psychopaths, of course, as someone else said, would do nothing beyond watching the killings for their entertainment value. About 3% of our population are psychopaths, and most of them stay out of trouble. On the other hand, about 30% of people in prison are psychopaths (except in the USA, where far too many people in prison are simply those who got caught using drugs). Most psychopaths are not stupid enough to get caught committing crimes. Instead, they work within the system making use of teir ruthlessness and lack of empathy to advance themselves. Many psychopaths are, in fact, extremely charming. But their charm is a tool, used with malicious aforethought to achieve their goals, often at the expense of other people.
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  50. #49  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Bing View Post
    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run. Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
    Agree.The title of the thread, doesn't really fit with where the thread has turned.
    Many times when following the posts in this thread I've thought we were talking about sociopaths and not psychopaths. While both suffer from a lack of empathy for others. I've always had the impression that the psychopath was nothing more than a mentally ill sociopath. In other words the psychopath is much worse than a sociopath. With that in mind I agree wegs in this post.
    Quote Originally Posted by seagypsy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Alec Bing View Post
    This has nothing to do with psychopathy if the subject is killing the person because he is trying to save more people. A psychopath would either do nothing or maybe kill for entertainment because he was bored or the person got on his nerves. In this case, you are talking about making a rational decision about what would do the most good for others in the long run. Is it just a coincidence that this thread was posted just before the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the perfect example of a rational decision to kill in order to achieve an overall better outcome.
    Agree.The title of the thread, doesn't really fit with where the thread has turned.
    This is the nature of most discussions. Sometimes the OP doesn't require a whole lot of heavy detailed discussion but rather the thread dying for lack of topic material, it just evolves into other things. You should see the Likes and Dislikes thread in the site feedback subforum lol.
    lol this ^^ made me laugh, seagypsy...about the like/dislike thread.
    yes...it spawned a life of its own now.

    yes, threads do derail...or 'evolve' let's say into other things...other topics...but the problem i have is the 'quiz' itself.
    personality and mental disorders are not remotely determined like this, and the quiz gives the idea that psychopathy is easily detectable. or narcissistic personality disorder which is its close cousin.

    both are very hard to detect, unless you are personally involved with one...or work closely with one. if you have occasional passings with a psychopath, he/she could fool you for years, and you wouldn't know it. but, when you date/marry one or work with one, the signs become quicker to detect.

    i think this was an interesting thread though just the same. and i'm oh so thrilled to know...none of you SEEM like psychopaths. haha
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    lol this ^^ made me laugh, seagypsy...about the like/dislike thread.
    yes...it spawned a life of its own now.

    yes, threads do derail...or 'evolve' let's say into other things...other topics...but the problem i have is the 'quiz' itself.
    personality and mental disorders are not remotely determined like this, and the quiz gives the idea that psychopathy is easily detectable. or narcissistic personality disorder which is its close cousin.

    both are very hard to detect, unless you are personally involved with one...or work closely with one. if you have occasional passing's with a psychopath, he/she could fool you for years, and you wouldn't know it. but, when you date/marry one or work with one, the signs become quicker to detect.

    i think this was an interesting thread though just the same. and I'm oh so thrilled to know...none of you SEEM like psychopaths. haha
    We've had sociopaths as members, but it does take a while to ID them and even then you need to be careful, because just because you might be able to spot them, doesn't mean very many other members will.

    The question I have is, do you think the psychopath know they are a psychopath? They might know they are different, but admitting you are a psychopath is probably not something you would consider in your best interest.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    lol this ^^ made me laugh, seagypsy...about the like/dislike thread.
    yes...it spawned a life of its own now.

    yes, threads do derail...or 'evolve' let's say into other things...other topics...but the problem i have is the 'quiz' itself.
    personality and mental disorders are not remotely determined like this, and the quiz gives the idea that psychopathy is easily detectable. or narcissistic personality disorder which is its close cousin.

    both are very hard to detect, unless you are personally involved with one...or work closely with one. if you have occasional passing's with a psychopath, he/she could fool you for years, and you wouldn't know it. but, when you date/marry one or work with one, the signs become quicker to detect.

    i think this was an interesting thread though just the same. and I'm oh so thrilled to know...none of you SEEM like psychopaths. haha
    We've had sociopaths as members, but it does take a while to ID them and even then you need to be careful, because just because you might be able to spot them, doesn't mean very many other members will.

    The question I have is, do you think the psychopath know they are a psychopath? They might know they are different, but admitting you are a psychopath is probably not something you would consider in your best interest.
    haha yeah, i don't think they want anyone to know that about them.

    they actually try pretty hard to 'seem normal.'
    think about the craig's list killer...remember that story?
    he was good looking. very smart. educated. beautiful fiancee. he was the life of the party.
    but he was a psychopath.

    but, his 'other' side...
    he was addicted to porn.
    womanizer/player
    he was lying constantly to his fiancee.
    his behavior eventually became violent, but he seemed like a mild mannered guy to everyone who 'knew' him.
    and he had no remorse ...

    when he was being arrested, he was supposedly smiling, and noted as telling his fiancee...'just remember...i love you.'

    haha ok, buddy.
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    Do psychopaths know they are psychopaths?

    From my reading, it appears as if many do. It depends on how well educated they are. It also appears as if many psychopaths are totally unfazed by the knowledge they are psychopaths. In fact, it makes many proud - feeling that they are special. The qualities that make a psychopath are also the qualities a psychopath values.
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    Something to add here too...the only way to get rid of a psychopath is to go completely no contact. No emàil. No texting. Block your phone number.I eventually had to change my phone number because the guy was calling from blocked numbers.They don't care about boundaries. They just want attention. Bad or good.So...another "sign" of one is when he/she won't "let go" ....after a breakup.Internet stalking, constant phone calls...coming to your home unannounced ...It's not flattering....it's not love.It's a psychopath being a psychopath.
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    The irony was...he was cheating on me the whole time. I broke up with him and he wouldn't stand for that.You are nothing more than an object to be used by a psychopath.Horrible moment in my life. :/Learned a lot and grew wiser.So...if what I learned can help someone else?Maybe it was worth it...
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Something to add here too...the only way to get rid of a psychopath is to go completely no contact. No emàil. No texting. Block your phone number.I eventually had to change my phone number because the guy was calling from blocked numbers.They don't care about boundaries. They just want attention. Bad or good.So...another "sign" of one is when he/she won't "let go" ....after a breakup.Internet stalking, constant phone calls...coming to your home unannounced ...It's not flattering....it's not love.It's a psychopath being a psychopath.
    Just so you know, you aren't alone here. Don't let that creep you out lol. I meant that you're not the only member here who has had the misfortune of being romantically involved with a sociopath or psychopath. I and at least one other member who will likely let you know on his/her own, have been down that road. Both of my ex-husbands were special in such a way. What they didn't count on is that I am special in such a way that I can pick up the nature of those around me and become just like them if necessary. I'm a bit of a mental chameleon and can take on any mental illness necessary (almost) to do what is necessary to survive and not let my "sanity" get in the way and stop me.

    I guess in that sense I am or can be called both a psychopath or a sociopath differing in only that I am aware of it and can turn it on or off as necessary, and I do have a conscience and prefer not to act on socio/psychopathic traits. I am not sure how I learned how to do this but I used to be fascinated with serial killers as a kid, used to watch horror flicks way too young, have high functioning autism, but wanted to act, so I studied human behavior intensely through observation and psychology formerly in my early years of college, then as a hobby on the side. and though I have played no paying acting gigs, I have been many different people throughout my life quite convincingly when necessary.

    When I watch a movie, or read a book, I become whichever character interests me most while I am reading it.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Something to add here too...the only way to get rid of a psychopath is to go completely no contact. No emàil. No texting. Block your phone number.I eventually had to change my phone number because the guy was calling from blocked numbers.They don't care about boundaries. They just want attention. Bad or good.So...another "sign" of one is when he/she won't "let go" ....after a breakup.Internet stalking, constant phone calls...coming to your home unannounced ...It's not flattering....it's not love.It's a psychopath being a psychopath.
    I'd call him a sociopath, if he was a true psychopath you probably wouldn't be here to tell the story. The link below is a free download of a highly recommended book by Martha Stout. Shocking to say the least.

    The Sociopath Next Door .pdf - PDF Archive
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    Quote Originally Posted by seagypsy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Something to add here too...the only way to get rid of a psychopath is to go completely no contact. No emàil. No texting. Block your phone number.I eventually had to change my phone number because the guy was calling from blocked numbers.They don't care about boundaries. They just want attention. Bad or good.So...another "sign" of one is when he/she won't "let go" ....after a breakup.Internet stalking, constant phone calls...coming to your home unannounced ...It's not flattering....it's not love.It's a psychopath being a psychopath.
    Just so you know, you aren't alone here. Don't let that creep you out lol. I meant that you're not the only member here who has had the misfortune of being romantically involved with a sociopath or psychopath. I and at least one other member who will likely let you know on his/her own, have been down that road. Both of my ex-husbands were special in such a way. What they didn't count on is that I am special in such a way that I can pick up the nature of those around me and become just like them if necessary. I'm a bit of a mental chameleon and can take on any mental illness necessary (almost) to do what is necessary to survive and not let my "sanity" get in the way and stop me. I guess in that sense I am or can be called both a psychopath or a sociopath differing in only that I am aware of it and can turn it on or off as necessary, and I do have a conscience and prefer not to act on socio/psychopathic traits. I am not sure how I learned how to do this but I used to be fascinated with serial killers as a kid, used to watch horror flicks way too young, have high functioning autism, but wanted to act, so I studied human behavior intensely through observation and psychology formerly in my early years of college, then as a hobby on the side. and though I have played no paying acting gigs, I have been many different people throughout my life quite convincingly when necessary.When I watch a movie, or read a book, I become whichever character interests me most while I am reading it.
    Wow, that's interesting seagypsy! I'm comforted to know I'm not alone. It wasn't easy to get ppl to understand what had happened. When he kept calling after I blocked his number, ppl started understanding that it wasn't just a guy who couldn't let go. In other words, you feel me, here. That's comforting. I'm sorry you tangled with these types too. ((Hugs))
    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Something to add here too...the only way to get rid of a psychopath is to go completely no contact. No emàil. No texting. Block your phone number.I eventually had to change my phone number because the guy was calling from blocked numbers.They don't care about boundaries. They just want attention. Bad or good.So...another "sign" of one is when he/she won't "let go" ....after a breakup.Internet stalking, constant phone calls...coming to your home unannounced ...It's not flattering....it's not love.It's a psychopath being a psychopath.
    I'd call him a sociopath, if he was a true psychopath you probably wouldn't be here to tell the story. The link below is a free download of a highly recommended book by Martha Stout. Shocking to say the least.The Sociopath Next Door .pdf - PDF Archive
    Maybe. They are both closely related to narcissistic personality disorder. I've read that all psychopaths are narcissists, not all narcissists are psychopaths.
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Cogito Ergo Sum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    I am more interested in how these 69.2% rationalize their decision than in their final answer. Decision making processes often make for analysis for value theory. I don't suppose these 68.2% were interviewed after the survey, were they?
    No, they weren't.
    The methods of the survey are explained on pp. 7-8.
    Pity. Knowing the answer is only half as interesting as knowing how the participants arrived at the answer if you ask me.
    I also have that gripe with the Trolley Problem - I'd really like to know the rationale behind how people came to their decisions. I don't like the way peoples' answers are pigeon holed. For instance:

    The fact that I have to push someone, or pull a lever, to kill him is irrelevant to me - the end result is the same: I have killed him to spare 5 other people. So that is not the distinction in the circumstances that influences my decision. My decision is based on what I believe is a moral principle of who the cosmos have bestowed the right to make the decision:

    1 guy on tracks vs. 5 guys on tracks: I am the person by the lever, their lives are out of their own hands. Morally it is my right to make the decision, I pull the lever.

    Fat Man on Bridge vs. 5 guys on tracks: I am not the fat man, and he is within control of the situation as equally as I am. The fat man has the right to make the choice himself. Morally it is not my right to make the decision, I do not push him.

    The "Personal" vs. "Impersonal" Dilemna at no time has an influence on how I analyse the circumstances. It is completely an issue of whether or not I am the only person capable of making the decision.
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    There seems to be a bit of confusion here as to what makes a psychopath.

    For a start, sociopath and psychopath are synonyms. There is no difference. It is just that the work psychopath tends to be used more in relation to those who commit serious crimes, but both are exactly the same.

    A stalker is not normally a psychopath. A psychopath has no human feelings, and definitely not love. A psychopath is a person who feels no empathy, no conscience, nolove, no generosity etc. However, he or she is not normally a serial killer or major criminal. There are more psychopaths among politicians and business executives, than serial killers. Psychopaths can be charming, but use the charm as a tool to manipulate people. Most psychopaths are proud of themselves, believing that they are the smart ones, in using people, and that all those other people who have a conscience are being stupid. Being nasty is not often a mark of a psychopath, either. Non psychopaths are entirely capable of being very nasty. Psychopaths that are intelligent are more likely to be attractive than nasty, since that behaviour helps them to manipulate people.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stander-j View Post
    I also have that gripe with the Trolley Problem - I'd really like to know the rationale behind how people came to their decisions. I don't like the way peoples' answers are pigeon holed. For instance:

    The fact that I have to push someone, or pull a lever, to kill him is irrelevant to me - the end result is the same: I have killed him to spare 5 other people. So that is not the distinction in the circumstances that influences my decision. My decision is based on what I believe is a moral principle of who the cosmos have bestowed the right to make the decision:

    1 guy on tracks vs. 5 guys on tracks: I am the person by the lever, their lives are out of their own hands. Morally it is my right to make the decision, I pull the lever.

    Fat Man on Bridge vs. 5 guys on tracks: I am not the fat man, and he is within control of the situation as equally as I am. The fat man has the right to make the choice himself. Morally it is not my right to make the decision, I do not push him.

    The "Personal" vs. "Impersonal" Dilemna at no time has an influence on how I analyse the circumstances. It is completely an issue of whether or not I am the only person capable of making the decision.
    Just to tweak the scenario a little bit to see if your decision holds true; what if I switch that one stranger out and replace him/her with a woman and her new born infant. If it is purely a numbers game, it is still two lives vs five lives. Will that influence you decision?

    Following that thought; substitute the stranger mother and infant with your spouse and your new born infant, will you still do it?

    I suspect the values you/we assign to familiarity and emotional investment in the person/people you are about to kill by sparing the five strangers will change the decision in most people. Or for instance, the stranger mother and infant may still have higher value assigned over the five strangers who were originally in the direct path of the on-coming trolley.
    Last edited by scoobydoo1; August 8th, 2013 at 12:59 AM. Reason: fixed quotation
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    Just to tweak the scenario a little bit to see if your decision holds true; what if I switch that one stranger out and replace him/her with a woman and her new born infant. If it is purely a numbers game, it is still two lives vs five lives. Will that influence you decision?

    Following that thought; substitute the stranger mother and infant with your spouse and your new born infant, will you still do it?

    I suspect the values you assign to familiarity and emotional investment in the person/people you are about to kill by sparing the five strangers will change the decision in most people. Or for instance, the stranger mother and infant may still have higher value assigned over the five strangers who were originally in the direct path of the on-coming trolley.
    I would choose to kill the mother and infant over the five others in your first tweak.

    In your second tweak, I would let the train kill the five other people - I think you're right that most people will change their response based on their investments in the people on the tracks. In that scenario, the consequences have a direct effect on me... So I would also murder the hell out of the fat man (Even though I acknowledge that morally it is not my choice to make, it is in my best interest to do so).

    I suppose I rationalize it the following way: To pull, or not to pull, the lever is up to me - and therefore it is impossible for me to make the "wrong" decision. By way of rights, I can never be wrong if the lever is present. If it's the fat man, I will always be wrong if I push him - no matter the situation... But that doesn't mean I cannot be influenced into doing so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stander-j View Post
    I would choose to kill the mother and infant over the five others in your first tweak.
    Interesting. The few people I've discussed this scenario change with many years ago hestitated (some longer than others), and the outcome of flicking the switch became divided, when it was previously mostly for acting to save the five lives.

    Quote Originally Posted by stander-j View Post
    In your second tweak, I would let the train kill the five other people
    Only two people out of more than fifteen (if I remember correctly) would still follow through with flicking the switch to spare the five and by allowing the trolley to end the lives of their spouse and infant; although I can (at the time) still sense their hestiation. Perhaps those two didn't give a serious enough an answer because of the hypothetical scenario, and I suspect they may change their minds if they were really in that exact same situation.

    Quote Originally Posted by stander-j View Post
    I think you're right that most people will change their response based on their investments in the people on the tracks. In that scenario, the consequences have a direct effect on me... So I would also murder the hell out of the fat man (Even though I acknowledge that morally it is not my choice to make, it is in my best interest to do so).
    Values assigned to personal and emotional investment tend to higher than those that aren't. These assigned values do add up and tip the scales either way should the scenario involve subjects/objects that all have such investments.

    Quote Originally Posted by stander-j View Post
    But that doesn't mean I cannot be influenced into doing so.
    In this, you aren't alone. It may come down to which act yields the most incentive(?).
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    There seems to be a bit of confusion here as to what makes a psychopath.

    For a start, sociopath and psychopath are synonyms. There is no difference. It is just that the work psychopath tends to be used more in relation to those who commit serious crimes, but both are exactly the same.

    A stalker is not normally a psychopath. A psychopath has no human feelings, and definitely not love. A psychopath is a person who feels no empathy, no conscience, nolove, no generosity etc. However, he or she is not normally a serial killer or major criminal. There are more psychopaths among politicians and business executives, than serial killers. Psychopaths can be charming, but use the charm as a tool to manipulate people. Most psychopaths are proud of themselves, believing that they are the smart ones, in using people, and that all those other people who have a conscience are being stupid. Being nasty is not often a mark of a psychopath, either. Non psychopaths are entirely capable of being very nasty. Psychopaths that are intelligent are more likely to be attractive than nasty, since that behaviour helps them to manipulate people.
    SO the person who murdered (premeditated) my niece is a psychopath? He showed zero remorse.
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    There seems to be a bit of confusion here as to what makes a psychopath.

    For a start, sociopath and psychopath are synonyms. There is no difference. It is just that the work psychopath tends to be used more in relation to those who commit serious crimes, but both are exactly the same.

    A stalker is not normally a psychopath. A psychopath has no human feelings, and definitely not love. A psychopath is a person who feels no empathy, no conscience, nolove, no generosity etc. However, he or she is not normally a serial killer or major criminal. There are more psychopaths among politicians and business executives, than serial killers. Psychopaths can be charming, but use the charm as a tool to manipulate people. Most psychopaths are proud of themselves, believing that they are the smart ones, in using people, and that all those other people who have a conscience are being stupid. Being nasty is not often a mark of a psychopath, either. Non psychopaths are entirely capable of being very nasty. Psychopaths that are intelligent are more likely to be attractive than nasty, since that behaviour helps them to manipulate people.
    SO the person who murdered (premeditated) my niece is a psychopath? He showed zero remorse.
    Not necessarily. It would depend on the motive. Without asking you to go into what would likely be the painful memories and horrifying details, there isn't any way anyone here could determine that the person who did that to your niece was a psychopath.

    There are plenty of motives for murder that may leave a sane person showing no remorse. For instance a battered spouse who eventually plans out and acts on murdering their abuser and due to the sense of justice felt by the person who technically murdered their victim, they may not feel any remorse in doing so. But that would not make them a psychopath.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    I mentioned this earlier. This is a video dramatization of the OP's scenario, just slightly changed. The operator is having to choose between a whole train of people dying if he doesn't throw the switch, vs. his own son dying if he does throw it.

    It's somewhat religious, because they're trying to make it a metaphor for Jesus Christ dying on the cross, but the footage is pretty well shot.


    Train operator YouTube


    It makes a pretty strong case for a non-psychopath choosing to throw the fat guy over the rail.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    I mentioned this earlier. This is a video dramatization of the OP's scenario, just slightly changed. The operator is having to choose between a whole train of people dying if he doesn't throw the switch, vs. his own son dying if he does throw it.

    It's somewhat religious, because they're trying to make it a metaphor for Jesus Christ dying on the cross, but the footage is pretty well shot.


    Train operator YouTube

    I did watch the video, and the religiosity aside it was completely on par with this thread. I honestly don't know how I would have acted in that. The scenario to me is so far from realistic in my frame of perception because I can't imagine having my own child out running around the tracks in an unsafe area like that. I don't bubble wrap my kids but I don't take my kids into risky areas unless there is a pressing reason for them to be there. And from the video it seemed the kid was just goofing off wondering around a steep drop off and a lot of moving mechanical parts like the bridge for instance. And if I did have some reason to absolutely required me to have my son in a dangerous place you can bet he would have a firm grip of reality and what dangers there are, he wouldn't likely be jumping into bridge mechanisms and fooling around. La La land isn't a place I let my kids play in while existing in a reality full of danger.

    So you can bet, if I had to let my kid die because he was doing something stupid. I would likely end up killing myself for not being a wise enough parent to teach my kid not to be stupid. And seeing someone else's little kid would not be any sort of consolation rather a reminder of what I could have had still if I had only been a better parent to begin with.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    you know.....as a mother.....sorry...I'd be saving my son.....hands down
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    you know.....as a mother.....sorry...I'd be saving my son.....hands down
    I'm curious, just how many people would you be willing to sacrifice to save your son? If not in a similar scenario such as the one described in the OP, perhaps something a little different.

    An on-coming train that is about to rundown your son, but if you flick the switch, it would divert that train into the path of a schoolbus of thirty or so kindergarten children; killing them. Would you do it?
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    This tangent demonstrates the lack of absolutes in Morality.

    I agree with Babe on this one. I'd like to believe that I'd save my son no matter the cost. But none of us really know what we might do in that moment. We might think we would do one thing with confident certainty but if actually tested, do the opposite or do something different or maybe just curl up in the fetal position, suck your thumb and have a complete nervous breakdown.

    I do not have a primal protective instinct for others as I do for my offspring. And because of that, I think I have a greater likelihood of doing something morally questionable to save him than I do of some self sacrificing "greater good." And to be honest, I'm totally ok with that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    very hard to detect, unless you are personally involved with one...or work closely with one.
    In my experience psychopathy is best tested by the subject's interaction with animals, especially housecats. Psychopaths can't rationalize why anyone would want to make an indifferent, useless animal happy. And, because society is uniquely tolerant of intense public displays of affection for pets, people gaga over pets betray their own normalcy.

    ***

    I've taught my son through words and occasional actions that we're heroes when needed. Though I don't believe I've ever said explicitly that we should be ready to die for others, I imagine my son understands my/his values would reach that logically. I dread becoming a coward for him, and a hypocrite. If his dad says, "I changed my mind: save your own skin" and he does it, he'll carry shame and guilt all his life.
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    Psychopaths DO stalk their "prey." And they are not the same as sociopaths. Similar but the two words are not interchangeable.

    It's like saying a sinus infection is the same as the flu. Both are sicknesses. Both make you feel bad. Both share similar symptoms. But, they are subtly different.
    Last edited by wegs; August 8th, 2013 at 07:30 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pong View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    very hard to detect, unless you are personally involved with one...or work closely with one.
    In my experience psychopathy is best tested by the subject's interaction with animals, especially housecats. Psychopaths can't rationalize why anyone would want to make an indifferent, useless animal happy. And, because society is uniquely tolerant of intense public displays of affection for pets, people gaga over pets betray their own normalcy.

    ***

    I've taught my son through words and occasional actions that we're heroes when needed. Though I don't believe I've ever said explicitly that we should be ready to die for others, I imagine my son understands my/his values would reach that logically. I dread becoming a coward for him, and a hypocrite. If his dad says, "I changed my mind: save your own skin" and he does it, he'll carry shame and guilt all his life.
    How about this scenario. You are a married man with kids, you see a burning structure and you hear screams for help coming from within the building. Do you play hero and risk making your kids fatherless. If you do, then your wife made a very bad choice when she married you. I would call 911 and consider myself still a good citizen.
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    I think calling 911 would be fine; but I could see running into the building based on instinct.On 9/11, many strangers helped other strangers, risking their own lives.It could be instinctive to react when in the middle if trauma like that...hard to say.If we are talking about a psychopath...he probably started the fire.
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    To wegs

    Sorry, but you are wrong in saying psychopath and sociopath are different. They are identical. Any difference is purely in the emotional connotations. It is like saying that 'female dog' and 'bitch' are different. The word 'bitch' carries certain emotional connotations, but is still an exact synonym for 'female dog'. Sociopath is a word we are more likely to apply to a ruthless businessman, and psychopath to a serial killer. But the syndrome and the definition are identical. It is just a slightly different emotional connotation.

    To babe

    About the guy who murdered your niece. I could not guess whether he wa a psychopath or not. I would need more information even to make an informed guess. Lack of remorse means nothing. In my personal view, the amount of remorse a criminal shows mostly reflects how good an actor he is. An intelligent psychopath would probably put on a great show of remorse.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Pong View Post
    I've taught my son through words and occasional actions that we're heroes when needed. Though I don't believe I've ever said explicitly that we should be ready to die for others, I imagine my son understands my/his values would reach that logically. I dread becoming a coward for him, and a hypocrite. If his dad says, "I changed my mind: save your own skin" and he does it, he'll carry shame and guilt all his life.
    How about this scenario. You are a married man with kids, you see a burning structure and you hear screams for help coming from within the building. Do you play hero and risk making your kids fatherless. If you do, then your wife made a very bad choice when she married you. I would call 911 and consider myself still a good citizen.
    An adult may do one thing or another and leave it behind. With children it's different: everything my son observes of me is getting processed to define what kind of man he will become. What if he sees his dad taking the easy, selfish, or even cowardly course? He'd either model that behaviour, and develop beliefs to suit it; or he'd despise me for my weakness. But I want my son to become a powerful man, a hero even. And I value the fate of his character more than having him stay safe throughout his life. Incidentally my wife's a jock and shares these values.

    So I find I'm rolling up my sleeves and sticking my neck out more because I've got to set an example now.
    A pong by any other name is still a pong. -williampinn
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoobydoo1 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    you know.....as a mother.....sorry...I'd be saving my son.....hands down
    I'm curious, just how many people would you be willing to sacrifice to save your son? If not in a similar scenario such as the one described in the OP, perhaps something a little different.

    An on-coming train that is about to rundown your son, but if you flick the switch, it would divert that train into the path of a schoolbus of thirty or so kindergarten children; killing them. Would you do it?
    A good question.

    In all honesty, I really do not know.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    I found a much better description that breaks down sociopaths and psychopaths into there subgroups. First they are both subsets of Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD), but they are not the same thing.

    APD is the most common type, afflicting about 4% of the general population. Sociopaths are the second most common type, with the American Psychiatric Association estimating that 3% of all males in our society are sociopaths. Psychopaths are rare, found in perhaps 1% of the population.

    Antisocial Personality, Sociopathy, and Psychopathy

    The link above has the best description I've seen yet.
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    I like that a lot bad robot. Your username always makes me laugh. That gives a lot of great insight!Another interesting website is "sanctuary for the abused"..if you google that it should pop up.
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    To Bad Robot

    Psychiatrists have literally hundreds of subdivisions like that, and these are massively controversial even among their peers. Some would go so far as to defining normal personality variations as mental illnesses. I would not take them too seriously, and you should not, either, if you are smart.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    I like that a lot bad robot. Your username always makes me laugh. That gives a lot of great insight!Another interesting website is "sanctuary for the abused"..if you google that it should pop up.
    It makes me laugh too or at least smile every time I think it.

    I did that search and found this very interesting link.

    Sanctuary for the Abused: Narcissistic Mothers

    When I lived in Tucson AZ, I got involved with a narcissistic woman, and still to this day regret ever meeting her. I had to move to Washington state to get away from her. Nothing like 1600 miles to improve a very bad situation. A friend of mine still in Tucson told me she's had a couple more kids since I left about 4 years ago. That makes a total of 7 kids and 5 dads, and as far as I know she doesn't ever take care of and support any of them for more than a year or two.

    I do want to move back to Tucson maybe in the next year or two. But I have a great deal of anxiety about it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    I like that a lot bad robot. Your username always makes me laugh. That gives a lot of great insight!Another interesting website is "sanctuary for the abused"..if you google that it should pop up.
    It makes me laugh too or at least smile every time I think it.I did that search and found this very interesting link.Sanctuary for the Abused: Narcissistic MothersWhen I lived in Tucson AZ, I got involved with a narcissistic woman, and still to this day regret ever meeting her. I had to move to Washington state to get away from her. Nothing like 1600 miles to improve a very bad situation. A friend of mine still in Tucson told me she's had a couple more kids since I left about 4 years ago. That makes a total of 7 kids and 5 dads, and as far as I know she doesn't ever take care of and support any of them for more than a year or two.I do want to move back to Tucson maybe in the next year or two. But I have a great deal of anxiety about it.
    Wow, that's crazy! I'm sorry you went through that.Two things I learned in my ordeal with that guy:

    1) that it didn't matter what label I gave him (psychopath, etc) he was an abuser. I was in an emotionally abusive relationship and I deserved better.

    2) I played a role in it, too. He got away with abusing me because after a while, I kept staying. I would give him the benefit if the doubt...too often. I had no boundaries not just with him, but with friends too. Breaking it off with him showed me that I needed to stop letting ppl in general, walk on me.

    Now, I have healthy boundaries and when a situation doesn't feel right ...I'm out. It is very liberating to say the least. But it took a lot of work and patience to get here.

    Do you still talk to any friends of her? I had to sever all friends that had any connection to him so I could heal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    To Bad Robot

    Psychiatrists have literally hundreds of subdivisions like that, and these are massively controversial even among their peers. Some would go so far as to defining normal personality variations as mental illnesses. I would not take them too seriously, and you should not, either, if you are smart.
    While I can identify with your position on the subject. There is a wide range of Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD), and the different names offer a way to help classify what part of the range in the ADP spectrum a person might fit into. I find that very helpful when discussing this subject with others. But it's a lot tougher when others do not want to use the classifications provided. It's not a one size fits all, kind of a thing.

    For instance the narcissistic personality has characteristics of both the sociopath and the psychopathic personalities, but it most definitely has it's own distinctive characteristics and does need it's own category.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Do you still talk to any friends of her? I had to sever all friends that had any connection to him so I could heal.
    No I don't, but then I can't say she has any real friends. She is a master manipulator of men until they wise up after considerable pain. But before they wise up she has no problem using them against old boyfriends. Virtually every thing out of her mouth was a lie, even when it wasn't necessary.
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    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!

    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Robot View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    I like that a lot bad robot. Your username always makes me laugh. That gives a lot of great insight!Another interesting website is "sanctuary for the abused"..if you google that it should pop up.
    It makes me laugh too or at least smile every time I think it.

    I did that search and found this very interesting link.

    Sanctuary for the Abused: Narcissistic Mothers

    When I lived in Tucson AZ, I got involved with a narcissistic woman, and still to this day regret ever meeting her. I had to move to Washington state to get away from her. Nothing like 1600 miles to improve a very bad situation. A friend of mine still in Tucson told me she's had a couple more kids since I left about 4 years ago. That makes a total of 7 kids and 5 dads, and as far as I know she doesn't ever take care of and support any of them for more than a year or two.

    I do want to move back to Tucson maybe in the next year or two. But I have a great deal of anxiety about it.
    Sorry about your experience.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!

    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    It's about control. The lying is to keep you focused on them. Telling you that a co-worker passed away ensures that he maintains your attention and sympathy. It is a manipulative tool. Usually this is accompanied by trying to draw you away from your friends and family.

    Or worse, they do things to show you just how much they love you. Sometimes towards the people they know you love and they tell you why they are doing it. Because they love you so much. And then they start to point things out to you that they observed, lies designed to make you trust them and not your loved ones. They then start keeping tabs on you. If you are out without them, they call you and sms you constantly, you know... just to check in. To keep telling you how much they love you. What friends and family you have left tell you how lucky you are to have someone who loves you that much. That they let you do these things with them, without him. Until he starts to lie about them as well and point things out to you that he knows would make you turn away from them.

    The lies are designed to manipulate you and your emotions.

    By the time you leave, by the time you realise, you start on this journey of asking yourself where it all went wrong. What could you have done differently. And you start to break things down into little pieces and you start to see the lies. And the worst pain commences after you realise just how much you were taken in by the lies. And the cycle of self blame begins.

    That is probably why the healing takes a while.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!


    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    I am sorry for your experience.

    I am grateful that have never had that happen to me.

    Good that you are doing better!!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tranquille View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!

    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    It's about control. The lying is to keep you focused on them. Telling you that a co-worker passed away ensures that he maintains your attention and sympathy. It is a manipulative tool. Usually this is accompanied by trying to draw you away from your friends and family.

    Or worse, they do things to show you just how much they love you. Sometimes towards the people they know you love and they tell you why they are doing it. Because they love you so much. And then they start to point things out to you that they observed, lies designed to make you trust them and not your loved ones. They then start keeping tabs on you. If you are out without them, they call you and sms you constantly, you know... just to check in. To keep telling you how much they love you. What friends and family you have left tell you how lucky you are to have someone who loves you that much. That they let you do these things with them, without him. Until he starts to lie about them as well and point things out to you that he knows would make you turn away from them.

    The lies are designed to manipulate you and your emotions.

    By the time you leave, by the time you realise, you start on this journey of asking yourself where it all went wrong. What could you have done differently. And you start to break things down into little pieces and you start to see the lies. And the worst pain commences after you realise just how much you were taken in by the lies. And the cycle of self blame begins.

    That is probably why the healing takes a while.
    this post was phenomenal, thank you so much. i have tears in my eyes reading it. it brings back a lot. but, i don't have emotional attachment to it all, anymore...but i just remember things from time to time...your words here are so very comforting.

    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!


    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    I am sorry for your experience.

    I am grateful that have never had that happen to me.

    Good that you are doing better!!!
    thank you so much for this, babe! you are so sweet.
    the only thing that still lingers? is i have trust issues, now. hopefully, i'll learn to let my guard down ...
    hope you are doing well!
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    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Tranquille View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!

    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    It's about control. The lying is to keep you focused on them. Telling you that a co-worker passed away ensures that he maintains your attention and sympathy. It is a manipulative tool. Usually this is accompanied by trying to draw you away from your friends and family.

    Or worse, they do things to show you just how much they love you. Sometimes towards the people they know you love and they tell you why they are doing it. Because they love you so much. And then they start to point things out to you that they observed, lies designed to make you trust them and not your loved ones. They then start keeping tabs on you. If you are out without them, they call you and sms you constantly, you know... just to check in. To keep telling you how much they love you. What friends and family you have left tell you how lucky you are to have someone who loves you that much. That they let you do these things with them, without him. Until he starts to lie about them as well and point things out to you that he knows would make you turn away from them.

    The lies are designed to manipulate you and your emotions.

    By the time you leave, by the time you realise, you start on this journey of asking yourself where it all went wrong. What could you have done differently. And you start to break things down into little pieces and you start to see the lies. And the worst pain commences after you realise just how much you were taken in by the lies. And the cycle of self blame begins.

    That is probably why the healing takes a while.
    this post was phenomenal, thank you so much. i have tears in my eyes reading it. it brings back a lot. but, i don't have emotional attachment to it all, anymore...but i just remember things from time to time...your words here are so very comforting.

    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!


    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    I am sorry for your experience.

    I am grateful that have never had that happen to me.

    Good that you are doing better!!!
    thank you so much for this, babe! you are so sweet.
    the only thing that still lingers? is i have trust issues, now. hopefully, i'll learn to let my guard down ...
    hope you are doing well!
    One needs to use our brain, along with our hearts.

    You will know, in your heart, and with your brain, when to trust.

    If something seems to hit a warning signal? Then listen and evaluate that signal.

    We have all been hurt in some way in life, in those lines, and some more extensively than others.

    But to be afraid to love, or let it in, isn't good either.

    Be open, and trust that your experience has taught you enough to send up red flags!

    I am ok.

    Today was my nephews 39th birthday. I am quite emotional.

    Riding a major high from my success last night of my first ever show that I produced and acted in, that was a huge success, with a sold out crowd and people turned away.......

    and then the other side.....grieving and feeling for my sister's loss of her only child...

    Funny how life hands you this euphoria and then the sobering reality that is well *laughing* REALITY!

    However on a high note.

    My husband got home early today and there was a doorbell ring.

    He answered it and here is someone who he doesn't know at all. She introduced herself as one of our elderly neighbors (a few acres down) daughter, who is taking care of her father.

    She came to see me, and tell me personally how much she loved our performance and how it touched her.

    It made my day.

    My performance was dedicated to my nephew.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    To wegs

    Sorry, but you are wrong in saying psychopath and sociopath are different. They are identical. Any difference is purely in the emotional connotations. It is like saying that 'female dog' and 'bitch' are different. The word 'bitch' carries certain emotional connotations, but is still an exact synonym for 'female dog'. Sociopath is a word we are more likely to apply to a ruthless businessman, and psychopath to a serial killer. But the syndrome and the definition are identical. It is just a slightly different emotional connotation.

    .
    There are clear differences. Not like one is bad and the other isn't, but one will behave differently from the other, and misidentifying them can prevent you from fore seeing what they'll do. They're different flavors of evil.

    I like to say Hitler was a psychopath. Stalin was a sociopath.

    Stalin didn't get off on all the killing that happened under his rule, like the hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian farmers who starved, or anything like that. He did it because it was a zero importance issue to him. It was a means to his ends.

    I'm pretty sure Hitler got off on the killing of Jews, though. It was an end unto itself. Hitler would have killed them even if it didn't help his plans.
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    To Kojax

    Psychopathy and sociopathy are the same.
    There is a tendency to use the word sociopath to mean the milder versions, and psychopathy to mean such beings as serial killers. But that is not a technical difference, just a habit of speech that is not even shared by everyone.

    There are not two different versions of this mental condition. In fact. psychopaths come in a continuum of different flavors, just as normal people do. But they all share the same features of lack of empathy, lack of conscience, willingness to do anything as long as it benefits them and they are not likely to get punished for it and so on.

    Those pathological personalities who indulge in murder, sadism etc are doing so because they are stupid, and because they are warped. But this warping is not characteristic of psychopathy, except that the lack of conscience of a psychopath may make such evil deeds a bit more likely. In fact, 3 out of every 100 people are psychopaths, but serial killers are less than 1 in a million. Dealing with psychopaths is almost an everyday experience but dealing with serial killers and extreme sadists is not.
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    There are clearly subtle differences. A psychopath doesn't always act out of a desire to benefit themselves. A sociopath does.

    Psychopathy is a special kind of evil, because it's not necessarily self interested in a material sense. Self worshipping maybe. A psychopath is after a certain emotional feeling. Killing gives it to them for a moment. A sociopath is after the same things the rest of us are after: power, glory, fame.... etc. They just have zero conscience about how they get it.

    A psychopath may secretly capture and torture small animals, knowing they have absolutely nothing to gain if they are caught, and everything to lose. A sociopath wouldn't do that.
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    Kojax

    You are not talking of a psychopath. You are talking of a sadist. They are not the same. Psychopathy and sociopathy are characterised by a lack of caring, not a desire to inflict pain. Certainly a psychopath may also be a sadist, just as a science buff like you and I might also be a sadist. But the words do not mean the same thing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    Kojax

    You are not talking of a psychopath. You are talking of a sadist. They are not the same. Psychopathy and sociopathy are characterised by a lack of caring, not a desire to inflict pain. Certainly a psychopath may also be a sadist, just as a science buff like you and I might also be a sadist. But the words do not mean the same thing.
    In fairness, whether or not a psychopath and a sociopath are identical is disputed heavily within the psychiatric community, one if not both of you have stated this. Yet both are claiming their view to be fact. I think this is an issue where its best to just agree it is highly debated. Both sides of the debate make good arguments but I think it seems to be coming down to semantics.

    I have been trying to find out what exactly the DSM-IV and DSM-V say in regards to both sociopathy and psychopathy,but without buying either manual I can't seem to see the actual text of the dsm anywhere. But I have been able to see the table of contents for the DSM-V and it seems from the chapter titles alone APD and Psychopathy are being treated as synonyms. And there are no chapters called sociopathy or including the term.

    Perhaps they are starting to generalize things more rather than sorting things out by the tiniest detail considering that Aspergers is no longer a separate condition but is now part of the Autism Spectrum Disorder.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    To wegs

    Sorry, but you are wrong in saying psychopath and sociopath are different. They are identical. Any difference is purely in the emotional connotations. It is like saying that 'female dog' and 'bitch' are different. The word 'bitch' carries certain emotional connotations, but is still an exact synonym for 'female dog'. Sociopath is a word we are more likely to apply to a ruthless businessman, and psychopath to a serial killer. But the syndrome and the definition are identical. It is just a slightly different emotional connotation.

    To babe

    About the guy who murdered your niece. I could not guess whether he wa a psychopath or not. I would need more information even to make an informed guess. Lack of remorse means nothing. In my personal view, the amount of remorse a criminal shows mostly reflects how good an actor he is. An intelligent psychopath would probably put on a great show of remorse.
    Sorry to not respond for awhile, but had to think if I wanted to share the "events".

    1. He cut the phone lines.
    2. He threw her through a glass door.
    3. He put a 9" knife wound in her chest.
    4. He watched her bleed out.
    5. He called 911 to report an accident and hid the murder weapon, which was later found. (two months later)
    6. Police said, that if her 2 year old had been there, they believe he would have killed my nephew also.

    That pretty much sums it up.
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Tranquille View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!

    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    It's about control. The lying is to keep you focused on them. Telling you that a co-worker passed away ensures that he maintains your attention and sympathy. It is a manipulative tool. Usually this is accompanied by trying to draw you away from your friends and family.

    Or worse, they do things to show you just how much they love you. Sometimes towards the people they know you love and they tell you why they are doing it. Because they love you so much. And then they start to point things out to you that they observed, lies designed to make you trust them and not your loved ones. They then start keeping tabs on you. If you are out without them, they call you and sms you constantly, you know... just to check in. To keep telling you how much they love you. What friends and family you have left tell you how lucky you are to have someone who loves you that much. That they let you do these things with them, without him. Until he starts to lie about them as well and point things out to you that he knows would make you turn away from them.

    The lies are designed to manipulate you and your emotions.

    By the time you leave, by the time you realise, you start on this journey of asking yourself where it all went wrong. What could you have done differently. And you start to break things down into little pieces and you start to see the lies. And the worst pain commences after you realise just how much you were taken in by the lies. And the cycle of self blame begins.

    That is probably why the healing takes a while.
    this post was phenomenal, thank you so much. i have tears in my eyes reading it. it brings back a lot. but, i don't have emotional attachment to it all, anymore...but i just remember things from time to time...your words here are so very comforting.

    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by wegs View Post
    Yes, all the lies. Pathological lying.

    And I didn't find out most of them until we were over. That is why healing took a while. The strangest lie he told me was that a coworker of his committed suicide. I found out later it was a lie. There were so many to name but why lie about that?

    Thankfully....we are away from them, BR!


    Pain is a good teacher. You won't forget the lesson.
    I am sorry for your experience.

    I am grateful that have never had that happen to me.

    Good that you are doing better!!!
    thank you so much for this, babe! you are so sweet.
    the only thing that still lingers? is i have trust issues, now. hopefully, i'll learn to let my guard down ...
    hope you are doing well!
    One needs to use our brain, along with our hearts.

    You will know, in your heart, and with your brain, when to trust.

    If something seems to hit a warning signal? Then listen and evaluate that signal.

    We have all been hurt in some way in life, in those lines, and some more extensively than others.

    But to be afraid to love, or let it in, isn't good either.

    Be open, and trust that your experience has taught you enough to send up red flags!

    I am ok.

    Today was my nephews 39th birthday. I am quite emotional.

    Riding a major high from my success last night of my first ever show that I produced and acted in, that was a huge success, with a sold out crowd and people turned away.......

    and then the other side.....grieving and feeling for my sister's loss of her only child...

    Funny how life hands you this euphoria and then the sobering reality that is well *laughing* REALITY!

    However on a high note.

    My husband got home early today and there was a doorbell ring.

    He answered it and here is someone who he doesn't know at all. She introduced herself as one of our elderly neighbors (a few acres down) daughter, who is taking care of her father.

    She came to see me, and tell me personally how much she loved our performance and how it touched her.

    It made my day.

    My performance was dedicated to my nephew.
    This post touched me so much, you are a very dear soul...I can sense it through your posts. My thoughts are going out to you this day...and thereafter. ((hugs))
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  99. #98  
    ***** Participant Write4U's Avatar
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    I would quickly find a phone booth and change my clothes. Then fly down from the bridge, pick up the train and gently set it down past the point where the people were bound.
    Then everyone would cheer and with a wink to the prettiest girl, I would raise a fist to the heavens and fly....fly....fly away.
    Everyone would ask, "who was that man?" and someone would answer, that was Psychopath!
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  100. #99  
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    To sea gypsy

    You are very correct in saying that the supposed distinction between psychopath and sociopath is a matter for wide debate among psychiatric circles.

    This is not the only thing. Psychiatry is not yet truly a science, in that it deals with a wide range of conditions that have no measurable basis. They deal with perceived symptoms. A person with one set of symptoms is said to suffer from a specific psychosis. However, psychiatrists themselves know all too well, and painfully well, this proves nothing. Until something can be discovered that can be measured empirically, the reality of all these psychoses and neuroses will remain a matter of debate. Many will, no doubt, later be determined to be simply part of the broad spectrum of human variability.

    What I am saying is that a few psychiatrists wanting to draw a distinction does not impress me in the least. Until there is a scientifically tenable reason to draw a distinction (which there is not) I will regard pyschopathy and sociopathy to be the same. The solid empirical evidence suggests that to be true.
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  101. #100  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    To sea gypsy

    You are very correct in saying that the supposed distinction between psychopath and sociopath is a matter for wide debate among psychiatric circles.

    This is not the only thing. Psychiatry is not yet truly a science, in that it deals with a wide range of conditions that have no measurable basis. They deal with perceived symptoms. A person with one set of symptoms is said to suffer from a specific psychosis. However, psychiatrists themselves know all too well, and painfully well, this proves nothing. Until something can be discovered that can be measured empirically, the reality of all these psychoses and neuroses will remain a matter of debate. Many will, no doubt, later be determined to be simply part of the broad spectrum of human variability.

    What I am saying is that a few psychiatrists wanting to draw a distinction does not impress me in the least. Until there is a scientifically tenable reason to draw a distinction (which there is not) I will regard pyschopathy and sociopathy to be the same. The solid empirical evidence suggests that to be true.
    I think with advances in neurology and the technology making it possible to measure brain function and stimulation psychology will become less of a "soft science" and one of more solid methods. I agree that psychology, lacks a lot of what makes science science, but due to the delicate nature of the organ in question, there is relatively little that can be done in terms of testing for solid evidence. But they are making progress with new technology and understanding the effects of different chemicals on the brain and then behavior. With fMRIs available and synthetic hormones and the coorelations made between hormonal embalances and behavior they are making more progress in identifying illnesses and treating them. To me though, the labels are just a means of describing the various intensities of a particular illness.

    It like the difference between walking and running. They are both forward motion of a pedestrian. One is just faster than the other. I think that in common lay language and even with every psychiatrist I have ever had and known, they all tend to refer to the violent killer types as psychopath and sociopath as the ones that just manipulate but manage to do it without breaking any major laws.

    It does seem that the DSM 5 is more in favor of generalizing everything rather broadly. I personally think this is a move that will prevent people from getting diagnosed. I would much rather be referred to as a sociopath than a psychopath. Simply because in common talk when you hear psychopath, most people instantly think serial killer.... actually, I think Id rather be a psychopath. I respect serial killers more than those who just leach off of people for years and years and manage to make their victims feel sorry for them. At least a serial killer makes their view of you known pretty quick and you, as a victim, are never left confused as to whether or not you deserved what they did to you.

    But then I really really hate deception in any form. That's why I respect hookers but not sluts. At least hookers are not pretending to be wholesome or like they love you. It's all up front on the table where you stand with them. In reality, there isn't much difference between a prostitute and a spouse. It's just assumed the spouse has only one customer while the prostitute will sell to anyone.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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