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Psychopaths

December 11, 2014

Maybe a useful definition of “psychopath” is Andrew Sullivan’s recent observation, in view of Bush II’s response to the torture report, that Bush is a person who doesn’t have a conscience and is proud of it. Dick Cheney seems to me to be similar, except that I’ve often wondered if Cheney is aware of not having a conscience. I don’t know these people personally, I’m just inferring from their behavior.* I suspect that Cheney, like Henry Kissinger, simply thinks of himself as beyond question[ing]. I think there are also persons who have a conscience and are proud of themselves when they hurt a lot of other people in service to their own self-interest. The Koch Bros appear to me to be examples. At any rate, I think we are up against psychopaths in high places (and lots of enabling sociopaths) at this moment in American history. We must hope that only a few Americans fall under their influence, and that a lot of Americans come to resist.

Compare the people above, with two presidents who directly endangered democracy, but whom I don’t see as psychopathic. I think Richard Nixon was simply crooked to his core, and Ronald Reagan was ignorant, ideologically brainwashed, and vulnerable to manipulation.

*12/15 Chuck Todd asks if 25% of detainees being innocent is too high a margin of error for justification of use of torture. Cheney: “I have no problem as long as we achieve our objective.” The doubling down of self-defense by Cheney and his enablers shows how much they are invested in maintaining their own moral innocence. Why this depth of “denial”? Are they psychologically so “well-defended” that they are incapable of allowing the slightest crack in their armor? What do they fear so much? What do they hope to gain?

And how much reality can powerless persons have in the mind of a person like Dick Cheney?  If he renders them powerless enough, do they go away entirely?

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  1. He Lives! My Man Dick | tomkoontz

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