Comment: The Sociopath Next Door

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Michael Nystrom's picture

The Sociopath Next Door

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There are people who are out to do evil simply because they do not have a conscience. If you don't believe it, I encourage you to read Martha Stout's book, The Sociopath Next Door. Stout is clinical psychologist on the faculty at Harvard. She estimates that 4% of the human population are without a conscience. Which means that they can do anything at all without feeling guilt, shame or remorse.

These people thus have an "advantage" over normal people like you and I. They will do things that we would never even consider doing, and over time, they learn that they can get away with it because most people, like you, believe in the "well intentioned ignorance theory." Most people give them the benefit of the doubt. "Oh, they mean no harm."

Because of their "advantage" - that they feel no guilt, shame or remorse, these people are the most likely to rise to the top of cut-throat worlds of business and especially politics, where backstabbing and sabotage come in handy in their race up the ladder.

This is my evidence. You said you have "evidence [that] supports the well-intentioned ignorance theory." I am open to inspecting that evidence if you care to share it.

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