Tuesday, June 7, 2011


"The United States corporate and government spheres have become, [Kurt] Vonnegut suggested, a perfect habitat for psychopaths," reminds David Schwartz — The Rise of the Second-String Psychopaths. But now, he suggests, "We are a country who has become second-best, even in the quality of our psychopaths."

This is not the first time I have read that we (and really all countries) are ruled by "people who are smart, personable, and engaging, but who have no consciences" (the textbook definition of what is now called "anti-social personality disorder"). Dr. Schwartz, a psychoanalyst, writes:
    They are not guided by a sense of right or wrong. They seem to be unaffected by the feelings of others, including feelings of distress caused by their actions. Straying from a decent way of treating people, or violating ethical codes causes no anxiety, the anxiety which is what causes the rest of us to moderate our more greedy impulses.
Was Ronald Reagan, for all his imperfections, the last non-psychopath in the Oval Office?

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Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.