A sociopath is a human that isn’t quite, well, human. A thing in a human body that lacks empathy, but has a powerful drive to amass power. Alternatively narcissism is a sociopath who amasses the adoration of others to amass power.
Robert Heinlein was quoted as saying, “Man is not a rational animal, man is an animal who rationalizes.”
With the election of 2016 in full heat, a month from the polls, Donald Trumps comments “grab them by the pussy” is ripping apart the social media landscape. But does Donald care? Not really. The people who are offended, deeply offended, weren’t going to vote for him anyway. The people who are, are going to explain away his comment one way or another.
Because pretty much anyone who runs for president is a sociopath, or narcissist. Do you think George W. Bush was just a clueless dupe who let Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld talk him into a war in Iraq that the United States didn’t need? Or Obama needing to “liberate” Libya and Syria?
This article has a few logical flaws, but I’m pretty convinced that the vast majority of politicians in America are now certifiable sociopaths: https://www.caseyresearch.com/articles/ascendence-sociopaths-us-governance
Scott Adams, who manages to simultaneously piss off the left and the right depending on what subject he writes about, has this time managed to feel the wrath of the Democrat Machine: http://blog.dilbert.com/post/151301555066/the-week-i-became-a-target
Please not what those two authors say about manipulation, and how it works. I won’t say anything as stupid as “you are being manipulated! wake up sheeple!” simply because every con requires the willing participation of the mark. Cons exist because people aren’t rational, people want to believe that good fortune has smiled upon them. People want to believe in “hope” and “change.”
And that is why politics in America has become so polarized. The manipulation isn’t just through the newspapers, like it was in the Civil War. It wasn’t just through newspapers, radio and cinema news reals like it was during the Great Depression. It wasn’t just through newspapers, radio, and television like it was during the Civil Rights Movement. Now it is constant to whatever level of connection you feel like making with the global information grid spreading binary data across the glob at the speed of light. You control what messages you receive, and this has created a world where people are choosing to not listen to the other side.
This is such an interesting phenomena for information scientists. The world isn’t fighting over facts right now, but vision. From the global warming debate to refugees people aren’t talking facts, people are gathering logical fallacies to make their own opinion seem strong and belittle anything else. People who do this want leaders who tell them that they are right, and good people, and that the world would be a better place if only those hatey haters would just die.
America is getting conned. Because we, collectively, want to be conned. And this is because as H.L. Mencken said “Democracy is the theory that common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.”
Do I believe that we could make things better? No. None of the fixes to our current problem are going to be fixed by the current power structure. From changing the 17th Amendment back so the States appoint Senators to restricting the voting franchise only to taxpayers, none of these things can happen under the current political system.
America is an empire in decline. How long the decline lasts? I don’t know.