There is a subgroup of human beings that walk unnamed among us. They are called sociopaths or psychopaths. These individuals cause a great deal of pain to other human beings in the world through their cruelty, manipulation, deception and power plays.
Beth Rogers-Doll, Ph.D., “How to Recognize a Sociopath.”
As Chris Christie plows forward with his quest to control the free world, the time has come to revisit and give serious attention to the proposition that Christie is a sociopath.
From the American Psychiatric Association Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), which clinically labels sociopathy as Antisocial Personality Disorder:
Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder frequently lack empathy and tend to be callous, cynical, and contemptuous of the feelings, rights and sufferings of others. They may have an inflated and arrogant self-appraisal and may be excessively opinionated, self-assured or cocky. They may display glib, superficial charm and can be quite voluble and verbally facile (e.g., using technical terms or jargon that might impress someone who is unfamiliar with the topic). Lack of empathy, inflated self-appraisal, and superficial charm are features that have been commonly included in traditional conceptions of psychopathy that may be particularly distinguishing of the disorder.
He’s not simply a narcissist, as often has been suggested. It’s actually much, much worse. Again, from the DSM:
Other personality disorders may be confused with Antisocial Personality Disorder because they have certain features in common. Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder share a tendency to be tough-minded, glib, superficial, exploitative and unempathetic. However, Narcissistic Personality Disorder does not include characteristics of impulsivity, aggression and deceit. Deceit and manipulation are central features of Antisocial Personality Disorder. Persons with Antisocial Personality Disorder are manipulative to gain profit, power or some other material gratification.
According to Dr. Rogers-Doll:
Criminal behavior is nothing to a sociopath who craves money and power. And although a number of sociopaths are in prison…there are just as many who never get caught at criminal activities. Still others live unethical and immoral lives….Though many sociopathic people are quite intelligent, they often overestimate their own intelligence. They often wind up in positions of authority, unfortunately, because they crave power over others.
Sociopaths are extremely charming and charismatic. Their personalities are described as magnetic, and they generate a lot of attention and praise from others. Sociopaths are great orators.
Sociopaths have delusions of grandeur, and feel overly entitled to certain positions, people and things. They believe that their own beliefs and opinions are the absolute authority, and they disregard the opinions of others.
Sociopaths are rarely shy, insecure, or at a loss for words. They have trouble suppressing emotional responses like anger, impatience, or annoyance, and they lash out at others and respond hastily to these emotions.
Sociopaths are professional liars. They fabricate stories and make outlandish, untruthful statements, but are able to make these lies sound convincing with their confidence and assertiveness.
Sociopaths are incapable of experiencing guilt or shame for their actions. They rarely apologize for their behavior. While aware of the emotional, physical, and financial repercussions of their actions on others, they just don’t care. They pursue any action that serves their own self-interest even if it harms others.
Sociopaths are manipulative. They constantly try to influence and dominate the people around them, and tend to seek positions of leadership. They are only concerned with their own interests, and use compassion as a tool to manipulate others, but are not genuinely compassionate.
Sociopaths often respond to accusations regarding their behavior with threats, attacks, and excuses.
“The most shocking characteristic that we encounter in the mind of the sociopath,” writes Dr. Rogers-Doll, “is the lack of a conscience….Meanwhile, they manipulate others, destroy lives and wreak havoc.”
Sound like anybody we know?