[Paleopsych] sociopaths in business

Steve Hovland shovland at mindspring.com
Tue Nov 15 23:41:41 UTC 2005

I can't remember the name of the book, but some time
ago some people wrote a book claiming that our child-
rearing practices were creating an increased number
of sociopaths- empathy impaired.  When I think about
children killing children these days, I think they
were right.

So I think the supply has changed and the rules
have chained as well.  Those of us who don't like
Bush may want to reflect on the idea that he
represents a composite portrait of the American


-----Original Message-----
From: paleopsych-bounces at paleopsych.org
[mailto:paleopsych-bounces at paleopsych.org]On Behalf Of Michael
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2005 11:34 AM
To: paleopsych at paleopsych.org
Subject: [Paleopsych] sociopaths in business

Frank says:
>>But how did it come to pass that "greedy 
psychotics" took over the business world?<<

--If it's true that sociopaths have had an advantage
in any field, it would likely have been due to an
ability to "play the game" better, to manipulate
social networks more effectively than those who
concentrated on ability or ethics. And strategies that
get results tend to spread throughout a culture,
regardless of whether those strategies are ecological
or predatory. If it undermines long term stability,
that's just the outcome of everyone's short term

>>More seriously, what is there about the 
*current* rules of business that result in "greedy
psychotics" taking over? Have the rules changed? Has
the supply of "greedy psychotics" increased? If so,

--It's possible that sociopaths eventually learn to
exploit *any* social system, if everyone else falls
asleep or is too busy focusing on personal advantage.
Perhaps sociopaths exploit everyone else's minor
flaws. It may not be the official rules that are the
problem, but rather the unofficial culture, the web of
personal connections and communication styles. As I
said, I have no reason to believe the problem is
confined to business, since I've seen groups with
little power or money fall under the same spell.

>>I urge you to always think about processes and 
the rules governing those processes.<<

--Good advice. The faces change, but the underlying
processes remain.


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