[ExI] Implications of Sociopath Testing

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Thu Aug 21 13:14:49 UTC 2008

2008/8/21 Lee Corbin <lcorbin at rawbw.com>:

> Certainly, but this is also exactly how it is at the present time. I'm
> wondering if having exact knowledge---just for the purpose here
> of establishing principle---that a criminal about to be sentenced is
> actually a sociopath (e.g. has no conscience and is completely
> incapable of remorse or sympathy with other living things), makes
> a difference to you.
> In my view, it would make an extreme difference. Since we
> now know that this individual means only harm to others, then
> he must be placed in monitored community with only other
> known sociopaths, or executed forthwith.

It's generally quite easy in clinical practice or in everyday life to
detect a sociopath if you have much to do with them. I suppose a
motivated sociopath might be able to fool someone when put through a
one off assessment, but for the most part they don't even attempt to
hide their true nature. If you think about it, sociopathy isn't even
particularly unacceptable in many situations. In a business
transaction, each party knows that the other party is only out to get
what they can for themselves, and each party knows that the other
party is only behaving honestly because they judge that they have more
to gain that way. Sociopaths simply take this strategy and apply it to
every aspect of their lives, and if they start off with any brains,
quickly work out that violent crime doesn't pay well. In fact,
intelligent sociopaths are more likely to become successful
businessmen and politicians, because they don't let sentimentality get
in the way of career-advancing decisions. So although sociopaths are
more likely than average to commit violent crimes, it does not follow
that they need to be locked up because they will definitely do so.

Stathis Papaioannou

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