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"Psychopaths" New Research & Studies.
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AngelAliceOffline
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PostPosted: 18-02-2009 22:25    Post subject: Reply with quote

river_styx wrote:
But then you enter into the question of behavioural science.

Do I act the way I do because society expects it of me or because it's how I choose to act?

I have been conditioned to respond in sociably acceptable ways by interacting with my peers and family group. If I do something that is not right I know this by way of their reaction and respond accordingly.

Isn't that the same as a psychopath?

I guess it goes back to the earlier statement that really we're all psychopaths. Just some are a little more extreme.


There may be a sliding scale in such matters, of course. But I can't really see the use of your philosophical position really, which just seems to be muddying for the sake of it. 'Normal' human beings do have innate moral instincts (even if society might have to fine tune them), 'psychopaths' do not, by definition. You don't have to be taught not to leave your child in a burning building, or not to murder you mother because her death would leave you her money; you simply would not, or could not do such things. A psychopath could and possibly would.
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 06-08-2010 12:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Economic status, genetics together influence psychopathic traits
http://www.physorg.com/news200227486.html
August 5th, 2010 in Medicine & Health / Psychology & Psychiatry

Researchers studying the genetic roots of antisocial behavior report that children with one variant of a serotonin transporter gene are more likely to exhibit psychopathic traits if they also grow up poor.

The study, the first to identify a specific gene associated with psychopathic tendencies in youth, appears this month in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology.

People with psychopathic traits generally are more callous and unemotional than their peers, said University of Illinois psychology professor Edelyn Verona, whose graduate student Naomi Sadeh led the study.

"Those with psychopathic traits tend to be less attached to others, even if they have relationships with them," Verona said. "They are less reactive to emotional things in the lab. They are charming and grandiose at times. They're better at conning and manipulating others, and they have low levels of empathy and remorse."

Although psychopathy is considered abnormal, these traits may be useful in certain circumstances, Verona said.

"For example, these folks tend to have less anxiety and are less prone to depression," she said, qualities that might be useful in dangerous or unstable environments. In most cases, their cognitive abilities are also intact.

Studies of psychopathy often focus on those in prison for violent crimes, but most people who commit such crimes are not psychopathic, Verona said.

Unlike the detached, methodical psychopath, violent offenders are often highly emotional and impulsive, and their cognitive abilities are sometimes impaired.

Early research on psychopathy sometimes confused these two "subtypes," Verona said. "But our research suggests that offenders are very heterogeneous in terms of causal factors," she said. "That means that although they end up in similar places, they don't get there through the same pathway."

The new research focused on two variants of the serotonin transporter protein gene. This gene codes for a protein that transports serotonin from the synapse into presynaptic neurons. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that regulates mood, sleep and other functions including memory and learning.

The two variants, or alleles, of the serotonin transporter protein gene differ in length. The longer allele produces more of the transporter protein, which researchers suspect results in more serotonin being shuttled out of the synapse. How this affects brain function is unclear, however; less serotonin in the synapse could mean less - or more - serotonin in the brain.

Previous studies have found that those who are highly impulsive and aggressive tend to have less brain serotonin than their peers, while people with psychopathic traits generally have higher brain serotonin levels.

Other research has found an association between the highly impulsive personality type and the shorter allele on the serotonin transport protein gene.

In two separate studies, Verona, Sadeh and their colleagues found that pubescent and prepubescent children with the longer alleles for the transporter gene scored higher than other children on psychopathic traits if they also had low socioeconomic status. These children reportedly exhibited less empathy, they were more prone to arrogance and deceitfulness and were less emotionally responsive to negative events than their peers. In contrast, youth with the long alleles who also had high socioeconomic status scored very low on psychopathic traits - suggesting that the long allele is susceptible to socioeconomic environment, "for better or for worse."

Children carrying the short alleles for the same gene scored higher on impulsivity, regardless of their socioeconomic status, the researchers found.

"This is the first genetic evidence that these two types have different origins," Verona said.

Provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
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HollyDolly1Offline
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PostPosted: 11-08-2010 20:58    Post subject: pyschopaths and new study Reply with quote

OldTimeRadio wrote:
One of the very greatest of American professional baseball players, long enshrined in the Hall of Fame, is considered by many to have been a psychopath.

So the question arises - how ever does a psychopath manage to rise to all-time greatness in a TEAM sport?


I believe you are talking about Ty Cobb. Maybe by somehow contraoling their urges for murder and mayhem and using the sport to get what they want?
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Black River FallsOffline
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PostPosted: 11-08-2010 22:20    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don;t see the problem. Even in the complete absence of empathy or consideration for anyone elses feelings, he'd still have the same choice as anyone else whether to play by the rules and whether to co-operate.

Also may have been a very good actor, as many of them seem to be.
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MythopoeikaOffline
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PostPosted: 11-08-2010 23:56    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are a lot of psychopaths about who seem to blend into the normal population. I've certainly had at least 2 bosses who might qualify as psychopaths.
They don't all kill or maim or do overtly criminal things.
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escargot1Offline
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PostPosted: 14-12-2013 21:12    Post subject: Reply with quote

On now - Channel 4's Psychopath Night

Quote:
Psychopath Night unravels the mystery of psychopaths, exploring how their minds work, counting down the top ten movie psychopaths and revealing familiar faces on the psychopathic scale


Shocked
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 14-12-2013 21:21    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking good so far.
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escargot1Offline
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PostPosted: 14-12-2013 21:56    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bungee - yes or no?
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escargot1Offline
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PostPosted: 14-12-2013 22:46    Post subject: Reply with quote

*boooiiinnnnggggggg*
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 15-12-2013 02:17    Post subject: Reply with quote

How dare they suggest James Bond id a psychopath! Only a few days ago other doctors were saying hes an alcoholic.
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PeniGOffline
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PostPosted: 15-12-2013 02:45    Post subject: Reply with quote

The two are not mutually exclusive. It wouldn't surprise me a bit to find he was both.

(To be fair, never read the books. Have tried to watch several of the movies, to be social; they bore me witless.)
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CochiseOffline
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PostPosted: 15-12-2013 12:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

To be honest, I think everyone is a potential psychopath and it only takes the right (edit: sorry - wrong!) circumstances to bring it out. Fortunately the circumstances are uncommon. I wouldn't go so far as 'rare' - I also have worked for and with people who are clearly psychotic.

I also had as a house guest for a while a convicted murderer who was out on license and entirely sane - also a very good poet.

Wide education - especially history - and good upbringing are the best defences. Not guaranteed, but the best we have.

2nd edit - yes, Ty Cobb was likely a psychopath - I've read his biography - but looking at his family circumstances it isn't totally surprising - even the experiences of his baseball career likely reinforced his behaviour.
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OneWingedBirdOffline
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PostPosted: 15-12-2013 12:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

I won't say too much in case of spoilering, but if anyone's been following the first half of Season 4 of The Walking Dead, the portrayal of the Governor is really quite frighteningly spot on for what psychopaths in real life are like - particularly a lot of the manipulation.
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ramonmercadoOffline
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PostPosted: 15-12-2013 12:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

PeniG wrote:
The two are not mutually exclusive. It wouldn't surprise me a bit to find he was both.

(To be fair, never read the books. Have tried to watch several of the movies, to be social; they bore me witless.)


Maybe that was a bit of faux outrage on my part. The books written by Fleming are pretty good afaicr.
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sherbetbizarreOffline
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PostPosted: 15-12-2013 12:49    Post subject: Reply with quote

After last nights programme, Channel 4 have their own Psychopath Test -

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/psychopath-night

- where I scored a lowly 28%.

Apparently the male average is 50%, and test results show Financial Times readers average out at 68%! So there's still a few Patrick Bateman's out there...
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