by Laura Knight-Jadczyk
November 28, 2005
Andrew M. Lobaczewski
Pathocracy is a disease of great social movements followed by entire
societies, nations, and empires. In the course of human history, it has
affected social, political, and religious movements as well as the
accompanying ideologies… and turned them into caricatures of
themselves…. This occurred as a result of the … participation of
pathological agents in a pathodynamically similar process.
why all the pathocracies of the world are, and have been, so similar in
their essential properties.
…Identifying these phenomena through history and properly qualifying
them according to their true nature and contents - not according to the
ideology in question, which succumbed to the process of caricaturization
- is a job for historians. […]
The actions of [pathocracy] affect an entire society, starting with the
leaders and infiltrating every town, business, and institution. The
pathological social structure gradually covers the entire country
creating a “new class” within that nation.
This privileged class [of pathocrats] feels permanently threatened by the “others”, i.e. by the
majority of normal people. Neither do the pathocrats entertain any
illusions about their personal fate should there be a return to the
system of normal man.
Andrew M. Lobaczewski
Political Ponerology: A science on the
nature of evil adjusted for political purposes
The word “psychopath” generally evokes images of
the barely restrained - yet surprisingly urbane - Dr. Hannibal Lecter of
“Silence of the Lambs” fame. I will admit that this was the image that came
to my mind whenever I heard the word.
But I was wrong, and I was to learn
this lesson quite painfully by direct experience. The exact details are
chronicled elsewhere; what is important is that this experience was probably
one of the most painful and instructive episodes of my life and it enabled
me to overcome a block in my awareness of the world around me and those who
Regarding blocks to awareness, I need to state for the record that I have
spent 30 years studying psychology, history, culture, religion, myth and the
so-called paranormal. I also have worked for many years with
which gave me a very good mechanical knowledge of how the mind/brain of the
human being operates at very deep levels. But even so, I was still operating
with certain beliefs firmly in place that were shattered by my research into
psychopathy. I realized that there was a certain set of ideas that I held
about human beings that were sacrosanct.
I even wrote about this once in the
…my work has shown me that the vast majority of people want to do good, to
experience good things, think good thoughts, and make decisions with good
results. And they try with all their might to do so! With the majority of
people having this internal desire, why the Hell isn't it happening?
I was naïve, I admit. There were many things I did not know that I have
learned since I penned those words. But even at that time I was aware of how
our own minds can be used to deceive us.
Now, what beliefs did I hold that made me a victim of a psychopath? The
first and most obvious one is that I truly believed that deep inside, all
people are basically “good” and that they,
“want to do good, to experience
good things, think good thoughts, and make decisions with good results. And
they try with all their might to do so…”
As it happens, this is not true as I - and everyone involved in our working
group - learned to our sorrow, as they say. But we also learned to our
edification. In order to come to some understanding of exactly what kind of
human being could do the things that were done to me (and others close to
me), and why they might be motivated - even driven - to behave this way, we
began to research the psychology literature for clues because we needed to
understand for our own peace of mind.
If there is a psychological theory that can explain vicious and harmful
behavior, it helps very much for the victim of such acts to have this
information so that they do not have to spend all their time feeling hurt or
angry. And certainly, if there is a psychological theory that helps a person
to find what kind of words or deeds can bridge the chasm between people, to
heal misunderstandings, that is also a worthy goal. It was from such a
perspective that we began our extensive work on the subjects of narcissism
which then led to the study of psychopathy.
Of course, we didn’t start out with such a “diagnosis” or label for what we
We started out with observations and searched the
literature for clues, for profiles, for anything that would help us to
understand the inner world of a human being - actually a group of human
beings - who seemed to be utterly depraved and unlike anything we had ever
Imagine - if you can - not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of
guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the
well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no
struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what
kind of selfish, lazy, harmful, or immoral action you had taken.
And pretend that the concept of responsibility is unknown to you, except as
a burden others seem to accept without question, like gullible fools.
Now add to this strange fantasy the ability to conceal from other people
that your psychological makeup is radically different from theirs. Since
everyone simply assumes that conscience is universal among human beings,
hiding the fact that you are conscience-free is nearly effortless.
You are not held back from any of your desires by guilt or shame, and you
are never confronted by others for your cold-bloodedness. The ice water in
your veins is so bizarre, so completely outside of their personal
experience, that they seldom even guess at your condition.
In other words, you are completely free of internal restraints, and your
unhampered liberty to do just as you please, with no pangs of conscience, is
conveniently invisible to the world.
You can do anything at all, and still your strange advantage over the
majority of people, who are kept in line by their consciences will most
likely remain undiscovered.
How will you live your life?
What will you do with your huge and secret advantage, and with the
corresponding handicap of other people (conscience)?
The answer will depend largely on just what your desires happen to be,
because people are not all the same. Even the profoundly unscrupulous are
not all the same. Some people - whether they have a conscience or not -
favor the ease of inertia, while others are filled with dreams and wild
ambitions. Some human beings are brilliant and talented, some are
dull-witted, and most, conscience or not, are somewhere in between. There
are violent people and nonviolent ones, individuals who are motivated by
blood lust and those who have no such appetites. [...]
Provided you are not forcibly stopped, you can do anything at all.
If you are born at the right time, with some access to family fortune, and
you have a special talent for whipping up other people's hatred and sense of
deprivation, you can arrange to kill large numbers of unsuspecting people.
With enough money, you can accomplish this from far away, and you can sit
back safely and watch in satisfaction. [...]
Crazy and frightening - and real, in about 4 percent of the population....
The prevalence rate for anorexic eating disorders is estimated a 3.43
percent, deemed to be nearly epidemic, and yet this figure is a fraction
lower than the rate for antisocial personality. The high-profile disorders
classed as schizophrenia occur in only about 1 percent of [the population] -
a mere quarter of the rate of antisocial personality - and the Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention say that the rate of colon cancer in the
United States, considered "alarmingly high," is about 40 per 100,000 - one
hundred times lower than the rate of antisocial personality.
The high incidence of
sociopathy in human society has a profound effect on
the rest of us who must live on this planet, too, even those of us who have
not been clinically traumatized. The individuals who constitute this 4
percent drain our relationships, our bank accounts, our accomplishments, our
self-esteem, our very peace on earth.
Yet surprisingly, many people know nothing about this disorder, or if they
do, they think only in terms of violent psychopathy - murderers, serial
killers, mass murderers - people who have conspicuously broken the law many
times over, and who, if caught, will be imprisoned, maybe even put to death
by our legal system.
We are not commonly aware of, nor do we usually identify, the larger number
of nonviolent sociopaths among us, people who often are not blatant
lawbreakers, and against whom our formal legal system provides little
Most of us would not imagine any correspondence between conceiving an ethnic
genocide and, say, guiltlessly lying to one's boss about a coworker. But the
psychological correspondence is not only there; it is chilling. Simple and
profound, the link is the absence of the inner mechanism that beats up on
us, emotionally speaking, when we make a choice we view as immoral,
unethical, neglectful, or selfish.
Most of us feel mildly guilty if we eat the last piece of cake in the
kitchen, let alone what we would feel if we intentionally and methodically
set about to hurt another person.
Those who have no conscience at all are a group unto themselves, whether
they be homicidal tyrants or merely ruthless social snipers.
The presence or absence of conscience is a deep human division, arguably
more significant than intelligence, race, or even gender.
What differentiates a sociopath who lives off the labors of others from one
who occasionally robs convenience stores, or from one who is a contemporary
robber baron - or what makes the difference between an ordinary bully and a
sociopathic murderer - is nothing more than social status, drive, intellect,
blood lust, or simple opportunity.
What distinguishes all of these people from the rest of us is an utterly
empty hole in the psyche, where there should be the most evolved of all
The Sociopath Next Door
We did not have the advantage of Dr. Stout's book at the beginning of our
We did, of course, have Hare and Cleckley and
and others. There are still more that have appeared in the past couple of
years in response to the questions being formulated by many psychologists
and psychiatrists about the state of our world and the possibility that
there is some essential difference between such individuals as
Bush and many so-called Neocons, and the rest of us.
Dr. Stout's book has one of the longest explanations as to why none of her
examples resemble any actual persons that I have ever read. And then, in a
very early chapter, she describes a "composite" case where the subject spent
his childhood blowing up frogs with fire-crackers.
It is widely known that
George W. Bush did this, so one naturally wonders...
In any event, even without Dr. Stout's work, at the time we were studying
the matter, we realized that what we were learning was very important to
everyone because as the data was assembled, we saw that the clues, the
profiles, revealed that the issues we were facing were faced by everyone at
one time or another, to one extent or another.
We also began to realize that
the profiles that emerged also describe rather accurately many individuals
who seek positions of power in fields of authority, most particularly
politics and commerce. That’s really not so surprising an idea, but it
honestly hadn’t occurred to us until we saw the patterns and recognized them
in the behaviors of numerous historical figures, and lately including George
W. Bush and members of his administration.
Current day statistics tell us that there are more psychologically sick
people than healthy ones. If you take a sampling of individuals in any given
field, you are likely to find that a significant number of them display
pathological symptoms to one extent or another. Politics is no exception,
and by its very nature, would tend to attract more of the pathological
“dominator types” than other fields.
That is only logical, and we began to
realize that it was not only logical, it was horrifyingly accurate;
horrifying because pathology among people in power can have disastrous
effects on all of the people under the control of such pathological
And so, we decided to write about this subject and publish it
on the Internet.
As the material went up, letters from our readers began to come in thanking
us for putting a name to what was happening to them in their personal lives
as well as helping them to understand what was happening in a world that
seems to have gone completely mad.
We began to think that it was an epidemic
and in a certain sense, we were right; just not in the way we thought. If an
individual with a highly contagious illness works in a job that puts them in
contact with the public, an epidemic is the result. In the same way, if an
individual in a position of political power is a psychopath, he or she can
create an epidemic of psychopathology in people who are not, essentially,
psychopathic. Our ideas along this line were soon to receive confirmation
from an unexpected source.
I received an email from a Polish psychologist
who wrote as follows:
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen.
I have got your Special Research Project on psychopathy by my computer. You
are doing a most important and valuable work for the future of nations.[…]
I am a very aged clinical psychologist. Forty years ago I took part in a
secret investigation of the real nature and psychopathology of the
macro-social phenomenon called “Communism”. The other researchers were the
scientists of the previous generation who are now passed away.
The profound study of the nature
psychopathy, which played the essential and
inspirational part in this macro-social psychopathologic phenomenon, and
distinguishing it from other mental anomalies, appeared to be the necessary
preparation for understanding the entire nature of the phenomenon.
The large part of the work, you are doing now, was done in those times. …
I am able to provide you with a most valuable scientific document, useful
for your purposes. It is my book “POLITICAL PONEROLOGY – A science on the
nature of evil adjusted for political purposes”. You may also find copy of
this book in the Library of Congress and in some university and public
libraries in the USA.
Be so kind and contact me so that I may mail a copy to you.
Very truly yours!
Andrew M. Lobaczewski
I promptly wrote a reply. A couple of weeks later the manuscript arrived in
As I read, I realized that what I was holding in my hand was essentially a
chronicle of a descent into hell, transformation, and triumphant return to
the world with knowledge of that hell that was priceless for the rest of us,
particularly in this day and time when it seems evident that a similar hell
is enveloping the planet.
The risks that were taken by the group of
scientists that did the research on which this book is based are beyond the
comprehension of most of us.
Many of them were young, just starting in their
careers when the Nazis began to stride in their hundred league jackboots
across Europe. These researchers lived through that, and then when the Nazis
were driven out and replaced by the Communists under the heel of Stalin,
they faced years of oppression the likes of which those of us today who are
choosing to take a stand against the Bush Reich cannot even imagine. And so,
since they were there, and they lived through it and brought back
information to the rest of us, it may well save our lives to have a map to
guide us in the falling darkness.
It is in this context that I would like to
bring up how Dr. Lobczewski discusses the value of the close and clinical
study of evil in his book before we actually turn to the subject of
This new science is incalculably rich in casuist detail... It contains
knowledge and a description of the phenomenon in the categories of the
natural world-view, correspondingly modified in accordance with the need to
understand [many] matters...
The development of this familiarity with the phenomenon is accompanied by
development of communicative language, by means of which society can stay
informed and issue warnings of danger. A third language thus appears
alongside the ideological doubletalk ... in part, it borrows names used by
the official ideology in their transformed modified meanings. In part, this
language operates with words borrowed from still more lively circulating
In spite of its strangeness, this language becomes a useful means of
communication and plays a part in regenerating societal links. ... However,
in spite of efforts on the part of literati and journalists, this language
remains only communicative inside; it becomes hermetic outside the scope of
the phenomenon, incomprehensible to people lacking the appropriate personal
This new science, expressed in language derived from a deviant reality, is
something foreign to people who wish to understand this macro-social
phenomenon but think in the categories of the countries of normal man.
Attempts to understand this language produce a certain feeling of
helplessness which gives rise to the tendency of creating ones own
doctrines, built from concepts of one's own world and a certain amount of
appropriately co-opted pathocratic propaganda material. Such a doctrine - an
example would be the American anti-Communist doctrine - makes it even more
difficult to understand that other reality. May the objective description
adduced herein enable them to overcome the impasse thus engendered.[...]
The specific role of certain individuals during such times is worth pointing
out; they participated in the discovery of the nature of this new reality
and helped others find the right path. They had a normal nature but an
unfortunate childhood, being subjected very early to the domination of
individuals with various psychological deviations, including pathological
egotism and methods of terrorizing others. The new rulership system struck
such people as a large-scale societal multiplication of what they knew from
From the very outset, they therefore saw this reality
much more prosaically, immediately treating the ideology in accordance with
the paralogistic stories well known to them, whose purpose was to cloak
bitter reality of their youth experiences. They soon reached the truth,
since the genesis and nature of evil are analogous irrespective of the
social scale in which it appears.
Such people are rarely understood in happy societies, but there they became
useful; their explanations and advice proved accurate and were transmitted
to others joining the network of this apperceptive heritage. However, their
own suffering was doubled, since this was too much of a similar kind of
abuse for one life to handle. ...
Finally, society sees the appearance of individuals who have collected
exceptional intuitive perception and practical knowledge in the area of how
pathocrats think and such a system of rule operates.
Some of them become so proficient in the deviant psychopath language and its
idiomatics that they are able to use it, much like a foreign language they
have learned well. Since they are to decipher the rulership's intentions,
such people thereupon offer advice to people who are having trouble with the
authorities. These usually disinterested advocates of the society of normal
people play a irreplaceable role in the life of society.
however, can never learn to think in normal human categories. At the same
time, the ability to predict the ways of reaction of such an authority also
leads to the conclusion that the system is rigidly causative and lacking in
the natural freedom of choice. [...]
I was once referred a patient who had been an inmate in a Nazi concentration
camp. She came back from that hell in such exceptionally good condition that
she was still able to marry and bear three children. However, her
child-rearing methods were so extremely iron-fisted as to be much too
reminiscent of the concentration camp life so stubbornly per-severing in
former prisoners. The children's reaction was neurotic protest and
aggressiveness against other children.
During the mother's psychotherapy, we recalled the figures of male and
female SS officers to her mind, pointing out their psychopathic
characteristics (such people were primary recruits). In order to help her
eliminate their pathological material from her person, I furnished her with
approximate statistical data regarding the appearance of such individuals
within the population as whole. This helped her reach a more objective view
of that reality and reestablish trust in the society of normal people. ...
Parallel to the development of practical knowledge and a language of insider
communication, other psychological phenomena take form; they are truly
significant in the transformation of social life under pathocratic rule, and
discerning them is essential if one wishes to understand individuals and
nations fated to live under such conditions and to evaluate the situation in
the political sphere. They include people's psychological immunization and
their adaptation to life under such deviant conditions.
The methods of
psychological terror (that specific pathocratic art), the
techniques of pathological arrogance, and the striding roughshod into other
people's souls initially have such traumatic effects that people are
deprived of their capacity for purposeful reaction; I have already adduced
the psychophysiological aspects of such states. Ten or twenty years later,
analogous behavior can be recognized as well-known buffoonery and does not
deprive the victim of his ability to think and react purposefully. His
answers are usually well-thought-out strategies, issued from the position of
a normal person's superiority and often laced with ridicule. Man can look
suffering and even death in the eye with the required calm. A dangerous
weapon falls out of ruler's hands.
We have to understand that this process of
immunization is not merely a
result of the above described increase in practical knowledge of the
macro-social phenomenon. It is the effect of a many-layered, gradual process
of growth in knowledge, familiarization with the phenomenon, creation of the
appropriate reactive habits, and self-control, with an overall conception
and moral principles being worked out in the meantime. After several years,
the same stimuli which formerly caused chilly spiritual impotence or mental
paralysis now provoke the desire to gargle with something strong so as to
get rid of this filth.
It was a time, when many people dreamed of finding some pill which would
make it easier to endure dealing with the authorities or attending the
forced indoctrination sessions generally chaired by a psychopathic
character. Some antidepressants did in fact prove to have the desired
effect. Twenty years later, this had been forgotten entirely.
When I was arrested for the first time in 1951, force, arrogance, and
psychopathic methods of forcible confession deprived me almost entirely of
my self-defense capabilities. My brain stopped functioning after only a few
days' arrest without water, to such a point that I couldn't even properly
remember the incident which resulted in my sudden arrest. I was not even
aware that it had been purposely provoked and that conditions permitting
self-defense did in fact exist. They did almost any-thing they wanted to me.
When I was arrested for the last time in 1968, I was interrogated by five
fierce-looking security functionaries. At one particular moment, after
thinking through their predicted reactions, I let my gaze take in each face
sequentially with great attentiveness.
The most important one asked me,
"What's on your mind, buster, staring at us like that?"
I answered without
any fear of consequences:
"I'm just wondering why so many of you gentleman's
careers end up in a psychiatric hospital."
They were taken aback for a
while, whereupon the same man exclaimed,
"Because it's such damned horrible
"I am of the opinion that it's the other way round", I calmly
Then I was taken back to my cell.
Three days later, I had the opportunity to talk to him again, but this time
he was much more respectful. Then he ordered me to be taken away - outside,
as it turned out. I rode the streetcar home past a large park, still unable
to believe my eyes. Once in my room, I lay down on the bed; the world was
not quite real yet, but exhausted people fall asleep quickly.
When I awoke,
I spoke out loud:
"Dear God, aren't you supposed to be in charge here in this
At that time, I knew not only that up to 1/4 of all secret police officials
wind up in psychiatric hospitals. I also knew that their "occupational
disease" is the congestive dementia formerly encountered only among old
prostitutes. Man cannot violate the natural human feelings inside him with
impunity, no matter what kind of profession he performs. From that
view-point, Comrade Captain was partially right. At the same time, however,
my reactions had become resistant, a far cry from what they had been
seventeen years earlier.
All these transformations of human consciousness and unconsciousness result
in individual and collective adaptations to living under such systems. Under
altered conditions of both material and moral limitations, an existential
resourcefulness emerges which is prepared to overcome many difficulties.
new network of the society of normal people is also created for self-help
and mutual assistance.
This society acts in concert and is aware of the true state of affairs; it
begins to develop ways of influencing various elements of authority and
achieving goals which are socially useful. ...The opinion that society is
totally deprived of any influence upon government in such a country is thus
inaccurate. In reality, society does co-govern to a certain extent,
sometimes succeeding and sometimes failing in its attempt to create more
tolerable living conditions. This, however, occurs in a manner totally
different from what happens in democratic countries.
These processes: cognitive, psychological immunization, and adaptation
permit the creation of new interpersonal and societal links, which operate
within the scope of the large majority we have already called the "society
of normal people." These links extend discretely into the world of the
regime's middle class, among people who can be trusted to a certain extent.
Exchange of information, warnings, and assistance encompasses the entire
society. Whoever is able to do so offers aid to anyone who finds himself in
trouble, often in such a way that the person helped does not know who
rendered the assistance. However, if he caused his misfortune by his own
lack of circumspect caution with regard to the authorities, he meets with
reproach, but not the withholding of assistance.
It is possible to create such links because this new division of society
gives only limited consideration to factors such as the level of talent or
education or traditions attached to the former social layers. Neither do
reduced prosperity differences dissolve these links. One side of this
division contains those of the highest mental culture, simple ordinary
people, intellectuals, headwork specialists, factory workers, and peasants
joined by the common protest of their human nature against the domination of
a Para human experience and governmental methods.
These links engender
interpersonal understanding and fellow-feeling among people and social
groups formerly divided by economic differences and social traditions. The
thought processes serving these links are of more psychological character,
able to comprehend someone else's motivations. At the same time, the
ordinary folk retain respect for people who have been educated and represent
intellectual values. Certain social and moral values also appear, and may
prove to be permanent.
The genesis, however, of this great interpersonal solidarity only becomes
comprehensible once we already know the nature of the pathological
macro-social phenomenon which brought about the liberation of such
attitudes, complete with recognition of one's own humanity and that of
Another reflection suggests itself, namely how very different these
great links are from America's "competitive society...
This work is so important that I believe that every normal human being ought
to read it for their own safety and mental hygiene. I am going to present
here some important excerpts from the book soon to be made available in its
From the Author’s Foreword:
In presenting my honored readers with this volume, which I generally worked
on during the early hours before leaving to make a difficult living, I would
first like to apologize for the defects which are the result of anomalous
circumstances such as the absence of a proper laboratory. I readily admit
that these lacunae should be filled, time-consuming as that may be, because
the facts on which this book are based are urgently needed. Through no fault
of the author’s, these data have come too late.
The reader is entitled to an explanation of the long history and
circumstances under which this work was compiled. This is the third time I
have treated the same subject. I threw the first manuscript into a
central-heating furnace, having been warned just in time about an official
search, which took place minutes later. I sent the second draft to a Church
the Vatican by means of an American tourist and was absolutely
unable to obtain any kind of information about the fate of the parcel once
it left with him.
This … history … made work on the third version even more laborious. Prior
paragraphs and former phrases from one or both first drafts haunt the
writer’s mind and make proper planning of the content more difficult.
The two first drafts were written in very convoluted language for the
benefit of specialists with the necessary background, particularly in the
field of psychopathology. The irretrievable disappearance of the second
version also included the overwhelming majority of statistical data and
facts which would have been so valuable and conclusive for specialists.
Several analyses of individual cases were also lost.
The present version contains only such statistical data which had been
memorized due to frequent use, or which could be reconstructed with
satisfactory precision. […] I also nurse the hope that this work may reach a
wider audience and make available some useful scientific data which may
serve as a basis for comprehension of the contemporary world and its
history. It may also make it easier for readers to understand themselves,
their neighbors, and other nations.
Who produced the knowledge and performed the work summarized within the
pages of this book? It is a joint endeavor containing not only my efforts,
but also representing the work of many researchers…
The author worked in Poland far away from active political and cultural
centers for many years. That is where I undertook a series of detailed tests
and observations which were to be combined within the resulting
generalizations in order to produce an overall introduction for an
understanding of the macro-social phenomenon surrounding us. The name of the
person expected to effect this synthesis was a secret, as was understandable
and necessary given the time and the situation. I would very occasionally
receive anonymous summaries of the results of tests from Poland and Hungary.
A few data were published, as it raised no suspicions that a specialized
work was being compiled, and these data could still be located today.
The expected synthesis of this work did not occur. All my contacts became
inoperative as a result of the secret arrests of researchers in the early
sixties. The remaining scientific data in my possession were very
incomplete, albeit priceless in value. It took many years of lonely work to
weld these fragments into a coherent whole, filling the lacunae with my own
experience and research.
My research on essential psychopathy and its exceptional role in the
macro-social phenomenon was conducted concurrently with or shortly after
that of others. Their conclusions reached me later and confirmed my own. The
most characteristic item in my work is the general concept for a new
scientific discipline named “ponerology.”[…]
As the author of the final work, I hereby express my deep respect for all
those who initiated the research and continued to conduct it at the risk of
their careers, health and lives. I pay homage to those who paid the price
through suffering or death. May this work constitute some compensation for
New York, N.Y. August 1984
Dr. Lobaczewski escaped to the United States where he reassembled and wrote
down his research before Solidarity brought the downfall of communism in
Lobaczewski added a few words to his introduction:
Fifteen years passed, fraught with political occurrences. The world changed
essentially due to the natural laws of the phenomenon described in this
book, and due to the efforts of people of good will. Nonetheless, the world
as yet is not restored to good health; and the remainders of the great
disease are still very active and threatening a reoccurrence of the illness.
Such is the result of a great effort completed without the support of the
objective knowledge about the very nature of the phenomenon. […]
The author was
recognized as the bearer of this “dangerous” science only in
Austria, by a “friendly” physician who turned out to be a “red” agent. The
communist groups in New York were then set up to organize a “counter
action.” It was terrible to learn how the system of conscious and
unconscious pawns worked. Worst were the people who credulously trusted
their conscious “friends” and performed the insinuated activities with
The author was refused assistance and had to save his life
by working as a welder. My health collapsed, and two years were lost. It
appeared that I was not the first who came to America bringing similar
knowledge and, once there, treated in a similar way.
In spite of all these circumstances, the book was written on time, but no
one would publish it. The work was described as “very informative” but for
psychological editors, it contained too much politics and for political
editors, it contained too much psychology, or simply “the editorial deadline
has just closed.” Gradually, it became clear that the book did not pass the
The scientific value which may serve the future remains, and further
investigations may yield a new understanding of human problems with progress
toward universal peace. This was the reason I labored to retype, on my
computer, the whole already fading manuscript. It is here presented as it
was written in 1983-84 in New York, USA.
So let it be a document of good
science and dangerous labor. The author’s desire is to hand this work into
the hands of scholars in the hope they will take his burden over and
progress with the theoretical research in ponerology - and put it in praxis
for the good of people and nations.
Poland - June, 1998
Dr. Lobaczewski left the United States and returned to Poland before
September 11, 2001. But his remarks were prophetic:
Nonetheless, the world as yet is not restored to good health; and the
remainders of the great disease are still very active and threatening a
reoccurrence of the illness.
What “dangerous science" was Dr. Lobaczewski carrying with him when he
escaped from communist Poland?
He calls it “Ponerology” which the dictionary defines:
n. division of
theology dealing with evil; theological doctrine of wickedness or evil; from
the Greek: poneros -> evil'.
But Dr. Lobaczewski was not proposing a “theological” study, but rather a
scientific study of what we can plainly call Evil. The problem is, our
materialist scientific culture does not readily admit that evil actually
exists, per se. Yes, “evil” plays a part in religious discourse, but even
there it is given short shrift as an “error” or a “rebellion” that will be
corrected at some point in the future, which is discussed in another
theological division: eschatology, which is concerned with the final events
in history of the world, the ultimate fate of humanity.
There are quite a number of modern psychologists who are actually beginning
to move in the direction of what Dr. Lobaczewski said had already been done
behind the Iron Curtain many years ago. I have a stack of their books on my
desk. Some of them seem to be falling back into the religious perspective
simply because they have no other scientific ground on which to stand. I
think that is counterproductive.
As George K. Simon, Jr., writes in his book
“In Sheep’s Clothing”: (HIGHLY recommended)
…[W]e’ve been pre-programmed to believe that people only exhibit problem
behaviors when they’re “troubled” inside or anxious about something. We’ve
also been taught that people aggress only when they’re attacked in some way.
So, even when our gut tells us that somebody is attacking us and for no good
reason, we don’t readily accept the notion.
We usually start to wonder
what’s bothering the person so badly “underneath it all” that’s making them
act in such a disturbing way. We may even wonder what we may have said or
done that “threatened” them. We almost never think that they might be
fighting simply to get something, have their way, or gain the upper hand.
So, instead of seeing them as merely fighting, we view them as primarily
hurting in some way.
Not only do we often have trouble recognizing the ways people aggress us,
but we also have difficulty discerning the distinctly aggressive character
of some personalities. The legacy of Sigmund Freud’s work has a lot to do
with this. Freud’s theories (and the theories of others who built upon his
work) heavily influenced the psychology of personality for a long time.
Elements of the classical theories of personality found their way into many
disciplines other than psychology as well as into many of our social
institutions and enterprises. The basic tenets of these theories and their
hallmark construct, neurosis, have become fairly well etched in the public
Psychodynamic theories of personality tend to view everyone, at least to
some degree, as neurotic. Neurotic individuals are overly inhibited people
who suffer unreasonable fear (anxiety), guilt and shame when it comes to
securing their basic wants and needs.
The malignant impact of overgeneralizing Freud’s observations about a
small group of overly
inhibited individuals into a broad set of assumptions about the causes of
psychological ill-health in everyone cannot be overstated.[…]
Therapists whose training overly indoctrinated them in the theory of
neurosis, may “frame” problems presented them incorrectly. They may, for
example, assume that a person, who all their life has aggressively pursued
independence and demonstrated little affinity for others, must necessarily
be “compensating” for a “fear” of intimacy. In other words, they will view a
hardened fighter as a terrified runner, thus misperceiving the core reality
of the situation.[…]
We need a completely different theoretical framework if we are to truly
understand, deal with, and treat the kinds of people who fight too much as
opposed to those who cower or “run” too much.
The problem is, of course, that when you read all the books about such
people as Dr. Simon is describing, you discover that “treatment” really
means treating the victims because such aggressors almost never seek help.
Getting back to Dr. Lobaczewski: I wrote to ask for more details as to why
this important work was generally unknown. What was the meaning of his
"It appeared that I was not the first who came to America bringing
similar knowledge and, once there, treated in a similar way."
He replied by
[…] Years ago the publication of the book in the US was killed by Mr.
Zbigniew Brzezinski in a very cunning way. What was his motivation, I may
only guess. Was it his own private strategy, or did he act as an insider of
the “great system” as he surely is? How many billions of dollars and how
many human lives the lack of this science has cost the world. […]
As for who else was involved in this work: in those times, such work could
only be done in full secrecy. During the German occupation, we learned to
never ask for names though it was well known among us that this was an
international communication among some scientists.
I can tell you that one
Hungarian scientist was killed because of his work on this project, and in
Poland, professor Stephan Blachowski died mysteriously while working on
these investigations. It is a certainty that professor Kasimir Dabrowski was
active in the study, being an expert on psychopathy.
He escaped to the US
and in New York, became an object of harassment as I had been. He went to
Canada and worked at the university in Edmonton.
After reading Lobaczewski's work, it is easy to understand why
suppressed it. It exposes the Neocons and Pathocrats so completely that they
could not allow it to be propagated! It also may be that they used it as a
handbook to better "pull the wool" over the eyes of the masses.
Continuing with Lobaczewski's book:
As a youth, I read a book about a naturalist wandering through the
Amazon-basin wilderness. At some moment a small animal fell from a tree onto
the nape of his neck, clawing his skin painfully and sucking his blood. The
biologist cautiously removed it - without anger, since that was its form of
feeding - and proceeded to study it carefully. This story stubbornly stuck
in my mind during those very difficult times when a vampire fell onto our
necks, sucking the blood of an unhappy nation.
The attitude of a naturalist - who
attempts to track the nature of
macro-social phenomena in spite of all adversity - insured a certain
intellectual distance and better psychological hygiene, also slightly
increasing the feeling of safety and furnishing a premonition that this very
method may help find a certain creative solution. This required controlling
the natural, moralizing reflexes of revulsion and other painful emotions
this phenomenon provokes in any normal person when it deprives him of his
joy of life and personal safety, ruining his own future and that of his
nation. Scientific curiosity becomes a loyal ally during such times.
May the reader please imagine a very large hall in some old Gothic
university building. Many of us gathered there early in our studies in order
to listen to the lectures of outstanding philosophers. We were herded back
there the year before graduation in order to listen to the indoctrination
lectures which recently have been introduced. Someone nobody knew appeared
behind the lectern and informed us that he would now be the professor.
speech was fluent, but there was nothing scientific about it: he failed to
distinguish between scientific and everyday concepts and treated borderline
imaginings as though it were wisdom that could not be doubted. For ninety
minutes each week, he flooded us with naïve, presumptuous paralogistics and
a pathological view of human reality. We were treated with contempt and
poorly controlled hatred. Since fun poking could entail dreadful
consequences, we had to listen attentively and with the utmost gravity.
The grapevine soon discovered this person’s origins. He had come from a
Cracow suburb and attended high school, although no one knew if he
graduated. Anyway, this was the first time he had crossed university portals
- as a professor, at that! […]
After such mind-torture, it took a long time for someone to break the
silence. We studied ourselves, since we felt something strange had taken
over our minds and something valuable was leaking away irretrievably. The
world of psychological reality and moral values seemed suspended like in a
chilly fog. Our human feeling and student solidarity lost their meaning, as
did patriotism and our old established criteria. So we asked each other:
“Are you going through this too?” Each of us experienced this worry about
his own personality and future in his own way. Some of us answered the
questions with silence. The depth of these experiences turned out to be
different for each individual.
We thus wondered how to protect ourselves from the results of this
Teresa D. made the first suggestion: Let’s spend a weekend
in the mountains. It worked. Pleasant company, a bit of joking, then
exhaustion followed by deep sleep in a shelter, and our human personalities
returned, albeit with a certain remnant. Time also proved to create a kind
of psychological immunity, although not with everyone. Analyzing the
psychopathic characteristics of the “professor’s” personality proved another
excellent way of protecting one’s own psychological hygiene.
You can just imagine our worry, disappointment, and surprise when some
colleagues we knew well suddenly began to change their world-view; their
thought-patterns furthermore reminded us of the “professor’s” chatter. Their
feelings, which had just recently been friendly, became noticeably cooler,
although not yet hostile. Benevolent or critical student arguments bounced
right off of them. They gave the impression of possessing some secret
knowledge; we were only their former colleagues, still believing what those
professors of old had taught us. We had to be careful of what we said to
Our former colleagues soon joined the Party. Who were they? What social
groups did they come from? What kind of students and people were they? How
and why did they change so much in less than a year? Why did neither I nor a
majority of my fellow students succumb to this phenomenon and process? Many
such questions fluttered through our heads then.
Those times, questions, and
attitudes gave rise to the idea that this phenomenon could be objectively
understood, an idea whose greater meaning crystallized with time. Many of us
participated in the initial observations and reflections, but most crumbled
away in the face of material or academic problems. Only a few remained; so
the author of this book may be the last of the Mohicans.
It was relatively easy to determine the environments and origin of the
people who succumbed to this process, which I then called “transpersonification”.
They came from all social groups, including aristocratic and fervently
religious families, and caused a break in our student solidarity in the
order of some 6 %. The remaining majority suffered varying degrees of
personality disintegration which gave rise to individual efforts in
searching for the values necessary to find ourselves again; the results were
varied and sometimes creative.
Even then, we had no doubts as to the pathological nature of this
“transpersonification” process, which ran similar but not identical in all
cases. The duration of the results of this phenomenon also varied. Some of
these people later became zealots. Others later took advantage of various
circumstances to withdraw and reestablish their lost links to the society of
normal people. They were replaced. The only constant value of the new social
system was the magic number of 6 %.
We tried to evaluate the talent level of those colleagues who had succumbed
to this personality-transformation process, and reached the conclusion that
on average, it was slightly lower than the average of the student
population. Their lesser resistance obviously resided in other
bio-psychological features which were most probably qualitatively
I had to study subjects bordering on psychology and psychopathology in order
to answer the questions arising from our observations; scientific neglect in
these areas proved an obstacle difficult to overcome. At the same time,
someone guided by special knowledge apparently vacated the libraries of
anything we could have found on the topic.
Is it any wonder why, nowadays, any group seeking to provide this very
knowledge to others would be labeled a "cult?"
Analyzing these occurrences now in hindsight, we could say that the
“professor” was dangling bait over our heads, based on psychopaths’ specific
psychological knowledge. He knew in advance that he would fish out amenable
individuals, but the limited numbers disappointed him. The
transpersonification process generally took hold whenever an individual’s
instinctive substratum was marked by pallor or some deficits. To a lesser
extent, it also worked among people who manifested other deficiencies, also
the state provoked within them was partially impermanent, being largely the
result of psychopathological induction.
This knowledge about the existence of susceptible individuals and how to
work on them will continue being a tool for world conquest as long as it
remains the secret of such “professors.” When it becomes skillfully
popularized science, it will help nations develop immunity. But none of us
knew this at the time.
Nevertheless, we must admit that in demonstrating the properties of
pathocracy in such a way as to force us into in-depth experience, the
professor helped us understand the nature of the phenomenon in a larger
scope than many a true scientific researcher participating in this work in
one way or another. […]
The natural psychological, societal, and moral world-view is a product of
man’s developmental process within a society, under the constant influence
of his innate traits. No person can develop without being influenced by
other people and their personalities, or by the values imbued by his
civilization and his moral and religious traditions. That is why his
world-view can be neither universal nor true.
It is thus significant that the main values of this human world-view of
nature indicate basic similarities in spite of great spans of time, race,
and civilization. It is thus suggested that the “human world view” derives
from the nature of our species and the natural experience of human societies
which have achieved a certain necessary level of civilization. Refinements
based on literary values or philosophical and moral reflections do indicate
some differences, but generally speaking, they tend to bring together the
natural conceptual language of various civilizations and eras.
People with a “humanistic” education may have the impression that they have
achieved wisdom, but here we approach a problem; we must ask the following
question: Even if the natural world-view has been refined, does it mirror
reality with sufficient reliability? Or does it only mirror our species’
perception? To what extent can we depend upon it as a basis for decision
making in the individual, societal, and political spheres of life?
Experience teaches us, first of all, that this natural world-view has
permanent and characteristic tendencies toward deformation dictated by our
instinctive and emotional features. Secondly, our work exposes us to many
phenomena that cannot be understood and described by natural language alone.
Considering the most important reality deforming tendency, we notice that
those emotional features which are a natural component of the human
personality are never completely appropriate to the reality being
experienced. This results both from our instinct and from our conditioning
of upbringing. This is why the best traditions of philosophical and
religious thought have counseled subduing the emotions in order to achieve a
more accurate view of reality.
Another problem is the fact that our natural world-view is generally
characterized by a tendency to endow our opinions with moral judgments,
often so negative as to represent outrage. This appeals to tendencies which
are deeply rooted in human nature and social customs.
We often meet with sensible people endowed with a well-developed natural
world-view as regards psychological, societal, and moral aspects, frequently
refined via literary influences, religious deliberations, and philosophical
reflections. Such persons have a pronounced tendency to overrate the values
of their world-view. They do not take into account the fact that their
system can be also erroneous since it is insufficiently objective.
Let us call such an attitude the egotism of the natural world-view. To date,
it has been the least pernicious type of egotism, being merely an
overestimation of that method of comprehension containing the eternal values
of human experience.
Today, however, the world is being jeopardized by a phenomenon that cannot
be understood and described by means of such a natural conceptual language;
this kind of egotism thus becomes a dangerous factor stifling the
possibility of some counteractive measures. Developing and popularizing the
objective psychological world-view could thus significantly expand the scope
of dealing with evil via sensible action and pinpointed countermeasures.
Ever since ancient times, philosophers and religious thinkers representing
various attitudes in different cultures have been searching for the truth as
regards moral values, attempting to find criteria for what is right, what
constitutes good advice. They described the virtues of human character and
suggested these be acquired.
They created a heritage… which contains
centuries of experience and reflections. In spite of the obvious differences
among attitudes, the similarity or complementarity of the conclusions
reached by famous ancients are striking, even though they worked in widely
divergent times and places. After all, whatever is valuable is conditioned
and caused by the laws of nature acting upon the personalities of both
individual human beings and collective societies.
It is equally thought-provoking, however, to see how relatively little has
been said about the opposite side of the coin; the nature, causes, and
genesis of evil. These matters are usually cloaked behind the above
generalized conclusions with a certain amount of secrecy. Such a state of
affairs can be partially ascribed to the social conditions and historical
circumstances under which these thinkers worked. Their modus operandi may
have been dictated at least in part by personal fate, inherited traditions,
or even prudishness. After all, justice and virtue are the opposites of
force and perversity, the same applies to truthfulness vs. lies, similarly
like health is the opposite of an illness.
The character and genesis of evil thus remained hidden in discreet shadows,
leaving it to playwrights to deal with the subject in their highly
expressive language, but that did not reach the primeval source of the
phenomena. A certain cognitive space thus remains uninvestigated, a thicket
of moral questions which resists understanding and philosophical
From time immemorial, man has dreamed of a life in which his efforts to
accumulate benefits can be punctuated by rest during which time he enjoys
those benefits. He learned how to domesticate animals in order to accumulate
more benefits, and when that no longer met his needs, he learned to enslave
other human beings simply because he was more powerful and could do it.
Dreams of a happy life of “more accumulated benefits” to be enjoyed, and
more leisure time in which to enjoy them, thus gave rise to force over
others, a force which depraves the mind of its user. That is why man’s
dreams of happiness have not come true throughout history: the hedonistic
view of “happiness” contains the seeds of misery. Hedonism, the pursuit of
the accumulation of benefits for the sole purpose of self-enjoyment, feeds
the eternal cycle where good times lead to bad times.
During good times, people lose sight of the need for thinking,
introspection, knowledge of others, and an understanding of life. When
things are “good,” people ask themselves whether it is worth it to ponder
human nature and flaws in the personality (one’s own, or that of another).
In good times, entire generations can grow up with no understanding of the
creative meaning of suffering since they have never experienced it
When all the joys of life are there for the taking, mental
effort to understand science and the laws of nature - to acquire knowledge
that may not be directly related to accumulating stuff - seems like
pointless labor. Being “healthy minded,” and positive - a good sport with
never a discouraging word - is seen as a good thing, and anyone who predicts
dire consequences as the result of such insouciance is labeled a wet-blanket
or a killjoy.
Perception of the truth about reality, especially a real understanding of
human nature in all it’s ranges and permutations, ceases to be a virtue to
be acquired. Thoughtful doubters are “meddlers” who can’t leave well enough
alone. “Don’t fix it if it ain’t broke.” This attitude leads to an
impoverishment of psychological knowledge including the capacity to
differentiate the properties of human nature and personality, and the
ability to mold healthy minds creatively.
The cult of power thus supplants the mental and moral values so essential
for maintaining peace by peaceful means. A nation’s enrichment or involution
as regards its psychological world-view could be considered an indicator of
whether its future be good or bad.
During good times, the search for the meaning of life, the truth of our
reality, becomes uncomfortable because it reveals inconvenient factors.
Unconscious elimination of data which are, or appear to be, inexpedient,
begins to be habitual, a custom accepted by entire societies. The result is
that any thought processes based on such truncated information cannot bring
This then leads to substitution of convenient lies to
the self to replace uncomfortable truths thereby approaching the boundaries
of phenomena which should be viewed as psychopathological.
The facts are that “good times” for one group of people have been
historically rooted in some injustice to other groups of people. In such a
society, where all the hidden truths lurk below the surface like an iceberg,
disaster is just around the corner.
It is clear that America has experienced a long period of “good times” for
most of its existence, (no matter how many people they had to oppress or
kill to do so), but particularly so during the 50 years preceding
11, 2001. During that 50 years, several generations of children were born,
and the ones that were born at the beginning of that time, who have never
known “bad times,” are now at an age where they want to “enjoy” the benefits
they have accumulated.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like that is going to
happen; 9/11 has changed everything so profoundly that it looks like there
will be no enjoyment by anyone for a very, very long time.
How could this happen?
The answer is that a few generation’s worth of “good times” results in the
above described societal deficits regarding psychological skills and moral
criticism. Long periods of preoccupation with the self and “accumulating
benefits” for the self, diminish the ability to accurately read the
environment and other people.
But the situation is more serious than just a
generalized weakness of a society that could be “toughened up” with a little
The psychological features of each such crisis are unique to the culture and
the time, but one common denominator that exists at the beginning of all
such “bad times” is an exacerbation of society’s hysterical condition. The
emotionalism dominating in individual, collective, and political life,
combined with the subconscious selection and substitution of data in
reasoning, lead to individual and national egotism.
The mania for taking
offense at the drop of a hat provokes constant retaliation, taking advantage
of hyperirritability and hypocriticality on the part of others. It is this
feature, this hystericization of society, that enables pathological
plotters, snake charmers, and other primitive deviants to act as essential
factors in the processes of the origination of evil on a macro-social scale.
Who, exactly, are the “pathological plotters,” and what can motivate such
individuals during times that are generally understood by others as “good?”
If times are “good,” why does anyone want to plot and generate evil?
Well, certainly, the current US administration has come up with an answer:
“They hate us because of our freedoms.”
This is a prime example of
“selection and substitution of data in reasoning” which is willingly and
gladly accepted as an explanation by the public because of their deficits of
psychological skills and moral criticism.
Present-day philosophers developing meta-ethics are trying to
press forward in their understanding, and as they slip and slide along the
elastic space leading to an analysis of the language of ethics, they
contribute toward eliminating some imperfections and habits of natural
conceptual language. Penetrating this ever-mysterious nucleus, however, is
highly tempting to a scientist.[…]
If physicians behaved like ethicists and failed to study diseases because
they were only interested in studying questions of health, there would be no
such thing as modern medicine. […]
Physicians were correct in their emphasis
on studying disease above all in order to discover the causes and biological
properties of illnesses, and then to understand the pathodynamics of their
courses. A comprehension of the nature of a disease, and the course it runs,
after all, enables the proper curative means to be elaborated and
The question thus arises: could some analogous modus operandi not be used to
study the causes and genesis of other kinds of evil scourging human
individuals, families, societies? Experience has taught the author that evil
is similar to disease in nature, although possibly more complex and elusive
to our understanding. […]
Parallel to the traditional approach, problems commonly perceived to be
moral may also be treated on the basis of data provided by biology,
medicine, and psychology, as the factors of this kind are simultaneously
present in the question as a whole. Experience teaches us that a
comprehension of the essence and genesis of evil generally make use of data
from these areas. […]
Philosophical thought may have engendered all the scientific disciplines,
but the latter did not mature until they became independent, based on
detailed data and a relationship to other disciplines supplying such data.
Encouraged by the often “coincidental” discovery of these naturalistic
aspects of evil, the author initiated the methodology of medicine; a
clinical psychologist and medical co-worker by profession, he had such
tendencies anyway. As is the case with physicians and disease, he took the
risks of close contact with evil and suffered the consequences. His purpose
was to ascertain the possibilities of understanding the nature of evil, its
etiological factors and to track its pathodynamics.[…]
A new discipline thus arose:
Ponerology. The process of the genesis of evil
was called, correspondingly, “ponerogenesis.” […]
Considerable moral, intellectual, and practical advantages can be gleaned
from an understanding of the genesis of Evil thanks to the objectivity
required to study it dispassionately. The human heritage of ethics is not
destroyed by taking such an approach: it is actually strengthened because
the scientific method can be utilized to confirm the basic values of moral
Understanding the nature of macro-social pathology helps us to find a
healthy attitude and thus protects our minds from being controlled or
poisoned by the diseased contents and influence of their propaganda.
We can only conquer this huge, contagious social cancer if we comprehend its
essence and its etiological causes.
Such an understanding of the nature of the phenomena leads to the logical
conclusion that the measures for healing and reordering the world today
should be completely different from the ones heretofore used for solving
international conflicts. It is also true that, merely having the knowledge
and awareness of the phenomena of the genesis of macro-social Evil can begin
healing individual humans and help their minds regain harmony. […]
Lobaczewski discusses the fact that “bad times,” seem to have a historical
“purpose.” It seems that suffering during times of crisis lead to mental
activity aimed at solving or ending the suffering. The bitterness of loss
invariably leads to a regeneration of values and empathy.
When bad times arrive and people are overwhelmed by an excess
of evil, they must gather all their physical and mental strength to fight
for existence and protect human reason. The search for some way out of
difficulties and dangers rekindles long-buried powers or discretion. Such
people have the initial tendency to rely on force in order to counteract the
threat; they may, for instance, become “trigger happy” or dependent upon
Slowly and laboriously, however, they discover the advantages
conferred by mental effort; improved understanding of psychological
situations in particular, better differentiation of human characters and
personalities, and finally, comprehension of one’s adversaries. During such
times, virtues which former generations relegated to literary motifs regain
their real and useful substance and become prized for their value. A wise
person capable of furnishing sound advice is highly respected.
It seems that there have been many such “bad times” in the course of human
history, and it was during such times that the great systems of ethics were
developed. Unfortunately, during “good times,” nobody wants to hear about
it. They want to “enjoy” things, to have pleasure and pleasant experiences,
and so any literature that relates to such times is lost, forgotten,
suppressed, or otherwise ignored. This leads to further debasing of the
intellectual currency and opens the gap for bad times to come once again.
If a collection were to be made of all the books that describe the horrors
of wars, the cruelties of revolutions, and the bloody deeds of political
leaders and systems, most people would avoid such a library. In such a
library, ancient works would be found alongside books by contemporary
historians and reporters. The documentary evidence on German extermination
and concentration camps, complete with dry statistical data, describing the
well-organized “labor” of the destruction of human life, would be seen to
use a properly calm language, and would provide the basis for acknowledging
the nature of Evil.
The autobiography of Rudolf Hess, the commander of camps in Osweicim
(Auschwitz) and Brzezinka, (Birkenau) is a classic example of how an
intelligent psychopath thinks and feels.
Our library of death would include works on philosophy discussing the social
and moral aspects of the genesis of Evil, while using history to partially
justify the blood-drenched “solutions”.
The library would show to the alert reader a sort of evolution from
primitive attitudes, that it is alright to enslave and murder vanquished
peoples, to the present day moralizing which declares that such behavior is
barbaric and worthy of condemnation.
However, such a library would be missing one crucial tome: there would not
be a single work offering a sufficient explanation of the causes and
processes whereby such historical dramas originate, of how and why human
beings periodically degenerate into bloodthirsty madness.
The old questions would remain unanswered: what made this happen?
everyone carry the seeds of crime within, or only some of us?
No matter how
faithful to the events, nor how psychologically accurate the books that are
available may be, they cannot answer those questions nor can they fully
explain the origin of Evil.
Thus, humanity is at a great disadvantage because without a fully scientific
explanation of the origins of Evil, there is no possibility of the
development of sufficiently effective principles for counteracting Evil.
The best literary description of a disease cannot produce an understanding
of its essential etiology, and can thus furnish no principles for treatment.
In the same way, descriptions of historical tragedies are incapable of
elaborating effective measures for counteracting the genesis, existence, or
spread of Evil.
In using natural language to discuss psychological, social and moral
concepts, we find that we can only produce an approximation, which leads to
a nagging suspicion of helplessness.
Our ordinary system of concepts are not invested with the necessary factual
content - scientific observations about Evil - which would permit
comprehension of the quality of the many factors (particularly the
psychological ones) which are active before and during the birth of
inhumanly cruel times.
Nevertheless, the authors of some of the books that we would find in our
Library of Evil took great care to infuse their words with the proper
precision as though they were hoping that someone, at some time, would use
their records to explain what they, themselves, could not explain even in
the best literary language.
Most human beings are horrified by such literature. Hedonistic societies
have the strong tendency to encourage escape into ignorance or naive
doctrines. Some people even feel contempt for the suffering of others.
It is true that, in tracking the behavioral mechanisms of the genesis of
Evil, one must keep both abhorrence and fear under control, submit to a
passion for science, and develop the calm outlook needed in natural history.
This book aims to take the reader by the hand into a world beyond the
concepts and imaginings he has trusted and used since childhood. This is
necessary due to the problems our world presently faces, things we can no
longer ignore, or ignore only at the peril of all humanity. We must realize
that we cannot possibly distinguish the path to nuclear catastrophe from the
path to creative dedication unless we step beyond the subjective world of
well-known concepts, and we must also realize that this subjective world was
chosen for us by powerful forces against which our nostalgia for homey,
human ideas about warmth and safety is no match.
Moral evil and psychobiological evil are interlinked via so many causal
relationships and mutual influences that they can only be separated by means
of abstraction. However, the ability to distinguish them qualitatively
protects us from moralizing interpretations that so easily can poison the
human mind in an insidious way.
Macro-social phenomena of Evil, which constitute the most important object
of this book, appear to be subjected to the same laws of nature operating
within human beings on individual or small-group levels. The role of persons
with various psychological defects and anomalies of a clinically low level
appear to be a perennial characteristic of such phenomena.
In the macro-social phenomenon where Evil runs rampant, “Pathocracy,”
certain hereditary anomaly isolated as “essential psychopathy” is
catalytically and causatively essential for the genesis and survival of such
This last remark is the key to “grand conspiracies” that many are convinced
cannot exist. Dr. Lobaczewski discusses the kinds of individuals that form a
“Pathocracy,” or “psychopathic government,” and further, he elaborates
details about psychopaths based on his studies and the studies of those with
whom he was associated, that have never been openly discussed as far as I
can tell after reading many thousands of pages of material on the subject
generated in the West.
Dr. Lobaczewski, on the other hand, undertook his
studies “in the belly of the beast,” so to say, with live “specimens”. The
value of such a study cannot be overstated.
Pathological processes have historically had a profound
influence upon human society at large due to the fact that many individuals
with deformed characters have played outstanding roles in the formation of
social constructs. It is helpful to have some background on this.
Dr. Lobaczewski writes:
Brain tissue is very limited in its regenerative ability. If it is damaged
and the change subsequently heals, a process of rehabilitation takes place
thanks to which the neighboring healthy tissue takes over the function of
the damaged portion. This substitution is never quite perfect thus some
deficits as regards skill and proper psychological processes can be
detected, even in cases of very small damage, by using the appropriate
As regards pathological factors of ponerogenic processes, perinatal or
early-infant damages have more active results than damages which occur
In societies with highly developed medical care, we find among the lower
grades of elementary schools that 5 to 7 percent of the children have
suffered brain tissue lesions which cause certain academic or behavioral
This is actually a frightening figure. If we realize that an even higher
percentage of the previous generations have suffered brain tissue lesions
during a time when there was no highly developed perinatal and neonatal
medical care, not to mention the damage that may be suffered among those
populations today where such care is still primitive, we can understand that
much of our own culture has been shaped by people with brain damage and we
are faced with dealing with a world in which brain damaged individuals have
an important influence on the social constructs!
Keep in mind that if your
grandfather suffered perinatal or neonatal brain damage, it affected how he
raised one of your parents, which affects how that parent raised you!
Epilepsy constitutes the oldest known results of such lesions; it is
observed in relatively small numbers of persons suffering such damage.
Researchers in these matters are more or less unanimous in believing that
Julius Caesar and then later Napoleon Bonaparte had epileptic seizures. The
extent to which these ailments had a negative effect upon their characters
and historical decision making, or played a ponerogenic role, can be the
subject of a separate study. In most cases, however, epilepsy is an evident
ailment, which limits its role as a ponerogenic factor.
In a much larger part of the bearers of brain tissue damage, the negative
deformation of their characters grows in the course of time. It takes on
various mental pictures depending on the properties and localizations of the
damage, their time of origin, and also the life conditions of the individual
after their occurrence. We will call character disorders resulting from such
Some characteropathies play an outstanding role as pathological agents in
the processes of the genesis of evil on a large social scale. […]
A relatively well-documented example of such an influence of a
characteropathic personality on a macro-social scale is the last German
Wilhelm II. He was subjected to brain trauma at birth. During and
after his entire reign, his physical and psychological handicap was hidden
from public knowledge. The motor abilities of the upper left portion of his
body were handicapped.
As a boy, he had difficulty learning grammar,
geometry, and drawing, which constitutes the typical triad of academic
difficulties caused by minor brain lesions. He developed a personality with
infantilistic features and insufficient control over his emotions, and also
a somewhat paranoid way of thinking which easily sidestepped the heart of
some important issues in the process of dodging problems.
Militaristic poses and a general’s uniform overcompensated for his feelings
of inferiority and effectively cloaked his shortcomings. Politically, his
insufficient control of emotions and factors of personal rancor came into
view. The old Iron Chancellor had to go, that cunning and ruthless
politician who had been loyal to the monarchy and built up Prussian power.
After all, he was too knowledgeable about the prince’s defects and had
worked against his coronation. A similar fate met other overly critical
people, who were replaced by persons with lesser brains, more subservience,
and sometimes, discreet psychological deviations.
Negative selection took
Notice this last term: “negative selection took place.”
That is to say, a
defective head of state selected his staff, his government, based on his own
pathologically damaged worldview. I’m sure the reader can perceive how
dangerous such a situation can be to the people governed by such a
“negatively selected” cabal.
The important thing to consider here is what
effect this had on the social constructs under the rule of such individuals.
The experience of people with such anomalies grows out
of the normal human world to which they belong by nature. Thus, their
different way of thinking, their emotional violence, and their egotism find
relatively easy entry into other people’s minds and are perceived within the
categories of the natural world-view.
Such behavior on the part of persons
with such character disorders traumatizes the minds and feelings of normal
people, gradually diminishing their ability to use their common sense. In
spite of their resistance, people become used to the rigid habits of
pathological thinking and experiencing. In young people, as a result, the
personality suffers abnormal development leading to its malformation. They
thus represent pathological ponerogenic factors which, by their covert
activity, easily engenders new phases in the eternal genesis of evil,
opening the door to a later activation of other factors which thereupon take
over the main role. […]
[In the case of the effect of Wilhelm II], many Germans were progressively
deprived of their ability to use their common sense because of the
impingement of psychological material of the characteropathic type, as the
common people are prone to identify with the emperor…
A new generation grew up with deformities as regards feeling and
understanding moral, psychological, social and political realities. It is
extremely typical that in many German families containing a member who was
psychologically not quite normal, it became a matter of honor (even excusing
nefarious conduct) to hide this fact from public opinion - and even the
awareness of close friends and relatives. Large portions of society ingested
psychopathological material, together with that unrealistic way of thinking
wherein slogans take on the power of arguments and real data are subjected
to subconscious selection.
This occurred during a time when a wave of hysteria was growing throughout
Europe, including a tendency for emotions to dominate and for human behavior
to contain an element of histrionics. […] This progressively took over three
empires and other countries on the mainland.
To what extent did Wilhelm II contribute to this, along with two other
emperors whose minds also did not take in the actual facts of history and
government? To what extent were they themselves influenced by an
intensification of hysteria during their reigns?
That would make an
interesting topic of discussion among historians and ponerologists.
International tensions increased; Archduke Ferdinand was assassinated in
Sarajevo. However, neither the Kaiser nor any other governmental authority
in his country possessed reason. (Due to the aforementioned negative
selection process.) What came into play was Wilhelm’s emotional attitude and
the stereotypes of thought and action inherited from the past. War broke
out. General war plans prepared earlier, which had lost their topicality
under the new conditions, unfolded more like military maneuvers. Even those
historians familiar with the genesis and character of the Prussian state,
including its ideological tradition of bloody expansionism, intuit that
these situations contained some activity of an uncomprehended fatality which
eludes an analysis in terms of historical causality.
Many thoughtful persons keep asking the same anxious question: how could the
German nation have chosen for a Fuehrer a clownish psychopath who made no
bones about his pathological vision of superman rule?
Under his leadership,
Germany then unleashed a second war, criminal and politically absurd. During
the second half of this war, highly trained army officers honorably
performed the inhuman orders, senseless from the political and military
point of view, issued by a man whose psychological state corresponded to the
routine criteria for being forcibly committed to psychiatric
Any attempt to explain the things that occurred during the first half of our
century by means of categories generally accepted in historical thought
leaves behind a nagging feeling of inadequacy. Only a ponerological approach
can compensate for this deficit in our comprehension, as it does justice to
the role of various pathological factors in the genesis of evil at every
Fed for generations on pathologically altered psychological material, the
German nation fell into a state comparable to what we see in certain
individuals raised by persons who are both characteropathic and hysterical.
Psychologists know from experience how often such people then let themselves
commit acts which seriously hurt others. […]
The Germans inflicted and suffered enormous pain during the first World War;
they thus felt no substantial guilt and even thought they had been wronged,
as they were behaving in accordance with their customary habit without being
aware of its pathological causes. The need for this state to be clothed in
heroic garb after a war in order to avoid bitter disintegration became all
too common. A mysterious craving arose, as if the social organism had …
become addicted to some drug. That was the hunger of pathologically modified
psychological material, a phenomenon known to psychotherapeutic experience.
This hunger could only be satisfied by another personality and system of
government, both similarly pathological.
A characteropathic personality opened the door for leadership by a
What is interesting at this point in Lobaczewski’s discourse is his
indication that this pattern repeats itself again and again in history: a
pathologically brain-damaged individual creates circumstances that condition
the public in a certain way, and this, then, opens the door for the
psychopath to come to power.
As I read this, I thought back to the last 45
or 50 years of history in America and realized that the “cold war,” the
nuclear threat, the assassination of JFK, the antics of Nixon, Johnson,
Reagan, Clinton, the manipulation of Americans via the media, were just such
characteropathic conditionings that opened the door for the Neocons and
their nominal puppet, George W. Bush, who can certainly be described as,
clownish psychopath who makes no bones about his pathological vision of
We can even see in the cabal that is assembled around
George W. Bush, the same “negative selection” of advisors and cabinet
officials as Lobaczewski described were assembled around Kaiser Wilhelm.
So, we begin to understand just how important this “science of evil adjusted
for political purposes” may be and how much understanding we, as a society,
In order to understand exactly how an entire society, even an entire
nation, can become a Pathocracy, we need to understand a little bit about
the types of individuals that make up the core of such a “conspiracy.”
Lobaczewski discusses the most frequent
characteropathies and their relation
to brain lesions giving examples.
Paranoidal character disorders
It is characteristic of paranoid behavior
for people to be capable of relatively correct reasoning and discussion as
long as the conversation involves minor differences of opinions. This stops
abruptly when the partner's arguments begin to undermine their overvalued
ideas, crush their long-held stereotypes of reasoning, or force them to
accept a conclusion they had subconsciously rejected before. Such a stimulus
unleashes upon the partner a torrent of pseudo-logical, largely para-moralistic,
often insulting utterances which always contain some degree of suggestion.
Utterances like these inspire aversion among cultivated and logical people,
but they enslave less critical minds, e.g. people with other kinds of
psychological deficiencies, who were earlier the objects of the egotistical
influence of individuals with character disorders, and in particular a large
part of the young. […]
We know today that the psychological mechanism of
paranoid phenomena is
twofold: one is caused by damage to the brain tissue, the other is
functional or behavioral.[…]
In persons free of brain-tissue lesions, such phenomena most frequently
occur as a result of being reared by people with paranoidal characteropathia,
along with the psychological terror of their childhood. Such psychological
material is then assimilated creating the rigid stereotypes of abnormal
experiencing. This makes it difficult for thought and world-view to develop
normally, and the terror-blocked contents become transformed into permanent
functional congestive centers.[…]
The frontal areas of the cerebral cortex (10A and B
acc. to the
Brodmann division) are virtually present in no creature except
man; they are composed of the phylogenetically youngest nervous tissue.
Their cyto-architecture is similar to the much older visual projection areas
on the opposite pole of the brain. This suggests some functional similarity.
[…] As described by researchers (Luria et al.), the functions of these areas
- thought-process acceleration and coordination - seem to result from this
Damage to this area … has been significantly reduced due to improved medical
care for pregnant women and newborns. The spectacular ponerogenic role which
results from character disorders caused by this can thus be considered
somewhat characteristic of past generations and primitive cultures.
Brain cortex damage in these areas selectively impairs the above mentioned
function without impairing memory, associative capacity, or in particular
such instinct-based feelings and functions as for instance the ability to
intuit a psychological situation. The general intelligence of an individual
is thus not greatly reduced. […]
The pathological character of such people, generally containing a component
of hysteria, develops through the years. The non-damaged psychological
functions become overdeveloped to compensate, which means that instinctive
and affective reactions predominate. Relatively vital people become
belligerent, risk-happy, and brutal in both word and deed.
Persons with an
innate talent for intuiting psychological situations tend to take advantage
of this gift in an egotistical and ruthless fashion. In the thought process
of such people, a short cut way develops which bypasses the handicapped
function, thus leading from associations directly to words, deeds, and
decisions which are not subject to any dissuasion.
interpret their talent for intuiting situations and making split-second
oversimplified decisions as a sign of their superiority compared to normal
people, who need to think for a long time, experiencing self-doubt and
conflicting motivations. The fate of such creatures does not deserve to be
Such "Stalinistic characters" traumatize and actively spellbind others, and
their influence finds it exceptionally easy to bypass the controls of common
sense. A large proportion of people tend to credit such individuals with
special powers, thereby succumbing to their egotistic beliefs. If a parent
manifests such a defect, no matter how minimal, all the children in the
family evidence anomalies in personality development.
The author studied an entire generation of older, educated, people wherein
the source of such influence was the eldest sister who suffered perinatal
damage of frontal centers. From early childhood, her four younger brothers
assimilated pathologically altered psychological material, including their
sister's growing component of hysteria.
They retained well into their
sixties the deformities of personality and world-view, as well as hysterical
features thus caused, whose intensity diminished in proportion to the
greater difference in age. Subconscious selection of information made it
impossible for them to apprehend any critical comments regarding their
sister's character, also these were capable of offending family honor. The
brothers accepted as real their sister's pathological delusions and
complaints about her "bad" husband (who was actually a decent person) and
her son, in whom she found a scapegoat to avenge her failures.
participated in a world of vengeful emotions, considering their sister a
completely normal person whom they were prepared to defend - by the most
unsavory methods, if need be - against any suggestions of her abnormality.
They thought normal women were insipid and naive, good for nothing but
sexual conquest. Not one among the brothers ever created a healthy family or
developed even average wisdom of life.
The character development of these people also included many other factors
dependent upon the time and place in which they were reared: the turn of the
century, with a patriotic Polish father and German mother who obeyed
contemporary custom by formally accepting her husband's nationality, but who
still remained an advocate of the militarism and accepting of the
intensified hysteria which covered Europe at the time.
That was the Europe
of the three Emperors: The concept of "honor" sanctified triumph. Staring at
someone too long was sufficient pretext for a duel. These brothers were thus
raised to be valiant duelists full of saber-scars; however, the slashes they
inflicted upon their opponents were more frequent and much worse.[…]
[All other considerations of time and place aside] if the sister had not
suffered brain damage and the pathological factors had not existed the evil
[these men] sowed too liberally during their lives would either not have
existed at all, or else been reduced to a scope conditioned by more remote
pathological factors. […]
Comparative considerations also led the author to conclude that
Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili, also known as Stalin, should be included in the
list of this particular ponerogenic characteropathy, which developed against
the backdrop of perinatal damage to his brain's prefrontal fields.
Literature and news about him abounds in indications: brutal, charismatic
snake-charming; issuing of irrevocable decisions; inhuman ruthlessness,
pathologic vengefulness directed at anyone who got in his way; and
egotistical belief in his own genius on the part of a person whose mind was,
in fact, average. This state explains as well his psychological dependence
on a psychopath like Beria. Some photographs reveal the typical deformation
of his forehead which appears in people who suffered very early damage to
the areas mentioned above. […]
Drug induced characteropathies
During the last few decades, medicine has
begun using a series of drugs with serious side effects: they attack the
nervous system, leaving permanent damage behind. These generally discreet
handicaps sometimes give rise to personality changes which are often very
harmful socially. Streptomycin proved a very dangerous drug; as a result,
some countries have limited its use, whereas others have taken it off the
list of drugs whose use is permitted.
The cytostatic [cancer treatment] drugs used in treating neoplastic diseases
often attack the phylogenetically oldest brain tissue, the primary carrier
of our instinctive substratum and basic feelings. Persons treated with such
drugs progressively tend to lose their emotional color and their ability to
intuit a psychological situation. They retain their intellectual functions
but become praise-craving egocentrics, easily ruled by people who know how
to take advantage of this.
They become indifferent to other people's
feelings and the harm they are inflicting upon them; any criticism of their
own person or behavior is repaid with a vengeance. Such a change of
character in a person who until recently enjoyed respect on the part of his
environment or community, which perseveres in human minds, becomes a
pathological phenomenon causing often tragic results.[…]
Similar to the above in psychological picture, such results may be caused by
endogenous toxins or viruses. When sometimes the mumps proceeds with a brain
reaction, it leaves in its wake a discrete pallor or flatness of feelings
and a slight decrease in mental efficiency. Similar phenomena are witnessed
after a difficult bout with diphtheria. Finally polio also attacks the brain
People with leg paresis rarely manifest these effects, but those with
paresis of the neck and/or shoulders must count themselves lucky if they do
not. In addition to affective pallor, persons manifesting these effects
usually evidence an inability to comprehend the crux of a matter and
Character anomalies developing as a result of brain-tissue damage behave
like insidious ponerogenic factors. As a result of the above-described
features, [ponerogenic influences] easily anchor in human minds,
traumatizing our psyches, impoverishing and deforming our thoughts and
feelings, and limiting individuals' and societies' ability to use common
sense and recognize a psychological or moral situation.
This opens the door to other pathological characters who most frequently
carry some inherited psychological deviations. They then push the
characteropathic individuals into the shadows and proceed with their
ponerogenic work. That is why various types of characteropathies participate
in the initial periods of the genesis of evil, both on the macro-social
scale and on the individual scale of human families.
An improved social system of the future should thus protect individuals and
societies by preventing persons with the above deviations, or the
characteristics to be discussed below, from any social functions wherein the
fate of other people would depend upon their behavior. This of course
applies primarily to top governmental positions.
Such questions should be
decided by an appropriate institution composed of people with a reputation
for wisdom and with medical and psychological training. The features of
brain-tissue lesions and their character disorder results are much easier to
detect than some inherited anomalies.
Thus, stifling ponerogenic process by
removing these factors from the process of the synthesis of evil is
effective during the early phases of such genesis, and much easier in
Science already protects societies from the results of some physiological
anomalies which are accompanied by certain psychological weaknesses. The
tragic role played by hereditary hemophilia among European royalty is well
known. Responsible people nowadays are anxious not to allow a carrier of
such a gene to become queen. Any society lavishing so much care upon
individuals with blood-coagulation insufficiency would protest if a man with
this anomaly were appointed to a high office.
This behavior model should be
extended to many other inherited anomalies.
Daltonists, men with an impaired ability to distinguish red and green colors
from grey are now barred from professions in which this impairment might
cause a catastrophe. We also know that this anomaly is accompanied by a
decrease in esthetic experience, emotions, and the feeling of being linked
to a society of people who can see colors normally. Industrial psychologists
are thus cautious whether such a person should be entrusted with work
involving a dependence upon man’s autonomic sense of responsibility, as
workers’ safety is contingent upon this sense.
It was discovered long ago that this anomaly is inherited by means of a gene
located on the X chromosome and tracking the transmission through many
generations does not meet with difficulty. Genetics have similarly studied
inheritance of many other features of human organisms, but they paid scant
attention to the anomalies interesting us. Many features of human character
have a hereditary basis in genes located in the same X chromosome; although
it is not a rule. Something similar could apply to the majority of
psychological anomalies discussed below. […]
Severe problems are caused by the
XYY karyotype which produces men who are
tall, strong, and emotionally violent… but their number and role in
ponerogenic processes is very small.
Much more numerous are those psychological deviations which play a
correspondingly greater role as pathological factors involving ponerological
processes; they are most probably transmitted through normal hereditary
However, this realm of genetics is faced with manifold biological and
Lobaczewski next describes a number of inherited psychological pathologies
such as Schizoidal psychopathy - now referred to as “schizotypal personality
disorder” - about which he says:
Carriers of this anomaly are hypersensitive and distrustful, but they pay
little attention to the feelings of others, tend to assume extreme
positions, and are eager to retaliate for minor offenses. Sometimes they are
eccentric and odd. Their poor sense of psychological situation and reality
leads them to superimpose erroneous, pejorative interpretations upon other
people’s intentions. They easily become involved in activities which are
ostensibly moral, but which actually inflict damage upon themselves and
others. Their impoverished psychological world-view makes them typically
When they become wrapped up in situations of serious
stress, their failings cause them to collapse easily. …The schizoids
frequently fall into reactive psychotic states so similar in appearance to
schizophrenia that they lead to misdiagnoses.
If the emotional pressure on them is minimized, they are able to develop
proper speculative reasoning, but they tend to consider themselves
intellectually superior to “ordinary” people.
The quantitative frequency of this anomaly varies among races. It is low
among Blacks, and highest among Jews. Observation suggests that it is
A schizoid’s ponerological activity should be evaluated in two aspects. On
the small scale, such people cause their families trouble, easily turn into
tools of intrigue in the hands of clever individuals, and generally do a
poor job of raising the younger generation. […]
However, their ponerogenic role can take on macro-social proportions if
their attitude toward human reality and their tendency to invent great
doctrines are put to paper and duplicated in large editions.
In spite of their typical deficits, or even an openly Schizoidal
declaration, their readers do not realize what the authors’ characters are
like, and tend to interpret such works in a way that corresponds to their
own nature. The minds of normal people tend toward corrective interpretation
thanks to the participation of their own richer psychological world-view.
However, many readers reject such works with moral disgust but without being
aware of the specific cause.
An analysis of the role played by Karl Marx’s
works easily reveals all the above mentioned types of apperception and the
social reactions which engendered separations among people.
We now come to the most important pathology: psychopathy.
not, as many people think, so easy to recognize. The problem is that the
term “psychopath” has come to be usually applied by the public (due to the
influence of the media) to overtly and obviously mad-dog murderers. There is
also some confusion regarding psychopathy vis a vis “antisocial personality
Nice words, aren’t they? They sound so clean and clinical; just a person who
is “anti-social.” It almost suggests a hermit who never bothers anybody. But
nothing could be further from the truth.
Robert Hare, the current American
guru on psychopathy writes about this problem of terminology as follows:
Traditionally, affective and interpersonal traits such as egocentricity,
deceit, shallow affect, manipulativeness, selfishness, and lack of empathy,
guilt or remorse, have played a central role in the conceptualization and
diagnosis of psychopathy (Cleckley; Hare 1993; in press; Widiger and
In 1980 this tradition was broken with the publication of DSM-III.
Psychopathy - renamed antisocial personality disorder - was now defined by
persistent violations of social norms, including lying, stealing, truancy,
inconsistent work behavior and traffic arrests.
Among the reasons given for this dramatic shift away from the use of
clinical inferences were that personality traits are difficult to measure
reliably, and that it is easier to agree on the behaviors that typify a
disorder than on the reasons why they occur. The result was a diagnostic
category with good reliability but dubious validity, a category that lacked
congruence with other, well-established conceptions of psychopathy. […]
The problems with
DSM-III and its 1987 revision (DSM-III-R) were widely
discussed in the clinical and research literature (Widiger and Corbitt).
Much of the debate concerned the absence of personality traits in the
ASPD (Antisocial personality
disorder), an omission that allowed antisocial individuals with
completely different personalities, attitudes and motivations to share the
same diagnosis. At the same time, there was mounting evidence that the
criteria for ASPD defined a disorder that was more artifactual than "real" (Livesley
and Schroeder). […]
Most psychopaths (with the exception of those who somehow manage to plow
their way through life without coming into formal or prolonged contact with
the criminal justice system) meet the criteria for ASPD, but most
individuals with ASPD are not psychopaths. […]
The differences between
psychopathy and ASPD are further highlighted by
recent laboratory research involving the processing and use of linguistic
and emotional information. Psychopaths differ dramatically from
non-psychopaths in their performance of a variety of cognitive and affective
tasks. Compared with normal individuals, for example, psychopaths are less
able to process or use the deep semantic meanings of language and to
appreciate the emotional significance of events or experiences (Larbig and
others; Patrick; Williamson and others). […]
Things become even more problematic when we consider that the DSM-IV text
description of ASPD (which it says is also known as psychopathy) contains
many references to traditional features of psychopathy. […]
The failure to differentiate between
psychopathy and ASPD can have serious
consequences for clinicians and for society. For example, most jurisdictions
consider psychopathy to be an aggravating rather than a mitigating factor in
determining criminal responsibility. In some states an offender convicted of
first-degree murder and diagnosed as a psychopath is likely to receive the
death penalty on the grounds that psychopaths are cold-blooded, remorseless,
untreatable and almost certain to re-offend.
But many of the killers on
death row were, and continue to be, mistakenly referred to as psychopaths on
the basis of DSM-III, DSM-III-R or DSM-IV criteria for ASPD (Meloy). We
don’t know how many of these inhabitants of death row actually exhibit the
personality structure of the psychopath, or how many merely meet the
criteria for ASPD, a disorder that applies to the majority of criminals and
that has only tenuous implications for treatability and the likelihood of
If a diagnosis of psychopathy has consequences for the
death penalty- or for any other severe disposition, such as an indeterminate
sentence or a civil commitment- clinicians making the diagnosis should make
certain they do not confuse ASPD with psychopathy. […]
Diagnostic confusion about the two disorders has the potential for harming
psychiatric patients and society as well.
In my book,
Without Conscience, I argued that we live in a "camouflage
society," a society in which some psychopathic traits- egocentricity, lack
of concern for others, superficiality, style over substance, being "cool," manipulativeness, and so forth- increasingly are tolerated and even valued.
With respect to the topic of this article, it is easy to see how both
psychopaths and those with ASPD could blend in readily with groups holding
antisocial or criminal values. It is more difficult to envisage how those
with ASPD could hide out among more prosocial segments of society. Yet
psychopaths have little difficulty infiltrating the domains of business,
politics, law enforcement, government, academia and other social structures
It is the egocentric, cold-blooded and remorseless psychopaths who
blend into all aspects of society and have such devastating impacts on
people around them who send chills down the spines of law enforcement
Hare, Robert D.
Psychopathy and Antisocial Personality Disorder:
A Case of Diagnostic Confusion
Psychiatric Times, February 1996: Vol. XIII
Regarding essential psychopathy, Lobaczewski tells us:
Let us characterize another heredity-transmitted anomaly whose role in
ponerogenic processes on any social scale appears exceptionally great. We
should underscore that the need to isolate this phenomenon and examine it in
detail became most evident to those researchers who were interested in the
macro social scale of genesis of evil because they have witnessed it. I
acknowledge my debt to Kasimir Dabrowski in doing this and calling this
anomaly an “essential psychopathy.”
Biologically speaking, the phenomenon is similar to color-blindness and
occurs with similar frequency, (slightly above .5 percent) except that,
unlike color-blindness, it affects both sexes.
Here, Lobaczewski suggests a particular low frequency of occurrence of
essential psychopathy. However, in his book, he also mentions a 1.15 percent
of his total population of 5000 subjects that did not demonstrate any
overtly identifiable pathology except that they performed actions that bring
harm to other people for no explainable reason.
If we consider what Dr. Hare
has written above, that psychopaths have little difficulty infiltrating the
domains of business, politics, law enforcement, government, academia and
other social structures and can blend into all aspects of society, we must
ask the question: is it possible that Lobaczewski’s 1.15 percent of
unidentified “evildoers” were this type of psychopath?
As he points out, it
could very well have been the diagnostic criteria that was lacking, and had
he utilized Hare’s psychopathy check-list, this group might very well have
been identified as psychopaths.
The point I wish to make is the number of
psychopathic individuals likely to be found in any given cross-section
sampling of society may be much higher than we suspect. Lobaczewski suggests
that the occurrence of psychopathy is about the same as color-blindness: .5
percent. But if you add that figure to the 1.15 percent that he couldn’t
identify, the actual number in his population may be closer to 1.65 percent.
Let's recall that Harvard psychologist Martha Stout claims that 4 percent of
“ordinary people” (one in 25) often have an,
“undetected mental disorder, the
chief symptom of which is that the person possesses no conscience. He or she
has no ability whatsoever to feel shame, guilt, or remorse… They can do
literally anything at all and feel absolutely no guilt.”
That just happens to fit right in with Hare’s description of
though we are obviously dealing with an entire spectrum of manifestation, as
Dr. Stout emphasizes, not to mention the difference between pathologies that
are mechanical, i.e. brain damage, and pathologies that are inherited.
add Stout’s figure of 4 percent of undetected, “ordinary” people, to Lobaczewski’s .5 percent, and include the 1.5 percent of people who had done
harm to others with no evident pathology, we then have a figure of 5.65
percent - almost 6 percent of the population.
My math may be off, but I am
reminded of what Lobaczewski wrote about the influence of “indoctrination”
on his peers.
It was relatively easy to determine the environments and origin of the
people who succumbed to this process, which I then called “transpersonification”.
They came from all social groups, including aristocratic and fervently
religious families, and caused a break in our student solidarity in the
order of some 6 %. […]
Even then, we had no doubts as to the pathological nature of this
“transpersonification” process, which ran similar but not identical in all
cases. The duration of the results of this phenomenon also varied. Some of
these people later became zealots. Others later took advantage of various
circumstances to withdraw and reestablish their lost links to the society of
normal people. They were replaced. The only constant value of the new social
system was the magic number of 6 %.
This is an interesting thing, this number. I have no explanation for it
because we are certainly talking about many factors and not a single
there is more to the problem than anyone has yet
Continuing with Lobaczewski’s ponerological view of psychopathy:
Its intensity also varies in scope from a level barely perceptive to an
experienced observer to obvious pathological deficiency. Like
color-blindness, this anomaly also appears to represent a deficit in
stimulus transformation, albeit occurring not on the sensory but on
Psychiatrists of the old school used to call such
individuals “Daltonists of human feelings and socio-moral values.”
The psychological picture shows clear deficits among men only; among women
it is generally toned down, as by the effect of the second normal allele.
This suggests that the anomaly is also inherited via the X chromosome but
through a semi-dominating gene. However, the author was unable to confirm
this by excluding inheritance from father to son.
Here, it is interesting to speculate that
inherited his psychopathy from his mother, Barbara.
Analysis of the different experiential manner demonstrated by these
individuals caused us to conclude that their instinctive substratum is also
defective, containing certain gaps and lacking the natural syntonic
responses commonly evidenced by members of the species Homo sapiens. […]
Our natural world of concepts then strikes such persons as a nearly
incomprehensible convention with no justification in their own psychological
experience. They think that normal human customs and principles of decency
are a foreign convention invented and imposed by someone else (“probably by
priests”) silly, onerous, sometimes even ridiculous. At the same time,
however, they easily perceive the deficiencies and weaknesses of our natural
language of psychological and moral concepts in a manner somewhat
reminiscent of the attitude of a contemporary psychologist - except in
The average intelligence of individuals with the above mentioned deviation,
especially if measured via commonly used tests, is somewhat lower than that
of normal people, albeit similarly variegated. However, this group does not
contain instances of the highest intelligence, nor do we find technical or
craftsmanship talents among them.
The most gifted members of this kind may
thus achieve accomplishments in those sciences which do not require
humanistic worldview or practical skills. Whenever we attempt to construct
special tests to measure “life wisdom” or “socio-moral imagination”, even if
the difficulties of psychometric evaluation are taken into account,
individuals of this type indicate a deficit disproportionate to their
In spite of their deficiencies as regards normal psychological and moral
knowledge, they develop and then have at their disposal a knowledge of their
own, something lacked by people with a natural worldview.
They learn to recognize each other in a crowd as early as childhood, and
they develop an awareness of the existence of other individuals similar to
They also become conscious of being different from the world of those other
people surrounding them. They view us from a certain distance, take a
Natural human reactions - which often fail to elicit interest because they
are considered self-evident - strike psychopaths as strange and therefore
interesting, even comical. They therefore observe us, deriving conclusions,
forming their different world of concepts.
They become experts in our weaknesses and sometimes effect heartless
experiments upon us. … Neither a normal person nor our natural worldview can
perceive or properly evaluate the existence of this world of different
A researcher into such phenomena can glean a similar deviant knowledge
through long-term studies of the personalities of such people, using it with
some difficulty, like a foreign language. … [The psychopath] will never be
able to incorporate the worldview of a normal person, although they often
try to do so all their lives. The product of their efforts is only a role
and a mask behind which they hide their deviant reality.
Another myth and role - albeit containing a grain of truth - would be the
psychopath’s brilliant mind or psychological genius; some of them actually
believe in this and attempt to insinuate this belief to others.
of the mask of psychological normality worn by such individuals (and by
similar deviants to a lesser extent), we should mention the book
The Mask of
Sanity; the author, Hervey Cleckley, made this very phenomenon the crux of
Let us remember that his typical behavior defeats what appear to be his own
aims. Is it not he himself who is most deeply deceived by his apparent
normality? Although he deliberately cheats others and is quite conscious of
his lies, he appears unable to distinguish adequately between his own
pseudo-intentions, pseudo-remorse, pseudo-love, and the genuine responses of a
His monumental lack of insight indicates how little he
appreciates the nature of his disorder. When others fail to accept
immediately his "word of honor as a gentleman," his amazement, I believe, is
often genuine. The term genuine is used here not to qualify the psychopath's
intentions but to qualify his amazement. His subjective experience is so
bleached of deep emotion that he is invincibly ignorant of what life means
His awareness of hypocrisy's opposite is so insubstantially theoretical that
it becomes questionable if what we chiefly mean by hypocrisy should be
attributed to him. Having no major values himself, can he be said to realize
adequately the nature and quality of the outrages his conduct inflicts upon
A young child who has no impressive memory of severe pain may have
been told by his mother it is wrong to cut off the dog's tail. Knowing it is
wrong he may proceed with the operation. We need not totally absolve him of
responsibility if we say he realized less what he did than an adult who, in
full appreciation of physical agony, so uses a knife. Can a person
experience the deeper levels of sorrow without considerable knowledge of
happiness? Can he achieve evil intention in the full sense without real
awareness of evil's opposite?
I have no final answer to these questions.
All researchers into psychopathy underline three qualities primarily with
regard to this most typical variety: The absence of a sense of guilt for
antisocial actions, the inability to love truly, and the tendency to be
garrulous in a way which easily deviates from reality.
A neurotic patient is generally taciturn and has trouble explaining what
hurts him most. […] These patients are capable of decent and enduring love,
although they have difficulty expressing it or achieving their dreams. A
psychopath’s behavior constitutes the antipode of such phenomena and
Our first contact [with the psychopath] is characterized by a talkative
stream which flows with ease and avoids truly important matters with equal
ease if they are uncomfortable for the talker. His train of thought also
avoids those matters of human feelings and values whose representation is
absent in the psychopathic world view. […] From the logical point of view,
the flow of thought is ostensibly correct…
[Psychopaths] are virtually unfamiliar with the enduring emotions of love
for another person… it constitutes a fairy-tale from that “other” human
world. [For the psychopath] love is an ephemeral phenomenon aimed at sexual
adventure. However [the psychopath] is able to play the lover’s role well
enough for their partners to accept it in good faith. [Moral teachings] also
strike them as a similar fairy-tale good only for children and those
The world of normal people whom they hurt is incomprehensible and hostile to
[Life to the psychopath] is the pursuit of its immediate
attractions, pleasure and power. They meet with failure along this road,
along with force and condemnation from the society of those other
It should be emphasized that psychopaths are quite often interesting - even
They exude a captivating energy that keeps their listeners on the
edge of their seats. Even if some part of the normal person is shocked or
repelled by what the psychopath says, they are like the mouse hypnotized by
the torturing cat. Even if they have the chance to run away, they don’t.
Many Psychopaths “make their living” by using charm, deceit, and
manipulation to gain the confidence of their victims.
Many of them can be
found in white collar professions where they are aided in their evil by the
fact that most people expect certain classes of people to be trustworthy
because of their social or professional credentials. Lawyers, doctors,
teachers, politicians, psychiatrists and psychologists, generally do not
have to earn our trust because they have it by virtue of their positions.
But the fact is: psychopaths are found in such lofty spheres also!
At the same time, psychopaths are good impostors. They have absolutely no
forging and brazenly using impressive credentials to adopt
professional roles that bring prestige and power. They pick professions in
requisite skills are easy to fake, the jargon is easy to learn,
and the credentials are unlikely to be thoroughly checked. Psychopaths find
it extremely easy to pose as financial consultants, ministers, psychological
counselors and psychologists.
And that’s a scary thought.
Psychopaths make their way by conning people into doing things for them;
obtaining money for them, prestige, power, or even standing up for them when
others try to expose them. But that is their claim to fame. That’s what they
do. And they do it very well. What’s more, the job is very easy because most
people are gullible with an unshakable belief in the inherent goodness of
man which, I should add, has been programmed into normal people by
Returning to the work of Lobaczewski, he next gives us the most important
clues as to how and why a truly global conspiracy can and does exist on our
planet though it certainly isn’t a conspiracy in the normally accepted sense
of the word.
You could even say that such conspiracies arise simply as a
natural result of the un-bridgeable divide between normal people and
deviants. In a certain sense, understanding the view the psychopath has of
“normal people,” that they are “other” and even “foreign,” helps us to
realize how such conspiracies can be so “secret” - though that is not the
precise word we would like to use.
Even if different ponerological groups
are opposed to each other, they will still exclude "normal people" from
their confidences. It is only the "normal" people who have been induced into
their webs that provide the "leaks."
Lobaczewski describes it in the
In any society in this world, psychopathic individuals and some of the other
deviants create a ponerogenically active network of common collusions,
partially estranged from the community of normal people. Some inspirational
role of the essential psychopathy in this network also appears to be a
They are aware of being different as they obtain their life experience and
become familiar with different ways of fighting for their goals. Their world
is forever divided into “us and them” - their world with its own laws and
customs and that other foreign world full of presumptuous ideas and customs
in light of which they are condemned morally.
Their “sense of honor” bids them cheat and revile that other human world and
its values. In contradiction to the customs of normal people, they feel
non-fulfillment of their promises or obligations is customary behavior.
They also learn how their personalities can have traumatizing effects on the
personalities of those normal people, and how to take advantage of this root
of terror for purposes of reaching their goals.
This dichotomy of worlds is permanent and does not disappear even if they
succeed in realizing their dreams of gaining power over the society of
normal people. This proves that the separation is biologically conditioned.
In such people a dream emerges like some youthful Utopia of a “happy” world
and a social system which would not reject them or force them to submit to
laws and customs whose meaning is incomprehensible to them. They dream of a
world in which their simple and radical way of experiencing and perceiving
reality [i.e. lying, cheating, destroying, using others, etc] would
dominate, where they would, of course, be assured safety and prosperity.
Those “others” - different, but also more technically skillful - should be
put to work to achieve this goal. “We,” after all, will create a new
government, one of justice [for psychopaths]. They are prepared to fight and
suffer for the sake of such a brave new world, and also of course, to
inflict suffering upon others.
Such a vision justifies killing people whose
suffering does not move them to compassion because “they” are not quite con-specific.
And there it is.
Lobaczewski has said outright that psychopaths - from a
certain perspective - are a different type of human being, a type that is
aware of its difference from childhood. Put this together with his statement
that such individuals recognize their own kind, and consider normal people
as completely “other,” and we can begin to understand why and how
conspiracies can and do exist among such individuals.
They collect together,
with similar worldviews, like fat floating on a bowl of soup. When one of
them begins to rant, others like them - or those with brain damage that
makes them susceptible - “rally round the flag,” so to say. And what's more,
they know this and know how it works.
Speaking of networks, we need to take a closer look at how psychopaths
affect other human beings whom they use to create the basis for their rule
in macro-social dynamics. This highlights the fact that the lack of
psychological knowledge among the general public, not to mention the general
neurosis of most people, make them vulnerable to such predators.
Subordinating a normal person to psychologically abnormal
individuals has a deforming effect on his personality: it engenders trauma
and neurosis. This is accomplished in a manner which generally evades
sufficient conscious controls. [Wolves in Sheep's Clothing]
Such a situation
then deprives the person of his natural rights to practice his own mental
hygiene, develop a sufficiently autonomous personality, and utilize his
common sense. In the light of natural law, it thus constitutes a kind of
illegality which can appear in any social scale although it is not mentioned
in any code of law.
Psychologist George Simon, quoted above, discusses what he refers to as
“Covert-aggressive personalities” which, upon reading his book, reveal
themselves to be members of the psychopathy spectrum.
Aggressive personalities don’t like anyone pushing them to do what they
don’t want to do or stopping them from doing what they want to do. “No” is
never an answer they accept.
[In some cases], if they can see some benefit in self-restraint, they may
internalize inhibitions [and become covertly aggressive].
By refraining from any overt acts of hostility towards others, they manage
to convince themselves and others they’re not the ruthless people they are.
They may observe the letter of a law but violate its spirit with ease. They
may exhibit behavioral constraint when it’s in their best interest, but they
resist truly submitting themselves to any higher authority or set of
principles. [They are] striving primarily to conceal their true intentions
and aggressive agendas from others. They may behave with civility and
propriety when they’re closely scrutinized or vulnerable. But when they
believe they’re immune to detection, [they will do anything they want.]
Dealing with covert-aggressive personalities is like getting whiplash.
Often, you really don’t know what’s hit you until long after the damage is
Covert-aggressives are often so expert at exploiting the weaknesses and
emotional insecurities of others that almost anyone can be duped…
Covert-aggressives exploit situations in which they are well aware of the
vulnerability of their prey. They are often very selective about the kinds
of people with whom they will associate or work. They are particularly adept
at finding and keeping others in a one-down position. They relish being in
positions of power over others.
It’s my experience that how a person uses
power is the most reliable test of their character…
[Simon, op. cit.]
Now, just imagine that the almost 1 in 25 people mentioned by Martha stout:
“The Sociopath Next Door,” being the very ones who seek and achieve
positions of power and authority in just about any field of endeavor where
power can be had, and you begin to understand how truly damaging this can be
to an entire society. Imagine school teachers with power over your children
who are “covert-aggressives.”
Imagine doctors, psychologists, “ministers of
the faith” and politicians in such positions.
With this understanding, we begin to get an even better idea of how
psychopaths can conspire and actually pull it off: in a society where evil
is not studied or understood, they easily “rise to the top” and proceed to
condition normal people to accept their dominance, to accept their lies
As noted at the beginning of this section, Lobaczewski
Long periods of preoccupation with the self and “accumulating benefits” for
the self, diminish the ability to accurately read the environment and other
people. […]It is this feature, this hystericization of society, that enables
pathological plotters, snake charmers, and other primitive deviants to act
as essential factors in the processes of the origination of evil on a
We see exactly this pattern of social development in the United States over
the past 50 to 60 years or even more.
The fact is, many people who may have
been born “normal” have become what might be termed “secondary psychopaths”
or characteropaths due to the influence of psychopathy on American culture
from many fields - including science, medicine, psychology, law, etc - where
they are conscious of what they are doing to “normal” people!
We have already discussed the nature of some pathological
personalities - characteropathies - that may be “created” by an individual’s
exposure to a person with a severe character deformation. Essential
psychopathy has exceptionally intense effects in this manner. Something
mysterious gnaws into the personality of an individual at the mercy of the
psychopath, and it is fought like a demon. His emotions become chilled, his
sense of psychological reality is stifled.
This leads to decriterialization
of thought and a feeling of helplessness culminating in depressive reactions
which can be so severe that psychiatrists sometimes misdiagnose them as a
manic-depressive psychosis. Many people evidently also rebel much earlier
and start searching for some way to liberate themselves from such an
A social structure dominated by normal people and their conceptual world
easily appears to the psychopath as a “system of force and oppression. If it
happens that true injustice does, in fact, exist in that given society,
pathological feelings of unfairness and suggestive statements can resonate
among those who have truly been treated unfairly. Revolutionary doctrines
may then find approval among both groups although their motivations will
actually be quite different.
The presence of pathogenic bacteria in
our environment is a common phenomenon; however, it is not the single
decisive factor as regards whether an individual or a society becomes
ill. Similarly, psychopathological factors alone do not decide about the
spread of evil. […]
We can also include within psychopathic categories a somewhat indeterminate
number of anomalies with a hereditary substratum…
We also meet difficult individuals with a tendency to behave in a manner
hurtful to other people, for whom tests do not indicate existing damage to
brain tissue and there is no indication of abnormal child-rearing
background. The fact that such cases are repeated within families would
a hereditary substratum.[…]
Such people also attempt to mask their different world of experience and
play a role of normal people to varying degrees… These people participate in
the genesis of evil in very different ways, whether taking part openly or,
to a lesser extent, when they have managed to adapt to proper ways of
These psychopathies and related phenomena may, quantitatively
speaking, be summarily estimated at two or three times the number of cases
of essential psychopathy, i.e. at less than two per cent of the population.
Here I want to comment that, if we speculate the actual number of
psychopaths to be around 6 percent - or even just 4 percent as Stout claims
- then these other "people" Lobaczewski is talking about could be as
frequent as 12 to 18 percent of the population. That would mean that the
total number of psychopaths plus "almost psychopaths" would be 16 to 24
percent of the total population. However, it is obvious that the statistical
spread can be different in different countries at different times.
look at that issue further on.
This type of person finds it easier to adjust to social life.
The lesser cases in particular adapt to the demands of the society of normal
people, taking advantage of its understanding for the arts and other areas
with similar traditions. Their literary creativity is often disturbing if
conceived in ideational categories alone; they insinuate to their readers
that their world of concepts and experiences is self-evident, also it
actually contains characteristic deformities.
The most frequently indicated and known type is the asthenic psychopath
which appears in every conceivable intensity, from barely perceptible to an
obvious pathologic deficiency. These people,
not indicate the same glaring deficit in moral feeling and ability to sense
a psychological situation as it appears in essential psychopathy.
somewhat idealistic and tend to have superficial pangs of conscience as a
result of their faulty behavior. On the average, they are also less
intelligent than normal people, and their mind avoids consistency and
accuracy in reasoning. Their psychological worldview is clearly falsified,
so their options about people can never be trusted.
A kind of mask cloaks
the world of their personal aspirations which is at variance with the
official ones demanded by a situation. Their behavior towards people who do
not notice their faults is urbane, even friendly. However, the same people
manifest a pre-emptive hostility and aggression against persons with a
talent for psychology or proper knowledge in this area.
They are relatively less vital sexually and therefore amenable to accept
celibacy; that is why some Catholic monks and priests often represent lesser
or minor cases of this anomaly. They are the chief factor which inspired the
anti-psychological attitude traditional in Church thinking.
The more severe cases are more brutally anti-psychological and contemptuous
of normal people; they tend to be active in the processes of the genesis of
evil on a larger scale. Their dreams do not lack a certain idealism similar
to the ideas of normal people. They would like to reform the world to their
liking but are unable to foresee more far-reaching implications and results.
Spiced by deviance, their visions may influence naïve rebels of people who
have in fact suffered injustice.
Existing social injustice may look like a
justification for a radicalized world-view and the assimilation of such
The following is an example, given by Lobaczewski, of the thought-pattern of
a person who seems a typical and severe case of asthenic psychopathy:
“If I had to start life all over again, I’d do exactly the same: it’s
organic necessity, nor the dictates of duty. I have one thing which keeps me
going and bids me be serene even when things are so very sad.
That is an
unshakable faith in people. Conditions will change and evil will cease to
reign, and man will be a brother to man, not a wolf as is the case today. My
forbearance derives not from my fancy, but rather from my clear vision of
the cause which give rise to evil.”
Those words were written in prison on December 15, 1913 by
Felix Dzierzhynski, (1877-1926), who is best known as the first head of the Soviet
"Cheka," or Soviet security police, the forerunner of the KGB. Spreading
fear in a time of chaos, the Cheka was the perfect instrument for Stalin's
ruthless consolidation of power and extermination of opposition.
Dzierzhynski made Robespierre look like a pansy, being responsible for the
murder of literally millions of people.
If the time ever comes when “conditions will change” and “evil will no
longer rule,” it could be because progress in the study of pathological
phenomena and their ponerogenic role will make it possible for societies to
quietly accept the existence of these phenomena and comprehend them as
categories of nature. The vision of a new, just structure of society can
then be realized within the framework and under the control of normal
Having reconciled ourselves to the fact that psychopaths are
different and have a limited capacity for social adjustment, we should
create a system of permanent protection for them within the framework of
reason and proper knowledge.
Here it should be noted that psychologically normal people constitute both
the great statistical majority of human type beings and thus, as Lobaczewski
points out, according to natural law, should be the ones to set the pace;
moral law is derived from their nature.
Power should be in the hands of
For our purposes, we should also draw attention to psychopathic types with
deviant features: these were isolated relatively long ago by Brzezicki and
accepted by E. Kretschmer as characteristic of Eastern Europe in particular.
Skirtoids are vital, egotistical, and thick-skinned individuals who make
good soldiers because of their endurance and psychological resistance. In
peacetime, however, they are incapable of understanding life’s subtler
matters or rearing the younger generation prudently. They are happy in
primitive surroundings; a comfortable environment easily causes
hysterization for them. They prove rigidly conservative in all areas and
supportive of governments that rule with a heavy hand.
Kretschmer was of the opinion that this anomaly was a biodynamic phenomenon
caused by the crossing of two widely removed ethnic groups which is frequent
in that area of Europe. If that were the case, North America should be full
of skirtoids. This anomaly should be taken into consideration if we wish to
understand the history of Russia, as well as Poland to a lesser extent.[…]
The above characterizations are selected examples of pathological factors
which participate in ponerogenic processes. […] The current state of
knowledge in this area is nevertheless still insufficient to produce
practical solutions to many human problems, particularly those on an
individual and family scale. […]
Some outstanding psychopathologists, convinced that developing a calm and
sufficient view of human reality is impossible without psychopathological
findings, are therefore unfortunately right, a conclusion difficult to
accept by people who believe they attained a mature world-view without such
burdensome studies. The defenders of the natural world-view have tradition,
belles-lettres, even philosophy on their side. They do not realize that
during present times, their manner of comprehending life’s questions renders
the battle with evil more problematic. […]
In attempting closer observation of these psychological processes and
phenomena which lead one man or one nation to hurt another, let us select
phenomena as characteristic as possible. We shall again become convinced
that the participation of various pathological factors in these processes is
the rule, not the exception.[…]
[O]ur social, psychological, and moral concepts, as well as our natural
forms of reaction, are not adequate for every situation with which life
confronts us. We generally wind up hurting someone if we engage our natural
concepts and reactive archetypes in situations which seem to be appropriate
to our imaginings although they are, in fact, essentially different. As a
rule, such different situations … occur because some pathological factor
difficult to understand has entered the picture. The practical value of our
natural world-view generally ends where psychopathology begins.
Familiarity with this common weakness of human nature and the normal
person’s “naiveté” is part of the specific knowledge we find in many
psychopathic individuals. Spellbinders of various schools attempt to provoke
such para-appropriate reactions from other people in the name of their
specific goals, or in the service of their reigning ideologies. That
hard-to-understand pathological factor is located within the spellbinder
We call egotism the attitude, subconsciously conditioned as a rule, thanks
to which we attribute excessive value to our instinctive reflex, early
acquired imaginings and habits, and individual world-view. …An egotist
measures other people by his own yardstick, treating his concepts and
experiential manner as objective criteria. He would like to force other
people to feel and think very much the same way he does. Egotist nations
have the subconscious goal of teaching or forcing other nations to think in
their own categories, which makes them incapable of understanding other
people and nations or becoming familiar with the values of their cultures.
Proper child rearing (and self-rearing) always aims at de-egotizing thereby
opening the mind. […]
The kind of excessive egotism which hampers the development of human values
and leads to misjudgment and terrorization of others well deserves the title
“King of human faults.” Difficulties, disputes, serious problems, and
neurotic reactions sprout up around such an egotist like mushrooms after a
rain. Egotist nations start wasting money and effort in order to achieve
goals derived from their erroneous reasoning and overly emotional reactions.
Their inability to acknowledge other nations’ values and dissimilitudes,
derived from other cultural traditions, leads to conflict and war. […]
If we analyze development of excessively egotistical personalities, we find
some non-pathological causes, such as having been raised in a constricted
and overly routine environment or by the persons less intelligent than the
child. However, the main reason is contamination, through psychological
induction, by excessively egotistical or hysterical persons who developed
this characteristic under the influence of various pathological causes. …
Many people with various hereditary deviations and acquired defects develop
pathological egotism. For such people, forcing others in their environment,
whole social groups, and, if possible, entire nations to feel and think like
themselves becomes an internal necessity, a ruling concept.
Some issue a
normal person would not take seriously becomes an often lifelong goal for
them, the object of effort, sacrifices, and cunning psychological strategy.
Pathological egotism derives from repressing from one’s field of
consciousness any objectionable self-critical associations referring to
one’s own nature or normality. Dramatic questions such as “who is abnormal
here, me or this world of people who feel and think differently?” are
answered in the world’s disfavor.
Such egotism is always linked to a
dissimulative attitude, with a Cleckley mask or some other pathological
quality being hidden from consciousness, both one’s own and that of other
The importance of the contribution of this kind of egotism to the genesis of
evil thus hardly needs elaboration. It is a primarily societal resource,
egotizing or traumatizing others, which in turn causes further difficulties.
Pathological egotism is a constant component of variegated states wherein
someone who appears to be normal (although he is in fact not quite so) is
driven by motivations or battles for goals a normal person considers
unrealistic or unlikely.
The average person asks:
“What could he expect to
gain by that?”
Environmental opinion, however, interprets such a situation
in accordance with “common sense” and is prone to accept a “more likely”
version of occurrence. Such interpretation often results in human tragedy.
We should thus always remember that the law principle of
becomes illusory whenever some pathological factor enters the picture. […]
In order to comprehend ponerogenic paths, especially those acting in a wider
social context, let us observe the roles and personalities of individuals we
shall call “spellbinders” who are highly active in this area in spite of
their statistically negligible number. They are generally the carriers of
various pathological factors, some characteropathies, and some inherited
Spellbinders are characterized by pathological egotism. Such a person is
forced by some internal causes to make an early choice between two
possibilities: the first is forcing other people to think and experience
things in a manner similar to his own; the second is a feeling of being
lonely and different, a pathological misfit in social life. Sometimes the
choice is either snake-charming or suicide.
Triumphant repression of self-critical or unpleasant concepts from the field
of consciousness gradually gives rise to [conversive thinking. i.e.
The conviction that moral values exist but that some actions violate moral
rules is so common and ancient a phenomenon that it seems to have some
substratum at man’s instinctive endowment level, and is not just a
representation of centuries of experience, culture, religions, and
Thus, any insinuation enclosed in a “moral slogan” is always
suggestive even if the “moral” criteria used are just an ad hoc invention.
Any act can thus be proved to be immoral or moral by means of using
“paramoralisms” through active suggestion and people who will succumb to
this manipulation are plentiful.
In searching for an example of an evil act whose negative value would not
elicit doubt in any social situation, ethics scholars frequently mention
However, psychologists often meet with paramoral affirmations
of such behavior in their practice.
Lobaczewski earlier gave the example of the woman with prefrontal-field
damage who was sadistically abusive to her child, but was supported in her
abuse of the child by her brothers who were totally under her influence and
convinced of her “exceptionally high moral qualifications."
heinous examples of this type of thing often occur in a religious context
where children have been beaten to death to “get the devil out.” It is
always done to “save their souls,” and that is an example of “paramoralism”
used in a conversive way.
We have certainly been subjected to this type of
use of "paramoralisms," but that's another story.
Paramoralistic statements and suggestions so often accompany various kinds
of evil that they seem quite irreplaceable. Unfortunately, it has become a
frequent phenomenon for individuals, oppressive groups, or patho-political
systems to invent ever-new moral criteria for someone’s convenience. Such
suggestions deprive people of their moral reasoning and deform its
development in children. Paramoralism factories have been founded worldwide,
and a ponerologist finds it hard to believe that they are managed by
psychologically normal people.
The conversive features in the genesis of paramoralisms seem to prove they
are derived from mostly subconscious rejection (and repression from the
field of consciousness) of something completely different which we call the
“voice of conscience.” … Like all conversive phenomena, the tendency to use
paramoralisms is psychologically contagious.
Lobaczewski points out that “paramoralisms” stream profusely from such
individuals so that they flood the average person’s mind.
To the spellbinder, everything becomes subordinated to their conviction that
they are exceptional, sometimes even messianic. An ideology can emerge from
such individuals that is certainly partly true, and the value of which is
claimed to be superior to all other ideologies. They believe they will find
many converts to their ideology and when they discover that this is not the
case, they are shocked and fume with “paramoral indignation.” The attitude
of most normal people to such spellbinders is generally critical, pained and
The spellbinder places on a high moral plane anyone who succumbs to his
influence, and he will shower such people with attention and property and
perks of all kinds. Critics are met with “moral” outrage and it will be
claimed by the spellbinder that the compliant minority is actually a
Such activity is always characterized by the inability to foresee its final
results, something obvious from the psychological point of view, because its
substratum contains pathological phenomena, and both spellbinding and
self-charming make it impossible to perceive reality accurately enough to
foresee results logically.
In a healthy society, the activities of spellbinders meet with criticism
effective enough to stifle them quickly. However, when they are preceded by
conditions operating destructively on common sense and social order - such
as social injustice, cultural backwardness, or intellectually limited rulers
manifesting pathological traits - spellbinders activities have led entire
societies into large-scale human tragedy.
Such an individual fishes an environment or society for people amenable to
his influence, deepening their psychological weaknesses until they finally
become a ponerogenic union.
On the other hand, people who have maintained their healthy critical
faculties intact, attempt to counteract the spellbinders’ activities and
their results, based on their own common sense and moral criteria. In the
resulting polarization of social attitudes, each side justifies itself by
means of moral categories.
The awareness that a spellbinder is always a pathological individual should
protect us from the known results of a moralizing interpretation of
pathological phenomena, ensuring us of objective criteria for more effective
[A high IQ] generally helps in immunity to spellbinders, but only
moderately. Actual differences in the formation of human attitudes under the
influence of such activities should be attributed to other properties of
human nature. The factor most decisive as regards assuming a critical
attitude is good basic intelligence, which conditions our perception of
We can also observe how a spellbinder’s activities
“husk out” amenable individuals with an astonishing regularity.
We shall give the name “ponerogenic association” to any group of people
characterized by ponerogenic processes of above-average social intensity,
wherein the carriers of various pathological factors function as inspirers,
spellbinders, and leaders, and where a proper pathological social structure
generates. Smaller, less permanent associations may be called “groups” or
“unions”. Such an association gives birth to evil which hurts the other
people as well as its own members.
We could list various names ascribed to such organizations by linguistic
tradition: gangs, criminal mobs, mafias, cliques, and coteries, which
cunningly avoid collision with the law while seeking to gain their own
advantage. Such unions frequently aspire to political power in order to
impose their expedient legislation upon society in the name of a suitably
prepared ideology, deriving advantages in the form of disproportionate
prosperity and satisfaction of their craving for power.[…]
One phenomenon all ponerogenic groups and associations have in common is the
fact that their members lose (or have already lost) the capacity to perceive
pathological individuals as such, interpreting their behavior in a
fascinated, heroic, or melodramatic way. The opinions, ideas, and judgments
of people carrying various psychological deficits are endowed with an
importance at least equal to that of outstanding individuals among normal
The atrophy of natural critical faculties with respect to
pathological individuals becomes an opening to their activities, and at the
same time a criterion for recognizing the association in concert as ponerogenic. Let us call this the
first criterion of ponerogenesis
Another phenomenon all ponerogenic associations have in common is their
statistically high concentration of individuals with various psychological
anomalies. Their qualitative composition is crucially important in the
formation of the entire union’s character, activities, development, or
Groups dominated by various kinds of characteropathic
individuals will develop relatively primitive activities, proving rather
easy for a society of normal people to break. Things are different when such
unions are inspired by psychopathic individuals. Let us adduce the following
example illustrating the roles of two different anomalies selected from
among events studied by the author.
In felonious youth gangs a specific role is played by boys (and occasionally
girls) carrying the characteristic results sometimes left behind by an
inflammation of parotid glands (the mumps). As mentioned, this disease
entails brain reactions in some cases, leaving behind a discreet but
permanent bleaching of feelings and a slight decrease in general mental
skills. Similar results are sometimes left behind after diphtheria. As a
result, such people easily succumb to more clever individuals’ suggestions.
When sucked into a felonious group, they become faint-critical helpers and
executors of the latter’s’ intentions, tools in the hands of more
treacherous, usually psychopathic, leaders. Once arrested, they submit to
their leaders’ insinuated explanations that the higher (paramoral) group
idea demands they become scapegoats, taking the majority of blame upon
Individuals with the above mentioned post-mumps and post-diphtheria traits
constitute less than 1.0% of the population as a whole, but their share
reaches 25 percent of juvenile delinquent groups. This represents an
inspissation of the order of 30-fold, requiring no further methods of
statistical analysis. When studying the contents of ponerogenic unions
skillfully enough, we often meet with an inspissation of other psychological
anomalies which also speak for themselves.
Two basic types of the above mentioned unions should be differentiated:
Primary ponerogenic and secondary ponerogenic.
Let us describe as primarily ponerogenic a union whose abnormal members were active since the very
beginning, playing the role of crystallizing catalysts as early as a process
for creation of the group occurred.
We shall call secondarily ponerogenic a
union which was founded in the name of some idea with an independent social
meaning generally comprehensible within the categories of the natural
world-view, but which later succumbed to a certain moral degeneration. This
in turn opened the door to infection and activation of the pathological
factors within, and later to a ponerization of the group as a whole, or
often of its fraction.
From the very outset, a primarily ponerogenic union is a foreign body within
the organism of society, its character colliding with the moral values
respected by the majority. The activities of such groups provoke opposition
and disgust and are considered immoral; as a rule, therefore, such groups do
not spread large, nor do not metastasize into numerous unions. They finally
lose their battle with society.
In order to have a chance to develop into a large ponerogenic association,
however, it suffices that some human organization, characterized by social
or political goals and an ideology with some creative valued, be accepted by
a larger number of normal people before it succumbs to a process of
ponerogenic malignancy. The primary tradition and ideological values may
then for a long time protect a union which has succumbed to ponerization
process from the healthy common sense of society, especially its less
When the ponerogenic process touches such a human organization, which
emerged and acted in the name of political or social goals whose causes were
conditioned in history and the social situation, the original group’s
primary values will nourish and protect such a union - in spite of the fact
that those primary values succumb to characteristic degeneration, their
practical function becoming completely different from the primary one -
because the names and symbols are retained. Individual and social “common
sense” thereby uncovers its weakest spot. […]
Within each ponerogenic union, a psychological structure is created which
can be considered a counterpart or caricature of the normal structure of
society or a societal organization. Individuals with various psychological
aberrations complement each other’s talents and characteristics. … Earlier
phases of the union’s activity are usually dominated by characteropathic,
particularly paranoidal, individuals, who often play an inspirational or
spellbinding role in the ponerization process. At this point in time, the
union still indicates a certain romantic feature and is not yet
characterized by excessively brutal behavior. Soon, however, the more normal
members are pushed into fringe functions and excluded…
Individuals with inherited deviations then progressively take over the
inspirational and leadership positions. The role of essential psychopaths
A spellbinder at first simultaneously plays the leader in a
group. Later there appears another kind of “leadership talent,” a more vital
individual who often joined the organization later, once it has already
succumbed to ponerization. The spellbinding individual, being weaker, is
forced to come to terms with being shunted into the shadows and recognizing
the new leader’s “genius” unless he accepts the threat of total failure.
Roles are parceled out.
The spellbinder needs support from the primitive but
decisive leader, who in turn needs the spellbinder to uphold the
association’s ideology, so essential to maintain the proper attitude on the
part of those members of the rank and file who betray a tendency to
criticism and doubt of the moral variety. The spellbinder must repackage the
ideology appropriately, sliding new contents under old titles, so that it
can continue fulfilling its propaganda function under ever-changing
He has also to uphold the leader’s mystique inside and outside
the association. Complete trust cannot exist between the two, however, since
the leader secretly has contempt for the spellbinder and his ideology,
whereas the latter despises the leader for being such a coarse individual.
The showdown is always probable; whoever is weaker becomes the loser.
The structure of such a union undergoes further variegation and
specialization. A chasm opens between the more normal masses and the elite
initiates, who are as a rule more pathological. This later subgroup becomes
ever more dominated by hereditary pathological factors, the former by the
after-effects of various diseases affecting the brain, less typically
psychopathic individuals, and people whose malformed personalities were
caused by early deprivation or brutal child-rearing methods on the part of
There is less and less room for normal people in
the group. The leaders’ secrets and intentions are kept hidden from the
union’s proletariat; the products of the spellbinders’ work must suffice for
An observer watching such a union’s activities from the outside and using
the natural psychological world-view will always tend to overestimate the
role of the leader and his allegedly autocratic function. The spellbinders
and the propaganda apparatus are mobilized to maintain this erroneous
outside opinion. The leader, however, is dependent upon the interests of the
union, especially the elite initiates, to an extent greater than he himself
He wages a constant position-jockeying battle; he is an actor with a
director. In macro-social unions, this position is generally occupied by a
more representative individual not deprived of certain critical faculties;
initiating him into all those plans and criminal calculations would be
counterproductive. In conjunction with part of the elite, a group of
psychopathic individuals hiding behind the scene steers the leader like
Borman and his clique steered Hitler.
If the leader does not fulfill his
assigned role, he generally knows that the clique representing the elite of
the union is in a position to kill or otherwise remove him.[…]
The Ponerization Process
Observation of the ponerization processes of various human unions throughout
history easily leads to the conclusion that the initial step is a moral
warping of the group’s ideational contents. […]
Lobczewski discusses at length how ideology is twisted and distorted by the
infiltration of pathological persons into any group that might be going in a
A very good example is Communism which is, in fact,
according to the New Testament, a Christian ideology.
Communist groups had been infiltrated, the Ponerization process began, and
Communism became merely a type of Fascist Corporatocracy with the
corporation being "the state."
When a ponerogenic process encompasses a society’s entire ruling class, or
nation, or when opposition on the part of normal people’s societies is
stifled - as a result of the mass character of the phenomenon, or by using
spellbinding means and physical compulsion - we are dealing with
macro-social ponerologic phenomenon.
At that time, however, a society’s tragedy, often coupled with that of the
researcher’s own suffering, are opening before him an entire volume of
ponerologic knowledge, where he can read all about the laws governing such
processes if he is only able to familiarize himself in time with its
naturalistic language and its different grammar. Studies in the genesis of
evil which are based on observing small groups of people can indicate the
details of these laws to us. […]
I shall accept the denomination of “pathocracy” for a system of government
thus created, wherein a small pathological minority takes control over a
society of normal people. The name thus selected above all underscores the
basic quality of the macro social psychopathological phenomenon, which
differentiates it from the many possible social systems dominated by normal
people’s structure, custom, and law. …
I think this name is consistent with
the demands of semantics, since no concise term can adequately characterize
such a complex phenomenon.
Political Implications of the Pathocracy
Pathocrats’ achievement of absolute domination in the government of a
country would not be permanent, since large sectors of the society would
become disaffected by such rule and find some way of toppling it.
Pathocracy at the summit of governmental organization also does not
constitute the entire picture of the “mature phenomenon”. Such a system of
government has nowhere to go but down.
Any leadership position - down to village headman and community cooperative
mangers, not to mention the directors of police units, and special-services
police personnel, and activists in the pathocratic party - must be filled by
individuals whose feeling of linkage to such a regime is conditioned by
corresponding psychological deviations, which are inherited as a rule.
However, such people become more valuable because they constitute a very
small percentage of the population. Their intellectual level or professional
skills cannot be taken into account, since people representing superior
abilities with the requisite psychological deviations - are even harder to
After such a system has lasted several years, one hundred percent of
all the cases of essential psychopathy are involved in pathocratic activity;
they are considered the most loyal, even though some of them were formerly
involved on the other side in some way.
Under such conditions, no area of social life can develop normally, whether
in economics, culture, science, technology, administration, etc.
Pathocracy progressively paralyzes everything.
Reasonable people must develop a level of patience beyond the ken of anyone
living in a normal man’s system, just to explain what to do and how to do it
to some obtuse mediocre psychological deviant. This special pedagogy
requires a great deal of time and effort, but it would otherwise not be
possible to maintain tolerable living conditions and necessary achievements
in the economic area or intellectual life of a society. However, pathocracy
progressively intrudes everywhere and dulls everything.
Those people who initially found the original ideology attractive eventually
come to the realization that they are in fact dealing with something else.
The disillusionment experienced by such former ideological adherents is
bitter in the extreme.
The pathological minority’s attempts to retain power will thus always be
threatened by the society of normal people whose criticism keeps growing. On
the other hand, any and all methods of terror and exterminatory policies
must therefore be used against individuals known for the patriotic feelings
and military training; on the other, specific “indoctrination” activities
such as those we have presented are also utilized.
natural feeling of being linked to society become irreplaceable in either of
these activities. The foreground must again be occupied by cases of
essential psychopathy, followed by those with similar anomalies, and finally
by people alienated from the society in question as a result of racial or
The phenomenon of pathocracy matures during this period: an extensive and
active indoctrination system is built, with a suitably refurbished ideology
constituting the vehicle of Trojan horse for the process of pathologizing
the thought of individuals and society. The goal is never admitted: forcing
human minds to incorporate pathological experiential methods and thought
patterns, and consequently accepting such rule. […]
During the initial shock, the feeling of social links are fading; after that
has been survived, however, the overwhelming majority of people manifests
its own phenomenon of psychological immunization. Society simultaneously
starts collecting practical knowledge on the subject of this new reality and
its psychological properties. Normal people slowly learn to perceive the
weak spots of such a system and utilize the possibilities of more expedient
arrangement of their lives.
They begin to give each other advice in these
matters, thus slowly regenerating the feelings of social links and
reciprocal trust. A new phenomenon occurs: separation between the pathocrats
and the society of normal people. The latter have an advantage as regards
talent, professional skills, and healthy common sense. They therefore hold
The pathocracy finally realizes that it must find some “modus
vivendi” or relations with the majority of society:
“After all, somebody’s
got to do the work for us.”
There are other needs and pressures, especially from outside. The
pathological face must be hidden from the world somehow, since recognition
by world opinion would be a catastrophe. … Primarily in the interests of the
new elite and its expansionary plans, a pathocratic state must maintain
commercial relations with the countries of normal man. Such a state aims to
achieve international recognition as a certain kind of political structural;
it fears recognition in terms of clinical diagnosis.
All this makes
pathocrats tend to limit their measures of terror, subjecting
propaganda and indoctrination methods to certain cosmetology and to accord
the society they control some margin of autonomous activity, especially as
regards cultural life. The more liberal pathocrats would not be averse to
giving such a society a certain minimum of economic prosperity in order to
reduce the irritation level, but their own corruption and inability to
administer the economy prevents them from doing so.
This great societal disease runs its course through a new phase: methods of
activity become milder, and there is coexistence with countries whose
structure is that of normal man. Anyone studying this phenomenon… is
reminded rather of the dissimulative state of phase of a patient attempting
to play the role of a normal person, hiding the pathological reality
although he continues to be sick or abnormal.
Let us therefore use the term
“the dissimulative phase of pathocracy” for the state of affairs wherein a
pathocratic system ever more skillfully plays the role of a normal
sociopolitical system. In this state, people become resistant and adapt
themselves to the situation within a country affected by this phenomenon;
outside, however, this phase is marked by outstanding ponerogenic activity.
The pathological material of this system rather easily infiltrates into
other societies, particularly if they are more primitive, and all the
avenues of pathocratic expansion are facilitated because of the decrease of
common sense criticism on the part of the nations constituting the territory
Meanwhile, in the pathocratic country, the active structure of government
rests in the hands of psychopathic individuals, and essential psychopathy
plays a starring role. Especially during the dissimulative phase. However,
individuals with obvious pathological traits must be removed from certain
areas of activity: namely, political posts with international exposure where
such personalities could betray the pathological contents of the phenomenon.
Similar needs apply to other areas as well. The building director for a new
factory is often someone barely connected with the pathocratic system but
whose skills are essential. Once the plant is operational, further
administration is taken over by pathocrats which often leads to technical
ruin. The army similarly needs people endowed with perspicacity and
essential qualifications, especially in the area of modern weapons. …
In such a state of affairs, many people are forced to adapt, accepting the
ruling system as a status quo but also criticizing it. They fulfill their
duties amid doubts and conflicts of conscience, always searching for a more
sensible way out which they discuss within trusted circles. …
The following question thus suggests itself: what happens if the network of
understandings among psychopaths achieves power in leadership positions with
international exposure? This can happen, especially during the later phases
of the phenomenon. Goaded by their character, such people thirst for just
that even though it would conflict with their own life interest… They do not
understand that a catastrophe would ensue. Germs are not aware that they
will be burned alive or buried deep in the ground along with the human body
whose death they are causing.
If the many managerial positions of a government are assumed by individuals
deprived of sufficient abilities to feel and understand most other people
and who also have deficiencies as regards technical imagination and
practical skills - faculties indispensable for governing economic and
political matters - this must result in an exceptionally serious crisis in
all areas, both within the country in question and with regard to
Within, the situation shall become unbearable even
for those citizens who were able to feather their nest into a relatively
comfortable “modus vivendi”. Outside, other societies start to feel the
pathological quality of the phenomenon quite distinctly. Such a state of
affairs cannot last long. One must then be prepared for ever more rapid
changes, and also behave with great circumspection.
Pathocracy is a disease of great social movements followed by entire
societies, nations, and empires.
In the course of human history, it has
affected social, political, and religious movements as well as the
accompanying ideologies… and turned them into caricatures of themselves….
This occurred as a result of the … participation of pathological agents in a pathodynamically similar process. That explains why all the
the world are, and have been, so similar in their essential properties. …
Identifying these phenomena through history and properly qualifying them
according to their true nature and contents - not according to the ideology
in question, which succumbed to the process of caricaturization - is a job
for historians. […]
The actions of [pathocracy] affect an entire society, starting with the
leaders and infiltrating every town, business, and institution. The
pathological social structure gradually covers the entire country creating a
“new class” within that nation. This privileged class feels permanently
threatened by the “others”, i.e. by the majority of normal people. Neither
do the pathocrats entertain any illusions about their personal fate should
there be a return to the system of normal man.
A normal person deprived of privilege or high position goes about performing
some work which would earn him a living; but pathocrats never possessed any
practical talent, and the time frame of their rule has eliminated any
residual possibilities of adapting to the demands of normal work.
If the law
of normal man were to be reinstalled, they and their kind could be subjected
to judgments, including a moralizing interpretation of their psychological
deviations; they would be threatened by a loss of freedom and life, not
merely a loss of position and privilege. Since they are incapable of this
kind of sacrifice, the survival of a system which is the best for them
becomes a moral idea. Such a threat must be battled by means of
psychological and political cunning and a lack of scruples with regard to
those others “inferior- quality” people.
In general, this new class is in the position to purge its leaders should
their behavior jeopardize the existence of such a system. …Pathocracy
survives thanks to the feeling of being threatened by the society of normal
people, as well by other countries wherein various forms of the system of
normal man persist. For the rulers, staying on the top is therefore the
classic problem of “to be or not to be”.
We can thus formulate a more cautious question: can such a system ever waive
territorial and political expansion abroad and settle for its present
What would happen if a state of affairs ensued which conferred internal
peace, corresponding order, and relative prosperity within the nation?
The overwhelming majority of the country’s population - being normal - would
make skillful use of all the emerging possibilities, taking advantage of
their superior qualifications to fight for an ever-increasing scope of
activities. Thanks to their higher numbers, there would be a higher birth
rate of their kind, and their power would increase.
This majority would be
joined by some sons from the privileged class who did not inherit the
psychopathic genes. The pathocracy’s dominance would weaken steadily,
finally leading to a situation wherein the society of normal people take
back the power. To the pathocrats, this is a known and nightmarish vision.
Thus, the biological, psychological, moral, and economic destruction of this
majority of normal people is a “biological” necessity to the pathocrats.
Many means serve this end, starting with concentration camps and including
warfare with an obstinate, well-armed foe who will devastate and debilitate
the human power thrown at him, namely the very power jeopardizing pathocrats
rule. Once safely dead, the soldiers will thereupon be decreed heroes to be
revered, useful for raising a new generation faithful to the pathocracy.
Any war waged by a pathocratic nation has two fronts, the internal and the
external. The internal front is more important for the leaders and the
governing elite, and the internal threat is the deciding factor where
unleashing war is concerned. In pondering whether to start a war against the
pathocratic country, one must therefore give primary consideration to the
fact that one can be used as an executioner of the common people whose
increasing power represents incipient jeopardy for the pathocracy. After
all, pathocrats give short shrift to blood and suffering of people they
consider to be not quite conspecific. […]
Pathocracy has other internal reasons for pursuing expansionism through the
use of all means possible. As long as that “other” world governed by the
systems of normal man exists, it inducts into and within the strivings of
the non-pathological majority, thereby creating a certain sense of
The non-pathological majority of the country’s population will
never stop dreaming of the reinstatement of normal man’s system in any
possible form. This majority will never stop watching other countries,
waiting for the opportune moment; its attention and power must therefore be
distracted from this purpose, and the masses must be educated and channeled
in the direction of imperialist strivings. Such goals must be pursued
doggedly so that everyone knows what is being fought for and in whose name a
harsh discipline and poverty must be endured.
This latter factor effectively
limits the possibility of “subversive” activities on the part of the society
of normal people.
The ideology must of course furnish a corresponding justification for this
alleged right to conquer the world, and must therefore be properly
elaborated. Expansionism is derived from the very nature of pathocracy, not
from ideology, but this fact must be masked by ideology. […]
On the other hand, there are countries with normal man’s governments wherein
the overwhelming majority of societies shudder to think a similar system
could be imposed on them.
The governments of such nations thereupon do
everything they can within the framework of their possibilities and their
understanding of the phenomenon in order to contain its expansion. The
citizens of those countries would sigh with relief if some upheaval were to
replace this malevolent and incomprehensible system with a more human, more
easily understood governmental method with whom peaceful coexistence would
Such countries thus undertake various means of action for this purpose,
their quality depending on the possibility of understanding that other
Economic factors constitute a non-negligible part of the motivation for this
expansionist tendency. Since the managerial functions have been taken over
by individuals with mediocre intelligence and pathological character traits,
the pathocracy becomes incapable of properly administering anything at all.
The collected prosperity of conquered nations can be exploited for a
time, the citizens forced to work harder for paltry remuneration. For the
moment, no thought is given to the fact that a pathocratic system within a
conquered country will eventually cause similar unproductive conditions;
after all corresponding self-knowledge in this area is nonresistant in the
As has been the case for centuries, military power is of course, the primary
means for achieving these ends. Throughout the centuries, whenever history
registered the appearance of the phenomenon described heron, specific
measures of influence have also become apparent - something in the order of
specific intelligence in the service of international intrigue facilitating
conquest. This quality is derived from the personality characteristics
inspiring the overall phenomenon; it should constitute data for historians
to identify this type of phenomenon throughout history.
Psychopaths exist everywhere in the world; even a faraway
a resonating response in them, working on their underlying feeling that
“there is a place for people like us there”. Uncritical, frustrated, and
abused people also exist everywhere and they can be reached by appropriately
The future of a nation is greatly dependent on how
many such people it contains. Thanks to its specific psychological knowledge
and its conviction that normal people are naïve, a pathocracy is able to
improve its “anti-psychotherapeutic” techniques, and pathologically
egotistical as usual, to insinuate its deviant world of concepts to others.
The law furnishes insufficient support for counteracting a phenomenon whose
character lies outside the possibilities of the legislators imagination.
Pathocracy knows how to take advantage of the weaknesses of such a
legalistic manner of thinking. […]
Whenever a nation experiences a “system crisis” or a hyperactivity of
ponerogenic processes within, it becomes the object of a pathocratic
penetration whose purpose is to serve up the country as booty. It will then
become easy to take advantage of its internal weaknesses and revolutionary
movements in order to impose rule on the basis of a limited use of force. …
After forcible imposition of such a system, the course of pathologization of
life becomes different; and such a pathocracy will be less stable, depending
for its very existence upon the factor of never-ending outside force….
Brute force must first stifle the resistance of an exhausted nation; people
possessing military or leadership skills must be disposed of, and anyone
appealing to moral values and legal principles must be silenced. The new
principles are never explicitly enunciated. People must learn the new
unwritten law via painful experience. The stultifying influence of this
deviant world of concepts finishes the job, and common sense demands caution
This is followed by a shock which appears as tragic as it is frightening.
Some people from every social group - whether abused paupers, aristocrats
officials, literati, students, scientists, priests,, atheists, or nobodies
known to no one - suddenly start changing their personality and world-view.
Decent Christian and patriots just yesterday, they now expose the new
ideology and behave contemptuously to anyone still adhering to the old
values. Only later does it become evident that this ostensibly avalanche
like process has it s natural limits. …
Pathocracy imposed by force arrives in a finished form - we could even call
it ripe. People observing it up close were unable to distinguish the earlier
phases of its development; when the schizoidals and characteropaths were in
In an imposed system, psychopathic material is already dominant…[…]
The first conclusion which suggested itself soon after meeting with the
“professor” [discussed earlier] was that the phenomenon’s development is
limited by nature in terms of the participation of susceptible individuals
within a given society. The initial evaluation of approximately 6 % proved
Progressively collected detailed statistical data assembled later
did not contradict this assessment. This value varies from country to
country in the magnitude of about one percentage point up or down.
…Essential psychopathy plays a disproportionate role compared to the numbers
by saturating the phenomenon as a whole with its own quality of thought and
Other psychopathies - asthenic, schizoidal, anankastic,
hysterical, et al - definitely play second fiddle although in sum they are
much more numerous. Relatively primitive skirtoidal individuals become
fellow travelers, goaded by their lust for life, but their activities are
limited by considerations of their own advantage.
In non-Semitic nations,
schizoidals are somewhat more numerous than
essential psychopaths; although highly active in the early phases of the
genesis of the phenomenon, they betray an attraction to pathocracy as well
the rational distance of efficient thinking. Thus, they are torn between
such a system and the society of normal people.
There are persons less distinctly inclined in the pathocratic direction.
These include states caused by the toxic activities of certain substances
such as ether, carbon monoxide, and possibly some endotoxins. [Such as
nicotine? Perhaps we have now found the reason that the current pathocracy
and the former one - Nazi Germany - were so Fascist in their imposition of
Paranoidal individuals expect uncritical support within such a system. In
general, however, the carriers of various kinds of brain tissue damage lean
clearly to the society of normal people and, as a result of their
psychological problems, under a pathocracy, suffer even more than healthy
It also turned out that the carriers of some physiological anomalies known
to physicians and sometimes to psychologists, and which are primarily
hereditary in nature, manifest split tendencies similar to schizoids. In a
similar manner, people whom nature has unfortunately saddled with a short
life and an early cancer-related death frequency indicate a characteristic
and irrational attraction for this phenomenon. … An individuals’ decreased
resistance to the effects of pathocracy and his attraction to it appears to
be a holistic response of the person’s organism, not merely of his
psychological makeup alone.
Approximately 6 % of the population constitute the active structure of the
pathocracy, which carries its own peculiar consciousness of its own goals.
Twice as many people constitute a second group: those who have managed to
warp their personalities to meet the demands of the new reality. …
This second group consists of individuals who are, on the average, weaker,
more sickly, and less vital. The frequency of known mental diseases in this
group is at twice the rate of the national average. We can thus assume that
the genesis of their submissive attitude toward the regime, their greater
susceptibility to pathological effects, and their skittish opportunism
includes various relatively impalpable anomalies. …
The 6 % group constitute the new nobility; the 12 % group forms the new
bourgeoisie, whose economic situation is the most advantageous. …Only 18 %
of the country’s population is thus in favor of the new system of
The great majority of the population forms the society of normal people,
creating an informal communications network. It behooves us to wonder why
these people reject the advantages conformity affords, consciously
preferring the opposing role: poverty, harassment, and curtailment of human
freedoms. What ideals motivate them? Is this merely a kind of romanticism?
A person with a normal human instinctive substratum, good basic
intelligence, and full faculties of critical thought would have a difficult
time accepting such a compromise; it would devastate his personality and
engender neurosis. AT the same time, such a system easily distinguishes and
separates him from its own kind regardless of his sporadic hesitations. No
method of propaganda can change the nature of this macro social phenomenon
or the nature of a normal human being. They remain forever foreign to each
After a typical pathocratic structure has been formed, the population is
effectively divided according to completely different lines from what
someone raised outside the purview of this phenomenon might imagine, and in
a manner whose actual conditions are also impossible to comprehend…. Pathocracy corrodes the entire social organism, wasting its skills and
power. … Typical pathocrats take over all the managerial functions in a
totally destroyed structure of a nation. Such a state must be short-term,
since no ideology can vivify it. The time comes when the common masses of
people want to live like human beings and the system can no longer resist.
Pathocracy is even less of a socioeconomic system than a social structure or
political system. It is a macro social disease process affecting entire
nations and running the course of its characteristic pathodynamic
properties. … As long as we keep using methods of comprehending this
pathological phenomenon which attempt to use political doctrines to define
it, (even if those doctrines are heterogeneous to it) we will not be able to
identify the causes and properties of the disease.
prepared ideology will be able to cloak the essential qualities from the
minds of scientists, politicians, and common people.
Normal People Under Pathocratic Rule
As adduced above, the anomaly distinguished as essential
inspires the overall phenomenon in a well-developed pathocracy… The
pathocratic world - the world of pathological egotism and terror - is so
difficult to understand for people raised outside the scope of this
phenomenon that they often manifest childlike naïveté, even if they studied
psychopathology and are psychologists by profession. …
If a person with a normal instinctive substratum and basic intelligence has
already heard and read about such a system of ruthless autocratic rule
“based on fanatical ideology,” he feels he has already formed an opinion on
the subject. However, direct confrontation with the phenomenon causes him to
feel intellectually helpless. All his prior imaginings prove to be virtually
useless; they explain next to nothing. This provokes a nagging sensation
that he and the society in which he was educated were quite naïve…
One of the differences observed between a normally resistant person and
somebody who has undergone a transpersonification is that the former is
better able to survive this disintegrating cognitive void, whereas the
latter fills the void with the pathologic propaganda material, and without
When the human mind comes into contact with this new reality so different
from any experiences encountered by a person raised in a society dominated
by normal people, it releases psychophysiological shock symptoms in the
human brain with a higher tonus of cortex inhibition and a stifling of
feelings, which then sometimes gush forth uncontrollably. Human minds work
more slowly and less keenly, since the associative mechanisms have become
Especially when a person has direct contact with
representatives of the new rule, who use their specific experience so as to
traumatize the minds of the “others” with their own personalities, his mind
succumbs to a state of short-term catatonia. Their humiliating and arrogant
techniques, brutal paramoralizations, deaden his thought processes and his
self-defense capabilities, and their divergent experiential method anchors
in his mind. …
Only after these unbelievably unpleasant psychological states have passed,
thanks to rest in benevolent company, is it possible to reflect - always a
difficult and painful process - or to become aware that one’s mind and
common senses have been fooled by something which cannot fit into the normal
Man and society stands at the beginning of a long road of unknown
experiences which, after much trial and error, finally leads to a certain
hermetic knowledge of what the qualities of the phenomenon are and how best
to build up psychological resistance thereto. Especially during the
dissimulative phase, this makes it possible to adapt to life in this
different world and thus arrange more tolerable living conditions.
thereupon observe psychological phenomena, knowledge, immunization, and
adaptation such as could not have been predicted before and which cannot be
understood in the world remaining under the rule of normal man's systems. A
normal person, however, can never completely adapt to a pathological system;
it is easy to be pessimistic about the final results of this.
Such experiences are exchanged during evening discussions among a circle of
friends, thereby creating within people's minds a kind of cognitive
conglomeration which is initially incoherent and contains factual
The ideology officially preached by the pathocracy
continues to retain its ever-diminishing suggestive powers until such time
as human reason manages to localize it as something subordinate, which is
not descriptive of the essence of phenomenon. [...]
Under such conditions, both instinct and feelings and the resulting basic
intelligence play instrumental roles, stimulating man to make selections
which are to a great extent subconscious.
Under the conditions created by imposed pathocratic rule ... our natural
human instinctive substratum is an instrumental factor in joining the
opposition. Similarly, the environmental, economic, and ideological
motivations which influenced the formation of an individual personality,
including those political attitudes which were assumed earlier... disappear
within the statistical approach and diminish through the years of
The decisions and the way-selections made back to the
society of normal people are finally decided by factors usually inherited by
biological means, and thus not the product of the person's option, and
predominantly in subconscious processes.
Man's general intelligence, especially its intellectual level, play a
relatively limited role in this process of selecting a path of action, as
expressed by statistically significant but low correlation (-0.16). The
higher a person's general level of talent, the harder it usually is for him
to reconcile himself with this different reality and find a modus vivendi
At the same time, gifted and talented people do join the
harsh words of contempt for the system can be heard on the part of simple,
Only those people with the highest degree of intelligence - which, as
mentioned, does not accompany psychopathies - are unable to find the meaning
of life within such a system. They are sometimes able to take advantage of
their superior mentality in order to find exceptional ways in which to be
useful to others.
Wasting the best talents spells eventual catastrophe for any social system.
Since those factors subject to the laws of genetics have proven decisive,
society becomes divided into the adherents of the new rule, the new middle
class mentioned above, and the majority opposition by means of criteria not
Since the properties which cause this new division appear in more or less
equal proportions within any old social group or level, this new division
cuts right through these traditional layers of society. If we treat the
former stratification, whose formation was decisively influenced by the
talent factor, as horizontal, the new one should be referred to as vertical.
The most instrumental factor in the latter is good basic intelligence which,
as we already know, is widely distributed throughout all social groups.
Even those people who were the object of social injustice in the former
system and then bestowed with another system which allegedly protected them
slowly start criticizing the latter. [...]
One of the first discoveries made by a society of normal people is that it
is superior to the new rulers in intelligence and practical skills, no
matter what geniuses they appear to be [via spellbinding]. The knots
stultifying reason are gradually loosened, and fascination with the new
rulership's secret knowledge and plan of action begins to diminish, followed
by familiarization with the knowledge about this new reality.
The world of normal people is always superior to the other one whenever
constructive activity is needed, whether it be the reconstruction of a
devastated country, the area of technology, the organization of economic
life, or scientific and medical work. [...]
As we have already pointed out, every psychological anomaly is in fact a
kind of deficiency. Psychopathies are based primarily upon deficiencies in
the instinctive substratum; however, their influence exerted upon mental
development also leads to deficiencies in general intelligence, as discussed
This deficiency is not compensated by the creation of the special
psychological knowledge we observe among some psychopaths.
Such knowledge loses its mesmerizing power when normal people learn to
understand these phenomena as well. The psychopathologist was thus not
surprised by the fact that the world of normal people is dominant as regards
skill and talent. For that society, however, this represented a discovery
which engendered hope and psychological relaxation.
Since our intelligence is superior to theirs, we can recognize them and
understand how they think and act. This is what a person learns in such a
system on his own initiative, forced by everyday needs. He learns it while
working in his office, school, or factory, whether he needs to deal with the
authorities, and when he is arrested--something only a few people manage to
The author and many others learned a good deal about the psychology
of this macro social phenomenon during compulsory indoctrinational
schooling. The organizers and lecturers cannot have intended such a result.
Practical knowledge of this new reality thus grows, thanks to which the
society gains a resourcefulness of action which enables it to take ever
better advantage of the weak spots of the rulership system.
gradual reorganization of societal links, which bears fruit with time....
Capitalism and Psychopathy
The members of the
Quantum Future School have been engaged in studying
psychopathy and pseudo-psychopathy for several years. This has certainly
prepared most of us to be able to see the man behind the curtain, or, in
this case, behind the “mask of sanity”.
These studies led to the question:
why does psychopathic behavior seem to be so widespread in the US. (That is
not to say that it doesn’t exist everywhere - that’s a given.)
Linda Mealey of the Department of Psychology at the College of St. Benedict
in St. Joseph, Minnesota, has recently proposed certain ideas in her paper:
The Sociobiology of Sociopathy - An Integrated Evolutionary Model.
ideas address the increase in psychopathy in American culture by suggesting
that in a competitive society - capitalistic by definition - psychopathy is
adaptive and likely to increase.
“I have thus far argued that some individuals seem to have a genotype that
disposes them to [psychopathy].
[Psychopathy describes] frequency-dependent, genetically based, individual
differences in employment of life strategies. [Psychopaths] always appear in
every culture, no matter what the socio-cultural conditions. [...]
Competition increases the use of antisocial and Machiavellian strategies and
can counteract pro-social behavior…
Some cultures encourage competitiveness more than others and these
differences in social values vary both temporally and cross-culturally.
[...] Across both dimensions, high levels of competitiveness are associated
with high crime rates and Machiavellianism.
High population density, an indirect form of competition, is also associated
with reduced pro-social behavior and increased anti-social behavior.”
[Mealey, op. cit.]
The conclusion is that the capitalistic way of life associated in the United
States with “democracy,” has optimized the survival of psychopaths with the
consequence that it is an adaptive “life strategy” that is extremely
successful in U.S. society, and thus has increased in the population in
genetic terms as well as acting as an attractor to psychopathic individuals
in other countries for quite some time.
The fact is, America is probably
flooded with psychopaths and Skirtoids, as Lobaczewski mentions.
more, as a consequence of a society that is adaptive for psychopathy, many
individuals who are NOT genetic psychopaths have similarly adapted, becoming
“effective” psychopaths, or “characteropaths” in the ways Lobaczewski has
“Of course, because they are not intellectually handicapped, these
individuals [psychopaths] will progress normally in terms of cognitive
development and will acquire a theory of mind. Their theories, however, will
be formulated purely in instrumental terms [what can claiming this or that
GET for me?], without access to the empathic understanding that most of us
rely on so much of the time.
They may become excellent predictors of others’ behavior, unhandicapped by
the ‘intrusiveness’ of emotion, acting, as do professional gamblers, solely
on nomothetic laws and actuarial data rather than on hunches and feelings.
In determining how to ‘play’ in the social encounters of everyday life, they
will use a pure cost-benefit approach based on immediate personal outcomes,
with no ‘accounting’ for the emotional reactions of the others with whom
they are dealing.
Without any real love to ‘commit’ them to cooperation, without any anxiety
to prevent fear of ‘defection’, without guilt to inspire repentance, they
are free to continually play for the short-term benefit.
At the same time, because
changes in gene frequencies in the population
would not be able to keep pace with the fast-changing parameters of social
interactions, an additional fluctuating proportion of sociopathy should
result because, in a society of [psychopathy], the environmental
circumstances make an antisocial strategy of life more profitable than a
[Mealey, op. cit.]
In other words, in a world of psychopaths, those who are not genetic
psychopaths, are induced to behave like psychopaths to survive. When the
rules are set up to make a society “adaptive” to psychopathy, it makes
sociopaths of everyone.
What makes the psychopath so frightening and dangerous is that he or she
wears a completely convincing “Mask of Sanity”. This may at first make such
a person utterly persuasive and compellingly healthy, according to
Harvey Cleckley. Cleckley was first to describe the key
symptoms of the disorder.
In general, the successful psychopath “computes” how much they can get away
with in a cost-benefit ratio of the alternatives. Among the factors that
they consider as most important are money, power, and gratification of
They are not motivated by such social reinforcement as
praise or future benefits or the well-being of others - even including those
one would suspect them to care about, such as their own families. Studies
have been done that show locking up a psychopath has absolutely no effect on
them in terms of modifying their life strategies. In fact, it is shown to
make them worse.
Effectively, when locked up, psychopaths just simply learn
how to be better psychopaths.
The psychopath is obsessed with control even if they give the impression of
being helpless. Their pretense to emotional sensitivity is really part of
their control function: The higher the level of belief in the psychopath
that can be induced in their victim through their dramas, the more “control”
the psychopath believes they have. And in fact, this is true.
They do have
control when others believe their lies. Sadly, the degree of belief, the
degree of “submission” to this control via false representation, generally
produces so much pain when the truth is glimpsed that the victim would
prefer to continue in the lie than face the fact that they have been duped.
The psychopath counts on this. It is part of their “actuarial calculations”.
It gives them a feeling of power.
The past behavior of a society will be used by the psychopath (or ponerological network) to predict the future behavior of that society. Like
an individual player, a society will have a certain probability of detecting
deception and a more or less accurate memory of who has cheated them in the
past. The society will also have a developed, or not developed, proclivity
to retaliate against a liar and cheater.
Since the psychopath is using an
actuarial approach to assess the costs and benefits of different behaviors,
(just how much can he get away with), it is the actual past behavior of the
society which will go into his calculations rather than any risk assessments
based on any “fears or anxieties” of being caught and punished that empathic
people would feel in anticipation of doing something illegal.
Thus, in order to reduce psychopathic behavior in society and in government,
a society must establish and enforce a reputation for high rates of
detection of deception and identification of liars, and a willingness to
retaliate. In other words, it must establish a successful strategy of
Since the psychopath is particularly unable to make decisions based on
future consequences, only able to focus attention on immediate gratification
- short-term goals - it is possible that such individuals can be dealt with
by establishing a history of dealing out swift social retaliation. That is,
identifying and punishing liars and cheaters must be both immediate and
flawlessly consistent, thus predictable in it’s occurrence.
And here we come to the issue concerning real-world human social
interactions on a large scale: reducing psychopathy in our leaders depends
upon expanding society’s collective memory of individual players’ past
behavior. Those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat it.
Any reasonable scan of the news will reveal that lies and cheating are not
“covered up” as thoroughly as American apologists would like to think.
Even the less well-informed Americans have some idea that there was
certainly something fishy about the investigation into the assassination of
JFK. In recent years, the man in charge of the Warren Commission, Gerald
Ford, also a former President, admitted to “cheating” on the report when he
admitted to changing the placement of one of the bullet wounds in the final
Then, there was Watergate followed by the Iran-Contra affair, not to mention
“Monica-gate”. Those seem almost naïve compared to the lies of the current
people in power. The lies of
the Bush gang, from stolen elections, to
9/11 attacks, and through the infamous weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,
have taken the art of lying to heights that would impress Hitler himself.
And here we are just hitting some highlights, most familiar to all
What consequences did the cheaters of society suffer?
None to speak of. In fact, in nearly every case, they were rewarded
handsomely with those things of value to the psychopath: money and material
goods. If anyone thinks they were shamed by public exposure, think again!
But what is of crucial interest here is the fact that the American people
have simply not responded to the revelations of lies in government with any
outrage that could be considered more than token. At the present time, there
isn’t even “token outrage”.
Don’t you find that odd?
But we have already noted the reason: the American way of life has optimized
the survival of psychopathy and in a world of psychopaths, those who are not
genetic psychopaths, are induced to behave like psychopaths simply to
When the rules are set up to make a society “adaptive” to psychopathy, it makes sociopaths of everyone. As a consequence, a very large
number of Americans are effective sociopaths. (Here we use “sociopath” as a
designation of those individuals who are not genetic psychopaths.)
And so, we have George Bush and the Fourth Reich calculating how much they
can get away with by looking at the history of the reactions of the American
people to cheating.
There aren’t any because the system is adaptive to psychopathy. In other
words, Americans support Bush and his agenda because most of them are
effectively like him.
But that is not because they are all born that way. It
is because psychopathy is required to survive in the competitive, capitalist
As a society gets larger and more competitive, individuals become more
anonymous and more Machiavellian. Social stratification and segregation
leads to feelings of inferiority, pessimism and depression among the
have-nots, promoting the use of “cheating strategies” in life that then make
the environment more adaptive for psychopathy in general because those who
are suffering will respond positively to any sign of change, even if they
don’t realize that the change is being proposed by those who will actually
make their lives worse.
Psychopathic behavior among non-genetic psychopaths could be viewed as a
functional method of obtaining desirable resources, increasing an
individual’s status in a local group, and even a means of providing
stimulation that socially and financially successful people find in
acceptable physical and intellectual challenges.
In America, a great many households are affected by the fact that work,
divorce, or both, have removed one or both parents from interaction with
their children for much of the day. This is a consequence of Capitalistic
When the parents are absent, or even when one is present but not in
possession of sufficient knowledge or information, children are left to the
mercies of their peers, a culture shaped by the media. Armed with joysticks
and TV remotes, children are guided from South Park and Jerry Springer to
Mortal Kombat on Nintendo. Normal kids become desensitized to violence.
More-susceptible kids - children with a genetic inheritance of
are pushed toward a dangerous mental precipice. Meanwhile, the government is
regularly passing laws, on the demand of parents and the psychological
community, designed to avoid imposing consequences on junior’s violent
As for media violence, few researchers continue to try to dispute that
bloodshed on TV and in the movies has an effect on the kids who witness it.
Added to the mix now are video games structured around models of hunting and
killing. Engaged by graphics, children learn to associate spurts of “blood”
with the primal gratification of scoring a “win”.
Again, economics - capitalism disguised as “democracy” - controls the
The fact is, it is almost a mechanical system that operates based on the
psychological nature of human beings, most of whom like to live in denial or
need to live in denial to please their parents, their peers, their religious
leaders, and their political leaders. All they want to do is have some
relaxation to enjoy the “American Dream.”
After all, “if ignorance is bliss, it's folly to be wise”. This is most especially true when we consider the
survival instinct of the ego. If the official culture - created by
psychopaths - says that there is no "man behind the curtain", working
through the inculcated belief systems, there is little possibility that most
people will be able to see the source of the ponerological phenomena in our
all of the foregoing information now in relation to the 9/11
attacks and the fact that so many Americans find it almost impossible to
believe that their government officials would wantonly sacrifice the lives
of its citizens to further their personal agendas. More importantly,
consider the fact that your government knows how you think only too well.
fact, they have CREATED your thinking processes!