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The paradox of killing a psychopath

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posted on Dec, 20 2011 @ 11:41 PM
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This post was inspired by a recent post on Duncan O'Finioans's blog.
duncanofinioan.wordpress.com...
In this blog he quotes an excerpt from his book that describes a mission he was on during which he killed someone who was obviously criminally insane. He uses this excerpt to illustrate the problem of "losing it" in an emotional situation (he almost kills his senior officer).
But what struck me about the post was the concept that of course what you do with someone that evil is kill them, because that stops them.

Society's desire to rid itself of the psychopath

I first learned about the criminally insane from my teacher, in a short course I took on the subject. Later I read the first book he wrote that gets deeply into this issue. In it he warned repeatedly about letting such people roam free in society:



Such people should be taken from the society as rapidly as possible and uniformly institutionalized, for here is the level of the contagion of immorality and the destruction of ethics, here is the fodder which secret police organizations use for their filthy operations.
...
No social order will survive which does not remove these people from its midst.

Later in this book, he mentions the "two answers" for handling such people. The first is therapy.


The other is to dispose of them quietly and without sorrow. Adders are safe bedmates compared to [these] people...

Strong words from a man known to most as a humanitarian. But around that time (late 1951) some attempts had been made on his life. And by the time he wrote this book a few months later, he had become aware of who had ordered those attacks.

One's first reaction to realizing that someone wishes you dead is to kill them first. That seems natural enough.

Understanding psychopathy

I was studying all this in the 1980s, long after the books had been written. So I could jump nearly 15 years ahead in this research (1965) to learn more about this personality:



The only reason the insane were hard to understand is that they are handling situations which no longer exist. The situation probably existed at one time. They think they have to hold their own against a nonexistent enemy to solve a nonexistent problem.


Of course, by this time there were other researchers in the field. And they were more interested in psychopathy as its own subject. Andrew Lobaczewski (Political Ponerology) started his work in the 1950s but was not able to publish it until quite recently. Robert Hare (Snakes in Suits) started his work in the 1960s and began publishing books in the 1970s.

Though some argue that psychopaths are incurable, from this work we at least know how to spot them. And this gives us the opportunity to handle them.

The Paradox

This paradox is not clear to most researchers. For better or worse, it has an esoteric component that most find difficult to swallow.

This has to do with what most people call reincarnation. It is the usual pattern for a being to continue its journey through a long line of bodies. By 1952, my teacher wrote that he was dealing with such memories (in those his students were working with) all the time.

He wrote that the spirit...


...is immortal and is possessed of capabilities well in excess of those hitherto predicted for Man. And the detachment [from the body] accomplishes, in the sober practice of science, the realization of goals envisioned, but questionably, if ever obtained in spiritualism, mysticism and allied fields.

So, what happens when you try to punish an immortal being?
Later he wrote:


The truth is, Man cannot really be trusted with "punishment." With it, he does not really seek discipline, he wreaks injustice.

But why? For most wrong-doers, this is because being punished only gives them another reason to fight back.

But for the psychopath it could go even beyond that.

Let's say a psychopath knew about reincarnation. He would not have the spiritual ability to experience it as a truth, but he could believe in it on some sort of religious basis.

To such a psychopath, what's the preferred outcome of being discovered?
1) Incarcerated for life so that his operation is shut down?
2) Killed on the spot?

The psychopath would be able to get back to his degraded games sooner if he were killed than if he were incarcerated. So he could think: Why not go full bore? Beyond the pain of dying, which the psychopath is already grossly insensitive to, why not seek death when cornered as the quickest way to return to his "work?"

It is also possible - "modern" psychology to the contrary - that the psychopath could be rehabilitated. A long incarceration would give someone the chance to do this.

Thus, if these findings are true, keeping a psychopath alive but detained is a better solution for society than killing him, which actually results in "freeing" him to come back in a new body and start again.

Quite a paradox.




posted on Dec, 20 2011 @ 11:58 PM
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Thanks for the post OP, it really made me think. Good post. Nothing is within reach when we reach for something in which we do not know. So kill him/her or no? Who knows. Maybe one day we can find out. Reincarnation could be quite a beautiful thing if we are the ones that aren't the psychopath. And i'm not speaking from experience (of course) but it would seem that being detained until death would be worst than instant death. I just had a revelation. Cause im normally thinking the contrary just to suffice myself. Thanks again.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 12:08 AM
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reply to post by l_e_cox
 

A fascinating post, and an unusual one. Unusual in the sense that after I reading it I conclude 1) I understand exactly what the author is saying, and 2) I can't possibly be understanding the author correctly.

So, since I'm obviously not following you, allow me to ask for some clarification. One of your main points seems to be:

For most wrong-doers, this is because being punished only gives them another reason to fight back.
Doen't this position require us to give up punishing anyone for anything? Doesn't using force in self-defense give the attacker "another reason to fight back?"

Another of your main points seems to be about the effect of reincarnation. Here it gets very murky for me, indeed. Leave aside for a moment the size of the group of psycopaths who believe in reincarnation, we can assume it's large enough to worry about, are you not leaving out of consideration the question of whether reincarnation is true?

To such a psychopath, what's the preferred outcome of being discovered?
1) Incarcerated for life so that his operation is shut down?
2) Killed on the spot?
If the psycopath prefers being killed, I'm sure that society, and some of the authors you quoted would be pleased to accomodate him.

Other points I'm not clear on. If it is not possible to cure him right now, then by imprisoning him you're building up the hatred you were seeking to avoid, punishing him.

If the psychopath were killed, and if reincarnation were true, doesn't he come back as a baby with a chance to be brought up in surroundings which don't contribute to mental illness?

And doesn't reincarnation involve coming back lower or higher on some scale of life, depending on what you did in your past life? In that case, how would a murdering psychopath return, maybe as a sparrow?

I hope I've conveyed some sense of my confusion. There's a lot of substance in your post, and I'd like to understand it better.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 12:16 AM
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reply to post by l_e_cox
 

I'd thank you for such great food for thought..but wow..You sure know how to make someone's outlook complicated. S/F for the thought provoking post though. Before your thoughts here, my automatic response to evil in human form (criminally insane, for another term) would be to kill them/it as it's located. We're talking about the rare people who truly are beyond rehabilitation and do pose a dire threat to any normal living thing they are around.

Now? You've really made me stop in my tracks with thoughts I had never even pondered before. I DO believe very deeply in reincarnation. It's a cornerstone to my Faith and I believe everyone experiences it. Some remember...most never do, but our souls don't just pop into being one day by magic.
With that in mind... Oh my... The theory posed here adds a level of problem to an already vexing issue.

I suppose lifelong confinement is the best when THIS is added to the mix. They still die eventually and the "it" in their souls still comes back again, but at least the confinement delays the inevitable. I almost started to say I'd wish they could find a way to TRULY kill a person...their essence, I mean. The soul. However...No.. bad bad bad idea with more than a couple seconds thought to that one. Any leaders I can think to name in recorded history could never be trusted with such a capability, even if it could be done. So... Confinement it would be, I guess.

Geeze.. talk about suddenly finding the scene to be a range of very bad options without a single viable one anymore. So much for sleeping soundly with this bouncing through my head.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 12:17 AM
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I have just watched here, on NZ news, about how a little girl was abused and tortured.

I would like her parents to get the death penalty.

Because they have ruined her life - she has nightmares about them. How is that girl ever going to be happy?

I think that people who ruin the life of others deserve the death penalty - because they have taken everything away.

Sorry, I know it is not really up to us to inflict the death penalty on anyone, but I feel so strongly about child abuse.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:37 AM
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Quite the Paradox, isn't it? I agree that incarceration and rehabilitation are better solutions than the death penalty. Especially in the context of reincarnation and our spiritual journeys. But what about the problems that arise from this? Such as allocation of money and resources towards helping those that have destroyed society when realistically there is little chance of redemption? Couldn't this money be better spent on improving the lives of those who obey the law and contribute to society? What about the accessories afforded to inmates at modern correctional facilities such as gym equipment, TV, internet, newspapers and video games? Does that not sound inconsistent with the life they should be living after being found guilty of murder?

The paradox of killing a psychopath is quite a complicated one.
edit on 21/12/2011 by Dark Ghost because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:43 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


Do you suffer from Psychopathy, or do you know any psychopath's/sociopath's?

Incarceration and/or rehabilitation is a waste of time, in my personal opinion neither has any real effect and only serves the purpose of allowing the psychopath to continue about his/her business in an even easier environment.
I use the word easier, considering they have any number of potential victims in the prison system.

Unfortunately I'm probably swaying away from the intended meaning of l_e_cox's post.
edit on 21-12-2011 by Violence because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:44 AM
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I don't think sociopaths really exist.

I mean, isn't believing in a completely evil person, which is what a sociopath essentially is, just as ridiculous as believing in a completely good person? Even Hitler loved his mom, niece, his dogs, etc. And he's considered the worst person ever.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:45 AM
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reply to post by lampsalot
 


Oh, take it from me, sociopath's do exist



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:46 AM
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Originally posted by Violence
reply to post by lampsalot
 


Oh, take it from me, sociopath's do exist


So you don't love your mom? Never felt anything for your siblings, grandparents, dad, best friend? I'm asking because apparently you are a self-described one.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:49 AM
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Originally posted by lampsalot

Originally posted by Violence
reply to post by lampsalot
 


Oh, take it from me, sociopath's do exist


So you don't love your mom? Never felt anything for your siblings, grandparents, dad, best friend? I'm asking because apparently you are a self-described one.


Actually I was diagnosed with anti-social personality disorder. I have no feelings towards either of my parents, I neither speak to, or see either one. Without describing in full detail the 25 years I've been alive, you wouldn't really have an understanding of what a sociopath truly is, unless you've personally come into contact with one.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:51 AM
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Originally posted by Violence

Originally posted by lampsalot

Originally posted by Violence
reply to post by lampsalot
 


Oh, take it from me, sociopath's do exist


So you don't love your mom? Never felt anything for your siblings, grandparents, dad, best friend? I'm asking because apparently you are a self-described one.


Actually I was diagnosed with anti-social personality disorder. I have no feelings towards either of my parents, I neither speak to, or see either one. Without describing in full detail the 25 years I've been alive, you wouldn't really have an understanding of what a sociopath truly is, unless you've personally come into contact with one.


What is a sociopath? I always got the idea that a sociopath was someone who didn't love, or even care about anyone, except possibly themselves, and a psychopath is a sociopath with violent tendencies. Is that right?



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 07:54 AM
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Originally posted by lampsalot

Originally posted by Violence

Originally posted by lampsalot

Originally posted by Violence
reply to post by lampsalot
 


Oh, take it from me, sociopath's do exist


So you don't love your mom? Never felt anything for your siblings, grandparents, dad, best friend? I'm asking because apparently you are a self-described one.


Actually I was diagnosed with anti-social personality disorder. I have no feelings towards either of my parents, I neither speak to, or see either one. Without describing in full detail the 25 years I've been alive, you wouldn't really have an understanding of what a sociopath truly is, unless you've personally come into contact with one.


What is a sociopath? I always got the idea that a sociopath was someone who didn't love, or even care about anyone, except possibly themselves, and a psychopath is a sociopath with violent tendencies. Is that right?


That is a small part of it, yes.

Simple search on Google will explain more. I'll list some more...




failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors as indicated by repeatedly performing acts that are grounds for arrest; deception, as indicated by repeatedly lying, use of aliases, or conning others for personal profit or pleasure; impulsiveness or failure to plan ahead; irritability and aggressiveness, as indicated by repeated physical fights or assaults; reckless disregard for safety of self or others; consistent irresponsibility, as indicated by repeated failure to sustain consistent work behavior or honor financial obligations; lack of remorse, as indicated by being indifferent to or rationalizing having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from another;


I really hate to, but I will link the wikipedia page to make life easier.

wiki
edit on 21-12-2011 by Violence because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:00 AM
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Originally posted by catwhoknowsplusone


I think that people who ruin the life of others deserve the death penalty - because they have taken everything away.

Sorry, I know it is not really up to us to inflict the death penalty on anyone, but I feel so strongly about child abuse.


I find it kind of disturbing that most death penalty supporters seem to base their support off of their love for children. Almost like capital punishment is a kind of honorific sacrifice of abusive adults to commemorate and avenge our child gods.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:04 AM
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reply to post by Violence
 


I don't know any personally but I have studied about Psychopathy/Sociopathy briefly in Psychology.

I see what you are saying. My solution for this would be that those fitting the profile will be banned from all forms of social interaction with other inmates. This takes away the opportunity for them to re-offend using other inmates as their targets. As long as the punishment fits the crime.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:10 AM
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reply to post by Dark Ghost
 


Ah, but herein lies the problem. a sociopath/psychopath can be ultra charming, manipulative and circumvent such profiling. Let's use the example of them murdering someone, that doesn't necessarily make you a psychopath/sociopath, anyone can kill, but not everyone can charm and lie their way around daily life with ultimate ease.

Let's use the Australian prison system for example. Sentences (from first hand experience) do not fit the crime in any way whatsoever, at least in my case and others I know of. Neither the private or government prisons care if someone is a psychopath, or sociopath and they allow them to walk around freely committing any number of crimes inside prison walls, to any number of unsuspecting victims. The next 2 steps of punishment for diagnosed mental illness, or just general misbehaving is being sent to solitary for a predetermined amount of time, or being sent to a higher security rating prison.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 08:22 AM
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reply to post by Violence
 


Another good point you raise. Unfortunately, there is never going to be a system that is fail-proof for all. That just isn't possible considering the diversity of inmates. Ensuring the punishment does fit the crime is a crucial element that needs to be addressed far better than it currently is, though.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 12:17 PM
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There are probably some steps in between death and reincarnation. Drawing from common things from NDEs there is a meeting with god, and a life review. I could see god being a master therapist. And then there is always the possibility for them to forget before they take their next form.



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 09:53 PM
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Originally posted by lampsalot
I don't think sociopaths really exist.

I mean, isn't believing in a completely evil person, which is what a sociopath essentially is, just as ridiculous as believing in a completely good person? Even Hitler loved his mom, niece, his dogs, etc. And he's considered the worst person ever.

I can only add to this that they absolutely do exist. True evil does exist in the form of men. It's rare...thankfully (I think). I envy you that you've never seen anything in life to convince you of the truth of this.

I'm dead serious, by the way. Not a shred of sarcasm out of me here. I might be a bit happier person myself if I hadn't seen some of what I had earlier in life...but Evil absolutely does walk on two legs in the world around us..and once you HAVE seen it in person, you'll never be the same.

What bothers me most about this thread? It had never even crossed my mind that naturally, THOSE souls reincarnate just like the rest of us.


edit on 21-12-2011 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 21 2011 @ 10:01 PM
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reply to post by l_e_cox
 


Hmm, a very interesting proof, but hard to discuss objectively when we can't yet prove whether or not reincarnation exists. I don't feel I could lend much here yet as far as my own words go, but I do have something to offer to you OP.

Check out a movie called "Frenemies" with Callum Blue in it. It's a strange artsy flick that is entertaining while still delivering a message. I thought I had that message pretty well figured out until I read your post.



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