As I ponder the content of various media news outlets, I’m struck by how many people I note who display more than a few traits associated with psychopaths, sociopaths, egoists, and egotists. As a former case officer who had to assess and manipulate all personality types, I see these traits not only in the people who are making the news, but in those who ostensibly report the news. Now, the difference between an egoist and an egotist is this: The former believes that the world turns around him, and that the things he does somehow affect the turning of that world. He does not profess superiority, he only believes that he is the center of the universe. An egotist, on the other hand, believes he (or she, for there are more than a few females who display these traits) is superior to everyone else, and therefore should be allowed to dictate what others do. Add to these traits a lack of empathy for others and a disregard for social or civil norms, i.e. laws, and you’re dealing with a sociopath. But the most dangerous of the lot is the psychopath; for while sociopaths disregard social norms and often violate laws, psychopaths plan their schemes and carry them through with a cold, calculated callousness that will scare even the most ardent of horror movie aficionados.
But while I can pretty easily identify these people, those who disturb me the most are the enablers – the sycophants. Without the sycophants to do their bidding, our psychologically dysfunctional politicians and power brokers would be but voices crying in a wilderness of mirrors. So, who is more to blame for leading us into the morass: the P, S, E and E’s, or those who enable them? What do you think?