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scheming daemons

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Applying the Hare Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R) to determine if Trump is a psychopath

The Hare Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R) is used as a diagnostic tool to determine where someone lies on the psychopathy spectrum. There are 20 items in the checklist, which score between 0 and 2 points each. A score of 30+ indicates a psychopath.

http://www.decision-making-confidence.com/hare-psychopathy-checklist.html

(ALL SCORING BELOW IS MY OWN - THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL CLINICAL DIAGNOSIS)

1. GLIB and SUPERFICIAL CHARM - smooth talking, verbally agile, a psychopath is rarely stuck for something to say. They are not in the least bit shy. In fact, they are not afraid to say anything!

(Trump is certainly not shy and isn't afraid to say anything)
Trump score: 2

2. GRANDIOSE SELF-WORTH - they have an opinion on everything, they boast and brag about the things they have done, their skills and abilities. They have enormous egos, plenty of confidence and arrogance and consider themselves superior. One psychopath said that he preferred to hear himself talk, because what he said was more interesting than what other people had to say.

(No person in the U.S. has a higher opinion of self than Trump)
Trump score: 2

3. SEEK STIMULATION or PRONE TO BOREDOM - they like to be doing new and different things, always looking for excitement and entertainment. They take risks in what they do as well as what they say. For example, cult leaders, in a subtle way, may explain to their victims how exactly they are manipulating them. They rarely engage in activities that they find boring, or they don't finish the job.

(Trump is constantly taking risks in what he does and says)
Trump score: 2

4. PATHOLOGICAL LYING - their ability to lie is stunning, even when they know there is a high probability of being caught. Lies can be cunning and sly or unscrupulously manipulative.

(This one is obvious)
Trump score: 2

5. CONNING AND MANIPULATIVENESS - they deceive, cheat, con, bilk, trick or defraud others for personal gain. This is separated from no. 4 to the extent that the subject shows 'callous ruthlessness', that is, a lack of concern or pity for the suffering and feelings of their victims.

(This one is obvious)
Trump score: 2

6. LACK OF REMORSE OR GUILT - despite their words they experience little emotion or concern for the pain and suffering of their victims. They are unfazed, dispassionate, coldhearted, and unempathic. There is often a disdain for the victims, and they may even say the victims deserved it.

(Trump brags about never feeling guilt because he says he has nothing to feel guilty about)
Trump score: 2

7. SHALLOW AFFECT - emotional poverty or very shallow feelings, coldness towards others despite seeming very friendly.

(This one is obvious)
Trump score: 2

8. CALLOUSNESS and LACK OF EMPATHY - a general lack of feelings towards other people. They tend to be heartless, contemptuous, indifferent and tactless.

(Just ask the Kahn family)
Trump score: 2

9. PARASITIC LIFESTYLE - they will intentionally manipulate and exploit others for financial gain. This goes along with poor motivation and little self-discipline and no sense of responsibility in terms of earning their own living.

(This is his entire life)
Trump score: 2

10. POOR BEHAVIORAL CONTROLS - there may be sudden expressions of annoyance, irritability, aggression and verbal abuse. There may be sudden outbursts of anger and temper and they may act hastily.

(His late night tweet fests are evidence of this)
Trump score: 2

11. PROMISCUOUS SEXUAL BEHAVIOR - they may have many brief encounters, many affairs while married, and may be indiscriminate in selecting partners (heterosexual and homosexual relationships) and even maintain several relationships at the same time. There is often a history of attempting to coerce many people into sexual relationships and they may take great pride in discussing their sexual conquests.

(His personal Vietnam was avoiding STDs in the 70s)
Trump score: 2

12. EARLY BEHAVIOR PROBLEMS - there is often a history of antisocial behavior before age 13, including lying, stealing, cheating, vandalism, bullying, truancy, sexual activity, fire-setting, substance abuse, and running away from home. Cruelty to animals or siblings is particularly ominous.

(No evidence of this - though it probably occurred)
Trump score: 0

13. LACK OF REALISTIC, LONG-TERM GOALS - while they talk about big plans, they show an inability or persistent failure to execute long-term goals; then may drift from one place to another lacking any real direction in life.

(In business, I can't say he didn't have long-term goals. In politics, he certainly doesn't have realistic ones)
Trump score: 1

14. IMPULSIVITY - many of their behaviors are not premeditated and seem to be unplanned. They seem unable to resist temptation and urges or to delay gratification. They may not consider the consequences and so they appear reckless, foolhardy and unpredictable.

("unpredictable" is Trump's middle name)
Trump score: 2

15. IRRESPONSIBILITY - they will repeatedly fail to honor commitments or obligations, in school, work, family or social situations. The fail to turn up, don't pay bills, fail to honor contracts etc.

("fail to honor contracts" is Trump's business plan)
Trump score: 2

16. FAILURE TO ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR OWN ACTIONS - it seems like it's never their fault or their responsibility. They have little or no sense of duty or conscientiousness and often deny their responsibility. And in denying, they will even try and manipulate others!

(This one is obvious)
Trump score: 2

17. MANY SHORT-TERM MARITAL RELATIONSHIPS - inability to maintain a long-term relationship because they are inconsistent and unreliable.

(Boom! Obvious)
Trump score: 2

18. JUVENILE DELINQUENCY - behavioral difficulties between the ages of 13-18. Typically behaviors that are crimes or are clearly manipulative, aggressive and callous.

(No evidence of this - probably because dad covered it up)
Trump score: 0

19. REVOCATION OF CONDITION RELEASE - they may have had their probation revoked for technical reasons such as failing to appear, carelessness and so on.

(N/A as far as we know)
Trump score: 0

20. CRIMINAL VERSATILITY - unlike other criminals who may specialize in one area they are often involved in diverse activities, taking great pride at getting away with crimes.

(Most of his crimes are financial fraud. He doesn't diversify)
Trump score: 1
----------------------------------

Total Score: 32

Trump is therefore a certifiable psychopath.
Posted by scheming daemons | Mon Aug 29, 2016, 12:21 AM (6 replies)

Baloney Detection Kit

Carl Sagan, in his brilliant book "The Demon Haunted World", provided a chapter called "The Baloney Detection Kit". Here is how you can sift through arguments to separate the "woo" from the reality :



- Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the facts

- Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.

- Arguments from authority carry little weight (in science there are no "authorities").

- Spin more than one hypothesis - don't simply run with the first idea that caught your fancy.

- Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it's yours.

- Quantify, wherever possible.

- If there is a chain of argument every link in the chain must work.

- "Occam's razor" - if there are two hypothesis that explain the data equally well choose the simpler.

- Ask whether the hypothesis can, at least in principle, be falsified (shown to be false by some unambiguous test). In other words, is is it testable? Can others duplicate the experiment and get the same result?

Additional issues are:

- Conduct control experiments - especially "double blind" experiments where the person taking measurements is not aware of the test and control subjects.

- Check for confounding factors - separate the variables.

Common fallacies of logic and rhetoric:

- Ad hominem - attacking the arguer and not the argument.

- Argument from "authority".

- Argument from adverse consequences (putting pressure on the decision maker by pointing out dire consequences of an "unfavourable" decision).

- Appeal to ignorance (absence of evidence is not evidence of absence).

- Special pleading (typically referring to god's will).

- Begging the question (assuming an answer in the way the question is phrased).

- Observational selection (counting the hits and forgetting the misses).

- Statistics of small numbers (such as drawing conclusions from inadequate sample sizes).

- Misunderstanding the nature of statistics (President Eisenhower expressing astonishment and alarm on discovering that fully half of all Americans have below average intelligence!)

- Inconsistency (e.g. military expenditures based on worst case scenarios but scientific projections on environmental dangers thriftily ignored because they are not "proved").

- Non sequitur - "it does not follow" - the logic falls down.

- Post hoc, ergo propter hoc - "it happened after so it was caused by" - confusion of cause and effect.

- Meaningless question ("what happens when an irresistible force meets an immovable object?).

- Excluded middle - considering only the two extremes in a range of possibilities (making the "other side" look worse than it really is).

- Short-term v. long-term - a subset of excluded middle ("why pursue fundamental science when we have so huge a budget deficit?").

- Slippery slope - a subset of excluded middle - unwarranted extrapolation of the effects (give an inch and they will take a mile).

- Confusion of correlation and causation.

- Straw man - caricaturing (or stereotyping) a position to make it easier to attack..

- Suppressed evidence or half-truths.

- Weasel words - for example, use of euphemisms for war such as "police action" to get around limitations on Presidential powers. "An important art of politicians is to find new names for institutions which under old names have become odious to the public"


The world misses Carl Sagan more than ever.
Posted by scheming daemons | Mon Jan 6, 2014, 08:06 AM (35 replies)
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