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88 of 115 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Psychopathy does not amount to wisdom - ever, November 12, 2012
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This review is from: The Wisdom of Psychopaths (Kindle Edition)
Unfortunate title: psychopaths act by default. Wisdom,however, is acquired through personal and often costly life experience.
The book seems to glorify psychopaths when there is nothing in their actions that any sane person would strive for, except for some utilitarian end, which is likely to be costly for others.  Even if the 'normal' person out there tried to follow the socalled 'wisdom of psychopaths", they would come up against the wall of their superego. The book contains some interesting facts but falters when the author tries to convert the last section into some soft help guide in how to become a psychopath.  It would probably require shlepping an unwieldy magnet around to eliminate the brain's moral compass. It would take effort & create cognitive and emotional dissonance in the ordinary person! Ludicrous proposition! What is second nature for the psychopath would take conscious effort for us. As the book confirms, there are enough psychopaths in the corporate world and elsewhere. Why create more?
What matters is intent: I cannot see any similarity between the garden variety psychopath and a guru meditating or achieving enlightenment even if their MRIs happen to show similarities.
The author's apparent omission in distinguishing between psychopaths & sociopaths is significant.
This book is interesting but because of its hype not a text to be taken as gospel for serious scholarship on the topic. Reads like an adapted doctoral thesis.  Disappointing.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 15, 2012 10:56:19 AM PST
Well said.

Posted on Dec 27, 2012 11:58:06 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 29, 2012 8:07:46 AM PST
I second what Michael P. Maslanka wrote.
Kevin Dutton is trying to be pollyannish and promote psychopathic behaviour, when in fact nothing is good about it. In regards to the health field, I've encountered/been made aware of many more mental health providers who were psychopaths and who were either subsequently convicted and jailed for breaking state and federal laws and/or their license revoked by their governing board or agencies. Less so for surgeons. These mental health providers are even more sinister and malicious because they've studied what society accepts as normal behaviour, and they are good in hiding behind this "normal facade" to escape detection while simultaneously abusing, controlling, and damaging their vulnerable patients/clients and society at large in terms of health care waste, fraud, and abuse. Eventually, many of these providers are outed, but not after they've done a lot of damage; a lot more are able to slither under the radar screen undetected. In any case, the take home points are that (1) psychopaths exist in the mental health providers field--it's a psychopath magnet--a lot more psychopaths there than what Dutton would have you believe otherwise, and that patients/clients need to be sensitized to this fact and that governing bodies should screen, regulate, and monitor the mental health providers and the mental health field more in order to protect the public, (2) psychopaths ought not to be encouraged, glorified, and promoted, this is in contrast to what Hollywood and the media do now. Hollywood is a major enabler and promoter for psychopathic behaviour, (3) if a mental health provider openly admits to or casually hints at having psychopathic tendencies or desires, RUN AWAY from that provider as quickly as possible and count your lucky stars: that type of psychopathic mental health provider is actually the more honest kind: he or she is issuing a warning and telegraphing his/her intent, analogous to what a rattlesnake does. Unfortunately, there are many more psychopathic mental health providers out there who are silent, stealthy predators, who give no warnings at all, and they cause the most damage.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 15, 2013 11:52:31 AM PST
While I am actually in agreement with most of your comments, point #3 seems to imply that mental health providers are either openly psychopathic and dangerous, or silent predators who are even more dangerous. Not much of a distinction...

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 17, 2013 11:14:26 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 18, 2013 6:19:17 AM PST
The ones who are openly psychopathic usually get caught by the US DOJ or other authorities and/or governing bodies, quickly: these bad guys or gals are effectively put out of circulation, hopefully, before they can do any real damage. The more cunning, brilliant ones are able to escape detection and continue to circulate, and even Eric Holder has a hard time getting the goods on them. But Holder, sooner or later, gets the bad guy or gal. To all those psychopaths out there who think they can fool, out fox and cheat Uncle Sam out of trillions of dollars, beware! Uncle Sam will never rest until you are caught, tried, and convicted; and he will prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law, and then some....especially now that Uncle Sam is broke and hurting for cash. Obama is making primary care doctors report to Uncle Sam patients who own guns. He should also widen the net and draw up an Executive Order mandating that all primary care doctors/providers report all suspected psychopaths and/or psycopathic activity to Uncle Sam, and there should be a national psychopath data base. Obama can even have call-in places, toll free hotlines, where ordinary citizens can anonymously report a suspected psychopath to the feds. Children of psychopaths should also be encouraged to report their psychopathic parents to the feds; and coversely, parents with psychopathic children should be encouraged to report their children to the feds. There should be more public service announcements warning the public about psychopaths and what to do about them. Obama, in his second term as president, can then wage a war not only on guns but on psychopaths.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 22, 2013 1:42:34 PM PST
Echo says:
What I want to know is this: does the book enable people to get better at spotting psychopaths?
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