Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Antisocial Personality in History

"It was wholly in keeping with this retreat from the game of politics that he increasingly lapsed, in terminology and in the tenor of his statements, back into the plane of irrationality. ...Strictly speaking, he never again returned to politics." --the late German Historian Joachim Fest, from his book "Hitler", pgs. 610-611. 1973. Translation, Harcourt, Inc., 1974.

[6] Let them now therefore be punished as their crime requires, and do not, while you condemn the aristocracy, absolve the people.
--Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War, book 3, chapter 39, section 6.

Washington D.C.
--In the first piece I did on Bush's core nature, I noted that the antisocial personality-type has a disregard for the lives and safety of others.

New developments in the war in Iraq bring-to-light another aspect: his absolute rejection of politics and compromise, abetted by the Republican and Democratic Party's incumbents serving in the legislature. This seems to be suddenly rearing-its-head to many observers, yet it has been at the core of his--and this political era's--personality and approach. There is an unfortunate parallel here: Hitler and Nazi Germany again, and the misconceptions surrounding the causes and actions during that period of European history.
The reality is far different than the public perception of that era, often startlingly so.

After the Fall of 1938 it was clear that most of the German people didn't want a wider war. The Prussian officer class feared that a world war was coming, and made several desperate attempts to curtail Hitler's push (too late at that point without the resolve to assassinate him).

Remember: Hitler was not elected. This is a myth, and Kurt Vonnegut and many others have been mistaken on this point since the end of WWII. Hitler was beaten by Hindenburg in the 1932 Presidential elections, and the machinations surrounding his rise to power are complicated. The reality is that Hitler was essentially appointed Chancellor by President Paul von Hindenberg.

The Nazis demanded that Adolf Schickelgruber (sounds pretty Aryan) be installed as Chancellor of Germany with a number of Nazis entering the Cabinet. Hindenburg, Von Papen, and several other State conservatives allowed it for social peace in the streets and to keep the German Communist Party from making further advances politically. They did it to use Hitler and NSDAP as a bulwark against a healthy domestic Left. In a period of such social chaos, Hitler's pathologies weren't immediately apparent. But it is interesting to note that the antisocial personality type is easily diagnosed today in what are more domestically "peaceful" conditions:

The most effectively-diagnosed personality disorder is the antisocial personality. The outstanding traits of this disturbance are an inability to feel love, empathy, or loyalty towards other people and a lack of guilt or remorse for one's actions. Due to the lack of conscience that characterizes it, the condition that is currently known as antisocial personality disorder was labeled moral insanity in the nineteenth century. (Gale Encyclopedia of Psychology, 2nd ed. Gale Group, 2001.)
This describes Hitler well from all of the accounts of his behavior behind-the-scenes, and is reflected in George W. Bush's public demeanor, policy decisions, and from his language in speeches (we don't know much about the private-sphere...yet).

Few want to admit it, but the majority in a society can become mad--but what of a significant minority that's capable of society-wide destruction? This is always possible in any developed nation, and at all times. We know this from accounts from the Middle Ages (the witch hunts), cults, satanic panics, psychiatric cults, abduction phenomena, and periods of political and cultural "demonism" like the Cold War's Red Scare.

In late-1938, the military-columns that paraded through Berlin headed towards Czechoslovakia were met with stunned silence and apathy by the populace. Hitler stood angrily at his balcony--nobody wanted what he wanted, there were no crowds, and the majority of Germans wanted nothing of his war-aims. If you thought everyone in Germany was behind Hitler, you were wrong. Scores-of-innocents died under the Allied aerial-bombing.

The German
public had deep misgivings about the Nazi regime as early as 1935, after the "Night of Long Knives." This is rarely reported in the accepted history. After the autumn of 1938, Hitler gave fewer-and-fewer speeches and appearances before the public. Overall, the German people didn't adore him anymore and they feared his drive towards war. By 1944, he wasn't seen in public, and even rarely gave his famed radio addresses. Gauleiter Josef Goebbels did most of the public-speaking for the Nazi centre towards the end.

You can see a similarity here with the Bush administration--the more-reluctant the public has become, the deeper the President and his administration digs-in, illustrating no regard for the safety of the troops and the Iraqi people. They have deliberately cut-themselves-off from the American public physically, and whomever comes after them isn't likely to be very different.

This withdrawl is a
general aspect of personality disorders: a stiffness and an unwillingness to change under changing circumstances, and n inflexibility and ossification of a personality. Granted, with the revelations of secret CIA prisons and illegal rendition (kidnapping, then torture), this should be no surprise, but expect future revelations that are considerably worse in their depravity. Where does this all come from? There is no consensus on the causes of antisocial personality disorder (APD), however:
The cause of this disorder is unknown, but biological or genetic factors may play a role. The incidence of antisocial personality is higher in people who have an antisocial biological parents. Although the diagnosis is limited to those over 18 years of age, there is usually a history of similar behaviors before age 15, such as repetitive lying, truancy, delinquency, and substance abuse. This disorder tends to occur more often in men and in people whose predominant role model had antisocial features. (
In Hitler's, Stalin's, and George W. Bush's case, their "predominant role model" was their abusive father. Ponder this relationship and how very publicly it has played-out. It's known that Stalin's father beat him and was emotionally-abusive, and there is evidence that Hitler's father was this way too.

Both Hitler and Stalin's mothers were the reverse of the fathers: loving and doting, while the father was distant and rejected them.

While we don't know the whole story
regarding the Bush clan's culture, there are signs that George W. Bush has been repeatedly rejected by Sr. It's also not difficult to fathom that George H. W. Bush is a pathological-liar and a criminal with a tendency towards manipulation and deceit. Whether he has been physically-abusive to his children is unknown. Nonetheless, Bush Sr. ran the CIA, after all (often wearing-disguises at Langley so nobody knew what he was doing, even close associates and allies). He was also one of the masterminds behind Iran-Contra, and showed a deep-tendency towards sadism. The apple doesn't fall very far from the family tree here.

Bush Sr. has lied about his entire life, as well as the history of his family and their connections to the Nazi regime. Pathology is interconnected, and communicable, in the opinion of this author. A recent disclosure has revealed that he has had connections with the CIA beginning in 1953--an assertion he has denied for decades, and is still-denying with the release of key-documents this-week that prove otherwise. His recent breakdown at a speech might mean a fear of disclosure of the family-illness, and potential criminal penalties. Impeachment--it should be remembered--bars further-charges against an elected office-holder in our Constitution.

Yet, truth is always stranger than fiction and the "conventional wisdom." It appears that at least ten GOP senators are going to vote against further-escalation of the war, possibly more. This is becoming precipitously-close to the 2/3's majority in both the House and the Senate it will take to override a veto from the President. [Ed., 09.13.2008-Yet they ended up supporting even more funds for the wars in the Middle East and the so-called "surge."] What if he still commits the troops? He's up-for-grabs. [Ed. Or not!] Like Hitler on the eve of WWII, he's pushing it to where we will have to go as far as to unseat him. This fits the antisocial personality type, because many of them crave excitement and fear boredom or banality.

Hitler played this poker game with the OKW (the Military Command of the Wehrmacht), and for a brief-moment, they plotted a coup against him as some of them had done years earlier. It was the only option Hitler had left them, and he did it consciously as a matter of brinksmanship. The same applies to the Bush II administration. His advisers did their homework on how to bum rush the Constitution. Our option is massive civil disobedience and nonviolent non-compliance by the military and political-class, as well as those in all of the Federal bureaus (the bureaucracy). We have had a Constitutional crisis since 2000, but Americans love putting things off.

The current condition of our nation, our liberties, and on the ground in Iraq, are the cost of this inaction and lack of resolve and principles. We are all to blame, but we need to look at all those who somehow still support George W. Bush--they could very-well be sick. We might want to have our politicians tested as part of their qualifications for office.

Our Constitution should be amended so that it would disqualify anyone who tested-positive for psychopathology from holding public office. 3% of all men, and 1% of all women in America are antisocial personality types. And now we know why there are rich people...

Radically Revised, 09.13.2008

The Constitution of the United States of America (I know, it's been since High School):