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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Nice guys, average guys, and sociopaths (XV)

SITUATION: A guy has been lying to his roommates about the rent for their apartment, telling them that it was higher than it was, and has been pocketing the difference. He has just been caught; his roommates are outraged. How does he react?

Nice guy: Wouldn’t do this in the first place.

Average guy: Probably wouldn’t do this in the first place, but if he did, and were caught, would feel shame and embarrassment. Might try to half-heartedly justify it on the basis of it being his lease.

Sociopath: Would be completely unembarrassed, and would shrug it off by saying, as if his roommates are crazy for getting angry in the first place, “Hey man, it’s a dog eat dog world out there. You don’t expect me not to try to make a little profit, do you?”

SITUATION: Two buddies stumble across $4000 in cash in a brown paper bag on a park bench. What do they do?

Nice guy: Wants to find the rightful owner and return the money.

Average guy: Suggests splitting the money evenly, and swears his buddy to secrecy.

Sociopath: He counts the money himself, tells his buddy it totals $3000, then suggests he should keep $2000 to his buddy's $1000 because he's the one who suggested going to the park in the first place. He threatens to kill his buddy if he ever blabs about their find.

SITUATION: Two cops bust a major drug dealer, find $200,000 on a table in his house.

Nice guy: Wants to turn the money in as evidence.

Average guy: Although inclined to be honest, is sorely tempted. Potentially swayed either way by his partner.

Sociopath: Tells his partner, "Hey, that money is ours. Far as I'm concerned, we earned it. We're the ones who busted this scumbag. Hey, you put your life on the line for sixty grand a year so you can watch some stockbroker drive around in his seventy grand BMW? Fuck that. Hey, do it for your kids. Don't tell me they don't deserve better."


Anonymous said...


Thanks for putting a smile on my face this morning !

Mad Dog

John Craig said...

Mad Dog --
Thank you, but the post wasn't really supposed to make you smile. It was supposed to evoke wry recognition.

Pete said...

"Hey, do it for your kids."
That's what most politicians say every time they shaft the public. They're doing it for the children.
Always hiding behind the children.

John Craig said...

Pete --
The rate of sociopathy in the general population is supposed to be around 3%; among politicians it is way, way higher (25%?).