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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Sociopath alert: Hillary Clinton

For a long time, I thought Hillary Clinton a normal person who had been corrupted by her proximity to her sociopathic husband and by having been given so much power. (Power does have a corrupting influence.)

She didn't seem to have a full complement of sociopathic traits. She lacks the glib salesman's charm that characterizes so many sociopaths. When Barack Obama characterized her in 2008 as being "likable enough," that was in fact being generous. Her strident, grating personality does not cast a spell.

It also seemed less likely that Hillary was a sociopath simply because she was married to one. Sociopaths are rarely drawn to each other as spouses: they usually prefer someone they can dominate and manipulate, not an "equal." But, that marriage appears more and more to be a rare case of two partners in crime.

And ever since Hillary ran for Senator in 2000, she has more or less escaped Bill's shadow. This has put her own personal qualities in high relief. And it's hard to escape the conclusion that she, too, is a sociopath.

Dishonesty is one of the main hallmarks of sociopathy.

Hillary has lied, in some way, about practically every aspect of her life that has come to public notice. The bribe she got via the cattle futures trading (which, in all fairness was for her husband, and merely funneled through her) was something she claimed she achieved through having studied the Wall Street Journal. (If she was so good at it, why would this famously money hungry woman suddenly quit trading?) She lied about Travelgate when she claimed that the longtime White House employees had committed embezzlement, which was not true. (Hillary wanted to install her friends in the job.)

Hillary has lied about Benghazi (claiming it was a spontaneous reaction to an internet video), her email setup (which she initially claimed was in accordance with all regulations), and countless other episodes. But these are the types of lies which non sociopaths might utter, if their backs were against the wall and their political survival were dependent on it.

What's far more telling, personality-wise, is that Hillary lies even when she doesn't have to. All of the small lies she's told about her own life have had no impact on policy. But while they seem to matter little, they do speak volumes about Hillary.

Hillary has claimed that she was named after Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to climb Mt. Everest. But she was born in 1947, six years before that event, when Edmund was only an obscure beekeeper in New Zealand.

Hillary has claimed that all four of her grandparents were immigrants. Only one of them was.

Hillary has said that she tried to join the Marines in 1975, but was turned down. While this claim hasn't been definitively debunked, it seems highly, highly unlikely.

Hillary has famously claimed that as Secretary of State, she once landed in Bosnia under sniper fire, and had to run for cover on the tarmac. No such thing occurred. Here is a CBS clip debunking Hillary's account, with footage of her actual arrival.

(These last two lies are a little reminiscent of a male sociopath who claims to have been a Navy SEAL, or to have worked for the CIA, when he hasn't. These types of lies are generally referred to as "stolen valor.")

Hillary has also famously claimed to have been "dead broke" when she left the White House in 2001.

These are all "sport lies," a specialty of sociopaths, who will use any occasion to falsely burnish their resume.

Hillary's lying predates her political career. There are conflicting reports about whether she was technically fired from her job as a young 27-year-old lawyer on the Watergate Committee for her unethical behavior. But her boss at the time, lifelong Democrat Jerry Zeifman, has been quite public about his opinion of her dishonesty.

Another characteristic of sociopaths is that when they lie, they do so straightforwardly, with no hint of shame or embarrassment. Can you think of just one occasion when Hillary came across sheepish, rather than brassy?

Some sociopaths will even get angry when rightfully accused, just the way non sociopaths do when wrongfully accused. Think of that famous video of Hillary at the Benghazi hearings, angrily crying out, "What difference, at this point, does it make?"

(That is not dissimilar in spirit to the time her husband, wagging his finger angrily at his accuser,  thundered "I did not have sex with that woman!")

Yet another sociopathic hallmark is to think one is fooling others when one is not. A sociopath would lie, then lie again, then deny the previous lies, expecting to be believed every step of the way. Just as Hillary has done with her email scandal.

One revealing sign of character is how one treats people you outrank, whether that's people down the ladder in the organization you work for, or waiters, or delivery people, or taxi drivers. Or, the Arkansas State Troopers assigned to protect you.

Here are a couple of Hillary quotes from people who witnessed her behavior in private:

"F**k off! It's enough that I have to see you shit-kickers every day, I'm not going to talk to you too!! Just do your G*damn job and keep your mouth shut." (From the book "American Evita" by Christopher Anderson, p. 90 - Hillary to her State Trooper bodyguards after one of them greeted her with "Good morning.")

"Stay the f**k back, stay the f**k away from me! Don't come within ten yards of me, or else! Just f***ing do as I say, Okay!!!?" (From the book "Unlimited Access", by Clinton FBI Agent in Charge, Gary Aldrige, p. 139 - Hillary screaming at her Secret Service detail.)

"Where's the miserable c**k sucker?" (From the book "The Truth About Hillary" by Edward Klein, p. 5 - Hillary shouting at a Secret Service officer.)

"If you want to remain on this detail, get your f***ing ass over here and grab those bags!" (From the book "The First Partner" p. 259 - Hillary to a Secret Service Agent who was reluctant to carry her luggage because he wanted to keep his hands free in case of an incident.)

The men assigned to protect Hillary once she was in the White House all considered it hardship duty, according to Ronald Kessler, author of First Family Detail. Excerpts from the NY Post article on that book:

 “Hillary was very rude to agents, and she didn’t appear to like law enforcement or the military,” former Secret Service agent Lloyd Bulman recalls. “She wouldn’t go over and meet military people or police officers, as most protectees do. She was just really rude to almost everybody. She’d act like she didn’t want you around, like you were beneath her."

Former agent Jeff Crane says, “Hillary would cuss at Secret Service drivers for going over bumps.” Another former member of her detail recollects, “Hillary never talked to us . . . Most all members of first families would talk to us and smile. She never did that.”

Within the White House, Hillary had a “standing rule that no one spoke to her when she was going from one location to another,” says former FBI agent Coy Copeland. “In fact, anyone who would see her coming would just step into the first available office.”

Sociopaths always punch down, not up. And spewing bile at people whose job it is to protect and help you is a particularly low form of punching down.

Vindictiveness and spitefulness are two other sociopathic traits.

White House usher Christopher B. Emery unwisely called back Barbara Bush after she phoned him for computer troubleshooting. Emery helped the former first lady twice. Consequently, Kessler reports, Hillary sacked him. The father of four stayed jobless for a year.

Being two-faced is another sociopathic trait: 

As Kessler wrote, “When in public, Hillary smiles and acts graciously. As soon as the cameras are gone, her angry personality, nastiness, and imperiousness become evident.”

Hillary's corruption is probably best illustrated by the way she made herself available as Secretary of State to donors to the Clinton Foundation, which basically serves as a slush fund for the Clinton lifestyle. The list of corrupt transactions are detailed here, and have been extensively cited elsewhere as well.

We all like money. But once you've known a sociopath or two, you realize that sociopaths worship mammon in a way that normal people do not. They lust after money with an intensity that is hard to imagine. And they will do anything to acquire more of it. Anything. Even selling out their own country, in acts that are essentially treasonous.

Hillary's cupidity extended to whom she would take money from. Hillary lambastes any political opponent who isn't fully onboard with the LGBTQ agenda, or the feminist platform. Yet she accepts money via her foundation from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Morocco, Kuwait, Brunei, and Oman, all of which put severe restrictions on women and persecute gays.

The love of money fits with Hillary's writing off of Bill's used underwear for four dollars (and long johns for twelve dollars) each while First Lady of Arkansas. It fits with taking money for pro-business speeches from Goldman Sachs, the quintessential Wall Street firm, even though she claims to stand against big money. (Did Goldman really think her speeches were worth a quarter  million dollars to hear, or might they have been paying for future access?)

Hypocrisy, another hallmark of sociopathy, is closely related to the inability to feel guilt, or shame. (It's a lot easier to be hypocritical when you're immune to embarrassment.)

In September of 2015, Hillary said, "To every survivor of sexual assault...You have the right to be heard. You have the right to be believed. We're with you."

Contrast that to Hillary's behavior with Juanita Broaddrick, right after Bill Clinton had allegedly raped her. According to Broaddrick:

"She came directly to me as soon as she hit the door. I had been there only a few minutes, I only wanted to make an appearance and leave. She caught me and took my hand and said: “I am so happy to meet you. I want you to know that we appreciate everything you do for Bill.” I started to turn away and she held onto my hand and reiterated her phrase — looking less friendly and repeated her statement — “Everything you do for Bill.” I said nothing. She wasn’t letting me get away until she made her point. She talked low, the smile faded on the second thank you. I just released her hand from mine and left the gathering."
In 2003, in an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity, Broaddrick repeated the story, adding: “I could have passed out at that moment. . . . Cold chills went up my spine. That’s the first time I became afraid of that woman.”

Or contrast Hillary's statement to the way she treated Monica Lewinsky and Lewinsky had claimed an affair with Bill: Hillary called her a "narcissistic loony tune."

As Political Insider put it:

During Clinton’s campaigns, Hillary Clinton ran her own “war room” against the so-called “Bimbo Eruptions”… The name given to the endless list of women who were harassed, assaulted, and even raped by Bill Clinton. Hillary’s job was to discredit, smear, and ruin the lives of these women who happened to speak out about her husband’s shameful treatment of women.

Discrediting, smearing, and ruining lives. No one is better at these things than a sociopath. And running a war room to quell "bimbo eruptions" hardly fits with a statement that all rape victims "have the right to be heard" and "the right to be believed."

When a politician flip-flops, it's usually viewed as evidence that he can't be trusted, and that he's the type who will say whatever it takes to be elected. (Telling people what they want to hear also happens to be a characteristic of sociopaths.)

Hillary always has one finger up to the wind. She was against gay marriage, and then she was for it. She fervently supported the Trans Pacific Partnership, and then she was against it. She was against illegal immigration, and now she supports Obama's controversial executive orders on that. She voted for the War on Iraq, but now says it was a mistake. When she was first Secretary of State, she was all for a "reset" with Russia; now she accuses Trump of cozying up too much with Putin.

The list of Hillary's flip-flops is too long for this post; but they are all indicative of someone who will say anything to gain power. And a sociopath's lust for power is similar to their lust for money.

Sociopaths are also all about secretiveness and subterfuge. Hillary certainly showed these traits when she was in charge of that ill-fated attempt to reform the nation's health care system in 1993. And really, that is what her alternate email system was all about in the first place: keeping her Clinton Foundation transactions hidden from public view.

More recently, she's been keeping her health status a secret.

It's hard to escape the conclusion that Hillary has kept her love life a big secret, too. A number of Bill's former lovers have said that he told them that Hillary had been with a number of women. (And why else would Hillary have appointed the 24-year-old Huma as a "personal advisor" back in 2000 if not to hide her real role?) There's certainly no sin in being a lesbian; and maybe Hillary deserves a pass on this one since she's running for President. But, as always, secrecy rules.

Sociopaths are grandiose: remember all that "two for the price of one" talk? Has there ever been another First Lady in history who saw herself as co-President?

Another sociopathic trait is an inability to love.

According to Sally Miller, one of Bill Clinton's former lovers:

“She had several abortions before she had Chelsea and it was only because Bill convinced her that if they were ever going to move up in politics that they had to have a child because that is what the political analysts had said.”

Another hallmark of sociopathy is lack of self-control. Hillary's explosive temper is a perfect example. Former Secret Service agent Gary Byrne wrote a book about what he saw in the White House during the 1990's. The NY Post reviewed it:

Hillary Clinton has a “Jekyll and Hyde” personality that left White House staffers scared stiff of her explosive — and even physical — outbursts, an ex-Secret Service officer claims in a scathing new tell-all.

Gary Byrne, who was posted outside the Oval Office when Bill Clinton was president, portrays Hillary as too “erratic, uncontrollable and occasionally violent” to become leader of the free world....
The book claims she repeatedly screamed obscenities at her husband, Secret Service personnel and White House staffers — all of whom lived in terror of her next tirade.

Secret Service agents had discussions about the possibility that they would have to protect Bill from his wife’s physical attacks, Byrne writes, and the couple had one “violent encounter” the morning of a key presidential address to the nation.


This behavior shows the complete lack of inhibition characteristic of a sociopath.

Another sociopathic trait is a complete unwillingness to accept blame. Hillary has always been willing to point to a "vast right wing conspiracy" or whatever other scapegoat she can think of to explain away her mistakes. Benghazi was the fault of an obscure internet video. More recently she blamed Colin Powell for her email troubles.

And when an interviewer brings up a sensitive question for her, she will often attempt to laugh it off. (This is a remarkably consistent behavior for her, as you'll see if you look at the linked video.)

Try to imagine Hillary, head in hands, shaking her head, red-faced, ruefully thinking, I really screwed up, and I'm so ashamed.

It's an image that's impossible to evoke.

Often the "Early life" section of a Wikipedia bio will give clues as to how a sociopath became that way. Hillary's doesn't. It describes a fairly normal middle class upbringing in Chicago suburb Park Ridge, in an intact family.

The earliest clue to her emerging character came at Wellesley. Much has been made of the fact that Hillary became the first student in Wellesley history to give a commencement speech, in 1969. Hillary's followed that of US Senator Edward Brooke of Massachusetts, who was the Commencement Speaker, and her speech was critical of the Senator.

Imagine that scene for a moment. A United States Senator gives a speech to your graduating class, and then, while he is sitting on the podium, you, a graduating senior, give a speech critical of him. That takes an incredible amount of nerve -- or maybe gall -- for a 21-year-old. Maybe Hillary's criticisms were on target; maybe they weren't. But what kind of 21-year-old feels comfortable doing something like that?

With Hillary, there's no one big revelation that reveals her character. It's just the constant drumbeat of lies, hypocrisy, greed, entitlement, anger, secretiveness, and shamelessness that make her what she is.

These are not separate, unrelated qualities. It's the same shamelessness that informed her lying about her emails, her hypocrisy about rape victims deserving to be believed, and her venality with the Clinton Foundation. It's the same dishonesty that informed her behavior on the Watergate committee, her secretiveness about her attempt to overhaul health care, and her excuses for her misbehavior. It's the same contempt for other people that informed her treatment of the Secret Service, her expectation that the public would believe her lies, and her treatment of Senator Brooke. It all fits.

The public has gotten so used to her behavior that the only surprise would be if she ever changed.

But she never will. Once a sociopath, always a sociopath. 

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

In my opinion, Hillary, seems the more frightening of the two (meaning between Bill and herself). Hillary is the ICE QUEEN - she truly cares about no-one, having an out-of-control ambition to stay at the top. What alarms me is all the people who excuse her behaviors, her temperament, not realizing that the woman is criminally unstable, insane.

- Susan

John Craig said...

Susan --
Bill's pretty much capable of anything himself, but at least he comes across like a normal guy. She comes across like a latter day Lady MacBeth.

Jokah Macpherson said...

So...what's Chelsea like? If she's halfway normal after being raised by those two it's a minor miracle.

John Craig said...

Jokah --
I had the same thought, and, evidently, she isn't:

http://justnotsaid.blogspot.com/2014/07/how-weird-chelsea-clinton-is-getting-in.html

arthur thurman said...

I didn't know the full story about the commencement speech. Some would say she had the guts to stick it to the Senator as he was sitting there. Others would be more inclined to call it crass and disrespectful for a 21 year old to criticize and attempt to dress down an invited speaker. Every time I think my opinion of her has hit the bottom....

John Craig said...

Arthur --
Yes, sociopaths do all sorts of things that others may admire as nervy or gutsy. But sociopaths don't have the same emotional reactions as others, so to them, it takes no special nerve or courage, it's just business as usual. And who knows, maybe she was on target with her criticisms of Brooke; but either way, it's an awfully presumptuous action for a 21-year-old to take.

Anonymous said...

I know it is bad when I over-praise you, Mister Craig.
But this is a really good blog post, I particularly admire the calm measured tone.

Me once I start talking about Hillary, I get too over-the-top, stylistically I weaken a good argument. Here we see you making a thorough appraisal of a bad person, while never losing a serious and adult and reasonable manner-of-speaking.

Your work (at this level) deserves to reach a wide or wider or very wide audience.

====FAKE BABA

John Craig said...

FAKE BABA --
Thank you very much, as always.

But I must correct you, it is NOT bad to overpraise me. in fact, I'd go so far as to say there's no such thing.

I know exactly what you mean, I tend to get carried away when talking about Hillary too. Trust me, I come across a lot smarter over the internet than I do in person.

jova said...

Thanks for the alert. It has always surprised me that Hillary is such a poor politician but a good liar.

John Craig said...

Jova --
I think she seems like a better liar than she is because the media never calls her on her lies. If Trump says something hyperbolic, or that can be twisted around to look bad, the media jumps on it and makes it a national issue. But if Hillary brazenly lies, all we hear from the MSM are crickets. It's the old "if a tree falls in the woods....." situation.

Anonymous said...

question for all

If Trump stated he would accept only single female muslims , because they pose no risk of being rapists and a much lower risk of committing terrorism would he lose any supporters ?

could he gain any female voters by this police ? It would highlight how females are the victims of oppression in the middle East, often forced into marriages with their cousins and at risk for becoming sex slaves. Since Europe has accepted 800,000 young muslim refugees and less than 400,000 females there must be an excess number of single female muslims.

I certainly would be less opposed to accepting 25,000 young muslim single females than 1,000 muslim males.

John Craig said...

Anon --
That's a good question. As you point out, Europe has been getting the opposite, mostly young Muslim males, many of whom would like to do to European women what they do to their own women back home. It's also true that while there have been female suicide bombers, females on average commit far less violence in general, and far less terrorism.

He wouldn't lose my vote if he suggested that, but if he did, the media would of course scream bloody murder, and interpret it in the worst possible way they could.

jova said...

the media has already attacked Trump for his stance to ban muslim immigrants.
Altering his stance to allow Muslim women in would thus be moving left, toward the Democratic position. He could also point out that close to 80% of h1B visas we grant to Asians go to mostly men. So he could highlight the lack of women in tech is partly due to our immigration policy which grants Visas to mostly men. Allowing only Muslim females in would help reduce the sex imbalance we already have.

the problem with letting in 10,000 muslim females, they would quickly get visas for their Husbands (usually their first cousins) so Trump would need to change the immigration laws to eliminate this risk.

Rifleman said...

I don't know if the story below is true or just anti Hillary agit prop.

Hillary and the lesser beings

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CsNtPIzWEAAo9yq.jpg

John Craig said...

Rifleman --
That's a great story, thank you for that. You're right, we can't ascertain that, but given everything else we know about her, it certainly fits.

Anonymous said...

Wow John, you have really triggered me now. Because Hillary Clinton is a subject that I can go on and on and on about. She literally sets something off in me.

I may or may not come back to this in a few days, because I really need to be positive now and Hillary Clinton just makes me feel very very negative.

I just wanted to say that with respect to Chelsea Clinton, you are on to something. I never paid much attention to her. Of course, I realized that all of her jobs are make work jobs that she got because she's Chelsea Clinton. I can't really blame her for that, Although she deserves no credit. In other words, I just thought that she was a regression to the mean mediocrity who was born on Third and thought she had a triple. But I looked at her carefully when she gave that speech at the Democratic Convention and I was astonished at what a sub average piece of work she is. Not only that but she has a goofy dorky quality that is incredibly off-putting.

Unlike other Hillary haters, I have always thought that Hillary was very clever at presenting herself. She's extremely self-aware and she knows how to present herself. She doesn't have natural charm but that's not her fault so she compensates by being very very polished. Chelsea has no such self knowledge and she comes off like a subnormal idiot. Don't believe me? Take a look at her speech. Is she had this dumb smile on her face the entire time and she would jut her head forward and bob it at the wrong moment as if she had said Pearls of Wisdom and was waiting for the world to acclaim her.

Another thing. Both of her parents are lawyers, and so is she. She gave an interview to I believe Vogue magazine, where they asked her why her hair is straight now. Okay, dumb question but this was Vogue magazine. She answered that her hair just got straight as an adult. She claims she didn't do anything to it it just magically got straight. Translation into reality: a fashion magazine after the sort of question that a fashion magazine would ask, and she couldn't even tell the truth about that. I have friends who had hair texture like her and as adults they go to a beauty parlor and get it straightened. What is the shame in admitting that? In fact, she could have turned it into a little joke Kama something that she shares with a lot of women who don't have straight silky hair. But she's a Clinton, and Clintons have to lie about everything.

Puzzled

Anonymous said...

About the story that Rifleman linked to I found this:

http://www.snopes.com/2016/08/01/bonner-hillary-k9-handler/
Bear in mind that Snopes is not impartial. It's a very left-wing site. It used to be good but it's become infected by leftism over the years and the majority of its debunking is highly partisan left-wing propaganda. They tried to debunk Bonners story but they couldn't. Snopes confirmed every particular of Bonners story. He really is or was a military K-9 Handler. he really was in turkey. Why on Earth would he lie about this? What possible benefit could he get from lying about this?

Literally every story that one hears of when Hillary interacts with a man not in her inner circle (i.e., someone who serves flatters or benefits her) indicates that she is full of hatred for men. Not so much with women. Of course she is horrible to the women her husband has fucked, but that's a different story. Her basic temperature towards other women is very maternal/sisterly. Her basic temperature towards men is one of hatred and disdain.

Later on, if I have time, I will look up what Camille Paglia wrote about Hillary's upbringing, and her attitudes towards men.

Puzzled

John Craig said...

Puzzled --
Yes, it'd be hard to believe that with two sociopaths as parents, Chelsea didn't grow up to be one herself. And on top of that, having grown up in the White House, she must have an incredible sense of entitlement.

That's a great story about her and the hair straightening. As with all sociopaths, sometimes it's the little lies that are more telling, simply because she didn't have to make it. But, as you say, despite the fact that there's no shame in having one's hair straightened, she lied anyway.

Hadn't realized Chelsea was dumb to boot. Her parents aren't dumb, though Hillary's no genius. Bill's got a very high IQ, but then there's that meme on the internet that Chelsea is in fact Webb Hubbell's daughter, since Bill supposedly shoots blanks, or at least has told a lot of girlfriends that he does. I have no idea whether all that's true.

John Craig said...

Puzzled --
Ah, thank you for checking that story out. I had gotten the sense that Snopes, like Politifact, had gotten quite left wing. It's too bad that this would happen to supposedly fact-checking organizations, but it's not surprising.

That had never occurred to me before, but yeah, you're right about the difference between Hillary's attitudes towards men and women. And it comes across most clearly with thoseArkansas State Troopers and Secret Service agents assigned to protect her.

Camille Paglia is someone I have a lot of respect for. She's by nature a rebel and her lesbianism inclines her toward a certain instinctive feminism, but she always tells the truth, and in fact there's no better debunker of third wave feminism than her. I loved both Sexual Personae and Vamps and Tramps; I remember being amazed that the one person I was most on the same wavelength as was a lesbian feminist.

Anonymous said...

I was dictating this and liars came out as lawyers. I guess there's not much of a difference, but I know that Chelsea is not a lawyer.

P

John Craig said...

Puzzled --
You dictate your comments? To one of those voice-interpreting thing-a-majigs?

Anonymous said...

When I'm out & about, yeah.

Puzzled

Anonymous said...

What is paramount here is that without the push of Hillary, Bill Clinton would have been something somewhat common (but certainly not universal or very typical) in the South, the smart, lazy, not particularly honest but not particularly mean "casual reprobate". Bill and Hillary are in one sense a lot like the Glimmer Twins, Mick and Keith-it sounds weird, but I see the similarities. They both like sex (with women) and booze, and if available a spot of weed or toot, but one was going to be a multimillionaire (as Sailer said recently) no matter what and one would have been a layabout if not for fate.

Hillary married Bill because she thought he was someone she could get in the White House with, and despite initial misgivings she must have had early on, she obviously succeeded.

"sociopath" doesn't quite cover Hillary: she's in some other category, more dangerous than the ordinary sociopath. But Hillary would not have gotten far in a business environment: she's so blatant and aggressive she would have tripped herself up in somewhat short order. She's enabled by a press and political structure with no restraints whatever in its desire to perpetrate fraud, and an electorate with large constituencies obviously not democracyworthy.

Anonymous said...

Extremely interesting article - your case is compelling. Two points though:

1. Having a bad upbringing doesn't necessarily cause sociopathy and having a good one doesn't preclude the condition. Hervey Cleckley's 1941 'The Mask of Sanity' contains a case study of worried parents who brought their son to the psychiatrist because they were baffled by his behaviour, unprecedented in the family. Furthermore, what might seem like a stable and loving family to outsiders might not necessarily be so. Many children are bought up well-fed, dressed and educated but are still emotionally neglected (but this usually leads to neuroticism rather than sociopathy*).

Sociopaths have neurological differences^, which explains why sociopaths remain sociopaths, no matter how much psychotherapy they get. A 2010 study found that a high 2D:4D digit ratio - an indication of high prenatal oestrogen exposure - was a "positive correlate of psychopathy in females, and a positive correlate of callous affect (psychopathy sub-scale) in males"°(Asperger's† and F-to-M transsexualism‡ have been linked to the opposite: a low 2D:4D digit ratio and high prenatal testosterone exposure - explaining why these conditions don't go away through psychotherapy either). Looking at Clinton's fingers might therefore tell us more than reading about her upbringing.

*http://news.berkeley.edu/2013/06/18/chinese-parenting/
^https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090804090946.htm
°http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/abs/10.5042/bjfp.2010.0183
†https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11263685/
‡https://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2014/763563/

2. Sociopaths may be awful to be around long-term, but they don't necessarily make bad leaders. Historians look favourably on LBJ, despite this: http://justnotsaid.blogspot.co.at/2015/02/sociopath-alert-lbj.html

- Gethin

John Craig said...

Gethin --
1. Agree completely that upbringing doesn't entirely determine sociopathy. In fact I've found out about someone recently who's mother and brother are sociopaths, but who isn't one herself. And I have gotten a fair number of comments from people on this blog who say that their brother or sister is a sociopath (and it's fairly obvious that they themselves are not). It's always possible that siblings were treated differently for whatever reason, but yes, there are definitely other factors at play.

2. One of those factors is hormonal, as you point out. People with a lot of testosterone in their systems tend to be more aggressive and fearless by nature, and harder to socialize. And that's always been thought to be the main reason why males are 3 x more likely to be sociopaths than females are. And, as you say, the 2D:4D ratio is a very good indicator of that.

3. Sociopaths are in a sense better qualified to be great leaders in that they are charismatic and fearless and glib. They're also more likely to become leaders because they will do whatever it takes to gain power. They are also less qualified in the sense that they are without scruple, and have no brakes on their personalities. As far as the judgment of history, keep in mind that it tends to be written by liberals. They of course loved LBJ and his Great Society and his War on Poverty etc., and his role in the Viet Nam doesn't seem to be focused on as much. Churchill is seen as a sociopath, and is judged kindly, of course. Stalin was also probably a sociopath, and is not. It all depends, I guess.