Search Box

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Sociopath alert: UVA rape accuser "Jackie"

There have been a lot of words written about the University of Virginia Rape-gate scandal over the past two weeks. But the one word which seems to be missing from all the accounts is "sociopath."

Steve Sailer, as usual, had the best take on it, A Rape Hoax for Book Lovers. He did an excellent job of analyzing in detail how the purported rape victim's story didn't add up. He also touched on the essential dishonesty of a media all too willing to suspend disbelief in the service of political theater.

But Sailer also referred to "Jackie," as the self-styled victim wanted to be known, as "unsettled," a vague word which misses the key point about her personality. She is a pathological liar, ergo, a sociopath. (The only surer sign of sociopathy is serial killing.) And while sociopaths may unsettle other people, they rarely suffer from nerves themselves. (It actually takes a lot of nerve to run with a huge lie the way Jackie did.)

Jackie was described in other accounts as "troubled" and "unhappy," which also miss the point. Sociopaths trouble others, but generally don't suffer from self-doubt. And "unsatisfied" is a better description of a sociopath than "unhappy." A sociopath always wants more: more fame, more admiration, and more sympathy.

It was this last desire which motivated this entire charade. Jackie has Munchausen's Syndrome, whose "sufferers" (sociopaths all) invent various maladies in order to quench their bottomless need for sympathy and affection. But instead of inventing an illness in order to gain attention and sympathy from doctors and nurses and friends, Jackie invented a rape in order to gain attention and sympathy from her friends and the UVA dean and even real rape victims in the campus support group she joined.

She even tried to get sympathy from Rolling Stone writer Sabrina Rubin Erdely, and by extension, her readership. It was that national exposure which ultimately proved her undoing.

A non-sociopath would never try to perpetrate such a hoax. Try to imagine yourself doing what Jackie did. First, you tell your friends that you were raped by nine guys. Then, you go to the dean of the university and report your "rape" to her. Then, you tell a reporter from a national newsmagazine about it.

These actions require a level of shamelessness that goes far beyond what a nonsociopath is capable of. They also require the confidence that you can always fool other people with your lies, a confidence only sociopaths seem to have.

The only other alternative here is that Jackie is psychotic. But her actions reek of dishonesty, not insanity. She can't even be that dumb, either: it's hard to get into the University of Virginia. (Of course, as a sociopath, Jackie must have gamed the system as much as possible: cunning often trumps IQ.)

Sabrina Rubin Erdely, the author of the original Rolling Stone article, is probably not sociopath. (If she were, she'd have seen through Jackie.) But she is dumb, and also somewhat dishonest, in that peculiar way that so many liberals are. She wanted so badly to believe that this rape took place, and she wanted so badly to believe that all those WASPy frat boys were capable of such evil, that she never looked critically at the "victim." And, she never bothered to let the accused speak.

When the Rolling Stone article first appeared, the usual people saw this as a great opportunity to "raise awareness" of campus rape. But the only thing this sordid episode should raise awareness of is sociopathy. Unfortunately, that angle will undoubtedly be lost amid all back and forth about feminism, politics, and the media. 

So far Jackie's real name hasn't been given, a courtesy traditionally extended by the press to all rape victims. But should that courtesy be extended to those who make false rape accusations? 

I'm curious to find out more about Jackie. What were her parents like? Was she adopted? What was her childhood like? How did her siblings turn out? What other lies has she told? 

I'm not sure what the appropriate penalty should be for Jackie. She never tried to get those fraternity brothers sent to jail (she never filed charges with the police), so it's probably not a jail sentence. But she should be expelled from UVA for the ruckus she caused. And, she did name some of her "rapists," to the dean and others. So her real name should be made public. 

And, if justice is truly served, this story will hound her for the rest of her life. 


Anonymous said...

Yes, Jackie is a sociopath, but this whole obsession with her is bothering me. And here is where I part company with you about Sailer.

The real sociopath in this story is Jann Wenner, the publisher of Rolling Stone.

Rolling Stone is really a Hollywood fanzine. It is intimately caught up in the Hollywood celeb culture:

They created a style of journalism in which it's really hard to tell what's fact and what's fiction. Erdely - who is as you said, stupid, and also insanely ambitious - is a cog in this Wenner wheel.

Wenner dumped his wife of 20 or so years in 1995 and took up with his boyfriend. They have three kids by surrogacy. OK, I realize you are in favor of gay marriage and I don't want to argue that with you, but I am totally opposed to surrogacy, which I think treats a human woman's body like livestock. This is now a thriving, unregulated industry, exploiting poor women.

Wenner's entire life history screams sociopath. He uses people for his own ends and is totally corrupt.

Beside him, Jackie is a piker.

Lena Dunham is a bigger sociopath than Jackie, and I hope the man she accused sues her fat ass off.


John Craig said...

Coco --
Wow, that's the fastest response I've ever gotten to a post.

I'm familiar with Rolling Stone's long history (yes, it has been a fanzine, since the late 60's). And I know about him having taken up with his model boyfriend. I don't know enough about him to say he's a sociopath. I'd be happy to take your word on that, but you seem to be basing it partly on his use of surrogacy, which is more of a political issue than a personal one indicating sociopathy. (That would be a little like basing one's opinion of someone's sociopathy on his stance on abortion; there are plenty of good and bad people on both sides of that issue.)

Wenner may be one, I'm just saying the surrogacy has nothing to do with it. I'll defer to your judgment on the rest of his history.

Also, no sociopath is a "piker." All are equally lacking in conscience. Some are just more successful and therefore big time than others.

Agreed, I hope Dunham gets sued.

John Craig said...

Coco --
PS Just read the Observer piece; yes, Wenner is an ass-kisser and holds grudges. But I'm not completely convinced he goes beyond garden variety narcissism to the level of sociopathy. (When someone's in a position of power, all of his actions are write large. Similarly one could make the case that every President we've ever had is a sociopath because he's responsible for other's deaths, through drone attacks or other means; but in fact, that just sort of comes withe territory of being in that position.)

Anonymous said...

You seem to have two distinctly different standards to judge sociopathy.

One is a screwed up chick - we don't really even know what she said. Her words are heavily filtered through the writer and an editing process. She's a sociopath.

The other is a guy who takes money from his wife and dumps her for a boy toy. Then he uses some female body as an oven for his sperm and pays her off. He runs a gossip mag that has ruined reputations (Petraeus) and the "journalism" is of questionable quality. But we don't know enough about him.

And yes, I can call someone a sociopath piker. What Jackie did was really small potatoes compared to what Stalin did. She was a sick pup, who was enabled.


Anonymous said...

Whether or not she's a sociopath I completely agree that "Jackie" should suffer some form of punishment, or at the very least have her real name published. Don't know the timing of her accusations, but I suspect she may have counted on the publicity of the Hannah Graham case at UVa to fuel the fire of her accusations. -Audrey

Anonymous said...

I remember hearing about this story and then seeing the author of the magazine article, Lena Dunham, on some show. Personally, I was skeptical about whether this took place, being doubtful that a group of frat boys would rape a female (in this day and age) - it's too risky - they could easily be called out on their actions, especially if the woman who was raped notified the police. Personally, I don't think that most of the male college students at UVA are into raping women.


John Craig said...

Coco --
Honestly, I don't have two different standard for sociopathy. There are plenty of rich, famous, and powerful guys I've written sociopaths alerts about on this blog. A few that come to mind are Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, Joe Arpaio (okay, not rich), and Jesse Jackson.

As far as Jackie goes, we may not know her exact words, but we do know what she said: that a number of guys raped her in that frat, that there was broken glass underneath, that someone threw a beer bottle at her hard enough so that it smashed on her face, etc. Whatever got filtered through the editing process we know what her accusations are, and that she brought them to the dean of students as well as Erdely.

You seem to feel there is too much focus on her; but please bear in mind, it was the liberals and Rolling Stone and all their fellow travelers who decided to bring this focus. In any case, there's no question as to her sociopathy.

As far as Wenner goes, please take another look at what I wrote in my reply to you above. I never said he WASN'T a sociopath; I merely said that I hadn't seen enough to say for sure. You make a very god case that he's a slime ball, and from what I've seen he's obviously got at lead a narcissistic personality, but I personally haven't seen enough. (For instance, I hadn't known that he had gotten money from his wife; if he did marry for money originally, that would certainly be one more clue pointing towards sociopathy. In any case, I haven't "cleared" him, merely said I don't know.

Finally: Jackie may be a piker in terms of the damage she has caused, and, more to your point, the splash she has made in society. But what all sociopaths have in common is a complete and utter lack of conscience, and ability to feel guilt and shame, etc. In terms of that, they are all pikers.

One can say that a Ted Bundy or John Wayne Gacy caused far more death and pain and sorrow than your typical corporate sociopath -- and you'd be right. But the difference between them and the corporate sociopath is not the degree of their sociopathy, but the direction it took: the corporate sociopath had a normal sexuality and desires money above all else; Bundy and Gacy had aberrant sexualities which demanded someone dying to help them to orgasm. And that, of course, was far more destructive. But that doesn't mean the corporate sociopath was any the less of a sociopath.

Also, keep in mind, most sociopaths don't have the opportunity to be as destructive as they please. When they become dictators -- like Stalin, as you point out -- that's when we see their personalities emerge in full flower. But again, the lack of opportunity doesn't equate with decency.

John Craig said...

Audrey --
Good point, Jackie probably felt emboldened by the atmosphere on campus created by the Hannah Graham case.

John Craig said...

Birdie -
It sounds as if you're saying the author of the article was Lena Dunham; it wasn't, it was Sabrina Rubin Erdely.

I agree that the vast majority of students at UV are not raping women. There are groups of males who rape women from time to time, but they tend not to be the white frat boys that the feminists want to think they are.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I meant Sabrina Rubin Ederly. I saw her on some t.v. program in the evening, talking about her article, having just learned about the Rolling Stone article that day, I believe. I listened to the author speak, wondering at the same time she spoke, why a group of young guys would do something that stupid - it seemed unlikely to me. Anyway, I found out (via a co-worker who likes to keep me posted about the local news - I live in Ch'ville, VA) that the story was apparently a hoax. I was kind of proud of myself for doubting it in the first place.


John Craig said...

Birdie --
Your ability to sniff out the hoax was probably aided by your own long exposure to a sociopath, as well as your residency in Charlottesville.

Remnant said...

Fascinating take, one that I - even as a longtime reader of yours -- did not see coming.

Even Sailer, who has been at the forefront of analysing the problems with this story, has taken a "sympathetic" view of Jackie, who is "troubled" and many other psychobabble-ish buzzwords. Your view indicates that such shows of sympathy are misplaced and also misleading.

Based on the accuracy of many of your past posts about the female socioopath type: faking illnesses and that sort of thing, I think your analysis in this case should be taken seriously.

You should send it to Sailer.

Also, I suggest you change the title of this post to something like "Sociopath alert: UVA Rape Accuser "Jackie"" to pick up more well-deserved hits on this. It should be more widely discussed.

John Craig said...

Remnant --
Thank you, I will change the headline as per your suggestion. I'm not even sure I know how to submit a comment to Sailer anymore with his new format, I haven't submitted one in a while, but I'll try.

Steve Sailer said...

A lot of slack is extended to very young women like this Jackie person precisely because they are young women. In contrast, the reporter is in her early 40s so she ought to be old enough to know better. But she has a long history of finding sources of dubious sanity and ginning up big stories out of their tales: e.g., the transgender person who is being framed for murder when really the neo-Nazi attacked his/her scissors with his chest.

John Craig said...

Steve --
Jackie was 18 when this "rape" occurred, and 19 or 20 when she told the story. That's plenty old enough to be responsible for one's actions. (All the literature on sociopathy indicates that the diagnosis can be made by age 18.)

Okay, good point about Erdely. I'm glad to see she's getting her comeuppance here, and that this story will forever be attached to her name.

Anonymous said...

This whole story isn't all that surprising to me, as the only sociopath I had the pleasure of dealing with also had Munchausen and also contacted a local magazine and was sure to have a whole write up about his "beating cancer" and how "amazing" he was to run marathons during treatments. I unfortunately, believed this and even had my comments printed in this magazine discussing how "incredible" his "strength" was to be able to accomplish such things while supposedly undergoing radiation.

John Craig said...

Anon --
"Cancer" seems to be a favorite among sociopaths. When I was 25, I knew a sociopath with Munchausen's as well, and fell for her story as well. It's embarrassing in retrospect, but we're all allowed to be fooled once. Here's my story:

Erdely evidently has been taken a number of times, so she has no excuse. But I guess a liberal never lets the truth get in the way of her cause.

Unknown said...

I, too, thought Munchausen's when I heard the story.

John Craig said...

Bob --
You were right. It's interesting because it's sort of a variant on Munchausen's, not the usual illness, but something similarly calculated to elicit sympathy.

Jokah Macpherson said...

Well that didn't take long. Just read on Luke Ford's blog that Jackie's identity is out.

John Craig said...

Jokah --
Thank you.

Here it is:

(Jackie Coakley.)

Funny, I knew a Bob Coakley once, and he was a pathological liar as well.

Anonymous said...

Hi John--I think it's high time you write an article about the possibility of sociopathy with the Cosby scandal. I'm sure you have a clear perspective on it. Thanks, Brian

John Craig said...

Brian --
I've been wondering what I could write about that scandal, and, honestly, I don't have anything particularly original or interesting to say. He's obviously guilty, since where there's that much smoke there's always fire. And it's pathetic that a guy who's that famous would have to resort to drugging women in order to get sex; usually with famous guys groupies just flock to them.

He has to be a bad guy, otherwise he would never have done what he did. But again, I don't see a lot of other stuff that screams "sociopath," the way one often does in these types of cases. I was never a fan, never found him particularly funny; but that's not exactly an indication of sociopathy. So….sorry, but I honestly have nothing to offer.

Anonymous said...

Cosby seems more like a malignant narcissist-obviously he lacks empathy, but his behavior is more controlled than a true sociopath's would be.

Anonymous said...

Not knowing Jackie or interacting with her myself, it's hard to say either way if she is one or not. So far, all reports of her have come through other people. However, the RS reporter strikes me as one - who went fishing for the most lurid "story" she could find. And seemingly dodged anything that might get in the way of that story. From everything I have read, it was Eberly who sought the "victim" out. The other stories she came across were apparently too boring.

John Craig said...

Anon --
Jackie apparently has a history of lying about stuff like this, and in fact, couldn't possibly not be a sociopath and do the things she did. No nonsociopath would ever take a hoax as far as she did, they'd simply be too ashamed.

I agree that Erdely is dishonest. But there seem to be a lot of liberals who are dishonest the way she is, cherry picking their "facts" and looking at only one side of a story. could she be a sociopath? I suppose it's possible, though I really think that if she were, she could have "smelled" out Jackie as one, and would have avoided her. Erdely wanted to present a one-sided, biased story, but she certainly didn't want to be held up to public mockery as she has been for the past week. This incident will tar her reputation for the rest of her career. So my guess is she's not one.

GT said...

Just WOW - We will never really know if this was a hoax as we were not there but with hind sight being 20/20 it sure looks like it.

John Craig said...

GT --
From what I understand it was pretty much proven to be a hoax, or a false rape accusation, or whatever you want to call it, by the texts that were exchanged by the two after the incident had taken place.

That guy deserved the money that he was paid. And actually, the woman should be prosecuted for filing a false report.

Anonymous said...

I just found a similar one in England:

Eleanor Williams even went as far as injuring herself with a hammer to make her case seem more plausible. She accused several men, three of whom were driven to suicide attempts.

She was sentenced to a well-deserved 8.5 years in prison.

I've never quite been able to figure out why girls like this do it.

- Gethin

John Craig said...

Gethin --
Thank you for that. Good to see her get her just desserts, I've always felt that the appropriate penalty for a false accusation like that should be whatever the sentence would have been had the false accused been convicted.

Why do they do it? Probably a combination of reasons (all of which stem from the fact that these false accusers are almost all sociopaths). They enjoy bringing others down and creating mayhem in general. They enjoy the attention, and they feel they're elevating their own status in society by parading around as a "victim," which, these days, seems to confer status. And because they're bored, and want some excitement (don't underestimate this last reason).

Anonymous said...

Bertrand Russell said boredom is one of the main reasons for human unhappiness, but is largely underestimated.

The lengths this girl went to were sick: creating injuries with a hammer and making fake social media accounts, where her "rapists" allegedly taunted her. The injuries didn't add up in the pathologists' report and the social media accounts were made via the wifi from her mother's house. The imbecile apparently didn't even use a VPN.

What rouses suspicion is the number of alleged villains. This girl accused at least six different men. That alone makes this unlikely.

When I was at university, I knew a "serial rape victim", who even accused a (physically smaller, and very timid) female with no prior forensic history. Bearing in mind that female-on-female violent crime is very rare. Wherever she went, men (and a woman) were purportedly assaulting her. She's accused a minimum of four people of rape, and accused several others of sexual harassment. This bought her much sympathy and attention - especially from men (women were more sceptical of her stories). But when you really dug into her claims, you realised they were fake. Firstly, she wrote in her secret diary that the first guy never raped her. Likewise, she eventually apologised in writing to the female she accused. Unfortunately, people don't usually dig into claims and tend to just "believe the victim". She was eventually diagnosed with BPD and has been sectioned under the Mental Health Act several times. The problem is quite literally in her head.

As for the (very well-reasoned) answer you gave me, I asked ChatGTP the same question. I expected to get a typical lecture on showing empathy towards girls like this (ChatGTP lectures me a lot on empathy towards Cluster B types, apparently failing to recognise their lack of empathy towards anyone else). Instead, I got this:

"It is difficult to determine the motivations of individuals who engage in this kind of behavior, as there may be a range of complex psychological, social, and cultural factors that contribute to it. Some possible reasons that have been suggested by experts include a desire for attention or sympathy, a need to feel important or powerful, a history of trauma or abuse, or mental health issues such as borderline personality disorder or factitious disorder.

It is important to note, however, that false accusations of sexual assault or abuse can have serious and far-reaching consequences, both for the accused individuals and for the broader community. These types of false claims can undermine the credibility of genuine victims, making it harder for them to receive the support and justice they deserve, and can also create fear and mistrust among different groups in society. Therefore, it is crucial that false accusations are taken seriously and that individuals who engage in this behavior are held accountable for their actions."

- Gethin

John Craig said...

Gethin --
Every time I write your name to reply to you, Autocorrect changes it to "gothic" -- you must get a fair number of emails etc. addressed to you that way.

Hadn't realised Bertrand r/ussell had said that, but I agree. And the unhappiness stems not so much from the boredom itself, since the emotion is not all that unpleasant, but from the actions stemming from it. And no one gets bored as easily as a sociopath.

Yes, you've mentioned that woman before. She strikes me as an obvious sociopath with a heavy does of histrionic disorder thrown in.

I've never engaged /chatGPT in a conversation, but my understand is, it's programmed to be quite politically correct -- as you pointed out. And a lot of what it seems to spew out is bland nothingness, along the lines of (woke) corporate PR-speak. But that answer you quote is pretty much right ton target, especially the first paragraph. (The second seems to be the obligatory siding-with-the-"victims" that it's programmed to do.

Anonymous said...

Haha, yes, I do get a lot of amusing misspellings.

You're right: loudly accusing people does sound rather histrionic. She was literally telling people she'd only just met that she'd been raped - as if people want to know something so morbid on a first date, even if it were true? Especially crass were the obvious lies that the male students unquestionably believed. I was surprised that the female students were much less sympathetic to her, more likely to critically analyse her claims and to detect discrepancies. So maybe this talk about women being more emotional, and less rational, isn't (always) the case. Or maybe men are more governed by a sense of justice, hence their higher likelihood of engaging in vigilantism, and so are willing to gloss over facts.

No, if you'd read more carefully, the second paragraph is about false accusers being held to account. I was pleasantly surprised by it because I'd expected a woke lecture on how false accusations are rare and so we must always believe "victims".

I enjoy ChatGTP because I can ask it pretty much anything I like. It's taught me biochemistry concepts I was too lazy to learn in school. I was able to ask it the same biochem questions over and over again, without it getting frustrated. A human would've become annoyed with me if I'd asked for that many clarifications.

It's also good for writing letters you can't be bothered to author. Just input the facts, and it will put it into a letter for you.

But you're right about the political correctness. I've had lectures on showing empathy towards borderlines. Last night, I typed "smokers are disgusting" in, only to get a lecture on being empathetic towards smokers - even though they think their addiction trumps everyone else's right to clean air.

It also struggles to understand concepts a human would. When I mentioned that I'm generally less emotional than most people, it started telling me that I might have alexithymia. I answered "why would I have difficulties identifying or expressing emotions I don't have?" It's like being told you're struggling to analyse a novel that hasn't been written. Then it suggested I might either be a sociopath or autistic, which I countered with "not possible, because then I'd be angry all the time - and anger is an emotion I experience very rarely" so it moved on to Schizoid Personality Disorder. Apart from the reduced emotions bit, I don't have any SPD symptoms. To the contrary, I have a very active social life and enjoy many activities.

It kept pathologising me and telling me I need to see a mental health professional, unable to engage in a more philosophical conversation about emotional incontinence versus stoicism. Then again, it doesn't feel emotions, so why would it understand anything other than what it's been programmed to? It's like asking a blind-from-birth guy to describe a rainbow.

- Gethin

John Craig said...

Gethin --
Hey, sorry for this late response, was away...Well, in that second paragraph, they did feel obliged to include the standard boilerplate about the *real* damage:

"These types of false claims can undermine the credibility of genuine victims, making it harder for them to receive the support and justice they deserve,"

But you're right, they did make the point that false accusers should be held to account.

I suspect that part of the reason guys would be more amenable to listening to that woman you knew was that they wanted to have sex with her, and were acting accordingly.

Funny about how ChatGPT tried to "analyze" you. An emotionless computer trying to analyse emotions....hmm.

I feel the same as you about smokers (though it's less of a problem here in America than it is in Europe).