Sep 08 2016
Unpredictability of an embarassing election
The most powerful nation on earth, the geography that still absorbs the best and most courageous minds on the globe, has managed to narrow down its three hundred million population down to two embarrasing choices. For their president, and commander in chief.
The two-party system is locked up. Money has reinfoced its power. In once being the land of the free and the home of the brave, people do not choose their faith freely anymore.
And it is still called a democracy.
On one side the democratic party secretly back-stabbed Bernie Sanders, for a curropt politician with a careless history of causing wars and conflicts, Hillary Clinton. On the other side a TV host with the scariest promises rarely heard in that level of power became the finalist of the republican party. And his rhetorics has already polarized the country in two or more hostile clusters.
It is hard to predict how the US (and the world) would look like after each of the two. But indeed harder to especulate that with Donald Trump.
Psychopaths and politics
Trump has an attitude. Those who have followed the Iranian politics would recognize that his character is somehow similar to Ahmadinejad of Iran. Both are primitive and instictive enough to have been resembled to monkeys or alpha gurrilas. And by the way we should be grateful that such profiles demonstrate and manifest such behavior so we can develop an eye and spot it elsewhere in our politics.
But how can an average ape climb up the ladders of human power hirarchy and reach some of its highest tops? Well these profiles are narcissists that posses not much quality but mimicing the values around them and growing bigger by sucking the juice out of the things in their environment without other considerations. Energy vampires as they are called by the public, do not normally hesitate to backstab their support, after they served their purpose for them.
Ahmadinejad which was the forced choice of the Iranian hardliners and took the power with coup by backstabing the rivals brutally, quite quickly started to make trouble for his companions and friends. That included eventually many conflicts with the supreme leader who had paid a big price by taking his side while they stole the votes of a nation in the Iranian 2009 election.
A psychopath’s strategy is defined by “self” and not so much tied to the long term goals of a greater whole, their environment, their constitution, a regime, a party, or an establishment. Their circle of empathy can be literally as tight as their skin boundaries, which enforces no commitment whatsoever, even to their closest friends.
The core values of a psychopaths – self benefit – does not change, but the means of reaching those goals may change quickly by any change in the environment.
A change in the environment, such as being elected.
The interaction of our politicians within the environments around them is still driven by our primate brain eveolved in the groups of 100 to 150 people. Now that the man kind is connected, such small selfish traits of parasitic behavior or psychopathy, and a minor flaw in practicing empathy can have world wide effects and can spark self-organized terrible disasters that would destroy us all together.
It is thus really important to study the interaction of our politicians and how they play with the strings tied to them in their social organizations. It is crucial to follow up how people have climbed up the ladders, driven by their psychology, to see what damages they may cause in that system later. Politics not merely based on sociology, but also psychology. That is what I think is not discussed enough and it is now getting dangerous.
Back to Trump and Ahmadinejad. They have got no empathy. It is quite likely for their Amygdala (the empathy center of the brain) that they both score in the bottom couple of percents of the activity range with compered to an average chunk of normal humans.
Lack of empathy in power is the most important danger that the human kind faces. It brings pure uncertainty. No empathy for the underdog means no empathy for the superior or colleagues. A psychopath will not play within the rules. In this case Trump would probably have difficulties to show long-term commitment to the system, the party, or the establishment. He would not be committed to his lobyists, unless they make sure they have the means to control him during a future precidency.
I understand American politics has ensured ties that politicians stay responsible to their constitutions, but the definition of constitution can vary a bit from candidate to candidate, too. There are official commitments and promises on paper, but there are individual goals and tendencies that leak through people’s attitude and history. And they are stronger with people exhibiting the psychopathic traits.
Trump will serve himself only, and will serve others as long as he needs. That’s the recipe to guess what he will do next at any moment of time. The good side of this is that in the locked up situation of the American politics that does not look like a democracy anymore, there are many narcissists scattered around. It’s pretty much everywhere like this, but these people are on top of the food chain and control many systems confidently and ruttlessly. This system works still and has not reached a collapse from inside or yet from a bottom up reform or revolution. Having a Trump as the commander in chief is scary but will also imply that he will not necessarily collaborate with the rest of “evil”s in the system. He will actually make trouble for them. Unpredictable and uncertain!
Still, I don’t think he would manage to mobilize the population like Hitler did once, or like Ahmadinejad tried. He would probably cause trouble for the people around, and will be – hopefully – isolated or disarmed by other centers of power around him, when they realize their profit is in danger around him. It’s not the case yet and will happen. But I have no idea if that potential hit the reality within 4 or 8 years, or never will.
Point being, deep inside we are all selfish, but the history of our choices shows how far our circle of empathy reaches, unofficially Trump’s commitment circle includes only himslef as much as he can manage to manipulate around. I think his precidency would have similarities to Ahmadinejad’s precidency in Iran. Only scaled up to a global level.
The psychopath’s rival
Clinton on the other hand, has a curropt history but she is more of a sane person. She will play within the rules and will serve an establishment. She will certainly collaborate with a good chunk of moderaltely selfish people, and will thus manage to cause some well-thought damage to the world. To optimize a local benefit of a group of elite that is quite bigger then herself.
Clinton would be the continuation of the current regime. An increase in the equality, where even she as the unofficial candidate of wall street tries to collect votes from by abusing that topic.
Anti Trump leftist camp failed to see that even for the main body of Trump supporters, this is a class war. And they all play with this card. Afterall, this is still a democracy in form and cannot be run by the elites for the elites. No matter which part of the elites you represent, they need the majority.
Face-off type of comparison is misleading and is one of the biggest flaws of democracy. We have concentrated evil in Trump, vs. distributed evil in Clintons and a bigger gang. Guess for yourself which one causes more damage. And to which group.
How did we get in to this at the first place?
And what can we do now?
I sometimes think of “Gamification of ethics”. To make ethics fun and to spread ethical, caring and empathetic values through fun games. One way can be to popularize the practice of disarming psychopaths in any given setting, around any table. First of all, the most powerful psychopaths who cause big wars and conflicts they all start small. Second, there is a hirarchy of power anywhere you look at. Psychopath (and that term includes all of us in some levels) will cause damage for those who are on their blind spots, for those outside of the circle of our empathy. And none of us have a global circle of empathy that reaches far outside ourselves. At least to keep the human kind intact and for the survival of our own species, it is important to bring to the public, the skills we ALL need to posses, in order to defuse the psychopathic traits around us, so they safely inhibit and ignore the careless harm that they can cause to a much greater whole. This way, may be we ultimately avoid or postpone the singularity that will at least end the mankind.