* this via kathy:
"The Associated Press reported on July 7, 2006 that the Army has discharged at least 1,000 soldiers for having personality disorders. This is news in light of some of the atrocities that U.S. soldiers have committed in Iraq wantonly killing civilians and in one case of pre-meditatively raping a 15 year old Iraqi girl and then killing her and her family.
The problem that I have is that the Army apparently only deals with enlisted personnel. Watching the behavior of President Bush, Defense Secretray Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleeza Rice, and a few other of the architiects of the U.S. policy of immorally, and pre-emptively going to war in Iraq, I suspect that they have personality disorders too. In fact their charming and manipulative ability to wreak havoc on their nation and the world with their glib rationalizations with no apparent remorse or regret or ability to acknowledge culpability and responsiblity for their errors in judgement resulting in horrorible consequence, makes me think that they have anti-social personality disorder as well. Unfortunately, as elected officials, they cannot be "discharged". However, it should give voters pause in the future to consider the "character" of the people they are voting for. There are not mentally healthy people or they could not do the things that that they do.
Further, it should be noted that armies and nations need their psychopaths. They often rise to levels of leadership as Adolph Hitler, Milosevich, Ken Lay, President Bush and others have. And then they cause great suffering to their people and to the world. They apparently have no conscience, no capacity to empathize with suffering of others on whom they prey. They often are very charismatic, charming, manipulative and convincing as long as they are getting their way and getting what they want. When you cross them, they can be cold, cruel, calculating, bullying, and with weapons, deadly.
The places where psychopaths, anti-social personality disorders, can flourish is in the Armed Forces where you not only can kill people with impunity, but be rewarded for it, in business where cut throat success is often significanty financially rewarded, and in politics where you get to enjoy power, adulation, and the perks that come with access which are so easily abused as we see these days with the Abramoff scandal, the Valerie Plame affair, and the negative campaigning and impugning of opponents which would never be tolerated in any other social arena.
The estimate is that 4% or 1 out 25 people are sociopaths, that is that they have anti-social personality disorder."