A Criminal Mind

First Some Fun to Get Friday Started

This morning I was listening to This is Criminal, a podcast that has fascinating accounts of criminal cases. Well, fascinating to someone like me who has always been intrigued by murder and mayhem and the people who seem to do that with impunity, which is why I write about those people and their crimes.

The killer in Doubletake is a psychopath, as is the killer in Stalking Season, the second book in the Seasons Series. However, the killer in Open Season is not. He feels remorse for what he does.

When first developing those characters some years ago, I interviewed a criminal psychologist several times, but it’s been a long time since I’ve done any extensive research on the topic of psychopaths and what makes them. The podcast I listened today had an interview with Professor Robert Hare, a criminal psychologist, and the creator of the PCL-R, a psychological assessment tool for diagnosing psychopathy.

Psychopathy, which is sometimes used synonymously with sociopathy, is traditionally defined as a personality disorder characterized by persistent antisocial behavior. A few of the criteria from Hare’s list of twenty are: glibness and superficial charm, grandiose sense of self-worth, pathological lying, cunning/manipulative, lack of remorse, emotional shallowness, callousness and lack of empathy, and unwillingness to accept responsibility for actions.

While we may associate psychopathy with serial killers and other dangerous criminals, the degree of psychopathy can vary – much like the spectrum of Autism – from a score of 5 to 40. And many of those in the low to middle range, do not go on to become violent criminals. In an article by Tom Chivers at The Telegraph, I found this interesting quote from neuroscientist David Eagleman, author of Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain.

“It’s because many people in the population have high levels of psychopathy – about 1 per cent. But not all of them become criminals. In fact many of them, because of their glibness and charm and willingness to ride roughshod over the people in their way, become quite successful. They become CEOs, professional athletes, soldiers. These people are revered for their courage and their straight talk and their willingness to crush obstacles in their way. Merely having psychopathy doesn’t tell us that a person will go off and commit a crime.”

Other than becoming president of the United States. Ooops, did I really say that? Of course being president isn’t a crime, but I think he who shall forever remain nameless on my blog, fits many of those criteria.

Okay, moving on.

Friday Funnies

“I think women are foolish to pretend they are equal to men, they are far superior and always have been. Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater. If you give her sperm, she’ll give you a baby. If you give her a house, she’ll give you a home. If you give her groceries, she’ll give you a meal. If you give her a smile, she’ll give you her heart. She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her. So, if you give her any crap, be prepared to receive a ton of s**t!” Sir William Golding

Late one night a burglar broke into a house and while he was sneaking around he heard a voice say, “Jesús is watching you.” He looked around and saw nothing. He kept on creeping and again heard, “Jesús is watching you.”

In a dark corner, he saw a cage with a parrot inside. The burglar asked the parrot, “Was it you who said Jesús is watching me” The parrot replied, “Yes.”

Relieved, the burglar asked, “What is your name?” The parrot said, “Clarence.”

The burglar said, “That’s a stupid name for a parrot. What idiot named you Clarence?”

The parrot answered, “The same idiot that named the rottweiler Jesús.”

One day a duck walks in a store and ask the manager if they sell grapes. The manager says, “No, we don’t sell grapes.” The duck goes home and comes back the next day and asks the same question. The manager says the same thing again, “No, we do not sell grapes.” The duck goes home, comes back the next day, and asks the manager if they sell grapes. This time the manager says, “No, we don’t sell grapes! If you ask one more time, I will nail your beak to the floor!” The duck goes home. It comes back the next day and asks the manager if he has any nails. The manager says, “No, I don’t have any nails.” The duck says, “Okay, good. Do you sell grapes?”

(Last two jokes courtesy of the Laugh Factory)

That’s all for me, folks. Share a joke if you care to, and do let me know which one you like best. I thought the Golding one was quite clever. When a friend sent it to me via e-mail, I thought it was a serious quote until the punchline.

Do you share my interest in the criminal mind? Speaking of which, do you like the television show Criminal Minds? Other than the really gory scenes, I do like the exploration of the crimes and the interplay between the characters. It is one show I have really missed since I have not been able to watch very much television for almost a year.

Have a great weekend.

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