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  •  and that's the point (7+ / 0-)

    that trigger is what defies understanding. why do some ecome fanatics, whle the vast majority in the same circumstances don't?

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Sun Apr 28, 2013 at 10:26:54 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I take your point. Someday somebody might have (5+ / 0-)

      a scientific index on that "tipping point" that makes somebody a bomber or a Charles Manson, or just a guy who takes up knitting.  You could add their body chemistry, their early physical injuries, their diet and environmental factors,
      their hobbies, and on and on and on. It's endless. But the dovetailing of the isolation and the fanaticism still dominate. Without those, the other subtle stuff usually isn't enough.

      "They come, they come To build a wall between us We know they won't win."--Crowded House, "Don't Dream It's Over."

      by Wildthumb on Sun Apr 28, 2013 at 10:34:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This is true of all psychotic pathologies. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Laurence Lewis, 2thanks, wasatch, dbm

      There's strong evidence that the genetic markers for mental illness are not enough to trigger the onset of psychiatric disease - an environmental trigger is also needed.  So in that sense, it is indeed random.

      Thank you for a lucid, thoughful take on this.  Essays like this one are why I spend much of my internet time here.

      "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi // Question: "succeed" at what?

      by nailbender on Sun Apr 28, 2013 at 10:44:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Well, the circumstances are never (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Wildthumb, wasatch, fisheye

      exactly the same, nor are the people experiencing them.

      Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

      by AaronInSanDiego on Sun Apr 28, 2013 at 10:48:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Sociopathy. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Lack of empathy, would be my guess.

      To know that humans enjoy violence one need only look at box office receipts, but most of us cringe to think of actually inflicting such pain. Somehow sociopaths don't. They seem to be born, not made, but religions and cultures can have an influence. In the book The Sociopath Next Door the author points out that countries like the U.S., with its emphasis on the individual, shows higher rates of sociopathy, while countries like Japan which place more value on society have lower rates.

      At a dorm party two days after the bombing, the younger brother said in response to a discussion of  the marathon something to the effect that, Yeah, well, tragedies happen all over the world. Such a blase response to a horror he had inflicted!

      I don't understand lack of empathy for others pain, but I do think it can be exploited by those in power.

      Oh, I used to be disgusted
      Now I try to be amused
      ~~ Elvis Costello

      by smileycreek on Sun Apr 28, 2013 at 12:20:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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