Rad’s video


I just got around to watching Cristina Rad’s rebuttal of Jaclyn Glenn — it’s often difficult to find a spot of time and a quiet place to watch videos when I’m flitting about. It’s very good.

It pins down a lot of my difficulties with the “He’s Crazy!” brigade. It’s just not an explanation. It’s about as useful as declaring that he’s possessed by a demon. It’s also as universally applicable: was Adolf Hitler insane? How about George W. Bush? Nelson Mandela? Richard Dawkins? If you’re just going to say that mental illness is believing strongly in something that other people find repugnant, then they’re all bug-buggering nuts, and ought to be locked up.

Or if you’re going to try and narrow it down to just those who rationalize doing physical harm to others (you’d have to be crazy to murder people, you know!) then please, do send the men in white coats to pick up Obama. And all the legislators who passed ‘stand your ground’ laws, and support the death penalty. And the entire roster of the Texas Open Carry organization. And at last, we’ll be able to lock up Sheriff Joe Arpaio. It might also mean you get locked up, but I’m willing to pay that price.

I think part of the problem is an excessively reductionist attitude that leads to a kind of identity essentialism. You are who you are because that is your nature (an entirely circular argument), and that nature is determined, so that if you differ from my nature, it can’t be because you are misinformed, confused, miseducated, or warped by your circumstances — it must be because your nature is broken and defective. And sadly, there’s nothing to be done about that other than to label you as someone outside the healthy circle of humanity and ostracize you.

That’s also visible in the recommendations some people make to deal with these problems. Bullies, rapists, misogynists are treated as an external force of nature, rather than as part of our communities already — they only possible response is for us sane ones to change our behavior to defend against them. We can’t possibly recognize the bullies’ existence as part of us, because that would change our essential view of our society as a good one. So we set them apart, insist that it is neither our responsibility nor within our power to change their beliefs, and we let ourselves suffer to maintain the fiction. The demons will occasionally possess one of us, making them an Other, and thereby justify isolating them.

Gosh, I hope the word doesn’t get out that you have to be insane to not go to church. Or has it already?

Comments

  1. Jeremy Shaffer says

    We can’t possibly recognize the bullies’ existence as part of us, because that would change our essential view of our society as a good one.

    It would also mean having to consider that we may be bullies ourselves in some way. That it may be us who are misinformed, confused, miseducated or warped by our circumstances. This would result in having to turn an honestly and critical eye inwards and we can’t have that.

  2. David Marjanović says

    Gosh, I hope the word doesn’t get out that you have to be insane to not go to church. Or has it already?

    The… very similar claim that religion is innate behavior that has been selected for is already out there.

  3. dmgregory says

    This reminded me of a couple of other examples of this “defensive othering” I’ve read over the past year.

    One in relation to people who have left children inside hot cars:

    We are vulnerable, but we don’t want to be reminded of that. We want to believe that the world is understandable and controllable and unthreatening, that if we follow the rules, we’ll be okay. So, when this kind of thing happens to other people, we need to put them in a different category from us. We don’t want to resemble them, and the fact that we might is too terrifying to deal with. So, they have to be monsters.

    And one about Woody Allen:

    If Woody Allen is now written into history as a monstrous child molester, child abuse is more likely to continue. Because if we are unable to stomach the fact that Woody is not a monster but a human being who did something monstrous, we will continue to stoke the fires of archetype, perpetuating the notion of the picture-perfect pedophile, the one whose evil shines through like a 100-watt black lightbulb.

    To chalk it up as nothing more than the work of a monster, to cast it out of the village, is to senselessly re-affirm the same basic strategy of denial and dehumanization that, ultimately, allows abuse to continue.

    I feel like there’s a similar dynamic going on here in the rush to categorize shooters as “crazy.” We can’t accept the idea that we, our culture, our friends/family/neighbours, could be capable of that. That idle talk we’d dismissed as innocuous venting could manifest in violence. So we wall it off, say it was the crazy that did it, that nothing could have predicted/prevented it, so we aren’t culpable for what we might have done or failed to do, and we don’t have to change anything we do in the future to stop it from happening again.

  4. FossilFishy (NOBODY, and proud of it!) says

    You know what’s coming.

    You do.

    The brigade of yelping idiots are on their way. The ones who deny any responsibility for the society that they live in. Their self-serving babble will be cranked to eleven in order drown out any notion that the actions of its individual members define a society.

    Fuck ‘em.

    I will live my life like what I do matters.

    I will live my life like other people matter.

    I will consider my actions, before and after. And when those actions are found wanting I will not shy away from my guilt. I will embrace it, hold it close. Not for any kind of self flagellation, nor to don it as a martyr’s crown.

    But so that I might remember to do better.

    And in doing so I will make the world a better place. A tiny improvement, maybe. But that’s all the power I have, all the power I want come to that.

    The aggregation of my tiny pushes in the right direction are enough for me, because at the end of my days I’ll be able to say in all truthfulness that my one life wasn’t wasted.

  5. says

    Dill. Everybody who likes dill.
    Clearly insane

    I’ve noticed that some people here hate peas, my favorite green vegetable. Clearly, there must be a purge.

  6. Rich Woods says

    @Giliell #1:

    No, no, you’re clearly crazy yourself. Obviously it’s everyone who likes cheese.

  7. plainenglish says

    “Gosh, I hope the word doesn’t get out that you have to be insane to not go to church. Or has it already?”

    Yes, it has… To reject our loving Savior in any way noticeable by my believing family, one must be misguided at best, tricked by the evil one, unbalanced. My teen son merely questioned the existence of God with some of his cousins and all eyes went wide in othering, like the snap of a trap, thwack and it was all over. Othering is a quick, almost painless way to stay safely unaware of what we carry in us, of our shared humanity. Cristina lauds punishment as the way to reduce harm but I am not convinced by observing it in action all my life. Punishment may be a flawed outcome of judicial othering, of a society’s othering and refusal to peel the onion at home, so to speak.
    Yes, you have to be insane to miss Sunday School because punishment. Yes, you must put the rod to your children because God.
    PZ said: “…We can’t possibly recognize the bullies’ existence as part of us, because that would change our essential view of our society as a good one…”
    FossilFishy@5 says it. It begins at home and it begins most promisingly without punishment at home, not hitting and berating family but loving and trusting our kids, one another. Sounds kinda mushy on a sharp Saturday morning so I will segue now into quick noodles with peas… I call the soup garbage and glory.

  8. says

    That’s also visible in the recommendations some people make to deal with these problems. Bullies, rapists, misogynists are treated as an external force of nature, rather than as part of our communities already

    One of my favorite “responses” to the aftermath of the Columbine shooting was The Onion which ran a headline : “Making schools safe for bullies again.”

    Although it happened frequently in the first few years after Columbine that a bullied kid would say “the wrong thing” or write “the wrong thing” then find himself suspended or expelled as a danger to the other kids. No one even considers clamping down on bullying at all, much less with such speed and vehemence. Think about it.

  9. gingerbaker says

    Right – Obama is like Rodgers. Brilliant.

    PZ – You want to make a case that Rodgers was not mentally ill? Find a psychiatrist who would speak to the matter. Have your Woody Allen – Marshall McLuhan moment and prove that those of us who say mental illness was involved ( as well as misogyny) are wrong.

  10. says

    Well said. The other thing about othering people as “crazy” is that it reinforces the stigma against people diagnosed with a condition that makes them “crazy” in the public eye. I recall reading that mentally ill people are more prone to being victims of violence, no doubt thanks to the stigma, but not actually any more likely to be perpetrators than neurotypicals. But I can easily imagine bullies driving an otherwise non-violent person over the edge and being pardoned afterward when the diagnosis is falsely given the blame for the violent outburst.

  11. says

    Rich Woods

    No, no, you’re clearly crazy yourself.

    Hey, I never said anything different!
    Here’s what I’m not: a horrible person who goes on a killing spree.
    A misogynist*
    A racist*
    A homophobe*
    A transphobe*

    *I DO have -istic/phobic ideas. I try to get rid of them, one by one.

  12. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Have your Woody Allen – Marshall McLuhan moment and prove that those of us who say mental illness was involved ( as well as misogyny) are wrong.

    You don’t understand science. You claim mental illness was involved, then presuppose a definition to make it so. You are the one who must provide the evidence to back your claims. not PZ. The evidence says otherwise at the moment.

  13. nutella says

    We can’t possibly recognize the bullies’ existence as part of us, because that would change our essential view of our society as a good one.

    The most horrible thing about this very common attitude is that the unlimited number of victims injured or killed by the bullies it supports is considered perfectly acceptable just to prop up a cozy worldview.

  14. says

    I saw in the comments to the video that someone made this claim:

    1. Rodgers was getting psychiatric counseling.

    2. Most MRA/PUA types don’t go on killing sprees.

    3. Therefore, Rodgers went on a killing spree because he was crazy.

    If you are unable to see the logical errors in that argument, you’re probably one of the people who has been claiming #3 is a fact.

  15. Thorne says

    @ gingerbaker #11:

    You want to make a case that Rodgers was not mentally ill? Find a psychiatrist who would speak to the matter. 

    We’re not claiming that he was NOT mentally ill, but that there has not been a clinical diagnosis of mental illness yet. Quote the psychiatrist who DOES claim he was mentally ill. Don’t just assume he was mentally ill because “only a crazy man would do something like that.”

  16. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    The motivation for Rodgers came from very real attitudes. He didn’t hallucinate the social circumstances he found himself in. Mental illness is thus irrelevant to correcting the underlying issue, the toxic misogyny that gathers and festers in groups and feeds on its own bile until one of them truly gets sick and enacts all the spoken and unspoken desires welling up in people who aren’t willing to go so far.

  17. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    I mean, what people who blame mental illness are actually saying is that his inhibitions are the only thing that kept him from being a well-adjusted misogynist who simply spouts harmful and violence on the internet… HELLO?!

  18. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    DISinhibitions
    harmful and violent speech

  19. says

    PZ:

    1. Rodgers was getting psychiatric counseling.

    People’s need to other drives me up a tree (especially when they refuse to admit they are doing it), however, this latest need to pigeonhole anyone with a mental/emotional issue as being incapable of rationality is right up there in driving me up a tree.

    I’ve noticed it pop up on all kinds of issues. Just because someone is getting assistance on an issue or has a specific mental illness does not make them auto-irrational and incapable of making decisions.

  20. says

    gingerbaker:

    PZ – You want to make a case that Rodgers was not mentally ill?

    It doesn’t work that way. You (like so many people) have tried to claim that Rodger was mentally ill. You are not qualified to make that determination. You didn’t meet the guy, so you have no way of knowing. ‘Mentally ill’ is a label you’ve thrown on him to make his actions seem more understandable to you. Except, as PZ explained-at length-it doesn’t explain anything. You can’t even tell us what mental illness he had, or if that illness led to his killing spree.

    Based on the evidence available to the public, Elliot Rodger was a misogynistic, racist asshole who was angry at women and went on a deadly killing spree. The way to fight back against that is to educate people. To fight back (through non-violence) against misogyny and racism. To shape our culture in a positive light. Speaking out against rape culture. Pointing out the misogyny in everyday life. Shining a light on everyday sexism. Yeah, it’s more difficult than simply saying “he’s mentally ill” and calling it a day, but your way accomplishes *nothing*. It doesn’t get to the root of the problem. Hell, your way does nothing more than sweep the problem under the rug, *and* cause splash damage to people who *do* suffer from mental illness.

    As for this:

    Right – Obama is like Rodgers. Brilliant.

    The point went right over your head. People have said “You have to be mentally ill to kill people.” Elliot Rodger killed people. President Obama’s administration continues drone attacks–which kills people. If the argument is one who kills is mentally ill, it applies to everyone who kills. It shouldn’t be that hard to understand.

    Oh, wait, I forgot you’re an asshole.

  21. mesh says

    @11 gingerbaker

    Right – Obama is like Rodgers. Brilliant.

    If you’re going to argue that only a madman could rationalize physical harm to others, then yes, by that reasoning they are no different. You can’t just declare that Obama somehow “doesn’t count” because he didn’t personally go on a shooting spree – that’s special pleading. Either a healthy human mind is physically incapable of firing the neuron that brings about human death or it isn’t.

  22. gingerbaker says

    Don’t just assume he was mentally ill because “only a crazy man would do something like that.”

    Why not? See if you can find a psychiatrist in good standing who will be willing to say that a person who commits a rampage of murder is NOT mentally ill.

    Not to mention a rampage murderer who leaves a manifesto chock full of irrational paranoid narcissistic ramblings. That makes just too easy.

    It is the ACT of rampage murder which obligates a diagnosis of mental illness. Rampage murder is simply not rational behavior. Period. Full stop. Killing people at random because of irrational delusional thinking is the fracking example par excellence of mental illness.

    And to argue that in the particular case of Elliot Rodger, where we have the ACT and we have his manifesto which documents multiple forms of psychopathology, that mental illness played no part in this tragedy – that it must all be layed at the feet of misogyny is not doing the fight against misogyny any favors. It merely shows a titanic and tragic bias.

  23. says

    I am amazed by the comments. Rodger was motivated to kill by extreme misogyny. They won’t see it though! Do the work!

    The denials are all of the same basic patterns even Glenn comments. Pattern: Some other reason therefore not misogyny as the motive.
    1. He was “fucked in the head” (Glenn), crazy, mentally ill, insane (why didn’t they watch the video they are responding to?)
    2. Variant of no. 1: He was clearly insane therefore feminist agenda and not misogyny (Glenn too)
    3. He was a misanthropist and hated everybody not just women.(Glenn too.)
    4. Nobody really knows the mind of a madman!
    5. Get over it! Shut up! He has already had his ten minutes of fame! You are a psychiatrist either and unqualified to say anything!
    6. It was isolation, social isolation, rejection, loneliness
    7. He was also a misandrist
    8. Closely related to 7. He killed more men than women! (Glenn too)
    9. He had autism!
    10. Layperson diagnosis of sociopathology, psychopathy, narcissism.

    Why won’t they see it!?

  24. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Why not?

    Lack of evidence.

    Not to mention a rampage murderer who leaves a manifesto chock full of irrational paranoid narcissistic ramblings. That makes just too easy.

    Irrelevant to your diagnosis, but it does show a pattern of hatred. In itself, not a problem.

    It is the ACT of rampage murder which obligates a diagnosis of mental illness.

    This is your presuppositional and fuckwitted idea, which, without outside evidence, is dismissed as fuckwittery. Get it?

    And to argue that in the particular case of Elliot Rodger, where we have the ACT and we have his manifesto which documents multiple forms of psychopathology, that mental illness played no part in this tragedy

    The part that any mental illness played in the tragedy is still out. And your presuppositions aren’t in the discussion, as they are fuckwittery. Get it?

  25. karmacat says

    Okay, gingerbaker, I am a psychiatrist. There are many many kinds of mental illness. There is mild depression to severe depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, personality disorders, autism, schizophrenia, mild to severe anxiety. Then there is anger, which can be independent to mental illness, that can sometimes lead to violence. Almost everyone has a choice of not using violence, with exceptions of course for self-defense, when in military combat, etc. For a very few people, their mental illness gives them very little choice of being violent or not. If they think their neighbor is an alien bent on destroying the world, that person will feel compelled to kill their neighbor.
    From what I have read, Rodger did not have any bizarre delusions, but I obviously don’t really know. It certainly wasn’t in any of his writings. The attacker at the Navy Yard did have a history of paranoid and bizarre delusions.
    What is most disturbing about the Rodger’s case is that he got a lot of encouragement of his violent thoughts through the on-line culture in which he participated. So if you say, we should kill…., then you have to really stop and think about how your statement is contributing to a culture of violence.
    (I am having trouble organizing my thoughts because my 7 year old keeps yelling poopyhead. I had better pay attention to him)

  26. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    See if you can find a psychiatrist in good standing who will be willing to say that a person who commits a rampage of murder is NOT mentally ill.

    How about you find us a psychiatrist in good standing who will say that being a spree killer entails being mentally ill? I mean, a psychiatrist in good standing would presumably say they couldn’t rule out mental illness for a given individual who had never consulted them. However, that’s not even on the same planet with what you’re trying to claim.

  27. gingerbaker says

    If you’re going to argue that only a madman could rationalize physical harm to others, then yes, by that reasoning they are no different. You can’t just declare that Obama somehow “doesn’t count” because he didn’t personally go on a shooting spree – that’s special pleading. Either a healthy human mind is physically incapable of firing the neuron that brings about human death or it isn’t.

    Nonsense. Killing during war is not murder. Your argument would indict every soldier as a serial murderer. Good luck with that line of thinking.

  28. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Your argument would indict every soldier as a serial murderer.

    No, actually that’s your argument, fuckwit. There is no difference between the killing soldiers do and the killing Elliot Rodger did other than the way they rationalize it.

  29. says

    @Karmacat #27

    That is the point everyone is missing. People create toxic cultures that may seem like they have some sort of organic delusion. The culture normalizes socially unacceptable behavior often by otherizing another group of people. A good example of this is how neurotypical people brought their children to lynchings and these lynchings going unpunished by authorities. It took enough people to say this is wrong for this part of mostly Southern culture to die. Everyone who supported this culture wasn’t diagnosable with a “mental illness”. They weren’t all having organic hallucinations.

    So it is plausible that Rodger knew what he was doing was wrong, but fed on a toxic diet of misogyny like PU Artist culture that otherizes women and was motivated to kill by extreme hatred.

  30. mesh says

    Nonsense. Killing during war is not murder.

    You’re really going to have to unpack this bit of reasoning here for me – if you kill a lot of people you’re committing “a rampage of murder” unless it’s “during war” in which case apparently it becomes, what, a natural disaster that just tends to hit humanity from time to time? And anyone becomes fair game, including civilians? How does conflict ever escalate to war if such conflict can only ever be instigated by violent lunatics? And why would this justify going to war with an entire nation if the aggressors are just lone psychos unrepresentative of the whole bunch? Are these entire nations bursting at the seams with mental illness?

    Your argument would indict every soldier as a serial murderer. Good luck with that line of thinking.

    I’m glad we’re on the same page. I thought healthy human minds were incapable of rationalizing physical harm against other humans? Why would war result in such a glaring exception in brain chemistry?

  31. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Killing during war is not murder. Your argument would indict every soldier as a serial murderer. Good luck with that line of thinking.

    Sorry, it is murder. Why are you being so stubborn? Can’t stand being related to a murderer?

    Your whole arguments reeks of the creationist bullshit, that since the universe was created, it requires a creator. Which would never be considered without presuming a deity exist. Just as youre argument from incredulity fails, as it presupposes mental illness is required. It isn’t required.

  32. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Your argument would indict every soldier as a serial murderer.

    First, in modern war, very few soldiers actually fire a weapon against an enemy.

    Second, Rogers rationalized his killing — he decided that a certain group of people were his enemy. In this case, they were civilian women. Soldiers also rationalize killing. When I was a soldier, I was told that the only time that I would fire my weapon would be when we were fighting an enemy designated by the command authority.

    In Roger’s case, the command authority was the misogynistic credo of the MRA/PUA men.

    So, gingerbaker, why is it so important to you, personally, that Roger’s killing spree had nothing to do at all with why he wrote he was doing it? had nothing at all to do with the misogynistic reasons he gave? had nothing at all to do with the MRA rationalization?

  33. Rich Woods says

    @Giliell #13:

    Hey, I never said anything different!
    Here’s what I’m not: a horrible person who goes on a killing spree.
    A misogynist*
    A racist*
    A homophobe*
    A transphobe*

    *I DO have -istic/phobic ideas. I try to get rid of them, one by one.

    And I don’t doubt any of that in the least. But I’m having difficulty relating that comment to your excellent original analogy regarding dill and my admittedly weak response regarding cheese.

  34. says

    Ginger Baker:

    See if you can find a psychiatrist in good standing who will be willing to say that a person who commits a rampage of murder is NOT mentally ill.

    There are any number of psychiatrists in good standing who would say a person who commits a rampage of murder is not necessarily mentally ill. What people like yourself, who are always over eager to other don’t get is one thing: emotions. People who decide to kill are generally operating under very strong emotions, such as anger and frustration. Such emotions run very deep and are a driving factor of a whole hell of a lot of human behaviour, much of it negative. When someone is already having deep, negative emotions, being egged on and supported by a community with extremely negative rhetoric simply magnifies those emotions which are already in place.

  35. says

    i think one of the explanations of branding anything negative as “insane” or “mentally ill” is the lousy state of psychology today that basicly describes everything as mental disease. You don’t like to hang out with certain people you are obviously a “high functioning autist”. You like standing home and reading books you are just an “autist”.You like a genre of music you automatically have some sort of addiction disorder.We do not trully understand madness or even if a concept such as “madness” actually exist.The brain is probably the least understood organ of the body.for most so called “mental diseases” we can’t even pin point an area of the brain responsible.Oh well we just gotta wait for science. In the case of rogers i blame american gun culture+mysoginy+peer pressure+some unknown cause that allows humans to easily kill other humans. If that unknown cause is called “madnesse” we do not know where it is coming from and how to cure it.

  36. gingerbaker says

    From what I have read, Rodger did not have any bizarre delusions, but I obviously don’t really know. It certainly wasn’t in any of his writings.

    Did you listen to the Christina Rad video or Rodger’s own YouTube? There are quotes from his manifesto and his youtube which are very delusional. For example:

    “I will not bow down and accept such a horrific fate. … I am better than all of them. I am a god. Exacting my Retribution is my way of proving my true worth to the world.”

    “I don’t understand why you’re so repulsed by me. It’s ridiculous. …I don’t know what you don’t see in me. I’m the perfect guy. … It’s such an injustice, because I’m so magnificent.”

    I concluded that women are flawed. There is something mentally wrong with the way their brains are wired, as if they haven’t evolved from animal-like thinking. They are incapable of reason or thinking rationally.

    Women are like a plague. They don’t deserve to have any rights. Their wickedness must be contained in order (to)[sic] prevent future generations from falling to degeneracy. Women are vicious, evil, barbaric animals, and they need to be treated as such.

    I am the true victim in all of this. I am the good guy.

    Rodger was in psychiatric therapy and taking prescription medication for “extreme paranoia”.

    Here is an analysis of his mental state by a psychologist (http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/keeping-kids-safe/201405/elliot-rodger-psychotic-psychopath):

    Elliot Rodger was a complex person, with features of both psychopathic and schizotypal personalities. His narcissistic entitlement, delusions of grandeur, paranoia, masochistic obsession with his own suffering, devastating envy, and sadistic fantasies of vengeance all resulted in horrific acts of violence.

    Elliot Rodger’s psychiatrist felt that he was schizpphrenic, and alerted authorities that he was dangerous. Does that sound like Rodger was not suffering from mental illness to you?

    Dr. Xavier Amador (who has patients with schizophrenia) in a CNN interview stated that in his opinion Elliot’s writings (his “delusional screed”) were indicative of a psychotic disorder, probably schizophrenia, evidenced by his “long-term, paranoid, persecutory delusions and grandiose delusions”.

    Op/ed by a psychiatrist in the NYT on Rodger and schizophrenia (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/26/opinion/our-failed-approach-to-schizophrenia.html?_r=1&)

  37. chigau (違う) says

    Every psychologist who makes a diagnosis based on something they saw on youtube should be banned from practice.

  38. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Rodger was in psychiatric therapy and taking prescription medication for “extreme paranoia”.

    Citation needed, as your presuppositional fuckwitted argument is dismissed.

    Dr. Xavier Amador (who has patients with schizophrenia) in a CNN interview stated that in his opinion Elliot’s writings (his “delusional screed”) were indicative of a psychotic disorder, probably schizophrenia, evidenced by his “long-term, paranoid, persecutory delusions and grandiose delusions”.

    Word salad, meaning nothing, if the asshole making the pseudodiagnosis never met nor interacted with Rodger. What part of reality are you having trouble with? Oh, the one where but for the grace of FSM, goes you.

    Op/ed by a psychiatrist in the NYT on Rodger and schizophrenia

    Oh, an OP-ED is suddenly the same as the peer reviewed academic literature? I don’t think so Tim…..

  39. Cinzia La Strega says

    I must confess I am growing weary of these arguments. There is something in all of us that seeks to simplify complex problems by identifying The Answer. Why is it so hard for people to accept that there was not one factor that led to the Elliot Rodger’s shooting? It was a confluence of factors (irrational thinking, social isolation, misogyny, access to weapons), each of which contributed to this “perfect storm” that took the lives of several, and terrified thousands, and all of which deserve our attention.

  40. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Did you listen to the Christina Rad video or Rodger’s own YouTube?

    Because it totally takes mental illness to be melodramatic on Youtube. It’s hi-fucking-larious of you to question whether people have watched Rad’s video because Rad details how Rodger was perfectly aware of the difference between his fantasies and reality. That’s why he killed his roommates and tried to get into a sorority house instead of hiring a contractor to build him a concentration camp. He had a fantasy which he knew full well was a) not real and b) out of his reach, so he settled for what he could accomplish with the power he had and planned that with not getting caught in mind.

  41. Nick Gotts says

    I’m fascinated by gingerbaker’s bizarre claim that killing a lot of people implies mental illness unless you’re doing it as part of a war. Does this exception only apply if you’re part of the armed forces of an internationally recognised state, or do rebels, terrorists, gang members also get a pass? Were the treasonous rebels against the British crown who set up the so-called “United States of America” mentally ill? How about the members of Al Qaeda who flew planes into the World Trade Center? Or the henchmen of Al Capone who took part in the Saint Valentine’s Day massacre?

  42. says

    Nick:

    Does this exception only apply if you’re part of the armed forces of an internationally recognised state, or do rebels, terrorists, gang members also get a pass?

    As always, point of view matters, too. To one group, you have freedom fighters. To a different group, you have terrorists a/o rebels.

  43. Lofty says

    Gingerbaker simply wants to redefine mental illness to mean “thinking in a way I don’t approve of”.
    Basic biblical othering.

  44. says

    gingerbaker:

    Did you listen to the Christina Rad video or Rodger’s own YouTube? There are quotes from his manifesto and his youtube which are very delusional.

    Neither video proves he was mentally ill. Nor does either video explain what mental illness he had. Nor does either video explain how that mental illness was responsible for his actions.
    Also, delusion =/= mentally ill.

    Dr. Xavier Amador (who has patients with schizophrenia) in a CNN interview stated that in his opinion Elliot’s writings (his “delusional screed”) were indicative of a psychotic disorder, probably schizophrenia, evidenced by his “long-term, paranoid, persecutory delusions and grandiose delusions”.

    This is not how you diagnose mental illness. Dr. Amador should not have done this. You (yes, you) should not cite this as a proof that Elliot Rodger was mentally ill.

    Here is an analysis of his mental state by a psychologist

    This is also not how you diagnose mental illness. Neither of your examples involves a professional psychiatrist who had Elliot Rodger as their patient.

    Rodger visited numerous therapists during his childhood. His parents were hopeful that therapy and medication could resolve their son’s inability to make friends and his resulting rage.
    http://abcnews.go.com/US/parents-santa-barbara-killer-distraught-speech-stuttered/story?id=23908059

    Being in therapy does not prove that someone is mentally ill. And even if they are mentally ill, that doesn’t mean they will become violent.

    You’re mistaken to think he was mentally ill. There. Is. No. Proof. As mentioned by others, killing people doesn’t make someone mentally ill. Lots of people have killed someone. Is mental illness to blame in cases of self defense? What about war? What about in the line of duty, to protect others? What about Standing Your Ground? There are a variety of ways in which people kill other people. You’re clearly not prepared to say that these other examples of killing are the result of mental illness, yet you employ special pleading to say that ER was mentally ill bc he killed people. It’s different…*because*. NO. It’s not different. He took lives. Soldiers, police officers, and civilians have taken lives. You need more information than Person X killed people before a determination of mental illness can be made. Moreover, that determination can only be made by a professional who has Person X as their client.

    For you to claim Elliot Rodger was mentally ill-given that we have no proof of this-means that you’re not only a qualified mental health professional, but that ER was *your* patient.
    Is that the case?

  45. pharyngsd says

    Whether or not Rodgers was mentally ill according to the standards of the APA could have been determined with a proper screening test. I don’t know if one was ever applied.

    But his misogyny is a separate issue from his diagnosis, if any. I.e. I don’t think you’ll find “misogyny” as a symptom indicating some kind of a diagnosis in the DSM-V.

    The legal definition of “Insanity,” as noted by Christina Rad is not necessarily the same thing as “Mentally Ill” based on the diagnostic criteria of the DSM-V. One can be legally sane and yet mentally ill.

    Colloquially, a guy like Rodgers would be classified as a homicidal maniac. I think most people would classify a homicidal maniac as mentally ill, even though there may not be a diagnosis such as “Antisocial personality” in place. Now, whether his “homicidal ideation,” as a psychiatrist might refer to it was based on mysogyny is kind of beside the point at least as far as the State, or perhaps the average person is concerned. I *think* that was the point that Jaclyn Glen was trying to make.

    Incidentally, in the State of California, the State can intervene on a person’s liberty without the need for the person to be declared legally insane: the relevant statute is 5150, which is an involuntary psychiatric hold. So it is quite possible for a person to be determined by the State as “Mentally Ill” requiring incarceration even if they know the difference between right and wrong. Most States have such provisions.

  46. mesh says

    @Nick

    I’m fascinated by gingerbaker’s bizarre claim that killing a lot of people implies mental illness unless you’re doing it as part of a war. Does this exception only apply if you’re part of the armed forces of an internationally recognised state, or do rebels, terrorists, gang members also get a pass?

    Well, we’ve already established that it also pertains to leaders who command the deaths of others so apparently everyone in a war gets a free pass on the armchair diagnoses. You see, a shooting spree is a tragedy the warrants an explanation, and it must be mental illness even if there’s no evidence, but war is something that just happens and mental illness can’t be a factor, so shut up.

  47. pharyngsd says

    Inaji:

    No, it wasn’t. If you manage to sit through a Glen video or three, it’s very clear that she thinks feminism is a crock, and misogyny is nothing more than a made up bogey-man. See here:

    Well, I was just talking about the snippets quoted in Rad’s video where Glen was trying to clarify what she meant when she said that Rodgers actions were caused by “mental illness.” I don’t know anything else about her.

  48. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    Right – Obama is like Rodgers. Brilliant.

    PZ – You want to make a case that Rodgers was not mentally ill? Find a psychiatrist who would speak to the matter. Have your Woody Allen – Marshall McLuhan moment and prove that those of us who say mental illness was involved ( as well as misogyny) are wrong.

    What’s in this for you, you stupid piece of shit? Doesn’t being a stupid piece of shit bother you?

  49. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    I’m glad we’re on the same page. I thought healthy human minds were incapable of rationalizing physical harm against other humans? Why would war result in such a glaring exception in brain chemistry?

    Gingerbaker gets to jerk off fantasizing about people with antidepressant prescriptions or ASDs being killed by mobs because “MENTALLY ILL PEOPLE ARE KILLERS”, and also gets to jerk off fantasizing about soldiers massacring civilians. It’s the best of both worlds.

  50. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    You don’t like to hang out with certain people you are obviously a “high functioning autist”. You like standing home and reading books you are just an “autist”.

    [ChrisEvansVoice]Son, just don’t.[/ChrisEvansVoice]

    “Talk to your child about confidently spouting off on things they know nothing about…before someone else does.”

  51. dthunt says

    Hey, so, I’m going to make a Bold Statement.

    “If X were alive, I would diagnose him with Y after one or more sessions.” is a statement that a psychologist CAN reason about, without directly meeting a patient who is, for example, dead. Obviously, having MORE evidence is always a good thing, and it’s always nice to have an object that you are capable of interacting with in order to learn more than just a limited selection of things.

    But arguing that it is impossible to make inferences and predictions that are reasoned based on evidence (that is, things that are more likely on one hypothesis than some other) – is madness.

    This statement is disconnected from the more complicated question of how to identify causal relationships. I just want to point out that folks who are poo-poo-ing the notion that a psychologist can’t use expertise except in a very narrow circumstance is essentially the same thing as saying that learning anything about history is impossible, because it has already happened. This line of discourse needs to stop, and people need to calm way the heck down.

  52. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    But arguing that it is impossible to make inferences and predictions that are reasoned based on evidence (that is, things that are more likely on one hypothesis than some other) – is madness.

    Sorry, what is madness is thinking any unsupported by evidence statement like yours will be anything other than dismissed without evidence is madness. Either provide appropriate citations to back up your claim, or withdraw your claim.

  53. dthunt says

    NoR,DOMT: Are you arguing with my definition of evidence, and the ability to determine that a story related in a personal writing can (with some probability of being true) influence your predictions about the person who wrote it?

    Inference is POSSIBLE. I am not saying that it is EASY or that a psychologist can reason with high confidence given a manuscript. But if you know the likelihood of some evidence on some hypothesis versus some other hypothesis, you can, in fact, make progress, and if you are a psychologist, you do potentially have access to high quality information to inform your background knowledge about those likelihoods, and the relative prevalence of various diagnoses.

    And if that isn’t intuitively obvious to you, you might want to stop and think about that for a moment or two.

  54. says

    dthunt:

    But arguing that it is impossible to make inferences and predictions that are reasoned based on evidence (that is, things that are more likely on one hypothesis than some other) – is madness.

    Oh? How very interestin’.

    In order to make inferences and predictions which are reason based, one does require very good evidence. There isn’t any good evidence that Rodgers was in any way motivated by a mental illness. There is very good evidence that Rodgers was immersed in a misogynistic community which encouraged the strong feelings he already had.

  55. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Are you arguing with my definition of evidence, and the ability to determine that a story related in a personal writing can (with some probability of being true) influence your predictions about the person who wrote it?

    Yes, I am saying the psychologist, without access to the primary notes from the attending, is talking out of his ass, he knows it, and you should too. So, either cite the ethics of the situation, or cite that such diagnoses are accurrate beyond that expected for the weather five days out. What part of you providing evidence for your claims don’t you understand? Or, are you just another person spreading BS?

  56. dthunt says

    NoR,DOMT:

    BT, actually. Bayes’ Theorem.

    P(H|E) = P(H)*P(E|H)/P(E), where P(E) is often decomposed into one one of several more readily available pieces of information, or where you compare several hypotheses against each other in forms like P(H1|E)/P(H2|E).

    If you’re looking for a reason to think that that’s a valid law, and applies to reasoning, you can derive it yourself fairly easily on a piece of paper, or you can find one of a great many derivations (I prefer Jaynes’s treatment, which is reproduced in many places in part). Wikipedia unfortunately is not a great introductory resource here (or at least, it wasn’t last time I looked.) You can think of it as a trick for finding a way to get the revised odds of a hypothesis given an observation from the odds of an observation given a hypothesis and whatever the odds appeared to be before the observation, and there are a number of basic techniques for using it that will help you in, for example, multiple hypothesis testing, and evaluating the strength of arguments from an opponents’ perspective.

    You may want to re-read what I said, because I in fact made NO claims about the topic at hand, only about the bizarre backlash against the idea that it might be possible to learn things about dead people.

    Given that you ignored the part where I said that it wasn’t necessarily EASY, and that I did not make strong claims about high confidence given only a personal writing, and that you appear to have potentially not actually read my comment, and that your response was actually non-responsive (which is less surprising giving the previous observation), and that Troll is literally part of your username, the posterior probability that you are deliberately trolling is looking Pretty High from over here.

    On the off chance that you are not trolling, this conversation (if you can call it that) is still over, but you should in fact still look toward those resources because they will teach you fundamental laws of thought that will greatly aid you in your quest to understand probabilistic reasoning, and that in fact sometimes when someone points out that people are saying crazy things, and specifically raises a question for you to evaluate, you should actually sit down and evaluate it instead of just letting your primate politics completely dictate the form, tone, and content of your responses.

  57. chigau (違う) says

    It is intuitively obvious to me, that any psychologist who makes a diagnosis, for presentation on mass media, based on what they saw on the internet, is a quack.

  58. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    BT, actually. Bayes’ Theorem.

    Not a citation. You have nothing but your inane view that it isn’t a bullshit diagnoses. Evidence comes from places like this, not your mouth. Anything you say without evidence can and will be dismissed. Try again, but go to the academic literature.

  59. chigau (違う) says

    It is now inuitively obvious to me that dthunt requires an enthsiastic
    Bless your heart!

  60. says

    Chigau:

    It is intuitively obvious to me, that any psychologist who makes a diagnosis, for presentation on mass media, based on what they saw on the internet, is a quack.

    Yes. It’s also very easy to tell when it’s a case of blatant othering, offered up as a comfort for mass consumption. What I would expect a psychiatrist who wasn’t looking to other to say would be what Karmacat said in #27.

  61. ck says

    chigau (違う) wrote:

    It is intuitively obvious to me, that any psychologist who makes a diagnosis, for presentation on mass media, based on what they saw on the internet, is a quack.

    Not necessarily. They could also be a dishonest opportunistic parasite who should be barred from the practicing for being grossly unprofessional.

  62. says

    Sure they could make inferences and predictions, but a diagnosis? Um, no.
    It strikes me as a bad idea for a qualified medical professional to speak to the media about these inferences and predictions. Were such a professional to say something like:
    “Based on his videos and his actions, it is possible that Elliot Rodger suffered from a mental illness”
    It’s still just speculation. Worse, it’s speculation that provides fuel for those who want to other ER. Those (like gingerbaker) who see actions like this as a sign of mental illness. Speculation doesn’t equal evidence, even from a professional.
    And again, saying “ER had a mental illness” doesn’t tell us what mental illness it was, nor does it tell us if it was connected to his actions. Even if he had a mental illness (whatever it might be, and there’s be a lot of, what the word again–oh, speculation-about what mental illness he had), without knowing which specific illness it was and if & how it was connected to his actions, we’re left at square one. It doesn’t help. Perhaps if he were still alive and a mental health professional were assigned to diagnose him, it might be different, but he’s fucking dead. Speculating about his mental health when we’re not fucking likely to ever know is pointless and distracts from discussing the very real and very fucked up social problems that contributed to his actions.

  63. says

    dthunt:

    Given that you ignored the part where I said that it wasn’t necessarily EASY, and that I did not make strong claims about high confidence given only a personal writing, and that you appear to have potentially not actually read my comment, and that your response was actually non-responsive (which is less surprising giving the previous observation), and that Troll is literally part of your username, the posterior probability that you are deliberately trolling is looking Pretty High from over here.

    He’s not. Move on.

  64. pharyngsd says

    Inaji

    There isn’t any good evidence that Rodgers was in any way motivated by a mental illness.

    This is not true.

    Not only was he a homicidal maniac, he was also suicidal. From his manifesto: “When I see the first police car come to their rescue, I will drive away as fast as I can, shooting and ramming anyone in my path until I find a suitable place to finally end my life. To end my life, I will quickly swallow all of the Xanax and Vicodin pills I have left, along with an ample amount of hard liquor. Immediately after imbibing this mixture, I will shoot myself in the head with two of my handguns simultaneously. If the gunshots don’t kill me, the deadly drug mixture eventually will.”

    A suicidal rampage in which a person intends to murder as many possible people before dying (and deriving pleasure from the act of killing) is very strong evidence of mental illness.

    Re: misogyny. Although there is no question that he expressed a hatred for women, over half of the murder victims were male, including his three roommates whom he stabbed to death. He actually expressed a hatred for men that had more sex than he did. From his manifesto: “This First Phase will represent my vengeance against all of the men who have had pleasurable sex lives while I’ve had to suffer.”

    It is absolutely reasonable to assume that this guy’s behavior was pathological.

  65. says

    Re: gingerbaker et. all “Killing spree = mental illness”.

    Remember Anders Behring Breivik? He killed much, much more people than Rogers for principially similar reasons and with many other similarities (long manifesto, f.e.). Yet when he was arrested and tried, two independent psychiatric teams consisting of multiple experts examined him and the came up with multiple possible explanations for his behaiviour, some including severe mental illnesses, some not so much. Even now, when the issue is judicially settled, I bet those experts would disagree with each other and debate with one another vis-a-vis his mental state.

    A lot of time and effort was invested into finding out if at all he was mentally ill during his rampage. At no point during the trial the experts recognised as such by court unanimously said “He killed a lot of people, therefore he is clearly bananas, Q.E.D.!”

    If this does not give you a pause, then it should.

  66. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd @ 69

    A suicidal rampage in which a person intends to murder as many possible people before dying (and deriving pleasure from the act of killing) is very strong evidence of mental illness.

    No. It fucking isn’t. The mentally ill, in general, are less likely to be violent than the general population.

    Re: misogyny. Although there is no question that he expressed a hatred for women, over half of the murder victims were male, including his three roommates whom he stabbed to death. He actually expressed a hatred for men that had more sex than he did. From his manifesto: “This First Phase will represent my vengeance against all of the men who have had pleasurable sex lives while I’ve had to suffer.”

    This is pure, unadulterated deliberate obtuseness. The only reason there were more male victims than female is because he was prevented from accessing the sorority house full of women he planned to kill.

    Also, he hated certain men because they were having sex with women he believed he deserved. He hated the men he considered beast-like because they were the ones the beast-like women went for. His hatred of certain men was, by his own description, born of his misogyny.

    It’s one thing to drag up the “more men than women” canard; it’s entirely another to quote Rodger describing his misogynistic reasons for hating certain men and still think your argument, such as it is, holds water.

    It is absolutely reasonable to assume that this guy’s behavior was pathological.

    No.

  67. pharyngsd says

    Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm

    No. It fucking isn’t. The mentally ill, in general, are less likely to be violent than the general population.

    I’m not talking about the mentally ill in general. I’m talking about that behavior in particular. A murderous suicidal rampage is most certainly indicative of mental illness.

    Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm

    The only reason there were more male victims than female is because he was prevented from accessing the sorority house full of women he planned to kill.

    You can speculate all you want on what he *might* have done. The fact remains that he murdered four men (three of which were murdered quite brutally) for irrational reasons. There is nothing obtuse about those murders at all. How anyone can view those them (the other attacks notwithstanding) as a product of a well adjusted individual is beyond comprehension.

    Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm

    Also, he hated certain men because they were having sex with women he believed he deserved. He hated the men he considered beast-like because they were the ones the beast-like women went for. His hatred of certain men was, by his own description, born of his misogyny.

    Your armchair analysis aside, that sounds pretty irrational to me. Does it sound irrational to you? How you would you classify the overall mental health of someone that conducts a brutal murder spree for irrational reasons?

    Charly

    A lot of time and effort was invested into finding out if at all he was mentally ill during his rampage. At no point during the trial the experts recognised as such by court unanimously said “He killed a lot of people, therefore he is clearly bananas, Q.E.D.!”

    I’m not familiar with the particulars of that case, but in my extensive research (a 30 second review of the wiki entry), it would seem that the main question was whether or not he was fit to stand trial. I.e. Whether or not he was legally sane at the time of the murders, in addition to a problem with his original diagnosis. As noted before, one can be legally sane but still suffer from mental illness. The two are not mutually exclusive. In his case, he was finally said to be suffering from a “narcissitic personality disorder” which is indeed a mental illness.

    Incidentally, it’s not *just* that Rodger killed a lot of people. We have his self proclaimed description of why he wanted to kill people, what he hoped to do with the body parts afterwards, and his fundamental desire to die at the end of his killing spree.

    That guy was about as maladjusted as a person can get. Unfortunately for his victims, he wasn’t just maladjusted, he was *violently* maladjusted.

  68. says

    pharyngsd

    I’m not talking about the mentally ill in general. I’m talking about that behavior in particular. A murderous suicidal rampage is most certainly indicative of mental illness.

    I suppose you have a PhD in psychiatry or at least a master in psychology or some other clear expertise in this field in order to make such a statement

  69. Gerard O says

    I made a comment elsewhere on FtB that Rodger’s actions should be classified as a misogynist hate crime, and that still stands. However, there seems to be considerable evidence that Rodger had some version of Asperger’s Syndrome, which technically is not a mental illness but a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). I was diagnosed with AS in 2011 (aged 33), and having read sizable chunks of Rodger’s “manifesto” I can tell you that it is near certain that he had the same condition, with perhaps a narcissistic personality disorder thrown in.

  70. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    A murderous suicidal rampage is most certainly indicative of mental illness.

    Lies don’t approach truth with repetition.

    You can speculate all you want on what he *might* have done.

    That is not speculation fuckwit, it’s what fucking happened. He said he was going to get in the sorority and kill everyone; he tried to get in the sorority and failed. Had he been successful in what he was there to do, the numbers would be different.

    Your armchair analysis aside…

    Again, it’s not armchair analysis. I, apparently unlike you, have read his manifesto and watched the retribution video.

    How you would you classify the overall mental health of someone that conducts a brutal murder spree for irrational reasons?

    Two things:

    1) I wouldn’t classify it because I’m not a psychologist and, even if I was, I have no access to him because he’s dead.
    2) Being irrational doesn’t entail mental illness and mental illness doesn’t entail being irrational.

  71. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Gerard O

    I was diagnosed with AS in 2011 (aged 33),

    Oh, well I guess we should all avoid you and warn our friends about you since it’s only a matter of time before you go on a murderous rampage yourself, being autistic and all.

    and having read sizable chunks of Rodger’s “manifesto” I can tell you that it is near certain that he had the same condition,

    Being autistic doesn’t qualify you to diagnose the condition in others…

    with perhaps a narcissistic personality disorder thrown in.

    or to diagnose personality disorders in others. It also, apparently, doesn’t qualify you to understand that personality disorder and mental illness are not interchangeable terms.

  72. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’m not talking about the mentally ill in general. I’m talking about that behavior in particular. A murderous suicidal rampage is most certainly indicative of mental illness.

    Citation mother fucking needed. Take this out of your mere opinion and see what the experts have to say. Your ignorance is dismissed.

  73. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    On the off chance that you are not trolling,

    I’m not trolling, you are. Anybody who claims mental illness is involved, and won’t/can’t provide citations to back up their claims is trolling. And somehow those without the citations always claim they are being trolled if we don’t swallow their tripe hook, line, and sinker.

  74. Snoof says

    A murderous suicidal rampage is most certainly indicative of mental illness.

    Really?

    Which one?

    What criteria are you using? How are you making a diagnosis?

    Hint: If your criteria are “going on a murderous suicidal rampage” then, as PZ says, you’re not actually explaining anything. You’re merely restating the problem with different words. This strikes me as at best unhelpful, and at worst actively harmful to all those people with mental illnesses who don’t “go on murderous suicidal rampages”.

  75. Thorne says

    @ karmacat #27

    (I am having trouble organizing my thoughts because my 7 year old keeps yelling poopyhead. I had better pay attention to him)

    Isn’t it amazing how quickly children pick up clinical vocabularies? Why, almost any day now I’m sure he’ll be shouting “fuckwit” at anyone who disagrees with him!

  76. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Why, almost any day now I’m sure he’ll be shouting “fuckwit” at anyone who disagrees with him!

    Oh snap. Shots fired.

    /sarcasm

  77. Thorne says

    @gingerbaker #39

    There are quotes from his manifesto and his youtube which are very delusional. For example:

    Based on your examples, and on your diagnosis of mental illness, every denizen of those MRA and PUA groups should be rounded up and institutionalized. Because let’s face it, they’re ALL nuts!

  78. Gerard O says

    ‘Seven of Mine-‘ @76: You don’t need expert qualifications to recognize a malady that you know at an intimate level. This argument seems similar to “You’re not an expert on race relations because you are black.” A true statement in its simplest form but one that ignores the subjective experience of the black individual. Many of the feminist men on Twitter said in relation to the ‘YesAllWomen’ hashtag: ‘Look, even if you disagree, now’s the time to sit back and listen’ — which is fair enough, but why have different standards for those with neurological conditions?

  79. karmacat says

    I have been thinking about this issue more. We are all getting caught up in trying to decide if Rodger had a mental illness or not and what kind of mental illness. what is more important is to look at the responses he received from others. some encouraged him to get help. But others at the anti-PUA site wits did not say, “whoa, dude, back up, you are taking this too far.” Some of them agreed with him. It is almost like there is shared paranoia about women and other men. So we have to evaluate Rodger in the context of his environment, his culture. This makes it more difficult to determine which ideas are due to mental illness vs the environment. If someone starts saying with a lot of emotion he or she just wants to kill others, we all need to take a breath and look at issues more objectively.

    By the way, my 7 year old wasn’t yelling poopyhead at anyone. He is going through a phase where he thinks poopy is an interesting word. We got into a game of stringing poopy and poopyhead into people’s names, such as general poopyhead gen poopyhead. Sometimes it helps to have a child around to remind you that life doesn’t all have to be serious; it can be silly too

  80. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    You don’t need expert qualifications to recognize a malady that you know at an intimate level.

    Not every autistic person presents with exactly the same symptoms and many of the symptoms associated with autism are personality traits possessed by neurotypical people. I personally score much higher than average on autism inventories but my symptoms don’t fit the right pattern, therefor I’m not on the spectrum.

    There’s a reason you need to have a license to practice medicine, yo.

    but why have different standards for those with neurological conditions?

    Because having medical a condition and understanding a social dynamic are not even remotely close to the same thing.

  81. says

    I think there’s a case (maybe not a particularly good one) for the casual use of “crazy”, as in, say, “I don’t understand what was or is going on in this person’s mind”. That’s a useful word for a useful social concept, I feel. Or a lazy one, maybe.

    The problem is people mistaking this social concept for both clinical and legal definitions of mental illness. It’s like the casual use of “energy” as intangible stuff that makes things move versus the technical use which means, um, a more tightly defined intangible stuff. Usually we don’t have a problem with people saying, e.g. “I don’t have any energy today” without getting in their face about potential energy, chemical energy or Special Relativity — although talking about “energy” in conjunction with crystals, DNA with more than the usual number of strands, or higher dimensions is a useful indicator of woo.

    Christina Rad is completely correct to call out Glenn for mixing up the visceral reaction of “totally insane” or whatever and the legal and clinical definitions. The technical definitions mean something definite, and have to pass some fairly basic tests — explained by Rad — before they can be used with any assurance for the purpose they have been defined, which they haven’t been. “That was an insane thing to do,” does not mean the same as “legally insane” or any of the descriptions in the DSM, and shouldn’t be confused with them.

    As to whether or not “crazy” or “insane” or “mad” should be used casually, whether their use stigmatises those of us with various mental conditions unfairly, I’ll leave myself open to argument. I’ll allow that casual use of these words may say more about the utterer’s frame of mind than the subject’s; maybe that’s the way we should read them.

  82. says

    Um, search and replace “which they haven’t been in this particular case” for “which they haven’t been”.

  83. Gerard O says

    ‘Seven of Mine’ @85: None of this talk about “a social dynamic” or what traits ‘nypicals’ or ‘Aspies’ have in common changes the fact that there is a strong case for the late Elliot Rodger to be given a posthumous diagnosis of Asperger Syndrome; I’m sure that many of the world’s leading experts would agree.

  84. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I’m sure that many of the world’s leading experts would agree.

    Oh, well if you’re sure.

    Now that that’s settled (lol), why is it a useful thing to bring up?

  85. says

    Gerard O.

    You don’t need expert qualifications to recognize a malady that you know at an intimate level. This argument seems similar to “You’re not an expert on race relations because you are black.”

    This is bullshit with added racism.
    A person of a racial minority is an expert on their own life. Racism is about the way society treats you, not about the way you are.

    A true statement in its simplest form but one that ignores the subjective experience of the black individual. Many of the feminist men on Twitter said in relation to the ‘YesAllWomen’ hashtag: ‘Look, even if you disagree, now’s the time to sit back and listen’

    Well, you’Re not sitting back and listening to the lived experiences of people, you’Re superimposing your own.
    Listening is valid when the other person is telling their own story, which you’re not doing.

    why have different standards for those with neurological conditions?

    We don’t. Because being “black” or “female” are not medical issues that need a careful diagnosis. Look, I have Hashimoto’s disease. This means that occasionally I will suggest that people get their thyroid levels checked if they complain about symptoms that are familiar. What I DON’T do is diagnose them. Do you understand the difference?

  86. Gerard O says

    I wish that ‘Seven of Mine’ would declare that Rodger definitely did _not_ have Asperger’s, then send copies of the “manifesto” to Attwood, Fitzgerald and Baron-Cohen, and then film himself reading their replies — that really would be LOL!!!

  87. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I wish that ‘Seven of Mine’ would declare that Rodger definitely did _not_ have Asperger’s

    I’ll take that as an admission that you don’t have a response to anything I’ve actually said then, shall I?

  88. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Karmacat @ 84: I said and feel similarly. I think that’s the contention among pretty much everyone here. His brain was a black box. Sure it’s an important piece of the equation. But without inputs it is not going to be much of anything, whether those inputs are self-referential delusional abstractions in a positive feedback loop or some stranger telling you that your emotions are justifiable on a message board. The culpability for the murders stretches its tentacles further than some are willing to admit because then they’d become part of the equation.

  89. Gerard O says

    A big thx to ‘Giliell…’ @90 — unfounded accusations of racism are the best way to start an internet interaction I say. I _can_ make diagnoses of people based on the strength of the evidence: Hitler, for instance, almost certainly had Asperger’s.

  90. says

    Gerard o.

    I _can_ make diagnoses of people based on the strength of the evidence: Hitler, for instance, almost certainly had Asperger’s.

    You’re clearly delusional. You have no expertise beyond your personal story and you think you can make a reliable diagnosis about a long dead person, something the actual experts on the matter are very careful about.

    unfounded accusations of racism

    I told you why your claim was racist. It’s not my fault you don’t understand it. The fact that you don’t engage my argument but just howl about “unfounded accusations” tells me a lot about you.

  91. Gerard O says

    ‘Seven of Mine @92: Much of what you’ve said is insubstantial or beside the point. I, however, am making a very clear claim about Rodger which I would be happy to see reviewed by leading experts. So yea or nay, do you believe that Elliot Rodger had Asperger’s?

  92. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    unfounded accusations of racism

    Co-opting racism to prop up a bullshit claim is indeed a racist thing to do.

  93. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    So yea or nay, do you believe that Elliot Rodger had Asperger’s?

    I know that family suspected he may have been on the spectrum. I know that his described difficulty with social interaction is an experience common to those on the autism spectrum. I don’t know if Elliot Rodger had Asperger’s and neither do you.

    Now, once again, explain why Autism is a useful subject to bring up here.

  94. pharyngsd says

    Snoof

    Which one?

    Suicidal ideation.

    Snoof

    How are you making a diagnosis?

    I’m not making a diagnosis. I said it’s indicative of mental illness. It’s evidence.

    If you think a homicidal maniac with suicidal ideation doesn’t present any indicators of mental illness it’s ok by me.

  95. Gerard O says

    Ah, the appeal to Mysterianism, the dialectical equivalent of the ‘Hail Mary’ pass. Autism is a useful subject matter to bring up here because Autism is part of the subject matter of the post we are actually commenting on.

  96. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Ah, the appeal to Mysterianism, the dialectical equivalent of the ‘Hail Mary’ pass.

    That was me not claiming to know shit I don’t know.

    Autism is a useful subject matter to bring up here because Autism is part of the subject matter of the post we are actually commenting on.

    Autism is a useful subject to bring up because someone brought it up. QED, amirite?

  97. Gerard O says

    For me it’s simply about facing up to reality. A lot of people want to pretend that we’re all quirky geek genii, but Asperger’s is an extremely hard situation to deal with in many instances.

  98. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Asperger’s is an extremely hard situation to deal with in many instances.

    Oh, do fuck off.

    I am an adult who is on the autism spectrum. My son is on the autism spectrum. No shit it is hard to deal with. For Boy and I, along about 16 or 17 years old, we got very good at pretending to be normal.

    Neither one of us is a mass murderer. Neither one of us are Men’s Rights Activists and we are both less misogynist than a typical American male.

    I have been treated by a psychiatrist after an (unsuccessful) suicide attempt. I suffer from PTSD-like symptoms (no way will those at fault admit that I have PTSD).

    So am I, by default, a mass murderer?

    That is the pertinent question. You, and many others, claim he murdered people because he is mentally ill and/or has Aspergers (Autism Spectrum Disorder). Yet he rationalized his murders by citing the command authority of men’s rights activists and pick up artists (the same way soldiers and sailors and airmen and marines rationalize murder during war by citing the command authority). According to you, and others, the victimhood worship of the MRAs, the misogyny of the PUAs, had nothing to do with the murders, only your claim that he was mentally ill.

    I have been treated for mental illness. I, unlike Rogers, have an actual diagnosis (more than one, actually). When you assert that Rogers committed mass murder because of mental illness or Aspergers Syndrome, you are claiming that Rogers is outside of society, insane, crazy, and what he did is only because he is not one of us, he is an ‘other’, he is different.

    So thank you very much for forwarding the claim that, since I have been treated and diagnosed for mental illness, and I am on the Asperger’s spectrum, that I am a mass murderer waiting to happen.

  99. pharyngsd says

    Ogvorbis

    So am I, by default, a mass murderer?

    I’m not sure that anyone is making the claim that a person with a mental illness has a propensity for violence. I’m certainly not.

    But Rodger *did* perform mass murder justified irrationally and accompanied with suicidal ideation. It’s his behavior and thought processes that are suggestive of a mental illness, not some theory that all killers are mentally ill.

    Remember, this guy didn’t want to just kill people. He wanted to cut their body parts off and brandish them as trophies.

    He fully intended to commit suicide if they didn’t kill him first.

    He said that he would enjoy killing his roommates, “in their sleep.”

    He sure sounds pathological to me. Your mileage may vary.

    Tim

  100. says

    For those who are insistent on being flaming ignoranuses (I’m looking at you, pharyngsd and Gerard O), neither one of you has the slightest fucking idea of what you’re talking about, and I’m damn tired of idiots like you who can’t be bothered to listen. Here’s some reading, read the post and every single fucking comment, because you’ll find like-minded idiots in that thread, too, but it will save us covering the same ground for the nth bloody time: http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/12/14/before-you-reach-for-the-its-not-guns-its-the-cray-cray-argument/#comments

  101. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    He sure sounds pathological to me.

    Why is this supposed to be a compelling argument?

  102. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    He sure sounds pathological to me. Your mileage may vary.

    And your citation to show you aren’t blowing this out of your ass is where?
    Those advocating mental illness for ER, ask yourself why are you doing that? So far, I’ve seen two reasons, neither compelling, and both self-serving.
    The first to other the killer, and pretend he wasn’t the guy next door. Pretend the world is a safer place than it really is. It is pretty safe, but nothing is absolutely safe.
    The second is to attempt to cover-up the severe misogyny and hatred ER had. The MRA/PAU brigade is in action on this, to downplay and sweep under the rug their hatred and bullying tactics. Compared to when they are being bullies with rape threats and other off-the-charts bad behavior to those who don’t bow to the hatred.
    Look inside of yourself, and ask which one is you.

  103. chris61 says

    So one can read his online rantings and watch his videos and conclude he was severely misogynistic but can’t go to the same sources and conclude he was mentally ill*?

    *according to what appears to be a general definition of mental illness as thinking and behaviors that interfere with a person’s ability to function

  104. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    chris61 @ 109:

    So one can read his online rantings and watch his videos and conclude he was severely misogynistic but can’t go to the same sources and conclude he was mentally ill*?

    You didn’t have to read between the lines to get at his misogyny.

    You do have to converse with him and gauge his reactions to suggestions that his ideas are delusional to understand how and why he is committed to his current mode of thinking. You cannot do that with a monologue, no matter how long, unless they spell out that “I have been diagnosed with _____ mental illness.”

    You can assume that it is the case that he suffered severely from whatever was going on in his head. You cannot conclusively say that what was going on in his head was due to mental illness. You can guess, you can suggest, you can allude. Doesn’t make it true. Doesn’t make it relevant. If he were mentally ill, and if he had had success with women, he might have latched on to something else to propel him into victimhood. But would he have found as wide a social net from which to draw his motivation to become a viperous arm of that social structure? Can you think of one?

  105. pharyngsd says

    Inaji

    For those who are insistent on being flaming ignoranuses (I’m looking at you, pharyngsd and Gerard O), neither one of you has the slightest fucking idea of what you’re talking about, and I’m damn tired of idiots like you who can’t be bothered to listen.

    I applaud your well reasoned rebuttal to my position.

    Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm

    Why is this supposed to be a compelling argument?
    It’s not an argument. It’s a conclusion based on his actual documented behavior and ravings.

    Tim

  106. says

    But Rodger *did* perform mass murder justified irrationally and accompanied with suicidal ideation. It’s his behavior and thought processes that are suggestive of a mental illness, not some theory that all killers are mentally ill.

    Now the goalposts are ever so slightly moving to irrational which =/= insane, mentally ill etc. Everyone has be varying degrees of irrational at one point or more in our lives. Most of us believed as children that Santa was delivering presents to us at Christmas that doesn’t mean every child that believed that had an organic mental disorder.

  107. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I applaud your well reasoned rebuttal to my position.

    The truth hurts. You may think you are being ironic and satiric, but you only come across as stupid and arrogant. You think you know more than the professionals….I don’t think so Tim.

  108. plainenglish says

    @Gerard O 103: Have you looked at the work of Thomas Szasz and been willing to consider that mental health/illness is a continuum? Being able to apply a diagnosis at any point on that continuum may be helpful but it appears that your focus is aimed at advertising (perhaps at yourself) that Asperger’s is a key way for you to excuse or maybe even blame. I certainly understand that having a confirmed diagnosis in western society aids in getting some help here and there but in very personal terms, I am unsure that it remains helpful. In this thread, issues have arisen yet again about the importance of or the involvement of so-called mental illness regarding a man who murdered women/men because he hated them. He was clearly mentally distressed and his distress perhaps led him to act out his misogynistic, shallow fantasies but the more important issue has to do not with his distress, his condition but with his acted out hatred of others, specifically women, his acting out fantasies that included murder.
    Ogvorbis @104: Your presence/voice is very welcome to me. You are a bright and funny person and I am sorry you have felt so down as to call it quits. Thank-you for being here. BTW, we are going to encounter problems, you and I, if you accept the ‘assignment’ to mass-murderer.
    And pharyngsd and chris61: the extreme of fantasy expressed may have to do with a level of distress. I really wanted to dismember a certain bully who tormented me in early teens. I was distressed. I wonder what might have happened had I been able to find like-minded people who wished harm on their ‘tormentors’. My own little ‘MRA’ back-slapper group. (The ‘door’ is not all the way open or closed and it swings…)
    chris61: “according to what appears to be a general definition of mental illness as thinking and behaviors that interfere with a person’s ability to function”
    Pretty much tells part of my everyday….

  109. chris61 says

    @ 110 throwaway

    “But would he have found as wide a social net from which to draw his motivation to become a viperous arm of that social structure? ”

    He wrote a 140 page ‘manifesto’ in which he specifically mentions PUAHate in two short paragraphs. He mentions alpha males twice. Without conversing with him how do you know where he drew his motivation from?

  110. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Without conversing with him how do you know where he drew his motivation from?

    Where do you? You have nothing cogent to say that is definite and cited. Just more mewling “it has to be mental illness or WAHHHHH”.
    Why are you continuing? Why is it so important to other ER? You are a MRA/PAU or have leanings in that direction?

  111. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @chris61

    So one can read his online rantings and watch his videos and conclude he was severely misogynistic but can’t go to the same sources and conclude he was mentally ill*?

    One requires inference; the other does not. Can you guess which one?

  112. says

    pharyngsd 72:

    A murderous suicidal rampage is most certainly indicative of mental illness.

    You can go join the ranks of everyone else asserting this. Your continued assertion does not make it true.

    There is nothing obtuse about those murders at all. How anyone can view those them (the other attacks notwithstanding) as a product of a well adjusted individual is beyond comprehension.

    Oh, so you think there’s a “right way to be a human being”. Why is it so hard for you people to accept that humans are capable of a variety of heinous actions that can be performed without having a mental illness? Yes, murdering people can be (and is) done without an individual having a mental illness.

    Your armchair analysis aside, that sounds pretty irrational to me. Does it sound irrational to you?

    Now you’re just being a contrarian fool. Seven of Mine was not doing an armchair analysis. Xe is referring to exactly what ER said.
    No, it doesn’t sound irrational at all.

    How you would you classify the overall mental health of someone that conducts a brutal murder spree for irrational reasons?

    You don’t attempt to classify the mental health of someone if you’re not a mental health professional who has analyzed ER. And none of us are qualified mental health professionals who have diagnosed ER, so none of us should be speculating on his mental health. We. Don’t. Know. That includes people like you.
    BTW, humans do all manner of things for irrational reasons. This includes murder. Doesn’t make someone mentally ill.

    God, all you assholes crawling out of the woodwork make it seem like you don’t have to attain any higher education to make a mental health diagnosis. You can do so simply by looking at someone’s actions, without having ever met them.

    In the United States and Canada one must first complete a Bachelor’s degree.[13] Students may typically decide any major subject of their choice, however they must enroll in specific courses, usually outlined in a pre-medical program.[13] One must then apply to and attend 4 years of medical school in order to earn their MD or DO and to complete their medical education.[13] Psychiatrists must then pass three successive rigorous national board exams (United States Medical Licensing Exams “USMLE”, Steps 1, 2, and 3), which draws questions from all fields of medicine and surgery, before gaining an unrestricted license to practice medicine. Following this, the individual must complete a four-year residency in Psychiatry as a psychiatric resident and sit for annual national in-service exams. Psychiatry residents are required to complete at least four post-graduate months of internal medicine (pediatrics may be substituted for some or all of the internal medicine months for those planning to specialize in child and adolescent psychiatry) and two months of neurology, usually during the first year,[13] but some programs require more. Occasionally, some prospective psychiatry residents will choose to do a transitional year internship in medicine or general surgery, in which case they may complete the two months of neurology later in their residency. After completing their training, psychiatrists take written and then oral specialty board examinations.[13] The total amount of time required to qualify in the field of psychiatry in the United States is typically 4 to 5 years after obtaining the MD or DO (or in total 8 to 9 years minimum). Many psychiatrists pursue an additional 1–2 years in subspecialty fellowships on top of this such as child psychiatry, geriatric psychiatry, and psychosomatic medicine.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mental_health_professional#Educational_requirements_for_psychiatrists

    I guess anyone who goes through all of the above in the US to be qualified psychiatrists wasted their time. They don’t need any of that stuff. All they need is to look at a video or manifesto of a dead guy they have never met to determine their mental health. You should spread your wisdom to these people. Save them a lot of money and time. Why, I bet you could just graduate high school and go on to be a mental health professional since schooling is clearly not needed.

    I wonder if there are any other professions that armchair warriors are qualified for. Are you all qualified lawyers? Doctors? Electricians? Physicists?

    ****

    Gerard O @74:

    I made a comment elsewhere on FtB that Rodger’s actions should be classified as a misogynist hate crime, and that still stands. However, there seems to be considerable evidence that Rodger had some version of Asperger’s Syndrome, which technically is not a mental illness but a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). I was diagnosed with AS in 2011 (aged 33), and having read sizable chunks of Rodger’s “manifesto” I can tell you that it is near certain that he had the same condition, with perhaps a narcissistic personality disorder thrown in.

    Yes, his murder spree is a misogynist crime.
    No, there isn’t considerable evidence that he had Asperger’s and you should be ashamed of yourself for such speculation. The connection people keep trying to make between mental illness and murder sprees helps foster the harmful belief that those with mental illnesses are violent. You don’t have proof. You’re near certain? Just bc you were diagnosed with AS doesn’t make you qualified to diagnose that in other people.

    Why won’t you fools stop this?

    You don’t need expert qualifications to recognize a malady that you know at an intimate level. This argument seems similar to “You’re not an expert on race relations because you are black.”

    Does this only apply to mental illnesses? What other types of maladies can be recognized by non professionals based on their intimate knowledge of such? It would be helpful to let doctors know that they don’t have to waste all that time in medical school. They can just consult people like you.

    Many of the feminist men on Twitter said in relation to the ‘YesAllWomen’ hashtag: ‘Look, even if you disagree, now’s the time to sit back and listen’ — which is fair enough, but why have different standards for those with neurological conditions?

    Being a feminist does not require anyone to attend schools of higher learning or acquire advanced degrees. Being a psychologist or psychiatrist does. It’s not a different standard. Women deal with sexism on a daily basis. No woman needs a degree to understand the sexism they face. Identifying neurological problems, however, requires a great deal of studying and education in institutions of higher learning.

    @91:

    I wish that ‘Seven of Mine’ would declare that Rodger definitely did _not_ have Asperger’s, then send copies of the “manifesto” to Attwood, Fitzgerald and Baron-Cohen, and then film himself reading their replies — that really would be LOL!!!

    You’ve gotta work on reading comprehension. The only people in this thread asserting anything about ER’s mental health are people like you (and gingerbaker & pharyngsd). You people are asserting that ER had a mental illness. The rest of us are saying there is insufficient proof and none of us are qualified mental health professionals who have had ER as a patient while he was alive (which is necessary to make a diagnosis). That’s not the same thing as saying “ER did not have a mental illness”.

    @94:

    I _can_ make diagnoses of people based on the strength of the evidence: Hitler, for instance, almost certainly had Asperger’s.

    Wow, this is all it takes to diagnose someone. I guess you should go tell all those psychiatrists that they’re wasting time getting those degrees. All they need is to consult someone with Asperger’s.

    Oh, and fuck you for that bullshit too. Where’s your proof? And why are you so hellbent on demonizing people with Asperger’s?

    @100:

    Autism is a useful subject matter to bring up here because Autism is part of the subject matter of the post we are actually commenting on.

    It’s only relevant if-
    a: he actually was autistic
    b: his autism led to his violent actions.
    You’ve no proof of either, bc you’re not qualified to make that diagnosis. If you were, you’d be a mental health professional. And if you were one of those, I hope you’d be professional enough not to openly speculate on the mental health of someone who has never been your patient. That’s not how it works.

    @103:

    A lot of people want to pretend that we’re all quirky geek genii, but Asperger’s is an extremely hard situation to deal with in many instances.

    And because it is a hard situation to deal with, people turn to murder? WTF? You want us to believe that people like Hitler (what about his followers?) or Elliot Rodger were autistic because of the violence they committed?

    Autism spectrum disorders, including Asperger’s syndrome, are a range of developmental disorders of the brain.
    They can cause significant social impairments, communication problems and restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior.
    It’s important for the public to know that the gunman’s actions can’t be linked with autism spectrum disorders, said Dr. Max Wiznitzer, a pediatric neurologist and autism expert at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital in Cleveland.
    “Aggression and violence in the ASD population is reactive, not preplanned and deliberate,” he said.
    For example, sometimes children with autism will get violent because they are sick or frustrated and unable to communicate how they feel.

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/12/17/health/connecticut-shooting-autism/

    Note the bolding (my doing).

  113. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    chris61 @ 115

    Without conversing with him how do you know where he drew his motivation from?

    He mentioned those places more often than any mental illness, in fact, he mentions none just from a CTRL-F search. He does not mention these either: counselors, psychiatrist, psychologist, psych-, mental, drugs, pharmacies. He mentions ‘medication’ once in reference to his mother’s illness.

    So, yeah, if you’re going to acknowledge my logic at least try to consistently apply it when you attempt a ‘gotcha!’

  114. chris61 says

    @117 Seven

    It requires inference to conclude that his severe misogynism (and particularly his exposure to MRA/PUA websites) is what drove him to do what he did.

  115. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It requires inference to conclude that his severe misogynism (and particularly his exposure to MRA/PUA websites) is what drove him to do what he did.

    BZZT, wrong. The inference is that he was mentally ill. As yet, you have cited no evidence to back that conclusion….

  116. says

    chris61:

    So one can read his online rantings and watch his videos and conclude he was severely misogynistic but can’t go to the same sources and conclude he was mentally ill*?

    His very words are misogynistic. If you understand what words mean, you can determine that he was a misogynist. It doesn’t take advanced degrees and years of studying to reach this conclusion.

    Making a determination of someone’s mental health takes quite a bit of expertise, training, and evaluation of the individual. Unless you’re an armchair warrior I guess. Then you’re instantly qualified to make that evaluation, which makes you an honorary psychiatrist. No schooling necessary.

    These are not the same thing.

  117. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    And Chris61, try evidence from the psychology./psychiatric literature.

  118. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    chris61

    It requires inference to conclude that his severe misogynism (and particularly his exposure to MRA/PUA websites) is what drove him to do what he did.

    Words fail.

  119. chris61 says

    @119 throwaway

    “He does not mention these either: counselors, psychiatrist, psychologist, psych-, mental, drugs, pharmacies.”

    A direct quote from ER’s manifesto

    When we finally did get to my situation, Dr. Sophy ended up giving me the same useless advice that every other psychiatrist, psychologist, and counsellor had given me in the past.

    From which I conclude that he had seen multiple psychiatrists, psychologists and consellors.

  120. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    From which I conclude that he had seen multiple psychiatrists, psychologists and consellors.

    Which has nothing to do with the diagnosis of mental illness.

    Why must it be mental illness? Why are you so terrified of it being extreme misogyny? I have my suspicions…..

  121. chris61 says

    @ 122 Tony

    “Making a determination of someone’s mental health takes quite a bit of expertise, training, and evaluation of the individual.”

    I agree with you to the extent that making a specific diagnosis and recommending a plan of treatment requires a lot of training but his parents clearly ‘knew’ there was something wrong with him. Otherwise why would they have sent him to psychiatrists and therapists over the years.

  122. chris61 says

    @128 Nerd

    “Why must it be mental illness? Why are you so terrified of it being extreme misogyny? I have my suspicions…..”

    I might as well ask why must it be extreme misogyny and why are you so terrified that it might be mental illness.

  123. says

    chris61:

    I agree with you to the extent that making a specific diagnosis and recommending a plan of treatment requires a lot of training but his parents clearly ‘knew’ there was something wrong with him. Otherwise why would they have sent him to psychiatrists and therapists over the years.

    There are any number of mental health issues he could have had. People see psychiatrists or psychologists for a variety of reasons. We don’t know the reasons. He could have been depressed for all we know. You’re making a leap from “he was in therapy” to “he was in therapy bc he suffered from a mental illness and that illness is a contributing factor in his murder spree”. The former is known. The latter is sheer speculation with no supporting evidence.

  124. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I might as well ask why must it be extreme misogyny and why are you so terrified that it might be mental illness.

    Because he said it was because he hates women. Because the term “mental illness” has exactly zero explanatory power. Any other inane questions?

  125. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    This whole “he killed therefore mentally ill” or “he was seeing a therapist therefor mentally ill” schtick reminds me of the cosmological argument for god. The argument, leaving aside it’s many and varied other flaws, only even tries to show that the universe has a cause but you’re supposed to make the mental leap from there to the Christian god completely apropos of nothing. This is the same shit.

  126. says

    chris61:

    I might as well ask why must it be extreme misogyny and why are you so terrified that it might be mental illness.

    The very words he spoke/wrote show his misogyny. It does not take a mental health professional to determine that.
    And again for the 1,000th time, no one is saying he didn’t have a mental illness. None of us is saying we’re scared that he might have had a mental illness. This is what we’re saying:

    Only a qualified mental health professional who has examined and interacted with Elliot Rodger-as a client-can make any determination about his mental health. No one in this thread or any of the other threads on ER was such a professional. Moreover, no one can make a determination of the mental health of a dead person. Nor can they do so online. In addition, far too many people are making armchair diagnoses of a dead person, as if they possess the knowledge to do so. There is insufficient public knowledge to make any determination of Elliot Rodgers’ mental health. Going on a killing spree is not evidence of mental illness. ER *may* have had a mental illness, but we do not know what, if any such illness he had. We do know, based on the words he wrote and spoke, that he had misogynist beliefs.

  127. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I might as well ask why must it be extreme misogyny and why are you so terrified that it might be mental illness.

    I’m not terrified of it being mental illness. But I am a professional scientist, and have been for almost 40 years, and I simply cannot come to the same conclusion that it is mental illness as you do based on the paucity of the evidence and your lack of professional definitions for mental illness. Citations were needed.

    So, why must it be mental illness, and not extreme misogyny?

  128. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    You’re right chris61, apparently the PDF decided to abruptly stop loading on me.

  129. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    That is, however, the only thing you’ve been right about so far.

  130. pharyngsd says

    lilandra:

    Everyone has be varying degrees of irrational at one point or more in our lives.

    Of course. And just because you might be sad doesn’t mean that you’re clinically depressed.

    Many people have also had a violent thought or emotion in their lives. That doesn’t mean that they are homicidal maniacs.

    As you said, we all have irrational thoughts. It doesn’t mean we are all psychotic or severely maladjusted. But if the irrational thoughts lead to behaviors that cause chronic and/or catastrophic problems in your life: unable to leave the house, violent actions toward your spouse, or, I don’t know, mass murder? You are probably ill.

  131. Tethys says

    chris61

    It requires inference to conclude that his severe misogynism (and particularly his exposure to MRA/PUA websites) is what drove him to do what he did.

    Inference?! No inference is required, seeing as he created a manifesto and videos detailing his extreme misogyny, and his desire to kill all women for not mating with him, especially the snooty blondes.

    Your subtle goalpost moving with the MRA/PUA schtick is noted too. The particulars of which flavor of sexism was his favorite is just more wankery from lying trolls who did not actually watch the video.

  132. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    But if the irrational thoughts lead to behaviors that cause chronic and/or catastrophic problems in your life: unable to leave the house, violent actions toward your spouse, or, I don’t know, mass murder? You are probably ill.

    Lies still don’t approach truth with repetition.

  133. mesh says

    But if the irrational thoughts lead to behaviors that cause chronic and/or catastrophic problems in your life: unable to leave the house, violent actions toward your spouse, or, I don’t know, mass murder? You are probably ill.

    Fortunately, actual evaluation of mental illness involves the identification of the cognitions and deficits underlying certain behaviors and not merely defining actions as being inherently symptomatic of mental illness. This is the fine line of thinking that also led to political dissidents in the Soviet Union discovering that they were schizophrenic.

  134. says

    From which I conclude that he had seen multiple psychiatrists, psychologists and consellors.

    The fact that multiple counselors, psychiatrists, and psychologists did not not diagnose Rodger strongly suggests (to me, anyway) that he did not have a mental illness. One would think that at least one of these professionals would have suggested a diagnosis if they thought it would help.

    The fact is that mental illness is not required to become a mass murderer. Bad ideas can do the job just as well (which is fortunate for the military). Some mass murderers really are mentally ill. The evidence does not suggest that Rodger was one of these.

  135. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As you said, we all have irrational thoughts. It doesn’t mean we are all psychotic or severely maladjusted. But if the irrational thoughts lead to behaviors that cause chronic and/or catastrophic problems in your life: unable to leave the house, violent actions toward your spouse, or, I don’t know, mass murder? You are probably ill.

    Unless YOU can provide a citation to back up this claim, it is dismissed. You sound exactly like any MRA/PUA apologist, trying to excuse his behavior as mental illness, instead of being pushed there by angry people who should have shut the fuck up with their violence toward women, even if it is just verbal. It shouldn’t be there at all in a civilized world.

    So, why are you defending the MRA/PUA fuckwits by trying to excuse their misogyny under the concept of mental illness, which you won’t provide a citation to?

  136. says

    pharyngsd:

    But if the irrational thoughts lead to behaviors that cause chronic and/or catastrophic problems in your life: unable to leave the house, violent actions toward your spouse, or, I don’t know, mass murder? You are probably ill.

    So to you, and a few others in this thread, this is all the evidence needed to determine the mental health of an individual. Why then, does a budding psychiatrist have to go to school? Why does anyone need a degree in psychiatry? Why does a psychiatrist have to interact with a client?

    Sorry, you’re just tossing the problem under the rug. Instead of looking at the underlying cultural problems that significantly contributed to a person’s actions–problems that could lead anyone to act in a range of horrible ways–you ignore that and focus on something that you *think* makes more sense. In other words–you’re othering. “Oh, only someone “like that” could kill a bunch of people”. It’s well within the capacity of humans to act in such a horrible way without being mentally ill. Unless you’re going to broaden the definition of mental illness to include “people who kill people”. At which point it becomes even more useless, bc that includes anyone who has killed anyone (those that think murder sprees are a special exception to this are engaging in special pleading).

    I get the feeling that you and others are making this determination based on a layperson’s {poor} understanding of mental illness (just like many people do when discussing issues in our judicial system). That is not enough to make that determination. And you’re not even describing a specific mental illness, nor any treatment. Those of us who believe misogyny and racism were clear motivations for ER’s actions understand that the culture has to change to diminish their impact. It’s not going to be easy, and it won’t be fast, but educating people about the effects of misogyny can and does happen. People can and do change. That accomplishes more than sitting around talking about a vaguely defined mental illness that no one has proven even existed in ER.

  137. speed0spank says

    Gerard O , you are a fool. (Probably a tool as well, I unno)
    I have Paranoid Personality Disorder as well as a host of mental disorders. I can’t even dream of walking into my psych’s office, plopping down on her comfy leather couch, and claiming that I *know* that person x y and z all have PPD. I know this of course because I have it and it makes me the expert, not her! She would probably refrain from rolling her eyes because she is very kind but she wouldn’t let me continue with that line of thinking, because its bullshit.
    My partner has RA and magically that doesn’t make him capable of diagnosing random people that he’s never met with RA.

    This isn’t rocket surgery.

  138. says

    As you said, we all have irrational thoughts. It doesn’t mean we are all psychotic or severely maladjusted. But if the irrational thoughts lead to behaviors that cause chronic and/or catastrophic problems in your life: unable to leave the house, violent actions toward your spouse, or, I don’t know, mass murder? You are probably ill.

    What is up with this highly speculative crap? Where did anyone’s spouse come into this?
    ER didn’t have a spouse. Why even insinuate such a thing unless you are trolling?

  139. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Has anyone claiming that to commit atrocities you must be mentally ill even heard of Doctor Fucking Zimbardo? Suppose not.

  140. moarscienceplz says

    I am pretty new to this concept of ‘othering’, so I could easily be wrong, but ISTM that it necessarily requires comparing your image of yourself against your image of another. If so, I really cannot help othering Mr Rodger.

    I certainly have been angry enough that I fantasized about hurting or killing people who have harmed me, even going so far as contemplating which actions would be most “fitting” to the harm I felt had been done to me. But NEVER in my life have I even fleetingly thought of hurting total strangers. I cannot even imagine a scenario where it is possible for me to plan such a thing, let alone carry it out.

    I hope that I am unexceptional in this respect. If I am not, then I fear for human civilization. If there wasn’t something very abnormal in Mr. Rodger’s ‘nature’, then how can we expect a society to function? If everybody I pass in the street has a fair chance of attacking me because they got rejected for a date, or fired, or flunked a class, how can any of us ever leave our homes?

    Antisocial behavior of ‘average’ people is absolutely possible, witness Nazi Germany or the KKK, but those always involve a mob mentality, not this kind of loner spontaneous combustion. Maybe the internet can serve the function of a Nazi rally or a cross-burning to whip up murderous feelings in an individual, but without the sights and sounds and smells of actual humans sharing in your frenzy, I think (and hope) that only a personality already leaning in that direction could tip over the edge into physical violence against strangers.

    Yes, probably none of us are qualified to diagnose what was wrong with Mr. Rodger, but I have to believe it was significantly due to a ‘wrongness’ that put him outside most of humanity. If I am wrong about that, I really can’t bear to think about the consequences.

  141. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yes, probably none of us are qualified to diagnose what was wrong with Mr. Rodger, but I have to believe it was significantly due to a ‘wrongness’ that put him outside most of humanity. If I am wrong about that, I really can’t bear to think about the consequences.

    Why? Why must ER be othered? What logical reason, and what diagnoses by a competent professional in actual contact with him is there to make the diagnoses of “mental illness”. Your ill-ease is irrelevant. What are the facts? You don’t like the facts? Then what new evidence can you bring to bear and cite in this case?

    Without clear and convincing evidence of mental illness, diagnosed by the proper professionals, and not by those with an agenda like the MRA/PUA fuckwits, you can’t place the label of mental illness on ER simply due to your unease. Why won’t you acknowledge that?

  142. moarscienceplz says

    Nerd, please notice I never once wrote “mental illness”. As for the rest of your questions, I gave my reasons in my post. If I am wrong to use my own life experiences as a yardstick, so be it.

  143. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    moarscienceplz @ 148

    Maybe the internet can serve the function of a Nazi rally or a cross-burning to whip up murderous feelings in an individual, but without the sights and sounds and smells of actual humans sharing in your frenzy, I think (and hope) that only a personality already leaning in that direction could tip over the edge into physical violence against strangers.

    This is exactly what the PUA Hate site is. A mob of actual humans sharing in their frenzy of hatred for women. If you think violence doesnt come easily to humans, you need to sit down and go read some history and pay attention to the news. Look to Iraq where sectarian violence is ripping it apart and has been for years. Look to the soldiers who engaged in the My Lai massacre or really any massacre. Look to the number of incidences of road rage. Look to the number of men who will start fights just to fight. Violence is part and parcel of being human.

  144. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Nerd, please notice I never once wrote “mental illness”.

    I’ve been at skepticism for 35 years, and your implication was overt. It was an attempt to other ER, as:

    but I have to believe it was significantly due to a ‘wrongness’ that put him outside most of humanity.

    How is that not “othering”? It is the definition of “othering”.

  145. moarscienceplz says

    I absolutely did ‘other’ him. I explicitly said so in my first paragraph, then I gave my reasons for doing so.

  146. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    If I am wrong about that, I really can’t bear to think about the consequences.

    Because, of course, the really important thing is that you be spared having to deal with unpleasant realities.

  147. moarscienceplz says

    Look to Iraq where sectarian (mob) violence is ripping it apart and has been for years. Look to the (mob of) soldiers who engaged in the My Lai massacre or really any massacre. Look to the number of incidences of road rage (Where someone does violence to a specific person who did certain things that triggered that rage). Look to the number of men who will start fights just to fight [citations needed].

    I never said people don’t do violent things, and unjustified violence, too. They do. What I said was I don’t think I could ever singlehandedly do violence to a total stranger who never did me any harm. Maybe I am wrong about myself, but several decades of living inside my own head indicates I am right about me, and I hope I can expect the same from the vast majority of people. It’s not a statistically valid sample, I admit.

  148. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    It’s not a statistically valid sample, I admit.

    I read that. I also read the quote I showed above where you put ER outside of humanity. Now, how is that not “othering”? The first rule of holes is to stop digging….

  149. moarscienceplz says

    Because, of course, the really important thing is that you be spared having to deal with unpleasant realities.

    I don’t even know how to respond to this. Are you suggesting I buy a gun?

  150. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Nerd, please read #153

    I did. Why haven’t you shut the fuck up as those in holes should do when in over their head. There is no recovery except silence on your part….

  151. says

    moarscienceplz:

    I am pretty new to this concept of ‘othering’, so I could easily be wrong, but ISTM that it necessarily requires comparing your image of yourself against your image of another. If so, I really cannot help othering Mr Rodger

    We are all capable of actions that represent the best and the worst humanity has to offer. ‘Othering’ categorizes some people-so often those who’s actions represent the dark side of humanity-as not being like the rest of us. It relegates certain actions to a realm of “nope, I could never do that”.

    Here is a little background on the concept:

    By “othering”, we mean any action by which an individual or group becomes mentally classified in somebody’s mind as “not one of us”. Rather than always remembering that every person is a complex bundle of emotions, ideas, motivations, reflexes, priorities, and many other subtle aspects, it’s sometimes easier to dismiss them as being in some way less human, and less worthy of respect and dignity, than we are.

    This psychological tactic may have had its uses in our tribal past. Group cohesion was crucially important in the early days of human civilisation, and required strong demarcation between our allies and our enemies. To thrive, we needed to be part of a close-knit tribe who’d look out for us, in exchange for knowing that we’d help to look out for them in kind. People in your tribe, who live in the same community as you, are more likely to be closely related to you and consequently share your genes.

    As a result, there’s a powerful evolutionary drive to identify in some way with a tribe of people who are “like you”, and to feel a stronger connection and allegiance to them than to anyone else. Today, this tribe might not be a local and insular community you grew up with, but can be, for instance, fellow supporters of a sports team or political party.

    It’s probably not quite as simple as the just-so story we’re describing here. But there’s no doubt that grouping people into certain stereotyped classes, who we then treat differently based on the classes we’ve sorted them into, is a deeply rooted aspect of human nature. Intergroup bias is a well established psychological trait.

    (the following is my attempt to explain othering, and does not represent my views on any mental illness spree killers may or may not have)

    In the case of Elliot Rodger, many people are othering him by categorizing him as mentally unhealthy, abnormal, mentally unstable, mentally ill, etc. I.E. people are placing ER and others like him in a category of humans that are separate from other humans. What they’re saying is : Those people over there, the Lanza’s, the Rodger’s, the Loughner’s–those people aren’t like the rest of us. Normal people would never do such a thing. Normal people, like myself would never act such a way. Only people like those guys. Since I don’t have a mental illness, since I’m “normal”, I could never do such a thing. Unfortunately, this kind of thinking fails to recognize that acting in horrific ways does NOT require a mental illness and often happens in the absence of a mental illness. People kill people all the time-whether in self-defense, on accident, in times of war, etc.

    It is a scary to think that under the right (or wrong) circumstances, I (yes, I’m speaking of myself here) could go on a spree killing. I have never had, nor do I currently have the desire to take anyone’s life, and I cannot foresee the time when such a desire would rise within me. But I am aware that as a human being, the capacity for such actions does exist within me, however remote.

    It exists within all humans. I’ve had dark thoughts, but I recognize how foul and immoral they are. I recognize that everyone else has the same rights and that even if I wanted to act on those dark thoughts, to do so would violate the rights of other humans. I value my rights and expect people to recognize that I have them *and* that I deserve them. I want others to recognize my rights as a human being and to do that…to continue to expect that from others, requires me to extend that same courtesy to everyone else.

    I look at the actions of people like Elliot Rodger and I’m disgusted. In part bc it is scary to think that *anyone* could do such things. But also bc it’s saddening to think that if he valued others, if he believed that all humans are worthy of dignity and a basic level of respect…if he thought of women as people, rather than things that should cater to his whims…if he recognized that the color of someone’s skin does not mark them as a lesser or superior being…if he recognized that none of us are entitled to anything in life…perhaps those people whom he killed would still be alive (and those with non fatal injuries* would go on with their lives without the horror of being victimized by his killing spree).

    * I just realized-to my shame-that in my past discussions of Elliot Rodgers’ killing spree, my focus has been on those he killed. I neglected to acknowledge that he killed six others, and he injured 13 people. I feel bad for ignoring them, bc those 13 people have had their lives irrevocably altered by Elliot Rodger. My apologies.

  152. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I don’t even know how to respond to this. Are you suggesting I buy a gun?

    What the actual fuck? How the hell do you go from “deal with” to “buy a gun?”

  153. plainenglish says

    ” What I said was I don’t think I could ever singlehandedly do violence to a total stranger who never did me any harm.”
    Which means, I take it, that you could possibly waylay somebody more important to you, a loved one, perhaps, who really really pissed you off? You misunderstand ‘othering’. It is not the ability to recognize that the person you are looking at is not you and is in fact someone else. It is a dismissal of that person through the use of denial-tools: He murdered because he was nuts….end of story = Denial. You seem quite fixed on ER’s murdering strangers as if you could get your head around his actions if, say, he knew his victims…. He felt he knew them and that they had disdain for his glorious perfection and denied him intimacy for groundless reasons. He hated women and his hatred may have been fueled by internet sites that encourage othering, like the pickup ones that want to teach you how to shoot down/bed down women like ducks in a row. (Which means they want to give you more ammunition to ‘other’, more excuses to be a total harm to women and all of us…) If you want to understand more about this, all you need to do is be quiet and listen, with respect, meaning not dismiss what is being said because it makes you uncomfortable. Just listen and allow others to tell you how they feel. Around here, I have found that spouting off without due consideration for all concerned, gets you told off quite abruptly. Tony@post #160 explains it better than me.

  154. moarscienceplz says

    Tony!
    I appreciate your patient discussion. I do recognize that othering is nearly always bad and can foment violence and other antisocial behavior. Racism, sectarianism, sexism, are all based on othering (if I understand the concept). But, our society does othering all the time. Isn’t declaring someone a Sex Offender (usually for life) a form of othering? In California, a convicted felon can never own a gun, even if it was a non-violent felony. They are permanently relegated to a different class of person. (and no I am NOT advocating for this to be changed.) Now, I’m not completely sure about Sex Offenders, but I don’t think anyone classifies felons as inherently mentally ill, but they are still never going to be allowed to be considered one of the ‘normal’ citizens of California. So, most people consider these to be justified otherings. Maybe our society is completely wrong to do this to people. But if each of us is in fact equally capable of tipping over into wanton violence as ER did, how can we ever hope to have a healthy society that isn’t perpetually paranoid? Or, is that too much to hope for?

  155. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    But if each of us is in fact equally capable of tipping over into wanton violence as ER did, how can we ever hope to have a healthy society that isn’t perpetually paranoid? Or, is that too much to hope for?

    What it means it that we have to quit othering those commit atrocities as a first step. Until you admit that serial killers are a part of humanity, you can’t cure humanity. Why are you still attempting to get somewhere, instead of taking the night off? That has been your only hope….

  156. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    moarscienceplz @ 155

    I cant provide a citation for the “starting fights to fight” thing since all I have is the anecdotes from my own life. I can reference my dead brother who loved to do that as an exercise and for the thrill of doing it. I can reference multiple individuals I knew while I was homeless, all of them were also prone to raging out at the smallest insult. However, if you google it, you will find many people talking about such things.

    You have trained your mind to abhor violence, but the vast majority haven’t.

  157. moarscienceplz says

    Arawhon,
    I’m sorry for your loss of your brother, and for the fact that you were homeless. I hope you are house-secure now.

  158. says

    I’ve been switching back and forth between reading this thread and reading some history articles online and now I’m playing a game with myself where I substitute “mental illness” for all instances of historical violence just to see if it still makes sense. The results are… morbidly amusing? “The Troubles were a period of mass mental illness in Northern Ireland in the 1970s and 1980s… the Bloody Sunday shootings radicalized Irish nationalist youths and, in unrelated news, totally coincidentally, a bunch of them came down with mental illnesses and joined paramilitary groups” uh whaaaat.

  159. moarscienceplz says

    @#167
    Is that aimed at me? The Troubles were the result of centuries of sectarianism and racism. I certainly don’t think “mental illness” was a factor in any of it.

  160. says

    moarscienceplz:
    I want to point out that I’m not anything approaching an expert on othering (if there is a such thing). Everything I’ve mentioned is stuff I’ve read or worked out on my own. Most likely, there are others with greater insight than myself (who can probably explain it better than I can).

    But, our society does othering all the time. Isn’t declaring someone a Sex Offender (usually for life) a form of othering? In California, a convicted felon can never own a gun, even if it was a non-violent felony. They are permanently relegated to a different class of person. (and no I am NOT advocating for this to be changed.) Now, I’m not completely sure about Sex Offenders, but I don’t think anyone classifies felons as inherently mentally ill, but they are still never going to be allowed to be considered one of the ‘normal’ citizens of California. So, most people consider these to be justified otherings.

    I think the distinction between othering and your examples is that othering is rejecting others’ humanity based on their actions. Whereas declaring someone a Sex Offender-while it does group them into a certain category-doesn’t reject their humanity. It’s not a judgement call that says “proper human beings don’t do these things”. It’s declaring that someone is acting in a manner that is socially unacceptable and harmful to others and it is in the best interests of society at large to be aware of these people. If othering were involved in labeling Sex Offenders, it would be calling them monsters or referring to them as inhuman. I can see why there is confusion bc there is some similarity. I think one thing to ask yourself about othering is this: Am I asserting that the actions of this individual are so extreme that a normal human being* could not possibly have engaged in them? If you answer ‘no’ to the question, you’re not othering. If you answer ‘yes’, you are.

    *this phrase is part of the problem. What does it mean to be a “normal human being” (NHB)? If you’re not an NHB, what does that make you? Less than human? Some offshoot of humanity that is similar, but different in ways that allows one to rest easier at night knowing that NHBs are incapable of such actions?

    ____
    As I’ve thought more on this, I wonder if othering is a form of dehumanization. Is there a spectrum of dehumanization? People often treat spree murderers, rapists, or sex offenders as if they are not NHBs. Such a spectrum would also include white supremacists or misogynists. Hmmm…

  161. pharyngsd says

    lilandra

    What is up with this highly speculative crap? Where did anyone’s spouse come into this?

    Those were examples where certain behaviors, especially if they are chronic and inhibiting, are symptoms of mental illness. Normal “behaviors” can turn into “symptoms” when they prevent you from functioning normally. You can read the DSM V yourself, if you don’t mind paying for it, if you’re interested in how different behaviors are classified as symptoms.

    For example, everyone gets nervous from time to time. However, if you are so habitually nervous that you are afraid to leave your house, you are likely to be diagnosed with a mental illness. If you were to actually submit yourself to the screening tests, that is.

    Rodger was suicidal. That alone is enough to indicate some kind of mental illness.

    Now add in his narcissistic ravings about sex.

    Now add in homicidal violence toward his roommates.

    Now add in homicidal violence toward women.

    Now add in homicidal violence toward random men.

    Rodger exhibited some of the most deviant and antisocial behavior on the books. He essentially attempted to kill anyone he felt needed killing. It doesn’t make the behavior any less symptomatic of a mental illness because some of his feelings were driven by a powerful misogyny. I’m quite confident that he would have tested positive for some kind of mental illness as detailed in the DSM V, had he been tested. That’s all I’m saying.

  162. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As I’ve thought more on this, I wonder if othering is a form of dehumanization.

    It is. It is a way of saying we don’t need to change anything, as whoever did bad wasn’t human. Instead of acknowledging the humanity of those who did bad, and trying to implement changes, like sensitivity training in school, to educate males away from misogyny and rape.

  163. says

    You can read the DSM V yourself, if you don’t mind paying for it, if you’re interested in how different behaviors are classified as symptoms.

    I don’t think this is a helpful thing for non professionals to do (at least in terms of discussion like this). Far too many people think that reading the DSM V somehow gives them the authority and/or understanding to labels others as mentally ill. One does not get automatic credentials and/or become a professional just from reading the DSM V.

  164. says

    They’re aimed at the general idea expressed by multiple people over the course of this thread that only mentally ill people shoot people and whatever hatreds they express as their motivations are also just because they’re mentally ill.

    The Troubles, along with most violence you run across when reading anything about history, is indeed the result of a bunch of stuff that happened previously to it. Misogynistic violence–of which Roger’s spree shooting is a particularly egregious example but which is by no measure rare–is the result of millennia of patriarchy and sexual entitlement. Rogers was smack in the middle of a subculture that’s arisen as a particularly toxic strain of backlash to any mitigation of patriarchy. Something like this shooting was practically inevitable, and that’s what the “but mental illness” crowd seems to be trying to avoid facing.

  165. says

    pharngsd:

    I’m quite confident that he would have tested positive for some kind of mental illness as detailed in the DSM V, had he been tested. That’s all I’m saying.

    I think people figured that out a while back. The problem is that there’s no reason to think that. But you don’t seem concerned with accepting the possibility that you’re othering, and that such dehumanization is not helpful (as it doesn’t address the underlying social problems that led to ER’s actions).
    In the absence of evidence that Elliot Rodger was mentally ill and that said mental illness was a contributing factor to his killing spree speculating on his mental health is not just pointless, but it demonizes people who are mentally ill.

  166. says

    Blar. That last message of mine is in response to @168, and the first word should be “It’s”, not “They’re”, and I should have gone to bed instead of deciding to join the discussion now.

  167. says

    thecynicalromantic:

    {…} I should have gone to bed instead of deciding to join the discussion now.

    Hey, I’m glad you opted to comment. I think your exercise of replacing violence with mental illness was insightful.

  168. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    pharyngsd

    Were the soldiers who committed the My Lai massacre mentally ill? They gunned down innocent women, men, children, and babies. They gang-raped and mutilated the bodies of several women. They were steeped in a hatred of the Vietnamese, just the same as ER was towards women. What is the difference between those soldiers and ER?

  169. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Rodger was suicidal. That alone is enough to indicate some kind of mental illness.

    Now add in his narcissistic ravings about sex.

    And without a citation, this is nothing but bullshit from you…No citation, it isn’t a mental illness.

  170. chigau (違う) says

    If you actually believe that merely reading the DSM V qualifies you to make diagnoses,
    you must wonder why anyone would bother with all that schooling and practice under the supervision of existing professionals.

  171. chigau (違う) says

    pharyngsd

    Rodger was suicidal. That alone is enough to indicate some kind of mental illness.

    Not even wrong.

  172. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    pharyngsd,
    I’ve noticed two types fail to give or even attempt citations when repeatedly challenged to do so. Tone trolls and MRA/PUA fuckwits. What’s your excuse? I suspect the latter.

  173. says

    Nerd:

    I’ve noticed two types fail to give or even attempt citations when repeatedly challenged to do so. Tone trolls and MRA/PUA fuckwits. What’s your excuse? I suspect the latter.

    I think you’re a little off the mark here. While I agree with you that pharyngsd is wrong in their labeling of ER as mentally ill, I don’t think it’s bc they are a tone troll or an MRA/PUA. What they’ve said doesn’t fit so neatly into those categories. Pharyngsd is downplaying the role of misogyny (to the extent that I’m not sure what role-and to what extent-they think misogyny played in ER’s actions), so it could be that MRA/PUA bullshit is at play here to some degree. But to what extent (if at all), I am uncertain. I don’t know what their motivation is, if indeed there is only one, but I think denialism plays a role. Perhaps also a lack of understanding of the extent to which cultural influences can affect us all. I’d also think that they display a layperson’s MISunderstanding of mental illness. All that said, I am speculating here, but I think based on pharyngsd’s comments, that speculation is closer to the truth than your suspicions. But I could be wrong.

  174. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    I _can_ make diagnoses of people based on the strength of the evidence: Hitler, for instance, almost certainly had Asperger’s.

    I’m reminded of that guy who insisted he was a REAL feminist because he (claimed to have) felt men should be exterminated to leave a “truly equal” society. And who admitted to be making it all up., at the end Just saying.

  175. Gerard O says

    Thank you to the commenters who took the time to read my comments rather others’ caricatures of them (even those who think that telling someone to “fuck off” is a winning ploy).
    I made a verifiable and falsifiable claim about Elliot Rodger, and have given the names of three high-profile autism/Asperger’s experts who I believe would corroborate this claim. Anybody who wants to test this can do so if they wish.
    I would also like to point out that I never claimed a direct link between Rodger’s neurological condition and the Isla Vista killings, though I concede a lack of clarity on my part could have contributed to this error.
    I will leave any further discussion of Hitler and other historical figures to a future edition of ‘Thunderdome’.

  176. says

    Gerard O:

    Thank you to the commenters who took the time to read my comments rather others’ caricatures of them (even those who think that telling someone to “fuck off” is a winning ploy).

    It’s not meant to win an argument. It’s not meant to replace an argument. Most often it’s stated for the simple reason that a commenter wishes someone (like you, in this case) would go elsewhere with your stupidity.

    I made a verifiable and falsifiable claim about Elliot Rodger, and have given the names of three high-profile autism/Asperger’s experts who I believe would corroborate this claim. Anybody who wants to test this can do so if they wish.

    Unless they have access to his medical history, no, they cannot determine his mental health. All they can do is speculate. And I’ve explained why that’s not only UNhelpful, but detrimental to others. But you don’t care about that.
    Also, these “experts”, if they truly are that, should know not to make such claims about people who are a) not their patients and b) dead. If anyone were to do that, it would be unprofessional. You seem to have a low opinion of mental health professionals.

    I would also like to point out that I never claimed a direct link between Rodger’s neurological condition and the Isla Vista killings, though I concede a lack of clarity on my part could have contributed to this error.

    Now this just sounds like you’re being dishonest. What other point could you have in bringing up the possibility that ER had a mental illness, if not to draw a link between his actions and said ill defined mental illness? What does that accomplish? How does it illuminate his actions? How does it allow us to understand why he went on his rampage? What information does it provide us in the hopes of preventing future murderous rampages by others?
    You claimed Hitler almost certainly had Asperger’s. You made an armchair diagnosis, despite your lack of qualifications to do so (having a mental illness does not qualify one to diagnose others) about the mental health of a dead person in an attempt to…what? Win points? Just Express Stupidity Today? What point does it serve to say Hitler had a mental illness, if not to draw a causal link between his illness and his actions?

  177. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I made a verifiable and falsifiable claim about Elliot Rodger, and have given the names of three high-profile autism/Asperger’s experts who I believe would corroborate this claim. Anybody who wants to test this can do so if they wish.

    This strikes you as competent argumentation, does it? “I have X condition and Elliot Rodger described symptoms which strike me as familiar, therefor I’m nearly certain he also has X condition. Furthermore, here are the names of some experts on X condition who I believe would agree with me. Because reasons.”

  178. says

    It’s a misleading “verifiable/falsifiable” claim. None of us has access to ER’s medical history, so we don’t know if he even had a mental illness. Even if 3 professionals agreed with Gerard O, that still means zilch.

  179. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Well yeah, it’s a red herring and it’s not really verifiable/falsifiable because I sincerely doubt any of them, even if they did agree, would care to respond if I sent an email that read “Hi, I’m some rando on the internet. Some other rando on the internet thinks Elliot Rodger was autistic. What do you think?”

  180. Gerard O says

    Given that my paroxysms of laughter are making it hard for me to keep typing I’m going to leave this till the next ‘Thunderdome’. Also, stop saying that autism/AS is a mental illness, as has been explained earlier.

  181. mickll says

    @gingerbaker

    “Killing people at random because of irrational delusional thinking is the fracking example par excellence of mental illness.”

    Which mental illness? Also, if someone writes a manifesto describing in intricate detail the victims they wish to target then this isn’t killing at random!

    Also, I always thought the burden of proof was on a claimant to prove a claim. If you are claiming that Rogers did what he did because of a a mental illness then it’s up to you to provide evidence for that claim.

    Presciently claiming what any mental health professional might say, in your opinion, is not evidence!

  182. chigau (違う) says

    Gerard O #189
    The Thunderdome is always open.
    Don’t be “shy”, just jump in.
    We’re waiting.

  183. Louis says

    Well I, for one, AM DISAPPOINT!

    I did a comment with links and references and everything, two I think, that explained all this with only mild sarcasm and it doesn’t seem to have cured the internet of stupid.

    I think I’m going to take off and nuke the site from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.

    Louis

  184. pharyngsd says

    mickll

    Which mental illness?

    Some combination of depression (since he had a death wish) and perhaps a Narcissistic Personality Disorder would be a good guess.

    mickll

    Also, I always thought the burden of proof was on a claimant to prove a claim.

    If someone can be thought misogynistic because they have proclaimed a hatred for women, how come they can’t be thought of as depressed if they proclaim a death wish?

    mickll

    Also, if someone writes a manifesto describing in intricate detail the victims they wish to target then this isn’t killing at random!

    From http://www.latimes.com/local/crime/la-me-isla-vista-roommates-20140621-story.html#page=1

    Before he exacted his revenge, Elliot Rodger wrote extensively about the people he hated for rejecting him: Popular men. Beautiful women. People who partied hard.

    James Hong, David Wang and George Chen were not those people. They just happened to spend time in the same apartment as Rodger.

    The 4th male victim, who was inside a deli, was definitely selected at random. While Rodger’s detailed the “type” of people he hated, with the exception of his roommates, the actual victims were not targeted by name.

  185. chigau (違う) says

    misogyny actually means hatred of women.
    depression does not actually mean death-wish.

  186. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yawn, not one citation to mental illness, describing the symptom, etc., so we can all be on the same page.

    If someone can be thought misogynistic because they have proclaimed a hatred for women, how come they can’t be thought of as depressed if they proclaim a death wish?

    How come you diagnose from stupidity, instead of listening to real professionals? Who the fuck are you to make the diagnosis on anybody’s state of mind? Where the fuck is your training? That is why what you are doing is presumptuous and fuckwitted. You are attempting to excuse the misogyny. Stop doing that.

  187. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd @ 193

    Some combination of depression (since he had a death wish) and perhaps a Narcissistic Personality Disorder would be a good guess.

    1) Your haphazard guesses are so much hot air and, at the risk of sounding like Nerd, dismissed as such.
    2) “Personality disorder” and “mental illness” are not interchangeable terms.

    If someone can be thought misogynistic because they have proclaimed a hatred for women, how come they can’t be thought of as depressed if they proclaim a death wish?

    Because words mean things, you ignorant fuck. “Depressed” in the context of mental illness does not mean “has a death wish.” You’re like a fucking creationist equivocating with the word “theory.” You’re claiming a medical diagnosis but you’re basing it on colloquial usage of the words.

  188. says

    One thing I’ve learned from these threads: maybe we should give the ones who scream “mental illness!” what they want, and declare misogyny an official mental disease, with sexism as an early symptom of incipient disorder, requiring immediate hospitalization and treatment.

    There. Problem solved.

    Of course, I think we’re going to have to lock up half the commenters on YouTube, but I think we can cope by releasing everyone in prison for using marijuana. I know which group I’d rather live with.

  189. says

    PZ:

    Of course, I think we’re going to have to lock up half the commenters on YouTube, but I think we can cope by releasing everyone in prison for using marijuana. I know which group I’d rather live with.

    Aye, me too.

  190. pharyngsd says

    chigau

    depression does not actually mean death-wish.

    It’s not that depression = death wish. It’s that death wish = depression. Having a death wish is a symptom of extreme depression.

    In other words, if you have a death wish, you are *highly* likely to be classified as suffering from some kind of mental illness, most likely depression, should you agree to be tested.

    His misogyny does not explain the brutal murder of his three male roommates.
    His misogyny does not explain the murder of an innocent male victim in a deli.
    His misogyny does not explain his death wish.

    Some kind of mental illness *does* explain all of that. It’s a much better explanation than simply “Misogyny Gone Wild.”

  191. pharyngsd says

    PZMeyers

    One thing I’ve learned from these threads: maybe we should give the ones who scream “mental illness!” what they want, and declare misogyny an official mental disease, with sexism as an early symptom of incipient disorder, requiring immediate hospitalization and treatment.

    That’s not what I want. You won’t find misogyny as a clinical diagnosis in the DSM-V. For good reason. Misogyny is not a mental illness.

    However, homicidal rampages especially when accompanied by a death wish, *are* an indicator of mental illness. Whether the perpetrator also happens to be misogynistic, or racist, or sexist, or “insert your favorite intolerant viewpoint here,” is not really a factor in their mental health. (As “mental health” is defined by the DSM-V.)

  192. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    His misogyny does not explain the brutal murder of his three male roommates.

    He killed them to secure the apartment for himself so that he could torture and murder people who were either a) women who wouldn’t fuck him or b) men who were fucking the women who wouldn’t fuck him and so that they wouldn’t stop him from getting to the sorority house full of women he planned to kill because they wouldn’t fuck him.

    His misogyny does not explain the murder of an innocent male victim in a deli.

    He killed whoever he could because he was angry at a world that was full of women who wouldn’t fuck him.

    His misogyny does not explain his death wish.

    He wanted to die because continuing to exist in a world full of women who wouldn’t fuck him had become too much for him to bear.

    We know this because he fucking said so

  193. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Some kind of mental illness *does* explain all of that.

    “Some kind of mental illness” explains fuck all.

  194. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Having a death wish is a symptom of extreme depression.

    Even if it’s a symptom of depression, depression is not the only condition under which suicidal ideation occurs.

    When you have a fact which is equally consistent with multiple different explanations, that fact is not actually evidence for any of them.

  195. pharyngsd says

    Seven of mine

    He killed them to secure the apartment for himself so that he could torture and murder people who were either a) women who wouldn’t fuck him or b) men who were fucking the women who wouldn’t fuck him and so that they wouldn’t stop him from getting to the sorority house full of women he planned to kill because they wouldn’t fuck him.

    How would you describe the mental state of someone that is capable of murdering those people for those reasons?

    Would you say he is a psychopath? Perhaps an extreme narcissist?

    Is there any definition of “normal mental health” that accepts his reasoning for those three murders?

    Now what about his death wish? What definition of “normal mental health” does a death wish fall under?

    Finally, what definition of “normal mental health” accepts misogyny as a rational basis for a homicidal rampage?

    Seven of Mine

    Even if it’s a symptom of depression, depression is not the only condition under which suicidal ideation occurs.

    Agreed. I’ve said numerous times that I don’t know what his actual diagnosis would be. But one can make an educated guess, which is all I’ve done.

    I’m simply convinced that he *would* have tested positive for some kind of mental illness. Some kind of personality disorder makes sense because he didn’t appear to be acutely psychotic. E.g. He wasn’t hearing voices (as far as we know), he didn’t have delusions (as far as we know), his thoughts were basically coherent, although reprehensible. (Incidentally, when I say “coherent” I don’t mean “rational.” If you’ve ever seen a person in an acute psychotic episode that was incoherent, their thoughts are so disordered that they can’t even put two logically connected sentences together. It’s horrible.)

  196. pharyngsd says

    Seven of Mine

    When you have a fact which is equally consistent with multiple different explanations, that fact is not actually evidence for any of them.

    Just because you can’t pinpoint a diagnosis doesn’t mean that you don’t know that a person is suffering from a disease.

    It happens in medicine all the time. A person exhibits “flu like symptoms.” Do they have the flu? Or is it food poisoning? Perhaps indigestion? Establishing the diagnosis requires testing. That doesn’t mean you can’t accept the notion that the person is sick until the diagnosis is complete.

  197. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    pharyngsd @ 204

    what definition of “normal mental health” accepts misogyny as a rational basis for a homicidal rampage?

    The kind that says that the soldiers who engaged in the My Lai massacre because of their extreme hatred of the Vietnamese arent mentally ill.

    Would you please stop trying to shove what humans do once they have sufficiently dehumanized their “enemies” into the mentally ill category.

  198. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    His misogyny does not explain his death wish.

    Some kind of mental illness *does* explain all of that. It’s a much better explanation than simply “Misogyny Gone Wild.”

    Considering you provide zero definitions of mental illness, other than anything to avoid it being rampant misogyny, mental illness explains nothing. Too vague to be useful.
    Why must it be mental illness? Answer that question. I suspect the answer is you can’t stand it being rampant misogyny.

    Just because you can’t pinpoint a diagnosis doesn’t mean that you don’t know that a person is suffering from a disease.

    Actually, it can. You either pinpoint a diagnosis, or shut the fuck up. Your vague fuckwittery is nothing but bullshit.

  199. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd @ 204

    How would you describe the mental state of someone that is capable of murdering those people for those reasons?

    I’ve answered this same inane question from you before. I wouldn’t presume to describe it because a) I’ve never met him, b) he’s dead and, c) I’m not qualified.

    Would you say he is a psychopath? Perhaps an extreme narcissist?

    His manuscript and videos indicate qualities that could be those things. However, it’s not useful to speculate.

    Is there any definition of “normal mental health” that accepts his reasoning for those three murders?

    You don’t have to be mentally ill to believe demonstrably false things. See: everyone who believes in a religion. All it takes is one bad fact and someone who is entirely mentally healthy and reasoning 100% correctly can end up with a completely FUBARed belief system.

    Now what about his death wish? What definition of “normal mental health” does a death wish fall under?

    For what must be at least the millionth time, nobody is arguing that he is 100% mentally healthy. What we’re trying to beat into your seemingly impenetrable skull is that a) we’re not qualified to judge anb b) it’s not only not useful but actually harmful to speculate.

    Finally, what definition of “normal mental health” accepts misogyny as a rational basis for a homicidal rampage?

    This question is incoherent. You don’t have to be mentally ill to be a misogynist or to kill people. Mental illness and irrationality do not entail each other. Misogyny is not irrational within the context of a culture that objectifies and dehumanizes women and teaches men that they’re owed time, attention and sex from them. “Repugnant” and “irrational” are not synonyms. Again, you can reason entirely correctly from within a framework built on a bad idea. Your conclusions will be all kinds of fucked up but they will not necessarily be irrational.

    Agreed. I’ve said numerous times that I don’t know what his actual diagnosis would be. But one can make an educated guess, which is all I’ve done.

    We know full well that’s all you’ve done. What we’re trying to tell you is that it’s an utterly pointless and even harmful exercise.

    I’m simply convinced that he *would* have tested positive for some kind of mental illness.

    I’m convinced that Hogwarts is real and that I have mountains of galleons in a vault at Gringotts. If I go to Charing Cross Road in London, will I find a pub called the Leaky Cauldron with a magic brick in the wall behind it that, when I tap it just so with my wand, will open an passage into Diagon Alley?

    You may have gathered from the previous paragraph that I don’t consider “I am convinced” to be a compelling argument for anything other than that, you, personally are convinced of something.

  200. pharyngsd says

    Seven of Mine

    His manuscript and videos indicate qualities that could be those things.

    Thank you for agreeing with me.

    You don’t have to be mentally ill to be a misogynist or to kill people.

    Duh.

    Try to get this: we’re not talking about generalities here. We are discussing a specific homicidal rampage with very specific behavioral characteristics and personal testimonies.

    However, it’s not useful to speculate.

    To each his own, dude. Or do you have a citation that proves your claim?

  201. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd @209

    Thank you for agreeing with me.

    I wasn’t, you dishonest fuck.

    Here is your question:

    Would you say he is a psychopath? Perhaps an extreme narcissist?

    I did not answer “yes” to the question of “would I say he is….” “Could be” and “is” are not synonymous, shitwit.

    We are discussing a specific homicidal rampage with very specific behavioral characteristics and personal testimonies.

    None of which leads to a firm conclusion as evidenced not least by the fact that you’re still here waffling about “some sort of mental illness.” “Maybe this, maybe that,” “educated guesses,” blah, blah, fucking blah.

    To each his own, dude.

    I’m not a dude. Don’t assume people’s gender.

    Or do you have a citation that proves your claim?

    You’re the one making the claim that he’s mentally ill. Explain how it’s useful to bring it up. My, and others’, contention is that “mentally ill” is too vague a term to actually explain anything. You’ve admitted multiple times that you’re just tossing out guesses.

  202. pharyngsd says

    Nerd

    Actually, it can. You either pinpoint a diagnosis, or shut the fuck up.

    Oh man! Given your vulgar responses, it’s easy to ignore you, but *that* takes the cake. Your approach to medicine is literally deadly.

    Doctor: Well, you have a few symptoms that could be suggestive of a number of disorders. The tests we’ve performed so far are inconclusive. However, your blood pressure is dangerously low, so we’re going to give you something to raise your…
    Patient: Shut the fuck up!

    Absolutely classic…

  203. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    The last few lines of 210 should read:

    pharyngsd

    Or do you have a citation that proves your claim?

    You’re the one making the claim that he’s mentally ill. Explain how it’s useful to bring it up. My, and others’, contention is that “mentally ill” is too vague a term to actually explain anything. You’ve admitted multiple times that you’re just tossing out guesses.

  204. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Oh man! Given your vulgar responses, it’s easy to ignore you, but *that* takes the cake. Your approach to medicine is literally deadly.

    You are not a doctor. If you can’t point to a specific diagnosis, you’re doing nothing but blowing hot air.

  205. Louis says

    Vulgarity: Doesn’t kill people.

    Mental health stigma: Kills people.

    Hmmm.

    Nah. I got nothing.

    Louis

  206. says

    pharyngsd:

    It happens in medicine all the time. A person exhibits “flu like symptoms.” Do they have the flu? Or is it food poisoning? Perhaps indigestion? Establishing the diagnosis requires testing […]

    which is done by a qualified professional. Not online by some random person on the internet, and not without examining the subject in person. Same as diagnosing a mental illness.

  207. says

    pharyngsd:

    Or do you have a citation that proves your claim?

    A citation to prove that it’s not helpful to speculate about whether or not a dead person was mentally ill?
    I’m not sure what kind of citation that would be, but people in this thread (myself included) have explained why it’s not helpful to speculate. It doesn’t seem like you’re reading the responses you’ve been given.

    Oh man! Given your vulgar responses, it’s easy to ignore you, but *that* takes the cake.

    I take it back. Nerd was right, at least in part. You’re a tone troll, unable to pay attention to the substance of a comment, and whining about coarse words. Yer a shitwit all right.

    Doctor: Well, you have a few symptoms that could be suggestive of a number of disorders. The tests we’ve performed so far are inconclusive. However, your blood pressure is dangerously low, so we’re going to give you something to raise your…
    Patient: Shut the fuck up!

    Nerd was not referring to a qualified medical professional discussing these symptoms with their patient.
    He was talking about *you*. He’s saying *you* need to pinpoint a diagnosis or STFU. You are not qualified to make any statements about the mental health of a dead person whom you never met (even *if* you’re a qualified mental health professional).

  208. Louis says

    Tony!

    Literally NOBODY has ever given a reference in any thread on this subject. Nor have they suggested a book specifically about this series of phenomena that is in no way available easily and cheaply from a massive tax dodging multinational on line book company and that is most certainly not called “Shunned” by Graham Thornicroft.

    I want it absolutely clear that no one has done that. Nor would they mention it. Or be sarcastic about it, not to you, but in the presence of some wilful dunderhead who is clearly just being a rampaging anal polyp.

    ;-)

    Louis

  209. says

    Louis:

    Or be sarcastic about it, not to you, but in the presence of some wilful dunderhead who is clearly just being a rampaging anal polyp.

    My life would be so empty without the sparkling Louis wit that I’ve come to love.
    I do have to mention that we’ve a new word around here: ignorANUS. It works quite nicely in place of ‘rampaging anal polyp’ (although now I’m imagining a movie about rampaging anal polyps, in the same vein as Attack of the Killer Tomatoes)

  210. pharyngsd says

    Tony

    A citation to prove that it’s not helpful to speculate about whether or not a dead person was mentally ill? I’m not sure what kind of citation that would be, but people in this thread (myself included) have explained why it’s not helpful to speculate.

    Huh. Interesting. So you can’t think of a reason why you need to come up with a citation to refute a dubious (at best) claim? I should just take your word (or the word of other people in this thread) that it’s not helpful?

    Well then I recommend that you take my word for it that a death wish leading to a suicidal rampage is indicative of mental illness. If you don’t want to take my word for it, why don’t you ask the next 10 people you meet on the street whether or not a death wish leading to a suicidal rampage in which 6 people are murdered and many others wounded is indicative of mental illness?

    Next, you ask them whether or not murdering your roommates because you don’t like them (for whatever reason) is indicative of mental illness.

    Next, you ask them whether or not shooting strangers with a high powered rifle because you don’t like them (for whatever reason) is indicative of mental illness.

    Next find a whole new group of people and ask them if a suicidal death wish leading to a homicidal rampage *and* murdering your roommates because you don’t like them *and* shooting strangers with a high powered rifle because you don’t like them is indicative of some kind of mental illness.

    Let me know what you discover.

  211. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd, you seem to be laboring under the delusion that we give a shit what random assholes think is indicative of mental illness. We care what qualified professionals think is indicative of mental illness.

  212. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    Pharyngsd

    Would you consider the soldiers who committed the My Lai massacre mentally ill?

    Rodgers reads to me like someone who is living in world that is out to get them. Just like the soldiers thought of those Vietnamese living in My Lai. He has dehumanized women and the men who they are around to the point where killing them is perfectly ok, just like the soldiers did. His roommates counted among those men since they got girlfriends. The sorority counted as a gathering spot for his enemies, just like those soldiers and the homes of the Vietnamese. His “death wish” was the kind of thing that soldiers have when surrounded by the enemy with no way out, they are going to take out as many as they can before they die. You are covering over details and nuance that doesnt fit your preconceived notion of Rodgers being one of the Other, the things that the clearly broken are, the things that arent human.

  213. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I should just take your word (or the word of other people in this thread) that it’s not helpful?

    Given that you have yet to explain why it is helpful, yes, you should.

  214. Louis says

    Pharyngsd,

    All the information and references you could want are here.

    I even linked to a few references here and here.

    Actual links, to the actual literature and an actual book by an actual expert. All pertaining to your desire for references and by no means exhaustive, merely an eclectic beginning.

    Louis

  215. John Horstman says

    It’s late in the thread to do so, but thanks to social constructivist theories of meaning-making (especially semiotics), I actually can definitively say that Adolph Hitler did not suffer from Asperger syndrome, as it was only formalized in 1981, well after he no longer existed. It may well be the case that someone alive today who has symptoms similar to those of Adolph Hitler might be described as having Asperger syndrome, but becasue things like classification schemata are dependent on historical and cultural context to have meaning, it is flatly incorrect to project a current schema onto a historical period.

    Oh, and suicide (or suicidal behavior) doesn’t actually suggest insanity/mental illness; that’s only true if you assume that wanting to exist as long as possible under any and all circumstances is a universal human value*, which it very much is not. The most obvious and widespread cases when it is not are instances of martyrdom – when one opts to undertake some probably-lethal action for the sake of other people or an ideology (which is often in service of other people, at least as far as the martyr is concerned) e.g. a parent putting zirself in danger to save a child, a bodyguard taking a bullet for someone ze thinks is important, a soldier putting zirself in danger (even certain death; I would include most suicide bombers, for example, in this category) for the sake of a country or the people who live there, people in circumstances with limited resources killing themselves to allow others access to the resources (often family members), etc. People in interminable pain might also rationally and sanely choose to end their lives, as simply existing is torture (I’d include some people with diagnosed mental illnesses in this category, if their illnesses have proved unresponsive to the available treatments and make their continued existence torturous – the mental illness in these cases creates an environment that is torturous, but the actual decision to end one’s existence is as reasonable and rational a response to such an unchangeable environment as someone suffering intense physical pain; people who are bullied to death, who kill themselves becasue they are subject to an environment in which they are constantly harassed and from which they cannot escape – possibly due to lack of resources, as with teens and younger children, possibly due to the environment being universal, as with anyone facing systemic oppression – also belong here). A desire to continue to exist is not a universal feature of human beings – we likely have a strong biological predisposition (though after reproductive age, the evolutionary pressures would be lessened, and after about double the reproductive age – at which point one’s offspring could themselves be reproducing – they would be mostly gone), but this is clearly at least mediated if not necessarily inculcated at least in part by social value systems. A quick heuristic: if suicide avoidance were truly a universal or essential trait (even if we restrict the universality or essentialism to “sane people”), there would never have been a reason for any religion (or legal system, for that matter) to ban it. Yet, many have.

    *And even that presupposes that everyone thinks death is the end of existence, which one hell of a lot of people do not, at least not consciously, though the behaviors of many people who claim to believe in an afterlife suggest they have actually internalized an understanding of death as the end of one’s existence.

  216. pharyngsd says

    Louis

    All the information and references you could want are here.

    The issue at hand is not whether there is a stigma surrounding mental illness. If you wanted to discuss it, you would find me a fierce advocate for the mentally ill. Not only for the proper treatment of mental illnesses, bit for the eradication of the stigmas surrounding mental illness.

    Many people are confused by their own mental illness and find it difficult to seek proper treatment (much less discuss it with their friends) because of that stigma. (Please don’t ask me for a citation, it’s just an opinion I hold.) Which is too bad, because many acute psychotic episodes give out warning signs, and early treatment of psychotic symptoms before they reach the acute/chronic stage can make a world of difference in the prognosis. (If you want a citation for that, here you go: http://www.psycontent.com/content/b48674u77783jg80/)

    I think Rodger’s was mentally ill because of his actions and his professed desire to die. It’s just obvious to me that he would fit into a DSM-V classification, which is the only generally accepted authority we have for establishing a diagnosis. Which classification, I’m not sure. But just like I know that my daughter is physically ill if she has a fever of 103, I also know that she’s mentally ill if she proclaims a desire to kill herself in a murderous rampage. (By “know” I mean, “Convinced of that fact unless shown otherwise.”)

    The other issue at hand is whether or not Rad (remember Rad’s video? That’s what started this whole discussion) was correct in her assessment of Jaclyn Glen’s comments on the matter. I think Rad gets it wrong when she says that someone must be declared “legally insane” to be considered mentally ill. Or that “legally insane” is the standard for determining whether or not someone is mentally ill. One can know the difference between right and wrong and still be mentally ill. People with mental illnesses are incarcerated in the penal system (many of them unjustly so) all the time.

    Now, it’s unfortunate that the actions of a single sick individual can be generalized across an entire population, but I don’t think you can hold me responsible for that. I’m not addressing mental illness in general. I’m addressing it in the context of Rodger’s actions on that fateful day and his prior suicidal ideation. And I’m not addressing it in the context of his misogyny at all. Make sense?

  217. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    It’s just obvious to me that he would fit into a DSM-V classification, which is the only generally accepted authority we have for establishing a diagnosis. Which classification, I’m not sure.

    If it’s so obvious to you that he would fit into some classification, why is it simultaneously so difficult for you to settle on which one. You’re talking out of both sides of your mouth.

    I think Rad gets it wrong when she says that someone must be declared “legally insane” to be considered mentally ill. Or that “legally insane” is the standard for determining whether or not someone is mentally ill.

    Please quote what Rad said that made you think she meant anything like this. She was referring to Glenn using “insane,” “mentally ill,” and “mentally unstable” interchangeably. Her point was that the term “insane really has no clinical relevance anymore. You’re either using it colloquially or in the very narrow legal sense which very probably doesn’t apply to Rodger since he explicitly talks about planning his murders to avoid capture as long as possible.

  218. chigau (違う) says

    I think that anyone who thinks they can make a diagnosis because they read a book, is kinda nutty.

  219. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    If it’s so obvious to you that he would fit into some classification, why is it simultaneously so difficult for you to settle on which one.

    For the same reason I wouldn’t know what is causing my daughter to have a fever of 103. Is it the flu? Appendicitis? Tooth infection?

    Having said that, I have stated previously that he probably suffered from a personality disorder. Specifically, “Narcissistic Personality Disorder.” But it’s just a guess mostly because it came up in the conversation about that murderer in Norway. (Who had a racist, but not misogynistic manifesto.)

    His suicidal ideation is definitely indicative of depression or some other illness. I have said that several times. It might not be the kind of depression you are familiar with, but I have known many people suffering from mental illness (specific diagnosis as yet undetermined) that expressed a desire to die and were incarcerated in a psychiatric hospital under the provisions of California Statute 5150, for that reason alone.

    Seven

    Please quote what Rad said that made you think she meant anything like this.

    It starts at about 4:53. At some point she categorically states that Rodger’s was not insane, she could tell from his blog posts, etc. She uses the legal definition of insanity to bolster her argument.

  220. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Having said that, I have stated previously that he probably suffered from a personality disord

    Who the fuck cares what an abject idjit, the only kind who makes diagnoses they are unfit to make, thinks about anything? Show us you have learned to think and present real evidence.

  221. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    However, homicidal rampages especially when accompanied by a death wish, *are* an indicator of mental illness.

    Ci-fucking-tation needed. Unevidenced claim, dismissed without evidence. The evidence required is a link to proper book, etc. that accurately describes mental illness, exactly in the terms you are using. Why is this such a hard concept? It all goes back to definitions.

    Creation theory, a guess, an attempt to presuppositionally explain base on a book of mythology/fiction.

    Theory of evolution, (from Wiki)

    A scientific theory is a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that is acquired through the scientific method, and repeatedly confirmed through observation and experimentation.[1][2] As with most (if not all) forms of scientific knowledge, scientific theories are inductive in nature and aim for predictive power and explanatory force. [3][4]

    These types of differences is why you have need to accurately make and keep to standard definitions.

  222. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    His suicidal ideation is definitely indicative of depression or some other illness. I have said that several times.

    It is indicative of nothing other than your presuppositional wish that it IS something. Until you show the link to the actual professional health care literature, your inane definitions are just dismissed as irrelevant, just like Gingerbaker’s presuppositional definitions were.
    Why can’t you understand the problem is that you are trying for a conclusion, without being well grounded on what the scientific definitions are, and how to use them. Which is why people keep telling you citation needed.

  223. says

    pharyngsd:

    So you can’t think of a reason why you need to come up with a citation to refute a dubious (at best) claim? I should just take your word (or the word of other people in this thread) that it’s not helpful?

    Ah, I had a feeling this would be something that would finally elicit a response from you (as you seem to respond to the points made by everyone else). Of course you misunderstood what I said.
    I didn’t say I couldn’t think of a reason to need a citation, I said I wasn’t sure what kind of citation that would be.
    Learn to read for comprehension shit for brains.

  224. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    But it’s just a guess mostly because it came up in the conversation about that murderer in Norway.

    Do you even read this shit before you hit enter? You’re guessing at NPD because you heard the disorder mentioned in reference to someone else who killed lots of people and had a manifesto? How the fuck is this a useful thing to do?

    It starts at about 4:53. At some point she categorically states that Rodger’s was not insane, she could tell from his blog posts, etc. She uses the legal definition of insanity to bolster her argument.

    Her argument, you quivering pile of oblivious ignorance, is that he’s not legally insane. Of course she uses the legal definition of insanity to make that case. The point, which I explained and which you ignored, is that Glenn was using the term “insane” interchangeably with “mentally ill. “Insane” has no clinical relevance anymore and, even when it did, was not interchangeable with “mentally ill.” Applying the term “insane” to Rodger is meaningless because the word has no clinical meaning and Rodger doesn’t fit the legal definition. That was Rad’s point.

  225. says

    pharyngsd @220:
    Also, I’m not going to ask a bunch of random people their opinions on what they think on this subject. They’re not relevant authorities on the subject of mental illnesses and neither are you. Your opinion, and their’s doesn’t amount to a mound of elephant dung.
    The opinions of qualified mental health officials are marginally more informed by virtue of their skills, but even that is still speculation (albeit better informed speculation than what you offer). As we’ve been saying, this speculation doesn’t help us understand what, if any mental health issues ER had. Nor does it give us any knowledge of what to do to prevent murderous rampages from occurring in the future (since we don’t know if he had a mental illness, nor do we know what that illness was, nor do we know if that illness was connected to his rampage-in essence we got a whole lotta nuthin’). *AND* we have the added bonus of demonizing people with mental illnesses by insinuating that there is something wrong with them-something that leads to murdering people.

    That’s why your speculation is worthless.

    Now explain to me how your speculation explains anything or is in any way able to inform a future course of action.

  226. says

    pharngsd:

    Having said that, I have stated previously that he probably suffered from a personality disorder. Specifically, “Narcissistic Personality Disorder.” But it’s just a guess mostly because it came up in the conversation about that murderer in Norway. (Who had a racist, but not misogynistic manifesto.)

    I’ll ask you the same question I’ve posed to others (and haven’t gotten an answer): what are your qualifications for making this determination (or for even making a diagnosis of mental illness in general)?
    Why do we have mental health professionals if any Jane, Tom, or pharyngsd can make mental health evaluations? Why go to a psychiatrist at all? Why not just phone YOU up and ask your opinion? I mean, clearly you’re just as qualified as someone who went to school and studied for years on this subject. Someone who has a degree in psychiatry. You somehow trump them. Someone should let CNN know that you’re an authority on the subject without actually being an authority on the subject. *AND* that you can diagnose a dead person based on having read the DSM V.
    Because that’s all it takes.

  227. pharyngsd says

    Tony!

    Why do we have mental health professionals if any Jane, Tom, or pharyngsd can make mental health evaluations?

    Why do we have doctors at all if Jane, Tom or pharyngsd can make medical evaluations? What medical qualifications do they have to determine that a child with a fever of 103 is sick?

    Tony!

    Are suicide bombers mentally ill?

    Although it wouldn’t come as a surprise to me to learn that some of them are, I think it depends on the suicide bomber, don’t you?

    Tony!

    Now explain to me how your speculation explains anything

    I’m not in the mood. Maybe if you said, “Pretty please with sugar on top.”

    BTW, in case you were wondering, random vulgarities and personal insults are not synonymous with “Pretty please with sugar on top.”

  228. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    What medical qualifications do they have to determine that a child with a fever of 103 is sick?

    It’s called degrees and experience to be able to why. You have no why. You can’t diagnose mental illness. You have no training. All you know it something is not right. It doesn’t make it wrong, just YOU don’t understand it. And your ignorant bullshit is dismissed.

    Although it wouldn’t come as a surprise to me to learn that some of them are, I think it depends on the suicide bomber, don’t you?

    They think what they are doing is helping something. Who gives a shit what you think, since you won’t even give a link to a defintion of mental illness. Your word alone is worth nothing if you won’t back it up with third party evidence….

    I’m not in the mood. Maybe if you said, “Pretty please with sugar on top.”

    Maybe if you shut the fuck up with your unevidnced and uneducated sophistry and fuckwittery, and supply the evidence to back your claims, you might not be dismissed….

    BTW, in case you were wondering, random vulgarities and personal insults are not synonymous with “Pretty please with sugar on top.”

    Tone trolls are the scum of the Earth fuckwit, lower than slime mold. Keep that in mind before you show more ignorance and arrogance that need to be lowered with swear words.

  229. pharyngsd says

    Nerd

    Tone trolls are the scum of the Earth fuckwit, lower than slime mold.

    Citation, please. Pretty please. With sugar on top.

    Incidentally, did you mean “Scum of the Earth Fuckwit,” implying that there are several types of “Scum of the Earth,” and “Fuckwit” being one particular type, or were you calling me a “fuckwit?” I’m currently developing a list of citations for the wiki entry on “Internet vulgarisms” and I want make sure it’s accurate. It would seem that while you may not be an expert on vulgarisms, you certainly use them a lot, and that should count for something, I suppose.

    Also, since you are capitalizing “Earth” as in the planet we are standing on as opposed to just “dirt,” shouldn’t “fuckwit” also be capitalized?

  230. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    Wow, pharyngsd, you devolved into being a petty little troll quickly. I get you need to try to preserve your ego somehow, but trolling isnt permitted here and will get you banned pretty quick.

    Also, you never answered my question and I did it all polite and civil too.

    Would you consider the soldiers who committed the My Lai massacre mentally ill?

  231. says

    Arawhon:

    Wow, pharyngsd, you devolved into being a petty little troll quickly.

    Yup. Now it’s like xe is so totally focused on coarse language that xe doesn’t attempt to engage the conversation. As if xe cannot realize that the insults pepper the arguments, rather than replace them. Ah well, I’d hoped pharyngsd would get around to answering your question, but I guess not. I also hoped xe would come to realize the harm in othering people, but such is not to be. Our little tone troll wanna be psychiatrist & doctor can fuck off officially.

  232. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Pharyngsd @105:

    First off, thank you for ignoring almost all of my comment and focusing on a small part of it. Well done.

    I’m not sure that anyone is making the claim that a person with a mental illness has a propensity for violence. I’m certainly not.

    But Rodger *did* perform mass murder justified irrationally and accompanied with suicidal ideation. It’s his behavior and thought processes that are suggestive of a mental illness, not some theory that all killers are mentally ill.

    So you are going with ‘I am not saying that all mass murderers are mentally ill but performing mass murder is “suggestive of a mental illness.”

    Remember, this guy didn’t want to just kill people. He wanted to cut their body parts off and brandish them as trophies.

    [TRIGGER WARNING FOR HUMAN TROPHY COLLECTION]

    During World War II, US Marines and soldiers placed skulls from dead Japanese soldiers on the hoods of their jeeps. Scroll down on this page to see four photos from World War II of the intentional display of skulls from Japanese soldiers. See also here for more. Some US units collected the ears of dead Viet Cong and NVA soldiers. Were all of these soldiers insane?

    He fully intended to commit suicide if they didn’t kill him first.

    When I was in high school, one of my teachers was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. He took his own life when he realized that the cancer was both changing who he was and destroying his eyesight. He was in severe pain. The chose to commit suicide (he used a shotgun, not police, but the effect was the same). Was he insane?

    He said that he would enjoy killing his roommates, “in their sleep.”

    I have had roommates (college, Army) towards whom I , in the past, expressed a willingness to kill them. But, I have already admitted to mental illness, so I guess that is, by your arguments, normal.

    He sure sounds pathological to me. Your mileage may vary.

    Sounds to me like he rationalized his murder spree by both blaming the victims and, at the same time, utilizing the moral ‘command authority’ of misogynist activists. The same way that soldiers rationalize killing in combat by blaming their victims and utilizing the protection of the legal commmand authority.

    My mileage is that we have no way of knowing with any degree of confidence what his mental state was when he planned and executed his killing spree. In early 21st century United States culture, what he did is not all that unusual (keep in mind, we have a political party that is wedded to the idea that violence, specifically fire arms, are the way to solve all problems) and his rationalization, via the moral command authority of the men’s rights movement, put him right in line with, perhaps, half the adult men in the United States. Is the GOP, and all their members and supporters, insane? Is the NRA, and all their members and supporters, insane?

    I do have a real question for you, though. Why is it so very important, to you, that Rodgers was insane (by whatever of your changing definitions you want to use) and absolutely anathema that what he did was in any way influenced by the misogyny activists and other, less savoury parts, of United States culture?

  233. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Citation, please. Pretty please. With sugar on top.

    Sorry, that is purely my humble opinion, unlike your arrogant fuckwittery.

    Also, since you are capitalizing “Earth” as in the planet we are standing on as opposed to just “dirt,” shouldn’t “fuckwit” also be capitalized?

    Oh, now you are an expert on language, and I still must take your unhumble opinion for it? I don’t think so Tim. You need citations, as you are arrogant on the internet, and if you checked your facts like any scientist does daily, you wouldn’t be so arrogant in your fuckwittery. You would realize not only could you be wrong, you are wrong.

    I’m waiting for you evidence your self right. That starts with evidencing basic definitions, and the concept you can be wrong. That means debate. If you can’t be wrong, you preach.

  234. pharyngsd says

    Arawhon

    Wow, pharyngsd, you devolved into being a petty little troll quickly.

    I’m not trolling. I’m just having some fun with some internet bullies.

    Also, you never answered my question and I did it all polite and civil too.

    Well, I hope you’ll show some understanding. With all the vile comments spewed around here, it’s sometimes difficult to know when someone is interested in having an actual conversation rather than just looking for an excuse to cast childish aspersions.

    To My Lai:

    I really don’t know. What they did was certainly morally reprehensible, and even if they were mentally ill, they have to take responsibility for what they did, unless they were found to be legally insane at the time of the killings.

    One thing to keep in mind is that my standard for mental illness aligns pretty much with the DSM. I think the DSM-V actually has a diagnosis for PTSD, and it wouldn’t surprise me (given the little I know about the individuals who actually did the killing) to learn that they were suffering from PTSD.

    Of course, war is a completely different context that most ordinary citizens operate in. All kinds of things that would be considered “normal” in wartime would get you locked up for life in peacetime. Ditto for standards of mental health: what might be considered crazy back home might just be another day at work for a soldier.

  235. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’m not trolling. I’m just having some fun with some internet bullies.

    By being a bully yourself.

    With all the vile comments spewed around here, it’s sometimes difficult to know when someone is interested in having an actual conversation rather than just looking for an excuse to cast childish aspersions.

    With your childish and immature arguments, there is no other choice than to treat you like an immature person, and teach you how you should argue. From evidence and good definitions, not expecting anybody to take your unsupported word for anything other than tripe.
    When will you mature your arguments, if you can?

    Ditto for standards of mental health: what might be considered crazy back home might just be another day at work for a soldier.

    Then there are nuances you shouldn’t just argue for, but find support in the mental health journals. But what do you present? Nothing.

  236. says

    pharyngsd:

    I’m not trolling. I’m just having some fun with some internet bullies.

    You should read the commenting rules. This is a rude block. If you can’t handle being called mean names, this isn’t the place for you. Several of us have tried to engage you, but you refuse to even understand what we’re saying, and in some cases, you refuse to engage with what people are saying. So at this point, you’re getting called harsh names. You ain’t being bullied fool.

  237. pharyngsd says

    Ogvorbis

    So you are going with ‘I am not saying that all mass murderers are mentally ill but performing mass murder is “suggestive of a mental illness.”

    No, I’m saying that not all mentally ill people are mass murderers, but Rogers was mentally ill. (IMHO, of course.)

    Stalin was a mass murderer. Was he mentally ill? I’d say so, in the sense that it wouldn’t surprise me in the least to find out he was some kind of psychopath, (to put it colloquially), had he been tested.

    During World War II, US Marines and soldiers placed skulls from dead Japanese soldiers on the hoods of their jeeps.

    Yep. Of course, as I noted above, behavioral standards for individuals during wartime are different than the behavioral standards for individuals during peacetime. Ditto for mental health standards. The context of a person’s environment is important. E.g. Depression can be a normal response to the death of a loved one. You’re not necessarily “clinically depressed” because you’re sad for a time after a loved one dies. But if you are sad for *months* after someone dies and you are unable to work, sleep, etc. That’s a different story.

    I don’t have to point out that Rodgers was not a soldier in a war situation, do I?

    When I was in high school, one of my teachers was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. He took his own life when he realized that the cancer was both changing who he was and destroying his eyesight. He was in severe pain. The chose to commit suicide (he used a shotgun, not police, but the effect was the same). Was he insane?

    I don’t think so. Rodger didn’t have extreme pain due to inoperable brain cancer, did he?

    I have had roommates (college, Army) towards whom I , in the past, expressed a willingness to kill them. But, I have already admitted to mental illness, so I guess that is, by your arguments, normal.

    Even if you hadn’t admitted to mental illness, I think it’s normal to express the occasional violent intentions.

    You didn’t act on them, did you? You could control your “willingness to kill them?”

    My mileage is that we have no way of knowing with any degree of confidence what his mental state was when he planned and executed his killing spree.

    Reasonable adults can disagree with each other on this point.

    Why is it so very important, to you, that Rodgers was insane (by whatever of your changing definitions you want to use) and absolutely anathema that what he did was in any way influenced by the misogyny activists and other, less savoury parts, of United States culture?

    It’s not all that important to me that Rodger was insane, I just think he was. If some kind of evidence arose indicating he wasn’t suffering from some kind of mental illness, I’d be interested. In the meantime, I like talking about these kinds of topics and so…I dunno. Here I am.

    It also not anathema to me that he was influenced by his misogyny or the “cult of hatred” or whatever you want to call that unsavory part of U.S. culture. As I have said before, his misogyny does not indicate a mental illness ipso facto. Any more than your average racist is suffering from mental illness. However, when you go from “spouting racist ideas” to homicidal rampage, as that guy in Norway did, you have crossed a line. Especially if it’s accompanied by a death wish, as it did in the case of Rodger.

    Think about Manson’s followers. Were they Mentally Ill? We know that they were certainly influenced by Manson’s whackadoodle ideas about starting a revolution, and I’m sure the drugs they were abusing didn’t exactly lead to clear thinking, nor did the basic living environment in the “family.”

    Were they insane? Apparently not legally, since they were all convicted of murder. What about Mentally Ill?

    What do *you* think?

  238. says

    Ah, it’s the good ole “killing people in wartime is different from killing people in a murder spree”.
    When you kill in wartime or when you willingly sacrifice your life, it’s not indicative of a mental illness, but when Elliot Rodger kills people, it’s completely different and is indicative of mental illness.
    Why is it different? Because the fuckwit says so. And xe is completely qualified to diagnose mental illness (online and from a dead person that he’s never met, and based on reading the DSM V, which totes makes him a psychiatrist…waddaya mean it doesn’t work that way for everyone else? Clearly this special snowflake is special) just like xe can diagnose a common cold (y’know bc the two are exactly the same thing). But don’t worry, xe isn’t doing this to draw a causal connection between being mentally ill and being a killer. Xe is just doing this for…I dunno..shits n giggles I guess.
    I’ll take special pleading for $1000 Alex.

  239. says

    You have to love the mindset that says
    “I’m not qualified in any way to diagnose the mental health of an individual (especially since I’m not a mental health professional, and I’ve never met the guy, and he is dead), but I’m going to do it anyway, using my layperson’s understanding of mental illness and I’m going to throw it out there for, well, no particular reason. Just because. Then when people disagree with me and point out that that’s not how you diagnose someone…when people mention that I’m not a qualified mental health professional…when people point out that a qualified pro would not diagnose someone online, whether they are living or dead…I just reassert my opinion that I can do this. I just tell everyone over and over again that my qualifications for determining the mental health of others is every bit as credible as a pro, even though I don’t know what the fuck I’m talking about, and everything I know is from that one time I skimmed the DSM V.”
    Yup, lovely mindset, that.

    I wonder if I can just go read some books on law without having to go to law school.
    Or…hey! I’m going to go read a book on evolutionary biology and I’ll be as qualified as PZ!

  240. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    Thank you for finally answering my question. Im kind of sad to see that you answered just as I thought you would, by trying to say that its somehow different for soldiers. Frankly, ER comes across as living in a siege mentality much like a soldiers. You make a special exception for soldiers waving around parts of bodies as trophies, but dont give it to ER because some how he wasnt at war. Even though by his own words he felt he was at war, that he was warring against those vile feminists and women, those traitors to his gender that get with those bitches.

    And no, the contexts for mental illness are not relative towards ones environment. They are the same whether someone is part of the Army on the battlefield, or as a citizen here in the US.
    Also, Depression isnt just prolonged sadness. Its a host of other symptoms. Maybe you should pick up that DSM-V you like to tout as being perfectly fine to diagnose people with and look up what having depression actually means.

  241. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    Forgetting that certain words are filtered and freaking out for 30 seconds when you dont see your post isnt fun, lol. pharyngsd, I have a reply to you in the spam trap. All I have to say is that Im disappointed in your reply as it is exactly what I thought it would be.

  242. Lofty says

    Pharyngsd, what do you get from an armchair diagnosis of a murderer as “mentally ill”, apart from a case of terminal smugness? What use is this diagnosis other than to deflect from one of systemic toxic misogyny?

  243. PatrickG says

    Can we have a contest to determine the stupidest argument Pharyngsd has made on this thread? For me, I’ve got two contenders, and two runners up:

    (1) Pharyngsd‘s response to whether suicide bombers are mentally ill:

    Although it wouldn’t come as a surprise to me to learn that some of them are, I think it depends on the suicide bomber, don’t you?

    Does suck that even though they commit mass murder in the service of ideology — hell, some of them even record videos about why they did it! — it’s not possible to determine whether they’re mentally ill. We apparently can’t just snap-diagnose, we need an expert or something. Just like that Elliot Rodg… oh wait, what were we talking about again?

    (2) Pharyngsd‘s conviction that we can determine what mental illness is by polling random people on the street:

    .If you don’t want to take my word for it, why don’t you ask the next 10 people you meet on the street whether or not a death wish leading to a suicidal rampage in which 6 people are murdered and many others wounded is indicative of mental illness?…Let me know what you discover.

    (Runner Up #1) Pharyngsd‘s ability to Diagnose History’s Greatest Monsters:

    Also, c’mon Pharyngsd, you’ve done Hitler and Stalin, right? Aren’t you going to diagnose Pol Pot too? Maybe throw in a little Ghenghis Khan? Just think of all of history’s greatest monsters you can shed your insight on! The Manson thing was a nice touch, showed you can come up with examples that aren’t genocidal political leaders. Major props.

    (Runner Up #2) Pharyngsd‘s utter ignorance of the literature regarding mental illness. Too many examples to cite, but I really did enjoy the argument that anyone who wants to kill themselves is clinically depressed. That’s just comedy gold!

    Others may have other submissions for the Stupidest Thing This Idiot Has Said, but I remain firmly convinced my entries are serious contenders.

  244. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    but Rogers was mentally ill. (IMHO, of course.)

    No evidence or defintion of mental illness linked to, dismissed as fuckwittery.

    I don’t have to point out that Rodgers was not a soldier in a war situation, do I?

    Irrelevant to the situation. It is all to the time or none of the time. Your inconsistent definitions make you conclusions bullshit.

    Reasonable adults can disagree with each other on this point.

    Except you aren’t a reasonable adult. You are unable to define mental illness with precision and consistency, and with references to the mental health literature. You are an internet bully here to force you unhumble presuppositional opinion down our throats. Definition of an internet bully.

    It’s not all that important to me that Rodger was insane, I just think he was.

    If its not important to you, you would have shut the fuck up days ago. It is important to you that ER was mentally ill.

    What about Mentally Ill?

    What do *you* think?

    What I think doesn’t matter. I am unable to diagnose mental illness. Why? No training, no solid definitions, no first hand knowledge of anybody involved. Just like you. You have no business trying to make any conclusive definitions. The height of arrogance.

  245. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A show of hands. How many think Pharyngsd real goal is to deflect attention from the rampant misogyny and the effect it had on ER. *raises hand*

  246. pharyngsd says

    Lofty

    Pharyngsd, what do you get from an armchair diagnosis of a murderer as “mentally ill”, apart from a case of terminal smugness?

    Citation please on my current level of smugness.

    Lofty

    What use is this diagnosis other than to deflect from one of systemic toxic misogyny?

    It doesn’t deflect anything, because his misogyny is unrelated to his diagnosis, assuming he actually had one. I think I’ve made that point approximately 25.363 * 10E+25 times now.

    What it *does* do, however, is provide a more complete explanation of his murderous rampage. I.e. it fits the data better.

    To wit:

    1) He had a death wish. Some kind of mental illness is a good explanation for a death wish. Systemic toxic misogyny does not explain his death wish at all.
    2) He murdered his three roommates. Some kind of mental illness can explain why someone would murder three people without remorse and for completely irrational motives. Systemic toxic misogyny does not explain these murders at all.
    3) He shot half a dozen strangers some of them men, several of them fatally. Systemic toxic misogyny could be the “fundamental” basis for his attack on the women. But it doesn’t explain his fatal attack on the man he shot in the deli at all.
    4) In all cases, his behavior was completely deviant and maniacal. To refer to him colloquially as a “homocidal maniac,” as I did in the very first post, is absolutely apt. Are you suggesting that systemic toxic misogyny leads invariably to homicidal mania? Prove that and you’ll win a prize. Maybe even a Nobel.

    Of course, there is also the fact that Rodger had been seeing a therapist off and on since he was eight years old. Do you think his parents thought he had mental health issues? Do you think any one of his therapists might have given him a diagnosis? Did they prescribe Risperidone because they were tools of “Big Pharma?”

  247. chigau (違う) says

    I think that pharyngsd is a troll.
    In it for the kicks, with no real position on anything.

  248. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Citation please on my current level of smugness.

    Try here. That’s one more link than you have shown in days.

    Of course, there is also the fact that Rodger had been seeing a therapist off and on since he was eight years old. Do you think his parents thought he had mental health issues? Do you think any one of his therapists might have given him a diagnosis? Did they prescribe Risperidone because they were tools of “Big Pharma?”

    Who gives a shit why you come to a fuckwitted conclusion without the tools to make the conclusion? Nobody gives a shit about your fallacious conclusion. It can’t be true, as you haven’t provided the details from point A to the end, with references to the mental health literature. All you have is your presuppositions and biases. *snicker*

  249. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Now back to the discussion of the rampant misogyny and hate fed into ER by the MRA/PUA community, and its toxic effects on the world with internet bullies giving out rape and death threats to those who won’t buckle under to their hatred.

  250. PatrickG says

    @ Tony!

    Both of your top contenders are mind-numbingly idiotic. I don’t know if I can pick one.

    Hell, why do you think I had two top contenders and two runners-up? This was after trying to narrow it down!

    However, since I only sometimes get the time to delve into comment sections*, let me once again offer salutations and admiration to those willing to engage with dingbats like the Idiot In Question.

    * The one positive of unemployment, a year or so ago, was being able to read and engage with more things. Now, I’m obviously going to go mass murder some Belgians for scheduling a developer’s meeting at 4:00am (my local time). Must be mentally ill. Unless I’m a suicide bomber. Or Hitler. Shit, this mental health stuff is hard.

  251. says

    Nerd:

    How many think Pharyngsd real goal is to deflect attention from the rampant misogyny and the effect it had on ER. *raises hand*

    *raises hand*
    Not only that, but xe has ignored ER’s racism.
    In fact, xe has all but ignored the socio-cultural factors that influenced ER and led to his actions (oh, there’s been lip-service paid, but most of hir focus has been on “gosh darnit, ER was mentally ill bc he killed people and committed suicide, and that’s just not what a NHB does”). Instead Pharngsd continues to act as if xe has any authority at all to declare someone mentally ill (and multiple dead people at that).

  252. PatrickG says

    Oh hell, I responded to Tony without seeing the dingbat’s #257. He basically summed up all of his idiocy in one post. If only all trolls were so obliging!

    I’m tremendously amused by his invocation of Big Pharma, though. Either he’s trying to accuse the people here of being shills*, or he’s an anti-vaxxer, or both. Hard to say, since he clearly has no ability to argue rationally. Makes him difficult to read!

    * Which, given the commentariat here, is too funny.

  253. PatrickG says

    Some kind of mental illness is a good explanation for a death wish.

    Some kind of grammar is a good explanation for sentence structure, cupcake.

  254. says

    pharyngsd:

    To wit:

    1) He had a death wish. Some kind of mental illness is a good explanation for a death wish. Systemic toxic misogyny does not explain his death wish at all.

    Having a death wish does not mean someone is mentally ill. As I alluded to above, suicide bombers aren’t mentally ill just bc they commit suicide and kill people.

    Suicide bombers are not mentally ill or unhinged, but acting rationally in pursuit of the “benefits” they perceive from being part of a strict and close-knit religious enterprise, according to a University of Nottingham academic.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070620115415.htm

    Why did ER wish to die? There’s no evidence he was mentally ill, and I have no clue why he wanted to die, so rather than speculate or play a rousing game of Arguing From Ignorance, I’ll just accept that I don’t know why.
    BTW, misogyny wasn’t ER’s only motivation.

    2) He murdered his three roommates. Some kind of mental illness can explain why someone would murder three people without remorse and for completely irrational motives. Systemic toxic misogyny does not explain these murders at all.

    People kill for a variety of reasons, and your attempts to link murder with mental illness are transparent. ER was also driven by racism–a racism that added to his misogyny:

    A lot has been written about his misogyny, which fills his manifesto, and how his rage at women fueled his rampage. But Rodger made no secret about how he also hated the men that women chose over him, especially when they were not white.

    In January, Rodger went to a pick-up artist bashing website (PUAHate.com), now taken down, and responded to a person who identified himself as an Asian male, who wondered if wearing a particular type of shoes would help his chances with white women. Rodger replied, “Shoes won’t help you get white girls. White girls are disgusted by you, silly little Asian.” The other man then posted what he said were photos of himself with a white woman. Rodger dismissed the photos as fakes and added, “Full Asian men are disgustingly ugly and white girls would never go for you. You’re just butthurt that you were born as an Asian piece of shit, so you lash out by linking these fake pictures. You even admit that you wish you were half white. You’ll never be half-white and you’ll never fulfill your dream of marrying a white woman. I suggest you jump off a bridge.”

    Rodger’s racism went beyond his put downs of Asians. “How could an inferior, ugly black boy be able to get a white girl and not me?” he wrote in his manifesto, one of many examples of such jealousy. “I am beautiful, and I am half white myself. I am descended from British aristocracy. He is descended from slaves. I deserve it more.”
    http://www.alternet.org/culture/8-things-you-may-not-know-about-elliot-rodgers-killing-spree?paging=off&current_page=1#bookmark

    ER’s hatred of Asians (and he was half-Asian, so there’s a healthy bit of self-loathing there) was part of his motivation in killing his roommates. No mental illness necessary for someone to kill out of racism.

    3) He shot half a dozen strangers some of them men, several of them fatally. Systemic toxic misogyny could be the “fundamental” basis for his attack on the women. But it doesn’t explain his fatal attack on the man he shot in the deli at all.

    We know from his manifesto and videos that ER was jealous of many men. He felt a great many men did not deserve the women they were with. He felt he was entitled to the attention of women where other men weren’t. ER was immersed in a culture of toxic masculinity, which shaped his opinion of other men, and himself.

    But very little attention has been given to the overwhelming message of society that for heterosexual men—if you are not attracting women, if you are not getting laid—you are an utter failure. The dividing line between men who are desirable and have sex, and those who don’t, is often cruel and arbitrary. In the case of Rodger, his rejections likely had something to do with his affect, which suggested to girls and women that he wasn’t right for dating, a relationship or sex. We all know males who seem to be particularly klutzy around women, and don’t have a clue as to why they fail with the other gender. That failing and frequent rejection is devastating and can breed depression and worse.

    Here is Rodger from his manifesto, “My misery became harder and harder to bear, and none of my parents understood my plight…. My father never prepared me for facing such a cruel world. He never taught me how to attract girls. He never warned me that if I didn’t attract girls at an early age, my life would fall into a misrable pit of despair.”

    And this after graduating from high school: “At my father’s house, we watched the movie Alpha Dog after dinner one night. The movie depicts a lot of teenagers and young people partying and having sex with beautiful girls, living the life that I’ve desired for so long. The main character is a fifteen year old kid who has sex with two hot girls in a swimming pool. I was so envious that I delighted in his death at the end… The movie deeply effected me emotionally, and I would think about it for some time afterwards.”

    (same link as above)
    This is another socio-cultural problem in the United States: this idea of what it means to be a man. The idea that there are ways you’re supposed to perform, things you’re supposed to do that make you a man, and if you don’t do these things, you’re a failure. That’s quite evident in his writing.

    4) In all cases, his behavior was completely deviant and maniacal. To refer to him colloquially as a “homocidal maniac,” as I did in the very first post, is absolutely apt. Are you suggesting that systemic toxic misogyny leads invariably to homicidal mania? Prove that and you’ll win a prize. Maybe even a Nobel.

    Our culture is suffused with toxic masculinity, sexism and racism. ER was raised in that like all of us. He also had a massive sense of entitlement. One other thing: he was raised in a culture that promotes violence, and the use of guns to resolve conflicts.

    Of course, there is also the fact that Rodger had been seeing a therapist off and on since he was eight years old. Do you think his parents thought he had mental health issues? Do you think any one of his therapists might have given him a diagnosis? Did they prescribe Risperidone because they were tools of “Big Pharma?”

    One can see a therapist for all manner of issues. Knowing that ER was in therapy for years does fuck all to prove he was mentally ill:

    People pursue counseling and therapy for a variety of reasons. Some may enter therapy to address major life changes, such as divorce, and others may seek help in managing mental health conditions, like depression. There’s a common misconception that people who go to therapy are “crazy,” when in fact, most therapy clients are ordinary people struggling with common, everyday issues.
    http://www.goodtherapy.org/therapy-issues.html#

    Reasons people go to therapy (from the link above):
    ADHD
    Bullying
    Creative Blocks
    Divorce
    Emotional Abuse
    Family Problems
    Grief
    Health Issues
    Identity Issues
    Jealousy
    LGBT Issues
    Mood Swings
    OCD
    Paranoia
    Religious Issues
    Self-Esteem
    Trust Issues
    Worthlessness
    Young Adult Issues
    (and more)

    Given all the reasons that people in general (and ER specifically) seek therapy, it is flat out wrong to assert or hint that people who do so have mental health problems (unless you expand mental health problems to such a degree that *every* human being has them, and then it becomes pointless to claim ER was suffering from a mental health problem that led to his actions)

    Pharyngsd you have failed, utterly, to make a case for Elliot Rodger having a mental illness. While it is possible he was mentally ill, it is likely we’ll never know. We do know that his actions were heavily influenced by a culture of entitlement, toxic masculinity, & misogyny, as well as a culture that glorifies violence and guns to resolve conflict. All of that is more than necessary to explain his horrible actions. And there’s a fuckton more evidence from his manifesto and videos to support this claim than there is for your poorly evidenced assertion.

    Should I bleep out the 2 coarse words for you so that you can comprehend the rest of this comment? Or should I fetch the fainting couch so you’ll have somewhere comfortable to fall when you read my ::gasp:: harsh/curse/swear/naughty/coarse words?

  255. says

    PatrickG:
    (completely unrelated to anything the nitwit is saying…I know what you mean about unemployment. I’ve been out of a job since 5/25, which is one reason I’ve been able to participate here as much as I have. I’d rather have a job and go back to commenting off and on throughout the week. Le sigh…)

  256. says

    Interesting. The AlterNet link I gave above also contains this bit:

    5. Media Speculation About Possible Aspergers Is Irresponsible.

    Following the Sandy Hook grade school shooting in 2012 and Isla Vista shootings, it was reported—but not confirmed—that these shooters had Asperger’s syndrome, implying this condition might be a contributing factor in the tragedies.

    This line of speculation is wrong on many fronts. It is inaccurate to blur personality disorders that turn people into killers with neural development disorders such as Aspergers, which is characterized only by impaired social interaction, verbal and non-verbal communication difficulties, and restricted and repetitive behavior. Such inferences scapegoat and stigmatize a large number of children, teenagers, and adults (mostly boys and young men) who are, as a group, gentle and even overly sensitive individuals. Simply put, there is no component of this syndrome that can turn someone into a mass killer.

    Mental health professionals have been quick to caution the media. “There really is no clear association between Asperger’s and violent behavior,” psychologist Elizabeth Laugeson, an assistant clinical professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, told the Associated Press. And while some people on the autistic spectrum may have higher rates of aggressive behaviors (mostly yelling, emotional outbursts, pushing and shoving) than the general public, this in no way translates into the homocidal mania at Newtown and Isla Vista.

    Adults and children are already wary of “aspies” and other children on the spectrum. They’re geeky, quiet, and don’t handle social engagement well. Because of this, they are already shunned by their peers and the targets of bullying, which is something they are not very well-equipped to handle, considering their neurological diagnoses. Putting this additional fear into the community—the notion that people with Asperger’s are just a bunch of ticking time bombs—can be way too much for aspies or their families to handle. Living with the syndrome is already difficult for them as it is.

  257. Louis says

    Pharyngsd,

    Those links aren’t only about stigma. They’re about the effects of stigma, the effects of cod/folk psychology, how those things influence suicide rates, policy and a whole series of other things.

    But I guess you know that from reading the whole lot in, what was it? 1 hour 32 mins between our two posts.

    I appreciate you wish to defend your opinions, but sadly, those opinions are both wrong and part of a harmful series of views that persist in society. Your repeated claims about homicidality being linked to mental illness are just one massively counterfactual case in point.

    Louis

  258. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @ Tony

    I wonder if I can just go read some books on law without having to go to law school.

    No need to bother reading books. Just ask Crip Dyke in the Thunderdome if you run across a situation you can’t BS your way through. What could possibly go wrong?

  259. bassmike says

    I think this distinction between war and not war is bogus. I would argue that ER and Anders Breivik considered themselves at war with the people they despised. In times of war many rules are thrown out of the window. And both were encouraged by the other participants in the websites they frequented, to escalate their hatred to the homicidal point that they both reached. No mental illness required.

  260. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Wow.

    Another response from Pharyngsd to me that completely ignores every thing that I wrote about rationalizations — soldiers or mass murderers — which shows a mechanism through which an authority figure (or figures) can incite violence whether or not the murderer is mentally ill, etc.

    I also notice that now Pharyngsd has used Aspergers Syndrome/Pervasive Developmental Disability, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and anyone who has sought therapy to explain away Rodger’s killing spree. So, Pharyngsd, you wanna go whole hog and add in childhood sexual abuse as yet another thing that would indicate I should be watched as a potential mass-murderer? That’s the only part of my mental cocktail that you haven’t used to explain away atrocities.

    Think about what your are doing. Think about the people — real, living and breathing people — who you are hitting with splash damage in your attempt to show (1) that Rodger’s fascination and obsession with misogyny activists had nothing at all to do with his crime, (2) that the worship of violence and guns in the United States had nothing at all to do with his crime, (3) that, because you do not understand his motivations or rationalizations, he must be insane and that totes explains it all.

    bassmike @271:

    I think this distinction between war and not war is bogus. I would argue that ER and Anders Breivik considered themselves at war with the people they despised. In times of war many rules are thrown out of the window. And both were encouraged by the other participants in the websites they frequented, to escalate their hatred to the homicidal point that they both reached. No mental illness required.

    Agreed.

    One of the toughest things for a recruit in BASIC is to overcome the societal horror of killing another human being. The way that is done is by showing the recruit that, in a war, it is not their responsibility if they kill another human being because they are operating under the legal and moral aegis of the military command authority (there are exceptions — atrocities can not be explained away by claiming the soldier was following orders). Additionally, the military uses ‘target’ and other euphemisms to dehumanize, to ‘other’, the enemy — we never shot at people, we shot at targets.

    Mass murderers, whether Breivik, or the followers of Manson, or Rodgers, are also covered by the same distinction. The ‘legal and moral command authority’ is not set down in law, but that does not mean that it doesn’t free an individual from the moral aversion to killing someone. And, to Rodgers. and Breivik, and the Columbine killers, and most of the mass murders of the past decade, they did not see their victims as humans — they were targets, the enemy, a danger.

    This is, for me, an uncomfortable truth. Sane people can, and will, commit atrocities, mass murder, war if they can rationalize away the moral complications and dehumanize their victims.

    Hell, that’s even the way that many rapists manage to come across as normal, nice guys. People who are leaders in the community. People you can trust with your children. They have rationalized and dehumanized to the point that what they are doing is morally acceptable.

  261. pharyngsd says

    I also notice that now Pharyngsd has used Aspergers Syndrome/Pervasive Developmental Disability, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and anyone who has sought therapy to explain away Rodger’s killing spree.

    This is false.

    I never mentioned Aspergers.
    I said that the perpetrators of the My Lai massacre *may* have had PTSD, but I really didn’t know. I said nothing about PTSD in the context of Rodger.
    I never said that anyone that has sought therapy “explains away” his killing spree. I said the fact that he *had* been in therapy since he was eight years old and was presribed an anti-psychotic medication are indications that he was probably mentally ill.

    So, Pharyngsd, you wanna go whole hog and add in childhood sexual abuse as yet another thing that would indicate I should be watched as a potential mass-murderer?

    You are *really* misreading me here. I have never once implied, and as a matter of fact I have gone out of my way to state otherwise, that the mentally ill are more likely to be violent than anyone else.

    Think about what your are doing. Think about the people — real, living and breathing people — who you are hitting with splash damage in your attempt to show (1) that Rodger’s fascination and obsession with misogyny activists had nothing at all to do with his crime,

    I never said that.

    (2) that the worship of violence and guns in the United States had nothing at all to do with his crime,

    I never said that either.

    that, because you do not understand his motivations or rationalizations, he must be insane and that totes explains it all.

    I never said that it explains it *all.* I said it fits the data better.

    Let’s start slow, shall we?

    Please explain to me how his misogyny leads to a death wish. Forget for the moment, if you can, what *I* believe.

  262. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsg

    Please explain to me how his misogyny leads to a death wish.

    Go read his manifesto and watch his videos and get back to us. This request is equivalent to sitting in a calculus class and asking the professor to explain why 2+2 = 4.

  263. Gerard O says

    I said I would leave this thread alone, but I was lonely waiting at Thunderdome…
    Anyway, I have made some claims based on available evidence, and one of those claims is that Elliot Rodger probably had Asperger’s Syndrome; I have made the same claim about Adolf Hitler. This speculation is not harmful in my opinion as there are no discernible repercussions for any living person — no sensible person would believe that an individual with Asperger’s will inevitably become a murderer or genocidal dictator.
    I say this as someone who is highly skeptical about many of the posthumous diagnoses of AS that float around the internet and some publications that should know better. Beethoven? Yes. Mozart? No. Newton? Yes again. Darwin? Definitely not. But then again, someone else may disagree — and none of the men in question will have their reputation damaged based on these opinions.

  264. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I said the fact that he *had* been in therapy since he was eight years old and was presribed an anti-psychotic medication are indications that he was probably mentally ill.

    Arrogant, presuppositional, and ignorant fuckwit is still trying to make a diagnosis they have no qualifications to make. Dismissed as fuckwittery.

    . I have never once implied, and as a matter of fact I have gone out of my way to state otherwise, that the mentally ill are more likely to be violent than anyone else.

    Then why do you find it necessary to link ER to mental illness? There is no need to do that. His rampant misogyny is there for all to see. Unless, of course, you are trying to cover up that misogyny.

    I never said that it explains it *all.* I said it fits the data better.

    Only to an arrogant, ignorant, and presuppositional fuckwit trying to hide something from closer examination. You care to try again, with real medical defintions, and real medical evidence?

  265. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    This speculation is not harmful in my opinion as there are no discernible repercussions for any living person — no sensible person would believe that an individual with Asperger’s will inevitably become a murderer or genocidal dictator.

    You’re inability to discern any repercussions doesn’t mean they’re not there. Just put a teency bit of thought into what I’m about to say, mmk?

    This is a video about a spree killer who wrote a manifesto and recorded numerous videos about how much he hated women and wanted to exterminate them. You waltz in and go “I’m nearly certain he had Asperger’s!” You can’t see how a sensible person might reach the conclusion that you think there’s a connection between his Asperger’s and the crime he committed which is the only reason we even know this guy exists?

    I mean imagine if, instead of Asperger’s, someone popped up and said, “Hey everyone, I think this guy is Jewish!” Are you going to sit there and claim that nobody would think that person was insinuating something about Jewish people?

  266. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    I said the fact that he *had* been in therapy since he was eight years old and was presribed an anti-psychotic medication are indications that he was probably mentally ill.

    You don’t understand how facts and evidence work.

    Yes he’d been in and out of therapy most of his life. People seek therapy for millions of reasons, most of them having nothing to do with mental illness. Trauma, grief, anxiety, behavioral problems and on and on and on.

    He’d been prescribed an anti-psychotic. That particular drug is also often prescribed for autistic people to help them manage certain behaviors. Perhaps you’ve noticed we have a person in this very thread pushing very hard to convince us that Rodger was on the spectrum. His family is on record saying they suspected he might be on the spectrum.

    So, we have two facts. We have multiple different explanations for those facts: call them A, B, and C. Our facts are both equally consistent with all three explanations. So +2 to all three explanations. Do you see where I’m going with this? All 3 explanations are still tied. We have a stalemate. None of these three theories has put itself forward as being a better explanation than any of the others.

    A fact is not evidence for any particular theory unless it is more likely under that theory than any other theory. You need to not only show that your fact is consistent with your favored theory, you have to also show that your fact is less likely under all possible other theories before you can claim it as evidence for your theory.

  267. Louis says

    I never said that it explains it *all.* I said it fits the data better.

    Except if you understood the first thing about mental illness and the study/diagnosis thereof, not just what you’ve gleaned from Google University (Department of Wikipedia Studies and Pulling Stuff From One’s Arse), you’d realise it doesn’t.

    But since you’ve ignored every opportunity anyone has made to engage you seriously, I’m hardly going to waste my time beyond mocking you.

    Louis

  268. Louis says

    This speculation is not harmful in my opinion as there are no discernible repercussions for any living person

    I actually linked you to evidence that this is not true. The culture of stigma etc that is reinforced by, and reinforces, this precise type of speculation IS demonstrably harmful. Quantifiable in terms of lives lost and/or QALYs.

    Of course you’d know this had you but read what was linked…

    …and less you think this is mere statistical/academic effort, oh no. I spend my (free…HAH!) time volunteering to pick up the pieces of what precisely this stigma leaves behind in its wake. I don’t just know what it does academically/professionally, I see it personally.

    Louis

  269. Gerard O says

    Seven of Mine’s comment #277 borders on moral panic, the same sort of argument you get from Zionist hardliners (thx for the segue): if Palestinians are allowed to voice any sort of opinion, then Jews will be hunted for sport in Central Park. I have stated TWICE on FtB that I believe Rodger’s actions should be classified as a misogynist hate crime, and that people saying otherwise are in denial. I made that analysis based on the available evidence, the same evidence I use to claim that he probably had Asperger’s.

  270. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Nice end run around your own point, for that matter. Two point conversion!

  271. Louis says

    Gerard O,

    Except it isn’t moral panic. It’s a well demonstrated phenomenon with a well demonstrated set of consequences that contributes to, and borrows from, extant stigma surrounding mental illness (and in the case of Asperger’s/ASD, neurological differences between people and developmental differences). I realise it’s tough for people to grasp this, it truly is, but it’s not JUST innocent speculation in a vacuum. Nor is it adhering to some party line. I’m very pleased you recognise Rodgers’ misogyny for what it is, have a biscuit, but also try to realise that your armchair and spectacularly ignorant diagnoses do more harm than good and are based on very little data. It’s impossible for you to have that data and practise ethically in the relevant professional field by commenting on it publicly on a blog. And I doubt you are qualified and experienced in the relevant fields. Even your own experience, if it exists at all, is only enough for you to talk about your own experiences.

    I’ve spent the last ~6 years dealing with this as a volunteer (and from two slightly different angles professionally) and the first things you learn are about safeguarding vulnerable people. Speculation, the world’s easiest vice (that would be advice), trying to help in ways that really are inappropriate and dangerous etc, engaging in folk psychologies…it’s a long list, these things harm and kill. Measurably. The data is in, I even linked to some of it above. You can use those places as a starting point.

    I’ll try to make an analogy (and involves a certain amount of personal being thrown under the bus, so forgive me, I’m under that bus myself): Ethnicity and crime. Certain ethnic groups are more represented in some countries’ prisons than are other ethnic groups. Therefore, given this FACT, it must be true that being of those ethnicities predisposes one to criminality. Right?

    Dear fuck I hope you know that THAT “argument” is horseshit. Do you realise that there are distinct parallels between your diagnoses (and those of your opinion sharing confrères) and the line of thinking that blames criminality on ethnicity.

    The difference between the standard of {cough} “evidence” you are using to support your claim and the standard of evidence used to support even a tentative, probabilistic diagnosis is enormous. Do you truly not know this?

    Louis

  272. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    Go read his manifesto and watch his videos and get back to us.

    Good advice. And I didn’t even make you say “Pretty please with sugar on top.”

    You should read it too.

    Quoted from his manifesto:

    “I felt depressed because I wanted sex, yet I felt unworthy of it.”

    “These recent events cause me to withdraw even further away from the world. I drowned all of my misery in my online games. World of Warcraft was the only thing I had left to live for.”

    “When I heard them talking about their awesome lives and their parties, I had a breakdown right then and there. I realized how much I’ve been missing out in my life, and I cried in front of everyone. I felt like I would never have a life as good as theirs. I told everyone that I wanted to commit suicide. ”

    “My lonely life as a social outcast resumed.”

    “I was in that same dark and miserable place I had been a year previously; lonely, unwanted, miserable. And seething with rage at the world.”

    “Moorpark soon became a place of loneliness and despair, just like any other place I’ve attempted to thrive in.”

    “The only thing I could do was keep my head down and pretend they didn’t exist. I still cried
    on the drive home every day.”

    “I had to make up for all the years I lost in loneliness and isolation, through no fault of my own! It was society’s fault for rejecting me.”

    Questions?

  273. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    Questions?

    What do you think those quotes demonstrate?

  274. Gerard O says

    Thanks to Louis for at least debating my actual statements, but I ask this: “What is it like to be a bat?” Louis has spent time caring for as well as studying the bats, but here’s the thing — I’M THE BAT! This is what the professionals generally don’t understand, and that is why the medical world is so full of second-rate practitioners (I speak of my own experience, not of anyone here). This is why we need to break down this fetishization of authority, and look for the truth wherever it comes from.

  275. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    What do you think those quotes demonstrate?

    That he had a history of depression, as indicated by his self proclaimed intense feelings of isolation, sadness, loneliness, hopelessness, despair and low self esteem that permeated every aspect of his waking life…for *years.*

    He couldn’t cope with simple interpersonal relationships of any kind and couldn’t even tolerate going to school for months at a time.

    What do you think they demonstrate?

  276. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    What do you think they demonstrate?

    More or less the same thing you just said.

    The bad news is that I suggested you read the manifesto because the answer to your question of how misogyny motivated Rodger’s suicide is there. He describes in great detail how he felt wronged because women didn’t behave toward him in the way he felt they were obligated to. His torment was largely because he expected women to throw themselves at his feet and they had no inclination to do so. He hated existing in a world in which unworthy men were having sex with women that he felt ought to belong to him. That is a clearly misogynist thought process.

  277. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    That he had a history of depression, as indicated by his self proclaimed intense feelings of isolation, sadness, loneliness, hopelessness, despair and low self esteem that permeated every aspect of his waking life…for *years.*

    He couldn’t cope with simple interpersonal relationships of any kind and couldn’t even tolerate going to school for months at a time.

    What do you think they demonstrate?

    Nothing. You’re not a mental health profession. You can’t make a diagnosis. Why do you insist on doing so? Even speculation is nothing but mental wankery.

    Why must it be mental illness, and not rampant misogyny?????????

  278. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    More or less the same thing you just said.

    Then we are in agreement that he was probably suffering from some kind of Mental Illness? Likely depression?

    Seven

    The bad news is that I suggested you read the manifesto because the answer to your question of how misogyny motivated Rodger’s suicide is there.

    Heh. Consider it an unintended consequence of your request.

    As to his death wish: where? I don’t see anything that indicates his hatred for women (and men: he hated *everyone*) indicated he had to die. I know he *wanted* to die. But how does “I hate people and want to torture them all to death” get connected to “I must die?”

    And check out *this* little nugget toward the end of his manifesto:

    “I am not part of the human race. Humanity has rejected me. The females of the human species have never wanted to mate with me, so how could I possibly consider myself part of humanity? Humanity has never accepted me among them, and now I know why. I am more than human. I am superior to them all.
    I am Elliot Rodger… Magnificent, glorious, supreme, eminent… Divine! I am the closest thing there is
    to a living god. Humanity is a disgusting, depraved, and evil species. It is my purpose to punish them all. I will purify the world of everything that is wrong with it. On the Day of Retribution, I will truly be a powerful god, punishing everyone I deem to be impure and depraved.”

    He is clearly delusional.

    You still think misogyny is the best explanation for his behavior?

  279. pharyngsd says

    Nerd

    Nothing. You’re not a mental health profession. You can’t make a diagnosis.

    Nerd, your perspective never ceases to astound me.

    You believe him when Rodger’s tells you that he is a misogynist, but you don’t believe him when he tells you he is depressed and sad. Even when he said explicitly that his feelings of loneliness, despair, sadness and general unhappiness had been with him for years.

    Truly amazing.

  280. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    People can get depressed without having depression. But how would depression ring the magic ‘mental illness’ bell and point towards why he committed the acts? I mean, if I grant you he had depressive symptoms, so what? What do we do about people who exhibit depressive symptoms? What do we do with that information other than demonize all people who have clinical depression?

  281. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    Then we are in agreement that he was probably suffering from some kind of Mental Illness? Likely depression?

    Fucking no. You’re equivocating colloquial use of “depression” with a clinical diagnosis. People can be sad, lonely, have difficulty making friends, etc. etc. without being mentally ill. You’re still trying to take one fucking fact which is consistent with multiple explanations and parlay it into proof of mental illness. Get your head out of your ass.

    I don’t see anything that indicates his hatred for women (and men: he hated *everyone*) indicated he had to die.

    Why do you need him to say that explicitly? He says he’s depressed (colloquially: Elliot Rodger was no more qualified to make a clinical diagnosis than you are), sad, lonely and he explains why: because women are fucking people who aren’t him (in a nutshell). You’re looking at him saying he’s depressed, and then completely ignoring the reasons he gives for why he felt that way.

    You believe him when Rodger’s tells you that he is a misogynist, but you don’t believe him when he tells you he is depressed and sad. Even when he said explicitly that his feelings of loneliness, despair, sadness and general unhappiness had been with him for years.

    It’s not that we don’t believe him; it’s that we’re not fucking ignorant or presumptuous enough to consider his description of his feelings as equivalent to a fucking clinical diagnosis.

  282. says

    Huh. It’s like pharyngsd completely ignored my @266, which refuted every one hir points @257, with reason and evidence. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised as xe is not using reason or evidence to support hir opinions (nor is Gerard O who has ignored my #268).

  283. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    You believe him when Rodger’s tells you that he is a misogynist, but you don’t believe him when he tells you he is depressed and sad. Even when he said explicitly that his feelings of loneliness, despair, sadness and general unhappiness had been with him for years.

    Spoken like a true MRA/PUA trying to denigrate the link to rampant misogyny. Typical and not surprising you would say that.
    You can’t make any diagnosis of his mental health that I will believe. Why? You aren’t qualified to do so, and neither am I. So, since I have honesty and integrity, unlike you, I don’t make any diagnosis. That makes me smarter than you too.
    You must have an agenda to keep aggressively pushing the mental illness fuckwitted and stupid claim. If you were merely being assertive, you would have left after you had your say. Now you are simply trying to bully us with your continued repetition of rejected evidence, evidence that doesn’t prove your inept and stupid diagnosis.
    What the fuck is your agenda? I’ll presume the worst until you demonstrate otherwise.

  284. says

    pharyngsd:

    Nerd, your perspective never ceases to astound me.

    You believe him when Rodger’s tells you that he is a misogynist, but you don’t believe him when he tells you he is depressed and sad. Even when he said explicitly that his feelings of loneliness, despair, sadness and general unhappiness had been with him for years.

    Truly amazing.

    Misogyny, as you’ve noted, is not a mental illness. It does not require a diagnosis from a qualified professional.
    Depression *is* does require diagnosis from a mental professional. You may be using a layperson’s definition of depression, but that’s not a clinical diagnosis and it doesn’t mean shit when it comes to understanding mental illness.

    Again, your layperson understanding of mental illness does not qualify you to diagnose anyone, let alone a dead person you’ve never met. That’s not how mental health pro’s operate. If they won’t do that, why are you continuing to do so? Unless you think you’re more qualified.

  285. says

    Nerd @290:

    Why must it be mental illness, and not rampant misogyny?????????

    I think precision might be better here. Misogyny was heavily at play, yes, but there were more socio-cultural influences on his behavior, such as racism, toxic masculinity and gun culture. It’s *all* of these factors that influenced ER and led to his actions. Somewhere along the way the focus has shifted to just misogyny and I’ve been just as guilty of that narrow focus as well. For all that pharyngsd is deeply wrong, xe is right* about one thing: misogyny is not the full explanation for ER’s actions. We need to remember that his actions were influenced by multiple social & cultural factors.

    *feels odd to say this asshole is right about anything, even something so minor

  286. says

    Gerard O:

    This is why we need to break down this fetishization of authority, and look for the truth wherever it comes from.

    There is no fetishization of authority here. There is a proper amount of respect for the people in the relevant fields with the knowledge and expertise. There is also an understanding that even people skilled in particular areas are still human and can make mistakes. Science offers the best method of understanding our reality by the systematic acquisition of knowledge and application of the scientific method. Falsifiability and replicability are incredibly important in minimizing the potential for human bias. Your way offers none of that. Go proselytize elsewhere.

  287. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    We need to remember that his actions were influenced by multiple social & cultural factors.

    True, multiple factors are at play. But, Pharyngsd isn’t addressing any of them. His agenda is obvious though. Xe desperately wants to hide something under the rug of mental illness. What?

  288. pharyngsd says

    throwaway

    People can get depressed without having depression.

    Of course. But his feelings of hopelessness and sadness lasted for *years.* It was literally incapacitating.

    throwaway

    I mean, if I grant you he had depressive symptoms, so what?

    It explains his death wish. It explains why he felt he had to die.

    throwaway

    What do we do about people who exhibit depressive symptoms?

    We try to get them the help they need.

    throwaway

    What do we do with that information other than demonize all people who have clinical depression?

    Recognizing a mental illness does not demonize it. As a matter of fact, it can make our response more humane. That’s why we have a “legally sane” definition in our courts. We don’t want to subject a person to the penal code if they are not really responsible for their actions because they have a *disease.*

    The idea is that we can hope for a cure to the disease and develop a treatment plan that might make the person more likely to live a happy productive life. We need to talk about mental illness openly and honestly.

    Having read his manifesto, I am even *more* convinced that much of Rodger’s behavior was due to a serious mental illness. If he had gotten excellent treatment at an early age, would that have avoided the tragedy? I dunno. I like to think it would have.

  289. Louis says

    Gerard O,

    I’m sorry to read “you’re the bat”. Genuinely. Whatever bat-aspect you have, most of them suck pretty hard! (Understatement of the year) Did it occur to you that I (and others) might also be bats? Or at least batty!

    DAMN That was a great pun. I demand a medal for it, minimum.

    Louis

  290. Arawhon, a Strawberry Margarita says

    But Louis, you already have all the medals and trophies related to Punmanship. All that is left is is the “Thanks for Participating” trophies.

  291. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Recognizing a mental illness does not demonize it.

    It does if it is linked to a serial killer like ER. What planet are you channeling for such stupidity?

    As a matter of fact, it can make our response more humane.

    Nope, all it does it hide the real factors for the serial killing. Again, what are you trying to hide. And where do you get the audacity to make the diagnosis? No rational person without an agenda can do so.

    Having read his manifesto, I am even *more* convinced that much of Rodger’s behavior was due to a serious mental illness

    Surprise….gee, again, who the fuck you are to demand we must accept your fuckwitted and inappropriate, given your lack of training and lack of interviewing ER, diagnosis? I won’t accept your diagnosis as anything other than fuckwittery.

  292. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Thanks for answering my questions, Pharyngsd.

    Recognizing a mental illness does not demonize it.

    Using a mental illness to explain the unexplainable reactions and actions of someone who was not diagnosed actually is demonizing whichever people have the popular consensus. If you ask me, that will make sufferers less likely to open up when society views them as potential mass murderers or serial killers. We’ve been doing the ‘name why they’re not technically human’ game for centuries. Whether it was race, country, religion, class, or mental status, we’ve always had some convenient reason at-hand why it was OK to avoid the issue and the people who were suffering.

    Also, what about the social ill? How are we supposed to shine a light on that fuel that fed and sustained his anger, loneliness and despair, when we do not diagnose that? He did not commit these acts in a social vacuum. His mental illnesses could have been anything, or nothing at all, and he could have still committed his acts. So how does identifying his mental illness help with fixing the issue of misogyny? Or would you see any attempt at fixing misogyny authoritarian and limiting conscience?

  293. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Using a mental illness to explain the unexplainable reactions and actions of someone who was not diagnosed actually is demonizing whichever people are living with the popular consensus of which mental illness it was.

    Fixing.

  294. says

    So, he was depressed because his expectations about women’s behavior, which he wouldn’t have had if not for cultural misogyny, were going unmet.

    To me this says more about misogyny than mental illness. I have been depressed and considered suicide, but I was never diagnosed with a mental illness, nor should I have been. My depression and my thoughts of suicide were situational. They went away when my situation changed.

    And, I see that neither pharynsyd nor Gerard has responded to my observation that being in therapy for several years WITHOUT a diagnosis is more suggestive of a lack of a diagnosable mental illness than the presence of one. If he had not been in therapy, then the lack of a diagnosis would mean less. Since he was in therapy, the lack of diagnosis suggests one of two things: either his therapist(s) was/were incompetent, or he had no diagnosable mental illness. I also went to therapy a few times, and it helped me deal with problem that had no relationship to mental illness.

  295. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Fuck. Pharyngsd still refuses to even acknowledge that someone can be clinically sane and still, with the right rationalization, guilt transference, and socialization, still commit atrocities. I wonder why Pharyngsd still avoids that rather important aspect of mass murder?

  296. says

    throwaway:

    Also, what about the social ill? How are we supposed to shine a light on that fuel that fed and sustained his anger, loneliness and despair, when we do not diagnose that? He did not commit these acts in a social vacuum.

    Pharyngsd seems quite keen to ignore this, in favor of hir pet theory that ER had a mental illness. We don’t know what that mental illness was (though pharyngsd has uselessly speculated), nor do we know if & how this hypothetical mental illness influenced ERs actions (but the professional mental health specialist, aka pharyngsd, can probably explain it to the rest of us). We also have no idea how “ER had a mental illness” can enable us to prevent future killing sprees by others. So unless one is prepared to state unequivocally that “ER had mental illness X, therefore we need to watch out for other people with mental illness X so they don’t go on killing sprees”, then saying that “ER had a mental illness” is useless. It’s fuckwitted wankery disguised as a diagnosis.

    That’s contrasted by the far more likely (and more evidenced) idea that Elliot Rodger was affected by multiple social & cultural factors. These factors can be discussed and examined. They can be actively fought against. People can be educated. A course of action can be determined (such as working to educate people on the harms of toxic masculinity or advocating for stronger gun control).

  297. says

    Ogvorbis:

    Fuck. Pharyngsd still refuses to even acknowledge that someone can be clinically sane and still, with the right rationalization, guilt transference, and socialization, still commit atrocities. I wonder why Pharyngsd still avoids that rather important aspect of mass murder?

    Hmmm…
    I think it’s bc xe would have to throw hir narrative in the trash and accept that it is not the most reasonable explanation for ER’s actions. Despite claims to the contrary, pharyngsd is quite wedded to the notion that ER was mentally ill.

    For my part, to accept that ER was mentally ill, I’d have to see confirmation from a mental health specialist who directly examined ER while he was alive. That would only confirm that he had a mental illness. One would then need to prove that ERs rampage was a result of that mental illness. None of that has happened, but it doesn’t stop people from adding their useless speculation*.

    *which is, like, totes not useless. Since we can pop a thermometer into the mouth of a child and determine they have a fever, that’s exactly the same thing as determining the mental health of someone that you’ve never had access to, isn’t qualified to diagnose, and is dead.

  298. chris61 says

    @311 Tony

    “For my part, to accept that ER was mentally ill, I’d have to see confirmation from a mental health specialist who directly examined ER while he was alive.

    I expect that mental health specialists who examined ER while alive are bound by HIPAA rules. If he’d been diagnosed as being a danger to himself or others he would have been placed on an involuntary psych hold. He wasn’t placed on such a hold and yet he clearly was a danger to both himself and others. All that proves is that therapists, social workers, police officers and possibly even psychologists aren’t always able to recognize people who are going to commit violent acts.

  299. Tethys says

    Recognizing a mental illness does not demonize it.

    No, but saying that depression caused someone to go on a murder spree does demonize mental illness, in addition to being a false premise. Clinically depressed people tend to have a hard time leaving their beds, much less planning a murder spree, so depression is not an explanation for his stated desire to kill all the women in the world.

    It does not explain the hatred of blonde sorority girls who did not fuck him. It doesn’t explain the attempt to gun down the entire sorority, and anyone who tried to stop him from killing them. Nowhere in the DSM is there an illness that causes someone to hate an entire category of people to the point that you create videos and write manifestos about exterminating them by starving them in concentration camps.

    His suicide was, by his own admission, a way to avoid going to jail. It indicates that he clearly was able to determine right from wrong, and that he was a cowardly, sniveling, entitled shitweasel,on top of being a murderous rampaging misogynist.

    If he had been put on a 72 hour psychiatric hold when his parents asked the police for help, everyone might still be alive.

    On another note, I also want to address the kneejerk “Oh, murderous social maladroit = aspergers, AND he was depressed”.

    People with asperger’s type traits are not violent, nor do they have any sort of mental illness.
    They might explain things to you in excruciating detail, or nitpick tiny errors that most people would ignore, but this is not remotely akin to writing manifestos and going on a murder/suicide mission to a sorority. On behalf of all Aspies everywhere, a hearty fuck you is awarded to Gerard O.

    Given the mountain of hard evidence for extreme and irrational hatred and fear of women (aka misogyny), the real question is why do some people spend so much time blaming depression, Aspergers, or the nebulous mental illness for this hate crime?

  300. pharyngsd says

    throwaway

    Thanks for answering my questions, Pharyngsd.

    Sure thing. This is an important discussion.

    throwaway

    Using a mental illness to explain the unexplainable reactions and actions of someone who was not diagnosed actually is demonizing whichever people have the popular consensus.

    Well, we’re not trying to explain the unexplainable yet. All were talking about now is a death wish. His death wish is perfectly understandable (or explainable) if you accept his narrative that he’s been lonely, sad, and hopeless for essentially his entire life.

    throwaway

    So how does identifying his mental illness help with fixing the issue of misogyny?

    It probably doesn’t. E.g. Just because you treat a racist for depression won’t stop them from being a racist. But, as they say, “it depends.” What if his misogyny were rooted in his fundamental immaturity around sex? He said (at least once) that he wanted to have sex but didn’t feel worthy. And he resented the fact that other people (all other people) could have a successful love life, but he couldn’t. He had extreme feelings of rejection and a very poor sense of self esteem because of his frustrations.

    So, as a therapist might say, his sexual frustration turned to anger. If someone (somehow) had caught on to that process earlier, maybe they could have helped him figure out a different way to cope with his feelings of inadequacy, rather than have it turn into violent rage against all of humanity. (Remember: he hated everyone, not just women.)

    In other words, it’s possible that *his* misogyny was actually the result of a real illness. A coping problem. So if you fix his illness, you fix his misogyny. Maybe. Maybe not.

    He did not commit these acts in a social vacuum. His mental illnesses could have been anything, or nothing at all, and he could have still committed his acts.

    Possibly. But we are not operating in a vacuum either. We have his manifesto demonstrating that he had been severely unhappy, sad and lonely his entire life. We know that he was in therapy and his therapist prescribed anti-psychotic medication. He was so dysfunctional that he had to leave school for three months. He cried all the time. That goes a long way to explain his basic death wish.

    He also claims in his manifesto that he was the closest thing to a God on the planet. He was suffering from a delusion. If he’s delusional and thinks he has a real mission to punish humanity, his behavior is understandable.

  301. pharyngsd says

    SallyStrange

    So, he was depressed because his expectations about women’s behavior, which he wouldn’t have had if not for cultural misogyny, were going unmet.

    Possibly. The key thing to note is that he was depressed. It started when he was about 8 years old, so I think it’s unlikely he had developed a culturally influenced misogyny at that age.

    SallyStrange

    To me this says more about misogyny than mental illness. I have been depressed and considered suicide, but I was never diagnosed with a mental illness, nor should I have been. My depression and my thoughts of suicide were situational. They went away when my situation changed.

    His didn’t. He was unhappy, lonely and sad his whole life.

    SallyStrange

    And, I see that neither pharynsyd nor Gerard has responded to my observation that being in therapy for several years WITHOUT a diagnosis is more suggestive of a lack of a diagnosable mental illness than the presence of one.

    Didn’t see your post. Things are a little, uh, “hectic” around here.

    Do we know that he did not have a diagnosis? I guess he was never diagnosed with Autism, although there are conflicting reports about that…

  302. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Sure thing. This is an important discussion.

    It isn’t a discussion, which implies you could admit you are wrong. What is needed for you to admit you are wrong? If nothing, you are preaching, not discussing.

    It started when he was about 8 years old, so I think it’s unlikely he had developed a culturally influenced misogyny at that age.

    Depression and misogyny aren’t linked, except in your mind. They are separate things, and should be treated as such.

    His didn’t. He was unhappy, lonely and sad his whole life.

    Doesn’t make him mentally ill, or anything but lonely. Many folks have suffered depression and achieved things.

    In other words, it’s possible that *his* misogyny was actually the result of a real illness. A coping problem. So if you fix his illness, you fix his misogyny. Maybe. Maybe not.

    Why are YOU even speculating with this mental masturbation. They aren’t linked. There was no mental illness, as you haven’t defined what mental illness is. I showed that mental illness may not exist. The difference? I went outside of my irrelevant personal opinion and went to those who know the literature, or have practiced in the mental health field. Why haven’t you? Which is why you get nowhere.

    Possibly. But we are not operating in a vacuum either.

    Actually,. you are. You have no training, you haven’t defined your terms, and your pressuppose the answer. You are operating in a vacuum, unlike us.

    Do we know that he did not have a diagnosis?

    No diagnosis of “mental illness” has surfaced. Autism =/= mental illness.

  303. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Pharyngsd, please discuss the implications my post #308 where the existence of “mental illness” was called into question, with respect to your arguments for such a diagnosis, and with respect to what you are attempting to cover up with the “mental illness” diagnosis…..

  304. says

    chris61:

    I expect that mental health specialists who examined ER while alive are bound by HIPAA rules. If he’d been diagnosed as being a danger to himself or others he would have been placed on an involuntary psych hold. He wasn’t placed on such a hold and yet he clearly was a danger to both himself and others. All that proves is that therapists, social workers, police officers and possibly even psychologists aren’t always able to recognize people who are going to commit violent acts.

    He was “clearly a danger to both himself and others” only in retrospect. We don’t know how dangerous he was prior to his murder spree. I can see the allure in thinking “he killed a bunch of people, there should have been signs”, but the simple fact is that we don’t know. Yet another reason that speculating on his mental health is pointless. There is too much unknown, and too much speculation. Unlike the social & cultural factors that influenced him. Those we know. Those we can actively combat.
    Oh and it’s possible he wasn’t placed on an involuntary psych hold bc whatever mental health problems he may have had were not linked to violence.

  305. says

    One can see a therapist for all manner of issues. Knowing that ER was in therapy for years does fuck all to prove he was mentally ill:

    People pursue counseling and therapy for a variety of reasons. Some may enter therapy to address major life changes, such as divorce, and others may seek help in managing mental health conditions, like depression. There’s a common misconception that people who go to therapy are “crazy,” when in fact, most therapy clients are ordinary people struggling with common, everyday issues.
    http://www.goodtherapy.org/therapy-issues.html#

  306. pharyngsd says

    Nerd

    Pharyngsd, please discuss the implications my post #308 where the existence of “mental illness” was called into question, with respect to your arguments for such a diagnosis, and with respect to what you are attempting to cover up with the “mental illness” diagnosis…..

    Apart from the notion that I’m “covering up,” which I believe is completely groundless, I think that would be a good discussion. But I’m afraid that we wouldn’t get very far before you started throwing around vulgar insults and/or making other personal attacks. As far as I’m concerned, life is far too short to wallow in such muck.

    If you would agree to keep the conversation civil, I’d be willing to discuss it.

  307. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    @ Maureen Brian

    I’m going to read all of your future posts in the voice of Tweety Bird in my head now. Hope that’s OK. :P

  308. Maureen Brian says

    Fine with me, Seven of Mine!

    (I had contemplated doing a public dissection of his (?) style of argument at some length but then agreed with myself that there were several million more interesting things I could do instead.)

  309. says

    pharyngsd:

    Apart from the notion that I’m “covering up,” which I believe is completely groundless, I think that would be a good discussion. But I’m afraid that we wouldn’t get very far before you started throwing around vulgar insults and/or making other personal attacks. As far as I’m concerned, life is far too short to wallow in such muck.

    If you would agree to keep the conversation civil, I’d be willing to discuss it.

    Why are you so opposed to vulgarity?
    Fuck
    Shit
    Hell
    Goddamn
    Shitstain
    Shitheap
    Fuckwit
    Douchebag
    Douchemaggott
    Ignoranus
    Fucknuggett
    Sharthead

    These are just a few obscenities off the top of my head. What is it about obscenities that prevent people like you from engaging in a conversation? Why is it that the presence of certain words is such a turn off or angers you so much or offends you or hurts your fee fees that you can’t pay attention to the content of the message? People, myself included, have put forth arguments throughout this thread, and you, like many others whine about the tone.
    Why?
    These words, these *profane* words. These *swear* words. These *curse* words… they’re words that are taboo. They’re considered offensive. Ever ask yourself why?
    Here’s my view: RELIGION*.
    Look at the root of “profanity”–profane. Look at the etymology of “swearing” or “cursing”. The opposition to the use of these words is to a great degree(completely?) borne out of religion.
    Now I don’t know if you’re an atheist, but I am, so I don’t have any reason not to use words that religious organizations don’t like. They’re. Just. Words.

    Now, if these words were used to marginalize oppressed groups of people, then I’d sure as heck not use them. Words like n*gg*r, tra*ny, k*ke, f*gg*t, c*nt…these are slurs used to oppress marginalized people. I’m a gay man, and I don’t want people using my sexuality as an insult; because of that, I refuse to use obscenities that punch down.
    But coarse words like “fuck” or “shit” are simply words. They can apply to anybody and everybody. They aren’t bigoted. So the problems with bigoted slurs do not exist with so-called “profanity”.
    One of the other problems some people have is this bizarre notion that using profanity is mark of those of lesser intellect. Yeah, bc people with PhD’s never say “fuck”. The use of so-called “profanity” has absolutely no bearing on one’s intellect.
    So these words aren’t bigoted slurs and they’re culturally taboo bc of religion.
    There’s no reason to avoid using them. There’s no difference between saying “fuck you” and “buzz off”. The former has more effect, given the strength our society gives to the word “fuck”. It also conveys more attitude that “buzz off”. For me, these words work to drive home my point. They also work to highlight my emotion. When people piss me off, I use the words to enhance my feelings. But I don’t need to be angry to use coarse words. I can do it just for the heck of it. Because there’s nothing wrong with using them.

    One thing I’ve learned here (thanks Pharygula commentariat) is that tone trolls like you-yes, you pharyngsd-complain and whine about the use of these oh-so naughty words, and then so often ignore the content of a comment. You focus on these vewwy vewwy bad words rather than the idea that’s trying to be conveyed. You complain about these terms and want others to not use them. You’re trying to shape the discourse in the direction you want. You want people to adhere to your rules when discussing things.

    Heads up: you are not in charge here. You don’t get to dictate how other people converse with you. You control your words and that’s all. Don’t want to use the word “fuck”? Then don’t. To get petulant and complain about people using vulgar insults though, well, that’s your right, but you won’t get far in the discussion (maybe this is why you’ve followed PZ for years, but never paid attention to the comments).

    The other problem with your pathetic argument is that civility is overrated. Now I think civility has its place, but when you have RWAs talking about how gay people should be denied the right to marry, or about how women’s bodies can’t get pregnant from rape bc they have ways of shutting that down, or fearmongering about “men dressing up so they can harass women in the restroom” (that’s transphobia if you didn’t know)…they do that civilly. They don’t use profanity. Yet the content of their messages are horrifying. It’s bigotry all the way down. It’s denying equality to gay people. To women. To trans*men and women. They’re using such polite words, but their message is horrifying. That’s why civility is overrated.

    If you can’t look past the few harsh words in a comment, and pay attention to the content of the message, then you just need to shut the fuck up and go away you goddamned whiny pissant.

    *many of the words that are taboo are also sex related terms. I’m well aware of how the dominant religions view sex. It’s dirty, filthy, obscene. It’s something that we do bc we’re lowly creatures. It’s beneath the divine. Fucking is shameful in the eyes of the lord. To that I say, FUCK THAT NOISE. Again, as an atheist, I don’t believe in gods, so there’s no higher power to offend when I use a naughty word. Culturally, we’ve been trained to think obscenities are wrong (without ever really analyzing why), so it took some time for me to shake that off. But in the end, as it was with other aspects of being an atheist, once I thought through the implications of non belief, I realize there’s absolutely nothing wrong with saying a hearty FUCK you.

    (wondering if the whiny tone troll will make it this far)

  310. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    If you would agree to keep the conversation civil, I’d be willing to discuss it.

    Who the fuck are you to tell other people how they should act? You are the arrogant and ignorant fool, who makes diagnoses without training, or defining what you mean.
    Grow up, or YOU fade into the bandwidth.

  311. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Pharyngsd, the only reason for a mental illness diagnosis is to hide something else. Only a fool would think otherwise, so what are you trying to cover up?

  312. says

    It started when he was about 8 years old, so I think it’s unlikely he had developed a culturally influenced misogyny at that age.

    I’m trying to decide if this is actually the stupidest thing said on the entire thread so far, or if it just seems that way because tone troll guy is making SUCH a big deal about imperiously handing down statements that they totally, like, know stuff about how the “normal” human mind works.

    They might have spent the first eight years of their life completely cut off from any sort of contact with either humans or any of the stuff humans have created (this would explain a lot about their arguments, actually) but that’s not actually normal. Most people have gotten out from underneath the rock at least a few times by the time they’ve been on the planet for eight entire fucking years.

  313. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    The behaviors of people who have been diagnosed with a mental illness are NOT predictable. The only thing which will aid predictable behavior is past behavior. Seeing a mental health professional only gives that MHP a snapshot of that person at that place in time. If he went to see several, changed them very often, and they didn’t compare notes, then there might have been an indication that he was growing increasingly frustrated. But as long as he kept his suicidal and homicidal ideations hidden, there really was, still, no indication he was a danger to himself or others. So what good does a diagnosis do when the person is uncooperative in helping themselves and hiding their deepest feelings? What good does a diagnosis do to predict the behavior of a group when there are millions of people who have been diagnosed with the same mental illness yet do not all behave or act in the same way? Don’t you think environment plays any role? If not, then you’re biased against a full picture of why this happened, and discovering the remedy is only secondary to obscuring the cause. Utter bullshit.

  314. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    If he went to see several, changed them very often, and they didn’t compare notes, then there wouldn’t have been an indication that he was growing increasingly frustrated. But As long as…

    I really need to quit living up to my nym’s phrase.

  315. Gerard O says

    I can see more clearly the motivations of those questioning my armchair diagnosis of Elliot Rodger. This stems from a belief that I am promoting a Nativist perspective at the expense of Interpersonal/Empiricist interpretations. This is untrue, as I am sympathetic to the ideas of Harry Stack Sullivan (a greater psychoanalyst than Freud) and believe that innatist-essentialist ideas in human affairs can only go so far. My statements regarding Rodger’s misogyny have created a cognitive dissonance that often comes from scientistic mindsets. These commenters cannot comprehend that if a person believes that this is a misogynist hate crime they are not also going to ignore all other aspects of Rodger’s life, including his biological make up — a zero-sum game between Nature and Nurture with no room for grey.

  316. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    These commenters cannot comprehend that if a person believes that this is a misogynist hate crime they are not also going to ignore all other aspects of Rodger’s life, including his biological make up — a zero-sum game between Nature and Nurture with no room for grey.

    What is your point? All I can see is that you were wrong on the internet, had your ass handed to you, and you must still be able to proclaim victory in some fashion in your mind.

    You have no special knowledge of ER’s condition, so you must do what we do. Don’t put something there that we can’t conclusively show is there.

  317. Gerard O says

    Nerd of Redhead #332: Absolutely true! I am so wrong. I made a falsifiable claim which no-one is making any attempt to falsify, some people got shouty and made bizarre and somewhat comical claims (RACIST!) and so I have to bow down to some weirdos who can’t tolerate any dissent from their pre-conceived ideas. I am an animal.

  318. says

    Phayngsyd

    So, he was depressed because his expectations about women’s behavior, which he wouldn’t have had if not for cultural misogyny, were going unmet.

    Possibly. The key thing to note is that he was depressed. It started when he was about 8 years old, so I think it’s unlikely he had developed a culturally influenced misogyny at that age.

    *insert bitter laughter*

    Clearly you’ve never read the accounts of women who’ve been catcalled by 5-year-old boys. If you think that cultural misogyny doesn’t set in by 8 years old then you lack any understanding of psychology, child development, and cultural misogyny.

    To me this says more about misogyny than mental illness. I have been depressed and considered suicide, but I was never diagnosed with a mental illness, nor should I have been. My depression and my thoughts of suicide were situational. They went away when my situation changed.

    His didn’t. He was unhappy, lonely and sad his whole life.

    That’s nice. The point being that depression and suicidal thoughts are not, contrary to your previous assertions, necessarily indications of mental illness. If it’s true, as you say, that he was depressed his whole life, then that pushes the probability more towards the possibility that he was clinically depressed. Of course, it could still be that the situation that was triggering that depression persisted throughout his life. And, again, if he had been clinically depressed, one would think that sometime in years of therapy, someone might have noticed it and tried some treatments. Or maybe he was clinically depressed and just had a series of inattentive therapists. We don’t know. And, since clinical depression is not correlated with violent outbursts (quite the opposite), this speculation does nothing to help us understand why he did what he did. What we do know with reasonable certainty is that whether he was clinically depressed or situationally depressed, cultural misogyny was a major trigger for his depression. As was cultural racism.

    And, I see that neither pharynsyd nor Gerard has responded to my observation that being in therapy for several years WITHOUT a diagnosis is more suggestive of a lack of a diagnosable mental illness than the presence of one.

    Didn’t see your post. Things are a little, uh, “hectic” around here.

    You poor dear.

    Do we know that he did not have a diagnosis? I guess he was never diagnosed with Autism, although there are conflicting reports about that…

    As I recall, a family friend/lawyer is the source of most of the information regarding his mental health treatment. That, and his own reports via his journals. The family friend reported that he had no mental illness diagnosis, that he had been in and out of therapy for several years, and that the family suspected he was on the autism spectrum, but no definitive determination had been made. Of course, that person could be lying or mistaken. So we don’t know that he had no diagnosis. However, that report, coupled with the lack of a positive announcement from any quarter that he did have a diagnosis, suggests that there was none. And to reiterate: my position, like most of the others who have been making things so “hectic” for you, is that it’s hard to say one way or another. Your certainty that he must have been diagnosably ill is unwarranted.

  319. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I made a falsifiable claim which no-one is making any attempt to falsify,

    The falsification should come from you, not us. Where are the third party references to your claim being right?

  320. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Gerard O

    I can see more clearly the motivations of those questioning my armchair diagnosis of Elliot Rodger.

    What a comical lack of self awareness. We’re questioning your armchair diagnosis because it’s a fucking armchair diagnosis, shitwit. You’re not qualified to make it.

    Here’s a tip: we have no more interest in your armchair psychoanalysis of us than we do of your armchair diagnosis of ER.

  321. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    It started when he was about 8 years old, so I think it’s unlikely he had developed a culturally influenced misogyny at that age.

    [sound effect of a needle dragging across an LP of Thriller.]

    What?

    By the time kids are in kindergarten, most have already internalized that men are big, strong and brave, women are small, weak and timid. They already know that boys don’t wear pink. They already know that boys don’t wear skirts or dresses. They already know that there are boy’s toys and girl’s toys and, for a boy to play with a girl’s toy is a good way to get beaten up.

    Additionally, people who get bullied, people who don’t quite fit in, people who are othered, people who are different, people who are not happy will sometimes, not always, but sometimes, look for answers in odd places — cult religions, white supremacist groups, the occult, and, yes, misogyny activism.

    Holy shit, Pharyngsd, are you really this stupid or is this an act?

    Gerard O:

    I can see more clearly the motivations of those questioning my armchair diagnosis of Elliot Rodger.

    So have you got an armchair diagnosis of me? of Nerd? Of anyone here? Should be easier for you — we’re still alive. So an armchair internet diagnosis should be easy.

    Keep in mind, though, that it took about eight months of testing, discussion and observation by multiple psychiatrists and behavioural psychologists before they arrived at a diagnosis for my son. Eight months interacting with the boy and with wife and I. Yet you can do this without ever having met a person? That is the one of the big reasons for rejecting you bullshit. A really big one.

  322. Gerard O says

    I was making a philosophical point, but that’s not important. It’s not even important that Elliot Rodger had Asperger’s (or not). The point is that we examine the real world and draw sensible conclusions about that world based on available evidence, which is more important than anyone having their feelings hurt, including mine. My belief that world-renowned experts in this area would agree with my opinion is nothing to do with winning an argument or an ‘ego trip’, but as close to an objective assessment as I can make.

  323. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    By the by, the two statements, one by Pharyngsd and one by Gerard O, should be near the top of the list for the stupidest sentences in a comment. Ever. Not even sure which is worse.

  324. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Gerard O:

    My belief that world-renowned experts in this area would agree with my opinion is nothing to do with winning an argument or an ‘ego trip’, but as close to an objective assessment as I can make.

    It never even occurs to you that ‘world-renowned experts’ would not even attempt to make an armchair diagnosis?

    I think that one belongs on the list, too.

  325. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    The point is that we examine the real world and draw sensible conclusions about that world based on available evidence,

    Welp. If anyone was uncertain whether Gerard O had quite jumped the shark yet, there should be no more doubt.

  326. Gerard O says

    It’s very strange to get lectured on the amount of time it takes for an Asperger’s diagnosis (Ogvorbis #337). How about 14 YEARS, including sessions with some rated amongst the country’s best. Yep, the very elite failed me, so forgive me if I don’t defer to medical authority.

  327. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The point is that we examine the real world and draw sensible conclusions about that world based on available evidence, which is more important than anyone having their feelings hurt, including mine.

    Then why the WHAAAAA? If you have the training and have talked to ER for an extended time, your insights would be valuable. Since none of that is true, all they are is mental wankery on your part. And we don’t need to listen to mental wankers pretending they deep thinkers.

  328. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Gerard O:

    But you claim to be able to do it, instantly, based on hearsay evidence, a written testimonial, and a youtube video. For someone who is dead. From your armchair. When professionals have a problem making a diagnosis when the person is right fucking there! That is bullshit.

  329. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yep, the very elite failed me, so forgive me if I don’t defer to medical authority.

    And why should we bow to your self-proclaimed authority. I’m not going to do that. Nor should anybody else. Now what?

  330. Gerard O says

    There comes a point where the hivemind dominates to such an extent that people start making statements in support of the tribe that they would baulk at in individual circumstances, and this is where this thread is at. To mock someone for believing in the rule of evidence is something you would be inclined to believe only happened at climate change denial or creationist websites, not the hallowed ground of secular liberalism.

  331. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Yep, the very elite failed me, so forgive me if I put myself forward as the authority instead.

    FIFY.

  332. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Gerard O:

    You have made the claim, without evidence, that you can diagnose complete strangers. And you claim you are the one following evidence? You have also claimed that, since doctors did not diagnose your developmental disability, they are all frauds but you can diagnose Aspergers without meeting the person? And you claim you are following evidence? This is not hivemind. This is people calling bullshit on your diagnostic abilities.

  333. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    To mock someone for believing in the rule of evidence is something you would be inclined to believe only happened at climate change denial or creationist websites, not the hallowed ground of secular liberalism.

    I wasn’t mocking you for believing in the rule of evidence. I was mocking you for thinking you’re drawing sensible conclusions from available evidence as opposed to making bald, evidenceless assertions.

  334. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    There comes a point where the hivemind dominates to such an extent that people start making statements in support of the tribe that they would baulk at in individual circumstances, and this is where this thread is at. To mock someone for believing in the rule of evidence is something you would be inclined to believe only happened at climate change denial or creationist websites, not the hallowed ground of secular liberalism.

    What Hivemind? What pertainent evidence? I have seen nothing to support those claims. I have seen nothing from you to support a diagnosis of ANYBODY.\

    So, what is your problem? We don’t take you seriously? Why should we. Present real third party evidence, and stop this “you must believe me” bullshit.

  335. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Gerard O:

    You made the claim that, since doctors failed you in making a diagnosis, you are able to remotely diagnose developmental disabilities. How do you do this? Is this a recto-cranial diagnostic technique?

  336. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Gerard O

    It’s very strange to get lectured on the amount of time it takes for an Asperger’s diagnosis (Ogvorbis #337). How about 14 YEARS, including sessions with some rated amongst the country’s best. Yep, the very elite failed me, so forgive me if I don’t defer to medical authority.

    So, you defer to your OWN authority? How would you rate your medical knowledge? Is it one of the best? How long did you study and at which school?

  337. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    chigau (違う)

    What an odd flounce.

    He thinks he dropped a bomb. I suppose what he dropped is toxic, but nothing a little plastic baggy couldn’t handle.

  338. pharyngsd says

    SallyStrange

    Your certainty that he must have been diagnosably ill is unwarranted.

    I disagree.

    His lifelong isolation, self proclaimed sadness, loneliness and general unhappiness are very strong indicators of mental illness. Depression, specifically. He was unable to cope with basic interpersonal relationships (by his own admission) and was so emotionally dysfunctional he couldn’t even attend school for several months. He was not “a little sad” for few weeks. This is a lifelong history (10 years or more!) of poor self esteem and abject loneliness.

    By the time he decided to act, he was fully delusional about his “semi divine stature” and was convinced he was on a mission from god to punish all of humanity. Which, in his confused mind, meant to embark on a homicidal rampage in which he would slaughter his three roommates for literally no good reason, and kill as many people as he could..male or female, before he, himself, was killed. I challenge you to put *that* in an axis for a “normal” state of mind.

    That dog just don’t hunt, as some are wont to say.

    In addition to being misogynic (in the most extreme sense) there is simply no question that he was a severely disturbed individual. To determine what “kind” of illness he had would require testing. But he was sick.

    Given what I know about him, if I met Elliot Rodger in a psychiatric hospital, which is exactly where he belonged, I would react with pity and compassion. I wouldn’t simply dismiss him as an extreme misogynist worthy of scorn.

  339. Amphiox says

    Possibly. The key thing to note is that he was depressed. It started when he was about 8 years old, so I think it’s unlikely he had developed a culturally influenced misogyny at that age.

    It is HIGHLY likely that by 8 years old his culturally influenced misogyny was already well developed. Culturally developed misogyny is ingrained from BIRTH. That WHAT IT MEANS to be “culturally developed.”

    The “key” thing is not, was not, and will never be that he was “depressed”. If he was “depressed”, with respect to his murder rampage, it was not key, but minor.

    True clinical depression is more than just about mood and affect, it depresses all mental function globally, including planning, initiative, and volition. Clinical depression, the disease, does not and is not, a “cause” of aggressive behavior of ANY kind, as by its very nature it SUPPRESSES aggressive action. It is a BRAKE on that kind of behavior. Clinical depression can be part of the background of an individual committing an aggressive act, but it is not the “cause” of that aggressive act.

    Even if he was clinically depressed (as opposed to “depressed” as in feeling rotten but not mentally ill), he did not commit his murder rampage because of it. He would have done it IN SPITE of the depression.

    The CAUSE of the murder rampage is the thing that MOTIVATED HIM TO ACT, and that was misogyny. Period.

  340. says

    My statements regarding Rodger’s misogyny have created a cognitive dissonance that often comes from scientistic mindsets.

    What is a scientistic mindset, and how do your statements cause cognitive dissonance for people with that mindset?

    These commenters cannot comprehend that if a person believes that this is a misogynist hate crime they are not also going to ignore all other aspects of Rodger’s life, including his biological make up — a zero-sum game between Nature and Nurture with no room for grey.

    If you are indeed not ignoring the other aspects of Rodger’s life besides his cultural beliefs about women and different races, then you are bucking a very well-established trend. It is certainly possible to simultaneously be positive that Rodger had a mental illness and also believe that cultural beliefs were an important factor in his maladjustedness, but very few people manage to do it. Most of the time, they are trying to divert attention away from cultural beliefs about misogyny, racism, and violence (speaking of cognitive dissonance!).

    Furthermore, unless you have a specific diagnosis in mind that is correlated with violence, you’re offering explanations with no explanatory power. Cultural beliefs seem to offer at least some explanatory power, which is more than anything you’ve come up with so far.

    Also, biological explanations don’t map perfectly to mental illness explanations. Lack of impulse control, which is directly related to proclivities towards violence, has been correlated with biological factors such as smaller than normal prefrontal cortex or low resting pulse rate. It seems that people who commit shockingly violent crimes do have observably different brains from the rest of the population, but people who commit less shockingly violent crimes (one-time murder, domestic violence) don’t show those differences. It’s also worth noting that the same researchers who are in the process of finding and identifying these differences also emphasize that cultural and social experiences can actually alter the structure of the brain.

    Those brain differences haven’t been mapped to our conception of mental illness, though. Should they be? I don’t know. The point is that labeling violent people as mentally ill explains little to nothing of their violence, and adds to the harmful stigma that prevents people from seeking help for mental illnesses in the first place. Until you have something more specific, with more explanatory power, the right thing to do would be to stop harping on it so much.

  341. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    I challenge you to put *that* in an axis for a “normal” state of mind.

    You’re presuppositionally defining “normal” as “not like Elliot Rodger.” Or conflating “normal” with “typical.” Or both. Probably both.

  342. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    In addition to being misogynic (in the most extreme sense) there is simply no question that he was a severely disturbed individual. To determine what “kind” of illness he had would require testing. But he was sick.

    Unevidened diagnosis by an untrained and ignorant person. Dismissed as fuckwittery. It is a statement your sole opinion, and not a statement of fact in any way.

    I wouldn’t simply dismiss him as an extreme misogynist worthy of scorn.

    This has nothing to do with your making a diagnosis. Which you shouldn’t be doing.
    But, since I presented evidence from third parties that mental illness doesn’t exist, and you didn’t refute that with third party evidence of your own, your continued attempts to show mental illness are nothing but fuckwittery.

  343. says

    Number of U.S. troops killed in Afghanistan and Iraq: 6,614.
    Number of women, in the same period, killed as the result of domestic violence in the US: 11,766.

    See also: the Tumblr When Women Refuse collected stories of women who were violently attacked for rejecting a man’s sexual advances. So. Many. Stories.

    I’m curious whether any of the resident psychic psychiatrists here could diagnose for us the killers and attackers behind these statistics with mental illness(es). Oh, wait. I’m not curious, I’m LMAO. Contemptuously.

  344. says

    Two things struck me as profoundly unsettling when I read Rodger’s screed. The first was how intimately familiar his personality was to me. I don’t mean that in some abstract sense. He is a former boss. He is my father. He is my ex. He is my childhood pastor. He is every sexist narcissistic (<—note the small "n") asshole with a colossal sense of entitlement that I've ever had the displeasure of encountering. The second is how Rodger's ideas about women are perfectly mundane and normalized in our personal and political discourse. Consider the sheer scope, content and intensity of harassment campaigns directed at women who dare to question or transgress patriarchal norms, however mildly. I agree with Jessica Valenti, who said:

    Regardless of Rodger’s mental health issues – which we still don’t know much about – his ideas were not “crazy” by the standards of the world today. They are the norm.

    Gender-based sexual violence and domestic violence in the United States are at epidemic levels.

    In short, there is nothing unusual about Elliot Rodger’s misogyny, not even his willingness to take violent action because of it.

  345. ButchKitties says

    Holy circular reasoning, Batman. pharyngsd’s arguments, like the rest of the anti-feminist, pro-othering of the mentally ill brigade can be distilled down to this:

    Why did ER kill people? Because he was mentally ill!

    How do we know he was mentally ill? Because he killed a bunch of people!

  346. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    You’re presuppositionally defining “normal” as “not like Elliot Rodger.”

    It’s not just me. It’s the DSM. He had *plenty* of well understood symptoms, including suicidal ideation, lifelong history of loneliness and social dysfunction, psychotic delusions, social isolation, extreme violent behavior, chronic sadness…he’s a friggin’ walking encyclopedia of maladaptive symptoms indicating some kind of mental illness.

    But turn your statement around and maybe, just maybe you will see how ridiculous your position is…

    Would you define “normal mental health” as “like Elliot Rodger’s mental health?”

    A simple “yes” or “no” would suffice, but I’ll also take “Fuck yes,” or “Fuck no,” if it makes you feel more comfortable.

  347. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    But turn your statement around and maybe, just maybe you will see how ridiculous your position is…

    Show us some real evidence, and not just your word for said evidence, and you won’t appear so ridiculous. Starting with the definition of “mental illness”.

  348. Nick Gotts says

    pharngsd@364,

    But as several people have been attempting to get through to you, the correct answer is “Don’t know”.

  349. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    It’s not just me. It’s the DSM. He had *plenty* of well understood symptoms, including suicidal ideation, lifelong history of loneliness and social dysfunction, psychotic delusions, social isolation, extreme violent behavior, chronic sadness…he’s a friggin’ walking encyclopedia of maladaptive symptoms indicating some kind of mental illness.

    Nobody is denying he had symptoms. None of those symptoms is indicative of any particular disorder to the exclusion of all others which is why you’re still waffling about “some kind of mental illness” more than 300 fucking posts after your first appearance in this thread. As if “some kind of mental illness” has any explanatory power at all.

    A simple “yes” or “no” would suffice, but I’ll also take “Fuck yes,” or “Fuck no,” if it makes you feel more comfortable.

    Your passive-aggressive tone trolling is becoming tiresome.

  350. PatrickG says

    @ButchKitties:

    How do we know he was mentally ill? Because he killed a bunch of people!

    Actually, pharyngsd’s method for testing this is slightly more sophisticated. Diagnosis, you see, should be done by public opinion. Specifically, mental illness is determined by asking random people on the street what mental illness is. If that doesn’t satisfy our notion of clinical diagnosis, we should just take his word for it.

    Yep, pharyngsd actually said that, at #220. That’s only one of the scintillating gems of blithering idiocy spewed in this thread, interspersed with adorable whines about how Rude™ people are, and just the cutest lil’ complaints that no one will engage with their Logic™.

    I’m not sure if pharyngsd’s performance here is comedy, tragedy, or farce. It’s definitely been fascinating, though.

  351. ButchKitties says

    Diagnosis, you see, should be done by public opinion. Specifically, mental illness is determined by asking random people on the street what mental illness is. If that doesn’t satisfy our notion of clinical diagnosis, we should just take his word for it.

    I just asked the first 10 people on the street if they thought this mole on my neck looked cancerous, and 7 of the 10 did. The actual biopsy said it was benign, but I’m going to start chemo anyway. So glad he set me straight on how medical diagnosis works.

  352. says

    Gerard O:

    I can see more clearly the motivations of those questioning my armchair diagnosis of Elliot Rodger.

    So you’re able to tell that many of us don’t think you’re qualified to make a diagnosis of ER bc you’re not a qualified mental health professional, haven’t interacted with him, and he’s dead? Congratulations, you can read.

  353. pharyngsd says

    Nick

    But as several people have been attempting to get through to you, the correct answer is “Don’t know”.

    Do you feel you have to be a trained auto-mechanic to know that there is “something” wrong with your car when all the red lights on the dashboard are lit, it won’t start and smoke is pouring out of the engine compartment?

    Do you have to be an M.D. to suspect your child is “likely” to have an illness if she has a temperature of 103 and is coughing up blood?

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of mental illness when he expressed a *lifelong* sense of sadness, loneliness, lacked the ability to cope with the most simple interpersonal relationships, and was literally incapacitated by his poor self esteem, I think you are just being argumentative.

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of illness when he professed a delusion that he was on a mission from god to punish humanity resulting in a homicidal shooting spree, I think you’re using a definition of “normal mental health”, that I am unfamiliar with.

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of mental illness when he murdered his three roommates for completely irrational reasons, I think your cognitive assessment skills are dangerously conservative.

    Finally, if you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of mental illness when he he expressed a lifelong sense of sadness, loneliness, lacked the ability to cope with the most simple interpersonal relationships, was literally incapacitated by his poor self esteem AND he professed a delusion that he was on a mission from god to punish humanity that resulted in a homicidal shooting spree AND murdered his three roommates for completely irrational reasons, well…what *would* it take to arouse your suspicions?

    Rodger’s symptoms were outlandish. Way over the top.

    Do you really think the defining characteristic of his mental condition was misogyny? Because he was misogynic his delusions (and host of other obvious maladaptive symptoms) are irrelevant? They can be safely ignored as inconclusive until a trained professional performs the proper screening tests and aligns the symptoms with a mental illness as outlined in the DSM? You don’t even *suspect* that he might align with some mental illness?

    That sort of like saying, “Yes, I know smoke is pouring out of the car’s engine compartment, there are numerous red lights flashing on the dashboard and the turn signals won’t shut off, but see? The gas gauge is reading ‘empty.’ A car can be out of gas for perfectly ordinary reasons, so until a trained mechanic does a full analysis, I “don’t know” if there’s anything really wrong with the car.”

    It’s just absurd.

  354. says

    Gerard O @338:

    The point is that we examine the real world and draw sensible conclusions about that world based on available evidence, which is more important than anyone having their feelings hurt, including mine.

    Very few people in this thread are qualified to assess the mental health of others, even dead people. The few people who may be mental health professionals never met ER, so they can’t diagnose him either. Even if there were available evidence, most of the people here-including you-are not qualified to make any determination of ER’s mental health.
    Are you asserting that you’re a mental health professional able to diagnose dead people you’ve never encountered?
    If you’re not a mental health professional, what qualifies you to assess the mental health of others?
    If mental health diagnoses of dead people can be made online by people lacking qualifications, why does anyone seek degrees in psychiatry?
    Your arrogance is astounding.

    My belief that world-renowned experts in this area would agree with my opinion is nothing to do with winning an argument or an ‘ego trip’, but as close to an objective assessment as I can make.

    This belief is faulty. This is not how mental health assessments are made. Even if you could find “world renowned experts” to agree with you, it wouldn’t amount to shit. They haven’t examined ER either. Their opinions would be slightly more informed than yours bc they’re relevant authorities on the subject, but without direct contact with ER, their statements on his mental health carry little weight. More than yours, to be sure, but not enough to reach any reasonable conclusion on his mental health.
    You really don’t understand how diagnoses are made. You, like pharyngsd are applying a layperson’s understanding of a complex subject, and acting like you both understand it and are qualified to speak on the subject.

    Again, your arrogance is astounding.

  355. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Do you feel you have to be a trained auto-mechanic to know that there is “something” wrong with your car when all the red lights on the dashboard are lit, it won’t start and smoke is pouring out of the engine compartment?

    When your car behaves like that, do you Google the symptoms and guess at what specifically is wrong or do you take it to the garage and let the trained mechanic decide what needs to be done?

  356. says

    Gerard O:

    There comes a point where the hivemind dominates to such an extent that people start making statements in support of the tribe that they would baulk at in individual circumstances, and this is where this thread is at.

    I haven’t seen the hivemind whine trotted out in a while.
    People like you have the hardest time understanding that multiple like minded individuals can reach the same conclusions independently. You think there must be some sort of group think. Despite there being no evidence of such.
    Stop the presses: several people online are part of a loose community and share many of the same values. Must be a hivemind. There’s no other way.

    To mock someone for believing in the rule of evidence is something you would be inclined to believe only happened at climate change denial or creationist websites, not the hallowed ground of secular liberalism.

    The “rule of evidence”?
    You have *no* evidence. You have a manifesto and videos. That’s insufficient evidence to reach a conclusion of the mental health of anyone. That’s not how diagnoses are made. You’ve expressed an opinion about the mental health of Elliot Rodger that you are not qualified to make. That’s not following any rule of evidence. You deserve all the mockery you’ve received.

  357. pharyngsd says

    PatrickG

    Yep, pharyngsd actually said that, at #220.

    You see, it’s just this kind of analysis that should give you pause when you think you understand what I, or anyone else, is trying to say.

    Just because I’m feeling generous, I’ll clue you in.

    That post was in direct response to a previous post wherein it was suggested that I take somebody’s word for the truth, rather than evidence backed up with some kind of citation. The person in question had been badgering me for official citations to back up certain statements I had made, and then proceeded to refuse to provide citations for a statement *he* made (a request that was made in jest, btw, meant to highlight his constant demands for citations) and just take his word for it.

    The whole thing was a joke, or a lesson in hypocrisy, if you prefer.

    Since you completely failed to comprehend a simple exchange on a random blog site, how do you feel about your ability to discern Rodger’s actual state of mind?

  358. says

    pharyngsd:

    Would you define “normal mental health” as “like Elliot Rodger’s mental health?”

    I personally don’t know anything about ER’s mental health. I do know that murdering people, as horrible as that is, is part of a range of activities that humans have engaged in. Neurotypical people have killed others quite often throughout human history.
    I also know that misogyny, racism, and toxic masculinity are the source of a lot of social problems.
    I also know that violence as a means of achieving a goal or resolving a conflict is actively promoted around the world, even (and especially) in the United States. Not enough people, certainly not people in power, embrace non-violent means of conflict resolution.
    Furthermore, I know that in trying to resolve conflicts or achieve goals, a staggering number of people turn to the use of guns.
    All of that offers a much better explanation for ER’s actions that baseless speculation of his mental state that none of us knows.

    Of course, you’ll continue to ignore these points, like you have every other time they’ve been brought up bc you have a narrative you’re following and refuse to budge an inch.

    BTW, did you read my comment about obscenities?

  359. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Do you feel you have to be a trained auto-mechanic to know that there is “something” wrong with your car when all the red lights on the dashboard are lit, it won’t start and smoke is pouring out of the engine compartment?

    Nothing to do with anything other than having an opinion. Which need not by shared by anyone else. Same with all your other attempts to evade the need for solid definitions and training to make the call of a expert “yes, there is something wrong”
    What is wrong with ER? Nothing that is something an untrained person can put their fingers on, as many of his problems and beliefs are shared, and almost all of those with the same beliefs and problems are not mentally ill. What is special with ER? What is “mental illness”?

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of illness when he professed a delusion that he was on a mission from god to punish humanity resulting in a homicidal shooting spree, I think you’re using a definition of “normal mental health”, that I am unfamiliar with.

    What specific diagnosis of mental illness did he have, that separated him from soldiers? We’ve been over this before. Nothing stands out. So, what is YOUR PROBLEM?

    Rodger’s symptoms were outlandish. Way over the top.

    Conclusion by and untrained, arrogant, and ignorant fuckwit. Dismissed as fuckwittery.

    Do you really think the defining characteristic of his mental condition was misogyny?

    Doen’t matter at all. YOU don’t make the conclusion, and expect us to agree with you. We don’t have to agree with you. I’ve been telling you what you need to do to begin to get us to agree with you. Start by defining “mental illness”, and then refute my citations that “mental illness doesn’t exist with your own citations. In other words, shut the fuck up with inane and ignorant opinions, and point to the mental health science to make your case.

  360. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    371
    pharyngsd

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of mental illness when he expressed a *lifelong* sense of sadness, loneliness, lacked the ability to cope with the most simple interpersonal relationships, and was literally incapacitated by his poor self esteem, I think you are just being argumentative.

    Hey asshole, some people’s lives suck, like totally. I haven’t been officially diagnosed with clinical depression because they don’t know if it’s situational, since my life has always sucked. Shit happens, doesn’t mean he’s mentally ill even if it’s a lifelong affliction. Just means that instead of properly coping with his issues (everybody has them, don’t you know) he reached into a community which applauded his faulty reasoning (i.e. it’s all women’s fault).

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of illness when he professed a delusion that he was on a mission from god to punish humanity resulting in a homicidal shooting spree, I think you’re using a definition of “normal mental health”, that I am unfamiliar with.

    So, you’ve changed your mind on religiously motivated killers as being mentally ill?

    If you “don’t know” if Rodger’s had some kind of mental illness when he murdered his three roommates for completely irrational reasons, I think your cognitive assessment skills are dangerously conservative.

    People kill people all the time, and I’ll bet, except for self-defense, it’s all irrational. Killing over love and money is fucking irrational but you’re not championing that all killers are mentally ill because they have faulty reasoning, are you?

    So, nope. Doesn’t look mentally ill. Looks like every other asshole killing women for misogynist reasons. It’s a fucking epidemic. The only difference between ER and the rest, is that he killed several all at one time instead of slowly throughout the years.

  361. says

    pharyngsd:

    That post was in direct response to a previous post wherein it was suggested that I take somebody’s word for the truth, rather than evidence backed up with some kind of citation. The person in question had been badgering me for official citations to back up certain statements I had made, and then proceeded to refuse to provide citations for a statement *he* made (a request that was made in jest, btw, meant to highlight his constant demands for citations) and just take his word for it.

    Still misrepresenting what I said.
    Again, what I said was

    A citation to prove that it’s not helpful to speculate about whether or not a dead person was mentally ill? I’m not sure what kind of citation that would be, but people in this thread (myself included) have explained why it’s not helpful to speculate.

    I never refused to put forth a citation. I said I did not know what kind of citation that would be. I was putting forth an argument, using logic, that it is unhelpful to speculate on the mental health of a dead person. Furthermore, I’ve argued in this thread that speculating on the mental health of others causes splash damage to those with mental illnesses *and* that there’s no explanatory power behind labeling ERs actions as mentally ill. You conveniently have ignored those.
    You’re back to being a dishonest fuckwit. Though I guess you never stopped.

  362. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    That post was in direct response to a previous post wherein it was suggested that I take somebody’s word for the truth, rather than evidence backed up with some kind of citation.

    The thing you had asked for a citation for was the claim that speculating about Elliot Rodger’s mental state wasn’t useful. You want a citation? This fucking thread. We’re up to 378 posts and we’re still on “some kind of mental illness.”

  363. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Since you completely failed to comprehend a simple exchange on a random blog site, how do you feel about your ability to discern Rodger’s actual state of mind?

    We here can’t do that. We aren’t trained mental health professionals, and can’t make any call other than ignorant personal opinion, which is meaningless to any SCIENTIFIC discussion.
    Your problem is that you think your opinion is fact. We have been asking you to define everything, and make it scientific, not from ignorance. You refuse. You are entitled to your opinion. But we are entitled not to be badgered and bullied to have to agree with you. You have nothing cogent to offer in this case. You can’t even define your terms. You can’t/won’t cite something to show “mental illness” even exists. Common knowledge is not good enough when dealing with medicine or science, with their special vocabularies.
    That you miss the fact you have been bullying us for days isn’t missed by us. We laugh at your arrogance and ignorance.

  364. ButchKitties says

    horstman @225

    Oh, and suicide (or suicidal behavior) doesn’t actually suggest insanity/mental illness; that’s only true if you assume that wanting to exist as long as possible under any and all circumstances is a universal human value*, which it very much is not.

    This is an excellent point.

    Matching a behavior to the DSM does not mean mental illness. One thing that came up over and over again when I was reading the psychiatric report for Anders Breivik was that sometimes scores/results/ideas that would otherwise indicate mental illness can also be explained by membership in a specific subculture or religion. To reference an earlier discussion, the difference between mass murder and war is the fact that soldiers are surrounded by other soldiers who are all participating in the same thing. They are immersed in a culture that is reinforcing their actions. They have people to tell them that they’re the good guys.

    Mass murderers don’t get reinforcement from society. There is no organized mass murderer subculture. But AB did participate in a subculture that reinforced his beliefs about race, and ER did participate in a subculture that reinforced his misogyny. Racially motivated violence and gendered violence are established phenomena, much more so than mentally ill people becoming violent because of their mental illness.

  365. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    When your car behaves like that, do you Google the symptoms and guess at what specifically is wrong or do you take it to the garage and let the trained mechanic decide what needs to be done?

    You know why I stick with you Seven? Because sometimes you ask questions that provide really good illumination on the issue.

    In this case, I think you have asked a question that will absolutely, positively bring you around to my way of thinking on this subject.

    But first, I’ll answer your question: I am so incompetent when it comes to mechanical things, I don’t bother with Google. I take it to a trained mechanic.

    Ok. Here comes my return. Brace yourself…

    Ready?

    No really, ready?

    Ok: “Why did ER’s parents take him to a trained professional?

    I’ll answer it for you: “Because they thought there was something wrong with him.”

    Boom!

    And now the *real* clincher: “Why did a trained professional prescribe anti-psychotic medication to ER?

    Again: “Because she thought there was something wrong with him.”

    DOUBLE BOOM!

    If ER’s parents and a trained professional thought that ER had some kind of mental “issues,” don’t you think it’s reasonable for me to suspect the same? *Especially* in light of his subsequent behavior?

  366. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Ok: “Why did ER’s parents take him to a trained professional?

    I’ll answer it for you: “Because they thought there was something wrong with him.”

    Boom!

    And now the *real* clincher: “Why did a trained professional prescribe anti-psychotic medication to ER?

    Again: “Because she thought there was something wrong with him.”

    DOUBLE BOOM!

    Your idiocy knows no bounds. Nobody in this thread has, at any point, denied that he had symptoms which would warrant a trip to a therapist. The difference between us and you is that we’re not laboring under the delusion that that’s a useful observation.

  367. Amphiox says

    Do you really think the defining characteristic of his mental condition was misogyny?

    The defining characteristic of his MURDEROUS RAMPAGE was misogyny.

    Whether or not he had or had not had some kind of mental illness is as irrelevant to the main question as whether or not he had a trigger finger (without which he could not have performed his killings).

  368. JAL: Snark, Sarcasm & Bitterness says

    If ER’s parents and a trained professional thought that ER had some kind of mental “issues,” don’t you think it’s reasonable for me to suspect the same? *Especially* in light of his subsequent behavior?

    Except his supposed mental issues has nothing to do with his spree. Can you actually name a spree killer that went off because they were off their medication?

  369. Maureen Brian says

    So, there are 3 room-mates. ER is concerned that they might prevent him going on his planned killing spree at the sorority house so he kills them – one at a time, silently so as not to draw attention – before setting out on his mission.

    In the context that’s entirely rational – planned and carried out calmly in order to let him achieve some other and “greater” purpose. You know, like the My Lai Massacre or bumping off Patrice Lumumba.

    Take your attempted arguments to their logical conclusions, pharynsd, and everyone on the planet is mad. Except you! But sadly we only have your word for that. So, no evidence at all.

  370. PatrickG says

    Since you completely failed to comprehend a simple exchange on a random blog site, how do you feel about your ability to discern Rodger’s actual state of mind?

    Your continued search for irrelevancy turns up new treasure with each passing moment. Why do you care about my ability to discern Rodger’s “actual state of mind”? I’m not a psychiatrist. I didn’t see Rodger in a therapeutic setting. Thus, my opinion is kind of beside the point.

    Diddums, you continue to seem to think that we’re all arguing that Rodger could not have suffered from mental illness. Pro tip, dude, you’re completely off your ass here. We just have actual standards for how that determination should be made. You don’t. We get it. No, really, we get it.

    That’s what’s so laughable about your performance here, by the way. Your entire argument rests on the assumption that Rodger must have been mentally ill because his actions weren’t “normal”, as defined by you in tortuous and irrational ways. You’ve been pretty clear throughout this entire thread that “normal” behavior is defined by your perception of what “normal” people consider typical.

    Your mental-health-by-person-on-the-street method of diagnosis merely underscored what you’ve been saying in this entire thread, and hence, I mock you using that example. Because damn, it was just so stupid it still makes me giggle uncontrollably.

    Also, if you haven’t noticed, I haven’t made a single claim about Rodger’s “actual state of mind”. I’ve only mocked your pretensions at neurochemistry and psychiatry. Until now, I haven’t even bothered engaging with you directly. Just a hint: that’s because I hold you and your argument in utter contempt. :)

    Anyhoo, back to work. I’ll be picturing pharyngsd running down the street brandishing a copy of the DSM-V and chanting ‘Mental illness! Mental illness!’, while all the random people on the street start thinking maybe they should call the cops to have this guy locked up. *giggles some more*

  371. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    If ER’s parents and a trained professional thought that ER had some kind of mental “issues,” don’t you think it’s reasonable for me to suspect the same? *Especially* in light of his subsequent behavior?

    Irrelevant as usual. They didn’t see him as the “normal” son they wanted. So off to the mechanic for a “tune-up”. It appears the mechanics found nothing wrong. Why do you find something wrong, and why is it so damn important for your do so?
    It isn’t important to me to find ER “mentally ill”, since I can’t even define the term. I have no problem with “I don’t know”. Which is what everybody but his therapist(s) should be saying.

    Try it: “I don’t know”.

  372. Amphiox says

    It’s not just me. It’s the DSM. He had *plenty* of well understood symptoms, including suicidal ideation, lifelong history of loneliness and social dysfunction, psychotic delusions, social isolation, extreme violent behavior, chronic sadness…he’s a friggin’ walking encyclopedia of maladaptive symptoms indicating some kind of mental illness.

    Totally and utterly irrelevant, as whatever kind of mental illness he may or may not have had, it WAS NOT THE CAUSE OF HIS RAMPAGE.

    Because there ARE NO MENTAL ILLNESSES in the DSM or any other source, that are “causes” of murderous rampages.

    And speculation/diagnosis by untrained individuals about a private citizen’s mental health (or any other health issue – would you be so glib to speculate as to whether or not ER suffered from a frontal brain tumor? All the symptoms you ascribe to him are fully consistent with that diagnosis too) without said individual’s or his family’s explicit informed consent is in fact a violation of their right to privacy, and quite unethical.

  373. says

    Seven of Mine @381:
    pharyngsd, xe did mention this gem:

    Having said that, I have stated previously that he probably suffered from a personality disorder. Specifically, “Narcissistic Personality Disorder.”

    Couple of problems with this-
    1- personality disorders and mental illnesses aren’t the same thing. I’m unclear if pharyngsd is conflating the two, though I suspect xe is in this case.
    2- that still means jack shit. Xe is unqualified to make this assessment.
    3- unless xe is prepared to say that NPD causes people to lash out violently and go on killing sprees (which would require evidence, and xe has produced precious little of that in this thread), such a “diagnosis” isn’t helpful.

  374. says

    pharyngsd:

    Ok. Here comes my return. Brace yourself…

    Ready?

    No really, ready?

    Ok: “Why did ER’s parents take him to a trained professional?

    I’ll answer it for you: “Because they thought there was something wrong with him.”

    Boom!

    And now the *real* clincher: “Why did a trained professional prescribe anti-psychotic medication to ER?

    Again: “Because she thought there was something wrong with him.”

    DOUBLE BOOM!

    If ER’s parents and a trained professional thought that ER had some kind of mental “issues,” don’t you think it’s reasonable for me to suspect the same? *Especially* in light of his subsequent behavior?

    You’re asserting that he had a mental illness. Moreover, you continue to ignore the fact that there are a large number of reasons people go to therapists, and many of them are not related to mental illnesses.
    I even cited several of them. Here, again, since you’re clearly not reading the responses directed to you (even though not all of them are laced with words that hurt your fee fees):

    People pursue counseling and therapy for a variety of reasons. Some may enter therapy to address major life changes, such as divorce, and others may seek help in managing mental health conditions, like depression. There’s a common misconception that people who go to therapy are “crazy,” when in fact, most therapy clients are ordinary people struggling with common, everyday issues.
    http://www.goodtherapy.org/therapy-issues.html#

    Even if one were to agree that there was something “wrong” with ER, that does not mean that he had a mental illness.

    Reasons people go to therapy (from the link above):
    ADHD
    Bullying
    Creative Blocks
    Divorce
    Emotional Abuse
    Family Problems
    Grief
    Health Issues
    Identity Issues
    Jealousy
    LGBT Issues
    Mood Swings
    OCD
    Paranoia
    Religious Issues
    Self-Esteem
    Trust Issues
    Worthlessness
    Young Adult Issues
    (and more)

    Given all the reasons that people in general (and ER specifically) seek therapy, it is flat out wrong to assert or hint that people who do so have mental health problems (unless you expand mental health problems to such a degree that *every* human being has them, and then it becomes pointless to claim ER was suffering from a mental health problem that led to his actions)

  375. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Pharyngsd:

    And now the *real* clincher: “Why did a trained professional prescribe anti-psychotic medication to ER?

    Again: “Because she thought there was something wrong with him.”

    My son was, for about 3 years, on Risperdol, an antipsychotic medication. Why? Because it helped him control some of his repetitive actions which were symptoms of his autism spectrum diagnosis. So he was not mentally ill. He was not psychotic. He is autistic (mildly). You really have no fucking clue what you are talking about, do you? Why is it so important, to you, that E. Rodgers was mentall ill? Why is it so important, to you, that societal influences — gun worship, violence worship, misogyny, patriarchy — were not part of the fatal equation?

  376. PatrickG says

    You [pharyngsd] really have no fucking clue what you are talking about, do you?

    That’s certainly become abundantly clear. :)

  377. pharyngsd says

    Ogvorbis

    So he was not mentally ill.

    I’m defining mental illness as diagnosis that would appear in the DSM-V. Meaning that the person is suffering from a condition that some form of psychiatric intervention would be appropriate.

    Autism appears in the DSM-V as a “spectrum disorder.”

    I realize that there may be negative connotations around the term “mental illness.” To me, personally, a mental illness is no more stigmatizing than a physical illness. So I sometimes use the words “mental illness” when perhaps “mental disorder” or some other more clinical term would be more appropriate. No offense meant.

    The fact that a trained professional would prescribe an anti-psychotic medication to Rodger suggests that there was some kind of a real psychiatric problem.

    It’s been my contention from the beginning that Rodger’s had symptoms indicating some kind of mental illness (or mental disorder if you prefer), that would align with a diagnosis in the DSM-V. That was before I saw his manifesto and saw that his depressive symptoms were chronic, severe and often completely debilitating. It was also before I knew that he had a delusion that he was semi-divine and needed to “punish” all of humanity.

    I have no doubts at all that if ER had recorded that video and showed it to his therapist (before embarking on his killing spree) that he would have been locked up in a psychiatric hospital that very day.
    Wouldn’t you agree?

  378. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    The difference between us and you is that we’re not laboring under the delusion that that’s a useful observation.

    It’s a useful observation in that it supports my position that he had some kind of a mental illness. Which is all we’re discussing.

    Neither is his lifelong depression.
    Neither is his delusion.

    A trained professional gets Rodger as a patient as prescribes anti-psychotic medication. And you don’t think this is indicative of some kind of condition that warrants psychiatric intervention. I guess you must think his therapist was incompetent.

    You’ve been begging for a data point from a trained professional, his parents concerns notwithstanding, and here’s one staring you right in the face. You can choose to ignore it. I don’t.

  379. pharyngsd says

    Whether or not he had or had not had some kind of mental illness is as irrelevant to the main question as whether or not he had a trigger finger (without which he could not have performed his killings).

    That has not been established.

    You know, it’s interesting how so many people can blithely make the claim that mental illness played no part in the killing without one shred of evidence, and yet I simply make the statement that he was likely suffering from a mental illness (with plenty of supporting evidence, not the least of which is that he was suffering from a psychotic delusion) and it’s “Katy bar the door” on righteous indignation.

    It’s a funny world we live in.

  380. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    pharyngsd:

    Now you are just plain lying. You stated, unequivocally, that, since Rodger’s doctor prescribed an antipsychotic medication, this was proof, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Rodger’s was mentally ill. I pointed out a case, known to me, in which an antipsychotic medication was prescribed to someone with Aspergers to show that someone taking antipsychotic medications does not mean they are mentally ill. And then you state:

    I’m defining mental illness as diagnosis that would appear in the DSM-V. Meaning that the person is suffering from a condition that some form of psychiatric intervention would be appropriate.

    No fucking shit, you lying asshole. That is what I, and others, have been writing. Just because someone was referred for therapy, because someone was given a medication from a certain class of drugs, does not mean that person was mentally ill.

    He may have been but there is no evidence that shows he definitely was mentally ill (that would require a specific diagnosis — and I note that despite your damn-near worship of the DSMIV, you have not specified your diagnosis). Rodgers is dead so there is no way to know. What we do know, from his manifesto, was that he worshiped guns (which is mainstream US culture), was extremely misogynist (again, mainstream US culture), thought violence solved everything (which is mainstream US culture), wanted to go out in a blaze of glory like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (mainstream US culture), and didn’t like his life (again, mainstream US culture). But you insist, despite there being no way of knowing, that gun culture, misogynist activism, violence for violence sake, and ‘the ain’t gonna take me alive’ can all be safely ignored (unless they support your ability to diagnose the mental condition of a dead man).

    To me, personally, a mental illness is no more stigmatizing than a physical illness

    Well goody for you. I know people who have lost their security clearance because of repeated depressive episodes — not even clinical depression. I know that the first time I tried to get the government to recognize that I may have PTSD thanks to civilian government service, I was told that if that was in my records, I would never be promoted or transferred. You may claim that there is no stigma attached to mental illnesses for you and that is wonderful (especially considering how fucking quick you are to brand total strangers about whom you know next to nothing as mentally ill) but yes, there is a societal stigma to mental illness. For men, it shows that the man is weak, he didn’t tough it out, he’s not man enough, he didn’t man up. For women, it shows that they are fragile, need to be protected, shouldn’t be allowed to think for themselves, shouldn’t be treated as adults.

    As for Elliot Rodgers, I did not know him. I have no way of knowing his mental state. I have known men like him, though. And guess what? They are normal pillars of the community in late 20th and early 21st century America. Rodgers’ attitudes were normal. All of them (even being dissatisfied with his life and knowing that someone else (in his case women) were at fault.

    So keep right on going. Keep piling on to those who have suffered from mental illness or developmental disabilities. Punching down is easy for you, isn’t it?

    But I really want an answer to this question:

    Why is it so important, to you, that E. Rodgers was mentall ill? Why is it so important, to you, that societal influences — gun worship, violence worship, misogyny, patriarchy, blaming others for his unhappiness — were not part of the fatal equation?

  381. says

    pharyngsd:

    It’s a useful observation in that it supports my position that he had some kind of a mental illness. Which is all we’re discussing.

    Other than supporting your opinion (and I’m not sure it even does that), it has no utility.
    How does “ER had a mental illness” offer explanatory power? It’s not an explanation for his killing spree, bc even *if* he had a mental illness, there’s still no link between having some random mental illness (again, you’ve not defined it) and going on killing rampages.
    How does it allow us to predict who will go on the next killing spree? Unless you’re trying to say that people with this unknown mental illness (remember that personality disorders are not mental illnesses) have a propensity for violence. Of course that opens a whole ‘nother can of worms.

    Your pet theory doesn’t explain squat. It doesn’t illuminate ERs actions.
    The socio-cultural theories put forth, however, do illuminate his actions. They also help us understand what can be done to combat these problems. But again, you’re not interested in this explanation bc you think “ER had a mental illness” tells us anything useful.

    Aaand you probably won’t read this either, so I don’t know why I bothered. You wanted obscenity free responses with overrate civility, which I’ve given several times, but you won’t acknowledge them. You also won’t acknowledge that you misrepresented what I said upthread.

  382. says

    You know, it’s interesting how so many people can blithely make the claim that mental illness played no part in the killing without one shred of evidence, and yet I simply make the statement that he was likely suffering from a mental illness (with plenty of supporting evidence, not the least of which is that he was suffering from a psychotic delusion) and it’s “Katy bar the door” on righteous indignation.

    Until you establish that he *did* have a mental illness, and that said mental illness was a factor in the killings, you can’t assume that mental illness played a role.
    You’re arguing from ignorance, and you’re shocked that others aren’t playing along.

  383. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    You know, it’s interesting how so many people can blithely make the claim that mental illness played no part in the killing without one shred of evidence, and yet I simply make the statement that he was likely suffering from a mental illness (with plenty of supporting evidence, not the least of which is that he was suffering from a psychotic delusion) and it’s “Katy bar the door” on righteous indignation.,

    Oh, no you don’t. No one here has said that there is no possible way that mental illness played a part. What we have been saying is that while we know, from his video and manifesto, about the cultural and societal influences that had a hand in his decision to commit murder, we have no way of knowing if he was mentally ill or not. We do not know. We know about the societal influences. We will never know if he was mentally ill.

    Why is this important?

    Think about those who credit gods with everything. Diversity? Goddidit. Geology? Goddidit. Morality? Goddidit. Everything? Goddidit. Which means that there is no reason to investigate, no reason to follow the clues to find out more. There is already a pat answer which means that no one has to actually look at evidence and reality. By claiming that Rodgers suffered from mental illness, and that explains why he did what he did how he did it, you are, essentially saying ‘Goddidit!’ and there is no reason to go further.

    There are clues that show some evidence that there were problems, big problems, in Rodgers’ life. There is no evidence that he was diagnosed with a mental illness. There is no evidence that he was mentally ill. Everything that he says in his video and manifesto, and everything that he did, has been said and done my people who are not mentally ill.

    This is simple shit. Occam’s Razor: do not multiply entities without necessity. You are inventing an entity — mental illness — which can already be explained through evidence — societal influences.

    Please stop lying. Please stop erecting straw people. Please actually read what we fucking write you sanctimonious asshole!

  384. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’m defining mental illness as diagnosis that would appear in the DSM-V. Meaning that the person is suffering from a condition that some form of psychiatric intervention would be appropriate.

    Unless you cite the page or organizational number, this is a meaningless definition. This requires an ACTUAL DIAGNOSIS BY A TRAINED MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONAL. Your arrogant and ignorant opinion is irrelevant to that diagnosis. That is what many of us have been arguing all along, you can’t, and ergo, shouldn’t even attempt to make that call.

    Why is it important to you make it “mental illness”? The only reasons that have come forward, is “othering”, attempting to show and say “that can’t be me or anybody I know”. Or it is trying it mitigate the damage to one of the contributing factors to the spree, like the availability of handguns or rampant misogyny. If you have another reason, state it. Or shut the fuck up.

  385. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    It’s a useful observation in that it supports my position that he had some kind of a mental illness.

    1) No, fuckwit, it doesn’t. Tony has helpfully provided you with links to information about the many and varied reasons people visit therapists. Many of the rest of us have also made this observation. You can’t claim a fact as evidence for any one position unless you can show it’s more likely under that explanation than any other.

    2) Even if I were to concede that to you for the sake of argument, “some kind of mental illness” is still not useful because it sheds no light on why Rodger killed. Because there is no causal link between mental illness and violence.

    3) Ogvorbis just told you above that Risperdol is often prescribed to autistic people to help them control certain behaviors. I’ve also pointed that out and others may have as well. Just like with the fact that he saw a therapist, you haven’t shown that this fact is better explained by your position than any other.

  386. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    I can’t blockquote today. Only the first line of #406 should be a block quote. All the rest is me.

  387. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    Because there is no causal link between mental illness and violence.

    Don’t you ever get tired of being wrong?

    From http://www.ehu.es/echeburua/pdfs/Violence%20and%20PD.pdf

    From the abstract:

    “Several studies have provided strong evidence that personality disorders (PD) represent a significant clinical risk for violence. This review has aimed to examine the relationship of greater risk for violence among persons with certain PD in terms of four fundamental personality dimensions: 1) impulse control; 2) affect regulation; 3) threatened egotism or narcissism; and 4) paranoid cognitive personality style. Two of these dimensions -impulse control and affect regulation- are probably substantially affected
    by virtually all PDs linked to violence. Narcissism or threatened egotism and paranoid cognitive personality style have also been empirically linked to violence and mental disorder. PD symptoms have proven to be even stronger predictors of violence than the PDs per se. In fact, increased symptoms of DSM-IV cluster A or cluster B PD, such as paranoid, narcissistic and antisocial PD symptoms, correlate
    significantly with violence.”

    From the introduction:

    “The clinical and legal-criminal importance of personality disorders (PD) in serious and violent behaviors is unquestionable.”

  388. says

    (I can’t believe this thread has gotten up to 408 comments…all bc one person continues to make unproven assumptions)
    Here’s something interesting from pharyngsd’s link @408:

    In summary, it can be stated that more rigorous studies
    are needed to truly know the influence of the PDs in violent
    behavior and the true dangerousness of these subjects.
    Although the diagnosis of PD is a risk factor of recurrence in
    all the protocols in use of evaluation of risk,14, 15 the following
    realities must be kept in mind: 1) most of those suffering from
    PD are not violent and never have been; 2) many abnormal
    personalities are more propitious victims then delinquents; 3)
    no PD is necessarily associated to violent behavior permanently,
    and 4) from a dynamic and motivational position, PD alone
    cannot explain violent behavior.

  389. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    From the actual text of the study you linked:

    In summary, it can be stated that more rigorous studies are needed to truly know the influence of the PDs in violent behavior and the true dangerousness of these subjects. Although the diagnosis of PD is a risk factor of recurrence in all the protocols in use of evaluation of risk, the following realities must be kept in mind: 1) most of those suffering from PD are not violent and never have been; 2) many abnormal personalities are more propitious victims then delinquents; 3) no PD is necessarily associated to violent behavior permanently, and 4) from a dynamic and motivational position, PD alone cannot explain violent behavior.

    Bolding mine. You were saying?

    Also: Personality Disorders are not mental illnesses. Still.

  390. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Another interesting quote from the conclusion:

    Studies on the possible relationship between mental
    disease in violent behavior are controversial. Many of the
    factors that are associated most with violent behavior and
    mental patients, such as psychopathy, anti-social behavior,
    drug abuse/dependence or anger, are predictors of significant
    violence among subjects without mental disorders, so that
    the independent effect of the mental disease and violence is
    not clear.

  391. PatrickG says

    So pharyngsd finally got around to linking something and didn’t bother to notice that it doesn’t really support his position?

    That’s unpossible!! What a clueless asshole.

  392. throwaway, never proofreads, every post a gamble says

    Causal link != significant risk.
    Causal link != significant correlation.
    That is: not 100% certainty for every individual exhibiting the traits of the PD which indicate violence. What do you think we do with people who indicate violence now that would change if we were to establish a significant risk of violence, or spree killings specifically, to a certain condition? How much correlation would it take to enact some type of policy of locking someone up when they indicate that they have the preconditions necessary to commit a spree killing?

    Notice, also, the myriad of other dimensions, besides PD themselves, which have an impact. As said, there is no way to determine what ER’s specific mental illness was, and even then it’s utterly useless because you cannot generalize behavior or risk factors on such flimsy, unscientific, spurious reasoning to an entirety of people with his specific mental illness (again, if there even was a mental illness).

    I just wish you could see how pointless it really is to determine the mental health of ER. A complete differential is not possible. Any benefit is lost because of the uncertainty of the diagnosis, an uncertainty which applies to even the most expert of experts on human behavior and psychology. Several people have already said that. Any extrapolations made would be tentative guesswork with the potential to burden the systems of vigilance rather than illuminate distinctions which would result in such behavior. That is, even if the next mass killer was even in psychiatric treatment, and there is no indication that they would be.

    You’re tilting at windmills.

  393. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Don’t you ever get tired of being wrong?

    We’re still waiting for you to be right. But then, we aren’t holding our breaths. You proved you were wrong days ago, and are to arrogant and ignorant to admit you are WRONG.

  394. pharyngsd says

    PatrickG

    So pharyngsd finally got around to linking something and didn’t bother to notice that it doesn’t really support his position?

    The study simply refutes the claim that there is no known link between mental disorders and violence.

    It’s a review of many studies. Hence, “Several studies have provided strong evidence that personality disorders (PD) represent a significant clinical risk for violence. ” The studies are out there.

    And that’s why it says right up front in the introduction that, “The clinical and legal-criminal importance of personality disorders (PD) in serious and violent behaviors is unquestionable.”

    That doesn’t mean that it ends there. In the summary, it cautions against drawing too many conclusions and that more study is needed. But it certainly doesn’t conclude that there is *no* link. In fact, they cite numerous studies that demonstrate that there is a positive link, although they might take exception to some of them. They also say that PD *alone* can’t explain violent behavior, and I tend to agree.

  395. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Pharyngsd, prove you are discussing, and not preaching. What would it take to prove you WRONG. The inability to answer this question is proof you are preaching, not discussing, and if you are wrong about that, everything else you have said is up for questioning too.

  396. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    The study simply refutes the claim that there is no known link between mental disorders and violence.

    I said causal link, douchebro, not no link at all. The conclusion of the paper was that people with PD who were violent almost always had some other co-morbidity, be it substance abuse or anger or other emotional stressers which are strong predictors of violent behavior even absent any kind of disorder. Thus nothing could be concluded about what impact mental disease has independent of these other factors.

    They also say that PD *alone* can’t explain violent behavior, and I tend to agree.

    Exactly. There has to be some other motivator for people with PDs to take violent action like, ohhhh I dunnoooooo virulent misogyny maybe?!

    You just can’t be bothered to think past the end of your damn nose, can you?

  397. PatrickG says

    Oh for fuck’s sake, pharyngsd, you linked that study in response to Seven’s statement that there is no causal link between PDs and violence, and shouted “AHA!”. Unfortunately for you, the study does not actually show that, as several commenters have just pointed out in excruciating detail.

    Do you actually know what “causal” means? Are you actually this stupid, or are you just drawn that way*?

    * Apologies to Jessica Rabbit.

  398. PatrickG says

    Also apologies to Seven of Mine, who was faster at replying, and really, whose prerogative it was to respond anyway. I should refresh before I spout off. :)

  399. says

    pharyngsd:

    The study simply refutes the claim that there is no known link between mental disorders and violence.

    Is this going to become a habit of yours? Misrepresenting what others say in an attempt at a ‘gotcha’ moment? You’ve done it with me, and now with Seven of Mine.

  400. PatrickG says

    Tony!:

    Remember me, Eddie Tony? When I killed your brother proved to the world I was an internet shitweasel, I talked… just… like… THIS! PHARYNGSD!

  401. Amphiox says

    The study simply refutes the claim that there is no known link between mental disorders and violence.

    Well now, wasn’t that an enlightening demonstration of pharyngsd’s intellectual dishonesty?

    One can also point out that the study was about PDs, not major depression depression.

    The two are not interchangeable, as anyone actually qualified to diagnose mental disorders would know.

  402. PatrickG says

    You’ve now made the list of people I’d love to meet one day.

    Likewise! I’ve always wondered what a shoop looks like in person, queer or otherwise. :)

    Or wait, is this another example of the Dreaded Hivemind? Somebody tell me what to think!

  403. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    There has to be some other motivator for people with PDs to take violent action like, ohhhh I dunnoooooo virulent misogyny maybe?!

    Or a psychotic delusion maybe?
    Or a lifelong history of abject loneliness maybe?
    Or a narcissistic view of perceived “slights,” maybe?

    Explain again how misogyny explains his misandry, as in: “The males deserve
    to be punished for living a better and more pleasurable life than me.”
    Explain again how misogyny leads to beliefs like, “I am a god. Exacting my Retribution is my way of
    proving my true worth to the world.”
    Explain again how misogyny leads to a desire to kill your little brother, “…denying him of
    the chance to grow up to surpass me…”

  404. Maureen Brian says

    Now try looking at it all another way, pharyngsd.

    Here is a privileged young man, the family are reasonably affluent, well connected, geographically perfectly placed to access the very best of medical and psychological support. And his parents are very aware that he is not coping well and ready to pay cash money for any help he needs. (There is no shortage of young men for whom the exact opposite of that will be true.)

    So off he goes to that help and all we, as lay persons at a distance, can glean is that perhaps – only perhaps – he might be on the autism spectrum. There is no confirmed diagnosis and as far as I can see the speculation about borderline personality disorder comes only after his death.

    So, he has been seen by specialists – face to face while still alive – and there is no diagnosis. I repeat, there is no diagnosis. All we have are hints of possible emotional problems, a possible developmental disorder. So what? With that alone we do not have a chain of causation. We do not have proof of anything.

    So what happens next? His behaviour becomes troubling, his racism and his misogyny more extreme and more public. His family and his social worker bring their concerns to the attention of the local police. And what do they do? Possibly because they are idle but also possibly because they are victims of the very same toxic masculinity in which ER has deliberately immersed himself they pop along to his place, establish that he has white skin and speaks politely and they do not even look at the videos threatening mass destruction, the videos which have been drawn to their attention.

    Now, we could have an interesting maybe even a productive 400-post discussion on how and why police officers are ill-equipped to pick up warning signs – remember, this is not the first time – but sitting here watching you masturbate over and over is mightily boring. Give it a rest, eh?

  405. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Or a psychotic delusion maybe?
    Or a lifelong history of abject loneliness maybe?
    Or a narcissistic view of perceived “slights,” maybe?

    1) Prove psychosis. He had a very grandiose fantasy but he also showed that he fully understood it was a fantasy. That’s why he chose to go on a killing spree instead of starting construction on his concentration camp. A spree he planned in great detail, understanding full well the consequences (he quietly killed his roommates so they couldn’t stop him (and because they were fucking the women he deserved); he changed the date because he thought there would be too many cops out and about on Halloween, etc.). Understanding full well that his fantasy was not only not real, but out of his reach to achieve. So he settled for killing women.

    1a) You are still using your ignorant, layperson’s colloquial understanding of clinical terms in a clinical context. I know thinking and remembering what the fuck you say and what is said to you from one post to the next are hard for you but do please try to keep up, popkin. “Psychotic” has a meaning in a clinical context and it isn’t “stuff that seems outlandish to me.”

    2) You mean loneliness because he was missing out on the sex he deserved because beast-like women were fucking lesser men?

    3) You mean his narcissistic view that he was more deserving of the women who wouldn’t fuck him than the men they chose to fuck instead?

    Explain again how misogyny explains his misandry, as in: “The males deserve
    to be punished for living a better and more pleasurable life than me.”

    1) See above. The “better life” he wanted and believed he deserved more than these men was having the exact women he wanted to fuck begging to be fucked by him.
    2) Misandry is not every instance of hating someone who happens to be male. It’s hating them because they’re male.

    Explain again how misogyny leads to beliefs like, “I am a god. Exacting my Retribution is my way of proving my true worth to the world.”
    Explain again how misogyny leads to a desire to kill your little brother, “…denying him of
    the chance to grow up to surpass me…”

    Nobody has claimed that misogyny has to explain every fucking sentence the guy ever spoke or wrote, fuckwit. We’ve all readily acknowledged that he was racist, entitled and at least a bit narcissistic. None of that negates the fact that he rails at great length about how women are a plague and need to be exterminated and are the root of all his suffering by virtue of being unwilling to fuck him and fucking less worthy men instead.

  406. says

    Explain again how misogyny explains his misandry, as in: “The males deserve
    to be punished for living a better and more pleasurable life than me.”
    Explain again how misogyny leads to beliefs like, “I am a god. Exacting my Retribution is my way of
    proving my true worth to the world.”
    Explain again how misogyny leads to a desire to kill your little brother, “…denying him of
    the chance to grow up to surpass me…”

    Since the fool is not paying attention to me, perhaps someone else can get it through hir thick head that the most reasonable explanation is not *just* misogyny (though that is a big component).
    There are multiple socio-cultural factors that influenced ER’s actions: misogyny, gun culture, a culture of violence, a culture of entitlement, and racism all combined in this asshole.
    God, how this fool can continue to assert that it’s mental illness in the face of all other evidence (and the lack of evidence to support hir pet theory) is beyond me. Not to mention, that xe continues to ignore the fact that even if mental illness were at play, it has no explanatory power. I mean FFS this fool is still continuing to assert the same shit that’s been refuted for well over 200 comments now!

  407. pharyngsd says

    Maureen

    All we have are hints of possible emotional problems, a possible developmental disorder.

    We have a lot more than just “hints.” His symptoms of loneliness, isolation and depression are *way* over the top. Remember, he had to leave school for *months* because he couldn’t take the social interaction.

    I repeat, there is no diagnosis.

    We don’t know that for sure, but let’s assume it for now. That doesn’t mean that there wasn’t anything wrong. There are plenty of examples in physical medicine where there is no diagnosis but the patient is experiencing pain and discomfort due to a physical malady. Did you see Jon Stewart lasts night? His guest was a women that was suffering from celiac disease that went undiagnosed for years. She was in real physical distress. It got so bad her skin was peeling off toward the end.

    Hell, I had pain in my hip that 3 doctors couldn’t diagnose definitively…and this was after numerous x-rays, MRI’s including one with a dye injection. But they certainly knew something was wrong.

    It happens all…the…time.

    Whatever was wrong with him, it was severe enough that a trained professional prescribed anti-psychotic medication. That’s a serious psychiatric intervention indicating *strongly* that the kid was seriously ill.

    We do not have proof of anything.

    We will never have 100% certainty because he’s dead. But we have plenty of evidence. A *ton* of it.

    …sitting here watching you masturbate over and over is mightily boring.

    Right back at you.

    But here’s another pro tip: if you don’t want me to respond, don’t address your posts at me.

  408. pharyngsd says

    “Psychotic” has a meaning in a clinical context and it isn’t “stuff that seems outlandish to me.”

    I’m well aware of that.

    Believing that you are divine and on a mission that requires a homicidal rampage for fulfillment is not just outlandish to *me*.

    Would you like to use this website as a reference for delusional symptoms?

    From http://www.healthline.com/health/psychosis#Symptoms2

    (italics mine)

    A delusion is a false belief or impression that is firmly held even though it is contradicted by reality and what is commonly held as true. There are delusions of paranoia, grandiose delusions, and somatic delusions.

    How about this one?

    http://www.webmd.com/schizophrenia/delusional-disorder

    People with delusional disorder often can continue to socialize and function normally, apart from the subject of their delusion, and generally do not behave in an obviously odd or bizarre manner.

    Find a source you trust regarding the nature and implications of psychotic delusions and show me how my conclusions about ER’s mental state are completely off the rails.

  409. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Whatever was wrong with him, it was severe enough that a trained professional prescribed anti-psychotic medication. That’s a serious psychiatric intervention indicating *strongly* that the kid was seriously ill.

    Stop that shit. You have been told, by me and by others, that doctors prescribe Risperdol, an anti-psychotic medication, to help people with certain developmental disabilities control certain behaviours. My son was on that medication for three years. It helped him learn to control himself — gave him, as he describes it, the mental space to figure out who he was. He was not “seriously ill.” He has a developmental disability.

    You have no fucking excuse any more. Shut the fuck up about fucking things you do not fucking understand and stop your claims that taking a certain drug, or seeing a therapist, means that my son is “seriously ill.” Go fuck yourself you lying piece of shit.

  410. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    We have a lot more than just “hints.” His symptoms of loneliness, isolation and depression are *way* over the top. Remember, he had to leave school for *months* because he couldn’t take the social interaction.

    Your unprofessional opinion is dismissed as noise. You don’t know enough to make a conclusion. Only a mental health professional can make that call.

    Whatever was wrong with him, it was severe enough that a trained professional prescribed anti-psychotic

    What part of the medicine is given to people with mild autism do you refuse to acknowledge? Like any True Believer™, anything that doesn’t support your theory does support your theory if your ignore the context. Preacher.

    But we have plenty of evidence. A *ton* of it.

    Nope, no real and conclusive evidence, only vague and circumstantial evidence, to vague to convict or make a diagnosis. Especially by a non-professional like you. Dismissed as your opinion of it isn’t real evidence.

    But here’s another pro tip: if you don’t want me to respond, don’t address your posts at me.

    Tip asshole, if you don’t want to be shown to be an arrogant and ignorant asshole, don’t be one, and shut the fuck up. You won’t find any converts to your True Belief™ here. We’re too smart for you, and we understand what real evidence is and what it means. You are wasting you time. Not ours. SIWOTI is always responded to.

  411. Louis says

    Pharyngsd is misrepresenting the data. Misreading what he cited is just one means by which Pharyngsd is doing this. Any interested reader can go back and look at the data I linked earlier in previous comments to find a more extensive (but still brief, beginning and entry level) demonstration of the correlations between violence and mental illnesses.

    Call Pharyngsd seventeen species of bastard for all I care, the incivility here is Pharyngsd’s. Honesty and arguing in good faith are more civil, more respectful, more productive and vastly more important than not using the odd Norty Werd™.

    Pharyngsd is not an honest interlocutor. Time is wasted by engaging with this specific driveller.

    Louis

  412. says

    Perhaps it’s time for a monitor to email PZ. Pharyngsd is deliberately misrepresenting people and refusing to engage with the facts–cf. repeatedly ignoring Ogvorbis’ points about Risperdol, ignoring my points about the variety of reasons people go to therapy. It’s clear xe is not here for a discussion.
    Hir trolling has long since grown tiresome.

  413. pharyngsd says

    Seven

    Nobody has claimed that misogyny has to explain every fucking sentence the guy ever spoke or wrote, fuckwit.

    I’m not talking about every *single* sentence. He spends plenty of time blaming men for being more happy than he is. It’s a hallmark of his thinking. His sick reaction to his own poor self esteem got so bad he even wanted to kill his brother.

    Look. Misogyny, as people are wont to say around here, explains nothing. It’s a description of his attitude toward women.

    It doesn’t explain how his feelings toward women could cause him to behave like a homicidal maniac.

    You are arguing (I think) that misogyny is the fundamental driver for his homicidal rampage and therefore he is worthy of scorn.

    I’m arguing that, while his misogyny is contemptible, the fundamental driver for his homicidal rampage was some kind of a mental illness as indicated by his psychotic delusion, psychopathic disregard for human lives, *years* of maladaptive development and his own personal testimony regarding his hatred for everyone he feels has wronged him.

    That’s really all there is to it.

  414. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    But they certainly knew something was wrong.

    Why are you still bleating “something was wrong” at us? His parents were concerned, he visited multiple therapists, obviously Rodger and his family though “something was wrong.” I’m perfectly happy to trust their judgement since they, you know, ACTUALLY KNEW HIM.

    The point, which you’re hell bent on ignoring, is “something was wrong” is a completely useless observation. It has all the explanatory power of Goddidit.

    Find a source you trust regarding the nature and implications of psychotic delusions and show me how my conclusions about ER’s mental state are completely off the rails.

    No. Can you guess why? You should be able to since we’ve been saying it for 400 posts now. I’m not going to Google symptoms and attempt to diagnose a dead person I never met. Because I’m not a psychologist or psychic.

  415. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    pharyngsd

    Stop ignoring the bulk of people’s responses to you in favor of simply stating and restating and restating again all the same fucking bullshit that we’ve already addressed.

    You’re elliding the vast majority of what people post and quote mining and acting like your nonsense wasn’t addressed each of the last 100 times you brought it up.

  416. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    . Misogyny, as people are wont to say around here, explains nothing. It’s a description of his attitude toward women.

    Symptom yes, and it focused his rage. What part of that don’t YOU grasp?

    It doesn’t explain how his feelings toward women could cause him to behave like a homicidal maniac.

    Presuppositional fuckwittery. You called him a maniac. Mentally ill. That hasn’t been shown to be the case. Cut out the presuppositional fuckwittery.

    Your armchair diagnosis is dismissed as fuckwittery. Only a mental health profession who interacted with ER can make that call.

    Why are you making that call with arrogance and ignorance? You can’t, and you shouldn’t even try to make that call.

  417. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Ack, borked the last blockquote in #450. First paragraph, Pharyngsd, second is me.

  418. Maureen Brian says

    This is not addressed to the arrogant shit above.

    For general information – I do not often see Jon Stewart, much as I like him, because I live in a different country (Oh my god! You mean there are other countries? How can that be?) where his show is not available live and the edited snippets available later tend to disappoint.

    Despite the sterling efforts of many – you now who you are – with actual knowledge and insight and others with just a lot more sense we have seen an exemplary display of the need of the ignorant to dominate all conversations, lest their lack of knowledge disqualify them from taking over the universe. Or something.

    This note is the exception. I shall in future revert to my previous practice of addressing, should I wish to, anyone who appears on this blog. Because, I mean, who the fuck is going to stop me?

  419. Tethys says

    I see stupid troll is still here promoting his very own special theory of ER that ignores the extreme misogyny because “lonely and sad and no friends”.

    Hey pharygsd, perhaps you should see a therapist about your problems with either reading comprehension or your need to pretend that killing blonde sorority women who didn’t pay attention to/fuck him was not ER’s stated motive.

    Your projection and delusional thinking are becoming disturbing.
    —-

    Tony!

    There are multiple socio-cultural factors that influenced ER’s actions: misogyny, gun culture, a culture of violence, a culture of entitlement, and racism all combined in this asshole.

    Aren’t all of these but the racism part of patriarchal authoritarian culture? Might makes right is the dynamic that is being played out in all of them.

  420. says

    Tethys:

    Aren’t all of these but the racism part of patriarchal authoritarian culture? Might makes right is the dynamic that is being played out in all of them.

    Come to think of it, you’re probably right.
    Though I hoped breaking it down like that would enable our resident nitwit to see how established social factors influenced ERs actions. I was clearly wrong.

  421. says

    Pharyngsyd:

    I wouldn’t simply dismiss him as an extreme misogynist worthy of scorn.

    You are arguing (I think) that misogyny is the fundamental driver for his homicidal rampage and therefore he is worthy of scorn.

    Does it bother you that misogynists are deemed worthy of scorn? Or that killers are?

    Also, nobody has said that misogyny is THE fundamental driver. It is A driver. It is clearly one driver among several. Mental illness may be a driver. It is not clear if it is or not. Do you see the difference yet? Mental illness = not CLEARLY a driver. Misogyny = CLEARLY a driver. Racism = CLEARLY a driver. There are other drivers we could talk about. If mental illness is a driver, it’s not clear how. Those other factors are more clear. And, there are things we, as a society, can do to change them.

    *shrug*

    In some cases where someone hurts someone else, it seems clear that better and earlier mental health interventions could have helped prevent the incident. This isn’t a case like that, so I really don’t get what the point of harping on mental illness is. Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. But it’s not like he didn’t have access to mental health care, so there’s not much for society to do there. I’m interested in talking about the things that a.) are clearly connected to the crime and b.) we can do something about. For A in this case, you’ve got a big fat maybe, and for B it’s a definite no. So what’s the point?

  422. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    This just in: Correlation does equal causation! More at 11.

  423. Maureen Brian says

    And if you can manage to read as far as paragraph 2 of the report – a news report, not a scientific paper – which Gerard O links at 456 you will see that they did not even bother to assemble their own control group.

    Rather than matching people for age, gender, socio-economic status, rather even that picking the first people they met in the street until they had the right number and asking them exactly the same questions they pull out of somewhere a notional figure. Where’s that figure come from? Well it seems to be some sort of compound, figures from a number of papers which may well have been subject to rounding or other manipulation before they were published.

    Look, Gerard O, I only did the use of statistics in censuses and sociological research at university. And a long time ago, too. And I can see that you could sail the whole of the D-Day landing fleet through that account.

    Also – in breaking news! – not everyone whose expertise is in autism agrees with Simon Baron Cohen, as you would know if you were not flinging magic links to distract us. Try again.

  424. Gerard O says

    The link I posted wasn’t meant to bolster my argument, but did serve as a counterweight to those dismissive of the depression claim regarding Elliot Rodger, though it does make it even harder to argue against my diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome. When discussing the statistical relevance of this study remember that it has significant population reach, given that 0.2% of the general population have AS.

  425. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Gerard O

    Even if your link showed what it claimed to, it wouldn’t bolster claims that any specific autistic person was clinically depressed, particularly ones who we don’t even actually know were autistic. And who we’ve never met. And who are dead.

  426. Seven of Mine, formerly piegasm says

    Also, since this is apparently lost on you and your fuckwit friend, the discussion here is not “definitely was clinically depressed” vs. “definitely wasn’t clinically depressed.” It’s “definitely was clinically depressed” vs. “stop waving this red herring around; it smells”

  427. Maureen Brian says

    Yes, Gerard O, but it doesn’t do that. It doesn’t prove anything except that Simon Baron Cohen and a colleague asked people with Asperger’s a couple of questions and totted up the answers.

    Against a matched control group it might have been interesting. Or a group with a firm diagnosis of Asperger’s against a matched group at the very early stages of investigation to see whether they might have it, or groups with a firm diagnosis receiving different types of medication and support (including none) against each other. If you’re trying to prove something you have to design the experiment to test that. Then the experiment has to be repeatable. This is not repeatable because there too many variables not controlled for.

    There is dispute within the profession, anyway, about whether Asperger’s is a valid diagnosis or whether it just means “upper middle class kids towards the benign end of the autism spectrum who have good social support.” I am not qualified to pronounce on that.

    You give yourself away! You used the phrase “my diagnosis of Asperger’s” so now I have to ask you – are you professionally qualified? did you ever meet Elliot Rodger? either way, what does your professional body say about either breaching patient confidentiality or essaying long distance diagnosis of someone who is not your patient.

    Oh, and have you ruled out all of the other conditions which can produce the very oddities which might set a qualified paediatric psychiatrist off down the Asperger’s trail? There are all sorts of conditions you’d have to eliminate before that diagnosis is made. Alex Gabriel gives an excellent account here – http://freethoughtblogs.com/godlessness/2014/06/07/3-the-gag-reflex/ – of a type of epilepsy which would easily raise the Asperger’s question. It’s very common, more common than lay people realise, and most of the people who have it have, at some stage, been either written of as deliberately difficult or misdiagnosed.

    Please, Gerard O, if you’re going to respond to this do it by addressing the questions and not with yet another assertion that you just must be right.

  428. originalantigenicsin says

    The study (which the linked article is based on) is indeed extremly limited. It only shows, that in a group of adults with newly diagnosed Asperger’s syndrome a higher percentage answered the questions “have you ever felt suicidal?”, and “if yes, have you ever planned or attempted suicide?” with “yes” than people in control groups (which the researches couldn’t properly match for age, sex, or other risk factors) that have been asked similar questions. Everything else is simply speculation. But hey, murder=depression=Asperger’s=Hitler!
    Link: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanpsy/article/PIIS2215-0366%2814%2970248-2/fulltext

  429. Ogvorbis: Still failing at being human. says

    Holy shit on a sardine. Gerard O is still claiming he can diagnose Aspergers Syndrome without even meeting the person? Highly trained professionals can disagree on the diagnosis after spending extended periods of time interacting with the person, yet Gerard can magically do this for dead people he never met. So, Gerard, do you moonlight for GOP congress persons who need to diagnose a brain-dead woman?

  430. says

    Gerard O:

    The link I posted wasn’t meant to bolster my argument, but did serve as a counterweight to those dismissive of the depression claim regarding Elliot Rodger, though it does make it even harder to argue against my diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome.

    Your “diagnosis”?!
    Bwahahahahahahahahahahahaha!
    Oh hee hee. The fuckwit still thinks he’s a psychiatrist. It is to laugh.
    Oh, and his link wasn’t meant to bolster his argument…it was just meant to strengthen his position. Those are of course, not the same thing. Suuuuuuuuuure.

  431. says

    I’m still laughing that Gerard O thinks that he can diagnose someone with Asperger’s (despite his lack of qualifications, despite him not having interacted with the individual, and that individual being dead) bc he was diagnosed with AS.

    @74

    I made a comment elsewhere on FtB that Rodger’s actions should be classified as a misogynist hate crime, and that still stands. However, there seems to be considerable evidence that Rodger had some version of Asperger’s Syndrome, which technically is not a mental illness but a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). I was diagnosed with AS in 2011 (aged 33), and having read sizable chunks of Rodger’s “manifesto” I can tell you that it is near certain that he had the same condition, with perhaps a narcissistic personality disorder thrown in.

    Oh, and there’s this gem from him @94:

    A big thx to ‘Giliell…’ @90 — unfounded accusations of racism are the best way to start an internet interaction I say. I _can_ make diagnoses of people based on the strength of the evidence: Hitler, for instance, almost certainly had Asperger’s.

    He’s better than any professional out there. He can diagnose a man that’s been dead for almost 70 years.

  432. Tethys says

    Og

    Holy shit on a sardine. Gerard O is still claiming he can diagnose Aspergers Syndrome without even meeting the person?

    Yep, because according to Gerard, having a condition magically transforms you into being a trained expert. Following this logic, everyone who has ever had a cavity filled is a fully qualified dentist, and having cancer would turn you into an Oncologist.

    Hitler was an Aspie? A person who was highly charismatic, got elected to high office multiple times, invented propaganda, and then tried to establish the great white Aryan nation through genocide was an Aspie? Great balls o’ fire, that is some industrial grade stupid.

  433. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Yawn, some people can’t comprehend they have nothing to add to the discussion, but keep trying to do so….