If a stupid human does something stupid, they are likely to feel bad about it and so be deterred from doing it again in the future. But if a stupid psychopath does something stupid, they are incapable of feeling anything about it, so they are far less likely to be deterred from doing it again in the future.
Which is why it is estimated that eighty percent of crimes are committed by stupid psychopaths, and the recidivism rate for psychopaths is over ninety percent. These are the people who leave prison after five years and immediately commit half a dozen robberies so that they can spend three thousand in a strip club and brothel with Barcelona escorts, which is where the Police go to catch them.
As an aside, if society took the decision to imprison for life all criminals who are proven to be psychopaths, the vast majority of crime would be eliminated instantly. However, we are then into the realm of pre-crime from Minority Report or The Machine from Person Of Interest. Which most humans would find unacceptable. But most intelligent psychopaths would find to be simple pragmatic common sense. An intelligent psychopath would take that decision in a heartbeat.
Intelligent psychopaths are a different breed. If they commit a fraud, they aim to be Bernie Madoff. If they kill people, they try to be Stalin. Brains linked to the attributes of a psychopath can produce terrifying or astonishing results, depending on the purpose and the concomitant actions.
So, what are the attributes of psychopaths? There are commonly agreed to be a few traits which are used to identify people for investigation. Those traits are:
- Lack of empathy, guilt, conscience or remorse
- Shallow experiences of feelings or emotions
- Impulsivity and a weak ability to defer gratification and control behavior
- Superficial charm and glibness
- Irresponsibility and a failure to accept responsibility for their actions
- A grandiose sense of their own worth
Now let us apply those to “evil doing”, which is what humans automatically think of when they hear “psychopath”.