14 March 2010

About That Seemingly Irrational Need for Bonuses...

Psychopath: A person with an antisocial personality disorder, manifested in aggressive, perverted, criminal, or amoral behavior without empathy or remorse.
He would sell his mother for an eighth.

He would betray his most solemn promise on a whim.

He was a law unto himself, forcing others to serve his needs.

He would grab society's tit and suck it dry.

He would grasp and tear until he showed them all.

He was beyond good and evil--- He was an American hero.
"Our hypothesis was that psychopathic traits are also linked to dysfunction in dopamine reward circuitry," Buckholtz said. "Consistent with what we thought, we found people with high levels of psychopathic traits had almost four times the amount of dopamine released in response to amphetamine."

In the second portion of the experiment, the research subjects were told they would receive a monetary reward for completing a simple task. Their brains were scanned with fMRI while they were performing the task. The researchers found in those individuals with elevated psychopathic traits the dopamine reward area of the brain, the nucleus accumbens, was much more active while they were anticipating the monetary reward than in the other volunteers.

"It may be that because of these exaggerated dopamine responses, once they focus on the chance to get a reward, psychopaths are unable to alter their attention until they get what they're after," Buckholtz said. Added Zald, "It's not just that they don't appreciate the potential threat, but that the anticipation or motivation for reward overwhelms those concerns."

Psychopaths' Brains Wired to Seek Rewards No Matter the Consequences

So let's give deregulation and the efficient markets hypothesis another chance to really maximize the damage.

An entire society built around white punks on dopamine, trapped in the infantile stage of development, allocating resources for the many, the arbiters of utility and worth, from Wall Street to the Congress: this is what America has become.