Sunday, November 15, 2015

How people get labeled autistic or psychopathic

The official autism rate is being raised again:
Autism affects one in 45 children in the United States, almost twice the rate from a few years ago, said a survey Friday that uses a new approach to assess the frequency of the developmental disorder.

The latest figures may reflect a more accurate picture of autism spectrum disorder, said the report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics, and so does not necessarily mean that there is a ballooning autism epidemic.
They are pathologizing normal behavior.
Autism spectrum disorder is a developmental disability that may cause a person to have difficulty behaving, learning, communicating and interacting with people. It is believed to be influenced by genetic and environmental factors, though scientists do not fully understand all its causes.

There is no known cure, but early intervention in toddlers as young as two can sometimes help.
If you want lots of funding, what would you do? Take healthy behavior that is slightly outside the norm, declare it an incurable disease, and claim that some bogus therapies somehow help anyway.

So what gets someone labeled autistic? Sometimes it is a sign of a lack of empathy, such as this:
People with psychopathic characteristics are less likely to be affected by "contagious yawning" than those who are empathetic, according to a Baylor University psychology study.
That's right, to these conformist creeps, there is something wrong with you if you do not yawn when everyone else does.

Another tip-off is the use of logical language:
The researchers compared stories told by 14 imprisoned psychopathic male murderers with those of 38 convicted murderers who were not diagnosed as psychopathic. Each subject was asked to describe his crime in detail; the stories were taped, transcribed and subjected to computer analysis.

A psychopath, as described by psychologists, is emotionally flat, lacks empathy for the feelings of others, and is free of remorse. Psychopaths behave as if the world is to be used for their benefit, and they employ deception and feigned emotion to manipulate others.

The words of the experimental subjects matched these descriptions. Psychopaths used more conjunctions like "because," "since" or "so that," implying that the crime "had to be done" to obtain a particular goal. They used twice as many words relating to physical needs, such as food, sex or money, while non-psychopaths used more words about social needs, including family, religion and spirituality.
My guess is that the murderers got diagnosed as psychopathic because, in part, they used logical instead of emotional explanations. The psychologists who do these studies prefer the emotional explanations, and try to pathologize anything logical.

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