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June 30, 2005

Comments

James Hamilton

I really must blog about this absurd case - it all adds up to the gentleman concerned getting away with murder purely because his own individual strain of nastiness confirmed to one of the most absurd "disorders" ever concocted. What isn't explained, at all, is why, if the disorder exists and he has it, it has anything to do with diminished responsibility. In what sense did it make him more liable, and less responsible, to and for murder?
This disorder is the invention of one Heinz Kohut, and he has it in common with the inventors of other "disorders" that narcissisitc personality disorder made his name. I'm not surprised to see Oliver James attaching his flag to the mast, and I think it shows the measure of the man in a way.

Tom

Absolutely right. He's not criminally responsible for murdering his parents, apparently, because he's the kind of murdering bastard who kills his parents.

One reason why so many prisoners have personality disorders, incidentally, is that criminal behaviour is one of the ways you'll get diagnosed with one. It's a circular process. 100% of prisoners are criminals, but that isn't in itself an indictment of the prison system.

Backword Dave

While I'm also sceptical about the diagnosis, I still think Oliver James is an opportunistic fraud. He concludes, "If his parents dared to challenge his illusions about his own wonderfulness, they could have been the most at risk of being the object of his venom." This doesn't seem to be the case.

He flew into a rage and killed his parents, retired buyers for a high street retailer, when they confronted him about his profligate spending. Afterwards he took out 11 credit cards in his parents' names and ran up bills of more than £30,000.

Telegraph. (http://news.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2005/06/30/nblack30.xml ) He killed them over money, or his sense of entitlement. Someone in school must have "challenge[d] his illusions about his own wonderfulness" at some point. He didn't assault any teachers.

James, whom I often agree with, is quite wrong to suggest that Brian Blackwell "[got] away with murder." He didn't.

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