Are We in a Narcissism Epidemic? (Newsweek)

Page 4 of 4 [ 52 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4

Dussel
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Age: 55
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,788
Location: London (UK)

21 Apr 2009, 5:02 am

oli234 wrote:
Quote:
PR and advertisement wouldn't be successful if they couldn't tap on a human strain already present. They do it today more professional than let say the tailors and goldsmiths of gone periods of history, but the underlying mechanism is still the same. The material wealth of today's society does just enable wider groups to play this game.

You shall start to read text from earlier periods of history - those people were not that different to today's society.




I agree that this has tapped into something that is already there in the human mind, sellfish desires. But in centuries past society has been a mitigating factor on these desires, and now society openly encourages there frank expression, and that is a cultural shift. People just didn't used to talk about things like "self-actualization" or "going away to find myself" this word self just wasn't as important before the popularization of psychological ideas, especially freud's.

And you don't need to look back centuries to see this trend, if you look at the difference between the culture of the 50's and the 70's this trend is apparant.


The 1950s were an exception, like the romantic/Biedermeier period in Europe between 1813/15 and 1830/48. When the most people just wanted a quite live - there was - by the two big wars and the turmoil between the wars - to much change in short time for most (like between 1789 and 1813/15). I hardly would regard both periods as typical; those were periods when people had enough of change, they wanted a normal live.

If you go further back and you leave those groups/classes of society which were busy enough to survive (the vast majority) and look at those how could afford luxury (a tiny minority) than you will find the same patterns. We have from the Court of Louis XIV reports of high intimacy. Louis XIV sister in law, Lieselote of Palatine, wrote 1000s of letters reporting in detail the live at the court and you find open homosexuality, orgies, fashion fights and almost everything what consist of modern society.

The people certainly did not know of Freud, but were very aware about their hidden desires and lived those out.

---

What is new, if anything, id that those desires are today subject of scientific investigation and commercially used to promote products.



Pogue
Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

User avatar

Joined: 15 Apr 2009
Age: 44
Gender: Male
Posts: 47

21 Apr 2009, 10:19 am

I'm sure many of the factors listed above are involved by there is also a sense of rising expectations of life. Whether that's driven by marketing, tv or the mass production of an educated class. I think the rise of the educated class is a major factor. They have broader horizons and expectations.

In the 1930s there was no job too low for an american. People of all backgrounds did anything and everything. Some of the most famous gangsters and boxers were jews, who a generation later would largely be represented by the white collar and professional work force (as a population). That's a specific raising of cultural expectations but it probably applies to civilizations as well.

There is probably a variable here where some civilizatoins grow to have higher expectations of life and do see themselves as more important or special than previous generations or cultures. That would translate to how they raise their children to see themselves as well.



stephanielynnkeil
Emu Egg
Emu Egg

User avatar

Joined: 20 Apr 2009
Age: 31
Gender: Female
Posts: 4

21 Apr 2009, 4:00 pm

I (and many others) feel that Asperger's and other mild autistic disorders (PDD-NOS) are grossly overdiagnosed.

Since Asperger's is associated with "genius" many people are now attaching the label to themselves as well as narcissistic parents of young children who have nothing wrong with them but think something must be wrong with their child because they aren't a "genius" or something of the sort.

This seems to be common among parents: "I have one kid on the spectrum and another two in the process of evaluation!". They speak as if autism is some degree to brag about.

Every intelligent, introverted person with a hobby is now being diagnosed with an ADSD.

I have severe autism and have met others, both online and in real life, who claim to have an ASD and I suspect about 75% or more don't but have decided to attach the label to themselves for whatever reason, and then they become a "proud Aspie" or whatever the new lingo is now.

I for one don't understand this, but whatever...


_________________
"Beauty is nothing but the beginning of terror." - Rilke

http://www.stephanielynnkeil.blogspot.com


ooOoOoOAnaOoOoOoo
Veteran
Veteran

Joined: 18 Jun 2008
Gender: Female
Posts: 13,399

21 Apr 2009, 10:22 pm

While on the subject of sociopaths: Phillip Markoff the alleged "Craigslist Killer" could not fit the description of one any better. This guy is a perfect example of a bona fide sociopath and how one can succeed because they are so good at fooling others. It never ceases to amaze me. If you have the looks, the smarts, the family connections, and the social skills you can fool anyone. He's a pre med (or med, one) student at Boston college set to marry in August.
The only reason this guy didn't get away with it is because he used the internet and the FBI easily tracked his IP address.
However, his fiance, who probably knew him better than anyone, cept his own mom and maybe even better than her, says, "he wouldn't harm a fly".
Like I said, it amazes me! I can't believe how good some people are at fooling others. I honestly don't know how they manage it. Apparently, this guy managed it pretty well.



Dussel
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 19 Jan 2009
Age: 55
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,788
Location: London (UK)

21 Apr 2009, 10:40 pm

stephanielynnkeil wrote:
I (and many others) feel that Asperger's and other mild autistic disorders (PDD-NOS) are grossly overdiagnosed.

Since Asperger's is associated with "genius" many people are now attaching the label to themselves as well as narcissistic parents of young children who have nothing wrong with them but think something must be wrong with their child because they aren't a "genius" or something of the sort.

This seems to be common among parents: "I have one kid on the spectrum and another two in the process of evaluation!". They speak as if autism is some degree to brag about.


Also nothing new - today it seems, according to your remark, aspergers, in the 19th century there was a period when having tuberculosis (or to look like) was "highly fashionable". For my part, I do not take this to seriously, such fashions raise and go.



Inventor
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 15 Feb 2007
Gender: Male
Posts: 6,295
Location: New Orleans

22 Apr 2009, 5:46 am

I see the decline of subtance and place, a lack of merit covered by a show of success.

In my neighborhood we have The Plumber Queen. Her husband is a minor plumber, but do to connections in the trade, they bought a teardown, and built a big box. The first thing she did was call the building inspectors when I was repairing my roof. I had to get a building permit, for she was running the neighborhood now.

Let us say she was not friendly. She acted superior, and got laughed at by the older residents.

Next to my house the same happened, a bigger and nicer house, and they guy came over to ask if he could bring a contracter into my yard, which is open, to point out something which could not be seen from his yard. His house is worth three times mine, but he is a very soft spoken and polite fellow.

He was granted endless permission to come into my yard at any time, and when his dogs get out, I go tell him. He will have nothing to do with The Plumber Queen. Economically he is much better off than the plumber, but talks old cars and motorcycles with me, and visits with the mexican family across the street.

He has education and subtance, but likes a quiet life. He is a good neighbor.

Another family did the same a few doors down, and built a huge house with a pool, and The Plumber Queen had to tear out her back yard and put in a pool. They also ignore her. They had new cars, she has been buying new cars. My neighbor is driving the same one he came with.

There have been a lot of people like her that move into my neighborhood for the status, then look for who they can look down on. She hates us, so I leave cardboard boxes on my porch.

I have heard that she belongs to many organizations, most likely our Homeland Security spy, and tells everyone she leads our neighborhood. No one here will speak to her.

This is our homes, but in a purely social world, she would manipulate. There are a bunch of them and they form gangs.

The rich folks down the street once asked if they could trim the bushes by the sidewalk, their little girl just got her first bike, and of course, but I did hire your lawn guy, and he should have kept it clear. The bushes have been neatly trimmed since.

Those of merit and ability are the nicest people.

The old royality did have their good and bad, but mostly good, European cities, Universities, the arts, did not just happen. They kept nation sized economies running, everyone eating, and an orderly life.

Some of the new people were flashy, worked at building a name, but most of theose were known for learning, talent, drive, and the big jobs came from King and Church. They rose because they made themselves useful.

What we have now is money without talent. What someone else earned, they try to buy.

They think the new car, big house, latest clothes, will make them people.

They send their children to the best schools, so they will meet the right people.

The sons of plumbers could become very good plumbers, but send them to school with the sons of lawyers, doctors, and there is still a class differance that money cannot change.

They get over educated to be plumbers, but it does not open the door to a better life, it just becomes more expensive.

I go with Epicurus, a modest meal, a slighly better bottle of wine, but good friends who share your place in life and interests.

Those seeking status are always trying to fit where they are not part of the world. They can go to the schools, buy their way into clubs, but they do not get invited for the bottle of wine and watching the sun set. The world moves on around them, and they are left with debt.

They are trying to get in where personalities and generations have created a culture, just knowing the son from school will not get a high paying job from his father, that job will go to someone who is crosslinked into the whole of the group pattern of success. Bankers do not need a plumber on staff.

As a plumber he could have improved life for a whole crew, made a good living, gained wealth.

Hundreds of thousands have gone for the MBA, but never understood the mutual survival of business.

You get what we have, empty suits that loot their company, for money was their only goal. Stockholder value, the workforce, mean nothing to them, they send the work to Mexico or China, get a large bonus, and leave towns to die.

The old saying was, "Shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations." Grandfather worked for it, son lived on it, grandson blew it. There is a lot of that.

Other families can lose it all, and a few years later have it back, for they have the trust of many. They see their function in the community. It might make them rich, but it is about doing what is needed.

To think of only yourself, is a small world, to think of what will help all to a better life, all will support it.

Find a place where the value of your service is much greater than your needs for support.

The people who rose to fortune were like Ford, he paid top wages, and more, healthcare, retirement, on the job training and promotion, and he turned out a good product at a fair price. He worked hard for his people, and then started the Ford Foundation to make a better world. A lot of people lived, bought houses, a car, Ford of course, raised and educated children, all because Ford worked hard.

It is not dead, Bill Gates had a non life, but we have the Internet. Warren Buffet did nothing but look at the stock market, and helped a lot of people hold on to their money.

Not everyone gets rich at it, but Mother Terasa is well thought of. The Ladies of the Garden Club have kept many a small town alive. Thinking beyond self is what works.

Those trying to become someone other than themselves lose what they had, most important, a few friends and equals, simple fare, and time for reflection. The education and job do not get it, and when as hundreds of thousands in New York are discovering, the job is gone, no one knows you. You are a stranger to all, and to yourself.

When the job is the identity, yes, they do have to think they deserve it, to go out and get a life, for they lack one. They passed but did not learn.

Now the big house and many forms of debt are demanding, and they are really alone. They just rented the image. Millions are discovering they have no subtance, or idea of how to get any.

The same happens with those who get by on being young and cute, one morning they are neither any longer.

A long and happy life is based on educating yourself, learning yourself, and seeing how that can be of use to all. A good plumber can have an interest in Egyptian history, and support the Library.

Being useful at what you are is easy, and secure. It grows, changes with the times, and most important, keeps you active.

Advancing in years you find most stopped, from all the same in school, sort of, many just vanish into the world of work and TV. Many try harder, lots die at 43, the rest seem waiting to die, and after 65, most do in a year and a half. They isolated themselves from life.

At 62 I am starting a few new projects, keeping up with some old ones, and know people from eight to ninety. I keep up on current events and technology. I am upgrading my publishing which is magic machines to me. Next come a web site, something techno art. Life is constant learning.

Living your own life is the only workable goal.

The Greeks said, " In old age there are but two regrets, those things you did, and those you did not, and between the two, what you did not, are by far the worse."

Don't save sex for your old age, as Janis said, "Get it while you can!"



millie
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 25 Oct 2008
Age: 57
Gender: Female
Posts: 3,448

22 Apr 2009, 12:55 pm

^ great post Inventor.