Noun; mental disorder of high-minded Leftist “Do-Gooders”
Definition of "Pathological Altruism"
Examples of "Pathological Altruism" include:
What Is Pathological Altruism?
Pathological altruism is that feel-good, smooth ride highway to hell, paved with good intentions. That is, typically paved by Democrat radicals who lecture the world about so many ills that they either created by their meddling or made worse by their intervention.
We can all appreciate the spirit of generosity that permeates American culture. However, a few things allow pathological altruism to flourish:
- Do-gooders are allowed to make policy based on emotional appeals alone, “because it’s the right thing to do” or “because that’s who we are as Americans” or “we’re on the right side of history”
- Do-gooders are not involved in the implementation, administration and evaluation of the policies they promote. They’re certainly not the recipients of their generosity
- Our government and institutions rarely stop and publicly assess the effectiveness and consequences of our these policies
Once sufficient evidence proves that the cure was worse than the disease, we need to stop it, and redirect. Obviously, right?
Wrong. The majority of modern leftists never stop, not because they believe that one final push will reveal the promised land, but because they already feel the warmth and satisfaction of knowing they did something that mattered, and we must never dare take that away.
The feeling itself becomes the drug that dictates a continued action.
NOTE: It’s important to understand why leftists argue the way they do. We can’t always rely on Hanlon’s razor, or assume it’s part of the global socialist agenda. Sometimes we’re just dealing with the mentally ill.
Pathological Altruism vs. Virtue Signaling
Though often synonymous, virtue signaling is the public display of "woke" values to show your moral superiority. It's basically leftist social proof that you are a caring individual. While often the external manifestation of pathological altruism bias, virtue signalers are sometimes only in it to get laid or fit in with the woke crowd, and may acknowledge when they're wrong. They may or may not get a real emotional fix from their peacocking.
National Debt Crisis. Does anyone know where all that money went? And if there was any doubt about the pathological nature of our national spending, consider our unfunded liabilities of over $200 TRILLION!
Oh, happy givers! We passed another omnibus or stimulus and more is on teh way! Because that’s the American way. Giving away our great grandchildren’s inheritance to pay for today’s goodies. We refuse to even balance a budget — not one balanced budget in the last 20 years! — because we can’t think of limiting Congress’ largesse.
Soviet 5-Year Plan. A full-on pathological altruism pandemic! Quite possibly the most egregious example in history, the Soviet Union’s 5-year plan for remaking the country into utopia resulted in the massacre of hundreds of thousands and the starvation and extermination of millions, primarily in the Ukraine. (1933 Ukrainian Holodomor)
Leftists the world over continued to support socialist policies, even suppressing actual news of them! “You can’t make an omelet without cracking a few eggs,” Walter Duranty famously retorted, continuing to lie and cover for the atrocities in the NY Times even as the news leaked out by other journalists.
Socialism has proven among the worst ideas mankind ever created, responsible for the death of over 140 MILLION people in the 20th century, but do-gooders still trot it out with a “It’s never really been tried” excuse. Pathological indeed.
COVID Response. One day, when the full truth is obvious, the petty tyrants will still say it was all for the public good. That they should be hailed as heroes.
NY Governor Cuomo murdered thousands of old people and he already wrote a book about what an awesome job he did. And he won an Emmy for it! And the 2020 Edward M. Kennedy Institute Award for Inspired Leadership. And his staff cooked the books to hide the death toll.
And who is responsible for stealing away a year of our children’s lives with these lockdowns? Why if the masks work did we need a vaccine? Why if the vaccine works do we still need masks? Why if we’re trying to achieve herd immunity do we need either one? Whatever happened to the flu?
You can’t ask those questions because too many Karens with pathological altruism are publicly shaming Walmart shoppers without masks. While at school, our track runners pass out for running with masks.
Refugee Crisis. Why is it beneficial for countries to take in third world refugees?
No, seriously. Why should the United States transport thousands of Syrian (or other) nationals anywhere? Would it not be better if we erect refugee camps in the “host” country where we can provide protection and assistance? Then they retain their nationality, connection to family, education, language, culture, and be more easily repatriated once the conflict ends, right?
You can’t ask those questions. That’s xenophobic! It’s Islamophobic. We’re helping people!
It’s much better, says the UN and leftists, that refugees litter every country across Europe and USA, gaining citizenship and welfare dollars where they hold no respect for local laws, customs, and norms. How could that go wrong?
If you don’t care, or if you think it’s a net-positive despite what the victims in host countries say, then you have pathological altruism. And you don’t live the communities that host these refugees.
Because as it turns out, things can go VERY wrong. Rapes have skyrocketed across the Scandinavian countries. What percentage of perpetrators are foreign nationals? 95-100%.
Christian churches across France have burned, including Notre Dame in Paris, where the city must halt business several times a day to deal with the prayer times of its large Muslim population. That is, when they’re not dealing with decapitated cartoonists or shoppers run over by vans rented by these refugees. France is starting to fight back.
In England, “Asian” (Muslim) grooming gangs regularly rape English girls and their communities are not even allowed to protest openly. Just ask Tommy Robinson.
But we don’t get sympathy from those altruistic elites who got their emotional fix. They’re content with their open-minded compassion, confident their country will foot the bill, and keep them free from the refugees who would kill them if given half a chance.
Too Many Examples of Pathological Altruism to Tell
Take literally any policy today — are we allowed to debate it in any reasonable way and reach a conclusion contrary to leftist ideology without being called racist, xenophobic, transphobic, sexist, or otherwise bigoted?
Fighting Pathological Altruism
Our policy-makers — and sovereign citizens they represent — must consider multiple perspectives, not only when proposing policies, but in evaluating them. And yes, we must revisit policies: short term and long-term.
We might start with the question: who actually benefits? Or put another way: do the do-gooders live under their own policies?
For example, does Congress live under Obamacare? Of course not!
We must recognize that while many things sound beneficial, some only appear beneficial but cause foreseeable externalities that are worse than the problem they are trying to solve.
We must also recognize that pathological left cannot self-diagnose. But we can, because they will disregard all efforts to convince them they’re wrong, regardless of your reasons, your data, or their level of education or intelligence.
In most cases, they will fall back on the standard excuses as your “confirmation bias” or a “lack of sufficient data,” or claim that there’s negatives to all solutions and we can’t change horses midstream.
Worse: they’ll claim the only reason you “hate” their policy (notice the emotional language) is because you’re [evil, bigoted, compromised, a “Fox News” watcher, etc.] that “hates” their intended victim (or recipient, if you prefer).
In such cases, rather than arguing the facts, take away their feeling of moral superiority. Rebrand their fix as a self-serving nonsense. Deny them the emotional fix and force them back to the table.
Why? Because otherwise, they’ll try to win the public debate with “hate-branding” despite the facts, despite the statistics, despite the obvious, because after all, they’re good people, right?
“While our hearts are in the right place, we feel, after running the data through our think tanks and making financial PowerPoints, it seems, with all due respect, that refugee settlements in the USA are problematic…”
“How xenophobic, to make the whole world American! You think that refugee wants to give up his home, his community, his religion, language, his human dignity and start over as your pool boy? What a bunch of disgusting elitist claptrap…”
Yes, that sounds argumentative, but sane policy makers have too long assumed that they’re debating good people with good intentions.
They’re not. The reality is, those with pathological altruism are monsters posing as decent people. They would rather appear morally superior than actually serve others and solve problems. They would rather destroy US communities and poor cultures the world over rather than consider other solutions that don’t give them their emotional fix. And they will NEVER admit they were wrong.
That makes them both wrong and assholes. Don’t let them win.
Pathological Altruism Resources
If you want a more information on this alarming mental condition, read: “Concepts and implications of altruism bias and pathological altruism,” by Oakland University systems engineer Barbara Oakley.
For a more comprehensive list of leftist pathological altruism gone wild, read J.R. Dunn’s Death by Liberalism
Dunn indicts liberals for interventionist big-government policies that have sparked “mass negligent homicide.” From fuel-efficiency standards that promote unsafe small cars, to environmental regulations protecting mountain lions, and the phase-out of ozone-depleting chloro-fluorocarbons, and much much more, he reveals that leftist policies are not governed by logic.”
The results are catastrophic. How many millions of dead Africans from malaria, Kulaks from starvation, or [name the country] from socialism, will it take from us to see that leftist policies don’t work?
Stay in Touch
Reducing the impact of leftism, statism, and other negative influences can be difficult. Let’s do it together.
If you have suggestions for resetting our cultural conversation, or just want to be kept up-to-date, send me a question or comment.
communicate with each other."