If you don’t know what “ponerology” means, you should. It’s the “science on the nature of evil adjusted for political purposes.” No matter how much you “hate Trump” (and most of my friends do), please read this post all the way through.
The term “ponerology” comes from this book:
Here’s one review, on goodreads.com. Interesting that it’s dated less than two months prior to 9/11.
Imagine searching through the vaults of the secret police in some future dystopia. You find a tattered volume among the files that immediately strikes your interest. You begin to read, and it tells the story of a secret group of scientists unsympathetic to the regime in power. These men and women risked their lives to understand and diagnose the sickness of their society, the pathology of the leaders subjugating their populace. Not only did they identify the root causes of the evil that plagued their government and society, they gave knowledge necessary to make a change, all in rich, scientific detail. But the Party got hold if it. The public never got to read it.
This is what it felt like reading this book, because it’s essentially true. Andrew Lobaczewski was one of a group of scientists in Eastern Europe operating during the Soviets’ harsh regime. They literally diagnosed their leaders – as psychopaths – and described how and why they came to power, in clinical detail. But slowly they were either killed or ‘disappeared’, or otherwise taken care of. Dr. Lobaczewski escaped with his life, and his manuscript, but it would be twenty-odd years before it was published. Thank God it was.
This book was a revelation for me. So many of its sections, even single sentences, contain so much substance and truth that it’s almost overwhelming. Lobaczewski describes social cycles, psychopathic types, dangerous cognitive errors, pathological systems of government, religion and science, and introduces new terms for concepts that may have been previously described, but only in vague terms, like ‘pathocracy’, ‘ponerization’, ‘ponerology’, ‘ponerogenic unions’ and others. The book is dense, but the subject matter is dense. It requires close reading, and every page contains insight and clarity. It delves into the darkest of subject matter – murder, oppression, genocide, torture, black propaganda, total inhumanity – with precision and conscience.
Ponerology literally means the study of evil. Political Ponerology (*****) expands the study to the realm of politics, where psychopaths can affect billions. I’d say it’s one of the top five most important books ever written. It’ll never leave my bookshelf, and even though I’ve read it a handful of times, I expect I’ll read it many more times in the future.