Streams

Why Some Politicians Are More Dangerous than Others

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Psychiatrist and author James Gilligan explains his findings that in times of high unemployment, recession, and other forms of social and economic distress, the United States has experienced high rates of violent death, including suicide and homicide. His book Why Some Politicians Are More Dangerous than Others demonstrates why he believes that politicians and the political process, even in democratic countries, can have tragic consequences for everyone.

Guests:

James Gilligan

Comments [16]

THE PRICE PAID
The Press and comedians are having a ‘field day’ with the Republican candidates. -Their policies are so idiotic. However, it must be considered that there are dire consequences!
My elderly aunt was a devoted Communist.
After the 1933 German election, she confessed to her friends that she voted for Hitler. “WHAT?” her friends screamed. “Are you crazy!”
“No, you will see. His policies will be so outrages, that the German people will never again elect a Fascist regime.”
She was right, of course. The Third Reich lasted only 12 years, while the following Communist government lasted more than half a century.
But, what a price was paid for that lesson, -all the death and the immense destruction!
She and her husband had to flee and live ‘underground’ for a decade. Many times, they almost lost their lives.

Aug. 17 2012 11:47 AM
John Steinmetz from nyc

Oliver Stone recently said, “Memories are short. We have to keep reminding them.”

Democrats and their supporters should constantly note to the public, that present contemporary Republican Political Party philosophy leads to failure, absolutely!

For the last 100 years, [since 1912] Republican Party philosophy has been a failure.
Economic Depressions have always happened under Republican administrations: 1870, 1929 and 2008.
Google it.

So now, we know how Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan intend to end unemployment. They will have Americans kill each other.

Aug. 16 2012 01:32 PM
John Steinmetz from New York City

Oliver Stone recently said, “Memories are short. We have to keep reminding them.”

Democrats and their supporters should constantly note to the public, that present contemporary Republican Political Party philosophy leads to failure, absolutely!

For the last 100 years, [since 1912] Republican Party philosophy has been a failure.
Economic Depressions have always happened under Republican administrations: 1870, 1929 and 2008.
Google it.

So now, we know how Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan intend to end unemployment. They will have Americans kill each other.

Aug. 16 2012 01:03 PM

Very interesting segment.

It is true that casuality is not proven or demonstrated, but the numbers are highly suggestive.

The followers of Ayn Rand do not discuss, or consider, the effects of 'Objectivism' on the population, but increased stress due to extreme economic inequality seems reasonable.

Aug. 16 2012 12:57 PM
tina from Queens

The man that killed his wife and kids over losing his job, had NOTHING TO DO WITH ECONOMIC DEPRESSION! I know quite a few men that lost their jobs these bad economic days, yet they did not go killing their families.
If that man would have blamed the tough economic times for his job loss (as the speaker suggests) he would not have feld ashamed of it and he would have reacted like the majority of population - accepting lows and highs in life and move on.
So, doctor in psychiatry, how about looking at the mental history of men who resort to violence and not at economic factors.

Aug. 16 2012 12:40 PM
fuva from harlemworld

Tim from nyc -- say what?
So socioeconomic exclusion/ stress/ brutality DON'T encourage dysfunction?
If these things make people "become themselves" (or whomever they've been allowed to become under such circumstances), then maybe the absence of such stressers in the lives of others are allowing them to cover "themselves" up...
The unawareness of basic socioeconomic effects is rampant. It does us no good. They should be taught in school.

Aug. 16 2012 12:40 PM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

Correctly or not, purposely or not, the images during the '67 urban riots showed a picture of anarchy.

Whatever the statistical truth that was to be subsequently discovered might have been, those images left a searing impression on the general public, and a great fear of our society a step away from violence.

Aug. 16 2012 12:37 PM
james andrea from Brick, NJ

If the murder rate is factored in and that NYC's rate declined substantially in the early 90s, the argument emerged whether the rate went down due to Giuliani's (Rep.) policing policies or if he benefited from the improved economics of Clinton's policies.

Aug. 16 2012 12:36 PM

Psychiatrist James Gilligan
Issues Urgent Public Health Warning
(based upon scientific evidence)

Republicans Increase the Rate of Violent Death
(contradicting the claims of phrenology and eugenics)

Next week he will be speaking to the NYPD, FBI and the DHS about public health strategies that can effectively curb this threatening phenomenon.

[Yeah right.]

Aug. 16 2012 12:35 PM
tim from nyc

people become themselves under stress. if there are stressers in the environment causing this behavior, the problem is much deeper than the stresser itself. james is blaming the stresser instead of looking for something more significant as a source of the problem.

Aug. 16 2012 12:30 PM
claire from manhattan

To Rachel in Sunset Park: Clinton CREATED good economic times, through smart economic policies, and then of course "enjoyed them."

Aug. 16 2012 12:28 PM
Jerry from nyc

If we had only democratic presidents, wouldn't given rates go down and up anyway?

Aug. 16 2012 12:25 PM
Jay F.

What! Really?

Aug. 16 2012 12:23 PM
Rachel from Sunset Park

What role does the economic expansion/recession play? For example, Clinton enjoyed very good economic times and crime went down.

Aug. 16 2012 12:19 PM
Leonick

How did this crank get on the show? What an embarrassment for WNYC.

Aug. 16 2012 12:13 PM
Janet from NYC

Isn't your guest assuming a causal relationship, rather than a correlation between the variables in his study?

Aug. 16 2012 12:13 PM

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