It frightens me to think that Boris Johnson displays many of the characteristics that are diagnosed in the personalities of psychopaths. If one examines his utterances and actions, from his childhood days in the hallowed halls of Eton College, through his undergraduate years at Oxford and out into the world of work, one not only finds that they are not only droplets of disdain for society but taken together, they form a deep reservoir of shallowness and depravity that ought to condemn him to be included in an elite group of deranged, dysfunctional individuals, who had they been born into more illustrious families, would have been locked up in an asylum for their own and the publics protection.
A recent tweet of a letter written to Boris’s father Stanley Johnson on the 10th April 1982, by Martin Hammond, Master in College, Eton, highlighted that from an early age the young Boris Johnson displayed a number of behavioural problems; he lacked any notion of personal responsibility whilst displaying a grandiose sense of self worth. The Master’s short note intimates that there are at least seven of the twenty symptoms associated with individuals suffering from psychopathy, that can be ticked off the checklist devised by Canadian psychiatrist, Dr Robert Hare. The letter reads:
“Boris really has adopted a disgracefully cavalier attitude to his classical studies. It is a question of priorities, which most of his colleagues have no difficulty in sorting out. Boris sometimes seems affronted when criticised for what amounts to a gross failure of responsibility (and surprised at the same time that he was not appointed Captain of the School for next half). I think he honestly believes that it is churlish of us not to regard him as an exception, one who should be free of the obligation which binds everyone else.”
Dr Hare’s checklist reads:
1 – Glibness / superficial charm
2 – Grandiose sense of self worth
3 – Need for stimulation / proneness to boredom
4 – Pathological lying
5 – Cunning / manipulative
6 – Lack of remorse or guilt
7 – Shallow affect
8 – Lack of empathy / callous
9 – Parasitic lifestyle
10 – Poor behavioural controls
11 – Promiscuous sexual behaviour
12 – Early behavioural problems
13 – Lack of realistic long term goals
14 – Impulsivity
15 – Irresponsibility
16 – Failure to accept responsibility for one’s own actions
17 – Many short term marital relationships
18 – Juvenile delinquency
19 – Revocation of conditional release
20 – Criminal versatility
Boris has always felt that he was a cut above the rest, not bound by basic human virtues like honesty, compassion, good manners or respect. His membership of the notorious Oxford University haut cuisine fraternity, the Bullingdon Club, is something of legend. It is infamous for deliberately destroying the restaurants that had the misfortune of agreeing to host their soirées and for paying the damages at the scene and in cash, thus demonstrating to the management, the waiters, barmen, chefs and all and sundry the superiority of their financial and social status.
In 1990 Boris received a telephone call from an Oxford / Bullingdon buddy, Darius Guppy who was requesting his assistance regarding a rather sinister matter. Guppy required the house address of a journalist, Stuart Collier, who had been investigating his improprieties. Mr Guppy thought that breaking Mr Colliers legs would be a sufficient punishment for the investigator conducting his inquiries – Boris Johnson obliged and provided the details.
His former employer at the Times newspaper had to sack Johnson for inventing quotes for his articles. Another boss Michael Howard, who was then leader of the Conservative Party, had to fire him too, after Johnson refused to resign for lying to him over the authenticated story of one of his extra marital affairs that had culminated in two aborted pregnancies. Another former employer, Canadian tycoon Conrad Black, described Boris as “ineffably duplicitous”. As Mayor of London Johnson felt that it would be impossible to sustain his lavish lifestyle on the yearly salary of £150 000, therefore requested that the Daily Telegraph retain him on their staff at the rate of £250 000 a year. They agreed, on the understanding that Mr Johnson donated one fifth to a charitable organisation providing bursaries to students. Unsurprisingly, Boris never bothered to keep his end of the deal.
Number 20, “Criminal versatility”, springs to mind. Number 9, “Parasitic lifestyle”, is another that jumps out from Dr Hare’s list. Number 1, “Glibness”, number 5, “Cunning / manipulative”, number 6, “Lack of remorse or guilt”, number 8, “Lack of empathy / callous”, impulsivity and irresponsibility. What a list. In two short statements by or about Boris Johnson, most of the boxes on Dr Robert Hare’s checklist have been ticked that have kept many an appellant behind bars – sometimes for the duration of their lives.
The liberty that Johnson takes with the truth of facts and the promiscuousness of his nature, as evidenced by his repeated extra-marital affairs, are two of the character traits associated with the most dangerous and feared citizens of societies. His family, friends and foes all agree that Boris Johnson is a ruthless personality; determined to get to the top, any which way, and is unafraid to trample over the truth, the law or anyone who happens to be in his path to power.
To be so close to reaching the political pinnacle of the (dis) United Kingdom must make one think and question whether or not it is appropriate that such a man, who unapologetically behaves in such a manner, should hold any position of authority over the people that he, and his chosen cabinet of ministers, would govern. There ought to be, at the very least, some sympathy, if not empathy, shown from the governors to the governed, after all they were elected to their lofty, privileged positions by the citizenry in good faith, a citizenry who gave this anointed class the benefit of the doubt when they claimed to be honourable, decent, community minded people. It strikes me that the Right Honourable Boris Johnson M.P is not the kind of man who fits the bill as a future Prime Minister serving the country at Her Majesty’s pleasure, but rather as a prisoner who should be serving a long custodial sentence, detained for the safety of himself and others, in an appropriate hospital, at Her Majesty’s pleasure.
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