Saturday, July 17, 2010

Sociopaths in the news: psychics

Under the headline, "Portland man accuses Hawthorne psychic of defrauding him of $150,000 including cash, Rolexes and a Hummer":
Drakar Druella was struggling with wrenching emotional problems last October when he walked into the Hawthorne Psychic Shop in Southeast Portland for a palm reading and met Cathy Stevens.

Over the next seven weeks he would give the psychic $150,000 in cash and gifts so she could rid him of his "negative energy" and heal him. Druella says the 39-year-old woman was so convincing, he didn't realize he was being scammed until he heard Stevens launch into the same story with another client.

"That's when it all went 'click, click, click,' " said Druella, 42, who called police in November and is now filing for personal bankruptcy. "The people she was taking advantage of were so vulnerable and in so much emotional pain."

According to the police search warrant affidavit and an interview with Druella, he first paid Stevens $265 for advice on Oct. 8. She told him he had "negative energy" and a demon attached to him, and she could help him get rid of it. But in order to do so, she said she'd need $22,000 to buy a "tabernacle" and she'd conduct an exorcism. She instructed him not to say anything to others and also asked him to turn over to her his personal journals.

Druella said he grew to view Stevens like a "mom" and believed she was "saving " him from death. On one occasion, he went to Lloyd Center with Stevens, and bought four Rolex watches , totaling $37,840. Stevens told him she needed a special component in the watches, also to use toward his healing, he said.

"I've never seen anybody as convincing as her. She could cry on will. Her display of emotion and authenticity. She becomes what you want and need her to be," Druella said.

San Francisco fraud investigator Greg Ovanessian, who teaches nationally about fortune-telling frauds, transient criminals and the gypsy culture, said the question often is raised: "How can someone be so stupid to give this much money for some ritual? It's easier for people to say when they don't have a real understanding of the situation most of these clients, or victims, are in," he said. "They're essentially in a very vulnerable state and are susceptible to suggestion and trickery. People want to believe that things are going to get better. That doesn't mean they deserve to be ripped off."

Madden and Druella suspect that other victims may be too humiliated to come forward. "To others, I'd say , please speak up. Don't be ashamed," Druella said. "Though I'm embarrassed and humiliated, this is about someone who is a predator, who preys upon the vulnerable."
I love gypsies.


  1. It's not that tough.

    I was mulling over artists to hire from a free-lancing website, and one of the artists I was considering working with had an emotional fit when I told him I didn't think his work was worth what he was charging. He was insulting me, yelling at me, oh man, you should've seen it.

    So a couple weeks later, I had this idea, and I wrote him an intentionally poorly written email full of made-up words, countries, positions, basically telling him that his art had caught our eye. We wanted him to do some work on our national monuments (obviously for a hefty sum). The guy was ready to pay cold hard cash to make things "get better," and it didn't matter that everything I said was intentionally fishy and obvious bullshit. Eventually I told him we had the wrong artist, that we'd meant to contact someone else, but he was very persistent. He was practically begging me to take his money. (obviously I shoved his dreams down his throat and told him he wasn't up to par, didn't take his money)

    I can only imagine what a skilled con man could do to people like this. It's a little frightening.

  2. Anon for this comment onlyJuly 17, 2010 at 4:47 PM

    I live in Portland and heard about this woman while reading reviews on Yelp. This town is full of wonderful crazies. Not sure who is dumb enough to give $150k to a "psychic", no matter how desperate you are...yikes.

    On a similar note, a couple of days ago my best friend and her boyfriend went to a psychic in the midwest... the woman told her she had found her soulmate, but told him that he had not. She definitely picked up on the one-sidedness of the relationship, I'd say. Went on to tell him that something was very wrong, but if he bought her a couple candles ($100!!!) she could go to a church to do some praying crap or whatever. Pretty funny.

  3. The woman may be a predator, but when the sheep throw themselves into her mouth, how can you blame her?

    1. That is the sociopath's rationalization for doing things like this. If "prey" is stupid enough to associate with me, they deserve it!

  4. Easy. All she had to do was refrain.

    It's not like she's actually a "predator," or these people are really "sheep." Let's get over these idiotic metaphors for a minute.

    She's a greedy old hag, not a wolf.
    He's a gullible man, not a sheep.

    OK, now, back to the metaphors. Humanity is the lion pride, and sociopaths are hyenas. You don't usually make fresh kills. You rob them from others. You're not predators. You're scavengers. And just like real scavengers, you live in fear of the predators getting pissed that you're taking their kills, because if they find out, and they can catch you, you'll be fucking destroyed.

    Just like this dumb old hag.

    That's the reality of the situation.

  5. Well put Peter Pan. For this situation, anyway.

    However, your metaphor doesn't quite hold water when it comes to someone like Bernie Madoff.

  6. They deserved it for believing in that crap.

    1. That is what you'd like to think I'm sure. But it could happen to you. There is always going to be someone smarter than you and better equipped to manipulate you than you are of them.

  7. Nah, he's a scavenger, too.

    Predators kill prey to survive.
    Scavengers eat scraps and/or steal resources from other animals. Parasites live entirely on the backs of other creatures.

    There's no need to metaphorically liken stealing resources with getting a kill, because the terms scavenger and parasite already exist. The wolf/sheep wannabe sociopaths are guilty of the same sort of self deception they blame empaths for.

    Madoff is in the same boat as this nasty hag. Stole resources, got caught, life revoked in response. Assuming anything else is no different from a victim assuming the sociopath is evil and 100% to blame for their problems. It's mixing up the facts to appeal to their image of themselves.

    Logically, there's no reason to resist the idea of being scavengers or parasites. The only purpose it serves is making them feel better about themselves.

  8. PP: "Humanity is the lion pride, and sociopaths are hyenas. You don't usually make fresh kills. You rob them from others. You're not predators. You're scavengers. And just like real scavengers, you live in fear of the predators getting pissed that you're taking their kills, because if they find out, and they can catch you, you'll be fucking destroyed."

    Peter, when did you get a fetish for putting yourself above sociopaths?

    It's really hot, man. I just want you.

  9. I don't know, 2, when did you start allowing cultural bias to cloud that so-called rationality of yours? What's wrong with being a parasite? You are what you are. Enjoy it!

    If you start fancying yourself a true blue predator, you'll wind up in prison with the other dumb shits who couldn't recognize their place in the world. Self deception is a dangerous thing, my friend.

  10. "i love gypsies

    i'm a gypsy. do you love me?

  11. PP: "I don't know, 2, when did you start allowing cultural bias to cloud that so-called rationality of yours? What's wrong with being a parasite? You are what you are. Enjoy it!"

    I stopped considering myself a sociopath quite a while ago.

    But, you sorta missed my question. Your comment seems to portray a hidden narcissism in yourself. I think you may be putting sociopaths down because you are not one. (And therefore you are above them...)

    PS. I kinda see this theme in your comments every now and then. That's the only reason I decided to ask.

  12. So it seems sociopaths are either predators or parasites, depending who you are talking to. Either the very top or the very bottom of the intra-species food chain. There is no winning this argument, same as with politics, religion, evolution, ad nauseam.

    Everyone just jerking off without a point or a climax. Yep, sounds like humanity to me.

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  15. Peter, I hope don't delete your comments. It's one of the more honest and truly self-aware, non-ego driven comments I've read on this site.

    One way to look at things:

    People who call themselves "predators" like to bask in the glory of pulling one off on whoever while at the same time calling themselves "above" everyone... what they don't get is that they are just conformists when it comes down to it, just as much as anyone else. Sheep, if you will, playing the Western game of "winning" that we are all told through media and whatnot is the point of life. They are at the mercy of the so called "weak", everything they do. Slaves, like most everyone else, pretending to be masters. Who apparently haven't read enough Dostoevsky.

    Power is, in the end, at the beck and call of the public.

  16. Dammit, motherfucker!

  17. Peter, why did you delete your comments? I was truly wanting to see your response to what I said.

  18. I'm sure you were, 2.

    I was a little too open in my last comments, so I deleted them. I'm really not too keen on being open, especially on sites like this.

  19. Was actually probably a smart move.

    Very little point in answering to anybody, or having the last word, or needing to prove a point, or to explain oneself except for ego reasons and entertainment. True self-awareness needs none of that, no matter who or what you are.

    Yeah that sounds glib, but it's true. Self-deceived people see only the current battle to be won, others have their sights on the war. And the only war that counts is the internal one.

    And blah blah blah blah off my soapbox I go.

    1. I sent something to that effect to my sociopathic ex. Life is all about winning for him, so I taunted him, saying I won. He didn't understand what I meant by that though. He just got pissed off by it. Ha ha ha. I can see why it's so fun to play with peoples heads now. It's even more fun not to have to feel guilty about it.

  20. Funny, when I lived in Houston during Hurricane Ike in 2008, that there were a number of psychic-palm readers businesses/homes destroyed by the hurricane. You would think they would have foreseen it.

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  28. A good psychic is one whose able to predict the past and the present. And thats not hard if you tell me everything about your past and present. So i can learn from patterns what is probable. Not hard.

  29. YOU fools have no idea of what it is like to be a Sociopath, I am an Alienated Sociopath, and I literally cannot build a real relationship with anyone because I don't know how to be "Real" so in a sense it is hard not to fake it or manipulate because that seems to be the only way of having any social activity possible, otherwise you can only talk formal and trust me it can be hard to build a relationship formally

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