US presidential candidate Donald Trump possesses stronger psychopathic tendencies than Adolf Hitler, a study has suggested.
Research from the University of Oxford assessed this year’s candidates for the White House to determine how highly they ranked on the psychopath scale.
They were scored on a number of personality traits typical in psychopaths — including fearlessness, cold-heartedness, and egocentricity.
While the study found Mr Trump’s score puts him in the company of some of history’s greatest despots, including Hitler and Ugandan dictator Idi Amin, opponent Hillary Clinton found herself alongside Napoleon Bonaparte and Emperor Nero.
The study contended that although psychopathy — typically associated with remorseless killers — exists along a spectrum, some people can possess certain qualities without developing murderous intent.
It claimed that it was not just barbarous leaders who populated the upper echelons of the rankings — as figures such as Saint Paul and even Jesus appeared high on the psychopathic leaderboard.
It added that possessing such tendencies might not be to the presidential candidates’ detriment, as the right combination of psychopathic characteristics can make for a good leader.
Study author Kevin Dutton said: “The PPI-R does not say that someone is or is not a psychopath. It scores them on eight traits that contribute to a psychopathic character.
“Some of those traits, such as fearlessness or stress immunity, can be positive. Others, such as blame externalisation or being unconcerned about the future, are more likely to be negative. One, cold-heartedness, can contribute to good and bad leadership.
“Both great and terrible leaders score higher than the general population for psychopathic traits, but it is the mix of those traits that determines success.
“For example, someone who scores highly for being influential, fearless and cold hearted could be a decisive leader who can make dispassionate decisions. If those traits are accompanied by a high score on blaming others, they might be a genocidal demagogue.”
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