(Turns out I was correct about why I felt trashy. Reading this Charlton post reminded me that it’s been months since I did a proper RAM dump, so I did one this morning and realized I am really, really close to a Grand Unified Theory of psychology. No wonder I felt awful. This post is just the lowest-hanging fruit of the bunch, and there are more to come.)
So why do we have this instinctual reaction, in spite of the fact that many of them have very good testosterone and they are all probably stronger than they look (Christian Laettner particularly)? In fact, the righteous wrath of such a person is terrible to behold.
It’s because we recognize they are 1) benevolent and 2) emotionally unsophisticated.
1) Benevolence. In psycho-speak we might call this “prosocial” instead, referring to the default CNS behavior toward their fellow man. A chronic niceguy is predisposed to friendliness and altruism (bordering on pathological), particularly toward people they’ve just met. Such a person only has two mental categories: us (tribe to be supported) and reality (to be overcome through observation and hard work). They are inclined to believe that everyone else is generally good (in-group), except for maybe 1% of the population who must be broken somehow, and watched carefully (material reality, out-group). My dad often used to explain to me that this is how the world is).
2) Emotional simplicity. Nice guys do not suffer from cognitive dissonance because they don’t experience conflicting emotions. Things are either “good” (amygdala quiet) or “bad” (amygdala is activated). Other people are also either good or bad, and “antiheroes” are a confusing concept for them (whereas they are catnip to repressed sadists). Because they are adapted to an altruistic, prosocial milieu, they are also incapable of deception. Every emotion they feel is immediately displayed on their faces, and they tend to assume that everyone else’s face is similarly honest, via mistaken theory of mind (projection).
Other people see this as a sort of retardation, considering nice guys to be a particular sort of idiot, which most of the time they are. This must be disambiguated from the presence of strong emotions (big amygdala, whether complicated or not) and low core shielding (as Koanic calls it), which is indicated by very large eyes. It is possible to have small eyes and weak emotional responses, and still be emotionally unsophisticated, and therefore look like the same sort of gullible idiot. This seems to be common among genuinely HFA folks like Quentin Tarantino and Ari Emanuel, and men with gentle giant syndrome, like Nikolai Valuev, Andre the Giant, and The Rock.
It must also be disambiguated from social retardation due to deep sockets, about which I theorized yonder.