I gave many examples, like leaving a wallet at the scene of the crime ... and then reporting it stolen. I now have a case that ranks close to the top. My client, after being questioned by police and jailed, called his girlfriend. During the call he made incriminating statements, despite a loudly intrusive recording that blared every 60 seconds that warned speakers that such calls are monitored and taped.
In my post, I noted that people - not just our clients - act contrary to their best interests so often that it can be called the norm, not an aberration. In fact, supposedly smart people - like Bill Clinton and Dick Nixon - commit reckless acts that satisfy immediate urges without considering the consequences. The drive for sex, money, power and other elemental desires often overwhelms caution, reason, or religious teachings - uh, abusing priests, q.e.d.
Today’s L.A. Times contains an article that confirms my thesis. Discussing South Carolina Mark Sanford’s revelations, the article notes:
"Experts have all kinds of theories about why otherwise intelligent men -- and it's almost always men -- behave so recklessly. Sex and power are inextricably intertwined, as Henry Kissinger famously noted, and some politicians have a hard time reining in the urge for either. ‘If you're one of these Master of the Universe kind of guys, you get to a place where you feel that the rules don't apply to you,’ said Pepper Schwartz, a University of
Washington sociologist who specializes in relationships.
"Frank Farley, a Temple University psychologist, even coined a term -- the ‘Type T personality’ -- to describe politicians' predilection for philandering. The "T" stands for thrill-seeker, which describes the kind of person drawn to a career that, by its nature, requires a willingness to step out of ordinary life and take risks."‘It's not a 9-to-5 job,’ said Farley, a former president of the merican Psychological Assn. who has extensively studied politicians' behavior. ‘It has very high levels of uncertainty, variety, novelty, challenge, unpredictability -- and therefore it attracts a certain kind of person.’ The positive side of that risk-taking is a willingness to expose oneself to that most public of examinations: an election campaign. The downside, Farley said, is relenting to personal urges, like drugs, alcohol or an extramarital dalliance.
"‘It's almost built into their personalities,’ he said of many officeholders. ‘Put it together with the opportunities they have, and we should not be shocked when we see it happening.’ "Why the risk? ‘It's hard to understand this if you have not been in passionate love, and it's particularly intense when it's star-crossed,’ Schwartz said. ‘You are pumping adrenaline, testosterone and dopamine -- it's a drug cocktail; you are
intoxicated. And you know what kind of decision we make when we are intoxicated.’"