Friday, April 9, 2021

 Nine Moves Ahead

Three percent of men and one percent of women are estimated to be sociopaths by the American Society of Psychoanalysis Physicians. This data means four and a half million male sociopaths may roam the country. Some are, no doubt, brilliant. Authors of mystery/thrillers often feature the crimes of brilliant sociopaths who like cerebral chess masters pensively plan many moves ahead of law enforcement and private investigators. The pieces on a criminal psychopath’s boards are brilliantly positioned to assure victim submission.  They have placed their queen in a critical position to ensure checkmate if one false move is made by law enforcement or the protagonist.  The bad guys place the equivalent of a rook in position to influence a forensic outcome.  A knight is positioned to encourage criminals to act aggressively to pursue their own evil self-interests. Even their ponds are equally well-positioned.  

Brilliant criminals think as much as nine moves ahead.  The best law enforcement can do if they keep playing their opponents game is hope for a stalemate.  Or maybe not. 

Mystery/thrillers almost always have protagonists that out-maneuver criminals at their own game.  For every brilliant psychopath/sociopath there is an even more clever crime solver who thinks ten moves ahead, uses the latest technology, and institutes a paradigm change in the way this life-threatening game is played.

It’s good over evil.  

Jed O’Dea is the author of mystery/thrillers.

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