LOS ANGELES—Two studies released this year indicate that your boss—whoever s/he is—is more likely than not to be a porn-loving narcissist. The studies were conducted separately from one another, and neither comes to that specific conclusion—rather, they each make separate conclusions regarding narcissistic behavior and predilections—but I don't really care about any of that. My own superior powers of deduction prove that my conclusions about these studies are irrefutable.
One of the two studies was reported on in February of this year. According to HuffPo UK, the researchers "conducted a study of 3,200 candidates applying for leadership training at Norwegian armed forces officer schools," where they "had to undergo a structured standardized interview designed to assess leadership potential. As part of the study, they were also given a personality test that measured narcissistic traits."
The results were rather predictable. "Those who scored highly for narcissism also did well in the admission interviews and were more likely to be accepted as officer cadets," reported HuffPo.
The lead researcher in that study, Christian Gimso from the BI Norwegian Business School, said, "The study indicates that candidates with a high degree of narcissistic traits do better in the admission interview than candidates with a lower degree of narcissism. They are also more likely to be admitted."
The other study, which was published in the May 2014 issue of Sex & Marital Therapy, was conducted by researchers from the University of Houston–Clear Lake, who, according to Melissa Dahl at New York magazine, "tested narcissism levels on the participants, most of whom were heterosexual women between 18 and 61 years of age, using a standard 40-item questionnaire."
Dahl continues, "They found that the higher respondents scored on the narcissism scale, the more likely they were to say they’d ever watched pornography; this held true even when excluding answers from men, who in this study and previous ones cop to watching more porn. And among the people who watched porn, higher narcissism was correlated with more hours watching internet porn."
These results were also rather predictable. As Dahl observes, "Past research has shown that the more control narcissists have over sex, the more gratifying the experience tends to be, the researchers note—and this could help explain the narcissism-porn connection."
That need for control extends naturally to the web, where "the online-porn viewer is able to click around until he or she finds exactly their idealized sexual imagery."
But again, all of this is painfully apparent to me. Utilizing a standard syllogistic calculation, I quickly come to the obvious and immediate uber-conclusion that these two studies indicate a high likelihood that the majority of upper management in any company or organization (including the government) are individuals who exhibit extreme narcissistic disorder combined with an obsessive-compulsive need to consume copious amounts of pornography. Needless to say, I don't expect anyone else to understand the nuances of what I'm saying, but that's just the price I pay for being me.
(Nothing in this silly story is meant to indicate that I don't take seriously personality disorders that embrace extreme narcissistic behavior, which I have so miserably tried to emulate here. It's just that the juxtaposition of these two studies was just too irresistible, as was the ease with which editors took the findings and crafted headlines that suggest, but do not quite say, that one (narcissism or porn) causes the other (porn or narcissism), rather than there just being a correlation between the two. Case in point; New York magazine’s heading, “Narcissists Watch More Internet Porn,” which is certainly not proven even by the one study, at least not enough to make such an all-encompassing claim. But then, I did the same thing with my headline. That said, even the abstract (see below) for the Narcissism & Internet Porn Use study carefully uses the word “correlated” as the actionable verb, even when it observes that even one encounter with internet porn correlates with “higher levels of all three measures of narcissism!”)
This study examined the relationship between Internet pornography use and Narcissism. Participants (N = 257) completed an online survey that included questions on Internet pornography use and three narcissism measures (i.e., Narcissistic Personality Inventory, Pathological Narcissistic Inventory, and the Index of Sexual Narcissism). The hours spent viewing Internet pornography use was positively correlated to participant's narcissism level. Additionally, those who have ever used Internet pornography endorsed higher levels of all three measures of narcissism than those who have never used Internet pornography.