Ponerology is the study of evil. This is a short introduction.
Pathocracy is rule by psychopaths. That is what the U.S., Britain and some other countries have become: pathocracies.
Psychopaths are people who have little or no conscience, who care basically only about themselves and don't care about others, except for how others can help them gain possessions, power, protection, conveniences etc. Psychopaths have a little less than average intelligence..., but they're very good at conning normal people into obtaining things for them and protecting them from exposure. They program normal people into believing that all people are inherently good in order to avoid being discovered by them.
They are aware of being different as they obtain their life experience and become familiar with different ways of fighting for their goals. Their world is forever divided into "us and them" - their world with its own laws and customs and that other foreign world [of normal people who condemn their immoral world].
Their "sense of honor" bids them cheat and revile that other human world and its values. In contradiction to the customs of normal people, they feel non-fulfillment of their promises or obligations is customary [proper] behavior.
They also learn how their personalities can have traumatizing effects on the personalities of those normal people, and how to take advantage of this root of terror for purposes of reaching their goals.
Susceptible people, who are influenced by psychopaths to imitate psychopathic behavior and thinking, are sociopaths.
Psychopaths make up about 6% of the population. Sociopaths make up about 12%.
In any society in this world, psychopathic individuals and some of the other deviants create a ponerogenically active network of common collusions, partially estranged from the community of normal people.
They dream of a world in which their simple and radical way of experiencing and perceiving reality [i.e. lying, cheating, destroying, using others, etc] would dominate, where they would, of course, be assured safety and prosperity. Those "others" [normal people] - different, but also more technically skillful - [they think] should be put to work to achieve this goal. "We," after all, will create a new government, one of justice [for psychopaths]. They are prepared to fight and suffer for the sake of such a brave new world, and also of course, to inflict suffering upon others. Such a vision justifies killing people whose suffering does not move them to compassion because "they" are not quite conspecific [the same species as psychopaths].
The lack of psychological knowledge among the general public and the general neurosis of most people, make them vulnerable to such predators.