Ah, the bloviation over the Milgram experiment:
His experiment in its standard form included a fake shock machine, a “teacher,” a “learner” and an experimenter in a laboratory setting. The participant was told that he or she had to teach the student to memorize a pair of words, and the punishment for a wrong answer was a shock from the machine.
The teacher sat in front of the shock machine, which had 30 levers, each corresponding to an additional 15 volts. With each mistake the student made, the teacher had to pull the next lever to deliver a more painful punishment.
While the machine didn’t generate shocks and a recorded voice track simulated painful reactions, the teacher was led to believe that he or she was shocking a student, who screamed and asked to leave at higher voltages, and eventually fell silent.
If the teacher questioned continuing as instructed, the experimenter simply said, “The experiment requires that you go on.”
About 65 percent of participants pulled levers corresponding to the maximum voltage — 450 volts — in spite of the screams of agony from the learner.
When you define having personal power as satisfying the centralized representative of the Crowd, of course you’re going to get people will to shock others. Screw morality, the only morality is getting ahead — in the ways accepted by the crowd.
So get that official representative of the Crowd out there, and he’ll tell you it’s OK to go crazy, and you will. Torture that idiot, because it’s now Officially Approved(tm) and it will get you ahead.
In addition, we’re all so sick of how frustrating this society is that hurting someone sounds awesome about now, doesn’t it? That’s why we have so much road rage and bar fights.