To write about Keith Raniere being possibly abused as a child isn’t excusing Raniere. It is looking at his environment and how it could have affected how and what shaped his particular “madnesses.”
It is clear that he has had his own huge hangups around how he wanted to control, especially females, and also that he was compelled to be sexually abusive in certain, quite specific ways. His case is uncommon. He set up the whole environment. He ran it. He is infamous for Nxivm, for DOS and for being a conman who didn’t get caught for years and years.
He is what is called a highly “organized criminal” and also one with a lot of followers. People have been willing to do crazy, stupid, illegal and even lethal things for Raniere. This is extreme criminality with him as the overlord, not run of the mill. It is, in fact, not intelligent to leave him unanalyzed because there’s a lot to learn from studying psychopaths, sociopaths, “monsters.”
Not every monster likes or tries to do the exact same things to satisfy his inner demons. Far from it. He will be studied as Charles Manson has been studied – in detail. He is not easy to define. This is despite anyone’s idea to just call him a monster or “demon” and to be satisfied with such an elementary and shallow, sweeping judgment. Comments saying that add very little that is worthwhile, like saying a Hershey’s bar is brown. Yeah we know that. So what?
Raniere had to have a certain atmosphere, much more detailed and exacting than is usual. He was not a guy whose turn-ons were as simple as many rapists or abusers. Raniere had to feel like a “God” figure, too. He had to be worshiped, he wanted women deprived of food and reasonable amounts of sleep. He encouraged criminality to be done in his name, like Manson. He wanted a whole world of his own, where he was supreme.
Far from excusing him, I think it would be best for everyone if Raniere never gets out of confinement. I think he will never be able to control himself and that it is very, very obvious. Again, I am trying to get more understanding of Raniere’s specific elements. Trying to see whatever caused him to be who he is does not exonerate him for who he is or what he’s done.
We still study Hitler, as an individual, what made him tick. No one is excusing him for what he made of it. This seems so simple to understand. People research, study, write dissertations about Hitler, even now. Not everyone just sits at keyboards casting useless stones like, “Yeah, Hitler was bad.” Essentially that is useless input that contributes nothing more than a grunt.