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  • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 10:55 on September 23, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , aggressive, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   

    The Sneaky Bastard’s (Sociopath) Playbook 

    The Sociopath's PlaybookExcerpt from BOOK REVIEW: The 48 Laws of Power By Ox Drover

    Many times on Lovefraud, bloggers have joked with me that a particular phrase or behavior “came out of the ‘Psychopath’s play book,’“ the kind of book in which a football team would write all their usual plays.

    I recently bought a book entitled, The 48 Laws of Power, by Robert Greene, because it sounded like an interesting book. But the more I got into it, I realized that the heretofore-thought-mythical “Psychopathic Play book” does exist, and this is it!

    Robert Greene, by the way, also wrote The Art of Seduction.

    Here’s what the jacket blurb on the back of The 48 Laws of Power says about its content:

    The best-selling book for those who want POWER, watch POWER, or want to arm themselves against POWER. Amoral, cunning, ruthless and instructive, this piercing work distills three thousand years of the history of power into forty-eight well explicated laws. As attention-grabbing in its design as in its content, this bold volume outlines the laws of power in their unvarnished essence, synthesizing the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun Tzu, Carol Von Clausewitz and other great thinkers. Some laws require prudence, some stealth, some total absence of mercy, but like it or not, all have applications in real-life situations. Illustrated through the tactics of Queen Elizabeth I, Henry Kissinger, P. T. Barnum, and other famous figures who have wielded, or been victimized by power, these laws will fascinate any reader interested in gaining, observing, or defending against ultimate control.

    The 48 laws are listed in the contentsWolf in Sheep's Clothing

    Law 1: Never outshine the master

    Law 2: Never put too much trust in friends, learn how to use enemies

    Law 3: Conceal your intentions

    Law 4: Always say less than necessary

    Law 5: So much depends on reputation—guard it with your life

    Law 6: Court attention at all cost

    Law 7: Get others to do the work for you, but always take the credit

    Law 8: Make other people come to you—use bait if necessary

    Law 9: Win through your actions, never through argument

    Law 10: Infection: avoid the unhappy and unlucky

    Law 11: Learn to keep people dependent on you

    LiesLaw 12: Use selective honesty and generosity to disarm your victim

    Law 13: When asking for help, appeal to people’s self-interest, never to their mercy or gratitude

    Law 14: Pose as a friend, work as a spy

    Law 15: Crush your enemy totally

    Law 16: Use absence to increase respect and honor

    Law 17: Cultivate an air of unpredictability

    Law 18: Do not built fortresses to protect yourself, isolation is dangerous

    Law 19: Know who you’re dealing with—do not offend the wrong person

    Law 20: Do not commit to anyone

    Law 21: Play a sucker to catch a sucker—seem dumber than your mark

    Law 22: Use the surrender tactic: Transform weakness into power

    Law 23: Concentrate your forces

    Law 24: Play the perfect courtier

    Get a makeoverLaw 25: Re-create yourself

    Law 26: Keep your hands clean

    Law 27: Play on people’s ‘need to believe’ to create a cult-like following

    Law 28: Enter action with boldness

    Law 29: Play all the way to the end

    Law 30: Make your accomplishments seem effortless

    Law 31: Control the options: Get others to play with the cards you deal

    Law 32: Play to people’s fantasies

    Law 33: Discover each man’s thumb screw

    Law 34:Be royal in your own fashion: Act like a king to be treated like a king

    Law 35: Master the art of timing

    Law 36: Disdain things you cannot have: Ignoring them is the best revenge

    Amazing spectacleLaw 37: Create compelling spectacles

    Law 38: Think as you like but behave like others

    Law 39: Stir up waters to catch fish

    Law 40: Despise the free lunch

    Law 41: Avoid stepping into a great man’s shoes

    Law 42 Strike the shepherd and the sheep will scatter

    Law 43: Work on the hearts and minds of others

    Law 44: Disarm and infuriate with the mirror effect

    Law 45: Preach the need for change, but never reform too much at once

    Law 46: Never appear too perfect

    Law 47: Do not go past the mark you aimed for; in victory, learn when to stop

    Law 48: Assume formlessness

    Perfect advice for psychopaths

    The preface of the book gets right down to business:

    No one wants less power, everyone wants more … in the world today, however, it is dangerous to seem too power hungry, to be overt with your power moves. We have to seem fair and decent. So we need to be subtle—congenial yet cunning, democratic, yet devious.

    This game of constant duplicity most resembles the power dynamic that existed in the scheming world of the old aristocratic court(s).

    The author, Greene, then goes on to perfectly describe the psychopath’s ways, without naming him such “…those who make a show or display of innocence are the least innocent of all.” What else but a psychopath could “recognize…by the way they flaunt their moral qualities, their piety, their exquisite sense of justice … but (they) are merely throwing dust in our eyes distracting us from their power plays with their air of moral superiority….you will see they are often the ones most skillful at indirect manipulation, …and they greatly resent any publicizing of the tactics they use.”


    In directing his readers how to master the most important skills in acquiring power, Greene tells them that the most important foundation is to “master your emotions.” He states that an emotional response is the single greatest barrier to gaining power. In this particular thing, I totally agree with him, because if we are emotional about a situation, we lose sight of the ultimate goal, and as he says, “cannot prepare for and respond to it with any degree of control.”

    Greene goes on to say that anger is the most destructive of emotional responses, and “clouds your vision the most.” Again, I totally agree with Greene in this statement, but then he goes on to add what I would think is directed more toward the vengeful psychopath than to less pathological people, “If you are trying to destroy an enemy who has hurt you, far better to keep him off-guard by feigning friendliness than showing your anger.”

    The mask

    Psychopaths have been described by many writers as “wearing a mask” or even “the mask of sanity.” Greene seems to be very aware of this “masking” when he advises his readers that, “You cannot succeed at deception unless you take a somewhat distanced approach to yourself—unless you can be many different people, wearing the mask that the day and moment require.”

    Psychopaths tend to project blame for their behavior on to other people, to refuse to assume responsibility for any of the things they have done. They lie “when the truth would fit better.” Greene says, “Power requires the ability to play with appearances. To this end you must learn to wear many masks and keep a bag full of deceptive tricks.” He goes on to say, “Playing with appearances and mastering arts of deception are among the aesthetic pleasures of life. They are also the key components in the acquisition of power.”

    Green does not seem to view deception or the acquisition of power as anything immoral, and he actually says, “Power is essentially amoral…power is a game…and in games you do not judge your opponents by their intentions but by the effect of their actions.” He goes on to advise the reader to not be caught by assuming that someone has good intentions, or that their good intentions matter. Greene advises his readers that some sets of moral judgments are “really an excuse for the accumulation of power.” I can definitely agree with that last statement. Frequently, religion and moral judgments are used as justification for a power stance that has no other legitimacy, and does great harm to the victims.

    Chapter One

    For each of the 48 laws of power, Green has a short chapter that consists of the name of the law, the first being, “Never Outshine the Master.”  Then he has a section called “Judgment,” in which he explains more fully the named law of power. The first law is reasonably self-explanatory and makes sense, really, because if you show your boss you are superior to him/her, then he/she will resent you.

    After giving several good examples of using this law, or failing to use this law, Greene finishes up Chapter One by saying, “You cannot worry about upsetting every person you come across, but you must be selectively cruel. If your superior is a falling star, there is nothing to fear in outshining him. Do not be merciful—your master had no such scruples in his own cold-blooded climb to the top. Gauge his strength. If he is weak, discreetly hasten his downfall: Outdo, outcharm, outsmart him at key moments.”

    While this book seems aimed at the “amoral-wannabe-politician on the way up,” rather than the psychopathic “wannabe-gang-banger thug” on the corner who is illiterate, I think that those of us who have had or even will have associations with psychopaths, or “Snakes in Suits” (to highjack the name of the book as a noun), should read this to learn how to discern when we are being played by the power-seeker. If we can recognize the masks for their deceptive cover, we can avoid the consequences of being played, or possibly turn the play back on to the player.

    Disturbing, but necessary, reading

    Frankly, this book made me uncomfortable while I was reading it, I think possibly by showing me “red flags” of power plays that I had experienced in the past, but had not quite recognized at the time I was being played. However, I do think the knowledge I gained by reading this book is well worth the slight discomfort. It isn’t a book that you can “zip through” quickly, but one that must, like the textbook that it is, read and ponder, and even re-read, and ponder again.

    The most personally disturbing part of the book was one in which he was discussing the siege of Troy, and he said, “Image: The Trojan Horse. Your guile is hidden inside a magnificent gift that proves irresistible to your opponent. The walls open. Once inside, wreak havoc.”

    We must learn to protect ourselves from those power-players who have no conscience, the power players who will use calculated acts of kindness or proffered gifts to earn our trust. Selective kindness can be the biggest part of the arsenal of deception. “Aimed for the heart, it corrodes the will to fight back.”

    The 48 Laws of Power is available on Amazon.com.

    Source:  BOOK REVIEW: The 48 Laws of Power, by Ox Drover, December 2010

    Photos courtesy Ged Carroll, Kris Krug, Mary Doodles


    Psychopath Test Politicians


  • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 09:36 on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , aggressive, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   

    Corporate Psychopathy: Web Conversation with Dr. Paul Babiak 

    Snakes in Suits

    by David Kosson

    The recent economic slowdown and transitions that companies are going through are creating a favorable environment for corporate psychopaths. This was just one of the issues raised by Dr. Paul Babiak at the Aftermath Foundation’s Web Conversation on May 19, 2015.

    In his talk, Dr. Babiak, a leading industrial and organizational psychologist and co-author of Snakes in Suits – When Psychopaths Go to Work,’ provided an overview of the modern-day corporate psychopath. They look and dress the same way as most business people, are charming, persuasive, charismatic, often fun to be around and, at first glance, seem to demonstrate strong leadership skills.

    In reality, however, they are unable to build teams, have no respect for individuals, lack integrity and wisdom, and are only interested in their own success – not the company’s. The long-term damage to companies from psychopathic employees includes low morale, ill-informed decision-making, increased risk and reduced productivity.

    Dr. Babiak warned that the frenzied nature of modern business spurred on by the recent economic crisis, with the constant downsizing and reorganizations, provides a fertile environment for psychopaths who thrive on chaos. On some occasions, psychopaths can enter companies as corporate saviors but, before long, will start to inflict considerable damage.

    The Main Characteristics of Psychopaths

    During the conversation, Dr. Babiak outlined some of the main characteristics and beliefs of psychopaths including their ability to be charming, likeable, and self-confident but at the same time insincere, untrustworthy and insensitive to the feelings of others. They also have a belief in their superiority over other people and the law, a sense of entitlement, and a belief that all blame lies with other people.

    In research conducted by Drs. Babiak, Neumann and Hare of 203 executives from seven international companies, 3.9% were found to have high levels of psychopathic traits. The prevalence of psychopathy in the general population is only 1%. Unfortunately, according to Babiak, one of the biggest challenges in identifying corporate psychopaths is that in day-to-day activities they often bear the hallmarks of good leaders through their charm, charisma, and larger-than-life personalities. Based on over 20 years working with corporate psychopaths and their victims, he has developed a framework to explain their path through an organization, a process of manipulation that covers a number of stages:

    • Organizational Entry. Psychopaths are very adept at the entry and interview stage. They are confident, charming, have no qualms lying on their resumes or during face-to-face interviews, and say whatever it takes to get the job.
    • Assessment. The assessment stage is the honeymoon period where the psychopath will establish an influence network normally based on one-on-one interaction with co-workers – what is described as the ‘Psychopathic Bond’. The Psychopathic Bond is based on lies and manipulation and the ability of the psychopaths to analyze the victim’s hot spots and weaknesses. At this stage, the psychopath will identify Pawns (potential victims), Patrons (bosses and those with power) and the organizational Police (HR and accounting departments).
    • Manipulation. During the manipulation stage is when they start to create conflict among their co-workers – the pawns – often through a campaign of disinformation. When in conflict, people don’t talk to each other – a perfect environment for the psychopath. At the same time, the psychopath will continue to groom the patron, often their direct boss, as a means of protection and defense.
    • Abandonment & Confrontation. At this stage, pawns are abandoned when they are no longer considered useful. Those that question or challenge this change in the relationship are “neutralized.”
    • Ascension. And finally, there is the betrayal of the patron and the promotion into the patron’s job.

              During the question and answer part of the conversation, participants posed questions about various topics, including whether psychopathic manipulation is evident in academia and what one might do if they realize they are a pawn at the mercy of a corporate psychopath.

    Do you want to support the victims of psychopathic individuals?
    Do you want to contribute to reducing the negative impact of psychopathy on individuals and society?
    To learn more about becoming a member of the Aftermath: Surviving Psychopathy Foundation, click here

    About Dr. Babiak

    Paul Babiak is an Industrial and Organizational Psychologist who coaches and consults with executives and organizations on issues related to corporate psychopathy. His research focuses on corporate psychopaths, their traits and characteristics, manipulation techniques, and the impact they can have on organizational performance and employee job satisfaction. He is the author of Snakes In Suits: When Psychopaths Go To Work, with Dr. Robert D. Hare, as well as several scientific papers and book chapters. His work has been featured in the New York Times,Washington Post, Harvard Business Review, and Fast Company, and he has appeared on The Today Show, Countdown with Keith Olbermann-MSNBC and DatelineNBC as well as several documentaries on psychopathy.

    SOURCE: Aftermath: Surviving Psychopathy Foundation Corporate Psychopathy: Web Conversation with Dr. Paul Babiak June 2015

    Psychopath TEST Politicians


    • James 13:07 on August 27, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Another interesting article.

      “A belief that all blame lies with other people.” is not entirely accurate. Certainly, other people are often at fault too or more so, but when we’re playing the blame game, scapegoating, we are more than aware of what we’re doing. Narcissists might genuine believe they are incapable of fault, psychopaths are more grounded in the imperfect reality, but will blame anyone to get what we want.

      Liked by 1 person

  • GeneticPsychosMom (Tina) 10:33 on August 11, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: aggressive, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   


    Nestle's CEO actually said

    Situational Preferences

    Psychopaths function better in formal hierarchies where rules are fairly well entrenched. New and emerging companies have less systematization and structure than their bigger brethren do. Psychopaths often acquire their power by breaking rules, but only if almost everyone else abides by them. Rules enforce controls, controls over people’s behaviors. This is why psychopaths are extremely hypocritical when it comes to rules: they will break them if it benefits them but will strictly enforce and punish others who do the same.

    Incrementally growing or declining companies are fertile grounds for psychopaths as long as they sense an advantage. Psychopaths have no problems getting rich at the expense of the enterprise. High growth creates dynamic opportunities and change. This is risky for psychopaths because opportunities abound. A dog-eat-dog mentality to advance is less prevalent compared to situations where one can only get ahead through the termination of another. Psychopaths shine in dog-eat-dog situations.

    Of course, if psychopaths can govern change in a high-growth situation or the growth is assured that is definitely an advantage. That is why they will definitely seek to run high-growth departments within slower-growing or declining companies; this only enhances their image and power. Furthermore, since change is dynamic, they will likely need to make new rules at which psychopaths are often good. Rules are good, making rules is even better.

    Simply, psychopaths need people. They use rules to control them and acquire power by working outside them. They look for rich, mature hosts or very young ones assured of growth, needing organization, standardization, discipline and processes.

    Preferred Cultures

    What’s difficult to remember is that psychopaths can be personable, especially smart ones. They can have rather high emotional intelligence since it’s about understanding, not feeling. They can also be very charismatic since it’s learnable, as is emotional intelligence. However, since relating emotionally to people is a conscious, mental exercise for them, it’s more taxing for them than for a sincere, sensitive person. Therefore, they must find other means of influencing such as through rules and uniformity.

    Thus, cultures and people who prefer respecting authority to questioning authority and who prefer processes and rules to education and relationship building are better for psychopaths. They also prefer positive, agreeable, and compliant people, proverbial “yes men” who are more focused on not rocking the boat than doing what’s best. Psychopaths prefer self-interested people who are highly motivated by competition and incentives. This allows them to isolate people and prevent strong relational bonds from building, thus “dividing and conquering.”

    Since uniformity is less taxing than diversity not only form a relational perspective but also a managing and leading one, psychopaths will thrive in homogeneous business cultures, especially from a personality perspective. Thus, rules, processes, negativity and dissent become psychopaths’ tools to eradicate personalities that do not conform to the one that they want.

    In short, psychopaths prefer control-oriented, bottom-line focused cultures. This permits a business-accepted “ends justify means” approach for exploiting and disposing of those who threaten them or no longer serve their purposes.

    Relational Preferences

    Psychopaths prefer relationships in which we will tend to:

    In other words, style easily influences humans, so psychopaths will leverage these influences.

    Since we tend to view those who break rules as powerful, psychopaths will often overtly break them to establish their power with us. They will also establish rules to control relationships but hypocritically breaking, again establishing their power.

    Humans naturally fear uncertainty. Confidence reassures us. Psychopaths know they can use confidence to seduce us. In relationships, they will seek and enforce unquestioning respect for authority and rules to protect their confident persona.

    Since we have a natural propensity to overweight talent’s impact on results, psychopaths will smartly position themselves to seize favorable opportunities and build their resumes. They will unabashedly take credit from others’ and embellish their contributions.

    Psychopaths aren’t natural relaters so often make up for it by learning charisma and improving their emotional intelligence. Still, they must consciously think through every relational event. The same clumsiness results though as when thinking through every step of swinging a golf club or playing an instrument while doing it. Therefore, they will prefer one-on-one and large group interactions. The latter, even diverse ones, aren’t conducive to deeper discussions taxing to psychopaths, but diverse, intimate groups of three to eight individuals are. That’s why, as a whole, psychopaths will prefer homogenous cultures so they can avoid consciously toggling among many different personalities,

    Consequently, hypocrisy, confidence, uniformity, agreeableness, obedience and charisma are key relational preferences psychopaths leverage to advance themselves interpersonally. Knowing the situations, trends, people and relationships that benefit psychopaths will help us recognize their shallowness and insincerity when they attempt to influence us.

    Excerpts from Psychopaths in Workplace series, by Mike Lehr, March 2013

    Psychopath TEST Politicians


    • WrenchMonkey47 17:14 on August 13, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I’ve been focusing on ponerology, ponerogenesis and pathocracy for several years now and this is the first time I’ve come across a reference to “emotional intelligence“. Makes perfect sense. Thank you for broadening my perspective.

      Liked by 1 person

      • @GeneticPsycho (Tina) 22:14 on August 13, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Yes, this guy knows his stuff much better than most therapists I’ve come across. Lehr’s material focuses on noncriminal psychopaths, and should be referenced to as much as Hare is for the criminal element!.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Mike 11:58 on September 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply

          Thank you both for your comments and compliments. You are definitely seeing that I am shedding light on the non-criminal side of psychopaths. The emotional intelligence component is very important. Too many times we fall in love with a concept without diving deeper into its darker sides. You can visit http://www.mikelehrblog.com and read the whole series.

          Again, thank you for your support and endorsements.

          Liked by 1 person

          • @GeneticPsycho (Tina) 14:41 on September 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply

            Hi Mike,
            Thank you for sharing your insight with the world. You are right on the money and express such precise detail. Everything that you write is so clear and true, and is not tinged with your personal emotional perspective like so many other references on the internet. It took me many years to see the psychopaths in my life, and I did it using the familiar Hare checklist. Your approach makes more sense in my case and I wish I had come across your website at the beginning of my journey. How did you acquire such in-depth knowledge? Personal experience?


    • WrenchMonkey47 15:27 on August 14, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Noncriminal? Such as the Koch brothers or any of a number of CEOs, bankers and financiers? Hah! Noncriminal! It is to laugh.

      I suppose they may technically be “noncriminal” but they are, by far, the most dangerous and deadly. Their actions and decisions create poverty, suffering and death for millions and will ultimately lead to the collapse of our biosphere and the death of billions.


      Inherited and acquired psychological disorders and ignorance of their existence and nature are the primal causes of evil. The magic number of 6% seems to represent the number of humans who either carry the genes responsible for biological evil or who acquire such disorders in the course of their lifetime. This small percent is responsible for the vast majority of human misery and crime, and for infecting others with their flawed view of the world. (source)

      Liked by 1 person

    • WrenchMonkey47 00:47 on August 15, 2015 Permalink | Reply


      Before we became “civilised“, ponerogenesis was kept in check with relative ease.


      blockquote>“A story reported by Dr. Jane M. Murphy, now director of Harvard’s Psychiatric Epidemiology Unit, serves as an example of the vigilant stance that one millennia-old indigenous culture – a group of Inuit in Northwest Alaska – takes regarding psychopathic types within their midst. (emphasis added) So aware is this group regarding the existence of these individuals that their language includes a term for them – kunlangeta – which is used to refer to a person whose “mind knows what to do but does not do it,” resulting in such acts as lying, cheating, stealing and taking advantage of the tribe without making sufficient contribution. And how seriously do the group’s members take the need to respond to the threat such individuals pose to the group’s sustainability? When asked what the group would typically do with a kunlangeta, Murphy was told ‘Somebody would have pushed him off the ice when nobody else was looking’.” (source)

      It was only with the growth of civilisation, its large populations and attendant patriarchal hierarchies, that the wetiko, the kunlangeta, the essential psychopath, found the opportunity to achieve personal power great enough to overwhelm the social power that had kept ponerogenesis in check for so many millennia.

      The collapse of the dominator culture of technological civilisation is a natural response to the counter-evolutionary course Homo sapiens has taken. It is a mechanism that may set humanity back on the evolutionary path to actual civilisation; if it doesn’t wipe out the entire species first.

      Liked by 1 person

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