If you are close to power, then you need to understand that your standing with those around you is always fluid. You need to be comfortable with that, and understand that as much as it may seem to be the case that those close to you are your friends, they are not. They are there because they like power. If you happen to be in their way, then watch your back; even as you carefully maintain your smiling, relaxed demeanor. This situation is not cultural; it is biological, and it is hard wired. This is how it always has been, and how it always will be.
In order to accomplish something great; something truly worthwhile, your work must overcome you. You must lose yourself to it. It must become something which is more important — even than your own physical and psychological wellbeing.
Do not wonder that great artists so frequently overdose on drugs.
Do not wonder that missionaries go to areas of the world wrought with disease, violence and tyranny.
Do not wonder that you hear stories of soldiers losing limbs, only to fight to return to battle with their comrades.
Their work overcomes them. That is why they are great.
Money and power are inherently related. This is common knowledge. What is not common knowledge is the reason why this is the case. And the reason this is the case is quite simple.
Power is the ability to exert influence over how others choose to expend their time, effort, and resources.
Money is an accepted, demarcated representation of time, effort, and resources.
Ergo, money and power relate to one another on a directly proportional basis. An amount of money is a strong indicator of power, as well as being a source for the same.
An indicator: because, under normal circumstances, money is acquired by being able to constructively guide (or influence) human action.
A source: because it amounts to a direct means of accomplishing the same.
An insidious implication: when money stolen (or redistributed, which amounts to the same thing; subject of a future post), what is actually occuring is not merely theft, but also enslavement; because you are taking by force that which legitimately represents the time, effort, and resources of other people.
Contrast this to trade, which amounts to an agreement of equivalency; i.e., an agreement that a certain amount of time and effort on the part of one party, is equivalent in value to a different amount of time and effort on the part of another.
Tangential conclusion: people say that Capitalism is injust, and distributes income inequitably.
The former is not true; because the system in its strict sense, allows only for such economic relationships which each party (legitimately) in question is willing to voluntarilly agree to.
The latter is a partial truth: not everyone is «equal» in a capitalist system. This is, for the most part, a function of the fact that not all people are equal. Some are smarter. Some are harder working. Some have unique talents. Some people seem to think this is unfair. Such an attitude is not merely petty and resentful, but also counterconstructive. These people should be thankful that these people are so much smarter, hard-working, talented, and wealthy than them, because this enables them to create a world that is much more pleasant to live in for everyone; they are able to do this because they understand how to allocate themselves and their resources. If the socialists had their way, these people would be severely handicapped and we’d all suffer for it.
Caveat to the tangential conclusion: we do not live in a Capitalist society. We live in a Fascist society. If you do not understand the distinction (and many do not), then don’t worry; I will clarify it in a future post.
If you put yourself in the position being humble and genuinely willing to learn, then the group will subconsciously, yet inexorably push you to stay in such a situation. Furthermore, they will identify you as the group scapegoat. All shortcomings of the group will be ATTRIBUTED TO YOU. If you don’t want to get shit, then don’t take shit.
And God help you if you happen to be the smart one of the group. They won’t understand your ideas, so they’ll break them into shards and shank you with the pieces. Before you share ideas with any group, you should first find out what peoples’ weaknesses and insecurities are — so that when they do lash out at you for being smarter than them, you have all the ammunition you need to destroy their fragile little self-esteems.
They will not realize how deeply hypocritical and insecure they are being. They will admonish you to be more humble and more willing to accept advice — even as they continue to pile on the shit. Therefore, if anyone tries that kind of bullshit on you, you throw it back in their face IMMEDIATELY. Don’t be afraid to be brutal in your verbal abuse — regardless of how «gently» they seem to be poking at you. If they are poking at you gently, it is because they are testing you. Fuck. Them. Up.