Machiavellian Maxims (Part 4)

“The promise given was a necessity of the past: the word broken is a necessity of the present.” – Niccolo Machiavelli

1.) Introduction
2.) The Maxims
3.) Relevant Reading / In Closing

1.) Introduction:

Welcome to part 4 in my series of Machiavellian maxims, as with the previous articles, contained within is a pithy collection of Machiavellian wisdom. If you’ve not read anything in this series before, you can find part 1 here, part 2 here and part 3 here.

META MESSAGE: I made a radio appearance on the Sharpe Reality show yesterday, you can check out the show here.

2.) The Maxims:

1. – Social causes are disguises for the predators and lifestyles for the sheep.

2. – Her first concern is her appearance, her second concern her cunning, both serve the same ends.

3. – Your response should be proportional to the perception of the threat, there’s no need to launch nukes when you can get the job done with a well-aimed bullet.

4. – A leader must be mindful in exercising benevolence, for too much benevolence is perceived as weakness and fosters resentment.

5. – One is wise to openly support freedom of speech, but they should only do so for as long as such speech is not deleterious to their reputation; it is almost always an act of self folly to not censor those biting deep into their repute.

6. – Be mindful of the Streisand effect, if your detractors are persistent and resourceful, censoring will make things worse rather than better.

7. – People are bolder when they’re paying and meeker when they’re paid. Caveat: the latter doesn’t apply to blackmail.

8. – People want to forget, not be reminded. Very powerful. Never forget this.

9. – Tu quoque is the sophist’s most preferred logical fallacy, for it can justify their poor behaviour whilst simultaneously redirecting attention to the misdeeds of others.

10. – Weak and strong in matters of strategy are not effects of appearance in so much as they are a question of the tactical viability and efficacy of a plan.

11. – In financial exchange, the man paid covets payment in advance whilst the man paying seeks to pay after the fact.

12. – When people retroactively change their minds, they will blame you for their change of heart irrespective of whether it’s truly your fault.

13. – “Coincidence” is the term people use to describe a chess move they don’t understand.


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