Michael Zeleny (larvatus) wrote,
Michael Zeleny

how to win the game of life

    Life is struggle. The only way to win is by taking every advantage over your opponent. Pity the fool postulating principles and purposes unrelated to overcoming, prevailing, and humiliating at all costs. Herewith the rules for zero sum self-aggrandizement unfazed by the chimaera of Truth.
  1. Be personal. Seek to color every exchange by flattering interest, appetite, and sentiment. Appeal to the instant concerns of your audience or redirect them elsewhere, according as they advance or oppose your own. Change sides with the alignment of interest, appetite, and sentiment. Take umbrage at imaginary slights to elicit sympathy from accomplished victims.
  2. Be careful. Allow yourself to be understood only in a way and to the extent that suits you. Insist on understanding others only in a way and to the extent that suits yourself. Leave no traces of past opinions, stratagems, or alliances, lest they be turned against you. Discover your interlocutors' past opinions, stratagems, and alliances, to reveal them to your advantage. Cultivate ambiguity in yourself and excoriate it in others. Admit only in equivocation. Commit only to circumlocution.
  3. Be proud. Collect official credentials. Invoke them before impressionable audiences. Expose and exploit the limitations of your neighbors. Feed your ego with the evidence of their inferiority, be it physical, mental, social, or economic. Seek advantage at all times. Trade it for goods or status.
  4. Be determined. Never retract a word in lieu of accusing your critics of misunderstanding your message for want of wit, erudition, or propriety. Enlist useful idiots to second your gainsaying of the obvious. When all else fails, change the subject and volunteer a fresh paradox.
  5. Be mysterious. Never get pinned down in factual minutiae. Support doctrine with fey anecdote. Refute theory by irrelevant observation. Impugn experience with fictitious principles. Acquire a learned vocabulary. Cultivate an authoritative diction. Never condescend to certify your expertise. When bluster fails, drop hints and deploy insinuendo.
  6. Be satisfied. Nothing else matters.

John Flaxman, Lucifer
Tags: bullshit, usenet, vanity

  • i can’t even

    In 1299, King Edward I of England ordered the sheriffs of Salop and Stafford to prohibit any one “from tourneying, tilting . . . or jousting, or…

  • the joys of approximation

    In stark contrast to rightwing claims, 93% of demonstrations have involved no serious harm to people or property. — Lois Beckett, “ Nearly all Black…

  • taylor v. twitter: a challenge to internet censorship

    My fellow asshole-American, Jared Taylor, is arguing in the Superior Court of San Francisco, that Twitter, which describes itself as “the live…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded