a reply to: LesterJust
There are two major factors which tend to play into whether a person attains power over others or not, over the course of their lives.
The first of these, is psychopathy. Those who could be considered to be of a psychopathic mentality, know the difference between right and wrong, but
simply do not care much which one they do. If they also happen to be in any way cunning, this can provide them a larger palette of potential responses
to input, than you or I might have. So, where you or I would see a challenge from a political rival and seek to deconstruct their argument, a
psychopath would stoop to dirty tricks, character assassination, or blackmail in order to produce the desired effect, that of their rival being
silenced. Some would go as far as to have a person killed, albeit in plausibly deniable fashion, in a manner which distanced the shot caller from the
This means that those who are morally defunct, are playing a different set of rules to everyone else. Where everyone else is trying to get ahead
within the rules of society, psychopaths use those rules to hold others back, while ignoring the rules that hold them back from their goals entirely.
This means they climb every ladder faster, because they do not mind cutting the ankles out from under others who are on it, rather than waiting for
someone else to get out of the way, to finish their ascent. They make all the progress they make in life and in their careers, by manipulation,
backstabbing, throat slitting, mercenary tactics, honourless, morally decrepit, and yet their meteoric rise is solidified by another of their traits.
They often APPEAR charismatic, bombastic, capable. They have the con down to a fine art, as part of their mastery of manipulation tactics. You see
this in the business world all the time, with a significant percentage of CEOs and other corporate high ups, being representative of the psychopathic
mindset. In fact a greater number of psychopaths can be found in that rarefied demography, than in most others. Its worth pointing out that
psychopaths are often not particularly good at their jobs. They do not accumulate success that way. They accumulate success by acquiring command over
capable subordinates, and passing their successes off as their own, which has the dual effect of making them look great to whomever it is important to
fool in a given moment, and also keeps the confidence level of those below them low, making those individuals seek the validation of the psychopath,
dependent on them in some respect, either through subtle manipulations creating a Stockholm Syndrome like effect, or by overt manipulations like the
aforementioned bribery, blackmail and other such machinations.
There is another element which goes a good way to explaining why the leaders are often corrupt, rather than decent, but this has more to do with the
mindset of good people.
Good people do not believe themselves fit to judge others. Good people do not see themselves as worthy to lead others. Good people do not desire
dominion over anything particularly as it happens. They want to have freedom and liberty in their lives, they want something to occupy themselves
with, enough to eat, clothes on their backs, roofs over heads, access to the necessities, but not really anything beyond a modest, regular life. They
are not obsessed with their own success, or at least, they measure it differently. They seek contentment, not opulence, and what measure of luxury
they WOULD like, they wish to EARN. Even the concept of earning is different for a decent person, than a psychopathic power seeker. For the
psychopath, earning is simply what one gains. Good people are aware that things are gained in the world, which have not been earned, because earning
requires dedication, hard work AND luck. It is HARD to do, takes TIME to do, is not something you can do while wearing a suit or waffling down a
telephone while wasted on Gin after an afternoon at the golf club that you CALLED a business meeting, but was actually a boozy romp in the bushes with
Good people do not want to control others, they do not want to have dominion over their actions, their thoughts, their choice of car, their gas
mileage, or their taxes. Good people do not desire power, they desire only their own freedom. Most good people could live entirely without governance,
because even in the absence of law, they would simply never think of stealing from, or hurting others. It would never occur to them to do seriously,
because they would always butt up against their conscience. The psychopaths who get ahead simply have no conscience, that is why they get ahead, why
they desire dominion, why they desire power, control, wealth in extremis...
We are lead by psychopaths and scum, because they are the only people who desire to do so. The only people decent enough and noble enough to be good
leaders, dedicated to the people not their pockets, dedicated to principle not pathological lies, dedicated to the sort of peace gained through good
living, rather than the sort of peace created by the onrush of death, have no desire to lead whatsoever.