Seduction Scenario #1 Follow-Up

This is in no way intended as a grading of your responses, which were very interesting and revealing. There is obviously no single correct seduction in this matter. It is chemistry–what the individual seducer brings to the mix, with his strengths and weaknesses, and the particular victim at hand. But some of your comments and ideas stand out as effective to me, while a few seem based on some misconceptions. With that in mind, I would like to discuss a few of the main themes you all brought up: The Ethics of this seduction. Obviously I fall into the camp

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War Games–Taking on Karl Rove

We are gearing up for an election only a few months away, and so I think it appropriate to look at someone who looms large in the picture: Karl Rove. Let us say a few things about him for which there is certainly no argument: He is intensely competitive. He cannot stand losing. When he is involved in an election in which his man or woman looks like they are in trouble, Mr. Rove tends to go dirty. Sometimes real dirty. This is not legend but fact. I draw your attention to this excellent article in The Atlantic Monthly. Mr.

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Western Strategy is Bankrupt

In chapter 33 of The 33 Strategies of War I expounded what I think is a somewhat novel idea and theory about terrorism. The great debate, particularly after 9/11, was whether we were entering a new phase of terrorism, or whether 9/11 was just another example of what is known as conventional terrorism. The general consensus was that 9/11 was a more devastating attack than others in the past, but did not represent a qualitative leap to something new and different. Such a leap would have to include some kind of super weapon, nuclear or biological, which would so up

B.S. Barometers

I plan to get to many of your excellent topic suggestions over the course of the following months. I will begin with Tribal Witch Doctor’s excellent query, which I quote below: Could you please discuss your views on finding reliable sources of information? Particularly, could you discuss your views on how the media skews or informs popular opinion and how to circumvent the political propaganda and bias inherent in most of the popular press. One of the things that impresses me about your work is your ability to present the salient issues as seen from different sides. For example, you

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The Power Breviary

Keep things simple and direct: One of my greatest pet peeves is airy abstractions and unnecessary complications; I like to keep things brutally simple. Here’s how I see it: People want power in their lives. They hate the feeling of not having control. They do whatever they can to get power–consciously or not. Some of this involves manipulations. These manipulations can be analyzed and charted; they are not limitless in number. We are creatures that are often motivated by ego, insecurity, vanity. Mistakes in the power game come from not taking these elemental truths into consideration. In writing the books,

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Seduction Scenario #1

There’s this girl who lives in your area, and whom you have noticed over the past several months. You have never spoken with her, just seen her in passing on a few occasions. She is very beautiful, in a way that gets to you and makes you think of her days later. She tends to downplay her beauty by the way she dresses, but most men would see her as very fetching. You have seen her a couple of times at the supermarket, walking her dog, etc. She has no idea of your existence. One time you saw her with

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48 Laws on ABC

ABC did a piece on 48 Laws of Power on their webcast. You can view it here. Discuss the piece on the thread here.

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The Iraq War and the Military Gamble: Anatomy of a Potential Disaster

Erwin Rommel was an exceptionally brilliant general who had one of the most remarkable runs in warfare with his desert campaigns in North Africa during World War II. Rommel was constantly dealing with problems: his army was small and under-equipped. They did not have as much experience as the English in desert campaigns. And so Rommel had recourse to strategy, to level the playing field. One strategy he depended on was to attack with speed and boldness, controlling the dynamic in the process (see chapters 14 and 15 in The 33 Strategies of War). Simply put, he took risks. Some

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Tactical Hell or Strategic Heaven?

In my book The 33 Strategies of War, I make the point that most of us exist in a realm that I call tactical hell. This hell consists of all of the people around us who are vying for power or some kind of control, and whose actions intersect our lives in a thousand different directions. We are constantly having to react to what this person does or says, getting emotional in the process. Once you sink into this hell, it is very difficult to raise your mind above it. You are dealing with one battle after another, and none

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