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Narcissists are winners . . .

Discussion in 'Speaker's Corner' started by stockhausen, Oct 29, 2019.

  1. stockhausen

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jul 30, 2006

    Posts: 9,997

    As I was driving South to a meeting this morning I half heard an item on the BBC Radio 4 World Service. It suggested that:
    My immediate response was "Are they referring to Trump or to Boris Johnson?"

    As it happens, the article doesn't refer to either. However, reading the article one can't help but feel that it characterises many "successful" people. Other quotes that I would extract from the article are :
    "Narcissism is part of the ‘Dark Tetrad’ of personality that also includes Machiavellianism, Psychopathy and Sadism. There are two main dimensions to narcissism – grandiose and vulnerable. Vulnerable narcissists are likely to be more defensive and view the behaviour of others as hostile whereas grandiose narcissists usually have an over inflated sense of importance and a preoccupation with status and power."​
    and
    "Individuals high on the spectrum of dark traits, such as narcissism, engage in risky behaviour, hold an unrealistic superior view of themselves, are overconfident, show little empathy for others, and have little shame or guilt."​

    I believe many people who succeed in the world of politics, in business and probably in the sport and entertainment worlds could be said to exhibit these characteristics. Aside from the currently obvious Trump and Johnson, I think immediately of Thatcher, Blair, Churchill, Hitler, Stalin, Saddam Hussein, Muammar al-Gaddafi, Mike Ashley, Philip Green, Steve Jobs, Michael Schumacher, Ayrton Senna and Harvey Weinstein - all of them supremely arrogant, self-confident, utterly shameless and invariably suspicious of others.

    I have no doubt that there are others and there are inevitably exceptions that prove the rule but I can't immediately think of any examples of the latter - Mandela, Gandhi perhaps?

    Is Narcissism an almost essential pre-requisite for success in life and are the meek destined to inherit absolutely nothing?
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2019
  2. ANDREW GREEN

    Hitman

    Joined: Sep 17, 2018

    Posts: 622

    Trump and Hitler are obviously sociopathic narcissists. I don't see how Borris is a narcissist and I'd like to hear the case for the others. Some of those people have carried unethical acts but many people would carry out unethical acts given the power and wealth to have the opportunity to do so.

    My ex was a narcissist and I know from experience they have many personal failing inherent with their physcological condition. Their self esteem is reliant on others opinion of them more than anyone else. They see people as tools, perfect or imperfect and the perfect will always seemingly seem imperfect. Because they constantly lie to improve their sense of self they struggle with logic and this can see them struggle with simply being organised in my experience. They also go into almighty rages where they abuse and destroy those around them when they feel slighted.

    I also had an ex-friend who was a narcissist, would make up all kinds of delusional stories to appear superior, which always turned out to be bollox.
     
  3. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 22,071

    Just ask if they're a narcissist and they'll tell you most of the time, so you have a defence against them, because you can then abandon them as they're never worth the aggravation. Never ever support them, as the moment they see a position of advantage, they'll stab you in the back.

    They require others to be successful, so just don't be the other, subservience isn't humbling.
     
  4. LOAM

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 20, 2004

    Posts: 11,378

    Location: Nottingham

    You've just described Johnson.

    Guy I worked with was a sociopathic narcissist, so was his wife. Was pretty hilarious though because the whole office clocked him early doors and let him destroy himself, he lasted under 12 months before getting sacked for trying to force out one of the directors. It was a running joke that we all had steel linings to the back of our chairs.

    He truly was bizarre though, he was a really nice guy and was popular and great fun to be around but we all knew if the opportunity arose to better himself, even if it meant destroying one of his colleagues, he would take it in a heartbeat.

    He's subsequently drifted from, admittedly one high profile position to the next his whole career.
     
  5. BowdonUK

    Mobster

    Joined: Jan 17, 2016

    Posts: 2,852

    There is a book I read, and have somewhere, about this very subject. If I can remember the title I'll add it in. But yea, it makes the same point.
     
  6. Trusty

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 12, 2006

    Posts: 10,649

    Location: On A Rocket

    It's a scale though, it's not black and white, take the other side of the coin, someone who has no confidence in themselves, no sense of status, what are they doing with their life?

    Also, you list Thatcher, Blair, Churchill, Hitler, Stalin, Saddam Hussein, Muammar al-Gaddafi, Mike Ashley, Philip Green, Steve Jobs, Michael Schumacher, Ayrton Senna and Harvey Weinstein as examples, but these are just high profile examples, there will be the same amount of people at the top that rank lower in the scales, and there will be people who don't succeed who rank higher in the scales.

    So to answer your question, no, narcissism is nowhere near a pre-requisite for success in life.

    But it does help to have confidence in yourself to be successful
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  7. Vargas

    Mobster

    Joined: Apr 15, 2012

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    Location: Aonach Dubh

    Any other narcs on here?
     
  8. Mason-

    Soldato

    Joined: Jun 18, 2010

    Posts: 5,318

    Location: Essex

    Surely a pre requisite to an important position is the belief that you can fill that position. I.e. you think yourself important.

    I think the majority of people would agree that they couldn't be prime minister, or president or CEO of a bank. But the majority of people aren't narcissists. If you're a narcissist and talented, you'll probably make it to these positions. If you're a narcissist and not particularly talented, you'll end up on instagram.
     
  9. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 22,071

    hahahha David Cameron was not talented, nor was May.

    I’d hazard Tony Blair at least tried to do something, before wasting it all. John Major wasn’t useless, Thatcher was impressive. Recent times are just sad mediocrity.
     
  10. Mason-

    Soldato

    Joined: Jun 18, 2010

    Posts: 5,318

    Location: Essex

    Oh please, no one get's into those positions without being talented. If you don't think that DC and TM weren't talented as politicians you're truly beyond reason. Just because you disagree with them doesn't mean they weren't talented. I think Jeremy Corbyn's politics are horrendous but I would never say he isn't a talented politician. I think Diane Abbott's politics as well are terrible and that she cocks up loads of times in public, but she is a talented politician.
     
  11. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 22,071

    Nah, I’m sure they made great spokespersons, but they were awful leaders. Being a talented politician is not an accolade, being a talented legislator would be, but it seems most just want to push ideology and special interests than actually fix this country’s ill.

    In fptp, they are nothing more than a facade of what they should be.
     
  12. Mason-

    Soldato

    Joined: Jun 18, 2010

    Posts: 5,318

    Location: Essex

    Getting into those positions in the first place requires talent. DC won leadership of his party and 2 elections (1 and a half if you want to be pedantic). TM won leadership of her party and half won an election. You don't get voted as leader of arguably the biggest political party in the UK's history without being a talented politician, it's nonsensical to argue otherwise.

    FPTP fosters a 2-party system. They still beat the, albeit mediocre, opposition.

    Being a talented politician is an accolade, being popular is the key to politics in democracies, and popular they were. I completely disagree, most of the untalented politicians want to push ideology, see John McDonnell and Corbyn, the ones that push pragmatism, i.e. DC are successful.
     
  13. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 22,071

    You really believe DC was pragmatic? We literally went through austerity for no reason...

    I’m sure he was the best they had, don’t get me wrong, but he filled me with boredom. As did Ed Miliband before you get grouchy.
     
  14. Mason-

    Soldato

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    Location: Essex

    Cutting spending during a time of economic downturn is the epitome of pragmatism.
     
  15. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 22,071

    No it wasn’t, we needed investment, we still ******* need it, but now it’s clouded in a fog of hysteria, that were likely not going to get it.

    The increasing speed of communication has clearly wrecked this style of governance, everything is a waste of money, everything is socialism... All the right are nazis, all the left are commies...
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2019
  16. Mason-

    Soldato

    Joined: Jun 18, 2010

    Posts: 5,318

    Location: Essex

    It was tried between 2008-2010 and it resulted in public debt going from 40% of GDP to 80%. It's a dumb idea. Pumping money into everything isn't going to make things tickety boo again. Either way this is getting far outside the scope of the original discussion so let's just leave it there.
     
  17. StriderX

    Capodecina

    Joined: Mar 18, 2008

    Posts: 22,071

    What? No it wasn’t.

    That was literally to save the banks, we still bloody own RBS to a significant degree.

    But yes, this isn’t the place.
     
  18. Safetytrousers

    Wise Guy

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  19. Nasher

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 22, 2006

    Posts: 14,148

    Neither really care what others think or say about them. That's the key :p

    But Trump isn't really all that successful. His dad made the money and he inherited it. Money makes money unless you **** it all away doing something mega stupid.
     
  20. CircleFaust

    Mobster

    Joined: Dec 1, 2003

    Posts: 3,345

    yes i think generally the narcissist will get all the wealth and success if that's the goal
    although if you are meek but have comes to terms with the fact you'll never be a CEO with a yacht then it may not be so bad