Tit for Tat: Its Role in Strategy

When I took negotiating back at Harvard Business School, I remember my professor going through the mathematical proof from game theory that demonstrates that the best generic strategy is simply "tit-for-tat." You treat others as they treat you. Initially, you treat others as you would have them treat you because you assume they also understand good strategy and will return the favor. However, if in return, they try to take advantage of you, you must respond in kind. However, as this approach realizes, many people do not know what is good for them.

They Won't Be Here Soon...

What is your competitive philosophy? Sun Tzu taught that your core philosophy is the key to life and death, success or failure. We can talk about the philosophy of the West or the philosophy of terrorism, but the real philosophy that matters is your personal philosophy. The further our personal philosophies drift from the hard realities of the world, the more precarious our lives become, not matter how well protected we think we are by our society and civilization.

Take Back America!

I have been doing a little strategic work for a local conservative organization called Take Back America. In this work, I tried to come up with a comprehensive statement of principles opposed by conservatives. This statement brings together a lot of my work here. The result was the following: We live in a world where the MSM and too many of our politicians are telling us: - that the more government can save the world while our freedom is destroying it - that we need government as our nanny but not to defend us from evil; - that we need more sex and less religion in the public square,

The New Democrat Slogan: Denounce Your Friends

China's Mao turned the concept of denouncing others as a new basis for organizing society. Though the idea had been road tested by Hitler and Stalin, it really came into its own during Mao's Cultural Revolution. The idea was to force people into pressuring their neighbors and citizens into towing the Party line. Those who were not sufficiently energetic in publicly denouncing others made themselves targets for being publically denounced themselves. This was a great strategy for leveraging the dictatorial power of a central government through all parts of society.

The Elites and Global Warming

"Global warming" (the political movement, not the physical fact) is quickly becoming the best possible illustration of everything that is going wrong with modern society. In a single topic, it encapsulates:
  • 1. The "respect gap" between doers and talkers, best illustrated by the fact that the global warming talker-in-chief, Al Gore, is lionized in the media and Hollywood for his talk while in his personal life, he produces more carbon gas the a fire in a coal mine.

Observations from Asia

In collecting of information, Sun Tzu tells us that we must seek outside sources because every one of us is limited by our normal perspective, which is defined by our existing position. Having just returned from Asia where the perspective on events is very different, this warning seems very appropriate. I wish I had time right now to do a longer post on the Asian perspective on democracy and especially the War on Terror, but right now, I only have time to make a few notes.

Science, the State, and Your Future

Sun Tzu's strategy is a science, designed to systematically analyze the human psychology of competition. While those in the media constantly claim that science in under attack by religion, the truth is that science can never threatened by religion, that is, by what people believe. As a method, it is available to anyone who chooses to use it, regardless of belief. Instead the sciences are constantly threatened by the state, which has always sought to control people through the control of information.

Getting It Wrong and Paying the Price

It my last post, I discussed the difference between how talkers, primarily the media, and doers see the world situation today. Now comes this story that make it clear that society's talkers are paying a heavy price for getting it wrong. Talkers are part of the competitive world whether they like it or not (and they really don't, which is why they feel laws must be changed).


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