Skip to comments.Machiavellianism and Prince Rafael Cruziavelli Mendacii of Florence
Posted on 05/01/2016 8:26:09 AM PDT by poconopundit
|Machiavellianism is "the employment of cunning and duplicity in statecraft or in general conduct". The word comes from the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer Niccolo Machiavelli, who wrote Il Principe (The Prince), among other works.
In modern psychology, Machiavellianism is one of the dark triad personalities, characterized by a duplicitous interpersonal style, a cynical disregard for morality and a focus on self-interest and personal gain.
Machiavellianism is also a term that some social and personality psychologists use to describe a person's tendency to be unemotional, and therefore able to detach him or herself from conventional morality and hence to deceive and manipulate others.
Poster's Note: The Machivellianism theory may help explain the personalities of two famous politicians:
Testing for Machiavellianism
In the 1960s, Richard Christie and Florence L. Geis developed a test for measuring a person's level of Machiavellianism. Their Mach IV test, a twenty-statement personality survey, became the standard self-assessment tool of Machiavellianism.
People scoring high on the scale (high Machs) tend to endorse statements such as:
However, they do not endorse statements like:
There is no excuse for lying to someone else; or
Most people who get ahead in the world lead clean, moral lives.
A 1992 review described Machiavellian motivation as related to cold selfishness and pure instrumentality, and those high on the trait were assumed to pursue their motives (e.g. sex, achievement, sociality) in duplicitous ways.
More recent research on the motivations of high Machs compared to low Machs found that they gave high priority to money, power, and competition and relatively low priority to community building, self-love, and family concerns. High Machs admitted to focusing on unmitigated achievement and winning at any cost.
Due to their skill at interpersonal manipulation, there has often been an assumption that high Machs possess superior intelligence, or ability to understand other people in social situations.
However, research has firmly established that Machiavellianism is unrelated to IQ. Furthermore, studies on emotional intelligence have found that high Machiavellianism actually tends to be associated with low emotional intelligence as assessed by both performance and questionnaire measures.
Both empathy and emotion recognition have been shown to have negative correlations with Machiavellianism. Additionally, research has shown that Machiavellianism is unrelated to a more advanced theory of mind, that is, the ability to anticipate what others are thinking in social situations.
Relations with Other Personality Traits
Machiavellianism is one of the three personality traits referred to as the dark triad, along with narcissism and psychopathy.
Machiavellianism has been found to be negatively correlated with Agreeableness (r = -0.47) and Conscientiousness (r = -0.34), two dimensions of the Big Five personality model.
Machiavellianism has also been located within the interpersonal circumplex, which consists of the two independent dimensions of agency and communion.
Agency refers to motivation to succeed and to individuate the self, whereas communion refers to motivation to merge with others and to support group interests.
Machiavellianism lies in the quadrant of the circumplex defined by high agency and low communion. Machiavellianism has been found to lie diagonally opposite from a circumplex construct called self-construal, a tendency to prefer communion over agency. This suggests that people high in Machiavellianism do not simply wish to achieve, they wish to do so at the expense of (or at least without regard to) others.
| FRiends, you can't make this stuff up. This story is straight from that noted psychiatrist, Wikipedia.
Also eager to get my last Cruz images finished before Rafael Mendacii exits the race :- ) Just in fun.
Explains him so well in all areas...Thank you for that, very interesting...
I agree, but with Beck on stage with him tomorrow, I wonder how many will really show up...25 people, including staff...
I laughed so hard yesterday when Heidi came out and called him an ‘immigrant’ nothing like the wrath of a woman scorned...
Machiavelli was simply an honest political philosopher. He correctly understood human nature and how humans behaved. He correctly described how humans behaved to manage their necessary group associations and why some were successful and others failed. He was not “evil”. If there was any evil involved in his writings it was there to describe the actual behavior of human beings.
Machiavelli tends to get an undeserved bum rap. He was hardly the creator of the “philosophy” ascribed to him...every courtier and royal figure going back to ancient Mesopotamia would have known the things he wrote about. He was also an open advocate of the republic as a system of government.
| Good, I'm glad you added your comment. Machiavelli was pragmatic and had to make decisions which everyone doesn't agree with.
I also personally take issue with the personality test questions. For instance, white lies are often more socially acceptable than being perfecting honest.
| I have not studied Machiavelli, but I suspect you are right.
Psychiatrists have an interest in creating labels such as Machiavellian and Narcissist. It keeps them employed.
Wish I had a dollar for every MSM story labeling Trump a narcissist.
The more accurate way to understand Machiavelli is that he was a career civil servant who loved his job and all its machinations...he loved “playing the game”. He had come down on the wrong side in one of the periodic wars of the day, and had been exiled from Florence back to his country estate. Think of him as a Washington careerist GS-ranker who had suddenly lost his job and been exiled all the way back to Bug Tussle, Iowa.
He did well in his exiled life, but wanted more than anything to get back in “the great game”...”The Prince” and “Discourses on Livy” are more than anything an open appeal to the new masters of Florentian power. Unfortunately for him (or fortunately, as the case may be), he was turned down cold.
But, but, they always say he is the smartest person in the room. No matter when or where!
On second thought him and Valjar; not that sharp.
I resent the canard about McCarthy, who was proven true decades later by the Venona Papers.
But I like the graphic!
Essentially - 'high functioning sociopath' ... but frankly this refines the sociopath/narcissism/disconnected spectrum perfectly.
It's worth noting that in this context - i.e. in studying pathological psychology - this is not a sort of wink and nod to Cruz's 'clever ways' -> in the context of psychology and what this article is talking about, Cruz is sick, an antisocial personality disorder who's high enough functioning enough to realize that if one is going to do things for his own good at the expense of his fellows whenever convenient, he best be good at hiding and lying. Most anti-socials don't have enough foresight to be successful at being ... antisocial.
Since Cruz has the dimension of not being connected though, I think he's amazed (or really, doesn't yet know it) that the bulk of Republican voters see through him - he would himself not pick up on such cue's. He's like a blind man disguising himself in bright orange neoprene ... the neoprene should deaden the sound he makes scurrying about ... so ... wondering why everyone detects him. He doesn't know what he doesn't know -> that his missing the 'social cue' part.
And ... Welcome to the east coast. Thanks for posting/pinging. Sweet picture.
As I was reading down the image that came to mind was of Barack insane Obama. It fits him perfectly.
I also resent the cheap shot at McCarthy. He was proved right in the end. Sadly, no mention of that in the media.
Machiavelli wasn't necessary immoral himself.
But Ted Cruz has adopted these "Machiavellian" tactics wholeheartedly, and indeed has behaved exactly as if the end does justify the means.
The People have seen this, and Cruz's ongoing collusion with the party elite, and they are rejecting it forcefully.
Donald Trump, on the other hand, as lowbrow as he's been in some instances, has categorically not adopted these sorts of tactics.
Ted Cruz is just out of control with blind ambition at this point, while Donald Trump is pointing out that this movement isn't even about Trump, it's about "We the People".
Ted Cruz and the GOPe are strategically and tactically joined at the hip in the Peoples' minds, and deservedly so. All Cruz can do is go around and literally lie about manh of Donald Trump's policy positions. Ironically Crus has come to personify the "Lyin' Ted" label that Donald Trump sight to associate him with.
| Ok, interesting. So Machiavelli had time on his hands to write about what he saw.
I assumed he was one of the men in power. Didn't realize he had fallen from grace.
I suspect that so many historical figures are widely misunderstood. People are comfortable with the simple narrative, but simple is not always correct.
| Very good point. And I think you are right. Obama is really not that comfortable with other people. He wants to be on that pedestal, but he's not that savvy with people close up.
| Hi Bat and Albion,
I was reading Wikipedia's comments on Joe McCarthy regarding the Verona Papers and here's what is says:
Joseph McCarthy remains a very controversial figure. In the view of a few conservative latter-day authors, such as commentators William Norman Grigg and Medford Stanton Evans, McCarthy's place in history should be reevaluated. Many scholars, including some generally regarded as conservative, have opposed these views.
Other authors and historians, including Arthur Herman, assert that new evidencein the form of Venona-decrypted Soviet messages, Soviet espionage data now opened to the West, and newly released transcripts of closed hearings before McCarthy's subcommitteehas partially vindicated McCarthy by showing that many of his identifications of Communists were correct and that the scale of Soviet espionage activity in the United States during the 1940s and 1950s was larger than many scholars suspected.
After reviewing evidence from Venona and other sources, historian John Earl Haynes concluded that, of 159 people identified on lists used or referenced by McCarthy, evidence was substantial that nine had aided Soviet espionage efforts. He suggested that a majority of those on the lists could legitimately have been considered security risks...
Curious to get the correct historical perspective on Joe McCarthy.
I wouldn’t say he was ever a man “in power”...he was more a tool of those in power. He was at a level high enough to where he was entrusted with important tasks, but never at a level where he could get away with anything. From everything I’ve read, he was personally very upright in his own life activities.
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