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CompleteMartialArts.com - The 48 Laws of Power

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Our Price: $57.77
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Manufacturer: Viking Adult
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Binding: Hardcover
Format: Bargain Price
Label: Viking Adult
Manufacturer: Viking Adult
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 452
Publication Date: 1998-08-31
Publisher: Viking Adult
Studio: Viking Adult

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Editorial Reviews:

Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, this piercing work distills three thousand years of the history of power in to forty-eight well explicated laws. As attention--grabbing in its design as it is in its content, this bold volume outlines the laws of power in their unvarnished essence, synthesizing the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun-tzu, Carl von Clausewitz, and other great thinkers. Some laws teach the need for prudence ("Law 1: Never Outshine the Master"), the virtue of stealth ("Law 3: Conceal Your Intentions"), and many demand the total absence of mercy ("Law 15: Crush Your Enemy Totally"), but like it or not, all have applications in real life. Illustrated through the tactics of Queen Elizabeth I, Henry Kissinger, P. T. Barnum, and other famous figures who have wielded--or been victimized by--power, these laws will fascinate any reader interested in gaining, observing, or defending against ultimate control.

Spotlight customer reviews:

Customer Rating:
Summary: My Former Bible
Comment: Only two types of people have been and will be attracted to reading this book: those who hope it's about one thing and those who know it's about the other. The former belong to the timid, powerless, low-self esteem majority who are simply looking for the ultimate guide to gaining respect and admiration from their peers. The latter belong to the unscrupulous, dare I say sociopathic ever-growing minority whose end goal is to win at everything against everyone by any means. Once the book has been read and fully digested, one of two conclusions will be reached. The first is a sudden awareness of what a perfectly outstanding tool they hold in their hands and the limitless rewards it can afford them. The second is an absolute disgust and horror at what a dangerous volume this is and the malicious behavior it outright encourages. Interestingly, the timid are no always the ones repulsed and the ruthless are not always the ones aroused. The wave can break either way.

Shortly after this book was published, I happened upon it in a bookstore and knew I had to have it. A blaze of energy electrified my body and pounded through the deepest recesses of my mind. I was on fire, I couldn't put it down and yet I knew I could never share it with anyone, the way a child might hide away their favorite toy. In truth I became obsessed. I had to learn and then master every element of every law and take supreme authority over every aspect of my life. Indeed, this book, The 48 Laws of Power, became my bible, the most passionate conquest I had ever sought to undertake.

Within its pages I met with the reflection of every gruesome bully and every merry manipulator I had ever known. Their power was uncanny and yet so mysterious, mostly because I could never fathom how such apparently absent minds could lay so cool yet strike with such venom. It was awe-inspiring, and I had to come to terms with their secrets. The secrets that earned them respect from their enemies and fear from their admirers. The secrets that won them the most buxom women, who always appeared so entranced by even their rudest and most audacious displays. "How could they get away with everything so smoothly?!" I had wondered. "How could they be so desirable?!" I had thought. "HOW?!"

Well...here is how. It is simple.

Some people are given to a heredity and/or an upbringing that nourishes what is commonly considered 'bad' behavior. Certain genes as well as certain parenting styles perpetuate an attitude of unruliness which leads in its purest variety to utter contempt for anyone else's thoughts, feelings, or needs. Their minds develop without a balanced set of experiences, leading them to logically conclude that the information that they did receive must indeed be correct. This is also applicable to those who suffer violence in their youth, even if that violence is not carried out physically. The fact remains that whatever world with which one is presented is accepted as unmitigated truth. 'Bad' behavior is usually viewed by such a person as normal. Thus selfishness, cruelty, and manipulation are seen as strengths, while compassion, kindness and humility are seen as weaknesses.

Surely there are a bevy of other factors that cannot go without mention. High intelligence, a pleasing appearance, a particular talent, et cetra can all act as lauchpads for immorality if similar virtues in others go unrecognized as being equal. This sense of equality is what it all comes down to, in fact. The very idea of power assumes that another cannot or should not be in a position to where the perspectives of both can be viewed as equally valid. On the one end is the person who is possessed by their own image, on the other is the person who believes that they have no intrinsic worth at all. The two feed off of each other in a sadistic/masochistic symbiotic relationship. The point then comes to bear that a person who believes himself powerful only remains so long as the other believes the same thing. Put two people who both see power as the ultimate attainment and you have the setting for the average business affair. From here, only two things can happen. One will cave, allowing the other to dominate, or neither party will cave, effectively precipitating resentment and rage within both. The former leads to a continuation of the cycle, the latter leads to war.

This book is extremely well-researched and exquisitely written, which is why I still give it three stars. But you must beware of your intentions. Buy this book if you don't care about anyone but yourself, and it pleases you to see another man crumble. Do not buy this book if you have even the slightest interest in saving yourself from years of unnecessary struggle. Remember that the wave does break both ways, and you do not know who you may become if you toss your ethics in the wastebasket. Needless to say, I was the timid one who was sick of being overlooked, but in the end, it was this book that I tossed into the wastebasket. Your call.

Customer Rating:
Summary: 48 laws of power
Comment: I'm pretty into morality but I quite like this book. But If you're not weary of someone who recommends deception (as the author does) you deserve to get suckered. Some of the rhetorical techniques he employs include writing in the style of that wise blind guy who knew everything in Kung fu, it doesn't work at all once you've seen an interview with him. Also putting a number (48) in the title makes it sound very scientific, I'd bet he has no idea if there really are exactly 48 laws of power.

Still I would not say all the laws are immoral or even amoral as the blurb claims. Some, such as not hanging around with people who drag you down and "assuming formlessness" are about self defence not predation. You can pick and choose according to your code of ethics or lack thereof.

It probably should have come with a warning. The philosopher Alfred Whitehead said Machiavellian techniques work well for about 15 years. One of the practical problems with deception is reality does actually exist and cannot be kept at bay forever. When it is revealed it could ruin you or an entire economy (as when vast numbers of people lie to get loans).

Still an interesting book not only for the unscrupulous.

Customer Rating:
Summary: Smart Book
Comment: Very smart book. Has some very unique and useful tools. I don't agree with everything but I like the book and I will use some parts. I try to treat people as I would have them treat me....The Golden Rule. But with trouble makers or bad people this book can be very helpful.

Customer Rating:
Summary: Why do you need this "power"?
Comment: Why do you need this power in the first place? Here is a quote from 7 Habits, "Standing near the graves of famous people, we understand all the silly wars in which they fought."

I will not be surprised if this book is used as a required reading in terrorist camps to show the "real Americans". Clearly, it is against democracy, Christianity, and all other values.

Read 7 Habits by Covey instead.

Customer Rating:
Summary: An Idiots guide to learning power
Comment: this book is absolutely ridiculous, it was written for the idiot's notion of what they believe power is, and just affirms what the dim witted already suspect; "Use a person until they are no longer valuable to you......" AH HA! says the ignoramus who has just been convinced of the vercity of this childrens book.

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