48 Laws of Power (2)


jaws of ingratitude
STF230256 The Devil pulling people into the Jaws of Hell (carved wood);French School;carved wood;600 X 551;Church of St. George, Hagenau, France;Bildarchiv Steffens;Out of copyright

48 Laws of Power: Law 2

Never put too much trust in friends. Learn how to use enemies.

Be wary of friends – they will betray you more quickly, for they are easily aroused to envy. They also become spoiled and tyrannical. But hire a former enemy and he will be more loyal than a friend, because he has more to prove. In fact, you have more to fear from friends than from enemies. If you have no enemies, find a way to make them – Green, 2002.

I know this well from life experience. I’m sure many of my readers will be in the same position as me in regards to trusting friends and being burned. I’ve been by friends, business people, and ex-girlfriends. Bring out the worlds tiniest trumpet for me. Shakespeare is known as one of the greatest writers all time. All his plays were surreal and uncannily realistic. His play are full of betrayals from all the categories I suffered (and probably you) suffered from.

In regards to investing, never put much trust in your friends’: stock tips; advice; support; security or word. Cramer is famous for his Mad Money show – yet many don’t know that he is been riddled with criticism for borderline fraudulent behaviour since he graduated from Harvard. But still… his hedge fund made legendary returns under his reign.


One of my best business partners (investment consulting) is a prior enemy. In fact we still don’t see eye to eye. Both of us are alphas and as alphas: we want to be the only dominate force in our vicinity. Having two alphas in a constricted place is asking for trouble. However, I managed to cultivate a successful business relationship. How? Because I knew if I humbled myself and asked to work together, his pride would make him say yes (as if he had something to prove). I also knew that former enemies can make great partners if you can use their negative energy against you and transform that into a mutual project in order to extract maximum return.

The Laws of Ingratitude: Knowing what would happen if you put a finger in the mouth of a lion, you would stay clear of it. With friends you will have no such caution. And if you hire them, they will eat you alive with ingratitude – Green, 2002.

Authority: know how to use enemies for your own profit. You must learn to grab a sword not by its blade – which would cut you – but by the handle: which allows you to defend yourself. The wise man profits more from his enemies than a fool from his friends – B. Gracian


Gracian, B. 2014.

Greene, R., 2002.48 Laws of Power. London: Profile Books Ltd.


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