48 Laws of Power (4)

Always say less than necessary.

“When you are trying to impress people with words; the more you say: the more common you appear – the less you are in control. Even banality will seem like original if you make it vague, open-ended and sphinx-like. Powerful people impress and intimidate by saying less. The more you say, the more likely you are to say something foolish.” – Green 2002

My mother tells me often: “you were a shy child before I sent you to the acting school. Look at you now all confident and stuff. Big man ya know”. Maybe I was but even though may be more vocal than the average person; I’ve always known words are powerful. This knowledge made sure I would not be as foolish as to speak-ill of people or say too much since words can always be widely interpreted and the underlying meaning changed for the worst.

Jim Cramer has made his name in the investment world. He has held stations at Goldman Sachs and found his own hedge fund. His hedge fund track record is phenomenal: only one financial year loss and an average of 24% return over 14 years. He currently works with CNBC on ‘Mad Money’ a quick buy, hold or short program. In my opinion, Mad money is nothing but hype talk – look at all of Cramer’s shouting for goodness sake. Its underlying philosophy is hit or miss; mirroring its outward display of exciting to cover the underlying banality of this program. Cramer has ruined some loyal followers to take trades that financially destroyed them. Yes: some made money – but the majority of his followers have lost money (Roth, 2013). If CNBC scrapped this program in favour of more sound programs like The Motley Fool; they would have appeared more professional and held within high regard.

Never start moving your own lips and teeth before subordinates do. The longer I keep quiet, the sooner others move their lips and teeth. I can thereby understand their real intentions. If sovereign is not mysterious the ministers will find an opportunity to continuously take from us.

 – Han Fei Tzu 3rd century  B.C (Green, R., 2002).




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

Roth, A., 2013. A Statistical Look At Jim Cramer’s skill level. [online] Available: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/a-statistical-look-at-jim-cramers-skill-level/



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