Sunday, March 10, 2013

Why The Least Desirable Persons Tend To Rise To The Top in Politics

Time and time again electorates are disappointed whenever changes in anyone or group of politicians don't lead to improvements in society. In fact things often get progressively worse, moreover a perpetual cycle exists where as things worsen the electorate demands sweeping changes only to see things decline further in spite of optimistic expectations.

One reason for this is that usually the persons who rise to the upper echelons of political power tend to be formed by the worse elements distilled from society. They tend to disregard morals, ethics and discount the requirements of honesty and integrity in their daily operations. A basic observation yields evidence to this notion and can be explained as follows:

Inherent Psychological Desire for Power and Control.

Persons who aspire to higher levels in politics have a an insatiable desire for power and control a lust to be in charge. An almost hyper-active drum major instinct to control, to direct and to lead according to their ideology. They soon realize however that the presentation of their desired ideology doesn't result in their social plans being fulfilled, since gaining a consensus amongst the entire society is impossible. They therefore must either abandon their plans (and commensurate power) or opt for a different approach of coercion, or intimidation to achieve their goals (while maintaining their power).

As a means to an ultimate end the politician must then disregard ethics and surrender their most human traits. Consequently, the most unscrupulous are more likely be the most successful in the political sphere. For they must be willing to do virtually anything to achieve their ultimate objective because the ends justifies the means. 

To Get and Stay at the Top They Must Crush Dissent

To solidify their current position or to gain momentum the politician must amass a group of loyal supporters who must adhere to the ideology of the leader and impose severe discipline and retribution on anyone who doesn't fall in line. This group is also mandated to impose by force the decrees of the leader on others. 

A Willingness To Appeal to Base Instincts

The most popular and familiar approach is to appeal to base instincts and the lowest common denominator so as to convince the the fickle and the gullible by appealing to passions and emotions. Most often negative propaganda, hatred of an enemy or envy are the preferred methods of choice. The contrast between "us" and "them" is consequently propagated to gain the affinity of the masses or the majority. This is a useful tool as it distracts the population from closely examining the actions of the politician themselves.

Apathy and Cold-hardheartedness Are Political Prerequisites

As is expected to thrive in the political ecosystem requires a degree of ruthlessness required to uphold the hierarchy and to impose severe consequences on dissenters, contenders or the disloyal. The person who can instinctively operate in this regard is therefore granted the upper hand in their quest for political hegemony. Consequently in politics there will be special opportunities for the ruthless and unscrupulous.

A Willingness to Say or Do Anything

Unfortunately in politics advancement depends largely on a willingness to commit immoral acts substantiated in the name of doing it all for the collective good or "in service of the people". On this basis public outcry is also stifled and there is brutal suppression of counter arguments, corruption and favouritism.  

Persons With Ethics & Integrity Avoid Politics

Sadly what was described above is the main road through which the aspiring politician must traverse in order to attain the highest levels of political office. Further compounding phenomenon is the fact that persons who may have a genuine noble desire to lead with honesty and integrity would not find themselves in such an environment, therefore the pool of least desirable people becomes more concentrated. 


Unfortunately these are universal principles that are very much prevalent today. The sooner people realise the character and nature of their willing "political representatives" the sooner they'll appropriately adjust their expectations. 


  1. This theory doesn't apply to Trinidad and Tobago. The PNM has a long history of voter padding, bringing in small islanders and registering them to vote - check the residents of Sea Lots and Laventille. This and other corruption techniques was how they managed to hold power for 30 years. Their strategy of keeping the vast majority of their supporters in poverty and uneducated was their means to election bribery and control. The vast majority of the public service is PNM as a result making it difficult to effect change at the non-executive level due to resistance from these long standing PNM members. Those in the current government have to deal with entrenched opposition and miracles do not happen overnight (or in this case in 2 years)

    1. What is the population of sea lots in relation to that of Trinidad and Tobago?

      Were you educated abroad or in Trinidad and Tobago?

      If here, then how can you quantify/qualify your position that the PNM governments of the past have endeavoured to keep their supporters in poverty and uneducated? Were their supporters denied access to education or employment?

      The idea that one party is all bad/evil while the other is all good/righteous is one I beg you to revisit. I offer to you that no party is perfect, and all parties, including the present, have fallen far short of what the majority of Trinbagonians would expect.

      Having read the article I would say the opposite in that it completely fits our circumstances in T&T.

  2. Thanks for your comments.

    I would not dispute that those dishonest and immoral methods were utilized by previous governments however the point is that this type of immoral behavior is very much universal amongst all politicians to various degrees in spite of many being unwilling to admit it.


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