Wednesday 2 August 2023

Syndromes We Don't Have a Name for 9 (in quotes)

Dying empires often have mad emperors, and mad emperors LOVE building physically-imposing structures as monuments to their self-imagined greatness. (MM)

The thinking is that odd politics-scale-thinking where each small development is commemorated with a sanctimonious event. (TO on Hillary Clinton’s autobiography)

Part of their training is clearly about how to sugar-coat when they are challenged about their practice. (BL on practitioners of ABA, a brutal training programme for autistic children.) 

Rupert Everett on being gay in Hollywood: People say: ‘Why were you so self-destructive?’ Well I might’ve been self-destructive, but I also hit a brick wall at every turn.

The British had an insidious way of undermining the authority of the Nawab, which was tenuous at best anyway, by surrounding him with men who had the same character flaws.  (

The narcissist requires an unwarranted amount of admiration from others and throws temper tantrums when criticized or rejected. This includes shallow verbal insults thrown at the other person. (LLJ)

“I’m not like those girly girls, daddy!” (Writer Athena Andreadis on writers like Daphne du Maurier, Mary Renault...)

I worked in the NHS in the 1990s and it was common practice, rather than make a senior manager redundant, to move them somewhere they weren't particularly needed or wanted. (Guardian agony page)

I was suffering from the apparently common delusion that I was younger, fitter and more fertile than virtually anyone else of my age. (BW)

Everybody thinks they belong in the group ten years below them.
(Katharine Whitehorn)

“Remember: Dikes are safe at present,” a bulletin from the Portland Housing Authority read on May 30, 1948. “You will be warned if necessary. You will have time to leave. Don’t get excited.” People were not warned in time and the city was flooded as the dikes fully gave way. Fifteen people died in the floods. ( When they tell you to stay put, grab everybody and get out NOW.)

Corporate culture in 80s Japan. People slept in the office, got there extra early, left extra late... whether the work justified it or not. Spending HOURS pretending to be overwhelmed with work was preferable to just... doing the work you had and going home. (@Iron_Spike)

Some people have the idea that a 'strong, feisty' woman is someone who is strong and feisty with everyone other than them, and to them, she is deferential and meek. (LW. And they put quite a lot of pressure on you to be strong and feisty with other people – “I won’t patronise you by offering to help”, “It’s about getting what you want.” Sometimes because they want to watch you bullying other people.)

You’re allowed to be strong. But not too strong. You’re allowed to be intelligent. But not too intelligent. Educated. But not too educated. Etc. (NS)

We were using “snowflake” in activist circles at university a decade ago to describe people who joined our groups for their own self-promotion and melted away when it wasn't all about them. (JBH)

She was always on the lookout for slights, never answering a question actually asked but rather responding to some implied criticism which she thought lay behind it. (Martin Edwards)

There's this episode of 30 Rock where Liz's scumbag ex becomes a minor celebrity for doing a good deed. But his basic nastiness turns people off and his Z List status fades, so he becomes idiotically desperate to claw back attention. (@dimwittedly)

They tend to become attached quickly and/or intensely, developing feelings and expectations that are not warranted by the history or context of the relationship. Since they tend to be ingratiating and submissive, people with dependent personality disorder tend to be in relationships in which they are emotionally or physically abused. (Wikipedia. And the other party may push and push your boundaries.)

Hence the phenomenon of the “Mary Child” a known classroom trope amongst parents of school-age children. A well-spoken, socially confident and “attractive” kid of well-spoken, socially confident parents. Gets chosen for things. Is advantaged, gets given advantages. (@MxBadgerNorth. In the context of who plays what in the nativity play.)

But he belonged to a class of men, I could see at a glance, who never say a rude thing to your face, and never think a kind one either before your countenance or behind your back. (The Female Detective, 1864)

One of my personal horrors is running into someone I sort of know and like in public and not understanding the signals they’re sending out that they’d like to get going now please. (@anne_theriault)

Some of the more batty policies seem like bargaining chips rather than real ideas "all right, we'll bin the nutty one we were never going to do and which would've been a disaster, what's your compromise?" (@abstex)

X seems to have a tendency toward dishonesty even in situations where there is no rational reason for it. (NYT. Why did you tell them a pack of lies when the truth would have done? Because the lies were more convincing!)

The Amalasuntha Moment: when critical mass of the elite abandon its posts/retire rather than face consequences of the actions they implemented. (Byzantine Ambassador ‏@byzantinepower)

More here, and links to the rest.

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