There are scores of self-help books out there about how to be a better person. Each one has its own way of teaching the ways and means of self-improvement, and each has some really wonderful lessons to apply to one’s life.
But there is an untapped market out there– one that many people learn through sheer upbringing, and some learn through clear-cut instruction by others who have learned the way. It helps some people get to the top. It helps others remain out of the limelight. But one thing is for certain about all of these people:
They have all somehow learned to be enormous assholes.
Now, speaking as one of the good guys (I hope), I can honestly say that I don’t know how these people learned their trades. But being one of the good guys, I can certainly guess. And usually, the guesses of a good guy (or gal) are pretty much dead-on.
So, here is my theory on how people can be the gaping asshole they’ve always wanted to be– in ten easy steps:
1. Don’t listen to anyone. Ignore people who try to tell you what is right and/or good. Pretend that you– and only you– can make the right decision about anything.
2. Ignore your critics. You don’t necessarily have to plug your ears and shout, “La! La! La!” to drown them out… but a good asshole learns how to do it inside their head so nobody can see. It also doesn’t hurt to tell a critic that they are sinners, or damned to hell, or– if you’re from the USA– un-American for criticizing your views. That’ll make ’em learn.
3. Continually spout the same rhetoric over and over again. Surely if you believe something so much as to repeat it over and over and OVER again, it HAS to be true. And surely SOMEONE will start to believe it… eventually.
4. Take away everyone else’s toys. Be greedy! The more you have, the more important you are. And those who don’t have what you have are obviously WRONG and BAD.
5. Believe that your way is the only way. Write your own laws. And woe be unto those who say you can’t do so. Because after all, if you can’t be God, you can at least pretend to be God-LIKE.
6. Make things up. They might just make you sound like you’re actually smart. And don’t worry if people laugh. They’re not laughing at YOU– they’re laughing at THEMSELVES for being so stupid as to not have thought of them already!
7. Intimidate. It’s the only way to succeed.
8. Frighten. It’s the only way to get the cowards to bow down to you.
9. Terrorize. It’s the only way to gain control of your enemies.
10. Run for President. (This one only works if your name is George W. Bush.)