25 concepts

NeoliberalismToo big to failA bull marketKaizenTrickle down economics
The Dunning-Kruger effectHumblebragThe Matthew principleFull spectrum dominanceA coconut culture
IkigaiMunchhausen syndromeStockholm syndromeThe Samson optionDunbar’s number
Group thinkA peach cultureCo-optingMere-exposure effectProximal abandonment
The Coolidge effectExtreme ownershipThe Peter PrincipleAssured Mutual DestructionThe Dobler-Dahmer theory
The more inept people are the smarter they think they are.
In this kind of culture it is hard to establish a connection with someone, but once the connection has been established it will be durable and very cordial.
People get promoted until they attain a position well above their abilities.
When you make an extremely romantic gesture that gesture will be greatly appreciated by the person it’s meant for on the condition that this person already likes you. If that person does not fancy you the very same gesture will come across as something only a serial killer or madman would do.
Those who have shall be given more and those who have not shall lose even the little they have. This principle explains why the rich get richer, succesful authors become more succesful, famous scientists become more famous, etc.
A person seems to be complaining, but is actually bragging. Example: ‘I really don’t enjoy all these VIP parties with all this champagne the modelling agency wants me to attend. I am a beer girl anyway and I wish I could just veg out on the couch tonight.’
Our human brain is capable of being meaningfully connected to a maximum of 150 people at the same time. This has important implications for organisations, companies, the army, government, family life, etc.
A parent can be around his or her child all the time and still be neglecting the child’s needs. By being on the phone all the time for example or by being otherwise preoccupied.
If any one country starts using nuclear weapons against a nation that also has nuclear weapons both countries will be completely wiped out.
People develop a preference for the things they become familiar with. Famous example: Anne Frank developed feelings for a boy she was in hiding with, even though it’s clear from her diary she was not attracted to him at all at first and there was little basis for a connection in other circumstances.
In this type of culture it is surprisingly easy to connect with strangers, since everyone seems to be open, friendly and spontaneous. Soon you discover that these connections are superficial and it’s actually very hard to establish and maintain intimate relationships in this culture.
If Israel is ever overrun by its neighbours it plans to destroy the entire world by launching nuclear weapons from its submarines (which will still be operational even if Israel has been eradicated from the map). This must be the world’s worst case of blackmailing since all of humanity is being threatened.
When something poses a threat to a system the system can incorporate the threat into the system thereby nullifying its effect and strengthening the system it threatened. Contemporary examples: People doing yoga may quit the rat race of the corporate world, but companies may start offering free yoga classes to their employees to keep people on board and to increase their productivity. Another example would be mindfullness, certain anti-establishment underground fashion trends or even a ‘green’ life style.
A life philosophy that encourages you to take full responsibility for whatever happens to you in life and to see the upside of every setback
A Japanese approach to doing business. With this attitude each process is improved a tiny bit every time the process is repeated.
Some mothers intentionally make their own children sick so they can seek medical attention. They do this not to get medical attention, but to simply get attention.
A period of time during which the stock market is booming.
Scientists have observed that males completely lose sexual interest in any available, willing female after being exposed to her for a certain period of time. The male’s libido seems to crash. The male may even show signs of depression.When introduced to a new female the male’s libido is instantly reinvigorated.
During the banking crisis of 2008 the banks claimed that they needed a gigantic injection of public money or else they would collapse with catastrophic consequences for everyone. This slogan helped to convince society a bailout was imperative.
The strategy of building an extremely powerful army on land, in the air and on the water (and possibly in space)
The idea that the state should quit taking care of its citizens. In this philosophy the state is often labelled ‘the nanny state’. The idea is that solidarity slows down economic progress and people should be encouraged to monetize their talents. The model is highly competitive. In theory the state apparatus should be kept as small as possible. In practice this theory leads to a kind of hidden alliance between the state and big corporations. Simply put: capitalism for the poor, socialism for the rich.
The idea that it’s better to tax the rich as little as possible, since the rich will invest their money in such a way that this will eventually benefit all citizens. This approach is thought to be better to share wealth than to tax the rich and use the taxes to give direct benefits to the poor. In practice the positive effect of this is questionable and the rich just end up buying more yachts (as some extremely wealthy people have admitted).
It literally means ‘a reason to get up in the morning’. Researchers have looked into the rather striking number of people living up to 100 years and longer on the Japanese island of Okinawa. Several mechanisms seem to be driving this. One of them is that the people on this island have a culture that encourages them to find their ‘reason to get up in the morning’. In practical terms this is an acitivity that 1. you love doing 2. society wants to pay you for 3. you are good at.
It’s common for hostages to develop sympathy for those holding them hostage.
When a group is dealing with a problem there is the risk they will all start focusing on the very same aspect of the problem thereby coming up with an ineffective solution which they keep clinging to even though it’s not the best option. Often an outsider can quickly offer a more fortuitous course of action.