The Edge

Only the human animal will spend its entire life—wasting it—on trying to change the minds of others, their sets of assumptions, their paradigms, how it shakes out and most importantly: the market over your personal agents of force. – Richard Nikoley, Free the Animal

The human mind, where not given full detail, tends to fill in the gaps with its own concepts, whether from a set of assumptions from similar past situations, ideology, paradigms of the time or emotional hang-ups. We long to understand our world, and sometimes when we fail to grasp truth, we seek control over reality through different routes.

Our culture tends to promote confessions of failure, labels exhibitionism as pathology, and readily ties authority with corruption, but what if this is in development of a guise to cover the cultivation of power of another type? That is, the control of narratives and ultimately, people’s thoughts and actions through a façade of “I don’t bite”. You can be a “soft” authority by appealing to a demographic that believes your narrative, even if it is one of victimhood. In fact, sharing failures, being passive, and holding a plot of injustice can get quite a bit of attention.

Tribalism is a natural in-group bias that causes us to value people with similar interests, culture and appearance to us more than those who have very different or even opposing interests and cultures. Like any bias, it is an obstacle to the truth and predisposes us to “groupthink”.

A niche is a specialized but profitable corner of a market. Although a tribe or tribes often exist in this pocket, they are often unconventional and resist conformity.

Using tribalism and niche markets I will explore the power of holding the narrative, and how marketing to a niche will ultimately take the edge off and make the founders disperse to another edge.  Continue reading

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