Here are the final three warning signs on how to see "it" coming. The other seven were posted on Monday through Thursday.
8. “We've always thought about it this way, and we always will.” I can do no better than Justice Felix Frankfurter, who decided a legal issue one way in 1943 and then completely reversed course in 1949. He gave this explanation in his opinion in Henslee v. Union Planters Bank: “Wisdom too often never comes, and so one ought not to reject it merely because it comes late.” Genius.
9. “It is what it is.” Huh? This phrase now is used principally by those who want to sound insightful and wise but who are just dazed and confused. Only Buddhist monks are allowed to talk like Buddhist monks.
10. “You are the most wonderful person I have ever met. We were meant to start this business/do this deal/win this suit.” Beware flattery without facts, especially when it comes too fast, too soon. It is a sign of a sociopath. They target their victims (people they can use), compromise their targets’ integrity, exploit them and toss them aside when finished. The whole cycle starts with false flattery.
For more information read “The Sociopath Next Door” by Martha Stout and “Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us” by Robert D. Hare. Or, sit down with “Othello.” Shakespeare identified the prototype sociopath, Iago, who remarks, “When devils will the blackest sins put on/They do suggest at first with heavenly shows. . . .”
Speaking of the devil, watch this scene from “The Devil’s Advocate” (a truly horrible movie). Al Pacino stars as Satan, with his day job being the managing partner of an international firm. He counsels a colleague who knows Pacino is Satan: “Don’t get too cocky. No matter how good you are. Don’t let them see you coming. That’s the gaff, my friend — make yourself small. Be the hick. The cripple. The nerd. The leper. The freak. Look at me — I’ve been underestimated from day one.”Here is the title card in the great fight: private investigator Flippo in the white trunks v. Satan in the red. I’m in Flippo’s corner, hoping and praying to see it coming. The devil be damned.