Petty tyrants

From Gender and Tech Resources

The “petty tyrants” are mentioned in The Fire Within [1]: A petty tyrant is a tormentor. Someone who either holds the power of life and death over warriors or simply annoys them to distraction. Petty tyrants teach us detachment.


  • Tyrant: Primal source of energy, ruler of the universe (alias "life is a bitch/bastard, and then your die")
  • Petty Tyrants: Tyrannical rulers or authoritarian persons who actually hold power over life or death of others. We gather data on “things” to connect dots to find stories (working theories) for further investigation into “things” to find counter moves healthy for ourselves, life, and others.
  • Minor Petty Tyrants: Tormentors who are fearsome and inflict misery, but do not hold any real power over life or death of others. In digital social media contexts we have sockpuppets and trolls.
  • Little Petty Tyrants: Tormentors with violence and cruelty; inducing fear through deviousness; subjugating another through sadness; or by making another act in anger or rage.
  • Teensy-weensy Petty Tyrants: These are the tormentors who are just frustrating, exasperating and annoy to distraction. IMHO hanging out with those now and again is also a great exercise in not giving power away and not taking someone elses power away either.

Tyrants applied for interpretation

God does not play dice with the universe; He plays an ineffable game of his own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of any of the other players, to being involved in an obscure and complex version of poker in a pitch dark room, with blank cards, for infinite stakes, with a dealer who won't tell you the rules, and who smiles all the time. ~ Terry Pratchett, Good Omens

'Modern war' is a combination of military, economic, political, and propaganda pressure against "the enemy", fought on all fronts at once. What western nations have used for centuries is a two-pronged strategy, one energy-driven (aimed at securing more resources from the rest of the world) and the other security-driven (aimed at enhancing the capacity to intervene in exactly such locales), that governs policies toward much of the world.

Spent time searching the subject of who your social media friends might be? Ever wonder what the intelligence agencies are up to with fake profiles? Driven mad at people who derail intelligent discussions?

In information operations, the goal seems to be to create citizens who ‘are what they think’ to the advantage of ‘the man behind the curtain’ or a center tower all-seeing eye as described in Foucaults panopticon. A citizenry constantly on guard for secret, unaccountable surveillance is one that’s constantly being remade along the lines the state would prefer. Foucault illustrated this point by reference to a hypothetical prison called the Panopticon. Designed by utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham, the Panopticon is a prison where all cells can be seen from a central tower shielded such that the guards can see out but the prisoners can’t see in.

And is attaining (and maintaining) such absolute power feasible? Knock-on effects?


  1. The Fire From Within: