Winston Churchill: “Madam, would you sleep with me for five million pounds?”
Socialite: “My goodness, Mr. Churchill… Well, I suppose… we would have to discuss terms, of course”Winston Churchill: “Would you sleep with me for five pounds?”
Socialite: “Mr. Churchill, what kind of woman do you think I am?!”
Winston Churchill: “Madam, we’ve already established that. Now we are haggling about the price.
There are many who try to discredit that famous Winston Churchill exchange, but, it sums up the human species rather succinctly. A big enough reward will entice the desired behavior no matter how moral or ethical a person believes they are. Oh, a reward doesn’t have to be money. Why do you think there are all of those movies where people kidnap the family of someone in power to get them to do something the kidnappers want? What you won’t do for money you will do for family. What you won’t do for either family or money you will do for something else.
The next best reward is power-privilege. Do this evil thing and we will make you the Mayor of Chicago, Governor of New York, etc. Prisons use this technique all of the time. Unless you behave a certain way you don’t get to visit the yard. Want a slightly better job with a tiny bit more pay you have to do this other set of things.
Corporations aren’t much different than prisons when it comes to behavioral control. Nobody who is a good little drone, keeping their head down in their assigned box, doing a good job will ever be promoted. They are too valuable in their current spot and they “haven’t shown initiative.” Management promotes those they like. This leads to all of the disgruntled muttering about “slept with the boss,” “brown noser” and various uglier statements.
Fill a young man’s head with thoughts of duty, honor and patriotism and they will willingly wade into battle prepared to die if necessary. Few bother to think about the “less than death” adverse outcomes. I’ve always liked that euphemism. Medical professionals use it all of the time, “adverse outcome.” It lumps everything from a nasty allergic rash to death all under one tidy umbrella. It says something bad happened without ever assigning blame.
I have no idea if this organization is really ancient or if it was formed ten minutes after they found me. I suspect the truth is somewhere between those two extremes but that truth doesn’t interest me. Hollywood movie types would be shocked to learn we don’t actually kill many of those we are sent to assassinate.
You find that odd don’t you? It’s true enough. Why do you think I know so much about human motivation? Did you ever think about why I was paired with a master chef? Oh, you thought he was my cover and I had to act as his favorite kitchen rat letting everyone think we were gay?
Only used that cover once so I could kill a target with a steak knife from the restaurant. High profile. Difficult to get near. We had been working there a week when I hid six of the knifes in the mens room. Security padded me down and let me in while the target was in there. The knife was a good option. He even grabbed it when I stabbed him once in the heart. Dead fingerprints aren’t the same as living. Made it look like a suicide. I even bussed the table on the way back so they would believe he used the knife from his table. The security people cheap companies hire never really look at the face of kitchen staff. That’s why the people they protect so often get killed. Oh, I was smart enough to slip on a waiter uniform before going to the bathroom and smart enough to take it off before I bussed the table. I’m not a complete idiot.
I’m normally paired with a master chef because we rarely kill our targets. Oh, they die, most certainly. Usually that happens when we are long gone. Up to six months could go by before they expire. I only have to resort to baser methods when time is of the essence.