A Hunger for Power


“Put the chair back” shouted the man standing in the middle of the corridor  “Why?” asked the young lady “Because I said so!” he replied, while expecting that such a response grants him enough of a justification for his rudeness. The truth is that he did not even care about the chair being moved. He wasn’t even planning on using the chair. He just wanted to prove that he has the power to order others around because this fight for power is a plague affecting all segments of a society.

It is this same fight for power that makes a man behind a counter in an income tax office send people away at any time they ask him for help.  In this  same quest of power, a policeman would ignore the traffic light and decide to take traffic matters in his own hands. Therefore, he would wave his hands around to allow some cars to pass while others wait their turn. A teacher would grade a student unfairly and when the student asks for a justification she would reply “The grade is final.”

The big kid in the playground would beat up all the little kids just because he can, and the womanizer would break hearts just because he can too.  If we look at this thirst for power  more clearly, it usually is most prominent amongst people who have no real skills or qualifications. It is usually  seen amongst the person who really has no title, the kid who has no friends, and the man or woman with commitment issues.  It is seen when people are cornered for a justification when they have none. For example, a teacher or parent would say “Because I said so” when they are cornered and when they really have no explanation for their orders.

So next time one sees a person lording their unassigned power over the masses , he/she should not be angry or upset. In fact one should feel sorry for that person as that person is probably someone who has nothing else to offer. He or she is desperately trying to stand out while lacking the education, skills, or means to do so.

The thirst for power is not a sign of being evil it is a call for recognition in a society that values recognition  so much. It is a call for earning a space in the community , especially the community we live in today where social media makes people stars, the family name opens doors, and  having “wasta” i.e. connections makes magic happen.

Maybe the person hungry for power is not a tyrant, maybe he or she is a victim

Food for thought.



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