Use Absence to Increase Respect and Honor: The PIP Failed Strategy

“Too much circulation makes the price go down. The more you are seen and heard from, the more common you appear. ” - Robert Greene

Chess Champion Bobby Fisher
History and even romantic relationships are full of accounts were this strategy has worked for the benefits of those who put it into practice. One of the persons who is known to maneuver this strategy effectively is the widely acknowledged “chess legend”, Bobby Fisher, who became famous for suddenly disappearing after winning mayor championships, making the headlines every time he came back from obscurity.

This seems to be the strategy of the Puerto Rican Independence Party (PIP) for the past two years. After losing their franchise in the country's general elections for 2008, they withdrawn from the public eye, the opinions of their leaders were scarcely heard on newspapers, radio, and the press. Creating a sense of absence in the public political discourse.

Under this political strategy I suppose the party leaders were expecting
that people would see the similarities of the traditional parties and become angry with their corruption, resulting in a general consensus that their role as the reliable and honest champion for check-and-balances would be valued, and therefore missed in the political arena. The party leaders were hoping this would translate into a comeback to the political arena brought by popular demand.

However, the strategy was poorly maneuvered and the effect was not what they expected. In their absence, a new grassroots movement began to breed and develop. This new movement, one that promotes Puerto Rico’s development into a political organization with sovereign powers, began to rapidly gain the terrain the PIP had left unattended. The leaders of this new movement, most who are known to be respectable and honest public figures, began to voice their opinion and many people began to listen. Ideas that also sparked interest and curiosity within the ranks of the Popular Democratic Party’s left wing. This new ideology burgeoned from the efforts of the now defunct William Miranda Marin, who, with his passing, left a noticeable void within the ideological movement.

During the course of the past few months, I’ve witnessed an exodus of people from the PPD and PIP filling up the ranks of the new political movement called Movement for a Sovereign Union or MUS. I was curious and had the chance to visit their HQs. I must say it reminded me of a beehive: the phone never stopped buzzing, papers flew everywhere and countless people were zipping about getting things done. It’s a new kind of energy. It’s the kind of energy that everyone must harness in order to build a great team and reach outstanding accomplishments.

Now going back to the PIP failed strategy -Robert Greene writes that this strategy can be successful only when a certain level of power has been attained. The need to withdraw only comes after you have established your presence; leave to early and you do not increase your respect, as what happened to the PIP during that period, you will be forgotten. Now seeing the threat the new potential contender presents, they're are trying desperately to gain what they lost the last two years to little or no avail. 

What can we learn from this failure? To pull off this strategy, make sure you're always omnipresent in the beginning. In Robert's words, "Only what is seen, appreciated and loved will be missed in its absence. "

This post was inspired by the 16th Law of the book 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene

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