The Restraints of Civilized People

Combat Training Principles — Secrets For Staying Alive When
“Rules” Don’t Apply “The Unconscious Power Of Assumed Constraints”*****************************************************************”One should always play fairly when one has the winning cards”-Oscar Wilde*****************************************************************

People often ask me for the best way to “protect” them in some
imagined criminal assault.

They want me to respond by giving some perfect technique that
handles their particular imagined scenario.

They’re often disappointed at first when I don’t respond the way
they want me to answer their question. They don’t like to hear
the truth — that violence is random and thinking only in terms
of “techniques” to use against a random act is a good way to get
you killed.

The problem with practically everyone’s approach to dealing with
violence is not that they’re incapable of learning techniques.

It’s that they don’t understand this way of responding to
violence — real asocial, maim, cripple, or “kill you now”
violence — is seriously flawed.

That’s because when it comes to violence, we (meaning you and me,
the productive, law-abiding members of society) live lives of

We are taught early on by parents, teachers, and our legal system
that if we want the benefits of living in a society like ours
then we need to constrain our violent impulses when things don’t
go our way.

And obviously, this is a very good thing.

It’s the reason you don’t kill the obnoxious jerk that steals
your parking place, you wait patiently for the light to turn
green at an intersection, and you don’t shoot the neighbors
Labrador for digging up your rose garden.

When it comes to the subject of violence, we are controlled by
society much like circus elephants are controlled by their

These trainers know the most reliable way to handle an elephant
is to “condition” it when it is very young.

They put a shackle on the baby elephant’s leg with a short chain
that is held in the ground by a very long spike. The baby
elephant tugs at the chain attempting to break free.

After a short while the elephant breaks the skin around the
shackled leg and gives up. But the pain of attempting to break
free is never forgotten.

Later on, that same method is used to control the now fully-grown
elephant, even though the adult beast could pull the spike free
with no more effort than you and I use to remove a thumbtack from
a corkboard.

And the same approach is taken with all productive members of
society regarding the tool of violence.

We are “shackled” at a very young age — first at home, later in
ours schools, and finally at our workplaces.

When faced with violence, most of us respond SOCIALLY.

We attempt to communicate with our attacker in hopes of avoiding
the use of violence. We may threaten to use this tool but we
really don’t want to since that shackle is still firmly attached.

The sad part of ASSUMED CONSTRAINTS is that most martial arts,
combat sports, and, yes, even most “reality fighting systems”
teach you to respond — WHILE STILL SHACKLED!

It doesn’t work.

I learned long ago the first order of business is to teach my
clients how easy it is to break those ASSUMED CONSTRAINTS when
the threat warrants such an approach.

Because the real threat to society is when we run up against some
“rogue elephant” that has never been “shackled” and has no
problem using violence to get what he wants. And imagine how easy
it is to fight someone if they have their leg shackled.

Remember first and foremost — violence is rarely the answer to
most situations, but when it is the answer, it’s the ONLY answer.

Once you understood that (and as a reader of this newsletter you
have heard me say it numerous times) you then must be able to rip
off those ASSUMED CONSTRAINTS and free yourself so you can
utilize the tool of violence when required.

I can assure you the methods and principles taught in TFT Live
Seminars and our various other products do EXACTLY that, allowing
you your best chance to survive an asocial, violent threat.

Take some time to digest this message, read through it again —
then look within to see if you can truly break free from your
“shackle” if the need arises.

If you’re not sure — really sure — then get some help to do
this because you don’t want to discover those shackles are intact
with a 9mm pressed against your ribcage.

Until next time,

Tim Larkin
Master Close-Combat Instructor,
Creator of Target-Focus(TM) Training

PPS. Our live training seminars “Surviving The Most Critical 5
Seconds Of Your Life” show you how to rip off the shackles that
leave you unable to act in a life-threatening situation. Imagine
living your life without fear. That’s what this class gives you.
Check out for
the next one. Be sure to take advantage of attending with a
guest — the second person gets in for only $450, a super deal.

And as time permits, I’ll answer selected questions.
Submit your questions at:

If someone forwarded this newsletter for you to read, be
sure and sign up for your own personal copy at:

There you’ll find the tools that can help you survive a
violent criminal attack.

(c) Copyright 2003-2006, The TFT Group

You can often see this problem Tim speaks of when Leftists talk about how if you use the tools of violence that the terrorists use, that makes you as bad as the terrorist. It doesn’t really matter if they think the tool of violence is inherently against civilization and pacifism, nor does it matter if they believe that America is too powerful to be able to use violence “fairly”, since the real problem is that Leftists operate in a civilized world that has trained them to be sheep and sheep they will remain. People may know about useful idiots that the Soviets produced in the West to help usher in a social paradise of communist rule. Useful idiots are useful precisely because they are trained to react in a certain way to stimuli. Mostly it is anti-American in nature their reactions.

A normal productive sheep in the triangle of sheep, sheepdog, and wolf, does not want to hurt other sheep. A sheep wants to frolic around and eat grass. It seeks safety in numbers. (world opinion) The sheepdog knows that to defeat the wolf one must have fangs as sharp as the wolf. To defeat a wolf that kills, one must kill the wolf. The sheepdog lives under civilized restraints yet it is capable of releasing those limits when faced against enemies of humanity, or in this case sheepistry. The wolf lives under no constraints. Waterboard is or is not torture is not a subject they really care much about.

I’ve written before about TFT and their products here. I know about the restraints of civilized nations because I felt it myself. But it is your life. You must find the will in your heart to do what is necessary, even if it means breaking the psychological conditioning that you learned when you were young to never hit, hurt, or kill anybody on purpose. Your will has been shackled by civilization because that is the purpose of civilization. That is how it works, through the social compact and through teaching the young that to violate the rules means pain and punishment. You are social, therefore you obey the rules. Yet you must also understand that there are more powerful and higher rules that exist than just the social compact. There is the Rule of the Jungle, there is the law(s) of warfare, and the laws of existence itself. Do not think to deceive yourself as the Left has done that the only rules that matter are the rules made up by humans. We are still constrained by our human nature and thus nature and God all have a say in what we are and what we will do.

Psychology has studied many methods to condition a person via numerous different methods and techniques. The dog salivating when the bell is rung because it knows food is coming, is the classical method. But positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement also come into play. Like propaganda, the first step in resisting conditioning is to understand and accept that you can be conditioned. And very easily at that.

UPDATE: A more convincing argument was made here at Callimachus‘s blog by me. Here is the comment below.

Someone replied, “well, I guess if you know people with kids over there, it’s different.” Her reply was, “No, because they’re over there killing other people’s children.”

This quote reminds me of something. Which is that it is very similar, or at least a derivation of, people’s reactions to criminal and asocial (or anti-social) violence. For those whom have lived in civilization all their lives, the idea that one can or even should engage in violent acts against others is an atrocious and very upsetting thought.

They were taught early in life never to hit, hurt, or steal from others. They were taught early in life that those who hit and hurt others want to steal something or just because they like hurting other people.

They were taught to be productive sheep. Many people already know the triangle of sheep, sheepdog, and wolf. This is only a derivation of the relationship.

Civilization flourishes because it indoctrinates, conditions, and convinces the majority of people in it that they should obey the laws and work together instead of against each other. Most people don’t want to murder and kill other fellow human beings, due to the instinctual social nature of humanity that required your fellow human beings in order to survive and cooperately hunt for food. Thus it is very easy to convince compassionate and merciful individuals, especially when they are young, that there are solid benefits to be had in civilization, if you follow the rules.

The problem occurs when this conditioning and early indoctrination is challenged. Some people don’t want to give up their childish and optimistic view of the world and of humanity. Some people want to continue to believe that everything will be all right so long as we run to the teacher, the UN, and appeal for our grievances to be addressed. That so long as we obey the rules, the guilty will be punished and the innocent vindicated.

Unfortunately, the real world isn’t really like that. And it really really isn’t like that in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The people on Flight 93, what was their immediate instinctual and conditioned reaction to criminals, murderers, and hijackers? To comply, to cooperate, to not resist, and to wait until lawful authorities were around to tell them what to do. That is the civilized response. That is the response civilization seeks when it indoctrinates, conditions, and convinces its members to a part of the nation.

Some resisted immediately. Those were the ones that were natural leaders or those that chose civilization instead of being conditioned and indoctrinated by it. They were the ones that the terrorists made an example out of, first.

Even though the passengers of Flight 93 outnumbered the terrorists, they did not go beserk and try to kill their enemies, the wolves, after weapons and violence were demonstrated. Not because most of them liked the hijackers or were sympathetic to them, no they did what they did because they did not want to harm each other. Most sheep go through its entire cycle of life without ever being capable of hurting another animal.

Like most productive members of society, they called for 911, the police, and government authorities, waiting with the trust that they will be saved so long as they follow the rules.

When their conditioning and civilized behavior came face to face with the knowledge that cooperating with the hijackers will not save their lives or anyone else’s, the passengers of Flight 93 had to make a choice. You well know the choice that they made. The sheep became the cape buffalo. Still vegetarians, but the hunter now instead of the hunted.

Sheep don’t become wolves nor do they grow fangs literally. They are still vegetarians at heart, meaning productive members of society that does not cannibalize other humans for sustenance. But because humans are the way we are, we can change. We can choose to change and become more than we thought ourselves capable of.

Sheepdogs are those that have been born and cultivated as warriors. Animals meant to hunt down or kill wolves, in order to protect the sheep and its shepherd. When encountering a criminal or a danger to family, clan, nation, and neighbors, their first instinct is to bare the fangs and use violence. They also eat meat, which is not something vegetarians can find themselves comfortable watching. Even if they know that the meat eaten is only of their enemies, it still smacks too much of cannibalism. This is a choice made by humans that seek to protect other humans from our mutual enemies. Anti-social mass murderers are only one kind of enemy.

Sheepdogs can kill as easily as wolves. To the flock of sheep, this makes sheepdogs no better than wolves. They’re killing other people’s children, after all, right. Just like wolves would kill our lambs, right. This makes it even harder for the sheep to understand the use of violence or accept the use of it or use it.

The truth is a little bit more elaborate than the sheep’s view of things. The sheepdog knowingly lives under the limitations and seals of civilization. It is a choice they make and it is a life they enjoy living. Threats and legal repercussions help keep the sheepdog from ever attacking a sheep, but it is not threats and legal repercussions that is the primary component in preventing a protector of humanity from savaging humanity. It is their conscience. Their will. Their spirit. They have better things to do than take on helpless sheep. There is more of a challenge in attacking and taking down wolves.

The article Calli linked to, contained a reference to the Battle of Zama.

In Patton, the 1970 film, one of the intriguing traits of the general as played by George C. Scott unfolds not in front of that mammoth American flag, or at a party with a lumpish Red Army general, but on a quiet grassy lane in the hills of Tunisia. On a somber afternoon during the North Africa campaign, Patton directs his jeep onto a knoll dotted with ruins, then steps down to resurrect an ancient scene to Omar Bradley (played by Karl Malden) as trumpets echo in the distance.

“It was here,” Patton says. “The battlefield was here.” He means the Battle of Zama, where in 202 B.C. Roman legions under Scipio routed Hannibal’s Carthaginians and ended the Second Punic War.

“I was there,” Patton mutters before reciting lines of his own creation on “the pomp and toils of war . . . the age-old strife . . . when I fought in many guises and many names.”

Coincidentally, I wrote about the 2nd Punic Wars here. And let’s not forget Steven Pressfield’s Gates of Fire, an epic novel about ancient battles but modern humanity.

Steven Pressfield’s article analysis about tribes is also worth your take in checking out. It is essentially a different and condensed version of Bill Whittle’s post of the same name, Tribes. Don’t forget about the Al Ameriki tribe ; )

All of these show the attempts to better understand human limitations and potentials by studying the past and what would otherwise be seen as intellectual quests for knowledge.

Does not the subject of tribalism belong to anthropologists and sociologists instead of those interested in warfare and victories? No it does not. I actually wrote socialist when I wanted sociologist. That’s a demonstration of Freudian slip for you, when you are typing or saying what you really mean or are thinking instead of what you intended to mean.

Explore posts in the same categories: Philosophy

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