Why Haters Hate

Eddie Ejjbair
3 min readNov 12, 2023

‘The tallest poppy gets cut first’

‘The nail that sticks out gets hammered down’

These sayings describe how groups enforce conformity. Those who distinguish themselves and excel are brought back ‘down to earth’. This is especially true in certain communities. Chris Williamson, for instance, in his interview with Joe Rogan, says that the UK is particularly prone to this sort of social pressure:

What Williamson is describing may apply to the UK and the US, but it might be more accurate to say that smaller communities are more prone to TPS than larger ones. This is often attributed to jealousy and resentment, (the JRE conversation began by discussing this) but there are other reasons why those around us would want to hold us back. In Totem and Taboo, Freud discusses the feelings of ambivalence created by certain forms of social prestige. In an extreme example, a King, by their distinction, cannot come in contact with an ordinary person without repercussions. For this reason, Kings must be guarded against:

Why one must guard against rulers is already known to us; because they are the bearers of that mysterious and dangerous magic power which communicates itself by contact, like an electric charge, bringing death and destruction to any one not protected by a similar charge. All direct or indirect contact with this dangerous sacredness is therefore avoided, and where it cannot be avoided a ceremonial has been found to ward off the dreaded consequences

Freud discusses instances in which this avoidance is not followed, and subjects literally dropped dead in the presence of the King. But while the ruler must be guarded against, there are also efforts to guard the ruler from those over whom he exercises his power:

It is hardly astonishing that the need was felt to isolate dangerous persons like chiefs and priests, by building a wall around them which made them inaccessible to others. We surmise that this wall, which originally was constructed out of taboo rules, still exists to-day in the form of court ceremony

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Eddie Ejjbair

‘Gradually it’s become clear to me what every great philosophy has been: a personal confession of its author and a kind of involuntary and unconscious memoir’