Thursday, November 11, 2010

Kissoon the Anti-Hero 70

Kissoon is the great threat to the Cosm. He's a secret self-declared agent of the Iad, though they would probably kill him as an insignificant traitor upon entering the Cosm. He has killed all of the other protectors of Quiddity, the Shoal, including Mary Muralles. He's the anti-hero of TG&SS. He barely loses, and that at a narrow margin.

He almost tricks Randolph Jaffe into giving up his body. He comes even closer to tricking Tesla into giving him her body. He's able to kill and entrance those outside the Loop with his techniques. The ability to create such a Loop itself indicates great power and time-bending skill.

Kissoon is a psychopath who sells trust. This is a classic pattern going back to an excellent description and example by Herman Melville (an author specifically mentioned by Barker in TG&SS) in The Confidence Man.

Bunko is profoundly humorous and yet unsettling. Non-fiction bunko artists include William Chaloner and Gregor MacGregor (born in the 18th century);Lou Blonger, Victor Lustig (the man who sold the Eiffel Tower), George C. Parker (the man who sold the Brooklyn Bridge), Charles Ponzi, Canada Bill Jones, William Thompson Joseph Weil (born in the nineteenth century); Bernie Cornfield and Kenneth Lay (born and active in the 20th century); and Frank Abagnale, Marc Dreier, Robert Hendy-Freegard, James Arthur Hogue, Bernard Madoff, Matt the Knife, Barry Minkow, Richard Allen Minky and Kevin Trudeau (all living).

I strongly urge that any blog readers concentrate and develop a deep understanding of bunko and confidence artists. I urge you to teach your children the signs of a con artist before they are old enough to become fascinated with ideology of any sort. Speaking professionally, for a moment, as a retired certified public accountant who worked successfully as a fraud examiner, I assure you that the best inoculation against ideological fanaticism is a through, prior understanding of the tricks of the bunko artist.

Herbert O. Yardley's The Education of a Poker Player, Frank Abagnale's Catch Me If You Can, Eamon Dillon's The Fraudsters: Sharks and Charlatans - How Con Artists Make Their Money. At a deeper level, I would recommend the “Criminal Games” chapter of Eric Berne's Games People Play and the course books for passing the Certified Fraud Examiner test (especially the section on admissibility of evidence).

Forewarned is forearmed. I read The Education of a Poker Player as a teenager and Catch Me If You Can as a young adult. I was never tempted to become a member of the Christian Right (our next topic), a Libertarian (the following topic) or a modern Liberal (the subsequent topic).

The “relevant” and “topical” section of this blog is about to begin.


  1. people are bunko artists all the time, but unknowingly. We need to distinguish those who cultivate the art from those who fall into it through common human fraility, including many blog readers. The latter are perhaps more dangerous because they're our closest friends and loved ones.

    No one is straight is all the time, not even hermits.

  2. I guess the professional conman or psychopath is a kind of dark shaman

  3. Yes, the most professional con man is a psychopath and a master of dark shamanism.

    The other dangerous bunko artist is the person who falls into bunko as part of human frailty (such as to "avoid hurting anyone's feelings).

    Even hermits are phony, example, Thomas Merton.

    In my own life, through fierce daily meditation and commitment, I manage to purge this characteristic while leading an urban coyote seminar. My words are as honest as Raul in TG&SS when I do so. But such, alas, is not the case, even for me, in a meeting or social function or inside the corporate glass box.