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Lessons from Michael Franzese

Hello guys,

I know I'm being a follower here (Lucio: I'm looking at you), but being a learner you always learn from someone. So follow and you might learn something as I did. That brings us to:

Michael Franzese

I admit I was not expecting this kind of mindset and advice. It's quite contrarian to my prejudices about mobsters. However as we already agreed upon, I think he's a minority among them (since he survived and got out, did 8 years of prison still) Anyway, here it is:

My intention with this thread is that if we find a good video of him full of lessons we can share it here.

Yeah, I love the guy, I listen to YouTube while eating these days, and it's 90% Franzese these days.

Tip on how to share the lessons, John, I think if you list them in bullet points and/or add the specific time and/or quote the main passage, it'll help readers -me included- to go straight to the content.

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John Freeman
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Thanks for the feed-back!

Here is some background about him from Wikipedia. So he was not a former boss as advertised in his videos, but a former caporegime. What he says still holds its value but changes the perspective on it. Here is the classical American Mafia hierarchy.

  • Caporegime (or capo) – A caporegime (also captain or skipper) is in charge of a crew, a group of soldiers who report directly to him. Each crew usually contains 10–20 soldiers and many more associates. A capo is appointed by the boss and reports to him or the underboss. A captain gives a percentage of his (and his underlings') earnings to the boss and is also responsible for any tasks assigned, including murder. In labor racketeering, it is usually a capo who controls the infiltration of union locals. If a capo becomes powerful enough, he can sometimes wield more power than some of his superiors. In cases like Anthony Corallo they might even bypass the normal Mafia structure and lead the family when the boss dies.

Yeah, I think by "boss" they mean "in charge of people".

It's like a manager, even if he is a first-level manager, he is still a boss to someone.

So he had that formal "boss" authority on his crew.

Also, since he was making so much money, the crew around him was huge. And the fact he was making so much money for the family also gave him far more informal power and authority than his official position would normally warrant him.

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

 

Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on January 12, 2021, 12:08 pm

And the fact he was making so much money for the family also gave him far more informal power and authority than his official position would normally warrant him.

That is also my understanding.

Yeah, I think by "boss" they mean "in charge of people".

It's like a manager, even if he is a first-level manager, he is still a boss to someone.

I agree he was a boss with the meaning you describe. I think they play on this ambiguity to sell more. Whatever it is I think it’s clear now.

  1. Contempt for money is a trick of the rick to keep the poor without it (14:37): by always repeating that money doesn't buy happiness, people might (subconsciously) manipulate others not to seek money. That makes it easier for the rich to make money as it lowers the competition for the top positions in society
  2. Vet and assess the people who want to get serious with your children: you have a certain power and influence over your children. Why not using it for good? Vet their spouses, and if you don't like them, you might have a shot at derailing the relationship (or to bless the relationship)
  3. Listen more than you talk: listening is a way of gathering intelligence. It mostly applies to business
  4. The higher the stakes, the more careful (and skilled) you need to be (7:14): people playing with lower stakes, they can afford to be careless and sloppy. If you wanna play in the big league, better be skilled, and strategize accordingly
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John Freeman
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More good stuff from this guy, it's worth your time. It's true that learning power from mobsters is very smart. This is their shtick: Power dynamics. Same with politicians maybe?

 

You know, I used to say (seriously) that my organization is a Mafia. And that's why I did not want to be part of it in the first place. However, the more I watch those videos, the more I feel it's true. Some of these situations he talks about, I've experienced the same. High-pride, high-anger, unspoken rules, manipulation: ego-stuff.

  • Treat people lower in the rank well: it's good for the conscience, they spread good words about you, and they could be above you one day
  • Don't be the first one to attack someone else (even if they're not there): one day it could be you others are talking about, and they might remember how aggressive you were in pursuing the punishment of others

Funny quote:

Dad: you know I was framed
Micahel: Yeah dad, I know that, but you weren't framed because you were a doctor or a lawyer or a priest...

Edit:

There's more, that channel's a treasure trove for strategies and power dynamics:

  • Collect dirt on those who could damage you: having dirt on someone is power, and they'll give you preferential treatment for keeping the dirt to yourself. In the mafia's case, they had dirt on the FBI director who, for decades, denied the existence of mafia (pretty crazy if you think about it)
  • Watch out for getting involved with the wrong women: Michael Franze's father had a sexual liaison with Marylin Monroe, and that attracted the ire of president JFK (what a bitch, BTW). This is a principle outined in PU as well: avoid flirting overtly with personal assistants, receptionists and marketing girls: some executives take it personally and as an encroachment on their territory (even if they're not having sex with them)
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