How to Listen to Authoritarians (Without Losing Your Mind)
My psychiatrist told me that a study of Texas educators and employers showed that an unusually high percentage were SJs on the Myers-Briggs scale.  Seventy percent. Having spent most of my life in Texas, I found myself in the path, headed for an ongoing collision, often.
SJs see themselves as protectors and providers, which means they react quickly to information and expect their students and employees to follow rules and expectations (often blindly) and insist on structure (often with absolute rigidity). Authoritarians are the weeds in the SJ garden, extremely virulent and difficult to purge.
Image courtesy of the Nairaland Forum (http://www.nairaland.com/)
One, who hired me to manage his textbook stores, told me, “I am the boss. I can do whatever I want.” He took the coffee pot from the warmer and poured the contents on the floor. “I can order you to clean that up personally or order you to leave it there until it dries. I haven’t decided yet.” (He ordered me to clean it up personally. He would fire me if I delegated.)
Another, who hired me to run his publications, would invite employees into his office, then make us sit there while he read memos, made phone calls, and typed into his computer.
In every case, and there were many more (including educators), should anyone suggest caution, or that her decision might produce unintended consequences, they would shut the discussion down and issue a decree. Or, they would ask for input and then mock it.
An authoritarian anecdote
The bookstore owner interrupted a training session I was conducting and announced to the new employees, “Remember to ask of you’re unsure of anything. There are no stupid questions.” One employee asked, “Why do you give us ink pricing guns when we aren’t sure which books are new are used. Wouldn’t it be better to give us sticker guns so you can correct mistakes?”
He walked over to the employee, caught him in his glare, and said, “That’s the stupidest fucking question I ever heard.”
Authoritarians refuse to process facts
I learned two lessons from authoritarians. The first: Facts don’t exist.
Once an authoritarian conceives a course of action, reality changes. Every detail must conform to their vision and should anyone point out a fact that contradicts that vision, that conversation and the person who spoke it, ceases to exist. For all practical purposes they become non-persons. If required to acknowledge them in the future, they deserve no respect.
Only groveling will restore the non-person to the authoritarian’s sphere of recognition. Providing they weren’t already fired. Do not, under any circumstances, expect to work with an authoritarian and maintain any level of self-respect. 
The authoritarian teacher
Authoritarian teachers are just as bad. I taught college writing and design classes for more than twenty years, and I spent seven years with one of Texas’ first charter schools, developing their curriculum and media programs. If a student questioned any authoritarian teacher, he would immediately be labeled “troublemaker.”
I sat in a conference room with several charter school teachers reviewing student behavior. I had taught many of those students before. These so called troublemakers had the temerity to point out that their reading materials contradicted what the teacher said in the classroom, or that a teacher’s classroom policies may have shifted without the students being informed. In several cases they wanted the students suspended.
One teacher, convinced a student was violating the rules, followed him after school to record his behavior off school property. He found nothing wrong, but only because the student “must have seen me and kept his nose clean.” Another, convinced students were doing drugs in the bathroom (or worse), demanded that we install video recorders in the stalls so we could catch them.
When I pointed out that this was an extreme violation of the students’ privacy rights, not to mention that it might open the school to liability for recording underage female students in various stages of undress, he replied, “That’s not important. We have rule breakers here.”
Some students do pose discipline problems. I’ve been required to discipline many. Far too often, however, the students labeled as “troublemakers” were bright students who observed the facts disputed what the teachers reported to their classes.
You must be assimilated. Compliance is required.
My observations, and the bruises from too many collisions with SJ authoritarians, taught me the importance of Rule 2: If you can’t assimilate, you must pretend. Non-compliance is always punished.
For empirically-minded souls like me, this can be a difficult and humiliating process. But that’s the point. It isn’t enough to comply, those who wish to challenge must ultimately feel the pain of submission. We can’t be allowed to entertain subversive ideas. Sooner or later, we may forget our place and destabilize the authoritarian structures SJs have worked so hard to establish.
To fully comply, however, requires absolute clarity about how authoritarians operate. If we delude ourselves into thinking we can change their minds, or operate within the system to lessen their grip, we will discover we have targets on our backs.
Ask anyone in the Press who reports any facts that differ from Trump’s world view.
What happened to my employer who owned the bookstore chain? A new textbook chain launched, with a better business model, and put him out of business in three years. Why? Because he couldn’t adapt and fired anyone who tried to adapt to the competition. Even if it meant loosing money. That included firing me.
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 Or, according to David Keirsey, the Guardian Temperament.
 Ask Sean Spicer, who has already humiliated himself several times in front of a national audience. The only question to ask is whether or not he’s still capable of understanding how much self-respect he sacrificed.