Ask yourself this question, “Would you rather be loved…or feared?” – Sunny
Although, if you are a fan of gangster or mafia trivia, I probably didn’t need to specify that epic quote was from A Bronx Tal.
Inspired by the docu-series, Making of the Mob: New York taking over AMC, the tales of the American Mob are again being brought to the forefront of media and entertainment with ever-evolving fascination by a new generation. Ray Liotta, best known for his role as the notorious Henry Hill, narrates the sensationalized stories of the most scandalous mafia bosses and crime families in American history. The eight-part feature chronicles the rise and downfall of power and ego among the most ruthless and cunning.
With countless box office films, transforming into classics, which have highlighted well-organized successors, mixed with hit-television shows like HBO’s The Sopranos, and spawning such guilty pleasures like the highly-rated exploits of Growing of Gotti and VH1’s Mob Wives, it is safe to say mobsters have always generated huge buzz affecting pop culture and glamourizing a lifestyle.
From authentic wiseguys to the most corrupt drug lords, the line between villainous business and an admirable code of ethics if often blurred through societies various depictions. “The mob is an outstanding example of deviant behavior,” suggests clinical and political psychologist, Dr. Bart Rossi. Whether you believe these men to be cowardly street thugs or creators of vast and profitable empires, these names will live on in infamy.
#10 Frank Costello
#9 Vito Genovese
#8 Ben “Bugsy” Siegel
#7 Mickey Cohen
#6 Frank Lucas
#5 Charles ‘Lucky’ Luciano
#4 Al Capone
#3 Carlo Gambino
#2 Pablo Escobar
#1 John Gotti
According to Dr. Ross, “The leaders associated the use of intimidation, classic con man, and strong sociopathic skills in order to rule each thriving assembly. For this reason, chartering and stabilizing trust was especially tricky and a very risky endeavor.” On the other end of the spectrum, experts like Dr. Rossi explore how the convincing subordinates use denial, repression, or sublimation. From a psychological stand point, “How did they deal with the internal conflicts around murder, fraud, cheating, lies and fabrications?” questions Rossi. Were the head honchos really just insecure front men trapped in the wrong lifestyle?
Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects analyzed by Dr. Rossi would be with their consistent prowess and marked personality disorders, conceivably what each man would have been able to achieve had he lived a straight life and built a legalized, and real business of value. Thomas La Vecchia, president of X Factor Media, and self-proclaimed mafia trivia buff, also resourced evidence signaling similar to, or the exact qualities among today’s CEOs and A-Players, which drive his credible media train. These affirmed traits represent the force behind wealth and fortune.
After all, mobsters are one of the first truly effective, profitable, and high-income entrepreneurs in the traditional sense of the word! However, secrets revealed that tides turned quickly as more savage, bloodshed became a part of the deal. These top-tier “mafiosos” became NYC street assassins as they exterminated anyone who stood in their way from the root of all evil or paid off the so-called good-guys to stay quiet. An entire lifestyle emerged from the pitfalls of the structure of the depression and the potential levels of financial prosperity proved possible through connection or being a “made man”. With this authority came great responsibility as a very specific code of ethics continued to be carried out.
However, after a few decades of silent success, the American mafia revamped as a caricature of the very principles it was founded under. Heads inflated and a media sensation ensued. Seemingly invincible chief commanders managed to turn a reigning power based on hierarchy into a circus- a facade.
Perhaps Chazz Palminteri was right, “The saddest thing in life is wasted talent.”
-And in recent news, a release of a reformed associate breaks silence and makes headlines:
From the New York Times bestselling author of Blood and Honor and The Last Gangster—“one of the most respected crime reporters in the country” (60 Minutes)—comes the sure to be headline-making inside story of the Gotti and Gambino families, told from the unique viewpoint of notorious mob hit-man John Alite, a close associate of Junior Gotti who later testified against him.
In Gotti’s Rules, George Anastasia, a prize-winning reporter who spent over thirty years covering crime, offers a shocking and very rare glimpse into the Gotti family, witnessed up-close from former family insider John Alite, John Gotti Jr.’s longtime friend and protector. Until now, no one has given up the kind of personal details about the Gottis—including the legendary “Gotti Rules” of leadership—that Anastasia exposes here.