“Untouchable” people often get away with bad behaviour, and Australians have seen a number of these personality types within our government.
Untouchable people have upsides and downsides, so its worthwhile knowing how to recognise them in your life.
Eleanor Shakiba from the University of Sydney says that untouchables often lack a sense of guilt which allows them to engage in unscrupulous behaviour.
“They don’t worry and they operate in a ways that involve taking risks. They’re able to walk away from shameful situations and remain resilient”.
Having a friend, colleague or family member who is untouchable can often be exasperating, especially when they say or do outlandish things.
“It can be incredibly frustrating as (people living with untouchables) expect consequences for this type of inappropriate behaviour”, says Shakiba.
Untouchables are highly-functional, so we often see them in powerful positions of politics and business.
Author Emily Chantiri believes Immigration Minister Peter Dutton is almost untouchable. He has made inappropriate jokes about Pacific Island nations facing rising seas, and sent insulting text messages about a female journalist.
Despite this, Dutton still maintains an influential position with Federal Parliament.
Likewise, Labor leader Bill Shorten could be considered untouchable. He was cleared by a royal commission into trade union corruption and has received poor popularity ratings.
According to Emily Chantiri though, Shorten still enjoys the support of his party.
With untouchable people often being so prominent, its helpful to know how to recognise one in your own life.
The downsides about untouchable people are:
– They can often be perceived as insensitive or cold
– They are often offensive and don’t worry about the feelings of others
– They have an intolerance of different people’s capabilities
– They don’t like being challenged
Despite this, there are some positive aspects about untouchable people:
– They have a capability to withstand enormous amounts of pressure
– They are confident in their abilities, likely to succeed and will take on difficult tasks
– They can ignore criticism and don’t worry about outside opinions
– They speak their mind even in large groups of people, and can work fluidly in different social contexts