I believe one of my better insights was the essential opposition of truth and power.

Truth and power aren't opposites; falsehood is the opposite of truth, and weakness the opposite of power.

But the old theorist is interested in social and cultural and psychological matters; that is, the affairs of humans. Humans can search for truth, and humans can search for power; it is these two human activities that are in opposition.

People who are going to get on in the world need power; and the higher their aspirations the more power they need (or want). This power implies the ability to get others to do as you wish, to have loyal followers, and to provide loyalty to hierarchical superiors. It implies playing by the rules, even if the rules require you to break some other rules. It implies focusing on the goal of success, it demands large amounts of drive, and it places the aspiring person in competition with other aspirants.

People who are searching for truth gradually learn of the obstacles impeding their search. The evidence is not to be trusted! You can't rely on anything. People may make mistakes, or lie. Records may be in error. Spin doctors may alter the evidence to suit political (i.e., power seeking) goals. All you can do is constantly search for data, make comparisons, analyze, interpret, and study some more. A truth seeker willingly cooperates with other truth seekers, because the goal is not to be "the person who discovered the truth" but the truth itself - a goal that is never perfectly achieved.

Those who seek power are always put in the way of bending the truth. Doesn't a salesman try to talk to a prospective customer from the point of view of selling the product? Doesn't a politician consider what will gain the most votes? Doesn't a diplomat seek to express the position as pleasantly as possible, taking advantage of ambiguity? Do any of these people welcome an investigative journalist?

Yet look at some fans trying to find "the best" in their field! The search for truth is a necessary adjunct to the search for quality. The never-ending disputes as to what is the best gizmo are evidence for the evanescence of truth. Yet the difficulty finding the truth makes the search that much more exciting. Woe be to the person who tries to impose leadership on such a quest. Finding the best is not a question of authority, it's a question of truth. Those who are not seeking the truth but merely some power can be quickly ostracized.

Trying to digest the "news" is an exercise in frustration for the truth seeker, because the dispensers of "information" are more interested in their position as a reporter or blogger or talking head or professor or politician, etc., than they are in the truth. So the truth seeker has to deal with an army of power seekers!

All of this makes perfect sense because the search for truth is conceptually opposed to the search for power, and vice versa. This understanding works equally well as a guide for cooperative truth seekers and for competitive power seekers.