We are witnesses to the fact that dangerous people and their trade tend to increase at compound interest. When left unchecked, they soon saturate the rest of society, like yeast do to dough. Making those not affected to choke from fear and intimidation.
Those who find a way to breath easily and successfully cut dangerous people and their trade, do so, not by being dangerous themselves but simply by being smarter.
There is no doubt that a certain level of smartness is required to attain the reach and control a reasonable segment of society using threat and intimidation. So the thinking of anyone who wants to displace the prevailing order must be higher and smarter. Like Nick Fury revealed in Spiderman, Far from Home, upon discovery of the fact that Quinton Beck, the archenemy, was using illusion tech to fool the rest of the world.