It’s the same way you teach your kids lessons when you want to drive a point home to them. Just last week we were at the store with our daughter. She’s been told to not set her phone down in public where it’s easy to get lost, stolen, or just forgotten. She set her phone down on a shelf to look at something, and about 5 seconds later we picked it up and put it in our pocket. She noticed it missing very soon after that, but being 10 she couldn’t decide how long it had been gone. So she want all around the store looking for it. This was a lesson she needed to learn, and it’s best if it’s at our hands. No long-term harm was done, and we got to teach a lesson.
It’s really the same thing when you do it in SQL. There are lessons you can teach people that will help things along, and as long as you’re not doing it in a hospital database (or other equally important system) where you could kill someone, you could be doing more good than harm.
Now don’t get me wrong. I’ve never personally taken place in such activities (cough cough), but I’ve seen it plenty of times and I’ve even seen it requested by management plenty of times. So why would management request something like this? Maybe the manager of your division wants to prove something to the manager of another division. Maybe your manager wants to prove something to a vendor. Things like this will make management get involved in things like this.
Anyway, I’m not saying do it and I’m not saying don’t do it -- I don’t want anybody blaming me for the outcome of such actions. You need to consider your own environment and the consequences of such things for yourself. I’m merely saying these tactics exist, they happen all the time, and they can be very effective -- or so I hear.