General Remarks 2014
Social System Behavior
Since man is a social animal, for sure, practical knowledge about the “drama” of social behavior is of utmost importance to your own personal way of life. How you elect to behave in social settings is always your choice to make. Everything about the sociotechnical knowledge on this website is win-win. There is no zero-sum competition regarding what social systems can achieve. The size of the prosperity pie is never fixed.
Organizational behavior is common property. You contribute to the same social system dynamics that ricochets around the invisible, massless network of entangled human subconscious minds, continuously integrating and returning back to you in the arriving future. Your choices about how to behave in society are influenced by invariant human nature and invariant natural law. While appealing to natural law for dispensation or relief is a waste of time, you do have conscious-mind gatekeeper control of your personal copy of human nature embedded in your genome. Yes, you do have to listen to your unconscious mind, but you don’t have to do what it commands.
Unlimited Social System Achievement, Plan B
This website contains the concepts and tools for understanding and dealing with social behavior in a positive, constructive, and mutually-beneficial way. As theories are not battle-tested implementation instructions, the emphasis is on installing the generic fix, Plan B. It exists.
While the majority of this developed knowledge documented herein is available nowhere else, you will find much of the subject matter to be strangely familiar and self-evident. Decades of experience shows this expedition in learning to be more silence-breaking than “teaching.”
Why bother to learn? Simply that the developed, objective knowledge can be put to use and amazing benefits realized – immediately. The “Audition” gambit was provided so you could test that claim yourself. In many cases your subconscious validates the theses against your own experience while you are still reading about them. Every one can be field-tested in your local setting at your convenience. Nothing has to be taken on faith.
One of the most revolutionary concepts to grow out of our clinical experience is the growing recognition that innermost core of man’s nature – the deepest layers of his personality, the base of his ‘animal nature’ – is basically socialized, forward-moving, rational and realistic… He is realistically able to control himself, and he is incorrigibly socialized in his desires. There is no beast in man, there is only man in man. Carl Rogers
Respect for the challenge
In the sphere of social behavior, it’s best to give great credence to the longevity and deep roots of the Plan A social “challenge.” Organizational dysfunction (OD) has existed since the first opportunities for dysfunction to exist arose during the Bronze Age. While the Feudal system provided a preview of coming attractions, it was the Industrial Revolution that took pockets of OD and globalized the OD menace to civilization. Pandora’s Box of OD now remains open for business around the planet.
The primitive system-causes of organizational dysfunction (OD) are so deep in human nature, nothing is ever learned from the calamitous experience. It took less than two decades to surpass the “War to end all wars.” Following up, the governmental antics of the Vietnam War out-blundered the worst-run wars in human history.
In the last two centuries alone, over a quadrillion dollars of efforts have been incinerated in failed attempts to fix the OD Plan A menace to survival of our species. It was in 2013 when the Plan B fix of OD was finally established and proven. Realized benefits intact, it has since matured into the positive reciprocity stage. It gets better by itself. People in Plan B, living the contrast, have no interest in a return to Plan A.
The paramount driver of Plan A is the unfiltered compulsion for the top level in the pecking order to maximize the difference between top and bottom levels. As the prime mover of Plan A, it is the difference, not the amounts, that is important. The instinct of domination to increase differentials is sufficient, by itself, to launch Plan A. It is amplified by a fundamentally wrong assumption that granted authority is equivalent to the “power” to advance their organization. In demonstrable fact, authority has no relationship to positive power, while everyone, with authority or not, has negative power.
In Plan B, the instinct of domination is quarantined while the instinct of workmanship towards common, socially-beneficial goals is promoted. The focus on system performance levels the playing field. It is an equal-opportunity condition with the best performers receiving the most social esteem. Social distinctions are neutralized under high performance conditions. Credentials mean nothing.
Knowing that Plan B and only Plan B could have built the great pyramids, the Pharaohs wanted their vehicle to the afterlife more than local thrills from dominating the population. Knowing that Plan B and only Plan B could have built the first atomic bomb: knowing that Plan B and only Plan B could have put men on the moon in the 1960s, the Establishment has always known their Plan A can only flog their people into narrow channels of brain-off obedience. Plan A ideology cannot put men on the moon.
It makes little sense to enact laws and rules against organizational defensive routines, fancy footwork, and malaise. The equivalence of such laws are already in place, and they do not work. Chris Argyris (1991)
The consequences of OD
Much was written about rule-based OD after the civil war. Since the same problem exists today, we defer to the earlier accounts. Back then, observers experienced in both Plans were less afraid to tell the truth. The OD issue surfaced when the distinction between the ruling class and the producing class reached grotesque, shameful proportions.
The problem of today, as of yesterday and tomorrow, is how to establish collaboration between men. The laborer who is forced to sell his day’s labor today, or starve tomorrow, is not in equitable relations with the employer, who can wait to buy labor until starvation fixes the rates of wages and hours of time.
The labor “movement” is the natural effort of readjustment — an ever-continued attempt of organized laborers, so that they may withhold their labor until the diminished interest or profit or capital of the employer shall compel him to agree to such terms as shall be for the time measurably equitable. These are the forceful methods of all time and often trigger social earthquake, becoming destructive with the organized repression of inalienable rights.
Before the solution of labor unrest can be reached, the nature of the complaint must be understood. In 1877, the author, Arland D. Weeks, provided his diagnosis of the Plan A disease, which was given to the public in the form of an appeal; and, as it voices the legitimate complaint of the workforce today, it is here reproduced:
Primarily, the responsibility for strikes and outbreaks rests upon the wage-labor system, a system that encourages cunning above conscience; that robs the producer, and enriches the speculator; that makes the employer a despot, and the employee a slave —a system that shortens life, engenders disease, enfeebles the mind, corrupts the morals, and thus propagates misery, vice and crime.
“We complain, that whereas labor produces all the wealth of the world, the laborer receives only as much as will keep him in the poorest condition of life to which he can be crowded down, for the shortest number of years; that he makes civilization possible, and is reduced to barbarism, — building houses not to own them, carriages not to ride in them, growing food he may not eat, and weaving raiment he may not wear; that all of the arts and comforts that lift human life above the brute are present to tantalize, and not to encourage him; that steam, electricity, chemistry and productive machinery are competitors, and not co-operators, with him; that the conditions of his employment are debasing, and not elevating, —demoralizing, and not self-controlling; and that, whereas he is the most important factor, he is treated as the least; that his home is in the tenement houses, back-slums and alleys of the city, or the unhealthy lowlands of the suburbs; that his wife is forced from home, and his children from school; that he cannot, as a laborer, hope for thanks, honors or positions of trust; that he is practically debarred from representation or the public expression of his complaints. When at work, he belongs to the lower orders, and is continually under surveillance; when out of work, he is an outlaw, a tramp, —he is a man without the rights of manhood, —the pariah of society, homeless, in the deep significance of the term.
“The laborer’s complaint is not that brains rule, or that culture should lead, but that conscienceless cunning and miserly acquisitiveness are rewarded better than constructive ability or open-hearted integrity. We complain that culture busies itself upon immaterial subjects —conning the olden lore, not delving for the unrevealed treasures that lie embossed in humanity ; that learning interests itself with the science of things, and not with the science of men ; that philanthropy is the maudlin moan over the needs of the beasts, and a scoffer at the woes of humanity; that cats, dogs and horses are better cared for than the children of the poor ; that there are societies for the prevention of cruelty to animals, and none to prevent cruelty to humanity.”
We complain that our rulers, statesmen and orators have not attempted to engraft republican principles into our industrial system, and have forgotten or denied its underlying principles.
” We complain that statesmanship is narrow and partisan, the pulpit blind and ignorant, and the press the advertising channel of wealth; that the spirit and power of our institutions are being subverted from the high positions attempted by the Fathers, by gradual limitation of the power of the ballot, making elections less frequent, appointments more numerous, terms of office longer, by decrease of opportunity for the intelligent comprehension of the rapidly-increasing political duties, by the teachings of a false and pernicious system of political economy, that has no logical rule or law of action, or systematic arrangement of data, —a system that, up to this time, has taught that the production, and not the distribution, of wealth was the greatest factor in civilization.”
“We complain that the courts are administrators of estates, and not of justice; that the weight of wealth, and not of testimony, wins the case or decides the penalty.”
“We complain that the jurors are chosen from the traders and speculators, and not from the wage-laborers.
” We complain that the poor can be distressed by trustee processes, while the merchant and banker can be released from his indebtedness by bankruptcy; that we are wholly in the hands of our employers, —serfs of the mill, the workshop, and the mine —subjects of the railroad kings and the cotton lords, who know no divided allegiance.
“Such are a few of the complaints of labor; and, while we thus suffer, fortunes are accumulated, wealth and power are centralized.
“And while our masters are reveling in luxury, excelling the nobility of Europe in extravagant display, aping their manners and imitating their follies, we are becoming crowded down to the level of the “pauper” labor of the monarchical countries.”
These extremes of wealth and poverty are threatening the existence of the government In the light of these facts, we declare that there is an inevitable and irresistible conflict between the wage-system of labor and the republican system of government, —the wage-laborer attempting to save the government, and the capitalist class ignorantly attempting to subvert it.
The strike of the trainmen on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was the serving of a notice upon the people of this nation that wages could not be further reduced —a protest against robbery, a rebellion against starvation. The trainmen were under despotic control. To leave their employ was to become tramps, outlaws; to submit was to starve in serfdom. They knew that the power of the railroad oligarchy exceeded and superseded that of the national and State governments.
The railroad president is a railroad king, whose whim is law. He collects tithes by reducing wages as remorselessly as the Shah of Persia or the Sultan of Turkey, and, like them, is not amenable to any human power. He can discharge (banish) any employee without cause. He can prevent laborers from following their usual vocations. He can withhold their lawful wages. He can delay trial on a suit at law, and postpone judgment indefinitely. He can control legislative bodies, dictate legislation, subsidize the press, and corrupt the moral sense of the community. He can fix the price of freights, and thus command the food and fuel-supplies of the nation.
In his right hand he holds the government; in his left hand, the people. And this is called law and order —from which there is no appeal. It is war — war against the divine rights of humanity; war against the principles of our government. There is no mutuality of interests, no co-operative union of labor and capital. It is the iron heel of a soulless monopoly, crushing the manhood out of sovereign citizens. The subjects of this power, overworked, underpaid, underfed, and uneducated — are asked to be wiser than the statesmanship and culture of the nineteenth century.
In this war between the master and his vassal, property was destroyed, and men were prevented from taking the places of the strikers. Whoever is responsible for the cause is responsible for the effect. Men respect property only as it represents the public good, and hate it whenever it becomes typical of wrong and oppression. The crown, the Bastille, the slave auction-block and the lash earned the hate of those who destroyed them.
The bell that calls the weary, half-paid worker from his needed rest, taunts him with each resounding stroke. The machinery that renders his skill and time of less value to himself and more to his master, becomes the hated instrument of torture; its monotonous hum keeping time to his groans and curses. The mill, the mine, the foundry and the round-house stand like giants, ever ready to swallow up his substance.
With such feelings constantly present in the hearts of the laborers, unused to thought, disciplined only to act, what wonder that violence should spread like an epidemic from station to station, from mine to mine, and from factory to factory. What wonder that in this war life was destroyed? The man who, for his class, dares death for freedom’s sake, must needs look upon the man who takes his place as giving aid and comfort to the enemy. It is war, and cries of “peace, peace,” when there is no peace, will only lull the thoughtless into treacherous sleep.
The laborer and capitalist are living in war relations; and the sooner this fact is acknowledged, the better for the adjustment of differences. The mob can be put down for a while; but the spirit of hate that now centres upon the great monopolies will soon extend to the government that acts as their protector. Men love the government under which they can enjoy the largest prosperity, and hate that under which they are being crowded back into barbarism.
The existence of a million tramps is a standing threat against the stability of our institutions. They are the unorganized militia of incipient rebellion; and the attempt to suppress them by violent measures will fail in the nineteenth as well as it did in the sixteenth century.
Civilization is measured, not by the wealth, power or culture of the few, but by the quantity and quality of the opportunities possessed by the many. Civilization is common property. The institutions that enable the many to read and write and speak their native language amply and correctly are communistic institutions, inasmuch as the results are common property, even when the buildings are under private ownership. So, today, the advantages of transportation of persons or commodities by steam or the transmission of intelligence by electricity are of common benefit in the saving of time to all. The demand for their common or public ownership is based on the theory and fact that private ownership gives private control over vast public interests.
Economic equity demands the elimination of waste as a great step in the direction of the abolition of the poverty of the world. Whoever makes it possible to travel one thousand miles at an expense of ten days’, where it formerly cost thirty days’ wages, has conferred a benefit on the public; but to pay $200,000,000 to the organizer of this benefit is an extravagance the public cannot afford.
Under the present system of wages for laborers, and profits upon labor for capitalists, the natural tendency is toward the establishment of permanent classes; the wage-receiving class becoming more and more permanent, and hence less and less hopeful and intelligent, — continually forced to be smaller consumers of products, until their condition forces the reaction of bloody revolution, or degrades them to the coolie level. The theory and fact of the constant change of classes is based and founded on the accidents of fortune rather than upon scientific development.
Panics in trade, stagnation in industries, stock and all other gambling, intemperance, extravagance and imbecility of children, wars, convulsions of nature, and, to a certain extent, fires and strikes, all act as ministers of change from class to class. Social as well as physical upheavals always change the order of classes. The Negro, in rising from his chains, overturned private ownership in the black man’s public and political rights; and, in that overturning, the class of masters was changed.
The statement that the rich man of to-day may be the poor man of to-morrow, and that the poor man’s children may be the employers of the rich man’s progeny, is a confession that bankrupts, failures, panics, industrial stagnation, speculation, gambling, and wars are the proper methods by which wealth should be redistributed. As the labor problem is a question of civilization, and the movement of the laborers toward equity is not that individuals should be thereby made rich, while the many are made poor, but that wealth should be distributed in the process of production.
The demand of the laborer is for a change of conditions; and the solution of the problem will show that the extremes of wealth and poverty are curses, not benefits. The thoughtless opponent of the labor movement flies at once to the conclusion that the satisfying of the demands of the laborers would necessitate leveling down instead of leveling up. They say, “If all men are wealthy, there would be no motive for labor.” The changes which will be wrought in the future in the leveling-up process will reveal the wonderful change of motives.
The motives of the chattel-slave are buried with his chains; new ambitions are aroused, new hopes give strength to new demands; education, culture and opportunity are ever beckoning to new energy. The wage-worker is, by the law of necessity, an eye-servant, —as a rule, perhaps, rendering grudgingly his services; when he becomes an employer or co-operator, he works as never before. As the laborer receives more and more for his earnings, abolishing the need of overseers and middle-men, as well as the further use of capitalists and speculators, as worse than useless factors in society, more and more labor-saving machinery will be introduced, the hours of labor being continually decreased, and the buildings devoted to work so improved that labor shall become a blessing instead of a curse, a pleasure instead of a pain.” End of quote by Arland D. Weeks
What is most personal is most universal. Carl Rogers
Survival of the fittest
It doesn’t take much genius in the way of evidence-gathering and operating on discernable facts with formal logic to subscribe to Charles Darwin’s theories on evolution. He has his critics and detractors, to be sure, but observing species behavior over the time of context changes makes it clear that those social species that do not adapt to substantially altered and changing circumstances in the operational reality will, sooner or later, encounter a disturbance that seals its fate. As polar bears understand all too well, few principles of Nature are more secure than Her unshakable indifference. Not only is Nature indifferent to us personally, She is indifferent to our social systems as well.
While we see individuals changing their personal habits because of technology and its applications, the social system operating principles of Homo society have remained the same since the hunter/gatherer tribes of the Stone Age. Social conditioning today implants the same parables and mores of social living that Neanderthals would recognize as norms. As polar bears must adapt to climate change or go extinct, the social systems of Homo sapiens sapiens must adapt to the radically-changed social environment or become history. It’s not that we can’t live with organizational dysfunction, because we’re doing it. It’s that our offspring can’t afford it.
The first awful fact to face is that human nature is both invariant and lacking in an instinct for effective evolution of human social systems. While individuals can count on their instinct for survival to endure personal disturbances, as Robinson Crusoe did, the social system survival plan, encoded in the human genome, does not work above the tribal size. Forcing the tribal plan on larger-sized organizations is progressively counterproductive. The whole scheme of Big Kahuna and medicine man is overwhelmed.
The thrust of our life work and the focal point of this website is intelligent social system evolution towards operational prosperity in the environment of today. We believe human social systems, to survive, must adapt to the smart-phone age just like everything else that’s viable. We have found no instances where Nature has made an exception.
As presented above, the principles of tribal life that got Homo to this century of escalating social instability, Plan A, are no longer conducive to long-term survival of our species. In these times of radical change in context, perpetuating archaic social cultures does not work. On this website, the process of change in social operating principles from Plan A, blindly drifting towards extinction, over to a Darwinian Plan B navigating toward contemporary and future prosperity, is the aim. Both terms are used herein to describe the evolutionary social process that must take place if Homo is to survive as a species – no matter on what starship or on what planet Homo finds itself.
The master plan for transmuting a social system from failure to evolutionary success is gatekeeping the subconscious mind, wherein the obsolete template for social operations resides. You can’t change your instincts, for sure, but you can veto executing their mischief. The strategy relies on your other instincts, such as workmanship, social value, and fair play, to help gatekeep the dangerous instincts of compliance and domination. Yes, gatekeeping requires your conscious mind to be in hot standby during waking hours. Let your subconscious grab the helm and the opportunity is lost.
The paradigm of Western culture is that the essence of persons is dangerous; thus, they must be taught, guided, and controlled by those with superior authority. Carl Rogers
Building the platform
As introduced, the spotlight herein is on the drivers of social system behavior. The phenomena of social system dynamics consists of the manifest effects, the physical part of the system we can observe in action, and the three invisible causes of that action, the context:
- Invariant Human Nature, embedded in the 90% subconscious mind
- The laws of the universe, mathematical physics
- The network of entangled subconscious minds
The massless amalgam of natural law and human nature interact to direct the mechanisms of action that produce the social behaviors of Homo sapiens. To wish to have some tangible influence on the social transactions that impact our way of life, have some control, it is necessary to understand the invisible factors that together produce a context conducive to social action in our operational reality. As mentioned above, that requisite understanding requires considerable, protracted use of our 10% conscious minds – the labor of thinking. Ouch!!
It is the Man in the Middle (MitM) organizationally-neutral, who strives to have his various mental models of social behavior aligned with the operational reality. For him, misalignments invariably lead to undesirable consequences for him and his social context.
While everyone can benefit from the knowledge of social dynamics drivers, most of us cannot use the knowledge to change social behavior in positive ways. The MitM level, part of every hierarchy, is the only tier where social system dynamics knowledge can be used to steer social behavior in positive ways – attained by changing the context of operations. The MitM is the only vector by which healthy social system evolution can be injected into the bloodstream of the organization.
If the time comes when our culture tires of the endless homicidal feuds, despairs of the use of force and war as a means of bringing peace, becomes discontent with the half-lives that its members are living – only then will our culture seriously look for alternatives. Carl Rogers
Species Homo is just one of the many social species in the animal kingdom where incessant striving for social status determines the way of life of its individuals. The philosophy herein holds that the more you understand about the mechanisms of action of social systems, the more you can establish satisfactory and rewarding social relationships. This philosophy, part of Plan B, has been reduced to routine practice. It is putting knowledge of the invisible factors of social dynamics to work to material benefit. It is generic and fast-acting. Once assimilated, hooked on the benefits and the contrast to Plan A, you will use the ideology every day all day.
This is truly a “home” like no other for the “man in the middle,” a label you freely assigned to yourself — which is the ticket that got you here in the first place. The MitM condition depicted in the 1902 graphic is ubiquitous and timeless. It maps the span of influence of dysfunction. No other role in the organization has more power and control to benefit the organization’s future than the MitM.
The metamorphosis process derived and detailed on this website takes the workforce from being accomplices/victims to Plan A dysfunction to generating organizational prosperity, as only the workforce can. You are invited to visit live Plan B implementation sites, see the transmutation in motion, and measure its realized benefit package for yourself. Interview the MitM veterans. It is hyper-learning at its best. Payoffs begin immediately.
The Mentor Line
The mentor line is often a critical factor in solving important problems. There is a class of problem, typically a farrago, where the engine of cause, a system, operates above the mentor line, while its array of consequences manifests below the line where the mentors invest their genius. Organizational dysfunction (OD) is a member of that class. The engine that causes OD, the network of entangled, subconscious minds, acts well above the mentor line:
- One quadrillion dollars of effort to mitigate Plan A OD, spent over the last two centuries, directed toward addressing individual consequences, only made OD consequences worse. Now that Plan B is viable, the factors that prevented those working below the mentor line from solving the OD problem can be demonstrated. Of course, crisis response activity has no mitigating impact on the cause of the crisis.
- The sustaining solution to OD, Plan B, is aggressively rejected by those below the mentor line. This reaction, easy to demonstrate, destroys any wonder at why the quadrillion dollars was wasted. They tried to solve a serious problem to species survival that society did not want solved.
Working above the mentor line, where the causal system dwells, means there is no “help” to call on simply because there is no help to be had. You address the causal system using your own knowledge, cunning, and industry. You are solely responsible for progress. There is no one to blame for failure.
The mentor line is the extent of inquiry and investigation permitted by the social systems of the sciences, disciplines, specialties, unions, and academics. Every institution falls far short of systems-think territory. Just like foremanship, no institution can teach systems think.
The genuinely significant creation, whether an idea, or a work of art, or a scientific discovery, is most likely to be seen at first as erroneous, bad, or foolish. Later it may be seen as obvious, something self-evident to all. Only still later does it receive its final evaluation as a creative contribution. It seems clear no contemporary mortal can satisfactorily evaluate a creative product at the time it is formed, and this statement is increasingly true the greater the novelty of the creation. Carl Rogers