Why people cheat…

Great selection from the book why we cheat in Delaney Place this morning…

“Cheating is not limited to humans; it has been documented throughout the living world, wherever there is competition for limited resources. … In an effort to better understand cheating, scientists have discovered that creativity, fear of loss and the observation of dishonest behavior can motivate cheating or make it more likely. … In nature, cheating has evolved as a way for organisms to gain advantage over others without incurring the cost of effort. …

“One major manifestation of social intelligence is the ability to deceive. Tactical deception is widespread among primates. Ethologist Hans Kummer of the University of Zurich vividly described cheating behavior in hamadryas baboons in Ethiopia: female juveniles mate with juvenile males while concealing their actions from the alpha male by hiding behind rocks. Primatologist Frans de Waal of Emory University has documented examples of deception by chimpanzees living in captivity. In 2004 psychologists Richard W. Byrne of the University of St. Andrews in Scotland and Nadia Corp, now at Keele University in England, showed that neocortex size predicts the degree to which primates practice deception. The bigger the neocortex in a species, the more individuals in that society use dishonest tactics for social manipulation.
“Humans are surprisingly quick to cheat when the circumstances are conducive. In 2008 behavioral economist Dan Ariely of Duke University and his colleagues described what happened when they asked college students to solve math puzzles for cash rewards. When the researchers changed the experimental conditions such that the students assumed the examiner could not detect cheating, the average self-reported test score rose significantly. The researchers determined that the scores were not inflated by a few students who cheated a lot but rather by many students cheating a little.

img_1182“Not everyone is equally likely to cheat, however. In 2011 Ariely and behavioral economist Francesca Gino of Harvard Business School reported that people who score higher on psychological tests of creativity are more apt to engage in dishonesty — a connection that is perhaps not surprising considering that creativity and tactical deception are both products of the neocortex. Yet Gino and Ariely believe the two are not just anatomically correlated but causally connected. They submit that creative individuals are better at self-deception: they come up with more inventive rationalizations for cheating as a way of making themselves feel better about doing it. … Ironically, the creativity and intelligence that we regard as distinctly human might have arisen alongside our ability to deceive. We are who we are because we cheat. …

“Cheating can breed more of the same if nothing puts a brake on the process. Once someone has overcome the initial barrier to cheating, subsequent hurdles to dishonest behavior may seem smaller and trivial to surmount. Ariely calls this response the ‘what the hell’ effect, as in ‘what the hell, I already blew my diet, so I may as well have the dessert.’ … Another way that cheating can spread is through copycat behavior. Seeing someone else cheat without apparent consequences strongly encourages others to do the same. … In 2011 psychologists Agata Blachnio and Malgorzata Weremko of Catholic University of Lublin in Poland described an experiment in which students took a spelling test in a room secretly fitted with a one-way mirror. A dictionary and a thesaurus were in the room, but the students were asked not to use them. Subjects were three times as likely to cheat when an assistant posing as a cheating student was also present. In fact, unchecked dishonesty can promote the perception that one must cheat to remain competitive.

“Such observations have led Ariely to refer to cheating as ‘infectious.’ … This kind of social contagion may help explain the high prevalence of cheating in relatively small groups of people. For example, 125 Harvard students were recently under investigation for cheating on the final examination in an introductory government course. (More than half these students were told to withdraw from school for up to a year as punishment.) It is statistically unlikely that nearly half the 279 students in that class are sociopaths given the low prevalence of sociopathy — about 3 percent in males and 1 percent in females. A more plausible explanation is contagion. The widespread bending of the rules probably led students to conclude that collaborating with other students was okay.”
Author: Ferric C. Fang and Arturo Casadevall
Title: “Why We Cheat”
Publisher: Scientific American Mind
Date: May/June 2013
Pages: 32-36

So, maybe when the leader of the Council claims to be a lawyer and is found out to be a fake lawyer with no lawyer credentials, she can just blame it on everyone else, just being creative, and evolution…

The Need to be Respected…

Another important marker of toxic organisations is the violation of every person’s need to be respected. Organisations today practice dis-respect at a frightening rate. And the moniker of excuse is usually: “they deserved it”… Does anyone deserve disrespect as a member of an organisation? Not ever, but many intensely insecure people confuse disagreement with disrespect. Many managers today only know how to answer back disagreement with disrespect. Because they neither value nor respect others, that is their only way to deal with conflict.  When it moves from dangerous to toxic is when they enlist others in the task.  The organisational abusers cannot cope with the truth so they put you on trial using the “thousand cut” method. Whereby they feign concern and drag you down by a thousand backhandedly negative comments behind your back.  The usual organisational tell-tale signs are phrases like:

  1. Did you hear what so-and-so said, was that stupid or what?
  2. What is wrong with him/her?
  3. Did you hear what they did? They are just trying to act superior to all of us…
  4. Oh, they always say that…

And when they feel ready to “go for the kill”, they put you on trial in your absence. They bring up an item at a meeting that wasn’t on the agenda, where you aren’t there, and ask all the members of the meeting what they think about this utter stupidity of whoever the target is today. They savage you on a very personal basis, and when confronted about it, they always throw it off on the decision of the group. Not me, it was the group that decided this…

Disrespect is something that you see all over. When a member of an organisation is given a public opportunity to ask a question of a leader of-and-with authority, you often see people making long-winded speeches about how important they are followed by some question designed to make them look like they know what they are doing. This is fundamental disrespect for both the fellow members of the audience and the person to whom the question is addressed. Anyone who engages in this sort of disrespect should be earmarked for removal from the organisation with immediate effect.

Fortunately, the people who live by disrespect always get found out, they always get put where they belong, eventually… However, in the interim you have to find a way to live with them. The best way forward with that:

  1. Stay as clear as possible of known disrespectors
  2. When you see it clearly confront them with the simple phrase: “I’m sorry but I will not accept your disrespect of me on:….”
  3. Whatever you do, don’t get in a debate with them, as they will try to convince you that their disrespect of you was both necessary and appropriate. Guess what, it never was and never will be…
  4. Lastly, remember, they lose a lot of sleep crafting their lies and disrespect, and you don’t…

Blessings all…

YankSnap 23rd June, Homelessness

So, we featured some of the normal day-to-day drivel, but the big issue was the BBC Panorama Programme on homelessness, the problem we “don’t have” according to most of the officers of the Council.  We all received a pre-show warning about it’s airing with the requisite attempts to show that the family featured here in Surrey Heath are peopole we actualy tried to help by putting them in accomodation that was so unsafe, it was uncivilised.  Claims that we “did our jobs” are pathetic in the extreme…

The family was not some immigrant family just trying to take the piss out of the social welfare system. They were a white, well educated, very British family who had a series of bad events and lost everything.  There but by the grace of God go all of us…  This was not some bizarre example to be dismissed on the other side of the country, this is our home, our people, and our problem.  Time to fix the problem…

Emotional cruelty to a child will become a crime???

chile emotionally abused

So, one of the headlines in the Times this morning was: “Emotional cruelty to a child will become a crime”…  What???  When??? And how is that going to work???  In the long string of parental alienation blogs here you can read the horrific story of the emotional abuse of my daughter Sydney by her mother and promoted by Surrey Social Services.  All I was ever guilty of was being a model father and giving everything I had to my daughter…  Surrey Social Services was so dire that in 2008, the then Secretary of State Ed Balls had to step in and fire everyone and take over its running. It’s simple, children need both parents, especially if they have the opportunity to to have them. My ex-wife just decided that she should be free to alienate my daughter from me , and severely emotionally abuse her, and Surrey Social Services not only endorsed it, they even paid for the Barrister to go into the High Court and demand it.

Outlaw emotional abuse of children? Surrey Social Services would have to be the first people to be put in jail over this new plan…  Here’s the article if you don’t want to look it up…

Tom Knowles
Last updated at 11:02AM, March 31 2014

Parents who starve their children of love and affection face being prosecuted in the criminal courts under a new law, it emerged last night. The imminent changes to child neglect laws, announced by Robert Buckland, Conservative MP for South Swindon, will make extreme emotional cruelty a crime for the first time, alongside physical and sexual abuse as crimes against children.
The Government is set to introduce the change in the Queen’s Speech in early June, making it a crime to do anything that deliberately harms a child’s “physical, intellectual, emotional, social or behavioural development”.
Mr Buckland, a part-time judge who has been campaigning on the issue, said: “We’re talking here about children who very often end up as the subject of case reviews or in child protection situations where they’re taken into care, and we’re dealing very much with the upper end of the scale.
“But it seems to me, unless we modernise the law and take into account what we now know about the severe effects on children of psychological and emotional abuse, then we’re failing a whole range of children in our society.
“One and a half million children in the UK suffer from neglect. I think it’s time that the law was updated to offer even better protection for them.”
Government sources have confirmed to the BBC that the new law is likely to be in place before the next election, and could potentially be added as an extra clause to the Criminal Justice Bill going through Parliament.
Parents found guilty of emotional cruelty could face up to ten years in prison. The new offences could also include forcing a child to witness domestic violence, forcing degrading punishments on them or making them a scapegoat.
Currently, an adult responsible for a child can be prosecuted only if he or she has deliberately assaulted, abandoned or exposed a child to suffering or injury to their health.
The Children and Young Persons Act 1933 is more than 80 years old, with certain sections dating back to 1868.
“If we ignore the growing body of scientific evidence that shows that this type of emotional, psychological course of conduct doesn’t affect children’s development then I think we’re failing to protect children adequately,” Mr Buckland said.
He added that prosecutors would still need to demonstrate that the abuse had passed the threshold of “significant harm” to the child.
The charity Action for Children has campaigned for three years for a “Cinderella Law” to make emotional neglect of children illegal.
Sir Tony Hawkhead, the charity’s chief executive, welcomed the promised change to the law as “a monumental step forward” for thousands of children suffering emotional abuse.
“I’ve met children who have been scapegoated in their families, constantly humiliated and made to feel unloved. The impact is devastating and can lead to life-long mental health problems and, in some cases, suicide,” said Sir Tony.
“We are one of the last countries in the Western world to recognise all forms of child abuse as a crime. Years of campaigning have been rewarded, the Government has listened and this law will change lives.”
A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: “The Government believes protecting children from harm is fundamental and that child cruelty is an abhorrent crime which should be punished.
“Every child should be able to grow up in a safe environment. We are considering ways the law can support this.”

Surrey Uncovered…

Just received the new issue of Surrey Uncovered, click here to pull down the pdf:  Surrey_Uncovered

Interesting to see that the Old Dean section of Surrey Heath consistently ranks as one of the worst areas in both Surrey and the UK on a wide range of social welfare of issues.  It is unfortunate that there are no churches or charities focused on ministering to and supporting these needs on the Old Dean.  There are however some people who work tirelessly to help the people on the Old Dean: John Looby at St. Vincent de Paul and our friends Julie & Richard Birt who host Golden Years every Friday…  Maybe those reading this will take the challenge and do something about a very broken part of our Borough…