School and Public Shootings in the USA, a Solution

 

 

School and Public Shootings in the USA, a Solution

The Top Gun National Crises Troubleshooter, Retired

https://gadflyblog.com/tag/shootings

6/17/2018

Bullies

On examination of previous school and public shootings, the term “bullies” has come up possibly as a common denominator.  Given that “bullies” are at the root of the cause of these shootings, I hereby submit my proposal for mitigation of these shooting incidents in the USA.

 

At the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) in my past experience (18 years ago) and a local church (current to date), I have noticed that the number of persons developing the “only-child syndrome” in regard to the bully complex has increased.  The number of “only children has increased dramatically in the past twenty years. This could explain the increase in school violence, as more bully and more passive aggressive personalities would result in more conflict.

 

During my last several years at LLNL, I was often paired up with the new employees that were exhibiting this bully communication style, since I had been through the special training to transform an aggressive communicator to an assertive Communicator (for good reasons).   The basic tip-off that I was dealing with an only child bully was that, on meeting them the first time, or sometime after, they would hit me with a blast of criticism. Dr. Kevin Leman wrote a separate chapter in his latest book on the subject, titled The Lonely Only: Super Firstborn Only Children. [i] In it, he listed the Strengths and Weaknesses of Only Children. [ii]

Assertive communicators make very good team players and the basic group at LLNL could be termed a “task force to accomplish a mission.”  A synopsis of the methods used to transform the bullies to an assertive communicator is given below.

 

Proposal to Mitigate Public Shootings

 

Communication Styles

 

The pundits of communication have identified four styles of communication that pretty much describe all of our citizens.  They are identified by four different characteristics.

 

Passive Aggressive Submissive Assertive Aggressive
You win; I lose, but I will get you back You win; I lose You win; I win I win; you lose
Snake-in-the-grass Doormats Adults Tyrant
Loser to tyrant Child to adult Adult to adult Adult to child

Becoming a Passive Aggressive, Submissive or Aggressive communicator is a function of birth-order and environmental knowledge learned early in life (less than six years old).  Becoming an Assertive Communicator is a function of training and education.   A slight modification of this standard chart to accommodate the Bullies in our schools and society is as follows:

Passive Aggressive Submissive Assertive Aggressive
You win; I lose, but I will get you back You win; I lose You win; I win I win; you lose
Snakes in the Grass Child to adult Adult to adult Tyrant to child,  only child syndrome
Shooters Doormats Adults Bullies

 

At the LLNL, (in my past experience) dealing with bullies was a standard and common practice. LLNL is well known for allowing only the best and the brightest through the front door.  Academically, the firstborns in their family and only children or children raised as only children (functional only children) were typically at the top of their class in college, [iii] Therefore, LLNL was made up of personnel that were predominately in these two categories, and therefore it was not unusual for LLNL to have a significant number of bullies.  This situation was mitigated by having an on-contract professional communication specialist who conducted seminars at LLNL.  When a bully made themselves known to management, they were encouraged to attend these communication seminars.

 

The following could be called the Ten Commandments (Ten Guidelines) for communication.  The objective for all of society, including schools, is to become assertive communicators (You win; I win). 

 

Interpersonal Communication Techniques Explained [iv] 

“It  doesn’t matter how you became what you are; this is what works.Manuel J. Smith, Ph.D.

(1) Broken Record: A skill, by calm repetition – saying what you want over and over again – teaches persistence without you having to rehearse arguments or angry feelings beforehand, in order to be ‘up’ for dealing with others.

Effect: Allows you to feel comfortable in ignoring manipulative verbal side traps, argumentative baiting, irrelevant logic, while sticking to your desired point.

(2) Fogging: A skill that teaches acceptance of manipulative criticism by calmly acknowledging to your critic the probability that there may be some truth in what he says, yet allows you to remain your own judge of what you do.

Example: That’s true. I …”

Effect: Allows you to receive criticism comfortably without becoming anxious or defensive, while giving no reward to those using manipulative criticism.

(3) Free Information: A skill that teaches the recognition of simple cues given by a social partner in everyday conversation to indicate what is interesting or important to that person.

Effect: Allows you to feel less shy in entering into conversation while at the same time prompting social partners to talk more easily about themselves.

(4) Negative Assertion: A skill that teaches acceptance of your errors and faults (without having to apologize) by strongly and sympathetically agreeing with hostile or constructive criticism of your negative qualities.

Effect: Allows you to look more comfortably at negatives in your own behavior or personality without feeling defensive and anxious, resorting to denial of real error, while at the same time reducing our critic’s anger or hostility.

Example:You didn’t do too well in (criticism).” “You’re right. I wasn’t too smart in the way I handled that, was I?” “That was a dumb thing for me to do.” Use this technique in non-legal matters ONLY!

(5) Negative Inquiry: A skill that teaches the active prompting of criticism in order to use the information (if helpful) or exhaust it (if manipulative), while prompting your critic to be more assertive and less dependent on manipulative ploys.

 Effect: Allows you more comfortably to seek out criticism about yourself in close relationships while prompting the other person to express honest negative feelings and improve communication.

Example: “What was it about … that is wrong?”  “What was it that I … that was wrong?”

(6) Self-Disclosure: A skill that teaches the acceptance and initiation of discussion of both the positive and negative aspects of your personality, behavior, lifestyle intelligence, to enhance social communication and reduce manipulation.

Effect: Allows you comfortably to disclose aspects of yourself and your life that previously caused feelings of ignorance, anxiety, or guilt.”

Example: “I like …” or “I don’t like …”, etc.

(7) Workable compromise: In using your verbal assertive skills, it is practical, whenever you feel that your self-respect is not in question, to offer a workable compromise to the other person.  You can always bargain for your material goals unless the compromise affects your personal feelings of self-respect.  If the end goal involves a matter of your self-worth, however, there can be no compromise.

(8) Reflective or Active Listening

Reflective or active listening serves a couple of purposes.  1) The target summarizes or paraphrases what the verbal bully is saying and confirms their complaint or position.  2) The target is given time to think of their response.  This technique is something like counting to ten before returning the punch!  3) If the verbal bully is attacking with a question, repeat or rephrase the question, and then answer the question.  This technique also allows the target time to think before responding. This technique is sometimes used by politicians, only they may even go so far as to change the question to one they can answer!

(9) Expand Your Repertoire of Emotional Words

 

 

(10) Find or Organize a Group to Practice these New Communication Skills

 

11) Pass on Your New Communication Skills to Someone Else.

 

Discussion

 

The big question is: can these assertive communication techniques change the personalities of the aggressive bullies and the passive aggressive shooters? Will the aggressive and the passive aggressive use these techniques to advance their own agendas? An alternative would be to place the only children who tend to be aggressive in the same classes so they are matched with students of the same aggressive personalities. In the 1980’s, China enacted their “One Child Only” policy. That would mean that China is ahead of the USA in dealing with these aggressive personalities, as all the children in China would be only children. However, as Dr. Kevin Leman has observed, “When it comes to finding the perfect mate, only children are like vanilla ice cream—they go together with everything, except another only child.” [v] It looks like China has recognized this trend of incapability of two only children as mates and has enacted a new policy of two-child families. However, this policy will not produce the middle born peace-keepers and natural negotiators.

 

As purposed in an earlier letter, a task force could be assembled at a local church consisting of persons who have been members of the Explorers group for several years. This group could act as a pilot program for proof of principle and a problem-solving task force. My observation is that at least one of these members is an only child who has been through these assertive training programs, along with a much younger only child involved in the education system. Therefore, this mix of personalities should produce a successful task force.

[i] Dr. Kevin Leman, “The Birth Order Book” “Why you Are the Way You Are”, Pub. Revell, 2009, Chapter 7

[ii] Ibid p 147

[iii] Ibid

[iv] Manuel J. Smith, Ph.D., “When I say no, I feel guilty”, Bantam Books, 1975, pp 323-324

[v] http://drleman.com/

 

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We’ve got Trouble, Trouble, Trouble, Right Here in the USA, It Starts with “V” and that stands for “Visualization”

We’ve got Trouble, Trouble, Trouble, Right Here in the USA, It Starts with “V” and that stands for “Visualization” Ver. 1.1.0

The Philosopher

The Top Gun National Crises Troubleshooter, Retired

https://gadflyblog.com/tag/visualization

May 7, 2013, Revised 1/24/2018

The Making of a Troubleshooter

I was identified by my sergeant as a troubleshooter when I was 22 years old serving in the United States Air Force in the South Pacific as a flight-line jet engine mechanic.  My sergeant then assigned me to all the troubleshooting jobs and tasked me with giving a second opinion on the troubleshooting that others had performed when there were long wait times for parts.  I seemed to have the ability to visualize the processes that were involved in a system in these jet engines and visualized a solution.  Later in life, I used the same skills as a troubleshooter for the energy and defense departments at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.  It has always intrigued me why I had these skills and others did not.

Inherited Skills

An inheritance from my father and mother was my conclusion for these visualization skills.  My father was a doctor of veterinary medicine and my mother was also a college graduate and never went to bed without a book.  I was the youngest of eight children by my father and the last of four children by my mother.  My father was 51 years old when I was born and my mother was 39 years of age.  This theory gave validity to the idea of skills being inherited from our parents, a phenomenon easily observed in celebrity actors, musicians and public personalities.

DNA Passed Down to the Following Generations

We know that our DNA is passed down to our children and to their children.  We now know that our DNA changes as we learn new skills and knowledge.  The “improved” DNA is passed down through the generations.  Both of my parents were very well experienced in life with much improved DNA to pass down to me.  Thus, the children in these families receive different DNA as DNA is improved with life’s experiences and by learning.

Visualization a Learned Skill through our Environment

Lately I recalled my early childhood experience of listing to stories every Sunday evening, as the neighborhood kids and I were laid out in front of the floor model radio in our middle-class home, listening to “Gunsmoke,” “Johnny Dollar Insurance Investigator” and more.  As we listened to these stories, we visualized them in our minds, and I think this is where this visualization skill was developed.  Was it developed in many others?  Probably, but not many made it to the forefront of technology.  I can recall some of my classmates at about the second grade level talk about watching “Zorro” on the television. This would have been about 1952.  Our family did not have a television until I was in high school so I had more visualization training than some classmates did.  I recall conversations with others who grew up in this generation saying that “Gunsmoke” on the radio was much better than “Gunsmoke” on the television.  The visualizations we created in our own minds were better than what Hollywood had produced.

The High Tech World

I now believe it was this early training in visualization and inherited DNA that enabled me to visualize the processes of systems in the high-tech world as they were applied to physics and mechanical systems in a troubleshooting environment.

The Visualization-Design Process

When I was designing hardware for use in Physics Experiments, I would find a quiet place to sit back and visualize the design in my mind and then go to my Drawing Board and record the design that was in my mind.  This design process is significantly difference than creating a design one line at a time.  One other notable example for using this method of “Visualization-Design Process” was “Nikola Tesla (Serbian Cyrillic: Никола Тесла; 10 July 1856 – 7 January 1943) was a Serbian-American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, physicist, and futurist who is best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electricity supply system.” [i] It is reported that he would design his systems in his mind before he picked up his pencil and drew the design on paper. [ii] This visualization design process is similar to the experiences reported by Elon Musk CEO of Tesla Motors, commercial space program SpaceX. Freemont, California, a transplant to the USA from South Africa/Canada. [iii]  Is the USA in need of importing our visualization leaders from other countries?

Conclusion

The conclusion of this insight must be obvious. Let’s get back to reading our children stories from books and re-empower the radio stories for our children to listen to so that they can use their own visualization skills to envision the stories.  Let’s lose the television, video movies, video games, YouTube, and any other sources of distraction that gets in the way of visualization training of our children. We will end up with a much empowered group of adults capable of visualization, who are now an almost “lost generation” of visualization specialists.   This may take a few generations as it certainly looks like the passing of DNA from one generation to the next is also involved in the “Visualization Process”.

QED

[i] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nikola_Tesla/

[ii] http://shopPBS.org/, “Tesla, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE”, DVD, March-2017

[iii] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elon_Musk/

Negotiating a “Workable Compromise” The Solution to Living as Free Citizens in a Free Nation

Negotiating a “Workable Compromise ver. 1.3.1

The Solution to Living as Free Citizens in a Free Nation

The Top Gun National Troubleshooter, Retired

http://gadfly.com/tag/FDF2017

6/18/2017 (Father’s Day)

Copyright 2017

Warning

This is not going to be a short report on the solution to living free, as citizens, in a free country like the USA, but it is probably the most import report ever written concerning our freedom as citizens living in a free nation.

Introduction

Conflict will occur between citizens, as well as between citizens and authorities, in all situations imaginable in our towns, communities and cities of all sizes. It will even happen in music festivals, county fairs or at any other events where we are compressed into a small space. It is how we resolve these conflicts that determine if we are going to live as free citizens in this free country, or are regulated by rules, laws and law enforcers, resulting in the loss of our freedom as citizens of a free nation.

Qualifications of this Writer

What are the qualifications of this writer to address this issue of freedom for citizens within a free nation?

Innate and Environmental Knowledge

In other words, what skills, knowledge and abilities did I receive from my parents and ancestors, and what did I learn from growing up in a family with two college graduates for parents?  Birth position in the family often is a major factor in developing our personalities and the personality traits that go with learning from these relationships with our parents, siblings and the community in which we grow up. [i]

I was born last in a family of eight children, last of four children by my mother, who was a college graduate when less than three percent of women in the USA had college degrees.  I was raised in a small farming community and was known by the community as “Doc’s Kid.”  My father was a veterinarian and the director of the Quality Control Department at a local creamery.   He was also the County Health Inspector who inspected the milk producing dairy farms to ensure disease-free and healthy milk.  I was also mostly known as “The Inspector’s Kid,” even by my farming classmates.  In retirement, he was invited to be the Plant Health Inspector at a meat producing plant just outside of town.

Lessons Learned from my Father

As a young teenager, I accompanied my father on his inspections of the dairy farms.  On one occasion, as he was finishing up this inspection, he confronted the dairy producer within earshot.  My father told the dairyman, “Make sure the lids on the milk cans are on tight as water is leaking into them.”  In this time period, the milk was kept cool in a spring-fed pool of water until the milk truck arrived to pick up the milk.  The dairyman got the point; my father knew from laboratory analysis that he was watering down his milk to increase the volume of milk and increase his profit.  When we got back into the car my father said to me, “Always give them a way out.”

When my father was the Health Inspector at the local meat-producing plant, he brought to the attention of the meat producers that there was a health problem in the sausage producing line.  The managers of the plant did not agree with this inspection report.  The plant was required, by Congress, to have a meat inspector in their employment.  This gave the managers of the plant the option to hire and fire inspectors as needed to produce meat and make their profit margin acceptable.  My father was terminated as Health Inspector for this meat-producing plant.  My father said to me, “Always call it like you see it and you will never be wrong.
I applied this later in my career, as the Quality Control Inspector for the Superconductors being manufactured by a vendor for a large magnetic fusion test facility (MFTF) at The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore (LLNL), CA.  I found a length of conductor slightly out of specification for its content ratio of copper and superconducting material.  Since it was not too far out of specification, one of the overseeing engineers wanted me to “fudge” the numbers and pass the superconductor on to the assemble people.  “Call it like you see it and you will never be wrong.”  If you call it like someone else wants you to call it; you will be wrong every time. I have been in many situations as a troubleshooter and always followed my father’s instructions.

The Development of a Troubleshooter

It is the small things in life that put us on paths that we will follow all our lives.  When I was still on a tricycle, three of my sisters came home from out-of-state college to find out that their college funding was being terminated.  In those days, it was more important for men to go to college than women, and this kid on the tricycle became a priority for college.  My first generation college graduate parents did what a lot of, new to the middle class, parents do, and that is they had more kids than they could get through college and had to make the hard choice of who was going to college.  My father died my last semester in high school, and my five sisters were convinced that I was too stupid to go to college as I barely made it through high school.  This was true, except for in the subjects of math and science, where I excelled.  My science teacher lobbied for me to go to college and study physics, but I ended up leaving my Midwestern home and working in a saw mill on the Pacific coast.

After a year working in the saw mill, I joined the US Air Force. I graduated at the top of my class at Jet Engine Mechanic Training School and also later passed the exam to move up in grade with a perfect score, which was something that had never been accomplished before.  In fact, I was accused of cheating, but this charge was dismissed. I was assigned to the Small Gas Turbine Shop and was assigned to a trainer.  Small Gas Turbines were used to generate axillary electrical power (APU) for the fuel tankers, a.k.a. KC135’s. It refuels the B52 bombers – the largest bombers in the fleet – and was used extensively in LBJ’s War.

My trainer and I went out to one of these tankers and, when, at the flight deck, we approached the APU in the rear of the plane, he popped the lid off.  He gave me my instructions, “When you find out where the problem is the solution will be obvious. I’m going down here to take a nap. You wake me up if you need me” (There were two cots for the refueler’s to lie on during the refueling operations). This is the only training that I ever received in the art of troubleshooting.

This writer ended up in LBJ’s war in the South Pacific.  I prefer to use the name of the president who was promoting this war, as this puts the responsivity for the war where it belongs – on the Commander-in-Chief (another problem for another day).  I was assigned to a Material Transport Wing and we sent helicopters and aluminum caskets into South Vietnam. We left the helicopters there; the coffins were filled with the fallen and we sent them back to the USA to be buried by their families.   I was assigned to the Flight Line Jet Engine support group.  We had two shifts that worked a twelve-hour shift (noon to midnight and midnight to noon) for four days, then had three days off and then switched shift hours (this was necessary as it was too hot to sleep during the daylight hours and it gave us time to catch up on missed sleep when on the noon to midnight shift).

My sergeant observed that I had a special talent for troubleshooting the problems associated with the jet engines and I was often called on to give a second opinion on an engine waiting for parts to arrive from the states.  Arriving on shift at noon, my sergeant picked me up first thing.  We headed for a transport aircraft that the night crew had been troubleshooting all night without being able to identify the problem.  The sergeant explained to me the symptoms the engine was exhibiting.   When we reached the front of the aircraft, I told my sergeant “where the problem was and what the solution would be to fix the problem”.  We had that aircraft ready to take off in a couple of hours.

 On to College

At the end of my tour of duty, I headed off to college at a technical school, following my hands-on training as a jet engine mechanic.  College was a real shock as I had to learn things that I knew nothing about, like using a T-square and a drawing board, making two lines connect or be parallel to each other, how to use a slide rule to do multiplication and division problems, how to read and remember what I had read!  One summer, I was hired by the department to do the maintenance on the laboratory equipment and assist my metallurgical professor with the investigation of a phase change in a gold-lead alloy system.  This investigation had been going on for more than a few years without success.  I designed and built a compressing device that would mix the two elements together at different temperatures.  The phase change would be observed using an X-ray diffraction spectrometer.  Performing the mixing at lower temperatures, I noticed a change in color in the mixture.  Sure enough, this was the phase change we had been looking for.  Now with this additional indicator (the change in color), I could perform the experiments faster and get more data and higher resolution to the temperature of the phase change.  The temperature of the phase change was found to be within a few degrees Celsius.

Experience at LLNL

I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology, with minors in Physics and Metallurgy.  When I applied for a position at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), I found out that my metallurgical professor’s review stated that “I was the most advanced student to ever go through that college”.  I was accepted on the staff at LLNL and assigned to a group working to develop fusion energy as a new source of energy.  After about ten years with LLNL, I was working with the Superconducting Development Group to develop a new high field superconductor for a high field test facility (HFTF).  I was invited to lunch by the program manager and the lead engineer on this project.  They were discussing the manufacturing problems at the contractor’s production facility on the east coast.  I offered up my opinion: “Find out where the problem is and the solution will be obvious.”  I was told to pack my bags and go troubleshoot the problems associated with the manufacturing process for this new high field superconductor.

On reaching this production facility on the east coast and observing the production process, I soon identified where the problem was.  However, this production line had more than a few problems.  We shut the production line down and I returned to LLNL where we redesigned and built new equipment for most of the production line.  However, we had not yet addressed the problem that I first identified.  This is where I was first introduced to Adlerian Psychology (Birth-Order Psychology – more on this subject to come; stay tuned).  The lead engineer on this production line refused to acknowledge that the problem I had identified as “The Problem” was the actual problem.  From my studies in Adlerian Psychology, I found that one of the traits of a firstborn in a family is that they will develop leadership traits and one of the attributes of these leadership traits is that “they know they are right even when they are not.”[ii]  We were running out of funds and running out of conductors to process through this last sept in the production process.  I knew I had to take control of the situation.  On identifying the person in this facility with the expertise to solve this problem, I met with him in his office.  My position was this: “You find a solution to this problem and I will design, build and implement your solution.”  He did and I did, and we sent the conductors ready for the coil winder that I had already designed and built and we created a world record magnetic field across a 40-millimeter bore in the HFTF.  I received an award for “Performance, above and beyond the Call of Duty.

After about twenty-five years at LLNL, I had received many challenges and worked on several projects of national interest.  At LLNL, it seems there is always a national crisis that needs to be solved.  I had been working with a young female engineer from MIT.  There is an invisible sign above the doors to LLNL that states that “Only the Best of the Best Shall Pass through These Doors.”   She was definitely one of the best of the best in the nation.  She was the only child of two PhD engineers and had received an abundance of “innate skills, knowledge and abilities” from her parents and graduated at the top of her class at MIT.

Working with her was quite an experience and I advanced my knowledge of Adlerian Psychology.  We were first induced in “My Experimental Laboratory” by the lead engineer of our group.  I was seated on a chair in my lab and when I was introduced to her as her lab partner for her upcoming experiments, she jumped into giving me directions on how to proceed: “I want this over there and I want that over here!!!!”  After I picked myself up from the floor – as she literally blew me off my chair – I stood before her and stated, “I don’t want this over there, I want it here, and I don’t want that over here, I want it over there!!!”  She looked at our lead engineer and he stated, “See, he can do that too.”  Welcome to the Adlerian Psychology of only children (“I Want” is paramount to their communication style).

At LLNL, there are contract employees who are communication experts and they teach classes on communication skills and on conflict resolution and teamwork communications. With the filter on the entry door “The Best of the Best,” these communication instructors will never run out of students to teach. I have gone through some of these classes twice to try and get the hang of this “Assertive Communication Style,” a.k.a. “adult to adult” or “win-win” communication.  We often go into the workforce with the communication style we developed in our family of origin and from parents who were low on the communication learning curve.  Without retraining to an assertive style, we will take the communication style learned from our developing years in our families to the grave.  It takes the whole organization to retrain one of these aggressive communicators; a one-on-one attempt will result in them thrashing you into the ground (more on this subject to come).

The Most Important Task-Force Ever at LLNL

The organization worked to improve this young lady’s communication style to an assertive win-win style.  We worked together as a team of two for about four years.  I was called on to join a task-force that was forming up to solve the latest national crisis issue.  When I met with the team, I suggested that they bring my partner onto the task-force, as she was very intelligent and a good investigator.  A few weeks later she showed up as the leader of this task-force.  I found out later that it was standard procedure at LLNL to put an up-and-coming engineer in charge of a group and support them with more experienced personnel; in this way they teach the young, up and coming, how to lead and then they move up to leadership roles  in the organization.

We were on this task-force for about a year.  As mentioned previously, I was considered too stupid to go to college by my sisters and ended up in a hands-on environment rather than the mathematical environment that regular physics majors receive.  I later concluded that the visualization method of troubleshooting that I had used in my Air Force experience must have come to me as innate knowledge from my father.  I did nothing to achieve these visualization skills; they just came naturally.  There was a core group of about a dozen engineers and physicists on this task-force and hundreds of support personnel:  physicists, chemists, material scientists, computer modelers, etc.  When I wasn’t needed elsewhere, I spent my time in my lay-back chair with my feet on my desk and my hat pulled over my eyes.  This was the meditation routine that I developed or copied from others.  One day, I looked at an illustration on the website of the local college where I was improving on my physics education.  It was an “A-ha” moment.  I then realized where “The identified problem” was and what the physics for this phenomenon was. Writing up my findings and sending them to the program manager with my suggestion for further study, I was on hold for a few weeks.  Another experimental team addressed “The identified problem”, made the necessary changes and performed a successful mission accomplished test.  The task-force was dissolved.  It was the successful completion of this task-force that I earned the reputation as “The Top Gun National Troubleshooter.” This young MIT and now Stanford graduate engineer left LLNL to design toys for children.  She left with a review of my performance “She thought I was the nation’s secret weapon”.  End of discussion on this writer’s qualifications as a National Troubleshooter.  Q .E. D.

A Side Bar on Communication Styles

One of the task-force leaders came to my office a few weeks later and wanted to know how I solved the problem.  When I walked to my whiteboard to draw an illustration of the phenomena, he stated “I don’t want to see an illustration and I don’t want to hear anything about religion.” (I guess my reputation for relying on a higher power preceded me.) He proceeded to ask me questions in the Socratic style thinking that the right question would produce the best answer.  Some people are very visual and some people are very verbal; we could not even communicate with one another because of this extreme difference in skills.

The Firstborn Syndrome

Because of the sign over the entry doors to LLNL, only the best of the best are on staff at LLNL.  With this type of filter on the entry doors, the results are that most of the staff is either the only child or the firstborn child in their respective families and they have their distinctive communication styles (more on this subject to come).  For about ten years, I was a member of a Platform Speakers Club at LLNL. At one of our group meetings in a semi-large conference room that was fully packed with our club members, I had control of the podium and I asked the question, “How many in this room are the firstborn child in their family?” A show of hands indicated that everyone in this conference room was the firstborn in their family, except me.  I’m a member of a study group in a church called the Explorers; there are more people with PhDs in this class than one would normally find in a whole church body.  I asked a similar question in this group: “How many men in this class have and older brother?”  Ninety percent of the men raised their hand.  Although some of us had a brother that was ten to even sixteen years older, the profile still fit us.  I visited my old church and did a sample survey and found the same results (more on this subject to come).  The conclusion must be that firstborn brothers go into technical fields and the younger brothers go to church.  This Adlerian Psychology is really fascinating.

Communication Styles

The gurus of communication have identified four styles of communication that pretty much describes all of our citizens.  They are identified by four different characteristics.

Passive Aggressive Submissive Assertive Aggressive
You win; I lose, but I will get you back. You win; I lose You win; I win I win; you lose
Snake-in-the-grass Doormat Adults Tyrant
Loser to tyrant Child to adult Adult to adult Adult to child

Adlerian Psychology and Communication Styles

There are several different scenarios on how these communication styles are formed in our formative years in our family of origin.  Dr. Kevin Leman, Professor of Psychology, University of Arizona, Tucson, describes two different firstborn styles: compliant and controlling.   I would guess that these two different traits would fall into the submissive and aggressive categories of communications.  Falling back on Adlerian Psychology, my observations are that if a firstborn has a same sex sibling close in age, they will develop an aggressive communication style.  If a firstborn has an opposite sex sibling close in age, they will develop a compliant communication style.  There can be other factors involved, such as an alcoholic or drug-addicted parent.  Keep in mind that this is psychology and there are always exceptions and anomalies in the database. 

The younger same sex near sibling would likely develop a submissive communication style.  The opposite sex near sibling could well develop a firstborn personality.  On down the family birth order, there will be a mixture of middle born children.  The “True Middleborn” will be caught between a same sex near older sibling and a close same sex younger sibling.  These Middleborns will have to negotiate for their own personal space and act as a referee between their older and younger same sex sibling.  Therefore, they will grow into adulthood as negotiators and peace keepers. [iii]  Other combinations of Middleborn siblings is a mixed bag and too difficult to analyze or theorize.  The Lastborn of close in age siblings will develop a personality, skills and traits that will enable them to do well in marketplaces as sales persons or marketers taking advantage of their developed social skills.  Dr. Leman discusses the traits of all these different types of birth orders in great detail in his many books. [iv]

Personnel for Microcosm’s Security and the Nation’s Police Forces

 From these discussions and insight into personalities and traits of the different family birth order, could there be a solution to police abuse of our citizens?  Can these different birth orders provide guidance to jobs, the police beat and special assignments?  For instance, the true middle born will develop natural abilities in “Peace-Keeping and NegotiatingWorkable Compromises.” Therefore they are a natural fit for domestic interaction with our citizens.  Can the aggressive personalities be retrained to exhibit an assertive style of communication and the accompanying “attitude adjustment?” Certainly, the younger the officers, the more easily they would be able to make the adjustment to the assertive, win-win style.  Then there are police assignments that require a hard-nosed aggressive communication style, with people that need to be brought “under control”, where “Being in Control”  is the prominent trait of the Firstborn with a near (within five years) same sex younger sibling, making a perfect fit for this job assignment. [v]

Negotiating a “Workable Compromise

The first step in negotiating a workable compromise is to draw a line in the sand that represents your borderline that “works for you.”  Do not accept any compromise that does not work for you; other solutions to the conflict must be addressed to find a solution that works for all parties involved.  This is the basic concept to “Living as Free Citizens in a Free Nation.”   Q. E. D.

Case Study  

Microcosms

 There are microcosms of citizens coming together in close circumstances.  These microcosms can be used as test-beds to develop strategies that allow citizens to live free in a free nation.  There a several varieties of these events where citizens come together for a short period of time.  My one experience is with a music festival that meets yearly during the week of Father’s Day.  Some people come with tents, some come in small RV trailers, and some in large, home-sized RVs, and these people live together in a compact space for four days.

Co-existence of Compromiser’s and Rule Enforcers

This festival has as an organization with a seated volunteer board of directors who are responsible for all aspects of putting on this enormous music festival.  Talent contributors come from all across the country, as do the attendees.  This board of directors has chosen to use rules and rule enforcers to manage this large group of mostly rule-abiding attendees.  Even the fairgrounds where this festival is held have its own set of rules to follow.  Therein lies the challenge – can negotiating a workable compromise and rule enforcers coexist with each other?  My recent experience in this exact situation says no, they cannot coexist.  We can either have negotiators or enforcers, but we cannot have both at the same time if we want to live free in a free nation.

Festival Father’s Day 2017 

We had an anomaly, for this time of the year; a rain storm had hit this area with a vengeance.  This created a mud swamp where it is designated RV parking.  Several RVs got stuck in the mud and left deep ruts, even in the RV designated spot that I had specifically reserved six months earlier.  It gave me a great view overlooking the lake just past a public area with picnic tables.  One caveat of this designated RV parking space was that someone had gotten stuck in the mud at one end of the space and left deep ruts, now dry and hard, covering about 25 percent of the RV parking space.  All the RV spaces were marked with white lines and were adjacent to each other, both sideways and front to back.  I pulled the RV trailer right next to the line opposite the deep ruts and extended my awning and patio carpet just past the ruts.  My truck is an integral part of my rig, as a second refrigerator is in the truck and plugged into the RV trailer.  This means the truck needs to stay connected to the RV trailer, making it too long to fit in our designated parking spot while missing the deep ruts.  The RV spaces are outlined in white and I had to encroach on the RV parking spot in front of mine, but there was significant space for this RV to move back about three feet, at least at this time four days before the rest of the RVs showed up for the festival (I was attending the pre-festival Music Camp).  I knew this was going to result in an attempt to negotiate a workable compromise, so I did my best to position my patio close to the deep ruts.

Pre-Festival Music Camp

My dog and I arrived four days prior to the opening of the music festival and I attended a music camp for these four days.  The traffic in the RV park was very limited during this time, giving my dog room to run after being tied up on a leash all day.  He could not get enough of running free after spending all day under the RV trailer (as per festival rules).

The Festival Starts

On the first day of the festival, RVs started showing up and available real estate was disappearing.  Some of us RV campers paid for an electric hook-up and were in the designated parking areas.  Other RV campers parked at free will as space was available.   The RV that was designated to park in the spot where my truck had encroached showed up later than most and the opportunity for accommodating this situation with the deep ruts was getting thinner.  When this large RV showed up, most of the free spaces were taken and the RV park manager could not find a solution that would allow a fire truck access to all the RVs.

Attempt to Negotiate a Workable Compromise

We were in the process of coming up with alternatives when about a dozen uniformed security personal showed up at my RV. The first officer on the scene said “You’re not going to like this”.  They were bent on forcing me to accept a compromise that I already had decided would not work for me.  In fact, their head of security showed up and designated me as a “rule breaker” and said that “if I broke one rule, I probably broke other rules as well”. He asked me if my dog was on a leash (a festival grounds rule).  I informed him that the dog was in plain sight and he could see for himself if my dog was on a leash.  I was very upset that he had affixed a label to me.  Affixing a label on someone or group of persons is the first step in dehumanizing them and then they are deprived of their human rights and, in the USA, deprived of their rights under the Constitution of the USA.  I explained to him what a “red herring” is.  “One is on their way to accomplishing their objective when a red herring swims by and instead of staying focused on the objective they chase after the red herring.”  I then pointed out to him that he had brought a red herring to this discussion.  One alternative that was not discussed was filling up the ruts with dirt and making this RV space completely usable.  If each of those dozen security officers came with a bucket of dirt, the situation would have been resolved to everyone’s satisfaction.  Workable compromise negotiations came to a standstill on the arrival of the security personnel.  My brain was now traumatized; on reflection, after the fact, I have thought of other options that I could have come up with to facilitate the workable compromise.  This incident has led me to the conclusion that Negotiators and Rule Enforcers cannot coexist; they are mutually exclusive.

Change in Plans

I now considered my options.  This security team was bent on forcing me to accept a compromise that I already had established would not work for me.  The first rule of negotiating a workable compromise is: “Don’t be forced into accepting a compromise that does not work for you!”  My dog was exhibiting signs of depression. He had been tied up for the last four days according to festival rules and he had no place to run free or socialize with other canines.  He was not allowed to accompany me to class, to lunch or to the audience area of the festival.  When I got back to see him at the RV, he was overjoyed to see me.  But now he is not eating and is camped under the RV trailer.  With strange security personnel all over our RV space, my dog was now traumatized.  I decided it was best to pack up and leave the festival.  I got my partner on the phone and she said she was still at home. I told her to stay there as we were coming home.  She was able to cancel her hotel reservations without a penalty due to a high demand for rooms.

Packing up the RV for Travel

As the officers of the security team were leaving in their golf cart, we confirmed that we were all war veterans.  I stated to them: “This was not the freedom that I fought a war for, and I do not think that any of the 5,000 fallen that I sent back to be buried by their families would agree that this is the freedom they died for.” I think the security team’s war veterans agreed to this statement.  The head of security wanted to make sure that I left, so he stationed two of his officers next to my truck to make sure I did not change my mind and that I removed my RV in a timely manner.   I have formed the habit of looking for the silver lining in all situations of this nature.  Here was an opportunity to interview two security officers and apply my knowledge of Adlerian Psychology to the situation at hand.  One of the officers was showing definite signs of an aggressive communication style, as he did not pass up any opportunity to show me that “he had authority over me and had the ability to cause me great pain.”  He was also prodding me to get my RV out of there in a timely manner.  The other officer presented himself in a helpful manner.  I therefore pointed a finger at the officer with the aggressive personality and told him that he was the firstborn in his family (I should have asked him how many years younger was his brother, as this situation produces the most aggressive personalities) and I told the other officer that he was a middle born in his family.  They both confirmed that I was right.  The aggressive officer continued to assert his authority and the middle born officer continued to seek peace.  I asked them why they were here supervising my withdrawal from this festival as I had volunteered to leave, and the aggressive one stated, “Because you pissed off the boss.”

I missed an opportunity to bring up the Nuremberg Trials of German Nazi officers who obeyed the commands of their demented leader rather than doing what they knew in their hearts was the right thing to do.  These dis-empowered officers were convicted of war crimes against humanity and were sent to the gallows.  It is this writer’s observation that it is the dis-empowered people in the world that cause the most pain and suffering for other people.

I got the RV trailer packed up and ready to go.  I was traumatized myself from this experience with Rule Enforcers and I didn’t use my RV pre-trip checklist, so did not turn off the hot water heater or the propane tanks. But we made it home without incident or only minor incidents.

Missing the festival was not a big loss as, at the last three festivals, we spent our time in camp listening to the music on the radio, going to the audience area only to buy CDs or ice cream.  Most of the performers dress like they just came out of the barn so there is no visual performance to be viewed!  The only group I had marked this year to go listen to and see was Dole Lawson, for I knew he would be dressed like a performing artist.

How Can We Improve the Management of this Festival?

I suggest we start with the requirement that to become or remain on the Board of Directors, Security Personnel and membership in this organization a person must produce a certificate of completion in an Assertive Communication Class and a Class on Negotiating Workable Compromises.  These two classes would be offered and taught by the organization’s contracted experts in the hands-on-methods of assertive communication and negotiating workable compromises

Our Citizens (Members) Developed Communication Style

Most of us have developed our communication style and skills from our family of origin from parents who had poor communication skills.  Others spent a good deal of their life communicating with children in an adult-to-child (aggressive) mode and controlling by rules.  They too must learn the adult-to-adult (assertive) communication style and how to negotiate a workable compromise.  Festivals like this could be used, as a microcosm of the nation, could produce, with these actions, a role model for the rest of the nation to follow.

Guidelines not Rules

My dog Buddy had been leashed up and not allowed to accompany me to any events at Music Camp for four days.  He was now depressed, not eating and traumatized from all the security personnel on our RV site.  I offered to leave the FDF, as a solution to the lack of space problem, Buddy was ecstatic to get back home and Run Free; he ran from one end of our property to the other as fast as he could go.  One of the dog owners in the RV lot, whose little canine was running free, off-leash, said that “He sees the rules as guidelines to be interpreted by each individual”.  I think he has the solution to living free in a free nation. Guidelines not rules or laws will eliminate the need for Rule Enforcers in the microcosms and Law Enforcers in the nation.  This may not be applicable in every situation, but it does eliminate the enforcer’s attitude that “I have power over you and I can bring pain into your life! “ They will no longer have this power over the citizens and they too must negotiate workable compromises.  Any hard and fast rule must be followed by the justification for that rule and these rules must be ratified by the membership of the organization. “How can we live free in this Free Nation”? By learning/enacting assertive communications, negotiating workable compromises and enacting, not rules/laws, but guidelines.

By Jove, I think we’ve got it. We now know how to live free as members, in microcosms and as citizens, in a free nation.    Q.E. D.

 

[i] http://drleman.com “The Birth Order Book”, Pub Revell, 2009

[ii] Dr. Kevin Leman, “The Firstborn Advantage”, Pub Revell 2008  p 69

[iii] Ibid I, p 149-165

[iv] http://drleman.com

[v] Ibid ii, p71

Ten Simple Codes of Conduct

Ten Simple Codes of Conduct Ver. 1.0.1

The Philosopher

https://gadflyblog.com/tag/codes-of-conduct/

5/16/2017

Copyright 2017

Introduction

These Ten Simple Codes of Conduct have been misinterpreted since they were first written over three thousand years ago.  They were meant to provide a new nation with an infrastructure that would make them an economic powerhouse and greater than their competitors that would want to take their land from them. These Ten Simple Codes of Conduct when followed, would produce a nation with a high national economic operating efficiency (NEOE), resulting in what would not be a continuing growing national debt as we (the USA) now have, but a national economic surplus.

These Ten Simple Codes of Conduct have been made into a religious symbol by labeling them as “The Ten Commandments” – commandments that must be followed under the authority of God.  Therefore, under a “separation of church and state” policy, a growing number of individuals and organizations think they should be removed from public property.  The Ten Commandments were never meant to be religious and this is probably the most disastrous action that could have been initiated onto these Ten Imperatives.  They were meant to develop a strong infrastructure in this new nation making them economically stronger than their competitors that would take their land from them.  It is the nation’s economic vitality that makes a nation strong, not its many weapons and troops on the ground.   Philosophically, the Ten Commandments are hypothetical Imperatives and not categorical imperatives.  A categorical imperative is something one does because it is the right thing to do.  A hypothetical imperative means there is a reward for following the imperative. German Philosopher, Immanuel Kant, of the eighteenth century, thought that there was only one categorical imperative, as he stated, “Act as if the maxim of thy action were to become by thy will a universal law of nature[i].    The reward for following the Ten Simple Codes of Conduct is that “we will live long in the land that has been given to us.” (Exodus 20:12) Thus, the Ten Simple Codes of Conduct are actually Ten Hypothetical Imperatives.

Two Ways to Enslave a Nation

“There are two ways to enslave a nation – with war and with debt.”
John Adams, second president of the USA

We are in an economic war with our international competitors and the nation that has the highest NEOE will own the other nation’s debt.  Theoretically, the interest on the national debt can grow to exceed our taxable gross national product (GDP) and the cost to operate our country.  In this case, we will have become slaves to the nation holding our national debt.  The Ten Simple Codes of Conduct were, and are meant to, form a strong national infrastructure and create a high NEOE, therefore, making us more competitive in the international economic war.  This is not by the will of a “higher power” but first year economic principles.  The lower a nation’s NEOE, the higher the national debt will be. The higher the nation’s NEOE, the lower the national debt will be, and there may even be a surplus in the budget.

Explanation of the Ten Simple Codes of Conduct [ii]

  1. You shall have no other gods before me: Would not any parent tell their children this same thing – that they are the ones responsible for their children’s well-being, so don’t seek advice or help from anyone else. There is a higher power who is the one with all the resources and He’s the one who is willing to give us the resources we need to live on this planet. Just as our parents gave us what we needed to live on this planet Earth, so does this higher power, a.k.a. the Creator of the Universe (CoU).
  2. Do not make yourself an idol: These instructions are to a people that are naturally very religious and they are going to find something to worship that is going to take up their time, energy and resources. This can be extrapolated to modern times to such things as: alcohol, tobacco, drugs, porn, gambling and many more things that can take control of our lives.  The Russian physiologist, Ivan Pavlov, showed us how easy it is to form a habit through conditioned response by rewarding ourselves for a certain behavior, a.k.a. “classical conditioning” [iii].
  3. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God: This has been interpreted for centuries as a verbal This cannot be a verbal activity; it has to be an action activity.   Do not intend to bring harm, discomfort or kill anyone in the name of God, a.k.a. the CoU.  This applies to a nation as well as to individuals that make up that nation.  This cannot be both verbal and action, because if it were both, someone might make a verbal remark that is taken by someone else as “taking God’s name in vain” and then they chose to bring discomfort or death to the accused, which is an action in God’s name, and therefore, misusing the name of God.   Therefore, verbal and action of the misuse of the name of God are mutually exclusive.Even the Apostle Peter did not understand that misusing the name of God is an action, as he verbally accused two capitalists of withholding funds to the Apostles’ social program after they had sold their land and only gave part of the capital gains to the Apostles. It appears both the husband and wife may have died from a heart attack after being accused of sinning against God by Peter for withholding part of the capital gains from the sale of their property and only contributing a portion of the proceeds to the Apostles’ social fund to take care of widows and those in need. [iv]  If this is the role model we are to follow, we are in “Deep Trouble” economically!
  4. Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy: The best reference I have seen on this subject states that “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.[v]   We need one day a week to recharge our batteries, and spend time with our families and friends.  Everyone needs to choose for themselves what day this will be for them.The latest investigations by this writer indicate that the seven-day week evolved from there being five stars that wandered (Planetes Asteres`), [vi] plus the sun and the moon, as Earth was thought to be the center of the universe. Nature has shown us many numbers in a Fibonacci Sequence (1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, etc. to infinity), such as the numbers of: spring flower petals, rings on a sea shell, layers on a pine cone, stars in galaxies, etc.  The number seven does not appear in any significance in nature!  Therefore, an eight-day week, consisting of a five-day work week and a three-day weekend, would allow for one day to resupply the home with life’s necessities, one day to perform all the required maintenance on the home and one day to spend with family and friends (the Sabbath day).  Or, take as many three-day holidays as you desire. [vii]
  5. Honor your father and your mother, that you might live long, in the land I’m giving you: We need to learn from our parents and respect their wisdom and knowledge.  They have seen things firsthand that we will never see.  “Living long in this land” is an economic reality.  These Ten Simple Codes of Conduct are classified as hypothetical imperatives – something one does because there is a reward for following the imperatives. This is not by the choice of a higher power it is first-year economics.   Any nation that follows these Ten Imperatives (not necessarily the USA) will develop a strong infrastructure and a high NEOE.   The result will be that they will be stronger economically than the nations that would like to take their land from them.Modern twenty-first century technology has shown that, as we develop our skills, knowledge and abilities, our DNA also changes and reflects these improvements. Therefore, our parents and ancestors passed down their skills, knowledge and abilities though their DNA and we will pass our improved DNA to our descendants. Respecting the sources of our DNA certainly speaks of honoring your father and mother and their ancestors.
  6. You shall not murder: We will not advance socially if we are killing each other.  Each of us can contribute to the economics of the nation and we need all of our productive citizens to operate efficiently.
  7. You shall not commit adultery: This is probably one of our nation’s most complicated issues.  One really needs to connect with this Personal Counselor, Personal Advisor, or Tour Guide through Life that the Representative of the Creator of the Universe (RoCoU), a.k.a. Jesus, sent to us at the Pentecost Festival after his ascension into His world in a form that was compliant for the journey.  Notice that these are descriptive terms for what the literature calls The Holy Spirit, or the Holy Ghost. These are known as “horse labels” (“this is a horse” or “this is an elephant”).  The former are known as “descriptive labels,” as they describe what the entity does.  To connect to this Personal Advisor, one only needs to make a decision to want to connect to the Advisor, and the Advisor will find you. Just be prepared to listen to this Advisor advising you (something like “a little birdie told me”). This is all you need to do. There are no ceremonies needed – not even a declaration of your decision, as this decision is personal, private and confidential information, and it is between you and this Personal Counselor.It should be noted that adultery does not specify monogamy; it does not rule out polygamy. Having more than one spouse of either sex earning an income would upset the economy due to the fundamental law of economics: supply and demand.  Having more than one income per household causes those with only one income in their household to have to hold down two jobs or find a way to supplement their income.  Sometimes this situation results from the “Have-Nots” preying on the assets of the “Haves” and feeling justified in doing so.  Civil law would judge these single income families as law-breakers for these activities resulting in the taxpayers paying for their room and board in a government-run penal facility, contributing in-turn to a decrease in our NEOE and an increase in our national debt. [viii]  Thus extra taxes would need to be leveled on multiple income families to equilibrate for the economic reality of supply and demand.
  1. You shall not steal: Theft causes a great inefficiency in our national economic operations. These activities results in there being too many policemen’s boots on the ground trying to manage these crimes and building more prisons to hold more prisoners. It is counterproductive to increasing our GDP and increases our national debt.  This could extrapolate to the point where more of our tax dollars are spent building prisons and taking care of inmates than tax dollars allocated to educating the next generations of GDP producers. Schools and prisons are in competition with each other for funds from the taxpayers. The more funds allocated to prisons, the less funds are allocated to schools that are producing our next generation of GDP producers.
  2. You shall not give false witness against thy neighbor: Courts are inherently inefficient; we should not waste our tax dollars on false reports of crimes committed.  It costs dollars to defend oneself against false charges, which may be the objective of the one making the false report, but we must think of the cost to the taxpayers as well as the effects on our NEOE.
  3. You shall not covet thy neighbor’s house or wife: Be content with what you have. Legal cost to manage greed can be staggering and the negative social issues that result from divorces are numerous and astounding.   These are all a drain on our NEOE and can have lasting effects on others in our society down to the next three or four generations.

Conclusion

The Ten Commandments have been misinterpreted since their inception.  We see their dramatization every year by Cecil B. De Mill’s presentation of The Ten Commandments and Charlton Heston’s portrayal of Moses coming down from Mount Saini with the these Ten Commandments written in stone.

Nobody likes to be commanded to do anything.  This is a loss of their freedom. Or is it?  My canine friend understands a number of commands, but these commands do not take away from his freedom. Instead, they provide for his safety and the safety of others.  Commands such as “stop,” “lead,” or “leave it” are all designed to provide for his safely in crossing streets and disengaging from other canines, felines, squirrels, etc.  So as it is with these Ten Simple Codes of Conduct – they are not given to take away from our freedom, but they are given to protect us from the invasion of our nation by a foreign competitor, by war or by debt, and the resulting loss of our freedom.
Q. E. D.

 

[i] Robert C. Solomon, “Introducing Philosophy”, 4th ed. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Pub. 1989, P 385

[ii], The Bible, NIV, “Exodus 20: 3-17

[iii] Classical Conditioning,  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classical_conditioning/

[iv] Peter, The Bible, “Acts of the Apostles” 5:1-11

[v] The Bible, NiV, “Mark 2:27”,

[vi] Greek astronomers, Sixth century BC,

[vii] The Philosopher, https://gadflyblog.com/tag/fibonacci/

[viii] https://anewparadigminchristianthinking.wordpress.com/tag/hypothetical-imperatives/

 

Firstborns, Only Children and the Later Born

Firstborns, Only Children and the Later Born Ver. 1.2.2

(Why to do they Always get Voted the Most Likely to Succeed in Medicine, Science and Politics?)

The Top Gun National Crises Troubleshooter, Retired

https://gadflyblog.com/tag/adlerian-psy/

http://thephilosopheronpolitics.wordpress.com/tag/adlerian-psy/

12/28/2015

Revised 2/8/2017

Copyright 2015

 

Introduction

The Firstborn and the Only Child have some common personality and skill packages that put them in good favor of being successful in medicine, science and politics.  The personality characteristics of the Only Child can somewhat be considered a super firstborn.  A short inventory of Doctors, Scientist, and Politicians reveals a significant population of Firstborn and Only Children.  Only children come in two varieties the Natural Only Child and the Functional Only Child.  The basic premises are that the Only Child grew up in their family of origin without the benefit of younger siblings to interact with.  Firstborns also come in different varieties: Firstborn, Firstborn Male, Firstborn Female and those who had at least five years separating them from their siblings.  Several of the past presidents of the USA were Functional Only Children as shown in the chart below.

Notable Leaders with Similar Families of Origin

Person of Interest Sibling Status[i] Leadership Roles
Abraham Lincoln Lost younger sibling at early age.  A functional only child. President of USA during Civil War
Theodore Roosevelt Lost younger brother at early age.  A functional only child. President of USA, Leader of The Rough Riders at San Juwan Hill.
Franklin D. Roosevelt Raised by mother/grandmother. A functionally only child President of USA for four terms.  Strengthened the US infrastructure.
Thomas Edison[ii] An only child Early American Inventor extraordinaire.
J. Edgar Hoover[iii] Older siblings greater than ten years.  A functional only child Head of the FBI for fifty years
Bill Clinton Raised up alone as a functional only child. President of the USA

 

 

George W. Bush Seven years between first son and second son President of the USA
Barak Obama Raised up alone as a functional only child. President of the USA

 

Vladimir Putin [iv] Natural only child Leader, Russia
Dr. Dobson[v] Natural only child Head of Focus on the Family
Teaching Pastor [vi] Natural only child Leader and teacher of a local church

Adlerian Psychology is the study of Birth-Order and it relationship to personality characteristics.  The foremost author in the late twentieth century and early twenty-first century is Dr. Kevin Leman.[vii]  Below is his chart of Firstborn personalities the benefits and handicaps.

Traits of a Firstborn[viii]

Trait Positive Aspects Negative Aspects
Perfectionist Does everything well Overly critical and dissatisfied with his own performance
Driven Ambitious, headed for success Always under great pressure
Organized Able to stay on top of everything No room in life for flexibility
Scholarly Able to think problems through and solve them Sometimes thinks too much; is overly serious
List Maker Get things done; knows where he’s going Boxes himself in; becomes a slave to his list
Logical Avoids pitfalls of compulsive behavior Knows he’s right even when he isn’t
Leader Plays an important part in his family, community, etc. Expected to do too much; always leaned on by others
Compliant Known as a good guy Known as an easy mark
Aggressive Gets ahead in life’ others look up to him Tends to be selfish and to disregard the feelings of others

 

Traits of Only Children [ix] (Super Firstborns)

Trait Positive Aspects Negative Aspects
Uncompromising Gets what they want Others do not get what they want
Communication Style “I want” this and “I want” that Others do not get what they want
Controlling Must be in control of all situations Others are left out of participating in the solutions
Must be the leader Natural take charge leaders Cannot follow some else’s lead

 

 

In charge of their life Knows where they are going Does not always know how to get where they want to go or accept nontraditional methods
Trusts in Tradition Steady guiding force of the proven whether successful or not; trusts the existing paradigm Not receptive to out-of-the-box thinking; will reject a new paradigm
Non-Negotiator They get what they want No experience in negotiating a “Workable Compromise” with another sibling
Successful against all odds “They can be anything they want to be” “Their mother or grandmother”. Good examples of “The Peter Principle” ( promoted above their capabilities)
Criticism Criticizes self for improvement to perfection Criticizes others.  “Judge and what every measure you use to judge, so shall you be judged.” [x]
Pays attention to the details Advantageous in Science, Engineering and Medicine Can get bogged down in the details striving for perfection
Long range planners Can make detailed plans for the future of an organization Gets committed to his plan and unwilling to change course.
Likes structure Scheduling/Planning/Structure is paramount Does not do well with spontaneous  opportunities
Prefers association with more mature adults Grew up alone with adults, therefore is comfortable with more mature adults Misses out on some play time with adults in their age group.
Approval seeking “Look what I have done by myself” Works better alone than with a group

 

Discussion

The largest difference between the Firstborn in the family and the Only-Child is their interaction and competition for their parent attention with their siblings.  The Firstborn with siblings is often put in charge of the younger siblings and develops leadership skills and sensitivity to the feelings of their siblings.  They are often responsible for organizing the games they will play together and setting the rules of the games.  The Firstborns will develop a parental role towards their younger siblings looking after them and protecting them.  This will usually manifest itself in a “Tell Assertive” communicative style where they usually assert themselves by telling other what to do.   It’s little wonder that this family pecking order is reestablished in the workplace.  The Only-Child misses out on these interactions with siblings; this could be a natural or a functional Only-Child (one who lost their siblings early in life or was isolated from them in different ways) and comes into the workforce with a individualistic communication style (It’s all about me).

To meet the demands of their younger siblings, the Firstborn must learn the art of “negotiating workable compromises”, the Only-Child is not afforded this opportunity.  The Only-Child has no competition for their parent’s attention and is often made to think they are the most important person on the planet (which from their parents point of view they are the most important person on the planet).  The Firstborn has this position of being the most important person on the planet for a short period of time until the second child is born.  They get read to sleep at night and spend time alone with their parents for this short time, than the competition arrives and their exclusive access to their parents change and the amount of time the parents can focus on each child changes.  This can be shown experimentally by examining the forensic evidence in the family photo album.  There one can find many photos of the Firstborn alone, but the rest of the siblings are photographed with “The Gang” with the exception of the Lastborn who gets some individual attention from their parents when their siblings have left the nest.

The Middleborn

The middle kids usually develop good negotiating skills, they have had to establish “Their Space” between an older sibling and a younger sibling and keeping the peace between the older and younger sibling especially if all are the same sex.  This negotiating skill will manifest itself in an “Ask Assertive” communication style where they learn how to maintain control and the peace by asking questions to assert themselves over their siblings and coworkers.  They often find themselves in middle management positions keeping the peace between those running the organization, the firstborns, and the lastborn workers.   The middle-born child often tries to get through live without being noticed, they are just part of “The Gang” [xi]

The Lastborn

The Lastborn grows up with almost everything laid out for them by their older siblings and parents and they come into the workforce looking to be directed by others in the workforce.  They often want their own ‘Freedom’ but once on their own find it difficult to manage their affairs to keep them solvent.  They tend to be more sociable than their older siblings and an easy mark for being taken advantage of in adulthood. [xii]   Probably from their social nature, the Sales Force seems to be disproportionately populated with the Lastborns in their family of origin, and comedians and philosophers are also well represented by the Lastborns (Anything to get out of doing real work).

Personal Experience in Adlerian Psychology

At a national science laboratory platform speakers club (LLNL), I once had the podium in an impromptu speaking session.  The meeting was held in a large conference room holding over a dozen people.  I asked the members of this speakers club how many of them were the firstborn in their families of origin?  All the people in the room, except me, raised their hand indicating they were the firstborns in their families.  I performed a similar experiment in a study group at a local church again with over a dozen members.  I asked how many men in this class had an older brother.  Ninety percent of the men raised their hands.  I then asked how many women in this class were the oldest in their family of origin; eighty percent of the men with older brothers came to class with their firstborn wives!  At another church where I had previously been a member and knew several men in this church, I asked if they had an older brother, their answer “yes” even the young preacher had an older brother.  Does this mean that ninety percent of men who are involved with the mission of a church have an older brother?  I asked the young preacher if his older brother went into the field of science, he replied in the affirmative.  Does this writer have an older brother?  “Yes”.  Ten years older, that would qualify this writer as a functional only child.  Is this writer involved with the mission of the church?  This is the same writer of the Blog: http://anewparadigminchristianthinking.wordpress.com/.

The Case of DNA

Does DNA play a role in our personality traits and skill packages?  In a recent program, on PBS, the latest developments of DNA science were disclosed that our DNA changes with our experience so as we learn new skills (and knowledge) our DNA changes to reflect these additions to our skill packages.  Therefore, when the parents, who are young and inexperienced, have their first children, the DNA passed down to these first children will be different than the DNA passed down to later children because the DNA of the parents have changed with their adult experiences.  All of the children in a family will then receive different skill packages from the same parents, depending on how more advanced and experienced their parents developed.

QED

[i] http://deadpresidents.tumblr.com/post/15457991558/which-presidents-were-the-oldest-child-the

[ii] PBS 2015

[iii] ibid

[iv] Frontline 01/2015

[v] Personal information

[vi] ibid

[vii] http://drleman.com

[viii] Dr. Kevin Leman, “The First Born Advantage” Revell pub., 2008, P 69

[ix] Personal observations well working with the USA’s Best of the Best at a national science Laboratory and a local church

[x] Jesus Matthew 7:1-5

[xi] http://drleman.com

[xii] Luke 15:11-24

Restructuring Social Security

Restructuring Social Security, Ver. 1.1.1

Jack E Johnston

https://gadflyblog.com/pension-plan
11/20/2014

Copyright 2014

The New Pension Plan for USA Citizens

The University of California (UC) probably has one of the best pension plan management in the country and should be used as a role model to restructure the Social Security Administration (SSA).   Breaking apart to its component parts results in a “Non-Profit, Academic Institution, managing a pension plan for its members”.  The present SSA uses new investor’s funds to pay unearned dividends to the matured investors.  The 401K and 403B plans put the pension plans in the hands of inexperienced investors.   My Stock Broker of many years, states “Stock brokers have the highest turnover rate of any profession.   A lot of people want to become Stock Brokers, but few are successful”.   The 401K-403B investors have only a few choices of investment provided by their employer, or they need to find a fund manager or manage their investments themselves.   There is a slim chance they will find a successful investment manager; there is also a slim chance of investing with a dishonest investor that steals their invested funds, and they themselves have a long learning curve to go through to be successful investors in their pension plans.

The Structure of the USA Pension Plan

The model of UC can be multiplied several times over using “non-profit, academic organization to manage pension plans for our citizens”.   With a choice of Academic organizations there will be competition between the academic organizations which should produce excellent rate of returns on investments for our citizens, especially if they can move their pension plan from one academic organization to another and the non-profit academic organization are allowed to collect a small management fee (1-3% prorated) of the funds invested for managing the pension funds, they will have even more incentive to produce excellent rate of returns on investments.  Rate of returns for the various academic organizations should be made available to the public.  This program results in smaller government, something that is supported in the conservative Congress.  The funds will be out of the control of the government, so legislators trying to balance a budget will not have access to the pension funds, this should produce long-term stability.

The Benefits of the Pension Plan for USA Citizens

The Budget will benefit as the nation will not have the expense of operating the SSA and the government will be only be in a subsidizing position resulting in a smaller government.  The transition from the present SSA system of paying the mature investors with new investor’s funds will probably have to be a negotiated transition and could be coordinated with the 401K and 403B programs.

The Non-profit, academic organization will produce income and will be able to lower the cost of admissions to their academic organization resulting in more educated citizens and greater tax dollars to the USA Government.