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View Diary: When I Stopped Rewarding My Son for Good Behavior (100 comments)

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  •  Don't tell kids a fairly tale. When you do the (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cynndara

    right thing, it means you will have to work harder and longer than most other people who take short cuts.  Our current world rewards those that take short cuts(don't kid them about that one) and sometimes it will look unfair but just remember the goal, to be a useful, kind and happy human being.  Taking those short cuts won't get you there even if it looks like it at the time.

    "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

    by lakehillsliberal on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 03:59:35 PM PST

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    •  I'm a Kantian, and a fan of duty. (0+ / 0-)

      I don't think I'll be telling my kids that good will redound to them from their good deeds through some magical force.

      •  It will be interesting if you can sell duty in (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cynndara

        the 21st century, didn't that disappear with the Charge of the Light Brigade.  

        "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

        by lakehillsliberal on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 04:39:20 PM PST

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        •  "Duty" is complicated in my book... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lakehillsliberal

          if it is all about conforming to external norms that you are not freely choosing to abide by but feel that you "must" regardless of how you really feel.  When duty conflicts with your gut, that seems a recipe for problems.

          Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

          by leftyparent on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 04:51:38 PM PST

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          •  Ah. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lakehillsliberal

            Whereas I think of duty, as doing what's right, regardless of personal return or what other people think should be done, which is really the same thing, since other people's esteem is a reward.

            •  Okay... that's a good clarification... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              lakehillsliberal

              of where we differ on this.  The movie critic Michael Medved, who I believe to consider himself a conservative, said that conservatives believe in doing your duty while liberals believe in following your heart.  I think it is an interesting framing, though over-simplified of course.

              Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

              by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 09:53:55 AM PST

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              •  I thinking that is giving conservatives too much (0+ / 0-)

                credit and liberals too little.  I guess I see the fundamental difference as being conservatives do what's right for themselves, their family and their country(emphasis on me , mine ,ours), liberals do what is right for we , us and sometimes them, in spite of the fact that it might not be the best result for me or mine.  Conservatives are inner directed and liberals are other directed.  

                "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

                by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:11:06 PM PST

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                •  That would certainly be a framing that gives... (0+ / 0-)

                  liberal more credit and conservatives less.  But I think there is truth there in "us and them" vs "just us" framing.  The first being more what I would call hierarchical (or patriarchal) and the later more egalitarian.

                  But I resonate with the duty vs heart dichotomy more than you do.  The former has to do with respecting external authority, while the latter, ones internal compass perhaps contributing equally to a group consensus.

                  Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

                  by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:32:44 PM PST

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                  •  I guess I define duty a little differently and (0+ / 0-)

                    perhaps that is the fundamental disagreement we have.  Duty is about sacrificing your own welfare(and maybe even that of your family) for the greater good.  I do not see that in the makeup of most conservatives.

                    "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

                    by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:43:03 PM PST

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      •  So you would agree on the Golden Rule... (1+ / 0-)
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        lakehillsliberal

        but not necessarily "what goes around comes around".

        Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

        by leftyparent on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 04:48:40 PM PST

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        •  I have never seen "what goes around comes (0+ / 0-)

          around" work in real life.  I was taught to follow the Golden Rule, because my father was a pragmatist. In his experience, it just seemed to work better.  Course, I can't answer for how it works if you don't know right from wrong, never had that luxury.  

          "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

          by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:29:20 PM PST

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          •  I use "what goes around..." along with the... (0+ / 0-)

            Golden Rule to guide my behavior.  The way I see it, we to a large degree "create our own reality" in how we interact with the world and expect the world to interact with us.  I have the expectation that people will be good and civil, and at least around me (at work, home, and in the other venues of my life) they generally are.

            Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

            by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:45:58 PM PST

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            •  You live in a better world than I do. People are (0+ / 0-)

              usually good and civil until something goes wrong and then they are not.  It is every man for himself especially in the corporate world.  You don't ever know someone until you see them in a crisis or an emergency, if they continue to live their principles then you know who and what they are made of.  The day to day stuff is window dressing.  

              "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

              by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:53:55 PM PST

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              •  Though I have worked for large corporations... (0+ / 0-)

                for the past 20 years, I have been careful to find jobs working for supervisors and on teams where the people seem to be professional and humanistic, and have been mostly successful in that effort.  Out of say a dozen bosses I have had, ten of them have been really good for me to work with and really appreciated my contribution.

                Part of my effort has been to do work that keeps me "below the radar" in lower stress jobs.  For that reason, though qualified, I have avoided management positions which I presume would put me in higher stress situations and require me to work longer hours.

                I think part of that success is bringing this expectation of candidness, and good and civil behavior to my interviews and to my work every day.  Perhaps I have not been hired by people who don't appreciate my world view, and that's been fine with me, though I have probably had to suffer some additional unemployment because of it.  Such are the trade offs I guess.

                Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

                by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 02:24:30 PM PST

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                •  Good strategy...and you may be in a field where (0+ / 0-)

                  that works well.  I have not been so fortunate.  I have seen people say and do things that would make your hair curl.  I have managed to avoid most of it but where I couldn't it has taken it's toll.  In the end, it is every man for himself in most situation's because people are just so frightened(especially today) and the one's that aren't are dangerous.   What I have not observed is people standing up in the face of tough opposition.  They just don't do it.  They will mostly go along to get along and tell themselves there was nothing they could do.  It is why bullying is so effect.  

                  "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

                  by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 02:37:21 PM PST

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                  •  So you have little control of the quality... (0+ / 0-)

                    and ethics of the people you work for?  You are in a business where all the power is with the people who are soliciting your work, and little choice on you own behalf?  The agreement you have with those that employ you does not put you in the position of having any voice or power to change the situation for the better?

                    Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

                    by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 03:23:31 PM PST

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                    •  People who have control have no responsibilities (0+ / 0-)

                      they care about, they set themselves to walk away at a moment's notice.  You want to teach your children something important, teach them that.

                      "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

                      by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 03:58:55 PM PST

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                      •  That sounds like a pretty bad envionment!... (0+ / 0-)

                        Not sure what more to say.

                        Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

                        by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 04:35:29 PM PST

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                        •  It wasn't until it was. Long story but the (0+ / 0-)

                          long and short of it, is that the business world as practiced in this country is a heartless place, expecting anything else is to set yourself up to be disappointed.  

                          "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

                          by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 04:48:28 PM PST

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                          •  That has been your experience... (0+ / 0-)

                            and I know what you are talking about and have been in those situations as well.  But for the record not all of the business world is heartless.  I have been in corporate environments that were very humanistic, though generally hierarchical.  

                            I think it really depends on the people at the top and who they bring in underneath them.  A humanistic and caring director, in the right environment that supports that, can bring in people for their team with that same energy and facilitate a really positive work environment.  I see it in my current corporate job.

                            So I would disagree with your blanket "the business world", but say instead "much".

                            Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

                            by leftyparent on Sun Nov 21, 2010 at 07:54:25 AM PST

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      •  Kant has this really ridiculous notion on being (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lakehillsliberal

        truly ethical requires that you not derive any mental benefit from your goodness such as feeling good about it. So I am not sure he should serve as an authority about ethics.

        Don't get me wrong, I think Kant is a genius. It is just his personality is a little too anal for him to accept hedonism.

        He who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.

        by Sophie Amrain on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 05:08:17 PM PST

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      •  The good that comes back to you (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lakehillsliberal, cynndara

        Comes back in the sense of happiness in your own mind and self.

        It's like I said - the problem comes when you start expecting something to come to you from elsewhere.

        Make your own happiness, by knowing that you have improved the world, even if it's only by a drop at a time.

        "An uprising of the reasonable is our only chance." - Keith Olbermann

        by Diogenes2008 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 05:38:20 PM PST

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    •  But I have found though hard at times... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Diogenes2008

      if feels good, feels empowering, to know that I consistently do the right thing.  It gives life real meaning and makes it more interesting in my book.

      Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

      by leftyparent on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 04:47:31 PM PST

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      •  I have found consistently doing the right thing (0+ / 0-)

        to be somewhat exhausting.  I learned early in life that doing the right thing has its own price and you have to be willing to pay it.  It is not a freebie and you do not always reap rewards from it(in any sense).  You do it because it is just who you are, and to do otherwise is to betray yourself and to give away a piece of your soul.  

        "When fascism comes to America, it'll be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

        by lakehillsliberal on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:36:31 PM PST

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        •  Very different world views are two... (0+ / 0-)

          thanks for candidly sharing yours.

          I also have a rule of thumb when deciding what I should do or what I ask others to do (particularly when working with say other volunteers in a community organization), which is to "give only what you can give freely".  To give more than that creates the expectation that you are due something in return.

          Ideally, I and all the people I interact with are giving of themselves freely, without the expectation of being "owed" something in return.

          Cooper Zale Los Angeles http://www.leftyparent.com

          by leftyparent on Sat Nov 20, 2010 at 01:51:31 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

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