Collaboration not competition is the way of life

https://slate.com/technology/2020/01/darwin-competition-collaboration-evolutionary-biology-climate-change.html

it’s survival of the best fitted, not fittest, ya morons.

“Fast forward a century and a half, and “survival of the fittest”—the expression social theorist Herbert Spencer coined to sum up Darwin’s thinking—is as much a cultural cliché as it is a scientific theory. Hell, your worst colleague at the office might even offer it as a justification for his one-upmanship. More than just a cliché, though, the supposed naturalness of competition has played a central role in substantiating the laissez-faire variety of capitalism the majority of the American political spectrum has championed for the past four or so decades. Indeed, any non-market-based solution to social issues usually falls prey to claims of utopianism, of ignoring the fundamental selfishness of the human species. Advocates for welfare programs, for instance, often run up against criticism that their policy proposals fail to understand to importance of “losing,” that they lessen the stakes of the competition innate to human social life. Similarly, collectively owned spaces or institutions (like communal land trusts or co-ops) are often presumed short-lived or inefficient, doomed to suffer the “tragedy of the commons” as the innate self-interest of each member leads to an overuse of collective resources—a thesis that has been debunked again and again since its first articulation by Garrett Hardin in 1968. To put it simply, we have let Darwinism set the horizon of possibility for human behavior. Competition has become a supposed basic feature of all life, something immutable,

“Yet new research from across various fields of study is throwing the putative scientific basis of this consensus into doubt. Mind you, there have always been people, scientists and otherwise, who conceived of life outside a Darwinian paradigm—the idea of evolutionary biology is and has been a conversation among a mostly white and male global elite. Yet, even within centers of institutional power, like universities in North America, competition’s position as the central force driving evolution has been seriously challenged recently. In fact, criticisms have been mounting at least since biologist Lynn Margulis began publishing in the late ’60s.”

blind men and elephants, naah… it’s worse 

blind men and elephants, naah… it’s worse
it’s more like people living at the bottom of their own private mineshaft,
gazing up at the flickers of light far above them,
like victorian families viewing daguerreotypes
projected by candle flame via an epidiascope.
Like this herbert…

​who obviously hasn’t read this ‘product’..​.

The Origins of Order – Stuart A. Kauffman – Oxford University …

https://global.oup.com › product › the-origins-of-order-9780195079517

​or maybe he has, but he certainly hasn’t read …
Systems of Survival: A Dialogue on the Moral Foundations of Commerce and Politics (1992) ISBN 0-679-74816-4
​or 

The Nature of Economies (2000) New York: Random House, The Modern Library. ISBN 0-679-60340-9

…or maybe he has, and does not acknowledge it. Aeon should be ashamed to publish essays without references.

Another mineshaft dweller

 in his own little academic bubble, 

lord of his tiny intellectual domain. 

Another seeker of the one system, 

the one theory, 

the one ring, 

the theory of everything. 

There are a hundred theories of everything 

and they all hold fragments of the true cross, 

and they are all right in some ways

 and sooo wrong in others.

What is it useful to believe right now, grasshopper? 

Does that make you happy?

​Still, you gorra larf innit?​

An homage for Lou Spartz, unsung hero of ‘stuff’

Lou Spartz, who passed away recently was an adventure playground pioneer, who introduced Simon  Nicholson to the idea of kids doing stuff with old stuff that was lying around. Simon , being an architecture student, coined a confusing and intellectually reified terminology , based on his good friend’s own moniker. This slight playful moment, has now, courtesy of an academic journal, become a rod (a stick, louspart1, in the jargon) with which to beat children who put garden canes in the fabric tray. Aieee! Back in the day, we just called it stuff. Stuff. Stuff lying around.

LostWorkshops1: why lying to children is a parental dutyand lying to consultancy clients is a crime

This workshop, drawing on the work of Lakoff and Johnson, Postman and Weingartner, Dunbar, Tsoukas, Miyami, Minkoff, Vespuigi, Cohen and Stewart, Maturana and Hegel explores the complex relationship between truth, solidarity, tribal bonding, decision-making, leadership and socialisation, and the limitations of consultation and evaluation.

In today’s complex world of true lies and false facts, where the internet is blah blah.

To book this workshop contact Plexity. For more information, please reread.

Scarfolk Books have asked me to point out that they are not sponsoring this workshop and apologise for the misleading flyers.

Local authorities dwelling sightless in Plato’s cave

ADSS get really grumpy…

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/sep/16/councils-unwittingly-helping-drug-gangs-recruit-children-inquiry-says

“Councils are unwittingly acting as “recruiting sergeants” for drug gangs by sending vulnerable children to care homes miles away from where they live, a parliamentary inquiry has found.

“Thousands of young people who are sent to children’s homes up to 100 miles (161km) from their homes are becoming magnets for paedophiles and gangs who use children to traffic drugs from inner-city areas to provincial towns, according to evidence sent to the all-party parliamentary group for runaway and missing children and adults.

“More than 70% of the 41 police forces that responded to the inquiry said placing children out of area increased their risk of exploitation, often resulting in them being coerced into going missing.”

ADSS spokesdroid grumpily hinted at ‘having words with’…

Rachel Dickinson, the president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services, said: “The suggestion in this report that local authorities are acting as ‘recruiting sergeants’ is wholly inappropriate and we are in dialogue with the report authors directly.”

Social workers would be struck dumb if they couldn’t use ‘inappwopwiate’ and ‘dialogue’ going forward…

If the ADSS had any understanding of networks, predator- prey interactions and autopoiesis, and

If they had any youth workers, and

If they listened to their youth workers

They could easily have seen this coming…

If you contract out your service delivery, you contract out your sensory apparatus.

You might think that monitoring is your sensory apparatus, but it don’ work like dat. Blakemore’s infamous experiments on blinded kittens (I know, don’t tell me, tell him) demonstrate that the visual system remains unformed if it isn’t able to autopoietically and cybernetically interact with the locomotor system. You can’t separate learning from doing as I said in 1995 in my Manifesto for Learning.

Play does not “build children”. This is awful drivel. Here’s a better slogan for you: THROUGH PLAY WE BECOME HUMAN.

“The Children’s Play Policy Forum believes that play is a powerful builder of happy, healthy, capable children. The benefits of play extend to families, communities and society.”

Believing it doesn’t make it true. This fatuous statement from people who have set themselves up as experts in the field flies in the face of established science. Yes, I know you’ll tell me it’s not aimed at scientists, it’s aimed at parents… well you must have a very low opinion of them, in that case. Simple is not the same as dumbed-down.

Play does not build children. This statement is:
…Unscientific
…. Grossly misleading
… Smacks of the worst sort of deterministic instrumentalism.

Play doesn’t do things to kids. Kids do things through play. Play is not something under external control, it is a process, a medium, if you must.

Children are not built like Lego or outside toilets.

Children become.

They are living, complex, emergent organisms.

That’s why I coined the phrase:

THROUGH PLAY WE BECOME HUMAN.

There are a number of implications within this simple-seeming sentence.

People seem to struggle with it. I’ve seen it mis-recalled as “play makes us human” which takes us back to the original misrepresentation of building not becoming.

THROUGH PLAY:
Play is not an external thing acting on children from outside, it is an inner urge, a propensity, a medium if you must, a process. So THROUGH PLAY.

WE BECOME:
Children are not alone (except when they are isolated, which is damaging. Humans are social primate mammals. They don’t develop as they should if they are deprived of company). They become who they are through interactions with other humans and with other becoming-humans. What emerges is shaped by a complex web of interactions and consequences (aspects of this are described by some as ‘socialisation’ and hey presto, with that single polysyllable we are back to the idea of things being done to them. Wrong.) Organisms are autopoietic, (googlit) they are self-creating, they emerge from interactions. It’s not predictable, it’s not controllable; at best it’s vaguely nudgeable, sometimes, a bit. Thus WE BECOME.

HUMAN:
Implying that some do not become human. Stuart Brown has studied psychopaths and murderers. They have one thing in common: play deprivation in childhood.

THROUGH PLAY WE BECOME HUMAN.