15. Prospect Theory-We are Loss

Prospect theory is a psychological idea that tries to define how we make decisions. When we are presented with different options which are risky, and cause us uncertainty we decide on the basis of losses not gains. We are more influenced by loss than by gains. For example if offered a way of increasing our pot of money most of us would choose to keep what we have. Rather than take the risk of increasing it. Prospect Theory

1. Certainty – most people will choose the more certain option rather that the riskier option even if that riskier option might give a better return.
2. Small probabilities – most of us ignore small probabilities even under the threat of loss.

3. Relative positioning – we compare ourselves to others. If we earn more than the other people we feel better. If we don’t we feel worse off. So even if we earn more, we perecive it to be less than others – so we feel worse off!
4. Loss aversion – we tend to focus on our losses rather than our gains!

Again it appears that we are built to avoid losses and more importantly to avoid feelings of pain. If the better option involves pain: we avoid the better option.

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14. Janet Sobel Ukranian Artist

Born in Ukraine in 1893 named Jennie Lechovsky from a Jewish family. Sobel escaped the violence of anti-Semitic policies & arrived in New York with her mother and three siblings in 1908, when she was 15.

Janet Sobel inventor of the “drip” technique most know to be characterised by the work of Jackson Pollock.
She began to experiment by drawing on top of her sons’ paintings. She was untrained so unencumbered by the restraints & training of classical art. She was fearless with nothing to lose.

Sobel created Milky Way (1945) two years before Pollock began experimenting with drip painting (Credit: Scala/MoMa)

Sobel created Milky Way in 1945 two years before Pollock began experimenting with drip painting. Pollock visited one of her exhibitions. He admitted that Sobels’s work “had made an impression on him”.

She lost her influence by following her husband into the suburbs unable to drive.The gallery which supported her closed and she developed an allergy to paints. She had to stop using paints and switched to crayons. End of the “drip” technique.

 

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13. Oubliettes

Europe or countries that reside in Western Europe! particularly the mainland are learning again about the cruelty of war. The atrocities which older generations experienced in World War II are played out in Ukraine. A buffer zone between enemies. Random killing of families trying to flee beseiged cities. The kiling of civilians and the raping of women standard tactics of modern warfare. Cruelty beyond cruelty.

To the priviledged and safe populations of the world: shocking and abhorent. Yet to the states in buffer zones, or conflict areas, a background to everyday life.

Yet it seems it has always been. Oubliettes – forgotten rooms like dungeons with stakes. Prisoners were thrown in to die. Forgotten and left to the rats. Ready for another prisoner. There was no thought to keeping them alive. Literally forgotten, starved, never to be seen again.

The cruelty of man – men – seems infinite, on many levels. Lest we forget we are at base animals. Created to survive and reproduce our brains don’t care about much else. Competitive, protective, self serving, ready to fight the other tribe. Mens’ behaviour dominates the ancient and the modern world.
Time for a change.

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12. Tractors Tennis Drug Running

Tractors Tennis Drug Running What is it with men and their behaviour?
What motivates men to take big risks? To sabotage themselves, their families, and their careers. They look as though they think they can get away with it. Yet with a logical eye getting caught seems inevitable.

How about boredom? A lack of excitement? Men are made to take risks which modern life doesn’t give them. Particularly urban modern life. These men are priviledged living in relative luxury. Diminishing risk and increasing boredom.

To alleviate this: take a risk where there is a possibility/certainty of getting caught. The higher the risk, the higher the high. If it works the excitement discharges a relief until the next time. Fail – eternal public humility and shame.
Worth it?

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11. A F**ked World? Part2

You could be forgiven for thinking that the world is going to hell in a hand cart. This phrase itself is 500 years old telling us that this isnt the first time in history the world’s inhabitants might have thought this.
People Are More Selfish
The internet, social media, appearance, narcissism. We are becoming a me me me culture. This is true but no the whole truth. We use these arguments not realising that for older generations there was not much me. Abuse, Authoritarianism, Incest, Child Abuse were all sanctioned in a culture of silence. Yes it is more me me me. But there is less silence. Younger generations aren’t going to tolerate the stupidy & ignorance of the state, authorities and parents. Parent centred to child centred.

Materialism True. We have never been so materialistic. We still haven’t quite got the link of the shop counter to the plastic in the ocean. Younger generations have more. Focused on recycling, sustainability, and reusing stuff, there is an attempt to slow down the shopping juggernaut started post war. It will take a while. But vintage is trendy recycling! The beginning of one quailty thing lasts longer than ten not so quality things. Still a way to go. Materialism is avoidance.

Feeling Good The big one – The biggest con. Difficult to argue against. But so flawed that under scrutiny the idea doesn’t hold up. Light/Dark, Hot/Cold Alive/Dead Happy/Unhappy. Existence, life and nature has a balance of both sides. Everywhere we look with open eyes we see both sides and many sides. Nothing is just good or just bad. But an interpretation of the mixture of both. Freud called death the aim of life. An avoidance of the ultimate end.

In summary this is the way or choice we have of viewing the world. This depends on our beginning, our own counter transference and mainly dumb luck how we can afford to see the world. Some lives have the bad luck of much adversity and hardship. Other lives the good luck of luxury and ease.
Let’s not assume which group sees the world as good or bad.

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10. A F**ked World? Part1

You could be forgiven for thinking that the world is going to hell in a hand cart. This phrase itself is 500 years old telling us that this isnt the first time in history the world’s inhabitants might have thought this.
Politics and the Future
Nobody knows what the future will hold. Not even politicians. The political system is a series of short term plans suiting the people in power. This is not the best way to plan. Plans are open to politics, so we need to have something bigger than government so that plans can remain unaffected by who has the power. We haven’t invented a system that can do this yet. Optimistically we all know this but are lost to how to move forward.

For all the movement in 21st Century living we are stuck. Stuck at a point in history were we all know a lot more globally than we ever have. We witness more that is wrong than any generation before us. So stuck is good: but painful.
You can plan for the future: but essentially if the future is not predictable then how can you effectively plan for it. The best you can do is make your best laid plans, be flexible, believe in your own resilience. You have survived so far. Humans do not seem able to be predicitve. We have to experience fear and pain, which creates a crisis, which motivates change. To remain unpredicitive we seek states of general non specific untargetted avoidance.

Education is taking a hit. Young persons realise that school has little to do with life. But does it matter? The whole point is to train you into jumping through hoops to a meaningless goal. This is the world of work with the added necessity of earning money. The pandemic was awful. A glimmer of hope is that people are beginning to realise this is a con. A materialistic busyness con. So education is becoming a work qualification, or something to get out of as soon as possible. Less to expand your mind to be able to critique the busyness world. The good news is that jobs can be created online bypassing education and places of work. There is more awareness about the world & what we are told through the media is not true. Again we don’t know where we can find the truth: and begin to think of many competing truths creating endless complexity.

This creates fear in us. With a sense of powerlessness, which we want to stop. But don’t know how. Stuck again.
Fear and stuckness. No wonder we want to avoid.
Go to Part2

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9. Carl Brashear Diver Trailblazer

Another life of discrimination and determination to succeed.      
Carl Brashear was the first African American and first amputee Master Diver in the U.S. Navy’s history. He was born on a sharecropper’s farm in rural Kentucky with little education, but rose through discrimination and bigotry to the highest Naval rank of Master Chief Petty Officer.

In 1996 due to an injury in a salvage operation he had to have his left leg amputated.
In comemoration of the man Oris created the Carl Brashear diver watch. Oris knocked it out of the park with this design. A great tribute!

 

 

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8. Couples Therapy: NATO & Russia

If NATO and Russia were in a good couple therapy! Both sides ignoring the fear of the other. Both threatened by the thinking of the other. As one couple said last week:
” …why and how do we think and feel so differently?….” Yet these two people find themselves together. Unable to understand the fear and anxiety of the other. NATO and Russia.

How did you first meet? All you countries were on the same side against Hitler’s Germany. What is the history of your relationship? Unsteady but at times manageable – then it began to go awry. What do you have in common? People and trade. What are your differences? One version might be that Russia sanctioned the deomocratisation of East Germany, and the Baltic states. Leaving Russia more exposed. NATO with the force of the US carried on with the world domination of democracy. Russia becoming more and more uneasy. Do the work on NATO understanding Russia’s point of view and vice versa.

What is ‘forgotten’ in therapy can lead to what is hurt, betrayed, or unresolved. The presenting past motivates us beyond our understanding. Once the past can be understood the present becomes inevitable. Then maybe the future can be more wisley thought of. Maybe ……….

 

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7. Forgotten War Anxiety

Anxiety, helplessness, & hopelessness are natural feelings to have with war on the doorstep. As humans we are set up to feel feelings to protect ourselves and those close to us. Fight, flight, & freeze are unconscious reactions for our survival. The threat we feel with a war hundreds of miles away is partly to do with modernity. The last war in Europe ended over 80 years ago.
To actually go through what the people of Ukraine are going through now has been “forgotten” in Europe. The images are awful in their ordinariness of completely destroying everyday lives.

Modernity has incubated us from the whole idea of death. But death is mercilessly consistently present. Modernity gives us the opportunity to turn away, and deny it. And so the politicians in encouraging buffer states to be a part of NATO: have ignored the threat in a state of denial. Upping the ante until the dam breaks.

Both idelogically driven. Democracy v. Dictatorship. The liberal ideologue that democracy is the besy way to live has caused much suffering and misery. Whatever side you belong to the whole point is that you cannot see the merits of the others point of view. Nevermind that research shows that many living in democracies want to be ruled by a dictatorship. Democracy is used as an economic weapon to subjugate people: who feel they gain little from the democractic system.
Both have benefits and failures that the other side cannot see.

 

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6. V Flowers Olympic Trailblazer

The Bobsleigh event is unusual in that it attracts athletes from other sporting disciplines. Vonetta Flowers was a sprinter and long jumper who switched to the Bobsleigh event and won a Winter Olympic
Gold medal in Salt Lake City in 2002.
The first woman team to win the event for the first time since 1932, when the Olympic bobsleigh organisers added a new event, the first ever women’s Bobsleigh competition.

As ever success is bred out of desire overcoming adversity. She failed several times to make the US Olympic track event teams. Undeterred she switch disciplines. Teaming up with experienced Bobsleigh driver Jill Bakken they were outsiders not seen as having a chance for medals let alone gold.

She became the first African American and the first black athlete from any country to win a gold medal at
a Winter Olympics.

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