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Thread: Envious Monkeys/Envious Humans

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    Envious Monkeys/Envious Humans

    I always find a lot of illumination about human behavior in studies about our closest cousins.

    "Monkeys’ reaction to those who have more? Spite"

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0113173513.htm

    In my experience this is irrespective of whether there was "monkey business" involved in "getting more". :)

    That seems to be true with our some of our cousins as well.

    " Capuchin monkeys will yank on a rope to collapse a table that is holding a partner monkey's food. While chimpanzees collapse their partner's table only after direct personal affronts like theft, capuchins punish more often, even in cases where the other monkey merely had more food, according to a new study."

    ""Our study provides the first evidence of a non-human primate choosing to punish others simply because they have more," said Leimgruber, first author of the paper. "This sort of 'if I can't have it, no one can' response is consistent with psychological spite, a behavior previously believed unique to humans."


    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

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    Or it is sense of justice. In a group sharing needs to be equal, for survival of all members, therefore the group. Occupy Wall Street was organized by well fed middle class kids, to take away money from top one percent and give it to bottom one. Just because the current situation felt unjust to them. Well, and because camping in the middle of the city, protesting, drinking, smoking, comradery, free food, etc was fun too. The hunter gatherer in them. ;)
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

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    Look at this till the end.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meiU6TxysCg

    This is a story from my own personal experience, which I can only tell in short :

    I had a factory and employed some people. Some of them were more productive than the others. When I wanted to reward the more productive with some small benefits, the less productive got jealous. The situation became unworkable. I had to withdraw the benefits and then everybody was happy again. Even the less productive changed their behaviour and became more productive.
    It is amazing how destructive jealousy can be. Many people can't stand that somebody they know has more than them. They rather prefer that the group as a whole has less, than some others in the group have a bit more than them, even if those others deserve it.
    And I can tell you from that same personal experience that women are much more prone to jealousy than men.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    Look at this till the end.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meiU6TxysCg

    This is a story from my own personal experience, which I can only tell in short :

    I had a factory and employed some people. Some of them were more productive than the others. When I wanted to reward the more productive with some small benefits, the less productive got jealous. The situation became unworkable. I had to withdraw the benefits and then everybody was happy again. Even the less productive changed their behaviour and became more productive.
    It is amazing how destructive jealousy can be. Many people can't stand that somebody they know has more than them. They rather prefer that the group as a whole has less, than some others in the group have a bit more than them, even if those others deserve it.
    And I can tell you from that same personal experience that women are much more prone to jealousy than men.
    In the video the two monkeys perform the exact same task equally well, but get rewarded differently. The reaction is totally understandable whether it's monkeys or people. Believe me, I know whereof I speak on that one.

    Of course, if someone is cheating, as in situations like where Wall Street insiders have information that indicates they'd better sell certain instruments but turn around and peddle them to unsuspecting buyers, it's clearly different, and wanting to string them up is totally understandable. I finally saw the movie "Margin Call" which examines this situation. It's really gripping and beautifully acted. I recommend it.

    In the workplace situation you describe, the rewards went to the more productive and yet your workers still had a big problem with it. Instinctively, that doesn't make sense to me, at least for those who are more productive and better at their job, and yet the results seem to be borne out by some studies.
    https://hbr.org/1993/09/why-incentive-plans-cannot-work

    It seems a lot of people are really communal, and that relationships with other people trump everything else.

    "Rewards rupture relationships.
    Relationships among employees are often casualties of the scramble for rewards. As leaders of the Total Quality Management movement have emphasized, incentive programs, and the performance appraisal systems that accompany them, reduce the possibilities for cooperation. Peter R. Scholtes, senior management consultant at Joiner Associates Inc., put it starkly, “Everyone is pressuring the system for individual gain. No one is improving the system for collective gain. The system will inevitably crash.” Without teamwork, in other words, there can be no quality.

    The surest way to destroy cooperation and, therefore, organizational excellence, is to force people to compete for rewards or recognition or to rank them against each other. For each person who wins, there are many others who carry with them the feeling of having lost. And the more these awards are publicized through the use of memos, newsletters, and awards banquets, the more detrimental their impact can be. Furthermore, when employees compete for a limited number of incentives, they will most likely begin to see each other as obstacles to their own success. But the same result can occur with any use of rewards; introducing competition just makes a bad thing worse.


    Relationships between supervisors and subordinates can also collapse under the weight of incentives. Of course, the supervisor who punishes is about as welcome to employees as a glimpse of a police car in their rearview mirrors. But even the supervisor who rewards can produce some damaging reactions. For instance, employees may be tempted to conceal any problems they might be having and present themselves as infinitely competent to the manager in control of the money. Rather than ask for help—a prerequisite for optimal performance—they might opt instead for flattery, attempting to convince the manager that they have everything under control. Very few things threaten an organization as much as a hoard of incentive-driven individuals trying to curry favor with the incentive dispenser."


    This may be why women are particularly prone to not like incentive programs.

    As I said, it doesn't make sense to me. If I'm better at my job, more productive, I want to make more money than people who loaf around. If I don't get it, I'll go elsewhere or to another industry. There may also be differences by type of work environment. I think highly competitive people are not going to be working in a factory anyway. When you work basically on your own, i.e. own your own business, are a self-employed professional, or in an industry like the financial markets or advertising etc. things are different.

    The researchers also examined other factors like the fact that rewards don't encourage risk taking, and don't address the problems, etc. The article is a good read.

    As for the Wall Street protesters, don't even get me started. I had to pass their "encampment" a number of times. They were all high most of the time, and relieving themselves on the sidewalks. It was a public health hazard. There were your middle-class kids who want to transfer their dependence on mommy and daddy to the "government", and who, by the way, have no desire to share what they have to equal the field, but somehow think there will be resources enough that everyone will have what they have. There were also a lot of "permanent" protesters who were bused in, or just regular underclass welfare recipients, both of whom live off the public dole. Those people just want the "government" to support them the rest of their lives while they get high and screw around. Of course, it never occurs to them to consider where the "government" is going to get the money. Unsurprisingly, considering who some of them were, there were sexual assaults and rapes. The whole area was a toxic dump that took weeks to clean up when the cold drove the fragile darlings away.

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    it does not make sense to me either
    IMO jealousy is destructive to society
    yet modern western society doesn't go against it, it accepts jealousy as legitimit and rather tries to take away whatever may be the object of jealousy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post

    It seems a lot of people are really communal, and that relationships with other people trump everything else.
    Even if one can understand exactly how economy of supply and demand works, and how creative and smart people need to be financially appreciated, we still can't get away from this feelings of communal settings, the sharing, equality, justice, helping, jealousy, hatred of people who have more. As usually feelings tramp understanding.

    "Rewards rupture relationships.
    Relationships among employees are often casualties of the scramble for rewards. As leaders of the Total Quality Management movement have emphasized, incentive programs, and the performance appraisal systems that accompany them, reduce the possibilities for cooperation. Peter R. Scholtes, senior management consultant at Joiner Associates Inc., put it starkly, “Everyone is pressuring the system for individual gain. No one is improving the system for collective gain. The system will inevitably crash.” Without teamwork, in other words, there can be no quality.
    The surest way to destroy cooperation and, therefore, organizational excellence, is to force people to compete for rewards or recognition or to rank them against each other. For each person who wins, there are many others who carry with them the feeling of having lost. And the more these awards are publicized through the use of memos, newsletters, and awards banquets, the more detrimental their impact can be. Furthermore, when employees compete for a limited number of incentives, they will most likely begin to see each other as obstacles to their own success. But the same result can occur with any use of rewards; introducing competition just makes a bad thing worse.
    Relationships between supervisors and subordinates can also collapse under the weight of incentives. Of course, the supervisor who punishes is about as welcome to employees as a glimpse of a police car in their rearview mirrors. But even the supervisor who rewards can produce some damaging reactions. For instance, employees may be tempted to conceal any problems they might be having and present themselves as infinitely competent to the manager in control of the money. Rather than ask for help—a prerequisite for optimal performance—they might opt instead for flattery, attempting to convince the manager that they have everything under control. Very few things threaten an organization as much as a hoard of incentive-driven individuals trying to curry favor with the incentive dispenser."
    It seems that most important thing is making sure that nobody gets ahead, isn't it?


    As for the Wall Street protesters, don't even get me started. I had to pass their "encampment" a number of times. They were all high most of the time, and relieving themselves on the sidewalks. It was a public health hazard. There were your middle-class kids who want to transfer their dependence on mommy and daddy to the "government", and who, by the way, have no desire to share what they have to equal the field, but somehow think there will be resources enough that everyone will have what they have. There were also a lot of "permanent" protesters who were bused in, or just regular underclass welfare recipients, both of whom live off the public dole. Those people just want the "government" to support them the rest of their lives while they get high and screw around. Of course, it never occurs to them to consider where the "government" is going to get the money. Unsurprisingly, considering who some of them were, there were sexual assaults and rapes. The whole area was a toxic dump that took weeks to clean up when the cold drove the fragile darlings away.
    I'm so glad I missed this opportunity to know them better. ;)

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    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    Look at this till the end.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=meiU6TxysCg

    This is a story from my own personal experience, which I can only tell in short :

    I had a factory and employed some people. Some of them were more productive than the others. When I wanted to reward the more productive with some small benefits, the less productive got jealous. The situation became unworkable. I had to withdraw the benefits and then everybody was happy again. Even the less productive changed their behaviour and became more productive.
    It is amazing how destructive jealousy can be. Many people can't stand that somebody they know has more than them. They rather prefer that the group as a whole has less, than some others in the group have a bit more than them, even if those others deserve it.
    And I can tell you from that same personal experience that women are much more prone to jealousy than men.
    This video with babies and older children is also very interesting:


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    Quote Originally Posted by Tomenable View Post
    This video with babies and older children is also very interesting:

    this is intersting but not conclusive
    other experiments should confirm/change the conclusion
    but my experience with jealousy confirms it

    on the physical level human babies are the most helpless creatures on earth and depend very much and very long on their parents for survival
    a baby can walk at age about one year
    a young fowl walks 15 minutes after birth
    a bird has to fly and look for his own food 1 or 2 months after leaving the egg

    on the mental level maybe it is the same

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    Nice Video.

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