Thursday, April 28, 2022

Nikola Tesla on His Inventions

My Inventions by Nikola Tesla
London: Arcturus Publishing, 2020
ISBN 978-1-78950-078-3

(page 17) When I get an idea I start at once building it up in my imagination. I change the construction, make improvements and operate the device in my mind. It is absolutely immaterial to me whether I run my turbine in thought or test it in my shop. I even note if it is out of balance. There is no difference whatever, the results are the same. In this way I am able to rapidly develop and perfect a conception without touching anything. When I have gone so far as to embody in the invention every possible improvement I can think of and see no fault anywhere, I put into concrete form this final product of my brain. Invariably my device works as I conceived that it should, and the experiment comes out exactly as I planned it. In 20 years there has not been a single exception. Why should it be otherwise?
[Tesla’s imagination and Einstein’s thought experiments. Did they ever meet?]

(21) The sight of a pearl would almost give me a fit but I was fascinated with the glitter of crystals or objests with sharp edges and plane surfaces. I would not touch the hair of other people except, perhaps, at the point of a revolver. I would get a fever by looking at a peach and if a piece of camphor was anywhere in the house it caused me the keenest discomfort.
[Do I dare to eat a peach? from the Eliot’s The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
Tesla would have been interested in qi gong.]

(32) I am ambidextrous now but then I was left-handed and had comparatively little strength in my right arm.
[Tesla taught himself to be ambidextrous. A Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain exercise is to draw with the non-dominant hand and see what that does. I like to play stringed instruments with the non-dominant as well as dominant hand in my practice.]

(52-53) In 1899, when I was past 40 and carrying on my experiments in Colorado, I could hear very distinctly thunderclaps at a distance of 550 miles. The limit of audition for my young assistants was scarcely more than 150 miles. My ear was over 13 times more sensitive. Yet at that time I was, so to speak, stone deaf in comparison with the acuteness of my hearing while under the nervous strain. In Budapest I could hear the ticking of a watch three rooms between me and the time-piece. A fly alighting on a table in the room would cause a dull thud in my ear. A carriage passing at a distance of a few miles fairly shook my whole body. The whistle of a locomotive 20 or 30 miles away made the bench or chair on which I sat vibrate so strongly that the pain was unbearable. The ground under my feet trembled continuously. I had to support my bed on rubber cushions to get any rest at all. The roaring noises form near and far often produced the effect of spoken words which would have frightened me had I not been able to resolve them into their accidental components. The sun’s rays, when periodically interrupted, would cause blows of such force on my brain that they would stun me. I had to sumopn all my willpower to pass under a bridge or other structure as I experienced a crushing pressure on the skull. In the dark I had the sense of a bat and could detect the presence of an object at a distance of 12 feet by a peculiar creepy sensation on the forehead. My pulse varied from a few to 260 beats and all the tissues of the body quivered with twitches and tremors which was perhaps the hardest to bear.

(67) I rejected the inductor type, fearing that it might not yield perfect sine waves which were so important to resonant action.

(73-74) One day, as I was roaming in the mountains, I sought shelter from an approaching storm. The sky became overhung with heavy clouds but somehow the rain was delayed until, all of a sudden, there was a lightning flash and a few moments after a deluge. This observation set me thinking. It was manifest that the two phenomena were closely related, as cause and effect, and a little reflection led me to the conclusion that the electrical energy involved in the precipitation of the water was inconsiderable, the function of lightning being much like that of a sensitive trigger.

Here was a stupendous possibility of achievement. If we could produce electric effects of the required quality, this whole planet and the conditions of existence on it could be transformed. The sun raises the water of the oceans and winds drive it to distant regions where it remains in a state of most delicate balance. If it were in our power to upset it when and wherever derived, this mighty life-sustaining stream could be at will controlled. We could irrigate arid deserts, create lakes and rivers and provide motive power in unlimited amounts. This would be the most efficient way of harnessing the sun to the uses of man.

(80) ‘The Terrestrial Stationary Waves.’ This wonderful discovery, popularly explained means that the Earth is responsive to electrical vibrations of definite pitch just as a tuning fork to certain waves of sound.
[what would a world where Tesla’s World System works look like?]

(103) We are automata entirely controlled by the forces of the medium being tossed about like corks on the surface of the water, but mistaking the resultant of the impulses from the outside for free will. The movements and other actions we perform are always life preservative and though seemingly quite independent from one another, we are connected by invisible links.

(108) The proposed League [of Nations, My Inventions was first published in 1919] is not a remedy but on the contrary, in the opinion of a number of competent men, may bring about results just the opposite. It is particularly regrettable that a punitive policy was adopted in framing the terms of peace, because a few years hence it will be possible for nations to fight without armies, ships or guns, by weapons far more terrible, to the destructive action and range of which there is virtually no limit.

Monday, April 11, 2022

The Devils of Loudun - Quotes

 The Devils of Loudun by Aldous Huxley

NY:  Perennial Library, 1952

(page 22)   But partisanship is a complex passion which permits those who indulge in it to make the best of both worlds.  Because they do these things for the sake of the group which is, by definition, good and even sacred, they can admire themselves and loathe their neighbors, they can seek power and money, can enjoy the pleasures of aggression and cruelty, not merely without feeling guilty, but with a positive glow of conscious virtue.  Loyalty to their group transforms these pleasant vices into acts of heroism.  Partisans are aware of themselves, not as sinners or criminals, but as altruists and idealists.  And with certain qualifications, this is in fact what they are.  The only trouble is that their altruism is merely egotism at one remove, and that the ideal, for which they are ready in many cases to lay down their lives, is nothing but the rationalization of corporate interests and party passions.

(66)  His career was a demonstration of the fact that, in certain circumstances, crawling is a more effective means of locomotion than walking upright, and that the best crawlers are also the deadliest biters.

(98)  We are born with Original Sin;  but we are also born with Original Virtue - with a capacity for grace, in the language of Western theology, with a “spark,” a “fine point of the soul,” a fragment of unfallen consciousness, surviving from the state of prmal innocence and technically known as the _synteresis_.

(115)  To sins of the will and the imagination kind nature sets no limits.  Avarice and the lust for power are as nearly infinite as anything in this sublunary world can be.  And so is the thing which DH Lawrence called “sex in the head.”  As heroic passion, it is one of the last infirmities of noble mind.  As imagined sensuality, it is one of the first infirmities of the insane mind.  And in either case (being free of the body and the limitations imposed by fatigue, by boredom, by the essentail irrelevance of material happenings in our ideas and fancies), it partakes of the infinite.

(134)  Few people now believe in the Devil;  but very many enjoy behaving as their ancestors behaved when the Fiend was a reality as unquestionable as his Opposite Number.  In order to justify their behavior, they turn their theories into dogmas, their bylaws into First Principles, their political bosses into Gods and all those who disagree with them into incarnate devils.  This idolatrous transformation of the relative into the Absolute and the all too human into the Divine, makes it possible for them to indulge in their ugliest passions with a clear conscience and in the certainty that they are working for the Highest Good.  And when the current beliefs come, in their turn, to look silly, a new set will be invented, so that the immemorial madness may continue to wear its customary mask of legality, idealism and true religion.

(156-157)  By those who serve him, a great man must be treated as a mixture between a god, a naughty child and a wild beast.  The god must be worshiped, the child amused and bamboozled, and wild beast placated and, when aroused, avoided.  The courtier, who, by an unwelcome suggestion, annoys this insane trinity of superhuman pretension, subhuman ferocity and infantile silliness, is merely asking for trouble.  

(174)  “The soul is immortal, created of nothing, and so infused into the child or embryo in his mother’s womb, six months after conception;  not as the brutes, which are ex traduce (handed on by parent to offspring) and, by dying with them, vanish into nothing.” - Robert Burton

(192)  Those who crusade, not _for_ God in themselves, but _against_ the devil in others, never succeed in making the world better, but leave it either as it was, or sometimes even perceptibly worse than it was, before the crusade began.  By thinking primarily of evil we tend, however excellent our intentions, to create occasions for evil to manifest itself.

(260)  Every crusader is apt to go mad.  He is haunted by the wickedness which he attributes to his enemies;  it becomes inn some sort a part of him.

(284)  Insofar as they are incarnated minds, subject to physical decay and death, capable of pain and pleasure, driven by craving and abhorrence and oscillating between the desire for self-assertion and the desire for self-transcendence, human beings are faced, at every time and place, with the same problems, are confronted by the same temptations and are permitted by the Order of Things to make the same choice betweenn unregeneracy and enlightenment.  The context changes, but the gist and the meaning are invariable.

(307)  We participate in a tragedy;  at a comedy we only look.  The tragic author feels himself into his personages; and so, from the other side, does the reader or listener.  But in pure comedy there is no identification between creator and literary creature, between spectator and spectacle.  The author looks, judges and records, from the outside;  and from the outside the audience observes what he has recorded, judges as he has judged and , if the comedy is good enough, laughs.  Pure comedy cannot be kept up for very long.

(312)  That the infinite must include the finite and must therefore be totally present at every point of space, every instant of time, seems sufficiently evident. 

(331)  The fundamental human problem is ecological:  men must learn how to live with the cosmos on all its levels, from the material to the spiritual.  As a race, we have to discover how a huge and rapidly increasing population can go on existing satisfactorily on a planet of limited size and possessed of resources, many of which are wasting assets that can never be renewed.  As individuals, we have to find out how to establish a satisfactory relationship with that infinite Mind, from which we habitually imagine ourselves to be isolated.

(350)  For these neo-conservatives [Communist Russia, Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany] , mass intoxication was chiefly valuable, henceforward, as a means of heightening their subjects’ suggestibility and so rendering them more docile to the expressions of authoritarian will.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Motivation and Drive

 Drive:  The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink

NY:  Penguin Group, 2009
ISBN 978-1-59448-884-9

(page 8)  "When money is used as an external reward for some activity, the subjects lose intrinsic interest for the activity," he [Edward Deci] wrote....

Human beings, Deci said, have an "inherent tendency to seek our novelty and challenges, to extend and exercise their capacities, to explore, and to learn."  But this third drive was more fragile than the other two;  it needed the right environment to survive.  "One who is interested in developing and enhancing intrinsic motivation in children, employees, students, etc., should not concentrate on external-control systems such as monetary rewards," he wrote in a follow-up paper.

(23)  Lakhani and Wolk uncovered a range of motives, but they found "that enjoyment-based intrinsic motivation, namely how creative a person feels when working on the project, is the strongest and most pervasive driver."  A large majority of programmers, the researchers discovered, reported that they frequently reached the state of optimal challenge called "flow."  Likewise, three German economists who studied open-source projects around the world found that what drives participants is "a set of predominantly intrinsic motives" - in particular, "the fun... of mastering the challenge of a given software problem" and the "desire to give a gift to the programmer community."

(24)  For example, in April 2008, Vermont became the first U. S. state to allow a new type of business called the "low-profit limited liability corporation."  Dubbed an L3C, this entity is a corporation - but not as we typically think of it.  As one report explained, an L3C "operate[s] like a for-profit business generating at least modest profits, but its primary aim [is] to offer significant social benefits."  Three other U. S. states have followed Vermont's lead.  An L3C in North Carolina, for instance, is buying abandoned furniture factories in the state, updating them with green technology, and leasing them back to beleaguered furniture manufacturers at a low rate. The venture hopes to make money, but its real purpose is to help revitalize a struggling region....

The Fourth Sector Network in the United States and Denmark is promoting "the for-benefit organization" - a hybrid that it says represents a new category of organization that is both economically self-sustaining and animated by public purpose.  One example:  Mozilla, the entity that gave us Firefox, is organized as a "for-benefit" organization.  And three U. S. entrepreneurs have invented the "B Corporation," a designation that requires companies to amend their bylaws so that the incentives favor long-term value and social impact instead of short-term economic gain.

NB:  Gandhian economics, stewardship

(28)  Some scholars are already widening the reach of behavioral economics to encompass these ideas.  The most prominent is Bruno Frey, an economist at the University of Zurich...  As Frey writes, "Intrinsic motivation is of _great importance_ for all economic activities.  It is inconceivable that people are motivated solely or even mainly by external incentives."

(32)  To recap, Motivation 2.0 suffers from three compatibility problems.  It doesn't mesh with the way many new business models are organizing what we do - because we're intrinsically motivated purpose maximizers, not only extrinsically motivated profit maximizers.  It doesn't comport with the way that twenty-first-century economics thinks about what we do - because economists are finally realizing that we're full -fledged human beings, not single-minded economic robots.  And perhaps most important, it's hard to reconcile with much of what we actually do at work - because for growing numbers of people, work is often creative, interesting, and self-directed rather than unrelentingly routine, boring, and other-directed.

(36-37)  [Tom Sawyer fence painting incident]  From this episode, Twain extracts a key motivational principle, namely "that Work consists of whatever a body is OBLIGED to do, and that Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do."  He goes on to write:

There are wealthy gentlemen in England who drive four-horse passenger-coaches twenty or thirty miles on a daily line, in the summer, because the privilege costs them considerable money;  but if they were offered wages for the service, that would turn it into work and then they would resign.

In other words, rewards can perform a weird sort of behavioral alchemy:  They can transform an interesting task into a drudge.  They can turn play into work.  And by diminishing intrinsic motivation, they can send performance, creativity, and even upstanding behavior toppling like dominoes.  Let's call this the Sawyer Effect.
NB:  Tom Sawyer organizing

(39)  Deci:  "Careful consideration of reward effects reported in 128 experiments lead to the conclusion that tangible rewards tends to have a substantially negative effect on intrinsic motivation," they determined.  "When institutions - families, schools, businesses, and athletic teams, for example - focus on the short-term and opt for controlling people's behavior," they do considerable long-term damage.

Alfie Kohn, whose prescient 1993 book,  _Punished by Rewards_, lays out a devastating indictment of extrinsic incentive

(40-41)  They [Ariely and others] recruited eighty-seven participants and asked them to play several games - for example, tossing tennis balls at a target, unscrambling anagrams, recalling a string of digits - that required motor skills, creativity, or concentration.  To test the power of incentives, the experimenters offered three types of rewards for reaching certain performance levels.

One-third of the participants could earn a small reward - 4 rupees (at the time worth around 50 U. S. cents and equal to about a day's pay in Madurai [India] for reaching their performance targets.  One-third could earn a medium reward - 10 rupees (about $5, or two weeks' pay).  And one-third could earn a very large reward - 400 rupees (about $50, or nearly five months' pay)...

As it turned out, the people offered the medium-sized bonus didn't perform any better than those offered the small one.  And those in the 400-rupee super-incentivized group?  They fared worst of all.  By nearly every measure, they lagged behind both the low-reward and medium-reward participants.  Reporting the result for the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, the researchers wrote, "in eight of the nine tasks we examined across the three experiments, higher incentives led to _worse_ performance."

...In 2009, scholars at the London School of Economics - alma mater of eleven Nobel laureates in economics - analyzed fifty-one studies of corporate pay-for-performance plans.  These economists' conclusion:  "We find that financial incentives... can result in a negative impact on overall performance."

(44)  [Candle problem]  He told the first group that he was timing their work merely to establish norms for how long it typically took someone to complete this sort of puzzle.  To the second group he offered incentives.  If a participant's time was among the fastest 25 percent of all the people being tested, that participant would receive $5.  If the participant's time was the fastest of all, the reward would be $20.  Adjusted for inflation, those are decent sums of money for a few minutes of effort - a nice motivator.

How much faster did the incentivized group come up with a solution?  On average, it took them nearly three and a half minutes _longer_....

Why?  Rewards, by their very nature, narrow our focus.  That's helpful when there's a clear path to a solution.  They help us stare ahead and race faster.  But "if-then" motivators are terrible for challenges like the candle problem.  As this experiment shows, the rewards narrowed people's focus and blinkered the wide view that might have allowed them to see new uses for old objects.

(46)  For artists, scientists, inventors, schoolchildren, and the rest of us, intrinsic motivation - the drive to do something because it is interesting, challenging, and absorbing - is essential for high levels of creativity.  But the "if-then" motivators that are the staple of most businesses often stifle, rather than stir, creative thinking.

(50-51)  As the cadre of business school professors [Harvard Business School, Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, the University of Arizona's Eller College of Management, and the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School] write, "Substantial evidence demonstrates that in addition to motivating constructive effort, goal setting can induce unethical behavior."

The examples are legion, the researchers note.  Sears imposes a sales quota on its auto repair staff - and workers respond by over-charging customers and completing unnecessary repairs.  Enron sets lofty revenue goals - and the race to meet them by any means possible catalyzes the company's collapse.  Ford is so intent on producing a certain car at a certain weight at a certain price by a certain date that it omits safety checks and unleashes the dangerous Ford Pinto.

The problem with making an extrinsic reward the only destination that matters is that some people will choose the quickest route there, even it it means taking the low road....

Executives game their quarterly earnings so they can snag a performance bonus.  Secondary school counselors doctor student transcripts so that their seniors can get into college.  Athletes inject themselves with steroids to post better numbers and trigger lucrative performance bonuses.

Contrast that approach with behavior sparked by intrinsic motivation.  When the reward is the activity itself - deepening learning, delighting customers, doing one's best - there are no shortcuts.  The only route to the destination is the high road.  In some sense, it's impossible to act unethically because the person who's disadvantaged isn't a competitor but yourself....

Goals may cause systematic problems for organizations due to narrowed focus, unethical behavior, increased risk taking, decreased cooperation, and decreased intrinsic motivation.  Use care when applying goals in your organization.

(53)  "After the introduction for the fine [for not arriving on time to pick up children from day-care] we observed a steady _increase_ in the number of parents coming late," the economists wrote.  "The rate finally settled, at a level that was higher and _almost twice as large_ as the initial one."  And in language reminiscent of Harry Harlow's head scratching, they write that the existing literature didn't account for such a result.  Indeed, the "possibility of an increase in the behavior being punished was not even considered."

...One reason most parents showed up on time is that they had a relationship with the teachers - who, after all, were caring for their precious sons and daughters - and wanted to treat them fairly.  Parents had an intrinsic desire to be scrupulous about punctuality.  But the threat of a fine - like the promise of the kronor in the blood experiment - edged aside the third drive.  The fine shifted the parents' decision from a partly moral obligation (be fair to my kids' teachers) to a pure transaction (I can buy extra time).  There wasn't room for both.  The punishment didn't promote good behavior;  it crowded it out.

(54)  Pay your son to take out the trash - and you've pretty much guaranteed the kid will never do it again for free.  What's more, once the initial money buzz tapers off, you'll likely have to increase the payment to continue compliance.

As Suvorov explains, "Rewards are addictive in that once offered, a contingent reward makes an agent expect it whenever a similar task is face, which in turn compels the principal to use rewards over and over again."  And before long, the existing reward may no longer suffice.  It will quickly feel less like a bonus and more like the status quo - which then forces the principal to offer larger rewards to achieve the same effect.
NB:  Sounds like CEO pay and the banksters bonuses don't it
Addiction thinking

(55)  In other words, if we watch how people's brains respond, promising them monetary rewards and giving them cocaine, nicotine, or amphetamines look disturbingly similar....

Rewards' addictive qualities can also distort decision-making.  Knutson has found that activation in the nucleus accumbens seem to predict "both risky choices and risk-seeking mistakes."  Get people fired up with the prospect of rewards, and instead of making better decisions, as Motivation 2.0 hopes, they can actually make worse ones.

(57)  Several researchers have found that companies that spend the most time offering guidance on quarterly earnings deliver significantly _lower_ long-term growth rates than companies that offer guidance less frequently.  (One reason:  The earnings-obsessed companies typically invest less in research and development.)  They successfully achieved their short-term goals, but threaten the health of the company two or three years hence.  As the scholars who warned about goals gone wild put it, "The very presence of goals may lead employees to focus myopically on short-term gains and to lose sight of the potential devastating long-term effects on the organization."

(58)  This is the nature of economic bubbles:  What seems to be irrational exuberance is ultimately a bad case of extrinsically motivated myopia.

By contrast, the elements of genuine motivation that we'll explore later, by their very nature, defy a short-term view.  Take mastery.  The objective itself is inherently long-term because complete mastery, in a sense, is unattainable.  Even Roger Federer, for instance, will never fully "master" the game of tennis.  But introducing an "if-then" reward to help develop mastery usually backfires.  That's why school children who are paid to solve problems typically choose easier problems and therefore learn less.  The short-term prize crowds out the long-term learning....

Likewise, several studies show that paying people to exercise, stop smoking, or take their medicines produces terrific results at first - but the healthy behavior disappears once the incentives are removed.

(59)  Carrots and Sticks:  The Seven Deadly Flaws
1.  They can extinguish intrinsic motivation.
2.  They can diminish performance.
3.  They can crush creativity.
4.  They can crowd out good behavior.
5.  They can encourage cheating, shortcuts, and unethical behavior.
6.  They can become addictive.
7.  They can foster short-term thinking.

(60)  The starting point, of course, is to ensure that the baseline rewards - wages, salaries, benefits, and so on - are adequate and fair.  Without a healthy baseline, motivation of any sort is difficult and often impossible.

(62)  For routine tasks, which aren't very interesting and don't demand much creative thinking, rewards can provide a small motivation booster shot without the harmful side effects.... when the task called for "even rudimentary cognitive skill," a larger reward "led to poorer performance.  But "as long as the task involved only mechanical skill, bonuses worked as they would be expected:  the higher the pay, the better the performance."

(64)  Offer a rationale for why the task is necessary.  A job that's not inherently interesting can become more meaningful, and therefore more engaging, if it's part of a larger purpose...

Acknowledge that the task is boring.  This is an act of empathy, of course.  And the acknowledgment will help people understand why this is the rare instance when "if-then" rewards are part of how your organization operates.

Allow people to complete the task their own way.  Think autonomy, not control.  State the outcome you need.  But instead of specifying precisely the way to reach it... give them the freedom over how they do the job.

(66)  The essential requirement:  Any extrinsic reward should be unexpected and offered only after the task is complete....

In other words, where "if-then" rewards are a mistake, shift to "now that" rewards - as in "Now that you've finished the poster and it turned out so well, I'd like to celebrate by taking you out to lunch."

Ad Deci and his colleagues explain, "If tangible rewards are given unexpectedly to people after they have finished a task, the rewards are less likely to be experienced as the reason for doing the task and are thus less likely to be detrimental to intrinsic motivation."

(67)  First, _consider nontangible rewards_.  Praise and positive feedback are much less corrosive than cash and trophies.  In fact, in Deci's original experiments, and in his subsequent analysis of other studies, he found that "positive feedback can have an enhancing effect on intrinsic motivation."

...Second, _provide useful information_.  Amabile has found that while controlling extrinsic motivators can clobber creativity, "informational or enabling motivators can be conducive" to it.

(72)  SDT [Self Determination Theory], by contrast begins with a notion of universal human _needs_.  It argues that we have three innate psychological needs - competence, autonomy, and relatedness.  When those needs are satisfied, we're motivated, productive, and happy.

"If there's anything [fundamental] about our nature, it's the capacity for interest.  Some things facilitate it.  Some things undermine it," [Richard] Ryan explained during one of our conversations.
NB:  Interest is attention - appamada

"Of course, they're [rewards] necessary in workplaces and other settings," says Deci.  "but the less salient they are made, the better.  When people use rewards to motivate, that's when they're most demotivating."

(76)  If your starting point was Theory X, he [Douglas McGregor] said, your managerial techniques would inevitably produce limited results, or even go awry entirely.  If you believed in the "mediocrity of the masses," as he put it, then mediocrity became the ceiling on what you could achieve.  But if your starting point was Theory Y, the possibilities were vast - not simply for the individual's potential, but for the company's bottom line as well.
NB:  Theory X/Theory Y : Conservative/Liberal

(78-79)  Type I [Intrinsic] behavior is made, not born.  These behavioral patterns aren't fixed traits.  They are proclivities that emerge from circumstance, experience, and context...  The science demonstrates that once people learn the fundamental practices and attitudes - and can exercise them in supportive settings - their motivation, and their ultimate performance, soars.  Any Type X [Extrinsic] can become a Type I.

Type I's almost always outperform Type X's in the long run.  Intrinsically motivated people usually achieve more than their reward-seeking counterparts.  Alas, that's not always true in the short term.  An intense focus on extrinsic rewards can indeed deliver fast results.  The trouble is, this approach is difficult to sustain.  And it doesn't assist in mastery - which is the source of achievement over the long haul....

Type I behavior does not disdain money or recognition.  Both Type X's and Type I's care about money.  If an employee's compensation doesn't hit the baseline that I described in Chapter 2 - if her organization doesn't pay her an adequate amount, or if her pay isn't equitable compared to others doing similar work - that persons motivation will crater regardless of whether she leans towards X or toward I.

(80)  Type I behavior is a renewable resource.  This of Type X behavior as coal and Type I behavior as the sun....

Type I behavior promotes greater physical and mental well-being.  According to a raft of studies from SDT researchers, people oriented toward autonomy and intrinsic motivation have higher self-esteem, better interpersonal relationships, and greater general well-being than those who are extrinsically motivated.

(80-81)  Ultimately, Type I behavior depends on three nutrients:  autonomy, mastery, and purpose.  Type I behavior is self-directed.  It is devoted to becoming better and better at something that matters.  And it connects that quest for excellence to a larger purpose.

(86)  ROWEs [results-only work environments] are the brainchild of Cali Ressler and Jody Thompson, two former human resources executives at the American retailer Best Buy.    ROWE's principles marry the commonsense pragmatism of Ben Franklin to the cage-rattling radicalism of Saul Alinsky.  In a ROWE workplace, people don't have schedules.  They show up when they want.  They don't have to be in the office at a certain time - or any time, for that matter.  They just have to get their work done.  How they do it, when they do it, and where they do it is up to them.

(87)  People still had specific goals they had to reach - for example, completing a project by a certain time or ringing up a particular number of sales.  And if they needed help, [Jeff] Gunther was there to assist.  But he decided against tying those goals to compensation.  "That creates a culture that says it's all about the money and not enough about the work."  Money, he believes, is only "a threshold motivator."  People must be paid well adn be able to take care of their families, he says.  But once a company meets this baseline, dollars and cents don't much affect performance and motivation.  Indeed, Gunther thinks that in a ROWE environment, employees are far less likely to jump to another job for a $10,000 or even $20,000 increase in salary.  The freedom they have to do great work is more valuable, and harder to match, than a pay raise - and employees' spouses, partners, and families are among ROWE's staunchest advocates.

(88)  Gunther:  "For me, it's a partnership between me and the employees.  They're not resources.  They're partners."  And partners, like all of us, need to direct their own lives.

(90)  Deci and Ryan:  "Autonomous motivation involves behaving with a full sense of volition and choice," they write, "whereas controlled motivation involves behaving with the experience of pressure and demand toward specific outcomes that comes from forces perceived to be external to the self."

Autonomy, as they see it, is different from independence.  It's not the rugged, go-it-alone, rely-on-nobody individualism of the American cowboy.  It means acting with choice - which means we can be both autonomous and happily interdependent with others.  And while the idea of independence has national and political reverberations, autonomy appears to be a human concept rather than a western one.  Researchers have found a link between autonomy and overall well-being not only in North America and Western Europe, but also in Russia, Turkey, and South Korea.  Even in high poverty non-Western locales like Bangladesh, social scientists have found that autonomy is something that people seek and that improves their lives.

(90-91)  According to a cluster of recent behavioral science studies, autonomous motivation promotes greater conceptual understanding, better grades, enhanced persistence at school and in sporting activities, higher productivity, less burnout, and greater levels of psychological well-being.  Those effect carry over to the workplace.

(91)  For example, researchers at Cornell University studied 320 small businesses, half of which granted workers autonomy, the other half relying on top-down direction. The businesses that offered autonomy grew at four times the rate of the control-oriented firms and had one-third the turnover.

(93)  Now, once a quarter, the company [Atlassian] sets aside an entire day when its engineers can work on any software problem they want - only this time, "to get them out of the day to day," it _must_ be something that's not part of their regular job.

At two P. M. on a Thursday, the day begins.  Engineers, including Cannon-Brookes himself, crash out new code or an elegant hack - any way they want, with anyone they want.  Many work through the night.  Then, at four P. M. on Friday, they show the results to the rest of the company in a wild-and-woolly all-hands meeting stocked with ample quantities of cold beer and chocolate cake.  Atlassian calls these twenty-four-hour bursts of freedom and creativity "FedEx Days" - because people have to deliver something overnight.  And deliver Atlassians have.  Over the years, this odd little exercise has produced an array of software fixes that might otherwise never have merged.  Says one engineer, "Some of the coolest stuff we have in our product today has come from FedEx Days."
NB:  Pecha-Kucha and Maker Culture

"We've always taken the position that money is only something you can lose on," Cannon-Brookes told me.  "If you don't pay enough, you can lose people.  But beyond that, money is not a motivator.  What matters are these other features."

(93-94)  And what a few future-facing businesses are discovering is that one of the essential features is autonomy - in particular, autonomy over four aspects of work: what people do, when they do it, how they do it, and whom they do it with.  As Atlassian's experience shows, Type I behavior emerges when people have autonomy over the four T's:  their _task_, their _time_, their _technique_, and their _team_.

(94)  In the spring of 2008, they [owners of Atlasssian] announced that for the next six months, Atlassian developers could spend 20 percent of their time - rather than just one intense day - working on any project they wanted.

(95)  William McKnight, CEO 3M in the 1930s and 1940s:  ...this unlikely corporate heretic established a new policy:  3M's technical staff could spend up to 15 percent of their time on projects of their choosing... so seemingly illicit, that inside the company, it was known as the "bootlegging policy."  And yet it worked.  These walled gardens of autonomy soon became fertile fields for a harvest of innovations - including Pot-it notes.

(96)  McKnight's innovation remains in place at 3M.  But only a surprisingly small number of other companies have moved in this direction, despite its proven results.  The best-known company to embrace it is Google, which has long encouraged engineers to spend one day a week workign on a side project.  Some Googlers use their "20 percent time" to fix an existing product, but most use it to develop something entirely new.  Of course, Google doesn't sign away the intellectual property rights to what's created during that 20 percent - which is wise.  In a typical year, more than half of Google's new offerings are birthed during this period of pure autonomy....
NB:  Art Kleiner's _Age of Heretics_

As Google engineer Alec Proudfoot, whose own 20 percent project aimed at boosting the efficiency of hybrid cars, put it in a television interview:  "Just about all the good ideas here at Google have bubbled up from 20 percent time."

(100)  If we begin from an alternative, and more accurate, presumption - that people  want to do good work - then we ought to let them focus on the work itself rather than the time it takes them to do it.

(101)  Reporting on the company's [Best Buy] ROWE results in the _Harvard Business Review_, Tamara Erickson writes:

Salaried people put in as much time as it takes to do their work.  Hourly employees in the program work a set number of hours to comply with federal labor regulations, but they get to choose when.  Those employees report better relationships with family and friends, more company loyalty, and more focus and energy.  Productivity has increased by 35%, and voluntary turnover is 320 basis points lower than in teams that have not made the change.  Employees say they don't know whether they work fewer hours - they've stopped counting.

(102)  Tony Hsieh, founder of the online shoe retailer (now part of, thought there was a better way to recruit, prepare, and challenge such employees.  So new hires at Zappos go through a week of training.  Then, at the end of those seven days, Hsieh makes them an offer.  If they feel Zappos isn't for them and want to leave, he'll pay them $2,000 - no hard feelings.  Hsieh is hacking the Motivation 2.0 operating system like a brilliant and benevolent teenage computer whiz. He's using an "if-then" reward not to motivate people to perform better, but to weed out those who aren't fit for a Motivation 3.0-style workplace.  The people who remain receive decent pay, and just as important, they have autonomy over technique.  Zappos doesn't monitor its customer service employees' call times or require them to use scripts.  The reps handle calls the way they want.  Their job is to serve the customer well;  how they do it is up to them.

(103)  ... Zappos consistently ranks as one of the best companies for customer service in the United States - ahead of better-known names like Cadillac, BMW, and Apple and roughly equal to ritzy brands like Jaguar and the Ritz-Carlton....

homeshoring.  Instead of requiring customer service reps to report to a single large call center they're routing the calls to the employees' homes.  This cuts commuting time for staff, removes them from physical monitoring, and provides far greater autonomy over how they do their jobs.

(105)  For example, at the organic grocery chain Whole Foods, the people who are nominally in charge of each department don't do the hiring.  That task falls to a department's employees.  After a job candidate has worked a thirty-day trial period on a team, the prospective teammates vote on whether to hire that person full-time. At W. L. Gore & Associates, the makers of the GORE-TEX fabric and another example of Motivation 3.0 in action, anybody who wants to rise in the ranks and lead a team must assemble people willing to work with her.

(106)  And once again, the science affirms the value of something traditional businesses have been slow to embrace.  Ample research has shown that people workign in self-organized teams are more satisfied than those working in inherited teams.  Likewise, studies by Deci and others have shown that people high in intrinsic motivation are better coworkers.  And that makes the possibilities on this front enormous.  If you want to work with more Type I's, the best strategy is to become one yourself. Autonomy, it turns out, can be contagious.

(107)  If we pluck people out of controlling environments, when they've known nothing else, and plop them in a ROWE or an environment of undiluted autonomy, they'll struggle.  Organizations must provide, as Richard Ryan puts it, "scaffolding" to help every employee find his footing to make the transition...

As Zappos CEO Hsieh told me by e-mail, "Studies have shown that perceived control is an important component of one's happiness.  However, what people feel like they want control over really varies, so I don't think there's one aspect of autonomy that's universally the most important.  Different individuals have different desires, so the best strategy for an employer would be to figure our what's important to each individual employee."

(111)  Gallup's extensive research on the subject shows that in the United States, more than 50 percent of employees are not engaged at work - and nearly 20 percent are actively disengaged.  The cost of all this disengagement:  about $300 billion a year in lost productivity - a sum larger than the GDP of Portugal, Singapore, or Israel Yet in comparative terms, the United States looks like a veritable haven of Type I behavior at work.  According to the consulting firm McKinsey & Co., in some countries as little as 2 to 3 percent of the workforce is highly engaged in their work.

(114)  Csikszentmihalyi would page people eight times a day at random intervals and ask them to write in a booklet their answers to several short questions about what they were doing, who they were with, and how they'd describe their state of mind.  Put the findings together for seven days and you had a flip book, a mini-movie, of someone's week.
NB:  App for finding flow?  Probably already exists.

(117)  He [Stefan Falk of Ericsson] persuaded managers to configure work assignments so that employees had clear objectives and a way to get quick feedback.  And instead of meeting with their charges for once-a-tear performance reviews, managers sat down with employees one-on-one six times a year, often for as long as ninety minutes, to discuss their level of engagement and path toward mastery.  The flow-centered strategy worked well enough that Ericsson began using it in offices around the world....

The he required them [managers] to meet with staff once a month to get a sense of whether people were overwhelmed or underwhelmed with their work - and to adjust assignments to help they find flow.  After two years of managerial revamping, state-owned Green Cargo became profitable for the first time in 125 years - and executives cite its newfound flowcentricity as a key reason.

In addition, a study of 11,000 industrial scientists and engineers working at companies in the United States found that the desire for intellectual challenge - that is, the urge to master something new and engaging - was the best predictor of productivity.

(118)  Why not, he [Jenova Chen] thought, design to bring the flow sensation to more casual gamers?

...Chen calls his game flOw 
.  And it's been a huge hit.  People have played the free online version of the game more than three million times. 

(119)  Some tasks at work don't automatically provide surges of flow, yet still need to get done.  So the shrewdest enterprises afford employees the freedom to sculpt their jobs in ways that bring a little bit of flow to otherwise mundane duties.

(121)  ...the first law of mastery:  Mastery is a mindset.

(121-122)  If you believe intelligence is a fixed quantity, then every educational and professional encounter becomes a measure of how much you have.  If you believe intelligence is something you can increase, then the same encounters become opportunities for growth.  In one view, intelligence is something you demonstrate;  in the other, it's something you develop.

The two self-theories lead down two very different paths - one that heads toward mastery and one that doesn't.  For instance, consider goals,  [Carol] Dweck says they come in two varieties - performance goals and learning goals.  Getting an A in French class is a performance goal.  Being able to speak French is a learning goal.  "Both goals are entirely normal and pretty much universal," Dweck says, "and both can fuel achievement."  But only one leads to mastery.

(122)  As Dweck writes, "With a learning goal, students don't have to feel that they're already good at something in order to hang in and keep trying.  aFter all, their goal is to learn, not to prove they're smart."

(123)  Type X behavior often holds an entity theory of intelligence, prefers performance goals to learning goals, and disdains effort as a sign of weakness.  Type I behavior has an incremental theory of intelligence, prizes learning goals over performance goals, and welcomes effort as a way to improve at something that matters. bEgin with one mindset, and mastery is impossible begin with the other, and it can be inevitable.

(124)  The best predictor of success, the researchers found, was the prospective [West Point] cadets' ratings on a noncognitive, non-physical trait known as "grit" - defined as "perseverance and passion for long-term goals."  The experience of these army officers-in-training confirms the second law of mastery:  Mastery is a pain....

As he [psychologist Anders Ericsson] puts it, "Many characteristics once believed to reflect innate talent are actually the results of intense practice for a minimum of 10 years."

(125)  As they explained, "Whereas the importance of working harder is easily apprehended, the importance of working longer without switching objectives may be less perceptible... in every field, grit may be as essential as talent to high accomplishment."

(127)  This is the nature of mastery:  Mastery is an asymptote.

You can approach it.  You can home in on it.  You can get really, really, really close to it.  But like Cézanne, you can _never_ touch it.  Mastery is impossible to realize fully...

The joy is in the pursuit more than the realization.  In the end, mastery attracts precisely because mastery eludes.

(129)  As Csikszentmihalyi wrote, "After just two days of deprivation [of flow]... the general deterioration of mood was so advanced that prolonging the experiment woudl have been unadvisable."

...And one of Csikszentmihalyi's more surprising findings is that people are much more likely to reach that flow state at work than in leisure.  Work can often have the structure of other autotelic experiences:  clear goals, immediate feedback, challenges well matched to our abilities.  And when it does, we don't just enjoy it more, we do it better.

(133)  Autonomous people working toward mastery perform at very high levels.  But those who do so in the service of some greater objective can achieve even more. The most deeply motivated people - not to mention those who are most productive and satisfied - hitch their desires to a cause larger than themselves.

(136-137)  Even cooperatives - an older business model with motives other than profit maximization - are moving from the shaggy edge to the clean-cut center. According to writer Marjorie Kelly, in the last three decades, worldwide membership in co-ops has doubled to 800 million people.  In the United States alone, more people belong to a co-op than own shares in the stock market.  And the idea is spreading,  In Colombia, Kelly notes, "SaludCoop provides helath-care services to a quarter of the population.  In Spain, the Mondragón Coporación Cooperativa is the nation's seventh largest industrial concern."

...The aims of these Motivation 3.0 companies are not to chase profit while trying to stay ethical and law-abiding.  Their goal is to pursue purpose - and to use profit as the catalyst rather than the objective.

(138)  MBA Oath from HBS students in Spring 2009

And in just a few weeks, roughly one-quarter of the graduating class had taken the oath and signed the pledge.  In launching the effort, Max Anderson, one of the founders, said:  "My hope is that at our 25th reunion our class will not be known for how much money we made or how much money we gave back tot he school, but for how the world was a better place as a result of our leadership."

(139)  Robert Reich's pronoun test:  When he visits a workplace, he'll ask the people employed there some questions about the company.  He listens to the substance of their response, of course.  But most of all, he listens for the pronouns they use.  Do the workers refer to the company as "they"?  Or do they describe it in terms of "we"?  "They" companies and "we" companies, he says, are very different places.

(141)  In particular, spending money on other people (buying flowers for your spouse rather than an MP3 player for yourself) or on a cause (donating to a religious institution rather than going for an expensive haircut) can actually increase our subjective well-being...

But field research at the prestigious medical facility [Mayo Clinic] found that letting doctors spend one day a week on the aspect of their job that was most meaingful to them - whether patient care, research, or community service - could reduce the physical and emotional exhaustion that accompanies their work.  Doctors who participated in this trial policy had half the burnout rate of those who did not.  Think of it as "20 percent time" with a purpose.

(142-143)  But the results for people with profit goals were more complicated.  Those who said they were attaining their goals - accumulating wealth, winning acclaim - reported levels of satisfaction, self-esteem, and positive affect no higher than when they were students.  In other words, they'd reached their goals, but it didn't make them any happier.  What's more, graduates with profit goals showed _increases_ in anxiety, depression, and other negative indicators - again, even though they were attaining their goals.

"These findings are rather striking," the researchers write, "as they suggest that attainment of a particular set of goals [in this case, profit goals] has no impact on well-being and actually contributes to ill-being."

(144)  A health society - and healthy business organizations - begins with purpose and considers profit a way to move toward that end or a happy by-product of its attainment...

And since the planet very soon will contain more people over age sixty-five than under age five for the first time in its existence, the timing couldn't be better.

(163)  Kimley-Horn and Associates, a civil engineering firm in Raleigh, North Carolina, has established a reward system that gets the Type I stamp of approval:  At any point, without asking permission, anyone in the company can award a $50 bonus to any of her colleagues.  "It works because it's real-time, and it's not handed down from any management," the firm's human resources director told _Fast Company_.  "Any employee who does something exceptional receives recognition from their peers within minutes."  Because these bonuses are noncontingent "now that" rewards, they avoid the seven deadly flaws of most corporate carrots.  And because they come from a colleague, not a boss, they carry a different (and perhaps deeper) meaning.
NB:  Are there rules?

(170)  In Motivation 3.0, the best use of money is to take the issue of money off the table.

The more prominent salary, perks, and benefits are in someone's work life, the more they can inhibit creativity and unravel performance.  As Edward Deci explained in Chapter 3, when organizations use rewards like money to motivate staff, "that's when they're most demotivating."

(172)  Paying people a little more than the market demands, Akerlof and Yellen found, could attract better talent, reduce turnover, and boost productivity and morale...

Indeed, other economists have shown that providing an employee a high level of base pay does more to boost performance and organizational commitment than an attractive bonus structure.

(174)  We're bribing students into compliance instead of challenging them into engagement.

(178-179)  Praise effort and strategy, not intelligence.

Make praise specific.

Praise in private.  Praise is feedback - not an award ceremony.

Offer praise only when there's a good reason for it.

(181)  Sudbury Valley School... gives its students total control over the task, time and technique of their learning.

The Tinkering School  htttp://

(185)  Finite and Infinite Games:  A Vision of LIfe as Play and Possibility by James P Carse

Carol Dweck:  Learn to listen for a fixed mindset "voice" that might be hurting your resiliency.

Interpret challenges not as roadblocks, but as opportunities to stretch yourself.

Use the language of growth - for example, "I'm not sure I can do it now, but I think I can learn with time and effort."

(185)  Good Work:  When Excellence and Ethics Meet by Howard Gardner, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, and William Damon

(187)  Why We Do What We Do:  Understanding Self-Motivation by Edward L Deci with Richard Flaste

Mindset:  The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck

(192)  Punished by Rewards:  The Trouble with Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A's, Praise, and Other Bribes by Alfie Kohn

(193)  Maverick:  The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace by Ricardo Semler

(197)  Peter Drucker's 2005 Harvard Business Review article, "Managing Oneself."

(198)  [Jim] Collins [Built to Last] suggests four basic practices for creating a culture where self-motivation can flourish:
1.  "Lead with questions, not answers."
2.  "Engage in dialogue and debate, not coercion."
3.  "Conduct autopsies, without blame."
4.  "Build 'red flag' mechanisms."  In other words, make it easy for employees and customers to speak up when they identify a problem.

(217), free quarterly newsletter

Monday, January 24, 2022

Energy and Equity: Ivan Illich Uses Transportation as an Example

 Energy and Equity by Ivan Illich

NY:  Harper and Row, 1974


(page10-11)  The energy crisis cannot be overwhelmed by more energy inputs.  It can only be dissolved, along with the illusion that well-being depends on the number of energy slaves a man has at his command.   For this purpose, it is necessary to identify the thresholds beyond which power corrupts, and to do so by a political process that associates the community in the search for limits.  Because this kind of research runs counter to that now done by experts and for institutions, I shall call it counterfoil research.  It has three steps,  First, the need for limits on the per capita use of energy must be theoretically recognized as a social imperative.  Then, the range must be located wherein the critical magnitude might be found.  Finally, each community has to identify the levels of inequity, harrying and operant conditioning that its members are willing to accept in exchange for the satisfaction that comes of idolizing powerful devices and joining in rituals directed by the professionals who control their operation.

(19)  The model American puts in 1,600 hours to get 7,500 miles:  less than five miles per hour.  In countries deprived of a transportation industry, people manage to do the same, walking wherever they want to go, and they allocate only three to eight per cent of their society’s time budget to traffic instead of 28 per cent.  What distinguishes the traffic in rich countries from the traffic in poor countries is not more mileage per hour of life-time for the majority, but more hours of compulsory consumption of high doses of energy, packaged and unequally distributed by the transportation industry.

(26)  He (the habitual passenger) takes freedom of movement to be the same as one’s claim on propulsion.  He believes that the level of democratic process correlates to the power of transportatioin and communication systems.  He has lost faith in the political power of the feet and of the tongue.  As a result, what he wants is not more liberty as a citizen but better service as a client.  He does not insist on his freedom to move and to speak to people but on his claim to be shipped and to be informed by media.  He wants a better product rather than freedom from servitude to it.  It is vital that he come to see that the acceleration he demands is self-defeating, and that it must result in a further decline of equity, leisure and autonomy.

(32)  Tell me how fast you go and I’ll tell you who you are.

(38-39)  By now, people work a substantial part of every day to earn the money without which they could not even get to work.  The time a society spends on transportation grows in proportion to the speed of its fastest public conveyance.  Japan now [1974] leads the United States in both areas.  Life-time gets cluttered up with activities generated by traffic as soon as vehicles crash through the barrier that guards people from dislocation and space from distortion.
NB:  Ivan Illich watches “Traffic” with Jacques Tati

(45)  The compulsory consumption of a high-powered commodity (motorized transport) restricts the conditions for enjoying an abundant use value (the innate capacity for transit).  Traffic serves here as the paradigm of a general economic law:  Any industrial product that comes in per capita quanta beyond a given intensity exercises a radical monopoly over the satisfaction of a need.  Beyond some point, compulsory schooling destroys the environment for learning, medical delivery systems dry up the non-therapeutic sources of health, and transportation smothers traffic.
NB:  Elinor Ostrom

(54) Their [planners'] belief in the effectiveness of power blinds them to the disproportionately greater effectiveness of abstaining from its use.

(60)  Man on a bicycle can go three of four times faster than the pedestrian, but uses five times less energy in the process.  He carries one gram of his weight over a kilometre of flat road at an expense of only 0.15 calaries.  The bicycle is the perfect transducer to match man’s metabolic energy to the impedance of locomotion.  Equipped with this tool, man out strips the efficiency of not only all machines, but all other animals as well.

(75-76)   There are two roads from where we are to technological maturity:  one is the road of liberation from affluence;  the other is the road of liberation from dependence.  Both roads have the same destination:  the social restructuring of space that offers to each person the constantly renewed experience that the centre of the world is where he stands, walks and lives.
NB:  JG Ballard and Ivan Illich

Monday, January 10, 2022

Defying Hitler

 Defying Hitler by Sebastian Haffner

New York:  Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux, 2002


(16-17)  Growing up during WWI  "The force and influence of these experiences are not diminished by the fact that they were lived through by children or young boys.  On the contrary, in its reactions the mass psyche greatly resembles the child psyche.  One cannot overstate the childishness of the ideas that feed and stir the masses.  Real ideas must as a rule be simplified to the level of a child's understanding if they are to arouse the masses to historic actions.  A childish illusion, fixed in the minds of all children born in a certain decade and hammered home for four years, can easily reappear as a deadly serious political ideology twenty years later.

"From 1914 to 1918 a generation of German schoolboys daily experienced war as a great, thrilling, enthralling game between nations, which provided far more excitement and emotional satisfaction than anything peace could offer;  and that has now become the underlying vision of Nazism.  That is where it draws its allure from:  its simplicity, its appeal to the imagination, and its zest for action;  but also its intolerance and its cruelty toward internal opponents.  Anyone who does not join in the the game is regarded not as an adversary but as a spoilsport.  Ultimately that is also the source of Nazism's belligerent attitude toward neighboring states.  Other countries are not regarded as neighbors, but must be opponents, whether they like ti or not.  Otherwise the match would have to be called off!"

(31)  "I reiterate that we should take note of the political reactions of children.  What 'every child knows' is generally the last irrefutable quintessence of a political development."

(56)  the inflationary economy of 1923  "The old and unworldly had the worst of it.  Many were driven to begging, many to suicide.  The young and quick-witted did well.  Overnight they became free, rich, and independent.  It was a situation in which mental inertia and reliance on past experience were punished by starvation and death, but rapid appraisal of new situations and speed of reaction were rewarded with sudden, vast riches.  The twenty-one-year-old bank director appeared on the scene, and also the high school senior who earned his living from the stock-market tips of his slightly older friends.  He wore Oscar Wilde ties, organized champagne parties, and supported his embarrassed father."

(86)  1930  "To my knowledge, the Bruning regime was the first essay and model of a form of government that has since been copied in many European countries:  the semidictatorship in the name, and in defense, of democracy against fully fledged dictatorship.  Anyone who takes the trouble to study Bruning's rule in depth will find all those factors that make this sort of government the inevitable forerunner of the very thing it is supposed to prevent:  its discouragement of its own supporters;  the way it undermines its own position;  its acceptance of a loss of freedom;  its lack of ideological weapons against enemy propaganda;  the way it surrenders the initiative;  and its collapse at the final moment when the issue is reduced to a simple question of power."

(91)  "In many respects the atmosphere in Germany resembled that which prevails today in Europe as a whole:  a passive waiting for the inevitable, still hoping to avoid it up to the last moment."

(103)  1933  "Even some of those who became Nazis at this time did not fully realize what they were doing.  They might think that they stood for nationalism and socialism, were against the Jews and for the pre-1914-18 status quo, and many of them secretly looked forward to a new public adventure, a repeat of 1923.  Still, they expected all that to take the humane forms usual in a civilized nation.  Most of them would have been deeply shocked if one had suggested that what they really stood for were torture chambers and officially decreed pogroms (to name but two of the most obvious things, and these are certainly not yet the final horrific culmination).  Even today there are Nazis who are shocked and alarmed if this is pointed out to them."

(118-119)  Reichstag fire  "Outside, against a flaming backdrop, like a Wagnerian Wotan, Hitler uttered the memorable words, 'If this is the work of the Communists, _which I do not doubt_, may God have mercy on them!'  We had no inkling of all that.  The radio was switched off.  Around midnight we sleepily took the night buses to our various homes,  At that very moment the raiding parties were already on their way to get their victims out of bed, in the first great wave of concentration-camp arrests:  left-wing deputies and literary figures, unpopular doctors, officials, and lawyers.

"It was only the next morning that I read about the fire, and not until midday that I read about the arrests.  Around the same time a decree of Hindenburg's was promulgated.  It abolished freedom of speech and confidentiality of the mail and telephone for all private individuals, while giving the police unrestricted rights of search and access, confiscation and arrest.  That afternoon men with ladders went around, honest workmen, covering campaign posters with plain white paper.  All parties of the left had been prohibited from any further election publicity.  Those newspapers that still appeared reported all this in a fawning, fervently patriotic, jubilant tone.  We had been saved!  Germany was free!  Next Saturday all Germans would come together in a festival of national exaltation, their hearts swelling with gratitude!  Get the torches and flags out!."

(128)  March 1933  "These elections, the last that were ever held in prewar Germany, brought the Nazis only 44 percent of the votes (in the previous elections they had achieved 37 percent).  The majority was still against the Nazis.  If you consider that terror was in full swing, that the parties of the left had been prohibited from all public activity in the decisive final week before the elections, you have to admit that the German people as a whole had behaved quite decently.  However, it made no difference at all.  The defeat was celebrated like a victory, the terror intensified, the celebrations multiplied.  Flags never left the windows for a whole fortnight."

(144)  Nazism as an infection, "the wolf virus" 

(151)  The day they threw the Jews out of the law courts  "Meanwhile a brown shirt approached me and took up position in front of my worktable.  'Are you Aryan?'  Before I had a chance to think, I said, 'Yes.'  He took a close look at my nose - and retired.  The blood shot to my face.  A moment too late I felt the shame, the defeat.  I had said 'Yes'!  Well, in God's name I was indeed an 'Aryan.'   I had not lied, I had allowed something much worse to happen.  What a humiliation, to have answered the unjustified question as to whether I was 'Aryan' so easily, even if the fact was of no importance to me!  What a disgrace to buy, with a reply, the right to stay with my documents in peace!  I had been caught unawares, even now,  I had failed my very first test.  I could have slapped myself."

(155)  "We were not equal to the situation, even as victims.  If you will allow me this generalization, it is one of the uncanny aspects of events in Germany that the deeds have no doers and the suffering has no martyrs.  Everything takes place under a kind of anesthesia.  Objectively dreadful deeds produce a thin, puny emotional response.  Murders are committed like schoolboy pranks.  Humiliation and moral decay are accepted like minor incidents.  Even death under torture only produces the response 'Bad luck.'"

(185)  "Today the political struggle is expressed by the choice of what a person eats and drinks, whom he loves, what he does in his spare time, whose company he seeks, whether he smiles or frowns, what he reads, what pictures he hangs on his walls,  It is here that the battles of the next world war are being decided in advance.  That may sound grotesque, but it is the truth."

(199-200)  "The plight of non-Nazi Germans in the summer of 1933 was certainly one of the most difficult a person can find himself in:  a condition in which one is helplessly, utterly overwhelmed, accompanied by the shock of having been caught completely off balance.  We were in the Nazis' hands for good or ill.  All lines of defense had fallen, any collective resistance had become impossible.  Individual resistance was only a form of suicide.  We were pursued into the farthest corners of our private lives;  in all areas of life there was rout, panic, and flight.  No one could tell where it would end.  At the same time we were called upon, not to surrender, but to renege.  Just a little pact with the devil - and you were no longer one of the captured quarry.  Instead you were one of the victorious hunters."

(213- 217)  A conversation in the law study group  "It happened just after the murders in Copenick.  Brock and Holz came to our meeting like murderers fresh from the deed.  Not that they had taken part in the slaughter themselves, but it was obviously the topic of the day in their new circles.  They had clearly convinced themselves that they were in some way accomplices.  Into our civilized, middle-class atmosphere of cigarettes and coffee cups the two of them brought a strange, bloodred cloud of sweaty death.

"They started to speak of the matter immediately.  It was from their graphic descriptions that we found out what had actually happened.  The press had only contained hints and intimations.

"'Fantastic, what happened in Copenick yesterday, eh?'  began Brock, and that was the tone of his narrative.  He went into detail, explained how the women and children had been sent into a neighboring room before the men were shot point-blank with a revolver, bludgeoned with a truncheon, or stabbed with an SA dagger.   Surprisingly, most of them had put up no resistance, and made sorry figures in their nightshirts.  The bodies had been tipped into the river and many were still being washed ashore in the area today.  His whole narrative was delivered with that brazen smile on his face which had recently become a stereotypical feature.  He made no attempt to defend the actions, and obviously did not see much need to.  He regarded them primarily as sensational.

"We found it all dreadful and shook our heads, which seemed to give him some satisfaction.

"'And you see no difficulty with your new party membership because of these things?' I remarked at last.

"Immediately he became defensive and his face took on a bold Mussolini expression.  'No, not at all,' he declared.  'Do you feel pity for these people?  The man who shot first the day before yesterday knew that it would cost him his life, of course.  It would have been bad form not to hang him.  Incidentally, he has my respect.  As for the others - shame on them.  Why didn't they put up a fight?  They were all longtime Social Democrats and members of the Eiserne Front [non-Communist leftist semimilitary group].  Why should they be lying in their beds in their nightshirts?  They should have defended themselves and died decently.  But they're a limp lot.  I have no sympathy for them.'

"'I don't know,' I said slowly, 'whether I feel much pity for them, but what I do feel is an indescribable sense of disgust at people who go around heavily armed and slaughter defenseless victims.'

"'They should have defended themselves,' said Brock stubbornly.  'Then they wouldn't have been defenseless.  That is a disgusting Marxist trick, being defenseless, when it gets serious.'

"At this point Holz intervened.  'I consider the whole thing a regrettable revolutionary excess,' he said, 'and between you and me, I expect the responsible officer to be disciplined.  But I also think that it should not be overlooked that it was a Social Democrat who shot first.  It is understandable, and in a certain sense even justified, that under these circumstances the SA takes, er, very energetic countermeasures.'

"It was curious.  I could just about stand Brock, but Holz had become a red rag to me.  I could not help myself.  I felt compelled to insult him.

"'It is most interesting for me to hear your new theory of justification,' I said.  'If I am not mistaken, you did once study law?'

"He gave me a steely look and elaborately picked up the gauntlet.  'Yes, I have studied law,' he said slowly, 'and I remember that I heard something about state self-defense there.  Perhaps you missed that lecture.'

"'State self-defense,' I said, 'interesting.  You consider that the state is under attack because a few hundred Social Democrat citizens put on nightshirts and go to bed?'

"'Of course not,' he said.  'You keep forgetting it was a Social Democrat who first shot two SA men -'

"'- who had broken into his home.'

"'Who had entered his abode in the course of their official duty.'

"'And that allows the state the justification of self-defense against any other citizens?  Against me and you?'

"'Not against me,' he said, 'but perhaps against you.'

"He was now looking at me with really steely eyes and I had a funny feeling in the back of my knees.

"'You,' he said, 'are always niggling and willfully ignoring the monumental developments in the resurgence of the German people that are taking place today.'  (I can hear the very word 'resurgence' to this day!)  'You grasp at every little excess and split legal hairs to criticize and find fault.  You seem to be unaware, I fear, that today people of your ilk represent a latent danger for the state, and that the state has the right and the duty to react accordingly - at the very least when one of you goes so far as to dare to offer open resistance.'

"Those were his words, soberly and slowly spoken in the style of a commentary on the Civil Code.  All the while he looked at me with those steely eyes.

"'If we are dealing in threats,' I said, 'then why not openly?  Do you intend to denounce me to the Gestapo?'

"About here Von Hagen and Hirsch began to titter, attempting to turn it all into a joke.  This time, however, Holz put a spanner in the works.  Quietly and deliberately (and it was only now that I realized, with a certain unexpected satisfaction, how deeply angered he was):

"'i admit that for sometime I have been wondering whether that is not my duty.'

"'Oh," I said.  I needed a few moments to taste all the different flavors on my tongue:  a little surprise, a little admiration for how far he was prepared to go, a little sourness from the word 'duty,' a little satisfaction at how far I had driven him, and a new cool insight:  that is the way life is now, and that is how it has changed - and a little fear.  having made a quick assessment of what he might be able to say about me, if he went through with it, I said, 'I must say that it does not speak for the seriousness of your intentions that you have been thinking about it for some time, only to tell me the result of your thoughts.'

"'Don't say that,' he said quietly.  Now all the trumps had been played and to raise the stakes further we would have had to become physical."

(223)  "The Germany that was 'my country' and the country of those like me was not just a blob on the map of Europe.  It was characterized by certain distinctive attributes:  humanity, openness on all sides, philosophical depth of thought, dissatisfaction with the world and oneself, the courage always to try something fresh and to abandon it if need be, self-criticism, truthfulness, objectivity, severity, rigor, variety, a certain ponderousness but also delight in the freest improvisation, caution and earnestness but also a playful richness of invention, engendering ever new ideas that it quickly rejects as invalid, respect for originality, good nature, generosity, sentimentality, musicality, and above all freedom, something roving, unfettered, soaring, weightless, Promethean.  Secretly we were proud that in the realm of the spirit our country was the land of unlimited possibilities.  Be that as it may, this was the country we felt attached to, in which we were at home.

"This Germany has been destroyed and trampled underfoot by the nationalist, and it has at least become clear who its deadliest enemy was:  German nationalism itself and the German Reich.  To stay loyal to it and belong to it, one had to have the courage to recognize this fact - and all its consequences."

(229)  "It is a commonly held belief that caution is just as dangerous as recklessness, and that caution deprives one of the pleasure of taking risks.  Incidentally, everything I have experienced in my life reinforces the truth of this perception."

(242)  Remark overheard on the Nazi take-over of the Christian church  "For pity's sake, now we even have to fight for the faith that we don't have."

(257)  In order to qualify for his court exams, Haffner had to spend time in a Nazi training camp  "Four weeks later I was wearing jackboots and a uniform with a swastika armband, and spent many hours each day marching in a column in the vicinity of Juterbog.  Along with all the others, I chorused 'Do You See the Sunrise in the East' or 'Heathlands of Brandenburg' and other marching songs.  We even had a flag - with a swastika, of course - and sometimes this flag was carried before us.  When we came through villages, the people on either side of the road raised their arms to greet the flag, or disappeared quickly into some house entrance.  They did this because they had learned that if they did not, we, that is I, would beat them up.  It made not the slightest difference that I - and, no doubt, many another among us - fled into entryways to avoid these flags, when we were not marching behind them.  Now we were the ones embodying an implicit threat of violence against all bystanders.  They greeted the flag or disappeared.  For fear of us.  For fear of me.

"I still feel dizzy when I consider my predicament then.  It was the Third Reich in a nutshell."

(261)  The SA officer  "I cannot say that he made an unpleasant impression.  He was a small, dainty, brown-haired young man with lively eyes, not a bullyboy.  But I noticed a peculiar expression on his face - it was not even particularly disagreeable, but it reminded me of something and it bothered me.  Suddenly I remembered:  it was exactly the expression of brazen audacity that Brock had worn ever since had had become a Nazi."

(267-268)  "The worst came when he had finished.  A fanfare signaled the national anthem, and we all raised our arms.  A few hesitated like me, it was so dreadful shaming.  But did we want to sit our examinations, or not/  For the first time, I had the feeling, so strong it left a taste in my mouth, 'this doesn't count.  This isn't me.  It doesn't count,' and with this feeling I, too, raised my arm and held it stretched out ahead of me, for about three minutes.  That is the combined length of 'Deutschland uber alles' and the 'Horst Wessel Song.'  Most of us sang along, droning jerkily.  I moved my lips a little and mimed singing, as one does with hymns in church.

"But we all had our arms stretched out, and in this pose we stood facing the radio set, which had pulled these arms out like a puppeteer manipulates the arms of his marionettes, and we all sang or pretended to do so, each one of us the Gestapo of the others."

NB:  Are you going to act as the Gestapo for yourself?

(272)  "Finally, there was  a typically German aspiration that began to influence us strongly, although we hardly noticed it.  This was the idolization of proficiency for its own sake, the desire to do whatever you are assigned to do as well as it can possibly be done.  However senseless, meaningless, or downright humiliating it may be, it should be done as efficiently, thoroughly, and faultlessly as could be imagined."

(279-280)  "What about me?  I notice that I have not had occasion to use the word 'I' in my story for quite a while.  I have used either the third person or the first person plural;  there has been no opportunity to use the first person singular.  That is no accident.  It was one of the points - perhaps _the_ point - of what was happening to us in the camp that the individual person each of us represented played no part and was completely sidelined.  That just did not count.  Things were quite deliberately arranged so that the individual had no room for maneuver.  What one represented, what one's opinions were in 'private' and 'actually,' was of no concern and set aside, put on ice, as it were.  On the other hand, in moments when one had the leisure to think of one's individuality - perhaps if one awoke at night in the midst of the multifarious snoring of one's comrades - one had a feeling that what was actually happening, in which one participated mechanically, had no real existence or validity.  It was only in these hours that one could attempt to call oneself morally to account and prepare a last position of defense for one's inner self."

(282)  "Or the other day when somebody else - otherwise a pleasant comrade - had talked about the trial of those accused of setting the Reichstag fire and said, 'I don't really believe they're guilty.  But what does that matter?  There are enough witnesses against them.  So why not just chop off their heads and be done with it.  A few more or less don't make any difference.'  (He said it pleasantly, without rancor.)

"What can one say to that?  There is no answer.  The only answer is to take an axe to the person's head who said it.  Just so.  But me with an axe?  Besides the man who said it is quite decent otherwise."

(285-288)  "To start with the essential point comradeship completely destroys the sense of responsibility for oneself, be it in the civilian or, worse still, the religious sense.  A man bedded in comradeship is relieved of all personal worries, and of the rigors of the struggle for life.  He has his bed in the barracks, his meals, and his uniform.  His daily life is prescribed from morning to night.  He need not concern himself with anything.  He lives, not under the severe rule of 'each for himself,' but in the generous softness of 'one for all and all for one.'  It is often of the most unpleasant falsehoods that the laws of comradeship are harder than those of ordinary civilian life.  On the contrary, they are of a debilitating softness, and they are justified only for soldiers in the field, for men facing death.  Only the threat of death justifies and makes this egregious dispensation from responsibility acceptable.  Indeed, it is a familiar story that brave soldiers, who have been too long bedded on the soft cushions of comradeship, often find it impossible to cope with the harshness of civilian life.

"It is even worse that comradeship relieves men of responsibility for their actions, before themselves, before God, before their consciences,  they do what all their comrades do.  They have no choice.  They have no time for thought (except when they unfortunately wake up at night).  Their comrades are their conscience and give absolution for everything, provided they do what everybody else does...."

"It was comradeship, which in a few weeks in a camp at Juterbog had molded us -Referendars [court officials], after all, with an intellectual, academic education, future judges - into an unthinking, indifferent, irresponsible mass, in which sayings like those about Paris or the Reichstag fire were commonplace, went unanswered, and set the intellectual tone.  Comradeship always sets the cultural tone at the lowest possible level, accessible to everyone.  It cannot tolerate discussion;  in the chemical solution of comradeship, discussion immediately takes on the color of whining and grumbling.  It becomes a mortal sin.  Comradeship admits no thoughts, just mass feelings, of the most primitive sort - these, on the other hand, are inescapable, to try and evade them is to put oneself beyond the pale.  How familiar were the attitudes that governed our camp comradeship absolutely and irrevocably!  
They were not really the official Nazi party line, they certainly had a Nazi character.  They were the attitudes we had had as boys during the Great War, which had dominated the Rennbund [an informal sports group] and the athletics clubs in t he Stresemann era.  A few Nazi-specific ideas had not yet taken root.  For instance 'we' were still not virulently anti-Semitic.  But 'we' were not prepared to make an issue of it.  That was a trifle.  Who could take ti seriously?  'We' had become a collective entity, and with all the intellectual cowardice and dishonesty of a collective being we instinctively ignored or belittled anything that could disturb our collective self-satisfaction.  A German Reich in microcosm.

"It was remarkable how comradeship actively decomposed all the elements of individuality and civilization.  The most important part of individual life, which cannot be subsumed in communal life, is love.  So comradeship has its special weapon against love:  smut.  Every evening in bed, after the last patrol round, there was the ritual reciting of lewd songs and jokes.  That is a hard and fast rule of male comradeship, and nothing is more mistaken than the widely held opinion that this is a safety valve for frustrated erotic or sexual feelings. These songs and jokes do not have an erotic, arousing effect.  On the contrary, they make the act of love appear as unappetizing as possible.  They treat it like digestion and defecation, and make it an object of ridicule.  The men who recited rude songs and used coarse words for female body parts were in effect denying that they had ever had tender feelings or been in love, that they had ever made themselves attractive, behaved gently, and used sweet words for these same parts... They were rough, tough and above such civilized tenderness."

(292)  "Nevertheless, the condition of comradeship, dangerous as it is, has its weak point - as does every condition that is based on deception, doping, and mumbo-jumbo. The moment, namely, that its external requisites are missing, it disappears into thin air.  That has been observed many thousand times, even with genuine, legitimate, wartime comradeships:  men who in the trenches would have given their lives for one another, and more than once shared their last cigarette, feel the greatest shyness and inhibitions when they meet again as civilians - and it is _not_ the civilian meeting that is deceptive and illusory."