› Forums › Intelligent Kindness – Rehabilitating the Welfare State › Chapter 1 – The Heart of the Matter
July 27, 2020 at 9:41 am #1139
Origins of the welfare state in the Beveridge report
Where Now? – Kinship and its shadow
Ideas to guide us – Intelligent Kindness is relational and responsive; self interest and the interests of other are bound together; directing out attention to connecting with and being responsive to others; genuine or authentic kindness as an improvisation rather than the performance of a routine
The Task in Hand – Intelligent Kindness as a lens. Written from experience and backed up with evidence – but experience led…
To think more about kindness…July 31, 2020 at 1:14 pm #1204
I was struck by the need, or choice, of Government to use legislation to compel citizens to take on the formal responsibility for the welfare of each other.
Compelled into kindness?
Legislation gave powers to government to fund and organise welfare services. A sense of obligation or duty felt by those in power – times have changed…? Perhaps now we would look at devolving the responsibility for organising to more local organisations?
War also bought a recognition of the need for kinship…we needed each other…How can we re-establish this sense of mutuality?
The gap between the vision/sentiment and its execution. Perhaps we focus too much on implementation and not enough on visions and sentiments?
Inequality regional, global and within communities increased massively…July 31, 2020 at 2:40 pm #1205
the value and effectiveness of such help, however technical or practical, has depended on the capacity of the helper to connect with the other personally. Everyone knows that help, whatever else it involves, is fundamentally relational and that good results emerge from the quality of the collaboration between the helpers and the people helped.
If this is true – where does that leave us with digital by default?
What is the role of algorithms, machine learning and AI IF the helping relationship is essentially one of mutual responsiveness?August 7, 2020 at 9:10 am #1218Lucy HamptonParticipant
Just started today.
I do agree about kinship and the difference between ‘we’ societies and I societies. We moved much further into being an I society during and after Thatcher. Culturally its becoming more and more about individual success at the expense of others (few very rich people). I think we have forgotten that in the grand scheme of human evolution living well (without illness and with enough) is a relatively new concept and is fragile. For many of us, the welfare state has been the background of our lives without having to think much about it. Alcoholism was rife for the lower classes in the Victorian era as a way of getting through the day – now Alcoholism is back, with many more functional alcoholics as a way of coping with stress. Both were about self medication.
I’m wondering if re-connection and valuing is intevitably about changing the conversation. The arguments about how effective or not, too many mangaer (less than any other comparable industry) – unless we can talk about it without judgement and without defensiveness then we won’t be able to move forward until the crisis point forces change. And then that will be change that won’t be a ‘kinship’ type discussion about what is best for society (and the economy as a whole). It will be change driven by a political ideology (neoliberalism vs everything else).August 8, 2020 at 2:33 pm #1224
Hi Lucy – glad you made it in! I/we societies reminds me of Buber’s ideas of I and Thou relationships too, and a perspective that says, rather than having our own life, we participate in life. We all participate in the same life…
Martin Buber and what makes us ‘real’ to each other – https://www.brainpickings.org/2018/03/18/i-and-thou-martin-buber/August 16, 2020 at 2:23 pm #1228Rachel PillingParticipant
Measurement: if we are asking individuals to make change; be different; behave with kindness and kinship: then the system in which they work needs to adapt the way it measures success.
How can the systems in which kind people work promote, support and enhance it effectiveness – make it easy to be kind. The system presents opportunities, not barriers, to kindness.
And why is it that kindness and productivity are seen as opposing forces? As if by taking time to be kind is distracting from the industrial business of ‘making people better’.
Kindness is a SKILL – not a feeling. How do we classify, recognise, value, head-hunt kindness in the same way as leadership, time-management, conflict resolution. Kindness is perceived as naive, fragile, virtuous. Pitied even – kind people are showing some sort of weakness or vulnerability. How can we shift it to become the root, foundation stone, ballast of our lives.August 20, 2020 at 11:21 am #1240
The story of Timo surely shows that kindness is cost effective?
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