Rutger Bregman: De meeste mensen deugen



To be honest I picked p this book to hate read it I thought it would be Pinker and and that Lars guy saying how everything is better now and will everyone just shut Christmas, Actually up sort of stuff But I actually really loved the book that is I loved the first 23rds of the book The last 13rd was way too cute and optimistic for my cold cynical heart The book is not making the claim that Pinker is making The book is a point by point debunking of a Hobbsian worldview and the sham studies and stories that havepheld it This is important because this bleak worldview has led The Tycoons Stowaway us into bad policies and behaviors because we assume that if the police state was slackened there would be absolute mayhem and murder in the streets That is just not true Rutger Bregman returns with one of the most anticipated nonfiction titles of the year What makes this such a fantas This book has taken me nearly two months to read not because it was difficult to read it s not it s beautifully written and translated but because the ideas reuiredite so long to process fully I don t know if anyone has spoken to me in the last two months and NOT had me recommend this book to them wholeheartedly even when I was only about a hundred pages in It is like reading a book that confirms and reinforces through meticulous research discussion and sourcing a secret truth I have wanted to believe deep down all along But it took these two months and I imagine much longer still to begin dismantling the ideas society has ingrained in me I can t write a good review of this book because it would essentially mean rewriting the book I have nothing to add nothing further to discuss I just want to put it in people s hands and let it change their lives And I believe Rutger Bregman is right it is easy to be a cynic to scoff and scorn kindness It s hard to be kind because it means taking responsibility it means believing that your actions are worthwhile when it is easier to believe that there is no point in trying the world s fucked anyway I dare you to believe that it s not true I dare you to be an optimist or as Rutger Bregman would have it a realist This is a challenging book to read It does not shy away from the darker sides of humanity But it is ltimately hopeful and the people begin to change their minds and believe that humans are not inherently bad the better Some great stories but anecdotes don t make a sustained argument and the whole isn t entirely convincing Even so it s the perfect time for a healthy dose of optimism and if there s anything this book does well it s showing how hope and positivity can breed So go forth and be the good you want to see in the world You might just inspire others to do the sameARC via Netgalley An idealist can be right her whole life and still be dismissed as naive This book is intended to change that Because what seems nreasonable A Most Unusual Match unrealistic and impossible today can turn out to be inevitable tomorrow It is time for a new realism It is time for a new view of humankind With the subtitle A Hopeful History Humankind is exactly the kind of optimistic read I think I needed right now With so much negative going on I keep hearing What do you expect People are the worst a plague on the Earth And not only does that not solve anything but it s so fatalistic as to suggest that nothing short of total human extinction could solve anything With this new review of human history Rutger Bregman not only busts a bunch of myths and especially those based on social science experiments about how rotten we humans are at the core but by adding in stories of human decency and exploring some better ways of settingp entrenched institutions Bregman shines a light on a hopeful way forward If the nocebo effect If we believe most people can t be trusted that s how we ll treat each other to everyone s detriment is as powerful as Bregman suggests then a book like this that proves that humans are not basically evil is the first step towards building the society that works better for everyone Just what I needed Note I read an ARC from NetGalley and passages Jedidiahs Bride (Lancaster County Weddings uoted may not be in their final forms There is a persistent myth that by their very nature humans are selfish aggressive andick to panic It s what Dutch biologist Frans de Waal likes to call Veneer theory the notion that civilization is nothing than a thin veneer that will crack at the merest provocation In actuality the opposite is true It s when crisis hits when the bombs fall or the floodwaters rise that we humans become our best selves For most of this study Bregman reviews what famous thinkers philosophers social psychology researchers and recent pop historians have written often finding source material that contradicts what we ve been led to believe their evidence shows Bregman starts with the opposite philosophical poles of Hobbes The man who asserted that civil society alone could save s from our baser instincts and Rousseau Who declared that in our heart of hearts we re all good and that civilization is what ruins s Bregman decidedly comes out on the side of Rousseau and from recent times on the side of Yuval Noah Harari of Sapiens fame who all believe that the dawn of agriculture was the downfall of happy human co existence and Bregman even takes issue with Steven Pinker and his hopeful books about how violence has decreased over time because according to Bregman there s zero evidence to support the widely accepted idea that nomadichunter gatherer societies were anything but peaceful To counter the dim but popular view of Swept Away (Harlequin Blaze uncontrolled humanity in William Golding s Lord of the Flies Bregman recounts the true story of a group of six Tongan boys who survived on a deserted island for over a year by creating a totally egalitarian society to dispute the notion that men are jingoistic warmongers he shares the incredible stats about how few soldiers in the major wars actually fired their weapons to try and explain why it was the comparatively weak and smaller brained Homo sapiens who survived out of several competing hominids in prehistory Bregmanses a recent study on the domestication of foxes to suggest that it came down to survival of the friendliest If nothing else Humankind is a fascinating and wide ranging collection of stories I m going to be honest Originally I wanted to b Some books reach you at the right time and this book did exactly that To be fair the right time for a book offering a hopeful optimistic view of humankind to reach me wasn t that small of a window I ve been noticing how I an Texan for the Holidays (Brodys Crossing, usually optimistic person in my day to day life have become increasingly cynical when it comes to my fellow humans And can you blame me in this economy this pandemic this global climate crisis this political turmoil etc etc etcJust like I know you can t blame me for losing hope in humanity I also know there are many who feel the same so I can t be thankful enough for Bregman and his almost suspicious optimism to come around the corner with this book and the many receipts that show that yes humanity has aestionable record no reason in denying that but contrary to what has sadly become popular belief most of Too Wild to Hold (Legendary Lovers us are actually pretty ok even than ok There are good people and they re not the exception And there s definitely enough of a reason to keep hope alive Remember that cynicism is just another word for laziness It s an excuse not to take responsibility Because if you believe most people are rotten you don t need to get workedp about injustice The From the author of New York Times bestseller UTOPIA FOR REALISTS a revolutionary argument that the innate goodness and cooperation of human beings has been the greatest factor in our successIf one basic principle has served as the bedrock of bestselling author Rutger Bregman's thinking it is that every progressive idea whether it was the abolition of slavery the advent of democracy women's suffrage or the ratification of marriage euality was once considered radical and dangerous by the mainstream opinion of its time With Humankind he brings that mentality to bear against one of our most entrenched ideas namely that human beings are by nature selfish and self interestedBy providing a new histori.

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Orld is going to hell either way In Humankind A Hopeful History Bregman discusses many of the studies in psychology that seemed to have cemented the idea that humanity is pretty much a lost cause That if briefly left to our own devices we turn The Man from Her Past (Welcome to Honesty, ugly and mean As it turns out many of these studies were rigged or forged to suit a certain preferred narrative If a study proves that people are kind of ok where s the controversy in that Where s the exposure the fame the renown Ah but prove that people are just one step away from turning into savages there s a headline But it s not only scholars and their rigged studies that Bregman discusses He also mentions real life events that corroborated this pessimistic view of people Turns out what the media had reported wasn t all that close to the truth And not necessarily because they didn t have all the facts but rather because some facts got in the way of the narrative that has become the most suitable narrative that with the highest shock value and wereickly dismissed and forgotten But the people behind Facebook Twitter and Google know you well They know what shocks and horrifies you they know what makes you click They know how to grab your attention and hold it so they can serve you the most lucrative helping of personalised ads But than Bregman s argument about there being hope for humankind what I appreciate most of this book is the way his optimism and drive to see things in a better light rubbed off on me As I mentioned earlier I ve become and cynical and while some people may have come to terms with or even like being that way I don t I didn t know just how much I wanted to fight that growing cynicism The Naturalists Daughter until I started reading this book and could feel that desire to believe in a better kinder world rekindle Perhaps my eagerness to believe Bregman s arguments has clouded my judgement and I know this whole review may sound too sugary but whatcha gonna doBregman starts his book by saying that at its core this is about a radical idea That idea isn t just that people are pretty decent Because if his radical idea holds true and if we allows to believe it if we approach others trying to believe the best instead of the worst if our default shifts from distrust to trust if we behave towards those around The Weather Girl us as if we expected them to be decent even good even nice they may in turn start to behave in a decent even good even nice way This is a form of the Pygmalion Effect a phenomenon wherein high expectations lead to improved performance Unsurprisingly the contrary also holds true Expect the worst of someone and you may benknowingly helping to make the worst become true It s also one of the insidious mechanisms behind racism because when you re subjected to low expectations you won t perform at your best which further diminishes other s expectations and further diminishes your performance Sure not everyone will prove to be a sweetheart or a genius in disguise and one person expecting the best of others won t turn our world into a Disney musical But Bregman says and I want to believe him that there s to gain than to lose in adopting a positive set of mind And wouldn t it be nice to go around expecting not a scowl but a smile and giving one in turn You know that person who s always so happy no matter what Maybe it s the colleague who is bright and cheery at 800 every Monday morning when everyone else is struggling just to open their eyes and get their third cup of coffee down Or that really annoying person who always A Husband in Time urges you to look on the bright side Oh your arm fell off No worries you have another Oh your second arm fell off too Well just think of all the fun you re going to have lear Bregmans book is immensely populair at this moment in Holland The central thesis is clear from the title freely translated Most people are OK Bregmans is a journalist and historic from Holland who gained fame by explicitering the need for tax reforms at Davos In this book he argues that most people are OK in two different ways1 By summarizing study results that proof our good nature that is an preference for social cooperative behaviour and aversion to violence2 Secondly by trashing exemplary research into the dark human nature and present examples that show the good nature of humansFor me his thesis is ridiculous In our daily life we approach most people like they are OK We don t distrust our colleagues when they asked for help and there are always people standingp in public transport to free a seat for those who need it These are the kind examples he gives of good behaviourStill maybe this is not the kind of behaviour Bregmans wants to talk about In the beginning of the book he states from an personal email of a After Hours university teacher that 97% of people belief that we are inclined to act fully in self interest in panic situationsHowever for this argument the research he presents is less convincing This is because the proof of our good nature falls mostly in the category a la caf and because he is not able to explicate these results in an synthesized frameworkSecondly because by trashing the research methods of ie Zimbardo s prison experiment where splittingp a group into prisoners and guards results into violence he claims to prove that people are not inclined to show bad behavior This however is false reasoning since the results of the Zimbardo experiment where always a presentation of how the context can make people bad This is still standing even if the researches career driven lying pricks where pushing for escalation They where just a power structure within the contextAs Rutger Bregman states he hopes to follow Bentrand Russel s maxim to never get distracted by what he believes It is a pity that he doesn t live The Innocents Dark Seduction up to this As he states in the preface his goal in this book is not to prove that people are angels that we have an preference for te good p31 He fails to do this because He fails to make proper conclusions but merely summarizes a lot of research which is interesting for sure But not explicitly derive the conclusion that this means we are inclined to do the good in panic situations This leaves him with the meaningless proposition that most people are most of the time OK What do you mean OK When are we not OK What does this mean for our OKness in general This defect of the book was for me compensated by the last couple of chapters where theestion is no longer the prove of the central thesis but how vitreous behavior can be stimulated The From Father to Son (A Brothers Word uestion of evil is never aestion of Haunted (After Moonrise (After Moonrise (Connected to Possessed by PC Cast) - Book 2) uantity but ofality One person starting a fight in a bar can ruin the night for 30 OK people Magnifying the good intentions of the rest is not the point here He does not address this but talks as if bad an good are leveled in eual measure For example the good behavior of a lot of people during WO II does not lessen the fact of the HolocaustIt is noteworthy that this book is so popular Why so De meeste mensen deugen is written in a way that makes you feel like a marathon runner You just kill the thing in a few hours and this made me feel good indeedBut this cannot be the only reason What got my attention is the dualism created in the book between we the 99% and the leaders scientist and politicians the 1% The most people are OK but leaders oef the chances are high that they are psychopaths In this way this book is a warm blanket that works as a sedative We don t have to feel guilty because we are inclined to the good1So should you read this book I th. Cal perspective of the last 200000 years of human history Bregman sets out to prove that we are in fact evolutionarily wired for cooperation rather than competition and that our instinct to trust each other has a firm evolutionary basis going back to the beginning of Homo sapiens Bregman systematically debunks our nderstanding of the Milgram electrical shock experiment the Zimbardo prison experiment and the Kitty Genovese bystander effectIn place of these he offers little known true stories the tale of twin brothers on opposing sides of apartheid in South Africa who came together with Nelson Mandela to create peace; a group of six shipwrecked children who survived for a year and a half on a de.

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Ink so Rutger Berman is a great collector of research and is able to summarize the information so you can read it with ease On the other hand be aware that this book is an ideological pamphlet and the results of most research can be interpreted in multiple ways So practice benevolence but not everything is OK and not only the powerful are evil1 This is ideology and false with our direct experience Though we think most people are OK we all now some examples where somebody is as we say in Holland licking p and kicking down Or for me growing p with brothers I showed virtuous behavior as well as evil sadistic behaviour to my younger brothers not something i am proud about Given the now obvious drawbacks of the Electoral College I think this is accurateThe Framers were not really interested in democracy as we now define it but an elective aristocracy Take the American Constitution historians agree it was intrinsically an aristocratic document designed to check the democratic tendencies of the period It was never the American Founding Fathers intention for the general populace to play an active role in politicsWhat Happened to my Late Brother in LawRight out of high school in the mid 60 s my brother in law joined the Marines and was destined to be in the midst of some of the worst fighting in Vietnam including being trapped inside a supposed fortress on a hill in The Battle of Khe Sanh one bungled piece of strategy by General Westland The fortress was pinned down by opposing troops with constant shelling while the rest of their forces carried out the Tet Offensive a total surprise to the Americans The US came very close to losing the war which may have been a good thing Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara had already decided by then that the war was a lost cause although he felt it was important to continue so as to save face War criminal Henry Kissinger would later agree and push to prolong even longer to help Nixon get re electedVietnam has been called The War Without Heroes including my brother in law He came home with severe PTSD and a drinking problem He also chain smoked He would engage in a kind of slow suicide through the heavy se of these substances O Homem Que Ela Ama Odiar Diamante Bruto until he died in a VA hospital in Reno six years ago The author tells this story in his book to reveal something many may not know Not matching thesual Hobbesian assumptions troops on WW II were reluctant to shoot at the enemy The military set out to correct that in future wars first in Korea then in Vietnam The plan was to dehumanize the opposition by portraying them as verminAs the author reports Vietnam recruits were immersed in boot camps that exalted not only a sense of brotherhood but also the most brutal violence forcing the men to scream KILL KILL KILL ntil they were hoarse They were drilled to fire instinctively at realistic human figures Shooting a firearm became an automated Pavlovian reaction you could perform without thinking Second World War veterans most of whom had never learned to kill were shocked when shown images of this brand of trainingThe American military managed to boost its firing ratio increasing it to 95 per cent in Vietnam But this came at a price Not only had Innumerable soldiers only killed other people something inside them had died too This was my brother in law Sullen constantly drinking always trying to fill the hole in his soul with material things and the victim of horrific nightmares DisposableImagine for a moment that a new drug comes on the market It s super addictive and in no time everyone s hooked Scientists investigate and soon conclude that the drug causes I ote a misperception of risk anxiety lower mood levels learned helplessness contempt and hostility towards others and desensitization That drug is the newsHuman beings it turns out are The Midwifes Glass Slipper / Best for the Baby ultra social learning machines We re born to learn to bond and to play This is our true superpower because sociable people aren t only fun to be around in the end they re smarter tooDon t be trapped by dogma which is living with the results of other people s thinking Steve JobsMany ofs are resistant to religious dogma Perhaps there are other sources of dogma we should A Natural Father uestion as well including some that came from my Boomer generationThe Selfish Gene It fit right in with 1970s era thinking a time hailed as the Me Decade by the New York magazine In the late 1990s an avid Richard Dawkins fan decided to put his take on Dawkins ideas into practice Rather than making him feel pessimistic the book inspired CEO Jeffrey Skilling to run an entire corporation the energy giant Enron on the mechanism of greedSkilling setp a Rank Yank system for performance reviews at Enron A score of 1 placed you among the company s top performers and gave you a fat bonus A score of 5 put you at the bottom a group sent to Siberia besides being humiliated if you couldn t find another position within two weeks you were fired The result was a Hobbesian business culture with cut throat competition between employees In late 2001 the news broke that Enron had been engaging in massive accounting fraud When the dust finally settled Skilling was in prisonScience has advanced considerably since the 1970s In subseuent editions of The Selfish Gene Richard Dawkins scrapped his assertions about humans innate selfishness and the theory has lost credence with biologists Humankind is a wonderfully iconoclastic book The book is fluidly written and I have learned a ton My favorite book of the year so farPodcast interview with the author What I find persuasive here is that other countries are operating on different assumptions better assumptions than we are in the US and getting much better results We always make excuses for why we can t change say to implement true gun safety We cling too readily to our cynicism when maybe we are looking at the world all wrong This captures best the flavor of the book than I could in a written reviewhttpspitchforkeconomicscomepisod TO BE HOPEFUL in bad times is not just foolishly romantic It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty but also of compassion sacrifice courage kindnessWhat we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives If we see only the worst it destroys our capacity to do something If we remember those times and places and there are so many where people have behaved magnificently this gives A Doctors Vow us the energy to act and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different directionAnd if we do act in however small a way we don t have to wait for some grandtopian future The future is an infinite succession of presents and to live now as we think human beings should live in defiance of all that is bad around s is itself a marvelous victory Howard Zinn Good book It s a contrarian take on human nature that we re better than evil It basically attempts to counteract the popular takes of various events and human nature experiments It works because it s readable so than many books in the genre I s read about most of the things in this work but there were a few insights I hadn t considered before So I got something new to consider always a plus Of course the danger of this book and any other book on humans is the confirmation bias of author and reader Just don t take all statements and evidence at face value as presented That said I enjoyed this one for the most part and recommend it as a balance to most of the books about human nature out there. Serted island by working together; a study done after World War II that found that as few as 15% of American soldiers were actually capable of firing at the enemyThe ltimate goal of Humankind is to demonstrate that while neither capitalism nor communism has on its own been proven to be a workable social system there is a third option giving citizens and professionals the means left to make their own choices right Reorienting our thinking toward positive and high expectations of our fellow man Bregman argues will reap lasting success Bregman presents this idea with his signature wit and frankness once again making history social science and economic theory accessible and enjoyable for lay reade.

Rutger Bregman is a Dutch historian author and journalist He studied at Utrecht University and the University of California Los Angeles and is known for popularizing topics related to social and economic innovation measures and their history through among others universal basic income and shorter work weeksRutger Bregman is a journalist at The Correspondent and one of Europe's most prominen