Saturday, July 8, 2006

Level Playing Field

Google did the pictures

Level Playing Field

My parents and grandparents all believed in using the level playing field; in all meetings and especially in discussions. What is it about?

It's about having an environment where everyone's opinion is heard  and in equal amounts. Everyone's thoughts are given weight.

Clearly one has to give a certain time limit (or space limit) to the thoughts expressed equally and Robert's Rule of Order come to mind.

What is the point of the meeting?

The point of this meeting of the minds is to instill integrity and respect in the meeting. Everyone feels at home.

The second point is always to try to learn something new from the other side and to incorporate it into your own vision of the world.

A third point is that, since everyone is at ease and no one has anything to prove, one can gain ground as a group and one can reach conclusions that hereto have been hidden.

What do you think about a Level Playing Field?

Would you want this philosophy used when you had ametting to attend? why or why not?




plittle said...

On the topic of religion, there is no such thing as a level playing field. There are only solitary plateaus with infinite gulfs between them. I'm lying, of course. That is only people's perception of the subject.

sugar1337 said...

I think that if you are having a discussion with friends or open-minded people than a level playing field is possible.   However, if you get a bunch of judgmental or close-minded people together then it is not possible.  It would be especially hard when it comes to hard-pressed issues like religion, abortion, the death penalty, politics, and things of that nature.

aleclynch said...

As Sugar said, I can see this working in *some* situations.   Friends having a casual conversation...families having a meeting to work something out and so forth.  

However, there are some situations where this concept is actually damaging in my opinion.  The media, for instance, sometimes has an unhealthy tendancy to "fairly" present all opinions on an issue when it is not appropriate.  

I like how the following cartoons makes my point:

There are times where someone's opinion is more valid than another's.  If we're having a conversation with people about race relations, do we really want everyone to listen just as attentively to the white supremacist and "incorporate it into your own vision of the world.  

Please don't think I'm trying to attack or belittle the suggested philosophy.  I just think it would only be appropriate in some (many?) situations, but not all.


lurkynat said...

Dearest Paul, Sugar and Drew,
Ahhhh! Sadly since we all wrote here Israel and the jihad(terrorists) in Lebanon
are seriously trying to kill each other... sigh...
Perhaps in this case Muslims who want peace and Israelis who want peace can meet in a serious way for justice and peace somehow...with an intermediary from another country...
I think that a level playing field is jsut about all we have going to try to bring some settlements...notably..that is teh only way some wars are ever won... by serious involvemetn howver difficult of one group wiht another. hugs and please respond
thanks for the comments

sugar1337 said...

Peace conferences and the like have been tried in other situations before, but they are largely only for "face value" and usually don't last long-term.  

plittle said...

  For those Muslims and Jews who desire peace, there exists an effective method of attaining it: move the f#%k out of the middle east. There will never be peace in that area of the world because both sides contest the region based on nothing but religious tradition. Unfortunately, the USA is in bed with Israel, and the absolute best thing they could do right now is to offer no opinion whatsoever on the current conflict...oops, too late for that. The White House has already made comments sure to further enrage the arab world.

lurkynat said...

Dear Paul,
Where should the Israelis move???? The entirety of Europe, Canada and US moved them to Israel!
I think that the US has tremendous friends in the Arab and in the Jewish world Paul.
any other suggestions?

lurkynat said...

Dear Coco,
Ah!!! :)
What do you suggest we do?

sugar1337 said...

I honestly think sometimes that wars have been going on so long that there is truly no stopping then until they have run their course, and sometimes that might be forever or until they destroy themselves, but I feel if they are meant to end that something will happen that will change them.