Five ‘Ethical Leadership’ Values In James Comey’s Book | GovExec.com


Comey writes about what he calls “ethical leadership” and notes that great companies “obsess over leadership talent—they hunt for it, test it, train it, and make it part of every conversation. They treat leadership talent like money.”

What does Comey see as important components of ethical leadership? Here are five main takeaways:

  1. The best leaders don’t overreact to mistakes and use them as teaching moments.
  2. Leaders create an environment where people want to do their best work.
  3. Leaders value humor that shows both confidence and humility.
  4. Leaders listen to dissenting opinions or facts.
  5. Leaders take the long view.

Source: Five ‘Ethical Leadership’ Values In James Comey’s Book – Management Matters – Management – GovExec.com

The Inside Story of the BICEP2 Experiment


For more than 30 years, inflation remained frustratingly unproven. Some said it couldn’t be proven. But everyone agreed on one thing: If cosmologists could detect a unique pattern in the cosmos’s earliest light, light known as the cosmic microwave background (CMB), a ticket to Stockholm was inevitable.

Imagine finding out the entire IRS is obsessed with your tax return. Not just one rogue auditor, but everyone, from the Secretary of the Treasury on down, fixated on your Form 1040! It was petrifying.

Source: The Inside Story of the BICEP2 Experiment

You thought quantum mechanics was weird: check out entangled time | Aeon Ideas


The problem is that entanglement violates how the world ought to work. Information can’t travel faster than the speed of light, for one.

But in a 1935 paper, Einstein and his co-authors showed how entanglement leads to what’s now called quantum nonlocality, the eerie link that appears to exist between entangled particles.

If two quantum systems meet and then separate, even across a distance of thousands of lightyears, it becomes impossible to measure the features of one system (such as its position, momentum and polarity) without instantly steering the other into a corresponding state.

Source: You thought quantum mechanics was weird: check out entangled time | Aeon Ideas

What lies behind the simplistic image of the happy Buddhist? | Aeon Essays


This diversity of practices and perceptions of them speaks to the fact that, contrary to popular Western perceptions, Tibetan Buddhism is hardly monolithic.

The Dalai Lama is not the pope of all Tibetan Buddhism, as many seem to believe, but the head of one of four major schools, the Gelugpa. The current Dalai Lama just happens to be a particularly famous frontman whose charisma has united diverse Tibetan Buddhists into one movement.

Today, he preaches cooperation between different forms of Tibetan Buddhism, but until the 1970s he embraced the veneration of an exclusively Gelug protector spirit – one that punished anyone who polluted the school with teachings from other traditions.

Source: What lies behind the simplistic image of the happy Buddhist? | Aeon Essays

What is the Commonwealth if not the British Empire 2.0? | The Guardian


In all seriousness, who else other than the heir to the British throne, after all, could be better qualified to lead the contemporary manifestation of the British empire?

It would just be so much easier if all concerned simply admitted this reality: the Commonwealth is a vessel of former colonies with the former imperial master at its helm. Or, as I like to call it, Empire 2.0.

This is not a question of conjecture, but of fact. Take Britain’s relationship with the African continent, for example. At present, British companies control more than $1 trillion worth of Africa’s key resources: gold, diamonds, gas and oil, and an area of land roughly to four times the size of the UK.

All countries use diplomacy to lobby in their own interests – there is nothing wrong with that. In Britain’s case, the Commonwealth has served very nicely to advocate its particular shopping list: liberalized, extractor-friendly regimes, low corporate tax rates, and a creative system of tax havens predominantly located in – you guessed it – other Commonwealth countries.

As a result, Africa loses £30bn more each year than it receives in aid, loans and remittances.

Source: What is the Commonwealth if not the British Empire 2.0? | Afua Hirsch | Opinion | The Guardian

The India I grew up in has gone. These rapes show a damaged, divided nation | The Guardian


Where government statistics say four rapes are reported across the country every hour, sexual assault is no longer news. Indian minds have been rearranged by the constant violence of their surroundings. Crimes against women, children and minority communities are normalized enough for only the most sensational to be reported.

Nationalism can be benign as well as malignant: Tagore foresaw the malignant variant a century ago.

“Alien government in India is a chameleon,” he wrote. “Today it comes in the guise of an Englishman … the next day, without abating a jot of its virulence, it may take the shape of our own countrymen.”

Given the right political conditions, virulent nationalism creeps into every bone, every thought process. When it leads to the calculated mutilation of a child, ethnic cleansing does not appear too far distant.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, renowned as a demagogue, is coming to be even better known for what he chooses to stay silent about.

Source: The India I grew up in has gone. These rapes show a damaged, divided nation | Anuradha Roy | Opinion | The Guardian

Shadows of Empire: The Anglosphere in British Politics | Wiley

In this book, leading commentators Michael Kenny and Nick Pearce trace the historical origins of this idea back to the shadow cast by the British Empire in the late Victorian era.

They show how leading British political figures, from Churchill to Thatcher, consistently reworked it and how it was revived by a group of right-wing politicians, historians and pamphleteers to support the case for Brexit.

They argue that, while the contemporary idea of the Anglo-sphere as an alternative to European Union membership is seriously flawed, it nonetheless represents an enduring account of Britain’s role in the world that runs through the heart of political life over the last century.

Source: Shadows of Empire: The Anglosphere in British Politics | British Politics | Comparative Politics | General & Introductory Political Science | Subjects | Wiley

Melania Says Comey’s Book Not as Mean as the One She Is Writing | The New Yorker


Speaking to reporters at the White House, she said that she had obtained an advance copy of Comey’s book because she “couldn’t wait to read it,” but said that she found its tone and contents disappointingly mild.

“It felt like he was pulling his punches,” she said. “No one will say that when they read my book.”

She said that, as a fellow-author, she had sympathy for Comey. “Clearly, he was trying very hard to be nasty, and he deserves credit for effort,” she said. “But I will show him how it is done.”

Source: Melania Says Comey’s Book Not as Mean as the One She Is Writing | The New Yorker

Macron Takes Aim At European Politics

Until the terrorist attack at a market in southern France on March 23, French President Emmanuel Macron had been planning to launch a new European-level political campaign. Though the official rollout has now been postponed, Macron’s latest project remains central to his presidency and to his conception of power.

To understand the full scope of Macron’s ambitions, we should consider the principles that underpin his worldview and guide his approach to politics.

The first is “consensus dissensuel.” This may sound like a highfalutin version of “having one’s cake and eating it.” But, according to François Dosse, it is really about drawing strength from the opposition between two conflicting viewpoints, unlike a Hegelian approach, which seeks synthesis between two poles.

Macron’s embrace of the Ricoeurian model is evident in his frequent use of the phrase “en même temps” (“at the same time”) when describing parallel domestic-reform proposals.

Source: Macron Takes Aim At European Politics

How To Give Feedback That Actually Works, Without Hurting Anyone More Than You Have To | GovExec.com


Feedback helps us see our inevitable blind spots, and optimize our performance. As Charlie Munger, vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, famously stated, “You are not going to get very far in life based on what you already know.”

Poorly delivered feedback, however, can wreak havoc. At its best, it stirs confusion. At its worst, it breeds fear, resentment, and revenge. As a result, we’re conditioned to viewing the delivery of any feedback as a risk.

But anyone can master the art of giving feedback. Here’s how …

Source: How To Give Feedback That Actually Works, Without Hurting Anyone More Than You Have To – Management Matters – Management – GovExec.com