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Changing of the Guard: Three Leadership Lessons from Britain’s Policies of Appeasement
By | 03/21/2011 12:00PM | BACKGROUND

How Did Prime Minister Chamberlain Fall from Power and What are the Key Takeaways for Leaders Today?


Often portrayed in retrospect as a prophetic “voice in the wilderness;” Winston Churchill spoke out early and often against the rising threat of Hitler’s Nazi regime.1 While Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and most other British politicians favored an appeasement policy which had support with the British people; Churchill’s warnings were predominantly dismissed as the alarmist ravings of a restless rabble rouser.

In The Gathering Storm (1948), Churchill later reflected: “I felt a sensation of despair. To be so entirely […]

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“Change is the law of life.
And those who look only to the past
or present are certain to miss the future.”
-John F. Kennedy

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Income Inequality: The Elephant in the Room
By | 12/06/2010 12:00PM | PROBLEMS

A Dangerous Elixir for Our Republic


Most Americans agree there is nothing inherently wrong with a society of both rich and poor. In many ways, it adds to our diversity and can be a healthy source of motivation for those with a desire to live a richer life. What is disturbing, however, is how extreme the gulf between the rich and the poor has become. And what is even more problematic is that the gulf is increasingly not between the rich and the poor. The biggest divide today is between […]

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“When fascism comes to America, it will be
wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross."
-Sinclair Lewis, 1935

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Perfecting the Power of Political Propaganda (PART 2)
By | 09/27/2010 11:50AM | PROBLEMS

The Subtle, Insidious Manipulation of the American Mind


Propaganda is the menace to democracy of which the American people are least aware. This is true in part because it is intentionally surreptitious, but also because propaganda, by its very nature, is contrary to freedom and democracy. Thus, most Americans find it difficult to fathom the true extent to which we are influenced by political and corporate propaganda. It seems almost counter-intuitive; especially when we look and feel so free. Yet, to be sure, this is precisely what makes propaganda so powerful—the ideas seem to sprout up out of […]

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“Only the mob and the elite can be attracted
by the momentum of totalitarianism itself.
The masses have to be won by propaganda.”
-Hannah Arendt

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Perfecting the Power of Political Propaganda (PART 1)
By | 09/20/2010 11:00AM | PROBLEMS

Big Lies, Little Lies, Rumors and Propaganda


“Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.” This quote, which explains a propaganda technique known as the “Big Lie,” is traced back to Adolf Hitler and is discussed in more detail in Mein Kampf (1925). When Hitler and the Nazis came to power in Germany in 1933 they immediately established the Reich Ministry of Propaganda. Its purpose was […]

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“Propaganda is to a democracy
what the bludgeon is to a totalitarian state.”
-Noam Chomsky

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Who Can We Trust in Washington?
By | 09/13/2010 11:05AM | PROBLEMS

The only thing we can depend on in Washington is a constant stream of partisan propaganda.


With all of the problems we have in Washington there is one that stands out, in my view, as being extremely problematic: a total lack of trust. I just don’t believe that we can trust anyone in Washington anymore. As much as I admire our Founders and as much as I stand in awe of […]

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“Politics is the shadow cast on society by big business…business for private profit through private control of banking, land, industry, reinforced by command of the press, press agents and other means of publicity and propaganda.” -John Dewey

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Rewarding Congressional Incompetence with Continuous Reelection Coups
By | 09/06/2010 11:40AM | PROBLEMS

Despite Devastating Disapproval and an Utter Lack of Confidence, Our Congressional Leaders Have a Virtual Lockdown on Reelection


It is inconceivable that Americans could so devastatingly disapprove of the job of our elected representatives, while simultaneously reelecting them to office in overwhelming numbers. Reelection rates for the U.S. House of Representatives between 1964 and 2008 average a whopping 93%.1 And within the last 14 years, the chances that an incumbent in the House would get reelected was never lower than 94% and has been as high as 98%. Yet, a 2010 poll by Gallup shows […]

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"We should be unfaithful to ourselves if we should ever lose sight of the danger to our liberties if anything partial or extraneous should infect
the purity of our free, fair, virtuous, and independent elections."
-John Adams

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Democracy: By Invitation Only
By | 03/14/2010 12:00PM | PROBLEMS, SOLUTIONS

What is a republic when its leaders remain inaccessible, residing behind gated communities, stone walls and closed doors?


In America today, access to power is a privilege open to a very small, and very rich, minority of Americans. Meeting with a U.S. Senator or U.S. Representative or some other high-ranking public official or political VIP—even once they are out of office—is strictly limited to political and social elites. And though we might expect this aristocratic mentality […]

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"I hope our wisdom will grow with our power,
and teach us, that the less we use our
power the greater it will be.”
-Thomas Jefferson

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