The Quality of Leadership

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Huntn, Jul 29, 2016.

  1. Huntn macrumors P6


    May 5, 2008
    The Misty Mountains
    Why are people compelled to grab the reigns of leadership? It's probably more complicated than this but...

    I think most leaders have an ego, they feel empowered, some actively seek power, and others fall into it. Some of these leaders are primarily humanitarians and some have moved into positions of political power. But the defining aspect of admirable leadership are the motivations behind it and primarily that of seeking to improve the human condition.

    A distinct difference I see are leaders who have spent their lives giving of themselves, idealists struggling to change the human condition for the better vs blatant opportunists mostly seeking to wield power for power's sake, and enriching themselves by controlling and stepping on others.

    I'm anticipating some jeers, but if you look at Hillary Clinton's life, most of it has been spent performing the humanitarian role. She did not start out in politics, did not seek politics, but was compelled by her nature to dive into humanitarian efforts helping children, women, and working class people. This is an established fact.

    What can you say about Trump? Nothing good, the cracks in his veneer are widening every day. Similiar to one of those Middle East dictators, he strikes me as the guy who is grabbing at power primarily based on wielding power for self enrichment and to feed his ego. Recently a list of Trump's good deeds (unverified) was posted in the forum. I have no doubt he is capable of small acts of kindness, but this must be weighed on the scale of positive versus negative. All evidence revealed so far is that the negative, how his business practices adversely effect the people around him is overwhelmingly NEGATIVE.

    Check out this Fortune List of the 50 greatest leaders from 2014, many of the names I have not heard of, but there are recognizable names like Gandi, Kennedy, Teresa, Pope Francis, Merkel, Lama, Jolie, King and yes Bill Clinton. :)
  2. thermodynamic Suspended


    May 3, 2009

    People grab the reins because they either genuinely want to change things, or want the power, fame, and image. Or a combination or all or none of those factors.

    Snopes also showed Trump doing some good things. Even I posted that a few days ago. It's been said 60~70% of Americans don't trust Clinton. I've yet to read all of the facts behind that claim, however. Only that social media is floating the claim. (Obviously we have read claims about Trump being bad and nobody trusts him. Those are said more often. That's why I'm bringing up other claims and other possible points of view. Similar to what lawyers have to do, which is quite a big job that I couldn't be able to handle. )
  3. zin macrumors 6502

    May 5, 2010
    United Kingdom
    There is a highly organised character assassination campaign, all right. It's just that it's being perpetrated against Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton.

    I wonder why nobody here flailed their arms when Donald Trump's voicemails were hacked in 2012. Could it possibly be because they found nothing except dozens of messages from people thanking him for donations to autism and epilepsy charities?

    "Similar to one of those Middle East dictators".

    Just listen to yourself. :rolleyes:
  4. maxsix Suspended


    Jun 28, 2015
    Western Hemisphere
    I concur.

    And... It's about to get much more intense.

    Hillary's entire life, her entire existence hangs in the balance, she's got to win the allegedly rigged election. With pride, ego, everything that matters to the old matron and her sleazy husband on the line, Trump destruction is their only priority.

    It's going to get ugly. She's a deadly adversary.
  5. thermodynamic Suspended


    May 3, 2009
    Among other sources, what you say has truth in it:

    What's interesting is this, though I can understand why the appearing inconsistency having lived it:
    There are many reasons to support it, for which maybe Reagan could have fathomed a few... I shouldn't have to spell out every facet or nuance. All the reasons are, as the saying goes, "hidden in plain sight".

    That and trying to appeal to all Americans since, as the meme goes about unity. Nobody has a monopoly on that or on considering ALL sides. We're a democratic republic, after all.
  6. Huntn thread starter macrumors P6


    May 5, 2008
    The Misty Mountains
    And I referenced your post along with the perspective of relative good vs bad. Based on what I've read and seen, it appears Trump suffers from one or more personality disorders which have been mentioned multiple times in this forum- narrcacisist, sociopath, questionable morals and integrity, budding meglomaniac. People who have worked with him says he constantly changes his mind. His ghost writer for The Art Of The Deal book has completely disavowed Mr. Trump saying he regrets writing it.

    As far as supporting seemingly contrary social agendas, an argument can be made that he has no grounded moral foundation, he takes action he perceives as being advantageous at the moment, as evidenced by his statements being all over the moral landscape.
  7. vrDrew macrumors 65816

    Jan 31, 2010
    Midlife, Midwest

    Anybody who takes on or aspires to a leadership role is going to have reasonably positive opinion of themselves.

    The problem as it relates to leadership is that there is a difference between self-confidence and narcissism. American business, to this day, has a problem with pathological narcissists getting into management positions. In many respects, narcissists tend to have attributes that get them promoted: they are often very good talkers; they can appear superficially charming, charismatic even. And as long as things go well, they can function fine (at least as far as their superiors are concerned.)

    Military organizations are beset somewhat less by the pathological narcissism problem. They get their leaders from academies and training programs that instill the concepts of service and teamwork from the outset. Their first jobs are as junior lieutenants whose level of authority is extremely limited in relation to the larger organization, and often in roles that identify very quickly whether or not the individual can effectively lead small teams. The military also has extremely rigorous career paths. An officer either is promoted according to a set schedule or he or she is retired. (This does, I will note, introduce its own set of problems from both a management and a leadership standpoint.)

    The concepts of Service and Teamwork are essential to being an effective leader. One can, quite literally, not hope to LEAD until one has first learned how to SERVE. It is only by understanding the pressures and mindset of those you are asking (or ordering) to do something; that a real leader can hope to effectively motivate their subordinates to effectively carry out their desired tasks.

    And it is this concept of Service that seems most problematical for Donald Trump. Because Donald Trump has, quite literally, never served anybody (other than himself) in his life. He has never had a boss of any description. Not shareholders or independent Board of Directors. Not military superiors. Not constituents as an elected official.

    Performing Service instills in an individual a certain level of humility. It teaches an individual the necessity of working with others to achieve one's goals. It teaches one the depth of wisdom, experience, and ability that is often present in the lower levels of an organization.

    As Bob Dylan said: You gotta serve somebody. And I'm not sure Donald Trump has the first idea what that means.
  8. applesith macrumors 68030


    Jun 11, 2007
    Just watch House of Cards and you'll get all your answers.
  9. jnpy!$4g3cwk macrumors 65816


    Feb 11, 2010
  10. Savor Suspended


    Jun 18, 2010

    Bill Clinton explained Hillary’s political style perfectly — but disguised it as a love story

    Updated by Ezra Klein on July 27, 2016, 12:25 a.m. ET


    There was a moment in Bill Clinton’s winding, loving, and occasionally weird convention speech about his wife that encapsulated how Hillary Clinton’s admirers see her, and why they think so much of the criticism she gets is unfair.

    "Speeches like this are fun," said the former president, who clearly finds giving long, nationally televised speeches to be fun. "Actually doing the work is hard."

    That’s the view Hillary Clinton’s fans have of her. Hell, it’s the view Hillary Clinton has of herself. She knows she doesn’t give great speeches. "I am not a natural politician, in case you haven't noticed, like my husband or President Obama," she’s said. But then, she doesn't think giving great speeches is the real work of politics, even though the media and sometimes the voters mistake it for the real work of politics.

    That’s what her husband means when he dismisses speeches as "fun." He gives great speeches. But he’s also been president. And he knows the difference.

    What Hillary Clinton thinks makes a great president

    When I sat down with Clinton in Raleigh, North Carolina, and askedwhat makes a good president, she turned to this immediately. "A lot of governing is the slow, hard boring of hard boards," she said. "I don’t think there’s anything sexy, exciting, or headline-grabbing about it." (Read the full transcript of our interview for much more on this point.)

    There are a few qualities that come up whenever you talk to people who’ve worked with Clinton. Her ability to listen is one, and I wrote about that at length here. But another is her capacity for hard work. Like the praise of her listening skills, it can seem faint and gendered — isn’t it the old cliché that the man gets called brilliant while the woman is extolled as a hard worker? But it comes up enough that’s it’s worth taking seriously.

    "One of her greatest qualities is working hard," said Mickey Kantor, who chaired Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign but has known Hillary Clinton since the 1970s. "You might say that’s not such a great quality. But she works incessantly, and you cannot overestimate the importance of that in a president. Anyone who says anyone can do that work, that’s not true. We’ve seen presidents who don’t work as hard, who can’t do that, and they’re not as successful."

    "There was just never a single instance when she said no to something," said Ben Rhodes, a top foreign policy adviser to President Obama. "There was never a time she couldn’t take a trip, get to a meeting, be at a meeting. This is somebody who is never going to have a reason to not do something. It’s a single-mindedness you can’t help but notice."

    Hillary’s admirers think she doesn’t get credit for her relentlessness, that she gets overshadowed by politicians who can give a better speech but don’t know how to get anything done, that she gets dinged by a press corps that loves to talk about optics but isn’t particularly interested in how policy gets made.

    Some of this is fair; some of it isn’t. But the reason it’s important is that relentlessness is core to Clinton’s theory of change. If you want to know her plan for being a good president, it’s actually pretty simple: Read everything, learn everything, work with everybody, and never stop trying to push the ball forward. That may sound obvious, but it’s actually a sharp change from recent presidents and current candidates whose theory of change relied on the power of oratory to mobilize citizens to demand new policies.

    Of late, that strategy hasn’t worked particularly well, and some scholars have turned rather sharply against it. In her book Why Presidents Fail, Brookings scholar Elaine Kamarck argues that "successful presidential leadership occurs when the president is able to put together and balance three sets of skills: policy, communication, and implementation."

    The problem, Kamarck says, is that campaigns are built to test only one of those skills. "The obsession with communication — presidential talking and messaging — is a dangerous mirage of the media age, a delusion that inevitably comes crashing down in the face of government failure."

    This was basically the point of Bill Clinton’s speech: Communication, he argued, is overrated. It’s a relentless focus on making and implementing policy that improves lives. And say what you will about Hillary Clinton, but she has more than demonstrated that.

    You know who loves giving fun speeches? Donald Trump.

    This was the meta-narrative of Bill Clinton’s speech: He managed to sugarcoat a numbing recitation of how hard Hillary Clinton has worked, how many policies she’s learned and changed, with just enough love story to keep people listening. By using their life together to create chronology, to mark time, he was showing how deep her work has gone, how consistent it’s been, how committed she is.

    And he was drawing, quietly, a contrast with Trump. There is no similar narrative for Donald Trump. He loves giving the fun speeches and has little interest in actually doing the hard work. He’s been running for president for more than a year now, and he’s been thinking running for president for much longer than that.

    But he shows no serious knowledge of policy, he’s not working hard with expert advisers, he’s not demonstrating a deepening sense of the job. Even his interest in showmanship degrades when he has to cede the floor to others — his convention was a poorly planned, poorly managed mess.

    There are candidates against whom Clinton’s appetite for the work of governance, and tedium of change, wouldn’t mark her as special. Mitt Romney, for instance, knew how to grind. Donald Trump does not.

    The argument Clinton and her allies are making is that change is hard work, and if you believe the country needs change, then you need a president willing to put in the work for it. In a normal election, that might not actually differentiate the two candidates. In this one, it does.

    Five Myths About Presidential Vacations


    The country burns while Bush took alot more time off and Obama's family is costing Americans a crap load (over $70M). Bush, more vacation days. Obama, more expensive. Jimmy Carter (79 days / 4 years) and Bill Clinton took the least amount of vacation. Maybe we need a hard working woman to be POTUS? Not lazy bums.

Share This Page