Snowden a role model for civil servants

Mandela is a role model for ex colonial leaders that were abused, beaten and locked up by the colonialists but was willing to let bygones be bygones, kissed the colonialists and moved on with life. Snowden is the shining role model for citizens working for their govt and made to do the unsavoury, the unethical and committing crimes against their citizens and brave enough to stand up to expose the trespasses.

Modern societies are hijacked by crooks in the govt and big corporations, all with the intent to exploit the innocent and ignorant masses for their own personal good. And while claiming moral righteousness and authority, they are doing exactly the opposite. The biggest culprits are the Americans that the gullibles across the world believed were angels, the guardians of human rights and human goodness. They are the most depraved and wicked of all human beans, perpetuating terrors, inciting and starting wars and killing the innocents in a scale never known before.

Snowden has reappeared in the news again. And he is proud to say that he has done what he set out to do, mission accomplished. Snowden told the Washington Post that ‘he was satisfied because journalists have been able to tell the story of the US govt’s collection of bulk Internet and phone records, an activity that has grown dramatically in the decade since the Sept 11,m 2001 terror attacks’. He added that he did not want to change society but want to give society a chance to determine if it should change itself. And referring to his employer, the NSA, Snowden said he was not trying to bring down the NSA but to improve it.

What Snowden said was as good as telling govt officers to be morally upright and stand for justice to the people. When a govt is playing dirty, unethical, or demanding govt officers to stoop to disgraceful and morally wrong practices, the govt officers must stand up to stop the wrong, to expose the govt. By doing so, it is helping the govt, the agency he works and the fellow officers to be better, to not do things that are morally wrong, to prevent agency and officers from being made to commit crimes against the people.

This is a very strong message that Snowden is sending out to all govt officers. Do not be made an accomplice of crooked govt officials and be a part of the crime. A govt, a govt agency, can only be upright and do the right thing if the officers are upright and not be cowed or beholden to do the wrong things. Only then can the country and the people progress and live a life as free people and with dignity.

Snowden is labeled a traitor by his govt. The truth is that his govt leaders are the real traitors to his country and people.


PSS said...

" I hope to stand firm enough not to go backward, and yet not go forward fast enough to wreck the country's cause."
Abraham Lincoln ( 1809-1865 ), US 16th President

In this time of considerable anxiety, stress, fear, disappearing hope, distrust, the fight for survival and a peaceful tomorrow ...... , strong leadership is quintessential. Leaders provide directions and are great sources of influence. Great leadership seeks to inspire, enthuse, infect their followers with their passion and devotion. Leaders add layers each day to foundations and consolidate the organisational structure with greater strength and tensile. Leadership is not administrative ability. Leadership is to manage followers and subjects towards achieving the group objective. Therefore, winning the trust of followers and subject is essential in successful and sustainable leadership.

“It is a curious thing, Harry, but perhaps those who are best suited to power are those who have never sought it. Those who, like you, have leadership thrust upon them, and take up the mantle because they must, and find to their own surprise that they wear it well.”

J K Rowling, Harry Porter and the Dealthly Hallows

In a fast changing world, adaptation is key. What works for a country in the past may be what would fail the country in the future.

The present is a crossroad.

Leadership needs intelligence and vision

PSS said...

Great leaders know the directions they need to head to and where they can take the people. Without winning the hearts and minds of its people, a leader can go nowhere. Coercive power needs to be constantly used. Historically it doesn't last long. The Qin Dynasty is a great example. Its tyranny brought to its demise in only 15 years of reign, the shortest in China 5,000 years recorded history.

Coercive power often goes hand in hand with reward power. To manage its subject, authoritarian leadership use coercive power on them. On its subordinate, they employ reward power to secure their obedience. Often, such leadership loses the hearts of its subjects and even its subordinates.

Historically, lasting leadership are those that employ referent and/ or expert power. The followers abide by their leadership because they want to. It is a combination of the hearts and the minds. Leadership that has won over the hearts of its subjects and subordinates often instil and inspire hopes in its followers. Come what may, the followers are willing to even sacrifice themselves to achieve the group objectives. On the other hand, a leadership that only offers profitable outcome as a dangle is usually a non-sustainable leadership model in the longer term. Carrot and stick model is not exactly the best everlasting leadership model in history. Winning over the hearts and minds of its followers is.

PSS said...

"To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your hearts." Eleanor Roosevelt

At moments like now, the society we are in may need a leader who can offer more hope than just pure profitable outcome. Yet again, for many, even a profitable outcome may not be in the sight of visibility as far as the eyes and minds can see.

Anonymous said...

The comments are longer than the Thread.
However, they are all quotes of yesteryears.
Something new, radical and maybe revolutionary would be refreshing.

Anonymous said...

anon 2.39pm : / The comments are longer than the Thread./

It was once said by someone that to gauge the sincerity, generosity and magnanimity of a person, it can be known via his/ her "reply" ( or comment ).

Anonymous said...

anon 2.39pm: / However, they are all quotes of yesteryears.
Something new, radical and maybe revolutionary would be refreshing./

How about the following quotes? Just to pander to your populist yearning .....

"The biggest problem with the two-party system is that once it is in place, the best people will choose not to be in politics. Getting elected will be a dicey affair. Fighting campaigns will also tend to become unnecessarily uncivil, even vicious. If you are talented and doing well in your career, why would you place so much at risk - not only your own interests but your family's too - by standing for election? You are more likely to prefer to stay out of kitchen and in your comfortable life."

Source: pg. 210, ONE MAN'S VIEW of the WORLD, LEE KUAN YEW

Anonymous said...

" A general election outcome like that of May 2011 would have been produced sooner or later. The People's Action Party (PAP) polled an average of 60.1 per cent nationwide and lost six seats - the worst result since Independence in 1965. The near-total dominance of the PAP at elections before that was not sustainable in the long term. It was possible because the generation that grew up with Singapore's independence saw its living standards rise very substantially from a low base. Eventually, improvements would slow down and become less visible. A new generation with different life experiences would vote according to a wholly new set of considerations compared to that of their parents and grandparents. There were particular short-term factors surrounding May 2011 that made the situation less favourable to the PAP, such as decisions of Workers' Party's chief Low Thia Khiang to move out of his Hougang base and contest the Aljunied GRC, and the general unhappiness with certain government policies. Ultimately, though, losing one Group Representation Constituency (GRC)to the opposition could not have been held off indefinitely."

Source: pg. 205, ONE MAN'S VIEW of the WORLD, LEE KUAN YEW

In other words, future carrots would "look" comparatively smaller and smaller each passing year. Other model(s)/ mode(s) would have to be adopted/ co-opted to bring itself aligned with the time without becoming more "anachronistic" each passing year.

It may have to be a combination of winning their five senses - sight, sound, touch, taste, smell and much more .....

It may also entail winning their "heads" ( minds ), "hearts", "stomachs" ( for the poorer ones ), desires to fulfil higher orders of needs ( eg. such as those expounded by Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs ) etc etc.

Anonymous said...

"The more important question, therefore, is: Where do we go from here? The answer to that depends as much on the PAP's choices - its reaction to the changing circumstances - as it does the electorate's. There are countless imponderables. However, I am certain of one thing. If, in the end, Singapore decides to move towards a two-party system, then we are destined for mediocrity. We will lose our shine and become nothing more than a dull little red dot, if we tell ourselves: "Look, never mind. Let's just be an ordinary city. Why should we try to be better than other cities or countries?" I will be very sorry for Singapore if we ever went down that road."

Source: pg. 206, ONE MAN'S VIEW of the WORLD, LEE KUAN YEW

Another way to look at the situation is both will change but there are countless variables. They will react to each other - what are given, what are taken, what are changed, what cannot be changed, what must be accepted as immovable basics ..... etc etc But for one side, it may need to take longer than the time it is given.

As stated in the "Model of Bounded Rationality" expounded by Professor Herbert Simon ( 1916-2001, American political scientist, economist, sociologist and psychologist, also credited to have influenced the new pedagogy of teaching Mathematics and achieving much better results among students ), decisions are made "under stressful and unstable conditions'. Decisions may be made under certain constraints and pressures, leading to what is known as "satisficing", the practice of choosing a decision that satisfy the minimum requirements to achieve an objective or goal or solving a problem. But this may lead to risk aversion, thereby limiting the possibility and potential of innovative solutions by using old decisions and applying to new problems to satisfy the minimum requirements.

Thus, decisions may have to be adopted integrating other decision making approaches such as "Garbage can model", "Decision Theory", "Dominant Strategy Equilibrium", "Nash Equilibrium and "Pareto Equilibrium' etc etc.

As former MM Lee mentioned in the above quoted passage, there are many imponderables going forward but ultimately the decision "not to be an outstanding city state" must not be taken by the younger generation as it would likely lead to dire consequences for all.

The challenges may be to stay ahead yet able to fulfil the many aspirations of the younger generations.

The current mix of leaders may not be as "sharp minded", as "single-minded", as "determined" ...... etc etc as the pioneer leaders due to being products of very different settings and environments. Nonetheless, their tasks are not any lesser ahead.

One fact that needs to be recognised is that whoever in charge must get people behind them and their policies. Whatever happened in the past cannot be undone. Going forward, there must be certain sincerity and to deliver what has been promised. Improvements must be demonstrated on the ground and not just expounding high sounding motherhood statements, particularly and specifically not in the comfort of high and cushy ivory towers.

Anonymous said...

Obviously, it is not going to be easy. Accordingly to the words of organisational psychologist Kurt Lewin ( 1890-1947 ), it involves the process of "unfreezing" existing behaviours, "moving" on to new behaviours, values etc and "refreezing" the new behaviours and practices after establishing them.

To put in in simple term, this little red dot may be undergoing a period of change which whoever in charge has to grapple with and manage. They have to influence responses to the desired outcome as much as they are at times influenced by those they are leading.

Again, the issue of resistance to change by the leadership is covered by Kurt Lewin in his forcefield analysis. Obviously, often a change may be perceived as a threat and thus the natural resistance.

As such, objectives must be clearly defined, communicated in the process. In the end, resilience, persistence, patience, painstaking efforts and sincerity may be the keys to unlock the passage to a smooth, successful transition to the next phase.

Again, commitment on the part of all participants are quintessential as expounded in the "Garbage can model" and problems, solutions combined to point to a resolution or solution to the problem.