Politics


MIT Media Lab Disobedience Award 2017

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab announced today the winner of its Disobedience Award. They are Dr, Mona Hanna-Attisha and Professor Marc Edwards whose work unearthed and publicized the lead poisoning occurring in Flint Michigan as a result of politically driven changes to the source of the city’s drinking […]


Book Excerpt – Wise Leaders Value Intelligent Disobedience

Intelligent Disobedience does not imply that the authority figure is acting immorally, though that case certainly occurs. The individual with formal authority may simply be wrong for a variety of reasons. There are many other well- intentioned reasons that a person with authority may ask us to do something that […]


Book Excerpt – What is Intelligent Disobedience?

What exactly is Intelligent Disobedience? I had the same question when I first heard the term. These are two words that don’t usually fit together. We know what obedience is: following orders or rules or established ways of doing things. Obeying usually keeps life running smoothly. Disobedience is a contrary […]


If I Had Known Then what I Know Now

US 1936 Olympics gold medal backstroke champion, Adolph Kiefer, the son of German immigrants, died this week at 98 years old. As the US Navy’s chief swim instructor in WWII he is credited with saving thousands of lives by teaching sailors a survival form of the backstroke. He broke world […]


Tortured Souls

In the May/June issue of Foreign Affairs magazine, Army Major General (Retired) Antonio Taguba and Marine Lt Colonel (Retired) Scott Cooper review two memoirs about torture that the authors of the memoirs participated in while assigned to the Mid-East in the “war on terror.” These memoirs are relevant reads for […]


Bright Spots Amid “The Carnage”

A peaceful but seismic change of government occurred this weekend in Washington. The newly sworn in President chose to describe the national landscape as one of “carnage” that was difficult for many to recognize. In the midst of the uncertain course of this presidency it is important to not lose […]


The Power to Stand Up to Oppression

I do not know the source of this terrific depiction of the power to stand up to oppression. The first frame shows a group of people and a would be oppressor. In the second frame we see the oppressor wielding the whip and one individual refusing to bow to that […]


Followership and Intelligent Disobedience in Politics and Governance

Anne Aden is an organization development specialist who performs her work through her company Wellspring Praxis. She has introduced the subject of courageous followership to high level government clients who have integrated it into their leadership development programs. I received a message from Anne today that I am proud to […]


House of Representatives Sit In

We are in a topsy turvy situation when our elected representatives, who are inside the establishment, must resort to civil disobedience, a tool traditionally used by those outside the establishment, in order to have their voices heard. Just as we learned that our primary voting laws and convention delegate rules […]