Leadership, hypocrisy and power | Joseph J. Ellis, Chris Hirst & Natalie Bennett

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How much should we trust our leaders?

Great leaders promise to change the world. They claim to have the vision and the values to transform our lives. But rarely do they deliver. Again and again the promises are not kept, the transformation fails to arrive, and instead there is incompetence, deceit and duplicity.

Are leaders a singularly useless and malevolent bunch? Or could it be that the hypocrisy is in fact ours, demanding ethical standards we do not apply to ourselves and which none can live up to, and expecting leaders implausibly to solve intractable problems once and for all? Would we be better to stop vilifying our politicians and leaders and focus on the complexity and challenge of finding the best solutions, or is it simply the case that absolute power corrupts absolutely and we should redouble our oversight to ensure they remain in check?

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