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Archive: December 14, 2008 - December 20, 2008

Clean Our Own House

We suspect candidates might have ethical shortcomings, but we vote for them anyway with a wink and a nod, believing that just goes with the territory.

By John R. Ryan | December 16, 2008; 9:07 PM ET | Comments (4)

Our Better Angels

When things go wrong a leader's responsibilities go far beyond the day's press conference, and Obama has taught us something about public service through this scandal.

By Ed Ruggero | December 16, 2008; 8:59 PM ET | Comments (0)

Preempt Wrongdoing

Leaders cannot afford to wait until malfeasance or illegality washes up at their front door. They must set a tone of ethics and transparency in their organizations.

By Gen. Monty Meigs (Ret.) | December 16, 2008; 8:47 PM ET | Comments (1)

Special Investigator Needed

The President-elect needs to make sure he is not seen as sitting on the sidelines. Meeting with congressional leaders to identify a special investigator might be the right step.

By Bob Schoultz | December 16, 2008; 8:41 PM ET | Comments (0)

Disclosure -- Or Legal Advice

If you have nothing to hide, disclose everything right away. If you do, find a good lawyer.

By Slade Gorton | December 16, 2008; 8:37 PM ET | Comments (0)

Move On

Obama has repudiated him. Now he should move on to more pressing problems.

By Frances Hesselbein | December 16, 2008; 8:06 PM ET | Comments (0)

Democrats Need to Police Themselves

President-elect Obama's ethics policies and campaign promises for government reform are a great start, but the Congress and the Democratic Party have to step up to the plate, too.

By Paul Schmitz | December 15, 2008; 2:35 PM ET | Comments (1)

Try the Warren Buffett Way

Even a hint of an ethical lapse can destroy a reputation of integrity. When scandal hit Salomon Brothers in 1991, Warren Buffett set a gold standard for restoring a culture of integrity.

By Michael Useem | December 15, 2008; 2:26 PM ET | Comments (1)

It's All About Character

Tell the truth and tell it fast.

By Norm R. Augustine | December 15, 2008; 2:24 PM ET | Comments (1)

Don't Apologize -- Be Human

Full cooperation is certainly a necessary part of the response, but I think the situation also provides an opportunity for Obama to help his constituents begin to understand and appreciate his fallibility.

By Roger Martin | December 15, 2008; 2:07 PM ET | Comments (9)

Commit Acts of Candor

There is only one way to deal with allegations or illegal behavior and that is total transparency.

By Warren Bennis | December 15, 2008; 1:55 PM ET | Comments (1)

Insist on His Resignation

Obama should stay at arm's length from Blagojevich and continue to insist the governor resign or be impeached.

By Bill George | December 15, 2008; 1:52 PM ET | Comments (0)

Push Ethics to the Forefront

Ethics is a daily proposition and not just a backstop to employ when things go wrong. Obama should establish that his administration has no room for self-serving public servants like Blagojevich.

By Barry Posner | December 15, 2008; 1:38 PM ET | Comments (1)

Send a Clear Message

Here's a chance to show us "change" applies to the way politics is conducted.

By Jim Kouzes | December 15, 2008; 1:17 PM ET | Comments (0)

Turn It Into an Opportunity

Incidents of misconduct threaten public confidence, but they are also an opportunity to reinforce important principles and demonstrate character.

By George Reed | December 15, 2008; 1:05 PM ET | Comments (0)

Be the Leader We Need

Rather than defensively answer questions, Obama should tell us he recognizes the governor's behavior is a symptom of the failure of leadership in this country.

By Michael Maccoby | December 15, 2008; 1:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

Be Thorough

The pressures for an immediate media strategy are enormous for President-elect Obama, but accuracy in fact-finding is far more important than speed.

By Benjamin W. Heineman, Jr. | December 15, 2008; 11:47 AM ET | Comments (0)

Machiavelli's Advice

If Obama must choose between being feared and being loved, in this case he should choose to be feared.

By Barbara Kellerman | December 15, 2008; 10:45 AM ET | Comments (0)

Fight Other Battles

Obama should focus on the issues that are going to make the biggest difference to the the country, and this is not one of those issues.

By Marshall Goldsmith | December 15, 2008; 10:34 AM ET | Comments (1)

Play It Cool

Because he hasn't been implicated, Obama should maintain his distance from the governor's problem.

By Abraham Zaleznik | December 15, 2008; 10:25 AM ET | Comments (2)

Not His Problem

Obama should not make this his problem -- he has enough already, thanks.

By Ken Adelman | December 15, 2008; 10:22 AM ET | Comments (1)

Exam Time for Obama

How Barack Obama handles this potential political crisis could be as important as how he handled the dicey situations with Rev. Wright or Bill Ayres.

By Howard Gardner | December 15, 2008; 10:14 AM ET | Comments (2)

Keep the Pressure on Blagojevich

When scandal hits, leaders should address the issue quickly and forthrightly.

By David Walker | December 15, 2008; 10:09 AM ET | Comments (0)

Full and Prompt Disclosure

Presidents have learned through bitter experiences that the public will forgive them for making mistakes, but won't forgive them for lying about those mistakes.

By Kurt Schmoke | December 15, 2008; 10:04 AM ET | Comments (2)

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