Winston Churchill in 1939 on the Stalin-Hitler Pact

Should-Read: I don't understand this:

If it is a personnel issue and not a program issue, you fire the person.

If it is a program issue and not a personnel issue, you spin out the group, wish them best wishes in their future endeavors, and direct funders their way.

But this seems to me to fit neither case. Sending young rising stars "many of whom... [you] have mentored" out into the wilderness with a boss who you believe "repeatedly violated the standards of honesty and good faith" is not doing them a favor:

Anne-Marie Slaughter: When The Truth is Messy and Hard: "I have racked my brain... as to what I... could or should have done differently about the departure of Barry Lynn and Open Markets from New America.... https://medium.com/@slaughteram/when-the-truth-is-messy-and-hard-1655a36e313f

...This was a personnel issue that I knew others would see as a program issue.... I... could keep an employee who had repeatedly violated the standards of honesty and good faith.... I could fire him outright and try to find a leader for his program, which would force both his funders and his program staff, many of whom were young rising stars who both Barry and I have mentored, to choose between us and him. Or I could try to work with Barry to negotiate a cooperative spinning out of the Open Markets.... I chose the third option, one that was much better for Barry than an outright firing would have been....

This was no “expulsion” of his team; quite the contrary, our biggest concern was precisely that these were New America employees to whom we had real obligations and regretted losing. Moreover, we had prepared a statement announcing the spin-out that emphasized our respect for Open Markets’ work.... Work that has included plenty of attacks on corporations that have funded other parts of New America. We were having productive conversations with Barry as recently as Monday.... James Fallows... was our first board chair... had become friends with Eric Schmidt when Eric was still at Novell and recruited him onto our board.... He has been very generous to New America and we are proud of our association with him.... At the same time, we have bragged from the beginning, using various adjectives, that we are an independent, heterodox, iconoclastic place. Barry Lynn and Michael Lind have long argued about economic concentration; a year ago we held a debate between Barry and Michael for our staff on Hamiltonian versus Jeffersonian views of the economy. In the coming months, one of our programs is hosting several events about the dangers of monopolies. I am no stranger to situations in which a fellow or a program staff member writes something that directly contradicts the views of another program in ways that has upset a funder....

In the academy... donors know that academic independence is sacrosanct.... As a nonpartisan think tank, one that prides itself on not being politically predictable, we uphold the same standards of intellectual independence. But we do not pay our researchers’ salaries. Grants do.... We tell all of our donors that they cannot control the results of what they fund.... But we also develop and maintain relationships with our donors.... So there’s the tension. In practice, with an employee who had already surprised his colleagues unpleasantly—and many would say dishonestly—in the past, it meant that I wanted to see a press release before it went out. That is the reason that the Open Markets statement went up and then was taken down. It was posted before I had a chance to give it a final review....

I wanted to give the funder a heads up that it was coming and send it over ourselves. That seems like a defensible minimum courtesy that an institution can offer its funders: we’re about to do something you are really not going to like, but at least we are telling you about it.... I had to make a tough call. I still believe I made the right one consistent with our history and institutional values.... [But] we were not in fact negotiating a cooperative spin-out with Barry Lynn but were in fact on the other end of a carefully prepared campaign, one that was already generating thousands of tweets and emails. In an effort to express New America’s position quickly in 140 characters, I said that Ken Vogel’s New York Times story was false.... Many of the story’s facts and selective quotations were presented in a way that gave the strong impression that we told Open Markets it had to leave because of pressure from Google. Again, this is simply not true. Still, the blanket claim that the entire story was “false” contributes to the kind of degradation of our national discourse that I often publicly lament.... I regret my tweet....

Barry’s new organization and campaign against Google is the opening salvo of one group of Democrats versus another group of Democrats in the run-up to the 2020 election, at a time when I personally think the country faces far greater challenges of racism, violence, a broken political system, and geographic and partisan divisions so great that we are losing any common sense of what we stand and strive for as a country.... For us, organizations like us, and the media who cover us, let’s start by speaking truth, even when it’s complicated and messy and hard.

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