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Sam Davidson's blog

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Leaders Change the Conversation


There was an excellent op-ed that ran over the weekend in The New York Times by Thomas Friedman. I've been a fan of his since college, even though I don't agree with every idea of his.

Nonetheless, his lengthy essay pushes hard for a carbon tax while acknowledging the difficulty of getting something like this (or anything) passed in Washington these days. He lays out the case compellingly, and I'm on board, especially since I think taxing behavior we want to curb or reign in (like energy usage) is a better move than taxing things we want to encourage (like earnings and wealth creation).

To solidify his position, Friedman interviews Adam Garfinkle, editor of The American Interest. In discussing the hard work needed to achieve progress in Congress and beyond, Garfinkle says:

“This is what real leaders do,” said Garfinkle. “They change the conversation.”

Friedman adds:

They don’t just read the polls; they shape the polls.

This is some beautiful leadership poetry to start your week. Remember that what's important and what's popular rarely overlap. So it's up to the leader to take the people where they need to go to do something great.