It’s December 1, 1976, and the Sex Pistols are being interviewed on live television.

Appearing on the British Today show at the supper hour, the Pistols’ frontman John Lydon (Johnny Rotten) responded to interviewer Bill Grundy’s command, “Say something outrageous,” by calling him a “dirty fucker” and a “fucking rotter.”

The newspapers put the Sex Pistols on the front page for a week with screaming headlines like “TV Fury Over Rock Cult Filth” and “Punk? Call It Filthy Lucre”. Members of Parliament denounced them.

“Anarchy in the U.K.” entered the charts at Number 43, but record company executives refused to…


The most hackneyed word in the lexicon of Western thought needs serious re-evaluation. Across business and government settings in the West, infinite means (technology) are being mistaken for ends, operations are being confused for outcomes, “strategy” is something that is described afterwards, a watery residue of past actions taken in isolation from each other, then packaged and positioned in PowerPoints to sell the idea that this is what we intended all along.

The Main Drift is painfully apparent:

The West has reached a place where an inversion of the expected order has happened. “An epic global contest between autocracy and…


We are sitting astride a stark rupture in the historical timeline, a wholesale destruction of contexts. It’s time for a new category of ideas to enact large-scale system change.

Healthcare’s next cycle of evolution links the ‘production of health’ with economic development as New Strategy for “transformation,” one that happens on a market-shaping roadmap. It’s about assuming Total System Leadership for the ‘common good’ and working with a new philosophy of value. Outcomes and community impact are the organizing ideas to measure strategic success.

Though the US is the world’s largest economy as measured by GDP, writes David Rotman, editor…


During a briefing by academics at the London School of Economics as the 2008 financial crisis was reaching its climax, Queen Elizabeth II, whose personal fortune was estimated to have fallen by as much as 25 million pounds, asked the question that was on the minds of many of her subjects: “Why did nobody see it coming?”

The response by her advisors at the time was blunt:

Economics could not give useful service to explain the crisis because current economic theory has established that it cannot predict such crises. …


Solving insurance churn is Blue Ocean for payer and pharmaceutical markets to cohere and collaborate on health system innovation. The principal challenge in positioning business models for the future isn’t technical, but conceptual: working with a new mindset and set of ideas to find mutual understanding on shared objectives, and then reorganizing the behavior of a system of markets within a new health context.

Per new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 2 million workers and their families lose or transfer to new commercial health plans every month in the United States. …


MedAdNews is a trade publication covering the business of pharmaceutical marketing.

It’s somewhat like Advertising Age, in that it’s focused on serving and celebrating the subsystem of communications agencies and media buyers who create the content to position and promote the feature/benefit story of prescription drug brands directly to consumers and health care professionals.

The Mad Men of drug marketing, if you well.

It’s big business. In 2016 alone, according to the Journal of the American Medical Association, the pharmaceutical industry as a whole invested somewhere around $30 billion on drug advertising, promotion, public relations and sales across audiences…


“Awareness” campaigns are a new category of waste in health care.

Most of us accept administrative complexity, inefficient workflows, obsolete care standards and ample fraud as root cause for around $1 trillion in waste floating throughout the current system(s).

In a Harvard Business Review piece not long ago, a group of authors spanning government, economics, entrepreneurship and strategy consulting got together “to assess what we already know we can save in our system and where policymakers, entrepreneurs, investors, and health care leaders need to focus their attention.”

They categorized the interventions into the different strategies put forth by various…


During a visit to the London School of Economics as the 2008 financial crisis was reaching its climax, Queen Elizabeth asked the question that no doubt was on the minds of many of her subjects: “Why did nobody see it coming?”

The response, at least by the University of Chicago economist Robert Lucas, was blunt: Economics could not give useful service for the 2008 crisis because economic theory has established that it cannot predict such crises. As John Kay writes, “Faced with such a response, a wise sovereign will seek counsel elsewhere.”

And so might we all.

From The…


The means of creativity are endless. It’s new ends that are in short supply.

The 2019 SXSW Conference & Festival is officially underway. Organizers behind the coming ten days of innovation theater are promising “a whirlwind of inspiring sessions, film screenings, meet ups, early morning tacos, showcases, exhibitions, competitions, late night tacos, and ample opportunities for networking.”

Sounds cool.

There’s even a SXSW bot affectionately called “Abby,” who you can bond with and personalize to deliver a casual, fun and easy-to-follow experience to help navigate the event, and indulge in all the raw and boundless possibilities on display.

We’re…


The problem that’s arrived for the pharmaceutical industry is that its marketing is showing. If only it worked.

For more than a century, most Western companies have been working under a Fordist model of mass production and consumption, where industrial capitalism places the idea of ‘promote-and-push product’ as the center of commerce. The purpose put into the machine is managing “brand”.

It’s an entrenched mode of being and thinking.

This is a view of identity and approach that, up until recently, achieved a sort of benign balance in the friction between contending interests of business and consumer. There’s an…

John Singer

John G. Singer is the founder of Blue Spoon Consulting, a leader in Strategy and Innovation at a System Level.

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