I would love to see the PHB do a 180 and say the same thing to Alice. Might have to call 911 in Elbonia after she gets finished with him. Critical controllers who speak in double binds = crazymaking.....
I worked at a company that decided to outsource part of IT. It appeared to me that the outsourcer had a habit of treating anyone who was competent or "a producer" such that they would hate their jobs, their boss, and the company to which they were contractors. Meetings like this were commonplace. Didn't think too much about it at the time since I was "regular" staff and not "transitioned" or one of the contractors and therefore not subjected to the abuse. It became clear later on that this was more than an appearance; it was a strategy. One would get "the treatment" if you opposed them in some way, though.
Initially the contractor was hired to handle the day to day things and allow the regular staff to get on with developing some new systems. The people who were targeted quickly got the message and left. And for the good of the company the regulars would step up and do the day to day because the contractors didn't. So to management it appeared that the contractors were doing the job they were hired for. This was eventually used by the contractor to convince management to let them have it all. (See, we're getting OUR work done, but these people aren't doing anything!) It worked. And then they couldn't go back since the contractor essentially owned IT.
Under the two previous PHBs our department ran like that. If we had anything to do there would be the right way, the wrong way and our way. Our way looked like the wrong way, just much worse, and God help the supervisor who directed his team to do anything the right way.