Standard management advice is that managers fire employees too slowly rather than too quickly.
My critique seems resilient to this consideration. The fact that managers do not publicly criticize employees is not evidence of discomfort or awkwardness. Under the very obvious model of “how would a manager get what they want re: an employee”, public criticism is not a sensical lever to want to use.
I dunno, a fairly central example in my mind is if an employee or ex-employee says mean and (by your perspective) wrong things about you online. Seems like if it wasn’t for discomfort or awkwardness, replying to said employee would otherwise be a pretty obvious tool in the arsenal. Whereas you can’t fire ex-employees and firing current employees is a) just generally a bad move and b) will make you look worse.