For Your Consideration: Negotiating

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

One of the important points of  negotiating that I learned early was that you take nothing off the table, no matter how outrageous or unobtainable. You come to the table with everything you want, EVERYTHING. One of my favorite bloggers is Hecate, a Wiccan lawyer who works in DC. Her comments on “Yes We Can!”

It’s probably just me, but I’m a huge negotiation geek. It was my favorite class in law school. Every single exercise, my partner and I got buckets and buckets more than anyone else. As we were doing one of the exercises, someone in the class sighed out loud, “They’re doing it again.” There’s an art to negotiation, and a huge part of that art is going in knowing who and what you’re up against. Plus, negotiation is great fun. I’ve made a very respectable living for years based, inter alia, on my ability to negotiate (and to go for the jugular when people won’t negotiate with me). So it’s driven me batshit insane to watch the Obama administration and the Senate Dems “negotiate” and I use that term loosely, themselves into a losing position on health care reform.

And from Rep. Anthony Weiner, (D-NY), from an excerpt of an interview at FDL

Weiner didn’t get an invite to tomorrow’s health care summit, but he’ll be watching and even live-blogging the proceedings, he told me. He found its utility limited. “If we want to spend hours tomorrow highlighting bankruptcy of GOP ideas, fine. But we mustn’t delude ourselves. When we gave up public option, we didn’t get a single Republican. When we gave up national exchanges for a state exchange, we didn’t get a single Republican. We keep negotiating with ourselves.” If the summit is meant to contrast the two parties on the issue, Weiner was fine with it, but if it was seen as an opportunity to convert Republicans to the cause of fixing health care, he advised, “Good luck with that.”

I wanted to know from someone who has been in the room for these discussions whether he thought the votes were actually there to pass the bill, regardless of what fixes could be made in reconciliation. Eric Cantor’s memo today certainly suggested otherwise, as have multiple news reports. I asked flat-out, does this thing have the votes?

Weiner replied, “Well, we passed the bill once.” Obviously, he said, the abortion language was a concern, and he admitted, “I don’t know how it gets resolved.” He reiterated the constant dynamic of dropping things like the public option, which he thinks has majority support in the House and Senate and among 72% of the American people, and getting nothing in exchange. In the final analysis, he said, “I’m not sure what we’re doing, and I’m pretty tied in.”

(emphasis mine)

There’s this little paperback called “Getting to Yes” that the Dems need to buy and pass out to all of the members of the Obama administration and the Dems in the Senate. Well, first they need to lock Harry Reid in his locker. Then, they need to read “Getting to Yes.”

(emphasis mine)

Can we “get to yes” with Obama at the helm and with the DNC/OFA as the crew? After today, I’m with Weiner, good luck with that.


Skip to comment form

    • TMC on February 26, 2010 at 02:54

    and Hecate.

    • Edger on February 26, 2010 at 03:03

    “Yes We Can beg” was great eleven dimensional strategery.

    Everyone knows that in any kind of negotiations the most effective and smart thing to do is to start by asking for half or less of what you want, and maneuver the opponent into feeling all bipartisany and giving you more than what you really wanted in the first place because the long repressed intrinsic humanitarian goodness of their shriveled little black hearts finally has a chance to come out and shine, right?

    I mean… ummmmm… uhhhhh… well…

    Oh never mind. 😉

    • TMC on February 26, 2010 at 04:07

    on health care hypocrisy. Sorry I’m too tired to clean up the HTML coding and I HATE HTML anyway.

  1. The Democrats should have started from the position of enacting single payer health, seizing the murder by spreadsheet fraudulent profits, putting said companies out of business, and putting the executives of said companies in prison.

    Then, reluctantly accepting a public option and extremely rigorous regulations.  THAT was the compromise.  Because the promise of the former would have had the health insurance industry and their Republican allies peeing their pants.

    The Republicans already say the Democrats are “socialists”.

    This is what makes me say the Democrats never had any true intention of solving this problem and that it has all been an elaborate dance from the very beginning.  They didn’t fight for the public option, but the public option was already the week kneed compromise flavor of what needed to be done.

  2. So it’s driven me batshit insane to watch the Obama administration and the Senate Dems “negotiate” and I use that term loosely, themselves into a losing position on health care reform.

    How do we know that this “losing position” isn’t EXACTLY WHAT THEY WANTED FROM THE BEGINNING?

  3. of Obama’s belly up negotiation strategy is that he assumes that there is actually someone on the other side to negotiate with.

    From all appearances today, Obama apparently still believes that the Party of No is just playing coy, and that despite all evidence over the past year to the contrary, that eventually they’ll come around on a few votes for him.

    Hopefully, the President will learn from the embarrassing spanking he took today that this is no longer Bill Clinton’s Republican party, and that the only person in the room to negotiate with is himself.

  4. Enough said

    Lobbyists you can count on

    • RiaD on February 27, 2010 at 01:40

    i always go in asking for double or more than what i really actually want/need.

    now my experience is only with getting donations for haunted houses but…. well it’s the same but on a bigger scale, is all.

    & part of it is in knowing who you’re asking too.

    the cheapest stingiest man in town donated because i picked my time wisely & knew my adversary. the store was filled w/carpenters getting supplies & i asked mr. jake for a 50 pound box of nails…. about 30 minutes later i walked out with the 2 pounds i actually needed. it was the first time he’d ever donated to anything.

    never Never Never ask for less than you need…always more.

  5. Instead of arguing about who pays for what I would rather now what IT is going to be.

    Will my genetic profile be used against me.

    Can I appeal my permanent digital medical record.

    Why can I Google popular drugs and see lawyers seeking my business.

    Will I, my family and friends have any informed choice over our health decisions or will the globalist eugenics vaccines be forced upon us at gunpoint.

    Are natural herbs and suppliments to be banned in favor of profit driven (32,000% markup) petrochemical synthetics.

    How can business start up when we don’t know how big of a shafting everybody gets via “health care reform” with these sociopathic parasites in charge.

Comments have been disabled.