Author Topic: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you  (Read 10861 times)

rightleft22

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USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« on: July 09, 2018, 09:50:38 AM »
weird article this morning about Breast Feeding Resolutions - maybe its a joke
https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/world/us-opposition-to-breast-feeding-resolution-stuns-world-health-officials/ar-AAzLnQT?ocid=spartanntp

Interesting part was the use of threats to get its way. I think there is a time and place for such tactics but a breast feeding resolution? I guess everyone ends up knowing their place.

Any supporter of Trump starting to get uncomfortable with the character of the man they elected?

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2018, 11:28:17 AM »
Mike Pence was afraid he might accidentally see a breast?

But the US has frequently bullied other nations on the international stage, although it is usually about weightier matters like the death penalty, Israel, regime change, budget, accountability, etc.

As the article points out, the US regularly uses heavy leverage against any weakening of patent protection when it comes to third world health care.

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2018, 11:37:06 AM »
There's other articles that are more neutral in the description, but I didn't find a link to the resolution so it's hard to be sure what happened.  Other articles note the US is a leader in the promotion of breast feeding globally, though we are also one of the leaders in the production and promotion of alternatives.  There's a long history, a lot of it bad, with formula in the third world.

I suspect, but again can't tell with the limited quoting the articles provide - which all seems to have the same source - that the issue the US objected to had to do with some form of prescriptive text.  Effectively, language that made it sound like an order to discourage alternatives.

EDIT - Honestly, shouldn't a basic part of the story be to explain why the US took the action?  I didn't see that in most of the articles.

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2018, 12:35:19 PM »
I guess you mean "Why the US said they took the action?" Most articles are pretty clear it is to protect business interests of formula producers.

Normally I go to fox news to find out the administration view, but they don't seem to have an article on it.

It is odd to have no quotes in the article from anyone in the US delegation, or a statement that says they reached out for comment with no response.

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2018, 01:14:00 PM »
That's in my view, TheDrake, because they don't want to clutter the conclusion that you said is the reason the US did (which, I seriously doubt).  Honestly, the "story" is the Trump administration hates foreign babies, a reasonable explanation might get in the way of the story.

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2018, 03:21:21 PM »
Well, we can count on the tweeter in chief:

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The failing NY Times Fake News story today about breast feeding must be called out. The U.S. strongly supports breast feeding but we don’t believe women should be denied access to formula. Many women need this option because of malnutrition and poverty.

And as usual, there's nothing in the measure that would deny anyone access to formula. It just says it should be discouraged in favor of breast feeding. Nobody is trying to ban formula.

From HHS:

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"The United States was fighting to protect women’s abilities to make the best choices for the nutrition of their babies. Many women are not able to breastfeed for a variety of reasons, these women should not be stigmatized; they should be equally supported with information and access to alternatives for the health of themselves and their babies," Caitlin Oakley said in a statement to The Hill.

The one thing we actually have reported about the draft resolution is:

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It pushed to remove a phrase from the draft text that would exhort governments to “protect, promote and support breast-feeding”.

That doesn't sound anything like "denying options for women that can't breast feed".

I'm going to go with giant industry lobbying on this one.

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2018, 03:23:18 PM »
I do think it is delightful that the administration backed down when Russia got involved. :D

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2018, 04:46:05 PM »
Did you find a link to the whole thing though?  I saw that out of context snippet in every article, but I can't think of a good reason not to link to the whole thing.

I note that a phrase like that can mean lots of different things, including things like making it a violation of law in a country not to breast feed, or requiring a doctor's sign off for a prescription for formula.  Don't think first world, think of how an authoritarian group that wants to suppress women could interpret to suppress women, with the "blessing" of the West.

Again though, it's really hard to interpret from the slight coverage.

rightleft22

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2018, 04:58:31 PM »
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-44772686

According to the Times report on Sunday based on interviews with dozens of meeting participants, US negotiations in Geneva objected to the resolution encouraging breastfeeding around the world and allegedly resorted to intimidation tactics to bully other countries into dropping it.

I would really like to know who the dozens of meeting participants that gave interviews were.  It seems odd to me that this issue and requested change in language would really make any difference either way. Not a battle I would fight either way. 

Difficult to know what is real. There have been a few stories indicating that the American experience of how a meeting went is different then how others in the meeting saw it. I suspect that’s always the case to some extent but I would love to have been a fly on the wall for the G7 meetings.

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2018, 05:20:48 PM »
Look how carefully snipped this quote is:

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The resolution was passed when it was introduced by Russia, but the US did successfully strike out language calling for WHO support to nations trying to prevent "inappropriate promotion of foods for infants and young children", and added the phrase "evidence based" to certain provisions.

That's so snipped as to be misleading.  The article itself claims interviews with "dozens" of participants.  That's a stunning claim when you think about the current state of reporting.  This is one of the weirdest write ups I've seen in a while, it's almost like its bait, waiting for a fake news claim.

So, on the one hand, we have an account that has gone out of its way not to present the full picture, on the other, we have some potentially plausible and implausible rationales.  How would anyone get any truth out of this?

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #10 on: July 09, 2018, 05:36:01 PM »
Well, there is no "whole thing". This was a draft proposal being worked on prior to session, so there's no official record of proposed language that circulated, and no leaked copy. And the administration certainly hasn't gone out of their way to publish any additional information to explain why they felt so strongly about it.

Do you find anything odd about this?

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Many women need this option because of malnutrition and poverty.

That's a very strange thing to say, Mr. Trump. How is baby formula a better solution because of poverty?

Quotes below have been edited from the original article, and I have not indicated where I removed paragraphs for brevity.

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Formula milk companies are continuing to use aggressive, clandestine and often illegal methods to target mothers in the poorest parts of the world to encourage them to choose powdered milk over breastfeeding, a new investigation shows.

A Guardian/Save the Children investigation in some of the most deprived areas of the Philippines found that Nestlé and three other companies were offering doctors, midwives and local health workers free trips to lavish conferences, meals, tickets to shows and the cinema and even gambling chips, earning their loyalty. This is a clear violation of Philippine law.

At the same time, powerful lobby groups have been working to curtail government legislation regulating formula marketing and promotion, in the Philippines and across the world.

Stick thin, her cheek and collarbones sticking out, Icawat was visibly malnourished, as was Trista, whose swollen stomach stuck out beneath a faded pink Little Mermaid T-shirt. The average cost of Nestogen is 2,000 pesos (£28) a month but Icawat could afford to spend only 800 pesos.

The World Health Organisation’s international code explicitly prevents formula companies directly targeting mothers and healthcare professionals, and restricts advertising.

At a health centre in Malabon, midwife Grace Shelo Almarez admits that before she was given training, she was among the many wined and dined by Nestlé, Mead Johnson and Wyeth and offered numerous trips to conferences. As recently as October Nestlé offered her a trip to Iloilo, which she declined.

article

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #11 on: July 09, 2018, 05:54:54 PM »
Honestly, I have some background history on this.  I had relatives that were in the PeaceCorp in the 70's and absolutely won't buy any Nestle product because of their history on infant formula from back then.  I'm preinclined to be suspicious on this.  I still think this reporting blows.

There is a limited window for using formula in preference to breastmilk, usually related to sickness of the mother (including, for example HIV).  The formula companies lied for years about how their products were better than breastmilk for babies, and many babies were made sick or even died from formula misuse in places without clean water or refrigeration. 

But the idea that adding "evidence based" to "certain provisions" is news?  That's so vague as to be impossible to parse.  What provisions did it get added to?  Was it reasonable to put it there?  I can't tell, and neither can anyone else.

This could be a corrupt corporatists play, or a totally legitimate defense, but it's virtually impossible to tell from a report that is 95% interpretation rather than reporting of the facts.

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2018, 09:11:38 PM »
I note that a phrase like that can mean lots of different things, including things like making it a violation of law in a country not to breast feed, or requiring a doctor's sign off for a prescription for formula.  Don't think first world, think of how an authoritarian group that wants to suppress women could interpret to suppress women, with the "blessing" of the West.

Lol, so if this piece is to be believed http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/07/29/does-donald-trump-really-hate-breastfeeding-another-media-mis-report.html, it's pretty much what I said.  The US was objecting to taking the decision to use formula away from a mother and putting it in the hands of a doctor or worse other authorities (which, again think third world, may involve substantially restricting or elimination of a woman's actual choice in the matter).

I think the most interesting quote, is the idea about what was behind the push in the first place:

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Why did officials like this Ecuadorian health minister try to make access to formula so difficult in the first place? It turns out, it wasn’t based on the science behind breastfeeding, but instead, the Western infatuation with the “breast is best” mantra. According to those familiar with the negotiations, the Ecuadorian minister wanted to force women to breastfeed because their babies were “less likely to start a war, because they feel their mother’s love through their breast milk.”

Is anyone willing to take a different position if the real push for the position the US was pushing back on was a magic thinking belief that we'll have less wars if babies take in love from their mother's breast milk?  And accordingly, women should not have the right to decide for themselves?

Crunch

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2018, 06:45:41 PM »
Any supporter of Trump starting to get uncomfortable with the character of the man they elected?

I doubt it. I, for one, am very happy to see the Trump administration push the idea that it’s the mother who should make the decision on whether or not to breastfeed her baby. The choice to breastfeed or use formula is something that should be up to a baby’s parents. Not sure why anyone would disagree with that but I’m pretty sure if Trump supports it, you’ll hate it on pure reflex.

Any supporter of MSNBC starting to get uncomfortable with the character of the media they selected?  ;D

rightleft22

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #14 on: August 01, 2018, 10:33:53 AM »
The administration could have done a better job explaining their position when the article came out.
Either way they win though. I've stopped paying attention to such stories.

Fenring

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #15 on: August 01, 2018, 10:35:47 AM »
The administration could have done a better job explaining their position when the article came out.
Either way they win though. I've stopped paying attention to such stories.

Stop paying attention to all other stories too and then you're good  :)

rightleft22

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #16 on: August 01, 2018, 02:06:22 PM »
:)
I have been much happier since I stopped paying attention. I am still interested in the Psychology behind the acceptance of a man such as Trump and the effectiveness of his communication style. (which I do detest)
 
 Trump is the master of the art of obfuscation. Even when obfuscation is the with holding of information that would help explain a decision it serves his purpose by proving an opportunity to hit back at dishonest media when the question a decision

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As Goldman documented the long and dangerous process of bringing at least a few of those responsible within the Guatemalan military to justice for this murder, he observed that those threatened by the investigation didn’t merely plant evidence to conceal their role. Framing someone else would be an obvious tactic, and the planted evidence would be assumed to be false. Rather, they produced too much conflicting evidence, too many witnesses and testimonials, too many possible stories. The goal was not to construct an airtight lie, but rather to multiply the possible hypotheses so prolifically that observers would despair of ever arriving at the truth. The circumstances of the bishop’s murder produced what Goldman terms an “endlessly exploitable situation,” full of leads that led nowhere and mountains of seized evidence, each factual element calling the others into question. “So much could be made and so much would be made to seem to connect,” Such is the power of ambiguity. - The Art of Political Murder by Francisco Goldman

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #17 on: August 01, 2018, 02:24:43 PM »
The administration could have done a better job explaining their position when the article came out.
Either way they win though. I've stopped paying attention to such stories.

I'm curious why you think this.  I saw no indication that the reporting media made any effort to explain the administration's position, in fact they deliberately went out of their way to leave that information out.

How could the administration do a better job explaining their position, if they are dealing with a media that refuses to cover their explanation?

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #18 on: August 01, 2018, 02:42:57 PM »
You can tweet about it, which Trump did, but with a typical lack of clarity. You can be more specific about any complaints rather than a vague handwaving. You could televise regular press briefings, available uncut through CSPAN. You could cultivate a less antagonistic relationship with the press, and be more willing to respond to questions. You could engage in diplomacy, and maybe get at least one other member of the UN to say they also disagreed and why. You could send a US health official out on a circuit to clarify, and perhaps most important you could say something like : "The US supports the science showing that breastfeeding leads to better infant health, but recognizes the important role that formula can play when this is not an option."

As opposed to preserving the right of formula companies to advertise, offer coupons masquerading as health pamphlets, etc.

rightleft22

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #19 on: August 01, 2018, 03:16:24 PM »
I agree the media did a horrible job and seemed to be more interested in reporting on the lack of information then on taking the time to get the information. That said I didn’t see the administration trying that hard to clarify. My suspicion is that ether way it works in the current administrations favor.

As an aside
I tried watching CNN for a week and can understand why the right would call it fake news. There was little news, and lots of editorial, opinion, speculation and projection especially from the panel facilitators.   
I also tried watching Fox news for a week and can understand why the left might call it fake news. There was little news, and lots of editorial, opinion, speculation and projection especially from the panel facilitators.     

obfuscation works because the main stream US media is letting it work. Why more people are not more concerned about the strategy of obfuscation is a concern.

Fenring

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #20 on: August 01, 2018, 03:34:34 PM »
I agree the media did a horrible job and seemed to be more interested in reporting on the lack of information then on taking the time to get the information.

Did they really do a horrible job? Or did they successfully do whatever it is they were intending to? As long you cease assuming their objective is to inform people of the truth things begin to make a lot more sense.

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #21 on: August 01, 2018, 03:54:27 PM »
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Although I would say TV journo jobs are really about eyeballs and engagement, not the exposing of truth. The same is true of non-TV, but less so. This applies more to America than others. Fox led the way, and CNN slobbered after them.

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #22 on: August 01, 2018, 04:03:20 PM »
It's more than just stupidity TheDrake, its confirmation bias so heavy that journalists don't even feel they need to ask for the truth.  They literally published speculation as the story, when they could have obtained the truth with a modicum of research.  A journalist should be fired for that.  It's literal yellow journalism.

I find particularly troubling, that it appears you believe the Administration should be obligated to go around the media to report a story accurately, rather than the media - whose very job is to report things accurately - should do so.  I mean most of what you claim they "should" do they already in fact have done.  The US is the leading promoter of pro-breast milk research as well as that of using formula.  We've followed a science first policy that's designed to put the real choice in the hands of the mother.

The history here though is such a mess, as there really is a history of truly evil behavior and misleading science by the formula companies.

Fenring

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #23 on: August 01, 2018, 04:15:00 PM »
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Never attribute malice or stupidity to actions that successfully nourish greed. If the same action could be attributed to malice, stupidity, or greed, I'll generally assume it's greed unless shown otherwise.

Seriati

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #24 on: August 01, 2018, 04:40:21 PM »
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Never attribute malice or stupidity to actions that successfully nourish greed. If the same action could be attributed to malice, stupidity, or greed, I'll generally assume it's greed unless shown otherwise.

It's not really primarily motivated by any of those things.  It's effectively religious thinking.  For the true believers, they publish stories that promote their ideology.

If it were truly greed, then with Fox's proven success (it's won the tv ratings war for years straight, including in the most coveted demographic) more station's would have adopted a slight conservative bent. 

If it were stupidity, the bias needle would swing both ways, not to mention they'd be likely to buy in to Trump's stories as well as the anti-Trump stories.

While it could be pure malice, it just doesn't seem a good explanation to explain the actions of so many different people.  No, it really is religion.  Trump is a direct threat to the world view of most journalists.  If he's successful they have to question their own beliefs about the right policies.  The cognitive dissonance is too great, ergo, they must conclude he's a liar, he's wrong, the positives we see are random occurrences uncorrelated to the policies (or more bizarrely are the results of the policies that were reversed).  That everything must have a secret evil motive and therefore we don't have to consider it logically but can resist it as a matter of principal (this comes up literally all the time).

rightleft22

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #25 on: August 01, 2018, 05:28:06 PM »
Quote
Did they really do a horrible job? Or did they successfully do whatever it is they were intending to? As long you cease assuming their objective is to inform people of the truth things begin to make a lot more sense.

As I indicated I don't view shows like CNN or Fox News reliable. That said there are still reporters and discussion Facilitators who hold to the objective of inform people.  Unfortunately I suspect you have to look outside the US

yossarian22c

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #26 on: August 05, 2018, 10:09:16 PM »
Quote
Did they really do a horrible job? Or did they successfully do whatever it is they were intending to? As long you cease assuming their objective is to inform people of the truth things begin to make a lot more sense.

As I indicated I don't view shows like CNN or Fox News reliable. That said there are still reporters and discussion Facilitators who hold to the objective of inform people.  Unfortunately I suspect you have to look outside the US

Honestly I don't find much of cable news to be informative. IMO the best US news service is NPR. I find them typically to be informative rather that prescriptive (in other words I feel like they give me information not tell me what to think).

TheDrake

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Re: USA negotiation tactics - how comfortable are you
« Reply #27 on: August 06, 2018, 09:12:20 AM »
Quote
It's not really primarily motivated by any of those things.  It's effectively religious thinking.  For the true believers, they publish stories that promote their ideology.

That's fair. If you really believe that Trump is burning down the country, you probably won't report very favorably - especially when there are millions of people who represent that point of view. News is always going to be reported with at least some humanity. When there is a structure fire, they don't normally present it from the arsonist's point of view.

Now, it is completely a matter of debate whether anything from Trump ought to fall into that category. But from a very rational perspective - not religion or pseudo-science, a narrative that trade wars, draconian immigration methods, environmental deregulation, increased deficit spending to support tax cuts and subsidies, as well as demeaning the decorum of the office... well it makes sense.

There's this question of "their ideology". Some ideology is a highly shared set of values, part of our common ethics. Other is more contentious. An example is the intractable debate on abortion. There is little question that the press presents this news from a perspective that limiting access to abortion is A Bad Thing. A right to lifer might well say, "That's unfair, why aren't they writing stories about all the unborn lives we might have just saved?"

So, yes, there is a bias toward a certain world view. I'm sure British soldiers were pretty upset at the biased coverage in the Boston Gazette of the Boston Massacre. They were writing that story from a point of view that saw British soldiers as an oppressive occupying force. Revere later illustrated the story, making it look like a bunch of soldiers calmly lined up and started firing into a crowd. The best historical accounts have a large number of unruly colonists taunting and throwing things at the small squad, in the confusion some soldiers fired.

Was this bad reporting, was it seditious, did it capture the sentiment of the public at the time, was it a critical and justified step toward our independence? I guess that depends as much on the reader's ideology as the author.