Noah denkt™ - The Power of Balanced Reasoning
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Are you a tough negotiator?
Dialogue with the Alter Ego on a match-up between resilience versus shock and awe, first drafted on March 3,
published on March 4, 2016

Question by Noah denkt™ (Nd): The Rubio-Trump exchange about being or not being of Presidential material
which was raised most prominently in the pre-Super Tuesday Debate in Houston (hosted by CNN) keeps
chewing away in our mind. In fact, there is a set of questions surrounding that “tough negotiator” issue that has
bugged us probably forever? Can we run them by you?

Answer by Alter Ego of Noah denkt™ (AE)? Of course.

Nd: Well then. Does our Alter Ego believe that people who are drawn to public service and who hence have
some predisposition to prioritize the common good over the ambition for personal gain can possibly be tough
negotiators? Is it not true that these public “servants” are a little more drawn to give in to opposing demands
since they, at the bottom of their heart, are more dependent on being recognized by others than those who
freely live their naked ambition in the business world?

Trump wants to be recognized too. It is probably fair to say that his desire for receiving attention is just as
outsized as everything else about him.

Nd: But isn’t there a difference between looking for admiration and looking for recognition?

AE: Don’t think so. It seems pretty clear to us that his candidacy is quite inspired by the hope to be showered in
love by the voters.

Nd: So what does that mean for his negotiating tactic once being in the White House?

AE: Well, it most likely means that he will continue his lifelong strategy which is to blast and bulldoze any
opponents away right upfront in order to avoid prolonged resistance. In other words, he will be tough and
bombastic from the get-go but probably lose substantial steam once he encounters the kind of resilience that
only Asian minds trained in centuries of Marshal Art-philosophy can bring to bear.

Nd: The scenario you are laying out here presupposes however that there is a dynamic in play where he,
Trump, has approached the Martial Art opponent first and not vice versa?

AE: True. The Asian strong and stamina approach works best when being on the receiving end of a solicitation.
If it is the other way round, the Ninya approach would have to first trick Mr. Trump into becoming the victim of
his own presumption of invincibility before than dealing him the final blow.  That is more difficult to do, however,
and clever warriors know that you do not unnecessarily engage in battles that by their very nature are always

Nd: Got it. But let us get back to our original question:  Is it not true that people, driven to public service lack the
sheer primal thrust to be tough enough in defending their goals in the face of opposition?

AE: Well, in our humble view, this probably depends on the circumstances and the individual. Obviously, there
can be no doubt that people like Chris Kyle, the American Sniper, or
Steve Osbourne, the retired New York City
Cop, are no push-overs.

Nd: How about the suit-wearing career-types, the ones that just like us have a hard time to get a waiter’s
attention fast?  Don’t you think that these career politicians would find it a lot more difficult to stare down a hard-
knuckled Russian President ?

AE: President Obama is a career politician too. And he certainly has grit. Just think about the tremendous
leadership he showed before, during and after the Bin-Laden raid.

Nd: You are right, his decision to launch the raid was just as gutsy as his near simultaneous camouflage
appearance at the White House Correspondence Dinner at the time. Who knows if
Donald Trump, - in a similar
situation -, could have resisted the narcissistic impulse to gain some extra pre-raid attention for the impending
daredevil drama. Still, it is probably also fair to argue that Mr. Obama isn’t what we have called the bland policy
type. His personal charisma is of a different, more intensive sort. The stereotype we have in mind is closer to
“Flash”, the Disney character, portrayed in the movie “Zootopia”. He/she is a tad bit too governmental in
appearance, a little too “comme-il-faut” for the position, and quite a bit too standard in his/her rhetoric.  So, can
people like that negotiate tough for the best possible trade or nuclear deal? And, can they do it better than the
Trump types?

AE: They surely do not intimidate their negotiating partners just as much as the Trumps of this world do. But
the Marco Rubio-types can still bring quite a bit of resilience to the table. Which of the two works better though
may well depend on those who sit on the other side of the table….
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What makes a tough negotiator, strong defense versus strong offense, Resilience versus shock and
awe, primal thrust versus mental discipline, the psychology of a public servant versus the psychology of
an entrepreneur, the likes of Marco Rubio versus Donald Trump