Advocacy is not a zero-sum game

Here’s an interesting article in The Economist about how environmentalists and logging companies in Canada have found a way to cooperate. The most interesting quote is from Avram Lazar, head of a logging trade group:

“There was a general feeling”, he recalls, “that our differences in reality were smaller than the differences we presented in the public debates. We had fallen into cultural role-playing that wasn’t getting either side the outcomes we were looking for.”

Interesting, no?  The article notes that we in the States are a little less mature about negotiating on behalf of our differing interests. Conflicts tend to take on a knock-down drag-out tone here. Why? Is it because we are soaking in a 24 hour news cycle that will put us on television more if we are nastier? Maybe. Phrasemongers get more airtime, but they accomplish little.


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