Book 2 – Page 32

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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Alexei P » Tue May 18, 2010 12:51 pm

CelebrenIthil wrote:Awesome! Did you draw this?! You're good! XD


Funny fact: I sketched this while listening to Lady Gaga's I Like It Rough. :D My taste in music is terrible
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Tue May 18, 2010 12:59 pm

gazes_also wrote:The "deal" you referring to would be the flat out deception of Ansom and croaking him under a flag of truce? One would definitely want to do business with that guy again, wouldn't you?
Funny how Charlie gets ripped for being a smart negotiator and going by the letter on his contracts, but Parson is a good guy so it's ok for him to lie and negotiate in bad faith.


Point well taken.

While I wasn't a forumite on OotS when that happened, my opinion about it was that yep, it was a douchey move. Very practical (in the short term anyway), but vile.

The zombcano is similar. It made for a very epic ending (just like Bogroll got his CMoA through the aforementioned subterfuge), but from a moral point of view it is suspect. Just like that Queen, forgot her name, in the first book of Narnia, who utters a spell to destroy the world to deny victory to her enemy and sister.

Alexei P wrote:Funny fact: I sketched this while listening to Lady Gaga's I Like It Rough. :D


TMI, maybe?

I'll even hazard some context dialogue for that sketch:

Maggie: Now that we are ... alone ...
Parson: But what about Wanda?
Maggie: Boop Wanda! But first-
Parson: Ok-ok, but could you um, wear the Bogroll suit?
The whole point of this is lost if you keep it a secret.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Alexei P » Tue May 18, 2010 1:09 pm

BLANDCorporatio wrote:I'll even hazard some context dialogue for that sketch:

Maggie: Now that we are ... alone ...
Parson: But what about Wanda?
Maggie: Boop Wanda! But first-
Parson: Ok-ok, but could you um, wear the Bogroll suit?


To the drawing table!

...no. :lol: :lol:
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Tue May 18, 2010 1:21 pm

Yeah, let's be the next Penny Arcade!

.... nah.

(EDIT: you could prolly best pull that off alone. If you start a webcomic, sig it, you've got one reader at least who is not in your zipcode).

PS:

the_tick_rules wrote:Holy crap, way to work the tool.


I saw what you did there (finally).

You should be ashamed, ASHAMED I say, of yourself.
The whole point of this is lost if you keep it a secret.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby raphfrk » Tue May 18, 2010 4:11 pm

Alexei P wrote:Which means the story can now unfold in one of 2 ways: Parson assumes command and is the "ruthless genius" again (whereupon GK wins) or he backs out of that mindset and tries to avoid unnecessary casualties (whereupon GK loses).


Alternatively, he might eventually choose ruthlessness as the lesser of 2 evils, though I guess that is option 1, except with a time delay.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Goshen » Tue May 18, 2010 9:42 pm

Apologies if someone has pointed this out already: Maggie was definitely prepared, waiting for a moment like this. She wanted Parson for warlord, but she had to wait until the moment Stanley was deciding who to appoint before casting her spell. If she had tried to get Stanley to demote Ansom, it would have been too contrary to Stanley's wishes and the spell might not have taken. As I said before, he completely internalized her suggestion spell making his own "justification" for appointing the hamster.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Oberon » Wed May 19, 2010 1:24 am

gazes_also wrote:
Oberon wrote:
gazes_also wrote:As I also pointed out Parson was an unknown quantity, Charlie took a larger than expected loss but got the measure of his opponent. Longterm that price may prove to have been acceptable based on the knowledge gained. I still maintain Parson is no great shakes as a negotiator and speculation about him working a deal with any royal is laughable.
Yeah, laughable. Because the one deal he worked out with a royal previously, something about surrendering, really didn't play out for Parson very well. [/sarcasm]

The "deal" you referring to would be the flat out deception of Ansom and croaking him under a flag of truce? One would definitely want to do business with that guy again, wouldn't you?
Funny how Charlie gets ripped for being a smart negotiator and going by the letter on his contracts, but Parson is a good guy so it's ok for him to lie and negotiate in bad faith.
I'm not making any excuses for Parson. Like him or hate him, he is as he is portrayed. All I'm saying is that you do him a disservice by claiming that he isn't capable of sharp negotiation. He killed Ansom via treachery. Boo hoo, he is a bad person for winning by trickery. Fine. Argue his methods all you like, but if the subject is results, your arguments vanish.

Speculation is fine, and we can speculate over hypotheticals forever. But if we look at facts, we see that Parson has been remarkably good at his negotiations. You can dismiss this if you like, you can claim all kinds of hypothetical consequences we have not seen come to pass as yet. But no one can deny the facts of the matter:
You say "speculation about him working a deal with any royal is laughable", and yet in the single case we have seen in fact and not in speculation Parson managed to convince a royal to accept his surrender. This resulted in the death of the royal, 2 levels for Bogroll, and the unfortunate death of Bogroll. It also saved the GK Side. How can this possibly be seen as "laughable"? It is the epitome of success!

And I've previously pointed out two other negotiations Parson initiated which saved his Side both times. Yes, he ate some negative consequences: He owes Charlie about 9 Mathamancy calculations. As I see it, balanced against the dissolution of your Side, this is a trivial negative.
He has also managed to cause a negotiation target to initiate an ill-advised attack. And this is after he caused that same target to espouse viewpoints which the targets allies all seemed to indicate as being ill-advised. Clever stuff, and all positive, with zero negative.

Here is Parson's negotiation record:

Negotiation: Convinced Charlie to jack up his rates to the point where TV would not hire him to go after Stanley.
Result: Stanley not slain, Side saved. "Side saved" includes Parson's life, BTW. Negative: Owed 12 predictions to Charley.

Negotiation: Convinced Wanda to not run after Stanley to "save" him.
Result: Had a Master Class Croakamancer on hand to lead the undead in a dance fight, saved the Side. Negative: None, Stanley didn't need saving.

Negotiation: Convinced Ansom that Parson was surrendering.
Result: Ansom dead, RCC w/o a CWL, the CWL bonus, and the Artifact bonus. Side saved. Negative: Lost 1 Garrison unit (Bogroll). Hypothetical negative: No one will fall for that trick again. Boo hoo, it saved the side. Any negative, and this is a light one, is worth preventing Side loss and death of all Units including Parson. And that is assuming that this hypothetical negative even applies... Since all of the RCC at the site died, who is to say that Parson has a bad rep for tricking Ansom?

So you can hold the opinion that Parson isn't a good negotiator. Balanced against three outright saves of his entire Side due to his sharp negotiation, and the other events Parson has managed to cause to occur due to his negotiations, I think that your speculation that Parson isn't a good negotiator has a long way to go and a lot of facts to provide to be convincing. Or was there demonstrated failures you wished to cite to prop up your arguments? I seem to have missed them. Sure, Parson can't ring up a Side and get them to do anything he wants. That is not failure. But looking at the things he has brought about via diplomacy, I just don't see any support for the opinion that Parson is not a very capable diplomat.
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Zeroberon wrote:So we know with 100% certainty that THIS IS HOW TRI-LINKS WORK, PERIOD END OF STORY.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Ditto » Wed May 19, 2010 10:10 am

Convincing Charlie to pricegouge TV: Good example. Both sides got something, both gave up something, and there was the potential for the deal to not go through. That's negotiation.

Saying "Wanda, you don't need to save Stanley because I took care of it." and having, y'know, actually taken care of it, isn't an example of negotiation. Wanda says 'You know you couldn't stop me' because she has a duty to go save him; the circumstances necessitating his saving no longer exist; therefore, Parson COULD have just ordered her to stay.

Saying 'Hey Ansom, I'm surrendering!' and Ansom seeing a Hamster-shaped person walk up and offer his sword is not an example of negotiation. And also yeah, no one will fall for it again, but as you say that's not really a concern. It's immaterial whether it's underhanded or not - as you say, it was definitely effective and saved the side - but it's not negotiation.

I'm not coming down hard on either side of the question either, but I do not think those examples are sufficient to say Parson is an experienced and skilled negotiator. He's capable enough of sparring with Charlie, which I think is indication enough he's got the chops, but I wouldn't go so far as to say it's been demonstrated in a solid fashion in the comic as yet.
SteveMB wrote:The question is getting Wanda to honor the offer. They could keep going back and forth: offer, honor, offer, honor....
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Alexei P » Wed May 19, 2010 10:42 am

Don't forget the most important of all: convinced Charlie, who was holding all the cards at the time, to delay attacking GK for one turn. Skilled negotiator or not, Parson has at least demonstrated a keen ability to gauge which hooks his opponents are most likely to bite on.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby oslecamo2 » Wed May 19, 2010 12:34 pm

Alexei P wrote:Don't forget the most important of all: convinced Charlie, who was holding all the cards at the time, to delay attacking GK for one turn. Skilled negotiator or not, Parson has at least demonstrated a keen ability to gauge which hooks his opponents are most likely to bite on.


+1

And don't forget when he provokes Ansom into just sending his Jetsone forces instead of zerg rushing the walls, allowing Seizemore to gain some levels and geting two thousand uncroackeds out of the deal while severly hurting the oponent's moral.

Now that's the sign of a good manipulator! He has two enemies with overpowering power knocking at his door and he makes them dance to the Hamster's music while wearing them down.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby multilis » Wed May 19, 2010 12:36 pm

"Skilled negotiator or not"

Parson is also at a disadvantage compared to Charlie... he is usually weak and has almost everyone ready to kill his side, and must answer to a leader who might screw up/not accept some deals and is busy alienating other sides (eg holy war). He is under compulsion to find a way to *win* rather than surrender with these conditions.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Ditto » Wed May 19, 2010 12:54 pm

Quite. Drawing the zerg rush is a great example of manipulating your enemy - but that's strategy, and then tactics. Negotiation may be part of your strategy, but they're not synonymous.
SteveMB wrote:The question is getting Wanda to honor the offer. They could keep going back and forth: offer, honor, offer, honor....
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Ansan Gotti » Wed May 19, 2010 12:57 pm

I don't understand how anyone can maintain that Parson is not a skilled negotiator. He knows exactly what his optimum and bottom-line goals are, he strives to obtain all of the information he can about his negotiating opponents, he knows the importance of subterfuge and misdirection, and he is able to gauge skillfully his opponents' reactions and hot button issues and adapt on the fly to reach a favorable result. He also knows when to walk away.

These are all bedrock tenets of negotiation. He is the Perfect Warlord, and part of that skillset (in Erfworld, at least) definitely includes negotiation.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby gazes_also » Wed May 19, 2010 1:30 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:I don't understand how anyone can maintain that Parson is not a skilled negotiator. He knows exactly what his optimum and bottom-line goals are, he strives to obtain all of the information he can about his negotiating opponents, he knows the importance of subterfuge and misdirection, and he is able to gauge skillfully his opponents' reactions and hot button issues and adapt on the fly to reach a favorable result. He also knows when to walk away.

These are all bedrock tenets of negotiation. He is the Perfect Warlord, and part of that skillset (in Erfworld, at least) definitely includes negotiation.


Not quite, those are the skills of a con artist.
The bedrock of negotiation is forming a relationship with some level of mutual trust. Otherwise you get what you want in the short-term but can never make another deal.
Any royal would be insane to make a deal with Parson because HE CANNOT BE TRUSTED. Also Parson would be nuts to make a deal with Charlie because Charlie will be quite justified in booping him at the most advantageous moment.

Parson has no negotiating credibility left. That's the sign of a bad negotiator.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby oslecamo2 » Wed May 19, 2010 2:01 pm

gazes_also wrote:Not quite, those are the skills of a con artist.

There's really not much diference really.

gazes_also wrote:The bedrock of negotiation is forming a relationship with some level of mutual trust. Otherwise you get what you want in the short-term but can never make another deal.

Only if you're bad at it. Great politicians/con schemers lie, get away with it, and then fool the same person or group again and again.

gazes_also wrote:Any royal would be insane to make a deal with Parson because HE CANNOT BE TRUSTED.

Yet Ansom let himself be fooled twice, first when he attacked with just jetsone troops, then when he tought Hamster would actually surrender peacefully.

gazes_also wrote: Also Parson would be nuts to make a deal with Charlie because Charlie will be quite justified in booping him at the most advantageous moment.

Desesperate times call for desesperate measures. Charile is bound to backstab you anyway later, but Wanda is in danger NOW!

gazes_also wrote:Parson has no negotiating credibility left. That's the sign of a bad negotiator.

Credibility is not really needed. Threats, blackmailing, baits and provocation can do wonders as we've already seen.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Ansan Gotti » Wed May 19, 2010 2:20 pm

gazes_also wrote:Not quite, those are the skills of a con artist.
The bedrock of negotiation is forming a relationship with some level of mutual trust. Otherwise you get what you want in the short-term but can never make another deal.
Any royal would be insane to make a deal with Parson because HE CANNOT BE TRUSTED. Also Parson would be nuts to make a deal with Charlie because Charlie will be quite justified in booping him at the most advantageous moment.
Parson has no negotiating credibility left. That's the sign of a bad negotiator.


I think you are adhering to an overly romanticized view of what negotiation is. I also think your view of how negotiations are likely going to proceed in the future is not supported by the text. People negotiate in this world, and there are already textual indications that Parson and Charlie are still willing to deal with each other (see: negotiations over the secret of the zombie volcano). I'm sure Parson and one or more royals could also deal (apart from the fact that sworn enemies seldom are at that point, Parson's trustworthiness aside), given the fact that there are mechanisms in this world to make negotiations magically binding (see: math calculations, NDAs, etc. etc.).

EDIT: I also note that nation-to-nation diplomacy is fraught with nuance, treachery and intrigue (see: Machiavelli, Bismarck, realpolitik). Sometimes you might not like a nation, but the reality is you still have to negotiate with them. In such cases, you don't usually get to pick who that nation forwards as their chief negotiator.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Ditto » Wed May 19, 2010 2:37 pm

I think Royals are deeply distrustful of Parson, but like was said - politicians do it all the time. Sometimes that's just government, and a lack of an effective voice being heard in opposition... but whatev. Charlie knows what he's doing. He doesn't need to backstab Parson, it's all right there in the fine print. That's what Haggar-deal-style coercion is for! Making someone a deal they can't refuse is still making a deal you can honor. :D
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby gazes_also » Wed May 19, 2010 3:25 pm

Ansan Gotti wrote:
gazes_also wrote:Not quite, those are the skills of a con artist.
The bedrock of negotiation is forming a relationship with some level of mutual trust. Otherwise you get what you want in the short-term but can never make another deal.
Any royal would be insane to make a deal with Parson because HE CANNOT BE TRUSTED. Also Parson would be nuts to make a deal with Charlie because Charlie will be quite justified in booping him at the most advantageous moment.
Parson has no negotiating credibility left. That's the sign of a bad negotiator.


I think you are adhering to an overly romanticized view of what negotiation is. I also think your view of how negotiations are likely going to proceed in the future is not supported by the text. People negotiate in this world, and there are already textual indications that Parson and Charlie are still willing to deal with each other (see: negotiations over the secret of the zombie volcano). I'm sure Parson and one or more royals could also deal (apart from the fact that sworn enemies seldom are at that point, Parson's trustworthiness aside), given the fact that there are mechanisms in this world to make negotiations magically binding (see: math calculations, NDAs, etc. etc.).

EDIT: I also note that nation-to-nation diplomacy is fraught with nuance, treachery and intrigue (see: Machiavelli, Bismarck, realpolitik). Sometimes you might not like a nation, but the reality is you still have to negotiate with them. In such cases, you don't usually get to pick who that nation forwards as their chief negotiator.


I'm not talking about everyone joining hands and singing kum-by-yah. I'm talking about being able to have an agreement where, within set terms and parameters, there is agreement because I will get what I want as long as you get what you want. Even enemies can make a mutually beneficial deal because there is some trust that the other guy will hold up his end. Parson can't be trusted to value the benefit above cheating the partner. It's the scorpion and the fox basically.
The only way anyone would make a deal with Parson is if they're reasonably sure of booping him before he boops them.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby Ansan Gotti » Wed May 19, 2010 4:11 pm

gazes_also wrote:I'm not talking about everyone joining hands and singing kum-by-yah. I'm talking about being able to have an agreement where, within set terms and parameters, there is agreement because I will get what I want as long as you get what you want. Even enemies can make a mutually beneficial deal because there is some trust that the other guy will hold up his end. Parson can't be trusted to value the benefit above cheating the partner. It's the scorpion and the fox basically.
The only way anyone would make a deal with Parson is if they're reasonably sure of booping him before he boops them.


Again, there are magically binding ways of enforcing adherence to agreements in Erfworld. That limits scorpion/fox scenarios, for the clever negotiator.

Even in our world, however, trust is seldom the sole foundation of an agreement between nations (see: trust but verify, per Ronald Reagan). A nation makes an agreement for its own perceived net benefit. Mutuality is only a factor when the other side is perceived to be getting too large of a benefit, and there is a corresponding threat from the other side. And nations on opposing "sides" will almost never be naive about these agreements. If they are, then they will probably pay for it.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 32

Postby ftl » Wed May 19, 2010 4:12 pm

gazes_also wrote:
I'm not talking about everyone joining hands and singing kum-by-yah. I'm talking about being able to have an agreement where, within set terms and parameters, there is agreement because I will get what I want as long as you get what you want. Even enemies can make a mutually beneficial deal because there is some trust that the other guy will hold up his end. Parson can't be trusted to value the benefit above cheating the partner. It's the scorpion and the fox basically.
The only way anyone would make a deal with Parson is if they're reasonably sure of booping him before he boops them.


I'm not convinced. If you make a deal with Parson - "you do this if I'll do that," be explicit about what each side has to do - Parson will keep his end of the deal. He's kept his deal with Charlie for the calculations, after all, and I think that's the only deal of that sort that he's ended up making.

If you make an agreement of the form "I will get what I want as long as you will get what you want," he'll hold it up - but he never made any of those in TBfGK, because "what you want" in that case was croaking/capturing Parson and ending his side. According to your definition of a skilled negotiator, Parson would have to have lost to be considered a good negotiator?

gazes_also, at the end of the day you're arguing against results. Parson was put in a situation where everybody around wanted his city, and he talked to them and by talking got himself an advantage at their expense - goaded Ansom into attacking wrong, convinced Charlie to let Stanley live and to not take the city. Your argument comes down to "Well, in the FUTURE, this might come back to bite him because now people won't trust him." It might and it might not - we'll have to see how he does in negotiations when he's no longer backed up against a wall, in new situations. I see no reason why he won't do as well as he did before - when he has actual bargaining power and something of his own to offer. But at the end of the day, what he did at TBfGK worked and saved his side. Do you at least see why your argument isn't at all convincing?
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