Thursday, March 19, 2009

How to hurt the alcohol companies - not

If you were a Senator from a part calling itself "Family First" you probably would think about alcohol a lot, after all it plays a big part in family breakdowns and is becoming particularly brutal on the young.

So if someone told you that your vote in the Senate told you you wold give to the distillers a $300M bonus, would you vote to do that? Well, Steve Fielding did.

If you were told you could vote for a $50M campaign against binge drinking then? Apparently not, at least Steve Fielding didn't.

If your vote would mean a tax that has seen a thirty percent decline in the sale of "alcopops", would you vote to keep that happening? Well, now we know if you were Steve Fielding you wouldn't.

In one of the most idiotic pieces of parliamentary voting to attempt to demonstrate you sould be taken seriously, enator Fielding voted against the tax Why? Because he just wanted so much more - he wanted a ban on alcohol advertising in sport (in the daytimeI think - like the kids don't atch at night or something).

Senator Fielding wouldn't pick up a ten dollar note at his feet because if he just kept going he might find a one hundred dollar one instead. Senator Fieldng's idea of negotiation is to ramble in the Senate and propose prices simply too high to secure his vote - especially when the Government gets to look like the good guys.

The Harvard negotiation process taught in the book Getting to Yes should be an essential read for the Senator. Two things. First, negotiate from principle not position. second, know what your best and worst alternatives are to a negotiated outcome.

Good one Steve - you didn't get what you asked for, and we got nothing instead. Someone help this man, please! God sure as heck isn't!

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