Quotations about   negotiation

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Of course, somehow, these champions of free market, these lovers of the invisible hand, cannot figure out that if people won’t sell you a good or service under the terms you set, free market competition demands that you offer better terms and conditions. It’s as simple as that. If you can’t buy a Porsche for $1.98, that doesn’t mean there’s an automobile shortage.

Peter Greene (contemp.) American teacher, blogger
“Florida’s Teacher Gap Is No Mystery,” Huffington Post (21 Nov 2017)
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Added on 3-Jun-21 | Last updated 3-Jun-21
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The hard line, which has always been arguable in theory and which has had some success in practice, views the imperatives of the cold war as an ineluctable challenge, has encouraged a skeptical view of the limits of negotiation, and has placed its primary trust in ample reserves of strength.
The pseudo-conservative line is distinguishable from this not alone in being more crusade-minded and more risk-oriented in its proposed policies but also in its conviction that those who place greater stress on negotiation and accommodation are either engaged in treasonable conspiracy (the Birch Society’s view) or are guilty of well-nigh criminal failings in moral and intellectual fiber (Goldwater’s).

Richard Hofstadter (1916-1970) American historian and intellectual
“Goldwater and Pseudo-Conservative Politics,” sec. 4 (1965)
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Added on 20-Jan-21 | Last updated 20-Jan-21
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If you aren’t at the table, you’re on the menu.

Ann Richards (1933-2006) American politician [Dorothy Ann Willis Richards]
(Attributed)

Richards regularly used the phrase, but it's unclear if she originated it. See here for more discussion.
Added on 5-Nov-20 | Last updated 15-Nov-20
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If you want to make peace, you don’t talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies.

Moshe Dayan (1915-1981) Israeli military leader and politician
In Newsweek (17 Oct 1977)
Added on 7-Nov-17 | Last updated 7-Nov-17
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Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser — in fees, and expenses, and waste of time. As a peacemaker the lawyer has a superior opertunity [sic] of being a good man. There will still be business enough.

Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) American lawyer, politician, US President (1861-65)
“Notes on the Practice of Law” (1850?)
Added on 15-Oct-15 | Last updated 15-Oct-15
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It would be some time before I fully realized that the United States sees little need for diplomacy; power is enough. Only the weak rely on diplomacy. This is why the weak are so deeply concerned with the democratic principle of the sovereign equality of states, as a means of providing some small measure of equality for that which is not equal in fact. Coming from a developing country, I was trained extensively in international law and diplomacy and mistakenly assumed that the great powers, especially the United States, also trained their representatives in diplomacy and accepted the value of it. But the Roman Empire had no need for diplomacy. Nor does the United States. Diplomacy is perceived by an imperial power as a waste of time and prestige and a sign of weakness.

Boutros Boutros-Ghali (b. 1922) Egyptian politician, diplomat, UN Secretary-General (1992-1996)
Unvanquished: A U.S.-U.N. Saga (1999)
Added on 18-Mar-15 | Last updated 18-Mar-15
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Someone sends me a clipping from Columnist Lyons with this honey: “They are telling this of Lord Beaverbrook and a visiting Yankee actress. In a game of hypothetical questions, Beaverbrook asked the lady: ‘Would you live with a stranger if he paid you one million pounds?’ She said she would. ‘And if be paid you five pounds?’ The irate lady fumed: ‘Five pounds. What do you think I am?’ Beaverbrook replied: ‘We’ve already established that. Now we are trying to determine the degree.'”

Max Aitken, Lord Beaverbrook (1879-1964) Anglo-Canadian business tycoon, publisher, politician, writer
“As O. O. McIntyre Sees It,” syndicated column (2 Jan 1937)

This anecdote has been attributed to a number of people, including Winston Churchill and George Bernard Shaw, usually in a bawdier form, e.g.:
SHAW: [To a woman seated by him at a dinner party.] Madam, if I gave you a million pounds, would you sleep with me?
WOMAN: I think I would.
SHAW: Would you do it for five?
WOMAN: Sir, what kind of woman do you think I am?
SHAW: I thought we had established that, and were merely haggling over the price.

The above, attributing the exchange to Lord Beaverbrook, is the earliest version found. See here and here for more discussion and research into its origins.
Added on 15-Mar-13 | Last updated 31-Mar-20
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So let us begin anew — remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.

John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) US President (1961-63)
Inaugural Address (20 Jan 1961)
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Added on 12-Sep-07 | Last updated 27-May-16
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Appeasement does not always lead to war; sometimes it leads to surrender.

William Safire (1929-2009) American author, columnist, journalist, speechwriter
“Giving War a Chance,” New York Times (2 Nov 1989)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 31-Mar-21
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