In my post “Why Conservatives think they are loosing” I talked mostly about how the Right want’s to either keep things the same, or take things back to an idealized past. In this post I’m going to address the other reason the Right feels they are loosing, the ‘No Comprimise’ delima.
To start off, let me be very clear that I do acknowledge that there are some things that you can not comprimise on, but these are few and far between. To take a such a position you have to accept that you are now in a binary logic universe. (To those who know me, you can get all the giggles done now. I do like to use bifurcation when solving problems so it often appears that I am taking a.binary view of things. Those that really know me well know I just use bifuracation as a reasoning tool to analyze the problem.). The issue here is why does the Right take this position on comprimise. Those things that are truely binary, they are easy to identify because only two states can exists, you are either alive or dead. The proble arises when you have to deal with some one who is in a permanent vegetative state.
For some the “No Comprimise” position is taken for philosophical reasons and/or religious reasons. You often hear the statement “You can’t comprimise with the Devil” or it’s derivation “You can’t comprimise with Evil”. Others do it because they see everything as a win loose situation, like a tennis game where the game goes on till someone wins and someone looses. That is why I’m going to be talking about Zero-Sum games. Fortunately not all human activity is a zero sum game, most are non zero sum. For those of you who are interested here is a link to read more about Game Theory.
The first, and most obvious, problem with “No Comprimise” is that it force you into the position of having to get everything you ask for, otherwise you have lost. As an example say you want to build a building at a specific corner in your town. You want it to be so many stories high and have x number of elevators. Now lets say the zoning laws of your town say that all building of a give height must have x+1 elevators, or worse still that the corner you want to build on is owned by someone who will not sell, but the lot across the street is available. In both cases, the “no compromise” position says you have lost if you accept either restrictions. This is a silly case, of course, but it does demonstarte the issue.
In politics you will often have issues that have many sub-issues. The Gun (2nd amendment) debate in this country is a classic example of this problem. The most simplistic view of the problem decides everything into anyone can have any weapon (arms) they want and take it any where they want or no civilian can have way weapon (arms) at anytime anywhere. The answer to the problem lies somewhere in between these two polls. The real issue is that there are persons on both sides of the issue who feel that they can not compromise. The problem for the Right is that, even though they have won as much as can be done in the courts (2nd is now a personal right and all law effecting it must pass the Strict Scuriny Test. But some how they feel they have not yet won the fight. Why? Because not only do the want their position to be accepted in law, they want everyone else to acknowledge the rightness of their position. An here Lise one of the great traps with zero-sum, asking for something that can not be granted, that the other side has to not only acknowledge your win they must also admit they are wrong.
In sports this is often called grand standing and it can have very dillatorious effects (such as ‘clearing the bench’) and is so frowned upon by the referees.
Inclosing, the problem with “No Comprimise” is that it almost always leads to feeling that you’ve lost, even when you get everything you could reasonablely ask for.