Brinksmanship as outlined in Naomi Klein's seminal "The Shock Doctrine" is the driving force behind a false narrative that's taken over our politics and democracy in Washington D.C.
Here's a fantastic post at HuffPo written by Dave Johnson if you'd like to see it dissected in the "Fiscal Cliff" meme of this past New Year.
The conundrum for the left or what remains of it as most everything to the left of right seems to have post-mordial existence in a kind of soup of the "art of the possible" otherwise known as pragmatic, incremental politics, is how to defuse the constant ticking of the improvised device called Brinksmanship.
What's apparent if patterns are to be useful predictors is that both major parties in Washington are either beholden to the IED in real fear or colluding on some level with the narrative of Cliffs, Doom, and Economic Devastation. And it matters not whether the projected outcome of not having Grand Bargains or Can Kicking CR is real or not. The effectiveness of it is readily apparent as the overwhelming driving force of policy in D.C. and in the Markets which our Congress and Government serve at the convenience of.
This has been a four year process ever since Hank Paulson delivered his ransom note back in late 2008.Even before hand Treasury and the Federal Reserve were operating out of a Weekend/Monday Morning playbook in unprecedented interventions into the markets of Wall Street investment banking.
Now it is close to being...an institution unto itself. A ritual in every sense. Whether or not Barack Obama is a poor negotiator or a clever strategic-in-chief is not so much the question as much as his legacy in being a manager. Since this seemly is his strong suit as Chief Executive of U.S.A. LLC it would fair to point out that managing by crisis is not exactly considered good stewardship. And pointing blame at his opponents is not exactly a can-do kind of excuse. CEO's are supposedly trained in the art of staring down adversity and out maneuvering competitors/partners by sheer...leadership.
There's the antidote right there to Brinksmanship: Leadership.
There's no magic in this as historical figures prove with any passing knowledge of what it takes to put it on the line, knowing the importance of timing and ultimately informed courage to take on your opponents. The cycle has to be broken on terms with which the left and or the Democratic Party can survive and not by allowing the narrative to shatter the platform of the ideals by which the left and the Democrats claim to represent. Through the procrastination of the current administration, the procrastination to lead, we are running up against the real risk that the next round of Brinksmanship will mute for the American public any tangible evidence that the current citadel of the left in the Democratic Party is much different than the Republican agenda in a real long term sense.