The status of NFL labor negotiations

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The NFL labor dispute adds further proof to the idea that powerful, intelligent people are not there by some decree from above. Those people are not there because they are of greater intelligence, or have super problem-solving ability. They are there, among other reasons, because the serotonin in their brains and non-verbal feedback from others tell them they should be there, causing just enough people to believe them.

What they are doing now is the classic “we aren’t very good negotiators, so let’s let the courts tell us what to do.” For a good take on this by Frank Deford of SI.com, click here. The players’ union (or more accurately, ex-union) is, not suprisingly, leading their clients astray. A court battle will only lead to long delays, with the Plaxico Burress’s, Dez’ Bryant’s, and others continue to rack up bling, thus weakening their positions. Appeal after appeal will be filed, and the players will eventually cave. However, in the meantime DeMaurice Smith will rise in profile and Jeffrey Kessler will have racked up thousands or possibly millions in fees.

Contracts and agreements are there for parties to develop greater understanding. Try pointing out the cost of the litigation route and transaction costs that produce inefficiency many times the visible costs, and many buyers and many salespeople will view you as naive. The reality is that buyers are paying for this inefficiency through hidden costs (but at least they aren’t losing face with the guy in the cubicle next door). The illusion of control is alive and well, and if I weren’t a fan of the NFL, it would all be quite amusing.

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One Response to “The status of NFL labor negotiations”

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