Master negotiators rely on a weakness of human psyche called anchoring.
In a nutshell, we often rely too much on initial information when making subsequent decisions.
It happens when we’re shopping, arguing with our kids, and scheduling our day. The best example is a high end jewelry shop where pieces are marked up to extravagant prices. When they put the pieces on sale, it’s hard not to assume you’re getting a deal even if they are actually worth a lot less.
Great negotiators will always lead with an outlandish first offer, knowing that you will adjust your response based partly upon that offer. You were going to ask for a $5,000 raise at your evaluation and your boss offers you $1,500. Do you still ask for $5,000 or do you come back with $3,000?
What’s the best way to get increased national security when you’re working against a liberal majority who don’t want to give an inch on the issue?
Put out a big, scary Executive Order up front and get everyone in a state of panic. Then gradually scroll it back *to your original policy goals* and watch them grudgingly (some happily) accept it.