COP-19 Warsaw: Arguing Over Who Leaves House Fire First
On reading The US and China Play Chicken Over Climate Change in The Diplomat, I could not help to think of the following analogy:
Mr. Sam and Mr. Wong are two competing businessmen trapped in a house fire along with all of their widgets. Keeping the price of their widgets low is the key to their economic success. It is vital that they, along with their widgets, get out of this fire as soon as possible. This should be obvious to all.
So why are they not rushing out of this house fire? Well, there is a catch. The only exit available requires a fee. The first person to exit pays a little more than the second person to exit.
Sam and Wong continue to argue about who exits first because each wishes to pay the lower second exit fee.