Big Bets & Black Swans: a presidential briefing book.

Author:Abrahamson, James

By Brookings Foreign Policy Scholars %20swans/big%20bets%20and%20black%20swans%20a%20presidential%20briefing%2 0book.pdf

The second subtitle of this report from Brookings--Policy Recommendations for President Obama's Second Term by the Foreign Policy Scholars at Brookings--runs to 94 pages of work by 26 scholars. The usual Internet Article Review of three- or four-hundred words could not possibly due justice to its substance. The only alternative is briefly to describe the book's contents in hopes readers will download and study its contents and assess the assessments and recommendations of its distinguished authors.

Accepting that Administration officials are also at work on responses to America's many challenges, Brookings concluded that an "outside perspective would nevertheless prove useful and even "innovative." The documents dozen "Big Bets" represent places where the President should invest his "power, time and prestige" in pursuit of a "transformational impact on America and the world, as well as his legitimacy." In contrast, the eight "Black Swans" are "low probability but high impact events that can" trip up and divert the President, who should make an effort to avoid them."

Martin Indyk and Robert Kagan led off the Big Bets by arguing that the presently unsettled international order provides a "plastic...

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