Government

When Congress Plays Chicken

The dome of the U.S. Capitol is pictured in Washington, D.C., on April 6.
Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

In a classic game of chicken, two cars race toward each other. The loser is the person who swerves out of the way of the oncoming car.

As it turns out, chicken is something that game theorists have devoted a lot of thought to

Chicken is also a pretty good metaphor for the way Congress handled the debt-ceiling debate.

On today's show, we talk to Steven S. Smith, a political scientist at Wash U. who studies Congress for a living. He takes us deep inside the debt-ceiling-as-game-of-chicken metaphor. And he explains why the supercommittee may actually work out a deal.

Subscribe to the podcast. Music: The Black Keys's "Everlasting Light." Find us: Twitter/ Facebook.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.