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Supreme Court Fiat

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Ankur... can you clarify/explain? Are you saying that unconstitutional plantexts will be overturned, or are you talking about cases that overturn previous decisions on grounds of constitutionality?

 

say for example my plan is to eliminate the executive branch of government. this is clearly unconstitutional as a normal government process. thus, in a non-fiat world, the plan simply wont exist. it may exist briefly until it is brought up to challenge in the courts. but for debate purposes, instantaneously, the courts would overturn it, thus proving that the plan to eliminate the executive branch is not permanent.

 

the problem is that the purpose of fiat is to model a world in which plan exists so you may make meaningful projections about the implications of a specific action (i.e. the plan). if the plan doesnt exist because it gets overturned on constitutional grounds, then the meaning of fiat and thus the meaning of debate gets lost.

 

so constitutionality and fiat are at odds. if you accept constitutionality as the primary concern, then debate ceases to be meaningful. since debate is a game, then the only logical outcome is the opposite - that fiat trumps constitutionality.

 

conclusion - a constitutionality disad (or critique) actually crushes the affirmative right to a fiat world and thus crushes all debate as the reciprocal must also apply. in fact, a disad or critique of the unconstitutionality of plan actually crushes the implications of the negative's own argument, thus destroying ALL debate.

 

but this, however, is somewhat different from an affirmative plan calling upon a test case etc. although not really a far cry from this.

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The idea of fiat is supposed to be instantaneous, your plan is worded in a way that makes the timeframe problematic. I don't know if the test case comes in a week or 5 years. That means you can answer back my politx scenarios with a "oh, well, that scenario will be past before our case is decided."

 

It is irrelevant how the case gets to the Supreme Court. For the purposes of comparison, the judge is asked to imagine a world in which the Supreme Court rules a particular way. If the way that such an opportunity arises is through a test case, then that is the normal means by which court fiat operates. In other words, the (debate) judge is asked to imagine a world in which such a case exists and is argued before and decided by the Supreme Court.

 

That such a test case does not exist in the status quo is, again, irrelevant. We do not insist that Congressional plans already exist on the docket or in committee (or claim abuse because of a delay in writing/proposing legislation that "hoses" the timeframe and uniqueness debate). Nor do we claim actor fiat abuse in a Congressional plan because (presumably) someone would have to write the draft legislation and propose it (by no means an instantaneous process from draft through committee, incidentally).

 

The point of policy debate is not the fiat mechanism but the ramifications of the enactment of plan if it were to exist in the status quo. Most of the mental gymnastics on this thread confuse the should/would distinction that is critical to making affirmation possible in the first place.

 

Start your plan text, "By all normal means the Supreme Court will..." and you eliminate the need for this debate.

 

Matt

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1) topicality is still legit. there is only one reason to vote for topicality - when the rhetoric and syntax of the affirmative policy (or negative counterplan) do not match. failure to match (i.e. be topical in rhetoric and non-topical in syntax) leaves the opposing team no argument to be made. silence is the only option, thus defeating the purpose of the game of debate.

 

2) absolutely you can run release prisons (policy) and then run securitization solvency. thats 100% legitimate and in accordance with the rules of debate. i should have clarified however, and this is my fault. you can also fiat actions. i can fiat that the judge tears up the ballot in rejection of racist debate. this doesnt mean that the judge actually tears the ballot. it means i am able to examine a world in which the judge tears it up.

 

3) i agree specification of time is extratopical, no more or less extratopical than a funding plank or one in which you specify your specific agent. but your argument was that these specifications crush your disad ground. they dont do anything of the sort. if they do its because you are running really bad disadvantages which shouldnt exist in the first place. you would actually be running a disadvantage which demands the judge to ignore ALL the rules of debate.

dude. debate is a game. there is nothing political about it. if saying FGM good wins you a round, say it. no one will look at you funny in the game because your statements are inherently encapsulated by the round which supercedes all other concerns. your words do not have an effect after the round, except to have a good laugh and discuss the strategy.

 

1) Ok i conceed I think that you are winning this point but your point is still a little confuisng to me I mean what the hell the rhetoric and syntax of the affirmative policy. I have been doing some thinking and I do think you are right that sue sponte is legit but I still think test cases are abusive. I do think that you are right in your first post that they should just be able to do that.

 

2) I also conceed this point that you can fiat actions. However I still belive that you should be held to the bounds of the resolution on fiat. I do think that they should be able to say that kerpen is going to bring up a test case about korematsu. I think you can only go fiat that the supreme court can do a certain thing to pass your plan though.

 

3) I win time is extatopical that is why test cases are bad. You might win that the disad ground I get is bad I still get more ground per my style of debating. So if saying getting this type of ground wins me that debate no one should look at me funny. I still say that a test case is bad for this exact reason.

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It is irrelevant how the case gets to the Supreme Court. For the purposes of comparison, the judge is asked to imagine a world in which the Supreme Court rules a particular way. If the way that such an opportunity arises is through a test case, then that is the normal means by which court fiat operates. In other words, the (debate) judge is asked to imagine a world in which such a case exists and is argued before and decided by the Supreme Court.

 

 

First off, you are talking about a different plan text than the one I was referring to. The plan text I was referring to reads: "upon the next appropriate test case..." That's where my timeframe debate comes from. The aff, in an attempt to spike out of the fact that fiating an outside actor would be necessary to have the court rule and not link to sua sponte, is writing plan in a way where the timeframe is completely indeterminate. Unless there is evidence that a specific case is out there, heading for the court that you want a ruling on, there is no way for anyone in the room to know when that test case arises. You might as well run a timeframe counterplan and politix and then argue that counterplan occurs after the yet to be scheduled such and such, that avoids the politix scenario.

 

 

That such a test case does not exist in the status quo is, again, irrelevant. We do not insist that Congressional plans already exist on the docket or in committee (or claim abuse because of a delay in writing/proposing legislation that "hoses" the timeframe and uniqueness debate). Nor do we claim actor fiat abuse in a Congressional plan because (presumably) someone would have to write the draft legislation and propose it (by no means an instantaneous process from draft through committee, incidentally).

 

This is where your argument misses the uniqueness of the Supreme Court. I don't have to worry about a what exists in committee argument re: Congress because Congress is an active body. It can generate, and pass laws without interaction from a non-government entity. Thus we can, for the purposes of debate assume that the Congressional leg work has been done and as of this moment plan is in effect.

 

The Supreme Court, on the other hand, has to wait for constitutional challenges from outside the government in order to make a decision. Granted, at that time, the decision becomes law, but it can't generate it's own cases. That means you're either screwing with the timeframe of debate (and I'd argue that future fiat is even more abusive than a counterfactual) which hoses uniqueness as I said above, or you're fiating an actor who isn't within the Federal Government in order to prove the resolution true. That's both illegitimate fiat and xtra T.

 

The point of policy debate is not the fiat mechanism but the ramifications of the enactment of plan if it were to exist in the status quo. Most of the mental gymnastics on this thread confuse the should/would distinction that is critical to making affirmation possible in the first place.

 

Start your plan text, "By all normal means the Supreme Court will..." and you eliminate the need for this debate.

 

I answered the normal means comment above, and quite a bit of the fiat question above. The last thing I'm going to say is that generally I agree with you on the should/would argument, however "should" doesn't mean we can do completely unrealistic (ie, impossible because of the constructs of the world we live in) things as our hypotheticals. Additionally, you ONLY get to fiat the USFG, nothing more. Call it normal means, or a test case, either way you rely on the action of an actor external to the government in order to get your plan passed. The only question is whether you try to squirm out of the debate by putting a more abusive uniqueness/timeframe issue on it.

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First off, you are talking about a different plan text than the one I was referring to.

 

I was responding generally. Yours happened to be the last post in the thread, so I quoted it as a launching point for my argument. I agree fiat must be instantaneous (as if the policy were fully implemented) in order for there to be a valid comparison with the status quo.

 

generally I agree with you on the should/would argument, however "should" doesn't mean we can do completely unrealistic (ie, impossible because of the constructs of the world we live in) things as our hypotheticals.

 

A plan imagines a hypothetical world, and the function of debate is to compare it to the world in which we actually live. If this hypothetical world is more desirable than the status quo, then the aff wins. However, the aff is restricted to to ideas which, for whatever reason/s, are not possible in our world. If they are possible, then the aff is, in fact, making an argument for inaction as the harms are not inherent in the status quo. In such a case, the neg should get the ballot.

 

What you are attempting to do is construct a hierarchy of impossibilities. No aff is possible in the staus quo. Some may be closer to our world, but the likelihood of passage (by whatever actor) is identical: zero, if circumstances remain as they are.

 

Your idea that we can only consider plausible impossibilities is not only an oxymoron, but it is completely arbitrary. "Unrealistic" to whom? By what standards would you judge this?

 

Additionally, you ONLY get to fiat the USFG, nothing more. Call it normal means, or a test case, either way you rely on the action of an actor external to the government in order to get your plan passed. The only question is whether you try to squirm out of the debate by putting a more abusive uniqueness/timeframe issue on it.

 

I have three arguments.

 

First, the phrase "USFG" in the resolution is usually defined as the three branches of government. If something else had been intended, i.e. Congress or the Executive alone, then the language of the resolution would have been different.

 

Second, in your zeal to find extra-topical narratives embedded in the normal means of the court, you ignore a few possibilities. Would it be ok, for instance, to use the Supreme Court as an actor if a member of one branch sued a member of another branch (e.g., Goldwater et al. v. Carter)? What if the plaintiff were merely a USFG employee?

 

You claim the legislative branch avoids such extra-topical quandaries because it generates its own action, but is this how things truly operate in the real world? What role, to give an obvious example, do lobbyists and/or activists play in shaping (or even drafting) legislation? To be more specific, most of the "environmental" legislation proposed by the present administration was apparently drafted in large part by industry lobbyists and corporate special interest groups.

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[For whatever reason, I couldn't get the entirity of my message in one post. Continues from above...]

 

Third, the normal means by which a congressional bill becomes law involve a variety of steps that are irrelevant (for topicality purposes) to the final outcome (pass or fail). Similarly, the normal means by which the Supreme Court decides a case also involve a variety of steps irrelevant to the final outcome. It is always possible to tease out a hypothetical, extra-topical scenario by which a plan could have become law, but this type of thinking collapses in on itself if you recognize that all plans are impossible in the status quo, so what could have happened to reach point X (the point of decision making) is irrelevant if the proper point of departure is point X itself -- what should happen now.

 

The phrasing of the resolution allows for the possibility of a court actor. Fiat is just the means by which we compare the aff's hypothetical world to our own, determining via ballot which world is, on balance, more advantageous. A broad interpretation of "normal means" as "whatever steps necessary for it to reach the decision making point," in my view, best facilitates this comparison. Questions of topicality, then, would also start from the point of the actor's decision making, not the infinite "could have beens" that may have proceeded that point (rendered nonsensical anyway since, by definition, the affplan cannot exist in the first place).

 

Matt

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I have no problem with the affirmative fiating that the Supreme Court will hear a test case. Hell, I don't even have a problem with them saying the Supreme Court will rule a certain way in terms of the case. I do have a problem with the fact that test cases are NORMALLY brought about by individuals for review. Individuals =/= USFG and you can't fiat that someone will bring a test case up in the first place. If the affirmative can prove that their is a case in the system, more power to them and I stop having problems.

 

Although it is infinitely more weak, I would also run future fiat bad, because the fiat the affirmative is claiming isn't even utilized immediately, it takes place some indiscriminate time in the future. As a result, all of our disads become non-unique, abusive because we can't get evidence from the future, blah-blah-blah....yeah, we've run both, in conjunction, and have been very successful. If nothing else, it serves to skew the time the affirmative could spend on other arguments.

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You could also run theory and go with predictable limits. Say something like: aff can overturn any case -- destroys limits -- bad for debate, fairness and education.

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You could also run theory and go with predictable limits. Say something like: aff can overturn any case -- destroys limits -- bad for debate, fairness and education.

This post is old enough to be a teenager, and this is what you bump with

  • Upvote 2

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This post is old enough to be a teenager, and this is what you bump with

Snarf isn't your account almost old enough to be a teenager at this point :P.

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Snarf isn't your account almost old enough to be a teenager at this point :P.

...yes. It'd be 11. 

 

The best part is that I originally joined in order to post Public Forum Debate blog posts I'd written for a brief company, and the name of my account was "PF_Blogger."

 

Really.

 

Then, Matt (the old supermod) changed it to "Wise, Talking Trash Heap" in an old shitposting thread where people would ask him to change their account name to something fun. In a second thread of the kind, I became Snarf (and have so stayed ever since).

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