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Nelsonwins94

Is speed killing debate?

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Step back. Take a second. Take a deep breath and IGNORE EVERYHING ABOVE

 

First get it through your head. I AM NOT SAYING O/D SHOULD BE REJECTED ON FACE. I am NOT debating the merits of an argument. AND MOST IMPORTANTLY I am not trying to justify judges voting down O/D if the other team doesn't respond to it. GET THAT THROUGH YOUR HEAD. PLEASE. I HAVE SAID IT SEVERAL TIMES ALREAY!!!!!!!

 

I am demonstrating why BAD JUDGING IS THE PRIMARY REASON WHY DEBATE ISNT GROWING. Kids will devote countless hours to something which makes sense and is fun. Kids will not pick up policy debate if they say it doesnt make sense to them and they lose on things that dont make any sense. Losing on a default O/D paradigm is no different than losing because you wore a purple shirt.

 

O/D Paradigm IS ONE OF THOSE REASONS why policy debate is less and less attractive to the laystudent.

 

The whole point of me using O/D as one of those reasons is because from a logical perspective (i.e the perspective of a lay person who is trying to break into debate) O/D is nonsensical. I criticized O/D above to demonstrate WHY it is illogical. You concede that its flawed. I also point out that a number of judges on the circuit adhere to O/D as a default paradigm regardless of whether it was advanced in the round by either team. You concede this though contest the prevalence.

 

Thus the whole point you are trying to make is MEANINGLESS. We are not debating a round. We are not talking about a situation in which one team advances O/D and the other drops it. We are not talking about the specifics of any round. We are not talking about about a team arguing O/D and the other team dropping it We are not talking about specific judges, or the situations in which a judge should do this or that.

 

We are talking about why O/D is bad for debate as it pertains to recruiting new students to the activity. And in the process of my critique, I demonstrate why every judge out there who has ever uttered the statement "the ____ doesn't have enough offense"... in the ABSENCE of an O/D paradigm offered by a team in the round is a BAD JUDGE.

 

And bad judging is bad for getting students back into policy.

Get it now?????

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You're shifting your advocacy. Earlier you said that "it doesn't matter if the neg dropped the O/D paradigm". That's what I've been contesting. You say that you have "SAID [a different advocacy] SEVERAL TIMES ALREADY!!!!!!!" but that is wrong. You haven't said that anywhere, but you have rather explicitly said the opposite. I think my points are probably relevant.

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You're shifting your advocacy. Earlier you said that "it doesn't matter if the neg dropped the O/D paradigm". That's what I've been contesting. You say that you have "SAID IT SEVERAL TIMES ALREADY!!!!!!!" but that is wrong. You haven't said that anywhere, but you have explicitly contradicted it. I think my points are probably relevant.

 

Bullshit.

 

Here is the FIRST post I made on the subject.

 

...

9 out of 10 judges sill vote aff on 'risk' of global warming. But I ask debaters to really think about the logic of this statement on risk. If the neg wins any one of those arguments, does the neg not 'disprove' the aff claim? Better still, lets imagine that the aff never responds to any of it other than to espouse the offense-defense paradigm. Even though the aff concedes the arguments, that means that according to the judging policy of drops are concessions, the
neg wins that global warming cannot happen or the aff can't stop it... yet the aff still wins the ballot. Is that even remotely logical
? What does this say about the need for warrants in your arguments when warrants ultimately have nothing to do with winning the ballot? Debate quickly becomes a race to the most number of crazy impacts and the team with more implications, wins. Seems kinda silly when you put it that way, doesn't it?

 

It is this type of intellectually bankrupt thinking which is fundamentally prohibitive to the expansion of policy debate... and ultimately its downfall through insularity. How does one expect an outsider who is considering debate to enjoy the activity or even demonstrate earnest interest in an activity that runs to the contrary of logical thought... especially when the people within the activity espouse their logical superiority
(remember, policy isnt about delivery, thats speech... its about the
argument
... remember uttering those words?)

 

I'm the guy standing here telling you the emperor is naked. These judges who apply the O/D paradigm WITHOUT BEING PROMPTED TO DO SO, OR DONT BUY THE ARGUMENTS AGAINST IT WHEN OFFERED are the ones standing there telling me he's still clothed.

 

Every single judge who has ever uttered "there isnt enough offense...." without being prompted into that O/D paradigm is by definition a BAD BAD JUDGE who is singlehandedly contributing to the downfall of debate.

 

 

You've been treating this like a debate over how judges should view the O/D paradigm - when I didnt even intend for that to be the case from the beginning. My first post on the subject illustrates why I am using O/D as an EXAMPLE of why illogical actions result in disinterest from the laystudent.

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At the point where I'm quoting directly relevant statements, you're the one who is bullshitting. You made a statement and I've attacked it.

 

The fact that you also talked about something else is completely irrelevant. TRY HARDER.

 

I usually like your posts. Just not these ones.

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Look, my point is plain and I really don't care whether you agree with me. And I really dont care at this point if you want to pull a Nathan_debate and just try and brush off the fact that I have been trying to advance a single point that you wont engage me on and its this: things LIKE offense/defense, rewarding speed by counting drops as concessions, etc are all prohibitive to the entry of new students in the activity. And until judges start behaving responsibly, and coaches start educating their debaters on a superior way to go about debating, the activity will continue its decline.

 

And yes, that means debaters of, coaches of, judges of, and camps that teach to the circuit style - I am pointing my fingers at you. Take responsibility for the monster you created, and now in that recognition, take action to resurrect debate.

 

To everyone else: O/D, among many other things, is intellectually vapid. Things that are illogical leads to laypeople being disinterested in the activity and the very reason why circuit debaters falsely attribute lay judges as being erratic and unpredictable. Incorrect, they are very predictable to a debater who presents logical arguments. But how does one expect to fare well when presenting an argument that makes little to no sense to a person who is looking for clarity? Thats the point I have driven in every post on the issue.

 

I am NOT saying that rounds should be about stock issues, or case debate or any one style of argumentation. All styles are good and any judge who limits students on their arguments is a bad judge because I agree, debate should be decided on what is presented by the students, without limits. I have seen circuit style debaters argue a postmodernist critique in front of a panel of lay judges and pick up ALL the ballots because they took time to explain all their arguments rationally to the point where they made Baudrillard sensible to a 3rd grader. Its all about the fact that if you advance a silly system of debate, you will lose in front of a lay. And then when two teams do the same thing, the lay judge is confused by your silly arguments and makes what you consider to be an interventionist decision. (BTW, the biggest 'intervention' in any round is reading evidence after the round in any case except for contested ethics like internal cuts. any judge who does that cannot be called 'anti-interventionist')

 

But in the same vein, its not that speed is inherently bad. But more bad arguments that are incomprehensible is far worse than fewer arguments that are of high quality. The problem is that the circuit often rewards faster teams - not better ones. Teams that argue a few good points are categorically disadvantaged on the circuit because of bankrupt practices of treating drops as concessions, thus rewarding bad teams who speak quickly and drop 20 idiotic answers hoping their opponent drops one that they happened to label a turn (whether it actually is or isnt) and then claiming victory.

 

This is why lay judges are actually quite good at what they do. And quite honestly, if the attitude of your coach is that lay judges are bad for the activity, you probably should begin discounting what they are saying on the subject. Lay judges are very predictable people. I once wrote a primer on how to adapt to lay judges, and sadly it was lost in The Great Purge....

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I am demonstrating why BAD JUDGING IS THE PRIMARY REASON WHY DEBATE ISNT GROWING. Kids will devote countless hours to something which makes sense and is fun. Kids will not pick up policy debate if they say it doesnt make sense to them and they lose on things that dont make any sense.
I've enjoyed this little back and forth, but it raises a question to me. Ankur, do you believe there is a link between speed debate and bad judging?

 

I think you've layed out a pretty complete argument on what can create a bad judge. I would conceded there can be multiple things "killing" policy debate. I would also conceded that there is nothing innate about rapid delivery that would necessitate bad judging. So the link would not be a requirement as much as something that is occuring that doesn't have to occur.

 

For example, speed debate is isolating. Lay people are not able nor interested in following it. Thus you get a community that has trouble not only recuiting (my argument on why it is killing debate) but also a community that becomes incestuous in ideas and lacks diversity. This closed community becomes dogmatic. And that leads to intellectually bankrupt ideas becoming default. Maybe it doesn't HAVE to be this way, but it does happen. I mean, why do you think that something as illogical as the O/D paradigm became the default? Do you think speed contributed even though it didn't have to play out that way?

 

Maybe speed alone isn't killing debate. Maybe speed doesn't necessarily have to kill debate. But in its current state, along with other contributing factors, or as a catalyst to factors such as bad judging, it seems there are good reasons to believe it is a factor in the death of the activity.

 

Just for kicks and giggles, lets apply some O/D paradigm to this debate. There may be some defense to speed debate. Perhaps there are alt causes to the death of debate and perhaps speed debate doesn't 100% link to a reduction in participating population, but without offensive reasons that speed debate is good for policy debate, you vote against it. Unless there is evidence that speed debate increases participation, we would say it is killing debate. Note: saying speed debate is educational or fun for those who participate is non-responsive unless you can also show that non-participants would also view it as educational and fun. I think I've even given warranted reasons why lay people would not find speed debate educational or fun. Without offense, I win, right?

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I've enjoyed this little back and forth, but it raises a question to me.  Ankur, do you believe there is a link between speed debate and bad judging?

 

I think you've layed out a pretty complete argument on what can create a bad judge.  I would conceded there can be multiple things "killing" policy debate.  I would also conceded that there is nothing innate about rapid delivery that would necessitate bad judging.  So the link would not be a requirement as much as something that is occuring that doesn't have to occur.

 

For example, speed debate is isolating.  Lay people are not able nor interested in following it.  Thus you get a community that has trouble not only recuiting (my argument on why it is killing debate) but also a community that becomes incestuous in ideas and lacks diversity.  This closed community becomes dogmatic.  And that leads to intellectually bankrupt ideas becoming default.  Maybe it doesn't HAVE to be this way, but it does happen.  I mean, why do you think that something as illogical as the O/D paradigm became the default?  Do you think speed contributed even though it didn't have to play out that way?

 

Maybe speed alone isn't killing debate.  Maybe speed doesn't necessarily have to kill debate.  But in its current state, along with other contributing factors, or as a catalyst to factors such as bad judging, it seems there are good reasons to believe it is a factor in the death of the activity.

 

Just for kicks and giggles, lets apply some O/D paradigm to this debate.  There may be some defense to speed debate.  Perhaps there are alt causes to the death of debate and perhaps speed debate doesn't 100% link to a reduction in participating population, but without offensive reasons that speed debate is good for policy debate, you vote against it.  Unless there is evidence that speed debate increases participation, we would say it is killing debate.  Note:  saying speed debate is educational or fun for those who participate is non-responsive unless you can also show that non-participants would also view it as educational and fun.  I think I've even given warranted reasons why lay people would not find speed debate educational or fun.  Without offense, I win, right?

 

Senor Volen,I chuckled heartily at your S's & G's O/D paradigm. And yes, under the O/D paradigm, you would win automatically with that argument. Thank you for driving that point home. Its pretty funny how that works out... I agree that speed can be isolating, but really I still fault bad judging philosophies. My issue with speed is that because judges reward a drop as a concession, then it provides an incentive to drop as many answers as possible with no regard to quality. If the other team drops the answer, then you can try and magnify it with some hocus pocus analytics later in the hopes of scoring a quick, cheap win. So teams that make fewer, but well developed, highly nuanced, and logical arguments are penalized because though they did the better debating, they lose because they didn't answer the aff's 19th non-unique answer to their disad. To me, this is rather silly. So even teams that are capable of producing better arguments end up producing silly ones because they feel as though they need to 'play the game' the way that judges lay things out for them. The alternative to speed is simply judges demanding more logical arguments with rational analytics. My best example is "T is a voter for fairness and jurisdiction" What does that mean? Where are the warrants behind that? What happened to the days when teams could still go fast, but in dropping a ten point T shell (including def, interp, standards, and voters) would take a minute to read because the argument was so well developed.People (incorrectly) think that deeper debate is more answers vertically on the flow. I say deeper debate is better arguments (especially analytics), across the flow.

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Someone may or may not have said this before: but a main argument for "speed bad" seems to that non-debaters (particularly school officials) think its bad and can't understand it, and that this would lead to debate receiving less support.

 

At my school this was NOT the case, our principle and other admins actually came in especially to see me and the other fastest person on my team spread. They thought it was impressive and cool (and yes, a little weird). Overall people outside the squad at my school find spreading to be entertaining and a kind of novelty.

 

That being said, my mom has banned me from spreading in the house because "it scares" her.

 

I think the whole speed good or bad debate will ultimately get resolved in round (how things usually do). If a team has a lot of success going slower, running a speed K, or some other kritik/theory argument than fewer people will spread. The quickest way for people to change strats is if they see someone winning consistently using that strat.

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I think the whole speed good or bad debate will ultimately get resolved in round (how things usually do). If a team has a lot of success going slower, running a speed K, or some other kritik/theory argument than fewer people will spread. The quickest way for people to change strats is if they see someone winning consistently using that strat.

 

 

It would be nice if a speed K would actually work on most judges, but it doesnt. Why? Because most judges are a) biased towards speed good and B) incensed when anyone thinks otherwise and c) are more than happy to vote on the slower team dropping many of the answers the fast team puts out on the speed K (even though such a ballot reifies everything the speed K was saying).

So certain things dont get solved in round.

 

Teams have a hard time winning going slower unless their analytics are VASTLY superior to everyone else, and thats because debate has devolved into trying to find ways to make the other team drop arguments, then extend them and claim they win rounds.

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a) biased towards speed good and B) incensed when anyone thinks otherwise and c) are more than happy to vote on the slower team dropping many of the answers the fast team puts out on the speed K (even though such a ballot reifies everything the speed K was saying).

 

lol @ subpoint B getting turned into a smiley face.

 

That's all I have to offer this conversation. Please continue, gentlemen.

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So teams that make fewer, but well developed, highly nuanced, and logical arguments are penalized because though they did the better debating, they lose because they didn't answer the aff's 19th non-unique answer to their disad.

 

i think at that point, the aff would probably botch at least two other flows after reading a 19 point non-U frontline...

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Ankur, while I understand your dislike of technical debate, I'm confused as to how the alternative would be any better. If a dropped argument wasn't accepted as true, that would create horrible debates. If a team argues that Global Warming is real and another team has no response then the judge should accept Global Warming as true, regardless of their personal beliefs. Given that, how do we avoid blatantly interventionist judging while also avoiding an overly technical focus on dropped arguments?

 

I currently don't think we can negotiate a coherent set of rules for avoiding either outcome. I err on the side of technical debate because I feel that most technical debates aren't settled on drops but are settled on argumentative content. I don't feel that the same is the case with interventionist judging, I think that interventionist judging makes argumentative content almost irrelevant. If there's a compromise position available though, I would almost certainly prefer it.

 

As a side note, I think judges mostly appeal to heuristics like the offense defense paradigm to justify their beliefs to debaters. I don't think that RFDs which mention the offense defense paradigm are based off the offense defense paradigm so much as they are a desire to vote for a team that clearly won the round, but without having to offer a substantive justification. I think judges are scared of debaters so they develop these type of concepts to protect themselves from criticism. It's just a theory though.

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Ankur, while I understand your dislike of technical debate, I'm confused as to how the alternative would be any better. If a dropped argument wasn't accepted as true, that would create horrible debates. If a team argues that Global Warming is real and another team has no response then the judge should accept Global Warming as true, regardless of their personal beliefs. Given that, how do we avoid blatantly interventionist judging while also avoiding an overly technical focus on dropped arguments?

 

I currently don't think we can negotiate a coherent set of rules for avoiding either outcome. I err on the side of technical debate because I feel that most technical debates aren't settled on drops but are settled on argumentative content. I don't feel that the same is the case with interventionist judging, I think that interventionist judging makes argumentative content almost irrelevant. If there's a compromise position available though, I would almost certainly prefer it.

All judges are interventionist because there is no objective brightline for what constitutes an argument.

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All judges are interventionist because there is no objective brightline for what constitutes an argument.

 

lol

 

novices are lulz

 

 

intervention can be minimized n00b

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...intervention can be minimized...

Right, some intervention is inevitable, so we're just haggling over the degrees.

 

Some polution is inevitable. Solar and wind power can reduce pollution. But they cost so much that we don't convert 100% to them.

 

Intervention is inevitalbe. Being overly technical about the debate (including accepting dropped arguments = concession) can reduce intervention. But the cost of overly technical debate (leads to bad judging based on illogical base, leads to corrupt practices of speed debate, and destroys the development of persuasive skills) is enough that the small reduction of intervention does not outweigh the costs.

 

We can agree that invervention should be reduced. At a certain point, the deminishing returns for the increase costs means that we may not prefer the strategy that creates the least amount of intervention, but instead an acceptable amount of low intervention without the costs involved.

 

Just a idea of how to view the impact of intervention in policy debate. Different people would have different thresholds for where that balance occurs.

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I agree that intervention and technicality are poles which we should negotiate between. I disagree with your framing of the issue.

 

Specifically, you pose the tradeoff as though there is only a small decrease in intervention but a very large increase in persuasive skills. You don't warrant that framing.

 

Overly technical debate at least retains the control of the debaters over the round. The same is not true with intervention.

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I agree that intervention and technicality are poles which we should negotiate between. I disagree with your framing of the issue.

 

Specifically, you pose the tradeoff as though there is only a small decrease in intervention but a very large increase in persuasive skills. You don't warrant that framing.

 

Overly technical debate at least retains the control of the debaters over the round. The same is not true with intervention.

Very true. I don't warrant my perception of the relative decrease in intervention versus the relative increase in other skill development. As is in economics, we can talk about the concept of the supply line intersecting the demand line, but it is far more difficult to track the slope. starting point, and intersection of the lines.

 

I get that competitively, debaters having control is good and thus intervention is bad. How we balance them is an art. The reason for my framing is not to make an argument for an absolute, but to see it all as relative. Where we end up on the scale will be relative to our tolarances. Some people will have very little tolarance for intervention because the feeling of fairness and control are more desirable. Other people will have different tolarances that lead them to prefer a different style of debate. Thus, extremes are bad. Exclusion of different tolarances is bad. Lack of flexibility is bad.

 

I do believe that speed debate tends to be extreme. I do believe that the goal of 100% technical debate is extreme. I don't know where the balance is, but I can make a case that it is in the middle and not an extreme.

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