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New article against project debate

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Why do K-affs necessarily sacrifice logic? Swearing-based ethos (which is the only thing this author seems to consistently criticize) does not necessarily come at the expense of logic, and in terms of teams that win, it never does. She never draws a link between the "rules" of debate and loss of logic (which is the only impact she isolates). The entire article is based off this linkless assumption. 

 

The closest she comes to an argument here is the claim that K teams discredit opinions due to privilege, and although privilege plays a part in arguments (as it should), arguments are usually way more nuanced than "you're wrong because you're white."

 

Of course I have no idea how the NPDA works, so I can't claim to know more than the author of the article in this section. But overall this seems to feed into her incorrect assumption that debate has "rules" against the aff being non-resolutional, which don't exist as interpretations of the resolution always have been up to the debaters, since ever. This means her argument about people throwing daisies in basketball make 0 sense, as the K-aff strategy is more akin to an unconventional strategy, like a spread offense in football. 

 

Ironically, this article lacks the very thing it incorrectly criticizes debate for lacking: logic.

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How is this responsive at all , to be honest with you y'all im  biased  with this . This article could be  seen whiney at first . As well to this it is more likely from an outsider /layer noramlized person

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I just love it whenever people from outside the debate community try to question and critique the debate community and our actions.

Edited by CodyGustafson
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So, I talked to Joe Gant (The Head Coach/DOF of Lewis and Clark) and he told me that the person who wrote this article won the NPDA national tournament in the early 90's and is doing this as some form of revenge against the K being popular within debate. 

 

He also believes (as do I) that we need to basically not talk about this so that it doesn't get as popular and cause backlash from outside of the debate community. 

Edited by RainSilves
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I just love it whenever people from outside the debate community try to question and critique the debate community and our actions.

I do too.  Trying to justify debate being good when all of our PR is shitty is so much fun!

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You know, the correct response to bad PR is to make an effort to have good PR, not just ignore it entirely.  Maybe we should spend more time engaging the rest of the world instead of isolating ourselves in a bubble?

 

on a totally different note, i found the example NPTE round resolution to be terrible.  While T is a thing in NPDA (although, back when I did it in the early 00's, it wasn't argued well much of the time, which let people who did know how to argue it run over teams), resolutions didn't tend to be that hyper-specific.  I did debate 'This house would let the wookie win' and other pithy resolutions which almost demanded, or at least invited, metaphorical interpretation. (Not that there wasn't a number of terrible resolutions.  I remember losing a QF round as negative against a resolution that was pretty much "Resolved: Greenspan is right"... in early 2001 when everyone worshipped at the altar of Greenspan, and the other team's only argument was pretty much 'he's Greenspan'.)

 

But there is a difference between doing the work to metaphorically interpret a resolution and just saying f*ck the resolution.  (My impression of APDA is more like the 2nd, but I have less experience with it).

Edited by Squirrelloid
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You know, the correct response to bad PR is to make an effort to have good PR, not just ignore it entirely.  Maybe we should spend more time engaging the rest of the world instead of isolating ourselves in a bubble?

 

on a totally different note, i found the example NPTE round resolution to be terrible.  While T is a thing in NPDA (although, back when I did it in the early 00's, it wasn't argued well much of the time, which let people who did know how to argue it run over teams), resolutions didn't tend to be that hyper-specific.  I did debate 'This house would let the wookie win' and other pithy resolutions which almost demanded, or at least invited, metaphorical interpretation. (Not that there wasn't a number of terrible resolutions.  I remember losing a QF round as negative against a resolution that was pretty much "Resolved: Greenspan is right"... in early 2001 when everyone worshipped at the altar of Greenspan, and the other team's only argument was pretty much 'he's Greenspan'.)

 

But there is a difference between doing the work to metaphorically interpret a resolution and just saying f*ck the resolution.  (My impression of APDA is more like the 2nd, but I have less experience with it).

Unless APDA has changed a lot in 10 years, that's correct, with the sole exception of the Princeton tournament that enforces tight link resolutions, The final round of the first APDA tournament I ever went to had a gov't team that ran "This house believes marijuana is better than alcohol," with a significant argument being the coolness of skull bongs.

 

In any case, I've given my opinion before on these articles--you may not like it, but this is how the rest of the world sees policy debate when they see an actual round. The vast majority of arguments made in policy debate rounds would never be taken seriously by actual policymakers. Fortunately for the reputation of debate, most non-debaters don't know what a modern policy round looks like, and still accord academic debate the respect they associate with conventional argument.

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You know, the correct response to bad PR is to make an effort to have good PR, not just ignore it entirely.  Maybe we should spend more time engaging the rest of the world instead of isolating ourselves in a bubble?

 

on a totally different note, i found the example NPTE round resolution to be terrible.  While T is a thing in NPDA (although, back when I did it in the early 00's, it wasn't argued well much of the time, which let people who did know how to argue it run over teams), resolutions didn't tend to be that hyper-specific.  I did debate 'This house would let the wookie win' and other pithy resolutions which almost demanded, or at least invited, metaphorical interpretation. (Not that there wasn't a number of terrible resolutions.  I remember losing a QF round as negative against a resolution that was pretty much "Resolved: Greenspan is right"... in early 2001 when everyone worshipped at the altar of Greenspan, and the other team's only argument was pretty much 'he's Greenspan'.)

 

But there is a difference between doing the work to metaphorically interpret a resolution and just saying f*ck the resolution.  (My impression of APDA is more like the 2nd, but I have less experience with it).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect

 

Also, try justifying why a black K team is allowed to say "Fuck the time" and go over-time to a non debater. 

 

There's no easy way to educate lay persons about the merits of an identity performance without backlash. I'll take the bubble. 

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect

 

Also, try justifying why a black K team is allowed to say "Fuck the time" and go over-time to a non debater. 

 

There's no easy way to educate lay persons about the merits of an identity performance without backlash. I'll take the bubble. 

 

If you can't convince a non-debater, that suggests there's a problem with the argument. #echochamber

 

(I'm not making a claim one way or another about the merits of the position, just that arguments which can only be defended to a small self-selecting group which agrees with them are probably wrong).

Edited by Squirrelloid

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If you can't convince a non-debater, that suggests there's a problem with the argument. #echochamber

 

(I'm not making a claim one way or another about the merits of the position, just that arguments which can only be defended to a small self-selecting group which agrees with them are probably wrong).

 

Anyone want to help me? I'm making a list of hard to understand K authors that would be difficult to advocate outside of the debate space/Philosophy Majors with a focus in Critical Theory. 

1. DnG

2. Foucault

3. Baudrillard

4. Lacan

5. Zizek 

6. Spivak

7. Badiou

8. Batillie (spelling is wrong idc) 

9. Butler

10. Wilderson 

11. Agamben

 

Am I forgetting anything? Are you going to tell me that it's easy to convince people that even such simple concepts as Rhizomes or Geneology are key to revolutionary change? If you honestly think that the arguments are wrong just because you cannot easily convince lay persons, than you might as well judge Public Forum. 

 

Also, I'll concede that it is a liberal echochamber, but I would argue that this is always better than the negative PR and actual damage that can be done from articles like that. Remember the comment threads on the atlantic article? Remember the death threats on the /pol/ threads ABOUT the Atlantic article? Is that such a good idea? 

Edited by RainSilves

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Anyone want to help me? I'm making a list of hard to understand K authors that would be difficult to advocate outside of the debate space/Philosophy Majors with a focus in Critical Theory. 

1. DnG

2. Foucault

3. Baudrillard

4. Lacan

5. Zizek 

6. Spivak

7. Badiou

8. Batillie (spelling is wrong idc) 

9. Butler

10. Wilderson 

11. Agamben

 

Am I forgetting anything? Are you going to tell me that it's easy to convince people that even such simple concepts as Rhizomes or Geneology are key to revolutionary change? If you honestly think that the arguments are wrong just because you cannot easily convince lay persons, than you might as well judge Public Forum. 

 

Also, I'll concede that it is a liberal echochamber, but I would argue that this is always better than the negative PR and actual damage that can be done from articles like that. Remember the comment threads on the atlantic article? Remember the death threats on the /pol/ threads ABOUT the Atlantic article? Is that such a good idea?

 

Well, if something is key to revolutionary change but you can't explain it to anyone without a philosophy M.A., your revolution seems unlikely to happen (or it'll devolve into oppressive totalitarianism--I have a card from "The History of Communism" talking about how all the high minded intricate theory of Marx and Lenin, even if it had value, was never understood by the masses of uneducated or even illiterate bureaucrats who implemented Soviet communism).

 

Some more accessible theories from your authors can be articulated to a lay person, though--Foucault and Butler, I think, have some accessible ideas. Zizek also tries to be public, but being a Stalinist tends to keep anyone from taking you too seriously.

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Anyone want to help me? I'm making a list of hard to understand K authors that would be difficult to advocate outside of the debate space/Philosophy Majors with a focus in Critical Theory. 

1. DnG

2. Foucault

3. Baudrillard

4. Lacan

5. Zizek 

6. Spivak

7. Badiou

8. Batillie (spelling is wrong idc) 

9. Butler

10. Wilderson 

11. Agamben

 

Am I forgetting anything? Are you going to tell me that it's easy to convince people that even such simple concepts as Rhizomes or Geneology are key to revolutionary change? If you honestly think that the arguments are wrong just because you cannot easily convince lay persons, than you might as well judge Public Forum. 

 

FWIW, i've never seen a convincing debate presentation of anything in DNG either.  They probably make more sense *outside* a debate context, because you can't explain them in 26 minutes.  (To me, Tabula Rasa  means I don't bring any of my knowledge into the round with me, so you can't use my understanding of philosophers as the basis of your argumentation).

 

Foucault is perfectly defensible and explainable outside debate rounds.

 

My impression of Lacan is that he is nonsense, since the metaphors of his I do have the background knowledge to understand fall apart on inspection, and that means i have little reason to trust his other metaphors or the arguments he makes with them.  I'd love to hear a public non-debate presentation of Lacan that actually made any sense, from someone who understands both him and the material he uses to argue.  I'm pretty sure this person doesn't exist though, since anyone with that strong a grounding in the appropriate physical sciences or mathematics has better things to do with their time.

 

Zizek's logic is terrible. When you try to break down his claims and warrants into logical structure, there's gaping holes.  Another person whose garners legitimacy through obfuscation.  Further, he's an advocate of Stalinist totalitarian marxism.  He openly pines for the 'glory days' of the USSR.  Apparently one Holodomor and a succession of disastrous 5-year-plans wasn't enough genocide.  I'd say he's the perfect example of indefensibly wrong.

 

Pretty sure it's Bataille, fwiw.

 

----

 

Hilbert, who set the agenda for much of 20th century mathematics, is also notable for saying "One must be able to say at all times - instead of points, straight lines, and planes - tables, chairs, and beer mugs".  That is, no matter how complicated, we must be able to reduce the discussion to something a lay person can understand.  Trust me, math has a far harder time of this than philosophy does, but I've never seen a mathematician throw up their hands and say "I couldn't possibly communicate this to a lay person".  Having two good friends who are mathematicians, they were nothing but helpful when I asked questions trying to figure out exactly what it was they do.  That doesn't mean I could go home and do a proof of it, but they've managed to give me a general sense of some pretty arcane math, and why that math was interesting or important.

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Anyone want to help me? I'm making a list of hard to understand K authors that would be difficult to advocate outside of the debate space/Philosophy Majors with a focus in Critical Theory. 

1. DnG

2. Foucault

3. Baudrillard

4. Lacan

5. Zizek 

6. Spivak

7. Badiou

8. Batillie (spelling is wrong idc) 

9. Butler

10. Wilderson 

11. Agamben

 

Am I forgetting anything? Are you going to tell me that it's easy to convince people that even such simple concepts as Rhizomes or Geneology are key to revolutionary change? If you honestly think that the arguments are wrong just because you cannot easily convince lay persons, than you might as well judge Public Forum. 

 

Also, I'll concede that it is a liberal echochamber, but I would argue that this is always better than the negative PR and actual damage that can be done from articles like that. Remember the comment threads on the atlantic article? Remember the death threats on the /pol/ threads ABOUT the Atlantic article? Is that such a good idea? 

DnG can be explained outside of the debate space - but it'll take more along the lines of 5-6 hours, not 30 minutes. 

 

Bataille can be explained outside of the debate space, but it'll take more along the lines of 1-3 hours, not 30 minutes.

 

I'll agree that trying to read high theory within the debate space requires a massive reductionism of the philosophy on the part of the debater deploying the theory; I don't think 8 minute give the philosophers justice for their theories 

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This article just seems fundamentally wrong.  If not in the debate space, then where do we get to ask these questions, where do we get to express our" personal experience".  Debate is not about the actual resolution - that changes year to year.  It is about how and what is the best form of education and subsequently how each team should access that education and make policy or non policy decisions based off of the form of education.

 

If both teams agree that the best form of education is a standard policy round than the judge should evaluate that round based off of policy making.

BUT, If a team thinks that there is something inherently wrong with CEDA or policy debate itself or the resolution, than those issues should be debated. There is nothing wrong with asking the questions of why and how one debates and their relationship to that topic.  If one believes that debate on the topic is important - defend that topic debate is important.  Without K affs that question the governing assumptions of society why debate?  We just become some crop of students that grow in a field of hegemonic normativity that refuse to justify their ethical stand point before justifying their plan.  

"Desalination is cool, but why are we pretending to be the USFG.  Why is that good? "

 I'm not saying that we should forget about policy affs altogether, but we should have to justify why we do what we do..

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The fact that the article writer thinks all project affs as she/he/they like to call them are based on personal experience solely is just wrong.

She obviously didn't see Towson TW win CEDA on actual arguments not based on personal experience.

Edited by tommy949

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Seriously, who is this author? No one in NPDA knows who she is anymore, and to homogonize all teams who choose not to defend the resolution (OU CL, Towson JR, Lewis & Clark CH, NAU RS) is just rediculous and attempts to undercut the accomplishments of every one of those debaters. Teams that choose not to defend the resoultion do the exact same amount of research (I can only speak for NPDA since that's the circuit I compete in, but Emily and McKay of Lewis & Clark had an astounding amout of specific statistics about female pariticpation in parli debate), and in some cases even more, than the "traditional" teams since they have to prep for "traditonal" arguments as well as the methods debate. Plus, reducing these arguments down to nothing more than personal expereince is problematic as it attempts to erase the justifications and harmful experieinces these individuals have had in the debate space; it allows people to discount individual's experiences and not focus on the larger issues of debate. All in all, this article serves to reify why people run the types of arguments they do.

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It's okay y'all, I'm sure some members of cross-x will help educate people about policy debate! 

 

People used to debate by having actual arguments about the topic at hand. A few years ago, a black team decided not to do that, and just said, basically "Logic racist!". The judges, being SJWs, said that they won. They were the national champions.

Wow what a misinformed quote! I'm sure that a cross-x member will be able to help explain how these arguments aren't simply "logic racist" and that believing in social justice doesn't make you a "Social Justice Warrior."

 

In reply to this:

 

the SJW rhetoric got adopted by privileged white kids and now they get to use it to win. The result was a 2014 Tournament of Champions win by a team of two Asian kids running a "model minority" victimization argument on both sides of a resolution that was about Latin American economic policy.

oh. okay. yeah. uh. that works too.

Edited by Miro
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What's wrong with asian kids running a victimization argument?

It goes to a point Squirreloid and I have made here before--for all the rhetoric of "empowering oppressed minorities" used by the pro-K side, at least in the high school, the actual effect is that it gets used by the most privileged debaters as a strategic tool to reinforce privilege. A school like North Lawndale may be running K Affs, but the teams that win with it are rich magnets and suburban schools. Because the real privilege in debate isn't about race or gender, it's about money and support.

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It's okay y'all, I'm sure some members of cross-x will help educate people about policy debate! 

 

Wow what a misinformed quote! I'm sure that a cross-x member will be able to help explain how these arguments aren't simply "logic racist" and that believing in social justice doesn't make you a "Social Justice Warrior."

 

In reply to this:

 

 

oh. okay. yeah. uh. that works too.

Well, given that the NDCA posted 2AC answer by Centennial KK to "there is no model minority myth" was just "that's racist," I didn't disagree.

 

But you're welcome to try to dispel those commenters' beliefs with your well polished debate arguments. You do realize that The Federalist is around where Ted Cruz is on the political spectrum, with similar commenters, right? Consider it a test--if you care about what outsiders think, take your best shot at convincing them; if you don't care, then why bother?

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It goes to a point Squirreloid and I have made here before--for all the rhetoric of "empowering oppressed minorities" used by the pro-K side, at least in the high school, the actual effect is that it gets used by the most privileged debaters as a strategic tool to reinforce privilege. A school like North Lawndale may be running K Affs, but the teams that win with it are rich magnets and suburban schools. Because the real privilege in debate isn't about race or gender, it's about money and support.

I agree and disagree with it. 

 

Yes it is probably true that debaters who have oppressed social locations usually only obtain success if they have the money but it doesn't mean that suburban people of color who read race args don't deal with racism in debate. Many circuits haven't liberalized yet so they get attacked with micro aggression and isolation.

And it shows because the number of oppressed identities reading arguments about their oppression at tournaments like the TOC is very low.

 

It doesn't mean that we should not have these discussions because they may be privileged in debate but they sure as hell aren't outside of debate. Sometimes debate is the only space that they get to talk about these issues. This is definitely the case for many Queer debaters who don't have the ability to come out to their families.

 

You are looking at oppression very rigidly but it can be very confusing and different for each and every debater. To one person it can look like someone using their own identity just to win debates and they happen to go to a wealthy school so they win even more but to them it could be a legitimate thing that influences the way that these kids act in their every day life. 

 

Just b/c there is a rich/poor divide when it comes to debate programs doesn't mean that debaters shouldn't explore these topics 

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