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LD 2015 Nationals Topic Discussion

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Resolved: Inaction in the face of injustice makes individuals morally culpable.

 

My thoughts - I really like this resolution because it shifts away from a specific area of research and goes back to a more traditional approach that LD should be more focused on. There isn't necessary state action so it is most likely going to revolve around the individual citizen and how they act in accordance with what is moral/just

 

Think neg has a better edge because they only have to prove some scenarios in which complicity is inevitable or morally permissible. I don't know on face how permissibility would interact with culpability, but I think events such as war would probably warrant times where actions and omissions can be permissible and not make an agent morally culpable. Also, it's kind of hard to universalize from a Kantian standponit after thinking about aff ground for a while. Not too sure though

 

What do y'all think?

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I like this resolution also. I agree with your analysis though, the negative can attack the blanket statement from a wide variety of angles. They should have reversed the phrasing, and that way the topic bias would counteract neg bias rather than buttress it. Oh well. Not like this is anything new.

Brainstorming time:

"Culpable". What does that mean exactly? They should be punished? Probably not a winnable interpretation, but it could be annoying to deal with. "In the face" of injustice could potentially have some sneaky meanings. Being inactive when injustice is right in front of you might be different than being inactive when it's somewhere else. The affirmative might be able to use this to deal with negatives who talk about wars or corruption etc. On the other side, maybe some kind of argument or K could be made that this mindset of responding to injustice when it's staring you in the face neglects hidden systemic violence, and/or forces active violence underground, giving rise to worse outcomes? Pretty link of omissiony, but that's rarely stopped anyone before. And Singer has a million books of material, so might as well use it.

What kind of actions should be done? I feel like perhaps psychology arguments about a "just do something, anything" kind of bias could be made relevant. I don't like this approach to morality that's all about what should not be done, personally. It's never made much sense to me. I think morality should be more direct and affirmation oriented.

What kind of injustice? Some kinds of injustice don't really seem to matter to me. If a parent pays more attention to their own child than to the child of someone else, for example, is that a situation where we should intervene? Probably not. I think this shows some kinds of injustice may actually be good in themselves (and if your opponent tries to object that parents favoring their children is not "injustice", then you can exaggeratedly accuse them of trying to define the resolution in such a way that the negative is almost automatically wrong, lol). If I have gotten 500 jellybeans on Halloween, and learn that my neighbor has 501, should we round up everyone in the neighborhood and spend all night redistributing the jelly bean wealth? I think it's clear that letting some things slide is necessary, impossible to avoid. Although, I suppose the validity of that last example depends on whether you're defining injustice as an outcome, or as a quality of someone's actions. (Either definition seems like another potential link to a systemic violence K. Achieving equal outcomes by using slavery as the means would not be good, for example. It is not just the end-state that matters. This would require some spin.)
 

Actually, I think the jellybean idea leads us to an interesting argument: if we didn't live in a society that tolerated minor to moderate injustices when they stared them in the face, then our society would soon collapse, and much greater injustices would exist. Kant turned on his head. Inaction when one's morals are telling one to do something can be its own kind of virtue. Vigilantism DA? (Twitter mobbing DA?) Similarly, individuals respond to injustice in ways different than collective groups can. Individuals can't coordinate very easily and lack lots of information. It is probably best if individuals abstain from attempting to help people in some situations, like emergencies, and in so doing make room for formal organizations to take charge. If some incompetent and untrained but well-meaning citizen rushes into a burning building, the firefighters now have an even harder job to do and the risk of someone ending up dead is higher. The "hero" should have remained inactive in the face of that injustice. Even worse if 5000 people rush into the building, of course, so Kant is definitely not going to win many rounds for the affirmative here.

I wonder if it could be argued that justice is a concept about society's overall trends and balances, rather than a concept about specific relations between specific people. I think it could be done via a combination of definitions and social contract stuff. That would turn the resolution into "Resolved: sociopolitical activism is good for individuals to do" which seems more defensible to me and would help prevent the negative from cherry picking counter examples.

lol: inaction does not exist, blah blah eastern philosophy etc. individuals do not exist, etc.

lol: doing something meta/performative about the injustice inherent in skewed speaker times

lol: injustice does not have a face, personifying abstract concepts is bad. Alternatively, something like this could perhaps be yet another potential link to the systemic violence K - no one is "doing" these acts of injustice, we need to change the whole system and focus our attention on pragmatic actions rather than on assigning moral blame and/or social stigma and/or punishments to others (perhaps it could be argued as another link to this that the entirety of the "justice" paradigm is focused on this blaming aspect, whether it disavows it or not, some of Nietzsche's work (tarantulas!) seems relevant here). This article seems relevant to this kind of argument to me: http://slatestarcodex.com/2014/07/30/meditations-on-moloch/. If I saw a team that read Ginsberg in round I'd give them auto 30 speaks, I love that poem. The face of injustice is Moloch.

Also, inb4 garbage teams say "I did not act when they came for the communists..."

Overall, if I were debating this topic I don't know what I'd do on the affirmative. But on the negative, I would actually use a few of those joke ideas, I think. I would like to try to synthesize the "eastern philosophy" ideas, the Nietzschean criticisms of justice, and the arguments about systemic violence, along with some arguments of a non-interventionist bent, along with some of the arguments which are more obvious and easier to understand. Blame is nonsensical and counterproductive and nihilistic. The idea of balance metaphorically underlying ideas of justice is also problematic for similar reasons, because there is no nonlocal frame of reference. Looking at either "individuals" and their "(in)actions" or at outcomes for a local snapshot in time and space rather than at universal social-environmental systems that change dynamically over time is nonsensical and counterproductive and nihilistic (cuz it alienates us from truth/lived experience, or something like that). Trying to eliminate that which is bad rather than to uphold that which is good is NCN. Conceptualizing some possibilities as more "active" than others and prioritizing those is NCN, our very existence is active and ought to be joyfully affirmed. Parts of the world might not suit our desires, but this does not force us to be unhappy, and efforts at change will be more successful if they have the correct philosophical underpinnings. The idea that we are responsible for outcomes or actions or systems which are outside our "control" is NCN. We should stick with our own perspective to deal with problems, and speak only for ourselves not others, anything else is alienating. Getting all those ideas across coherently (and consistently, without distorting anyone's intent, and with adequate non-mystical or jargony explanation) while leaving enough time to address the case directly would be a challenge, but I think a manageable one worth tackling, although it would require much more effort than I've spent here. The goal is to have these ideas braid around each other in a way that makes them strong enough to support one another but independent enough that none of them will damage the others if refuted. Multiple overlapping interlocking justifications to vote neg. I love it when cases like this are possible. Broad moral resolutions are so much fun, they let creativity of thought actually matter.

This description is a little disorganized. Please don't think that's a weakness of the ideas inside it. This post is a hastily scribbled design, an actual case would look similar to this but very different at the same time, and it would replace the vague statements about intuitions with better thought-out statements of rigorous logic. If anyone wants to run this or adapt it as their own somehow, feel free to shoot me a PM. If you think it's stupid, or don't understand what I'm babbling about, or want a clarification, or want to laugh at my ridiculousness, say so here.
 


I

 

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,
who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,
who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated,
who passed through universities with radiant cool eyes hallucinating Arkansas and Blake-light tragedy among the scholars of war,
who were expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the windows of the skull,
who cowered in unshaven rooms in underwear, burning their money in wastebaskets and listening to the Terror through the wall,
who got busted in their pubic beards returning through Laredo with a belt of marijuana for New York,
who ate fire in paint hotels or drank turpentine in Paradise Alley, death, or purgatoried their torsos night after night
with dreams, with drugs, with waking nightmares, alcohol and cock and endless balls,
incomparable blind streets of shuddering cloud and lightning in the mind leaping toward poles of Canada & Paterson, illuminating all the motionless world of Time between,
Peyote solidities of halls, backyard green tree cemetery dawns, wine drunkenness over the rooftops, storefront boroughs of teahead joyride neon blinking traffic light, sun and moon and tree vibrations in the roaring winter dusks of Brooklyn, ashcan rantings and kind king light of mind,
who chained themselves to subways for the endless ride from Battery to holy Bronx on benzedrine until the noise of wheels and children brought them down shuddering mouth-wracked and battered bleak of brain all drained of brilliance in the drear light of Zoo,
who sank all night in submarine light of Bickford’s floated out and sat through the stale beer afternoon in desolate Fugazzi’s, listening to the crack of doom on the hydrogen jukebox,
who talked continuously seventy hours from park to pad to bar to Bellevue to museum to the Brooklyn Bridge,
a lost battalion of platonic conversationalists jumping down the stoops off fire escapes off windowsills off Empire State out of the moon,
yacketayakking screaming vomiting whispering facts and memories and anecdotes and eyeball kicks and shocks of hospitals and jails and wars,
whole intellects disgorged in total recall for seven days and nights with brilliant eyes, meat for the Synagogue cast on the pavement,
who vanished into nowhere Zen New Jersey leaving a trail of ambiguous picture postcards of Atlantic City Hall,
suffering Eastern sweats and Tangerian bone-grindings and migraines of China under junk-withdrawal in Newark’s bleak furnished room,   
who wandered around and around at midnight in the railroad yard wondering where to go, and went, leaving no broken hearts,
who lit cigarettes in boxcars boxcars boxcars racketing through snow toward lonesome farms in grandfather night,
who studied Plotinus Poe St. John of the Cross telepathy and bop kabbalah because the cosmos instinctively vibrated at their feet in Kansas,   
who loned it through the streets of Idaho seeking visionary indian angels who were visionary indian angels,
who thought they were only mad when Baltimore gleamed in supernatural ecstasy,
who jumped in limousines with the Chinaman of Oklahoma on the impulse of winter midnight streetlight smalltown rain,
who lounged hungry and lonesome through Houston seeking jazz or sex or soup, and followed the brilliant Spaniard to converse about America and Eternity, a hopeless task, and so took ship to Africa,
who disappeared into the volcanoes of Mexico leaving behind nothing but the shadow of dungarees and the lava and ash of poetry scattered in fireplace Chicago,
who reappeared on the West Coast investigating the FBI in beards and shorts with big pacifist eyes sexy in their dark skin passing out incomprehensible leaflets,
who burned cigarette holes in their arms protesting the narcotic tobacco haze of Capitalism,
who distributed Supercommunist pamphlets in Union Square weeping and undressing while the sirens of Los Alamos wailed them down, and wailed down Wall, and the Staten Island ferry also wailed,
who broke down crying in white gymnasiums naked and trembling before the machinery of other skeletons,
who bit detectives in the neck and shrieked with delight in policecars for committing no crime but their own wild cooking pederasty and intoxication,
who howled on their knees in the subway and were dragged off the roof waving genitals and manuscripts,
who let themselves be fucked in the ass by saintly motorcyclists, and screamed with joy,
who blew and were blown by those human seraphim, the sailors, caresses of Atlantic and Caribbean love,
who balled in the morning in the evenings in rosegardens and the grass of public parks and cemeteries scattering their semen freely to whomever come who may,
who hiccuped endlessly trying to giggle but wound up with a sob behind a partition in a Turkish Bath when the blond & naked angel came to pierce them with a sword,
who lost their loveboys to the three old shrews of fate the one eyed shrew of the heterosexual dollar the one eyed shrew that winks out of the womb and the one eyed shrew that does nothing but sit on her ass and snip the intellectual golden threads of the craftsman’s loom,
who copulated ecstatic and insatiate with a bottle of beer a sweetheart a package of cigarettes a candle and fell off the bed, and continued along the floor and down the hall and ended fainting on the wall with a vision of ultimate cunt and come eluding the last gyzym of consciousness,
who sweetened the snatches of a million girls trembling in the sunset, and were red eyed in the morning but prepared to sweeten the snatch of the sunrise, flashing buttocks under barns and naked in the lake,
who went out whoring through Colorado in myriad stolen night-cars, N.C., secret hero of these poems, cocksman and Adonis of Denver—joy to the memory of his innumerable lays of girls in empty lots & diner backyards, moviehouses’ rickety rows, on mountaintops in caves or with gaunt waitresses in familiar roadside lonely petticoat upliftings & especially secret gas-station solipsisms of johns, & hometown alleys too,
who faded out in vast sordid movies, were shifted in dreams, woke on a sudden Manhattan, and picked themselves up out of basements hung-over with heartless Tokay and horrors of Third Avenue iron dreams & stumbled to unemployment offices,
who walked all night with their shoes full of blood on the snowbank docks waiting for a door in the East River to open to a room full of steam-heat and opium,
who created great suicidal dramas on the apartment cliff-banks of the Hudson under the wartime blur floodlight of the moon & their heads shall be crowned with laurel in oblivion,
who ate the lamb stew of the imagination or digested the crab at the muddy bottom of the rivers of Bowery,
who wept at the romance of the streets with their pushcarts full of onions and bad music,
who sat in boxes breathing in the darkness under the bridge, and rose up to build harpsichords in their lofts,
who coughed on the sixth floor of Harlem crowned with flame under the tubercular sky surrounded by orange crates of theology,
who scribbled all night rocking and rolling over lofty incantations which in the yellow morning were stanzas of gibberish,
who cooked rotten animals lung heart feet tail borsht & tortillas dreaming of the pure vegetable kingdom,
who plunged themselves under meat trucks looking for an egg,
who threw their watches off the roof to cast their ballot for Eternity outside of Time, & alarm clocks fell on their heads every day for the next decade,
who cut their wrists three times successively unsuccessfully, gave up and were forced to open antique stores where they thought they were growing old and cried,
who were burned alive in their innocent flannel suits on Madison Avenue amid blasts of leaden verse & the tanked-up clatter of the iron regiments of fashion & the nitroglycerine shrieks of the fairies of advertising & the mustard gas of sinister intelligent editors, or were run down by the drunken taxicabs of Absolute Reality,
who jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge this actually happened and walked away unknown and forgotten into the ghostly daze of Chinatown soup alleyways & firetrucks, not even one free beer,
who sang out of their windows in despair, fell out of the subway window, jumped in the filthy Passaic, leaped on negroes, cried all over the street, danced on broken wineglasses barefoot smashed phonograph records of nostalgic European 1930s German jazz finished the whiskey and threw up groaning into the bloody toilet, moans in their ears and the blast of colossal steamwhistles,
who barreled down the highways of the past journeying to each other’s hotrod-Golgotha jail-solitude watch or Birmingham jazz incarnation,
who drove crosscountry seventytwo hours to find out if I had a vision or you had a vision or he had a vision to find out Eternity,
who journeyed to Denver, who died in Denver, who came back to Denver & waited in vain, who watched over Denver & brooded & loned in Denver and finally went away to find out the Time, & now Denver is lonesome for her heroes,
who fell on their knees in hopeless cathedrals praying for each other’s salvation and light and breasts, until the soul illuminated its hair for a second,
who crashed through their minds in jail waiting for impossible criminals with golden heads and the charm of reality in their hearts who sang sweet blues to Alcatraz,
who retired to Mexico to cultivate a habit, or Rocky Mount to tender Buddha or Tangiers to boys or Southern Pacific to the black locomotive or Harvard to Narcissus to Woodlawn to the daisychain or grave,
who demanded sanity trials accusing the radio of hypnotism & were left with their insanity & their hands & a hung jury,
who threw potato salad at CCNY lecturers on Dadaism and subsequently presented themselves on the granite steps of the madhouse with shaven heads and harlequin speech of suicide, demanding instantaneous lobotomy,
and who were given instead the concrete void of insulin Metrazol electricity hydrotherapy psychotherapy occupational therapy pingpong & amnesia,
who in humorless protest overturned only one symbolic pingpong table, resting briefly in catatonia,
returning years later truly bald except for a wig of blood, and tears and fingers, to the visible madman doom of the wards of the madtowns of the East,
Pilgrim State’s Rockland’s and Greystone’s foetid halls, bickering with the echoes of the soul, rocking and rolling in the midnight solitude-bench dolmen-realms of love, dream of life a nightmare, bodies turned to stone as heavy as the moon,
with mother finally ******, and the last fantastic book flung out of the tenement window, and the last door closed at 4 A.M. and the last telephone slammed at the wall in reply and the last furnished room emptied down to the last piece of mental furniture, a yellow paper rose twisted on a wire hanger in the closet, and even that imaginary, nothing but a hopeful little bit of hallucination—
ah, Carl, while you are not safe I am not safe, and now you’re really in the total animal soup of time—
and who therefore ran through the icy streets obsessed with a sudden flash of the alchemy of the use of the ellipsis catalogue a variable measure and the vibrating plane,
who dreamt and made incarnate gaps in Time & Space through images juxtaposed, and trapped the archangel of the soul between 2 visual images and joined the elemental verbs and set the noun and dash of consciousness together jumping with sensation of Pater Omnipotens Aeterna Deus
to recreate the syntax and measure of poor human prose and stand before you speechless and intelligent and shaking with shame, rejected yet confessing out the soul to conform to the rhythm of thought in his naked and endless head,
the madman bum and angel beat in Time, unknown, yet putting down here what might be left to say in time come after death,
and rose reincarnate in the ghostly clothes of jazz in the goldhorn shadow of the band and blew the suffering of America’s naked mind for love into an eli eli lamma lamma sabacthani saxophone cry that shivered the cities down to the last radio
with the absolute heart of the poem of life butchered out of their own bodies good to eat a thousand years.

 

II

 

What sphinx of cement and aluminum bashed open their skulls and ate up their brains and imagination?
Moloch! Solitude! Filth! Ugliness! Ashcans and unobtainable dollars! Children screaming under the stairways! Boys sobbing in armies! Old men weeping in the parks!
Moloch! Moloch! Nightmare of Moloch! Moloch the loveless! Mental Moloch! Moloch the heavy judger of men!
Moloch the incomprehensible prison! Moloch the crossbone soulless jailhouse and Congress of sorrows! Moloch whose buildings are judgment! Moloch the vast stone of war! Moloch the stunned governments!
Moloch whose mind is pure machinery! Moloch whose blood is running money! Moloch whose fingers are ten armies! Moloch whose breast is a cannibal dynamo! Moloch whose ear is a smoking tomb!
Moloch whose eyes are a thousand blind windows! Moloch whose skyscrapers stand in the long streets like endless Jehovahs! Moloch whose factories dream and croak in the fog! Moloch whose smoke-stacks and antennae crown the cities!
Moloch whose love is endless oil and stone! Moloch whose soul is electricity and banks! Moloch whose poverty is the specter of genius! Moloch whose fate is a cloud of sexless hydrogen! Moloch whose name is the Mind!
Moloch in whom I sit lonely! Moloch in whom I dream Angels! Crazy in Moloch! Cocksucker in Moloch! Lacklove and manless in Moloch!
Moloch who entered my soul early! Moloch in whom I am a consciousness without a body! Moloch who frightened me out of my natural ecstasy! Moloch whom I abandon! Wake up in Moloch! Light streaming out of the sky!
Moloch! Moloch! Robot apartments! invisible suburbs! skeleton treasuries! blind capitals! demonic industries! spectral nations! invincible madhouses! granite cocks! monstrous bombs!
They broke their backs lifting Moloch to Heaven! Pavements, trees, radios, tons! lifting the city to Heaven which exists and is everywhere about us!
Visions! omens! hallucinations! miracles! ecstasies! gone down the American river!
Dreams! adorations! illuminations! religions! the whole boatload of sensitive bullshit!
Breakthroughs! over the river! flips and crucifixions! gone down the flood! Highs! Epiphanies! Despairs! Ten years’ animal screams and suicides! Minds! New loves! Mad generation! down on the rocks of Time!
Real holy laughter in the river! They saw it all! the wild eyes! the holy yells! They bade farewell! They jumped off the roof! to solitude! waving! carrying flowers! Down to the river! into the street!

 

III

 

Carl Solomon! I’m with you in Rockland
   where you’re madder than I am
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you must feel very strange
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you imitate the shade of my mother
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you’ve murdered your twelve secretaries
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you laugh at this invisible humor
I’m with you in Rockland
   where we are great writers on the same dreadful typewriter
I’m with you in Rockland
   where your condition has become serious and is reported on the radio
I’m with you in Rockland
   where the faculties of the skull no longer admit the worms of the senses
I'm with you in Rockland
   where you drink the tea of the breasts of the spinsters of Utica
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you pun on the bodies of your nurses the harpies of the Bronx
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you scream in a straightjacket that you’re losing the game of the actual pingpong of the abyss
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you bang on the catatonic piano the soul is innocent and immortal it should never die ungodly in an armed madhouse
I’m with you in Rockland
   where fifty more shocks will never return your soul to its body again from its pilgrimage to a cross in the void
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you accuse your doctors of insanity and plot the Hebrew socialist revolution against the fascist national Golgotha
I’m with you in Rockland
   where you will split the heavens of Long Island and resurrect your living human Jesus from the superhuman tomb
I’m with you in Rockland
   where there are twentyfive thousand mad comrades all together singing the final stanzas of the Internationale
I’m with you in Rockland
   where we hug and kiss the United States under our bedsheets the United States that coughs all night and won’t let us sleep
I’m with you in Rockland
   where we wake up electrified out of the coma by our own souls’ airplanes roaring over the roof they’ve come to drop angelic bombs the hospital illuminates itself    imaginary walls collapse    O skinny legions run outside    O starry-spangled shock of mercy the eternal war is here    O victory forget your underwear we’re free
I’m with you in Rockland
   in my dreams you walk dripping from a sea-journey on the highway across America in tears to the door of my cottage in the Western night

 

Upon rereading the Ginsberg poem, it actually has a surprising degree of relevance to debate, IMO. Interesting. I also stumbled across this poem, which I like a lot as well: http://www.bopsecrets.org/rexroth/poems/1950s.htm#THOU SHALT NOT KILL.

Edited by Chaos
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Resolved: Inaction in the face of injustice makes individuals morally culpable.


I instantly thought of the topic in terms of moral developmental psychology for example Lawrence Kohlberg. He studied through multiple experiments the stages of moral development that come in the face of certain situations. This could be used as a criterion or as a general argument for either side of the resolution depending on the stage of development

 

I also saw the word "individuals" as a loophole for this debate as individuals could be seen as adults or adolescents.  This could be an interesting approach to the topic

 

The main argument that I was thinking was defining the true meaning of "injustice" Does it mean face to face acts of injustice? or societal injustice like corruption and sexism?

 

Another idea to throw out their is the ideas that Henry David Thoreau presented about civil disobedience in relation to morally justification

 

I have never truly debated a topic before without a governmental actor as a fundamental aspect to the resolution so nationals will be a completely new experience.

 

Hopes this helps :) Good luck to all debating it!      If anyone is interested in brainstorming more... PM me

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Resolved: Inaction in the face of injustice makes individuals morally culpable.

I instantly thought of the topic in terms of moral developmental psychology for example Lawrence Kohlberg. He studied through multiple experiments the stages of moral development that come in the face of certain situations. This could be used as a criterion or as a general argument for either side of the resolution depending on the stage of development
 
Don't defend straight up Kohlberg; his secondaries might a better way to go. The basis of feminist care ethics was made in response to Kohlberg saying that men are usually more ethical than women because they can understand universal concepts such as liberty better than teh wimmens.  

 

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I just realized that the affirmative may be able to argue that they need only prove some individuals have obligations to act in the face of injustice, allowing them to focus the debate more narrowly. Edit: lol sorry Maunchline, overlooked that part of your post.
 

 Resolved: Inaction in the face of injustice makes individuals morally culpable.

 

This phrasing is a bit awkward. Individuals are either culpable for something or not. Inaction doesn't cause or "make" culpability exist. Culpability is an abstract moral/value judgement, not a material object that operates and is operated upon according to causal principles. Maybe I've just gone too far down the rabbit hole after reading all that poetry though, this feels like it's probably an overly semantic argument to make.

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How so? I'm genuinely interested (which means I'm not challenging you)

Perhaps this is slightly more Bifo, but the whole thing with 'cap sucks but if we try to fight it we fail, so we should do nothing' seems pretty inaction-y to me.

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Perhaps this is slightly more Bifo, but the whole thing with 'cap sucks but if we try to fight it we fail, so we should do nothing' seems pretty inaction-y to me.

 

I thought B said we should be actively trying to make things worse, which seems slightly distinct.

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I thought B said we should be actively trying to make things worse, which seems slightly distinct.

Well...sort of and sort of not (it also depends on which B you're talking about).

 

Baudrillard was more along the lines of continuously investing in the system until it collapsed, but also had some parts that were along the lines of 'do nothing' or let the system take hold. For instance, in Symbolic Exchange and Death, the part near the beginning where's he like, we should let ourselves die could work (depending on the specific paragraph you pick though it could also be advocating for radical suicide but meh). 

 

Bifo is straight up just, we need to withdraw and let shit go to pieces on its own, though, which is called radical laxity (IIRC, it's something like that). Either way, it offers an interesting take on the neg. 

Edited by SnarkosaurusRex
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You know, this resolution is hugely open to interpretation.

 

-which individuals?  The resolution doesn't require that the individuals who are inactive be morally culpable, just that *some* individuals are, as was astutely observed by Mauchline.

 

-Morally culpable for *what*?  The inaction? The injustice? Something else?  Does inaction in the face of injustice create moral culpability in general?  (That is, you can't be morally culpable for anything unless you've been inactive in the face of injustice?)

 

-Obviously culpability is something you'd have to define, but what is moral culpability as a joint term?  How is it different from other culpability?  (also, the resolution does not require any particular standard of culpability.  Proving negligent culpability should be sufficient).

 

-What is inaction?  How do we measure it?  If someone is failing to act on one injustice because they are acting on another one, are they really inactive?

 

-As always, (in)justice will require a definition.  What it means to be 'in the face of' it will also need interpretation.  Defining justice as 'giving each their due' creates a lot of aff wiggle room, because most people won't know what someone is due in many cases, and so won't know when they are in the face of injustice a lot of the time.

 

I think there are several tactics the affirmative could take to approaching the resolution which aim to reduce it to a tautology or get close enough that you're just arguing over edge cases.  

-Does the individual have to understand the injustice as injustice?  Culpability certainly suggests that, as does 'in the face of', and that greatly limits the scope the affirmative has to defend.  (Even if you don't defend a definition which requires knowledge).

-It will be a lot easier to defend an individual's moral culpability for the inaction than the injustice.  Depending on how 'moral culpability' is interpreted, assigning moral culpability for the inaction may be trivial to the point of tautology.

-Assigning moral culpability for the inaction of others to the individuals responsible for the originating injustice (rather than the inactive individuals) would also be a lot easier to defend.

 

I'd be prepared for a lot of semantic debates and theory.

Edited by Squirrelloid
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I already know the direction of the topic is going to be more focused on realism on the neg, so if you can pre-empt and even concede realism on the aff then that could be a potential starting strategy for limiting out a lot of arbitary neg args. I'm liking the sound of this

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I already know the direction of the topic is going to be more focused on realism on the neg, so if you can pre-empt and even concede realism on the aff then that could be a potential starting strategy for limiting out a lot of arbitary neg args. I'm liking the sound of this

Under my understanding of moral realism wouldn't that be an aff argument rather than a negative argument?

 

Wouldn't moral relativism be the negative argument?

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You're not wrong. What I am saying is that the aff is usually always locked into a moral absolutism framework on the aff within most LD topics and the neg gets util, consequentialism and realism frameworks. Within this rez, I can see people on the aff wanting to use a deontological framework to say that inaction is universally unacceptable and bad all the time, whereas the neg could be more likely to frame it as 'there are times where inaction is inevitable.'

 

 

Moral relativism could definitely be a neg arg, but I think putting realism on the aff is a good way to pre-empt any args that have to do with side constraints to preventing injustices.

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You're not wrong. What I am saying is that the aff is usually always locked into a moral absolutism framework on the aff within most LD topics and the neg gets util, consequentialism and realism frameworks. Within this rez, I can see people on the aff wanting to use a deontological framework to say that inaction is universally unacceptable and bad all the time, whereas the neg could be more likely to frame it as 'there are times where inaction is inevitable.'

 

 

Moral relativism could definitely be a neg arg, but I think putting realism on the aff is a good way to pre-empt any args that have to do with side constraints to preventing injustices.

 

Moral relativism could totally work aff.  The individual would be the one defining injustice in this case, and if they stand by while 'in the face of' something they consider injustice, that probably carries some moral culpability.  If we're being relativist, we aren't using an absolute measure of injustice after all, so saying morality is relative doesn't get an individual out of culpability because it's the individual's own idea of injustice they'd have to be confronted with.  You can't pull the 'the individual might not find it injust' card if you're being a true relativist, because then you aren't talking about a situation governed by the resolution.

Edited by Squirrelloid

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Moral relativism could totally work aff.  The individual would be the one defining injustice in this case, and if they stand by while 'in the face of' something they consider injustice, that probably carries some moral culpability.  If we're being relativist, we aren't using an absolute measure of injustice after all, so saying morality is relative doesn't get an individual out of culpability because it's the individual's own idea of injustice they'd have to be confronted with.  You can't pull the 'the individual might not find it injust' card if you're being a true relativist, because then you aren't talking about a situation governed by the resolution.

 

I don't think relativism/realism flows aff in a realistic round. Proving that an individual considers another individual's actions to be unjust doesn't suffice because it doesn't also prove that the individual is (in their own mind) culpable for inaction. I might think it's wrong to kill people but think it's okay to allow others to be killed. Situations like that would fall under the resolution, but relativism would say you have to agree with my opinion that inaction is okay. And most people seem to believe in the act-omission distinction, so assuming a whole rez debate if relativism is true then I think the affirmative loses.

Edited by Chaos

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Well...sort of and sort of not (it also depends on which B you're talking about).

 

Baudrillard was more along the lines of continuously investing in the system until it collapsed, but also had some parts that were along the lines of 'do nothing' or let the system take hold. For instance, in Symbolic Exchange and Death, the part near the beginning where's he like, we should let ourselves die could work (depending on the specific paragraph you pick though it could also be advocating for radical suicide but meh). 

 

Bifo is straight up just, we need to withdraw and let shit go to pieces on its own, though, which is called radical laxity (IIRC, it's something like that). Either way, it offers an interesting take on the neg. 

Would that make Bifo an accelerationist in the sense that the squo is sort of accelerating by itself? 

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