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JeanLucPicard

researching solvency cards (specifically alts)

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My team's decided that its current cap alt has gotten old and needs a fresh card, so it has asked me to cut the new cap alt. However, I haven't had much experience in cutting solvency cards before (I have general experience with research, however). What constitutes a 'good' alt, and what constitutes a 'bad' alt?

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A "good" alternative card:

-provides details about what should be done, who should do it, and how, when, where, and why they should do it.

-is generally from a qualified source writing authoritatively on the topic you're criticizing.

-has built-in answers to common objections (won't solve, X is inevitable, alternative leaves behind X group, causes a war).

-has a way to solve the Affirmative (maybe socialism is a "better" model of education and would solve the need for economically productive citizens to begin with).

-has build-in reasons that it's mutually exclusive with (the state, reform-ism, the things it criticizes).

-solves the link/impact arguments you plan to make.

 

If you're looking for something specific to education, I'd recommend critical pedagogy by Giroux. Lots of stuff about education as an anti-capitalist space.

 

If it's a broader "cap sucks, let's do X instead" alternative, a lot of people run [Communist revolution], [socialism], [historical materialism], [local alternatives].

 

A "bad" alternative card would either be a bad card in general (lack of warrants, qualifications, or specificity) or it would be a solution that fails to meet a lot of criteria I mentioned above. For example, if the alternative is to "reject capitalism," you're probably going to lose on the permutation because you haven't crafted a solution in a nuanced enough way to have a strategic reason why the plan itself is bad just for existing within a structure of capitalism. If your alternative is "reject the Affirmative," even worse - rejecting "USFG should fund STEM education" is definitely not going to solve your link arguments about how America is driven and governed by corporatism and industry.

 

Best of luck.

 

edit: and, don't feel like presenting a "bad" alternative is going to upset your team-mates - if they want something specific, they should say so. You could read some literature on some of the things I mentioned or look through neoliberalism files on OpenEvidence to get a few suggestions, then get some feedback from your team before you launch into a 20-card alternative section of a file.

Edited by TheSnowball

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It depends on what aff you're hitting - your alt should be set up to be exclusive and net-better than the aff. If you're hitting a K Aff, reading an alt that calls for violent revolution is potentially more aligned with what their literature says than, say, an alt that slowly reforms existing structures. The same goes for a policy aff. If you read a reform alt vs. a warming aff, you'll probably lose to the perm, but if you call for a revolution, or choose to center the round on competing pedagogical approaches (ie Giroux/Critical Pedagogy alts) then you're in a better spot.

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I think Kyler and Snowball answered this pretty well- I will only add that reject style alts (Johnston and the Herod card above) are not really convincing because a) there's no end to what we are and aren't rejecting if we have to evaluate on a case-by-case basis B) the aff can give convincing perm speeches by saying that they aren't capitalist and are thus in line with the alt c) these cards are also old which sounds like a problem you are trying to solve and also since they are from 2004, an aff team can say the alt fails in round b/c empirically nothing has changed in the 13 years of debate rounds the alt has been read

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