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About jamesalex87

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  • Birthday 04/20/1987

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  • Name
  • School
    Of the many insane at Olathe East
  • Biography
    My family seal is that of a baracuda eating a mountain lion.
  • Location
  • Interests
    Debate, guitar, music,
  • Occupation
    Border Deconstructer
  1. I am currently seeking employment at NFL nationals. My trip to Guatemala was cancelled last minute. I'm good for Judging, coaching, card cutting, energy drink supply guy, provider of whimsy. No housing or transportation needed. I'll take whatever I can get at this point. Will work for beer (can I say that on here?) and/or food. I debated for 4 years in high school and 5 years in college. I'm a 3 time NDT qualifier including an appearance in the outrounds of the NDT. I also have two consecutive octafinals appearances at CEDA nationals. John and I were consistently ranked in the top 25 teams in the country by the coaches poll. I ran the K but can help with anything. Did I mention I'll work for cheap? Please e-mail me at alex_mccoy at baylor dot edu or call me at eight one six eight zero three seven two two seven. Thanks, Alex McVey
  2. I am currently seeking employment at NFL nationals. My trip to Guatemala was cancelled last minute. I'm good for Judging, coaching, card cutting, energy drink supply guy, provider of whimsy. No housing or transportation needed. I'll take whatever I can get at this point. Will work for beer (can I say that on here?) and/or food. I debated for 4 years in high school and 5 years in college. I'm a 3 time NDT qualifier including an appearance in the outrounds of the NDT. I also have two consecutive octafinals appearances at CEDA nationals. John and I were consistently ranked in the top 25 teams in the country by the coaches poll. I ran the K but can help with anything. Did I mention I'll work for cheap? Please e-mail me at alex_mccoy at baylor dot edu or call me at eight one six eight zero three seven two two seven. Also, sorry to cross-x mods for quadruple posting. I'm just really wanting this to work out and this all happened very last minute. Thanks, Alex McVey
  3. I am currently seeking employment at NFL nationals. My trip to Guatemala was cancelled last minute. I'm good for Judging, coaching, card cutting, energy drink supply guy, provider of whimsy. No housing or transportation needed. I'll take whatever I can get at this point. Will work for beer (can I say that on here?) and/or food. I debated for 4 years in high school and 5 years in college. I'm a 3 time NDT qualifier including an appearance in the outrounds of the NDT. I also have two consecutive octafinals appearances at CEDA nationals. John and I were consistently ranked in the top 25 teams in the country by the coaches poll. I ran the K but can help with anything. Did I mention I'll work for cheap? Please e-mail me at alex_mccoy at baylor dot edu or call me at eight one six eight zero three seven two two seven.
  4. I'm looking forward to judging what I think will be my first kansas tournament judging since I graduated. The prodigal son returns? Or maybe just that son who comes back from college to eat all your leftovers.
  5. I think you are conflating the term deconstruction with other critical movements in thought to the point in which you obscure the real, important differences between these. Despite your backtracking, you did make an attempt to define with some certainty a group of philosophers and their thinking as "deconstructive", despite the fact that neither deconstructionists nor the philosophers themselves would every consider that attitude deconstruction. Certainly, post 68 a tremendous amount of scholars from a broad array of studies have taken up the challenge of thinking in some sense beyond the bounds of traditional western metaphysics and subjectivity. To call this movement in a general direction by thought "deconstruction" is simply not useful for helping us understand what these thinkers are saying, especially in relation to one another. You could be right that Agamben wouldn't be Agamben without deconstruction. However, he wouldn't be what he is without a broad variety of intellectual influences. He is certainly much more aligned with a tradition of classical philology and mysticism than with deconstruction. I also just don't think you are right about this claim. Agamben rejects the central thought of all deconstruction, which is that there is no voice before language which we can experience. In doing so, he bypasses the whole deconstructive project. Agamben starts at the logical conclusions of deconstruction and seeks to move beyond them. Agamben's gesturality is not a "deconstruction of the overdetermination of difference" as you choose to phrase it, but rather the overdetermining of the overdetermination of difference. To play or to profane is not to determine what use is excluded or left unsayable by the sacred norm, it is to PUT the sacred norm to a NEW use. You've ignored my argument that thinkers like agamben and baudrillard CAN'T be deconstructionists because they don't think there is an unsayable/unrepresentable. Why is it so important that you bunch these philosophers together? What intellectual value does this conflation have, besides pointing out the already obvious fact that all of these thinkers seek to problematize the modern western subject? it is more intellectually valuable, in my opinion, then, to think of these thinkers as largely separate from deconstructive thought, to point out the important divergences between them and the authors they get so easily bunched in with. It's hard enough for people writing in continental philosophy or postmodernism to avoid being lumped into one big mushy category of postmodern mumbo jumbo. We should be very precise about what we mean
  6. I'm not going to take up anything here except for this blip about Agamben. This is a misreading. Agamben is in no way a deconstructive thinker. He can't be because he doesn't presuppose the existence of language, like Derrida, who says that since language exists, then our task should be an infinite obligation to discover that which remains unsaid in language. Agamben doesn't believe that there is an unsayable, or maybe even better, Agamben's philosophy attempts to take deconstruction to the point of its own destruction by "saying the unsayable". Agamben attempts to correct what he perceives as an intellectual laziness amongst deconstructive thinkers who attempt to define and open up the unsayable or ineffable within thought and language. To accept that there is an unsayable within language that we obliged to hold to through deconstruction leaves the structure of signification firmly in place. This is Agamben explaining further on page 44 of Potentialities, "If the foundation is unsayable and irreducible, if it always already anticipates speaking beings, throwing them into history and epochal destiny, then a thought that records and shelters this presupposition seems ethically equivalent to one that fully experiences the violence and bottomlessness of its own destiny. It is hardly an accident, therefore, that an authoritative current of contemporary French thought posits language in the beginning and yet conceives of this dwelling in the arkhé according to the negative structure of writing and the gramma. There is no voice for language; rather, language is always already trace and infinite self-transcendence. In other words: language, which is in the beginning, is the nullification and deferral of itself, and the signifier is nothing other than the irreducible cipher of this ungroundedness. It is legitimate to ask oneself if the recognition of the presupposition of language that characterizes contemporary thought truly exhausts the task of philosophy. It could be said that here thought believes that its task consists simply in recognizing what constituted the most proper content of faith and revelation: the dwelling of the logos in the beginning. What theology proclaimed to be incomprehensible to reason is now recognized by reason as its presupposition. All comprehension is grounded in the incomprehensible. But does such a thought not obscure precisely what should be the philosophical task par excellence, that is, the elimination and "absolution" of presuppositions? Was philosophy not perhaps the discourse that wanted to free itself of all presuppositions, even the most universal presupposition, which is expressed in the formula "there is language"? Is philosophy not concerned precisely with comprehending the incomprehensible? The fact that current philosophy has abandoned this task may constitute its fundamental difficulty, condemning the handmaiden to a marriage with its theological master, even as the difficulty of faith coincides with its acceptance by reason. The abolition of the boundaries between faith and reason also marks their crisis, that is, their reciprocal judgment." It is clear here, that Agamben's concept of whatever being, a being beyond presupposition, could NEVER be thought of as a deconstructive concept. Whatever is not the same thing as the unsayable. Whatever is expressed or said as such. It is not the experience of the presupposition of language, it is the experience of language itself. So, the next time you want to talk shit about academic integrity over me using wikipedia to easily define a term for the sake of argument, you should probably do a bit more reading to find out whether you really know what you're talking about.
  7. Baudrillard is NOT a deconstructionist, and is could only be considered a postmodernist by those who are either misinterpreting his works (saying he rejects simulation / offers an act of resistance). We never seek to accept difference. Baudrillard not only accepts but embraces dualism to its fullest. Dualism and reversability are the fundamental structures of our symbolic universe. Good and evil, masculine and feminine, the self and the other, subject and object, are all at play with each other and are inherent in every symbolic interaction with the world. The fundamental problem with western thinking for so long has been that we assume that things can be reduced to one or the other: that I am a thinking subject who acts on a world of objects that I can produce, regulate, and manage. Also that I act on the world in an irreversible way - i/e my actions and thoughts determine the content of my subject, and it is this subjectivity which binds and makes me responsible to the social/historical status of humanity. This way of thinking is messed up: it denies the secret forces of play and destiny which are involved in all of our interactions. It forces us to engage in a tyranny of the self, in which we demand that we account for our thoughts and actions, even though, we don't think the world - the world thinks us. I think therefore I am cannot be true because I do not think because in no way can I realistically call my thoughts my own. We do not have control over the meaning of signs, of language, those crucial stepping stones supposed to bridge the gap between the alienated self and the world around it. But western thinking has told us that our minds have the capacity to overcome this alienation, that we can both use it to accurately describe situations and effectively proscribe solutions using these signs, if only we all agree on the terms. However, the inexpressible, (that which alienates us, the lack, difference, the margin, the gap, all of these terms could probably be appropriate, but I invite you to challenge me on this) is still there in every attempt to make the world expressible and exchangeable. This attempt to map our interactions out with the world into an irreversible human story of progress will only cause the world to react virally. Like a virus that mutates and becomes worse as the antivirus becomes more effective, our world reacts to our attempts to control it with signs and symbols. America's symbolic debt was repaid on September 11th. A country's best efforts to create a global order of security free market exchange resulted in individuals seeking a singular event, a symbolic, seemingly political gesture whose meaning was obviously beyond expression. This singularity represents the fatal strategy that Baudrilard says is always at play in the world. It is a strategy, because by the introduction of a sign which denies all definite meaning, the system has no choice but to overreact with its attempts to give meaning and determine the immediate, historical, and political significance of the event, its irreversible history. In doing so, it has fought two wars which both have shown the world that U.S. promises of "democracy", and "anti-terrorism", are really signs which have lost all reference to the real, anti-democratic, terroristic policies of the U.S. By affirming, rather than rejecting, the vague sign or simulation of "Terrorism", terrorism itself has invited an act of hypersimulation. All situations, all power relations, all symbolic interactions, operate on those basic principles, of duality and reversability. Good and evil are reversible, democracy and terrorism, subject and object, even life and death. Debate is a perfect example - Debate is a forum that is supposed to use advanced logical reasoning and archiving of arguments to teach young adults how to become better, more effectively communicating subjects who will help make the world a better place, or at least use their skills to promote their own livelyhood. However, debate's own logical conclusion is today's manifestation of hyper technical super fast policy debates in which we knowingly suspend most of the rules of reality for the sake of an absurd game. This game, however, is reaching the point of terminal velocity, exiting the orbit of policymaking, and of subjectivity in which we feel tied to the truth of our political games. Debate, an activity meant to teach us how to be better subjects, when taken to its own logical conclusion, is producing a group of thinkers who are masterfully skilled at evading this subjectivity at every point. Think about it. Debate programs, because of the apparent value of testing argument in a free, open forum, are given the capacity to talk about pretty much whatever they want in any given round. That is, as long as they keep up an appearance or simulation of being a productive and responsible educational organization. Why should we reject those simulations? We shouldn't. What we should reject are those who try to return truth to debate. On the symbolic level, according to the sign of the resolution, the sign of the flow, we can win a debate round like we would win a card game. Think of it like this - your best regulations tank bizcon link is just like having three jacks in a poker hand. But you find out that the aff has a more specific link turn scenario, like three queens. Aff wins. But if you have defense to the 1AC advantages, or a CP that solves the case, you have an extra pair and made your boat. Except with debate I am granted free play not with simple number/symbol cards, but with my own political subjectivity. This freedom is not a new subjectivity, but rather an experience of my own lack of political subjectivity through a hypsersimulation of political subjectivity. Our strategy seduces debate - it brings out its hidden meaning which is an undoing of its original intended meaning. It does so, however, merely by affirming the symbols of debate rather than resisting them. I think its just stunning how effectively your post presents the best summation of the current challenge facing critical thought in debate in the form of a rule followed by a question: "The only way for deconstrutive thoughts to "win" is perhaps to deconstruct the debate itself. Or can there be a genuinely deconstructive debate that stays within the structure?" We would argue that our framework argument does both. What does it mean to deconstruct the debate itself. I'm not much of a deconstructionist, so I stole this from wikipedia, feel free to correct me or supplement this definition of deconstruction: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deconstruction Deconstruction is a term in contemporary philosophy, literary criticism, and the social sciences, denoting a process by which the texts and languages of Western philosophy (in particular) appear to shift and complicate in meaning when read in light of the assumptions and absences they reveal within themselves. Our framework argument undeniably does this. It shows the way that debate's meaning or purpose changes and shifts, and it does this by using the very language, assumptions, and techniques that were supposed to lead us to debate's proper, purposeful ends. Our framework also meets the second criteria of your challenge, which is to stay within the dualistic structure of debate. The prevalence of S&M in today's world of extreme sexual liberation should make very clear one fundamental, unchangeable human rule, that where humans are freed from rules and constraints, they make up new ones. By affirming the plan in a game between abstracted policymakers, by affirming the traditional role and apparent rule of the resolution, (which we all know is just a simulation of a rule), we find ourselves liberated from a more insidious rule - that we must be responsible for ourselves. However, given what i know about Baudrillard, I now find myself in a sticky position, theoretically. Baudrillard is NOT a deconstructionist, precisely because of the constraint that you said MUST be true and in saying so very wisely contained your own proposition in the form of an unanswerable question. Baudrillard affirms dualism. He affirms structure. He affirms polarity. He believes in exclusion, alienation. Deconstruction, by its very nature, is to take systems of language and thought and to rationally look at the text to find a way in which a previously undisclosed meaning or remainder presents itself. Derrida affirms the impossibility of this task. An infinite obligation to difference is one that constantly shows the margin, that never stops grasping at the remainder. This is why for debate it is impossible for us to really deconstruct, because a deconstructionist wouldn't choose one side or the other without her deconstructionist impulses causing her to see the infinite remainder obscured by the totality of the forced decision. This is also why deconstruction fails to challenge the systems of thought it criticizes. Deconstruction is an attempt to more carefully grant meaning to the discursive world. Deconstruction as a system of thought leaves intact the symbolic coordinates of reality that are at the heart of the western metaphysical tradition that the deconstructionists seek to distance themselves from. Deconstruction assumes that the subject has enough mastery over language, and therefore, the social world, to continuously produce a better interpretation, to produce a new way to deconstruct specific social artifacts. It goes even further to say that this task of interpretation and deconstruction may help us on the path to ethics, by continuously shifting a frame to one that holds more true to a cosmopolitan of a community of otherness, an exchange with difference, a face to face encounter, etc... This simply repeats western metaphysics mistake of trying to use language to overcome alienation rather than experience alienation and be happy about our alienation. It is why Derrida seems so afraid of his own language at times. Deconstruction can never pose a challenge to the hegemonic systems of thought that it seeks to criticize, because the state and capitalism now encourage deconstruction of all social norms. Marketplaces proliferate in a way that manufactures difference, each new difference is a new market, a potential product. What remains consistent in both capitalism, state power, and deconstruction, is the need for subjects to keep believing that they are subjects who are responsible for a better, richer, more ethical, more appropriate life. Appropriate here must always mean appropriation, which is to take an event and give it an irreversible meaning. Go ahead and label this your co option argument. Now label this the alt no solvo/backlash turn - The reason why deconstruction will never work is that once it admits to operating on the same basic logic and metaphysical structure as the systems of capitalism and the state, the belief that the symbolic gives access to the real, those systems will either agree to the criticism and co-opt it, as explained above, or alternatively, they will out-produce the deconstructionists. Certainly the state and capitalism, with their reliance on law and money which are themselves symbolic systems that have managed to guide the lives of humanity for ages, are more skilled at determining and convincing people what is and isn't real. Which is why producing a new interpretation, trying to convince people of a new deconstructive reality you discovered in your infinite wrangling with the margins of some obscure text is pointless. It is much better to let people believe the reality they believe in so much that it can no longer be real, it is realer than real. This is what our FW argument does to debate. I hope this illuminates a lot of questions, and makes some areas more obscured, demanding further investigation
  8. Obie and I were having a conversation about this the other day why when he judges he doesn't want people to run Baudrillard in front of him because they will probably wind up and say something like, his example was, reject simulations / simulations bad. No. This is not baudrillard's argument. Just because he criticizes those simulations does NOT make them bad. A strategy of seduction of simulations and images rather than production of simulations and images affirms simulation to the point of its own undoing. Baudrillard never advocates rejection or denial of the things he criticizes. In terms of your hyper real and real talk, I don't find it very useful. What baudrillard describes as his strategy for the masses is one of hypersimulation. Images and simulations have accumulated to the point that their connection to any possible referent is dissolving. We are literally being freed from the confines of reality. Why would we want to resist that? Let's instead carry it to its completion, push the system of simulation to its own suicide. Policy debate is one way of doing that, according to our FW argument.
  9. i go to Baylor. I didn't write this argument, but ran it a bunch this year, and have read the source material it is from. I'm not as good on Baudrillard as those who wrote the file, but they don't ever get on here. The framework argument we make on the affirmative is a policymaking good framework argument that we use only against critiques. It is an answer to any link that says that the 1AC stands for any sort of political subjectivity or any alternatives that tie the judge space to subjectivity. Baudrillard says that the social has disappeared into the masses. The masses, Baudrillard's term for describing the citizenry of modern democracies, have become indifferent to political representation. Information is disseminated and presented to the masses in a way that alienates them from any experience of politics, allowing them to consume the signs without any direct connection of power. Discursive representations of power, just like discursive representations of resistance, are all capable of being simply consumed by the masses. The way modern power functions (be it through the state, capitalism, masculinity, etc...), is not by a mobilization of specific discourses of power (ANSWERING THE LINK ARGUMENT), but rather the illusion or false belief that those discourses have a social implication. What liberates us from all power, debt, guilt, and responsibility, is a denial of the subjectivity involved in discourse. It is better to be oppressed by others than by the self. The biggest threat to power is that humanity would not want it. We should never be concerned that what we say in the debate round has to mean one thing or the other, that it has to be true, politically correct, or represent a sound ethics or methodology, that we have to positively effect the world. We know that's not what debate is about. Debate is a game, plain and simple, and we should decline our will, our subjectivity, to the rules of debate, the resolution, policymaking, etc... In doing so, we are applying Baudrillard's fatal strategy to the debate game. Baudrillard takes systems of thought and adopts them, employs their rules and their logic in order to take each system to its own logical conclusion, which is also each system's suicide or destruction. By using the rational, objective, games playing system known as policy debate, we are able to play with political representations without believing any of the political implications that they have. In other words, K teams will say that that the aff's securitization / management / policy discourse / insert link here is bad because it affects the way we as individuals or students approach the world. The state and the business interests it protects have a monopoly on symbolic or discursive power. Any alternative that admits to the foundational principle of western society, that we are individuals who are tied to our discourse which determines our place in history, invites these systems of thought to use its monopoly on discursive power to either destroy or coopt these acts of discursive or intellectual resistance. However, by using those representations in a game, you free them from their ability to be politically powerful or to mobilize you politically. are freed from the tyranny of the self which says we have to be responsible political subjects, which is the urge that organizes humanity in all sorts of hegemonic ways, turning your k alt. The framework is hard to do, because to generate specific points of offense you need to know how baudrilard answers specific thinkers, specific strategies, specific schools of thoughts. Basically, you need to have a vast library of Baudrillard at your disposal to be really good. However, I encourage you to get on opencaselist.wikispaces.com and look up Baylor LT and Baylor MR. Our Syria affs have the baudrillard framework. The NDT BAYLOR MR page should have an example of our 2AC deployment of this argument in a few rounds.
  10. jamesalex87


    Literally. Lots and lots of smoke.
  11. jamesalex87


    If anyone I coach loses to a grammar good argument, there was little hope for them to begin with. Terry Schiavo could beat down the spell yo shit right CP if I was coaching her. It's only partially coincidental that Cook looks and sounds a bit like her when he debates. Hott burn though on the typo! Glad your robot cyborg brain was able to catch those little details. I'm actually a little amazed that you even know of the spell the plan correctly CP, given as how it wasn't in any college team's nietzsche file last year. Oh well, I guess it's something else john could run that he doesn't need any cards for. Alright folks, in all honestly, Cook's a good kid. I'm sure he'd do you great as a coach. I'm sure I would, too. I'm sure there are more than one team that needs a coach in texas, and i'm sure there's a team that needs more than one coach. So you should probably hire both of us. Just hire me first. haha.
  12. jamesalex87


    you should hire the master before the padowan. I'm a junior on this kids team who owns his soul and you should hire me long before you hire him. JAMESALEX87@AOL.COM Better work, more reliable. I don't even know if this kid's old enough to drive himself to tournaments yet. Plus unless you want to talk about transexual cyborgs you probably won't want his coaching advice.
  13. Let me hype up my school for a bit. Everyone who's serious about debating in college should give good consideration to Baylor University. Over the past 4 years, 3 of the 8 full tuition scholarship debaters have come from Kansas (Including John Cook, who will be joining us in the fall). We are a nationally competitive team. Everybody on the team travels consistently. The University takes great care of the debate team financially, and we receive a ton of support from the faculty here. We have two amazing head coaches, Dr. Matt Gerber and (newly hired) Dr. Scott Varda, plus a host of assistants to ensure that everyone on the team receives coaching. Aside from all of the great things about the institution, the people here are awesome, intelligent, and strive to win big. Keep us in mind. Every year we have two full tuition scholarships (this is pretty bank considering that Baylor is a private school with tuition coming in at over 20k a year), plus a host of other smaller scholarships that can combine with the plethora of academic scholarships the university gives out. For more information, go to http://www.baylordebate.com or contact matt_gerber@baylor.edu or alex_mccoy@baylor.edu Sic Em Bears
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