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Everything posted by Chaos

  1. Post a new thread if and when an Android version comes out, please.
  2. That sounds unlikely depending on what you mean, Canada's immigration system is rigidly merit-based. See here. They have an election coming up next year, but I haven't heard anything about any candidates wanting to change the system. Edit: Article in The Atlantic on the populist push for Canada to deport more people, might have election relevance: https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/05/theres-a-perception-that-canada-is-being-invaded/561032/. The link to the World Values Survey at the end might work for your purposes.
  3. Anyone have any published articles or written theory blocks about this phenomena? It might be more of a problem in LD, not sure. I feel like I've seen blocks on this in framework files in the past, but can't find any at the moment. Relatedly, when I'm writing K blocks I keep having this urge to throw an independent voter claim on every other sub-argument. I'm pretty sure that's abusive and am looking for an argument to help me restrain my cheating urges. How will/do people punish this? It's sort of a no-risk move, sans theory.
  4. Wow, good observation. I kind of feel like people will just ignore this grammatical point and interpret the word substantially as referring to the number of immigrants, though. Winning that grammar matters is hard - grammar is key to the predictability of the interpretation, but having a less predictable interpretation in exchange for a better limited topic seems like a good trade. I've never come across any other convincing arguments as to why grammar matters as a standard.
  5. I actually had that in mind. My motivation was a desire to detect if it's possible judges are voting for arguments from certain camps more often than they should, all other factors considered. Or, relatedly, choosing to inflate speaker points. A firm determination of bias from individual judges is probably beyond the level of confidence the data can offer, but it's hard not to be interested in the possibility. I guess knowing that judge bias exists won't really do anything to curtail it, though, and you're right that such tools could be used to make things worse, so maybe investigating further would be a bad idea. On the other hand, I don't know how much room is left for technical innovations to make polarization worse. At least this way, knowledge about judge biases would be more accessible for everyone, and less reliant on institutional experience. Regardless of whether or not building such tools is a good idea, I hope Hanes will chime in with his thoughts on the technical feasibility of the idea, and push back against any mistakes I might be making. I don't know that MPJ is a major cause of polarization. I get that there are arguments for that position, but feel like polarization would have happened regardless. Polarization is almost the inevitable consequence of 1. People with diverse beliefs thinking that debate has more significance than just a game and 2. Specialization resulting in more competitive arguments than those resulting from cross-pollination across camps.
  6. I don't actually know what I'm talking about. Most of my knowledge of statistics is through feel and very casual self-study, so probably more than half of it's wrong. I was sort of hoping that by asking you an open-ended question, I'd provoke some discussion that would reveal something useful to me. Probably was a little too vague though, earlier. I was thinking about possibly detecting judge biases against certain teams or argument styles. I think, in order to do that, you'd want to have a measurement of team similarity, which you could get by comparing judges' decisions to the predicted decisions, and then observing which teams judges tended to rate better or worse than expected. Call doing better than expected a bonus and doing worse than expected a detriment. If the bonuses and detriments of teams A, B, and C are highly correlated among all judges, then teams A, B, and C are highly similar. You could probably do something similar to develop a measurement of judge similarity. If the bonuses and detriments of judges A, B, and C are highly correlated for various teams, then judges A, B, and C are highly similar. It might be that we can't get access to both a good measure of judge similarity and a good measure of team similarity, though, and that these would confound each other. Not really sure. If this idea worked out, potentially, debaters could look at teams similar in style to them who do better than expected with judges of certain types, as a basis for figuring out how to better adapt. I guess you don't really need the logit score for this, and could just use the season's win-loss record, but incorporating the additional information about speaker points and opponent strength seems useful. Also, I kind of vaguely feel like since judges are not randomly assigned to rounds this might complicate things somehow, making the logit score a better tool than just win/loss records or speaker points for grounding a similarity score in, but I can't articulate why and it could be nonsense. Both in the sense that judges aren't randomly assigned to K vs policy debates due to pref sheets, and in the sense that experienced judges are going to judge more rounds late in the tournament. I feel like I might be reinventing, sloppily, concepts that sports statisticians have already mastered. This looks relevant, but debate doesn't have the kind of granular data sports do, so maybe that research won't be helpful.
  7. I think going to court with Evazon related claims could be a bad idea. It seems unlikely that selling files which give limited access to paywalled articles would be considered to fall under fair use.
  8. If anyone cares, I did the math on this at a tournament a few weeks ago and found it interesting. My naive estimate was that the number of possibilities would be X factorial where X is the number of planks, but that's an overestimate because permutations are sensitive to the ordering of groups. Strictly speaking, we're interested in combinations. It turns out that the number of distinct options available if there's, say, a five plank counterplan corresponds to 5 pick X, where X is every integer from 0 to 5. In other words, you add the number of options for 5 pick 0, 5 pick 1, 5 pick 2, 5 pick 3, 5 pick 4, and 5 pick 5. The equation for Y pick X is (Ignore the second line, it's just an example.) Consequently, if there are five planks, that means there are 1+5+10+10+5+1=32 possible worlds the negative can go for, assuming no other conditional options in the round. For four planks, there are 1+4+6+4+1=16. For three planks, there are 8 worlds. For two planks, 4. It turns out that this corresponds to adding up the different rows of Pascal's triangle, which was pretty unexpected. The conclusion is that 2 plank counterplans where each plank can be kicked probably aren't that abusive, but 3 plank counterplans or more have a lot of potential to be. (Obviously, it's not like the negative's likely to have a strategy that depends on some precise combination of planks, so this doesn't necessarily matter too much, but it's a nice way to illustrate the worst-case potential of the problem involved.)
  9. Anyone got a copy of the K of the Politics DA from like a decade or two ago? I remember seeing in like 2009 a fairly hefty PDF put out by UTNIF or somebody, and the file was already fairly old at that point. There have been some articles recently about how people should just ignore short term political news or not pay attention to Trump's antics and I feel like it might be possible to combine the old arguments with the new into something viable. Given that a high percentage of cards read on the politics DA are from random bloggers, the argument is probably stronger in today's media environment than it was formerly.
  10. Card for reference: Kappeler 95 (Susanne, Associate Professor at Al-Akhawayn University, The Will to Violence: The politics of personal behavior, Pg.10-11) Yet our insight that indeed we are not responsible for the decisions of a Serbian general or a Croatian president tends to mislead us into thinking that therefore we have no responsibility at all, not even for forming our own judgment, and thus into underrating the responsibility we do have within our own sphere of action. In particular, it seems to absolve us from having to try to see any relation between our own actions and those events, or to recognize the connections between those political decisions and our own personal decisions. It not only shows that we participate in what Beck calls ‘organized irresponsibility’, upholding the apparent lack of connection between bureaucratically, institutionally, nationally, and also individually organized separate competences. It also proves the phenomenal and unquestioned alliance of our personal thinking with the thinking of the major power mongers. For we tend to think that we cannot ‘do’ anything, say, about a war, because we deem ourselves to be in the wrong situation because we are not where the major decisions are made. Which is why many of those not yet entirely disillusioned with politics tend to engage in a form of mental deputy politics, in the style of ‘what would I do if I were the general, the prime minister, the president, the foreign minister or the minister of defense?’ Since we seem to regard their mega spheres of action as the only worthwhile and truly effective ones, and since our political analyses tend to dwell there first of all, any question of what I would do if I were indeed myself tends to peter out in the comparative insignificance of having what is perceived as ‘virtually no possibilities’: what I could do seems petty and futile. For my own action I obviously desire the range of action of a general, a prime minister, or a General Secretary of the UN – finding expression in ever more prevalent formulations like ‘I want to stop this war’, ‘I want military intervention’, ‘I want to stop this backlash’, or ‘I want a moral revolution. ‘We are this war’, however, even if we do not command the troops or participate in co-called peace talks, namely as Drakulic says, in our non-comprehension’: our willed refusal to feel responsible for our own thinking and for working out our own understanding, preferring innocently to drift along the ideological current of prefabricated arguments or less than innocently taking advantage of the advantages these offer. And we ‘are’ the war in our ‘unconscious cruelty towards you’, our tolerance of the ‘fact that you have a yellow form for refugees and I don’t’- our readiness, in other words, to build identities, one for ourselves and one for refugees, one of our own and one for the ‘others.’ We share in the responsibility for this war and its violence in the way we let them grow inside us, that is, in the way we shape ‘our feelings, our relationships, our values’ according to the structures and the values of war and violence.
  11. Anyone have access to the full text of Kappeller 95 (preferably in a form I can copy and paste from)? If not, does anyone have the card that says Kappeller concludes affirmative? I'd prefer the original source in its entirety, but will take what I can get.
  12. I agree that everything is ultimately an opportunity cost DA, but I choose to assign the label "fiat" to endorsing one particular opportunity out of all the ones available. I'm just going to stop arguing now, because I feel like we're agreed on as much as we can. Thanks for the responses, it's nice to have an excuse to refresh my understanding of these ideas.
  13. In the least sarcastic way possible, does that mean you think Counterplans don't utilize fiat either?
  14. Sorry, there are really two different debates here. I was not asking about the "mass movement" interpretation. I meant, why use this framing in which judges don't vote for the negative's alternative but instead simply abstain from voting for the affirmative in the presence of assumptions which are worse than the alternative? To me, it comes across as just a really convoluted way of expressing the same exact idea while trying to avoid the word "fiat".
  15. Why is this interpretation of Kritiks better than the interpretation that says Kritiks use fiat? Also, if Kritiks are just pointing out incorrect assumptions and providing better ones, then why isn't it a voting issue if I point out that my opponents' analysis of the economy relies on an incorrect assumption, and then provide a better one?
  16. So if the status quo links to the K, why vote negative? Why read an alternative at all?
  17. In my opinion, /r/policydebate is a better place for people to migrate to than the Discord channel. On the Discord, comments can go by very fast, and are very difficult, realistically impossible, to recover once overlooked. That has two negative implications. First, there's no permanent store of knowledge that can be built up over time. Second, people have to compete with one another more intensely for attention. This encourages blippy and memeish discussion. The Discord is very useful for live debates. In all other respects, the subreddit is as good or better.
  18. The judge is the fulcrum on which the round turns. All opportunity costs discussed should ultimately be considered in terms of the ballot, because that's the only decision made as a result of anyone's advocacy. Debaters can argue for different roles for the judge to inhabit - maybe the judge should act like a policymaker, maybe the judge should evaluate the theoretical legitimacy of arguments made in round, or maybe the judge should assess the legitimacy of the affirmative's assumptions. But, a priori, all roles are on the table, and all of them revolve around the question of what the judge should do with the ballot. Calling this a bad model of debate is to call all possible debate bad. Implicitly, if you are reading an argument intended to change the judge's decision, you are making an argument about the opportunity cost of the ballot, though perhaps only within some sort of limited scope. Your interpretation of that scope means that judges should allow policy teams to fiat the sort of policy changes that could only result from major social change, but shouldn't let K teams fiat major social change itself. That feels arbitrary, to me. All the justifications that we use to say that it's good for teams to learn about policy changes would also work as justifications that it's good for teams to learn about social changes. Carving out a slice of the space of possible changes to the world and declaring it off limits for the debaters to evaluate seems unnatural. If it's germane to the round, any advocacy the negative comes up with should be considered sufficiently predictable, in my book. I don't mind if you disagree with this, as a framework argument. But there's at least a coherent understanding of debate in which it's not true that the only things the judge is allowed to evaluate are the world of the plan, the world of the status quo, the world of the USFG oriented counterplan, theory arguments, and the ethical assumptions of the 1AC. It's at least possible that someone could think fiat should be extended to let the negative test the policymaking methods endorsed by the affirmative in comparison to some kind of endorsed social movement. So as a description of how debate and Kritik must function, your answer is inadequate. Even if your model of debate is the ideal one, people sometimes read arguments that don't fall into that ideal. It is not the case that people only ever read arguments that consider opportunity costs in terms of the USFG. I don't see how it can possibly make sense to think about the alternative "doing something" and not call that thinking an instance of fiat. "Fiat" means "let it be so". If the judge votes for the alternative, saying "let it be so" that we rethink capitalism, do nothing, or embrace the inevitability of death, then they are fiating the alternative. To say that the judge doesn't utilize fiat is to say that the judge doesn't mentally simulate the implications of believing in or endorsing one team's arguments over another's. There's no way to test whether or not a set of assumptions is bad without performing such mental simulations.
  19. No, decolonizing the mind is still a legitimate alternative. It's a proposed action or way of thinking that is being endorsed. I actually can't think of any common K alternatives that wouldn't meet my interpretation.
  20. The idea is that if we're saying debate is valuable because it educates debaters about how to be effective policy advocates, it makes just as much sense to say debate is valuable because it educates debaters about how to be effective activists or advocates for social change. There is a coherent agent whose opportunity costs are being considered: the people in round. They have the choice to go work on government policy or vote, which is why fiating government policy changes can be valuable for their education. They also have the choice to attend certain rallies or advocate for certain ideas, which is why fiating certain social changes can be valuable for their education. But they don't have the choice to suddenly convince everyone in the world to change their mind on an issue, nor can they achieve anything remotely resembling that, so the scope of fiat remains bounded. If the alternative is a perspective and not an advocacy, it makes no sense to say that alternatives can be conditional, or even to talk of alternatives solving for the link and status quo. "We're kicking the alternative - communism is not a real idea" would be an incredibly garbage argument. "Alt solves case" claims would be wrong on face - the existence of an idea doesn't do anything to the real world. Alternatives should be thought of as advocacies capable of generating uniqueness for the impacts of the Kritik. Without such uniqueness, Kritiks don't matter (sans ethics claims that say consequentialism is wrong). It doesn't make sense to say that the affirmative should lose because their assumptions destroy all value to life if such assumptions are inevitably going to be highly prevalent (except as a reason to vote neg on presumption).
  21. Hang on, I think I see what's going on here. Traditionally, debaters are taught that plans and counterplans use fiat while Kritiks don't. This is an oversimplification. Kritiks do use fiat, in the sense that they don't represent an actual action or belief genuinely adopted by the judge, but rather are a hypothetical that the judge pretends to endorse for the sake of the round. However, although they use fiat, generally Kritiks make less use of fiat than the affirmative plan does or a negative counterplan would, in the sense that they only ask one hypothetical of the judge. They ask that the judge pretend to endorse the best arguments made in the round, but do not ask that the judge pretend their decision influences real world policymakers. In contrast, teams reading traditional policy arguments ask for a double suspension of disbelief. This is often pointed out by K teams and used as a reason to ignore the advantages of the plan. Sometimes, K teams even argue that the affirmative's utilization of policy-making fiat is itself morally wrong and a reason to vote for the alternative. While this is true of some Kritiks, it needn't be true of all of them. If, for framework reasons, teams are allowed to imagine that the judge voting affirmative or negative would change government policy, then it seems reasonable to suppose that teams should also be allowed to imagine that the judge voting affirmative or negative could result in some kind of equivalent in scope mass activism. The key, though, is that teams who want to read Kritiks utilizing such alternatives must lose access to framework arguments suggesting that they promote a more realistic form of education than the affirmative. Probably, then, it's legitimate to read Ks with mass movement alternatives, but only if you let the affirmative weigh case. "Broad mindset changes" are still not legitimate even within this understanding, though, because it's not a level playing field if negative fiat can be so much more powerful than affirmative fiat. The negative gets access to hypotheticals that are roughly as demanding as the hypotheticals demanded by the affirmative. They don't get access to any hypotheticals demanded whatsoever.
  22. I don't understand the difference between selecting the best competitive option to fiat into existence and selecting the best set of assumptions to utilize. A best assumption is just an option that happens to be highly competitive. (Is our underlying point of disagreement that you think fiat must be understood in terms of policy advocacy? I don't agree with that.) Or are you saying that you think alternatives are performative, and exist in the round regardless of whether or not the judge chooses to endorse them? Doesn't that imply that reading Kritiks conditionally is illegitimate? I'm just not understanding the distinction you're making.
  23. If there's no reason we "should" do the alternative, aff wins. That the negative's moral claims are couched in implicit terms doesn't mean they aren't there. Nah, you can still test the assumptions or wording of the 1AC with a Kritik. The fact that we're comparing future worlds doesn't mean we're comparing only the world of the plan vs the world of the alternative. It means we're comparing the world of the 1AC's assumptions or method or discourse with the world of the negative's assumptions or methods or discourse. NoNegFiat, I don't think negatives should be allowed to fiat broad mindset changes, and haven't ever heard anyone arguing they have that right. If they did, they'd win every round by fiating universal pacifism and beneficence.
  24. Disagree that the alternative isn't about fiat. "Should" statements and moral endorsements are the underlying rationale for fiat. You can't make should statements without imagining possible future worlds. It's also hard to square the notion that alternatives don't use fiat with the notion that judges shouldn't intervene in rounds - if voting for the alternative means that the alternative actually happens, then the stakes are really high and judges with self-consistent beliefs should be intervening left and right.
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