Dear CXers, I am new to this website, and I am slowly learning the process of posting and blogging, so bear with me. My blog will be full of questions about evidence, the topic, tournaments, UIL, and other miscellaneous subjects. A myriad of discussion will occur here regarding these topics as well, and I hope this will be an easier, less crowded version of the forums-- which can be quite daunting due to the thousands of users posting! To start off my new blog, I'll reveal just a little information for all of you debaters out there-- I will be a junior in Texas this year, and both my partner and I have been debating since freshman year. My name is not really Sally Bowen, it is a combination of my partner's and my name. We are both girls. She does not have a cross-x account, and like I said, I recently created one amidst my summer boredom and passion for Cross Examination debate. We have been to state one time, but we did not do as well as we hoped-- so we are looking for help from all you other intelligent debators! I will be attending a camp this summer as well, so evidence exchange might be a great idea. Any other questions for me you can post as a comment, and I'll most likely answer. Be warned, while I strive to be a nice person (I am a Christian), I can be very sassy! Now on to more serious matters...let's discuss this years topic dealing with space exploration! I feel like counter plans and Kritiks will be rampant this year, due to the multitude of cases possible, and therefore lack of on-case arguments. Topicality will also play a major role, especially due to the ambiguity of space exploration! What a far-out topic...I wonder how much the recent NASA developments will shape the debate? No more shuttles?! I also am curious about the new space companies trying to take over NASA-- could they be possible DAs or CP agents? What are your thoughts about these developments? As far as affirmative goes, I find the excitement pretty inspiring this year. It kind of depends how you interpret the words of the resolution-- with the correct definitions, and beast argumentation skills, you could write some pretty squirrly cases and get away with it. For example, what about a case that merely develops better telescopes that are stationed on earth, but provide better pictures and information beyond the Earth's mesosphere? I wouldn't be so keen to try something like that, but I wonder if a judge would buy it? If you found a great definition of exploration that said it was the study of something, I feel like you could get by with it incredibly well, especially with the economy in such a state of distress, Obama clearly not giving the space program prominence, let alone the funds they need, and the status quo which leans more against space exploration. However, cooler case ideas would be to physically explore space, though the space agreements and space laws definitely suck a lot of the fun out of it. I'm sure that the DAs and impacts this year are going to be ridiculously crazy...the 2012 end of the world theory, alien invasions, space wars, etc. This topic will definitely be interesting, and what a cool year to be debating it in! I'm sure that the preparation this year will be vigorous, as there are so many different affirmative cases that could be developed, and lots of negative evidence to be written due to space being made up of "what ifs" and "unknowns." I think that a good, solid knowledge of space history would be beneficial for debating this year because the best debators are ones who can set their evidence aside and just talk to the judge-- as long as they know what they are saying and are correct in the knowledge, of course. I hate when people are like "this won't work because it's empirically denied." Really? Tell my why! I think that knowing previous episodes with space exploration and making timelines of important events will really help this year. Does anyone else have ideas about preparation for this years topic? Okay, well I think I have babbled long enough about the plethora of questions the resolution poses, and I've probably managed to bore many, many people in the process. Anyways, if you have any thoughts about the topic, evidence to share, ideas, or want to refute any of mine, just leave me a comment Happy debating!