[eDebate] Energy Topic - BORING - A Challenge to Debate a New Area (AT JGreen, Whitmore)
jfp0001 at unt.edu
Tue Apr 13 14:57:48 CDT 2004
While I also have much love ? I totally disagree with you on this one.
I?ll try to answer some of the big arguments you make.
You say that these debates are old, they?ve been had before, Wake won the NDT on
the 97 environment topic, and all we want are backfile debates.
The difference between where you are speaking from and where I am speaking from
is that you debated on the previous environment topic. A large majority of
those currently in college debate (see previous post about most hs renewable
energy debaters are no longer involved) have never debated anything close to
energy policy. The incoming first years have seen: privacy, mental health care,
oceans, and WMD. The people that debated the high school renewable energy topic
are mostly gone, as you had to be a first year on that to be a senior on this.
And even then ? people?s first year in debate in high school doesn?t get in
depth as a year on a college topic would. Just because you and a few others
were able to debate this before does not mean that the newer debaters should be
denied opportunity to engage such a fun and rich topic.
Past topic areas did not cover this area in depth. Forget the fact that Kyoto
was by far the least run AFF on the treaties topic, and most people got to
debate it like two or three times. Kyoto did not even scratch the surface of
what an energy topic now has to offer. A large problem with Kyoto was its lack
of a means to get big nations like the U.S. to commit to emissions reductions.
A ?US should reduce its fossil fuel consumption? topic would bypass that
entirely. Kyoto also got caught up in the US-EU relations drama, treaties
drama, and other problems with its lack of enforcement etc that watered it down.
Aside from Wake?s Climate AFF at the NDT I don?t remember anyone running a big
One team ran a warming renewables AFF on Indian country. Maybe a combined total
of four or five teams ran Kyoto, of which one, maybe two claimed climate. Is
your claim really that because ANWR was a disad for a little while two years ago
that the significance of U.S. energy policy and fossil fuel dependence has been
exhausted as a potential area for debate?
Do not be scared by people?s 1997 backfiles on climate or whatever. Those
arguments are largely old and not descriptive of the current state of climate
science. If you think its gonna be a topic of CO2 and SO2 you are wrong. I
have no doubt those arguments will exist, and may even win a few debates
level to which the debate has advanced beyond that is extraordinary. People?s
Gelbspan 1997 cards are old news. Since then there have been international
conferences, leaked pentagon reports, scientific assessments and letter writing
campaigns that have changed the nature of that ?old boring debate?. Did you
know that the Pentagon, the leading office orchestrating the global war on
terrorism and occupation of Iraq, has recently come out saying that global
warming is a ?bigger threat than terrorism? and that warming ?should be elevated
beyond a scientific debate to a US national security concern?
The ?old? energy debate is not the same one you have imagined. The scene is
largely different now. On the treaties topic Kyoto?s ratification (globally)
was in question for a little bit. Now the globe has committed to it, and the US
is the main holdout. The international scene and significance of a US energy
debate is just largely different and distinct.
I hate to say it, but if you want to get into discussions of ?didn?t past topics
tangentially overlap with this research base? ? was not a significant portion of
the ICC debates about reforming the domestic legal system to keep pace with
international customs and norms? Most teams counterplan to the ICC AFF that
claimed genocide was the Federal Courts CP. We heard that all year running the
I?m not trying to imply that all of what a courts topic has to offer has been
exhausted by debates over the ICC, I?m just trying to say that this sort of
?topic overlap? is inevitable to a certain extent. Don?t choose the topic based
on which one has never been discussed ever before. If that were the case what
would some older coaches in the community vote for cause everything has some
I think you should make the decision based on what area is both
interesting/relevant to the current state of world affairs/our lives and that
provides a fair amount of predictable ground on both sides while allowing a
modest amount of innovation. I think energy policy, having the potential to be
a ?larger concern than terrorism? according to the Pentagon who is at war with
?terrorists? ? is incredibly timely/relevant, and provides a fair amount of
ground on both sides (this part wasn?t really disputed, see my previous posts
about ground on an energy topic).
You also say that this would be an impact war topic and all we want to do is
throw down on oil and economy.
Do you really think energy is all about big impacts and nuclear war? While
those debates will be fun, no doubt, to say that they will be the only things
uncovered by the topic is to sell the community short. A lot of my discussion
about interesting, innovative and specific critical ground was ignored by your
post. All of the environment Ks and ecology Ks are all ripe areas for debate.
Not to mention things like environmental racism, waste siting, etc are all
issues ripe for discussion. I understand that this might be slightly similar to
the nuclear mining/mapping AFFs on the Indians topic, but it is a largely
different debate. One deals with nuclear mining on Indian lands, whereas this
topic would cover waste siting near urban areas. I guess you could say that
because they are both minority groups getting screwed over in an environmental
context then it is somewhat similar ? but hardly the same. In a debate context,
the literature base is largely different and the arguments largely distinct.
You wan?t passionate impact comparison in the 2AR ? why doesn?t this qualify?
(not that this is the only possible AFF to get there, just offering an example).
How do you say ?yes CLS sucks? and federalism is a boring debate and then cast
your support for a courts topic? I sort of agree with Raja?s post about the
courts topic. The train wrecks DA and strict scrutiny are not issues I think
would be fun to debate all year. I still don?t think anyone has answered the
boredom DA (which I agree is subjective, but it seems that by far the majority
of people posting have expressed fears of health care and courts getting stale
Seriously ? look at what people are posting as ?core neg ground? on these other
topic posts. Feminist jurisprudence and CLS vs. Green capitalism, criticisms of
science/technologized approaches to the environment, environmental
securitization, etc. Come on how can you possibly vote for the former??
Whit Whitmore posts about different areas of neg ground on a courts topic and
discloses such winners as:
XO - wonderful, process counterplan ground
Cong - another process counterplan
Morgan Powers - imagine that, another process counterplan
Ex Parte Merrymen (sp?) -say what?
Con Con -fourth process counterplan, and still counting
Referendums -wow I cant even believe this one made it on the
Lopez -almost bored to death, but not yet
State Courts -wow we?re at seven process/alternative actor cp?s
State Compacts? -nine
Lower Courts -ten ? ten process/change the u.s. actor counterplans
definitely my idea of a fun year
Alt Grounds -so we got the pic to do the plan on different grounds
? -this might be sustainable
through Harvard until teams
get defenses of their grounds
Alt Case -what? Do the AFF but rule on a different case? You
honestly believe you can find a winning net benefit to this?
Unanimous v. Simple Majority -oh great, another process counterplan ? AFF is a
9-0, why not counterplan in a 5-4 decision
Strict Scrutiny -see above boredom da
and I?ll stop there cause I?ve probably let a few too many cats out of the bag
Yeah...and all those cats are praying they win the flip and go aff
A specific movements DA? I know I didn?t debate the latter half of Indians but
from what Nirav tells me about how him and Jason Sykes went for movements DAs
every round it doesn?t sound like that much of a winner for the neg.
Whit throws a few more out there:
SOP. Core Negative ground. SOP. Do I even need to make an argument here?
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