[eDebate] Steve's proposal for staff
Thu Dec 1 14:38:04 CST 2005
A few weeks ago, I made a plea in favor of Steve Mancuso's proposal for
staff limitations at the NDT. I have not spoken about it since because
several people I really like/care about were really angry with me for
supporting the proposal.
I am just writing to say - and I have already apologized for being too
specific in my arguments - that I still support this proposal.
In baseball there is a team called the New York Yankees (JPLupo is going to
be mad) who have a network that provides them with billions more dollars in
revenue than other teams have access to....This skews baseballs
competitiveness in two ways:
1. It allows the Yankees to buy up all the best free agents year after year
2. It skews the salary structure across the league upwards because they can
afford to pay more for each player, coach, etc etc etc than any other team -
what they pay creates a market price for players. Agents use the salary
structure the Yankees can afford to pay as the baseline for players of
similar ability. This means all teams have to pay what the Yankees can pay
for all the players, coaches, etc etc etc that the Yankees choose not to
We have many schools in debate that have access to Yankees style money
relative to the vast majority of teams in debate. The reason baseball
created a "salary cap" is because they felt that the fans of all baseball
franchises should have the right to feel that, with good management, any
team could be competitive. The salary cap has clearly helped in this regard
(read money ball etc). While it is true that the combination of massive
money and talent still wins....limitations on the use of that money have
allowed other teams, well managed, to feel that they still have a chance.
In current debate terms - teams with a resource advantage can:
1. Push the price on hired judges so high that it becomes prohibitive.
2. Create a double disadvantage for teams that cant hire judges (they cant
coach as much while the team with resources can put a group of excellent
judges out of the pool and hire often marginal judges to take their place.
The resource constrained team gets less coaching and worse judging
3. Can create a war room of incredible debate minds that are not elligible
I have no issue with anyone who is succeeding using the system as it exists
to the best of their ability. However, I think it is obvious that not ever
team feels it has a fair chance to be competitive (please note I am NOT
talking about winning the NDT). I believe Steve's proposal is a step in the
right direction toward levelling the playing field.
Even if Steve's proposal is not the exact solution it moves in the right
direction and is a better than the sq. JW speaks of a time when debaters
competed against each other not against pre-scripted expert preperation. I
believe everyone who qualifies should believe they have a chance to compete
at the NDT. I am not sure I believe that is the case now. All I am arguing
for is a move in the direction of a salary cap.
I realize that this is an incredibly touchy issue. I do not mean to offend
anyone at all with my arguments but I do think that the salary cap is a good
idea in baseball and would be a good idea in debate.
Hope everyone is having a good holiday season,
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