[eDebate] *Legal Topic Good*

Josh Hoe jbhdb8
Thu Apr 6 23:48:21 CDT 2006

Rather than continually repost all the same objections from 10 years of the
same discussion - I will only say:

I think aff flex is uber stinky......I have talked to virtually everyone
except Mike, Jackie, Matt, and the entire state of California (except for
USC) and they all agree 100% with me.  So there!

(please realize, for the record, that Josh is trying to start this all on a
much lighter note then in prior years)


On 4/7/06, dbteam <dbteam at westga.edu> wrote:
> i will use Matt's informative and productive post to echo some of his
> points
> which i feel have a lot of support in the community (based on
> conversations i
> have frequently among various groups), but which rarely seem to carry any
> weight when the actual resolutions get written:
> 1) The Resolution should not overly constrict aff plan variations by
> including
> specified agents or narrow lists of actions. this is not 1991. the growth
> of K
> ground and PICs have made debating on the NEG much easier and debating
> against
> the examples of small abusive aff cases that are always listed during the
> discussion EVEN EASIER. any casual observation of elims where sides are
> chosen
> by coin-toss reveals that waaaay too many teams flip NEG for there to be
> the
> slant toward the AFF that is the premise for the resolutions that are so
> narrowly drawn. this year's topic didn't didn't specify the agent and
> didn't
> include a list of plans, and i STILL noticed teams flipping NEG.
> while i, like Gerber, think a bidirectional topic would be great, i have
> no
> expectation that we'll get one of those. at this point, a topic that
> allows
> teams to develop their own plans (rather than have the resolution list
> what
> plans they can run) would be cool.
> 2) For the love of Ahilan Arulanantham, please let the AFF actually SOLVE
> a
> harm. it makes no sense to pick harm areas and then write the resolution
> in
> such a way that the aff can only attempt piecemeal reforms that barely
> alleviate symptoms and can never address root causes. for example, don't
> include the area of legal abuses of drug enforcement if the aff can't
> legalize
> drug consumption and distribution. a half-way approach = half-assed
> debates
> where the aff can't actually solve the problem, the neg can't CP w/
> legalization b/c it's not competitive, and it only encourages horrible K
> args
> where the "alt" is a vague legalization option. if we want to debate
> executive
> abuses of power in the war on terror, allow the aff to eliminate executive
> authority, not merely regulate it.
> hester
> >===== Original Message From "Matt Gerber" <matt_gerber27 at hotmail.com>
> =====
> >I would rather rather see some discussion about next year's
> topic/resolution
> >than about the other stuff going on. Maybe other people would too? Here
> are
> >general reasons to support a Legal topic for 06-07.
> >
> >1. If worded properly, better critical ground for the aff. What I mean
> is,
> >maybe it could be worded with a bidirectional mechanism much like the
> >1994-1995 NDT Topic: Resolved: That the United States Federal Government
> >should substantially change criminal procedure in one or more of the
> >following areas: pre-trial detention or sentencing. That way the Aff
> doesnt
> >have to defend heinous things that the USFG/Court does, rather they can
> >change/overturn or otherwise run from the legitimacy of the legal system.
> It
> >gives the Aff at least a chance for good offense against Ks of the legal
> >system/state, etc. Ban Mandatory Minimums, Strengthen The X-Rule, Change
> >Detention procedures (Immigrants, "Terrorists", Refugees), would all be
> Affs
> >in that area. The criminal procedure topic was AWESOME. Ask people who
> >debated it.
> >
> >2. I dont buy the arguments about why a bidirectional topic is bad; they
> >could be good: a) increases education-- learn both sides of the topic,
> get
> >to research an aff you actually believe in, research the mechanism
> (criminal
> >procedure in the above example) in-depth, etc. b) you have to be able to
> "go
> >both ways" on most debate positions anyway. No one just goes in with
> their
> >"Hegemony Good" files (well maybe some), but in most cases ya gotta
> research
> >the other side too. c) if worded properly, you could control the scope
> and
> >predictability of the topic by limiting the areas (sentencing or
> pre-trial
> >detention in the above example), d) it could potentially make some of
> these
> >dumb theory debates about the merits of "switch-side" debating go away;
> in
> >fact, that would kinda be built into the topic I guess.
> >
> >3. I want a legal topic, not a "Courts" topic. There is a difference. The
> >example I used above is a LEGAL topic--- its in the realm of legal
> affairs,
> >but does NOT require the Court as an actor. It does NOT require the
> overturn
> >of a Supreme Court case. You could choose the Court as your actor, but
> not
> >required. It is also not a list topic. I think a Courts topic along the
> >lines of "Resolved: That the U.S. Supreme Court should overturn one or
> more
> >of the following cases...." would be bad. Real bad. It just seems too
> small,
> >too limiting for the Aff, certainly more of an advantage for negative K
> >teams. Potentially just a snoozer. I dont know, I guess I just hate
> topics
> >that spell it all out: No flexibility on the actor or the list.  I am in
> >favor of a topic in this area, but lets open it up a bit. I'm not saying
> we
> >should just debate the 94-95 NDT topic again, but I do think the topic
> >committee got it right that year.
> >
> >Just an opening salvo.
> >
> >~Gerber
> >
> >
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