[eDebate] Worker Rule

Raja Gaddipati rajdebate
Thu Apr 20 13:41:15 CDT 2006

NOTE: I'm not going to rehash any arguments against the NDT Worker Rule. I have made them before as have others. Instead, I'll focus on responding to what the Mancuso has to say about this travesty of a rule. 

> The intention of the rule - which I thought had been clear - was to
> limit every school who attends the NDT to 2 (two) non-undergraduate
> workers.  These two people are the only non-undergraduates from that
> school who can write or research arguments during the tournament.

Clearly, your intentions did not translate well into the language of the rule. Maybe you should hire a drafter next time.

> I believe that it is an important step in the right direction for the
> tournament, even if it is not somehow perfect.  The vast majority of
> the rules that we have could be re-interpreted and nit-picked to death
> - or at least into ambiguous limbo.  I don't think we should allow the
> perfect to become the enemy of the good.

BUT the vast majority of rules you have are non nit-picked and re-interpreted to death, because they don't generate this much opposition. Do you think the re-interpretation and nit-picking signals something? 

> Repealing the new rule returns us to the rule: "The number of workers
> for a school will be determined by their ability to pay."  Hmm.

That sounds like everything else in life. Hmm. 

> The new worker rule benefits well over 80% of the schools who attend
> the tournament.
> My rough estimate is that the rule, based on the 2006 NDT would have
> benefitted: Baylor, Binghamton, Boston College, Case Western, Catholic,
> Central Oklahoma, Concordia, Cal State Fullerton, Denver, Georgia
> State, Gonzaga, Idaho State, James Madison, Kentucky, Liberty,
> Macalaster, Mary Washington, Miami, Michigan, Missouri Kansas City,
> North Texas, Oklahoma, Pittsburgh, Redlands, Richmond, Rochester,
> Samford, Southern California, Texas-Dallas, Trinity, Vermont, West
> Georgia, Wichita State and Wyoming.   There may be others that should
> be on this list.

How do you figure?  What'd you do?  Conduct a survey of the coaches on these teams?  Poll the debaters?  Or did you apply the Mancuso test: i.e. "SPM thinks this would great for "x" university?"  And then you  say "I'm not sure that every person from the school on this list supports the rule."  So I can only assume you didn't ask.  Who's in a better position to determine what's good for their program?  SPM or the DEBATE COACH AT THE DAMN SCHOOL.     

> Maybe we should just give in and say that the rules of the NDT should
> be whatever works best for MSU, Emory, Harvard, Wake Forest, Kansas,
> and a few others, since (wink, wink) it's really a tournament just
> about them anyhow.

Would you have supported this rule when you were the debate coach at the University of Michigan? Suddenly, you're taking up for the little guy?

> Early on in this debate - back in November - the accusation was made
> that this proposal targeted Northwestern.  [Clearly the recent debate
> proves that this proposal cuts against more than one school.]  Many of
> you know that Scott Deatherage strongly opposed the original rule but
> supported the current version, the one we passed.  Some believe there
> was a compromise between myself and him on this.  I don't really view
> it that way.  I genuinely became convinced by the force of his
> arguments that we shouldn't place much limit on undergraduates, for
> pedagogical reasons.  I also think Scott became convinced that
> restrictions on non-undergraduates were for the overall good of the
> NDT, even at the risk of slightly hurting his own chances of winning.
> So perhaps the debate over this issue has, after all, had the real
> effect of singling him out, for the better, in my opinion.

What is up with you repeatedly stating the position of other people?  If Deatherage wanted to comment on this rule, I'm sure he would.  Why don't you stop stating the supposed views of other people in an effort to marshall support for your rule?  It is utterly preposterous that you would suggest that you know whether or not Northwestern University and/or its Director of Debate's supports your craptastic rule. You don't have any damn idea.  This is a pathetic attempt to manipulate other people into supportinng your position on the issue.



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