[eDebate] Time to Review the Merger

Gary Larson Gary.N.Larson
Thu Jun 8 21:21:43 CDT 2006

Andy's call to evaluate the effects of the "merger" between CEDA and NDT
is an important call do something that is a necessary part of
institutional decision-making. If we're not self-reflective about the
impact of decisions we make, we will inevitably evolve in directions
that are less than ideal.
But the final paragraph of Andy's post deserves comment.  He asks
presumably the historically CEDA part of his audience, 
"Do we still want to be a part of the NDT process? Has it paid off for
The irony here is that the "merger" such as it is was not a CEDA
decision to be part of the NDT process.  It was rather an NDT decision
to be part of the CEDA process.  The watershed moment was a decision by
the NDT community to adopt the CEDA topic.  The conditions for that
decision - that the topic be worded as a policy resolution and that
there only be one topic per year - had both been essentially already
adopted by the CEDA community independent of any possibility that the
NDT would adopt the CEDA topic.
As a result, the topic selection process remains uniquely a CEDA
constitutional function, even if some fret that it has been co-opted. 
If CEDA were to decide that Andy's concern is warranted and that CEDA no
longer wanted to be part of the NDT process, it would discover that
unilateral disengagement is impossible.  The question is not whether
CEDA adopts the NDT topic - it's whether the NDT adopts the CEDA topic. 
Besides topic construction there really is no merger (other than that
defined by travel patterns and choices to attend one or both of the
national tournaments - but a number of schools played on both sides of
the street long before there was talk of a merger).
Given a somewhat popular narrative that says that CEDA lost programs to
Parli because it capitulated to NDT, the real story is perhaps even more
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