[eDebate] Topic Framing methods and vegatable throwers!

Jean-Paul Lacy lacyjp
Thu May 4 10:19:00 CDT 2006

>I saw the cheapshot by JP that my arguments are "bad" and I understand 
>that is how he deals with different
>perspectives.  I say all of your arguments defend the status quo, which I 
>think is not good. (perspective)

The status quo could use improvement (as would *anyone* invested in the 
topic process.)

The question that puts things in perspective is "How much change do we 
need?" I completely agree with your goal that "the resolution should be 
broad enough to have ample affirmative ground, being predictable, but not 

Which raises questions of "How much ground, how predictable, and, how 
static?" If the resolution is worded too broadly (which I think your off 
the cuff examples are, and I thought your 'change foreign policy toward the 
PRC' topic was; negatives will be forced into the worst of predictable 
static generics. Your responses to this argument last year were....bad. One 
perspective announced by you was "we've already got the negative 
researched...") If this were a blog, I could create an insta-poll about the 
Mexico topic. I think I'd win by an avalanche that "It was far, far worse 
than having my fingernails pulled out one by one by the Michigan State squad."

>Its not about JP or I, and its not about crazy topic wording or Korcok and 
>vegtable throwers.  Its about
>assumptions we make in the topic wording process that must be revealed to 
>be understood.


This is why I keep asking you what assumptions you think we should make in 
the wording process. Your response has *still* been largely silent.

"Keep it simple" makes sense to me if it can meet your goals as well as the 
goals of all those involved in writing resolutions by committee.

I'd like to see options on the ballot that give the aff the limited "good" 
ground (the subjective 'persuasive side' of the literature,) but not much 
wiggle room at all as far as the plan mechanism goes or the advantage areas 
they wind up stuck defending.

The era of the 'ideologically correct' generic negative should end. For too 
many years (including 'Federal Control,') we've given the negative at least 
the best side of the debate.

True, many affs were correct on all but the 'debate side' of the topic. 
True, many affs could scrape their way through or survive by value of 
surprise. But on the whole, I think we've overestimated the value of being 
aff and the power of speaking last. Late elim round statistics from this 
year may state the opposite, but in my mind, that is a function of the 
unpredictable subject matter of available case advantages and unstable plan 

I can hear it now: "Nice platitude JP."

Like Jakie says "We will have approximately 22 days to research the topic 
area to decide on possible wordings."

Can we balance the goals Jackie & I have articulated in that time? I hope, 
which is why I'm glad I'm not on the topic committee. In all honesty, y'all 
work incredibly hard for zero renumeration. So thanks in advance. I'll help 
as much as I can.

--JP Lacy
lacyjp at wfu.edu

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