[eDebate] rulebreaking doesn't win a lot of debates and there will be no mass exodus

Andy Ellis andy.edebate
Tue Jun 19 17:47:36 CDT 2007

I dont really disagree with any thing stannard says in this post, though i
think he is perhaps being slightly more elitist than i am comfortable with
in his assesment of how many of these deabtes occur, but the point is well

I dont think there is any chance of schism and my most recent conversation
with hanson, should in fairness be appreciated in the context of a
backchannel that inadvertantly became public. I think that in that context i
approached that conversation slightly differently than i would have had i
thought it public....

Finally i do echo the cry "down with hansen" mmm bop was hands down the
worst good song ever, even worse than that hey baybay song i hear all the
time these days, but jim hanson, even though i disagree with him sometimes
is someone im excited to know is in my community...

On 6/19/07, matt stannard <stannardmatt at hotmail.com> wrote:
>  At this point the threat of a schism is laughable.  "Schism" implies, in
> context if not in literal definition, a large-scale split.  We're talking
> about maybe three or four schools leaving and forming their own debate
> league with open resolutions -- a move which would be disasterous for their
> travel budgets.  The reason that more schools do not wilfilly embrace
> self-consciously nontopical affs now is that there are usually only one or
> two teams every year, out of like 200, who win a significant number of
> debates with those affs.  The rest of the teams that do it are poor
> imitators of "rebel" teams they idolize.  And usually their politics are
> completely absurd, confrontational towards the wrong targets (eg "Ross Smith
> is the MAN!!!" and "Down with Hansen" kind of stupidity) and they can't
> answer arguments or explain their research.  Once they learn to do those
> things, they realize the opportunity cost to debating the topic isn't as
> ideologically or competitively taxing as they thought.
> There ain't no movement here, folks.  There are a few posts on edebate.
> Moreover, I haven't seen a resolution yet that didn't allow teams to take
> a critical approach to their affs if they wanted to.  Sure, they might have
> to shift their brand of criticism to accomodate the literature, and may even
> have to run arguments they don't personally or unqualifiedly endorse.  I
> really like hearing critical affs, creative approaches to answering various
> brands of procedural and substantive debate, etc.  I don't see anything
> wrong with that.  But if the bottom line is "I should get to run whatever
> the fxxx I want," here's my sober assessment of that cry: No you shouldn't.
> I don't care about your myopia.  Go cry to your mama.  Better yet, prove
> that you are capable of REAL creativity: the kind that comes from stretching
> boundaries instead of running away from them.  And prove that you are
> capable of genuine political engagement: the kind that comes from working
> within democratic parameters.
> But back to my original point: In the status quo, maybe one or two teams
> every year can win with genuine, unadalterated rulebreaking, and it's just
> not going to get any larger than that.  And I can live with that, and I
> really don't care if that's not good enough for either side in this
> increasingly ridiculous discussion.
> stannard
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