[eDebate] Judging Consult CP's

Josh jbhdb8
Thu Oct 4 15:09:57 CDT 2007

For the most part Consultation CPs serve the function of a generic argument
teams run at the beginning of the year when they arent entirely sure how
judges will allow affirmatives to interpret the topic AND/OR against new
cases.  Aside from Scotty P, I dont know many people who had/have
consultation as a long term A Strat.

In other words - while consult might be stupid (it is), its a convention
used to help the negative at the beginning of a topic year.....I don't think
most/many people use it to replace "topic education" as Hardy states.  I
guess I dont think its that much to ask the affirmative to balance the
advantage of having the ability to roll out new affs with the disadvantage
of having to cut a few "say no" cards.


On 10/4/07, Aaron Hardy <spoon_22 at hotmail.com> wrote:
> I'm encouraged that I've received a fair amount of feedback so quickly.
> Thanks to all that took the time out of pre-Kentucky prep.  Answering
> every
> email line by line would be time-consuming, but here's my attempt to
> quickly
> consolidate.  Several people backchanneled me rather than post to edebate
> ?
> I won't repost their answers or names here, but I will try and deal with
> their comments in a general way.
> 1)  "Consult CP's are just like stupid critiques and performance
> arguments."
> (Multiple Backchannels)
> I'm not a fan of those arguments either?but I'm not ready to start
> throwing
> around 25's to every argument I dislike.  I'm not on some ideological
> crusade to impose all of my views on every debate ? I just want to know if
> there's *anything* we can collectively do as a judging and coaching pool
> to
> push us in a more positive and educational direction.  I also think that
> while I wouldn't shed a tear if I never judged another debate on a
> hyper-generic backfile K, that those arguments are somewhat less
> egregious.
> They're stupid ? but less structurally unfair than the consultation CP.
> 2)  "Sometimes consult makes sense/you have to consider the views of other
> countries" (Scott and others)
> This reasoning is logically defunct.  Just because the U.S. should
> "consider
> the views of others" doesn't mean that there's literature defending
> literally giving another country a veto over U.S. policy.  Even if that
> evidence exists in SOME context, it never, ever, exists in the context of
> the PLAN.  "Unilateralism vs Multilateralism" is entirely distinct from
> letting Japan dictate U.S. policy on Iran.
> There's another obvious problem with this.  Disadvantages alone ensure
> these
> issues get discussed, but in a fair way.  If Japan cares whether we do
> Opium
> Licensing in Afghanistan, then the neg should be able to run the US-Japan
> relations DA and say that failure to consult them angers them.  That is
> a justification for why the negative gets the right to run a CP which does
> the entirety of the affirmative.  The whole premise of the consult CP is
> that everyone gets that the relations DA alone is incredibly stupid ?
> precisely because Japan doesn't really care about the plan.  Ergo, there's
> no literature on it, and it makes for terrible debates.
> 3)  "Prejudging arguments means debaters don't learn" (Paul and Russell)
> Andrew already dealt with this ? this argument would mean we should
> encourage a return to hypo-testing and counterwarrants so that debaters
> can
> learn to beat bad arguments.  The idea that we should consciously choose
> to
> let debate be stupider than it could be solely to teach people to beat
> things makes little sense to me.
> Even if they're not run, it doesn't mean debaters won't learn about them ?
> I
> think I still have a responsibility as a coach to teach my students about
> what counterwarrants are, even though the odds of my team debating them
> are
> low.
> Even if the debaters do learn something valuable through this process, I
> think there's still an inherent tradeoff.  Perhaps there is some value in
> my
> students researching Consult Turkey answers two days before Gonzaga ? but
> I
> think it's hard to say they wouldn't have been better off cutting more
> cards
> about Iran.
> 4)  "Debaters should be able to beat them" (Scott and Paul)
> This sets the bar way too high for the aff.  Yes, these arguments are
> beatable ? but that doesn't make them fair, and it certainly doesn't make
> them educational, especially in terms of pre-tournament prep.  Going for
> theory is a hard call in ANY debate.  I can't even remember the last 2AR I
> saw entirely on theory, precisely because most debaters know it's a losing
> strategy.  It's just not how the modern judge pool judges.  "Arg not team"
> is a mantra, "This CP isn't so bad" is a gut-check response, and "neg
> flex"
> is basically a cult.  Beating them substantively is even more ridiculous ?
> the logical ground for the aff is that every country in the world hates
> the
> aff, or that the US should have poor relations with all those countries.
> The aff shouldn't have to do that.  It's just more ridiculous when the neg
> gets the right to Consult Bhutan with nothing but a card that passingly
> uses
> the word consult.  I could say more here ? but I think it's apparent that
> neg teams get that they unfair to the aff ? it's the whole reason they run
> them.
> 5)  "Judges should hold consult to the same standard" (Paul)
> They should, but the bottom line is that they don't.  What qualifies as
> "evidence" on these questions is laughable.  I challenge anyone to
> publicly
> post a piece of consultation solvency evidence that is actually about
> BINDING consultation over U.S. policy on any plan on this topic.  The word
> "genuine" being used in a different context than it means in debate
> doesn't
> cut it.  Again ? even if someone comes up with this magic card, it seems
> like a good justification for a really good relations DA.  Not a shortcut
> CP.
> 6)  "Punishing is stupid" (Scott)
> I think others have also responded to this.  I don't think it's stupid if
> you value the educational content of debates.  When the focus is
> on "what can I use to administer a beat-down," then I think we're
> abdicating
> a larger responsibility as coaches, judges, and educators.
> Rewarding people who beat these arguments are not a deterrent to running
> them ? which means it would be a complete failure at limiting out those
> debates in the first place.  Punishing people for losing to it is even
> worse
> ? it would incentivize people to run it, on the hope that they'd win AND
> tank someone elses points.
> 7)  "Consultation can be 'tight'" (Scott)
> I cut the Koizumi DA too ? I wish that I'd been cutting something else or
> something that was actually about the aff.  There was a direct tradeoff.
> Finding cards on Koizumi's political capital and looking for reasons why
> Japanese tractor companies would oppose our ag aff was not an educational
> or
> productive use of my time.  It certainly wasn't about the topic I was
> ostensibly supposed to be debating.
> You then make my argument for me ? Consult teams rely on the same bad
> blocks
> every year.  While that might create a few very isolated worlds where the
> aff can find something new, the simple fact is that there's usually NOT a
> DA
> like Koizumi to cut.  I challenge you to publicly post a piece of evidence
> that actually says the words "Egypt w/50 veto w/50 Israel" in the context
> of
> ANY plan being read on the topic.  There are no serious suggestions that
> we
> should conduct U.S. foreign policy in that manner.
> 8)  "1 piece of paper is nonsense" (Scott)
> Case specific DA's and PIC's are qualitatively different, regardless of
> how
> they're flowed ? they encourage an assessment of argument interaction and
> topic-specific clash.  Consult encourages the negative to ignore the aff
> in
> its entirety, both before and during the tournament.
> 9)  "Experiments are bad" (Scott)
> Instead, we should fail to innovate, adapt, and push the community
> forward?
> Seriously?    I welcome judges being willing to try things with an open
> mind
> and evaluate successes and failures.  That's the literal opposite of the
> judge you describe from NFL who never got out of the 60s.  His precise
> problem was that he wasn't willing to "experiment" with running a CP or
> listening to T.
> The rest of what you say is largely my argument ? I try to the greatest
> degree possible to limit my intervention in debates.  The one time I've
> been
> forced to adjudicate consult after I instituted my policy, I still voted
> for
> it.  Precisely because it was a "technical" win.  That's the whole point
> of
> questioning the value of using speaker points as an educative tool ? that
> negative's have zero incentive in the status quo to do anything other than
> continue with business as usual ? ignoring the topic and picking up just
> enough easy wins to never bother with another strategy.
> 10)  "Just vote against it" (Greg Thomas)
> I'm very uncomfortable with this ? I definitely toyed with the idea of
> just
> publicly saying I wouldn't vote on these argument ? but I think that would
> be irresponsible of me as a judge.  It's just not my place to sacrifice a
> drive towards (imperfect) objectivity just because I'm grumpy.  To me,
> speaker points are a middle ground between doing nothing and stepping
> outside of my role.
> Like I said at the get-go, I'm not convinced that it's the best strategy
> for
> change ? but I'm still not convinced it's worse than nothing.
> aaron
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