[eDebate] C. Jones on the nuclear weapons topic

Paul Johnson paulj567
Wed May 13 09:42:38 CDT 2009

Does anyone else think worrying about deterring China and Russia is totally beside the point these days? I know this is a cheapshot aside but i dont have time for more

<goes back to writing K cards under the pseudonym Phineas J. Hofstedder>

--- On Tue, 5/12/09, Shawn Powers <spowers at usc.edu> wrote:

> From: Shawn Powers <spowers at usc.edu>
> Subject: [eDebate] C. Jones on the nuclear weapons topic
> To: edebate at ndtceda.com
> Cc: "Chris Jones" <cjones21 at gmail.com>
> Date: Tuesday, May 12, 2009, 7:47 PM
> Subject says it all....
> Begin forwarded message:
> From: Chris Jones <cjones21 at gmail.com>Date: May
> 12, 2009 5:17:35 PM PDTTo: Shawn Powers <spowers at usc.edu>Subject: edebate post?
>  Sp,
> any chance you could throw this up on edebate?? I
> don't have an account.? Much appreciated.
> Best,
> cj
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> 	{margin-bottom:0in;}#yiv1267642906 There has been
> surprisingly little topic discussion here or on the CEDA
> site about the topics, for better or worse, but with topic
> ballots due in the next bit I wanted to offer a reprieve
> from the evidence standards firestorm and provide a last
> plug for the nuclear weapons topic if there are still some
> folks on the fence:?
> The topic is
> sweet:?
> It?s now or never---
> as we discussed in our paper, if this topic is going to be
> debated this is the year.? After
> the NPR, QDR, NPT Review Conference, etc. are over this
> topic will be nowhere near as timely.?
> In the words of former Secretaries of Defense Perry
> and Schlesinger from the May 6 final report of the
> Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the
> United States (one of a few major reports that has been
> released in the couple weeks since topic papers have been
> out which speaks to the degree of awesome literature coming
> out on this question): This is a moment of
> opportunity to revise and renew U.S. nuclear strategy, but
> also a moment of urgency. The opportunity arises from the
> arrival of a new administration in Washington and the
> top-down reassessment that must now begin of national
> security strategy, of approaches to nuclear security, and of
> the purposes of U.S. nuclear weapons and their supporting
> capabilities. The urgency follows, internationally, from the
> danger that we may be close to a tipping point in nuclear
> proliferation and, domestically, from an accumulation of
> delayed decisions about the nuclear weapon
> program.(http://media.usip.org/reports/strat_posture_report.pdf)
> Good division of aff/neg policy ground - It
> provides affs with the a number of possible aff areas (arms
> control, doctrine, posture) while probably excluding some of
> the more ?nonproliferationesque? affs like set up an
> international fuel bank, strengthen the PSI, etc that
> don?t link to core neg ground are somewhat of a separate
> consideration.? The negative gets
> deterrence DA?s (both deterring Russia/China and extended
> deterrence) which is a huge chunk of core ground, impact
> turns to advantages (prolif good, npt cred bad, etc.) and a
> ton of counterplan ground based on how large and to what
> degree the aff reduces reliance. ????
> The K constituency-
> Jessica said this much more eloquently than I could but
> nuclear weapons is an awesome topic for the K.? Extend the Nunn, Kissinger, Schultz,
> Perry 2k7 impossible dream aff evidence.? The degree to which fundamental assumptions about the role the
> nuclear weapons play in our security have changed
> drastically even since it was last debated in 2002/2003
> (High School WMD/CTBT).? The
> Russian critical literature is almost predominately general
> foreign policy K?s (Schmidt, Tickner, Spanos, Heidegger,
> etc.) that almost all apply equally well, perhaps better, to
> a nuclear weapons topic but the reverse causal argument from
> Russia to nukes is not the case because the nuclear weapons
> critical literature argue nuclear weapons and the policies
> associated with them in and of themselves
> are problematic, which does not even have to even the broad
> level claims about international relations.?
> AT: A couple major
> concerns I?ve heard: ?
> Neg uniqueness ground -
> Cooperation with Russia and ?Reduce Reliance on Nuclear
> Weapons? are both parts of the Obama agenda- no question
> about it.? There are two major
> reasons this is less of a concern for nuclear weapons:
> A.????
> The complexity of
> relations-? US/Russian relations
> are horribly complex and as the Strategic Posture Commission
> (guess what I?ve been reading at work?) explains (http://media.usip.org/reports/strat_posture_report.pdf):
> Two decades after
> the end of the Cold War, Russia and the United States are
> certainly not enemies but neither are they allies. The
> picture is a bit more complex.?
> The two are strategic partners on some important
> international questions, but strategic competitors on
> others.The problem with
> this for debate is that affs (and 2 minute 1AC uniqueness
> observations) will run to things we are partners on and have
> mutual interests in dealing with but the neg ground for the
> topic is premised on the latter category of issues.? The affs will get smaller and smaller
> and the red spread DA will still be the red spread DA.? This is not the case with the nukes
> debate.? Even negotiating a START
> follow-on, which most people seem to think is a good idea,
> has to be approached very carefully.?
> Schlesinger?s remarks to the SASC on the Commission
> Report have an extended deterrence link in it for a START
> follow-on (http://armed-services.senate.gov/statemnt/2009/May/Schlesinger%2005-07-09.pdf)B.????
> How evidence gets
> deployed in debates- core neg ground on the Russia topic is
> ?cooperation bad.?? In other
> words, link cards will be based on the word
> ?cooperation? to try to garner internal link to big
> impacts and affs will update their ?united states and
> Russia and w/25 cooperation? to find a host of
> miscellaneous things we cooperate on.?
> It happened with pressure.?
> It happened with overrule.?
> It happened with financial aid.?
> The same is not the case with nuclear weapons because
> link arguments won?t be rhetorically based on ?reducing
> reliance on nuclear weapons.??
> Teams will not read link cards like ?if the US
> reduces their reliance on nuclear weapons, x happens? it
> will be things like ?if the United States cuts numbers, x
> country builds a bunch of nukes,? ?if the triad loses
> flexibility, y country freaks out? because the debates in
> the literature don?t occur at the meta-level of ?yes/no
> reliance.? I can?t speak to the Russia topic as much on
> this question but all of the ?US reducing nuclear reliance
> now? jazz is primarily Executive Branch/State Department
> huff and fluff that doesn?t impact topic da links.? We haven?t operationalized policies
> to make that reduced reliance the case and even "big
> steps" like the START follow-on are looking to be VERY
> modest so as to not disrupt any of these major deterrence
> considerations.? It is very easy
> for the State Department to decide to search a few more
> ships, plant a few trees, and pledge to jointly protect the
> environment in the name of cooperation with Russia but it is
> a BIG DEAL to make changes to our nuclear weapons strategy
> that has been at the core our the national security
> strategic of the United States as well as its allies and
> competitors for half a century.?
> Just ask the Pentagon.?
> ?Reliance? is a bad
> verb- I got an e-mail about reliance being bad because it is
> fuzzy and hard to quantify.? I
> agree that reliance is not just numbers and involves an
> element of perception but I think that is why it is a good
> topic.? Schlesinger is right that
> nuclear weapons are ?used? every day in the way they
> dissuade and deter and that is what the topic gets at.? The contextual T evidence on this
> question I thought was pretty good for a cursory
> search?both in carving out affs that actually do reduce
> reliance and ensuring neg link ground to thinks like the
> deterrence DA.? Reliance,
> salience, and emphasis seem to be the terminology used in
> many of the major reports on the issue.?
> All of this said, this also was a time constrained
> choice and should be further evaluated by the topic
> committee.?
> The ?in its national
> security policy? modifier is bad (Sorry Antonucci never
> check the facebook and just saw your message)?it didn?t
> show up in the approved controversy.?
> We thought it was decent but didn?t have time for a
> good evidentiary defense of it.?
> Probably a great thing for the topic committee to
> task out to explore.?
> ?
> Consider the real world
> impact a debate is pushing the envelope-? in debate terms this is a defensive
> takeout that does not take away from the reasons why this
> would be a sweet topic to debate.?
> That said, I don?t see why it is a bad thing that
> college debate topic could have a ?real world?
> impact.? If a college debate
> topic could have the added benefit of providing value to
> policymakers, why not?? Kids way
> down the road reading framework cards about how debating
> nuclear weapons had an impact seems like a cool thing to me
> but maybe I'm crazy.?
> According to the editor of the Nation, Katrina vanden
> Heuvel, from yesterday (http://www.thenation.com/blogs/edcut/434649/the_fierce_urgency_of_disarmament):?
> Dr. Bruce Blair of
> Global Zero said a major challenge will be to
> sustain the disarmament momentum and "prevent a
> lapse." While nuclear abolition has broadened
> its appeal politically--receiving endorsements from
> conservatives such as former Senator Chuck Hagel, John
> McCain, Henry Kissinger and George Schultz--Blair said the constituency isn't as
> vibrant as it needs to be and young people aren't
> sufficiently involved.? His
> colleague, former Ambassador Richard Burt, agreed. He said
> there simply isn't "a constituency like there was
> twenty or thirty years ago. Younger people are not paying
> attention."? (Yes
> this is from a blog. It is also from a reputable blog
> quoting qualified nuclear people and is talking about the
> role of young people not a cp/da strat)
> Time will be very tight this week but will try to
> answer concerns if I can.? 
> Best,
>  cj
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