Chaudoin Method Applied to Carroll Evidence

Another post from Stephen about the card at hand

Let’s apply the Chaudoin method to the Carroll evidence that has been heralded as the bringer of death for Consult:

Before doing that, let’s observe that this “piece of evidence” fails the old debate test of “claim + warrant = argument.”  I feel like a novice saying this, but, there’s no warrant in that card.  Also note that this is really unfair to Jamie because we’re talking about a footnote, not his actual argument.  I blame the author of the post for this silliness in the first place.

1)      Do the predictions logically flow from the assumptions:


This footnote seems to conflate “allowing a veto” with “subservience of foreign policy to the whims of other countries.”  It also seems to ignore the potential for the US to decide when to consult and when not to consult.

2)      Are real world data consistent with these predictions?


This footnote doesn’t mention any, so this is really a nonstarter anyways, but we could easily think of some pretty prominent examples where allowing other countries to veto foreign policy would have saved us some serious mockery.  Had the US actually consulted the UN on Iraq II, Jon Stewart would be out of a job.

3)      What are some more rigorous academic arguments related to the subject? (Khalilzad and a Friedman rant/op ed don’t count).

–          We might check out articles by Chapman and Reiter, or Chapman alone that are about the rally round the flag effect and international effects of consultation.  We might develop a better notion of “cooperation” by reading Carrubba’s “Courts and Compliance in International Institutions” etc.  Ikenberry’s “After Victory” is about hegemons “smoothing” their power trends by binding themselves to particular institutions.

Here’s another quick way to apply the Chaudoin method.  Ask: “Does the piece of ‘evidence’ I’m reading have all the depth of a Fox News transcript or does it actually make an argument?”

3 thoughts on “Chaudoin Method Applied to Carroll Evidence

  1. Casey Harrigan

    This whole “we’re Emory, we love consult” charade is weak-sauce. If you want to reply to me, I made a series of arguments in response to the Podcast that ya’ll haven’t responded to, so start there.

    As for Chaudoin, cool method. It would, of course, also eliminate every “genuine consultation key” card, which do not have predictions that flow from the assumptions and definitely do not have real world data consistent to support those predictions.

    Also – its fairly preposterous that someone in a Ph.D. program in Political Science would defend that the process of veto-power consultation is not an entirely contrived “real world” process. Guess that’s what you get from having a quant. focus.

  2. Teddy Aronson

    wait aren't “allowing a veto” over foreign policy and creating “subservience of foreign policy to the whims of other countries” the same thing by definition?

    I'd conflate the shit out of those

  3. Stephen

    @Casey Harrigan

    Whoah, methinks the dude who cut the 3 sentence blippet and portrayed it as an actual argument complete with sour-grapes hyperbole that would make Jim Mora Sr. blush doth protest too much.

    First, an RST: find the part of my post that said "consult is a good argument." Give up? Me too.

    Second, another opportunity for application of logical consistency tests. Does saying "a piece of anti consult evidence is bad" necessarily imply that "pro consult evidence is good"? No. It's entirely possible that both sets of evidence are bad (the belief I happen to subscribe to). It appears I may have overstated debaters' ability to use this skill when explaining why I think debate focuses on logical consistency over empirics.

    Lastly, allowing one veto doesn't mean always allowing a veto. This is the Neg trick to get out of those arguments, although I never understood why Neg's didn't then lose a lot of ground on "one instance of consultation doesn't do anything." I kinda think it has something to do with speech order- the 2NC makes the "one consult not equal always consult" argument in response to Carroll-esque arguments; the 1AR blips that "then consult once not solve relations forever;" then 2NR jive; then the 2AR forgoes a small defensive argument based on analytics in favor of other arguments.

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