Throwdown- Reps K Legit

For this I will defend the Neg reading a reps K vs any theory argument or permutation based arg about why K’s that don’t link to the plan are legitimate.

Assume for the 1NC the neg read this card from the reps card picking thread as a justification for why reps matter:

Discussion of representations is logically prior to consideration of the plan since the cognitive filters they establish determines what counts as evidence

Dibyesh Anand   PhD (Bristol), MA (Hull), BA Honours (St Stephen’s College, Delhi)   Reader in International Relations Centre for the Study of Democracy, Westminster University, London,Geopolitical exotica: Tibet in western imagination p. 12-16 2007

WORLD POLITICS AS THE POLITICS OF IMAGINATION Social and cultural identities by their very nature have always been discursively constructed. What is new and peculiar to modernity is the desire and ability to construct a bounded identity based on a fixed and autonomous idea of self. This has been paralleled by the power of representations to construct identity and by highly unequal access to discursive and representational resources at a global level. Representational practices feed the dominant knowledge regimes and structures and shape the very identities they seek to represent. The best-known example of this is the ideational construct of Orientalism, which reflects the close connection between particular modes of cultural representations, anthropology, and European imperialism (see Said 1978). In the process it also creates the categories of “Oriental** and “Occidental” people. Representation and Critical IR Within IR, it is important to look at Western cultural representations of non-Western people. This is so for various reasons. Representations populate the world with specific subject positions within which concretized individuals arc then interpellated (sec Wcldcs T999). Identity claims of various non-Western communities thus operate within power relations put in place by the West. This does not deny non-Westerners their agency, for there is always space for resistance and accommodation. Rut it emphasizes differential access to the creation and molding of discursive (both material and nonmaterial) resources. It offers ways of challenging and denaturalizing modes of representation that abet domination by “making it acceptable and coherent within the dominant ethos that constructs domestic selves and exotic Others” (Shapiro 1988, 122-23). Recognition of the productive dimension of representation implies that the very basis of world politics—identity—is challenged. The recognition of the salience of Western representations of the non-West in world politics also questions the conventional view of international studies as a social “science” that has little to do with culture, morality, society, and the like. It underlines the importance of culture as a factor in molding, sustaining, and questioning political practices. It recognizes world politics as a process of cultural interactions in which the identities of actors (including their values and visions) arc not given prior to or apart from these interactions. Instead, they are shaped and constituted in the complexes of social practices that make up world politics. Rather than denying the importance of actors in enacting and reshaping the social practices in which they are embedded, it focuses our attention also on the social construction of actors. Thus, representation is an inherent and important aspect of global political life and therefore a critical and legitimate area of inquiry. “A whole range of analyses in IR have taken this [Said’s] idea up and mapped the different ways in which the West constructs the non-western world” (Diken and Laustsen 2.001, 768).This comment is surprising given that IR, including critical IR, with few exceptions (see Biswas 2001; Doty 1996b; Gustcrson 1999) has more or less ignored the questions raised by Orientalism critique. The question of representation has historically been excluded from the academic study of international relations and the “price that international relations scholarship pays for its inattention to the issue of representation is perpetuation of the dominant modes of making meaning and deferral of its responsibility and complicity in dominant representations” (Doty 1996b, 171). The focus on representation within critical IR has been mainly on the constitutive function of representation in generating and sustaining particular policy regimes {sec Dory 1996b) and on the identity politics of the representee For instance, Campbell argues that the inscription of otherness was linked to American foreign policy and the enframing of American identity: At one time or another, European and American discourse has inscribed women, the working class. Eastern Europeans, Jews, blacks, criminals, coloreds, mulattos, Africans, drug addicts, Arabs, the insane, Asians, the Orient, the Third World, terrorists, and others through tropes that have written their identity as inferior, often in terms of their being a mob or horde (sometimes passive and sometimes threatening) that is without culture, devoid of morals, infected with disease, lacking in industry, incapable of achievement, prone to be unruly, inspired by emotion, given to passion, indebted to tradition, or . . . whatever “we” are not. (iyy8b, 8y) In Weldes (1999) as well as Weldes et al. (1999), representation is analyzed as a central concept of international relations and foreign policy. As in Campbell, it is the foreign policy regime sustained by particular representational practices and the identity of the repre-senter (the United States) that is under investigation. Doty (1993, 1996a, 1996b) provides effective analysis of representation as foreign political practice. Similarly, Neumann studies the “use of ‘the Hast’ as the other” (1999; emphasis added) as a general practice in the identify formation of Europe; Klein examines NATO “as a set of {representational] practice by which the West has constituted itself as a political and cultural identity” (1990, 313); and Dalby (1988) analyzes how the Soviet Union was constructed as a dangerous Other in order to produce an ideological rationale for the U.S. national security state-In all these studies of Western representation of the Other, the focus is on either its rationalizing role in some foreign policy regime or on its productive effect on dominant identity discourses within the West. These works have not dealt with the poetics and politics of Western representations of the non-West from the vantage point of the latter. The focus has remained largely on a critique of Western practices, not on its productive and restrictive impact on the non-West. This is at best an incomplete step in the right direction. While recognizing the significance of representation of the Other for the representee we must identify and analyze the impact on the identity of the represented. Chapters 4-6 focus on the productive dimension of representations vis-a-vis the represented through the empirical study of the identity of Tibet and Tibetans. My emphasis is on the ways in which particular encounters between the West and the non-West have shaped the latter. Representations support not only particular politics of the representor toward the represented but, significantly, they construct the very identities of the actors involved, especially the Other. Representations are productively linked with identity discourses of all kinds. The conventional idea that representation draws upon a pregiven identity is turned on its head, for it is identity that is fashioned out of particularized representations. In the case of Exotica Tibet, then, representational discourses are not reflective of, but actually productive of, Tibetan identity. Within critical 1R, the paucity of serious consideration of the “how,” “why,” and “what impact” questions of Western representations of/on non-Wcstcrn communities shows that the task of provincializing the West has only just begun. Theorizing Representation Constructionist theories (Hall 1997b, 15-74) are best suited for a contextualized understanding of social and political concepts like representation and identity. They do not argue that the material world does not exist but that it acquires meaning only through the mediation of language and discursive systems. Though such a discursive approach characterizes the work of many scholars, no one has been more prominent than Foucault (1970, 1971, 1980, 1984, 1986) in shaping it. Foucault is concerned with the production of knowledge and meaning not through language but through discourse. Discursive practices have their own inclusionary and exclusionary aspects. Discursive practices are characterised by the delimitation of a field of objects, t
he definition of a legitimate perspective for the agent of knowledge, and the fixing of norms for the elaboration of concepts and theories. Thus, each discursive practice implies a play of prescriptions that designate its exclusions and choices. (Foucault 19X6, 199) Foucault’s reformulation of discourse also calls for recognition of the explicit linkage between knowledge, truth, and power. Identification of the knowledge-power (pouvoir/savoir) nexus reveals the linkage of truth claims with systems of power: Truth isn’t outside power, or lacking of power: contrary to a myth whose history and functions would repay further study, truth isn’t the reward of free spirits, the child of protracted solitude, nor the privilege of those who have succeeded in liberating themselves. Truth is a thing of the world: it is produced only by virtue of multiple forms of constraint. {Foucault 1980, Z91) The recognition of the constructed character of truth facilitates a critical political positioning. Nothing is sacrosanct. However, this docs not undermine the impact of truth claims on the lives of people. All knowledge, once applied in the “real” world, has real effects and in that sense becomes true.1′ This Foucauldian identification and exploration of the link between power, knowledge, and truth is radical in its implication. It shifts the terrain of inquiry from the question “What is truth?” to the question How do discursive practices constitute truth claims?” In terms of representation, we may see the implication as a shift in the focus from some core reality beneath/behind representations to the modalities of their functioning. The question is no longer whether a representation is true or false but what discursive practices operate to render it true or false. It is not about how representations reflect some subjects but, more crucially, how subjectivity itself is constructed within discursive practices, how representational regimes are productive of subjectivity. Discourses then are “practices which form the objects of which they speak” (Foucault J972., 49). Adopting this approach to Tibetan identity, the pertinent question shifts from “How far do representations (both Western and self-) of Tibetans reflect their identity?” to “How do representational regimes affect the discursive production of Tibetanness?” This helps us look at Tibctanness as a politicized identification process, instead of some pregiven, essentialzed, fixed object.

The more detailed you explain your argument the more detailed the response will be, so fragments like “plan focus k2 learn about the plan” will be met with responses like “turn reps focus k2 learn about the reps”.

One problem I think aff’s have with these sort of theory args is they don’t have great answers to the carded neg arguments about why representations are important. An important tactic the aff should adopt is why an inclusion of reps discussion is possible in their fwork rather than an explicit plan focus fw. Having evidence for this sort of argument can help as well:

Elizabeth A Pritchard. Hypatia. Bloomington: Summer 2000. Vol. 15, Iss. 3; p. 45

The third way in which a feminist reinscription of the development logic of mobility jeopardizes women’s well-being is that a fixation on development or liberty as escaping or exiting the “closure” entailed in various locations reinscribes a utopianism that jeopardizes the possibility of a politics directed toward constructing an alternative and liveable world. And here again, some postmodern theorists betray the legacy of the Enlightenment. The dislocated mobile subjects of the Enlightenment are “at home” in a utopianism that defers the burden of the definitions, representations, and affiliations necessary for democratic political action. Such burdensome tasks are seen to threaten closure–and hence are repudiated.Reinhart Koselleck argues that a legacy of the Enlightenment is the persistence and pathology of utopianism (Koselleck 1988). The tradition of Enlightenment critique arises in the context of political absolutism that is instituted in the wake of religious wars. Setting themselves against the constraining tendencies of absolutism, the Enlightenment thinkers, whose field of action is a “single global world,” engage in a “ceaseless movement” of depersonalized critique within the horizon of an “open-ended future.” This produces a utopian self-conception whereby “modern man is destined to be at home everywhere and nowhere” (Koselleck 1988, 5). The error in this legacy of modernity, according to Koselleck, is that an unpolitical position of utopianism is mistaken as a political position. The Enlightenment thinkers were unwilling to take responsibility for history by formulating concrete policies and goals and designing and joining social and political institutions; instead they resorted to polar positions as persons who negate present realities and dream of a future they are powerless to realize.In their espousal of utopianism, some postmodern feminist narratives again betray their fidelity to a concealed Enlightenment narrative of development. A strand of postmodern feminist rhetoric not only reduces advancement to a “way out” of a confining reality–in this instance patriarchy and not the monarchical absolutism decried by the Enlightenment philosophers–it also forbids the representation of the elsewhere evoked by this reference to a “way out.” In other words, fixation on a “way out” forbids the sketch of a “way in” to somewhere else. Describing the efforts of French postmodern feminists, Drucilia Cornell writes: “Utopian writing reaches out to the impossible in the flight from the enclosed reality of the [masculine] symbolic…. Utopian thinking demands the continual exploration and re-exploration [sounds like Western expansionism] of the possible and yet also the unrepresentable” (Cornell 1991, 163,169; italics added). The monotonous ode to mobility or dislocation as the measure of development precludes the representation of an alternative development. Luce Irigaray advises women: “… don’t congeal your dreams or desires in unique and definitive representations. You have so many continents to explore [also sounds like Western expansionism] that if you set up borders for yourselves you won’t be able to `enjoy’ all of your own `nature'” (Irigaray 1985, 204). Lucy Sargisson, who draws upon both deconstruction and French feminism, argues that “most (contemporary) feminist utopian works lack a sense of stagnancy, being instead fluid and dynamic constructions.” Over and over again she stresses the appropriate open-endedness of feminist utopianism and celebrates the transgressive nature of feminist texts which subvert “closure.” These characteristics are set in opposition to the closure of patriarchy which seeks coherence, unity, sameness, and perfection (read: closure). In order to counter this masculine economy, Sargisson enjoins feminists to repudiate all attempts to draw a “blueprint” for the future and instead to revel in a “feel of dislocation” (Sargisson 1996, 20, 52, 59, 54).

34 thoughts on “Throwdown- Reps K Legit

  1. ma

    i'll assume the alt is something like 'reject the affs lens of security'
    pretnd aff is food stamps w/ a heg impact (obesity i/l)

    perm – do plan and reject our security lens – reps may be important but your ev just says they construct how we view the world – giving food stamps to poor ppl is in no way influenced by our realist view of ir so their ev has 0 relevance in this context – we can still give food stamps in the wolrd of the alt
    their arg is like us saying 'play golf w/ green glasses' and they say 'green glasses bad' — that may be so, but your alt to play w/ blue glasses functionaly fiats a different world view which the aff should be able to permute bc hteir own arg proves that worldviews aren't/shouldn't be stable

  2. Bill Batterman

    Scott—would it be fair to use ma's hypothetical when constructing aff responses? (Aff: Food Stamps with a hegemony impact; Neg: Security K of heg impact)

    If yes—and if aff has another impact (let's say hunger/right to food), then:

    Permute: the USfg should <do the plan> and the judge should endorse the plan to reduce hunger/uphold the right to food but not to sustain U.S. hegemony. Even if the neg wins that the 1AC representations of security are undesirable, they have not proven that the *plan* is undesirable—voting negative is not required to "reject security discourse" (whatever alt text is). The neg's "reps key" cards are not reasons to reject the plan if it is endorsed not to sustain hegemony but to reduce hunger/uphold the right to food.

  3. Scott Phillips


    That example is OK, but probably better for the neg than most reps K's since "security" args can easily be explained as an "impact turn" to most hegemony advantages, thus they are easier tied to the plan than others.

    A better example might be the K of eco doomsaying, since that does not question the truth value of the advantage claim (usually).

  4. Bill Batterman

    And: the role of the ballot should be to determine whether the USfg should enact the plan. The judge should evaluate the negative's arguments through the lens of policy relevance: if their arguments—including their criticism of our representations—do not constitute a reason that the USfg should not enact the plan, then the judge should vote affirmative.

    Alternative frameworks cannot overcome the trap of incommensurability—it is impossible to "weigh the K vs. the case" without agreement over the framework for comparison. Policy relevance is the most desirable lens for the judge to adopt: it acknowledges the relevance of critical theory while avoiding disadvantages to "ceding the political".

  5. ma

    @ sp "“security” args can easily be explained as an “impact turn” to most hegemony advantages"

    would the alt preclude hegemony? if not, you're probably in trouble – if so, then the perm sovles the 'impact turns' — if "green glasses" make us view the world via threat con the perm's use of the alt's "blue glasses" would solve — its like counterplanning offshore balancing v. a heg adv – the perm obvs solves

  6. Scott Phillips

    Since the K does not indict the plan, the alternative is not an "alternative to the plan", the alternative would/should be an alternate way of representing things. Therefore to test competition with the plan is silly.

  7. Bill Batterman

    Representations must ultimately be leveraged toward the enactment of policy—if the judge concludes that the plan is a desirable policy, s/he should vote affirmative.

    Roger E. SOLT, Debate Coach at the University of Kentucky, 2004
    [“Debate’s Culture of Narcissism,” Contemporary Argumentation & Debate, Volume 25, September, Available Online via Communication & Mass Media Complete, p. 50-51]
    A focus on the "representations" employed in debates has, of late, to some extent displaced the previous concentration on discourse. While discourse focuses on the words employed, representations involve the broader images that those words create and convey. Nonetheless, the problems associated with representational focus in policy debate are rather similar to those linked to discursive focus. First, if one is proposing a plan of action, the representations employed are secondary and instrumental means of justifying an ultimate policy conclusion. Thus, even if representations are in part discredited, the overall policy [end page 50] conclusion may hold. Second, representations are always partial, always limited by personal perspective, and always prone to interpretation. There is no such thing as an absolutely clear, perfectly accurate representation of something. We thus can quibble endlessly about the correctness of an image. But the fact remains that we are forced ultimately to act on the basis of imperfect depictions and recognitions.

  8. Bill Batterman

    @Scott Phillips

    Probably a 3 or 4. Its usefulness stems from its brevity and efficient summarization of two "stock" reps K answers. Debaters could obviously make both component arguments themselves, but reading the card has the advantage of appealing to Solt's authority (for some judges, that's worth something; for others, not so much).

  9. ma

    "Therefore to test competition with the plan is silly."

    that's not a reason the 1ac's world view can't change – that oslt card and your 1nc reps matter card say that reps are fluid – why shouldn't the 1ac's reps be allowed to be altered

  10. Whit


    This judge choice stuff is loony tunes. I'll have more time to talk in depth about this after our district tournament this weekend, but I'll just say few quick things now for other people to think about/discuss.

    1. It's aff conditionality. You can try to dance around it all you want, but your explanations are likely to be cornier and more contrived than the K debates you're trying to avoid. You can't kick your heg advantage if I straight turn it with heg bad. The same should be true if I kritik it.

    2. There is a direct link to the plan. If the aff saw fit to use an advantage as a justification in round, it is likely that the same justification would be used to get the plan through congress or presented to the court via amicus curae. If government officials use the same 'reps' while debating the plan, then the K is just like a politics da.

    3. To pretend that this is a neutral move is ridiculous. Ignoring bad reps is tantamount to endorsing them. You're just essentially saying, "I don't care about the K." If that's how you feel, then put it in your judge philosophy. "Don't read the K in front of me." Lots of other judges do it. Judge choice may seem like a clever new theory, but its just another manifestation of anti-K backlash amongst policy debaters/judges.

    4. Judge Choice = Bush. "Sure there weren't any WMD's, but isn't it sweet that we liberated all those people?" Nuff said.

  11. ma

    @ whit –

    1 – its not a straight turned adv because the alt fiats out of the straight turn

    2 – def not a link to the plan – the perm would alter justifications PRIOR to enactment bc the perm would be the policy being presented / voted on

    3 – ignoring bad reps is not responsive – you can make reps args, but can't fiat out of them w/ an alt – otherwise the aff should perm

    4 – not judge choice – the perm is a diff lens to view enactment of the plan – 1ac do foodstamps cuz of heg – K of heg – perm do foodstamps cuz ppl need food – i'm not sure why that -> iraq

  12. Bill Batterman


    (NBD if you can't respond right away—we can maybe do a "pro & con" feature post together next week)

    It's not an anti-"K" stance, it's an anti-"Ks that are not intrinsic to the aff" stance. Disregarding representations that are proven undesirable is not tantamount to endorsing them and indeed does a great deal of damage to the aff case (one or more of the reasons they offered to support plan enactment are disregarded, making their case for change substantially weaker). Elevating such arguments to the level of a voting issue is not necessary to acknowledge their utility/legitimacy.

    Your analogy to politics disadvantages is interesting and requires a longer discussion (ultimately one needs to resolve which competing view of the judge/"fiat" is most productive).

    Regarding Iraq, the analogy breaks down because we are evaluating policies *in advance of their enactment*. If there are two reasons to overthrow the Hussein regime—one based on the presence of WMDs and one based on the liberation of the oppressed—opponents of regime change need to beat *both* arguments. Demonstrating that there are no WMDs in Iraq is not sufficient to defeat the "liberate the oppressed" justification and therefore is not sufficient to disprove the desirability of regime change.

  13. Scott Phillips


    Your point about Iraq is a distinction without a difference. The point is the invasion of Iraq was not done for any of the stated reason, a non stop conveyor belt of BS justifications is neither educational nor desirable. In your characterization where the neg has totally dropped a completely different advantage the aff should argue those positive reps o/w the negative reps instead of saying the judge should chose…

  14. Bill Batterman

    @Scott Phillips

    Affirmative teams don't present "non stop conveyor belts" of justifications. They're also not the Bush Administration. "BS justifications for war are bad—Bush Administration proves" is not a reason that enacting a policy for one reason instead of another is bad.

    The *reason* those positive reps outweigh the negative reps is precisely because they motivate the enactment of the plan. "Weighing" is only sensible if the lens is policy relevance: "It's really bad to enact a policy based on eco-doomsaying rhetoric" cannot be "weighed" against "It's really good to enact the plan because it will reduce hunger"—the two propositions are incommensurable.

    The "weigh good reps vs. bad reps" framework when divorced from the plan results in terrible decision-making. "It's a really bad idea to adopt policies based on eco-doomsaying, so much so that it isn't worth taking the risk of adopting a policy that attempts to reduce hunger" is silly *because there IS a plan*. It's not a question of which justifications for a policy *in general* are more desirable or undesirable but whether *the aff plan is desirable or undesirable* BASED ON the justifications provided by both teams.

    Basically, there's no link to the "conveyor belt" disad but there is a huge link to the "good decision-making" advantage.

  15. Scott Phillips


    I will respond to "incommensurability"/policy relevance in the throwdown, but your response/claim that there is "no link" either proves your ideological blinders are affecting your judgement, or you are being obtuse.

    In your model of debate the aff can present a justification, concede its ridiculous/bad, and simply read another. The "link" to the bush analogy is that the affirmative is never held responsible for any of their bad justifications- they are a no cost option to introduce. So regardless of how bad, racist, offensive etc. the aff is never held responsible.

    You continually fall back on an extreme example, the aff has presented 2 justifications and the neg has exclusively K'ed one of them with no interaction between the 2, and yes that example does make your position seem somewhat reasonable. However, outside of that isolated example it is incoherent. Your explanation of how the impact analysis would go is laughable. Obviously if the debate was limited to being only that bad you would be correct. However, your caricature is disproven by many debates that go on now on this very issue. So the negative would say

    "Apocalyptic environmental rhetoric shuts down democratic discourse and obliterates pro-environment groups, the impacts to this are XYZ"

    And the aff would say

    "Failure to solve our other advantage would result in impacts ABC"

    And then they could (shockingly) debate those impacts out. This can occur without any arbitrary construction of "policy relevance". It's possible that even though giving food stamps for fruits and vegetables may stop deaths from hunger, but if the justification offered is one that legitimizes violent militarism that we may have to not do it. You are right its not in "general", its about the justifications the aff has CHOSEN to offer.

  16. Roy Levkovitz

    @David Mullins
    This is ironic and ridiculous considering the lefties who say the aff must defend their plan vs reps Ks yet backtrack like it is their job when they are aff. Us reasonable ones will defend our plan vs reps ks when we don't have to waste 3 mins of cross-x establishing what it is the hippies are willing / not willing to defend with their aff, and not have to read framework and extend it in the block to hege against the 1ar abdicating the aff.

    Reps Ks rant, will follow my upcoming baker post

  17. Bill Batterman

    @Scott Phillips

    (We should do a formal back-and-forth column/discussion about the judge choice issue; our intuitions on this dispute are both strong but they are leading us to opposite conclusions. I don't want to turn this Reps K throwdown into a judge choice throwdown—there are obviously many other aff arguments that need to receive a fair hearing.)

    Returning to the larger Reps question (and you can feel free to save your answer for the formal Throwdown post):

    Your hypothetical:

    So the negative would say

    “Apocalyptic environmental rhetoric shuts down democratic discourse and obliterates pro-environment groups, the impacts to this are XYZ”

    And the aff would say

    “Failure to solve our other advantage would result in impacts ABC”

    1. Can the neg advocate the enactment of the plan for the second reason but not the first (hunger not eco-doomsaying)? This seems wrong from a fairness perspective but it makes sense from a logical decision-making standpoint (this is essentially "judge choice" but as a justification for a neg ballot instead of an aff ballot).

    2. "It’s possible that even though giving food stamps for fruits and vegetables may stop deaths from hunger, but if the justification offered is one that legitimizes violent militarism that we may have to not do it."

    That's the part that doesn't make any sense to me. How could "bad justification" ever outweigh "good action"? The only way this can make sense to me is if the question the judge resolves is shifted away from one of policy enactment to something else. But if the judge is tasked with determining whether the plan should be enacted, then I can't conceive of a situation where "reps DA" outweighs "policy ADV". If that's my "ideological blinders" speaking, I guess you've got some more work to do in persuading me.

  18. Scott Phillips

    "The only way this can make sense to me is if the question the judge resolves is shifted away from one of policy enactment to something else."

    This has been my point all along on judge choice Bill- your justification is the fact that you have already presupposed plan focus.

    The neg should not be able to enact the plan with different reps because entirely plan inclusive negative advocacies are bad, not because reps K's are bad.

  19. Bill Batterman

    @Scott Phillips

    That makes sense to me. The strategy that I cannot wrap my head around, I guess, is the "reps K as a reason to reject the plan" strategy. In most reps K debates, the argument is presented as a reason to reject the plan so as to avoid the negative consequences of the objectionable reps (extinction, serial policy failure, no v2l, etc.). None of these "reps DAs" make sense if the debate is about whether the plan should be enacted by the USfg.

    I'm certainly willing to evaluate arguments from different perspectives/frameworks. Maybe the way we discuss environmental issues IS more important than a discussion of what social services policy the USfg should enact in a given instance. If that's the case, the neg should make that argument instead of attempting to fit the square peg of the Reps K into the round hole of policy relevance.

  20. Scott Phillips


    It seems the neg usually does make that argument- they say reps come first/outweigh. I guess I don't understand how they are the ones forcing when you say "Your argument must fit this mold".

  21. ma

    @ bil – even if the debate is not solely about the plan, winning the negative impacts to reps o/w the case IS a reason to

    agree w/ scott – ppl do say reps first – but should probably counter w/ a more coherent FW arg – debate isn't about an 8 word plan – it's about inculcating a coherent worldview that incorporates multiple perspectives (poilcy / reps etc..)

  22. Faber

    <blockquote cite="#commentbody-2801">
    Bill Batterman :
    @Scott Phillips
    That makes sense to me. The strategy that I cannot wrap my head around, I guess, is the “reps K as a reason to reject the plan” strategy. In most reps K debates, the argument is presented as a reason to reject the plan so as to avoid the negative consequences of the objectionable reps (extinction, serial policy failure, no v2l, etc.). None of these “reps DAs” make sense if the debate is about whether the plan should be enacted by the USfg.

    This ('reason to reject the plan') is false. Based on alternative texts, the neg almost uniformly presents the K as a reason to "reject the affirmative". You presuppose that this means 'reject the plan' because you are reasoning from the premise of policy relevance, but the negative is contesting that premise.

    1) Permute – do the plan and reject ecodoom representations in all other instances.
    Intrinsic permutation legitimate against the reps K: Neg is in a double-bind: Either they generate a link against the plan text in a vaccuum, or the link is not intrinsic to the plan. If the K is not intrinsic, it is logically impossible to answer it with a non-intrinsic perm. Fairness, via reciprocity, demands the aff get intrinsic permutations to test the link. They need a reason rejecting the aff specifically is key.

    2. Permute – Do plan and reject ecodoom representations. There are infinitely many future instances of eco-doom representations. This presents a double-bind – either a) the impacts of eco-doomsaying are inevitable after performing the alternative due to other instances of that rhetoric, in which case the advantages of plan outweigh the terminally non-unique impacts of the K, or b) the alternative is sufficient to counter the cumulative impact of those other instances of ecodoom rhetoric. This means the cumulative impact is some finite amount that the alt can fix (it is impossible to be equal to an infinite amount, so the alt couldn't counterbalance it). If this is true, the permutation will solve just as well, because the initial term of a series that converges does not affect the convergence of the series. IE, if the alt can solve all the impact of those infinitely many instances, having one more or less instance at the beginning will not affect solvency.
    Stewart, 7
    [James, PhD Math from Univ of Toronto, Professor of Math at McMaster University, Fellow of Field Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences
    Single Variable Essential Calculus: Early Transcendentals, Thompson Brooks/Cole, 2007, p 426]
    A finite number of terms doesn't affect the convergence or divergence of a series. For instances, suppose that we were able to show that the series [Sigma from n=4 to infinity](n/(n^3 + 1)) is convergent. Since [Sigma from n=1 to infinity](n/(n^3 + 1)) = 1/2 + 2/9 + 3/28 + [Sigma from n=4 to infinity](n/(n^3 + 1)), it follows that the entire series [Sigma from n=1 to infinity](n/(n^3 + 1)) is convergent.

  23. David Mullins

    @Roy Levkovitz
    I feel I have wronged you in some way.

    Imagine two plans, or bills, textually identical in congress:
    The USFG should provide welfare benefits to people under the poverty line.

    Bill #1, the debate on fox news and in congress goes like this:
    "Poor people=druggies and robbers- to help our policeforce and protect our children we need to give them a chance to momentarily get going."

    Bill #2 is justified in this fashion:
    "we have compassion for all living things, and poor individuals are disproportionately facing the agony of day-to-day poverty."

    The way that these two bills would be implemented on the ground is radically, radically different. As someone who actually receives TANF and food stamps, I can tell you that the rules for distribution are incredibly flexible. Case workers can cut off aid at their disgression (though they usually don't for white people who don't do drugs), and they have a wide array of discretionary powers to use on people living in poverty.

    Under the justification of bill #1, random searches, drug testing, house surveillance, viewing of criminal records etc. to ensure the effective use of the welfare benefits given in the bill would all be much more likely.

    The way the ethos of the plan infects the bill is something that is totally lost on a plan-only framework. It is simply not the case, especially on this topic, that policy implementation follows inexorably from policy statement. Historical examples abound: desegregation, section 8 housing, welfare reform and more all had flexi-enforcement that made the way the policies were justified the guiding principle of implementation in the mind of caseworkers who are given basically free reign with no credible legal challenges over how they use their power. A no reps allowed framework then, or plan focus or judge choice or whatever you want to call it then cannot even describe what the plan does, meaning if the negative wins a link argument like this, there is literally no standard supporting judge choice that isn't turned.

    It is easy to imagine a world where this could make a well-conceived plan into a bad idea- the plan becomes a way to jail and discipline poor individuals rather than to help them. This makes the "do the 'plan' under different reps" argument a bit of a misnomer- the plan would not be the same, the plan *statement* would be the same, but what actually happens would be very different, meeting virtually every standard of a competitive advocacy.

  24. Roy Levkovitz

    @David Mullins
    Lol not at all, I actually enjoy judging you and John, but I hope you understand that it is comical that some of those same teams who are unwilling to defend and maintain some stable ground would be making the appeal that the aff must defend their reps? I know having seen you all on the aff, you all defend more then the average bear but some of your comrades on the left do not

  25. Hunter Brooks

    1. I've been off the circuit for a while. This "judge choice" argument is the first novel framework argument I've heard on either side in a very long time. I don't know who came up with it, but there's a synopsis here by Casey Harrigan (linked below) that was very helpful to me in understanding it. I am not sure yet whether I agree with all the premises, but one claim I definitely agree with is that the burden we place on the aff in representation k debates stems from an illegitimate importation of the language of counterplan theory:

    2. In my opinion, representation kritiks are like theory arguments. Most of the time, "reject argument not team" is an adequate answer. (So if the neg proves some permutation is a sever perm, that means the judge doesn't evaluate the perm.) Sometimes, it is not. (Occasionally affs manage to win debates on conditionality. Most judges think extra-T is a voter.)

    The team reading two advantages, of which the kritik indicts one, should probably still win the debate, since the judge should reject the argument and not the team.

    I have often wished that negative teams would explicitly read their representation kritiks as theory arguments, but I have come to accept that this won't happen.

    3. I'm unpersuaded by the "what if the aff says really egregiously offensive stuff" argument. In that hypothetical world I think most judges should, and would, probably intervene. The alternative where it's up for debate is absurd, since it means that if the aff is better than the neg then they should be allowed to say really egregiously offensive stuff. But if you think the non-interventionist principle is more important, then I think the "reps kritiks are theory arguments" point of view works here since this would be a case where it makes sense to reject the team and not just the argument. Note that the "judge choice" principle wouldn't work here, since the offensive language might not be part of any advantage claim by the aff at all. But again, I don't think this is a good argument against that principle, since I think the judge should intervene.

  26. Kevin Hirn

    @David Mullins

    I think we had a similar running discussion on this exact issue at Emory. My opinion still hasn't really changed. Competition can not be garnered off of a representation, and I don't think a "reps first" framework can logically exclude consideration of the affirmative's other advantages. Evaluating the impact of one representation versus another makes very little sense without examining the effects of each representation (i.e. a normal kritik debate that examines the effect of a plan versus the effect of an alternative).

    The model of competition you provided is analogous to a process counterplan. The example you provide for implementation of the plan (in which one allows social worker flexibility and one does not) can logically be taken to extremes that justify PICing out of every process the affirmative can be linked to. Even if there is some tenuous link (i.e. this one card you read has a non-environmentally-friendly rep, hence the plan isn't an environmental ethic, hence it would likely not be printed on recycled paper, CP – print the bill of the plan on recycled paper), the tenuous link is not likely going to be supported by evidence and can be mangled to force the aff to defend a ton of things they should not have to defend. This is not the same as "defending the affirmative" – small details in the realm of implementation could very possibly serve as links to kritiks and disadvantages, but should not serve as a basis for competition for the same reason pocket passage, sunset provisions, and other process CPs are not competitive. When packaged as an advocacy, this ensures a rigged impact calculus for the negative and is impossible for the affirmative to generate literature-based answers against.

    If you had evidence comparing the likelihood of policies that use stigmatizing language to have social worker flexibility vs. policies with positive representations, that would perhaps provide a logical standard for competition. In the absence of such evidence, it is unreasonable in my opinion to allow a counterplan or alternative to compete off of it.

    This leads me to the second component of my argument. 95% of affirmatives do not have an advantage premised off of marginalizing the poor, fearing the poor, etc. Even if there are some overtones or assumptions that the aff should not have made, there is no reason that the judge should be forced to prioritize those negative representations over the positive representations of the plan. That's an arbitrary standard that forces the affirmative to have a robust defense of every word in every card of the 1ac in and of itself while not relying on other parts of the affirmative to generate offense.

    The plan text provides a compromise in this sense – it provides a stable locus that the negative can generate offense off of (while CPing out the rest), and get guaranteed links off of. It also allows the affirmative to generate a robust defense of each mechanism and idea conveyed in their plan text in a vacuum – they chose to put it there, while avoiding the impossible standard of requiring offense of every meta-assumption every author can be contrived to link to (even though a defense of these standards is still necessary to most likely beat these kritiks).

    Where does this model of competition and link generation leave the negative? I think it's fully possible to win an affirmative is a bad idea because of the poor assumptions behind it (the majority of affirmative rounds I have lost this year have been for this reason). The negative should need to either win an impact framework (i.e. deontology) that prioritizes the impacts of those poor assumptions OR win that those poor assumptions provide an impact that turns and outweighs the case (which is also very possible – still using the above example, mean social workers probably cut off service and do not correctly dole out social services). I think that is a more fair division of ground that solves the reasons a representation-based focus should be considered. Just talk about how the reps negatively impact the policy and make it a bad idea.

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