After technical difficulties spoiled the 10th episode of The 3NR Podcast—one that we felt was our best effort to date and which will therefore be remembered forever as a lost masterpiece—we knew we needed to bring our “A” games to satisfy the voracious appetites of our loyal listeners. The result is perhaps the longest podcast in human history, clocking in at two hours, 19 minutes, and 58 seconds and chock full of debate-related content.
The episode—officially the tenth, since our previous attempt was never released to the public—features a wide-ranging discussion of topics including:
- The Spirit of Disclosure Award: Should analytical arguments be disclosed? What level of disclosure should be expected? What makes for an effective wiki page? Woodward PP: worst wiki page in the country?
- Flowing: A lost art?
- Should The 3NR create other awards recognizing effective research, innovative strategies, etc.?
- Speaker Points: Are they too high? Were the debaters “back in the day” better than those of today? Is Roy a hopeless curmudgeon or does he have a point? Should we transition to a 100-point or 30/.1 scale?
- Why do 2N/1A’s receive higher points than 1N/2A’s? Should they?
- Low Point Wins: Should they be banned? Scott says yes. Is he right, or are there situations where low point wins make sense?
- Double Losses: Should they be allowed? Scott says yes—we discuss this idea and some alternatives.
- Pairing Criteria: Is the current system (high-low within brackets using high-low adjusted points) effective? Should opponent wins be used to pair debates? Should high-high rounds be more common? Should side constraints be ignored for undefeated teams when pairing the last prelim?
- The Politics Disad: sweet or not so sweet? Should the aff be losing debates to the politics disad? Should negs be relying on it to construct their post-season strategies?
- “The DA Turns The Case”: the last refuge of scoundrels? What can the aff do to protect themselves from “the low risk DA turns the case, I voted neg” decisions?
- Conditionality Gone Wild: is each plank of a multi-plank counterplan conditional? Is it okay to kick independent planks? Whose burden is it to establish the meaning of “conditionality” (or, more generally, the disposition of the counterplan)?
- “A2:” or “AT:” (or “They Say:”) as a label for blocks: which one is best? (Yes, we actually got into an argument about this.)
And several other things that listeners probably don’t care about but might still find entertaining, like openness in Public Forum and the disturbing content of most Dramatic Interpretation pieces.