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RobGlass

Is it acceptable to read a card containing an argument that the author Now disavows?

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So, if you haven't listened to the latest episode of the debatercast you totally should. It's a really fascinating interview and Jeffrey Lewis is just the best.

 

But I've been thinking about a part of the interview a lot since then. In the discussion Jeffrey Lewis is broadly negative towards politics disads and then discusses the winners win Norm Ornstein card, and mentions that Ornstein no longer believes that argument to be true. If that's correct, is it okay to keep reading the Ornstein card?

 

My original thought was "of course" and that what the debater is defending is the argument (claim-warrant-impact) in the card and not the author.  BUT that begs the question as to why read the card then? If the argument in it is good on its own merits the structure of the card is unnecessary _except_ if the debater is trying to add extra weight to the argument by using the authority of an expert's opinion. If that's true, and it's also known that the author now no longer believes in that argument, then reading for card from that author seems disingenuous at best and outright dishonest at worst.

 

I think this would be an interesting discussion, and I'm curious what the rest of the community thinks about this.

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Imo I think the new evidence where an author backtracks or changes their mind needs to have a warranted reason why their previous claim is wrong. Presumably they were a qualified author when they wrote the first piece of evidence, so it's not like the weight of their reasoning is just flat out invalidated. Though I think the really right move is read a new card when someone makes that argument.

I think that cards are still necessary. The value of evidence authors is that they are qualified sources who are presumably knowledgeable and well informed to make a point. Qualification of evidence is just another warrant to a claim, which also means that can be a meaningful tiebreaker in a close debate.
I do believe that debaters can make meaningful arguments comparable to evidence when they use reason and examples. But in a debate where it's well debated on both sides and seems even in argumentation, I would lean toward evidence on that argument, simply because authors are likely more qualified/informed/well-studied on a given subject. Qualification of author is just another warrant to a claim, so I would evaluate it as such.

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I disagree with the premise that an author is only allowed one absolute position on an issue. I say "heg good" one debate and "heg bad" the next, backing it with warranted arguments both times. An author can make arguments for extremely inconsistent ideas without having to have a strict and static personal position reflected in every argument. I certainly think one team can argue that the change in the other team's author's core argument undermines the ethos of the argument, but by no means do I think it's illegitimate to read old evidence.

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On 9/13/2018 at 11:24 AM, ColinD said:

I think that cards are still necessary. The value of evidence authors is that they are qualified sources who are presumably knowledgeable and well informed to make a point. Qualification of evidence is just another warrant to a claim, which also means that can be a meaningful tiebreaker in a close debate.

But that's the point. If the warrant is "X Qualified Source Believes this" then to cite this person as believing the argument now when they, in fact, _do not_ seems ethically dubious.   And if the argument is actually warranted then it seems like making that argument yourself without a card should solve the problem. 

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On 9/13/2018 at 4:39 PM, Snowball said:

I disagree with the premise that an author is only allowed one absolute position on an issue. I say "heg good" one debate and "heg bad" the next, backing it with warranted arguments both times. An author can make arguments for extremely inconsistent ideas without having to have a strict and static personal position reflected in every argument. I certainly think one team can argue that the change in the other team's author's core argument undermines the ethos of the argument, but by no means do I think it's illegitimate to read old evidence.

There's a fundamental difference between "Author has written in defence of two ideas in tension with each other" and "Author believed X and now believes Y, but I'm going to ignore that progression and use their defence  of X. uncritically" If the Author has made a clean break from the position they held and you know it then why cite them? If the arg is good surely it's made elsewhere, and if the arg really is obscure enough that this is the only author whose cards are worth using and they've moved on from the argument then perhaps there's a reason they have.

 

Recast a bit, this logic of "the author defended it once so I'm free to use it now" wouldn't fly in serious academic writing, so why should we let it (uncritically) into debate?

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1 hour ago, RobGlass said:

If the Author has made a clean break from the position they held and you know it then why cite them? If the arg is good surely it's made elsewhere, and if the arg really is obscure enough that this is the only author whose cards are worth using and they've moved on from the argument then perhaps there's a reason they have.

This definitely makes sense for why it's not strategic to cite it, but I don't think there's a reason it's illegitimate to do so. I think that "serious academic writing" is a lot different than debate because it's pursuing the truth, not the ballot (and can allow the nuance of an author's change in opinion as opposed to debate world). I also think it could fly in academia if it was mentioned that the author changed their mind.

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7 hours ago, RobGlass said:

But that's the point. If the warrant is "X Qualified Source Believes this" then to cite this person as believing the argument now when they, in fact, _do not_ seems ethically dubious.   And if the argument is actually warranted then it seems like making that argument yourself without a card should solve the problem. 

 

I see where you're coming from but I don't think that's a reason to abrogate the use of evidence.  The function of evidence is to verify claims and even the warrants of claims by using a verified source. Like debaters can comment on things from their own perspective and knowledge of the world, but if they're predicting what the chinese government will do in x situation and the other team reads a card from an IR scholar or Chinese political expert that says "no they won't," the card will almost definitely win because the debater does not have close to those credentials to verify that they have a wealth of background knowledge. It's arbitrary sure. Someone could read z bunch of books and keep up with developments in a field to functionally be an expert on a topic, but that's not verifiable like a degree or work credentials of an author.

 

A source can discredit themselves, but I think that there is a similar threshold for a new piece of evidence from the same author to establish why they were wrong as there would be from an answer written by a different author. I'm excluding the "concludes neg at the end of the article" type cards as those imply that the author did not intend to write evidence in the other way. The author intended to write whatever original evidence in a certain way and made qualified claims. I think that if they change their minds, they should detail why they think things are different. I'm not inclined to hear a one liner card about how they changed their mind on x issue. If Kagan decided to be like "actually I'm not into that whole neocon military force thing anymore, he would have a bit of explaining to do.

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On 9/13/2018 at 7:54 AM, RobGlass said:

So, if you haven't listened to the latest episode of the debatercast you totally should. It's a really fascinating interview and Jeffrey Lewis is just the best.

 

But I've been thinking about a part of the interview a lot since then. In the discussion Jeffrey Lewis is broadly negative towards politics disads and then discusses the winners win Norm Ornstein card, and mentions that Ornstein no longer believes that argument to be true. If that's correct, is it okay to keep reading the Ornstein card?

 

My original thought was "of course" and that what the debater is defending is the argument (claim-warrant-impact) in the card and not the author.  BUT that begs the question as to why read the card then? If the argument in it is good on its own merits the structure of the card is unnecessary _except_ if the debater is trying to add extra weight to the argument by using the authority of an expert's opinion. If that's true, and it's also known that the author now no longer believes in that argument, then reading for card from that author seems disingenuous at best and outright dishonest at worst.

 

I think this would be an interesting discussion, and I'm curious what the rest of the community thinks about this.

LOL my novice time honestly, they gave us a Calabresi 95 card that was like States Bad then Calabresi 15 card States good EVEN OUR CP CARD was the same issue xD

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I think it varies. Like Snowball said, it is possible to write a paper analyzing both sides of the argument, at which point, I think either side of the argument is valid. I also think, however, if an author definitively concludes one way or another, I think that conclusion is what should be considered the side of the argument the author takes.

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On 9/25/2018 at 5:01 PM, Sam_ka$h said:

LOLOLOL , zizek has made so many indicts into so many of his own arguements but cap debates dont end without a mention of his name

zizek is a bad argument though; he endorsed Supreme Leader Donald J. Trump

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20 hours ago, businessmonkey said:

zizek is a bad argument though; he endorsed Supreme Leader Donald J. Supreme Leader Donald J. Trump

i thought he said Supreme Leader Donald J. Trump is necessary for destruction of america

 

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39 minutes ago, Sam_ka$h said:

i thought he said Supreme Leader Donald J. Supreme Leader Donald J. Trump is necessary for destruction of america

 

but is destorying the entire contry really a good idea?

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4 hours ago, businessmonkey said:

but is destorying the entire contry really a good idea?

According to him, probably. Is his method for doing it good? Probably not.

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On 10/1/2018 at 6:58 PM, NickDB8 said:

According to him, probably. Is his method for doing it good? Probably not.

MLs don't have good methods

gotta get that anarchy

also ew Lacanian anaylisis 

how Oepdial

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