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Slusher, Bryant, Korcok, and alternate agent counterplans
On Mon, 14 Jul 1997 email@example.com wrote:
> On Sun, 13 Jul 1997, MWBRYANT@aol.com wrote:
> >Kudos to Korcok for some well-written and thought-provoking posts! Some quick
> >questions for either "the Big K" or any of the other quickly emerging
> >advocates of this new perspective:
> >1. Who spells out the appropriate decision-maker? Given that most of our
> >topics spell out resolutional action on the part of the USFG, couldn't this
> >be anyone? I can see arguments that can easily be launched justifying a
> >decision through the specific prism of a virtually endless gamut of actors -
> >executive, legislative, judicial, public citizen, community opinion leader,
> >corporation decision-maker, philosophical critic, etc.
> I agree with this 100%. Why does the decission maker have to be limited to the
> resolutional actor? It seems that is a conclusion some are drawing from this.
> Why can't we just agree that the critic needs to play the role of decission
> maker in general when it comes to questions of opportunity cost....which is what
> happens now anyway. Why limit it to the rez actor. I don't even really think
> the literature in the essay goes far enough to make that a really tight
> argument. It mearly implies a decission maker deciding between two courses of
> action which may exclude a decission maker deciding between two actors to take
> the same action....but I wouldn't say the analogy is solid there to really
> exclude alternate agent counterplans.
I don't see in any way how korcok's papers limit the decision maker to
the resolutional actor, which seems to be where most of the confusion
lies. The decision maker is that entity which exerts the decision making
influence over the resolutional actor, who decides whether the action
occurs or not. The decision maker has a sphere
of influence directing choice and control over a domain including the
resolutional actor, but certainly not limited to it.
Resolved: that the Cornell debate team Cole and Wojtysiak should attend
more midwestern tournaments.
Plan:cole and wojtysiak go to the Saluki
The resolutional actor is the team of Cole and Wojtysiak.
The decision maker would be that entity who decides whether or not this
team goes to SIU.
The decision maker could be:
Cole and Wojtysiak themselves (and the case would be that the decision maker
is indeed the resolutional agent.)
OR the Director of Forensics
OR the head of the Communication department(the boss of the the DOF)
OR the Dean of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell (where the Comm.
department is which is where the debate team is grounded.)
Each of these, listed in increasing power in the college hierarchy, could be
appropriate decision makers and each could
view the resolution differently, and therefore see different appropriate
opportunity costs. Who the decision maker is allows for different
the answers to the resolution, according to these decision makers could be:
Cole and Wojtysiak:Yes
DOF:No, due to lack of team funds (that's a long and expensive trip)
Head of Comm:No, but the team of Larocca and Cohen should go, because
Cole and Wojtysiak are not Comm. majors and Larocca and Cohen are, which
will make the department look good.
In the Case of DOF, it's a SQ/disad combination that beats the plan.
With the Comm. Head, it's a counterplan. In either case, the scenario of
plan loses because the opportunity cost of going is greater than any
advantage of going.
As you can see, the above example does allow for alternate agent
counterplan if the decision maker has influence over others besides the
> Bear's right though. EVEN IF I'm wrong the limit isn't solid. In the case of
> alternate agent counterplans a USFG actor could decide to forego USFG action and
> relinquish the course of action to the government of Japan or the UN or whatever
> to do the plan. In the end the role of the decission maker is vague and
> limitless. As it should be.
Why should the role of the decision maker be vague and limitless? Who
the decision maker is, and what role that decision maker has certainly
seems to decide the scope of negative fiat and, by extension, what
counterplans can be offered.
In my example above, if the decision maker is the debate team of cole and
wojtysiak, certainly the counterplan that cohen and larocca go instead
cannot be posited because cole and wojtysiak have NO authority over
larocca and cohen. But, if the decision maker is the Comm. head, who
does have authority over this team, the c/p stays.
To my knowledge, there is no decision maker who has the authority to
choose whether Japan or the US act. Therefore, a Japan C/P would seem
illegitimate. Let me illustrate:
R:that the US fed'l gov't should increase humanitarian aid to a Southeast
Plan:US gives lots of money to Myanmar to build homeless shelters.
C/P:Japan gives lots of money to Myanmar to build homeless shelters with
a spending da that does not outweigh homeless harms (default to SQ means
aff wins) but does give a clear net benefit to C/P(if neg gets fiat, neg
Decision maker:Anyone who has the authority to direct US aid to Myanmar is
Since it has been accepted as a given that the c/p has no propensity,by
presenting this counterplan, you are asking the US to not give aid to
Myanmar when Japan isn't going to do it, when there is no proof that
Japan is even considering doing it, and call it negative fiat, so you can
do it. How does that make any sense? No rational decisionmaker would
EVER not do a good action because someone else isn't going to do it.
How do you justify getting that infinite scope of negative fiat? Mike is
the only one I can see who is attempting a grounded, acceptable
limitation, and that don't include this.
One additional thought:
What if the negative presented, along with this counterplan, a piece of
evidence that says that if the US does not act, then Japan will? In
this case, I think the negative does get fiat. Now, the decision maker
does have the option of seeing that if the US does not act, Japan will.
The decision maker is not deciding that Japan will act directly, but only
stopping the US from acting, therefore allowing Japan to act. Japan
acting becomes a viable alternative, and something to consider in the
decision making calculus. C/P stays in the round.
I think this evidence is different from the US "leans" on Japan ev. that
Prof. Bryant alludes to in his recent post. Under this theory, I would
posit that the decision maker would have to examine the potential
consequences of this "leaning" effect. The CP would have to be
something like:US does not act and leans on Japan to get them to act.
The CP text would not be:Japan acts, US doesn't
Sure, the CP gets fiat. The decision maker can make the US can lean all it
wants. Does the c/p solve aff harms? That depends on the evidence. If it
says that if the US does lean on Japan, Japan will act immediately. Hey,
cool beans, neg
solves all the case harms and avoids nasty spending d/a. But, what if
the evidence isn't so good, what if the US has only a 20% chance of
convincing Japan to act. The decision maker would have to examine the
potential consequences of this "leaning" effect, weigh the 20% chance of
solvency versus the potential of the spending d/a and decide that way.
So, at least two options for alternate agent C/P's exist:
The case where the decision maker has authority over other potential actors
Evidence indicates an alternative agent's action should concern the
relevant decision maker's scope.
Who that decision maker is, I think, is up to further debate.
Just my humble opinion, too.
Archive created by Jonathan Stanton (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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