Shattering The Lens

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Resolved: The United States ought to guarantee universal health care for its citizens.

Resolved: The United States ought to guarantee universal health care for its citizens.

I hate this topic. This should not be a topic at all, let alone an LD topic. It is all sorts of poorly worded. Nevertheless, it’s what we’re stuck with, so let’s break it down.

Parts of Speech

Nouns: United States, universal health care, citizens

Verbs: ought, guarantee

United States - Obviously we know what the United States is. There is no reason to dwell on this definition. Because of the poor wording of the resolution, however, there is tremendous potential for abuse here. The intent of the resolution is clearly to focus on the national government. The question is whether or not the national government to provide health coverage for citizens. Do not try to be sketchy and argue that the state governments will provide it, or that the government will develop employer programs that will provide it. Focus on the philosophical question of whether or not it is a governmental obligation, regardless of the mechanism by which that obligation is carried out.

Universal Health Care – Again, we all know what universal health care is, but there is still a tremendous potential for abuse. Universal health care is, simply put, complete health coverage at no cost to the individual. Again, the particular mechanisms and costs should be irrelevant. The resolution asks the question of whether or not the government should provide it.

Citizens - Again, we all know what citizens are, as defined by the U.S. constitution and its laws.

Guarantee -¬†In this context, guarantee means provide. Essentially, if you’re a U.S. citizen, you will receive universal health care.

Ought – This will be the crux of your case, or at least, it should be. You must develop a framework which you can use to evaluate what government should or should not do. Like resolutions before this, ought should not be defined using a definition at the top of your case. Rather, your value structure will help you determine how we know what a government ought to do.

Alrighty, with those definitions in mind, let’s talk about some potential case positions.

Affirmative

Distributive Justice – Rawls argues that true justice stems from a proper system of distributive justice. Government policy should be predicated about how rights and privileges should best be distributed for all. This evaluation ought to take place behind a veil of ignorance which ignores socioeconomic factors like income or geographical location because that is the only way to ensure a proper distribution. The argument here is that everyone, if placed behind a veil of ignorance, would agree that universal health care is a good thing. If you could wake up tomorrow and be any person in society, you would want to know that your health needs are taken care of. Therefore, proper distributive justice demands that the government provide universal health care for its citizens.

Rights and Obligations – Rights function in accordance with obligations. This is to say that if someone has a right, they must definitely have a corresponding obligation, or a claim that others have on them to act in a particular way. The U.S. government has the right to determine and enforce health policies across the country. It has the right to monetarily regulate the healthcare industry. Therefore, it must necessarily have the obligation to provide health care for its citizens. Otherwise, the right doesn’t really make sense.

Health Care is a Right – I really don’t like this position, but I suppose many people will try to run it. The essential argument here is that health care is a natural right that goes along with the right to life that the government is obligated to protect. If not that, then health care must at least be a positive right which the government ought to provide in order to contribute to societal welfare.

Negative

Health Care is Not a Right - This is the direct opposite of the affirmative position. A government is only obligated, as per the social contract, to protect the negative rights of its citizens i.e. the citizens have protections against infringement by the government. Health care is not such a protection, and therefore, the government has no obligation to provide it.

Universal Health Care Violates Capitalism – The United States economy is predicated upon capitalist notions, theoretically. It operates under the belief that free market forces will result in the best outcomes for consumers and producers. Based upon this reality, the free market ought to dictate how health care pans out in the country. If the government provides it, it will be overstepping its boundaries, and the quality of health care will actually decrease.

Universal Health Care is Unconstitutional - The U.S. constitution does not allow any provisions for the government to actually provide health care. The Commerce Clause does not properly justify such a drastic operation by the government.

I hope these positions help get you started. As always, feel free to comment, and I will get back to you!

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93 Comments»

  Mike wrote @

Hi Im trying to run Governmental Obligation on the aff however i am having a hard time proving why they have the obligation to do so. Any advice?

  Ace wrote @

Hi Mike,

Think about where the government gets its obligations. What is it made to do? Protect rights? Promote welfare? Read Hobbes, Locke, and Rawls. That will help you get started.

  Safari wrote @

Hey, I appreciate your advice especially regarding definition debate, but I’m considering a more radical approach to the affirmative by advocating for socialism.
If I was to make my potential case a math equation, it would look something like this:

Universal health care = Socialism = Societal welfare/Utilitarianism = Government obligation.

The biggest problem I see with this is proving that socialism is an adequate way to provide for the general welfare of US citizens. I’ve gotten away with radical cases in the past. Is this too risky, though? How could I get away with this?

  Ace wrote @

Hi Safari,

Personally, I love the idea. It’s all sorts of awesome. And hey, what’s the fun in debate without some risk? Your logic needs a little work though. Obviously those things don’t all equal one another.

Your first goal should be to develop a value structure. My advice is to go with a value of societal welfare and a value criterion of socialism. This way, you don’t have to worry as much about proving that socialism is the correct way to societal welfare in your contentions. Instead, just build the proof into your value structure.

Then, you can spend your contentions talking about how universal health care brings us closer to socialism, thereby increasing societal welfare.

Good luck!

  Olivia wrote @

I am very interested in the negative position that the government is only obligated to provide positive rights. Other than the main names of Philosophy (Locke, Hobbs) do you have any suggestions for research? On a framwork level, could the social contract theory be a criterion to a value of justice?
I basically working on this topic by my self, I missed team discussion days while on vacation, and would greatly apprechiate any suggestions you can provide.

  Ace wrote @

Hi Olivia,

Keep in mind that the position is that government is only required to provide negative rights. There are a few contract theorists I would recommend studying. Dewey, Senger, and Rawls provide arguments against this position, so it would be good to understand them. Also, I would recommend visiting the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy and reading the entry on Contractarianism.

As far as a value structure is concerned, I would recommend against a VC of the social contract theory. You must be more specific than that, as every theorist has his/her own concept of how the contract operates. So, your VC would be something like, “A Legitimate Social Contract” or “A Balanced Social Contract.”

Let me know if you need anything else.

  Daniel wrote @

Hi,

I was wondering, my case is going with a VC of Utili. Is there any philisophical evidence that I can use to say that, “Hey, if we look to utilitarianism as the vc, then not only will the greatest number benefit, but rights will be protected by protecting life, happiness, health etc. thus having a rights argument on the neg be disproven. Any advice?

  Ace wrote @

Well, if you’re going with a utilitarian system, you should read up on John Stuart Mill and Jeremy Bentham. As far as preempting a rights argument, however, my advice would be not to do it. The utilitarian argument is that you do what is the greatest good for the greatest number. If that means protecting rights, then so be it. If not, then that’s fine as well.

Deontology and Utility are usually at odds, and the only system which incorporates both fairly well is Virtue Ethics. Read up on Aristotle for that.

  Varun wrote @

For the Neg, I’m arguing the maximization of quality. It may sound a bit confusing, but here’s my logic:

If the government takes over the healthcares system, it eliminates competition. If competition between privatized healthcare systems is gone, then quality is decreased.

That is like my VC and the main point in my case because any point for the Neg, I think I can relate it back to this but I have absolutely no idea whatsoever to make Value Premise. Any thoughts?

  Ace wrote @

Hi Varun,

I like the logic of your case. In fact, I think it’s super sexy. For your Value, think about what you’re trying to achieve and how you’re getting there. We understand that free market competition is what you’re using to achieve better quality of healthcare, so something like free market competition should be your VC. You can’t make your value better healthcare because that is too narrow, but what does better healthcare fall under? Societal welfare? Progress? Security? These would all be good values.

Let me know if you have any other thoughts.

  Varun wrote @

Also, can you elaborate on your negative side saying that Healthcare is NOT a right? I think you make a valid point but WHY is UHC not a right?

  Ace wrote @

Rights exist as claims upon others not to do certain things i.e. my right to life exists as a claim on others not to kill me. Others, like the government, are not obligated to give me anything, just to not infringe upon what I have. Therefore, healthcare cannot be a right because it cannot exist as a claim upon anyone else.

  Rachel wrote @

I am writing an affirmative case for ld and i have a value of societal welfare anda vc of moral obligation. Does that make sense? and how can i back that up wth two contentions?

  Ace wrote @

Hi Rachel,

Your proposed value structure can make sense; it all depends on how you define societal welfare and moral obligation, and how you link the two. How does fulfilling our moral obligations lead to societal welfare? How do we determine what our moral obligations are? You haven’t really given me much to work with to give you feedback on.

As far as your contentions, use your value structure to come up with them. Remember that your value criterion is what you use to get to that which you think is most important (in this case societal welfare). So, your contentions need to explain how only an affirmation of the resolution will let this happen. This is to say, in an affirmative world, moral obligations are fulfilled, and societal welfare is achieved. Therefore, we need to affirm. As far as the specific details of your contentions are concerned, I do not provide arguments. Feel free to run ideas by me, and I will give you feedback.

  Rachel wrote @

So i have decided to say that the goverment is obligated to provide health care for the citizens because the want what is best for them. Then i talked about how John Locke’s social contract and how the people give up some of their rights for the protection of the governement.
For my second sub-poit i want to talk about the declation of inerpendence and how it say”Life” and health care is basically the key to it. So how exactly could i incorperate that idea into my argument?

  Ace wrote @

My first question would be why the government wants what’s best for the people? Also, how do we know that universal healthcare is best for the people? What does giving up certain rights have to do with healthcare? What are we giving up in order to receive healthcare?

As far as the declaration of independence is concerned, I would just avoid it and talk about how healthcare is integral to the right to life in general. In order for the government to adequately protect the right to life, it must provide healthcare.

  Rachel wrote @

So I went to practice and changed my vc to social contract but I don’t understand how to use it in my argument. There are many definitions of it and I just want to say that the government has to provide health care to fulfill the social contract. So do I use a general term of the definition or a specific example of it.

  Ace wrote @

That argument seems fine to me. You just need to explain why the social contract means that the government needs to provide healthcare. If you’re using contract theory, your VC shouldn’t just be the social contract. After all, Hitler had a social contract.

Your VC needs to be something like “A Legitimate Social Contract” or “Fulfillment of the Social Contract.” Then, you can explain what it takes to have a good social contract and use that in your contentions.

  Rachel wrote @

Do you ever read people’s cases?

  Ace wrote @

Sure. It usually takes me a couple days to turn around a case critique.

  Rachel wrote @

Could I email you my affirmative case? I finished it but its my first time in debate so I’m not sure if I’m doing this properly.

  Ace wrote @

Go for it. sxa255@gmail.com

  Rachel wrote @

I have shared my case with you on google documents.

  Ace wrote @

I sent back the critique.

  Rodney wrote @

Hi!
i am very interested to see your point on the Commerce Clause and i am using it too, however, the more i write about it the more its not making any sense. it allows for the federal government to regulate trade, so is healthcare a form of trade? and if it is then isn’t universal healthcare legal? its beginning to contradict my neg case. could you help me make sense of this? thanks!

  Ace wrote @

The text of the Commerce Clause is:

[The Congress shall have Power] To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian tribes

This clause does allow the federal government to regulate trade, though I’m curious as to how you’re defining healthcare to be trade? You’re not really trading one good or service for another, nor is it a transaction that occurs across state lines.

The essential argument is that government does not need to provide healthcare to perform any necessary economic functions. Therefore, to do so would be unconstitutional as it is not a power granted to the government.

  Eddie wrote @

I need a 3rd contention for a negative case what would be a topic that I could use, also what could i add to this

All citizens have a right to receive medical aid. Healthcare is a right that goes with the liberty to life clearly stated in the Constitution. This right entitles citizens to medical aid. The United States ought to give universal healthcare to its citizens so they can be medically protected from disasters such as Hurricane Sandy.

  Eddie wrote @

affirmative sorry

  Ace wrote @

Hi Eddie,

I do not provide contentions for students because I want to encourage you to do your own research and develop your own arguments. You didn’t tell me what the rest of your case looks like either, so I couldn’t provide you with the feedback you’re asking for. Remember, a case needs to work together as a cohesive unit.

What do you mean by what you could add? That is just a couple sentences. Is it a contention? An introduction? I don’t know where it fits into your case.

  Annabelle wrote @

I need to write these cases pretty soon but I honestly don’t know where to start.

  Ace wrote @

That’s what the post is for Annabelle lol

The ideas I articulate above should give you a good point to start. You can run your thoughts by me as well, and I will be happy to give you feedback.

  Juan Hernandez wrote @

Ass ^_^

  Ace wrote @

??

  Katt wrote @

I know this sounds bad, but I already have my contentions for my negative cases written, (Lower quality of health care, and that it is not the Gov’ts responsibility to ensure health care) however, I am not quite sure what to put as my V and VC. Help? I have to turn this case in in one hour! -Katt

  Ace wrote @

Hi Katt,

Sorry I didn’t meet the hour deadline you had; your post was a little late lol

I generally do not provide value structures or arguments for students because I want to encourage you to develop your own. Think about what your contentions have in common. It seems to me like you’re arguing that high quality healthcare and proper governmental responsibility are the most important things. So, your value structure should focus on these areas. Ask yourself what you’re trying to achieve and how you’re getting there. That will give you your value structure.

  MeIzCurryMonster wrote @

I have a tournament in 2 days and I need advice on my case. Can I email it to you at sxa255@gmail.com? This is my first time doing LD.

  Ace wrote @

Sure, go for it, though I can’t guarantee I’ll have it back in two days. I’ll do my best.

  MeIzCurryMonster wrote @

i emailed them to you, and there is no guarantee you will do them quickly enough though. Thanks anyways!

  Ace wrote @

Reviewed and returned.

  Angeline wrote @

This is a very general question, but what exactly constitutes a usable value criterion? How broad or specific can it be? I’ve gotten mixed responses from different tournaments and I’m still kind of confused.

  Ace wrote @

Hi Angeline,

There are two types of value criteria which you will generally see.

The first is the most common. It is a means or tool to get to your value. For example, due process is a tool used to attain justice. So, your value structure would be V) Justice VC) Due Process

The second is less common, but in my opinion more effective. It is a weighing mechanism or scale used to evaluate your value. So, if your end goal is to achieve morality, you might evaluate how moral your society is using virtue. So, your value structure would be V) Morality VC) Virtue

Most value criteria are “usable.” You just need to ask yourself what you’re trying to achieve and how you’re getting there. Some value structures I have used in the past are below.

V) Moral Progress VC) Moral Conflict

V) Justice VC) A Balanced Social Contract

V) Governmental Legitimacy VC) Fear

I hope this helps clarify. Let me know if you have any other questions.

  Angeline wrote @

Thanks, that clears things up. In a debate, what’s the most effective way to go about your opponent’s value and value criterion in favor of your own?

  Ace wrote @

There are several ways you can go about attacking your opponent’s value structure. I’ve outlined some good spots to address below.

Before getting to that, though, I want to advise you to pay attention to your opponents’ definitions of their values and criteria. There are tons of definitions for Justice other than giving each their due. Even though your opponent may have the same tag for their value, the actual definition could be entirely different, and you should be aware of that.

1. The VC –> V link – Many people don’t actually use a criterion properly. Often times, the two will end up being the same, or the VC won’t actually lead to the value.

A very common example of this is V) Justice (giving each their due) VC) Protecting Human Rights. If you ask in CX how protecting human rights achieves justice, most people will say that everyone is due rights, so justice requires that they be protected. So, justice is giving each his/her rights, and we do that by giving each his/her rights? See, when you get right down to it, the value and VC are the same. You can establish this in CX and then point it out more explicitly in rebuttal.

2. Their value falls under yours – Values are usually good things. After all, you don’t want to say that you don’t want human rights or justice. Often times, however, it will end up your opponents’ value is a means to get to yours, or a prerequisite. For example, if your value is Justice, and your opponent’s is Governmental Legitimacy, you can explain that legitimacy is a prerequisite to justice. The end goal we’re trying to achieve is still justice, or we would have no reason to seek a legitimate government to begin with.

3. The “Why?” – This is often the most effective technique. Just ask your opponent why we should uphold their value. If they have an answer, it usually has something to do with the wording of the resolution. At that point, you can just point out that your opponent doesn’t really value anything because his value is confined to the context of the resolution.

4. Conflict – LD resolutions, when written properly, pose scenarios of competing values. They often ask you to make a choice between two ends such as justice and societal welfare. If these end up being the values in the round, you should explain why yours should be picked when the two come into conflict.

5. Achieving the Value – It is often effective to point out that your opponent cannot achieve his/her value. I would do this with justice every time. “My opponent can’t achieve his value because he never actually tells you how we determine what everyone is due.” That’s just one example; substitute whatever reason is relevant to your round.

  Angeline wrote @

That really helps me out a lot! Great advice. Could you give me an example of conflict though?

  Ace wrote @

Sure. If your value is justice, and your opponent’s is societal welfare.

You should explain that the resolution asks us to choose between one or the other. Do we do the morally correct thing, or do we make the economically more suitable decision? In your case, you would argue that when the two come into conflict (i.e. you have to pick between them), you will always pick Justice.

  Angeline wrote @

Like how you could argue yours should be picked for the round. Would it always be what achieves the most beneficial outcome or what achieves morality the best that should be picked? Or can it go however you argue it can?

  Ace wrote @

It will go however you want to argue it. Generally, I would argue that striving for my value leads to better outcomes for society as a whole.

  Angeline wrote @

Okay, so I’ve made good progress so far with my speeches. One thing I’v been curious about is the ‘observations’ portion of a speech. I’ve seen several opponents lack any, and I’ve seen some not care about opponent’s observations or call out a lack of observations. What’s the deal with observations? Does the judge look for them specifically?

  Ace wrote @

Observations are not a necessary part of a case, nor are they something which judges look for. Most people don’t use them.

Observations are generally used to frame the round in a particular way that definitions cannot accomplish. For example, an observation might be used to say that ‘United States’ refers to the federal government, so any argument which does not recognize the federal government as the agent of action is not valid.

Most of the time, observations do not need to be addressed. If it does not hurt your position, just say you accept the observation and move on.

Keep in mind that opponents will often try to give you a burden of proof with observations. Do not fight if the burden is not abusive. If the resolution asks you to prove something, and your opponent points out, just accept it and roll with it. It will be much more impressive than fighting the frame.

  Megan wrote @

Hi, :) I am a varsity member (second year), but since last tournament was my first time in LD, my coach out me in novice LD. However, she told me that now i will be moved up to JV LD for the next tournament. Last time as novice LD, i got a 3-1 score. But to be completely honest, im pretty nervous for JV LD. I have friends who are in JV LD and it seems so much more intense than novice LD. Any advice or tips for a first time JV Lder? Like what do i need to know as far as being prepared to perhaps take on a really really good JVer? Please reply! My tournament is next week!!

  Ace wrote @

Hi Megan,

My advice to you is to just relax. Be confident in your abilities, and take the time to understand every in and out of your case. Just don’t let the pressure get to you. You’ll do fine :)

  Omar El-sabrout wrote @

Hi, I wanted to ask you a quick question about how you included John Locke into your Aff, although none of his natural rights have to do with Societal welfare or health care?

  Ace wrote @

Where did I say I included John Locke into my Aff?

  Omar El-sabrout wrote @

When you say to read about John Locke for some tips about natural rights, in your other replies.

  Ace wrote @

That doesn’t mean you can necessarily use Locke in your Aff. It just means that you should read Locke so that you have an understanding of rights and the social contract.

  Omar El-sabrout wrote @

Another interesting question is: How effective would it be to run a devil’s advocate Aff, where my point is to prove that increasing taxes on people to pay for UHC, can be used to pay off the national debt?

  Ace wrote @

So why should we bother to pay for UHC? If the end goal is just paying off the national debt, why don’t we just increase taxes to pay off the national debt?

  PG wrote @

If I emailed you my neg and aff case, would you mind giving them a critique? You gave your email to one of the other responders, so I’m going to send it to that email. I’d really appreciate some help!

  Ace wrote @

I received them. It might take me some time to get to them since the holidays are coming up and what not, but I’ll be sure to get them back to you as soon as I can.

  PG wrote @

Thank you! My tournaments on November 28th so if you could respond by them, that would really help me plan ahead.

  PG wrote @

Hi! Sorry, this is just a reminder that you said you’d look over my speeches. We need have them finished by tomorrow, which I said above. Would it be possible to email your edits tonight?

  Ace wrote @

Just sent them to you. Sorry for the delay; I’ve been really busy lately.

  PG wrote @

Thank you for your advice! I just have one question. I’m trying to restructure my value and value criterion for my aff to include something economic like you said. Would you recommend Keynesian Economic Theory as my VC?

  Ace wrote @

That depends on what your value is and whether or not you’re changing your contentions. You’re thinking about your case as a bunch of different parts. Again, remember that a case operates as a cohesive unit. Everything works together over an underlying logical framework which is represented in your value structure. Think about what you’re saying with your case in more general terms, and your value structure will develop organically.

  Shage wrote @

Hey! I am a senoir in high school and I will be doing my first ever LD on this topic and I was wondering if you could possibly give me some advice on how to approach the topic. I do find LD rather nerve racking and I have always been afraid to try it but its my senoir year so why not…I really need some advice on LD itself as well as the topic. I’d really appreciate some help!

  Ace wrote @

Hi Shage,

As far as topic advice is concerned, just read through my posts to get an idea of how topics are broken down. For a little bit of debate advice, here’s a link to a post I wrote about debate fundamentals http://shatteringthelens.com/2012/02/07/how-to-debate-the-fundamentals/

I’m working on some video tutorials I’ll be posting up as well. If you want actual coaching, I offer that too, but you’ll have to pay for that :P

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

Hi! I was just wondering if you could help me! I’m competing in a Varsity level tournament next weekend and it is my first time doing LD. I am thinking of doing a value of life or societal welfare for affirmative, but I cannot choose. Also, can you explain the Value Criterion to me? I have read a LOT on it, but I still can’t get it. Can you put it in perspective particularly to this resolution? Any random one will do. Thanks!

  Ace wrote @

Hi Damon,

I’ll be happy to explain the VC to you and how it functions. However, I’m going to give you the same advice I’ve given a lot of other students here. Remember that a case works together as one complete unit. Stop thinking about it as separate parts, and you will be able to develop a value structure very easily. The reason you can’t decide between life or societal welfare is because you haven’t thought about what you’re trying to achieve. Are you trying to get to life, or are you trying to get to societal welfare? This will depend on the underlying framework you’ve developed for your argument. So, take a step back, and think about what you’re actually reaching for.

As far as Value Criteria are concerned, there are 2 ways a VC functions.

1. As a means or tool to get to your value. An example of this is V) Justice VC) Protecting Human Rights. Justice is what we want to achieve. We achieve that by protecting human rights.

2. As a weighing mechanism to evaluate how much of your value has been achieved. An example of this is V) Proper Morality VC) Virtue. We want to achieve a proper morality, and the way we measure that is by how virtuous your society members are.

I hope that makes sense. Let me know if you need further clarification.

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

Okay, so for instance, I want to use the value of life, and I was going to focus on the equality of life. No matter how much money you make, you have no right to live anymore than I do *other than natural causes, so what would be a value criterion that kind of focuses on that? And lastly, I have done Public forum through 9th and 10th grade, and I am in this state of mind where I argue like a PF debater. Is there a way I can minimize that?

  Ace wrote @

How about protection of natural rights? It seems to me that you’re striving to protect everyone’s life, and you want to do that by ensuring that everyone is given their proper right to life. You could also make equality of life your value. That would probably be better. Then your value criterion could be something you use to measure the equality of life, like distributive justice.

As far as changing from PF to LD, the biggest challenge debaters usually face is transitioning from primarily evidence based argumentation to logic based argumentation. Remember that statistics and facts do not make arguments for you, and this is particularly true of LD. My advice to you would be to break down the logic of each argument into premises and conclusions. Do this for every argument until you internalize an understanding of how logic operates and you can recognize common logical flaws.

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

And can I use the equality of life for a VC?

  Ace wrote @

Does equality of life fall into one of the two categories of value criteria that I mentioned? Think about whether or not it can lead you to your intended value or measure your intended value. If the answer to either of these is yes, then yes you can. Otherwise, I’d advise against it.

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

Hi again! I have decided to use distributive Justice as my Value, but I am stuck on my value criterion. My contentions have something to do with offering health care around the board to stimulate the low percent of incomes (I can explain more if you’d like) and then I have that if we offer health care step by step, we will eventually cut costs. So I guess the criterion could be something along the lines of creating a more equal playing field? Im not exactly sure. If you could help again, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks!

  Ace wrote @

Hi Damon,

This seems completely different from the case you talked about before. Your contentions are making economic arguments, so it doesn’t really make sense for your value to be distributive justice. How does cost cutting and low income stimulation ensure that rights and privileges are properly distributed?

If those are your contentions, I would recommend a value structure based upon economic theory and societal welfare.

If you’re running distributive justice, you should read up on John Rawls and understand precisely what distributive justice entails, then build a case off of that.

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

Can I give you a copy of my affirmative case to look over? I finished it today. I would need it by friday of this week perhaps? If not, that’s okay too.

  Ace wrote @

You can send it to me, and I’ll do my best to have it back to you by Friday, but I can’t guarantee it.

  Ace wrote @

You can send it to me, and I’ll do my best to have it back to you by Friday, but I can’t guarantee it.

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

I sent it! Anything on or before Friday, complete or not, would be great!

  Ace wrote @

Got it. I’ll do my best to get it to you by Friday.

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

Is there anyway I can talk to you on skype? And is there a price I will have to pay to ask you a few questions?
-Damon

  Ace wrote @

Hi Damon,

I do charge for my Skype coaching and extra one on one attention. Details on my standard rates and packages are available here http://shatteringthelens.com/ld-and-pf-debate-coaching-services/

I do conduct custom instruction upon request, so if you want to discuss rates and what you’re looking for, feel free to email me.

I don’t answer quick questions over Skype just because it really isn’t worth either of our time. You won’t get much out of talking to me for a few minutes, but you will get a lot out of getting coached by me. If you have additional questions, feel free to post them on the blog, and I will do my best to help you out.

  snowangel wrote @

I am desperate for help with my case, I’m not even sure how to make it make sense. Please Help. I have a value of justice and criterion of the protection of individual rights. My contetnions so far are that universal health care sacrifices quality and could result in needless deaths and as for my second one it is that universal health care does not lead to improved health outcomes. (And I’m not quite sure how to elaborate on this.) As for my third its kind of a lost cause saying the government will create absurd bans on things like 16 oz drinks and what not so people stop getting ill and to keep costs down. (If I could any way turn that into the fact that the people will end up paying for “free” health care please advise.) If you could be of any help and reply ASAP I would appreciate it very much!

Also, Aff case uh any suggestions on perhaps “easier” positions.

  Ace wrote @

Your negative case makes sense to me. I would just get rid of your third contention altogether; you don’t need it. Be sure to link your first 2 contentions to individual rights and justice.

As far as the affirmative, read the post above. It has a number of ideas for affirmative positions, and they’re all fairly basic and easy. If you have additional questions or need help, feel free to ask.

  Cristina wrote @

Hello! I’ve competed in several novice tournaments with this resolution, and my debate coach has decided to move me up to JV before the topic ends. One of my main concerns lies with my negative case – I feel that it’s too weak and can easily be broken apart.

My case revolves around a value of liberty and a VC of individual choice concerning health care, but I’m worried that an experienced opponent could rebut it by saying that many universal health care systems, including Canada’s, involve the private sector and do allow a certain range of freedom. I fear they could also argue that individuals give up certain rights in order to benefit a society (paying taxes for public schools, roads, etc.). Do you have any advice in defending my value of liberty despite those attacks? I feel like once an opponent brings up either of those points, my case will fall apart.

Thank you very much for reading!

  Ace wrote @

Hi Cristina,

I’m going to need a little more detail on your case before I can give you adequate feedback. What exactly is your argument? It’s not enough to just tell me what your value structure is :P

  Angelo wrote @

Hey there,

I’ve just finished my neg constructive after not having debated for a few months. Since I’m rusty and have a new, inexperienced coach, I was wondering if you could take a look at it. I have a competition on the 15th and am not desperately worried about where I am–I’ve been writing an extended research paper on the Rawls-Nozick debate, and have placed at some competitions in previous years. To give you a general idea, my value is justice, and my VC is preservation of liberty (I’m taking a libertarian/deontological approach).

Thanks!

  Ace wrote @

Go ahead and send it to me, but I can’t guarantee I’ll have it done by the 15th.

sxa255@gmail.com

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

Hi there! I just want to thank you for reading over my case! I participated in my VERY FIRST Lincoln Douglas tournament last weekend, and I competed in the VARSITY LEVEL and won ALL 4 of my rounds and placed 3rd out of 38! I have my tournament of the Champions Qualifications and just wanted to sincerely thank you for all of the help!

  Ace wrote @

Hi Damon,

I glad to hear you did so well and that I could help. Congratulations :)

  Damon E. Routzhan wrote @

And how much would it cost for you to coach me just to get ready for my district competition? That is Feb 5th and the TOC quals is Jan 4th. I want to be over the top prepared. I want to make it to Nationals, and I will be sure to thank you in my Nationals speech! :D

  Ace wrote @

That would depend on how much coaching you want and how you want it (in person or over the internet). We can discuss rates and things if you send me an email or give me a phone call. I look forward to hearing from you.

  Dahlia a. Ahmed wrote @

Hi, thanks

Your contentions help a lot but i still cant find ligitimate reasons for aff its really hard can you help?

  Ace wrote @

Hi Dahila,

Let me start by saying that the points I have provided above are not contentions, they are frameworks. They are positions that are designed to give you a starting to build your contentions and value structure.

What do you mean by legitimate reasons? I have provided you with three different perspectives above. Are you asking where you can find evidence?


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