Check out the Tournament Ladder

  • Filter by:
  • Pro
  • Draw
  • Con
  • 2 years ago
    • 2 years ago

      Sorry if the final commentary about each contention feels a little rushed, I was running out of time, but would be happy to break down my thoughts more on how each voting issue fit into the provided fw if either of you had a specific question. Great job and good luck!

    • 2 years ago

      @navapanichz Thanks for the honest assessment in the beginning. I do have a couple of questions as to how you came to your conclusions though, yes.

      You mentioned your three voting issues were:

      1. The idea that the united states and other wealthy nations were built on the backs of exploited people. You said my contentions against this did not make sense to you and you would have liked more global perspective. You gave this to pro.

      2. The family planning and other issues in which the same amounts of money can go much further to help people in developing countries; you said that I left this fairly untouched. You gave this to pro.

      3. Foreign aid is unhelpful, in general is not that effective and can be harmful, you said this went fairly unrefuted and that I gave good empirics for it. You gave this to con.

      I will give my questions here in order of the issues they pertain to.

      1. Yes, I did ask my opponent to demonstrate this point, and when she did give examples I once again asked her to provide a connection between the act of exploitation and the need for reparations. So my question is, how did you reason around the example I gave of correcting for history to the beginning of time? The point I made is that placing a moral obligation upon a nation to indefinitely provide reparations to the descendants of people they have wronged creates an impossible requirement that would need to correct for all of history; as most nations, including those recently conquered, have a history of doing so in the past as well; who do the reparations go to? To the first conquered? to the last? to all? How do we actually impose this without logical absurdity? The main thing I begged my opponent to demonstrate is how you can say the act of colonization necessitates reparations from one nation to another without running headlong into this problem; something she failed time and again to do. She asserted over and over in this domain; "I think there's a moral obligation", but ignored my repeated requests for her to demonstrate it. So I'm curious as to why this point went to pro if you can elaborate.

      2. You stated that it was an important and strong distinction for me to early on distinguish that this sort of thing is addressed by charity, not typically by governments and that charity is preferable in this domain. So my question is; how do you say this is unrefuted when I clearly pointed out charitable action as being more efficacious in this realm thus not imposing a need for national foreign aid? So I'm once again curious as to why this point went to pro... if you can elaborate.

      3. This is the big one. If you concede that I adequately demonstrated foreign aid to be ineffective and harmful, how can one say *even with the concession of points one and two* that there is a good case for it being obligatory? There was a reason I brought this out as my strong argument... So I'm curious how, with the concession of this point to Con, the debate can lean pro at all... if you can elaborate.

      Overall in the end of your judgement you stated that points one and two went to pro (which I am still unsure of how given that the points you said you'd need in order to concede them, I gave), and that point 3 went to con, but you still gave the argument "overall" to pro. this judgment honestly seems non sequitur to me as it proposes an invalid syllogism.

      1. Wealthy nations have exploited others.
      2. Prenatal care is cheaper in undeveloped nations
      3. Foreign aid is bad and doesn't work

      Therefore; Wealthy nations are obligated to provide foreign aid.



    • 2 years ago

      I'm a bit torn here. On the one hand I don't want to argue with an official judge's decision as it seems to be in bad taste, but on the other hand I feel that by the criteria *you gave* for your own judgment, it seems that my side should have been favoured.

      So yeah I actually am asking if there's any way you can reassess that.

    • 2 years ago
    • 2 years ago

      @daveykanabus Hi, so I'm just gonna go through your points of contention and clarify

      So for the exploitation thing, I didn't think that this was a valid point because it's pretty clear that modern wealthy nations crippled others with imperialism and stuff, so just because it's been going on forever, does not mean it's morally excusable. Pro did a more thorough job providing reasons why this imperialism is reason for reparations with a wider variety of global examples, etc.

      And on the definitions point, I stand by both of my statements. What I think was unclear that I should have stated explicitly was that I think the strength in your clarification came from the perspective of looking at distinguishing ngo donations as more of a grounds argument. What you did here was force me to look at pro advantages only through the scope of what is feasible which is important because prior to that, the aff had claimed grounds that would have been practically impossible to beat. This is also part of why I didn't really weigh pro's second contention. By finessing this definition of government aid you forced the pro to make a link claim which they didn't have before, but which I think was made sufficiently by the end of the round. This link and that I still think you didn't adequately refute the body of the contention itself is what made me lean pro.

      As for my final decision, what I'm looking at is the morality framework, right. So, in this debate what I'm looking at is which side gives the widest access to basic benefits, and it basically comes down to the idea that life is a prereq to health/happiness. Pro provided me early on with evidence that this type of aid from wealthy nations promotes life whereas your argument showed me that aid was economically harmful and enabled corruption. Thus, this argument fails to link into the weighing mech since you don't frame it in morality. If I was weighing with like, a CBA or even an interp fw laid out by one of you, this may have flipped the debate, but as it goes, I had a morality fw set in the first speech that was generally agreed upon. The closest I felt you got to that was by saying like, we should spend this money at home to help people, but I felt like pro's refutations and case building earlier on (see like around the 12m mark for one example) provides direct enough clash to outweigh in the scope of the round. So anyway, bottom line is your arguments were really good but you did not impact weigh for the right framework, the one agreed upon within the round.

      lmk if you have more questions.

    • 2 years ago

      like honestly, I hate to be that judge, who makes a decision based on something that may seem minute, but framework is fundamental to the success of your case because it tells me why I should care about what moments in the debate, so it's a really important part of my judging paradigm

    • 2 years ago

      @navapanichz Yeah even on the morality framework... no, especially on the morality framework (which I *did* link it to, by the way). How can you concede the point that something is ineffective and possibly harmful, and still affirm it as morally obligatory?... That question still hasn't been answered. Idk, maybe the next judge will have a bit of a clearer perspective on this. Thanks for the explanation anyway.

    • 2 years ago

      You kind of contradict yourself again in your explanation as well. On the one hand you say that my grounds argument forced you to not consider pro's second contention, and then in the next paragraph you still claim that contention affirms government aid as a means to basic needs.

      Like seriously; I'm fine with a judgment against my side, but not one that is contradictory to its own terms. If I may be so audacious in saying so; it seems like you affirm my arguments are better, but vote pro out of personal opinion. :\

    • 2 years ago

      @daveykanabus Okay so let's just go over this one more time and hopefully you can understand my decision. In terms of the harms of FA, I felt like you did not effectively link to the morality framework and you spent most of your time on explaining why that contention was economically/governmentally harmful. The Pro provided me with a directly clashing argument in regards to how a little money goes a long way in saving lives (contention 3, not 2. these sound similar so I see how you may think I'm contradicting myself, but I can assure you I am not) that I thought outweighed in the fw of the round. That's why I can consider it morally obligatory. Regardless of how well you linked, Pro did so more directly, on a wider scale, and like I said, I feel like they had a greater impact in terms of why aid is morally obligatory.

      Finally, I'd like to say, I never make rushed or arbitrary decisions. I never judge based on my own opinions. Like all of the RJ's here, I made an agreement to be impartial which I uphold in every round. Based on the framework of the round, I did not affirm your arguments were better. You are a good debater, but in my opinion (not because of my opinions), you lost this round.

  • 2 years ago
    • 2 years ago

      I would like to add one thing that I didn't get a chance to finish with. Yes I would help a family on the street if I walked past them... in *my own nation*. I would do that long before I would mail a check to Africa, or worse, write laws requiring the government to write one out of your bank account. That is exactly my point, and your concluding point which makes an emotional appeal to proximity and neighborly charity actually affirms my premise of domestic assistance taking priority over foreign aid. If I'm walking past a starving cold family: those are local people that I can help here and now by charitable action; *that* is where our moral obligation lies. Not in spending tax money to stimulate foreign economies.

      • 2 years ago

        @joshuatreeretreat & @daveykanabus

        Great debate guys, apologies for the delay with the judge. We should have them today along with the final decision. Your confirmed judges so far: @navapanichz @ninadabit

        • 2 years ago

          @qallout_tournament does the fact that two judges have already been confirmed mean that the first is known to be voting against the popular vote, requiring a third decision? Or is the second judge simply on standby just in case?

        • 2 years ago

          @daveykanabus We need both judges for this Round because just for this tournament (and due to numbers count), we will save 3 of the "loosers" to pass to the Quarter Finals based on how many votes they managed to get.

      • 2 years ago
        • 2 years ago

          @daveykanabus I'm sorry I did not go explicitly into everything in this judgment. I had to go and redo this judgment because my internet cut out midway through without my knowledge the first time and I had to take a break to attend to something because I hadn't planned on that happening time-wise before coming back to redo this off the notes I'd made. I do recall addressing this at least the first time around, but I don't think that the argument of this being a neverending historical correction necessarily stands up when pro gives multiple examples of how specific nations (such as noting the British empire and drawing borders) have necessarily done the harm relatively recently in addition to the previous historical issues. While I agree that the argument of you can't possibly continue doing this or correct for all of history has merit, I think its merit comes a lot more from the practical sense not from the moral sense that you both decided to debate on. Would it be virtually impossible to correct for all wrongs? Of course. But the pro herself states that, especially given how little wealth is needed to do so, that the moral obligation exists because these problems were caused and perpetuated by these specific nations. I don't really want to rehash this whole debate in the comments section, but as far as addressing what you want me to address I'm sorry that I wasn't able to go further into this, I ran pretty close to the 7 minute mark on this adjudication and had technical difficulties. I did consider this, it just didn't change my vote/persuade me in the comparative.

        • 2 years ago

          @ninadabit Okay... that's exactly the opposite of what your judgment video said though.. you claimed I simply never addressed it. And how is practicality separate from morality? "This is impractical and won't help" is somehow separate from "you have no moral obligation to do it"? Kind of thought that was a lynchpin myself, but okay.

          It's all good. Better luck next time I suppose.

          *extreme eyerolling*

        • 2 years ago

          @daveykanabus Morality and practicality are different things, you can have an obligation to do something morally but be incapable of doing something. We're going to have to agree to disagree on this, but being in a debate can look very different from being an objective observer outside of a debate. Furthermore, you didn't do much on the 'won't help' idea, which I've already addressed in my original adjudication. I wish you the best of luck in future debates, I'm sorry that this one was not seen the way you saw it.

        • 2 years ago

          @ninadabit Someone has never heard the phrase "ought implies can". No I will not agree to disagree on basic philosophical principles that act as foundation stones for judging sound reasoning. Having an obligation to do the impossible is a logical absurdity, and if that is really the cental pivoting point here I'm even more shocked now.

          Outstanding... really, just wow.

        • 2 years ago

          "For if the moral law commands that we ought to be better human beings now, it inescapably follows that we must be capable of being better human beings... The action to which the "ought" applies must indeed be possible under natural conditions."

          -Immanuel Kant

        • 2 years ago

          @daveykanabus if something is highly impractical, it's still technically possible as an action, but extremely difficult.. and I think the questions is here about pragmatism rather than absolutes of whether something is technically possible or practically possible.

          I get what you're saying with Kant's quote though..

        • 2 years ago

          @yaz sure, but we're debating a specific means, not an end. I never contend we dont have an obligation to help unfortunate people, I contend that trying to do so by giving reparatory foreign aid sets an impossible precedent, is impractical, and a nation is not morally bound to that *specific course of action* to acheive the goal of helping.

          It's like telling someone their moral obligation to provide for their family *has* to manifest in the form of quitting their job and being a deadbeat. An impractical means that can never meet the end has been proposed as morally obligatory.

        • 2 years ago

          These points were entirely overlooked in the judgement, I am now given logical absurdities to validate that, and yeah I feel that was not a good choice...

      • 2 years ago
      • 2 years ago
        • 2 years ago

          Not the RJ for this round, but here was how I weighed the arguments. @daveykanabus

        • 2 years ago

          Thanks for weighing in, Daniel. Perhaps I'm insane, I mean with multiple opinions weighing against me I must be, right? But the analysis you gave is rather off the wall to me as well.

          The points you say I should have made at around 4:00... I *did*. I made these points not only in my second talk but I repeated them in future talks. I quite clearly said that I'm not just talking about a vague notion of "fixing inequality", I mentioned that there still exists real suffering and wrongs, citing homelessness and starvation, that can be righted in prosperous nations, and that before those nations can have an obligation to any other, they must address these for their own citizens.

          Right at 4:15 you say "if you want to make this argument, press the idea that there's a moral obligation to help your own country, and ask has there ever been a country that fully rooted out inequality?".... if I pressed that issue any more I would have spent all 15 minutes of speaking time repeating it. I strongly asserted that wealthy nations still have these problems, not fully rooted out... I mentioned this in *every one of my talks*. At 4:30 in your video you say I didn't argue any of this on my end....???

          Please replay the debate at 11:30. I argue this *clearly* here. I do tack on the point of a greater net reduction in human suffering, and when she counters this with NGO provided prenatal care I immediately deflect that with the effectiveness charity nullifying the obligation to provide this through foreign aid in the following talk.

          I press the point *again* at 22:45. and *AGAIN at 28:40, and **AGAIN** at the conclusion of my final talk. So yes, just like I said to the previous judges, I am absolutely baffled that your judgment weighs against me on the grounds that I "did not argue" points that I pressed throughout the entire debate.

          No, I'm not rehashing the debate here, just going off of the work done in the actual debate, the things I am being told I did not do which would have weighed the debate in my favour... I clearly did. You do go on to state that this still isn't a winning argument for you because there *could* be a moral obligation assuming everyone was already helped, but the resolution wasn't "could have", it was "have", and since I demonstrated that *not* everyone has been helped, this seems irrelevant.

          Next you say that what could have been my winning argument, I simply dropped and didn't pick up again. Well as demonstrated above it doesn't matter how many times I repeat something, it apparently won't be heard by a RJ. And I felt that once this point was driven home, and once it was demonstrated the the people it *may* help could just as easily be addressed by charity, leaving no room for a unique obligation to foreign aid... that I didn't need to do any more work here in the limited time window when my opponent was moving on to the issues of reparations for imperialism.

          Thanks for the second opinion... perhaps I'm crazy, or speaking in terms that can't be understood. but I guess 3 RJ's can't all be wrong on the exact same oversights right?

          Anyways, congratulations to my opponent once again. And I've been revived for the next round since I had the community vote, so I will take these pointers into consideration and see if there's a way I can appeal to the judges more by... well... making sure they hear the things I clearly argued multiple times I guess?


        • 2 years ago


          1. General point
          a. You really need to tag your arguments
          I listened again, and I still don't think you said the things you needed to say, but even if you had, there's a reason the judges didn't hear any of them. You don't usually differentiate or name the arguments you're giving. It's sort of a random blob of words so it's hard to tell if you've made 5 distinct argument or 1 argument that touched on 5 things. If you come up with a 3-5 word tagline for your argument such as "foreign aid hurts the poor" and then explain that argument, move to your next argument, and give a new tagline, it is MUCH easier to follow, and judges won't lose your arguments as much.

          2. Fix your nation first. < (Notice the tagline?)
          a. Moral questions are hypotheticals. You're asking a practical question of how they should implement the hypothetical, but you're playing the wrong sport here. This is why the judges didn't come along with you on this. Your opponent is asking about the moral question of if a country has a theoretical obligation to do what they can for others who have less. You keep acting like you talked about this issue. You didn't. You never address the morality claim, you just address the practicality, which leaves the moral claim untouched.
          b. You do not critique the idea that someone who has more should help those who have less. You agree this is the case, you just think they should prioritize those close to them first. If this is the case, you are agreeing that wealthy nations have a moral obligation to help those that have less, you just prefer a different timeline for them to do so, but even so you've agreed that the resolution is true. Thus, this was never going to be a winning argument for you, even if you made it perfectly.
          c. Pressing your opponent means offense. None of your arguments here were offensive. If you're going to make this argument, you need to actually push her into a corner. Make her play on your playing field and talk about the practical implementation of her moral question. If there is no practical implementation, then her moral stance is irrelevant. So what I was saying you should do here is press her to find out what she thinks a nation should do to other nations when there are problems at home. If you can make her admit
          1. Nations should not spend money abroad when there is trouble at home.
          2. There is no nation in past or present, and there will be no nation ever in the future that entirely fixes it's poverty issues.
          3. There is no nation in past or present, and there will be no nation ever in the future with enough surplus cash to spend what they can on problems at home and still have money left over to help others...
          then you might have an argument here. The problem is, as long as there exists the hypothetical for a wealthy nation having spare money, you lose this argument, because she's arguing for the moral claim, you're arguing for the practical claim. You have really really weak ground.

          Your argument won't work on it's own, but it could work if you press her into saying what nations should and shouldn't do. If you trap her, she might admit that nations shouldn't give foreign aid in certain circumstances, and you can shift the debate to the practical perspective you wanted to talk about.

          3. Foreign Aid Fuels Corruption
          Take some personal responsibility for this one. I guarantee you if you had spoken about this one more (or at all) for the last ten minutes, you'd hear a lot more about it from the judges. Your opponent hadn't responded to this point. I doubt she had any response to it prepared. You could have spent 10 minutes of analysis on this and won easily. You have to have a sense for the arguments you're winning on, and what the actual impact of your argument is.

          The impact of this argument is, foreign aid perpetuates poverty. That's a KILLER impact if you make it right, and it completely turns the entire Pro case. It's a clear winning argument for you, and it should have become your entire focus for the last 10 minutes, instead it disappeared from your argumentation. It was a grave mistake, because this was the argument that disproved her moral claim, and supported your practical perspective. You win under either framework if you make this your focus, especially if you bring up the point I mentioned that Dictators become Complacent and continue their dictatorial tendencies, thus leading to further abuses of human rights, increased poverty, and a complete turn of everything the Pro is trying to accomplish.

          But you ignored this point, and didn't give enough analysis on it in the first place, which allowed her point of lives saved to outweigh it.

        • 2 years ago

          @debateme13 Okay!

          Thanks for this; I fianlly feel that this is a fair analysis and gives a good explanation for why I lost this debate. That's all I wanted. I don't feel that the previous judges did a great job in making it clear the reasons they gave for their votes; and your initial video left something to be desired there as well, but here in this comment you have addressed my concerns and *really* told me what could have been done better, without just saying that I never hit a certain topic, or that even though the most critical, mutually exclusive point went to con, the vote went pro "overall" anyway.

          I do appreciate you taking the time to point out my errors and give an objective analysis for why my points may have gone unnoticed for lack of proper structuring and framework posturing. This is critical feedback and if it's the grounds on which a judgment is lost, I can take that with dignity.

          Thanks again, and I will certainly take these points into consideration. :)

      • 2 years ago
        • 2 years ago

          @daveykanabus , hey man, dropped a judgement, hopefully you find it useful. It's got a bunch of 'stuff I would have said to make your point debate-winning' in it , hopefully that doesnt come off as patronising.

          Overall, I just reckon you're case fell into a bit of an is//ought fallacy problem. You were definitely on the right track though.

          Also arguing against utilitarianism sucks cause the arguments in favour are much easier to make than the arguments against, but if the pro does a good utilitarian argument it still deserves to beat an incomplete deontological one

      • 2 years ago

        @debateme13 @benmouse42 Thanks a lot guys for taking the time to provide such thoughtful feedback. As veterans on QO, your experience as judges and debaters here, is valuable and your feedback is always great!

        @daveykanabus I hope that personalized feedback from Daniel and Ben was useful (our community is the strongest QO asset :-)). Quick note that the official judges only watch the debate once, keep notes and only have a couple of minutes to provide feedback to each debater so for sure they will not touch on every point. I will reiterate to all our judges to continue being mindful of the language that they use e.g. "didn't analyze enough" vs "didn't mention" etc so that we try to minimize futures misunderstandings.

        Thanks again for your feedback and good luck on the tournament!