It should be noted that kingwill is presupposing that fiat is a "power", and that advocating a plan somehow "makes it happen" on a level beyond other arguments in the round. (This stands in contrast to conventional rezcentrism, in which fiat is merely a term used to describe the fact that certain arguments are irrelevant, and plans/CPs are merely factual points that help affirm or deny the truth of the resolution.) I have recently come to disagree with this position; see this thread
, a lengthy (and, at times, entirely incoherent
) discussion of whether advocacy matters.
Discussing his points further would probably be pointless, since I approach the whole issue from a different framework. But two quick comments:
the difference is between neg saying "we shouldn't do this because the likelihood/magnitude of this lost opportunity outweighs the benefits" and "we shouldn't do this because there is a better way to do it."
Both of these cases involve opportunity costs. Think of it this way: why does it matter that there is a "better way to do it"? Because doing it the worse way misses out on the advantages of the better way. That's an opportunity cost.
As I said, by definition
, if a counterplan is competitive, it's an opportunity cost. That's literally what competition is: "if you do this, you can't also do that." This is why it "works" for CPs to be just
opportunity cost DAs, without assuming advocacy.
Since the Negative team has no 'fiat' power derived from the resolution, the CP has to be something that could realistically happen WITHOUT the judge voting for it. A vote for the neg is a vote for the SQ, meaning that the plan has to happen IN the Status Quo.
Right (sort of), but there are two exceptions(?) to this.
First, something can be a legitimate opportunity cost without being guaranteed to happen. For example, suppose we think Person XYZ is a terrorist, and we think we should blow him up with a drone strike. However, if there is a sufficient chance that he might be innocent, we shouldn't - because we'd lose the opportunity to have a proper trial, acquit him, etc. Even if it's a pretty small chance, the opportunity cost may be a reason to reject the plan.
Second, if the CP uses the same actor as the resolution, things don't necessarily have to be likely in the SQ to be an opportunity cost. Take the typical resolution "Resolved: That the United States Federal Government should significantly reform its environmental policy." This establishes the contextual question of the round as, "what should the USFG do?" You can't say, "the USFG shouldn't sanction Iran because Iran should just unilaterally disarm", because the resolution doesn't ask what Iran should do. But you can
say, "the USFG shouldn't sanction Iran because the USFG should just invade Iran", because the resolution does
ask what the USFG should do.
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