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Framework. SCFI 2011 SJK. Lecture Objectives. Understand the nature of a resolution and its various components. Understand the nature of truth and the way in which we prove things true and false Discover the purposes of framework

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SCFI 2011


Lecture objectives
Lecture Objectives

  • Understand the nature of a resolution and its various components.

  • Understand the nature of truth and the way in which we prove things true and false

  • Discover the purposes of framework

  • Learn to construct a framework based on the nature of truth and valuation

  • Learn to debate and answer framework

What is a resolution
What is a resolution?

  • A statement that will be proven true or false in the course of the debate round

Types of resolutions
Types of Resolutions

  • Positive

    • “In the United States, juveniles ought to be treated as adults in the criminal justice system.”

  • Negative

    • “Economic sanctions ought not be used to achieve foreign policy objectives.”

  • Choice

    • “When forced to choose, a just government ought to prioritize universal human rights over it’s national interest.”

Components of a resolution
Components of a Resolution

In the United States

juveniles charged with violent felonies


ought to be

treated as adults

Qualifying mechanisms

Evaluative mechanism

in the criminal justice system

Defining the components of a resolution
Defining the Components of a Resolution

  • Subject

    • Just like it sounds; the subject of the resolution – what you are debating about

  • Qualifying Mechanism

    • Sets the parameters of the round

      • Example: the juvenile crime topic, without “In the United States,” the topic would be much broader to include any nation

      • Another example: “When forced to choose” in the human rights/national interest topic

Defining the components of a resolution1
Defining the Components of a Resolution

  • Evaluative Mechanism

    • The MOST IMPORTANT part of any resolution – it is the means by which you prove the resolution true or false

    • Common evaluative mechanisms

      • Ought

      • Just/Justify

Our camp topic
Our camp topic…

  • What is the subject?

    • Targeted killing

  • The qualifying mechanism?

    • Foreign policy tool

  • The evaluative mechanism?

    • Morally permissible

The nature of truth
The Nature of Truth

  • What is truth?

    • How do we prove a statement true or false?

How do we prove a statement true
How do we prove a statement true?

  • Example: “People ought not kill others”

    • How can we prove this statement true or false?

So what exactly is framework
So, what exactly IS framework?

  • Means of “framing” the resolution

    • Agent specification

    • Definitions

    • Resolution Analysis

    • Parameters

  • Means of defining status of relevant pre-fiat implications (will discuss later)

  • Means of meeting evaluative mechanism

    • Creating a lens through which to view arguments and weigh their implications

Defining the value premise
Defining the Value Premise

  • What is a value?

    • Values probably aren’t what you think they are

      • Just something valuable?

        • How to we judge which value is more important?

        • How do we know which value indicates truth in a resolution?

      • Intrinsic links to evaluative mechanism

        • If something else is valuable, how does that prove something true?

        • Why is one value more important?

      • VPs MUST link to eval mech. Otherwise your constructive does not affirm or you have to take unnecessary steps. I’m warning you, it’s usually the former.

Defining the value premise1
Defining the Value Premise

  • Every resolution has a handful of IMPLIED value premises

    • What values are implied by “ought”?

      • Morality

      • Desirability

      • Fulfilling Obligations

    • What about “justified”?

    • “But Steve! My coach taught me differently and I don’t like these values! Can I use values that aren’t these?”

      • You can but you shouldn’t, because it just makes you take an extra step. It’s like making a plane connection. If your destination is St. George but you choose to fly through another airport first when the direct flight was cheaper, it’s just unnecessary extra steps. You still have to get to St. George somehow.

        • Often, when people pick different VPs, they never get to St. George

Finding a thesis
Finding a Thesis

  • When you get a new topic:

    • Research!

    • Brainstorm!

    • Create a list of arguments, both aff and neg, that you could formulate into cases

      • What are the implications? Why do these reasons matter?

        • Deontological?

        • Utilitarian?

        • Both?

      • Multiple implications?

Defining the standard
Defining the Standard

  • What is the implication of your constructive?

    • How can this implication be formulated into a standard for evaluation?

  • You can usually formulate any implication into a standard; there is literature for almost everything

Defining the standard1
Defining the Standard

  • What is a standard?

    • Means of testing achievement of the value premise

    • Types of standards

      • Necessary

      • Sufficient

    • A standard MUST contain a verb! Otherwise how are you measuring achievement of the value premise?

      • An abstract theory is NOT a standard

        • “How do you know Steve won that race?”“Locke’s social contract.”

        • “How do you know that debate is awesome?”“Categorical Imperative”

Selecting a standard
Selecting a Standard

  • Find the implications of your contentions

    • Examples:

      • Deontological

        • Violates rights – Protection of Rights

        • Violates Constitution – Maintaining the Constitution

        • Dehumanizes – Minimizing Dehumanization

        • Treats people as means to an end – Treating people as ends

      • Utilitarian

        • Causes Terrorism – Maximizing net benefits

        • Causes War – Protection of life

        • Environment harms – Maximizing net benefits

        • Nuclear war – etc.

        • Genocide – etc.

Selecting a standard1
Selecting a Standard

  • Decide why these implications violate the VALUE PREMISE

    • Examples

      • Nuke war kills people, in order to be moral the government must not kill innocent people, thus you affirm/negate

      • Targeted killing treats people as a means to an end, treating people as a means to an end is immoral, thus you affirm/negate

  • Find literature that warrants and defends the standard and links it to the VP

So constructing a case
So, Constructing a Case:

  • Start by determining the implied value premise in the evaluative mechanism

  • Figure out what your thesis will be

    • Structure your points into contentions and subpoints

    • Determine the implications of the contentions

  • Find a standard that provides the bridge between the implications of your thesis and the implied Value Premise, and card some literature that provides you with the warrants for this link

Debating framework
Debating Framework

  • Winning a round depends almost exclusively on knowing framework!

  • Best strategy: win BOTH frameworks

    • Link turns: I achieve opponent’s framework better

      • “Even if you don’t buy that…”

    • Outweighing on strength of link: I have a stronger link and thus better risk of offense to my opponent’s standard

Debating framework1
Debating Framework

  • Other strategies

    • De-linking framework from the EM

      • Challenging value premise’s link

      • Challenging evidence connecting the VP and the VC

      • Challenging meta-ethical underpinnings of the F/W

    • My framework is better because…

      • Better evidence/Strength of link to VP and EM

      • Theory

    • My opponent’s framework sucks because…

      • Bad implications

      • Bad evidence

      • Bad judging standard

      • Theory

Other purposes of framework
Other Purposes of Framework

  • Agent specification

    • Is there a specific actor working in the resolution?

      • Government?

        • Federal/National?

        • Government in general?

    • Are we policy makers? Observers?

    • Are we fiating a change in the status quo?

Other purposes of framework1
Other Purposes of Framework

  • Definitions

    • Clears up any small ambiguities in the text of the resolution

    • AMBIGUOUS or NEEDED terms ONLY!!

      • We all know what the United States is…

  • Resolution Analysis

    • Usually related to the qualifying mechanism

    • Narrows parameters of resolution and avoids confusion, expands or limits ground

Other purposes of framework2
Other Purposes of Framework

  • Parametricization

    • Narrows topic to one specific instance (usually)

      • “Moses ought to buy a red car” still affirms the resolution “Moses ought to buy a colored car.”

      • Other examples:

        • On the nuke weapons topic, many isolated certain nations that ought not possess nukes.

        • On the sanctions topic, certain countries and sanctions policies were isolated.

      • Sometimes, some logical jumps are required to parametricize, so how do we resolve some of the logical discrepancies?

        • Theoretical justifications