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Impacts. Overview. Discuss major “topic impacts” Discuss how to prepare for and win impact debates Impacts discussed will include Leadership Growth Everything else. Impact #1: Leadership. Also called “hegemony” or “ heg ”, or sometimes “preponderance”

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  • Discuss major “topic impacts”
  • Discuss how to prepare for and win impact debates
  • Impacts discussed will include
    • Leadership
    • Growth
    • Everything else
impact 1 leadership
Impact #1: Leadership
  • Also called “hegemony” or “heg”, or sometimes “preponderance”
  • Like many impacts, is debated as both “heg good” and “heg bad”
  • Leadership is divided along two axes
    • Hard power: military and economic might
    • Soft power: cultural and ideological attractiveness
  • Impact modules exist for both “heg good/bad” and “soft power good/bad”
leadership cont d
Leadership [cont’d]
  • Heg good thesis: U.S. influence serves an important balancing and stabilizing function, and a U.S. withdrawal would spur conflicts as states move rapidly to fill the power vacuum (Khalilzad ‘95)
  • Common impact scenarios include:
    • Great power wars (global nuclear war)
    • East Asian wars
    • European wars
    • South Asia wars
    • Mideast wars
    • Economic collapse
    • Terrorism
    • Proliferation—allied and adventurist
    • Democracy
    • Competitor states bad—Russia, China
    • Revisionist states bad—Iran, North Korea, Venezuela
leadership cont d1
Leadership [cont’d]
  • Heg bad thesis: U.S. intervention in the affairs of other states risks the U.S. getting drawn into wars, and increases resentment/blowback against the U.S.
  • Common “heg bad” scenarios include:
    • Terrorism
    • Proliferation
    • Economy (overstretch)
    • China containment bad/resentment
    • Russia containment bad/resentment
    • Arms racing/super weapons
    • Democracy (domestic and international)
    • Regional wars everywhere the other side says “heg is good”
leadership cont d2
Leadership [cont’d]
  • Soft power good thesis: Actions that increase the international standing of the U.S. are good/actions that decrease the international standing of the U.S. are bad
  • Common scenarios include:
    • Economy
    • Disease
    • Terrorism
    • Environment (general)
    • Warming
    • Proliferation (cooperation internals, esp. Iran)
leadership cont d3
Leadership [cont’d]
  • Soft power bad thesis: increasing the international reputation of the U.S. allows it to encourage other states to do bad things
  • Common impact scenarios include:
    • Missile defense deployments bad
    • Iran containment/attack bad
    • Terrorism/counterterrorism bad
    • Democracy promotion bad
leadership cont d4
Leadership [cont’d]
  • Keys to winning a heg debate:
    • Control short-term uniquenes—heg high/low now
    • Control long-term uniqueness—is heg sustainable?
    • Emphasize timeframe arguments (every impact will have the same magnitude)
    • Have MORE scenarios than your opponent
    • Read defense against your opponent’s impacts
impact 2 growth
Impact #2: Growth
  • Is continued economic growth good or bad? Conventional wisdom says “good”, but there are a lot of good cards either way
  • Debates tend to center on the relationship between economic expansion and
    • Frequency and intensity of conflict/war
    • Environmental destruction and preservation
  • Will most commonly be encountered as a disad (esp. politics) impact
  • Useful because can be used to turn everything
growth cont d
Growth [cont’d]
  • “Growth good” tends to assume that it is inevitable, hardwired into the human condition, and is capable of self-correction (solving the problems it produces via tech, ingenuity and wealth)
  • Typical impacts include:
    • War (parallels to WW2)
    • Space
    • Environment (wealth effect)
growth cont d1
Growth [cont’d]
  • “Growth bad” tends to assume that economic expansion occurs within a finite resource/environmental systems that are incapable of supporting continued growth
  • Typical impacts include:
    • War (K-wave theory, upswing wars)
    • Environmental collapse, w/ various scenarios
    • Equity/ethics
growth cont d2
Growth [cont’d]
  • THE key question—will human ingenuity be able to keep ahead of impending pollution and scarcity problems
  • Get to space
  • Should get to understand explanations for WW2—are used on both sides
impact 3 terrorism
Impact #3: Terrorism
  • Definition: terrorism is the use of violence against civilian targets to achieve political ends
  • By this standard, virtually all governments engage in terrorist acts
  • Quick aside—terror talk
  • Has become a defining feature of contemporary debate—many authors are obsessed with terrorism and its impact, esp. since 9/11
terrorism cont d
Terrorism [cont’d]
  • Terrorism bad impacts include
    • Extinction (Sid-Ahmed, Gordon, etc.)
    • Nuclear war (from great power escalation, Ayson)—includes questions of target retaliation
    • Economic collapse
    • Totalitarianism (turns “soft” case impacts)
  • Most impact scenarios assumes terrorists will use nuclear weapons
    • Can they get them?
    • Do they want them?
    • Would they use them?
    • Are we vulnerable to terrorist use?
terrorism cont d1
Terrorism [cont’d]
  • “Terrorism Good” arguments assume that terror attacks do not escalate to major conflicts, and spur policy changes that are net-beneficial
  • Scenarios include:
    • Hegemony
    • China Bashing bad (terror discourse)
    • Russia (encourages cooperation)
    • Missile Defense
    • Iran Strikes Good
  • Defensive arguments include: [see Mueller 2011, 2012]
    • Terrorists don’t want nukes
    • Terrorists can’t get nukes
    • Terrorists wouldn’t be able to use nukes
terrorism cont d2
Terrorism [cont’d]
  • Escalation debate is the key—if terrorism escalates, terrorism is just bad
  • Should tech out the means/motive/opportunity debate—the terror defense cards are now good enough that this debate is winnable
  • Will be the cornerstone of many Iraq and Afghanistan debates
other impacts
Other Impacts
  • Climate Change
  • Democracy / DPT
  • Energy Security / Oil Prices
  • Latin America-U.S. Relations
  • Proliferation
  • X-U.S. Relations