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The United States of America should fund Khawarji madrasa's throughout the Islamic world

(PRO)
WINNER!
6 points
(CON)
0 points
adminadmin (PRO)
I thank my opponent for challenging me to this rather unusual debate. I'm not usually one to turn down a challenge so I thought I'd give it a go. This is going to be the craziest model I've ever run but please remember that my opponent needs to rebut it before establishing his own case.

What are Khawarij madrasas?
A madrasa is a school that teaches something. In this case, the madrasa is teaching the doctrine of the Khawarji.

I have no idea what Khawarji is as stated in the resolution, but I'll assume it's a misspelling of Khawarij.

The Khawarij were a sect in early Islam that does not directly survive to this day. It came about as a result of the first Islamic civil war, where they essentially opposed everybody after allegedly being betrayed by both sides. They were largely defeated at the end of the Khawarijite Rebellion, circa 892CE. Khawarijites preferred to call themselves Shurah, which is what I'm going to be using for the rest of the debate because it's easier to write, and because it has a nice alliterative sound with the other two major sects of Islam (Shia, Sunni, Shurah).

What did the Shurah believe?
Since they were betrayed in this big battle by the religious authorities, the Shurah believed that/in:
  • Battles cannot be decided by negotiations - only God can decide the result of battles
  • Islam's leaders were fallible and should be revolted against if they deviate from the path of Islam (as they understood it)
  • Complete self-sacrifice and fighting for one's ideals - would gladly kill to forward their beliefs
  • Extreme devotion to fundamentalist Islam
  • A lack of serious study of the meanings of the tenets or the culture of Islam, only considering the words literally
  • Even the smallest sin would land you in hell for eternity
  • Islamic knowledge should not change

It should be noted that the Shurah fought other Muslims exclusively - to them, the sins of other Muslims were just as bad as the sins of the rest of the world.

Islam Today
The Islamic world is vast. For simplicity I'll define a country as part of the Muslim world if more than 75% of its population follows some sort of Islam: this includes Morocco, Afghanistan, Tunisia, Iran, the Western Sahara, Mauritania, Yemen, Tajikistan, Iraq, Jordan, Somalia, Azerbaijan, the Maldives, the Niger, the Comoros islands, Algeria, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, Libya, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Senegal, Gambia, Egypt, Turkmenistan, Syria, Mali, Kosovo, Bangladesh, Kyrgyzstan, Oman, Kuwait, Guinea, Indonesia, Albania, Bahrain, Qatar and the UAE.

The most useful distinction that can be made within the modern world of Islam is that between moderates and fundamentalists. Moderates, largely inspired by the western ideal of religious tolerance, accept the principles of Islam in a liberal sense, while fundamentalists accept them in a more literal sense. The western world is dominated by moderates, while the Islamic world is largely split between the two. There is furthermore a divide between Sunni and Shia, which crops up every so often to help escalate tensions and give excuses for uprising, even though the doctrines between the two are slightly harder to tell apart than Catholics and Orthodox Christians.

The schisms in Islamic doctrine are exacerbated by the relative poverty and political turmoil in the Muslim world. In addition to scarce essential resources leading to frequent outbreaks of disease and famine, often along with widespread poverty, there are also some nations with great wealth, fueled by oil exports. Along with economic and social inequality, the Islamic world enjoys political inequality, ruined by warring factions and despotic leaders. Given this, many smaller armed groups have sprung up to offer a more radical, political alternative - a state based on the tenets of fundamentalist Islam. Such states have existed, for example, in Afghanistan under Taliban rule. However, often, the struggle to achieve such a state is based on more deadly violence, as is the case with ISIS right now. Such groups will often aspire to a "global caliphate" in which everybody is a Muslim.

In short, the Islamic world is internally weak. Externally, however, Islam faces still more issues. Well-publicized terror attacks by fundamentalist groups, coupled with a general sentiment of Islamophobia in the west, have not left Muslim nations with many non-Muslim allies as a general rule. Where these have existed, they have usually existed for the convenience of the western nation in question, as is the case (for example) in the relationship between the USA and Saudi Arabia.

The Problem
In the status quo we can identify a number of unique issues:
  • The Islamic leaders are weak and often ineffective at serving their people, especially when compared to leaders from other nations.
  • Muslims live in poor conditions, largely as a result of this.
  • These conditions in turn allow weak leaders to gain power, a vicious cycle.
  • Western and Muslim nations alike live in fear of Islamic fundamentalism and sometimes unfairly scapegoat all Muslims for this reason.

What Islam Needs
There is a solution to this problem, as I will describe in the following section. But first let's consider what such a solution should achieve as desirable outcomes in overcoming this problem.

It should be apparent from the previous sections that Islam's key issues are largely due to schisms and inequality within the Islamic world itself. The reason why Muslims aren't all getting along is because they hate each other. If Muslims were to like each other, then Islam would not be having these problems. Islam needs to stand united.

The recent Arab Spring has shown that there is something almost all Muslims are united in - they pretty much all have a great deal of their country who hate their leaders. Uprisings were not exclusively confined to just one group or another. Often the governments did have support from those who shared their particular beliefs or background, but the bigger reason why the Arab Spring largely failed was that governments had large stockpiles of weapons while the common people didn't. In some countries, such as Syria, the fighting continues due to the involvement of fundamentalist groups. In others, such as Egypt, foreign diplomatic pressure yielded a token victory. And in yet others, such as Libya, foreign military intervention created some success. But in general, the Arab Spring was a failure.

What Islam ultimately needs is an overall strategy for breaking the poverty cycles it is trapped in. This means a breakdown of existing political structures, social orders, cultural boundaries and other impediments to cooperation is immediately required, with a longer term goal of distributing everything fairly.

Model
My model in this debate is a bit complicated:
  • Working through the CIA, the US government would fund Shurah madrasas throughout the Arab world
  • This aspect of the operation would remain top-secret: if the funds are traced, they should be traced back to another Arab nation. Even the vast majority of the operatives involved in the operation should not know about this.
  • Initially the madrasas would just be networks of specially-trained preachers and field agents, but eventually they would expand to build actual schools and such.
  • Special emphasis would be placed on the Shurah devotion to improving the Muslim condition, as opposed to blaming the west for their issues (although not ignoring the teachings concerning non-believers, it simply would not be emphasized as the most important issue).

This is not a complete description of the model. It will doubtless adapt over time as new circumstances arise, for example, if necessary. 

Effects of building a Shurah madrasa network
Most obviously, you'll be seeing converts to Shurah. Evidence for this comes from:
  • The willingness of people to latch on to other counter-political movements, such as was the case in the recent Arab Spring
  • The willingness of people to choose a fundamentalist alternative, even to the point of suicide bombing etc
  • The similar conditions under which Shurah evolved originally, and its popularity then

Of course, Shurah will be opposed by, and will be in opposition to:
  • Other fundamentalist groups, such as Al Qaeda. They would oppose Shurah as being contrary to the principles of their Islamic philosophy. This will mean such groups will be weakened and have more enemies to fight against from across the spectrum of Islam. As such, they will be less able to do stuff like bomb targets in the western world. This in turn will mean less Islamophobia in the world generally.
  • Moderate Islamic groups, due to Shurah's fundamentalist streak. This will in general mean a radicalization of the opposition to existing impediments to cooperation described earlier - a "cooperate or die" strategy.
  • The social, political, ethnic, cultural etc groups themselves don't want an integrative strategy, and as such will oppose Shurah.
  • The west. Although secretly being funded by a western country, outwardly the west should condemn Shurah and attack it if it becomes too powerful.

So what's the point of a policy that's supposed to "fail"?
As implied by the last bullet point there, it is not anticipated that Shurah will actually achieve their goal of establishing an Islamic new world order. This is because:
  • Such has been tried by numerous other groups in the past with no success, including Shurah itself before it was wiped out
  • Staunch opposition from practically all of the rest of the Islamic world
  • The level of funding can be tactically controlled to ensure it

So then what is the purpose of the policy? How does it help overcome the problem of the barriers to social change in the Islamic world?

Even though Shurah will not become the new norm in Islam, it will be the tipping point which, together with other moderate and fundamentalist groups, finally topples the existing order. The overall aim of the policy is merely to push the Islamic world into civil war. Other fundamentalist groups are liable to use the funding to attack the west, while moderate groups are likely to not use it all to attack somebody. Because Shurah converts may have previously come from any background at all, Shurah is dangerous across the Islamic world.

There are several possible outcomes from such conflict, but keeping a Shurah minority to spark an uprising if needed will ensure:
  • Islamic countries will all become Islamic fundamentalist states just generally, and cooperate within the spirit of the Islamic doctrine
  • Islamic leaders will be forced to work for the benefit of the Islamic people
  • Crucially, that the Shurah in good times has not enough funding for an attack, but has the funding available when toppling the government would be profitable for the west. The west will use this influence to strategically topple governments that work against the interests of either the west OR people in Islamic countries. Thanks to the Shurah doctrine of not looking into things too much, this will be possible.

If this outcome is not achieved, Shurah will keep on fighting, and the USA will continue to invest whatever money is required. Eventually, moderate groups would likely displace to other nations, taking their followers with them, and integrating into western society. This is to ensure that a continuation of their philosophy does not have to mean the death of all their people, though they would no doubt long to return to their homeland. Such additional integration of moderates is great for promoting pro-Islamic sentiments generally in the west. To encourage such migration, the same networks that are used to smuggle in the Shurah philosophy should also be available to traffic anybody out of the country who wants to leave but is otherwise unable to.

Why this solves the problem
Under the status quo, there is no meritocracy in Islamic government. Leaders are but blindly supported or opposed based on whether they come from particular sects. Shurah will ensure that leaders are supported when that support will lead to better outcomes for Islam and for the people, while they will be opposed if they do not meet these ends. This will mean these parts of the world will break down the barriers that are impediments to their progress, allowing them to break the cycles of impoverishment they are trapped in.

Why this is superior to a non-radicalized set of Islamic states?
Such states exist already, and are only able to be kept alive through vast inequality. By implementing this policy, we do what's best for Islamic states.

Let's consider an example - Palestine. As the recent conflict has shown, both Israel and Hamas share some degree of fault for the condition of the people there, but there's no effective Muslim movement that fights both out of non-sectarian reasons, but because of their involvement in poor government. Shurah would be that movement. Shurah would establish a new, uncompromising government in Palestine and everywhere else. The key reason why Israel gets away with what it does is because Muslims are all also fighting each other. When this ends, peace by mutually assured destruction can be achieved.

Why the US should do this as opposed to somebody else
Two reasons. First, waiting for somebody else, the US might be waiting for a long time. The people of Islamic countries need help to self-actualize now.

Second, the US has the resources to perform a covert operation like this successfully. The same is true of few other institutions.

Third, it supports the overall aims of creating a more tolerant society in western culture.

I look forward to seeing my opponent's objections.

Return To Top | Posted:
2014-08-18 22:15:16
| Speak Round
Cross-Examination
admin: Do you intend to make an argument?
Csareo!!!!: Yes I do. Unfortunately, a situation came up that required the immediate relocation of my personhood. To my dismay, my HP laptop could not make the trip :(
Csareo!!!!: I would like to better understand your case. If you would, please answer the following questions with either a yes or no
Csareo!!!!: Were you aware that there is still a small amount of khawarji living in the present?
Csareo!!!!: Do you consider Ibadi's to be khawarji, or are they in a different denominal group?
Csareo!!!!: Sorry, some of these questions can not be answered with a yes or no
Csareo!!!!: Do you have a specific plan for how these madrassas would be funded?
Csareo!!!!: By rough estimate, how much money do you think it would take to move forward with your plan?
Csareo!!!!: I will start with these questions. Take your time in answering them. Since I don't have an argument up, there is little you can question me on, but please do if you can.
admin: In the order the questions appear: don't accept the premise, no they're different, yes, and a few billion US dollars
admin: Questions for you, do you agree that the Islamic world is presently in a vicious cycle of poverty?
admin: And further, would you agree that the western world has an obligation to help developing nations improve their standard of living in general?
Csareo!!!!: I believe there is poverty, but social mobility has gone upward where war is not.
Csareo!!!!: I do not believe in obligations
Csareo!!!!: so no
Csareo!!!!: How are Islamic leaders "Weak"?
admin: They fail to help their people effectively.
admin: My question was mostly, do you agree that the poverty is cyclic in its nature? Also, why don't you believe in obligations?
Csareo!!!!: Question One: I do not
Csareo!!!!: Question Two: To believe in obligations, I would first need to believe in entitlement. I found no convincing evidence that people should be entitled to anything
Csareo!!!!: Do you accept that khawarji have a belief that calls for the combat of non-khawarji muslims?
Csareo!!!!: Are you aware of what takfir is? If so, then do you think violent takfir will increase under Khawarjism?
admin: Q1, not inherently. While I do believe my model will increase inter-muslim conflict, the reason they fought other muslims was because of perceived injustice, not because they followed a different sect. The point of my model is to combat injustice in the muslim world. Q2, yes and yes.
admin: Would you accept not being in poverty is better than being in poverty for the muslim world?
admin: And if so, on what basis?
Csareo!!!!: Response to Answer
Csareo!!!!: ... You believe that it will increase "inter-muslim" conflict, yet you promote unity in the religion?
Csareo!!!!: ... In certain cases. I find poverty is the path to strong character, identity, and morals for a nation. If they are willing to brave the storm that is.
admin: In what way do I promote unity in religion?
admin: Also, in those cases you mention, isn't the point that the nation comes OUT of poverty stronger than they came into it, in a final, non-impoverished state?
Csareo!!!!: A1: In the section "What Islam Needs", you point out that Islam is full of schisms and inequality. Ending with the phrase "Islam needs to stand united
Csareo!!!!: Q1: Of course, but a nation is stronger if they can get out of poverty themselves.
admin: I make the argument in my case that Islam should be united in tackling poverty, but has been too distracted by religious schisms. Do you agree with this part of my argument?
admin: If ultimately being out of poverty is a desirable end, do you accept the muslim world should work to bring themselves out of poverty?
Csareo!!!!: I agree that muslims should try to work their way out of poverty
admin: Do you further agree that rather than arguing on who the rightful successors of Muhammad were, Muslims should focus on the issue of improving their condition?
Csareo!!!!: I do. Do you accept that sunni's believe that any man capable can succeed Muhammad. Furthermore, do you accept that it is shiite's who do not?
admin: Yes and yes. Can you name me something in this world that is more important than people?

Return To Top | Speak Round
adminadmin (PRO)
We should help others in need if we can
This might seem a little self-evident, but my opponent contests the validity of obligations in general, so I feel like a more through justification is in order in addition to my prior analysis.

The Maori had a proverb: "He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata! He tangata! He tangata!" - roughly meaning "What is the most important thing in the world? People, people, people!"

I asked con in the comments whether he can think of anything more important than people. The reason he couldn't answer that, despite having ample time to do so, was because nothing in this world is more important than people. I continue to challenge him to try to think of anything that's more important than people.

On our side of the house, we further stand for the principle that the more important something is to us, the more we have an obligation to protect it. There's two main reasons for this. First, doing so allows us to know that whatever important thing we have is maintained into the future. This allows us to keep our important things into the future and not have them diminish. The obligation arises because of the value that thing has to us. For example, if the earth is valuable to us, then for that reason we have an obligation to protect the earth, so that its value is maintained. Second, people like having valuable things. We enjoy giving meaning, not just holding it. By protecting something, we give it that meaning, and thus get that enjoyment.

This is the basic principle behind compassion - which is the idea that we all want to generally care for one another. As social animals, obligation is the true strength of humanity.

Why not work to get out of poverty yourself?
Islam has been trying to do this ever since their nations found themselves in poverty. Some muslims have indeed been struggling for centuries to improve the condition of their people, but the leaders have always suppressed them. Often this has been because it has been to the benefit of those leaders. Hence why, for example, in the United Arab Emirates there are a few people who live very well off oil wealth, and a majority that live in poverty. Only a violent revolution will achieve those ends - the largely non-violent Arab Spring has failed.

My opponent critiques the fact that I am promoting this discord, and yet I also promote all Muslims fighting together against poverty. No part of Islam wants poverty for their people. The war is about class, not creed. This is why I am standing for a war on injustice in the Muslim world.

There's an expression - "the enemy of my enemy is my friend". This really applies here. The Shurah may be annoyed at the other sects for a historical injustice, but the more immediate concern would be the social injustice in the Arab world. Once that battle has been won, the muslim world will have conquered their problem of poverty.

I will not pretend that this will solve all the problems Islam has. After poverty has been eradicated, religious conflict will yet remain. But at least that conflict will become more localized. Having found their way out of poverty Muslims will be forced by the Shurah to fight for religious unity. Again, this is superior to the current model of more or less blaming all their problems on the west, and launching terrorist attacks to that effect. Recall that it's after the defeat of the Shurah that Islam entered into its greatest golden age.

With that, I hand the floor back to my opponent and look forward to seeing his case.

Return To Top | Posted:
2014-09-05 03:00:39
| Speak Round
BlackflagBlackflag (CON)

Khawarij Today

I actually have to disagree with admin here. There still are khawarij who exist today, and openly call themselves such. While the religion is hardly popularized, there are many groups who claim to follow the path of khawarij, especially in Iraq and Iran, where the sect has the most power. The religion is hardly evident today, but it would be false to claim it is non-existent, as it very much is, and has become a problem for religious leaders. This Islamic scholar (who publishes many works speaking against jihad) also notes that many people follow the beliefs of khawarij, whether they call themselves by such or not. 

The sheik remarks that a modern day khawarij believes in one of three things...
1. Takfir of Muslims (implying those who aren't khawarij) 
2. Disobedience to rule (those who were not of the 12 judges)
3.  Making it permissible to shed the blood of other muslims

You see, Khawarij actually started as a radical division between the mainstream shiite and sunni caliph debate. The Sunni believed anyone could succeed Muhammad,  yet the Shiite believed only those with divine rule, in either the form of Muhammad's decedents, or the original 12 judges (clerics), like the Aoyatollah, and Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah, could ever take the mantle of Caliph. Now the third sect, Khawarij, forming before the other two, took a much more extreme approach than the shiites. Not only did Khārijite's believe that the clerics and sons of Mohammed should rule, but that any ruler, and any muslims, in opposition, should be killed in open revolt.

Khawarij Clarification/Use of Violent Takfir 

I was expecting admin to bend the definition of Khawarij in his favor, but am surprised to find that he actually showed a modest description of the religion. I agree with most of what he said, but I noticed he omitted the MOST important thing about the religion. The open promotion of violent takfir, or as others may understand,  jihad. Admin did say "Will kill for their beliefs", but this was far to innocent for the truth. Khawarji'ism, actually openly promotes sectarianism among the religion, and encourages jihad against both non-muslims and non-khawarij muslims. Now I'll attempt to elaborate upon why this is not the religion is not the right choice for unifying the Arab World.

[P1] The G-20 nations are in active opposition to violent jihad/terrorism (http://www.pewglobal.org/2007/07/24/a-rising-tide-lifts-mood-in-the-developing-world/)
[C1] A group supporting violent opposition to non-khawarij rule will not be popular with mainstream Muslims 

Rebuttal: Islam Needs a Strong Ruler

I highly disagree with this statement. If anything, Islam needs a soft and gentle ruler. We have found increasing cases of strong man politics in the Middle East failing. Saddam Hussien and Bashar Al-Assad both ruled under the idea that they were strong and powerful leaders, who would transform their respective nations into huge regional powers. Obviously it isn't working for either of the. "Dictators" are having a tough time attracting moderates and contemporary liberal Muslims, and traditionalism seems to get smaller, with more politicians imitating western politics. 

It turns out, that the most democratic countries in the Middle East, have the highest economic growth and human development. Such as Azerbaijan, Djibouti, Turkey, and Lebanon. Simply stated, the strong man  complex no longer appeals to most Muslims, who are now finding idealism's  such as peaceful resistance as better alternatives to violent jihad. The last thing the Middle East needs is another dictator, or the power vacuum a  deposed Khawarij leader would leave behind. 

Believe it or not, the Kingdom of France was at its height under an unpopular and weak Bourbon monarch.


Rebuttal: Religious Leaders Cause Poverty
 
This argument is fallacious. In America, the DOW is up 200%, and the GDP is growing at a rate of 4%, but if I were to attribute all this economic growth, to one man, let's say the president, other's would call me foolish. The president, dictator, or head of state, is just one of millions of economic factors in a country.
I don't know any economist who could maintain his credibility, while distributing all economic growth to one man.

It actually turns out that the highest growing economies in the Middle East, also have the most capitalism. Turkey and Azerbaijan are prime examples. 
Which goes back to the other rebuttal, that Islam needs a weak ruler, who wont interfere strongly in the affairs of the economy. 

Rebuttal + Fallacy Exposure: Khawarij Meant to Topple Existing System

This whole argument is a huge fallacy. Let's start with what hasn't been proven. 
1. That Khawarij wouldn't create the same vicious cycle
2. That Khawarij, an extreme minority religion, could gain influence over the current system
3. That ending the current system would lead to a better system

All these things are assumptions, and big one's at that. The whole resolution seems aligned with fantasy. 
But here is why it's fallacious. Khawarij's pretty much believe the same thing as shiite's, except shiite's don't have a specific  doctrine telling them to kill non-muslims. The countries with the most conflict in the Middle East, also contain the most sectarianism. Think Afghanistan, Egypt, Syria, and Iraq.
Even if the whimsy plan were to work, it would end up in a three way conflict of rule between khawarij, shiite's, and sunni.

Counter Argument: Why Shia is a better alternative to the resolution

1. Shiite countries already have influence in the Middle East
2. Shiite Countries have been successful (Azerbaijan)
3. Shia doesn't promote sectarianism (though many follow it), meaning less death and destruction
4. It would cost less (or with effective policies, nothing)

Counter Argument: Why Secular Democracy is a better alternative to the resolution

1. It has already worked in Turkey and Azerbaijan (60% shia, 30% sunni, most in middle east)
2. The problem is no longer about religion. Just government and economic relationships.
3. The structure already exists, and is better than funding an elaborate plot to convert 40 countries to a new religion.
4. It would cost less (with effective policies, nothing)

Rebuttal: Plan

The plan would never work, for many reasons. Most Middle Eastern countries already fund religion, in billions of $'s actually, but we still notice that religious conversion from sects is low. Even after packing the 50 billion $ in religious spending into the Middle East by Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Egypt, these nations would be lucky to see 1% conversion, which actually hasn't happened in three years. 

The plan would simply cost more money than we have. With states like Mississippi having 25% poverty, the US is already budgeting as it is. To accept this resolution, is to accept obligations. We would spend the whole Federal Reserve on a plan that has no chance of working, but would certainly cause poverty and unrest at home. 

Even if the plan could work, why is the Middle East obligated to wealth at the expense of American taxpayers? This isn't some simple plan that can be solved in 20 billion. It would take 1000's of billions in USD, and centuries to carry out. I simply can not get behind something like that, especially with less radical alternatives, and more common sense to look forward too. 

The religious and government tradition is dying with young Muslims. Why revive a dying concept? 

Counter Plan: Instead of toppling the system through religion, how about we do it through the minds of young people?

When writing the last rebuttal, I had a revelation. Instead of coaxing up some extremely elaborate, expensive, and complicated plan to topple a seldom seen cycle in Middle Eastern politics, why not convince people to change their views on continuing the cycle? The answer isn't to convert their religion, but their mindset. The great thing is, the mindset in young people is already changing, so why not build off that?

One thing is clear, the cycle can be toppled in much more established ways than a near extinct religion. 
Whether it be secular democracy, shia, or philosophy. 

Moral Argument: Is it just to convert people for political gain?

I pose this as more of a question than an argument. Is it just to convert people's religion, way of life, culture, and tradition, simply for political gain? Religion isn't some "silly function to trick people into". People take it seriously, whether it is true or not. It isn't as simple as putting a kid in a school and telling him to worship a god. Religion is a deep and personal connection with a higher power. Something money can't buy.

Which is why I ask two simple questions. Can money change people's beliefs, and if so, is it just?

Return To Top | Posted:
2014-09-12 00:24:21
| Speak Round
Cross-Examination
admin: Do you agree that young people have already tried and failed to change the political system in much of the Arab World?
Csareo!!!!: I don't believe there has been much of an attempt by young people, but the democratic institutions in Libya, Tunisia, and Egypt are a result of young people.
Csareo!!!!: If you claim young people failed to change the Arab world, then who's to say changing the minds of the religious will be any different?
Csareo!!!!: Clarification to A1: The mindset of young people today is more progressive than that of the past. While many people use to fight for civil laws and the abolishment of slavery/serfdom, today they fight for better wages, voting rights, and feminism.
admin: I think it's madness to try the same thing over and over again expecting a different result. New approaches are needed where old ones have failed.
admin: Do you see any difference between the historical Shurah that I talked about in my model, and Khawarij-like groups (though not directly related) that do survive to this day, such as the Ib%u0101%u1E0D%u012Byah?
admin: Ibadiyah sorry

Return To Top | Speak Round
adminadmin (PRO)
Apologies for the forfeit. My opponent and I are now officially even Steven on that front, even if it is a little disappointing that my opponent refuses to engage in cross-examination. :)

The counter plan has been tried before
Young people have already revolted throughout the Islamic world. It has done literally nothing in the past. Not once, throughout Islam's long and oftentimes difficult history. I gave additional analysis on this point in round 1, when I discussed the Arab Spring movement.

I take it this is why my opponent immediately contradicts this line with his so-called "moral question", and previously contradicts it with a plan for secular democracy or Shia Islam. This is clearly indicative of the confused nature of my opponent's response.

The other counter plan has been tried before too
Shia Islam already exists. Their followers are still trapped in the same cycle of poverty, ruled by the same kinds of leaders in crystal palaces, and still stricken by conflict. While their doctrine may be marginally superior in some respects, they do not have the kind of radical alternative that the Islamic world requires.

Azerbaijan is hardly a successful example of a country by the way, and that's the best example my opponent could think of for a predominantly Shia country. I'm surprised my opponent didn't bring up Iran, but anyway. In fact I could hardly think of a worse example than Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan was recently ranked the most corrupt place on the planet by FreedomHouse, an independent corruption watchdog. Human rights watch recently released a report saying this: "The Azerbaijani government’s poor record on freedom of expression, assembly, and association dramatically deteriorated during the year. The authorities arrested dozens of political activists on bogus charges, imprisoned critical journalists, broke up several peaceful public demonstrations, and adopted legislation that further restricted fundamental freedoms." That's far from the kind of society the Islamic world deserves.

Also, seriously, Azerbaijan? Democracy? You've got to be kidding. They've been re-electing members of the same family every year since their foundation, and employ "observers" to call the results of the elections fair BEFORE the vote is even held. One might as well call North Korea a secular democracy by this logic.

Let me put this into perspective with an example of the kind of thing their government does. Azerbaijan gets a lot of wealth from oil, almost all of which goes to the president (who, effectively by law, owns the oil companies). Does he use that money to help his people? No. He literally builds a massive golden statue to his dynasty. And he doesn't even build it in his homeland - he erects it in a garden in Mexico, apparently reserved for the most awesome people of all time. And it's so annoying that even the Mexicans want it gone. True story. This government is the very DEFINITION of an ivory tower.

The third counter plan has failed too
Turkey was in fact one of the most pivotal uprisings of the Arab springs, where the brutal actions of police are debated to this day. I'll go further into this if my opponent continues to hold it up as an example of an awesome government, like he did with the completely preposterous claims he made of Azerbaijan. But in any event, this seems even more unfeasible. If Saudi Arabia can be convinced generally to convert both their religion and their government, then a small portion of their population can definitely be convinced to convert to Shurah beliefs. Worth noting that the west has been trying to achieve this for the longest time and it has always failed.

The ends justify the means
Of course money can change people's beliefs. Evidence for this view can be found in the continued existence of the Church of Scientology.

Just because the goal is for political gain does not mean the faith is not true. For all we know, we could through my model be saving the eternal souls of millions of people, and bringing them closer to God. We therefore have no idea whether the model is morally valuable or not - it deals in things that we simply don't know, because God doesn't like to come down from the heavens much and tell us which religion is correct.

But even if it were amoral or immoral, we feel a Machiavellian approach to global geopolitics is justified in that it yields the best ultimate outcomes for all peoples. It allows us to focus on what matters in a society in terms of what kind of a world we want to live in, and not worry about the immediate consequences of how to get there. A little suffering for a greater good is easily more than justifiable.

My plan
So first my opponent points out low rates of conversions in the middle east. They've been doing this for a very long time and are simply seeing the effects of what economists call "diminishing returns". At first the investment yielded many more followers, but over time this has peaked and leveled off to the extent that today, few new followers are earned on each dollar spent. This is not likely to be an issue with my model because those madrasa are preaching a non-pre-existing ideology, or at least one that does not currently have this level of investment. As such, each dollar spent will be worth more.

The issue with obligations I rebutted quite extensively in the previous round. Here my opponent merely asserts the contrary, which does not refute my analysis.

Do Shurah still exist
My opponent fails to show the impact on the resolution if they do. Nonetheless, different scholars have indeed accused each other in modern times of being Khawarij, rather like an obscure Islamic insult. That can be distinguished from the historical tradition that I want to reinstate from the label. This resolution is about Khawarij madrasas, not Khawarij-by-another-name madrasas. Names can connote and denote a lot of cultural context and meaning that other groups that may or may not have similar beliefs do not share. The fact is that the original sect was conquered, and that's what matters.

Sectarianism in religion
As I explained in my first round, sectarianism is not inherently problematic. The problem is only with the results of this sectarianism not being positive for the people. For too long, sectarianism and the terrorism it spawns has been a tool of political oppression. This model changes it to a tool of political empowerment.

G-20 nations and Muslims are opposed to sectarianism as it exists right now. So am I, and so is this model. That's why this model has a long-term plan to end the sectarian conflict once and for all, by instigating a little more now. Counter-intuitive it may be, but the logic is nevertheless sound. G-20 nations and Muslims can be no more dissatisfied in Shurah than they are in Sunni or Shia militants right now, who also routinely engage in this sort of behavior.

Strong vs soft rulers
Islam was at its height under the Ottoman Empire, which as it so happens practically every single nation in the Middle East today (Israel aside) strongly respects. The leaders of that empire were immensely powerful. That's the kind of middle east that our side of the house wants to see built. The Kingdom of France was actually at its height under Charlemagne, the most powerful of all French kings. I have no idea where my opponent got this detail from as his source doesn't support it.

While Assad and Hussain were bad rulers, that is because they did not care enough for their people. Strength is not measured merely in military prowess but also in ability to empathize with your population.

Religion as a cause of poverty
Religion is a far more dominant force in the middle east compared to the relatively secular America. While Jesus Camp and such is a thing, it's nowhere near as normal for your average guy from Florida or Alaska, compared to your average guy from Iraq or Syria, to be exposed to such radicalized religion particularly from a young age. It's more normalized over there. As such, religious leaders bear a greater burden of responsibility for the financial fortunes of a country.

The fact is that right now not only are a very few exercising too much power over the economy, but they are not even making sound economic judgments. Even the wealthiest middle eastern nations are actually quite poor in real terms when you look at standard of living. But it's no secret that the more secular the country is, in general, the wealthier that country is in these terms. Religion is clearly the primary thing holding these people back. Hence why my opponent is not using the theocracies around there as examples.

"Fallacy exposure"
Apparently I haven't proven that Shurah would not create the same vicious cycle. Except that I have. I showed that the difference is that Shurah work for the better condition of their people, which is not the case with Sunni or Shia sects.

I apparently also haven't proven that Shurah could gain influence over the current system. Let me explain something - when you blow up a government building, that's a big statement, and super-influential. I don't see how the Shurah could fail in this respect even if they merely attempted to do it. I mean, just look at how well known Guy Fawkes is now.

And finally, I spent all of round 1 proving that the end result of my model would be superior. Among the advantages I showed were an end to the cycle of poverty, which more than justifies the resolution. Literally if only a single bad dictator is killed by some Shurah activist, then the program has more than fulfilled its purpose. It does, however, have plenty of potential to do more good for the entire region.

Far from being fallacious, this is a plan of last resort for the middle east. Everything else has failed, and it's time for a radical alternative to take hold. I look forward to the final round.

Return To Top | Posted:
2014-10-03 19:25:52
| Speak Round
BlackflagBlackflag (CON)
The Point: This Plan Will Fail Like All The Rest
While I don't believe my counter plans have actually failed, it honestly doesn't matter. That wasn't the point I was trying to represent.
Let's pretend that all three of these things have failed...
- Shiite Alternative
- Secular Alternative
- Young People Alternative 

I beg the question.... "Why would changing 1.57 billion people's religion, in a plot that my opponent conceded is meant to fail, work?"
There is not an iota of evidence to suggest this zany theory is true. It isn't built on logic. It isn't built on evidence. It is built on dreams and dreams alone.

My opponent hasn't answered one of the three questions I asked him the previous round. Why will this succeed where the others have not?

Fallacy Exposure: Attacking the Argument Based On One Example
I have no interest in spending four paragraphs defending Azerbaijan, one of several examples, to fill space. Let's be honest. The opposition wasted four paragraph's of the governments time arguing that one example wasn't good. Let's get back to my other examples.
- Djibouti, large economy, stable, bustling democracy.
- Indonesia, G-20 nation, stable, bustling democracy, third largest democracy. 
- Turkey, G-20 nation, stable, bustling democracy. 
- Albania, stable, large economy, high human rights

These nations are secular, and while not perfect, they have achieved a degree of human rights, economic prosperity, and civil liberties. To the point where it becomes unnecessary, and even grossly irresponsible to proceed with this plan. Out of the 5 nations who are true secular democracies with an Islamic Majority, at least 4 have been dropped by the opposition. Probably because he didn't have a legitimate rebuttal for these examples. 

Defending Azerbaijan and Shia: Because I Can 
I pondered whether I should go ahead and refute the four paragraphs of irrelevant fallacy the opposition made refuting one of four examples I made, but I decided proving Azerbaijan succeeded at least gives a little bit of merit towards disproving the opposition's resolution. I must set several things straight.
- Azerbaijan is corrupt
- Freedom House is a think tank which has been paid by the US government to promote specific views (Paid from treasury and corporations to insult Russia, Sudan, Cuba, China, and other countries that are against American Government or Corporate Interests) 
- Azerbaijan has a Shia majority, so it is natural for them to elect officials from a family descended from Muhammed
- Azerbaijan has a strong economy
- Azerbaijan is stable, and has little sectarianism between the two main sects.
- Azerbaijan has one a large population of both shiite's and sunni.

I affirm, that while Azerbaijan has its own problems, like any other third world country, it is stable, has a relatively high standard of living, and the people are afforded basic civil liberties. Civil liberties that can be fought for in their legislature. This alone is a reason to think twice about this policy of overthrowing the Islamic World.

      Furthermore, I would go as far to state Iran, another Shia state, has it better than most of the Islamic World. Yes, their laws are stupid and inhumane, and their politicians regularly make fools of themselves with their hilarious policies, but Iran does have a high human development index, a somewhat stable economy, and an average standard of living.

To go even beyond that, I must again claim, refuting the example doesn't refute the logic. Shia and Khawarij are practically the same. They both believe that clerics and Muhammed ancestry should have a stake in governments. It's just Khawarij believe violence is an appropriate means and Shiite's do not. The key difference, and the one that matters, is that Shia is already an established religion, and Khawarij only has a couple thousand followers. 

The Ends Justify The Means/Changing People's Beliefs for Political Gain
The opposition makes the claim that, just because something results in political gain, doesn't mean it isn't true. The opposition and I both know Khawarij isn't true, and if he does actually believe this, then it wouldn't be unreasonable for me to ask for evidence.

      The opposition isn't simply saying we need to change how people think to improve their life on earth. The opposition is clearly stating we need to change people's entire religion, way of life, and beliefs, in the interest of improving Muslims life on earth. "Just because something results in political gain, doesn't mean it isn't true", is perhaps the silliest statement to be made this debate. There are millions of religions, so by this logic, converting people to any of them can be justified, because hey, you can't prove that it's wrong.

      Changing people's religions for political gain is grossly in-humanizing, unless Khawarij is the true religion. If the opposition can't prove Khawarij is true, then this plan should be thrown back into the gutter it came out of. 

Young People Alternative 
Have young people truly failed in the past like the opposition claims? I think they haven't, and even if they did, it is a result of little effort and motivation. Aligning itself with my own beliefs on justification of the movement to begin with.
[P1] If an idea being put into action fails, then it is because the ends didn't justify the means
[C1] Attempts to implement change in the Islamic World in the past didn't succeed, because the ends didn't justify the means.

I don't believe young people have actually failed. It was the Young Turks who overthrown the shackles of the genocidal Ottomans and worked their way into becoming a global democratic power. It was college students that composed the Nationalist Army, and overthrew the Dutch, forming the worlds third largest democracy. Young people have tried, and succeeded. The reason they fail, is because they don't want to allign with the western way of life. 

It isn't that people in Yemen have it worst off than us. They just have it differently. If young people want to live in a democracy, it will eventually happen. If young people want to continue living in an Islamic Theocracy, then it will happen. There is no motivation to change their way of life, so if young people have failed to change the Islamic World in the past, what makes the opposition think they can do it in the future?

How This Benefits the United States
Where in the oppositions case is evidence that this helps the United States? I already affirmed that there is literally not enough money in the world to make this plan succeed. I already affirmed that the plan will hurt Americans more than it will help them. When will the opposition give a shred of credibility to how this will help the United States? Not only is this plan impossible, it is net-harmful and detrimental.

How will this help the United States, and how will our money change 1.57 billion people's religion? Perhaps the most decisive question of this debate.
The Resolution is Thoroughly Negated 

Return To Top | Posted:
2014-10-20 00:56:28
| Speak Round
adminadmin (PRO)
I thank my opponent for finishing his case.

This final round is a reply round, which is supposed to be for summaries. Even though my opponent missed the last round and thus used his reply round for substantive points. In fairness, I'll only offer summaries here.

Counter-models
My opponent has put forward several inconsistent ideas for how to solve the problem. None were unique or original. To the last round, he only continues to dispute the precedent of failure of two of his three alternative plans: young people and shia. But he does agree on two things: young people have tried to change things before, as has Shia, and things are not good enough now. These two facts alone should be enough to seal the counter-model issue. Ultimately my opponent has failed to shift the burden and thus it remains my responsibility to prove a Shurah model. If I have done that, I win the debate, irrespective of what other models my opponent has put forward.

He has tried to claim that Shia and Shurah are basically the same, but then also admits Shia is not outwardly violent while the Shurah are. Ultimately this is the most important feature of my model: Islam needs to kill their oppressors.

Rebutting examples
My opponent concedes that examples he puts forward are fallacies. If rebutting them is a fallacy, then making them must be a fallacy too. The fact is that there's no measure that my opponent could point to where Azerbaijan is NOT the most corrupt place in the world - simply because it is, and has been for a very long time. Civil liberties have long gone thanks to that corruption, which my opponent admits exists there. And the economy is ONLY strong because it has the fewest Shia out of any of the countries he named. Roughly 3 in 4 people in Azerbaijan are irreligious. I think my opponent made this point in the hope that I didn't know much about Azerbaijan. The other countries he has named are all better, but it only takes a single exception to disprove the rule, and they're not THAT much better to be acceptable.

De-humanizing
My opponent has several times asserted that my model devalues any religion that isn't true. He offers no proof of his assertions that de-humanization is bad, that Khawarij isn't true, or pretty much anything else on this point. He also tries to shift the burden on to me to disprove his assertion. Ultimately my opponent has not put forward nearly enough analysis for this point to hold.

Cost/won't work
My opponent has failed to provide any counter-analysis to my point that costs are inherently impacted by the law of diminishing returns. As such this point is entirely moot. The other key points here have been dropped by my opponent.

Summary
My opponent's attacks have all been dropped or fallen flat. He has not given nearly enough attention to my model and focused the debate on his own ideas of a counter-model. The key difference is that his counter-models are known failures. My model represents hope for the future of Islam.

The resolution is affirmed.

Return To Top | Posted:
2014-10-26 02:02:41
| Speak Round


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whiteflamewhiteflame
Goddamn, I really have to stop trying to refresh this page...
Posted 2014-10-26 05:50:25
whiteflamewhiteflame
I'll work on this, guys. Looks like the voting here is leaving something to be desired.
Posted 2014-10-26 05:49:59
whiteflamewhiteflame
I'll work on this, guys. Looks like the voting here is leaving something to be desired.
Posted 2014-10-26 05:48:36
adminadmin
woo hoo!
Posted 2014-10-26 05:31:07
whiteflamewhiteflame
I'll work on this, guys. Looks like the voting here is leaving something to be desired.
Posted 2014-10-26 05:07:37
adminadmin
Well it's your argument lol, I don't really care if it's mooted.
Posted 2014-10-26 02:34:52
BlackflagBlackflag
Lol'd at that final religion morality interaction

Legion: You have to prove khawarij is true
Admin: You have to prove khawarij isn't true

Let's flip a coin
Posted 2014-10-26 02:23:16
BlackflagBlackflag
Lol'd at that final religion morality interaction

Legion: You have to prove khawarij is true
Admin: You have to prove khawarij isn't true

Let's flip a coin
Posted 2014-10-26 02:22:38
BlackflagBlackflag
There's no way I can finish this unfortunately, but I really don't want the debate to end.
I just got to my computer unfortunately.
Posted 2014-10-10 19:01:53
adminadmin
Hmmm - I guess I feel like this might be overstepping it a little. Reason why is that if it was me in need of a few extra hours, I wouldn't give myself that extra time either. Otherwise people would shout that I rig debates in my favor. So I figure that for other people the policy should be the same. The only time I usually give extra time is when there's been a site bug that's impacted on somebody's ability to make their argument on time.
Posted 2014-10-10 11:23:00
BlackflagBlackflag
Admin, can you extend the debate by a few hours. I'm pressed for time by just a smidge.
Posted 2014-10-10 10:39:20
9spaceking9spaceking
I'm betting admin on winning.
Posted 2014-09-18 21:43:44
BlackflagBlackflag
I missed those Cx questions
Posted 2014-09-18 18:00:51
adminadmin
Sorry, I'm resetting that forfeit again because I still haven't been able to fix the bug.
Posted 2014-09-18 08:00:34
BlackflagBlackflag
Yo..........kay then
Posted 2014-09-13 21:00:58
Vajrasattva-LeRoyVajrasattva-LeRoy
Crazy Obama & his gang aren't the U.S.
They're BANKRUPT & Operating Way In The Red.

Islam, by definition, means submission to the will of God.
There is no such religion as submitting to the will of God.
Since people have been refusing to submit all along, Islam has to be False.
Posted 2014-09-13 20:20:07
adminadmin
It keeps doing it when I have 4 days left. Think it's related to CX, ie 3 days + 4 days = 7 days (length of rounds) but can't see how my code would do that. Will keep checking.
Posted 2014-09-04 05:11:37
adminadmin
I've been lazy and removed my round / reset the timer on this one, but I promise I'll put the argument up in the next day or so.
Posted 2014-09-01 05:10:11
BlackflagBlackflag
"Strangely, I thought I had another 4 days remaining. Somehow the times on this debate don't add up. I'll investigate and edit this debate if need be."
It said 4 days and 21 hours last time I checked.

"Because keeping a debate open where both debaters are just forfeiting every round makes no sense. We used to have that."
End the debate if two forfeits occur from the same user. Not one user and another.
Posted 2014-08-31 22:58:03
adminadmin
"Part of the cross examination got cut off"
No it didn't. I do know that for sure.

"What the hell? I wanted to continue arguing?"
Strangely, I thought I had another 4 days remaining. Somehow the times on this debate don't add up. I'll investigate and edit this debate if need be.

"Can you change the two forfeit rule?"
No

"I don't even understand why it exists"
Because keeping a debate open where both debaters are just forfeiting every round makes no sense. We used to have that.
Posted 2014-08-31 22:54:01
BlackflagBlackflag
Can you change the two forfeit rule?
I don't even understand why it exists.
Posted 2014-08-31 22:49:41
BlackflagBlackflag
What the hell? I wanted to continue arguing?
Posted 2014-08-31 22:48:20
BlackflagBlackflag
Part of the cross examination got cut off
Posted 2014-08-31 20:50:46
BlackflagBlackflag
I'm very excited for this debate. I'm interested in hearing how you will fill the burden of proof.
Posted 2014-08-12 05:49:09
The judging period on this debate is over

Previous Judgments

2014-09-01 02:20:26
9spacekingJudge: 9spaceking
Win awarded to: admin
Reasoning:
ff

Feedback:
don't ff
3 users rated this judgement as a vote bomb
1 user rated this judgement as biased
0 comments on this judgement
2014-09-01 02:42:32
bsh1Judge: bsh1
Win awarded to: admin
Reasoning:
FF
4 users rated this judgement as a vote bomb
1 user rated this judgement as biased
0 comments on this judgement
2014-10-27 03:38:49
whiteflameJudge: whiteflame    TOP JUDGE
Win awarded to: admin
Reasoning:
Pro points to the essential problems with Con's arguments in the final round - Con's focus on his counter models proves to be entirely ineffective at the point that he cannot separate them from status quo. The fact that these things appear to be happening in status quo leads me to an important question: what is Con doing to change things? He doesn't make that clear. Con sets out a very convincing case to start off his R1 explaining exactly why the status quo has been a failure, and Con's responses seem overly idealistic on how things will turn out, without any analysis as to why these aspects of the status quo will improve or have improved. Con gives some examples of how these things worked out at some distant points in the past, but in failing to respond to Pro's more current example of the Arab Spring (and allowing him to make the argument without rebuttal that it has been a dismal failure), Con sacrifices his counter models.

Which leads me to Pro's model. I don't know why Con spent so little time here. He basically just said "things won't happen like you say they will," but does almost nothing to tell me what actually would happen.

So the problem is two-fold here. First, much of the actual analysis provided by Pro in R1 remains unrebutted by the end of the debate. Second, his responses only introduce doubt that they will succeed without providing any reasoning for what would actually happen if the event Pro claims will occur actually take place.

The first issue at least leads me to doubt any counter-argument Con provides. Pro has many warrants, those warrants don't get touched, ergo the link stories are, at the very least, somewhat likely to occur.

That wouldn't be such a problem if Con had more than just uncertainty as an attack against Pro's case. The only real solvency takeout is the monetary issue, which Pro provides a rational response to that receives no argument from Con. The rest of Con's arguments seem to just focus on showing that Pro's case might not get its solvency, but only if Pro doesn't have any support for those arguments. Pro provides me with some, if minimal, support. That wouldn't be a problem if Con had offensive arguments to compare with it, or strong stated harms, but I see neither coming through to the end of the debate.

So, what I'm left with in the end is a question of whether Pro's case has a chance to solve for the problems that exist in status quo. I see his case as having some chance of accomplishing those goals, however faint. Ergo, I vote Pro.

Feedback:
admin - You certainly took this to case to unexpected lengths. Your case was far from air-tight, but it did the job it needed to do. Still, I feel that there's some links missing by the end of the debate that at least make me question whether implementing the case would have any significant effect. It seems to me that a lot of deaths occur among the leadership of various nations in status quo, not to mention major revolutions that seek their deaths. One might question how introducing a new agent of chaos - the Khawarij - would improve on such a chaotic situation. I can understand that the killings they bring about may, at some point, be effective at ending the tyrannical reign of current leaders, but it seems difficult to argue that their replacements are likely to be better, or even the ones after those. If Con had harped on that missing piece of your case and gone to the extent of explaining what's likelier to happen, I probably would have found that persuasive, so it's something to watch out for.

Legion: Don't hedge your bets on one piece of your case working out well, especially when there's so little explanation behind it. It seems as though you were making an effort to pursue your counter models, and yet never taking the time to explain them thoroughly, let alone completely respond to Pro's concerns that they are present in status quo. Pro's case had a lot of appropriate points of attack, and you have a lot of the knowledge you needed to make it clear that the more likely outcomes of his case were actually harmful to the world. That needed to be a persistent point in your case. By the end of the debate, if I bought one big harm and only distantly conceived of a way Pro's case could work out beneficially, I'd likely end up voting for you here.
1 user rated this judgement as biased
3 users rated this judgement as constructive
22 comments on this judgement
whiteflamewhiteflame
I'd like to know how my vote is being considered as biased and for what reasons.
Posted 2014-10-27 04:10:21
Legion Legion
It isn't
Posted 2014-10-27 11:42:30
adminadmin
At the time he said that, it was
Posted 2014-10-27 12:58:53
whiteflamewhiteflame
Mind explaining that, Lars? I'm a little lost.
Posted 2014-10-27 14:37:17
whiteflamewhiteflame
Nevermind... I feel dumb.
Posted 2014-10-27 17:19:22
Legion Legion
You did actually edit your vote. I'm not a huge fan of your reasoning, but you clearly read through and analyzed the debate, so I rated your vote good. Admin's right though, you edited a line at the very end of the judgement category that made me mark it bias.
Posted 2014-10-28 23:41:19
Legion Legion
While I do value independent opinions on debates, and I hardly ever feel I truly lost a debate I tried hard in, this vote seemed lacking. I wish there were more ways to express my feelings.

The vote is just way to short and speculative for what I consider an excellent vote.
Posted 2014-10-28 23:43:33
Legion Legion
One final note, when you make feedback, it shouldn't be relative to the topic at hand. It should be advice that can help a debater in future topic's.
Posted 2014-10-29 00:16:40
whiteflamewhiteflame
...What line? I'm seriously confused, Legion. I haven't edited the judgment once. Lars was referring to your initial judgment, which said it was biased. I'd like to know what you consider to be lacking in the decision. There were certainly arguments that didn't get direct mention here, but I don't think any of those arguments play a role in the outcome. As for the feedback, we have a difference of opinion there, though I don't think my feedback was less valuable for its specificity to the debate, especially as I've given you quite a bit of feedback on a number of your debates, and I didn't feel it was beneficial to repeat advice.
Posted 2014-10-29 02:56:43
Legion Legion
If you want advice on what would make this judgement better, I'm happy to give it. Give me sometime. For starters, you only said pro twice in that judgement, which is a big problem, when you mention me a couple dozen times.

Your entire vote acts like I have the BOP. In fact, you didn't even mention pro's proposal once. I think it is a poor vote, and it seems like the entire judgement were "Con didn't prove the proposal isn't true".

That's the honest truth.
Posted 2014-10-29 03:20:58
Legion Legion
I also think 75% of the vote was BS skim reading, considering you didn't give any context on what anaylisis was being referred to, how my rebuttals were idealistic, ergo false.

I've seen some professional judgements before, and this isn't one of them.
Posted 2014-10-29 03:22:41
Legion Legion
The #1 tip in being a good judge, and I'm using NZlockie and Admin as an example, is to always be specific about what you're talking about. Vague references like "Con didn't refute this well enough", or "the next point on Madrassa's was argued really well" doesn't show you truly understood the context of what you're reading.

To truly judge with impartiality, you actually need to reference the arguments made as you vote. Yes, it is 100% recommended you analyze specific arguments with specific reasoning.

I hate the "Pro's model is well anaylzed", IE, "Con didn't do enough to refute Pro's model"
Posted 2014-10-29 03:26:18
Legion Legion
Example Excerpt: One of the heaviest fault lines in the debate relates to Pro's assertion that the "plan is meant to fail". Pro stated that his plan, wasn't meant to succeed, but fail and create a new hegemony in place of the old one. Con refuted this proposal by establishing several structured alternatives that already are emplaced in the Arab World. The three counter examples were...
- Shia Change
- Secular Change
- Young People Change

Con argued that all these achieve the same goal as the "khawarij proposal". Pro tried to refute these counter examples by saying they didn't work in the past. The reason why Pro didn't win this argument, is because Pro admitted his plan was meant to fail, therefore foregoing a train of logical fallacies which contradict his own case. One that was meant to fail.

However, if one were to ignore how Pro's rebuttal is in direct conflict with his own assertion, we can still observe the weight of the counter examples themselves. Con's argument that Shia, Secularism, and Change are all better alternatives were backed up by historical and modern day examples, which not only proved moderate success, but took far less money, time, and resources to acheive.

Lastly, Pro made two fallacious assertions, which are classified as logical fallacies, that con must prove khawarij isn't the true religion, and con must prove the United State's can't pay for the plan.

This fallacy is known as shifting the BOP, which is the same as openly admitting to a flaw in the case. Therefore Con wins the debate.
Posted 2014-10-29 03:36:23
Legion Legion
^Sorry if that example seemed a little to honest, but I get frustrated when I lose a debate I was sure was a clear win. Forgive me of my skepticism, but your vote is probably biased if that's all the analysis you can give, completely missing the core ideals of the debate itself.

I can't shake this feeling that you were planning on voting admin the whole time, or possibly that your pride couldn't bring you to vote against him. Whatever the case, I respect your vote, and I respect the winner. If Admin won this debate, then I'm hoping that's proven through good votes, not biased one's.
Posted 2014-10-29 03:39:56
whiteflamewhiteflame
Before I start, there are an awful lot of very personal accusations in this response you're giving me. Especially considering I've taken a lot of time and effort to give you extensive feedback on a number of your debates, I don't much appreciate some of the skepticism provided here. It seems like you're hurt that you lost a debate you thought you had won, and I can understand that, but some of this criticism is hardly warranted and seems to come from your hurt feelings rather than any actual problems with my RFD. Considering much of what you said, I'm not sure you do “respect my vote.” I know if I thought these things about a vote, I wouldn't respect it. Still, I'll go through what you wrote.

When you hardly spent any time addressing Pro's proposal, it's difficult for me to spend a lot of time there in my RFD. You spent most of the time off-case, and Pro similarly put most of his rebuttal on your off-case, which meant that that was the focus of the debate. The only argument I saw on Pro's case was your mitigation, saying it was unlikely to occur with few if any warrants. So yes, the result is that the focus is on you. It's frustrating because, like you, I believe the focus should have been on Pro's case and it's likelihood of success. It wasn't, and that's mainly due to the argumentation being taken off of his link structure.

The burden of proof is still on Pro, you're right, but when you drop most of his analysis, it's difficult to see how he hasn't met it. The only way he doesn't meet it is if you showcase that the outcomes he describes in his case are either exceedingly unlikely or that they are outweighed by significant harms. As you didn't spend much time focusing on the former, the latter became the issue, but since that's your case and since that case also requires proof, the burden fell to you to prove that your contentions were true. Both sides have the burden of supporting their arguments. I don't think you managed to do much on that front, especially when Pro gave me more analysis on your most integral points.

I don't think I have to point to every single argument you've given in the debate in order to show that I've read it. I didn't want to make this pages and pages long, but if you really want the full feedback, give me an argument, and I'll state where the problem was, but it's unreasonable to state that I need to cover every argument individually in order to have a reasonable RFD. I'm not sure why you “think 75% of the vote was BS skim reading,” but that's a markedly unfair assessment.

As for your example, I think you're misrepresenting Pro's case. He didn't say it was “meant to fail.” The plan was meant to achieve it's goals of placing a new player in the power structure of many of these countries. That new player will be more violent than the rest, throwing the power structure into flux and forcing an overthrow of current regimes. He's telling me that the current regimes are the worst possible outcomes, and that you need something dramatic to be rid of them. Pro showed that all of your counter-models were a) status quo, and b) don't achieve the same goals as the Khawarij proposal, not to mention that they remain incredibly vague by the end of the debate and thus lack the substance to compete with Pro's model.

I ignored the “true religion” aspect because it wasn't imperative to the debate. It played no role in the decision because it doesn't matter if khawarij is a true religion, that seemed entirely besides the point. As for the payment issue, you really didn't spend enough time there. The cost argument was your contention. That's not shifting the BOP, that's him telling you that you need to back up your own arguments. His BOP was to show that his case was beneficial. Yours was to show that it's either a net 0 or harmful.
Posted 2014-10-29 16:36:03
Legion Legion
I still disagree. It is a weak vote, and I gave you legitimate reasons why. Ego is leading you to defend your vote rather than take the criticism.
Posted 2014-10-29 18:49:51
whiteflamewhiteflame
Legion, your criticism doesn't make any sense. You say my vote is weak because I didn't specifically address every argument made in the debate, and yet you provide no specific point that should have won you the debate that I didn't address. I've even offered to address your points here, in detail, and yet all you've provided is a misstatement of your opponent's argument, a number of points I covered, your perception on BOP, and other fallacies that didn't play into my decision. I accept that this decision wasn't as specific as it could have been, and I accept that it could have been better. But rating it "biased" and blocking me from your profile seems to have more ego behind it than any of my comments have.
Posted 2014-10-29 20:17:39
whiteflamewhiteflame
I'd just like to add that I have tried to move this discussion to direct messages between us, rather than extending this comments portion out further. I don't think it's necessary that we engage in this publicly, especially when the accusations appear to be awfully personal.
Posted 2014-10-29 20:54:00
Legion Legion
For clarity, you totally missed the mark on my feedback.
Posted 2014-10-29 23:46:04
Legion Legion
As far as I'm concerned, I just gave my opinion and am being drilled for it. If you don't like my feedback, then don't take it, but stop letting your ego turn this into an argument. It isn't one. This behavior of going AWOL over a vote rating isn't very appropriate.

I would love to talk to you over PM, but I'm afraid everything's been said. It looks like you're mostly interested in having the final word and appearing right.
Posted 2014-10-29 23:47:49
Legion Legion
Finally, I did temporarily block you. 100% of it having to do with me not wanting to continue this conversation. I'll unblock you when I feel you've let it go, as I certainly don't have to defend my rating at all.
Posted 2014-10-29 23:49:36
whiteflamewhiteflame
Alright, then I'll say this and be done: feedback isn't a one-way street. If it was a one-way street, there wouldn't be scores on judgments, and there certainly wouldn't be comments on those judgments. I asked for feedback, and I appreciate you giving it. But I don't understand it, and I'm having a harder and harder time doing so the more I read it. If I don't understand something, my response is not going to be "well, that's reasonable, thanks!" Just as your response to my judgment also comes from a lack of understanding, my response to your concerns is much the same.

But I could care less about a judgment rating. A score on a website like this isn't going to hurt my day. What I don't appreciate is the attitude you're bring to this. Maybe you're just really upset with me, maybe you feel I've aggrieved you somehow, or maybe you just didn't like getting an email from me asking for feedback. I really don't know, but it's very difficult to feel that I can continue as a coach to you if you're going to randomly block me from your account for sending you a single email asking for private feedback. Instead, you've made this a very public show of your disdain for my vote, calling me out for phantom sentences, "BS" and bias. I don't appreciate that, nor do I appreciate the apparent enmity you're displaying.

So if you want to have the last word, have it. I didn't come to this site to be derided in public and then told to blindly accept it, and I won't. I contend that my vote is anything but biased, though you seem to be the expert here. In the end, I decided to put a vote upon a debate that deserved more respect than that provided by the first two voters here. Apparently, that effort was just viewed as "75% skim reading" and "BS." So thanks for that. I'll make sure to keep that in mind before I choose to vote on future debates of yours.
Posted 2014-10-30 00:10:39

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