The Instigator
Stephen_Hawkins
Con (against)
Losing
13 Points
The Contender
RyuuKyuzo
Pro (for)
Winning
21 Points

RyuuKyuzo should be allowed in the DDO Debating League

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 10 votes the winner is...
RyuuKyuzo
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/3/2012 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,705 times Debate No: 26861
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (18)
Votes (10)

 

Stephen_Hawkins

Con

http://debate.org...

"Hmm? You won't let me in the club because my opponents thus far don't meet your standards?

That's a particularly weak reason for exclusion. So weak, in fact that I'm going to challenge you to debate me about it. The resolution will be along the lines of "RyuuKyuzo should be allowed to join the DDO League" -- something like that.

If I win, I'm in. If I lose, you're reason for exclusion is validated and you can be the guy who gets to say he took down my winning-streak. I think this would be a great opening debate for the league, don't you? ;)

Put your money where your mouth is, Stephen."

The burden of proof is on my opponent in this debate. He should post his argument in the first round, while skipping his final round (so we have the same number of rounds each).
RyuuKyuzo

Pro

Before diving into my arguments, humor me and my introductory gaiety. This is the most excited I've ever been for a debate on this site. This debate will be different from all my other debates in that in this debate I'm not just looking to win, but I am looking for my opponent to actually be convinced of my position and come to agree with it. If all goes well, this debate will end early with Con conceding.

I want it to be acknowledged that Stephen_Hawkins is the first person I've challenged to a debate in the forums to actually accept. He has earned my respect thusly.

Burden of proof accepted and my last-round skip is agreed upon.

Now, without further delay, I present to you my arguments.
________________________________________________________________________________________________

=======No "Good" Debates=======

My first argument will be against the claim Con has made that I don't deserve to be in the league due to my lack of "good" debates. It is my contention that I have, indeed, had "good" debates. I would argue that all my debates, at least from my end, are good debates as I do not post any arguments that I do not feel are thorough and concise. If con agrees with me that this is the case, then he should absolutely allow me in to the DDO league. Furthermore, I have indeed had debates that can be said to be "good" from both ends [1][2][3].
"Good" is ultimately subjective, but in any case these debates show that I am indeed a formidable debater who can more than handle well researched and well presented arguments against me.
Perhaps these debates aren't as "good" as Con would like, but that brings me to another point that I will outline in point 3.

=======Not for Lack of Trying=======

It's no secret that I am quick to challenge people to debates in the forums. Virtually everyone who knows me on this site can vouch for that (and I encourage you to do so if you feel so inclined). The problem isn't that I'm avoiding good debates. To the contrary, the issue is that nobody else before now has been willing to debate me (with the excepting of DeFool, but that debate never happened due to an out-of-debate resolution occurring). To illustrate the point, here are some examples:

a) In the thread titled "Why are you voting for Obama?", I issued a challenge to user LeafRod on the topic of race and IQ [4]. He declined.

It's worth noting that I went on to open this challenge to anyone in the thread. No takers.


b) In the same thread, I challenged user 000Ike to a debate on the topic of voting based spite vs. race [5]. He declined.

c) In the very first thread I ever created, I challenged user tarkovsky to debate me on the nature of "things" vs. "events [6]". He declined.

These challenges of mine have also been issued in the comments sections of debates:

d) In one of my debates' comments sections, I challenged user truthseeker613 to debate me on the topic of Israel-American relations [7]. No response.

e) In RoyLatham's debate on the 2012 presidential election, I challenged user DeFool to a debate on was was, in my opinion, a questionable RFD [8]. He agreed, but for reasons outlined in the comments section, this debate never happened.

It should be noted that, at the time of this, DeFool is also undefeated. I have more examples, but I've made my point.

=======Purpose of the League=======

Con has outlined 3 reasons for the existence of this league [9];
1) An easy way of setting up a lot of debates against good members
2) A way of recording the debates against good members
3) The best way of seeing how good you are at debating compared to the best of the best.

Note that the very first point is to allow for the set-up of good debaters vs. good debaters. I want to debate good debaters, but good debaters aren't the ones usually issuing debates -- and when they do it's either on a topic that I already agree with them on or a topic that I am too ignorant of to be a good debating partner myself. Other times, someone simply beats me to the punch [10].

This league is specifically designed for the purpose of helping people in my situation. Everyone in the league right now has the same problem as me (not enough "good" partners), the only difference is that I haven't been on as long as most of the current members and therefore haven't had as much opportunity to rack up a large repertoire of "good" debates (I only have 21 in total so far, mind you).

Essentially the circumstances are as such that I can't join because I don't have strong debating partners, but I don't have strong debating partners because I can't join.

I suppose I could set up some sort of group of strong debating partners in order to have these debates -- but then again one already exists -- the DDO league.

This is not by any means an exhausted list, but my character count is coming to a close and so I'll end prima facie case now.

=======Conclusion=======

I have established that I am, in fact, a debater skilled enough to be in this league (not to sound conceded, this is simply what I have to argue here) and I have much to offer the group. At this point I have engaged in 21 debates and I invite the voters to check them all out personally to see that I do, indeed, always make strong, well-stated arguments regardless of my opponent's experience or conduct within the debate.
Whenever I find myself in a confrontation in the forums (and elsewhere) I am always quick to press the option of debating the issue, it is merely the case that Con is the only one to really accept. Essentially, the only real argument for keeping me out of this league is that I haven't had many strong debating partners, a point which has nothing to do with my debating skill and also is a problem that would be fully rectified by granting me membership in this league. At this point I hope I have convinced not only the voters, but the other league members as well as my opponent himself that I should be in this league. If not, I have many more bullets in my chamber.

I look forward to your response.

=======Sources=======


1. http://debate.org...
2. http://debate.org...
3. http://debate.org...
4. http://www.debate.org...
5. http://www.debate.org...
6. http://www.debate.org...
7. http://www.debate.org...
8. http://www.debate.org...
9. http://www.debate.org...
10. http://www.debate.org...
Debate Round No. 1
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

The debate shall be quite simply. Firstly, I want to reiterate that the characteristics I set out for the league was what my opponent said, in as many words:

1) An easy way to create good debates against good members
2) A way to make them easily accessible
3) A way to rank yourself against the other top members of the site in an accurate way.

The requirement I set up was one with the intention to "create[s] a database of great debates between great debaters", to counter the problem of the current leaderboard: "The current leaderboard system is such that if you're a noob sniper you get a massive lead above anyone else who may do less but better debates" and create a judging clique where we can reasonably and dispassionately read good debates and judge them on their merits. I shall proceed to point out how my opponent does not meet the requirements stemming from the aim of the league, as well as how not meeting the requirement is of no severe consequence.

Poor debates make poor debating

I am a rebuttal debater. By that I mean that I debate as the second speaker in debates. For those unfamiliar in debating formats, usually there is an opening speaker and a rebuttal speaker. I am one of the latter. Rebutting on the fly, thinking on the spot, creating pathos as well as logos. These are all the things that make a good debater, in my eyes. Creating a speech without reference to your opponent is not a difficult feat: it's the on-the-spot nature that is important. As such, I always feel that debates where someone forfeits against me or writes barely anything is a real shame, because it means my quality of debate has to go down. How can I respond well to an argument which is:

"1.There is one evidence in the early 1990s, the American Association of University Women (AAUW) concluded that being in single-sex classes could rise a girl's self-esteem. Also in a later report, that same organization said girls performed better without boys in the classroom.In addition, many critics claim that all-female schools may actually be detrimental to a girl's education because they "reinforce regressive notions of sex differences".
2.Harvard researcher Carol Gilligan has done important work on adolescent girls. She's let people see how different they are from boys their age-their learning styles, their value system, the cultural messages they observe."[1]?

Similarly, my opponent cannot be expected to respond well either. Unfortunately, this is similar with the vast majority of his debates. Many of them seem to be "noob-sniping" debates (intentional or no) against lesser members on the site. This has led to the vast majority of the debates he has participated in to be forfeits[2]. Even in the better debates he cites, forfeits are apparent[3]. With this in mind, it seems particularly foolish to allow someone to enter what is desired to be "great debates". Thus, my opponent does not match this level yet. If my opponent had competed in stronger debates, then he would more likely be classed as a great debater. Unfortunately, he has not.

Poor debate resolutions create poor debates

Secondly, my opponent's debates themselves are not contentious. Firstly, take a look at my personal favourite debater on the site: bluesteel. His most recent debate is one of the exemplar resolutions: "The United States should subsidize college students with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) majors". It holds three characteristics:

1) It is very contentious
2) It can be argued in more than one form as CON (either no subsidies, or 100% funding)
3) It has scholarly merit on both sides

Though the second one is usually not important, the first and third are vital to any debate topic. By comparison, this is the current resolution title of my opponent's open challenge:

"Ancient Astronaut Theory is Bunk"

This is the title of my opponent's best debate (in my eyes):

"Everyone who has the ability to adopt a vegan diet should do so"

And this is the title of my opponent's idea of one of his best debates:

"Should we implement a eugenics program"

Also, the example of evidence for allowing him to join the league, my opponent put:

"topic of race and IQ"

Each time, my opponent took the non-controversial, uncontested position. These are not heavily debated. In fact, they are hardly debatable. Even in the vegan debate, his opponent could not manage to link his argument back to the resolution. As such, I contend further my opponent has not competed in great debates.

Poor opponents make poor debates

Finally, I contend my opponent has not competed in debates against great debaters. To seperate this from the first argument, I contend here that my opponent has not gone up against a great debater on an issue as of yet. To put it simply, my opponent has done many debates, but none of them against great debaters. I haven't seen my opponent debate someone in the 90th percentile, yet alone a 'great debater'. This isn't difficult: set up a challenge with a restriction to ten or more wins, or twenty+ wins, on a contentious issue, and one will come along and take the challenge. However, my opponent has not as of yet done so (excluding this debate). Also, look at the examples of people he has challenged to debates but declined: LeafRod, with only two debates ever done, one a rap and the other a haiku debate. These are not examples of good debates, but bad ones. As such, it is unreasonable to grant him an addition to the league in question.

"More bullets in the Chamber"

I am always hasty with such a statement. It reminds me of Hitler's book 100 Authors against Einstein, about their faults in Einstein's theory of relativity. Einstein's response was wittily accurate:

"If I were wrong, one would be enough!"

As such, I wonder what my opponent here means by saying he has many arguments left. Does he mean he saved his 'best 'til last?' If so, then what was the point of presenting weaker arguments? Or are they the weaker arguments in reserve? If so, why would they more likely convince me than these better ones? It never seems like a good technique in my eyes.


Conclusion

To make this clear, not joining the league does not exclude my opponent from anything: it just allows good debaters to register their wins against good debaters clearly (and gloat over a glass of scotch sitting in the luxurious armchair of the secret DDO lounge in front of a roaring fire, waiting for Jeeves to bring back the plans for world domination not plot to conquer the world). It is for the better debaters to register themselves and debate other great members and get better judging for their best debates. Not for noob sniping debates like the ones my opponent (and I) have done in the past. This does not exclude my opponent from challenging skilled debaters: just as I have accepted this debate, he can challenge other debaters. Some like myself or royalpaladin accept challenges emerging from forums repeatedly, while others (000ike for instance) do not. However, my opponent is at no larger a disadvantage than anyone else on the issue. I do not think, and I imagine voters will feel the same, that you are incapacitated in some regard to debating better opponents. Finally, this is not me telling my opponent he is a bad debater. For what it is worth, I feel he will become a great debater in the future. However, he simply is not now.

With that, I want to thank my opponent and wait for my opponent's next round.



1 - http://debate.org...;
2 - http://debate.org...
3 - http://debate.org...
4 - http://debate.org...
RyuuKyuzo

Pro

Let's jump right into this.

=======Rebutalls=======

-----Noob Sniping-----

Con essentially opens his arguments by accusing me on noob sniping. He in no way was abrasive or offensive about it, so no offence is taken, however before I go about dismantling this claim I want it to be made clear that being a noob-sniper does not, in any way, mean that I am not a good enough debater to be in this league. It is entirely possible that I am a noob-sniper who happens to be among the best debaters overall. Therefore, even if I couldn't defend myself against this claim, it would not be reason enough to keep me out of the league.

a) First off, I am a noob. I have only been on this site for 3 months. Many of you would still consider me a noob, but even if you are one such person who no longer thinks I am a noob, consider that most of my debates took place when you would have considered me a noob. I ask the voters, can a noob be guilty of noob-sniping? At that point, I'm merely debating my peers. Perhaps I'm a better debater than my peers, but being a better debater than my fellow noobs shouldn't be what keeps me out of the DDO league -- that makes no sense whatsoever.

b) As I pointed out in R1, I've deliberately challenged literally every person who has come to a confrontation with me on this site. This very debate is evidence of this. You cannot blame me for "noob-sniping" when non-noobs refuse my debate challenges and rarely open debates themselves.

c) I never (or at least almost never) go into a debate expecting an easy win. Even debates where my opponent has plagiarized his entire argument, I don't simply walk in, point this out and expect to get votes. I put in the effort to make counter-arguments all the same in case my opponent does, in fact, plan on continuing. This debate is evidence of that [1]. Even if the bulk of my opponents are noobs, I never debate in the spirit of noob-sniping and therefore I cannot be called a noob-sniper.

To conclude this point, it is my contention that "noob-sniping" is absolutely acceptable if 1. you are a noob (or close enough), 2. non-noobs typically turn down your challenges and 3. you are looking for ways to no longer be dependant on noobs for a steady-stream of debating partners -- such as applying for the DDO League.

-----Non-contentious Resolutions-----

Con insinuates that the resolutions of debates I've taken/made are not contentious and that I always take the majority position. First of all, taking the majority position does not mean I am not a good debater. Anyone can click on over to these debates and judge for themselves if I won purely because I had the easier position, or if I did in fact argue my points well enough to deserve said wins.

Let's look at the points Con has brought forth;

1. Ancient Astronaut Theory is Bunk
- The very first person to comment in that debate adhered to this theory, and only refused to take the debate due to the debates specifics -- to which I offered to debate him under his terms (no response so far. Big surprise, I know). Furthermore, the History Channel made a 42 part series on this theory (4 seasons, 42 episodes) and new episodes are still being made to this day [2]. Millions of dollars have been spent on advertising this theory and people have based their entire careers on it. I contend that it's absolutely fair to want to debate this topic and that it is absolutely contentious due to its popularity.

2. Everyone who has the ability to adopt a vegan diet should do so
- To suggest that this is not contentious is rather insulting to the vegan community. Yes I was in the majority by taking Con, but I invite the voters to check out this debate for themselves to see if this was an easy win for me or not [3]. Consider that RoyLatham, the man whom I consider to be the best debater on this site, had the following to say about my performance in that debate;

"Very well argued by Con, with point-by-point refutations. Basically, Pro supposed that a vegan diet was the only alternative to a diet with a lot of meat, and Con exposed the errors in that supposition." [3]

If I have Roy's seal of approval, who is anyone else to say otherwise?

Con points out that my opponent in that debate couldn't link his arguments to his resolution. This was a point that I made in that debate and used it to secure my victory. If anything, this fact is reason FOR allowing me to join, not against.

3. Should we implement a eugenics program
Again, look for yourself to see if I won merely because I was the majority position or if my arguments warranted this victory.

4. Race & IQ
Firstly, I am NOT in the majority on this issue. I am of the position that the vast majority of the race-IQ gap (say, 80%) is due to genetics. This sort of position would make me a social pariah if I made this public. Even in that thread, it was a fairly even split of pros and cons.

Now consider the resolutions of my other debates to see if I do or do not debate contentious resolutions. Zoos do more harm than good, steroids in sports, Privatize Education, Mitt Romney's name is more swell Barack Obama's etc. [5]

That last one is nothing but contentious. There is no objective measure for the "swellness" of a name, so winning or losing such a debate comes entirely down to raw debating skill.

-----No Great Partners-----

Con says I have had no great opponents yet. Perhaps this is the case, but then being in the league would solve this problem immediately (which is why I want to join). Con points at LeafRod and states that he only had 2 debates. What Con probably isn't aware of is that LeafRod had another account that had been banned. LeafRod goes on to explain this in that thread [4]. How good was he? I don't know, but the point is he was not a noob.

Furthermore, I would be more than willing to challenge any of the "great" debaters in the forums as well, it just so happens that the best debaters on DDO tend to be the same people who don't say stupid things in the forums (go figure). This is hardly my fault.

I could always start a debate and set the restriction to 10+ wins, but I have a hard enough time getting people to debate me with no restrictions. Consider that in the LeafRod thread, I actually upped the stakes so that if LeafRod could beat me in a debate on that topic, I would close my account and leave DDO forever [4]. He still refused.

-----More bullets-----

Con mentions a quote from Einstein;

"If I were wrong, one would be enough!"

I will remind Con that in the very first arguments I made in R1 I said the following;

"I would argue that all my debates, at least from my end, are good debates as I do not post any arguments that I do not feel are thorough and concise. If con agrees with me that this is the case, then he should absolutely allow me in to the DDO league."

The first thing I did in this debate is acknowledge that my first argument was enough to justify letting me join. So, thank you, Einstein. I contend that all of my arguments are enough on their own. Putting them together just makes efficient use of the character limit. ;)

=======Conclusion=======

My opponent tried to establish me as a noob-sniper whose record represents a slew of easy-wins. While my opponents may not have been the best DDO has to offer, this has absolutely no bearing on the skill-level showcased in the arguments I made in those debates. The fact of the matter is, I have shown that I am a good enough debater to be in the league. My opponents haven't been great, but my opponent's skill is largely out of my control and should not be the deciding factor in whether or not I am good enough to join.

I look forward to your response.


1. http://debate.org...
2. http://en.wikipedia.org...
3. http://debate.org...
4. http://www.debate.org...
5. http://debate.org...
Debate Round No. 2
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

Noob Sniping

Firstly, I'd like to state quickly what noob-sniping is, in my eyes, as it is entirely possible my opponent missed the point. Noob-sniping is going against opponents with one, two debates, being on the site for no more than a few days, and end up leaving the site for good before they complete even one debate. We have a lot of these on the site. My opponent, though, has most of his debates in the field of "noob-sniping".

Now, point a is my opponent explicitly stating "I am a noob", and debating new debaters my opponent explicitly states means he is "merely debating his peers". As such, he seems to be admitting that his standard of debaters is at this level. Not at the standard demanded by the league in question he is trying to get into. Being a good amateur is all well and good, but we would not let a chess player with 21 wins at school level go against Kasparov, would we? No, because debating incredibly weak opponents does not make you a good debater. There is no barrier put up that stops my opponent from debating better debaters, and his complaint that he cannot do so is not my fault, nor anyone in the league's fault, and we do not have the responsibility to accomodate him.

Rebuttals are the most important in debating

To say this again, I feel that rebuttal debating is the most important. I made this clear to my opponent. Yet he cites a debate to us which is another example of a debater picking an uncontentious issue and plagiarising, with no rebuttal. As such, it would be ridiculous to accept someone on these grounds.

Non-contentious issues

Uncontentious resolutions such as the ones I presented means that it is near impossible for CON to win. Promoting eugenics, for example, requires an astoundingly skilled debater, while countering it is just a simple plea to emotion and precedence fluffed up a bit. The astronomical theory is a good example of the argument I put forwards. It is a TV stunt, not a scientifically accepted hypothesis. If anyone seriously contends this is a highly debated issue, I urge a vote against me. However, if you see any of the memes (or even the show, and I'm sorry for you if you had) and realise that it is a laughable idea, then I urge a vote CON. The eugenics debate is the same: no-one takes this as a serious position. It is unreasonable to expect my opponent to call this a 'good debate'.

Finally take the vegan debate. Roy pretty much said what I wrote before: PRO had no ability to link his arguments back to the resolution. One could simply have put "No argument links back to proving the resolution" and one would have refuted his opponent's case. This is not a sign of a great debater, but rather one with eyes and the ability to read.

Also, I want to point out the contentious debate that has made my opponent think it is good to join the scholarly DDO Debating League (That is, a debating league aimed at high quality debates on contentious philosophical, political or economic issues) is "Mitt Romney's name is more swell Barack Obama's". How is this possibly able to be classed as a scholarly debate? One cannot be expected to class someone as a 'great debater' for scholarly debating if this is his idea of a good debating resolution.

Bad opponents

My opponent in the long and short concedes this. He claims he challenged Leafrod, and he said no because " I don't come to Debate.org for debates". Moreover, Leafrod still isn't a 'great debater'. Cirrk, phantom, Roylatham, Cody_Franklin, Danielle, imabench, lordknukle, there are a lot of debaters that are of the greats (and I apologise to those I missed out) that can be challenged. The fact that my opponent has not got a debate from one of these is of no fault of my own, and I have no responsibility in this regard. I do not force debates in the league, all I do is record them. The league gives no help to any debater, nor forces people to debate. It just exists as a record.

One bullet in the chamber

The fact that there are no more arguments by my opponent implies he has presented his entire case. As such, I'll move on from this point.

Conclusion

To conclude, my opponent hardly managed to rebut each of my points - which is predictable, as it is based on simple observation. Without participating in contentious debates, against good debaters, or even in good debates, it is unfair to those who take part with the wish of recording their debates against he best debaters on the site to have worse debaters take part. As such, I urge a vote CON.
RyuuKyuzo

Pro

=======Noob Sniping=======

Once again, even if I can be called a noob-sniper, that does not mean I'm not also good enough for the league. This is an obfuscation tactic as it shifts the focus from my actual debating skill onto my past opponents' debating skill. Keep in mind that Con concedes that he sees (the potential for) a great debater in me, it's just that I've had no great opponents. In other words, he is keeping me out not due to my skill, but due to the skill level of other people. If you focus on the merits of my debating skill instead of the skill of my opponents (which is the way it should be) then it is undeniable that I should be a member.

I invite everyone who feels so inclined to check out my debates for themselves to see if my win streak is merely due to weak opponents, or if my arguments would indeed be able to stand against even great debaters -- a point my opponent has not been able to show wrong.

Con claims there is no barrier between me and debating good opponents. If no such barriers exist, then what need is there for the league? Ultimately its purpose is to allow an easier set up for great debaters to debate great debaters -- and in the DDO League thread it's clear that the general consensus is that finding a steady stream strong debating opponents and interesting resolutions is difficult. RoyLatham himself admits this:

"I hope it works. It's tough to good debates." [1]

If even Roy has this problem, then it's clearly not just me.

Go ahead and click to the challenge periods. There are 8 of them (not including me). I am the only currently open challenger who has at least 10 debates under his belt -- and 5 of them have 0 debates.

--

Short of spam-challenging everyone on page 1 of the leader board (or joining the league), there's not much I can do to improve my situation. I issue challenges to anyone who confronts me (I can't be blamed if no-one con would consider great has done this) and I treat every debate I take as though my opponent will have great skill. After all, being a noob says nothing about your debating skill. I won my first 3 debates, so I always give my noobier opponents the benefit of the doubt when it comes to their skill level and put out the best argument I feel can be made.

It ultimately doesn't matter though, because, as previously stated, the focus should be on my arguments, not my opponents' when it comes to judging me for admission.

=======Rebuttals Are Most Important=======

This is opinion, plain and simple. I could just as easily say that ones prima facie case is the most important since everything in a debate stems from it. He further asserts that my debates have been on uncontentious issues. More opinion. Anyone can click over to my debates and determine for themselves if these topic are worth debating or not. Once again, Con is attempting to judge whether or not I deserve to enter based on the skill level of everyone but me -- and he does this because he knows that if he were to focus on my actual arguments, there would be no room for contention. I would be in.

=======Non-contentious issues=======

Con states that arguing for eugenics is incredibly hard while arguing against takes little more than fluff and emotion. Honestly, this is insulting. Once again I find myself inviting the voters to see for themselves if what Con says is an accurate portrayal of my debates. See for yourself if my arguments in that debate are little more than fluff and emotion [2], I assure you that this is not the case at all.

Con states the following;

"If anyone seriously contends this is a highly debated issue, I urge a vote against me."

This is where con losses the debate. This issue is nothing BUT highly debated. There is a 3 hour documentary on the series doing nothing but contending the claims of the series [3]. Entire websites have been dedicated to contending this theory, both for and against [4][5][6]. One Dr. Michael Heiser has made his career based on contending the evidence for this theory, which can be seen on his website which he started over a decade ago [7].

To say that this issue is not highly or seriously debated is shockingly wrong. People have built their names in the field based on this issue -- and since con has wagered this debate on this issue, he has lost the debate.

Con is putting words into Roy's mouth. It should be noted that Roy went on to argue with my opponent in the comments section, so at least Roy felt that this person was worth opening a dialog with. It should be noted that I didn't merely point out the disconnect between my opponent's arguments and his resolution -- I did in fact take on his arguments as well (as Roy said himself). Once again, Con is trying to brush aside MY showcased skill and focus solely on my opponents mistakes. Its easy to say my opponents is a weak debater after he's already been beaten. If con dared to focus on my side of the equation, this debate would be over in my favour instantly -- and he knows this.

The point of me bringing up the "name swellness" debate wasn't to showcase a scholarly debate, but a debate with no objectively correct answer that relies solely on debating skill. To argue against this point by saying that the resolution isn't scholarly is to miss the point of me bringing it up entirely.

=======Bad opponents=======

This was largely dealt with in my first argument of this round. See above.


=======I have already won=======

I'm running out of space (as I did last round) so I'll pump out one final bullet before turning the debate over to con. I did intend to make more arguments last round, but real estate is limited. Anyway...

If at this point you are not already fervently against me on this debate, then it means I have at least held my own in this debate. Consider that my opponent is a member of the league (he started it) and so if I can hold my own against him, then it can be said that I am on par with him in debating skill -- which must mean that I am good enough to join so long as con is considered good enough to join. Even if you aren't impressed by my track record, this debate itself is proof that I have the chops to be in the league. This is a foregone conclusion.

Speaking of conclusions

=======Conclusion=======

My opponent's main argument thought this debate has been attacking my opponents skill level instead of the skill level I showcase in my arguments. Keep in mind, this debate in on whether or not I am good enough to join, not my past opponents'. It should raise suspicion that con's focus is on them, not on me. I have done more than what would be reasonable to expect for me to get into high-profile debates (attempting to join the league among other things). Unless one honestly contends that I should have spent my early time here spam-challenging the locals, arguing against my repertoire is an impotent attack. Even con concedes that I have what it takes (at least in theory), so my admission shouldn't even be debatable unless my past opponent's skill is more important than mine in decideing this, which should not be that case.
Furthermore, con has wagered this debate on a point that I've since proved, thereby eliminating him as a candidate for this debate's winner. Finally, even if you simply cannot separate my arguments from the debating skill of my past opponents, this debate alone shows that I am at least the bare-minimum when it comes to required debating skill -- unless con plans to argue that he isn't worthy of being in the league either.

That's all fro me. My opponent now has the floor. I would like to thank him for giving me this chance to make my case and I look forward to debating him again in the future -- as a league member.


1. http://debate.org...
2. http://debate.org...
3. [video]
4. http://ancientaliensdebunked.com...
5. http://arcturi.com...
6. http://www.alienswerehere.com...
7. http://sitchiniswrong.com...

Debate Round No. 3
Stephen_Hawkins

Con

Noob sniping

My opponent concedes that the vast majority of his debates are noob snipes, to such an extent that there are no real 'great' debates that he can be said to have done. He then shifts to a red herring stating that I claim that my opponent has the capacity to become a 'great debater'. To restate, I am sure my opponent has it in him, when he gains more experience and does more difficult topics, to become a great debater. We simply cannot see his skill clearly because of the fact that he lacks scholarly and good debates.

Bad opponents

My opponent asks "if no such barriers exist [to finding good opponents], then what is the point of the league?" I do not understand why this question comes up here. The purpose of the league was expounded in my original post. The system was to create a database of good debates between the best members of the site. The explicit purpose was not to have "set opponents on set topics", but instead "your debates have a larger reach than just a win on your dozen of others, but will give you more gloating rights here". If my opponent's argument for joining the league is to give him more debates, then ultimately he does not understand the purpose of the league and thus does not deserve to be on the list.

Moreover, the recent tournaments, including the newbie tournament and official DDO Open each had slots which my opponent could fill. However, he chose not to, and instead complains about not having any good debate tournaments to take part in (against peers or otherwise). These tournaments are in easy sight (currently above the DDO League post in the forums), so it is not due to any inability my opponent has.

My opponent then goes on to complain that it is not his fault, then blame me for not giving him a place in the league. The fact of the matter is, my opponent lacks the evidence. If my opponent went to a university for a place in, say, a maths degree course, without the proper qualifications, then pointed to the fact that twenty-one people - no, let's say a million people - without even a GCSE/Middle school qualification in the subject say he's good at maths, then he won't get in. The same applies here. Until he can get the qualifications, then I reserve the right to say "no".


Bad topics

There's not much to say here. People have spent their entire life trainspotting, but it is still a minority and uninteresting thing (sorry to the trainspotting fans out there). People have spent their whole lives debating that the earth is flat. It's not a scholarly topic. It is not highly debated. I do accept people have made names on the field, becoming infamous quacks. Only those whose lives revolve around conspiracy theories (cough cough Geo cough) become infamous as a result.

The Importance of rebuttals

Yes, my opponent is right: he can equally say that opening arguments are most important. However, he is not the one setting up, running, and maintaining the system. My opponent's opening pitch may be skilled, but his rebuttals themselves can be called into question on scholarly issues. When looking at debates, the best ones are the ones with great rebuttals. The opening pitch is still strong and important, but without a rebuttal to continue the argument , the whole thing is moot.

Not contentious issues

Eugenics debate simplified:
Argument One: Boo totalitarianism
Argument Two, Three, Four, Five: Doesn't work

I don't see why I had to go through that. His opponent picked up on this as well.

"I've already missed the point"

My opponent can do this debate a hundred times over, and it won't count in favour of him in admission to the league. Why? To say it again: the purpose of the league is scholarly debate and material. This is not a scholarly debate. As such, it cannot count in favour of (or against) him in admission. Thus, this debate itself does not affirm the resolution.

Conclusion

The way to register a great debater is to see how they go up against the great debaters of their time. When I first debated, I was arrogant and was honestly quite bad[1]. When I debated more I could see more and more about how I could do better. I learnt a lot from my losses, moved on, and now I'm slightly better than before. Would the debate I did with DanT back then be worthy to go among the idea of "great debates"? No, of course not.

The purpose of the league is to form a database of great debates between great debaters. My opponent has not yet shown capability to being able to be classed as a 'great debater', has not done any 'great debates', and not been up against 'great opponents'. There is no case for him to be accepted in the league.

Keeping in conduct to allow the same number of rounds each, my opponent should just post a "thank you" or similar in his final round. Thank you for reading.


1 - http://debate.org...;
RyuuKyuzo

Pro

Welcome to the anti-round.

Needless to say, I disagree with Stephen, but as agreed I will not be arguing this round. Instead, please enjoy this performance from the greatest living female singer, Cecilia Bartoli.

Once again, I thank Stephen for agreeing to debate me and for setting up the debate.
Debate Round No. 4
18 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 4 years ago
Stephen_Hawkins
A fair bit of conversation amongst ourselves. A fair few debates discussed and passed about. Unfortunately, not dozens of high-profile debates.
Posted by Maikuru 4 years ago
Maikuru
So, how's the league doing these days?
Posted by RyuuKyuzo 4 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
Roy, you've been replaced.
Posted by Maikuru 4 years ago
Maikuru
Who needs Roy when you've got me?
Posted by RyuuKyuzo 4 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
Hmm. I'm surprised that con got a couple votes there =/

I'm especially surprised that Roy voted against me. That one stings, not gunna lie.
Posted by RyuuKyuzo 4 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
F-16, if you found yourself going back and forth every round, then I've proved my point.
Posted by GreenTeas 4 years ago
GreenTeas
Swap PRO and CON in my comments. I mistakenly referred to PRO as CON and vice versa.
Posted by GreenTeas 4 years ago
GreenTeas
CON"s conclusory statements regarding the quality of his debates do not constitute evidence of good debates. He did argue that his debates were concise and coherent, but he fails to provide any evidence of why this would qualify him as "great" and not simply an "average" debater. Moreover, CON failed to address PRO"s contention that debating skill isn"t adequately showcased unless it is against a good opponent who will challenge CON. CON"s response was that he had difficulty finding skilled opponents. Perhaps true, but it is irrelevant to the issue of whether CON meets PROs criterion " instead, it is only relevant to why CON does not satisfy the criterion.

Overall, CON didn"t meet his burden of establishing that he was a "great debater." CON was unable to counter PRO"s definition of a "great debater" by showing he met that definition, nor did CON clearly attempt to show that he met an alternative definition of a "great debater."
Posted by GreenTeas 4 years ago
GreenTeas
The only relevant issue in considering if CON should be admitted into the league is whether he satisfies PRO"s single criterion " i.e., that he be a "great debater." The purpose of the league as a database for debates or to improve debate opponents is wholly irrelevant to whether CON is currently a great debater.

PRO presents a compelling argument that, in order to satisfy this criterion, CON must have a record of good or great debates. PRO argues that CON has largely faced low-quality opponents, and points out that a good debate will necessarily be dynamic and involve interplay between each sides" arguments and objections. This dynamic does not exist when one opponent is so weak that they fail to present coherent objections against the other side. The struggle between opposing sides is the crux of debate and sheds light onto the quality of a debater. Without this evidence, PRO cannot conclude that CON is a great debater.

CON was unable to rebuff PROs definition, and further failed to provide adequate positive evidence that he was a great debater. CON is correct that noob-snipers can be great debaters and that the poorly worded resolutions themselves do not necessarily preclude him from being a great debater. The problem, however, is that CON failed to establish that he was a great debater, even if these other contingencies have no bearing on whether he is great.

<CONTINUED IN NEXT COMMENT>
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 4 years ago
Stephen_Hawkins
F-16, it'd be good if you can actually vote though as well :P
10 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by utahjoker 4 years ago
utahjoker
Stephen_HawkinsRyuuKyuzoTied
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Reasons for voting decision: The debate came down to what is a "good debate" and hearing both sides Pro showed that in fact the debates he as been apart of are indeed good.
Vote Placed by MochaShakaKhan 4 years ago
MochaShakaKhan
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Reasons for voting decision: The "who's name is more swell" debate pro sourced settles this debate. It's a debate that requires skill alone since it could easily go either way, and the best con could come up with to counter is to say that it's not a scholarly issue. the thing is, if it establishes that pro has the needed skill, then it doesn't matter what the topic is, I'm sure that skill would carry over. Con did ignore at least one of pro's examples of a good debate, and it seemed like cons arguments against the debates he did respond to were particularly weak. Pro out-did con in sourcing, but he made several spelling errors like in his last round where he said "that's all fro me", so spelling/grammar points go to con.
Vote Placed by AlwaysMoreThanYou 4 years ago
AlwaysMoreThanYou
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Reasons for voting decision: I forgot all about this debate; something this intense definitely deserves to be voted upon. While I do feel that Pro made a good argument that he is a good debater, and certainly his record shows him to be far from a novice, the main argument Con made that I felt stood was that Pro had failed to have a resume of the sort of high class debate a league as exclusive and intellectual as the DDO Debating League ought to have had. It seemed that Pro more or less conceded that he hadn't had stellar debates, and while that was probably not his fault, it is a sufficient reason for refusing entrance to the league.
Vote Placed by TigerTime 4 years ago
TigerTime
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Reasons for voting decision: I didn't see any real difference in skill between these two debaters, so if Stephen_Hawkins is allowed in this league, I don't see why ryukyuzo shouldn't. I checked out both debater's profiles so I could see if there's a big difference in track record, and while pro does seem like a noob sniper, con is basicaly a nob sniper too. He does have several debates with non-nobs s well, but he tends to lose those debates so it doesn't realy mater. I don't agree that you need god opponents before people can see if you are good or not. Pro made good counter arguments against his opponents, even their original arguments were weak. Con also said to vote against him if anyone seriously thinks ancient aliens is highly debated, pro showed that it is, so I guess I should vote fully against con? This was well debated on both sides, so I don't think con should lose all 7 points, so I'll just vote conduct
Vote Placed by Chicken 4 years ago
Chicken
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Reasons for voting decision: "First off, I am a noob.", which Con successfully turned in R3. Pro fails to successfully refute Con's turn, rather distorting his original claim into "Potential" format. The problem with this is Con clearly stated the turn applies to the rules, meaning Pro cannot actually be debating good people if he is at the "noob" standard, regardless of potential. While I obviously don't agree with this (Upon looking at Pro's record), I am inclined to vote Con based off of the ink on the paper, Rather, R2's Concession by Pro and R3's turn of the concession, labeling it under a major impact that would be the only real weighing factor in this round, as there was no other way for me to actually vote off of a specific argument. The round was a bit muddled, but overall great job on both sides.
Vote Placed by emospongebob527 4 years ago
emospongebob527
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Reasons for voting decision: Good Torvald.
Vote Placed by Torvald 4 years ago
Torvald
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Reasons for voting decision: To clarify my vote, since Emospongebob, anxious for an opportunity to play the knave, has come to the erroneous conclusion that I vote-bombed the debate, here are my reasons for voting each point to Pro (I have revised my vote, having re-read the debate while awake): Con urged for a Con vote, a default Conduct deduction in my book. On further re-examination, apparent grammatical errors on the part of the Con were quotations which included informal forum language. Both sides made compelling arguments, and refuted the other side's points fairly well. Sources are still an obvious point, since Con listed 6, Pro listed 22. I recognize that my revised vote actually lowers Pro's score. However, I hope that the three fewer points will inspire certain counter vote bombers who are actually just vote bombers, to consider revising their own votes. Also be aware that I am willing to listen to the perspective of any party, regarding my vote's placement. Preferably in the comments.
Vote Placed by GreenTeas 4 years ago
GreenTeas
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Reasons for voting decision: See the comments for my explanation...
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 4 years ago
RoyLatham
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Reasons for voting decision: I don't like having subjective selection; much better to take the top 100 Elo scores. Nonetheless, Con won this debate. Pro admits he hasn't succeeded in getting debates with top debates, and that he's been debating noobs. I looked in detail at the vegan debate, and Pro won despite a bunch of debating mistakes. Getting good debates is tough, but it can be done through forum challenges and tournaments. I suspect the League will peter out fairly quickly, but it's worth a try.
Vote Placed by Maikuru 4 years ago
Maikuru
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Reasons for voting decision: With both sides disagreeing on what constitutes a "good" debate, Con was burdened with showing why Pro's arguments alone and his debates in general were "bad". Con didn't attempt the former, losing the debate right there. As for the latter, Con ignored at least one of Pro's examples of a "good" debate and supported his arguments against the others on seemingly weak grounds (e.g. the contentiousness of obviously controversial subjects such as veganism). League admission requires clearer standards