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March 20, 2013 / compassioninpolitics

Introducing the concept of minimally sufficient underlining

Ok. This isn’t a “new” concept. The criteria I will apply might be “new(isn)” or at least as a formalized set of criteria is a new concept of sorts.

Lets think about what we want to accomplish with evidence & argument in debate and this will help us unpack this notion a bit further…

1) give reason
2) give impact/implication
3) provide contrast/distinction/framing
4) pre-emption
5) prioritization/qualification (ours is comparatively better, the highest, the most valuable, the most credible or the best reference point or type of data)
6) allow you to subsume or make their impacts inevitable. allow you to access their impacts.

[unpack each of the above]

Three others:
1) Clarity, context, & story (frame or be framed). Audience understanding is a limiter on your ability to communicate an argument. You want to focus on the most relevant to your credibility
2) Persuasive or memorable rhetoric
3) Toulmin’s notion of providing a limiter, so that your argument is more sound.
4) Emotional impact. (tie breaker of sorts or if you’ve done everything already)

Still others:
1) High Probability (high risk & quick timeframe/now key time)
2) Owning inevitability
3) Each and every. (this is not a hard pressed rule….but it comes in handy). Or for each X unit of time Y impact happens. Or for each $1 invested we get X, Y, and Z or we save $10 later.
4) Comprehensiveness/Re-telling simplicity.

Well….how can we tell.

1) Diversity versus focus. Breadth versus depth.
2) Going all in. 7 ways to access a particular impact.
3) Remember you have a 2ac. How the 1ac sets up the 2ac.
4) Core versus perifery. Big stick versus squirrel.
5) Interactivity & credibility & sustainability.
Our impacts versus their impacts.
Our most credible impacts versus their most credible impacts.
What we can win on the aft, if they win their counter plan.

A digression on bigger evidence. (the reasons for)
A digression on performative affirmatives.


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