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 Michael's 2nd affirmative

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MichaelC

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PostSubject: Michael's 2nd affirmative   Wed Jan 05, 2011 11:23 am

Intro: “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people; it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government - lest it come to dominate our lives and interests”. This quote from Patrick Henry is a good example of a democracy in a government; it says that the people restrain the government not the government restraining the people. However, a government must maintain some level of discipline over its people otherwise; the country will slowly spiral into chaos.
Definitions
Government: A government is the organization, machinery, or agency, through which a political unit exercises its authority, controls and administers public policy, and directs and controls the actions of its members or subjects.
Popular sovereignty: The doctrine that sovereign power is vested in the people and that those chosen to govern, as trustees of such power, must exercise it in conformity with the general will.
Discipline: Behavior in accord with rules of conducts; behavior and ordermaintained by training and control.
Definitions from Dictionary.com
Value: Popular Sovereignty
Contention 1: There are two methods for a government to be legitimate and one way, which a government can be legitimate, it must have control of its people. An example of this is the French revolution, which went from 1789-1799. Due to its government’s insensitivity to their starving, the French people overthrew their government, which resulted in a very unstable government. For the next seven years, France experienced turmoil and hardships until they could reestablish a government of their satisfaction and one that could maintain some level of control over the people. If the government had had popular sovereignty and control of their people to begin with, the French Revolution probably would never have happened. Another example of this is in France right now. The government raised the retirement age from 60 to 62 and the country revolted by starting riots, they burned cars, broke windows and created mayhem in the streets. This began in the summer of 2010 and the French government still does not have control of over this situation.
Contention 2: The second method is that a government rules by popular sovereignty. This is generally how a democracy works. Democracy is a political form of government in which governing power is derived from the people, either by direct (direct democracy) or by means of elected representatives of the people (representative democracy). The term is Greek and means "rule of the people". If the people are elected into office, they are expected to fulfill the needs of the people who voted him/her into office. If they do not then they are not ruling by popular sovereignty and often the people will begin to rebel through protests and riots, much like we see happening in France. If the government refuses to listen, they will often lose control of their power either by being overthrown as was the case of the French Revolution or by being voted out of office, as was the case of what we recently saw happen in our elections here in the United States, which resulted in a shift of legitimate governmental power.
Conclusion: To conclude on how a government is legitimate, the two methods I used were popular sovereignty and control. To have control of the people of your country you must have popular sovereignty and control comes along.


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mrs. gray
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PostSubject: A few comments   Tue Jan 11, 2011 2:08 pm

Michael, Thanks for posting. Here are a few suggestions.

Quote :
The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people; it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government - lest it come to dominate our lives and interests”. This quote from Patrick Henry is a good example of a democracy in a government; it says that the people restrain the government not the government restraining the people. However, a government must maintain some level of discipline over its people otherwise; the country will slowly spiral into chaos.

Consider saying who said the quote before you said it... this makes your listener sit forward out of respect for Patrick Henry:

ie..Patrick Henry once said: "The Constitution....."

Then you can say... This quote provides a strong foundation for the key points that I'll be making in this debate round today, As I'll be arguing my thesis: A Government isn't legitimate unless the governed people respect and acknowledge the Government. Because of this I stand resolved:A government's legitimacy is determined more by its respect for popular sovereignty than individual rights.

Quote :
Definitions

You say definitions and this is fine if you are presenting from an outline... however if you are just planning to say "definitions" as you read the speech I would encourage you to add additional judge education (this will help your speech get closer to the 6 minute mark too)
ie: As the affirmative speaker I have the privilege of defining the key words in this resolution. I offer the following definitions to ensure that we clearly understand the wording for this debate:

Quote :
Discipline: Behavior in accord with rules of conducts; behavior and ordermaintained by training and control.

You offer a definition for Discipline but this word is not found in the resolution. I think this is a carry over from your previous Affirmative Value.

Make sure that you give some words that lead up to the statement of your value:
The value that I will be upholding today will be Popular Sovereignty. This value is the key value that must be upheld in this debate because it is the heart of this resolution. All decisions must revolve around this value and how it applies to this resolution.

Quote :

There are two methods for a government to be legitimate and one way, which a government can be legitimate, it must have control of its people.

This is a good point to make answering the question of how we decide if a Government is legitimate, however your wording isn't clear.
Clarify:
Governmental Legitimacy rests on two important factors: 1 Does the Government serve it's intended purpose? 2. Do the people acknowledge and respect the Government?
Using these two questions we can now evaluate this resolution through the lens of my value: Popular Sovereignty.
My first contention: If the government doesn't do the work it was designed to do then it isn't legitimate.
My definition of Government says: that a government must exercise authority, control and administers public policy, and directs and controls the actions of its members or subjects. A historical example that illustrates what happens when a Government fails the test of legitimacy is found in the French Revolution...(briefly detail what you said about the french revolution) The revolution clearly showed that this government didn't have control or the ability to administer public policy. The government wasn't serving it's intended purpose.
therefore it failed the test of legitimacy.
Now lets consider my second contention:
Quote :
The second method is that a government rules by popular sovereignty.

Lets consider rewording this contention a bit to ensure that it relates directly to your support, and to make it easier for your judge to understand...

ie: The People determine if a Government is legitimate. This is the basis of democracy... (then you say what you said about Democracy)
You could also add your support of France and the retirement age issue... The people revolt when they don't respect the governments decisions..
In conclusion we can see that this resolution is best viewed through the lens of my Value, Popular Sovereignty... My value does a better job of determining if a government is legitimate because it addresses the two key questions that must be asked to determine if a Government passes the test of legitimacy.
1. Does it serve it's intended purpose/ 2. Do the people respect the Government?
Viewing this definition through the lens of Individual rights (or you could substitute your opponent's value here if it applies) doesn't answer these two questions therefore you must affirm the resolution.

If you have questions in regard to these comments it would be much easier for me to explain this verbally.



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