Extemp Files Update

The Extemp Files were just updated, through today’s articles (end of November). They’re complete through June (just before Nationals), and from Sept. 12th through this afternoon. Articles in the gap will be added as time permits. I have tried to find all the China articles in the gap after Nationals for the CX people. The files now begin in January; 2015 articles are now in the backfiles.

The Extemp Backfiles folder is available, too. With some political issues, global and domestic, having existed for years, there are some gems to be found here.

I’ve also update the LD-Values and the Government folders, which contain a multitude of topics, some going back years. The latter has the Elections and Supreme Court folders; the former has the Racism-Discrimination and Drugs folders for the LD topic (limit qualified immunity).

Note that the most recent Elections folder now has two files for November. 1116a covers the first part of the month, up until Election Day. Of more use to the new Extemp questions you’re likely to encounter is 1116b – the post-election articles that explore how Clinton lost (and where the Democrats go from here), how Trump won, and where Trump might be going (appointments and policies). The 1116b folder is up to over 1700 articles.

Extemp Files instructions repost: The link takes you to a Dropbox folder; if a pop-over window saying something about setting up an account or logging in comes up, just close it.

The files are serious overkill – a bit over 23,000 articles right now. There should be a way to copy or download individual articles when you find the ones you want in your files – try right-clicking the specific PDF file/article and selecting the ‘save link as’ option.

The four-digit numbers at the beginning of most of the file names (and the names of the sub-folders) are simply mm/yy codes so that you can tell how recent the article is at a glance.

Please don’t download the whole thing; it trips up my Dropbox limits and bad things happen that shut down access for others. If you need a full copy, let me know (see the About link for an email address) and I’ll make arrangements to get you a copy or share the folder (so that you get the updates as soon as I post them). Students who want to share the folder will need to have an OK from their coach – I don’t want to step on the toes of any coaches who prefer other methods of team research. (Several coaches already share the folder, if you’re a coach and are interested.) Specific topic subfolders can be shared as well.

Poetry

From NPR’s Here & Now program:

Through Poetry And TED Talks, Clint Smith Probes Racism In America

I admittedly haven’t judged much poetry recently, and don’t recall having heard anything by this author, but the poems and excerpts in the story are quite good and might be worth considering for a Poetry interp piece.

There are also links at the end of the page leading to other poetry stories (which I haven’t had a chance to listen to yet).

CX (and FX) – China

Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its economic and/or diplomatic engagement with the People’s Republic of China.

The question of what happens between China and the U.S. during a Trump administration is guaranteed to be a topic you’ll encounter in FX, and is likely to be the source of various advantages and disadvantages in CX. The following NPR report is worth listening to:

Trump’s Hotels In China Could Be A Conflict For The President-Elect

I hadn’t heard the figures before – plans for 20 to 30 new Trump properties spread around China. Does he come down hard on China and lose those developments, or does he curry favor with them to get his projects approved?

The last time we did a China topic in CX (mid-1990s) we learned that the government owns a *lot* of businesses. The PLA (People’s Liberation Army – the Chinese military) at the time had a good percentage of the members of the military involved in running their business interests. That raises the question of Trump’s business dealings not just with private businesses, as he would be in other countries, but with entities that are business extensions of the Chinese government. The NPR story touches on these concerns.

PF Dec ’16 Plan Colombia/Drug Policy

Resolved: The United States should end Plan Colombia.

Check the Extemp Files for the Colombia folder. Since the last update, the government signed off on a new peace plan with FARC, with no plans to submit it to a popular vote this time. With FARC sidelined, hopefully permanently, how will that impact Colombia’s drug production? And with the biggest drug problem in America being opiates (a large percentage of which are prescription), is Colombia producing drugs that still have a significant impact on drug abuse here?

Don’t forget that older articles on Colombia may be found in the Extemp Backfiles. The LD-Values folder has a Drugs subfolder that may be of use in documenting our domestic drug problem.

Want a statement that Plan Colombia has been a good thing? Check out the 6th paragraph:

Rethink the War on Drugs, President Santos Says

He goes on to say that multiple approaches need to be considered in the War on Drugs in Latin America. The question I don’t know the answer to is what Plan Colombia looked like when it was begun, and how it has morphed in the years since. Would Santos’ call for other approaches simply constitute a continuing morphing of Plan Colombia, or a rejection of it in favor of something new? And if something new is proposed, what does that say about the War on Drubs in general? Does that indicate that t is worth continuing?

 

Extemp Files Update

The Extemp Files were updated this afternoon, through This morning’s articles. They’re complete through June (just before Nationals), and from Sept. 12th through this afternoon. Articles in the gap will be added as time permits. I have tried to find all the China articles in the gap after Nationals for the CX people. The files now begin in January; 2015 articles are now in the backfiles.

The Extemp Backfiles folder is available, too. With some political issues, global and domestic, having existed for years, there are some gems to be found here.

I’ve also update the LD-Values and the Government folders, which contain a multitude of topics, some going back years. The latter has the Elections and Supreme Court folders; the former has the Racism-Discrimination and Drugs folders for the LD topic (limit qualified immunity).

Note that the most recent Elections folder now has two files for November. 1116a covers the first part of the month, up until Election Day. Of more use to the new Extemp questions you’re likely to encounter is 1116b – the post-election articles that explore how Clinton lost (and where the Democrats go from here), how Trump won, and where Trump might be going (appointments and policies). The 1116b folder is up to over 1400 articles so far, with five days to go.

Extemp Files instructions repost: The link takes you to a Dropbox folder; if a pop-over window saying something about setting up an account or logging in comes up, just close it.

The files are serious overkill – a bit over 22,000 articles right now. There should be a way to copy or download individual articles when you find the ones you want in your files – try right-clicking the specific PDF file/article and selecting the ‘save link as’ option.

The four-digit numbers at the beginning of most of the file names (and the names of the sub-folders) are simply mm/yy codes so that you can tell how recent the article is at a glance.

Please don’t download the whole thing; it trips up my Dropbox limits and bad things happen that shut down access for others. If you need a full copy, let me know (see the About link for an email address) and I’ll make arrangements to get you a copy or share the folder (so that you get the updates as soon as I post them). Students who want to share the folder will need to have an OK from their coach – I don’t want to step on the toes of any coaches who prefer other methods of team research. (Several coaches already share the folder, if you’re a coach and are interested.) Specific topic subfolders can be shared as well.

LD Nov/Dec ’16 -Limit Qualified Immunity

Resolved: The United States ought to limit qualified immunity for police officers.

I accidentally stumbled across the following story, which turns out to be very enlightening on this topic. It’s a radio interview (via Boston’s WBUR) with Terrence Cunningham. Besides being a police chief, he just ended a term as president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He’s unexpectedly candid for a person in his position.

Police, Bias And Communities Of Color

What to listen for:

At about the 10:00 mark, the statistic comes out that there are 11-12 million arrests each year. As an argument for QI, Cunningham points out that an officer has to bat 1.000 in those interactions – and that there’s a lot that can go wrong.

At about the 12:40 mark, the question of race as a predictor for police shootings is mentioned – a major point against QI.

Starting around the 17:00 mark is a discussion of police standards of behavior, as determined by the Supreme Court, and when specific behavior should get QI (though he doesn’t use the specific term) or be prosecuted.

Do listen to the whole interview – around 29 minutes – if at all possible.

Race and socioeconomic (SES) status are often linked in America. To that extent, a program that may have originally been based around SES may have morphed into something that increased police-minority interactions – the Broken Windows philosophy. For a history of that program, and its connection to police misconduct, this story via NPR:

How ‘Broken Windows’ Helped Shape Tensions Between Police And Communities

Good news, comparatively – it’s only 7 minutes long.

Other links: FBI 2012

FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin – Qualified Immunity

This isn’t a new issue; also from the FBI, late 1970s:

Qualified Immunity of Law Enforcement Officers

An actual legal case and decision on a QI issue; note the cases cited in it for further research:

Raub v Campbell

QI from a prosecutor’s standpoint:

Qualified Immunity: Striking the Balance for Prosecutor Accountability

Final thought: I judged four LD rounds on this topic last week. I was struck by the thought that, in terms of privilege, some people have even more privilege than police. For our LD purposes, it’s judges and their complete immunity (compared to police officers). What ends up happening, in practical terms, is that while the Neg is correct that cases involving police abuse can go to trial, that trial will be before someone with even more immunity than the police officers have, and that police officers defending themselves often have extensive (and often governmental) resources defending their actions. With all due respect to the rights of victims of police misconduct to bring legal action, what chance do they really have against officers with limited immunity (and considerable legal support) arguing that privilege before judges with complete immunity?