Writing and Responding to Disadvantages
A DISADVANTAGE: Claims that if we adopt the plan, bad things will happen as a result.
STRUCTURE: When presented: Name, thesis, A, B, C. Link early, impact later. When answering: 1-2-3-4 consecutive numbers.
HOW TO WIN WITH DISADVANTAGES:
- The disadvantage must outweigh the affirmative’s case. Otherwise, must defeat case 100%.
- Choose which ones to go for. Choose or lose.
- After choosing, be complete. If you leave any holes you must assume a good Affirmative team will find it.
- Actively compare disad to what is left of case in the second negative rebuttal.
- Remember if you use 2 disads you the first one will be canceled out and avoid turning both the link & the brink or you will be in trouble against knowledgable team.
TWO KINDS OF DISADS:
- Threshold/Brink: it all happens at once. We are close to event X, but the plan does Y which pushes us over the brink. The next time we do Y we will get X. -Harder to build link/brink story, but big impact.
- Linear: Every additional X leads to additional harm Y. Y is happening now, Aff increases it. -Easier to link and defend, but smaller impact.
ANSWERING A DISADVANTAGE:
- NO LINK: Plan doesn't do X, X doesn't cause Y, intervening factors stop it, links only a little bit.
- NO IMPACT: Scenario will not happen, impact will be very small or not happen at all.
- NOT UNIQUE: It will happen anyway, if it can happen it would have happened already. Don’t use this against Linear disads.
- NO BRINK/THRESHOLD: Plan will not do enough of X to trigger Y, not appropriate to linear disads.
- NO INTERNAL LINK: Necessary vital link in the logical chain is missing or untrue.
- NOT INTRINSIC: Status quo will act to prevent the disad, must show it will act and that such action would be effective.
- TURN THE LINK: Passage of the plan makes the disad less likely, Aff solves the thing which creates the disad.
- AFF OUTWEIGHS: Aff impact is bigger than disad impact, so even if the Neg wins the disad they lose the debate.
- TURN THE IMPACT: It is not actually bad, it is good. So, voting Aff gives you more of a good thing, not more of a bad thing.
- RELATIONSHIP TO THE COUNTERPLAN: Applies to counter plan as much as to our case, or, disad assumes Aff vs. Status quo while it really is Aff vs. counter plan.
- TOPICALITY TAKE OUT: The part of the plan which causes the disad is non- topical. That part of plan is gone, so is the disad, Aff wins on what is left.
- SOLVENCY TAKE OUT: The plan needs to gain advantage X in order to cause the disad; plan does not, so disad goes away.