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Arrow TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

TDL II: SECOND WAVE



Double L vs Freeloader vs FeedMeANewGimmick vs Cloverleaf
Are age restrictions for films redundant in modern day society?


*FeedMeANewGimmick no shows*

Spoiler for Debates:
Double L
Although society today is very different than it was when the ratings system was created, there is nothing wrong with equipping parents with the tools they need to know what their children are watching on film. Some will say that these children will experience the same controversial experiences in the real world as they will experience visually on film. The problem with this logic is that it collapses the concept of parents being able to influence the personality of these children so that these children will be able to handle themselves well in this real world when they are old enough to experience life’s true difficulties. If movies are simply a reflection of reality, I ask you, is it best to expose a five year old to the witnessing of a murder while their brain is still developing? Or can we simply achieve the goal of developing their brain, by controlling what they are exposed to and waiting until their brain is mature enough to witness a murder on screen? As children grow, their brains go through various stages of development. The G Rated crowd might get scared of anything not bright, happy and cartoony. The PG age group might not understand curse words or sexuality. The PG-13 crowd is just discovering sexuality and morals and it would be best that their understanding of sexuality and morals not be perverted. The R-Rated crowd is most likely you and me. However, whether or not the children should be exposed to this, should be at the discretion of the parent.
My argument is not that there are some movies kids shouldn’t watch. My argument is that each child is different and will react in different ways to what they see on screen, therefore, just as much, each parent is different and knows what their children should and shouldn’t be exposed to. The issue here is not “What should kids watch” the issue is “What system should be in place for the parents to make individual decisions deciding what their kids should watch.” This isn’t about us determining what the kids see; it is about the parents determining what the kids should see. Despite what the real world is like, there is nothing wrong with equipping parents with the tools they need to raise their children, teach them good decisions and train their children’s psyche so they will be prepared for life in the real world, which, after all, is quite different than what we see in the movies.

Freeloader
In the 1960's, there was a great deal of change in the United States. The "Golden Age" of America had just ended. Gone were the 1950's that saw the United States grow economically and ascend to the top of the world as the supreme superpower. What began as a great decade, ended with civil rights protests and the beginnings of what would end up being the Vietnam War. During the first half of the century, there were children, adults and "little adults" which was the label for the 13-19 age bracket before those people in school were done growing. The Rock N Roll revolution of the 1950's brought a surge in these "teenagers" who began to behave differently. As result, the 1960's were a cumulative collection of years that saw culture change dramatically in America. Many have argued, that this change was for the worst. People tend to be supportive of the technology and cultural values that are in place at the time when they are growing up, but there is no denying that crime as a whole increased per capita after the 1960.
To answer the question if we should restrict people based on age from seeing certain movies, one must ponder the thought what is the difference between a child and an adult seeing said content. Naturally, you would assume that an adult is the more capable of making coherent decisions, and this is true more often than not. To hear someone suggest that there are children who are more than capable of handling "extreme" content is a perfectly valid and correct statement. Yet the fact that this is not an overlaying point of view also needs consideration. Can a 10 year old handle a graphic movie with a serial killer doing traumatic things? The answer is absolutely. Can all 10-year-olds handle that type of visual imagery on their eyes and minds? No, they quite simply cannot.
In a world society largely dominated by "majority rules" then once can see that allowing any and all children to see graphic and possibly traumatic content is not something that we should wholly embrace as a society. Humans have for several millennia now have had checks in place to protect children and I see little reason for some of those checks to exist now in the year 2013. In an age with more forms of entertainment available to children, we should still maintain some guidelines for what is acceptable and not acceptable. There are parents who know their children and who will allow them to see said movies at their home, and that is obviously their choice. But to remove these restrictions entirely would allow parents who simply lack basic parenting skills and keen judgement to be duped into thinking a movie such as "Saw" or "Hostel" are fair game for a preteen to watch. I could not disagree more, and I firmly believe that such changes to any society are counter productive to the belief that children are to be nurtured and protected until they are of age to stand on their own. While many people may disagree on what age that is specifically, to remove restrictions on films entirely would be unwise for the most part.

Cloverleaf
Are age restrictions for films redundant in modern day society?

No, age restrictions for films are not redundant in modern day society.

This is because I believe that we still have a moral obligation to our children and the children of our future to not expose them to harmful material and content, within a film, that would be deemed too mature for their age.

From personal experience, when I was growing up in the UK, my perception of films with a 15 or 18 rated certificates was one of intrigue. Just knowing that I wasn’t old enough to view it or that I shouldn’t watch it made me want to watch it even more. But I didn’t watch them. This was down to being respectful to my parents and also being slightly afraid of what I might see in these movies.

My parents decided to not allow me and my siblings to watch anything deemed too mature.

A study was carried out by researchers in America. The study involved more than 2,400 children between the ages of 10 to 14 years old and who’s parents allowed them to watch R-rated movies frequently, it showed a quarter of the children had tried alcohol behind their parents backs. This shows a correlation between underage viewing of films containing mature themes and underage drinking.

David Walsh, the founder of the non-profit National Institute on media and the family says: “The fact that they found an effect from the movies and they found an effect at that young age is doubly significant because a lot of research shows the younger kids use (alcohol), the greater the risk.”

James D. Sargent MD - paediatrician at Dartmouth Medical School says: “The message to parents is clear. Take the movie ratings literally. Under 17 should not be permitted to see R-Rated movies.”

This was after reports of kids having symptoms of recurring nightmares, lack of concentration and fear after seeing violent movies.

In the UK, The British board of film classification is the body responsible for examining and age rating films and videos prior to their release. They look at criteria such as discrimination, drugs, horror, dangerous and easily imitable behaviour, language, sex and violence.

I am going to look at the reasons the classifications are made in the first instance. The BBFC states that it is to protect children from unsuitable and even harmful content in films. They also make a point to state that it is important that the classification standards are in line with what the public expects and that its decisions take account of what the public finds acceptable at each age category.

Their tagline is “Age ratings you can trust”.

Films that contain lots of swearing can have a negative impact on society. Using swear words can give off hostility and can cause retaliation or other anti social actions. Many members of society find such words and actions very offensive. Kids viewing mature content is against what Society wants and expects. I believe that this is still the case today.

Glorification of sex and violence is harmful to society. Fact.

Let’s look at the general effect televised violence has on the youth of today. Over the past 30 years there has been extensive research on the relationship between televised violence and violent behaviour among youth. Longitudinal, cross-sectional, and experimental studies have all confirmed this correlation.

The typical American child will view more than 200,000 acts of violence, including more than 16,000 murders before age 18. Television programs display 812 violent acts per hour; children's programming, particularly cartoons, displays up to 20 violent acts hourly.

To me this seems VERY excessive but still not a reason why Age restrictions for films would be redundant in todays society.

Just because children have access to watch age rated films at home doesn’t mean that it is right and that they should do so. This comes down to the responsibility of the adult or guardian and the restrictions put in place in the home, whether it’s hiding age restricted movies or restricting online access. The fact that personal experiences drive emotions and reinforce decisions, viewing violent content at a young age can be harmful.

How much notice do people actually take of them? Cinema and theatres will refuse entry to underage patrons and shops won’t sell films and TV shows that aren’t suitable for the customer without the appropriate identification.

They should be taken seriously, especially in influential environments such as schools and colleges (or at the very least parental consent should be given for viewing of certain content).

My conclusion is that; in no way are age restrictions for films redundant in modern day society. If anything we have a further moral obligation to educate them and restrict our young people of today in what content they view in films.

-http://www.bbfc.co.uk/about-bbfc The British Board of Film Classification is an independent, non-governmental body which has classified cinema films since it was set up in 1912 and videos/ DVDs since the Video Recordings Act was passed in 1984.
-http://www.demon-media.co.uk/c-word/...thing-anymore/ Counter argument.
-Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/story/2010/04...#ixzz2WJ1dkG3n


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Clique
Double L brought plenty of attention to the importance of film ratings and why parents have the right to facilitate the content presented to their child. Your point about parents making the decision opposed to what is socially acceptable content was a focus that you made an unyielding case for from start to finish.

Freeloader did a fantastic job bringing up the history on how pop culture and society has evolved over the years. At the core of your argument was very solid making the connection between the change in society and the change in how we view our youth. You had great points about exposure to violence and social issues affecting youth today which makes your historical reference relevant.

Cloverleaf presented some compelling statistics as a reference. When you do this you put real life perspective to your argument. I am impressed you took a strong stance and you backed up your argument with the researched social implications as evidence. Without the evidence I do not feel your bold statements would have held up as well. That was the clincher for me in this debate as well as how good you structured the debated as a whole.

Winner – Cloverleaf

i$e
This topic was always more of a test. I think the answer is pretty obvious so it was interesting to see who slid past it and who actually stepped up to say why it was obvious.

Only Cloverleaf really did that, as the moral obligation seems to be the heart of everything here. It was the only debate with proper facts whilst still retaining a convincing narrative. Nothing wrong with either Double L or Freeloader -- they're both spot on and well written debates, but yeah Cloverleaf clearly went the extra mile here.

Vote - Cloverleaf

Rush
All 3 debates were fairly similar in the sense that they all pointed out that the obligation for educating children and the content allowed for them should be regulated by parents and the ratings system is a good indicator for these parents. There was 1 debate in particular that expanded further than that point which is why it got the win. All of these debates were good, solid debates but Double L and Freeloader needed a bit more depth to their argument to separate them from the others which is why I’m giving the win to Cloverleaf. He went further than the main point of parents guiding what children watch and provided some evidence for why film ratings are a good idea, tied in with some personal experience.

Result

Winner is Cloverleaf


Winner via Unanimous Decision - Cloverleaf


Brye vs Aid180 vs Cobruh vs Snoth
Of the young QB's breaking through in the NFL, which one will have the most successful career?


*Snoth no shows*

Spoiler for Debates:
Brye
The NFL has had a plethora of great talent at the quarterback position in the last few years. Of all of those people, Russell will have the best career of all of them. Before I explain why Wilson will have a huge legacy, let’s look into the other quarterbacks that will be competing with him.

In Wilson’s draft class we also had RG III and Andrew Luck. RG III is probably the most talked about young QB in the league but his play style, combined with two big ACL injuries are going to limit what he can do. The torn ACL is an injury that many never truly recover from and RG III will most certainly lose a step or two. And playing in the same division as DeMarcus Ware and Jason Pierre-Paul certainly won’t help him. While Griffin has undeniable talent, he is already injury prone and being a scrambling quarterback does no favors to him. Andrew Luck was the first overall pick in the 2012 draft and he showed certain promise for the Colts. Luck’s biggest problems come from a lack of strong decision making. We saw it at times during his Stanford run and it also showed itself during many of his key games in 2012. 18 interceptions in a 16 game season is a little too high if you’re only going to put up 23 TDs. Luck seems to have good rapport with Reggie Wayne, but Wayne can only have a few years left in him, at most. Luck ranked 26th in QB rating last season, while Griffin and Wilson were in 3rd and 4th respectively. Combine this with a mediocre completion % of 54 that put him in 31st in the league and we can see that Luck still has lots to work on.

Two wild cards from the previous year’s draft class are Cam Newton and Colin Kaepernick. The sample size for Kaepernick is a bit small at the moment but he certainly made himself known, making the Super Bowl. But this summer, teams will have far more time to study and prepare for him than what they had in the regular season. Crabtree, being the #1 receiver is potentially a problem considering his proneness to injuries and his recent torn achilles. They may have Anquan Boldin, but he’s nearing the end of his storied career and won’t be there forever. Kaepernick also didn’t seem to be on the same wavelength as Vernon Davis, whose numbers dropped significantly when Alex Smith went down. My expectation for Kaepernick is that teams will be prepared for the run and he won’t be able to make up for it in the passing game as well. Cam Newton is next and his problems lie within his character. Despite picking up his game near the end of last season, Cam is under scrutiny due to blaming others for his problems, as seen in this post game interviews. Cam also hasn’t shown to be very clutch late in games which is important for the team’s success as a whole, just ask Eli Manning. Newton has the skills needed to be great, but Steve Smith is in his last few years and the rest of the Panthers’ receivers have been stagnant in development. LaFell, Edwards and Gettis didn’t seem to make any difference last year.

Now onto Russell Wilson. The man that everyone overlooked In the draft and the man that made it the furthest in the playoffs last season, of all the rookies. Wilson is only 5’11, which may seem very short, but he makes up for it with immense skill and judgment. Wilson’s skills may be great, but he has a team of incredible talent around him with the best defensive backs in the league, a top five running back and a great lineup of receivers. Bringing in Percy Harvin is great for long term development. Rice and Harvin can both go deep but both have great hands and Golden Tate managed to come around last season. Wilson also managed to tear apart the rival 49ers 42-13 in a game where he had 4 touchdowns. As a whole, Wilson finished 2012 with 30 touchdowns and 13 turnovers which is a great ratio, especially for a rookie. Just by watching Wilson, he looks so cool under pressure, unlike many players at such a young age. One of the most important factors into success is that your teammates help determine your success. With a very strong team around him, Russell Wilson will continue to dominate the NFC and take the Seahawks to a Super Bowl in the near future.


Sources:
http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/gamelo...lin-kaepernick
http://espn.go.com/nfl/statistics/pl...rterbackRating
http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/gamelo...russell-wilson
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...y-is-at-7-a-m/

Cobruh
The quarterback looking the best with an up and coming career is Colin Kaepernick. Although most would go with Robert Griffin III or Andrew Luck, let's face the facts. Colin Kaepernick's tenth career start in the NFL was the super bowl, not many people can say that.

Although the 49ers lost the super bowl, the road to get there was pretty tough and he managed to get his team through it. Last season he would get his first touchdown in the NFL and lead the team to their first super bowl since 1994. He'd later go on to replace the injured Alex Smith and prove that he was even better, taking over the starting position. In his next start he would go on to complete 16 of 23 passes for 246 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions in a 32–7 win over the Chicago Bears, which in fact was highly ranked in defense. Smith would be cleared for the next game, but Kaepernick was chosen to start instead. You've got to be pretty good to replace a man who was ranked 3rd in the league in passer rating at 104.1, led the league in completion percentage at 70%, and had been 19–5–1 as a starter under Jim Harbaugh's coaching.

Later on in his first postseason start Kaepernick would defeat the Green Bay Packers, a team which took first in the NFC North, in a 45-31 victory. He also broke two records, the NFL single-game record for most rushing yards by a quarterback with 181, and the 49ers franchise postseason rushing record, regardless of position. Kaepernick carried the ball 16 times gaining 181 yards and would scramble five times for 75 yards, including touchdowns of 20 and 56 yards, and got another 99 yards rushing on zone-read option plays. He’d also pass for 263 yards and two touchdowns making a total of 444 yards of total offense and 4 touchdowns. Kaepernick became the third player including Jay Cutler and Otto Graham to run for two TD’s and pass for two more in a playoff game. He would then lead the 49ers to defeat the Atlanta Falcons, who went 13-3 in the regular season tying the Broncos for the best regular season record. Kaepernick would complete 16 out of 21 passes for 233 yards and 1 touchdown.

Besides his clear success on the football field, Colin Kaepernick has shown that he is a pure athlete having success in baseball as well. He was listed as a draft-ready prospect to the MLB in 2006 and was a two-time all-state baseball player in California as a pitcher, showing that he has tremendous arm strength and accuracy. He was drafted to the Chicago Cubs of Major League Baseball in 2009 but decided he would rather continue to play football at Nevada, choosing not to sign with the cubs.

Colin Kaepernick is a quick, young, dominant, aggressive quarterback who is looking dangerous in basically his first year as a quarterback in the NFL since he was a back up in 2011. Kaepernick lead his team to the super bowl with not even half a season of regular season experience in the NFL. He chose football over baseball which proves his dedication to the game despite being drafted first to another professional sports league. He has shown that he is the top quarterback in the NFL by defeating teams quarterbacked by some of the greatest including playoff victories over Aaron Rogers with the Packers, and Matt Ryan with the Falcons. Kaepernick has a bright future ahead and will without a doubt be starting in 2013 for the San Francisco 49ers.

Aid180
Who do you think of when you think about successful NFL QBs? Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Brett Favre, Joe Montana, Terry Bradshaw, John Elway, etc. What do these men all have in common? They all had long careers. Each of these men had an NFL career longer than ten years. Breaking records and winning titles require passing attempts. The more games you play the more passing attempts you get and the more chances you get to break records and win titles. That is why career longevity is important. Obviously skill is a requirement for success, but when talking about the best of the best, skill is a given. When comparing the new faces of the NFL quarterback ranks, it’s obvious that they have skill. So when figuring out who will likely have the best career of Griffin, Kaepernick, Wilson, and Luck, career longevity and WPA are the best basis of prediction. That's why Andrew Luck will have the most successful career.

Vince Lombardi once said, “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” Playing in the NFL, players will get knocked down; it just depends on how hard they are taken down. Scott Kacsmar put together a chart showing the percentages and how often the running QBs were tackled this past season and playoffs.



As you can see, Griffin and Wilson were tackled in over 55% of their rushing attempts, while Kaepernick was tackled on just over 35% of his attempts. So Robert Griffin III was hit 64 times in addition to the 32 sacks he took this season. Russell Wilson was hit 54 times and sacked 40 times. Colin Kaepernick, keep in mind that he played fewer games, was tackled 28 times and sacked an additional 21 times. Using the same ratio over 16 games instead of 10, Kaepernick would have likely been hit 44.8 times and sacked 33.6 times. So what does all this mean? This means these QBs are getting tackled 77-96 times a season, not counting knockdowns behind the line of scrimmage after the ball was thrown. Compared to the non-scrambling QB Andrew Luck, these QBs are getting tackled potentially 20-30 times more a year. Any one hit can potentially end a season or a career (see Tom Brady in 2008 or Johnny Knox in 2011). With an additional 20-30 times being tackled, that’s an increased probability that they could be hit with a career-shortening injury, like Robert Griffin III already sustained with his torn ACL his rookie season. Besides just the hypothetical data, we also have the physical results of their current NFL stats to compare how successful these Quarterbacks can be.

According to AdvancedNFLstats.com, Andrew Luck had the fourth highest win probability added among quarterbacks in 2012. Win probability added is, “The difference between a team’s Win Probability (WP) at the start of a play and the WP at the end of the play. WPA is the measure of a play’s impact on the outcome of a game. An individual player’s WPA is the sum of the WPA of the plays in which that player was directly involved.” Essentially, it’s how a player’s performance accounts for the likelihood of victory. The only quarterbacks higher than Luck are Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, and Aaron Rodgers. Wilson, Griffin, and Kaepernick came in at 8th, 12th, and 13th respectively. This means Andrew Luck was more important to his team than the other quarterbacks were to their teams. In addition to advanced stats, just the team records alone show that Luck added more. The Colts were 2-14 in 2011, the Redskins were 5-11, the Seahawks were 7-9, and the Niners were 13-3. In 2012, the teams were 11-5, 10-6, 11-5, and 11-4-1 respectively. The addition of Andrew Luck and the Colts changes resulted in an additional 9 wins, more than the other QBs added to their teams. Andrew Luck also had much less to work with. ESPN statistics has The Colts as the 26th defense in 2012 as opposed to 3rd and 4th for San Francisco and Seattle. The Colts were 22nd in rushing as opposed to Washington, Seattle, and San Francisco’s 1st, 3rd, and 4th ranked rushing attacks. Finally, Pro Football Focus ranked The Colts’ offensive line 31st compared to Seattle’s 20th, Washington’s 16th, and San Francisco’s 1st. Andrew Luck also led these four men in passing yards (including adjusting Kaepernick’s to 16 games). Simply put, Luck did more with less. Imagine how much better Luck could be with the resources the other teams had.

Success is very hard to determine with one year of data, but by prediction using first year stats and longevity likelihood, I believe Andrew Luck will be the most successful.

Sources:

https://www.profootballfocus.com/blo...nsive-lines/4/
http://espn.go.com/nfl/statistics/te...sition/defense
http://espn.go.com/nfl/statistics/team/_/stat/rushing
http://www.nfl.com/standings?categor...eason=2012-REG
http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1...hing-successes
http://wp.advancednflstats.com/playerstats.php?pos=QB


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Rush
This was a different kind of debate than most of the other sports debates as it is very open ended. Overall I think everyone did a great job, and it was pretty tough to judge. The fact that each of you picked a different guy made it more enjoyable to read through as well. Not only did you each pick a different guy but you all had unique points and style which makes it even harder to pick a winner.

Brye compared the stats of a few of the prospects and compared and contrasted them nicely. Not only did he pick some points as to why his choice was most likely to have a good career, but also talked about why the other options weren’t which is worked really well with this style of question.

Cobruh didn’t talk about the other prospects, and just concentrated on Kaepernick and the guy he replaced in the 49ers which was fine. Gave some background on his athletic prowess as well, with his past in baseball which was a nice touch. Overall the only knock is that you were a bit narrow focused. You listed the stats of a few games which is fine, but you could’ve talked about why that will lead to success in the future. Anyone can have a good stretch of games, but I feel you needed to list more qualities that would make for a successful career.

Aid180 took an interesting look at the question, and what makes a successful career. Very heavily influenced by statistics, but they were all pretty relevant. Trouble with only reading into stats is that this question is very much asking for a projected opinion. The stats for a year or 2 of games won’t be the best judge of that (which you mentioned) thus some subjective opinion rather than pure objective opinion is needed. You mentioned the other prospects and their teams, but didn’t address whether playing on a better team would result in more chances for a Superbowl ring, or better passing stats, more yards, TD’s etc. Doesn’t really count against you though seeing as none of the debates did that either.

Result

This was a really tough debate to judge. Had to go over them a few times before making up my mind but I’m going with Brye.

The Lady Killer
This debate was solid all around, but ended up being a 2-man race. Here's why:

Brye - Very convincing argument. You took a stance early, described in detail why Wilson's potential competition (aka rebuttals) weren't as good of a choice, and then drove home why Wilson was the best choice. This is basically the same structure I would've taken had I been assigned this topic. You incorporated a good amount of statistics to go with your personal knowledge of the sport to provide ample support for Wilson as your pick. Well done.

The only thing I'd suggest is to not abbreviate things like "RG III" and any other NFL-related things that a less knowledgeable judge (such as myself) may not know. Luckily, I know enough about football to keep up, but for future reference, it's best to spell everything out. Small gripe, though.

Cobruh - You make a convincing argument for Kaepernick, but fail to really address any of his counterparts as viable rebuttals. I think had you hand-picked a few of the other possible choices and shot them down, you probably would've won since your support for Kaepernick seemed the strongest relative to the picks for the two opposing debates. Seriously, reading over your debate again, you had some excellent support. Very strong. It's a shame that you couldn't also invalidate the other options (Wilson, Luck, Griffin III), because I think you would've ran away with it. Take this as a learning point. You clearly know what you're doing.

Aid180 - Like Brye, you made a pick (Andrew Luck), took a particular aspect of how all great QBs have longevity, and built your argument on why Luck will outlast the young competition by being less of a scrambling QB. This was good. Very good. You then went on to say how Luck added the most wins to his team as compared to the other young QBs despite having the least to work with. Again, great support for your stance. You make the necessary statement that 1 year is little to go off of, but extrapolation of facts is a great way to steady your claim. You did this effectively.

I think the one thing missing from each of the three debates was to define the term "success." Is success winning games? Is it winning the Super Bowl? Is it breaking records? What is success? I think this was key to tackling this topic, and none of the debates did this. If any of you had, you likely would've won outright, because ultimately, it's what the topic is asking. "Who will be the most successful?" Well, to answer this, you need to define what success is. Since none of you did this, you're basically playing on a level field, and in that case, I'm going to give Brye the nod because he discounted the other viable options most effectively. Aid180 was a close runner up, and Cobruh had the strongest support for his choice, but failed to do what Brye and Aid180 did in discounting the rebuttals.

Winner - Brye

Headliner
Cobruh wins because he picked a side, and stayed on that side the entire time. He provided good facts and evidence to back up his claim. Brye and Aid180 focused too much on other QB's instead of their own choice. I do give Aid180 a little credit for using other QB's to show how his choice was a better option.


Winner via Split Decision - Brye


Seabs: Brye! Can I get a quick word after that impressive victory? What's your reaction to being the victor?

Brye:

Seabs: It's good to see no signs of ring rust. I guess you're still the man.

Brye:

Seabs: While it was impressive I can't help but feel Snoth would've won if actually bothered showing up. Coincidence that you win and he's nowhere to be seen?

Brye: 1

Seabs: Well after that win I've got a scoop for you and everyone. On Show 4 you'll be facing Rush in a #1 contenders match. Thoughts?

Brye:

Seabs: I don't think you stand a chance in that one in my humble opinion.

Brye:

Seabs: Well hopefully you remember to zip your fly up for that debate

Brye:

Lawls vs King Kenny vs ashes11
Should more countries be granted Test Cricket status?


*King Kenny no shows*

Spoiler for Debates:
Lawls

Should more countries be granted Test Cricket status?

No, more countries should not be granted Test Cricket status and join in what is known as the ‘ICC Test Championship’, which currently ranks 10 teams with one however being unranked. This team is Zimbabwe and they are unranked due to having played an insufficient amount of matches. Countries that have ‘Test Status’ is determined by the International Cricket Council (ICC)

Continuing on from this point having a team who is currently unranked due to having played an insufficient amount of matches is one reason as to why more countries shouldn’t be granted Test Cricket status. Zimbabwe entered Test Cricket in 1992 and twice voluntarily suspended themselves from Test Cricket. Once from the 10th of June 2004 – 6th of January 2005. A second time was from the 6th of January 2006 – 3rd of August 2011. Both reasons were due to poor performance in Test Cricket against other nations. Introducing and exposing more countries to Test Cricket will just end up like this, with the country either having an interrupted run during the competition or just pulling out completely. Coming up against fully fledged and established Test Cricket nations would do more harm than good. You just have to look at Bangladesh who took 34 test matches to finally record their first win. Imagine how long it would take other countries starting up to record their first Test win against teams who have started playing since 1877! It would take time and money and it wouldn’t be in the best interest of the ICC to introduce and grant more countries ‘Test Status’ at this time. Bangladesh was the last to have been granted ‘Test Status’ in 2000 and since then have struggled immensely. When we have two teams, one struggling to win matches and the other twice having to voluntarily withdraw themselves from test cricket that alone shows enough as to why more countries shouldn’t be granted ‘Test Status’.

Currently Ireland is pushing for ‘Test Status’ and hope to achieve this by the year 2020. However the ICC is very reluctant with this idea after the elevation of Bangladesh back in 2000 which was ‘premature’. The ICC hasn’t offered a clear pathway for Ireland to achieve ‘Test Status’. If more countries were to be introduced a pathway between test level and club competition/state competition would have to be made, and that alone would take time and money. Even with Ireland pushing for ‘Test Status’ the ICC are very hesitant, so what would that say for other countries who rarely play any form of cricket (Canada, Kenya, USA etc)

No other countries should be granted ‘Test Status’, especially with two countries that already have ‘Test Status’ struggling to even be competitive in the sport, something which the ICC is probably right now regretting. After seeing this, the ICC will play it safe regarding to other nations applying for ‘Test Status’ making sure that they will be capable to hold their own and not after a year or two withdraw themselves from test matches due to it not working out for them. After a large period of time the ICC should review and see if other countries seem suitable to be upgraded to ‘Test Status’ but as of now they should leave it as it currently is. Why fix something that isn’t broken?

References:
http://www.icc-cricket.com/rankings/team-rankings/test
http://www.returntosports.com/get-a-lesson/cricket-101
http://cricketmaniass.blogspot.com.a...est-match.html
http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine...ry/638454.html


ashes11

Despite the continued push in limited overs cricket and the introduction and success of competitions such as the IPL, Big Bash and World T20, Test cricket, in my opinion remains the pinnacle for any aspiring cricketer, introducing more teams would certainly mean more exposure in lesser cricket playing nations to this form of the game, but with standards being set so high by playing nations, I could not justify including more.

With such strong focus on the shorter form of the game, I fear that new nations would get enough tests to make worthwhile. As recently as December, the Sri Lanka and West Indies boards mutually decided to shelve the two-Test series scheduled for this May and instead play a tri-series of ODI fixtures involving India (cricinfo), if these major nations aren’t interested in facing each other, why would they take a 3 test series against the likes of Ireland or Afghanistan?

Money plays to bigger part in the game for my liking nowadays, without even checking the rankings, Test match pitches are often made flat, to ensure 5 days cricket between two strong sides, 5 days of people paying to watch, could a weak, under exposed Ireland last those 5 days?

Furthermore, in consideration to the ICC World Cricket League Championship, there is little in terms of a stand out team, Ireland sit top, whilst just 4 points separate the following 5 teams until a couple of teams can absolutely run away with this league, nobody will be able to handle the likes of South Africa. Additionally of the last 2 years in said format, only 1 of the top 10 leading batsmen have secured a batting average of above 50. K.J Coetzer being the exception, with an average of 62 (1x100) (4x50). Until groups of players can truly dominate against this opposition I don’t believe they would be strong enough against the best players in the world.

Associate nations will continue to boast the occasional victory over Test playing nations, Irelands famous victories over Pakistan and England in the 2007 and 2011 50 over World Cups respectively, and the Netherlands defeating England in the 2009 world T20, I’m sure more victories alike will happen and every time, the question will be asked why can’t they play test cricket? However though in limited overs cricket, a single misfortune, poor
Bowling performance of fluke innings can cost a team a game, it isn’t the case over 5 gruelling days of test cricket, weaknesses are identified, and the stronger teams come out on top.

Associate nations right now, would be over exposed in Test Cricket, but many would argue, they need to play it to stand any chance of improving, I suggest the ICC put strong focus on increasing the amount of shorter cricket played between associate and Test playing nations, then, we might see teams like Ireland forming a serious challenge in a World Cup, then hopefully they could progress to Test Cricket, providing England don’t have any more of their hot prospects.
I did however though, have one idea for a possible introduction of teams to test cricket, which would be bringing about a 3 tier league system in which teams will play against those closest to each other in standards, and where relegation and promotion is applied. Begin with 3 leagues of 4, based on the current test rankings; Division 1) South Africa, England, India and Australia. Division 2) Pakistan, Sri Lanka, West Indies and New Zealand. And finally, Division 3, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe with the 2 highest ranked non test countries, Ireland and The Netherlands. With this initiative, new test countries would not face humiliation by some of the worlds best, and could acclimatise to the game by facing similar opposition. Run the divisions over a 2 year span initially, to ensure a new nation can build slowly out of the bottom tier, and be ready for the formidable players in division 2.

In summary, I think it would be a poor idea to allow more nations Test status, it would find them too exposed, add that to the risk of them not playing many games, it wouldn’t be worth it. The division system is a nice idea, but it involves such a radical shake up of the game, it would need considering for years, and for the current nations, why fix what isn’t broken?


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
Lawls’ debate would have been great with some more depth to make it stronger. The argument that you’re basing your stance on is really well explained and argued but I also wanted you to support your argument with a couple more points to really strengthen it rather than just focusing on the one point. You argued that one point really well mind. Introduction and conclusion are really good too. I loved “Why fix something that isn’t broken?” as your closing line. Was totally mindfucked when ashes11 closed out on that line too. Just needed a bit more beef to it to really stand out as a great debate.

ashes11 probably would have edged this tie if his debate wasn’t such a struggle to read through. Your sentences are way too long and you’re breaking them up with commas rather than full stops. It just makes the whole thing so hard to read through and really get into. Plus when you do make good points (and you do) they’re tainted by it being a struggle to read through the good points so you weaken the benefit that they have. Your first paragraph for example is just one long sentence. Like I said, you do make some good points and I particularly liked the suggestion of a league format. It’s certainly not a flawless suggestion and has some pretty clear faults to it but I like the creativity and outside the box thinking. Get the grammar sorted so that it’s not a challenge to read and you’ll have a good debate building off this.

Winner - Lawls

Rush
This is the question that I put in so I’m going to be extra critical Neither debate really hit on a few of the points I wished they had, although ashes11 came closest when discussing the tiers system which I liked. When arguing either way I wanted to see some solutions for how it could work, or definitive reasons why it wouldn’t which I didn’t think either of you nailed completely. Oh well, still a good debate nevertheless, onto some specifics from either debate.

Lawls:
You mentioned the 2 teams that are struggling in test cricket, and mentioned one of the teams pushing towards test status and gave some reasons for why each is struggling in the test arena.

Mentioned factors behind why it would be difficult to include another team ie time and money

Mentioned how many matches it took Bangladesh to record their first test win. However just on that point, I see you didn’t mention that Zimbabwe took less time to record their first win than South Africa (currently the #1 team), Sri Lanka and New Zealand (who took even longer than Bangladesh) . Not a point against you, just something I noticed.

ashes11

I really really liked the opening couple paragraphs. Essentially covered most of the points against test cricket in the current environment. Less test cricket is being played, and money from television in markets such as India are driving the game at the moment.

You mentioned a few victories from associate nations, there are lots of instances of this in the shorter forms, but you failed to mention any from test cricket ie Bangladesh’s test series win over the West Indies.

You attempted to include some points for the opposite argument (that associate nations need to play more to get better) but you didn’t really rebut it at all.

I liked the suggestion of the tier system

Result

Both these were solid debates but I’m going to give it to Lawls. just.

I only just realised that i$e didn't actually judge this debate. Doesn't really matter though because we already have a winner.


Winner via Unanimous Decision - Lawls


*Joel & redead are backstage setting up some form of a stand. In the know reporter Shepard approaches them.*

Shepard: What's going on here?

Joel: Shepard! You are here to witness the birth of Jodead betting, opening for business tonight!

Shepard: With a silent J?

redead: Yes

Shepard: Is that the best name you could come up with?

Joel: It's brilliant.

Shepard: eh

Joel: Something you wanna say? Or are you just a SCARED COWARD?

*Shepard walks away. I guess he really is he a SCARED COWARD*

redead: HEY SHEPARD! PUT A SOCK IN IT NEXT TIME!

redead: Are you sure this is moral?

Joel: Of course not. That's why we're doing it. We already know who's winning thanks to Tony's formlula so we're guaranteed to win.

Hank Scorpio vs Raging Eboue vs ADECW
Were Manchester City justified in sacking Roberto Mancini?


*ADECW no shows*

Spoiler for Debates:
Hank Scorpio

Were Manchester City justified in sacking Roberto Mancini?

Key words "Manchester City".

Manchester City are a different football club then most others and have been for a relatively short time. If this had happened before 2008 and you had asked me this question I would have instantly said that there could have been no way in which City would have been justified to sack a manager who had already achieved so much with the club.

But they are not the same as they once were.

In August of 2008 City were in danger of a complete and utter financial meltdown with their then owner Thaksin Shinawatra asking for loans in excess of £2,000,000 just to keep the club afloat.

Enter Sheik Mansor.

Mansour and his Abu Dhabi United Group purchased Shinawatra's stake in the club and set about the re-construction of Manchester City.
But with the Shiek and his financial salvation came a change in Manchester City. No longer were they just the other football club in Manchester. They became a major player in the premier league and backed it up with several season of good results to go along with several trophies. The most important being the premier league title in 2011-12. Manchester City has become a team that is based all around results.

And that brings us to why Roberto Mancini was let go. During the course of this past season he showed that he was unable to inspire and lead his team to the expectations that had been laid out before him. I doubt that he would have stayed even if they won the FA cup. He failed to get the results that the City owners wanted. Thus a failure to meet the lofty expectations would result in a termination of his contract with the club.

Manchester City are a team that's sole goal is to win the premier league. Mancini failed in doing so. Therefore Roberto was rightfully let go. Simple as that.


Raging Eboue

Were Manchester City justified in sacking Roberto Mancini?

I feel that the sacking of Roberto Mancini was completely unjustified and an overall stupid decision to make, Mancini led Manchester City to a great amount of success and would have continued to do so if given the chance.

Roberto Mancini led Manchester City to a 5th place finish in his first season in charge, this shows that City have slowly progressed under Mancini. In his time as manager he led them to the FA Cup, Community Shield and Premier League (Their first league victory in 44 years) and as each season passed City become more and more successful, you could argue that they came out of the 13/14 season they ended up empty handed but they also finished 2nd in the league and as runners up in the FA Cup which in itself is by no means a bad season. City may have had a blip this year by it is ridiculous to think that they will dominate every single season, no matter how much money their investors pump into the cub sometimes it just doesn't work out and I fully believe that this season with Mancini in charge City would have ended the season with silverware.

Roberto Mancini signed many players that are widely known as some of the best on the planet, players like Yaya Toure, David Silva & Sergio Aguero would fit into any of the top teams in the world. While Vincent Kompany was signed by Mark Hughes, Mancini molded him into one of the best defenders in the world by giving him the captains armband and giving him the responsibility that he now thrives on. Mancini had created his desired team last season and with the signing of Jack Rodwell and his reported interest with Isco showed that he was building for the future and had a clear view of the team he wanted.

At the end of last season Sir Alex Ferguson announced his retirement after 27 years as manager of rivals Manchester United, this changed the whole complexion of the title race as United now have David Moyes in charge who is relatively inexperienced in managing a title challenging side and some people even say he is out of his depth. Because of this many people think that the upcoming season could be a slow one for United as they adjust to their new managers style and that City could have took advantage of this and regained the Premier League, now that Roberto Mancini has been sacked City are in the same position as United and have lost the advantage of having a manager who they know well and are used to his style of management.

Manchester City where taken over by Abu Dhabi United Group in 2008 and became one of the richest clubs in the world, since then City have bought numerous high profile players for massive amounts of money. These players sometimes become a integral part of the team such as Yaya Toure or Vincent Kompany but many players fail to make an impact and are shipped out and instantly replaced, this has caused City to be unable maintain a regular core of the team and has meant that the team has no real stability. Under Mancini City had started to become more of a team than just 11 individual players and this reflected in the success that he brought them, Manuel Pellegrini has since become the new Manchester City manager and could very well destroy the team and try to put his own mark on the club by selling Mancini's stars and creating his own.
All in all I believe that Mancini would have bounced back from last season to make a serious challenge for the Premier League and could very well have won it, Pellegrini may well do just the same but I believe that by keeping Mancini in charge would have benefited the team as they will see that Manchester City now has a level of stability within the club.

Sources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roberto_Mancini


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
i$e
Hank Scorpio's is pretty basic, really. It doesn't do anything wrong, but it's hardly convincing and lacks passion.

Raging Eboue goes into much more detail, offers some examples and just generally has an argument considered from various different angles. More effort, and with it comes victory.

Vote - Raging Eboue

Rush
Hank Scorpio

Short but sweet. Stayed on point, it did answer the question but didn’t really go into much depth.

Some good background on the owner and history of the club.
City finished 2nd in the league, and runner up in the FA Cup. Neither were particularly bad results at all so you needed to expand on why that justifies his sacking.

Could’ve brought up team dynamics, his results in Europe, his and his executives recent failings in the transfer market etc

Raging Eboue

Good debate. Was on point, raised a number of ‘key’ points regarding his sacking ie results, team makeup, his successor and the state of their number 1 rival in regards to the league.

I liked the point regarding United and Moyes

Overall a very solid and well-rounded debate.

Result
Raging Eboue
gets the nod from me.

Seabs
Hank Scorpio - First off, a debate that’s barely over the minimum word count is unlikely to be a very strong debate unless it’s off such a high quality in its persuasiveness. This isn’t anywhere near that level of persuasiveness. You’ve only used just over 300 words so you need to make the absolute most out of them and you didn’t. You used up way too much of your debate just writing out a summary of the situation rather than using the situation to support your argument. You set up the large expectations that a Man City would manager would have in the current climate ok as a basis to start your argument but then you really need to start pulling the points out on the reasoning as to why it was the right decision and building on each point. Read some of the winning debates on Show 1 and note how they structure their debate and how they make multiple points and don’t just state them but use them in a persuasive manner to strengthen their argument on the topic.

Raging Eboue - You need to sort out your full stops and commas first and foremost. It doesn’t read very well with really long sentences separated by commas rather than full stops. First paragraph is good to set the scene and clearly states from the get go which side you’re arguing for. There are some good points within your debate to support your argument. I liked the stability point and the point about Utd losing their manager. Both debates could have been strengthened though by discrediting arguments for the opposite side to strengthen their own side of the argument. I did enjoy your only source of reference being Mancini’s Wikipedia page too.

Winner - Raging Eboue


Winner via Unanimous Decision - Raging Eboue


WHINY CUNT vs Fandango vs Scott Hall's Ghost vs The Fourth Wall
Should the Womens Division in WWE be scrapped?


*WHINY CUNT withdrew.*

Spoiler for Debates:
Fandango

I have been a wrestling fan for nearly a decade and for my entire duration of being a fan, the divas division has always been seen as a running gag. As a ten year old boy who sat in front of the TV admiring The Undertaker, I would also see beautiful bombshells like Torrie Wilson, Dawn Marie, and Sable compete in lingerie matches, bikini shows, pudding matches, and other contests. These women were and are sources of eye candy and should only be used in such instances; to put over male superstars. I am all for the WWE to scrap their womens division.

The PG Era has been received by mostly negative reviews from hardcore professional wrestling fans and rightfully so. The product that we grew up watching compared to what we see right now is as different as night and day. This isn’t a knock on WWE because they have their justifiable reasons as to why they have toned down their product. The change in directed audience really hurts the divas of WWE possibly more than anyone else. For as long as I can remember, divas have relied on their good looks to gain popularity and further themselves in the hierarchy of WWE. Good female wrestlers like Trish Stratus and Sable may be seen as pioneers of divas wrestling, but they too started off as mere sex symbols. They exposed their bodies, the fans started to hoot and holler, and slowly but surely they started developing a decent fanbase which allowed them to propel their careers to new heights as serious competitors, all while still maintaining their sex image of course. Even less accomplished divas such as Torrie Wilson, Maria, and Stacy Keibler used means such as Playboy centerfolds and raunchy magazines and DVDs to solidify their stance as divas who were loved by all.

For as long as divas have existed in WWE, the fans have been taught not to care for them. Whether they are exposing their bodies in suggestive manner or if they are competing in two minute matches on a weekly episode of Monday Night Raw, it’s evident that WWE doesn’t care. If they did, they wouldn’t be skipping around in their bikinis or having romance angles with The Great Khali. They would be put against each other in competition, just like the males. And if WWE doesn’t care, why should we, the fans, invest our time and emotion into something so meaningless? There have been some instances where divas can’t even get two minutes of airtime on a three hour episode of Raw. And when they do, you can hear crickets in the arena. A pin drop would sound louder than the reaction of the crowd when two divas are in the ring “wrestling”, if you even want to call it that. A bunch of obnoxious screaming that at times makes me want to mute my TV out of sheer embarrassment mixed in with hair pulling and rolling around is not the formula for a passable match, even by diva standards. I understand the WWE style is a little watered down and that’s fine considering that these people are on the road 300 days a year, but would it hurt to have some sort of athleticism? Just for the sake of making the casual fan think for a second “Hey, maybe these girls aren’t just a bunch of wannabe, plastic models who are just using WWE for future opportunities elsewhere. Maybe they really do belong here..”.

If WWE management can’t set aside even a few minutes every Monday to showcase its female wrestlers, what exactly does that tell you about their priorities? Combine that with the amount of abandoned angles over the years, to the lack of genuine characters, to the restrictions set by WWE’s new mantra – it makes it a no brainer that the women’s division in WWE should be abolished. I understand that currently there is a pretty decent feud going on between AJ and Kaitlyn, but we’ve seen a number of “decent” feuds over the years that gave the division a glimmer of hope for a few weeks until the angles were suddenly dropped and the division was back to square one – a joke. With that being said, I don’t think that divas should be gone entirely from WWE as I think they can be useful to help put over the male stars such as Summer Rae with Fandango or AJ with Ziggler. With that being said, they should only be used in that capacity; to make the dominant males look good.


Scott Hall's Ghost

The foundation of the wrestling industry we all know and love stands upon three main pillars; tradition, entertainment, and business. Whenever changes are made to our beloved institution, it is always connected to at least one of these pillars.

When Vince McMahon Jr. decided to break away from the longstanding territory system—breaking with ‘tradition’—it was to expand the business to new heights in a financial risk that would make a billionaire out of a millionaire, and millionaires out of many more. While it was an unexpected and revolutionary change, the entertainment and business perks it would create were as successful as the decision was controversial.

When the ‘fourth wall’ was shattered in the mid 1990’s as wrestling painfully transitioned from the hair and muscles of the 1980’s to the ‘smarks’ and sex of the 2000’s, it was not only out of a desire to keep the entertainment on the threshold of the unexpected and evocative, but also served to create all new avenues of financial windfall, as well as further a rich legacy and tradition of being culturally relevant and significant—something Vince’s aforementioned earlier changes had created the possibility for.

Whether through Rock-N-Wrestling, the nWo, or ‘Touts’, the wrestling industry has always shown an ability to grow and change to the ever shifting needs and desires of its audience—seeking to provide a product that honours wrestling’s tradition, provides quality entertainment, and creates financially successful business. As a result, when major changes can be considered, one must weigh and measure what is proposed against these three pillars to better understand both what is at stake and where, potentially, different decisions could lead.

Many feel, in an industry full of fast and powerful men, that women (less strong, slower, etc.) simply aren’t needed. A lesser product in a completely consumer-based world, where the consumption simply won’t satisfy the way the ‘real’ wresters do(1). However, since we know that the real discussion centers on our ‘three pillars’, let’s see where the women’s division falls within each.

Tradition. Women’s wrestling dates back nearly as far as men’s in the ‘pro wrestling’ world. While professional wrestling morphed and changed from the late 1800’s to the mid-1940’s, it wasn’t until the late 1940’s/early 1950’s that the sport began to truly take root as a financially viable and publically popular entity all to its own(2).

From this early point in the popular industry’s history, women’s wrestling was a part of the wrestling world’s collective consciousness. The Diva’s Championship held today was unified with the WWE Women’s Championship in 2010—that championship traced its roots all the way back to the NWA Women’s Championship which officially began in 1954 and itself traced a legacy all the way back to 1935.

A reason for this long-standing tradition was, as with most things in the industry, due to entertainment. Women have struggled in the 20th century to find a place long-missed in society of equality and fairness of treatment. A surprising pioneer in this fight was the world of wrestling. Women having their own ‘division’, or separation physically, from the men was common sense.

The reasoning? It was simply more entertaining to see fair match-ups of some sort. As well as fair, seeing a card of diverse match-ups also maximized the entertainment fans would get watching an afternoon of wrestling. Thus, from a pure ‘entertainment’ standpoint: having heavyweights, luche libre’s, lightweights, women, as well as an element of ‘uniqueness’, created the most variety and the greatest level of entertainment(3).

Another facet of this entertainment ties closely into the business/financial end, as well: women. It has been relevant since the post-war feminist movement to provide storylines and role models for young women that will excite, encourage, and connect with them in a unique way. It is this personal connection that creates the most committed audience, and women’s wrestling has always striven to provide a place for this to be possible.

Regardless of how engaging/effective this is for the male audience(4), the female audience—especially younger viewers—can connect with women wrestlers in a special way. And, to maintain a healthy financial model moving forward, it’s clear that this connection is a positive one to develop.

While connecting with a female audience, women are also great ambassadors for various goodwill, public image, and marketing campaigns. Maintaining a strong female presence pays in more than just PPV buys. They are a part of the worldwide presence and image of WWE in general, for better or worse.

There’s no doubt that the women’s division has struggled at times due to poor writing and uninspiring in-ring product, but looking at the tradition, entertainment (at least for a large minority), and business arguments for a women’s division, it’s clear that while changes may be necessary, scrapping it entirely just isn’t the right call.













Footnotes:

1 It would be interesting to note here: many people have made the same arguments about Lucha Libre, light-heavyweight/cruiserweight, etc. in regard to ‘bigger, stronger, faster’, but these skill-sets and unique presentations of the sport have always remained a vital part of the industry.

2 This is not to say there weren’t popular events and champions before then, but the advent of television in every family’s home, as well as more financial backing to the sport helped it break through/over the top.

3 Despite so many changes, this is something we see consistently presented to this day on television, though it’s been adjusted for a more current product. Still, Sin Cara/Big Show/Randy Orton/Evan Bourne/Layla all show the ongoing diversity in the product fans crave.

4 It would be fair here to say that while not ‘all’ women’s wrestling is effective in connecting with a male audience, there are many examples where female presences have positively affected the story-telling product being engaged. I feel this doesn’t need to be beaten to death—from Chyna, to lingerie, to the recent knockouts match in TNA—there has always been something men have connected with/appreciated.


The Fourth Wall

Should the Womens Division in WWE be scrapped?

Women used to play a big part in WWE and the women's division used to feature big name women such as Trish Stratus and Lita, who can be argued as some of the greatest women wrestlers to ever step foot in a wrestling ring. They both had passion and drive and women wrestling still wanted to be seen by wrestling fans. Now it feels like nobody cares anymore, not even WWE. We can go through weeks and weeks of television without seeing a single woman wrestling and no one will blink an eye about it. Therefore because WWE doesn't try, the fans don't try to connect with the women either which means it is usually silent during their matches. Whenever a women's match is coming up people usually roll their eyes and state it as their 'toilet break' and we never see any actual storyline progression with them which means the women's division just continues to sink in to oblivion.

The division in WWE is currently filled with lots of talent but none of them look to be going anywhere. The right women are not being used correctly, Natalya makes appearances on a regular basis but it's not wrestling, she's just dancing with Khali in the middle of the ring. Natalya is too good to be wasted with something like that and she should not be sitting in the sidelines not doing anything, she deserves to be out there and possibly be a contender for the title; but as time passes she continues to not be used by WWE. This is the case with a lot of women in WWE. From our point of view, it doesn't seem like WWE cares when they set up a match and it just seems so thrown together and cluttered which is a resemblance of the state of the division right now. How are the Diva's of WWE meant to establish themselves if the matches are just thrown together and how are we meant to connect with them? It's impossible because there is never a guaranteed storyline going on with the Diva's, this usually means they often don't make appearances to wrestle. Women haven't been featured in the last two Per-Per-Views that WWE has produced, WrestleMania and Extreme Rules. When they are featured, it's usually a measly match lasting no longer than three minutes, the Women of WWE deserve better than that, they are putting in the effort, so should WWE too.

The thing that's stopping me from saying it should be scrapped is the fact that there is still potential there, it's just not being utilized correctly. Let's take a look at NXT Wrestling, it's jam-packed with talented women who are fantastic wrestlers and could be a great asset to the Diva's Division in WWE. However, the problem is that if they were indeed brought up on to the Main Roster how would they be used? Would they just be wasted like the current Main Roster women or would they be actually used correctly by WWE and placed in a storyline? I believe that they wouldn't be utilized correctly by WWE and that they will end up on the same path as the current women on the roster and that is not needed. You have women such as Paige who is working hard in NXT and showing why she should be on the Main Roster and I'd love to see her get there but what is going to happen when she finally reaches her goal? Will she just be met with disappointment?

It shouldn't be scrapped because there is still potential there to be used, it just isn't being utilized Let's take some tips from their rival promotion TNA. At their recent Slammiversary Pay-Per-View, Taryn Terrell went up against Gail Kim, two women who used to be wrestlers in WWE. They had an amazing showing at the Pay-Per-View and the crowd was in to it the entire way through cheering and chanting, they even got some chants such as "This is awesome!" from the crowd. What this proves is that there is still a place for women in wrestling if they are utilized correctly. WWE has a ton of talent in the Women's Division just waiting on the sidelines for something to happen. If WWE put in the effort then the fan's will put in the effort to get behind the Women of WWE too. They need to take action now before it's too late. There's no need to continue wasting the Division and that leading to it's eventual demise. If it does get scrapped then that just shows that WWE didn't want to put in the effort to improve the division, which doesn't look good at all. With time and effort the Women's Division of WWE can be popular once again.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Headliner
Fandango's was a solid debate but I felt like it was too easy of a stance to take aand not convincing enough for me to believe the division should be removed. Also, the debater did tell us that the division was successful at one time; which means there is a record of success.

Scott Hall's Ghost wins. Scott Hall's Ghost wins because the debater was able to incorporate elements outside of wrestling such as the struggle for equality, fairness and relate that to his debate on how womens wrestling started. You also had solid arguments for keeping tradition alive throughout the evolution of the business. I would have liked to see you define your answer in the beginning like I told most jobbers debaters in the 1st card though.

The Fourth Wall's sounded like a text of confusion. You didn't define your answer at first. By the 3rd paragraph you weren't sure what your full answer was and you started to defend the potential of womens wrestling. You can't defend both sides. Pick a side and stay on that side.

Winner - Scott Hall's Ghost

Clique
Fandango's what an interesting take on the argument. You gave an understandable explanation about divas having a place in the show, just not performing in a wrestling division. Your position holds up based on the examples of the most successful divas, what it took for them to become successful, and what they did with those accomplishment outside of wrestling. This debate was spot on in highlighting is a division is treated so insignificantly then no time should be wasted on it.

As a 20+ year fan of wrestling I appreciated the historical context Scott Hall's Ghost provided but also your description of three important factors in the wrestling business. I had to read this debate out loud because the debate was so well-written. You told a mini-history lesson and gave considerable explanations how women have played a role in wrestling essentially since the beginning, particularly in WWE. More importantly you used that history as reasoning for the division to continue. Debate laid out a well-structured argument as you can get.

The Fourth Wall also brought up some of the issues Debate A made about WWE not putting substantial effort on the division for the majority of fans to care about the Divas Division. Your core argument was so good and it makes this decision more difficult because everyone was stellar here, but I fell for how Debate B structured his with the historical context and how it directs to the position women in wrestling are at today.

So the winner is Scott Hall's Ghost. Great stuff. Maybe my favorite debate this round.

Seabs
Fandango - Use of “hoot and holler” is a great way to get me on side from the start btw. I thought there were signs of here that you could put together a really good debate maybe next time but it didn’t work here. It’s structured well and reads very well but the actual content of the debate needed improving. After I read I felt like I’d read a well written article but not a strong debate that made good points to get me to support their argument. Your 2nd paragraph doesn’t really argue your side of the debate that well. I came out of thinking that the divas were able to make the most out of their limitations and still got really over rather than yeah there should be no womens division showcased in WWE anymore. Then the 3rd paragraph goes on to talk about the bad booking and wrestling in the division but I didn’t think it was a point that really strengthened your argument. It’s a valid point but not really a strong one. You probably could have gotten away with it more but this was the bulk of your argument. It’s rubbish so do away with it. It’s not the strongest basis of an argument. You’re also kinda accepting that the standards can’t improve and that there’s no divas who could improve the quality of the wrestling or a booker that could improve the booking of the divas. Both of these are very possible and make your argument fall apart a little. Just because it’s in a bad state now doesn’t really mean they should just kill it off. You mentioned previously how divas have got over before so this argument probably would have been best used to argue the other side and say yes the booking is bad right now but give it more attention and it could bring success because women can get over in WWE. You did address that it’s a different era now though and it would be harder for this to happen. On your next topic try to look a bit deeper into the topic and come up with stronger and maybe more creative points to base your argument around other than it sucks, it should die. Do that and you’ll get somewhere because with some stronger points to back your argument up you’d have a good debate.

Scott Hall’s Ghost - I wasn’t sure which side of the debate you were arguing for until the second to last paragraph. That’s a major problem. I enjoyed reading your piece at first and got 4 paragraphs in before realising that everything I’d read really had nothing to do with the debate topic. But it was well written so I wasn’t having any trouble reading through it. The whole piece is well written. I keep referring to it as a piece btw because it’s not a debate. You leave it until the very last moment to actually state which side you’re arguing for and you barely argue that point at all. What you do is deliver a very well written article on the history of women’s wrestling but that’s pretty useless here and you don’t even use it a strong base to found your argument on. You hint at reasons for keeping the division but you the ratio of points to support your argument to irrelevant background information is way too lopsided in the wrong direction. The points you do make are actually good which makes it even more of a shame because I’m sure if you concentrated on them points more that you would have done a great job of arguing your side of the debate. The 2nd and 3rd to last paragraphs feature really good points in support of your argument but they’re so brief and you leave it so late that the effectiveness of them is really limited. What you needed to do was cut all the drivel before that which added nothing to your debate and expand more on the good points that you so briefly mentioned at the end.

The Fourth Wall - It’s not the best sign when I’m unsure which side of the debate you’re arguing for. You never seem to fully commit to arguing for one side or the other and there’s even one point where you seem to switch sides. Your first paragraph states the success that women in WWE have had and then states the poor situation that the division is currently in. So straight away you’re stating positives and negatives of the division without stating which side of the debate you’re committing to. Then the next 2 paragraphs go on to talk about how the talent and potential is there but it’s not being utilised correctly. Still not sure which side you’re arguing for. Last paragraph and you finally actually state the side you’re on. Don’t assume that because you know which side you’re arguing that we know. State it as clearly as you can and as early as you can. Your final paragraph is better. You finally make your stance clear and begin to make some clear arguments in support of your argument. Next time make sure you really commit to a side of the debate, make it clear from the start and really back your argument up with plenty of strong points that strengthen your debate.

I tend to give a lot more feedback for poorer debates and there’s a lot more feedback for these 3 debates than I gave for any match on the first show. There are signs of the potential for a good debate in all 3 though at least and I’m sure your next debate will be better if you take note and act on the feedback. Reading these really made me want to debate this topic myself and show you how it’s done. Even just off the top of my head I can come up with close to a handful of points in favour of keeping the division, some which none of you even touched upon, let alone expanded on. You could have really expanded on the past success that past divas have had and how they’ve also brought extra media attention to WWE through outside photoshoots for example. Then if you want to argue for keeping them in a wrestling role rather than a non wrestling role you could reference the ratings success that TNA’s knockouts have when they wrestle. C touched upon this but the point needed expanding on more and would have been better to use the ratings figures as the source of success rather than the live crowd’s reaction to just one match which could easily be an anomaly. There’s also the divas in NXT that have legit potential to be draws for WWE in a women’s division. Again one of you touched on this but you needed to really go to town on it and argue the daylights out of it to persuade people into agreeing with your point of view. Maybe there’s some bias on my end because I love the gimmick but I was hoping someone would reference the success that Emma’s gimmick in NXT is having on a regular basis with the live crowd and the potential that a gimmick like that has in modern society where dance fads are all the range. Probably the biggest argument in favour is the impact on WWE’s public image and how they need to promote equality to save their corporate friendly image and Steph’s role in the company. Giving the win to Fandango for actually making it clear what he was arguing and making an attempt to argue it well.

Winner - Fandango


Winner via Split Decision - Scott Hall's Ghost


*Shepard is backstage trying to fulfill one of his 3 contractually obliged interivews*

Shepard: Evo! Any nerves ahead of your debate?

Evolution: What? No.

Shepard: You must admit that adrian_zombo will be tough competition though right?

Evolution: Get the fuck ouuta my face

Shepard: Surely you're aware of the threat that he poses though?

Evolution: There is no threat and please don't call me Shirley.

Fresh Dougie vs KingBebe vs Scottish-Suplex vs The Ratman
Argue for or against the Intercontinental and US Championship's being unified.


*KingBebe no shows*

Spoiler for Debates:
Scottish-Suplex

Should the Intercontinental and United States Championships be Unified?

The top of the mountain is a small platform, and while I stray into another of tonight’s debate topics, I believe it’s only big enough for one Superstar. Conversely the rest of this mountain is a wider expanse of land and can fit many Superstars. This metaphor is the basis for my argument that while the existence of two World Championships is a problem, multiple midcard championships is not and with that said, the Intercontinental Championship and the U.S Championship need not be unified.

The current roster in the WWE is approximately 60 men strong. These levels consist of the main eventers, the midcarders which can also be divided into the up and comers and the veteran main eventers going through a dry period. And along with them are also the jobbers of which can be divided into the glorified jobbers such as Santino Marella who will get the occasional win to please the crowd and the sort of jobber who isn’t going anywhere like JTG. Further-more this all occurs over 8 hours of weekly programming featuring the entirety of the roster now that the brand-split has ended.

One could argue the end of the brand-split ended the need for multiple titles which were originally created to be representative of separate brands. I say instead that these titles weren’t affected by the brand reunification and that in such a large potentially oversaturated market, these titles are needed to give purpose to the superstars who can’t get a chance in the main-event but need a meaningful chance in the midcard to showcase their potential. Yes, there can be non-title feuds, but more and more this appears to be something accomplished only by established veterans like Randy Orton or debuting talent in mini-feuds which rarely accomplish anything meaningful like a PPV match.

When the brand split ended, suddenly two World Titles met and one became dominant, the WWE title. In the process the World Heavyweight Title was belittled. It dipped down PPV card and clarified the pecking order to all who watched. This isn’t the case for midcard titles. They’re never at the top, they’re titles to be held by those who have a shot at making it to the top or a way to maintain relevance in a roster so large it’s easy to be forgotten about. This is why any reunification match wouldn’t achieve anything a champion vs. champion match already would. Two medium-level titles will never truly equate to much more than the original titles and also leave the midcard with significantly less, assuming a new midcard title wasn’t immediately introduced.

This is the attitude the WWE has always has, at times having nearly twice the amount of titles it has today to give their Superstars programs, as well as utilising concepts such as the King of the Ring and the Brawl-For-All. In the end the titles are just props for talent-enhancement, and right now in the current WWE there are no real viable alternative titles:


Cruiserweight-Title: WWE story-telling is simple: good trumps evil in every way including move-sets. During his heel run, you would be lucky if Del Rio performed a baseball slide dropkick, now that he’s a face a suicide dive will be seen in every other match. There are no cruiserweight heels in the WWE right now that have been booked as a credible threat (Hunico, Primo, Epico) except for those who have moved firmly into the World Title scene (CM Punk, Daniel Bryan). A Cruiserweight Division would be too small and lack credibility.

Hardcore-Title-: No “Hardcore” stipulation match held in the current WWE would be especially satisfying, and any inhumane stipulation match could easily be implemented for some other title defence like the WWE title. Plus if 24/7 rules were ever implemented, you know Hornswoggle would win the title, and between that, his Cruiserweight reign and repeated tag-teaming he’s getting too close to a Grand-Slam for my liking.


In conclusion, I’m enjoying Dean Ambrose, he and the Shield were at risk of becoming stale but then they moved into the midcard championship scene and tonight he puts his U.S title on the line against a Grand-Slam Champion to prove his worth. Here we see the midcard titles at their best doing what they were made to do, promote talent who can make it into future main-events. Yes, the titles can be miss-booked like with Barrett or Kofi’s reigns which have damaged the name of parties which had a lot to offer, but at its heart WWE is about men fighting to be the best and to get there, there can be check points along the way and with such a big roster, more than one is needed. With this in my mind I feel unification would be detrimental and unnecessary for the WWE.


Fresh Dougie

Here go my debate right here:






Every promotion had a secondary title, somewhat used as a tool to groom that particular champion into a future main eventer. Guys like Ric Flair, Harley Race, Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, The Rock, HHH, Roddy Piper and Ricky Steamboat, to name a few, have held one of these titles prior to becoming main event talents. However, the purpose for each of those belts isn't the same as it was, hell, 15 years ago. The current product has basically devalued the meaning of those belts and hasn't done a good job in using them as a stepping stone to boost talent into the main event. Based on that, I'd say yes, the Intercontinental & United States titles should be unified.

The 2 biggest reasons I feel this way are, first, because of the brand extension being dropped. And I'm not talking about the "brand extension" of the past 5-6 years, I'm talking about the brand extension pre-Backlash 2007. Before Backlash 2007, only the big 4 PPV's were "co-promoted" and the other 8 were "brand exclusive". That created the opportunity to actually build into programs with plenty of time to develop angles for the respective championships. Pre-2007, you wouldn't have Jeff Hardy feud for the Intercontinental title for a few months, lose the rubber match and immediately go after the United States title. There would always be a new component introduced and we don't get that today. Instead, we get Miz feuding for both mid card titles within a month. On paper, that concept would come off as bad, especially since creative fails to come up with a way to differentiate Miz' Intercontinental title chase from his United States title chase.

The other reason is the quality of booking. You would think that with a 5 hours of TV a week and 3 hours of PPV a month, some kind of interest would be generated towards each title. But, it's not. The writing has made the Intercontinental and United States titles mean even less than they should, partly because both serve a purpose that can be better met with just using one or the other, but mainly because the writing team does nothing to separate one from the other. However, I don't think it's possible to differentiate one from the other and that is because, for a combined 48 years (pre-WCW buyout), the Intercontinental and United States titles were key in getting to the next level in their respective promotions. And over the course of those combined 48 years, we've seen several periods were both companies were victim of shitty writing but one thing remained certain and that was that they always did give their championships meaning.

Miz & Kofi Kingston are 2 examples as to why the titles should be unified. For Kofi, the past 5 years of his career has largely centered around one of those titles. For Miz, a guy who was pushed to the moon and main evented Wrestlemania, only to drop back to mid card status, he seems to be taking away from a potential younger talent who could benefit from the exposure. Having both titles seems to be an excuse to justify not having anything for a talent to do but not wanting to release him. If those titles were used to give guys like Alex Riley, JTG, Damien Sandow or even Heath Slater, a boost, it would be no problem to keep them both. But, it's not. It's instead used to keep guys like Kofi around, despite after 5 years, failing to show why he should be higher on the card, which is the purpose of those titles anyway. And I'm not faulting Kofi for that, I'm faulting WWE for using the titles as nothing more than a consolation prize.

At this point, I feel it would not only be better for us, the fans, but for the wrestlers (the way we perceive them), as well, if they just unify both belts. It would make the title seem more coveted than the way it is treated currently and in the case of "not having anything for guys to do", can create interest in a mid card feud by allowing it to have ample exposure on both TV and PPV, a form of exposure neither title receives consistently at the moment because of flawed booking and failure to differentiate one title from the other.

The Ratman

With the WWE having only one roster that competes on both Raw and Smackdown, it is completely pointless to have two mid card titles. The same goes with the WWE Championship and the World Heavyweight Championship.

But however I do believe they should both have the Intercontinental and United States titles if they ONLY do the brand split again. Look at it this way, lets go back a few years ago when the WWE had the brand split when Raw had the Intercontinental title and Smackdown had the United States title. Wouldn’t be odd if Raw and Smackdown were to add one more mid carder title to their shows? Yes it would be odd. Well that’s how the WWE is now. It is odd having two mid card titles with only the one roster.

By having the Intercontinental Championship and the United States Champion being competed on both shows, there is not one guy is at the top of the mid carders. As of now we the WWE Universe, do not know who is the top mid carder is right now. Is it Wade Barrett or Dean Ambrose? If the WWE were to unify the Intercontinental and United States Championships, there would be that one guy who is the best mid carder on the roster. As of now, I guess we have two mid carder champions that compete on both shows. Sorry but it makes no since to me to have two champions that represent the mid carders of the WWE.

Another reason is that they should be unified is to bring back prestige back to the Intercontinental Championship. For a long time now, the WWE has treated the Intercontinental Championship with no respect. Some of the greatest wrestlers in WWE history were know to have the Intercontinental Championship such as Randy Savage, Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, Ultimate Warrior, and Chris Jericho. Now a days they just give the title to anybody. One night Wade Barrett loses it to The Miz and the very next day The Miz loses it back to Wade Barrett. This is not the Hardcore title, this is the Intercontinental Championship, one of the biggest titles in WWE history. It really is a shame what they have done to the Intercontinental title. The WWE will probably replace it within a few years, just like what they did with the Women’s Championship.

I believe they should unify both titles and just keep it as the Intercontinental Championship instead of keeping the United States title or making a whole new championship. They did it right with unifying the tag team titles, now they need to unify these two along with the WWE and World Heavyweight Championship. All the WWE needs is four championships. The should only have the WWE Championship, Intercontinental Championship, WWE Tag Team Championships, and the Divas Champion so they can only have one title to represent each group. Having two separate titles represent a group of wrestlers in just stupid and pointless.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
Scotish-Suplex - I liked this debate but at the end of it I didn’t really think you convinced me that the titles shouldn’t be unified and that’s the key to a strong debate, being able to convince the reader to agree with your point of view. After reading this I wasn’t sure why I was supposed to agree with your point of view on the topic. Intro is good and sets the scene for your debate well. 2nd and 3rd paragraphs then make some good points that would have been a good base for your argument but you never expand on them or raise a really convincing point to support your argument. I would have just cut the part about the alternative titles because it doesn’t really add anything to your debate and is just using up valuable word count. The topic is whether the two titles should be unified, not if one should be replaced by another title. Conclusion like the intro is strong and the point about the title elevating an act like Ambrose and adding credibility to them is good but I wished you’d really expanded on that point in your debate rather than talking about alternative titles. Tie that in with your point about the size of the roster requiring two midcard belts for example.

Fresh Dougie - Good debate. Argued your side well with clarity and focused your whole debate on arguing your side without wasting time on stuff that doesn’t matter. Your points are good but I think there’s a pretty big flaw in your point about how they are used to keep Miz/Kofi relevant being used to support unifying the belts. If there’s a reliance on giving these guys the belt to keep them relevant then won’t taking one of them away restrict the chances of someone who can gain something from holding a midcard belt? At least with two of them there’s almost twice the chance of one of them being used properly? Also, you mention how the booking of the midcard talent is poor but then go on to state that if one title is taken away it will force the booking team to be more creative writing angles for midcarders without an easy title program to put them into. If the ability to write creative non title angles for the large roster that they have was there wouldn’t it be used? I’m not saying it would be it’s a potential pothole in your argument that you could have addressed.

The Ratman - Another very solid effort. Similar points to the other 2 debates. There are good points but I wanted you to take one or two points and really expand on them or come up with a greater variety of points that support your argument. That definitely would have edged this tie for either one of you. “Wouldn’t be odd if Raw and Smackdown were to add one more mid carder title to their shows? Yes it would be odd. Well that’s how the WWE is now. It is odd having two mid card titles with only the one roster.” - not really the same because the roster size is essentially twice as large as just Raw or Smackdown’s was during the brand split. I mostly agree with your point in your second paragraph but to play devil’s advocate, is being the sole champion of the midcarders really the same as being the sole champion of an entire roster/exclusive division?

Really tough call. All 3 debates I certainly thought were solid for first showings and showed promise but neither stands out as an obvious winner.

Winner - Fresh Dougie

Clique
Scottish-Suplex lost me a little with the cruiserweight and hardcore title examples. I understand the point you were making as you mentioned the limited options the midcard talent has to perform in worthwhile programs. The current example of Dean Ambrose is a good one and instead of your expansion on how other titles wouldn’t fit, I would have liked for you to have expanded your example on how the Intercontinental Title’s existence today is still a positive.

Fresh Dougie, however, did offer substantial points on why two titles are not necessary. You mentioned the writing and booking faults with the United States and Intercontinental Title contenders. Everything you said about the Miz jumping from the US Title to the IC Title was undeniable to think about. Mentioning the brand extension and the purpose of the midcard titles then compared the time dedicated to those feuds now on one roster hit the mark in your argument as well. Awesome job.

That brings me to The Ratman. Your line about the two midcard titles on serving a purpose on two brands of yesteryear and not so much on today’s single roster was even better. One of the best comparisons in this debate especially the way you worded it. You also said your piece on why the prestige has faded due to booking faults and the like.

It was close between Fresh Dougie and The Ratman, almost a draw for me but I will declare Fresh Dougie the winner based on his example of Miz and the United States and Intercontinental title situation which I thought tied perfectly into argument for a title unification.

The Lady Killer
Well, I just fucking wrote a novel on these three, and when I went to submit it fucking timed me out of my account and I lose the entire thing . Therefore, here's the Cliff's Notes version.

The Ratman - Strong intro with the mountain metaphor, and solid support using the "oversaturated" talent pool as a counter to the "end of the brand split" rebuttal. However, I felt that the second half of your debate lost focus a bit. You began talking about the potential unification of the WWE/World titles, and then branched off into a discussion about defunct titles. I see that you were trying to draw a parallel, but I felt this would've been much more effective if it had been succinct so as to not take away from the solid first half of your debate. Long story short: Great first half, weak second half.

Fresh Dougie - This debate took the stance of the first debate and turned it on its side. Great opener, claiming that the midcard titles have lost importance over the years, then delving right into the crux of the argument - end of the brand split. Solid support with Miz battling for the US title one week then the IC title the next.

This transitioned nicely into the second argument: bad booking. I liked that you used the term "differentiate" to support your claim that the belts have been so devalued, nobody really knows/cares which is which, and therefore there is no need for 2, as this only devalues them further. No longer are the belts being used as a stepping stone to the main event as they were before. Nice.

The Ratman - This basically followed a similar path as Fresh Dougie, albeit not as effective. I felt this lost focus and essentially began answering a different question entirely when you started making claims such as "The IC belt should be the one left standing," and "A, B, C and D should be the only belts showcased in the WWE." I kinda see where you were going, but to me it seemed like two separate debates. Strong start, muddled finish.

Winner - Fresh Dougie.


Winner via Unanimous Decision - Fresh Dougie


*A promotional video airs hyping that Signs Ups for TDL will be re-opening after the announcement of the card for TDL III*

*Afterwards follows a promotional video for JIM'S GYM hosted by JIM himself, promoting his gym for newcomers to brush up on their skills at*


TDL Social Division Title Tournament Semi Final
Makaveli vs BULLY

Should the protesting of military funerals by the Westboro Baptist Church be illegal?


Spoiler for Debates:
BULLY
Should the protesting of military funerals by the Westboro Baptist Church be illegal?

No.

In order to answer this question effectively we first have to look at the bill of rights, and in particular the first amendment, and see if it applies to the Westboro Baptist church.

The first amendment

AMENDMENT I

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

Notice that I highlighted the word "peaceably" if they choose to protest in a manner not be-fitting to being peaceful, then absolutely they should be arrested on the spot. In 1995, Phelps Sr.'s eldest grandson, Benjamin Phelps, was convicted of assault and disorderly conduct after spitting upon the face of a passerby during a picket. I don't condone that kind of behavior, he was punished and rightfully so. However, that was an isolated incident and they generally follow the letters of the law.

Let us now look to history to see how peaceful protests have not only been effective, but have helped change not only America, but other parts of the world for the better.

Examples of peaceful protests in history

The People Power Revolution

"The People Power Revolution (also known as the EDSA Revolution, the Philippine Revolution of 1986, and the Yellow Revolution) was a series of popular demonstrations in the Philippines that began in 1983 and culminated in 1986. The methods used amounted to a sustained campaign of civil resistance against regime violence and electoral fraud. This case of nonviolent revolution led to the departure of President Ferdinand Marcos and the restoration of the country's democracy."

THE MONTGOMERY BUS BOYCOTT (1955–1956)

"Objective: Lessen racial segregation and inequality for blacks in the American South

Method of Protest: Montgomery’s black population refused to use public transportation.

Results: An Alabama district court ruled that the racial segregation was unlawful. The decision was appealed but upheld by the Supreme Court.

Was the Protest a Success? Yes. It also served as the impetus for the civil rights movement of the 1960s."

THE TREE SITTERS OF PUREORA (1978)

"Objective: Stop deforestation of the Pureora forest in New Zealand

Method of Protest: Built tree houses, refused to leave them

Results: The Government agreed to permanently stop logging operations and the area became a park.

Was the Protest a Success? Yes. It has also inspired many other tree-sitting protests, with varying levels of success."

These are only but a few examples, there are many more.

I implore you, put aside your feelings of the Westboro church and their questionable ideals and look at the bigger picture.

I put it to you, how would you feel if you were unable to protest something that you hold dear, because of the actions of a select few, because if the westboro church, regardless if you agree with their reasoning, deemed the practise illegal, again, depriving you of a basic right? Something that has been a proud part of america for hundreds of years? Because that could very well happen. No. We can't say " Okay you can't protest this but you can protest that."

It would set an unwelcome precedent, because and especially when it comes to a military funerals, these men died fighting for their country to protect the very ideal of freedom of speech and the bill of rights so for this to be taken away would be catastrophic and would take away what the very soldiers the westboro church are picketing have worked so hard to fight for.

Instead of banning peaceful protests altogether let us just set healthy boundaries.
I do believe that there should be restrictions in place. They should have restrictions in place to ensure they stay x amount of feet away from the funerals to ensure the mourners can still mourn and grieve in peace with their loved ones, (which was passed in the state of Arizona which limited protesters to 300 feet of the funeral) and in the case of the state of Oklahoma, where they imposed a law stating that they may only protest two hours before and after the funeral service. But to deem the entire practice of free speech and protest illegal, is a resounding NO from me.

In closing:

One of the things that makes America so great, is that it's citizens are afforded the right to free speech. In other parts of the world they aren't always afforded that right, And the punishment can be quite severe. There are protests all over the world that I don't agree with (including the Westboro churches) but everyone is entitled to their beliefs as ridiculous as they may seem.

First amendment: http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment
Restrictions in oklahoma: http://www.newson6.com/story/1446867...neral-protests
Arizona passes funeral protest legislation: http://edition.cnn.com/2011/US/01/11...oro/index.html
Peaceful protests in history:
http://mentalfloss.com/article/29040...er-they-worked
People power revolution: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/People_Power_Revolution

Makaveli
No, absolutely not. Just because we don’t agree with something or someone doesn’t make us right nor does it make it or them wrong. Free speech needs to be upheld and maintained no matter how absurd that speech may be because it’s all subjective. Most reasonable and rational minded people will agree that the Westboro Baptist Church’s beliefs and practices are well beyond extreme and would go as far as to say that their morals have been corrupted. But just because what they believe is different doesn’t make them wrong because to them, they’re fighting for a cause they believe to be right and we can’t prosecute someone because our morals and beliefs differ from theirs.

However, for argument’s sake, let’s just say that we can. We are going to form a law that makes it so the Westboro Baptist Church can no longer protest military funerals or practice any of their other batshit crazy beliefs. First, we must understand what a law is. Dictionary.com defines a law as,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dictionary.com
“the principles and regulations established in a community by some authority and applicable to its people, whether in the form of legislation or of custom and policies recognized and enforced by judicial decision.”
Keywords here being: principles, regulations, and authority. We need principles and regulations for which this law to be defined by and followed and also an authority figure to set these principles and regulations as well as prosecute those who violate this law. Well, the authority figure is apparent: the esteemed United States government. The principles and regulations? Whatever the government sees fit. Yes, the government now has the jurisdiction to decide what kind of speech is punishable by law. Criticizing Obama’s latest policies may land you in the slammer. Your attitudes toward gay rights may have you facing hard time. Your disdain toward Zucchini may have you sitting next to Charles Manson. These scenarios may seem dubious and contrived at first, but they can become a very harsh reality when the government can toss you in jail simply because you challenged their authority or disagreed with them.

Limiting free speech is a characteristic of a totalitarian government. They control your speech, they control your thought, and they control your freedom. They don’t tolerate free expression, free thinking, or free will. They punish those who think for themselves and seek to liberate others. Everyone must fall in line or be severely punished. Any information about the outside world or about anything is filtered though the government. You only know what they allow you to know, brainwashing you in the process. Can’t imagine a society like this? Think Nazi Germany or modern day North Korea. The idea of the United States transforming into a second coming of Nazi Germany sounds blasphemous at first, but when you take away free speech you open the door to endless possibilities of government control. Don’t just take it from me. Take it from perhaps the greatest president to ever take office, the honorable George Washington.

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Washington
"If freedom of speech is taken away," George Washington told a group of military officers in 1783, "then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."
This country was founded on the idea of free expression and the free exchange of ideas. That’s what’s so great about this country; that we’re all allowed to be so different and unique. That while others may criticize and mock our differences we still hold the right to be different. You’re allowed to not only think freely but act on your beliefs. Remember SOPA? A bill that could potentially send you to jail for years for posting a video of you dancing to a copyrighted song to Youtube, to say the least. Thanks to the protesting and support from major companies and brands such as Google, Yahoo!, and Mozilla as well as the backing of millions of people around the country, the bill was successfully shut down. It’s moments like these that we’re both relieved and excited to have the First Amendment on our side, but how can we embrace freedom of speech so much when it benefits our cause yet try to take it away when the cause isn’t one we agree with? It’s hypocritical and unjust. If we restrict free speech are we any different from the same British Empire that tyrannized and oppressed the settlers over 250 years ago? 250 years of progress erased because we couldn’t tolerate a few idiots from the Midwest. The identity of this country would be lost. They may be assholes, but they aren’t criminals. Free speech for everyone.

Sources:
http://civilliberty.about.com/od/fre...s-Timeline.htm
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/law?s=t


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Headliner
BULLY wins. BULLY's was a good debate that used many different historic examples to show the record of peaceful protests. Remember everyone, facts and evidence will always strengthen your debate. He could have went into a little more detail in certain areas, but as a whole it was a well rounded debate.

Makaveli was written fine, but he seemed to go too deep into this Pro-US type deal which hurt his debate. I wouldn't say it was off topic, but you could have choose a different, more straight to the point avenue to explore than this.

i$e
BULLY's was solid. Written pretty well and it was concise and to the point. I like the idea of offering an alternative view, and that came across well. The use of working examples was good backup, although the whole thing probably could have used a bit more detail.

Makaveli's read more as a glorification of America than it did a debate. 'This country was founded on the idea of free expression and the free exchange of ideas. That’s what’s so great about this country; that we’re all allowed to be so different and unique.' is at the level of parody, seriously. It's pretty well written on a technical level but it didn't really do anything for me that made me stack up and cheer in agreement.

Vote - BULLY

The Lady Killer
First and foremost, I'd like to point out that I was a bit miffed at the first debate not capitalizing proper nouns. Idk if it was laziness or typing from a phone or whatever, but it was a tad annoying, especially since the overall structure to your debate looked aesthetically pleasing. I dug the bolded parts for emphasis, but the lack of capitalization drove me slightly mad. Anyway, here we go.

BULLY - Despite the detail from my mini rant above, this was actually a very good debate. Like the second debate, it was founded on the First Amendment - Freedom of Speech. It took it a step further by highlighting the term "peaceably," something that apparently Westboro Church has been able to do despite their radical ideals. Just because we don't agree with something doesn't make it illegal. Touche. You provided good examples of successful peaceful protests throughout the country's history, but I felt that it didn't really tie back into the topic because your examples are typically heralded as "good deeds" whereas Westboro Church's actions are not. It does tie into the "peaceably" theme, though.

Makaveli - This debate was also centered upon the idea of free speech, but I felt it didn't necessarily focus on the actions of Westboro Church. I felt it was more of a broad diatribe on the First Amendment rather than the potential illegalization of Westboro's protesting of funerals.

Winner - BULLY


Winner via Unanimous Decision - BULLY


*The camera cuts into the crowd for "kiss cam" and zooms in on Anark and an unidentified female. Anark goes for it toungues and all and ends up knocking the "females" wig off. Anark stands back bemused and begins to ferociously wipe the "females" makeup off. Anark stands back even further this time and gasps as the "female" is revealed to be....

Spoiler for !!!!:
NOYK



TDL Social Division Title Tournament Semi Final
GothicBohemian vs SPCDRI

Is China's rapid economic growth sustainable over the long term?


Spoiler for Debates:
GothicBohemian
The "China Miracle”, a rapid economic growth spanning three decades, has changed the international economic landscape but is it sustainable? Right now, China is poised to overtake the world-leading US economy, China's largest export market, by 2019(5) yet there are clear signs that ultra-rapid Chinese economic growth is ending. This leads to the obvious question; can China's economy survive slowing in a faltering world economy?

Before we can predict future trends, we must understand China's emergence as an export powerhouse. Like post-WWII Japan before them, China followed a simple, but effective, combination of a low-cost manufacturing labour force assembling export products based largely on foreign designs and using imported materials coupled with a high domestic savings rate and under-valued currency (yuan), which gave exporters a competitive advantage in pricing(1). The result was a foreign consumer driven economy which sacrificed consumption in favour of investment and abandoned the service industry in favour of manufacturing(4).


(growth chart – The Economist.com)

With high trade surpluses, China was able to make smart overseas investments – particularly in foreign government securities(1). However, these investments are vulnerable to international economic slowdown, as is the mighty Chinese economy. Export orders began to fall in March, 2013, leaving China's overall growth at 7.7% in the first quarter, slightly short of the expected 8%(2). While either number outpaces current Western standards, this is a disappointing and troubling shortfall for Chinese investors and government - though it needs mention that this growth rate statistic is misleading – China doesn't compensate for leap years, and the addition of a single day could have changed the percentage to meet predictions(3).

More unexpectedly weak growth in May raised concerns about a further slide in the second quarter. 2012 saw China's slowest paced growth in 13 years and the trend appears to be continuing. Raw materials imports for manufacturing have dropped – showing signs of sluggish demand(9). To add more stress to an economy operating at its limits, China's credit rating dropped slightly, to A+, in April, 2013(6). A decrease in exports has forced China toward a more Westernized economic model; credit-driven investment, low interest rates and increased government spending, which has potential to lead them into a familiar trap of high government and personal debt coupled with growing budget deficits(1).

The necessitated credit expansion has resulted in a domestic investment boom, especially in property and infrastructure(1), but this carries risk. Large scale infrastructure projects, while they encourage economic growth and employment during the construction phase, do not yield high profits, yet they make up a large portion of Chinese bank loans. Many of these debts remain unpaid, which leaves the Chinese government potentially having to dip into the still large, but shrinking, savings pool to prop up a vulnerable, and shifting, banking system(1).

Where previously all saving was via state-owned banks lending primarily to State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) - protected by taxpayer bail-outs - there are now a variety of wealth-management products (WMPs), including bonds, trust companies and kerbside creditors(6), the so-called 'shadow banking' (any financing activity outside the banking system(12)). Only 55% of credit was bank lending as of February 2013(6) and in 2012 Chinese banks began extended more loans to the private sector as opposed to SOEs.


(China's changing credit - The Economist.com)

Yet, despite focus having been on disappointing growth, there were two bright spots; consumption, while still marginal compared to other powerful economies, outpaced investment for the first time since 2011 and services, while comparatively small – below the 55–60% of GDP seen in most developed economies(7) - have maintained the forefront over manufacturing in GDP contribution for the past three quarters – something not seen since the 1960s. The Chinese consumer has pushed their economy toward the more labour-intensive, service industry platform, resulting in higher wages, which in turn encourage spending in keeping with growing household incomes, further strengthening the service sector(4). Retail sales have increased by 13%(9), perhaps more if online purchasing is taken into account(9). The Chinese government continues to hold off on dropping interest rates, willing to allow the growth to slip as low as 7% before intervening, hoping to switch the economy to domestic consumption versus export-driven(4).

Can turning inward help China to ride out the global financial slowdown while still growing their economy? Not without changing the principles on which the “China miracle” was based. The pursuit of rapid and cost-effective production needs give way to quality over quantity. China's Gini coefficient (gap between rich and poor), once relatively small, exceeds the international warning level of 0.4, yet China has no proper unemployment insurance system(10). Taxation for services needs further simplification(4). Difficult, but necessary, decisions must be made with the treat of India creating their own cheap-labour “miracle” looming, but China seems ready to face the challenge.





References:
1 – Das, Satyajit, China must not follow Japanese path of growth and stagnation, The Independant (June 11, 2013)
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/bu...n-8654689.html

2 - Lynch, Russell, Chinese industry in shock slowdown as exports stall, The Independant (May 1, 2013)
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/bu...l-8599209.html

3 – S.C., China's slowdown: The 91st day, The Econimist (April 22, 2013)
http://www.economist.com/blogs/freee...0d4c3b12a5e227

4 – China’s economy: Speed isn’t everything, From Print edition (April 18, 2013)
http://www.economist.com/news/leader...0d4c3b12a5e227

5 – Rancho eclipse, Economist.com (June 6, 2013)
http://www.economist.com/blogs/graph...0d4c3b12a5e227

6 – Chinese credit rises. China’s credit rating falls, From Print Edition (April 13, 2013)
http://www.economist.com/news/china/...0d4c3b12a5e227

7 - Industrial eclipse, S.C., The Econimist (April 15, 2013)
http://www.economist.com/blogs/anale...0d4c3b12a5e227

8 - THE CHINA FACTOR - Booming Economy Tests World's Vital Signs (Worldwatch Institute, June 17, 2013)
http://www.worldwatch.org/china-fact...ds-vital-signs

9 – Chiang,Langi and Standing,Jonathan, China's economy stumbles in May, growth seen sliding in Q2 (Reuters, June 9, 2013)
http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/...9580GE20130609

10 - Jinming, Zhang, The negative effects of China's development model, China.org.cn, June 16, 2012
http://www.china.org.cn/opinion/2012...t_25658927.htm

11 – Morrison, Wayne M., China’s Economic Conditions, Congressional Research Service (June 26, 2012)
http://fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/194783.pdf

12 - `Steady Pickup' Seen in China Economic Growth – video, Bloomberg.com (May 28, 2013)
http://www.bloomberg.com/video/-stea...FWBRvBPEw.html

SPCDRI
No, China’s economic growth is not sustainable. China is a known and admitted liar about its economic data and non-Chinese sources all point to economic slowdown or even a recession in the upcoming years. China’s economy is burdened by loans, debts and bonds. The urbanization policies in China are fraudulent. Finally, China faces stiff competition from competitors in its chief strength, manufacturing.

On the first point, China’s own premier, Li Kequiang, admitted that China’s figures are “man-made” and not to be trusted. This was confirmed in Wikileaks cables. (1) 2012 saw political change and motivation to lie about indicators of economic growth, such as electricity consumption. Even when electricity consumption was down overall in China, Chinese sources reported that it was at the same levels or even mildly increased to save political face. Other data suggests that Chinese concrete usage was below expectations along with its electricity usage and has seen a more than 10 percent decrease in glass production and its building materials sector is 7 percent less profitable than it was in 2011. (2)

China just recently had a major solar company default on its loans and bonds, SunTech.
This will be the first of many. China is taking on debt faster than its GDP is growing and has more debt than GDP and this is a recipe for disaster. Stan Druckenmiller, a venture capitalist with impeccable credentials who recently worked for Soros Corp, has this to say about the debt situation: “In essence, the frantic stimulus China put together at the end of 2008 sowed the seeds of slower growth in the future by crowding out more productive investments. The system has enough leverage and misallocation of resources to warrant risks of a financial crisis…What we’ve seen in China since 2009 is similar to what happened in the US in 2005, in terms of credit growth outpacing economic growth.” (3)

China’s manufacturing and building materials woes are exemplified perfectly in the decade-old policy of mass urbanization and the construction of gigantic “Mega Cities” reminiscent of Judge Dredd comic books that the 55 percent rural and poor population of China simply cannot reach nor afford to live in. (4) These cities became investment opportunities that some estimate could be 20 to 30 percent of the entire Chinese economy. They have constructed a housing bubble as the U.S. did and all one has to do is wait for it to pop! (5)

This policy of debt-financed, government promoted infrastructure construction to boost the GDP, create a phony investment opportunity for Chinese citizens and goose Chinese economic figures is perfectly represented by the New South China Mall. The New South China Mall is more than twice as large as the largest mall in the United States, the Mall of America, and is by floor space the very largest mall in the world. It has all the bells and whistles from IMAX to on-location rollercoasters. However, the poor people in the Dongguang province cannot get to the mail or spend the money they don’t have there and the place is largely abandoned and termed a ‘ghost mall’ by the locals. Victor Teo, a professor at the University of Hong Kong agrees with my assessment: "To me, many of these projects are a result of easy access to capital and a combination of wishful thinking and speculative behavior rather than rational business calculations." "This mall is not the only one that is like that. Elsewhere in China there is the phenomenon of 'Ghost Towns', that is to say infrastructure projects, both residential and commercial, with no takers." (6)

2012 was a year in which China saw total direct foreign investment fall by 3.7 percent and overall investment fall by 13 percent. Other competitors in the manufacturing sector such as Indonesia, Taiwan and Vietnam are undercutting China and receiving money from Singapore and Japan that puts them in direct competition with China. Indonesia’s investment was up 27 percent and Thailand’s was up 63 percent. Other countries are simply doing it cheaper and better than China right now. (7) This nation is no longer the “World’s Factory Floor.” By 2015, rising Chinese labor costs will put their cost at par with U.S. businesses and others similar to the U.S. (8) The jobs that will not go to South-East Asia will just remain in countries like the U.S.

All of these signs point to a rough economic road ahead for China as they take on more and more debt to inflate a soon-to-burst “Ghost Town” housing bubble and globally cede ground in manufacturing.

Sources:

Sources:

1. ‘Lies, Damned Lies and Chinese Statistics’
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/article...ese_statistics
2. ‘Chinese Data Is Looking Horrible, And The Government Is Lying About It’
http://www.businessinsider.com/horri...ic-data-2012-6
3. ‘Stanley Druckenmiller On China's Future And Investing In The New Normal’ http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-0...ing-new-normal
4. ‘Rural Poverty in China’
http://www.ruralpovertyportal.org/co...ome/tags/china
5. ‘China Building Mega Cities But They Remain Empty Ghost Towns’http://www.news.com.au/business/chin...-1226611169281
6. ‘World’s Biggest Mall A China Ghost Town’
http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/03/busine...all/index.html
7. ‘China Loses Edge As World’s Factory Floor.”
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...751969774.html
8. ‘U.S. Manufacturing No More Expensive Than Outsourcing To China By 2015: Study’
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/0...n_3116638.html


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
i$e
GothicBohemian did a good job of writing it all out, providing a nice structure, lots of facts and all that. Problem is, there's no real debate here, it just reads like the findings of a study or something, and I felt as though the conclusion was pretty inconclusive. It was pretty safe, you know.

SPCDRI on the other hand comes with a more aggressive approach, which whilst containing less overall facts, hit harder with what was there, telling me clearly which side of the argument they were siding with. It's equally as well written, and yeah a much better fit for what I look for in a debate.

Vote - SPCDRI

Headliner
SPCDRI wins.

GothciBohemian's felt like a class lecture. It was mildly difficult to read because it was a bunch of facts without much of an opinion. It was also confusing because there was no definitive answer from you in regards to your stance on this matter. I'd probably have to read it again to get the full idea of what you were trying to do..................but I'm not going to do that shit.

SPCDRI wins on default, but it was also a good, strong debate. He identified his stance, explained why he felt that way, then used facts to back up his argument. Then at the end he used all his factual evidence to round up a good conclusion.

The Lady Killer
This was an interesting debate - I studied Economics in college and was very excited about this topic. That being said, I felt the outcome was a bit lopsided.

GothciBohemian - I read this over fairly carefully and I still am not sure which stance you took on the topic. I felt in one sentence you were saying there was an impending slowdown and China couldn't keep it up, yet the next sentence you claim that it's possible if they make some good decisions. This doesn't bode well for the gift of persuasion. I also felt like I was reading an Economics book. You rattled off a bunch of facts, which is nice, but didn't really add any of your own substance or ideas to it.

SPCDRI - This is how it's done. Clear stance from the get-go, and support given by facts and your own convictions. I felt you structured your debate nicely. Intro paragraph had your stance and a nice thesis outlining what your supporting factors would be. Then you spend a few paragraphs discussing each of these factors. Very nicely done. Solid effort here.

Winner - SPCDRI


Winner via Unanimous Decision - SPCDRI


*Shepard is backstage with THE DARK ANDRE*

Shepard: Andre, can I get a quick word ahead of the first TDL Title match?

THE DARK ANDRE:

TDL Wrestling Division Title Tournament Semi Final
greendayedgehead vs wrestling_junkie

Are fans cheering Dolph Ziggler as a heel helping or hurting him?


Spoiler for Debates:
greendayedgehead

Considering Dolph Ziggler is World Heavyweight Champion at the time of writing, the positive reactions he’s experienced during this part of his career clearly haven’t done much of anything to hinder his progression. Special consideration must also be given to the fact that WWE decided to keep him champion, despite him suffering a concussion early into his reign, forcing a six week break that meant WWE were more than in their rights to strip him of the title should they have been inclined to do so. As the decision makers in Ziggler’s career, WWE have the biggest say in whether he is ‘helped’ or ‘hurt’ by anything, fan reactions included.

That’s not to say Ziggler has reached the peak of the company. He’s fairly new to the main event scene, and only a WWE title run, or a feud with a part timer would elevate him to that higher level. But it’s clearly not the presence of positive fan reactions holding WWE from giving Ziggler that push to the very top – that much can be seen from looking at his colleague CM Punk. He is the company’s top heel, but he’s no stranger to being cheered as a heel. Punk has fans everywhere, but pockets of ‘smark’ cities sometimes cause his pops to be as loud or louder than the babyface he’s going against. His 434 day WWE title reign and programs with legends like Rock and Undertaker make it evident that the cheers didn't hurt Punk one bit, and did not hold him back from taking a place at the very top of the company.

Any kind of noise lets WWE know that they are making money from you, either because of the fan that loves you and buys a ticket or PPV to see you kick some ass, or because of the fan that hates you and wants to see your ass get kicked. This is why WWE don’t seem to discriminate between kinds of reactions – they’re here to get cash by any means possible. That includes sacrificing Fandango’s white hot mean streak that saw him get massive heat, once they caught on to his theme music gaining popularity on the internet. WWE had him pander to the fans, opening up the possibility of a face turn if there was money in it. The fad didn’t take, and Fandango was soon back to his heelish ways, but this incident serves to demonstrate exactly where WWE’s priorities are, and why ‘heel heat’ is not much more than a non-issue to them.

Some old school wrestling fans believe a heel is useless if he can’t get heat, or worse, draws cheers. Those fans might look to blame Ziggler for his shortcomings, but Ziggler is just one example of a growing problem that the entire professional wrestling industry is facing. The scripted nature of professional wrestling becoming common knowledge means the traditional bad guy is at risk of developing a fanbase. Professional wrestlers have appeal that is innate, and to tell fans to stop showing their appreciation for someone they have a lot of admiration for is a very hard task that isn’t always solved by having them “be more heelish”. CM Punk’s vicious attack on The Undertaker is a recent, baffling example of this. Fans continued to chant Punk’s name as he attacked Undertaker from behind with an urn containing the ashes of his kayfabe dead father, and the chants continued for their Wrestlemania match a week later. Even a heel that does something as heinous as that can get positive reactions, so this can’t be pinned on one wrestler’s perceived weakness. What’s more in Ziggler’s case is he rarely commits acts that can provoke true ire, and he recently took to twitter to air his frustrations at the fact. It’s difficult to draw heat when creative don’t give you much to work with, and their sometimes lack of effort should not be used to paint a wrestler in a negative light.

WWE are used to telling the story that they want to tell, which means they often overlook things like giving fans actual reason to cheer or boo, as long as the talent they respect are being used in the way they believe is best. Ziggler’s impressive wrestling ability and constantly improving mic work have given him the spot on the upper card, and showed that his career has not been hurt by fans cheering him, but instead has opened up new avenues that may not have been considered for him.



The Wrestling Junkie

‘Any publicity is good publicity’ is a famous quote thas has been said countless times over the years, because with any publicity, comes more notice and exposure. And that is no different with Dolph Ziggler, in which I would like to use a quote ‘Any reaction, is a good reaction’ especially in todays WWE product.

If you look at todays WWE, you will notice that there are a select few in todays WWE that the crowd really respond to and that is full-time names like John Cena, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Daniel Bryan, and CM Punk. While there are guys in the roster who have found it hard to gain any reaction such as Cesaro, Barrett, Del Rio, and Jack Swagger. What is most interesting and effective about Ziggler is that regardless of his allignment as a heel, the crowd in our current product just cheer for who they begin to like – and this can only improve Zigglers career in the long-run because you now have the crowd taking notice of that character, in which not only benefits Zigglers career because he is now getting a reaction, but it benefits WWE because they can now begin to use Ziggler momentum to transform him into a babyface, or push Ziggler as a top heel by using his positive crowd reaction to their leverage to try and work the crowd against him to garner a strong heel reaction.

Ultimately if you’re a heel – you want a heel reaction, but in shows like Smackdown, this can easily be corrected because its pre-taped on a tuesday so they can force the desired reaction in what-ever WWE wants the crowd to be like. But lets look at this the other side, if you’re a new fan and your watching the product especially a guy like Dolph Ziggler who is the World Champion of the industry – shouldn’t you be watching and thinking ‘Wow, this guy means something’ and that’s exactly why the night that Dolph Ziggler won the World title 4/8/13 edition of RAW is a prime example – it helped elevate Ziggler even more because once that show ended, not only were we talking about how awesome the crowd was but we were talking about the reaction Ziggler got when he won the world title and that leads me back to ‘Any reaction, is a good reaction’ because instantly now you have a guy like Ziggler – regardless of him being heel, but you now have the attention of the crowd to try and get this guy over. That means the crowd are going to be invested in what-ever they do with him, whether he goes down the path as a full-fledge, vile and despicable villian or he makes the transition into a face.

Source to Dolph Ziggler World Title win: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3bYIn-YS_Q0

Lets take a look back to CM Punk back in 2011 dubbed ‘Summer of Punk’ in which he cut the famous pipebomb promo which captulated many current and former viewers. This guy started to get the best reaction possible, and that was as a heel – so what did WWE do? The most logical answer to this was to take this guy and turn him into a babyface, because the crowd wanted to cheer for this guy. And that is the great thing about Dolph Ziggler, the crowd want to cheer for him – so it makes it that much easier for a guy like Ziggler to transition into a babyface compared to the other side of the spectrum with a guy like Alberto Del Rio. Lets remember that Dolph Ziggler has been a heel since he re-debuted in 2009 under the Ziggler gimmick, and now we are in 2013 – that is a great amount of time for an individual to be experminted as a heel, and maybe these positive reactions just show that Ziggler career moving forward is destined to take him to stardom as a face. Because lets look as Del Rio when he was a heel, he was dubbed ‘Alberto no heato’ and with the amount of despicable actions that he done, the crowd just were not invested into him. And once the face turn came, the same lackluster reception followed him. This is really an important evidence to why Ziggler being cheered is helping his career, because it leaves Ziggler with more options rather than being stuck as someone who is one-dimensional because even the best heels like Edge, Jericho, Punk, Orton, HHH had their face turns so this once again adds paint to the picture as to why the crowd cheering Ziggler is helping him, because now he has the crowds attention, its time for him to ‘show the world’ what he can do and use his popularity to his advantage to go down the heel or face route.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Headliner
Both debates were quite similar. I give the edge to greendayedgehead.

The Wrestling Junkie lost me when he said:
Quote:
Ultimately if you’re a heel – you want a heel reaction, but in shows like Smackdown, this can easily be corrected because its pre-taped on a tuesday so they can force the desired reaction in what-ever WWE wants the crowd to be like.
Very confusing and I didn't see how it helped your argument.

There were a few spelling mistakes as well. Makes sure you use spell check at all times.

The Lady Killer
Both debates basically treaded along the same route by claiming that "any reaction is a good reaction," then adding a few examples of people (CM Punk) who have paved a similar path. When debates are this similar I typically reread them both to see which debates flows better, as fluidity allows me to process the point much easier, adding to the ease of persuasion. I felt the opening and ending lines to the first debates were very solid. Set the tone and stance early, and wrapped it up the same way it began. I also felt the first debate flowed better, as I had to pause and reread a few of the lines in the second debate. Both used very convincing examples, and the second debate shouldn't feel bad in defeat. I would suggest rereading your debate a few times, though, to clean up spelling/grammar/flow.

Winner - greendayedgehead

Seabs
greendayedgehead - Really good debate. Structured very well to make it real easy to read and follow. Comparisons to Punk and Fandango I thought were very on point and impressive. Addressed the counter argument that heels aren’t doing their job if they don’t get heel heat nicely. Personally, I lean towards the side that if a wrestler is good enough to main event in WWE then they should be able to draw heel and face heat when needed but your point about the changing culture of modern pro wrestling fans is bang on the money. Comparison again to Punk and the fans still cheering him because they like the wrestler regardless of the despicable acts against a big fan favourite like Undertaker was great too. Anytime you can argue against a point that I believe in but still come out of with me thinking you made more than valid points is the sign of a really good debate. Would have liked you to have addressed the role of the crowds a little more and how their actions rather than the wrestlers action can affect how someone like Ziggler can be perceived backstage and if they have a duty of sorts to support a heel that they like by giving them the reaction they seek, especially someone like Ziggler looking to move up to the top of the card. Obviously with word count restrictions though some points have to be omitted and there wasn’t much if anything I would have omitted from this to make room for a different point. Plus you addressed how the booking team hasn’t give Ziggler the best opportunity to attract big heel heat nicely.

The Wrestling Junkie - Really good debate again. Couple of grammatical errors that start to stand out once they start to repeat themselves that can devalue your debate. Stuff like Zigglers --> Ziggler’s for example. Just keep an eye on them. There’s a couple of lines you use here that I thought were great and allowed you to show a little personality within your debate which I always think a massive plus to be able to do. ‘Any reaction, is a good reaction’ I really liked and was an even better line to build your debate around. Play on words with “show the world” was neat too. Your point about the crowd reactions to him helping push through a big babyface turn for him was great and I guess the turn at Payback only validates that point more. Should point out that I haven’t factored the babyface turn into my judging of each debate. Glad I did this debate here and didn’t wait for another show to use it though. Comparison to Punk was also good but I thought A did a slightly better job of the Ziggler-Punk comparison to support their argument.

Two really good debates with very little between the two. Giving the edge just ever so slightly to greendayedgehead because I thought they expressed their points slightly better and supported their argument slightly better. Key word being slightly.

Winner - greendayedgehead


Winner via Unanimous Decision - greendayedgehead


TDL Wrestling Division Title Tournament Semi Final
Evolution vs adrian_zombo

Argue for or against the WWE and World Heavyweight Championship's being unified.


Spoiler for Debates:
Evolution

“WWE should unite the WWE and World Heavyweight titles!” is a comment (with grammatical variations) that is seen almost weekly on this forum and I for one am sick of it. It’s a ridiculous idea that people spout who have absolutely no recognition or understanding of how the structure of the WWE’s show and roster alike is presented or executed. Not to mention that it’s been done before in the past.

I could not disagree with the idea of unifying the titles more for a number of reasons;

The biggest pitfall of the idea to unify the main event titles becomes apparent when you watch more than one show of Smackdown or Raw concurrently. It doesn’t take an overly brilliant wrestling mind to see that there is a clear separation between the main event stars and the mid-carders, not only in the way they are presented on the show, but the ring and (most importantly) promo time they are given on a weekly basis. It also doesn’t take a brilliant wrestling mind to see that there is also a clear separation between the WWE and WHC titles, a separation that has become more apparent within the last few years.

The WHC is actually becoming more and more important as it gradually becomes further separated from the perceived kayfabe caliber of the WWE title. It’s beginning to serve a purpose as a springboard for the mid-carders to move towards the main event and gives a more credible reign to a wrestler than a mid-card title would. I think the best, most recent example of this is Dolph Ziggler; someone who has been flirting with the upper card for a good while now who most would consider ready for a serious title reign.

Now imagine Ziggler in the same scenario if they merged the WWE and WHC titles; you’ve got Ziggler competing against the likes of JAAAAWWN CEEENAAARRRGGGHHH!, CM Punk and Rob Van Goldber-I mean Ryback just to name a few. All of a sudden it’s more difficult for him to prove himself as a credible titleholder when it’s extremely unlikely that he would even GET a title reign in the first place in an area that is brimming with over-protected and established superstars.

Another perfect example: Daniel Bryan last year. His reign from start to it’s unceremonious finish is what put him in the strong position of relevance with the crowd, which in turn helped him get to where he is today; potentially moving towards a WWE title reign in the coming year. Do you think Daniel Bryan would of gotten a near-four month WWE title reign under the same circumstances last year? Unlikely.

Yet people still support the idea of merging them? Ridiculous.

The counter-argument to this is an obvious “if the WWE book them carefully enough they could establish them all the same in the WWE title picture too”, to which I will respectfully, yet bluntly rebut with a simple question. When was the last time the WWE consistently booked someone correctly anywhere on the card let alone someone looking to make the move to the WWE title picture?

The WWE title is the most treasured and generally protected title on their show. There is usually only a very select few on the roster that consistently compete for it and “new” holders don’t come along very frequently. If the bookers and more specifically Vince are hesitant to give new title reigns to wrestlers who haven’t proven themselves in the past, what does the title merge do for them? How are they rewarded? An Intercontinental title reign? Please. It does nobody any justice to merge the titles at this point in the WWE.

Sure, we all love a good title vs. title match and we love seeing someone carrying two belts but if the WWE were to merge the two biggest titles on the show again (don’t forget that it has been done before) what happens after they are merged? How much work is going to have to be done to repair the mid card titles and bring them into exactly the same relevance that the WHC is in now so that the shows have balance again? It’s a counter productive exercise from start to finish.

I’m not ruling out in the future that it may happen, but for the time being, with the product how it is now in 2013 and the way the wrestlers are booked in the main event, the mid-card and the under-card, in terms of the balance of the show and the opportunity it provides to wrestlers that deserve to be rewarded with a title reign that is more important than a hot potato, unappreciated ‘mid-card’ title; the WWE Championship and World Heavyweight Championship should not be merged at this point in time.


adrian_zombo

The WWE and World Heavyweight Championships should be unified, especially since there is no longer a distinction between the SmackDown and Raw brands.(1) Returning to one major title allows the WWE to legitimize the greatness of its champions, increases the gravitas of title changes, and provides a wider breadth of storyline opportunities moving forward.

Recently, there have been way too many world champions to keep track of. In the last five years alone, the WWE Championship has been held by 13 different guys, while the World Heavyweight Championship has been held by 18 different guys.(2) Titleholders used to be a rare breed in the WWF, a veritable who’s who of megastars. Indeed, the list of champions from the last few years has a handful of megastars, but their radiance is diminished by the copious company of so many lesser stars.

The sheer number of these smaller stars holding a major title lessens the overall significance of a belt. When guys like Swagger, Ziggler or Kane lose a title, fall back to the midcard and lose every week because they’re “cowardly bad guys”, it’s not exactly a ringing endorsement for the new champion that beat them. Champions should be a tiny, exclusive circle of the very best, not a wide, inclusive circle of the very good. That way, when someone is able to smash through that barrier and join that circle, he becomes a true star for life.

What about being able to award guys a belt who put in years of service? Having a secondary belt put around the waists of guys like Mark Henry and Christian surely had meaning for those individuals and their fans, but imagine how much more profound that significance would become if they were crowned as the company’s solitary champion. No longer would this accomplishment enable the superstar to be one of the company’s champs, but any individual crowned champion would be the face of WWE’s best.

Some argue that unifying the titles will magically increase the prestige of the championship. Prestige increases only as much as the title is made the centerpiece of a major storyline, given the most TV time, and goes on last on PPV. There are some exceptions to this rule, such as an Undertaker Streak match at Wrestlemania, the Royal Rumble match, and arguably even the return of a box office draw who’s become an even bigger star outside of wrestling. During Punk’s lengthy reign, there was a stretch of 8 consecutive PPVs where the WWE title did not go on last.(3) This type of booking prevents any prestige increase for one major title, let alone two of them. With two belts, one is always bound to feel less important. It is best if one belt becomes the clear-cut focal point of the WWE.

A legitimate fear when discussing the unification of the world titles is how many superstars are going to be stuck drifting without direction in the upper midcard. With two belts currently, we’re treated to a seemingly endless rotation of directionless feuds involving guys like Big Show, Orton, Henry, and Swagger without a title on the line. Take one belt away, and hypothetically you get more superstars added to the mix of non-title feuds where seemingly nothing is at stake. However, this is an opportunity to revitalize other titles. Have upper tier guys not in the world title picture pursue the Intercontinental Title. Re-establish its significance by having major players chase the belt. Have guys form actual, lasting tag teams and go after the tag titles together, which would have a similar revitalizing effect. Jericho and Benoit or HHH and Austin weren’t above striving for tag team dominance. No one should be. Have a group of like-minded individuals form a stable together, giving them a united purpose. The Radicalz created a buzz long before any of them held a major WWE title. The Shield has that buzz now without a world title. Contrary to the majority of WWE’s current programming beliefs, guys don’t have to be chasing a world title or fighting John Cena to provide compelling television.

To be the world’s best in any given field, one must presumably reach the pinnacle in that area. Two world titles create two pinnacles, diminishing the significance of each. The two WWE brands merged in August of 2011, enabling any wrestler and title to appear on any show. One roster should have one champion. No major sport allows its second-best team or competitor to hold the title of World Champion. Ultimately, the product would not suffer should the two major titles become unified. Instead, a single title makes title changes truly important again, creates diverse storyline opportunities for others, and brings an amount of prestige, legitimacy and gravitas to the titleholder that today’s WWE is sorely lacking.

FOOTNOTES:

1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDqOTx1i4Es - HHH’s announcement of supershows beginning; a SmackDown announcement later followed.

2: WWE Championship Titleholders since June 2008: HHH, Jeff Hardy, Edge, Randy Orton, John Cena, Sheamus, Batista, Rey Mysterio, The Miz, Alberto Del Rio, CM Punk and The Rock. World Heavyweight Championship Titleholders since June 2008: Edge, CM Punk, Batista, Big Show, Sheamus, Daniel Bryan, Randy Orton, Christian, John Cena, Jeff Hardy, Undertaker, Rey Mysterio, Jack Swagger, Chris Jericho, Kane, Dolph Ziggler, Mark Henry, and Alberto Del Rio. Source: Wikipedia.

3: TLC 2011, the last PPV before that stretch featured Punk in the main event, as Cena was not on the card. Night of Champions 2012, when this streak ended, featured Punk vs Cena. Some of these main events during the streak included Cena vs Kane (Elimination Chamber 2012), Cena vs Laurinaitis (Over the Limit 2012), Cena vs Big Show (No Way Out 2012) and Cena winning the Money in the Bank match (Money In The Bank 2012). Source: www.com.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
Seabs
Evolution - Triffic debate. Initially my stance on the topic was to unify them but this debate might have made me change my stance, at the very least consider the opposing side much stronger. Now that’s impressive. Intro is brilliant. Not only sets your debate up perfectly but does it with PASSION. All your points to support your argument are great and expressed brilliantly. I especially liked how you took the wide belief that the WHC being devalued is all bad and used it in a positive light to support its worth and your argument. Examples to back up your point were on the money too. Biggest negative about your debate is that the final paragraph is one long sentence and becomes a chore to read once you near the end. On a much lesser scale too you mention how the two big titles have been merged before (twice in fact) but then never actually use this to support your argument. Instead you just sort of mention them in passing.

adrian_zombo - Another one of the best wrestling debates to date. On my first initial read of both debates I thought the two were really close but on second read I noticed a couple of points in this one that weren’t as tight as they seemed on first read. A large part of your argument is based around merging them to re-establish the legitimacy of a world title which is good. However, you then discredit that point a little by mentioning how a more credible world title would make a “thank you reign” for a guy like Henry or Christian mean more. Wouldn’t handing out “thank you reigns” damage the credibility of the title though? Then you also make the point how “there was a stretch of 8 consecutive PPVs where the WWE title did not go on last”. If a world title can’t main event when there’s 2 of them then there isn’t there statistically less chance when there’s only one of them? If Cena main events with or without the title then does it really matter how many world titles there are if Cena doesn’t hold one of them? If you limit the chance of Cena holding a world title then by your point you also limit the chances of the world title main eventing. Your points are definitely good btw but I thought you hurt your own argument a little when them points. You end very strong though. I liked how you actually used an example of how the booking could benefit from less wrestlers in title programs. I think in the other unification debate someone brought up a similar point but also criticised the creativity of the booking team in the same debate. Making your point and then using an example and/or putting it into some form of context makes your point a lot stronger. Your closing paragraph is your strongest for me. I would have cut the Henry/Christian paragraph and expanded more on the idiocy of multiple pinnacles.

Fantastic tie. Best match in the wrestling division so far for me.

Winner - Evolution

Headliner
adrian_zombo wins. This debate owned from start to finish. Everything he said was legit both opinion wise and factually. adrian_zombo also did the best job of shutting down any counter argument.

Evolution's was a solid debate, but there was too much room for counter argument. You made many references to the World title being an important stepping stone to the WWE title and how being made IC Champion would do nothing. But anybody who knows history would tell you that the IC title was the number 2 title in the company from the 80's on to the intro of the World title, and in many aspects the IC title served the exact same purpose as the current World title. Savage, Hart, HBK, Austin, Rock, Triple H, RVD, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Jericho all became WWE Champions and in most cases it was because the IC title prepared them for the next step.

So what's the difference in the World title being the number 2 title to the IC title being number 2? The credibility of championships can always be rebuilt.

(See how I just easily did a counter argument)

The Lady Killer
Strong debates, as I expected. I like that each took a different stance, as it enables me to really see which way I lean after I have read both. Who is more persuasive? Let's find out...

Evolution - Took the anti-unification stance and drove it home with the WHC's current status as almost a midcard belt/stepping stone and the protected booking of WWE title contenders as support. This was strong. Really enjoyed the passion and conviction in your argument from the outset. Came across as though you truly believed what you were arguing. That's always good.

adrian_zombo - Took the opposite approach, and was equally convincing. This is gonna be tough. You used the end of the brand split as support for your claim, and drove home the prestige of the titles losing steam when so many guys who are "below" the belts are winning them.

"Champions should be a tiny, exclusive circle of the very best, not a wide, inclusive circle of the very good."

Very good. After this, however, I think you started to sway from the topic a bit. It was almost as if you were answering the question "How should WWE revitalize its titles?" You began discussing a bunch of rhetorical "what if?" scenarios about what the WWE should be doing to return some prestige to the titles, and not so much why the WWE should unify the two main titles. I think in a roundabout way you were trying to support your original claim, but the debate felt a little disjointed to me by the end. Still, a solid effort worthy of praise.


Winner - Evolution


Winner via Split Decision - Evolution


*Backstage Joel & redead appear to be arguing with Tony Tornado*

Joel: You said you had a fucking formlula Tony! Fool proof you said! Fool proof!

*Joel & redead back Tony into a corner on the balcony*

redead: I'm gonna kill ya!

Joel: Woah.

*In a suddent twist, Tony Tornado pulls a knife on Joel & redead. Joel & redead both panic before a loud shout of "MOVE" can be heard*

*Out of nowhere MoveMent charges at Tony Tornado and lariats him over the balcony to the concret floor, meeting his grizzly death"

MoveMent: MENT

*MoveMent strolls off without a care in the world*

Joel:

TDL Sports Division Title Match
THE DARK ANDRE VS Perfect Poster

Should sports teams be expected to always start their strongest teams?


Spoiler for Debates:
THE DARK ANDRE
"Should sports teams be expected to always start their strongest teams"? No, not at all, because the concept is unrealistic and based on pre-set judgements that can change from game to game due to altering circumstances.

First of all let me concentrate on a key word. “Always” suggests that the argument for teams having to play their strongest side requires a complete and utter lack of flexibility in regards to available options. “Strongest team” would suggest the inclusion of all of the best players in every match, based on that you would have to assume that the coaches of all sports teams should have a complete lack of flexibility in regards to team selection when all of their players are fit and available. If even just one position in a sport’s team was available and used for regular rotation then that would negate the concept of clubs having to “always start their strongest teams”.

Squad rotation is involved in most sports because players sometimes need rests due to mental and or physical fatigue, even when they’re not medically injured. Often a superior and fit but less than completely match sharp player can be replaced in a game against greatly inferior opposition because the replacement will be good enough to compete against the weaker side, this way the superior player can be given time to recover full fitness for matches against sterner opposition. Sometimes reserve players aren’t even much worse than the first choice in their position. It would be naïve to use the best possible players for every match if it meant needlessly using them all in games where they weren’t needed, it could even cause them to become less effective in far more important games against sterner opposition. ACT Brumbies’ super rugby team winger Robbie Coleman summed up and supported this concept up perfectly when stating “We want to win the comp this year so if it means resting players so they're fresh … then we've got to do what's best for the team.''

Another problem with the concept of the “strongest team” is that it’s based on individual opinions and not outright facts. Different coaches, pundits and fans have different views of what is their club’s “strongest side”. One coach might not even be completely sure what his strongest team is. As an example, Manchester United’s 2012/2013 premier league winning side featured twenty one players who started in the league eight times (at least 20% of all league games) or more. United won the league but didn’t always field their “strongest” players. A lot of Ferguson’s team selections were based on his desire to develop the younger players in his squad who look like they could eventually go on to collectively become a great future side in their own right. If the strongest team is always going to be used then how can the younger unproven players with great potential ever get a proper chance?

Different tactics and players are sometimes needed for different types of opposition, therefore there isn’t always going to be a clear cut strongest team that can be chosen. You could argue that in those scenarios the best team is always theoretically being used for the correct situation, but tactics don’t always work and are based on an individual coach's philosophies. What one coach might consider the best team and tactical approach for a match might be deemed inadequate by another. How can the deployment of these supposedly strongest teams always be expected when so many tactical and philosophical variables are involved in most sports? The short answer is that they can’t.

It can also be detrimental to consistently use the so called “strongest team” because those players within that select side could become complacent if they know that they won’t be dropped. The form of a sport’s team’s strongest players can drop off even when fully fit. If individual players aren’t playing well enough then the use of reserves should be encouraged, even if the reserves are clearly inferior based on attributes outside of motivation and confidence. Not only can this help the team in the short term through temporarily heightened team work but this can also help to motivate the underperforming “star players”. The rigid use of the best available players would deny a coach the ability to man manage and motivate his players through rotation. A good example of decreasing motivation through consistent play was given by Cricket team Chennai Super Kings’ skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni who suggested that his team became “complacent” after a seven match win streak which ended with an embarrassing defeat, this is evidence that even highly consistent quality sports players sometimes need resting and replacing, if only temporarily.

There has been widespread condemnation of sports teams fielding what are essentially complete reserve sides in sports games, examples of this being Wolves reserves versus Manchester United, Blackpool reserves vs Aston Villa and San Antonio Spurs weakened side vs Miami heat. Fielding a completely weakened team is not in the spirit of sporting competition. However, there is a more than subtle difference between sending out completely weakened sides and partially experimental sides which aren’t quite on par with what could be considered a “strongest team”.

Another argument for fielding strong sides is fan consideration, but this point is eradicated when you consider the idea that fans could potentially pay lots of money to see a team that has been ravaged by injuries like Newcastle United last winter, or freak accidents like when Tottenham FC’s first team suffered food poisoning in 2006, therefore fans can’t justify protests over paying to watch weakened teams because that’s a standard part of following a sports side. Regardless, true fan support involves acceptance of all active team members, not just the better or far more popular ones.

It would be ridiculous to expect sports teams to always field their strongest teams due the consideration of varying player judgements, tactics, fitness levels, motivation levels and long term plans involving future players.







Robbie Coleman on squad rotation:

http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-union/un...409-2hjs6.html

Manchester United’s squad stats for premier league appearances 2012/2013:

http://www.soccerbase.com/teams/team...teamTabs=stats

Dhoni on player complacency:

http://blogs.bettor.com/MS-Dhoni-adm...Update-a215123

Wolves reserves vs Manchester United:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/foot...em/8408337.stm

Wolves fined for fielding complete reserve side:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/foot...rs/8521603.stm

Aston Villa vs Blackpool reserves:

http://www.football.co.uk/blackpool/...s1502151.shtml

How San Antonio Spurs were fined for fielding a reserve side:

http://www.lawinsport.com/articles/r...ll-and-the-nba

Newcastle United FC injury crisis:

http://www.faniq.com/blog/Stars-play...sis-Blog-60328

Tottenham Hotspur FC suffer widespread food poisoning:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/foo...poisoning.html

Perfect Poster
In sports, no matter which one you play, the objective in the game is simple – win. Whether you are just playing for your first time or your last time, you're going to try to win. For the guys running the show, though, it's not nearly as black and white of a situation. You can't think about the short term and the next game. You have to look towards the future and make sure you can keep churning out a winning product as often as you can. While fans may not appreciate tanking or resting their starters, sometimes it is in a teams best interest to NOT play their strongest teams.

Teams shouldn't always be expected to start their strongest teams because sometimes their strongest teams aren't very good. Take the 2002-03 Cleveland Cavaliers, for example. They were a middling franchise for the 4 seasons before that one. They weren't historically awful, but they were always lottery bound. During that year it was widely speculated that top prospect LeBron James would declare entry for the draft out of High School. James was being touted as a once in a generation prospect, someone with the potential to be a top 5 player in the history of the sport. Cleveland, knowing this, traded Andre Miller, Wesley Person, and Lamond Murray during the summer/fall before the 2002-03 season. Their top 3 players in minutes played for the 2001-02 season – all gone. Why did they do this? Because they knew these guys wouldn't be the leaders of the next Cavaliers contender, and the worse they do in 2002-03, the better chance they had to get Lebron. Eventually, the Cavs bottomed out with the worst record in the league, won the lottery, and were able to draft Lebron. After two non playoff years while they were still building the roster around him, they made the playoffs for 5 straight years, winning at least 1 playoff series each year and even reaching the 2007 NBA Finals, the farthest a Cavaliers team had ever gone. Had the Cavs elected to keep their top 3 players in minutes played from the 2001-02 season, it's highly likely they wouldn't have earned the top overall pick. Thus, they would've gotten no Lebron, and likely would've ended up with a mid lottery pick, where the chances of getting a top talent aren't as high.

The Cavaliers aren't the only team that has been able to effectively tank and reap the benefits from it. Let's look at the Washington Nationals. In the final week of the 2008 season, the Nationals were 1 game behind the Seattle Mariners for the worst record in the league. The widely expected #1 pick in next years draft was pitching phenom Stephen Strasburg, who was gracing the covers of Sports Illustrated while still in college. The Nationals, having nothing to play for, got swept in their last 3 games to result in a 59-102 record. The Mariners, meanwhile, won all 3 of their final games to leave their record at 61-101. The Nationals drafted Strasburg the following summer and he has already payed dividends, being an all-star last year and helping lead them to their first playoff appearance since moving to Washington. Seattle, meanwhile, selected Dustin Ackley with the #2 pick. Ackley made his way up to the majors rather quickly, but he struggled while he was there and recently was sent back down to AAA. Now tell me, did it really pay off for the Mariners to win those last 3 games in 2008 so that they couldn't get Strasburg? Instead of having potentially the best 1-2 pitching rotation with him and Felix Hernandez, the Mariners selected another hitter that couldn't hit and really haven't been close to making the postseason since then. While there were many incompetent decisions that have lead to their futility, playing to win and sweeping the A's in a meaningless final series of the season was the tip of the iceberg.

These are just two examples of teams 'tanking' or 'not putting their best team on the field' that worked out quite well. There's numerous other examples, such as the Spurs tanking for Tim Duncan, the Colts sucking for Andrew Luck, etc.

Sometimes, teams don't even tank for better draft position, but because they are looking further down the road and realize that winning a singular game isn't going to make or break their season. MLB is the perfect example of not always putting your best team on the field. MLB teams always try to find a way to give their positional starters rest once or twice a week, and most starting pitchers don't make more than 1/5 of their teams starts all year. Teams realize that they can't put out their best pitcher in 160 games because that would wear him down right away and the body isn't built to handle that much stress. Even the NBA and NFL are like that to an extent, resting starters after they've clinched a playoff spot to save some blows for them in the playoffs instead of meaningless late regular season games. Look on basically any team that has had a playoff spot locked up in the last 10 years and you'll see that, more often than not, those starters are not playing a full games worth of minutes, or possibly not at all.

Overall, while we would always love to see teams bring out their best team, they shouldn't be expected to. Teams that are eliminated or that have already clinched playoff spots really don't have much to play for and, in the long run, would be better off not playing their best players. Sports aren't played in a one season vacuum. Because of that, management always has to be looking at what is best for not only now, but the future as well. Sometimes not sending out their best team is in that teams best interest.


Spoiler for Judging Cards:
i$e
Two interesting takes on it, since I'd have thought the question pertains more to the respect side of things.

Yeah so both are obviously really well written. THE DARK ANDRE comes hard with a great opener highlighting the logical fallacy of the question, before attacking carefully all the various interpretations of the question. A well rounded approach that has a good balance between debating and fact-citing.

Perfect Poster is more technical, breaking down examples to the finer details in a variety of sports. I feel as though the narrative got lost a little amongst that, with long periods of explaining the history of a case study between the pertaining arc of your stance. It's very articulate and eventually convincing, though.

Vote - tough one, but Perfect Poster.

Seabs
Good golly miss molly. 1st title match and a very high standard set for future title matches. Fantastic job by both.

THE DARK ANDRE - Excellent job breaking the question down. I always like that. Also really liked how you took your argument to so many areas to further validate it rather than just concentrating solely on a few points. Obviously the risk of doing this is not being able to expand enough on some points but I thought you argued all your points probably better in a concise manner than most would using twice the amount of words. Big fan of how you didn’t limit your examples to just one or two sports and even used examples from sporting teams all over the world from the UK to India to America. Makes your argument even stronger that you can back it up with examples from such a variety of sources. Would have liked to have seen you expand further on the spirit of competition point though. That’s actually the main direction that I thought both debates would go in but both of them raised points far more compelling and creative than that so bravo.

Perfect Poster - Really well written and argued likewise. Took a different approach of concentrating more on a smaller number of arguments and really expanding well on them. Makes it even harder for me to contrast between the two and choose a winner. Thanks a bunch for that! Excellent job comparing the difference between the short and long term outcomes with the examples you used. Thought you could have maybe gone on to talk about the ethics of essentially tanking or throwing a match for long term benefits from there perhaps. Both debates could have addressed counter arguments to not always playing full strength teams a little more actually. That would have really determined a clear winner for me.

Such a tough decision. Giving to THE DARK ANDRE because I thought he explained his points more concisely than Perfect Poster which also allowed him to raise more points to further strengthen his argument, along with a stronger use of examples.

Winner - THE DARK ANDRE

The Lady Killer
This was tough to judge because both debates were fairly similar in both stance and support. Both basically claimed that sports teams shouldn't be expected to start their strongest teams every game. Each supported this stance with the idea that injury is a big risk. Therefore, it's time to focus on what separates these debates from each other.

THE DARK ANDRE - This debate stated its stance from the get-go, defining terms in the prompt for clarity which is always a smart move. You give proper, relevant examples for all of your claims - risk of injury, different modes of attack for different opponents, differing philosophies/perspectives of what constitues the "strongest" team, etc. All very valid points. You also address a few of the potential rebuttals, such as people paying to see the stars play, which you tie back into risking injury and not being able to see them play for longer than a single game. Very nice. I think this is where you have the edge on the opposing debate.

Perfect Poster - Another strong debate. Glad to see both posters put up strong efforts in our inaugural title match. Similar support to the first debate with proper examples, but I think were you came up a bit short was addressing the potential rebuttals - something that doesn't need to chew up a lot of your word limit, but something that should definitely be touched upon as it was in the first debate. Makes your claim even stronger when you can shoot down opposing ideals. Very solid effort, though. You clearly belonged in the main event.


Winner - THE DARK ANDRE


Winner via Split Decision - THE DARK ANDRE


THE DARK ANDRE won the debating

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Old 07-01-2013, 05:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

Congrats to all winners, especially THE DARK ANDRE.
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

FUCK, king bebe no showed. Wanted to see him get BURRIED.
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:27 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS



THIS CLOSE
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

Congrats to the winners, and good work to everyone!

at the banter after my match. And best of luck, Rush.

Gonna read the debates after Raw.
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

Congrats to all the winners as per, especially Andre. Sports title match set the standard for title matches as high as I'd hoped. We've drafted in a couple more judges so hopefully the time between deadlines and results won't be as long. Card for Show 3 should be in a few days. Just need some help on a few topics.
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

I get to exercise my rematch clause, correct?
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

Congratulations to all the winners. Some really good debates in there. The feedback is really appreciated on my debate. I'm a newbie to this so it will really help me to produce a more solid debate next time. I read through it the other day and I noticed that I didn't do the best I could have done and I noticed how cluttered and jumbled up it felt. Will definitely stick to one side throughout the debate next time. This was a pleasure to take part in and I can only continue to improve from here. Looking forward to the next topic I will be debating next time and until then and I'm going to try and improve my skills.
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

Thanks to everyone who contributed-- really strong efforts. Appreciated the work by all. Thanks to the fellas who debated me, and to the judges who gave their feedback. I appreciate it and look forward to getting better next time. Great work all around, folks!
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Old 07-01-2013, 05:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: TDL II: SECOND WAVE - THE RESULTS

Well done to all the winners, all the debates I've read so fair have been really good. Pretty surprised that I won my debate actually, I'll try and take the judges advice on board to continue to improve my debate though as I still feel it could have been a lot better.
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