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Sign up here: First Debate Tournament of 2008

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posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:16 AM
reply to post by semperfortis

Thanks for the reply, semperfortis, however disappointing it is.

In a world awash with half-truth, outright lies, shifting positional stance subject to blowing wind, and demogoguery(if American political debates are any indication), here we are confronting the same thing in this venerable site that proclaims to practice "deny ignorance". How about "embrace entertainment" as in any other mass media ? I thought people come to this refuge, here to uncover truth, unveil disinformation, en-knowledge themselves. Perhaps I am guilty of naivety like any other.

Recent departure of JL notwithstanding, and the accusations of integrity and disinformation associated with it, I find your revelation extremely disappointing. Perhaps I should have left on the highly entertaining "American Idol", in lieu of something I expected more, as I find even the views of the esteemed "super mods" are manufactured fakery born out of the motivation to solicit competitive rating of one vs another.

In this sense, I realize now that you have lost the debate with TheVagabond, alas, the pursuasive power of the pen, even devoid of the power of integrity wielding it, is mightier than the sword.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 01:02 AM
reply to post by NeedToNo

Hi needtono,

Whilst i understand and respect what your trying to say the debate forum at the moment is all about learning to debate. The debate forum went negelcted a little bit for some time on ATS and its mainly thanks to Vagabond that its all back up and running and probably more popular than ever.

I do agree though for championship matches or exhibition matches where two very good debaters are going to go toe to toe it would be great to see the main topics being discussed on ATS as the topics for the debate. Maybe even have a poll among ATS members about what topics they like to see some of the best debaters on ATS fight it out over.

I dont agree with being able to pick your own topic though. Inless both debaters are equally passionate for opposite sides of the same debate topic and are happy for the debate to be set up like that.

To summise i think your being a bit shrill and depressing with your statements not everything is black and white and this part of the forum is still developing give it a chance

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 07:07 AM
reply to post by NeedToNo


I can't not settle for that my new friend...

I would ask that you consider this...

The most true and pure form of "Denying Ignorance" must be accepting that as humans our knowledge is so limited, either side of an issue could in fact be true.

Accepting that we are not all knowing.


Understanding that LEARNING is "Denying Ignorance", not sticking to one position without the ability to consider or research another.

Many times on this site, and especially in this forum, I have been posting and finding myself beginning to change my views 180 degrees on a subject. All based on the research and viewpoints of an opponent or fellow member and the research I have conducted to debate that opponent.

Learning that there is ALWAYS another side to an issue.

THAT is truly "Denying Ignorance."

That is the beauty of the Debate Forum.

That is ATS.


posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 10:44 AM
reply to post by NeedToNo

Originally posted by NeedToNo
Perhaps I should have left on the highly entertaining "American Idol", in lieu of something I expected more, as I find even the views of the esteemed "super mods" are manufactured fakery born out of the motivation to solicit competitive rating of one vs another.

Have at it. Personally, I would rate the chances of discovering some inherent truth here on ATS at a decided less than 100%, while a mainline of "American Idol" is decidely less than 10%. As for the supermods and their opinion....I find it wonderful that you can make such an assertion with what your post count reflects to be limited experience own impression.

And what about arguing the side of a topic that you disagree with? Seems to me, most times, that I end up learning more about what I think and believe, as well as why I do, when I have to immerse myself in supporting arguements, reasons, rhetoric, etc. for the opposite of my inclined position. Really....I couldn't have a decent understanding of what it's like to have a blue light blinding my face if I never sat/stood for an hour in complete darkness. I tend to appreciate the dichotomy and balance of things, as it were, when I have to argue a side that I disagree.

It's an excercise. Many of us do not have the luxury of being, right off the bat, as intellectually satisified and complete as you have presented yourself to be. We appreciate the oppurtunity to open our minds and discover why we may be passionate about...rather than being passionate without compassion for a fellow humans idea(s)....

Do you really want to debate something like this with a field of debators? Seems to me that you would have a better chance choosing one of us and setting up a Challenge Match......

[edit on 6-2-2008 by MemoryShock]

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 11:06 AM
I desperately need to get started here, as the Feb 7th deadline is fast approaching. I know I need to get into a match very soon, but have no idea how to proceed, as there is no "match" set up with my name in it out on the Debate Forum.

MemoryShock said I need to get in a Practice or Challenge match very soon... but where do I do that? Do I solicit myself in a thread of my own creation? Do I solicit myself in a post in this thread?

This is an attempt to deny my own ignorance. I really want to test my mettle in debate, but have yet to figure out what to do next...

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 11:08 AM
reply to post by damajikninja

Solicit yourself here.....

Solicit yourself in u2u.....find the list of fighters and let them know you want to spar....

Anything you can think of....this side if the T&C's....

You can do it!!

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 11:08 AM
reply to post by damajikninja

I am in the same situation. I am not able to post in the debate forum and am not sure how to proceed. Any help anyone could offer me wold be really appreciated. I am sorry to be a burden and I appologize for my lack of understanding and knowledge. I really do want o participate and once the details are straightened out I will be full speed ahead.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 11:19 AM
Hmm, so Animal - maybe we should have a go at it then! I'm not sure who sets the topic, or whether this would be a practice round, or an official tournament match... but looks to me like you and I should partner up.

[edit on 2/6/2008 by damajikninja]

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 12:26 PM
Sounds great, there will be a U2U waiting for you when you log back in.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 01:08 PM
reply to post by semperfortis

"Many times on this site, and especially in this forum, I have been posting and finding myself beginning to change my views 180 degrees on a subject. All based on the research and viewpoints of an opponent or fellow member and the research I have conducted to debate that opponent. "

Point well taken, however, given the implication that deep seated integrity of one's position is subservient to short notice thinking, and since it is all about beating the opponent(as you mentioned earlier), I wonderd if you ever accused anyone of "flip flopping", Bush, Romney, mcCain, Hilary.., debate opponent ?

BTW, I think the following article from Scientific American, "Getting Duped: How the Media Messes with Your Mind", maybe useful to all of the debaters(hope they don't grow up to be media spin meisters) and gives some perspective to the dangers of quicksilver reasoning.

This article itself is self-indicting, interestingly enough.

[edit on 6-2-2008 by NeedToNo]

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 06:04 PM
reply to post by NeedToNo

Your logic is fallible..

"Flip Flopping" implies the changing of a perceived opinion in order to obtain personal gain.

The realization that all truths we hold dear may in fact be flawed, is a true beginning of wisdom.

Can you look past your obvious prejudice of the debate forum and see this much?

The ability to say honestly to oneself, "I believe in what I know, but I am willing to listen and learn from those that disagree", is the core of an intellect ready to grow.

In the debate forum, we frequently may have to debate a side we do not initially agree with, true. I have on a number of occasions.

I have also successfully argued a side and never come to believe in it. Does that make me a flip flopper as you imply? What did I have to gain other than winning the debate?
Or more accurately, am I simply adept at research and arguing a point, regardless of my personal stance on that point...

Some of Histories greatest minds were great debaters. Reminiscent of the coffee shops in Vienna, the Pubs in England and the "Stomps" in America, more historically important decisions have been made courtesy of the debate than any other form of conversation.

That is why I stress that this forum on ATS is far and above the most important forum... PERIOD..

We research and are challenged on our research.

We learn from each other and teach each other.

We change our minds and change the minds of others.

What could possibly be more important....

I would also suggest if you do not like our form and function, seek your enlightenment elsewhere, for it is here that I have found my brothers and sisters that challenge me and give me reason to broaden my intellect and knowledge base.

I would also think that there are many that would successfully debate you on this topic you are so concerned with. Just ask one...


posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 06:40 PM
reply to post by NeedToNo

I think you may have misunderstood the intention of the Debate forum on Above Top Secret. It is for the discourse of ideas on set topics. I think you'll find many fighters here that don't agree with the side they are given yet strive to learn enough to convince the judges that there side of the debate is a stronger argument. Not right or wrong, just stronger in their argument. The randomness of it makes for an educational, and sometimes eye opening, experience. If you want to debate on a subject that you feel passionate about, it is rather easy to arrange a debate with another member that has passion on the opposite side. The point of the tournaments are to test your skills as a debater, not so much to test your knowledge of a particular subject. Throw your hat into the ring. I'll give you my spot if it's necassary to accommodate you. I think you'll find it much more challenging then you expect.

We aren't here to "spin" anything. We are not trying to take false information and force feed it to an unwitting audience, a la MSM. I think you will find that most of the topics debated here are backed up with facts, plain and simple. I think you may underestimate the majority of members here.

I also fail to see how you came to the conclusion that we lack "integrity" in our opinions, seeing as you have been here for a little over a week. Can you tell me what memoryshock's opinion of the "war on terror" is? Or Argos' opinion of the current spate of conflicts and political upheaval in Africa? Maybe semperfortis' opinion of the the recent escalation in the rhetoric between the West and Russia that is reminiscent of the cold war days? Can you tell me how many times the have changed there mind on these opinions?

I feel bad that you think having an open enough mind to consider that a stance or an opinion you may hold could be wrong is a bad thing.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 07:35 PM
reply to post by semperfortis

Semper, thanks for your thoughtful reply, as I agree with most of your points regarding experiences of confronting and obsorbing intellectual stimulations of pro and con as an essential part of human learning process.

However, my point from the beginning has been a cautionary tale of sublimating one's experienced view(never did I say or mean unchangeable) given away to the hasty overnight excursions of the seemingly rational mind, which I don't believe humans are inherently rational beings to start with, given its bicameral brain construct. There is also a matter of the need to minimize the transgressions back and forth, as we do not expect, nor tolerate such wish-wash behavior from our political leaders. And yes much research and preparation goes behind the scenes in political debates, with no politician ever conceding an inch in these debates, much like the debates here.

Besides, if one changes one's view as a positive by-product of the debate process, one can easily question the shaky original debate position in the first place. If this is disagreeable, that is fine, as I started these thoughts as a mere suggestion to inject a different view point to improve the honesty of the debate that can rise above the mere notion of beating the opponent at all pursuasive cost.

We also see this in the media at large with the likes of e.g., "rush-to-judgement" Limbaugh, "insanity" Hannity, "helter skelter" Coulter, and of course, "O'my golly" O'Reilly, among others.

And no, I have no intention of debating this subject matter(which it is beginning to look like from your comment), because in the least, out of my respect for you as a great "technical" debater, which I believe you, TheVagabond, and others are above-top-secret majic class.

And yes, I will follow the strength of your suggestion, and move on.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 09:21 PM
I thought a 10,000 character limit would be more then I would ever need. Wow, was I wrong. Luckily we have a few more posts to go to get all my thoughts across.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 09:40 PM
Hmm, I thought that i would just be assigned a debate, but it seems I have to request or post a challenge.

Open to all invitations here.

posted on Feb, 6 2008 @ 09:43 PM
Once the tournament begins, Feb.15th I believe, you will be assigned a debate.

Practice and Challenge Matches need a little solicitation on your part...

Anybody want to take on dominus for some sparring before the spar, as it were?

posted on Feb, 7 2008 @ 11:36 AM
JSOBecky will not be able to participate. Jpm1602 is in.
This is the last day for challenge matches to begin. Once all matches that began today or previously are over, the tournament will be able to begin- matches that begin today need to be done by the 15th, because we start then one way or another.
Results for skyfloating v bodrul and semperfortis v chissler will be announced this evening.

1. semperfortis 14
2. Loki 11
3. MemoryShock 11
4. Argos 6
5. GAOTU789 5
6. Skyfloating 5 (match underway, may gain 2 or lose 2)
7. TruthWithin 4
8. budski 4
9. illusionsaregrander 3
10. NYK537 2
11. FreeThinkerIdealist 2
12. Sublime620 1
13. LDragonFire
14. dominusluciferi
15. TLomon
16. bodrul (match underway- may gain 2)
17. jitombe
18. TheDuckster
19. thesaint
20. whatukno
21. Parabol
22. jpm1602
23. damajikninja (challenge match underway, may gain 2)
24. Animal (challenge match underway, may gain 2)

posted on Feb, 7 2008 @ 11:50 AM
All participants now have been given the rank of fighter and should be able to post in the debate forum. Please do not post in debates you are not participating in unless they are concluded and open for comment. Please do not create new threads in the forum.

posted on Feb, 7 2008 @ 11:52 AM
I would be more than game for a good practice match. if anyone is interested - let me know!!!

posted on Feb, 7 2008 @ 01:56 PM

Is there a reason TheDuckster and I are not listed as "match underway"? Our debate has been getting pretty hot and heavy (and should be over by this weekend by my estimate)

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