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The Crusaders Ac Intro

The Crusaders Ac Intro

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Published by: CougarDeabte on Jul 07, 2010
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Districts
Bettendorf HW
T
HE
C
RUSADERS
AC
INTRODUCTION
My partner and I affirm [
the topic, Resolved: In the United States, organized political lobbying does more harm than good.
]To clarify, we define:Organized political lobbying as, “[an organization that]
to
conduct[s] activities aimed at influencing public officials
andesp. members of a legislative body on legislation
” from Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law
1
.The dependent clause “in the US” modifies the independent clause “organized political lobbying does more harm thangood” while “more harm than good” is merely a result of the verb “does.” Thus we conclude that “in the US” onlymodifies the noun “organized political lobbying” since it’s a gerund that performs the action of doing more harm thangood. This means even though we can only debate about lobbying in the US, ramifications outside of the US are stillrelevant.[
 Even if we accept it the other way, it only makes sense to talk about political lobbying in the US that could haveramifications outside of the US. Interpreting it the other way would allow arguments about political lobbying outsideof the US affecting the US, which is less likely to happen.
]We offer three contentions:1.2.3.
1
"lobbying." Def. 1a. Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law. 7th ed. 2003.
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Districts
Bettendorf HW
T
HE
C
RUSADERS
AC
REFORM (GENERAL)
[_________], organized political lobbying has consistently prevented reform from happening.The journal of Rhetoric and Public Affairs
2
writes in 2004:
However, agenda management requires an effective rhetoric. On the one hand, manipulating political structures in public policymaking must be legitimized, and legitimation requires symbolic action.21 When policies involvecomplex issues, the legitimation may be as simple as claiming that “hollow laws” are major, substantive changes, or as precise as focusing attention on one part of a bill while obscuring other provisions that make its passagemeaningless. In addition, organizational rhetors have a number of strategies available to undermine popular pressure for reform. Opponents can contain an issue conceptually, either by defining the issue in a way that minimizesits appeal or by drawing on culturally sanctioned assumptions to frame policy proposals in ways that make meaningful reform seem objectionable and palliatives seem adequate.22 During the 1990s conceptual
containment campaigns
supported and funded by U.S. organizations
became more sophisticated and more effective as opponentslearned to coordinate lobbying activities with “public issue” campaigns. The most successful efforts to undermine public support for reform argued that socioeconomic “problems” are “private sector” concerns, not matters for governmental policy.
This argument gains its credibility from the cultural assumption that free market capitalism is inherently superior to any other economic system, and that government “interference” inthe free market system is inherently futile and perverse.23
The astonishing success of 
the “Harry and Louise”
attacks on “Hillarycare” made it abundantlyclear that organizational rhetors, in the guise of “public interest” campaigns, can significantly influence popular definitions of policy issues and thereby short-circuit reform.
24 Five years after the demise of the Clinton health care proposal,
opponents of theMcCain-Feingold bill regulating the tobacco industry were able to capitalize on
advocates’
arguments that
the industry long hadcovered up the addictive properties of nicotine. Since the funding mechanisms in the bill relied on increased tobacco taxes, opponents successfully defined
the proposal
as a tax bill in disguise, one that
unfairly penalized precisely those poor and middle- class victims that
the bill’s proponents had demonstrated
were incapable of shaking their addiction.The journal elaborates on how it’s much easier to oppose reform than to require it.
For example, expensing stock options would initially have concentrated costs (on corporate executives, stockbrokers, and institutional investors) because they reduce the profits that corporations report to the general public, andwould have diffused benefits (primarily to individual investors).
Since there are no established mechanisms through which individual investorscan be informed about the issue, become connected to other individual investors, or engage in coordinated political action, there is little chance that they will be able to influence policymakers. In short, it is much easier tomobilize opposition to expensing options than it is to mobilize pressure to require it.
19 Business elites are advantageously positioned todominate the decision-making process.
Through fundraising and professional associations they are in constant contact with policymakers on a variety of issues, are supported by an overwhelming number of Washington lobbyists, and arelinked to one another through communication networks that can be instantly activated.
2
Conrad, Charles. "The Illusion of Reform: Corporate Discourse and Agenda Denial in the 2002 "Corporate Meltdown"" Rhetoric & Public Affairs 7.3 (2004): 311-38. ProjectMUSE. Web. 31 Jan. 2010.
- 2 -
 
Districts
Bettendorf HW
T
HE
C
RUSADERS
AC
REFORM (GENERAL)
[_________], organized political lobbying can easily kill reform legislation.The journal of Rhetoric and Public Affairs
3
writes in 2004:Political elites,
including corporate rhetors,
prefer that public policies be made in private. Through lobbying and politicalconnections to oversight agencies, elites can use established connections and relationships to dominate privatedecision- making. Public policymaking is risky. It publicizes elite influence over the policy process, and mayallow non-elite groups to discover common interests and to organize
in ways that create coalitions that exceed the “minimum winning size” needed to initiatereforms that are opposed by elites.14 However, in some cases, normal processes of privatizing public policymaking do break down and issues become highly visible parts of public discourse. When that happens, opponents of reform must find ways to shift public attention away from the issue, or to define it in ways that minimize the possibility that meaningful reform will emerge from the policy- making process.
The greatestadvantage that opponents of reform have is time. If opponents can only delay policy action until the attention andemotional fervor underlying calls for reform subside, they can maintain the status quo.
This is especially true when the media’s coverage of an issue is “episodic”—focusing on individual instances of objectionable actions—rather than “systemic”—explaining the long-term causes of those actions.16 Because the leaders of the executive branches of governmentalagencies (presidents, prime ministers, governors, or mayors) have a superior ability to focus public and media attention to preferred topics
, they are uniquely able to “contain” popular attention so that only those problems and proposals that they prefer to have discussed garner public attention.
3
Conrad, Charles. "The Illusion of Reform: Corporate Discourse and Agenda Denial in the 2002 "Corporate Meltdown"" Rhetoric & Public Affairs 7.3 (2004): 311-38. ProjectMUSE. Web. 31 Jan. 2010.
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