This House Would Cap Every Company’s Highest Salary at 10x the Lowest Salary within That Company


The biggest question – who are we? No, that was not a philosophical question. That was a literal technical question necessary in order to properly identify the course of this debate.

Let’s forget about being debaters in a debate chamber with adjudicators judging and assigning values and prices our insignificant lives for a moment. Let’s properly think of ourselves as a focused group, having a discussion about this motion “should we introduce a salary cap of max 10*<lowestsalary>?” Now, who are we? Who are the people likely to be discussing this issue?

That is called characterization – one of the things, upon some certain motions, that will make or break a team’s performance. The characterization can possibly go either of these two ways:

  1. It can be assumed that the debate chamber is filled with government officials that is trying to decide whether or not to pass this bill – will be a regulation that affects all companies within the country
  2. It can also be assumed that the debate chamber is filled with shareholders of a certain company, and they (we) are wondering whether or not to introduce this new company policy.

Characterization #(1) is the one which is more logical and has more integrity towards the wording of the motion, although characterization #(2) is still quite valid. Supposing that Team Affirmative sets up the debate using characterization #(1), we highly discourage any Team Negative to come up with a definition challenge – well, unless you are Swing Team, then who are we to judge, right – but if Team Affirmative sets up the debate using characterization #(2), the debate starts to sway a little bit from what it is originally supposed to be. Feel free to perform a definition challenge, as now you have quite the basis and reasoning to do one. Although we still won’t recommend performing definition challenges any day. Definition challenges annoy adjudicators. Much. Really. Really much.

REMEMBER! A definition challenge is no different from an argument or a rebuttal. You have to explain and elaborate it. Do not just throw one on the face of your adjudicators then expect them to just suddenly believe in you religiously.

Oh, well, that’s one headache regarding this motion. Other headaches are geographical bias and government coverage. Geographical bias, generally almost all motions should automatically be interpreted as happening in liberal democratic countries, yadda yadda yadda, bla bla but negative teams can point out the immorality of Team Affirmative’s proposal by borrowing the perspective of third-world countries, usually will bring about an argument containing the word “jealousy” and “migration” – this should be quite obvious. We would like to assume that you have known and/or heard about this before. Government coverage, it should be automatically conceded that government bills can only fully cover only the public sector. Some private sectors might succumb to policies, but it scales disproportionately as the size of the business goes down. You should have ever heard or already known about this one as well.

Team Affirmative

  1. Because government has their own rights, trampling over private sectors’.

Urm.. we hope that it instantly bores you when we mention “social contract vs body autonomy”. Welp, this is yet another form of it. So, hopefully you get the big idea of what the majority elaborations this assertion will comprise of. Other things in order to expand this assertion include the concept of liberal-democracy and the span of government control as well as government’s vested interest in its country’s economic climate. Expect Team Negative to come up with an argument of “Team Affirmative will betray the concept of ‘liberal’ and ‘democracy’ and turns into an autocratic and dictator government the moment they dictate how private sectors should conduct their business” – sounds familiar?

  1. Because we want to decrease social gap.

Here comes the value judgment, the core, the heart, the point of this whole debate, yeay! Now, this argument can go three ways:

  • Want to increase the bottom (improving life quality of the 3D workers)
  • Want to decrease the ceiling (decreasing hedonistic nature and tendencies of white-collars)
  • Either both, or neither, don’t care, really – just want to eradicate the jealousy

Pay attention that the harms of the status quo, the urgency, differs from point (1) to (2) to (3) respectively. Point (1) means that if a country has an abundance of overworked and underpaid workers, it means India and China. It is immoral for a country to prolong unequal distribution of resources when the country has the capability to perform a Marxist approach. Other harms include increased crime rate and worsened stereotypes, racism, and discrimination. Point (2) means that if a country has quite a stock of filthy well-too-dam-rich people, chances are their consumption of luxurious goods will go overboard. The harm of this – don’t get me wrong – it is entirely within human rights to enjoy luxurious, tertiary goods – but there is indeed a problem when we have a family sleeping in a 5-star hotel every night when that money, if invested on proper public sector (come on, let’s just assume that the parents are reasonable humans and are perfectly rational and even capable of money management) would provide tremendous benefits to everybody. There is a threshold to how extravagant you can be, anyway. Going to the nightclub every weekend is hedonistic. Joining underground racing and participating in bets, is crazy. Point (3) is a combination of both point (1) and point (2), but capitalizes on the explanation of “what happens when this social gap introduces jealousy, and this jealousy finally reaches the lowest of its boiling point?” the manifestation of such suppressed emotion, at its peak, and at its worst, is a riot.

  1. Because we want to improve the working atmosphere.

Now that the urgency of the status quo in the form of the harm has already properly been explained, we move to the goal. What hampers our country from achieving our intended goal of a conducive working atmosphere, is that social gap. So, explore the components and what constitutes a conducive working atmosphere: aura of positivity, an open and accountable system, a standardization, or at least mechanization, of office politics, etc. – then emphasize on the presence, the existence of social gap – this will be the key point, pivotal in explaining this assertion. As you want to exaggerate the importance of social gap being removed so much in order for your proposal to have any significance in this motion. Afterwards, then feel free to expand your argument by stating the benefits of a conducive working atmosphere and how it could improve a country’s economy, or even something as simple as decreasing the need to provide fringe benefits to employees.

Team Negative

  1. Because body autonomy.

The good old classic social contract vs body autonomy clash. Or, in this case, the span of government control vs freedom of choice and freedom of expression. On the essence of basic human rights to freedom, choose your stance properly and then prep your defenses and offenses accordingly. To what extent do you genuinely believe that individuals-citizens have their own freedom? Draw the line too far, and what you will get is anarchy. Too near, and what you get is Team Affirmative’s dictatorship. Don’t get us wrong, though. Sometimes it could be interesting to debate on your opponent’s perspective and actually draw the line even further, and still prove all your points (and that would include all of their points as well) on their side, just a little bit more extreme. That is difficult, but not impossible. Should you choose to commit to this path, then first, clarify that this is not Team Negative flipping cases, second, establish that you have the same dictatorship views as Team Affirmative (or, even better, that Team Negative is even more autocratic and of a dictator than Team Affirmative), and, whilst upholding that values, be more efficient in pursuing the goal and solving the problem. One of the potential courses of this debate could be take extreme end of hard stance -> address how Team Affirmative’s stance is soft and weak -> establish stance precedence of how government control is actually absolute over all aspects of its country -> point out how government should be doing something else which is more efficient in order to solve the problem in the status quo, which is more feasible, more substantial, impacts of a greater magnitude, and “shocks” private enterprises more than Team Affirmative’s model.

Either that, or, go with the original supposed stance for Team Negative, but remember don’t go too far or else Team Affirmative will slap you with an argument of potential anarchy and its harms. Eh, but, hey, if you could justify anarchy, then why not – we personally have our own tastes for extreme-end debates of a super hard stance vs another super hard stance.

  1. Problem-solution mismatch.

Some grounds for this argument:

  • Social gap has its causes.
  • There is this distinction between curative and preventive action.
  • Sometimes, some actions undertaken in order to pursue one value will contradict the values of another.

Let’s run the course of arguments for ground (a). The philosophy is pretty simple: when an infraction is done, the punishment should go to the source, the perpetrator, instead of going to a scapegoat. In this case, identify the proper sources of social gap (find different ones from the ones established by Team Affirmative!), and then identify their differences in nature. Once properly established, you can freely claim that your subjects are the ones who are actually responsible and are the actual reasons behind social gap. Then proceed to attack Team Affirmative by saying that Team Affirmative’s action of addressing salary gap is a desperate attempt that does not, in essence, address the supposed culprit. Now, ground (b), which hopefully could established a strong footwork for ground (c). It is likely going to be accepted by both teams (although, still, the very nature of this is highly debatable) that Team Affirmative’s action is preventive (fix the current issue so that future problems won’t arise, couldn’t care less about what had happened prior to present time) instead of curative (address the problem in status quo, try to alleviate the harshness) in nature. For one, the most classical argument frequently used to attack preventive measures has been jealousy. The fact that these measures only concern towards fixing future issues leave present and past issues unresolved, and it is very unfair for the parties and actors already previously involved in these mishaps. Then again, the existence of preventive and curative actions is not mutually exclusive, so, prepare 2 to 3 (or 5.. or 10…) extra supporting elaborations that will back this argument up. The catch, supposing that Team Negative concedes that there are separate curative and preventive measures, is in identifying in which point of time they will have contradicting values. One example. Preventive action, already undertaken by the government. Bill is passed and now nobody can earn >10x lowest salary within a company. Curative measures, currently considered by the government, is to impose extra income tax on previous extraordinarily high salaries that had exceeded >10x lowest salary (might as well as add an extra “amnesty” facility), and at the same time, increase welfare benefits for the workers and grinders who had previously earned <1/10x the highest salary then this is planned to be implemented for 1 year ahead (eh, but, then again, we should consider retroactivity =.=” this elaboration probably won’t be worth your 7’20” afterall, but, ahh, whatever) – the point is, try to identify the part that no matter how much governments try to balance the rehabilitative nature of curative actions and the protectionist nature of preventive actions, the ultimate perfect balance can never be reached. Because, most of the time, past damages cannot be quantifiable. It’s not always about the money, sometimes it’s about the feelings too.

  1. Because the economy works best if left alone.

Important: the distinctive point that makes this assertion different (and they should be, mind you) from Team Negative’s Assertion 1 is the nature of Assertion 1 being practical – it is highly technical (dictating the span of government coverage) in its philosophy, and contains theories about law, governance, and/or philosophy in its studies. This Assertion 3, on the other hand, is superficial in philosophy (dictates how things would turn better or worse), and contains theories about economics in its studies.

Anyway, so most of the explanation in this assertion will sound exactly like what Adam Smith had said. There are some extra things to add on top of that, though. The point of equilibrium in the status quo (supposing that it is, indeed, equilibrium) translates that that more than >10x++ salary is worth that way for the CIOs, CFOs, CEOs, etc. and the fact that you have a surplus of overworked and underpaid low-level workers would mean that, there is, indeed, in fact, a surplus of such people in the workforce. Anybody expressing dismay and regret over that current condition would face a happy termination of employment slapped on the face, following the next surge of unemployed, low-skill, low-level worker patiently waiting in line to get employed and be overworked and underpaid yet again. This could be the explanation behind the underlying problem of the status quo, so this could go to either Assertion 2 or Assertion 3. Your call.

Extra Assertions for You!

  1. (-) Because later the C-whatever-O-s will get disappointed.
  2. (-) Because later the low-level low-skill workers will start to demand more (or feel comfortable and get inside their comfort zone, thus demotivating them from improving their skills).
  3. (+) Because this could actually improve company’s public image and the impression of public towards private sectors and enterprises (Indonesia, for example, has a phenomenon of everybody, parents usually, motivating their children in order to study hard and then get employed at the public sector, be a civil servant or else “family disappointment”).
  4. (-) Attack the number 15, like, as in, why is it fixed and not arbitrary? Also, when does it recalibrate its starting point?
  5. (+) Governments have a vested interest in prolonging private enterprises and business. In this case, this government wants to “force” a CSR (corporate social responsibility). CSR helps business.
  6. (-) This motion can’t cover the ultra-nerds. The ones who are not only addicted but are also studious to the extent that they delve into the coding of the game (usually in order to improve their gameplay, skill, and performance via their knowledge of game mechanics).
  7. (-) This motion imposes an unnecessary burden to aspiring game designers and developers who, let alone making bugs, they still couldn’t even manage to make their games properly.


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