Students don't know what it means to be attacked as a father for having a son with drug addiction problems. Students don't know what it means to be humiliated for how little taxes or how much debt they have.
What do you mean by "clean" and "dirty" debate practice?
For competition dirtier tactics including making 'must answer or you lose' style arguments that take longer to answer than they do to make in order to generate a time advantage.
Just as Kennedy-Nixon made makeup for televised debates mandatory, dumbed-down word choice has become necessary to rate more highly.
> estimating the U.S. grade level required to read a given
> text. The formula uses the average number of words per
> sentence and the average number of syllables per word.
That sounds like a potentially flawed measure of grade level - and I'm not really sure it's a great measurement of debate quality. A good debating/speaking tactic would be to speak in such a way that the entire audience understands what you say and there are no other meanings.
The article opens with "at least 93 interruptions in 90 minutes" which they suggest indicates bad quality debate, then asserts that the solution is "don’t talk to us like we’re in middle school". Using more complex language and longer sentences doesn't address interruptions, it doesn't address the answering of questions and it doesn't address the discussion on policy. Using flamboyant language will simply not help here.
> The Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level Formula is a useful tool for estimating the U.S. grade level required to read a given text. The formula uses the average number of words per sentence and the average number of syllables per word.
I find this way easier to read!
This topic is fun to analyze, but it's not really aligned with the objective of a political debate. Simple words can broadcast competence, and big words can be taken as pretentious.
Fleisch-Kincaid is for written documents. It's dubious whether it's really of value even in that limited circumstance, but it makes no sense for transcriptions of written speech, where punctuation is basically up to whoever's transcribing it. The metric is strongly influenced by sentence length, so you can see why it would cause problems.
Language Log has written about this and why it's ridiculous in detail before.
Incomplexity of speech does not imply lack of intelligence.
Here's the section on Simple English in Simple English Wikipedia: https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:About#Simple_Eng...
Imagine being reprimanded for use of complex words and statistical terms in an evidence-based policy discussion in a boardroom. Imagine someone applying to be CEO, President, or Chairman of the Board and showing up without a laptop, any charts, or any data.
Perhaps there is a better game for assessing competency to practice evidence-based policy.
This commenter effectively refutes the claim that Fleisch-Kincaid is a useful metric for assessing the grade-level of interpretively-punctuated spoken language: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=24807610
Like I said, from "Ask HN: Recommendations for online essay grading systems?" https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=22921064 :
> Who else remembers using the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level metric in Word to evaluate school essays? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flesch%E2%80%93Kincaid_readabi...
> Imagine my surprise when I learned that this metric is not one that was created for authors to maximize: reading ease for the widest audience is not an objective in some deparments, but a requirement.
> What metrics do and should online essay grading systems present? As continuous feedback to authors, or as final judgement?
That being said, disrespectful little b will not be tolerated or venerated by the other half of the curve.
Uneducated people have 1 vote each, same as educated people. If you can't convince uneducated people that we have to do something about global warming then in democratic countries, you can't make the sacrifices needed to solve global warming. The result is disastrous for the planet.
We need presidential candidates that can really dumb things down to such a level that just about anyone can understand it, no matter their education level.
Without exactly joking, or exactly being serious, democracy isn't about voters understanding the real issues. Just the person capable of figuring out how to get the voters on side is also canny enough to make good decisions when they get to the real issues. Most people neither know nor care. The debates are moving in the direction of that world - theatre to judge how well politicians do theatre, and that is the proxy of their actual ability. It isn't possible to catch up on what matters about someone in 3 political debates.
(obviously whether what is debated is policies is another matter altogether, but this is not what's being debated here)
I think most could figure out that he was referring to people being disadvantaged from context clues, though.
In Europe they're almost certainly more likely to say "snookered" instead, as 8 ball is not their main sport.
US players generally understand that reference, but I'm not sure non- players will.
Edit for comparison:
Search results include definitions such as:
"A term, referring to the game of pool, meaning in an unfavorable or uncomfortable position"
My Dad was born around the same time as Joe Biden (a few years different) and also from Pennsylvania (though I don't think this is particularly associatsd with that region) and used it fairly frequently; I also remember hearing it fairly frequently growing up fron others of his age cohort (and Boomers) and media created by and for them.
I think it's a fading idiom, though.