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Post by Tees-Exe Line » Sun May 17, 2015 1:34 pm

Split from the CO History 2015 announcement. --JTH
bird bird bird bird bird wrote:(The 2013 edition of CO History was one of my all-time favorite tournaments, precisely because it had bonuses of outrageous difficulty. Let's try to avoid writing eleven-line tossups on answers one or two people in this field have heard of.)
Hey now. Wasn't there an ACF Fall that asked about some Canadian regiment Prince Charles is the honorary commander of?
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Sun May 17, 2015 2:05 pm

EFT 2010:
[10] Identify this regiment of horse based military units based out of Alberta, which Prince Charles was part of at one point.
ANSWER: Lord Strathcona's Horse
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your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion thread

Post by Masked Canadian History Bandit » Mon May 18, 2015 6:48 pm

Auks Ran Ova wrote:EFT 2010:
[10] Identify this regiment of horse based military units based out of Alberta, which Prince Charles was part of at one point.
ANSWER: Lord Strathcona's Horse
Wow. This is the single worst Canadian history question I've ever seen. The only thing in this that is correct is that it's based in Alberta. Lord Strathcona's Horse hasn't been a "horse based military unit" (what awkward phrasing) since the Hundred Days' Offensive, and has been armoured since the Second World War. Prince Charles is still the regiment's Colonel-in-Chief, which is an honorary position, while the question seems to imply that he both no longer has that position and once served with the regiment.
Last edited by Masked Canadian History Bandit on Mon May 18, 2015 7:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Mon May 18, 2015 9:50 pm

Masked Canadian History Bandit wrote:
Auks Ran Ova wrote:EFT 2010:
[10] Identify this regiment of horse based military units based out of Alberta, which Prince Charles was part of at one point.
ANSWER: Lord Strathcona's Horse
Wow. This is the single worst Canadian history question I've ever seen. The only thing in this that is correct is that it's based in Alberta. Lord Strathcona's Horse hasn't been a "horse based military unit" (what awkward phrasing) since the Hundred Days' Offensive, and has been armored since the Second World War. Prince Charles is still the regiment's Colonel-in-Chief, which is an honorary position, while the question seems to imply that he both no longer has that position and once served with the regiment.
I think there was also a bonus leadin before this (I just pulled this quote from an old thread since I didn't feel like digging through the st), so there's probably some more clues in there - but I also remember this being the general tenor of the reaction to the part at the time.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Masked Canadian History Bandit » Tue May 19, 2015 12:48 am

EFT 2010 Round 5 wrote: 7. In what was probably their most important deployment yet, this member of a certain nation's armed forces was deployed to Bosnia attached to the U.N. in 1997. For 10 points each:
[10] Identify this regiment of horse based military units based out of Alberta, which Prince Charles was part of at one point.
ANSWER: Lord Strathcona's Horse
[10] Lord Strathcona's Horse is a pretty neat military organization found in this nation's military, whose navy has not yet been the subject of a Bruce Arthur tossup. Its cities include Edmonton and Iqaluit.
ANSWER: Canada
[10] Another deployment of Lord Strathcona's Horse came about when it was deployed to this nation, led at that time by Konrad Adenauer. Its “economic miracle” describes how it and Austria's economies quickly rebounded after WW2.
ANSWER: West Germany or Westdeutchland [do not prompt on Germany]
Wow. This is just insane. Sometimes playing Canadian questions as a Canadian is like being in Bizarro World where everything's made up and the facts don't matter.

This lede-in could apply to any unit (or individual, since "member" is ambiguous) from any of the various important countries that sent troops on that mission. It also juxtaposes weirdly with the following clue after the FTPE to imply that the LdSH was using horses in Bosnia.

But those issues are just bad writing, the first part of the lede-in makes it seem like the writer didn't even care to learn anything about the subject matter of the bonus before writing it (or at least anything correct). It's pretty insulting that the question writer decided that a routine peacekeeping stint was the most important deployment of a regiment that fought in the Boer War, both World Wars, and Korea, and has three Victoria Cross winners.

LdSH's Victoria Cross winner in the First World War, Gordon Flowerdew, literally rallied his men to charge against a German unit three times their size entrenched with machine guns and stabbed enough of them to win the damn engagement. But no, Canada only does peacekeeping, so Bosnia must be the most important thing ever.

Image

I don't think any other country has its history as consistently misrepresented by quizbowl question writers as Canada's. I'm probably biased, but at times it seems that unless a Canadian history question was written by a Canadian, NAQT, Ryan Westbrook, Matt Bollinger, Bruce Arthur, or Eric Mukherjee, it's going to have some factual mistakes. I should write a packet of US history questions that uses all the horrible tropes that writers from the States use when writing about Canadian history to accurately reproduce this experience.

Here's a sneak preview:
Best US History Pack wrote: In what was probably their most important deployment yet, this member of a certain nation's armed forces was deployed to Bosnia attached to the U.N. in 1995. For 10 points each:
[10] Identify this division of military units experienced in trench warfare based out of North Carolina, which All Americans used to be part of.
ANSWER: 82nd Airborne Division
[10] The 82nd Airborne is a pretty neat military organization found in this nation's military, whose navy has not yet been the subject of a Jay Misuk tossup. Its cities include Raleigh and Juneau.
ANSWER: United States of America [and equivalents]
[10] Another deployment of the 82nd Airborne came about when it was deployed to this nation, led at that time by Konrad Adenauer. Its “economic miracle” describes how it and Austria's economies quickly rebounded after WW2.
ANSWER: West Germany or Westdeutchland [do not prompt on Germany]
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Important Bird Area » Tue May 19, 2015 12:58 am

At the rate this is going, every tossup zero in this tournament is going to get spoiled.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Ike » Tue May 19, 2015 1:09 am

It's pretty insulting that the question writer decided that a routine peacekeeping stint was the most important deployment of a regiment that fought in the Boer War, both World Wars, and Korea, and has three Victoria Cross winners.
So I wrote this question and actually don't recall writing it - I remember some backlash at it that Rob pointed out at the time. If you want to send me a constructive critique I guess I'll listen, but again I really don't recall writing it - otherwise why are we using this thread to dredge up work I did 5-6 years ago?

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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Masked Canadian History Bandit » Tue May 19, 2015 1:32 am

Ike wrote:
It's pretty insulting that the question writer decided that a routine peacekeeping stint was the most important deployment of a regiment that fought in the Boer War, both World Wars, and Korea, and has three Victoria Cross winners.
So I wrote this question and actually don't recall writing it - I remember some backlash at it that Rob pointed out at the time. If you want to send me a constructive critique I guess I'll listen, but again I really don't recall writing it - otherwise why are we using this thread to dredge up work I did 5-6 years ago?

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Sorry, not trying to bash you in particular, your writing has obviously improved a lot since then as exemplified by the stellar ACF Nationals set. That being said, I don't know what can be learned from this for new writers except to Google things you don't know anything about before writing questions on them, because I'm honestly baffled by how anyone would think the EFT question was a good idea with a modicum of research on the Strathconas.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Tue May 19, 2015 1:36 am

Look, we cut you Canadians a lot of slack with your excess Us and metric measurements, but there's no country on Earth that calls the opening clue of a tossup a "lede-in".
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Cheynem » Tue May 19, 2015 9:08 am

To be fair, everyone hated on that bonus when it was first released.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Tees-Exe Line » Tue May 19, 2015 9:45 am

Masked Canadian History Bandit wrote:I don't think any other country has its history as consistently misrepresented by quizbowl question writers as Canada's.
This is supposed to be a thread announcing a history tournament, but I can't let this ridiculous whine go by unchallenged. I would stake a good deal of money on the contention that the country whose history is most often misrepresented in quizbowl is the United States, because it is the country whose history is most often represented in quizbowl and quizbowl history questions are, on the whole, pretty bad representations of any country's history. And I was already cruel enough to Auroni in the Oppen thread, but really, that "Nazi Women" question was about as misguided a representation of the history of Germany in the 19th and 20th centuries as I've seen, save those written by Norman Podhoretz or Benzion Netanyahu.

Furthermore, Canadian history questions have their own special flavor of terrible, such that I personally find the appearance of Lord Strathcona's horse-based unit to be a breath of fresh air. Usually it's a parade of Liberal triumphalism, teleological interpretations of confederation as a natural end, all identity conflict solved by Trudeau (until the recent appearance of the dread Harper), and a succession of potted "trials" like Red River gestured toward by way of glorifying the present. It's no wonder you still have Prince Charles leading your forces into battle, seeing how gloriously you carry forward the Whig tradition.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Tue May 19, 2015 9:47 am

This one time there was a bad question. I disliked it. People should write questions that aren't as bad as that one.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by minusfive » Tue May 19, 2015 10:02 am

Tees-Exe Line wrote:Furthermore, Canadian history questions have their own special flavor of terrible, such that I personally find the appearance of Lord Strathcona's horse-based unit to be a breath of fresh air. Usually it's a parade of Liberal triumphalism, teleological interpretations of confederation as a natural end, all identity conflict solved by Trudeau (until the recent appearance of the dread Harper), and a succession of potted "trials" like Red River gestured toward by way of glorifying the present. It's no wonder you still have Prince Charles leading your forces into battle, seeing how gloriously you carry forward the Whig tradition.
I think we've reached peak idiocy. By all means don't learn Canadian history, but implying that all Canadian questions are somehow terrible earns you the title of "Leader of Lord Dumbass's Horse" (from me) and the opprobrium you so often receive (from everyone).
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Tue May 19, 2015 10:45 am

This thread delivered what the title promised.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Tue May 19, 2015 10:51 am

Anyway, as quizbowl becomes more international, I think it is useful to discuss what people in country x think of their history, versus what people in America think of their history.

When I visited the UK to play Oxford Open in 2011, I was struck by how little interest British quizbowl players had in their own late 19th century history. British history in American quizbowl can be a parade of Disraelis, Palmerstons, and Salisburies...but the British people I actually talked to didn't seem to care about any these people (and certainly didn't care about lesser figures such as the Earl of Derby), but instead saw their important history as having taken place during the 1920's and the rise of the Labour Party...an era that isn't particularly asked about in American quizbowl questions, at least not when I was playing half a decade ago.

Likewise, American quizbowl in the late 2000's went through a phase where every Canadian history tossup was about Riel, which the Canadian players I met at 2009 VETO thought was very curious indeed. The injection of actual Canadians into positions of great influence within American quizbowl has probably fixed this to an extent, but clearly Canadians are not yet happy with it, nor is Marshall Steinbaum.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by AKKOLADE » Tue May 19, 2015 11:00 am

This is the worst thing involving a mount since the last beating Ronda Rousey handed out.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Benin Rebirth Party » Tue May 19, 2015 12:59 pm

I am very confused as to why Quizbowl thinks the On-To-Ottawa Trek is the most important thing to happen in Canadian History.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Tees-Exe Line » Tue May 19, 2015 1:00 pm

The Last 21 Stanley Cup Winners wrote:I am very confused as to why Quizbowl thinks the On-To-Ottawa Trek is the most important thing to happen in Canadian History.
ME TOO
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Tue May 19, 2015 1:21 pm

Tees-Exe Line wrote:
The Last 21 Stanley Cup Winners wrote:I am very confused as to why Quizbowl thinks the On-To-Ottawa Trek is the most important thing to happen in Canadian History.
ME TOO
I mean, I don't think it does, actually -- it just happens to have been tossed up pretty notably at hard tournaments twice over the past 5 years, and has some pretty readymade analogues in American history. If I had to earnestly figure out what Canadian history things quizbowl thinks are most important, I'd have a lot of other things way higher on the list.

This isn't an ironclad principle and has many exceptions of course, but I think feedback from people who earnestly learn about an area in-depth can be quite useful for helping the game of quizbowl focus on what matters in rough proportion to how it matters / burst "canon bubbles" where things come up just because they have come up. Insofar as this whole brouhaha helps us non-Canadians do that for Canadian content, that's a good thing.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Important Bird Area » Tue May 19, 2015 1:27 pm

Matthew J wrote:If I had to earnestly figure out what Canadian history things quizbowl thinks are most important, I'd have a lot of other things way higher on the list.
Lots of other things.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by minusfive » Tue May 19, 2015 1:30 pm

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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Tees-Exe Line » Tue May 19, 2015 1:37 pm

Matthew J wrote:This isn't an ironclad principle and has many exceptions of course, but I think feedback from people who earnestly learn about an area in-depth can be quite useful for helping the game of quizbowl focus on what matters in rough proportion to how it matters / burst "canon bubbles" where things come up just because they have come up. Insofar as this whole brouhaha helps us non-Canadians do that for Canadian content, that's a good thing.
This is opening a whole can of worms, probably ill-advisedly, but it would be great if some of this input could come from non-Liberals, and preferably from professional historians or those inclined to question the Liberal triumphalist narrative.

First of all, I don't appreciate Jordan's implication above that I don't know anything about Canadian history because I don't share his and Patrick's perspective on it. I will say as a matter of disclosure that one of the reasons this rankles is that one of my long parade of lifetime nemeses was a high school rival who gave a speech to the whole school on Trudeau's death about what a great man he was for making Canada a truly multicultural society. And I do actually think Trudeau was pretty great! But the pretense that Canada has no problems and is a light unto the world is atrociously false, as any number of people whose welfare is not taken into account in that narrative would be happy to explain.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by minusfive » Tue May 19, 2015 2:01 pm

Tees-Exe Line wrote:First of all, I don't appreciate Jordan's implication above that I don't know anything about Canadian history because I don't share his and Patrick's perspective on it.
Don't care/YOUR ARE WRONG/If the shoe fits. The history of Canada is (perhaps even disproportionately, given Canadians' penchant for introspection) out there; no one's trying to hide it from you. Read it; become good; I don't care any more than you care if I know the history of North Dakota. Whether you are good at Canadian history or not (I, and the other subject area experts here, are almost certainly better) is immaterial. If you want to write on lesser-known things like R.B. Bennett's Royal Commission on commerce and inequality (chaired by Lester Pearson, but since he's Liberal we won't mention him) go ahead, but that doesn't oblige anyone else to.
Tees-Exe Line wrote:This is opening a whole can of worms, probably ill-advisedly, but it would be great if some of this input could come from non-Liberals, and preferably from professional historians or those inclined to question the Liberal triumphalist narrative.
My TUs on Diefenbaker (a personal hero) and Brian Mulroney surprisingly (NOT!) weren't included in the packets I submitted to U.S. tournaments. So this isn't a thing, and is tantamount to saying "why aren't there more TUs on Obama that mention he's a Kenyan Muslim antichrist? Thanks a lot, liberals!" What you're trying to do is shift the focus from things that are historically important (Trudeau, whether you like it or not, Nobel Laureate Lester Pearson, and other such canon) to debates on why they were written (Liberals gonna getcha!). I wonder if you think people who write TUs on Maggie Thatcher have a Conservative bias regardless of what the question says.
Tees-Exe Line wrote:But the pretense that Canada has no problems and is a light unto the world is atrociously false, as any number of people whose welfare is not taken into account in that narrative would be happy to explain.
Yeah, we're not perfect. And Canadian history TUs that are well done include that (a reference to the attacks on indigenous culture and property, the "Mongrel Races" quotation of SJAM, or that Tommy Douglas advocated compulsory sterilization in his master's thesis). If you get some sort of North Korean style TU on "Make benefit glorious nation of Canada" feel free to drop this kind of invective against a developed (and in many ways, much better than the U.S.) country. None of those? Well, feel free to STFU then.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Rufous-capped Thornbill » Tue May 19, 2015 2:15 pm

I'm ok with risking a ban for meta posting to declare that this thread is horrible and filled with really bizarre opinions. Let's all read some Canadian history books instead of continuing the march into the Forbidden Zone.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by at your pleasure » Tue May 19, 2015 2:27 pm

So does someone actually have a good introductory book to Canadian history that is not A) awful whig history, B) duller than cottage cheese, or C) by Desmond Morton(which I have tried to read only to find it painfully, painfully boring)?
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by 1.82 » Tue May 19, 2015 2:41 pm

I will venture into this thread to note that in my readings on Canadian history (which I would like to think are not insignificant in scope) I have come across a certain tendency to view history in teleological terms. Given the domination of the Grits in the twentieth century, this is naturally tied up with Liberal ideology. In practical terms this manifests itself as underemphasis on the West, except in the limited cases where the West is relevant to Liberalism (Louis Riel being one example of this and Medicare perhaps another). I don't think it's a coincidence that historically few prominent federal Liberals have come from the West.

I'm not entirely sure I know what the quizbowl relevance of this is, but searching aseemsdb for "Aberhart" yields one result from 1998 and searching for "Ernest Manning" gives no results at all.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by grapesmoker » Tue May 19, 2015 3:09 pm

Matthew J wrote:This one time there was a bad question. I disliked it. People should write questions that aren't as bad as that one.
a bad question in quizbowl?! INCONCEIVABLE

oh my god this thread
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by bmcke » Tue May 19, 2015 3:39 pm

In before FZ.
Tees-Exe Line wrote: Usually it's a parade of Liberal triumphalism, teleological interpretations of confederation as a natural end, all identity conflict solved by Trudeau (until the recent appearance of the dread Harper), and a succession of potted "trials" like Red River gestured toward by way of glorifying the present.
I like and agree with this analysis, though I think all those biases are present in the Canadian history they teach in public schools (at least in Ontario). It was a bit awkward when some Quebec teams came to Ottawa for our NHBB championship and griped that their schools hadn't taught them any of this stuff -- they had learned history in an even smaller bubble of an even wackier kind of nationalism.

For Naveed's comment about omission of western Canada, we should remember that almost no one lived there until the 20th century. My usual gripe about CanCon is the relative absence of questions on Aboriginal history -- I try to address a bit whenever I have to edit something.
Last edited by bmcke on Tue May 19, 2015 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Tue May 19, 2015 3:41 pm

Assuming for the sake of argument that a persistent bias is even there: What should an aspiring question writer to do combat this alleged bias, given other concerns about accessibility, factual accuracy of clues, and keeping difficulty appropriate?
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Tue May 19, 2015 4:00 pm

I tend to think that clues in bonus parts only have a responsibility to convey sufficient information to answer the bonus part; i.e., the concerns Matt listed above. I don't buy that clue-selection alone can be offensive or "insulting." If that question had said "This stupid and unimportant military unit," a la Modern World, that would be one thing. But as it stands, I think you're putting unrealistic expectations on question writers if you demand that they eulogize their subjects.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by TheRhymeMinister » Tue May 19, 2015 5:00 pm

Tees-Exe Line wrote:This is opening a whole can of worms, probably ill-advisedly, but it would be great if some of this input could come from non-Liberals, and preferably from professional historians or those inclined to question the Liberal triumphalist narrative.
Try emailing Ezra[AT]EzraLevant[dot]com. I'm sure you two would both agree that reality has a well-known liberal bias.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by kayli » Tue May 19, 2015 5:14 pm

minusfive wrote:
Tees-Exe Line wrote:First of all, I don't appreciate Jordan's implication above that I don't know anything about Canadian history because I don't share his and Patrick's perspective on it.
Don't care/YOUR ARE WRONG/If the shoe fits. The history of Canada is (perhaps even disproportionately, given Canadians' penchant for introspection) out there; no one's trying to hide it from you. Read it; become good; I don't care any more than you care if I know the history of North Dakota. Whether you are good at Canadian history or not (I, and the other subject area experts here, are almost certainly better) is immaterial. If you want to write on lesser-known things like R.B. Bennett's Royal Commission on commerce and inequality (chaired by Lester Pearson, but since he's Liberal we won't mention him) go ahead, but that doesn't oblige anyone else to.
Tees-Exe Line wrote:This is opening a whole can of worms, probably ill-advisedly, but it would be great if some of this input could come from non-Liberals, and preferably from professional historians or those inclined to question the Liberal triumphalist narrative.
My TUs on Diefenbaker (a personal hero) and Brian Mulroney surprisingly (NOT!) weren't included in the packets I submitted to U.S. tournaments. So this isn't a thing, and is tantamount to saying "why aren't there more TUs on Obama that mention he's a Kenyan Muslim antichrist? Thanks a lot, liberals!" What you're trying to do is shift the focus from things that are historically important (Trudeau, whether you like it or not, Nobel Laureate Lester Pearson, and other such canon) to debates on why they were written (Liberals gonna getcha!). I wonder if you think people who write TUs on Maggie Thatcher have a Conservative bias regardless of what the question says.
Tees-Exe Line wrote:But the pretense that Canada has no problems and is a light unto the world is atrociously false, as any number of people whose welfare is not taken into account in that narrative would be happy to explain.
Yeah, we're not perfect. And Canadian history TUs that are well done include that (a reference to the attacks on indigenous culture and property, the "Mongrel Races" quotation of SJAM, or that Tommy Douglas advocated compulsory sterilization in his master's thesis). If you get some sort of North Korean style TU on "Make benefit glorious nation of Canada" feel free to drop this kind of invective against a developed (and in many ways, much better than the U.S.) country. None of those? Well, feel free to STFU then.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Benin Rebirth Party » Tue May 19, 2015 5:50 pm

bmcke wrote:In before FZ.
Tees-Exe Line wrote: Usually it's a parade of Liberal triumphalism, teleological interpretations of confederation as a natural end, all identity conflict solved by Trudeau (until the recent appearance of the dread Harper), and a succession of potted "trials" like Red River gestured toward by way of glorifying the present.
I like and agree with this analysis, though I think all those biases are present in the Canadian history they teach in public schools (at least in Ontario). It was a bit awkward when some Quebec teams came to Ottawa for our NHBB championship and griped that their schools hadn't taught them any of this stuff -- they had learned history in an even smaller bubble of an even wackier kind of nationalism.

For Naveed's comment about omission of western Canada, we should remember that almost no one lived there until the 20th century. My usual gripe about CanCon is the relative absence of questions on Aboriginal history -- I try to address a bit whenever I have to edit something.
We learned about Preston Manning, Bible Bill, and all that. Our grade 10 Canadian History class did talk about Trudeaumania a lot but did not exclude Bennett, Borden, Meighen, Mulroney, etc.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Cheynem » Tue May 19, 2015 6:11 pm

At the risk of sounding like a dufus, I feel like a lot of this comes down to writing better questions. The Lord Strathcona bonus, even at the time, seems obviously too hard and/or not written very elegantly. I'm interested in obviously trying to write questions that actually reflect what's important and what people know, but I also think we should be careful not to forget that:

a. most quizbowl questions are written for Americans who have a different view of what's notable in Canadian history presumably than most Canadians
b. trying to write quizbowl questions to avoid "bias" is sometimes a recipe for disaster, depending on the writer's skill and familiarity
c. it's difficult to make generalizations based on a few people's experiences. I actually bet I could a lot of American players who would claim that American history questions don't match what they learn in school--i.e., where's the string of Civil War battles, why don't we identify colonies more, etc. I'm all for trying to find different answerlines or clues that are cool, interesting, and gettable (and I think I do this a bit in my Canada focused questions), but we should be pretty careful in doing so.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Muriel Axon » Wed May 20, 2015 1:55 am

So what I gather from the Canadians' posts in this thread is that Canadian history is just a parade of prime ministers. That was what you intended, right?
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by bsmith » Wed May 20, 2015 8:27 am

I have taken a grand total of 4 months of Canadian history education in my life, so I am no expert. My only experience is writing replacements in IS sets for local tournaments, where I did my best to reflect all regions and political views of Canada from a balanced perspective.
Tees-Exe Line wrote:Usually it's a parade of Liberal triumphalism, teleological interpretations of confederation as a natural end, all identity conflict solved by Trudeau (until the recent appearance of the dread Harper), and a succession of potted "trials" like Red River gestured toward by way of glorifying the present. It's no wonder you still have Prince Charles leading your forces into battle, seeing how gloriously you carry forward the Whig tradition.
What you are calling "Liberal triumphalism" has been referred to as the "Laurentian Consensus", which is on the brink of political irrelevance now. The linked author suggests that, thanks to demographic changes in immigration and the middle class, Canada has recently (2011) shifted from a nation governed by the ideas of a Montreal/Toronto elite (Liberal/Progressive Conservative, until the 1993 election consolidated it to the Liberals) to a western populist view associated with Tommy Douglas (NDP) and Preston Manning (Reform/Conservative). The mythologies of Laurier, Trudeau, peacekeeping, and a constitution are being replaced with Macdonald, Diefenbaker, war remembrance, and the monarchy, though it will take time for the media and education (traditionally associated with Toronto and Liberals) to agree with this. The shift will arguably be complete if not even the Trudeau brand can save the Liberals in the next election.
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Preston Manning in a history class? Boy, I feel old now.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by otsasonr » Wed May 20, 2015 9:43 am

Muriel Axon wrote:So what I gather from the Canadians' posts in this thread is that Canadian history is just a parade of prime ministers. That was what you intended, right?
Oh come on. This thread is pretty full of misrepresentations on all sides, but don't just make things up. One post (Joe's above) is a listing of prime ministers, but that's because he's responding to the idea that the only prime minister we care about is Trudeau. So either you think that all of the other major Canadian figures mentioned in this thread by Canadians (like Preston Manning and Tommy Douglas) are also prime ministers, or you're jumping on one post to score points in this silly argument.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Wed May 20, 2015 9:44 am

bsmith wrote: Laurier, Trudeau, peacekeeping, and a constitution ... Macdonald, Diefenbaker, war remembrance, and the monarchy
Since all of these things are more or less neutrally represented quite frequently in quizbowl questions already I think I have the answer I need (which is that things are pretty much fine as answer selection goes, and should be made better by earnest reading of/engagement with Canadian history facts).
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by The Time Keeper » Wed May 20, 2015 11:02 am

kayli wrote: Boy you really missed the point.
Why don't you go ruin someone's funding about it.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Wed May 20, 2015 3:16 pm

otsasonr wrote:
Muriel Axon wrote:So what I gather from the Canadians' posts in this thread is that Canadian history is just a parade of prime ministers. That was what you intended, right?
Oh come on. This thread is pretty full of misrepresentations on all sides, but don't just make things up. One post (Joe's above) is a listing of prime ministers, but that's because he's responding to the idea that the only prime minister we care about is Trudeau. So either you think that all of the other major Canadian figures mentioned in this thread by Canadians (like Preston Manning and Tommy Douglas) are also prime ministers, or you're jumping on one post to score points in this silly argument.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Nabonidus » Wed May 20, 2015 4:26 pm

Regardless of who was or wasn't a prime minister, this whole thread makes me think that guy who said political and military history were overrepresented in quiz bowl was on to something.
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Re: your official Canadian cavalry regiment discussion threa

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Wed May 20, 2015 4:36 pm

Nabonidus wrote:Regardless of who was or wasn't a prime minister, this whole thread makes me think that guy who said political and military history were overrepresented in quiz bowl was on to something.
It's an inevitable consequence of the fact that social history is generally pretty hard to ask in ways that are both concrete/empirically factual (i.e. not matters of opinion) and actually likely to be known by people - especially those whose interest in history is primarily amateur as opposed to academic (see: most of quizbowl). Seven different overviews of Japanese history from the Jomon era to the present may cover completely different social, economic, and artistic developments, but I guarantee that you're going to hear about the Taika reform, Kamakura shogunate, Oda Nobunaga, and the Charter Oath in each one.

In general, quizbowl's been pretty good at working in social history into tossups with "political" history answerlines and I think this is completely fine. There's been plenty of reasonable attempts at exploring purely social history as well.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Tees-Exe Line » Wed May 20, 2015 4:59 pm

bsmith wrote:What you are calling "Liberal triumphalism" has been referred to as the "Laurentian Consensus", which is on the brink of political irrelevance now. The linked author suggests that, thanks to demographic changes in immigration and the middle class, Canada has recently (2011) shifted from a nation governed by the ideas of a Montreal/Toronto elite (Liberal/Progressive Conservative, until the 1993 election consolidated it to the Liberals) to a western populist view associated with Tommy Douglas (NDP) and Preston Manning (Reform/Conservative). The mythologies of Laurier, Trudeau, peacekeeping, and a constitution are being replaced with Macdonald, Diefenbaker, war remembrance, and the monarchy, though it will take time for the media and education (traditionally associated with Toronto and Liberals) to agree with this. The shift will arguably be complete if not even the Trudeau brand can save the Liberals in the next election.
Thanks! That article was interesting, and though I think some of it is far-fetched over-interpretation of recent political events as demonstrating profound cultural, social, and economic shifts, the irrelevance of a self-congratulatory center-left consensus is certainly not unique to Canada.

UPDATE:

Although it directly follows a favorable quotation of Walter Russell Mead, I thought these paragraphs about the larger point were quite apt:
For we are each of us a great jumble of values, beliefs and intuitions, too often bending the facts to fit our world view and then declaring our conclusions to be the only ones that are reasonable. My reasoning is your belief is his prejudice.

Which is simply to say that those who believe the great dichotomy between the Laurentian Consensus and the Conservative Coalition is that the former descends from the Enlightenment, while the latter originated in shamanistic rituals of nomadic invaders, should think again.

We are all masses of prejudice, we are all creatures of passion, we all twist the facts to suit our predispositions and then call that truth. If you are upset with the Conservatives, ask yourself: Am I upset because I am smart and they are stupid, and the stupid are in charge? Do I truly reason from facts while they feed on base instincts? Is this simply a question of right versus wrong? Or has it something to do with the fact that my view, my city, the consensus to which I belong, is in eclipse?
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by Taper or die. Can you do any less? » Wed May 20, 2015 11:41 pm

Tees-Exe Line wrote: the irrelevance of a self-congratulatory center-left consensus is certainly not unique to Canada.
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Re: CO History 2015

Post by p-vs-vp » Wed May 20, 2015 11:42 pm

The grandmother is {wise, dead}. wrote:
Tees-Exe Line wrote: the irrelevance of a self-congratulatory center-left consensus is certainly not unique to Canada.
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Re: Click Here to Become Sad

Post by theMoMA » Thu May 21, 2015 12:24 pm

I'm not really sure why various folks (including whichever board staffer changed this thread's title) who don't seem to have a stake in this discussion continue to act as though it is an affront to quizbowl decency that various people have voiced their opinions about Canadian history in this thread. (The reaction against "lede-in," an actual affront to quizbowl decency and perhaps the most offensive Canadianism south of "pack s," I can understand.)

There is a confusing attitude among some quizbowlers that appears to take the form of something like "oh god people are disagreeing everything is terrible." I think our disagreements about how information is presented in the game is great, because it exposes perhaps overlooked perspectives on what is important, and how familiar topics like Canadian history can evolve to be brought more into line with what those who are informed about the subject know and care about.

I have no particular dog (or horse) in this fight, but I've found the thread informative, both from a historical/historiographic and a practical, quizbowl-oriented perspective, despite some needless needling and bombast. On the historical side, the politics of western Canada and groups outside of the "Laurentian consensus" appear to be legitimately interesting topics that are perhaps somewhat overlooked, or if not, at least worth knowing about. On the practical side, Bruce, Matt J., Matt B., and Mike have all made helpful points. Maybe the rest of us can just follow along instead of getting freaked out that educated people disagree about a thing.
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Re: Click Here to Become Sad

Post by Ike » Thu May 21, 2015 5:08 pm

theMoMA wrote:I'm not really sure why various folks (including whichever board staffer changed this thread's title) who don't seem to have a stake in this discussion continue to act as though it is an affront to quizbowl decency that various people have voiced their opinions about Canadian history in this thread. (The reaction against "lede-in," an actual affront to quizbowl decency and perhaps the most offensive Canadianism south of "packets," I can understand.)

There is a confusing attitude among some quizbowlers that appears to take the form of something like "oh god people are disagreeing everything is terrible." I think our disagreements about how information is presented in the game is great, because it exposes perhaps overlooked perspectives on what is important, and how familiar topics like Canadian history can evolve to be brought more into line with what those who are informed about the subject know and care about.

I have no particular dog (or horse) in this fight, but I've found the thread informative, both from a historical/historiographic and a practical, quizbowl-oriented perspective, despite some needless needling and bombast. On the historical side, the politics of western Canada and groups outside of the "Laurentian consensus" appear to be legitimately interesting topics that are perhaps somewhat overlooked, or if not, at least worth knowing about. On the practical side, Bruce, Matt J., Matt B., and Mike have all made helpful points. Maybe the rest of us can just follow along instead of getting freaked out that educated people disagree about a thing.
I don't think the issue is about educated people disagreeing, just the amount of energy and time that "specialists" went into discussing what seems to be an incredibly minor part of the quizbowl distribution.

More generally, I'm willing to bet that every portion of the quizbowl distribution is not representative of the way Things Are. Computer Science - my major, is mishandled in quizbowl. But I don't come on here to make long tirades about it because 1.) there's much more important things to get right in quizbowl and 2.) the amount of people who have the energy and time to listen and rectify All The Problems With Computer Science is very few. Much in the same way that we got sick of the music mafia about things not being perfect, I think most people don't really want to read endless posts about Canadian history, computer science, etc.

Personally speaking, since the Strathcona question, I think I have written only two Canadian History questions, one of which is on, amusingly the Pacific Scandal, so I don't know when's the next time I'm going to use this thread for anything relevant. Ironically, due to the amount of sarcasm / I don't know that much, I can't tell if the question I wrote is this-thread-approved though I distinctly remember there not being that many clues for the Pacific Scandal.

I'll also add in that I think half-full approach to minor subdistributions in quizbowl is the way to approach it: don't expect questions to be perfect at any tournament you go to, be delighted when they are. Send a thank you note to the writer, discuss what they got right in post tournament discussion afterwards. I think that's a much more palatable way of spreading your point and getting people to actually care.

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Re: Click Here to Become Sad

Post by bmcke » Thu May 21, 2015 9:10 pm

This is its own thread and not the hijacking of a tournament discussion. I'm just here because I like the conversation. You could move it to off-topic even.

That John Ibbitson article made me pretty angry. Drink every time he says "urban elites."
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Re: Click Here to Become Sad

Post by theMoMA » Fri May 22, 2015 10:54 am

Ike, I don't share your fatalism about subject discussion. It is certainly very annoying when specialized complaints overshadow general discussion after every tournament, as was the case with the music mafia imbroglio some years back. But as Brendan said, this isn't a tournament discussion; it's just a thread where people are discussing a thing, and that thing happens to be the history of Canada.

I've personally found similar single-subject threads enlightening and very rewarding to follow (including the thread introducing John's guide to writing music questions, which was perhaps the single most useful resource for writing questions in any one subject area). If you were to begin such a thread to discuss why computer science questions are not ideally written, I would be glad to read your thoughts, and others'.
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Re: Click Here to Become Sad

Post by minusfive » Fri May 22, 2015 12:14 pm

I remember I wrote a 25(ish?)/0 Canadiana pack for CLEAR at Rutgers in December; as it was for people who didn't study Canadian history and stuff it's a little rudimentary (for Canadians especially), and should only take >10 minutes to read over/play, but if anyone is interested, PM me and I'll send it to you.
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