2018 Missouri Classic
Judging Philosophy Book

Mark Bentley - Appalachian State University

Saved Philosophy:

Mark Bentley, Appalachian State University

Section 1: General Information

I approach debate as an academic exercise with critical rhetorical implications. I vote on arguments, not people. I will not vote for a team based upon personal characteristics they were born with or somehow acquired. I do not consider myself capable of judging the merits of an individual's narrative, and I am not generally disposed to personal narratives (that I cannot verify, and am not willing to dismiss) used as competitive leverage to win a ballot. I believe the debate space should be about critiquing ideas, not attacking people.

I really like specific, well run critical debates. They are my favorite, but I'm also totally good with non-critical arguments. So, if critical arguments are not your thing, don't feel like you have to run them in front of me or I won't vote for you. I vote for plenty of non-critical arguments. Likewise, just because you run a critical argument doesn't mean I'm automatically going to vote for you.

I evaluate arguments in whatever framework I am presented with, as long as it's warranted (don't just tell me something is important, tell me why it's important). I usually do not vote on defense alone, and prefer offensive arguments on positions rather than just defensive. When weighing arguments, I default to weighing probability over magnitude and timeframe, but I will weigh them differently if you tell me why.

I have a rather high threshold for spec arguments and need to see clearly articulated in-round abuse, or I will not vote on them. This usually manifests itself as obvious underspecified, groundshift-ready plan situations. Spec arguments generally function best for me as link insurance for other positions. Asking questions are a must when running spec arguments (also, as a general rule, answer at least some questions). Generally, the Neg gets 1 conditional advocacy and the status quo. I am willing to vote on conditionality with multiple conditional advocacies. However, even if an argument is kicked, its rhetoric has already been introduced into the round and I still consider valid link access to that rhetoric.

I tend to protect against new arguments in the rebuttals, but like POOís called when whoeverís giving the rebuttal thinks theyíre getting away with sneaking new arguments in.  I tend to protect the PMR against arguments suddenly blown up in the MO, and the opposition from arguments suddenly blown up in the PMR.

Section 2: Specific Inquiries  

Please describe your approach to the following.

1. Speaker points (what is your typical speaker point range or average speaker points given)?

          25-30. 27-30 is my typical range, 25 and below is for really bad speeches a/o abusive individuals.

2.  How do you approach critically framed arguments? Can affirmatives run critical arguments? Can critical arguments be ďcontradictoryĒ with other negative positions?

I definitely prefer critical arguments that are ďgrounded in the specificityĒ of the resolution, over generic, over-run kritiks (if your criticism is as important as you say, you can certainly link to and specifically engage with any res/arguments the other team runs). I will vote on permutations and theoretical objections. I also give weight to performative contradiction arguments as deficits to solvency (or however else you would like to use them). I get bored with highly generic kritiks. I will also vote on topicality for nontopical Aff Kís (again, if the issue is that important, it's also embedded in the resolution). That said, I really like critical arguments when theyíre not generic and the ideas are clearly articulated. Explain your ideas instead of just throwing terms around. Sure, I may know what the terms mean, but I need to know how you are using them to determine the functionality of the argument. I also think itís important to not only tell me the importance of (or need for) the interrogation or deconstruction the criticism engages in, but also why should we engage with THIS specific interrogation/deconstruction and what, if anything, it seeks to solve, resolve, change, etc. In other words, donít drop or omit solvency of the criticism. Also, donít give blanket blips of ďalt solves allĒ because, no, it doesnít. I understand that argument as a game piece, but if your advocacy is worth voting for you need to have more analysis than that. Use solvency as a way to justify the need for the criticism through analysis of what it actually does.

 

3.   Projects and performance based argumentsÖ

I donít tend to find "performance based arguments" particularly persuasive, and arenít really my thing. Unfortunately, I think the structure (meaning actual structure like speech times, speech order, ballots, win/loss, number of judges, etc.; not white, sexist, cis-centric, etc. structures) of the debate space and inherent competitive nature of the exercise is too constricting and self-defined to allow for "performance" solvency. The way "performative arguments" are often run makes it too easy for the other team to non-unique the "performance" with links to existing power structures/discourses/performances. I donít buy arguments that your in-round "performance" solved for more than what it might have in the immediate context (if you advocate for suspending the illusion of the debate world). I also hold that the act of debating, criticizing, and advocating itself is a performance, and so you will need to do extra work to justify how and why yours is extra unique. I do think "performance" as critical metaphor can have access to rhetorical solvency, but it's harder for me to access literal solvency.

For "projects": I have and will vote for "projects" that engage with the topic of the resolution and the other teamís arguments. I will not vote for a team based upon personal characteristics they were born with or obtained. Avoid debates about the personal characteristics of the people in the room. This leads to bad things for lots of reasons. As I've said, I am not in a position to be the arbiter of personal narrative validity, and really dislike being in that position. There is so much we don't know about everybody involved in this activity, I have no right to decide what somebody is/isn't and I don't think you do either. By all means, PLEASE indict rhetoric, but not individuals in the round. If you place me in a position to judge the validity of an individual's personal narrative, at best I will ignore your arguments putting me in that position.

4.   Topicality. What do you require to vote on topicality? Is in-round abuse necessary? Do you require competing interpretations?

I tend to weigh topicality through competing interpretations (make them clear what they are), but a clear ďwe meetĒ by the Aff can also be sufficient if itís obvious. I prefer specific ground abuse stories when voting on topicality, though they donít have to always be ďarticulated in-roundĒ abuse.

5. Counterplans -- PICs good or bad? Should opp identify the status of the counterplan? Perms -- textual competition ok? functional competition?

I tend to view most counterplans as theoretically legitimate and like to leave it up to the debaters to determine what is or is not legitimate in the given round. I donít like delay counterplans, and will not be likely to vote on a PIC when the resolution calls for a specific plan action on the part of the affirmative. I am open to voting for a PIC bad argument. Neg should also give CP status.

6.   Is it acceptable for teams to share their flowed arguments with each other during the round (not just their plans)

Yeah, I donít really care what you share...but that also doesnít mean you donít have to flow and just use the other teamís flows. Also, I don't think teams are necessarily under any sort of obligation to share their flows with the other team, but this can also be contextually dependent.

7.   In the absence of debaters' clearly won arguments to the contrary, what is the order of evaluation that you will use in coming to a decision (e.g. do procedural issues like topicality precede kritiks which in turn precede cost-benefit analysis of advantages/disadvantages, or do you use some other ordering?)?

First off, you should definitely tell me which order I should evaluate and why. If you havenít, this usually tells me you havenít done your job. I usually evaluate Kís and Tís, then impact calculus. As stated above, I default to weighing probability over magnitude and timeframe.

8.   How do you weigh arguments when they are not explicitly weighed by the debaters or when weighting claims are diametrically opposed? How do you compare abstract impacts (i.e. "dehumanization") against concrete impacts (i.e. "one million deaths")?

Again, if it gets to this point, you havenít done your job and I wonít be real happy, and you probably wonít be happy with my decision. I donít automatically weigh death more than dehumanization, but can go either way based on the context and arguments. Well warranted impacts are always preferred over poorly warranted ones.




Korick Sisomphone - Appalachian State University

Saved Philosophy:

Section 1: General Information 

I debated for 2 years at Appalachian State University. I am now the Assistant Debate Coach for App. Debate is game so have fun and learn! 

Section 2: Specific Inquiries 

1. 1. Speaker points (what is your typical speaker point range or average speaker points given.

Typically give the top speaker 29 points and then 28, 27, 26 for the rest of the debaters accordingly. Exceptional performances will be awarded with 30 points. I typically think the best speaker in the round was the most strategic, had the most clever/creative arguments, was very clear and articulate (especially at speed), etc. 

1. 2. How do you approach critically framed arguments? Can affirmatives run critical arguments? Can critical arguments be ďcontradictoryĒ with other negative positions?

I love criticisms! I personally think that even when running a policy case it should be critically framed. I'm decently well versed in critical literature, but a clear and well explained thesis can go a long way for both me and the other team. 

Yes aff k's are totally fine. I do believe that they have to be topical and it would some strong justification and framing to convince me otherwise. I don't think it's terribly hard to do the research and link the res to your criticism, so please do. 

I don't really think any argument should contradict another argument you plan on running and I feel the same about k's. Be consistent in your advocacy. 

1. 3. Performance based argumentsÖ

So in the end I'll evaluate whatever argument I'm presented with, but if performance based arguments are your thing, I might not be the best judge for you. 

1. 4. Topicality. What do you require to vote on topicality? Is in-round abuse necessary? Do you require competing interpretations? 

For me to vote on topicality I would prefer to have clear articulated abuse. In the end though I'll evaluate the arguments that I get, articulated or potential. T's should have an interp, violation, standards, impacts, and voters. I evaluate procedurals before any other argument. 

1. 5. Counterplans -- PICs good or bad? Should opp identify the status of the counterplan? Perms -- textual competition ok? functional competition?

PICs are bad, but the other team has to call them out with a full pics bad argument (interp, vio, standards, impacts blah blah). If the other team lets it slide I'll happily pull the trigger on a PIC. 

Please disclose the status of your counterplan. 

I'm not a real fan of textual competition. CPs should be functionally competitive. 

1. 6. Is it acceptable for teams to share their flowed arguments with each other during the round (not just their plans)

Sure  

1. 7. In the absence of debaters' clearly won arguments to the contrary, what is the order of evaluation that you will use in coming to a decision (e.g. do procedural issues like topicality precede kritiks which in turn precede cost-benefit analysis of advantages/disadvantages, or do you use some other ordering?)?

Procedurals, kritiks, everything else. Unless there are arguments telling me to do otherwise, then that is my default. 

1. 8. How do you weight arguments when they are not explicitly weighed by the debaters or when weighting claims are diametrically opposed? How do you compare abstract impacts (i.e. "dehumanization") against concrete impacts (i.e. "one million deaths")?

The more warranted argument will beat a less warranted argument. 

I typically prefer systemic impacts. Dehuminization will typically outweigh mass death. But if told to evaluate otherwise I totally will. 

My default impact calculus is probability > time frame > magnitude, unless told to do otherwise. 




Aaron Alford - Appalachian State University

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Jennifer Clauson - Cedarville University

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Brent Nicholson - McKendree University

Saved Philosophy:

Big Picture

Debate is, first and foremost, a rhetorical and social game. That doesn't mean it isn't important or that it doesn't affect the ďreal world.Ē All that means is that it's a construct with a set of rules that allows us to do a structured activity where one team wins and the other loses. My favorite thing to see in a debate round is people who are passionate (or appear to be passionate) about their advocacy (or lack thereofólet the squo work for you). Basically, if you play hard and engage the debate to the best of your ability I'm going to appreciate you for that.

            I'm not sure I've ever seen a form or style of debate that isn't valuable in some way. Most of the problems I have with debate activities and styles of debate stem from the way people handle them. That blame almost always falls on coaches, not competitors. I think that value and fact debate could be and sometimes are good styles of debate. I feel the same way about ďperformativeĒ and ďnon-traditionalĒ arguments. I've seen excellent debates from all camps and I'm really okay with and interested in almost anything at this point.

            However, I really like it when prep matters. I like that we have a resolution that both teams get and they talk about that. When one team talks about anything that is not the resolution (or the aff), it can have a negative effect on the round. I hate debates that prioritize the element of surprise as opposed to quality argument as a means of winning. I know it's easy and I was guilty of it too, but at some point, it says a lot about you as a competitor if you're willing to publicly own your strategies and just be better than the competition.

 

Quick Points

-Deploy the strategy that will best help you win, even if I don't enjoy it, your chances are better with whatever you feel comfortable with.

-Jokes and personalities are nice. They make me like listening to and judging you. Debate isn't a robot activity, be yourself and see what happens.
-Condo is good

-Ks are fine, they're better with specific references to the aff.
-Theory is wildly underutilized. I have a high threshold for voting on MG theory.

-Performance debate is awesome Ė but it should still have some grounding in the topic. Framework to answer performative arguments isn't the best strat, but it is a strat.
-Give your opponents the benefit of the doubt. Their arguments are likely better than you think they are.
-Please, answer each others' arguments. If neither team engages with the substance of the other team's strategy, I will be an unhappy camper.

 

Aff Teams

I wholeheartedly believe that the affirmative team should defend the fiated implementation of a topical plan text if it improves their chances of winning the debate. In other words, do whatever you think benefits you most in the PMC. Please, stake out your ground and be defend it. The affirmative should be cohesive, but diverse enough to allow a wide range of answers in the MG. I love affs with hidden tricks and arguments that appear useless until extended. Read two advantage to policy affs or be prepared to answer counterplans with some good offense. I'm fine with almost every aff strategy I have seen that has been related, in some way, to the topic. If you read a fiated plan text and claim other impacts based on the performative aspect of the aff, your aff is likely conditional. I don't think that is good for neg ground and you should likely avoid doing this in front of me.

 

Neg Teams

I think wide LOCs featuring multiple unique strategies are in the best interest of the negative team. Unless you say otherwise, Iíll assume any negative advocacy is conditional. With that said, I prefer deep, case focused debate when possible Ė regardless of the type of aff it is. My favorite debates to participate in and watch have always been about the case and its intricacies. I donít expect you to answer case exclusively, but you should have some meaningful answers and some of them should be offense. Defense does not win debates, but it does mitigate the risk of impacts and give you a better chance to win the round. A diverse LOC will make for better debates and increase your chances of winning.

 

Flowing
None of this has changed since I started judging, except that I've recently switched back to flowing on paper. So, if you've had me as a judge before, you shouldn't really need this info. It's really only for the people who are having me judge them for the first time.  

            I flow on paper because I feel like it gives me an idea of what the competitors can flow and keeps me engaged in the debate. One significant difference that has led me to make different decisions than other judges I have been on panels with is that I think the distinction between ďpagesĒ in a debate is totally arbitrary. I am open to the idea that arguments implicitly interact with each other. The extent of that interaction is something I will still evaluate if that interaction happens in the LOR/PMR. I won't, however, exclude heg arguments from solving another war scenario (for example), simply because the MG doesn't explicitly cross-apply them.

            In terms of my actually flowing, I start at the top left and flow arguments straight down, separated by dashes and lines. It has never failed me. That does mean I don't number arguments, but if you extend your #6, I can go back and find that after the round. However, a good extension would also explain that argument and why it matters, making the number irrelevant. I flow answers the same way, starting next to the most recent speech and straight down. Even if you say you will answer links, then impacts, then uniqueness. I will flow it all straight down.

            I flow criticisms on one page in the order the argument is read. I flow every answer to a criticism in a straight line starting at the top of the page. I don't jump from Alt to Links to Impacts if that's what the MG or MO does. If you want me to flow theory objections separately (this goes for counterplan answers too), you should make that very clear. My instinct is to flow theory on the page it answers like I flow everything else.

           

 

Impact Calculus

I always vote on numbers-based magnitude claims absent impact calculus by debaters. This seems to me to be the only way I can make a decision that is not biased by my own thoughts about timeframe or probability, because it is based entirely on a quantitative claim as opposed to qualitative ones. I would prefer debates that are about probable impacts, especially ones that will happen quickly as a result of the plan. However, I understand the strategic importance of high magnitude impacts and would encourage you to deploy a mixture of impacts in your strategies.

            Debaters tend to believe that I prefer magnitude claims for some personal reason. In reality, I think probability and timeframe (in that order) are the most important forms of impact calc. My problems largely come when debaters fail to discuss in comparative detail the probability or timeframes of the impacts in the debate. Impact calculus should always be comparative, but going for probability or timeframe forces you to do more comparison.

 

Theory

I view all theory as a matter of competing interpretations. I don't need ďproven abuseĒ to vote on theory. I don't need counter-interps in all instances. If the aff team says conditionality is bad, I see no reason the neg team should have to read a counter-interp to impact turn that argument. Condo good and defense is likely sufficient. That is not true in all instances, if you don't have robust answers to theory, a counter-interp can do well to solve some or all of your opponents offense.

            I will vote for theory before I vote for substantive issues. On that note, I have a lot of concerns about the way that non-topical critical aff teams answer theory. I have trouble imagining a round where I would allow the aff to say the PMC (by itself) outweighs theory. If the theory argument objects to the reading of the PMC, then the neg winning theory seems to me to preclude the PMC from being evaluated. Obviously, this is up for debate and I think dealing with these concerns in a round would probably yield a great theory debate. That does not preclude the aff team from reading other critiques of T, I just think it means the aff itself may not a DA to T on face.

            The likelihood that I will vote for generic spec arguments is negligible. You'd be better off to just use cross-ex or points of information to get a link than to waste your time on that. And, if your link is tenuous enough that you need to read spec to protect it, you may want to reconsider that link argument in prep.

 

Topicality

I have a few specific thoughts on topicality that are unique from the rest of my thoughts on theory. Topicality is, to me, a question of what the debate should be about, whereas other theory is typically a question of how the debate should be done. I have no issue with teams reading topicality as part of an LOC that answers a critical/non-policy aff, but I do think that the aff has some ability to interpret the topic. As long as the aff has a defense of how their argument is about and/or in the same direction as the topic, then I am unlikely to vote on T against those affs.

            A topicality interpretation should allow some aff ground. If there is not a topical aff and the MG points that out, I'm unlikely to vote neg on T. I don't think reasonability is a good weighing mechanism for parli debates. It seems absurd that I should be concerned about the outcomes of future debates with this topic when there will be none or very few and far between.
            At topic area tournaments, I am far more likely to vote on topicality. That does not mean that you can't be untopical, it just means you need good answers. I am also open to sketchier T interps if they make sense. For instance, if you say that the aff must be effectually topical, I may vote for this argument. Keep in mind, however, that these arguments run the risk of your opponent answering them well and you gaining nothing and looking silly.

 

Speaker Points

I will give you speaker points for strategies and arguments I like. I will take away speaker points for strategies and arguments I don't like. If you do well, even if I don't like your strategy, you'll get better than average points (about 27.7). Use the Quick Points to get an idea what I like. LO points will be weighted in favor of the LOR, PM points in favor of the PMR. If you don't collapse in the block or PMR, that will not go well for your points.

            If you want to argue with my decision, go ahead. If you're wrong and you keep pushing, I'm going to tank your speaker points. If you're right, I'm going to feel really bad and think about what I've done. You can decide if that's worth it to you.




Zach Schneider - McKendree University

Saved Philosophy:

Hi! Iím Zach. I debated for 5 years of NPDA/NPTE parli (4 at Cedarville University and 1 at SIU) and this is my third year coaching/judging. I aim to remove my argumentative preferences from the debate as much as possible and allow you to advance whatever strategy you think is best. Iím involved in debate because I love the activity and I want to judge you regardless of what style you prefer. With that said, I wouldn't be in debate if I didn't have opinions, so hopefully this philosophy helps you figure out if mine align with yours.

2017-18 Addendum

         I felt the need to add this after Jewell, since it seems to be a popular trend and might meaningfully implicate your aff strategy. I am perfectly fine with "traditional" MG theory (condo, PICs bad, etc -- see below for more specifics) but I take a very dim view of MGs that have started reading 2-3 "theoretical objections" which are usually just recycled bad arguments tagged with an interp and framed as a (warrantless) reason to reject the team. My threshold for these positions is similar to my threshold for RVIs or spec, i.e. it's almost certainly a waste of your time to even read it. On this issue and in general, you will get higher speaks and be more likely to win my ballot if you resist the temptation to run away from the substance of the debate.

Quick Hits

         As a competitor, I debated a variety of strategies, about 2/3 policy and 1/3 critical. On the critical side of things, Iíve spent a lot of time in debates reading Nietzsche, DNG, Wilderson, and disability based positions.

         As a judge, I've watched a ton of K debates. I haven't figured out whether this is because parli has shifted substantially leftwards or because something in my philosophy screams K hack. In case it's the latter, I figured I'd explicitly note that I'm super down for case debate, disads and counterplans, impact turning the kritik, etc. At most tournaments last year I found myself pining for some sound basics rather than yet another mediocre K shell.

         Iím fairly predisposed to believe that the affirmative should defend the resolution (not necessarily fiat) via a topical plan or advocacy. I also think most teams aren't great at going for framework and I'm often uncompelled and/or bored by generic framework arguments. Do with that what you will.

         I cannot evaluate arguments that I don't flow (literally; I have ADHD and I've long forgotten them by the end of the debate). I'm happy to listen to your speech in whatever form it takes, but if you don't want it flowed and you also care about competitive success, it's in both of our best interests that you strike me.

         Tech > truth. Debate is a competitive game composed of moving argumentative pieces that are only occasionally indicative of reality. It's your job to identify the faulty (factually incorrect) pieces and tell me to disregard them.

         Generally, speed is good. Don't use speed to make people hate the activity and/or to punish novices for being novices. Enunciate; if I clear you, you probably need to be clearer, not slower.

         I keep stats on all the rounds I judge in a Google doc10 to provide some data on how I actually tend to vote in different kinds of debates.

         Per the Google doc, my speaker points average just a shade under 28, with a standard deviation of about 0.6 points (aka about 68% of the time you'll get between a 27.4 and 28.6) and a range between the high 26's and low 29's.

Offense/defense

         Offense wins championships, but smart defense is underutilized. I am quite willing to assess terminal defense/no risk of something. I generally evaluate defense as either probability (arguments that the impact is unlikely - e.g. MAD checks) or possibility (it is structurally impossible for the impact to happen - e.g. Brazil cannot launch a nuclear first strike because they do not have nuclear weapons). If you concede your impact is impossible, I will assess 0 risk of it. If you concede your impact is improbable, I will compare the strength of the two claims and decide how much risk to assess (or, ideally, you do this comparison for me in a rebuttal).

Disads

         Intrinsic, specific, well-sourced, big-stick disads are beautiful to watch. I've never been mad at a heg debate. Use words like timeframe, magnitude, and probability in the rebuttal to contextualize your disad to the affirmative.

         "Extend the defense" is not an argument, please take the five seconds to say "extend MAD checks nuclear war" or whatever. I am often enamored of affirmatives that exploit lazy kicking of disads.

         Compelling politics disads require a robust description of the status quo (both the bill/process that the disad is centered around, and the motivations that hold the status quo together) as well as a coherent link to the affirmative. I find that the best politics disads are top-heavy, while the ones that give politics a bad reputation have few/blippy uniqueness/link arguments stuck on top of a big impact.

Counterplans

         Counterplans can be a useful component of a negative strategy, but you should definitely let the squo work for you early and often.

         PICs are good unless the topic is a whole bill or (maybe) permits only one topical affirmative. Agent CPs are good. Consult is fine if accompanied by a compelling argument that consult is not normal means.

         Delay, veto cheato, object/utopian fiat, and whatever other obviously cheater CPs people come up with are bad (which isn't to say I won't vote for them if the aff doesn't answer it correctly/read theory).

         Text comp is an artificial standard that has never made much sense to me. You're better off reading PICs bad or other, more specific theory.

T

         I default to evaluating the debate through competing interpretations. Feel free to advance another framework, but I think Iíve yet to hear a credible justification (or even definition) for reasonability.

         The affirmative should lose every debate if they fail to read either a "we meet" or a competitive counterinterpretation to T. I do not require "in-round abuse" to vote on T.

         T is always a voting issue and never a reverse voting issue; the aff does not get to win because they were topical.

Other theory

         To quote Cory Freivogel: "[Spec] arguments are really not my cup of tea. This is mostly because I donít like giant pieces of shit in my tea."

         One condo advocacy is probably fine. My threshold for voting on condo drops substantially for 2+ condo advocacies and/or if you read arguments that double turn each other (e.g. conditional cap K and econ disad).

The K

         I love the K debate. I went for the K in about a third of my negative rounds and occasionally on the aff as well. A knowledgeable, deep MO going for a specific K with strong, intrinsic links to the affirmative is one of my favorite speeches to watch.

         I donít automatically let the aff weigh their aff. The aff should defend why the aff should be weighed, which usually involves defenses of consequentialism, threat response, scenario planning, and/or empiricism.

         Iím often suspicious of alternative solvency, particularly "alt solves the aff" claims -- but many affirmatives lose debates simply because they donít answer arguments. Tags like ____ comes first/is a prior question, no value to life, root cause of violence, or alt solves the aff should be setting off alarm bells if youíre giving the MG.

         The permutation is always a test of competition and never an advocacy. You get a perm in a "methods debate." Specific permutation net benefits are always more compelling than your memorized generic block.

Identity based/performance/not-about-the-topic positions

         As I mentioned at the top, I am fairly predisposed to believe the affirmative should defend the topic. Even if you read the same position in every round, adapting it to the specific context of the topic will help you a lot in front of me.

         When reading or answering framework, comparative impact analysis of the standards and counterstandards is important to me; for that reason, I think the best framework shells function as disads to the method of the 1AC and/or net benefits to policymaking. As a debater, I essentially thought of framework as a counterplan/countermethod of policymaking, contrasted with the method/advocacy of the 1AC; I thus often find arguments that "there's a topical version of the aff with a net benefit" (topic education, policymaking good, etc.) to be compelling.

         Outside of framework, I think reading a countermethod, a PIC out of some portion of the affirmative's advocacy, or even just case turns can all be effective strategies. I think reading your memorized panic K is often a less effective strategy.




Joe Blasdel - McKendree University

Saved Philosophy:

Joe Blasdel

McKendree University

Section 1: General Information

1. I competed in parliamentary debate and individual events from 1996 to 2000 for McKendree University.  After a three year hiatus studying political science at Syracuse University, I returned to coach at McKendree (NPDA, LD, and IEs) and have been doing so for the last eleven years.

2. In a typical policy debate, I tend to evaluate arguments in a comparative advantage framework (rather than stock issues).  I am unlikely to vote on inherency or purely defensive arguments.

3. On trichotomy, I tend to think the government has the right to run what type of case they want as long as they can defend the topicality of their choice.  While I donít see a lot of good fact/value debate, I am open to people choosing to do so.  Iím also okay with people turning fact or value resolutions into policy debates. For me, these sorts of arguments are always better handled as questions of topicality.

4. If there are new arguments in rebuttals, I will discount them, even if no point of order is raised.  The rules permit you to raise POOs, but you should use them with discretion.  If youíre calling multiple POOs, I will probably not be pleased.

5. I do not think the rules permit splitting the block.  Any responses in the LOR to MG arguments that were dropped by the MO will be considered new.  Additionally, it is rare that I will vote on MO arguments that are not extended in the LOR.

6. Iím not a fan of making warrantless assertions in the LOC/MG and then explaining/warranting them in the MO/PMR.  I tend to give the PMR a good deal of latitude in answering these Ďnewí arguments and tend to protect the opposition from these Ďnewí PMR arguments.

7. I think people should take questions Ė at least one and preferably two per speech.  If you donít take questions, I will reduce your speaker points and may be inclined to vote on a procedural if one is run.

8. There is no prep time in parliamentary debate.  You can get your papers in order, but you cannot strategize with your partner after the previous speech has ended.  If you steal prep, I will start your speech time.

Section 2: Specific Inquiries

1. Speaker points (what is your typical speaker point range or average speaker points given).

Typically, my range of speaker points is 25-30, with an average of 27.5.

2. How do you approach critically framed arguments? Can affirmatives run critical arguments? Can critical arguments be ďcontradictoryĒ with other negative positions?

Iím open to Ks but I tend to vote against them more than I vote for them.  I look at Ks as a sort of ideological counterplan.  As a result, itís important to me that you have a clear, competitive, and solvent alternative.  I think critical affirmatives are fine so long as they are topical.  If they are not topical, I will likely be voting on topicality. As for whether Ks can contradict other arguments in the round, it depends on the context/nature of the K.

3. Performance based argumentsÖ

Same as above.  Iíd be hesitant to run them with me as your critic.

4. Topicality. What do you require to vote on topicality? Is in-round abuse necessary? Do you require competing interpretations?

Having a specific abuse story is important to winning topicality, but not always necessary.  A specific abuse story does not necessarily mean linking out of a position thatís run Ė it means identifying a particular argument that the affirmative excludes AND why that argument should be negative ground.  I view topicality through a competing interpretations framework Ė Iím not sure what a reasonable interpretation is. On topicality, I have an Ďaverageí threshold.  I donít vote on RVIs.

On spec, I have a Ďhighí threshold.  Unless there is in-round ground abuse, Iím probably not going to vote on spec.  I would only run spec arguments in front of me if youíre using it as link insurance for another position and the affirmative refuses to answer your questions.

5. Counterplans -- PICs good or bad? Should opp identify the status of the counterplan? Perms -- textual competition ok? Functional competition?

All things being equal, I have tended to err negative in most CP theory debates (except for delay), but am growing more frustrated with tiny PICs and other arguably abusive CPs Ė so this trend may change.  I think CPs should be functionally competitive (though Iíve voted on Ďmust be textually competitiveí on a couple of occasions). Unless specified otherwise, I understand counterplans to be conditional. I donít have a particularly strong position on the legitimacy of conditionality. I think advantage CPs are smart and underutilized.

6. In the absence of debaters' clearly won arguments to the contrary, what is the order of evaluation that you will use in coming to a decision (e.g. do procedural issues like topicality precede kritiks which in turn precede cost-benefit analysis of advantages/disadvantages, or do you use some other ordering?)?

All things being equal, I evaluate procedural issues first. After that, I evaluate everything through a comparative advantage framework.

7. How do you weight arguments when they are not explicitly weighed by the debaters or when weighting claims are diametrically opposed? How do you compare abstract impacts (i.e. "dehumanization") against concrete impacts (i.e. "one million deaths")?

I tend to prefer concrete impacts over abstract impacts absent a reason to do otherwise.  If there are competing stories comparing impacts (and there probably should be), I accept the more warranted story. I also have a tendency to focus more heavily on probability than magnitude.




Sarah DeBruyckere - McKendree University

Saved Philosophy:

I did parli debate for 4 years at McKendree University (2010-2014). I've been out for a few years, so keep that in mind. If you want to have a K debate, have a K debate. However, slow down in those instances a little because K's were never my thing. I'm fine with speed. I'm fine with conditionality. It would be hard to win a round on condo bad, but not unattainable. Not a big fan of generic politics unless it actually has solid links.




Bobby Swetz - McKendree University

Saved Philosophy:

About Me: My name is Bobby Swetz. I debated at Homewood Flossmoor High School. I mainly ran critical arguments such as Deleuze. I received 4 bids to the TOC. I have debated for two different colleges. At Southern Illinois, I debated solely in parli. I was in late elims of every major national tournament, I won the largest parli tournament, and was in finals of the NPDA Nationals. I coached and judged at the 2016 TOC. At KCKCC, I returned to debating in policy.

China Topic: I have been coaching a bit this season so I have a decent knowledge of the topic. With that being said, I would still avoid hyper-specific acronyms.

Overall Thesis: Debate is what you make of it. As with every judge in policy, I have obvious pre-dispositions. Outside of any inevitable bias, I will attempt to adjudicate the debate to the best of my ability as a non-partisan educator. You may feel free to read whatever arguments you want, whether it be T QPQ or Bataille or Dedev.

Policy Debate: The affirmative case, I believe, is the most important point of any debate. Either team can win or lose on the case debate. If the negative does not sufficiently answer the case, it is an easy aff ballot because they can simply weigh their case against the negative's disads. Topicality, in a policy lens where there is no critique of topicality, is always a voting issue. Theory, unless it is something like condo, is almost always a reason to reject the argument, and not the team. I can be persuaded otherwise though.

Critical Debate: The question of education and pedagogy is perhaps the most important consideration for kritikal debate. Whether you're reading a critique, or you are reading framework against an non-topical affirmative, the framework and lens through which you may view the debate should be the focal point of said debate.

Afterword: This philosophy has been intentionally vague. I really do not care what you read. I, just as you are, am still learning and want to be taught just as much as I want to teach you.




Ken Newby - Morehouse College

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Mario Stephens - Morehouse College

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Emanuel Waddell - Morehouse College

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Trevor Greenan - Parliamentary Debate at Berkeley

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


David Worth - Rice University

Saved Philosophy:

David Worth, Ph.D.

 

D.O.F., Rice University

 

Judging Philosophy

 

My decision is based mostly on how the debaters argue I should decide the round; I try to avoid using my own decision-making philosophy as much as possible but will when the round demands it.  There are many cases where this might be necessary: If asked to use my ballot politically for example, or if both sides fail to give me a clear mechanism for voting, or if I know something to factually incorrect (if you are lying).  In these cases I try to stay out of the decision as much as I can but I donít believe in the idea that any living person is really a blank slate or a sort of argument calculator. 

 

Decision-making Approach: Iíll judge based on given criteria. I can think in more than one way.  This means that the mechanisms for deciding the round are up for debate as far as Iím concerned. 

 

Warrants: I will not vote for assertions that donít at least have some warrant behind them. You canít say ďalgae blooms,Ē and assume I will fill in the internals and the subsequent impacts for you. You donít get to just say that some counter-intuitive thing will happen. You need a reason that that lovely regionally based sustainable market will just magically appear after the conveniently bloodless collapse of capitalism. Iím not saying I wonít vote for that. Iím just saying you have to make an argument for why it would happen. NOTE: I need a good warrant for an "Independent Voting Issue" that isn't an implication of a longer argument or procedural. Just throwing something in as a voter will not get the ballot. I reserve the right to gut-check these. If there is not warrant or if the warrant makes no sense to me, I won't vote on it. 

 

Offense/Defense: Defense can win, too. That doesnít mean that a weaker offensive argument with risk canít outweigh defense, it just means that just saying, ďoh thatís just defense,Ē wonít make the argument go away for me. Debate is not football. Thereís no presumption in the NFL, so that analogy is wrong.

 

Assessing Arguments: An argumentís weight depends on how strong it is.  I think line-by-line vs. "big picture" is an artificial divide anyway.  This can vary by round.  I would say you need to deal with all the line-by-line stuff but should not fail to frame things (do the big picture work) for me as well.  Itís pretty rare that I vote on one response but itís equally rare that I will vote on the most general level of the ideas.

 

Presentation: All good as long as you are clear. Iíll tell you if you are not, but not more than a couple of times. After that, I will try, but I make no guarantees.

 

Strong Viewpoints: As Iíve said before, I probably won t vote to kill everyone to save the planet/galaxy/universe. Otherwise I haven t found "the" issue yet that I can t try to see all sides of.

 

I vote on procedurals a bit less than other arguments but that doesnít mean that you shouldnít run them. I am getting kind of tired of purely strategic procedurals. However, even though they arenít favorites they are sometimes necessary.

 

Points of Order: Call them, or donít call them; Iíll probably know whether the argument is new and not calling them does not change their status as new.  Also, if youíre clearly winning bigtime donít call a ridiculous number of them in your opponentsí rebuttal. Just let them get out of the round with some dignity (if you donít, speaker points will suffer). Itíll be obvious when I think you are calling too many.

 

Other Items to Note:

 

If the round is obviously lopsided and you are obliterating the other team (e.g. if they are novices), then be nice. I will obliterate your speaker points if you arenít nice or if you simply pile it on for the heck of it.

 

You donít need to repeat yourself just to fill time. If youíre finished, then sit down and get us all to lunch, the end of the day, or the next round early.

 

Iím not going to weigh in on the great theoretical controversies of the game. Those are up to you to demonstrate in the round. T can be more than one thing depending on the round. Counterplans can function in more than one way. Critical debates can have many forms. Iím not going to tell you what to do. I am familiar with pretty much all of it, and have been around for a long time. I donít pretend to think any of the issues are settled.  Actually, Iíve learned or at least been forced to think about theory issues from debaters in rounds far more often than from anyone else. If I had pontificated about The Truth As I Knew It before those rounds, the debaters would have simply argued what I said I liked and I wouldnít have learned, so itís in my interest as well as yours for me not to hand you a sushi menu with the items Iíd like to see checked off. PICS, Framework, Competing Interp, in-round abuse, etc. These are all interpretable in the debate. I will say that I probably most naturally think in terms of competing interpretations on T, but, as I mention above, I can think in more than one way.

 

I will also say that I dislike the post/pre-fiat issue. I am kind of over it.  Find a way to compare the impacts/implications and the plan/alt, etc. for me. It really annoys me to have compare things after the round that I was told throughout the round were ďnot comparable.Ē If you donít find a way, donít get mad at me for comparing them however I choose to compare them.

 

My ďDebate Background:Ē I did CEDA/NDT in college. I coached policy for years, and also coached parli from the days of metaphor and holding-the-wig-on-as-you-stand all the way into the NPTE/NPDA modern era. I have also coached NFA-LD.

 

Finally, everyone in the room has sacrificed something to be there. A lot of resources, time, and effort went in to bringing us all there. Be sure to show some basic respect for that.

 




Adam Testerman - Texas Tech U

Saved Philosophy:

Background

Hi there!  I have competed in debate and forensics for over 10 years.  I participated in parliamentary debate during college, with two years at Southern Illinois University and two years at Texas Tech University.  I feel comfortable judging any ďgenreĒ of argument and have no real argument preference beyond the desire to see clash.  I coached for three years at Lewis & Clark College; this is my second year as Director of Forensics at TTU. 

 

General Issues

Parliamentary debate is the most fun and the most educational when a variety of argumentative styles, people, knowledge bases, and strategies are given room to thrive.  I feel lucky to have judged a vast array of different arguments in my judging career.  One of my main goals as a judge is to allow teams to run the arguments they feel are most compelling in front of me.  Iíve picked up teams reading structural indictments of debate about as many times as Iíve picked up teams reading policy affirmatives and defending incrementalism. 

 

It is my goal to involve myself in the debate round as little as possible.  I have no preference for any particular kind of argument and generally feel that almost every debate issue can be resolved in the round.  I will vote for arguments with warrants. I will try my best to synthesize your arguments, but I also believe that to be a central skill of effective debaters. 

 

I will vote for arguments I think are stupid 10 out of 10 times if they are won in the round. 

 

I rely on my flow to decide the round.  I attempt to flow performances and I do my best to write down what youíre saying as close to verbatim as my fingers allow me.  If there is an expectation that I not decide the round based on the way I understand argument interaction on my flow, that should be stated explicitly and it would be a good idea to tell me how I am intended to evaluate the debate round. 

 

Emphasize explanation earlyÖ donít let your argument make sense for the first time in the LOR or PMR etc. 

 

All constructive speeches should take a question if asked, and itís strategic to ask questions. 

 

Theory interpretations and advocacy statements should be read slowly and read twice. 

 

Points of Order should be called, but I will also do my best to protect new argumentsÖ donít be excessive with them though [Iíll be vague about what that means, but be an adult] 

 

RVIís have never been good arguments, read them at your own risk.  

 

Theory/Procedurals

I cut my teeth on procedural arguments in college, and I am still a huge fan.  To vote on a procedural, I need an interpretation explaining how the debate should be evaluated, a violation detailing specifically why the other team does not fit within that interpretation, standards that explain why the interpretation is good, and a voter that outlines why I should vote on the argument.  PLEASE read your interpretation/definition slowly and probably repeat it.  It is good to have an interpretation that makes some sense. 

 

DAs/Advantages

DAs and Advs. require uniqueness arguments that explain why the situation the affirmative causes is not happening in the status quo.  Defensive arguments are useful, but they often serve to make offensive arguments more impactful or serve as risk mitigation, as opposed to terminal takeouts. 

 

I ran politics in a majority of my negative rounds and I coach my teams to read the position as well.  So, I will totally vote on politics every time it is won.  That being said, Iím finding the position to be one my least favorite and least compelling these days.  The obscene nature of congress make the position even more laughable than it was in the past [and itís always been sketchy at best, without cards (and with?)].  Read the DA if youíre a politics team, but there are almost always better arguments out there. 

 

Critiques

Critique debates can be fun to watch, but only when the position is clear at the thesis level. If your shell argues that the K is a prior question or something like that, spend some meaningful time explaining why thatís the case instead of ďshadowĒ extending an argument from the shell.  I am familiar with a lot of the literature, but you should argue the position as if I am not.  Critiques are totally dope, but only because they have the potential to advance compelling argumentsÖ not because they are obtuse. 

 

Framework debates are a waste of time a vast majority of the time.  I do not understand why teams spend any substantive amount of time on framework.  The question of whether the affirmative methodology/epistemology/whatever vague term you want to use, is good or bad should be determined in the links and impacts of the criticism.  I see almost no world where framework matters independent of the rest of the shell.  SoÖ the only K framework questions that tend to make sense to me are arguments about why it is a prior question.  It makes sense that if the critique wins that the affirmative impacts are threat constructions that Iím not going to weigh the affirmative impacts against the position.  Thatís not a framework debate though, thatís a question determined by winning the thesis of the position. 

 

Critical affirmatives can be cool, but they also put me in a weird position as a judge sometimes.  If your affirmative is positioned to critique DAs, then I still want to see specific applications of those arguments to the DAs.  I need to see how the DA demonstrates your argument to be true in some specific way.  By that I mean, if the negative outright wins a DA, I would need to see why that would mean the affirmative shouldnít lose early, often, and specifically.  The same is true of any set/genre of negative positions. 

 

Performance

I tend to not have super strong feelings in favor or in opposition to ďperformanceĒ style arguments.  Several of the teams I have coached have run non-traditional arguments and I have seen those be incredibly beneficial for the debaters and have a positive effect on education garnered from their rounds.  I have also seen people really struggle with performance-style arguments on an interpersonal level, in both advocating their positions and responding to others doing so.  I defer to the debaters to wade through the various issues related to performance-style debate. 

 

For me, performances [and this is definitely for lack of a better term that groups non-policy/non-topic oriented approaches] have the potential to make very compelling arguments.  However, I will vote for framework as answer to these arguments if the other team ďwinsĒ the position. 

 

CPs

In general, the CP/DA debate is probably what I feel most comfortable judging accurately and I think CPs that solve the affirmative are very strategic. There are probably enough arguments on both sides to justify different interpretations of how permutation or CP theory in general should go down, that I donít have strong opinions about many CP related issues.  

 

I tend to think objections to conditionality are rooted in some very valid arguments, however I find myself concluding conditionality is probably more good than bad in my mind.  That only means the conditionality debate is totally fair game and I probably have voted conditionality bad as many times as I have voted it is good. 

 

Cheater CPs are cool with me, so feel free to deploy delay, conditions, consult, whatever.  I tend to think the theory arguments read in answer to those positions are more persuasive than the answers when argued perfectly, but that in no way makes me more predisposed to reject any kind of CP strategy.




Joe Provencher - Texas Tech U

Saved Philosophy:

The Quick hits for Prep time:

 

Unless told otherwise, I default to net-bens/policy making.

 

If you want me to evaluate topicality via competing interpretations, slow down a bit through your interpretations so I have the text exactly as you intend it. You should also probably take a question on your definition/interp if it's particularly long/nuanced/complex/crazy.

 

I used to tell teams I believed all advocacies in round should be unconditional. However, a lot of the conditionallity debates I saw were really terrible, and probably had PMRs going for the theory without really understanding it, and then expecting me to vote every time for the aff as a result of my philosophy. So I'll try my best to explain it more below, but for your quick evaluation of me now, know that I don't really think conditionality is necessary (maybe not even good), but will do my absolute best to be open to the theory arguments made in round.

 

I think that counter-plans must compete via net-benefits or mutual exclusivity. Other CP theory arguments are going to be an uphill battle for my ballot.

 

I don't think I'm biased one way or another on the kritik. I think good K debate is good, and bad K debate is bad (and good theory debate is good, bad theory debate is bad, etc, etc). Just get small in the rebuttals, one way or the other, and pick your winning argument. Like any argument, if you suspect I may not be 100% familiar with the literature you are using, then make the tag line very clear so you can read your warrants as fast as you want.

 

Take some points of information. Be cordial.

Call as many points of order as you want, but it should be limited to the individual calling the point of order, and a response from the opposing individual making the argument. There should never be a debate, or any back and forth, about whether an argument is new. Make your point, respond to it. 

 

 

Some further reading for your strikes:

 

On conditionality: I would never explicitly tell a team not to run a certain argument in front of me. However, out of all the reading I've done, and rounds I've seen, I can't imagine a world in which the MG puts out a good Condo bad shell, the PMR goes for it sufficiently, and I do not vote for it. Maybe the reading I've done is insufficient, but I'm not convinced yet, and the limited condo debates I've seen have been bad ones that only reinforce that opinion. However, I'm trying to stay open to furthering my education in the activity and would encourage anyone to come find me and talk (maybe outside of round) so we can keep the discussion going.

 

On topicality: I believe that T is a discussion to find the best definition of a word in the resolution. The standards debate is a debate about why a particular definition is very good. A lot of times, especially with teams yelling about ground to DAs they're supposed to have, I think that focus gets lost. If a plan doesn't link to your DA, it might not be because they have mis-defined a word. It might just be that the DA is not good. Consequently, the claim that NEG can read DAs is not a reason your definition is good. That just means they can run DAs. Most debaters are good enough to come up with some kind of offense on the spot.

 

In general: Good debate gets small at the end of the rounds. Rebuttal speeches should be deep and specific, and focussed around why I must prioritize a single given story. Do that, you win.




David Hansen - Texas Tech U

Saved Philosophy:

Hey there! I competed for 2 years at Snow College and 3 years at William Jewell College. However, for the last year I have been teaching debate in South Korea and China. I am currently a graduate teaching assistant at Texas Tech University. My preferred pronouns are he/him/his.

General Notes

I believe that NPDA is a unique and amazing format. Making your critical, framework, and theory arguments specific to NPDA is a great way to win more debates.

 

Interpretations and advocacies should at least be read twice and slowly. Ideally you provide the judge(s) and competitors with a copy.

 

Pretty much nothing in my philosophy is absolute.

 

I tend to believe that the way we discuss the world has real impacts outside of the debate round. 

 

If debaters are debating ethically, I tend to believe that framework arguments are more persuasive than the arguments against it. However, I will vote based on how the debate plays out. If you win that defending the topic is bad and you reject the topic, you will likely win the debate.

 

An argument without a warrant isnít an argument.

 

Theory and Framework

I love a great theory or framework shell. I am happy to vote here. I think debaters need to step outside our normal buzzwords and discuss how our interpretations alter the debate game and our education.

 

Counter Plans

Iím uncertain about conditionality. I am sympathetic to arguments about the MG being key and difficult. However, I also believe the negative should have some flexibility. Feel free to run your shell. Feel free to be conditional. I will vote depending on how condo plays out.

PICís are usually abusive in NPDA debate, but often strategic and occasionally justified Ė especially if the topic provides affflex.

 

Delay is almost always bad, so are process CPís.

 

Kritiks

These are fine. I read them a lot, went for them occasionally. Please provide early thesis-level analysis. I think most K shells Iíve seen are incredibly inefficient and vulnerable to impact turns. Teams should likely cut major portions of their FW page and instead develop solvency and internal links to the case.

 

MGís should be more willing to go hard right (or left) to answer Kís. The aff probably links to Cap, but there is SUBSTANTIAL lit in favor of cap.

 

Performance

I think performance arguments can be amazing. However, they are easy to do inefficiently and hard to do well. An aff that is rejecting the motion needs to justify why: 1. Your thing matters more than the topic 2. Why you canít discuss your thing on this topic OR 3. Why your thing is a prior question to the topic.

 

On the neg, you need to prove that you are an opportunity cost to the aff. Maybe itís as simple as you need to keep debating, but you need a reason.




Katelyn Johnson - Texas Tech U

Saved Philosophy:

Hey all! To start, my judging philosophy is probably similar toDavid Hansenís. However, there are certain issues I view differently than David. I say this to encourage you to actually read my philosophy and not assume you know my preferences because you might know Davidís.

I started my debate career at Snow College where I did NPDA and IEís for two years before transferring to William Jewell College. I debated there for three years and won nationals in 2016. I love debate. The thing I love most about it is that itís not about the judges, itís about the debaters. To that end, debate what you want to debate about.

*Note for Jewell: I have spent a year living in South Korea working with students who donít speak English natively, so your top speed may be too fast. I will let you know if I have any difficulty understanding you with either ďclearĒ or ďspeedĒ.

 

General Notes

If I were to summarize my philosophy, I would say I think that you can run whatever you would like to run as long as you justify it. Whether that be the cap k, fem, afro pessimism, heg, politics, etc., if you can justify you have access to those arguments via links or framework, I can be persuaded to vote there.

Interpretations and advocacies should at least be read twice and slowly. I will ask for a copy of your texts (cp, plant text, t interps, etc).

Pretty much nothing in my philosophy is absolute.

An argument without a warrant isnít an argument.

Theory and Framework

I love theory debates. Framework was the most common argument I ran my senior year. That being said, I do believe most theory debate is executed very poorly. I will not be persuaded by repeating the shell your coach gave you if you canít explain what standards like ďlimitsĒ mean. Generally, Iíve found that theory positions that are nuanced, specific to parli, and are good at interacting with standards are rare.

The exception to this rule is straight-up T in policy debates. This is the one theory that I have a high threshold for.

Counter Plans

Generally, I believe that condo is bad. I think it discourages in-depth research and takes away too much MG flex. However, I know there are excellent condo good args. If you win those, Iíll def vote against condo bad.

PICís I think are fair game. I think their extremely strategic but can be abusive, so get good specific justifications that are related to the topic.

Delay is almost always bad, so are process CPís.

 

Kritiks

These are fine. I read them a lot, went for them occasionally. Please provide early thesis-level analysis. I think most K shells Iíve seen are incredibly inefficient and vulnerable to impact turns. Teams should likely cut major portions of their FW page and instead develop solvency and internal links to the case.

MGís should be more willing to go hard right (or left) to answer Kís. The aff probably links to Cap, but there is SUBSTANTIAL lit in favor of cap.

***I do have a much higher threshold for frenchy Kís (Derrida,Deleuze, etc). This is partly because I get frustrated with how these arguments are so different then how their authors wrote them. If this is your baby, go for it. Just make sure you clearly explain what your K is and donít over rely on jargon.***

Performance

I think performance arguments can be amazing. However, most teams do a terrible job of justifying why they donít have to debate the topic. I think these arguments exist, but that generally teams are bad at explaining them.

I am probably far more likely to vote on framework arguments if the affís justification for not debating about the topic is generic, especially if it seems like you are running the position just to catch your opponent off guard. ***This is not to say you canít run them. Just be nuanced in your justification.***

On the neg, you need to prove that you are an opportunity cost to the aff. Maybe itís as simple as you need to keep debating, but you need a reason.




Jackson De Vight - Texas Tech U

Saved Philosophy:

Background: I have been debating for 10 years. I started in high school with LD, policy, and parli, and did parli in SoCal for 4 years. Iím now a graduate coach at TTU.

 

General: 

- PLEASE READ: I am hard of hearing and have wrist issues so please emphasize clarity and word economy over speed. I'll get to argument preferences later, but TBH just understand that I prefer depth and organization way more than speed. If you're one of the faster teams, go about 2/3s your full speed for maximum comprehension. I will clear and speed-check you, but if I drop my pen, that's the final signal that you've lost me. I vote on my flowÖso donít lose my flowing.

 

- Read all plan texts, counterplan texts, advocacy texts, alternative text, and interp/role of the ballot arguments slowly, twice, and clearly. 

 

- I donít time speeches myself.

 

- I may want a copy of all texts, interps, and ROBs beyond specifically what I flow, so be prepared.

 

- Topical debates are by far my preferred mode.

 

- I generally dislike Condo, mostly because it's generally deployed pretty poorly. You can use it, but I'm pretty sympathetic to Condo Bad when warranted well. 

 

- Ideologically Iím fairly open to most arguments but do realize that my social location and political perspective are probably irrevocably intertwined in the way I evaluate rounds. Like, Iímpretty moderate, so warranted arguments about the wonders of the free market or the necessity of social purging arenít likely to do well in front of me if your opponent knows what theyíre doing.

 

- For the K: 

 

TL; DR Ė unless itís a pretty well-structured criticism that links well and specifically, Iím probably just not the judge you want in the back of the room. Ultimately, I'm compelled to vote for well-warranted, smart arguments regardless of the form they take.  Because of my experience/background, I'm less compelled out-of-hand by approaches that do not seek to engage the core of the topic (and that goes for aff and neg), but see previous sentence for how you should to debate in front of me.  I want to hear your best arguments, and I'll vote on what's won.

 

Assume I donít read your lit base. Most of my issues following those arguments have to do with the use of phrases Iím not familiar with. If you have me in the back of the room, consider simplifying the terminology and I should be fine. However, I am not the best critic for your arguments. I think about public policy frequently. This is less true for critical arguments.  Also, if you go one off and 5 minutes of case and the one off is a disad, youíll probably have my heart forever.

 

I very much believe that debate is a game that you are trying to win. Utilizing debate rounds as personal platform ventures into a realm I am deeply uncomfortable assessing. You are free to engage in debate in a manner you see fit, but realize that I likely do not possess the capacity to properly assess the role of personal history as part of a critical debate. You will do much better here if you have a solidly built framework and well articulate ROB.

 

   * I cordially dislike almost every affirmative criticism that does not uphold the burden of the affirmative in relation to the resolution. 

 

  ** For criticisms that utilize personal experience, please avoid using arguments about mental health issues or sexual violence.

 

  *** Performance-oriented criticisms will need to do serious work to justify a performance as something I should vote on.

 

  **** When I ran critical arguments, they were mostly economic, ablism, or ecological in nature.

 

Arguments: Overall, youíre going to get a lot more mileage from me by going for fewer, more well-articulated, and more warrant-heavy argumentation. As indicated above, speed is not your friend when Iím in the back of the room so just go for depth over breadth.

 

Counterplans: I prefer that you provide a copy for the other team.  Make sure you have a written text. I like advantage counterplans, PICs, and actor counterplans. Consult less so, but Iím open to it. For the affirmative: Iím open to PICs bad but donít default that way. Well utilized CP strats are beautiful.

 

Permutations: Permutations are tests of competition, not advocacies. Multiple perms arenít unfair, but theyíre a little silly unless you explicate why you want more than one. I will not reject a permutation outright unless you give me a reason of why it shouldnít be evaluated. HAVE A PERM TEXT

 

Theory: All theory positions should have an interpretation, a violation, standards, and voting issues. Please read your interpretations more than once. I am pretty willing to vote on well warranted theory arguments.

 

Topicality:  My threshold for T is maybe lower than some. If you win your interpretation, violation, and your standards outweigh I will vote for you.

 

Speaker Points: Be smart and concise and your speaker points will range between 26-30. Utilization of racist, sexist, etc. rhetoric will sink your points pretty quick, as will parroting to your partner. Like, win the round, but donít parrot if you can help it.

 

Voting/Rebuttals/POO: Have clear voting issues either through distinct voters, two world analysis, or some other format. YOU MUST DO IMPACT CALCULUS IF YOU WANT IT CONSIDERED. Call POOs if you hear them. I try to protect, but you should call them all the same. 

 

 

Feel free to ask questions. I can give you my professional email if youíd like it. Debate is great.




Caitlin Smith - University of Minnesota

Saved Philosophy:

Experience/General Stuff:

I debated 4 years of NPDA/NPTE parli in college for Wheaton College (graduated in May) and 4 years of LD in high school. Iím currently coaching parli at the University of Minnesota and LD at Apple Valley High School. I care a lot about debate, about equity in it, access to it, and very much believe in the power it has to change lives. I try to evaluate rounds as on-the-flow as I can, though, of course, none of us are unbiased. That said, debate is a game and the real world at the same time, so I will not check my status as a moral agent at the door. Iím fine with speed and will clear you if you pass my threshold (which is unlikely). Please say all plans/CPís/T-interps/alts/etc. slowly and twice and take at least one question in your speech (if there isn't flex time/CX). Finally, please be respectful of your opponents and partner.

AD/DA/CP Debate:

Iíll be honest, I never did well at complicated economic or political AD/DA debate, so I will be largely limited to my understanding of what you put out in a given round. If youíre clear, there shouldnít be a problem, just donít expect me to know what various terms or abbreviations mean off the bat. 

Weighing:

Please do it. This will make my job a lot easier, and also make it a lot more likely that I see the round the way that you would like me to. I will evaluate the round as you tell me to, but, that said, I default to probability first and will have a substantially lower threshold than most parli judges to vote on systemic/materialized/highly probable impacts (given any arguments being made that I should prefer them). This does not mean I will not vote on nuclear, disaster, etc. scenarios, just that I will not accept prima facie an unwarranted claim that those impacts outweigh all other things if your opponents are making arguments to the contrary.

Theory:

Win the debate on whatever layer you would like, I have no problem voting on theory. I like debates that are contextualized to the way that arguments interact; if you can do the nuances of a theory debate, and/or if your opponent is clearly abusive, I will be happy to vote on that position. I default to competing interpretations. 

Kritiks:

I debated lots of Kís in my time in parli and I love them. The biggest thing I need is a clear alt text and alt solvency. Tell me the (presumably very good) reasons your K matters in this round/against this case/whatever and give me a clear picture of what your alt is going to look like, and I will be happy. I really hate chicken-and-egg style root cause debates and would much prefer to hear substantive debate about the issues in the K. Please donít assume I know your literature. I will vote on what is said in the round, not my prior knowledge of your particular author.

Performance:

Debate is both a game and the real world. Bringing real world issues to the forefront within debate rounds is simultaneously extremely important and extremely difficult. It definitely creates change in our community and, as such, is something I take very seriously. I will attempt to evaluate every round as fairly as I can, while recognizing I do not check my status as a moral agent at the door. The one thing I like to be clear in these debates, therefore, is the role of the judge. I donít mean that you have to include me in your movement, make me feel comfortable, or anything like that; I mean expecting me to evaluate what Iím supposed to do at the end of a debate round, with many moral issues on the table and no framework to deal with them, is very likely to give me an anxiety attack. I donít say this because I anticipate any such problem, but simply because it is a very real concern for my mental health.

Speaker Points:

26-30, unless you do something very rude or exclusionary.




Sara Maire - University of Minnesota

Saved Philosophy:

Experience:
I debated 4 years of NPDA/NPTE parli for Wheaton College up through 2017 nationals. I
majored in economics and political science for my undergraduate degrees and now I am a
Lieutenant in the Army.
Overview:
I evaluate the debate the debaters have. I am open to policy, kritiks, performance, theory, etc. just
tell me why I should prefer it. If you want to mix policy and critical arguments, go for it. That is
almost exclusively how I debated and I love critical impacts. Just make sure not to contradict
yourself, or go for too much. Weigh. Please. Everyone is happier at the end of the round if there
is clear weighing.
AD/DA/CP Debate:
I will vote on post-fiat impact stories if you win the policy debate and win the importance of
those impacts. Make sure you have clear links. If your opponent points out massive holes in your
link story, I am inclined to listen. The burden is on you to keep your link story in tact, especially
if you have high magnitude impacts. I generally default to probability and prefer systemic
impacts, but ultimately, I will weigh however I am told to weigh, with the most compelling
reasons.
Kritiks:
I will vote on the K if you win the K, and that the K has the most important sheets in the round.
Make sure you have a clear alternative and alt solvency. Be prepared to provide an alternative
text to your opponents if they ask for it. If your alternative is especially long and complicated,
providing a text to me would probably be in your favor. I just got out of high level debate last
year, so I am following most of the lingo and will understand most literature references, but
please donít assume I know your author, or that your opponents do. If you are new to debate and
donít understand what your opponents are talking about, ask questions. If you feel your
opponents are excluding you from the round by failing to answer your questions clearly,
invoking terms and authors you donít know, etc, point it out.
Theory:
I will vote on theory if you win the theory debate. I ran a wide variety of theory arguments --
common ones and occasionally ventured into new territory. Make sure you have a clear
interpretation and be ready to provide a text if your opponents request one.
Performance:
I will vote for a performance debate if the performing team wins the role of the ballot and/or the
role of the judge and/or wins arguments about why the performance comes first. I appreciate the
way performance debates bring real world issues to the forefront of debate rounds and confront
them head on. I have gained appreciation for performance debates over the years, and believe
them to be extremely valuable to our community and beyond. I do not need to be made

comfortable or included or added to your movement to vote for you, but I do appreciate clarity,
especially in performance debates, about how you want me to evaluate the round. If you are
opposing a performance, I would highly encourage you to engage the arguments as best you can.
I will vote on framework, if framework arguments are made and properly explained to be the
most important.
Inclusion:
I expect all debaters to be cordial and respectful of one another. If you are asked to make
accommodations for a disability, I expect you to comply to the best of your ability. I think that
sexism is unfortunately pervasive in our community and challenge male presenting debaters to
be conscious of this in your rhetoric and argumentation. I will vote on theory arguments or
kritiks that demonstrate exclusion if they are well warranted, and am more lenient about structure
in these instances if there is demonstrated abuse. Debate is a game, but it is also the real world.
Donít forget that you are talking to and about real people, and that I am a real person in the back
of the room.
Speaker Points:
27-30, unless you do something incredibly rude or exclusionary.
If you have questions after the round, I would be more than happy to try to answer them. If you
would like to talk in person, you are free to come find me, and if you would like to contact me to
talk later, ask me to put my email on the ballot.




Kaitlyn Bull - Washburn University

Saved Philosophy:

My background: I debated for 5 years on the NPTE/NPDA circuit (2 years at the University of Texas at Tyler and 3 years at Washburn University). I competed in policy debate in high school for 4 years. I have my BA in Political Science with a minor in Women and Gender Studies and Iím currently in my first year of coaching and judging for Washburn University.

Highlights: I think that debate is a game in which you should make use of all the tools that you can creatively deploy. I prefer debates that engage the topic and in an ideal situation utilize fiat to do so, but I will definitely listen to arguments that interpret the topic differently. I would prefer that you read advocacies unconditionally, but I will not vote you down without the other team winning the condo bad theory. Iím most familiar with the following arguments: Politics, T, Hegemony, Feminism, Black Feminism, Queerness, Anthropocentrism, and most other identity or state based criticisms. I protect from new arguments in rebuttals, but if you feel the need then still call them if you must. I will vote for who wins the round, regardless of my personal views as long as you can clearly explain your offense and how to weigh the impacts of your strategy. And finally, impact calculus is the most important thing to me as a judge. I want the rebuttal speeches to help me craft my ballot through the lenses of timeframe, probability, and magnitude (not necessarily in that order).

Identity/Performance/Critical Arguments: I judge these arguments similarly to other criticisms. Therefore, I need a clear advocacy; it does not need to be an alternative, but make your advocacy clear (whether it be a poem, metaphor, alt, etc.). I still think you need to have very strong solvency for your argument and I need some type of way to weigh the debate through impacts. Iím willing to listen to framework debates and many times Ryan and I would elect to use framework as an answer to critical affirmatives. I do think that if you are rejecting the resolution then you need some sort of justification for doing so or some kind of explanation or link to the resolution because I think this fosters creativity.

Flowing: I flow on my laptop because I can type a lot more quickly and clearly than I can write. This means that I would prefer if you just gave me enough time to switch tabs on my laptop when you switch sheets. If I think you are too quiet, unclear, or fast I will let you know immediately. I keep a good and fast flow as long as youíre clear.

Texts and Interpretations: You can either provide me with a written copy of the text  or slow down when you read the plan/cp/alt and repeat it. I think this is very important during theory debates and framework debates.

Procedurals/Theory/T: I enjoy a good T debate and I default to competing interpretations, but this does not mean that I wonít listen to other frameworks for evaluating T. I think that all procedurals can have a role depending on the round. I am not a fan of RVIís. I understand the utility of these arguments, but they likely arenít going to win my ballot. I do not need real in round abuse, but an abuse story needs to exist even if it is potential abuse. I need procedurals to have clearly articulated interpretations, violations, standards, and voters not just blips in the LOC of, ďvote for us for fairness and educationĒ. I view topicality similarly to a disad in that I view standards as being the internal links to the voters (impacts). When it comes to theory concerning advocacies I find multiple worlds bad theory to be quite compelling because I find that inherent contradictions in strategies for the sake of winning take away from the in round education. I am not a huge fan of multiple new theory sheets in the MG. I can see the utility of MG theory arguments, but reading them to simply shotgun the other team hyper-expands the debate into a jumbled mess.

Disads: I enjoy topic specific disads. However, I was a politics debater and so I understand the utility of reading politics on a variety of different topics. However, I have higher standards for voting on politics than most others because I ran the argument so often. I need specifics such as vote counts, those whipping the votes, sponsors of the bill, procedural information regarding passage, etc.

CPs: I love counter-plans and I regret my under-utilization of them while I was a competitor. I am not prone to vote against any type of counter-plan. I prefer functional competition over textual competition because it is easier to weigh and more tangible to me..

Ks: I enjoy criticisms and I believe that they can offer a very unique and creative form of education to the debate space. If your criticism is complicated then I would like a thesis page or an explanation of what the alternative does. I really enjoy a good perm debate on the K and am not opposed listening to theory regarding the alternative/perms (floating PICs, severance, etc.).

Iím going to borrow a bit about alternatives directly from Lauren Knothís philosophy as it describes my feelings regarding complicated alternatives perfectly.

ď***Important*** I need to have a clear explanation of what the alternative does, and what the post-alt world looks like. Stringing together post-modern terms and calling it an alternative is not enough for me if I have no idea what the heck that means. I prefer to know exactly what action is advocated by the alternative, and what the world looks like after passage of the alternative. I think this is also necessary to establish stable solvency/alternative ground for the opposing team to argue against and overall provides for a better debate. Good theory is nothing without a good mechanism with which to implement it, and I'm tired of this being overlooked.Ē

Perms: I really enjoy perm debates. I think that the text of the perm is critical and must be clear in the debate. Slow down, read them twice, and/or give me a copy of the text. You donít have to read the entire plan text in K debates and instead it is sufficient to say, ďdo the plan and xĒ. My definition of a legitimate perm would be that they are all of the plan and all or parts of the CP/Alt. IE: the alternative is to vote negative to recognize the dehumanizing struggle of indigenous populations. The perm in this case could be to do the plan and recognize the struggle of indigenous populations (thus picking out of the word dehumanizing and reading net benefits/disads to the use of that word). I think that perms serve as tests of competition.

 

 




Quintin Brown - Washburn University

Saved Philosophy:

Experience: 2 years of parliamentary debate at Northwest Community College, and did 3 years of NPDA and NPTE debate at Washburn University. During this time, I was semi-competitive at both levels.  Many of my thoughts and upbringing of debate comes from a multitude of people from the community college circuit and the national circuit. I would say my views on debate though have been largely shaped by Jeannie Hunt, Steven Doubledee, and Kevin OíLeary.

 

General: Debate to me is a multitude of things meaning that it is an open space for a diversity of arguments. It still to me though is largely a game that is shaped by the real world and lived experience. I am fine with you doing whatever you please, but I am not saying that I will understand it, I will do my best to evaluate all arguments as best as I can. Make the debate yours, have fun, and compete, thatís what I believe.

 

--Defense (I love terminal defense, to me it is very underutilized)

--Ask for copies of texts or repeat them (ROTB, interps, or anything I will need word for word please read slowly and repeat)

--Take at least one question in each of the constructives

--Partner Communication is fine

 

In general, I do not have a preference in the style of the way you debate, do you, and I will evaluate the best I can.  


Theory: This is one subset of arguments that I wished I delved more into when I debated.  I will not say I am the best at understanding theory, but I do not mind a good procedural or a strategic use of theory.   Deploy it as necessary or as an escape valve, it doesnít matter to me. I think having impacted out voters is nice.  Although, the standards debate to me is the crux of the shell, gotta win a substantive standard to get the impact/voter. I probably would mostly default to competing interps, as well, to me it just makes the most sense, unless there is a really good we meet.


Case: I love case debate. Good terminal case defense and awesome turns, to me, is an underutilized strategy.  Affís be able to defend the case, sometimes as MGís we get too bogged down prepping for the off case positions, just be sure to be able to defend your case. I think LOCís should get to case to at least mitigate each advantage, but I understand time constraints and time management.

 

Performance: To me all debate is a performance, right? Like the judge is basically the audience and evaluates two opposing speakers, seems like a performance, but I digress.

- You should have a role of the ballot/judge argument (probably in your framework interp).

- Explain how the opposing team ought to interact with your performance.

- Explain the importance of your specific performance within the context of the topic.

- Frame your impacts in a manner that is consistent with your performance

The K- I think a good criticism has framework, thesis, links, impacts, alt, and alternative solvency.  The thesis allows the judge to be able to better understand the K itself, by giving a short synopsis of the K, the framework tells me how to evaluate it, is fiat illusory, should evaluate epistemology over ontology, etc.  The links should be specific to the topic and grounded to the literature or if the aff is a critical aff then there should be good justifications for why you are rejecting the topic ( I will vote on framework). If the aff is a critical aff, if you are on the neg and donít have good links to the aff and you prepped your k, and you are also going to read Framework, just make a decision and either go for framework or the K (I just think many instances framework contradicts criticsms so reading framework and a K seems to be contradictory to me unless they donít contradict).  The K should probably outweigh and turn the aff. I do not know all critical literature but the literature bases I do know are:

         Post Modernism

         Post Structuralism

         Whiteness

         Critical Race Theory

Donít let this constrain you though, I love to learn new things and donít mind listening. I will try my best to evaluate your arguments

 

CP Theory: Read whatever theory related to Counterplans you wonít, if you win it you win it. If you lose it, you lose it.

 

 Permutations:

- Always and only a test of competition

- Should explain how the Permutation resolves the links/offense of the DA/K.

- You don't ever need 8 permutations. Read one or two theoretically sound perms with net benefits.

- Sev/Intrinsic perms are probably not voting issues given they are merely tests of competitiveness.

 

Speak Points: I will probably range from 26-30. 30 would be excellent, 29 is almost excellent, and so forth.

 




Sarah Dweik - Washburn University

Saved Philosophy:

My background: I debated for 4 years on the NPTE/NPDA circuit (2.5 years at the University of Missouri and 1.5 years at Washburn). I have helped coach policy and parliamentary debate and finishing up my degree this year. Iím currently in my first year of coaching and judging for Washburn University. Starting off at a student-run program has helped me learn debate from a variety of different people and from learning from watching rounds online. I have also largely been shaped by people like Doubledee, Kevin OíLeary, Ryan Kelly, and Calvin Coker.

Highlights: I think that debate is a space where we can all engage with each other to different degrees. Personally for me, debate became a place where I could feel more comfortable to express myself and engage with others in-depth over a variety of topics that exist or arenít discussed outside of this space. I am fine with whatever arguments you decide to read in front of me, but I cannot claim to fully understand every argument that is read in front of me. The round is yours and you should do what you are comfortable with, have fun, be respectful, and compete.

I prefer debates that engage the topic and in an ideal situation utilize fiat to do so, but I will definitely listen to arguments that interpret the topic differently or if you decide to reject it. I would prefer that you read advocacies unconditionally, but I will not vote you down without the other team winning the condo bad theory. Iím most familiar with the following arguments: Politics, T, Hegemony, Feminism, Black Feminism, Queerness, Orientalism, and most other identity or state based criticisms. I will try and protect from new arguments in rebuttals, but please still call them out if you think they are new so I am not intervening as much. I will vote for who wins the round, regardless of my personal views as long as you can clearly explain your offense and how to weigh the impacts of your strategy. And finally, impact calculus is the most important thing to me as a judge. I want the rebuttal speeches to help me craft my ballot through the lenses of timeframe, probability, and magnitude (not necessarily in that order). I enjoy rebuttals that reflect as much of the RFD as possible, so framing in the LOR and PMR is critical.

Identity/Performance/Critical Arguments: I totally think that debate is a performance, but make the round for you. I judge these arguments similarly to other criticisms. Therefore, I need a clear advocacy; it does not need to be an alternative, but make your advocacy clear (whether it be a poem, metaphor, alt, etc.). I still think you need to have very strong solvency for your argument and I need some type of way to weigh the debate through impacts. Iím willing to listen to framework debates and many times would elect to use framework as an answer to critical affirmatives. I do think that if you are rejecting the resolution then you need some sort of justification for doing so or some kind of explanation or link to the resolution because I think this fosters creativity.

Flowing: I flow on my laptop because I can type a lot more quickly and clearly than I can write. This means that I would prefer if you just gave me enough time to switch tabs on my laptop when you switch sheets. If I think you are too quiet, unclear, or fast I will let you know immediately. I keep a good and fast flow as long as youíre clear. I also like to make sure I have alt, advocacy texts, and interpretations typed correctly, so I might ask for copies of those after the round to make sure that I have it down correctly.

Texts and Interpretations: You can either provide me with a written copy of the text or slow down when you read the plan/cp/alt and repeat it. I think this is very important during theory debates and framework debates. I would like you to either repeat it twice and slowly to make sure that I have a copy of it or make sure that you give me a copy.

Procedurals/Theory/T: I enjoy a good T debate and I default to competing interpretations, but this does not mean that I wonít listen to other frameworks for evaluating T. I think that all procedurals can have a role depending on the round. I am not a fan of RVIís. I understand the utility of these arguments, but they likely arenít going to win my ballot. I do not need real in round abuse, but an abuse story needs to exist even if it is potential abuse. I need procedurals to have clearly articulated interpretations, violations, standards, and voters not just blips in the LOC of, ďvote for us for fairness and educationĒ. I view topicality similarly to a disad in that I view standards as being the internal links to the voters (impacts). When it comes to theory concerning advocacies I find multiple worlds bad theory to be quite compelling because I find that inherent contradictions in strategies for the sake of winning take away from the in round education. I am not a huge fan of multiple new theory sheets in the MG. I can see the utility of MG theory arguments, but reading them to simply shotgun the other team hyper-expands the debate into a jumbled mess.

Disads: I enjoy topic specific disads. However, I was a politics debater and so I understand the utility of reading politics on a variety of different topics. However, I have higher standards for voting on politics than most others because I ran the argument so often. I need specifics such as vote counts, those whipping the votes, sponsors of the bill, procedural information regarding passage, etc.

CPs: I love counter-plans and I regret my under-utilization of them while I was a competitor. I am not prone to vote against any type of counter-plan. I prefer functional competition over textual competition because it is easier to weigh and more tangible to me.

Ks: I enjoy criticisms and I believe that they can offer a very unique and creative form of education to the debate space. If your criticism is complicated then I would like a thesis page or an explanation of what the alternative does. I really enjoy a good perm debate on the K and am not opposed listening to theory regarding the alternative/perms (floating PICs, severance, etc.).

Iím going to borrow a bit about alternatives directly from Lauren Knothís philosophy as it describes my feelings regarding complicated alternatives perfectly.

ď***Important*** I need to have a clear explanation of what the alternative does, and what the post-alt world looks like. Stringing together post-modern terms and calling it an alternative is not enough for me if I have no idea what the heck that means. I prefer to know exactly what action is advocated by the alternative, and what the world looks like after passage of the alternative. I think this is also necessary to establish stable solvency/alternative ground for the opposing team to argue against and overall provides for a better debate. Good theory is nothing without a good mechanism with which to implement it, and I'm tired of this being overlooked.Ē

Perms: I really enjoy perm debates. As a PMR, trust me, I really love the perm debate. I think that the text of the perm is critical and must be clear in the debate. Slow down, read them twice, and/or give me a copy of the text. You donít have to read the entire plan text in K debates and instead it is sufficient to say, ďdo the plan and xĒ. My definition of a legitimate perm would be that they are all of the plan and all or parts of the CP/Alt. I think that perms are in between a test of competition and an advocacy (because youíre really achieving both, ya know).

Speaker Points: I usually start at 28 and will go up or down depending on how everything goes. I do think speaker points are totally random, with no real scale for all of us to follow, but I will try my best to reward you on how well you do. I highly value the argumentation that is made to earn speaker points, although if I canít understand your arguments, then we might have a problem.

I also highly value being respectful in rounds, where if you are insulting other debaters or treating them rudely (their argument is stupid, obviously you didnít listen to my argument, they are stupid for making this argument, etc.) will reflect in your speaker points. Being condescending or rude during rounds doesnít get anyone anywhere and is highly unenjoyable to watch.




Steve Doubledee - Washburn University

Saved Philosophy:

Debate is a game of strategy and persuasion. Those who can strike the perfect balance between these two will always win my ballot.

Things I prefer...
1.I prefer debaters embrace the topic... Topic specific Aff, DA, K, CP, Politics-(specific links), Case, T, Specs etc...are all appreciated. I also understand sometimes you have to run a critical aff via poor ground for the Aff.If you like running identity based arguments I am probably not the judge for you but I will listen.
2.I prefer debaters give impact analysis via timeframe, probability, and magnitude. I will always privilege high probability small impacts over low probability big impacts.
3.I prefer debaters not attempt to speak at a rate they cannot handle.

Things I demand...
1.I want a written copy of all texts Plan, CP, Alts, Perms etc... if overly complicated...if plan is the rez then no need.
2.Be kind to each other. If you are rude it will hurt your speaker points. I am not a big fan of cursing in debate rounds.

Theory thoughts...All theory arguments are fine. Below is my only "theory pet peeve".

Conditional strategies are fine but should be justified through the lens of Aff/Neg flex. So many times debaters want to list off all the advantages of conditional strats but fail to justify why they deserve the right to conditionality in the first place---Aff/Neg flex is how you do so. If the Aff has high flex--(meaning a lot of possible Affs, bidirectional resolution etc...) then the Neg probably has some good justifications for why they need the reciprocal right of conditionality to counter the Aff's use of parametrics.. If the Aff has low flex--(meaning one possible Aff) then the Neg probably will have a harder time justifying why they should have the right to conditionality....Seems like a PIC would be better in this instance.

peace
dd

 

 




Jeremy Christensen - Washburn University

Saved Philosophy:

Name: Jeremy Christensen
School: Washburn University (Hired)

Section 1: General Information
Please begin by explaining what you think is the relevant information about your approach to judging that will best assist the debaters you are judge debate in front of you. Please be specific and clear. Judges who write philosophies that are not clear will be asked to rewrite them. Judges who do not rewrite them may be fined or not allowed to judge/cover teams at the NPTE.

My approach to judging relies upon the round I will judge; or, in short, I try not to decide a round before I enter it. In the follow pages, I explain some things I lean against or am less likely to vote for, that does not mean they are excluded; it means you will have to do more work to win them. With that said, as much as I try to let the round be yours and the arguments be yours, if I am given the choice between sensible and less sensible, I will likely default to the sensible.

My sensible may be different than yours. I could be wrong. In nearly thirty years coaching debaters, judging debaters, and competing in debate in every format (excepting Public Forum), I can say I have made a few mistakes. I am honest (I do not rep out); I listen impartially (as long as you donít attack me or members of the other team); and I want you to have the best educational and competitive experience possible while debating in front of me. 

Section 2: Specific Inquiries 
Please describe your approach to the following.

1. Speaker points (what is your typical speaker point range or average speaker points given)?

2.  My typical speaker point range is between 25 and 30, although particularly boorish behavior Ė swearing at a competitor, insulting me, insulting the other teamís college or the college with which I am affiliated, using racist or sexist slurs Ė will  minimally earn zero speaker points and the latter two issues will result in a report to the tournament director. Frankly, I really donít expect any of that to happen, but there is the worst case scenario. 


3. How do you approach critically framed arguments? Can affirmatives run critical arguments? Can critical arguments be ďcontradictoryĒ with other negative positions?

Critiques are great when they are developed as more than non-unique disadvantages. With that said, I should point out a couple of things. First, I believe you need some alternative. That alternative may emerge as a framework, at which point you expect me to interpret the round through another lens that points beyond dead bodies, but that constitutes an alternative framework. For me that means you are advocating a different view. Second, I can be sold on something as simple as ďreject the Affirmative,Ē but ultimately you need to tell me what that rejection gets me and what it is I embrace. Unless the framework is a Heddigerian nothingness or a Derridian deconstructivist mode, then Iím unclear where rejection leaves me. (Both of those frameworks would need to be fully explained.) Therefore, with your capitalism K, for instance, I would rather see some advocacy from Judith Butler or (gasp) even something from Marx, that suggests a new worldview or course of individual action gets me outside the mental or physical box of the Affirmative advocacy.

Perming critiques is absolutely acceptable, although I think one needs to move beyond ďI can can think and act,Ē permutations. To boil it down, I understand critiques as something along the lines of advocating a proposition of personal policy; e.g. ďYou should reject capitalism.Ē  The criticism requires no mechanism of coercion as would an agent of systemic policy, but does require a problem (implication) cause (link) and solution (alternative). With that in mind, the alternative becomes the plan and solvency for such a proposition, which means that the Affirmative can perm the critique just as they perm any other counterplan. That also means that Iím very sympathetic to arguments that say the absence of an alternative skews ground, so specification arguments on the criticism would come prior to the criticisms implication, unless, of course, the framework for the criticism can anticipate the objection and in some way mute the specification. 

4. Performance based argumentsÖ
Strike me if this is your strategy. I do not understand them. That is not to say I find them invalid, it is just that I donít see how the performance can engage straight refutation without some serious intervention on my part. You donít want my intervention, as I will likely defer to an aesthetic standard driven by my background in critical theory and literary studies. Based on many of the performances Iíve seen, they would not fair well under the scope of those lenses. In the end, I appreciate your effort, but I am not the person to give the argument fair assessment.


5. Topicality and other procedurals. What do you require to vote on topicality? Is in-round abuse necessary? Do you require competing interpretations?

With the exception of topicality, I see procedurals as being viable only when a team can show in-round (meaning during the exchange of arguments), articulated abuse, especially with spec arguments. (See more on this in the flowsheet section.)

Topicality, on the other hand, can be won on jurisdiction. I donít necessarily have to see abuse, although Iím open to whatever on that discussion. Competing interpretations wins topicality debates, so the standards debate controls the internal link to the violation. This does not mean the Affirmative needs to generate counter-standards, if their interpretation meets the given standards better (what is the standard for that?) than the Negative. Also, counter-definitions may be unnecessary. As hard as this may be to believe, on occasion, Negative teams run crummy topicality arguments that the Affirmative actually meets. So, in those cases, a good ďwe meetĒ pretty well takes out the link to the violation, which means topicality goes away. This goes for spec as well. Win the standards, and you should be good to go.


6. Counterplans -- PICs good or bad? Should opp identify the status of the counterplan? Perms -- textual competition ok? functional competition?

Counterplans can be run as unconditional or dispositional without any challenges from me, although I strongly urge the Affirmative to clarify what the Negative means by dispositionality; e.g. what are the conditions they understand as being valid ground upon which to kick the position. Without that clarification, Iíll assume dispositionality means Negative can only go for one CP or the Status Quo or a procedural; however, I do not understand dispositionality as ďwhenever I feel like it, even with a perm on itĒ (that, I would understand as conditionality). A perm on the CP means, just like a turn on DA (which is functionally a Status Quo CP) means offense and the Negative needs out of that before they kick it.  Feel free, however, to make any arguments that dispo is bad; Iíll listen to them and keep my prejudices in check.
Conditionality is not totally out of the realm of possibility, but the Negative needs to win the theory in a big way.
As far as permutations are concerned, perms test competition, but do not constitute an advocacy. With that said, if the Affirmative keeps telling me they get ďdouble solvency,Ē I will happily vote for double solvency unless the Negative points out that this perm constitutes an intrinsicness or severance permuation. Often I find teams kick out of part of plan to delink the DA, which would make for a severance perm, as well.  Perms are controlled by the negative at the level of uniqueness on the net-benefit. That means if the Negative can demonstrate how post-plan the impact from the DA exists even if the counterplan could be done later, first, in parts, etc., then the Negative wins the net-benefit and unhinges the perm. In short, I default to net-benefits to determine whether or not the perm is legit, but the negative and Affirmative teams need to do the work here. Finally on this point, develop a more articulated perm than ďdo both.Ē Run multiple permutations if you can and make them as clear as possible.
Textual competition and functional competition Ė Given the nature of the format Ė limited preparation Ė my prejudices would move me toward a textual competition, (in almost any prepared format I would consider this bogus); however, there are a few exceptions. For instance, if plan does not specify Congress or Executive Order, then one would understand that the function of the plan would through normal means use only one option. (Clearly a bill passed by Congress and signed by the President would not also need an executive order.) Consequently, the Affirmative, like the Negative, gets one advocacy either Congress or XO. Whatever world they do not pick becomes competitive Negative ground insofar as the net-benefit to the counterplan is mutually exclusive with the Affirmative advocacy. As for consultation, which would include an other country or other countries, regulatory negotiation (doubtless a strategy for the environmental topic), mediation, etc., the fundamental structure remains the same. To keep the problems from amassing, clarify the plan in a question or ask for a copy of the plan and then clarify. You already know your CP option based on the disad shell or, hopefully you will prior to standing up, so ask a question or two that will narrow down the Affirmative advocacy and open the space for the CP.


7. Is it acceptable for teams to share their flowed arguments with each other during the round (not just their plans)?

 I could care less about this. Share if everyone agrees. By definition, however, if a team coerces another team into surrendering their flowsheet, then it is no longer sharing. For example, one would not see this use of the term ďsharingĒ as viable:  Iraq shared Kuwaitís oil in 1990; the United States Federal Government shared the Black Hills with the Lakota, etc. For the round, if someone declines to share a flowsheet, then the matter is over and I will not be inclined to vote on a tattle-tale procedure (TT spec.):  ďUhÖthe Negative didnít give me a copy of their CP text, DA text, procedurals textsĒ etc. so that was unfair. Too bad. I will not participate in the co-option of the Negative or Affirmativeís physical and intellectual property. With that said, given the importance of the plan text for the debate, I will expect the Affirmative and the Negative to yield to questions that both repeat the plan text and allow for further clarification of the plan text.  Without CX (hopefully that will change some day), there has to be some mechanism for explaining the central concerns of the plan. If the Affirmative and Negative find it more time beneficial to hand the other team a copy of plan text than to repeat it, then great. That should leave more time for clarifying questions and the Affirmative or Negative to generate the position. If either team should refuse to slow down and provide the plan text orally or give a copy, then I would be most interested in a criticism.


8. In the absence of debaters' clearly won arguments to the contrary, what is the order of evaluation that you will use in coming to a decision (e.g. do procedural issues like topicality precede kritiks which in turn precede cost-benefit analysis of advantages/disadvantages, or do you use some other ordering?)? In the absence of a clean debate, I will defer to the frameworks for each position Ė the criticism against the procedural Ė and then make my decision. If that doesnít work, then I will consider the procedurals first, particularly topicality, and make may way through the rest. If my answer seems confused now, imagine how confused it would be during the round. Just avoid confusing me.


9. How do you weight arguments when they are not explicitly weighed by the debaters or when weighting claims are diametrically opposed? How do you compare abstract impacts (i.e. "dehumanization") against concrete impacts (i.e. "one million deaths")? I intervene when debaters do not explain things or weigh them out. Dehumanization sounds pretty awful to me, so depending upon the way people die in the scenario, I might be inclined to vote for dehumanization; e.g. nuclear conflict kills a million versus dehumanization of three million. Of course, it could go the other way, I might feel at that moment nuclear war is worse. It would be exactly how a normal person (not a debate judge) would operate on any given day. Is this bad given what I know and the present circumstances? Is this bad? Hmmm. Avoid putting me in the position. If no one impacts the arguments, tells a story, etc., then I cannot see how they could object to virtually any impact calculus I bring to the table.




Keith Corley - William Jewell College

Saved Philosophy:

My name is Keith Corley and I currently am the Assistant Debate Coach at William Jewell College. My experience in the activity is 2 years at Moorpark College and 3 years at Concordia University Irvine. My goal with this philosophy is to try and be as honest as possible with those who read it as it is my experience that quite a few individuals tend to mislead in order to be part of the in group.

KvsPolicy: During my debate career I spent a majority of it debating policy and case debate. That being said my final year in the activity I debated the K more than 70% of the time. As far as policy debate goes, I expect warrants for arguments. I know that all judges says this but I want to make it extremely clear that you need specific warrants to back up your claims. If you do not have it, often times I will accept the other team to just articulate a lack of warrants in order to refute the argument. Other than that I feel like I view policy in the same way that almost every other person does.

Theory: When I was debating I was really into theory debate, it was something that I really enjoyed winning on. While I am more than willing to listen to you read these, I think it should be pointed out that I really dislike listening to theory that is not strategic or meaningful, aka something that is meant just to waste the other team's time. More often than not I think that the questions that theory is asking is important and as such in this aspect of the debate I do not like gamesmanship.

 Conditionality I was coached by Kevin Calderwood and while I buy into his thoughts in regards to conditionality I want to make it clear that I do not think that one conditional advocacy is necessarily bad. That being said I will definitely listen to a condo bad shell for a variety of reasons. Specifically, I suggest you not run an argument such as whiteness or fem conditionally as I believe that is ethically bankrupt. However, I will not vote anyone down for this if the other team does not win a condo bad theory position.

The K: Like I said, I ran these quite a bit during my last year, however, I do not want you to think that I am up on every single bit of critical literature. I prefer a very explained out thesis for K's that arent cap or something basic. Additionally, you need to explain to me in a very clear way what the alt text does. I truly dislike utopian alternatives with no explanation as to how they function. As far as K's on the aff go I am fine with them, but I would prefer you to make it resolutional. I do not need you to make it topical or use fiat (though that can and should be argued by the neg if they so choose) but I would prefer if the resolution was incorporated somewhere.

Miscellaneous If you only read one part of my philosophy please read this part: Debate was my home and identity for a long time. However, I realize that they type of debate and the space in which I engage in it are not home for many people that do not have my privilege. I want everyone to be able to run the type of arguments that make them feel most at home. That being said, I think that on some occasion in an effort to run arguments that they feel most comfortable with debaters will do so at the expense of the team that they are facing. What I mean by this is that I believe there is a way to run arguments that do not make your opponent feel like shitty people. I understand that some arguments can get real. I think those arguments are fantastic. However, I do not think that it is beneficial for anyone involved to traumatize someone in order to win a ballot. I believe that this space is a place for us to grow an think and learn a bunch of new and different types of education that aren't offered anywhere else whether that be upper level international relations or very critical queer theory. My belief is that our community is at our best when people can experience these hard truths without being brought to tears because the round made them feel like shit. My last note is that most of the fastest speakers in the community often times were not clear enough for me to flow at full speed. If you believe you are in this group please drop to 80% of your speed or wait for me to clear you, whatever you prefer.

 

TL;DR THESE ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT ME

1.     Do not make the other team want to leave the activity

2.     No matter what you are running, please make sure that you have a solvency that explains how your plan, alt, advocacy, etc. function

3.     I NEED WARRANTS

4.     Please for the love of god somebody do impact calculus

5.     Totally down with theory, just not as a time suck

6.     If you make a good Hamilton reference, 30 speaks

 

 




Lauran Schaefer - William Jewell College

Saved Philosophy:

Overall, I honestly want debaters to do what they do best in round. I do have a few caveats, however. First, I was never a theory debater and I can get lost in them very easily. I would suggest a few things, most importantly, slow down on the most relevant parts of the theory debate, specifically interpretations. So be advised, I need a clear story and proven abuse to feel comfortable with a decision on theory. I understand in some cases where the other team meets your interpretation, but you donít have any good positions to go for, in that case be as clear as possible. Second, I prefer probability to magnitude and I will explain that in a later section.‚Ä®‚Ä®

‚Ä®‚Ä®Iím probably too generous with speaker points. I generally give between a 27-29 and avoid 30ís unless the speech is close to perfect. If the round is full of speakers who are generally at the same level, I default to giving the best a 29, the second best a 28.5, etc. (Rob Layne is quickly making me change my point fairy-ness, so bear with me.)‚Ä®‚Ä®

‚Ä®‚Ä®I really like critical debates. Affirmatives can run critical arguments, but I think they need a clear framework with an interpretation and standards. Specifically, tell me why this particular critical aff is warranted. Your interpretation canít be some ďreject blah blahĒ that are somehow mutually exclusive and some bs solvency telling me how the world will all of a sudden change their mindsets from collapsing some ďism.Ē Although, I ran arguments like that, I now see that made me a bad debater.  Explain your solvency. What does the world look like after the action is taken? ‚Ä®‚Ä®Performance based argumentsÖ‚Ä®‚Ä®Iím fine with them, but I need to know how to evaluate them.

Topicality. What do you require to vote on topicality? Is in-round abuse necessary? Do you require competing interpretations? ‚Ä®

Like I said, I prefer proven abuse. Competing interpretations is probably your best bet. Iím not sure I would even know what to do with out one unless youíre critiquing T.

Counterplans -- PICs good or bad? Should opp identify the status of the counterplan? Perms -- textual competition ok? functional competition?‚Ä®

PICs are a good strategy. The opp should identify the status IF they are asked to, otherwise itís fair game. Perms should be functional in my ideal debate world. If youíre going to go textual comp youíll probably want to run more theory than you would with functional telling me why I should prefer it. ‚Ä®‚Ä®

Is it acceptable for teams to share their flowed arguments with each other during the round (not just their plans)‚Ä®

I think as a courtesy, you should always give a copy of any plan text or counterplan text, especially if asked. I donít care if teams want to share anything other than that.‚Ä®

In the absence of debaters' clearly won arguments to the contrary, what is the order of evaluation that you will use in coming to a decision (e.g. do procedural issues like topicality precede kritiks which in turn precede cost-benefit analysis of advantages/disadvantages, or do you use some other ordering?)?‚Ä®

Procedurals are obviously first. Next, I would go to framework, if necessary, to determine if the K comes first. Then the substance. I default to the impact debate. 



How do you weight arguments when they are not explicitly weighed by the debaters or when weighting claims are diametrically opposed? How do you compare abstract impacts (i.e. "dehumanization") against concrete impacts (i.e. "one million deaths")?‚Ä®‚Ä®I look to probability, first. Then magnitude. Finally, timeframe. If you want me to vote on huge impacts that are incredibly unrealistic, you should warrant exactly how these impacts will occur. Not some x country is pissed, the US gets involved, boom, big explosion because some random action causes a war in which rational actors would absolutely have to use nuclear weapons and it would cause a dust cloud that covers the sun. Although I did this, itís because I had no idea if what I was saying was actually true.





Other Things: 
Making fun of Colin Patrick would make me smile. Forrest Gump, Keith Stone and Honey BooBoo references are a good idea.

 

 




Kyle Dennis - William Jewell College

Saved Philosophy:

Name: Kyle Dennis
School: William Jewell College

 

 

I record nearly all of the debates that I judge on my MacBook. During the debate, you will see me creating position/answer markers so that I can easily recall any portion of the debate during my decision. I have developed a basic system to govern the conditions under which I will review the recordingó (1) if I think I have missed something (my fault) I will note the time in the recording on my flow, (2) if there is a question about exact language raised by the debaters in the round, (3) if there is a Point of Order about new arguments in rebuttals, (4) I will review the exact language of any CP/Alt Text/ Theory Interp. Outside of those circumstances, I typically will not review recordings.

 

This new process has had a couple of important impacts on judging. I donít miss arguments. I will take as much time to review the debate afterwards if I believe that Iíve maybe missed something. It has made my decisions clearer because I can hold debaters accountable to exact language. It does, however, mean that I am less likely to give PMRís credit for new explanations of arguments that werenít in the MG. It also means that Iím more likely to give PMRís flexibility in answering arguments that werenít ďclearĒ until the MOC. I donít provide the recording to anyone (not even my own team). Within reason, I am happy to play back to you any relevant portions that I have used to make my decision.

 

If you have questions about this process, please ask. I encourage my colleagues to adopt this practice as well. It is remarkable how it has changed my process.

 

If your team chooses to prefer (or, in the case of the NPDA, not strike) me, there are a couple of promises that I will make to you:

I understand that the debaters invest a tremendous amount of time and energy into preparing for a national tournament. I believe that judging any round, especially national tournament rounds, deserves a special level of attention and commitment. I try not to make snap decisions at nationals and it bothers me when I see other people do it. I know that my NPTE decisions take longer than I will typically take making a similar decision during the rest of the year. If you spend 4 years doing something, I can at least spend a few extra moments thinking it over before I potentially end that for you. 

 

I flow on paper. I find that I am more connected to the debate and can deliver more complete RFDs if I am physically writing down arguments rather than typing. When I watch my colleagues multi-tasking while judging debates, I am self-conscious that I used to do the same thing. You will have my complete attention. I can also guarantee you that my sleep schedule at tournaments will not hinder my ability to give you my full attention. I have made a substantial commitment to wellness and, if I am being honest, I have seen/felt significant improvements in my life and my ability to do my job at debate tournaments. Once again, you will have my complete attention.

 

Finally, I can tell you that I have come to a point that I am unwilling to categorically reject any argument. I have voted for negative teams with a 1NC strategy of a K, CP, DA, and case arguments (who collapse to an MO strategy of the criticism only) more times this year than I ever thought I would. Smart debaters win debates with a variety of strategiesóI donít think that I should limit your strategy choices. The debate isnít about me. If we canít embrace different styles of argument, this activity gets very annoying very quickly.

 

If I get to judge you, there are a couple of promises that I want you your team to make to me:

Please slow down when you read plan texts, theory interpretations or perm texts unless you are going to take the time to write out a copy and provide it to me. Please do not get upset if I misunderstand something that you read quickly (an alt, for example) if you didnít give me a copy. I will review exact text language on my recording, if necessary.

 

Please do your best to engage the other team. I like watching critique debates, for example, in which the affirmative team engages the criticism in a meaningful way rather than reading common framework or theory objections.

 

Please make all of your interpretations on theory as clear as you possibly can. This isnít exactly the same as asking you to read it slowlyófor example, a PICS Bad debate should have a clear interpretation of what a ďPICĒ is to you. I have generally come to understand what most members of the community mean by ďtextual versus functionalĒ competitionóbut, again, this is a theory debate that you need to explain clearly. 

 

Finally, please do not assume that any of your judges are flowing/comprehending every single word that youíre saying at top speed. As long as I have been involved in this activity, the most successful debaters have recognized that there is an element of persuasion that will never go away. I think that the quickness/complexity of many of the debaters have far surpassed a sizeable chunk of the judging pool. I often listen to my colleagues delivering decisions and (in my opinion) many struggle or are unwilling to admit that portions of the debate were unwarranted, unclear, and difficult to understand.

 

I have often observed an undue burden to make sense of 2-3 second blips placed on critics by debatersóthis activity doesnít work unless you help me to understand what is important. I have the perspective to acknowledge that if a critic doesnít vote for one of my teams, that there is something that we could have done better to win that ballot. I would simply ask that you dial back your rate of delivery slightly. Understand that there are times that slowing down makes sense to put all of the arguments in context. The most successful teams already do this, so I donít imagine that this is a very difficult request.

 

Other notes:

I flow the LOR on a separate sheet of paper. My speaker point range is 27-30. I donít give out many 30ís, but I am happy to give quite a few 29ís. I will protect you from new arguments (or overly abusive clarifications of arguments) in the rebuttals. I will be involved in all aspects of prep with my team. Regardless of what I would disclose, for me, clarity is your best bet. I generally advise my teams to assume that your judges donít know what youíre talking about until you tell them. I generally try to remove my previously existing understanding from the debate as much as possible.

 

TL, DR: I want to make the best decision that I can, given the arguments in the debate. If Iím going to end your NPTE, I will do so thoughtfully and with my full attentionóthatís a promise. Make the debate about you, not me. I love this activity and all of the people in it. I make a conscious effort to approach decisions (especially at nationals) with respect for the activity and the people in the debate.




Joel Reed - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy:

Joel Reed

Graduate Teaching Assistant- University of Missouri

NDT/CEDA Debater for 4 Years @ Missouri State

NDT/CEDA Graduate Assistant Coach for 2 Years

NFALD Graduate Assistant Coach for 1 Year

 

Be clear. Speed is a strategic tool only insofar as I can understand what you are saying and transcribe it, in some form, onto my flow. As long as there is clarity, speed does not detract from the persuasiveness of your appeal (sorry, Cicero).

I think that most things are debatable. With that said, I think that some things are a waste of time to debate. I have little desire to listen to your poem about how the time cube means that the Mayans really thought the world would end in 2027.

 

The flow is very important to the debate but only insofar as it helps me to evaluate arguments. An argument consists of a claim and a warrant. I will write down both. A claim without a warrant will get very little weight from me when making my decision. I only expect the opposing team to respond to arguments with a claim and a warrant.

 

Topicality should be a strategic option. Itís the affís job to define what they mean by reasonability.

 

Theory- I enjoy these debates. My default on theory is to reject the argument and not the team. Counterplans- I would much rather listen to a topic specific counterplan than states, courts, or xo. I have never voted against a counterplan because it is topical, but perhaps you will be the first one to persuade me.

 

Critiques-As a debater I went for critiques and framework with equal frequency. I am more than happy to vote for these arguments, and I am more than happy to vote against you for reading them. I will let the arguments in the round be my guide.  I think of the critique like any other argument. There should be a clear alternative text. If you wish to shift the framework for the debate or advocate something other than the text of the alternative that should be very explicit. I have a rather strong preference against dying. Let that guide your argument choices as you will. 

 

Be respectful. If I think you were mean or rude, I will let you know. I will then ask you to publicly apologize before I give my decision. 




Josh Campfield - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy:

Background: I did four years of policy in HS in Missouri. I then did mostly parli in college for SIU then Washburn.

 

General: I hate it when people don't start with a strategy. I'm ok with people initially deploying two or three potential strategies but the collapse has to happen and happen early. Likewise I enjoy the aff building offensive answers into the aff and using them. Argument interaction has to happen. Clash is good. I probably shouldn't have to say that, but I do. I am open to any argument, but as with anyone else I do have particular biases.

 

Specifics:

 

Counterplans- pretty much the only thing that should be said here is that I prefer unconditional counterplans, but if nobody checks the status, feel free to kick it. If you do go for condi good, you better be damn good on theory. However, this does not mean I want to hear you say condi bad.

 

Kritiks/performance- I am down. Biggest problem I have with these debates is when someone just tries to buzz through the debate. This means I probably won't give much weight to ďx leads to dehumĒ unless you explain the process in which a person is stripped of human status, and why that is likely to outweigh something. Dehum justifies all violence isn't good enough. Also, I believe if someone reads a procedural that says you should not have access to your K you should not be able to justify the K using the K. If you want to k the procedural on different grounds, thatís fine but I am very very very susceptible to ďyour answers to our procedural are illogical and beg the questionĒ.

 

T- I default competing interps, but I'm open for anything. Please impact your standards debate.

 

Disads- please explain interaction between the disad and case. Be strategic. Read the disad to get somewhere more than just an impact.

 

Case debates that actually clash are the key to my heart.

 

Don't be an asshole. You speaks will be dramatically affected.

 

I know this philosophy doesn't really give a super amount of insight. If you have questions, please ask. I would rather let you know I'm not a fan of an argument instead of listening to too much of it. Once again, do anything you want to in the debate round. Its just a game.

 

 




Bryan Paul - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Lauren Johnson - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Marcus Ferguson - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Nick Benham - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy:

Nick Benham Philosophy

I competed in national-circuit NPDA-NPTE for four years at Mizzou. I graduated in 2017 and am currently a first-year law student at Georgetown University. I coached high school debate (particularly LD and policy) for two years. I also led Mizzouís student-run program for a couple years.

*Disclaimer: I havenít seen or judged a debate since NSDA Nationals last year. I will be rusty. I probably wonít be able to keep up with you at top speed; I should be fine with 70-75%. Iím also not particularly connected with whatever the ~hot arguments~ are right now, so you may have to do a little more work with me as opposed to other judges. I would prefer a copy of any plan, CP, alt, interp, etc. that you give in-round. If thatís not feasible (idk maybe you have like 30 texts) then read them slowly and twice.

Overview: Iíll vote where you tell me to, so long as you tell me clearly and articulate why I should care more about what youíre telling me more than what your opponent is telling me. If you want some other framework besides net-bens, Iíll buy in if you tell me why it matters and win that argument. Run what you want, for the most part! That being said, I am a human with preferences. Policy debate is my bread and butter, but I think the K is neat and Iíll listen to it. I love strong links and impact calculus.

Case Debate! Disads! Iím a fan. Throw any link/impact you want at me, so long as the links make sense and you do impact calculus. I was all over econ and heg arguments as a competitor. I am especially a fan of topic-specific disads, but I think thereís something to be said for tix/pol-cap/what have you in the present political climate. Give me a reason why the political issue matters and why now is key and Iíll be fine.

CPs: Also a fan. I think functional competition is neat and probably value it a little more than textual competition.

Speed/Flow: See above on speed. I can probably keep up with a pretty fast spread; if I canít, I will let you know (probably by yelling something like ďSpeed!Ē) You can be fast, but you have to be clear. If I canít understand you, I canít flow you, and that makes it tough to evaluate your arguments. I will also yell something in that case. I find that I have a better idea of the round as a whole if I flow on paper. That means I probably catch everything youíre telling me, but Iím confident Iíll get the gist, especially with well-reasoned warrants. 

T/Theory: I think itís fun! Iím not going to say I have a low threshold for theory debate, but I do think that well-reasoned standards and voters will be helpful in getting my ballot. Otherwise, Iím hesitant to buy these kinds of arguments. I think competing interps make the most intuitive sense in T debates. I probably wonít vote for an RVI unless thereís just blatant abuse. I enjoy a condo debate as much as the next guy. I generally ran unconditional advocacies as a competitor, but I realize that there is an argument to be made for condo and I will hear those arguments.

The K: I ran critical arguments maybe a quarter of the time in undergrad. Iím also a fan, but I am probably not steeped in whatever literature youíre reading. I did study a bunch of sociology, though, and likely have a working understanding with many prominent authors (I most enjoyed Butler, Foucault, Baudrillard, and Anzaldua, for what itís worth). I am likely a bit rusty, so putting a thesis on your K would be super. I think that framework debate can be really valuable here, and will listen to well-warranted arguments about micropolitics or systemic failure in normative epistemology, or whatever else you have. I basically need strong alternative solvency: itís helpful for me to be able to visualize a world of the alternative and weigh that against the affirmative.

*I have a physical disability; listening to ableism arguments was difficult for me as a debater and will likely be difficult for me as a judge. Iím not sure Iíll be able to separate my experiences from your arguments. You can run it if you want but I thought I would give you a heads-up.

K Aff/Projects, or Whatever Weíre Calling Them: I think this is a fascinating way to challenge the culture of the status quo, and youíre more than welcome to run these arguments in front of me. Again, I am likely not deeply familiar with your literature, so youíll need to give me a thesis or something like that. I would appreciate either a topical aff or a meaningful link to the topic (i.e. why we should reject it).

Speaker Points: Iíll probably start in the 27.5-28 neighborhood and work from there. If you do a great job, I wonít hesitate to give out 29+. Iíll only substantially dock points if youíre disrespectful or unkind to me or your competitors. The easiest way to get good speaks is to make good arguments, but Iíll probably bump your speaks for solid jokes/references. I enjoy 30 Rock, Arrested Development, the works of Allison Janney (on stage and screen), and the San Antonio Spurs.

 




Mitch Herrick - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy: n/a

 


Cody Drolc - Mizzou

Saved Philosophy: n/a