Aaron Alford Appalachian State All
Lance Allen McKendree All
Mark Bentley Appalachian State All
Joe Blasdel McKendree Emergency Only
Quintin Brown McKendree All
Kaitlyn Bull Washburn 1/2
Josh Campfield Hired 1/2
Jackson DeVight Texas Tech 1/2
Steve Doubledee Washburn 1/2
Sarah Dweik Texas Tech 1/2
Trevor Greenan Parli at Berkeley All
David Hansen Texas Tech 1/2
Bailey Hockett Washburn 1/2
Katelyn Johnson Texas Tech 1/2
Ryan Kelly Washburn 1/2
Chris Miles St. Mary’s All
Melissa Munoz Minnesota All
Brent Nicholson McKendree All
Chris Oliver Missouri Emergency Only
Matt Parnell Texas Tech 1/2
Joe Provencher Texas Tech 1/2
Zach Schneider McKendree All
Caitlin Smith Minnesota All
Nadia Steck Lewis & Clark 1/2
Matt Swanson St. Mary’s Emergency Only
Jordan Terry William Jewell All
Adam Testerman Texas Tech 1/2
Brigitte Tripp Hired All
David Worth Rice 1/2
I competed in Parli and IE’s for 4 years at Mckendree and have now coached for 4 years. That means I have a diverse background and have seen a large variety of positions. As a coach, I have watched rounds at traditional tournaments in parli to LD out rounds at nationals. While I am competent in a K debate, I am most comfortable in the case/DA/CP debates. This means that the K needs to be well explained, whether a critical Neg or Aff. For me, in-round abuse is not necessary on T. All CP types are fine, just beat the procedural. I evaluate procedurals first and then move to rest. I tend to weigh the magnitude and probability first in impact calc. You should feel comfortable running most any position in front of me as long as it is well explained and defended.
**I have made some modifications to my judging philosophy to better reflect my view of debate**
Again, if it gets to this point,
you haven’t done your job and I won’t be real happy, and you probably won’t be
happy with my decision. I don’t automatically weigh death more than
dehumanization, but can go either way based on the context and arguments.
Dehumanization is a terminal impact. Well warranted impacts are always
preferred over poorly warranted ones. I greatly prefer systemic impacts over
low probability, high magnitude impacts, but will evaluate impacts on whichever
framework wins out in the round.
Section 1: General Information
Section 2: Specific Inquiries
Typically, my range of speaker points is 27-29, unless something extraordinary happens (good or bad).
I’m open to Ks but I probably have a higher threshold for voting for them than your average judge. I approach the K as a sort of ideological counterplan. As a result, it’s 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, it’s likely to be an uphill battle. As for whether Ks can contradict other arguments in the round, it depends on the context/nature of the K.
Same as above.
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 that’s run – 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 – I’m not sure what a reasonable interpretation is. On topicality, I have an ‘average’ threshold. I don’t vote on RVIs.
On spec, I have a ‘high’ threshold. Unless there is in-round ground abuse, I’m probably not going to vote on spec. I would only run spec arguments in front of me if you’re using it as link insurance for another position and the affirmative refuses to answer your questions.
All things being equal, I have tended to err negative in most CP theory debates (except for delay). I think CPs should be functionally competitive. Unless specified otherwise, I understand counterplans to be conditional. I don’t have a particularly strong position on the legitimacy of conditionality. I think advantage CPs are smart and underutilized.
All things being equal, I evaluate procedural issues first. After that, I evaluate everything through a comparative advantage framework.
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.
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 O’Leary.
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, that’s 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 doesn’t 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. Aff’s be able to defend the case, sometimes as MG’s we get too bogged down prepping for the off case positions, just be sure to be able to defend your case. I think LOC’s 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 don’t 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 don’t 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:
Critical Race Theory
Don’t let this constrain you though, I love to learn new things and don’t mind listening. I will try my best to evaluate your arguments
CP Theory: Read whatever theory related to Counterplans you won’t, if you win it you win it. If you lose it, you lose it.
- 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.
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 I’m 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. I’m 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. I’m 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 you’re 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 won’t 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 RVI’s. I understand the utility of these arguments, but they likely aren’t 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, “vote for us for fairness and education”. 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.).
I’m going to borrow a bit about alternatives directly from Lauren Knoth’s philosophy as it describes my feelings regarding complicated alternatives perfectly.
“***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.”
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 don’t have to read the entire plan text in K debates and instead it is sufficient to say, “do the plan and x”. 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.
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.
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 “x leads to dehum” 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, that’s fine but I am very very very susceptible to “your answers to our procedural are illogical and beg the question”.
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.
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. I’m now a graduate coach at TTU.
- 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 flow…so don’t 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 don’t 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 I’m 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, I’mpretty moderate, so warranted arguments about the wonders of the free market or the necessity of social purging aren’t likely to do well in front of me if your opponent knows what they’re doing.
- For the K:
TL; DR – unless it’s a pretty well-structured criticism that links well and specifically, I’m 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 don’t read your lit base. Most of my issues following those arguments have to do with the use of phrases I’m 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, you’ll 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, you’re 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 I’m 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 I’m open to it. For the affirmative: I’m open to PICs bad but don’t default that way. Well utilized CP strats are beautiful.
Permutations: Permutations are tests of competition, not advocacies. Multiple perms aren’t unfair, but they’re 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 shouldn’t 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 don’t 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 you’d like it. Debate is great.
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.
Sarah Dweik Paradigm
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, public forum, and parli debate, finished my undergraduate degree at Washburn, and am now pursuing my Master's degree at Texas Tech. I’m currently judging for Texas Tech. 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, 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 aren’t 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. I do have an expansive knowledge regarding a lot of different K's, but that doesn't mean that I know everything that you will talk about in the round. I am here to learn just as much as you are. 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. I’m 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 or a mechanism that you make clear to me. I’m willing to listen to framework debates and many times would 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 and gives context within the round of why the debating the resolution, in this case, is bad.
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, and please flag when you're moving on so I can make sure your arguments go where you want them to be. 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 you’re 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. 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. If I don't get your text or interp, I will make sure I have the correct wording in my flow when the round ends.
Procedurals/Theory/T: I enjoy a good T debate and I default to competing interpretations, but this does not mean that I won’t 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 RVI’s. I understand the utility of these arguments, but they likely aren’t 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, “vote for us for fairness and education”. 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. If you are going to read multiple theories, please collapse :D
Disads: I enjoy topic specific disads. However, I also loved reading politics, 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. All disads are great in my book and I will always love hearing them in round.
CPs: I love counter-plans and I regret not reading them as much 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, but if you want to go for textual competition, just show me how to weigh and vote on it.
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.). When reading a K, please give me a clear explanation of what the alternative does and what the post-alt world looks like. Just a bunch of fancy words pushed together doesn't mean that I understand what your K is doing. With the alt, there should also be a stable and clear solvency/alternative ground that allows the other team to have some space to argue against it.
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 don’t have to read the entire plan text in K debates and instead it is sufficient to say, “do the plan and x”. 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 you’re 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 can’t understand your arguments, then we might have a problem. I do love quotes from RuPaul's Drag Race, after all "Facts are facts, America!"
Basically, I want you to come into a round and not think that I would keep you from reading what you want to read. I understand that I won't get every argument read in front of me, but I want to make sure that I am not preventing you from expressing yourself the ways that you want to in this space. This space for me is something extremely important, so I want to make sure that I can at least help it continue to be important for you.
Trevor Greenan Paradigm
I came from a high school parli background, but most of my relevant experience is from the last 3 years with the Parli at Berkeley NPDA team. I competed on-and-off for 3 years, and now exclusively coach/run the program. As a debater I was probably most comfortable with the kritikal debate, but I’ve had a good amount of exposure to most everything in my time coaching the team. A lot of my understanding of debate has come from working with the Cal Parli team, so I tend to err more flow-centric in my round evaluations; that being said, I really appreciate innovative/novel arguments, and did a good amount of performance-based debating as a competitor. I’m generally open to just about any argument, as long as there’s good clash.
§ I try to keep my evaluation of the round as flow-centric as possible. This means that I’ll try to limit my involvement in the round as much as possible, and I’ll pick up the worse argument if it’s won on the flow. That being said, I recognize that there’s a certain degree of intervention that’s inevitable in at least some portion of rounds, and in those cases my aim is to be able to find the least interventionist justification within the round for my decision. For me, this means prioritizing (roughly in this order): conceded arguments, arguments with warranted/substantive analysis, arguments with in-round weighing/framing, arguments with implicit clash/framing, and, worst case, the arguments I can better understand the interactions of.
§ In-round framing and explanation of arguments are pretty important for me. While I will vote for blippier/less developed arguments if they’re won, I definitely have a higher threshold for winning arguments if I feel that they weren’t sufficiently understandable in first reading, and will be more open to new-ish responses in rebuttals as necessary. Also worth noting, I tend to have a lower threshold for accepting framing arguments in the PMR.
§ The LOR’s a tricky speech. For complicated rounds, I enjoy it as a way to break down the layers of the debate and explain any win conditions for the negative. I don’t need arguments to be made in the LOR to vote on them, however, so I generally think preemption of the PMR is a safer bet. I prefer to not flow it on one sheet, but if you strongly prefer that format I’d rather have you do that than throw off your speech for the sake of adapting.
§ I have no preferences on conditionality. Perfectly fine with however many conditional advocacies, but also more than happy to vote on condo bad if it’s read well.
§ Please read advocacy/interp texts slowly/twice. Written texts are always nice.
§ I will do my best to protect against new arguments in the rebuttals, but it’s always better to call the POO just to be safe.
§ I’m open to alternate/less-flow-centric methods of evaluating the round, but I have a very hard time understanding what these alternate methods can be. So, please just try to be as clear as possible if you ask me to evaluate the round in some distinct way.
§ I evaluate shadow-extensions as new arguments. What this means for me is that any arguments that a team wants to win on/leverage in either the PMR or LOR must be extended in the MG/MO to be considered. I'll grant offense to and vote on positions that are blanket extended ("extend the impacts, the advantage is conceded", etc.), but if you want to cross-apply or otherwise leverage a specific argument against other arguments in the round, I do need an explicit extension of that argument.
§ I think the framework debate is often one of the most undeveloped parts of the K debate, and love seeing interesting/well-developed/tricksy frameworks. That being said, absent substantial argumentation either way, I’ll usually defer to each side being able to leverage their advocacy/offence against the other.
§ I have a pretty high threshold for voting on presumption. I find it difficult to buy that either side has actually won terminal defense, absent a good amount of work in the round. That being said, I default to presumption flowing negative.
§ Prior question arguments in framework are fine/good, just make sure that there’s sufficient explanation of these arguments and application to the rest of the round. I’m not very likely to vote on a dropped prior question/independent voter argument if there isn’t interaction done with the rest of the arguments in the round.
§ I generally feel very comfortable evaluating the theory debate, and am more than happy to vote on procedurals/topicality/framework/etc. I’m perfectly fine with frivolous theory. Please just make sure to provide a clear/stable interp text.
§ I default to competing interpretations and drop the team on theory, absent other arguments. Competing interpretations for me means that I evaluate the theory layer through a risk of offense model, and I will evaluate potential abuse. I don’t think this necessarily means the other team needs to provide a counter-interpretation, although I think it definitely makes adjudication easier to provide one.
§ I have a hard time evaluating reasonability without a brightline. I don’t know how I should interpret what makes an argument reasonable or not absent a specific explanation of what that should mean without being interventionist, and so absent a brightline I’ll usually just end up evaluating through competing interpretations regardless.
§ I have a very high threshold on RVIs. If extremely well-developed and extremely mishandled by the other team I could imagine myself voting on one, but I would hope to never have to.
§ Uniqueness determines the direction of the link (absent explanation otherwise), so please make sure you’re reading uniqueness in the right direction.
§ I have a pretty high threshold for terminal defense, and will more often than not assume there’s at least some risk of offense, so don’t rely on just reading defensive arguments.
§ Perfectly fine with generic advantages/disads, and I’m generally a fan of the politics DA. That being said, the more you can contextualize your argument to the round the greater weight that I will give it. Specific and substantial case debates are great.
§ I default to fiat being durable.
§ Please give me specific texts.
§ Fine with cheater CPs, but also more than happy to vote on CP theory.
§ I default that perms are tests of competition and not advocacies.
§ I generally won’t buy textual competition absent arguments in the round telling me why I should.
§ I really enjoy the K debate, and this was probably where I had the most fun as a debater. I have a pretty good understanding of most foundational critical literature, and I have a decent understanding of postmodern theory (particularly Foucauldian/Deleuzian/Derridean). That being said, please make the thesis-level of your criticism as clear as possible; I will do my best to not just vote for an argument I understand absent explanation in-round, and there’s definitely a good amount of literature I won’t know of.
§ I’m perfectly happy to vote on kritikal affirmatives, but I will also gladly vote on framework. On that note, I’m also happy to vote on impact turns to fairness/education, but will probably default to evaluating the fairness level first absent other argumentation.
§ Same with CPs, I default to perms being a test of competition and not an advocacy. I’m also fine with severance perms, but am also open to theoretical arguments against them; just make them in-round, and be sure to provide a clear voter/impact.
§ I default to evaluating the link debate via strength of link, but please do the comparative analysis for me. Open to other evaluative methods, just be clear in-round.
§ I have a decent understanding of performance theory and am happy to vote on performance arguments, but I need a good explanation of how I should evaluate performative elements of the round in comparison to other arguments on the flow.
§ Regarding identity/narrative based arguments, I think they can be very important in debate, and they’ve been very significant/valuable to people on the Cal Parli team who have run them in the past. That being said, I also understand that they can be difficult and oftentimes triggering for people in-round, and I have a very hard time resolving this. I’ll usually defer to viewing debate as a competitive activity and will do my best to evaluate these arguments within the context of the framing arguments made in the round, so please just do your best to make the evaluative method for the round as clear as possible.
David Hansen Paradigm
Hey there! I competed for 2 years at Snow College and 3 years at William Jewell College. I am a second year graduate teaching assistant at Texas Tech University. My preferred pronouns are he/him/his.
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 isn’t an argument.
I tend to believe that recording, sharing, and watching rounds is good for debate.
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.
I’m 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.
PIC’s are usually abusive in NPDA debate, but often strategic and occasionally justified – especially if the topic provides aff flex.
Delay is almost always bad, so are process CP’s.
These are fine. I read them a lot, went for them occasionally. Please provide early thesis-level analysis. I think most K shells I’ve 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.
MG’s should be more willing to go hard right (or left) to answer K’s. The aff probably links to Cap, but there is SUBSTANTIAL lit in favor of cap.
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 can’t 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 it’s as simple as you need to keep debating, but you need a reason.
I debated for 4 years on the NPTE/NPDA circuit at Washburn University. I competed in policy debate in high school for 4 years. I am now pursuing my J.D. at KU.
Overview: I think that debate is a game. Do what you can justify. 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. I do tend to buy abuse stories for condo bad theory (i.e. if youre going to read a conditional strategy, you should have some killer answers to condo bad).
I’ll do my best to protect from new arguments in rebuttals, but feel free to call them.
Impact calc is huge and seems to be disappearing from parli.
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, whatever your advocacy may be. 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.
I’m willing to listen to framework debates.
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.
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/interp and repeat it. Not doing so can make debates impossible to judge and follow.
I LOVE theory. I default to competing interpretations, but this does not mean that I won’t listen to other frameworks for evaluating T, especially if there is only one framework. I do not need real in round abuse, but an abuse story needs to exist even if it is potential abuse. I view topicality similarly to a DA in that I view your interp as the uniqueness – what the case should be, violation as the links – what did they do to affect the UQ, and the standards are the internal links to the voters which are the impacts.
read ‘em. Perm ‘em.
I need a clear thesis for any complicated criticism. How can you tell if it’s too complicated and needs a thesis? If you/your coach are questioning if it’s complicated, it probably is. I also need a clear depiction of what your post alt world looks like.
I enjoy criticisms and they certainly have a place in parli. Perm, perm well, and perm often.
Katelyn Johnson Paradigm
Hey all! To start, my judging philosophy is probably similar to David Hansen’s. 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 David’s.
I started my debate career at Snow College where I did NPDA and IE’s 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 it’s not about the judges, it’s 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 don’t 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 “clear” or “speed”.
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 isn’t 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 can’t explain what standards like “limits” mean. Generally, I’ve 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.
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, I’ll def vote against condo bad.
PIC’s 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 CP’s.
These are fine. I read them a lot, went for them occasionally. Please provide early thesis-level analysis. I think most K shells I’ve 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.
MG’s should be more willing to go hard right (or left) to answer K’s. The aff probably links to Cap, but there is SUBSTANTIAL lit in favor of cap.
***I do have a much higher threshold for psycho analysis K’s (Lacan, Derrida, etc). This is partly because I get frustrated with how these arguments are so different then how their authors wrote them. I also generally dislike continental philosophy. If this is your baby, go for it. Just make sure you clearly explain what your K is and don’t over rely on jargon.***
I think performance arguments can be amazing. However, most teams do a terrible job of justifying why they don’t 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 aff’s 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 can’t 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 it’s as simple as you need to keep debating, but you need a reason.
Ryan Kelly – Washburn University
My Background: I debated for four years NPDA/NPTE circuit for Washburn University. I debated for four years in high school policy debate, LD, and PFD. Graduated in 2017 from Washburn with a BA in International Business and Marketing with minors in Leadership Studies and Communications. I currently attend law school at the University of Kansas.
o ***First, before all else. When you read a text, interpretation, or anything in that ilk, please slow down and read it twice. I think that the text is important and it will only help you to make sure everyone has it down correctly. Thx buddies.***
o Generally, I believe that debate is a game. (“Do what you can justify” – Doubledee.) But, within that framework, if either team raises the argument that debate is more than just a game for certain bodies or purposes, I think that type of framing for the debate round is valid and I will weigh that. I think that framing can certainly be used to weigh certain impacts as more important than others when done well. I do believe, though, that framing argument should come with robust warrant/grounds--meaning, explain why debate is more than just a game, the benefits to that outlook, etc. Absent this, my general default is that debate is a game.
o I have a preference for unconditional advocacies, but if you want to debate condo, I won’t vote you down right away or anything like that.
o Familiar arguments/debates: politics, hegemony, queerness/heteronornmativity (most familiar here), feminism, anthropocentrism, whiteness, anti-blackness, and other identity arguments. I am also familiar with militarism, cap, and overconsumption. I read Agamben quite a bit my frosh year and am familiar with Lacanian based arguments….a bit. My critical knowledge is more based on identity type arguments, though.
o I think that if your argument is very complex, a thesis at the beginning will help out with my understanding.
o At the end of the day, the most important line of argumentation to me is what the post-world of the negative and the affirmative look like, and weighing between the implications of those two worlds.
o I place a high emphasis on the LOR. It was my favorite speech to give and I come from the school of Lauren Knoth in believing it can arguably be the most important speech in the debate, or a huge waste.
· Identity/Performance/Critical Arguments
o I am fine with these types of arguments and I think that they can lead to very valid discussions in debate.
o I think that these types of arguments are most persuasive when they have an advocacy. This advocacy can be a metaphor, poem, alternative, or even the lack of an advocacy if that is explained well. Kaitlyn and I read a metaphor for our narrative affirmative, and Ian and I read a critical affirmative without an advocacy, but had justifications for that implicit in the argument. Thus, do what you can justify.
o I believe that it is important to explain the post-AFF world in this situation, just the same as when a K is read on the negative. Even if the post-AFF world is supposed to be a change to the debate space, explain what that change is and why your AFF can achieve that.
o That said, I also think that Framework can be used as a response, if it is done appropriately. I think that Framework is most valid when read as a counter-method by the negative, rather than based more in the procedural impacts. I think there is a distinction between Framework and Topicality, and you are less likely to win my ballot if you read T against an AFF in this category rather than Framework.
o I should be able to keep up, but I’ll let you know if I need you to slow down, likely by saying “slow.” (To me, there is a distinction between “slow” and “clear”. If your speed is fine but I can’t understand the words you are saying, I will say “clear”. If you are going too quickly, I will say “slow”. I’ll try to keep those two as distinct as possible to help.)
o I will likely flow on paper, but may flow on a computer. Either way, give some pen time and time to switch pages. (I was not great at remembering to do this when I was a debater, so I understand that it’s hard to remember when you just want to move to the next argument, but do your best to remember to allow time. J ).
o On the topic of speed, I enjoyed very fast debate. I thought it was a fun skill that is unique to the activity. Despite this, do not use speed when you do not need to. I think debate is about actually having a debate. If you spread someone out of a debate, are you really debating? In my opinion, not really. Engage with the other team as much as you can to facilitate an actual debate. Also, you do not have to be able to spread to win. Ian Mikkelsen is a great example of this. He never went very quickly, but his slow spread was just as effective. Through limiting your word economy and making your speech as efficient as possible, a “slow” speaker can make more arguments than a “fast” debater any day. But, I liked fast debates when I debated, so I don’t have a problem with them whatsoever.
o Repeated from above, please repeat your interpretations slowly and twice. This is especially important here.
o I am a fan of a good T debate. I think that collapsing is critical in those debates. I also believe the LOR should give a full speech when the negative goes for T/Theory. That LOR time is not just prep for the PMR if it is done correctly.
o RVIs – I think that you should make an RVI if it is strategic. (Hold your shade about RVIs…to me, they are a tool just like anything else). I doubt that you will win my ballot on an RVI, but I definitely see the utility of making the argument.
o A pet peeve of mine is when debaters arrive at the voters section and simply say “and this is a voter for fairness and education.” In fact, I’m not even sure that I would evaluate those as voters. Explain your voters—they are the impact to your theory argument.
o I am usually most persuaded by theory arguments when they are applied to parli specifically.
o MG theory is fine by me, as long as it doesn’t make the debate a mess to deal with. I see no point in spreading yourself out with a litany of small theory arguments. In my opinion, your time is better served making more offense elsewhere.
o Topic specific DA’s are great! As are other DA’s.
o I have a high threshold for Politics DA’s because they were one of my favorite arguments to read and research. The link analysis should be very specific, hopefully including vote counts and other specifics such as that.
o I think counterplans are underutilized in debate (by myself included when I was debating with Kaitlyn—emphasis on Advantage CP’s, sorry for letting you down Brent Nicholson). We always wished we would’ve read more of them.
o Functional competition is most persuasive to me, but I can also understand arguments about textual competition.
o I think the K is a great argument in debate and I welcome it. (I also like policy/topic debates, don’t think you should just read the K right away if I judge you.)
o I need a clear alternative. If you have an alt that includes lots of specific, high-brow language in it, please have solvency points that explain those terms.
o To me, the most important part of the K is the explanation of the post-alternative world. What happens after the K’s alternative is accepted? Paint me a picture of that world. I think a K without a well explained alternative is just unending criticism, and I am not sure that is enough to overwhelm an affirmative’s change to the status quo.
o Stolen form Kaitlyn’s philosophy, because I feel the same (it’s like we were partners or something): “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 don’t have to read the entire plan text in K debates and instead it is sufficient to say, “do the plan and x”. 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.”
o Test of competition: The way I view the permutation is that it is a hypothetical test of competition of the two advocacies happening together (generally, I know there are other permutations sequences). I think that if there are net benefits to said hypothetical test that outweigh its absence, then those net benefits can be used to say there is not competition because there is only net good that occurs from the world of the two things happening in concert.
· Also, have fun! Be nice to one another, while still being competitive. If you have any questions, please ask.
Mid-season change for NPDA/NPTE I am really annoyed by the amount of theory arguments that I have been judging. I will be massively increasing my threshold on these arguments and will generally default to reasonability for most arguments besides topicality. I will also probably cap your speaker points at like 27.
TOO LONG DIDN’T READ: You do you. If you bring me chai I will give block 30’s. If you have questions then ask me.
I am a former debater for FOHS, KCKCC, and Missouri Western State University. I have been involved in HS policy, NPDA/NPTE, and CEDA/NDT for 10 years. I debated many styles. People never read these, but here is a tldr.
The K if it’s your thing then do it. I don’t care that much about FW in the LOC/1NC. Have overviews and link package. I hate R.O.B comes first claims. Explain things to me.
Theory Slow down for the interp. Proven abuse is better. Simple interps are good. Multiple violations bad. If reading multiple theory positions put them on different sheets. read standards and voters.
Topicality (see above) I prefer pseudo topical to not topical.
DA/ CP Read them. Good advantage cp’s are nice.
Perms are test of competition. I think external net-benefits to permutations are the worst, don’t do them. read 1 and explain it. I treat them like text, so I prefer you slow down and read them twice.
Offense vs. Defense Read both. Will vote on terminal defense.
Aff’s have one. don’t say try or die 200 times. read internal link arguments. Be inherent. Be consistent.
Method/Performance I like knowing what the method is to a performance argument is and think that both are equally important and should be defended. I think that these arguments in general should have a method that is helpful for more than just the reader.
This philosophy should give you a look into the way I think, but I believe that it will be totally sufficient given my outlook on debate. In the past, I’ve tried to be comprehensive, but I think that that lead to folks misinterpreting my thoughts on debate. Do not take my brevity to mean that I don’t have thoughts about debate, but rather that I think my own opinions ought not matter to you as a debater – this is, after all, your activity.
My goal as a judge is to adapt to the round that the debaters have. This may seem to be empty to y’all, and that’s fine, but my goal as a coach and judge is to facilitate debate rounds that debaters want to have. I feel capable of judging any debate and would encourage you to do you when I am your judge.
With that said, you’ll probably want a few things that I start off with to keep in mind.
- I assume all negative advocacies are conditional unless stated otherwise.
- I think timeframe and probability are more important than magnitude, but no one ever does the work, so I end up voting for extinction impacts.
- Give your opponents’ arguments the benefit of the doubt. They’re probably better than you give them credit for and underestimating them will hurt your own chances of winning.
- Role of the ballot arguments do not make sense to me: if you have to win that the aff/neg does something good to meet the role of the ballot, it seems like you’ve already won the regular-old impact debate. Keep trying! But be aware that I was probably already voting for you if you won an impact.
Experience: I'm new to this style of debate having participated in Cross Ex and Lincoln Douglas 20+ years ago. I'm a PhD Student in Theatre with a specialization in Performance in a new Media Age. I study Performance in all forms from television to sports to politics and diplomacy.
I teach my students to approach a problem, we must eliminate good, bad, right, and wrong. We have to dive into the details and choices we make as human beings. We must learn to make choices and defend our choices and learn from the process.
Matthew Parnell Paradigm
A COUPLE IMPORTANT ADDITIONS FOR MILE HIGH SWING TWO
1) Have texts ready to give to the other team WHEN YOU ENTER THE ROUND. I'm getting frustrated with teams saying "we won't start flex until we have a text." Everyone should just bring a copy of the text and interp to round.
2) I will not spot you claims without warrants. If you say "cross apply X argument" without explaining the warrant and context of the argument, I will have a harder time considering the argument.
Section 1: General information
I debated four years of high school policy and then another five in parli at Washburn. I believe that offense will win you most debate rounds as long as it’s packaged well enough. As a debater, I read a lot of different positions but there is a soft spot in my heart for politics + counterplan debate. I can hang with most positions however if you’re reading something new, you might wanna go a bit slower so I can jive with what you’re reading. I will say that theory is my jam. I won’t vote for silly theory (I mean I might if you win it) but I do love really good and deep theory debates. Overall, I’ll vote on the framework that you present. I’ll default to an offense vs. defense paradigm but if you want me to evaluate the round differently, you gotta let me know.
Identity/Performance/Critical Arguments: I view these arguments very similarly as I do Ks. Provide a clear advocacy, or at least some form of tangible action and tell me why that action is key to resolve your links. Provide a clear way for me to weight the debate through impacts. At the core, I believe your argument should have some sort of linkage to the topic. I’m not asking you to be topical, but I am asking for at least a little time in the PM/LO dedicated to a discussion of the topic.
Flowing: I need like a second of pen time between positions. If you have any particular questions about my flow, just ask. Essentially I will vote based on what I have on my flow. I’m a big fan of debaters who organize well.
Texts and Interps: Slow down when you read plan/cp/alt texts. I think texts are pretty important to the round and I want to ensure that I understand what the text of your arg is.
Procedurals/Theory/T: I love theory. That doesn’t mean I like really silly theory but a really intense and deep theory debate is fantastic. I need interps to be said slowly. I think that if you collapse to theory you need to be doing the work on the voter level. So many times, debaters blip out fairness and education and call it good however if you go for theory, give me actual, termialized impacts to those claims. I will vote on potential abuse but you need to tell me why I am doing so. It makes me happy to see debaters having an in depth theory debate. Generally I think condo is bad however I am not rigid in that interpretation. I will vote on condo strats and condo good if you’ve won the flow.
DAs: Read them. The more specific the link story the better. I was a politics debater so I enjoy a good politics debate. I do have a high threshold when it comes to the uniqueness question of a politics disad so give actual details i.e. who is voting for what, vote counts, etc.
CPs: Also read them. I really like creative counterplans. If you read a counterplan, make sure you have a net benefit attached.
Ks: These are also fine. Please explain what the alternative does however. I’m willing to pull the trigger on any K however I need an explanation of how the alternative resolves the links page. Also try not to slam a bunch of postmodern terms together and call it good. The alt advocates a particular action so please, tell me what that action is. I’m at least baseline familiar with most lit bases however if you’re breaking something completely new, give a small thesis at the top of the shell.
Perms: Perms are fine and you should be making them. You don’t have to read the entire perm text for me. Just say Perm do X and here are the net benefits. Perms are a test of competition but if you want me to treat it as an advocacy, you better make that argument.
Speaker points: I’ll start at 28 and go up or down. If you give a good speech with solid arguments, you’ll be rewarded. If I can’t understand you, you will be punished. I’ll really only give less than a 26 for things such as hate speech, hyper aggression, etc.
This is your space so you do what you want. I will judge what you want me to judge. I only ask that you be considerate of the other people in the room.
Joseph Provencher Paradigm
The allegory of the cornbread:
Debate is like a delicately constructed thanksgiving
dinner. Often, if you take time to make sure you don’t serve anyone anything
they’re allergic to, we can all grit it and bear it even if we really didn’t
want to have marshmallows on our sweet potatoes. Mashed potatoes and gravy are
just as good as cranberry relish if you make it right. Remember, If you’ve been
invited to a thanksgiving dinner you should show up unconditionally unless you
have a damn good excuse or your grandma got hit by a reindeer because we’re
here to eat around a point of commonality unless your great uncle happens to be
super racist. Then don’t go to thanksgiving. I’ll eat anything as long as
you’re willing to tell me what’s in it and how to cook it. Remember, you don’t
prepare stuffing by making stuffing, that’s not a recipe that’s a tautology. I
eat a lot, I’m good at eating, and I’d love to help you learn how to eat and
PS: And why thanksgiving? Because you’re other options are Christmas featuring a man way too old to be doing that job asking if you’ve been naughty or nice at the hotel lobby, the Easter bunny which is just a man way older than you’d think he is in a suite offering kids his definitely-not-sketchy candy (who maybe aren’t really even old enough to be eating all that candy), or Labor Day where everyone realizes they can’t wear their hoods and be fashionable at the same time.
Hi! I’m Zach. I debated for 5 years of NPDA/NPTE parli (4 at Cedarville University and 1 at SIU) and this is my fourth year coaching/judging.
I used to have a much longer philosophy, but I deleted most of it. The vast majority of my specific argumentative thoughts reflect who I was as a debater, not who I am as a judge. As a judge, I’ve really stopped caring about most ideological preferences; I mostly just want to see you excel at whatever it is you do best. I also keep a Google doc of stats about my decisions if you want to find out how I historically have evaluated arguments in your preferred genre.
With that said, here’s what I think is the foundation of how I structurally understand/evaluate debates:
· I fundamentally believe that the aff team should defend the topic (or some advocacy, anyway) and the neg team should say that the aff is bad. I am very unlikely to vote negative if the neg does not have links to the aff, even if the neg also has good arguments or is “more correct” in the abstract. This also means I think the aff always gets a perm, even in a “methods debate” (I also think every debate is about methods).
· I think that the rotating topic is one of the best things about parli, so I am somewhat inclined to think aff teams should defend the topic (or at least adapt their K aff to the topic). I still vote for plenty of untopical aff teams, but I also end up voting for framework a fair amount.
· I generally think that every high-level debate is won on warrant depth/comparison and impact calculus – whether it’s a policy debate, K debate, framework or T, etc. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a rebuttal with too much impact calculus. In any good debate, both sides will be winning a lot of arguments; the next-level teams are the ones that can then compare those arguments and tell me why their winning set is more important.
· When I split with other judges on panels in high-level rounds, it’s usually because I am very technical as a judge. I keep a tight flow and I am most likely to vote for the team that is correctly identifying and leveraging the arguments they’ve won on the flow (even if I think the other team is correct on some deeper level or outside the context of debate). This is the best way I’ve found to remove my biases and make myself predictable as a judge: if your flow has the same arguments as mine (and the same extensions/comparisons) then you should rarely be surprised by my decision.
· 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.
· I respect and appreciate teams that are willing to stake out their argument and defend it, pretty much regardless of what that argument is. I love courageous, gutsy, nuanced arguments. In contrast, I am usually annoyed by arguments that I perceive to be running away from the substance of the debate (such as generic spec or random nitpicky theory arguments).
If you’re reading my philosophy to find out whether you should read argument X, you should probably assume I’m ambivalent towards it, and in general I’d rather you think “what do we want to read” or “what is strategic in this debate” not “what is Zach’s favorite argument.” I think I’m a competent judge in just about any debate and I’m happy to watch you do whatever it is you do best.
I debated 4 years of NPDA/NPTE parli in college for Wheaton College (graduated in May) and 4 years of LD in high school. I’m 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. I’m fine with speed and will clear you if you pass my threshold (which is unlikely). Please say all plans/CP’s/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.
I’ll 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 you’re clear, there shouldn’t be a problem, just don’t expect me to know what various terms or abbreviations mean off the bat.
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.
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.
I debated lots of K’s 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 don’t assume I know your literature. I will vote on what is said in the round, not my prior knowledge of your particular author.
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 don’t 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 I’m 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 don’t say this because I anticipate any such problem, but simply because it is a very real concern for my mental health.
26-30, unless you do something very rude or exclusionary.
Nadia here, I am currently the Coach for Lewis and Clark’s debate team I graduated from Concordia University Irvine where I debated for 2 years, before that I debated for Moorpark College for 3 years. I’m gonna give you a TL:DR for the sake of prep time/pre-round strategizing, I want my personal opinions to come into play as little as possible in the debate round. I want the debate to be about what the debaters tell me it should be about, be it the topic or something totally unrelated. I am fairly familiar with theory, policy, and critical debate. I don’t have a strong preference for any one of the three, all I want you to do is not be lazy and expect me to backfill warrants from my personal knowledge of arguments for you. If you don’t say it, it doesn’t end up on my flow, and thus it doesn’t get evaluated. There aren’t really any arguments I won’t listen to, and I will give the best feedback I have the ability to give after each round.
For out of round thinking or pre tournament pref sheets here are a few of the major things I think are important about my judging philosophy and history as a debater
•I hate lazy debate; I spent a lot of time doing research and learning specific contextualized warrants for most of the arguments I read. It will benefit you and your speaks to be as specific as possible when it comes to your warrants.
•I did read the K a lot during my time as a debater but that doesn’t mean I don’t also deeply enjoy a good topical debate
•I did read arguments tethered to my identity occasionally; if you want to read these sorts of arguments I am sympathetic to them, but I believe you should be ready to answer the framework debate well.
•As far as framework and theory arguments go, I am open to listening to any theory argument in round with the exception of Spec args, I honestly feel like a POI is enough of a check back for a spec arg. I have yet to meet a spec arg that was justified much beyond a time suck. If you’re In front of me, I give these arguments little credence so you should respond accordingly.
•As far as the actual voting issue of theory, I by default assume they are all Apriori, as theory is a meta discussion about debate and therefore comes as a prior question to whatever K/CP/DA is being read. When it comes to evaluating the impacts of theory, please please please do not be lazy and just say that fairness and/or education is the voter without justification. These are nebulous terms that could mean a thousand things, if you want to make me really happy as a judge please read more specific voters with a solid justification for them. This way I have a more concrete idea of what you mean instead of me having to insert my own ideas about fairness or education into the debate space.
•As far as policy debates go, I default net bens, and will tend to prefer probable impacts over big impacts. That being said, I am a sucker for a good nuke war or resource wars scenario. My favorite policy debates were always econ debates because of the technical nuance.
•Go as fast as you want, just make sure if your opponent calls clear or slow you listen because if they read theory or a K because you didn’t slow down or speak more clearly I will most likely vote you down.
•I am not a point fairy, I tend to be in the lower end of average speaks given, that being said, do a great job, make me chuckle, or reference the mountain goats and I’ll give you and your partner 30s
I have been doing this for ~18 years. I debated trad and not and now I coach the same. It is fair to say that I am more familiar and comfortable with traditional arguments but I do like kritiks. I just do not know as much about your literature base as you probably want me to, especially for the more complicated ones. To be honest, I do not understand some of the arguments my students run and I do not know why they win but i am glad that other coaches vote for them. In the end, I don't care what you do (fiat the USFG to do something, tell me a story/narrative, framework, etc.) just have fun and be yourselves. My debate career is over so I really don't care what you read but I have one exception: Don't read RVIs.
Unless directed otherwise, I will adhere to the flow as closely as possible. I will prioritize weighing arguments as the debaters instruct me or I will tend to default to these preferences: an unwarranted systemic impact over an unwarranted nuclear war impact and will probably default to ordering impact calculus as probability, magnitude, and time frame. I am not familiar with cards/authors and I am a little hard of hearing so I can't keep up with full speed and need you to speak up.
email chain: mjs17 at stmarys-ca.edu
Speak well and make good choices.
I competed in
parli for 3 years. This is my first year judging. Speed is generally fine but
the faster you go the more arguments I’ll miss so spread at your own risk. I
prefer policy affs but feel free to do whatever you’re comfortable with. I will
vote on impacts unless you give me something else to vote on. Ks are fine but
if I’m not familiar with the literature (which is probably most of the time)
you need to explain it very clearly. If I don’t understand it, I won’t vote on
it. I believe the debate space ought to be safe and accessible for everyone so
be kind and be inclusive. I'm very generous with speaker points so expect high
speaks as long as you treat everyone with respect.
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 “genre” 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.
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. I’ve picked up teams reading structural indictments of debate about as many times as I’ve 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 you’re 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 early… don’t 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 it’s 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 arguments… don’t be excessive with them though [I’ll be vague about what that means, but be an adult]
RVI’s have never been good arguments, read them at your own risk.
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 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, I’m 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 it’s always been sketchy at best, without cards (and with?)]. Read the DA if you’re a politics team, but there are almost always better arguments out there.
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 that’s the case instead of “shadow” 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 arguments… 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. So… 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 I’m not going to weigh the affirmative impacts against the position. That’s not a framework debate though, that’s 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 shouldn’t lose early, often, and specifically. The same is true of any set/genre of negative positions.
I tend to not have super strong feelings in favor or in opposition to “performance” 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 “wins” the position.
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 don’t 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.
Brigitte Tripp Paradigm
General: I debated at Lewis and Clark from 2012-2015 and was MG/LO. I also did four years of policy debate in high school. I am new ish to judging (Nats '18, LC '18 and Washburn '18). What should be taken from my philosophy is that while I have preferences y'all should just do you. I would rather see the debate that you are best at/most excited about rather than an attempt at catering to me. Also, if it helps my style of judging is very techy and flow based.
I am most knowledgeable about international politics, the environment and issues concerning animal rights (anthropocentrism). I further, am quite familiar with Lacan and Baudrillard. Outside of these areas it would be wise to assume that I have not read your literature base.
Topicality: I LOVE T and am such a T hack. Weird, wonky T's are highly encouraged. I will always evaluate a T and feel very comfortable judging this debate. In order for me to vote on T it needs to have all of the proper components ie interp, violation, standards, voters and an evaluation mechanism. Violations need to be articulated saying that the aff violates is insufficient (explain how they violate). Also I think limits is the best standard and ground is the worst (but do you). I tend to default to competing interpretations unless given a mechanism to evaluate what "reasonable" is and a reason to prefer it as such. Additionally, I do not need proven in round abuse to vote on topicality though proving abuse will certainly strengthen your case. Also say the interp twice please. Oh and if you're the aff and plan was rez unless the words extra of effects topicality are in the LOC shell feel free to spend very little time on the topicality as long as you say point out both of these things. However, I will vote on a T even if plan is rez if the aff does not use this argument to get out of a topicality. I will not vote on rvis.
Theory: I'll listen to it, do you but I won't love listening to disclosure or no neg fiat. However, I will still vote on both of those things if that's what you're into saying. I will default to competing interpretations unless told otherwise.
Counterplans: Don't have a lot of strong opinions on CPs. Down to hear theory both ways but generally tend to think that condo is good and cheater cps are bad but again I will still evaluate why delay is good or condo is bad.
Advantages/Disads: Please say them I love a good policy debate.
The K: I am not well versed in K literature which means at some point you should explain the thesis of your K, preferably as if I was five. In terms of running the K links should be specific and there should be a clear framework or role of the ballot argument so I understand how you would like me to evaluate the K against the aff and the text of the alt should be said twice. When answering the K I prefer to hear link or impact turns but am willing to vote on theory that the neg shouldn't be allowed to read a K. I'm also down to hear the K aff just make it clear whether or not you are defending fiat and have a clear advocacy text.
As a final note I am currently undergoing various medical treatments for chronic migraine and a thorasic disc disruption. Point being, one of my new medications causes my hands to shake very slightly. While I have not found this to impede my ability to flow it is extremely difficult for me to get down texts word for word. I ask that debaters please provide me with written copies of alternative or counterplan texts as well as any theory interpretations.
David Worth Paradigm
D.O.F., Rice University
Parli Judging Philosophy
Note: If you read nothing else in this, read the last paragraph.
I’ll judge based on given criteria/framework. I can think in more than one way. This means that the mechanisms for deciding the round are up for debate as far as I’m concerned. My decision is based mostly on how the debaters argue I should decide the round but I will intervene if 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 someone is lying). In these cases, I try to stay out of the decision as much as I can but I don’t believe in the idea that any living person is really a blank slate or a sort of argument calculator.
I prefer debates that are related to the topic.
I will not vote for an argument that I don’t understand. If I can’t figure it out from what you’ve said in the round, I can’t vote on it.
I will admit that I am tired of debates that are mostly logic puzzles. I am tired of moving symbols around on paper. Alts and plan texts that are empty phrases don’t do it for me anymore. The novelty of postmodern critique that verges on--or actually takes the leap into--nihilism has worn off. I don’t think there’s much value anymore in affirming what we all know: That things can be deconstructed and that they contain contradictory concepts. It is time for us to move beyond this recognition into something else. Debate can be a game with meaning.
Warrants: I will not vote for assertions that don’t at least have some warrant behind them. You can’t say “algae blooms,” and assume I will fill in the internals and the subsequent impacts for you. You don’t 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. I’m not saying I won’t vote for that. I’m 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, procedural, or somehow otherwise developed. 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.
Defense can win, too. That doesn’t mean that a weaker offensive argument with risk can’t outweigh defense, it simply means that just saying, “oh that’s just defense,” won’t make the argument go away for me. Debate is not football. There’s no presumption in the NFL, so that analogy is wrong.
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. It’s pretty rare that I vote on one response but it’s equally rare that I will vote on the most general level of the ideas. In a bind, I will vote for what’s easier to believe and/or more intuitive.
Speed is fine as long as you are clear. There are days when I need you to slow down a tad. I have battled carpal/cubital tunnel off and on for a few years and sometimes my hand just does not work quite as well. I’ll tell you if you need to clear up and/or slow down, but not more than a couple of times. After that, it’s on you.
Please slow down for the alt texts, plans, advocacies, etc., and give me a copy too. If I don’t have it, I can’t vote for it.
Strong Viewpoints: I haven’t yet found "the" issue that I can’t try to see all sides of.
Points of Order: Call them—but judiciously. I’ll probably know whether the argument is new and not calling them does not change their status as new. Also, if you’re clearly winning bigtime don’t call a ridiculous number of them. Just let the other team get out of the round with some dignity. If you don’t, your speaker points will suffer. It’ll be obvious when I think you are calling too many.
If the round is obviously lopsided and you are obliterating the other team then be nice. I will lower your speaker points if you aren’t respectful or if you simply pile it on for the heck of it. If it’s egregious enough, you might even lose the debate.
You don’t need to repeat yourself just to fill time. If you’re finished, then sit down and get us all to lunch, the end of the day, or the next round early.
Theory: I’m not going to weigh in on the great theoretical controversies of the day. Those are up to you to demonstrate in the round. T can be more than one thing depending on the round. I’m not going to tell you what to do. Debate is always in flux. Actually, I’ve learned or at least been encouraged to think differently 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 wouldn’t have learned, so it’s in my interest as well as yours for me not to hand you a sushi menu with the items I’d like to see checked off. PICS, Framework, Competing Interp, in-round abuse, etc. are all interpretable in the debate. I will say that I probably most naturally think in terms of competing interpretations, but, again, I can think in more than one way.
My “Debate Background:” I did CEDA/NDT in college. I coached policy for years, and also coached parli from the days of metaphor all the way into the NPTE/NPDA modern era. I have also coached NFA-LD.
Finally, I ask that you consider that 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 respect for that. I am serious about this and it has come to occupy a significant portion of my thinking about debate these days. In fact, I think it’s time for the in-round bullying to stop. I see too many rounds where one team’s strategy is simply to intimidate the other team. I find it strange that an activity that talks so much about the violence of language often does so in such a needlessly aggressive and violent manner. In some rounds every interaction is barbed. Flex/CX is often just needlessly aggressive and sometimes even useless (when, for example, someone simply refuses to answer questions or just keeps purposely avoiding the question when it’s obvious that they understand the question, opting instead for aggression sometimes verging on ad hominem). I see too many other rounds where everyone is just awful to each other, including the judges afterward. You can be intense and competitive without this. We are now a smaller circuit. It’s strange that we would choose to spend so much time together yet be so horrible to each other.