Tommy Archibald Paradigm

Last changed 24 January 2016 8:51 PM EST

 Tommy Archibald

Emory University ‘19



This paradigm is for the 2016 Barkley Forum. I’ll update it for future tournaments.


I was an LD debater for 4 years at Vestavia Hills High School in Birmingham, AL and am currently a freshman at Emory. I attended NSD and debated on the national circuit a fair amount, so I feel like I am generally familiar with most styles of argumentation. With that being said, the BF will be the first tournament I’ve judged at in over a year, so I might be a tad rusty.


I feel like my job as a judge is to be as objective as possible and evaluate the round solely on the merits of the arguments presented. I will vote on anything as long as it is clearly explained, well defended, and weighed against other arguments. In an effort to maintain consistency, this does mean that I will vote on less than stellar args (i.e. NIBS, frivolous theory, etc.) that get dropped or insufficiently covered, but I won’t be happy about it and I probably won’t give you great speaks. As much as I dislike dumb arguments, I dislike arbitrary judge intervention more.


Speed is cool with me. Just be clear and slow down for tags and authors. I’ll yell clear if I can’t understand. Just keep in mind that if I can’t understand you, I can’t vote for you. I might call for cards after rounds if need be. Progressive strategies such as theory, T, LARPing etc. are all good with me.


I’ve never been too high on K debate. It’s not that I won’t vote on them, but I am not particularly familiar with most of the literature. I never got around to reading much of it, and I never really ran K’s as a debater. If you’re prepared to explain it really well, have at it, but I don’t consider myself to be overly qualified to properly adjudicate a dense K debate. I’ll be up front and honest and say that if you’re a dedicated K debater, I wouldn’t pref me too high. I don’t feel like I can give you due diligence. It’s not you, it’s me.


Things I default to:


-Competing Interps

-No RVIs

-Drop the Arg

-The resolution is a statement that is to be proven true by the affirmative

-Offensive counter-interps or meta-theory require justification as a practice in order to count as a higher layer

-Theory comes before K’s and T

-Fairness and Education are theoretically legitimate reasons to exclude certain practices


If I left something out, feel free to ask about any other default positions that I have before the round. These defaults aren’t necessarily preferences; rather, they are my default assumption if debaters fail to directly address the issue. I do, however, strongly feel that meta-theory is NOT intrinsically a higher layer. If you run it, you’d better justify it as a higher layer. Otherwise, I will treat it like a counter-interp without an RVI.


Speaks: As previously stated, I will dock speaks for cheap, tricky args or general douchebaggery. I will, however, reward you with higher speaks if you:


-Make interesting and nuanced framework arguments

-Jedi mind trick your opponent in CX

-Make a funny joke/pun

-Crystallize well

-Do exceptional weighing


My typical speaks scale looks something like this. I'll give decimals if I feel you're halfway between:


<25—you said something overtly offensive/rude

26—Not good--Probably the result of really bad spreading



29—You should break

30—You are a personal hero of mine


If you have any more questions, feel free to email me at, or ask me before the round.

Full Judging Record

Tournament Lv Date Ev Rd Aff Neg Vote Result
Barkley Forum for High Schools HS 2016-01-29 LD R5 American Heritage Plantation CB Montgomery Acad HH Aff
Barkley Forum for High Schools HS 2016-01-29 LD R2 Providence SZ Eastside Catholic DC Neg
Barkley Forum for High Schools HS 2016-01-29 LD R2 Lovett EG New Trier NKa Neg
Barkley Forum for High Schools HS 2016-01-29 LD R1 Dallastown OM Providence BS Aff