Joe Patrice Paradigm
Paperless Policy: I'm at email@example.com. Or I can do the situational dropbox thing. Whatever. Regale me with your evidence. I don't read it during round, I just want it all for post-round evaluation and caselist obligations. I still flow based on what you SAY so don't cut corners on clarity just because I have your speech docs in my inbox.
Everything Else: I listen to everything, but I characterize myself as a critic of argument. Basically that’s a kind of pretentious way of saying that I listen to everything, but realistically note that in evaluation, all else equal, certain things are more compelling than others.
NOTE: Do not necessarily interpret any of my preferences as bans on any kind of arguments, or even guides to how to select down. It's a threshold of believability issue.
Policy Debates: Compare your impacts, weigh them, and tell me a story of the world of voting Aff vs. voting Neg.
I prefer fewer positions with longer evidence, clearer scenarios, and more analysis of impact probability rather than harping on the massive size of the impacts. If I hear that an increase in spending will collapse the world economy and trigger a nuclear war, you may as well tell me aliens are invading. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll vote on it, but I’ll die a little inside and there’s frighteningly little of my soul left to kill – I’m a lawyer.
Counterplans are cool. As someone who likes substantive argument, I think agent CPs are kind of lame, but hey, it’s the world we live in. I've been more demanding of CP/Perm theory arguments. I think these arguments are akin to T, yet unlike T people don't feel compelled to explain the abuse story. I do not think "the Perm is severance" is a link...I need to know why it severs and preferably a reason why that is uniquely disadvantageous. That said, if that's in the debate I'm more than willing to vote on these args because people all too often don't answer them well enough, probably because they don't know how to flow anymore. But who am I to judge! Oh right... I'm the judge. Kinda my job.
In other words, if you're going the policy route, you’ll make me so happy teeing off with specific arguments tied to the real policy debate of the subject.
And if you’re reading this harsh criticism of policy debate with a smug look on your face, slow your roll there K debater...
Kritik Debates: Kritiks challenge the advocacy of the other team in salient ways that could be lost in a pure utilitarian analysis. Issues of exclusion and oppression ingrained in the heart of a policy proposal or the representations of the other team can be called out with kritiks ranging from simple “-ism” args to a postmodern cavalcade.
It is NOT an excuse to say random pomo garbage that sounds cool but doesn’t bear upon what’s happening in the round. Esoteric ramblings from some dead German can – and often do – have as little to do with the debate round as the hypothetical global nuclear wars that have killed us a million times over in this activity. Look, I actually KNOW what most of that garbage means, but that's not a reason to not make sense. Make the K relevant to the specific policy/issue discussion we’re supposed to be having and I’ll be very happy.
Again, I vote on this stuff, but see above about killing me inside.
When it comes to K/Performance Affs, I’m pretty open to however you justify the Aff (metaphorically, as activism, as some kind of parable), so long as deep down you’re advocating that all things equal, “a climate policy would be good/the USFG sucks because it doesn't have one.” Take whatever tack to get there you want, but basically be the direction of the topic, folks. With all these caveats, if you outright refuse to "affirm" anything in the "topic," that's all well and good but you'd better be a really good T debater. I'll vote for a compelling justification. Frankly, I'd rather hear "we can't be Aff because the resolution is broken and we'll win the T/Framework debate" than some squirrely "we're not topical, but kind of topical, but really not" thing.
An honest pet peeve (that I can be talked out of, round-by-round) is that I don't think opacity applies performatively in-round. I am open to the value of the argument academically, but absent a good reason, let's have open and forthcoming CXs (not to mention if we were really performatively concerned about opactiy, we wouldn't be at a debate tournament). This also applies to the more ludicrous K stuff -- Dadaism is an argument, not a reason to answer every question with "Fishbulbs!"
Every time you steal prep time will also kill me a little more inside. But you’re going to do it anyway.