Brendon Bankey Paradigm
Graduate Teaching Assistant at the University of Kansas--7th year judging NDTCEDA, 11th year judging NDCA/TOC
firstname.lastname@example.org - please add me to your email chain
I judge debates based on execution. My decisions rarely come down to just 2NR v 2AR. They are strongly influenced by how ideas develop in CX, the block, and the 1AR.
The best rebuttals will isolate a unique impact and explain why their opponent's impact is either less important or impossible to resolve. The most persuasive rebuttals, to me, are those that explain how I should evaluate the debate given the available information. This is especially true in debates about debate where neither side agrees on a normative method for evaluation.
I can't stress how irritated I am by students that make sweeping claims about argument styles that they don't usually engage in. Debate is hard and everyone puts in an incredible amount of work. Oftentimes, people don't get credit for their effort. That stinks. That does not mean, however, that other folks' contributions are less valuable than yours because they approach the game differently.
I think there is an important role for philosophical arguments in debate, with caveats. Ks should disprove solvency. I think creatively interpreting the resolution is interesting. Affirmative teams that decide the resolution doesn't matter in advance of the debate and only impact turn their opponent's positions bore me. I would rather affs be deliberately extra-topical than anti-topical. Link arguments should be consistent with framework arguments. The terms used in speeches and tags should reflect the language of the literature base they are meant to represent. Not all Ks of humanism are the same. Not all Ks are Ks of humanism.
I think there is an important role for policy arguments in debate, with caveats. Vague plan writing does not equal strategic plan writing. Impact evidence is often outdated and/or includes multiple alt-causes. I perceive a degree of self-righteousness from debaters that have extensive experience going for T-USFG but have little experience going for T in other situations. I perceive a higher degree of self-righteousness from debaters who preach the merits of research when going for T-USFG while very obviously reading evidence they copy and pasted from other school's open-source documents.
What you should expect of me:
1) I will evaluate the debate and cast a provisional decision about which team did the better debating based on the content of the speeches and the cross-examinations.
2) I will flow your debate in an excel template and save a copy after the debate for scouting purposes.
How I think about debate:
I. The aff's burden is to prove that the 1AC is A) an example of the res and B) a positive departure from the squo. The neg should disprove the 1AC and can win by establishing that the aff is wrong about either A or B. The neg can also win by offering a counter-proposal that competes with and is net beneficial to the 1AC.
II. In order to accomplish A, the aff should be able to:
1) provide an interpretation of the resolution
2) explain how the 1AC meets their interpretation of the resolution
3) demonstrate that their vision of the resolution is superior to the neg’s
III. In the event that the aff argues they do not have to abide by the terms of the resolution, the aff should be able to:
1) provide sound reasoning for why the agreed upon point of stasis fails to address the agreed upon controversy area
2) explain the roles of the aff and the neg in their vision of debate
3) demonstrate that their vision of debate is superior to the neg’s
IV. The aff cannot win by simply flipping the burden of proof and indicting the neg’s interpretation of the resolution.* The aff must at all times defend a contestable proposition. If III (see above) occurs, the neg's burden is not to disprove the solvency and harms of the 1AC (B). Rather, all the neg should have to disprove is that abandoning A is necessary to solve/talk about B. If the neg can demonstrate that the original stasis point can accommodate the harms area then the aff has not proven that abandoning the res must occur.
*Exceptions to IV: language Ks, conditionality bad
Things I enjoy:
· When debaters express a nuanced knowledge of the resolution/controversy area
· Good jokes
· Bold choices
· Exposing specious arguments in C-X
· Solvency debates
· Links to the plan
· Supporting claims with high-quality research
· Final rebuttals that begin with a brief explanation of the key issues in the debate and why they have won given the arguments presented in earlier speeches
· When debaters prioritize answering the question, “What should debate look like?”
· Creative permutations—a perm says that there is a possible world in which both the 1AC and the counter-proposal can occur simultaneously, or that the counter-proposal is an example of how the aff’s proposition could be implemented—the aff should describe the permutation in both rebuttals and explicitly argue what elements of the neg’s strategy it mitigates/solves. Asserting the hypothetical validity of a perm and being intentionally vague until the 2AR does not an aff ballot make.
Things I don’t enjoy:
· When debaters compensate for dropping an argument by asserting that it is new
· When embedded clash becomes an excuse for not flowing
· When debaters make straw person characterizations of argument styles they do not personally engage in
· Trained incapacity
· “Death good”/ “death not real”
· Basic strats
· Recycled strats
· Recycled blocks
· K 1NC shells that I can find in my inbox from previous seasons
· “Procedural fairness”
· Teams that don’t take advantage if/when their opponent impact turns fairness
· Affs that don’t defend a substantial departure from the squo
· Affs that don’t specify the terms of the 1AC/backtrack on the terms of the 1AC for the purpose of permuting the neg’s counter-proposal
· Bad internal links
· C-X belligerence
· Hyperbolic impacts
· Counter-perms (honestly, it’s been 10 years and I still don’t get it)
· Asserting “perm do the counter-proposal” when it’s shamelessly severance
· When great CX moments don’t make it into the speeches
· Failing to capitalize on 2AC/block choices and settling for coin flip decisions
· “Point me to a line in the card where it says…” OR “I just ctrl F’ed that word in the document and it isn’t there”