David Basler Paradigm

Last changed 8/9 10:55A CDT

POLICY PARADIGM FOR DAVID BASLER (Updated for 2018-19 season)
POLICY DEBATE COACH AT WEST DES MOINES VALLEY (IOWA), ALSO JUDGING ON THE COLLEGE CIRCUIT FOR GONZAGA UNIVERSITY

A QUICK SUMMARY (if you are accessing this on your iPhone as the round is starting):
Speed is OK.
T, theory, Ks and K Affs OK
No prep time for flashing.
Be kind to your opponents, your partner and the judge.
I will not be on Facebook during c/x.

"Clearly, some philosophies aren't for all people. And that's my new philosophy!" - Sally Brown, You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown, 2012

I BE ME. I have been a high school policy debate coach for the last eight years, mostly at West Des Moines Valley (2010-2015, 2016-2019) and also at Dowling Catholic (2015-16). I typically judge between 70-100 policy rounds a year. Last year was an unusual year for me in that I did not judge as many rounds and did not judge at all at Glenbrooks, Harvard, Blake, etc. Valley typically has a couple varsity teams who are looking for TOC bids and I have 100+ rounds of experience judging at bid tournaments. I stay familiar with the arguments run by top regional and national teams and with the content being put out by the top policy debate camps. Some good teams even pref me.

I was a successful CEDA debater in college, but I did have a wicked mullet so that could explain the success. As to the 2018-19 college topic and the question of judicial deference and the judicial branch generally, it is probably useful to know that I have been a practicing attorney for many years.

U BE U. What kind of arguments do I like? I enjoyed watching Michael Jordan the basketball player more than Michael Jordan the baseball player. I want to see you do what you do best. My preferences in regard to certain arguments should not matter. I try to come into each round with no position on what the voting issues should be, although I do still believe in negative presumption. I also believe you can still rock in America. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nB3kQZJ2aLw

F/WORK. When it comes to framework, I will listen to arguments in support of any position, but if neither team wins the framework debate I will default to the question on the ballot- "I believe the better debating was done by ..." I will reject framework in favor of a K aff when the affirmative team gives me the more persuasive reasons why having a plan text, defending the state, etc. is bad. I will vote against a K aff on framework when the negative team gives me the more persuasive reasons why not having a plan text, not defending the state, etc. is bad. I will vote for teams that do not have a plan text and I will also vote against them.

"Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is by far the best ending for one." - Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1890

MAKE ME LAUGH, GET GOOD SPEAKS. I really enjoy creative arguments. I appreciate humor. I respect debaters who can speak both quickly and clearly. I used to love doing c/x and I still love hearing a good c/x. I like debaters with cool nicknames like "Q" or "DanBan." I also like the words "kitchenette" and "flume."

POLICY TEAMS. Heg good. Heg bad. The government reads your email, so they know how you really feel, but I am cool with whatever. Because I am kind of a political junkie I love a good politics disad but that doesn't mean your link chain can stink.

WHAT ABOUT THE K? Bring it. Some of my absolute favorite debates I have judged have been K debates. However, reading dense philosophical texts at 350 words per minute is not helpful to comprehension. You know what else is almost always not helpful to comprehension? Super long taglines that are impossible to flow and lengthy overviews. Do it on the line-by-line. I would say I have heard just about everything but I am most familiar with economic theory, identity arguments, and Ks of consumption, technology and consumerism. I am less familiar with psychoanalysis but will always vote for stuff I think is persuasive (which means you just need to make me understand it). I am not a teacher (I am a lawyer) so I am only "in the literature" as a debate coach whose teams often gravitate toward and read Ks and Affs with no plan text.

As I try not to intervene as a judge, I am not going to give you the benefit of everything I know about a particular philosopher, legal argument, theory argument or a particular policy option. You always need to explain your arguments.

PERFORMANCE/"PROJECT"/NON-TRADITIONAL TEAMS. Sure. It is your community. I like the idea that you get to write the rules. Dance, sing or drum like there is nobody watching. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ItZyaOlrb7E

"I wanna go fast."- Ricky Bobby, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, 2006

SPEED. If you are clear, I will be able to flow you. However, though speaking quickly has become a community norm in policy debate, debate is still fundamentally about the quality of your oral advocacy and communication. I think it is my job as a judge to say who was winning when time expired. This means I will rarely call for cards unless there is a disagreement over what the card says or I don't know how else to decide the debate. As Big from Gonzaga says in his paradigm- "Making a decision after re-reading read evidence in a debate distances judges from the performance of the speech and increases the likelihood of interpretive hubris. I don’t think either of those things are desirable characteristics of a decision."

THEORY. I am often fine with multiple conditional arguments, 50 state fiat, etc. I am also frequently not fine with it. Win offense to win your theory argument. Recall that it is harder for me to flow 8 points of theory than two pieces of tagged evidence and please slow down.Strategic use of theory is smart because it almost always takes more time to answer the argument than it does to make it, however, this also means I am going to cut the other team some slack in making their answers and evidence of actual in-round abuse is the easiest way to get me to vote on theory.

PREP. I do not require a team to use prep time to flash their speech to the other team. Don't steal prep time while the other team is flashing you their arguments. Also, if you still need to re-order all of your papers when you get up to the podium, you are still prepping.

"Gretchen, I'm sorry I laughed at you that time you got diarrhea at Barnes & Nobles." - Karen Smith, Mean Girls, 2004

MEAN PEOPLE SUCK. Even though I believe the sarcastic slow-clap to be an underutilized method of cross-ex, I expect you to be respectful and courteous to your opponents, your partner and to the judge. I can assure you that the best advocates out in the real world (whether they are trial attorneys, lobbyists, politicians, activists, writers, Comedy Central talk show hosts, etc.) understand the difference between vigorous disagreement in a debate forum and mutual respect and even admiration outside of that forum. I believe in a debate round we should all strive to disagree agreeably, and as soon as the round is over the disagreement should end. This is especially true given the divisive nature of modern day political rhetoric and/or many people's strong feelings about Taylor Swift.

It should also go without saying (but if it wasn't an issue I wouldn't be saying it) but you should not be touching or throwing things at anyone in the debate room. Always be mindful of the diversity of life experiences that debaters bring with them into the debate space and this includes, but is not limited to, an increased sensitivity to violence or violent imagery.

TECH OR TRUTH? If something is totally counter-intuitive and empirically false, telling me that (you have to speak the words) is probably enough to defeat an argument. However, I also like it when people take counter-intuitive positions and explain why they are true, even if our first instinct is to reject them. But yeah...try not to drop shtuff.

WELL DONE, YOUNG PADAWAN. I have nothing but respect for people who choose to use their free time developing their critical thinking skills and engaging in an academic exercise like debate. It will serve you well in life, whatever you choose to do, and this is why I place such a high value on the activity. I promise you I will do my best to be fair, constructive, encouraging and engaged. Hopefully that is all you would want from a judge. That and, during the winter, copious amounts of facial hair.

Full Judging Record

Tournament Date Ev Rd Aff Neg Vote Result
Valley IntraSquad 4/12/2019 Pol R2 Lana McKinney & Taylor Coe Ian Critelli & Jason Godina Aff
Valley IntraSquad 4/12/2019 Pol R1 Alisha Keshwani & Alina Keshwani Lukas Eastin & Gabe Van Arkel Aff
Iowa Forensic League State Tournament 3/7/2019 CX Quarte Theodore Roosevelt CA Washington SK Aff Aff on a 2-1
Iowa Forensic League State Tournament 3/7/2019 CX r4 Dowling Catholic SS West CB Aff
Iowa Forensic League State Tournament 3/7/2019 CX r3 Washington SK Dowling Catholic TH Neg
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 CX 16 Glenbrook South GS Evanston Twp LC Neg Aff on a 2-1
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 CX 32 Marquette Univ TM Jones CP DC Neg Aff on a 2-1
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 CX R5 South SC Edina BS Neg
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 CX R4 Glenbrook South BY Evanston Twp LC Neg
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 CX R3 Glenbrook South BV Millard West FW Aff
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 JVCX R2 Glenbrook South MJ Niles West PW Aff
The Paradigm at Dowling Catholic 12/7/2018 CX R1 Glenbrook South KS Rosemount NS Aff
East High School Fall Classic 11/2/2018 VCX R4 Dowling Catholic PW West NZ Aff
East High School Fall Classic 11/2/2018 NCX R3 Washington GW West LL Aff
East High School Fall Classic 11/2/2018 VCX R2 West SD Dowling Catholic SS Neg
DM North Polar Bear Open 10/12/2018 PF Q Lincoln CF Ames DC Aff Aff on a 3-0
DM North Polar Bear Open 10/12/2018 PF R5 Okoboji GB Southeast Polk RT Neg
DM North Polar Bear Open 10/12/2018 PF R3 Theodore Roosevelt HS Southeast Polk LW Aff
DM North Polar Bear Open 10/12/2018 PF R2 Waukee SJ Johnston AH Aff
DM North Polar Bear Open 10/12/2018 PF R1 Dowling Catholic NS Lincoln GoJu Neg
Mid America Cup 9/21/2018 Pol Octos Blue Valley Southwest PH Marquette Univ MT Aff Neg on a 2-1
Mid America Cup 9/21/2018 Pol R6 Wichita East QS Edina DA Neg
Mid America Cup 9/21/2018 Pol R2 Marquette Univ MT Edina LA Aff
Mid America Cup 9/21/2018 Pol R1 South SC Blue Valley Southwest PH Aff
Sun Devil Invitational 9/15/2018 V R4 Arizona State FE Cal State Fullerton SW Aff
Iowa Forensic League State Tournament 3/1/2018 CX r5 Dowling HS IC City OH Aff
Iowa Forensic League State Tournament 3/1/2018 CX r4 Dowling TM IC West JW Aff
Iowa Forensic League State Tournament 3/1/2018 CX r1 IC West ND CR Washington MH Aff
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/26/2018 NCX R3 West Des Moines Valley CF Neg
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/26/2018 NCX R2 Cedar Rapids Washington GS Iowa City West BP Aff
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/26/2018 VCX R1 Iowa City West SD Iowa City HW Neg
Valley Mid America Cup 9/23/2017 Pol R6 Evanston Twp MJ Theodore Roosevelt AD Aff
Valley Mid America Cup 9/23/2017 Pol R5 Chicago Lab SC Edina YY Aff
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/27/2017 VCX R5 Iowa City West CZ Cedar Rapids Washington ST Neg
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/27/2017 VCX R4 Iowa City West MD Iowa City West MS Aff
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/27/2017 VCX R3 Cedar Rapids Washington MM Iowa City West MD Neg
City Classic at Iowa City High 1/27/2017 VCX R2 West Des Moines Valley GC Iowa City West HE Aff
Ohio Valley Invitational 12/3/2016 NCX Octos Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart JG Northview RJ Aff Aff on a 3-0
Ohio Valley Invitational 12/3/2016 NCX R6 Cross Keys PK Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart JG Aff
Ohio Valley Invitational 12/3/2016 NCX R4 Barstow EL Montgomery Bell SH Aff
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R7 Dowling Catholic CS Barstow LE Neg Neg on a 2-0
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R6 Niles West RW Cedar Rapids Washington ST Neg Neg on a 2-0
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R5 Blue Valley Southwest SH Marquette Univ MM Neg Neg on a 2-0
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R4 Blue Valley Southwest DR Cypress Bay SS Aff Aff on a 2-0
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R3 Okemos SZ Harker GL Aff Aff on a 2-0
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R2 Notre Dame HS - Sherman Oaks DM Niles North DS Aff Aff on a 2-0
2016 Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament 11/19/2016 NCXRR R1 Homewood-Flossmoor KB Wayzata LC Neg Neg on a 2-0
New Trier Season Opener 10/8/2016 Open Rd 6 Wylie E. Groves BM Niles West RR Neg
New Trier Season Opener 10/8/2016 Open Rd 5 Walter Payton CP MW Lexington ZR Neg
Barkley Forum for High Schools 1/23/2015 CX R6 Paideia GU Caddo Magnet CF Aff
Barkley Forum for High Schools 1/23/2015 CX R5 Newark Science FS Brooklyn Independent Debate RW Aff
Barkley Forum for High Schools 1/23/2015 CX R2 Cypress Bay VB Notre Dame SF Neg
Barkley Forum for High Schools 1/23/2015 CX R1 Baltimore City College BY La Salle College CP Aff
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R7 Northside CP BS Glenbrook South SB Neg
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R6 HomewoodFlossmoor DM Highland Park Senior SM Neg
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R5 Eagan JH Bloomington ZS Neg
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R4 Edgemont CG Glenbrook North CL Aff
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R3 East Kentwood RO Edina SR Neg
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R2 Eagan SR Highland Park Senior BD Neg
John Edie Holiday Tournament at Blake 12/19/2014 CX R1 Solorio BT Notre Dame RK Neg
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 NCX R7 Niles North CU West Bloomfield BP Neg
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 VCX R6 New Trier Ha Lane Tech College Prep H.S. HM Aff
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 VCX R5 Mount Vernon Presbyterian WF Thomas Kelly HT Aff
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 VCX R4 Homewood-Flossmoor MH Von Steuben MP Aff
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 VCX R3 SPASH MP Chicago Lab Schools AF Aff
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 VCX R2 Stuyvesant YG Blake SW Aff
University of Michigan HS Tournament 11/5/2014 VCX R1 Wayzata GA Homewood-Flossmoor HP Aff
Stanford Invitational 2/8/2014 VCX Double College Prep HJ Lowell VC Aff Aff on a 3-0
Stanford Invitational 2/8/2014 VCX R6 Lynbrook CG Lowell BZ Neg
Stanford Invitational 2/8/2014 VCX R5 Capitol Debate DD Lakeland District Debate KA Aff
Stanford Invitational 2/8/2014 VCX R4 Clear Lake VK Peak to Peak HJ Neg
Stanford Invitational 2/8/2014 VCX R3 Peninsula WT St. Vincent De Paul YM Neg
Stanford Invitational 2/8/2014 VCX R2 Lynbrook KM Pine Crest Preparatory LM Neg