Sandra W Silvers Invitational at Calhoun
2020 — NSDA Campus, GA/US
Policy Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
Marist High School: 2013-2017
Michigan State: 2017-Present
Put me on the email chain: duvadair at gmail dot com
TLDR: Make arguments you are most comfortable with, I'll try to judge them the best I can. I prefer that you read a plan. I don't know much about this years topic so if there are any acronyms maybe just say the full thing the first time.
Case: Impact turns are fun. A good case debate is always a plus, it shows you put in the time to research the aff and I will reward that.
Disads: Topic DAs and politics are fine with me.
Counterplans: Can be great if deployed well. Solvency advocates should probably be there but not necessary in all instances. 2-3 condo is ok, i can be persuaded otherwise and anything more will be an uphill battle. Counterplans that compete off certainty or immediacy are kinda sketch, so cover yourself on theory if that's the route you want to take. Make an effort to explain perms and shielding arguments, this can start in the 1ar but it should be more than "extend perm do both".
Kritiks: Im familiar with security/neolib based kritiks, anything beyond that don't expect me to understand the jargon. If you explain it clearly, have a link and impact, show how the alt solves, I'll be willing to vote on it. I think that the aff gets to weigh the aff and the role of the ballot debate should happen early. K tricks, if you are neg make them, and if you are aff make sure you answer them.
K affs: If you have a plan go for it. If there is not a plan, its going to be an uphill battle. I wouldn't say I'll never vote for a planless aff but its going to be hard to convince me. For the neg, impact out your fairness and limits impact, I think fairness is an impact you just need to explain why you think it is.
Topicality: I usually find myself comparing offense and defense of interps, but I can be persuaded by reasonability if you have a strong we meet push. Do impact calc why your interp is better for the topic, limits, education ect. Also have defense why your interp solves some of their offense or is not as bad as they say.
Again these are all suggestion about how I view debate. I understand other views and am willing to vote in any way as long as it is explained and debate well. Debate is a strategic game, show me you have thought about it and researched and you will be rewarded.
I somewhat follow along with the speech docs and if I catch you clipping I will vote against you. Claims of clipping must be substantiated with evidence. Have Fun.
Debater at MBA
3 most important things:
1. Theory -- I will be fine if you want to go for theory but please slow down on it especially if you don't send analytics in the speech doc
2. K -- you can read Ks in front of me but do not use excessive jargon or just assume that I understand the underlying theory. The framework debate is often ignored or not fleshed out, which means I generally have to give the aff their plan and the k their links.
3. K affs -- I am not going to be your best judge. I think fairness is an impact, and I generally think that plan texts are pretty necessary.
please add me to the email chain or ask questions: email@example.com
Updated October 2020
Note for Online Debate: Please check your internet connection, your audio clarity, and your volume levels before the debate starts. This can be as simple as doing a 2 minute speed drill for your partner in a separate chat. I don't want technology to become your biggest opponent in a debate. I will usually use a thumbs up to let you know I'm ready before speeches, so watch for that or let me know if you need a verbal response.
Yes I know my philosophy is unbearably long. I keep adding things without removing others, the same reason I was always top heavy when I debated. But I tried to keep it organized so hopefully you can find what you need, ask me questions if not.
For the few college tournaments I judge, understand that my philosophy is geared towards being of use to high school students since that is the vast, vast majority of my judging/coaching. Just use that as a filter when reading.
Seriously, I don't care what you read as long as you do it well. I really don't care if you argue that all K debaters should be banned from debate or argue that anyone who has ever read a plan is innately racist and should be kicked out of the community. If you win it, I'm happy to vote for it.
***Two Minutes Before A Debate Version***
I debated in high school for a school you've never heard of called Lone Peak, and in college for UNLV. I coached Foothill High School and currently coach Green Valley High School, as well as helping out as a hired gun at various institutions. I have debated at the NDT, was nationally competitive in high school, and coached a fair share of teams to the TOC if those things matter for your pref sheet (they shouldn't). I genuinely don't have a big bias for either side of the ideological spectrum. I seem to judge a fairly even mix of K vs K, Clash of Civs, and policy debates. I can keep up with any speed as long as its clear, I will inform you if you are not, although don't tread that line because I may miss arguments before I speak up. If you remain unclear I just won't flow it.
Sometimes I look or act cranky. I love debate and I love judging, so don't take it too seriously.
My biases/presumptions (but can of course be persuaded otherwise):
- Tech over Truth, but Logic over Cards
- Quality and Quantity are both useful. Quality increasingly so as the debate progresses.
- Condo is generally good
- Generic responses to the K are worse than generic K's
- Politics and States are generally theoretically legitimate (and strategic)
- Smart, logical counterplans don't necessarily need solvency advocates, especially not in the 1NC
- 2NC's don't read new off case positions often enough
- I believe in aff flexibility (read: more inclusive interpretations of what's topical) more than almost anyone I know. That is demonstrated in almost every aff I've read or coached. *Edit for CJR: This seems to be less true this year, as I find myself thinking about 50% of aff's I hear are untopical for one reason or another.*
- I'll vote for "rocks are people" if you win it (warrant still needed). Terrible arguments are easily torn apart, but that's the other team's duty, not mine.
A Few Notes You Should Know:
Speaker Points: Firstly, I compare my speaker points to the mean after almost every tournament, so I try to stay in line with the community norm. I have had a dilemma with speaker points, and have recently changed my view. I think most judges view speaker points as a combination of style and substance, with one being more valuable than the other depending on the judge. I have found this frustrating as both a debater and coach trying to figure what caused a judge to give out the speaks they did. So I've decided to give out speaker points based solely on style rather than substance. I feel whichever team wins the substance of the debate will get my ballot so you are already rewarded, so I am going to give out speaker points based on the Ethos, Pathos, and Logos of a debater. Logos implies you are still extending good, smart arguments, but it just means that I won't tank speaks based off of technical drops (like floating pics, or a perm, etc) as some judges do, and I won't reward a team's speaker points for going for those arguments if I feel they are worse "speakers", the ballot is reward enough. Functionally all it means is that I probably give more low-point wins than some judges (about one a tournament), but at least you know why when looking at cume sheets after tournaments.
Debate is a rhetorical activity. This means if you want me to flow an argument, it must be intelligible, and warranted. I will not vote on an argument I do not have on my flow in a previous speech. I am a decent flow so don't be too scared but it means that if you are planning on going for your floating pic, a specific standard/trick on theory, a permutation that wasn't answered right in the block, etc. then you should make sure I have that argument written down and that you have explained it previously with sufficient nuance. I might feel bad that I didn't realize you were making a floating pic in the block, but only briefly, and you'll feel worse because ultimately it is my responsibility to judge based off of what is on my flow, so make those things clear. Being shady RARELY pays off in debate.
(*Update: This is no longer true in online debate tournaments, I look through docs because of potential clairty/tech issues*: I don't look at speech docs during debates except in rare instances. I read much less evidence after debates than most judges, often none at all. If you want me to read evidence, please say so, but also please tell me what I'm looking for. I prefer not to read evidence, so when I do after a round it means one of three things: 1. The debate is exceedingly close and has one or two issues upon which I am trying to determine the truth (rare). 2. You asked me to read the evidence because "its on fire" (somewhat common and potentially a fire hazard). 3. The debate was bad enough that I am trying to figure out what just happened.)
Prep time: I generally let teams handle their own prep, I do prefer if you don't stop prep until the email is sent. Doing so will make me much happier. If you are very blatantly stealing prep, I might call you out on it, or it might affect speaker points a little.
Neg: I am very much in favor of depth over breadth. Generally that doesn't affect how I feel about large 1NC's but it means I find myself thinking "I wish they had consolidated more in the block" quite often, and almost never the opposite. If you don't consolidate much, you might be upset with the leeway I give to 1AR/2AR explanations. Being shady RARELY pays off in debate. Pick your best arguments and go to battle.
DA's: I love in-depth disad debates. Teams that beat up on other teams with large topic disads usually have one of two things: A. A large number of pre-written blocks B. A better understanding of the topic than their opponents. If you have both, or the latter, I'll quite enjoy the debate. If you only have the former, then you can still get the ballot but not as much respect (or speaker points). Small disads very specific to the aff are awesome. Small disads that are small in order to be unpredictable are not. I am of the "1% risk" discipline assuming that means the disad is closely debated. I am not of that discipline if your disad is just silly and you are trying to win it is 1% true, know the difference.
CP's: I have a soft spot for tricky counterplans. That doesn't mean I think process/cheating counterplans are legitimate, that just means I'll leave my bias at the door more than most judges if you get into a theory debate. That said, theory is won or lost through explanation, not through having the largest blocks. Generally I think counterplans should be functionally and textually competitive, that doesn't mean you can't win of yours isn't, it just means if it is then you probably have some theoretical high ground. I also think if you have a specific solvency advocate for the counterplan (meaning a piece of evidence that advocates doing the counterplan, not just evidence that says the counterplan "is a thing" [I'm looking at you, Consult CP people]) you should utilize that both as a solvency argument and as a theoretical justification for the counterplan. I am neutral on the judge kick question. If you want me to judge kick, say so in the 2NR/2NC, and if you don't then say so in the 1AR/2AR, that's an argument to be had. However, if no one makes an argument either way, my default is if the 2NR is DA, CP, Case, then I think there is an implicit assumption in that strategy that the squo is an option. If the 2NR is only CP & DA, I think the implicit assumption is aff vs. CP. Advantage counterplans are vastly underutilized. Logical counterplans probably don't need solvency advocates. Many Trump impacts (such as "Trump lashes out at China") can be counterplaned out of with "executive restraint", yet not enough people seem to do that.
T: I think the way reasonability is construed is sad and a disservice to the argument. I perceive competing interpretations as a question of whose interpretation sets the best standard for all future debate, and reasonability as a question of whether the aff harmed the negative's fairness/education in this specific round. Under that interpretation (Caveat: This assumes you are explaining reasonability in that fashion, usually people do not). I tend to lean towards reasonability since I think T should be a check against aff's that try to skirt around the topic, rather than as a catch-all. T is to help guarantee the neg has predictable ground. I've voted neg a few times when the aff has won their interp is technically accurate but the neg has won their interp is better for fairness/limits/ground, but that's mostly because I think that technical accuracy/framer's intent is an internal link, rather than an impact, do the additional work.
Theory: This is a discussion of what debate should look like, which is one of the most simple questions to ask ourselves, yet people get very mixed up and confused on theory since we are trained to be robots. I LOVE theory debates where the debaters understand debate well enough to just make arguments and use clash, and HATE debates where the debaters read blocks as fast as possible and assume people can flow that in any meaningful fashion (very few can, I certainly can't. Remember, I don't have the speech doc open). I generally lean negative on theory questions like condo (to a certain extent) and CP theory args, but I think cp's should be textually, and more importantly, functionally competitive, see above.
Framework/T against Non-Traditional Aff's: I have read and gone for both the Procedural Fairness/T version of this argument and the State Action Good/Framework version of this argument many times. I am more than willing to vote for either, and I also am fine with teams that read both and then choose one for the 2NR. However, I personally am of the belief that fairness is not an impact in and of itself but is an internal link to other impacts. If you go for Fairness as your sole impact you may win, but adequate aff answers to it will be more persuasive in front of me. Fairness as the only impact assumes an individual debate is ultimately meaningless, which while winnable, is the equivalent of having a 2NR against a policy aff that is solely case defense, and again I'm by default #1%RiskClub. "Deliberation/dialogue/nuanced discussion/role switching is key to ____________" sorts of arguments are usually better in front of me. As far as defending US action, go for it. My personal belief is that the US government is redeemable and reformable but I am also more than open to voting on the idea that it is not, and these arguments are usually going straight into the teeth of the aff's offense so use with caution. TVA's are almost essential for a succesful 2NR unless the aff is clearly anti-topical and you go for a nuanced switch side argument. TVA's are also most persuasive when explained as a plan text and what a 1AC looks like, not just a nebulous few word explanation like "government reform" or "T-Visas to solve patriarchy". I like the idea of an interp with multiple net benefits and often prefer a 1NC split onto 3-4 sheets in order to separate specific T/FW arguments. If you do this, each should have a clear link (which is your interp), an internal link and impact. Lastly, I think neg teams often let affs get away with pre-requisite arguments way too much, usually affs can't coherently explain why reading their philosophy at the top of the 1AC and then ending with a plan of action doesn't fulfill the mandates of their pre-requisite.
K's: These are the best and worst debates. The bad ones tend to be insufferable and the good ones tend to be some of the most engaging and thought provoking. Sadly, most debaters convince themselves they fall into the latter when they are the former so please take a good, long look in the mirror before deciding which you fall under. I have a broad knowledge of K authors, but not an in depth one on many, so if you want to go for the K you better be doing that work for me, I won't vote for anything that I don't totally understand BEFORE reading evidence, because I think that is a key threshold any negative should meet (see above), so a complex critical argument can be to your advantage or disadvantage depending on how well you explain it. I also think the framing args for the K need to be impacted and utilized, that in my opinion is the easiest way to get my ballot (unless you turn case or win a floating pic). In other words, if you can run the K well, do it, if not, don't (at least not in the 2NR).
Edit: I think it usually helps to know what the judge knows about your critique, so this list below may help be a guide:
I feel very comfortable with, know the literature, and can give good feedback on: Nietzsche, Wilderson, Moten (& Harney), Security, Neolib, Historical Materialism, Colonialism (both Decoloniality and Postcolonialism), Fem IR, Deleuze and Guattari (at least relative to most).
I have both debated and read these arguments, but still have gaps in my knowledge and may not know all the jargon: Hillman, Schmitt, Edelman, Zizek cap args, Agamben, Warren, Ableism, Kristeva, Heidegger, Orientalism, Virillio, Lacan, Anthro, Ligotti, Bataille, settler colonialism metaphysics arguments.
ELI5: Baudrillard, postmodern feminism arguments, Killjoy, Bifo, Zizek psychoanalysis, Object Oriented Ontology, Spanos, Buddhism, Taoism, your specific strain of "cybernetics", probably anything that isn't on these lists but ask first.
Bad aff teams wait til the 2AR to decide what their best arguments are against a position. Good aff teams have the round vision to make strategic choices in the 1AR and exploit them in the 2AR. Great aff teams have the vision to create a comprehensive strategy going into the 2AC. That doesn't mean don't give yourself lots of options, it just means you should know what arguments are ideally in the 2AR beforehand and you should adapt your 2AC based off of the 1NC as a whole. Analytical arguments in a 2AC are vastly underused.
Non-Traditional Affirmatives: I'm fine with these. They don't excite me any more or less than a topical aff. I think the key to these aff's is always framing. Both because negatives often go for framework but also because it is often your best tool against their counter-advocacy/K. I often am more persuaded by Framework/T when the aff is antitopical, rather than in the direction of the resolution, but I've voted to the contrary of that frequently enough. This won't affect the decision but I'll enjoy the aff more if it is very specific (read: relevant/jermaine/essential) to the topic, or very personal to yourself, it annoys me when people read non-traditional aff's just to be shady. Being shady RARELY pays off in debate.
Answering K's: It is exceedingly rare that the neg can't win a link to their K. That doesn't mean you shouldn't question the link by any means, permutations are good ways to limit the strength of neg offense, but it means that impact turning the K/alternative is very often a better strategy than going for a link turn and permutation for 5 minutes in the 2AR. I think this is a large reason why aff's increasingly have moved further right or further left, because being stuck in the middle is often a recipe for disaster. That said, being able to have a specific link turn or impact turn to the K that is also a net benefit to the permutation while fending against the most offensive portions of negative link arguments are some of the best 2AR's.
I prefer quality over quantity of arguments. If you only need a minute in the 2NR/2AR then just use a minute, cover up any outs, and finish. I believe in the mercy rule in that sense, rambling or being braggadocios won't help your speaker points. I've tried to keep up with community inflation of speaker points, and I think they're right near average. I will vote against teams that clip and give the culprit 0 speaker points, however I believe in the standard of "beyond a reasonable doubt", so be certain before levying accusations and make sure to have a recording.
I'll give you +.1 speaker points if you can tell me what phrase appears the most in my philosophy. Both because it shows you care, you want to adapt to your judge, and maybe because I'm a tad narcissistic.
Things I like:
- A+ Quality Evidence (If you have such a card, and you explain why its better than the 3+ cards the other team read, I accept that more willingly than other judges)
- Brave (strategic) 1AR/2AR decisions
- Politics disads that turn each advantage
- If you are behind, I'd much rather you cheat/lie/steal (maybe not steal, and cheat within reason) than give up. If you ain't cheatin' you ain't tryin'.
- Neg blocks that only take 1-2 flows and just decimate teams.
- Controlling the "spin" of arguments (I'll give a lot of leeway)
- Red Bull/Monster/M&M's (Bringing me any of these will make me happy, me being happy = higher speaker points)
Things I don't like:
- Not knowing how to send speech docs in a timely manner!
- Debaters that act like they are of superior intelligence compared to their partner/opponents
- Reading arguments with little value other than trying to blindside teams (timecube, most word pics, etc.) Being shady RARELY pays off in debate.
- Being unclear
- Horses (Stop acting like they're so goddamn majestic, they're disgusting)
- Toasted Coconut
Currently a senior debating LD in high school, 10 career bids, cleared at eTOC 2020
I've competed in Policy and PF as well - the below paradigm should be flexible enough across all debate divisions
Email chains are good for evidence ethics and accessibility, spreading or no spreading.
Some quick notes and preferences:
1) I'll call clear/slow 3 times, so do be clear.
2) I like fast and efficient debates, so feel free to uplayer and spit out blippy analytics but make sure they're warranted arguments
3) Tech> Truth. Crazy args are fine, but the threshold for answers get lower. Higher level debates should always incorporate some level of truth behind arguments.
4) Non negotiable: speech times/rules, prep can be CX but CX can't be prep, compiling a doc is prep but flashing/emailing isn't, there's no "clarification time" before CX, clipping and ev ethics.
5) I'll disclose speaks. I think its a good norm to follow.
6) Don't let the type of debater you are facing effect your arguments. Basically, no mercy versus lay debaters. Exposure to different forms of argumentation on both sides is what spreads education within debate, regardless of experience; I wouldn’t have joined circuit LD if I hadn’t faced different progressive arguments at locals. Only condition is that you should be nice and reasonable: spread but send docs, be nice in cx, and your speaks will be boosted. Be sketchy and tricky just to get an easy ballot, and I'll nuke your speaks.
7) "If you are clearly better than your opponent and it is obvious that you are winning the round, please, dear lord, do not use all of your speech time just because you have the time- win the round and sit down so we can have a discussion and make it more educational than just you repeating conceded arguments for 13 minutes." ~ Stephen Scopa
8) I disclosed with good practices - open source with round reports and first/last 3. If your wiki is a model of what I believe to be good disclosure norms, show/tell me before the round and I'll bump up speaks.
9) Arguments and their truth level start at 0 and work their way up based on effective warranting. Conceded claims don't mean I automatically vote for them if they were originally unwarranted.
Note: Just because certain things are ranked low, DOESNT mean I won't vote off it, nor does it mean I don't enjoy it. I pride myself on trying to be as flex as possible, so feel free to run virtually anything. 1 = Most familiar/Best at judging this. 4 = Least Familiar/Worst at judging this
Policy/Larp - 1
Kritiks - 2
Theory - 1
Phil - 2
Tricks - 1
I'm serious with these pref ranks - I'm comfortable with judging any form of argumentation
Defaults: Judge Kick, ev > analytics
Be smart and do link analysis
Politics and process args are fine, higher bar for explanation tho
Zero risk is a thing
Explain cards - these debates are won with good analysis AND evidence
Ev comparison is key - don't make me spend 20 minutes reading through all the cards
1ARs - read theory vs CPs, low bar for case extensions if its simple
2NRs - answer theory vs CPs, please structure the collapse
Don't forget to kick out of things
Defaults: F/E are voters, drop the debater, competing interps, rvis
Standard weighing is dead - plz do it
Paragraph theory is fine
Be clear on standards so I at least have the standard name flowed
Terminal D on a shell is possible, so even if its competing interps, there has to be offense isolated at the end of the round.
Send interps/counter interps plz
Combo shells are cool, reasonability is persuasive versus them
Dont be a doc bot the entire time
Link analysis contextualized to the aff is cool, it isn't enough to win your theory of power
Framework (weigh/cant weigh case) determines the result most of the time - win it
Buzzwords don't mean anything - just because the 1ar didn't explicitly say the words "Role of the ballot" doesnt mean there isn't defense on the kritik's theory of power
These Affs should have isolated a problem and proposed a method or model
Personal narratives hold little weight to me since the ballot isn't a referendum on one's identity
Reading a K aff isn't an excuse to not be technical, same for the 2NR on T
Fairness/Clash/Research is cool, do weighing if going for T
No preference in a K aff v. framework debate - I've been on both sides
Nuanced framework interps and warrants are cool (sabotage, passive voice, etc.)
Defaults: epistemic confidence, comparative worlds
I'm cool with anything - the denser the phil the more explanation required
I think this type of debate still requires some level of interaction with actual offense
Spec phil affs are cool and I wish I saw more
Defaults: presumption negates unless the neg defends an advocacy, permissibility affirms
If it's gonna be a tricks round, delineate all arguments and dont be sketch in cx
Rebuttal extensions have to point me to what I am extending on the flow
Slow down on blips - flowability is key
Otherwise, I'll vote on anything explained.
I was a trad lad for a year, so you can have a traditional round, though I'd prefer otherwise.
Substance > V/VC debate
Frameworks are so arbitrary in lay debate, half the time theres no distinction between 2
I vote off the flow, ethos/pathos boosts speaks but won't just get you the ballot. Contrary to most beliefs, even traditional debate is based off of some level of technicality.
I think speaker points are based off of arguments made, and the strategies taken to attempt to win the round. As long as I understood you throughout the round, and you made sound strategic decisions in the round based off my paradigm, you'll get high speaks.
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
I HAVE ZERO TOPIC KNOWLEDGE
Top Level TLDR:
My hearing is awful. Slow down on analytics. If you have them prewritten you should send in the speech doc. See "Speech Doc" below
I judge a lot but do not coach or work at camps. Therefore super technical or specific arguments NEED TO BE EXPLAINED to me.
Favorite neg blocks:
---2NC T + CP + Case then 1NR 1 - 2 DA's
---2NC K then 1NR T + Case
Arguments must be sufficiently explained for me to evaluate them. This includes normal, conceded, and "troll" arguments (death good etc.)
I do not judge K's often nor am I knowledgeable about most of them. If your K FW jettisons the entirety of the 1AC you MUST TELL ME WHY.
Most CP's are OK but I will probably have a bias against anything that is Plan Plus. I lean aff on CP's with no solvency advocate.
If you go for T PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE explicitly tell me what standards you access and what their terminal impacts are. Debate T like a DA.
Both teams reading impact and UQ walls is extremely boring IMO. In-depth link-level clash is where it's at. I will be thrilled if you do this.
I am OK with any affirmative whether it be policy, critical, or performance. However, I think the latter 2 should be related to the resolution in some way. A good example of this would be Centennial KK on the Latin America topic who ran a Model Minority aff but centered it around the resolution by talking about forced Korean labor in Mexican haciendas. I'll link their aff wiki from that year if you want to take a look at it: https://hspolicy13.debatecoaches.org/bin/Centennial+MD/Koo-Koo+Aff.htm. Absent that type of connection, I am more neg leaning on framework.
If the neg reads more than 1 CP + 1 K you should pull the trigger on conditionality.
Multiplank CP's should have unconditional planks that number in low single digits. If this is violated the aff should read theory.
A good 2N will explain why their CP accesses the internal links or solvency mechanisms of the 1AC, or if you don't, why the CP is able to access the advantages better than the original 1AC methods. Absent that I am highly skeptical of "CP solves 100% of case" claims and default aff on specific solvency deficits.
I will quote some people I respect and share the same opinion with on this issue.
Maggie Berthiaume: "Teams that remove analytical arguments like permutation texts, counter-interpretations, etc. from their speech documents before sending to the other team should be aware that they are also removing them from the version I will read at the end of the debate — this means that I will be unable to verify the wording of their arguments and will have to rely on the short-hand version on my flow. This rarely if ever benefits the team making those arguments."
Bill Batterman: "Respect your opponents by sending the same documents to the email chain that you use to deliver your speeches. If you create separate versions of your speech documents (typically by deleting headings and analytical arguments) before sharing them, I will assume that you do not respect your opponents. I like debaters that respect their opponents."
Add me to the chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
DAs - have good turns case, pref better ev over a lot of it,
CPs - kinda neg on theory, condo is probably good, love a good CP that truly solves an aff
T -I don't love T all that much, need to really focus on impact and what debate looks at under both models
Ks: I like links most if they are specific and tied to the plan. The alternative needs to do something. I'm not super deep into k lits so you need to explain things
My background derives mostly from debating in policy for 4 years of high school. I am open to any field of argument (critique, topicality, theory, etc.), as long as it is done effectively. I evaluate debates based on an even combination of tech and truth, but if one team can provide better defense and description of their argument's impacts, almost any argument could win in front of me. Be sure to make comparison between your final advocacy and your opponents in order to persuade me to vote for you. Do not just restate your arguments with no clash with your opponents.
With regards to PF/LD debates - I have judged both divisions extensively. Similar to my policy opinions, I place a substantial importance on articulating the impacts to your argument. Beyond just "economic decline", what are the particular details of that scenario that should convince me to vote for you? Beyond just "fairness in debate", what are the particular repercussions of that lack of fairness in the activity?
Be sure to extend the warrants in your evidence, a simple tag line extension is hardly an argument.
Who Am I?
theory = sad face
make complete arguments
everything below is mostly a list about my preferences in debate that I think are noteworthy or diverge from community norms
For HS Criminal Justice Topic
I haven't done any research for this topic so I will need some technical stuff broken down and acronyms explained
I'm probably a lot more amenable to the abolition k than you'd expect
The topicality debates on this topic interest me
I like t debates.
I view these debates in terms of offense/defense. Reasonability will be a hard sell
Winning internal links to predictability or precision is much more important than limits in a vacuum.
I'm more likely to err towards smaller topics than protecting "aff innovation"
plan text in a vacuum is a bad standard
Winning turns case only matters if you win a reasonable risk of the DA.
Politics is great
DA non intrinsic/fiat solves the link/bottom of the docket aren't arguments that I'll ever care about
very neg biased on all counterplan theory.
If the aff makes a theory argument by shotgunning standards without a warrant or coherent argument in 10 seconds or a similar practice, the negative is completely justified by responding by pointing out the incomplete argument and shotgunning standards without warrant in return
Positional competition is good
Counterplans should be functionally and textually competitive
The aff should probably be certain and immediate
I will kick the counterplan for the negative always
used to be no plan no win, unsure now, especially on the criminal justice topic.
The aff gets to weigh the case
I amenable to weighing impacts to reps/epistemology
framework is much more persuasive as a competition/alt framing argument
I'm relatively familiar with most authors/arguments - but you still need to explain - I don't want to import my own knowledge
If your overview is longer than 45 seconds I will stop flowing after 45 seconds until you start doing line by line
Always a risk --> hard to convince me no risk
You can insert evidence you've re-highlighted
"for your da's, but not your cp's" is a silly standard
tech>truth --> impossible to convince me otherwise as long as the original argument was "complete"
Impact turns done well are a route to high speaks
I have a relatively high standard for the 1ar and don't have any problem writing off incomplete 1ar arguments
If you say the words "new affs bad" or "cooperative learning framework" you will lose speaker points and probably lose if it the 2nr option
Framing contentions make me sad
Alpharetta HS 2022’
I prefer that you keep your webcam on when you're speaking unless you have some extenuating circumstance that prevents you from doing so.
Feel free to post-round or ask any questions about the round.
^these are more or less the same thoughts that I have after Jordan explains everything to me ----read through this paradigm instead of mine
if you have questions about his fancy words, feel free to ask me
I am a lot worse for the K and framing/soft left
I'm neutral on more cards vs less cards---just make good arguments
Jordan is a lot smarter
I don't need a card doc
I probably overinflate speaker points
how to get good speaks: be technical and make smart arguments---I especially like when people call out their opponents' evidence or make connections between different flows
Below 27 –did you even debate?
27-28- decent foundation but you need to do some work
28-28.7- solid but you have room for improvement
28.7-29.5- Great debating, keep it up
29.5-30- You're in the wrong division, One of the best novices I have ever seen
+0.3 speaks if you show me a good flow at the end of the round – your handwriting can suck, I don’t care – I want to see that you have a good foundation - this works on a sliding scale so even if your flow is half decent, show me and I'll give you something
+0.3 for opensource---show me immediately after the round
hi. my name is ashwin. not judge. ashwin
i debate(d) at montgomery bell academy for 4(ish) years
add me to the chain pls - email@example.com
i would like a card doc pls
tech > truth - i think winning a debate does not rely upon the truth of the arguments you read, but rather how you argue them, albeit a truthful argument is easier to argue
death is bad
debate is good
read a plan that defends a hypothetical implementation of the affirmative - i've thought about this every way i possibly can, and im still unable to come up with a compelling reason for why a model of debate where the affirmative is not topical is net better for either education or fairness than an affirmative that is topical - that being said, ig i classify myself in the "education" category of T - i didn't win a lot, but i did learn a lot
and feel free to post round me - this is debate, right? - if you dont agree with my decision, then tell me - unfortunately, im not tech savvy enough to edit the ballot(maybe if you are adamant enough, you could show me how?) - nevertheless, i was probably right the first time, but again, that's debatable
persuasiveness - i think speaking fast has severely diminished the art of ethos and being persuasive - i like a slower, more persuasive 2nr/2ar and your speaks will get a boost as well
the actual stuff
aside from the three arguments listed above, i do not have many predispositions about arguments. debate is not static, and therefore it would be ill-suited for me to tell you what to go for. if you think this cp is strategic against this affirmative, i encourage you to read it. my paradigm is not my ballot, rather your 2nr/2ar is. tell me why you think the cp is strategic and tell me why you think it wins you the debate. i will do my best to keep my opinions and experiences out of the round, and leave the debating up to the debaters.
i'm not the best k judge - reading philosophical literature at 300 words a minute isnt my cuppa tea - i need hours to understand these arguments, not minutes - i'm very comfortable voting against the k just because i dont understand it, just as i would do if i dont understand the nuance of a certain cp - i dont make decisions based on a misunderstanding of the facts
good things :)
framing the debate in the 2nr/2ar
thorough link analysis
well thought out impact turns
a damming cross ex
making fun of other mba debaters(+0.1 points)
depth over breadth
bad things :(((
kritiks that somewhat link at the mega metalevel
disads that somewhat link at the mega metalevel
lack of argument explanation
not knowing your evidence
asking me for my email before the round(-0.1 points)
taking an eternity and a half to send docs
being an ass, especially in cx - i hate it when people force a laugh during cx as a method of persuasion - it's extremely antagonising and i will likely dock points if it becomes excessive
speed demons - i get it, you can read cards fast - thats fine - but this is a speaking activity and i should be able to flow your speech, not your document - idc how fast you read cards, but slow tf down on analytics, especially if your doc is just cards - the average human can write 60 wpm - you are speaking >250 wpm - do you see the problem here?
not taking notes when i give comments
good luck and have fun! debate is hard, so try your best and your speaker points will reflect your effort!
Pronouns: Any (They/He/She/Them/Him/Her)
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org - put me on the email chain
Updated in October, 2020.
Experience: 2 years high school debate at Mona Shores High School, 2.5 years college debate at Wayne State University, 1 year coaching at Mona Shores High School, 2 years coaching at Detroit Country Day School, and a long judging history over that time to present, for both high school and college-level debate.
I'll give a short version: I'll listen to just about anything, minus overtly problematic arguments (racism good, sexism/gender discrimination good, fascism good, etc.), which will at best lead to tanked speaker points, at worst an automatic loss (and I lean that way).
I have a fair amount of experience debating both traditional policy and K frameworks but find myself being more entertained in K v K rounds. It's a T/Framework thing, it's boring and I don't trust the government to do anything right. Read more below, I definitely still do like a policy v. policy round, I just hate voting on T.
I expect everyone to be timing themselves. Please don't call me "judge," I don't like most of them IRL. "Logan" is fine.
Virtual Debate: I don't care whether or not your camera is on, regardless of what the tournament rules are saying. If your virtual workspace is anything like mine, it's improvised and ugly. Also, it feels like I'm invading your privacy on some weird level when you're debating from your bedroom. 2020 is weird enough without trying to force you to show me your house. Also, if you're experiencing connection issues, turning the video streaming off can really help. On another topic, CX is kind of tough right now due to talking over one another by accident. I don't really have a solution for it other than trying to stick to the model of whoever's not speaking next asks, the person who just spoke answers. That being said, if you can tag-team effectively virtually then go for it. When the questioner tells you to stop answering, stop answering.
Dropped arguments are usually true arguments (save for the above), you must make the argument early enough in the debate for me to vote on it (outside of theory/common-sense or evidence-based analysis). That being said, I vote on arguments I understand. If I don't understand, that's on you, this is a speech activity.
More probabilistic impacts outweigh bigger magnitude ones for me, on almost every level. Establishing probability is most important to me and I think the overemphasis on existential impacts is making policy debate stale (as well as literally untrue, I have not yet died in a nuclear war).
A lot of the longer version below doesn't really apply in high school debate outside of Open division.
The long version (ask specific questions before the round if anything is unclear):
T/Framework - T needs standards and voters on the neg and counter-standards and -voters on the aff or you probably won't win it. Framework is also fine, but you should do it right (when I didn't go for Cap, I went for framework). You need to have impacts to Framework that you can weigh against the aff (or another off-case argument you can weigh). "Fairness" is not an impact I'm going to vote for. Framework can be defensive if you want to go for the other off, and this is usually the best way to use it in front of me. I don't find skills arguments very convincing at all and I find them very easily turned as the only skills I learned in debate either A. weren't transferable or B. were skills that help the government murder people more effectively (this is definitely more for college and I'll definitely vote on skills args at the high school level). I have a high threshold for this line of argumentation and I'm not ashamed to hold you to that, but I will vote on them if they're mishandled or you've found one of the few I believe (here's a hint: research probably isn't inherently bad). Explain the impacts to the generally accepted ones like fairness (research burden, ground loss, etc.) Probabilistic impacts matter more here too: Does the aff you're running framework against stand a chance of modifying debate culture? What specific fairness/skills loss was there? The most probabilistic impacts happen in-round, in front of my face, and this is how I weigh T. I default to competing interpretations, as do most, but my threshold on reasonability is comparatively low, because for me to vote on competing T interpretations, you're going to have to convince me beyond a doubt that the way they violated the topic was uniquely bad for you debating in this round. That means if you're reading a CP or DA that clearly links, you probably shouldn't run T as I will probably buy the "but their DA links" arg.
The Aff, in general: I was a 2N and when I was double 2s I hated being aff, so I don't have much advice here. Most teams who are aff lose in the 1AR, but the 2AC is close behind. Time allocation is much more important on the aff (which is why I hated being a 2A, I'm slow), so identify which arguments are the biggest threat early on and adjust accordingly. The biggest mistake newer debaters make is forgetting about all that evidence you read in the 1AC, which should have embedded answers to your weak spots.
Policy Affs: Cool. You should probably kick some of it by the end of the debate at the college level, free up some time for that 1AR and 2AR. Left-policy affs are usually weaker than both their policy and K options (standard policy follows the rules better, helping you out in a framework debate, and the K probably solves better), so try not to read them unless you have really good ideas for how to use it.
K affs - Fine by me, be prepared for the framework debate, win the impact turns to framework and I'll vote for you. That being said, I still have to understand. These weird "every theorist ever" affs are kind of getting out of hand (at least at the high school level), but if you can explain it, run it. No plan text or advocacy statement required if the mechanism is clear. If you're going to run a left-policy aff, you'd might as well just run the K version in front of me, I'm good for it. I prefer K v K debates in these rounds because I hate listening to framework/T (it's just boring), use it as leverage and time-skew instead. I also think they're more useful and educational because waxing poetic about how a team broke the rules for 4 speeches is not only extremely boring, it's self-fulfilling and frankly only useful for institutionalized debate (which isn't a real thing IRL). They should probably still be tangential to the topic, but I can be convinced the topic should be ignored in favor of something better.
The Neg, in general: The more specific the strategy to the aff, the better chance you have of winning. General topic links are usually not enough and need some analysis to make them compelling. That's not to say I won't vote on more general links/uniqueness evidence, but that the aff is probably winning your DA/K/CP coming out of the 2AC and you'll need to develop the arguments a lot more in the block.
DAs - fine, run them, explain them, win them. Winning a link (and the internal links) is more important than totally winning the impact. I'll vote on risk, depending on how things are going on the case flow.
Theory - I've become a bit more open to theory but the only theory I find automatically compelling is conditionality bad (and that's if the neg runs too many condo off-case args, "too many" being determined by the skill level). If theory is dropped and is a reason to reject the team, that is super bad for the team that dropped it, keep track of the line-by-line. Best case, I reject the argument, worst case I reject the team (if they've dropped it but you haven't explained it well, I'll probably just reject the arg, be prepared to lose if your 2AR is 5/6 on theory). Theory about generally accepted and common args is probably useless (50 states fiat, neg fiat, limits on aff fiat, etc.), but I'll vote on it if it's explained well and is mishandled by the other team, or you can convince me an actual offense was committed (a long shot). Your theory should have warranted impacts, just like any argument ("They did a bad thing that's bad because...").
CPs - See above for how I feel about conditional advocacies. I can be convinced of most counterplan theory (again, see above). The best PIC/Ks are when no one knows that's what they are until the 2NR, usually that's an immediate neg ballot. PIC theory is usually a wash after you read your blocks at each other. I love a good advantage CP and I hate a bad one.
Ks - I went for the Cap K in almost every 2NR of my college/late high school career. Ks should usually engage something specific about the aff. Specific links are good. However, I don't think you necessarily need them, your general ones probably do the job well enough, paired with explanation. Ks should prove the aff is a uniquely bad idea/influenced by bad ideas and prove the alt can solve the impact. They should prove the perm doesn't work (preferably just being able to cross-apply case offense and prove it still links) and that the impacts outweigh the aff. This means you have to win the framework debate too, unless the K has existential impacts). I'll vote on risk of alt solvency if there's enough defense/risk on the case flow, probably at a lower threshold than most, given the framework debate basically has to be won (unless you kick the alt and go for structural impacts, which means you're probably having a bad time anyway). Fiat is illusory. It just is. Good policy-prone teams know this better than the K team.
More specific thoughts, as I did debate the K:
Cap: Honestly, I have a slightly higher threshold because I went for it so much when I debated. I'm an anti-capitalist in "real life" and familiar with most theoretical arguments contained within and if I think it's a dumb argument (not even in the round, just generally) I might have some bias, but I promise I'll try not to. I love great Cap rounds, though, so, if you're confident in your strategy (and maybe more importantly, theoretical basis), go for it!
Queerness: Read this for maybe a year as well, but wasn't as heavily invested or well-researched. That being said, I am passingly familiar with the field and like the line of argumentation, but it must be explained well, both for my sake and your opponents', as Edelman can be basically incomprehensible at times.
AntiBlackness: I find this and Cap most compelling when talking about debate writ large, which AntiBlackness debaters frequently do (not so much on the Cap side, but you should, debate is classist). I have found the best AntiBlackness rounds I've spectated or watched (or, rarely, was a part of) directly tied their impacts to the round or the topic (governance writ large isn't as good of a link/internal link, but use it anyway). However, I also think that many AntiBlackness debaters have a hard time encountering a Black policy debater, when they really shouldn't. The strategy should NOT be to attack or cast doubt on this debater's Blackness, but the structure of policy debate that incentivizes skewed topics, interpersonal violence, resource skewing, and bad rhetoric. I'm fairly read on the subject of AntiBlackness but, as a white person, I'm always listening closely in these rounds (not to imply I don't otherwise). Also, as a white person, I CANNOT be trusted fully to adjudicate these rounds, which AntiBlackness debaters would do well to keep in mind for all of their white judges. I find alternate root cause arguments fairly unconvincing on most Ks, but this one even more so (although there are TYPES of arguments I can find convincing in this realm, such as the totalizing description of oppression that some AntiBlackness teams make; It's complicated). I (and if "we" were being honest, most white judges and debaters) am usually pretty uncomfortable adjudicating these rounds as I feel whiteness is inherently moderating in these cases. That being said, I think white debaters should be very careful with these arguments (to the point of maybe considering not reading them), ESPECIALLY in reading prewritten tags. Don't call yourself Black or imply that you are a part of the "Black Body" if you are not.
Anthro: I can be convinced, but it's been a running joke to me (and pretty much anyone who isn't a die-hard) for years. I'm a vegetarian for ethical reasons, so I'm probably more persuadable than most people on this one. Animal death matters and anthropocentrism definitely defines our relationship to the environment, but I'm gonna find it really annoying if you equate animal death to human death, as I feel like this has some... implications. The better impacts here are rooted in environmental destruction, but there are easier ways to that impact.
Ableism: I am very easily convinced that the root cause of ableism is capitalism. Other alt causes could probably convince me too. Always open to hearing your way around that, though.
Beaudrillard/Symbolic Exchange/"The Real": I gotta be honest, this usually isn't helpful without being combined with theory that evaluates an axis of oppression under this theoretical framework. Another point of honesty: Tough to understand, especially being read at Mach 5 in a debate round. Explain yourself well, impact it out, and explain how the alt resolves the impact. The link debate is less important with this type of K (at least to me), but it should still be there.
Rhetoric more generally: Should probably contain a justification for the self-link here, but other than that I can be pretty easily convinced that debate is bad and the rhetoric we use sucks too, read further on for details.
Speaker points - I generally try to think as little as possible about them, as speaker points are subjective and largely useless except for tie-breaking. I am a chronic stutterer, empathize with speaking difficulties, and they obviously won't affect speaks. Doing things like using problematic language, misgendering, stealing prep, being generally rude, etc. will at worst get you dropped (malicious or ignorant use of problematic language or misgendering will get you dropped 100% of the time), and at worst will get you docked speaks. However, I understand mistakes happen, especially in the case of misgendering, and as long as it doesn't become a reoccurring/malicious issue, I won't be very heavy-handed with the docking. Get to know your competitors and asking for pronouns never hurts. The way you earn the most amount of speaker points is good STRATEGIC decision-making. I don't really care about your style, but the way you manage the round. Also, if you're not using all of your prep/speech time, it better be perfect or you'll probably lose speaks for that too.
One caveat, definitely more for college-level - My debate experience has been complex and frankly, frequently negative in university. The community is toxic and often overworks students to the point of serious mental health issues. I am thankful for what I learned and what resources debate gave me, but some of the behavior in this community is inexcusable and leads to the sort of institutional abuse (verbal, emotional, and sexual) that plagues politics, which makes debate a good microcosm for government (which, if it's not clear, I hate). I take extreme issue with anyone that uses institutional power in debate to give themselves or their team an edge and will make that clear if I think you or your team is doing so. Of course, this is an unsolvable problem, as more wealthy schools have inherently better access to resources and, thus, better win rates. I encourage every debater to remember that debate does not happen in a vacuum and to respect your fellow debaters no matter their skill level, style, or status because at the end of the day, your skill level, style, and status are all dependent on luck and environment. I also especially encourage coaches to take this into consideration and help your students understand this, as you are ultimately responsible for not just their careers and health, but everyone else's in this community (especially because it is usually coach ego causing these issues). All of this being said makes me sound like I have a heavy bias against policy debate (versus the K), which I'd like to think I don't, but I may have one. I suppose what this all means for your rounds, besides the obvious decorum I expect, is that I likely have a higher threshold for arguments that assume policy debates, and to some extent government and statehood, are inherently good. I believe some of the skills arguments, but any argument about upward mobility (gross), political understanding good (which "political understanding?"), or literature knowledge (again, what "literature knowledge?") I may chuckle to myself over, but begrudgingly vote for if the other team drops the ball. I think it's pretty proven that most former debaters either become bureaucrats or other government (gross) or debate coaches (due to lack of time to pursue literally anything else in college), which makes me basically not believe most policy debate education arguments. All of that being said, K affs focusing on debate bad still have to win. I know these perspectives in debate are rare, with many viewing policy debate education as being worth power, time, and energy trade-offs, but I've only seen these issues exacerbated in recent years. Policy snobs (myself included) need to either modify the activity to help with these issues or embrace other forms of debate. That likely makes me more malleable to arguments that break "the rules," such as form or content differences, because anything else is debate fascism.
High School: Montgomery Bell Academy
College: University of Michigan
Experience: I debated in high school for four years. It has been a few months since I've last flowed so you might want to go a notch slower than you usually do but I'll tell you if you're unclear.
-Dropped arguments are true arguments only if they are fleshed out and weren't a one line blip when first made. If you read a one line condo blip and they drop it I probably won't vote on it.
-Conditionality is usually pretty good. More than three and I might raise an eyebrow but it's still defendable.
-If you are debating topicality you need to do a good job explaining what your vision of the topic looks like relative to your opponent. I haven't debated on this topic so my understanding of the literature is incredibly limited so keep that in mind.
-On framework debates I think fairness is an impact. Aff teams should impact out why the process of debating the topic is bad, not why the topic itself is bad.
-Ks can be cool. I have a familiarity with some of the literature because I had to answer them but you still need to explain your arguments throughly. Please stick to the flow. It annoys me when line by line gets thrown out the window so you can group everything and read a nerd essay off your computer. Also, explain what your framework interp means for the ballot. If you win it, how does that change my decision calculus. Do I ignore the alternative? Do you just need to win a risk of the link?
- Process CPs are generally bad. PICs are generally good. These beliefs aren't set in stone and I can vote either way. Rule of thumb for any other CP is if it looks cheaty it probably is.
- Zero risk of DA or case is possible, but not on impact defense
- If you have a framing contention, make sure to contextualize it to the round. Probability or ethics first framing is meaningless if you have no game on the DA.
I'm a sophomore at USC, debated for SPASH for 3 years in high school.
Add me to the chain: email@example.com
TLDR: You can read anything you want in front of me. I've had policy experience and k experience.
- Quality > Quantity
- Tech over truth, but I want to see some level of truth or substance in your argument.
- Spreading is fine, but be clear
- Don't clip cards, if there is evidence of clipping I will end the round and give a win to the other team
- Flashing/emailing isn't prep but please don't take forever
- If you're reading theory slow down a bit, and tell me if you want it on a new sheet
- Dropped arguments are true arguments, but they still have to be impacted out
- I'll weigh a performance the same as evidence, I will flow it too
- Debate is whatever you tell me it is (If the negative reads framework and claims debate is a game..and the aff has no response..then it's a game)
-Don't be racist. Don't be sexist.
Current Senior at Hume-Fogg
I don't have particular argument preferences, I just want to see what you do best. Make sure to answer arguments in the order that they are presented(ie line-by-line) and most of all, have fun.
My email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Alpharetta High School '12
Emory University '15
I debated four years at Alpharetta, qualifying to the TOC in my senior year, before debating for Emory University. Currently, I work in international localization for Netflix Originals, with a specific focus on anime content.
My top-line advice if you have me in the back of the room is do what you do best. These are general predispositions, not immutable laws of judging, and you're always best off advancing a strategy you know well.
Please add me to the email chain: email@example.com.
Are you OK with K's/Critical Affs/Planless Affs/Performance/Non-Traditional Affs?
I've run everything from super 'policy' affs with giant heg and econ advantages to 1ACs that consisted largely of a poem and leftist arguments. In high school and college, I went for stuff like Security, Badiou, Derrida, and had a good share of 1NCs that were 1-Off Kritik. If this is your jam, I'm a good judge for you.
When it comes to framework and framework-related arguments against these types of Affs/K's, your 2NR/2AR 'story' should focus on the educational implications of each side's approaches. I'm interested in the question of how to best make debate a powerful, educational, and useful activity for students. How does your position interact with those considerations?
Framework aside, I feel it's always preferable for teams to engage their opponent's K/Performance/Identity argument than go for an exclusion-driven approach. Not only is it more respectful of these methods in the activity, it's often more strategic.
Should I ever make Theory arguments an option in your rounds?
I'm probably more willing to vote on theory arguments than your average judge. That said, if you want to make "Conditionality Bad," "50 State Fiat Bad," or other theory arguments an option, you need to focus on what debate looks like under the other side's interpretation. What happens to prep, strategy, research, and why is it bad? Do the impact work, talk about what your vision of optimal debate looks like. These debates tend to be especially messy, so minimizing theory jargon is recommended.
Thoughts on the Politics DA?
Love them. My senior year was almost entirely me taking that week's Politics DA in the 1NR. My favorite 1NR's dig deep into the aff evidence, tear it apart, and make solid comparative analysis. For the aff, don't be shy about putting all your firepower against 1 or 2 serious logical holes in the DA (this goes for any, not just Politics/Elections). The internal linkage between a particular bill passing to a terminal impact is typically pretty flimsy, and Aff's that push that point will do well in front of me. Zero risk of the disad is an RFD I've given.
Anything else you really like?
Impact turns, advantage counterplans, highly-specific case debates.
Any strong opinions about Topicality?
I enjoy a good T debate. Reasonability is hard to win in front of me, but strong counter-interpretations are underrated.
At the end of the round, how do you usually go about making your decision?
When the round ends, I take a note of all the key questions to resolve, then work through them one-by-one. This means framing arguments ("prioritize X," "view the [X] through the lens of [Y]," "here are the 2 ways to vote [X]") are great ways to win my ballot. I also rarely call for cards unless a nexus question of evidence quality decides the round. To borrow from Ed Lee's paradigm, "while I am a huge fan of quality evidence, my decisions will privilege a debater’s assessment of an argument over my reading of a piece of evidence."
What can I do to get high speaks if you're my judge?
Have fun! Be nice. Utilize cross-x effectively. My favorite debaters were all fairly slow at spreading, yet extremely strong speakers. And hey, I work in the anime industry, so pandering with references never hurts.
Any pet peeves we should know about?
Two pet peeves. First, please, please, please email/flash speeches in a timely fashion. Second, there is no "flow clarification" segment in policy debate, i.e., if you're asking what cards a team read, that's part of CX. You should always be flowing, with the speech doc as a reference, but not as the source of truth. There's been an unfortunate trend away from strong flowing skills, please don't let needless mistakes happen to you.
"Don't forget. Believe in yourself. Not in the you who believes in me. Not the me who believes in you. Believe in the YOU who believes in yourself."
- Kamina, Gurren Lagann, Episode 8
I wish you the best of luck and hope my feedback will help for future rounds. I love the activity and the fantastically cool people in it. I’ll do whatever I can to support you and help you grow as a debater.
First, a little about me...
I debated Public Forum for three years in high school at Piedmont Academy and Policy for four years at the University of Georgia.
Yes, put me on the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
I expect respect from everyone involved no matter the climate - race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, etc. IF you have something controversial to say, I expect you to back it up and give it a purpose.
Let's talk PF:
Do you expect everything in the final focus to also be in the summary? Not necessarily - every round is different and comes down to different things, but I think having your main points extended in both is important. By the time of the summary and final focus, your winning points should be obvious (this includes your impact calculus).
Do second speaking teams have to respond to the first rebuttal? Yes, if time permits.
Do first speaking teams have to extend defense in the first summary? Defense, yes. New arguments, no.
Do you flow/judge off crossfire? It depends on how the round is going; crossfire can either make or break you, and if it is a close round, crossfire will play a part in the decision.
Do teams have to have more than one contention? No.
Does framework have to be read in the constructives? This is a loaded question - if you think you will need framework, include it in the constructive. AT THE LEAST, framework MUST be apart of the rebuttals. Summary or final focus is too little too late to bring up or heavily impact the framework debate.
Speed is fine, off-time roadmaps are encouraged, do not dominate or take over your partner's crossfire, but if needed, I will allow *some tag-teaming. I don't want you to be a sitting duck, but crossfire is the time where judges can see just how much you really know about your case, evidence, and arguments.
Let's talk Policy:
At the end of the day, the debate will come down to who had the most convincing points and who extended them the best. Clash is key, impact calc is key.
K Arguments: I am fine with K arguments, but do not assume that what you are advocating for is clear to all those who are listening. I need to see why the K outweighs staying on-case and why it is beneficial to debate.
DAs: I love me a good disad. Economy DA, Politics DA, any DA. If you can prove to me why the DA outweighs what the Aff can do, then I am all in it.
Topicality: I am completely fine with T args; I think in the chaos they keep the debate centered. But be warned, if you go for T, it must be won in the round.
CPs: Counterplans are fine IF they are not messy. I have seen, gone against, and read some really complex CPs that just don't pan out in the time permitted. If the explanation is not there in the planks and you struggle to add all you are trying to say, you probably shouldn't do it.
Don't get lost in the complexity of what Policy debate is; no matter the format, all debates come down to what the arguments are, how the evidence withstands, and how the debaters themselves carry the case through.
If anyone has any questions or if I left anything out, don't hesitate to ask :)
Good luck to all, and God bless!
A few things about me (TLDR version):
Former debater at University of Georgia
Plans are good
Impact calculus is important. Tell me how to write my ballot.
Clarity > Speed
Cross-ex is binding
Have fun and don't be rude!
Framework - I'm a good judge for framework. Debate is a game and framework is procedural question. I’m persuaded by negative appeals to limits and I think fairness is an impact in and of itself. I don’t think the topical version of the aff needs to “solve” in the same way the aff does. If there are DA's to the topical version of the aff, that seems to prove neg ground under the negative’s vision of debate. Tell me what your model of debate looks like, what negative positions does it justify, and what is the value of those positions.
Kritiks - I think it's really hard for the neg to win that the aff shouldn't get to weigh the plan provided the aff answers framework well. I've got a decent grasp on the literature surrounding critical security studies, critiques of capitalism, settler colonialism, and feminist critiques of IR. The aff should focus on attacking the alternative both at a substance and theoretical level. It's critical that the 2AR defines the solvency deficits to the alternative and weigh that against the case. Negative debaters should spend more time talking about the case in the context of the kritik. A good warranted link and turns the case debates are the best way for negative teams to get my ballot. Tell me how the links to the aff uniquely lead to the impacts.
Counterplans - My initial impression of whether your counterplan is legitimate will be whether or not you have a specific solvency advocate. There's nothing better than a well-researched mechanism counterplan and there's nothing worse than a hyper-generic process counterplan that you recycle for every negative debate on the topic. I generally think that 2 conditional options are good, but I can be persuaded by 3 condo is okay. PICs are probably good. Consult/Conditioning/delay counterplans, international fiat, and 50 state fiat are bad. Typically, if you win theory I reject the argument not the team unless told otherwise.
Disads- I love a good DA and case debate. I've gone for the politics DA a lot in my college career. Normally uniqueness controls the link, but I can persuaded otherwise. Impact calc and good turns cases analysis is the best!
Add me onto the e-mail chain, my email is email@example.com. If your computer crashes, stop the timer until you can get your doc back up.
Alpharetta '20, Emory '24
J.W. Patterson Foundation Fellow 2019-2020
Currently debating for Emory.
Note for Criminal Justice 2020-2021 Topic: Tournaments are on Zoom, make sure you have the best internet connection you can. Ideally, you should keep your cameras on throughout the debate, at the very least keep them on while you are talking. I am not as familiar with the specific topic language and/or acronyms so explain them.
Disclaimer: These are just my general thoughts about debate; anything in here can be changed by the quality of debating done in the round. Tech > Truth, unless you're argument is morally repugnant, racist, or incoherent. Make sure to tell me if you open source and I will increase your speaker points if I think it is proper disclosure (This means all cards read in round by you are posted for ALL rounds).
K Affs and Framework:
Good K Affs should be related to the topic in some way and have central offense/defense centered around the mechanism defended in the 1AC. I like Framework debates on both sides. My gut reaction is that fairness is an impact but 2Ns are getting worse and worse at explaining why so I can be persuaded otherwise. Teams that impact turn procedural fairness have a better shot at winning my ballot. Larger overviews are acceptable in these debates but do not lose the line by line. I am probably better at judging KAffs vs T over KAffs vs Ks.
Do not assume I will know your literature base if you are going for high theory or K's that are not commonly read (Capitalism, Security, Settler Colonialism, Antiblackness etc,) then the K will require an extra level of analysis/thesis explanation because I will not vote for arguments I cannot explain back in the RFD. Teams that go the extra step to explain the link-level will be rewarded. This means pulling direct quotes from opponents' evidence, highlighting cards, and pointing out lapses in tags. It truly filters the threshold for the impact and framework debate. In a close debate, I am likely to let the Aff weigh their impacts, but the technicalities of the K can mitigate how relevant the case is - Does the Alt solve the case? Does the K access a specific root cause claim? Does the link turn the case? These are central.
Theory Leanings: Conditionality is good unless it's egregious. 2NC CPs are usually good, especially to get out of add-ons. Creative PICs will be rewarded, but the more generic it gets, the more abusive. Most Process CPs can be beaten by a well-articulated Perm or a heavy theory push.
CPs/DAs/Impact Turns/Case Debate/T:
- CPs - Read them, go for them. Smart, analytical CPs are fun but make sure you have a good defense of them or the threshold for solvency deficits will be low.
- DAs - Turns Case can change the game, but can also easily be answered by smart analytics. Neg teams that have carded turns case need to be handled properly by the Aff. Aff teams should identify the weak spots and exploit them, instead of trying to cover every single portion.
- Impact Turns - Good stuff, can be a gamechanger for both the Aff and the Neg. Impact Comparison and Evidence Comparison will win these debates so do that.
- Case - Has quickly become my favorite type of debates. Asserting "Presumption" without a clear reason means nothing, explain the reasoning. Neg teams that go the extra step to indict authors, answer specific I/Ls, and read multilayered defense to Aff impacts will make me happy. Aff teams that do not fold, are efficient and smart on case questions also impress me equally.
- T - I like it a lot when it is done well. Both teams NEED to give me a clear picture of what the topic looks like under their interpretation, I will almost always default to competing interpretations because teams are just bad at going for reasonability these days. Limits are the controlling I/L for the Neg. Aff teams that choose one central piece of offense and explain how that implicates the Limits DA are doing something right.
Speaker Points: I reward clarity, speed, and efficiency. I also reward smart, strategic decisions. I will likely adjust speaker points relative to the tournament and entries. I find myself giving higher speaker points to people who are confident but not cocky, mean, or rude (That will drop your speaks). Also if you are funny, be funny, I like to laugh. I like jokes about past/present Alpharetta or Emory Debaters. If you are not funny, please don't try and make jokes it'll be awkward.
If you disagree or have problems with any decisions I have made or my paradigm, please feel free to ask questions.
- Clipping is maximum penalty.
- Anything unethical is maximum penalty.
- Speed is good, but make sure you are clear or it will be reflected in your speaks.
- Final rebuttals need to answer the key questions of the round - tell me why you win.
- Don't waste time - show up to the round on time, send the chain on time, finish on time.
Last edited on 4/30/21 to add a statement on racism in debate and a criticism of the trends within the debate community that enable prejudice to thrive.
Experience: Five years debating middle school/high school with my last year of high school debate spent mostly judging, followed by a four year break from debate in college, before returning to coach for Druid Hills High School in August of 2020.
Statement on Racism (& other Prejudices) in Debate
Debate is a game, but the fact that it is a game does not make what we say in round inconsequential. There is no context in which our speech is ever without consequence, and encouraging debaters to assume that the arguments they make are without connection to the "real world" is inherently harmful, not to mention anti-educational. I am therefore fundamentally opposed to the notion of treating debate as a pure game in which any argument goes no matter its consequences. Instead, I believe judges have an ethical obligation to consider the meaning of the precedent set by each decision, and whether it is just to both teams, as well as to future debaters.
My primary concern in any round is the consequences of what teams say. Considering the meaning of each team's arguments in context is the basis for any given one of my decisions. This inevitably results in some rounds being decided in a way that does not favor the more technically proficient team. Many debaters may find this to be against their expectations, but it is a necessary stance to take if we are to be serious about the activity and its place in the world we inhabit.
Debate should encourage students to see themselves as agents capable of acting to create a better world. We will not achieve this vision for our activity so long as we pretend it is in a realm separate from reality. Judges have an ethical obligation to oppose prejudice in round including but by no means limited to: racism, queerphobia, antisemitism, sexism, Islamophobia, ableism, and classism, among others.
I see the role of the judge as that of an educator concerned primarily with what teams learn from the experience. Therefore, the most important aspect of being a judge, to me, is to provide good constructive criticism to teams about their arguments and performance, and to promote the educational qualities of debate. When teams are using prep time, I am usually writing speech by speech feedback for my ballots––which I very much hope teams and their judges will read. As a judge, I want you to come out of the round, win or lose, feeling like you learned something worthwhile.
As an educator concerned with what can be learned from the round, I think the quality of arguments are much more important than their quantity, and seek to avoid rewarding meritless arguments even if they are dropped. For this reason, I have a very high threshold for trivial arguments like the fifty states counter plan. I prefer to decide rounds based upon the meaning of the arguments presented and their clash rather than by concession.
I flow the round based on what I hear, preferring not to use speech documents. For this reason, clarity is more important than speed. For an argument to exist in the round, it needs to be spoken intelligibly. Rounds that are slower typically offer better quality arguments and fewer mistakes. A relatively slow team that responds to arguments thoughtfully will get better speaker points than a team that relies on reading arguments in bulk without significantly explaining them. Whenever possible, I prefer to decide rounds not by penalizing teams for arguments dropped, but by rewarding those who have the best clash.
Tag-teaming in cross examination will cost speaker points for the speaker who should not be in CX. Far too often it appears that tag teaming takes on a gendered aspect with young men interrupting or answering for young women. This reinforces sexism in debate.
One last thing: there is no place for prejudice in debate, and I will not tolerate racism, homophobia, transphobia, etc. in round.
Argument Specific preferences:
Plan-less critical affirmatives: Critical affirmatives can serve the important function of offering valuable critiques of debate, but also pose unique challenges regarding the fairness of the activity, given that their lack of a plan text may be used in certain cases to avoid clash. My primary concern in judging a critical affirmative, therefore, is to determine whether the value of its critique and the changes to debate it proposes outweigh any harm to clash that may be caused by not defending a plan text. In this context, performative elements that enact the aff's critique directly in round are immensely helpful to my ability to weigh the value of the affirmative. Debaters of critical affirmatives should not assume my familiarity with their arguments and take care to explain them clearly without jargon so that I may fully appreciate the meaning of their arguments. If a critical affirmative is presented in a way that is unclear, so that I have difficulty weighing the meaning of its arguments, I may default to the negative on topicality in order to preserve a precedent of fairness in debate.
Kritiks: At its most fundamental level, a kritik is a critical argument that examines the consequences of the assumptions made in another argument. I love well run kritiks, but for me to decide in favor of a kritik it needs a specific link to the assumptions in the 1AC and a clearly articulated alternative that involves a specific action (as opposed to an utopian alt). Experience informs me that K's with generic links and vague alternatives make for bad debate.
Framework: Lately this term seems to have become a synonym for a kind of impact calculus that instead of focusing on magnitude, risk, and time-frame attempts to convince me to discard all impacts but those of the team running this argument. Framework, as I understand it, is a synonym to theory and is about what the rules of debate should be. Why should it be a rule of debate that we should only consider one type of impact? It seems all impacts in debate have already boiled themselves down to extinction.
Topicality: Please slow down so that I can hear all your arguments and flow all their warrants. The quality of your T arguments is much more important to me––especially if you argue about the precedent the round sets––than how many stock voters you can read. I may prefer teams that offer a clear argument on topicality to those that rely on spreading, however tactically advantages the quickly read arguments may be.
Counter plans: The burden of demonstrating solvency is on the negative. PICs are probably bad for debate. To win on the fifty states counter plan the negative must demonstrate: 1) that it reasonably possible for all fifty states can act in concert within a normal time frame, and 2) that the fifty states acting together is not simply the federal government taking action. Otherwise, I am convinced that the fifty states counter plan is a cancer.
Conditionality: One conditional advocacy isn't a problem, and two or even three are probably fine, but at four or more I'll start to wonder what you are doing with them all.
For rookie/novice debaters:
If you're reading this, then you're already a step ahead and thinking about the skills you will need to be building for JV and varsity debate. What I want to see most in rookie/novice debates is that teams are flowing and clearly responding to each other.
I'm down - but don't assume I'll vote neg just because you go for it. Have debated on both sides throughout my career.
Procedural fairness can be a thing if explained well.
I'm more familiar with traditional Ks (Neolib, Security, the works), identity-based Ks, and other structuralism Ks. But everyone should be explaining things anyways.
Love em more.
Don't have preferences on theory. Slow down a little from your top speed, especially if you think it will matter at the end of the round.
I'll judge kick if you say it in cross-ex or the 2NR.
You do you I'm down for any argument that is well done; I have no knowledge on the topic so treat me like a child when explaining stuff. Be respectful to people obv. Put me in the email chain firstname.lastname@example.org
I debated HS for 4 years, policy for the first two, and kinda K for the last two, so I'm familiar with a decent amount of arguments and can handle spreading for the most part. Just be clear on tags and analytics.
Love K debate, go for it. If you're aff, I lean towards T/FW being bad, but only if the aff is related to the topic.
Not super good with high theory but I can handle it. Don't use a ton of jargon or spread too fast cause I'll probably miss/missunderstand something. I'm most familiar with settlerism and anti-blackness. Everything else I have a rough idea. Either way, explain like I'm a child and you'll be good.
Not the biggest fan unless the aff literally makes no sense on the topic. In that case I'm more willinging to vote on it. That doesn't mean I won't vote on it, but just know that I do have a pre-disposition.
I'm tech>truth. Debate well and make smart arguments, you win. Caveat to this is K debate, where I lean truth>tech.
Since I lean tech>truth, make sure to explicitly answer arguments, don't expect me to just cross apply stuff for you or just "get" that argument A answers argument B.
I need comparative analysis for most arguments, otherwise you and your opponent are just speaking at each other, not debating.
I used to be a fairly aggressive debater, so I know the line: don't take being aggressive into being disrespectful.
Zoom prolly makes spreading and everything 10x worse, so don't be shy to slow down a bit so I can catch all your arguments :)
Blue Valley Southwest - 2016-2019
Currently a student at UT Dallas (not debating)
Affiliations - Blue Valley Southwest, Pace
I look angry, but I'm not. Usually.
Email - tedshi09[at]gmail[dot]com
What you're here for - As a judge, I am willing to listen to any argument (barring ethically suspect arguments). It is always possible to persuade me to vote a certain direction, regardless of my ideological alignment. However, like any judge, there are certain arguments that are a little more difficult to persuade me to vote for, and I believe having some insight on how I debated might clear up some confusion. As a debater, I primarily went for right-leaning, policy arguments. All of my affirmatives had a plan text, and the majority of my 2NRs versus policy affs were either a CP and DA, DA and case, or T. On odd occasions, I went for the K, but those never extended beyond the neolib/security scope of things. Versus K-affs, I never had a 2NR that wasn't framework.
Overall - Debate is a competitive research activity. The bounds of that research are confined within a predetermined topic of discussion. This doesn't necessarily mean that the discussions within debate need to be a policy advocating for USFG action, but they should be centered around the words in the resolution.
Topic - My knowledge regarding this year's topic is approximately zero. Unfortunately I can't be involved as much as I'd like with debate these days. If you're smart, you might be able to use my lack of knowledge to steal a ballot.
Framework/K-Affs - I'm unlikely to understand as much as you think I do. Please explain. This doesn't mean read an overview for 4 minutes off your laptop. Like I said above, debate is a competitive research activity. Both the aff and the neg should attempt to reconcile what this means, or offer a more compelling alternative to what debate is.
Ks on the Neg - Like above, your theoretical jargon will likely sound like nonsense. I'm typically very convinced by arguments that prioritize pragmatism over critical evaluation. Letting the affirmative weigh their plan and having links specific to that plan encourages more fair, educational discussion.
Disads - Uniqueness and link arguments are almost never yes/no questions and explaining them as such frustrates me. As a debater, you should be making comparative claims between your evidence and arguments with that of the opposing team.
Counterplans - Advantage counterplans are obviously better if they solve the internal link to the aff's advantage. Its difficult to persuade me that counterplans that subsume the affirmative are theoretically legitimate.
Case - Like you'll see in every other paradigm, this portion of the debate is underutilized, especially by the neg. On the neg, you can really mess with some teams here. Beefy case arguments and impact turns can really throw off 2ac organization and create openings elsewhere. Impact turns are really interesting and often have better evidence quality than most disads.
Topicality - I'm typically more convinced by reasonability than competing interpretations. This argument will require a lot of explanation given my unfamiliarity with the topic.
Theory - Please actually speak slower. I'm the slowest flower I know.
I am Bria (she, her, hers) and add me to the email chain please — email@example.com
- I love judging debates and debates should be enjoyable. With that being said, please be nice to your opponents AND your partner. It is more than okay to be strong while you speak during things like CX, but still be respectful to each other.
- Of course, don’t run anything offensive/inappropriate.
- All I ask speaking wise is for clarity and I will tell you if I need you to speak clearer. Don’t get so caught up in trying go fast if you are no longer clear. I don’t want to have to continuously ask you to be clear.
- I am fine with tag teaming during CX but only under certain circumstances. If it doesn’t fall under these circumstances then, please do not speak if it isn’t your turn.
- If your partner is completely stumped with a question and is saying nothing, then you may speak.
- If your partner is about to say something that may lose the round for you.
- Don’t just rely on cards. With that being said, evidence is great! But your entire block shouldn’t just be reading through cards. I will read through the cards, especially if you keep emphasizing one, but reading off nothing but cards won’t get you the debate no matter how good they are. You should explain why your evidence is better. That comes with really knowing and understanding what your evidence is saying.
- I don’t really like “sneaky” debaters. Here is a scenario to explain what I mean by this. Pretend I am a debater in the round and I have just made my speech doc and I save that one for me. I then make a copy of that speech doc and remove all the analytics, perm texts, counter interns, and stuff like that so the other team will not see my speech doc. Remember, if you are trying to hide stuff from the other team by removing stuff from your speech doc, you are also hiding it from me. :)
- Don’t clip. You never know when I get suspicious of you clipping and when I do, I will watch closely and you don’t want to get caught clipping!!
With everything else, I want you to debate how you want to debate. At the end of the round, I will look at what both teams have presented me and I will make what I believe is the best non-biased decision.
I am currently a varsity debater at Montgomery Bell Academy, where I have debated for 6 years. I spent most of my time as a 2N, but I have been a 2A for the past year.
Neg teams: I am fine with anything you want to read, but I am certainly best for policy teams. I will do my best to set preferences aside and judge anything fairly, but if you want the best shot with me, winning DA, DA+CP, Case Turn, etc. is the most likely way to do it.
Aff teams: I am REALLY not the judge for planless affs. I'll judge it like other arguments, but procedural fairness is an impact, and it outweighs and turns most planless aff impacts. I am totally good with policy affs. Big stick works for me although this topic makes accomplishing that complicated. Soft Left affs are fine too, but PLEASE have a serious framing debate. I have judged too many debates where both sides just leave framing alone, which makes judging them impossible. I suppose if I had to choose one, I would say I prefer Util, but that distinction is so small as to be virtually non-existent. Soft left affs are totally safe with me in the back.
im a senior at grady high school
1 warning for clipping, next offense results in loss with 25 speaks
dont racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, classism... just dont be a bad person
ill say clear if i dont understand what youre saying. ill only be reading evidence when its disputed
give a roadmap (this means tell me the main arguments youll read before your speech)
signpost (this means let me know when you transition to a new argument)
Email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please do things that make sense, flow off the speech not the doc.
Follow debate norms
I do not believe in "bad words" feel free to say whatever you want, but please be respectful.
Be clear, if I cant understand you I wont flow. does not matter if its on the doc or not.
condo = infinite
Fairness is an impact
T is a prior question
If you roast anyone on Alpharetta debate your speaks will be higher.
You do you, and I will do everything to evaluate the round equitably.
HS Policy Debate for 4 years at Marist School
College Policy Debate for 4 years at the University of Michigan
Good for anything and everything as long as it's explained clearly. NGL I think all that Baudrillard and other high theory stuff is pretty w0nky slush but if you can establish a unique link, win FW, or win other parts of the critique, you taking a big W. Just make sure to explain it properly.
Make sure to impact things out -- tell me why those things matter, why they mean you win/the other team loses. I keep argument bias out of the room when I'm judging so if you want to full-send no neg fiat and make it a reason to reject the team and the other team doesn't have an answer, you taking a W.
Condo is probably bad. I don't like tricks and rude stuff. I don't like people beating their opponents down in a disrespectful manner. True champions find a way to win with style, finesse, and some measure of grace. Basically, "say what you mean, and mean what you say" in front of me. Kick outs and shifts are not received well. If you shift your position and the other team catches you, calls you on it, labels it a voter, impacts it, and you do not give that response serious consideration, you will likely be very disappointed when the RFD happens.
I like and am comfortable with crystal clear debaters and crystal-clear rebuttals. I've been focused on my policy teams this year, so I'm not familiar with the LD topic. I think there is still such a thing as an LD topic, although I keep hearing the same positions regardless of the topic a lot, and I guess that's ok. I am open to a lot of different types of discussions, and I'm excited to listen to what you bring to the debate space.
NO MATTER WHAT YOUR ARGUMENT, In a nutshell:
Tell Me What Your Argument Is
Tell Me Why I Should Prefer It
Tell Me Why If I Do Prefer Your Argument Why You Should Then Win The Debate---Some form of Impact Calculus/Weighting Magnitude, Probability and Time Frame-ish args are goods.
If you think you are really winning something, "sit on it" and explain why you win.
Overview: I firmly believe that policy debate is first and foremost a communication activity. Consequently, oral presentation plays a larger factor in my adjudication process than in most decisions in recent years. I focus on the “story” of the debate, but line-byline refutation can be a component of that. Know your order before you announce it. Don't change the order after you announce it. Clearly articulated arguments at any speed can be evaluated. Inarticulate utterings that cannot be understood cannot be evaluated. Especially in online debates. Slow down and be really clear on why you are winning. Be quick, but don't hurry. I will not tolerate rudeness. Cross X is binding. I don’t like “camp games” that steal time. I see you. I can’t guarantee I won’t put the trigger on such nonsense. Keep it to a minimum. If there is a mistake or misunderstanding just apologize. Saying you are sorry is often overlooked. You might clean it up well and still be in the debate. At the very least, you will save yourself low speaks if you make an honest effort to play it smart and on the level.
My paradigm biggies are as follows:
1. I agree that conditionality is "probably" bad. So, its "probably" not a bad idea to speak to this and support reasons why I might or might not vote on this. Don’t just wait to see what I’ll do. As far as just throwing out a bunch of stuff and them dropping it as a strategy---it does not usually go very well. I do not automatically judge kick. I don’t think I judge kick at all. If you run 10 off, then win 10 off that do not contradict each other. Most importantly, be sure that you are clear as crystal even attempting it. When you time skew and then kick out, I am predisposed to vote for the other team, absent compelling reasons why I should not do this. Say what you mean and mean what you say.
2. Topical Counterplans are not OK. If at the end of the round I have been effectively persuaded there are two Affirmative teams, I'll probably vote Affirmative.
3. I prefer not to judge topicality debates. If you're ahead on it, explain to me why it’s important to care about this, or I might not understand why to vote on it.
4. I enjoy case debates. Solidly clear and irrefutably presented and reasonably current inherency evidence could really win a debate. No, really.
5. Kritikal arguments on both AFF and NEG are fine, but pay close attention to the way you communicate your positions (clear and concise!).
6. The topic should be debated, but how you approach the resolution, and how you approach debate generally (content, style, etc.), should be left up to the debaters.
7. If you're Negative, show me how your approach is specific to this Affirmative. Be thoughtful in explaining what a vote for your side means and why I should endorse it. Ask me to vote for your side. Don't completely on-face grant the 1AC in favor of pre-set tangentially related points and expect me to get why that means the Negative wins the debate. Be particularly clear on fairness and why ground is or isn't lost and warrants a decision. These are usually not presented clearly and powerfully. And without why they should matter, I tend to be persuaded by other issues
8. I will appreciate teams who competently deploy arguments from the earlier days of CEDA, such as Justification, Hasty G, etc. I also appreciate when the AFF and NEG teams sit on the correct sides of the room with respect to the judge. Otherwise, I might want to vote for someone but accidentally vote for the wrong team. "Sort of kidding" but I know this has happened to teams and that in my career in the activity, more than one judge thought they voted for a team, when they hadn't. If you're not on the proper side of the room, at least say in your speech which team you represent and why you think your side should win the debate. That is taken for granted a lot. :)
Currently working with Alpharetta, previously worked with Chattahoochee. I debated throughout high school, then at the University of Oklahoma and the University of Central Oklahoma, and am now a member of U of West Georgia debate.
I’m comfortable with all speeds and styles, especially those regarding the k – I’m most familiar with poststructural + positional criticisms, though you should do whatever it is you do best – you can just as easily win with a plan, theory, framework, etc. If you want to test a sneaky new framework strategy, I'll happily adjudicate your chess match; if you're all about the Death K, well, I've done my fair share of that stuff too. Give me your best args and write my ballot. I privilege tech over truth and frequently vote for arguments that contravene my personal beliefs. I judge k affs frequently but this only thickens my belief that they need some relation to the resolution, even if only neg-neg. I thus also believe that the neg, in turn, needs to prove why either A) the aff links to harder to the k than squo does, or B) why that distinction doesn't matter - i.e. how I can vote without presumption and/or L/UQ or why presumption still goes neg, does not exist, sucks, whatever. I am not, personally, keen on the notion that presumption can flip aff, but am willing to entertain the argument and have voted on it when used to exploit a neg weakness.
I flow on paper, if you care. I'll say clear twice and then stop flowing anything incomprehensible. If you begin a speech in unsettling fashion (e.g. giving an inaccurate roadmap or jumping the gun with 400+wpm), I'll act flustered and require a few effervescently dramatic seconds to get my affairs in order. If I'm otherwise not flowing or I'm on the wrong sheet, it's because either you've created a mental backlog of arguments that I'm flowing in retrospect or I'm repackaging your arguments to make them more palatable to my flow, or both.
Some things that frustrate me: excessive rudeness (toward opponents or judges), offensive strategies (racism inevitable/good, for instance), and clipping (zeroes + L = bad time for you). The advent of digital debate brings with it a new and widespread sense of suspicion, and though I will do my best to catch any and all forms of cheating, I ask that debaters remain vigilant for it as well. Also, and I can’t believe I need to write this, please don’t engage in acts of self-harm to win my ballot (you know who you are). Instead, please demonstrate mastery of persuasion, word economy, and 2nr/2ar prescience – teams that reverse-engineer strategies and execute them methodically speech-by-speech impress me the most – a searing cross-ex is, of course, welcome – entertaining and innovative teams will be rewarded with speaker points.
A few final notes: not a huge fan of process counterplans (but I’ll still vote for them), conditionality is pretty good (as is neg fiat), link uniqueness wins k rounds, and maybe, just maybe, go for presumption.
I will listen to most arguments. I have problems with most theory arguments in LD. Topicality is like the death penalty so I proceed with care. I understand policy arguments and kritiks. I flow most of the time. If you have questions about what I think about your arguments you should ask.
I believe debaters should be civil to each other. I would prefer that high school students not use foul language in debates.
I am ok with performance debates. I do believe the teams should engage the topic. If a team chooses not to engage the topic, then I will give the other team leeway to deal with the lack of engagement.
Reverse voting issues do not make sense in most instances.
I am ok with counterplans and disadvantages.
I will vote for the team that makes the most sense at the end of the debate.
Name: Lisa Willoughby
Current Affiliation: Henry W. Grady High School
Conflicts: AUDL teams
Debate Experience: 1 year debating High School 1978-79, Coaching High School 1984-present
How many rounds have you judged in 2012-13: 50, 2013-2014: 45, 2015-2016: 25, 2016-17 15, 2017-2018: 30, 2018-19: 30, 2019-20-10
send evidence e-mail chain to email@example.com
I still view my self as a policy maker unless the debaters specify a different role for my ballot. I love impact comparison between disadvantages and advantages, what Rich Edwards used to call Desirability. I don’t mind the politics disad, but I am open to Kritiks of Politics.
I like Counterplans, especially case specific counterplans. I certainly think that some counterplans are arguably illegitimate; for example, I think that some international counterplans are utopian, and arguably claim advantages beyond the reciprocal scope of the affirmative, and are, therefore, unfair. I think that negatives should offer a solvency advocate for all aspects of their counterplan, and that multi-plank cps are problematic. I think that there are several reasons why consultation counterplans, and the States CP could be unfair. I will not vote unilaterally on any of these theoretical objections; the debaters need to demonstrate for me why a particular counterplan would be unfair.
I have a minor in Philosophy, and love good Kritik debate. Sadly, I have seen a lot of bad Kritik debate. I think that K debaters need to have a strong understanding of the K authors that they embrace. I really want to understand the alternative or the role of my ballot. I have no problem with a K Aff, but am certainly willing to vote on Framework/T against a case that does not have at least a clear advocacy statement that I can understand. I am persuadable on "AFF must be USFG."
I like Topicality, Theory and Framework arguments when they are merited. I want to see fair division of ground or discourse that allows both teams a chance to prepare and be ready to engage the arguments.
I prefer substance to theory; go for the theoretical objections when the abuse is real.
As for style, I love good line-by-line debate. I adore evidence comparison, and argument comparison. I am fairly comfortable with speed, but I like clarity. I have discovered that as I get older, I am very comfortable asking the students to "clear." I enjoy humor; I prefer entertaining cross-examinations to belligerent CX. Warrant your claims with evidence or reasoning.
Ultimately, I demand civility: any rhetoric, language, performance or interactions that demean, dehumanize or trivialize fellow debaters, their arguments or judges would be problematic, and I believe, a voting issue.
An occasional interruption of a partner’s speech or deferring to a more expert partner to answer a CX question is not a problem in my view. Generally only one debater at a time should be speaking. Interruptions of partner speeches or CX that makes one partner merely a ventriloquist for the other are extremely problematic.
Clipping cards is cheating. Quoting authors or evidence out of context, or distorting the original meaning of a text or narrative is both intellectually bankrupt and unfair.
There is no such thing as one ideal form or type of debate. I love the clash of ideas and argumentation. That said, I prefer discourse that is educational, and substantive. I want to walk away from a round, as I often do, feeling reassured that the policy makers, educators, and citizens of the future will seek to do a reasonable and ethical job of running the world.
For Lincoln Douglas debates:
I am "old school" and feel most comfortable in a Value/Criterion Framework, but it is your debate to frame. Because I judge policy frequently, I am comfortable with speed but generally find it is needless. Clarity is paramount. Because of the limited time, I find that I typically err AFF on theoretical objections much more than I would in a policy round.
I believe that any argument that an AFF wants to weigh in the 2AR needs to be in the 1AR. I will vote against new 2AR arguments.
I believe that NEG has an obligation to clash with the AFF. For this reason, a counterplan would only be justified in a round when the AFF argues for a plan; otherwise a counterplan is an argument for the AFF. The NEG must force a decision, and for that reason, I am not fond of what used to be called a 'balance neg.'