35th Annual Stanford Invitational
2021 — Classrooms.Cloud, CA/US
Policy - TOC Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
school affiliation: acorn community high school (Brooklyn NY), NYUDL (new york urban debate league), stuyversant high school (New york, NY)
years debating: 4 years of high school, starting college debate
in a debate round i have done everything from cp and politics to performance
my first highschool topic was aid to south Africa, last one was reduce military (if that matters)
I will vote on whatever arguments win, this means I may vote on anything, it could come down to Counterplan-Disad, Procedurals, Kritiks, Affs with no plan text, to even performance. tell me what your argument is and what the ballot signifies (if it has a meaning)...i.e. policy maker etc...(...)
speaker points: be persuasive and make it interesting thin line between funny and ass hole at times may it be in cross-x or your speech you decide *background music* ...analysis/argumentation (don't lie about reading a hole card if u didn't,don't just read cards and tag~line extend ~_~ ) i will call for evidence if needed and i will hit you wit the world famous "cum on son" lol
impact your arguments (duhh)
Topicality: i like a good t debate, their fun and at times educational, make sure you impact it, and give a correct abuse story...
counter plans: have a good net benefit prove how they solve the case
dis ads: you can run them i vote for anything and am familiar with most scenarios
k: i was a k db8er for the better half of my db8 career so i'm pretty familiar with most k~lit u will read unless its like some deep
nietzsche, zizek, lacan type ish but i get it...and if you explain it give a good story and show alternative solvency i will vote for it...it is also fine if you kick the alt and go for it as a case turn just debate it out...
preformance: i did this too...explain what the round comes down to...i.e. role of the judge/ballot/db8ers...and if their is a form of spill over what this is and means in real world and debate world... block framework lol...and show me why your/this performance is key...may it be a movement or just you expressing your self...i like methodology db8s so if it comes down to the aff and neg being both performance teams be clear on the framework for the round and how your methodology is better and how the other may recreate these forms of oppression you may be speaking about...may it be the deletion of identity or whiteness etc...same things apply if your running a counter~advocacy against a performance team...(*whispers* solvency)...k vs performance rounds same as methodology prove the link and as for the alt prove the solvency... framework vs performance rounds i had a lot of these, boring but fun to see the way they play out depending on interp, vio, impacts and stuff...
framework: any kind is fine...same justification as Topicality...depending on how your spinning framework within a round... *yells* education =)
short & sweet
#swag...have fun...do you...debate =)
JHU '20, Biomedical Engineering
Penn Med MD/PhD '28, Bioengineering
Most of what I know comes from Ani Prabhu and Debnil Sur; they can probably articulate anything I'd say better than I. I guess the big thing is you should do you. I obviously have my biases, and obviously those might (consciously or not) impact the way I weigh certain things; don't really think I can or should dictate what style you debate you use.
Just for background: I debated at Bellarmine in San Jose, CA; travelled on the national circuit my junior and senior year reading mainly kritikal arguments, although at state and NFLs was primarily policy. None of this matters now. I haven't debated since high school, was only minorly involved through undergrad (mainly working with VERY young UDL students and asking Bell alumni for random updates and videos when nostalgia hits); and now in med school, don't really think about debate much at all. All of this just means that my comprehension of speed is probably worse than you might otherwise think, my threshold for explanation is likely higher, and that I'm just as nervous now as a judge as I was as a debater years ago. Oh also - it means that I've developed a genuine appreciation for logical analytic arguments and think they're as and can be more useful/valuable than evidence in many cases.
Be nice. Don't cheat. Have fun.
Damien '20 ---> UC Davis '24
Email Chain: email@example.com
ONLINE DEBATE UPDATE: After judging a good amount of online debates, the biggest issue I have is hearing analytics so I would definitely slow down because I want to get down as much of what you're saying. Also if you have a microphone, I suggest using that because it helps a ton.
Qualifications: I debated four years at Damien. I had some bids, did the online TOC thing, and did kinda well at some national tournaments. I know some stuff about debate and I think I can make a good decision most of the time. By no means am I perfect, but I do my best to understand a multitude of arguments and judge well.
Here are some people whose thoughts have greatly influenced my personal philosophy: Christina Phillips, Mike Shackelford, Jon Sharp, Chris Paredes, Michael Wimsatt, Cade Cottrell, Christian Bato, Kelly Ye
Top Level: I believe that debate is a unique environment where education and competitive prowess intersect. At the end of the day, debate is a competition, but there are obviously important educational benefits in this activity that are intrinsic to the discussion that takes place. I believe that line by line is amazing and cloud clash is rather disappointing. I do not and will never claim to have the best flow, but I do my best to catch every argument. I prioritize tech over truth within reason. Obviously there are some arguments that are just non-starters (i.e. racism good or sexism good etc.), so please don't even try it because you'll just piss me off. Just do you and I will try to adjudicate as objectively as possible.
Here are some specific thoughts I have about some arguments so do with this what you will.
Disadvantages: I love disads. My favorite 2NR in my senior year was the Deterrence DA. 2NRs that create a strong story about the DA and set thresholds for risk analysis are awesome to me. When it comes to politics disads, the most important part is the link because it is the weakest component, logically speaking. The key to winning politics/elections scenarios is painting a picture of how the aff disrupts the process of passing X bill or interfering in voting blocs. Be very clear on the line by line and debating the warrants, not just doing tagline explanations and extensions. I don't like rider DAs and I would like the 1NC shell to make at least some sense.
Impact Turns: I messed with these arguments a lot during my career and I think I know how these debates should work out. I think the most important components of the impact turn is winning a timeframe differential and winning that the world of aff solvency would lead to is substantially worse than the squo (i.e. rapid modernization in China creates a worse war later than one that would happen now).
Counterplans: I'm all about CPs but too often have I had to hear and deal with nonsense process, agent, or consult CPs. I think that a good CP strategy should be well researched and have a solvency advocate for the aff. When it comes to CP theory, most violations are reasons to justify a permutation or call solvency into question and not as a voter. Personally, though, Consult CPs are the most cheating and I have sympathy for affirmative teams that have to deal with them.
Topicality: I don't really know how the community feels about topicality anymore, but it is still one of my favorite 2NRs to give and hear. A good T 2NR consists of good impact work and comparisons of interpretations. Too often do I hear extensions of interps without comparing the models of debate that both interps would provide.
Kritiks: I'm not the most well-read in critical literature, but I know the basics of most Ks. This being said, the burden is on you to explain what your argument is and how it is impacted out. Do not just extend the arg without impacting it out because a nebulous claim about something doesn't mean anything without an impact. A large part of Ks that I have trouble understanding is the alternative because a lot of times, the negative isn't explaining the world/research model of the alt which leaves me confused about its application in the world or in debate. On the converse, the affirmative many times doesn't capitalize on the lack of explanation that the negative has forwarded which means that usually end up assuming that the alt does something to resolve the link offense. Don't be afraid to call out the bad explanation that the other team is giving because odds are if they aren't articulating the arg well, I will be skeptical to agree with their characterization of it. Framework is important and filters how I should evaluate the rest of the debate so prioritize that in your strategies.
Planless Affs: I've never read these in my career, but I understand their utility and structure. I prefer to hear a planless aff that is related to the resolution. I hold both teams to a high standard of clarity and explanation. For the aff, I need to know what the aff does and how the end goal of the 1AC is achieved. For the negative, you need to engage the aff and call solvency into question. Framework is, of course, a good strategy for the negative, but do not think that just because I am unfamiliar with the aff's literature that I am predisposed to vote for you. Stale framework debates are awful and I would like to hear a nuanced strategy that actually makes sense. The aff against framework shouldn't just shotgun DAs to the interp and think that's sufficient. You should focus on your best source of offense and contextualize it to the neg's interpretation and how your model of debate is better/more educational/more ethical.
Condo: I think that up to 3 advocacies are fine for me. Anything more and I am more sympathetic to the aff. Don't get it twisted, if the neg screws up debating condo, I will vote aff.
Feel free to ask me anything before the round. Be respectful and Compete.
**Online update: if my camera is off, i am not there**
I think debate is a game with educational benefits. I will listen to anything, but there are obviously some arguments that are more persuasive than others. i think this is most of what you're looking for:
1. arguments - For me to vote on an argument it must have a claim, warrant, and impact. A claim is an assertion of truth or opinion. A warrant is an analytical connection between data/grounds/evidence and your claim. An impact is the implication of that claim for how I should evaluate the debate. debate is competitive and adversarial, not cooperative. My bias is that debate strategies should be evidence-centric and, at a minimum, rooted in an academic discipline. My bias is that I do not want to consider anything prior to the reading of the 1AC when making my decision.
3. framework - arguments need to be impacted out beyond the word 'fairness' or 'education'. affirmatives do not need to read a plan to win in front of me. however, there should be some connection to the topic. fairness *can be* a terminal impact.
4. critiques - they should have links to the plan or have a coherent story in the context of the advantages. i am less inclined to vote neg for broad criticisms that arent contextualized to the affirmative. a link of omission is not a link. similarly, affirmatives lose debates a lot just because their 2ac is similarly generic and they have no defense of the actual assumptions of the affirmative.
5. counterplans - should likely have solvency advocates but its not a dealbreaker. slow down when explaining tricks in the 2nc.
6. theory - more teams should go for theory more often. negatives should be able to do whatever they want, but affirmatives need to be able to go for theory to keep them honest.
7. topicality - its an evidentiary issue that many people impact poorly. limits, not ground, is the controlling internal link for most T-related impacts. saying 'we lose the [insert argument]' isnt really an impact without an explanation of why that argument is good. good debates make comparative claims between aff/neg opportunities to win relative to fairness.
8. clipping - i sometimes read along with speeches if i think that you are clipping. i will prompt you if i think you are clipping and if i think you are still clipping i will vote against you even if the other team doesnt issue an ethics challenge.
9. 2nr/2ar - there are lots of moving parts in debate. if you disagree with how i approach debate or think about debate differently, you should start your speech with judge instruction that provides an order of operations or helps construct that ballot. teams too often speak in absolute certainties and then forward.
10. keep track of your own time.
unapologetically stolen from brendan bankey's judge philosophy as an addendum because there is no reason to rewrite it:
---"Perm do the counterplan" and "perm do the alt" are claims that are often unaccompanied by warrants. I will not vote for these statements unless the aff explains why they are theoretically legitimate BEFORE the 2AR. I am most likely to vote for these arguments when the aff has 1) a clear model of counterplan/alternative competition AND 2) an explanation for where the
I would prefer that debaters engage arguments instead of finesse their way out of links. This is especially awful when it takes place in clash debates. If you assert your opponent's offense does not apply when it does I will lower your speaker points.
In that vein, it is my bias that if an affirmative team chooses not to say "USFG Should" in the 1AC that they are doing it for competitive reasons. It is, definitionally, self-serving. Self-serving does not mean the aff should lose [or that its bad necessarily], just that they should be more realistic about the function of their 1AC in a competitive activity. If the aff does not say "USFG Should" they are deliberately shifting the point of stasis to other issues that they believe should take priority. It is reciprocal, therefore, for the negative to use any portion of the 1AC as it's jumping off point.
I think that limits, not ground, is the controlling internal link for most T-related impacts. Ground is an expression of the division of affirmative and negative strategies on any given topic. It is rarely an independent impact to T. I hate cross-examination questions about ground. I do not fault teams for being unhelpful to opponents that pose questions in cross-examination using the language of ground. People commonly ask questions about ground to demonstrate to the judge that the aff has not really thought out how their approach to the resolution fosters developed debates. A better, more precise question to ask would be: "What are the win conditions for the negative within your model of competition?"
old judge philosophy wiki that i will leave as a historical artifact:
Me – I debated for both Cate Palczweski and Jacob Thompson. I was the ADoD at UNLV from 2010-2013. I was at Damien High School from 2013-2015. I was at KU from 2015-2018. I am now at College Prep.
Cross-ex is rarely damning on any question. Stop saying that. if the person you are speaking over in cross-ex is your own partner who is also trying to answer the question, you may have a problem. a hilarious problem.
for the love of god can we stop having these moments in cross ex where we say "obviously debate doesnt leave this room when we say the government should do something" in a condescending tone. you sound ridiculous. no one thinks that. literally no one. this is like... the royalty of a straw-person argument.
I like solvency advocates that say what your plan says, impact comparisons, people that are having fun, and milkshakes. I flow. I vote on dropped arguments that I dont believe.
I increasingly find myself protecting negative teams because the 2AR explanation seems too new. So for all of you shady 2ARs out there, you need to hide your newness better. Or, you know, communicate with your partner so that they can help set up your argument(s).
Debate is a world of enthymemes where there is a lot of presumption on the part of community in relation to the meaning of the text that you choose to speak. It would be a mistake to not fully explain an argument because you think I "get it." Sometimes that may be the case, but that is by no means a universal truth. Play your game, but make sure I understand what game we are playing at the conclusion of the debate. E.g. If you thought an evidence comparison should have gone differently than my RFD, it is probably your fault. Debate is a communicative activity, so identifying how I should evaluate your evidence / their evidence is... important.
I think debate is a game. This probably makes me evaluate debate differently. I will listen to anything I guess. If you think an argument is stupid, I would assume that you can easily defeat said argument. These are my thoughts, but keep in mind I will not just insert these things into the debate. That is your job. I have front loaded the philosophy with the things that you are most likely here to read. Without further ado:
Clipping - in many respects I think that prompts for clarity are interventionist. However, clipping is rampant, particularly during the 1AC. if I think that you are clipping, I will say clear. If it becomes a problem, I will prompt you with something to the effect of "read all of the highlighting." If I think that you are still clipping after this prompt, I will vote against you.
Buzzwords – stop it. If you cannot explain the argument, then that dog wont hunt. Also, I would really appreciate it if people would stop saying 'sure' prior to answering questions.
Critiques – An Aff will probably lose if they read generic answers and: don’t apply them to the criticism and don’t apply them to the affirmative. The more topic specific the K the better. The negative needs to win either that you 1) solve the aff 2) outweigh the aff [in those weird method v method debates] 3) have a framework or theory that makes the aff irrelevant. I dig the impact turn (imperialism good, Fox News) but also understand that these are probably more links to the critique. I find that lots of high end theory does not make sense when it is reduced to a blurb in the debate. method v method might be a top 5 worse argument in debate next to aspec.
"non-plan affs" – That word probably bastardizes your argument but I don't have a great alternate label that people can find in a quick search through judge philosophies. These are my predispositions. If you can address them, I'm all yours (but even if you don't, you should not worry. It seems to impact the debate less and less because you are answering generic blocks with specific arguments about your method.):
First, "role of the ballot" is over-used and rarely explained as a concept. Please do not assume that you will win just because you said it. Second, my understanding of the "policy debate good" literature means if I don't understand by your last speech, I will vote on a coherent framework argument. This is becoming less and less true because people are so afraid to say limits that they just say "you killed my decision-making" and decide thats sufficient for an impact. Third, these types of arguments typically mean the other team is forced to defend the community practices and not their own. At times I think this is a straw person argument, but I have become increasingly aware that this is not as artificial as I used to think. Fourth, teams tend to hilariously mishandle form arguments and generally lack a coherent strategy on the neg when answering these affs. Most of the time, every argument is a different way to say "you gotta have a plan." Even if the arguments sound distinct in the 1NC, they usually aren't by the 2NR. Rather than focusing on what you have prewritten, you should exploit these problems in the neg strategy. I end up voting for critical teams quite a bit because of this strategic problem even though i firmly believe in the pedagogical value of affirmatives being germane to the resolution.
Framework - "a discussion of the topic rather than a topical discussion" is not a good counter-interpretation. the limits disad is real.
Topicality – T is not genocidal unless the argument is dropped. I evaluate it like a disad so you should impact out arguments beyond words like "fairness" or "education". topicality is an evidentiary issue
Theory – You should go for theory because teams dont know how to answer it. The more counterplans there are, the more sympathetic I become to theory. that being said, its hard to be negative and the neg can do whatever they want. My threshold for theory other than conditionality is somewhat high as a reason to reject the team.
Disads - do people even read judge philosophies for this anymore? Don't bury me in cards. You may not like the outcome. Explanation of 1 really good card is better than 5 bad cards. The politics disad is a thing and so are other disads. i cut a lot of politics updates.
Counterplans - should have solvency advocates and should exploit generic link chains in aff advantages. The idea that a counterplan needs a card specific to the aff is not a deal breaker. Affs should probably read CP texts... they often times fiat out of your solvency deficits. what happened to 2nc counterplans?
Case Debate - These should be a thing. Ideally, there should be more than just generic impact defense. Otherwise, you will probably lose to specificity. People should impact turn.... everything.
Lexington High School 2020 - Went to the TOC
Cornell University 2024 - Currently debating
Add me onto the chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Update for Michigan - I don't know much about the High School topic. Please be aware of that when you might be going in-depth on CJR stuff.
I have ran nearly every argument that has existed on all spectrums throughout my four years of high school debate and a little bit of college debate. My goal as a judge is to evaluate any arguments that the debaters are comfortable running with as little intervention as possible. It goes without saying that racism, sexism, homophobia etc. are all unacceptable.
TLDR - I'm fine for anything. My personal preferences can easily be swayed by good debating.
Top issue - Framing arguments are the most important arguments in any debate. The team that does the best framing is likely going to win my ballot.
Policy Throwdown - I know a bit about government and politics, a little less so about international relations. Even so, try to be clear about which legislation or test case the argument is about, as well as clarify acronyms. I won't default to judge-kick if you don't explicitly mention it in the 2NR. Creating quantifiable impacts to solvency deficits against CPs will be extremely effective. I also really like sufficiency framing on CPs against soft-left affs. Please slow down on technical arguments like theory or CP competition (especially in online debate). Condo is probably okay but don't try to come close to my record (20 off).
T vs Policy Affs - Make numbers or percents really clear on the “we meet” debate, especially on quantitative definitions like “substantial.” Nuanced impact calc is super important, but also call out the internal links that the other team’s interpretation actually accesses. In terms of definitions proper, I think things like intent to define/exclude are important as well, but try to clarify as much legal jargon as possible. The TVA in these debates are super underrated.
K vs Policy Affs - There are cool tricks on both sides that I enjoy. A link that is to the action of the plan is very good, but all arguments need to be impacted. The way links are framed is probably the most important part of the debate, and generally leads to good debates. However, framework debates about epistemology can be just as effective if impacted well.
FW vs K affs - Fairness can be a good impact, but needs to be explained well. The more nuanced explanation of the impact, the more likely I am to vote for it. TVAs or other arguments that act as defense to the aff's impacts are useful. I tend to see that K affs lose when they make their impact turns to framework super small, as opposed to potentially connecting their impacts to a larger theory of power. The best impact turns to framework tend to have really good framing issues behind them. Counter-interpretations also have merit, and I think that there are a few interesting ones that could be strategic (your interp + our aff is NOT one of them). I also think other topicality violations beyond just "USfg" against K affs can be strategic as well.
Rev v Rev - Make the role of the judge and the role of the ballot really explicit. Presumption can be really convincing, especially by calling out double turns. I like scholarship consistency, but amalgamating strategies can be interesting. Other than that, I find that theory of power explanations that use less buzzwords and more application are more successful at winning their side of the debate when it comes to things like permutations and links. The less I understand the aff/alternative, the more frustrated I will be.
CP and/or DA vs K affs - Super underrated strategy. Certain well-researched CPs and smart DAs that impact turn the thesis of certain K affs can catch people off guard.
Other things - Debate is a speech activity, so I would prefer if you read rehighlighted evidence as opposed to just inserting them on the email chain. Especially for online debate, I have found that it is worth sacrificing speed for clarity. I will say "clear" twice and that's it. I would prefer to minimize the amount of time wasted in debates as much as possible when it comes to prep time. If I think you deserve to break, I'll probably give you at least a 28.8. Open source AND cites gets +.2 speaks if you bring it up.
Judge Evaluation Form - Fill this out to comment on my judging!
Here is my email for the email chain:
Here is my short biography for you to know who I am:
Hi, my name is William. I am currently a doctoral student in the German department at NYU. I am familiar with a number of debate authors and have taken classes with and work with people like slavoj zizek, avital ronell, fred moten, etc.
As for debate experience, I used to debate for CUNY debate in college for 4 years, reading critical arguments in the Northeast. I won a handful of regional tournaments and broke at CEDA. I also coach for Brooklyn Technical High School (sometimes we sign up at Brooklyn Independent). I have been coaching there for 8 years and have had my debaters make it far in national tournaments as well as qualify for the TOC four times. Because I work with Brooklyn Tech (a UDL school), I am also connected to the NYCUDL.
Here is the start of my paradigm:
As everyone else says, rule of thumb: DO WHAT YOU’RE GOOD AT
Whether your go-to strat is to throw stuff at the wall and hope it sticks, a straight up disad/cp, or a one-off K; I will be more than happy to judge your round…
given that you:
1) Have a claim, warrant, and impact to every argument. It isn’t an argument absent these three elements, and I will have trouble/not be able to/want to adjudicate what you’ve said.
2) Make sure, on that note to properly explain your positions, don’t make an assumption that I know your DA scenario (perhaps fill me in on the internal work), or K jargon. Maybe i haven't judged that many rounds this topic and don't understand abbreviations right away - help me out.
3) Have comparative analysis of evidence, arguments, and preformative styles as it compares to your own and how I ought toprioritize impacts as it relates to your framing of the round.
4) Be Persuasive, it will go a long way to making me to sign my ballot your way if you can make the round enjoyable, touching, funny, etc – it will also help your speaks.
5) Write the ballot for me in your 2nr/2ar, tell me how you win. Take risks, and don’t go for everything. Make me think, “woah, cool, gonna vote on that” “What they said in the last rebuttal was exactly how I prioritized stuff too, judging is soooo easy [it's often not :(]"
As for some nitty gritty details:
1) I love a good K or performance debate but absent the four points above, I won’t “hack” for your position. For instance, saying racism bad without analysis towards your opponent’s position (warrant comparison) won’t get you very far in the debate. I will very often sympathize with you, as my personal debate career revolves around the K more than often, but I will NOT do the work for you.
2) I love smart, strategic CPs
3) I love absurd, creative arguments – unlike most judges (don’t get too carried away), I enjoy inventive and properly executed arguments whether they be freshly cut CPs like above, or criticisms that challenge debate structures. Reading poems, speaking babble, and “mirroring” your opponents etc, are things I will not immediately hate, just again, PROPERLY execute it. On that note, if you are a victim of some babbly criticism, please go for framework
4) Go for theory cheap shots in front of me, just do it persuasively. In-round abuse stories help, pre-empt your opponents final speech, and close the doors
5) Go for T in front of me – A good T debate that that includes a discussion on how the topic should be limited, what the value of a particular interp is, and how judges ought to evaluate an interpretation is something I find enjoyable. Just as always, be persuasive!
6) Have case debates – forcing your opponents to debate their case position with specific, smart arguments will always go a long way. Even if it is only defensive, mitigating offense will go a long way, and often throws people off balance. I find there to be a striking lack of case debate from my experience, and would be more than happy to judge more of it
Also, some other things:
1) I will default to competing interpretations and body counts unless alternative mechanisms of evaluating the round or alternative impacts are introduced and analyzed in opposition to bodies in a debate. For instance, I will presume nukes hurt, unless you tell me death isn’t an impact and why
2) I will avoid looking at evidence, unless there is a dispute over evidence in a round or a debater spins it as part of being persuasive
3) I am an open minded judge, and respect all “realms” of debate, though of course, I will always already have some bias, I will do my best to mitigate it.
Updated for TOC April 2021
The 30 second version: Read what you want. I have an okay breadth of knowledge of things in the world but will reward you for making it clear you have depth of knowledge. I'd recommend you read the section below on the arg you wanna go for. I will vote for theory and T. Smart DA / CP strats are fun. I judge a lot of policy v. K rounds and would appreciate if K folks would ground more in the literature and make more content args than K trick args. Fairness can be an impact but you must win debate is a game. K affs probably need to win debate is not just a game / impact turns to FW outweigh the value or truth of game framing. Write my RFD for me at the top of your 2NR / 2AR, but make args instead of grandstanding about how you're winning - you did it right if I repeat your words back to you in my RFD. Impact framing is a powerful tool. Cost benefit analysis is inevitable but it's your job to convince me how the round's cost benefit analysis should look.
Would appreciate if you add me to the email chain in advance - just let me know that you did so.
Email: larry [dot] dang2018 [at] gmail [dot] com
I care quite a bit about being a good judge, but only if you're clearly here to bring your A-game. Do what you will with that information.
*In case this ever matters, this is a policy paradigm*
Read whatever you want - I really do mean it. As humans tend to do, I have my predispositions. They are evident in the rest of my paradigm, which I worked to make very clear on my positions. However, I like to believe that I am a fair judge who can evaluate whatever style of argument you bring to the table, be it very policy, very K, or something new altogether. With that said, see the two paragraphs below.
I seem to end up judging a lot of policy v. K debates and end up voting policy more than K. I think that as a big fan of critical literature and as someone who reads a lot, I have a high bar for explanation and content-based argumentation. I will vote for but am pretty tired of K tricks on framework or supposedly using sweeping claims to skirt points of clash. I like voting for smart K explanations, so if you're a K debater disappointed to hear about my voting for policy args more often, same here. By all means, I hope you can turn that record around, but by no means will I "hack for the K." Shallow K args make me mad and I won't reward it. One problem I feel like I see often is that K args don't become complete and coherent strategies by the end of the round cos the pieces are not tied together - don't let this happen. It seems like a missing the forest for the trees kind of issue.
I also seem to vote aff more often than I vote neg on this topic. I think that aff side bias is very real on this topic, and a lot of the aff literature is on the side of truth. T is a viable option in front of me, especially on this topic, and a good T debate will be rewarded in your speaks. I very much enjoy good neg args on this topic, but I just think it's an uphill (but winnable) battle in most cases.
You will benefit from reading the section of my paradigm on the arguments you plan to execute in front of me. I explain how I think arguments are best won. With that said, my suggestions are functional in nature. You should do what you do best. I will reward you for being smart, strategic, and hard-working.
*I'm really tired of plan texts on this topic being legally incorrect or overly vague. I will bump your speaks by 0.2 if you make and go for a smart plan flaw argument (probably in conjunction with another arg, either plan flaw as a reason why your DA/CP/K explanation is true or plan flaw to implicate a T debate).
Framing This Paradigm
I believe that reading paradigms is less a practice of learning how judges view specific arguments and more a practice of learning different ways to execute arguments. My debate knowledge has increased exponentially from reading paradigms, and I write this with that frame in mind.
A Note for the CJR Topic
I think that every argument on this topic fundamentally must ask itself what makes a criminal/crime, denotationally, legally, sociologically, psychologically. It must also ask itself what the role of the law is in the process of achieving justice and whom that justice serves. These two issues should be at the crux of any good discussion and debate about criminal justice, either implicitly or explicitly. I believe it will make you a much better scholar to take some time to critically think through all your arguments through these two lenses.
Head-Royce 2018, Harvard 2022 Sociology and Global Health
I debated on the national policy circuit in high school and did decently well by traditional standards (blah blah TOC blah blah bids). Most of the arguments I read were critiques, on the AFF and the NEG, though I engaged with more traditional policy arguments a fair amount at camp and now in my time coaching. I believe that traditional policy genuinely has value - it just wasn't my focus as a debater. The Ks I read in rounds were mostly about capitalism, neoliberalism, sovereignty, biopolitics, critical security studies, and psychoanalysis. The K arguments I coach now are mostly in the vein of critical race theory and postmodernism. I have a good working knowledge of other common K authors/lit bases in debate like Baudrillard, Deleuze, queer pessimism, other queer theory, Spanos, critiques of death, disability studies, feminist critiques, and the likes. However, you should never take any of this as an excuse for lackluster explanation - shallow K debates are a big sad. All in all, do what you do best. That'll make for the best and most enjoyable debate.
Tech over truth - answer arguments and don’t drop stuff. However, what constitutes tech is up for debate. There are many different ways to be a skilled and technical debater that isn't always just following the line by line religiously or forcing opponents to drop an argument. Smart framing claims and innovative arguments can go a long way. With that said, please do try to do line by line when appropriate - it's not the only way to debate, but it definitely is an effective way that is tried and true. A few more quick thoughts.
Execution probably matters more than evidence, but good evidence/cards goes a long way + helps speaks.
Don't cheat - no clipping cards, falsifying evidence, or stealing prep.
Achieving 0% risk is difficult but not impossible.
Voting NEG on presumption exists - some AFFs don't say anything.
Cross-ex is binding - I will listen and flow notable parts.
Do some impact framing at the top of every final rebuttal.
Be kind to one another and by all means don't be bigoted.
I read K AFFs for most of high school, so they're generally what you might call my forte. Some thoughts:
- A lot of K AFFs don't seem to in any way clearly do anything. Please make sure the 2AR (and the rest of AFF speeches) does not forget to explain the AFF. It becomes hard to vote AFF when I don't know what I'm voting for, even if you did everything else right. Utilize CX to bring up examples that will concretize your method.
- When answering framework, make sure that you have a justification for why your K AFF must exist in debate. Even if you have forwarded a generally good idea, framework begs the question not of whether the K AFF should exist in general but why it should be presented in round. Make arguments about how your K AFF interacts with the status quo of debate arguments, or how debate is a platform, or how argumentative spaces are key. I think the easiest way to do this is usually to impact turn the notion of framework, which I'll note is different from impact turning limits.
- When answering Ks of your AFF, the winner will usually be the team who can concretize their argument better. Don't forget that. Keep it simple and keep it real. Don't get bogged down in theory.
Despite having read K AFFs most of high school and coaching K AFFs most of the time currently, I also read and really like framework. In many ways, I do believe it makes the game work.
- Some general agreement about what debate constitutes is probably necessary for debate to function, even with K debates. Your job reading FW is to convince the judge that that agreement should be the resolution. Don't forget that FW is T-USFG. You are fundamentally arguing for a model of debate, with limits that provides teams the ability to predict and prepare for arguments. You forward a way to organize a game. Don't let a K team force you into defending more than you need to.
- Game framing is very helpful in FW rounds. If you can win that debate is a game, then you hedge back against most of the offense the AFF will go for. You can best prove that debate is a game by giving empirics about the way that all debaters shift arguments to get a competitive advantage. Present the question of why the K AFF needs to occur in debate and strategically concede aspects of how the K literature might be useful while making it clear that that literature can be accessed outside of debate while your impacts to FW, such as policy education and advocacy skills, are best accessed in debate.
- There was a time when I think I had a decent predisposition against going for fairness as the only impact to framework, but I've since amended my belief to being that going for fairness alone is difficult but when done successfully is usually very dangerous and impressive. A few thoughts on how to make it good: 1) Win that debate is a game and that we do not become intrinsically tied to arguments in debate - make a game theory argument about the nature of competition. 2) Force the aff to make arguments about the value of the ballot. If the K team says they think the ballot is good, then they are in one way or another arguing that fairness in debate is somewhat necessary insofar as fairness maintains the value of the ballot. 3) Use #1 to then force the burden onto the aff to describe when fairness is good and bad, once you've pigeonholed them into defending that some fairness must be good. 4) Defend a dogma/switch side argument as offensive defense - I phrase it that way because I think dogma is a great way to internal link turn K affs without giving them education offense to impact turn (since the education offense then makes debate at least in some capacity more than a game / risks indicating that debate changes subjectivity).
- Go for your preferred FW impacts. Some will work better than others against different types of K AFFs, and I have some thoughts about that as a coach but enjoy hearing different takes on framework.
Do your thing. I think this is pretty straightforward. I will say, I'm not the biggest fan of when teams have a million impact scenarios and very little explanation of the AFF's solvency mechanism. I think that's a pretty abusive use of the tech over truth framing in debate, and I will in that instance grant the neg a chance to use framing to get their way (and vice versa with the neg reading a million off). With that said, I'll listen to what you have to say.
I read Ks for most of my high school debate career. I think that they're a great way to think about the world and deepen our understandings of the world and problematize the mundane. Some thoughts on how to effectively execute.
- See paragraph 3 of the overview section of this paradigm.
- Overviews are good but not to be abused aka don't forget about line by line.
- The alt is usually the weakest part of the K, so I often find it effective to do things like take the link debate and make turns case arguments. These make the threshold for winning alt solvency much lower. Things about how your systemic critique complicates the way the AFF can solve or makes the AFF do more harm than good are very effective.
- The framework debate on the K is important - you should use it to your advantage to shift how the judge analyzes the round. Don't just throw it out there. You can use framework to make the judge think more deeply about whether or not it is ethical to take a policy action even if it solves the AFF's impacts, or you can use framework to have the judge consider implementation complications (e.g. the Trump regime) that the AFF doesn't factor in because of fiat.
The biggest mistake NEGs make going for T is forgetting that at the end of the day, the impact debate is always still the most important, even with a procedural. Give me strong T impacts, limits and ground arguments that internal link to fairness and education - you can't win without it, even if you win that they violate and your interp is more predictable or precise.
I like to think about the meaning of the topic and what different models of the resolution look like. I'm okay with throwaway T 1NCs, but don't throw it away when there's opportunity. T can be a very good argument, as long as you remember to keep the impact debate in mind. Different models of the topic have different effects on people's education and fairness of debates. It's not sufficient to prove the AFF doesn't meet your interpretation.
I like to hear nuanced DA debates, especially when they're contextualized well to the AFF's mechanism. Just don't take for granted the amount to which policy debaters are used to the idea that proving a link to the DA makes the DA true. At least make an attempt to explain the internal link between your link story and the impact scenario. Otherwise, I think this is an easy avenue for the AFF to win a no risk of DA argument.
Like with DAs, I really enjoy when CPs are related to the AFF's literature/mechanism. I will reward with speaker points a well-researched DA/CP strategy. Don't forget that in the 2NR, the CP is just a way for you to lower the threshold of DA/internal offense that you need to win. The CP is a very effective strategy, but it is not the offense that wins the debate.
Use theory against abusive CPs when you're AFF - I will take it into account. For the NEG, read smart CPs or be prepared to defend against theory. It will favor the NEG if a CP is maybe abusive (process, PIC, agent, etc.) but is core controversy in the literature.
I am willing to vote for theory to reject the team. Theory arguments with claims about how the violation specifically engages with the topic literature are especially convincing. My threshold to reject the team is high but winnable and I enjoy theory when it's done well. Don't forget to go for reject the arg strategically when things are really cheaty. Impact out reject the team and reject the arg differently when theory is a big part of the debate strategy.
Maybe this is a hot take, but my default assumption is that the status quo is always an option. Unless the 2AR tells me no judge kick / vote aff on presumption explicitly (and all the 2AR has to do is assert this - I’ll change my assumption if you tell me to assuming the 2NR has not made an issue of this), then my paradigm for evaluation involves judge kick, cos I think that just means the neg proved the status quo is better than the aff, and that’s enough for me to vote neg even if there was a CP and that CP doesn’t do anything.
I like conditionality debates.
I consider 28.5 to be about decently average (not a bad thing). If it helps for context, I debated from 2014 to 2018, so that's my frame of reference for points. I follow this guide pretty religiously. Here's a breakdown:
29.7-30: You are one of the best speakers I've ever seen
29.3-29.6: You should get a speaker award, and I'm really quite impressed
28.9-29.2: You gave some really good speeches and maybe deserve a speaker award
28.7-28.8: You are a decently good speaker, are above average, and have a fair shot at breaking
28.3-28.6: You are probably squarely in the lower middle to middle of the pool (standard for circuit bid tournament)
27.8-28.2: This pool is probably tough for you, but you're getting there - keep trying!
27-27.7: This tournament was/is probably going to be rough for you, but don't give up!
Below 27: You almost certainly did something offensive to deserve this
Ways to increase speaks: have organized speeches, be friendly in round, have good evidence, know what your evidence says, be effective in cross ex, be funny (but don't force it)
Ways to decrease speaks: have disorganized speeches, be mean, make it clear that you are reading blocks you don't really get, treat the debate as a joke (don't waste our time)
Ways to get a 0 (or a 20 since that's usually the minimum): be blatantly racist, sexist, ableist, homophobic, or generally bigoted towards your opponents or people in the round in any way
Don't forget to have fun in debate. Good luck! :)
My pronouns are they/he. I did policy for four years at Isidore Newman High School. I'm currently a freshman at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, majoring in computer engineering and minoring in physics. I currently compete in Parli, but in high school I read mostly policy and soft left affs, and on the neg I mostly read Kritiks, Disads, and Counterplans.
I don’t have any knowledge of the CJR topic, UNLV will be my first time judging this year, so please explain acronyms and important concepts.
I try to be as tech over truth as possible and a dropped argument is always true, but the effort you need to expend to disprove an argument inversely scales with how ridiculous and untruthful it is.
Speed should be fine, but it’s also been a bit since I’ve done policy. I’m pretty generous with saying “clear” if I can’t understand you, you shouldn’t be punished just because I haven’t done policy in a while.
I love a really good case debate, and I think neg teams often underutilize and see the case page as a wash/ assume the aff gets 100% solvency. Having case arguments specific to their particular 1AC both takes away aff solvency, but also leads to better clash which I generally reward with speaker points.
Case turns were one of my favorite arguments in policy but I don’t see them very often. I think they can be a very viable path to victory and I think aff teams underprioritize them in the 2AC. Turns specific to the aff are best, but generic impact turns like dedev or wipeout can also be strategic.
I think there are many rounds where the aff can get out of lots of arguments on other sheets of paper using strategic concessions on case, and if you do that I will be very happy because it shows you are paying attention.
I didn’t run K affs in highschool, and I generally think the affirmative team should defend a topical plan. That doesn’t mean I will not vote for K affs, or that you shouldn’t read them in front of me. You simply need to win the framework page and prove why your model of debate is better than the negs interpretation, and still provides the neg with some ground.
I prefer to hear kritiks and counterplans against K affs, because I think it leads to a better debate that isn’t just a repeat of every other K aff vs framework round. If framework is what you are best at reading then please don’t let me discourage you, I understand the strategic necessity of the argument and have read it before. Just be sure to still have arguments on case, because it is going to be really hard to vote for you framework argument if you haven’t contested the fact that the aff solves all racism or whatever.
I liked “cheating” counterplans in highschool, but as a judge I try to be pretty agnostic on theory. I will give you far more leeway on theory if your counterplan is novel and used in an interesting way.
I think kicking planks of multiplank CPs is fine, but it does leave you open to condo.
Aff, please point out what disads each counterplan links to in the 2AC, I’ve been in/ seen way too many rounds where the neg gets away with no linking a cp to the net benefit in rounds where the aff team just assumed the judge knew it linked to the disad.
Disads are good, I don’t really have much to add about preferences. I dislike politics disads and think there is almost always a better and more case specific DA, but if you run a politics disad well I will vote for it.
I like DA turns case arguments, but my pet peeve is people going too far down the internal link chain to get the turn. I guess it is true that nuclear war makes poverty worse, but that’s not really an argument that helps you, everyone already accepts nuclear war is bad if it happens. Instead make the case turn further up the chain, for example “increased militarization leads to more military spending and less on alleviating poverty”, that means you get the case turn even if you don’t prove nuclear war will 100% happen if we do the plan.
I read these a lot, and my areas of interest were security, cap bad, anarchism, biopower, and queerness. I don’t have much experience with the literature of, and arguments behind, most high theory kritiks. If you are going to go for something like Baudrillard please slow down and explain to me and the other team exactly what the argument is. I dislike K teams whose strategy is to spread through dense literature and not explain the argument to the other team. It only works against teams who were probably still going to lose to the K if you just explained it, and all it does is make the round worse for everyone.
Aff teams, you just need to prove your aff is a good idea and the alternative doesn’t solve the advantages put forward by the 1AC, I think people often lose track of this fact, both on the aff and neg.
I think condo is good (within reason), and I’m generally convinced by “reject the argument, not the team” arguments, so apologies, but theory is usually and uphill climb in front of me. That said, I have gone for theory before as a debater, and enjoy a good theory round, so I will not hesitate to pull the trigger on it, it just might take a bit more work in front of me. In general, go for theory if they mishandled the response or if they are being legitimately being abusive in a way that stands out.
Theory can also be strategically used to justify something you did, i.e. “they didn’t specify an actor, we should get multiple conditional worlds to check that back” or whatever. I think this is an underutilized aspect of theory that can win you the round if used right
I like topicality, I ran it a lot in high school. I don’t really have any controversial opinions on the topic, it’s a good argument you should go for if it seems strategic.
Preferred Name “Nae” pls and thx :)
6 bids to the TOC senior year
3x NDT First Round
For Email Chains: email@example.com
Update for 2020-2021 Season:
This is easily one of my favorite high school resolutions I've seen and I'm really excited to see what everyone does. I did not teach at a camp this summer so I am not deep into all of the policy literature for this particular topic but I should be more than fine following along. Most of my preferences are still the same but here are some things I have in mind when thinking about online debate:
- Slow down. Please try to be more extremely clear this year with the way technology can complicate our ability to take in arguments at a high speed.
- Tech difficulties probably inevitable so I'll try to be courteous about giving you all the time to fix technical issues that may arrive. Also, a good tip could be recording your speech when you give it so if the worst comes we can be prepared.
Have Fun! :)
Update for 2019-2020 Season:
So I pretty much only get preffed for K v K debates (probably racist but *shrugs in I get paid regardless*). So for those debates I've found that my ballot is mostly decided on impact calculus in framing. I feel as if you are winning your conception of the world is true than the easiest way to turn that into a ballot in front of me is to turn that conception into how I should be framing the impacts and thus my ballots. Permutations w/ good cards are pretty good and I'm a sucker for them. Also a huge fan of creative/specific PICs the more you are doing to be creative with argumentation the more likely I'm willing to vote for you/reward you with speaker points. On the opposite end seeing affirmatives find creative ways out of these situations is extremely high-rewarding.
For those plan-based teams that either figured out I don't care what I'm voting on and am open to your arguments/for those plane based teams that got stuck with me in elims and are worried I have a bias against you:
- You are wrong
- The best way to win my ballot is proving you have knowledge beyond just your 2AC cards. If you can adequately explain how your world-view can incorporate alternative political formations or if you can just out impact frame/turn the K then we are on the same page. Impact framing debates are fun no matter who does them and I'm not as hard to win heg good in front of as you think.
- When reading framework the only (ONLY) bias I probably have is strategies that rely on 5 minutes of framework in the 2NR without winning a single case argument. The reason being I generally think it means it's hard to figure out how impacts should be weighed so you should either win convincing reasons why the case doesn't matter or convincing reasons why in a world where the other team gets their theory of power you still win.
Updated for Wake 2018:
Reflections from last year: I voted neg a lot of the debates I was in last year and I think it's because I am against the trends of affs just reading a load of cards or offense without ever talking about the 1AC they started the debate with. Neg teams that punish the aff for not extending and weighing it will have a pretty easy time for me in any kind of debate and I think aff teams need to read less cards and do more explaining of their aff and utilizing it in the debate. I also noticed that I am in a place in debate where I just kind of enjoy the competition of it all my ideological bias is pretty much gone unless you saying something that is racist, sexist, homophobic, etc. I voted for cap good last year, a CP + PTX DA against a Baudrillard aff and even more spicy takes so please feel free to do whatever you want in front of me.
Immigration: I REALLY REALLY LIKE THIS TOPIC so much so that I wish it was the college one (@Crimmigration wya?) I will definitely be inclined to award creativity with this topic because I think there are so many ways to discuss Immigration and reduce restrictions but I am also wary that depending on the interp of the topic there are versions of it that are way too big so I feel both sides of the T debate. Do something spicy!
Old Paradigm w/ some edits:
I am a young judge and I am still figuring out my ideas about debate so this paradigm will be an image of what I currently think about the activity. My favorite Judges: Shree Asware, DB, DSRB, Eli Smith, Rosie Valdez, Nicholas Brady, Sheryl Kaczmerick. Here's a list of what I think about certain arguments/ideas.
TLDR: I don't care about what you do just do it well. I can judge the 7 off CP/DA debate or the straight up clash debate. I'm down with speed but will yell "clear" if you're just mumbling. GLHF.
BTW: I make decisions quick it isn't a reflection of y'all I just think debates are usually pretty clear for me. I also have noticed I make a lot of faces and am pretty transparent about how I feel about stuff....take that as you wish.
Tech = Truth- i do believe technical debate is incredibly important to keep the flow ordered and to stop judge intervention BUT only if you are winning the meta-framing of the debate that makes your technical arguments true under your vision of the world. I'm also willing to throw the flow out the debate if compelling arguments are made by the debaters that it's a bad model for how I adjudicate. WARNING: This means you need to have a clear way for me to evaluate the debate absent the flow or I will default to it ie "flow bad" isn't enough.
Theory = Needs an interp not just xx is bad vote them down, but I'm always down to judge a theory debate.
DA- They're fine. I'm capable with judging them and have no problem keeping up with normative policy debate. I enjoy impact turns and I think the most important part of this debate is the impact calc/impact framing. I need reasons why your impact comes first and how it interacts with the other team's impacts. If you're both going for an extinction claim you need to win the probability and timeframe debate with some good evidence.
CP- I enjoy the theory debates here and I think they are important to set precedents for what debate should look like. I lean slightly aff on theory but I think I lean more neg against the permutation if it's well debated out. I think the affirmatives's best bet in front of me is to take out the net benefit unless the CP is just not competitive with the aff. NO JUDGE KICKING THE COUNTERPLAN NO NO NO EITHER GO FOR IT OR DON'T PLS AND THANKS.
K's- this is what I do and i'm most familiar with but this is a double edged sword because it means i expect you to be on point about how you articulate these arguments. Specific links are killer, but generic links applied directly to the aff are just as powerful when warranted. You can kick the alt and go for presumption but that usually requires you winning a heavy impact framing claim. Do your thing and make it interesting debate with your ideas and don't read me your generic Cap blocks (i do enjoy a good cap k though) that have nothing to do with what's going on in the debate. MORE EXAMPLES PLEASE!!!!
K AFF's- non-traditional affirmatives are also my bread and butter. I love how creative these affs can be and the educational benefit that these affs show. Be passionate and care about what you're doing and use your 1AC as a weapon against every negative strategy to garner offense as well as the permutation. Go for nuanced framing arguments and don't be scared of an impact turn. Having Roberto as my partner and Amber Kelsie/Taylor Brough as my coaches has forced me to learn a lot more high theory and I actually enjoy it if done right just know what you're talking about or I will be sad. :(
T - I actually like T against policy aff's a lot if you're gonna normatively affirm the topic you better do it right ;).
FW- this is where I feel like I get pathologized a lot on how I feel. The summer before my senior year my partner and I went for straight-up framework every round with fairness and limits arguments. I think this position run correctly combined with nuanced case engagement with the aff is actually a fantastic argument especially against aff's with weak topic links. I think arguments like dialogue, truth-testing, institutional engagement > fairness, limits, ground BECAUSE the latter group of impacts end up being internal links to the prior. There's a TVA to almost everything so get creative, but TVA with a card that applies to the aff is a killer. If you're aff in these debates you should either impact turn everything or have a model of debate with some clear aff and neg ground. There are a bunch of ways to debate framework but having offense is the key to winning any of those strategies. ALSO DON'T FORGET THE AFF. YOU WROTE IT FOR A REASON EXTEND IT EVERYWHERE.
SIDE NOTE: All pettiness and shade is invited if you make me laugh or throw a quick jab of quirky shade at the other team I will probably up your speaks. If you make fun of Roberto (my partner) I will up your speaks. Also, Naruto/Bleach/My Hero Academia references will be rewarded.
OTHER SIDE NOTE: I grow increasingly tired of people yelling at eachother in CX and the trend of white cis-men constantly interrupting and talking over black folk/poc/women/queer/trans folk. If you do this I will probably be less inclined to care about whatever you say in CX and I may slightly punish your speaks.
Anything racist, homophobic, sexist, etc. will cause me to stop the round and move on with my life
Everything is a performance.You can hmu on my email at the top for any questions. Good Luck!
Assistant Director of Speech and Debate at Presentation High School and Public Admin phd student. I debated policy, traditional ld and pfd in high school (4 years) and in college at KU (5 years). Since 2015 I've been assistant coaching debate at KU. Before and during that time I've also been coaching high school (policy primarily) at local and nationally competitive programs.
Familiar with wide variety of critical literature and philosophy and public policy and political theory. Coached a swath of debaters centering critical argumentation and policy research. Judge a reasonable amount of debates in college/hs and usually worked at some camp/begun research on both topics in the summer. That said please don't assume I know your specific thing. Explain acronyms, nuance and important distinctions for your AFF and NEG arguments.
The flow matters. Tech and Truth matter. I obvi will read cards but your spin is way more important.
I think that affs should be topical. What "TOPICAL" means is determined by the debate. I think it's important for people to innovate and find new and creative ways to interpret the topic. I think that the topic is an important stasis that aff's should engage. I default to competing interpretations - meaning that you are better off reading some kind of counter interpretation (of terms, debate, whatever) than not.
I think Aff's should advocate doing something - like a plan or advocacy text is nice but not necessary - but I am of the mind that affirmative's should depart from the status quo.
Framework is fine. Please impact out your links though and please don't leave me to wade through the offense both teams are winning in that world.
I will vote on theory. I think severance is prolly bad. I typically think conditionality is good for the negative. K's are not cheating (hope noone says that anymore). PICS are good but also maybe not all kinds of PICS so that could be a thing.
I think competition is good. Plan plus debate sucks. I default that comparing two things of which is better depends on an opportunity cost. I am open to teams forwarding an alternative model of competition.
Disads are dope. Link spin can often be more important than the link cards. But
you need a link. I feel like that's agreed upon but you know I'm gone say it anyway.
Just a Kansas girl who loves a good case debate. but seriously, offensive and defensive case args can go a long way with me and generally boosters other parts of the off case strategy.
When extending the K please apply the links to the aff. State links are basic but for some reason really poorly answered a lot of the time so I mean I get it. Links to the mechanism and advantages are spicier. I think that if you're reading a K with an alternative that it should be clear what that alternative does or does not do, solves or turns by the end of the block. I'm sympathetic to predictable 1ar cross applications in a world of a poorly explained alternatives. External offense is nice, please have some.
I acknowledge debate is a public event. I also acknowledge the concerns and material implications of some folks in some spaces as well. I will not be enforcing any recording standards or policing teams to debate "x" way. I want debaters at in all divisions, of all argument proclivities to debate to their best ability, forward their best strategy and answers and do what you do.
Card clipping and cheating is not okay so please don't do it.
NEW YEAR NEW POINT SYSTEM (college) - 28.6-28.9 good, 28.9-29.4 really good, 29.4+ bestest.
This trend of paraphrasing cards in PFD as if you read the whole card = not okay and educationally suspect imo.
Middle/High Schoolers: You smart. You loyal. I appreciate you. And I appreciate you being reasonable to one another in the debate.
I wanna be on the chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sonoma Academy '19
Judges for: Sonoma Academy
Rounds on CJR: 35
Experience: 4 years of national circuit debate, 1 year of national circuit parliamentary debate. I cleared at most national tournaments and won a few local tournaments. I'm currently a sophomore at UCLA. I do not do college debate.
I have been a 2N and 2A and was a double 2.
Add me to the email chain: email@example.com
Online update: Speak around 80% speed than usual and please add your analytics to speech docs in case of internet issues. Lots of teams I've judged are actively stealing prep, so I will be lowering speaks if this becomes an issue in the round. Also, you don't have to turn on your camera during the round, but I would prefer it if you would turn it on during your speech.
Speed is fine, but clarity over speed! If I don't understand what you're saying, I won't flow it. Also please disclose on the wiki. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to make the debate more accessible for you. Emailing me or talking to me before the round totally works.
Do what you do best. Trying to adapt to me as a judge is a waste of time. I don't necessarily have an argumentative preference, but I'm really not gonna enjoy sitting in a high theory k debate.
ask me as many questions before/after the round as you want.
Arguments are claims, warrants, and impacts -- means that "dropped" arguments are true only if you explain why they matter and the reasons they're true. I need more explanation than just "they dropped the DA- we win!"
I'm down to see a good T debate! I think T is vastly underused by 2Ns (including me). If your 1N is a killer T debater, use it to your advantage. Most affs to some extent are untopical, so make them stop cheating. Have a good interp/counter interp and give me some good clash on the standards debate. I don't defer to reasonability or competing interps, so I will be convinced by both.
I've gone for condo twice in my four years of doing debate, and it's still one of my favorite rounds. That being said, if condo is a legit strat for you it should be a big part of the 1AR and all of the 2AR. I will vote on condo, but there has to be in round abuse. If they read states and neolib, I will not be very convinced to vote on condo. And I definitely believe that neg should definitely have condo to test the aff. Other theory args aren't as convincing to me unless the other team completely drops it. That's the only time I might vote on it.
Probably my favorite debate argument. I love a good CP/DA neg start. If the DA turns case and squo solves the aff, neg doesn't really need much of a link to win the round. Especially if they have a sick counterplan. I love any and all DAs.
Also love these. A good advantage CP with a sick DA can be a killer neg strat. But have some good evidence on how and why the CP solves. Usually, 1AC evidence can be used as solvency advocates for ADV CPs! Also, the CP better be competitive, cause then I have no reason to vote for it. Please don't mess up writing CP texts. (It's really embarrassing, speaking from experience).
Yes, most K's are cool and I will definitely still vote on the K even though I'm most familiar with policy arguments. I think Ks are very interesting and probably produce the most real-world change. But if you don't understand your K and can't explain it to your opponents, I will have a VERY hard time voting for it. Have some good links that you can explain. Also, the alt better solve or at least do something. If you can't explain what the alt does and what voting neg does, then please don't read that K. There's nothing more embarrassing than watching a K team not know what they are talking about in cross-ex. What K lit I know well (Cap, Set Col, Gnoseology, Security, Orientalism, Foucault). If you read any authors that start with a B (Bifo, Baudrillard, Battile etc, just don't pref me lol). Bad K debates are worse than bad policy debates.
Do what you do best. Have solvency advocates, win the case solves something.
ok funny enough I’ve voted for more k affs this year than for fw teams. I legit think FW teams have forgotten how to debate T because so many people are just not extending any impacts to the 2NR
Err neg in these debates. FW makes the game work!! I think these debates are interesting to watch, but I think FW is the only real option. This is where my judge bias comes in because I'm more likely to be lenient to neg teams in these debates. Make sure to impact it out. Like why should I prefer aff/neg FW? TVA is the negs best friend in these debates. But all that being said if you debate your k aff well I will DEFINITELY vote on it.
Destroy them on case. Nothing makes the 1AR harder than amazing case debate in the block. circumvention is probably a true arg if you're neg.
also if you're aff - add-ons are your friend and a good way of making neg offense go away - why do I care about disads if you just solve the impact
Don't steal prep. Flashing/emailing isn't prep unless it becomes an issue in the round. If you're very unclear, I will dock your speaks. Please don't clip. That's the last thing I want to deal with. You will lose the round, get a 0 and I will have to have a conversation with your coach. Also please don't make sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic etc. comments. You will lose the round and get a 0. Don't be mean to the other team.
Y'all know me, still the same O.G. but I been low-key
Hated on by most these nigg@s with no cheese, no deals and no G's
No wheels and no keys, no boats, no snowmobiles, and no skis
Mad at me cause I can finally afford to provide my family with groceries
Got a crib with a studio and it's all full of tracks to add to the wall
Full of plaques, hanging up in the office in back of my house like trophies
Did y'all think I'mma let my dough freeze, ho please
You better bow down on both knees, who you think taught you to smoke trees
Who you think brought you the oldies
Eazy-E's, Ice Cubes, and D.O.C's
The Snoop D-O-double-G's
And the group that said motherduck the police
Gave you a tape full of dope beats
To bump when you stroll through in your hood
And when your album sales wasn't doing too good
Who's the Doctor they told you to go see
Y'all better listen up closely, all you nigg@s that said that I turned pop
Or The Firm flopped, y'all are the reason that Dre ain't been getting no sleep
So duck y'all, all of y'all, if y'all don't like me, blow me
Y'all are gonna keep ducking around with me and turn me back to the old me
Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to say
But nothing comes out when they move their lips
Just a bunch of gibberish
And motherduckers act like they forgot about Dre
Recently retired from the debate world but I still privately coach a few select debaters to keep a foot in the water. Experienced former debater. Previous coach for CK McClatchy, Rosemont, Davis Senior, and others. I am the former Executive Director and founder of the Sacramento Urban Debate League (SUDL). I've judged a ton of rounds on all levels of policy debate and feel in-depth and informative verbal RFD's are key to debate education.
I will adapt to you rather than you to me. It's not my place as a judge to exclude or marginalize any sort of argument or framework. On the neg, I will vote for K/K + case, T, CP + DA, DA + case, FW/FW + case, performance, theory.... whatever. I personally prefer hearing a good K or theory debate, not that I'm more inclined to vote on those genres of argumentation. I am down for the K, performance, or topical aff. Anything goes with me.
I'm big on organization. Hit the line by line hard. Don't just give me 3 min overviews or read a bunch of cards off the line, then expect me to conveniently find the best place on the flow for you. Do the work for me. I flow on paper OG style, so don't drop arguments. I don't flow off speech docs (neither should you), but put me on the email chain so I can read cards along with you and refer back to them. I can handle any level of speed, but please be clear and loud if possible.
I will work hard to make the debate accessible and a safe place for you and your arguments. If you have access needs during a debate, wish to inform me of your preferred gender pronoun, or if there is anything you wish to communicate privately, please let me know or send me an email.
My judging philosophy is very short for a reason. Its your debate, not mine. Do you. Just stay organized and tell me where and why to vote. Write my ballot in your 2NR/2AR.
About me: (she/her/hers/ella) Sonoma Academy'19 & Dickinson College '23
I debated all throughout high school on the local and national circuit level. I went to CNDI camp and was a 1A/2N. I did four years of policy and one year of parli. GGSA #1 will be the first tournament I judge this year and exposure to the topic (no camp experience) keep this in mind.
I want to be on the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please feel free to ask me questions before and after the round or just say hello and introduce yourself if you'd like. I want to do what I can to make you feel that the round is an assessable and comfortable space.
Zoom: This format of debate is new to us all that being said it's not an excuse to steal prep or contact others outside the round. Please adhere to the honor code of former debate rounds. Time yourselves please. I will be doing so as well so I will know if you're running over time intentionally for prep.
Speed/Speaks: I am fine with spreading but with the added variable of zoom please go 80% your normal speed. If I can't understand you I won't flow it. I won't interrupt you to say clear, if you see me staring at you or clearly not flowing, adapt. I flow the speech not the doc. Good way to get good speaks from me is to give me clear instructions in the beginning:order, placement, and extension of arguments throughout the speech not just titles and authors. Etiquette to all in the round will also reflect in your speaks. Debate is meant to be a fun and educational space not one to be ungraceful or rude.
Affirmative: You should know your aff like the back of your hand. 1AC I expect you to shine in the CX.
CX: One of my favorite parts of debate itself. I think it is sadly underutilized but it's a key place for speaks to me. I want to see you shine in CX. I'm impartial to tag team just get consent from the other team. Be respectful and try to not talk over one other (no one enjoys seeing a repeat of the 2020 Presidential debate) I believe CX is binding, so be specific and careful.
Case: Case debate is very important. I love seeing it well played out.
Kritiks: I am fine with Ks and K affs. In high school, I leaned towards policy debate. However, I've studied critical theory and am familiar with some lit but again not everything so be very clear. I believe in round solvency and that a key point in the round should be the roll of the ballot and the a well explained alt. I would rather have a mediocre policy round than a bad K debate. Please only read Ks that you are comfortable and knowledgeable in.
CP: I love effective and specific CP/DA combos. Please do an effective block split each should have one speaker dedicated to either or one speaker to both. The first thing I should hear about DAs in any speech is that they outweigh and turn the case. Generic CP/DA combos are fine but you need to really focus on the link to the aff.
Debated for Bronx Science for 4 years (2015-2019) and been judging for three years in college; polsci and public policy major at Hunter College
Feel free to run any argument in front of me. I want you to tell me how to vote and how I should view the round. Besides that, I'm down for anything.
Quarantine edition edit: My connection isn't the best so please send the analytics and/or spread like 5% slower so I can flow it, if the argument isn't on my flow I can't evaluate it ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
Feel free to add me to the email chain: email@example.com
tl;dr: run what you want
I decide rounds pretty quickly so I usually disclose right after the 2AR.
This is more for policy rounds but don't just card-dump, I hate it when teams just spew a bunch of cards at each other and expect me to do all the work.
If I’m on a panel with Eugene Toth there is a literal 100% chance that we will vote the same way.
My paradigm has been greatly influenced by my god-tier debate partner in high school so if you want to give it a look: https://www.tabroom.com/index/paradigm.mhtml?judge_person_id=46818
TKO: If you think you 100% won the round at any point in the debate (i.e. other has no path to a ballot bc of conceded off case, etc.) then you can call a TKO and the round will stop. If I buy that the opponents have no path to the ballot, I will give you the win and 30s. If you are wrong, you will get an L and 25s.
DA should at least have a aff-specific link and not just "Passing criminal justice reform means Trump loses political capital". Make sure impact calc is tight, and good evidence comparison will notch up your speaker points. I want you to tell me a story of how the aff actually triggers the impacts.
Haven't gone for that many CPs, not really my favorite argument. Please slow down for the CP text, especially if it's one of those really long ones. Whatever you run, make sure that you have a clear net-benefit.
Unless its not even in the direction of the topic, I won't automatically vote down an aff because it violates your interpretation of framework and the resolution. If there is no significant impact and there is sufficient response from aff, I will weigh education over fairness.
I like to hear cleverly thought out T arguments against K affs that aren't just USFG, but an explanation, again, is necessary.
I run Ks very often and love a good K debate but I also hate it when the links for the Ks are not explained well or are just generic. Most of the K debate is rooted in the link debate and you have to be able to do this well in order for me to understand how the kritik functions in terms of the affirmative.
A side note: I am not a judge who thinks you need to win the alternative debate in order to win the round. As long as you can prove that each link is a non unique disad to the aff, and those disads outweigh, I will gladly vote neg. However, winning the alternative debate definitely makes your job a LOT easier. If you do go for the alt, I need to know what the alt is supposed to do, how it is supposed to do it, and why what it does matters. You have to be able to explain the alt well, a lot of debaters do not read the literature behind their kritik and this means they cannot explain their alternatives well or just summarize the tags of the cards when explaining the alt.
Love creative K args, topic-specific Ks are really cool too and I've been finding myself voting for more eccentric and high theory Ks so take that as you will
Ks I've ran: Cap (almost every variant of it: logistics, Dean, historical materialism, etc.), academia (Moten and Harney, Tuck and Yang, etc.), ID stuff (set col, queer theory), psychoanalysis.
I have read K affs the majority of my debate career. Love them, they great. But if it is a nontraditional aff, an EXPLANATION is necessary. If I don't understand what the aff is, what it does, or why it's good, then I will absolutely default neg
Have judged a fair amount of theory debates at this point and have voted for condo and ASPEC, so I'm down w it just make sure you have interpretation, violation, and standards esp in the last speech
Been there done that, just don't be reading random files you found in the backfiles or online without knowing what they mean
Put me on the chain - firstname.lastname@example.org
Used to debate for WY; tech > truth.
9/9/20 ---- Less sick of clash debates, but just do it well.
10/10/2019 ---- I am kind of sick of judging clash debates.
Topicality - I have been in a lot of T debates this year - the only thing I want here is good line by line and impacted out standards in the 2nr/2ar (e.g. and aff ground o/ws neg ground -but why?) *** its not a reverse voter issue/its not genocide (dont annoy me)
T-USFG - I hate judging these now but I still have a conscience, I'm just hostile to them - couple things - make the 2ar responses to the 2nr on FW clear, the 1ar is make or break in FW debates for me so beware technical concessions. I don't really have a preference between prioritizing fairness vs education arguments. For the aff in these debates - dont drop SSD, TVA, or a truth testing claim on your scholarship - with minimal mitigation that's an easy neg ballot to write.
Disadvantages - They're lit - do turns case analysis and have a link story (even if its non specific), have an external impact and you're golden. Stupid DAs are fine (ANWR, tradeoff etc), if they read a stupid DA produce an amusing CX from it to showcase the contrived link chain, it'll up your ethos (and your speaks)
Counterplans - Have a competitive counterplan text with a net benefit. I will vote on a CP flaw/whether or not a CP is feasibly possible, I will not judgekick unless I am told to. Theoretically illegit CPs are fine and the theory debate should be done well if you really want me to reject them. Unorthodox CPs are also cool w me - anarchy for example.
Conditionality - Explain it, go for it if you want - I don't consider myself having a high threshold for judging theory, unless condo is dropped it should be at least 45 seconds of the 1ar (if extended) or else I will be less lenient in a 2ar on theory. In the 1ar, if condo is extended in 10 seconds as an afterthought (e.g. YEAH condo ummm its abusive next) that's annoying and I won't vote on that if the 2nr spends 8 seconds there and is marginally less coherent than you.
Kritiks v Policy Affs - I'm down - just tell me the truth about about whether or not I will need a separate sheet for your O/v honestly - I have assuredly seen any K you're going to run in front of me and have a reasonable threshold for voting on K tricks. That being said - Reps are shaped by context I find that incredibly persuasive and useful when evaluating the K v case. In round links/impacts are fine .
--------things that will annoy me in these debates
- Claiming that I should give you leeway because they read a "K trick" a. no BL for a K trick, b. unless you're going for condo with an impact of in round abuse/some other theory arg stop whining to me.
- unresponsive answers to FW that lead to an interventionist decision
- an incoherent link story/alt solvency
- not being able to explain your K in CX
-not Cross applying FW if they read more than one K and instead spending twenty seconds reading the same FW again
-Claiming the role of the aff in debates is to "stfu" - I don't like voting for this model of debate because it is one sided and in debate as a competitive activity engagement is critical - but I can't make that argument for you.
That being said - go read Khirn's reasoning for why he votes for Kritiks most of the time, and what his RFDs look like. I agree with him.
Ks I have written files on/answering/into the lit for - spanos, psycho, cap, communist horizon, security, fem, mao, death cult, berlant, scranton, queerness, set col, *the thing you'll really need to do in high theory debates is be responsive to 2ac answers and break your prewritten block dependency, show me you know what you're doing and I won't use my background knowledge to help you.
Kritiks v K affs - Usually interesting. the RFD will most like be they did/didnt win the perm (that's usually how it goes).
Death Good - I'll vote on it but I'll have a high threshold.
Ethics Violations - Dont clip, it will annoy me. Ethics Violations as pertaining to evidence quality/evidence flaws are not usually a voter (these types of debates will also annoy the shit out of me)- it is not your role to persuade me that it was particularly abusive - if you introduce one of these into the round a. it is make or break - if i determine you're wrong, you lose and that is a decision I will make myself without consideration from either team by reading the ev, b. these are usually accidents and stupid to waste time doing, c. the appropriate thing is to tell the team to correct it and not weaponize it for a strategy - that's a bad model of debate for several reasons and doing so makes you a living representation of a moral hazard.
Impact Turns - They're funny and usually have questionable evidence quality, I think that good impact turn debates are underused and very threatening to a stupid team that reads both an ineq and hard impact adv.
- don't shake my hand, don't try it's weird and i don't like it
- If you drop Antonio I will probably laugh at you.
- I'll vote on a floating PIK
- Dropped Aspec is a dropped ballot (MBA proves)
- There's a brightline between being argumentative and being a prick, everyone loses that line sometimes but it's important to be attentive and paying attention to the responses of your opponents.
- Ill be on the email chain but I usually won't be flowing off of it
- You get two clears - then I stop flowing
- Time your own prep
- do untopical policy things against K teams it is their fault they can't go for T
-counter-fiction/poetry is acceptable
*High speaker points with generally be determined based on how well you take this advice/the frequency at which you make smart logical arguments/the frequency at which your mentality irritates me
Feel free to message me w questions about my RFDs/comments - take notes during the RFD
Current Director of Debate at Westwood High School (Texas)
Update for NPDA: Got into a car accident that damaged my wrist so I'm likely not able to flow at top capacity atm.
Yes, email chain - sohailjouyaATgmailDOTcom
- I appreciate adaptation to my preferences but don’t do anything that would make you uncomfortable. Never feel obligated to compete in a manner that inhibits your ability to be effective. My promise to you will be that I will keep an open mind and assess whatever you chose. In short: do you.
- Truth > Tech. I recognize that debate is not merely a game, but rather a competition that models the world in which we live. This doesn’t mean I believe judges should intervene on the basis of - what it does mean is that embedded clash band the “nexus question” of the round is of more importance than blippy technical oversights between certain sheets of paper.
Don't fret: a dropped argument is still a concession. All I mean is that I likely have a higher threshold for the development of arguments that are more intrinsically dubious.
- As a former coach of a UDL school where many of my debaters make arguments centred on their identity, diversity is a genuine concern. It may play a factor in how I evaluate a round, particularly in debates regarding what’s “best” for the community/activity.
Do you and I’ll do my best to evaluate it but I’m not a tabula rasa and the dogma of debate has me to believe the following. I have put a lot of time and thought into this while attempting to be parsimonious - if you are serious about winning my ballot a careful read would prove to serve you well:
- All speech acts are performances, consequently, debaters should defend their performances including the advocacy, evidence, arguments/positions, interpretations, and representations of said speech acts.
- One of the most annoying questions a judged can be asked: “Are you cool with speed?”
In short: yes. But smart and slow always beats fast and dumb.
I have absolutely no preference on rate of delivery, though I will say it might be smart to slow down a bit on really long tags, advocacy texts, your totally sweet theory/double-bind argument or on overviews that have really nuanced descriptions of the round. My belief is that speed is typically good for debate but please remember that spreading’s true measure is contingent on the number of arguments that are required to be answered by the other team not your WPM.
- Ethos: I used to never really think this mattered at all. To a large degree, it still doesn’t considering I’m unabashedly very flowcentric but I tend to give high speaker points to debaters who performatively express mastery knowledge of the subjects discussed, ability to exercise round vision, assertiveness, and that swank.
- Holistic Approaches: the 2AR/2NR should be largely concerned with two things:
1) provide framing of the round so I can make an evaluation of impacts and the like
2) descriptively instruct me on how to make my decision
Overviews have the potential for great explanatory power, use that time and tactic wisely.
While I put form first, I am of the maxim that “form follows function” – I contend that the reverse would merely produce an aesthetic, a poor formula for argument testing in an intellectually rigorous and competitive activity. In summation: you need to make an argument and defend it.
- The Affirmative ought to be responsive to the topic. This is a pinnacle of my paradigm that is quite broad and includes teams who seek to engage in resistance to the proximate structures that frame the topic. Conversely, this also implicates teams that prioritize social justice - debaters utilizing methodological strategies for best resistance ought to consider their relationship to the topic.
Policy-oriented teams may read that last sentence with glee and K folks may think this is strike-worthy…chill. I do not prescribe to the notion that to be topical is synonymous with being resolutional.
- The Negative’s ground is rooted in the performance of the Affirmative as well as anything based in the resolution. It’s that simple; engage the 1AC if at all possible.
- I view rounds in an offense/defense lens. Many colleagues are contesting the utility of this approach in certain kinds of debate and I’m ruminating about this (see: “Thoughts on Competition”) but I don’t believe this to be a “plan focus” theory and I default to the notion that my decisions require a forced choice between competing performances.
- I will vote on Framework. That means I will vote for the team running the position based on their interpretation, but it also means I’ll vote on offensive responses to the argument. Vindicating an alternative framework is a necessary skill and one that should be possessed by kritikal teams - justifying your form of knowledge production as beneficial in these settings matter.
Framework appeals effectively consist of a normative claim of how debate ought to function. The interpretation should be prescriptive; if you are not comfortable with what the world of debate would look like if your interpretation were universally applied, then you have a bad interpretation. The impact to your argument ought to be derived from your interpretation (yes, I’ve given RFDs where this needed to be said). Furthermore, Topical Version of the Affirmative must specifically explain how the impacts of the 1AC can be achieved, it might be in your best interest to provide a text or point to a few cases that achieve that end. This is especially true if you want to go for external impacts that the 1AC can’t access – but all of this is contingent on a cogent explanation as to why order precedes/is the internal link to justice.
- I am pretty comfortable judging Clash of Civilization debates.
- Framework is the job of the debaters. Epistemology first? Ontology? Sure, but why? Where does performance come into play – should I prioritize a performative disad above the “substance” of a position? Over all of the sheets of paper in the round? These are questions debaters must grapple with and preferably the earlier in the round the better.
- "Framework is how we frame our work" >>>>> "FrAmEwOrK mAkEs ThE gAmE wOrK"
-Presumption is always an option. In my estimation, the 2NR may go for Counterplan OR a Kritik while also giving the judge the option of the status quo. Call it “hypo-testing” or whatever but I believe a rational decision-making paradigm doesn’t doom me to make a single decision between two advocacies, especially when the current status of things is preferable to both. I don't know if I really “judge kick” for you, instead, the 2NR should explain an “even if” route to victory via presumption to allow the 2AR to respond.
“But what about when presumption flips Affirmative?” This is a claim that probably needs to be established prior to the 2NR. While I say that, I've definitely voted in favour of plenty of 2ARs that haven't said that in the 1AR.
- Role of the Ballots ought to invariably allow the 1AC/1NC to be contestable and provide substantial ground to each team. Many teams will make their ROBs self-serving at best, or at worse, tautological. That's because there's a large contingency of teams that think the ROB is an advocacy statement. They are not.
If they fail to equally distribute ground, they are merely impact framing. A good ROB can effectively answer a lot of framework gripes regarding the Affirmative’s pronouncement of an unfalsifiable truth claim.
- Analytics that are logically consistent, well warranted and answer the heart of any argument are weighed in high-esteem. This is especially true if it’s responsive to any combinations of bad argument/evidence.
- My threshold for theory is not particularly high. It’s what you justify, not necessarily what you do. I typically default to competing interpretations, this can be complicated by a team that is able to articulate what reasonability means in the context of the round, otherwise I feel like its interventionist of me to decode what “reasonable” represents. The same is true to a lesser extent with the impacts as well. Rattling off “fairness and education” as loaded concepts that I should just know has a low threshold if the other team can explain the significance of a different voter or a standard that controls the internal link into your impact (also, if you do this: prepared to get impact turned).
I think theory should be strategic and I very much enjoy a good theory debate. Copious amounts of topicality and specification arguments is not strategic, it is desperate.
- I like conditionality probably more so than other judges. As a young’n I got away with a lot of, probably, abusive Negative strategies that relied on conditionality to the maximum (think “multiple worlds and presumption in the 2NR”) mostly because many teams were never particularly good at explaining why this was a problem. If you’re able to do so, great – just don’t expect me to do much of that work for you. I don’t find it particularly difficult for a 2AR to make an objection about how that is bad for debate, thus be warned 2NRs - it's a downhill effort for a 2AR.
Furthermore, I tend to believe the 1NC has the right to test the 1AC from multiple positions.
Thus, Framework along with Cap K or some other kritik is not a functional double turn. The 1NC doesn’t need to be ideologically consistent. However, I have been persuaded in several method debates that there is a performative disadvantage that can be levied against speech acts that are incongruent and self-defeating.
- Probability is the most crucial component of impact calculus with disadvantages. Tradeoffs ought to have a high risk of happening and that question often controls the direction of uniqueness while also accessing the severity of the impact (magnitude).
- Counterplan debates can often get tricky, particularly if they’re PICs. Maybe I’m too simplistic here, but I don’t understand why Affirmatives don’t sit on their solvency deficit claims more. Compartmentalizing why portions of the Affirmative are key can win rounds against CPs. I think this is especially true because I view the Counterplan’s ability to solve the Affirmative to be an opportunity cost with its competitiveness. Take advantage of this “double bind.”
- Case arguments are incredibly underutilized and the dirty little secret here is that I kind of like them. I’m not particularly sentimental for the “good ol’ days” where case debate was the only real option for Negatives (mostly because I was never alive in that era), but I have to admit that debates centred on case are kind of cute and make my chest feel all fuzzy with a nostalgia that I never experienced– kind of like when a frat boy wears a "Reagan/Bush '84" shirt...
I know enough to know that kritiks are not monolithic. I am partial to topic-grounded kritiks and in all reality I find them to be part of a typical decision-making calculus. I tend to be more of a constructivist than a rationalist. Few things frustrate me more than teams who utilize a kritik/answer a kritik in a homogenizing fashion. Not every K requires the ballot as a tool, not every K looks to have an external impact either in the debate community or the world writ larger, not every K criticizes in the same fashion. I suggest teams find out what they are and stick to it, I also think teams should listen and be specifically responsive to the argument they hear rather than rely on a base notion of what the genre of argument implies. The best way to conceptualize these arguments is to think of “kritik” as a verb (to criticize) rather than a noun (a static demonstrative position).
It is no secret that I love many kritiks but deep in every K hack’s heart is revered space that admires teams that cut through the noise and simply wave a big stick and impact turn things, unabashedly defending conventional thought. If you do this well there’s a good chance you can win my ballot. If pure agonism is not your preferred tactic, that’s fine but make sure your post-modern offense onto kritiks can be easily extrapolated into a 1AR in a fashion that makes sense.
In many ways, I believe there’s more tension between Identity and Post-Modernism teams then there are with either of them and Policy debaters. That being said, I think the Eurotrash K positions ought to proceed with caution against arguments centred on Identity – it may not be smart to contend that they ought to embrace their suffering or claim that they are responsible for a polemical construction of identity that replicates the violence they experience (don’t victim blame).
THOUGHTS ON COMPETITION
There’s a lot of talk about what is or isn’t competition and what competition ought to look like in specific types of debate – thus far I am not of the belief that different methods of debate require a different rubric for evaluation. While much discussion as been given to “Competition by Comparison” I very much subscribe to Competing Methodologies. What I’ve learned in having these conversations is that this convention means different things to different people and can change in different settings in front of different arguments. For me, I try to keep it consistent and compatible with an offense/defense heuristic: competing methodologies requires an Affirmative focus where the Negative requires an independent reason to reject the Affirmative. In this sense, competition necessitates a link. This keeps artificial competition at bay via permutations, an affirmative right regardless of the presence of a plan text.
Permutations are merely tests of mutual exclusivity. They do not solve and they are not a shadowy third advocacy for me to evaluate. I naturally will view permutations more as a contestation of linkage – and thus, are terminal defense to a counterplan or kritik -- than a question of combining texts/advocacies into a solvency mechanism. If you characterize these as solvency mechanisms rather than a litmus test of exclusivity, you ought to anticipate offense to the permutation (and even theory objections to the permutation) to be weighed against your “net-benefits”. This is your warning to not be shocked if I'm extrapolating a much different theoretical understanding of a permutation if you go 5/6 minutes for it in the 2AR.
Even in method debates where a permutation contends both methods can work in tandem, there is no solvency – in these instances net-benefits function to shield you from links (the only true “net benefit” is the Affirmative). A possible exception to this scenario is “Perm do the Affirmative” where the 1AC subsumes the 1NC’s alternative; here there may be an offensive link turn to the K resulting in independent reasons to vote for the 1AC.
Director of Debate at The University of Michigan
General Judging Paradigm- I think debate is an educational game. Someone once told me
that there are three types of judges: big truth, middle truth, and little truth judges. I would
definitely fall into the latter category. I don’t think a two hour debate round is a search for
the truth, but rather a time period for debaters to persuade judges with the help of
evidence and analytical arguments. I have many personal biases and preferences, but I try
to compartmentalize them and allow the debate to be decided by the debaters. I abhor
judge intervention, but do realize it becomes inevitable when debaters fail to adequately
resolve the debate. I am a very technical and flow-oriented judge. I will not evaluate
arguments that were in the 2AR and 2AC, but not the 1AR. This is also true for
arguments that were in the 2NR and 1NC, but not in the negative block.
Counterplans/Theory- I would consider myself liberal on theory, especially regarding
plan-inclusive counterplans. Usually, the negative block will make ten arguments
theoretically defending their counterplan and the 1AR will only answer eight of them- the
2NR will extend the two arguments that were dropped, etc. and that’s usually good
enough for me. I have often voted on conditionality because the Aff. was technically
superior. If you’re Aff. and going for theory, make sure to answer each and every
negative argument. I am troubled by the recent emergence of theory and procedural
debates focusing on offense and defense. I don’t necessarily think the negative has to win
an offensive reason why their counterplan is theoretically legitimate- they just have to
win that their counterplan is legitimate. For the Aff., I believe that permutations must
include all of the plan and all or part of the counterplan. I think the do the counterplan
permutation is silly and don’t think it’s justified because the negative is conditional, etc. I
do realize this permutation wins rounds because it’s short and Neg. teams sometimes fail
to answer it. On the issue of presumption, a counterplan must provide a reason to reject
the Aff. Finally, I think it’s illegitimate when the Aff. refuses to commit to their agent for
the explicit purpose of ducking counterplans, especially when they read solvency
evidence that advocates a particular agent. This strategy relies on defending the theory of
textual competition, which I think is a bad way of determining whether counterplans
Topicality- When I debated, I commonly ran Affirmatives that were on the fringe of what
was considered topical. This was probably the reason I was not a great topicality judge
for the negative my first few years of judging college debate. Beginning this year, I have
noticed myself voting negative on topicality with greater frequency. In the abstract, I
would prefer a more limited topic as opposed to one where hundreds of cases could be
considered topical. That being said, I think topicality often seems like a strategy of
desperation for the negative, so if it’s not, make sure the violation is well developed in
the negative block. I resolve topicality debates in a very technical manner. Often it
seems like the best Affirmative answers are not made until the 2AR, which is probably
too late for me to consider them.
Kritiks- If I got to choose my ideal debate to judge, it would probably involve a politics
or other disadvantage and a case or counterplan debate. But, I do realize that debaters get
to run whatever arguments they want and strategy plays a large role in argument
selection. I have probably voted for a kritik about a half of dozen times this year. I never
ran kritiks when I debated and I do not read any philosophy in my free time. Kritik
rhetoric often involves long words, so please reduce your rate of speed slightly so I can
understand what you are saying. Kritiks as net-benefits to counterplans or alternatives
that have little or no solvency deficit are especially difficult for Affirmatives to handle.
Evidence Reading- I read a lot of evidence, unless I think the debate was so clear that it’s
not necessary. I won’t look at the un-underlined parts of cards- only what was read into
the round. I am pretty liberal about evidence and arguments in the 1AR. If a one card
argument in the 1NC gets extended and ten more pieces of evidence are read by the
negative block, the 1AR obviously gets to read cards. I think the quality of evidence is
important and feel that evidence that can only be found on the web is usually not credible
because it is not permanent nor subject to peer review. I wish there would be more time
spent in debates on the competing quality of evidence.
Cheap Shots/Voting Issues- These are usually bad arguments, but receive attention
because they are commonly dropped. For me to vote on these arguments, they must be
clearly articulated and have a competent warrant behind them. Just because the phrase
voting issue was made in the 1AR, not answered by the 2NR, and extended by the 2AR
doesn’t make it so. There has to be an articulated link/reason it’s a voting issue for it to
Pet Peeves- Inefficiency, being asked to flow overviews on separate pieces of paper, 2NRs that go for too much, etc.
Seasonal voting record:
Want to be on the email chain? - Yes, please send docs to: email@example.com
My paradigm, at its core, is to judge the debate according to the parameters set by the debaters in the room. I am willing to decide the round on any arguments the debater's mark as the voting issues (including T, theory, and other procedural arguments, traditional policy affs, planless affs, performance, etc.). You need to be clear, your evidence should be good, and your authors should generally agree with each other (on solvency, Ks, etc.). If you are running critical and/or performance arguments you should clearly articulate what the role of the judge/ballot is in the round.
I don't especially enjoy reading cards after the debate to try to piece together what should have been explained more clearly in the debate. If you think the round hinges on the text of a piece of evidence, spell it out in the rebuttals. Alternatively, if the debate is really good and evidence must be read, I'm perfectly happy to do so; I encourage you to provide me the context necessary to read for you.
Speed is great, just be clear. With online debating, I would encourage you, as good practice, to reduce your speed to 85% or so. Also, know that I flow on paper and need pen time--slow down on T, Theory, perms, CP texts, etc. If I ask you to be clear and you ignore me, I'm probably not going to be able to follow you on the flow. I keep pretty detailed flows (of course, not perfect), if it's not on my flow I'm not voting on it.
Overviews are a great rhetorical tool but if you speed through them I'm not sure how useful they are. Similarly, if they are 5 mins long, you are probably going to lose the LBL. Speaking of rhetorical tools, humor and personality are also a delightful addition to rounds, especially with everything being virtual. :-)
Needless hostility or defensiveness is intellectually--and just at a human level--crushing. Please don't. If you are racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, abelist, etc. please strike me--you will lose the debate.
St. Mark’s '16
Trinity University '20
UT Law '24
I've been a 2A and 2N. Me and my partner, Ian, got a First Round our senior year. I've cut soft left affs, heg affs, and process counterplans. Sometimes I read a planless aff. When I was a 2N, my most common 2NRs were politics/elections + states CP, the economy DA, the cap K, and Afropessimism. I don't care about what your strategy is so long as it engages the resolutional question/case and demonstrates a lot of research.
I love debate and I'm really happy to be judging.
I'm tech inclined, but, when tech is close, truth (evidence quality) matters.
***Things I will never, ever vote for
- X team did __ that didn't happen in round (X team is bad, their coach is bad, their prefs are bad, etc). You can group this with anything that's non-falsifiable. If something heinous happens during the round, that's different.
- Circular reasoning or incomplete arguments. Saying something is a "voting issue" without warrants is an incomplete argument.
- Debate is bad - I'm referring to the post-modern flavor of "this is a waste of time" or "communication is impossible," not an argument about how the debate community is structurally exclusionary or flawed in some other way.
***Things I don't like voting for but will when you debate well
- Judge kick. My presumption is not to judge kick. The neg has to win the argument for me to do so.
- Planless affs vs topicality
- Cheating counterplans
My other argument thoughts are just to alert you to argument-specific things I'm partial to; they can all be overcome by better debating.
Please keep your camera on. If mine's not on, then assume I'm not there.
You need to slow down ***significantly*** - I can't stress this enough.
Rules and process stuff
I only flow the debater giving the assigned speech; I don't care what speech it is. Do whatever you want in cross-ex.
New explanation merits new answers at any point. If you read a disgustingly underhighlighted 1NC shell only to then blow it up in the block, the 1AR obviously gets new answers.
I don't want a judge doc at the end of the debate. You should be clear about what your best cards are/reference them often; in close debates with evidence comparison, I almost always read cards.
Re-highlighting cards is a good practice. You get to re-insert their cards if you tell me why the card is bad - this is a good way to deter people from cutting bad cards. If you took something from a part of the article they didn't cut, then you have to read it.
DAs and risk
You can beat silly arguments without cards.
Yes zero risk.
Consequentialism bad is silly.
I'd rather you tell me more about why the DA is bad and do less (but not zero) framing.
Counterplans and theory
New affs don't justify all the bad theory things.
CP competition is swung by the strength of your solvency advocate (or the aff not having a good one).
Your plans should say things.
Process, consult, delay, anything that creates a functionally new FG - I don't like it. That includes "concon." The aff needs to invest time on theory to win it.
I don't think infinite, contradicting condo is good.
T (policy rounds)
I like T debates. Competing interpretations is my default, but I can be convinced that is a bad standard.
Caselists, evidence comparison, and t-versions are important. A more limited topic isn't automatically the best thing ever, especially if the neg's interp is contrived and not grounded in predictable literature.
The 1AR needs to do impact calc if the neg block is good - otherwise it's new in the 2AR and I protect the neg.
Staleness doesn't make sense as an aff impact on this big topic.
I lean negative because most aff v framework arguments force me to suspend logic regarding the nature of debate as a voluntary, competitive activity. Disads to the topic aren't disads to debating about the topic. You have to resolve the following questions (provided the negative asks them when running an impact about fairness/clash/debatability):
First, I don't really know why my ballot does more than determine a winner and loser. If there is some sort of external activism tradeoff that comes from what we say in rounds, then you need to be really explicit about why. Second, I don't think what we say in debate rounds is subject formation. Plans are provisional opinions and we use them test ideas while we come to contingent truths, not absolute ones. Even if the government's irredeemable, I'm not sure why reading a plan disavows its problematic history. Third, I think the burden of proof is really high on the aff to tell me what their alternative form of debate looks like, how the neg wins, and why contesting the 1ac is valuable. So in sum, I think research is good, representational politics for the sake of purely representation is terrible and tokenizing, and there being the conditions for fair clash is a prerequisite to any substantive question.
K v Policy
Love it... if you heavily clash with core 1AC premises/advantages. Links to the plan, and how the advantages implicate the plan's implementation, are even better. I'm well-versed with everything structural (cap, afropess, setcol, etc) and representational (security)... my understanding of high theory arguments is close to zero, so do more explanation there.
Framework is usually a wash but can determine how I view the alt's importance (or lack thereof).
Ontology claims merit a very high level of scrutiny. The burden of proof is on the team making an ontology argument to disprove counter-examples, which, by definition, disprove ontology claims.
K v K
You'd be better off going for T... but, rest assured, I'm unlikely to vote for a perm if you have links to 1AC language, authors, theories of power, or any core premise you can point out. I think "when there's no plan, the entire 1AC is the plan" is the most fair standard. That being said, if the link doesn't rely on any of those things, and the 1AC is clearly written to dodge clash and link to nothing but T, then you're going to lose to the perm.
Current affiliations: Leland || he series || Rounds on CJR topic: 44
Yes, put me on email chains: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Do what you do best... Although I've never had a big name or the most experience in debate, I've engaged a lot of the literature bases it has to offer, from reading exclusively Policy Affs at the start of high school to performing Asian identity Affs towards the end of high school/in college and giving lectures on pomo stuff as a coach. At a bare minimum, I will be able to follow a grand majority of debates.
2. ...but write my ballot for me. Judge intervention is annoying for everyone; the best debaters in my opinion are those that identify the nexus questions of the debate early on and use where they are ahead to tell me how to resolve those points in their favor. That involves smart comparative work, persuasive overviews, incorporation of warrants, etc. that I can use as direct quotes for a RFD in your favor.
3. Speed is fine, but in the words of Jarrod Atchison, spreading is the number of ideas, not words, communicated per minute. I will say clear twice per speech and then stop flowing if it remains unclear.
4. On CX: I'll flow portions I think are important. Tag-team is fine, but monopolization is not. Asking if your opponent did/did not read a piece of evidence is definitionally a cross-examination question and must be done during CX or prep.
Policy Affs - Great. I love a detailed case debate and will reward teams that engage in one.
T vs. Policy Affs - Love it, but if it's obvious you read your generic T shell solely as an effort to sap time, it loses most of its persuasive value for me. Specific and well explained violations and standards are key; why should I vote for you on T when I don't understand why your model of debate is better? Be creative with your interpretations!
I find myself about 60-40 partial to competing interpretations.
CPs - The block/2NR should hammer home a convincing internal/external net benefit(s) and, preferably, specific Solvency deficits to the Aff that the CP resolves. The threshold for me voting for a CP decreases based on how well it competes and the presence of detailed reasoning as to why I should prefer it to the plan and perms. Generally, however, I think that CPs that could result in the implementation of the plan (i.e. consult, delay, process) are probably abusive, which makes me more conducive to theory arguments here. These biases are far from absolute, but you should be aware of them.
Two smaller things: 1) I think Aff teams let Neg teams get away with too much with sufficiency framing and should aggressively defend alternatives like competing advocacies, and 2) I tend not to judge kick, you need to win condo and flag otherwise if needed.
DAs - I dig go-ham OVs with smart, in-depth sequencing/turns case arguments that decisively win that the DA outweighs the case (and vice versa). The link story and the internal link chain are the most important for me; the more specific your link evidence, the better. Zero risk is possible.
I'd love if more Aff teams were bold enough to link/impact turn DAs, it certainly makes for more interesting debates than four minute UQ walls.
The K - Explain the link and alt story well. The least meaningful debates here are when one side goes on and on about the intricacies of their lit base without ever meaningfully engaging the Aff; you're debating, not writing a dissertation. I appreciate 2NCs that demonstrate in-depth understanding of their literature base AND do a good job connecting it directly to the form/content of the Aff; to this end, I'm a big fan of references to/direct quotes from Affirmative speeches and CX to contextualize the link debate. You can ask me before the round/email me on my familiarity with specific literature bases.
Be honest about how long your overview is (don't be afraid to ask for another sheet for it), and if your overview is any longer than three minutes, I'd highly recommend checking if you could move some of the analytical work to the line-by-line.
K Affs - Ambivalence is a good word to describe my thoughts here. I think that debate is a game with pedagogical benefits and epistemological consequences, and that Affirmatives should be in the direction of the resolution/provide a reasonable window for Negative engagement. What that means or where the bright-lines are, I'm not entirely sure. Subjects of the resolution and even debate itself may have insidious underpinnings, but I need to understand what voting for the advocacy/performance (if applicable) does about the state of those issues. As a judge, I find myself asking more questions than before about what my ballot actually does; providing the answers through ROB analysis and explanations of the Aff's theory will serve you well.
FW vs. K Affs - Despite what I said above might imply, I love FW debates, especially those that come down to comparing models of education. I think I'm a better judge for skills and SSD-based impacts than for procedural ones like fairness, partly because these procedural impacts are almost always described as vague "intrinsic goods" that I have a more difficult time evaluating than tangible shifts in what debaters get out of the activity. Collapse to a couple of your best external net benefits in the 2NR and do comparative impact work between these and the 1AR, e.g. by impacting out advocacy skills as giving debaters the tools to create movements in the direction of the Aff. Don't get too defensive no matter how hard they push you.
Not all rounds have to have a TVA. Know when you should have one and when you should not.
Theory - In general, I have a relatively high threshold for rejecting the team; this doesn't mean I won't vote on theory, it just means that I want you to do the work. There should be be ample analysis on how they justify an unnecessarily abusive model of debate with examples/impacted out standards.
I don't have any specific biases either way on the condo debate. I'd strongly prefer if interpretations were not obviously self-serving (e.g. "we get five condo" because you read five conditional off this particular round); while I understand this is at times an inevitability, it is also not the best way to make a first impression for your shell.
Specific arguments I dislike - New Affs bad, non-falsifiable arguments that cite something from outside the round, Idso, arguments based on personal insults/xenophobia (racism, sexism, anti-LGBTQIA+ language, etc.)
Lay - If judging at a California league tournament/a lay tournament of equivalence, I'll do my best to judge debates from a parent judge perspective unless both teams agree to a circuit-style debate. Offense-defense is probably easier for Affirmatives, and stock issues are probably easier for Negatives.
If you get me on a panel and some of the other judges are parents/inexperienced, PLEASE don’t go full speed with a super complicated "circuit" strategy. It’s important that all the judges are able to engage in the debate and render decisions for themselves based on the arguments presented; if they miss those arguments because you’re going 700 WPM or because they don’t know who this Deleuze person is, you are deliberately excluding them from the debate, which is disrespectful no matter how inexperienced they may be. I’ll still be able to make decisions based off your impact framing and explanations, so cater to the judges who may not understand rather than me.
Last thing: please be respectful of one another. I hate having to watch debates where CX devolves into pettiness and debaters are just being toxic. I will reward good humor and general maturity. Have fun :)
If your name is Hannah Lee and you are reading this, you are amazing, have a nice day
Yes, include me on the email chain. email@example.com
Brooklyn Tech: 2011 - 2012 (those three novice UDL tournaments apparently count), 2017 - present (coach)
NYU: 2014 - 2018
The New School: 2018-2020 (coach)
***I used to keep my video off for rounds, but I've since learned that it's a mistake for the morale of the debater as well as for confirming whether or not I'm actually in the room. If my camera is off, I am not in the room. Please do not start speaking***
In case you're pressed for time
1. Do you. Have fun. Don't drop an important argument.
2. If there is an impact in the 2NR/2AR, there's a high chance you've won the debate in front of me. I like going for the easy way out and impacts give me the opportunity to do that. Impact comparisons are good too.
3. I flow on paper, so please don't be upset if I miss arguments because you're slurring your words or making 17 arguments/minute.
4. Don't assume I know the acronyms or theories you're talking about, even if I do. This is a persuasion activity, so no shortcuts to persuading me.
5. Obviously, I have biases, but I try not to let those biases influence how I decide a round. Usually, if debaters can't accomplish #2, then I'll be forced to. I prefer to go with the flow though.
6. I have a master's degree in Design & Technology, so I'll be impressed to see anyone using the online debate format to create fancy debate presentations. It's fine if you don't or can't.
**ONLINE DEBATE**: You don't need to yell into your mic. I can hear you fine. In fact, yelling into your mic might make it harder for me to hear you. Which means you may lose. Which is bad. For you.
**PF ONLY**: I didn't care about your Sunday best in person and I care even less about it online. If you want to keep your camera off when I'm judging, it's fine (particularly if your connection isn't strong). You're not going to lose the round or lose speaks for it. Also, I don't know why asking for evidence isn't done in advance or automatically considered taking prep time. Just know that, in front of me, if it takes more than 2 minutes to ask for evidence, it's coming out of your prep. And 3 minutes is not a lot of prep to begin with.
If you're not so pressed for time
I debated for four years at NYU and ran mostly soft left affs. I think that means I'm a pretty good judge for these types of affs and it also means I'm probably able to tell if there is a genuine want for a discussion about structural violence impacts or if they're just tacked on because K debaters are scary.
I do think debate is a game, but I also think people should be allowed to modify the "rules" of the game if they're harmful or just straight up unlikeable. I guess now would also be a good time to point I'm a game designer, so I like thinking about the implications of declaring debate to be "just" a game or "more than" a game. Now to the important stuff.
Speed: Through a card, I'll tolerate it. Through a tag or analytics, I'll be pretty annoyed. And so will you, because I'll probably miss something important that could cost you the round. When reading a new card, either verbally indicate it ("and" or "next") or change your tone to reflect it.
Planless affs: Even in a game, some people just don't want to defend the government. And that's perfectly okay. But I would like the aff to be relevant to the current topic. I feel like some affs are just random backfile cards put together with slightly altered tags. Not a big fan of those, but I'll still vote for them if I'm convinced enough in a round.
CP: Wasn't really much of a CP debater and I don't really coach teams that run CPs, except the basic novice ones that come in a starter kit. I think they're a fine argument and am willing to vote on them.
DA: You could never go wrong with a good DA. DAs, when run correctly, have a really good, linear story that can be extended in the neg block and could be used to effectively handle aff answers. Feel free to go crazy.
Ks: I can't think of a neg round where I didn't run a K. I've run cap, security, queerness, my aff, and some variations of Black feminism. But please, do not talk to me as if I know your K. If you're running pomo, I most definitely don't know your K and will need to be talked through it with analogies and examples. If you're running an identity K, I probably do know your K but expect the same from you as I expect from a pomo debater. Cap, security - you get the memo.
T: My favorite neg arg as a senior. I'm always down for a good T debate. I do think that sometimes it's used as a cop-out, but I also think that some affs aren't forwarding any sort of plan or advocacy. Just stating an FYI and a neg can't really argue against that. So T becomes the winning strategy.
Framework: Not exactly the same as T, but I still fucks with it. If you're a non-Black debater, I do not care what variation of Framework (or T) you're running in front of me. Just call it framework.
Theory: Important, but the way debaters speed through their theory shells makes me question just how important it is. Again, slow down when reading theory in front of me so it's actually an option for you at the end of the round.
Things I like that will increase speaks:
1. Wrestling (sometimes)
2. Nicki Minaj
3. Doja Cat
4. Video games (mainly Pokemon, Dragon Age, Dynasty Warriors, Persona)
Most likely, if you've had me as a judge, then you know my timer. This is where I downloaded it from (and yes, it's wrestling-related): https://youtu.be/-TkA3ObTSLc
[digital debate notes] be mindful and adjust for your peers with diminished tech access/literacy. I'll clear you once via chat. do not start if my camera is off.
they/them/any pronouns // firstname.lastname@example.org
I study political theory/middle eastern studies at UC Berkeley, currently 2 yrs out of high school. I am from kansas so my views of debate are heavily influenced by KU [former/current coaches/debaters]. in high school, I was a 2N who went for neolib and T.
I don't have many strong feelings about the way debate SHOULD be. Do what you want, and I will try my best to meet you halfway. I do miss things while flowing & I won't apologize for that, so slow down where it matters. I like efficiency/punctuality & will not punish a truncated speech. i do not read "inserts"
my debate experience is most favorable for policy-policy or policy-K, my field of study has a lot of overlap with common "kritikal" literature. K-K debates are good but I'm far from qualified to watch them.
[important] I have a mild attention deficit disorder so signposting is extremely important (necessary) to me. content warnings/disability accommodations/etc should be made verbally before disclosure/round. would self-describe as flex.
[general] Default that the ballot signals W/L to tab. You should: 1) engage each other, 2) pull warrants, 3) frame my ballot. Speed is good unless someone objects/it hinders clarity. Tech > truth - judge intervention bad. I only read ev if it is extended thru the entire db8/flagged.
[case] plan texts are comfortable, but not required. Impact defense is not the only case argument that exists! I won't read "inserted" card recuts - read the recut. framing debates are frustrating because they are seldom executed well :D
[non-rez affs] not experienced here, but my voting record is pretty evenly split, neg-leaning on t-USFG for limits/TVAs. not debating case is a terrible idea. being related to the resolution is good. I wanna be told the implications of voting aff/neg. you need to tell me why you get to redefine the ballot/judge, and why that redefinition is good.
[k] Ks are good, K word-vomit is not. I debated in the midwest bubble, so things outside of setcol/antiBlackness/security/neolib/orientalism/queer pess are unfamiliar to me. metaphysics/high theory are out of my comfort zone. err on the side of over-explaining. specific links are good, omission links are hardly links. I do actually care about impacts to framework interps do not skimp or speed here.
>> i would like teams to tell me what the implication is for winning their theory of power/framework
[disads] yes. warrants/impact calc are uber-important. rider disads are cringe
[cp] CP word vomit bad (("suFfIeNcY fRaMiNg" // "pErM dO tHe ___")) - tell me what the threshold is for sufficiency, how your perms are legitimate, etc. I'm down to judge kick/theoretically reject judge kick. cheating CP's are extremely cringe. I always evaluate CP's beginning w a risk of the net benefit.
[T and T: USFG] I prefer a limited topic, but can't say I have aff/neg bias. Spec your ground loss, read caselists, and impact out your model of debate. SLOW DOWN. the best T debates come straight from the flow, not blocks. TVA's are good, solvency deficits are neg ground. 2AC's that predict the block to set-up a shut-down 1AR usually have me leaning aff.
> reasonability does not mean "is the aff reasonable", it means "is the c/i and its consequential model of debate reasonable"
> I didn't debate non-rez affs much, so my impressions of t-USFG are derived mainly from judging.
[theory] I default to rejecting the arg. i tend to drop stuff on my flow here lol
[speaker points] everyone starts at 28. I drop speaks for highly uncoordinated strategy, offensive stuff, bad cross x decorum, and excessive abrasiveness.
PF/LD in HS, now a UT policy debater (2A/1N).
PSHS '20, UT '24
Conflicts: Plano Senior HS (Plano, TX), Jasper HS (Plano, TX), Clark HS (Plano, TX)
email@example.com (Email for email chain)
Judges who I largely agree with:
Pref Sheet for all Events (1 is highest, 5 is lowest)
1 - LARP/theory
2 - K
3 - phil
4 - tricks
5 - K aff, performance
Theory - DtA, Reasonability, RVIs*
Presumption/Permissibility flows neg
Policymaking in the absence of a RotB and Utilitarianism in absence of an alternative framework
Note that these are just what I default to in the absence of arguments made for any of these issues, if any arguments are made on these I will obviously evaluate them.
*Check theory section if you do CX Debate
As a general note, my favorite rounds to judge are really solid LARP/theory/K rounds, but don't worry if that's not your strat because I'm fine with anything as long as you do a really good job of it. Good flow-oriented debate will always beat grandstanding and not flow-oriented debate.
TLDR if you are pressed for time: Debated policy style (CP, DA) and a little bit of K. Do your strat and I will do my best to evaluate it.
- +0.5 speaks for disclosure on the NDCA wiki before round with proof
- second rebuttal should frontline offense in the first rebuttal
- defense isn't sticky in summary
- summary and final should ideally mirror each other
- weigh, weigh, weigh! good weighing will reward you in round
LARP - favorite style of debate. I really like smaller affs and specific case debate. I think 2+ CPs are pushing it on condo in LD. I don't really have a predisposition to any DA so run them all. Good weighing in the 2NR/2AR is a good way to get my ballot in a LARP round. Finally, please extend case in the 2AR if you want me to evaluate it at the end of the round. If case was conceded in the 2NR, a small 2AR extension at the top of the 2AR will suffice.
Theory - I prefer more fleshed out arguments rather than blips. I would also like you to go a little slower through analytics and on the interp text/counterinterp text. I will vote on disclosure theory but I think there is a difference between someone not disclosing at all and someone not adhering to every single little interp you have. I also probably won't evaluate disclosure on novices, people who clearly don't know what it is or people who can prove in a verifiable way that their school policy prevents it. Other than that, I don't have any strong preferences on theory but I will say the bar to responding to friv theory is much lower. Good standard weighing and clear abuse stories are easy ways to get my ballot in a theory round. *CX Specific - theory/T are not RVIs, so don't try it.*
T - I only really ask that you have a TVA/caselist with any topicality argument or I will err more on the aff side of topicality. Other than that, anything is fine.
Tricks - I mean, I guess you can but I won't be too thrilled about it. Just delineate them, err on the side of overexplaining the arguments (like don't be blippy) and be up front in CX. Also, reading them on a novice or trad debater will cap your speaks at 27. I will not vote off condo logic - its a terrible argument (tbf all tricks are terrible but this one just is worse than the rest).
Phil - I'm familiar with Kant, Rawls, Hobbes and virtue ethics at a basic level but assume I don't know your lit and err on the side of overexplaining what the framework is and how the offense links under it.
K - I've only really read cap and security as a debater so assume I don't know your lit so err on the side of overexplaining the theory of power in the 2NR. I really like well done K debates, so please don't forgo the line-by-line for overarching overview answers and shallow explanations of the arguments that regurgitate buzzwords, that will make me sad. Including examples to explain the theory of power and/or alternative are also good. I also like specific links to the 1AC, generic links are fine but specificity will always better your chances of winning and/or getting good speaks.
K affs/performance - I don't really know the ins-and-outs of this style of debate too well because I never really debated in this style, but I will say I tend to lean on the neg side of T-framework just because I ended up on that side in a lot of debates.
UCSD Class of ‘23.
Speaks: I'm not an jerk, 28 is pretty much my minimum. I have judged north of 10 rounds on this topic, so I know my way around the lit. I've voted a lot for the neg this year, this is true. I blame it on the AFF losing (1) significant amounts of case and (2) risks of a disadvantage paired with case turns. Well prepped teams tend to convince me to vote AFF.
I used to have to do prefs myself, and here's what I would have wanted to read. I was fast and tech-based in high school, did 4 years of policy, and will listen and judge the round. I don't have a ton of argument preferences, but I'm generally Tech > Truth, Pro-Spreading, pretty center leaning in terms of arguments (Last year I read policy and kritikal affs, and read both 8 and 1 off strats), I believe debate is a game that might have real world implications (if you win that it does).
I WILL: Read your evidence, Judge the round without bias, Give feedback both on the round and how to improve arguments in the future.
I WON'T: Use prior feelings about arguments when judging arguments, Make leaps in logic because some dead french guy said I should, let my beliefs about an argument influence how I judge it.
Things that will help you: Smart analytics, well-researched strategies, passion for whatever argument you're reading (I used to love the Econ DA and it reflected in my rounds).
Things that will hurt you: Nonsensical arguments, poorly executed arguments, conflicting arguments (I.E. Neolib and Econ, Death Good and any DA, etc).
I have probably read the DA/CP/K/T/Theory you are reading at some point in high school. If you have any questions specifically, either email me or ask me pre-round.
Parker Mitchell Updated for: Berkeley (winter 2021)
He/They/She are all fine.
Plz don't shake my hand
Yes email chain, no flash chain
Equal chances on framework
Fairness is an impact but not the only impact
Competing interps are best
There is NOT "always a risk"
I flow cx
Speed is good (except when accessibility/disability concerns)
Postround if you want
I have now judged a significant amount of online policy rounds. They mostly** went well.
I do not follow along with the doc -- debate is, in part, a speaking activity. Sending your analytics is nice for the other team, but will not help me flow. It's difficult unmute and say clear while flowing: if you're unclear I will simply not be able to flow you and have no way of warning you (although I will always try my best). This has impacted a couple debates especially in 2ACs. Be very careful about your transitions. You should make a note of the ability of your microphone and speed of your internet connection when you assess how fast you want to go.
I prefer, but do not require, your camera to be on. Watching you speak helps me with clarity and I don't allow myself to read along on docs so it helps to have visuals for focus. This is simply a preference: if you calculate that your internet/sound setup will interfere more with clarity if your camera is on (or you have another overriding reason for your camera to be off), I have no objection to your decision.
My camera will be on during speeches, RFD and probably most of prep/dead time, excepting unique circumstances. Unless I have notified you otherwise, if my camera is off I am not ready and may be away from the keyboard (getting water, going to the bathroom etc.) Please, don't start if my camera is off or if you see an empty chair. Sidenote: I'm using a dual screen setup. This won't require any adaptations from you but it may sometimes look as if i'm looking past the camera or to the side during cx and speeches because the debate is on a screen to the right of my camera. I am still paying attention.
** Tech issues - on your end: I'll consider tournament regulations. These usually have not been a big deal but recently due to tournaments with shorter decision times and strict tech time regulations combined with weather-induced tech problems and debaters competing from cars I've experienced more issues. I will do everything I can allowed by tournament rules to ensure a debate takes place - I know you've worked hard, paid your entry fees and deserve to debate, however it is also unfair to the other team if I'm unable to make a decision in time because their opponent was unable to be present. I understand that these issues are not your fault so I will not be any more restrictive than the tournament requires and will always consult with tab before assessing a forfeit.
on my end: I have experienced tech issues in only a small percentage of rounds from my end (wifi disconnection). I don't have access to a wired internet connection with my setup. In those instances I have been able to recover my flow by either resetting speech time or on a panel the 1AR repeated the last 2 minutes. Again, these issues have been uncommon.
Debate is a game, I'm open to almost* any of strategy that will help you win that game. My ballot will probably decide whether the proposition of the affirmative is better than the proposition of the negative.
*exceptions: blatant/unapologetic racism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, ableism. I have only used this exception once because someone was defending George Zimmerman, I have not been close to using it again.
TOPIC SPECIFIC NOTE (HS only)
Very neg leaning on this topic - I suspect this is due to affs of all shapes overly concerned with defensive framing arguments and failing to develop nuanced and specific offense against neg positions. (I'm beginning to regress to the mean, but these notes are still helpful!)
Soft left debates (majority of topic): The best soft left affs develop a nuanced critique of the status quo and develop offensive routes to victory that are germane to their critique. The worst soft left affs offer a minor reform and read 7 minutes of generic framing cards. This is a spectrum with many affs on this topic leaning the wrong way.
I don't expect you to overhaul your aff for one judge - instead you should develop more offensive justifications for your framing contention. Against CP/DA, critique the logic of the CP, critique the DA impact, what it justifies etc. Most framing arguments become far too defensive, even if well developed. Against Ks, non-reformist reform should mean something beyond negative state action - non-reformist reforms are radical (offensive, in your case) because they make the revolutionary act of the alt possible (coupled with an alt fails now argument).
K Aff Debates: Be offensive, not conciliatory to framework. IDC if you are in the direction of the topic, that's just defense. Develop offensive arguments that are germane to your K, not just generic retorts to SSD/TVAs.
KvK and Big Stick Debates: I haven't judged a significant amount of these debates (about 1-2 of each). I can't determine where my biases lie on these yet.
4 years of debate for Shawnee Mission East high school in Kansas, 5 years for the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Currently assistant coach at Shawnee Mission East (5 years), occasionally assist for the Asian Debate League (ADL). Also worked with DKC, Truman and Turner HS.
Topic Experience (HS): 50+ rounds on the CJR topic, I did not coach at a camp this year but I have coached significantly during the fall semester. I have a fairly broad familiarity with the topic.
Topic Experience (College): 2 rounds on the Alliance topic. I don't coach for a college team and I mostly judge HS, so I will be behind on specifics, acronyms and community norms on the topic.
T: Often an underrated strategic option. RVIs are bad, but I'm open to impact turns from K affs. Both sides should have an interp. I (almost always) evaluate under competing interpretations. I (almost never) consider precision separately from limits and ground debates, it strikes me closer to an impact framing argument than an impact or internal link in and of itself.
CPs: "Cheating" CPs are "fine", win theoretical justifications+substance and you will win, probably not going to reject the team unless the neg fails to forward a "reject the arg" claim.
Statuses: I lean that Condo is good, dispo/uncondo is bad. Status theory is winnable, you need an interp and remember to ask. (n-x) interps are unpersuasive.
DAs: I've sat against the negative in a couple close debates with DA/Case strategies. I have difficulty assigning "minute risk" on disads if significant defense is persuasive and/or conceded. Winning requires a clean 2nr or significant defense.
Ks: The neg can critique both plan and non-plan parts of the aff. The aff can weigh itself. Work out nuances. I think I have a pretty good, but not universal, grasp on most critical literature in debate. Structural Ks are common for a reason (strategic) and (although I have IRL issues with his theory) Baudrillard in debate is misunderstood and unfairly maligned. DnG-based Ks are certainly winnable but test my personal patience. Cap (Marx) is a double edged sword as it was my favorite argument to debate but I also have a lot of opinions on it.
I don't know why most "Death Good" arguments are maligned as uniquely more messed up than many "big stick" policy arguments (First Strike, Drones Good etc). However, you should always be careful with any of these arguments. As an educator working with high school age students I do have a concern for safety and mental health. Ask yourself, is your argument about ethics, the spectacle of extinction/death, the value of life OR is it something that may raise concerns about your mental health like calling for self harm of any form? The first category is ok, the second is not. Additionally, reading drones good against someone whose family immigrated from an area that is affected by American imperial violence also raises ethical concerns about your argumentation. I like arguments that push and question boundaries in our activity, but you should still have an ethical framework in mind.
K Affs: They can be good. Framework can also be a good strategy against them. I find framework debates to be extremely interesting, although they make my hand hurt afterwards. I usually take a lot of time deciding in both Framework debates and KvK debates because they tend to have a lot of nuance and/or moving parts.
Flowing: One sheet in the 1nc will remain that way. Each individual sheet will be straight down, overviews will not separate. Preferably don't give sub-orders before the speech ("I'm doing framework, interp first, then tva, limits da..." etc), they confuse me/are irrelevant because I am flowing straight down.
Speed: Speed is generally good. Maintain clarity. I may "clear" you a few times. I should hear the full body of the card, I want to listen to every word, you shouldn't be able to get away with slurring during the body.
CX: I flow cross-x. It's binding. Open > Closed. Won't pay attention to "flex prep." Try to ask all of your questions during CX because I can't hold the other side accountable during "flex prep."
Language: The use of racial/sexist/homophobic/transphobic slurs, in any way other than as used by individuals who are affected by those slurs, results in 0 speaks and a loss. Be mindful of problematic (non-slur) language. Mistakes happen, but so must sincere apologies.
Postrounding: you are welcome to.
Ethics: Ethics challenges stop the round immediately and require proof. If the accused party did violate a legitimate challenge they will receive the loss and 0 speaks, the reverse is true if the challenge is illegitimate. Clipping is definitively a violation. I will surrender to tournament regulations.
Disclosure: I will orally disclose provided the tournament allows it. Please disclose pre-debate. It's good.
Prep: Flashing is not prep.
Speaks: I use CDR's points rubric, adjusting for estimated pool skill.
I have limited LD experience, I debated it for a couple of years in KS and went to NSDA nationals.
Traditional LD makes little sense to me. I really don't get Value/Criterion, they simply read as impact framing args to me, so you should probably treat them as such. I'm more attracted to LARP/Phil and the wild west of progressive LD than traditional LD as these are more familiar to me.
Speed, Ks, plans are fine, LD theory is intriguing but somewhat new to me. Please, roadmap and signpost I will flow.
Default to deciding whether the resolution is true or good unless presented with different ballot framing. Get creative: i find many LD topics are one sided and dull when played traditionally. T really can help out here.
I get a bit lost in this event. I will evaluate the debate technically using an offense defense paradigm unless persuaded otherwise. I will attempt to flow on two sheets (AC/NC). Your case should include offensive reasons to vote for your side, not just defense.
All debate events require clash or they are just oratory: That means whichever team goes second should explicitly answer the other team's case. The second round of speeches need to both extend arguments and answer opponents. Final speeches should include a brief overview with ballot instruction and also continue LBL work. Do not eschew clash for the sake of speaking pretty, that is a quick way to lose my ballot.
I probably don't know who you are and more importantly I don't care as my job is to be a neutral arbiter of a single debate. This is advantageous for teams who aren't relying on rep to win rounds.
I like well researched positions that don't contradict themselves unless it's explained in advance or immediately after why those contradictions are ok. the news is your friend. don't assume i know what you mean unless i'm nodding my head.
if you are running ironic positions without explaining or looking up from your laptop, I will take you literally.
don't run a framework without actually explaining what it means, that leaves it up to me or your opponent to interpret it.
flashing is prep and you can just send the first card and then your partner can send the rest as the speech is happening
I'm flowing, if you're sp(eed)reading incoherently I (probably) won't vote for you. my facial and physical expressions will give away whats happening in most rounds. I'm listening to cross-x and you should reference it in your speeches.
ask me specific questions and I will happily answer them.
hook me on the chain firstname.lastname@example.org
Kritiks -- This is where most people go first when they look at paradigms so I'll just put it at the top. The best debates I've seen are the ones where the neg has a super specific link story against an aff. The reason I get so frustrated with aff teams is because the aff never really utilizes any of their aff against the K, they just read stuff like "realism inev" or "neolib good" or "who the hell is baudrillard (Balsas 2006)." There is nothing wrong with these arguments in a vacuum -- they are necessary to win debates (you need indicts, impact turns, etc.) -- but my point is that you have to make a story about how your aff RELATES to those arguments and why that means your aff is NOT what the K describes. And what that means is READ the link evidence. A lot of the time the neg's link cards aren't about the aff at all, they are about random reasons why hegemony might be bad.
I don't think "framework - you don't get a K" is a good argument at all, but framework is important for both teams to explain why the judge should view a debate in a certain way.
Please do not make a million permutations without any explanation/warrant -- saying "perm do both, perm do the aff and non-mutually exclusive parts of the alt, perm do the aff and then the alt" doesn't really get you anywhere -- the neg could stand up and say "perm do both fails" and i'd be totally fine. You didn't explain what perm do both means or why it would work, so why should the negative explain why it fails? I just don't really think it's fair for the 2AC to say "perm do both" and then the neg has to read a 4 minute perm block just to answer 3 words. So neg -- take advantage of this. Obviously explain why the perm fails, but know that I will cut you some slack if there is legit 0 explanation of any of the perms. This also avoids those debates where no one knows what perm was extended in the 2AR and which perm the 2NR was answering.
The reason this section's explanation is so long is because K debates can either be the worst debates or the best debates. If both sides are knowledgeable about their authors and arguments, it's extremely fun to watch and both sides will get great speaker points -- but if both sides are just going through the motions and reading generic stuff, it's kind of terrible and boring.
Topicality -- literally was like 60% of my 1NRs, I think it's really effective when the negative paints a scary version of the topic under the aff's interpretation. Impact comparison is really important for both sides; limits is an impact in my opinion, but obviously it can also be an internal link to ground. Explanation o/w evidence -- but having the best/qualified definition will probably make the debate easier for you to win. I think reasonability is a question of ground -- i.e. is there enough stuff the negative could read against the aff based on topic generics released at camps? It doesn't make sense for reasonability to be like "gut check am i reasonable" because that's arbitrary and based on someone's thoughts -- it's not debatable. That being said, you can obviously argue a different interpretation of what reasonability is and i'd be happy to hear it/vote for it!
No Plan Affs/Framework -- Enjoy them, and am totally open to listening to them. The closer the aff is to the topic, the less of a threat framework should be. Just saying I mainly read policy affs in high school, except once at the TOC and that aff still had a plan. I think fairness is an impact for framework, but most people think it's an internal link to limits (which i also think is an impact, it's just a separate one). I don't really think it's smart to go for education on framework -- kritik teams will always have more game on education-type arguments.
Disads -- topic specific DA's > generic ones. don't really think politics DA is that cool/hipster, but aff teams don't know how to point out how stupid it is so neg teams end up winning a lot of these debates for some reason. Pls pls pls pls do impact turn debates. these are SO FUN to watch and if u just drop a million, quality arguments and do awesome case defense it's like sooo hard for the 1ar to come back. but this means u have to have a decent sized 1nc shell! reading 1 card on case that impact turns econ decline does not cut it. the 2ac has to be able to slightly predict it, i'll give them leeway if you only read 1 impact turn card in the 1nc. that being said!!! Aff teams -- it's really cool and i will reward u with speaker points if u kick out of the aff in the 1ar and go for straight impact turns -- i LOVED doing that and we won a ton of debates bc of it (@ jaden lessnick). but that doesn't mean always do it front of me -- u should always protect your aff and don't kick out of it if you don't need to.
CP's -- they are great, i like case specific pics, i think theory needs to be a bigger deal though. so many cp's are illegit and i went for "reject the team" a lot -- (especially on things like agent cp's) -- only if the 2nr goes for it. but you have to say WHY i should reject the team. but obviously keep in mind (neg) i will still vote for these arguments if you debate it well -- that's the point of debate. it's just my personal preference. if you debate it really well i'll higher your speaks and stuff, don't just not read an argument cuz i'm not the biggest fan of it. i don't think "rejecting the argument" solves anything and is kind of unfair to the aff. states cp is probs cheating so just have a fed key warrant or just go for theory lmao
Theory -- I don't have a specific threshold for how many condo advocacies are allowed/not allowed -- having 2 that are inconsistent is probs worse than having 3 that totally are. Plz do impact comparsion, this is what wins theory debates. no one really does it which is why theory debates get a bad rep. every theory argument is a reason to reject the team unless told otherwise, but if the 2nr doesn't go for it, it's an uphill battle for "rejecting the team."
General Experience: I debated for Bellarmine College Prep on the national circuit for 4 years as a 1A/2N, graduated in 2016. During my senior year, I read a soft left affirmative (and for my other years read mostly big stick policy affirmatives), and went for anything ranging from Politics/CP to psychosecurity kritiks on the neg.
Relevant Stuff at the Top: I'm down with K affs/Kritiks, but I'm also willing to vote on framework. Tech > Truth. I'm decently familiar with most generic K's and DA's, but haven't had a bunch of experience on this topic, so just make sure you're slowing down and explaining to me all the different acronyms/etc.
T: I default to competing interpretations. Make sure you're weighing impacts, and not just leaving me to decide whether or not fairness matters more than education at the end of the debate.
Theory: I usually default to reject the argument not the team unless you tell me explicitly so. I'm all for you going for theory, just make sure you impact your voters and explain to me why it's a reason to reject the team. Make sure you're actually giving me an interpretation of what debate looks like, and why reading multiple conditional advocacies/whatever is a reason to vote neg/aff. I'm less sympathetic to 5 seconds of blippy theory blown up in the rebuttal speeches.
CP: I evaluate CP's through comparison of net benefits vs. solvency deficits. I usually lean neg on neg fiat, but I'll vote on any CP theory you throw at me. (50 State actor bad, etc, etc.) I'll judge kick at the end unless otherwise told to do so.
K: Read whatever you feel most comfortable with, I'm somewhat familiar with most of the generic K's that were read on the circuit during my time (Wilderson, Security, etc.) but I'm not as familiar with most of postmodern theory (Baudrillard, Deleuze, etc.) I usually evaluate K debates on framework first, then go to the rest of K proper, so make sure to be making clear your interpretation of what debates should be like, especially when you get into K vs. Plan Framework debates. (Do I weigh the plan vs. the real world representations?)
DA: I'm fine with all disads. Make sure you make your turns case/outweigh case stuff clear at the top, so that I know how to evaluate it at the end of the debate. I'm perfectly fine with analytics if a DA is particularly silly, or if you know their evidence doesn't say what you think it says. Link usually controls uniqueness.
If you have any further questions, feel free to ask me at email@example.com
Saint Vincent de Paul '19
Judge for Sonoma Academy
Hey there, my name is Emma but I do go by Tony as well(she/her), feel free to call me whatever in round. (If you can naturally call me Captain I will give you a speaks boost. If it is not natural, I will know) I qualified for the TOC my sophomore and senior year and broke at most national tournaments during those two years. I have read K Affs for three of my seven years in debate but don't think that it means I am biased towards one type of argument but I am definitely more K friendly. I am a pretty basic judge, you do you and I will be happy to judge the round fairly. I get that judges might be intimidating, but I'm pretty nice. Feel free to ask me questions, we're all here to have fun.
Please strike me if you read an argument that is - racist, sexist, homophobic or anything that inherently violates someone as a person or their identity. I work on a three strike policy, if you say something that I believe comes close to crossing the line, I will tell you in the round, thats strike one. If you continue, I will warn you once more and you have docked your speaks. Strike three, I will drop you and make sure to sit you and your coach down to talk about your actions. This is not a norm that I am enforcing based on my own biases, it's based on the actions of debaters that have been left unchecked. Due to recent events in high school policy debate, if you come from a well cemented policy program you will have a higher standard to reach in general.
A note for large squads: I will hold you to a higher standard in general especially about my three strike policy. I am not a fan of a whole squad reading the same aff but I do understand it can be beneficial for debaters. That being said, read your files before the tournament. The trend of sharing files and never looking over the one's you didn't do is killing debate. So please, read your files.
Please put me on the email chain - firstname.lastname@example.org and feel free to email me any questions and let me know if I can help make the the round more accessible.
I am willing to hear anything. Please don’t change what you’re strat just because I like a K more than a DA. If it’s a debate where we can all learn I will be super happy to judge it.
DA’s – they’re good, contextualize the link, make sure I know the story by the end of the round
CP’s – they’re also pretty cool, if you’re the affirmative I am happy to hear that the CP is abusive for XYZ reasons, make sure I have a story by the end of the round and some kind of net benefit. Perms need clear contextualization by the 1AR or I won't vote on it. I.E tell me exactly how it functions in this round.
K’s – I love a good K debate but this doesn’t mean you should read a K you don’t understand, same goes for the link debate here. Please explain the K like I am a policy judge, not only does it give you practice for your future rounds, I can then help you write your blocks for that K. Plus it never hurts to make sure that I truly understand the K regardless of if I have read it before.
T – I love a good T-Debate, please actually have voting issues. I will gladly vote for it.
- I don't mind them. Make sure you have researched and understand the DA well
- Turns case and case solves are different arguments
- Quality analytical reasoning and counter-examples can undermine most DAs. Combining logical analytics with your evidence or faults in their evidence boosts the credibility of analytical indicts.
- I will not accept a perm in passing, it needs to be flushed out entirely by the 1AR. Otherwise, I can't vote for it no matter how much it's winning
- I love reasons as to why the CP is abusive from the Aff but I need a good reason as to why.
- Ensure that you flush out the link and really contextualize it to the Aff in this round.
- T is good
- make sure you don't forget to answer it in its entirety
- Affs should explain how reasonability impacts how I should decide the debate. Often, Affs win that reasonability is good but do not explain how that buffers/raises threshold for Neg offense
- I love a good Kritik debate, I have read - Psychoanalysis, Death, Preciado, Bifo, Info/Persuasion, Set Col, Cap and many more
- if you don't understand the K, don't read it
- I prefer if your K is contextualized to the topic and better yet to the Aff
- you need a strong link and the entire K needs to be explained
- please limit your overview to 45 seconds
- I love it
- make sure your aff turns FW
- please make sure you can explain why you're topical or not and own it
Weird Pet Peeves
- please disclose on the wiki
- i cannot handle people who are rude or mean in CX for the sake of being mean
- extinction is not a tag line
Be nice, have fun! Break a leg
Debated policy for Brooklyn Technical High School (2013-2016) and for Binghamton University (2016-2020). You can add me to the email chain at email@example.com
TLDR been out of debate for a while, have very little familiarity with the topic so please explain acronyms, topic specific knowledge, etc... You can probably run anything (nothing offensive) and I'll evaluate it. While I enjoy K debates more, I'm not particularly against debates about policies as I started out as a non-K debater. I prefer depth over breath and think line-by-line is important. Since debate is now on Zoom, please be very clear using changes in tone, inflection, etc to ensure that I am evaluating the arguments you want me to evaluate.
I'm just going to copy and paste a portion of Lee Thach's paradigm here because it basically summarizes how I evaluate debates:
"1. Clarity > Loudness > Speed.
2. Framing > Impact > Solvency. Framing is a prior question. Don’t let me interpret the debate, interpret the debate for me.
3. Truth IS Tech. Warranting, comparative analysis, and clash structure the debate.
4. Offense vs Defense: Defense supports offense, though it's possible to win on pure defense.
5. Try or Die vs Neg on Presumption: I vote on case turns & solvency takeouts. AFF needs sufficient offense and defense for me to vote on Try or Die."
Here are some of my other thoughts:
Kritiks: I mostly ran critical arguments including ones about anti-blackness and biopower. I like Ks and when good K debates happen. One thing that has changed for me in terms of Ks is that I want to hear that the K does "something" whatever that "something" is. Whether in round or external to the debate, please explain what that "something" is, why I should evaluate whatever the K does as "something," and how exactly the K does that thing.
FW: I would say that I'm probably 51/49 against framework. I think that it is sometimes valuable to discuss non-traditional affirmatives especially when the affirmative has given me reasons why their AFF is valuable to this year's resolution. I do enjoy framework for certain AFFs that are abusive/irrelevant. That said, my bias can be overcome with good debating (i.e. when standards/violations are super nuanced and when there are clear articulations/comparisons of each side's model of debate and why they're good/bad)
CPs/Piks: I love them. Flex your creativity as much as possible. I can also be convinced why particular CPs/Piks can be abusive.
DAs: I will evaluate all types of DA but just please have uniqueness and be very clear about your internal links. Contrary to popular opinion, I like politics DAs.
Miscellaneous: I like jokes and the like that make debates entertaining and enjoyable so if you can make me laugh I'll probably boost your speaks. Troll debates are cool too but only when the arguments actually apply and can sorta make sense.
Updated for Water Topic
E-Mail Chain: Add me (firstname.lastname@example.org). I do not distribute docs to third party requests unless a team has failed to update their wiki.
Experience: Damien 05, Amherst College 09, Emory Law 13L. I consider myself fluent in debate, but my debate philosophy is reflective of the fact that I debated in the 00s and may not align with current "meta" trends of the community. Fifth year as the Assistant Director at Damien.
Debate: I am open to voting for almost any argument or style so long as I have an idea of how it functions within the round and it is appropriately impacted. Debate is a game. Rules of the game (the length of speeches, the order of the speeches, which side the teams are on, clipping, etc.) are set by the tournament and left to me (and other judges) to enforce. Comparatively, standards of the game are determined in round by the debaters. Framework is a debate about whether the resolution should be a rule and/or what that rule looks like. Persuading me to favor your view/interpretation of debate is accomplished by convincing me that it is the method that promotes better debate (either more fair or more pedagogically valuable) compared to your opponent's.
Evidence and Argumentative Weight: Tech over truth, but it is always easier to debate well by using true arguments (and good cards). In-speech analysis goes a long way with me; I am much more likely to side with a team that develops and compares warrants vs. a team that extends by tagline/author only. I will read cards as necessary, including explicit prompting, however when I start reading evidence I read critically and will evaluate warrants. Arguments are only as good as their warrants -- if a card does not have the necessary warrants underlined/highlighted then I give them no greater weight than analytics. You are much better off with a few good well-highlighted cards than multiple bad and/or under-highlighted cards. Well explained logical analytics, especially if developed in CX, can beat bad/under-highlighted cards.
Topic Familiarity: I've regrettably lived through two previous water-related topics from the previous two decades (Marine Natural Resources in the 00s and Oceans in the 10s). I can't believe the community decided to go back for yet another round. I will enter the year with more familiarity than a brand new judge but not at the level of a judge who taught at camp. My professional background outside of debate is in law and administrative regulation, so I have very high technical proficiency for process counterplans and plan flaws.
Argument Selection: Run whatever you are most familiar and comfortable with. I believe it is better for debate that judges reward good debating over ideology, and I try my best to hold myself to this standard. I am aware of my biases and strive to remain neutral when rendering a decision. Almost all of my personal preferences can be overcome if you debate better than your opponents; I frequently vote for arguments that I would rather not exist in debate. Regardless of the style of debate you choose, your goal should be to debate in a way where you do the work for me. You can limit the chances that I intervene against your interests by 1) establishing what criterion the debate should be evaluated under and 2) demonstrating to me why you win under those criterion. Think of the 2NR and 2AR as competing pitches trying to sell me a fully formed product; pitch me the better ballot.
Argument by argument breakdown below.
Debating T well is a question of engaging in responsive impact debate. You win my ballot if you are the team that proves their interpretation is best for debate. This is usually done by proving that you have the best internal links (ground, predictability, legal precision, research burden, etc.) to a terminal impact (fairness and/or education). I love judging a good T round and I will reward teams with the ballot and with good speaker points for well thought-out interpretations (or counter-interps) with nuanced defenses.
I default to competing interpretations, but reasonability can be compelling to me if properly contextualized. I am generally more receptive to arguments that are able to quantify why the counter-interp is reasonable like "The aff interp only imposes a reasonable additional research burden of two more cases." I am generally not receptive to vague generalities such as "They have case specific literature, proves we are reasonably predictable."
I believe that many resolutions are sufficiently aff-biased or poorly worded that preserving topicality as a viable negative strategy is important. Therefore, I have no problem voting for the neg if I believe that they have done the better debating, even if I think that the aff is topical in a truth sense. I WILL vote on T-Substantial if I think the neg establishes that the aff is not substantial and that their interpretation of substantial is better for debate even without a clear briteline.
Fx/Xtra Topicality: I will vote on them independently if they are independently impacted, Otherwise they must be connected as internal links to your original violation and standards. I think it is better to introduce Fx/Xtra as early in the round as you perceive the aff to be a violator. Late breaking development is bad for the negative on topicality in front of me; I will give the 1AR more leeway to answer new extrapolations that I will give the 2AC leeway for undercovering Fx/Xtra.
* Framework / T-USFG
My ideological predispositions are negative. I try my hardest to vote for whoever defends their model of debate better and, consequently, I usually end up voting aff half the time. I have yet to judge a round where framework was debated "equally" such that my predispositions were the deciding factor over what was technically conceded.
For an aff to win framework in front of me, they must articulate and defend specific reasons why they cannot and do not embed their advocacy into a topical policy as well as reasons why resolutional debate is a bad model. "The USFG/system sucks" or "The topical version doesn't solve" are generally not convincing reasons in front of me -- I default to believing that you need to do more/better research vs. concluding that systems are bad (i.e. solvency deficits to the TVA aren't important if the neg wins that the TVA accesses your education/lit). I can, and do, vote on education outweighs fairness but it is the responsibility of the aff to make a case for why education outweighs or why I should prefer substantive fairness. Procedural fairness starts as an impact by default and you must prove otherwise.
For the neg, you have the burden of proving either that fairness outweighs the aff's education or that policy-centric debate has better access to education (or a better type of education). I am neutral regarding which impact to go for -- I firmly believe the negative is on the truth side on both -- it will be your execution of these arguments that decides the round. Contextualization and specificity are your friends. If you go with fairness, you should not only articulate specific ground loss but impact that ground loss. For example, rather than just saying that the use of non-USFG actors makes it impossible to research, argue that research is the internal link to both clash and a case debate which means fairness is key to both in-round and topic education. When going for education, I will also give great weight to well-developed arguments for why plan-based debate is a better internal link to positive real world change: debate provides valuable portable skills, debate is training for advocacy outside of debate, etc. Empirical examples of how reform ameliorates harm for the most vulnerable are extremely persuasive in front of me.
I value nuance a lot more than many other judges. I think that debate's largest educational impact is training students in real world advocacy and the best iteration of debate is debate that will teach people in the room something about the topic, including minutiae. Process is important. Consequently, I have much less aversion to voting on procedurals and theory than most judges. I think the aff has a burden as advocates to defend a specific and coherent implementation strategy of their case that the negative is entitled to test. I will absolutely pull the trigger on vagueness, plan flaws, or spec arguments as long as there is a coherent story about why the aff is bad for debate and a good answer to why cross doesn't check. Conversely, I will hold negatives to equally high standards to defend why their counterplans make sense and why they should be considered competitive with the aff.
That said, you should treat theory like topicality; there is a bare amount of time and development necessary to make it a viable choice in your last speech. Outside of cold concessions, you are probably not going to persuade me to vote for you unless you have done substantial argumentative development and clash on the theory flow. Also, if you go for theory... SLOW. DOWN. You have to account for pen/keyboard time. Do not spread a block of analytics like they were a card.
My defaults that CAN be changed by better debating:
- Condo is good, but should probably have limitations (especially regarding perf cons and skew).
- PICs, Actor, and Process CPs are all legitimate, but should prove competition (process CPs where the process is entirely intrinsic are NOT competitive absent specific solvency evidence - i.e. uncooperative federalism, consult, etc.)
- Consult CPs and Floating PIKs are bad.
- A specific solvency advocate generally proves competitiveness and non-abuse while the lack of specific solvency evidence indicates either the likelihood of a solvency deficit or a lack of competition.
- The aff is not entitled to all theoretical implementations of the plan (i.e. perm do the CP) just because they do not specify.
My defaults that UNLIKELY or CANNOT be changed:
- CX is binding.
- Lit checks/justifies (debate is primarily a research and strategic activity).
- OSPEC is never a voter (exception to a team fiating something contradictory to their ev or contradictions between different authors).
- "Cheating" is reciprocal (utopian alts justify utopian perms, intrinsic CPs justify intrinsic perms, and so forth).
- Real instances of abuse justify rejecting the team and not just the arg.
- Teams should disclose previously run arguments; breaking new doesn't require disclosure.
- Real world impacts exist (i.e. setting precedents/norms), but unverfiable behavior outside the room/round is not relevant.
- Condo doesn't automatically allow severance of the discourse/rhetoric attached to the offcase (it's one thing to test the aff from multiple perspectives, it's another to run hege impacts when you have a K with a reps links and the alt is to reject bad scholarship). You can win severance of your reps, but you must actually justify it. It is not a default entitlement from condo.
- ASPEC is checked by cross and the neg should ask. If the aff does not answer, the neg can subsequently win the round by proving moving target or link spikes. If the aff does answer and doesn't spike, then ASPEC is dead.
TL;DR: If you want to run the K because you have studied the critical academic scholarship seriously and have a coherent and contextualized argument for why this scholarship is relevant to the aff, then I am probably a good judge for you. I would much rather hear a good K than a bad politics disad. But if you run Ks to avoid doing specific case research and brute force ballots with links to the use of the state/fiat, then I am probably a bad judge for you. If you have me in the back for a planless aff vs. a K, there is an extremely high likelihood that you done your prefs incorrectly.
I have a high level of academic familiarity with basic critical lit, but only debate-level familiarity with higher level theory (Deleuze, Baudrilliard, etc.) However, even if I understand the scholarship, the kritik must be presented in an comprehensible fashion so that I can make sense of it as an argument in round. I will not make a K coherent for myself if was presented incoherently in the round.
Additionally, the quality of the literature and your mastery over it does not matter if the kritik is functionally deficient as a call for the ballot. A link is insufficient to win the K in front of me; I do not vote on non-unique impacts. A good contextualized link only proves relevance to the round. A complete K must give me a reason to reject the aff or prefer the alt. I do not have any biases or predispositions about what my ballot does or should do, but if you do not explain your alt and/or how my ballot interacts with the alt (or lack thereof) you will find that I have an extremely low threshold for treating the K as a non-unique disad. Alts like "Reject the aff" and "Vote neg" are fine so long as there is a coherent reason why beyond the link. If the alt is some actual action which solves back for the implications of the kritik, in the fiat world or the real world, the solvency process of the alt should be explained and contrasted with the plan. Links of omission are super uncompelling in front of me. Ks can solve the aff, but there is likely a fairness problem if they solve that problem by resulting in the aff. Floating PIKs pretty much never get my ballot unless the aff conceded that Floating PIKs are legitimate.
Affs should not be afraid of going for straight impact turns behind a robust framework press to evaluate the aff. I'm more willing than most judges to consider the merit in challenging kritik ideology head on rather than labeling your discourse as a link. I am also particularly receptive to arguments about pragmatism on the perm if you have empirical examples of progress through state reform that relate to your aff.
I value defense more than most judges and am willing to assign minimal ("zero") risk based on defense, especially when quality difference in evidence is high or the disad scenario is painfully artificial (i.e. the elections disad). I can be convinced by good analysis that there is always a risk of a DA in spite of strong defense, but I do not really care about how strong your impact is and how the risk is infinite when extinction is infinite after you straight up lost the link.
I think that research is a core part of debate as an activity, and good counterplan strategy goes hand-in-hand with that. The risk of the net benefit the neg must win is inversely proportional to how good the counterplan is. Generic PICs are more vulnerable to perms and solvency deficits so they carry a much higher threshold burden on the net benefit. PICs with specific solvency advocates or highly specific net benefits are devastating and one of the ways that debate rewards research and how debate equalizes aff side bias. Agent and process counterplans are similarly better when the neg can present a nuanced argument for why one agent/process is better than the aff's for a specific plan.
Because I do not think a 1AC plan text that fails to specify gives the aff default access to all theoretical implementations of the plan, I am super unfriendly to Perm Do the CP. The aff should know their case better and should want to take a debate on minutiae against the neg. Meanwhile the neg has an equally high burden to defend the coherence of a counter-advocacy (or the model of debate implied by their negative strategy). I will reject a counterplan for a structural defect or because the aff has effectively convinced me that the neg is debating in a way that is not just strategic but also fundamentally unfair. Process counterplans where the process is entirely intrinsic are not competitive and I have a very low threshold for rejecting them.
Superior solvency for aff impacts can be a sufficient net benefit for me to vote on the CP (either because of a conceded aff-only case take-out or turn, or because the CP solves better) so long as there's a reason to reject the perm.
I do not judge kick by default, but 2NRs can easily convince me to do it if condo has been established.
I'm a sucker for sufficiency framing and DA as a tie-breaker against structural violence impacts; the aff absolutely needs a solvency deficit or needs to field well-developed arguments about why an appeal to sufficiency framing itself means that the neg cannot capture the ethic of the affirmative's framing (and why that is important in the round).
Speaker Points: I feel speaker points are arbitrary and the only way to fix this is standardization. Consequently I will try to follow any provided tournament scale very closely. In the event that there is no tournament scale, I distribute speaks as if I was grading performances on a bell curve with 30 being the 99th percentile, 27.5 being as the median 50th percentile, and 25 being the 1st percentile. I'm aggressive at BOTH addition and subtraction from this baseline since bell curves are distributed around an average. Theoretically teams looking to break should be scoring above average by definition. Additionally, this scale is standardized across tournaments. By default, debaters on the national circuit will be above average compared to debaters who debate lay-style at local circuits. Points are rewarded for both style (entertaining, organized) and substance (strategic decisions, quality analysis, obvious mastery of nuance/details). I listen closely to CX and include CX performance in my assessment. Well contextualized humor is the quickest way to get higher speaks in front of me, e.g. make a Thanos snap joke on the Malthus flow.
Delivery and Organization: Your speed should be limited by clarity. I reference the speech doc during the debate to check clipping, not to flow. You should be clear enough that I can flow without needing your speech doc. Keep in mind that you will, by default, be less clear in Zoom. Additionally, even if I can hear and understand you, I am not going to flow your twenty point theory block perfectly if you spit it out in ten seconds. Proper sign-posted line by line is the bare minimum to get over a 28.5. I will only flow straight down as a last resort, so it is important to sign-post the line-by-line, otherwise I will lose some of your arguments while I jump around on my flow and I will dock your speaks. I also dislike long overviews that just get cross applied everywhere.
Bonus and Penalty Speaker Points: Because I feel it is a weakening aspect of debate, I want to incentivize debaters to do strategic and offensive research by awarding them with bonus speaks for what I consider "good strategy." On the neg that means that I should be able to tell that you have researched the plan thoroughly (i.e. hyper-specific counterplans/disads or a nuanced T or procedural objection vs. a generic actor/process CP plus a politics disad). Conversely, penalty to speaks if you try to hide ASPEC on T; penalty is doubled if you do not write out the ASPEC subpoint on T and try to sneak it through. On the aff that means being able to coherently defend your aff as a specific implemented policy/strategy rather than just being a "good idea." Specific plan texts with specific implementation backed by authors is vastly superior to the most generic phrasing possible that you can use for "plan text in a vacuum." I will also reward affs for running disads to negative advocacies. And by disads, I do not mean solvency deficits masquerading as disads. Hollow Hope or Court Capital on a courts counterplan is a disad; CP gets circumvented is not a disad.
Cross-X, Prep, and Tech: Tag-team CX is fine but it's part of your speaker point rating to give and answer most of your own cross. I think that finishing the answer to a final question during prep is fine and simple clarification and non-substantive questions during prep is fine, but prep should not be used as an eight minute time bank of extra cross-ex. I don't charge prep for tech time, but tech is limited to just the emailing or flashing of docs. When you end prep, you should be ready to distribute.
Accommodations: Feel free to ask for accommodations before or during round or email me ahead of time.
Post Berkeley 2021 Update:
I feel compelled to call out the blatant misogyny I've witnessed judging rounds recently. Those debaters who are outwardly presenting as male and being a jerk to your opponents, or partner, must stop. I've seen absolutely fantastic speakers who try their hardest to tool outwardly presenting females in debate, and I'm not here for it. I struggle with how to handle these situations when it's your partner and am likely to default to NOT dropping you but can make no promises. I default this way because it punishes your partner as much as it punishes you. I CERTAINLY am going to give you extremely low speaker points up to and including a zero. If you have issues with this activity being inclusive I would strongly encourage you to strike me. If you are doing this to another team we can call it a day, I'm not voting for you. When I see these things happen in round I'm going to call them out during the Oral RFD and put it on the ballot to ensure your coach sees it as well.
Add me to your email chain, but I don't plan to read what there unless evidence is debated or called into question during the round. I will post my email in the chat when I check in for the round.
If I am judging you there is a near certainty that I am volunteering to do this. I am not being financially compensated for my time. I am doing this because I genuinely like to judge. What I like is giving back to an activity that has given me everything and enabled the success I have in The Corporate World. I don't have a team/argument style/agenda that I am pushing. I am here to adjudicate a debate round, and hopefully offer some points of view about how you get better moving forward. Depending on where we are in the year I may offer topic-specific insights OR more general notions of things to try to do differently. I want to have fun judging, I want you to have fun debating, and I want to hear smart arguments.
When I debated my favorite judges were those that were straight forward about preferences and how they would ultimately adjudicate rounds when it was time to fill the ballot out. That being said, I am equally comfortable hearing your 6-minute politics link wall in the block as hearing your extrapolation about why reforming CJR props up The State and re-entrenches The State's agenda and movements within will be co-opted.
I am comfortable with you making arguments at the speed with which you are comfortable, as long as you are clear. My preference is to watch a debate at a high velocity of speaking to ensure the most high-quality arguments are made in the round. Given the fact that we are virtual please ensure that you are not moving at your fastest when reading procedural arguments including voters or high volume theory. Additionally, please ensure a clear transition between arguments as I will be switching to a different sheet of paper.
Tech over truth in the most macro sense of the concept; however, there are exceptions, and pointing those exceptions out without needing to cite an author to back you up is reasonable. If your parent knows the truth over tech in this micro argument then you are very likely good questioning it, disagreeing and moving on with your life. I haven't heard a lot of rounds on the CJR topic where this has come into question but is worth mentioning.
If my camera is off, I'm not listening, unless otherwise noted due to technical issues.
Please have your camera on unless you have extenuating circumstances which prevents that from happening.
Update post ASU: after doing some deep dives on speaker points in the current debate world in high school I have greatly recalibrated how I award speaker points. When I see a great debater give a great constructive and rebuttal I need that debater to be rewarded for that. The zeitgeist has changed, I've adapted. The below is true again on speaker points.
I likely have a lower threshold for high speaker points than other judges. I tend to view debate rounds in a silo and am not weighing your speech against the speech I heard Team X give at Blake last year. You don't need to give an all-time speech to get a 30 from me, you need to give flawless speeches to receive a 30 from me. You can do it, I believe in you. I have no concerns giving out a low point win and don't consider who won a debate round when determining speaker points. You earn bonus points for the following: Clearly having fun, being funny, making smart case arguments, not making generic link arguments (unless it's really just to make a T fairness/education question better), employing tact during CX with your opponents, and framing things consistently throughout the debate round.
Do what you are most comfortable doing in order to win a debate round. Do speak clearly, Do sign-post, Do be fair, Do have fun, Do make the kind of arguments that you have the most fun making that you believe will lead you to a win, Do tell me why you are winning as frequently as possible, Do tell me why the other team is not winning as frequently as possible, Do leverage Impact analysis- Probability and Magnitude are most compelling to me- as frequently as possible, and Do emphasize the important points by referencing back to them or even going as far as to tell me that this point/argument is what this debate round will be decided on at the end of the round!
I tend to view a debate round by every single line on the flow and find arguments about not responding to an argument that represents a line on the flow quite compelling assuming that it is explained why it is unique and why there is an impact. Additionally, each of those lines is likely to be offense or defense at the end of the day. I don't see Defense as things that tend to win many rounds but do tend to lose many rounds when not handled properly.
I am going to flow, I am going to read evidence that is called into question/debated and that argument is not settled during the round. On this note, I would encourage you to do the work for me. There is a good chance that you understand your evidence better than I do and clearly understand the framing of the intention of the author. If I am the one doing the work at the end of the round by needing to read evidence I am likely coming from a less authoritative position on the question at hand than you are. This should be a compelling reason enough for you to articulate why your evidence is better than the other team's evidence, why the context is more relevant, etc.
Things to know for Aff:
If you defend a plan it should be topical. The debate round should be where you decide what topical means; however, I generally do not find spending a disproportionate amount of time on a topicality argument as a compelling reason to vote negative. This means if the Neg goes for T in the 2nr and spends 30 seconds on it then it is not likely that you need to spend half of your 2ar telling me why I should not vote for T.
If you do not defend a plan you should put into context why you are not, or at the very least be prepared for the other team to make that argument. You are going to need to defend uniqueness and impact as to why Aff sans plan is good/preferable to a world where there is a plan.
I appreciate a 2A who leverages the 1AC as answers to arguments from the 1NC, the same for the 1AR, etc. Don't let the 1ac be the only time that you talk about your affirmative. That seems like a losing strategy.
If your plan/framework is not clear do not be surprised when the negative team makes a fairly unclear link to whatever you are advocating for and I find it compelling.
Performance and Project Affs- cool. Everything I explain here is applicable to you. It's your obligation to ensure I know what I am voting for, the role of the ballot in the round, is this an advocacy for the round proper and I should adjudicate only on the discourse in the round, or is your performance/project a grassroots movement that I should view as the start of something greater. And on and on. I'm using these are extremely rudimentary examples to help you understand what you need to do in order to compel me to vote for your aff.
Don't group and extend- Do offer clear impacts to the arguments that were dropped.
Things to know for Neg:
When I debated if I was going for T it isn't likely that I was going for much else if anything.
I can't recall a debate round where I gave a 2NR that only included a Disad, though I suppose it's a strategy.
I view K's and CP's fairly similarly as that they are each competing for my vote as an alternative to the affirmative. With this understanding I believe your CP and K need to be textually competitive, there should be a text no different than an aff plan text. Similar to an aff plan text, if you don't read one be prepared to engage in a theory debate around why. I'm happy to hear these rounds and adjudicate them.
I find Case arguments to be quite compelling though would prefer those arguments to tell an entire story. If the Aff is implementing a plan to double the funding for forensic science in the US and you are making an inherency argument.... you need to also be making an impact argument. What is the impact of this plan not being inherent and the Affirmative advocating for said plan?
When reading multiple off and you throw a PIC/K in somewhere please ensure that you give me a moment to process going from your second CP to the PIC to the Disad. Like, I get the advantage you may be trying to gain by throwing something in there and it literally being Text with no cards or Voters; however, I haven't found myself voting for blippy stuff in a long time. If you find yourself winning rounds with blippy theory, independent voting issues, or quick PICs often then I am likely not the right judge for your team.
You don't need to tell me to kick a CP/K, I am only voting aff is the advocacy/plan is better than the SQUO AND/OR the CP/K. Ultimately, if the debate round is not about a theory argument then you get the SQUO plus whatever other alternative world you are arguing for and the AFF gets their advocacy.
Don't group and extend-
DO NOT be mean/hateful/crass/disrespectful.
I do not have preconceived notions about debate rules with one exception noted below. Debate is generally a Finite Game with defined players and a defined outcome (win/loss) but I could be compelled in a round to view debate as an Infinite Game without identified players or outcomes. The meta concept of debate is an Infinite Game and as such I encourage you to think about moving beyond the box and not just thinking outside of the box.
EXCEPTION: I think that everything said in a debate round when a timer is running, aside from prep time, is binding and something I am going to flow. Feel free to make an argument and convince me otherwise.
Theory is something that should be treated like any other argument in that there should be some uniqueness, some linkage, and impacts. There needs to be impact calculus for my decision-making process. Conditionality is probably fine, plan-plan is probably..., but I can be convinced of almost anything in a debate round.
*Note on language criticisms* If you are going to make an argument in a debate round that leveraging a particular word, let's say "abuse" is bad and that I should use the ballot to punish the other team by voting against them for making this argument then you are going to need some evidence to articulate why. I don't find ad hoc blips about voting against a team for saying the word abuse very compelling, make this a position in the debate round. That being said, if you use language that is blatantly offensive in all manners of conversation there is a good chance I am not going to listen to anything else that you say- this means homophobic, genderphobic, racist, xenophobic, sexist, etc.
Given all of the above, you are going to be best served by doing the work for me. When the round is over you are going to have won the round if you told me why you won the round and why the other team did not. Write my ballot for me.
Please include me on the email chain: email@example.com
You’re also welcome to email me for whatever else as well.
I debated three years at Copper Hills, debated for a bit at Weber State under Ryan Wash. Mostly just judge these days as I quite frankly don't have the time/etc. to compete anymore.
definitely a K debater. I primarily ran fem/intersectional fem args and critiques of debate. I'm open up to any type of new argumentation
(Conflicts: Copper Hills High School)
yeah i like K debate but I'd rather you run what you're good at. you can literally run whatever you want. i do not care. but with that being said, I have a hiGH burden on you explaining whatever argument you choose to run. don't just assume i understand your theory (this is much more applicable to k debate over trad policy.) Write my ballot for me, please (what are you winning and why do you deserve to win?)-it makes everyone's life easier. Also, please be passionate about what you're doing- I don't understand why someone would do an activity that they spend hours over running something they don't care about.
(While I recognize my paradigm looks very K happy, a) i'm still down for a good policy round and b) most of the rounds I've judged this year have been policy so honestly, you do you)
For the Aff:
look in all honesty, the last time I ran a traditional policy aff was my junior year of high school for one tournament and then before that my novice sophomore year. With that in mind, no your aff doesn't have to have a plan text and no, it doesn't *technically* have to have any relation to the topic (though it is preferred).
If I don't understand what the K aff is or does, then I'm likely not voting on it. Y'all can't just say "K aff :)" and call it good.
K v K debates = :)
On that note, i'm real picky about the perm in a K v K debate so make sure you do enough work on it
In FW debates, K affs need to prove why debate is necessary for your specific methodology as well as prove that the educational/etc impacts of the aff are the most important thing to weigh in the round.
For topical affs: Contrary to what it may seem, I'm down with a good policy aff and traditional debates as a whole. However, I need some solid case debating, impact calc, etc. Alt causes and good case turns are also favored.
For the Neg:
pics: if you're going to take the aff away from the aff, tell me why that's a good thing and something that I can vote on.
I think the best K debates are ones that are specific and that have a meaning to them. I don't particularly like generics such as cap and security, but if it's done well I'll still vote on them. But I feel the best part about K debate is that you get to specifically show your individualism and passion within the debate space. I don't have a high burden on alt solvency so long as the link is strong and clearly explained. But with all of that being said, I’d still rather see a traditional policy debate than a poor K debate.
I actually really like topicality debates, my only comment for this is to make sure in your last speeches to give me clear voters, don’t expect me to just extend what you already said in your previous speeches. (For FW, I feel the TVA is especially important as it's your job to prove that the aff makes debate impossible. On that note, if you're negative and running fw- i will vote on it but PLEASE do more with it than what is average. spice it up a lil yaknow?)
Yes, love this, read it, but that also means you have to explain it!! Make sure that the performance doesn’t get dropped in the debate.
things I don't like: new affs bad, disclosure, speaks k, and prefs theory. I don't have any strong feelings about other theory args.
I base a lot of my speaker points off of CX and your presence in the round. Everyone does debate for their own reasons, so let that show. If you are memorable and if you are passionate about what you’re talking about, you’ll probably get higher speaks. I think cross ex is valuable, I will be paying attention to it. This means that you could be losing the round but be getting better speaks.
I feel like this goes without saying but…
Please don’t be racist, sexist, transphobic, homophobic, etc. there’s also no need to be overly aggressive. This is a space where everyone is supposed to feel safe and comfortable, not a space where they feel that they aren’t welcome.
Put me on the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org (yes I know).
TLDR I debate at Wichita State in college. I am a junior. I'm more of a policy person. I will vote on framework, I will vote for an aff without a plan. Probably more willing than most to listen to cheating neg strategies but I don't like process counterplans.
CFL/ NSDA notes. I went to both of these tournaments when I was in high school and realize there are good odds you, the other team, me, and the other judge(s) all have different opinions on how debate works. I will be receptive to whatever you want to do but I will always be flowing and make my decisions off of my flow. If you wanna make this a stock issues debate do it but I am gonna need you to outline how I should evaluate the debate because it won't be my default. The least helpful paradigm statement of "you do you but do it well" applies.
I ended up judging a lot of CJR debates and all I can really say is that the big affs are really cool and I think soft left affs are getting really boring. I tend to render decisions quickly and talk a lot after. Interrupt me if you have a question or I made you mad.
I debated at Kapaun Mt. Carmel (2018) in high school. I've been a 2n my whole career. I primarily research and read policy stuff.
- I try to hold myself to the same standard I expect out of judges when I am debating. I care a lot about debate and think it's an amazing activity. I cannot promise that I will always make the best decision, but I can promise that I will put as much effort as possible into that decision. Debates are hard and stressful and I don't think that asking a lot of questions constitutes "charging the mound." I get frustrated with decisions too and will do my best to help you work through that but at some point you just end up burning a lot of your own energy on something you cannot change. I won't take a post round personally.
- Read your framing page, but please answer the DA too. You can ignore the whole framing/ case mess that inevitably arises in the 2ar if you just strait turn the disad.
- If you clip you lose. If I catch it and the other team doesn't say anything I will still vote against you.
-Politics - Big fan. These debates, at their best, are usually about evidence quality. Strait turns are underrated - this goes for all DAs
- Mixed thoughts about judge kick. It’s probably fine but just please say it in the block
- Not a huge fan of T debates. I am not saying don’t go for it but I get very bored of judging the same T cards all year that no one agrees on the meaning of. Good debates are still good
- Anything but condo is a reason to reject the argument. I think condo is good but 2nrs get away with murder when “answering” condo
Ks vs policy affs
- I think 80% of the time when I vote for the K it is because I think it turns case.
- Really blippy framework debates bother me and if it’s a wash I usually just let the aff have the aff.
- perms are an aff argument. They can solve a lot of links.
- fairness is an argument and it can win debates. More of a clash person and not really a big “learning about the government good” person. I think we should learn about the government but I find it strategically underwhelming as an argument – it usually requires you to have already won case.
- I really do think about these debates in terms of competing interpretations. I like an idea of what the aff model looks like. This means that both teams should constantly be trying to illustrate what happens under their model AND their opponent's. I have certainly voted aff when they don’t extend a counter interp but I think that it will still increase the odds you lose tremendously.
K v K
- Not a great judge for these debates. I might know about both of your literature bases but probably will be clueless about how they interact. Obviously going for cap is fine.
- Framework arguments are always helpful
***April 2021 rewrite—there’s a pretty good chance something I say in my RFD is going to be on here somewhere.
I have had many circuit debate influences, including folks who lab led or otherwise taught me, my debate teammates, students I’ve coached, judges I’ve had, debaters I watched a lot, and many others. Some of the strongest include Debnil Sur (who taught me circuit debate), Vinay Ayyappan, Albert Li, Rafael Pierry, Dhruv Sudesh, Tyler Vergho, Abhishek Rengarajan, Taylor Brough, Amber Kelsie, Ken Strange, Rishab Yeddula, Devansh Taori, Joshua Joseph, and Michael Koo.
General Experience: I debated at Bellarmine in San Jose, CA. I traveled on the national circuit my junior and senior year debating with Vinay Ayyappan. I read K arguments on the circuit, went for policy strategies at tournaments like state/nationals, and debated stock issues in front of parents at local tournaments. I went far at the NSDA tournament and qualled to the TOC. In college, I briefly debated with Tony Hackett reading K arguments and qualled to the NDT my frosh year. This is my fifth year coaching at Bellarmine (where I’ve been the main coach for circuit debate) and I have primarily coached teams reading policy arguments. I have been both a 2A and a 2N.
Topic Experience: I have a good amount of experience with both the policy and K lit on the CJR topic.
1. Tech over truth. But...
2. Debate is subjective and arbitrary. I consider “dropped arguments are true” to be not particularly helpful. Every judge has a different threshold for what a sufficient warrant is and a different understanding of the implication of every argument. The response will be, “Limiting subjectivity/arbitrariness is still good.” I partially agree. There are different kinds of subjectivity/arbitrariness. Using my knowledge of a particular subject area to navigate a complicated debate seems good. Using my personal opinion on a particular subject area as the sole grounds to make my decision seems bad. In some cases, there is a clear consensus on how judges will evaluate an argument (e.g. dropped Topicality). If there’s a gray area you fear may not go in your favor, you’re best served being as specific as possible in explaining the argument and its implication. All of this being said, my threshold for what constitutes an argument is probably lower than the average judge.
3. I try to line up arguments on my flow despite flowing on a laptop. Please keep that in mind. Specificity in roadmaps is appreciated when needed (e.g. if you’re about to spend 3 minutes on the perm in the 2NC, let me know beforehand so I can add more cells).
4. I prefer final rebuttals that have substantial (not inefficient) overviews to frame the debate.
5. “Specific brightlines and warranted calls for protections (anytime) will be zealously adhered to”—Michael Koo. Your 2NR shouldn’t say “new 2AR analysis is bad,” it should say, “The 2AR can’t apply the uncertainty deficit to the announcement plank, the plank was introduced in the block with an explanation of why it solves certainty and the none of the 1AR uncertainty warrants assume announcement.”
6. Spin over evidence, although some issues require evidence more than others. If you really want to make evidence matter on a specific question, then tell me why. Smart analytics can save you the time it takes to read multiple mediocre cards.
7. I usually flow CX.
8. I don’t mind postrounding. I take a lot of time to decide and carefully think through my decisions, and I’m ready to defend them. A good faith engagement where you try to understand how I voted is probably best, but to be honest you can treat it however you like. Fair warning though (in case you didn’t know): most of you are bad at postrounding.
Speaker Points: I’ll roughly follow this scale.
29.4+ — the top speaker at the tournament.
29.2-29.3 — one of the five or ten best speakers at the tournament.
29.0-29.1 — one of the twenty best speakers at the tournament.
28.7-28.9 — a 75th percentile speaker at the tournament; with a winning record, would barely clear on points.
28.5-28.6 — a 50th percentile speaker at the tournament; with a winning record, would not clear on points.
28.1-28.4 — a 25th percentile speaker at the tournament.
27.8-28.0 — a 10th percentile speaker at the tournament.
1. Slow down in online debate.
2. Cheating means you will get the lowest possible points. You need a recording to prove clipping. If you mark a card, say where you’re marking it, actually mark it, and offer a marked copy before CX.
3. In general, debaters who do good line-by-line will get higher points in front of me. It’s not the only way to debate, but I find it tougher to resolve debates where there is less direct clash, and I think only a few debaters can effectively create clash without lining up arguments. If you think you’re up to the challenge then go for it.
4. Use specific language, don’t hide behind jargon. Sufficiency framing on CPs is incredibly powerful but is useless 95% of the time. Cite 1AC evidence to define the solvency threshold: “The threshold established by their X evidence is that the US needs a significant concession on prolif to China. This means the aff winning they’re a bigger concession doesn’t matter because the CP is sufficient to get China to the negotiating table.”
1. I like watching T debates, but they’re kinda weird on the CJR topic.
2. I will evaluate T through interpretations. However, consider Ken Strange’s refrain, “The negative must show that the affirmative interpretation is bad for debate.” This seems like a higher burden than how competing interpretations is usually understood (e.g. “their interp is slightly larger so any risk of limits means you vote neg”). The articulation of reasonability that will persuade me is that the substance crowdout generated by T debates outweighs the difference between the two interps. Note that reasonability is about the interps, not the aff. It means the aff gets their interp comparison offense plus substance crowdout as bonus offense. Quantify how much substance crowdout matters in the debate (for example, it matters more if topic education is a relevant impact in the debate). Also, the risk of substance crowdout is higher if there’s a strong aff predictability argument (because one implication of aff predictability is causing more T debates). Debate all of this out in round.
3. Relatedly, T is a negative burden which means it is the neg’s job to prove that a violation exists. In a T debate where the 2AR extends we meet, every RFD should start by stating clearly what word or phrase in the resolution the aff violated and why. If you don’t give me the language to do that in your 2NR, I will vote aff on we meet.
4. I observe a lot of grammar issues in both T and competition debates. For example, two things being distinct doesn’t mean they’re exclusive. I’m not going to go through all the common examples I’ve observed here, but if you’re the one initiating one of these debates, be especially thoughtful and precise about your language and your logic.
5. Debatability matters a lot on T, but the definition needs to meet some basic quality threshold (the criminal justice is distinct from criminal law interp probably doesn’t meet it, but that requires good debating by the aff to establish). This is best impacted by aff predictability.
6. Functional limits, aff predictability, and reasonability are under-utilized by the aff.
Theory and Competition
1. I’m probably more willing to listen to a theory debate than most judges, but...
2. Theory blocks are terrible. Theory blocks spread at top speed are even worse. Theory blocks spread at top speed over Zoom are so bad that you just shouldn’t bother.
3. I largely concur with what Rafael and Tyler say about theory and competition on their philosophies. I’ll list a few key points below.
4. Just like with T, both teams should think carefully about what the interpretation and violation actually are. The burden is on the team advancing the argument.
5. Make relevant cross applications from other theory arguments and topicality.
6. Dropped theory arguments are an easy out, I won’t evaluate the substance if I don’t need to. I’m not going to feel better or worse about my decision depending on which team was ahead on substance.
7. Positional competition is hard to justify unless the aff very clearly grants it.
8. Going for competition is generally better than going for theory.
9. Limited intrinsicness (either functional or textual) is probably best to check against any number of “artificial” CPs. But there are also convincing neg arguments about the bad practices this justifies, so it’s a debate to be had.
1. A lot of aff teams simply do not work hard enough to generate deficits to various counterplans. Imagine the political blowback as a result of invoking X random political process (see parole CP...). You think that would be good for the business confidence scenario in your 1AC? If you’re struggling to apply your advantages in this way, then write more strategic advantages. 2As should be thrilled in the absence of specific neg ev applying the CP’s process to the aff. You then get a ton of leeway to spin deficits and the neg will struggle to push back.
2. Presumption goes to less change. Debate what this means in round. Otherwise, it goes aff in the event of an advocacy.
3. Decide in-round whether I should kick the CP.
1. There is such a thing as zero risk. I think about this like I think about significant figures or the signal-to-noise ratio.
2. Make sure that turns case arguments are actually turns case arguments.
3. I like substantial impact turn debates (heg/dem/war/etc.). Organization is obviously a concern there, try to group the debate early on.
4. Minimize overviews, put as much as you can on the line by line.
K’s vs. Policy
1. All debate is storytelling, but K debate especially so.
2. I’m fairly well versed in most common K’s.
3. One common reason affs lose is by being too defensive. Think about how your heg advantage interacts with a settlerism K.
4. Overview length needs to be well justified, I generally will tell you that it should have been smaller. If you can speak for 3 minutes and explain every issue in the debate clearly without line by line, go for it. But most of us can’t do that very effectively.
5. “Recognize when it’s a horrible idea to kick the alt”—Albert Li.
6. Framework is a critical part of many K’s. I’m not “over framework” like a lot of judges. How I should "weigh the aff" versus the K is rarely self evident. I don’t mind a little bit of arbitrariness in a framework interp if you are instructing me clearly on how to evaluate your offense versus their offense. But really think about how your arguments interact. I’ve seen neg teams make the argument “reps shape plan implementation” and then non-ironically explain that as a reason to ignore plan implementation, which makes absolutely no sense. If the neg wants me to devalue plan implementation, then your arguments should actually be reasons why prioritizing evaluating plan consequences is bad. Treat framework less like a theory argument and more like a substantive one.
7. If the neg’s link offense centers on evaluating plan consequences, then I will have to evaluate the positive consequences of the plan as well.
8. The perm is overrated as the basis for affirmative strategy, but it is almost always a no-cost option you can include somewhere in the 2AR.
9. When applicable, the perm double bind can be a powerful aff argument. There are some cases it clearly doesn’t apply (for example, if the K is a very direct impact turn to the aff, or if there’s a robust neg framework argument). However, if you are reading a Cap K alt centered entirely on workers movements against an aff that reduces police funding, you need to explain why the plan prevents those movements from being successful. Otherwise, the perm will capture the offense of the K and whatever contingent offense the plan has.
Framework vs. K Affs
1. I’ve been on all sides of this debate.
2. Framework debates, like K debates, are much more about storytelling than about technical concessions because the implications of those concessions will often not matter in the grand scheme of things. This is particularly important for 2Ns to remember.
3. An impact is an outcome that is self evidently bad enough to matter. Pick the most strategic version of framework depending on your audience and your opponent. When I’m your audience, you can convince me that many things are bad enough to matter, ranging from fairness to skills. The teams I coach usually have: 1) a more procedural clash thesis impact, 2) an impact about how clash over the content of the topic is particularly educational. But stick to what you’re good at.
4. Impact comparison. If the aff’s model makes it substantially harder for the neg to engage but the neg’s speech act was problematic, which way do I vote?
5. All this discussion of “TVA,” “switch-side debate,” and “ground versus our aff” tends to miss the point. These are merely vehicles for each team to explain what debates under their model actually look like and why they are better than debates under the other team’s model. As the neg, you should explain to me what specific debates occur under your model (i.e. give examples of affs and neg strategies against them) and why that solves your impacts and theirs. Perhaps the debates we have where we critique specific policy reforms are better for critical education than comparing structural theories. As the aff, you should explain to me why the specific debates they say occur under their model don’t solve your or their offense. Perhaps the Courts CP doesn’t prepare us to engage movements and sidesteps discussion of the substance of the aff. The aff should describe debates under their model in concrete terms, not just list off structural K’s as neg ground and make vague references to “DA’s to our method.” It is odd to me that framework debates lack discussion of the specific kinds of debates that actually happen in each world.
6. Relatedly, “TVA solves” doesn’t answer every aff argument, especially if they have a K of your performance.
7. You don’t need to counter-define every word in the resolution. The justification for this is functional limits, which is an under-utilized aff argument in framework debates. For all practical purposes, I probably don’t need to worry about insert big policy school reading a new K aff every debate. I also probably don’t need to worry about an aff arguing the state government of Alabama should enact criminal justice reform. However, I may have to worry about every journal article advocating a mindset shift in the context of criminal justice turning into a K aff (depending on what the aff interp is). Everyone is best served by being realistic about their impacts and not jumping straight to hyperbole.
8. Policy T and Framework aren’t perfectly analogous. A world without courts affs (endpoint of T-enact) is far more plausible than a world without planless affs (endpoint of T-USFG). Some aff arguments (like the Floodgates DA) take advantage of this. It’s at the very least a conversation worth having and something all teams going for framework should reflect on.
9. Collapse down in the 2NR. You are more likely to lose because you insufficiently answered aff offense and didn’t compare impacts than you are because you didn’t extend an additional impact.
10. If a team going for framework also reads 5 contradictory off in their 1NC, chances are you can concede claims on some of the other off to undermine their framework argument.
K’s vs. K Affs
1. These were my favorite as a debater.
2. Debate more about what the perm means. Affs need to be held to a higher standard for explaining the perm. In fact, you should be explaining the perm as of the 1AC. What I mean by that is that you should be setting a framework for how I think about your advocacy/performance in relation to other advocacies/performances. Residual link analysis on the perm makes a ton of sense in policy rounds but doesn’t make sense in most K v K debates. Don’t discuss the perm as an abstract theoretical question, discuss it in the context of the specific debate you are having. These thoughts are vague, debate it out on your own terms.
3. It’s not enough that disagreements exist between your literature bases. Explain to me why that means the aff is undesirable.
Soft-Left Affs vs. Policy
1. The main difficulty for many of these affs is answering CPs, not DAs.
2. For most affs, the best way to debate framing in front of me is to treat it like a well-contextualized Security K. Rather than saying war in general is unlikely and that security reps in general are bad, construct a compelling critique of the particular DA scenario(s) they’re reading. Just like with the Security K, this involves winning significant defense to the DA itself. If executed really well, the K becomes sufficiently offensive and this can help you get out of a CP that solves all or most of your aff.
3. In general both sides end up agreeing consequentialism is good. This is fine for the aff as long as you are doing the above to generate offense against the DA.
4. For the neg, it seems more strategic to weigh 7-8 billion against the aff instead of “extinction is categorically first,” but it’s your call.
1. If you correctly use the term “nchtr” in round, you will get a 0.2 speaker point boost. Don’t use it unless you’re gonna do it properly.
2. Email ani dot prabhu98 at gmail dot com if you have questions.
3. Please put me on the email chain and send cards in a Word doc (not in the body of the email).
4. Emailing isn’t prep but don’t take forever.
5. I concur with Tyler’s policy for re-highlightings. Essentially, the closer a re-highlighting comes to being a new argument that you’re advancing, the more likely it is that you should be reading it instead of inserting it.
hi im irshad. u can call me judge, irshad, whatever... it is irrelevant to me. the main takeaway is that i have a drastically different view of the judge-debater relationship than most people in the community: i think it is the job of the judge to adapt to what the debaters are talking about, and honestly i think im gonna be way better at doing that then u are at adapting and trying to please me. in fact, id recommend u to not. i have some opinions that diverge quite heavily from the norm, however i am (at least a little) self-aware, and i can understand how people generally debate. i have no biases in terms of what u go for, whether its topicality, framework, performance, critique, counterplan with net benefit, disadvantage, impact turn, solvency turn, inherency, or even presumption, i can evaluate all of those and make a coherent decision no matter what if u give judge instruction in ur final speech. with that being said, if u do want to take into account stuff for me, here's stuff u maybe should:
do not be racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, islamophobic, ableist, or anything of that nature. it will annoy me and make me less likely to vote for u, and i will evaluate arguments about why what u did warrants a rejection if its brought up. this also means things like: nonblack ppl shud refrain from using aave. and, i think there are certain arguments (afropessimism and nommo are the two examples that jump to mind) that should only be deployed by black debaters. if no one arguing on ur team/side is black and these arguments are introduced into the debate by ur team/side, i will be unhappy. also note im not trying to get into the business of authenticity testing either or determining what black is. i am just saying, if ur not black, pls do not run those arguments. if u are, idc u do u.
i am a muslim who has grown up in post-9/11 america which means i have experience with being labelled a terrorist by ppl around me before i ever even had grandiose thoughts on political systems or even knew what those were. this means i feel some type of way when ur impact scenario is some random shit to stop terrorism. please. id like to leave that in the past. i probably wont vote for us heg good. i cud vote on cap good.
other than that, my biggest deviation from the norm is that im truth>tech. let me explain. obviously techne matters, please do respond to their arguments, but in my opinion winning the overall truth claims of the round does far more for u than being super technical. by truth, i dont mean the capital t truth. it is not "whoever i deem right on the issue" auto-wins, that's obviously interventionist; i mean that debates typically come down to a few nexus question(s) so being ahead there in the final rebuttals and doing good framing will help u far more than any single argument on the line by line or however u organize the debate. theyre interconnected, u just have to realize how much each argument gets u.
just debate and have fun. i would like to have this debate be a safe, anxiety-free zone. i get that it is virtually impossible to make debaters feel no anxiety... as it is a debate... i understand how people feel during a debate... but still, be comfortable and do not worry too much. dont worry, u will do great. in short, i do not care what u run so much as how u run it. have fun.
!UPDATE FOR TREVIAN 2020!:
I have judged all of one round on this topic thus far but I do have plenty of friends who keep me in the loop with the current resolution and all that. However, do keep in mind my familiarity with the current resolution' metagame is extremely limited!
Please call me Kat (she/her).
Put me on the email chain, please: email@example.com
I debated for four years at Bronx Science (2016-2020), and I got three bids to the TOC my senior year if qualifications matter to you when you select judges.
I was pre-dominantly a K debater on both the aff and the neg but that has made me familiar with all kinds of "policy" arguments too so I would say I'm a good judge for any kind of debate (but probably best for left v left).
I presume aff after the 1AC and then the way the round boils down will, potentially, change my ballot from that default point. Also, I read evidence after rounds if something is heavily contested but your speaks will be way better if you have actual warranted analysis/extension in your speeches.
I will vote on any argument that isn't racist, anti-queer, etc and I am definitely persuaded that reps that are racist or anti-queer are a-priori voting issues.
Not to snitch on myself, but I do have a shockingly terrible poker face (do with that information what you will).
The rest of the paradigm are exclusively my preferences and personal debate opinions and they do not effect at all which arguments I vote for, if you won on the tech then you won the round. But if judge adaptation is important to you or if you like hearing former debaters rant about debate then here you go !
Exception: I'm not voting for genocide of minorities good. I can't believe I have to explicitly say this in my paradigm but some rounds I judged on the Arms Sales topic have demonstrated the necessity of this line. Like feel free to read Spark/Wipeout but not "the genocide Saudi Arabia is conducting in Yemen is good".
Kritiks (and K affs)
I don't "hack" for arguments, but I LOVE K debate. If you're a K team please pref me 1 (I promise I'll be a good judge for a left v left round).
And don't feel afraid to go for something far out or edgy, I've gone for all kinds of critiques from absurd "Franken-Ks" to the lovely cap K to reading Death Ks with Bataille and Antonio 95 on case. The critiques I personally know best are psychoanalysis, cap, queer and trans theory, and Moten (mostly Undercommons but also para-ontology anti-Blackness Ks).
Note to the "policy side" of clash of civs debates: Ks (on the neg) aren't cheating, K affs are cheating but I don't think that's a bad thing. Obviously this is not a set in stone opinion but that's my pre-disposition (that, again, does not effect how I evaluate the round).
If you read a K I know I will give you a lot of (helpful and random) thoughts after the round so, please read a K!
I think I've been unfair to DA and CP debates in the past but actually I've come to understand that these can actually slap (especially against a K aff). But please don't make it ridiculous and unflowable, I hate that and rounds I've watched/judged like that have made me hate these arguments in the past.
Use as little jargon/abbreviations as possible and also please make sure you have a real internal link chain since I'm typically on the side that neg loses a lot to not having an internal link chain that's even tangentially based in reality.
K affs should always K the DA in my opinion, it's such a good method, but otherwise I typically like aff strategies that attack internal links or go for impact turns (prolif is definitely good lol).
For CPs, just make sure you articulate a clear net benefit and try to keep your CP constant throughout the round (adding seven new planks in the block usually throws me off more than it throws off the aff, just saying).
I'm probably more receptive than most judges to (aff and neg) condo bad but you need to actually prove they violate and articulate creative impacts.
I ran a K aff for like all of high school but I will vote neg on T-USFG framework if the aff is behind on technical concessions. In general, arguments like "break the rules, instant lose" or "jurisdictional issues" or a procedural fairness standard without a warrant to why debating the K aff is procedurally unfair will make me groan immensely but, again, if the aff drops it I'll vote for it to my chagrin.
I don't think any of the negs generic arguments like limits or procedural fairness are intrinsically good (like what does that even mean) but I do think that the aff should be related to the resolution in some way. In fact, affs that are resolutional but have a creative way to engage/enact the resolution are super cool and I think are pretty topical (but yeah yeah I can be persuaded whatever). Also state good/key/essential is a way better argument than "you made the debate impossible by reading a K aff" because I find that increasingly the teams that make that argument are better resourced and have a specific neg and are just cheating with FW (how's that for a turn of fate).
Arguments that you win on the tech but are really horrendous or ones that you shouldn't have gotten away with will probably tank your speaks so just don't run those (or do I honestly don't care you'll still win).
Lowell '20 l UCLA '24
Yes, email chain: zoerosenberg [at] gmail [dot] com, please format the subject as: "Tournament Name -- Round # -- Aff School AF vs Neg School NG"
Background: I was a 2N for four years at Lowell, I qualified to the TOC my senior year and was in late elims of NSDA. I don't debate in college due to a lack of policy infrastructure. I now help out at Damien, and am involved in the team's strategy so I have a good sense of arguments being read on the circuit.
GGSA/State Qualifier: I will still judge rounds technically, as one does for circuit style. However, I believe adaptation is one of the most important skills one can get out of debate so I encourage you to speak slowly, especially with parents on the panel.
Tech before truth. It's human nature to have preferences toward certain arguments but I try my best to listen and judge objectively. All of the below can be changed by out-debating the other team through judge instruction and ballot writing. Unresolved debates are bad debates.
Speed is great, but clarity is even better. If I'm judging you online please go slightly slower, especially if you don't have a good mic. I find it increasingly hard to hear analytics in the online format.
Be smart. I rather hear great analytical arguments than terrible cards. I generally think in-round explanation is more important than evidence quality.
I'm very expressive, look at me if you want to know if I'm digging your argument!
Call me by my name, not "judge".
Debnil Sur taught me everything I know about debate so check: https://www.tabroom.com/index/paradigm.mhtml?search_first=debnil&search_last= for a better explanation of anything I have to say here.
What arguments does she prefer? I go for mostly policy arguments and feel more in my comfort zone judging these debates. That being said, I moved more to the left as my years in high school winded to a close and am down to judge a well-defended kritikal affirmative. I think debate is a game but it's a game that can certainly can influence subjectivity development. Note: I would still prefer to judge a bad policy debate, over a bad kritikal debate.
Online Debate Adaptions
I have judged close to 60 online debates. Here are some things you can do to make the terribleness of online tournaments a little less terrible.
1 - I really would like your camera to be on, wifi permitting. Debate is a communicative activity and your persuasion increases by tenfold if you are communicating with me face to face.
2 - Please use some form of microphone or slow down by 20%. It is really hard to catch analytics with poor audio quality.
3 - The benefits of sending analytics vastly outweigh the cons of someone having your blocks to a random argument.
4 - If it takes you more than a minute to send out an email chain I will start running prep. I genuinely don't understand how it can take up to five minutes to attach a document to an email chain lmao
K Affs: I read a kritikal affirmative all of senior year but on the negative went for framework against most K affs. I don't have a definite bias toward either side. However, kritikal affirmatives that defend a direction of the topic and allow the negative to access core topic generics jive with me much more than simply impact turning fairness and skirting the resolution.
Framework: Fairness is an impact, but not a great one. By the 2NR please don't go for more than two impacts. Having a superior explanation why the TVA resolves their offense and doing impact comparison will put you in a good spot. Switch-side debate is a silly argument, but feel free to convince me otherwise.
Neg: I know the lit behind security, neolib, psychoanalysis, and necropolitics. Make of that which you will. I'm not going to be happy listening to your 7 minute overview. Explain the thesis of the kritik and contextualize the link debate to the aff and I will be quite happy. Winning framework means you probably win the ballot. And as Debnil puts it, "I believe I'm more of an educator than policymaker, which means representational critiques or critiques of debate's educational incentive structure will land better for me than most judges."
Competing interps or reasonability? Competing interps. Asserting a standard like limits needs to be warranted out, explain why your impacts matters. Have a clear vision of the topic under your interp, things like case-lists and a solid understanding of arguments being read on the circuit are important. T before theory. Also a good topicality debate is my favorite thing ever.
Is condo good? Yes, most of the time. Things like amending stuff in the block, kicking planks, fiating out of straight turns are sketchy. But in most debates, unless it's dropped or severely mishandled I lean neg. To win condo the affirmative must have a superior explanation why multiple advocacies made that debate unrecoverable. Going for condo only because you're losing on substance is not the move. Hard debate is good debate. Other theory preferences (I-Fiat, Process CPs, etc.) are likely determined by the topic. However, they're almost always reasons to reject the argument not the team.
Policy stuff? I like it. Link centered debate matters the most, so focus on uniqueness and link framing. Do comparative analysis of the warrants in your evidence. I really dislike bad turns case analysis, link turns case arguments will sit better with me. I think most types of counterplans are legitimate if the neg wins they are competitive. I'll judge kick if you tell me to do it.
Make a funny joke about anyone on the Lowell squad, Lisa Kopelnik, Brendan Tremblay, or Debnil Sur and I'll boost you +.1 speaks
Green Valley '20
Email Chain and Questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
TLDR: Tech>truth, will read evidence if it's close but the quality of debating matters much more, hence this paradigm reflects my leanings, not rules. I don't have any knowledge about the high school topic so please don't assume I know what you're talking about. Impact calculus and judge instruction could mean the difference in winning or losing.
K AFFs v Framework: If the 1AC has nothing to do with the resolution, I am not the judge for you. Successful K AFFs will sit and develop core pieces of offense and must have a counter interpretation that resolves them. If you assume I know what you're talking about when you explain huge theories, it will not be in your favor.
K: If you don't solve your framework offense, I'll weigh the aff against the alt and the links. You will be more successful reading links to the plan and having unique impacts and turns case to each of those links. More clash, less "it was in the overview". Take the time to apply specific parts of the overview to specific arguments.
Framework: This was the only 2NR I would go for against K AFFs. Impact comparison is crucial, I am very easily convinced by the argument that the ballot can only remedy so many things. *Correction for Cade Cottrell - he had to beg me to stop going for the Body PIC against K affs at the beginning of my junior year. I think PICs against K affs is an underrated strategy.
Theory: Conditionality is good unless its egregious. Conditional planks are bad. Riders DAs are bad. The rest are debatable. If you go for theory when the debate is close your speaks will show.
CP: I won't judge kick unless I am told to. Smart, analytical CPs are fine if intuitive or true but they hold more weight if you read the evidence.
DA: Turns case is game changer.
T: No biases here. I went for T in most of my 2NRs, but I am now a 2A, and I can see myself voting either way.
Heritage Hall, Class of 2020
Amherst College, Class of 2024
email@example.com (I want to be on email chains)
TLDR for Pre-Round Prep:
Be nice and have fun!
Policy aff's are great. I prefer strong internal link chains over 6 impacts. Make sure to actually clash on framing debates.
K aff's are great. Make them have something to do with the topic. Be clear about your mechanism from the 1AC.
Framework is great. Fairness is a weak impact, but a strong internal link. Please organize your speeches well.
K's are great. Make sure your links apply to the plan or reps of the 1AC.
DA's: Read specific links to the aff and detailed internal links to make me happy
CP's: Read em. Aff specificity is great, but a huge multi plank advantage counterplan that solves the whole aff is awesome if you can justify it. I hate ConCon and RegNeg, but I like topic-specific process counterplans.
T: Yes, if you actually think your interpretation is reasonable for the topic.
Debate is a great place to challenge yourself and have fun while doing it... the first thing that I want to see is that everyone is enjoying themselves and having a good time. Some debaters think that they're too good or cool to afford their opponents respect and decency in-round: if this is you, I will not be a good judge to have in the back of your round. We are all here to have fun and get better, so if you are jeopardizing that in any way, don't expect me to be as willing to vote for you.
If you have any questions, don't be afraid to shoot me an email or ask before the round starts. I'd be happy to clarify anything on this paradigm or offer you any other insight that I might have forgotten to include here.
In the world of online debating, make sure that you are slowing down and emphasizing more. It's hard to hear arguments coming at 400wpm over a zoom call, especially if there are connection issues. Plus, I flow on my computer so I can't see you while you're speaking - all non-verbal cues will have to come from your vocal inflection... make sure you're being clear about where you are in a line of arguments.
Tech over truth, for the most part. I try to stay as impartial in every round and evaluate things as objectively as I can within the bounds of the information that the round has provided. The only time tech over truth doesn't hold up is when you have insufficiently explained your argument - if you don't have a warrant or explanation to back up your claims, I won't feel comfortable voting for something.
I debated for Heritage Hall from 2016-2020, was coached primarily by Bryan Gaston, Jasmine Stidham, and Joshua Michael, won the Oklahoma state championship as a sophomore with a senior partner (Vyas Venkataraman) and won NSDA nationals in Policy as a senior with a junior partner (Sam Ring). I ran mostly policy arguments for my first two years of debate as a 2A, but started leaning more toward K debate my junior year as a 2N. My senior year I was pretty flex... we read a K aff and I went for several different K's on the neg, but I also went for Process CP's and Heg DA's. You can really run anything in front of me and I'll be pretty receptive to hearing it.
I really don’t have much to talk to y’all about. Just do your thing. So many teams don’t actually utilize their case, let alone their 1AC.
If you read a soft left aff (as I imagine most will on the CJR topic), make sure your framing page doesn't just look like an extension of your 1AC authors and that's it. You need to engage the other team... I've seen way too many debates come down to a wash on the framing page which is unfortunate since it guides so much of how I will evaluate the rest of the round.
If you want to run a planless aff and actually have a legitimate reason to do so (There’s a reason you cannot affirm the resolution, not just “But Bataille!!!”), I’m here for it. I love a well thought out K aff executed strongly.
That being said, I did like to go for, and will vote on, framework. You should have other strategies ready to go, and I don’t think you can read the same framework argument against every K Aff, but it’s still a good argument to fall back on if you have nothing else. I think that I actually lean slightly to the aff on the issue of framework debates: it will take you just a bit more work, but it won’t be too much. I'm predisposed to think fairness is an impact (that's magnitude can be debated) but could be persuaded otherwise.
Planless Aff’s vs. K’s – Excellent, if there are links. These are my favorite rounds to judge when executed well. Just make sure you actually link to their argument, not just the overarching lit base the K aff comes from (Not all links to SetCol lit apply to every SetCol K aff, for ex.) Also, I know the debate of whether or not the aff gets a perm can be a messy one, so you tell me how to evaluate it. I will probably lean to the aff getting a perm, but if you tell me otherwise, you can sway me.
I’m a pretty big fan of a lot of K literature. That being said, if your link is “STATE BAD” without any contextualization, then I don’t want to hear it. Otherwise, if you have links contextualized to the aff, it will probably be good in front of me.
Well structured, technical K debate that emphasizes key issues in the round is vastly preferred over more nebulous "cloud clash" K debate with massive overviews. I don't think I've heard a single K that needed more than a 45-second overview. If you compartmentalize the flow cleanly into the Overview/Framework/Links/Impact/Alt, I will be very happy and it will be a much cleaner round to evaluate.
In high school, I ran all kinds of K's, ranging from vanilla cap K's to a Deleuze and Guattari K Aff my senior year. You can run almost anything in front of me, but make sure that you still explain your arguments. I'm familiar with the language and scholarship of DnG, and am familiar with the lit bases around Cap, SetCol, Antiblackness, Reps K's, etc.
You will almost never be able to persuade me that the aff doesn't get a perm. You can debate whether or not that permutation is possible or desirable, but I will almost always grant the aff that they can permute the K in some form or another. The solvency of that permutation is another question that should be debated accordingly.
Presumption flips when there is a K (with an alt) in the 2NR.
Impact Turns -
Yes. Please. Big case debates are awesome, but make sure you're doing it cleanly and clearly. Dedev is great, Heg bad is solid. Wipeout and Spark are ehhhhhhhhh... a bit more annoying, but I could be persuaded to vote for it if you debate it well enough. Just don't be cheeky about it.
The more specific to the aff, the better. I’m not the biggest fan of the politics DA (every debate sounds the SAME) – I know they are strategically important and useful, but I just wish the debates didn’t all sound identical. Please contextualize your arguments.
I'm a sucker for a well explained internal link scenario, and good impact analysis. Make sure your impact calculus is contextualized, and specific to the internal link scenario the aff has presented.
I think that you should craft your CP’s to be nuanced and specific to the aff. Same as the politics DA, I know there is strategic value in generic CP’s like States on the Education topic and Parole on the Immigration topic, but it’s just so awesome when the CP is hyper-specific to the Aff. You won’t be docked for reading generic CP’s, but you will be rewarded for reading specific ones.
I ran a lot of topic-specific process-type CP's in high school, so don't be afraid of running them in front of me. The key word is topic-specific: I don't enjoy process counterplans that have nothing to do with the topic like ConCon and RegNeg. Instead, read something like the Deliveries CP from arms sales or the Parole CP from Immigration. Also be prepared to defend yourself on the perm and theory debates. If you know how Stephen Pipkin evaluates CP's, you know how I evaluate them too.
Presumption flips when there is a CP in the 2NR.
I love a good topicality debate, but only when the evidence is good. Make sure your authors are contextual, have the intent to define, and clearly describe what you're trying to define.
Make sure you impact out why limits are important. Too many teams just go for "their interp is unlimiting and steals neg ground" which is just an internal link to some other impact... make sure you finish your internal link chain and actually give me something to vote on.
Competing interps over reasonability, unless they're just on the right side of truth. I tend to side with the argument that abuse is based off what the Aff's interpretation justifies, not necessarily what they do.
Filter - If it's a new aff, there is a much higher threshold for me to vote on theory because the neg has to see what sticks.
1AR’s – you gotta extend theory for a bit of time (45 seconds at a BARE minimum) if you want it to be 5 mins of the 2AR. Make sure you’re extending it strategically.
Conditionality – It’s generally good. That does not mean that the neg can be abusive, nor does it mean that I won’t vote on it if it is debated well. Probably up to 2 condo is good… more is a bit sketchy. This is the ONLY REASON TO REJECT THE TEAM.
Conditional Ethics - Usually bad. Teams don't read condo ethics as much as I would like them to... if a 1NC has both an abolition K and a process CP in it, don't be afraid to pull the trigger on condo ethics, even if you're just using it as a solvency takeout to the K.
Tricky CP theory – I generally don’t want to vote on “your CP is too sneaky.” Of course there are a few caveats to this. If the CP is just incredibly theoretically abusive, I might vote on it. Things I probably won’t vote on: Agent CP theory, International CP theory, PIC theory, Multi-plank CP’s bad, etc.
Perm Theory – I have never seen anyone actually go for severance/intrinsic theory, but I guess I would. I’m not sure. It’s not a reason to reject the team.
K Theory – Floating PIK’s are a problem but you need to address them early in the round. I think that if the Aff doesn’t make a theory argument in the speech after it was revealed to be a PIK, I won’t vote on it. Sorry.
Vague Alts theory is definitely something that everyone needs to read more. Alts are so confusing and shift-ey. Please pin them down on something that they have to defend, and if they keep slipping around, run theory, and don’t be afraid to go for it.
I think that’s all we need to go over, but if you have any questions, just let me know.
I will start at a 28.5 and move from there.
29.4-29.7 - I expect you to be in late elims, if not in finals.
29.1-29.3 - I expect you to break, and maybe win a few elimination rounds.
28.7-29 - I expect you to be on the brink between breaking and not.
30 - I don't think I will ever give out one, so if you receive on from me, congratulations on being the best debater that I have ever seen compete. This is reserved solely for legendary debaters who will be spoken about for years to come.
25-27 - you have said or done something in the round that unsettled me to the point where I think you should seriously re-evaluate the way you debate. This is almost exclusively reserved for debaters who are excessively rude or hateful.
I will not vote on anything that happened outside of the round because I cannot verify anything that I was not there for. Sorry, but it's just something I can't evaluate.
If you actively advocate for racist/sexist/homophobic/ableist/transphobic/etc arguments I will tank your speaks and vote you down. I don't want to have written this, because this should be a given by now. Oh well.
If you clip cards, you will lose.
Don't steal prep. I won't vote you down immediately, but I will be pretty mad and may lower your speaks.
Northside College Prep '16 - University of Kentucky '20
I like being on e-mail chains! firstname.lastname@example.org
I will always reward smart teams that can effectively and efficiently communicate their arguments to me. Engaging with your opponent, having a well-thought out strategy, and demonstrating that you’re doing consistent, hard work is what this activity is about. Please be respectful to both your partner and your opponents and give it your best!
I like them a lot. There is such a thing as zero risk of a disad and there can be no link. Do impact calculus, have a clear link to the affirmative. Quality evidence is appreciated, though it's not the only thing! Being able to communicate what your ev says and why your ev matters is key!
Conditionality is good.
I am okay for critical strategies. However, I didn’t debate these so make sure to explain your authors to me. Affirmatives that do little engagement with the critique alternative are likely to lose. Critiques that do little engagement with the affirmative itself are likely to lose. Explain your links in the context of the AFF and your AFF in the context of the alternative. The perm is not always the best strategy and that is okay.
I am willing to vote either way on framework. I should be able to tell that you know and understand what the affirmative is if you are reading it. Framework is best when it engages with the methodology of the AFF and questions the state’s role in activism. I like topic education arguments.
add me to the chain: email@example.com
minneapolis south '19
last updated: 4/6/21
background: i debated for minneapolis south and went to the toc senior year. i primarily ran kritikal arguments as a 2n/double 2. i did some light coaching for minneapolis south in 2019-20 and am currently studying economics and race, ethnicity, and migration at new college of florida.
online debate: 7% slower, 21% clearer, tech issues aren't prep
tldr: you do you. i will be happiest judging whatever you find exciting/strategic and have spent quality time researching. i have preferences and biases that inevitably influence me — which is why i've listed them below — but i try to suppress them as much as possible when making a decision.
my voting record in clash debates has been pretty even.
i fall in the camp tech > truth which means...
- i will try to decide the round in the least interventionist way possible. i won't impose my opinion on what may be true* and i won't write a ballot on an argument that wasn't made in round. accordingly, i love judge instruction!!
- *2 exceptions — 1) i won't vote for harmful/oppressive arguments. 2) in debates over evidence quality/content where one team is obviously lying and the other team points it out, i'm going with the side of truth. i think that's an intervention necessary to maintain reasonable debates.
- line by line > contextual overviews >>> everything else
- small arguments which poke big holes can be round changers
- your arguments still need to be fully developed, and your speaks will get bumped if you isolate the framing question(s), make ethos and pathos appeals, and weave grand narratives. truth is technical when deployed well.
—preferences and biases—
framework: in most framework debates, the most important factor in my decision is 2nr/2ar impact framing. in very closely-matched/high-skilled framework debates, the most important factor is usually the internal link debating, i.e. who is better controlling the internal link(s) into the terminal impact(s).
i genuinely don't have a preference between the aff going for impact turns and/or counter-interps/models. tvas don't need to solve the aff but should be able to solve at least some of the aff's offense on framework.
framework biases: limits, clash, and switch side debate are the most demonstrable framework arguments. i believe education and self-actualization is the 'telos' of debate, but procedural fairness-based impacts are more strategic for the neg because of aff impact turns.
i think uniqueness is an underexplored aspect of framework debating -- i've been easily persuaded to drop arguments because they're non-unique. however, that might just be because the opposing team usually doesn't adequately respond to uniqueness pushes.
kritikal affs: should have a relation to the topic, and a contestable advocacy.
kritiks: neg teams should prioritize explaining their theoretical grounding, engaging in specific link analysis that cites aff speeches, and explaining how the alt solves the impact. aff teams should remember to contest the neg's theoretical grounding, leverage their solvency evidence, explain perm(s) early, answer each link, and make smart offensive arguments. both teams should use historical examples.
links should prove the aff is worse than the status quo (presumption ballots are rough). down for kicking the alt, but i waver on whether that's ever a good idea.
framework is either irrelevant or filters almost all the offense on the flow -- 2ns who accurately identify what's happening are amazing. tech > truth means i won't create my own arbitrary interpretation. aff teams should explain what perms look like under the neg's framework, and the 2nr + 2ar should generally give me a lot of judge instruction on fwk if it's going to be a key component of the debate.
kritikal background: i'm most familiar with the lit of abolition, settler colonialism, afro-pessimism, afro-optimism, marx/capitalism, puar, and baudrillard. this doesn't mean that you can slack on explanation, it means i'll probably know your tricks and be disappointed if you mis-explain authors.
das: whether link or uniqueness controls depends on the da and aff and neg explanation. specific ev > quality ev > recent ev > quantity of ev. i think zero risk is possible, accordingly, neg teams should explain their internal link chains. better for brink arguments than most.
cps: i default to judge kicking cps if asked. cheaty cps are fun but i'm aff-leaning on theory questions.
t: i really appreciate model comparisons (caselists, lost/gained neg ground, etc.). please define what reasonability means if you go for it. i don't have a ton of topic knowledge - will need extra explanation for acronyms and topic norms.
case: i love case debates that dig into the ev and point out logical holes. it's hard, but possible, to convince me the aff does nothing. i appreciate the tech of a well-executed impact turn.
theory: arguments need to be warranted — not down for 5 second a-spec shells. i find counter-interps helpful for the majority of theory debates.
theory biases: condo is good, but i start to lean aff after ~two advocacies. i don't see the strategic value in running multiple ks.
misc: re-highlighted ev must be read, not inserted. early breaking debates > late breaking debates. strict on 1ar-2ar consistency, will give some leeway if the 2nr had new arguments/warrants. no new 2ar cross-applications across different flows.
speaks: average is ~28.6, deserving of a speaker award is ~29.2+
decision time: it usually takes me longer than average to give a decision. it may be reflective of how close the round was, but it's more likely i'm just taking the time to sort through the flow and give you the best RFD i can :)
Last Updated: 2/24/21
I would like to be on the email chain firstname.lastname@example.org
***This Paradigm is written with with the idea that I will be judging policy debates, if this isn't a policy debate take what applies to you and ignore everything that doesn't***
*Overall Ideas that I have about debate*
I like all styles of debate.
I believe that debate is a fun game we play.
Why we play the game is different for everyone.
I believe that everyone should have fun playing it.
This is especially true for novice debate. I think sometimes we forget we all had a first day.
What this means is that I will make it a priority to keep the spaces I'm involved in safe.
I will acknowledge the material implications of some bodies in certain spaces, so I will not police the debate space or conform to respectability politics of ANY tournament.
I will try my best to make this space accessible for you. Let me know what I can do (this can include an email before the round).
Technical debate is good debate.
A true argument can beat a bunch of silly arguments.
An Argument is a claim with a warrant. I will only flow claims with warrants.
I will not listen to impact turns of oppression. I will stop the round and leave. Your speaker points will reflect this.
Don't use slurs outside of your social location. I will stop the round and leave. Your speaker points will reflect this.
I don't want to judge a debate based off of what happened outside of the round. It becomes really awkward for everyone. And I can't adequately attest these truth claims. Just don't do it. Please.
I flow on paper- due to technology sound transfer and audio processing I ask that you go slower than your fastest pace. 80% of your normal speed should be good. If I don't flow it, it doesn't count so don't try to argue with me on what you did/didn't say.
Spreading is a strategy used to create Layers to an argument in a small amount of time. If you are just fast without adding dimension to your argument then you are dong it wrong and should stop.
I am very expressive, you can tell if I like your argument or if you are winning an argument.
I understand adapting to judges, but from personal experience you can win in front of any critic doing what you do best.
I am open to adjusting my judging style/practice in nearly anyway that is asked of me.
I will not be offended if you ask me about my familiarity with topic specific acronyms/specific arguments. PLEASE DO SO. I want to know what you're talking about.
AFF: You should be "topical", what that means is up for debate. Does that mean in the direction of the topic? Does that mean USFG action? IDK you tell me. But criticizing the "norms" of debate without relation to the topic is iffy for me and in my opinion a negative argument. If you have a justification for it go ahead because I will be evaluating the debate based off my flow anyway, but I am sympathetic to T/Framework Arguments. But don't be discouraged I have read/do read/coach teams to read "non-topical" affirmatives and understand the strategic choice behind doing so. That non-topical affirmative MUST do something (re: differ from the status quo).
The status quo is always an option. Please don't forget the art of case debate. This goes beyond just impact defense. Don't be afraid for a good Impact Turn debate I'm all for a warming good, econ decline good, bio D loss good, ect debate.
I wholeheartedly believe that you can say the state can do a particular policy action, and that single instance is good for x amount of people, without defending the other terrible things the state has done. Example, Welfare is probably a good thing. Yes there is problems with who gets it, but a world with out it is probably worse. I also believe that wiki disclosures is good defense against predictability claims. I also believe that some teams don't even make an attempt at engagement and some framework shells are written with the intent to never have k debates exist. That's probably a bad thing to defend. Don't let that be you. Nonetheless, T debates are dope. I default to competing interpretations unless told otherwise. It will never be a reverse voter. It will never be genocide. You have to have a TVA. Your standards need to be impacted out or else they are just internal links and idk what to do with that. I will not vote on potential abuse. I want to see the blood on the flow. Where did they make the game unfair for you. I think the more specific the evidence/examples the better.
Impact framing and comparisons are major key. I'm cool with Generics DA's as long as your links are baller, but the more unique the DA the better. I believe in a 1% risk of a link. I also believe in a 0% risk of an impact. Explanation is key here. Im more willing to vote on a good story with fewer cards than me drowning in cards and trying to put together a story myself. also please tag your card 7 words or more. "more ev" is not an argument and i will not evaluate it.
I'm all for a good counterplan. 2nc counterplans are cool. 2nc amendments are cool. For me to vote on a CP you need to be super good on the case debate and differentiating the perm. Be clear on the CP text so I can flow it and also establish competition and better evaluate the argument. The states counter plan is definitely a legitimate strategy and should be protected at all cost.
I'm most familiar with argumentation in critical race theory, gender and sexuality args and identity/performance based arguments but this doesn't mean I won't listen to what you have to say if those things aren't your jazz. Reading is Fundamental. I read a lot so I will most likely know what you are talking about. I expect college debaters to also be well read. My patience increases with hs debaters learning about different arguments, none the less you should still be reading. I cannot stress this enough. Reading is imperative. My hs kids have taken a liking to old french dudes so I have tried by best as an educator to familiarize myself with that field of literature to be a better coach. I will give you that same respect as an adjudicator if I don't understand your criticism. I believe engagement and contextualizing your theory with your opponents arguments gets you a long way. Explain what the alt does. I think far too often this explanation is missing from the debate. I don't believe in just voting on links (I say this, but as I think about it you can go for links as disads to the case...idk convince me). You have to find a way to resolve those for me. Also "root cause" arguments are not links, they are just alt solvency evidence.
I don't believe in Fem IR criticisms, I don’t believe in satire performances, I’m not a fan of girl boss feminist narratives, and I have a problem with “debate bad” arguments.
Don't read theory args as a time skew. The aff gets a perm unless you say why. Conditionality: The neg can do whatever they want as long as the positions don't contradict (nothing more than 5 off please), and they make a decision in the 2nr. I will not judge kick for you. You need to make a decision. Not here for cheap shots. I really don't want to have to judge a theory debate but I understand abuse and am willing to vote on it. If you plan on going for a theory argument, a substantial amount of time needs to be spent on it in the rebuttal. SPEC arguments are the worst thing to happen to debate and I will buy anything the 2a says if its remotely responsive. As said before, I don't like performative contradictions. This also just applies to the rounds that i'm in. I don't care that the person reading framework against you also reads a k aff. It's a game. they picked a strategy that's going to win them the game.
Is binding. Is a speech. I'll write notes during this time. Please Answer questions. Don't be sketchy, I'll know it. Don't be afraid to point out if your opponents are being sketchy.
Do not Fabricate evidence. It's inexcusable. Do not clip cards. its inexcusable.
Challenges of card clipping will result in stopping the debate if material evidence is provided that proves beyond a reasonable doubt in my mind that card clipping has occurred. the offending team will receive a loss and the offending speaker will receive 0 speaker points. however if i conclude that the speaker is not guilty of clipping cards the challenging team will receive a loss and both challenging speakers will receive 0 speaker points.
***clipping cards is not a slurring of words or clack of clarity***
I'm from the school of thought that everybody in the round should have access to all evidence read in the debate. Denial to share citations or disclose is a b!+ch move. Prepared debate is good debate. Don't get this confused with breaking new, that's all fine.
MY TIME IS THE RIGHT TIME AND THE ONLY TIME THAT MATTERS. I don't count flashing or emailing as prep. Flex prep is not a thing(you cannot use cross-x as prep or time to give another speech). Speak in your assigned time slots (interpret this vaguely. It just means 1 constructive and 1 rebuttal. idc the order) unless for some performative or ethical reason that you can't (For example, if both debaters speak during the 1AC cool. There was a reason for it. Probably performative. In the rebuttal to continue the performance? Cool. Have a debater take over the line by line? Not Cool. This is a clear shift in the competitive aspect and nature of the game. Unless for some reason a debater disappears/goes missing...why would this happen? idk, but unusual things happen all the time)
Clarification questions during prep is okay. But don't try to make "a point". If you happen to be a team on the receiving end of someone trying to tear down your argument during prep, please refuse to answer.
I'll hook everyone up with speaks #PointFairy. I never want to be the reason debaters don’t break so I might over compensate, but who cares y’all are doing all the rigorous work the least I can do is help in the speaker point end.
I understand the joy of speaker awards and I will do my best to help y'all out.
I evaluate speaks of by delivery>argument choice. the team with the better Argument choice will most likely win win the round.
You'll get a 30 if you are just baller, or make me laugh uncontrollably. (I enjoy witty jokes, and I'm a big sports fan if that helps you come up with material)
+0.3 for every KD joke
(I haven't made up my mind if I will put a cap on jokes or not, so be a comedian at the risk of knowing you might not be rewarded for all the jokes)
I'll use this as a tool to teach young people how to advocate for themselves. after the round tell me what speaks you think you deserve(realistically) and I might agree with you.
when making analytical arguments I would advise going for the easiest pen to paper phrasing
if you send me your flow after the round I will up your speaks(HS ONLY)
How I make my Decisions:
I use the burden of rejoinder frame to structure how I evaluate debates.
I hold a strict line with new arguments in the rebuttals so a majority of my time will be lining up arguments.
In clash debates the easiest framing for me is what's most educational and best for the community.
I dislike students who try to post round. This has only happened to me twice. None the less I will not tolerate it. I am also willing to admit that I am wrong. But that will not change my decision. If the understanding that I get form your argument happens in a post round and not in a debate, I cannot reward you for communicating your point late in the game. This is a communication activity and if something didn't reach my flow like how you intended there isn't much I can do but listen and process to the best of my ability. If you think I made the wrong decision that's fine and you are completely entitled to feel that way. It does not change the fact that you loss.
Mics/Things you might wanna know about me:
I am Black and Queer.
When I debated I was trained to "Defend the walls" later in my career I became a "k-debater"
You all can call me Jada you don't have to say judge
I was a 2n
I'm a Dog Mom
I have a real pet peeve with what is considered violence in debate
You can insert re highlighting- you don't have to reread the card
If you wanna talk about college debate I'm here(I debated for UNLV) or I can get you in touch with someone from a program you are interested in.
Quotes from People in The Community about me:
"Super smart and a great person all around" Allego Wang
"Incredibly intelligent + really good at explaining difficult concepts" Ali saffieddine
"Their ability to compartmentalize argumentation and overall communication skills are ones I've always aspired to have and continue to grow from simple conversations I have with them. Jada's ability to empathize with students and find the grammar to communicate in ways to accommodate students needs and comprehension skills is one of the many talented characteristics they have. They will really be personal to you and your needs, with flares of individual organic wisdom they've learned over the years. They will not just lecture you. They will help you on your path to education/understanding difficult literature bases by shining light at your strengths and guiding you to find solutions to your weaknesses. Legit, Jada is one of the most influential person I've been blessed to come across" Yumasie Hellebuick
"You're the 50 cent of this community" -Chris Randall
"Jada is the love of my life" - Caitlin Walrath
"I told ppl to pref u just cuz you’re not afraid to stare a k team down and say “yea I voted on nuke war outweighs” with a smile ¯\_(ãƒ„)_/¯" -Ari Davidson
"Jada makes the best memes" JV Soccer Captain and my Teammate Dan Bannister
These are my jams at the moment do with that what you will:
Stanford '17, '18
Yes email chain: lowelldebatedocs [at] gmail.com -- please format the subject as "Tournament Name -- Round # -- Aff School AF vs Neg School NG". Example: "NDT -- Finals -- Georgia RS vs Kentucky BT". For any non email chain email, debnil.sur [at] gmail.com.
Lay Debate: If this is a setting that's predominantly lay (GGSA, CA State), I will judge as a parent, unless explicitly told by both teams that they'd like a circuit debate. I think lay-friendly debate is an immensely valuable dying art. At NSDA, given the sheer number of circuit judges and my background in both lay and circuit debate, I would recommend that you adapt to the rest of the panel, especially the most lay judge. I will understand what you are doing and evaluate accordingly. I will not penalize you for making the debate more accessible for all judges.
LD: The closer you are to policy, the better. I strongly lean aff on all theory in this activity and think the time constraints make negative conditionality incredibly difficult.
Above all, tech substantially outweighs truth. The below are preferences, not rules, and will easily be overturned by good debating. But, since nobody's a blank slate, treat the below as heuristics I use in thinking about debate. Incorporating some can explain my decision and help render one in your favor.
General Background: I learned to debate at Bellarmine in San Jose, where I consistently cleared at large national invitationals, including the TOC. I also did well at lay-friendly formats like NSDA and California state. I debated for a hot second at Stanford, but ended up directing my limited debate efforts into youth outreach.
I now work full-time in tech in San Francisco. I help the policy debate team at Lowell in my spare time; this is how give back to the community I live in and to one that shaped me. While I'm not a full-time debate person, I'm involved in the team's strategy and have a good sense of arguments read around the country.
Basically, I've seen a lot of debates between great teams, and I can comfortably judge any arguments.
Ideologically, I'd say I'm 55/45 leaning right. I think my voting records don't reflect this, because K debaters tend to see the bigger picture in clash rounds.
Topic Background: I've done a large amount of generic and case-specific research, thanks to COVID's destruction of my social life. I also judge 1-2 tournaments a month. As a result, I have a very good sense of the topic's argumentative trends. Below are some soft predispositions about the topic. Again, every single one of these is completely contingent and depends upon the debate that happens.
- In any soft left policy debate, I will resolve the risk assessment / framing debate first. I do not see another way to make a coherent decision. I would strongly recommend the 2NR spend substantial time developing their model of risk assessment (cost benefit analysis, extinction first, conjunctive fallacy and cumulative risk, etc), even if there is a counterplan in the 2NR - you know this will be a crux of the 2AR, so debate accordingly. 2NRs commonly assert their counterplan obviates the framing contention - I don't know why this applies to arguments like the conjunctive fallacy or extinction focus bad, and it's on you to explain this. If the negative wins the framing debate, I will almost certainly vote negative. The same holds true on the affirmative.
- Quite good for the neg in a purely technical T debate against a policy aff - much more so than I have been on past topics. This topic is so massive, and the lack of negative generics post-election so stark, that I completely get going for T as a purely strategic move.
- More right leaning on framework overall, especially against "direction of the topic" counterinterps, because of the centrality of process ground on this topic. I don't think a model of debate that sticks the neg with the crime DA or absolutist K's is educationally valuable or predictable. I have yet to hear a persuasive articulation of any other ground, absent fiated implementation. But as always, tech will dictate my ballot in clash debates - this is why I've been voting aff against framework a lot.
- Much harder sell on aff theory arguments against specific deployments of negative fiat. The neg has to get back in the game somehow. But I don't like uncarded, many-plank counterplans very much, and am very persuaded by theoretical opposition. It's likely not a reason to reject the team, but if well articulated, I'll likely grant a high risk to the solvency deficit.
Voting Splits: As of halfway through the CJR topic, I've judged 184 rounds of VCX at invitationals over 7.5 years. I typically judged 2-3 tournaments a year while in college, or ~15 rounds per topic for ~75 rounds total. Since I became a “coach” on the immigration topic, I have judged 5 national circuit tournaments per topic (separate from 3 to 5 in-California local tournaments in our season), for a total of 109 rounds.
Below are my voting splits across the (synthetic) policy-K divide, where the left team represents the affirmative, as best as I could classify debates. Paradigm text can be inaccurate self-psychoanalysis, so I hope the data helps.
CJR Topic (through Blake)
Policy v. Policy - 6-10: 37.5% for the aff over 16 rounds
Policy v. K - 2-6: 25% for the aff over 8 rounds
K v. Policy - 6-4: 60% for the aff over 10 rounds
K v. K - 0-1: 100% for the neg over 1 round
Policy v. Policy - 42-39: 52% for the aff over 81 rounds
Policy v. K - 21-32: 40% for the aff over 53 rounds
K v. Policy - 19-21: 48% for the aff over 40 rounds
K v. K - 3-3: 50% for the aff over 6 rounds
Online Debate: I love that schools with limited budgets are getting more competitive opportunities. I also love that this activity is being preserved for students during this horrendous time period. I dislike everything else about online debate.
- Please slow down 10-20%. Your mic quality is not as good as in person. I also have to balance multiple open windows too (flow, speech doc, video), so my flowing is a bit slower.
- Please send analytics. I promise you the strategic benefit is outweighed by the loss of clash, and random Internet blips mean this really helps with continuity. I won't drop your points if you don't send them, but I'll up them +0.1 if you do.
- Please keep your camera on in the entire debate, unless you have Internet issues or really prefer not to. It really helps me follow the debate and flow, and helps your persuasive capacity. But I know this can be uncomfortable for a variety of reasons. Just let me know that you're not comfortable with it before the debate - no details needed - and it's all good, no questions asked.
**Note: If your camera's off and there's a lot of dead time on your end, I will likely check what you're doing and ask you to start your speech. I've had too many debates where camera-off debaters had inordinate amounts of dead time, and I really don't have patience for prep theft.
- Please get explicit visual or audio confirmation from everyone in the debate before beginning your speech. Do not ask "is anyone not good", because if someone just isn't there, then they can't say anything.
- If my camera is off, unless I explicitly have told you otherwise, assume I'm not at the computer. I will let you know if you should expect differently (i.e., I'm having Internet issues).
- If the current speaker has significant tech problems, I'll try to interrupt your speech and mark the last argument and timestamp.
- Tip: be mindful of your ethos! It's hard to control the room online, and being a speed demon doesn't translate as well over digital media. Strategic pauses, emphasizing tags and key words, and other persuasive speaking practices have disproportionately mattered for me in speaker points, framing the debate, and my ultimate decisions.
Thoughts on Specific Arguments
Framework: I almost exclusively went for framework against planless affs in high school; identity arguments really rose in the West Coast post-2013, so this was primarily against pomo arguments. I then proceeded to work with excellent debaters on either side of this ideological divide. I have a very even, slightly right-leaning voting record. I almost always vote for whoever resolves uniqueness to impact/impact turns and the relative precedence of these arguments. I'm better for switch-side, TVA, skills impacts than procedural impacts; I think the latter requires you to win defense to the aff in some form (of course, these can be defensive framings of the former). Fairness does not seem intrinsically good if the affirmative wins impact turns to the game.
K Affs: Totally down. Develop a couple pieces of key offense and explain thesis claims. Do line-by-line (or apply your overview to specific 2AC answers, in order) unless you're incredible at generating clash without it. If you aren't, your speaks will suffer, and I will likely resolve key points of clash for the negative. I do think you get a perm, because link debating is good, but I am a big fan of reading topic disads against K affs, or picking and choosing quotations of the 1AC as bases for various disadvantages/impact turns/etc.
Ks: I know something about almost all Ks in debate. Links to the plan are great, and if you don't have them, tell me how to weigh those against the plan and its consequences. I find that framework almost always decides these debates for me. I believe I'm more of an educator than policymaker, which means representational critiques or critiques of debate's educational incentive structure will land better for me than most judges. This is reflected by my voting record, which is about 60/40 neg, since most 1ARs don't handle the framework and K tricks well.
That being said, if the neg doesn't win framework, I'm quite aff leaning in a policy versus K debate. I'm a hard sell on sweeping ontological or metaphysical claims about society; I'll likely let the aff weigh the plan; I don't think the alt can fiat structures out of existence; and I think the alt needs to generate some solid uniqueness for the criticism. The neg will have to win some major turns case arguments and do great case debating/contextualization if framework is lost.
Theory: Conditionality is good. Counterplans competing on certainty or immediacy are bad. Other theory preferences are likely determined by the topic. If you have solid lit for your CP, I'll be very receptive to its theoretical legitimacy. Presumption goes to less change - debate what this means in round. Otherwise, it goes aff in the event of an advocacy.
Topicality: Before other theory. Precision typically decides the standards debate for me. I default to competing interps. Reasonability is a question of whether substance crowdout caused by topicality debates outweighs difference in interps. Please demonstrate solid knowledge of the topic (specific case lists, arguments being read around the country, etc) to go for this well.
Policy Stuff: Like everyone, I like it. I care more about link centered debate than impact, so focus on uniqueness and link framing over terrible turns case arguments. I don't think you need evidence to make an argument -- I think many bad advantages can be reduced to zero through smart analytics, and I shower debaters who do this with high speaker points. But, the better their evidence is, the more likely you'll need your own. While I like soft left affs, they need to contextualize generic framing contentions to specific negative arguments.
Speaker Points: I flow on my computer, but I do not use the speech doc. I want every word said, even in card text and especially in your 2NC topicality blocks, to be clear. I will shout clear twice in a speech, after that, your problem.
Note that this assessment is done per-tournament: for calibration, I think a 29.3-29.4 at a finals bid is roughly equivalent to a 28.8-28.9 at an octos bid.
29.5+ — the top speaker at the tournament.
29.3-29.4 — one of the five or ten best speakers at the tournament.
29.1-29.2 — one of the twenty best speakers at the tournament.
28.9-29 — a 75th percentile speaker at the tournament; with a winning record, would barely clear on points.
28.7-28.8 — a 50th percentile speaker at the tournament; with a winning record, would not clear on points.
28.3-28.6 — a 25th percentile speaker at the tournament.
28-28.2 — a 10th percentile speaker at the tournament.
Ethics: Cheating means you will get the lowest possible points. You need a recording to prove the other team is clipping. If you mark a card, say where you’re marking it, actually mark it, and offer a marked copy before CX in constructives or the other's team prep time in a rebuttal. Flashing and emailing isn’t prep, but don’t take forever.
If there is a different alleged ethics violation, I will ask the team alleging the violation if they want to stop the debate; let both teams offer a written defense of their practice; and then decide the violation based on said written defenses. I'll evaluate these per the NSDA rulebook, since non-clipping ethics norms are quite vague, and I can't find another coherent set of norms.
Debate is the greatest game I've ever played, and it also substantially changes your subjectivity and makes life-long friendships. Enjoy it!
Please add me to the chain: email@example.com
Did policy at Interlake HS for 4 years as a 2A, graduated in 2020 (I do British Parli now in college if that means anything to you all in policy)
Don’t know much about the 2020-21 topic
*it would be great if everyone could keep their cameras on, I understand that everyone has their own specific circumstances so if you have your camera off I won’t question you/penalize you for that (nor do you have to justify why you are keeping your camera off), however if you are able to keep your camera on, it is definitely nice to see everyone debating and it makes debates feel a little more like before :’)
I don’t really care what you read as long as you really (really!) explain and develop it well.
PLEASE SLOW DOWN AND BE CLEAR- my computer audio can be kinda trash, online debate is hard, just slow down and I PROMISE you will be rewarded!
Please assume I don’t know what you’re talking about whether that be your K lit base, your political theory, your acronym, etc. (not to say I have NO idea what you’re talking about, rather you should not take your explanation for granted and just assume I know what’s going on when you assert stuff)
However my personal argument familiarity is as follows:
- Big stick affs, 2. CP/DA debates, 3. Soft left aff, 4. K debate, 5. T (Policy), 6. FW v KAff, 7. K v K (like I have close to zero familiarity with this, but again not unwilling to listen!)
More specific stuff:
*you should view everything I say here as “[this is something I believe] unless I am told otherwise, these are kind of my general thoughts right now, but it's all subject to change depending on the course of the debate”
* I think some parts of my paradigm makes it seem like I like dislike most offcase args, that’s def not true. I’m mostly pointing out some nit picky arg preferences I have, but I PROMISE just go for whatever you want/what is strategic, I will vote for pretty much anything
- I don’t believe in trying to trick your opponents, debates are best when they are educational for both sides so I’m def not a fan of “gotcha” strategies (as in not flashing ASPEC in your T shell, things like Floating PIKs are fine)
- Legit like please slow down to maybe 70% of your top speed ESPECIALLY at the top of your speech because it’s incredibly hard to listen to things during online debate
- Depth >>>> breadth
- I don’t like calling for cards - it’s up to the debaters to interpret and spin evidence, if there is a serious dispute over a piece of ev i will look, but other than that just explain it
- I’m more of a speaks fairy, but I base it more on style than content
- be a decent person - any racism, sexism, misgendering, homophobia, transphobia, etc. will not be accepted
- Tech > truth (other than obvious exceptions)
- I think that politics DAs are generally pretty bad, although I do understand that on this topic there isn’t a ton of other stuff to read
- ^given my opinion on this (and this might be a bad/not hot take) i think you don’t always need to have offense to answer DAs (politics or otherwise), like if the DA is obviously missing some key internal links and the impact card is from 1999 you probably don’t need that much offense to beat it
- Analytics are great as long as they have warrants
- Impact calc please and thank you <3
- Smart, techy CPs are great! Smart perms are even better
- You should probably flash the text of your perms
- Unlimited condo is probably fine, but still up for debate
- Ambivalent about PICs, Consult CPs, other process CPs, and theory related to that, if you go for theory i will listen to it but it basically needs to be the whole 2ar
- Theory needs to be a little slower so i can flow, also please do line by line and don’t just read 2006 backfiles
- Will now default to judge kick after some thinking
- I know it’s hard but please have your links be as specific as possible, I will hold the link to a pretty high standard so the aff should also be pointing out why the link is/is not contextual to the aff
- i have a loose/basic understanding of the literature of most of the more popular Ks (afropess, bio power, cap, queerness, settler colonialism, security, etc.), but for your own success, you’ll probably be better served over-explaining rather than under-explaining, please help me make important connections
- the alt: I’ve heard both sides to the debate about whether you need an alt (as in kicking it, pls don't read a 1nc k w/o an alt unless that’s the point lol), I think i lean a bit towards yes, you need an alt, however I can definitely be convinced otherwise
- FW debating on the K in my experience is pretty messy, so do the line by line and have those warrants!
- no page long overviews pls
- Tbh i was not the best with T debate in high school, however I think these debates are really interesting to watch if there is clash and good explanation, and T is the argument I have thought about most for prepping my team + when examining the topic
- Really explain what the topic will look like under your interp, keep in mind that I don’t know what the topic looks like at the moment, nor do I know what all these different affs are (like if you were to give a case list for example)
- Given that I’m not the best with T debates, make those important connections and do that impact work
- I'm fine with this, not a lot of super-advanced familiarity, read some K affs a couple of times
- Please have the aff be somewhat related to the topic
- Try to have some explanation of what the aff’s advocacy is
- For the aff: I don’t really think you can just kick your aff and then say that you’re going for offense against FW because I believe that your offense should often be generated from the aff’s content/form which needs to be extended
- I think neg fw cards are often underused, if you read it please keep extending it, if not it doesn’t even need to be read
- Please be very clean on the line by line, these debates need to be very techy or else they become flat out messy
- Do impact comparison
- Fairness is an impact (again up for debate though, this is just my default)
K v K:
- As mentioned earlier I’m probably not the best for this, I have been in maybe 3 of these debates in my life, but I’m more than willing to judge one of these rounds
- Whether perms should be allowed is up for debate
I was a performance debater so naturally I am drawn more to performance/critical debates, but this is not about me its about you. So, debate however makes you feel comfortable.
Traditional debaters: I have NEVER been a traditional debater so overviews are very helpful because I am not up to date on things like politics D/A's or how much political capital the president has etc., So flushing those things out will greatly help your chances in the debate.
I am not a huge framework judge. That means it is up to you to prove to me that it is abusive, or that there is a topical version of their aff.
1. Do YOU!
2. I understand that being negative you only have to prove that the aff is bad, however, in those scenarios you need to explain why that alone is enough, because I like ways to fix things or at least try.
3. Don't make me vote on framework! Show me that your aff is reasonably topical/ or could never be topical, or why you being topical is bad.
4. I LOVE OVERVIEWS
Who I vote for is largely going to come down to who tells the best cohesive story at the end of the debate.
Also, in any debate I love historical or just examples in general of how things play out in the real world.
Teach me something, express yourself, have fun, make me laugh, don't be mean.
UK, GBN, ADL
Add me: firstname.lastname@example.org
College people, add: email@example.com
Please put useful info about the round in the subject of the email.
Key Things to Know
I will flow and vote on things you said. NEGs can say whatever but the less it says the plan is bad the more annoying it is. Conditionality and judge kick are good. Ks are good if they are secretly DAs. AFFs should be T and are likely to lose if they aren't. If you say death good you lose.
If my camera is off, assume I am away from my computer and don't start talking.
I am in Taiwan. If I am judging you at a US tournament I am probably doing it at night and am tired. Explain more. If something is important say it twice or loud or slow. Assume I am not at my sharpest.
I will probably vote quickly. This does not necessarily mean the debate was lopsided or bad; more likely, it is a sign that the teams clearly communicated the relationships between their arguments, allowing me to perform evaluations as the debate is happening. If I take a long time that means I am confused.
I STRONGLY prefer that your camera be on at all times, but I understand if internet or other tech considerations prevent this.
Here is how to successfully adjust to the online setting:
- inflect more when you are talking
- put your face in frame
- get a microphone, put it close to your face, talk into it, make sure there is an unobstructed line between it and your mouth
- talk one at a time
Tech determines truth unless your argument is an affront to obvious reality or it's death good. If you tell me to embrace death because life is bad I will vote against you even if you do not go for the argument.
Ethical systems that are okay with indiscriminate murder as an end in itself are not for me.
Otherwise, unless my role as a judge is changed, I will attempt to write the least interventionary ballot. This means:
1. What is conceded is absolutely true, but will only have the implications that you say it has. I will not assume what is not obvious. For example, I will not cross apply arguments from one flow to another, will not assume impact D applies to impacts you didn't say it applies to, will not assume a CP solves something you didn't say it solves, etc.
2. I will intervene if there is no non-interventionary decision.
3. When something is thorny or annoying I have often found myself starting the decision by looking for ways to vote without resolving that thing. With proper framing and argument choice you can rig this process in your favor.
For whatever reason the stats say I really like the NEG.
High schoolers - BEFORE THE DEBATE, if you think your wiki is good (has cites/open source for every card you have read OR detailed descriptions of arguments that are not card reliant) tell me and if I agree both debaters get +1 speaker point.
The following are my inclinations - if you don't like them you can change them.
Your DAs should clash with the AFF. The bar for getting me to care about fake politics arguments is high. I think I like intrinsicness, although no one has actually tested this out yet.
I care about the DA turning the case a lot.
"Framing pages" are dumb. Maybe they could be smart? I have yet to see a proof of concept for this that I care about.
My favorite "framing" arguments are those that raise epistemological questions about NEG claims or kritik NEG assumptions or representations. There are impact frames that are neither utilitarian nor deontological; find a point between these extremes. Pointing out that 1% risk logic is bad matters only if you have reduced the NEG's argument to 1% risk. This means your time should be allocated overwhelmingly to normal DA debating rather than ranting about the conjunctive fallacy or whatever.
90% of the time your 1AC minutes are better spent preempting core NEG arguments like the courts CP or specific DAs, rather than talking about DAs in the abstract.
Case offense is strategic and funny.
CP'ing in offense is underrated.
My default is judge kick. It is very hard to use theory to stop me from thinking about the status quo.
The AFF should be able to win a process CP doesn't compete if they are competent and don't drop things. Granting competition makes the theory debate more difficult because it proves your CP is an opportunity cost.
Good for the NEG on theory, especially condo. I care the most about clash as a theory impact. Nothing but condo is a voting issue.
Intrinsic perms can be ok depending on the counterplan.
Vagueness in all its forms probably not a VI but can implicate internal links and solvency.
Argue by analogy and comparison to other affs, especially in CX. I think this is one of the best way to find inconsistencies in neg interpretations which you can exploit to your advantage in rebuttals.
Cards matter - all else being equal, if you read more cards supporting/fleshing out your interpretation and demonstrating why the aff doesn't meet I will be more likely to vote for you. I am unlikely to care about a cardless T 2NC.
I am a pedant myself so I am more sympathetic to pedantic T arguments than most.
OK for specific Ks on the NEG, bad for random backfile trash, bad for K AFFs, death good = L.
I think I am better for AFFs without plans than usual on the CJR topic. FW vs abolish AFF that defends actual abolition might require a change in the NEG's usual approach.
If your K is closer to a DA I am more likely to care about it. So - links should be specific, causal, and about the plan.
AFFs' path to victory is proving that the K does not do these things. Therefore, reductionism DA + perm is the most persuasive approach to answering most K arguments.
Same thing if there is no plan text - in a FW debate, the AFF wins by demonstrating that engaging in resolutional debate/being forced to do so intrinsically causes something bad, the NEG wins by demonstrating that the AFF's offense is not intrinsic to resolutional debate and theirs is.
I am open to different understandings of what it means for things to compete if there is no plan.
If the AFF has negated the resolution and the NEG responds with a topical proposal, shouldn't the NEG be the one that gets perms? Isn't that already how we evaluate TVAs? Just a thought. Be creative.
The only effect of my ballot is to decide the winner.
Most of my points have been between 28.4 and 28.9. This seems to be below the curve so I am adjusting.
Wrong strategic choices, being stupid about substance, CXs annoying/pointless, arguments were bad, being needlessly mean, being a mumbler... = lower speaks. Strong strategy, fun/engaging to watch, being smart, being classy, being clear = higher speaks.
Other arg stuff
Evidence ethics (out of context? straw-person? lied about quals? cut in middle of paragraph?) should be debated out like any other theory argument. Don't see why any of that would be an auto-VI in a world where paraphrasing with footnotes or excerpting poetry is commonplace and accepted. Claiming you said words you did not say is an L.
Being racist, sexist, violent, etc. in a way that is immediately and obviously hazardous to someone in the debate = L and 0. My role as educator > my role as any form of disciplinarian, so I will err on the side of letting stuff play out - i.e. if someone used gendered language and that gets brought up I will probably let the round happen and correct any ignorance after the fact. This ends when it begins to threaten the safety of round participants. Where that line is is entirely up to me.
Proud Boriqua Educator and Artist
National Debate Coach at John D. Wells, MS. 50
Full-time Undergraduate Student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice
Full time Paraprofessional in Brooklyn, NYC
ACORN Community High School 2012-16: Policy Debate
Coached Leon M. Goldstien from 2016-17
Judging Policy and Public Forum from 2015- Present
Judging LD from 2018- Present
Judging Congressional and Speech from 2019- Present
For the majority of my debate career I was double 2s, and later became 2N, 1A.
Overall Rules and Expectations:
I do not count flashing as prep unless you take a century.
If you do not have a paper copy of your evidence then you must have a viewing laptop or must share evidence via email/flash, upon request.
I believe that judges are NOT supposed to intervene in round under any circumstances, unless in the case of an extreme emergency.
I shouldn't have to tell you be respectful or to not use hateful, racist, ablest, or homophobic language. And I won't, if I hear it, I will automatically give the ballot to the other team. ABSOLUTELY NOT TOLERATED.
Some may think petty debaters or debaters with attitudes are amusing or cute, I don't. Treat your competitors with respect or it will affect your speaker points.
I believe that it is my responsibility as the judge of the round to remove any pre-existing notions or opinions from my mind of whatever topic you chose to debate over, and act as an objective observer who decides whether or not the aff is a good idea. Unless told otherwise in the round, this is the perspective I default to.
Minimal expectations are the following: If the negative does not provide any disads to voting aff then I will vote aff. If the aff does not prove that the aff is better than the status quo and has an actual solvency method, then I will vote negative. It is in your best interest (speaker points) to go far beyond these basic debate expectations. I'm generous with speaker points if you keep me engaged and make sure I understand you, they usually range from 27-29.5
I don't have any specific preference when it comes to argumentation and I will vote on virtually anything you want me to if explained well.
Hey, so apparently sending evidence without tags is a thing now. Don't do it in front of me. I'll cap your speaks at 28.
from another paradigm I recently saw re: high school debate -
If you think that what you're saying in the debate would not be acceptable to an administrator at a school to hear was said by a high school student to an adult, you should strike me.
I don't want to be on the email chain. If I want to, I'll ask. You should debate as if I'm not reading a speech doc.
I'm currently a phd candidate and I view debate as an educator and also activist/organizer. This is to say that I ground much of what I think is important in debate in terms of how skills critical thinking in debate rounds adds into a larger goal of pursuing knowledge and external decisionmaking.
i've been in debate since fall 2008. at this point i'm simultaneously more invested and less invested in the activity. i'm more invested in what students get out of debate, and how I can be more useful in my post-round criticism. I'm less invested in personalities/teams/rep/ideological battles in debate. it's entirely possible that I have never heard of you before, and that's fine.
you should run what will win you the round. you should run what makes you happy. don't run what you think I want to hear.
Impact scenarios are where I vote - Even if you win uniqueness/link questions, if I don't know who's going to initiate a war, how an instance of oppression would occur, etc. by the end of the round, I'll probably go looking elsewhere to decide the round. The same thing goes for the aff - if I can't say what the aff solves and why that's important, I am easily persuaded by marginal negative offense.
Prep time ends when you email the file to the other team. It's 2020, you've likely got years of experience using a computer for academic/personal work, my expectations of your email prowess are very high.
Competing methods debates don't mean no permutation, for me at least. probably means that we should rethink how permutations function. people/activists/organizers combine methods all the time.
I don't think I've ever voted a team down b/c theory. an arg yes, but not a team:
I've found myself especially unwilling to vote on theory that's on face not true - for example: if you say floating PICs bad, and the alternative isn't articulated as a floating PIC in the debate, I won't vote on it. I don't care if it's conceded.
I think fairness is an independent impact, but also that non-topical affs can be fair. A concession doesn't mean an argument is made. your only job is to make arguments, i don't care if the other team has conceded anything, you still have to make the argument in the last speech.
Affs I don't like:
I've found myself increasingly frustrated with non-topical affs that run philosophically/critically negative stances on the aff side. The same is true for non-topical affs that just say that propose a framework for analysis without praxis. I'm super open to presumption/switch-side arguments against these kinds of affs.
I'm frustrated by non-topical affs that do not have any sort of advocacy statement/plan text. If you're going to read a bunch of evidence and I have to wait until CX or the 2AC to know what I'm voting for, I'll have a lower threshold to vote on fw/t/the other team.
Finally, I have limited belief in the transformative power of speech/performance. Especially beyond the round. I tend to think that power/violence is materially structured and that the best advocacies can tell me how to change the status quo in those terms.
Negs I don't like:
Framework 2nr's that act as if the affirmative isn't dynamic and did not develop between the 2ac and the 1ar. Most affs that you're inclined to run framework against will prove "abuse" for you in the course of the debate.
Stale politics disadvantages. Change your shells between tournaments if necessary, please.
Theoretically inconsistent/conflicting K strats.
I don't believe in judge kicking. Your job is to make the strategic decisions as the debate continues, not mine.
if you have questions about me or my judge philosophy, ask them before the round!
- College specific: I haven't judged or researched at all on this topic. I have debated and researched alliance arguments for the past two years so I know base level stuff, but please explain as much as possible.
Email me if you have questions and please put me on the chain: dylan.willett8 at gmail dot com. I coach for the Asian Debate League. I debated for UMKC. In college, I mostly went for framework, topic DAs, and an assortment of topic critiques. As a coach I mostly have spent the last year working on core counterplans and politics DAs, but have spent a lot of time working with critical approaches to the topic as well.
*I am in Taiwan which is at minimum 13 hours ahead of the tournament I am judging so make sure to start off at a pace where I can adapt to your speed and speed up progressively through the speech because I might begin the debate a bit groggy*
Be bold, it will be rewarded if you do it well. I find that debates that center less on reading tons of evidence and more on extrapolation, spin, and application are my favorite. This doesn't mean don't read cards where you need them, but proliferation of evidence can only get you so far without analysis.
I begin my decisions by attempting to identify what the most important arguments are, who won them, and how they implicate the rest of the debate. The more judge instruction, including dictating where I should begin my decision by showing me what is most important will help determine the lens of how I read the rest of the arguments
I am a big fan of case debates that consist of a lot of offense – impact turns or link turns are always better than just pulling from an impact d file.
I think that I mostly lean negative on theory arguments – I would be really sad if I had to parse through a huge theory debate like condo, but am willing. I think I start from a predisposition that condo, PICs, etc are okay, and change based off the theory debate as it develops. I think theory is an important part of an affirmative strategy versus good, and especially cheaty, counterplans.
I feel like I pretty close to about 50/50 in framework debates and the best teams spend a lot of their speeches on these flows answering the nuanced developments of their opponents. Aff or neg teams that just say a different wording of their original offense in each speech are setting themselves up to lose. I am interested in hearing what debates would look like under each model. I like education arguments that are contextual to the topic and clever TVAs and impact turns are good ways to get my ballot while making the debate less stale.
Ks, DAs, CPs, T, FW, etc are all fine to read and impact turn – as long as I am judging a round where there is some attention to strategy and arguments are being developed, I will be happy. Definitely willing to vote on zero risk of a link.
Add me to the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Debated for Interlake, 2 years out
Tech Issues: I'll be sympathetic to them, idc if your camera is on
Use content warnings if needed pls.
Debate how you want to debate. Don't be antiblack, anti-Indigenous, racist, transphobic/nbphobic, ableist, antiqueer, misogynistic, Islamophobic etc -- the round will stop and you will get lowest speaks possible. Don't misgender your opponents. If there's something I'm not noticing and you want the round to stop, you can send me a quick email and I will check it between speeches/crossex.
Mostly tech > truth, but truth sets thresholds for how technical you need to be. I'm not tech > truth for disgusting arguments like racism good, etc.
DAs: I default to any risk framing, especially with a counterplan
Counterplans: I will judge kick for you, I'll lean towards infinite condo good, unless theory is dropped. I love a good impact framing debate (offense/defense paradigms, sufficiency framing, etc.). I lean neg on PIC theory, aff on delay/consult/process cps, and neutral on agent + states cps. I lean neg on no severance/intrinsic perms.
K v Plan: I will judge kick the alt for you. I'll vote for a floating pik if it's clearly articulated to me in the neg block and the 1ar drops it. I like robust link work, but I also think generics are fine (because if the aff team doesn't know how to respond to generic links then what are you doing y'all). I'm most familiar with Settler Colonialism, Queerness Deleuze, and Antiblackness kritiks. I lean neg on no severence/intrinsic perms.
Topicality v Plan: I'll listen to any T violation. I'm probably not the best judge for super technical T debates, so if you have some nuanced T violation you might have to do more work for me to understand it.
K affs: Great. Please do impact calc in the 2ar, especially if neg drops case. I have no strong predispositions for what debate/my ballot/my role is.
Framework v K affs: I love these debates. Please do actual impact calc in the 2nr (especially if you're going for fairness).
K aff v Cap: Great. Lean aff on no perm theory.
K aff v other Ks + PIKS: Great. Lean neg on (floating) pik theory here.
Other Theory + Random Voters: I'll hear them, but warrant them out. I'll defer to reject the argument, except for Condo. Performative Contradictions should probably be answered with strategic concessions, not theory (but that's just a personal preference, I'll evaluate perfcon as theory if you run it). Tech>Truth on dropped theory arguments (but don't be egregious with this). I'll probably not vote on RVIs in policy.
Speaks: Race/gender/disability bias exists. I will do my best to overcorrect myself to account for this.
Email me if you have any more specific questions.
I think postrounding can be an important tool for holding people accountable. Don't be afraid to call me out if I mess up on something.
Name: Jefferey Yan
Affiliation: Stuyvesant High School ’15
Binghamton University '19
I debated for 8 years, in HS for Stuyvesant and in college at Binghamton. I read a plan for a majority of my time in HS, and various K arguments on the neg. In college, I read an affirmative about Asian-Americans every year with a variety of flavors and a few about disability. On the neg, we primarily went for K arguments with themes of biopower, capitalism, and resiliency. My senior year, my partner and I got Binghamton's first first-round bid to the NDT ever. We also got to CEDA semis.
I have not been actively coaching at any level for the ongoing season, so I have little familiarity with the alliances/criminal justice topics outside of the few rounds I’ve judged so far. This also means I don’t really know the current “meta” of debate, so it would be very helpful for all of us if you took a little bit of extra time to explain acronyms/topic specific jargon when applicable.
TLDR: Line by line good. Little experience on topic, please explain. I can judge pretty much anything, just do what you do best.
I think line by line is an effective way to both record and evaluate clash that happens in debate. I like to judge debates that are heavily invested in line-by-line refutation because I think it requires the least amount of intervention and the largest amount of me pointing to what you said.
That being said, I think rebuttals require less line-by-line and more framing arguments. The biggest problem for me when evaluating debates is there is often little explanation of how I should treat the rest of debate if you win x argument. In other words, you need to impact your arguments not just on the line by line, but also in the broader context of the debate. The ability to do both in a round is primarily what modulates the speaking points I give.
Framework/T-USFG: I like to think of framework as an all-or-nothing strategy that can either be utilized effectively and persuasively, or poorly and as an excuse to avoid engagement. My ideal block on FW is where you spend time articulating specific abuse and why it implicates your ability to debate with examples. I think specificity is what makes the difference between framework as a strategy for engagement versus framework as a strategy for ignoring the aff. I think a lot of the delineation here is most apparent in the 2NR and whether or not the neg explicitly acknowledges/goes to the case page.
Generally speaking, I think ties to the topic are good. I think topical versions of the aff are something people need to be going for in the 2NR and are lowkey kind of broken given the time tradeoff vs amount of defense generated ratio. I am unpersuaded by fairness as an intrinsic good or impact in itself, and relying heavily on it in the 2nr is not a great spot to be in. For example, I am relatively easily persuaded by the argument that if a current form of the game produces bad outcomes, then whether it’s fair or not is ultimately a secondary to concern when compared to re-thinking the content of the game itself. I think arguments regarding the quality of clash are the most persuasive to me as they can implicate both fairness and education impact arguments fairly intuitively.
I default to competing interps, but I think that aff teams tend to read awful C/Is without realizing it, mostly because they fail to really think through what their counter-model of debate looks like. I think a strong counter-interp really sets aff FW strategies apart, because being able to access the neg’s offense does a lot for you in terms of explaining the specificity of your own impact turns.
T: Like I said, I have very little topic specific knowledge and am a bit out of the loop in regards to the meta. This means I’m probably more willing to vote on a stupid T argument than other judges. This could be good or bad for you.
DA: I like stories. DAs are opportunities to tell good stories. Not much else to say about this.
CP: I wish people slowed down when reading CP texts because it makes it so god damn hard to flow them. I think judge-kick is stupid. If the debate becomes theoretical, please adhere to some kind of line-by-line format.
K: I am most familiar with structural kritiks. Link specificity makes life good. I think framework is incredibly important for both sides to win to win the debate. I think the neg should defend an alternative most of the time. I think the neg should generally pick and choose one or two specific link arguments in the 2NR.
K but on the aff: These debates are largely framework debates, and the winner of that debate gets to decide what happens with the judge and the ballot. I think it’s important to make clear what the aff advocates early on, because often times these affs have too many moving parts, which gets you into trouble vs link debates/presumption arguments. I think ties to the topic are generally good. I usually really like judging these types of affs.
Hello I have been involved in debate for about 7 years and am now a Junior at UT Austin - did Policy in HS w/ Zac Amundson at Mckinney Boyd but I've only done LD since though I've dabbled w/ Progressive PF.
TLDR - In the interest for full disclosure, I strongly believe in the educational and debate benefits of Policy style debate (which includes Kritikal debate as well). I think the Kritik and Policy-style debating is what all debate should be. I think Plans are unequivocally good for debate and you should never read Nebel (I don't care what a bare plural is, this is debate, not an English activity). Consequences matter and its hard to convince me of a Phil FW that is anything but. I think K-Affs should do something (please, literally anything). However, I am a judge for your debate so if you really do not agree with my paradigm and are somehow a Tricks debater stuck with me in the back, I will do my best to judge since I have actually voted on Kant once (that was debated in a consequentialist manner). Note - ironically, most of my students are Tricks debaters so I guess I might be able to judge those debates, I just really don't want to.
Current Conflicts - Dulles TY and RZ, Plano East NG (the last one standing) and AW, Houston Memorial DX and SC, Perry JA, Diamond Bar NC, Ayala AM, Carnegie Vanguard SR, and Clements CY.
For LD (what I'm comfortable w/):
1 - LARP, Topic-Specific K's
2 - Generic K's, K-Affs, T-Framework
3 - Generic Theory (Condo, PICs), Debate Bad K's
4 - Friv Theory (Spec), Induction Fails (I view this as Presumption), Plans Bad
5 - Actual Phil, Skep NC, Combo Shells, Nailbomb Affs, Tricks, Nebel T, Truth Testing, Logic
I think everything in Debate is just Offense/Defense with the exception of Phil Debate.
Tech over Truth though Truth will show up in my speaks.
Fairness is a default impact thought I can be convinced otherwise.
Presumption default Negates unless the Neg is a larger change from the Status Quo.
CPs are only cheaty if you read theory on it.
No I will not auto-Affirm since Shah thinks Affirming is slightly harder.
Experience/Background: I debated policy for 4 years in high school (Centerville High School, OH), I did not debate in college. I started a policy team at Garfield High School, WA in 2014, and have been coaching them since then. I judge ~50 rounds a year split between the local Washington and national circuits. I am a white, cis-gendered, heterosexual male that was educated and socialized within a Western context, which has likely produced certain subtle biases in terms of my epistemological view of the world.
Bottom Line: As a debater I pursued a mix of policy and critical positions, so I'm familiar and comfortable with a wide range of arguments. Because of the openness of my paradigm I tend to judge more K debates than policy debates, so that is where I tend to get the most judging experience. My PhD work was also fairly heavy on critical theory, so I have a good grasp of that lit base. At the end of the day, though, I believe that a debate should be about the debaters, not about me. I will therefore do my best to decide the round based on arguments made by the debaters, rather than based on my own beliefs. Be clear about how you think I should be judging, and there shouldn't be any big surprises.
Biases: Unless I am convinced to do something different, I will generally do/believe the following:
-I will flow the round, and will give weight to arguments that are not answered by the opposing team.
-I will protect the negative team from new arguments in the 2AR. This means that if I cannot connect an argument in the 2AR back to the 1AR, then I will likely give that argument less, or no, weight.
-Completely new arguments should not be made in the rebuttals. I also think that it is difficult - although not impossible - for the negative to introduce completely new off-case positions in the 2NC and then develop them completely.
-I will vote for one team or the other.
-I strongly enjoy overviews at the end of the round. Clearly frame my choice for me, and you're much more likely to get my ballot.
-I personally believe that the open source movement in the debate community too often takes an unnuanced approach, without considering how the open sourcing of knowledge reproduces new forms of inequalities (often along neoliberal/service economy lines, wherein better resourced schools are better able to take advantage of the open knowledge economy). Therefore, I rarely find 'non-disclosure' theory arguments to be persuasive.
-Don't ask me to 'judge kick' things for you. Make a strategic decision for yourself.
-I will vote against you if I think you are clipping cards.
Speaking: Be clear! I like transition words between your arguments, and find that my ears pick up the word 'next' better than 'and'. Not a requirement by any means, but perhaps something you would want to know about me. Please slow down a tad in theory debates, I'll miss arguments if you pepper me with a ton of underwarranted standards. I have found that the online debate format tends negatively impact clarity, due to a range of technology issues - be sure to adjust your speaking practices to account for this format.
I learned to flow in the paper era, and I continue to flow on paper. As a result, my flow tends to be much more orderly if you do your line-by-line straight down the sheet of paper rather than when jumping around. Generally, I think that this straight-down organization will help your line-by-line coverage anyway. If you choose not to organize your speech in this way, I will still flow it. But, my flow is likelier to be messier than I (or you) would like.
Finally, please feel free to ask me questions before the round! I'm happy to answer specific questions about my paradigm.