2022 Blacksnake NIETOC
2022 — Pocatello, ID/US
Policy Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
I really focus on making sure that I can understand what you are saying. Clear and intentional speaking points are something I look for. Off time road maps are always a plus, and I love well thought through voters.
I really watch for follow through on arguments. I like to see defense on your end as well as attacks on your opponents arguments.
Respect is key for me. Please make sure during the debate you treat your opponent with the respect that they deserve.
I've been out of debate for a few years now. Speed is fine, but go normal speed on stuff you want me writing down. Generally anything that makes it easier for me to flow will help you win (good organization is helpful: being clear when making separate tags/args, when switching flows, what part of flow you are on, etc.)
Make my decision easy! I really like framing/impact calc stuff, please don't make me jump through a bunch of hoops to vote for you. Generally fine with whatever, if you have something you aren't sure about just ask! Big fan of T, I don't tend to go for T reverse voting issue type args unless it's really well done. K debate with good framing/role of ballot argumentation is also a plus!
I default to impact calc if not told something different in framing (I also assume T before impact calc). If impact calc is good with you please expand on how I should prioritize stuff (ie extinction first type args make it really easy to vote for you), otherwise you are likely to get a weird/unpredictable RFD.
I debated for four years,I have been judging for a year. I’m a Tab’s judge, that’s about it. Anything goes!
*Updated for 2023*
2018-Present: Policy Coach at Rock Springs High School
2007-2011: NPTE Debate at University of Wyoming: Highest national ranking: 4th; 4x national qualifier for NPTE; attended NPDA/NPTE 6x’s (between both tournaments); highest placing at National Tournament: Semi-finalist; Between 2009-2012 ranked top 20 in NPTE points receiving First Round Bids.
2004-2007: Debate at Rock Springs High School in Rock Springs, Wyoming
Approximate number of rounds judged per year: 35+
Please add me to the email chain: email@example.com
Note: Over the past seasons, I have seen numerous teams use the ‘small schools’ argument on theory and procedural positions. Moving forward, I will not listen to, flow or evaluate these types of arguments. Being from a ‘small school’ with limited financial resources and limited ability to travel nationally, these types of arguments suppose that we as competitors have also a limited ability to intelligently evaluate and present competitive arguments due to our position in the community. Utilizing these arguments in order to establish a model of debate based in assumptions of limited abilities of teams, such as ours, is marginalizing our ability as competitors and individuals, it also places unrealistic perceptions of who we are as policy debaters, thus please refrain from reading these arguments. Fight against, what Brian Delong of IU calls "The Cult of the Card". Taking no notice of this position in round can effect speaker points awarded.
Note 2: NO NEW OFF-CASE POSITIONS IN THE 2NC, I WILL NOT FLOW IT!!!! (unless warranted by offensive language/actions, ethics violations, far-reaching 2AC abuses/skews)
Average Speaker Points: 28.5
Spreading is fine, speed is important but clarity is more important. Slow down on analytics, include them in the email chain. Also slow down 20% on tags and authors. Differentiate between tags and the internals of your cards. With the online format, make sure that you are either decreasing your speed on analytics or you are sending them out in the speech doc. I have noticed in cases that some analysis can get missed with the tubes of the internet.
If it’s conceded it’s true; I'll pic out of really terrible arguments (racism, sexism, otherization, etc.), also reading more cards that aren’t true, doesn’t mean I will prefer.
Policy-------------------X---------------------Ks (Aff or Neg)
I am good with either a policy debate or K v. K debate; just make sure to explain your argument thoroughly.
Analytics have their place, however they should be based in the literature, this also includes theory and theory blocks. Speaker points check...cite literature as an argument and I will bump up .5! (make sure I hear it!)
Conditionality good--X----------------------------Conditionality bad
Conditionality is generally good, but I could be persuaded otherwise. This is a vote down the team theory approach.
Actor/PIC/Consult/Process CP good--X------------------------------- Actor/PIC/Consult/Process CP bad
The CP is an essential tool for the Neg, all are strategic. That being said I am open to theory objections and if won by the Aff, I will reject the argument (if indicated). For Courts CP, run them, but be able to clearly articulate how the Courts would be able to hear the Aff plan; be it a test case (include your test case, or be able to defend the timeframe deficit awaiting the next available test case) or defend SCOTUS using a Writ of Crit to rule. Also, it would be wise to include the basis of ruling within the text of the CP. Args directly questioning the mechanisms by which the CP functions and can be very persuasive for me.*
Politics DA good------------------X------------Politics DA bad
Read the appropriate Tix DAs and you’re good, however, as in 2020, reading Prez Tix DAs two days after the elections is frustrating. DO NOT DO IT!
1AR gets new args--------------X----------------------1AR doesn’t get new args
I will give the 1AR room to present new extrapolations of the Aff positions and to respond fully to the block, however running a new position/link turn/mpx turn or a new response to a Neg position isn’t the best and it’s probably too late in the debate to truly develop said position.
UQ matters most-----------------------------X---Link matters most
A solid link into an argument is incredibly important, no matter how unique an argument is, if it doesn’t apply, it doesn’t apply!
Love T-X---------------------------------------------Hate T
I love T!! Evidence again is very important and please read it. I will prefer your standards if you have evidence supporting. Explain your mpx, violation and why you should win. Make sure that if you are going for T, either send a doc with analytics or ensure that you are clear.
Generics solve your ground claims, all though they might not be the most in-depth or educational, they do provide access to clash, and even if they are generic, there is evidence that supports those claims which is still educational. Limits, however, means that the Neg can produce in-depth arguments due to having a limited research burden and lit base.
Fairness is an mpx--------------------------------X-----Education is an mpx
Debate is a game, but, it is a game is which the motive is academic.
Reasonability opens the door for judge intervention, what I believe is reasonably topical and what the next person does, is inherently different. I’d rather hear the mpx of topicality weighed as a net benefit to the presented interpretations.
Longer ev--------------------X---------------------More ev
Whatever way you want to present your evidence is up to you. Your evidence represents your argument, not the tag, if the tag is misrepresentative or an embellishment of the ev then that argument will be given less weight in the round*
"Insert this rehighlighting"--------X---------------I only read what you read
I will only evaluate only what is read during the speech act, unless told to evaluate a rehighlighting (should be sent in the doc) or told to evaluate a card vs. another card.
Durable FIAT solves circumvention--------------------X---Durable FIAT is not a thing
There are a number of ways that a position can be undermined that FIAT cannot account for. However, FIAT would protect teams from args like “plan doesn’t pass”.
A team doesn't need to hide their argument or not disclose their arguments, not disclosing makes for a sloppy debate and a bunch of people not knowing what is going on.
Analytic Perm-----------------------------X-Evidence-based Perm
The words "Perm Do Both" (or similar analytics) mean nothing to me unless you explain how it functions, what level of competition the perm is testing and read evidence indicating a net benefit to said perm. BTW...I love the perm debate!
Existential Mpx---------------X-----------------Systemic Mpx
Tell me how to vote and what mpx to evaluate. This is also more of mpx weighing analysis, not framework. Framework is how debate should be or included within the realm of debate. Mpx prioritization is a question of the specific magnitude of that mpx.
Letter of the Plan Text-X------------------------Intent of the Plan Text
In regards to construction of the plan/counterplan/advocacy/permutation texts, I have a high threshold for properly written texts, meaning that text must do what is indicated that it will do. In a number of rounds, I have found that teams seems to misunderstand or misrepresent what the letter of the text actually would do. This can be as easy as using the wrong diction, syntax and/or semantics...for example using "apart" meaning not a part of vs. what is intended "as a part of" in the text. Just the simple change to this verbiage means that the functional implementation of the policy would be drastically different and not uphold what the solvency advocate intends. Prior to the round please evaluate texts, and the opponent texts as I am willing to vote/reject on miswrote texts in round, however it does have to be on the flow for me to vote.
I am a quality over quantity judge. I am much more impressed by a few well-made arguments than by throwing everything at the wall and hoping something sticks. I understand that debaters have prepared their material ahead of time and are somewhat tied to the strategy that they have prepared; however, I will always value solid, well-reasoned argumentation, and good communication above some minor technicality. To me, this activity is about communicating your point of view effectively to an audience, and I am your audience. I have a fair bit of debate experience, and can usually keep up with whatever goes on, but that doesn't mean I want to. Speaking at an understandable pace, and using rhetorical techniques to drive home points will not be lost on me, and I prefer that to speed and shotgunning.
In LD I believe heavily in Value/Criterion or framework debate. Nit-picky contention argumentation is fine, but I want to see which side is true as a general rule, so dealing with your opponent's framework is very important. One reason here or there is not terribly meaningful unless they are in service of some grander principle.
For Policy, I think the first paragraph really covers most of it. I'd rather see relevant debate than kritiques, but I understand if that is all you brought. If you are going to sell me on a K, please be convincing, and commit to it. I don't like to see a K followed by, "But if you don't buy that here's a bunch of other stuff." I feel like a K should actually critique the resolution, and if you feel that way, then engaging with it immediately after feels cheap, and disingenuous.
For PF I don't have much of a particular paradigm beyond the one mentioned in the first paragraph. Forum was designed to be accessible, and while it isn't World Schools, I do think that a round of Forum should be understandable, at least mostly, to a layperson. They are short speeches and I get that there is a lot to get through, but making efforts to communicate clearly goes a long way in my book.
Hi! My name is Esmie Hurd (she/her) and I did policy at Bozeman High School in Bozeman, Montana for 3 years. I went to NSDA nationals 3x and have been judging for about 2 years.
I'm a firm believer that the best debates are ones where your arguments are topical and could be understood by a layperson, so you're welcome to pretend I am one. You don't need to explain any policy terminology or theory to me, but you should be able to explain what you're running and why you're running it in simple terms.
Please don't spread! You simply do not need more than 2 or 3 good off-case arguments to win a policy round. If you're running 6 or 7, I'm going to assume it's because none of them are very good. I will immediately vote aff if they claim the 1NC is built as a time suck and if they are right.
I don't like Ks. If you're going to run one, it has to be extremely relevant, topical, necessary, and fairly specific to your opponent's case for me to weigh it. (I have yet to see or participate in a good K debate that meets all of these requirements).
I'm more lenient with CP's, but they have to be good.
I'm fine with new args in the 2N.
I don't mind theory at all if you have a good reason for running it!
Weigh impacts and read evidence. Look for holes, inconsistencies, and double binds you can use. Don't just go in a circle citing new evidence that supports your point and negates your opponent's. We all know you can find evidence saying whatever you want. EXPLAIN to me why their evidence sucks, yours is good, or your argument makes more logical sense. Don't get yourself in a stalemate with cards. An entire voting issue can end in a wash for me if you rely solely on an abundance of authors who happen to agree with you.
And please be kind to each other :)
Good communication, with arguments based on evidence, logic, and persuasion. Reasonable arguments and impacts. Extreme harms such as mass extinction, nuclear annihilation, cannibalism, zombies, etc. require extreme real-world evidence. Not recommended.
Logical fallacies make for weak debate. I watch for logical fallacies, but also expect the opposing team to point out if their opponent is relying on a logical fallacy as part of their case.
I expect the following during debate rounds:
- Debaters should provide their own timekeeping. Judges should be observers and not controlling the round.
- Tag-teaming protects a weak debater by hiding in the shadow of a strong debater and consequently slows their growth. I do not allow tag-teaming in rounds.
- Debate should be focus on discussion of the topic. No ad hominem attacks.
· Delivery: Clear and measured delivery that is not raced through. I like to be able to follow each point with time to flow the debate.
· Evidence: Should be from credible sources that are diverse in their spectrum.
· Argument style: Attack the issue, not the person or their style. A debater should be able to persuade a judge through strength of argument, never Ad Hominem attacks.
I will base my decisions on performance quality for each event. Clear speaking style, familiarity with script or case, accurate pronunciation, and the attitude toward and respect for fellow competitors.
I value clarity in rounds. I can absolutely follow speed, however it does not mean I like to. I am typically not a fan of spreading. I am a flow-judge, If I can't understand you, I will stop flowing. Quality is always greater than Quantity.
Know your evidence and your arguments. It is clear to me when you are presenting evidence but have no understanding of the material.
I like to see clash in a round. Strong V/C. Solid frameworks. Definitions. Impacts.
Century High school Asst. Coach
Major: Political Science, Philosophy, Economics
4 year high school debater.
2x Nats Attendee in Policy
4 time State Qualifier.
Debate: Policy, LD, BQ.
Speech: Panel, Impromptu, Informative.
creativity in debate is sought.
tech > truth as long as you support with reasoning, do the leg work. (default to truth)
speed is fine.
k's are fine.
pic's are fine.
Aff k's are fine.
Remember Debate is a game you play with your friends, Have Fun!
I did policy in high school. I'm not super big on theory, but if you can run it well go for it. I prefer off-the-clock roadmaps. speed is good so long as I can understand what you're saying. I'm fine with any type of argument as long as you can debate it well. during rebuttles please do voters.
Hi, my name’s Sunny Nelson, this is my third year as an assistant coach and my fourth year judging debate. I did public forum and congress, and I also did theater in high school. It’s very difficult for me to describe my paradigm because there is no ONE surefire way to win the round in my eyes. I will be flowing, and I will be paying attention to your communication skills (delivery, body language, etc). Below are some FAQs to help guide you.
I DO NOT SHAKE HANDS even when there is not a pandemic. Air high fives are my preferred alternative.
Kritiks: Acceptable, though I’d prefer you debate the topic.
Counterplans: Good, great even. I like seeing a good counterplan, but I hate condo. If you’re just gonna kick the CP in the 1NR then don’t run a CP.
Topicality: I like topicality when it’s done well, but I think everyone runs T the same, so I’ve grown bored with it.
Theory: Okay with theory, I think it stimulates discussion and furthers the progress of debate, but same with Ks, I would prefer you debate the topic.
Time: You may finish the sentence you are on when time is complete. I will verbally cut you off if you continue to speak past that. Self-timing is okay.
Masks: Off while speaking, if that applies to you.
Speed: I’m comfortable with it but I have no problem telling you to clear your diction up if I can’t understand you
Tag-teaming: Acceptable in policy, but overstepping will cause a loss in speaker points for the current speaker if I feel that they’re relying too hard on their partner.
Strategic dropping: I appreciate strategically dropping arguments as long as you explain why you’re dropping. Do this with caution because if you drop an argument that I really liked, then you might lose.
Evidence exchanges: Finding evidence is off time. Looking at evidence is on time. Discussing evidence is prohibited outside of cross-examination.
Impacts: If you’re bringing up impacts, use impact calc.
Extinction impacts: If you’ve had me as a judge before, you should already know this. I do not weigh extinction impacts. If your opponent brings up extinction, I still want you to address it for flowing purposes, but please do not impact calc it out and use extinction as a voter. The reason why is because I think that extinction is too heavy of an impact to weigh fairly in a debate, and I try to not have "instant wins" in any of my rounds.
Value-criterion and framework debates: I use the VC/FW debate as a way to develop a lens for the rest of the debate. A VC/FW should never be used as a voter. Instead, you should tell me which VC/FW to prefer and why your case meets the VC/FW better. I typically prefer the debater that can tell me why their case meets both value-criterions/frameworks, but if you outright disagree with your opponents VC/FW, don’t concede just because you think it’ll make me happy.
Decorum: Please remain professional during rounds. Some light joking can be appropriate but points will be docked if it gets out of hand. Rude/disrespectful behavior will result in an immediate loss regardless of how good I think your arguments are.
It is important for both sides to clearly outline the burdens of the Pro and Con sides in the round. Whichever team can outline their responsibilities (e.g. "it is the burden of the pro side to demonstrate that, on balance, renewable energy in the U.S. is superior to fossil fuels") and best uphold themvia their contentions will have the advantage. Both teams can and should eventually agree on appropriate definitions and burdens. This is not Policy; vocabulary and delivery should be accessible. This is not Lincoln-Douglas; clash should be over contentions and not "framework." Effective cross examination scores huge points.
Most weight is given to Value and Criterion analysis using your contentions. Whichever side uses their Criterion to analyze and explain the superiority of their Value as it pertains to the resolution will have the advantage. Vocabulary ought to be academic and professional while avoiding jargon-fatigue. Delivery should be easy to follow and flow. Cross examination is a great chance to earn speaker points.
Extremely low tolerance for speed of any kind. Absolute zero tolerance for critiques. I don't want to personally see your or your opponent's cards or case if I don't have to. I want you to use your rhetorical skills to deliver your case to me instead. Vocabulary ought to be suitably technical for the resolution without crossing into legal-speak territory. If the proposal/plan is highly technical, delivery and vocabulary need to make it understandable and coherent.
General/ For all Debate
I am a flow communications judge. That is not to say I will be judging you by how well you speak, but by how effectively you do it. No speed! My decision are primarily derived from the flow. I like clash, I do not want cases to be two ships passing in the night, I want them to crash. Do not simply present your case and defend the whole time, you need to interact with your opponent. If you want something to be remembered on my flow- slow down on the tag or make it obvious that you want me to believe it is important. Do impact analysis whether that is using impact calculation or a simple comparison I do not care. Debatewise, I am an inherently lazy person and I hate guessing. So the more weighing you do for me the better- it eliminates all the guess work that could potentially harm your side of the debate. Moreover, we have different perspectives and beliefs so something that you think is important could become missed if you do not tell me it is important in some fashion. Do not be overtly rude to your opponents- basically I do not wish for ad hominems to come into action. No speed, I think it is inherently bad for debate.
In voting issues do more than note you win on Value Criterion. VC is a weighing mechanism not something that wins the debate simply because yours is better- frankly I do not care which VC is better if one person upholds both better.
In-n-outs are fine, tag teaming keep to a minimal if one partner does all the work it looks bad on you. I prefer lay over prog in terms of theory and Kritics, but if you can contextualize them and flush them out I can keep up.
I respect civility between competitors.
Please speak slow enough so I can follow your arguments. (Saying points really really fast does not automatically make them count if they are impossible to hear)
do whatever you want
Safety comes first. If the round becomes unsafe for you or your partner and you are not comfortable voicing your concerns in the round, please email or FB message me immediately. I want all debaters to know that I am an adult you can trust in this space. I will do as much as I can to protect you and keep this activity safe for you.
I did policy for all 4 years of high school although I have debated once or twice in every debate type.
I am a tabs judge although I will not buy that racism is good. You can read whatever you want and I will vote on it as long as it is explained. I like impact calc as a way to boil down the round, along with voters. I am fine with tag teaming and flex prep. I am ok with speed, but I will say clear if I can't hear you or understand you. If you are going to run shells and arguments like theory, T and framework please include all parts, I will still vote on it but it will decrease its value when voting. Please be respectful of all pronouns within the round and respect your opponents.
Tech over truth
Speed is fine just put me in the email chain firstname.lastname@example.org
Things I love are clash and impacts, and I love good strategy(that means please condense).
I also love the theory debate so don't be afraid to get into that or go for it in the 2nc.
With condo I can vote for anything but if you're running a ton of positions I will probably err aff, whereas if it's only a couple I will probably err neg. On condo i much prefer interps that are you can only run 1 conditional argument, rather than conditional arguments are bad.
You will lose if you clip cards
You will lose if you say anything racist, sexist, etc.
K's are fine but definitely explain them. If it took you a while to understand the K, it will probably take me a while as well and I would love to learn about whatever argument you run. If you run a K I would love to see a ton of clash with the aff case and it must show why the aff is bad.
Tell me how to vote and impact out your arguments
CPs must be mutually exclusive and have net benefit
Signpost as always
T needs to be interp violation standards and voters. Too many times I see teams not extend all of these and if you don't I will not vote on it.
Aff must prove it is better than the squo, neg must prove squo or their advocacy is better than the aff.
I'm okay with being sassy just don't be mean or rude, we should all try to be pals in debate.
I am 100% a tabs progressive judge. I debated for three years in high school on the Boise and Nat circuits, starting in PF, then LD, and finally Policy, graduating in 2018. I have experience from very lay debate all the way up to complex K's, so I am comfortable with everything. I am graduating from ISU in 2022 with a degree in Physics and Math, but I have also taken many classes in philosophy and ethics so I follow analytic and philosophical cases equally well. I am a tabs judge, so run whatever you are most comfortable with, but if you have been looking for an opportunity to use one of your new K's, go ahead and do so. My paradigm is laid out in the following manner: style preference (LD then CX), voting issues, then my familiarity with different philosophies/arguments.
Style Preference (Overall)
Evidence: You've got to have evidence to back up nearly everything you say. If you are simply deriving some sort of contradiction, it is completely alright to not present cards, but if you're introducing philosophy or statistics that aren't obvious to everyone in the room (e.g. you don't have to read the definition of deontology, everyone understands that one), you're going to need evidence or it won't appear on the flow.
Spreading: I am fine with speed and actually I prefer a faster round. In some extreme speed situations, and if it is fine with the tournament directors, then you can flash the cards to me as well. Otherwise, I will just say "clearer" if you are going too fast.
Tech and Truth: I hold tech slightly over I do truth in progressive rounds. For the most part, if you do a better job on the flow than your opponent, even if they make slightly better arguments, I will vote for you. However, if you are making awful 10 second arguments that your opponent has to spend 30 seconds debunking with actual evidence, it will work against you.
Final speeches: I know a lot of debaters who spend their entire final speech making a call to action, and giving a vision of the world of the aff versus the world of the neg. I don't particularly find this useful to the round, it is almost always a waste of a speech. Spend your final speech summing up the arguments themselves, the framework, and why I, as the judge, when I am going through the flow at the end of the round, should vote for your side. If you won on the disad, talk about why you won it, how the link-turn falls, etc. Painting a pleasant image of nuclear war will not help.
Style Preference (LD)
LD is all about ethics: determining what is morally right or morally wrong. I've taken multiple courses in college on ethical theory, so I prioritize framework over all else. That said, you DO NOT need to have a value and a value criterion, I am perfectly comfortable with you reading framework like, "The framework is to reduce structural violence" and then immediately start going into your contentions. Your case does, however, have to make coherent sense under the framework, since the entire resolution is predicated on the ethical dilemma.
Furthermore, I am quite comfortable with frameworks that explicitly state that there is no such thing as morality (e.g. Nietzsche, Blackburn, etc.). I think that these are the most under-utilized arguments in LD, and in my opinion, they are incredibly strong.
Style Preference (CX) Neg arguments
Topicality: Topicality is my least favorite neg argument (unless you are a novice of course). I will still vote on topicality, however if an aff is truly non-topical then I believe you have a better shot of reading theory than you do topicality. Read T if you feel like you have no other option, but don't just throw it in there to waste the Aff's time and then kick it later.
Theory: I am substantially more receptive to theory than I am to topicality. If they read 8 off, please run theory on them. Furthermore, I am susceptible to drop the debater theory, so if what they are running is particularly abusive, then I would be tempted to drop them if that is the solvency to your theory. I'm comfortable with most theory, just make sure to slow down for the violation.
Out of round K's: These are the simplest Kritiks, the ones that everybody knows (cap, biopower, hege, setcol, etc). I love these K's, and think they are perfectly justified in a debate round. Make sure that your alts are reasonable though, I usually won't buy a "drop the debater" alt for an out of round K. By all means, please run them.
In round K's: These are more complex Kritiks, they deal with the discourse generated inside the debate space itself. Critiquing the debate space, or the manner in which the debaters use this space, is also completely valid to me. If the opponents say something misogynistic, by all means, please run a Fem K. These should be built on in round solvency, and this is where a "drop the debater" alt is actually useful, and I might consider voting on. I've run many of these back in my debating days, and think they are very strong, but difficult to use effectively. By all means, please run them.
Disads: DA's are fine. Be creative and don't run something that is oversaturated, though.
K Affs: I love reading, writing, and hearing K affs. That said though, since I have heard so many K affs, I know very well when the aff is strong versus when it is just a bunch of large words designed to confuse the opponent and the judge into voting for you. If you're going to run a K aff, run it because it is a good argument, not because you want a flashy trick to try and confuse everyone in the round. Large, complex arguments are great, just make sure that they have some backing in actual philosophy.
Policymaker Affs: These are pretty straightforward from everything you learned in your first semester as a policy debater. Inherency is essential, make sure that your link chain is solid, and that your impacts are at least slightly believable.
When I judge, I go directly down this line in order to make my decision:
1. Drop the debater arguments: If any drop the debater arguments or turns were issued, I will first go through these and determine if I buy them. I have a relatively high threshold for these.
2. Framework: I will choose the framework with the better arguments attached to it. If your framework is more convincing, I will then judge both cases under this framework. Remember, your opponent can still win even if your framework is stronger, if their case fits better than yours under the framework. In policy rounds where framework isn't issued or carried through on the flow, skip this step.
3. Dropped/Lost arguments: I will then decide which arguments were won, lost, or washed. This is where I decide if there was a successful link turn, if the link chain was broken, or a logical fallacy. I WILL NOT vote based on anything that wasn't explicitly stated in the constructives or rebuttals.
4. Impact Calculus: I determine the weight of the impacts UNDER THE CHOSEN FRAMEWORK. If the eventual framework was minimizing structural violence, then arguments that don't minimize structural violence will be struck off the flow here. If there is a clear winner by this point (which there usually is), then I will make my decision and sign the ballot.
5. Tech: I would say that 99.9% of the time, it should never get to this step. In the case that it somehow does, I will decide who wins by technical proficiency in debate, and who I believe to have the skills of the more competent debater.
Since this paradigm is already monstrously long, I'll list the philosophies/Kritiks that I am most familiar with, so that you can have an idea of your argument's obscurity. These are mostly listed in order of how well I understand the arguments, but is by no means an exhaustive list.
Queer theory (positivity and negativity), Moral non-realism (non-cognitivism, quasi-realism, relativism, etc.), Disaster Porn, Nietzsche, Reproductive Futurism, Feminism, Anti-Capitalism, Biopower (Agamben and Foucault), More Baudrillard, Community Advocacy, Anthropocentrism, Trigger warning, Epistemology, Orthography, Diaspora, Surveillance, Afropessimism.
If you have any questions about my paradigm, please reach out to me through email: email@example.com
I'm a coms judge mainly, so I appreciate a steady talking pace because I'm not conditioned yet to listen and process all of what the speaker says at faster paces. Other than that, I expect good volume, eye contact, body language, etc. When it comes to the arguments I dislike, I am not a fan of end of the world scenario arguments/extreme escalation arguments. I understand that some things could lead to that given the situation in the world today, so if those arguments are reasonably made, I expect a good link to that extreme escalation happening.
Please time yourself and your opponent, I would prefer not to and expect you to take responsibility, and be truthful of time passed.
Info: I am the Speech and Debate Coach at Shoshone-Bannock Jr. Sr. Highschool. I have been in the circuit for about 6 years. I have my bachelors in K-12 Special Education. I am the former president of Idaho State University's Speech and Debate team, and the former president of College of Southern Idaho Forensic team. I love progressive debate, especially gender and social justice based arguments. I am a big flow judge, if you want me to judge certain arguments at the end of your debates, they better have been brought up in every speech, if they are not I tend to consider them a dropped argument. I don't mind dropped arguments especially if they are done strategically. If you tell me why you dropped them, then I won't factor that into my decision for who won the round. Good speaking I believe is necessary for a clean flow and round, but I don't base my decision solely off who spoke the best. Accessibility is the most important thing to me, if your opponents ask you not to spread or ask you to slow down, and you choose not too. I will drop you. I am a pretty heavy tech over truth judge (which means if you tell me the sky is red in your speech and your opponent doesn't disagree with you I'll believe the sky's red) I will vote on anything except impact turns to structural violence. (IE: Racism good). Last but not least, be kind to each other. This means to your partner and your opponents. I enjoy clash, sassiness, and assertiveness because it's all part of the game, but there is a difference between these and being mean. Remember debate is a game you play with your friends. I do not care how well you have been debating, if you are mean you will lose my ballot. Most importantly don't forget to have fun.
I default to judging on the value premise/ value Criterion debate. So, at the end of the round, I will pick the value that I believe was proved to be the best standard to judge the round off of. Then I will use the criterion for that value as the way to look at the arguments in this round. Whoever has won the most arguments that apply to that criterion will get my ballot. I can also be persuaded to judge the round different, but that's up to you if you want to do that, you just have to tell me why I should prefer judging your way. I am cool with Kritiks and Theory, and tend to vibe pretty heavily with these kind of arguments. Make sure to walk me through the arguments though, since I am usually a policy judge I am not in the know with a lot of new and upcoming arguments in LD. Also, if you do run these kind of arguments, impact them out to me and tell me why they matter. I am cool with speed as long as everyone in the round can also do speed, if not everyone can don't do it.
Accessibility is the most important thing for me when it comes to PF. I am a pretty progressive judge and debater and tend to love K's, Theory, and speed, but only if everyone in the round can keep up with all of these. I am a pretty big flow judge so make sure to rebuttal the most important parts of the round, and answer the attacks made on your case in your next speech after the attacks are made. I believe the second rebuttal needs to both defend an attack. In the second final focus I believe it is abusive to make new arguments, so I will not flow new arguments made in these speeches, unless your opponent made new arguments and the second final focus is the only time you can answer them (this should not happen though). In your last Final Focus, I should be able to track your offense back to the speech where the argument started, if I can't do that I won't vote on it.
I love policy debate! I tend to default to stock issues and who makes the largest impact, but I will vote on anything except impact turns to structural violence (at any point in the debate you do this, I do not care how well you were debating, you will lose my ballot). Layer the debate for me, it makes my life and your life a lot easier. In the last two rebuttals it is very important for you to collapse into your most important arguments. Also, it is essential for you to split the Neg Block. I love Kritiks, and tend to pick up Kritiks if they are done correctly, which means they need to have a clear link, impact, alternative, and framework to judge off of. I love topicality, as long as your shell comes with standards, voters and a standard to judge off of. For disadvantages I think they can be pretty necessary for the Neg to prove why we shouldn't do the aff plan, but I won't drop you if you don't have them. Disadvantages should have clear uniqueness, link, internal link(s) and impacts. I love a good theory debate, but you got to tell me why and how this impacts how I judge the round. I am a pretty heavy flow judge, so bring up every argument you want me to judge on in every speech. Also, let me know where you are at when giving rebuttals, if you are rebutting T, tell me you are talking about t. If you are not organized I might not be able to flow your argument where you want me to flow it. If it's not on my flow it wasn't said. I love counter plans, but they need to have a text, be competitive, and have a net benefit, I really enjoy perm debates, but the aff needs to be clear on why the Neg CP is not competitive. For On case debate, make sure to do more than just the generic impact defense. I do not mind analytical arguments, just tell me why you don't need evidence for it. I am cool with spreading as long as everyone in the round can also do speed, if not everyone can don't do it. I don't mind dropped arguments especially if they are done strategically. If you tell me why you dropped them, then I won't factor that into my decision for who won the round.
Don't forget to have fun ya'll, that's why we are all here :)
Richard Wolff - Debate Paradigm
Preferred Debate Styles: Policy, Lincoln Douglas, Big Questions (6 years Judging Experience)
I consider myself a communication (comms) judge but I flow everything. If the flow is not backing you up you will not do well.
Well-developed arguments are much appreciated. Please speak clearly with an emphasis on communication delivery! Speed is not beneficial to your cause if it is too fast to be understood. (Info dumps are not beneficial to your cause) Arguments should each be addressed individually. Have credible evidence to back up your arguments.
Please follow the state/national rules and guidelines for evidence. You may tag team, but keep it minimal and be quiet. I prefer that you write things down or pass the evidence to your partner on a device.
I put a lot of emphasis on a well-developed case. Use criteria and arguments to support a value position. Reference evidence/support throughout the debate and use arguments throughout to support it.
Please use empirical and philosophical arguments that make sense! Please explain your views on critical arguments. Make sure all claims are supported with specific, defined examples. I enjoy hearing a well-structured plan and how it will solve the issue being debated.
Unless it is part of the resolution, Do not link it to nuclear war or extinction. You will lose my vote. Do not go off-topic.
The focus should be on winning the debate and supporting your position on the resolution. Do not attack a person’s style, flaws, or methods. Please respect your opponent and show professionalism from the moment you enter the room to the time you leave. I am less likely to vote in your favor if you are rude or disrespectful.
Email Chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Highland ’20, Columbia ’24
- Summary -- > ex-debater, tech over truth as long as you’re clear; warrant & weigh
· I did debate all through high school in Idaho. Policy for the first two years, PF for the last two with a bit of LD mixed in. Worlds at Nats’19. PF at Nats’20.
· I do flow, please signpost clearly though
· Tech over truth but just make sure you’re giving me warrants
· Speed is okay but please be clear
· Time yourselves but I’ll time as well. I don’t time evidence transfer, just don’t take too long
· I won’t call for evidence unless it’s contested by your opponent with a reason given. Make sure it’s a cut card too
· Please don’t be rude, unnecessarily aggressive, or just plain mean. If you’re sexist, racist, ableist, homophobic, etc. I will drop you.
· Make sure to collapse, depth is better than breadth
· Weigh, tell me why you’ve won, not just where
· If you’re extending offense don’t just tell me to extend it through the flow, warrant it
· Clash is good, impacts are great, voters too
· I’m not very familiar with prog stuff but I do find them fascinating. It’s been a long time since I’ve done policy so if you choose to run a K or something, do so at your own risk, and don’t assume I have any clue what you're talking about
Feel free to email me if you have questions before the round and feel free to ask me in the round as well. As always, good luck and have fun! :)
TL:DR: Flow Judge, Speed is cool, I like specific links on Disadvantages and Kritiks. On Aff, I favor innovative cases. K affs are welcome as well. Just make sure that you communicate your points effectively.
What I look for overall: Effective logical analysis and communication is the framework for which all forensic competition is judged. Make your taglines clear and concise, and make clear logical connections between points. The If-this-then-this chain needs to be crystal clear on the flow, and signpost the arguments you're addressing during rebuttals.
Speed: All good, just makes sure I can understand your taglines. Please speed through your cards though.
Affirmative: I don't have many preferences insofar as the aff case is concerned. Kritikal Affirmatives are welcome as long as you understand the aff and can communicate it effectively.
In the absence of another framework, I will default to a stock-issues, policymaker framework; weighing the value of the aff according to its practical application, feasibility and effectiveness. However, if you propose an alternative framework, I will judge accordingly.
Negative: On-case arguments and Off-case positions with specific links are most favorable. Make your advocacy clear. I am weighing the aff against the negative alternative: The SQ, The K alt or the CP, so clearly state your advocacy and prove to me that the neg world looks substantially more favorable than the aff world.
The Negative Strategy: Target the solvency and/or harms with specific case arguments. Run 2 or 3 good disadvantages and stand behind your advocacy. A good Counterplan or Kritik will have equal swaying power with me to the SQ.