UMN High School Invitational
2022 — Online, MN/US
Novice Saturday Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
Currently the congressional coach at the Lakeville Debate Team
Congress-Specific Paradigm: I rank based on how well each student utilizes the 3 main canons of rhetoric (ethos, logos, pathos). Ethos is measured by how much you successfully engage in congressional role-playing. Logos is measured by how successfully you structure and present a logic-based argument. Pathos is measured by your overall speaking ability. I prioritize in the following order: argumentation > speaking skills > congressional role-playing.
Please note that strong speaking will never outweigh a poor or incoherent argument. This is a debate category, not speech.
To improve your ranking, I want to see extemporaneous speeches with well-warranted and linked arguments (CWI), regardless if it's a construction, rebuttal, or crystallization speech. Asking well-thought-out questions and responding successfully to questions will improve your rank. Showcasing a well-developed understanding of each bill will improve your rank, even if you don't speak on every bill. I am open to progressive debate, so bend/break the rules IF AND ONLY IF you have a legitimate reason to do so. I want to see clash in round, so don't just repeat what others have argued; instead, give me new information, ideas, whatever. Giving a speech to avoid breaking cycle will also raise your rank even if your speech is less prepped.
POs: Major mistakes WILL cost you. Small mistakes can be forgiven, especially if caught immediately and corrected, but continuous errors will lower your rank. The round relies on you, and judges will catch your precedence mistakes even if the chamber doesn't. I will only provide a high ranking to a successful and accurate PO.
Experience: 4 years of PF in high school in Minnesota (2012-2016), 4 years of intercollegiate Ethics Bowl (2016-2020). I have a B.S. in communication arts (concentration in political rhetoric) and computer science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I've judged PF almost every year since 2016 and have experience judging Congress, Policy, and Ethics Bowl. I currently work in tech.
Speaking: I have a preference for clean, concise, and persuasive speech. This will affect the speaker points, but my preference will not interfere with who wins each round. I will do my best to keep up with spreading, but I am not as experienced. Any excessively rude remarks will seriously hurt your speaker points score. Be polite.
Argumentation: I will follow any theory or progressive-level argumentation presented to me, but again I am not as experienced with this so be as clear as possible. Be consistent, use evidence as needed, and provide strong warrants to link into impacts. I will ignore new arguments brought up in the summary and final focus.
Judging: I attempt to come in with an open mind to the best of my ability. The choice I make depends on everything said during the round, and nothing more. The winner of each round will be determined based on the framework provided to me, the best-substantiated framework if there is conflict, any progressive framework if argued, or a broad act utilitarian cost-benefit analysis as default. My advice is to extend your arguments consistently, don't drop major counterpoints, and explain why your arguments ultimately outweigh your opponent's.
I am happy to answer any questions or concerns and provide advice as needed. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
My name is Jamie Maiers, and I am a teacher coach at Tartan High School and a PhD student at the University of Minnesota. I have been working with MNUDL for three years and have been a staff member at MDAW (summer camp).
As a judge, I really like an organized debate. I want you to signpost and understand what it is you are actually saying. Spreading is fine, but if I can't understand you (either because you're mumbling OR you don't tell me what you're talking about) we're not going to have a good time.
Debate is a team sport so treat your partner kindly. Additionally, I expect you to be a good sport. Treat your opponents with the kindness you would hope to receive.
I am a teacher first, debate coach second. This means I am more than happy to talk to you about ANYTHING you have questions about regarding the round. I leave lots of detailed feedback and am happy to respond to email. It is my goal for all novices to get better, not just my own students. Feel free to reach out.
Senior U of M, 4th year of policy debate, 4 years of high school debate.
I am not a fan of overviews.
Head Coach--Farmington High School (2020-date)
Co-JV/Varsity coach at Rosemount High School for 6 years (2014-2020)
Head Coach--Forest Lake, MN (1995-2000)
Assistant Coach--Mankato East (1993-1995)
Concordia College (1989-1993) (NDT twice)
Rosemount High School (1985-1989)
Staff--Concordia College Debate Institute, Minnesota Debate and Advocacy Workshop (MDAW)
Committee to develop the Novice Packet in Minnesota
To answer this ahead of time---yes, I want to be on your email chain. Ask me for my email.
Generally more tech>truth. I debated in a world where the K was brand new and my partner and I won a lot of rounds on rhetoric K’s. K’s that relate to more traditional political concepts make the most sense for me (Cap, Biopower, Neolib, Abolition, Feminism, IR, etc) in the context of a policy debate round. I was not a philosophy major and I don’t get all excited about the nuances of Baudrillard, or other high theory topics. Lots of big, academic words don’t impress me and honestly, I probably don’t understand them in the same way you do so if you choose to run args like that, know that I probably don’t get, or care, about the distinctions you are making and I don’t really see how or why that arg is relevant to the debate round.
Policy maker at heart--I’d rather think about the consequences of plan than about academic discussion of high theory
If I don’t understand your argument, I don’t want to vote on it. Signposting will probably help you here.
If I can’t understand you (spreading, etc), I can’t vote on it
I won‘t judge kick for you. It was your strategy, not mine.
In this technological world, Disclosure Theory args strike me as a whine unless there is some sort of egregious situation that occurs.
I am a teacher and I look at debate through that lens. Education is the main reason why I do this activity.
I believe that the argument construction provided by Toulmin (claim/data/warrant) is the bedrock upon which competitive debate has been built.
I don't like judge intervention, you should be telling me how to vote in the final two rebuttals.
Online debate: I have coached and run tournaments this fall on line. I have also taught online both this past spring and this fall. However, I have not judged a lot this fall because of tabbing tournaments so I am not “expert” but I understand enough to not be intimidated by it. I do know that smart debaters will sacrifice a degree or two of speed in order to improve the clarity. I will tell you if you are not clear. I don’t want folks talking over each other during cross-ex. I will be patient with tech, but also mindful that we have a schedule and it is best to stick to that. If tech issues become extreme, I’ll ask the tab room how they want to proceed. I will probably not have my camera on so get verbal confirmation that I am there and ready to go before you start speaking.
I am also a fan of debaters being good human beings. Being kind, polite and remembering that we are all humans goes a long way in my book. If you are debating a less experienced team, there is no glory in crushing them into the ground. Remember, you were inexperienced at one point, as well. Additionally, I believe people should be consistent, both in terms of their arguments and, in the world of the K, in their advocacy. Post-Rounding me is also not cool. My decision is my decision and that will be your privilege when you are a judge.
If you have other questions, or concerns, please ask.
Past useful info: I debated in high school in Kansas (Shawnee Mission East, 1995-1998), and in college for Macalester (1998-2001) (all policy save a semester of HS LD and rogue college parli tournaments). I coached at Blaine High School (2000-2002), then the Blake School (2002-2003), some freelancing for Mankato West, Shawnee Mission East, and others (2003-2007), then for Como Park briefly when I came back to work for the UDL (2007-2008) and some side helping as needed at St. Paul Central. I coached college at the University at Buffalo and the University of Rochester (2003-2007). I ran logistics for the MNUDL from 2007-2011, when I graduated from law school and became a lawyer. I have judged 5-10 middle school or high school debates a year since 2011, and judged 25 policy debates last year (2022-2023).
General notes: (1) don't be a jerk; (2) I don't care about tag-team cross-ex, just don't yell at each other; (3) don't steal prep; (4) debate is fun and I'm so glad you get to experience doing it, and I'm honored to get to participate with you.
Argument notes after judging at two TOC-qualifying tournaments after a 15-year hiatus: debates are fundamentally the same as the way they were when I stopped judging a while back. I have no problem keeping up with you all, though on computers with speech docs I'm still working out how to flow and listen and read evidence all at the same time. I find the practice of interspersing theory arguments with substantive arguments a little hard to follow at times, especially when you put the substance parts in your speech docs but not the fast theory parts. If you want me to actually vote on these arguments or use them as direction on how to evaluate other arguments, like a permutation or a CP (instead of just using them for the time tradeoff or to make sure you don't drop something) you would be well served to make sure I can understand you.
If someone who knew me a long time ago is giving you advice on how to debate in front of me, I will say that I am fundamentally the same person I have been since my very first day of debate practice but that the main way that I have noticed that it feels like I think about debates differently now is that I am less inclined and a harder sell on arguments that are either blippy theory or fundamentally stupid (and recognized by all parties as such). I am a hard sell, for example, on the concept that the cap kritik that people read when I was in high school is still cheating 25+ years later, or that dumb unexplained voters mean that teams should lose absent some compelling justification.
BUT, and MOST CRITICALLY: Fundamentally, I don't care what arguments you read. I want you to do what you think you do best and have a good time doing it. I would DRAMATICALLY prefer to watch a good debate on your preferred argument than a bad one on stuff you think I'd like. I am generally very well read and aware of stuff going on in the world, but have a humanities/literature/law school and not a foreign policy/science background. I have general proclivities and stuff I know better than other stuff or literature I've actually read (and I have a fairly low threshold for gendered/racist/hate-filled/exclusionary behavior and/or language), but it's your debate, and I will do my absolute best only to evaluate the arguments that get made in the debate round. If you have questions about specific arguments, I'm happy to answer them.
Gosh, I needed to update this...
I'm a long-time coach with a lot of policy debate experience. I pay attention to what's going on and try my best to meet you at your level. I've judged every weekend this season.
Include me on the email chain please - email@example.com
I prefer a more traditional approach to debate - policy evaluation, dead bodies, uniqueness, etc. Not ruling out other methods, I'll listen intently, but it might be more of a roll-of-the-dice.
Disclose in a fair and honest manner, adhering to Kant: "act only in accordance with that maxim through which you can at the same time will that it become a universal law.”
(1). K vs. K debates leave me confused. K vs. Policy makes more sense, still not your dream K judge. K's of institutions and methods make more sense than K's of in-round whatever. If you are winning a framing issue, tell me why it matters - how does it interact with impacts?
(2) T/Framework. If there is a plan that's even in the ballpark of being topical, don't make T your 2NR strategy. If there is no plan, my ears are much more sensitive to T. But again, not ruling that method out either.
(3). Embedded clash. I'll do my best but I'm going to do the least work for both teams possible. Back in my day, we mocked the lump-and-dump teams without mercy and I still carry that bias. Times change, I'll do my best.
My hope is that you will have enjoyed Debate so much that you will be a lifetime supporter of the activity.
I am a lay parent judge who competed in high school speech (extemporaneous speaking) for several years. I had limited experience with LD debate. This is my first time judging policy debate.
Policy Debate Judging Notes
I am generally comfortable with the arguments in the novice case limits. I am fine with tag teaming in cross-ex as long as you do not dominate your partner's questioning time.
I am generally fine with spreading, but within reason. Be coherent while spreading, and I will have no issue with your speed.
Lincoln-Douglas Debate Judging Notes
Value/framework debates have a place in LD. You should convince me that your value/criterion is stronger than that of your opponents by providing solid contentions that clearly support your value/criterion.
Respond to your opponent's arguments. Failing to address the opponent's arguments suggests you either agree with the arguments or do not have counterarguments.
Any hate speech will result in an automatic drop and a loss in speaker points. You will also be reported to Tabroom. I expect respectful behavior.
you can just refer to me as Benjy or Judge no preference. he/him
current college debater at UMN
don't know a crazy amount about the topic so err on the side of overexplaining things especially links and internal links.
I will clear you if I can't understand you but also if you speak so fast I can understand you but not flow every argument you make I can't factor that into my decision at the end of the round. (Presume I can, just be aware of things like pen time and blippy extensions)
condo: pretty high, think 4 is almost always fine, 5 with planks and without cards is where my eyebrows start to raise. 2NC CPing out of a straight turn on a DA is sillyness and instantly turns me into John Katsulas. (okay not literally auto-lose but I almost certainly I err aff in an evenly debated condo 2ar)
K: will vote on it but am a harder sell. I believe there is a burden on the neg to prove a high bar for links and am quite persuadable to clever logical aff explanations of how the perm could function. They don't link just because they chose to be topical (ie usfg or topic generic links) and the aff causing demilitarization could absolutely be a building block for broader marxian revolution. Additionally I'm not the most educated on k lit so you're going to need to explain to me what your cards are saying moreso then just a quick prewritten block at the top of the 2nc.
T: probably more friendly to it then most judges are, am a sucker for clear 2nc extended into 2nr explanations of what the topic looks like under the affs interp. This shouldn't need to be said but if you're going for it go for it 2nr should be 5 mins straight of T.
CP: Love em, think a clever completely analytical counterplan can 100% be the best 2nr. Also probably more friendly to consult/agent generally techy cp's over most. Probably my most unpopular opinion is solves better is a viable reason to vote neg. Well constructed counterplans that have few deficits but avoid the ones you made on case to me means the negative has won the debate.
Generally I believe debate is a game and will prefer things like tech>truth unless I'm told to think otherwise. I'm probably more expressive then I should be with my face if I look confused I am most likely confused.
If you made it this far you probably care about your speaks so give a genuine complement to your opponent on something they did well after the debate and I'll give you a bump.
k affs: probably not going to be the judge you want for this, regardless I will vote on them, I need to be convinced of three main things:
1. There is no topical version of the aff that could be ran under the current resolution, so you need to prove why a tva given by the neg isn't possible. Just because they use the usfg isn't enough to inherently make a tva undebateable.
2. Why a ballot matters: What out of round impacts do you access exclusively through getting the ballot that you don't get if you come in and have the same debate but lose.
3. You wholeheartedly believe in what you're running and that doing so will positively impact the debate space (/world if that's your vibe) not just to get a ballot and dodge clash. If you aren't willing to offer to have an hour and a half discussion about your k aff and coinflip for who gets the round please don't run a k aff in front of me. I strongly believe due to the competitive nature and timed speeches a discussion will achieve far more and I hope that's your goal if you're running a k aff.
Brief note for LD/PF: All of my experience is in policy debate. I am less familiar with the norms of other formats. I believe that I would be considered a larper in LD terms.
Note: I enjoy a joke arg, but you must commit to the bit!!!! Additionally, I am keeping track of some UM Brooks treasure for Skye.
I was a college debater for Concordia Moorhead. I am comfortable judging both policy and critical arguments. Do note that I ran mostly biopower and cap, so I may not be as familiar with other kriticks. During the final rebuttals I want you to write my ballot for me. In other words, tell me the story of the debate round and why I should conclude that you have won. That means impact comparison, framing, and condensing the debate down to its core components.
I don't like it when debaters sacrifice clarity to speak faster. I will stop flowing if I have to call clear an excessive number of times. I also really don't like it when you slow down for the tag and speed up for the card body. To me, that says that your evidence isn't meaningful or significant and I should treat the body of cards as just filler. I will call speed if you're going too fast for me to flow.
I like it when you give a speech off your flow without any blocks.
Theory- I expect you to slow down for denser theory blocks. Otherwise, I cannot evaluate arguments I cannot write down. I will vote on theory, but I don't have any dogmatic stances on issues like conditionality or PIC/Ks.
The K- I enjoy k vs policy aff debates. I don't think you need an alt if you have won sufficient offense on their reps or epistemology, but a strong alt makes it easier to vote for you.
K affs- I will vote for K affs, but I expect robust answers to framework.
DAs/counterplan- I am waiting for the day an aff team puts theory voters on a politics DA.
Topicality- I have judged mostly novice this year, so I'm not up to date on the T meta. I want to see more T debate in Minnesota, so I will be happy to see some T.
Overall, good luck and have fun. I want debate to be a fun and educational experience for all participants. If you have any questions feel free to ask. Please include me in the email chain, but I try to avoid reading evidence unless absolutely needed.
I am beginning to judge more events other than just policy but I have almost zero experience with other forms of debate.
Please include me on the email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org. Everyone gets plus .1 speaks if I'm not asked to be put on, and I'm just automatically put on the chain. Ask me any questions about my paradigm in person or via email, although I try to update it regularly with the most important stuff.
Ks on the neg are always fine and for what I think about T-USFG/FW, see the very bottom below the fairness slider. But the bottom line, I don't care what you read as long as you convince me to vote for you, I will.
Stuff related to online debating:
Don't delete analytics from the speech doc, please. I'll probably dock your speaks if I remember to. Online debate is harder to flow than in-person so it's good practice if you want me to catch everything you're saying.
Please slow down a little (especially on T and theory*) because the number of arguments I flow is rarely equal to the number of arguments the speaker actually makes, and those numbers will be much closer to each other if everyone prioritizes clarity and slowing down a bit. Don't just read this and think you're fine. Slow down, please. I know half of all judges ever have something like this in their paradigm but I'm a slower flow than average because I flow on paper.
Read a plan--------------------------x--------------Do whatever (probably at least sorta related to the topic)
Tech--------------x----------------------------Truth -- I hate myself for it, but I am kind of a truth-orientated judge in that I really don't want to vote for silly args, and the worse an arg is, the more leeway I give to answering it
Theory-------------------------------------x--------- Substance -- condo is really the only theory arg that gets to the level of "reject the team", I simply feel that most other theory args are reasons to reject the arg, not the team. Unless the negative goes for the CP/K to which the theory applies in the 2nr, it's a tough sell for me to vote on, "They read [insert abusive off-case position], they should lose".
Conditionality good--------x---------------------Conditionality bad -- this being said, I would much rather see 4-6 good off, than a 7+ mix of good and bad
States CP good (including uniformity)-----------x----------------------50 state fiat is bad
Always VTL----------------x---------------------Never VTL
Impact turn (*almost) everything-x-----------------------------I like boring debate -- to add to this, I'm huge sap for impact calc and specifically rebuttals that provide a detailed narrative of the impacts of the debate and how they interact with the other team's. Impact comparison and impact turns are often the deciding factors for me in close debates
*Almost meaning I'll vote on warming good, death good, etc. but obviously not on args like racism good or sexism good
Process CP's are cheating----------------------x---------------Best fall-back 2nr option is a cheating, plan-stealing CP
Lit determines legitimacy-------x-----------------------Exclude all suspect CPs
Yes judge kick the CP--x-------------------------------------------Judge kick is abusive -- as long as the 2nr says to kick the CP, I'm gonna kick it and just analyze the world of the squo vs the aff and I'm pretty sure there's nothing the aff can really do if condo bad isn't a thing in the round. Heck, I judged a debate where the CP was extended for 30 seconds and not kicked but I still voted neg because the neg won a large risk of a case turn. What I'm saying, is that when you are aff and the neg goes for more than just the CP with an internal NB, beating the CP doesn't equate to winning the debate outright
Presumption----------x--------------------------Never votes on presumption
"Insert this rehighlighting"---------------------x--I only read what you read
I flow on my computer ---------------------------------------x I'm gonna need to borrow some paper
I try to give out speaker points that are representative of how well you performed in the round compared to the tournament as a whole. I try to follow the process detailed here, but I often find myself handing out speaks sort of indiscriminately. Getting good speaks from me includes being respectful and making good choices in the rebuttals (smart kickouts, concessions, and flow coverage).
Clash! I like judging debates where the arguments/positions evolve about one another as opposed to simply in vacuums.
Don't be sloppy with sources. For example, you say, “Read the Jones 10 ev after the round!” I read it and it sucks. In the post-round, it becomes, “I meant to say Roberts, not Jones,” or “There were three pieces of Jones ev I meant the 1AR card.” That's a "you" problem. Effective communication is good.
Fairness is an impact---------------x--------------Fairness is only an internal link -- My threshold is usually how close your aff is to the topic in the abstract, i.e. econ inequality and nukes. I do feel like in the end the main goal of doing debate is to win. The activity serves a ton of other purposes but at the end of each debate, one team wins, and one team loses. This doesn't mean that I think reading a planless aff is unfair and can be convinced that a "fair" debate produces something bad, but it's going to be very hard to convince me that debate is not a game.
Topic education is decent for an education impact but policymaking and policy education are meh. Critical thinking skills can also be extracted from debate and critical skills about calling out state action and for revolution planning.
If you don't read a written-out advocacy statement: Impact turn framework----------x---------------------------Procedural
Debate and life aren't synonymous but I understand that many of your lives revolve heavily around debate, so I will respect any arg you go for as long as you make smart arguments to support it.
Chris McDonald (He/Him) - email@example.com
Use the above email for any email chains during the round.
Head Coach Eagan High School in Minnesota
While I mainly have coached and judged Policy Debate for the past 35 years I do judge my fair share of LD and Public Forum Debate Rounds.
Policy Debate - Please know that while I used to judge a lot of rounds throughout the season in policy debate it has been 5 years since I judged more than just a handful of policy rounds. I do work with my school's varsity policy team.
My philosophy has pretty much remained consistent throughout my career. I consider policy debate to be a test of policy based ideas between two teams. How those teams approach the topic and frame the debate is entirely up to them. Below are a few things to know about me on some specifics but please know my primary objective is for us to have an enjoyable round of debate.
Delivery Speed - Since it has been a few years for me since last judging lots of policy debate my ability to listen to really fast debate has faded. Please keep it to a slightly slower speed of delivery especially using the online platforms. I will let you know if you are unclear or going too fast by verbally indicating such during your speech. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being oratory speed and 10 being approaching the sound barrier (only joking here) I would place myself as a 7 these days.
Topicality - I enjoy a good topicality debate but have found that over the years teams are taking too many shortcuts with the initial development of the topicality violation. I prefer topicality to have a clear definition, a clearly developed violation, standards for evaluating the violation and reasons why it is a voting issue. For the affirmative side you really need to engage with the topicality violation and provide a counter interpretation that supports your interpretation of the resolution. Topicality is distinct from framework.
Framework - I also enjoy evaluating a debate when framework is clearly articulated and argued by both the affirmative and negative sides. Framework is focused around how you would like me to evaluate the arguments in the round. Do you prefer a consequentialist framework, a deontological framework, etc..
Critiques - I am fine with critical approaches by the negative and the affirmative sides. For the affirmative please keep in mind that you will need to defend your critical affirmative as either a topical representation of criminal justice reform or why it is important for us to debate your affirmative even if it isn't necessarily within the boundaries of the topic.
Flow - Please label all arguments and positions clearly throughout the debate. Signposting has become a lost art. Debaters doing an effective job of signposting and labeling will be rewarded with higher speaker points.
Disadvantages - Please be certain to articulate your links clearly and having clear internal links helps a great deal.
Counter plans - I think counter plans are an essential tool for negative teams. Please note that I am not a big fan of multiple conditional counter plans. Running a couple of well developed counter plans is better than running 4 or 5 underdeveloped counter plans. Counter plans should have a text to compete against the affirmative plan text.
Theory - General theory in debate rounds like conditionality and that are fine but have rarely been round winners without a lot of time devoted to why theory should be considered over substance.
If you have any questions please let me know and I will happily answer those questions.
1. I am not a fan of theory as it plays out in LD debate rounds. Most of the theory that is argued is pretty meaningless when it comes to the topics at hand. I will only consider topicality if the affirmative is presenting a plan text in the round. I ask that the debaters debate the topic as it is written and not as they would like it to be.
2. Beyond my dislike for theory you are free to pretty much debate the round as you see fit. Please keep your speed to a level where you are clear especially considering buffering time with online platforms you should probably slow down from what you think you are capable of during in-person debates.
3. Evidence should be shared using an email chain. Please include me at firstname.lastname@example.org
4. If you have specific questions please ask. I will disclose at the end of the round but I will also respect the tournaments schedule and work to keep it on time.
1. Evidence is very important to me. I prefer direct quotation of evidence over paraphrasing but understand that paraphrasing is allowed in PF. Please make note of the new NSDA rule regarding paraphrasing. Source Citations: make sure that you present enough of a source citation that I should have no problem locating the evidence you present in the round. This would include the author or periodical name and date at a minimum. So we are clear Harvard in 2014 is not a source citation. Harvard is a really great University but has, to my knowledge never written a word without the assistance of some human that attends or works at Harvard.
2. There is to be no game playing with regards to evidence sharing during or after the round. If you are asked for evidence by your opponents you must produce it in a timely manner or I will discount the evidence and only treat the argument as an unsubstantiated assertion on your part. Even if it means handing over one of your laptops you must provide evidence for inspection by the other team so that they may evaluate it and respond to the evidence in subsequent speeches.
3. Prep Time - you are only provided with 3 minutes of prep time. Please use it wisely. I will only give a little latitude with regards to untimed evidence sharing or organizing your flows, but please be efficient and quick about it.
4. Argument choices are completely up to the debaters. I prefer a good substantive debate with clear clash and that the debaters compare and weigh the arguments they feel are important for their side to prevail as the debate comes into focus but the substance of those arguments is completely within the control of the teams debating.
5. Please respect your opponents and treat everyone involved in the debate round with the utmost respect. Speaker points will be effected by any rude behavior on the part of a debater.
6. I will disclose and discuss my decision at the end of the round so long as there is time and the tournament stays on schedule.
7. Finally, please remember to have fun and enjoy the experience.
I view myself as a traditional but flexible LD judge. When making a decision I try to keep an open mind, and only consider the arguments that have been presented in the round as they were presented. I don’t believe in filling in the blanks for the debaters. I will entertain any argument as long as it is well explained. Speed is not a problem.
I do believe that the resolution is important, and should be interpreted precisely and with reasonable assumptions about drafters intent. Unless you tell me to do otherwise, In making a decision, I start with the resolution, then move to the value, then the criterion, then the contentions. In most rounds that I hear, the value is basically ignored, but I am happy to listen to debate on the value. In my view, Morality and justice as they are typically presented are not values, at least not ones worth debating. They are broad conceptions that have no meaning unless informed by actual values upon which there can be clash (freedom, responsibility, equality, human life, etc.). Every villain thinks s/he is moral and just, and is when viewed through the values that inform them. The question is, are the values that inform one persons conception of morality more or less valid than those that inform another person’s.
So, when deciding a round, unless you explicitly request that I decide the round in a different way, and either get your opponent to agree or out-debate your opponent on why your judging criteria should be used, I will use what is said in the round to determine: first, what should be valued (generally based on how it links directly into the resolution), second, what criterion should be used to determine if the value is upheld, and finally, which debater best upholds the criterion.
Hi I'm tom and I go by He/Him pronouns. I am currently The head coach for Roosevelt High school and have been debating for 7 years. I am currently a student at Augsburg.
Please add me to the email chain: Tommilmick@gmail.com
I have debated at all levels of debate and am very familiar with all arguments. For most of my time as a debater I was a strictly policy debater. My normal rounds would usual look like either a soft left policy arg on aff and a Cp and Da heavy neg. However in my last year of debate I heavily used Ks on both the aff and neg specifically Dino earth ( If you want to learn more or have any questions you can absolutly ask or email me about it i really enjoy it). My Kritik literature however is not super deep so there are plenty of terms in that space that I wont understand. I think debate is about having fun and making arguments that you truly care about and are intrested in.
I will vote for any form of argument (Except Baurillard Ks) you make but you have to give me clear reasons why and have a good foundation of evidence for it.
SF Roosevelt ‘20
Do what you want. Avoid being mean.
I am not a fan of debates where debaters do not explain things. I am more susceptible to your argument if I understand the words you’re saying.
I am a tech oriented debater and thus a tech oriented judge.
Speed 7/10. Please tell me how to evaluate debates or I will default to pragmatism and decide myself.
Have fun and debate hard!
Hey, my name is Teddy! I am an assistant coach for Farmington (MN) and I currently debate for the University of Minnesota.
Topics that I have debated: arms sales, CJR, anti-trust, legal personhood, & nukes; coached: water protection, NATO, & redistribution.
My general view of debate rounds is that debate is a game that tests policy options to solve problems outlined by the resolution of that year--the aff must identify an issue, propose a solution, and then prove that that solution works. The neg must test the strength of that policy, which can be done various ways with multiple positions to make sure the policy is thoroughly tested. I generally default to tech--but can easily be persuaded truth outweighs/comes 1st. Education can spill over (depending on method), debate is a game--but NOT one where “anything goes”--remember to be decent. I have a tendency to view myself as a policy-maker most often, BUT value education highly and can be convinced to switch my evaluation/calculus.
**I worry that my paradigm scares people away from reading Ks in front of me--here are my K-specific thoughts: While I default to a policy-maker if not given a specific-paradigm to follow, I think that the 1AC has the ability to dramatically switch what calculus I use to evaluate the round--it's just up to them to give me a role as the judge & warrant it out. On the neg, I think that the K is a totally reasonable way to prove that the AFF is bad to implement or makes the harms within the squo worse--I prefer Ks that have unique or specific links to the plantext, the assumptions or representations of the aff (including rhetoric), and/or have a way to solve those issues via the alt (or at least prove they don't have to). Framework & theory args that are framed around education are particularly convincing to me.
**If you can tell me what state the world's largest egg is in, I have treasure for you.
If your position requires a TW, don't read it in front of me. Send pre-written blocks/analytics/extensions in the chain for accessibility reasons, especially if you intend to read them one right after the other or really fast. Rhetoric does matter and has an immediate, irreversible impact--please still impact out these arguments in the round, though.
If I am judging a category that isn't Policy/CX: please be patient--I'm still learning. Yes, I'm fine with speed. Please make an email chain. Send out everything you intend to read the first time.
***My email is no longer on my paradigm for personal reasons--iykyk--so just ask for it before round.
Hi! I'm Kate and my pronouns are she/her. You can contact me or add me to the email chain at email@example.com
Some background info for you:
I debated for Rosemount 2017-2021 and I have coached at Highland Park (St. Paul) since 2021. I am currently studying sociology and data science at Macalester College.
Minneapple 2023: I don’t have any experience judging varsity LD. My background is in policy and last year I judged one novice LD tournament. I judge based off my flow and attempt to intervene as little as possible. The best way to win my ballot is to give me judge instruction in the final rebuttal.
Edit: You should probably slow down in front of me. Im not super adjusted to fast circuit rounds.
If I'm your judge:
First, I want you to enjoy debating and feel comfortable. If there is a way I can support you please don't hesitate to reach out beforehand or whenever a concern arises. I also really value education and I hope you do too. It will make me happy to see you doing your best to learn for yourself, and with your partner and opponents.
Second, I am looking for you to write the ballot for me in your last rebuttal. I don't want to have to do any work for debaters when writing my rfd so if you provide me with a clear way to evaluate impacts and how to resolve the round you will be in a great spot. With that being said, I vote off my flow but I'm not perfect, so it's your job to tell me where and what you want on my flow (aka signposting and clarity of speech are important). I also prefer that you say an abbreviation of the tag or what the argument is instead of the author when referring to a card because that's easier to flow for me but not a big deal. Tbh, I don't enjoy tricks or out spreading your opponent. I think the best rounds are when debaters are making smart and competitive choices but also considering others in the round and how you conduct yourself affects the community.
As far as argument-specific questions go please feel free to reach out to me by email and I'll respond as soon as I can. My best advice to you is to read what you want to! Debates are way more fun when debaters care about and write their own arguments. I like the K on both sides and I'm pretty open to any argument. Keep in mind if you have a super technical argument or theory you may want to slow down in front of me. A reminder for JV/novice (and varsity too sometimes lol) it is ok (and good) to keep your argument options open through the block but please condense down in your last rebuttal and choose what you are going for. I know it can be hard to pick especially when you have multiple flows to choose from but you are wasting your time going for two different arguments if there isn't a specific reason to do so (ex. net benefit).
Reece Peters (he/him)
I debated at Eagan High School for four years, three of which being on the Policy Debate team. Although not debating there, I'm a college graduate from the University of Washington with a varied range of interests including Philosophy, Mathematics, Computer Science, Linguistics, and Political Science.
I've been a debate coach at Eagan High School for the better part of the last two years and have around three years of formal judging experience across all range of skill levels.
Yes, it's fine but be respectful of your partner. Speaks will suffer if you are the only one talking.
I tend to abide by the principle that debate is a game meant to improve the education and public speaking of its participants, but I am open to a wide variety of differing interpretations of the activity so long as they are well-substantiated. Without the presence of super-ceding frameworks, I default to a humanitarian-utilitarian policy maker.
I will not make arguments for you that aren't on the flow. If you want me to think something, you have to say it in round- better known as "tech over truth."
No specific argument by default will be rejected by me. If you can argue it, I want to hear it.
Topicality- Topicality is certainly a stock issue, but it's up the neg to show why a non-topical aff is bad (even if the violation is blatant or conceded.) This is still true in the context of K affs which don't defend a topical advocacy- however- if a sufficient enough job is done, I do tend to err neg in these rounds.
K- Though I have a modest background in cutting, running, and judging Kritiks, I've never had the greatest relationship with hyper dense or esoteric K-theory (Think Deleuze-esque). If you are going to run these types of arguments, be prepared to give clear and compelling rebuttals which tell the story of the K.
Theory- I have a really hard time voting for a theory position that doesn't take at least a significant portion of the last two speeches (significant determined by the context of the round). In round abuse is key for the most convincing ballots.
Condo- I like condo bad arguments more than most judges, but don't expect reasoning which boils down to "I'm overwhelmed" to secure the win.
Performance- no issue with it!
Speed is totally fine with me, but I find my ability to flow comes best when it is clear. I love it when tags are slowed down, and analytics especially need a clearer (often slower) explanation compared to card text. Even card text should be slowed down if you want me to flow a specific internal warrant.
In general, abide by the rule that if you want me to pay specific attention to something, or vote on something later in the round, you're going to win more if you emphasize it.
In the same vein, I hate purposefully obfuscated arguments for the purposes of confusing the other team. To get a gist of my brightline, removing position names in the doc is fine -- changing position names to be less standard is iffy -- answering clarifying cross-ex questions with purposefully confusing jargon or tautologies, is not (and yes, I notice.)
Quick life hack: looking at me while giving your speech will give you a ton of information about how it's being received (am I thinking, flowing, nodding, confused-looking, typing, time-concerned etc.) This can be utilized to your advantage.
If I were to emphasize any of these categories the most, it would be this one. Please please please make the debate space an inclusive, empathetic, and (dare I say) fun activity for all participants. Belittling, mocking, or name-calling your opposition is not an effective rhetorical tactic, and you'll often find it has the opposite effect on the round results.
College CX debater
The role of the AFF is to defend a topical advocacy against the status quo or a competitive position and the role of the NEG is to disprove the desirability of the AFF. The role of the judge is to use the debate to determine if the status quo should be changed by the plan. These are absolute.
Infinite 1NC condo is good 2NC CPs are iffy and 2NC CP text modifications are only slightly better—very AFF on perms.
99% of theory arguments are better served as a justification for perm do the cp and I’ll rarely vote on them.
What I think I know “textual and functionally competitive” means is not what you think it means so explain to me why your view of competition is best.
If the NEG wins a sizeable limits DA and a more precise/predictable interpretation it will be very hard to convince me to err AFF on reasonability.
Does reasonability mean the counterinterp is a reasonable topic standard or the we meet is “close enough”—I don’t know and it probably won’t matter, all I want is for you to tell me explicitly how to evaluate the debate by describing your world of debate and how the ballot should be allocated to achieve that world. I do think substance debates are incredibly important but am just as easily persuaded that they won’t exist without T.
Good evidence rewards good spin but I will not read additional warrants into a 2AR that explains most of a card but not every warrant. I am more lenient for the NEG on this because 2AR pivots are impossible to predict but tagline extensions will get you less than if you had asserted actual warrants without a card. If your opponents read bad ev use it against them instead of reading garbage ev.
I will always judge kick unless the NEG decides to throw the round and say their CPs are dispo.
Have fun be nice--debate is usually a fun place so try not to bully eachother :)
4 years debating in Wisconsin from 1999-2003.
Coaching @ Washington Technology Magnet School in Saint Paul since 2013.
First off - yes, you can tag team so long as it doesn't turn into a yelling fight.
Generally, I take points off for using too much speech time, not using all your time, being overly aggressive without warrant during CX, saying things that are racist, sexist, ableist, etc.
In the old days, I would have just called myself TABS (Tabula Rosa, or blank slate.) In general, I'm comfortable voting on most kinds of arguments, although I often find myself deciding many JV and V rounds on framework due to a lack of clash elsewhere in the debate.
My background is in Chemistry and Physics, so I have at best a debate level knowledge of much of the K literature. That being said, I'm very comfortable with the technical aspects of debate, so label your arguments well and explain yourself in your rebuttals and I should have a good idea about what is going on. That said, I'm sensitive to punching down, so if you have a "funny" aff be careful that it is also respectful.
I did LD and PF in high school, but I am almost certainly rusty now. I am fine with speed so long as you're clear, but add me to the email chain if you're going fast (300 wpm is definitely fast for me).
In front of me you're probably best off focusing on the line by line, though I would much appreciate it if you make weighing arguments in later speeches.
Would also like to see more evidence comparison, or at least detailed arguments on warrants. If I hear plausible evidence that says the US heg deters conflict with China and plausible evidence that US heg causes war with China, I will most likely evaluate it as neutral unless someone gives me a justification to prefer one piece of evidence over the other.
Feel free to make any arguments that you can warrant well. I prefer phil or policy debates, but kritiks or theory are fine. I think a lot of theory debates are unwarranted and blippy but if theory is the best way to engage an argument then go for it. For kritiks just make sure the arguments are understandable without having read through the literature, at least for more obscurantist authors like Deleuze. If I don't find an argument well warranted or plausible I will be much less happy to vote on it and will accept weaker answers.
***PLEASE, I BEG YOU, if nothing else, read my note about speed/clarity!!! This issue is paramount in online debate!***
"Accept that you're a pimple and try to keep a lively sense of humor about it. That way lies grace - and maybe even glory." - Tom Robbins
Hello! I'm Skye. I graduated from Concordia College where I debated on their policy team for 4 years. I am a CEDA scholar and 2019 NDT participant. In high school, I moved around a lot and have, at some point, participated in every debate format. I have a degree in English Literature and Global Studies with a minor in Women and Gender Studies.
I have experience reading, coaching, & judging both trad policy arguments and Ks.
I have been coaching going on 3 years and judging for 6. I am currently the head policy coach at Wayzata HS in Wayzata, MN. I occasionally help out the Harker School in San Jose, CA and UMN debate in Minneapolis, MN. My full time job is at the Minnesota Urban Debate League, where I am serving my second Americorps VISTA service year as the Community Debate Liaison.
I love debate and I have loved taking on an educator role in the community. I take education very seriously, but I try to approach debates with compassion and mirth, because I think everyone benefits from it. I try to be as engaged and helpful as I can while judging, and I am excited and grateful to be part of your day!
My email is firstname.lastname@example.org for email chains. If you have more questions after round, feel free to reach out :)
Top 3 Notes!
1. I FLOW ON PAPER AND HAVE POOR HEARING. I am OK with spreading, I think speed makes for much more in depth and rigorous debates, but with great speed comes great responsibility…
- please use a microphone in a headset/headphones if you have the tech, the laptop mics also pick up echoes and it makes it way harder than it needs to be for my ears
- please send out analytics if you are at all willing
- please send out marked docs at the end of your speech
- please SIGN POST & give me 1 second to move onto the next flow
- please use different intonation and sign posting to indicate you are going onto the next argument on the flow to give me the cue to finish up and move along with you so I can keep an organized flow. Not all speeches will be organized the same way, but if I know where to put things so they line up, then we are all in a better place.
- In the 2A/NC & rebuttals, spreading your way through analytics at MAX SPEED will not help you, because I won't be able to write it all down, or even really process the very dense argumentation and smart things you are saying.
If it gets to the RFD, and I feel like my flow doesn’t incapsulate the debate well because you did not accommodate me, I am very sorry for all of us, and I just hate it. I am not afraid to tell you I did not get everything or missed something. To me, that is on the debater, not the judge. There are way too many people in this activity that like to pretend they can hear every word no matter what. I am not one of those people. This is still a communication activity, and I earnestly believe the debaters should keep that in mind.
2. When it is time for the RFD, I go to framework first. If any framework arguments were extended in the rebuttals, I will reach a conclusion about who wins what and use that to dictate my decision making. I will always do this, without fail, I promise you. If there aren'y any, or the debaters were unclear, I will default to a very classic policy debate style cost-benefit analysis.
3. I default to evaluating debates from the point of tech/line by line, but arguments that were articulated with a warrant, a reason you are winning them/comparison to your opponents’ answers, and why they matter for the debate will significantly outweigh those that don’t.
"tag teaming cross ex": sure, just know that if you don't answer any CX questions OR cut your partner off, it will likely affect your speaks.
Clash debates, K aff: Fairness is probably not your best option for terminal impact, but just fine if articulated as an internal link to education. Education is very significant to me, that is why I am here. I think limits are generally good. I think the best K affs debate from the “core” or “center” of the topic, and have a clear model of debate to answer framework with. So the side that best illustrates their model of debate and its educational value while disproving the merits of their opponents’ is the side that wins to me.
Clash debates, K on the neg: As I’ve mentioned previously,framework will really guide my decision, so I encourage debaters to invest time there. The links are really important to me, especially giving an impact to that link. I think case debate is slept on by K debaters. I have recently started thinking of K strat on the negative as determined by what generates uniqueness in any given debate: the links? The alt? Framework? Both/all?
K v. K: Framework, friends, framework. Without framework we are but scurvy-ridden sailors in a sea of K goo. It may be helpful to know that I think of perms as a test of the links/competition, and not so much as an advocacy.
Ks, general:I feel that it can be easy for debaters to lose their K and by the end of the debate, I’m not sure what critical analysis actually happened in the round.No alt needed if you're worried about that, as long as there is framework/framing that supports it. I also think situating your K in/to the context of debate clarifies things for me quite a bit.
Condo/Theory: I am not opposed to voting on condo bad, but please read it as a PROCEDURAL, with an interp, violation, and standards. Anything else just becomes a mess. The same applies to any theory argument. I approach it all thinking, “What do we want debates to be like? What norms do we want to set?”
T: Will vote on T, please see theory and clash v. K aff sections for more insight, I think of these things in much the same way.
Plans/policy v K: Although I am personally ideologically predisposed to critical arguments in the ~real world~, I increasingly do not feel this is the case in debate. I also think there is an artificial polarization of k vs. Policy ideologies in debate; these things are not so incompatible as we seem to believe. Policy and K arguments are all the same under the hood to me, I see things as links, impacts, etc.; these worlds are not so polarized to me. I do think it is a good idea to clue me into what all your acronyms, initialisms, and topic jargon means, though.
policy, general:I am a simple soul here. I like refutation, LBL, evidence analysis, and collapsing down in rebuttals. You know, good debate.
LD, random arguments about wearing shoes or whatever: Please don't read ridiculous things that benefit no one educationally, that is an uphill battle for you.
Read no cards-----------x------------------------Read all the cards
Conditionality good---------------x---------------Conditionality bad
States CP good-------------------------x---------States CP bad
Federalism DA good---------------------------x--Federalism DA bad
Politics DA good for education --------------------------x---Politics DA not good for education
Fairness is a thing----------------------------x--Delgado 92
Try or die------------------------------------x-----What's the opposite of try or die
Clarityxxx--------------------------------------------Srsly who doesn't like clarity
Presumption----------x----------------------------Never votes on presumption
Resting grumpy face-------------------------x----Grumpy face is your fault
CX about impacts----------------------------x----CX about links and solvency
AT: ------------------------------------------------------x-- A2:
I truly hate being addressed as "judge" during rounds. Please call me Katie :)
I have experience debating in both high school and college (Michigan State, go green!) and have coached high schoolers. I have a BA in social policy from MSU and an MBA from UMN. I work for a beverage distributor as a data and operations analyst.
I consider myself a blank slate or "tabula rasa" judge meaning that I believe that there are no fixed rules in debate and that the rules should instead be debated in round. By this I mean that if a team says something that the opposing team objects to, it is not my place to make a call on who is on the side of truth or what is fair based on my own logic on what should be or the role of the ballot. I want to hear developed arguments telling me why something needs to be voted on and why I should prefer that interpretation over that of the opposing team.
In conjunction with that belief, I really want to hear in round story telling. Please paint me a picture of your impact scenarios and use impact comparison early and often. I love a powerful global overview at the top of the 2c. While line by line is incredibly important, try not to get so into the weeds that I can’t remember the story of the argument. In a perfect world, your impact calc heavy overviews on the 2r would be what I write on my ballot as the RFD. It’s in your best interest to not make me think too hard about the round and sort through it on my own. Don’t leave it up to chance – tell me why if you were the judge you’d objectively vote for your team. Tell what what I'm voting on and more importantly, why. "Even if you grant them X, we still win because of Y" arguments are very powerful for me.
Please engage with the warrants of the evidence being read in the round. When both teams read evidence that directly contradict each other, I need clear reasons to prefer one piece of evidence over the other. Please do not make me read the cards for myself to figure it out—that’s your job and honestly you don’t want to leave that up to chance either. It’s in your best interest to spoon feed me.
Due to my own debate background, I prefer policy-based arguments and realism frameworks, but as stated above, I will vote for anything if the work is being done. That being said, if you’re going to read something high theory or performative you need to be ready to sell me the framework. You wanna blow up the earth or advocate for extinction? Cool, but the framework needs to be there. Also, for the love of god, please be able to explain your author’s arguments in your own words without ivory tower rhetoric. Reading Deleuze in my spare time so that I can understand your K is not my job.
Unless you give me a developed reason otherwise, I’m reluctant to vote on theory arguments that can’t prove actual abuse. Theory debates are how we decide the rules so I rather not create rules unless there is a clear reason we need that rule. Conversely, I find proven in round abuse arguments to be very compelling. This is the issue for which I’m most likely to deviate from my blank slate philosophy.
Being able to read the speech doc is not an excuse not to flow. Flowing promotes better engagement with the substance of the arguments rather than just aimless coverage. I’m probably not looking at your speech doc myself since I’m old and we didn’t have those when I was a debater, so I need to be able to actually hear and understand you during your speech because I’m actually flowing every argument. I am completely fine with speed as long as clarity is prioritized. I'll shout "clear" or volume" during your speech if I can't hear/understand you well enough to flow without the speech doc in front of me. I also went to a lot of concerts in my youth without ear protection so now my hearing leaves something to be desired. Please be loud and please don’t hunch over your laptop. Hunching over your laptop compresses your diaphragm and makes you way harder to hear with makes you way harder to flow which makes you way harder to vote for.
I'd prefer that you don't tag team in CX unless it's really necessary. If you really need something to be asked then sure go for it, but this should be the exception not the rule. Tag team CX should not be plan A.
And this really doesn't need to be said but for real don't be a jerk. Debate's just a fun game we play. Don't take it too seriously.
You can call me alex, judge, or judge alex
im down with k affs you just better be good at responding to t cause i love t
I've been juding for a few years and i debated a bit before that (started judging in 2018)
Its okay to be nervous. debate especially when you just start debating can be really scary. Its okay take a deep breath. if that doesn't work talk to me we can ways pause the round for a minute or two for mental health.
Clarity comes before speed
Yes you can tag team but don't abuse it. (You can not tag team against a maverick )
Even if both teams are three headed monsters the third person who isnt in that debate CAN NOT help.
If I don't understand an argument by the end of the round I won't vote for it
If your spreading is unclear don't assume I wrote down anything you said.
If you don't make it clear your going onto a new card by saying next it is very possible I'll miss your tag.
Make it clear where you on in the speech by sign posting i will probably flow it on the wrong flow which wont make your argument stronger.
Its totally fine to be assertive but don't be mean if you get mean I'll dock speaker points.
If i see you not flowing all of the speeches i will dock speaker points.
Don't ask me questions in round if it deals with the round wait until the debate is over and im giving my rfd.
Extending isnt re-reading the card its reading the author year then explaining the warrant in your own words
I don't flow cross x. BUT if you say something that goes aginst the side you supposed to be on i will write it down in the notes
Tell me if there is anything you don't want me to comment on like if you have a stutter. I dont wanna be bring that up and possibly just annoying you