Nueva Parli Invitational

2019 — San Mateo, CA/US

Basil Abushama Paradigm

Background & Experience: 

4 years of hs parli (circuit and lay, 2x toc champ), some HS policy (circuit), some college NPDA 


General Philosophy:

I am okay with listening to any argument any you should choose to run, provided that you lay out the argument clearly and tells me why it wins you the ballot.

I view high school debate as both a competitive activity for the sake of competition and an arena for students to enrich their education by becoming better thinkers and learning more about the world. As such, I will remove myself from the round as much as humanly possible, and base my decision on my best objective evaluation of the arguments made. I flow very carefully. I will not get in your way, so do what you want argumentatively and you can expect me to evaluate it. 

My debate style is pretty diverse — I have a good footing in running and hitting normative topical positions, kritiks, theory, and anything in between. My default layering of the round is that theory comes before the kritik and the kritik comes before case, but, in round, tell me what arguments you want to come first (regardless of if it is the same as my default) as I will not do that work for you. 

Weighing is very important to me, so do a good amount of work analyzing the impacts throughout the round, and especially at the end, in the rebuttals. Tell me what impacts matter the most, why they matter the most, and why they win you the round, regardless of the position you’re banking your strategy on.  



I'm chill with spreading. I will get down your arguments on my flow and will reward higher speaker points to spreading that is exceptionally clear, easy to follow, and/or engaging to listen to. Pointers: 

(1) Slow down for taglines, texts, when you switch to a different sheet of paper or argument, and other important parts of your position as you deem fit. 

(2) Try not to slur or be repetitive. Spreading is only strategic if you can do it efficiently and clearly.

(3) Be considerate to your opponents. If they are not familiar with spreading, then try to be inclusive of them. Give them texts, answer their POIs, and try to be accommodating of their requests if they have any. It really sucks to get spread out of a round -- doesn't mean you should not spread, just means you should try to be a good sport about it. 



Go for it. I dig it. I ran kritiks quite a bit, and enjoy watching a good kritikal round. I am familiar with most of the authors that debaters commonly cite, like Marx, Nietzsche, Agamben, Foucault, Baudrillard, Wilderson, and the rest of the gang. I’m also chill with performances. If you can surprise me with a kritik that isn’t so common, I’ll be happy and give you props, but explain it well. Regardless of whether or not I know the literature, I will not do work for you filling in arguments, explanations or warrants. Pointers: 

(1) Links. Please, run links that interact very specifically with the affirmative position. A few safe generic links are okay, but don’t bank entirely on them. If you can’t come up with any specific links, that means one of two things: one, you aren’t familiar enough with your kritik, or, two, the kritik doesn’t apply well. Both are not good positions to be in. 

(2) Alt & Alt-Solvency. Explain what your alternative does and how it solves for the impacts you outlined in the rest of your K. 

(3) I think framing on the K is pretty important, so don’t skate over that part and assume I’ll just give you reasons why the K comes first. Tell me through what lens I should evaluate the round and why. Again, I will not do work for you on the K. 



I ran K-Affs a few times and have hit them plenty of times. I’m okay with them. Just make sure justify them well, as you should with any kritikal position. 



I also dig theory. I ran theory quite a bit, from your standard shells to some more out-there shells. Although I view theory as a way to check against real abuse, I’ll listen to and vote for any shell if you win the flow. Pointers: 

(1) I default to competing interpretations. 

(2) Be very clear and specific with your interpretations. I will take interpretations literally, meaning, if the other team manages to find a lawyer-esque way to meet your interpretation and its logically valid, I will not give much credence to a backtrack along the lines of “well, you know what we meant.” 

(3) Ground is the most important standard to me, as it is kind of an umbrella for all fairness-related standards. However, you should still weigh your standards if you want to win the theory debate. 

(4) I will not do work for you on the evaluation of the theory. If you want theory to come first, tell me that and tell me why. 

(5) I have a lower threshold to voting on RVI's than most judges, but still have a pretty high threshold. You'd have to do a lot of pretty compelling work on the RVI to use it to get the ballot.


Straight Up Case Debate:

I very much enjoy a well-informed and thought out, normative, topical debate. Well constructed, intrinsic advantages and disadvantages, impact framing from the get-go, and smart strategies increase your chances of getting my ballot. Brink scenarios are almost always more compelling than linear advantages/disadvantages, and try to get your arguments to go in the right direction from uniqueness to links to impacts. 

I’m okay with CPs that change implementation methods, conditionality, dispositionality, and PICs. 



Even flow debate, at its core, is a persuasive activity. Treat it as such. Don’t completely brush off presentation — a confident portrayal of an argument makes it much more appealing to a judge.  

I am okay with tag-teaming, just don’t go overboard about it. 


Other Key Points: 

(1) I like gutsy strategic moves. However, don’t just make a gutsy move for the sake of making a gutsy move, because while I will be amused and pleased, I will not vote for you if it doesn’t win you the round. 

(2) Add some personality, and be yourself. You’re real people speaking to real people — rounds that feel like that are more engaging to watch and partake in, in my opinion.

(3) If you kick something, kick it properly by extending defense. I won’t shadow kick for you if the other team calls you out on the shadow kick.

(4) Be good people. It'd be nice to see the debate community try to spread some love. 

Parul Agarwal Paradigm

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Katie Apsens Paradigm

5 rounds

I briefly competed in NPDA at the University of Washington several years ago. That means that I understand what’s going on in the debate so you don’t need to treat me like a lay judge. That being said, I have been out of debate for a while so going full spreading speed is ill-advised. I am married to the head coach of Nueva so I am improving all the time and working back toward being a proper tech judge.

Tech over truth, sorry Parliamentary Debate doesn’t give me a mechanism for resolving these issues. I won’t intervene. I am happy to judge debaters more interested in rhetoric than technical debate. But, if you don’t tell me some alternative way to evaluate the debate, I will default to tech and most importantly impacts. I flow POI answers.

On how I evaluate speaking: Borrowed from my husband’s paradigm: BE NICE AND PROFESSIONAL. Debate is not a competitive, verbal abuse match. Debaters WILL be punished on speaker points for being rude (beyond the normal flare of intense speeches) or abusive. Example: saying your opponent is wrong or is misguided is fine. Saying they are stupid is not. Laughing at opponents is bullying and unprofessional. Don’t do it.

Some specifics on how I evaluate specific categories of arguments:

Ks: I have very little experience with Ks. I wouldn’t suggest running them unless you are going to slow down and really explain them to me.

DAs: They should have links, impacts and a clear internal link story. Terminalized impacts will win more often than not. Your midterms uniqueness better be very up to date and specific.

CPs: Needs to actually compete. I don’t like delay CPs.

Theory: I have little experience here but I do understand what’s going on. I prefer education arguments to fairness arguments. Impacts need to be specific to the round. That is, I prefer when actual abuse has occurred. You don’t have a right to your politics DA.

Case: I love good case debate. I would frankly prefer all case given the choice.

Eric Ball Paradigm

I was once a policy debater so there is a reasonable chance that I will keep up on my flow. If I don't, that means there is a good chance you are talking like a policy debater yourself (or like an auctioneer, and I won't feel so bad if I miss something).

I will go where you take me. I will rely on your arguments rather than my own domain knowledge.

I do appreciate when debaters spell it out for me, not just why you should win the argument but how that argument should contribute to the decision. I look for clear links and impacts for the pivotal arguments. I understand that jargon is useful shorthand, but I will understand you better if the jargon does not become excessive.

I will tolerate kritiks but set a high bar for arguments that do not attempt to relate to the resolution, or that could be used regardless of the topic at hand (i.e. meta-arguments like that debate is pointless because we live in a flawed society). I appreciate clash delivered with a level of sportsmanship and manners.

Travis Bond Paradigm

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Gwen Byard Paradigm

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Thomas Li Paradigm

I'm Thomas, a high school debater who has debated for the past two years. My general preferences are as follows:

Speed - I prefer a medium talking speed. Be considerate of your opponents as well. Spreading does not impress me, nor will it improve your speaks. If I can't keep up, that only hurts my evaluation of your performance (and by extension, the ballot and speaks).

Argumentation - Quality over quantity. Having fewer, substantive arguments is far more useful than a flurry of shallow arguments. Presenting them cleanly in an organized fashion is just as important, preferably through a Uniqueness-Link-Internal Link-Impact structure. Somewhat relevant: don't go overboard on P.O.I's or P.O.O's unless they are absolutely necessary to maintaining your ground or the overall fairness of the debate. I do appreciate strong P.O.I's which throw off opponents = higher speaks on your behalf.

Theory - I prefer case debate over theory such as topicality, and ideally the ballot does not boil down to myself deciding on theory. I realize that topicality does come up in debate, but that should not warrant teams to be abusive and their opponents having to rely on A-priori arguments to settle a round. After all, those twenty minutes of prep for a relevant debate topic and potential for learning more about it seem lost through not being able to fairly debate. Other theory like PICs, perms, etc. I'll entertain but cannot guarantee that I'll give substantial feedback for.

Speaks - I will consider both the quality of your arguments and your speaking into your scores. I would usually assign 27 as an average score. Things like signposting and weighing are especially important and will improve your score. Preferably no tag teaming. I'll entertain it if you do, but it may affect your overall speaks.

Disclosing Ballot - I will provide a short RFD in round to talk more specifically about the arguments within the round, and will give more general improvements for speaking and such in the written RFD. When deciding the ballot, I am tabula rasa and will not intervene/connect the dots on behalf of either team. Because I am tabula rasa, it's your job as debaters to explicitly make your case as to why I should vote on your behalf.

Respect - Debate should be a fun experience for people to enhance their speaking skills and general knowledge. At the minimum, opponents should show respect and not intentionally offend others. If you are extremely disrespectful within or beyond the context of the debate, I will give an initial warning and then stop the round if you continue to act disrespectfully. I will factor any behavioral disputes into the ballot and speaks of the round. Other than that, I hope that the debate will minimally involve myself intervening with exception to the RFD, and that it will be a meaningful and enjoyable experience for everyone.

Carolyn Luedtke Paradigm

3 rounds

I debated Lincoln Douglas debate in high school (and did domestic extemp and oratory) and parliamentary debate in college. As of Fall 2018, I am new to high school parliamentary debate which is a little different from college parliamentary debate and very different from LD!

Things I like:

-- clash

-- organization (please sign post)

-- really good quality public speaking (you can talk as fast as you want as long as I can understand you)

Things I do not like:

-- running theory

-- jargon and acronyms (remember, I am new to high school parliamentary debate...if you are going to use an acronym or jargon, the first time you do it, tell me what it is)

-- being disrespectful of your opponents (you can crush them, but please do it respectfully)

Ruby Masih Paradigm

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Stephen Moff Paradigm

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Ben Shahar Paradigm

5 rounds


My prounouns are they/them.

If you have any questions before the round, message me on facebook. If the round, or this space, is inaccessible for you for any reason at any point, please let me know and I will do whatever possible to help.

To win my ballot: do good weighing, signpost, call out shady ev and missing internal links, and don’t be violent. I will try to find the easiest path to the ballot; tell me what that is.

About Me

I debated at Nueva in parli and PF and Rice in NPDA; I'm currently on a leave from college. I like to pretend I’m OK. I've gone for everything from the states CP to plan flaws to Edelman to warming good. I appreciate flexibility in my judges more than anything else, so that's what I'll try to do.

Tech vs. Truth

I will intervene on speech times, the fact that I give at most one win, and against arguments which I subjectively judge to be rhetorically violent*. Break any of these, but especially the third, and you lose with a max of 25s. Any other argument is tech over truth as much as my biases allow. There is a minimum threshold of warranting required for a claim to become an argument.

* I do not trust myself, given my positionality as a white person, to make this judgment, but I am unable to find a better solution. I therefore believe white people should be free strikes for people of color, such that people are not forced to operate in a space where some veil of objectivity in evaluating what is and is not violent is ceded to whiteness. If you are a person of color and want me to conflict you, let me know and I will do so and defend that decision to the tournament.

-------- Tech Events --------


I love good case negs. Impact turns are hella strategic especially with advantage CPs.


No risk is likely not a thing unless terminal defense is straight conceded. I generally think the link debate is more important than the uniqueness debate but can be persuaded otherwise.


I'm very much undecided on the theoretical questions here. I enjoy nuanced solvency deficit debates; a corollary is that I dislike vague CPs that shift in the back half. I also enjoy impact turned net benefits.


I may or may not be familiar with your lit; feel free to ask (most of my work has been with queer theory and structuralist stuff). I love clever techy K tricks. I like link turns/smart perms better than impact turns, but a good impact debate can be fun.

K Aff

I like neg strategies which are contextualized to the aff, no matter if it's KvK, T, or some kind of countermethodology. I dislike generic cap-T strategies, but they tend to be successful. I don’t want to vote for a counterinterp that justifies affs defending truisms, but I will if necessary.


Competing interps does not require an explicit counterinterp. Reasonability requires a brightline. I default to drop the argument. I am very down for frivolous theory. However, I am more open to RVI debates (and similar tricky checks on theory: metatheory, OCIs, etc) than most judges.


Sure. Not my favorite but I see its utility and I’m down to evaluate it. I default to epistemic modesty.


Tricks are fun when well done, but do not make me judge a bad tricks debate. I default to presuming negative even if the block goes for an advocacy, but good tricks debaters will make arguments in both directions.

-------- PF --------

**I have done 0 work on the BRI topic. Please do not assume anything. I will read evidence if I'm confused.**

Speech Obligations

Theoretically justify any changes to this and I'm cool.

Anything in final focuses should be in summaries, except that if second rebuttal doesn't cover their own case first summary doesn't have to either, including extending turns. To be clear, yes, this means first final focus can extend a turn from first rebuttal that wasn’t in summary, as long as it wasn’t answered in second rebuttal.

New offense in rebuttal (either, but especially second) is abusive unless it link or internal link turns their case (without external impacts) or relies on a link argument made in their case (as do impact turns). I will grant a lot of leniency to the other team in answering these arguments.

PF CX is fake. I don't flow it.


If you let me know that you disclose at some point before my decision, you get an extra speaker point each.

Kollin Tierling Paradigm

5 rounds

I do not flow spreading.

Shiry Wu Paradigm

This is my first high school tournament, so I am new to everything. Please don't speak fast, I will be unable to write down all you say, and what I do not write down will probably not help you. Speak with clarity and do not use any jargon; if you do, explain what those words mean. Please explain EVERYTHING, so I understand what you are saying. Please provide well-developed arguments. I would be more impressed with two or three well-developed deep arguments over several superficial arguments. Make sure to be respectful. Thanks and have fun!

Eugenia Xu Paradigm

5 rounds

*Please please please do not read any argument on suicide in front of me / provide graphic descriptions of anything mental health related without content warnings. Consequences may include me not being able to evaluate the debate or speak up about the fact that I cannot think about the debate resulting in me having no choice but to give you an auto loss & 0 speaks. Also, do not ask me why I can't engage with these arguments, I am under no obligation to answer that question even if I know you. I feel like this is a given but apparently it isn't. I think content warnings are good. If you want me to know anything message me on Facebook (just search “Eugenia Xu”) or email me at before the round and I'll do whatever I can to help.

tl;dr Read whatever you want as long as it’s not problematic. I vaguely hack for Ks & Theory but will be sad if they’re bad. plsplsplsnohandshakes

Hi I’m eug, I'm currently a junior debating in parli for the Nueva High School and I don't think I'm too terrible at it...? I have 3 years of background debating in parli & 4 weeks of VBI + lurking in the community worth of experience in LD. I also mod the facebook page Bad Debate Opinions (shameless plug), most of the self-deprecating jokes are me.

My pronouns are they/them. I have 0 tolerance for purposeful misgendering but I also don't expect everyone to be perfect.

I want to accommodate whatever arguments you want to read. I do evaluate everything on the flow so you can speak pretty in front of me but that's not going to improve your chances of winning or your speaker points. I've debated a lot of different things and I think I will have the ability to evaluate *most of* what you want to read. I do want you to slow down & repeat all advocacy texts and theory interps twice. I will be very happy if you pass me a text but I won’t ask you to unless it’s ridiculously long.

Default to K>theory>case and Metatheory>T>Theory but do what you want.

Ethics: Probably the most important part of my paradigm. I will auto drop you & give you 0 speaks if you impact turn/ deny structural violence & its impacts (i.e. arguments like racism good, ableism doesn't exist, antiqueerness has little/no impact, etc. This does not include arguments like cap good unless the argument is cap good because poverty good). Sure, debate is a game but games can have impacts outside of the gameboard and I refuse to support argumentation that pushes marginalized communities out of debate even more by giving my ballot to them. Based on my own subject position I’m way more comfortable intervening against orientalist, linguistic, antiqueer/trans, & sexist violence, as well as issues surrounding mental health. Doesn’t mean I won’t intervene against other kinds of violence, it just means that I’m a lot more hesitant to, say, as a solidly wealthy private school kid, decide what is and isn’t classist for other people because that seems pretty problematic.

T+Theory: I'm all for theory, I think it's really fun. I'm very down to evaluate frivolous theory though I’ll have a much higher threshold for warranting. I don’t think OCIs are real; if you read one, please tag it as an independent reason to drop the debater. Default drop the debater but super willing to listen to drop the argument. Please read voters and weigh between them. Default competing interpretations (which to me means an offense/defense paradigm, i.e. I’m not expecting a small school novice to tag an argument as a counterinterp but if they make the argument for an alternative model of debate I will evaluate it functionally as a counterinterp), but I’ll have a higher threshold for voting on theory introduced in novice rounds and the 2AC. I think it makes sense to be more truth>tech as the debate progresses given that there are fewer and fewer speeches to respond to previous issues and also because of the absolute shitshow that was my partnership's strat at NPDI 2018 (basically 2AC theory every round & winning on golden turns even if we were behind everywhere else in the debate, it’s super strategic but please don’t do it for the sake of not breaking debate). I am definitely biased against RVIs (especially very blippy ones), but I’m willing to vote on them. I really like theory with K esque impacts because it's my two favorite things in debate colliding.

I’m pretty much down for whatever as far as theory goes (in terms of the shells you read or in terms of the dubiously theoretically legitimate arguments you make), but there are a few lines that can be pretty iffy for me: 1) bad (aka 90% of) spec shells, I will have a high threshold for warranting & also be very sad to vote on them; 2) ridiculously gerrymandered interps, once again, high threshold for warranting I’ll be sad; 3) frivolous theory in a round where there are serious arguments about identity being made, I WILL intervene against them.

Case: Despite what my debate career & the rest of my paradigm indicate, I'm totally down to evaluate case, but if the resolution is a bill, about a specific person, or is generally a bit obscure, do not expect me to know about it & please at least have a brief explanation. Down to vote for generics though I’d enjoy the debate more if the generics were less generic and more specific. Terminalize ur impacts thanks I won’t vote on just the word “econ”, I default death, dehum & suffering bad.

Framework / Impact framing: Do what you want, I'm familiar with utilitarianism & structural violence. I'm frankly bad at phil debate but I think I vaguely know how to evaluate it, chill with y’all reading consequentialism / truth testing as long as y’all explain things. I default to epistemic modesty, meaning I evaluate the strength of the impact x how much they’re winning their framework. Please do some meta weighing, it’s not done nearly enough.

Ks: VERY down to evaluate them on the aff & neg. Just because I'm kind of a K hack doesn't mean you should definitely read a K in front of me; it just means that I will be really happy to listen to a good one and really sad to listen to a bad one. I'm down to listen to all sorts of K strats from performance to high theory. However, I do want the K to at least discuss the resolution in some way (as in don't have policy bad as your only reason to reject the res) but I’m not going to intervene based on it. Check with everyone before the round starts to make sure whatever you’re reading isn't triggering for anyone.

I’m very comfy with cap & dis/ableism, am confident evaluating qu/kweer theory, model minority, and orientalism based on my own lived experience, but other than that I have pretty general background on most common literature bases. Read creative alts/performances in front of me, I love them! I'm down to listen to anything, but keep in mind I will likely be very confused if you go full speed and refuse to explain anything when you're reading Baudrillard or something else that isn’t very straightforward.

When it comes to T-USfg, I’m not gonna hack against it but I might not be the most hyped to vote on it particularly against an identity politics aff.

Being an ally is different from speaking for others. I'm not going to prevent you from reading a race K if you don't look that race but do not appropriate another identity for the ballot, i.e. if you are nonblack don’t read antiblackness in a way that claims black identity for yourself. Obviously unverifiable for most identities but pls just don’t be part of the problem.

I have 0 tolerance for kids spreading other people out with Ks and making it impossible for them to interact with their arguments. I'm probably gonna yeet your speaks pretty badly. This is the reason why K debate gets a bad rep in parli in the first place.

Speed is fine as long as both teams are comfortable with it, I'll clear you if I can't understand you but I won't penalize you for it because it's kind of bs for me to assume you know my limit on any given day. I will, however, penalize you if you refuse to accommodate your opponents when they can't understand you. I will also be skeptical if you continuously clear your opponents but speak faster than the speed you've slowed them to.

Speaks are arbitrary and I kind of don't like them so I will mostly use them to reward things I think are really cool / really gutsy strategies and penalize problematic things in the debate space. I'd say my average would be 28. If you don't do something really bad you're not going to get below a 27. I won’t intervene against 30 speaks though I’ll squint really hard and judgementally at you.

30 speaks to anyone who attempts some strat that could belong on BDO and wins on it (as long as it isn’t problematic) I’ll award you for being a meme icon.

30 speaks to really dope / gutsy and well executed strats in general.

30 speaks to any dope performances

I protect against new arguments in the rebuttals but I'm not gonna get mad at points of order. If you POO more than twice and I think your POOs are correct I'll probably be a little more attentive to new arguments.

Fact/value are not really my cup of tea in parli. Though I think value debate can be done well I don't really believe that fact debates can, though feel free to prove me wrong (it will take a lot). 100% totally down with framing fact/value as policy / fact as value & also totally down with Ks. Kind of very skeptical of trichot as drop the debater (or the idea that there’s a trichotomy of resolutions in general, tbh) & I'll be very sad if I have to vote on it. I think "more harm than good" = value but debate those resolutions how you want, I'm not going to intervene. In value debates, pls justify your v/vc and tell me what it means for me to evaluate arguments under your framework (i.e. theory of good and theory of right, tell me what I value and how I value it). Again, epistemic modesty.

Other things:

I love you but please PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE I don't do handshakes (like seriously, fist bumps r dope)

After having a lovely conversation about this, I've decided that I will treat all final answers to POIs as binding statements to avoid a floofton of chaos that could ensue if that were not true. (s/o to Alan Fishman)

I'm probably going to disclose my decision to you & give feedback. If it takes me forever, I’ll probably tell you that it’ll be in your rfd / feedback section but if it isn’t there feel free to message / email me. Feel free to discuss my decision with me if you think I'm missing something but don't try to argue with me / push me to change my decision.

Debate however you're comfortable! I have 0 business policing your body.

I kind of really don't forking care if you swear as long as it's not done in a derogatory way.

If I am in any way making the round uncomfortable (i.e. if I ask an uncomfortable question, if I misgender you, use a term that I reclaim for my own identity that oppresses you in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, allowing a team to mansplain at you, say something problematic, etc.) please do tell me if you feel safe doing so & we can discuss what I can do to make you feel more comfortable. This will not impact my decision or the speaker points I give you.

Remember that at the end of the day, we all lose rounds we shouldn’t have and whether you win or lose a round in front of me is not at all indicative of your value as a person or as a debater!

If you're confused about anything message me! 0 judgment if you do & 0 judgment if you don't message me because talking to people is hard.

Li Zhao Paradigm

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