Keeling Invitational Fall

2019 — Hayward, CA/US

Teddy Albiniak Paradigm

3 rounds

Some tidbits to consider, no particular order:

I try to make decisions based on criteria established by debaters. If none are offered, I will rely on my knowledge of convention, style, and execution to guide me. What that means - I am equally likely to vote for a good thought experiment or critical intervention, as I am a traditional policy proposal. That being said, I have a higher threshold for what counts. Asserted risk calculus is as unappealing as unapplied critical jargon.

Mediocre debaters copy others. Good debaters advance arguments. Great debaters persuade.

Don’t assume I know what you are talking about

I prefer organization and development of arguments as the debate proceeds. That means: 
Details matter. Warrants matter. Cross-ex matters. History matters. 

Evidence matters when a claim is contested. "We have a card" is not a warrant for an argument. How one chooses to highlight evidence should be of relevance to you, but it is especially relevant to me.

Argument "type" is not extremely relevant to me - select the arguments that you are prepared for rather than those that you think I agree with. I obviously have preferences but am interested in seeing how you make sense of the activity, not with advancing my agenda.

I think the activity is at its best when rounds are serious and complex investigations of policy, philosophy, and politics based in literatures and discussions made relevant by and to the resolution. 

That means I am less likely to care about miniscule theory debates or certain kinds of performances until/unless their relevance is clearly explained and impacted. Then, it's awesome.

I like:

case debates

disadvantage impacts that focus on early internal link claims and less on terminal impacts

affirmatives that affirm things

consistent but tricky negative strategies

counter plans with solvency advocates and real net benefits


some relation to reality, even if contested


serious theoretical objections, including topicality

Everyone is always learning - including me and you.

Jason Ames Paradigm

4 rounds

I was the DOF for my school for over a decade and our team was the first Community College in Northern California to do LD. There's a good chance I either judged or competed against your coach at some point.

Ultimately I think the round is for the students to decide in round. It is my role to adjudicate the round in front of me with limited bias. This also means that it is up to you to prove to me your point of view/arguments are how I should vote. You think T is a voter? Tell me why. You think there needs to be proven abuse on T? Tell me why. Think K's don't need an alt? Tell me why, etc. Best argument wins. If you have specific questions, feel free to ask them pre-round. I'll probably say "you tell me" to your question, but give it a shot anyway (I really mean this; I promise its not sarcasm).

Speed: I can handle it but I don't prefer it. I am "rusty" (I only judge 1 - 2 tournaments a year) so if you are going to go fast make sure you hit your tags and explain things to me, especially jargon since I probably haven't heard many rounds on the resolution. I prefer clarity and impact weighing in rebuttals versus more line by line refutation.

Be cool to each other. We're all just trying to do our best. Have fun.

Andrea Brown Paradigm

4 rounds

1/22 Updates at the bottom for Open/JV

Parli philosophy

The shortest description of my philosophy is: It’s your time; you do what you want.

Partner talk- see above although I only flow what the designated speaker says.

T, theory, C/P, DA, framework, etc.- See above.

I enjoy well run kritiks and critical affs and most likely will boost your speaker points if you go that route. I find it a little too easy to vote for the K perm, I would suggest you put your preempts in LOC. (This does not apply to counterplans)

I will also give you give you better speaker points if you pleasantly surprise me with an argument. You can win with your international relations DA but it’s unlikely to impress me.

Unless you tell me otherwise, all decisions will be based on in-round discourse with preference going to the better warrants and impacts and offense over defense. (But you can still win with only defensive arguments)

I generally do not protect against new arguments but very big, completely new arguments in the PMR might be protected against. This line is mainly so I don't end up stuck making annoying decisions in novice or JV rounds, if in doubt or in open, call the PoO.

I have been working on pushing my speaker point range up. I currently generally give points in the 27-28 range I am fine with speed. I am also open to speed bad arguments.

I need detailed roadmaps before each speech begins (except the PMC).

Updates 1/22/2020 for Open/JV only

My beliefs about presumption don't match the community norms. I have never voted on presumption but I'm willing to change that. If you want me to vote for you on presumption, please provide a warrant for why presumption is good and a warrant for why presumption flows in your direction.

Bill Brown Paradigm

4 rounds

Treat me like a Lay-Judge. I am a practical, real-world thinker. I’m NOT a debate coach. I’m the judge you need to adapt to by dumbing down your arguments.

If you have questions, Ask!

General guidelines:

1) Have fun. It’s OK to chat and BS before the round starts. Don’t let winning go to your head or losing get you down. Everybody is cannon fodder when they start out. Learn from the successes and mistakes of yourself and others.

2) Speak clearly. I am relatively new to judging, so please do not spread. If you do, I will be unable to understand/flow your arguments…

2a) Debate WILL be accessible. If you are deliberately trying to spread-out (Gish gallop)your opponent, don't clearly articulate your Kritikal arguments, use a Kritik a tool of exclusion, or show reckless disregard towards your fellow debaters: I WILL VOTE AGAINST YOU (For that round)

3) Tell me what you are doing: Please give me a roadmap so I can keep my flow somewhat organized.

4) Clearly articulate what you are telling me. “Advantage #1 is…” etc.

5) Carry your arguments through the flow.

6) If you require a special dispensation, please let me know before the round starts.

7) Arrive on-time. It is your responsibility to know where your next round is located. I usually allow a one-minute grace period. (Depending on the directions from the tournament director) Otherwise, if you are late, you will automatically lose the round. I will however, encourage you to debate for speaker points. If both teams are late, it will be a double fault loss for both teams, but you can still debate for speaker points.

8) Advanced Arguments. Although I have OCCASIONALLY ruled in favor of Kritiks, I greatly prefer the debate to be about the resolution. HOWEVER: 1) A Kritik should not be used for exclusion. 2) If you are going to use advanced arguments, such as a Kritik or a Critical Affirmative, make sure you clearly tell me what you are doing and try to keep it simple. (If you spread some memorized speech you’ve been using all season, I am going to be annoyed) If the topic is education and you start talking about nuclear proliferation, it's likely going to hurt you. If you start talking about Niche, I am likely to be confused. (Yes, I know it's spelled wrong... :) )


Kaine Cherry Paradigm

4 rounds


Feel free to debate how ever you want to, just make it interesting although i specialized with critical scholarship I am familiar with the fundamentals of debate across styles . Don’t call me judge,

Speaking: General Clarity over speed paradigm that most people have, It's a good determinate of speaker points and important for effective communication.When you make an argument clearly I'm more likely to follow its development and depending on the how the round goes works well for you. Versus If i miss and important argument and it costs you the round and then you ask "what about x argument " then people are sad.

Style: Is also very important and i think that can become lost in debate rounds, although some people shoot arguments as if they are a machine they still have personalities that I believe should be shown in a debate round. If you are funny, show it, if you can "make asshole work" more power to you, if you are a geek I'll probably get your references, and so on. Style is not mandatory and should come naturally, but if shown will definitely improve your speaker points.

Cross-X: Can be a very useful tool and can be both a fun and entertaining experience for me as a judge and a place for people to express some aspects of "style". Cross-X belongs to the person asking questions, so if it seems like someone isn't asking a question let them ramble it really isn't your concern. Of course there is a threshold that will become really clear, in that i'll probably stop paying attention and start finding something else interesting to pay attention to.

Evidence: Pieces of evidence are like a bullets to a gun. They can be devastating only when aimed properly, I think evidence is a tool to support your arguments and the way you articulate them. So if you extend evidence with little to no explanation to how it functions you are shooting blanks that can probably be easily refuted, evidence comparison is also really important in this regard as it allows you to control the framing of the debate which leads us into. . .

Macro-level issues and Framing: I think these are very important in both debate as they ultimately determine how i look at the flow(s) and situate who is controlling the direction of the debate. So if someone has an overview that contains an impact calculus,framework, "politics" or frontloads an argument on the flow and it doesn't get answered either directly or somewhere else on the flow then it becomes damming to the other team. This is even more essential in the last two speeches that ultimately determine how i should look at the round. Good framing also should happen on the line-by line as well and will also help me write the ballot.

Theory: I don't have a stance on theory as a stand alone argument. It's probably something that should be argued in a CLEAR and COHERENT manner, which means you probably shouldn't speed through your condo bad and agent cp blocks as if you are reading cards, I'll vote on dropped theory arguments as long as there is a clear impact to it when extended. Otherwise it should be developed throughout the debate. General question that should be resolved in theory debate for me is "What does it mean?" i.e If you say best policy option, what does that mean in terms of what a policy option is and how does it work in terms of debate.

Specific Stuff

Topicality: Its very situational depending on the violation and how the definitions are played out. I think a lot of T interpretations can be contrived especially if they are not grounded in codified law or precedent. Interpretations that come from legal academics serve to help lawyers in the event in which they feel they must argue a certain interpretation in front of a particular judge and may not nesscarly good for debate(although a certain level of spin and framing could connivence me otherwise). Topicality comes down to clash and ground, and is normally resolved by several questions for me; "Is there clash in round?" "What ground does BOTH sides have?" and "How does ground function to create educational debates?" I tend to have a very high threshold for fairness. Just because a K Aff makes a no link argument to you politics disad doesn't mean that its unfair, negative ground isn't something that is so clearly drawn out. I think there are better arguments that can be made in those situations. That being said I am very sympathetic to aft weighing their case against topicality and see k's of topicality as substantial arguments on the flow.

Just saying you are reasonability topical isn't an argument and makes their competing interpretation clams all the more legitimate. Like all things you have to make a warrant to why you are reasonably topical, may it be that you are germane to the resolution or that you still allow for alternative ways for the neg to engage the aft.

Counter Plans, PICs, and DA's: Not really a generic counterplan person, I think counterplans when researched properly and specific to the aff with a good net-benifit can become a good interesting debate that I would love to see. I don't really like silly PICs and think people can make very convincing, smart arguments about how stupid they are,but I'll still vote for them. It's question of how the counterplan competes with the aff and makes better room for theory arguments on the aff. I really don't like the politics DA and generally think the link arguments are contrived,strong attacks on the link story of the DA are very convincing and will probably help you on the CP debate.

"Perfomance": **** Just do your thing

K's: I would love seeing a good critique debate more than seeing a bad one that does surface level work. A good K debate includes specific links to the aff that go beyond " you do state action dates bad judge" or "you sed observation= ablest discourse" as it allows affs to use simple questions to make you links seem stupid and their framing arguments stronger. A strong defense of the alternative, and realistic impacts that are explained and benefit the neg. I really like K's that deal with politics and how we formulate political action and agency in relation to institutions or the State, a good framing of the alternative politics and how that politics can function through the debate round and the ballot is very exciting to me, especially with the recent events happening over in Tunisa and Egypt. Affirmatives should engage in a substantive discussion of the alternative and pin the negative down on how the alternative functions in the round. Smart questions and simplification of the alt/ K will probally allow to be more persuasive and stop the k from becoming the blob of shit it normally becomes.

Have fun!


Steven Farias Paradigm

4 rounds


Updates: My threshold to vote on theory has decreased. Proven abuse is not a necessity on T, though it is preferred. Also, my thoughts on role of the ballot has changed under my section for K's.

TLDR Version: I am okay with whatever you choose to read in the debate, I care more about your justifications and what you as the debaters decide in round; however, theory I generally have a high threshold for voting on except CONDO Bad, in which case the threshold is lower. CPs/Alts are generally good ideas because I believe affirmatives usually solve harms in the world and permutations are not advocacies. Finally, pet peeve but I rule on points of order when I can. I generally think it is educational and important for the LOR/PMR strategy to know if I think an argument is new or not. I protect the block as well, but if you call a point of order I will always have an answer (not well taken/well taken/under consideration) so please do not just call it and then agree its automatically under consideration.

Section 1: General Information-

While I thoroughly enjoy in-depth critical and/or hegemony debates, ultimately, the arguments you want to make are the arguments I expect you to defend and WEIGH. I often find myself less compelled by nuclear war these days when the topic is about education, a singular SCOTUS decision, immigration, etc. BE RESOURCEFUL WITH YOUR IMPACTS- ethnic conflict, mass exodus, refugee camps, poverty, and many more things could all occur as a result of/in a world without the plan. I think debaters would be much better served trying to win my ballot with topically intuitive impact scenarios rather than racing to nuclear war, ESPECIALLY IF PROBABILITY MEANS ANYTHING BESIDES A DROPPED, BLIPPED INTERNAL LINK—which I think it does.

I do my best to keep up with the debate and flow every argument. However, I also will not stress if your 5 uniqueness blips don’t ALL get on my flow. I am unafraid to miss them and just say “I didn’t get that”. So please do your best to use words like “because” followed by a strong logical basis for your claim and I will do my best to follow every argument. Also, if you stress your tag I will be able to follow your warrants more too.

Section 2: Specific Arguments

“The K”- I do not mind critical affirmatives but be prepared to defend topicality with more than just generic links back to the K. Moreover, I feel that this can even be avoided if the affirmative team simply frames the critical arguments they are going to make while still offering, at the very least, the resolution as a policy text for the opposition. On the negatiave, I think that K’s without alternatives are just non-unique disads. I think that reject and embrace are not alternatives in and of themselves, I must reject or embrace something and then you must explain how that solves. NEW: In terms of ballot claims, I do not believe the ballot has any role other than to determine a winner and a loser. I would rather be provied a role that I should perform as the adjudicator and a method for performing that role. This should also jive with your framework arguments. Whoever wins a discussion of my role in the debate and how should perform that role will be ahead on Framework. For performance based arguments, please explain to me how to evaluate the performance and how I should vote and what voting for it means or I am likely to intervene in a way you are unhappy with. Also, please do not make myself or your competitors uncomfortable. If they ask you to stop your position because it emotionally disturbs them, please listen. I am not unabashed to vote against you if you do not. I believe you should be able to run your argument, but not at the expense of others’ engagement with the activity. I will consider your narrative or performance actually read even if you stop or at the least shorten and synthesize it. Finally, I also consider all speech acts as performative so please justify this SPECIFIC performance.

Topicality/Theory- I believe T is about definitions and not interpretations, but not everybody feels the same way. This means that all topicality is competeing definitions and a question of abuse in my book. Not either or. As a result, while I have a hard time voting against an aff who was not abusive, if the negative has a better definition that would operate better in terms of ground or limits, then I will vote on T. To win, I also think you must either pick theory OR the case debate. If you go for both your topicality and your K/DA/CP I will probably not vote on either. Caveat- I think that negative teams should remember that a contextual definition IS A DEFINITION and I consider multiple, contradictory definitions from an affirmative abusive (so make Aff doesn’t meet its own interp arguments).

In terms of other theory, I evaluate theory based on interpretations and I think more specific and precise interpretations are better. Contextualized interpretations to parli are best. I also think theory is generally just a good strategic idea. However, I will only do what you tell me to do: i.e.- reject the argument v. reject the team. I also do not vote for theory immediately even if your position (read: multiple conditional advocacies, a conditional advocacy, usage of the f-word) is a position I generally agree with. You will have to go for the argument, answer the other teams responses, and outweigh their theoretical justifications by prioritizing the arguments. Yes, I have a lower threshold on conditionality than most other judges, but I do not reject you just because you are conditional. The other team must do the things above to win my ballot on theory.

Counterplans- CP’s are the best strategy, IMHO, for any neg team (or at least some alternative advocacy). It is the best way to force an affirmative to defend their case. PICs, Consult, Conditions, etc. whatever you want to run I am okay with. I do not think that “We Bite Less” is a compelling argument, just do not link to your own disad. In terms of perms, if you do not in the end prove that the Perm is preferential to the plan or cp, then I will simply view it as an argument not used. This means if you go for the perm in the PMR, it must be as a reason the CP should be rejected as an offensive voting position in the context of a disad that does not link to the CP. Finally, CP perms are not advocacies- it is merely to demonstrate the ability for both plans to happen at the same time, and then the government team should offer reasons the perm would resolve the disads or be better than the CP uniquely. K perms can be advocacies, particularly if the Alt. is a floating PIC, but it needs to be explained, with a text, how the permutation solves the residual links.

Evaluating rounds- I evaluate rounds as a PMR. That means to me that I first look to see if the affirmative has lost a position that should lose them the round (T’s and Specs). Then I look for counter advocacies and weigh competing advocacies (K’s and Alts or CP’s and Disads). Finally, I look to see if the affirmative has won their case and if the impacts of the case outweigh the off case. If you are really asking how I weigh after the explanation in the general information, then you more than likely have a specific impact calculus you want to know how I would consider. Feel free to ask me direct questions before the round or at any other time during the tournament. I do not mind clarifying. Also, if you want to email me, feel free ( If you have any questions about this or anything I did not mention, feel free to ask me any time. Thanks.


Section 1 – General Information

Experience: Rounds this year: >50 between LD and Parli. 8 years competitive experience (4 years high school, 4 years collegiate NPDA/NPTE and 2 years LD) 9 years coaching experience (2 Grad years NPDA/NPTE and LD at Pacific and 3 years NPDA/NPTE at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, 4 years A/DOF years NPDA/NPTE and LD at Pacific)

General Info: I am okay with whatever you choose to read in the debate because I care more about your justifications and what you as the debaters decide in round; however, theory I generally have a high threshold for voting on except CONDO Bad, in which case the threshold is lower. CPs/Alts are generally good ideas because I believe affirmatives usually solve harms in the world and permutations are not advocacies. While I thoroughly enjoy in-depth critical and/or hegemony debates, ultimately, the arguments you want to make are the arguments I expect you to defend and WEIGH. I often find myself less compelled by nuclear war and would appreciate if you were more resourceful with impacts on your advantage/disad. I think probability means more than just a blipped or conceded link. The link arguments must be compared with the arguments of your opponents.

Section 2 – Specific Inquiries

1. How do you adjudicate speed? What do you feel your responsibilities are regarding speed?

I can handle top speed and am not frustrated by debaters who choose to speak at a conversational rate. With that said, I believe the issue of speed is a rules based issue open for debate like any other rule of the event. If you cannot handle a debater’s lack of clarity you will say “clear” (I will if I have to) and if you cannot handle a debater’s excessive speed, I expect you to say “speed.” In general, I will wait for you to step in and say something before I do. Finally, I believe the rules are draconian and ridiculously panoptic, as you are supposedly allowed to “report” me to the tournament. If you want me to protect you, you should make that known through a position or rules violation debated effectively.

2. Are there any arguments you would prefer not to hear or any arguments that you don’t find yourself voting for very often?

I will not tolerate homophobia, racism, sexism, transphobia, disablism, or any other form of social injustice. This means that arguments that blatantly legitimize offensive policies and positions should be avoided. I do not anticipate this being an issue and rarely (meaning only twice ever) has this been a direct problem for me as a judge. Still, I will do my best to ensure the round is as accessible as possible for every competitor. Please do the same. Anything else is up to you. I will vote on anything I simply expect it to be compared to the alternative world/framing of the aff or neg.

3. General Approach to Evaluating Rounds:

Evaluating rounds- I evaluate rounds sequentially against the Affirmative. This means I first look to see if the affirmative has lost a position that should lose them the round (T’s and Specs). Then I look for counter advocacies and weigh competing advocacies (K’s and Alts or CP’s and Disads). Finally, I look to see if the affirmative has won their case and if the impacts of the case outweigh the off case. I do not assume I am a policy maker. Instead I will believe myself to be an intellectual who votes for the best worldview that is most likely achieveable at the end of the debate.

4. Whether or not you believe topicality should be a voting issue

Yes, it is because the rules say so. I will listen to reasons i should ignore the rules, but I think T and generally all therory arguments are voting issues.

5. Does the negative have to demonstrate ground loss in order for you to vote negative on topicality?

Generally yes, but I will vote on reasons the negative has a better definition for the resolution. To win that debate there should be a comparison of the debate being had and the debate that the competitors could be having.

6. Do you have a close understanding of NFA rules/Have you read the NFA rules in the last 6 months


7. How strictly you as a judge enforce NFA LD rules?

I only enforce them if a position is won that says I should enforce them. I will not arbitrarily enforce a rule without it being made an issue.

8. Does the negative need to win a disadvantage in order for you to vote negative?

No. I am more likely to vote if the negative wins offense. But terminal case defense that goes conceded or is more explanatory to the aff will win my ballot too.

9. What is your policy on dropped arguments?

You should do your best not to drop arguments. If you do, I will weigh them the way you tell me too. So if it is a conceded blipped response with no warrant, I do not think that is an answer but instead a comparison of the quality of the argument. Also, new warrants after a blip I believe can and should be responded to.

10. Are you familiar with Kritiks (or critiques) and do you see them as a valid negative strategy in NFA-LD?

My background is in critical theory, so yes and yes they are valid negative strats.

Feel free to ask me direct questions before the round or at any other time during the tournament. I do not mind clarifying. Also, if you want to email me, feel free ( If you have any questions about this or anything I did not mention, feel free to ask me any time. Thanks!

Tim Heisler Paradigm

4 rounds

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Jessica Jung Paradigm

4 rounds


My name is Jessica Jung. I won NPDA in 2018-2019 with my partner, Lila Lavender as a hybrid team (the first all transwomen national champion team yay!!) I also did NPDA Parli for four years in college for UC Berkeley where I competed on and off. I was mostly a kritikal debater personally but I dabbled in case and theory every so often. I generally believe that debate is a game and should be treated like one. This means that I am content agnostic (for the most part and with a few exceptions such as instances of violence in the round) and that I see debate from a more technical standpoint. Technical debate was what I learned at Cal and is what I am most familiar with and thus, that tends to affect my judging. That being said, one of my goals in debate when I competed was to turn debate into a spectacle (whether that was good or not has yet to be seen) but as such, I am very open to new arguments, new types of debate and pushing the envelope for what NPDA parli is or could be. That being said, anything that is new takes some getting used to so don't be surprised if I find these cool new novel arguments difficult to evaluate.

A few personal requests:

1. Please read trigger warnings or content warnings before discussing any topics related to sexual violence. Please do so before the round and not at the top of the PMC so that if I or anyone else in the room needs to take a second, or abstain from the debate, there is a moment to exercise some amount of personal privilege.

2. Do not misgender your opponents, intentional or otherwise. I would generally recommend defaulting to "they" if you do not know someone's pronouns and to use "my opponents" in the round as I find using people's first names in the round to be kind of uncomfortable.

3. I would prefer you do not give me a "shout out" or refer to my personal history during your speech or during debates. Not sure exactly how to phrase it but I find it uncomfortable for debaters to refer to me via first name or reference my debate history in the round. Before or after is fine, we can make small talk etc but please just don't be weird about it during the round.

4. Please debate however makes you the most comfortable, I have zero preferences whether you sit or stand, what you wear etc as long as you're respectful of your opponents and your partner.

TL;DR fine with theory, K’s, case, explain your arguments with warrants and explicit implications, will default to tech evaluation on the flow, don’t be bad to your opponents

Evaluative Framework:

- I'm comfortable with case, theory, K's etc. I'm fairly content agnostic in this regard.

- I'm fairly comfortable with speed but if I call clear or slow, please heed these requests, otherwise I will just miss things on the flow because I can't write fast enough.

- I evaluate the debate based on the flow, which generally means I will vote in whatever way minimizes my intervention in the round. I think that some amount of judge intervention is inevitable but I will still aim to make decisions with the least amount of intervention possible.

- I stole this from Trevor Greenan but we got a similar debate education so this should be totally justifiable: I vote in this order:
1. conceded arguments
2. arguments with warrants and substantive analysis
3. arguments with in-round weighing/framing
4. arguments with implicit clash/framing
5. arguments I am more familiar with

- In round articulation of arguments is very important. Even if conceded arguments have certain potential implications for the round, unless those implications are made explicit or within the original reading of the argument, I am unwilling to grant you those implications as that feels interventionist. This generally means you should be more explicit than not. This applies to: concessions, extensions, impacts, weighing etc.

- I generally don't like voting on blippy arguments or underdeveloped arguments especially if these arguments are just claims with no warrants or impacts. I have a high threshold for these types of arguments and am also willing to grant late responses if the original argument or its explanation was unclear or massively underdeveloped.

- I do not grant shadow extensions, or at the very least, treat them as new arguments. This means that arguments not extended by the MG cannot be leveraged in the PMR, arguments not extended by the MO cannot be leveraged in the LOR etc. While grouped/blanket extensions are fine, for example if an entire advantage/DA is dropped or extending a section of the flow like all the impacts, but for the most part if you want anything specific from these extensions you should do them in the MG/MO. This also includes new cross applications from extended arguments onto other sheets/layers of the debate as these cross-apps should have been done by the MG/MO.

- I protect against new arguments but you should call Point of Orders just in case as I am not perfect and can/may miss things.

- I have a high threshold for voting on presumption and presumption is a portion of debate I may not be the most comfortable on. I'm still willing to evaluate the layer, just don't assume that I'm following your presumption collapse 100%.

- I don't mind conditionality. That being said, my preference is towards less wide, more tall/deep debates but whatever floats your boat.

Argument Specifics:


- have a stable and clear interp text
- read theory arguments with explicit voters
- if not explicitly articulated, I will default to drop the argument
- I default to competing interpretations
- read brightlines for reasonability
- generally friv T is fine by me but I'll be honest and say I don't find friv theory debates to be all that interesting
- I might have a lower threshold for voting on RVI's than other judges on the circuit but I am still generally unwilling to pull the trigger on them unless they're substantively developed, even if its conceded (see the point about implications/explanations above)
- if standards are not articulated in substantively different ways or are not given different implications (like terminalizing out to fairness or education) then I am unwilling to auto-vote on a conceded standard if the other similar standards have answers to them or if the other team has some amount of mitigation.


- sequencing arguments such as prior questions or root cause claims need to be warranted and substantively explained as well as interacted with the other portions of the debate
- clear links please, not links of omission, try and make them specific to the 1ac
- I evaluate links via strength of link. comparative work on the links done by the debaters would make me really happy! be sure to weigh relinks and links against each other
- rejecting the resolution in front of me is fine as long as you defend and justify your choice
- I believe that I can follow along with most K arguments you read in front of me but don't assume I'm intimately familiar with the literature
- do not assume that because I did mostly kritikal debate in college that I am exclusively a K hack, if anything I am likely to expect a lot from K debates and may have higher evaluative thresholds for K's because that's what I am most familiar with. that being said, I love kritiks so feel free to run them in front of me.
- I evaluate permutations as a test of competition and not advocacies unless told otherwise. I also prefer to have explicit perm texts and I'm talking like "permutation: do both" as a fine example of an explicit text. Just saying the plan and the alt are not mutually exclusive does not count as a perm argument.
- I'll evaluate/vote on severance permutations if there is substantive explanation and if there's no argument why severance is bad/unfair.


- not sure if there's really such a thing as terminal defense but am still willing to buy these arguments
- prefer less generic case arguments than not (who doesn't really) but am still fine with your generic advantages and DAs.
- more specific and warranted the better
- CPs need to stable texts
- I evaluate permutations as a test of competition and not advocacies unless told otherwise. I also prefer to have explicit perm texts and I'm talking like "permutation: do both" as a fine example of an explicit text. Just saying the plan and the CP are not mutually exclusive does not count as a perm argument.
- PICs/cheater CP's are fine with me but so is PICs bad and CP theory

Sasan Kasravi Paradigm

4 rounds

TL;DR: I won't punish you for not debating the way I like, but I can't "hang". Speed and Ks not recommended, but I won't vote you down unless your opponent gives me a decent reason to. Give me direct and clear reasons to vote for you. Have fun in the round.

I'm a community college Parliamentary Debate coach.

I protect the flow in rebuttals based on what I have on my flow. Feel free to call points of order if you'd really like to, though.

I do my best to vote the way the debaters tell me to and to be tabula rasa. With that having been said, I think everyone has biases and I want to tell you mine. I won't ignore any of your arguments out of not liking them, but my biases could lower the threshold for refutation on an argument I dislike.

What I like to see most in debates is good clash. To me, good clash means link refutations and impact comparisons.

I'm comfortable with theory and you can run whatever procedural you'd like. I prefer to vote on articulated abuse rather than potential abuse. While I'm happy to vote on procedurals if it's called for, I've never walked out of a round thinking, "Wow! What a great T!"

I don't like K's. I've voted on them before, I'll probably end up having to vote for a K again, but I'm not happy about it. Specifically, I have a hard time buying solvency on the alternatives of most K's I've heard.

I prefer that you don't spread, but I can keep up with decent speed. I'll tell you to slow if I need you to slow down.

Please be inclusive of your opponents and (if there are other judges in this round) the other judges on the panel.

It's important to me that this activity:

a) be a useful experience for competitors' lives outside of forensics

b) be enjoyable enough to be worth giving up weekends instead of sleeping in and watching cartoons.

Lastly, if I make jokes please pretend to think I'm funny. I don't have much else going for me.

Benjamin Krueger Paradigm

3 rounds

Judging Philosophy (last updated February 2020)

I competed in NPDA and IEs in the early 2000s at Northern Arizona University. After many years away from the forensics community, I returned to active judging in 2016.

I am flow-centric judge and will do my best to evaluate the round with as little intervention as possible. That having been said, I believe that being completely tabula rasa is a utopian ideal and that judging inevitably involves some degree of intervention. Debaters can minimize the extent of my intervention by providing a strong framework and clearly-structured arguments that are well-supported with warrants. Rebuttal speeches should crystallize what happened in the round and provide clear voting issues.

General Issues/Stylistic Things

1) I am not a fan of speed in Parli and strongly prefer that you speak at a conversational rate. Spreading increases the likelihood that I’ll miss arguments on the flow and make a decision that you may not like.

2) For NFA L-D, I recognize that some speed is necessary given the nature of carded debate. Please slow down for your taglines and keep spreading to no more than about 150% of your normal speaking rate. If I can't understand you, I'll say "speed" or "clear" to slow you down.

2) Rebuttal speeches should collapse to the important arguments in the round and tell me why I should vote on them. When the LOR or PMR ends up being a line-by-line speech without crystallization, I inevitably have to do more work to weigh the issues myself.

3) PLEASE make sure your plan text is clear. The aff/government should briefly explain the plan in the PMC and should provide a written text to the negative/opp if requested. This benefits everyone: it protects affirmative ground, it provides predictability for the negative, and it makes it easier for me as a judge to evaluate the round. I would urge caution with "plan is the resolution" -- this makes sense only if the resolution names a specific piece of legislation or SCOTUS case.

4) Please don't be mean to your opponents. I find verbal aggressiveness off-putting and contrary to the goals of debate as an educational activity.

Specific Issues

1) I have a moderately high threshold for voting on topicality and tend to prefer reasonability over competing standards. I'm open to RVIs if they are clearly explained.

2) Conditionality is fine. Multi-condo makes me want to roll my eyes, but you need to make arguments for why why multi-condo is bad.

3) I viscerally dislike "gut check" arguments and have never voted on one. It's possible that I would vote on a gut check if your opponent is arguing something plainly ridiculous (e.g., "we will solve global warming by making rhinoceroses run on giant treadmills"), but 99 times out of 100, the better option would be to come up with a more specific argument.

4) It is unlikely that I will vote for arguments that are based on the social identity of people in the round.


I'm somewhat skeptical of kritiks, but not totally closed-minded about them. A good K should function like an ideological counterplan that brings clarity to the debate by highlighting the ideological/philosophical assumptions present in the negative and affirmative worlds. To win my ballot with a K, you need to show how your K links to the resolution and provide a clear thesis/critical perspective, link, and (in Parli) alt-solvency.

You're likely to lose my ballot when there isn't a link or when the terms of your critical perspective are unclear. I consider it abusive to refuse to answer questions about the K during cross-x or to deflect with silly answers. Additionally, I'm not crazy about K-Affs, but I will listen to them with an open mind.


4 rounds

I am new to collegiate debate and come from a background of more than a decade of teaching public speaking and rhetoric. I look forward to this opportunity to learn and grow in the world of parliamentary and policy debate. Please help me by doing the following:

· Slow down! I cannot handle speed

· Avoid debate jargon and use simple clear language

· Use clear, well-organized, rational arguments

· Assume I am ignorant of the issues you are discussing and provide me with all the information I need to understand your argument

· Use credible information and avoid know biased or unreliable sources (e.g. PETA, Breitbart news, AV club)

· Keep your arguments relevant to the topic. It is your job to establish links to the resolution.

· Avoid ad hominem attacks. You can call out your opponents for making a terrible argument but please do not call you opponents terrible people

Jake Quinn Paradigm

3 rounds


I competed in Parliamentary Debate for a couple of years in high school and now am a second-year debater for Parliamentary Debate at Berkeley. I love debate for its creativity, diversity of arguments, and critical thinking.

Quick Notes:

- I will flow your round. Unless otherwise convinced, I will vote for the team that has the most potent and persuasive offense on the flow

- Please, please, please collapse on the negative to one position. I have made mistakes before on the flow in messy rounds when the negative does not collapse and it makes me sad. I do not actively seek out judge intervention, but it might happen when the flow gets too messy.

- Also, please explain the implications of you buzz words/taglines. Recently, I have found myself voting against technical debate (much to my chagrin) because I do not think buzz words have been adequately contextualized to the round. It is much like fleshing out an impact. I want to see the entire reasoning behind the argument (e.g. it is not sufficient to say "perm" without a perm text or it is not sufficient to say "frames them out" without specific interactive analysis).

- It is the burden of the affirmation to do something besides the status quo (make offense); if neither team has offense by end of round I will most likely begrudgingly vote negative

- Default Roll of Ballot (ROB): Vote for the team with the best post-fiat policy option

- Default Roll of Judge (ROJ): Vote for the team that best functions under the ROB

- Default hierarchy of arguments: theory > kritik > case (but again, this is all determined by how the debate round is framed and is thus highly variable)

- Default framing of impacts: magnitude > probability > timeframe (yet again, this is all determined by how the debate round is framed and is thus highly variable). I also will default to proximal impacts first. Also, if I perceive rhetorical violence in round against me or a participant, not only will I dock speaks but I will also (probably) vote you down.

- My default treatment of permutations are as tests of competition and not advocacies

- My default framework of theory is competing interpretations. I will also default to potential abuse before proven abuse.

- I protect against new arguments in the final two speeches

- If I say "clear" it is because I cannot understand you. If I say "slow" it is because I cannot flow as fast as you are talking. Feel free not to change your behavior, but be wary that I may miss some of your arguments (and I might consider arguments later as shadow extensions to my flow and disregard them)

On the meat of debate:

Plan: Please have an explicit text and solvency; the more clear, the better. Reading plan text twice is a smart strategy if one decides to spread.

Advantage/Disadvantage: The more fleshed out the better. If it is separated into uniqueness, links, and impacts, it makes my job much easier. Be sure uniqueness is flowing in the right direction for your links, the links are sturdy, and the impacts are terminated (well-developed).

Theory: When running theory, be organized (interpretation, violation, standards, and voters or some equally viable system). I am okay with voters being cross-applied. Be careful with the wordings of your interpretations. Responses to theory should be organized ("we meets," counter interpretations, counter standards, and standard defense or some equally viable system).

Kritiks: Kritiks are the heart and joy of debate. That said, if you read an affirmative kritik, be sure you have a clear out against theory arguments. On negative kritiks, make sure that you have a clear framework, links, impact, and alternative or equally viable structure. If some parts are missing, it will be difficult to win the kritik. (Though, I may be a bit of a hack on critical arguments, I will still try to limit the backfilling I do).

Counterplan (CP): Make sure the CP is well fleshed out and explicit on why the affirmative cannot permutate (textual competition is a weak argument and not very convincing; try to look for functional competition or net benefits to the CP).

Speaker Points: They will probably be between 26-30

Reed Ramsey Paradigm

4 rounds

The short of it is I am a policymaker who evaluates impacts first and foremost, but I still expect the debate to have good warrants/evidence for justification of arguments. If you compare impacts through a nuanced calculus your odds are much higher for picking up my ballot. I tend to vote for the team who makes me do less work.


Theory is fine, but only under certain circumstances (mainly when it is egregious abuse). Topicality should have a DEFINITION otherwise its a glorified specification argument. I don't typically enjoy an 8 minute MO on T. Though, I have a much lower threshold when it comes to questions of conditionality.


I will listen to your kritik, but only if it has specific application (IE specific links) to the topic. Same goes for the affirmative. YOU MUST HAVE A TOPICAL PLAN TEXT! If you decide to reject the resolution in front of me odds are you will not win. I also believe that the negative is entitled to ONE alternative advocacy.


I believe that all debate is a performance via speak act, but if you want further clarification refer to CRITICAL AFFS section.


Framework, framework, framework.


I am a big fan of the uniqueness debate. That being said, you should be controlling the UQ to the DA, case turn, impact claim etc. if you want to win my ballot. Same goes for the affirmative in terms of their advantages. Negative DAs should have a clear link to the plan. Each portion of the DA should have clear tags, claim warrant and evidence.


I believe counter plans should be unconditional. They should also be competitive (functionally and textually). Besides that, I am willing to listen to CP theory, and am down for whatever in terms of this debate. I do think that CPs are a great strategy.


I flow on a laptop, so I can keep up pretty well. Though, diction/articulation are more important to me than rate of delivery.

If you have any specific questions just ask before the debate.

Sage Russo Paradigm

3 rounds

I'm just an IE coach performing The role of debate judge sometimes.

I'm a critical theorist and am going to lean toward arguments that take the deep complexities of life into account. Context is everything. No one is a "rational" actor. Dehumanization or a disregard for marginalization will never win with me.

I care about the depth and complexity of your arguments and the foundations they are built on. Live your politics.

Nathan Steele Paradigm

4 rounds

What is the most important criteria you consider when evaluating a debate?

I aim to subdue my bias and objectively adjudicate rounds, voting for the team that presents the most logical, well-reasoned, organized, creative, clever and dynamic arguments. Debaters should provide/contest criteria for evaluating the round. Highlight key voting issues during your final speech.

What are your expectations for proper decorum from the debaters?

Be respectful of your opponents at all times. You can be a little snarky but do not make it personal. Attack the arguments in the round rather than the people. Avoid obnoxious nonverbal-behaviors. Partner communication is acceptable, but don't parrot or puppet your partner. Heckling is acceptable but everyone (partner and opponents) should minimize interruptions to the debate and the flow of the speaker. I will listen to you throughout the round. I hope you will continue to listen to each other.

What strategies/positions/arguments are you predisposed to listen to and consider when you vote?

Don't lie. Convince me of how I should evaluate the debate. How does the affirmative or negative team win my ballot? I'm capable of believing any well-reasoned and supported claim, but I favor cogent, criteria-based arguments that are ultimately weighed against other issues in the round. When well warranted, I can vote on well-structured and clearly explained topicality arguments and kritiks. Debaters should be specific in their argumentation and provide clear voting issues in rebuttal speeches.

How do you evaluate speed, jargon, and technical elements?

In terms of speed, the debate should be accessible to your opponents and judge(s). For me, delivery can be accelerated beyond a conversational rate, but I value clear articulation, emphasis, inflections, and pauses. Delivery style may affect speaker points but will not factor into a decision. Points of order can be called when rules are broken; I will stop time and hear briefly from the opposing side before ruling.

Matthew Swanson Paradigm

2 rounds


I have been doing forensics for ~18 years. I debated trad and not and now I coach the same. It is fair to say that I am more familiar and comfortable with traditional arguments but I do like kritiks. I just do not know as much about your literature base as you probably want me to, especially for the more complicated ones. To be honest, I do not understand some of the arguments my students run and I do not know why they win but i am glad that other coaches vote for them. In the end, I don't care what you do (fiat the USFG to do something, tell me a story/narrative, framework, etc.) just have fun and be yourselves.

Unless directed otherwise, I will adhere to the flow as closely as possible. I will prioritize weighing arguments as the debaters instruct me or I will tend to default to these preferences: an unwarranted systemic impact over an unwarranted nuclear war impact and will probably default to ordering impact calculus as probability, magnitude, and time frame. I am not familiar with cards/authors and I am a little hard of hearing so I can't keep up with full speed and need you to speak up.


I am new to the event so I don't know most of your authors or lit base if you are not debating the topic. If you are debating the topic then I can keep up a little easier. Top speed is probably 400-450wpm to keep a solid flow. I basically don't care what you do in round, you aren't going to hurt my feelings because I don't really have them.

email chain: mjs17 at


It would be nice to be somewhat in the direction of the topic but how you do that is up to you. Am I willing to vote for advocacies outside of that, sure. My hearing issues are more evident in parli since we don't have cards that I can read along with. This requires me to slow and clear you more often than other formats. Having an additional copy of advocacies/interps that you can just hand the other team written prior to the round instead of using "time before flex begins" would be appreciated but I don't intend to be punitive if you do not.

***LD Specific stuff***

The only rules I can remember or care about are speaker order/times. I don't care about any of the other "rules". Don't read RVIs. speed good. potential abuse is ok, you don't have to prove articulated abuse, but if the other side says something about one or the other you should answer it because I am flow-centric, unless I am told not to be. k's are awesome.

Sean Thai Paradigm

3 rounds

I'm open to most stuff.


I default to competing interpretations, unless reasonability is won hard. Spec is good. What are RVI's? "We meet" your counter-interps. Voters are cool.


I am most familiar with this type of debate. I almost exclusively went for extinction. I will always use judging criterion and impact framing explicated in the debate, but as a last resort, I will evaluate impacts independently - this isn't to say that I will always vote for high mag/low prob, but that I am more open to these than other judges.

Don't delay. Don't Object. Don't cheato veto. Don't cheat. I have a low threshold. It's norcal, so I'll mention this: topical CP's are fine.


I appreciate and think ID politics and CRT have done more good than harm for both the real world and debate; but I do believe that sometimes it weaponizes identities and that debate is the wrong forum for it. I believe that K's need to clearly explicate how the alt works, the world post alt, and good links. I'm willing to buy a K that doesn't do any of these, but if these get indicted by procedurals or arguments will be damning. I hate simple reject alt's.

General Debate:

Condo is good. Multi-condo not so much. Don't try to understand my non-verbals, because I don't understand them. Sometimes I'm veryexpressive, sometimes I'm not.

Flex time questions are binding.

Novice Debates: i am more inclined to default to more of a reasonability/articulated abuse lens of debate. I suppose its just an arbitrary decision to decide this way, but it's just a gut feeling.

Paul Villa Paradigm

4 rounds

The metaphor of the highway patrol: On top of being an educator and decision making robot, I think part of my job as a judge is refereeing but I try to perform that function like a member of the highway patrol. If you are driving 70 in a 65 and no one calls to complain about your driving making them unsafe I am probably going to let you drive along. If you are going 95 in a 65 and I deem that as a clear and present danger to the drivers you share the road with, I will likely feel obligated to get involved. Most of the time that will probably just result in a warning or fix-it ticket unless something particularly egregious occurs. Drive approximately the speed of traffic and recognize that you share this road with a variety of people with different backgrounds, abilities, and experiences that might inform how they approach their travels.

Actual Debate Philosophy Stuff: In an ideal world I believe the Aff should be topical and the Neg should be unconditional. I’m partial to defense and think it can absolutely be terminal. I vote on kritiks as long as I understand them and especially their solvency mechanism and mutual exclusivity. I am not comfortable judging on the basis of your identity or anyone else’s. I am more likely to have your arguments if you go 85% of your top speed. The PMR should be small, the LoR should be pre-emptive. I will do my best to protect from new arguments in the rebuttals. Most RVI’s are dumb. If the format has rules I take them seriously but assuming neither side cares about those rules I am willing to just let the competitors play. I think you introducing a performance into the round and straying away from “traditional” debate invites me to make my decision on the basis of whether that performance was particularly compelling or cool.

kevin ozomaro Paradigm

4 rounds

you do you mannnnzzzz