Judging Paradigm - LD - Rowan E. M. Leigh

My old paradigm is below, it is still pretty accurate, so it should be fine for having it already. I just wanted to add that I am open to non-traditional debate styles, and arguments on theory, including argumentation on whether or not non-traditional arguments are fair in a particular round.

Dont be a jerk or a bigot.
Im a liberal utilitarian who loves Rawls and thinks the concept of rights and liberties is pretty cool.
Debate on clash is more important than reiterating ideas with no impact.
The debate should be entirely about impacts, which are measured by value structure.
VC debate is usually more interesting that value debate, especially when then values are compatible.
Dont argue which value is better if there isnt clash, argue who accesses it better.
Really, just tell me about accessing the benefits of the value. I dont care if your value is better if you didnt achieve it.
Framework debate is pretty nice, but shouldnt take up too much time.
Cross-ex should be exciting and productive.
Speed is fine, but signpost like crazy, and enunciate everything, especially your taglines.
Voters are super awesome. Provide me with them.
I dont inherently accept real-world over theoretical. If you and your opponent differ here, you both need to explain which is better.
Really, read the full paradigm I wrote. Its comprehensive, and I put a lot of thought into it. It will also help you to read it, especially if Im judging you.
Feel free to ask me questions on my paradigm if you dont understand components of it or want me to expand. Im friendly, and pretty casual about most things.
Im almost overly logical.
I'm super open to debate on social justice impacts.

I was a Brookfield East LD debater for 3 years (08-10). I dabbled in forensics and mock trial as well, and did a bit of student congress once. I also did a couple of tournaments in PF, but for the most part was purely an LD debater. I dont debate in college, and I dont coach, but my college pursuits largely range around LD-like skills. I have a philosophy major that focuses on ethics, logic, and political theory, and an English minor that revolves around rhetoric, composition, and critical theory. I have also been a writing tutor, with an emphasis on helping students with logical and rhetorical inconsistencies in their writing, as well as research errors. I currently study at UW-Milwaukee, and plan to get my masters there in Library Science and English (dual-degree program).

I am good with speed. I can talk quickly and listen to speed as well as all but the best of you. Make sure youre enunciating though. If you speed through things but your words blend into each other, you are doing speed wrong. Feel free to speed if you can do it somewhat well, though. That said, please slow down for the tag lines at least a bit, and enunciate your signposts extra-clearly. This is not just for me, it is for your opponent as well. While most debaters should be able to understand what youre talking about in general if you speed through cards and explanations, there is nothing worse than a debate in which your opponent does not know what your contentions are, but only thinks they do. This is not their fault, it is yours, and if I wasnt sure what your contention was for sure, Im not counting it as a strike against them, but against you. And no, that isnt what cross-ex is for. That is a really boring use of cross-ex, and while it is an acceptable use, Im not particularly interested in the time being used for that more than it needs to be. If your opponent needs to ask you about one tag, no fault on either of you, but if they have to ask about nearly all your tags, that usually means you didnt make them clear. (Obviously, switch this around and realize that if you are a debater who needs to ask your opponent a question, I wont hold it against you.)
As far as other aspects of communication go, I do value decorum. Your demeanor should be professional, and I wont tolerate mocking of your opponent. You can surely find a way to point out that theyre wrong about something without being downright rude about it. You might still win the round, but I will tank your speaks if you exhibit downright disrespect, or worse, if you patronize them. On the converse, I do not expect friendliness between you and your opponent, and you may feel free to be blunt and brisk during both your speeches and during cross-ex. There is a fine line between blunt and rude though, so if you are unsure, try to err on the politeness side I suppose. This is a skill youll develop at some point.
Grammar and organization are reasonably important in your speeches, and make sure to signpost clearly, not only in your constructive, but in your rebuttals as well. Give clear voters at the end. I might not vote on them, but they give me an idea of what you thought was important in the round, and this will weigh into my judging process to at least a small extent. If you dont give voters, you havent let me know what you want the round to be weighed on, and that means either I go with my own weighing mechanism (woah! unpredictable!) or with the mechanism provided by your opponent (probably not good for you)

CWI is the most important thing you can do. Far too often, I see a claim with a warrant. Give me an impact. Without an impact, I dont care about the claim, and I also have nothing to judge on. Impacts are what the round is judged by. Make sure the I is about the impact in terms of your value. If you dont give me a link back to your framework, the impact is essentially dropped, because the V/VC is your way of telling me how impacts should be evaluated.

This brings me to cross-ex. I love cross-ex if done right. I like my cross-ex fast-paced, interactive, and most important, exploratory. If youre the questioner, ask questions, ask follow-up questions. Listen to responses respectfully, but dont let your opponent waste your time. Be cordial if you need to ask them to move on. Dont spend time rehashing obvious points, but rather ask questions that show contradiction in your opponents case, or that ask for elaboration on an unclear point. Make sure that if one of their ideas seems sketchy, youve checked if they actually know what it means. This is the best time to show if an opponent is just reading a card that their coach suggested, or if they actually understand what theyre talking about. Dont wait for your rebuttal, because I will have made a mental note that you never gave them an opportunity to expound. If you are the responder, make sure you answer the questions posed to you. I will notice if you avoid the question. Dont spend a lot of time repeating what your tags said, but explain things in your own words as much as possible. Dont waste time in the round going on and on (this is a crappy trick, cx can help you as much as your opponent). Answer succinctly.

Weighing Mechanisms:
I suppose I believe that both sides have equal burdens to prove their sides. Im mostly going to judge on which world is better, and Im using the resolution as a general rule. Finding one example where the aff turned out badly is not the same as proving the aff wrong. This sort of has to do with my general moral viewpoint, which I will explain in a bit. Aff, prove that accepting the resolution usually is a good thing in your value structure. Neg, prove that accepting the resolution is usually a bad thing in your value structure.
Ah yes, value debate. The value is not the most important part of the round, but it is the way I evaluate impacts. As I said earlier, your impacts should always be about how your stance (aff or neg) would benefit the world, as measured by your value. This said, if your value is not at inherent odds with your opponents, feel free to point that out in-round, and go on with the points of real clash. If your value is Justice and your opponents is Morality, theres going to be a chance I can link in to either value using your case and your VC. I dont want to hear the circular argument of which comes first, or which evaluates which, as theyre both pretty nice things. If one is individual welfare and one is social progress, for example, there might be clash, there might not be, depending on the topic. If one is environmental welfare, and one is technological progress, there is certainly clash, and Ill have to decide between the two when weighing the round. Take a second during prep to decide if you actually have value clash, and if you dont, or if the values have a chicken-egg relationship, just say this in your first rebuttal and move on. Your other option, of course, is demonstrating that you can access your value and that of your opponent. This is a nice thing, and if it is an applicable move, use it. Im a fan.

Bottom line on value debate: dont debate whose value is better unless actually necessary, use your value as a tool to show me how I should weigh the round.
Value criterion debate is really where it is at for me. To me, the VC is the soul of the case. It can be both how you achieve your value and how you measure your value. Especially if both of you have similar or compatible values, tell me how your VC is the best way to reach and evaluate if the value has been achieved. Your VC almost certainly clashes with that of your opponent, so show me why yours is better. If they dont clash, theres usually a flaw in how one of you is using the VC. Lets assume its your opponents; show me why their VC doesnt mesh with their case.
You can debate this in terms of the aff world is better/neg world is better, but I cant judge in terms of inherent betterness. This quality is measured by some sort of value structure, so remember that.

My Personal Philosophy:
This brings me to my basic philosophical stance. Im a fan of J.S. Mill, Rawls, Rousseau, and Kant to varying extents (I also buy into some ideas of many modern utilitarian philosophers). These are my favorites, but, especially in terms of the last two, I am not always convinced of their ideas as being able to exist in the real world. I dont inherently buy real world over ideological, so if you and your opponent arent on the same page on that divide, youre both going to have to tell me why I should go real world or theoretical.

Ideologically, Im a huge fan of rights theory, both in terms of natural and socially-granted rights. These days, no one seems to go theoretical in LD though, so while Id absolutely love to see someone take an ideological stance on a resolution, Im probably going to be disappointed, so I wont go into this.
In terms of pragmatic philosophy, Im a utilitarian both in terms of ethics and in terms of political and social policy. I am much more of a rule utilitarian than an act utilitarian, because lets be real, act util is impractical and unpredictable. If a policy produces good results in general, it is good. If it tends to produce bad results most often, it is bad. Keep in mind, I really like Mills consequentialist defense of liberty (look up the harms principle, itll give you something of an idea, if not a complete one). I will certainly buy empirical proof that a policy is good or bad though, and please do not assume that I am buying into the concept of a nightwatchman state. I am not. My ideal government uses utilitarian thinking to set up a Rawlsian society. If it isnt clear, Im more into the liberal end of utilitarian thought than the conservative side.

Other Important things:
I will buy pretty much any idea, if defended and explained clearly and logically. Feel free to go radical and philosophical. Im game.
Do not be a bigot. I will not buy that any group of people (including the mentally ill, homeless, substance abusers, obese, or the poor) have any sort of inherent moral or intellectual failing. No homophobia, trans*phobia, racism, sexism, etc, obviously, but socioeconomic differences and behavioral and physical health issues are sometimes seen as acceptable characteristics to disparage, and Im not fine with that. I will generally not buy these as arguments, and your speaks will drop.
This said, I am highly open to arguments about how a particular position will cause these prejudices to become worse, or that a side promotes, say, sexism. Institutional oppression as a harm is great.
Dont misdefine terms please. I will understand them, and know that you misdefined them.
I will realize if you dont understand a philosophical concept (or a non-philosophical one, generally). Only use ideas that you understand.
Extend ideas on cards, not the authors name. Extend the card where I say ___ works way better than Extend my Helvetica/Smith/Johnson card. I write down that you used a card, not which name it is.
Debate definitions if necessary, but only if theres clash.
Debate sources if there is a reason to. If one is by a conservative/liberal think tank, and the topic is politically biased, debate this, especially if you and your opponent have competing statistics.
I have voted many times for positions that I disagree with. Its about logic and clash.
If your opponent drops something, pull your point through, but dont go on and on.
Observations are fantastic if used well. I love them.
Im exceedingly logical. Ill go for an emotional appeal if used well, and personal stories can be interesting, but they tend to be a waste of time. Logos almost always beats out pathos for me, if you have good enough ethos.