Parker Cronin -- Michigan

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Judging philosophy:


parker cronin
centerville high school (4 years) / university of michigan (3rd year) Taught at the Michigan debate camps the previous three years (energy, poverty, military deployment) and am teaching there again next summer (space?). I also coach for the Georgetown Day School.

hello to the three or four people that will read this.

The most important thing you can do is run what you are good at. People that are familiar with me personally may have a tendency to think that I’m shanahan-esque k-hack that flows in a spiral and doesn’t evaluate non-critical theory based args. This is definitely not the case. Good debates are my preference! Go for what you are good at, win that, and you will most likely win the debate.

Now, the phrase "do what you are good at" tends to appear in so many judge philosophies that it has become almost useless. Despite this, I think that it's a pretty meaningful and true statement about myself. I really just don't have strong opinions about what a debate should be about. To me the distinction between "policy" and "kritikal" arguments is way overblown and largely arbitrary. I don't think that evaluating T is much different than evaluating a DA. I really just enjoy listening to arguments, the particular form or content of those arguments is irrelevant, it is really just a question of how well you debate those arguments in front of me. A great DA debate is super exciting to me, a great Lacan debate is exciting to me, a great international fiat debate is exciting to me. It really makes no difference to me what the particular subject matter is. Arguments are fun regardless of their particular peculiarities. All of this really just comes down to the fact that I just don't have strong opinions about debate arguments.

Argumentation outweighs evidence. If an argument is well-explained, warranted, impacted etc etc, then I will give it just as much weight as a card in many instances. You also need to make arguments that tie cards to the debate. just because you read a card doesn't mean I will apply it to what you want it to say. Explain how the card fits to your argument. Cards are building blocks for the overall argument that you make, they don't speak for themselves and are not arguments in themselves.

There is such a thing as absolute defense. Zero link to the spending DA if the aff spends no money for example. This usually comes into play when it's a truth question.

I flow CX.

The two things I do have strong opinions against are as follows:
1) bad plan flaw arguments (mispelled words, wrong capitalization, acronyms, etc) this does not mean that I won't vote on a plan-flaw if it's good. For example if the aff gives social services to the wrong group of people, or something along those lines. Just not plan-flaw arguments involving minor mistakes/typos.
2) Schopenhauer. I think that this is probably the worst argument in debate. You will get back speaker points if you go for this argument in front of me.
Important to note about each of these three things is that I will still vote on them, however I am much most sympathetic to the aff answers to them than most judges, ergo when I am interpreting the debate I am more likely to defer to their arguments. In order to win these arguments you REALLY have to win them in order to overcome my large bias.

Those that follow my judge philosophy may notice that I have taken consult counterplans out of the "arguments I have strong opinions against" list . I've come to the conclusion that on this topic (military deployment) they are not that bad. There is a really solid literature base on these arguments for this topic. My only real objection to consult was its often debate-contrived nature (example: I read a library-searches aff in high school and teams would read things like consult NATO or consult ASEAN, neither of which had any semblance of evidence) but if you have good evd about consulting in the context of the aff I think its fine.

Finally, and most importantly, have fun!! So many people take the competition too far, debate is meant to be enjoyable, not miserable. Being mean to the other team or your partner will get you low speaks. Homophobic, racist, sexist etc comments will almost certainly earn you a loss even if the other team doesn't say anything. Unpleasant, mean or angry debates make me sad  Pleasant, friendly and loving debates make me happy 

Please ask me questions if you have them! Enjoy!

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