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  #1  
Old 06-28-2010, 03:25 AM
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Default [WAR IX] Debate Section


Welcome to the WAR Season IX Debate section. My name is Lord Celebi, and I will be your WAR IX Debate Judge.

Debate is a clash between intellectuals. Two philosophies will fight in this arena of... issues. You may debate any side and use any debate tactics necessary (except ad hominem attacks) to prove your point to the other side. I'm expecting glorious arguments from everyone. Oh, and if activity is low, I might participate. :P

Rules are pretty simple. As mentioned above, don't use any ad hominem attacks, cite your sources if you use any, and be courteous. If you break any of these rules, I'll ban you from the section for the week. If you return before your ban is up, your team will be disqualified from earning points for the week. Don't make me think of any punishments beyond that. :<

One point will be given for each side of the debate, so there is no way for me to be partial.

Week 1 Debate:
Socialism vs Capitalism - Debate the tenants of these two economic systems. Which one, overall, is the superior system of economy? One point will be given to the socialist side and one point will be given to the capitalist side.
  #2  
Old 06-28-2010, 10:34 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

I guess I'll start with something short to get the ball rolling.

Capitalism is better than Socialism. Capitalism is easily compatible with political freedom, and in fact requires it. It encourages technological innovation as well as efficiency and quality in the production of goods and services by letting consumers buy the cheapest good/service at the highest price. Hard work and talent are rewarded in a capitalist economy; those who are the best are the most successful, while those who are not face inevitable bankruptcy. Capitalism emphasizes diversity in ideas as people strive to think of new ways to get around problems old and new.

Socialism is inherently unworkable. In a socialist system, the government attempts to define the good of the collective, and then apply that good to every single individual in the collective. Such as system can only discourage free thinking, diversity, and innovation. When individuals and groups have needs that are not the same as the collective, they can only be left out. Individual needs are dictated by the state. Socialism also does not reward talent and hard work. People living in a socialist state have no personal incentive for working hard and doing beyond what is strictly required of them by their superior. It taxes effort and subsidizes laziness. In addition, Socialism's emphasis on central planning is a recipe for aggregation of power and makes it highly likely to transform into military dictatorships.
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  #3  
Old 06-29-2010, 03:42 AM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

I guess I'll just chill here for the sake of chilling out here. The problem with the initial question is that the two are not opposites or equalities of each other. Socialism is defined as both economic and political theories whereas capitalism is a strictly economic system. By their inherent differences, there lies issues with a direct comparison between the two. If we assume that what is meant by "socialism" as "socialism under the pretense of Marxism", then we have something to talk about here. This, unfortunately, is a fairly common misconception.

The second, very common misconception is that American society is not socialistic. That, of course, is also false. Socialism's own definition aligns well with the word "taxation", meaning to gather wealth from all citizens of a particular state for the benefit of all. This includes things such as education, infrastructure, welfare, health care (such as medicare in America, or UHN in every other democratic country), etc. In essence, a state cannot exist without socialism, as it is inherently a part of the definition of "state". That in itself is not an arguable point. What is arguable is to what degree of socialism must a state abide with.

A third major misconception is the idea that one equates capitalism with "corporatization", which is also seen as "turbo-capitalism". Ironically, the current American economic system is not capitalism, but rather this turbo-capitalistic theory, which throws in several wrenches into the original capitalistic mold. These changes drastically change how economics have worked for the past several years.

May probably knows way more than I do about these things, but that's about the best I have at the moment. I will, of course, assume any points directed at capitalism as the "economic theory to which America runs upon" (or turbo-capitalism)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Capitalism is better than Socialism. Capitalism is easily compatible with political freedom, and in fact requires it.
Socialism is easily compatible with political freedom, and in fact requires it. That is to say that economic theories have little to no impact on the actual political systems that is being upheld. It is entirely possible to have a socialistic, democratic country, which ironically is also upheld as a political component of socialism: 1 person = 1 vote is a very powerful socialistic tool, as it treats every single citizen within a state as equals. Equality, of course, being the key word in socialism, right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
It encourages technological innovation as well as efficiency and quality in the production of goods and services by letting consumers buy the cheapest good/service at the highest price.
Technological innovation and efficiency are not always positive either. For example, technological innovation in the past decade of medicine did not change much, making such innovations only "neutral". Sure with the innovations of MRI and the like have changed how we diagnose things dramatically, what do we really rely on the most? Ultrasound, the medical team, etc. Things that are least affected by advances in technology.

An example of a negative impact is the advances of technology has driven people into increasingly difficult jobs that require less people: robots do the work humans did before. This leads to 2 major issues: the disappearance of blue collar workers and creeping credentialism. The former makes it more difficult for people to find jobs outside of the retail sector without high quality education, the latter making anyone not having university degrees worth nothing.

Another is "buying the best goods for the cheapest price": this directly leads to a decrease in durability of goods. The production wants to make the cheapest goods possible as well to make the maximum amount of profit, leading to exploitation of poor countries and use of subpar quality material. I don't need to point to cellphones to make my point, do I? (There is also the flawed assumption that people will WANT to do such a thing in the first place, which is also untrue, but IS assumed in economic theory.)

Of course, the key to all of this is the fact that despite these massive flaws that capitalism has, socialism has no real edge over it. Socialism does not "push innovation" as quickly. It does have the advantage of lacking the problem of goods durability. Since there is a low incentive to make the worst goods you can possibly find, the overall quality of the goods should proportionally increase.

I would also like to make a point about unions here as well. Economically speaking, unions are a no-no when it comes to capitalism. According to "Contingent work, Disrupted Lives", unions help shield workers from unfair laid-offs that is rampant in turbo-capitalism and also helps maintain high standards in worker compensation (work environment, benefits, wages, etc.). When turbo-capitalism actually discourages unionization, it also discourages things such as loyalty that comes with unionization.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Hard work and talent are rewarded in a capitalist economy; those who are the best are the most successful, while those who are not face inevitable bankruptcy. Capitalism emphasizes diversity in ideas as people strive to think of new ways to get around problems old and new.
The irony of this is that there are many instances of people who work 3 jobs and still have barely enough money to live on. The secret to reward in capitalistic society is one that is defined not only by hard work and talent, but also luck and class. Simply said, it is near impossible for a bright young black man from the ghettos of New Orleans to amount of anything close to the middle class despite being able to (and of course never heard of again, which fortunately we do have anthropologists documenting). I don't need to say anything more than Paris Hilton to convey the opposite.

I'm not completely sure if capitalism actually emphasizes idea diversity. The reason why I'm not technically sold on it is because societies like ours have made leaps and bounds in medicine despite it not being capitalistic. I'm sure nobody would argue that Canada has a UHN (socialist), yet Canada is where insulin was discovered by Canadian scientists Banting and Best and distributed to all diabetics regardless of social standing. That in itself is innovation founded upon a socialistic system. Therefore, R&D is not necessarily restricted under the circumstance of socialism either.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Socialism is inherently unworkable. In a socialist system, the government attempts to define the good of the collective, and then apply that good to every single individual in the collective. Such as system can only discourage free thinking, diversity, and innovation.
This, applied to education, infrastructure, health care, welfare, etc. You name it, it's socialist. It's also a political issue, not economic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
When individuals and groups have needs that are not the same as the collective, they can only be left out. Individual needs are dictated by the state.
This actually is an unfair statement in it that this isn't an advantage from capitalism either, because capitalism has the exact same problem. Why? This is defined as a social and political issue, not that of an economic issue. Therefore, any political system is subject to these issues, regardless of economic policies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Socialism also does not reward talent and hard work. People living in a socialist state have no personal incentive for working hard and doing beyond what is strictly required of them by their superior. It taxes effort and subsidizes laziness.
The irony here is that this is no different from those in the lower classes, the majority of the people. Also, the increasing growth of the retail sector (no benefits, minimum wage, etc.) is pushing the middle class down from blue collar work to these sectors. The final product is that they are then no better off working for next to nothing vs. going on welfare. The current American system isn't doing that much better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
In addition, Socialism's emphasis on central planning is a recipe for aggregation of power and makes it highly likely to transform into military dictatorships.
And I suppose that hoarding and maximal concentration of wealth in capitalism is better? By that same definition, America IS already under an aggregation of power and military dictatorship. You don't even need to look far.
  #4  
Old 06-29-2010, 09:07 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

Kenny, you seem to be operating on the assumption that Socialism as an economic and political philosophy can be combined with other economic and political theories to produce a happy medium. Of course, it can. However, I would venture to say that is not what we are debating. The United States may have socialistic aspects in taxation, welfare, Medicaid, etc., but it cannot be considered a Socialist political or economic system and thus is not a valid example of a successful Socialist state. From Wikipedia's article on Socialism:

Quote:
Socialism is an economic and political theory based on public ownership or common ownership and cooperative management of the means of production and allocation of resources.

In a socialist economic system, production is carried out by a public association of producers to directly produce use-values (instead of exchange-values), through coordinated planning of investment decisions, distribution of surplus, and the use of the means of production. Socialism is a set of social and economic arrangements based on a post-monetary system of calculation, such as labour time or energy units.
I believe it is quite evident that the America's wealth is produced not by a public association, but private producers, and that our social economic arrangements are not based on a post-monetary system of calculation. Hence, the United States is not a valid example of a Socialist economy, but merely that aspects of Socialism such as taxation are valid. Socialism does exist in degrees, but the minimal degree required for a state to be considered Socialist is high enough that most countries are not Socialist. They may have aspects similar to a Socialist economy, but that does not make them Socialist.

Quote:
Socialism is easily compatible with political freedom, and in fact requires it. That is to say that economic theories have little to no impact on the actual political systems that is being upheld. It is entirely possible to have a socialistic, democratic country, which ironically is also upheld as a political component of socialism: 1 person = 1 vote is a very powerful socialistic tool, as it treats every single citizen within a state as equals. Equality, of course, being the key word in socialism, right?
1 person = 1 vote is not as simple as it seems. While in theory, it should produce a state of equality, it is impossible for all people to vote on all things. Hence, we have representative government. Socialism is public control of the means of production. Therefore the only practical method is for the government, consisting of elected representatives, to control the means of production in the name of the populace. However, such a system is relatively easy to subvert for the representatives. Because the government is supposed to control the means of production in a Socialist economy, it essentially controls the livelihoods of the entire populace. Such a system is already so close to a military dictatorship, all it requires are elected representatives that no longer feel like doing the will of the people.

Quote:
Technological innovation and efficiency are not always positive either. For example, technological innovation in the past decade of medicine did not change much, making such innovations only "neutral". Sure with the innovations of MRI and the like have changed how we diagnose things dramatically, what do we really rely on the most? Ultrasound, the medical team, etc. Things that are least affected by advances in technology.
I do not believe a mere decade is a long enough amount of time to truly see the effects of technological innovation, positive or negative. Nevertheless, the benefits of technology surely outweigh the negatives. From steel plows to the steam engine, from oil lamps to lightbulbs, from adding machines to computers, from horse and buggies to automobiles, from manure to artificial fertilizer, I think it is quite clear that technological innovation has made the lives of people more comfortable wherever it has occurred. While there are certainly examples of "neutral" technological innovations, technological innovation as a whole by and large has driven the improvement of human civilization for all of its history.

Quote:
An example of a negative impact is the advances of technology has driven people into increasingly difficult jobs that require less people: robots do the work humans did before. This leads to 2 major issues: the disappearance of blue collar workers and creeping credentialism. The former makes it more difficult for people to find jobs outside of the retail sector without high quality education, the latter making anyone not having university degrees worth nothing.
Should people with motivation, drive, and talent not be rewarded for their gifts? The use of robots in industry creates cheaper, safer, and higher quality products. A robot will never be sleepy after a night of drinking and put a bad weld into an airplane wing. The trend of better technology ousting low-skill workers is nothing new; it has been this way since the start of the Industrial Revolution, and society has yet to suffer much because of it. Credentialism is nothing negative either. Companies invest money into their employees; why shouldn't they be able to determine that their employees are high-quality? Moreover, this phenomenon is again nothing new. Throughout all of history, highly skilled employees have been valued over unskilled employees. This is the natural way of things. The plight of unskilled workers today is arguably better than in the Gilded Age, a lower-technology age. Creeping credentialism exists, but it's just that: creeping. Growing slowly enough that society has little trouble compensating for it, so that its effects are mostly outweighed by other social issues.

(apologies if I missed something big in that article, as I merely skimmed it, but I don't think it stated that creeping credentialism is an enormous problem)

Quote:
Another is "buying the best goods for the cheapest price": this directly leads to a decrease in durability of goods. The production wants to make the cheapest goods possible as well to make the maximum amount of profit, leading to exploitation of poor countries and use of subpar quality material. I don't need to point to cellphones to make my point, do I? (There is also the flawed assumption that people will WANT to do such a thing in the first place, which is also untrue, but IS assumed in economic theory.)
If the goods use subpar quality material, then they are not the best goods. When it came out that Chinese factories had used lead paint in toys, was there not a huge scandal where many people in the United States ceased buying Chinese toys until they were assured that the goods were no longer using subpar quality material?

Quote:
The irony of this is that there are many instances of people who work 3 jobs and still have barely enough money to live on. The secret to reward in capitalistic society is one that is defined not only by hard work and talent, but also luck and class. Simply said, it is near impossible for a bright young black man from the ghettos of New Orleans to amount of anything close to the middle class despite being able to (and of course never heard of again, which fortunately we do have anthropologists documenting). I don't need to say anything more than Paris Hilton to convey the opposite.
Indeed, it is an unfortunate implication of capitalism. But the alternative if having the bright young black man to have his work taxed literally to nothingness to support those less bright is only minimally better.

Quote:
This, applied to education, infrastructure, health care, welfare, etc. You name it, it's socialist. It's also a political issue, not economic.
Education, health care, welfare, etc. are not examples of the means of production. Their being publicly-run is not Socialist.

Quote:
This actually is an unfair statement in it that this isn't an advantage from capitalism either, because capitalism has the exact same problem. Why? This is defined as a social and political issue, not that of an economic issue. Therefore, any political system is subject to these issues, regardless of economic policies.
A state with a capitalist economy does not necessarily have to have these problems. A Socialist one inherently does.

Quote:
The irony here is that this is no different from those in the lower classes, the majority of the people. Also, the increasing growth of the retail sector (no benefits, minimum wage, etc.) is pushing the middle class down from blue collar work to these sectors. The final product is that they are then no better off working for next to nothing vs. going on welfare. The current American system isn't doing that much better.


The income of the middle class has been growing, not shrinking. As classes are determined by income relative to the size of the population, this graph depicts a middle class that occupies the same percentage of the US population getting steadily richer.

Quote:
And I suppose that hoarding and maximal concentration of wealth in capitalism is better? By that same definition, America IS already under an aggregation of power and military dictatorship. You don't even need to look far.
Aggregation of wealth into hundreds of corporations dwarfed by the size of the United States government is far different from the aggregation of wealth and power into the United States government itself. Exxon Mobile, although the world's largest company, is not likely to attempt a military takeover of the government. On the other hand, if all the wealth were in the hands of the government, it would relatively easy for it to subjugate the populace.
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Dali: "You're right. Let's take some cats and splash them with water."

Last edited by Lusankya; 06-29-2010 at 09:12 PM.
  #5  
Old 06-29-2010, 09:10 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

I'd like to start by stating that simply filing one of the two under "bad" and the other under "good" is a gross oversimplification. I'll get back to that, but first I want to make a few quick responses. And by quick, I mean I intend to give Kenny a run for his money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Capitalism is better than Socialism. Capitalism is easily compatible with political freedom, and in fact requires it.
Hardly. In a purely capitalist system, particularly in Democratic countries (I must note the irony here), private corporations and wealthier individuals are easily capable of wielding sway over politicians through the use of campaign funds, which American history shows is a major determining factor in an election. In other words, companies have the power to rule the government when not given limits by that government.

Quote:
Hard work and talent are rewarded in a capitalist economy; those who are the best are the most successful, while those who are not face inevitable bankruptcy.
I'm sorry, would you like to tell that to the vast quantities of blue collar workers who are getting laid off every day despite working very hard, either because the company isn't making enough money altogether or because they're being replaced by machinery?

Quote:
Such as system can only discourage free thinking, diversity, and innovation. When individuals and groups have needs that are not the same as the collective, they can only be left out. Individual needs are dictated by the state. Socialism also does not reward talent and hard work. People living in a socialist state have no personal incentive for working hard and doing beyond what is strictly required of them by their superior.
I'm going to go with Kenny on this one. Paris Hilton.

Quote:
It taxes effort and subsidizes laziness.
Yeah, no. It taxes everyone and subsidizes unfortunate situations. The American welfare system only supports those who are still actively seeking employment. That's why it's commonly said that our unemployment is at 10%, but it's probably closer to 20%. The remaining 10% are those who have given up looking for work and don't qualify for welfare (i.e. are incapable of getting employment due to some kind of handicap or disability). Socialism does not necessarily directly benefit laziness any more than capitalism necessarily rewards hard work.

Now, as to the gross oversimplification: To say that capitalism is good and socialism is bad, or vice versa, implies that they are mutually exclusive. This is false. They're actually essentially a sliding scale. On one end is socialism and on the other is capitalism. This slider is in a different position for every economic position a government has. The policies vary, and have differing degrees of capitalism and socialism, but neither can really exist independently (well, they can, but then all of the power rests in the hands of one entity, either the government or the private sector).
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  #6  
Old 06-29-2010, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

Quote:
Hardly. In a purely capitalist system, particularly in Democratic countries (I must note the irony here), private corporations and wealthier individuals are easily capable of wielding sway over politicians through the use of campaign funds, which American history shows is a major determining factor in an election. In other words, companies have the power to rule the government when not given limits by that government.
Yes. When they are not given limits by the government. However, government can EASILY put limits on corporations and thus eliminate any such concern. There is no remedy for incompetent government. No political or economic system in the world can fix simple incompetence in government.

Quote:
I'm sorry, would you like to tell that to the vast quantities of blue collar workers who are getting laid off every day despite working very hard, either because the company isn't making enough money altogether or because they're being replaced by machinery?
If the situation was as dire as you suggest, then the streets of the US should be filled with teeming masses of homeless. Laid-off workers can find other jobs. Incompetence in management is part of "lack of hard work and talent" as well. Unfortunately, luck is indeed involved as well and as such even those with talent and drive may fall. I am fairly certain however, that most of them will be able to get along fine in other positions.

Quote:
Yeah, no. It taxes everyone and subsidizes unfortunate situations. The American welfare system only supports those who are still actively seeking employment. That's why it's commonly said that our unemployment is at 10%, but it's probably closer to 20%. The remaining 10% are those who have given up looking for work and don't qualify for welfare (i.e. are incapable of getting employment due to some kind of handicap or disability). Socialism does not necessarily directly benefit laziness any more than capitalism necessarily rewards hard work.
As I have stated, any American system cannot be considered an example of a Socialist state. America is not a Socialist state. Examples of systems such as welfare, health care, and taxation, are not taken in the grand system of machinery that it Socialism. You can take a perfectly good gear out of a crappy engine and put it into a different engine that runs fine. That doesn't mean the first engine isn't crappy because it has one good gear.

And Nate, since this is a WAR Debate, you don't have to present your middle-of-the-road opinion. Just pick a side and argue until your fingers fall off.

Wait Kenny, you're not in the WAR. O_o
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Last edited by Lusankya; 06-29-2010 at 11:05 PM.
  #7  
Old 06-29-2010, 10:58 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post

Wait Kenny, you're not in the WAR. O_o
Thats just how powerful Kenny is.

*Might post something relevant later*
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Old 06-29-2010, 11:21 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

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Thats just how powerful Kenny is.

*Might post something relevant later*
I guess you're entering under Team Kenny, then, Ken?
  #9  
Old 06-30-2010, 07:36 AM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

So you want an answer to whether capitalism or communism is better?

Neither definitively is. As a Christian, I see communism as the way told to us by god. The bible states at various times that we should give charitably and other similar things. If the rich are supporting the poor, then you have a minor form of communism going on. Taking Socialism to be very much the same as communism.

When i double click socialism in the original post stating the topic, my nifty little ad-on to define words tells me the socialism means:

Quote:
...a set of left-wing political principles whose general aim is to create a system in which everyone has an equal opportunity to benefit from a country's wealth. Under socialism, the country's main industries are usually owned by the state.
and that communism means, well, exactly the same thing except that it says "under a communist state" instead of "under socialism".

The same nifty program defines Capitalism as follows:

Quote:
Capitalism is an economic and political system in which property, business, and industry are owned by private individuals and not by the state.
(If you are interested, the program is called Google dictionary.)

But whilst the bible tells us that communism is better, is it really?

I personallythink not, is it fair that a man who has spent 25 or 30 years studying should be paid exactly the same as an unskilled worker? Is it fair that a surgeon be payed the same as a bricklayer? Definitely not.


As a nuclear and medical physicist, there is no way I can say that communism is better, and therein lies the problem, for different people, different systems are better, for those unskilled workers, socialism is much better, for the elite of society, the engineers, the doctors, capitalism is.

But this debate is not about that, its about which is better and means, which is better for the majority and the physicist, engineers and politicians are not the majority, the downtrodden workers are.

For society as a whole then, it simply becomes a matter of the percentage of people that earn above and below the average wage. In my country, Australia, the average earnings for an adult who works full time in the month of February were $1290.70 (source).

Below are the average wages per state in Australia:
State Average Annual Wage
Tasmania $55,103
South Australia $59,223
Northern Territory $61,771
Victoria $62,748
Queensland $63,866
New South Wales $65,707
Western Australia $70,210
Capital Territory $75,348
(Source)
The same source gives the anual average wage to be $64,594 per year

From the above table, it can be shown that only 3 of the 8 states, 2 of which have rather small populations have an average wage above the national average. This implies something that many people would already suspect, that is, that a few people earn very large amounts of money driving the national average up.

If we look at a table of earning based on profession, from the same source as the above table based on location.

Business Sector Average Annual Wage
Accommodation, Cafes and Restaurants $46,306
Retail Trade $48,703
Other Services $50,742
Arts and Recreation Services $56,971
Manufacturing $58,292
Transport, Postal, Warehousing $60,018
Health Care and Social Assistance $62,036
Wholesale Trade $62,457
Administrative and Support Services $62,884
Rental, Hiring and Real Estate Services $63,175
Construction $65,816
Public Administration and Safety $68,177
Education and Training $68,921
Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services $71,557
Financial and Insurance Services $76,487
Information Media and Telecommunications $77,033
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services $77,761
Mining $103,111

10 of the 18 industries earn below the average wage, once again, a majority though not by as large a percentage as the state difference. A clear correlation can be seen between location and industry and this must be noted.

Industries like mining are most common in Western Australia giving it the the advantage it has and the Australian Capital Territory is populated mainly by high end politicians and other civil servants. This explains their above average showing in the average state wage.

Both tables do however agree that over 50% of the population earn less than the average wage. If true communism were implemented in Australia with everyones wage set to the current average, then more Australians would be better off than would be worse off.

It therefore becomes apparent that Australia at least would be better off under a Socialist system assuming wise economic decisions were made. It is safe to assume many country, in fact, probably the majority would be better off under a socialist system. If a world socialist system were introduced on the other hand, most if not all people reading this post would be worse off. The worlds overwhelming majority would still be better off though. Perhaps this is why religions such as Christianity are so popular.


EDIT: since posting this, research has shown that communism is indeed different to socialism, communism focuses on ownership of the land (basically, the workers own the factory) and socialism focuses more on equal income. Communism really doesn't work.

EDIT 2: in the edit mode, those tables of numbers are in nice even distribution but the website gets rid of the extra spaces and won't let me indent properly.
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Last edited by pman; 06-30-2010 at 08:27 AM.
  #10  
Old 06-30-2010, 09:57 AM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

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Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Wait Kenny, you're not in the WAR. O_o
Kenny doesn't need to be in WAR. He's just that powerful. And it occurs to me that you're right, but I simply can't take a side in this debate because I find the mutually exclusive arguments to be idiotic and couldn't possibly do it without sarcasm or slipping. Au revoir, see you guys next week.
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  #11  
Old 06-30-2010, 12:24 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

Yes, pman, we realize that in a Socialist system, theoretically everyone would be earning the same as the average wage under capitalism... but in reality, everyone would be earning far less than the average wage under capitalism as the average wage plummets due to the flaws of Socialism. You seem to be missing the entire subtlety of the debate; of course is Socialism worked perfectly as it does in theory, it would be the better system. But it doesn't. The reality doesn't even come close to the theory. Instead of having equality in wealth, you have equality in misery as the standard of limit plummets, putting everyone at the standards of the lower classes.
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  #12  
Old 06-30-2010, 12:29 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

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Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Yes, pman, we realize that in a Socialist system, theoretically everyone would be earning the same as the average wage under capitalism... but in reality, everyone would be earning far less than the average wage under capitalism as the average wage plummets due to the flaws of Socialism. You seem to be missing the entire subtlety of the debate; of course is Socialism worked perfectly as it does in theory, it would be the better system. But it doesn't.
But what is the debate on, is it on that or which is theoretically better? If we take it to be the theoretical that we are after (which in my line of work, is all we ever deal with), then socialism is not better. As I have mentioned, it does not work. I acknowledge this but, if a situation were to arise in which socialism would work, then it would be the much better solution.

Logic is oftentimes faulty and I have chosen to base my argument on logic. if you can find a reason, purely by logic, that capitalism is better, let me know.

And in future, please provide some of these flaws, its very hard to form a rebuttal to a non-existent argument.
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  #13  
Old 06-30-2010, 12:34 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

Obviously reality.

And dude, I don't think you understand debate. Pick a side, and debate. Your true opinion need not be expressed in this thread. It is a measure of your debating skills. A debater should be able to debate even something he/she disagrees with.

You want an argument? Read the frickin' thread. I already have three posts, one of them gigantic, giving you points to respond to. I am not going to tailor-make a new argument every single time a person on the Socialist side comes into this thread.
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  #14  
Old 06-30-2010, 01:21 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

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Originally Posted by Lusankya View Post
Obviously reality.

And dude, I don't think you understand debate. Pick a side, and debate. Your true opinion need not be expressed in this thread. It is a measure of your debating skills. A debater should be able to debate even something he/she disagrees with.

You want an argument? Read the frickin' thread. I already have three posts, one of them gigantic, giving you points to respond to. I am not going to tailor-make a new argument every single time a person on the Socialist side comes into this thread.
I understand debate alright, I've won a state championship, what i have done is defined better, not stated that i prefer capitalism. I have said that from the perspective of an engineer, capitalism is indeed better, conceded a point you may call it.

You do need to individually rebut each point, I may not be saying the same things as the other pro socialist posters, if I do repeat something, you should again clarify why what I have said is false. In a spoken debate I would say something along the lines of "The affirmative persist in the mistaken belief that....."

Obviously this is not a spoken debate with the question worded in terms of affirmative and positive.

I will address some of you points from earlier post, even though they do not rebut what I have said in any way.

I can easily get up on my soap-box and say that neither capitalism nor socialism actually works by itself. You have implied that even though America is a capitalist country, it includes some socialist aspects.

This is true. It is however, one of the least socialist developed countries in the world. It also has the worst Health system of any developed country (Australian Broadcasting Corporation News, June 27th, 2010).

In your mass of text, I have found one solitary source to back up what you have said, and that only gives you a graph of middle class income to show that it is growing.

I challenge the legitimacy of that graph. I'm sure the data is accurate but it is still misleading. In the last 40 years, the average middle class income of Americans has gone up almost $20,000. Thats is entirely believable. My question is, How much as a loaf of bread gone up by percentage? I'm not sure but I'd put a significant sum on it being more than 50%. If that is indeed the case, The relative wage of the average american middle class person has indeed dropped in that 40 year period.

Quote:
If the situation was as dire as you suggest, then the streets of the US should be filled with teeming masses of homeless. Laid-off workers can find other jobs. Incompetence in management is part of "lack of hard work and talent" as well. Unfortunately, luck is indeed involved as well and as such even those with talent and drive may fall. I am fairly certain however, that most of them will be able to get along fine in other positions.
Lets start to dissect that shall we? As far as I've seen, plenty of US street corners have homeless people living on them, and when I was last in the US (5 years ago), your homeless rate seemed a lot higher than ours. But that is irrelevant, under socialism, nobody need be homeless, it would be government provided housing for all. And those people that got laid off by Holden (General Motors) in Adelaide late last year would have instead had reduced hours shared among many. Nobody would be going hungry without food on the table and nobody would be defaulting on their mortgage.

(I'm yet to find a logical reason why Capitalism is better than Socialism or why socialism doesn't work.)


Quote:
Such as system can only discourage free thinking, diversity, and innovation. When individuals and groups have needs that are not the same as the collective, they can only be left out. Individual needs are dictated by the state. Socialism also does not reward talent and hard work. People living in a socialist state have no personal incentive for working hard and doing beyond what is strictly required of them by their superior.
To steal something said by others, "Paris Hilton". Work doesn't always correlate with earnings.

And to say something of my own on the topic, Education levels don't correlate either. I go to a movie and watch it because the female co-star is good looking, she has been picked over other, more talented actress, for this very reason.

Goodyear, the man who invented the process used to turn raw rubber into a usable product did all the work, he never made a cent from his invention!!! Thats a clear case of capitalism robbing somebody of their due and a real fear to me. I am doing work with some other guys on creating a room temperature superconductor. Whosoever gets the patents for such a device will never have to work again, what if I get gypped at the end of the process and one person steals all the gain. Under a socialist dominant government, we would all get suitable reward and I need not have that fear. I might not get payed as much, but at least I'll get payed.

Quote:
As I have stated, any American system cannot be considered an example of a Socialist state. America is not a Socialist state. Examples of systems such as welfare, health care, and taxation, are not taken in the grand system of machinery that it Socialism. You can take a perfectly good gear out of a crappy engine and put it into a different engine that runs fine. That doesn't mean the first engine isn't crappy because it has one good gear.
Of course America isn't a socialist state but without the socialist aspects, it wouldn't be a state at all. The guys on the Manhattan Project with propelled you into the nuclear age did so for very little gain, they worked under almost soviet conditions, If they'd had the power to pull the plug when they wanted (which they would have under true capitalism, you don't have to work if you don't want to), America would never have bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They would never have entered the nuclear age when they did.


From a purely mechanical and technological standpoint, one must realise that America would have lost the space race had Sergey Korolyov not died just in the final preparation stage. (I hope thats mentioned here, I didn't bother to read it because I already knew all this stuff. Obviously the Socialist system was much better at creating technological advancement.

I'm still looking for an example of a purely capitalist state that actually works by the way!

EDIT: wiki says that the rocket program was flawed but it is actually believed that it was political infighting between Mishin and Glushko which could happen in a capitalist government just as easily. (Space Race, BBC TV, 2007?)
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Last edited by pman; 06-30-2010 at 01:24 PM.
  #15  
Old 06-30-2010, 02:18 PM
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Default Re: [WAR IX] Debate Section

Quote:
I challenge the legitimacy of that graph. I'm sure the data is accurate but it is still misleading. In the last 40 years, the average middle class income of Americans has gone up almost $20,000. Thats is entirely believable. My question is, How much as a loaf of bread gone up by percentage? I'm not sure but I'd put a significant sum on it being more than 50%. If that is indeed the case, The relative wage of the average american middle class person has indeed dropped in that 40 year period.
The graph factors in inflation. The title says "in 2006 dollars".

Quote:
Lets start to dissect that shall we? As far as I've seen, plenty of US street corners have homeless people living on them, and when I was last in the US (5 years ago), your homeless rate seemed a lot higher than ours. But that is irrelevant, under socialism, nobody need be homeless, it would be government provided housing for all. And those people that got laid off by Holden (General Motors) in Adelaide late last year would have instead had reduced hours shared among many. Nobody would be going hungry without food on the table and nobody would be defaulting on their mortgage.
As stated before, the alternative is misery for all.

Quote:
To steal something said by others, "Paris Hilton". Work doesn't always correlate with earnings.
It doesn't always in a capitalist economy, but it never does in a Socialist economy.

Quote:
Goodyear, the man who invented the process used to turn raw rubber into a usable product did all the work, he never made a cent from his invention!!! Thats a clear case of capitalism robbing somebody of their due and a real fear to me.
He would not make a cent from his invention under Socialism either. In fact, he would not even have the hope of making a cent from his invention, and thus probably would never have invented it.

Quote:
Under a socialist dominant government, we would all get suitable reward and I need not have that fear.
Under a socialist government, you get no reward at all.

Quote:
Of course America isn't a socialist state but without the socialist aspects, it wouldn't be a state at all. The guys on the Manhattan Project with propelled you into the nuclear age did so for very little gain, they worked under almost soviet conditions, If they'd had the power to pull the plug when they wanted (which they would have under true capitalism, you don't have to work if you don't want to), America would never have bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They would never have entered the nuclear age when they did.
Uh. What?

You're missing the point. You can't take a single aspect of a Socialist system, plug it into a capitalist economy, watch it work, and declare that it would work under a Socialist system. The only large-scale Socialist systems where the means of production are fully owned by the government are vastly poorer than capitalist economies. The USSR, Cuba, North Korea, and China (China in particular, as it has become much more wealthy after a conversion to a capitalist economy) are real-world demonstrations that whereas Capitalism creates poverty for some, Socialism gives poverty for all.

Quote:
From a purely mechanical and technological standpoint, one must realise that America would have lost the space race had Sergey Korolyov not died just in the final preparation stage. (I hope thats mentioned here, I didn't bother to read it because I already knew all this stuff. Obviously the Socialist system was much better at creating technological advancement.
It doesn't. But the wiki does mention that the technology used in the United States was superior to Soviet technology.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
He also had to work with technology that in many aspects was less advanced than what was available in the United States, particularly in electronics and computers.

Korolyov's successor in the Soviet space program was Vasily Mishin. Mishin was a quite competent engineer who had served as Korolyov's deputy and right-hand man. After Korolyov died. Mishin became the Chief Designer, and he inherited what turned out to be a flawed N1 rocket program. In 1972, Mishin was fired and then replaced by a rival, Valentin Glushko, after all four N-1 test launches failed. By that time, the rival Americans had already made it to the Moon, and so the program was canceled by CPSU General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev.
It also states that the Soviet N1 rocket was inherently flawed, and thus Krolyov's continued life would not have caused them to win the Space Race. So not only is your statement that Soviet technology was better than American technology in the case of the Space Race false, it is also false in general.

Quote:
I'm still looking for an example of a purely capitalist state that actually works by the way!
For much of its history, the United States was a near-pure capitalist state with nearly zero government restrictions on business. While this state did indeed create a huge disparity in wealth, it also engineered the economic growth that has transformed the US into the modern economic superpower it is. Again, we are not asking for Capitalism to be perfect. We are merely asking if it is better than Socialism. It is, and by far. Capitalism creates growth and wealth (for some). Socialism creates stagnation and poverty (for all). The relative success of Capitalist economies as opposed to the utter failure of all Socialist systems more than justifies the statement that Capitalism is better than Socialism.

Quote:
EDIT: wiki says that the rocket program was flawed but it is actually believed that it was political infighting between Mishin and Glushko which could happen in a capitalist government just as easily. (Space Race, BBC TV, 2007?)
I don't consider television programs to be believable sources.
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Dali: "I know what the picture should be ... We take a duck and put some dynamite in its derriere. When the duck explodes, I jump and you take the picture."
Halsman: "Don't forget that we are in America. We will be put in prison if we start exploding ducks."
Dali: "You're right. Let's take some cats and splash them with water."

Last edited by Lusankya; 06-30-2010 at 02:22 PM.
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