The Instigator
atheistman
Pro (for)
Winning
14 Points
The Contender
doomdayer
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points

A Libertarian Society Would Benefit the United States of America.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
atheistman
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/2/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,793 times Debate No: 9112
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (6)
Votes (3)

 

atheistman

Pro

A Libertarian Society is one where the only laws that apply are laws that prohibit taking freedoms away from someone else without their consent. These freedoms include life, liberty, and property. In this particular Libertarian society, soft drugs such as marijuana would be legal, along with prostitution, same-sex marriage, and many other things. Censorship would also be very limited because people have the first amendment rights of freedom of speech/expression. Abortion would be legal because a fetus is not a person, and only people have rights to life. This society would be beneficial because it would give citizens maximum freedom without the freedom extended to people getting hurt.
doomdayer

Con

Thank you for creating this debate and lets hope it will be both fun and informative.

You are arguing that a Libertarian society would be a good thing for the United states. Now you do provide a basic definition of what you mean by a Libertarian Society although I think we could both agree that it is neither a complete view or an all encompassing view of the movement. So at some points I will be using the broader set of ideals that are expressed at www.libertarianism.com and of course by their stand on the issues at the libertarian party platform at http://www.lp.org.... I will bring up some of the points therefore to prove initially how absurd the entire ideology is in practice.

After having established my frame of reference I would like to add that a libertarian society would probably be one of the worst possible systems to ever be put into practice anywhere. At first libertarianism sounds good , no liberty shall ever be taken away from someone else without their consent. All people will have individual property and individual rights etc. Lets take a moment to think of what exactly this means. I will raise then a few of the points it would make it completely impractical to have such a society.

Abortions: Whether you are pro choice or pro life I think we can all agree that abortions should not be taking place at 7 months or 8 months in a pregnancy, well in a Libertarian society that would be the case for whatever irresponsible person wanted to do that.

Crime:

" We support restitution of the victim to the fullest degree possible at the expense of the criminal or the negligent wrongdoer" the above quote was taken from the political platform I linked above, so how do you propose murderers and serial killers will be reimbursing their victims? After that let me know how you can reimburse a victim of a rape as well.

"We favor the repeal of all laws creating "crimes" without victims, such as the use of drugs for medicinal or recreational purposes." In short this is a statement that says among other things that you can do to yourself what you please be it marijuana, alcohol, self inflicted injuries, pcp, special k, lsd etc. And while such an attitude is quite fun to have is also quite irresponsible, most people while under the influence of one drug or another be that Prozac or weed or pcp have their behaviors changed and sometimes to the worse. So you will be punishing the person who took tabs of LSD and then proceeded to create an accident that killed 10 people, that's great but how exactly are you going to rewind the loss of 10 lives? If a society doesn't include safeguard like making things illegal or harder to get in the first place how is that same society going to prosecute people that after ingesting drugs for recreational uses that the are legal.

Environment:

"We support a clean and healthy environment and sensible use of our natural resources. Private landowners and conservation groups have a vested interest in maintaining natural resources."

So as a libertarian you would support a clean and healthy environment. Great so would I, heck most people would nobody truly enjoys inhaling toxins after all. Now how do you propose we get the corporations to follow suit. The society can not enact any laws sloping or prohibiting uses and methods that are harmful. And if the 20th century taught us anything is that corporations are the fastest possible way to destroy most of our beautiful Eco systems.
Even now most of our natural wildlife is constantly under duress and some animals and plants only survived extinction because of the creation of reserves and national parks that allowed them to avoid the dangers of us humans, the purely moral animals that we are.

You can also not tell any individual what to do with their lands, so lets say if I want to own the grand canyon [extreme example here] and build the new soccer stadium with a mall and a theatre multiplex that would be great. Of course the preserving of some of our natural land and the right use of it could be in my own self interest assuming I was immortal or had a lifespan that to some biblical figures but most humans are much more short sighted in our every day lives, don't take my word for it just look at history.

Business

Monopolies, legal. Check how that turned out with Carnegie and Rockefeller. I'm quite glad for anti trust laws.

Education: No free education, its better left to the free market. That way if your poor you get to stay poor, and if your rich well then you can become a scientist or a banker or a leader of the world.

Now here are two views from the same political platform that are almost inconsistent.

Defense
"We support the maintenance of a sufficient military to defend the United States against aggression. The United States should both abandon its attempts to act as policeman for the world and avoid entangling alliances. We oppose any form of compulsory national service."

Taxes
" We call for the repeal of the income tax, the abolishment of the Internal Revenue Service and all federal programs and services not required under the U.S. Constitution."

So you want an army, but your expecting to pay for it without taxes. But it is not a draft army either, so you want a professional standing army ready to defend the US coasts at all times which is good, yet you will pay how? Wait, possibly with peanuts literally since we can use them as currency now.

Finances
"We favor free-market banking, with unrestricted competition among banks and depository institutions of all types. Individuals engaged in voluntary exchange should be free to use as money any mutually agreeable commodity or item. "

Does anyone doubt that the organization of a single currency brings to a country is paramount to progress and evolution? I also wonder "mutually agreeable commodity" so how about body parts? How about sexual acts? What's to stop someone from using themselves as a mutually agreeable commodity or item if they cant pay any other way.

Retirement and Health Care
Well assuming your rich and have lived a long and sucessfull life then your in for a treat, you will have the best retirement plan have had some great health care along the way.

What happens if you lose your money at some point? Well forget social security you wont even get 1 dollar a month to live on. You either get out there and work or just roll over and die, are you disabled? Well your much better off just finishing your life off. As far as health care goes well, if you can afford good care great, if not visit your local mage he might charge enough for you to delude yourself into thinking that you have a chance to survive cancer.
Debate Round No. 1
atheistman

Pro

First, I'd like to thank my opponent for accepting this debate. I'd also like to point out that just because it's written on lp.org doesn't mean I agree with it. People's version's of a Libertarian government vary, just as people's version's of a Democratic or Republican government.

'Whether you are pro choice or pro life I think we can all agree that abortions should not be taking place at 7 months or 8 months in a pregnancy.'

In my description, I never mentioned that I supported third trimester abortions. A Libertarian society protects the right of life for the people, and a fetus is developed enough to be considered a person in the third trimester. I'd be perfectly fine with it be illegal after 6th months or pregnancy because women would still have the right to abortions.

Crime: Prison, perhaps.

'In short this is a statement that says among other things that you can do to yourself what you please be it marijuana, alcohol, self inflicted injuries, pcp, special k, lsd etc. And while such an attitude is quite fun to have is also quite irresponsible, most people while under the influence of one drug or another be that Prozac or weed or pcp have their behaviors changed and sometimes to the worse. So you will be punishing the person who took tabs of LSD and then proceeded to create an accident that killed 10 people'

In my description I said I favored the legalization of soft drugs, not hard drugs. Hard drugs would go against Libertarianism because they are very addictive which can cause a need for rehabilitation centers, which would be paid for by other people's tax dollars. Also, drugs like PCP are very likely to make you cause harm to other people or property. The behavior change weed causes, is for you to be lethargic. If a drug causes you to be lazier, then how does it make you more dangerous? If someone took LSD and then proceeded to kill 10 people in a car accident, they could be charged with driving while under the influence, just like the person who just got charged for killing 15 people in a drunk driving accident.

'So as a libertarian you would support a clean and healthy environment. Great so would I, heck most people would nobody truly enjoys inhaling toxins after all. Now how do you propose we get the corporations to follow suit. The society can not enact any laws sloping or prohibiting uses and methods that are harmful.'

Why not? Creating dangerous toxins for others to breathe in would hurt people. Putting regulations on corporations to limit pollution would not go against Libertarianism.

'You can also not tell any individual what to do with their lands, so lets say if I want to own the grand canyon [extreme example here] and build the new soccer stadium with a mall and a theatre multiplex that would be great.'

Well you never will own the grand canyon, and I'm pretty sure the owners of national parks wouldn't just sell their land if they wanted to keep it natural. The next owners would be in the previous owners' will, and would be trusted to keep the land natural.

'Monopolies, legal. Check how that turned out with Carnegie and Rockefeller.'

Monopolies would not be legal because if only one organization owned a type of product, then they could charge whatever they wanted for it. That would hurt people's budgets, so it would not be legal in a Libertarian society.

'No free education, its better left to the free market. That way if your poor you get to stay poor, and if your rich well then you can become a scientist or a banker or a leader of the world.'

I don't agree with the idea of no free education or that the United Stated should stop being the 'policeman' of the world. The world needs at least one country to be the policeman and as much as I hate it to be my country, I still think it's necessary.

'So you want an army, but your expecting to pay for it without taxes.'

No

'I also wonder "mutually agreeable commodity" so how about body parts? How about sexual acts?'

Why not? As long as it's consented then why should someone else's choices of how they spend money dominate theirs?

With the Retirement and Health Care, again, I don't agree with everything on lp.org. I was focusing more on an individual rights Libertarian society, not an economic Libertarian.
doomdayer

Con

I thank my opponent for his timely reply, and I do sincerely apologize for taking this long to reply. It is true that my opponent never truly states that he accepts the libertarians party platform as what he is referring to, but since he does refer to the Libertarian idea, I would ask my opponent to clarify what he truly means and his stance of the several issues listed on the platform party.

Since I am incapable of producing a counter argument for something that I have no frame of reference to. I am incapable of reading into my opponents mind to understand fully what he entails by libertarianism. I just follow the party's platform and his general guideline that "A Libertarian Society is one where the only laws that apply are laws that prohibit taking freedoms away from someone else without their consent." So if everyone is free as long as they don't give their consent to be slaves, then they are perfectly free of not paying for taxes, they are perfectly free for not caring for the environment that they own

And as far as one person not owning the Grand Canyon, granted at the moment that sounds like an extreme and imaginative scenario but in the age of free capitalism and massing of wealth who knows how rich 1 person might get.

Also there is no such thing as anti trust laws in libertarianism, if you support laws such as anti trust regulations etc, then your not a true and complete libertarian and the society that you suggested would be a libertarian society no more. If what my opponent meant to suggest in his topic is our current society but with a few borrowed libertarian principles like legalization of marijuana and other soft drugs, a strengthening of the bill of rights and other individual freedoms and the legalization of abortion (which is still legal right now) then that is a whole other subject matter.

You claim that you want the US to be the policeman of the world, you want anti monopoly regulation, we should have free or public education. Those statements alone disqualify you from being a libertarian. Please I ask my opponent to clarify exactly what is proposing before I continue to another round of arguing. I do thoroughly believe though that as far as your suggestion as it currently stand that for a completely libertarian society to exist in the US, and using the public idea of what libertarian means I have already provided sufficient arguments to prove the inefficiency of such a utopia like place.
Debate Round No. 2
atheistman

Pro

You mentioned that if I don't completely agree with lp.org's ideas about Libertarianism, then I'm not arguing for Libertarianism. This is not true because there is no concrete definition for a Democracy or Republic either. Democrats have different opinions about issues, along with Republicans. You can still be a Democrat if you're Pro-Life, that doesn't make you a Republican. You can be labeled as a Democrat or Republican if you overall agree with most of one political party's ideas over another's. I overall agree with Libertarianism.

If you aren't allowed to hurt anyone in a Libertarian Society, then why should you be the cause of government funded things such as roads and buildings going into disrepair because of not enough taxes to pay for them? And why should you be allowed to put others in danger by not helping with the upkeep of a military defending the country? Not paying taxes does hurt other people, along with using physically addictive drugs because of the tax dollars needed to pay for the rehabilitation centers. Not caring for the environment obviously hurts other people because it could eventually lead to the earth not being habitable for future generations.

Your statement about the Grand Canyon also doesn't make sense because according to you, if you're rich then you can buy the Grand Canyon. The owners of the Grand Canyon obviously don't want it to be ruined, so they wouldn't let it be bought for any sum of money.

My idea for this society isn't just a few borrowed Libertarian ideas, it's all of the individual rights of a basic Libertarian society with a different economic system.
doomdayer

Con

I would like to ask my opponent one more time then to clarify his views about the list of topics the party platform provides as libertarianism. It is true not all members of the democratic or republican party follow the views of the party platform to the letter yet if we were to debate we would use the platform as a common frame of reference. I am sorry I find myself incapable of knowing my opponents specific views in all topics to provide possible counter arguments so I will contend myself with what he has made explicitly clear so far.

"Your statement about the Grand Canyon also doesn't make sense because according to you, if you're rich then you can buy the Grand Canyon. The owners of the Grand Canyon obviously don't want it to be ruined, so they wouldn't let it be bought for any sum of money."

Why would it be necessary that the owners of the Grand Canyon don't want it to be ruined? well what if they do its their canyon after all, what if they want to turn it into a money making scheme that will make them rich now filled with malls parking lots and the rest of our nice little industries? There is no guarantee what humans want or will want, holding such opinions is naive at least, dangerous at most.

"Not paying taxes does hurt other people, along with using physically addictive drugs because of the tax dollars needed to pay for the rehabilitation centers." Who said the government will be making rehabilitation centers? as far so I know in a libertarianism society the government is only meant to hold a very minimal role in the lives of the people.

"Not caring for the environment obviously hurts other people because it could eventually lead to the earth not being habitable for future generations." While what my opponent state may be true, it is also evident that many humans follow the greedier side of their nature and really couldn't care less about future generations.

now if your saying that we should leave it to the human character and nature to care for nature and be good I would say your naive, wrong and history would serve as a giant example to disprove you. If you mean to say that in libertarianism that your talking about, not caring for the environment in your own property lands and not supporting a military etc. etc. are all illegal by law because it would end up hurting the future possibility of freedom, then I would have to tell you that what your saying is not libertarianism.
Debate Round No. 3
atheistman

Pro

I'll try to clarify as many of my views as possible. I don't want any censorship, I don't want any laws against: soft drugs, suicide, assisted suicide, same-sex marriage, pre-third trimester abortions, flag/money burning, prostitution, or consented sex. The laws I want are laws against assault, murder, stealing, and damaging someone else's property without their consent. What I want is an overall Libertarian society for individuals with overall democratic economy.

You keep bringing up the Grand Canyon example, so this is my final answer: I believe in the right to purchase land, but the current owners of national parks care more about preserving their land than money. They will hand down their land in their wills to people they trust not to ruin the land.

"Who said the government will be making rehabilitation centers?"

I didn't say the government will be making rehabilitation centers, I said they would probably need taxes to help pay for them. But even if we could keep rehabilitation centers open without taxes, that wouldn't be the only problem with hard drugs. Most hard drugs such as PCP make users very likely to hurt someone or their property. In my opinion, it would be better to keep hard drugs illegal but legalize soft drugs, than to legalize hard drugs and deal with all the problems it would create.

"While what my opponent state may be true, it is also evident that many humans follow the greedier side of their nature and really couldn't care less about future generations."

Not caring about the environment could affect people in the very near future, not the distant future. Many people care about how their kids' lives are going to be, or the grandkids' lives. The victims are valued more than the perpetrators, that's why it's illegal to murder and steal.

"If you mean to say that in libertarianism that your talking about, not caring for the environment in your own property lands and not supporting a military etc. etc. are all illegal by law because it would end up hurting the future possibility of freedom, then I would have to tell you that what your saying is not libertarianism."

I couldn't care less if you were pulling up all the plants in your backyard and cutting down all the trees, but if you built a giant factory on your property that polluted as much as it wanted, then there's no question that it would be hurting other people. I'm not saying people have to support the military, as I don't support it going to fight in Iraq. I'm saying people should pay taxes to support a military defending the country. If no one was paying to support defense, then we wouldn't be ready the next time terrorists attack because they think they'll get 72 virgins in heaven.
doomdayer

Con

doomdayer forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by rougeagent21 7 years ago
rougeagent21
...another run-on sentence. There is a grammar/spelling point to be won here people!
Posted by doomdayer 7 years ago
doomdayer
Ragnar, your right we probably cant all agree on almost anything, by all I was most likely referring to the majority, but even so it was a mistaken sentence thank you for pointing it out.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 7 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
"I think we can all agree"

You would be wrong, Con.

"
In my description I said I favored the legalization of soft drugs, not hard drugs. Hard drugs would go against Libertarianism because they are very addictive which can cause a need for rehabilitation centers, which would be paid for by other people's tax dollars."
And you are not only not libertarian, but unable to conceive of the consequences of libertarianism, Pro.
Posted by doomdayer 7 years ago
doomdayer
atheistman you have to tell me what you mean exactly, because if we are debating on a complete libertarian society is one thing, if we are talking about some views its a whole other topic.
Posted by Alex 7 years ago
Alex
Add something to the resolution such as "The positives would outweigh the negatives." and i will probably take it.
Posted by rougeagent21 7 years ago
rougeagent21
Although I am considered a "Conservative Libertarian," the ideology is an EXTREMELY slippery slope. In moderation though, I agree with PRO.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by atheistman 7 years ago
atheistman
atheistmandoomdayerTied
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Vote Placed by doomdayer 7 years ago
doomdayer
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Vote Placed by s0m31john 7 years ago
s0m31john
atheistmandoomdayerTied
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