The Instigator
geothermal
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
ClassicRobert
Con (against)
Winning
13 Points

A Resource Based Economy is better than Free Markets

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
ClassicRobert
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/10/2013 Category: Economics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,365 times Debate No: 34678
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (17)
Votes (4)

 

geothermal

Pro

Hello I am new and this will be my first debate here.
Statement: A Resource Based Economy is a better system than Free Markets in the long run.
PRO will agrue why a Resource Based Economy is better in the long run.
CON will argue why a Free Market Economy is better in the long run.

Definition:
Resource Based Economy is an economic system where currency/money is no longer used and the entire earth and its resources become a common heritage of all humans.
All human beings have equal access to all resources and necessities of life.

Round 1-Acceptance

Goodluck!
ClassicRobert

Con

I accept. Good luck on your first debate!

Definition Free Market

A market economy based on supply and demand with little or no government control (1)

Sources:
1. http://www.investopedia.com...
Debate Round No. 1
geothermal

Pro

Here is my first and main argument on why a Resource Based Economy would be better in the long run.

TECHNOLOGICAL UNEMPLOYMENT

This will be the Achilles heel of a Free Market Economy. Regardless if we have a Free Market or a Resource Based Economy, Technological Unemployment is inevitable. The advancement of technology is growing at an accelerating rate, radically reshaping industries and the global economy.
Here are the technologies that are currently changing (and will change) our lives:

1. Computer and Machines

According to Moore’s Law, the number of transistors in an integrated circuit doubles approximately every 18 months, which is why the capacity of computers and machines to perform tasks is getting better and faster while at the same time becoming cheaper.

Companies are implementing more and more of technology in their businesses to automate work, which will continue to displace human workers into the future.

It is very beneficial for businesses, but not so much for the overall working population.

Most of the jobs being replaced by technologies today are the physical and monotonous work such as the ones found in manufacturing and retail industries.

Few Examples: Robots in car factories, self-checkout lanes replacing cashiers, automated phone voice systems for telemarketing/customer service

2. Internet(The Digital Revolution): P2P, Open Source, Social Networking, and the ”Cloud”

The Internet has been disrupting retail industries and other businesses. Companies are retrofitting their business models which increasingly revolves around the internet, displacing many workers.

Almost anything you want to buy can be purchased on the internet.
Online shopping sites such as Amazon & Ebay are quickly outcompeting the brick and mortar stores.
Netflix and Redboxes are replacing Blockbuster(brick and mortar).

Owning a website and a warehouse requires significantly less overhead, which means less employees. Additionally even the warehouses are also becoming automated.

- Information is becoming essentially free. The amount of information in the internet is massive and ubiquitous, which will only continue to expand.

Today any type of information can be digitized into files which can be text, documents, video (movies), audio (music), etc. The internet allows people to share information through files with other people around the world. People are increasingly watching tv shows streaming online, download movie torrents instead of buying dvds/bluray, and downloading music for free. Yes torrents are illegal but no one really cares; the only people losing out are the big record and entertainment companies who can't make a profit.

Education is becoming priceless (literally) since anybody can learn almost anything for free on the internet through sites such as Google, Wikipedia, Khan Academy, MIT Opencourseware along with the vast amount of growing video tutorials on almost any subject on Youtube. This is making the value of going to college worth less and less, if the end goal is just to obtain a piece of paper in order to get a job. Unless that job is within the science/technology/engineering field, it will most likely be displaced by technology sooner in the future.

Open Source Communities is a great representation of how a resource based economic system would work. People share information and ideas, collaborating with each other to accomplish a goal or task without the incentive of money.

3. 3D printers & Nanotechnology

Although still in its infancy, it is a fast emerging technology that is eventually bound to replace the manufacturing and retail industry in the future. In the future this technology will allow us to create almost any object in the comfort of our own homes. With 3D printers you can make clothes, shoes, tools, bags, instruments, sport equipment, automobile chassis, buildings etc.

Nanotechnology is the next step of 3D printing and will allow us to molecularly construct almost any object, material, or matter. This means we can create food, electronic gadgets, living tissues and organs. Though this technology is still way far off into the future, it is very promising.

So why would businesses continue to invest in technology/computers/machines?
It would be to their best advantage to do so. The advantages are:
1. Higher Profits - It’s significantly less expensive than human labor in the long run.
2. Higher Productivity - Computers/machines accomplish tasks significantly quicker, more efficiently, accurately, and precisely than humans.
3. Can work 24/7, Doesn’t get tired (of course until it wears out or gets broken), doesn’t nag, doesn’t need vacations/ 401ks/pensions/insurance/& other liabilities.

Of course there are still many jobs today that can’t be replaced by the automation of technology yet, but eventually anything that can be automated, will. Keep in mind this a long term process, but the trend is clear and it is moving in this direction.
This disturbance of industries is what will cause the majority of the working population to be displaced in a Free Market.
No work means no money, thus no purchasing power. We'll have a very high level of productivity, yet with only a few people that can afford them.

Old industries might fall, but new industries emerge which means creation of new jobs. So people aren't out of luck after all right?
Yes, this is true. There will still be people who have to design and maintain the machines and computers.
Even so computers and machines will eventually be able to massproduce and repair themselves.
The work that machines can't replace are the designing and creating of new ideas, technologies, and systems.
Machines currently lack imagination/creativity, and don't have the capability to critically think (at least until we have AI).
The only people that would really have jobs in the future will be computer programmers, engineers, scientists, and teachers. The problem is many people will be not able to learn and adapt quickly to this fast change of technology and will be left behind.

ClassicRobert

Con

I will first try to refute my opponent’s arguments. This will be difficult, as he just stated pieces of information rather than connecting them to the resolution and making arguments, but I will still do my best to try to understand what he’s getting at.

Technological Unemployment

  • “This will be the Achilles heel of a Free Market Economy. Regardless if we have a Free Market or a Resource Based Economy, Technological Unemployment is inevitable.”
    • My opponent claims that technological unemployment is inevitable in both economic systems, but does not give any reason why it is only bad in a free market economy. I would actually argue that this isn’t exactly a problem for a free market economy. In fact, it is a sign of progress. Sure, some of the menial jobs are going to be eliminated. However, that just means that society will have lower demand for workers performing monotonous tasks. Simply put, the market will simply end up demanding more workers in the services industry, where humans are more effective, rather than the goods industry, where machines will be more effective. However, in a resource based economy, there is no incentive to work (which will be explained more later), and in a free market economy, there is still the monetary incentive to work in the service industry, which means that there will still be a large amount of workers performing services. The free market is more effective at handling technological unemployment for those reasons.

My opponent then just goes on to talk about how machines are replacing humans in various fields without really making any arguments connecting his statements to the resolution. I am under no obligation to address facts that have no arguments associated with them.

Case for Con

Money is an Incentive towards Progress

  • In a resource-based economy, there is little to no human progress. When everybody simply gets what they need, what motivation is there to succeed? If the person could simply sit around and do nothing, or that person could cure cancer and get the same benefits as sitting around and doing nothing, why should he cure cancer? He get’s no benefit from it. He therefore has little to no motivation to cure cancer. However, money solves this problem. The person who cures cancer will be able to receive massive monetary benefit, and people are trying to cure cancer for that exact reason. My opponent might end up arguing that doctors should do this out of pure altruism. However, if altruism is the only reason, then the amount of brilliant minds searching for the cure would be massively reduced. When the amount of people searching for the cure is reduced, the amount of time to find the cure will be raised, thus slowing human progress. Also, in a world where people are simply given what they need, there are other people who still have to produce. My opponent spoke of how people will no longer be working in labor, and how machines will replace them. However, there are some fundamental problems with this. Though the machines will be working, people will still be necessary to build the machines, distribute them, repair them, change their programming if necessary, handle the more intricate work, and other provide services people desire. While Pro has argued that eventually machines will be able to design and maintain themselves, humans are required to advance them to this point. While I have already addressed this, there is the problem with motivation. Also, human made goods will still be highly valued. For example, hand made guitars are perceived to be of much higher value, and for that reason, are purchased at a much higher price. The point is, people will still be necessary. Why, though would a person do this work if they don’t receive extra benefit from the work? By definition, a resource based economy would give everyone exactly what they need, and nothing more. They would have no incentive to be productive. The elimination of a monetary system and the transition to an economy based purely on altruism would be catastrophic, and would drastically reduce productivity and slow progress.

Monetary Incentive allows for Higher Production

  • It has already been established that without money, progress is severely slowed, almost to the point of being stopped. However, when the monetary incentive is in place, people are constantly trying to become more cost and time efficient. This means that, as time goes on, goods will be able to be produced at a lower and lower resource cost, meaning that the resources will last longer. When progress is slowed as dramatically as removing the monetary incentive, as would be done in a resource based economy, would do, then the resources will last a shorter amount of time than otherwise, and humanity will be resource poor sooner.

The Arts

  • In a resource based economy, people will only be provided with what is necessary to survive. However, the arts are not necessary to survive. People would need to acquire the art materials, but since they will have been conditioned to the laziness associated with not having to work, they will not go out of their way to mix the paints, build the guitars, construct the pencils, etc. If humanity was switched to a resource based economy, a large-scale culture shock would be suffered, as art would not be as readily produced.

Overall Economic Wellbeing

  • If every person were simply given what they needed to survive, then there would still need to be producers for the goods and services required. With no incentive to produce, there would be far less goods and services produced, meaning that far less goods and services will be distributed, meaning that the overall economy would be worse off.
Conclusion
  • My opponent has yet to actually make an argument, instead opting to simply state facts, so he isn't fulfilling his burden of proof. I look forward to my opponent's response.
Debate Round No. 2
geothermal

Pro

From now on I will refer to the Resource Based economy as an “RBE” to make it shorter.
For the 3rd round I will disprove the erroneous claims made by my opponent in the 2nd round.


False Claim #1: "in a resource based economy, there is no incentive to work.
When everybody simply gets what they need, what motivation is there to succeed? If the person could simply sit around and do nothing, or that person could cure cancer and get the same benefits as sitting around and doing nothing, why should he cure cancer? He get’s no benefit from it. He therefore has little to no motivation to cure cancer.

Classicrobert claims that since everything will be provided, there wouldn't be any motivation to be productive.
That people will become lazy bums who lay on their hammocks sipping kool-aid all day. This assumption is false.

Solving problems is the real incentive

In a RBE, the incentive is not money; the incentives are solving current problems, improving and discovering.
So why exactly would a person be motivated to cure cancer if he gets the same benefits as doing nothing? This is a good question, but the answer is simple and lies within the question itself. The motivation of curing cancer is TO CURE CANCER. Curing cancer is actually already a benefit within itself, even if that person doesn’t have cancer. It benefits him because he doesn’t have to worry about getting the disease in the future and would make the rest of society healthier and happier which improves the whole economy. Today there are lots of people who do all kinds of volunteer services around the world which just disproves your argument that people would not be motivated to work without money as an incentive.

People’s motivations have not always been money. Most of the greatest inventions and technologies in history were created by people who wanted to make a significant impact on society such as Albert Einstein, Nikola Tesla, and Thomas Edison. The Wright Brothers invented the airplane because they wanted to prove that a flying machine was possible which would revolutionize transportation. The main reason Steve Jobs developed the iPod and iPhone was not because he was after the profits, but because he wanted to revolutionize the way we listened to music and the way we communicate and interact with our phones; the money was just secondary.

People actually operate in a RBE everyday such as taking caring for their kids and doing chores around their house. People clean their homes not because someone is paying them to do it; they do it so that they have a clean house to live in, which is the reward/incentive. My opponent might argue that it’s because these actions benefit the person himself. But if that same person is performing service for another person, then he wouldn’t do it without a monetary incentive, because it doesn’t benefit him. Well the fact is that the entire earth is our home and we are all connected. We are more productive as a team than individual groups competing against each other. In a RBE, every work performed by individuals benefits themselves and the whole community. It is a win-win situation.

Money as an incentive is an illusion

The true reason people work is not for the money, but for the standard of living that the money affords them.
Money is only an incentive because the stuff that you want and need has a price tag.

Consider this simple scenario:

A homeless person is hungry and wants food. Since food costs money in a free market, he works to get money. Then finally he uses the money that he earned to buy food. What’s my point? Money was never the incentive for working. Obtaining the food to satisfy his hunger was the real underlying incentive for wanting to work in the first place. Money only became an incentive because it was the only means to get the food which was his end goal. If you were stranded on island with a suitcase full of cash, but had no food, clothing, shelter, or technology, it would have no purpose. Money has no real intrinsic value within itself; its either only pieces of paper or numbers on a computer.You can’t eat it; you can’t build houses, cars, cell phones, or computers with it. Besides wiping your butt or creating a bonfire, it doesn’t have any purpose by itself.

False Claim #2 “In a resource based economy, there is little to no human progress.”

An RBE would actually have significantly more progress than a free market because it creates a better opportunity cost. People would have more time to focus on innovating and actually solving problems, instead of being constrained from working hours and hours at their jobs. This is akin to the period of the Neolithic Agricultural Revolution which liberated tribes from hunting all day and allowed them to devote more time in the diverse labors such as arts, music, pottery, tool making, etc. Art would actually flourish and people will be able to spend more time pursuing their passion such as playing instruments or sports. The free market hinders the growth and innovation of technology because every decision that is made is tied up with money; I’m not saying there is no innovation & progress in a free market economy; it just takes much longer. Today we have a lot of advanced technologies that already exist, yet are not being made available or viable for the majority of the consumers in the market. We have the resources to make every new car made to be electric if we wanted to, but car companies are impeded by the high costs of the materials required to build them. The same thing for renewable energies. So where is the progress here?

Conclusion:

If we had a RBE, humans would already be colonizing the moon, yet today most of the world is still worrying where to get their next meal. Con might argue that the governments are responsible for the slow growth of the market, and that free markets don’t really exist, which is true. Even if free markets did exist progress would still be slower than RBE since technological abundance is against a profit driven system.

ClassicRobert

Con

Claim #1: “in a resource based economy, there is no incentive to work.”

  • Pro addresses this with his point that “Solving problems is the real incentive,” so I’ll refute that.
  • “Solving problems is the real incentive”
    • While it's nice to claim that solving problems is the only incentive people need to be productive, that is simply not true for the majority of the population. In 2004, the X PRIZE Foundation offered a $10 million dollar award in a competition to Scaled Composites for crafting a commercial spacecraft. Prior to this competition, nobody was really working on making space travel publicly available. As a result of that monetary incentive, 25 teams of scientists and engineers worked aggressively to make space travel commercial, and the government no longer has a monopoly on space travel (1). I would also like to point out that I already addressed this in the previous round, where I showed how in an economy based purely on altruism, fewer people would be working on more problems, thus dramatically slowing progress. My opponent also chooses to conveniently ignore my point about how work in a free market would simply become more service based. This refers to the doctors, the lawyers, the deliverymen, and more who would still have jobs. In a RBE, there would be significantly less servicemen. This is because very few people are willing to work without benefit. Doctors and lawyers, for example, would still need to get the extra years of education just to be qualified for their jobs. Why would the majority of people still want become doctors or lawyers if they would get the exact same benefit from sitting around as they would get from getting the extra years upon years of schooling? Since a delivery man would be paid the exact same amount of resources in any situation and he won’t get tipped, he might as well take his time, rather than make the process quicker, safer for the resources, and more friendly. Don’t get me wrong; solving problems is an incentive, but only to a small amount of people. The majority needs something more substantial, like money.
  • “Money as an incentive is an illusion”
    • Pro states that since money has no intrinsic value, it is not an incentive. This is completely false. Though money has no intrinsic value, it has an implicit value. It allows people to purchase not only what is needed, but also what is wanted. It is a pathway to better living conditions. Pro said, “since food costs money in a free market, he works to get money.” With this statement, he conceded that money is a motivator. Since money has a high implicit value and is needed to acquire necessities (and wants), it is a major incentive.

Claim #2 “In a resource based economy, there is little to no human process.

  • “This...Neolithic Agricultural Revolution”
    • The Neolithic Agricultural Revolution led to people trading their art, music, pottery, and tools. While those goods and services were initially bartered, money has been consistently shown to increase the transaction velocity, thus improving the economy. Also (question for Pro), are people expected to just be content with what they have, or do they still trade in a RBE?
  • “Art would actually flourish”
    • Pro ignores my argument that in a RBE, you only get what is necessary, and since art materials aren't needed, instruments (which would need construction) aren't needed, and sporting equipment isn't needed, the artist or sportsmen would need to go out into nature, obtain the raw materials necessary to build what they need, and then build it themselves. This is a huge amount of work for something that satisfies few needs. Even if more people became artists, wouldn’t that be detrimental? After all, more people are still needed for practical work, and since art and sports are generally more enjoyable, why would someone do practical work?
  • "Lower opportunity cost"
    • Not true (why trade pure enjoyment through play or art for work?), but this point about progress is also counteracted by lower incentive to work and a lower number of practical workers.
  • “The free…tied up with money”
    • My opponent makes this claim, but doesn’t support it. I have shown that a monetary incentive encourages people to be more cost and time efficient.
  • “We have a lot of… are not being made available”
    • In regards to electric cars, that’s not bad. Electric car’s manufacturing process has twice the global warming potential as the process for making normal cars. In fact, when the initial CO2 cost is considered, an electric car driven 50,000 miles will have higher CO2 emissions than a similar-sized gas car. Also, since the majority of the initial CO2 cost is from the battery manufacturing, and they need to be replaced, electric cars are not “greener” (2).
  • “Where is the progress here?”
    • A free market solution for a greener world is a cap and trade system, where there is a set amount of emissions, and so companies have to buy and sell the emissions in order to maximize their utility. Environmental groups will be able to buy the emissions, and choose not to use them, thus lowering the amount of emissions. Companies are encouraged to lower their environmental impact, because if they do, they can sell their emissions. If they can use renewable energy, they have more emissions to sell.

Unrefuted or Conceded Arguments

  • Tech unemployment is workable in a free market because of service industry
  • Money is an incentive to work
  • Art materials
  • Money incentive extends resource longevity
  • Overall Economic wellbeing (wealth)
  • Less workers=Less progress
Conclusion
Pro didn't refute many of my points, and due to my refutations, has not shown a RBE to have more progress than a free market, that an RBE would be a better economic system for distributing wealth, that technological abundance is against a profit driven system (sidenote-to remove a PDS would be to change human nature), and that worrying about eating isn't a good motivator to be productive.

Thank you Pro, I look forward to your response.

Sources:

  1. http://tinyurl.com...
  2. http://tinyurl.com...

Debate Round No. 3
geothermal

Pro

I will disprove the “unrefuted arguments” which Con claims:

1."money is an incentiveWhile it's nice to claim that solving problems is the only incentive people need to be productive, that is simply not true for the majority of the population."
Con's example of the X Prize Foundation offering $10 million which incentivized scientists to build a commercial spacecraft is weak. Of course they would be incentivized by money because those scientists still need to pay their bills. I have already addressed this issue that the only reason why people would want money and why it has “implicit value”, as you stated, in the first place is simply because we currently live under a monetary system. If there were no price tag on things, people would naturally have no incentive for money.
“to remove a profit-driven system would be to change human nature.” Absolutely false. Money was never inherent in human nature to begin with. This logic is not hard to grasp and I’ll prove again why it’s valid. Con would 100% agree that no human being was born crying for money; babies cry for food, love, and nurture. When kids draw or build Legos, they’re motivated to see their imagination manifest without the incentive of $$. Legos are no different from building real cars, bridges, etc. The fact is that humans didn’t always live under a monetary system; in fact we initially lived in a resource-based system for thousands of years before civilizations existed. Nobody was paying cavemen money, but that didn’t stop them from making/innovating weapons and hunting. Tribes shared/lived together as a family and made the best out of the resources available to them. Yes barter existed, but bartering for other stuff wasn’t the main motivation for hunting, and tribes mostly used things they found and hunted for their own tribe. Even today there are places around the world where people live in a RBE & don’t use money. In the Philippines, my dad used to live in a remote province area where his family planted rice/fruits/raised pigs/fished and the whole community shared each other’s fruits of labor because there was more than enough for everyone. Yes I agree; in history money did help allow the standard of living to progress. Competition & free trade was useful because it was a fair way to distribute goods and services when scarcity still existed; Scarcity, as in a person wants something that someone else has. Money is just another technology invented by humans which served its purpose. Now that we are entering an age of information/technological/energy abundance, money’s purpose will gradually cease.

2. “Why would someone do practical work if arts and sports are more enjoyable?” What you consider enjoyable may not be enjoyable to someone else; it’s subjective. There are many people who find engineering/science enjoyable & do it as a hobby.

3. “a free market would simply become more service based.”
Yes jobs will be more service based in a free market, but once we’ve reached the point of tech. abundance, what incentive is there to work for money to buy things if we can just make most of the things we need at home with a 3D printer/nanotechnology? Machines would be doing ALL physical service/labor including mining raw materials, and human service jobs would all be STEM field jobs (Science/Technology/Engineering/Math). Providing service to earn money to buy another service is just inefficient; instead we would be much better off working together & collaborating our brains. Competition is good in other respects such as sports, but as a human race to solve our challenges, our real competition is the force of nature and time, not each other. “United we stand, divided we fall” is commonly used for a country, but why not for the whole world? If an alien civilization tried to invade the Earth, every person and nation would team up & forget about money and use every resource available necessary to defeat them.

4. “The Arts”
In a RBE not only would people get basic necessities, but have unlimited access to almost ANYTHING that can be created by technology. Sorry I didn’t state it in the original definition. Yes in a RBE you can still trade if you wish, but it’s not necessary.
Access vs. Ownership
Like a public library, everyone will have access to anything they need but without an expiration date. You don’t have to worry about stealing/crime or scarcity because 1. there is more than enough for everyone 2. People don’t want all the same things to use at the same time 3. People woudn’t want 50 BMW cars; they probably just need one at a time. This is a more efficient way of using resources than ownership in a free market. Today how many cars do you see parked in the streets & parking lots? Most cars are just sitting not being used for about 80% of the day, while someone out there without access to transportation could use it. In a RBE, much less cars are needed & would save a lot of resources that can be used for other things, thus better opportunity cost.

5. “an electric car driven 50,000 miles will have higher CO2 emissions than a similar-sized gas car”
Electric cars are not what cause higher CO2 emissions. CO2 emitting power plants that provide most of the electricity today are to blame. Ever heard of Tesla, the electric car company? They’re revolutionizing the auto industry and currently placing “supercharger stations” all over the country that use 100% solar energy to fuel their customer’s electric cars.

6. “Money incentive extends resource longevity.”
Totally false. In a free market, planned obsolescence of products is necessary to profit. Every year people buy new products (iphones, TVs, cars) without any significant improvements in features and design, while landfills pile up with “obsolete products”. In RBE products will be designed with the latest technology available.

Conclusion: An RBE efficiently uses energy & resources while a free market doesn’t.

Sources:
www.thevenusproject.com
www.teslamotors.com

ClassicRobert

Con

Money is an incentive



  • Pro is literally arguing my point here. He says, “Of course they would be incentivized by money because those scientists still need to pay their bills.” Because of its implicit value, money is important. If money were removed, as it would be in a RBE, a significant incentive for work and progress would be removed.


To remove a profit-driven system would be to change human nature



  • My opponent commits a straw man fallacy here. I never argued that money was inherent to human nature. I said that being profit-driven was inherent to human nature. Being profit-driven is working towards having a net positive for yourself rather than a net neutral or a net negative. In the last round, Pro argued that we should not be profit driven, so I refuted that.

  • While it may be true that humans haven’t always lived under a monetary system, it is also true that, in all of the situations provided, they would have been more prosperous with money and free market trade. When you say that nobody was paying cavemen money, that is true, but they were still bartering, and bartering is not nearly as effective as money. This is because of a “coincidence of wants.” In order to have a successful trade, both sides need to want the other persons good. Money, however, can be exchanged for just about any good, so therefore more purchases are made. Since money can be traded for almost anything, people work for it, and progress is made. The same is true with the tribe that was mentioned. In regards to the commune Pro’s father lived in, though people are content with how they were living, they would be better off with money and a market, which I’ve shown already.

  • The biggest problem with Pro’s argument is the statement “Competition & free trade…when scarcity still existed.” Scarcity will always exist, and therefore, needs to be dealt with. This is because humans have an unlimited number of wants and desires, and there are limited resources available. A free market run by supply and demand represents the best way to deal with scarcity, since S&D tells the producers how much should be produced to minimize the amount of people who want the good but cannot get it. Without supply and demand, it is guesswork. I would also like to add that Pro conceded the point when he said that "Competition & free trade was useful because it was a fair way to distribute goods and services when scarcity still existed," and since scarcity exists, competition and free trade is effective.


Why would someone do practical work if arts and sports are more enjoyable?



  • Yes, there are many people who find STEM jobs enjoyable, but not enough people. I’ve already shown that with money available, more people are inclined to do practical work. With money, more people are incentivized towards that, and if in the future those are the only jobs available, like Pro is arguing, then people will have to take those jobs for money. Arts and sports require less actual work, less education, and less time. When the same benefit is gained regardless, people will take the path of least resistance.


A free market would simply become more service based



  • My opponent states, “Providing service to earn money to buy another service is just inefficient.” How is that inefficient? That would assume that all services are the exact same. Giving one identical service to another person so you can get the exact same service could be inefficient, but giving up your services so you can get different services is perfectly acceptable.


Access vs. Ownership



  • First, thank you for the clarification. I would also like to add that I’ve already shown that when money is involved, it is more effective than bartering.

  • I fail to see how much less cars would be needed. People still need the transportation, and if everyone had access to that, then more people would access that. In regards to his reasons for not worrying about stealing/crime or scarcity, 1. I already addressed this. Scarcity will always exist because there is a limited amount of resources available, resources that can be produced, etc. 2. We have too large of a population for that to be determined, and for that to be true, much more would need to be produced. Supply and demand is the best way to determine how much should be produced, and 3. More people would have access to cars, so more people would take advantage of that. Also, if you are going to use statistics, please cite them.


Electric Cars



  • To only consider the car’s CO2 emissions would be foolish. When speaking about economies and environments, to not have a cost/benefit analysis would be foolish. To not examine both the implicit and explicit costs would be to short change society. While the car itself doesn’t produce more CO2 emissions, the total process, including the manufacturing, does.


Money incentive extends resource longevity



  • This doesn’t exactly sound different from how it would be in a free market. When you say that products will be designed, and I assume distributed, with the latest technology available, that either means that new technology will be distributed when technological advances are made, which is identical to the free market description you gave, or progress is halted at “the latest technology available.”


Unrefuted or Conceded Arguments



  • Positions that need extra training

  • It would be detrimental to have less practical workers

  • There would be less people working towards progress

  • Money is a valuable incentive, and to remove it would be detrimental.

  • Being profit-driven is a part of human nature (he argued against being money driven)

  • If I missed any more, I’m sure the voters will notice.

  • More progress is attained from a free market, and a RBE dramatically slows progress.


In conclusion, my opponent still has not refuted many of my points, and his own refutations fail. A free market economy is better than a RBE, and my opponent has not fulfilled his burden of proof. I look forward to his response.

Debate Round No. 4
geothermal

Pro

Money as an incentive: In a RBE money’s “implicit value” does not apply.
1. Part of true human incentive is our curiosity. This has been true ever since we were kids. Kids constantly want to explore and learn things without being offered $$$; Heck they don’t even know or use money until a certain age. Incentive for money isn't inborn. It is taught to us as we grow older in the monetary system.
2. $$$ is just a technology created by human beings & was never in nature to begin with.

Competition/trade: Yes free trade was beneficial in the past because 1. Advanced technologies today did not exist before. 2. The world wasn’t a global economy. It was the "survival of the fittest" & "divide and conquer". A RBE wouldn’t have been a good system during that time. In an age of information/technology/energy abundance, exchanging for other stuff will no longer be necessary since someone can just as easily obtain/access what another person has.

“Being profit driven was inherent to human nature”, not money.
Thanks for clearing it up & yes I agree we are all “profit-driven” beings, & want to have a net positive/personal gain for ourselves. Though, personal gain doesn’t necessarily only imply material things, but also things that really matter to us as human beings such as receiving love & companionship from family/friends, free time, and honing talents. Humans are social beings and cannot live only to profit for themselves. “No man is an island.” You can have all the things in the world but if you’re the only person left, what good do all those things do? You have no one to share/enjoy it with which won’t give you happiness. Humans are only as “profit-driven” for things as much as they have people to enjoy it with. Money can be exchanged for any physical things but it can’t buy true friendship & love. Today a lot of women marry rich men for their money, which is expected in a monetary system. In a RBE people will inherently have better moral values such as loving & respecting other people for who they are, rather than how much money or things they have.

Electric Cars:
Con is ignoring the fact that implementing renewable energy will essentially eliminate CO2 emissions because it’s clear that no business can profit from free abundant renewable source of energy. Manufacturing electric cars will be CO2 free. Today, financial cost is why renewable energies have been struggling to be implemented & also since there’s less profit in it in the long run. The question shouldn’t be “Do we have the money?”, but rather “DO WE HAVE THE RESOURCES?” The answer is YES. Today the military industry uses up so much resources to build weapons, drones, WOMD, etc. which all their purpose are to end lives. Imagine how much better our world would be if we used all those resources for creation instead of destruction. Today we are using technology many for the wrong purposes since it’s profitable.

Access Vs. Ownership – Relatively, we wouldn’t need as much cars because let’s say people work 8 hours a day. Those 8 hours you are not using your car, someone else could have been using it; it’s called sharing and it’s efficiently making the most out of available resource. This can apply to almost any item, not just cars. It saves resources from being wasted because stuff are not just sitting around on a shelf/garage/parking lot, but being used; that’s what it was made for. Supplies will be efficiently shared so it will be used all the time & nothing is wasted. If the demand grows for certain items, then computer algorithms will intelligently calculate how much more we need to make based on the current data.

1. Scarcity: Yes scarcity will always exist since we live in a finite planet, but a RBE significantly reduces this issue by efficiently & intelligently managing the Earth’s resources (supply) with technology & renewable energy, and determining the current population demand. Whether RBE or Free Market, people will always have unlimited wants, BUT people only have so much capacity & obviously don’t have enough time to spend with all their unlimited wants. Ex: You can’t ride 10 ars simultaneously. You can’t play guitar while playing Xbox while driving...you get my point? While we may have unlimited wants we can only focus on one or two activities at a time; thus you would only use limited amount of items at a certain time. But a flaw of a free market is that consumers have to perpetually buy & consume products even if there isn't enough respurces available. We cannot have exponential monetary economic growth in a finite resource planet.

2. “We have too large of a population for that to be determined, and for that to be true, much more would need to be produced.” An RBE would take a survey of every person's realistic demand with the help of computers, internet, and data management systems (technology, it’s amazing isn’t it). Again technology will keep track of who wants to use which items at what time & their current availability. Of course it’s not fixed but computers adjust to live data & updates automatically. This is part of what’s called “The Internet of Things”.

3. “Supply and demand is the best way to determine how much should be produced”
Supply & Demand still also applies in a RBE; the population cannot live above the aggregate resources available. As I have said before, technology keeps track of the total supply and demands.

CONCLUSION: Significantly more progress in a RBE than free market.
-100% renewable energy
-latest tech./things will be built to last for as long as possible, unlike planned obsolescence in a Free Market.
-smart, efficient management/distribution of resources.
-Eliminates hunger/diseases/violence/crime.
-Human potential & creativity is unleashed with the liberation from boring daily meaningless jobs.

Sources:

RBE vs. Libertarianism: http://tinyurl.com...

Disruptive tech.: http://www.mckinsey.com...

ClassicRobert

Con


Money as an incentive:



  • My opponent seems to be operating under the false assumption that if one incentive were removed, other incentives would compensate. This is simply not true. If money were removed, than an extra incentive would be removed, leaving less total incentive to work and make progress.

  • “Money is just a technology created by human beings & was never in nature to begin with”

    • He states this as though it is a bad thing. By that logic, the machinery that Pro likes to say would essentially handle everything for the world that is made by humans (and eventually by other machines) is a bad thing, so Pro is contradicting himself.




Competition/trade



  • “Advanced technologies today did not exist before

    • Here my opponent totally switches his argument from switching to a RBE in the distant future to switching today. A large part of his arguments has relied on the idea that technology will take over all physical labor. However, the technology of today is nowhere near ready to take over all physical labor.



  • “The world wasn’t a global economy.”

    • It is now, and yet market based economies are still effective means of allocating resources, and Pro hasn’t proven his assertion that global economies don’t work with free markets.




“Being profit driven was inherent to human nature”, not money



  • “Yes I agree we are all ‘profit-driven’ beings”

    • Though my opponent was correct that personal gain doesn’t necessarily imply material things, material things are a personal gain. The desire for “love & companionship from family/friends, free time, and honing talents” is already inherent to humans, so material gains are an extra, added incentive.



  • “Humans are social…only to profit for themselves.”

    • The opposite is literally the entire theory behind capitalism and free markets (1). When people work in their own self-interest, this leads to overall better allocation of resources.



  • “In a RBE people will inherently have better moral values”

    • Pro does not justify this claim, and therefore, it is a bare assertion. Also, as morality is subjective, it is difficult to claim one set of moral values to be better than another.




Electric Cars



  • “Con is ignoring the fact…eliminate CO2 emissions”

    • I didn’t ignore that “fact.” That “fact” was not stated previously in the debate. I have no responsibility to respond to a point that hasn’t been made. That being said, this wave of the magic wand is not necessarily a good thing. Renewable energies like solar power and wind power are not strong enough to actually be used in a manufacturing process where heat is necessary to bend the metal and power intensely heavy machinery. To use renewable energies would be to drastically slow the production process, and the supply could not possibly keep up with the demand.



  • “Military industry…”

    • It remains unproven that there would be less war in a global RBE.




Access vs. Ownership



  • “Those 8 hours…”

    • Firstly, I’ve already shown that people lack the incentive to work 8 hours each day in a RBE. However, this creates the issue of time efficiency. How would one make sure that the cars are immediately sent to those who need the cars when the cars are needed? This would be an impossible feat to accomplish. The same goes with his other examples. It is an invasion of privacy, and an impossible task, to be constantly checking up on the people to determine what goods need to be transported from here to there, and is hugely time inefficient.



  • “We cannot have exponential monetary economic growth in a finite resource planet.”

    • This is a bare assertion. Also, with Pro’s statement about a flaw of a free market, he ignores the fact that people still sell goods, so the goods are still redistributed.




Population



  • “Technology will keep track…”

    • I’ve already pointed out the error in this system, which is the actual transportation of goods to people when they need it so everybody is happy, which is impossible. Also, for the technology to keep track of all that, it would need a complete, invasive perspective into people’s lives. If you think that the NSA is invading our privacy (2), then this is that on a whole new level.




Supply and demand



  • I don’t need to explain the issues with the supply and demand system of a RBE again.


Conclusion



  • Significantly more progress in a RBE than free market”- Negated, there is less total incentive to make progress.

  • “100% renewable energy”- I’ve shown the inefficiency here to produce what is needed.

  • “Latest tech…unlike planned obsolescence in a Free Market”-Negated, Pro did not respond my refutation in Round 4

  • “smart, efficient management/distribution of resources.Negated, this represents incredible time inefficiencies and invasion of privacy.

  • “Eliminates hunger/diseases/violence/crime.”-Pro did not justify this claim anywhere in the debate. This is a bare assertion.

  • “Human potential…boring daily meaningless jobs”-Pro himself admitted in his very first argument that this technological unemployment is also shown in a free market, so this consequence would also be shown in a free market. This does not prove that a RBE is better than a free market, as is his burden of proof to do


Unrefuted Arguments



  • Supply and Demand will ask for more STEM and service workers regardless, but a free market, with its monetary incentive, encourages more workers.

  • It would be detrimental to have less practical workers.

  • Money is a valuable incentive, and removing it leaves less total incentive.

  • People will take the path of least resistance.

  • All arguments about service market.

  • Overall higher resource cost in RBE.

  • If there are any more, the voters will notice.


In conclusion, Pro has not fulfilled his burden of proof to show that a RBE is better than a free market, and I have shown the money in a free market to be important, and the way it handles supply and demand to be superior, among other things. Thank you to Pro for a good debate, and thanks to the readers for their time.



Sources:



  1. http://tinyurl.com...

  2. http://tinyurl.com...




Debate Round No. 5
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Sheepy 8 months ago
Sheepy
"While it's nice to claim that solving problems is the only incentive people need to be productive, that is simply not true for the majority of the population."

Con is incorrect

Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us

https://www.youtube.com...
Posted by ClassicRobert 3 years ago
ClassicRobert
Quatermass, if you would want to debate whether or not a resource based economy should be implemented, I'd be willing to do so in the January-February area.
Posted by Quatermass 3 years ago
Quatermass
A resource-based economy does work, but I don't think the Pro fully understands it enough!
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
@geothermal:

Thanks for your constructive feedback on my RFD. On your comments:

"An Resource based Economy holistically measures personal gain/success/happiness both through physical necessities/wants, and having peaceful social relationships among human beings."

...I did not see how your RBE would more efficiently measure "personal gain/success/happiness" through "physical necessities/wants" than the current free market system.

I also agree with you that the free market system does not address "peaceful social relationships among human beings"...this is why we have government regulation over the free market. Given that the RBE could not more efficiently provide for material needs, and that such material needs are a vital foundation for these relational needs, I found the resolution to be negated.
Posted by DeFool 3 years ago
DeFool
In R2, Pro begins his argument by attacking the flaws of a free market system. He suggests that technological unemployment will create sweeping changes, and supports this thesis with examples. Con rebuts by challenging these examples. He then builds his case by revealing an argument that I interpret as "Money is a resource, and therefore should rightfully be exploited." He argues that the use of currency simplifies a potentially very complex system, and motivates participants.

Pro responds by presenting his clearest argument, which I interpret as "Money isn"t the direct incentive, solving problems is." I felt that his supporting premises for this argument were solid, but in R3 Con presents convincing examples that prove that money remains important in its own right.

I felt that, through the course of this debate, there was a tendency to argue against cartoonish caricatures rather than the arguments presented. Other than this, I felt that the competitors were both competent enough to clearly present the cases that they each wanted to have evaluated. I was convinced of Con"s case, and scored accordingly.
Posted by ClassicRobert 3 years ago
ClassicRobert
This was a great debate. Thanks Geo.
Posted by geothermal 3 years ago
geothermal
To wrichcirw: I never said food, water, shelter was not important. You need BOTH physical necessities and human love/acceptance with others. Holistically you cannot live without both. Yes technically you can live ONLY with food, water, shelter, but you would be miserable without having others around you. My point is that in a Free Market, personal gain and success is only measured with material things, or the consumption and acquiring of physical things and services. BUT It doesn't measure other standards such as the strength of relationship with other people (family/friends/community), which is just as significantly important as getting food so you don't physically die. It also doesn't measure self-improvement such as honing skills and talents. These are all important too which affects personal gain and happiness. An Resource based Economy holistically measures personal gain/success/happiness both through physical necessities/wants, and having peaceful social relationships among human beings.
Posted by geothermal 3 years ago
geothermal
Thank you ClassicRobert for a good debate. You did a great job of refuting my arguments. I have learned a lot in my first debate and realized some of the weaknesses of my arguments. For me it's not about winning or losing but just to get my ideas out there for people to think about. Thanks again bro your an awesome debater!
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
12) PRO: "Yes scarcity will always exist since we live in a finite planet, but a RBE significantly reduces this issue by efficiently & intelligently managing the Earth"s resources (supply) with technology & renewable energy..."

How would PRO incentivize technology research? Through an emotional appeal to public good?

13) PRO: "Supply & Demand still also applies in a RBE; the population cannot live above the aggregate resources available. As I have said before, technology keeps track of the total supply and demands."

I don't even know what this means.

I skimmed CON's round #4 and wholly ignored his round #5. The victor was clear after round #2...I read all of PRO's arguments to confirm this, and my mind has not changed on this matter.

---

CONCLUSION:

PRO's arguments seemed to boil down to the primacy of barter over monetary exchange, and how public good alone would be able to overcome scarcity.

Most of PRO's arguments were absolutely absurd. I disagree with CON on several aspects of the points he brought up, but I acknowledge that CON connected them to the resolution, whereas this was not evident in PRO's arguments until much later in the debate. CON also trivially countered and dismissed PRO's main points, which was all that was required for such absurd arguments.

There's not much more to say. This was a terrible debate. Points made by PRO about CO2 emissions and renewable energy were built on such an absolutely absurd economic foundation (which was the actual point of the debate) that they became nothing more than lip gloss on a pig...that doesn't mean I'll take it out to dinner and a movie.

Arguments and S&G to CON, S&G because of the fact that PRO spent so many words arguing points that were baseless to begin with. I would award 7 points to CON for arguments if I could.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
7) PRO: "The fact is that humans didn"t always live under a monetary system; in fact we initially lived in a resource-based system for thousands of years before civilizations existed."

CON already elaborated how a monetary system was an improvement over a barter system.

8) PRO: "Competition & free trade was useful because it was a fair way to distribute goods and services when scarcity still existed..."

Money in such a system facilitates trade. If a caveman with spears wanted apples, but the guy with apples only wanted tulips, the caveman would have to go find a guy with tulips, who may not want any of his spears...with money, they can just trade with money and forget all this ridiculously inefficient bartering, or "RBE".

9) I want to go back to something PRO said: "The main reason Steve Jobs developed the iPod and iPhone was not because he was after the profits, but because he wanted to revolutionize the way we listened to music and the way we communicate and interact with our phones; the money was just secondary."

PRO fails to substantiate this point. To do so, he'd have to quote Jobs saying something along these lines, or show how Jobs would have continued his work without monetary incentive. Looking at AAPL's stock price promptly makes this claim prima facie absurd.

10) PRO: "Kids constantly want to explore and learn things without being offered $$$; Heck they don"t even know or use money until a certain age. Incentive for money isn't inborn."

PRO's argument essentially equates "progress" to a child's conception of the world. Another prima facie absurd point. Children aren't potty trained either, should we learn not to wipe?

11) PRO: "Though, personal gain doesn't necessarily only imply material things..."

I challenge PRO to live without food, water, or shelter for a month. Again, prima facie absurd.

(con't and conclusion)
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 3 years ago
RoyLatham
geothermalClassicRobertTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro didn't relate his statements to his claims, and didn't provide evidence to prove his statements. Pro has the burden of proof, and with so radical a resolution the evidence would have to substantial -- on the order of proving the earth is really flat despite evidence to the contrary. The idea that humans were better off before civilization is, well, radical. Refuting such ideas is not as easy as it seems, because there is very little common ground to work from. Con summary of unrefuted arguments he presented in his last round is accurate.
Vote Placed by DeFool 3 years ago
DeFool
geothermalClassicRobertTied
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Reasons for voting decision: See comments. I did not score for sourcing.
Vote Placed by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
geothermalClassicRobertTied
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Reasons for voting decision: see comments
Vote Placed by Rational_Thinker9119 3 years ago
Rational_Thinker9119
geothermalClassicRobertTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con showed that money is an incentive, and that people don't want to work for free.