The Instigator
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Pro (for)
Losing
21 Points
The Contender
RoyLatham
Con (against)
Winning
34 Points

A debate on a plan

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/28/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,823 times Debate No: 5562
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
Votes (9)

 

LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

Okay, so what will happen is I will post a plan, that is a solution to a modern problem. My opponent will attack the plan, and try to disprove it. Here's my plan to eliminate poverty.

Step One: Education
Education is the most important tool to escape poverty. Obviously we must provide a higher quality education for impoverished children. UNICEF ranked the United States' educational system 22nd out of 30 developed nations. That is clearly failure. The school system is choked by bureaucracy and standardization. There is no accountability for schools. If they fail, they aren't hurt, if they succeed, they aren't rewarded. The solution is clear, a private school voucher system will improve education. A voucher system would create a market-style school system, if a public school fails, students zoned for it will go to private schools. In a way this competition already exists, but not to its full extent. In many cities the schools are failing. This is for a variety of reasons, most of which stem from the socialist model, but those who can afford to go to private schools go to private schools. Poorer children are left in the failing schools. They have no where to go. As long as the school has a captive student body, it has little incentive to improve, and the children who have to go there are left with a very poor quality education. Also, many low income students are stuck in bad schools, schools described by the Chicago Tribune as "An institutionalized case of child neglect." If these schools are failing, children need a way out. Vouchers provide a way out. Education used to be a child's ticket out of poverty, but now it is what keeps them impoverished. In Colombia, a nation with a fairly similar educational system, a voucher program was developed. Unfortunately, as Colombia is a poor nation, only 50% of those eligible for vouchers could get a voucher. Luckily for us, this allows us to compare the success of the vouchers to the traditional system. The Brookings Institution performed a study of this program and it found that there was an increase among voucher winners in those taking college entrance exams, voucher winners being about 9% more likely to do so, a 5-7% increase in high school graduation among winners, and winners were much less likely to fail a grade. The authors of the study said "On balance, our results suggest a substantial gain in both high school graduation rates and
achievement as a result of the voucher program. Although the benefits of achievement gains per se are hard to quantify, there is a substantial economic return to high school graduation in Colombia." Also, in 1994, a conservative government in Sweden made a voucher system that was so successful that when the liberals took over, politically they could not end the system. The world has tried vouchers, and they have been a wild success. We need the best for our children. Vouchers have proven that they work best. Also the problem with public schools is not money. Public school systems spend an average of about $10000 on every student, whereas private schools spend substantially less. It is not money, it is how the money is spent, and private schools that by nature are forced to compete have shown they can spend the money better, it is better to let people make the choice to instill competition, than it is to consign people to failing schools that seem broken beyond repair. Money is not the issue. We save money with vouchers, and we get a much more educated populace.

Step Two: Eliminating the Ghetto
Ghettos place a lot of desperate people in one place. This leads to gang violence, drug abuse and other problems. The solution to that problem is clear. We must eliminate the ghetto. This can be easily done. The answer is to spread low income housing. If we put one low income household on every block, the low income families would be spread out, and would also be placed in areas that have affluent families ready to help out. Spreading them out eliminates urban slums, which increases urban real estate value, and it reduces gang violence by eliminating the need for a gang. Also, affluent neighborhoods tend to have access to better public services, which would also improve the quality of life for low income families.

Step Three: Increasing Employment Opportunities
The Brookings Institution writes "The decentralizing U.S. economy has, in many metropolitan areas, led to a spatial mismatch between where welfare recipients live and where jobs are available. In Milwaukee, for instance, nearly 90 percent of full-time entry-level job openings in May 2000 were located in the suburban/exurban parts of the metropolitan area. Only 4 percent of full-time and part-time
entry-level job openings were located in the central Milwaukee neighborhoods where most W-2 (Wisconsin's welfare reform program) participants lived. An October 2001 survey showed that there were only 2,700 full- and part-time jobs available in central city Milwaukee for the 13,100 persons actively seeking work there." This problem has a number of solutions necessary. One important solution is the elimination of the ghetto, and the movement of low income families from the city to the suburbs. Also, welfare programs must focus on providing employment. This entails providing a car. Most low income families do not have an automobile. This prevents them from getting jobs far away from their residence. Providing an automobile would drastically increase employment.
RoyLatham

Con

Proponent did not define poverty. I assume it is the category of people in the United States living in households having incomes below the official poverty levels set by the Government.

1. Proponent asserts that "education is the most important tool to escape poverty." He offers no proof of that assertion. India inherited a strong educational system from the British. When India achieved independence, however, high education levels did not of itself bring prosperity. Many highly trained people were grossly underemployed for decades, until relatively recent times. I agree that education is some factor in escaping poverty, but there no proof it is the determining factor.

2. I will stipulate that a voucher system would somewhat improve the education of poor people, however no proof is offered that the improvement would be so significant as to end poverty. The data cited showing a 5%-7% improvement in college admission rates in Colombia, but no data was presented that educational opportunities in Colombia are comparable to the United States. If there are more poor schools, we would expect vouchers to work better than if most schools are adequate to start with. Even if 5-7% improvements in admissions of poor people were achieved in the US, proponent offers no calculation showing it would have a significant impact. Poverty rates in the U.S. run around 12%, so at the very best it might produce a reduction to 11.2%.

3. Having improved educational opportunities does not mean that people will take advantage of them. Current educational opportunities in the U.S. are more than adequate to obtain whatever advantage education provides in escaping poverty. This is demonstrated by immigrants from Southeast Asia and Cuba who arrived in the US with virtually nothing, who could not speak English, and who faced discrimination. They nonetheless successfully took advantage of the educational opportunities here and escaped poverty within one generation. They did so without vouchers. The main reason for success was cultural pressure by their parents and their communities to become educated, not the quality of educational opportunities available.

4. It is not possible to put low income people on every block without amending the Constitution to permit forced relocation. We should not undertake such a dramatic violation of traditional civil rights.

5. The government currently has a program ("Section 8") that provides rent subsidies wherever people choose to live and can get housing at reasonable costs. Thus insofar as reasonable economic incentives can be used to encourage relocation, that has already been in place for decades and poverty has not ended. It would be impractical to relocate people to Beverly Hills.

6. "increasing employment opportunities" is not a plan, it is a goal. Proponent mainly repeats what I covered in (4) and (5).

7. The Welfare Reform Act passed during the Clinton Administration strengthened the requirements that welfare recipients must actively seek work in order to receive welfare benefits. This was successful in substantially reducing welfare rolls. This demonstrates that while there are certainly places where jobs are unavailable, that there is also a segment that is not motivated to get a job. Proponent claims to eliminate poverty, but does not treat the unmotivated segment in any way.

8. The assertion that most poor people do not have cars is false. Just under 75% of poor households own cars and 30% own two cars. http://www.heritage.org... Of those who do not own cars, some live in cities where public transportation is a better way to get around. I grant that there are some poor people who do not have cars who could benefit from having a car, but Proponent has made no argument as to what that number is, or why it would have a substantial effect on eliminating poverty.

9. Proponent ignores the factor of social mobility in creating and removing people from poverty. According to Charles and Hurst:

" Age adjusted parental wealth, by itself, explains less than ten percent of the variation in age adjusted child wealth. Furthermore, twenty percent of parents in the lowest quintile of the parent's wealth distribution have children who are
able to break away from their parents low wealth status and end up in the top two quintiles of the child's wealth distribution. Similarly, one quarter of the parents in the highest wealth quintile have children whose wealth places them in the lowest two quintiles of the child's wealth distribution."
http://faculty.chicagogsb.edu...

Proponents arguments assume that people are generally trapped in poverty for generations, so that once they escape the poverty problem is solved. That is not true. There is mobility, and nothing Proponent espouses addresses that.

10. People fall into drug addiction, alcoholism, and plain nasty habits that make them end up in poverty. Supreme Court decisions have eliminated the power of the government to provide mandatory treatment of the mentally ill, so long as the mentally ill persons are not a danger to themselves or others. These people can be helped, but Proponent's plan does nothing to address this entire class of poor people.

11. Proponent ignores cultural factors that affect poverty. High motivation to get an education and work hard is far more important than the minor remedies proposed. This is born out by the success of recent immigrants from Asia and other places, where they came from a highly motivated culture. It's also true to large extent of Hispanic immigrants. Poverty cannot be eliminated unless everyone is highly motivated to succeed.

Proponent's plan fails because he has ignored the major causes of poverty, and has made no showing that what he proposes would substantially reduce poverty, let alone eliminate it.
Debate Round No. 1
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

1. The reason I argue that education is essential is because looking at the education of people not below the poverty line, you see a vast number with a college education. Also, the amount of jobs available to college-educated people are certainly more numerous than those offered to high school graduates.

2. Here's some US data: "The Institute of Education Sciences (IES)study reported that nearly 90 percent of all students showed academic gains in reading. The IES also reported last year that there was an increase in math scores among the students. This program has helped the students gain the equivalent of two to four extra months of learning." That's in reference to the Washington DC voucher program, " And, Milwaukee, the country's oldest voucher system has led to success stories like this: "Messmer Catholic High School in Milwaukee is a voucher success story. Messmer is funded at the 80% level by voucher students. What are the statistics? The daily attendance rate is 95% and 90% of the students go on to a four-year college. This data is holding true every year. This does not include the students that go on to 2-year colleges."

3. That's not always true. Immigrants tend not to settle in the "bad areas" of cities, and the areas they end up in tend to have slightly better schools. And, if they do end up in a bad school, they are no more likely to escape poverty than someone whose family has been here since 1608.

4. We are not forcing them, we are simply moving where we build Section 8 housing. As of now, we build "projects" in the inner city. If we built Section 8 only in the suburbs, and in spread out areas, we wouldn't get ghettos.

5. Section 8 housing does not let people live wherever they choose to live, it lets them live in areas that are specially designated for Section 8 housing, and that creates ghettos.

6. It's a goal, but so is eliminating the ghetto, and improving education.

7. There will always be those unmotivated people. It is impossible to eliminate them. By poverty I meant widespread poverty, certainly some people will be lazy, unlucky, or stupid. I CANNOT treat them in any way.

8. "Evelyn Blumenberg, a professor of urban planning at UCLA, found that car-driving residents of the Watts section of Los Angeles have access to an astounding 59 times as many jobs as their neighbors dependent on public transit. Even more isolated are the car-less low-income families that now live in the suburbs—nearly half of all metropolitan poor."
-Brookings Insitution

Also "The lack of a car limits opportunities for America's poor in other ways too. It's never easy to be a working single parent, but it's infinitely harder without a car. When you spend three hours a day commuting to work by bus and train, then have to buy groceries and pick up your kids, there isn't much time for anything else—like helping with homework or after-school activities, taking yourself or your family to the doctor when necessary, or even finding a partner to help share the load. And lack of access to a car limits your housing options, making it even harder to move into safer neighborhoods, or ones with better schools."
-Brookings Institution

And..."But even for low- and middle-income workers who do own cars, purchase and operating costs take a significant bite out of their income—more than 20 percent of all household expenditures go for transportation, second only to housing. For the vast majority of households, those costs aren't optional—cars represent a fixed and non-negotiable expense. And every time the price of gas increases, it is in effect a tax on work."
-Brookings Institution

9. Sure, there is some mobility, but not when you have a POS education, and everyone around you is miserable, on drugs, and will probably get killed by an angry gang member. Also, people will become impoverished, of course, that is unpreventable. I simply mean that one has to be able to easily escape poverty, and that is certainly not the case now, especially in inner city areas.

10. Again, no plan can address every problem, every situation. I just need to ensure mobility for all persons.

11. And a quality education helps people succeed. And again, I cannot force everyone to be motivated, no one can. I am creating as much mobility as possible.

Vote Pro.
RoyLatham

Con

1. Does increasing education eliminate poverty or does eliminating poverty increase education? Proponent showed only a correlation, not cause and effect. I gave the example of India, in which high educational levels did not eliminate, or even dramatically reduce, poverty. What dramatically reduced poverty in India was ending their ill-advised experiment in democratic socialism. Nonetheless, poverty still remains in India despite a good educational system. Another example is the economy of the Soviet Union, which crashed despite a good educational system.

The U.S. has both a free economy and a good educational system, but poverty remains. I grant that further improvements in education will make some improvement in reducing poverty, but the statistics Proponent offered showed that the probable improvement is at most 7%. Note also that the very high mobility also indicates that the educational system is not a major bar to moving out of poverty. However good or bad the education system, people move into and out of poverty in the US in one or two generations. The education system does not change that rapidly, so the main factors must lie outside of education.

2. The data Proponent offers for the efficacy of vouchers is for a single Catholic school in Milwaukee, which was not even established to being attended predominantly by poor people. If highly motivated people have access to a better education system, I grant that they will get a better education. However, highly motivated people will escape poverty for the most part anyway. Proponent must demonstrate that improved education alone, independent of other factors, substantially reduces poverty on a statistical basis.

3. Proponent makes an assertion that immigrants who do not have access to superior schools will generally not escape poverty. He offers no proof whatsoever of that assertion. Proponent has granted that poor immigrants tend to settle in poor areas, that those areas tend to have poor schools, and that nonetheless the immigrants quickly escape poverty. Therefore he has granted all the generalities which contradict his specific assertion. I grant that better schools would provide marginal help, but there is no showing that is the key factor and Proponent has in effect granted that it is not.

4. Most Section 8 housing is not built by the government, it is provided by the free market. The government provides rent subsides to the owners of the housing to make it affordable. Proponent has not shown that the free market has failed to provide sufficient Section 8 housing outside of inner cities, which he calls "ghettos." He assumes that to be true, and he proposes a government building program to provide more housing outside of cites. Housing outside of inner cities is in fact in oversupply, so how is building more of it going to help anything? The fact is that people could always relocate if they chose to, they simple choose not to. The reasons they choose not to include ties to family, community, and culture. Those who are in poverty due to problems with mental illness, drug addiction, alcoholism, and inappropriate social values get better services in the central cities that elsewhere, so they will not be inclined to move.

5. Proponent asserts that "Section 8 housing does not let people live wherever they choose to live, it lets them live in areas that are specially designated for Section 8 housing, and that creates ghettos." This is false. Section 8 is a rent subsidy program that provides payment to private landlords to accommodate low income renters. It operates throughout the United States, and is as available in rural New Mexico as it is in urban Detroit. It is a voucher program. I remind Proponent of the virtues of voucher programs:

"Section 8, or the Housing Choice Voucher Program, is a Federal housing program which provides housing assistance to low-income renters and homeowners. This assistance comes in the form of rental subsidies, limiting the monthly rent payment of the assistance recipient." http://www.affordablehousingonline.com...

6. Proponent grants that goals are not plans. Therefore it is not an argument in favor of his plan.

7. Proponent claimed his plan would eliminate poverty. He now grants that a certain part of poverty cannot be eliminated. This concedes that his plan will not work. The best he can do is to argue that poverty that is a result of mental illness, drug addiction, alcoholism, and inappropriate social values (those values that lead to an unwillingness to work hard) are an insignificant part of total poverty. What statistics are there to prove that?

The notion is clearly contradicted by the rapid escape from poverty of penniless immigrants who arrive in the US with very high motivation. A prime example are the middle class people expelled from Cuba by Castro, who have very rapidly succeeded in Florida. Refugees from rural Vietnam and Cambodia are another good example. In a society like the US that has many opportunities, motivation is the primary factor for success. This is true even if the opportunities are imperfect.

I am not denying that families end in poverty for other reasons, such as personal disasters including illness and accidents. I think that the government should help such people. However, the help they need has nothing to do with the "eliminate poverty plan" offered here. Those people simply need money.

8. Professor Blumberg cites only the statistic that half the metropolitan poor live in suburbs. He gives no statistic on how many lack cars. We know that overall 75% of the poor have cars. To evaluate the effectiveness of providing cars we need to know how many people in poverty simultaneously (1) lack cars, (2) could use cars more effectively than public transportation, (3) are not disabled in such a way that they cannot drive, and (4) and are motivated to use a car to get a job. The upper limit is the 25% who lack cars. So what is the real number? Is it 5%? Proponent has made no argument that his plan would have a substantial effect.

The problem of taking time to commute to work is not solved by having a car. Particularly in urban areas, commuting by car can take longer than commuting by mass transit.

I am not arguing it wouldn't help some small percentage. So would cell phones and computers. For the poor who are motivated, the best method is to give those people money and let them spend it as they see fit. Giving people money, however, is not part of Proponents plan. This indicates that Proponent does not trust the poor to spend it correctly, an assumption which is often correct. This in turn acknowledges that the problem is primarily a social one, not something he addresses.

9. Proponent reasserts that his goal is to end poverty, but makes no argument that his plan will accomplish that goal.

10. Proponent grants that his plan will not end poverty. He makes no argument that it would even have a substantial impact. Therefore the proposition fails.

11. Proponent grants that his plan will not end poverty. He makes no argument that it would even have a substantial impact. Therefore the proposition fails.
Debate Round No. 2
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

"1. Does increasing education eliminate poverty or does eliminating poverty increase education? Proponent showed only a correlation, not cause and effect. I gave the example of India, in which high educational levels did not eliminate, or even dramatically reduce, poverty. What dramatically reduced poverty in India was ending their ill-advised experiment in democratic socialism. Nonetheless, poverty still remains in India despite a good educational system. Another example is the economy of the Soviet Union, which crashed despite a good educational system."

Certainly education causes wealth. Have you ever compared the salary of the cashier at McDonald's to a physician's? Education improves the job you can get.

"The U.S. has both a free economy and a good educational system, but poverty remains. I grant that further improvements in education will make some improvement in reducing poverty, but the statistics Proponent offered showed that the probable improvement is at most 7%. Note also that the very high mobility also indicates that the educational system is not a major bar to moving out of poverty. However good or bad the education system, people move into and out of poverty in the US in one or two generations. The education system does not change that rapidly, so the main factors must lie outside of education."

Our education was ranked by UNESCO as 22 in the world. That's not that great. Anyways, the modern problems of poverty tend to be relegated now to areas with horrible education (inner cities), and the mobility in those areas is much less present.

"The data Proponent offers for the efficacy of vouchers is for a single Catholic school in Milwaukee, which was not even established to being attended predominantly by poor people. If highly motivated people have access to a better education system, I grant that they will get a better education. However, highly motivated people will escape poverty for the most part anyway. Proponent must demonstrate that improved education alone, independent of other factors, substantially reduces poverty on a statistical basis."

First, it was established as being attended by poor students (85% of tuition from vouchers) and was chosen as a microcosm and a feel-good story. And furthermore, we want everyone to have an opportunity to climb the social ladder, we want the only slightly motivated people to be able to succeed as well.

"The data Proponent offers for the efficacy of vouchers is for a single Catholic school in Milwaukee, which was not even established to being attended predominantly by poor people. If highly motivated people have access to a better education system, I grant that they will get a better education. However, highly motivated people will escape poverty for the most part anyway. Proponent must demonstrate that improved education alone, independent of other factors, substantially reduces poverty on a statistical basis."

You accuse me of not providing statistics? I challenge you to do the same, you made the statement, prove it.

"Most Section 8 housing is not built by the government, it is provided by the free market. The government provides rent subsides to the owners of the housing to make it affordable. Proponent has not shown that the free market has failed to provide sufficient Section 8 housing outside of inner cities, which he calls 'ghettos.' He assumes that to be true, and he proposes a government building program to provide more housing outside of cites. Housing outside of inner cities is in fact in oversupply, so how is building more of it going to help anything? The fact is that people could always relocate if they chose to, they simple choose not to. The reasons they choose not to include ties to family, community, and culture. Those who are in poverty due to problems with mental illness, drug addiction, alcoholism, and inappropriate social values get better services in the central cities that elsewhere, so they will not be inclined to move."

My opponent obviously does not understand the situation of Section 8. Builders do not want their houses to be Section 8 houses, as this decreases their profit. That leads to Section 8 housing being situated mainly in the inner city, where real estate is already lower than that level. Also, I do not propose building new houses, I propose purchasing houses from contractors and real estate companies to be used as low income housing.

"Proponent asserts that 'Section 8 housing does not let people live wherever they choose to live, it lets them live in areas that are specially designated for Section 8 housing, and that creates ghettos.' This is false. Section 8 is a rent subsidy program that provides payment to private landlords to accommodate low income renters. It operates throughout the United States, and is as available in rural New Mexico as it is in urban Detroit. It is a voucher program. I remind Proponent of the virtues of voucher programs:"

As I said, landlords choose if they will allow Section 8 subsidies, and most choose not to, because real estate value goes down if they do.

"Proponent claimed his plan would eliminate poverty. He now grants that a certain part of poverty cannot be eliminated. This concedes that his plan will not work. The best he can do is to argue that poverty that is a result of mental illness, drug addiction, alcoholism, and inappropriate social values (those values that lead to an unwillingness to work hard) are an insignificant part of total poverty. What statistics are there to prove that?"

You place an insurmountable burden with your interpretation of my plan's goal. No plan can totally eliminate poverty.

"The notion is clearly contradicted by the rapid escape from poverty of penniless immigrants who arrive in the US with very high motivation. A prime example are the middle class people expelled from Cuba by Castro, who have very rapidly succeeded in Florida. Refugees from rural Vietnam and Cambodia are another good example. In a society like the US that has many opportunities, motivation is the primary factor for success. This is true even if the opportunities are imperfect."

Opponent does not support his claim that these immigrants are succeeding rapidly.

"Professor Blumberg cites only the statistic that half the metropolitan poor live in suburbs. He gives no statistic on how many lack cars. We know that overall 75% of the poor have cars. To evaluate the effectiveness of providing cars we need to know how many people in poverty simultaneously (1) lack cars, (2) could use cars more effectively than public transportation, (3) are not disabled in such a way that they cannot drive, and (4) and are motivated to use a car to get a job. The upper limit is the 25% who lack cars. So what is the real number? Is it 5%? Proponent has made no argument that his plan would have a substantial effect."

As I said, the statistic that 75% have cars is skewed. That means your data is false.

". Proponent grants that his plan will not end poverty. He makes no argument that it would even have a substantial impact. Therefore the proposition fails."

The debate is about whether the proposition is good or not, not about whether it will totally end poverty (that would be pointless). As Con you must show it will not significantly reduce it.
RoyLatham

Con

Proponent started out proposing a debate on his "plan to eliminate poverty." Now at the end of the debate he claims "The debate is about whether the proposition is good or not, not about whether it will totally end poverty (that would be pointless). As Con you must show it will not significantly reduce it." Using Proponent's logic one could propose a plan to eliminate poverty that offered giving free haircuts to poor people. That would help them get better jobs, you see. That would meet Proponent's criteria of "being good." Moreover, according to Proponent, the whole burden of proof that it would be ineffective shifts to the opposition. Since there has not been much study on that mechanism, he would then declare himself the winner.

When a plan is offered under the banner of "eliminating poverty," the burden of proof falls upon the Proponent to prove it is effective. We don't demand proof of 100% elimination of poverty, but something substantial, perhaps eliminating 40% of poverty. Proponent should also argue what it would cost, so we could evaluate it against other plans. What Proponent has settled for is saying that what he plans are "good things." Even at that level, one is good, one is bad, and one does about nothing.

Vouchers

I like the concept of vouchers and I think they would improve the educational system at no increase in cost. However, I don't think they would have a significant effect on eliminating poverty. The primary driving force in eliminating poverty is a prosperous economy. A prosperous economy creates jobs at all levels. In India they had a vast oversupply of college graduates, who, thanks to democratic socialism could not find meaningful employment. In the United States, there has significant shortage of unskilled labor, a shortage that has been met by roughly 15 million illegal immigrants. In a prosperous economy, there are many opportunities. The question is why those opportunities are not seized. Education helps, but it is an incremental improvement for poor people, not a fundamental one. Proponent's data suggested vouchers might make an improvement was at the 5-7% level, at most, and I think that is reasonable.

A counter-example I gave was that of penniless immigrants from Castro's Cuba and from Southeast Asia who succeeded despite language barriers and discrimination using the present educational system. Proponent doubts the success, but offers no data in contradiction. In "Case Studies in Diversity: Refugees in America in the 1990s," D. W. Haines (ed.), Joseph Coleman writes:

"The data also support the more general notion, common in both the popular media and the academic literature, of Cubans as a success story ... this ... reflects the confidence the Cubans have in themselves as a successful and cultured people." (p. 27)

The story of Asian immigrants is well known,

"Asian immigrants to the US, many of whom arrived practically penniless and took low-paying jobs with little prospect
for advancement, have become among the wealthiest, best-educated people in the country. ... ferociously hard-working high achievers who succeed in education" Financial Times 2007 http://www.awib.org...

The educational system of the US would be marginally improved by vouchers, but the economic and educational opportunities as they now exist serve perfectly well for those who are driven by their culture to succeed.

Section 8 Housing

Proponent claimed "As of now, we build "projects" in the inner city. If we built Section 8 only in the suburbs, and in spread out areas, we wouldn't get ghettos." and "Section 8 housing does not let people live wherever they choose to live, it lets them live in areas that are specially designated for Section 8 housing, and that creates ghettos." Those assertions were shown to be completely false. Section 8 is a voucher program that let's people live anywhere they choose.

Proponent then states "As I said, landlords choose if they will allow Section 8 subsidies, and most choose not to, because real estate value goes down if they do." This is false and Proponent offers no evidence that it is true. It makes little sense, because it supposes that landlords care more about preserving property values in the neighborhood than about renting out a house that would otherwise stay empty, thereby costing the landlord considerable loss of revenue. Proponent is supporting a massively expensive socialist program of buying housing and renting it out, when it is completely unnecessary. There is no shortage of Section 8 housing.

Moreover, government housing programs fail uniformly because the government bureaucracy has little interest in looking after the property and improving it. Bureaucracy benefits by expanding the bureaucracy. This means that money that could go to aiding poor people goes instead to government bureaucrats whose interest is in expanding their bureaucracy. The money drain from the taxpayers leaves less for private enterprise, and ultimately puts more people into poverty than it helps.

Providing Cars

The statistic that 75% of poor people have cars comes from the U.S. Census Bureau. Proponent says it is skewed and therefore it is false. His grounds for saying it is false is nothing more than that it doesn't agree with his theory. He offers no contrary data at all, let alone data from a source more reliable than the Census Bureau. What he offers is a limited claim from a section of Los Angeles that some poor people would have better access to jobs if they had cars. Los Angeles is noted for its poor public transportation system. It may well be true that in that particular section of Los Angeles, the local government would do well to provide some sort of support to car ownership, but the argument that on a nationwide basis there would be any significant impact is unsupported. 75% have cars, and many of the rest are either disabled, better served by public transport, or not motivated to find a job even if they had a car.

Summary

Proponent offers a plan to eliminate poverty. The voucher aspect has the most promise, and might work, optimistically, at the 5-7% level. Building large amounts of public housing in the suburbs is a socialist boondoggle that would ultimately increase rather than decrease poverty by foolish wasting resources. Providing cars treats so few poor people it would have a negligible impact. People move into and out of poverty in one to two generations. None of Proponents plans work to prevent people from entering into poverty, therefore it is not going to seriously affect the total poverty rates. The principle causes of poverty are (1) misfortune from accident, mental illness, disease, or other tragic circumstances; (2) limited total economic prosperity and the economic ups and downs in a locality; (3) social problems such as drugs, alcoholism, and criminal lifestyles; and (4) lack of motivation due to cultural patterns that do not emphasize hard work, value education, or honor success. The dominant problems are all very difficult to solve, and Proponent does not address any of them. His plan will not have any significant impact on poverty.

The proposition should be defeated.
Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 9 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
It's really on the plan itself.
Posted by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
Would it? I guess it depends on interpretation, since you didn't specifically outline a resolution anywhere. You simply said that CON would have to disprove your plan. I view the resolution as "PRO's plan would eliminate poverty."
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 9 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
But a pro poverty case would negate my plan I guess.
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 9 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Ohh... I see.
Posted by Rezzealaux 9 years ago
Rezzealaux
Oh.

Darn.
Posted by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
Unfortunately, this isn't a debate about whether poverty is good or bad, but rather whether LR4N's plan will eliminate poverty.
Posted by Rezzealaux 9 years ago
Rezzealaux
I read an interesting pro-poverty case of his a while ago.
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 9 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
What?
Posted by Rezzealaux 9 years ago
Rezzealaux
"Here's my plan to eliminate poverty."

PLUTO WHERE ARE YOUUUUUUUU
9 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 3 years ago
9spaceking
LR4N6FTW4EVARoyLathamTied
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Reasons for voting decision: this debate is full of vote bombing, but nevertheless most people voted for the guy with the better refutal to pro's plan.
Vote Placed by RationalMadman 4 years ago
RationalMadman
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Reasons for voting decision: countering erick
Vote Placed by DDO.votebombcounter1 4 years ago
DDO.votebombcounter1
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Reasons for voting decision: Countering Erick
Vote Placed by Erick 5 years ago
Erick
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Reasons for voting decision: :)
Vote Placed by wonderwoman 7 years ago
wonderwoman
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Vote Placed by Nails 7 years ago
Nails
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Vote Placed by TheCategorical 8 years ago
TheCategorical
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Vote Placed by falafel 8 years ago
falafel
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Vote Placed by RoyLatham 9 years ago
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