The Instigator
Willoweed
Pro (for)
Losing
1 Points
The Contender
TheTruthAnalyst
Con (against)
Winning
34 Points

A federal government mandate making it illegal to pump your own gas would improve the economy

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 8 votes the winner is...
TheTruthAnalyst
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/20/2011 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,116 times Debate No: 19373
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (9)
Votes (8)

 

Willoweed

Pro

A federal government mandate making it illegal to pump your own gas would be a good way to improve the economy

New Jersey and Oregon are the only two states where you already do not pump your own gas. So the federal mandate would be applied as these two states apply theirs.
I will allow my opponent to accept the debate and then I'll make my arguments
TheTruthAnalyst

Con

I accept and await your arguments.
Debate Round No. 1
Willoweed

Pro

I will fist provide an overview of my arguments and then go into details.

1)The ban on pumping your own gas would result in higher fuel economy and therefor lower total gasoline costs. The ban would also result in less wear and tear on tires and therefore less total tire costs.
2)The ban on pumping your own gas would result in less and less sever accidents, and therefore less money spent on repairing cars, and paying for car related injuries.
3)The ban would result in the direct creation of thousands of jobs and the indirect creation of even more jobs.
4)Even more savings via increased fuel economy via trained gas attendants.

First I will post the explanations and then I will post the data afterwards.

1)Currently millions of Americans are driving with improperly inflated tires which results in more wear and tear on those tires, and a decrease in fuel economy. A ban on pumping gas not only makes it so someone else pumps your gas but it makes it so someone checks your tires. Generally over the long term tire inspections would be staggered to occur every other 10 days or so; however for the first few weeks of this policy tires would be checked every time in order to quickly achieved a large increase in properly inflated tires. This increase would result in higher fuel economy and longer tire lifespans.
2)Properly inflated tires also results in quicker stopping times for vehicles, meaning fewer accidents and saver driving.
3)Due to the fact that gas stations will now need to hire gas attendants it will result in thousands of new jobs. Also due to the fact that consumers will be saving money that increase in spending will result in even more jobs.
4)Having a trained gas attendant instead of a bunch of untrained amateurs can result in more savings via properly sealed gas caps.

Now I will post the data.

a) 38% of cars have at least one tire 20% below optimal pressure resulting in 76 million cars being 8psi below optimal levels [1].
b) 27% have tires that are 25% below optimal pressure meaning 54 million cars are 10psi below the optimal level [1].
c) For every 1psi drop in pressure it reduces the tires lifespan by 1.78% [1].
d) The average lifetime of a tire is 45,000 miles [1].
e) The average cost of a new tire is around 60$ [1][3].
f) On average Americans drive 13,500 miles every year [2].
g) Fuel efficiency is reduced by 1% for around every 3psi drop below the proper level [1].
h) A gallon of gas costs around $3.65 [4].
i) MPG standards for most vehicles in America range from around 20-35mpg [5].
j) Improperly capped gas caps results in the loss of 147million gallons of gas a year [8].
k) In Oregon there are 7,600 gas station jobs due bans on self-service gas pumping [7]
l) If we adjust Oregon's jobs due to illegal self-service on gas pumping to reflect the USA as a whole then making it illegal to pump your own gas would create almost 600,000 new jobs.
m) When the math is done it finds that 4billion dollars a year is wasted on extra tire purchases due to the increase in wear and tear of improperly inflated tires
n) When the math is done it finds that 6 billion is wasted due to decreases in fuel economy from improperly inflated tires.
o) When the math is done it finds that improperly capped gas caps wastes 600million dollars a year.
p) If you include the fact that gas hurts human health and the environment you find that for each dollar of gas pumped it creates 2-3 dollars in extra health/environmental costs.[9][10]
q) This means that the total money saved would by over 17billion dollars a year.
R) When you subtract the cost of hiring the gas attendants (assuming they are paid 20,000 dollars yearly) it results in a net of 5 billion dollars saved each year

[1] http://www.nhtsa.gov...
[2] http://www.fhwa.dot.gov...
[3] http://www.costhelper.com...
[4] http://www.eia.gov...
[5] http://www.bts.gov...
[6] http://www.dol.gov...
[7] http://www.seattlepi.com...
[8] http://www.getrichslowly.org...
[9] http://nuclearfissionary.com...
[10] http://centerforinvestigativereporting.org...
TheTruthAnalyst

Con

Thank you for your arguments Pro. I will begin by addressing your points.

1 - Pro states that "A ban on pumping gas not only makes it so someone else pumps your gas but it makes it so someone checks your tires.". I assert that nothing in the resolution applies to someone checking your tire pressure for you. Making it illegal to pump your own gas only has direct implication on who pumps your gas. Anything else is only conjecture. Would the attendant also check your oil, transmission fluid, belts, fuel injectors, and spark plugs? The resolution is about who pumps your gas and nothing more. In addition, any decrease in tire wear will have a direct affect on the tire industry, reducing total sales. Any apparent savings would actually be negated through lost sales.

2 - Properly inflated tires don't necessarily decrease stopping distances. A study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that under-inflated tires have an increased stopping distance on concrete, and decreased stopping distance on asphalt.[1] It could just as easily be argued that under-inflated tires can save lives. Pro referenced a summary from the NHTSA rather than the actual stopping-distance data.

3 - Pro's assertion that customers will be saving money is unfounded. In fact, logic dictates that if a gas station has to hire additional attendants, it will have to increase its prices to pay for those attendants. So we see that the exact opposite is true. Customers will pay more to have their gas pumped for them.

Pro also asserts that such a mandate would create thousands of new jobs. I ask, where would the money to pay for these jobs come from? Our economy is in a state of frequent layoffs due to companies not being able to make payroll. Pro provides no information into any companies' financial data to see if such mandates would be supportable, or if they would cause companies to be unable to meet payroll costs.

4 - Pro provides that properly seated gas caps could save 147 million gallons of gas per year. The ultimate source for this information is a webpage from Advance Auto Parts, a seller of gas caps, with no reference for where this number comes from.[2] Are these from cars without gas caps(would an attendant give a cas cap to a customer without one free of charge?), or are these just damaged gas caps(would an attendant repair/replace damaged gas caps?) or are these from gas-caps that simply aren't tightened enough? No study is ever referenced, so this data appears to have no solid foundation.

Additionally, Pro provides no basis for calling the average American an 'untrained amateur' when it comes to pumping gas.

a,b,c,d,e,g - All of this data refers not to gas, or pumping your own gas, but tires, which aren't included in the original premise for the debate. Unless the mandate makes it illegal to pump your own gas and makes it mandatory for attendants to check your tire pressure, these points are all irrelevant.

j - Unfounded data with no backup.

k - The number of jobs in Oregon are irrelevant without considering if gas stations could afford to pay for new jobs. Pro's figure of 7,600 jobs comes from a website with no source for that figure. I would appreciate statistics that are supported rather than claimed.

l - If we use Pro's figure of 600,000 new jobs, and Pro's figure of $20,000 yearly average pay, then we are imposing $12,000,000,000 of wages, let alone the cost of benefits and insurance, on gas stations across the U.S. The U.S. Census shows that there are 66,477 gas stations nation-wide as of 2008[3], meaning the average burden on each gas station would be $180,000 yearly to pay for the new positions. No new jobs can be created without taking money from the company employing the individual, or the customer paying for the product.

If we take the money from the customers(by increasing gas prices), we can calculate the increase in price. The Department of Transportation shows that Americans drove approximately 3 trillion miles combined in 2010.[4] The Bureau for Transportation Statistics shows that the average gas mileage for all vehicles in 2009(most recent data) is 17.6 MPG.[5] This means Americans consumed 170,454,545,454 gallons of gasoline. To pay for all these jobs the average price of gas would have to be increased by approximately $0.07 per gallon. To make things clear, this is $0.07 per gallon that the average American won't be able to spend elsewhere on the economy. So the only thing that is happening is a shift of money from one sector to another. The rest of the economic sectors would lose the $12,000,000,000 that would now be spent on gas.

m - Again, this has nothing to do with a mandate on pumping your own gas. Additionally, Pro calls the $6 billion 'wasted' money, even though it is money that goes into the tire industry.

n,o - More information unrelated to the premise.

p - This argument has nothing to do with who pumps your gas.

q - This total figure uses unsupported(see previous arguments) and unrelated figures(see argument p)

r - again, misleading information because money not spent on new tires is money that doesn't go into the tire industry.

I propose that Pro must provide information showing:

1 - How companies will pay for these new jobs.
2 - How this mandate will create demand.

Unless this mandate would increase demand, the economy will be unaffected. Demand drives economy. When demand increases, companies are able to produce more supply, and total cash-flow increases. With more demand and more supply, jobs naturally come into factor as companies start-up and expand.

Trying to create jobs without affecting demand only results in transferring money from one sector to another, and can create dangerous financial bubbles.


[1]http://www.nhtsa.gov...;- Table III-8
[2]http://corp.advanceautoparts.com...;
[3]http://www.census.gov...;
[4]http://www.fhwa.dot.gov...;
[5]http://www.bts.gov...;
Debate Round No. 2
Willoweed

Pro

My argument rest solely on the fact that gas attendants periodically checking proper tire inflation and properly screwing on gas caps saves more money through increase fell economy then it costs to hire those gas attendants. If the government were to mandate that it is illegal too pump your own gas and hat gas attendants periodical check your tire inflation and are properly trained then it would actually result in consumers saving more money even after paying for the costs of hiring those gas attendants.
TheTruthAnalyst

Con

"My argument rest solely on the fact that gas attendants periodically checking proper tire inflation and properly screwing on gas caps saves more money through increase fell economy then it costs to hire those gas attendants."

Again, nothing in the mandate to make it illegal to pump your own gas specifically states that all attendants will check tire pressures. Also, I have shown the information about properly seated gas-caps to be completely unfounded, so that argument should not be made unless proper sources can be identified.

I also reaffirm that any money 'saved' by decreasing tire wear is money that isn't spent in the tire industry, directly affecting that industry by the same amount.

"If the government were to mandate that it is illegal too pump your own gas and hat gas attendants periodical check your tire inflation"

Pro is attempting to change the resolution. No rebuttal needed.

Even if we take Pro's arguments about saving money on MPGs(which reduces the amount of money spent in the fuel sector) as being $6 billion, and saving money on tires(which reduces the amount of money spent in the tire sector) as being $4 billion, then there would still be a $2 billion deficit to pay for the salaries of the gas attendants. In other words, we would be siphoning $10 billion from the fuel and tire industries to pay for these new jobs, and still have a deficit.

I re-state my assertion that a federal mandate making it illegal to pump your own gas wouldn't improve the economy. It wouldn't create any new demand. All it would do would take $12 billion that consumers would normally spend in other sectors and move it to the fuel industry sector.

I await any arguments from Pro that are directly related to the resolution.
Debate Round No. 3
Willoweed

Pro

The benefits from property inflated tires and properly caped gas caps exceed the costs of hiring gas attendants at every gas station as proved by my original post.
TheTruthAnalyst

Con

Even though this isn't directly related to the resolution, I will once again refute Pro's statements about money saved from properly capped gas caps and properly inflated tires.

Pro stated this resolution would create 600,000 new jobs, at a salary of $20,000 per year, for a total cost of $12 billion.

Pro stated that money saved by having properly inflated tires would be $6 billion from increased MPG, and $4 billion not spent on replacing tires. Before we continue, I must state that this is $6 billion less spent on gasoline($6 billion less in revenue for gas stations) and $4 billion less spent on new tires($4 billion less in revenue for tire companies). No new dollars or new demand have been created.

Price lost to improperly seated gas caps has no basis.

That is a $10 billion shift in the economy, but it's the same money, just going to different places.

I do want to thank Pro for the debate and the arguments.
Debate Round No. 4
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by Gileandos 5 years ago
Gileandos
The Broken Window fallacy is today called "Picking winners and losers".
Posted by Willoweed 5 years ago
Willoweed
Yes ApostateAbe I do have a trick up my sleeve and I do know about the broken window fallacy. : )
Posted by wiploc 5 years ago
wiploc
Willoweed, if you change the resolution to ...

: Resolved: A federal government mandate making it illegal to pump your own gas would be a good way to improve the economy,

... then I think you'll get plenty of takers.
Posted by ApostateAbe 5 years ago
ApostateAbe
I would love to see what Pro has up his sleeve. Does he know about the broken window fallacy?
Posted by Illegalcombatant 5 years ago
Illegalcombatant
HAHA I had no idea there were places where it was the law that some one else has to pump your own gas.

I am guessing some time ago it was a concern for safety and maybe petrol stations saw it as a way to make some extra money by over charging on the "service" fee. But if people aren't getting your product as quickly plus your having to pay extra cost by employee people to pump gas maybe its back fires.
Posted by Double_R 5 years ago
Double_R
I'll take this if you change the word "could" to "would" or even "would likely".
Posted by KRFournier 5 years ago
KRFournier
As an Oregonian, I am so against this. The only time I remotely appreciate it is in the dead of winter. Otherwise, I hate paying more money per gallon just to wait five times longer to get gas by people that end up doing a worse job. I've watched gas gush out of vehicles onto the ground while an attendant was somewhere else. Most of these places hire one guy to manage about six pumps. It's common to sit at the gas station for 15-20 minutes, depending on the time of day.
Posted by wiploc 5 years ago
wiploc
I agree with the previous post.

And I'm totally against requiring people to let hirelings pump their gas. Why not just pay people for watching porn? Or just send everybody money? (I'm seriously in favor of just sending everybody money.) Why deliberately make an industry inefficient as an excuse for giving people money?
Posted by Danielle 5 years ago
Danielle
The word "could" in the resolution makes this impossible to argue as Con. Anything COULD happen.
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by Ore_Ele 5 years ago
Ore_Ele
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro bombed this debate. As someone that lives in Oregon, NEVER has a gas attendent checked my tire pressure, EVER. What he should have brought up is that Oregon, despite having gas attendents by law, actually has cheaper gas than both Washington and California. While this may be due to lower gas taxes (not sure if that is the case), an argument can be made that by having those people employed rather then unemployed, the government needs less taxes (so can offer a tax break).
Vote Placed by socialpinko 5 years ago
socialpinko
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: The majority of Pro's arguments rested on changing the resolution to have gas station attendants check tire pressure as well as pump gas. However, this was never stated in the resolution or the first round. It is primarily for this reason that Pro loses the debate.
Vote Placed by Double_R 5 years ago
Double_R
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Giving Pro the benefit of the doubt, I'll just say he relies on the assumption that gas attendants would check tire pressure as part of their routine when pumping gas. However even if this is the case, he never supported this assumption nor would it be logical to believe it would make any significant difference so his tire argument can not be accepted. Every other "fact" he gave either had no basis or simply shifted money from one place to another, having no positive effect on the economy.
Vote Placed by KRFournier 5 years ago
KRFournier
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro relies on the tire pressure angle. I've been in Oregon now for six years. Not ONCE has an attendant checked my tires or even offered to do so. Nor does the resolution specify that such a service must ALSO be mandated. Pro then failed to offer any degree of rebuttal.
Vote Placed by wiploc 5 years ago
wiploc
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Before convenience stores did ruinous cost cutting, gas stations offered full service. Do the mandated pumpers in Oregon check tire pressure without mandate? Or do they just pump gas? I don't know. Mandated pumpers don't necessarily get your pressure checked. Mandated pressure-checking isn't part of the resolution. To win, Pro would have to show that the mandated pumpers would check pressure without that being mandated.
Vote Placed by Mr.Infidel 5 years ago
Mr.Infidel
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con negated and had superior conduct and grammar. Sources are tied. Arguments to con as pro dropped all his arguments.
Vote Placed by Gileandos 5 years ago
Gileandos
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Arguements and superior sources to Con. Great topic though and Conduct point to Pro for bringing up the topic.
Vote Placed by shift4101 5 years ago
shift4101
WilloweedTheTruthAnalystTied
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Reasons for voting decision: I feel like Pro didn't accurately pronounce his position. Con did negate his first four intial arguments IMO sufficiently, and no new arguments were provided. He even attacked your data. Either way, Con's arguments convinced me sort of, while Pro's didn't convince me at all.