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Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
6 Points


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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/19/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 663 times Debate No: 65487
Debate Rounds (4)
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Votes (1)





Humans have been born with the instinct to survive. Pre historic beings, hunter-gatherer types would do what they could to survive. They normally found safety in groups yes, but the socialist argument that the idea of egalitarian hunter-gatherers does not take into account that these people are using these methods to benefit their own community. This is because the groups' survival relies on the success of its community, which has subsequently adopted the human trait of greed in a collective sense. Just like we see today, nations have naturally adopted the human traits of greed and survival, because in a world where nothing is free, you have to earn it through means of power. By pursuing this model, a nation is effectively pursuing capitalism, and by pursuing an idealist socialist model, a nation state essentially undermines its security in an anarchic system, where capitalist countries thrive, and those socialist countries see themselves resort to capitalist economies.


I accept this debate and wish my opponent good luck. I assume that Con will be arguing against capitalism, and Pro will be arguing in favor of capitalism.

Definition of "capitalism":
an economic and political system in which a country's trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.

Definition of "survival":
the state or fact of continuing to live or exist, typically in spite of an accident, ordeal, or difficult circumstances.

It seems to me that Pro is trying to argue that capitalism is necessary for survival. Which it is not. The three things that are necessary for survival are:

1. Water
2. Energy
3. Oxygen
4. Shelter
5. Sleep

Thus, capitalism is NOT essential for survival, as it clearly does not fall, by itself, under any of those categories listed above.

Sources: Oxford Pocket Dictionary of English,
Debate Round No. 1


When we take a look at Kenneth Waltz's take on the international system in Man, the State and War - he argues that the actors within in this system (nations) operate under an anarchic structure, where there is no enforcing power to stop another actor from waging warfare.

So with this in mind, take the British Empire as an example, where Imperialism - a subject of the capitalist system, has destroyed the existence of many actors through exploitation. This capitalist driven nation, saw the end of various tribes and kingdoms in Africa, and replaced them with the modern day states we now know.

The point being is that survival is reliant on those 5 necessities that you listed, however those necessities are not granted to everyone. With the anarchic system in place, there is no stopping an actor from taking those neccesities for their own gain, and because they want to secure their own security. This is because humans are innately selfish. This selfishness creates a capitalist society.


I extend my above arguments. I will now attempt to refute Pro's current contentions.

I am fully aware that the end result of communism, a system of socialism, according to Karl Marx, is supposed to be a complete "withering away" of the socialist worker's state- anarchy, in other words. I assume that you are arguing for capitalism with the existence of a state, as you don't seem to think that anarchy can work. Very well. But you also need to be aware of anarcho-capitalism:

"A term coined by Austrian-school economist Murray Rothbard to describe a market-based society with no government."

As you can see, capitalism is compatible with lack of government, whereas your contentions are such that capitalism requires a state. Which it does not. In an anarcho-capitalist society, services such as food, water, and protection would be provided by private companies.

Imperialism is different from capitalism. In imperialism, the state is still able to control industry.
Debate Round No. 2


I don't think you understand what I am trying to say. I am not arguing for any of Karl Marx's points, anarchy is not a system that can work or not, it is a platform for the conduct of war and capitalism, it is a feature of the international system. By taking a realist stance on this, I am arguing that the ideals of socialism could not exist in such a system, where one nation practices socialism, and the other capitalism, the socialist state will inevitably face defeat, because the capitalist will take advantage of it.

Looking at historical examples, the USSR reverted to capitalist measures because its socialist planned economy was stagnating. Lenin allowed the Kulak's to earn a profit, and later Gorbachev implemented capitalist measures through Perestroika. The PRC, following the Cultural Revolution, had to implement reform to its socialist planned economy, because it was facing imminent economic crisis. So it integrated itself into the world economy. They both resort to capitalism.


We are arguing the merits of capitalism, not socialism, as indicated by the title of this debate.

It is possible to be non-capitalist and at the same time non-socialist. Pro has still not refuted this fact, which I have made apparent previously (regarding imperialism) Socialism is, by definition:

"A political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole"

It is possible for private business to be outlawed and socialism STILL non-existent in a government by this definition. A dictator/monarch could easily outlaw private business without the input of the "community as a whole".

The definition of "anarchy" is thus:

"Absence of government and absolute freedom of the individual, regarded as a political ideal"

In the world there still exist governments, ergo anarchy does not exist in the real world.

Sources: Oxford Pocket Dictionary of English.
Debate Round No. 3


It isn't possible to be a non-capitalist and at the same time non-socialist. If you look at Imperialist economics, you will find countless aspects of capitalist economic traits within imperialism, there is no ONE definition of capitalism, trying to define it as one precise model is disregarding the multitudes or varieties. In Imperialism we find international trading and global branding, such as the British East India Company. We see the participation in the stock market, we see private enterprise and free market economics. Even in today's 'Communist' China we see State capitalism, whereby the state owns a percentage of companies, which participate in the stock market, foreign investment and exploitation of foreign resources. Capitalism has seen the survival of all socialist nations, for otherwise they would not have succeeded. And as for anarchy, read Waltz's Man, the State, and War - his 3rd image shows how the world operates without government. There is no government of the world.


I thank my opponent for an interesting, if brief, debate. I'll make this short:

1. Capitalism cannot exist within socialism, and vice versa, so capitalism cannot have "seen the survival of all socialist nations," as indicated by the respective definitions of both;

2. "No government of the world" still does not mean the world is without GOVERNMENTS;

3. The existence of capitalism within imperialism, according to the definitions supplied in my above arguments, need not apply universally to all imperialist states.


1. Capitalism can exist with anarchy

2. Non-capitalist nations need not be socialist

3. We are meant to be arguing the merits of capitalism

4. Capitalism is not good.

Why am I against capitalism? Capitalism requires the exploitation of workers by business owners, and the business owners earn more than the workers do. This leads to wealth inequality, which is not necessary. Inequality leads to conflicts, and conflicts are not good.

Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 4
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1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Comrade_Silly_Otter 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Con is the only one to use sources. Pro did wander into Socialism, though the debate is about Capitalism. I can see why they would do so, but the debate is about Capitalism.