The Instigator
THEBOMB
Pro (for)
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9 Points
The Contender
XDebatorX
Con (against)
Losing
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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
THEBOMB
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/8/2012 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,134 times Debate No: 20975
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (7)
Votes (2)

 

THEBOMB

Pro

I want to be surprised. So, I challenge my opponent to come up with a topic to debate (hopefully something non-serious but either way's fine). Round 1 shall be for acceptance and the topic of my opponent choice.

Surprise me :D
XDebatorX

Con

I accept my opponent's challenge to make up the debate topic. The debate topic is:


Space Exploration
Is the investment in the exploration of space Justified?


I will be arguing against this and you will be arguing for this since you are Pro and I am Con. With the decision of the debate topic, I ask you to make your opening arguments...
Debate Round No. 1
THEBOMB

Pro

I thank my opponent for their acceptance and choice of topic and will now begin.

A man was once asked why he kept trying to climb Mount Everest; his answer, "because it was there." Exploration is an intrinsic part of human nature. And here is where I shall begin my argument.

Contention 1. Space exploration will allow man to eventually set up human civilization in another world.
As most people know all too well, it was natural catastrophe that caused the demise of our predecessors, the dinosaurs. If man stopped exploring outer space it would be irresponsible. The same natural disaster on earth, killing the dinosaurs, could happen once and again, and over billions of years it is highly probable an event like it will happen again. It simply would be irresponsible to stop exploring space now when space exploration could potentially be the only thing saving the human race.
John M. Logsdon, director of the Space Policy Institute and acting director of the Center for International Science and Technology Policy at George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, states "eventually some number of people in the future will establish permanent settlements away from Earth, in the extreme case to ensure that the human species will survive a planetary catastrophe, but also because people migrate for both economic opportunities and new experiences." Mankind needs to take a broader approach to this topic.

Contention 2. Space exploration can help improve economies
Let's take the United States for instance, in 2009, NASA's budget was 17.78 billion dollars (1), this represents a minute portion of the United State's GDP which is in the trillions. G. Scott Hubbard, a professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Stanford University, estimates for every 1 dollar spent on the space program, the United States government makes 8 dollars. An 800% profit. You may ask ?how does that work?" Here is the simple answer: royalties on NASA patents and licenses made directly from the space program go into the US Treasury, not NASA's budget. Joan Vernikos, a member of the Space Studies Board of the National Academy and former director of NASA's Life Sciences Division, believes if NASA was allowed the returns on their own patents, NASA would be self-sustaining. NASAs budget is not large enough to even require it to be cut.
"Studying humans living in the microgravity of space has expanded our understanding of osteoporosis and balance disorders, and has led to new treatments. Wealth-generating medical devices and instrumentation such as digital mammography and outpatient breast biopsy procedures and the application of telemedicine to emergency care are but a few of the social and economic benefits of manned exploration that we take for granted." Joan Vernikos knows what she is talking about. When you look at all the good space exploration has done and weigh it against the bad, the good outweighs the bad. The world would NOT be as technologically advanced without space exploration.
Keith Cowing, founder and editor of NASAWatch.com and a former NASA space biologist, states "tax dollars spent on space projects result in jobs — a large proportion of which are high paying, high tech positions." NASA creates jobs within the United States. "If we Americans do not think so, then why is it that nations such as China and India — nations with far greater social welfare issues to address with their limited budgets — are speeding up their space exploration programs? What is it about human space exploration that they see?" Countries with far worse societal problems than the United States are speeding up their space exploration program. The question is why should the United States end this program when there are obvious benefits?

Contention 3. Great civilizations never stopped exploring.
Throughout history, all great empires explored the bounds of their world. Today, the world is basically all but explored. People now need to explore towards the outer limits of the universe.

Contention 4. Exploration of outer space provides humanity with the answer to two fundamental questions: Are we alone? Are there other forms of life beside those on Earth?
The reason why this happens is obvious, without exploring outer space, we cannot know what is in outer space.

Source
1) http://www.nasa.gov... (page 4)
XDebatorX

Con

My opponent starts by saying that the exploration of space connects with our desire to explore etc. Space exploration was triggered not by a desire to explore but to prove which ideologies were better, capitalism and communism. Advancements in space were due to the cold war between Russia and U.S.A because who ever could control outer space was more stronger (this is a form of an arms race).


Rebuttal #1


My opponent said: Contention 1. Space exploration will allow man to eventually set up human civilization in another world.

As most people know all too well, it was natural catastrophe that caused the demise of our predecessors, the dinosaurs. If man stopped exploring outer space it would be irresponsible. The same natural disaster on earth, killing the dinosaurs, could happen once and again, and over billions of years it is highly probable an event like it will happen again.


My opponent says that space exploration is necessary to set up human civilization elsewhere because cataclysmic events couldoccur. Just because an event happens in the past doesn't mean it is highly probable it could happen in the future. That same logic could apply to anything that ever happened since earth began to exist. If you believe a cataclysmic event is going to happen, provide some evidence for it.


It would be a very long time (millions if not implausible) before we could even travel to Venus or the other planets in our solar system comfortably let alone a hospitable planet for life which is many light years away. Any hospitable planet for life is at least hundreds of light years away. Light is the fastest thing known to man today, if it takes light lifetimes to travel there then what about a spacecraft?? People would die before even reaching the destination and that is assuming unlimited fuel and resources. It is actually implausible that we will set up human civilization in another planet. It is extremely difficult just reaching the moon.


Rebuttal #2


My opponent said: “Contention 2. Space exploration can help improve economies


My opponent says that space exploration improves the economy while actually quite the opposite is true. After the cold war began to dwindle down, investments in space exploration were severly cut back due to the huge costs. The costs of space travel are enormous. From the time the NASA space program began and today the total costs have been around 400 billion dollars. This is nearly half a trillion dollars!! No matter what money NASA makes it could never outweigh this amount of money.

http://en.wikipedia.org...


Rebuttals #3 and #4


While I agree with my opponent that exploration is good and we should seek to acquire knowledge about the universe we live in, it is simply a luxury we cannot afford. There are too many issues going on in the world today to be talking about space travel. It is like someone trying to run before they walk and I will address this more in my arguments...


Argument #1 (too many issues in our world today to consider space travel)


We have a world today scarred by war, famine and poverty. How does it make any kind of moral sense to send rovers costing costing hundreds of thousands to analyze dirt on Mars (useless information) where as on the other hand there are millions suffering from poverty in the very same country (U.S)? We can only consider space travel once all (or near all) the issues on earth have been addressed. To address the problems of over-population and limited resources on out planet we must find solutions using all our resources, intellect and political power not on chasing a dream which will not happen any time in the near future. However the issues on our earth today can be solved much more nearer in the future than space travel. Space travel is only hindering it.


Argument # 2 (waste of money, better spent on the people of our planet)


Space exploration is actually a waste of money. The near half a trillion dollars spent on NASA (not even including Russian space program) could have been invested in a number of things which would have drastically improved the situations on earth. While landing on the Moon is noteworthy, what did it actually accomplish? Did it provide any sort of benefit to us except draining our resources? A world free from hunger and most despairs would be truly a wonderful achievement. Michio Kaku, a popular physicist says in his article in Forbes .


“After all is said and done about what went wrong, the bottom line is simple: money. It's about $10,000 to put a pound of anything into a near-earth orbit. (Imagine John Glenn, the first American to orbit the earth, made of solid gold, and you can appreciate the enormous cost of space travel.) It costs $500 to $700 million every time the shuttle flies. Billionaire space tourists have flown to the space station at a reputed price of $20 million per head.

And to put a pound of anything on the moon costs about 10 times as much. (To reach Mars, imagine your body made of diamonds.) We are 50 years into the space age, and yet space travel is just as expensive as it always was.”

http://www.forbes.com...

Debate Round No. 2
THEBOMB

Pro

Whoever controls outer-space controls the battlefield. My opponent has conceded this point to me. This is just one more reason to keep the space program alive. For the military.

D1. Cataclysmic Events

My opponents rebuttals to this point can be summed up in two points:

R1. Improbability of cataclysmic events

a)Magnetic pole shift
Scientists have concluded Earth's magnetic poles "flip" every 300-400 thousand years (the exact number varies). The the rotation of the earth's magma is directly correlated to the rotation of the earth. With a magnetic pole shift, the earth is now spinning the opposite direction, from east-west into west-east. If a magnetic pole shift happens rapidly, the Earth's crust will change directions rapidly meaning a MASSIVE displacement of the oceans, a wall of water will wipe through all western shorelines with the potential to destroy western civilization. How this happens is simple. When the magnetic poles "flip" the earth's rotation will have to change. "Earth currently rotates west to east which means that the ocean is being naturally pulled, by centrifugal forces, towards every east coastline and away from every west coastline. If Earth's crust were simply to stop rotation, the oceans would immediately inundate every western coastal area and would create new coastlines several hundred miles inland from their current positions. And yes, the tsunami from that event alone would be cataclysmic and of biblical proportions." (1) We do not know when this next shift could begin, but, should mankind not prepare?
b)Volcanoes & Nuclear Winter
It is quite obvious that a magnetic pole shift would cause a huge change in the earth's crust. This would cause volcanoes to become super active, not to mention earthquakes, tsunamis, and other natural disasters. All around the world there are supervolcanoes, the largest of which resides under the federal park Yellowstone. An eruption would devastate over two thirds of the United States and the resulting "nuclear winter" could cool the earth up to 20 degrees. This is just Yellowstone alone. There are in fact six known supervolcanoes all around the world in Yellowstone, Long Valley, New Mexico, Indonesia, New Zealand, and Japan. "According to some volcanologists, Yellowstone volcano, located in the central US, may be on the verge of a large scale eruption. Some researches even suggest that it's past due for such an eruption. The changes around Yellowstone don't seem to get much media coverage for obvious reasons, but the effects are getting more extreme every year with the water tables becoming highly acidic, deforestation, and increased tremors. The caldera of Yellowstone lies under a lake, and it's rising. It also happens to rest on a bed of Uranium, so when it does erupt, the result will be very radioactive." (1)
I conclude it would be irresponsible to not prepare for such events.

R2. The length of travel
Let's talk about Mars. While there are risks with the task, as of 2009, NASA had the capabilities to send a team to Mars the travel would take several months. The United States, in fact, has the capability to send people to another planet. (2)

D2. Economics
I have quoted several reliable people; my opponent provides a Wikipedia article. Who should we trust? The world would neither be as technologically advanced without space travel I mean NASA represented "about 35% of total spending on academic scientific research in the United States." (3)

I shall just tie my defense of #3 and 4 with my opponents rebuttals as their arguments against the Space Program are their rebuttals.

R1 and R2. Issues and money should be spent elsewhere

a)War

Exactly how would stopping the space program end war? It will not these issues are completely unrelated.

b)Poverty

What ends poverty? An influx of jobs and money. Let's take Florida, for example, the end of the space shuttle program will, in fact, slow Florida's economic growth "The end of the shuttle program will potentially eliminate as many as 7,000 – 8,000 jobs"… "According to a state study, in the 2008 fiscal year NASA generated $4.1 billion dollars in revenue and benefits for the state. $2.1 billion of that was in household income, and over 40,000 jobs were created due to NASA-related activities." This was in Florida alone. (4) If what my opponent is saying was true, ending the space shuttle would help Florida's economy, not hurt it. NASA advanced the computer. How many jobs did that industry create? Thousands. NASA puts out contracts to private corporations to invent, how much money did that put into the economy? Millions. In 2006, directly, NASA created 25,000 jobs and added 2.8 billion dollars to the national economy. Indirectly, NASA created thousands more jobs. (5)

c)Over-population

To end over population, you need more places to put people…why not another planet? This would help with over population problems.

d)Limited resources

NASA has the most scientific patents of any organization in the world. To use resources in an economical manner you need scientific innovation. The United Stated should invest MORE money into NASA to allow it to patent technological innovations in this field. They have the most patents. You see these inventions every day. The money and jobs created by these inventions is exponential.

Let's look at ten of their inventions you may see every day: (6)

1)Invisible Braces
2)Scratch Resistant Lenses
3)Memory Foam
4)Ear Thermometer
5)Shoe Insoles
6)Long-Distance Telecommunications (phones)
7)Adjustable Smoke-detector
8)Safety grooving (in roads and runways)
9)Cordless tools
10)Water Filters

Now here is a list of patents which are important to everyday life and stemmed directly from the space program (there are over 6,300 hundred used today…I'll give 15): (7)

1)CAT scanner
2)Computer microchip (important for starting up companies such as Microsoft)
3)Cordless tools
4)Ear Thermometer
5)Freeze-dried food
6)Insulation
7)Invisible Braces
8)Joystick
9)Memory Phone
10)Satellite TV
11)Scratch Resistant Lenses
12)Shoe Insoles
13)Smoke Detector
14)Swim Suit
15)Water Filter

Why end NASA when they have done so much? NASA has creating jobs, helped the economy, and revolutionized the computer industry; you cannot mitigate the importance of Microsoft or Apple in the United States economy these companies would NOT exist without NASA's Space Program. NASA has helped the economy exponentially. Indirectly, NASA has created millions of jobs as microchips are used basically everywhere (computers, cars, you name it). The Space Program directly creates thousands of jobs, but, indirectly, in the long term, has created millions.

Keep the Space Program intact, it does help. While ending the space program hurts the economy. This is especially seen in Florida.

Sources
1.http://www.timeline2012.net...
2.http://www.chron.com...
3.http://en.wikipedia.org...
4.http://www.universetoday.com...
5.http://www.nasa.gov...
6.http://curiosity.discovery.com...
7.http://www.telegraph.co.uk...
XDebatorX

Con

My opponent says that I haven't provided evidence for the enormous costs of NASA space exploration but I have indeed gave another source which a popular physicist, Michio Kaku commented on the costs and my opponent completely disregarded it. If two sources (even disregarding the wikipedia one the forbes one is very good) aren't enough, I will provide a list which all speak about the enormous costs of NASA space exploration:


http://blogs.discovermagazine.com...

http://www.space.com...

http://www.foxnews.com...

http://www.space.com...


The last link shows how a mars rover has cost 2.5 billion!! With my previous evidence which was backed by an established physicist, these sources further strengthen my case. A couple of my opponent's sources are from NASA and his whole R2 arrgument is based on the NASA website which is more than likely to be biased than factual. It is also logical to believe that NASA has cost a lot rather than help the economy. The costs of the technology required to travel to space is anything but low.


During my opponent's last replies and arguments in R3 he listed various proofs of the benefits that the NASA space program has done. Without a doubt NASA has done good but not space exploration wise which is what this debate is about. THIS DEBATE IS ONLY ABOUT THE JUSTIFICATION OF SPACE EXPLORATION. It doesn't matter about their inventions and scientific patents. It also doesn't matter (because of the nature of this debate) that they revolutionized computer industry etc etc. This debate is about space exploration only therefore the lists he provided are false.


The evidence my opponent provided for the eventual collapse the earth seems valid. I disagree with my opponent that space exploration is the only thing which can save us. Many scientists (category as grand scale space exploration) talk about type 1 and type 2 civilization and that in order to become masters of this galaxy and beyond we must use different fuel sources other than fossil fuels which is what a type 1 civilization uses. Th is is the types of civilizations once again backed by an authentic and popular physicist Michio Kaku.


Before we can even think about grand scale space exploration in order to save the Humans from these cataclysmic events which is predicted in my opponent's source that it is in the near future whereas grand scale space exploration will take millions if not impossible as I stated why before (spacecraft speed of light in R2 etc).
As I said in the other round, we cannot afford to pour our efforts into space exploration because there are vast issues plaguing the world today. We must address these issues then we can talk about space travel but not before.

http://www.angelfire.com...

Debate Round No. 3
THEBOMB

Pro

I thank my opponent for this debate and their arguments.

My opponent drops the claim; whoever controls space controls the battlefield. Which is another reason to keep the space program alive, for the military?

1.Cataclysmic Events

My opponent has two rebuttals:

a)Type 1 v type 2 civilizations
Besides the fact my opponent has not actually explained what they were, how will this help humanity? The events I described are outside of human control. If Yellowstone decides to erupt nothing mankind can do will stop it. If earth's magnetic poles shift, nothing mankind can do will stop that.

b)Sending man to another planet will take millions of years
My opponent has not backed this up whereas I have shown NASA had the technological capabilities to send people to mars (another planet), as of 2009.

2.Economics

a)Ending hurts the advancement of technology
NASA's space program represents 35% of all academic scientific research in the USA. My opponent has dropped this point.

b)Ending hurts the economy
My opponent has dropped my argument about Florida, which is not based upon a NASA website. My opponents claims NASA lied. But, simply providing an unsubstantiated claim is not proof. They have not proven NASA lied; therefore, their rebuttal is irrelevant.

c)Keeping helps the economy by creating technology
My opponents sole rebuttal is "THIS DEBATE IS ONLY ABOUT THE JUSTIFICATION OF SPACE EXPLORATION. It doesn't matter about their inventions and scientific patents." But, here is the thing, space exploration directly led to these patents. Therefore, it is because of space exploration that these technologies exist. These technologies have allowed companies such as Microsoft and Apple to exist. Unless my opponent wishes to argue Microsoft is bad for the United States economy, space exploration has directly led to the creation of Microsoft. Patents arising from technology needed to explore space are entirely relevant within this debate. Under my opponents logic, all arguments that do not directly pertain to space exploration are invalid, so therefore, my opponents entire case is invalid, as it is based solely upon economics which does not directly pertain to Space exploration, while I still have a few contentions not relating to economics. According to my opponent, NASA's economic influence is irrelevant within this debate therefore, conceding their entire case.

d)Costs of Space Exploration
NASA's budget is a minute percentage of the United States National Budget. At its peak it only represented about 1% of the US Budget. Overall, over its many years, it has spent 400 billion dollars, less than the Department of Defense's Budget for 2009, but, has created so many scientific innovations which affect and sustain the United States economy. The economic cost of space travel is far outweighed by the economic gain. "For every 1 dollar spent on the space program, the United States government makes 8 dollars". How is this bad?

3.Issues in world (my opponent has not provided any more issues so I'll just use the ones from last round)

a)War
This will not be solved by ending the space program. This was dropped by my opponent.

b)Poverty
I addressed this above. Cross-apply my logic here

c)Over-population
Solved with more area, why not another planet? This was dropped by my opponent.

d)Limited Resources
"NASA has the most scientific patents of any organization in the world. To use resources in an economical manner you need scientific innovation. The United Stated should invest MORE money into NASA to allow it to patent technological innovations in this field. They have the most patents. You see these inventions every day. The money and jobs created by these inventions is exponential." This entire argument was dropped by my opponent.
XDebatorX

Con

XDebatorX forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by THEBOMB 5 years ago
THEBOMB
I was wondering why you didnt respond in this debate haha
Posted by XDebatorX 5 years ago
XDebatorX
shoot I thought I had won more day. I lost....
Posted by THEBOMB 5 years ago
THEBOMB
Yep that i do
Posted by XDebatorX 5 years ago
XDebatorX
you reply fast....
Posted by famer 5 years ago
famer
Well pro did say "with a topic to debate". The keyword here is "a" topic. Just any topic for Con to put forth and then they will be able have it their way.
Posted by Maikuru 5 years ago
Maikuru
I miss these things. Generally, Pro would ask Con to present 3-5 different debatable topics and Pro would begin Round 2 with his selection and an opening case. That makes sure that Con does not guarantee an easy win.
Posted by famer 5 years ago
famer
Wouldn't Con be able to just make a resolution that is near impossible for pro to argue against?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by 16kadams 5 years ago
16kadams
THEBOMBXDebatorXTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: conduct for FF. I thought his arguments where better, also he provided many sources, most of which where very credible. His arguments about the economy and future colonies stood in the end. Pro won.
Vote Placed by Marauder 5 years ago
Marauder
THEBOMBXDebatorXTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: ff