The Instigator
rickjamesbitch
Pro (for)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
Tiresias
Con (against)
Winning
15 Points

Declarations of war should be passed by the military, and only proposed by government, if necessary.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+1
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/3/2010 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,037 times Debate No: 12684
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (4)

 

rickjamesbitch

Pro

Yea.....

I believe that all wars should be declared by a vote in the branches of the military. With this being said, it can still be proposed by the president or congress. If 3/5 of the military votes for war, then war will be declared. This will ensure that the war is for the direct benefit of the american people instead of congress. If we look back, since WW2 most wars have been political instead of for the preservation of our lands. Votes in the military symbolize and ideolize the power of the everyday american to make decisions that Congress only has the power to now.

Challenge if you want. This is a friendly debate, so don't insult me or things like that. I had an experience with that once. So yea, lets do this.
Tiresias

Con

If my opponent will allow me a courtesy, I'd like to summarize his arguments so that I may address them in turn:

Contention: "Wars should be declared by a vote in the branches of the military...If 3/5 of the military votes for war, then war will be declared."

My opponent offers two justifications for this contention:

(1) Doing so will be "for the direct benefit of the american people instead of congress"
(2) Doing so will also terminate the propagation of "political" wars.
(3) And in finality, votes of the military "symbolize and idealize the power of the everyday american to make decisions that only Congress has the power to now".

My opponent must prove his justifications in order for his contention to be valid. However, I will refute his justifications, and in turn negate his contention.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

(1) Doing so will be "for the direct benefit of the american people instead of congress"

Allowing the military to declare war will in no way directly benefit the American people, as "the American people" will be the ones directly fighting in the war. As one of a vast number of consequences, some the "American people" will die from warfare - thus denying them any "benefit" and negating your contention. Furthermore, your assertion that Congress benefits from war is misguided. War is among the most costly of expenditures Congress allows - 1 trillion dollars in the 9 years since 2001 according to the fancy clock shown in my source. [A]. This fact should convince you that war if not directly causing "harm", at very least denies any possible benefit to Congress who would gladly spend that 1 trillion dollars another way. Either way, this justification is negated by establishing both the harm to the American people, and by refuting the assertion of benefit to Congress.

(2) Doing so will also terminate the propagation of "political" wars.

There is no such thing a "non-political" war. Therefore your contention that allowing the military to declare war would end "political wars" is illogical. Your justification is negated.

(3) And in finality, votes of the military "symbolize and idealize the power of the everyday american to make decisions that only Congress has the power to now"

According to the 2010 Defense Authorization Bill passed by Congress, the maximum number of personal funded in our armed forces is 1,410,000. Assuming that the every branch of the armed forces is fully saturated in recruitment (An almost certain impossibility given they have trouble recruiting enough to simply sustain themselves at current levels) the armed forces represent .0046% (1,410,000 / 307,006,550) of the total US population. Therefore your contention that the American military vote "symbolizes and idealizes" the power of the "everyday American" is absurd. You're in effect arguing that this ultra elite minority should have the right to decide whether the other 99.9954% is sent to war. But this is beside the point: The opinion or votes of the American people are neither better represented nor "idealized" by the votes of the American military, the resolution is thus negated.

As all three justifications have been refuted, I look forward to seeing where my opponent takes his argument.

[A] http://costofwar.com...
Debate Round No. 1
rickjamesbitch

Pro

Thank you for accepting this debate, first off.

In my opponents rebuttal, he negated all of my points. However, I feel that he took them differently than I had meant. I am going to revamp my ideals and post them more specifically.

I said that a military declaration of war would benefit the american people, while my opponent said otherwise since they were going to be the fighting the war. My point was to be that the military accepted the fight and possibility of death for the bettering of the country. Besides, they'd be the ones fighting it anyway, so saying it won't benefit them is false. It is a benefit by putting the choice in there hands. To unessesarily quote a game I once played, " Now is the time to choose. Die and live free of consequence, or live and fight your sorrow". FFX. This example may be a little bit out there, but I suppose it meets my point. They can choose, instead of having rich men who won't have to fight choosing for them. They have to fight either way, and we might as well give them the choice. Also, how I said that congress benefits from war, I meant with strengthened relations with foreign governments, not money for themselves. The everyday american has to pay for the war in taxes. If the cause is needed enough, they can make the sacrifice themselves.

I also included in my explanation that this would help end wars just for the sake of politics. Lets look at Vietnam. We had no direct threat from them, but we chose to fight to help France and South Vietnam. Now lets look at WW2. We were attacked by Japan and then threatened by Germany. War should only be used to defend ourselves, not to help others. With the military deciding, they know what will come so they can make a clear choice when Congress can be biased.

My last point was that this act would put war in the hands of the people. My opponent stated that this was absurd on the basis of such a small percentage of US citizens in the military. However, the military is not a tight group of people with the same thought frame, but a group formed by several people of different views. My brother for example is a navy seal. He is an everyday american. Congress, however, are an extremely small elite group of rich people that don't see the opinions of the american often, and when they do they take them differently it seems like.

I have restated my points, I hope they are clearer.

Peace, B***HES
Tiresias

Con

My opponent offered forth three new "revamped" arguments which I will address in the same way as round 1. My arguments still stand though, as my opponent also acknowledged that he conceded those points to me, stating: "In my opponents rebuttal, he negated all of my points".

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

(1) Contention: "My point was to be that the military accepted the fight and possibility of death for the bettering of the country."

Rebuttal: I would argue that without exception in the history of this country war has never generally "bettered" the American people as a whole. The lone contender which inhabits the gray area between general betterment and harm is the Revolutionary War for reasons that are rather self-evident. However, every other war has burdened the American people with enormous costs despite the meager if ambiguous gains: WWII cost 5 trillion dollars (inflation adjusted) [A] and gained us only 813.17 square miles of territory [B] - that's $6,148,775.78 per square foot. As far as I know, the only worse deal for price per a square foot is in Manhattan. The Iraq War will probably end up costing 3-4 trillion dollars [A], and we'll have gained no territory. My point still stands therefore that war does not "better" the American people by and large: indeed, you must provide quantifiable proof that it does rather than throwing the esoteric and slightly Orwellian phrase: "War for the General Good".

(1) Contentions: "Also, how I said that congress benefits from war, I meant with strengthened relations with foreign governments, not money for themselves. The everyday american has to pay for the war in taxes. If the cause is needed enough, they can make the sacrifice themselves."

War generally has not improved our foreign relations around the world. If it had improved our relations as you suggested, then we should be among the most beloved of nations because we quite often find ourselves in fights. Instead we find innumerable video clips like this one disparaging US diplomatic missions for the mere association with US military activities. . One might say that not only are a great many nations suspicious of our motives - justified or not - but also that as a consequence of this suspicion, our military endeavors and our national image are not held in high regard due to our proclivity to fight so unabashedly. As for your last comment about the "everyday American" sacrificing himself if need be for the greater good - again this is rather too Orwellian for me to take seriously.

(2) "I also included in my explanation that this would help end wars just for the sake of politics. Lets look at Vietnam. We had no direct threat from them, but we chose to fight to help France and South Vietnam. Now lets look at WW2. We were attacked by Japan and then threatened by Germany. War should only be used to defend ourselves, not to help others. With the military deciding, they know what will come so they can make a clear choice when Congress can be biased."

This point is entirely misguided. Vietnam was a perceived threat to US interests in Southeast Asia, we weren't helping France or South Vietnam; we were insuring our investments abroad. Furthermore once revolution was deemed inevitable given non-action by U.S. forces, the U.S. military fabricated the Gulf of Tonkin Incident through covert provocations under the purview of the US Defense Department and conducted by the Military Assistance Command, Vietnam Studies and Observations Group (SOG) [C]. This point alone should convince you that the US military does not always act in the best interests of the American public, as it willingly mislead and exploited the American public into allowing it to engage in direct conflict solely to protect US strategic assets under threat from non-friendly regimes.

(3) " My brother for example is a navy seal. He is an everyday american. Congress, however, are an extremely small elite group of rich people that don't see the opinions of the american often, and when they do they take them differently it seems like."

The difference here is that your brother - unlike a Congressman or Congresswoman - is not answerable to me, nor should he be as a member of the military. However, since he is not subject to civilian authority, he should not be allowed to decide for me or my country unilaterally whether we should go to war.

[A] http://articles.sfgate.com...
[B] http://en.wikipedia.org..., http://en.wikipedia.org..., http://en.wikipedia.org..., http://en.wikipedia.org...
[C] Joint Chiefs of Staff, Military Assistance Command, Vietnam Studies and Observations Group, Documentation Study (July 1970), Annex F, Appendix x.
Debate Round No. 2
rickjamesbitch

Pro

You are a worthy foe.

I stated my points, no sense saying them again.

Vote however you choose.

Good day everyone.
Tiresias

Con

Well, I'll go ahead and extend my arguments here since they weren't addressed.

Thank you for the debate.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by rickjamesbitch 7 years ago
rickjamesbitch
I knew i would probably lose this one. I don't really mind. It's just for practice for debate team this year for my high school
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by shadow835 6 years ago
shadow835
rickjamesbitchTiresiasTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Vote Placed by Grape 7 years ago
Grape
rickjamesbitchTiresiasTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Vote Placed by Koopin 7 years ago
Koopin
rickjamesbitchTiresiasTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Vote Placed by LaissezFaire 7 years ago
LaissezFaire
rickjamesbitchTiresiasTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05