The Instigator
roark555
Pro (for)
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The Contender
Godridden95
Con (against)
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0 Points

Free market capitalism

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/12/2015 Category: Cars
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 642 times Debate No: 79660
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

roark555

Pro

I will be arguing in favour of free market capitalism, and con will be arguing against it.
Round 1 is for acceptance, 2 is for opening arguments, 3-4 is rebuttals and additional arguments, and 5 is closing statements. Best of luck.
Godridden95

Con

Hello, thanks for creating this debate!

This is an interesting topic to debate about, since "Free Market Capitalism" is indeed only one form of Capitalism. I will debating to you why free market capitalism isn't the best economic system for a country. I will be explaining to you alternative forms of economics and why they are far superior to Free Market Capitalism.

(Definitions):

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. (Curtesy of a quick google search!)

Free Market Capitalism: A system of economics that minimizes government intervention and maximizes the role of the market. According to the theory of the free market, rational economic actors acting in their own self interest deal with information and price goods and services the most efficiently. (Full Definition in link below.)[1]

I am eager to critique your argument!

(Links)
[1]http://financial-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com...;

-Thank You, Bisking
Debate Round No. 1
roark555

Pro

Thank you for accepting this debate.

So, what is the free market and why do I support it? Well in short, the free market is a system based on private property, and where goods and services are distributed according to the voluntary interactions made by individuals. So for example, barter would be part of the free market, as would purchase, gifts, gambling, charity etc. Whether I buy a burger from McDonald's, donate to habitat for humanity, buy my little sister a doll or trade you my dishwasher for your fridge i'm participating in the free market. But stealing, committing fraud or assaulting others is not part of the free market.

So that's what the free market is. Now, why do I support it? Well, for one thing it's voluntary. Now why does it matter if it's voluntary? It's important in part because lets say I have a pen and you have a pair of sunglasses. I want the sunglasses more than the pen, you want the pen more than the sunglasses, so we trade. Who loses in that exchange? Nobody. Now ex post you might regret trading for the pen, but the principle remains the same. Trade is win-win by definition. Lets take this in the context of an employer-employee contract. Lets say that I'm a lazy bastard and I want somebody to mow my lawn. So I offer to hire you for $5.00 every hour you mow. You agree. What can be deduced from this? Did I exploit you? Did you exploit me? Did we exploit each other? Well the fact is, that if I didn't think my $5.00 was worth you mowing my lawn, and you valued your free time more than the $5.00 you received from mowing my lawn, then this interaction would not have taken place. So the basic principle of trade is that it is win win, and this is essential for the free market.

So if trade is win win, what is the opposite of trade? The opposite of trade is force. Force is win-lose. Force is when a mugger comes up to an old lady and grabs her purse, or when somebody shoots another person etc. Another example of force is when the government enforces certain laws and regulations. Now catching murderers is one thing, in that scenario the use of force is justified. However, in a case where an individual is being payed below the federal minimum wage force is not justified because the contract was between consenting adults.

Lets expand on that example I gave earlier involving you mowing my lawn. Suppose in that case there was a man named Fred who was listening in on our conversation about our contract. Fred, either out of malice for me or a sense of caring about you feels that I should be paying you $9.00/hr rather than 5. So, one day he decides to break into my house, beats me up and threaten to lock me in a cage if I don't pay you more. I think the general response would be outrage. People would think that Fred was just another thug. But let's say that instead of Fred, it was the state. Let's suppose The government passes a law stating that employees must be payed a minimum of $9.00/hr. Since me and you are adults relatively speaking, we decide to disregard the law and continue doing business as we see fit. The government finds out, and they issue a penalty of some sort, be it a fine ( a fancy word for taking your money for doing something they dislike) or perhaps even jail time. And in this situation what's the general response by your average person? They don't have an issue with this. They think that I was simply exploiting you. They think that it was just that the state did what it did, when all I did was replace Fred with the state.

Ultimately all the free market consists of is people voluntarily trading their justly acquired property without coercion. By arguing against this, at what point does it become justified to initiate force against non-violent actors?

These are simply some initial thoughts, I hope to expand more in the succeeding rounds. Good luck sir.
Godridden95

Con

Wow, great argument, now let me give it a shot.

Contention:

A free market is a flawed system. The idea of a free market is to give the people the ability to voluntarily control the market as they please. Volunteerism is of the most importance within this system, based on this idea alone, I agree. However, I do not agree with the "Free" part at all. If given the opportunity, people that climb the class ladder are most likely to stay at the top and further try to detriment the ability of others the reach the top as well (It's like they are kicking everyone off the ladder). Creating a linear class system, other than a circular class system.

Free Market is for small time labor:

Your previous example of the employer giving to the "mower of his lawn" money, a sort of "Win-Win" situation, illustrates what I mean. This is of course valid, but it undermines the scale of actual national economics. Big business owners have thousands, even millions, of workers in today's time and regulation is the only thing keeping them from taking advantage of their workers.

I can go outside in the snow and volunteer to shovel someone's driveway. I only ask that if I do it, I get some form of compensation. They agree to pay me $50 for my work. After I am done, they have a clear lawn and I have 50 bucks. Sounds great right? Yep, but what's wrong with it? Well continue and i'll explain. There is no regulation needed here... We aren't affecting thousands of people, our small exchange is just simple trade. This is only where a Free Market works.

Regulation=Freedom:

Without regulation, a free market society would just turn into an Aristocracy. A dominant few businesses and enterprises would dominate all opposition and replace the need for further competition. The CEOs of those businesses would gain substantial power. Without regulation, those businesses can do as they please, with the wages and quality of the workers in serious danger.

Races of all kinds would be segregated by different businesses for example. A Catholic may not be able to work at a shop based simply on the fact that he is a Catholic. Or a Muslim may not work in a mine simply because he is a Muslim. You see what i'm saying? To make someone do something they don't want to do is Force. To me, force in the form of regulation is a necessary evil. Without regulation and the enforcement of such, businesses would to easily take advantage of their workers.

Governmental regulation is essential to maintain equality and stability within our economy. We installed these so called "forced" regulations because we wanted all people in the world to be able to work without prosecution. I can work for any company I choose (volunteerism) and they can choose not to accept me (freedom), but they of course must have a valid, logical reason behind their declination (regulation). This is called, Responsible Capitalism[1].

That is why Free Market Capitalism, by itself, will not work.

Definitions:

Circular Class System - A system of categorization that allows for each class to be interchangable at the will of the people. Voluntary action determines the position of the people and establishes that even the Upper classes can scrape the bottom. (You can fail and get right back up again.)

Aristocracy - The highest class in certain societies, especially those holding hereditary titles or offices (Upper Class, Big Business CEOs).

Responsible Capitalism - Responsible capitalism is essentially a free market economy, but with a degree of government regulation to avoid the excesses and inequalities of capitalism.

[1] http://www.economicshelp.org...;

-Thank You, Bisking

Debate Round No. 2
roark555

Pro

Thank you for your arguments. I will attempt to address them all, and perhaps expand further upon my main points.
19th century German sociologist Franz Oppenheimer explained that there are two real ways one can gain wealth in the world. One way is through voluntary, peaceful, civilized means, such as creating a product and allowing people to purchase it to mutual benefit, and the other is through coercive, violent means, and the other is seizing the property of others without their consent for your own benefit, creating a zero sum game. These two are known as the " Economic means" vs the "Political means".

So option A is I start up a business, hire people voluntarily, and they trade their labor for my money, and customers exchange their money for my product. I mentioned earlier the principle of trade being win win, because going into the arrangement both parties expect to benefit. If one or both parties didn't think they would benefit, the interaction would not take place.
Option B is rather than interact voluntarily in a civilized manner, to obtain wealth I could steal. I could get elected to public office and impose taxation on hard working people. I Could pass regulations creating a minimum wage, not allowing people to interact freely through voluntary association.
My main point is, in a true free market system one gets rich by trading, exchanging value, not robbing it from other. Leave that to the government, that's their job. One can also get rich by colluding with the government, I.e special tax breaks, favourable regulations, subsidies etc.

" Free market is for small time labor"
No, no it isn't. Whether it's me shovelling my elderly neighbour's snow for 20 dollars, or I'm the CEO of Apple the principle remains the same: in both cases, it is voluntary trade. The workers evidently benefit from the arrangement, otherwise they wouldn't be working there, and I think it's fairly paternalistic to say that we have to "protect" them. They chose to be there.

"Without regulation, a free market society would just turn into an Aristocracy. A dominant few businesses and enterprises would dominate all opposition and replace the need for further competition. The CEOs of those businesses would gain substantial power. Without regulation, those businesses can do as they please, with the wages and quality of the workers in serious danger.

Races of all kinds would be segregated by different businesses for example. A Catholic may not be able to work at a shop based simply on the fact that he is a Catholic. Or a Muslim may not work in a mine simply because he is a Muslim. You see what i'm saying? To make someone do something they don't want to do is Force. To me, force in the form of regulation is a necessary evil. Without regulation and the enforcement of such, businesses would to easily take advantage of their workers."

You seem to think that these businesses have magical powers that I'm unaware of. As I said, in a free market system one gains wealth to the extent that they satisfy their customers. If they start screwing up horribly, people will look to alternatives, and those companies better shape up or be replaced by better ones.
With regards to the segregation issue, first of all throughout history much ethnic segregation was government enforced ( South African apartheid for example). We aren't living in the 19th century. Most people don't think that way anymore. But regardless, so what? It's their business. Should they not be able to hire/do business with whomever they want? And furthermore should there be regulations that people working for jobs cannot refuse a job offer on the grounds of the employer's race, as reprehensible as that may be? Why is it all on the employers?
If it's my house it's my rules. Why? I own my house. I also own my business. Thus, my business my rules, and if you don't like it don't do business with me. Convince other people to do the same. Just don't use violence. People make these kinds of decisions all the time. For example, the fast food chain chick filet donates money to causes that would limit gay rights. Since I am in favour of homosexuals having rights, I choose not to eat there. That doesn't mean I get to go into the restaurant and beat the owner with a club for disagreeing with his stupid views.
" This is called responsible capitalism".
No, it's called a bunch of people violently controlling others. It's the opposite of compassionate, and it certainly isn't responsible.
Looking forward to the next round.

https://mises.org...
Godridden95

Con

Great Arguments, I hope to contradict most of them!

Opening Statement

By definition, a Free Market Capitalist society is one in which there is no rule or regulation that inhibits the growth of businesses. There are no rules, no government regulation, and no guarantee that society would run properly. The economy, itself, is in danger all of the time, because there is no central authority keeping it together.

The people in such a society do indeed have the ability to start a business, pay their workers what they want, and have what ever rules that they please within their business. The problem is that there is no true limit to what they can do. Huge corporations grow crops and make food, whilst also having standards that they must meat in order to sell their product. The government must put these regulations in place to protect us.

Rebuttals

"As I said, in a free market system one gains wealth to the extent that they satisfy their customers. If they start screwing up horribly, people will look to alternatives, and those companies better shape up or be replaced by better ones."

This is entirely possible with regulation, i'm not trying to tell you that the government should completely abolish a Free Market at all. I am simply explaining that there must be a set of rules and guidelines in place to protect the people of the country. Without law, there can be no freedom.

"It's their business. Should they not be able to hire/do business with whomever they want? And furthermore should there be regulations that people working for jobs cannot refuse a job offer on the grounds of the employer's race, as reprehensible as that may be? Why is it all on the employers?
If it's my house it's my rules. Why? I own my house. I also own my business. Thus, my business my rules, and if you don't like it don't do business with me."

These rules have been put in place to stop personal bias from getting in the way of the development of society. People, in any classification, should not be judged based on factors they had no power to change. The people are protected under regulation and under law; no abolition of regulation will change the fact that our people are better off ruled under law, than not being ruled at all.

It is quite apparent that you're not getting what i'm saying. Systems have been created, like the FDA, in order to make sure that the products that these businesses are putting out are indeed safe. If you allow the economy to run wild, it would collapse under the weight of its own prosperity.

"Your whole opening statement..."

Franz Oppenheimer's assessment is true. However, I slightly disagree with his presentation. Regulation isn't violent, we are not talking about Socialism of Communism here, we are talking about why there MUST be regulation in order to have a stable society. Regulations are imposed by government indeed, I do not disagree that businesses would probably try to manipulate it in some way. This is why we have Responsible DEMOCRATIC Capitalism. The responsible part refers to the regulations that are put on businesses in order to stop them from taking advantage of their workers. The democratic part refers to the people being the ones that decide what those regulations are. Society as a whole establishes the rules, whatever the people are satisfied with, goes into law.

Democracy is obviously flawed in some way, but we cannot undermine that it gives us some pretty important modern day principles. Without regulation, companies could have sulfur in our cheese burgers or pay us $0.02 a day. Regulation is what keeps our society going; in a Sociologist's perspective, people are in different social classes and some of those people simply cannot find a high paying job and have to settle with the first one they get. Sometimes my friend, beggars can't be choosers and the people often have to endure treatment that they don't feel benefits them.

"No, it's called a bunch of people violently controlling others. It's the opposite of compassionate, and it certainly isn't responsible."

I disagree friend, Responsible Capitalism isn't violent control, it's the first step to a stable society.

To further explain myself, a free market would lead to corruption, a democratically regulated market would lead to stability.

Definitions:

Responsible Democratic Capitalism: A political and economic ideology that portrays the meaning of regulation that is mandated through public means. Privatization of law making within business is abolished, and society as a whole contributes to the safe keeping of the market. This does not mean that the people can vote for a business to be abolished. It means that all of the people have the ability to work at the business that had been created through the process of voluntary action. (Regulated Free Market)

FDA: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or USFDA) is a federal agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, one of the United States federal executive departments. The FDA is responsible for protecting and promoting public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety, tobacco products, dietary supplements, prescription and over-the-counter pharmaceutical drugs (medications), vaccines, bio pharmaceuticals, blood transfusions, medical devices, electromagnetic radiation emitting devices (ERED), cosmetics, animal foods & feed and veterinary products.

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org...

http://capitalism.org...

http://financial-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com...

Sorry it took me so long, had things to deal with at home.

Thank You,
Bisking
Debate Round No. 3
roark555

Pro

This will have to be relatively short, my apologies.
With regards to the free market having no regulations, this is not exactly true. The market is not some abstract entity, it's you, it's me. We determine the terms of our interaction, and it should be like that for every human interaction. With regards to your statement talking about how there would be no guarantee that society would run properly without government regulation: firstly, I don't think it's anybody's job or right for that matter to "run society". Society is comprised of individuals, and the market is individuals within that society interacting voluntarily. And secondly, there is never a guarantee that " society will run properly". Not to put words in your mouth and correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems that you're implying that people are too incompetent, and would be helpless without the government. But if this is indeed what you are implying, then you have in effect created a self contradictory proposition. " People are incompetent, so we need to elect people to regulate the entire economy."
In your second paragraph, you talk about how without institutions such as the FDA, companies would no longer care about the quality of their food. If it isn't clear why this is pure nonsense, I'll explain why. You are in effect saying that companies make money by killing their customers. Does this even need explaining? Companies don't want a reputation that claims they poison their customers, this they have every incentive to make sure their product is safe for their customers.
I'll give you a hypothetical: suppose it was found out that company A was dumping cyanide in their food supply. What would happen? What would happen is people would look to an alternative. Company B might say " we have rigorous checks to ensure that our meat is not contaminated." Like now, there would be a high demand for food safety, and thus the market would come up with methods to ensure food safety.

"These rules have been put in place to stop personal bias from getting in the way of the development of society. People, in any classification, should not be judged based on factors they had no power to change. The people are protected under regulation and under law; no abolition of regulation will change the fact that our people are better off ruled under law, than not being ruled at all. "

You misunderstand, I'm not saying that if you own a business it is RIGHT to discriminate against people based on their race/gender/sexual orientation. I'm saying that because they own their business, they should have the right to associate with whomever they choose, for whichever reason they want. And that is a two way street. I think that it's immoral for a consumer to refuse to do business with a certain store based off of the owner's race or sexuality, but would you say no, there must be a government regulation forcing people to shop at stores that they do not wish to shop at? I doubt it.
Im only going to be able to address snippets of your last two paragraphs because I'm running low on time.

" the democratic part refers to the people being the one who decides what the regulations are."
What exactly is "the people"? I'm a person, you're a person. And yet we disagree. This abstract called " the people" does not exist, because it implies that each member within the collective are united in their views, when clearly they are not as this debate demonstrates. What you are advocating for is some people forcing their will onto others.

"Democracy is obviously flawed in some way, but we cannot undermine that it gives us some pretty important modern day principles. Without regulation, companies could have sulfur in our cheese burgers or pay us $0.02 a day. Regulation is what keeps our society going; in a Sociologist's perspective, people are in different social classes and some of those people simply cannot find a high paying job and have to settle with the first one they get. Sometimes my friend, beggars can't be choosers and the people often have to endure treatment that they don't feel benefits them. "
I've already kind of addressed the food issue, so I'll skip that. But a similar principle applies to wages. If company A has a starting wage of $7.00/hr. I work there and am in satisfied. Company B says that he'll pay me 8.00/hr, so I go there. Company B did this because it was worth it to him financially, and he felt that I could make more than 8.00/hr for him. That's how wages are determined, by the value of the employee to the employer. That's why you never hear about a minimum wage for CEOs.

And I almost forgot: " Regulation isn't violent." No? Then try not complying with them, and we'll see how nonviolent they are.
https://mises.org...
Best of luck in your closing statement.
Godridden95

Con

No apologies needed friend.

Incompetence wasn't what I was going for. I'm saying that the natural evolution of society ends with the result of a few dominant people gaining power and ruining it for the rest of us.

Rebuttals:

"You are in effect saying that companies make money by killing their customers. Does this even need explaining? Companies don't want a reputation that claims they poison their customers, this they have every incentive to make sure their product is safe for their customers."

This isn't what I was saying, neither was I giving the implication of such. I wasn't saying that companies directly poison their costumers, what I meant was health standards and regulation stop these disasters from occurring. Changes in standards of food are subtle, things like Trans-Fats have been banned because they have been proven to be extremely unhealthy for the consumer. Companies that used this product are no longer allowed to put transfats in their food; this benefits society as a whole. This simple regulation has taken one step further to preserve the health of the people.

"You misunderstand, I'm not saying that if you own a business it is RIGHT to discriminate against people based on their race/gender/sexual orientation. I'm saying that because they own their business, they should have the right to associate with whomever they choose, for whichever reason they want. And that is a two way street. I think that it's immoral for a consumer to refuse to do business with a certain store based off of the owner's race or sexuality, but would you say no, there must be a government regulation forcing people to shop at stores that they do not wish to shop at? I doubt it.
I'm only going to be able to address snippets of your last two paragraphs because I'm running low on time."

These laws are designed to help laborers. I can shop in whatever store I want because what I am doing does not call for regulation. I meant that businesses, when they are hiring someone, should judge the applicants based on merit and not personal bias. This keeps society going, this allows all kinds of people to attain jobs, that in a free market society, they wouldn't have been able to apply. Without a free-market, businesses can still choose who to associate themselves with. Free-Market Capitalism isn't the only form of capitalism, there are many more that allow for free association.

Me shopping at places has nothing to do with economic regulation.

"If company A has a starting wage of $7.00/hr. I work there and am in satisfied. Company B says that he'll pay me 8.00/hr, so I go there. Company B did this because it was worth it to him financially, and he felt that I could make more than 8.00/hr for him. That's how wages are determined, by the value of the employee to the employer. That's why you never hear about a minimum wage for CEOs."

You missed my point here. Society sometimes fails, we all know that, and this calls for people working at very low paying jobs. People with criminal records or people without diplomas have difficulties finding high paying jobs. Most of the time they have to settle with the first company that accepts them, which may not pay the most. Minimum Wage protects these people from having a non-livable income, companies can only pay people $7.25 or higher so the workers themselves are protected from poverty and homelessness. They are given the opportunity to put food on the table. regardless of what job they have.

Some people protest to raise the minimum wage because eventually it becomes unlivable, this is where the democratic principles come in. The government proposes an increase to $10.01/hr and the people collectively vote (including business owners) to set it as the minimum wage. If it fails, then it fails, there is nothing they can do about it, if the majority believe the minimum wage is livable then it will remain livalbe. Without regulation, you would have a massive amount of fluctuation and inequality amongst the working class, this causes economic instability, which eventually causes a collapse.

"And I almost forgot: " Regulation isn't violent." No? Then try not complying with them, and we'll see how nonviolent they are."

Regulation is a necessary evil, we use it to maintain order and stability, protect the working class, and ensure the government is free of aristocratic corruption. If I were to disobey regulation, then I would be given a hefty fine! It is capitalism after all!

Summary:
  • Free Market Capitalism is for small time labor.
  • Regulation preserves the rights of the workers in a society, establishes a set minimum wage, creates institutions for assisting struggling individuals, puts a cap on corporate corruption, protects the health and lively hoods of the consumers, and maintains economic and social stability.
  • Responsible Democratic Capitalism is far superior to Free Market Capitalism because it protects and preserves the rights of all classes in a society.
  • Regulation is a necessary evil.
  • Laws ensure the safe keeping of all races to be allowed to work where ever they want without the bias of others dictating their future.
This was fun, I have always agreed with most principals of Free Market Capitalism. However, I believe there must be some form of regulation in order to protect the rights of the people that work at the voluntarily constructed businesses.

Thank You for your great arguments, let us now be judged by our peers, for they hold the key to both of our victories.

Thank You,
Bisking
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by roark555 1 year ago
roark555
Damn it, I meant to have 5 rounds. Oh well.
Posted by Godridden95 1 year ago
Godridden95
There is a pun in my argument! I said Meat instead of Meet because I was talking about food!
Posted by roark555 1 year ago
roark555
Argument incoming, I haven't abandoned you hahaha.
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