The Instigator
janecho0408
Pro (for)
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The Contender
crb772
Con (against)
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In the United States, the current income disparities threaten the democratic ideals.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/8/2012 Category: Economics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 720 times Debate No: 20293
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
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janecho0408

Pro

Sorry!! I accidentally posted something else! I'm assuming this is going to be a Public Forum debate.

According to the global Network of Democracy Research Institute, high levels of poverty and inequality not only lower the quality of democracy.

My partner and I agree with today's resolution, "In the United States, current income disparities threaten democratic ideals". Our overall philosophy is that the main goal of society is to try to establish equality. Before we tell you our arguments, we will define some terms. We define threaten as We define democratic ideals primarily as Equality. We feel that Equality includes things like Representative Democracy, equality of fundamental things like education or simply earning more money.

Our first contention is Equality of Opportunities.
Our sub-point A is education. Because the rich can afford to send their children to private schools, the children of the rich are more likely to go on to college and get a good job. According to a research done by the University of Michigan, not only are private school graduates more likely to get accepted to a college or university, but they are also more likely to attain a bachelor's degree. While 79% of the private school students get accepted to a high ranking college or university, only 65% of the public school students attend a college or university at any ranking. Also, while 52% of the while private school student body attain a bachelor's degree or higher, only 26% of the public school student body attain a bachelor's degree or higher. Also, there is connection between one's educational degree and salary. According to US Department of Labor- Bureau of Labor Statistics, the higher one's educational degree is, the higher their average salary will be. Because the educational opportunities are so limited for the poor, the poor will get a lower salary and the rich will get a higher salary, increasing the already wide gap between the rich and the poor.
Our sub-point B is more money. Because the rich can earn more money easier than the poor can, inevitably, the rich will get richer and the poor will get poorer. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and the Economic Policy Institute, when comparing family incomes during 1998-2000 to 2004-6, the poorest 20% of the families' incomes only rose 1.4 percent after adjusting to the inflation, but the richest 20% of the families' incomes jumped, a high amount of 13%. If this continues, the gap between the rich and poor will be so wide that our country is going be run by the few rich people and the poor will never be able to catch up.

Our second contention is Representative Democracy.
Our sub-point A is Lobbyists. Because the rich can hire Lobbyists, people that are hired to convince the Congress to make decisions in their favor, the Congress is only voting for the rich people's, or the big companies', benefit. According to a CNN report by Michelle Singer on Feb. 2009, an estimate of 100 million dollars was spent for the Medicare prescription drug bill and the Congressmen were outnumbered 2:1 by the lobbyists. What makes this worse is that the Medicare prescription drug bill is a bill that basically allows drug companies to raise prices of prescription drugs for medicare patients as much as they want. Also, several congressmen that were interviewed after the voting admitted that the bill wouldn't have passed without the lobbyists that were almost forcing them to vote for the bill. Because the poor are not being represented as much as the rich, one of the most important democratic ideals in America, Representative Democracy, is being threatened.
Our sub-point B is that Money wins elections. A trend that is seen election after election is that the top spenders of the candidates usually win the election. This is threatening representative democracy because if most of the government is comprised of the rich, the poor aren't getting represented. According to Open-Secrets.org, the biggest spender was victorious in 397 of 426 decided House races and 30 of 32 settled Senate races. This shows that the poor definitely are NOT getting represented in Congress, which is, sooner or later, going to result in Representative Democracy.

For these reasons, my partner and I strongly urge a Pro ballot.
crb772

Con

Contention 1:
Inequality doesn't inherently threaten democracy. The simple existence of inequality does not threaten democracy and government action can ameliorate any threats to democracy that inequality presents by developing a progressive tax code that redistributes wealth, by protecting the poor in the political process, by providing financial support for candidates with limited means, and by passing laws that limit the power of political interest groups.

Contention 2:
The US government is a representative democracy and that the US democracy was designed so that elite members of society would be elected to protect the interests of all. As just discussed, these representatives can act in the interests of the poor and also move to protect the personal liberty and individual rights of everyone.

Contention 3:
Capitalism/free markets promote democracy. While capitalism and free markets may promote democracy, there is no evidence that inequality that is produced by capitalism and the free market.Obviously, a democratic society encourages property rights, liberty, and open competition. Inevitably, this leads to income disparities because some people will be more successful than others, and they should be rewarded for that success. It therefore becomes sort of oxymoronic to say that open competition threatens democratic ideals, because it is the same as saying democratic ideals threaten democratic ideals.
Debate Round No. 1
janecho0408

Pro

janecho0408 forfeited this round.
crb772

Con

I am not sure why pro is forfeiting rounds.I can't post my arguments until i hear rebuttals from pro.
Debate Round No. 2
janecho0408

Pro

janecho0408 forfeited this round.
crb772

Con

My made my arguments in the first round
Debate Round No. 3
janecho0408

Pro

janecho0408 forfeited this round.
crb772

Con

crb772 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by janecho0408 4 years ago
janecho0408
What am I supposed to do? This is my first online debate..... I thought it is the same as the real debate at competitions, but without the time limit... Advice please :)
Posted by 16kadams 4 years ago
16kadams
*facepalm* arguments first round. I warned you along with other people other debate.
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