The Instigator
The_Master_Riddler
Con (against)
Losing
10 Points
The Contender
Niwsa
Pro (for)
Winning
14 Points

LD Debate: Citizen's United v. Federal Election Commission ruling undermines democracy in the U.S.

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  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Niwsa
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/13/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,593 times Debate No: 27468
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (36)
Votes (5)

 

The_Master_Riddler

Con

Hello, I am a high school student that wants to practice LD debate and this is the topic. If the challenger is not familiar with the rules or how to structure an LD case, then look on uiltexas.com to find the rules. Anyways, I am not allowed to say my case first, because I am negative. I will, however, introduce my argument in the second round. But I do have one extra rule

Round One- introduction of argument
Round Two- I will introduce my argument and refute; you will refute my argument.
Roound Three- We will both refute each others arguments; after, we will virtually give each other a handshake.
Round Four- You will tell me if I did a good job and what do I need to do to improve my argument. I will do the same.
Also, if you are in the debate team at your high school, then please notify that in the first round so I can give good critcism in the first round.

Additional Rules:
The vote of more reliable sources goes to the person with the most appropriate value, if the same, then settle in a tie.
Niwsa

Pro

I accept my opponent's challenge, however I have a question.

First I'd like to point out that I am a member of my school's debate team, although I participate in Public Forum, not LD.

Anyways, what did you mean by "The vote of the more reliable sources goes to the person with the most appropriate value, if the same, then settle in a tie"?

What is "the most appropriate value" with respect to sources. If you have a specific voting criteria you wan't voters to use you should clarify it.

Thanks, I wish you a good debate.
Debate Round No. 1
The_Master_Riddler

Con

You do know you were supposed to post your argument in that first round. You kind of messed up the entire flow of LD Debate.

LD Debate is the debate upon values, like justice and democracy. Then you would also say how you achieve democracy and justice, or the value of your choice. The person would then tie their value and criterion (the way to acchieve democracy) into the argument.


Our political system was created
so the individual could have equal rights and that is why I negate the
resolution that Citizen’s United v. Federal Election Commission ruling
undermines democracy in the US. I believe that corporations have the same rights
as individuals because according to the definition of corporation, which is a
legal entity authorized to act as an individual
, it can act as an
individual, which is defined as a
person; a distinct indivisible entity; a single thing; a being, instance, or item;
a group considered as a unit
. And because it can act as an individual, it
should have the same rights as an individual because Peter Calvert says in his
book Comparative Politics that
“democracies are states in which… certain basic freedoms, often termed as civil
rights, will be guaranteed to the individual.” According to this debate, democracy seems to be the appropriate value
for this debate. To achieve democracy, we must use the prerequisite value
criterion of equality of rights. My
thesis is this: To achieve democracy, we
must make sure that all individuals, including corporations, have equal rights.
This ruling helps achieve democracy by ensuring that everyone has equal rights
under the First Amendment.

Contention One: Corporations are people.

Let’s apply logic since that is
what LD Debate is mainly about: If a corporation is an entity, and an
individual is an entity, then a corporation is an individual. And if a
corporation is an individual, and an individual is a person, then a corporation
is a person. And philosophically speaking, yes it is a person. Corporations
breathe success just like humans breathe air. If a corporation is not
successful, it will die like a person without air in his body. Think of a
company that is not successful and is still alive.
Exactly, there are none. Now, I can give plenty of examples in which
corporations are people, but I need to read my contentions. So if you want to
learn more about how a corporation is a person, then ask me in the cross-examination
round.

Contention Two: Denying a corporation’s right to donate money to a
politician is segregation.

As I said in my first contention,
corporations are people and if a certain group of people can donate money to
politicians and corporations can’t, then that in itself is segregation. That
undermines democracy. That is why they ruled in favor of Citizen’s United; they
deserve equal rights as citizens.

Contention Three and Four: Congress makes no clarification on what is
speech or who has the freedom of speech.

The First Amendment says this: “Congress
shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the
free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or
the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government
for a redress of grievances.” Nowhere in that does it say what is speech or who
has the freedom of speech. Therefore, anyone has the freedom of speech,
including corporations. Also, that means any legal action can be done to speak
a message. And because donating money to a politician is a legal action, a
corporation can donate money to a politician under the First Amendment without
undermining democracy.

Fifth Contention: Money donated by a corporation has no major effect on
the election
.

During the election, they were
talking about the Citizen’s United case and its effects. But what the news
reporters and others have observed is that the ruling had no major effect on
the election. Mitt Romney had $55 million more dollars than President Obama
from Super PAC and corporation donations, but Obama won the election.

Conclusion:

I close with this: The reason why
Citizen’s United won the court case, the reason why Citizen’s United v. Federal
Election Commission doesn’t undermine democracy because corporations are people
and for one group of people to have the right to donate money to a politician
and corporations don’t is segregation.

Niwsa

Pro

My opponent quoted will appear in italics.

The reality of the Citizens United ruling is that it fails to take into account what our democracy is built on. The democracy of the United States is the precipitated on the idea of one person, one vote. Anything that would muddy the water and make it unclear whether everyone really does have one vote is undermining our democracy.

First, some info on the ruling for readers who are unfamiliar with the decision:

The Citizens United ruling fundamentally changes our elections process, my opponent seems to focus on corporations, but corporations are not the only ones effected by the decision.

Citizens Untied vs. the FEC allows for unlimited donations by Unions, Corporations and outside groups to Political Action Committees or PACs. This is much broader than just corporations.

Contention 1: The Citizens United ruling undermines democracy by undermining the image of our democracy.

In the 2012 Presidential Election most Super Pac's were funded by donations of $25,000 or more [1]. This undoubtedly gives of the impression that those with bigger wallets will be able to steer elections and ultimately the fate our nation as they please, without consideration given to the fact that they no longer have "one vote" per se. The wealthy can now effectively bankroll elections, as they did in November.

The Citizens United decision consequently undermines the image of our democracy by implying that we are no longer equal in elections. This can only result in increased cynicism and distrust, at home and abroad.

Contention 2: The Citizens United ruling undermines democracy by corrupting the political process.

When most people think of American Politics, they think of the national stage, great Titans in the political world pitted against each other, vying for the position of head of the most powerful country on Earth.
In reality, our political system has been engineered with a system of checks and balances to ensure that local politics still matter. The Citizens United ruling has a disproportionate effect on communities and can only serve to undermine democracy.

Imagine a local representative being approached by a wealthy corporation and being pressured to cut property tax rates on the Business Park area the corporation resides in. In an ideal world the representative would make the decision that is best for the community as a whole, if this involves cutting the taxes, he would, if not, then not.
Citizens United steers us away from this democratic ideal by allowing said corporation to approach the representative and force him to cut taxes or create loopholes by threatening to fund his opponent during the quickly approaching election season. They have the means to do so, since Citizens United eliminated any such limits on corporate "free speech". The representative buckles since he very much loves his job and his service to his community.

Clearly this is not the democracy we want to enjoy in America. I have shown that there are two ways that the Citizens United ruling undermines our democracy, by hurting our image and by corrupting the political process. I will now rebut my opponent"s arguments.


My opponent opens his real argument by stating that a corporation

"is a legal entity authorized to act as an individual"

I have no issue with this, but my opponent goes on to state that

"And because it can act as an individual, it
should have the same rights as an individual because Peter Calvert says in his
book Comparative Politics that
"democracies are states in which" certain basic freedoms, often termed as civil
rights, will be guaranteed to the individual. "

My opponent is commiting a non-sequitur (his conclusion does not follow from his premises [3]). Just because corporations are individuals in a dictionary and under some law does not mean they are the same individiauls Calvert refers to in his book, they are not the same individuals guaranteed basic freedoms or civil rights. Corporations themselves do not have a right to bear arms, the individuals that make them up do, however.

I will now attack my opponent"s contentions.

"Contention One: Corporations are people."

"If a corporation is an entity, and an
individual is an entity, then a corporation is an individual."

Non sequitur, a book is an entity but isn't an individual.

"And if a
corporation is an individual, and an individual is a person, then a corporation
is a person."

Non sequitur, my opponent is using a faulty definition of the individual. An individual is something that is existing as a distinct entity [4].

While my opponent does not refer to corporation's individuality under the law, I will mention it here if my opponent attempts to bring it up in the next round.

Even though Corporations can ACT as individuals under the law, that does not grant them personhood by any means.

"And philosophically speaking, yes it is a person. Corporations
breathe success just like humans breathe air."

Irrelevant. Also how do corporations "breathe success"?

"Contention Two: Denying a corporation"s right to donate money to a
politician is segregation."

To segregate: To separate or isolate from others or from a main body or group [2].

My opponent fails to show

1. How Citizens United segregates coporations.

2. How segregation as related to Citizens United hurts democracy.


"Contention Three and Four: Congress makes no clarification on what is
speech or who has the freedom of speech."

My opponent asserts that corporations should be able to donate to politicians because they have a legal right to speech. My opponent does not connect donating to politicians with speech protected under the First Amendment.

Actually, he even says

"Nowhere in that does it say what is speech or who
has the freedom of speech. Therefore, anyone has the freedom of speech,
including corporations."

But does not explain why this is true.

"Fifth Contention: Money donated by a corporation has no major effect on
the election."

"Mitt Romney had $55 million more dollars than President Obama
from Super PAC and corporation donations, but Obama won the election."

Just because Mitt Romney had more money does not imply that corporations had "no major effect on the election".

Corporations were still able to muddy the waters of democracy, who won or who lost is inconsequential to the resolution.

I have shown how Citizens United undermines democracy and have successfully rebutted my opponent"s contentions.

Back to you.

[1] http://www.nytimes.com...

[2] http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...(logic)

[4] http://www.merriam-webster.com...

Debate Round No. 2
The_Master_Riddler

Con

Thanks Niwsa, but since you did not post a value to uphold on your side of the debate, my value overrides. Viewers, please uphold democracy when voting on this debate.
I am in a rush right now so I will attack my opponent's case weakly.
I will first back up my arguments, then I will refute my opponent's case.
Corporation's Individuality under the Law
Mitt Romney says that corporations are in fact people and many people concede to that statement.

http://www.nationalreview.com...


My opponent concedes to my definition and becaue an individual can donate money to a politician and a corporation can act as an individual, then a corporation can donate money.

The Constitution says that certain amendments can be appealed if it hurts the democratic process. Then, they created the 14th amendment saying that everyone has "equal protection under the law".


The Citizens United ruling fundamentally changes our elections process, my opponent seems to focus on corporations, but corporations are not the only ones effected by the decision.
People can still vote the same way so this argument is invalid.

Contention 1: The Citizens United ruling undermines democracy by undermining the image of our democracy


I have just proven that from corporation donations, Mitt Romney had more money, but Barack Obama won.

This statement is invalid.

Contention 2: The Citizens United ruling undermines democracy by corrupting the political process.



Her example just proves how this promotes democracy. It shows how the people in this individual have the freedom to peaceably assemble(First Amendment). To take this away from them will undermine democracy.



Now I am not trying to be a troll, but you did not post a value or a criterion to uphold. Usually, that would be a complete disqualification in the debate, but that would make the debate boring so back to you Niwsa.

Niwsa

Pro

My apologies for not specifically stating as you did that

"According to this debate, democracy seems to be the appropriate value
for this debate."

I believed that it was implied I was accepting that we were arguing on democracy as it

1. Appears directly in the Contention

2. Is stated in my contentions

I will let the voters decide how they wish to deal with this problem (if it is one at all?).

I would like to begin by refuting my opponent's rebuttal and then extend my arguments.

My opponent states

"Mitt Romney says that corporations are in fact people and many people concede to that statement."

I do not contest that Mitt Romney states that corporations are in fact people, but nowhere does my opponent provide evidence, even in his source, that "many people concede to that statement."

My opponent's argument here is unwarranted.

My opponent states that I concede to his definition without stating what definition I conceded to, I did not "concede" to any definitions I accepted a few of them.

Corporations can indeed donate money, I am not arguing against this, we are arguing whether or not Citizens united undermines democracy, not whether corporations should be able to donate money.

My opponent states that my first Contention is invalid because "Mitt Romney had more money, but Barack Obama won."

I have already refuted this piece of evidence as it pertains to the resolution. But what does who won the election have to do with the image of our democracy, just because in this instance Obama managed to win has nothing to with the image of our democracy as I laid out in my arguments in the previous round.

My opponent attacks my second Contention my alluding to the idea that Citizens United promotes democracy or the right to peaceably assemble.

How does Citizens United promote this aspect of the First Amendment?

Again I apologize, I did not realize I had to specifically cite a value or criterion to uphold; I thought that the value of democracy was implied by the resolution and my contentions.

As this is the final round for debating, I extend my arguments as they have not been successfully refuted.

I urge a Pro Vote.
Debate Round No. 3
The_Master_Riddler

Con

Thanks for this debate. I remember that affirmative always goes last and I have a feeling that I didn't win, so this will just be the end of the debate. I urge everyone to vote according to who they believe won the debate. Thanks Niwsa and I can't wait to debate against you again.

*handshakes* Sorry, I didn't do that in the third round.
Niwsa

Pro

Sorry I sortof bumbled around, I'll be more careful the next time.

Thanks for the debate I enjoy debating actual official resolutions from the NFL or elsewhere.
Debate Round No. 4
36 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Niwsa 4 years ago
Niwsa
Thanks again for voting guys.
Posted by Niwsa 4 years ago
Niwsa
Thanks for voting!
Posted by DoctorDeku 4 years ago
DoctorDeku
Yeah, I know that y'all are on the Rawls v. Nozick topic now, but it's still best not to put your case online.
Posted by The_Master_Riddler 4 years ago
The_Master_Riddler
Oh, the debate cycle is over for this topic.
Posted by DoctorDeku 4 years ago
DoctorDeku
Conduct: Pro didn't follow Con's rules.

S/G:

Arguments: Con's constructive was weak with few warrants to legitimize his contentions, Pro made better refutations and constructive arguments as well and Con's refutation in the latter rounds was lacking

Sources: Pro Didn't offer a Value/Criterion framework.

Pro: don't accept a debate without understanding fully what your opponent wants to argue.
Con: It's not a good idea to post your case online.
Posted by Niwsa 4 years ago
Niwsa
It is rather similar, but Texas runs on a different schedule than the NFL does, which is why they have this resolution now.

Please vote!
Posted by ROwens 4 years ago
ROwens
I'm in LD, too, but isn't this really similar to the PF topic for January? Our LD topic concerns healthcare until December, and Jan/Feb is the rehab vs. retribution.
Posted by futurelawyer7 4 years ago
futurelawyer7
Hey i really need help with my debate against gay marriage... im only 14 and need help so can u help by commenting on this and giving me some evidence cause i am almost clueless! thanks
Posted by Niwsa 4 years ago
Niwsa
It's late I'll get to this tomorrow.
Posted by Niwsa 4 years ago
Niwsa
We've decided we're going to stick with this debate.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by Raisor 4 years ago
Raisor
The_Master_RiddlerNiwsaTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 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 Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: The "logic" used in the nc was invalid, but that wasnt mentioned in the debate so I am not voting on that. The only real point of contention in this debate seemed to be whether corporations were people and on that front I think pro did a better job arguing his case.
Vote Placed by Stupidwalrus 4 years ago
Stupidwalrus
The_Master_RiddlerNiwsaTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 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:25 
Reasons for voting decision: Countering both utahjoker and tennis47. Neither of those rfds are adequate.
Vote Placed by utahjoker 4 years ago
utahjoker
The_Master_RiddlerNiwsaTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 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 Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: better reasoning and got to the point faster
Vote Placed by DoctorDeku 4 years ago
DoctorDeku
The_Master_RiddlerNiwsaTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 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:34 
Reasons for voting decision: Comments
Vote Placed by tennis47 4 years ago
tennis47
The_Master_RiddlerNiwsaTied
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 Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:22 
Reasons for voting decision: 'Cause I said so!