The Instigator
foresight
Pro (for)
Losing
5 Points
The Contender
scissorhands7
Con (against)
Winning
27 Points

McCain's plans for, taxes, heathcare, war, and entitlements are detrimental for the middle-class.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
scissorhands7
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/12/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,411 times Debate No: 5697
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (5)

 

foresight

Pro

John McCain's proposed plans for taxes, healthcare, Iraq War, and entitlements will ultimately be detrimental for all persons who make less than $250,000. In effect the totality of John McCain's planned agenda for the USA will erode the middle-class by redistributing more wealth to the top 1-5% of America. His plans for taxes, healthcare, Iraq War, and entitlements are the components to this end.

I will allow my opponent to make his statement first. Giving reason's as to how McCain's plans for taxes, healthcare, Iraq War, and entitlements (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, etc...) will actually benefit the middle class and not just the top 1-5% of the population.
scissorhands7

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for an interesting debate subject and would like to keep the following mannerly and factual.

As I do suppose, my opponent has allowed me to have the resolution with his provided topic. He will, of course be responsible for the refutation of my resolution, and not the other way around. In order to decrease extent of this argument I must ask my opponent to focus on the following resolution.

[Resolution]

It is Resolved: John McCains tax plan, healthcare plan, and his views on Social Security will not be detrimental to the current Middle Class. Additionally I resolve that the totality of John McCain's plan will not redistribute more wealth to the top 1-5% of America.

[Definitions]

Middle Class - In a poll conducted by CNN in 2003, 92% of all surveyed considered themselves to be of the middle class.
One could consider themselves as the "Middle Class" for a wide variety of reasons. However I think my opponent and I can agree that 92% of the United States is not the middle class.

Therefore for the purposes of this debate I define the middle class to be households earning between 80,000 and 40,000 dollars.
http://www.census.gov...

The reasons for these figures are shown in the spreadsheet done by the U.S. Census. I define the middle class to be the middle 33% Americans. I have adjusted these figures for inflation.

Redistribution - To take money from an original source and distribute the money to a source that did not previously have said money

Income redistribution refers to a political policy intended to even the amount of income individuals are permitted to earn.

[Main Points - and Further Explanation]

In my resolution, I have two main points (As per my opponents request) for my opponent to refute.

1. "I resolve that the totality of John McCain's plan will not redistribute more wealth to the top 1-5% of America."

As provided by opponent, he has defined John McCain's Plan to consist of: "taxes, healthcare, and entitlements"

A. --Taxes--

A middle-class family making $66,000 a year would see their taxes drop by $319 a year under McCain's proposal.
http://www.salon.com...

Talking strictly taxes, individuals residing in the middle class would see a tax decrease. Unless my opponent can show otherwise, gaining money in no way is negative and furthermore is far from detrimental.

B --Healthcare--

John McCain plans to give a 2500 tax credit for individuals, and a 5000 tax credit for households. This includes the middle class.

When observing this plan, I note no negative effects on the middle class. In no way receiving 5000 or 2500 dollars that was previously not held before, is considered a negative effect on the middle class. Additionally this plan will negatively affect those who previously hold healthcare plans by disallowing employers to deduct the cost of their health care plans from their taxes. This will negatively affect people who receive their healthcare from their employer.

The McCain campaign says only workers with "gold-plated" health programs would do worse. An independent analysis from the nonpartisan Urban Institute confirms that: "In general, lower-income people with health insurance would receive benefits from the credit that would be well in excess of the value that they receive from today´┐Ż€™s tax exemption. The gains are much smaller for higher-income people."
http://www.politifact.com...

--Entitlements--

Social Security
Invest a portion of the budget surplus into the Social Security trust fund.
McCain "believes comprehensive structural reforms are needed, but that current beneficiaries and participants [should] receive the benefits they were promised."
Source: Project Vote Smart, 1998, www.vote-smart.org Jul 2, 1998

Option to invest 20% of payroll taxes in private accounts
McCain will present today his first comprehensive plan for apportioning the spoils of the nation's current prosperity, calling for. a program to shore up Social Security through the establishment of individual retirement accounts. McCain also specifically allocates money to help Medicare, which like Social Security faces a financial shortfall as the population ages. He calls for workers to have the option of investing at least 20% of their Social Security payroll taxes in private accounts.
Source: New York Times, p. A21 Jan 11, 2000

Look, what Americans need is some straight talk. Every man, woman and child in America needs to know it's going broke, and we've got to do the hard things. We've got to fix it for the future generations of Americans. Don't we owe that to young Americans today? I say we do. It's got to be bipartisan. And you have to go to the American people and say we won't raise your taxes. We need personal savings accounts, but we got to fix this system.

Source: 2007 GOP primary debate in Orlando, Florida Oct 21, 2007

So McCain supports fixing social security and then providing private investment opportunities. I fail to see where this produces a negative impact on the middle class.

Medicare provides healthcare to people age 65 or older, I fail to see how this has an impact on the middle class.

Medicare focuses on lower class americans and americans with disabilities, children, pregnant mothers, etc.

Little of which fit into the middle class. So I fail to see where Medicaid/Medicare/Social Security are relevant in this debate.

2. "Additionally I resolve that the totality of John McCain's plan will not redistribute more wealth to the top 1-5% of America."

I would like to remind my opponent that no redistribution in income (especially from the Middle Class to the lower class) would occur.

Since no taxes are to be increased on the middle class, it is impossible to conclude that redistribution of wealth will occur. Wealth cannot be redistributed (as my opponent wrongly inferred) from the middle class to the upper class unless taxes are steeply increased on the middle class and greatly reduced on the upper class (Which is certainly not the case).

I would like to thank my opponent for his interesting parameters and would like to politely ask him to adhere to the resolution as is shown above. I look forward to my opponents primary refutation and would like to send him my respects.
Debate Round No. 1
foresight

Pro

I dispute my opponents claim that the middle class pertains to the $40-80,000 annual income range. The term middle class does not have a definitive definition. The term middle class does have some ambiguity to it. My opponent's use of the data from the census and its application to a normal distribution is impressive, however, I feel that 33% is far to low of a number.

The middle class can be divided into the Upper and Lower middle class. My opponents 33% only accounts for the lower middle class (LMC). The Upper Middle Class (UMC) is about 15% of the population. UMC members make above average salaries and are societies managers, architects, and other professionals. Although UCM members earn more than the LMC members does not put them into the top 1-5% of the population and there for should be included into the definition of Middle Class. http://en.wikipedia.org....

As a general rule people making less than $250,000 annual salary and above the mean average salary are within the UMC. The number $250,000 is the standard measure because once you break past $250,000 you are within the top 1-5% of the population.

Opponent: "Since no taxes are to be increased on the middle class, it is impossible to conclude that redistribution of wealth will occur. Wealth cannot be redistributed (as my opponent wrongly inferred) from the middle class to the upper class unless taxes are steeply increased on the middle class and greatly reduced on the upper class (Which is certainly not the case)."

First let me say that John McCain's tax policy is an extension of and expansion of the Bush tax policy. Of course Bush tax policy is that of Republican policy so it is easy to understand why McCain is adopting the same tax ideologies. Therefore McCain's tax policies will have the same if not more dramatic effect on redistribution of wealth. That being said, here is some real world data to demonstrate the effects of a tax policy which allows huge tax breaks for the top 1-5% of the population while offering a mere $319 for the LMC. In a blog by Jared Bernstein (google him if you do not know who he is), he writes, "In 2001, when the richest one percent of households held 18% of all income." This is the year Bush took office and implemented the famous Bush Tax Cuts, which McCain will extend and expand. In 2006 (year the most recent data exists) what do you expect happened? Did income distribution to the top 1% (yes 1% not 1-5%) increase, decrease, or remain the same like my opponent believes is what will happen?

If you guessed it to remain the same and this is your final answer, sorry you did not win who wants to be a Millionaire.

"The most recent data show that in 2006, 23% of all income is held by the richest 1%, the highest level on record but for one year: 1928." (http://www.alternet.org...'s_hands/). So as you see the effect of that tax policy does exactly what it is designed to do. Keep more and more of the nations wealth in the hands of the top 1-5% of the population in hopes of a trickle down effect.

A. Taxes

My opponent is right that taxes will drop by a dismal $319. Now the fact that people will have to pay less taxes is in itself a positive, but that does not represent the totality of John McCain's tax plan.

First of all John McCain wants to lower taxes for the top 1-5% substantially, allowing giant corporations and millionaires to keep millions and even billions more in the hopes of passing those savings on to customers in form of lower prices and in to workers by increased wages. Look at the Oil industry. We can see how they benefited from similar tax cuts with record profits quarter after quarter, but have not helped to lower the price of gasoline on consumers. Recent data on wages for anyone not in the 1-5% range actually have their wages falling or raising at a lower pace than inflation. What does this mean for the Middle Class? Well the middle class is having to spend less since either their wage is falling or not increasing in pace with inflation. This lowers the ability for the middle class to purchase the things they need and McCain proposes throwing $320 at them to fix the problem. That is $26 extra a month for families. What can the anyone do with $26 a month?

B. Healthcare

John McCain plans to give a 2500 tax credit for individuals, and a 5000 tax credit for households. This includes the middle class.

Well considering the average cost of a family health plan today is $12,000. We can see how a mere $5,000 tax credit wont cover the bill. Not to mention the fact that McCains proposed health plan will strip away state laws mandating consumer protection laws like covering pre-existing conditions and cherry picking customer. More and more insurance companies will move to the states with lest customer protections lowering the standard and quality of health insurance. The middle class must work to survive and nothing is more important to an individuals ability to work than their health. Just like banking, deregulating the health industry only benefits big corps not the American Middle Class.

C. Entitlements

"Medicare provides healthcare to people age 65 or older, I fail to see how this has an impact on the middle class."

Well since most Middle Class american will one day be 65, medicare does impact them. Middle Class Americans do not have the pleasure of a luxurious retirement like the top 1-5% of the population does. They depend on the medicare system to help them stay afloat in their latter year. McCain plans to cut spending to medicare by a trillion will mean more and more middle class americans will be left to fork over more and more of their meager income to the health and pharmaceutical companies, who receive millions and billions in tax savings.

"Option to invest 20% of payroll taxes in private accounts"

That option was proposed by Bush. This plan puts American's money at risk on the stock market. The recent happening with which is enough to persuade anyone that such a route is dangerous and unreliable at best.
scissorhands7

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for his challenging response and would like to address his issues in a clear, concise manner.

My opponent begins his primary refutation with the disputation of the definition of the middle class. While this is a great place to start, I would like to respectfully call to his attention that this debate is solely about McCain's tax, health care and social security plans having a "detrimental" affect on the middle class.

My opponent then seeks to broaden the definition of the middle class to mean anyone who makes from 40,000 to 249,999 dollars a year. I would like to bring to the awareness of voters not to be confused by this interpretation of the "Middle Class" My opponent would like you to believe that:

The "Lower Middle Class" (33% of the population) + The "Upper Middle Class" (15% of the population) = The Middle Class (Being supposedly 48% of the population).

However my opponent has made the dangerous (and incorrect) assumption that 48% of Americans fall into the 40,000 dollar to 249,999 dollar salary range. As is shown in my information (that has gone un-refuted by my opponent)

48% of the population (starting at 40,000 dollars) makes approximately 40,000 to 110,000. Not 40,000 to 249,999 dollars as my opponent has incorrectly inferred.

So until my opponent can clear up his true refutation of my definition of the middle class (which I kindly suggest he not do in the closing rebuttal of this debate), I will be generous and will accept his previous range of 48% of the population being those households that earn anywhere from 40,000 to 110,000 dollars.

I additionally do not, and would like to suggest that voters do not, accept wikipedia as a valid source in this argument.

Next my opponent goes onto refute the issue of wealth redistribution. His primary argument that McCain's tax policy is redistribution (See definition above) is to link him to the current unpopular president, George Bush. Again I would like the voters to be aware that this debate is strictly this:

"It is Resolved: John McCain's tax plan, health care plan, and his views on Social Security will not be detrimental to the current Middle Class. Additionally I resolve that the totality of John McCain's plan will not redistribute more wealth to the top 1-5% of America."

No where in this resolution (or in my opponents parameters for that matter) does it state that this debates purpose was to show the resemblance/dissemblance of John McCain to George Bush or John McCain to Barrack Obama.

This debate's purpose is to analyze the effects of John McCain's tax, health care, and social security policies and to determine whether they be detrimental to the middle class.

Therefore I would like to politely suggest to my opponent that he leave out comparisons of John McCain to other political figures unless they are strictly relevant to the resolution.

Next my opponent goes onto state that: "a blog by Jared Bernstein (Google him if you do not know who he is), he writes, "In 2001, when the richest one percent of households held 18% of all income."

Well I don't doubt that Jared Bernstein is a brilliant writer, his blogs and his factual evidence (unless cited by a repudiated source) are to be left out of this debate. Blogs and opinions of writers are to be kept out of this debate unless they are backed by information. My opponents examples add nothing to the content of this debate and further confuse the reader as to the true nature and substance of the debate.

Next my opponent states a source (that is a Left - Leaning "News-Blog Video Community") that states that the richest 1% hold 23% of the US income. I again do not see the relevancy to the refutation of the idea that wealth redistribution is occurring. I also do not count this article as a valid source. However if I did, this information would not be relevant at all seeing as how it provides no information that wealth >>>>redistribution<<<<< (and I encourage all voters to refer to the undisputed definition in (R2)) will occur under John McCain's Tax Plan.

Next my opponent continues to the issue of taxes.

A --Taxes--

I would like to start off by stating that $319 may seem like a "dismal amount" however to many people, that is a significant sum. When you consider that the average household earning $50,000 currently pays $6,698 in tax, and you add the 5,000 household tax credit. You can easily see that the middle class household pays only $1379 in tax that is not refunded directly to them.
http://www.moneychimp.com...

Next my opponent again switches the focus of the argument to the top (1-5%) which seems to be a common theme he is attempting to instill. However again, I would like to remind the voters that this debate is based on the middle class.
Additionally my opponent brings up a completely irrelevant issue that lacks both any substance both factually and logically. It does not pertain to the core argument. If my opponent wishes to make a point that McCain has tax breaks that in some way give oil companies large tax breaks that have a detrimental impact on the middle class then I would like to ask him to provide more substance and information instead of rhetorical questions with no backing to them. I also don't understand the reason behind subtracting 300 dollars due to the record profits of the oil industry. Both of which have absolutely have nothing to do with McCain's tax policy, or the current presidents for that matter.

B -- Health care --

I'm aware of what the average cost of a family health plan is. The point of this debate isn't to show that McCain's plan doesn't foot the entire bill of National Health care, but that it does make it more affordable and is not "detrimental".

Middle Class Americans who are currently uninsured would have 5000 to pay for health care, making it significantly more affordable. Additionally the average employee who is covered by their employer pays $8,824. This tax credit would allow the consumer to have to pay much less (approximately 2000) then currently if their employer stopped covering them or if their employer continued to cover them, then they would have to pay 3,824 for a family plan both of which are improvements to the current system.
http://www.nytimes.com...

I do not see (nor have been shown) any factual evidence supporting that this plan will "only benefits big corps not the American Middle Class"

C. Entitlements

Many presidents will come and go before most of the middle class reaches retirement. Additionally you still have not shown how McCain's policy on entitlements negatively impacts the middle class. I would like to remind voters that I do not have the burden of proof. By making the resolution my opponent does and must prove that McCain's policies have a negative impact. Something which of yet he has done.

I do not see how the >>>option<<< to invest in private accounts (plural meaning many different kinds including Treasury Bills, Money Markets, Bank Accounts, Bond Markets, Stock Market) is detrimental seeing as how most Americans do so through 401ks. Additionally I ask you to look at the long term historical growth which is currently between 10 - 9% of the S&P 500 well above historical inflation.
http://stockcharts.com...
http://www.simplestockinvesting.com...

I would like to thank my opponent for his well thought out debate and would like to politely request that in the future he adhere more strictly to the resolution and use more factual evidence. I would like to send him my respects as a debater and thank him for a challenging rebuttal. I look forward to his closing arguments.
Debate Round No. 2
foresight

Pro

foresight forfeited this round.
scissorhands7

Con

It is very unfortunate that my opponent was unable to make a closing argument. However if he is reading this I would like to send him my respects and wish him well for the future.

I would like to sum up this debate by saying:

My opponent (who has the burden of proof) has not shown any of his arguments, how McCains plans are detrimental to the middle class with any factual information. I have given illustrated examples of why McCains plans are beneficial to the middle class. Since no evidence or arguments were given showing how McCain's plans are detrimental to the middle class, or that wealth redistribution will occur, I urge all voters to vote CON.

I would appreciate reasons for your votes.

Again I would like to thank my opponent for a rousing debate subject, and would like to send him my reguards. Its unfortunate that you missed this round.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by constitutionfirst 8 years ago
constitutionfirst
I would presume that "middle class" is defined by how taxes are assessed
Posted by scissorhands7 8 years ago
scissorhands7
Please dont post comments directly criticizing the debate and adding additional information until after the debate has ended. If you would like to make positive one liners, this is acceptable, however if you could refrain from injecting personal opinions until after the debate is over, I would appreciate it.

This wasn't meant to be snide, rude, jerkish etc. This is just so the debate can be between me and my opponent until it is over.

For more information go to www.debatef.com and read the ettiquette section.

Thanks a lot for your comments though, I seriously wasn't trying to bag on you.
Posted by Leftymorgan 8 years ago
Leftymorgan
Sounds to me like the outline of the beginning of this topic is more towards Barack Obama than John (can't we all just get along) McCain. He made a very profound comment to Joe the plumber just before the last debate that bares this out. So before you climb all over McCain, you need to check your facts and see that the other side is planning to not only tax those that make $42,000.00 or more a year, but give it to those that won't get off their fannies to begin with.
Posted by symphonyofdissent 8 years ago
symphonyofdissent
I don't get what the actually debate resolution is in this round. Clear that up and I would be interested in accepting it maybe.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 8 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
What's wrong with putting a socialist at risk of violence? He puts everyone else at risk of violent seizure of property... it's callled a tax :D
Posted by Rezzealaux 8 years ago
Rezzealaux
How can he lose control if he never had it?
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by merlinator 8 years ago
merlinator
foresightscissorhands7Tied
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constitutionfirst
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