The Instigator
LemonSkull
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
RationalMadman
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

Money cannot give you freedom

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/6/2013 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 871 times Debate No: 28948
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (0)

 

LemonSkull

Pro

==Introduction==

I will argue that people cannot gain freedom from money, and that money in most cases restricts individual freedom. I will use a broad definition of freedom, as described by the Merriam-Webster dictionary [1]: "the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants." True freedom must meet all of the criteria in this definition.

==Arguments==

Here are my three main arguments:

1. In order to support yourself with money, you would need certain obligations. There are rare exceptions, e.g. people who win the lottery, or inherit large sums of money. But the vast majority of people need to work in order to receive money. Working is an obligation which forces you to preform certain tasks under certain hours, thereby restricting your "right to act as one wants." One cannot obtain true freedom while working.

2. Money has no real value, but is merely a symbolic entity. Philosophically, one could say that money has a value because everyone agrees it does. It has an imagined value. This value is unstable, as it changes over time and depends upon other people. A sudden inflation, e.g. what happened in Germany after WW1, would render your money useless. Therefore, money can only give you an imagined freedom, which is highly dependent upon other people. This is not true freedom.

3. As a wealthy person, you are most likely in the "public eye" and thus prone to attention. Your actions will be noted by many other people, which is why you are concerned about what you say and how you behave, albeit subconsciously. This limits your "power to act and speak as one wants." People who are wealthy to the point of being recognized by society cannot obtain true freedom.

==Sources==
http://www.merriam-webster.com...
RationalMadman

Con

"The power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants."
As con all I have to do is prove that in a single given scenario money CAN give you freedom.

I want you to explain how money has not given the three 'made up' people, I shall present, freedom...

Person 1) During her Summer holidays, a European woman who owns a very luxurious hotel located in, she chooses to walk around that hotel, in front of many Muslim guests, in next to nothing, to drink at her bar in front of other men and to dress ridiculously inappropriately all the time. When the police arrive to arrest her, the Omani sheikh lets her go free saying that she is their main source of income at this time of year (summer) and that since she financially owns every member of staff and every material object in the hotel she can essentially treat it as her home. Tell me now how anyone of a poorer situation could do the same...

Person 2) A boss tells his secretary to either f*ck him senseless or to lose her job. He is located in Uganda and due to his financial situation could easily pay off the police. He is the woman's only source of income and since he holds many shares in the companies of that entire city he can easily influence employers not to hire her and could even, using money, cause her death that night. As she f*cks him, he then demands that she, unlike usual, wears no pants the next day and that if he wishes to do anything to her, she will let him.

Person 3) A father tells his son that unless he wants to be kicked out onto the streets living off of welfare food and housing he had better do as he's told. Simple yet effective.

Please do enlighten me as to how money is not the sole reason, or at least over 90% of the reason that these people have a ridiculous extent of freedom relative the others mentioned in their scenario.
Debate Round No. 1
LemonSkull

Pro

I will demonstrate how these people have not gained freedom from money.

Person 1) This woman has the freedom to act in any way she pleases. This is not because of money, but rather because of influence. She has a lot of influence because she owns a hotel, which she may or may not have obtained through money. Her personal wealth is irrelevant, but the fact that she owns the hotel is the reason to her freedom. Ownership is not necessarily related to money.

Person 2) Who has the freedom here? The boss or the secretary? Both of them are obligated to preform certain tasks, whether it's writing papers or having sex with people. These tasks deprive the persons of the "right to act as one wants", therefore restricting their freedom. Read my first argument in the introduction.

Person 3) The father gives the boy an ultimatum: either follow his orders or get kicked out. If he choses to follow the father's orders, the boy is not free, because he does not have "the power to act and one wants." If he gets kicked out, he might have freedom. We don't know, because you didn't give enough information. Does he have a job? In that case, he is not free, as demonstrated in my first argument. If he doesn't have a job, or any other obligations, he could very well be free. But not because of money. Money is completely irrelevant in this example.

There you have it. None of these fictional people have gained freedom from money. In fact, the first person is the only one who has true freedom, because of her influence. The second one clearly doesn't. The third one might, but not because of money. I have to admire your imagination while writing these stories, but unfortunately they are rather irrelevant and certainly not supportive of your position.
RationalMadman

Con

RationalMadman forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
LemonSkull

Pro

I am winning this debate.
RationalMadman

Con

RationalMadman forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by RationalMadman 4 years ago
RationalMadman
I meant to say located in Oman for the first one.
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