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The Contender
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Paper Money Should Be Eliminated

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/15/2014 Category: Economics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 920 times Debate No: 63290
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
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The first round should be a brief overview of your view on the target statement. The second round should contain an organized and sequential list of supporting arguments. The third round should contain rebuttals to your opponent's arguments. The final round should be dedicated to your conclusion and thoughts on each debater's content and performance.

I think this should be a fun and original debate. I'm interested to see how it goes!


The economy is capable of relying on a system that exclusively uses credit cards. Paper money invites unchecked crime in a variety of ways. These crimes would prove to me much harder, if not impossible, to commit using a credit card system.


I accept this debate. And since Pro is trying to to prove that paper money should be eliminated Burden of Proof is on the side of Pro.

Paper money is helpful in places that accept cash only, as some stores only accept cash only. Paper money also triumphs over coins since they are easy to manufacture.
Debate Round No. 1


Allow me to clarify my opening statement. I contend that the elimination of cash (paper money and eventually coinage) has several advantages. Instead of cash, I suggest a system where only credit and debit cards are used.

The following items are some of the benefits of a cashless society:

Item 1: A significant reduction in crime.

The majority of crimes committed require the use of cash because exchanges made with cash are untraceable. In fact, it"s practically unheard of for a criminal to conduct his business with the use of a credit card; a simple investigation of his transactions would trace everything back to him. Imagine the following crimes being carried out with the use of a debit card: drug trafficking, small illegal drug purchases, prostitution, gambling, blackmail, extortion, purchase of illegal weapons and guns, etcetera. I simply listed all of these crimes without further explanation for the sake of brevity, but, inarguably, each one of them is a serious criminal act that would certainly be crippled without the use of cash.

Item 2: Terrorism and gang activity.

Since gangs and terrorists rely on anonymity, it would be very difficult for gangs and terrorists to operate. Instead of a suitcase of unmarked bills, any illegal transactions made would be paid for with an electronic device that would be traceable. Any money that a gang collects or exchanges would need to be stored in an account, not in a mattress or in a box buried underground.

Item 3: The Underground Economy.

Every year, the IRS performs a complex estimate on the amount of unreported income tax in the United States. In 2011, the IRS reported $285 billion in income collected, but not claimed. This accounts for 18% of income tax revenue. An income can be unreported if it is not in the system, specifically if the income is collected in cash. Cash-run businesses claim an income that is smaller than what they actually took in. Since their business is conducted in cash, it is extremely difficult for the IRS to audit. The tax gap issue is getting progressively worse each year as more and more people and businesses decide to cheap their taxes. This puts other honestly run businesses at an economic disadvantage. Abolishing cash would significantly decrease the prevalence of this illegal enterprise, consequently, allowing a smaller overall tax structure.

Item 4: Fraud.

It is well known that many of our social services such as welfare, unemployment, and social security are corrupted by fraudulent applicants. For instance, there is a growing number of American that work-off-the-books. They work for an individual or business that pays them in cash in lieu of formal employment. These types of employees do not pay an income tax and are eligible for unemployment aid. A no-cash system would not allow this to happen.

Item 5: Undocumented aliens.

Any undocumented aliens need to have an account in the United States to be paid. Not being able to be paid in cash would mean not being paid at all, thus, deterring them from immigrating illegally.

Item 6: Counterfeiting.

According to the USDOT, there are 70 million US dollars in counterfeit notes in circulation. The secret service devotes a large amount of its time and resources performing anti-counterfeit tasks.

Item 7: No more physical theft or misplaced money.

According to the FBI, in 2011 $38 million was robbed from banks alone. Now take into account muggings and home invasions and you have yourself a whole lot of money stolen annually. If you have no cash, you won"t need to worry about it being robbed (physically) or lost. Keep in mind, physical money can be destroyed, on purpose or otherwise. This wouldn"t be a concern if there was no cash to lose.

Item 8: The manufacturing and handling cost.

According to the US mint, tax payers lose about $100 million in the production of pennies and nickels every year. The Bureau of Printing and Engraving claims that they spend roughly $820 million a year making paper money; the overwhelming majority of which is $100 bills, no less. These are manufacturing costs. Now throw in the cost to distribute and circulate, to protect, and to manage cash. A cashless system would not have these expenditures.

Item 9: Political corruption.

Since the beginning of government, politicians have been swayed and manipulated through bribery blackmail. In a cashless system, any and all unethical payments to government officials would be traceable by the IRS. Backroom deals with lobbyists and criminals will no longer be secretive.

I would not recommend, or expect, a cashless system to be implemented entirely overnight. I would advise a phase-out strategy where denominations are discontinued gradually over a set period of time. This process would begin with $100 bills and continue until cash was completely removed from circulation.

I could not post my sources due to the character restriction. I can provide them in the comments if my opponent allows.


IronCurx forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


jimboslice22 forfeited this round.


IronCurx forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


I'm disappointed that this debate ended up becoming quite deflated. I was looking forward to hearing con's argument.

It's difficult for me to prepare a conclusion for this debate under the circumstances. If anybody would like to pick up where my opponent had left off, feel free to inbox me!


IronCurx forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by cheyennebodie 3 years ago
The main drawback to that is then government would have access to all our privacy and can do what Greece did. Just go in and TAKE OUR WEALTH TO SATISFY ITS ADDICTIVE BEHAVIOR TO SPENDING OTHER PEOPLES MONEY.
Posted by Pfalcon1318 3 years ago
@Emilrose, not really. Credit cards and debit cards simply store a particular value of money. The fact that there is paper money doesn't really matter, as the paper money really has no value of its own. It only has value because, in most countries, stores have to accept it.

It is feasible to resort entirely to cards, or revert back to commodity currency, where the paper money signifies the value of something else. I just don't think PRO will be able to give very good reasons to do away with paper money. I will be watching this with some degree of interest though.
Posted by Emilrose 3 years ago
It's "paper money" (notes) that enables the use of credit cards.
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