The Instigator
TigerTime
Pro (for)
Losing
1 Points
The Contender
ax123man
Con (against)
Winning
18 Points

Quick Debate: Should Libertarians Vote Conservative?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
ax123man
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/9/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,671 times Debate No: 27081
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (4)
Votes (6)

 

TigerTime

Pro

2 rounds, 24h/round. First round acceptance

I will argue Pro.
ax123man

Con

I accept your challenge.
Debate Round No. 1
TigerTime

Pro

My reasons

1. Conservatives is Closer to Libertarianism than Democrats
Conservatives stand for fiscal responsibility, which typically entails far less spending on social programs and therefore less expansion of the state.
Yes, Conservatives push for the expansion of the military, but a strong military isn't necessarily against Libertarianism [1]. For a Libertarian, freeing up private capital is of higher priority than shrinking the military (although that is a goal). Besides, Democrats aren't actually for shrinking the military. Obama intends on expanding it [2]. Given that the military will be expanded regardless of which of the main two parties a libertarian votes for, it makes more sense to at least vote for the side that intends on at least shrinking government expansion on the home-front side of things.

1. The Libertarian Party Will Never Be Elected
On the main page for the Libertarian party, Gary Johnson basically begs for so much as 5% of the vote [3]. Every president since 1852 has been either a Republican or a Democrat [4]. Given this, a vote for the libertarian party is a wasted vote. It's better to settle for one of the big two that actually has a shot at winning, and since conservatism is closer to libertarianism than democratism, especially if Libertarians are running as conservatives a la Ron Paul.

To conclude, since conservatism is closer to libertarianism than democratism and since Gary Johnson didn't have a shot a winning, nor is likely to ever, Libertarians should vote Conservative.

1. http://www.issues2000.org...
2. http://www.politifact.com...
3. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com...
4. http://www.thenews.com.pk...
ax123man

Con

I thank Pro for an interesting (and short) debate. Now to business:

The term Conservative has not yet been defined in this debate, however it is clear from Pro's Round 2 arguments that this debate concerns modern day Conservative politicians in the United States. In addition, it appears Conservative is meant to mean Republican from Pro's statement "It's better to settle for one of the big two". I'll also point out that Pro uses a mix of capital-L Libertarian and small-l libertarian in his arguments, meaning the voter base we are discussing encompasses all libertarians. To make the distinction clear, Libertarians (members of the political party) are a subset of libertarians (believers in the philosophy). Given that small-l libertarians do vote, I think that is a fair assumption. With that out of the way, I'll refute Pro's arguments:
Conservatives stand for fiscal responsibility, which typically entails far less spending on social programs and therefore less expansion of the state.

Me thinks Pro has drunk the cool-aid. While this IS what Conservatives are supposed to believe in, and at one time did, this is not the case in the recent past in the United States. The following source clearly shows that spending has increased more under Republicans than Democrats.[1]. However, since the rate of spending in the last 50 years has accelerated so much, and the Bush vs Obama spending debate rages [2], I'll concede that all we can know for sure is Republicans and Democrats grow government. The statement that Conservatives are more fiscally responsible than Liberals is a myth. Pro's point is refuted.

Yes, Conservatives push for the expansion of the military, but a strong military isn't necessarily against Libertarianism

After reading Pro's source at [1] I fail to see how this supports his position. For Pro, the definition of "strong military", from a spending perspective, apparently has quite a broad meaning. The source Pro references states:

we could realistically reduce our defense budget to as little as $125 billion over the next five years.

Note that this source also states our military budget was $260 billion in 2000. This uses the more conservative "Base DOD" numbers, which grew to $707 billion in 2012 [3]. If you look at the chart at that source, you can see that most of this growth occurred under the Bush administration. To compare Pro's 2000 numbers and the current 2012 numbers, we adjust for inflation so that $707 billion in 2012 becomes $548 billion in 2000. So, based on Pro's own source, "Conservatives" definition of "strong" is $548 billion dollars, while libertarians definition of "strong" is 125$ billion. Pro's point is refuted.

For a Libertarian, freeing up private capital is of higher priority than shrinking the military (although that is a goal)

The cursory reading of lewrockwell.com and mises.org finds articles more or less evenly divided between topics of war, capitalism and liberty. It follows logically that war and intervention leads to reduced liberty. Surely we learned this lesson after 9/11. Ron Paul's message through out his 2012 campaign focused heavily on military policy and war. Pro's point is dubious at best.

Besides, Democrats aren't actually for shrinking the military. Obama intends on expanding it.

Pro seems to be making the assumption that libertarians should vote either Democrat or Republican. I disagree completely as do other libertarian authors[4]. In addition, I've already shown Republicans are spending more than Democrats.

Given that the military will be expanded regardless of which of the main two parties a libertarian votes for, it makes more sense to at least vote for the side that intends on at least shrinking government expansion on the home-front side of things.

Pro again makes the false assumption that libertarians are somehow compelled to choose from one of two "acceptable" parties. If you read enough libertarian literature, one message that permeates the text is the idea of not compromising. When Democrats or Republicans ask a libertarian "what would you rather have, increased military intervention/war or an increased welfare state with reduced civil liberties", this is a false premise. The answer is neither. Pro's point is, at best, dubious and at worse, flat false.

The Libertarian Party Will Never Be Elected".. a vote for the libertarian party is a wasted vote.

Pro assumes that unless a Libertarian candidate is elected, the vote is wasted. However, because elections are often very close, a libertarian turn out as little as 5% would force all politicians stand up and take notice. In fact Ron Paul's influence in 2012 has resulted in the Audit the Fed bill and the Gold Commission's inclusion in the Republican platform. And as I've alluded to already, libertarians have other options. In fact, doing anything BUT voting for the two major parties is the wisest option. This includes not voting at all, as voting itself is an indication of support for government and all it stands for. Pro's point is clearly a glaring oversimplification of reality and ignores the powerful influence a united, small group can have.

As a libertarian, I want to make it clear that Conservatism is NOT closer to libertarianism than modern liberalism/progressivism. Both sides carry dead weight that libertarians want nothing to do with. We simply want to shrink government, period.

Pro's points have either been refuted or shown to be dubious at best. Libertarians should carefully consider their vote independently of party affiliation. When given choices among evils, the best option is to simply not vote at all.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://www.politifact.com...
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[4] http://mises.org...
Debate Round No. 2
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by ax123man 4 years ago
ax123man
In my own defense, I didn't call Pro drunk, although I still accept Billdekel saying it was rude, just to a lesser degree. Also, I kinda feel bad about taking a two-round debate like this. I'm still feeling my away around this site & debating. I see TigerTime's profile says "likes debating" - hopefully that's still the case - no more two rounders though :)
Posted by One_Winged_Rook 4 years ago
One_Winged_Rook
I just want to add too, so that Pro can better understand Libertarians.

We don't vote with Conservatives because we want them to know that we don't agree with them.
They know that we exist and we didn't vote.
If we would have voted for them, that would mean that they believe that we agree with them, but we don't. Even if we don't like the alternative, we can tell them that we support them, we don't.

We want changes to happen, and I think they are going to start finding out that they need us if they want to win to make the changes they want.

We are not going to start lobbiest, we are not going to start giving money to their campaign. We are just going to continue what we are doing until they realize they need us. Once they do, we will give our support. Until then, they're no better than the alternative.
Posted by ax123man 4 years ago
ax123man
well, clearly the second "1" negates the first (just kidding)
Posted by TigerTime 4 years ago
TigerTime
I put "1" twice. i meant "2" the second time :p
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by One_Winged_Rook 4 years ago
One_Winged_Rook
TigerTimeax123manTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con wins for a more indepth analysis. I feel like Pro didn't want that long of a response, so he should have put a shorter character limit.
Vote Placed by RyuuKyuzo 4 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
TigerTimeax123manTied
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Reasons for voting decision: There's definitely still room for contention, but as other have pointed out, by making this essentially a 1 round debate pro basically shot himself in the foot. Con has refuted pro's original argument, and without an additional round for pro to defend his argument I have to give the win to con.
Vote Placed by Billdekel 4 years ago
Billdekel
TigerTimeax123manTied
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Reasons for voting decision: pros argument was that libertarians are economically right wing. Which isn't very good since we're also socially liberal. Conduct against con, he was rude calling pro "drunk"
Vote Placed by RationalMadman 4 years ago
RationalMadman
TigerTimeax123manTied
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Reasons for voting decision: He made more sense.
Vote Placed by wiploc 4 years ago
wiploc
TigerTimeax123manTied
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Reasons for voting decision: This is a two-round debate. The first round was challenge and acceptance, which means there was only one round of actual debate. Which means that Pro never got to respond to Con's arguments. Con made reasonable responses to Pro's arguments, and Pro didn't have a chance to respond to Con's arguments, so Con carries the day. Persuasion: Con. I don't recommend having two-round debates unless you actually argue in the first round.
Vote Placed by Ore_Ele 4 years ago
Ore_Ele
TigerTimeax123manTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro made a poor choice in doing a 2 round debate. This gave Con the ability to refute everything Pro said without allowing Pro to refute anything that Con said. Needless to say, with this poor outlay, Con was fully able to refute Pro and nothing of Con's was refuted.