The Instigator
Wallstreetatheist
Pro (for)
Winning
14 Points
The Contender
Upriser
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Ronald Reagan was a bad president.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Wallstreetatheist
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/7/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,390 times Debate No: 24528
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (27)
Votes (3)

 

Wallstreetatheist

Pro

Resolution: Ronald Reagan was a bad president.

Rules:
(1) Debater must have typing experience and internet access.
(2) Place your arguments and sources inside the debate
(3) Structure the debate in a readable, coherent fashion.
(4) No semantics, trolling, or lawyering.
(5) Must insert one witty quote per round.


Rounds:
(1) Acceptance + Internet High Five
(2) Main Argument
(3) Rebuttal to opponent's main argument
(4) Response to rebuttal + closing arguments + voting issues (one paragraph)


"Full government control of all activities of the individual is virtually the goal of both national parties." -Ludwig von Mises


Definitions
Ronald Reagan: The 40th President of the United States
This guy--> http://img.youtube.com...
Bad: Of poor quality; unsatisfactory


I accept this debate which I have thusly created and challenge those of rhetorical wizardry to a verbal duel. With my hand elevated and ready for forearm pronation, I slap yours in a ritualistic manner. Good luck to whomever accepts, and may the Gods smile upon you during this debate.

Kittens!
Upriser

Con

I accept your challenge.
Debate Round No. 1
Wallstreetatheist

Pro

Thanks for the acceptance, and I'm looking forward to a good debate! :D


Those who assess the quality of presidents are often impressed by communication skills and charisma. Both of those characteristics account for President Ronald Reagan’s standing in several lists of good presidents. However, Reagan, like other presidents should be judged not on charisma, but on how his policies affected the nation and the world during his presidency and over the course of history. The policies were poor.

The “ruler” with which I will categorically evaluate Reagan’s presidency is the criteria of peace, prosperity, and freedom. Peace allows human beings to be free from unnecessary suffering at the hands of other men and lays the foundation for sound economics and the protection of civil liberties. Prosperity increases the standard of living of humans within its scope and of trading nations. Freedom allows a human to exercise his protected rights in any manner he chooses (so long as it does not interfere with the exercise of the rights of others) and is a fundamental aspect of human nature’s desires. Reagan is scored negatively on all of these criteria; thus, making him a bad president.


Peace 1: Increased tensions with Soviet Union

Ronald Reagan increased tensions between the USA and USSR from 1981 to 1985, when Mikhail Gorbachev assumed power in the Soviet Union and dramatically sought to open the Soviet system and to better relations with the U.S., Reagan increased the existential nuclear threat to the republic by reversing Richard Nixon’s policy of détente with the USSR and ratcheting up tensions in several other ways. The high-point of Reagan’s callous anti-Soviet rhetoric was his labeling of the USSR as an “evil empire” and declaring that the Communism be left on the “ash heap of history.” But besides the rhetoric and propaganda, Reagan’s nuclear policy was far different than détente’s goal of “stability;” he effectively ended the agreement “Mutually Assured Destruction” with the USSR by greatly increasing the American arms buildup at an unprecedented rate immediately upon taking office in 1981. In 1983, Reagan delivered a speech that described the Strategic Defense Initiative (later disparagingly referred to as ‘Star Wars’), which brought the US to the brink of a catastrophic war. Reagan was playing with fire at the potential cost of millions of American lives. [1, 2, 3]


Peace 2: Reagan did not win the Cold War

The reality was that the Soviet empire collapsed because of its own poor economic performance and consequent overextension. First, the centrally planned economy, which gave no incentives to produce anything of value to benefit society, was nonviable and was eventually bound to fail, regardless of who the U.S. president was when it began to expire. The Soviet empire would have collapsed independently of Reagan’s economically taxing U.S. military buildup. Second, the Soviets were spending huge amounts on their own military and providing arms and assistance to many of the most economically backward or overly regulated economies in the world: something that their dysfunctional and teetering economy could not afford. Third, all U.S. presidents from Truman to George H.W. Bush played a role in perpetuating the forty-plus year Cold War. [1, 2]


Prosperity 1: Raised Federal Spending

As a proportion of the GNP, federal spending increased from 21.6% in 1980 to 24.3% in 1986; federal expenditures as a proportion of net private product (output of the private sector) grew from 31.1% in 1980 to 34.3% in 1986. Furthermore, Reagan did not have the excuse that Congress added on to his funding requests because his proposed budgets and those that Congress eventually passed were fairly close in dollar total. Federal spending was $590 billion at the end of Carter’s term, but increased to $1.14 trillion by Reagan’s last year, 1988. Despite Reagan’s conservative image, he was more fiscally liberal than Clinton, a subsequent democratic President. A true testament to this sad reality is David Stockman, Reagan’s budget director, who lost many fights over spending, later declared that the “Reagan revolution failed.” [2]


Freedom 1: Instigated the Iran-Contra Affair (which was worse than Watergate)

As bad as provoking blowback terrorism (from Libya), supporting a nation that sponsors terrorism (Iraq), and inadvertently helping spawn terrorists (al Qaeda), the macho Reagan paid ransom, in the form of selling heavy weapons, to a state sponsor of terrorism for the return of U.S. hostages in Lebanon. Iran and the Hezbollah terrorists it sponsored, knowing a good source of revenue when they saw one, just kidnapped addition Americans for more ransom. In his book Firewall: The Iran-Contra Conspiracy and Cover-Up, Judge Lawrence Walsh, the Republican independent prosecutor for the Iran-Contra Affair, noted that Reagan clearly knew he was violating the arms embargo against Iran and the Arms Export Control Act, a statute with criminal penalties, when he authorized weapons sales to Iran in early 1986 without notifying Congress. All in all, a terrible scandal that overrided power, increased the presidency, and decreased freedom. [2]


Over to Con! :)


[1] Kelly Rogers, Jo Thomas, History: The Cold War, 2009
[2] Ivan Eland, Recarving Rushmore, 2009
[3] http://www.history.com...
Upriser

Con

Upriser forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Wallstreetatheist

Pro

Extend my prosecution against the violent, incompetent statist.
Upriser

Con

Upriser forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Wallstreetatheist

Pro

Extend my arguments.

I've won arguments and conduct in this debate.
Upriser

Con

Upriser forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
27 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Wallstreetatheist 4 years ago
Wallstreetatheist
I'll debate you on Reaganomics; it's really the only reason why I don't like Reagan, and it would be nice to use all the argument space to talk about fiscal policy, monetary policy, and other economic policies of the Reagan presidency.
Posted by RoyLatham 4 years ago
RoyLatham
Upriser's account is closed, so this will be a non-debate.

I'll debate you on Reagan if you'd like. You are way off base.
Posted by Wallstreetatheist 4 years ago
Wallstreetatheist
Sure thing, crazy pants
Posted by Contra 4 years ago
Contra
I'll debate you later then WSA.
Posted by Upriser 4 years ago
Upriser
Make this one interesting and challenging debate for a little spice
Posted by Wallstreetatheist 4 years ago
Wallstreetatheist
One day I'll debate for a US President with good policies. I only consider there to be only 4 good US presidents based on my methodology.
Posted by Wallstreetatheist 4 years ago
Wallstreetatheist
I had it restricted until I finished two of my three debates, and then I unrestricted it 12 hours before you accepted. RoyLatham, cirrk, and Contra (coincidental name) would have debated this.
Posted by Upriser 4 years ago
Upriser
Since nobody seems bold enough to debate this, I guess I'll take the stand. Good luck.
Posted by RoyLatham 4 years ago
RoyLatham
@surpy, That's it exactly.
Posted by RoyLatham 4 years ago
RoyLatham
Oh, now I understand. No problem. Carry on.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Contra 4 years ago
Contra
WallstreetatheistUpriserTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's arguments were eloquently worded and were pretty good. Con never responded, so that is why Con loses arguments and conduct.
Vote Placed by socialpinko 4 years ago
socialpinko
WallstreetatheistUpriserTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: What the hell?
Vote Placed by bossyburrito 4 years ago
bossyburrito
WallstreetatheistUpriserTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Lolcatz