The Instigator
mrjpb104
Pro (for)
Losing
6 Points
The Contender
xpakamanx
Con (against)
Winning
9 Points

Should the US focus on paying off the national debt before focusing on reforming social services?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/8/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,079 times Debate No: 1556
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (5)

 

mrjpb104

Pro

The government is plagued by the current national debt, which stands at approximately $9 trillion. At this rate, it would take decades to pay it off if every American paid a penny a day. I believe it is wrong to tell people that new programs will be instituted and that programs will be reformed if there is no premise for it. Where will the money come from? We will have to eventually confront this, either with a tax or a complete overhaul of the system. Every day it increases and plagues all Americans, from Bill Gates to the hobo on 5th Avenue in NYC. I think we should focus on fixing this problem before we pass it on to the coming generations.
xpakamanx

Con

OK my opponent isn't completely clear as to what it is he is advocating, but from what I get from his opening statement, he suggests we should fix the debt before we engage in reform of social services.

There are really three arguments that I offer to start this debate.

First, there is no reason that reforming most social services is ultimately going to cost us any money. We currently have a budget set aside for such social welfare programs. The only program that is in dire need of repair currently is social security. There are a plethora of solutions that can solve the social security mess and that are cost effective.

Second, there is absolutely no reason offered by the opposition as to why we have to fix one before the other. I contend that we can work on both problems at the same time. Our government has the ability to multi-task, if not we wouldn't be where we are currently.

Third, and finally, the money to fulfill the needs of balancing the debt and reforming social services is there. We are fiscally irresponsible in ho we do business. We are inefficient and have an overarching bureaucracy that demands more money be spent than necessary. Moreover, there is money wasted in several programs that need not the budget currently.
Debate Round No. 1
mrjpb104

Pro

I am sorry I wasn't very clear in my opening argument, but you got what I was advocating. I think it is immoral and wrong to speak of adding new government healthcare plans or other reforms before the debt is repaired. We are currently fixing to pass on the approx. $9 trillion debt to our kids, which is wrong and irresponsible.

You say that we have a budget set aside for those programs. Where is that money coming from? We are in debt, so how can we fund programs without extending the debt further?

Your second argument is that we can work on both at the same time. This is a good idea, but they would essentially cancel each other out. If you plan on having the government feed billions into reinforcing the border and deporting illegal aliens while we also try to eliminate the debt, it will go nowhere. Chances are we will spend more than we can replenish.

I agree with your assessment that we are fiscally irresponsible. But do you honestly think this will change without a serious overhaul in Washington?
xpakamanx

Con

OK in refutation of the previous round I would like to point out that my opponent is advocating that our government completely stop funding social services. If you buy into his logic then we can't afford to pay for any social service. He advocates that we can not fund these programs and fix the national debt, to quote "they would essentially cancel each other out.". So he advocates that there is no way we can continue social service programs and fix the national debt, that is more irresponsible than not fixing the national debt.

Moreover, to overhaul a program isn't nearly as costly as one thinks. Simple things such as efficiency and decreasing the bureaucracy that is around these programs is a very cost effective way of reforming programs. Moreover, our government wastes billions of dollars on ineffective programs and pork-barrel spending. Simply eliminating these costs is a great way to reduce the amount of money spent and can thus then be diverted to reforming social services.

Simply put there isn't one reason that is backed up with logic/hard fact that our government can not solve these two problems at once. It has been done before (Clinton) and can be done again and not at the expense of social service programs.
Debate Round No. 2
mrjpb104

Pro

I am most definitely not advocating complete cutting of funding, I just am not in support of adding more. Washington and current Presidential candidates speak of adding more, which I believe is not a good move.

Do you honestly think politicians can just stop adding pork to bills? It isn't that easy. Its in their nature and the government will always be beating around the bush. The government will always be a bureaucracy. I'd like to see you or anyone else go tell any politician to stop adding so much pork and see how they react. It's impossible.

Also, Clinton did it with very high taxes. If taxes are to be increased to solve the problem, the economy will be crushed. It is already showing signs of recession (the NASDAQ has been down modestly 8 of the past 9 days) along with the Dow nearly 2000 points below recent highs. If taxes increase, businesses will be hurt, along with jobs. This will cost the government even more money. Clinton's plan may have worked in the '90's, but it wouldn't work now.
xpakamanx

Con

xpakamanx forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by mmadderom 9 years ago
mmadderom
"Also, Clinton did it with very high taxes. "

Clinton also did it by robbing the SS fund and letting an unstable and unrealistic tech market run unchecked artificially booming the economy. There was no "surplus" and certainly didn't pay down the debt.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by mrmatt505 9 years ago
mrmatt505
mrjpb104xpakamanxTied
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Vote Placed by LandonWalsh 9 years ago
LandonWalsh
mrjpb104xpakamanxTied
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Vote Placed by GBretz 9 years ago
GBretz
mrjpb104xpakamanxTied
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Vote Placed by mrjpb104 9 years ago
mrjpb104
mrjpb104xpakamanxTied
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Vote Placed by ZedLoch 9 years ago
ZedLoch
mrjpb104xpakamanxTied
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