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The Contender
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4 Points

Socialism is a better political system than Capitalism

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/13/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,025 times Debate No: 30127
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (17)
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By Capitalism I am using the system of government currently used by most governments.
My definition of Socialism is the ideals that companies and industry should be taken into public ownership and governed as such.
By Socialist alternatives I define as an alternative to current situations that fall into line with Socialist ideals.
By accepting the debate you agree to my terms.
Capitalism causes nothing but war,poverty,crime and famine. Surely this proves that Capitalism has failed,this means that we should try a different system of government. Socialism is an alternative that many fear. But fear comes from lack of understanding and no apparent proof of success. Sweden is a Socialist success story.


Capitalism: War, poverty, crime, and famine?

Each claim here is completely false. Free trade has been shown to decrease the chances of war. A 10% increase in the openness of trade leads to a 2.6% reduction in the chance of hostilities. Having free trade means there in an incentive not to invade another country: if you invade them you will lose money. Trade increases wealth of a nation, and having capitalistic free trade would be a positive incentive not to invade those they are trading with. With this benefit, if two nations do to war it seems they want to have a peace dividend with each other. Both desire peace, and having a monetary incentive to act on their peace actions helps the two reach agreements faster because they want to “rake in the cash”. If governments are in control of trade and business, no incentives for peace would occur. Further, the amount of free trade has been increasing in the world as the amount of countries increased (as the USSR fell apart). By this logic, war would increase because you have more opposing factions. And if we support my opponent’s logic, the more capitalistic laws would cause more war. But the opposite has occurred: the amount of wars has actually decreased as free trade increases [1].

My opponent’s next point is capitalism causes poverty. This is almost laughable. Socialism causes poverty, capitalism reduces it. That is proven every time. Capitalism is undoubtedly the cause of the industrial revolution. Government control and regulation has never worked in the past. In Europe, the countries that let businesses’ stay relatively unregulated and compete had the largest economies, booming economies, and the business that competed the most would have the best quality, cheapest, and most money. This is not to say capitalism is perfect; when totally unregulated it led to many activities we would see as immoral today. But it is the best and most effective way to run an economy. There are actually some signs companies were self-regulating out of these abuses because it hurt business. Government intervention has harmed the U.S. energy industry. They have been unable to compete cost-wise with the Japanese and Chinese and have been inefficient in keeping up with their technology. As China slowly deregulates, we regulate, harming us in the long run. Every time government intervenes, it gets worse. Capitalism is the number one poverty curing medicine in the first, second, and third world [2]. Socialism has a less flattering story. Poverty and famine are closely linked – so I will just lump the two together. Looking at the evidence, socialism increases both. North Korea has had massive famines and has the most interventionist economy on the planet [3]. Further as GDP increases life expectancy increases [4]. Socialism seems to increase poverty, and poverty generally leads to shorter life expectancy. Socialism and communism has been implemented in Cuba, the country was considered a place where you could live without working. Indeed, this hampered economic growth, increased sloth, and lead to few new advancements in the country. They only make $20 a month, on average, and Chile has an income four times that of Cuba, and reversed paths: it made free market reforms, not socialism. Their outcomes got better, and Cubas got worse [5]. Does capitalism really cause poverty?

Studies claiming capitalism causes crime have weak comparisons to make their points [6]. They actually compare the USA to Japan and Scandinavia, countries that have had lower crime than us even when they had free market policies. What is interesting, though, is that Japan has a relatively free market (not a socialist one as assumed by the authors) [7]. But the study has cherry picked what countries it picks and chooses. Singapore, ranking number two on the Heritage Free Market Index, has one of the lowest crime rates in the world [8]. Hong Kong, ranking number one on the Free Market Index, also has no crime (almost). According to Chinese news reports, their crime is only 0.2% -- which is almost non-existent crime [9]. If anything, capitalism seems to have no relationship with crime.

Scandinavia, a success?

Has Sweden really have a day in the park after initiating socialism? Sweden productivity is falling when compared to the USA, socialism has caused stagnated growth and higher taxes that are crushing the peoples wallets. Professor William L. Anderson explains:

“According to a recent study, however, the cat is out of the bag. Relative to household in the United States, Swedish family income is considerably less. In fact, the study concludes, average income in Sweden is less than average income for black Americans, which comprise the lowest-income socioeconomic group in this country. … The study used "fixed prices and purchasing power parity adjusted data," and found that "the median household income in Sweden at the end of the 1990s was the equivalent of $26,800, compared with a median of $39,400 for U.S. households." Furthermore, the study points out that Swedish productivity has fallen rapidly relative to per capital productivity in the USA.”[10]

Other studies done by the Cato Institute have obtained similar results to the peer-reviewed literature. America, having a medium welfare state compared to the Nordic large welfare state seems to outperform these Nordic counterparts on most levels of economic growth. The idea that the Nordic model has worked should be moved from plausible scenario to junk-science. It has been argued Nordic nations have seen massive economic growth as well as extremely high tax rates, but that comparison ignored how the Swedes have lower corporate taxes, flat taxes, stable currencies, promote private property, and rule of law which all create economic growth. Many of these policies are very capitalistic, overriding the socialistic welfare state. But the study then looked into other factors, not just short term booms. America has more wealth, lower unemployment, and better long term growth. The Socialistic model seems to foster short term growth but in the long run has negative tolls on the economy. The welfare state has actually canceled out their capitalistic policies hurting them in the long term. The Study indicated the socialistic policies were the reason the USA has outperformed Nordic nations [11].

So there you have it. My opponent cited the Swedish/Nordic model when in reality it is a perfect example of why not to enact socialist policies that have hampered long term growth.


In this debate, every line of evidence has been refuted by my opponent. I have shown a modern example of a semi-socialist country (Sweden) mentioned by my opponent as a reason NOT to enact his ideas, and have shown each point he has made is based not on fact. Therefore, I have shown socialism is highly faulty, and also showed how capitalism decreases poverty while increasing economic growth.






6. This study is an example of flawed anti-capitalist research:





Debate Round No. 1


Cmckee forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


Cmckee forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


Cmckee forfeited this round.


I was expecting a debate...
Debate Round No. 4


Cmckee forfeited this round.


Well, darn.
Debate Round No. 5
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by 1Historygenius 3 years ago
I think we know how this will go.
Posted by sadolite 3 years ago
Capitalism is a "political system"? Huh, I was taught it was the unfettered free movement of trade goods and services to create a free market and encourage competition in the business world. I always thought of "political systems" as different levels and types of tyranny to be imposed on it's citizenry to control movement and behavior.
Posted by Connoisseur 3 years ago
No I can't.
Posted by Cmckee 3 years ago
Changed the criteria you peeps should be able to accept
Posted by lannan13 3 years ago
I'm not sure what's stopping me from accepting this debate. When I click accept it's says I can't because I don't match your criteria.
Posted by daerice 3 years ago
Each system is flawed alone, it is by uniting them that a balance is created. Capitalism is powerful, a force to push production and innovation - however it is reckless and dangerous unless it is constrained by socialist interests. I would take the debate, but not as an 'either-or' - I would argue that one ideology must temper the other.
Posted by Sdoylewbfc 3 years ago
I accept your argument
Posted by lannan13 3 years ago
I still can't accept...
Posted by ZakYoungTheLibertarian 3 years ago
Posted by Cmckee 3 years ago
Changed criteria so might be able to debate now
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by 1Devilsadvocate 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: F.F. & as usual nice job con, shame it was F.F.'d