The Instigator
Ron-Paul
Pro (for)
Winning
6 Points
The Contender
ConservativePolitico
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The Roman Empire Was Superior to the Roman Republic

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Ron-Paul
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/23/2012 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 7,309 times Debate No: 23786
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (12)
Votes (2)

 

Ron-Paul

Pro

Here is our Roman Empire debate CP. Enjoy.

Full Resolution:

The Roman Empire Was Superior to the Roman Republic.

Definitions:

The Roman Empire: "The post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean. Years: 27 B.C.-476 A.D.."[1]

The Roman Republic: "The period of the ancient Roman civilization where the government operated as a republic. Years: 509 B.C.-27 B.C.."[2]

Superior: "Of higher grade or quality."[3]

Rules:

1. The first round is for acceptance.
2. A forfeit or concession is an automatic loss and all seven points for voting should be given to the other person.
3. No semantics.

Debate Structure:

Round 1: Acceptance.
Round 2: Arguments and rebuttals (latter for con)
Rounds 3-4: Defense of own arguments and attack of opponent's arguments (no new arguments).
Round 5: Conclusion (just summarize your arguments and the flaws in your opponent's arguments, no new arguments, max 2500 characters).

By accepting this debate, my opponent agrees to the full resolution, definitions, rules, and debate structure. Please make this debate clean and mannerly. May the best debater win.

Sources:

[1]:http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2]:http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3]:http://dictionary.reference.com...
ConservativePolitico

Con

I accept.
Debate Round No. 1
Ron-Paul

Pro

I. Defending the Empire

i. The Pax Romana

"Pax Romana (Latin for "Roman peace") was the long period of relative peace and minimal expansion by military force experienced by the Roman Empire in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD.""Its span was about 207 years (27 BC to 180 AD)."[1] It was never equaled by the Republic in length at any time. All major civil wars had ended. There was not a major civil war (the civil war after Nero could be contested, but it did relatively little damage and was certainly not to the extent of any of the civil wars previous) until the early 300s AD.

Another feature of the Pax Romana was the war was taken out of Italy and its immediate conquests (Greece and Macedonia). There would never again be an attack on Italy and its immediate conquests (the last one being Julius Caesar's march on Rome) until late in the 4th Century.

ii. Emperors

Whenever criticizing the Roman Empire, people always bring up names like Caligula, Nero, Commodus, and others. They forget two things. One, they forget the good emperors like Augustus, early Tiberius, Claudius, Vespasian, Trajan, Hadrian, Marcus Aurelius, Constantine, and others. They also forget that bad people of the Republic like Tiberius Gracchius, Gaius Gracchius, Sulla, Pompey, Crassus, Caesar, and others (this will be covered in more detail later).

Emperors could be very good, and their policies could be enacted quicker, more successfully, and with more effect than at any time in the Republic.

II. Attacking the Republic

i. Civil Wars

Civil Wars were rampant in the last two centuries of the Republic. The first one started with Tiberius Gracchius and his land reform policies. A civil war broke out between the aristocracy and only ended with Tiberius's assassination. Then his brother, Gaius, came to power. The exact same thing happened.

Then came Marcus and Sulla. Their policies differed significantly. Marcus was consul for 6 out of 10 years. After he was deposed by Sulla, he wanted his power back. And everyone knows that this equals civil war. So came civil war. Marcus was defeated and Sulla became almost like a dictator for 10 years (I'll cover him later).

Then came the first triumverate. Crassus, Pompey, and Caesar. There was an internal struggle with the Senate and Aristocracy pitted against the populus. The triumverate originally took the populus's side, but the Senate managed to wedge Pompey and Caesar (Crassus by this time was out of the picture) apart, with Pompey now on the Senate's side. They wanted Caesar's generalship taken away and for him to be prosecuted for crimes against the state. He refused, and even marched on Rome. Pompey, the Senate, and their Army feld to Greece and Caesar took Rome. Caesar defeated Pompey in Greece and became dictator. In his 5th year, he was assassinated.

Then came the second triumverate. Lepidus, Antony, and Augustus (at the time Octavian). Again, the latter two drew apart, and civil war resulted. It resulted with Antony's suicide and Augustus's uncontested power over the Roman Empire.

The Roman Republic was very unstable and frequently had civil wars. While the Empire had civil wars, they were less frequent and were a lot less bloody than the Republic's. The Empire was more stable.

ii. Consuls

Consuls could be very bloody. There was Tiberius Gracchius who killed several people to better his plan before being assassinated himself. There was Gaius who did the same thing. There was Sulla who killed thousands in order to eradicate everyone who disagreed with him. There was Caesar who was so scrupuluous that he is considered on of the most feared people of antiquity.

The Republic encouraged people like this to power and to kill all who stood in their way. This rarely happened in the Empire.

Conclusion

The Republic was more unstable than the Empire. I am curious to see my opponent's arguments. I will have more thoughtout arguments next round. I am interested to see how my opponent argues.

Sources:

[1]:http://en.wikipedia.org...
ConservativePolitico

Con

Contentions

I.
Ci. The Pax Romana

I cannot disagree that the Pax Romana was a time of peace and prosperity for the Roman empire. However, a stretch of good times cannot necessarily outweigh the bad. Take for example Nazi Germany. In the 1930s Germany recovered greatly under the Nazis but then declined again in the 1940s. Does this period of good times make Nazi Germany superior to pre-Nazi Germany?

After the Pax Romana Rome faced the worst times in its history before eventually collapsing (will address in more detail). I would like to just say that one good period of time does not automatically make one thing superior to another. You must examine the empire as a whole, which I will make sure we do.

Cii. Emperors

You have helped solidify my point about the Pax Romana with your argument about the Emperors. You say that a few bad names cannot outweigh the good ones. The same premise applies to the Pax Romana. A few good times cannot (in this case) outweigh the bad in the end.

I would like to point out that my opponent gave no source when stating that an emperor was more efficient at making decisions than the Republic.

Also, the Roman empire transferred Rome from a Republic ruled by councils formed by the people to an autocratic regime. Whether you say the emperors did a better job than the people or not cannot refute the fact that the political freedom of the Romans declined in the Empire. The Roman Republic held forums, councils and the Senate in order to rule via the populace. [1] The emperors caused political freedom in Rome to drop with the decision making power removed from these councils and placed in one man.

II.
Ci. Civil Wars

You say that the Roman Empire was more stable than the Roman Republic but this simply is not true. Yes, the Roman Republic was caught up in many civil wars but so was the Roman Empire. The Roman Empire had nine of its own civil wars. [2] While the Empire was still subject to civil wars like the Republic it was also subject to a series of damaging external wars that would lead the fall of Rome. During the reign of the Roman Empire there were a series of six major wars ending with the Gothic Invasions of Rome. [3] Rome simply spread out too far to control its own territory leading to occupations and instability in the far reaches of the Empire. There was restlessness in Jewish Palestine, Britain was conquered upsetting the Gothics and the Germans.

The claim that the Roman Empire was somehow more stable than the Republic is simply untrue. They had a series of civil wars and damaging destabilizing external wars.

Cii. Consuls

Politics in the Roman Empire was just as bloody. There were twenty Roman emperors murdered. Twenty. [4] So politics in Rome under the Empire were just as bloody as they were before. The type of politics changed from one era to the next but not the nature of them.

Assertions

A1. Fall of Rome

The Roman Empire led to the fall of Rome. The empire spread out too much and was subsequently invaded by Europeans from the north. Due to the unstable and spread out nature of the empire they could not respond to the threat eventually leading to the sack of Rome and the fall of the Roman empire. [5] The Roman Republic was smaller and more condensed and also more in control of its outer territories and was never threatened externally as much as the Empire. Also, the fall of Rome came under the Empire not under the Republic. After the Pax Romana and from the "third century on" [5] Rome saw its territories begin to deteriorate and fail to deal with barbarian and foreign incursions.

A2. Senate

The Roman Republic was the first real Republic that functioned for the people. The United States took a lot of how it would eventually run its senate and government from the original Roman Republic. [6] Our representative system is borrowed heavily from the original Roman Republican system. That influence led to the United States government system and many other republican systems around the world today.

A3. The Dark Ages

Due to the Roman Empire's failure to maintain control and economic stability towards its later years this failure led to the Dark Ages. You claim the Pax Romana as a reason for Imperial superiority but the Romana cannot cancel out the 500 years [7] of history after the fall of Rome which led to the European feudal system, the Middle Ages, general poverty, a regression in technology and learning and an overall decline in the quality of life for those in Europe. The Roman Empire led directly to the Dark Ages and a massive decrease in quality of life for those under its former control. This is a huge blight to the Empire considering that the Roman Republic caused no such tragedy.

Conclusion

We have proven Pro's arguments to be false or over exaggerated in many areas while showing that the Roman Empire was unstable and bloody just like the Republic. Also, the rule of the Roman Empire would lead to the collapse of Rome, the fall of the Empire and the Dark Ages while the more controlled influence of the Republic lives on. The Roman Empire caused many hundreds of years of stagnant growth in Europe and regression.

For these reasons the Roman Republic was superior to the Roman Empire.


[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[5] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[6] http://voices.yahoo.com...
[7] http://www.gotquestions.org...
Debate Round No. 2
Ron-Paul

Pro

Sorry CP. I am going to have to respectfully forfeit. I am swamped with Calculus homework, Chinese homework, and the like. I will have arguments for the next round, I am just out of time (i.e. I only have 5 minutes left). I would like to ask voters to give the conduct point to my opponent, but please do not base the convincing arguments points on this. Again, I very much apologize to CP and I hope that you will understand.
ConservativePolitico

Con

ConservativePolitico forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Ron-Paul

Pro

My opponent has temporarily left DDO (hopefully), so he will not be responding to this debate. Vote pro.
ConservativePolitico

Con

Yes I apologize for my absence.

Since I left the site and this debate unattended I will concede.

vote pro
Debate Round No. 4
Ron-Paul

Pro

Finishing this.
ConservativePolitico

Con

Again, I apologize.

Debate Round No. 5
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Ron-Paul 4 years ago
Ron-Paul
Yeah. That sounds fun.
Posted by ConservativePolitico 4 years ago
ConservativePolitico
Thanks for understanding. It was just going to be a great debate. Sad we didn't get to finish. Maybe a rematch sometime.
Posted by Ron-Paul 4 years ago
Ron-Paul
Hey CP, its alright. I've had problems before too and have had to forfeit. It's nothing new. Nothing to worry over.
Posted by Ron-Paul 4 years ago
Ron-Paul
Man. I wanted to debate this. Oh well. I'll make an open challenge soon.
Posted by 16kadams 4 years ago
16kadams
CP left DDO so ron you won
Posted by ConservativePolitico 4 years ago
ConservativePolitico
No problem!
Posted by Ron-Paul 4 years ago
Ron-Paul
Thank you. That helps.
Posted by ConservativePolitico 4 years ago
ConservativePolitico
Ron-Paul: I understand completely. I too am pretty busy this weekend. I will let this run down and then we'll continue in the next round giving you time to clear up your busy work load.

I will make sure everyone understands that we just skipped a round.
Posted by Ron-Paul 4 years ago
Ron-Paul
Good point.
Posted by Zaradi 4 years ago
Zaradi
Now this should be interesting. It comes down to what we're going to judge success by. Winnable by either side.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by 16kadams 4 years ago
16kadams
Ron-PaulConservativePoliticoTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by Maikuru 4 years ago
Maikuru
Ron-PaulConservativePoliticoTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Con conceded.