The Instigator
Danielle
Pro (for)
Winning
22 Points
The Contender
Hurstman
Con (against)
Losing
6 Points

The United States should withdraw from the United Nations.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Danielle
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/23/2010 Category: Politics
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 7,436 times Debate No: 12123
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (15)
Votes (5)

 

Danielle

Pro

== Introduction ==

I'd like to thank my opponent, Hurstman, in advance for accepting this challenge. I think the terms of the resolution are pretty clear, so without further adieu, let's get down to the debate!

== Contentions ==

1. Credibility and Corruption

Despite its reputation, one has to wonder how legitimate the credibility of the UN really is. In 2001 the United States was voted out of the UN Human Rights Commission. Nations such as Sudan and Libya - known rights violating nations - were voted in. Syria was promoted to the security council despite the country being known to aid terrorism (talk about irony). Russia has been a part of the commission despite being a totalitarian state where human rights were non-existent for most of the time after its inception [1]. As we can see, many unjust nations are valued as part of the UN despite its commitment to human rights.

The United States is hypocritical in standing in opposition to many of these country's regimes and yet supporting them through funding as a sponsor of the UN. There are also fairness issues such as the UN's practice of nepotism (rewarding allies). Another concern is top-ranking official of the U.N., Secretary General Kofi Annan, having ties to the irresponsibly corrupt oil-for-food program in Iraq. U.N. operations in places like North Korea, Burma, Syria, Iran, Cuba, and Zimbabwe have been transferring cash and resources to these unaccountable regimes and state sponsors of terror in the name of humanitarian assistance and "capacity building" [5]. As you can see, corruption and hypocrisy are not foreign to this morally questionable organization.

2. Usefulness

The Johns Hopkins newsletter notes, "Simply put, the U.N. is the world's least effective international body. Despite its grand commitment to end threats to human security, such as interstate war, genocide, famine, internal war, disease and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the U.N. has been surprisingly unsuccessful at achieving these ends" [2]. The UN's ineffectiveness has many underlying causes such as problems with the security council's balance of power, and their adhering to (accepting) every country's 'right' to govern itself how it chooses. However, it's no secret that some forms of government are more acceptable than others. The U.S. is stonewalled from ever trying to actually encourage Human Rights abroad. For instance, when the U.S. tried to pass resolutions against the Sudanese government's sponsorship of genocide in Darfur, China and the Russian Federation stopped us. What is the purpose of this organization if it doesn't accomplish many of its goals? Further, many of the things it is credited for (i.e. preventing a third world war) could easily be attributed to non-U.N. related factors. The U.S. doesn't need this organization to make change throughout the world; in fact, many of our efforts have been hindered as a result of this organization.

3. Expenses

American tax dollars should be used solely to advance American interests. It is morally wrong to force citizens to support any type of foreign investment without their direct consent. The U.N. has caused America to donate hundreds of millions of dollars to charities while our own citizens go impoverished and uninsured. For whatever reason, the U.S. is the U.N.'s biggest donor coughing up as much money as 900+ million dollars a year on peace keeping efforts alone. In fact, U.S. contribution alone constitutes more than 1/4 of the entire budget! Since 1945, congressional records indicate that the United States has given $30 billion to the corrupt organization as it pursues a futile enterprise and undermines the sovereignty of the United States [3]. United Nations auditors note that 43 percent of U.N. procurement investigated is tainted by fraud. Out of $1.4 billion in U.N. contracts internally investigated, $610 million was tainted by significant fraud and corruption schemes [5].

4. American Laws and Sentiments

Many U.N. programs have violated the Constitution, such as the implementation of the International Court of Justice and the Law of the Sea Treaty, both of which the United States does not currently endorse [4]. Additionally, since its inception the United States has been wary of involving itself unnecessarily in foreign affairs. In his infamous farewell address, George Washington warned that the U.S. should "steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world." Moreover, the U.N. and the U.S. have often been at odds regarding issues such as the Iraq war, supporting Israel's military endeavors, etc. Why force the U.S. to fund and participate in an organization frequently against its own interests? Moreover, the U.N. often pursues anti-American policies such as the U.N.'s International Criminal Court, which would restrict Americans' right to a trial by a jury of their peers. The ICC contains no provisions to confront one's accusers, and the writ of habeus corpus isn't guaranteed. This is contrary to America's ideals and granted constitutional rights.

== Conclusion ==

The United States' involvement in the United Nations is an unconstitutional and unlawful engagement which disfranchises citizens at their own expense. Our participation is costly with negative aspects that far outweigh the benefits. The benefits of being involved with the UN could be achieved without our involvement. The credibility and impact of the organization is limited with many concerns about its legitimacy and corruption.

== Sources ==

[1] http://www.capitalismmagazine.com...
[2] http://media.www.jhunewsletter.com...
[3] http://www.thebatt.com...
[4] http://www.house.gov...
[5] http://coburn.senate.gov...
Hurstman

Con

Thank you, L, for starting this debate. I hope to provide lots of clash and for it to be fun, interesting, and overall friendly. Just to clarify before I begin, I will go down my opponents case and then set up mine. For a heads-up, the thesis I base my case around is that the concept of a United Nations, or a worldwide central government, is not only a politically good one, but a morally good concept as well. My opponent never argues the concept of a worldwide government, so we must conclude in this debate that it is a good concept. So as Con, if I can prove that it is reasonable to believe that by the United States withdrawing from the United Nations is either morally wrong, politically wrong, or could eliminate any possibility of salvaging a worldwide government, then I will have won this debate. Likewise, to set this debate in the fairest grounds, my opponents burden is to prove it unreasonable. So whoever wins two of the three factors I presented will have fulfilled their burden and won this debate. I apologize for the lengthy introduction, but I find it necessary to avoid confusion. Now, on to the debate.

==========Opponent's contentions===========

1. Credibility and Corruption

From this we can see that the current United Nations is corrupt. It would be useless for me to argue with the overwhelming fact that the United Nations isn't what the ideal concept of a worldwide government would be. But what I will say, is that by the United States withdrawing, it will allow this organization to further corrupt itself. My opponent states "Despite its reputation, one has to wonder how legitimate the credibility of the UN really is". This sentence implies that on the outside the United Nations is seen as credible, but on the inside it is not. I agree to this. But this only backs up the idea that many people only see the outside, thus are in favor for it, support it, even endorse it. So by the United States withdrawing, their are still people who are for the corrupt government. The United States may very well be the sole factor preventing this organization from further corruption, or an extreme abuse of there power. This point is only backed up when my opponent states "In 2001 the United States was voted out of the UN Human Rights Commission. Nations such as Sudan and Libya - known rights violating nations - were voted in. Syria was promoted to the security council despite the country being known to aid terrorism (talk about irony). Russia has been a part of the commission despite being a totalitarian state where human rights were non-existent for most of the time after its inception. As we can see, many unjust nations are valued as part of the UN despite its commitment to human rights."
My opponent and I agree that the United Nations have some very "unjust" and just plain bad countries holding very powerful positions. My opponent furthers "The United States is hypocritical in standing in opposition to many of these country's regimes and yet supporting them through funding as a sponsor of the UN". I will later address the expenses, but I would like to point out that it would be hypocritical of America to withdraw knowing that the United Nations is corrupt. Just because America leaves doesn't mean the U.N is abolished. That just further defends that the U.N could misuse their power with America, the tip of the spear against injustices and terrorism, out of the picture. The rest of this contention and be addressed with my previous argument.

2. Usefulness

Once again, this goes in line with corruption. I agree that the current U.N is close to useless, but the concept is not. It is close to useless due to corruption. My only points...If left unchecked, the U.N could go from close to useless to outright abusive and contradictory to U.S objectives. Just like when Hitler rose to power from the ashes of Germany, so could another malicious leader rise from the corruption that is the U.N. Also, we can't blame the corruption on the ideal, only on the situation. Did Einstein invent the light bulb on the first try? No. But the light bulb remained an ingenious idea and proved to benefit our lives IMMENSLY.

3. Expenses

My opponent writes "American tax dollars should be used solely to advance American interests". This is a debate for another time and place, but as of right now America is the leading force against terrorism and injustices around the world. These efforts cost money, and to suddenly stop these efforts would be hypocritical considering America's objectives. (I bring up hypocrisy a lot since my opponent finds it a weighing factor in the round). On the expenses....1) Since America is such a big benefactor to the U.N, we have leverage to use to better shape the U.N to what we want. To rid it of corruption. 2) I will concede that America could cut back on the amount of funding. That however does not win my opponent the debate.

4. American Laws and Sentiments

This just furthers corruption and contradiction to American objectives. But if we withdraw from the U.N, the U.N continues to exist and enforce the laws. They also then have the opportunity to abuse their power even more and extremely contradict American laws and sentiments.

=========Con Points==========

1. Morally wrong

Leaving the U.N is morally wrong on the grounds that since the U.N is as corrupt as me and my opponent agree on, then it could easy become a oppressive regime on a worldwide scale. This could cause mass genocide and/or injustices. My opponent's 4th and last point spoke of the contradictions to American law, but this only furthers that the U.N's morals do not align with our morals, increasing the chance of violating our morality. For these reasons, it is morally wrong to withdraw from the U.N.

2. Politically wrong

In terms of politics, withdrawing from the U.N could severely hurt us by either 1) Cutting our ties with other nations who are members of the U.N. 2) Angering the U.N to take action against us, seeing as they just lost "1/4 of the entire budget!". 3) If we stay in the U.N, purge it and it becomes the ideal worldwide government, that would greatly prosper America and take a huge leap to achieve our foreign objectives. Not doing this wouldn't hurt us, it would just throw away a golden opportunity. 4) If the U.N becomes a worldwide regime without us there to stop them, they could start ANOTHER war for America that could either A) America wins and suffers immensely due to monetary losses, loss of lives, etc. or B) We lose, America falls, the world is screwed. So for these reasons, withdrawing for the U.N would be politically wrong.

3. Hope for an ideal worldwide government in the future

If you combine my two first points, you will see that if the U.S withdraws, horrible things can happen. On the off chance we recover from said horrible things, who will honestly want another worldwide government? If we fix it now, there is still hope for that great ideal that my opponent and I agree upon. Also, if said horrible things don't happen, then a corrupt worldwide government is still in place, eliminating the chance of another "better" one. Can't have two worldwide governments. ;)

=======Conclusion=======

For these reasons, a Con vote is necessary. I hope I met the expectations of my esteemed opponent, and all of the people reading and voting on this debate. Sorry for the lengthy argument, but I'd like to note that I barely made the character limit. Nice call on 8,000 characters. I look forward to L's response, I'm sure it will be fantastic. Back to you Pro. =)
Debate Round No. 1
Danielle

Pro

Thanks, Con!

== Defense of Contentions ==

1. Con admits that the UN is a corrupt organization with little credibility. He says that US withdrawal would further corrupt the group. If we're not funding it, then it doesn't matter to us where other countries choose to spend their time and money. When the US doesn't agree with the UN, we simply go against them just like George Bush did in 2003 in going to war with Iraq. As you can see, just because you're a part of the UN doesn't mean the UN has any impact on your decisions whatsoever. Likewise, you don't have to be a part of the UN to be a functioning country (i.e. Kosovo and Taiwan).

If the UN became so corrupt without our participation, then inevitably other countries would follow suit and also leave. In a world where technology allows us to have direct connection with people all over the globe, and in one that values peace and prosperity, nations would find a way to resolve conflicts without the need for an expensive, corrupt and unuseful bureaucratic behemoth of an organization. Con says that it would be hypocritical for us to withdraw from the UN on the basis of its corruption, but I don't see how or why that's true.

2. Con admits that the UN is useless at accomplishing their goals. This is not only due to corruption, but just bad ideas in general. Again, consider the example of the US going to war with Iraq despite the UN being against it. Clearly the UN is unable to really enforce anything or punish anyone. Corruption is also not to blame for the other examples I gave in the last round (such as the US not being able to accomplish any of their objectives). Con says that having a bad leader of the UN could hurt the US, and compared said leader to Hitler of Germany. This is a poor analogy because the world is a much different place from then (i.e. we have nuclear weapons, thus bringing the concept/possibility of war into a whole new ball game), and further, the same thing Con suggests could happen regardless of the US's involvement or not (since we proved that nobody including the US has any real power -- people are going to do what they want regardless of their involvement). By the way, Con, Einstein didn't invent the light bulb...

3. Con says that whether or not American tax dollars should be used to advance American interests is subjective. I vehemently believe that this is an objective fact. While taxes in general can be likened to stealing, the social contract implies that taxes are permissible so long as they benefit the State we live in and pay into. Yes, the US is anti-terrorism and (unfortunately) tries to police the world for what it deems injustices. However Con's suggestion that leaving the UN would be "hypocritical" is actually backwards. It's BECAUSE the UN hinders our interests to police the world that leaving would be beneficial to our objectives.

As I've stated in the last round, the UN frequently blocks us in our attempt to do good i.e. when the U.S. tried to pass resolutions against the Sudanese government's sponsorship of genocide, and China and the Russian Federation stopped us. As you can see, we're paying into something that works against our interests. Con writes, "Since America is such a big benefactor to the U.N, we have leverage to use to better shape the U.N to what we want." My examples prove contrary. The US is still stopped from achieving its goals, and moreover we won't get the UN to agree with us just because we pay a lot of money into it (again, the Iraq war example). I'm glad my opponent concedes that we pay far too much money into the UN to boot.

4. I pointed out that many UN programs violate the US constitution and other laws, such as habeus corpus. I also pointed out America's traditional sentiments of avoiding involvement in foreign affairs. Con's rebuttal merely stated, "This just furthers corruption and contradiction to American objectives." How does this even make sense or apply to what I said? Con, please explain how the UN not upholding US laws and values has anything to do with corruption and presents contradictions to US objectives. On the contrary, being a part of something that is opposed to US objectives is what's going on here.

Con continues, "But if we withdraw from the U.N, the U.N continues to exist and enforce the laws." Again, this has absolutely nothing to do with my points about the UN standing in opposition to US laws and sentiments. If your point is that the UN would become even more corrupt without US involvement, I've already explained how and why that isn't our problem, and how it wouldn't have much impact on the US at all. The US is a powerful nation with or without the UN; the same can be said for other nations (like China, Russia, etc.). As I've explained, the UN isn't useful and many of the things we presume to thank the UN for (i.e. world peace, a stable US government, etc.) has nothing to do with the UN, and could still easily be achieved without the UN. Con insisting that the US would fall apart to some corrupt and unstable world government is fallacious and backed up by nothing but faulty imperatives.

== Rebuttal ==

1. Con suggests that the US withdrawing is morally wrong because the result may be mass genocide or other grave injustices. This is quite obviously nothing but a "what if" scenario; we have absolutely no reason to believe that the world would undergo some massively immoral feat by the US withdrawing. Quite obviously there are horrible things going on all over the world despite the US's involvement (i.e. Darfur) proving once again that our involvement has nothing to do with what goes on in the rest of the world. And again, since the US is blocked whenever we try to do good, it just further establishes that our involvement doesn't help anything. On the contrary, I would presume that if the US could actually invest its resources in positive things without being blocked, we would have a better chance at combating corruption and other injustices throughout the world. Ergo the world would actually be a better place without the US involved in the UN. Further, I think it's immoral to force Americans to pay into the UN when the UN is blatantly against the US in so many endeavors. It's stealing from the tax payers, and that is morally wrong.

2. A - Con says that it would be against our political interests to withdraw from the UN because it might cut our ties with other nations. We have no reason to accept this; the US is one of the most powerful nations in the world and still would be even without our involvement in the UN. We have deep ties and connections throughout the globe mainly due to our economic, political and military prowess. B - If the UN were to take "action against us" because they'd be mad that they lost 1/4 of their budget, this just proves that the UN is corrupt, immoral, and that the US should have absolutely no part in it. C - Con says that we should use the UN to create a worldwide government. More about that later. D - Finally, the US has the greatest military in the world; I highly doubt the entire UN would wage a war on the US given our possession of a LOT of nuclear weapons. Moreover, if that was their goal, they can/would do it even with our participation.

3. Con concludes, "If you combine my two first points, you will see that if the U.S withdraws, horrible things can happen." This is a perfect example of the slippery slope fallacy. Con continues to say that our withdrawal would lead to a corrupt world government; instead he wants to create an American-friendly worldwide government. I am out of characters, but will respond vehemently opposed to this idea (worldwide government) if/when Con expands on why that could possibly be a good thing, or even possible at all. The goal of US involvement is not and should not be to create a world government. It is in our best interest to withdraw from the United Nations. Thank you.
Hurstman

Con

Hurstman forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Danielle

Pro

== Conclusion ==

Unfortunately my opponent has forfeited R2, giving me nothing to respond to. As a final re-cap I'd like to point out that the United Nations has proven to be a corrupt and ineffective organization. The United States is responsible for 1/4 of the funding despite the U.N. frequently going against US interests. All of the positive effects of the UN could just as easily be achieved without US participation or the organization existing at all. It is immoral to force American citizens to pay taxes against U.S. interests, and make mandatory charity donations all over the globe (especially considering our current economic predicament). The UN would not crumble without the US, and it is a slippery slope (fallacious) assumption to say that something horribly immoral would arise without such organization such as Hitler. Remember that the League of Nations failed to stop Hitler (or any aggressive Axis Powers) and likewise the UN has failed to stop many atrocities all over the world since its inception, i.e. Vietnam, Iraq (both wars), Darfur, etc.

It would be in the United States' best interest to withdraw from the UN because it would save millions and millions of tax dollars which could go towards repaying our debt, or investing in our nation's economy (and society). The UN has proven that it is completely ineffective at accomplishing many of its goals. Moreover we would have more freedom to work toward our goals without being stopped or prevented by other powers of the UN. Aside from that, please extend all of my arguments and remember that my opponent may not bring up anything new in the last round considering I won't be able to respond. Thanks for the debate and good luck :)
Hurstman

Con

Hurstman forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
wonderwoman isn't serious about anything.
Posted by Vi_Veri 6 years ago
Vi_Veri
Do you seriously think Hurstman won this debate, Wonderwoman?
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
Anyway sure I would love to debate the war on drugs... It's not something I debate a lot about but something that I am definitely very passionate about.
Posted by Hurstman 6 years ago
Hurstman
Yeah, wonderwoman, not that don't appreciate the vote, but RFD please?
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
lol @ wonderwoman.
Posted by Hurstman 6 years ago
Hurstman
L, I'm sorry. I've been on, but only briefly. I've been super busy. Today is the first day of summer though for me, so I'll get to the war on drugs debate. I promise to not forfeit those.
Posted by Kinesis 6 years ago
Kinesis
'Do you know who did L?'

I think we all do.
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
Haha Hurstman you've been online consistently these past 3days... why give up? Anyway don't forget that it's your turn to go Pro next. Send me the challenge to the War on Drugs asap please. You can make the resolution "The United States should continue the War on Drugs" and be Pro; I'm Con.
Posted by Danielle 6 years ago
Danielle
Haha yes feverish I do. His name was Humphry Davy and he was from England. Edison improved his patent. I also know that while Alexander Graham Bell is attributed for inventing the telephone, the real inventor was from my neck of the woods - an Italian named Antonio Meucci. Bell improved his patent as well.
Posted by feverish 6 years ago
feverish
Do you know who did L?

To be fair all it says on the Wiki link is that he developed the first long-lasting ones suitable for practical use.

He was definitely a bad boy DJ though :) http://en.wikipedia.org...
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by Dingo7 6 years ago
Dingo7
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Vote Placed by Acts2-38 6 years ago
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Vote Placed by George_Bush_Rocks 6 years ago
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Vote Placed by Danielle 6 years ago
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Vote Placed by wonderwoman 6 years ago
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