The Instigator
js93
Pro (for)
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The Contender
tregitsdown
Con (against)
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War is said to be a rational act. Since Europe has abandoned war as a political instrument, is the c

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/31/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,680 times Debate No: 24924
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (0)

 

js93

Pro

Resolution: Is Europe irrational for abandoning war as a political instrument?
tregitsdown

Con

Hello. I look forward to a interesting debate with my opponent.
I am slightly confused about how Euorope has to do with this, But I digress. War, in my opinion, is wholly irrational.
Debate Round No. 1
js93

Pro

Resolution: Is Europe irrational for abandoning war as a political instrument?

War is a rational act, but before I proceed further I would like to shed light on the definition of being rational. Although, many disciplines have different definitions for rationality all of them share the common characteristic of involving the use of reason and logic. However, in international relations being rational can be examined through the domain of rational choice model. The rational choice model in a nutshell is based on the notion of utility maximization in this case the utility being power. Prisoners dilemma is quintessential in explaining why war is a rational act since it simplifies the assumptions associated with decision making by a state. The decision to cooperate with fellow actors, or to pursue its own self interest through war. Based on the prisoners dilemma the act of waging war is simply a nation pursuing its self interest. However, any rational actor will undertake the action if his marginal net benefit is higher than the marginal cost. That is if the benefit from waging war such as access to new territory or access to precious resources is significantly higher than the cost of going to war for example the cost of weaponary,loss to life, reparation payments, but also the opportunity cost of going to war then waging the war is in a nations best interest.
The Prussian military theorist Carl Von CLausewitz defined war as a continuation of politics through other means. Therefore, war is primarily a political tool to achieve the desired self interests. War can not be irrational because one does not wage wage war based on emotions, enthused sense of nationalism. From example during the missile crisis both the USSR and USA did exercise the use of their nuclear arsenal because no one benefit exceeded the cost therefore the use of nuclear weapons would have led to mutual destruction for both. Therefore, war can not be irrational since both agents engage in the utilitarian frame work whether they are realists or liberals and that is why this resolution must stand.
tregitsdown

Con

Those are valid points, but war can also be irrational as well. Such as war over religion, in cases such as the crusades. Those were definitely irrational. And although in that case the USSR and USA did not use nuclear weapons, there are plenty of people who would do it even if resulted in mutual destruction, such as in the case of fanatics, which is why there are even such things as suicide bombers. Although this logic could work, there are plenty of madmen who would gladly kill themselves to kill their enemies. War is either one. Also, when you mention the prisoner's dilemma there are multiple solutions. You presented one, but in cases where both betray each other, it can be because, "they may betray me, so I must betray them!" It is not always so simple. War is a very complicated matter. There is no way to judge rationality of war without the details.
Debate Round No. 2
js93

Pro

js93 forfeited this round.
tregitsdown

Con

I see my opponent has not been able to post his debate. I will not take advantage of this, and only leave this one comment. Now, with this posting, let the voting begin!
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by js93 5 years ago
js93
THe resolution has been updated for all of those who are still unclear. I'm basically asking whether war is a rational act. Therefore, the pro arguments would be that of arguing whether war is rational.
Posted by Zaradi 5 years ago
Zaradi
What TheOrator said. I think this could be interesting, but have no idea what I would be debating for/against.
Posted by Stephen_Hawkins 5 years ago
Stephen_Hawkins
None of this makes sense.
Posted by TheOrator 5 years ago
TheOrator
Your resolution is cut off. I might accept it, but I don't even know what I'll be debating :P
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