The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

Capitalism is bad!

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/30/2018 Category: Economics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 896 times Debate No: 114752
Debate Rounds (3)
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yes, interested? I would prefer if you would have your argument fully written or at least fully planned before accepting the debate. I did leave the debate open so you can technically do whatever you wish but that's what I would prefer.

1.) My opponent must argue capitalism is good or neutral in terms of over-all effects. I will argue that it is bad.


The Buddhist Darma is a concept that involves the role of desire in our everyday lives and continual perceptions. I accept this as the best alternative to capitalism and I will explain why. This philosophy notes that all desires wish to maintain themselves and spread like fire. Often times people say that money is the root of evil but this is false. Desire is the root of all evil. Capitalism is the primary example of this today.

The problem with capitalism is its embrase of never-ending desire. There can NEVER be enough money in the system, and no individual person can really even HAVE enough of anything. It promotes such a bottomless monstrosity of desire for everything and in promoting money as the solution to these things it creates a completely devestating situation in which the people's minds are consumed not with personal development or care, or compassion, but it runs people through a psychological rat race to increase capital.

This desire inevitably promotes and brainwashes people to become consumers. Naturally this results in a massive increase in CONSUMPTION everywhere. This consumption is destroying our fragile ecosystem and resulting in global warming, war, gentrification, nationalism, pollution, alienation of ordinary individuals from society, and massive wealth inequality. I also argue it causes mental health issues which result in psychosis, massacres, and a general disconnect from reality in all sorts of people.

Furthermore, "The global population has grown from 1 billion in 1800 to 7.616 billion in 2018. It is expected to keep growing, and estimates have put the total population at 8.6 billion by mid-2030, 9.8 billion by mid-2050 and 11.2 billion by 2100." ( so this problem is anything but going away.

To large degree consumption is inevitable and nobody want to live without electricity or heat, however the problem is not so much that these inventions exist and assist humanity, as much as it is the obscene amount that these are being used, not to mention the meaningless items we purchase and use. I think the song "Zombie" by "The Cranberries" shows the way that people become mindless consumers in the system of unrestrained exploitation that we DO live within.

People are oblivious to the fact that those who consume Become consumed and the #1 problem we face today is nothing I have listed before, it is instead this mindlessness which becomes prevelant. People no longer seek to make huge positive impact, instead they largely work for their portion and call it good. This system and its effects are what I would call bad, or against the interestes of people on the whole. I again argue that one good alternative is to renounce the blind-light that capitalism offers and focus on what is within.


Thank you for bringing this question up for debate, in a turbulent time economically in many places this is an interesting question.

I will be arguing that Capitalism is not a bad thing for societies and in fact can be incredibly positive.

I will just address the overall effects of capitalism before I delve into the more philosophical stuff.

In 1970, the global poverty rate was 26.8% in 2018 it is 8%. In this time period, Capitalism has become the most common economic structure/philosophy throughout the international community.

In 2018, Capitalism is the most common form of economic philosophy used by countries and the global poverty rate is at an all-time low and is projected to drop even lower in the coming years.

Capitalism produces more wealth, the capitalist countries today are the richest in our world"s history.

If it wasn't for general capitalist spirit innovation would not occur or would at a much slower rate.

Economic freedom implies political freedom.

There is a reason why only five communist countries are left (the rest failed or broke free of communism).

Social changes for most of history happen earlier in capitalist societies because not only does the innovation mean technological or whatever but also social.

Now, in response to your comments about desire and Capitalism. Desire isn't something that is innately evil and honestly, you cannot remove the desire from people and expect anything to get better. There is a concept in psychology known as "learned helplessness", the basic premise is that at times, an individual can lose all desire to live in the presence of aversive stimuli and will simply give up. Desire is something that is found in every single species on Earth, it just is expressed in a variety of ways. I will concede that desire can be a negative thing, if one desires to do negative actions then this is obviously negative. However, what you neglect to consider is that it is very bad to squash desire in humans and animals alike.

In response to the things that you say Capitalism has caused, they can also be fixed by Capitalism. Global warming/pollution if we stand up and say we won"t buy from companies that are dumping crap in our oceans or our air then we won"t buy their products, those companies will go out of business. If we just say, "government do it for us" that is just lazy. Gentrification: if the wealthy say we won"t buy those apartments because how they were acquired is wrong and they don"t buy them then they will force the people removing poor people from the apartments to give the apartments back at a low cost. Nationalism: Nationalism and hyper-nationalism are two different things. There is nothing wrong with nationalism because nationalism is pride in one"s country, hyper-nationalism, however, is terrible. Hyper-nationalism is saying that anyone not from my country is worse, this is bigotry and is disgusting in my opinion. "alienation of ordinary individuals from society": that"s too vague for me to respond to. War: this honestly sorts of ridiculous to say Capitalism is responsible for war since war has been around for literally all of human history. Massive wealth inequality: I addressed this in my statistics at the beginning.

In response to your comment about how Capitalism makes everyone consumers. Everyone no matter who they are wishes to be gratified, whether it be by food, phones, sports, whatever. The drive to be a consumer is linked to a desire and this is another aspect that is innate in humans. Hunter and gatherer societies, what did they do? They spent their time looking for resources that would gratify them (food and water). As for the massive consumption being everywhere, this is linked to capitalism but not in the direct way that you're implying. Technological innovations are the reason why there is mass consumption on a greater scale than ever before, and why is that? Capitalism.
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Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Thoht 3 years ago
Philosophical systems are not economic systems. You can exist in a capitalist society and adopt Buddhism if you want. Your argument is not against an economic system but against greed in general. These two things aren't literally the same thing.
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