Which side makes a better case?
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  • 2 years ago
    • 2 years ago

      @sigfried @max Thank you for the great debate any questions please ask

    • 2 years ago

      @ajgibson0418 Thanks for the lively judgement and excellent critique.

      Good point on the impacts of the historical analysis. A good thing to add, and easily done I think.

      The late-breaking arguments were simply things that came to me while listening to Pro. Some of his descriptions led me to think about breakaway states and that got me thinking about various lines of non-uniqueness to mention. Pro's line of argument caught me off guard so I was thinking on my feet.

      I did feel the resolution was really weighted towards Con. I find it a crazy notion that we could judge Trump against historical presidents without really knowing much about what Trumps presidency will bring. I rather expected that no one would take up the topic on Pro.

  • 2 years ago

    @max @sigfried
    Awesome debate with very interesting perspectives! It was an extremely close one in terms of vote too.. Upon the 24 hours mark upon the completion of the debate, the score was 11-10 in favor of the PRO hence we have a tie with the Judge vote.
    We'll bring a second judge to make the final decision!

    • 2 years ago
      • 2 years ago

        @lupita Thanks for the fine judgment and critique. Win lose or draw, its great to get thoughtful feedback from someone not involved in the argument.

        In my case, I had lots of individual historical comparisons from other presidents, but one category I didn't have anything for was the environment. Clearly an oversight on my part! I could probably have made a good Reagan argument on that account.

        I really liked how you framed Pros case as more than the US. Pro mentioned it, but didn't really frame it strongly that way, and it would have made me think of a response. It is very true. In many of the debates I've done, I get stuck in something of a US focus. It is a hard habit to break! A good debater needs to always be trying to get out of the usual boxes of thought.

    • 2 years ago

      The judges have spoken!
      @sigfried Congrats for advancing to the next round!
      @max Really liked your approach on this one.. hard luck. Registration for the next tournament is now open :-) https://www.qallout.com/tournament

      • 2 years ago

        Lol yall like how fast Im talking

      • 2 years ago

        I think @sigfried and I had a rather even debate here. But the topic was wildly slanted in his favor - I dont think there was a better direction to take it in.

        So I would ask voters to consider how well each side did considering what they had to work with ;P

        Although @sigfried did a frustratingly good job of keeping me from turning it wholly into a global warming debate, which was my strategy.

        • 2 years ago

          @max I commend your gumption in taking this one on! I am very much not a fan of Trump so I feel a little uneasy arguing to some extent on his behalf. Though I do stand by everything I said in the debate.

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried I stand by everything you said, too xD I do think history will look unfavorably upon Trump, though.

      • 2 years ago

        You can't determine this now. As of right now Trump isn't necessarily good or bad. In my opinion he's doing pretty alright.

        • 2 years ago

          @wjakegant I tend to think he's dreadful as a president, but so far, he hasn't really done anything disastrous for the country. For some individuals he's caused heartache (immigrants) but while I don't like those policies, I can't say they hurt the nation, which is more how I'd judge presidents historically.

      • 2 years ago

        What sort of leftist wants to put Trump's record (less than 1 year) as claim he is the worst ever President...when the 'stable' of worse choices is SO HUGE???

        How about Obama - I can list DOZENS of reasons why he is probably one of the worst. Maybe $10 Trillion dollars of added debt? Maybe his unwillingness to 'faithfully ensure that laws are enforced'. Maybe his desire to act like a king and issue illegal (per Supreme Court) Executive Orders. The list could go on...but only an IDIOT or RIP VAN WINKLE just waking up now could argue that Trump is worst. AND - there are plenty of other candidates to put before Trump (Clinton, James Buchanan, Woodrow Wilson, FDR...for starters. AND - I would hereby nominate someone that I had never considered before as in the pantheon of bad Presidents....Thomas Jefferson.....based on the writings of an eminent Presidential Historian.)

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard Kind of harsh, not much as commentary on the debate itself (did you watch it?), but thanks for responding to it anyhow and thanks for the vote, glad I can argue a position you can support.

          I'm a little surprised on the public opinion on this one. I'd expect that most people would find the resolution pretty much false on its face, and I felt I did a good job arguing for that. But one can never really predict how the public vote will go. Voting motivations and criteria vary so widely and so few bother to explain their vote.

          BTW: I think Obama was pretty good, not as great as I might have hoped, but decent. Clinton was actually very good in many respects. FDR is considered by many for the 1-3 spots and for good reason, but I understand how you would absolutely hate his policies. Jefferson, that's fascinating, but I might agree he's less good than many would make him out. Brilliant writer, but in terms of action, not all that stellar.

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried I listened to some of it...til I couldn't. I am not a 'professional debater' ...and I enjoy good discussions so long as the goal is TRUTH....not 'debate points.'

          To me...suppose there was a debate on whether PI should be rounded down to 3 (instead of the lengthy number 3.14159........... that is irrational number. BTW - in the 1800's - a Tennessee legislator proposed legislation to actually make PI = 3). I don't need to hear the debate to come to a conclusion that it is stupid. I would vote for the proper side, even if the person stammered and stuttered and did a crappy job on the debate. [mind you...I am not using that logic here to justify my vote!]

          AND - the 'pro' side had a bunch of very leftist political articles listed after the debate that are leftist hack jobs that are bereft of real facts. (AND - for every article alleging bad action by Trump, I could probably come up with 10 or 20 serious articles PROVING Obama violated one law or another, or took illegal action, etc. ) Why would I subject myself to that sort of stuff?

          I would NEVER try to be a "Resident Judge"...and vote based on the 'performance' of the debater. I will vote on the MERITS of the argument.....and if I know of facts on one side that support that position - I would vote for that position regardless of how the debaters comported themselves. [Yes...rules for judging might be different - but I consider it like being on a jury for deciding facts of a case....and I would not find for the person who 'argues best' ....but for the side that the facts support....(and ...if the debater on the side I support did a bad job....oh well, I will still support him/her if I feel the facts are on that side.)

          If you want to have a 'social discussion' (non-debate debate) on various 'bad' Presidents...I would be more than willing to expound at great length some of the reasons I listed some of the Presidents who clearly have a VERY bad record. [It is premature to judge Trump. Less than 1 year...and he has done NOTHING that merits any serious condemnation ....except for his damned/stupid Twittering... and there are lots of trivial obnoxious things....] BUT - clearly Obama is a trend-setter in being a horrible President. I am SURE that Jimmy Carter is happy Obama was a President...because he gets bumped out of the #1 slot.

          As to Jefferson ....the historian I was mentioning was somewhat laudatory about Jefferson's writing (however...Geo. Mason penned a document in 1774 that would actually serve as a great 'starting point for Jefferson's 'greatest accomplishment' - the Declaration of Independence. AND - various historical commentators reported that the DoI was the ONLY document that a draft was actually IMPROVED by a committee. (Given that one person defines a committee as a 'collective with 3 or more stomachs and no brain(s). SO maybe his writing wasn't THAT great.)
          And the historian said that Jefferson was a failure when it came to necessary action....too timid, etc. Never fought in the Revolutionary War...created conditions that led to the 1812 war, etc. Interesting commentary on Jefferson. Gave me a new perspective I never had before.

          Quick question for you.....who do you think was the SMARTEST President...and why?

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard I'm not sure who is the smartest. I tend to think of intelligence as having different dimensions. Some folks have great social IQ, others are super analytical, others have great memories.

          I find Obama to be very smart, but that's partly because he seems to think much as I do. But I doubt he was the smartest. Jefferson seems to have a brilliant mind, but he didn't strike me as wise so it didn't do him all that much good. FDR was far and away the most powerful and influential, an organizational genius, judging by how much he was able to accomplish.

          Clinton and Reagan both had a lot of social intelligence. They both really knew how to connect with people. Reagan probably has the edge there though. But I never found Reagan smart from a perspective of understanding policy in great detail. He's a delegating president, which is not at all a bad thing.

          But some of the others I've paid less attention to may well have been very clever in one way or another. I've only read a handful of biographies of presidents, most of what I know is from surveys of their presidencies.

          Adams was a very smart man by my account. Not a spectacular president but he was a very consistent and detailed intellectual thinker. He had a lot of forsignt about what would happen in the future with the new nation.

        • 2 years ago


          Obama - to me - ignorant. He has an 'Elmer Gentry' personality. And - attracts lots of followers. Like the named character in the movie (and book) who was a traveling evangelist who attracted large crowds, Obama has NO real works of any scholarship to his credit. As State Senator, he voted PRESENT more than anything else, sponsors no legislation, etc. The only role he did anything significant was as a 'community organizer' ...and his big claim to fame was, while working at a law firm, to pressure a bank to give 'sub prime loans' to people who really couldn't handle them. (And - years later, about 95% of the loans ...around 200) went into default. BTW - a defaulting loan hurts the bank and the people who had the loan....but what the heck...it is only rubes.) As a US Senator, again, no accomplishments. He (like Elmer Gentry) - was good at oration and suckered in 'believers' who were inspired by his soaring (and mostly vapid) rhetoric. IOW - he gave good sounding speeches that were lots of platitudes and nothings...except for big promises that the US government (and taxpayer) could not afford. He ran on claiming that Bush's record of raising the debt by over $4 Trillion in 8 years was almost unpatriotic...and then Obama proceeded to double down as raise the debt by almost $10 Trillion. So - Obama was either inept and a hypocrite - or a true Alinsky believer (and Cloward and Piven) who taught ways to 'bring down the system' by overloading it with debt and supplicants dependent upon government largess and willing to vote for the party of handouts. NOTHING in Obama's past shows him to be either extremely intelligent or have any integrity with respect to honor.

          Reagan - you miss the mark. He had innate common sense (that is so uncommon.) He was very smart....and unlike Obama, there is proof that Reagan was a 'great' thinker....read the book "Reagan, In His Own Hand; The Writings of Ronald Reagan That Reveal His Revolutionary Vision for America." Edited by Kiron K. Skinner. I tell anyone who tries to dismiss Reagan as unintelligent to do their research and read that book....which is a compilation of radio talks/speeches he gave between 1976 and 1980...and all the speeches written by Reagan. (no ghost writer, and no allegations of a ghost writer...unlike Obama's first tripe tome "Dreams from My Father.") Reagan's wisdom was in going with his 'gut' and not intellectuals who had progressive policies, and he was usually proven correct.

          Now...some people have judged Woodrow Wilson to be one of the brightest - because he had a PhD and was a university professor and academic. (His PhD was in Political Science...one of the first issued by John Hopkins Univ.....and here, PhD really seems to mean "Piled Higher and Deeper.) Others mention that Jimmy Carter was a 'nuclear scientist' because he went through Rickover's Navy Nuclear Training Program. (So did I...and I know I have more COMMON SENSE than Carter.) Bill Clinton - he was very smart, but very willing to 'go with the flow'...a populist who wanted to be liked and to be elected to higher offices. Pity he was a sleazy womanizer, groper, and probable rapist. FDR - hard to 'peg him'....he was good at appointing lots of 'progressives' who administered our nation into an extra long depression. He (like W.Wilson and Obama) - figured the Constitution was an impediment, and was always trying to figure out how to get around the restrictions in it. Again - his 'success' as a President wasn't due to anything GOOD...but he convinced people he was doing good. A con artist.

          Agreed that John Adams would probably rank in the top 5. A brilliant man...a noble Founding Father. His Presidency is marred with his "Alien and Sedition Act" that violated the Constitution that he admired. (He wrote a series of 'essays' on different types of governments - the good, bad and ugly, that were sold as several volumes - titled "On the Defence(sic) of the Constitutions of the United States". This was published BEFORE the 1787 Constitutional Convention...and represented 'knowledge' that many of the drafters of the Constitution would have available when trying to come up with a new form of government, where "WE THE PEOPLE" were the masters, and the government was our servant. Well worth reading.

          My candidate for the top 1 or 2 most brilliant (and accomplished) Presidents would be.....drum roll.......Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt has been considered a polymath. He was successful in many different areas. AND - most notable (and yet somewhat unknown) - he wrote over 30 books - mostly history. His first book - The Naval War of 1812 is TR's first book, published in 1882. It covers the naval battles and technology used during the War of 1812. AND - it was used at the US Naval Academy for MANY MANY years as the definitive work on the topic. There is more to justify picking TR as one of the smartest Presidents ever.

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard Teddy is an interesting (and when I say interesting that is a good thing) choice. He was an amazing man, and a pretty inspiring president. I think of him as a quantity over quality guy in terms of intelligence. An avid thinking but not a disciplined one. But I've only read one of his books, the one where he ventures into the Amazon. It was a great read. I'm surprised you would pick him since he's pretty much the guy who launched American Progressive politics, which you seem to generally dislike with great passion. Still a very respectable choice I think.

          Obama has verbal intelligence. I think there is a ton, a real ton of meaning in his speeches, not just hot air. I think that with your political leanings, you won't see the wisdom and meaning in it. And that may be why I don't find Reagan had much common sense, other than a good sense of the American moral character and values. That he was a master of.

          The "if we cut taxes, the government will lower the deficit" was not what I'd call common sense, quite the opposite. That was pure wishful thinking based on unproven economic ideas. And what happened was he was the president who really kicked of deficit spending in a big big way. His claims that the Contras were the moral equivalent of the founding fathers was downright shocking. The Contras may have been fighting communism, but their tactics were on par with ISIS, though on a much smaller scale. Murdering civilians and trafficking drugs in the name of freedom doesn't work or me. (And yes, not when Obama does it either.)

          BTW: Obama did have huge deficits, but he lowered them every single year he was in office. Like clockwork. No modern Republican can claim that, they repeatedly inflate deficits. If you want to tackle the debt, you have to tackle the deficit first, and Obama was doing that. Slowly yes, but steadily and consistently. They can't get sole credit for that, but if you are going to say he upped the debt, you have to also admit he was moving in the correct direction to solve it in the long term. If trump has his way with taxes, we will see all that work undone as they start to grow again.

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried "I'm a little surprised on the public opinion on this one."

          Max has lots of friends. I highly doubt the vote reflects public opinion on this.

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried It is frustrating talking with someone like you who makes minor criticisms of my statements (and I could defend them) ...then you add in multiple completely erroneous statements that are easy to refute but take up lots of 'ink' to reply.

          Reagan tax cuts...again - you spout what you have heard by leftist media. Look at the IRS reports on REVENUES brought in before and after the tax cuts. Revenues went UP after the tax cuts were enacted. A lower tax rate (going from 70% to 28%) and elimination of many tax shelters resulted in greater incentive to EARN more...and not get gouged by the tax man. FACT. Easy to look up. LOOK AT THE DATA....not the lies by media. The deficits were caused by an increased SPENDING. Yes - we had tax cuts that brought in more revenues. Congress also ramped up on many spending programs. To claim that the deficit was the fault of tax cuts is to totally mis-understand reality.

          Continuing on the deficit debt - every comment you made about Obama is a CLEAR LIE. Media again distorts reality. You can look up the DATA and find out how much you have been deceived. First - understand that Obama NEVER had a yearly deficit that was smaller than any Bush deficit. (AND - in fact...the Obama's smallest deficit was about 50% GREATER than Bush's largest deficit.) Media likes to do a 'slight of hand' distortion...because typically - the first year of a new President - the budget is 'on the previous President.' The media wants to blame the 2009 deficit on Bush. HOWEVER - it is a HUGE lie to do so. Congress refused to pass Bush's budget (which, if passed and followed, would have resulted in a much smaller deficit for the year than what Obama created.) Obama and Congress passed HUGE spending, big spending bills, AND a 'Recovery Spending Bill' - with the final result that the 2009 Budget was ALL OBAMA...and the $1.5 Trillion DEFICIT is all Obama. Not Bush.

          Go to this link: https://treasurydirect.gov/NP/debt/current AND - you can input dates- beginning and ending...and see how much the debt went up in that period of time. Compare Bush years to Obama years...and you will see the increased debt due to actions after 9/11/2001 attacks...then over time, a decreasing deficit/debt...until Congress was taken over by Democrats...and the deficits zoomed up. (Typical Democrat ploy ...they push for bigger spending or threaten to shut government down...and blame Republicans for the shutdown...and Republicans typically cave in.) AND - after Bush left...Obama REALLY jacked up the spending. Obama was a TOTAL failure in budgetary controls. He didn't give a damn about the average John Q Citizen's children and grandchildren - and didn't mind making things FAR worse for future generations.

          If you want to debate the facts....PULL UP THE FACTS by looking at the DATA - not Politico or other articles that distort and obfuscate.
          BTW - interesting thing that data on national debt will show....One of Obama's 'lower year's deficit' was a SHELL game. Because the Treasury had reached a Borrowing Ceiling in May/June...they were doing 'off-book borrowing' from various accounts to keep up the spending, while the total debt stayed close to the same number. About 18 - 20 days AFTER the new Fiscal Year started....(the previous year looked great for deficit - around $600 Billion..wow..that looks nice...) - Congress passed a resolution to authorize the Debt Ceiling to be raised way up. THEN - the Treasury Department suddenly borrowed in 1 -2 days - about $300+ Billion to pay back all the off-book loans. So - in a very short time frame...the national debt bounced up. Sounds like crooked book keeping. The data is there...and you can find it if you look. SO - that year that Obama had a 'low' $600+ Billion deficit....do we keep it at $600B...or acknowledge the crooked accounting techniques and report that the actual number would be closer to $900+ Billion????

          [AND - no -I am not a big fan of Teddy....I distrust Progressives. They are as bad as crooks....and actually, crooks are more honest. A crook KNOWS he is stealing from you; a Progressive claims he isn't stealing from you but is taking money for your and society's 'good' - even as many of the programs fail, hurt citizens, grow government, and in general, fail at what was promised.]

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried /*Obama did have huge deficits, but he lowered them every single year he was in office. Like clockwork. No modern Republican can claim that, they repeatedly inflate deficits. If you want to tackle the debt, you have to tackle the deficit first, and Obama was doing that. Slowly yes, but steadily and consistently.*/

          I wouldn't say it was like clockwork. If you go by the official deficit. It rose in 2011 and 2016. If you go by yearly debt increase then it went up 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2016 according to the numbers here https://www.thebalance.com/us-deficit-by-year-3306306

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard Everything I said is based on facts. You once again lined up a cadre of straw men to knock down, not one of them did I make myself. You made them up and pinned them on me. You are the one who is being utterly dishonest. If you want to call me a liar, do two things.

          1. Quote the lie I made
          2. Show me the fact that makes it a lie

          Call me a liar without doing that and I will tell you to fuck off.

          Look I talked about deficits, you talked about debts. Here is a fact for you, every year there is any deficit what so ever, there is an increase in debt.

          Another fact, we cannot get rid of the debt without running a government surplus. There is one condition that creates that, taking in more tax revenue that you spend.

          Reagan spent money like a drunken sailor and he lowered taxes. So did Bush Jr. So did Bush Sr. So will Trump. Obama and Clinton also spent money freely, but they actually tried to pay for it with taxes. The result was that both of them lowered deficits. not debt, deficits. And the only path to getting rid of the debt is to get rid of the deficits.

          Obama came into office with a massive deficit due to the recovery spending, and spending stayed high during his term, but it shrank with respect to revenues every single year. He came in on a big mess, and slowly worked to fix that mess.

          Obama increased the debt by 57%, the exact same amount as Bush Jr. Reagan increased the debt by 147% during his two terms, more than both of them combined. FDR was the only one to bet him at 186% but that was WW II and the New Deal combined.

          If you want to tell me what year you are taliing about in Obama's budget or link me to an article, I can discuss it, but your vagueness makes that difficult.

          Call me a liar one more time and I will simply block you.

        • 2 years ago

          @jrdncttr Thank you. This is the right way to correct someone. You are correct 2011 had a very small increase. And 2016 had a significant one. And I think 2016 undermines what I said about it being steady.

          I will revise to say he decreased it consistently over the course of his presidency from the dizzying height of 1.4 trillion to 570 billion, still far higher than anyone likes.

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried Block away if you must. I stated that you were reviewing and reading articles in the Main Stream Media...AND THOSE WERE LIES. Do you understand the difference? You have mis-information. GOT IT?

          Did you even attempt to use the "Debt to the Penny" (DTP) to look at the debt each year. YES - I talk both deficit and debt. I mention the DTP web site because you can input say - 20 Jan 2001 - and see what the national debt is when Bush took office. Look at 19 Jan 2009 and you see what the national debt is when he left. Do it year to year - you see what each year's deficit was. Do it for Obama....come up with a year to year evaluation of deficits each year over 16 years. Compare. Simple exercise. Set up an Excel spreadsheet and you get the numbers REAL quick.

          THEN - you can evaluate my comment that 2009 spending was NOT Bush's budget, but Obama's budget. It is reality. Do you accept it or do you reject it? If you reject it...WHY?

          You talk of debt increase - like Obama increased the debt by 57%. (Hmmm...20 Jan 2009 = nat'l debt is $10,626,877,048,913.08 and on 19 Jan 2017 - nat'l debt is $19,944,429,217,106.77. That looks like an 87.7% increase. (Common core math to call it 57%?? I won't call it a lie by you...I will call it mis-information and your SOURCE was lying.)

          And the 2009 deficit of $1.4 trillion? On Obama? BTW - again - you blame Bush for the economic collapse - but - the REAL facts are that the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) passed during the Carter Administration, then put on steroids by Clinton - COMPELLED banks to issue tons of sub-prime loans (BTW - sub prime loan means the borrower is highly likely to default). AND - Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac policy became one of increasing the portfolio of subprime loans (after all - if they fail...the taxpayer is backing these GSEs...and ends up holding the $h!t Sack). Add in the pressure to give these loans, and permit financial houses to 'repack' these crap loans as "Mortgage Backed Securities" - which would be sold as Grade A investment bonds...and lots of retirement funds (including state, county, city governments) would put them in their 'portfolios.' AND - when these sub prime loans cratered, plenty of people had 401Ks that jokingly became 201Ks. A little history - in 2002, 2003 - multiple times...Republicans WARNED that the loose Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac policies were skewing the market and could cause major problems. Democrats responded by saying the plans were working great, and they intimated that trying to end these programs that helped so many minorities was essentially 'racist.' Bush - no less than 18 times, also had warnings...and the segments on his speeches with these warnings are also on YouTube. The Mainstream Media has lied lied lied...and they suggest that since the detonation happened on Bush's watch, it is Bush's fault. AND - the MSM doesn't want people looking closely at the CRA policy and how Republicans tried to stop the problem YEARS before.

          As to Reagan 'spending money like a drunken sailor' - I object on 2 counts. 1) All the drunken sailors I know only spend their own money. 2) Congress, when Democrats have control - have a tendency to package ALL spending into a SINGLE Continuing Resolution....filled with waste and pork....and dare the President to veto it completely and be responsible for the shutdown of the government, or to eat $h!t and sign the CR and fund the government. Tough choice. BUT - who spent the money ....Reagan? Or Congress? [And - last 2 years of Bush - Congress did the same to him....HUGE spending....sign the budget OR be responsible for the government shutdown.] AND - under Obama - even with both houses controlled by Republicans, he threatened to veto ANY/ALL budgets that didn't have the spending he wanted...and he would blame Congress for the government shutdown. Held hostage, they folded. BUT - historically - when the Democrats act this way and shut the government down...the media is complicit in blaming the Republicans....and the majority of the public accepts it. SO - who is responsible for the bloated spending???? Do you even care??

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard I'll give you a pass on it since you at least tried to asuage me. I don't take well to being called dishonest. I may make mistakes, I can end up with misinformation, but when someone says what I say is a bunch of lies I get pissed off. That and your fondness for using CAPS can be pretty annoying.

          Generally speaking, I have these problems with the federal budgets.
          1. Both parties spend too much on the military, GOP especially so
          2. Democrats spend too much on social programs
          3. Republicans cut taxes way too often, and Democrats a bit too often
          4. All of them are motivated by pork barrel spending (and for good reason, they were hired by their state to represent their interests, and pork is in a state's interest)

          I think that in peacetime (which we should maximise) we should have a principled limit on federal spending as a percentage of the economy overall. When economic times are good, we should run a surplus and pay down the deficit. When economic times are bad, it's OK to do some borrowing to stimulate the economy, or because we are at war or a similar crisis.

          I find that conservatives have issues with crisis spending, I don't so much. When shit hits the fan, you need to take action to clean up the fan and get things working. The problems for me come in good times. The Democrats think that means we try to solve all the worlds ills, and the Republicans think that we need even better times and the way to do that is to cut taxes.

          I also think that in times of war, it makes sense to run a large military. But in times of peace, it makes sense to scale it back or at the minimum hold it steady. Instead, we seem to have just steadily expanded it since WW II.

          So in short: Rampant tax cuts, Rampant military spending, and rampant social spending have left us with an ever-increasing debt burden. And we've had it for far too long. I've been saying this since back when I cast my first presidential ballot for old Ross Perot.

          But when I look at the presidents in my lifetime, I see the GOP ones as the worst offenders because they do all three. They may talk about cutting social spending, but they rarely do. They constantly ramp up the military budget and they cut taxes. The Democrats do those too, but they are less aggressive on both accounts and actually raise taxes occasionally. The GOP talks about the debt the most and does the least about it.

          --- congress vs presidents ---
          Here is what rubs me raw on this subject. Whenever they don't like what happens during a president's term, they blame the president, if they like it, they give credit to Congress. Both sides do this. It's bull IMO.

          If we are going to critique the presidents for increasing deficits, we should also praise them for lowering them. Yes, it is truly a dance between the two, but since they come in and out of the office more haphazardly, we tend to focus on the executive for blame/praise. It's tradition we look to the singular leader and hold them accountable. I try to not make excuses for Obama based on Congress unless I'm talking about a single issue or bill. And even then, if Obama can't manage the politics, that is still partly on him. Same goes for every president.

          But I find it all too slippery and convenient to trash Obama for his budget and then blame Congress for Reagan's. No dice. Either the buck stops in the oval office or it doesn't.

          -- How budgets work --
          Presidents propose them, Congress fights over them, presidents sign them.
          Then, over the course of the year, supplemental spending can happen that changes them.
          2009 was a case where Bush proposed it, Congress Passed in and then right around the time of the handoff, a lot of supplemental spending took place. Much of it formulated during the transition period with input from both Bush and Obama.

          There were some famous meetings during the end of the campaign where Bush, McCain, and Obama all worked together to try and sort out what the hell to do about the collapsing housing and financial market. All three of them were pretty much in agreement that it called for some desperate action.

          So who's budget was it. Truly, all of them. The basic part was Bush, he wrote it. And he agreed to the TARP measures that were then expanded on by Obama.

          It was a crisis budget, and at least on paper, it worked. The economy didn't implode for more than a year, and we moved into a slow but steady march to where we are now.

          During that time, spending continued to go up (sadly) but revenues increased even more due to the growing economy (a good thing). But Obama didn't make any more huge spending boosts, he more or less held the line on the usual government growth. And more importantly, he didn't run any huge tax cuts. So as a result deficits are on their way down.

          Out of characters... More later perhaps I know I didn't get to all your points.

      • 2 years ago

        Going into this debate, I saw PRO as having to take the worse president in history (before Trump) and show how Trump was worse, and the CON simply had to produce a president in history that was worse than Trump. Neither took this approach, but CON did something similar the last 10 minutes of the debate and it was great.
        CON went for the knock-out punch, but in doing so he limited himeself to only allowing global warming alarmists to side with him. The route he took required him to show how Trump's actions would lead to these atrocities, but with only a 4 year term (8 at the most), it wasn't convincing that his actions doomed the human race for the long haul.
        I like how CON continued to engage in the global warming debate even though he dismissed it as irrelevant and/or inconclusive. For the reasons above, I voted CON. Sorry Max.

        • 2 years ago

          @gigi, rj in the making? ^

        • 2 years ago

          @qallout This seems typical. If a debate was on a scientific topic....would you award the 'win' to the most persuasive debater...even if the persuasive debater was WRONG? When I evaluate the debate - I look past the 'style' and look just to facts. AND - I will use my knowledge or research further if my 'gut' tells me something is amiss. For example - someone who is debating the topic of "global warming alarmism" is likely not enough of a scientist or engineer to understand a fraction of what he will put forth in the debate.....so I have to rely on more than the debaters to see if I would be "PRO" believing in the so-called "Man Made Global Warming"...or I would be opposed to it. As an engineer with a broad science background, I can evaluate claims and counter-claims...and better recognize when quoted papers/articles are more bunk than science.

          @jrdncttr relying on 'global warming' where he seems unhappy that CON 'dismissed it as irrelevant and/or inconclusive. HINT - 'global warming' is NOT 'settled science', the warming hasn't been there for almost 2 decades....and recently, scientists have been acknowledging that their models are flawed and don't work! If you have a RJ...make sure that they vote based on facts as well as style.

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard agreed, fact is important as well as style of delivery ... rational persuasion and logical reasoning (the two things we focus on when selecting a winner) actually have more to do with fact than style of delivery , but don't forget what is dismissed by one person is an obvious fact is not necessarily, for someone else, a settled fact, just like you said. That's why we debate it...

          When we scout for judges, we are not doing it based on their prioritization of argumentation style over facts, but more on their willingness to watch and provide a thorough feedback that other users may or may not agree with. Taking the time to analyze a debate and explain why they thought pro or con did a better job, and having this analysis backed by reasons , is a good start

          With regards to @jrdncttr, we did not select him to be a judge (yet), but we keep an eye out for up and coming users who could be potential judges one day

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard If you imagine the extreme example where one side gives a detailed presentation, has logical points, brings evidence, but you think his case is totally false in the real world. Then the other side says "I know you are wrong" and then that is the totality of their case. I would vote from the side that put in the effort even though I know, outside the debate that they are wrong.

          It is a competition so if only one side competes, the other side looses. I try to keep that in mind. I feel like I can only vote for the side that makes a case that logically should lead me to vote for or against the resolution.

          In competition debate, we call it "clash" aka they have to at least be addressing the other teams arguments for me to give them a win on a given point. Once they do clash, some judges feel you have to still remain totally neutral. I don't think that is truly possible. I feel that even if a point wasn't delivered especially well or with a lot of evidence if I am persuaded by it, even if that is due to my own experience, it's valid for me to weigh my views at that point.

          So in this debate. I do think the science on global warming is valid, and that we will see harmful environmental impacts, but I think it is absurd to say it poses a threat to the whole of the human race. So were I judging this, I'd have "softened the impact" claimed by pro down to only what he could substantiate with expert citations. But I'd penalize pro for almost completely ignoring Con's central case thesis, that you can't judge future events as history.

          All that said, there are no real "rules" for the audience to judge so you are fine with voting only on your own view of the resolution based on your own feelings and thoughts on it. My wife just votes for me automatically for instance.

          But that's why it is good they have judges for the tournament rounds, it ensures the debaters get a fair hearing as competitors. Debate like this is both about the issues, and also about the sport of verbal argument.

        • 2 years ago

          @qallout I have no formal debate experience or training fyi...

        • 2 years ago

          @qallout ...but I'm flattered by your interest.

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried AND - I would NEVER vote for someone who had lies (false / incorrect facts)...because that tells me the debater either did CRAPPY research and came up with lies and failed to validate them...or deliberately lied to win a debate.

          As I said...Imagine being on a jury deciding on whether to find a defendant guilty or not guilty...and one side did a crappy job, but you KNOW based on facts that the vote should go on the side of TRUTH - and not who argued the most persuasively.

          Heck - in our debate about Trans...you kept repeating a lie about 'trans have served honorably' ....yet NO transgender who was either taking hormones and was attempting to live as the other sex, or a transgender who actually had the mutilation surgery has EVER served. People who had a mental condition that they kept quiet HAVE served....but that hardly justifies how you called it.

          AND - I would be happy to engage with you in a DISCUSSION on why Global Warming Alarmism is more hype than science. HOWEVER - if you don't have a science background (advanced calculus, calculus based physics, for example)...then it is likely you more likely 'believe' as a statement of faith what you read...rather than actually understand facts. BUT - I can put together a number of inconvenient truths that take the air out of Global Warming Alarmists if they are honest with themselves.

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard Are you an atmospheric scientist? Just what is your professional background?

        • 2 years ago

          @sigfried I am an engineer - and have worked as a Nuclear Engineer, Electrical and Electronics Engineer...and I have a Professional Engineer license in Mechanical Engineering. Also certified as a Math and Science Teacher (with an emphasis on Physics). I consider myself a 'generalist' ...and I could not do the original research that many scientists do, but I have the background to evaluate methodology, equipment used, etc. ...to see what was done, and how credible it is. I have read dozens, if not hundreds, of papers - both 'pro' and 'con'..... which is why I KNOW that the science is NOT settled, there is no 97% consensus, and all the computer models Do NOT WORK.

          What is YOUR background?

        • 2 years ago

          @mvineyard I was a Software Engineer and development manager (25 years). I'm currently a freelance writer and travel blogger.

          In terms of math, I will bow to your expertise. It was never my strongest suit, though I wasn't bad at it, just don't have a taste for it.

          I have never followed the global warming debate closely because I am not an alarmist on the subject. I am a strong environmentalist in that I like the preservation of the natural environment (to some degree) and I am not fond of rampant pollution. I grew up with acid rain and burning rivers and I am very pleased we have moved beyond that.

          I find that it is common sense that if you alter the atmospheric content, it will have impacts on the atmosphere and the global climate and the plant and animal life. How much, depends on how much you alter it.

          I find the people that dismiss it out of hand, not very reputable. I find the people who are concerned about it, far more reputable. I find the people that think "the world" will end the least reputable of all. If you live just around sea level and near the sea, you should be concerned about it. If you live in the path of routine storm systems, you should be concerned about it. If you care about either group, again, worth being concerned about.

          I think being conservative about energy use and pollution is always a good idea, though you should weigh it against other interests.

          I don't buy the idea that scientists know all there is to know about the climate, not yet at any rate. There is a long way to go. But they are getting better all the time. And yes, some of their predictions turn out wrong. Some of them turn out correct.

          So I tend to come down on the side of continuing to study it, being conservative with energy use and pollution on general principles, and taking precautions in case bad things happen. In the Dev biz we call it risk management. (they probably have that in engineering too) You look at the risks and you come up with avoidance, mitigation, and contingency plans.

        • 2 years ago

          @qallout Oh I forgot, I do have experience in judging formal debates. I judged a 2 on 2 high school debate once. I was the only judge too