Socialism can mean many things - The Best Online Debate Website | DebateIsland.com - Debate Anything The Best Online Debate Website | DebateIsland.com
frame

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

The Best Online Debate Website | DebateIsland.com. The only online debate website with Casual, Persuade Me, Formalish, and Formal Online Debate formats. We’re the leading online debate website. Debate popular topics, debate news, or debate anything! Debate online for free! DebateIsland is utilizing Artifical Intelligence to transform online debating.


The best online Debate website - DebateIsland.com! The only Online Debate Website with Casual, Persuade Me, Formalish, and Formal Online Debate formats. We’re the Leading Online Debate website. Debate popular topics, Debate news, or Debate anything! Debate online for free!

Socialism can mean many things
in Politics

By billbatardbillbatard 127 Pts
the word socialism is perhaps the most misused word in the English language, that and Fascism ... Are you in favor of some sort of Socialism
The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin




Debra AI Prediction

Predicted To Win
Predicted 2nd Place
22%
Margin

Details +



Arguments

  • SharkySharky 98 Pts
    @billbatard

    Socialism and fascism both have clear definitions. They both have extensive histories as well. If either or both of them are misused or misunderstood, it's because there has been a concerted effort by ideologues to muddy the waters and to whitewash the failures and the misery they've both spawned.

    The problem with favoring "some sort of Socialism" is the classic "slippery slope" argument. The political left is never satisfied with the breadth or depth of the socialism we've accepted and instituted. They invariably demand more as they are proving right now. The end result of adopting pure socialism would inevitably mean that we'd have pure communism imposed on us by an authoritarian government. This has been the ultimate goal of the world's Marxists since 1848. 
    pistachiopants
  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 1880 Pts
    Socialism comes down to collective ownership of property. Collectivism is an awful ideology and should be drowned in a river. I am in favor of only one form of socialism: non-existing one.

    The moment you give control over any piece of property to the collective over the individual, is the moment you plant the seeds of tyranny. When the collective trumps the individual, then the individual will be enslaved by the collective's will, and the appetite of the collective will naturally grow more and more, until there is no individual left to speak of.
  • Socialism was first articulated as a temporary transitional system from Capitalism to Communism, that is the original meaning of the word, it does carry a post-capitalism mindset in its original meaning... But it has evolved to something more broad, into something challenging the supremacy of the individual over the collective, a notion I somewhat endorse. 

    I reject the slippery slope arguments because they are, well, fallacies...  
    piloteer
    " Adversus absurdum, contumaciter ac ridens! "
  • There are many words in English which have many meanings. The question is: how do those meanings arise? Well, it deals with how society uses those terms. Words acquire new meanings as society uses it in a different way.

    The word "nice" used to mean "stupid". People began using it a different way: the way we use it today, and that changed its meaning and it no longer has the meaning of "stupid".

    Some words lose meanings and gain new ones. Some words keep their old meaning and simply get more added to it. This is the case with words such as socialism, capitalism, communism, and fascism. Socialism is what is known as a "contronym". Examples of contronyms I would say we all agree are contronyms would be "Sanction" and "dust". Sanction can mean both to allow someone to do something or to punish someone economically as an incentive to get them to stop. Dust can mean to remove particles and to add particles. "Dust the house" versus "Dust for fingerprints". The former means to remove particles from your house. The latter means to add particles in order to see those fingerprints.

    This is how language is. Learn to accept it. There's no reason to stubbornly insist a word means something else when it can mean both since the word is used with multiple definitions.

    The purpose of language is to communicate effectively. If you're using a term that causes confusion to other people(i.e they think it means something else), then perhaps you should use a different term and come to an understanding with that person. Come to an agreement with a term you both agree the definition to is.

    Perhaps you think socialism means what scandinavia has while your opponent thinks it means what the USSR has. Well, perhaps you could instead use the term "Social Democracy" or they could use the term "Marxist-Leninism" or some other synonym you both agree applies to Scandinavia, as in the case of Social Democracy, or the USSR, as the case with "Marxist-Leninism".

    To answer your question, I consider myself a socialist, however I shy from using that term since it's often one that causes miscommunication. As I said, language is meant to communicate effectively, so using the word socialism tends to fail for that purpose. I tend to identify as a "Geolibertarian with mutualist leanings", as I've found no one disagrees with me on what those terms mean.
    piloteerThief
    "Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal."
    -Albert Camus, Notebook IV
  • To add to what I said, I'm not sure we can really call any word "misused" if the definitions of words change based on how society uses it. I argue the proper use of language is however society is using it.

    Now, this sounds like the ad populum fallacy. Many people seem to understand the basics of fallacies, but they don't understand the advanced concepts. I'll teach you one now: there are exceptions to fallacious rules.

    Ad Populum is a logical argument when the topic at hand is dependent on popularity. Indeed, the earth being round is not something subject to popularity, but certain topics are, so to use an ad populum argument for a subject that is dependent on popularity is not a fallacy whatsoever. In the case of language, since the purpose of it is to effectively communicate with society, then ad populum is a logical argument: indeed, it may be the only logical argument actually as it pertains to language.

    What's the use of arguing socialism means what you claim it does if you're the only one who thinks it does? Language's purpose is to communicate to others, and if you are so stubborn as to stick to one archaic definition no one uses, you are an absolute failure as it pertains to communicating with others, and that is the real misuse of language: when you can't seem to communicate with anyone.

    Another fallacy with exceptions is slippery slope. A slippery slope argument can be a logical argument. But it's more often not, but it can be. If the person arguing a slippery slope argument provides sufficient evidence between each of the steps from A to conclusion Z, say "If we let this small thing happen, it will lead to this huge terrible outcome way in the future" if they provide solid evidence for every single step, it's a completely legitimate argument and not a fallacy.

    This seems to be something many people don't realize as it pertains to fallacies. Many of them, if argued properly, are not actually fallacies. These arguments: slippery slope or ad populum, are fallacies only when misused, but both can be legitimately logical arguments from time-to-time.
    Thief
    "Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal."
    -Albert Camus, Notebook IV
  • AmpersandAmpersand 673 Pts
    There are many words in English which have many meanings. The question is: how do those meanings arise? Well, it deals with how society uses those terms. Words acquire new meanings as society uses it in a different way.

    The word "nice" used to mean "stupid". People began using it a different way: the way we use it today, and that changed its meaning and it no longer has the meaning of "stupid".

    Some words lose meanings and gain new ones. Some words keep their old meaning and simply get more added to it. This is the case with words such as socialism, capitalism, communism, and fascism. Socialism is what is known as a "contronym". Examples of contronyms I would say we all agree are contronyms would be "Sanction" and "dust". Sanction can mean both to allow someone to do something or to punish someone economically as an incentive to get them to stop. Dust can mean to remove particles and to add particles. "Dust the house" versus "Dust for fingerprints". The former means to remove particles from your house. The latter means to add particles in order to see those fingerprints.

    This is how language is. Learn to accept it. There's no reason to stubbornly insist a word means something else when it can mean both since the word is used with multiple definitions.

    The purpose of language is to communicate effectively. If you're using a term that causes confusion to other people(i.e they think it means something else), then perhaps you should use a different term and come to an understanding with that person. Come to an agreement with a term you both agree the definition to is.

    Perhaps you think socialism means what scandinavia has while your opponent thinks it means what the USSR has. Well, perhaps you could instead use the term "Social Democracy" or they could use the term "Marxist-Leninism" or some other synonym you both agree applies to Scandinavia, as in the case of Social Democracy, or the USSR, as the case with "Marxist-Leninism".

    To answer your question, I consider myself a socialist, however I shy from using that term since it's often one that causes miscommunication. As I said, language is meant to communicate effectively, so using the word socialism tends to fail for that purpose. I tend to identify as a "Geolibertarian with mutualist leanings", as I've found no one disagrees with me on what those terms mean.
    I generally agree with language being subjective, variable, based on usage etc.

    However I think a few things are worth noting:

    1) I feel the usage of socialism conflating with liberalism was generated based on a disingenuous point of view. The cold war hatreds of the USA and USSR made socialism a handy slur to toss at people that weren't socialist to delegitimise them.

    2) Definitions relevance depend on context. In a conversation about building equipment I wouldn't insist that "Crane" referred to a bird. In a discussion about socialism, the technical and relevant definition should be applicable rather than a non-technical version mostly used as a slur.

    3) This seems to me to be quite a national thing and prominent largely in the USA. If we're basing it on popular usage, I personally think most people don't conflate socialism with any leftist position.
    piloteerPlaffelvohfen
  • SharkySharky 98 Pts
    It seems you are all missing the point in this debate. Opposing socialism doesn't require that we understand the finer points of using the language or understanding fallacies or any of that. Opposing socialism only requires that we understand basic human nature.  

    Very simply, socialism involves the collective ruling over the individual to bring about the things that the society prioritizes for its people. This is why socialist societies almost invariably have universal public education, universal health care, minimum standards for nutrition, housing, clothing, fuel and all other necessities of life for the individual.

    It all sounds great until it becomes apparent that government promises to provide all human needs crushes the natural human drive not only to survive but to advance, innovate and excel. When the hardest-working and most intelligent members of society realize no additional reward for their efforts and are treated the same as the slowest slacker or the most cunning parasite, they will nearly always begin to feel used and under appreciated. They develop a cynicism and a resentment for the society that fails to recognize their superior efforts. In general, they will eventually cease putting forth the efforts that make them stand apart and the society will stop reaping the benefits of having them as members. As productivity slowly dries up, the society becomes poorer and less able to provide all of the goods and services that have been promised.

    This cycle has repeated itself all over the world for over a hundred years. It's slower to take hold in heterogeneous societies like you see in Scandinavia or in Japan but the detrimental effects socialism has on the incentive/reward system cannot help but appear after a period of time. Although socialists worldwide like to point to Scandinavia as a shining example of socialist success, the cracks are beginning to appear and to grow. Watch for these societies to begin rejecting socialism in the very near future as they watch their GDPs stagnate and their most productive citizens emigrate to friendlier environs where their talents are appreciated and rewarded.  


  • @Sharky
    Your ignorant and anti-scientific statements are laughable.
    Firstly, your attack on socialism is doubly hilarious, but we'll focus on your first comment, then your second. If we have "pure communism imposed on us by an authoritarian government," the government would cease to exist. That is because communism is a society with the absence of the state, money and class. In this comment, you didn't actually state what was wrong with socialism, so we won't talk about that yet. What I will talk about is your eager dive into participation of the "slippery slope" argument. You see, in order for this to work, you have to demonstrate how we will go from Social Democracy, a capitalist ideology, to Socialism, a distinctly anti-capitalist ideology. Somehow, through increased welfare and taxes, we will change the structure of the workplace? It's simply absurd.

    Secondly, moving onto your magnum opus, your second comment. First of all, you make the claim that humans having everything they need to survive will mean that they have no will to advance, innovate and excel. If this were the case then you should be totally for stripping all people who have achieved any amount of money, of their wealth, since it means that they will return to a state where, apparently, they will advance, innovate and excel. Of course, this is ridiculous. We all know that homeless people are not the ones leading in scientific innovation, which your comment would seem to suggest. On the other hand, people who can stop worrying about the constant need to survive can actually begin to make meaningful innovations. Then, we follow on to a total non-sequiter. Apparently, Socialism ensures that each person will reap the same rewards regardless of their work. This is false. We can take two examples. Firstly, while I find the Soviet Union to not be socialist, you might, so it's worth it to use is as an example. In this nation, productivity was rising before the war with Germany, and finally rose dramatically towards the end of the war. If you don't take the Soviet Union as a socialist example, then a collective workplace, the co-operative, is more productive than the traditional business.

    Finally, the fact that any society is "heterogenous" makes no difference. In fact, I don't think that word means what you think it means. I think the word you were looking for was homogenous. Regardless, the "cracks" you seem to think are showing are, I presume, the growing Fascist movements within these countries. The Sweden Democrats, a party founded by many Swedish fascists is on the rise in Sweden. This is due to the capitalist class seeking to retain its power. I'm sure we can both agree that this is a rational path for the capitalist class to take: it only makes sense for capitalists to act in their self interest, and if they are being increasingly taxed and more and more obligations are made of them, it only makes sense for them to try and destroy the class struggle which creates these conditions. Fascism, an ideology focused on, among many things, class collaboration is, therefore, not coincidentally rising in popularity. Advertisements and propaganda, which are shown to have a measurable impact on the actions of people, are the cause for this surge of fascist support. 
    Plaffelvohfen
  • TKDBTKDB 268 Pts
    edited July 26
    Socialism means the below:

    Because socialism, and the socialists ideology, are beneficial unto themselves, and to their Socialists constituents, or fanbases as well, bypassing the rest of the country, with its anti public, Socialists wake.
  • @TKDB
    Socialism simply means this: the collective ownership of the means of production by the workers that use them. While the relationship to the means of production also changes relationships between people, this is an effect of socialism, not its primary goal. The conflict which exists between worker and capitalist, that is, that one side seeks to continuously cut wages and hire less people; and the side which wishes to raise their wages and be hired, is solved by the democratisation of the means of production.

    Similar to the fact that each citizen in the country they live in should get a vote due to the fact that all actions of a political party will have an effect on them (excluding obvious exceptions such as very young people), then so should the workers in a company control what happens to themselves.
Sign In or Register to comment.

Back To Top

DebateIsland.com

| The Best Online Debate Experience!
2019 DebateIsland.com, All rights reserved. DebateIsland.com | The Best Online Debate Experience! Debate topics you care about in a friendly and fun way. Come try us out now. We are totally free!

Contact us

customerservice@debateisland.com
Awesome Debates
BestDealWins.com
Terms of Service

Get In Touch