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Round 1. Truttseeker vs. Rdube02: Viva La Revolucion

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posted on Mar, 27 2006 @ 08:13 AM
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The topic for this debate is "Latin America is on the verge of a continent wide socialist revolutions".

Truttseeker will be arguing the pro position and will open the debate.
Rdube02 will argue the con position.

Each debater will have one opening statement each. This will be followed by 3 alternating replies each. There will then be one closing statement each and no rebuttal.

No post will be longer than 800 words and in the case of the closing statement no longer than 500 words.

Credits or references at the bottom do not count towards the word total.

Editing is strictly forbidden. This means any editing, for any reason. Any edited posts will be completely deleted.

Opening and closing statements must not contain any images, and must have no more than 3 references. Excluding both the opening and closing statements, only one image and no more than 5 references can be included for each post.

Responses should be made within 24 hours, if people are late with their replies, they run the risk of forfeiting their reply and possibly the debate.

Judging will be done by a panel of anonymous judges. After each debate is completed it will be locked and the judges will begin making their decision. One of the debate forum moderators will then make a final post announcing the winner.

This debate is now open, good luck to both of you

[edit on 27-3-2006 by Nygdan]

[edit on 27-3-2006 by Nygdan]




posted on Mar, 27 2006 @ 08:21 PM
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First off I would like to say thank you for the opportunity to participate in this debate. Good luck to my opponent and all others in the tournament.

Latin America is sometimes seen as a paradise. The brutal fact is that a lot of Latin America is encompassed in very hard economic times, and poor social conditions. Inflation is rampant and there are massive debts that have been accumulating for many many years. There have been attempts to try to quell the debts but many attempts have failed. Drug cartels and corrupt government has taken place.

There is however one solution that would seem to help take all of these problems away. That would be to turn them all into socialist republics. There the wealth would be shared by all and a lot of peoples plights would be for the most part gone. All industry would come under government control and could be regulated. This would help a lot of debt and is the main reason why a socialist system would work. Many people from the poor side see this, and may soon try to push a socialist revolution to help the countries out.



posted on Mar, 27 2006 @ 09:40 PM
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I would also like to thank the moderators of these debates, as well as the judges for their efforts. And I would like to wish the best of luck to my opponent and all other debaters.

Latin America is a conglomeration of republics, with various leaders and governments who share many different political ideas and opinions regarding the best solution to the social and economic problems facing society throughout Latin America.

In this debate, I will show how many of the problems facing Latin America, not the least of which are economic, are the forces that are preventing a true socialist revolution in Latin America. I will provide in some detail, the reasons why the international economic stronghold on Latin America will serve to derail and outright prevent any meaningful revolution of any sort. I will also show how the class structure and the status quo within Latin America even ties the hands of Latin American governments from moving forward and bettering the lives of their own people. There is no doubt that while conditions for the people of Latin America would normally serve as a catalyst for revolution, the reality is that a true socialist revolution will never take place under current global conditions.



posted on Mar, 28 2006 @ 08:42 PM
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I personally think that the conditions are ripe for a revolution to take place. As my opponent said there are many issues plaguing all aspects of Latin American life. There is massive corruption in government, drug cartels run rampant, and industry is in shambles. The only thing that his happening that the rich are getting richer, and the poor are already so poor its hard to go any lower.
The conditions found today in Latin America are very close to what was found in the times before the socialist revolutions in China, and the former Soviet Union. The climate seems to be very very close to what could be found before those environments. In El Salvidor there were Marxist guerrillas that came to power, which proves that people are for the idea.



posted on Mar, 29 2006 @ 11:34 AM
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To truly understand the current situation of Latin America, one must understand its long and embattled history. While we don’t have time to cover the entire history of Latin America, I would like to focus on the actions of the United States throughout Latin American history, to show how intertwined U.S. history is with Latin American history – how this history has a profound impact on the current social conditions of the Latin American people.

Some examples of U.S. intervention throughout history are as follows. Each of these served to further U.S. control over Latin America, its people, and its politics:

- 1898, the Spanish-American War – where the U.S. takes control of Puerto Rico, the Phillippines, and Guam.
- 1903, Roosevelt intervenes to assist with Panama’s independence from Columbia.
- 1903-1933, US Marines intervene in Nicaragua.
- 1914 – US forces occupy Vera Cruz, Mexico.
- 1915-1934, US Marines occupy Haiti.
- 1954, CIA overthrows the government of Arbenz in Guatemala.
- 1960, CIA plots to depose or assassinate Fidel Castro (“Operation Mongoose”).
- 1961 we have the failed Bay of Pigs invasion.
- 1964 the Brazilian President Goulart is overthrown by the military with covert US support.
- 1965 US forces occupy the Dominican Republic.
- 1970-73 US and multinational corporations work covertly to overthrow the socialist government of Salvador Allende in Chile.
- 1983, Reagan orders US forces to invade Granada to halt Cuban airstrip work.
- 1989, Bush Sr. orders invasion of Panama to capture dictator Noriega.
- 1994 we have the threatened invasion of Haiti by US troops.

Throughout the 1990’s, while the U.S. enjoyed the riches of the dot-com boom, multi-national corporations and their governments exploited the land and resources of Latin America. This caused extremely difficult economic hardship for the Latin American people. Because of rampant poverty, drug trafficking increased, Latin American’s foreign debt continued to climb to historic levels, and Latin America became more and more economically dependant on multi-national investors and foreign “aid” packages.

The people who find they suffer from an economy where inflation exceeds income to the point where they can’t survive, have tried to protest by electing leftist presidents and protesting free trade and American imperialism. People have considered Latin America on the “Verge” of a socialist revolution for many generations.

The people have tried to revolt against the U.S. imperialism by protesting “free trade” and electing leaders like Hugo Chávez of Venezuela. Who has actually succeeded at increasing Venezuela’s GNP by 18%, a 50% decrease in the inflation rate, overall income has risen by 20% since Chavez took office, and growth of public services went up by 30% in 2004 alone.

What this means is that Chavez is making Venezuala more self-sufficient and less dependent on foreign governments, it has natural resources and many goods to trade internationally. His government enacted land reforms where all idle lands were taken from the rich land barons and used to provide people work and increase national production levels.

What is the reaction from the governments of those rich multi-national corporations, in particular the United States? Those who oppose Chavez and try to ferment protests and acts of sabotage against the Chavez government have the full approval of the current Bush administration – as well as all other rich governments with economic interest in keeping the poor people of Latin America poor, so that the rich multi-national companies can remain rich. The people of Latin American – even the governments of Latin America themselves, have lost control of their own countries.

The people can revolt against their government and elect new leaders all they like. Their country, regardless of rule, is overburdened by billions of dollars of foreign debt. The poor population in Latin America is bound by this debt. It is the one method by which the rich maintain their economic interests, and it is the method by which the poor are kept poor.

Many countries, like Argentina, use 52% of their exports to pay the interest alone on their debt. This heavy economic burden would prevent the development of any country. And that is exactly what the multi-national private interests want. As much as the people revolt or change governments, the fact is that the debt remains, and must be paid. Those who hold control over Latin America and oppress its people are most of the richest countries of the world. These countries will make sure that there is no successful socialist revolution, because ultimately they have full control over Latin America thanks to foreign debts. In effect, Latin America is owned. There will be no successful socialist revolution as long as international debts continue to provide economic and political control of Latin America to foreign countries.

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(Microsoft Word Count: 783)

References:

- lanic.utexas.edu... - 1985 interview with Castro
- “Latin America: In Defense of Venezuelan Revolution” by Franz Lee of Narconews
- legacy.ncsu.edu... - Timeline of Latin American History since 1826



posted on Mar, 29 2006 @ 12:21 PM
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As my opponent has stated many of the richest countries in the world own a lot of Latin America. This however has done nothing to stop Cuba from becoming a socialist republic. Many of the richest countries ie the United States would not want to go to war just over some banana republics. The debts owed by Latin America are indeed very substantial.
But it has been proven that the democratic process has failed horribly. There is rampant corruption, and under current form of government there is nothing that can be done. Cuba is currently a communist government, and no nations have really done much to stop it. The United States' attempts were mostly to keep Soviet forces off of the backdoor of the the mainland. Now that the Soviet threat has diminished communist Cuba is not really seen as a priority to the United States.
As it has been stated many people are out of work in Latin America, and there is massive inflation. With a socialist government in place to rally the country, there could be massive output. It is common fact that Latin America has resources that could be used in industry. This would in turn put many people to work if the Government could take control and start industry where there was none before. Government control would also quell inflation, and make prices reasonable.
In Venezuela democratic institutions are falling to socialism under Hugo Chavez, yet his popularity is higher, and its economy is actually on the rise.

Oh yes, and Phillipines, Guam, and Puerto Rico really dont have much to do with the discussion



posted on Mar, 29 2006 @ 03:03 PM
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I would like to quickly respond to a few of my worthy opponents statements, then I would like to follow up with a few more comments to further support the statement that a socialist revolution will not take place in Latin America under current global conditions.


Originally posted by truttseeker
Many of the richest countries ie the United States would not want to go to war just over some banana republics.


History has proven otherwise. As I stated in my previous post, two examples in most recent history would be the 1989 invasion of Panama to capture Noriega, and the 1994 threatened invasion of Haiti by U.S. troops. The 1989 invasion was justified by President Bush on December 20 as defending democracy and human rights, combating drug trafficking, and maintaining the “neutrality” of the Panama canal (a.k.a. – maintaining control over a major route of international commerce). The 1994 threatened invasion of Haiti was a justified threat by Clinton, for human rights and the refusal of military authorities to leave power.

The point is this – the United States would indeed use force over “some banana republics”. History has proven this.



The United States' attempts were mostly to keep Soviet forces off of the backdoor of the the mainland. Now that the Soviet threat has diminished communist Cuba is not really seen as a priority to the United States.


While military intervention was used in the case of Cuba in order to fend off the Communist threat – it wasn’t the only reason force was ever used or threatened in Latin America. See my previous post with many examples of such force. The 1989 and 1994 interventions mentioned above had no mention of communism as a justification. In fact, on December 20, just after the invasion of Panama began, Bush Sr. provided a statement of the justifications for the invasion. None of those included the threat of communism.



In Venezuela democratic institutions are falling to socialism under Hugo Chavez, yet his popularity is higher, and its economy is actually on the rise.


Indeed, and my point was this. Given the positive influences that Chavez has on the lives of the people of Venezuela and the encouraging influence this could have for the people of Latin America as a whole – the United States and other rich countries are against Chavez and attempt to remove him from power.

Why?

Because U.S. and mulit-national economic interests are driving foreign powers to prevent the self-sufficiency of Venezuela and other Latin American republics from taking place. Because the more self-sufficient they become, the less control over their resources foreign nations and companies will have.

The U.S. and other rich foreign nations will put on a front of fighting for democracy and human rights – however on the other hand they will undertake covert operations in order to disrupt any sort of socialist revolution that will unite the twenty Republics of Latin America. History has shown that the U.S. is very willing to use covert force to disrupt the normal political processes of Latin America.

In addition, U.S. and other foreign nations with economic interests in Latin America will use the overwhelming foreign debt of Latin American republics to control these regions through the threat of reduced or removed foreign aid packages and other economic forceful measures. It is for these reasons that a socialist revolution to unite and empower the people of Latin America will fail. Because foreign powers will ensure that it fails.


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Reference 1



posted on Mar, 29 2006 @ 03:31 PM
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Well, what is the United States going to do. If they cut off the aid, then that will actually empower the cause of the Latin Americans. People like Chavez would actually be more empowered, and people would see him as a hero for defying the United States. If anything then the cutting of aid would speed along conditions for the revolution.
Also, the United States government has definitly tried to use covert tecniques to persuade the politics in the region. They have however failed. They have done nothing about Chavez, and all attempts on Castros life has failed. The only reason that Noriega and Haiti fell was because it was a direct threat to the US and its interests.
A socialist revolution would actually pay off to the US. If a continental socialist government was formed then it could consolidate its debt. People would be put to work, and if it was for the most part successful then the government could control industry, and it would actually be profitable. People would be put to work, and leaders would be glorified. If the government was smart then it would prove itself to be peaceful. This would curb any US hostility, and the shipping coming through would pay off as well.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 11:50 AM
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Unfortunately, with all due respect, I believe my opponent has completely missed the point of this debate entirely. The question posed here is not whether or not a socialist revolution would benefit the people of Latin America. There’s very little doubt that a revolution and unification of the region would empower the people to take control of the resources within their own country and become self-sufficient, more productive, and would serve to produce a booming economy.

However that is not the question we’ve been debating here. The question is whether or not Latin America is on the verge of such a revolution. The answer is no, as I have shown in my previous posts. The region has seen revolutions throughout its history – overthrown governments and military takeovers. But a region-wide unifying socialist revolution is not about to happen.

I’m afraid my opponent has missed a valuable opportunity here to discuss this important issue. It seems his attitude is a laissez-faire one (just leave the issue alone & let it take care of itself), and unfortunately a large majority of Americans share this same attitude regarding Latin America. What interest do we have in third-world republics, and why should we bother ourselves with this region of the world?

I’ll tell you why – because these regions, allowed to expand and grow as free economies, and unburdened by the outside pressures and influences of foreign power, would become strong and powerful markets which would only serve to bolster world economies.


Originally posted by truttseeker
Well, what is the United States going to do. If they cut off the aid, then that will actually empower the cause of the Latin Americans. People like Chavez would actually be more empowered, and people would see him as a hero for defying the United States. If anything then the cutting of aid would speed along conditions for the revolution.


This is a fantastic question and I’m glad you asked it. I was hoping to be able to get to the discussion of a solution – so your timing is perfect.

No - the cutting of aid would only serve to drive the people of Latin America further into poverty. Social services would be the first to go, and the social conditions would plummet even further. That would be a harsh and irresponsible solution.

The solution, is to unlock the chains of debt that rich countries are using to keep the people of Latin America poor and oppressed. Should we forgive the debts? Absolutely not – that would be irresponsible as well. Whether we’re talking about a family or a country, debt is debt and it must be paid.

Latin American countries are saddled with enormous debt as a percentage of GNI (gross national income). 2004 numbers show that Chile ‘s debt is 63% of national income. Argentina’s 66%. Ecuador is 95%. The daunting list goes on. And these countries are struggling simply to maintain paying the interest alone on such debt. However, should the United States and other rich countries simply allow the deferment of such debt payments for a fixed number of years, interest free, this would result in a huge infusion of income for each suffering country. This money, instead of being paid to countries who are already wealthy, would instead go toward improving infrastructure, improving social programs, and creating new opportunities to expand, grow, and provide more jobs to the jobless population. Debt is what is holding this region back from expansion. And the interest on that debt is the poison that is killing the people.

It is this debt that will prevent any meaningful socialist revolution. Governments may change, but the debt will always remain. It is the sword by which rich nations maintain control over the human and natural resources of Latin America. And unless we, as a free and wealthy nation, change the way our government deals with third-world countries and how our government’s policies there effect the well-being of those populations – then the people of those countries will forever be held back from creating real change, from starting a socialist revolution, and from uniting Latin America as a powerful economic force. The first changes can’t come from within Latin America, the changes first need to come from the wealthy nations of the world.


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Reference 1



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 02:11 PM
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Okay, It may seem as if I have missed the point as my opponent has said. But what would be the point of arguing that Latin America is on the verge of a socialist revolution if I don' talk about how it would benefit the people. The point of a revolution is usually to benefit people. The point I'm trying to get across is that if Latin America went through a redistribution of wealth in a socialist revolution, people would be better off.
They would have to nationalize industry, but in doing that, that gives them a solid base to work on. Nationalizing industry would do nothing but give a Latin American contintental government way more power. It would give them a way to pay off the debts owed. Sure the United States would like the economic hold they have, but why keep a place that you have to keep throwing money into? If a socialist government would mean being payed back to the United States, then thats a good on them.
You may say, oh well I'm not debating whether a revolution is just an the horizon, but I am. What would be the point of a revolution if theres no problem. I'm highlighting the problems, to give a reference as to why there would be even the hint of a revolution. Look at everything, the debts, the social conditions, the way the governments are working. Its a breeding ground for revolution, people are getting sick of it. A nearly socialist leader in Venezuela is taking hold and he's very popular. Oh boo hoo if the US and allies cut the aid, that would just give the people reason to make the continent socialist. It's against the US's wishes, and it puts people to work. Sure the US may try to kill the socialist leaders, but they can't kill all of the innocents who support it.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 07:44 PM
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In closing, I would like to point out that while this topic is one not many people discuss very much in newspaper editorials or online forums, it is actually a topic that has many ramifications in modern politics and U.S. international relations. The issue of Latin America is a reflection of how the United States and other wealthy foreign countries treat developing countries. It reflects how the actions of foreign countries serve their own national interests and not the interest of those developing countries or their people.

For anyone who believes that furthering the economies of developing countries will result in a blossoming global economy, our primary goal should be providing proper footing for these developing countries to “catch up” with the rest of the world. The largest issue preventing such development and impeding a much-needed socialist unification of Latin America, is foreign debt. It is the one area where we as developed nations can provide assistance without providing handouts. But until wealthy countries release this stranglehold they have on the economies, governments, and people of Latin America – a unifying socialist revolution of the region will never successfully take place.

Thanks again to the moderators, to my opponent, and best of luck to the remaining debaters.



posted on Mar, 30 2006 @ 07:59 PM
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Excellent points made by both contenders. The judges will now review the debate and make a decision.



posted on Apr, 3 2006 @ 11:31 PM
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And the winner is.....

Rdube02!

Congrats!


A selection of comments:


Truttseeker did bring up some good points, they never came across as anything but opinions. Rdube02 made good points, backed them up and challenged his opponents points quite well



Rdube presented the better argument, and he validated his contentions using appropriate sources



Truthseeker [...]was able to present researched facts to back up his/her point of view.



A facet of the question that could have served truttseeker's argument well, the issue of debt slavery, ended up being used by his opponent instead, the nail in the proverbial coffin.



. Rdube02 went into much more depth and was able to back up his talking points with facts. While truttseeker had good points, they did not expand on these points enough or provide references.


Again, an excellent job to both. Truttseeker, we all look forward to your possible return in the next debate, wherein you may seek your revenge!

Rbude02, you are on to Round 2!



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