Onwards and Upwards to a Better Planet!
It is my philosophy and also personal experience that a positive outlook or positive emphasis/bias strengthens ones abilities to make good
contributions and therefore is something needed if we want to make the world a better place.
Before this debate I thought I might be wearing rose-coloured glasses. But the research for this forced me to find some hard scientific data and get
my facts straight about the world. And so I discovered
that its not a positive bias I have but one quite realistic and congruent with what is
I think that with the two combined sources "Satisfaction of Life Index" and "Human Development Index" I have already proven what everyone actually
already senses to some extent: Life on earth is generally and in an overall
sense getting better.
I admit it is getting better very slowly
and there are plenty of problems
we face (thanks to my opponent for pointing them out), but the
overall progression in quality of life, standard of living and general happiness has been proven and the debate-point "The world is getting better
and better" already conclusively shown.
What my opponent is now doing, instead of adressing the data presented, instead of refuting the graphs shown, he is picking the foulest of cherries
from the overall sum of trees
...just like the 8 oclock news taught him to do it.
His case can only stand by being very, very picky. Examples:
My opponent says:
The global HIV/AIDS Pandemic has risen to it’s highest level ever according to the World Health Organization.
So lets just ignore all the aspects of life quality that have gone up
and lets ignore that most illnesses we fought with in the 18th Century
and lets just ignore that cancer rates are
and pick this foulest of cherries as "evidence that the end is nigh".
HIV is mostly an issue in those countries shown by the "Life Satisfaction Index" not to be up to speed YET
. But as evidenced, they are on
their way there as health-education increases is dissemated to more and more parts of the world.
My opponent also writes:
As I have shown previously many places on our planet are in a state of war.
And I have shown that many are not. In fact, we´ve already established that most
Our country is in the midst of a war. To point out a flaw in my opponent’s graphic we in this country cannot be at a state of peace when we are
actively fighting two separate wars in the world.
My graphs referred to "Life Satisfaction" and "World Development", not only to peace, for reasons already stated.
My opponent then continues to cite statistics on the Homeless. Two errors in this:
1. He fails to prove that they are on the rise. Citing stats how they currently are does not equal stats over a timeline
. Since the debate
topic is "getting better and better" rebuttals have to be shown on a time-scale or time-graph.
2. He refers to things as they are in the United States, as if the U.S. were the only country in the world.
foul-cherry-picking necessary to convince someone of doom and gloom.
Half of my opponents post is spent with the 5000 year vs. 30 years question. I do admit that I may have misunderstood his question. But since my
opponent has still not proven a decline of life quality and standard of living either
in a 5000 year span or in a 30 year span, I fail to see
his point in emphasizing it
In a self-defeating manner my opponent then presents this piece of FBI-data:
The stats, which we collected from more than 11,700 law enforcement agencies nationwide, show a rise in violent crime for the second straight year.
The increase, however, is less than the 2.3 percent figure reported for 2005 and the 3.7 percent increase reflected in the preliminary six-month
report for 2006 released in December.
Foul-cherry-picking a 2-year span, ignoring the 3-year-span or even the 10-year span. Oh and by the way...what is the percentage of people who dont
My opponent continues:
The horrors of Darfur also, while no longer having the media attention it briefly held are still going on. There are 300,000 people that I can safely
say that do not share my opponent’s optimistic view of the world getting better. These people men women and children are no longer breathing thanks
to this world becoming a better place to live in.
Yes. In the Life Satisfaction Index above, Ive already shown which parts of the globe are "wounded" or troublesome and which are not. Darfur is one
of the troubled spots. This changes nothing in the overall data presented.
And my opponent further:
Half of the world according to the United Nations lives on less than two dollars a day, refuting my opponent’s optimistic claim that people are
Again, the debate topic of "getting better and better" implies a gradual improvement comparing the past to the present and future estimates. If my
opponent would like to counter my facts, time-comparisons are needed.
I understand that my opponent takes on the "the end is nigh" attitude for the purpose of this debate. But outside of it, the widespread fear in
contradiction of the facts
does pose a serious problem and works to the deteriment and general dumbing-down-into-apathy of many people.
Where might this general fear and rampant distrust in the face of an overall good situation come from?
1. Media-Brainwashing and Problem-Reaction-Solution
Cant sell any products without someone creating a problem first, right?
2. The Mean World Syndrome
With all due respect to the very serious problems we face as a humanity, those who continually distort everything to mean something bad on a regular
basis might be suffering "The Mean World Syndrome"
3. We´re just not there yet.
But at least we´re slowly getting better and better.
So upwards and onwards...
dont give in to fear and apathy. Fight the forces of oppression, suppression and depression by lending hope, a helping hand and the strength only
found in an overall positive attitude.
(1-4 are on the biggest events of the last century)
1. Is it a good thing that the Nazi´s were defeated in WW2?
2. Is it a good thing that the iron curtain between east and west fell?
3. Is it safe to say that the industrial revolution meant progress for us?
4. Is it safe to say that the Internet was a revolution in the way we communicate globally?
5. Do you realize people have been saying "the end is near" since the beginning of civilization?