• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every persons position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

Does Capitalism force a percentage of the population to live in poverty?

Does capitalism force a percentage of a countries population into poverty?>

  • Yes

    Votes: 13 52.0%
  • No

    Votes: 11 44.0%
  • Not Sure

    Votes: 1 4.0%

  • Total voters
    25

creativedreams

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
2,730
Reaction score
232
Location
Timbuktu
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
Just curious of everyones opinions of the "Western Influence" and what your thoughts on a capitalism form of society are?

Please explain why you like it or dislike it and if you have any better ideas on how to govern a country please elaborate...
 

DarkWizard12

Conservative Independent
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 9, 2007
Messages
10,138
Reaction score
2,260
Location
Tyler TX
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
Just curious of everyones opinions of the "Western Influence" and what your thoughts on a capitalism form of society are?

Please explain why you like it or dislike it and if you have any better ideas on how to govern a country please elaborate...
It depends on the relation. Poverty in Africa is hardly Poverty in Michigan.
 

creativedreams

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
2,730
Reaction score
232
Location
Timbuktu
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
It depends on the relation. Poverty in Africa is hardly Poverty in Michigan.
Is there a way to ensure no poverty and a way to somehow get everyone in a society to connect....and not want to rob out of jealousy???
 

Hatuey

Rule of Two
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 17, 2006
Messages
53,358
Reaction score
21,361
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
Free exchange has been the single largest contributor, to bringing people out of poverty, more than anything else.
That's not what he's asking and I'd counter that education has brought far more people out of poverty than 'free exchange'. He's asking whether it forces a percentage of the population to live in poverty and it most certainly does. Some kid in Bangladesh needs to be paid $20 a month so that some fat kid in the U.S. can get clothes at Wal-Mart for $4.99. From the beginning of capitalist history somebody has had to accept crappy wagers so that a commodity can exist for somebody else.

Look at African countries. Nobody questions why some of the metals in the Playstation 3 come from African mines where workers are exposed to dangerous toxins. Nobody questions why the free exchange as you call it, allows companies to treat thousands of men as its slaves. However every time a new game comes out you see thousands in line for it.

Again, it's all about perspective. You may not think that 'the free exchange' has made entire markets that feed off slaves around the world but it has. Not only that, it has created a growing gap between the rich and the poor but read any reliable economic news report on poverty levels if you don't believe me. As globalism and free trade expand you start seeing more and more countries with widening poor-rich gaps.
 
Last edited:

DarkWizard12

Conservative Independent
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 9, 2007
Messages
10,138
Reaction score
2,260
Location
Tyler TX
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
Is there a way to ensure no poverty and a way to somehow get everyone in a society to connect....and not want to rob out of jealousy???
Nope, people are different. Some people don't get jealous, some do. some rob others, some don't. Some want to interact, some don't.
 

Harry Guerrilla

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
28,955
Reaction score
12,423
Location
Not affiliated with other libertarians.
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
That's not what he's asking and I'd counter that education has brought far more people out of poverty than 'free exchange'. He's asking whether it forces a percentage of the population to live in poverty and it most certainly does. Some kid in Bangladesh needs to be paid $20 a month so that some fat kid in the U.S. can get clothes at Wal-Mart for $4.99. From the beginning of capitalist history somebody has had to accept crappy wagers so that a commodity exists for somebody else.
:lol:

Ok either the kid in Bangladesh gets nothing or he gets $20 a month.
You make the choice as to which is superior.

Education is meaningless really because people will seek the maximum education they need to meet their motivation level.
Just giving more education does not equate to ending poverty.

Which people are living in more poverty because of capitalism?
 

creativedreams

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
2,730
Reaction score
232
Location
Timbuktu
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
Nope, people are different. Some people don't get jealous, some do. some rob others, some don't. Some want to interact, some don't.
Perhaps true...but hard to tell for sure unless a few generations balanced out and all had an equal piece of society and an equal piece of the pie.......I say a few generations because that is what it would take to lose the mentalities to be jealous and want to rob, etc...
 

spud_meister

Veni, vidi, dormivi!
Dungeon Master
DP Veteran
Joined
Nov 6, 2009
Messages
36,113
Reaction score
21,519
Location
Didjabringabeeralong
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Communist
Depends on the situation, and on government involvement, and on lots of different economic and social factors, but the biggest factor I would put forward is if workers are able to unionise or not.
 

Harry Guerrilla

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
28,955
Reaction score
12,423
Location
Not affiliated with other libertarians.
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
Perhaps true...but hard to tell for sure unless a few generations balanced out and all had an equal piece of society and an equal piece of the pie.......I say a few generations because that is what it would take to lose the mentalities to be jealous and want to rob, etc...
Really, so people wouldn't get jealous of immaterial things like looks, love, intellect, etc.
Don't bet on it.

What you're proposing is utopian communism.
Someone will always want more of something and you can't control it all.
 

creativedreams

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
2,730
Reaction score
232
Location
Timbuktu
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
Really, so people wouldn't get jealous of immaterial things like looks, love, intellect, etc.
Don't bet on it.

What you're proposing is utopian communism.
Someone will always want more of something and you can't control it all.
You bring some good points....I was focused on monetary values....
 

Hatuey

Rule of Two
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 17, 2006
Messages
53,358
Reaction score
21,361
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
:lol:

Ok either the kid in Bangladesh gets nothing or he gets $20 a month.
You make the choice as to which is superior.
And yet that has nothing to do with what is being discussed. Please step out of your capitalist cheer leading clothes for ONE SECOND and realize what is being asked. Does free trade force a percentage of the population to live in poverty? Being paid $20 a month does not mean you get out of poverty. It means you get just enough to feed yourself. Nothing else. And that is by 'conservative' standards of what you'd need to feed yourself in impoverished countries. Which is about $1 a day but lets say he makes $30 instead of $20. Now what does working just so you can feed yourself mean to you? It means you are stuck in a cycle of trying to accumulate just enough wealth to survive. Thus my argument that capitalism does force some people to stay poor. Obviously if you only make enough money through the day to eat, you're not going to want to go to school or get a higher certification because you simply don't have the time. That is what is being argued here.

Education is meaningless really because people will seek the maximum education they need to meet their motivation level.
Just giving more education does not equate to ending poverty.
That is so ridiculous it's not even funny. The formula is very simple: higher level of education gives one more opportunities and thus more money.







Now, you're welcome to bring up every single exception you believe disproves this rule but would you say that on average a person with a bachelors degree is very likely to have less money than some high school drop out? I highly doubt that. I think the guy with a bachelors is going to have more money 9 times out of 10.

Which people are living in more poverty because of capitalism?
Most of Africa, the non-coastal areas of China, the majority of India etc. Seriously. Travel the world a little.
 
Last edited:

Harry Guerrilla

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
28,955
Reaction score
12,423
Location
Not affiliated with other libertarians.
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
And yet that has nothing to do with what is being discussed. Please step out of your capitalist cheer leading clothes for ONE SECOND and realize what is being said. Does free trade force a percentage of the population to live in poverty. Being paid $20 a month does not mean you get out of poverty. It means you get just enough to feed yourself. Nothing else. And that is by 'conservative' standards of what you'd need to feed yourself in impoverished countries. Which is about $1 a day but lets say he makes $30 instead of $20. Now what does working just so you can feed yourself mean to you? It means you are stuck in a cycle of trying to accumulate just enough wealth to survive. Thus my argument that capitalism does force some people to stay poor. Obviously if you only make enough money through the day to eat, you're not going to want to go to school or get a higher certification because you simply don't have the time. That is what is being argued here.
So if these capitalist jobs do not exist, what will these people do to feed themselves?
Be subsistence farmers?
They could do that now, but why aren't they?

That is so ridiculous it's not even funny. The formula is very simple: higher level of education > more opportunities > more money

Education does not necessarily increase your earning ability.
This recession has more white collar workers than blue collar workers.
Has their education hurt or helped them?

What has essentially happened in the U.S. is that we over educate, the high school diploma is almost absolutely worthless for those in blue collar jobs.
That level of education is only necessary for white collar workers, yet those people still need more education because of the glut of graduates.

Education does not matter, on it's own, without a capitalist economy.
The most educated person in the world with no way to feed himself, is still poor.

Most of Africa, the non-coastal areas of China, the majority of India etc. Seriously. Travel the world a little.
Why is it the fault of capitalism?
 

Hatuey

Rule of Two
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 17, 2006
Messages
53,358
Reaction score
21,361
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
It's tedious to argue with somebody who simply doesn't understand the very basics of an argument.

So if these capitalist jobs do not exist, what will these people do to feed themselves?
AGAIN: THAT IS NOT THE QUESTION BEING ASKED.

THE QUESTION BEING ASKED CONCERNS WHETHER CAPITALISM FORCES A PERCENTAGE OF PEOPLE TO LIVE POVERTY.

As I have already argued, it does. It doesn't matter what else they could be doing. What matters is the system already in place. As it is, capitalism does mean some people necessarily have to be poor so that others can enjoy cheap commodities.

Education does not necessarily increase your earning ability.
Really? Is that what every chart which shows the connection between education and earnings show? Interesting.

This recession has more white collar workers than blue collar workers.
Has their education hurt or helped them?
That is entirely different issue related to job safety. Not whether education and how much you make are related.

What has essentially happened in the U.S. is that we over educate, the high school diploma is almost absolutely worthless for those in blue collar jobs.
That level of education is only necessary for white collar workers, yet those people still need more education because of the glut of graduates.

Education does not matter, on it's own, without a capitalist economy.
The most educated person in the world with no way to feed himself, is still poor.
That has absolutely nothing to do with what we're discussing. We're discussing whether a person with an education is more likely to be paid more. The truth is that this is true. Regardless of how a blue collar or white collar fare in a recession, at the end of the day - once the recession is over - the white collar will still make more money.

Why is it the fault of capitalism?
I'm serious now, pay attention and put the how to be a Libertarian book down:

1. For a capitalist, it is necessary for goods to be produced cheaply in order to make a profit.

2. For capitalists in the real world, this means that they have to go to places where people are desperate for jobs and offer them the bare minimum they need to survive. Now, I don't know if you've ever been poor but it's been my experience that the majority of people living in poverty have an incredibly hard time getting out of it even in in present day America. So how does this relate to the issue being asked?

3. If a person is only making enough money to live on the daily, it means they do not accumulate wealth. Which means they don't pass wealth to their children. Which means the poverty cycle continues.

Finally, this is the reason union movements began in the first place. Capitalists of the late 19th and early 20th century had absolutely no problem making people work in squalid conditions and paying the bare minimum. If one complained? One was fired. That was it. What has happened is that now factories with horrible conditions, cheap labor and overworking bosses have been moved to the 3rd world. Only in places like Africa, complaining might mean getting your hand chopped off. That is why it's the fault of capitalism that some people must remain poor for others to enjoy commodities.
 

Harry Guerrilla

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Messages
28,955
Reaction score
12,423
Location
Not affiliated with other libertarians.
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian
It's tedious to argue with somebody who simply doesn't understand the very basics of an argument.

AGAIN: THAT IS NOT THE QUESTION BEING ASKED.

THE QUESTION BEING ASKED CONCERNS WHETHER CAPITALISM FORCES A PERCENTAGE OF PEOPLE TO LIVE POVERTY.

As I have already argued, it does. It doesn't matter what else they could be doing. What matters is the system already in place. As it is, capitalism does mean some people necessarily have to be poor so that others can enjoy cheap commodities.
You can't answer my question can you?
It certainly does matter, if that child is not working for $20 a month, what would the child be doing to provide for himself, in absence of the capitalist job?

Really? Is that what every chart which shows the connection between education and earnings show? Interesting.
What happens when everyone is the U.S. has a bachelors degree, masters degree or doctorate?
We will still need these highly educated people to, pick up garbage, scrub floors, wash windows, work as laborers in manufacturing.
Will their education be necessary to do these things?


That is entirely different issue related to job safety. Not whether education and how much you make are related.
To get that job they had to have an education, yet they have been laid off in greater numbers.
So their earning potential has been diminished.

That has absolutely nothing to do with what we're discussing. We're discussing whether a person with an education is more likely to be paid more. The truth is that this is true. Regardless of how a blue collar or white collar fare in a recession, at the end of the day - once the recession is over - the white collar will still make more money.
On average, yes.
You say more education has brought people out of poverty.
How much education though?

You blame capitalism for poverty, yet these jobs that require this education would not exist, without capitalism.
What is your solution?

I'm serious now, pay attention and put the how to be a Libertarian book down:

1. For a capitalist, it is necessary for goods to be produced cheaply in order to make a profit.
That's not true.
For someone to make a profit, the good must be produced and meet the cost/benefit ratio of the consumer.
"Cheaply" is subjective.

2. For capitalists in the real world, this means that they have to go to places where people are desperate for jobs and offer them the bare minimum they need to survive. Now, I don't know if you've ever been poor but it's been my experience that the majority of people living in poverty have an incredibly hard time getting out of it even in in present day America. So how does this relate to the issue being asked?
Since your 1st point is wrong, your second point isn't entirely true either.
You still haven't told me what these people would be doing, absent the capitalist job.


3. If a person is only making enough money to live on the daily, it means they do not accumulate wealth. Which means they don't pass wealth to their children. Which means the poverty cycle continues.
Not true either.
Some people have risen up from poverty because on new economic opportunity.
In fact whole nations have been brought up based on this concept and not because of prior wealth.

Finally, this is the reason union movements began in the first place. Capitalists of the late 19th and early 20th century had absolutely no problem making people work in squalid conditions and paying the bare minimum. If one complained? One was fired. That was it. What has happened is that now factories with horrible conditions, cheap labor and overworking bosses have been moved to the 3rd world. Only in places like Africa, complaining might mean getting your hand chopped off. That is why it's the fault of capitalism that some people must remain poor for others to enjoy commodities.
Yet during that same time life expectancy was increasing.
How were these people worse off than before?

You haven't proven this at all, you're just ignorantly ranting.
 

obvious Child

Equal Opportunity Hater
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
19,883
Reaction score
5,120
Location
0.0, -2.3 on the Political Compass
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Other
Hatuey, the Soviet Union educated its people relatively well. And most of them during 'communism' were by most measures super poor. Including their nuclear physicists.

I agree with Harry in that without a method of utilizing one's education, it really doesn't matter how educate you are.
 

Wiseone

DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 26, 2009
Messages
12,177
Reaction score
7,550
Location
Ft. Campbell, KY
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Independent
I think looking back on history that every system and government has had poverty within it, of course its relative as being in poverty in the US or Europe generally isn't like poverty in Africa or elsewhere. But poverty will always exist as someone has to be below the average income unless everyone is AT the average, in which case you'd be in a perfect communist society.
 

tacomancer

Big Scary Liberal
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Joined
Jan 8, 2010
Messages
39,847
Reaction score
20,683
Location
Akron
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
Without a doubt capitalism create poverty, but it creates less poverty than any other system that I am aware of.

However, the simple fact is that the market will always price certain jobs very cheaply, which will cause suffering. This is why we need government.
 

Winston Smith

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 24, 2010
Messages
915
Reaction score
204
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
Just curious of everyones opinions of the "Western Influence" and what your thoughts on a capitalism form of society are?

Please explain why you like it or dislike it and if you have any better ideas on how to govern a country please elaborate...
Capitalism rightly understood is not a zero-sum game. Its defining characteristic is that it provides economic opportunity for the masses.

Many Westerners today, especially conservatives, are under the misconception that the market economy, the profit motive, and private ownership of property constitute a capitalistic system. This is an incomplete understanding, born out of the Cold War, which emphasizes the differences between capitalism and communism. It says nothing of the differences between capitalist and pre-capitalist societies, which shared all of these characteristics. To the extent that it allows unfettered exploitation, this version of the market economy does doom a percentage of the population to poverty.

If we want long-term prosperity, the solution is neither to blame capitalism for our problems nor to defend existing forms of exploitation on the grounds that other forms are worse. Rather, it's to educate ourselves on the history and significance of capitalism and to work for a society that's both free and just.
 

Gabriel

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 14, 2010
Messages
1,019
Reaction score
118
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Other
Well for the west.. your working poor live in china. But further there is no way to escape implications of the bell curve for capitalism. Clearly capitalism forces have and have nots. Not everyone can be rich.

Yes capitalism enforces social stratification.
 

Winston Smith

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 24, 2010
Messages
915
Reaction score
204
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
Well for the west.. your working poor live in china. But further there is no way to escape implications of the bell curve for capitalism. Clearly capitalism forces have and have nots. Not everyone can be rich.

Yes capitalism enforces social stratification.
I think that depends on what you mean by "rich." Not everyone can be in the top ten percent, obviously, but there's no reason why everyone in a modern society can't be rich by historical standards. Exploiting workers who live in non-capitalist societies is another matter, of course. That's not what I'd call capitalism.
 

Gabriel

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 14, 2010
Messages
1,019
Reaction score
118
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Other
I think that depends on what you mean by "rich." Not everyone can be in the top ten percent, obviously, but there's no reason why everyone in a modern society can't be rich by historical standards. Exploiting workers who live in non-capitalist societies is another matter, of course. That's not what I'd call capitalism.
It sure is capitalism. It does not matter where the multinational corperations make their money.
 

reefedjib

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 12, 2009
Messages
6,763
Reaction score
1,619
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Private
Capitalism does not force people into poverty. It does not cause poverty. The absence of an economic system results in practically all people being in poverty. The various economic systems raise people out of poverty. So the question is how many people are in poverty and how can you minimize it?

Feudalism left most people in poverty and only nobles and merchants rose out of poverty.

Mercantilism did better.

Communism and socialism tries to spread wealth to all members of society, by dictating equality of outcome, and since there was little growth and innovation, practically all people are in poverty.

Capitalism raises all people. Our people in poverty have TVs, cars, food, apartments. They do this on minimum wage. Our poor are orders of magnitude richer than the poor in third world countries. The fact that there is a growing gap between rich and poor, means that the rich grow more than the poor, but the poor still grow. As noted above, systems which try for equality of outcome are detrimental to society as a whole. If you don't like being poor, get an education and get out of your condition by working hard.
 

spud_meister

Veni, vidi, dormivi!
Dungeon Master
DP Veteran
Joined
Nov 6, 2009
Messages
36,113
Reaction score
21,519
Location
Didjabringabeeralong
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Communist
Capitalism raises all people. Our people in poverty have TVs, cars, food, apartments. They do this on minimum wage. Our poor are orders of magnitude richer than the poor in third world countries. The fact that there is a growing gap between rich and poor, means that the rich grow more than the poor, but the poor still grow. As noted above, systems which try for equality of outcome are detrimental to society as a whole. If you don't like being poor, get an education and get out of your condition by working hard.
Which is why you need governemnt to temper capitalism.
 
Top Bottom