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"What about the poor"

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Raudsarw Posted: Thu, Jul 15 2010 3:56 AM

I'm currently in a debate with your average statist, he is trying to make me look like a heartless bastard and saying I can't feel any compassion towards the poor. He makes horrible emotional arguments, and I made the case that he is the heartless one here because he has no problem using violence as a means to an end. Anyway, any other good arguments that could be used in these situations?

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Giant_Joe replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 4:08 AM

If poor people need help, he can feel free to go out there and do it.

He's supporting the use of evil means to satisfy his ends. That is not the mark of a civilized society. There is nothing noble about stealing from people who have done no wrong. And if those people didn't need the money, wouldn't they be giving it away? Would he be willing to have his wealth taken away for 'some poor people'? If he's so morally bankrupt, why bother helping the poor at all?

If he's appealing to emotion, you'll have to speak to him on an emotional level. If I was in your situation, I wouldn't bother with arguing to have him change his mind. I would consider continuing that discussion for onlookers, though. They might find some of what you're saying interesting.

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MaikU replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 4:26 AM

I agree. If a person gets emotional, you must make emotional arguments too (from morality, gun in the room approach etc).

If a person claims something economical, you must use economical arguments too. Otherwise it's just beating a dead horse.

"Dude... Roderick Long is the most anarchisty anarchist that has ever anarchisted!" - Evilsceptic

(english is not my native language, sorry for grammar.)

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For me, I find emotional argumentaton pointless so when the personal attacks start flying I am just like "whatever". I find that debate should be an educational exchange between two people. Once it start looking like its being dragged down into the gutter, its not a good idea to continue. Once someone is that persistant in being right, it becomes a hassle to have an honest debate since they begin to engage in polylogism where they believe that they are morally superior and thus no matter what you say your will be wrong unless it molds into their image.

If you insist on debating these type of people, the best way is to flow your argument into theirs. Don't be too hasty to show them the light of your full ideal but sprinkle it in little by little until they begin to except your premises and then lead them to the conclusion as if they came up with it themselves. For example, your friend has a desire to help the poor. Why not just say, hey I have an idea, why not lower taxes to allow businesses to generate more capital (or you may need to expound a little depending on your friends knowledge of economics) so that way they may hire more people. Or say that you have found private organizations like (add local organization that helps the poor such as churches or charities) better at helping the poor. Also since they are so much closer to them and have a real desire to help them I wish my money could go to them instead of the sleazey politicians who only care about how to get votes.

I hope this helps in debating. I am not saying your going to be good at it immediately but with practice (not to mention a truck load of patience) you should get the hang of it. Remember just cause you are right doesn't mean your friend will except your ideal. You must conform your ideal to your friends and then lead him step by step to the truth, making his goal yours and vis a vis. That is in essence what an agreement is. Just like my sig says, be water my friend.

Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup.You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend. -Bruce Lee
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MaikU replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 6:28 AM

there is another, quite universal approach. Just agree with your oponent. Let him have his view and respect it and ask him the same attitude towards you. If he let you to hold different opinion (not paying taxes to a state, but voluntary paying certain amount of money to private charity or organization to protect you or support the poor whatever) and ask him, if he were so kind to respect your opinion and using different method to help the poor and to use private defence agency etc.

 

If he says no and insists on using violence against YOU (force you to do things HIS way, not your own way), then he is lost and already has a gun, so any debate with him would be meaningless.

 

That's not mine idea, actually, but anywway. I find it fascinating and very simple at the same time.

"Dude... Roderick Long is the most anarchisty anarchist that has ever anarchisted!" - Evilsceptic

(english is not my native language, sorry for grammar.)

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Raudsarw replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 6:32 AM

Already used the against me argument. He ignored it at first, now I asked again and he says I have a right to disagree. I think he fell for the trap

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Azure replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 7:15 AM

“Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all.” – Frédéric Bastiat

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MaikU replied on Thu, Jul 15 2010 7:24 AM

Raudsarw:

Already used the against me argument. He ignored it at first, now I asked again and he says I have a right to disagree. I think he fell for the trap

 

 

very good. Now ask him if he let you do thing YOUR way and not enforce his views on YOU with violence (forcing you to pay taxes, for example).

"Dude... Roderick Long is the most anarchisty anarchist that has ever anarchisted!" - Evilsceptic

(english is not my native language, sorry for grammar.)

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Fephisto replied on Fri, Jul 16 2010 5:07 PM

See my sig?  The line about the poor?  That might be a fruitful approach.  But you'll have to become a level 9 anarchocapitalist wizard to spout all the arguments.

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When making an emotional argument. calling the other person heartless is useless, but using anecdotal evidence from your own experiences are extremely key. If you have never been poor or never dealt with poor people on an individual level, you will lose the emotional argument in regards to the poor.

 

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This one works on some statist I have argued with: "I am all for individuals helping out other folks, the poor, the sick, etc. But what I am not for is forcing people to do so."

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Clayton replied on Fri, Jul 16 2010 7:06 PM

@OP: Re-affirm that you are a humanist, that is, that you have human happiness as a goal and, all things equal, you prefer that any person (even other people than yourself) is more satisfied with their circumstances than less satisfied. Because you are a humanist and because interventionism leads to misery instead of happiness (for all but a select few), you oppose interventionism and favor individual liberty.

Clayton -

http://voluntaryistreader.wordpress.com
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s burgess replied on Fri, Jul 16 2010 8:20 PM

well

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Michael replied on Fri, Jul 16 2010 11:27 PM

Fephisto:

See my sig?  The line about the poor?  That might be a fruitful approach.  But you'll have to become a level 9 anarchocapitalist wizard to spout all the arguments.

 

Level 9 anarcho capitalist wizard?... XD that's so dorky, Awesome lol

Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup.You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend. -Bruce Lee
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thelion replied on Fri, Jul 16 2010 11:45 PM

"What about the poor?" Work? Socialism does not require the poor to work, and your opponent knows this; for he himself subsists entirely on his socialistic principle and demonstrates the "truth" of socialism to himself everyday in his own privacy.

You will not convince him. He knows, from personal experiance, he need not believe in middle-class laws of physics, such as those of thermodynamics. Socialism does not require the poor to suffer. They only need to rely on the Circulus, either

 

in a roundabout manner (http://www.jstor.org/pss/4490898)

 

or, more likely, in a direct-to-mouth manner:

http://oll.libertyfund.org/?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Ftitle=1166&chapter=27618&layout=html&Itemid=27

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This post won't help unless someone knows what I'm talking about.

This lady wrote a book saying that it's impossible to live on minimum wage and blah blah blah. She promoted socialism, etc. Afterwards, this 20-something (I think) kid wrote a book about his adventure into poverty in order to refute her comments. He decided to leave everything behind him and take a flight out to a random city. When he got there, he had like $10 and nothing else. He talked about the first night how he slept outside, then found a homeless shelter and soup kitchen the next morning. Then he got a few odd jobs without a resume or anything while living at the homeless shelter. Then he eventually found a small studio and a used car. He was living perfectly on his own in a matter of months with extra money to spare. If anyone knows what book this is called, it would at least help to bring it up.

With or without the title, you can still bring up the story of that kid and the book, which will show how easy it is to be successful. He'll be using "poor" as a metaphor basically, but that kid's story gives you concrete evidence against how 'hard' it is to be successful in this country.

"Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats." - H.L. Mencken.

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nameless replied on Sat, Jul 17 2010 12:35 AM
Brian:

This post won't help unless someone knows what I'm talking about.

This lady wrote a book saying that it's impossible to live on minimum wage and blah blah blah. She promoted socialism, etc. Afterwards, this 20-something (I think) kid wrote a book about his adventure into poverty in order to refute her comments. He decided to leave everything behind him and take a flight out to a random city. When he got there, he had like $10 and nothing else. He talked about the first night how he slept outside, then found a homeless shelter and soup kitchen the next morning. Then he got a few odd jobs without a resume or anything while living at the homeless shelter. Then he eventually found a small studio and a used car. He was living perfectly on his own in a matter of months with extra money to spare. If anyone knows what book this is called, it would at least help to bring it up.

With or without the title, you can still bring up the story of that kid and the book, which will show how easy it is to be successful. He'll be using "poor" as a metaphor basically, but that kid's story gives you concrete evidence against how 'hard' it is to be successful in this country.

I recall reading about this.  The former book is Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich and the latter is Scratch Beginnings by Adam Shepard.  Ehrenreich is really just another one of those democratic socialists who say nothing of real substance.

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I recall reading about this.

Awesome! Thank for you remembering the titles.

"Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats." - H.L. Mencken.

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Germanicus replied on Sat, Jul 17 2010 12:45 AM

What about the poor?

What about them?

Get him to clarify. Your average cultural leftist makes many, many naked assertions ('diversity is strength', 'white privelege' etc) and all too often people don't call them to task on these matters because, as Rothbard pointed out, the Right abandoned the ethical/moral side of the argument long ago and concentrated on the perceived 'impracticality' of such matters instead, which allowed the left to drag the paradigm ever further to the left. Which is why you end up with a situation where leftists are allowed to make so many unsubstantiated claims over and over again.

When a cultural leftist makes a naked assertion, such as loaded emotional questions about 'the poor' or about myths like police racial profiling, you must get him to provide evidence for these assertions otherwise they are merely naked assertions with nothing behind them.

"If diversity were a strength people would practice it spontaneously. It wouldn't require constant cheer-leading or expensive lawsuits."

- Jared Taylor
 

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Another good rag to riches is book is "Up from Slavery" by Booker T. Washington. Not only did a guy who just got out of slavery make it up in the world to start a school, but it really does show that rich people are very willing to help the poor despite the hatred against them. It also shows why child labor really isn't evil, that racism is really overcome through hard work and talent not screaming, and that even when someone is poor and living under a bridge they can acheive greatness.

( this is one of my favorite books)

Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup.You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend. -Bruce Lee
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MB replied on Sat, Jul 17 2010 2:43 PM

I haven't read the two books (N&D and Scratch Beginning), but I seem to recall some reviews by others.

You actually have to sort of read between the lines to figure out why the lady in N&D failed.  She tries to say that society is to blame, but it seemed clear that because she was unwilling to do the stuff that the kid in SB did that she failed.  Sort of like being unwilling to settle for less, which made it hard to get ahead on minimum wage.  Sort of like wanted to eat at Ruby Tuesday, when they really could only afford McDees, but refusing to do so.  Whereas the kid was willing to do without until he could truly afford it, etc.

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It's a mistake to concede that people are "poor".  It just reinforces relativistic measurement.

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Jackson replied on Sun, Jul 18 2010 6:26 PM

"But you'll have to become a level 9 anarchocapitalist wizard to spout all the arguments."

a lvl 9/17 AnCap/Austrian is the intellectual equivilent of a Kensai/Mage.

when a statist says 'you don't care about poor people', you just shrug, mutter 'haters gonna hate', and strut out of the room b/c if you aren't bracing the remnant, you're wasting time.

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