Instigator / Pro
Points: 0

Germany is more powerful than France, as of now.


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Contender / Con
Points: 2
As I said power, freedoms will not count. Germany is a stronger, more powerful nation than France, in my opinion.
Round 1
Just to make myself clear, I love France, I just think Germany is more powerful.

Germany is much stronger economically than France. Germany is 1.2 trillion dollars richer by nominal GDP. This is effectively a whole Australia separating the two economically, with Australia's GDP standing at 1.3 trillion. You may say Germany's economy is only bigger because of it's population. even per capita Germany is 7 thousand dollars richer per person. But it isn't just GDP Germany exports more, produces nearly 3 times more oil, and holds the second largest gold reserves ranking just below America.

The best talking point against Germany is it's military. But, according the German military isn't too far behind France. Germany sits at 10th while France ranks 5th. I'm aware my source doesn't account for nukes, but given the fact that Germany is far stronger economically, producing nukes and other military goods wouldn't be a challenge. Also, war is becoming less and less viable every day. There's a reason none of the top 44 economies have wared with each other since WW2. As a result, I firmly believe a larger economy should be weighted more than a larger military seeing as it is more relevant as of now. Decline in wars source.

Thx Trent0405 
2700 CPA= pls forgive shortcuts & abbrs.


power is the (social) ability to coerce, influence, or control” or (physical) effectiveness”

RESOLUTION: Germany (DE) is more powerful than France (FR), as of now

PRO must prove that DE has more power internationally than FR.  If voters agree that FR has more power or is equal in power to DE, CON wins.

PRO has only one contention: DE makes more $$$.  Therefore, Con asks: is $$$ all there is to power?  FB Meyers is worth 16 Donald Trumps.  Is she therefore more powerful?  Obviously, there is more to power than $$$.

HARD POWER: PRO concedes FR outranks DE militarily. FR is 5th after India, DE is 10th after Turkey.

  1. 26% bigger military budget
  2. 14% more active duty soldiers
  3. 24% more tanks
  4. 37% bigger AF
  5. 70% bigger Navy, incl only non-US  nuclear-powered aircraft carrier

Let’s recall that DE has twice in living memory broken all treaties and invaded FR, causing the two worst human disasters in eurohistory.  Allied powers incl FR defeated BRD both times.  

Therefore DE:
  1. Has only restored sovereignty since 1990
  2. Military capacity is delimited by FR & Allied powers
  3. DE is forbidden nukes & WMD (note: PRO argued that DE nukes “wouldn’t be a challenge” but that’s false- FR forces DE to never build nukes)

FR has the 3rd most nukes  in the world (300) : DE is not permitted even one nuke.

That is, if FR maintains the real capacity to destroy, say, all of Australia or Japan tomorrow.  DE has no such capacity. While such a scenario is hardly IRL, that capacity represents a major advantage in real power, hard and soft.

SOFT POWER: CON concedes that DE $$$ is one soft power advantage but argues that PRO has not considered many important FR advantages. The FR economy prioritizes diversity and self-sufficiency. FR is the only euronation that is food self-sufficient: an essential advantage in trade wars & real wars.

  1. Named #1 on "Soft Power 30" 2017
  2. Most multilateral & diplomatic & cultural membership of any country
  3. is the official language of 29 countries globally.  German is not spoken much outside of EU.
  4. is the #1 tourist destination in the world
  5. surpasses DE in UNESCO heritage sites, museums, restaurants, attractions
  6. surpasses DE in music,  art, film, sport
Consider: FR events of Int'l interest: Tour de France, Cannes Film, French Open, World Cup, Fashion Week. DE has nothing like these.

PRO's resolution says "as of now" but consider younger govt. has the lead in Iran nuke & BREXIT negs.  When Notre Dame burned Apr 15, the whole world stopped to watch.  DE has no comparable cultural institutions, influence.   

Round 2
I do concede France is much stronger militarily, but such a war would result in the destruction of both nations economies. Germany would eventually erect its own nukes, even if it violates the treaty of Versailles. Nations break treaties and laws all the time. An advantage militarily isn't as potent as an advantage in economic strength.

A military advantage is especially trivial when your competitor can out produce you and has a larger population pool.

Also, Germany's military is far less reliant on reservists, meaning the German military is better trained. Also, Germany's active duty soldiers numbers are deceiving, as Germany has a more efficient military with a larger portion of there military under joint services, thus misrepresenting their numbers.

We have seen what happens when a nation is better trained militarily. Israel was outnumbered 3 to 1 in the 6 day war, but they were able to seize Sinai, Palestine and more because of their seasoned combatants.

Your statement surrounding Germany's defeat in WW2 isn't relevant  to the premise, both nations have shifted greatly ideologically and economically. If you believe it is relevant to the premise please tell me in your response.

You stated how France is self sufficient and how it grants it the ability to perform better in a trade war for example. But, Germany is so close to being food sufficient, this very small difference wouldn't make much if any difference in a trade war.

And Germany could most likely gain more leverage than France when it come to a trade war given how much more Germany exports. nearly all of the EU, including France it self is reliant on Germany for goods as seen here.

I will concede France has some immense cultural influence, but we see all over the world how wealth super cedes it. For example, African nations like Mali, Somalia, and Chad almost always side with China in the UN. These nations weren't pro or anti China in the past, but since China has pumped billions of dollars into these countries, they're now implored to vote for China in the UN.  Therefore, weighting cultural and monetary influence equally wouldn't be accurate to the state of our as of now world in my opinion. 

Look at both countries economically now. Germany currently sits at an all time high wealth wise, but Frances peak was 11 years ago.

France is the#1 tourist destination- This is true, but that is only one variable that jogs economic growth, overall Germany has been growing more economically as I've already stated.

Just want to say thank you for taking me up on this debate, kids at school just don't argue the same as intellects like you.

RESOLUTION: Germany (DE) is more powerful than France (FR), as of now

In R1, PRO argued that DE was richer, CON argued that FR has superior HARD POWER- planes, carriers, nukes, and also superior SOFT POWER- diplomatic and cultural influence.  Yes, $$$ is power but a more diverse and sustainable economy like FR is richer long-term than flash industrial outputs with hidden costs of pollution and social disruption.

in R2, PRO concedes FR HARD POWER advantage. 

PRO argues:

  1. DE-FR WAR would destroy both economies (irrelevant to relative power)
  2. DE would build nukes (NATO+RUS at least would be treaty bound to stop such development)
  3. DE would break Treaty of Versailles (DE 1936 Rhineland invasion ended Treaty of Versailles)
  4. DE army better trained (what evidence supports this claim?)
  5. PRO argues WW2 is no longer relevant (the consequences of that war are central to questions of hard power:  the numbers of soldiers, tanks, planes, nukes, etc is dictated to DE by a coalition that includes FR.  FR actually tells DE how much military DE can have- that is the definition of power.)

PRO also concedes FR SOFT POWER advantage.

PRO argues:

  1. DE is close to food self-sufficiency at 80%.  (The difference between 111% of daily nutritional req & 80% adds up pretty quickly.  Also superior FR diplomacy, Navy, geography mean far better export/import prospects during any anti-trade event. )
  2. DE's superior exports equals more leverage in conflict (that depends on the export.  In a crisis, which sells better: food or BMWs?)
  3. DE $$$ better than culture (culture is $$$.  Every time an Intl' conglomerate meets in Paris because the kids want to go to EuroDisney or the Husband wants to tour wine country- FR improves in $$$ and influence at DE's expense
  4. China gains UN influence by bribing African leaders (Since PRO mentions UN we should note that FR has a permanent seat on UN Security Council (and hence, a veto in security proceedings.  DE has no veto at the UN.  FR > DE again)
  5. DE is growing faster. (PRO's resolution states "as of now")
IF voters agree that there is more to evaluating a country's power ranking than just money, voters should vote CON.
IF voters agree that the fact that FR limits DE military power definitionally advantages France, voters should vote CON.
IF voters agree that 300 nuclear warheads vs 0 nuclear warheads is an important power differential, voters should vote CON.
IF voters agree that FR culture, history, and diplomacy translate to a real global advantage in influence, voters should vote CON.

Thx to voters for their kind consideration.
Thx to PRO for instigating this debate. 
I particularly enjoyed the short format.

--> @Trent0405, @Ragnar, @Ramshutu
Thanks for voting. And thanks again to Trent. I really like that super short format and the straightforward, international politics topic. I look forward to more debates with you in future.
--> @Udit
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>Points Awarded: pro win
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Reason for Mod Action> Reason for Mod Action: This vote is not eligible to vote. In order to vote, an account must: (1) Read the site’s COC AND have completed 2 non-troll/non-FF debate OR have 100 forum posts.
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thx, Trent!
--> @oromagi
--> @Alec
I agree, but a nations economy should be weighted more than military in my opinion. None of the top 44 economies have fought since WW2.
Economically, Germany is stronger. Military, France is stronger.
I prefer Germany as the nuances of it as a social democracy are superior to what France is as a social democracy. In fact I would say France is like a Republic that basically takes Democracy as a necessary means to an end (yes, like America but of course more left wing) while Germany, especially due to escaping its past, is a genuine social democracy.
" Germany exports more, produces nearly 3 times more oil, and holds the second largest gold reserves ranking just below America."
Actually, Germany relies more on oil from Russia than France, making them less powerful and relying on a foreign power.
dang, Oromagi got it, I know a lot about foreign militaries
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Winner 1 point
This debate was framed around two specific types of power.
Pro is arguing that in terms of economic power, Germany is more powerful. Con argues that both diplomatically, militarily, and culturallyFrance is more powerful.
On most points, both sides agree on most of the others points.
Cons rebuttal starts of conceding that France is stronger militarily, and then goes on to show that it isn’t stronger militarily. Con argues Germany could build nukes (the resolution is “as of now”), that the war would be devestating to both sides, and the military is not as good due to being full of reservists.
Con argues that the power of trade and food self sufficiency. And that money supersedes cultural power - using China as an example.
Pro points out con conceded the soft power issue, and largely takes down the military aspects, pointing out that there is no evidence that Frances army is not as well trained, and that Germany is treaty bound not to build nukes and limited in its military. On food self sufficiency con points out of that there is a large advantage for France; and on trade con goes on to argue that leverage with BMWs is harder than leverage with food.
While short, in this debate pro establishes that Germany has a stronger economy. Con on the other hand I feel establishes that France as a stronger military, stronger cultural influence, stronger soft diplomatic power.
Given that these things are all what is typically associated with power, and I feel that economic power is only really established as such if it translates to soft power: this debate must go to con.
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Winner 1 point
Interpreting the resolution:
On average of power dimensions to be listed, X>Y
Both agree money isn’t the only type of power, and Y was shown to excel at more dimensions of power (even if a greater number in any doesn’t prove they would utilize it better).
1. Money: Pro
“1.2 trillion dollars richer by nominal GDP” or “7 thousand dollars richer per person”
Con counters with an example of rich people having power not determined proportionally to their money (oddly the Israel example from pro furthers this).
2. Might: Con
More or less conceded anyway, but the “as of now” qualifier undermines pro’s own arguments that X could overtake Y if they wanted to.
That they would be ruined by a conflict does not change this, rather it seems to question the weight of economic power in comparison to what could easily destroy that.
Some credit to pro for the Israel reference (size isn’t everything).
3. Soft-Power: Con
I momentarily considered dismissing this as per the description of the debate, but that would equally apply to non-military might such as money. Culture is as much a power as money if leveraged.
See above review of key points. With a tad more data I could run a math program, but there would still be the subjective elements of either assuming they are all equal or trying to assign weighted averages... With none proven to be superior or to override the others, it is unlikely to create a different result than just lumping them all into the three dimensions and counting them.
Sourcing could have been done better, but both sides seemed to put the effort in (if there’s an issue I don’t mind reviewing the sources, I am just a little sleepy right now, and they look like they’ll fall somewhere near the mean).