Instigator
Points: 6

Socialism

Voting

The participant who scores the most points is declared the winner

The voting period will end in:
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Debate details
Publication date
Last update
Category
Politics
Time for argument
Three days
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
Two weeks
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Rated
Characters per argument
10,000
Required rating
10
Points: 7
Description
Norway's wealth is held collectively in sovereign wealth funds and Norway has more State Industry than China or Venezuela
Round 1
Published:
It is my contention that Norway is actually a real example of successful democratic socialism , there is a lot of state owned Industry, one in three workers work for the state , and much of the wealth the bulk of it in fact is held in a sovereign wealth fund accumulated from oil profits 
Published:
Error in Debate Formatting, Cleared Up

The debate being had is the following:

Pro advocates that Norway is a genuinely Socialist nation, that it has a system closest to Democratic Socialism out of all variants.

Con will be advocating that Norway is, in fact, closest to Social Democracy and that the differences between what Norway is and Socialism are significant enough to conclude that at most it is 'compassionate capitalism'.

==

Debunking Baseless Assertions by Pro

Pro puts forth a series of baseless assertions.

To clear things up, I will bullet point what exactly Pro asserted and go into why each one is incorrect, logically fallacious and/or irrelevant to the resolution.

  1. Pro states their entire case's conclusion (that Norway is a real world example of Democratic Socialism) as their sole contention. Your entire case cannot be based on the contention that the case itself is true. This is flawed debating structure and terminology.
  2. Pro says that there is 'a lot' of state-owned industry. Not only does this not clear up whether or not Socialism is supposed to be anarchic and government shouldn't be taking from the people but even if we assume that state-owned industry is quintessentially Socialist, the lack of 'a lot' having actual quantity is enough to disregard it on its own. On top of that, if 'a lot of state-owned industry' is outweighed by 'even more private industry' then it means very little. Also, 'state-owned industry' is not entirely clear. There is state-owned industry in the sense of an entirely owned means of production that the government literally runs, while alternatively it can subsidise and impose contracts upon otherwise private industries, to make them accessible to the poor and having to meet stringent standards of safety and environmental-friendliness. Nothing at all is covered in this point by Pro, nor is it explained what Socialism is or why this makes Norway Socialist.
  3. The idea that one in three Norweigans works for the state is so utterly ridiculous considering that children who are too young to work, the elderly and the disabled are completely glossed over to begin with. Even if that mattered, where on Earth is this statistic from? Even in official reports on Norweigan employment rates, demographics etc. I struggle to find this statistic anywhere at all. https://tradingeconomics.com/norway/employed-persons 

    What that would prove, at most, is that there is a very large public sector and government, by extension. That would be present in any/all beaureacratic political systems, not just Socialism. Pro has to even slightly define and link this to Socialism-qualifying-criteria to then say this leads us to conclude that Norway is Socialist.
  4. The oil profits wealth fund is some kind of utter conspiracy theory. I do not know where Pro got that from, nor how that makes a country Socialist if it's true. The authority in Norway that decides how liscencing of oil production and such go, is the King/Queen. The unelected, non-democratically established power of Royalty has entire authority in Oil Industry Liscencing since 1963:
In May 1963, the Norwegian Government proclaimed sovereignty over the Norwegian continental shelf. A new act was adopted establishing that any natural resources on the shelf belong to the Norwegian state, and that only the King (in practice the Government) has the authority to award licences for exploration and production.
- Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate. (2019). Norway’s Petroleum's History. [online] Available at: https://www.norskpetroleum.no/en/framework/norways-petroleum-history/ [Accessed 11 Sep. 2019].

https://citethisforme.com helps with my citation formatting ]

So, is it a Monarchic Democratic Socialist regime, all at once? I don't even think that's possible but if that's what Pro says it is, Pro really has to prove it.

==

Agreeing with Pro, finding middle ground and turning the tables in my favour.

Norway is left-wing leaning Centrism, I am going to just go ahead and agree to it being left-wing-sided. There's fairness on the poor, a realistic dream for the Progressives of today as they can say 'look at Scandinavia and see many practical applications of caring for the poor without a country's economy falling apart and such. This is because Norway is a fantastic practiser of Social Democracy. The mixed economy of Social Democracy is more centrist than Democratic Socialism.

To begin with, there's many rigid elements to Socialism, whether Democratic or not, that are absent in Norway (which practises a fluid form of mixing Capitalism's fundamentals with Socialist ideals, the end result is known as Social Democracy). To begin with, there is no minimum wage in Norway, yet the poor do not suffer. It's also one of the best places in the world to start a business, yet the rich do not prey on the poor of any line of work there. How is this achieved? Not by Socialism, but by Social Democracy.

There are about 2.8 million total employed workers in Norway. Just 10 percent of the employed workforce work in these state-owned enterprises. The public sector in general employs about 30 percent of the workforce, the highest proportion in the capitalist world. While this is surely a lot in comparison to other capitalist democracies, the Norwegian state still leaves the significant majority of workers working in capitalist firms for their survival. This is even more so the case in the other social democracies.

Democratic socialism, on the other hand, should involve public ownership over the vast majority of the productive assets of society, the elimination of the fact that workers are forced into the labor market to work for those who privately own those productive assets, and stronger democratic institutions not just within the state but within workplaces and communities as well. Our characterization of democratic socialism represents a profound deepening of democracy in the economy.
- McCarthy, M. (2018). Democratic Socialism Isn’t Social Democracy. [online] Jacobin Magazine. Available at: https://jacobinmag.com/2018/08/democratic-socialism-social-democracy-nordic-countries [Accessed 11 Sep. 2019].

Feel free to click the 'blue text' in what was pasted for very reliable links that the author of the Magazine Article references. Do not discount this for being a Magazine, it had reliable research put into it.

The Scandinavians embrace a brand of free-market capitalism that exists in conjunction with a large welfare state, known as the “Nordic Model,” which includes many policies that democratic socialists would likely abhor.

For example, democratic socialists are generally opponents of global capitalism and free trade, but the Scandinavian countries have fully embraced these things. The Economist magazine describes the Scandinavian countries as “stout free-traders who resist the temptation to intervene even to protect iconic companies.” Perhaps this is why Denmark, Norway, and Sweden rank among the most globalized countries in the entire world. These countries all also rank in the top 10 easiest countries to do business in.
- Iacono, C. (2016). The Myth of Scandinavian Socialism. [online] Foundation for Economic Education. Available at: https://fee.org/articles/the-myth-of-scandinavian-socialism/ [Accessed 11 Sep. 2019].

==

What exactly is Socialism?

a set of political and economic theories based on the belief that everyone has an equal right to a share of a country’s wealth and that the government should own and control the main industries

At a first glance, it does seem that many websites even that go more into what Socialism is, could end up planting Norway on the Socialist part of the spectrum but I stand firm in the notion that they're incorrect. Norway's government does control 60% of its GDP but it only 'owns' 10% of the overall industry. This is extremely important to understand because in the world we live in today (2019) we are so Capitalist, on the spectrum as a world, that we don't realise that a nation like Norway is overall Left-Leaning but still nearer to the Centre than the 'true left wing'. You can own your own money there, run your own private business and decide your own wages, working conditions etc for your people but yes it is controlled with left-wing ethos in mind, by the government. The crucial part of understanding why it's not Socialism, lies in the concept that it essentially is a compassionate form of Capitalism. It cares for its poor, understands the imbalance that Capitalism (which is embraces) can create and then uses Socialist-esque ideals to guide its policy-making and enforcement. The State refuses to become truly Socialist and justifies this by the fairness to the poor and vulnerable that exists in spite of it being Capitalist, economically.

Industries in Norway compete for profit, get to keep that profit with a corporate tax rate that's significantly lowering in recent years (as it's solved how to make Capitalism fair by other means). It's lucrative to do business in, fantastic to work in whether you're poor or rich and that secret is down to balance; Social Democracy.
Round 2
Published:
Around 1 in 3 workers in Denmark and Norway are employed by the government. a large state sector is indicative of a Socialist society 
as the means of production is not in private hands

Protections against termination by employers are much stronger in the Nordic countries... the state takes a very strong role in protecting workers

Centrally-bargained union contracts establish the work rules and pay scales for the vast majority of Nordic workers. workers have some say in their own affairs and in the affairs of production , co determination

State Ownership
Even more interesting than Nordic labor market institutions is Nordic state ownership. Collective ownership over capital is the hallmark of that old-school socialism that is supposed to have been entirely discredited. And yet, such public ownership figures prominently in present-day Norway and Finland and has had a role in the other two Nordic countries as well, especially in Sweden where the government embarked upon a now-defunct plan to socialize the whole of Swedish industry into wage-earner funds just a few decades ago.
The governments of Norway and Finland own financial assets equal to 330 percent and 130 percent of each country’s respective GDP. In the US, the same figure is just 26 percent.

State-owned enterprises (SOEs), defined as commercial enterprises in which the state has a controlling stake or large minority stake, are also far more prevalent in the Nordic countries. In 2012, the value of Norwegian SOEs was equal to 87.9 percent of the country’s GDP. For Finland, that figure was 52.3 percent. In the US, it was not even 1 percent.


Finland and Norway have their special reasons for the level of state ownership they engage in. Finnish government publications discuss the country’s late development and status as a peripheral country when justifying their relatively heavy public involvement in industry. That is, Finland does not want to expose the entirety of its marginal, late-developing, open economy to the potential ravages of international capital flows.

No one would argue that the Nordic countries are full-blown socialist countries, whatever that might mean. But it is also folly to pretend the only thing they have proven is that high taxes and large welfare states can work. Even on the narrow understanding of socialism as public ownership of enterprise, the Nordic countries are far more socialistic than most commentators seem to realize. American socialists who draw inspiration from their successes do so rightly.

Published:
Debunking Revisited

Alright, essentially every single point has been dropped except for the '1 in 3'. I think I now know that, thanks to using correct terminology, Pro was referring to the 30% statistic in this source's quote from my own R1:

The public sector in general employs about 30 percent of the workforce, the highest proportion in the capitalist world.
- McCarthy, M. (2018). Democratic Socialism Isn’t Social Democracy. [online] Jacobin Magazine. Available at: https://jacobinmag.com/2018/08/democratic-socialism-social-democracy-nordic-countries [Accessed 11 Sep. 2019].

I would like to refer you to the ending of that sentence:

in the capitalist world.
and let's call that a little more than a draw... It's a flat-out victory by Con.

Norway is one of the Capitalist nations on Earth that happens to lean very much to the ideals of Socialism. It is not a Socialist nation that happens to lean very much to Capitalism, which Pro clearly agrees to, considering that Pro's only point seems to be that Norway has 30% of its workforce in the public sector and that their government owned assets and industry is apparently very rich compared with its GDP. This is another baseless assertion and frankly there is no need to address it whatsoever. A government owning high-priced assets and controlling 10% of the industry (same source, quoted in R1) is not proof of Socialism, it is proof of beaureacracy and actually that is not really democratic, considering that it's not trusting its people with the wealth and/or property but that again is a contradiction of Communism and Socialism being lumped in with 'democratic' and why in practise it's always been a tyrannical employment.

==

Denmark and Sweden have nothing to do with this debate at all.

While I could easily show you that Denmark has leaders explicitly saying it's Capitalist and that Sweden was only mentioned to show that it failed to employ Socialism which it did away with as soon as it could, the real issue is that this debate is about Norway and no other country whatsoever. To look to Denmark and Sweden to 'win this debate' is analogous to looking to someone's relative or neighbour, pointing out something in their attributes and then saying that we should default that to be an attribute we associate with the original subject being discussed. No such default leap in logic should be done, it is actually so obvious of a logical fallacy, that I don't think I need to explain more or go into its official 'fallacy name'.

==

  • Note: Pro identifies as male in his profile for now, so I use 'he'.
Pro didn't even use the sources that he linked to in the previous Round he essentially plagiarised it (but admitted to it).

The entire contents of Pro's previous Round (which weren't in quotation marks or formatting of any kind) WERE COPY AND PASTED FROM THE SOURCE AT THE END. 

Literally start to end, the entire case is copy+pasted.

This means that Pro never replied to me, Pro didn't even use the source inside the text because all it links to is a 'plan' of Sweden that failed and has absolutely nothing to do with the debate, which is about Norway alone.

You will notice that in Pro's lack of foresight, what he pasted agrees with Con's case in its entirety.

No one would argue that the Nordic countries are full-blown socialist countries, whatever that might mean...

the Nordic countries are far more socialistic than most commentators seem to realize.
- Bruenig, M. (2017). Nordic Socialism Is Realer Than You Think. [online] MattBruenig | Politics. Available at: http://mattbruenig.com/2017/07/28/nordic-socialism-is-realer-than-you-think/ [Accessed 11 Sep. 2019].
- Pro R2 plagiarising (but sourcing who he did so from, anyway)


"far more socialistic" and "realer than you think" as well as "full-blown" are all admissions that Norway is, out of the countries that are not Socialist, among those that lean most towards it. In other words, where does one draw the line between an extremely heated chunk of ice in a container and an extremely cooled container of liquid water? I think it comes down to the adjective being what it's not quite and the noun being what it is. 

Norway is a very Left-Wing and "socialistic" Capitalist nation, that has found a middleground of Social Democracy. This is completely conceded by Pro thus far.
Round 3
Forfeited
Published:
Summary Thus Far, Pro's Defeat Outlined

The only thing that was Pro's own work in this debate (in terms of debating) was Round 1.

I have thoroughly debunked each and every part of what was raised, even going so far as to entertain his semi-plagiarism in R2 and rendering the copy+pasted text irrelevant to the debate in terms of Pro's side of things.

In response to this, Pro has forfeited a Round. Consider that Pro was active in other debates during this time and in three full days felt no need to respond to what I wrote. This is poor conduct and perhaps is a concession, since the forfeit is most certainly not due to inactivity as around 6 debates were posted by Pro during the three days which he spent posting nothing here.

==

Socialistic Capitalist Nation vs. Capitalistic Socialist Nation

Perhaps the 'killer point' that was raised by me was that what Norway is, is an overall Capitalist nation practising a compassionate form of it known as Social Democracy. The important thing to understand here is that what I have done is agreed with Pro entirely on the ideals of Norway being Socialist-esque and that the nation doesn't hate Socialism as a concept (though some within Scandinavia most certainly do, Norway included). In agreeing to this, I established that what is true is that Norway is probably one of the most centrist 'towards Socialism' nations out of all those that are not actually SocialistIn response to me elaborating on this precise notion, Pro seems to be left with no choice but to forfeit, for the only thing to disagree with me on is something that Pro knows he's already admitted to.

Do not assume that Pro has any ways left to win, nor entertain the thought that Pro is entitled to redefine 'Socialism' in any shape or form at this point. Pro has lost the debate and it would be courteous of Pro to explicitly admit defeat and not waste anyone's time by forfeiting future Rounds. There is no penalty for admitting defeat, learn and improve. :)
Round 4
Forfeited
Published:
My opponent has given up the debate.
Added:
--> @billbatard
Please, in Round 1, make crystal clear if we are debating pro vs con on socialism or on whether Norway is socialist or not.
I am willing to take Con on both, that is why I accepted preemptively.
Contender
#1
#1
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
50% forfeit.