Instigator / Pro

fauxlaw lost the argument in his debate MONEY CAN BRING HAPPINESS


The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.

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After 1 vote and with 5 points ahead, the winner is...

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Two days
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Two weeks
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Contender / Con

since your debate had no votes in time, and your opponent is inactive, I'm willing to have another debate about it if you're willing.

I am arguing that you LOST the argument against your opponent. (dropped too many points, didn't have enough of a convincing case, etc.)

the debate:

Round 1
I believe that fauxlaw LOST his debate because he continuously argued that money is only a way to get something that makes you happy. However, due to the human conditioning, we implicitly link one thing to another, jumping across obvious ideas. Pro argues "People have a passion for products. Money, which can be used as a product, could bring happiness to people." Even if indirectly, the money has brought happiness to the people. Consider a case where you are actually being conditioned, with money shown to you every single time something good happens. Eventually you would link money to happiness, as illogical as that is. My opponent cannot argue that the conditioning brought happiness, it is merely a process that helps money bring happiness. 

Con tries to break down "financial independence" by saying it wasn't scholastic source, and argues through semantics to try to gain a win, but I feel like both "able" and "allowed" still breach the idea that "if con cannot disprove EVERY scenario, no matter what, that Money does not lead to happiness". He even discredits his own argument by alluding to a MUSIC VIDEO, of all things (which proves absolutely nothing, as music videos can show people being very happy with money in contrast).

Con's argument especially falls apart when you take away money from the equation, if you examine all of pro's evidence, it's clear that without money each scenario couldn't have made the person happy (ex. no money to buy products, therefore he wasn't able to be happy from this method, meaning that the money brought the happiness).

Case closed. Con has lost his debate against his opponent in his debate.

I Rebuttal: Pavlov’s dog
I.a 130 years ago, Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov presented the conditioning experiment of measuring salivation in dogs when presented with food.[1]  I thought of his famous experiment by a bit of Pavlov’s conditioning operating in my head as I prepped my Word page for this argument. In the corner of one monitor [I have three], a television commercial featuring dog food presented the distasteful product of powdered meat [probably freeze-dried], with the look of surprise in the face of a black Great Dane. Hilarious. 
I.b To the point: since Pro’s r1 brought up conditioning as alleged proof that money can buy happiness, and then challenged, as a conclusion, that his case is closed in three, short paragraphs, presuming I have no rebuttal to the conditioning argument. Uh… excuse me. No case is closed until the end of the last round, boys and girls. This is the first round. And, it just happens that I do have a rebuttal, so, let’s keep our dogs barking for a bit, yeah?
I.b.1 As an aside, Pro argued that I lost the previous debate on this subject because, “[I] continuously argued that money is only a way to get something that makes you happy.”  However, since we are, by Voting Policy, disallowed from making “…any reasoning based on arguments made or information given outside of the debate rounds is unacceptable. This includes reasoning that stems from already-placed votes, comment sections, and separate forums.”[2]  Therefore, I will merely say that my argument went far beyond this simplistic representation, but I will say no more by reference to that debate other than that I lost the debate. That is a consequence entirely out of my control, but it should not affect this debate. And, I caution readers intending to vote to avoid accessing it in the process of your deliberations. After voting, feel free to do so.
I.c Does conditioning prove money brings happiness as Pro appears to allege? I’ll address Pro’s r1 argument as presented: “Consider you are being conditioned, with money shown to you every single time something good happens.”
I.c.1 Fine. We are shown money; but it is not given to us, according to Pro’s description. In Pavlov’s actual experiment, the conditioning included not only showing  food to the dogs, but bringing  the bowl of food to them to consume. Yes, the dogs eventually began salivating when just hearing the lab assistant’s footsteps bringing  the food to the dog, but that is only because they were, in the early stages of experimentation, actually given the food to consume, which made them “happy.” In Pro’s hypothetical experiment, no money is ever actually brought  to us [see the meanings of “bring” noted below]; it is merely shown.  By Pro’s method the conditioning is showing, not bringing.  The outcome is that no transfer of ownership of the money occurs. Therefore, as Pro alleges himself, My opponent cannot argue that the conditioning brought happiness.”  In fact, it did not, because the outcome is not money in our possession; not money brought  [one of the keywords of the resolution] to us to consume. We did not have it before, and not even now to use it to buy[one of the key outcomes of the resolution] anything, let alone happiness.
I.d I conclude my r1 rebuttal, cautioning Pro to avoid the arrogance of declaring the case closed. I have three rounds, and will use them, regardless of Pro’s arguments. Meanwhile, if he wished to pass on the following two rounds, as it appears he’s ready to do, who am I that I should resist? A fair opponent; that’s who.
II Definitions:
II.c Pro wasted a round by avoiding definitions in his description and r1, so, I will present definitions, by the resolution, all according to the OED:
II.c.1 Money:  n.  Coins and banknotes collectively as a medium of exchange, or any written, printed, or electronic record of ownership of the values represented by coins and notes…
II.c.2 Can:  v.   The ability and/or allowance to do/be something
II.c.3 Bring:  v.  To cause to come along with, to fetch, to lead [as in French, amener], or to carry [as in French, apporter].
II.c.4 Happiness:n.  The quality or condition of being happy
III Argument: Money cannot bring happiness 
III.a By the definition of money as presented above, money [coins and banknotes, or its representative record] is a commodity. It is a value in commerce [trade], but it brings/carries absolutely no intrinsic value other than the cost of its material content. Even that, I wager, is not worth the effort to convert because having a twenty-dollar bill of current issue [I do not include “silver certificates,” or the like], should we wish to trade it for the value of its material content, we would be given another $20 bill in trade from a fool [and we have gained no additional money in the trade], and a few cents in trade from a wise thinker [and we have lost money in the trade]. Is either result “happiness” as it has been defined? No.
III.b However, is the mere possession of money sufficient to bring happiness? Therein turns the debate, for Pro contends the sufficiency is there. He has closed the book on that point. I say the sufficiency for happiness is still lacking. Why?  
III.b.1 Recall the definition of happiness: The quality or condition of being happy.  What is ‘happy?’ The OED says: “n.  of an event or period: marked by good fortune; fortunate, lucky, auspicious, prosperous, favorable, propitious.” Happy is a joyful feeling by these terms. Very desirable. And, most appropriately, it is not a process, but a destination; the arrival of an “event,” or a “period’s” conclusion. It is a lasting emotion, not a brief thrill. .  “It’s not so much the level of income that directly determines your level of happiness, but rather the ways in which you are able to direct your income to purposes that are likely to bring you happiness and satisfaction.”[3]  
III.b.2 If money brought happiness directly [you don’t see “directly” in the resolution, do you?], we should be able to place a price on its value. I want to buy happiness. Now. Directly. No vehicles, no gadget toys, no wine, women, and song, and not even an investment. I want the product, happiness. Okay, how much? And from whence? Who is the retailer of that commodity? And from whence did the retailer buy it wholesale? Who is the manufacturer? Of what materials is it made? Are you really going to tell me these questions have answers that will achieve the purpose of the objective; the resolution; to bring me happiness, such that I am able and allowed to buy and possess it? And sell it if my happiness does not last? 
IV. Conclusion: I have a bridge…

Round 2
my opponent has conceded his argument. He admits "I will merely say that my argument went far beyond this simplistic representation, but I will say no more by reference to that debate other than that I lost the debate." Debateart restricts from comment section, voting section, etc. references, but does not disallow from referring to other debate's arguments, which is exactly what this debate is about.

My opponent admits that the dogs received reward/happiness when brought the food. though I forgot to include this step previously, he hasn't been able to argue against the idea that if I additionally kept bringing money with each ring of the bell, eventually "money would bring happiness". 

I will also contend against my opponent's extremely vague definition of happiness. Science has already determined a consistent feeling for happiness (,Serotonin.), the addicting "reward" that makes us go for more-- dopamine. [ in case my opponent wants a scholarly article proving this, here:] 3,000 ML of Dopamine cost $140 dollars which can be injected into your stream ( Depending on your body, it could last for a varied amount of time. But there you have it. Money directly buying happiness chemical. I don't know how much simpler it can get than that.

CONCLUSION: Con has been defeated, he admits in the title's proposition -- that "fauxlaw lost the argument MONEY CAN BRING HAPPINESS". I do not know why he is continuing making further arguments but I am fine with knocking them down simply.
I Rebuttal: The paradox of Pink Floyd Money
I.a Con argued in r1 that I discredit my own argument by presenting a Pink Floyd music video, saying that videos can “show people being very happy with money.”  He is correct. Music videos can show people just about anything the producer want’s to sell. My argument, however, is not discredited because if one is attentive to Pink Floyd, the message is clear: this is a parody of money bringing happiness for the simple reason, if it is not clear that almost everyone in the video is not smiling [a first hint at one being happy], the given third verse is clear: “Money, so they say, is the root of all evil today. But if you ask for a rise, it’s no surprise they’re giving none away.”[1] It is the same scenario as Pro’s r1 experimental conditioning: they are willing to show you the money, but, “…it’s no surprise they’re giving none away.”  No, no bringing happiness here. Oh, well. The conclusion? Simple, after dreams of seeing and hearing money in surround sound, the morning hangover reveals the truth: “I don’t know, I was really drunk at the time…”[2]  On how many hangover mornings are you happy?
I.b Most people who don’t have money don’t think people who do need a Lear jet. “Airplane money,” it’s called.  Here’s a great, true story: “A young engineer got two job offers. One offered him $15K monthly plus other benefits. Another company offered him $50K monthly with the same benefits. He chose the $15K offer. Then the $50K company called him to ask why he turned down their offer. The engineer thought the $50K offer was a fraud.”[3]  Did this engineer think more money would bring more happiness? Nope, he thought it was a fraud. Well, it was. They showed him the money, but that’s it. They were not giving it away, either. Another hangover morning?
II. Rebuttal: Dopamine, et al – happiness, or just pleasure?
II.a Pro’s r2 offers us the alleged evidence that we can be conditioned to feel happy merely by the infusion of a variety of hormones into our systems. His source article in, describes hormones, all naturally produced in our bodies in sufficient doses when we are healthy. The article presents 12 suggestions to create happiness, and 11 of them have naught to do with money, directly. Get outside, physical exercise, laugh with a friend, cook with a loved one, listen to, or make music, meditate, plan a romantic evening, pet your dog, have a good night’s sleep, manage stress, and get a massage. The twelfth? Supplements. Yes, this one will cost money. 
II.a.1 Con admits relatively significant money is needed take some supplements.[4] But the previous 11 activities can be achieved without spending a dime, generally involve the participation of others, and are actual activities beyond popping pills, which some consider a violation of a natural lifestyle.[5] Consider the usual argument regarding supplements: they are super-concentrated with whatever ingredient the latest quack has discovered will restore your prime of life: 100 pounds [I’m kidding, but it is quite a lot] of the essence of gogi berries, all reduced to a single capsule. Wow! But, is your body really geared to absorb the essence of 100 pounds of gogi berries? Daily? 
II.a.2 Don’t you think that if 100 lbs. of gogi berry supplement super-concentrated powder is good for you [?], wouldn’t a handful of the natural berries also be nutritious? Look at it this way: dosage of prescription medicine takes into account your body, and other medications you’re taking, not 97 of 100 peoples’ bodies, and their prescribed medications.   “The RDA  [recommended daily allowance]is like the government trying to create a sweater that would fit 97 out of every 100 Americans. If you try to do that, you'd end up with a very large sweater that 97 out of 100 people could fit into. But that does not mean it’s the correct size for everyone. There's 96 out of 100 people who could fit into a smaller sweater.”[6]  This is an indictment of supplements I challenge Pro to successfully rebut. Not to re-mention the other activities in Pro’s source, that have sideline benefits, as well. When did a bottle of supplements ever send you a Happy Birthday greeting card, or a Christmas present? How about a simple compliment that you appear a few pounds lighter this week?
II.a.3 Are hormone supplements giving happiness, or just pleasure? The two have very different trace activities in the brain, and we can easily confuse the two.[7], [9]  “The language difference between ‘happiness’ and ‘pleasure’ is subtle, but the chemical difference is huge… scientists who study hormones say our brains can tell the difference between a quick rush of pleasure and the long-lasting contentment that is the true definition of happiness. And it's a big one.”[8]  Dr. Robert Lustig, an endocrinologist, wrote, "If you've been told your entire life that pleasure is happiness, then, you know, you're screwed."[9] 
III Argument: Is there a nexus of pleasure and happiness?
III.a So, if a bottle of supplements brings clinical pleasure, but not really terminal happiness, one of the very few sweet diseases, what will bring happiness? Is there a nexus of buying pleasure and bringing happiness, as in the failed effort to buy happiness when it is really available free of charge? Pleasure is chemically addictive, brief, visceral [felt in the body], inspires greed, is typically a one-on-none experience, impulses to the brain to want more as in addictive], and can be abused.[10] Happiness, on the other hand, is non-addictive, long term, ethereal [felt above the neck], inspires giving, typically is shared, impulses the brain with sufficient satisfaction, and cannot abuse or be abused.[11]
III.a.1  The latter list has naught to do with currency of any kind except the currency of delightful, joyful happiness, not just pleasure. There is no nexus between pleasure and happiness. Not physical, not spiritual, not intellectual.
I, a happy man, naturally, not supplementally, pass the next round to Pro. As for the gogi berry poppers; thanks, but no thanks. I'll just pick my own... fresh and juicy.

Round 3
my opponent has derailed this debate with needless continuous arguments. He has not refuted his own concession that he has LOST his debate MONEY CAN BRING HAPPINESS. My opponent tried to say that this debate doesn't relate to it, but the proposition very clearly note that this debate is whether about he had a better or worse argument than his opponent. I linked his debate in the description. I made my own inferences and references to help emphasize his opponent's points. He has not managed to overcome the idea that his opponent managed to link money and happiness directly together. The opponent thoroughly discredited Pink Floyd's "Money", which only offers an idea, not a solid argument. He tries differentiating between pleasure and happiness, but the difference is only in timing-- "Pleasure is a momentary feeling that comes from something external -- a good meal, our stocks going up, making love and so on. Pleasure has to do with the positive experiences of our senses, and with good things happening. Pleasurable experiences can give us momentary feelings of happiness" ( As such, pleasure is still a little bit of happiness. In the original debate, he had not stressed the idea that this happiness had to be permanent and unchanging. He would lose in this aspect as well.

Vote for pro.
I Rebuttal: Debating needless, but dangerous things
I.a Pro has wasted the last round arguing needless things by the accusation I have done so. Let’s quote the resolution of this debate, verbatim: “fauxlaw lost the argument in his debate MONEY CAN BRING HAPPINESS.”[1] That resolution does not set up an argument of two opposing sides; it is a statement of fact of a past occurrence. It is fait accomplis. We cannot change the past; that is an absurdity. I will not combat it. And, I submit to voters, it is not a reason for Pro to declare victory in this debate.
I.b Pro argued in r3, My opponent tried to say that this debate doesn't relate to it, but the proposition very clearly note that this debate is whether about he had a better or worse argument than his opponent.” I do not see a reference in the resolution that I had “a better or worse argument”  at all. I challenge voters to find it there. I’ve cited it; it can be reviewed; it’s within this debate. Otherwise, I refer you to the discussion above. 
I.c However, there is a critical matter that I argued in my r1, I.b.1, regarding the prohibition of voters to consider “…any reasoning based on arguments made or information given outside of the debate rounds  [this debate, that is] is unacceptable. This includes reasoning that stems from already-placed votes, comment sections, and separate forums.”[2] Pro says in the Description that I “…dropped too many points, didn’t have enough of a convincing case, etc.” Pro’s insistence on our re-hashing of that debate consequence draws voters to base their RFD on that debate. They cannot do that. Sorry, but this is an argument that must be dropped, and I dropped it, appropriately, in r1. But, Pro cannot leave it alone. Danger! Caveat emptor.
II Rebuttal: Pro: The art of juggling: pleasure is happiness
II.a Pro began his argument in r1 by alleging that money brings happiness, and that I argue the indirect bringing of happiness by use of money is not a legitimate rebuttal. In fact, I argue, the “indirect bringing” violates the concept of “bring;” or rather, that “bringing” is not what is accomplished at all. We are talking about causal relationships, such as demonstrating the linkage of my possession of your wallet is evidence that I stole it, with your money in it.  That appears to be solid, provable evidence, until I bring video evidence that your slight of hand put the wallet in my pocket. The video even captures the fact that your wallet contained the bills now surreptitiously planted on my person by you, because the video is a continuous record that I was apprehended by the police on your insistence before my awareness that your wallet was now in my possession.
II.a.1 By such means Pro argues “we implicitly link one thing to another, jumping across obvious ideas.”  This sounds a bit like the skill of keeping many objects in the air at once by the apparent unique skill of humans, and not other animals observed to date, by the combined “remarkable use of the hands but also complex spatial perception and cognitive skills;”  i.e., juggling[3]
II.a.2 Pro’s first r1 argument proposed, "People have a passion for products. Money, which can be used as a product, could bring happiness to people. Even if indirectly, the money has brought happiness to the people.”  Pro then used a variation on Pavlov’s conditioning of dogs as an example, but Pro shattered Pavlov’s method in the process, as I demonstrated in my r1, rebuttal I. I’ll mention, again, the distinction between bringing food to the dogs as a conditioning, Pavlov’s method, and Pro’s modified method of showing the money, but not giving it to us. How are we thus conditioned to think money brings happiness if we’re never given it? Sorry, that argument fails.  That’s a juggled ball, dropped.
III. Rebuttal: Pink Floyd? Again? 
III.a Pro argues in r2 that Pink Floyd’s “Money,”is an idea, not an argument. “Money, so they say, is the root of all evil today. But if you ask for a rise, it’s no surprise they’re giving none away.”[4]  I’ll rebut, based on this quote from the song, that an argument is an idea. There’s logical equivalence. Evil, typically, is presented as something desirable to acquire, but by illicit means, such as robbing a bank to possess money, rather than earning it. This is a statement of fact. The argument is the irony that something that can be obtained, even illicitly, without expense, cannot necessarily be obtained if one asks for it from an employer by receiving a raise in pay that may not be, after all, earned. If that’s not an argument, Pro had better define what it is. I’ve already offered the definitions of the resolution words, and, curiously, though Pro’s assumed the argument is about argument, he never defined it. So be it. Another ball dropped. 
IV Rebuttal: Let’s say pleasure is happiness, because we’re on a clock
IV.a Pro offered us a citation from, an article by Dr. Margaret Paul, a psychologist, whose own bio[5] tells us, first, that she is a writer. In fact, her psychology credentials are only listed third. Pro’s introduction to citing Dr. Paul says, “[Con] tries differentiating between pleasure and happiness, but the difference is only in timing…”  Timing? Like a clock? Is the time, as the British may say, “half-pleasure, or quarter happiness?” 
IV.a.1 Meanwhile, my r2, II rebuttal, preceding mention of Dr. Paul, included references to two sources, an article in, and a commentary by Dr. Robert Lustig, a medical doctor and endocrinologist. The subject was whether or not pleasure and happiness were, in fact, synonymous, as Pro says above, being merely factors of timing, but, apparently, otherwise, identical. To quote Pro’s own source, Dr. Paul, There is a huge difference between happiness and pleasure.”[6]  To make matters worse for Pro, the title of the article is “The Difference Between Happiness and Pleasure.”[7] Coupled with my referenced sources from r2, as noted above, and repeating Dr. Lustig, "If you've been told your entire life that pleasure is happiness, then, you know, you're screwed,"[8] it appears that Dr. Paul, Dr. Lustig, and yours truly are on one side of the differentiation question, and Pro is on the other side. Happiness and Pleasure are as different as night and day. That’s another ball dropped.
V Conclusion: Money cannot bring happiness, and pleasure is brief.
V.a Juggling is an art form that is not easily debated. Either one can do it, or one cannot. Likewise, either one lets sleeping dogs lie, or they tempt them with shown food, but never feed them. Or, one either appreciates listening to Pink Floyd, or, they are tone deaf. Or, either one attempts to juggle seven pleasures, or is happiness personified because the pleasure was abandoned for a happy life with wife and children who juggle [statistics indicate women are better jugglers than men].[9]
V.b There just are opposites in life, and either we put money in its proper place as just another commodity, and we derive our happiness from understanding the true test of money’s value, i.e., "The real measure of your wealth is how much you would be worth if you lost all your wealth."[10]  Or we attempt a short cut to happiness by thinking money is its source.
V.c Therefore, money cannot buy happiness, because, much as we may wish that it could be purchased, as pleasure always and only is, and brief in its effect, happiness is not for sale. I rest my case. Vote for Con.