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Resolved: On balance, Human "Free Will" Likely Exists

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Participant that receives the most points from the voters is declared a winner.

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Philosophy
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full resolution: It is more likely that free will does exist for humans, rather than it does not exist.

Free will: Free will is the ability to choose between different possible courses of action unimpeded. The doctrine that the conduct of human beings expresses personal choice and is not simply determined by physical or divine forces.

No kritiks allowed, burden of proof is shared.

Round 1
Pro
Thanks to Theweakeredge for accepting this debate. For me to win, I will have to highlight the ways that people's thoughts and psychological state can lead to various different ideas and control, to demonstrate free will. 

nulla. Free Will, precisely defined

Though I have used the trusted Dictionary.com to define free will, I believe this specification is not detailed enough for my specific stance on this debate. I do not have to prove that all forms of free will definitively exist. I only have to prove it more likely than lack of free will existing. As I investigated various forms of free will, I stumbled upon an interesting investigation on whether drugs, specifically smoking, may fail to impede free will, proving the existence of it. The expert carefully notes, "free will is the capacity to act in different ways in the same situation. It thus overlaps considerably with voluntariness. Shepherd (2012) showed that most people do not accept unconscious free will, so free will entails conscious control of action. The term “free will” is a traditional usage but modern theorists generally do not postulate “will” as a distinct psychological entity, so it would be more precise to speak of free action" [3] . 

In other words, it's definitive that I have to drop any type of "subconscious" free will, but this does not stop the possibility of conscious decisions made upon various reasons and ideas. Through reasoning, Baumeister (above) reasons that the reason smoking is so addicting is because it is a motivator, not an actuator. While people cannot avoid their various biological functions, within smoking itself, despite being a very powerful motivator, it can still be stopped by people. If they have serious motivation to quit, they are able to stop the seemingly violation of free will. This is why the government is willing to spend money on encouraging various forms of ads in order to help people quit smoking. They realize that the people are not predetermined to continue smoking forever; with enough counter-acting, you will successfully quit smoking. Other actions follow suit as such. With a full view of the situation, and encouragement in one side or another, one can demonstrate their own free will to choose one decision or another. Even with this binary notion of "smoke or not smoke", the two choices are very clear, and nobody is forced out of their will to smoke. 

I. Possibility of Different Outcomes

Opponents of free will often demonstrate basic scientific research to prove it does not exist: genes, birthplace, and environment are all outside of one's control. Therefore, free will does not exist. But this free will only exist in terms of physical manifestation. It is well known that even the most skilled physicians cannot predict the exact behavior of people. [1] Our misunderstanding of their emotional state relates to their free will. This study has displayed that determination is not easily predicted if even existing in this world. Indeed, certain behaviors cannot be controlled, such as brain death, pupils dilating from light, and other physical ideas.

Restriction of physical movements alone cannot dictate the idea of defeating free will. The fact is that on a psychological level, any possibility is equally likely and impossible to predict. We have gathered a vague scientific understanding of the mind. Yet, we cannot know precisely what actions will be taken by the moral agent. Consider that the vast majority of well-respected research only claims that each part of your background is only part of what makes you, you. As an extension, this is why racism, sexism, etc. are looked down upon. Merely because one is tended to raise in a poor background, or that they are likely to perform poorly in education, or commit a crime, does not mean they are set upon the stone path. Otherwise, one might be justified in jumping to conclusions merely due to a person's traits outside their control. 

II. Options, Options

As previously noted, the science behind the lack of free will mostly tend to look upon what physical traits lead to your response. For example, the brain signals tell you what to do. And the personality strongly impacts what your life decisions are going to be like. None of the scientific analysis denies the property of the actions themselves, nor the idea of the person able to accomplish their action on their own. Because the intentions are key to understanding and proving free will. You cannot reduce the person down to merely the set traits alone. For example, in in-game theory, the idea of choosing the answer depends on the mental state and perception of the person. Even adding additional options or removing options, may change the ideas which are held, and the free will idea is proven as a result. This will connect to the next point, because the lack of information available allows the seeming paradox of making the same decisions regardless of ability to make a different decision.

III. Randomness VS Justification
One of the double-edged controversies over the neuroscience and quantum physics connected relates to how entropy is random and we cannot have true say over our actions. The very nature of the double-slit experiment seems to disprove free will on the smallest level, as mere observation or lack thereof can seemingly change the will of the atom. But of course, the light photons and the human brain are two entirely different ideas. An individual's rationality defeats the seeming randomness of choices. The consistency of the action is only grounded within the current mindset of the person. In other words, the cause was not necessarily from the exact preceding circumstances. The choice was seemingly your only choice, only because it is who you are. It does not negate the possibility of the other choice. No contradiction is formed by saying it is rational for you to choose one choice 100% of the time while acknowledging that there is another choice available to you. The seeming predestination does not fail the existence of your free will to choose the other choice, merely because it seems irrational based on your previous experiments. 

The relation between the determinism, indeterminism, and the free will, are seemingly at odds, but another expert cleverly notes the solution to the problem:
  • "  an agent who makes a particular choice has the ability to do otherwise, insofar as several actions are possible for him or her, none of which is predetermined, and yet
  • the agent intentionally endorses the chosen action and thereby stands in the required special relationship to it." [4] 
Now I won't bother copying its entire argument, including the complicated ideas about branching paths that almost seem like time travel, but in a nutshell. You can have branching paths that lead towards a single point, and vice versa. For example: Universe A goes to the store, then comes back home. Universe B stays at home. Regardless of the decision, you ended up back home. But the chosen actions were not set in stone (and therefore not the consequences, even if in all Universes you ended up back home), and were not predetermined. In both A and B, they have their justifications which allow them to justify go to the store or staying at home. Because only some of the actions can be supported by the person, the results seem to give illusion of lack of free will, while all the possibilities are still there. 

My argument is not 100% originally my idea, and I will cite the source of the original idea to avoid plagiarism (though I did completely reword the argument so that common voters would understand), which includes another drawing of model to clarify the idea of the randomness vs endorsement chance relation to physical and metaphysical worlds.  [2]

Conclusion: In a very convoluted way, I think the expert is talking about something similar to cognitive dissonance. You are free to do actions which you do not believe in, changing your mind as you wish. You are much more likely to do things which your mind endorses. Regardless, the possibility is there, and the physical experiments which claim everything is outside your control, are only like motivators similar to smoking's effect on your brain. Otherwise, nobody would ever be able to quit smoking, and strong enough motivators could have 100% resultant effect on the choices that we make. It is true that we have unconscious biological functions, but these differ from the actual conscious actions that we take. Despite the randomness of the universe, there is a certain order that goes along with it. The two can coexist and do not contradict. I am not certain whether weakeredge believes in Determinism or Indeterminism, regardless, I have covered both case. If everything is physically pre-determined, the possibility of choice and rational backing remains. If everything is indetermined, then he will have to back up why this is psychologically and philosophically true, as there is a result that is apparent in the universe.
 
Con
Resolved: On balance, Human “Free Will” likely exists 



Opening Statement:

Thanks, Undefeatable for making the debate, due to the fact that I only have 10,000 characters let’s keep this concise. Going over; BoP, Structure, and Key terms. Let’s start.

BoP: Pro is arguing in favor of the proposition: “On balance, Human “Free Will” likely exists” And therefore indicate indicative evidence in favor of this assertion, while also rebutting Con’s points. Con must do the opposite of this. 

Structure: I will prioritize my constructive over rebuttals, therefore if I am to run out of room to argue, Con’s constructive will be addressed in R2. 

Key Terms:
Free-Will - Pro's term
Human Free-Will - “The power of acting without the constraint of necessity or fate; the ability to act at one's own discretion relating to humankind.”




Free Will Does Not Exist

My case against the existence of free will be split into two: 

  • Neurobiology
  • Determinism  


Neurobiology

Even in Pro’s own point do they doubt their ability to surpass this argument: 

  • “In other words, it's definitive that I have to drop any type of "subconscious" free will”

Though they go on to elaborate, do note that even my opponent, arguing in the precise opposite position as I, support this argument and would concede had they, not other options.

Let’s dig into the science anyways, however.

The very point I would like to point out is that, with numerous studies, proving the fact that seconds before we are to choose something with our will (using our “Free Will”) the brain has already made up its mind, that you do not choose your actions, instead your brain does. 




As Demonstrated there is a wealth of scientific data to suggest that we do not decide to make decisions, regardless, instead of that our brain has a pattern formed already with specific information that your brain has gathered over your life. This is undisputed by Con and should stand to alleviate my BoP.



Determinism

To quote Lexico.com, an Oxford English/Spanish dictionary and thesaurus, determinism is:

  • “The doctrine that all events, including human action, are ultimately determined by causes regarded as external to the will”

Essentially the position I am taking is that human action, your action, is not caused by your will. I do need to demonstrate that however, allow me to take a short philosophic detour to further explain what I mean. 

Fundamentally there are only two reasons why anyone does anything. Ever, it is impossible for your actions to have been caused by anything else. These reasons? 

  1. You want to do something 
  2. You are forced to do something

This does not seem true at first glance, not at all, that this supports the argument that free will does not exist. In fact, it may seem irrelevant. However, what is relevant, is that you do not choose what you want. Simple as that, you do not choose your wants. 
Take a choice to set your alarm to snooze whenever it interrupts your sleep in the morning, to getting up and starting your day. 

  1. Do you choose to want more sleep? Certainly not, you simply do.
  2. Do you choose to want to sleep in? Certainly not, you simply do. 

Let me use another example to further illustrate this:

  • What about such activities as going to the gym? Most people do not want to go to the gym but choose to - to get healthier, to lose weight, whatever it may be.

I would then ask you to reevaluate that position, that going to the gym is not because you want to, but it might have the appearance that one still chooses to go to the gym, regardless if they wanted it or not.

My objection? Simple, you have another want. The want being, getting healthier, then, what separates those who go to the gym to those that stay at home? Their wants, one go to the gym because they want to go get healthier supersedes their want to relax, while one does not go to the gym because they want to relax supersedes their want to become healthier.

  1. Do you choose to want to get healthier? Certainly not, you simply do.
  2. Do you choose to want to get relaxation? Certainly not, you simply do.

This might be a way to simply look at my point:

P1: The two reasons you do anything for are: You are either forced or want to do it
P2: You are not choosing something you are forced to do
P3: You are not choosing what you want
Con: Therefore there is nothing you choose to do

To extrapolate: There is no way to act differently given the same situation, as the reasons for doing anything could not change given the same situation, it is, the same situation. 



Refutations:

I will sequentially rebut each idea that Pro has presented:

  1. Free Will precisely defined
  2. Possibility of Different outcomes
  3. Options, Options
  4. Randomness vs Justification 


1. Free will pre. def.

My opponent claims that they do not have to prove all forms of free will exists, this would have me assume that they would make some kind of distinction between libertarian free will and compatibilism; however, they shoot themselves in the foot and just try to demonstrate libertarian free will anyways. They go on to claim that they only have to prove that a lack of free will is not the case, which is false, they even purported a definition and by accepting the resolution in pro’s favor, has essentially made the assertion that “On balance, Human “Free Will” likely exists.” Therefore by nature of the BoP necessarily have to demonstrate that proposition.

They then make a confusing argument essentially down to this: People can choose to stop smoking, therefore free will. Is this at all a valid or sound argument? Of course, I won’t be deciding that based on that simplified and likely ship of Theseus-ed argument, but the same basic tenants of the argument hold true. Con’s primary justification for this argument is reasoning. First of all, as I have already demonstrated in part 2 of my constructive, whether they actually pick up the cigarette or not is not up to the person, the brain has already made up its mind. Second of all, philosophically speaking, all it means is that you want to stop smoking more than you are forced to want to smoke (due to the addictive effects of nicotine and all). 

Perhaps reasoning was a part of it, but why did that reasoning convince you? What about people who aren’t convinced logically? What is the difference between the two situations? It's exactly as I said earlier, one is compelled by logic while the other is not. Why? Because one is and isn’t you don’t choose what you are compelled by.



2. Poss. of other out.

Pro’s central argument here is that we can not always predict the outcomes of others, therefore this scientific argument is not valid. With some thrown in factors of self and such. This also doesn’t prove nor disprove the existence of free will. All that means is that some decisions are using other parts of the brain that are harder to measure, but let’s also not forget that most physicians do not have a machine that is set to measure the parts we can read. Essentially most doctors don’t even have the equipment necessary to measure a person’s actions, or at least not something they can casually use to predict behavior, only whenever is medically necessary.

Which my opponent has not demonstrated that physicians have any of what I’ve described, nor do they actually have a reason. Therefore this entire argument is based on assumptions. Not to mention, it does not defeat my first argument of free will either, it does not even touch on it.



3. Opt. Opt. II

The entire argument is hinged on making a distinction between the mind and the brain. That intention and psychological states are entirely different. That one’s action is somehow separate from one’s brain. While all of these are intuitive arguments, none of them have actual evidence to support any of these claims. While there is actually counter-evidence that suggests that human consciousness is actually all physical. Consider this study/article.



4. Rand. vs Justi.

Again, Pro’s argument is based on proven premises, in theory, this could be true, but the actual claim is scientifically unfalsifiable. Whenever a scientific claim is unfalsifiable scientists throw it out, however, we can make a philosophic argument against this claim.  Why is it the fact that reasoning is a choice? As I explained earlier, you are either compelled by reasoning or you are not, why is there a possibility of another choice? Do you choose whether or not you are compelled by reason? You may choose to act upon that reasoning but you do not choose to actually be convinced by it.
 


Conclusion: 

I have demonstrated my BoP while rebuking my opponents, therefore it is my opponent's burden to prove their point and rebuke mine.

Back to Pro!
Round 2
Pro
Con's argument is confusing because none of the demonstrations has been a correct refutation of the expert's argument. My paper from R1 explains that "critics of my argument will have to explain why we should either deny ontological naturalism, or accept a reductive form of physicalism, or significantly revise our understanding of agency". Con has done none of these.

Neuroscience: Unproven to be able to reduce the form of physical up to the metaphysical level. Not applicable in this debate. I already noted that you cannot control your pupils dilating to light. You cannot control your natural unconscious reflex. Indeed, when you are sleeping you cannot control your body at all. Lack of unconscious control does not definitively lead to a lack of conscious decision. Merely because you can unconsciously and spontaneously make decisions (perhaps hardcoded from genes, such as flight or fight), this does not negate your ability to freely make decisions.

Even if pro was correct, there is counter-neuroscience evidence that proves otherwise. Despite lack of awareness during, our reaction time and ability to conclude, can be calculated to set things off. One study finds that "the intentions to take voluntary actions are strongly influenced by events occurring after the execution of the action" [2] The study is way, way too long to put here. But the essence comes from that there are numerous ideals that lead to the ability to suppress decisions that are not valuable enough. The scholar also proposes a method to measure "free will":  "we can identify various parameters of the normal profile of being in control, which would include specific connectivity patterns between amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, and insula, between anterior cingulate gyrus and prefrontal cortex, and so forth.... Yet other parameters contrast the immature with adult pattern of synaptic density and axon myelinization. At the current stage of neuroscience, we can identify the normal range for these parameters." In short, con has massively simplified neuroscience and failed to think about other ways free will can be determined.

Determinism: 
Here con goes onto a false dichotomy where he presumes there are already only two options available:
  1. You want to do something 
  2. You are forced to do something
However, these once again only look at the physical result of the problem, and not the theoretical metaphysical property. As my same expert realizes, Determinism fails to rule out the possibility of doing otherwise. He establishes that "Even if the agent was always going to do one thing rather than another, it can still be true that in the nearest counterfactual world in which he or she tried to do otherwise, he or she would have succeeded".

But the way Con phrases the things is the global necessity that cannot be avoided (ex. evolutionary evolved traits). This is a trap. We cannot compare the global dispositions to the local dispositions that inherently lay out the idea of free will. Whittle has stated, “[t]he dispositional analyses of abilities … latch on to [a] global sense of ability. But such global abilities to do otherwise do not capture the kind of freedom that is necessary for moral responsibility.” [1] In other words, even if a person was not able to do something, that does not mean he does not have the choice to do it! For example, you have the choice to play tennis or not, nothing is forcing you, but if you do not have a racket, you are simply unable to play tennis, even if you choose to play tennis. Of course, you could always pretend to play tennis, but determinists would probably argue "that's not real tennis, see? He had no choice to play real tennis, as he has no racket." This is of course, nonsensical, as he is still choosing to play tennis, regardless of his actual ability to play tennis. Here we see the difference between physical abilities and the mental decision of capacity.

Similar to the idea of smoking vs not smoking, people have already decided not to smoke, but without professional help (and strong motivator), it is exceedingly difficult to *actually* quit smoking. This does not negate their free will to choose not to smoke. You are starting to see the difference, are you not? The physical result may be the same, while my choice is different. Let me give a more obvious example. I'm choosing to type up this article. I am choosing not to make any spelling mistakes, in my mind. But something goes out of control and I mistakenly add an "e" randomly. Of course, I did not choose to add an "E" by accident, it just happened. There was no violation of my free will to choose to add "E", as I wanted to choose not to make any spelling mistakes. So the intentions and the outcomes of your action may be completely different, and negate Determinism being incompatible with Free will. (Ex. Just because something happened this way, and was determined to occur, this does not mean your higher level of thinking is also determined to occur a specific way)

In a way, it is similar to time travel (theoretical application). It's possible that no matter what you do, you will end up in the same location and the same result. This does not mean you had no free will over the course of events. You merely could not change the outcome. So the physical determination and mental determinism are inherently different as thus.

Perhaps I *should* include the expert's toy model to clarify my point. He draws out a physical level history versus an agential level of world history. Con has only proved the physical realization of the issue, and not considered the choices thought up by the person. By modeling a deterministic physical world, the expert proves that the agential free will may still exist, despite being imposed upon the physical history. As he notes, "It is easy to see that there is no determinism at the agential level in the present example. The agential histories branch out in various ways. As this example shows, such agential-level indeterminism is entirely consistent with determinism at the physical level, jointly with supervenience and multiple realizability". So Con's argument has not managed to penetrate my expert's differentiation of the scientific understanding versus philosophical understanding.

Rebuttal to Rebuttals

Nulla. It's exactly as I said earlier, one is compelled by logic while the other is not. Why? Because one is and isn’t you don’t choose what you are compelled by.
This makes zero sense whatsoever. I already noted the fact that you are choosing one specific action in the result because you endorse it. It is who you are. That does not negate the possibility of the other action. It just so happens it is reasonable for you to smoke or not smoke, depending on the information and motivation you receive.

2. it does not defeat my first argument of free will either, it does not even touch on it.
Do you mean your neuroscience argument? Sure it does. Because the physical level cannot simplify the psychological aspects, it is illogical to use pure biological functions to prove a lack of free will. Therefore, the only way through is an actual understanding of psychology (leading up to point 3).

3. "Consciousness occurs because there is something it is like, intrinsically, to undergo a certain organization of actualized differences in the brain." -- Con's Article
So that's great, he managed to link the possibility of your consciousness also being in your brain. However, he has not proved that the unconscious forces the conscious to undergo a decision which he had no other possibility of choosing. The essence of my expert's argument is, even if you could simplify the brain down to its brain waves and signals that we can predict, mere understanding does not negate the possibility of choosing the other option. In other words, even if I knew if a coin would go heads, tails, every single time, with perfect accuracy, that does not mean the coin could not go tails, or could not go heads. 

4. you are either compelled by reasoning or you are not, why is there a possibility of another choice? Do you choose whether or not you are compelled by reason? You may choose to act upon that reasoning but you do not choose to be convinced by it.
How do you know? How can you know for sure? The application of the fundamentals of physics becomes vague and used arbitrarily. For the moral and legal responsibility, we usually consider the context of agential description, rather than the physical level of things. Scientific understanding does not shift the thinking, as my paper notes:

"(S) Brutus could have chosen not to murder Caesar, is not
 (S-physical) Brutus could have chosen not to murder Caesar 
because of the full physical history of the world up to the act in question, 
including his psycho-physical history,
 but rather 
(S-psychological) Brutus could have chosen not to murder Caesar given his capacities as an agent"

When viewing the capacity of X to do Y in the condition of Z, the "can" becomes a moral question rather than a physical question. We are not asking if he is physically capable of murdering Caesar, and will physically do it, even if the physical execution is necessary to deduce him guilty. With regards to free will, his agential conditions, reasoning, and ideals, mental emotions, are all at stake and influencing him, resulting in the question of possibility. So that is why there may be another choice, with the possibility that you are convinced upon reasoning. 


Con
Objection: Pro tries to assert that my refutations should be inherently disregarded due to the opinion of the expert, however, this is an appeal to authority, unless Pro gives reasoning within their argument, this is nothing but an unproven assertion.


Neuroscience Defense:

The first paragraph makes an interesting claim, that there is a metaphysical level, why is this the case? My opponent has made an assertion here without evidence. They are assuming that there is a metaphysical level, as m study detailing over the consciousness being all based in the brain suggests, we have no reason to believe that.

Not only that but they seem to misunderstand my argument in its entirety, while yes, the process that these studies investigate happens in the subconscious mind, these things that are being tested are not simply flighted or fight responses. Some of them are mundane, like pushing a button. My point is: The studies I provide demonstrate that process in your brain determines your action, and this first paragraph does not refute this fact.

The essential problem with the second article is it’s begging the question essential it assumes free will to exist in its works. It looks to measure free will, not to demonstrate it exists, even claiming multiple times that this was because of a different interpretation of the evidence. Why should Pro’s once source’s interpretation be taken over three of mine? 

Also, the quote they provide is rather confusing in nature, let’s look at it, “the intention to take voluntary action are strongly influenced by events occurring after the execution of the action.” Wait so basically you wanting to do the action is influenced by things that happen after you do the action? What? Does that make any sense at all? How can something after the action you perform, influence what you do before you do the thing,

Not to mention, if it’s simply saying that reasoning is the source of free will, I ask again, do you choose what compels you of a certain fact? No, not at all, certain arguments are more convincing to each individual and one does not choose which are and aren’t convincing. Therefore this argument lays on certain philosophic interpretations that are simply not sound, as well as a different definition than what Pro provided.



Determinism:

My opponent once again opens with an assertion, that there is a metaphysical property to the world, but beyond that their rebuttal is even less true. They even claim has the adjective theoretical, so in theory x or y can be true, however, something being possible does not prove that it likely exists. It is possible that I have a million dollars, that does not prove I have a million dollars. 

Again, their so-called expert does not give any reasoning to support the claim that the agent would do something otherwise, simply assuming that they would, and could succeed. If my arguments have been weighted, then you are unable to choose any other action, and yet their entire argument is based on theoretical planes and assumptions which are simply unproven.

Their next argument makes a distinction between will and choice, which is true, they are different, and it is also true that you control your wills, but do you control your want to do those wills? Do you choose to play tennis over taking a walk? No, and Pro has done nothing to rebuke my actual point, intentionally or unintentionally the second paragraph is based on a straw man. My claim is that you do not choose what you want, or what you desire, not that our inability to do x or y prevents our free will.

Again, not at all, most people are simply more compelled to quit smoking whenever more reasoning is provided, some people are compelled by perhaps hurting their children, as my father was, while others take many years with professional therapy to do so. My point here is that no one chooses what they are compelled by to stop smoking, the physical aspect con is trying to point out, does not actually rebuke my argument.

Finally their last paragraph, a choice is simply an illusion and is being presumed by both con and their expert, what we should look at is what caused their actions. For example: Let’s say Abe was playing basketball, why? Pro would assert because they choose to do so, however, why is their desire to play basketball higher than anything else at the moment? Did they choose to want to play basketball? None of this has been refuted, Pro has just asserted that I have only considered a physical aspect of the issue, whenever they have failed to demonstrate any other aspect of the issue. 



Defense of Rebuttals:

1. Pro noting something and proving something are two very different things, my point was that you do not choose to want something, all my opponent does is say that you choose something because “it is who you are” then I must ask this question, do you choose who you are? What aspects make you up? No, not that Pro has demonstrated. 

2. I have already demonstrated with a study that consciousness is physical, as are psychological aspects, they say that it is illogical to use only physical “biological” aspects to prove a lack a free will, but have they actually supported this opinion? No. Again they have not demonstrated this.The physical level is the psychological level.

3. Pro has continued to assert and assert that my argument does not negate the possibility of a different decision, but it does, if we do not choose our desires, then we can not choose which desire is greatest and that causes our decision making if the brain is subconsciously making our decision before us, then we cannot choose, all of Pro’s arguments (similar to their expert) are based on the assumption that one can choose another option, they are begging the question.

4. This is a gish gallop if I’ve ever seen one, how can I know for sure? Due to my neurological evidence which proved you do not choose, and the fact that you can not choose whether to be convinced of x or not. Or are you saying right now, you can truly believe that Australia does not exist. You can say that you do not believe that Australia exists, but can you actually choose to believe it doesn’t. No, you can’t., again Pro’s arguments are presuming the agent has another option, which is begging the question.

Conclusion:

My opponent’s argument is flawed due to: A presumption that free will exists within their “proving” of free will, and ann unproven assertion that there is another realm besides the physical. Whereas my arguments do not make unnecessary assumptions, they do not rely on a single study, but multiple varied studies and arguments.

Pro has failed to meet their BoP, while I have essentially. 

Back to Pro.
Round 3
Pro
I see how Weakeredge believes his argument defeats mine. I will refute this succinctly.

I Neuroscience

Weakeredge attempts to make an attack that would result in a reductive form of physicalism. His evidence is as such:
- Consciousness is shown in energy in the brain
- The operation in the prefrontal cortex prepares for decision long before the actual decision
- Before and during operation, subjects were unaware of the decision
- Neurons were fired before the decision

Firstly, consciousness as energy does not prove that the brain functions were uncontrolled. The preparation for a decision does not negate the possibility of choosing a different decision. The action of before and during resulting in unawareness is here. But it does not imply that we made, and will make all decisions with a lack of endorsement as an agent. Despite the brain activity before actually coming to fruition of the decision only proves that the agent must rationalize and endorse the action. Otherwise, the randomness and indeterminant nature would disprove free will.

Therefore, the self-control and brain activity belonging to the agent proves free will's existence. Despite how nonsensical the idea of free will after the action seems, consider that humans have a reaction time of 200 milliseconds. The muscles may fire way before you realize what is happening. As such, the result of your physical activity will come to fruition in your mind, and you will be able to fully endorse your action, or change your mind, proving the existence of the free will. I will detail further in my conclusion why neuroscience doesn't defeat overall free will.

II Determinism

My claim is that you do not choose what you want, or what you desire, not that our inability to do x or y prevents our free will.

Again, not at all, most people are simply more compelled to quit smoking whenever more reasoning is provided, some people are compelled by perhaps hurting their children, as my father was, while others take many years with professional therapy to do so. My point here is that no one chooses what they are compelled by to stop smoking, the physical aspect con is trying to point out, does not rebuke my argument.

Finally their last paragraph, a choice is simply an illusion and is being presumed by both con and their expert, what we should look at is what caused their actions. For example: Let’s say Abe was playing basketball, why? Pro would assert because they choose to do so, however, why is their desire to play basketball higher than anything else at the moment? Did they choose to want to play basketball? None of this has been refuted, Pro has just asserted that I have only considered a physical aspect of the issue, whenever they have failed to demonstrate any other aspect of the issue. 

Con has repeatedly ignored the fact that I already stated the difference between "can" and "will do", as assisted by my paper. Con has failed to separate the action that we sponsor and will do, versus the other activities that we could sponsor and would do if we would sponsor it. Con has not given any reasoning why determinism is incompatible with my expert's idea of a metaphysical free will plane. Pro does not have to prove that free will exists beyond a reasonable doubt, only that it may simultaneously exist despite Con's refutations. The lack of physical free will does not disprove a mental free will, and so free will still exist.

Defense

1. Pro noting something and proving something are two very different things, my point was that you do not choose to want something, all my opponent does is say that you choose something because “it is who you are” then I must ask this question, do you choose who you are? What aspects make you up? No, not that Pro has demonstrated. 

My point is that the agent endorses the idea, and thus if you had the possibility of otherwise, with the other world's existence proving a free will, then free will exists. We cannot control the genetic predispositions that make us up. It is just that, the vast majority of decisions occur because our rational self has used the free will to precisely choose that idea. That is why free will exists. Otherwise, determinism may force one who does not believe in murder, to murder someone.

2. I have already demonstrated with a study that consciousness is physical, as are psychological aspects, they say that it is illogical to use only physical “biological” aspects to prove a lack a free will, but have they supported this opinion? No. Again they have not demonstrated this. The physical level is the psychological level.

Physical may be a demonstration of the psychological, but con has still failed to refute how each part of every chemical and fiber that we analyze is still only part of what makes someone them. We can only jump to conclusions in terms of game theory and ideal (point 3). As such, the best and only way to determine psychology is the theories regarding such, not what may partially influence the psychology of the person. Even if we could guess at the physical decision, the reasoning and the more abstract layers of free will are still far beyond what we can understand. Until we can simplify the entire psychology field into physical, we should prefer the rationality based on the nature of human beings as a whole, rather than specific persons' neurons firing.

3. Pro has continued to assert and assert that my argument does not negate the possibility of a different decision, but it does, if we do not choose our desires, then we can not choose which desire is greatest and that causes our decision making if the brain is subconsciously making our decision before us, then we cannot choose, all of Pro’s arguments (similar to their expert) are based on the assumption that one can choose another option, they are begging the question.
Con is once again mistaking the physical outcome of your decision for your mental. He has failed to show that the difference between "can" and "will" prevents free will's existence.

4. This is a gish gallop if I’ve ever seen one, how can I know for sure? Due to my neurological evidence which proved you do not choose, and the fact that you can not choose whether to be convinced of x or not. Or are you saying right now, you can truly believe that Australia does not exist. You can say that you do not believe that Australia exists, but can you choose to believe it doesn’t. No, you can’t., again Pro’s arguments are presuming the agent has another option, which is begging the question.

But Determinism presumes that the other option does not exist at all, which is also begging the question. Why does it surpass the possibility of the other dimension existing (or the possibility that I would choose the other decision)?

I will draw battle lines here and highlight why I am still winning:

- Con has displayed a strong correlation of our scientific understanding, predictions, to the way that we act. He had not shown that this is inconsistent with our endorsement and rationality. If a neuron fires the cell while you are unaware, is this really against your will? After all, you are your brain. And does the formation of choices, not match your decision in the end, matching you as the agent of morality?

The fact is that we still cannot predict the result of humans interaction. The type-reduction of physics down to psychology fails. The intentional based behavior is more useful than the biological state, with the many unknown outcomes concerning free will as an ontological idea. The lab's results of seconds and milliseconds cannot define the person's overall behavior throughout their entire life. Until we have a longitudinal study remarking free will over one's life, the scientific experiments are simply incompatible with our status as moral agents. Thus we cannot reduce the physical sense down compared to psychological predictions and theories. The capacity to do otherwise is then, the only resulting solution.

- Behavioral prediction and explanation is not the same as the executive function we use for actual choices and planning. 

- Con has repeatedly argued that the person is unable to choose the option because you cannot choose your reasoning. However, the reasoning is used to establish a counter-argument against indeterminism (as, without reasoning, selections are random and not made of free will). The possibility of other reasonings existing provides the free will counter-argument. One person who believes in smoking will likely smoke. One person who does not will not. But, since both actions exist, persons, in general, have the choice to smoke or not smoke, regardless of their reasoning.

- Con asks for a reduction of the choosing of options to the results of the options but has not justified why this is more reasonable than the reverse (results of the option comes from choosing options). If our endorsement was not a requirement, then the motivation of smoking vs the motivation of not smoking doesn't make sense in terms of "free action" as argued by my first researcher.

- Con thinks that assuming free will is a bad idea to prove free will, but it is by demonstrating that free will can coexist with determinism that displays, Con's second argument fails to refute free will.

In the words of my same old expert: 
"Although determinism implies that only one future sequence of events is physically possible given the current fully specified state of the world.

The more coarsely defined state of an agent and his or her macroscopic environment can still be consistent with more than one such sequence, and thus different alternative actions can be possible for the agent". 

Though biological dispositions rule over the global ideals that seem to contradict with free will, the moral responsibility is entirely different, as there must be the possibility of otherwise to prove that one can choose to do otherwise.
Con
Let’s jump straight into the argument, shall we?

Neuroscience Continued.

Pro begins by attempting to summarize my argument succinctly, and to stop this from becoming, Con said, Pro said, I will leave Pro’s quote below:

“Weakeredge attempts to make an attack that would result in a reductive form of physicalism. His evidence is as such:
- Consciousness is shown in energy in the brain
- The operation in the prefrontal cortex prepares for decision long before the actual decision
- Before and during operation, subjects were unaware of the decision
- Neurons were fired before the decision”

Pro fails to affirm that they have presented no evidence in support of their proposition or supposed actuality, nor do they actually even rebut any of my points on their study, which is begging the question, and making nonsensical claims, at the very least Pro is extrapolating incorrectly from such studies, and is only interpreting evidence. Even if Pro does successfully rebuke my point in regards to consciousness they have not affirmed their own burden of proof here, to prove that free will does exist.

I point this out to also note that Pro has not successfully represented my argument, my argument was that the brain determines your decisions before you are aware as my three studies provided in round 1 proved. All of them proved the existence of this phenomenon and scientifically verified its actuality. From there the rest of Pro’s argument crumbles. To the next claim that the studies I provide don’t prove my point, they do, they specifically endorse the notion that you do not choose your actions. 

To continue, Randomness is definitionally out of your control, is Pro claiming that one can choose something which is random? If so, then that process is not random and is equivalent to claiming that doing something because someone held a gun to your head as free will. Pro has still not moved beyond their very first source in their favor, instead relying on assertions that I have already addressed as well as rephrasing certain statements in such a manner that would have the voter assume it a new argument. 

I take the use of the word “interdependent” as evidence of that claim.

Pro goes on to somehow link self-control and brain-activity to prove free will? How, does Pro reach such a conclusion? The first supposed evidence is more begging the question and I am sure that voters are tired of me pointing it out, but it continues to be the case that Pro asserts their conclusion as evidence of said conclusion. Self-Control implies that such a thing as Free Will is true. It is a non-sequitur to say that Brain activity proves free will, and Pro leaves no sources to prove that the reaction of brain messages are equivalent to the conscious action of an agent. 

This entire argument is based on fallacies and presuming their own conclusion as is the problem with most of Pro’s argument.



Determinism Continued.

Pro does no work at all in their first paragraph, repeating their point on Smoking once again and on reasoning once more, and yet again I will remind Pro. One does not decide which is and isn’t compelling, you do not decide which reasoning you affirm or which pieces of evidence are convincing. This is something that Pro has never actually directly denied, let's not even mention the fact that Pro has used the word “physical” without any demonstration that there is more than the physical. 

“Finally their last paragraph, a choice is simply an illusion and is being presumed by both con and their expert, what we should look at is what caused their actions. For example: Let’s say Abe was playing basketball, why? Pro would assert because they choose to do so, however, why is their desire to play basketball higher than anything else at the moment? Did they choose to want to play basketball? None of this has been refuted, Pro has just asserted that I have only considered a physical aspect of the issue, whenever they have failed to demonstrate any other aspect of the issue.”

Just pointing out to voters who may have been confused with Pro’s lack of formatting, this is supposed to be a quote from my argument, the last paragraph of my last section on Determinism specifically. 

They once again assert that they do not have to prove it exists beyond a reasonable doubt, but they do have the exact same burden as Con, so if something is expected of Con of the evidence, then something should be expected of Pro of the evidence. Not to mention, my neuroscience point specifically contradicts the idea that there is not a possibility of another action, you do not decide, on top of that, as I have pointed out in the paragraph above, Pro has not proven the existence of this metaphysical plane, which is Pro’s burden. 



Defense Continued

1. 
Pro fails completely here, first of all, Pro has not demonstrated their assumptions, they have not proven that there is another possibility satisfactorily. Second of all their analogy falls flat, if someone does not choose their beliefs and they do not believe in murder, then they won’t murder. This is another non-sequitur, if we are using determinism, then only someone who has not chosen their belief of murder would commit murder. There is no contradiction. 

2.
This is nothing but an entire assertion, assertion after assertion with no evidence to back up their point. Not to mention, this does not refute the fact that people do not choose who they are fundamentally, so even if I were to concede the point, it would not impact my argument. It would simply be moving a layer down. Notice that Pro has failed to rebuke my idea sufficiently. 

3.
First of all, this is, tu quoque fallacy, second of all, notice that a single line of text responds to two of my rebuttals, essentially leaving 90% of them unanswered. Pro also is incorrect about the fallacy of begging the question fallacy, I note continuously throughout my arguments, my points on neuroscience provide the evidence for determinism, so no. Pro has neither refuted my point nor defended their own. 



Pro’s arrogant declaration of Victory

The victor of this debate will be determined by the voters, not by an individual debater declaring their intent. Let’s highlight why their conclusions they draw from this debate so far are incorrect. 

1. Conflating physicalism 
We are not debating will, we are debating “Free Will” as “The ability to do something else” In other words, what Pro is talking about here is not free will, but the simple will of the individual, which I have never disputed, just the choice of the agent or human in question. The actual conscious mind, which as Pro so helpfully pointed out previously, is separate from one’s unconscious mind. You do not choose the things that go on there nor do they make up your personality and sense of will directly. 


2. Reduction of physicalism
Pro makes a non-sequitur here, the conclusion that Pro draws from this is that it proves free will, however the only conclusion we can draw from physicians not being able, also Pro is flatly wrong. My supposed “reduction of psychology to physical” is based on the studies that Pro is talking about, but the study on the conscious and how it is entirely physically existent. Pro essentially strawman’s me here, what the study they are referring to solves for is that people do not actively choose x or y, which is not Pro’s objection in this particular paragraph.

 
“- Behavioral prediction and explanation is not the same as the executive function we use for actual choices and planning.”
Pro has not demonstrated this with any evidence, and I have already rebutted the point throughout our discussion in our rebuttals. 

 
3. Possibility of Other Optins
This is conflating other’s actions with oneselfs, yes it is true that other people do believe in (let’s call it x) in reason x, while others believe in reason y. All this does is present the different reasonings, it does not all lead to the conclusion that the first person can choose between reason x and y. This is yet another non-sequitur. 

4. Accused Assumption
I have already explained why the default position is physicalism unless otherwise demonstrated, first of all, the evidence that such things as consciousness is physical and even the evidence that choice is an illusion is evidence towards my proposition. My opponent has provided no evidence to suggest that there is a metaphysical realm which half of Pro’s arguments rely on existing. Perhaps if their case was not contingent upon the fact of a metaphysical plane this would be excusable, but most, perhaps around half, of Pro’s rebuttals and Cases are made on the assumption of a metaphysical plane. 


“ Con thinks that assuming free will is a bad idea to prove free will, but it is by demonstrating that free will can coexist with determinism that displays, Con's second argument fails to refute free will.”
This is false, just because two propositions can simultaneously exist, this does not mean that one or the other is correct/true. For example: It is true that I can: Wear a brown sweater, and Wear blue socks. These two claims are compatible but that does not prove that I am wearing a brown sweater or blue socks. Pro still has to demonstrate the existence of free will, or their argument falls flat.

Pro quotes some things I’ve already disproven, and last note for Pro. 


“Though biological dispositions rule over the global ideals that seem to contradict with free will, the moral responsibility is entirely different, as there must be the possibility of otherwise to prove that one can choose to do otherwise.”
This is fundamentally incorrect, a possibility proves nothing, Pro must demonstrate that Human “Free Will” likely exists as their position of the resolution implies. Pro has not done this and has not fulfilled their burden of proof.

Round 4
Pro
This debate is probably way over my head but I will make conclusions as agreed upon, because I doubt anyone other than Whiteflame could judge an 80,000 character debate concerning free will.

Con keeps saying I must prove metaphysical existence of the other possibility, however, I have already done this through noting how Physical experiments can only predict small decisions and not the overall planning, explaining more important ideas and free will overall. As such, we should prefer psychological ideals similar to game theory, which presume that people are able to decide other choices.

Con tries to show how the physical ideals supervene on such a level that we would type reduce it to the psychological state of the moral agent, but has only given evidence from research and failed to link why, this quick decision making is not motivated by the rational agent. 

In conclusion: Despite the idea of people only making one decision in one timeline, the explanation is that the moral agent endorses this action. As such, there is a possibility of the other opposing decision being made. As the person "can" exercise the different choice, while still being themselves, this proves that free will exists. My burden was here to prove that either determinism didn't exist, or that free will is compatible with determinism. Because the former is extremely difficult to accomplish, I left it con to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt, and still displayed the fact that he only said you merely act in a pre-determined manner with no reasoning. Even if you do not choose your reasoning, the fact is that you had the other choice possible to you. Each individual human being is able to select both choices in a crucial circumstance where you are to select either a choice A or a choice B. They are able to back this up with their motivations and ideals. If free will did not exist, it seems plainly illogical that the decisions are not 100% in one set of way (showing motivators overpowering consciousness), or 50-50 (showing randomness). And the person would feel coerced in some manner, or have severe cognitive dissonance against the big decision. By the fact that outside motivators can make people feel in control or out of control (especially concerning addiction), it's definitive that the person would have to have free will in the first place, to feel violation of the action. Clearly, I have shown already that free will exists.

Vote for pro.
Con
Closing Statment

As Pro noted in their conclusion, this last argument space will be used for closing remarks and a conclusion to the debate, I thank voters for following so far, and to Undefeatable for the interesting debate.

The central points came down to the possibility of other outcomes and the supposed existence of a metaphysical realm. Unfortunately Pro fails to meet both of these burdens, I am to, throughout the debate, rebuke these time and time again. Either through a lack of evidence or through logical flaws Pro does not justify their proposition that "On Balance, Human "Free Will"  likely exists." Do note the word likely here, and notice how the closest Pro got to this was, "Possibly" even if I failed to rebuke all of their statements. The closest they would get to prove their claim true is "possibly".

To continue on, my argument of determinism could be summed up as thus: 
P1: The only two reasons to do anything is because you are forced or because you want to
P2: You do not choose what you want and don't want
C: Therefore you do not choose your actions, Free Will doesn't exist. 

My argument for science could be summed up as follows:

P1: Scientists are capable of predicting behavior before a decision is made
P2: Scientists make this prediction solely on the basis of subconscious brain activity
Con: Therefore the person does not choose their actions, Free will doesn't exist

This is not a new argument for all of those confused, this is a summary of my first round of determinism. Notice that Pro barely fought back against these claims and focused on the rebuttal section (For most of the debate) and my studies on Neuroscience, which, in the end, they failed to affirm. Most of Pro's contentions aren't very convincing towards a conclusion of likely existence, whereas my contentions in return would mean that free will necessarily exist. My point in comparing the two states of contention is to show how I met my goal post and Pro did not.

Thank you once again for the opportunity to debate such an interesting principle. 

Vote Con.