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Topic

(Context in the description) We should accept Elon Musk's offer to colonize Mars.

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All stages have been completed. The voting points distribution and the result are presented below.

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1

With 1 vote and 3 points ahead, the winner is ...

Intelligence_06
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Technology
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CONTEXT:
You are the UN (United Nations) and Elon Musk makes an offer to us to colonize Mars. If you accept, the first colony on Mars will be a private one.
Motion: We should accept Elon Musk's offer to colonize Mars.

(Motion taken from the World Scholars Cup Regional Round, Dubai-1. I think it's a really debatable topic.)

Round 1
Con
Hello Intelligence_06, I hope we have a productive and intense debate ahead of us.

Note: I am a TINY bit scared, seeing as PRO is Number 9 on the leaderboards with a 75% win rate, but I will endeavor to do my best.

Now, with the debate:

DEFINITIONS:

Elon Musk: Elon Reeve Musk FRS is an entrepreneur and business magnate. He is the founder, CEO and Chief Engineer at SpaceX; early-stage investor, CEO and Product Architect of Tesla, Inc.; founder of The Boring Company; co-founder of Neuralink and OpenAI. (Credit. Wikipedia)
Allow: consent to receive or undertake (something offered).
Colonize: send settlers to (a place) and establish political control over it.

Now to the arguments: 

1. Why Elon Musk?

Elon Musk is a private entrepreneur and should not be responsible for humanity's quest to go to Mars. If anything, we should ask Elon Musk to give the information to NASA. Also, the chances that Elon Musk has developed all of this in private is highly improbable and it is likely NASA has gotten some information on the matter. 
NASA should, instead of letting ONE MAN be responsible for going to Mars, should ask Elon Musk to give them the confidential information that is required to get to Mars and instead have a government lead expedition to Mars, which is surely much safer than putting all of it in the hands of a entrepreneur.

Additionally, according to nationalgeographic.com:
Now, NASA is hoping to land the first humans on Mars by the 2030s. ... So far, only uncrewed spacecraft have made the trip to the red planet, but that could soon change. NASA is hoping to land the first humans on Mars by the 2030s—and several new missions are launching before then to push exploration forward.
If NASA is interested, and Elon provided a way to get there, surely then NASA has the authority and reasoning to ask for the information. Also potentially including legal oppression at a denial of information, and the government would have that information.

 2. Elon Musk has the potential to turn corrupt.

According to the Washington Post:
The idea that wealth is morally perilous has an impressive philosophical and religious pedigree. Ancient Stoic philosophers railed against greed and luxury, and Roman historians such as Tacitus lay many of the empire’s struggles at the feet of imperial avarice. Confucius lived an austere life. The Buddha famously left his opulent palace behind. And Jesus didn’t exactly go easy on the rich, either — think camels and needles, for starters.
The point is not necessarily that wealth is intrinsically and everywhere evil, but that it is dangerous — that it should be eyed with caution and suspicion, and definitely not pursued as an end in itself; that great riches pose great risks to their owners; and that societies are right to stigmatize the storing up of untold wealth. That’s why Aristotle, for instance, argued that wealth should be sought only for the sake of living virtuously — to manage a household, say, or to participate in the life of the polis. Here wealth is useful but not inherently good; indeed, Aristotle specifically warned that the accumulation of wealth for its own sake corrupts virtue instead of enabling it. For Hindus, working hard to earn money is a duty (dharma), but only when done through honest means and used for good ends. The function of money is not to satiate greed but to support oneself and one’s family. The Koran, too, warns against hoarding money and enjoins Muslims to disperse it to the needy.
Put simply, this states that rich people should be careful because being rich can cause you to make irrational and immoral decisions. But what id someone wasn't careful? I call to the stage, Elon Musk. How can we trust this man, with a net worth of 335 Billion USD, to stay true to his promises and stay a good person? We can't! It's highly illogical to trust this one man to stay good and stay away from the undeniable temptations of human desire.

3. Why?

Why Mars? If Elon Musk has the money to get to Mars, why not just fix Earth first? By going to Mars, we are diverting attention from Earth, our home, for a barren planet with red rock and water that dried up millions of years ago. It doesn't make any sense!

Conclusion:

In the following arguments, I have proven that accepting Elon Musk's offer to go to Mars is illogical and urge voters to understand this and vote accordingly.

PRO, the stage is yours. 




Pro
Rebuttals

1. Elon Musk is a private entrepreneur

In short, because Elon Musk is a business owner instead of a NASA official, we should not trust him, according to Pro. This is not a stable argument as SpaceX has sent numerous rockets into the space and back with reusable rockets. SpaceX is also the first private organization to do all these[1]:
  • Send people to the ISS.
  • Launch 143 satellites
  • Launch a reusable rocket
  • Work with NASA and replace one-used engines with reusable engines
  • Launch private crew into space
These would imply that SpaceX is no normal company. Within half of a decade, SpaceX has done all these. What are we to expect in the next ten years seeing the speed of SpaceX growing technologically? How can we say that SpaceX will fail?

More than that, it seems like that even my opponent agrees with the fact that SpaceX is working with NASA, it already is. However, if SpaceX and NASA are both working on the same project, it is still Elon Musk's proposal for such project, and it is still Elon Musk's proposal, no matter how many people are in charge of it as long as they work with him and not against him. We have reasons to believe that Elon Musk will cooperate on this matter. In fact, the two have already cooperated[2].
In 2016, Musk stated that there is no expectation of receiving NASA contracts for any of the Mars architecture system work, but affirmed that such contracts would be good.[74][better source needed] In 2020, NASA funded a SpaceX proposal to develop a crewed Moon landing system based on Starship, Starship HLS.[75]
  • In the end, Nasa is probably on the side of Elon here. A proposal by Elon, backed by Nasa, should be worth it.
  • SpaceX has already picked private crew in missions. It is plausible that SpaceX has experts on who should go on this mission.
    • Elon's trusted experts can pick the right people for him to carry out the mission, or so it appears so.
2. Elon is Rich

According to Pro, because Elon is rich, he is not to be trusted with. The US has even more money, why is it then trusted? Okay, even then, wealth and trustability are not directly linked for any reason. I mean, SpaceX has achieve things in such a short amount of time, so Elon at least should be trusted to some degree, especially since even NASA agrees to work with him, right?

For Hindus, working hard to earn money is a duty (dharma), but only when done through honest means and used for good ends. The function of money is not to satiate greed but to support oneself and one’s family. The Koran, too, warns against hoarding money and enjoins Muslims to disperse it to the needy.
There is no reason Elon wouldn't invest using the money left and making more money for SpaceX so even more advanced things could be created in the future. He is a master at doing that. Elon indeed is putting his money in SpaceX to good use here. He is even doing recycling work with the space rockets! What are we to say that Elon is wasting anything in space?

3. Why?

How do we know that the money will be used for earth problems if there is not a goal for Mars? Elon has proposed the Mars plan from 2001[2], and if there is not that, Elon may really become corrupt because a surplus of money being unused. If Elon did not push for Mars, then we do not know when anyone else would go to mars. Elon, frankly, has singlehandedly pushed the frontier of technology.

Space technology has sparked daily equipment as well. For example, tinfoil and insulator material are first tested on spacecrafts, then being "domesticated", being used in homes. With such an advanced project, it would be rather rational to believe that it will push the speed of scientific improvement.

Conclusions:
  • Elon's SpaceX is such a successful company that it would be expected that it could carry out the Mars mission.
    • Elon has worked with NASA and even then, it is still Elon's proposal as he proposed it initially.
  • Elon's men have picked private personnel for a successful space mission.
    • Why is it not trusted for SpaceX to pick private astronauts for Mars?
  • Elon's richness does not make him untrustworthy.
    • SpaceX is an enough trustworthy company.
    • Elon has the right to save money to make more successes in the future.
    • Richness has no direct correlation with trustworthiness.
  • Going into space is worth it.
    • It may bring us more daily tools derived from the high-tech used in the project in the future.
    • It may even spark improvement in the future.
    • How do we know how long will it be before the next person stands out to go to Mars? If Elon did not propose, do we even know if we will go to mars ever?

Onto you, Pro.

Round 2
Con
Thank you Intelligence_06,

ARGUMENTS:

Misallocation of attention and resources:

My focusing on Mars, we will have to spend resources and time on building a rocket, taking attention away from Earth and potentially leading us to collapse.

Unknown Factors:

Elon Musk may be a brilliant man, but he can't predict everything. Unknown factors on the trip may lead to a crash and the deaths of the entire crew.

Needs of 5-7 Crew Members:

The average person needs 2500 calories a day to survive. If the journey lasts 7 months, as predicted by NASA, with a crew of 5-7 people, the food needed to supply all of them would be too much to support all of the members. 

REBUTTALS:

Elon Musk's private company, SpaceX, will most likely team up with NASA to get to Mars, and should therefore be worth it. 

What my opponent has failed to realize is that this expedition, as stated in the description, will make the first colony on Mars a PRIVATE ONE. We are then safe to assume that the trip itself will be deemed as a private one, for one's one personal means, and will be presented as such to the UN. The proposal will not be shown as a multi-backed journey, but a private expedition unable to be controlled by NASA or the UN. 

Another reason that NASA will be unlikely to be backing this trip is the fact that NASA holds no stocks in SpaceX:
In early 2012, approximately two-thirds of SpaceX stock was owned by Musk[35] and his 70 million shares were then estimated to be worth US$875 million on private markets,[36] valuing SpaceX at US$1.3 billion.[37] In May 2012, with the Dragon C2+ launch Dragon became the first commercial spacecraft to deliver cargo to the International Space Station.[38] After the flight, the company private equity valuation nearly doubled to US$2.4 billion or US$20/share.[39][40] By that time, SpaceX had operated on total funding of approximately $1 billion over its first decade of operation. Of this, private equity provided approximately $200 million, with Musk investing approximately $100 million and other investors having put in about $100 million.[41] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SpaceX#2010%E2%80%932012:_Falcon_9,_Dragon,_and_NASA_contracts
and even if SpaceX has teamed up with NASA in the past, it is unlikely Elon will want the first ever manned expedition to Mars to be one with shared merits, seeing as the resolution states that Elon has figured a way to avoid all the challenges of colonizing Mars, if NASA has been unable to think of such challenges, Elon will most likely have worked by himself at SpaceX's headquarters in South Texas, far away from NASA's home in Washington D.C.

Elon Musk/SpaceX should be trusted from previous deeds as well as money doesn't correlate with greed/desire

Imagine you have almost 300 Billion USD in your bank account. You are known and revered as one of the greatest space explorers to ever live. Political powers bow down to your mass influence. Now, you are being trusted to go to Mars and colonize it before any other human. 

Think about it.

Elon Musk is a huge power in various circles, may it be Space, Money, Power. The desire to use this money for other things other than the ones they entitle you is going to be expanded, seeing as the government can't possibly see what you're doing on Mars. The fact that this is a factor is a huge implication that we should not trust Elon Musk to be true to his word and not break any laws up there.

As well as this, we have been talking about Elon Musk solely, but what about the officials and workers in SpaceX. Might they not hold Elon Musk's integrity and go corrupt?

Elon's men have picked private personnel for a successful space mission.

That process of picking personnel for the mission can easily backfire. Spies from enemies and rivals could get in through personnel and do who knows what in the inner circles of the arguably most important mission in the whole of humanity.

Going into space is worth it.

My opponent has brought up 3 points:

    • It may bring us more daily tools derived from the high-tech used in the project in the future.
    • It may even spark improvement in the future.
    • How do we know how long will it be before the next person stands out to go to Mars? If Elon did not propose, do we even know if we will go to mars ever?
1. It may bring us more daily tools derived from the high-tech used in the project in the future.

The creation of unmanned drones/rovers have already allowed us to experiment on Mars, rendering this argument useless. And if my opponent says that human conditions are different from rovers and say there might be things we don't know, the fact that any useful object for experimenting will be broken down in the 7 month journey should render this useless. 

2. It may even spark improvement in the future.

Burden of Proof states that my opponent must provide a detailed explanation of what he means by this and examples of what previous expeditions have done. 

3. How do we know how long will it be before the next person stands out to go to Mars? If Elon did not propose, do we even know if we will go to Mars ever?

My opponent has clearly not read my first argument, in which I stated:

If NASA is interested, and Elon provided a way to get there, surely then NASA has the authority and reasoning to ask for the information. Also potentially including legal oppression at a denial of information, and the government would have that information.
This renders my opponents arguments inert and void.

I'm too tired to make a conclusion, I've been working on this for 30min straight.

Pro, onto you. 

Pro
Rebuttals

Misallocation:
It is up to Con to prove why this is generally a problem and I did not propose this. Con did.

On the other hand, I can provide many examples of space exploration actually helping us.
Research done at the ISS and on Mars helps researchers improve conditions here on Earth in many ways, including: The technology developed for NASA enters the civilian market. From memory foam and cordless vacuums to mammograms, we have space exploration to thank for many modern-day conveniences.
[1]
Not only that, going to mars can help us on Earth. For example, we can turn Mars into a research site[2] and such projects can help the improvement of robot technology. It has been speculated that we could grow food on Mars. Such experiments could definitely provide more aspects of how to grow our food on Earth.[2].
The potential benefits for us here on Earth lie in the technology which enables robots to be autonomous. As experts work on new and more sophisticated algorithms to make a robot operate on its own on Mars’ surface, the same technology can be deployed here. Sensing capabilities also need to improve, and this will lead to smarter and faster autonomation in self-driving cars, manufacturing robots, and many more areas.[2]
 
But how does growing food on Mars under these conditions benefit us on Earth? “The simulants we used—one comes from a Hawaiian volcano. The simulant for Martian soil comes from the Arizona desert,” explains Wamelink. “If we are successful in growing plants on Mars, we can help food production on Earth.” This would be particularly useful in areas where the land is not well-suited to growing crops, and where food scarcity becomes a killer.[2]
In the end, going to Mars isn't just a waste. It can still tell us how to make robots and grow food.

Unknown factors
Con believes just because the condition is unpredictable Elon is not to be trusted, despite that Mars missions can definitely be successful. If the potential of failure is enough to stop the mission, then don't take any risks and don't go to space, I guess, because space missions are dangerous.

5-7 Astronauts
Con needs to prove why this is too much. From [2], we can know that, in fact, these problems are under control and definitely could be tackled. The Space shuttle can bring more than 5-7 people and it is said that 3D-printing food is theoretically possible. How, then, is it too much to bring people onto mars?

We don't need to go now: That is why the rocket is still on the ground now. We are going when technology is ready, and these technologies are theoretically possible.

Imagine you have almost 300 Billion USD in your bank account. You are known and revered as one of the greatest space explorers to ever live. Political powers bow down to your mass influence. Now, you are being trusted to go to Mars and colonize it before any other human. 

Think about it.\
Imagine you earn a few trillions every year. You have enough money to start wars in Libya, Afghanistan, etc. You have sent people on the moon and back several times successfully. Political powers literally bow down to your mass influence. This is the US. The US is still influential in Space.

Not even NASA has done anything odd with space, what is Elon going to do? So far, Elon has worked all towards the side of humanity and not against. He has sent satellites and rockets up to help humanity, not to burn resources without a cause. Sources in R1. Elon has history of working with NASA and these projects turned out to be successful. Why is anyone still doubting them on this level?

As well as this, we have been talking about Elon Musk solely, but what about the officials and workers in SpaceX. Might they not hold Elon Musk's integrity and go corrupt?
That process of picking personnel for the mission can easily backfire. Spies from enemies and rivals could get in through personnel and do who knows what in the inner circles of the arguably most important mission in the whole of humanity.
The fact that they have carried out wonderous missions on behalf of humanity means that they could at least be trusted. Why would they suddenly turn against the entire humanity in such an important mission? Not even in the cold war, not even the Apollo-Soyuz mission, did astronauts do such evil things. Why is it a concern, and what could they do, killing the future of humans, including themselves by doing so?

the fact that any useful object for experimenting will be broken down in the 7 month journey should render this useless. 
Obviously No. We are still experimenting on Mars, via things that land in more than 6 months after their launch. If they break down, it means that it is an accident.

My opponent has clearly not read my first argument, in which I stated:

If NASA is interested, and Elon provided a way to get there, surely then NASA has the authority and reasoning to ask for the information. Also potentially including legal oppression at a denial of information, and the government would have that information.
Even if NASA agrees to fund such an objective, it is still Elon's proposal. No matter how many agencies have the information, as long as Elon chooses who makes the rocket and who goes on it, it remains private according to Con's descriptive comments. The fact that NASA holds no stocks doesn't deny the fact that SpaceX and NASA has worked together successfully already. No matter how much NASA funds, it is still Elon proposing it and it stands. Con has proven nothing in the end on this issue. I ask again.

Conclusion

  • Going to Mars can help with our automatic and agricultural businesses and that is good.
  • Elon is famous for carrying out missions on behalf of humanity and has worked with NASA. It is generally of no concern that he will suddenly turn its back. Same for his trusted men and women.
  • Technological concerns should be no concern at all because the challenges are theoretically possible to solve and we won't go until we are ready.
  • According to the description, a Private journey doesn't mean NASA can't fund it. It just has to be that Elon is the centre of the deal and he chooses who goes on Mars. Even if NASA funds the trip, Elon still is the one proposing it as he proposed it back in 2001.

Round 3
Con
Rebuttals:

Misallocation:

Those examples of space exploration benefits are outdated now, and could easily be done anywhere else. 

Some examples from PRO:

The potential benefits for us here on Earth lie in the technology which enables robots to be autonomous. As experts work on new and more sophisticated algorithms to make a robot operate on its own on Mars’ surface, the same technology can be deployed here. Sensing capabilities also need to improve, and this will lead to smarter and faster autonomation in self-driving cars, manufacturing robots, and many more areas.[2] (Why not just test them here?)
 
But how does growing food on Mars under these conditions benefit us on Earth? “The simulants we used—one comes from a Hawaiian volcano. The simulant for Martian soil comes from the Arizona desert,” explains Wamelink. “If we are successful in growing plants on Mars, we can help food production on Earth.” This would be particularly useful in areas where the land is not well-suited to growing crops, and where food scarcity becomes a killer.[2] (Controlled environments easily replicate this, as well as cost less. )
Therefore, this argument is invalid and should be regarded by voters as such unless the opponent responds to the claims mentioned above. 

Unknown factors:

Previous trips to Mars were successful and NASA was willing to fund them because they were ROBOTS. Human risk is much different. We are risking the lives of people with families and friends to send them on a expedition that we don't know all the variables for. No one would agree to that, and forcing someone to do so would be inhumane.

5-7 Astronauts:

3D PRINTING FOOD:

It's silly that PRO would bring this up, seeing as 3D printing food would require materials in the printer, which would surpass the amount possible on a spaceship.

Preparation:

I concede this point.

USA Counter-Argument:

My opponent has argued that:

Imagine you have almost 300 Billion USD in your bank account. You are known and revered as one of the greatest space explorers to ever live. Political powers bow down to your mass influence. Now, you are being trusted to go to Mars and colonize it before any other human. 

Think about it.\
But my example focused on Elon Musk, an individual. The USA is a nation composed of 300 million people, and, according to Why Small Team Collaboration Usually Beats Larger Groups (doist.com)

Studies are piling up showing that adding more team members may actually hinder team productivity overall. In fact, there’s a growing consensus among business professionals that five to eight member teams maximize employees’ potential. This small number leads to more engagement, accountability, and productivity.
The USA's massive size has hindered it from doing what it pleases, while Elon Musk is a individual who doesn't have anyone to control him.

Not even NASA has done anything odd with space, what is Elon going to do? So far, Elon has worked all towards the side of humanity and not against. He has sent satellites and rockets up to help humanity, not to burn resources without a cause. Sources in R1. Elon has history of working with NASA and these projects turned out to be successful. Why is anyone still doubting them on this level?

Potential of failure and the variable argument.

The fact that they have carried out wonderous missions on behalf of humanity means that they could at least be trusted. Why would they suddenly turn against the entire humanity in such an important mission? Not even in the cold war, not even the Apollo-Soyuz mission, did astronauts do such evil things. Why is it a concern, and what could they do, killing the future of humans, including themselves by doing so?

Intelligence has clearly not read my argument on spies and rivals who want Elon to go bust. 

Obviously No. We are still experimenting on Mars, via things that land in more than 6 months after their launch. If they break down, it means that it is an accident.
We have been experimenting with robots, not things like organic life or creatures. 

Even if NASA agrees to fund such an objective, it is still Elon's proposal. No matter how many agencies have the information, as long as Elon chooses who makes the rocket and who goes on it, it remains private according to Con's descriptive comments. The fact that NASA holds no stocks doesn't deny the fact that SpaceX and NASA has worked together successfully already. No matter how much NASA funds, it is still Elon proposing it and it stands. Con has proven nothing in the end on this issue. I ask again.

The definition of private is:

belonging to or for the use of one particular person or group of people only.
therefore, it belongs to Elon only. 

Sorry it was so brief, was supposed to be doing hw. 
Pro
REBUTTALS

1. Robots: Testing them here

This is essentially "If you think the exam is hard, then just don't take the exam, instead just take practice exams!" Well, for one, mars exploration is definitely useful, as it deepens our understanding of the universe. We have yet to send anyone on Mars, so such a trip would also have valuable results regarding how human bodies react to Mars conditions. These would require huge funds to replicate on Earth and it would probably be a waste of space anyways, recreating a chunk of a less habitable planet for experiment instead of reshaping it to be more habitable. Also, testing robots on Mars is definitely of more technological value, considering rockets would be launched, and while you could theoretically slow down the delay to simulate Mars conditions, testing on Earth wouldn't mean as much as in Mars, the same way that taking a mock exam isn't worth as much as the real deal. You can't apply to a college with a mock SAT exam you took on a holiday at your home, and you can't say you went to mars with wasted material simulating Mars on Earth deserts.

Plus, testing them on Earth would yield close to no discovery, considering we are eventually testing them on a location we already know about. Our Mars robots are to contribute to better understanding of the condition on Mars, instead of just solely existing(We have already gone past the stage of the space race where just putting a vehicle on Mars is a W already). Mars robots(and potential human astronauts) could analyze, for example, how humans react to the ground on Mars, or how the high CO2 on Mars affect them. Since Moon Dust can infiltrate space suits, it would be very interesting to see if Mars does the same, and overcoming such challenges, with robots or without robots, would land oneself technologically reputable. The fact that one would survive such a trip would also mean that they are true heroes (of America?). And no, you can't say you went to mars by going to a simulation site on Earth.

2. Growing Plants: Here

Again, the fact that humans can plant on Mars would be a reputable achievement in of itself, and achievements on Earth cannot replicate it. If plant growth is possible and so is human sustainability on Mars, then such technological advance would definitely boost our confidence in humanity as well as our understanding of space, perhaps even better technology to be used in the future.

3. Technology allocation: Past

Opponent has yet to present evidence of why that isn't the point. Just because he hasn't seen it doesn't mean it won't. So far, I have presented evidence that in the last space race(which still were majorly consisted of projects where just putting something in Space is already a W). The nature of utility for the space projects, especially one this huge, would definitely at least give important information on what is habitable and how. It is a win, even if it is just knowledge and not technology. Opponent has presented no evidence of why there won't be technologies derived from such a titanic mission in size and in importance.

4. Risks and Danger

Previous trips to Mars were successful and NASA was willing to fund them because they were ROBOTS. Human risk is much different. We are risking the lives of people with families and friends to send them on a expedition that we don't know all the variables for. No one would agree to that, and forcing someone to do so would be inhumane.
Previous wars to the Middle East by the US were unsuccessful and yet the US just kept involving in all the wars and the people all are willing to die. If someone is interested in joining in such a project and fit enough to do so, then at least they should be ready to sacrifice their lives. Considering that the Apollo and Soyuz missions already have ejection systems were the mission aborted, people dying is definitely less of a concern than, for example, the money spent on it and the broken equipment. If no one would agree to this mission, why did anyone agree to fly to the moon and back in the late 1960s, where space missions are far more dangerous than they are possibly now?

5. Extra weight

Opponent has provided no evidence why the aircraft can't support processed food and 5-7 astronauts. Pass.

6. USA

But my example focused on Elon Musk, an individual. The USA is a nation composed of 300 million people, and, according to Why Small Team Collaboration Usually Beats Larger Groups (doist.com)
Ignore the core of the point my opponent is trying to make. It is basically impossible for all 300 people to even be considered a team or Elon himself as a team. If I am misinterpreting this then this just means that my opponent is speaking nonsense for the quote above.

Plus, about 18K people work at NASA. About 2200 people work at ESA. I have yet to hear that ESA has sent even 2 functional rovers on Mars, let alone putting people on the moon 50 years after the US had done it. SpaceX has about 7.8K people working within, and yet ESA has yet to develop reusable rocket engines, etc, despite having a smaller core team. All in all, the number of people does not directly correlate to the range of things it can do. Even if there is a correlation, it is very small.

Even if NASA is a superior team at controlling stuff(which they probably are), the fact that they can fund SpaceX in knowledge and money(and leaving all the production, personnel, etc to Elon's side) is also viable(and the two work with the side of humanity, not against). Such an argument is altogether DROPPED by the opponent, or at least the response is already being responded by a section above.

Opponent has moved the goalpost by changing the definition of Private. Before the start of the debate, I asked him what "private" is, and he responded:
"A privately held company or private company is a company which does not offer or trade its company stock to the general public on the stock market exchanges, but rather the company's stock is offered, owned and traded or exchanged privately or over-the-counter."
In which a private deal between SpaceX and NASA, and no more deals for SpaceX, which is possible, still does not contradict the definition of "private" we have agreed on before the debate.

Now, my opponent is saying that NASA can't even fund SpaceX, or so it seems. NASA collaborating with SpaceX does not make it non-private, especially if all the work is done by Elon and the crew. I have yet to see a big company with no relationship with other big companies, and even if there are financial bonds between the two, that does not erase any one of them their private status, and a private firm isn't made non-private just because it received governmental funds.

7.Spies?

The relationship between the US and the Soviets is definitely tenser in the 1960s than SpaceX and its competitors are now. Nobody even tried to sabotage opposing missions, as a spy, on old missions such objectives are merely to put an object in the sky or put people outside planet earth. The likelyhood of such things happening is so small and there has been zero precedents, even during the hottest moments of the cold war. This is a mission with huge utility. Having spies is the least of the concerns here. Opponent has provided zero sources on why there WOULD be spies on such a mission, in fact, which means that this point does not stand.

Overall:
  • Going to Mars in this way has huge amounts of scientific and technological potential and such an act would do more things whereas on Planet Earth cannot be achieved.
  • There is no evidence on that going to Mars like this is useless.
  • There is no evidence on that extra food and astronauts are too much weight.
  • There is no evidence on that people will refuse this mission because it may fail.
  • My opponent has presented only weak evidence comparing NASA and SpaceX.
  • NASA can have a private deal with SpaceX and that is still fits the definition of "Private".
  • There is no evidence on that spies will be present to sabotage the mission, and that it would be a huge concern.
  • Overall, the benefits outweigh the harms, so please vote Pro.
Thanks for reading and have a merry Christmas.

Round 4
Con
Rebuttals:

This is essentially "If you think the exam is hard, then just don't take the exam, instead just take practice exams!" Well, for one, mars exploration is definitely useful, as it deepens our understanding of the universe. We have yet to send anyone on Mars, so such a trip would also have valuable results regarding how human bodies react to Mars conditions. These would require huge funds to replicate on Earth and it would probably be a waste of space anyways, recreating a chunk of a less habitable planet for experiment instead of reshaping it to be more habitable. Also, testing robots on Mars is definitely of more technological value, considering rockets would be launched, and while you could theoretically slow down the delay to simulate Mars conditions, testing on Earth wouldn't mean as much as in Mars, the same way that taking a mock exam isn't worth as much as the real deal. You can't apply to a college with a mock SAT exam you took on a holiday at your home, and you can't say you went to mars with wasted material simulating Mars on Earth deserts.

Plus, testing them on Earth would yield close to no discovery, considering we are eventually testing them on a location we already know about. Our Mars robots are to contribute to better understanding of the condition on Mars, instead of just solely existing(We have already gone past the stage of the space race where just putting a vehicle on Mars is a W already). Mars robots(and potential human astronauts) could analyze, for example, how humans react to the ground on Mars, or how the high CO2 on Mars affect them. Since Moon Dust can infiltrate space suits, it would be very interesting to see if Mars does the same, and overcoming such challenges, with robots or without robots, would land oneself technologically reputable. The fact that one would survive such a trip would also mean that they are true heroes (of America?). And no, you can't say you went to mars by going to a simulation site on Earth.
 We have yet to send anyone on Mars, so such a trip would also have valuable results regarding how human bodies react to Mars conditions:
We have sent robots up into space, with scanners able to scan temperature, pressure and any other important factors. There is no point in going to Mars, seeing as we can detect the factors which will be important to calculate how our bodies will react.

Testing on Earth wouldn't mean as much as in Mars, the same way that taking a mock exam isn't worth as much as the real deal. You can't apply to a college with a mock SAT exam you took on a holiday at your home, and you can't say you went to mars with wasted material simulating Mars on Earth deserts.
With the rovers we have sent on Mars, we could easily take all factors into place and create an environment exactly like Mars, without the cost of building a rocket to transport.

2nd Paragraph:
This entire argument simply supports my claims that robots could be used to test the factors on Mars.

Again, the fact that humans can plant on Mars would be a reputable achievement in of itself, and achievements on Earth cannot replicate it. If plant growth is possible and so is human sustainability on Mars, then such technological advance would definitely boost our confidence in humanity as well as our understanding of space, perhaps even better technology to be used in the future.

With the rovers we have sent on Mars, we could easily take all factors into place and create an environment exactly like Mars, without the cost of building a rocket to transport.

Technological Misallocation:

The entire core of my argument here is that we are spending resources on the wrong thing. My opponent defends the point that we should do it for solely knowledge. However, in the topic, it states that Elon is coming up to us NOW. We should not accept it because all the resources necessary should be spent avoiding Earthly problems. 

Risks and Dangers:
I am logical enough to concede the point.

Extra Weight:
Originally, I didn't research, and didn't know that a spaceship can hold 4.4 million pounds. I concede.  

USA:

I admit my shifting of goals was illogical, and I concede the point.

Spies:

Concession.

CONCLUSION:

  • I have proven that we should test robots here.
  • No new information could be earned from humans because of the existence of rovers.
  • We should not accept his offer NOW, which is what the topic says.
  • I concede that risk is a illogical factor
  • I concede a spaceship could hold the amount necessary for food. 
You've got me unsure about my own side, but I will leave it up to the voters.

Vote whoever you damn want. 



Pro
REBUTTALS

Allocation

First, my opponent has presented nothing beyond sourceless doubts on that such a mars trip would not bring us better technologies, especially since Elon is a master of making new tech into the world(Boring machines *cough* AI brain networks *cough* solar technology *cough* payment technology). There is essentially NO evidence that technologies will not be brought over with such a trip, and precedents show that technologies may as well be ported to citizens.

Second, the proposal(according to this debate) shows NO exact dates for the launch, and the only criteria needed are:
  • We send humans onto mars
  • Elon Musk and SpaceX is the centre of the project
  • The project is Private
There is no specified date in the description, so "accepting it now" would not automatically mean that the project will be rushed now. Accepting this means that Elon, with an unspecified deadline, would do it, and Elon exhibits trustworthiness in many projects, especially since his firm is skyrocketing in space technologies(pun intended) and is working with NASA on the side of humanity and not against. Elon seems like a man that could build something that could ideally shoot us all the way to Mars. Accepting his offer would mean that humanity, more likely than not, will have a great leap.

Opponent has yet to prove that terrestrial problems matter more than scientific exploration and achievement in an indefinite time scale. He has never even said a date in the description, and any attempt of adding a sure date to this proposal would be moving the goalpost. Landing people on the moon is both beneficial to the confidence of humanity as well as the scientific understanding of the universe. We could just let Elon wait and focus on other terrestrial issues first, and then go. That, still, does not contradict what the debate says.

In short, without any proposed time limit in the entire debate, claiming priorities is useless because as long as we go to mars in forever, it is a success. Opponent's argument here falls.

Robots and Conditions

We have sent robots up into space, with scanners able to scan temperature, pressure and any other important factors. There is no point in going to Mars, seeing as we can detect the factors which will be important to calculate how our bodies will react.
So...We launched machines ensuring us that there is a way that humans can survive with specific data giving us clues of HOW we could survive on Mars...but not actually even attempting to survive on Mars? (my response) That is literally like practicing for the SAT then decide to not take the SAT altogether based on personal whims. What is the point if we have necessary data, but then we don't even use them in a way they are intended to be used?

With the rovers we have sent on Mars, we could easily take all factors into place and create an environment exactly like Mars, without the cost of building a rocket to transport.
Well, that is still a preparation. Now, let's go onto a training equipment, which is a special plane, made to train astronauts to simulate zero-G conditions. If what my opponent proposes actually matters, Red Bull mechanics would be astronauts. Our goal is to send robots or humans onto MARS, not to make them survive in simulated harsh conditions. The latter could be used for training, but that wouldn't even be half a step for the mankind, and making humans survive on Mars is the real deal at last. Again, I do not recommend practicing for the SAT then decide to not take it at all for no reason. and mistaking preparation of what would be a great deal for humanity with the great deal itself would be absurd.

Going to Mars has value and our goal is not to make them survive in similar conditions. Our goal is to make them survive on Mars and Elon is enough trustworthy to do so as of this state.

Again, the fact that humans can plant on Mars would be a reputable achievement in of itself, and achievements on Earth cannot replicate it. If plant growth is possible and so is human sustainability on Mars, then such technological advance would definitely boost our confidence in humanity as well as our understanding of space, perhaps even better e have sent on Mars, we could easily take all factors into place and create an environment exactly like Mars, without the cost of building a rocket to transport.
Repeating, sending humans onto Mars and let them survive is in of itself a confidence-boosting, science-pushing, humanity-leaping achievement, not the fact that human can survive in harsh conditions. The Mars mission is in of itself full of technological value, and just brushing it off with preparation, such as preparing similar conditions on Earth, would be absurd as said in the last paragraph. Our goal is to send humans to Mars live, not let them survive in certain conditions, I say again.

All other points are being dropped or being conceded.

Conclusion
  • There are precedents of space exploration giving tech to humanity, and Elon can do such a thing. There is no evidence that a mission cannot bring tech.
  • No time limits are being set and the criteria are satisfied as long as Elon's companies successfully make humans survive on Mars, in forever, no matter when.
  • The mars mission is key in the fact that we sent humans into Mars, not because machines and people can survive in such conditions.
    • Simulated conditions on Earth are preparations and is not the real deal and the former does not carry as much explorational value as the latter, which the mission is aiming to achieve. Simulations on Earth is the Mars mission, without its primary intention and purpose, that is, going to Mars bla bla.
  • Thus, all the Opponent's points are refuted. Vote Pro if you find my points convincing.