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Thread: My physics professor baited me into a Socialism v. Capitalism debate today, and it did not go well.

  1. #1
    INGSOC GURPS's Avatar
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    My physics professor baited me into a Socialism v. Capitalism debate today, and it did not go well.

    My physics professor baited me into a Socialism v. Capitalism debate today, and it did not go well.



    Professor walks into room and immediately turns to me and says "Have you seen what's going on in Venezuela?"

    Me, flippantly: "Yeah, a bunch of CIA plants are inciting riots" Prof: "Funny, but no, Socialism is failing." Me: "Venezuela isn't failing because of socialism, their economy was dependent on oil and when oil tanked in -"
    Prof: "Hugo Chavez destroyed Venezuela."

    And then it morphed from there into a debate. I don't remember exactly how I got there, but I ended up on the position that even people who don't want to work should be provided for (which seems normal to me, but oh heeeeelll nooo). At that point, most of the class had arrived and was now 100% against me. I'm arguing that we have the resources to provide for everyone even if some don't do anything,

    Prof keeps talking about money,

    I'm saying forget money, focus on resources. I illustrate with how we have 3 times the number of homeless in empty houses, but then my classmates pipe up with "homeless people don't want to work". Go figure, they hate poor people.

    Apparently the professor has never heard of anyone die because they couldn't afford insulin, when I read him an article about that exact thing, he said the guy who died just made bad choices.

    The professor keeps talking about liberty and choices and all those platitudes, but nothing I say makes him stop or anyone in the class stop eating out of his hand.

    Maybe I'm just a bad debater. Prof is talking about taxes and welfare, I mention how WalMart employees use $6.2 billion in public benefits each year and he's subsidizing WalMart, which he called "fake news" (first time I've encountered that in the wild). I try to point out how workers labor value is being stolen, nobody listens, they're too busy jerking off Bill Gates.

    The professor is waxing on about how "capitalism uses humanities worst qualities to create wealth" I tell him that sounds like a dystopian novel.

    I'm trying to get through that this system doesn't work for everybody, but everyone keeps talking about choices.

    One kid told me after I said to the prof he wasn't everybody, the kid said "you're not everyone either, so why are you speaking for them?" Which didn't make any sense, but got a round of applause from the class.

    In keeping with the theme of workers not being paid enough, a girl behind me pipes up with her story about "I'm a single mom with 2 kids, work full time, go to school full time, and just bought a house." That's awesome for her, but she isn't everybody, not everybody can do that. I'm just digging my hole deeper.

    Literally everyone hates me at this point and thinks I'm some sort of extreme liberal who wants everyone to be poor. Today was the closest I've come to strangling someone, because the

    professor wouldn't let me finish speaking in a debate he initiated,

    talked over me, didn't listen, assumed everything I said was wrong, told me my definition of Socialism was incorrect, even though he admits to never reading Marx or Lenin. I'm getting fed up with these people Comrades. I don't know if I'm just bad at convincing people, or bad at debating, or if these other people are so wrapped up in their fantasy land they can't see outside of it, so whatever I say just bounces off their ideological force field. I can't make moral arguments, because these people have no morals.

    The professor said people who don't work deserve to die, and was completely alright with that. The professor called all of my statistics about Cuba "fake news" and refused to debate in good faith.

    I guess he was just trying to show me how smart he is, but he just came across as an arrogant ####head who happens to be good at physics. I'm just not very optimistic about being able to spread Socialist thought in the rural areas of this country.



    Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.
    - Robert J. Hanlon.

    “There is a deeply anti-democratic undercurrent to much of the criticism of the new president, borne aloft by an assumption that democracy is too important to be left to the voters.”

    And if a statue can oppress you, then I submit that you have greater issues. - A West.

  2. #2
    Which is why I will retire to a rural part of the country.
    "Pain heals. Chicks dig scars. Glory... lasts forever." - Shane Falco

  3. #3
    The most funny part of it was that the professor at a college was conservative, and the student at a rural college was a liberal.
    There are only two possibilities; one is that we are alone in the universe, the other is that we are not.
    Both are terrifying.

  4. #4
    People only use that Wal-Mart argument because Wal-Mart employs so very many people.
    The very same numbers could be applied to any retail outlet where employees make low wages.
    (BTW - as of now, the lowest Wal-Mart wage is 10 dollars an hour. Not bad for greeting people, stocking shelves and bagging groceries).
    Insults are the arguments employed by those who are in the wrong". Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  5. #5
    INGSOC GURPS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SamSpade View Post
    People only use that Wal-Mart argument because Wal-Mart employs so very many people.

    and NOT Unionized .... and they bring in billions a yr
    and the complaints from the left - Wal-Mart Employees are so poor they have to draw welfare ...
    however the that is not Wal-Mart's fault states set the bar so low, someone earning $ 10 bucks an hour qualify for benefits



    Minimum Wage JOBS are not a life time achievement award
    Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.
    - Robert J. Hanlon.

    “There is a deeply anti-democratic undercurrent to much of the criticism of the new president, borne aloft by an assumption that democracy is too important to be left to the voters.”

    And if a statue can oppress you, then I submit that you have greater issues. - A West.

  6. #6
    The only thing that could make that story better would be had the professor called him a racist.

  7. #7
    Visualize whirled peas Merlin99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SamSpade View Post
    People only use that Wal-Mart argument because Wal-Mart employs so very many people.
    The very same numbers could be applied to any retail outlet where employees make low wages.
    (BTW - as of now, the lowest Wal-Mart wage is 10 dollars an hour. Not bad for greeting people, stocking shelves and bagging groceries).
    WalMart employees use $6.2 billion in public benefits each year
    So they'd be using $20 billion(1) without WalMart kicking in their part.

    (1) not a real number, I don't know the exact amount
    ‎"I've learned that pleasing everyone is impossible, but pissing everyone off is a piece of cake"

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by GURPS View Post
    My physics professor baited me into a Socialism v. Capitalism debate today, and it did not go well.



    Professor walks into room and immediately turns to me and says "Have you seen what's going on in Venezuela?"

    Me, flippantly: "Yeah, a bunch of CIA plants are inciting riots" Prof: "Funny, but no, Socialism is failing." Me: "Venezuela isn't failing because of socialism, their economy was dependent on oil and when oil tanked in -"
    Prof: "Hugo Chavez destroyed Venezuela."

    And then it morphed from there into a debate. I don't remember exactly how I got there, but I ended up on the position that even people who don't want to work should be provided for (which seems normal to me, but oh heeeeelll nooo). At that point, most of the class had arrived and was now 100% against me. I'm arguing that we have the resources to provide for everyone even if some don't do anything,

    Prof keeps talking about money,

    I'm saying forget money, focus on resources. I illustrate with how we have 3 times the number of homeless in empty houses, but then my classmates pipe up with "homeless people don't want to work". Go figure, they hate poor people.

    Apparently the professor has never heard of anyone die because they couldn't afford insulin, when I read him an article about that exact thing, he said the guy who died just made bad choices.

    The professor keeps talking about liberty and choices and all those platitudes, but nothing I say makes him stop or anyone in the class stop eating out of his hand.

    Maybe I'm just a bad debater. Prof is talking about taxes and welfare, I mention how WalMart employees use $6.2 billion in public benefits each year and he's subsidizing WalMart, which he called "fake news" (first time I've encountered that in the wild). I try to point out how workers labor value is being stolen, nobody listens, they're too busy jerking off Bill Gates.

    The professor is waxing on about how "capitalism uses humanities worst qualities to create wealth" I tell him that sounds like a dystopian novel.

    I'm trying to get through that this system doesn't work for everybody, but everyone keeps talking about choices.

    One kid told me after I said to the prof he wasn't everybody, the kid said "you're not everyone either, so why are you speaking for them?" Which didn't make any sense, but got a round of applause from the class.

    In keeping with the theme of workers not being paid enough, a girl behind me pipes up with her story about "I'm a single mom with 2 kids, work full time, go to school full time, and just bought a house." That's awesome for her, but she isn't everybody, not everybody can do that. I'm just digging my hole deeper.

    Literally everyone hates me at this point and thinks I'm some sort of extreme liberal who wants everyone to be poor. Today was the closest I've come to strangling someone, because the

    professor wouldn't let me finish speaking in a debate he initiated,

    talked over me, didn't listen, assumed everything I said was wrong, told me my definition of Socialism was incorrect, even though he admits to never reading Marx or Lenin. I'm getting fed up with these people Comrades. I don't know if I'm just bad at convincing people, or bad at debating, or if these other people are so wrapped up in their fantasy land they can't see outside of it, so whatever I say just bounces off their ideological force field. I can't make moral arguments, because these people have no morals.

    The professor said people who don't work deserve to die, and was completely alright with that. The professor called all of my statistics about Cuba "fake news" and refused to debate in good faith.

    I guess he was just trying to show me how smart he is, but he just came across as an arrogant ####head who happens to be good at physics. I'm just not very optimistic about being able to spread Socialist thought in the rural areas of this country.




    That's pretty much what you'd find if you did some reading and googling around on the mindset in the US towards Russia in the late 50's and into the early 60's; most of the professors were older and more conservative and didn't wanna talk about how the war (II) was the actual driver of the post war era prosperity. Didn't want to talk about the beginning of big city decay that resulted from so many war based industries shutting down, didn't wanna talk about US exploitation in South America and the coming problems in SE Asia with the corrupt regimes we backed, etc.

    Plus, you dig a little deeper into Venezuela, there is no getting around the impact of oil's collapse and Chavez, far from being some socialist icon, was a classic crony capitalist, taking many private enterprises and giving to pals and political supporters. It's worth noting that the decline they are suffering is from the success's of his era, imperfect as they were.

    Thus the search for black and white answers, left and right, goes on in a gray world.
    ADHD; Interdisciplinary

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by This_person View Post
    The most funny part of it was that the professor at a college was conservative, and the student at a rural college was a liberal.
    Glad I wasn't the only one who found that funny.
    Crybaby Cripplecrow Hanging on a Monkey's Toe Club

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Chris0nllyn View Post
    Glad I wasn't the only one who found that funny.
    What I found amusing - without going to the source to check it out, so it may have been intentional - is that what is TYPICAL for college discussion is for the precise opposite to occur, where the professor isn't say, a math or science professor but a history or political science prof - and everything more or less reversed.
    Insults are the arguments employed by those who are in the wrong". Jean-Jacques Rousseau

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