Key Themes In Political Analysis
Terms in this set (73)
Give one main feature of a Conservative's view of Human Nature
Psychologically Imperfect (Dependant and need looking after) - Humans are not self reliant but are dependant creatures who need guidance and instruction. Humans are security seeking, desiring order and stability. Humans need a sense of belonging as they need to know where to stand in society.
-DISRAELI - believed in the duty to care for the whole of society 'Noblesse Oblige' forming an alliance with the workers
Give the second main feature of a Conservatives view of Human Nature
Intellectually Imperfect - Humans rationality and intellect is limited and unreliable, as such we are incapable of fully understanding the world around us. The world is far too complex for human reason to grasp fully 'The world is boundless and bottomless'.
Give a third feature of a Conservatives view towards Human Nature
Morally Imperfect, Selfish and Greedy - Humans are morally imperfect, humans are innately selfish and greed driven by those base human instincts and appetites. As a result Human progress is limited, abstract utopian ideas and theories are likely to be incorrect. Humans desire power, wealth, and need to be kept in line by fear and punishment.
-HOBBES - Leviathan = 'A war of all against all'
Identify and explain the two main Conservative political theorists concerning Human Nature.
HOBBES - Leviathan demonstrates the necessity for a strong central authority to avoid the evil and discord of civil war
GOLDING - Lord of the Flies - highlights that a society is quintessential to prevent a descent into brutal savagery - "Which is better, to have laws and agree, or to hunt and kill?"
Give three implications of a Conservative view of Human Nature.
1-Need for social order (prepared to sacrifice liberty, which can cause change and uncertainty, in favour of the need to create a stable and predictable social order - paternalism)
2-Importance of Social Institutions (complexity of existence makes it necessary to impose order on human conduct - traditional institutions provide stability)
3-Pragmatism (not having any fixed political ideas and ensures stability. An imperfect situation is better than striving for an unrealistic utopia)
Give the two other implications of a Conservative view of Human nature
4-Importance of tradition ('It is old custom that enables people to live together peacefully - The individual is foolish, but the species is wise')
5-The need for strong authority (Only effective deterrent is the law backed up by the knowledge it will be strictly enforced - The weakest has the strength enough to kill the strongest)
THE NEW RIGHT - Explain Neo-Liberal Economic view of Human Nature
Rational and Self-reliant in Economic Sphere (Based on CL)
-'whole is greater than the sum of its parts and that individuals have some collective identity beyond simple ties to family and nation is rejected as non-sensical.
-Shown in Thatcher's Economic Policy's of the 1980's i.e. Rolling Back The State
THE NEW RIGHT: Identifiy the Neo-Conservative (Social) view of Human Nature
Irrational and Dependant in Social Sphere (Based on traditional Conservative view of individual)
-Believe that too much individual freedom in the social sphere leads to immorality and evil behaviour. They fear a breakdown in social order caused by the Liberal belief in Social pluralism, toleration and the sovereign individual. They believed that the lack of social order has damaged society.
Explain two reasons why Conservatives support tradition and fear change
1- A Natural Law (traditional customs and practices are 'God given', having been chosen by an almighty creator. If humans tamper with tradition they are consequently challenging the will of God)
2- Accumulated wisdom of the past ( institutions and practices of the past contain 'inter-generational wisdom' , the wisdom and ideals of all past generations preserved for the benefit of the living and for generations to come)
Give an additional reason why Conservatives support tradition and fear change
Provides security and belonging - Established customs are recognisable, familiar and reassuring and give both society and individuals a sense of identity- a feeling of rootedness and belonging. Tradition ensures that society remains stable and provides social cohesion by linking people to the past.
Give 2 examples when a Conservative would agree with change
1- Inevitable change (change when it can no longer be resisted) - It would be wrong to suggest Conservatism is a doctrine of 'no change', Conservatives are above all pragmatists. Change should be the result of a more gentle relationship between government and governed, decisions should be based on 'limitations and traditions of the community'.
2- Change in order to conserve - Change is sometimes necessary in order to conserve. Burke emphasised a pragmatic approach to change. Moderate and measured change was acceptable if such change was designed to conserve the natural order.
Give another example when a Conservative would agree with change
3- Moderate Incremental Change - Nothing too radical, especially no social engineering or revolution. Organic change: building on existing customs and traditions.
Give two examples when Conservatives have accepted change.
19th Century Disraeli - One Nationism - Disraeli accepted the need to look after the poor, he organised the clearing of slums and provided a sewarage system.
20th Century: Churchill and Macmillan acceptance of Welfare State - 1950s: Conservative acceptance of Welfare State, Harold Macmillan accepted the need to provide welfare to poorest in society, and built Council Houses.
The Conservative view of tradition and change is based upon Pragmatism, implying a flexible approach to politics: an understanding of what is best for people, what is acceptable to them and what will preserve a stable society. It is also a rejection of the politics of strongly held ideology and of a dogmatic approach to decision making.
Give a traditional Conservative view of change
Traditional Conservatives have tended to avoid adopting fixed principle and have opposed political movements based on such principles. Conservatism has thus been described as chameleon like in that it changes its appearance according to dominant political situation at any given time
In what way have the New Right moved away from Pragmatism
-The Neo-Liberal wing of the New Right has gone against these views as they did have a clear ideological position favouring principle over pragmatism, and were conviction politicians. The New Right had the fixed view that society would flourish if free from government regulation.
In what way have the New Right not moved away from Pragmatism
Defending A Type Of Tradition
-They place great emphasis on respect for traditional features of society and have embraced rational and abstract economic theories. Their reason for doing so could be seen as a desire to return to the traditional economic order.
Give an argument in favour of the view that The New Right has abandoned pragmatism/tradition
1- Adoption of Ideological Conviction not pragmatism - Paternalistic Conservatives believe that the New Right has abandoned beliefs in social stability and pragmatism in favour of pursuit of economic freedom based on Liberal Ideological Principle. It could be argued that New Right Leaders developed their philosophy around the ideological principles of free market economics, self reliance and a smaller role for the government. The attitude taken by the main proponent and conviction politician supports this.
Give a 2nd argument in favour of the view that The New Right has abandoned pragmatism/tradition
Belief in ideological views of Free Market - Many left wing critics view Neo-Liberal and Conservative policies of the New Right as a consistent attempt to impose fundamentalist free market policies on societies, undermining public services. Naomi Klein 'the shock doctrine' criticised the extreme nature of the monetarist policies carried out in the UK, USA and elsewhere
Give a 3rd argument in favour of the view that The New Right has abandoned pragmatism/tradition
Effect of economic policies on social stability - The Free Market increases social mobility and the destabilising nature of market libertarianism can be seen in the economic change on the structure of communities and traditional ways of life. The free market uproots communities reducing social cohesion and social stability. With the increasing rationalisation of working practices its harder to rely on comfortable certainties
Give an argument that The New Right has not abandoned pragmatism/tradition
New Right Thatcherism is a form of pragmatism - Change for many was not driven by ideology but the practical necessity of reviving a stagnating economy that most people regarded as needing reform. Since keynesian economics no longer appeared to be working, change was slower and more gradual than most people think, and there was no attempt to privatise health, education and postal sectors
Outline a Conservatives view of society as a form of Organic Collectivism
1- Organicism (Rejection of mechanistic view of Liberalism) - (through participation individuals become embedded in their community, which acquires a significance and status beyond the original abstract ties that govern association between autonomous individuals in Liberalism)
2- Collectivism ('Holistic view' and rejection of Liberal Atomism) - (we are not abstract individuals but defined by wider society)
HEGEL - Liberalism presented an idealistic theory of humanity, fundamentally at odds with the cultural and historical traditions of actual nations.
Outline 2 other features that make up a Conservative view of Society
1- Hierachy (A belief in natural inequality and rejection of social equality) - Hierachical views of society. Everyone has a fixed role to play in society- there is little social mobility (not meritocratic). Society works well and is stable when everyone knows their place- know your place and stick to it!
2- Key Social Institutions as bearers of authority - Social institutions can survive because they perform an important function and form part of a greater whole- Church, family, nation and morality. Nation = natural unit. Family = Origin of discipline. Property creates responsibility.
Outline the final other feature that makes up a Conservative view of Society
3- Bonds of tradition - Society is held together by common bonds of tradition, morality and customs. These common bonds help tie individuals together preventing evil human nature from surfacing. Moral and cultural pluralism threaten the fabric of this organic society whereas traditional morality preserves social order.
Outline the paternalistic Conservative view of society
The community is like a biological organism that must be protected from external and internal threats - It believes the state is a legitimate means of protecting established political arrangements and reconciling conflicted interests in society. It emphasises the need for traditional leadership, social cohesion and state intervention to produced managed capitalism.
Give the Neo-Liberal view & their impact on society
(Neo-Liberal) Free Market Economics - Critical of Keynesian economics (state intervention). The Free Market creates economic growth which produces stability. Belief in monetarism, strict control over the supply of money by reducing public spending. Supply side economics - A need to encourage entrepreuners. Anti-welfarism - Creates a culture of dependancy and damages individual initiative
Give the Neo-Conservative view & their impact on society
(Neo-Conservative) Strong Authority - Severe punishment for criminals as the best form of deterrence. Traditional Morality - moral pluralism and liberal social policy is viewed as undermining the cohesion of society. Importance of the family - tax benefits to married couples, opposition to homosexuality. Natural Patriotism- stresses the importance of patriotism as a way of binding society together.
Give six arguments in favour of the view that there is contradiction between Neo-Conservative and Neo-Liberal elements within the New Right.
Social stability - Uproots communities reducing social cohesion, hard to rely on comfortable certainties.
The Family - Stay at home Mother is unrealistic
Traditional Authority - Economic rationality fosters disrespect?
Organic Society - Conservatives are meant to be attached to customs and conventions.
National Sovereignty - Integration with the global economy rendered traditional concept of sovereignty redundant.
Betrayal of Conservatism.
Give two arguments against the view that there is a contradiction between the Neo-Liberal and Neo-Conservative elements of the New Right.
1. A consistent moral crusade - Right wing supporters view the New Right as a consistent attempt to deal with the failings of the Post War era.
2. The New Right was a form of pragmatism - Change for many was not driven by ideology but the practical necessity of reviving a stagnating economy that most people regarded as needing reform as Keynesian economics was not working.
Give 2 reasons why Conservatives support Authority
1- Based on necessity (Rejection of Liberal social contract) - Authority arises naturally out of necessity, the need for protection since people are selfish, irrational and have limited abilities etc. They reject the Liberal belief that authority arises out of a social contract and authority is imposed from above.
2- Provides guidance and support for dependant individuals - Importance of leadership and discipline providing guidance and support for those who lack experience, knowledge or education to act wisely in their own interests. It is important that correct leadership exists to perform this role properly. Strong authority enables society to be stable and function well, balanced by social obligations.
Give another reason why Conservatives support Authoity
3-Social Cohesion - Gives sense of belonging, who they are and what is expected of them. Sets boundaries for people to live their lives. Freedom impossible without authority.
Outline the "Authoritarian Conservative" view on Authority
(Extreme Authority) - Favour hierachy and authority as pillars of social order. Anything other then complete respect for authority was considered heretical
Outline the "Paternalistic Conservative" view on Authority
(State as a father figure) - Believed in the feudal notion of 'Noblesse Oblige' and the fatherly role of the state
Outline the "The New Right" view on Authority
(Free economy but Strong Authoratitive state) - Neo-Liberal free economy, lack of authority . Neo-Conservative strong state - Libertarian Conservatives can be seen to have a consistent view of authority, the key sites of authority are family/community organisations and other forms of organisation which allow for the decentralisation of power and preservation of local autonomy.
Outline in detail an Authoritarian Conservative view of authority
-favour hierachy and authority as pillars of social order
-In an attempt to defend the established structure of power and privilege and to control the process of modernisation these governments employ authoritarian measures to restrict the growth of pluralism and democracy. It limits civil freedoms, and can repress all of civil society
Outline in detail a Paternalistic Conservatives view of authority
Believed in the feudal notion of noblesse oblige and the fatherly role of the state, placing an equal stress on the authoratitive nature of the state and on the need to help the poor. Tory Welfarism helped to preserve the position of social hierachy since, once aided by the welfare state, the poor no longer posed a threat to the social order.
Outline the New Right approch to authority
-Neo Liberal Free Economy (Lack of authority) - (the New Right consider the state as coercive and unfree, collectivism destroying individual initiative and self respect - believe that the individual and the market would flourish and favour a lack of constraints (negative freedom) by reducing the role of the state)
-Neo-Conservative Strong State (Social/Morality matters) - (Libertarian Conservatives can be seen to have a consistent view of authority - Liberal economics could act as a form of social discipline- threat of dismissal, redundancy and unemployment)
Outline 2 features of a Conservatives view of freedom
1- Rejection of Liberal view of Individual Freedom (freedom is not necessarily good, but it is good if it is kept under control and put to good use)
2-Freedom only worthwhile when ordered (liberty is only worthwhile when it is properly ordered. Individuals should be free from obstacles to pursue their goals only when their goals do not threaten the social order)
Outline a 3rd feature of a Conservative's view of freedom
3- Need for state restrictions (Without government restraints more people will do more things that endanger both themselves and social peace. Conservatives believe that in order to have any form of freedom the individual most needs a secure and stable society.)
Name and explain the Conservative political theorist of Freedom.
SCRUTON (The Meaning of Conservatism) - One major difference between Conservatism and Liberalism consists therefore in the fact that, for the Conservative, the value of individual liberty is not absolute, but stands subject to another higher value, the authority of established government.
Give 2 features of the Conservative state
1-Rejection of Liberal Social Contract (civil society is a sacred covenant that binds whole generations together as opposed to a socially constructed contract)
2-Inter-generational Conflict (Both governments and long standing customs and traditions are important. The power of government will restrain them which is rooted in the customs and traditions of the people.)
Give a 3rd feature of the Conservative state
3- Paternalism (belief that the state should act as a father figure governed by those who claim superior knowledge and judgement over those who are governed. Rulers believe they understand what is best for the people to a greater extent than the people themselves)
Give 2 features of what is meant when the New Right want to 'Roll back the state'
1- Neo-Liberal Assumptions (advocated reducing the states role in the economy and provision of welfare - based on CL assumptions which are enacted through economic individualism)
2- State intervention not needed (Committed to CL free market economics - "invisible hand" self regulates the market economy)
Give another 2 features of what is meant when the New Right want to 'Roll back the state'
3- State is less efficient provider (State = less efficient at allocating goods and services, as nationalised companies and public services are not run by the public profit motive)
4- Weakens Individual Initiative (welfare raises expectations of being entitled to state benefits creating a culture of dependency)
Give 2 reasons for the Neo-Conservative wing favouring an increased role of the state
1-Neo-Conservative assumptions (Neo-Conservative wing of the New Right advocates increasing the states role in the social sphere based on traditional Conservative assumptions - need for authority to maintain social stability)
2- Need for law and order (state should provide strong law and order to provide clear lines of authority and reinforce order)
Give a 3rd reason for the Neo-Conservative wing favouring an increased role of the state
3- Need for moral guidelines (state should provide moral guidelines for people to live by)
Give 2 reasons how and why Conservatives have justified property.
1- Provides Security (Private Property provides economic stability for the person, the family and the nation. Conservatives believe that thrift- caution in managing money, is a virtue in itself)
2- Encourages Conservative Values (Promotes important Conservative values of respect for law, authority and social order. Property owners are more likely to respect property of others and encourage respect for law and order, they have a stake in society)
Give a 3rd reason how and why Conservatives have justified property.
3- Extension of Individual Personality (Possessions are not regarded as merely objects, valued because they are useful- but also relect something of the owners personality and character)
Explain a traditional Conservatives view of Property
Acceptance of Classical Liberal Free Market belief in absolute property Rights -
-Property is not an issue for the individual alone but is also of importance to society. This can be seen for example in the social bonds that cut accross generations. Much of it land, houses and works of art that have been passed down from earlier generations.
Explain a Libertarian New Right's view of Property
Libertarian Conservatives believe that property reflects merit: those who work hard and possess talent will and should acquire wealth. They view the defence of property rights as primary and unattached to what is good for society. This doctrine has an attraction for those Conservatives who regard the ability to accumulate wealth as an economic incentive.
Give a traditional Conservative's view of class
Traditional view of class - At first Conservatives were purely interested in the interests of the ruling class as they found their positions increasingly threatened by the masses.
i.e.BURKE - ruling class had great wealth and no need to toil for a living so could therefore govern the country in a disinterested way
Give a Paternalistic view of class
Paternalistic view of class
-principle that responsibility comes with power and this became known as the term 'noblesse oblige'. They accepted popular democracy and that the authority to govern had to be earned by election.
Explain 2 features of paternalistic Conservatism.
1- Paternalistic (Fatherly) view of the role of the state - (elitest approach where the elite knew what was best for the rest of the nation. The nation/state should act as a Father figure installing discipline but also there was a need for the state to look after the least fortunate based on the feudal notion of noblesse oblige and the need to prevent social conflict)
2- Pragmatism (belief that you shouldnt have any fixed ideological principles, policy should be based on what works at the time. Paternalistic Conservatives advocated both state ownership and privatisation at different times.)
Explain another 2 features of paternalistic Conservatism.
3- Management of the economy - Economic management favoured over the free market (Free Market economics damages society undermining tradition and social stability)
4- Cautious gradualism (Any changes must be limited and gradual to ensure that social stability is maintained and vested interests are not upset)
Explain 2 more features of paternalistic Conservatism
5- Duty and obligation (Wealth and privilege brought with them social obligations - wealthy and powerful must shoulder the burden of social responsibility - the price of privilege. Noblesse Oblige - Based on this feudal principle)
6- Prevention of social conflict (growing industrialisation and economic inequality presented the danger of Britain becoming two nations, rich and poor. Social inequality contains the seeds of revolution and reform would be in the interests of the rich as it would maintain the status quo)
Explain the limits to Paternalistic Conservatism
Purpose of paternalistic Conservatism is to consolidate hierachy rather than to remove it, and its wish to improve the conditions of the less well off is limited to the desire to ensure that the poor no longer pose a threat to the social order.
Give an example of Paternalistic Conservatism in action
One Nationism - With the extension of democracy they could no longer appear to represent the interests of the upper classes, their views were simply no longer viable.
LIBERTARIAN CONSERVATISM (THE NEW RIGHT) - Give the economic background of the 1970's
New Right must be understood as a 'hybrid' ideological development formed by a combination of two sets of apparently contradictory ideas, which are limited to specific spheres of politics. Neo-Liberalism/ classical Liberals within the economic sphere. Neo-Conservatism- traditional Conservative views within social sphere.
LIBERTARIAN CONSERVATISM (THE NEW RIGHT) - Explain how the free market acts against keynesian economics.
The free market creates economic growth which produces stability. The free market is regarded as an instrument of social discipline and authority within the economic sphere, thus it doesn't need State Intervention due to the self-regulating "invisible hand"
Explain New Right belief in monetarism and supply side economics
Monetarism - Strict control over the supply of money in the economy by reducing public spending by the government. Inflation = The main evil, not employment.
Supply side economics - There is a need to encourage entrepreuners by giving them incentives to create wealth thus increasing the supply of goods in society. Privatisation= inherently insufficient as there is a need to roll back the state and encourage private industry.
Explain the New Rights Anti-welfarism policy
(Need to 'roll back the state') - Creates culture of dependancy and damages individual initiative
THATCHER "been through a period where too many people understand if they have a problem, its the government's job to cope with it'."
Explain three features of a Neo-Conservative's social policy
1- Strong Law and Order (strong state authority - Strong law and order were favoured seeing severe punishment for criminals as the best form of deterrance.)
2- Strong morality (returning to traditional morality such as self reliance, religion and family values or society was in danger of becoming decadent and corrupt.)
3- Strong nationalism (stresses the importance of national patriotism as a way of binding society together - nation is seen as under internal & external threats)
Explain in detail the two key thinkers of Neo-Conservatism.
MURRAY: Culture of dependency (increased numbers of young healthy low income people chose not to take jobs but instead turn to crime/lone families)
ROBERTSON: "The Moral Majority (Organisation made up of Christian political action committees upholding its Christian conception of the moral law)
Outline the 9 major differences between the New Right and Traditional Conservatives.
State - Minimal State VS. Strong State
Human Nature - Self Reliant VS. Limited
Ideological Base - Classical Liberalism VS. Traditional Conservatism
View of Society - Atomistic VS. Organic
View of tradition, change and stability - Radical change based on ideological principles VS. Support for traditional Values and Institutions, fear of change.
Equality - Meritocracy (self interest and enterprise) VS. Natural Hierachy
Freedom and authority - Negative Liberty VS. Authoritarianism
Nationalism - Internationalism (Globalisation) VS. Nationalism Anti Globalisation and international Co-operation
Guiding aim - Economic Freedom VS. Social Stability
Outline the different views of the State in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Minimal State - State intervention is not needed. A commitment to classical free economics, no need for state to interfere in the economy
TC- Strong state - The power of government will preserve long standing traditions and customs and will act as a father figure. 'Prison works' etc.
Outline the different views of "Human Nature" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Self Reliant - To the extent that society exists it is fashioned purely out of self interested and largely self reliant individuals
TC- Limited (Not self reliant) - The state should act as a father figure installing discipline based on feudal notion of 'Noblesse Oblige'.
Outline the different views of the "Ideological Base" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Classical Liberalism - Utilitarianism believes that individuals are motivated purely by self interest and believe the free market creates economic growth and stability
TC- Traditional Conservatism - Adopted a paternalistic and welfarist approach and believed it was the duty of the upper classes to give moral leadership to society.
Outline the different views of the "View of Society" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Atomistic - Society is nothing more than a collection of individual units or atoms.
TC- Organic - Society is organic and shaped by necessity; Communities acquire a significance and status beyond abstract autonomy.
Outline the different views of the "View of Tradition, Change & Stability" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Radical Change based on ideological principles - Right wing supporters view the New Right as a consistent attempt to deal with the failings of the Post War Era. A 'moral crusade
TC- Support for traditional values and institutions, fear of Change - Tradition is a natural law.
Outline the different views of "Equality" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Meritocracy self interest and enterprise - Supply side economics: there is a need to encourage entrepreuners by giving them incentives to create wealth
TC- Natural Hierachy - Conservatives reject any form of social hierachy claiming equality is impossible since power status, responsibility are unequally distributed.
Outline the different views of "Freedom & Authority" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Negative Liberty; Freedom from any external restraints - Anti-welfarism and favoured minimal government interventionism through rolling back the state
TC- Authoritarianism - Authority is based on natural necessity and arises from the need to protect people as they are selfish, irrational and limited etc
Outline the different views of "Nationalism" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Internationalism Globalisation - The practicalities of globalisation mean that acceptance of the IMF and WMF and EU led to more free economics
TC- Nationalism: Anti Globalisation and international co-operation - Conservatives seek to defend an indivisible concept of sovereignty, integration has however rendered this redundant.
Outline the different views of the "Guiding Aim" in terms of the New Right & Traditional Conservatives
NR- Economic Freedom - Free Market Economics is critical of keynesian economics. Free Market creates stability
TC-Social stability - With the increasing rationalisation of working practices it is harder to rely on comfortable certainties.
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