To what extent does the contemporary Conservative Party promote traditional conservative values? (30 marks)

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  • To what extent does the contemporary Conservative Party promote traditional conservative values? (30 marks)
    • traditional conservative values 
      • The acceptance of human imperfection and inequality 
      • A commitment to tradition and established national institutions 
      • Strong support for hierarchies, authority and order 
      • A belief in the private ownership of property 
      • Preference for pragmatism over ideology 
      • As a philosophy, it's a reaction against ideological tendencies
        • Conservatives view them as:
          • threatening the order and unity of society 
            • these are seen as being based on false assumptions and principles
    • recent decades 
      • new consensus has emerged in the UK 
        • based on neo-liberal and neo-conservative principles 
          • Most of the neo-conservative beliefs and values are firmly rooted in the conservative tradition 
            • these have been adapted to meet the needs and requirements of the day 
          • Influences of neo-LIBERALISM
            • neo-liberalism owes more to classical liberalism than it does to traditional conservatism 
              • its influence was strongest during Thatcher’s time in government in the 1980s 
                • The Conservative Party then, and indeed for much of the post-Thatcher era 
                  • resisted over-government and over-regulation 
                  • saw social disorder as largely the responsibility of individuals rather than being attributable to the circumstances in which people lived 
                  • Economy wise
                    • economic policies influenced by supply-side theories and monetarism 
                  • social policy intended to reduce the influence of the ‘nanny state’ on individuals in the quest to achieve responsible enterprise cultures 
            • preference for power to be reserved for individual states and not supra-national organisations (although this could also be interpreted as a traditional conservative view) 
        • influence of neo-conservatism on the contemporary Conservative Party 
          • links between traditional positions on morality and lifestyles and social policy and law-and-order policies 
            • David Cameron
              • opposing house of lords and electoral reform
              • reduction of the top rate of income tax
              • public sector cuts
              • pushing for free school
              • also plenty of traditional ideas in his manifestos
                • marriage tax allowance
          • how views on patriotism and national sovereignty have influenced defence and foreign policies as well as recent and current policies on immigration 
            • David Cameron's proposal in his manifesto
              • referendum over changes to European treaties
          • post-Thatcher Conservative Party from 1990 to 2005 
    • extent to which traditional views have impacted upon policies and programmes in the Conservative-Party-dominated coalition government 
      • 2010 Conservative Party manifesto contained proposals that were influenced by both neo-conservatism and neo-liberalism 
        • reality of power-sharing, however, has been compromised on many policies 
          • disgruntled Conservative Party members and commentators have accused their own party of betraying core conservative values and principles 
            • Criticisms 
              • the softening of policies on law and order and immigration 
              • failure to abolish inheritance tax 
              • the repatriation of powers from the European Union 
                • alongside the uncertain future for the Trident defence programme and strategy 
              • Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013
              • House of Lords reform  
              • responses to the 2011 summer riots 


Pete Langley - Get Revising founder


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