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Conservatism, as a political attitude, is defined by the desire to conserve and is
reflected in a resistance to, or at least suspicion of, change. It grew in reaction to
growing pace of political, social and economic change symbolized by the French

British conservatism drew heavily on the…

Page 2

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Human beings, by their very nature, are incapable of perfection.
Any attempt to perfect human beings, their social arrangements or their
social institutions is bound to end in dismal failure and at worst could result in
gross abuses of individual liberty.
The imperfectability is central to conservative thinking. Humans are…

Page 3

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Authority develops naturally, rather than through a contract in liberalism.
Inequality is essential for the maintenance of society, functional as each class
performs own essential functions contributing to society.
Strong state upholding public order and punishment.
The government should not be too strong and should remain limited to the

Page 4

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Revolution or even reform would weaken these bonds, fragmenting order and
leading to a concomitant reduction in stability. Even despotic rulers should
always be obeyed because even the smallest of challenges to authority was
Authoritarian conservatism persisted in opposition to liberalism, nationalism
and socialism for much of the 19th…

Page 5

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As a political philosophy, one-nation reflects the belief that societies exist and
develop organically, and that members within them have obligations. There is
particular emphasis on the paternalistic obligation of the upper classes to
those classes below them, known as noblesse oblige.
Stark contrast to extreme individualism of liberal thinking.…

Page 6

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During the 1950s, paternalism and interventionism dominated conservatism.
Increasing extension of state into social/economic life.
Christian Democratic parties in W Europe adopted interventionist policies
after the war, and this dominated for most of post-war period.

Conservatism has been informed by
ideas of classical liberalism,
specifically in the field of…

Page 7

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Pragmatism Principle
Traditionalism Radicalism
Social duty Egoism
Organic society Atomistic individualism
Hierarchy Meritocracy
Social responsibility Individual responsibility
Natural order Market order
`Middle way' economics Laissez-faire economics
Qualified welfarism Anti-welfarism

From 1945 onwards, paternalism was the dominant strand in conservative
Authoritarian conservatism of the type seen under…

Page 8

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Classical liberalism Traditional conservatism
Atomism Organicism
Radicalism Traditionalism
Libertarianism Authoritarianism
Economic dynamism Social order
Self-interest/enterprise Traditional values
Equality of opportunity Natural hierarchy
Minimal state Strong state
Internationalism Insular nationalism
Pro-globalisation Anti-globalisation

The liberal aspects of NR thinking are drawn from classical liberalism.
Neoliberalism restates the case for a strong…

Page 9

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Neoconservatives call for economic freedom alongside the restoration of
authority and social life.
Gamble (1988) calls this an attachment to the free economy and strong
state. Neoconservatism is, in essence, a reaction against the social liberalism
of the permissive society. It does not allow, for example, the possibility of a…


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