Almost all Conservative core themes are linked to aspects of preservation, and tradition, of order and stability. It must be noted that Conservatives do not necessarily avert themselves from freedom, but merely have freedom lower on their agenda as opposed to the preservation of stability and order. Even John Stuart Mill, a core thinker of liberalism and especially utilitarianism, stressed the importance of order and stability: “A party of order and stability, and a party of progress and reform, are both necessary elements of a healthy state of political life”. 1.
Although obviously Conservatives would agree more with the first part rather than progress and reform which conservatives believe to be regressive. Tradition is an important aspect and theme in conservatism. Since they believe in defending values passed on to us from the past, they support defending values and practices such as law and order and keeping stability, rather than freedom which links to reform, change, and progress which is surely un-traditional. Furthermore conservatives believe in Human Imperfection, namely the natural inequality which exists in society.
Therefore conservatives recognize this natural progressing order and seek to maintain it (viz through stability). In addition to this conservatives acknowledge society to be Organic, meaning that humans live in a society wherby everyone and everything is interdependent. Since humans are naturally insecure and need some sense of security, such as roots in society, it is imperative that the conservatives therefore retain this by keeping stability in society and providing humans in this society with a certain order.
Perhaps the most important aspect of conservative themes is hierarchy and order, which can be sufficiently linked with the question posed. Conservatives believe that order provides a certain guidance and leadership in society, thus people in a society have a sense of belonging derived by this natural hierarchy; which, society provides and thus conservatives aim to preserve! Conservatives believe that principles such as, rights, equality, social justice, civil rights, civil liberties and especially freedom, are dangerous.
They are dangerous (according to the conservatives) because the next step to these principles are reform and remodeling, and thus they consider that derivatives of reform and remodeling, are the roots of revolution and social disobedience. Conservatives support this idea of retaining stability and order rather than freedom, by giving examples of the French and Russian revolution. The French and Russian revolution consisted utopian manifestos (i. e freedoms) which led to pain and suffering of society because not only didn’t they contain stability, but because there was a lack of order and hierarchy to enforce the well being of society.
Conservatives view society in a hierarchic order, and thus do not commit themselves to social equality, hence they favor preserving the hierarchical order and stability of society as opposed to freedom, which in their opinion diminishes it. As mentioned earlier conservatives believe in inequality within a society, and believe it to be natural (i. e Organic society). Therefore they believe that society needs leaders to keep stability and order, as opposed to enriching freedom which reduces the prospects of having leadership in society (i. e Hierarchy and order).
In addition to this conservatives don’t see inequality as a bad thing, they recognize the fact that inequality exists within a society for example those who are rich and those who are poor; but, believe that along with this inequality comes an inequality of responsibility respectively (i. e the rich help the poor). This is what the conservatives call meritocracy wherby those who have economic or social privileges also have the duty to help those who are less fortunate. In conclusion, it should not be overstated or misunderstood that conservatives are strictly against freedom.
The conservatives even believe that less government intervention (i. e freedom in business), leads to less regulation, which is a major disincentive for businesses. This is can be seen clearly in the USA with Bush’s strong conservative stance on law and order, yet support for economic freedom and deregulation. It is no wonder why American firms are the most competitive in the world market. However conservatives do see order and stability as an interpretation of strong control, and they believe that order is god given, and thus should be respected.
“no individual ‘rationalizers’ could possibly achieve so deem an understanding as the countless generation of the past”2 This quote seems appropriate to interpret conservative thought on how tradition and authority is imperative to keep stability and order, and not freedom which seems to make people ignorant in thinking that they can compete with the countless thinkers of the past (i. e. philosophers, political thinkers etc. ) I was told that perhaps you measured my previous essay to be misrepresentative of the way and/or style that I talk.
I took this time therefore to prove to you (through this small note) that my writing style differs from my talking style for the reason that I feel easier expressive through typing and writing than through words Louis Skoutellas 7A.
Bibliography: Political Ideologies, Third Edition by Andrew Heywood – Palgrave Macmillan http://www. coursework. info http://www. cola. wright. edu http://www. thinkexist. com http://www. history. ucsb. edu http://www. learnv. ycdsb. edu. on. ca 1 A quote of John Stuart Mill found on the world wide web: www. thinkexist. com 2 Quoted from a Historical paper on conservatism found at www. history. ucsb. edu.