Political Left and Right – It’s not your fault if you’re confused!
By David R. Young, Author of “THE POLITICAL SPECTRUM: Freedom vs. Enslavement”
The subject of the political left and right is so confused “attitudes” toward issues have become mixed up with actual political philosophies. The terms “liberal” and “conservative” are not political philosophies or systems of politics. Yet you hear conservatism and liberalism being used as if they define a person’s political views. This has gone so far that England has Conservative and Liberal Parties. These two words define “attitude toward” something, whether political, business, health care, etc.
Conservatism indicates a reluctance to change. A conservative person is generally content with how things are, how things are done and sees no reason to change. There could be a conservative Communist, a conservative Socialist, Democrat, etc. To say conservatism is the political right doesn’t say much at all.
Liberal means open to new ideas. The person may be happy with how things are, but still listens to other’s viewpoints and suggestions. The artist, usually looking for new ideas to express in his art, often has a liberal attitude. But realize there can be a liberal communist, socialist, democrat or republican. It would surmise his attitude toward the political thought of the day.
In a more political vain, “liberal” by definition means favorable to individual rights and freedoms. Look it up in the dictionary. This is its original political definition. Perhaps many who call themselves liberal feel this defines their attitude toward government and society. Wouldn’t that be more political right then conservatism?
Liberal and Conservative attitudes are in fact related to increasing or inhibiting freedom of individual choice and action.
There is another attitude which has never really been named. Since this attitude falls under the heading of “change”, “liberal” often gets assigned, mistakenly. Obviously, not all change proposed or enacted leads toward more personal freedom.
What of a scenario, where proposed changes in government inhibits freedom of choice and results in enforced dependence on government? That’s not conservatism or liberalism. For lack of another word lets call it Dependentism.
Dependentism is the apparent attitude of a person who feels individuals should contribute their efforts for the sole purpose of providing for the society and then themselves be dependent on society for their wherewithal. This more accurately describes the attitude of the Political Left.
Liberalism, conservatism and dependentism give a full range of attitudes toward individual-social interaction. Without this third attitude being properly named, dependentism is often mistakenly called liberalism. Since dependentism is contrary to the definition of “liberal”, it becomes a misnomer and confuses the issues when it is called liberalism.
How do these terms relate to the political spectrum? All three of these attitudes exist in any political setting. In a republic those with a dependent attitude strive to move society toward Socialism. Those with conservative attitudes would strive to maintain the Republic and those with more liberal attitudes would be acting to gain more freedoms for those who may be experiencing injustices.
This article may upset the current vernacular used in day to day discussion of the Left and Right. But it goes far in properly describing the attitudes of people and what they stand for. But why is this important?
These attitudes are not substitutes for the actual political systems being supported.
A person who promotes Socialism and call his actions Liberalism is hiding under a false label. There is nothing liberal about Socialism. Thus confusion is generated around politics. When a person is confused, he doesn’t act. If politics can be made a confused mess with false information and incorrectly defined words, people begin to close there eyes to the subject and leave it to the “experts”. And isn’t that the state we find our country in?
Truthfully, most people have such little understanding of the various political systems, they really don’t know what they stand for. In The Political Spectrum: Freedom vs. Enslavement very clear and concise descriptions of each political system are given. You will no longer have confusion on politics and will know what political system you should support based on your own determination, not on what someone else tells you.