Professor: Doan Mai Linh
16th April, 2013
Title: Compare and contrast
British conservatism with American conservatism
‘Conservatism’ is a political term referring to the idea of upholds traditions and it refers to those who preferred the stability in society, emphasized the organization founded more than the next ideas generations. There are several main political thinkers to demonstrate this idea, like: Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), Edmund Burke (1729-1797), Friedrich von Hayek (1899-1992) and Robert Nozick (1938-2002). Clearly, people who believe in this philosophy would like to change slowly with sudden change of the development more than others in the world. Similarly, ‘Conservative’ depicted a way of life and action that is commonly refused to changes by people who advocated the idea of ‘conservatism’. There is no doubt that the British (Great Britain) and the American (the US) are two typical examples for the ‘conservatism’ philosophy. Great Britain is a state that has a thousand years of tradition. Even now, while other states are trying to pursue the idea of globalization of the world, Great Britain would still prefer traditional more than changes. In another word, we could say that Great Britain is one of Europe’s oldest aristocracy which very serious about supporting, keeping and protecting their traditions. In contrast, the American conservative is also known as the ‘New Right’. Although they are conservative but would prefer to leave everything in the hands of the free-market. Hence, British and American acquired same idea but they developed it in difference directions. Essentially, Great Britain follow traditional conservatism and the United States follow the New Right. 'Traditional conservatism' is an ideology, a way of life supported the existence of a strong tradition, the conservatives are often afraid of and refuses any change, while the followers of 'New Right' believe in strong state structure exists when limiting powers of the state in the economy. As mentioned above, there has always existed a wide range of differences between British conservatism with the American conservatism, with the opposition to each other. The highlighted question that people need to be considered is what is the specific difference between two variants, amongst numerous issues? This paper attempts to clarify both British and American thought about conservatism and how it affects their political, economic and social policies.
In term of definition, ‘conservatism defined by the desire to conserve, reflected in a resistance to, or at least a suspicion of change’. ‘Conservative thought has varied considerably as it has adapted itself to existing traditions and national cultures. UK conservatism, for instance, has drawn heavily on the ideas of Burke, who advocated not blind resistance to change, but rather a prudent willingness to ‘change in order to conserve’. On the other hand, the United States relatively less affected by traditional conservatism idea. U.S. State System and its political culture reflect deeply liberal and progressive values, politicians of both major parties – the Republicans and the Democrats – have traditionally opposed flagged as 'conservative'. The name Whig Party has been used in Revolution to propose ‘conservative’ idea in 1830. As conservatism idea, there are five core themes that control this idea: (i) Tradition, (ii) Human imperfection (iii) Organic society (iv) Hierarchy and Authority (v) Property In fact, politics it’s not something has existed seen the beginning of time. It formed with the development of mankind that comes with political and economic forms. They inherit and develop the theory over time. Politics have appeared early in human's development of civilization and national politics and a long-term science. For example, Great Britain in Europe, China and Japan in Asia are three countries that have a long-line of traditions and history. Mainly,...