Friday, 8 January 2016

The Five Types of Modern Liberals

When we think of modern Liberalism we can often think of them as one common "blob", all alike with nothing to distinguish between them. But that is of course not true. I often read on blogs, particularly but not exclusively American ones, Liberals being referred to as Communists and while it is true they share things in common the two ideologies are quite different. (Liberalism, Why We are not Liberals) (Communism, Why We are not Communists)

The five types of modern Liberalism are:

Classical Liberalism

Feminism

Left Liberalism, AKA Social Liberalism, AKA Wets

Right Liberalism, AKA Economic Liberalism, AKA Dries

Neo-Conservatism

The oldest of these is of course Classical Liberalism, in the 1800's Classical Liberalism was simply Liberalism. It looked like this:

Politically: Liberal

(Free speech, freedom of association, etc.)

Economically: Liberal

(Free Trade, free movement of labour, free movement of money)

Socially: Conservative

(The individual is important but the family is still the bedrock of society)

But from the 1880's Socialism began to have a profound influence upon Liberalism and from around 1900 Liberalism changed, many in it's economic ideas. It looked like this:

Politically: Liberal

(Free speech, freedom of association, etc.)

Economically: Socialist

(Government intervention in the economy, the welfare state)

Socially: Conservative

(The individual is important but the family is still the bedrock of society)

Then in the 1950's the contradictions within Liberalism became too great and it split at first in half and then in the 1960's it produced another splinter.

It split into Left Liberalism, Right Liberalism and then in the 1960's Neo-Conservatism.

The fifth branch of modern Liberalism is Feminism. It's history goes back to the 1840's, there were Feminist thinkers and writings before then but there was no movement. Only from the 1840's can Feminism be regarded as a movement. It's history with Liberalism was complex, Liberalism gave Feminism more support then it received from any other Political Philosophy. But it also turned it's back on Feminism for decades at a time and during these times Feminism was no more than a crackpot philosophy, even to Liberals.

Since the 1950's each branch of Liberalism has it's own beliefs and it's own spectrum of the ideas of Liberalism.

Classical Liberalism

It has remained more or less as it was, but has become an ever smaller branch of Liberalism. Most Classical Liberals took to calling themselves Conservatives, they are not.

Politically: Liberal

(Free speech, freedom of association, etc.)

Economically: Liberal

(Free Trade, free movement of labour, free movement of money)

Socially: Conservative

(The individual is important but the family is still the bedrock of society)

Right Liberalism

Here was were Classical Liberalism broke apart as they rejected Socialism and wanted to return to Liberal economics. Economics is supreme, trumping both politics and society. They are also known as Dries, because all they were interested in was dry economics

Politically: Liberal

(Free speech, freedom of association, etc.)

Economically: Liberal

(Free Trade, free movement of labour, free movement of money)

Socially: Mixed

(Some are Conservative, but sadly most reject even the concept of Society)

Left Liberalism

The majority of Liberalism turned left, it did not reject Socialism or Communism. It instead believed that it could absorbed them and turn them Liberal. It succeed up to a point, it did turn Socialists and Communists into Liberals. But it didn't seem to notice, or mind, that it become influenced by both philosophies. Politically it started Liberal and moved towards a more Socialist model. This is most obvious when it comes to speech. It started by trying to be as open about free speech as possible. Free speech was the greatest of rights, it was what distinguished the Western free world from the Communist unfree world. But over the last 50 years that has died and at each stage it has been taken overby political correctness. 

 Politically: Liberal/Socialist/ Identity Politics 

(Over time it moved from one to the other)

Economically: Socialist

((Government intervention in the economy, the welfare state)

Socially: Radical

(Society exists for the benefit of the individual, multiculturalism, mass immigration)

Neo-Conservatism

The idea of a new Neo Conservatism is simply silly, if your neo you cannot be a Conservative. Neo-Conservatives believe that they were loyal Liberals who got left behind by Left-Liberalism. They continue to believe that Liberalism is a moral force and that war can spread the benefits of Liberalism because people want freedom more than life, in their opinion a life without freedom is not life.

Politically: Liberal

(Free speech, freedom of association, etc.)

Economically: Liberal

(Free Trade, free movement of labour, free movement of money)

Socially: Conservative/Mixed

(The individual is important but the family is still the bedrock of society, although some deny that society exists)

Feminism

Feminism is such a mixed bag, for nearly every issue you can find Feminists who oppose each other, pro and anti pornography for example. As a general rule Feminism is Liberalism as applied to women. Most Feminists are of a Socialist bend, but we should never forget that Feminism quietly in the background supports Right-Liberalism as well. The Corporate world is a big a supporter of jobs for the girls just as much as the Governmet and the NGO sector.

Politically: Socialist/Liberal

(More Socialist than Liberal)

Economically: Socialist/Liberal

(More Socialist than Liberal)

Socially: Radical

(What is good for Feminist women and the broad Left, it changes on which is more important women or the Left.)

Many people will tell you that Libertarians are Liberals, but Libertarians are Anarchists who support business. I do not think that Anarchists are Liberals. Although if Liberalism was to create the society they wanted only Libertarians and Anarchists would be around.

It is important to be able to tell the difference between the different types of Liberals that we see. I hope this helps!

Upon Hope Blog - A Traditional Conservative Future
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Feminists Versus Women


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