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The traditional ‘one nation’ conservatism’ is a term used in the political debate by the Conservative Party in the United Kingdom. This term signifies a political standpoint aspirated towards creating unity of the citizens in the nation. Additionally, the ‘one nation’ term aims at creating harmony between different classes, as well as between different interest groups. According to Micklethwait and Wooldridge (2004), the ‘one nation’ is a traditional term, which was used during the late Victorian era; however, it became unpopular in the midst of 1970s.
Due to some political changes, the old model started failing. It politically failed after the conservative politicians have lost in the general elections for about five consecutive decades. The one nation conservatism was mistaken to be challenging to the post-war period, thus the radical new governmental approach was seen to be necessary. The main values of the traditional ‘one nation’ is to promote harmony, welfare, maintain national community, and the idea is to promote tolerance to people of different lifestyles or cultures, as well as boost changes in the society.
One of the main values of the ‘one nation’ conservatism is primarily concerned with the harmony. It holds the strong conventional need of promoting welfare to the state, and supporting other important aspects, such as traditional moral values, in the nation. One of the welfares it aims to support is strong protection of property ownership. Moreover, it aims to promote welfare of the labourers in the working environment. This ensures that the life and health of people are protected in the working environment. However, policies have been changed, and the traditional party system has moved to the modern conservatism. Thus, the modern conservatism is more governmental. In the sectors, such as business, the modern Conservative Party is over the government. Their principle in business sector is that there should be a reduction in taxation. Its core principle, behind the reduced taxation, is the absolute fact that needs to be abolished.
Moreover, its value is to improve the welfare of military service personnel, as the army is of a great priority for the traditional Conservative Party. One of its main goals is to renew the military agreement, as well as strengthen the ties between the government and the armed forces. Nevertheless, the party is committed to promoting mental health. It addresses the issues of mental health before they arise, through making telephone follow-ups to veterans, as well as being personally engaged in carrying out operational supporting services. Seawright (2010) points out that the traditional Conservative Party pledged to promote greater awareness in programs that promote help in the armed forces.
Another main value of the ‘one nation’ conservatism is maintenance of the national community, whereby each citizen would be included through working together towards achieving the national goals. The sense of national community is common, and the importance of maintaining confidence is taken into consideration, thus it is promoting a shared common value for all citizens. The party ensures that a sense of direction and common values are achieved in the nation. The party draws deep into the British tradition of protecting personal freedom of the people in the nation. This is achieved through an intrusiveness of the state. However, it emphasizes the significance of the governmental institutions that would help the state in achieving its goals.
Additionally, the sense of community is sustained through the material factors. The notion behind the traditional ‘one nation’ conservatism ensures provision of high quality services to the public; it also ensures that wealth is distributed equally, as well as opportunities are provided without segregation. This traditional conservatism has both social and political points. From a social point, it aims at avoiding alienation and exclusion. This is done even though the social groups lose faith in the constitutional and political arena. On the political point of view, the ‘one nation’ conservatism enables its party members to build a wide range of coalition support rather than withdraw its ideological and geographical core. Walsha (2003) points out that One Nation Conservatism provided a mixture of social betterment with a nationalistic appeal.
One Nation is a unique traditional party, which focuses more on social values. It applies conservative rules in directing what the state is required and not required to do. It tackles many challenges facing the party outside its comfort zones. However, the party was frustrated during 1950s when the post-war social issues led to several challenges within the Conservative Party. In the recent years, some of the conservative leaders felt that the social policy concerned more on labour issues, thus abandoning the responsibilities of the party. This led to the party abandoning political issues; in turn, this led to its fall (Will, 2008).
The idea behind the ‘one nation’ conservatism is speaking to idealism in politics. It lays emphasis on the economic, as well as political, realities. It aims at ensuring that the society achieves better goals and improvement. Thus, it ensures that the society achieves development and changes, and they are successfully achieved. It is firmly grounded on realities, especially those of human nature. However, One Nation viewpoints are more optimistic, and they provide contemporary realities, which are more desirable in the traditional setting. These realities aim at securing reforms, and promoting improvement in the society. Thus the political realities emphasized by the party aims towards achieving developmental goals of the society.
Another similar approach of the One Nation is focusing on foreign affairs. It has a patriotism sense and is cautious of theorizing in the global nations. The party rejects utopianism and pessimism in the society. Thus, it generally presents a challenge, as well as an opportunity for the nation. In foreign affairs, the One Nation ensures that understanding of foreign policy is promoted throughout the world. They ensure that the national interests are achieved. This is through employing strategic approaches, which enable nations to interact with each other. They design foreign policies through using a high level of decision processes in order to promote the interests of the nation. This is achieved through ensuring that peaceful cooperation of nations is achieved.
The ‘one nation’ conservatism value tradition because they begin their search through focusing on the future by considering the way the past can be preserved. They engage in their search through ensuring what can be achieved. This conservatism is easy with the nation they are seeking to administer. They seek to create improvements through working internally, thus mobilizing the nation and strengthening it. Moreover, the ‘one nation’ conservatism is not an asset of specific policy recommendations; it is more than a frame of mind. Various detailed explanations studding this conservatism have been disputed over time. Different particular points and themes have frequently been evolved.
One of the themes is that the traditional conservatism cannot contain any forms of libertarianism. This is because this conservatism is often critical, as well as distrustful to the happiness of the state. It can be distrustful especially when it does not meet the expectations, or does not benefit the society. Another theme is inadequacy of freedom. Even though this is a significant part of the main values of the ‘one nation’, the community and beliefs in public services are emphasized. Volgy, Imwalle, and Schwarz (2000) point out that the one nation emphasizes on the pluralistic, as well as the welfare approach to the society, in which the autonomous institutions and the voluntary zone participate in the central roles.
The other value of the ‘one nation’ conservatism is putting emphasis on the spread of economic opportunities. An economic opportunity is one of the fundamental values of this conservatism. Thus, the conservative governmental leaders emphasize on the education reforms, as one of the successive leading steps that contribute to the successful economies. For instance, during the inter-war period, the conservative leaders ensured that everyone in the capitalist economy started from below and had a possibility to climb the economic ladder successfully. However, due to post-war breakdown, the ‘one nation’ lost its central role in the political arena. This contributed to social consequences, especially mass unemployment, which affected many people in the society.
The party pledged to move from the strategic defence review to a more comprehensive strategic defence and security review, which encompasses both homeland, as well as defence related matters. In order to avoid the long gap in future, they have decided to hold regular defence reviews. This will create improvements in the strategic defence, as well as the security review; thus maintaining broad and supple capability for adapting to any altering threats. Moreover, the significant reviews of the procurement reform process are done in order to ensure successful delivery of services. For instance, Britain ensures that through fundamental procurement review processes, British can get the best possible equipment at the best price and time.
Building enhanced bilateral defence relations is another major value of the ‘one nation’ conservatism. This is done in order to achieve better security in the nation. The traditional conservatism built defence relations with the European partners. The Europeans believed that they will cooperate with the national interest of Britain. Thus, traditional conservatism pledge in ensuring that the European Union military capability would supplement the national defence. The ‘one union’ encourages all the European Union members to commit themselves to providing security within the country and abroad. The Conservative Party also requires the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to support a significant security alliance for the entire United Kingdom state (Seawright, 2010).
Education and health policies are the values behind the formation of the ‘one nation’ Conservative Party. The traditional conservatives pledged to reform education system, as well as review the national curriculum. The disciplined restoration and introduction of English, as well as banning of expelling students from school was highlighted in the education policy. Thus, the main value of the ‘one nation’ was to promote better and improved educational standards. On the other hand, in 1945, the health policy was declared by the ‘one nation’ conservatism. It supported the national healthcare. However, in the year 2010, they introduced health and Social Care Bill, upon which health care reforms would be undertaken.
Nevertheless, the traditional conservatism takes into consideration the climate change and the crime policies. In the climate change policy, the traditional conservative leaders, such as David Cameron, included various green issues in the forefront campaign of 2010. The proposals were designed in order to impose taxes on areas, such as car parking, gas guzzling, and a halt to the airport area. Concerning the crime policies, the traditional conservative leaders campaigned with conviction of implementing modern police force in order to protect citizens from crime offenders. The bills of rights were created in order to ensure better treatment of individuals. However, the bill of rights was voted by the coalition members of the liberal democrats. Thus, the case of capital punishment was supported by some conservatives within the social conservatism (Micklethwait, and Wooldridge, 2004).
The last policy, the main idea of the traditional conservatism, is the Union policy. The conservatives support the maintenance of the nation, and oppose the separation of the nations. Under the leadership of Margaret Thatcher and John Major, the traditional conservatisms strongly opposed decentralization. They campaigned against devolution during the 1997 referendum. Further decentralization powers were supported in the Welsh Assembly. For instance, in Northern Ireland the traditional conservatives suspended parliament, thus, awakening the increase troubles. The ‘one nation’ Conservative Party opposed the Labour Party in an attempt to devolve power to the Northern side of England.
Traditional conservatism is nothing but an ideological capitalism defence. This is because in the 1980s, some of the conservative leaders of Neo Liberalism and Thatcherism movements took defence on a free market. Moreover, the economic freedom became the defence capitalism during the late of 19th century especially in the 1980s (Will, 2008). The ‘one nation’ conservatives and the Christian democrats wanted to modify capitalism. However, they did not abolish it but rather defended it. Some of the core ideas had nothing to do with the capitalism. For instance, the traditional conservatism is concerned with more than just the capitalism defence. Thus, in the capitalism defence, the traditional conservatism provides original ideas that are more concerned about preserving the society. Therefore, the ‘one nation’ conservatism became a capitalism defence during the late19th century.
The traditional conservative ideas of a ‘one nation’ trick the poor into accepting the capitalist rule situation to the traditional conservatism. The notion of patriotism is another ideological defence trick that aims to win support from the working class. Thus, conservatism values capitalism more than anything else. Other conservatives have sought to modify the worst effects by helping the poor, who are being affected by the economic situation, thus promoting unity in the society. However, the traditional conservatisms have never sought to challenge the capitalism system. Walsha (2003) argues that the ideas of traditional conservatism on the capitalism defence are nothing but an attempt to preserve capitalism through ‘buying off’ the poor people. Hence, all the conservatives defend only the capitalism system in various ways.
Micklethwait and Wooldridge (2004) argue that all the traditional conservative ideas are a cloak for the interests of the capitalist class. Conservatives across the globe have differed in the capitalism defence issues that aim to support the capitalism, it is quite clear that a number of types of conservatisms, especially from Britain, have greatly and heavily supported the notion of capitalist class. However, many of them have been concerned with the subject issues, and some actually want to restrict the freedom of the capitalist class for labour exploitation. Thus, these groups are merely providing cloak ideas for solely supporting capitalism but they are not concerned about the economic issues. Moreover, the arguments for conservative ideas are not only for supporting the capitalism, but they also focus on significant areas. For instance, they focus on areas, such as the need for power, hierarchy, and tradition. Thus, some conservatives of the ‘one nation’ have been concerned in limiting the worst impacts of capitalism, and thus protecting people of lower class in the society.
The ideas of modern conservatisms are similar to the traditional conservatism. During the period of Margaret Thatcher, there was a development in the party for group in the traditional ‘one nation’ conservatism. This group opposed the harshness of the new rights, which were advocated to a return for a more caring conservatism. Thus, conservative leader, David Cameron, was chosen as the party leader of the modernized conservatism. Therefore, the modernized conservatism has got ideas similar to the traditional conservatisms of the ‘one nation’. One of the ideas of the traditional conservatism is that the party requires some changes. This can enable the party to adapt to a changing nation, which is very different from the one in the 1980s.
Another idea is that the traditional conservatism had to broaden their appeal to young people. It also broadens the appeals of other groups of people in the society not just to the middle or high class people but to the entire group. This is vital because it contributes to the better welfare of the society at large, without segregating the others. Moreover, the changes had to have inclusive meaning that they should embrace and accept the diversity, as well as the society differences. They should not tolerate the minorities and their lifestyles. This is crucial because it indicates a more liberal aspect of traditional conservatism (Volgy, Imwalle, and Schwarz, 2000).
The traditional conservatism had to be more tolerant to different lifestyles or cultures of people, thus allowing them to make their own decisions, but not to force them to anything. This idea made the traditional conservatism advocate liberalization in order to promote unity and harmony in the nation. Additionally, the traditional conservatism had to reveal the more caring side. It should not be harsh, especially to the groups of the poor or the ethnic minorities. This means that all people should be treated equally, and provided with the same support for the public services, thus promoting the welfare of the state.
Since the post-industrial revolution, major political changes have occurred in the United States. These changes include the breakdown of traditional political orientations, emergency of new social movements, and emergency of non-traditional forms of political actions. The government report, which was released in the CNN news, revealed that the United States power will decline in future. The U.S. leverage will be constrained even though it is likely to remain the powerful single actor. Thus, the international system will be unrecognizable owing to the increased emerging powers in the globalized economy. The world is in the midst of transforming wealth and power to East and West, thus the US’s power may decline in the near future. Moreover, the influence of the American powers is projected to decline, thus the powers will be transferred to the Middle East countries.
In conclusion, the main values of the traditional ‘one nation’ conservatism is to promote harmony, welfare, maintain national community, and their ideas is to promote tolerance to people of different lifestyles or cultures, as well as boost changes in the society. The traditional conservatism holds the strong conventional needs of promoting welfare to the state and traditional moral values in the nation. It maintains the national community, and the sense of community is sustained through the material factors. One Nation is a unique traditional party, which focuses more on social than political values. It lays emphasis on the spread of economic opportunities and foreign affairs, and emphasizes on some policies, which are vital in the society. Traditional conservatism is nothing but an ideological capitalism defence.
The ideas of the conservatism are a cloak for the interests of the capitalist class. The traditional conservatism had to be more tolerant to people of different lifestyles or cultures, thus allowing them to make their own decisions. The party requires some changes and it should include all the people, both the majority and the minority groups.
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