Unit 3 revision


UNIT 3 MARK SCHEMES

15 mark questions


  1. How, and why, has collectivism been associated with a wider role for the state?
  2. Why have liberals feared the concentration of political power?
  3. On what grounds have conservatives defended private property?
  4. What is the dictatorship of the proletariat, and why have Marxists thought it is necessary?
  5. Distinguish between the liberal New Right and the conservative New Right.
  6. Define individualism, and explain its importance within liberal ideology.
  7. How did Lenin’s theory of the party revise the ideas of Marx?
  8. Distinguish between a socialist and a conservative view of human nature.
  9. Why have some liberals warned against the dangers of democracy?
  10. Using examples, distinguish between negative freedom and positive freedom.
  11. Why did Marx believe that capitalism was doomed to collapse, and how would this occur?
  12. How, and why, have conservatives objected to social equality?
  13. How do modern liberals justify welfare and social reform?
  14. Why have socialist’s favoured cooperation over competition?
  15. Define individualism, and explain its implications for the state.
  16. Why have conservatives been concerned about moral and cultural diversity?
  17. On what grounds have liberals supported democracy?
  18. Explain the link between anarchism and collectivism.
  19. Why have democratic socialists believed in the ‘inevitability of gradualism’?
  20. To what extent do traditional conservatives and the New Right differ in their views of society?
  21. Why have anarchists viewed the state as inherently evil and oppressive?
  22. Why has socialism been viewed as a form of class politics?
  23. How have conservatives justified private property?
  24. Why and how have liberals supported the fragmentation of political power?
  25. On what grounds do anarchists believe in the possibility of a stateless society?
  26. Why did Marx believe that capitalism was doomed to collapse?
  27. Why has anarchism been linked to utopianism?
  28. Why do liberals fear concentrations of power?
  29. On what grounds have conservatives defended property?
  30. Explain how socialists have sought to advance collectivism.
  31. Why have some anarchists favoured capitalism?
  32. On what grounds have liberals defended constitutionalism?
  33. Explain the link between anarchism and individualism.
  34. On what grounds have conservatives supported One Nation principles?
  35. Distinguish between economic liberalism and social liberalism.
  36. Distinguish between neoliberalism and neoconservatism.
  37. How and why has anarchism been linked to communism?
  38. To what extent do liberals disagree over freedom?
  39. Distinguish between fundamentalist socialism and revisionist socialism.
  40. On what grounds have conservatives supported tradition and continuity?
  41. Explain the implications of the conservative belief in an ‘organic society’.
  42. Explain how neoliberals and neoconservatives disagree over the role of the state?
  43. Explain the key ideas associated with revisionist socialism.
  44. On what grounds have conservatives supported paternalism?
  45. Why did Marx believe that capitalism is doomed to collapse, & how did he think this collapse would occur?
  46. Why have some socialists advocated revolution rather than reform?
  47. On what grounds have conservatives defended authority?
  48. In what sense do socialists have a positive view of human nature?
  49. How does the anarchist view of the state differ from the Marxist view?
  50. On what grounds have socialists criticised the liberal view of equality?
  51. How is liberalism linked to rationalism, and what are the implications of this link?
  52. Why have conservatives feared moral and cultural diversity? 
  53. Why has the New Right advocated rolling back the state?’
  54. Why do conservatives believe that human nature is imperfect?
  55. Why do traditional conservatives and the New Right disagree in their view of the individual?
  56. Why do anarchists object to constitutionalism and consent?
  57. Why have anarchists believed that the state is unnecessary?
  58. Explain the link between anarchism and utopianism.
  59. Outline a liberal defence of toleration and pluralism
  60. What kind of equality do liberals support, and why?  
  61. Why do liberals emphasise the importance of constitutionalism and consent? 
  62. To what extent do classical liberals and modern liberals disagree about freedom?
  63. Why, and to what extent, have socialists favoured common ownership? 
  64. Why did Marx believe that the state would 'wither away'?
  65. Why did Marx believe that a proletarian revolution was inevitable?
  66. Why have socialists favoured cooperation over competition?

1.     Collectivism is the belief that collective human endeavour is morally & practically superior to individual self-striving. It reflects underlying beliefs about the social character of human nature. Collectivism has been associated with a wider role for the state because the state has often been seen as a mechanism through which collective action is organised. The state thus represents the wider public interest as opposed to the private interests of individual citizens. This has been reflected, for example, in modern liberal and socialist thought, where sympathy for collectivism has led to support for forms of economic & social intervention. Examples of this include support for the welfare state, the redistribution of wealth, nationalisation and economic management. In a more extreme way, collectivism has helped to fuel policies of comprehensive state control, such as the collectivisation of wealth within a centrally planned economy.


2.     Liberals have feared power (the ability to influence the behaviour of others) because of their belief that human beings are naturally self-seeking creatures. Egoism therefore encourages them to use other people to achieve their own ends. Power gives them the ability to do so, thus leading to corruption in the sense of a disregard for the interests of others & a willingness to use & (possibly) abuse them. Concentrations of power intensify this concern because the greater the power, the greater the scope for abusing others, & therefore the greater the corruption. Absolute power therefore corrupts absolutely (Acton). In the liberal view, dictators are necessarily tyrannical & oppressive. As a result, liberals favour constitutional & institutional devices that fragment or diffuse power. Examples include the separation of powers, federalism, parliamentary government, local government & so on.

3.   Private property is property that individuals have an exclusive legal entitlement to use however they choose. The traditional conservative defence of private property draws on one of three arguments. Property has been seen as a source of personal security in an inherently insecure world (property gives us ‘something to fall back on’). Property has been seen as an exteriorisation on one’s own personality, in the sense that people’s attachment to property (cars, houses, personal possessions) has a powerful psychological & emotional dimension. Property has also been valued as a means of strengthening social values and promoting order, as property owners are more inclined to respect the property of others and therefore more willing to obey and uphold the law. New Right conservatives have nevertheless embraced an essentially liberal view of property based on individual rights and economic incentives. In this view, the right to property is based on hard work or just transfer (inheritance). This view differs from the traditional conservative view in that it suggests that property is merely a right & never an obligation (for example, it does not entail duties towards the larger society or later generations – ‘the family silver’).

4.     The dictatorship of the proletariat is a transitionary phase between the overthrow of capitalism & the establishment of full communism. The dictatorship of the proletariat is characterised by the establishment of a temporary proletarian state in the place of the bourgeois or capitalist state that has been overthrown. For Marxists, states are a reflection of the class system, and the need for a temporary socialist state arose from the persistence of class antagonisms after the proletarian revolution. Dictatorship of the proletariat is therefore necessary in order to defend the gains of the revolution. This applies because the dispossessed bourgeoisie will not easily or peacefully be reconciled to socialism. The threat of counter-revolution has therefore to be countered, and this can only be done by the ‘armed proletariat’. The temporary proletarian state will also take responsibility for nationalising property, preparing the way for the establishment of common ownership in a fully communist society.

5.     A distinction is commonly drawn between the liberal New Right and the conservative New Right, sometimes referred to as neo-liberalism and neo-conservatism. This tension between the 2 runs deep in both ideological and philosophical terms. The liberal New Right derives from classical liberalism & reveres the twin principles of the market & individualism. It seeks to expand individual freedom (understood in strictly economic terms) & has a consistently atomistic view of society, based on a model of rugged individualism. It is defined by a desire to ‘roll back’ the state, underpinned by a faith in free market economics. The conservative New Right, on the other hand, derives from traditional conservatism, or, more particularly, from pre-Disraelian conservatism. It calls for a restoration of order & authority in society, for a strengthening of traditional values, & advances a defence of the nation. It is grounded in an essentially organic view of society, emphasises human imperfection (in its psychological, moral & intellectual senses), & is associated with the notion of a strong (but minimal) state. In answering this question, consider the following issues: Understanding of liberal New Right (AO1) • Understanding of conservative New Right (AO1) Analysis and evaluation of differences between the two (AO2)

6.     Individualism is a belief in the primacy or supreme importance of the human individual over any group or collective body. Methodological individualism suggests that all statements about society should be made in terms of the individuals who compose it. Ethical individualism implies that moral priority should be given to the rights, needs or interests of the individual. Individualism is a core principle, even the defining principle, of liberalism. Individualism underpins most liberal beliefs, including those in freedom, equality (foundational, formal & of opportunity), justice, toleration, limited government and democracy. Classical liberals have endorsed egoistical individualism, which places a heavy emphasis on self-interest and self-reliance, implying atomism & minimal government. Modern liberals have, by contrast, embraced developmental individualism, which stresses individuality & the ideas of personal growth and human flourishing. This notion has been used to support positive freedom and qualified interventionism. In answering this question, consider the following issues: Understanding of individualism (AO1) • Analysis of role & significance of individualism within liberalism (AO2) Awareness of different approaches to individualism within liberalism (AO2)

7.     Lenin’s theory of the party revised the ideas of Marx in important ways. Marx had implied that the downfall of capitalism would be brought about by a class conscious proletariat that had, as a result, little need for organisation and leadership – it would provide its own leadership. Lenin, on the other hand, argued that the impact of bourgeois ideology would prevent the proletariat from achieving revolutionary class consciousness (‘social democratic consciousness’) through their own efforts; they would only achieve ‘trade union consciousness’, an awareness of material deprivation that does not recognise that the source of economic inequality lies in the capitalist system itself. This gives rise to the need for a ‘vanguard of the proletariat’, a revolutionary party composed of the most class conscious elements in the proletariat (& progressive bourgeois elements) to lead & guide the proletarian class. The party was to be organised on the basis of democratic centralism. The party’s leadership role, in Leninist theory, aimed to bring the proletarian class to revolutionary class consciousness. In answering this question, consider the following issues: Understanding of Lenin’s theory of the party (AO1) • Understanding of Marx’s views on political organisation (AO1) Analysis of differences between Lenin’s views & Marx’s ideas (AO2)

8.     Socialists view human nature in broadly positive terms. In particular, they believe that there is a social core to human nature, inclining people to be cooperative, sociable & gregarious. This also, however, encourages them to stress nurture over nature, and to recognise the extent to which people's attributes & characters are shaped by the social environment. Socialists thus highlight the prospects for personal & social development, associating individual fulfilment with social solidarity & equality. Social democracy has nevertheless diluted this collectivist vision through a partial accommodation with individualism and the need, for example, for material incentives. Conservatism has, by contrast a broadly negative view of human nature. Human beings are psychologically imperfect in that they are limited & dependent creatures. They are morally imperfect in that they are ruled by base urges & non rational instincts, an assumption that reflects the conservative emphasis on nature over nurture. They are also intellectually imperfect in that human rationality cannot fathom the infinite complexities of society & the world in which we live. Neoliberal conservatives nevertheless stress that human beings are rationally self-interested creatures with a considerable capacity for self-reliance. In answering this question, consider the following issues: Understanding of a socialist view of human nature (AO1) • Understanding of a conservative view of human nature (AO1) Analysis and evaluation of differences between the two views (AO2)

9.     Liberals have warned against the dangers of democracy for a number of reasons. These include; 1st, democracy may clash with individualism. The central liberal concern has been that democracy can become the enemy of individual liberty. This arises from the fact that 'the people' are not a single entity but rather a collection of individuals and groups, possessing different opinions and opposing interests. 2nd, democracy may lead to a majoritarian tyranny. This happens because the 'democratic solution' to conflict is a recourse to the application of majority rule. Democracy thus comes down to rule by the 51 per cent, or the 'tyranny of the majority', threatening minority and individual rights. 3rd, this concern about majoritarianism has been heightened by the make-up of the majority in modern, industrial societies. As the majority consists of people with limited education and inadequate political wisdom, democracy can end up operating as a form of mob rule. Some liberals have therefore argued that the rights of the educated and propertied minority need to be protected from the untutored instincts of the masses. 4th, political democracy may conflict with economic efficiency. Classical liberals in particular have linked democracy to state intervention, arguing that although welfare and economic management may be electorally popular, they threaten to upset the vigour and balance of a market economy.

10.  Negative freedom refers to the absence of external restrictions or constraints on the individual, allowing freedom of choice. In this view, the principal threats to freedom arise through law and the use of force. Negative freedom is therefore upheld primarily through checks on government power, such a codified constitutions & bills of rights. Examples of negative freedom include civil liberties, such as freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, freedom of movement & freedom of religious worship. It is also evident in freedom from (excessive) taxation. Positive freedom refers to self-mastery or self-realisation, the achievement of autonomy & the development of human capacities. Instead of being 'left alone', the individual is able to develop skills & talents, broaden his or her understanding, and gain fulfilment. In this view, the principal constraints on freedom include poverty & social deprivation. Positive freedom is therefore often portrayed as freedom from the social evils that may cripple individual existence. Expressions of positive freedom can be found in freedom from ignorance (the right to education), disease (the right to health care) & want (the right to a social minimum.)
11. Marx believed that capitalism was doomed to collapse because it was based on a fundamental contradiction. This contradiction is rooted in the institution of private property, giving rise to a system of irreconcilable class conflict. Capitalism is therefore essentially a system of class exploitation, operating in the interests of the bourgeoisie, the owners of productive wealth. The property-less proletariat is systematically exploited through the extraction of what Marx called 'surplus value'. As the proletariat could not be reconciled with capitalism, Marx argued that the capitalist system was inevitably doomed. Marx believed that capitalism would be overthrown by a proletarian revolution. This would occur as the proletariat achieved class consciousness, becoming a class-for-itself rather than a class-in-itself. The proletariat would be brought to class consciousness by progressive immiseration, the product of the deepening & inevitable crises of the capitalist system. Revolution would therefore be a spontaneous act on the part of a class-conscious proletariat, providing its own leadership and guidance.

12.  Traditional conservatives have objected to social equality on the grounds that society is naturally hierarchical. Social equality is therefore undesirable and unachievable, as power, status and property are always unequally distributed. Hierarchy is an inevitable feature of an organic society, not merely a consequence of individual differences. Society is composed of a collection of different groups, bodies and institutions, each with its own role and purpose, just as the body is composed of a collection of different & 'unequal' organs. One Nation conservatives have further argued that the natural inequality of wealth & social position is justified by a corresponding inequality of social responsibilities, as the wealthy & prosperous have a social duty to look after the less well-off. The liberal New Right, however, has embraced an essentially liberal critique of social equality. This accepts the principle of equality of opportunity (an absurd idea for traditional conservatives), but stresses that individuals should be able to realise their unequal talents & capacity to work. Social equality is therefore rejected on the grounds that it is a form of 'levelling' that treats unalike people alike & damages the economy by removing incentives to work and enterprise.

13.  Modern liberals justify welfare & social reform in a number of ways, including the following:  The doctrine of positive freedom (understood as personal development & self-realisation) is linked to individual capacity, or ‘freedom to’. Welfare therefore promotes ‘freedom’ in that it safeguards citizens from the social evils that may cripple their existence – examples including poverty, disease and idleness. Welfare also promotes equal opportunities, by creating a ‘level playing field’ & compensating for the social & economic inequalities of the capitalist system. This ensures that differences between & amongst people reflect natural differences, not ones imposed by society. Rawls's theory of justice is based on the belief that inequalities of wealth are only justifiable if they work to the benefit of the least well-off. • Modern liberals have also argued that welfare provision is necessary for national efficiency – a healthy workforce & an effective army.
14. Socialists have supported cooperation by establishing producers’ & consumers’ cooperatives in place of competitive businesses, & by favouring collectivisation over the market. They have favoured cooperation over competition on both moral & economic grounds.  In moral terms, they have placed emphasis on the social basis of human nature. Human beings are thus intrinsically linked to one another through their common humanity. Cooperation therefore strengthens social bonds between & amongst people, while competition encourages us to be greedy and selfish, denying our true nature.  In economic terms cooperation has the advantage that it allows societies to harness their collective energies on a rational basis, often through a system of planning. Competition, by contrast, is inefficient because energy is wasted as people struggle against one another.

15.  Individualism is a belief in the primacy of the human individual over any social group or collective body. It implies that society should be understood as a collection of individuals (methodological individualism), &, in the form of egoistical individualism, it suggests that people are essentially self-seeking & largely self-reliant creatures. This view of individualism implies a clearly negative attitude to the state, which is viewed as an affront to individual liberty & a threat to ‘self-help’. Individualism, particularly in its egoistical sense, is linked to a belief in negative freedom, freedom from the state, as demonstrated by classical liberalism. Nevertheless, individualism is not always or necessarily anti-statist. Classical liberals believe that individual self-striving is the justifies the existence of a sovereign power, albeit one that has a minimal role. Moreover, developmental individualism, which is linked to a belief in personal self-development, has been used to justify qualified intervention. In this view, the state provides the conditions for human flourishing.

16.  Conservatives have been concerned about moral & cultural diversity because of their implications for the individual & for the health & stability of society. As individuals are psychologically dependent creatures, moral & cultural diversity creates a sense of rootlessness and insecurity, the absence of a stable social framework in which to live. This is also reflected in the organic structure of society, based as it is on a fragile balances between & amongst their various parts. The possibility of social breakdown & disorder is therefore ever present. A single culture & a shared morality are thus necessary for any successful & stable society. Conservatives therefore emphasise the importance of a shared national (and therefore cultural) identity as well as traditional or established values. Multiculturalism, based on value pluralism, therefore tends to lead towards conflict and weaken society. Permissive societies are also viewed as unstable & morally rootless.

17.  Liberals have defended democracy on a variety of grounds:  • Liberals have justified democracy on the grounds of consent, and the idea that citizens must have a means of protecting themselves from the encroachment of government. This is sometimes seen as protective democracy, and it, for example, allows tax-payers to protect their property by controlling the composition of the tax-making body – hence the principle of ‘no taxation without representation’. Utilitarians have also linked democracy to the ability of individuals to advance or defend their interests, meaning that political democracy promotes ‘the greatest happiness for the greatest number’. • Democracy has also been endorsed on the grounds that political participation has educational advantages. By participating in political life, citizens enhance their understanding, strengthen their sensibilities and achieve a higher level of personal development. This is sometimes called developmental democracy.  • A more modern liberal defence of democracy draws on pluralist ideas in arguing that democracy is the best means of maintaining equilibrium within complex and fluid modern societies. As democracy gives competing groups a political voice, it binds them to the political system and so maintains political stability.

18.  Collectivism is, broadly, the belief that collective human endeavour is of greater practical and moral value than individual self-striving. It reflects the idea that human nature has a social core, and implies that social groups, whether social classes, nations, races or whatever, are meaningful political entities. Collectivism has provided the basis for a particular school of anarchism, commonly called collectivist anarchism or social anarchism. This form of anarchism takes socialist collectivism to its logical extreme, and provides the basis for a belief in a stateless society.  • Collectivism has attracted anarchists because it stresses the human capacity for social solidarity, or what Kropotkin termed ‘mutual aid’. Human beings are, at heart, sociable, gregarious and co-operative creatures, the relationship between and amongst them being one of sympathy, affection and harmony. When people are linked together by the recognition of a common humanity, they have no need to be regulated or controlled by government. Not only is government unnecessary but, in replacing freedom with oppression, it also makes social solidarity impossible. Collectivism has influenced mutualism, anarcho-syndicalism and anarcho-communism.

19.  The idea of the ‘inevitability of gradualism’ was advocated by Fabian socialists in the UK, but its broad principles were accepted by Eduard Bernstein and other early democratic socialists who supported the ‘parliamentary’ road to socialism. Gradualism is the belief that progress is brought about by gradual, piecemeal improvements, rather than dramatic upheavals. It implies that change occurs through a legal and peaceful process of reform. The idea that gradualism is inevitable was based on a series of assumptions, widely held by early democratic socialists. First, the progressive extension of the franchise would eventually lead to the establishment of universal adult suffrage, and therefore of political equality. Second, political equality worked in the interests of the working class, easily the most numerous class in any industrial society. Third, as socialism is the natural ‘home’ of the working class, working class voters will support socialist parties, bringing them to power. Fourth, once in power, socialist parties would be able to carry out a fundamental transformation of society through a process of social reform. The working class could thus use the ballot box to introduce socialism, allowing socialism to become an evolutionary outgrowth of capitalism

20.  Traditional conservatives adopt an organic view of society. This implies that society works like a living thing, an organism, which is sustained by a fragile set of relationships between and amongst its parts. The whole is therefore more than just its individual parts. This implies that the individual cannot be separated from society, but is part of the social groups that nurture him or her, reflecting the dependent and security-seeking tendencies within human nature. Organic societies are fashioned ultimately by natural necessity, and therefore cannot be ‘improved’ by reform or revolution. Indeed, reform or revolution is likely to destroy the delicate fabric of society, creating the possibility of radical social breakdown. The liberal New Right, by contrast, adopts an atomistic view of society that is based on the assumption that human beings are self-seeking and largely self-reliant creatures. This view differs substantially from the organicist view, as society consists only of a collection of independent individuals and their families, implying that ‘there is no such thing as society’. Such ‘rugged’ individualism implies that society should afford individuals the greatest possible scope to make their own moral decisions and accept their consequences.  • However, the conservative New Right remains essentially faithful to the organic model. Its emphasis on the importance of authority, established values and national identity is based on organic assumptions.

21.  The basis of the anarchist critique of the state lies in its belief in the corruptibility of human nature. People who would otherwise be co-operative, sympathetic and sociable, become nothing less than oppressive tyrants when raised up above others by power, privilege or wealth. This extends the liberal belief that ‘power tends to corrupt’ into the more radical idea that power in any shape or form will corrupt absolutely. Political authority in whatever form, but especially in the form of state power, is thus inherently evil and oppressive.  The anarchist belief that the state is oppressive is supported by the fact that state authority is sovereign, compulsory, coercive and destructive. As a sovereign body, the authority of the state is absolute and unlimited: law can interfere with any aspect of personal or social existence. The compulsory authority of the state means that citizens in no sense consent to be governed; state authority is simply imposed on them. The coercive effect of state authority derives from the fact that the state rules through punishment, fining, imprisoning or even, in some circumstances, killing those who transgress its laws. The state is also exploitative, in that it robs individuals of their property through a system of taxation. Finally, the state is destructive as it requires individuals to fight, kill and die in wars that are inevitably precipitated by a quest for territorial expansion or national glory by one state at the expense of others.

22.  Socialists have traditionally viewed social class as the deepest and most politically significant of social divisions. A social class is a group of people who share a similar socio-economic position. In the Marxist tradition, class is linked to economic power, as defined by the individual’s relationship to the means of production. Social democrats, on the other hand, define social class in terms of income and status differences between non-manual workers (middle class) and manual workers (the working class).  Socialists use social class as an analytical tool, viewing classes as the principal actors in history and the main source of economic and social change. This is most evident in the Marxist belief that class conflict is the motor of history, capitalist society being doomed because the propertyless proletariat are destined to rise up and overthrow the ‘ruling class’, the property-owning bourgeoisie. All forms of socialism are characterised by the desire to reduce or overthrow class divisions. In the Marxist view, the overthrow of capitalism through a proletarian revolution will lead to the creation of a classless communist society. From a social democratic perspective, socialism is associated with narrowing of divisions between the middle class and the working class brought about through economic and social intervention. This leads to social amelioration and class harmony.

23.  Traditional conservatives have justified private property in at least three different ways:  Property has been seen as a source of security in an uncertain and unpredictable world – something to ‘fall back on’. Property therefore provides individuals with a source of protection – hence the importance of thrift.  Property ownership also promotes a range of important social values. Those who possess their own property are more likely to respect the property of others, which means that they will be law-abiding and support authority. Property therefore gives people a ‘stake’ in society.  Property can be seen as an extension of an individual’s personality. People ‘realise’ themselves, even see themselves, in what they own. Possessions are not merely external objects, valued because they are useful, but also reflect something of the owner’s personality and character.  However, libertarian conservatives and supporters of the liberal New Right have embraced an essentially liberal view of property as something that is ‘earned’. In this view, property represents individual merit (ability and hard work), meaning that property is an absolute right. Such a position contrasts with the traditional conservative belief that property also entails duties.

24.  Liberals have supported the fragmentation of political power because of concerns about power itself and, in particular, deep concerns about the implications of concentrated power. In the liberal view, power tends to corrupt because human beings are essentially self-seeking and so are likely to use any position of power to pursue their own interests, probably at the expense of others. The greater the concentration of power, the greater the incentive people have to both benefit themselves and use others to this end. This is why absolute power leads to absolute corruption.  The fragmentation of power has two advantages. In the first place, it ensures that those who exercise power have only a limited ability to influence other citizens, thus preventing absolute power. Second, fragmenting political power creates a network of checks and balances, ensuring that power is a check on power. Fragmented government therefore creates internal constraints that prevent government from becoming a tyranny against the individual.  Liberals have supported fragmented government and checks and balances. Examples include the separation of powers, in which the legislature, executive and judiciary act as both independent and inter-dependent bodies. Other examples include federalism, based on the principle of shared sovereignty, devolution, parliamentary government, cabinet government and so on.

25.  Anarchists believe that the state is unnecessary because of their faith in natural order or spontaneous social harmony. This derives from their highly optimistic view of human nature and from their similarly optimistic view of certain social institutions. • Anarchists believe in the natural goodness, or at least potential goodness, of humankind. From this perspective, statelessness is compatible with order and harmony. This, in effect, turns social contract theory, and its justification for the state, on its head. Collectivist anarchists place a particular stress on the human capacity for sociable and co-operative behaviour. Individualist anarchists, for their part, stress the importance of enlightened human reason. Anarchists also paid attention to the capacity of social institutions to maintain order in the absence of the state. These institutions serve anarchists ends by helping to regulate society and encouraging development of positive human attributes rather than negative ones. Collectivist anarchists thus endorse common ownership or mutualist institutions. Individualist anarchists support the market believing in its capacity to maintain unregulated economic equilibrium.

26.  Marx explained the inevitability of capitalism’s collapse in terms of his philosophy of history. For Marx, the driving force of historical change was the dialectic, a process of interaction between two opposing forces leading to a further or higher historical stage. Whereas Hegel explained dialectical change in terms of ideas or the ‘world spirit’, Marx gave dialectic a materialist interpretation. Capitalism is doomed to collapse because of its own internal contradictions. In particular, capitalism embodies its own antithesis, the proletariat, seen by Marx as the ‘gravedigger’ of capitalism. Conflict between capitalism and the proletariat will therefore lead to a higher stage of development in the establishment of a socialist, and eventually a communist, society. • Marx believed that the contradictions of capitalism would come to the surface as the proletariat achieved revolutionary class consciousness, an awareness of the fact of its own exploitation. This would occur as capitalism went through a series of deepening crises, leading to the immiseration of the proletariat. This would result in a proletarian revolution which was destined to overthrow capitalism.
27. Utopianism is a belief in the unlimited possibilities of human self-development expressed in a belief in the possibility of establishing a perfect or ideal society. A negative connotation often associated with utopianism is that such ideas are impossible or unachievable because perfection does not take account of the realities and complexities of human nature. Anarchism is linked to utopianism because it is distinguished by the belief that political authority in all shapes and forms can be abolished and replace by absolute freedom. This faith is rooted in highly optimistic views of human nature of the capacity of intuitions, such as common ownership or market capitalism, to generate natural harmony. Critics of anarchism suggest that such views are utopian in the negative sense.

28.  The liberal fear of power derives from a belief in individualism. Self-interested individuals will, if they have power over others, use their position to benefit themselves, probably at the expense of others. The greater the power, the greater the capacity for abuse, and therefore the greater the corruption. Acton's warning that ‘power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely’ thus expresses the core liberal belief that all systems of rule are potential tyrannies against the individual, but that tyranny will almost certainly flow from a system of rule in which power is concentrated. Liberals seek to limit concentrations of power through internal and usually institutional constraints on government that attempt to fragment power and create a network of checks and balances. These include devices such as the separation of powers, parliamentary government, bicameralism, federalism and so on. This is why liberals believe that ‘liberty is power cut into pieces’.

29.  The traditional conservative justification for private property is based on a number of considerations. First, conservatives have emphasised the value of property in providing people with a source of stability in an insecure world, and have, as a result, highlighted the importance of thrift. This is reflected in the notion of a property-owning democracy. Second, conservatives have traditionally believed that property is an exteriorisation of one's own personality, in the sense that people 'see' themselves in what they own. Third, they have held that property ownership helps to promote healthy social values and attitudes in that it encourages citizens to be law-abiding and to respect property; and that property ownership provides people with security in an insecure world. Neo-liberal conservatives, on the other hand, justify property on the basis of a liberal belief in merit and the entitlement to own what one's labour has produced, although this should not be portrayed as the basic or traditional conservative view.
30. Collectivism is the belief that collective human action is morally and practically superior to individual self striving. Socialists have supported collectivism because it corresponds to their view of human nature, which stresses that humans are essentially social creatures bound together by a common humanity. Collectivism thus strengthens social bonds and promotes co-operation rather than self-defeating competition, benefiting both the individual and society. Socialists have promoted collectivism in a variety of ways. These include: trade unionism and a stress on class solidarity; welfare systems and redistributive tax structures which strengthen social responsibility and particularly a concern for the less well-off; and forms of common ownership, ranging from workers' self-management through to state collectivisation, that promotes co-operation and a sense of collective economic identity and interest (Note: collectivism should not be mistaken for collectivisation, although the latter can be viewed as a means of promoting the former).

31.  Although anarchism is often associated with a fierce rejection of capitalism, individualist anarchists have usually favoured capitalism, a tendency which in its most radical form has lead in the direction of so-called anarcho-capitalism. This link between anarchism and capitalism has two bases. First, capitalism has been associated, particularly in the eyes of free-market economists, with personal freedom, and unrestricted freedom is the core principle of anarchism. Capitalist freedom grants the individual freedom of choice over economic and social matters. Second, capitalism is based on a system of self-regulating market competition which tends towards equilibrium (Adam Smith’s ‘invisible hand’). As such, capitalism substitutes itself from the state as a means of ensuring order, the difference being that this order is compatible with absolute freedom.

32.  Constitutionalism refers to the principle of limited government brought about by the existence, either of external and usually legal checks on government power, notably in the form of a ‘written’ constitution, and internal checks on government brought about by institutional fragmentation. Liberals defend constitutionalism primarily because they fear that, as power tends to corrupt, all systems of rule are apt to become tyrannies against the individual. This fear is grounded in the assumption that human beings are essentially self – seeking, and so will use power for their own benefit and, probably at the expense of others. Furthermore, constitutionalism prevents the development of absolute power, and therefore absolute corruption, because it gives rise to a system of check and balance. These include the separation of power, judicial independence, parliamentary government, federalism and so forth.

33.   Individualism is the belief in the primacy of the human individual over any social group or collective body. It can take the form of either methodological individualism, implying that the individual is central to any political theory or social explanation, or ethical individualism, which implies that society, should be constructed so as to benefit the individual, giving moral priority to individual rights, needs and interests. Anarchism is linked to individualism through the idea of the sovereign individual. When individualism is taken to its extreme, it implies the idea that absolute and unlimited authority resides within each human being. From this perspective, any constraint on the individual is evil, especially when it is imposed by the state, a sovereign, compulsory and coercive body. Extreme individualism therefore implies anarchism. This is reflected in the individualist anarchist tradition.
34. The One Nation tradition in conservatism provides the justification for limited social and economic intervention, particularly in the form of welfare provision. Its key principles include paternalism, social duty, moral responsibility and social cohesion. These principles have been supported on two main grounds.
The application of such principles in the form of social reform and welfare serves the long-term interests of the wealthy and privileged by helping to neutralise political discontent on the part of the weak and vulnerable. In this sense, social reform is the antidote to social revolution.

One Nation principles have a moral justification, in that the wealthy & powerful owe their social position, to a significant degree, to the accident of birth. This implies both that a high social position entails social duties, notably those linked to ameliorating poverty and supporting the disadvantaged, and that the poor are ‘deserving’, in the sense that they are not the architects of their own misfortune and cannot rectify their poverty through simple hard work and self-help.
35. Economic liberalism refers to a belief in the market as a self-regulating mechanism that tends naturally to deliver general prosperity and opportunities for all. In view of the market’s tendency towards long-run equilibrium, such economic thinking implies very limited state intervention and then only to protect market competition (for example, by restricting cartels and monopolies).
Social liberalism, on the other hand, refers to a belief in qualified social intervention, particularly focused on welfare provision to help citizens who are unable to help themselves. Justified by reference to the need to expand positive freedom and promote equal opportunities, this implies the expansion of social welfare in the form of, for example, social-security, health, education and other services.

36. Neoliberalism refers to an updated version of classical political economy that is dedicated to market individualism and minimal statism. Neoliberalism is justified on the grounds of the supposed economic efficiency and responsiveness that stems from unregulated capitalism and by reference to key political principles, notably individual freedom. It is primarily reflected in a desire to ‘roll back’ economic and social intervention. Neoconservatism is a modern version of social conservatism that emphasises the need to restore order, return to traditional or family values or revitalise nationalism. Differences between neoliberalism and neoconservatism include the following:

  • Neoliberalism derives from classical liberalism whereas neoconservatism is rooted in traditional conservatism.
  • The former advances an atomistic model of society while the latter is linked to organicism.
  • The former is libertarian while the latter is authoritarian.· The former emphasises economic dynamism while the latter prioritises social order.The intellectual skills relevant to this question are as follows:· The ability to analyse and explain differences between neoliberalism and neoconservatism.

37. Communism refers to the principle of the collective ownership of wealth and, hence, the abolition of private property. Anarchism has been linked to communism through the anarcho-communist tradition, as espoused by Kropotkin and others. This tradition has fused a communist commitment to collectivising wealth with an anarchist belief in self-management and natural order. The link between anarchism and communism is based on a number of assumptions, including the following:
  • Communist assumptions about human nature emphasise the capacity for sociable, cooperative and gregarious behaviour, assumptions that are key to the anarchist belief in statelessness and natural order.
  • The institution of common ownership is thought to have anarchic implications, in that collective wealth tends to strengthen social bonds and foster sympathy between and amongst people. Communism therefore creates conditions in which anarchist goals can be achieved.
  • Marxist ideas about the ‘withering away’ of the state highlight an anarchist-like preference for a stateless society.The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are as follows:


·        The ability to analyse and explain the nature of links between anarchism and communism.
38. Liberals believe that citizens should enjoy the maximum possible liberty consistent with a like liberty for all. No liberal, therefore, supports the principle of absolute freedom. The principal disagreement within liberalism over freedom is over its nature. Classical liberals believe in negative freedom, viewed as the absence of external restrictions on the individual, allowing freedom of choice. Modern liberals, by contrast, believe in positive freedom. They understand this to mean self-mastery or self-realisation: the achievement of autonomy and the development of human capacities. However, modern liberalism builds on a framework of negative freedom, believing that positive freedom is only justified in circumstances where citizens do not enjoy the capacity to make wise moral decisions in their own interests, usually because of social disadvantage. The desire to ‘help individuals to help themselves’ therefore embraces both negative and positive conceptions of freedom.The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are as follows:

The ability to analyse and explain the nature and extent of liberal disagreements over freedom.

39.   Fundamentalist socialism is a form of socialism that seeks to abolish capitalism and replace it with a qualitatively different kind of society. In this view, capitalism is seen to be fundamentally corrupt or fatally flawed, stemming from the fact that it is a system of class exploitation. Socialism, in this view, is defined by the desire to abolish private property. Revisionist socialism, on the other hand, is a form of socialism that has revised its critique of capitalism and seeks to reconcile greater social justice with surviving capitalist forms. In this view, the goal of socialism is to reform or ‘humanise’ capitalism usually through an extension of economic and social intervention. Revisionist socialism practises the politics of social justice rather than the politics of ownership. The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are as follows: · The ability to analyse and explain key differences between fundamentalist socialism and revisionist socialism.
40. Tradition refers to ideas, practices and institutions that have endured through time and have therefore been inherited from an earlier period. Tradition thus establishes continuity between present generations, past generations and future generations. There are various conservative justifications for tradition and continuity. These include the following:

  • Tradition has been justified on the grounds that it has been tried and tested by history, having proved its value to the larger society by its capacity to survive. In this view, traditions are more reliable than abstract theories as guides to action.
  • Tradition and continuity are psychologically reassuring, generating a sense of stability and belonging precisely because they are familiar.
  • In some cases, tradition has been justified on religious grounds, linked to the idea that inherited practices and institutions are ‘God given’.

The intellectual skills relevant to this question are as follows: The ability to analyse and explain conservative arguments in favour of tradition and continuity.
41. Conservative have held that society has an 'organic' character, in the sense that it exhibits features that are normally associated with living organisms – human beings or plants. In this view, societies are complex networks of relationships that ultimately exist to maintain the whole, the whole being more important than its individual parts. In that sense, society differs from a machine, which is merely a collection of parts. The conservative notion of an organic society has a variety of implications, including the following: 
 It implies that change, particularly radical change, is undesirable, as it misguidedly treats society as if it were a machine whose parts can be assembled and reassembled, recast and reformed, in the hope of improving its workings.  It supports a ‘communitarian’ tendency within traditional conservatism that stresses the importance of social duty and obligation, and is linked to the One Nation tradition  The health of an organic society is upheld by attempts to strengthen the ‘fabric’ of society, in line with a functionalist view of social institutions and structures. Such thinking has encouraged conservatives to support a variety of policies and practices. Examples would include:  upholding established institutions, supporting traditional values and a common culture, strengthening authority and social discipline. A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Clear and explicit understanding of the nature of an organic society
Clear explanation of at least two implications of the conservative belief in an organic society
42. Neoliberals support a minimal state, one that merely maintains domestic order, enforces contracts and provides defence against foreign attack, leaving other matters, especially for economic and moral issues, in the hands of the individual.
They do so on two grounds. First, ‘rolling back’ the state unleashes the dynamism of the market, offering the prospect of prosperity for all by removing the ‘dead hand’ of the state from the economy. Second, it has moral benefits in that it widens individual freedom and strengthening personal responsibility.
Neoconservatives support a strong state, which has an influence that extends clearly into the social and moral realms. They believe that the state should be strengthened in three main areas. First, the system of law and order should be made more effective, particularly by using a stronger regime of punishments to deter wrong-doing. Second, traditional values should be upheld, if necessary by law, in order to ensure that society is bound together by a common culture. Third, similar thinking also inclines neoconservatives to support the promotion of national patriotism.
Note: Neo-cons do not support welfare & social reform, & in this sense agree with neoliberal thinking regarding the state.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
  • Limited knowledge of the neoliberal view of the role of the state.
  • Limited knowledge of the neoconservative view of the role of the state.
  • Or a clear explanation of one view of the state and a weak account of the other view.
    A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
  • Clear explanation of the neoliberal view of the role of the state.
  • Clear explanation of the and neoconservative view of the role of the state
43. Revisionist socialism is a broad term that encompasses a variety of attempts to revise or reformulate the fundamentalist goals of socialism. The key idea associated with revisionist socialism is that the socialism should be advanced through the reform, or ‘humanising’, capitalism, as opposed to the abolition and replacement of capitalism, as suggested by fundamentalist socialists. Other relevant ideas include the following:
• The revisionist stance is based on the recognition that capitalism has advantages that alternative economic systems may not be able to rival, notably an unrivalled ability to generate wealth.
• Revisionist socialism defines socialism in terms of equality (or at least reducing material inequality), practicing the politics of social justice rather than the politics of ownership.
• The mechanisms through which social justice (and therefore socialism) can be advanced include the mixed economy, economic management and, above all, comprehensive social welfare.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Awareness of the nature of revisionist socialism/Limited knowledge of at least one idea associated with rev socialism
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Clear understanding of the nature of revisionist socialism
• Clear and full explanation of at least two ideas associated with revisionist socialism
44. Paternalism refers to the exercise of authority over others for the purpose of bringing them benefit or protecting them from harm, acting (supposedly) in a fatherly fashion. Paternalist ideas are most closely associated with the One Nation conservative tradition. The ground on which Conservatives have support paternalism include the following:
• Paternalism can be justified on moral grounds. As, in the traditional conservative view, wealth and social position are largely acquired through the accident of birth, the privileged have an obligation to help those who are less fortunate than themselves. Duty is thus the price of privilege. This also implies that the poor are ‘deserving’ of support because they are not the architects of their own misfortunes.
• It can also be justified on practical grounds. The discharging of paternal obligations helps to bind a hierarchical society together, preventing the poor from becoming so poor that they become a threat to the established order and its institutions.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Accurate, but possibly implicit, awareness of the nature of paternalism
• Limited knowledge of at least one conservative argument in favour of paternalism
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Clear, but possibly implicit, understanding of the nature of paternalism
• Clear and full explanation of at least two conservative arguments in favour of paternalism
45. Marx believed that historical change is brought about through a dialectical process involving fundamental contradictions that eventually lead to the collapse of each class society. In the case of capitalism, these contradictions are rooted in the phenomenon of private property and result in irreconcilable class conflict between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, the former being a ruling class that exploits and oppresses the latter. For Marx, the collapse of capitalism would come about though a proletarian revolution, which would occur as the proletariat gained revolutionary class consciousness, and so acquired an accurate understanding of the exploitative nature of the capitalist system. This would occur through the immiseration of the proletariat, a product of capitalism’s the deepening crises of over-production.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Limited knowledge of why Max believed that capitalism is doomed to collapse
• Limited knowledge of how Marx believed the capitalism would collapse
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Clear explanation of why Marx believed that capitalism is doomed to collapse
• Clear and full explanation of how Marx believed the collapse of capitalism would occur
46. Revolution refers to a fundamental and irreversible change, typically brought about through the exercise of force. Reform, on the other hand, refers to gradual, piecemeal improvements, brought about peacefully through the existing constitutional structure. Socialists have advocated revolution rather than reform for a number of reasons, including the following.  Before the advent of political democracy, the working masses did not have the opportunity to advance socialism through reformist and constitutional measures, leaving revolution as the only means of achieving socialism. Revolution has the advantage that it promises a root-and-branch transformation of capitalism, and therefore has sometimes (but not always) been attractive to fundamentalist socialists, such as Marxists. For many revolutionary socialists, reformism is impossible because it suggests that socialism can be brought about through a legal and political structure that is fundamentally biased in favour of capitalism and therefore against socialism. Marxists explain this in terms of base/superstructure analysis.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Accurate, if probably implicit, awareness of the nature of revolution
Limited knowledge of at least one socialist argument in favour of revolution
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Clear, and probably explicit, understanding of the nature of revolution
Clear explanation of at least two socialist arguments in favour of revolution
47. Authority is the right to influence the behaviour of others in a manner not of their choosing. Conservatives have defended authority on a number of grounds:
• Authority is a vital source of support and guidance for the people who do not know what is good for them. As such, authority arises naturally ‘from above’, as in the authority of parents over children. Authority is thus linked to paternalism.
• Authority is also a source of security and stability in society, allowing individuals to know ‘where they stand’ and what is expected of them. Authority thus counters rootlessness and anomie.
• Authority, backed up by a system of punishments, is the only effective guarantee of public order, by virtue of its capacity to constrain baser human urges and instincts.
48. Socialists have a positive view of human nature in a variety of senses:
• Because they believe that human nature is ‘plastic’, moulded by the experiences and circumstances of social life, they believe that human beings have a high capacity for personal and social development, allowing, at times, to advance utopian views.
• Socialists believe that human beings are social animals, suggesting that the potential for cooperative, sociable and gregarious behaviour lies at the core of their nature. This suggests that social relationships tend to be characterised by harmony, mutual respect and peaceful interaction, in line with the principal of collectivism.
• Drawing inspiration from Enlightenment rationalism, socialists also believe that human beings are reason-guided creatures, capable, apart from anything else, of reshaping their lives and their society for the better.
49. Both anarchists and Marxists view the state as oppressive, but they have very different ideas about the origins and nature of state oppression.
• Anarchists trace state oppression to the capacity for human corruption when anyone exercises power over others. This makes the state evil and oppressive in all circumstances. Marxists, by contrast, believe that state is an instrument of class oppression, being shaped by the economic ‘base; and operating in the interests of the economically dominant class.
• Anarchists therefore reject the Marxist notion of the dictatorship of the proletariat, the idea of a temporary socialist state that will manage the transition to a fully socialist society.
• While Marxists believe that the state will ‘wither away’ as class antagonism abates, anarchist argue that states can only be abolished. The proletarian state will therefore not wither away; instead it needs to be abolished.
50. The liberal view of equality emphasises foundational equality (that people are ‘born’ equal), implying support for both formal equality and equality of opportunity.
Socialists criticise the liberal view of equality both on the grounds that it tends to conceal inequalities of the capitalist system and typically serves to justify social inequality. Formal equality, for instance, may treat individuals alike in terms of their rights and entitlements, but takes no account of their often very different economic and social circumstances. The doctrine of equality of opportunity both serves to promote rivalry and competition amongst individuals and is often used to imply that unequal outcomes are justifiable because they reflect unequal personal merit (ability and willingness to work).
51. Rationalism is that belief that the world has a rational structure, which can be disclosed through the application of reason and analysis. Liberalism is linked to rationalism in the sense that liberal ideology stemmed from the Enlightenment and so reflects an underlying belief in reason and progress. The implications of the link between liberalism and rationalism include the following:
• Most importantly, it strengthens the liberal belief in freedom, as it implies that rational individuals are the best judges of their own best interests.
• It inclines liberals to believe that conflict and disagreement can be resolved through the application of argument and debate, rather than the use of force.
• It explains why liberals have a faith in reform, grounded in the assumption that human history is characterised by a gradual expansion of human understanding, which can be used to make the world a better place.
52. The conservative fear of moral and cultural diversity is rooted in assumptions about society and human nature.
For conservatives, society has an organic character in that the whole is more than the collection of its individual parts. Society is thus bound together by a fragile network of relationships and institutions.  Order and stability within such societies is promoted by shared values and a common culture; moral and cultural diversity therefore threaten conflict and even social breakdown.
Moreover, as human beings are limited and dependent creatures, shared values and a common culture are the vital source of rootedness and belonging, helping to engender a stable and secure sense of identity. Cultural and moral diversity are thus also associated with rootlessness and personal insecurity.
53. The New Right advocates 'rolling back the state' for a variety of reasons. The economic arguments against state intervention are based on the idea of the free market and the belief that markets are self-regulating in that they tend towards long-term equilibrium. Economic intervention thus upsets this fragile balance, endangering growth and prosperity. In particular, high levels of public spending are associated with rising inflation, nationalised industries are seen to be inherently inefficient and high levels of taxation and regulation inhibit enterprise.
The market is the only efficient way of allocating resources via the price mechanism. The moral arguments against interventionism are grounded in individualism, particularly atomistic individualism; for instance, social welfare is seen to breed state dependency, undermining dignity and individual responsibility, and redistribution violates property rights and amounts to legalised theft.
Level 3 should demonstrate a full understanding of the arguments & be aware of their economic & moral dimensions.
54. Conservatives have traditionally believed that human nature is imperfect because they associate human beings with a variety of flaws or inadequacies. Eg, human beings are psychologically limited and dependent creatures, in that they thirst for security and stability, as provided, for instance, by tradition and authority.
People are also morally base or imperfect because they are driven by non-rational passions and instincts, such as lust, greed and the desire for power; this has, sometimes, been linked to the Biblical idea of 'original sin'.
Finally, people have limited intellectual and rational faculties, in that they are incapable of fully understanding and explaining the world in which they live, having to rely, as a result, on the guidance of history and tradition. New Right Conservatives largely reject the notion of human imperfection, although egoism could be regarded as a moral flaw (though not by supporters of the New Right).

55. The traditional conservative view of the individual stresses human imperfection. In particular, human individuals are regarded as psychologically imperfect, in that they are limited and dependant creatures who thirst for security, provided, for example, by tradition or authority. They are also intellectually imperfect, in that they are unable fully to understand their world and act in accordance with reason – tradition is a better guide to action than reason. Their moral imperfection is evident in a tendency to be driven by instinct and irrational impulse, suggesting that disorder and criminality flow from the make-up of the individual.
The New Right view differs on a number of counts. This is clearest in relation to the neoliberal stress on individual self-reliance and their belief in a robust, even rugged, form of individualism (‘there is no such thing as society …’). Individuals are fiercely independent, not dependent, creatures. Neoliberals also believe in reason – human beings are rationally self-interested: only individuals know what is best for them (utilitarian view). This also inclines the New Right to believe in theory rather than tradition. However, the stress on self-interestedness (albeit rationally guided) overlaps rather with the idea of a ‘natural’ tendency towards disorder.
56. Constitutionalism is the principle that government power should be constrained by a framework of legal and institutional rules. Consent refers to the idea that the right to govern derives from the agreement of the governed, usually, in practice, expressed through the mechanism of elections.
The anarchist objection to constitutionalism and consent is, most basically, that both principles promise to check or constrain government power which, anarchists believe, is fundamentally evil and therefore untameable. This belief derives from the idea that the state is intrinsically coercive, exploitative and destructive, linked to the absolutely corrupting nature of power. Moreover, both principles recruit the public into its own oppression by concealing the real nature of state power. Constitutionalism perpetuates the myths of limited government and respect for civil liberty; consent perpetuates the myth of public accountability and rule in the public interest.
57. Anarchists believe the state is unnecessary because they believe that peace, stability and prosperity will arise spontaneously in conditions of absolute freedom. This faith in 'natural order' is rooted in highly optimistic assumptions about both human nature and certain social institutions.Collectivist anarchists assert that human beings are naturally sociable, gregarious and co-operative, while individual anarchists argue that individuals will live in harmony with one another through the dictates of reason and enlightened self-interest.
Collectivist anarchists further stress that common ownership, decentralisation and self-management foster social harmony and personal development, while individualist anarchists place faith in market competition as a means of ensuring equilibrium and socially just outcomes. Note: the belief that the state is evil does not imply that it is unnecessary, liberals holding the former position but rejecting the latter
58. Utopianism is a belief in the unlimited possibilities of human self-development expressed in a belief in the possibility of establishing a perfect or ideal society. A negative connotation is often attached to utopianism, implying that such ideas are impossible or unachievable because perfection does not take account of the realities and complexities of human nature.
Anarchism is linked to utopianism because it is distinguished by the belief that political authority in all shapes & forms can be abolished & replaced by a society in which individuals are absolutely free. This utopian faith is rooted in highly optimistic assumptions about human nature & the capacity for unregulated social harmony. For collectivist anarchists this is based on the belief that there is a pronounced human propensity for sociability & cooperation (not simply that people are ‘naturally good’); and for individualist anarchists it is based on assumptions about rationalism. Social institutions also promote harmony, notable the common ownership of wealth for anarcho-collectivists and market competition for anarcho-individualists. However, critics of anarchism suggest that such views are utopian in the negative sense.
59. Toleration is a willingness to accept beliefs and actions with which one disagrees. Pluralism as a normative theory, is the belief that multiplicity or diversity desirable. Liberals defend toleration and pluralism on the grounds that they benefit both the individual and society. They uphold individual rights and freedoms and ensure solid progress by testing truth against rival conceptions of reality.
Other justifications are linked to individualism and its implication of human uniqueness, and the underlying liberal belief in consensus and social harmony.
Strong responses will consider justifications that go beyond individual freedom.
60. Liberals support several kinds of equality, all reflecting a commitment to individualism. Most basically, they endorse foundational equality, the belief that all humans are 'born' equal in the sense that their lives are of equal moral worth. This can be seen in the doctrine of natural rights. Foundational equality implies formal equality, the belief that citizens should enjoy the same formal status in society. The most important expressions of formal equality are legal equality ( equality before the law) and political equality (universal suffrage and one person, one vote).Liberals also endorse equality of opportunity, the idea of equal life-chances, sometimes expressed as a commitment to a 'level playing-field'. The doctrine of equal opportunities legitimises social inequality to a greater or lesser extent. Classical liberals have been particularly keen to reject social equality on the grounds that it is unjust (different people are treated the same) and that it removes economic incentives.
However, modern liberals use equal opportunities, positive freedom and Rawlsian arguments to defend relative social equality, achieved through welfare/redistribution.
61. Constitutionalism is the theory or practice of restricting government power through the establishment of a framework of constitutional regulations, usually involving the fragmentation of power to create a network of checks and balances.
Consent is the principle that the right to govern derives from the willing agreement of the governed, who thus view the actions of government as rightful or legitimate.
Consent is often in practice associated with the act of voting and therefore institutionalised through a system of electoral democracy.
Liberals emphasise the importance of constitutionalism and consent because both are mechanisms for protecting or enlarging the sphere of individual liberty by restricting the capacity of government to encroach upon the individual. This commitment to limiting government reflects the underlying liberal fear that power is inherently corrupting, a consequence of egoism, meaning that government is always liable to become a tyranny against the individual. Constitutionalism achieved this aim through formal, institutional and often legal restrictions upon government officials and bodies. Consent achieves it by ensuring that politicians are publicly accountable and, ultimately, removable.

 62. Classical & modern liberals disagree about the nature of freedom & its implications for the state, as follows:
Classical liberals have endorsed a ‘negative’ view of freedom. By this standard, freedom consists of noninterference – the absences of external constraints on the individual. Freedom is thus associated with privacy or choice. The principle checks on negative freedom are laws and physical constraint. Support for negative freedom thus implies ‘rolling back’ the state.
  • By contrast, modern liberals believe in ‘positive’ freedom, the ability to grow and develop (achieving individuality), and realise individual potential (self-realisation or selffulfilment). By this standard, the principle checks on freedom are social in nature – poverty, homelessness, unemployment and so on. Positive freedom thus implies welfare and state intervention.
  • However, classical and modern liberals agree about freedom in that:
  • they both prioritise freedom, wishing to ensure that each individual enjoys the maximum possible liberty consistent with a like liberty for all
  • neither believe in unlimited freedom – liberty may lead to the abuse of others
  • modern liberals do not reject negative freedom altogether. Their goal is to ‘help people to help themselves’, meaning that their support for positive freedom is conditional: they only support it when social disadvantage prevents people from making their own moral choices. The long-term goal of both classical and modern liberals is to promote individual autonomy (negative freedom).

63.  Socialists support common ownership for a variety of reasons. These include that, since property is produced collectively, it should be owned collectively; that common ownership helps to promote community and social solidarity; and that it ensures a high level of social equality, or at least restricts the inequalities that private property can bring about. While communists have favoured wholesale common ownership in the form of state collectivisation, extending common ownership to all productive wealth, social democrats have realised common ownership through nationalisation and restricted it to key industries within a mixed economy. 'New' social democrats or supporters of the 'third way' have largely abandoned the politics of ownership and accepted the merits of private enterprise.

64.  Marx's doctrine of 'withering away' suggests that during the transition from capitalism to full communism the state and the institutions of coercive political authority will gradually fade and eventually cease to exist. The basic reason for the 'withering away' of the state is that, since all states are tools of class oppression, reflecting the economic structure of society, as a classless communist society emerges the state will lose its core functions and thus its reason for existence. The dictatorship of the proletariat, established after the overthrow of capitalism, is destined to be temporary as the bourgeoisie will eventually be reconciled to socialism and cease to act as an agent of counter-revolution. Faith in 'withering away' was also underpinned by Marx's belief in co-operation and social solidarity , enabling people in a communist society to manage their own affairs peacefully and harmoniously in the absence of political authority.
65.  Marx believed that a proletarian revolution was inevitable because he regarded capitalism as a fundamentally flawed economic and social system and considered the proletariat as the ‘grave digger’ of capitalism. Capitalism is flawed in that it is based on a contradiction rooted in the institution of private property and reflected in an antagonistic class system. The proletariat is thus defined by the fact that, by virtue of not owning property, it has to sell its labour power to earn subsistence. In this process it is exploited, in that surplus value is extracted from its labour. This exploitation is systematic and unavoidable, and means that the interests of the proletariat are irreconcilable with capitalism. A proletarian revolution is thus inevitable. It will occur when the proletariat achieves class consciousness, when it becomes aware of the fact of its own exploitation. This occurs as capitalism goes through cyclical crises of over-production, eventually leading to its final collapse.
66. Socialists have supported cooperation by establishing producers’ and consumers’ cooperatives in place of competitive businesses, and by favouring collectivisation over the market. They have favoured cooperation over competition on both moral and economic grounds.

  • In moral terms, they emphasise the social basis of human nature. Human beings are thus intrinsically linked to one another through their common humanity. Cooperation therefore strengthens social bonds between and amongst people, while competition encourages us to be greedy and selfish, denying our true nature.
  • In economic terms cooperation has the advantage that it allows societies to harness their collective energies on a rational basis, often through a system of planning. Competition, by contrast, is inefficient because energy is wasted as people struggle against one another.

 45 mark essay questions

  1. To what extent have conservatives supported ‘free market’ capitalism?
  2. ‘Liberals support equality, but only a qualified form of equality.’ Discuss.
  3. Why did democratic socialists believe in the ‘inevitability of gradualism’, & why has gradualism failed?
  4. ‘The similarities between classical & modern liberalism are greater than the differences.’ Discuss.
  5. Why, and to what extent, have conservatives placed their faith in pragmatism rather than principle?
  6. ‘A retreat from core values and goals has been a continuing feature of the history of socialism.’ Discuss.
  7. ‘Communism and social democracy offer starkly different models of socialism.’ Discuss.
  8. Why have conservatives supported tradition and continuity, and to what extent do they continue to do so?
  9. Why, and to what extent, have liberals supported toleration and diversity?
  10.  Is socialism defined by the rejection of private property?
  11. Why do liberals support the principle of limited government, & how do they propose that it be achieved?
  12. ‘Conservatism is a philosophy of human imperfection.’ Discuss.
  13. ‘Conservatives favour pragmatism over principle.’ Discuss. (45 marks)
  14. To what extent does modern liberalism depart from the ideas of classical liberalism? (45)
  15. Socialism is defined by its opposition to capitalism.’ Discuss. (45)
  16. To what extent do Conservatives support tradition & continuity? (45)
  17. Is Anarchism closer to socialism or liberalism? (45)
  18. To what extent do liberals support equality? (45)
  19. ‘Conservatism is ruling class ideology.’ Discuss. (45)
  20. ‘Liberal democracy is a contradiction in terms.’ Discuss. (45)
  21. To what extent has the history of socialism been characterised by a retreat from core principles? (45)
  22. Conservatism merely reflects the interests of the privileged and prosperous.’ Discuss.
  23. To what extent have socialists favoured the common ownership of wealth?
  24. ‘Liberalism is defined by the desire to minimise the role of the state.’ Discuss.
  25. ‘Anarchism is merely an extreme form of socialist collectivism.’ Discuss.
  26. ‘The notion of a stateless society is merely an anarchist fantasy.’ Discuss.
  27. To what extent is the New Right internally coherent?
  28. ‘Modern liberals have abandoned individualism and embraced collectivism.’ Discuss.
  29. To what extent do anarchists agree about the nature of the future anarchist society?
  30. To what extent have socialists been committed to equality of outcome?
  31. ‘Anarchists demand the impossible.’ Discuss.
  32. To what extent is conservatism a philosophy of imperfection?
  33. ‘A fear of democracy runs throughout liberalism.’ Discuss.
  34. To what extent have socialists disagreed about the means of achieving socialism?
  35. ‘Anarchism is merely free market liberalism taken to its extreme.’ Discuss.
  36. To what extent is there tension in conservatism between its commitment to the individual and its support for community?
  37. Has conservatism been more concerned with social stability than with economic freedom?
  38. 'Conservatism has always been characterised by tension between paternalism and libertarianism.' Discuss. 
  39. Why, and to what extent, have conservatives supported' one nation' principles?
  40. Is anarchism merely liberal individualism taken to its logical extreme?
  41. Is anarchism an example of individualism or collectivism?
  42. To what extent is anarchism a utopian creed? 
  43. To what extent are there tensions within modern liberalism over the role of the state? 
  44. ‘Modern liberals support state intervention, but only within limits.’
  45. ‘Evolutionary and revolutionary socialists disagree about both ends and means.’  Discuss
  46. 'A commitment to equality is the core feature of socialism.'      Discuss
  47. Why did socialists believe in gradualism, and why has gradualism failed?

1.             Free market capitalism is a form of capitalism that is free from government regulation, based on the principle of laissez-faire. Conservative support for free market capitalism has grown through the advance of neo-liberalism or the liberal New Right (in the UK, associated with Thatcherism). Rolling-back the state in the interests of the market and economic individualism has, arguably, been the dominant theme in UK and US conservatism since the 1980s, reflected in support for privatisation, deregulation, tax cuts and so on. Such free market policies are underpinned by the core belief that unregulated capitalism tends naturally towards equilibrium, & helps to promote efficiency, incentives and competition. Any form of state intervention can only threaten growth & prosperity, and transfer property unfairly. On the other hand, paternalistic or One Nation conservatism has rejected free market capitalism on the grounds that it is firmly rooted in unreliable economic theories and it threatens social stability by generating wide inequalities. They have therefore favoured a ‘middle way’ economy, in which the market is regulated by prudent levels of economic and social intervention. Such thinking has had some impact on modern conservatism, which has edged away from, but not broken with, free market thinking.
2. The liberal support for equality is based on a belief in individualism. Individualism implies foundational equality, the idea that human beings are ‘born’ equal; they are equal moral worth. This is reflected in a belief in formal equality, the idea of equal rights & entitlements. Liberals thus believe in legal equality (the law is no respecter of persons) & political equality (one person one vote, one vote one value). Liberals take this belief in equality further by supporting equality of opportunity, a belief in a level playing field in which all people have an equal chance to realise their potential & achieve to the maximum of their ability. For modern liberals, this can only be achieved when social inequality is reduced by welfare & other strategies. However, liberal forms of egalitarianism have been criticised. In the 1st place, equal opportunities provide no guarantee of equal outcomes. Indeed, quite the opposite is true. Equality of opportunity provides a justification for social inequality, so long as it is based on different natural abilities/different levels of hard work. People therefore have an equal opportunity to realise their unequal talents/abilities. This leads to meritocracy rather than egalitarianism. Moreover, socialists have argued that liberal ideas such as foundational & formal equality are limited because they do not deliver social equality. Equal voting rights, for instance, do not ensure that millionaires & beggars have the same political influence. Marxists argue that the liberal view of equality is only used to mask the underlying inequalities of the capitalist system.

3.             The doctrine of the ‘inevitability of gradualism’ was developed by Fabian socialists in the UK in the late 19th century. Gradualism refers to the introduction of social and economic change through incremental reform using constitutional methods. For the Fabians, gradualism would inevitably be successful because of the logic of political democracy. As the franchise was expanded, this would empower the working class as the electoral majority, who would naturally vote for socialist parties, thus bringing them to power. The arrival of political democracy therefore made the victory of socialism a certainty. These high expectations have failed for a number of reasons. 1st, as capitalism has developed, the size of the industrial working class has shrunk, meaning that socialist parties have been forced to revise their policies in order to appeal to other social classes. 2nd, it is questionable whether socialism is the ‘natural home’ of the working class. The widening of prosperity after 1945 even benefited the working class, inclining a growing number of working class voters to believe that ‘capitalism works’. 3rd, when in office socialist parties have not always been in power. Some theorists thus point to the influence of state elites or the entrenched power of major corporations to explain why, once in power, with working majorities, socialist parties have usually failed to deliver radical socialist reform. A Marxist explanation for the failure of gradualism is the influence of bourgeois ideology, deluding the proletariat & preventing them from recognising the fact of their own exploitation. Nevertheless, some have argued that gradualism has been successful. The development of a welfare state & a redistributive tax system could be seen to reflect the success of gradualist socialism.

4.             Modern liberalism is a theoretical development within liberal ideology that has revised some of the ideas of classical liberalism. Some classical liberals highlight the differences between classical & modern liberalism, even suggesting that modern liberalism does not belong within the liberal tradition as it has effectively abandoned individualism & embraced collectivism. The alternative view emphasises the similarities between classical & modern liberalism, the latter being seen to have built on core liberal ideas (& sometimes revised them) rather than abandoned them. Classical & modern liberals disagree over issues such as individualism (the former supporting egoistical individualism & the latter favouring developmental individualism), freedom (negative versus positive freedom), the state (minimal state versus enabling state), social welfare (individual responsibility versus social responsibility) & economic policy (laissez-faire versus Keynesian economic management). The notion that the similarities are greater than the differences reflects the belief that modern liberals accept much that classical liberal support, the only difference being the recognition that under certain social and economic conditions the minimal state favoured by classical liberalism is not compatible with human flourishing. Certainly, all liberals hold similar views about limited government and democracy. In answering this question, consider the following issues: • Undertaking of classical liberalism (AO1) • Understanding of modern liberalism (AO2) • Analysis & evaluation of differences between classical & modern liberalism (AO2)

5.             Conservatives have traditionally supported pragmatism over principle. Pragmatism is a tendency to make decisions on the basis of practical circumstances or outcomes rather than theoretical or principled considerations. The traditional conservative preference for pragmatism is based upon a number of grounds. These include the belief that ideas, principles and theories are inherently unreliable because the world is simply too complex for human beings to fully understand, and that pragmatism allows decisions to be made on the basis of experience, tradition and history and therefore on the basis of 'what works'. Pragmatism has allowed conservatives to steer a 'middle way' between ideological extremes, for example, endorsing either state intervention or market forces when it is prudent to do so. However, the rise of the New Right has weakened conservative pragmatism and introduced a strong emphasis upon ideological conviction and principle. This is most clearly evident in relation to neo-liberal economics which is based upon a consistent and principled belief in the free market and economic individualism. The extent to which principle has displaced pragmatism depends on the extent to which neo-liberal convictions have displaced traditionalism within conservatism. In answering this question, consider the following issues: • Understanding of competing conservative traditions (AO1)  Analysis and evaluation of differences between (AO2)

6.             There is much evidence that the history of socialism has been marked by a retreat from traditional principles. Early or nineteenth-century socialism was characterised by fundamentalist and often revolutionary principles. These were associated with ideas such as common ownership & absolute equality achieved through the abolition & replacement of capitalism. Marxism and anarcho-communism were the clearest expressions of this form of socialism. The advent of evolutionary or parliamentary socialism from the late nineteenth century onwards can be seen as a retreat from traditional principles in that it resulted in an accommodation with liberal constitutionalism, political pluralism & electoral democracy. Traditional principles were further undermined by the advent of revisionist socialism in the mid-twentieth century. Social democracy came to practise the politics of social justice rather than the politics of ownership, collectivist principles being replaced by an emphasis on redistribution and welfare, meaning that social democracy increasingly overlapped with modern liberalism. Further retreats can be associated with the collapse of communism, & therefore the declining significance of Marxism, in the 1989-91 period, & the revisionism in the 1980s & 1990s which witnessed either the modernisation of social democracy or replacement by 'third way' ideas & positions that have a post-socialist character. Some socialists nevertheless argue that socialism may have changed its ‘means’ but its ‘ends’ remain the same. In answering this question, consider the following issues: • Understanding of broad features of history of socialism (AO1) • Awareness of core values and goals of socialism (AO1 & 2) • Analysis of extent of socialist retreat from core values and goals (AO2)
7. Communism & social democracy represent very different forms of socialism, & offer starkly different models of a socialist society. Communism is based on the idea of the collective ownership of wealth. It is a form of fundamentalist socialism that looks to overthrow and replace the capitalist system. Communists have thus embraced revolution and called for qualitative economic and social change. For Marx, full communism referred to a society that was both classless & stateless. In the absence of class antagonism, the state would 'wither away' and people would be able to manage their own affairs peacefully & cooperatively. A very high level of social equality would reign, as the distribution of wealth would be strictly based on need. The orthodox communist societies of the twentieth century, however, translated this image into a form of state collectivisation, usually operating through a system of central planning. Such societies became politically repressive & failed to realise the promise of liberating humankind from material hardship. Social democracy, by contrast, represents a revisionist form of socialism. It aims to reform the capitalist system, not abolish it. Accepting that capitalism and market competition are the best ways of generating wealth, social democrats looked instead to ensuring that wealth is distributed in line with moral, rather than material, principles. Whereas communism was orientated around the politics of ownership, social democracy was committed to the politics of social justice, the desire to narrow distributive inequalities in society. Abandoning wholesale collectivisation, the principle themes within social democracy were a commitment to the mixed economy & selective nationalisation, a belief in economic management using Keynesian techniques & a commitment to a welfare state, seen as a mechanism for redistributing wealth. Social democracy also usually operated within a liberal-democratic political framework.

8.             Tradition refers to values, practices and institutions that have endured through time and, usually, have been passed down from one generation to the next. Tradition thus represents continuity with the past. Conservatives have supported tradition & continuity on a number of grounds. 1st, some conservatives have defended tradition on grounds of religious faith. If social customs and practices are regarded as 'God given', human beings should not question or challenge them. 2nd, the most significant of conservative arguments in favour of tradition is that it reflects the accumulated wisdom of the past. Customs, institutions & practices that have been 'tested by time' have been proved to work. They have survived by benefiting past generations & should be preserved for the benefit of present and future generations. Chesterton described this as a 'democracy of the dead'. 3rd, tradition helps to uphold social stability, generating a sense of identity for both society & the individual. In this view, the benefit of tradition is that it is familiar and reassuring. For the individual it generates 'rootedness' and belonging; for society it generates cohesion & a common culture. Neoliberal trends within modern conservatism have departed from traditionalism, however. Neoliberals have supported radical change, in line with their desire to 'roll back' economic and social intervention in the name of the free market and self-sufficient individualism. In a sense, they place reason above tradition in being guided by abstract economic theory rather than a desire for continuity with the past. This may, nevertheless, be a form of reactionary radicalism, as it reflects a desire to 'turn the clock back' to the alleged economic vigour of the laissez-faire nineteenth century. On the other hand, neoconservatives have placed renewed emphasis on tradition, particularly in the defence of so-called ‘traditional values’, needed to give society a clearer moral identity. This is also reflected in a defence of the so-called ‘traditional family’.
9. Liberals have supported diversity in a variety of forms including political, social & cultural pluralism (multiculturalism). This has usually been done on the grounds of toleration, although toleration only provides a qualified justification for diversity. Toleration means forbearance, a willingness to accept the views or actions with which one is in disagreement. Liberals support toleration for a variety of reasons. 1st, it reflects their belief in rationalism & acknowledges that rational individuals should be allowed to determine 'truth' as each understands it. 2nd, toleration reflects a belief in autonomy. Respect for the individual as a self-determining creature implies that constraints on the individual should be minimal, perhaps restricted to the prevention of 'harm to others'. This is particularly important in order to promote individuality & personal development. 3rd, toleration benefits society at large. This happens because it ensures that ideas, theories & values are constantly tested against rival ideas/values. A 'free market of ideas' promotes ongoing debate that contributes to the growth of understanding & therefore social progress. Restrictions on argument & debate will therefore lead to social stagnation. Some Liberals have gone further in supporting diversity by embracing the idea of neutrality or even value pluralism. However, a belief in toleration does not endorse unlimited political, social or cultural diversity. The basic limit to toleration, from a liberal perspective, is it is difficult to extend toleration to actions or practices that are in themselves intolerant or illiberal. E.g. expressions of race hatred, the political activities of fascist groups, or cultural practices such as female circumcision or the exclusion of women from education & public life. In this sense, toleration has to be protected from the intolerant. Liberals also believe that diversity should operate within an 'overlapping consensus' that establishes a deeper harmony or balance amongst competing interests & groups. This consensus is usually based on the maintenance of essentially liberal values, such as autonomy and equality. The maintenance of liberal-democratic structures that ensure government based on consent & guarantees for openness and individual freedom are therefore not negotiable from a liberal perspective. Liberals may thus not be prepared to 'tolerate' attempts to overthrow free political competition in the name of a single source of unchallengeable authority (be it a fascist state or an absolutist theocracy). There is also debate about the extent to which liberals can embrace neutrality &/or value pluralism.

10.          Private property is property that is owned by an individual or corporation, with other people being excluded from its use or benefit. Socialists have objected to private property on several grounds, including justice (property owners expropriate the labour power of those who produce wealth) and equality (private property gives rise to systematic class inequality). • Fundamentalists place particular emphasis on such ideas, rejecting private property outright. Marxists, for example, have practiced the ‘politics of ownership’, in looking to overthrow private enterprise (capitalism) & replace it by a system of common ownership (communism). • However, social democrats diluted this by accepting that much of the economy should remain in private hands. They came to accept that private ownership was more effective in generating wealth than common ownership, through the benefits of incentives & competition. Common ownership was therefore restricted to the ‘commanding heights of the economy', achieved through nationalisation and a mixed economy.• This trend has been taken further by ‘neo-revisionists’, who have effectively abandoned the ‘politics of ownership’ and even at times accepted the virtues of privatisation.

11.  Liberals support limited government because they believe that power is inherently corrupting. Unchecked power therefore means that government will become a tyranny against the people, a danger that is all the greater when power is concentrated in the hands of the few (Acton). As a result, liberals have endorsed a range of devices intended to limit government power. The most significant of these are: • 'External' legal or constitutional checks, such as a codified constitution, a bill of right & the rule of law. These seek to ring fence government by forcing it to operate within a network of formal and enforceable rules. • 'Internal' institutional checks, e.g. federalism, devolution, separation of powers, parliamentary government & cabinet government. These seek to limit government through fragmenting government power, both reducing concentrations of power & ensuring that power is a check on power (checks and balances). • Democratic processes, such as universal suffrage, regular and competitive elections and so on. These seek to deliver limited government by making government accountable to the people. Effective responses will both explain the devices of limited government and explain how and why they serve to check government power.

12.          Conservatism is a philosophy of human imperfection in a variety of sense. • Conservatives believe that people are psychologically imperfect, in the sense that they are limited & dependent creatures, needing the support of tradition, authority and social stability. This view, however, has become less prominent within conservatism due to the emphasis within the liberal New Right of rugged individualism ('there is no such thing as society'). • People are also considered morally imperfect, in the sense that they are driven by non-irrational lusts and impulses, creating the need for ‘tough’ law and order measures. Traditional conservatives have emphasised this view, and it has been reinforced by the conservative New Right in recent years. Nevertheless, One Nation conservatives provide the basis for acknowledging that there are social roots to crime and disorder, suggesting that it cannot all be put down to moral imperfection. • Finally, conservatives have thought people to be intellectually imperfect. This means that society should rely more on pragmatism and experience than abstract theories. The liberal New Right nevertheless rejects the idea of intellectual imperfection, placing considerable stress on theories and ideas, particularly those associated with free-market economics.
13. Pragmatism is the belief that behaviour should be shaped in accordance with practical circumstances and goals rather than principles, beliefs or ideological objectives.  • Traditional conservatives have undoubtedly favoured pragmatism over principle. The basis for this position is the belief that human beings are intellectually limited. The world is simply too complicated for human reason to fully grasp, hence the belief that the political world is ‘boundless and bottomless’. Traditional conservatives are therefore suspicious of abstract ideas and systems of thought that claim to understand what is simply incomprehensible. They prefer to ground their ideas in tradition, experience and history, adopting a cautious, moderate and above all pragmatic approach to the world, and avoiding, if at all possible, doctrinaire or dogmatic beliefs. Principles such as ‘rights of man’, ‘equality’ and ‘social justice’ are fraught with danger because they provide a blueprint for the reform or remodelling of the world, and all such blueprints are unreliable. Pragmatism thus ensures that ‘the cure is not worse than the disease’.  • This emphasis on pragmatism can be illustrated by the development of the One Nation tradition. As deepening social inequality contains the seeds of revolution, conservatives came to recognise that prudent social reform was the best protection against the danger of popular insurrection. A pragmatic concern to alleviate poverty is therefore in the interests of the rich and prosperous.  • However, the rise of the liberal New Right challenges this emphasis on pragmatism. The liberal New Right adopts a principled belief in economic liberty and the free market, borne out of a commitment to economic liberalism and thus a rationally-based approach to politics. This, in turn, significantly altered the conservative approach to change, New Right conservatives being much more inclined to endorse radical reform on the basis of the ideological blueprint that had been provided by free-market economics. This was evident in attempts by conservatives since the 1980s to ‘roll back the state’. Some, nevertheless, explain this anti-statist turn in conservative politics in terms of pragmatism, seeing it as partly motivated by the failure of economic and social intervention to deliver sustained economic growth. The skills that are relevant to this question are: • Ability to analyse and explain conservative belief in pragmatism and principle • Ability to evaluate the extent to which conservative believe in pragmatism and principle

14.  There is significant debate within liberalism about the relationship between classical & modern liberal ideas. Classical liberals have tended to regard modern liberalism as a radical departure from core or orthodox liberal thinking, whereas modern liberals tend to argue that their ideas are merely a development within liberalism & remain faithful to core beliefs.
• Classical liberals have based a strong emphasis on egoistical individualism, highlighting the fact that human beings are largely self-reliant creatures. This is reflected in a belief in negative freedom, understood as the absence of external constraints upon the individual. Such thinking implies that, as a necessary evil, the state should have a minimal role in society, acting only as a ‘nightwatchman’. This is reflected in a belief in economic liberalism, particularly illustrated by a belief in the free market, individual responsibility & merely safety-net welfare provision. In this light, modern liberalism has moved a long way from these core beliefs, possibly through the influence of socialism & collectivist ideas. In particular, modern liberals have revised their view of the state, accepting social & economic intervention. This has been done thro revising their idea of individualism (moving away from self-help/self-reliance) & freedom (shifting from positive freedom to negative freedom).
• However, modern liberals have emphasised the extent to which they have merely applied classical liberal ideas to changed economic and social circumstances. As capitalism has generated new patterns of social disadvantage rather than equality of opportunity, the state needs to step in and rectify these injustices. Economic and social intervention is therefore only justified in order to rectify social injustice and uphold equal opportunities and meritocracy. Although modern liberals favour an enabling state, their ultimate preference remains for individuals to make their own moral choices and for the economy to be structured by the market rather than the state.  The skills that are relevant to this question are:
• Ability to analyse and explain classical and modern liberal ideas and theories
• Ability to evaluate the extent of differences between classical and modern liberalism

15.          The relationship between socialism and capitalism is one that has opened up divisions within socialism itself. While fundamentalist forms of socialism can be said to be defined by their opposition to capitalism, revisionist socialism has sought instead to reconcile socialism with capitalism.
• Fundamentalist socialists, as Marxists or communists, have viewed capitalism as fundamentally flawed and irredeemable. Socialism is therefore defined by the attempts to overthrow capitalism and replace it by a qualitatively different social system. In this view, capitalism is associated with class oppression on systematic economic exploitation. For Marxists, this is reflected in irreconcilable class conflict between the bourgeoisie, as the owners of private property, and the proletariat, who subsist only through the sale of their labour power. Exploitation is explained in terms of surplus value and the fact that profit is only made through the expropriation of labour power. Capitalism cannot therefore be reformed improved; it must be completely removed and replaced by a system founded on common ownership. Marxists, indeed, believed that this process was inevitable, as it stems from the inherent contradictions of capitalist society.
• However, revisionist socialists or social democrats have revised their analysis of capitalism. Instead of viewing it as inherently flawed, they accept the market as the only reliable mechanism for generating wealthy. In this view, the problem with capitalism is its tendency to distribute wealth unjustly and unequally, a tendency that can be contained by economic and social reform. Social democrats therefore believe in reformed capitalism or ‘humanised’ capitalism. This form of socialism is not defined by its opposition to capitalism, but by its quest for social justice and distributive equality within a capitalist system.  The skills that are relevant to this question are: • Ability to analyse and explain socialist arguments against capitalism • Ability to evaluate the extent to which socialists reject capitalism

16.          Tradition refers to ideas, practices or institutions that have endured through time and have
therefore been inherited from earlier periods. Tradition therefore creates continuity between the past, the present and the future. The issues of tradition and continuity have deeply divided conservatives. Traditional conservatives have placed strong stress on the importance of tradition and continuity, while the New Right, particularly the liberal New Right, has often rejected tradition and continuity.  • Traditional conservatives have extolled the virtues of tradition in a number of ways. For some conservatives, tradition reflects religious faith, being fashioned by God the Creator. Traditional institutions and practices therefore constitute ‘natural law’. A more widely held view portrays tradition as the accumulated wisdom of the past. The institutions and practices of the past have been ‘tested by time’, and should be preserved for the benefit of the living and for generations to come. In this view, society consists of a partnership between the living, those who are dead and those who are to be born. It has also been described as a ‘democracy of the dead’, reflecting the fact that the dead will always outnumber the living. A third advantage of tradition and continuity is that they help to generate, for both society and the individual, a sense of identity. Established customs and practices are ones that individuals can recognise; they are familiar and reassuring. Tradition thus provides people with a feeling of ‘rootedness’ and belonging. Such an emphasis on tradition has meant that traditional conservatives have usually venerated established institutions and been at least cautious about change. Change is a journey into the unknown: it creates uncertainty and insecurity.  • The New Right has significantly revised the relationship between conservatism and tradition, however. The New Right attempts to fuse economic libertarianism (the liberal New Right or neoliberalism) with state and social authoritarianism (the conservative New Right or neoconservatism). As such, it is a blend of radical, reactionary and traditional features. Its radicalism is evident in its robust efforts to dismantle or ‘roll back’ interventionist government and liberal social values. This radicalism is clearest in relation to the liberal New Right, which draws on rational theories and abstract principles, and so dismisses tradition. New Right radicalism is nevertheless reactionary in that both the liberal and conservative New Right hark back to a 19th century ‘golden age’ of supposed economic prosperity and moral fortitude. However, the conservative New Right also makes an appeal to tradition, particularly through its emphasis on so-called ‘traditional values’.  The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are:
• Ability to analyse and explain conservative ideas about tradition and continuity
• Ability to evaluate the extent to which conservative support tradition and continuity
17. Anarchism can be viewed as a point of overlap between liberalism and socialism, the point at which both ideologies reach anti-statist conclusions. Anarchism therefore has a dual character: it can be interpreted as either a form of ‘ultra-liberalism’ or as a form of ‘ultra-socialism’. However, there is disagreement within anarchism about the relative importance of liberalism and socialism, depending on whether the anarchism in question is based on an extreme form of liberal individualism or an extreme form of socialist collectivism.  • Individualist anarchists reach their conclusions by pushing liberal individualism to its logical extreme. This implies individual sovereignty, the idea that absolute and unlimited authority resides in each human being. From this perspective, any constraint on the individual is evil, especially when it is imposed by a sovereign, compulsory and coercive state. Individualist anarchists also draw on economic liberalism in endorsing market economics as a way of bringing about equilibrium within a stateless society. However, significant differences exist between liberalism and individualist anarchism. First, even classical liberals argue that a minimal state is necessary to prevent self-seeking individuals from abusing one another. Law therefore exists to protect freedom, rather than constrain. Modern liberals take this argument further and defend state intervention on the grounds that it enlarges positive freedom. Second, liberals believe that government power can be ‘tamed’ or controlled by the development of constitutional representative institutions. Liberal-democratic states are therefore not viewed as an offence against the individual. • Anarchist conclusions can also be reached by pushing socialist collectivism to its limits. In that sense, anarchism shares with socialism a view of human beings as essentially social creatures, emphasizing the importance of sympathy, affection and co-operation. This is reflected in parallels between collectivist anarchism and Marxism, which both look to the construction of a stateless society, albeit achieved through different means. Nevertheless, anarchism and socialism diverge at a number of points, for example, Marxists have called for a revolutionary ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’, in effect, a temporary proletarian state that will protect the gains of the revolution. This clashes with the anarchist belief that all states are evil and oppressive. Similarly, anarchism differs from democratic socialism, in that the latter uses the state to reform or ‘humanise’ the capitalist system and to bring about greater equality and social justice. The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are:
• Ability to analyse and explain the relationship between anarchism and liberalism and socialism
• Ability to evaluate the extent of the relationship with liberalism and socialism

18.  The relationship between liberalism and equality has been a matter of deep debate. Liberals themselves have placed considerable stress on equality, while their critics, particularly socialists, portray liberalism as essentially inegalitarian. Much of this debate is about the importance of different forms of equality.
• The egalitarian credentials of liberalism are based upon a strong belief in foundational and formal equality. Liberals believe that people are ‘born’ equal in the sense that they are of equal moral worth. Foundational equality implies a belief in formal equality, the idea that individuals should enjoy the same formal status in society, particularly in terms of the distribution of rights and entitlements. The most important forms of formal equality are legal and political equality, ensured by ‘equality before the law’ and a system of one person, one vote at election time. In addition, liberals believe in equality of opportunity, the idea that each person should have the same chance to rise or fall in society. The game of life must thus be played on an even playing field.
• However, there is disagreement within liberalism about the implications of equality of opportunity. Classical liberals believe that a free-market economy guarantees equality of opportunity, also believing that there are benefits in the resulting social inequality. In particular, unlike individuals who should be rewarded differently and significant levels of social inequality act as an economic incentive, ultimately bringing benefit to all. Modern liberals, on the other hand, favour intervention, through welfare and redistribution, to narrow social inequalities, thereby linking equality of opportunity to a greater measure of equality of outcome. For Rawls, social inequality was only justified if it worked to the advantage of the least well-off.
• Liberalism has been criticised by socialists, who believe that it is inadequately committed to equality. The socialist critique of the liberal view of equality emphasises that a commitment to foundational and formal equality is hollow if individuals enjoy very different social circumstances and therefore life chances. Similarly, socialists have criticised the doctrine of equality of opportunity on the grounds that it is used to legitimise sometimes wide social inequalities. The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are: • Ability to analyse and explain liberal ideas on equality • Ability to evaluate the extent to which liberalism embraces equality

19.          ‘Ruling class ideology’ can be defined generally or in terms of Marxism. In general terms, a ruling class ideology is an ideology that favours the interests of the rich and powerful, and so bolsters their position in society. In Marxism, the term has a technical definition, which is linked to ‘false consciousness’ and the role of ideology in deluding the proletariat and preventing it realising its revolutionary destiny. Conservatism has often been criticised (by Marxists but also by liberals, social democrats and others) as an expression of ruling-class self-interest. This position is supported by the fact that conservative political doctrines have tended to be supported by dominant or privileged groups or appear to protect their interests. This can particularly be seen in relation to traditional conservative theories and ideas. For example, the commitment to tradition legitimises the status quo and thus the position of currently dominant groups; support for hierarchy and authority suggests that equality is unnatural and undesirable, and that rulers should rule; and the belief in property to favours those who own property rather than those who do not. Even types of conservatism that support reform, such as paternalistic conservatism, do so, arguably, in order to protect class privileges in the long run – reform helps to reconcile the less well-off to their social position. New Right ideas have also been criticised as ruling class ideology, in that deregulated market competition allows the rich to get richer and the poor to get poorer. The counter argument is that conservatism has sometime shown a genuine interest in the plight of the poor (one nationism), or that New Right doctrines are anti-establishment and egalitarian (supporting meritocracy rather than hierarchy, for example). There are two main viewpoints on this question: one advanced by critics of conservatism and the other by conservatives themselves. Critics usually subscribe to egalitarian ideologies, notably socialism but some may also subscribe to liberalism. From their perspective, conservatism is intrinsically linked to the interests of the propertied and privileged, and this is evident in both conservative values and ideas and also in the practical application of these ideas. Conservatives, by contrast, deny the link between their views and narrow class interest, and argue that their ideas address larger issues, which are beneficial to all elements in society, or, in some cases, address the particular needs of the less well-off.

20.          Liberalism's relationship with democracy is ambivalent although, since the eighteenth century, liberalism has been associated with support for democratic reform, few liberals have endorsed democracy unreservedly. This is reflected in the dual nature of liberal democracy, which reflects an endorsement of democratic rule but also a fear of unrestrained popular power. Liberals have supported democracy for a variety of reasons. These include that in establishing a system of public accountability it protects the individuals against over-mighty government; that political participation, in the form of voting or holding public office, promotes personal self-development and political education; that political equality in the form of universal adult suffrage ensures formal equality amongst individuals; and that wide and equal access to policy formulation generates equilibrium amongst the competing groups in society. However, liberal concerns about democracy include that it is inherently collectivist and so may be insensitive to individual needs and interests; that it results in a tyranny of the majority that threatens individual rights; and that democratic pressures are often associated with an increase in economic and social intervention which undermines the fragile balance of the market economy. This ambivalence is evident in liberal democracy's attempt to balance popular political participation against the protection of individual rights. There are two main perspectives on this question: one, advanced by liberals themselves, which highlights the compatibility between liberalism and democracy, and the other, advanced by some liberals and by critics of liberalism, which suggests the incompatibility between liberalism and democracy. The former position emphasises the benefits of democracy in achieving core liberal aims, such an individual freedom, limited government personal development. On the other hand, some liberals have emphasised the basic tension between democracy and individualism. Critics of liberalism, often socialists and usually Marxist, have gone further and suggested that liberalism reflects capitalist class interests and so is concerned to keep democracy at bay.

21.          There is much evidence that the history of socialism has been marked by a retreat from traditional principles. Early or nineteenth-century socialism was characterised by fundamentalist and often revolutionary principles. These were associated with ideas such as common ownership and absolute equality achieved through the abolition and replacement of capitalism. Marxism and anarcho-communism were the clearest expressions of this form of socialism. The advent of evolutionary or parliamentary socialism from the late nineteenth century onwards can be seen as a retreat from traditional principles in that it resulted in an accommodation with liberal constitutionalism, political pluralism and electoral democracy. Traditional principles were further undermined by the advent of revisionist socialism in the mid-twentieth century. Social democracy came to practise the politics of social justice rather than the politics of ownership, collectivist principles being replaced by an emphasis on redistribution and welfare, meaning that social democracy increasingly overlapped with modern liberalism. Further retreats can be associated with the collapse of communism, and therefore the declining significance of Marxism, in the 1989-91 period, and the renewal of revisionism in the 1980s and 1990s which witnessed either the modernisation of social democracy or its replacement by 'third way' ideas and positions that have a post-socialist character. Level 2 responses should at least recognise the significance of the transition from fundamentalist to revisionist ideas. Level 3 responses should demonstrate a broad grasp of trends within socialist ideology and give clear attention to the principles that characterise each. There are two main perspectives on this question. Many socialists and some of their critics would argue that the history of socialism has been marked by a process of revisionism, with core principles such as equality, cooperation and common ownerships being re-defined or marginalised through the transition from communism to social democracy and later to ‘new’ social democracy. Some neorevisionists, on the other hand, argue that socialism has changed only in relation to means and not ends. What has been abandoned is not a model of socially just and equal society but the traditional methods through which such a society was to be brought about. Common ownership, for example, was only a means of promoting greater equality, and not a particularly effective one at that.
22. Conservatism has often been criticised as an ideology of the privileged and prosperous, although its supporters have strenuously denied this. Critics have linked conservatism to the interests of the privileged and the prosperous in a number of ways, including the following. By extolling the virtues of tradition and arguing against change, conservatives uphold the interests of traditional elites. Similarly, they have upheld the importance of authority and argued that societies are naturally hierarchical, hierarchy supposedly working to the benefit of all as everyone knows their 'station in life'.
One Nation conservatism has been criticised for perpetrating a form of enlightened self- interest, in that it only advocates reform in order to prevent the possibility of social revolution.
New Right conservatism has also been associated with the interests of the privileged and prosperous, in that free-market economics legitimises social inequality, providing opportunities (through tax cuts and deregulation) for the rich to get richer, while the poor (through spending cuts and the ‘rolling back’ of welfare) get poorer
However, conservatives roundly reject these accusations. Supporters of One Nation conservatism argue that it attends to the interests of all groups in society, but particularly the poor and less well-off. It does this through emphasising paternalism and social duty, especially the obligation of the prosperous and privileged to care for the less fortunate. New Right conservatives argue that, being based on a belief in individualism and strict meritocracy, their ideas are orientated around all members of society and not merely the prosperous or privileged. In this view, free-market economics provides opportunities not merely for the rich to get richer but the for the poor to become less poor, as everyone benefits from the increased vigour, dynamism and efficiency of the market economy. Similarly, all members of society benefit from the maintenance of order and a tough approach to crime.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Limited knowledge of relevant criticisms of conservatism
Limited knowledge of relevant defences of conservatism
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Clear explanation of relevant criticisms of conservatism
Clear explanation of relevant defences of conservatism
Awareness of the relevance of conservative sub-traditions to either or both criticisms or defences

23. Socialism has traditionally been associated with the goal of the common ownership of wealth. However, the extent to which this is true varies in different forms of socialism. Fundamentalist socialists practise the 'politics of ownership', in the sense that they are profoundly critical of private property and their model of socialism is grounded in a belief in common ownership. They criticise private property because it is unjust, because it breeds acquisitiveness and so is morally corrupting, and because it fosters conflict in society, particularly between property owners and the property-less. This has encouraged fundamentalist socialists such as Marxists, to call for the abolition of private property, common ownership having the advantage that it ensures fairness (through, potentially, absolute social equality) and fosters fraternity and social solidarity. Such thinking clearly influenced twentieth-century communists, encouraging them to construct centrally planned economies based on state collectivisation.

However, revisionist socialists or social democrats have placed much less emphasis on common ownership. Where they have supported common ownership it has been in the more limited and specific form of nationalisation, usually focused on the so-called 'commanding heights' of the economy (major industries such as coal, steel, electricity and gas). This led to the construction of mixed economies rather than state collectivisation. Moreover, social democrats increasingly distance themselves from the 'politics of ownership', embracing instead the 'politics of social justice', in which socialism is defined by the narrowing of social inequality within a still largely privately-owned economy. So-called neo-revisionists since the 1980s have taken this trend even further, at times supporting privatisation and regarding questions of ownership as of no significance.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Awareness of the nature of common ownership
Limited knowledge of socialist arguments in favour of common ownership
Limited knowledge of socialist reservations about wholesale common ownership
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Clear explanation of socialist arguments in favour of common ownership
Clear explanation of socialist reservations about wholesale common ownership
Ability to evaluate the significance these contrasting positions within socialism

24. Liberalism is deeply divided over the role for the state. Classical liberals believe that the state is at best a necessary evil and should therefore fulfil only a minimal role. This means that the state should merely lay down the conditions for orderly existence and leave other issues in the hands of private individuals and businesses. The minimal state should thus maintain social order, enforce contracts and provide defence against external attack, but it should not interfere in economic and social life. Such thinking is underpinned by strong support for individual responsibility and free market economics.
However, modern liberals believe in an enabling state rather than a minimal state. This state should intervene in both social and economic life. Modern liberals thus defend welfare and redistribution on the basis of equality of opportunity, arguing that if individuals and groups are disadvantaged by their social circumstances, the state has a social responsibility to reduce or remove these disadvantages. Similarly, modern liberals have supported economic management on Keynesian grounds, arguing that the image of a self-regulating free market is a myth, and that only government intervention can ensure that market economies deliver sustainable growth and keep unemployment low. Nevertheless, modern liberals also recognise the need to limit social and economic intervention. They believe that the state should help individuals to help themselves and that although economic management may be necessary, the economy should basically operate according to market principles.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Limited knowledge of classical liberal arguments in favour of a minimal state
Limited knowledge of modern liberal arguments in favour of state intervention
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
Clear explanation of classical liberal arguments in favour of a minimal state
Clear explanation of modern liberal arguments in favour of state intervention
Ability to evaluate the significance of these positions within liberalism

25. However, anarchism differs from socialist collectivism in at least two senses. First, socialist collectivism has often (but not always) been associated with statist beliefs, reflecting the idea that the state articulates the collective interest of society. This is expressed most clearly in the social democratic tradition, but even Marxists believe in a temporary proletarian state. More importantly, socialist collectivism clearly conflicts with forms of anarchism that derive from liberal individualism, commonly known as individualist anarchism. Thus, although in one guise anarchism can be seen as an extreme form of collectivism, in another it is an extreme form of individualism, and embraces self-striving and the market.
A threshold Level 2 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Awareness, if possibly implicit, of the nature of socialist collectivism
• Limited knowledge of links between anarchism and socialist collectivism
• Limited knowledge of forms of anarchism that are unrelated to socialist collectivism
A threshold Level 3 response will typically exhibit the following features:
• Sound understanding of the nature of socialist collectivism
• Clear explanation of links between anarchism and socialist collectivism
Clear explanation of forms of anarchism that are unrelated to socialist collectivism

26. The defining feature of anarchism is the notion that a stateless society is both desirable and practicable, certainly not a utopian fantasy. The basis for this is a theory of human nature that stresses the capacity of people for unregulated social harmony. For collectivist anarchists, this is grounded in optimistic assumptions about human nature, disposed as it is towards social solidarity, human sympathy and spontaneous cooperation, humans being essentially social creatures. However, this relies more on the idea of human ‘plasticity’ than on a belief in ‘natural goodness’. Individualist anarchists, for their part, argue that natural order will arise in the absence of the state because of both the tendency of people to respect one another as rational creatures, and the calculation that long-self interest is better served by mutualism and cooperation, than by rivalry and conflict. In the case of both collectivist and individualist anarchism, stress is also placed on social institutions that promote order and stability, notably common ownership and the market mechanism.
Nevertheless, critics of anarchism reject the idea of statelessness as a mere fantasy. Liberals and others do so on the basis that, as individuals, humans are inevitably motivated by egoistical concerns, meaning that a stateless society would degenerate into unending conflict and strife, as social contract theorists so graphically pointed out.


27. The New Right can be seen to be internally divided in a number of ways, deriving from the fact that the liberal New Right draws inspiration essentially from classical liberalism, while the conservative New Right draws inspiration from traditional conservatism, specifically pre-Disraelian conservatism. This leads to deep tensions in relation to their views of human nature, society and morality. The liberal New Right believes in egoistical individualism, an atomistic model of society and the values of competition and personal self-striving. The conservative New Right believes in the psychological, moral and intellectual imperfection of human beings, embraces an organic model of society and emphasises values such as discipline, authority, deference and national allegiance.
Nevertheless, the New Right can be seen to be internally coherent in a political sense and in terms of the compatibility of its goals. All members of the New Right are capable of accepting a strong but minimal state, even though the grounds on which they support a minimal state or a strong state may diverge. For instance, supporters of the liberal New Right emphasise the dynamism of a market economy and its tendency towards equilibrium, while supporters of the conservative New Right see the market economy as a vital source of social discipline.

28. Classical liberals have often argued that modern liberalism has abandoned individualism and embraced collectivism. The basis of this view is that modern liberals have been prepared to support an interventionist or enabling state, abandoning the idea that state intervention always implies a contraction of individual freedom. This can be seen, for example, in the tendency of the welfare state to engender dependency and to sap initiative, and also in the fact that Keynesian economic policies impose regulations that inhibit economic freedom.
On the other hand, modern liberals argue that their ideas and theories are rooted in individualism, even though individualism has had to be rethought due to changing economic and social circumstances. Although they may have modified ideas such as egoism and self-reliance, they have only done so to a qualified extent. In this light, the modern liberal justification for collectivism (understood to imply state intervention) is limited and conditional, in particular the purpose of the state is to help individuals to help themselves. Collectivism is therefore endorsed as a means to an end (to enable individuals to make wise moral choices in their own interests), rather than as an end in itself.

29. There are, on the face of it, deep divisions within anarchism about the nature of the future anarchist society. These differences derive from the fact that anarchism is essentially an arena of overlap between liberal individualism and socialist collectivism, implying that stateless may either have a liberal or a socialist orientation. Individualist anarchists, drawing on liberalism, highlight the virtues of private property and the market economy, in the most extreme cases embracing anarcho-capitalism, in which all economic and social arrangements are determined by market competition. By contrast, collectivist anarchists favour communal organisation and support the collectivisation of wealth. In the extreme view, this leads to support for anarcho-communism, in which all wealth is owned in common and society is organised on the basis of decentralisation and self-management.
However, all anarchists agree that future anarchist society will have certain common features, notably the absence of law and systems of rule, allowing individuals to enjoy absolute freedom and to take responsibility for their own lives and circumstances. Even though anarchists may have advanced very different economic models, they are united in terms of the larger moral and political characteristics of the future society.

30. Socialism has traditionally been associated with a belief in social equality, or equality of outcome. Social equality has been favoured for a number of reasons, including the following:
• It upholds justice or fairness, as inequality usually reflects social injustices rather than individual inadequacies.
• It fosters community and cooperation.
• It helps to ensure that humans are fulfilled and satisfied creatures, as their basic needs are properly satisfied.
Fundamentalist socialism has endorsed absolute social equality, in the form of the common ownership of productive wealth or communism. This implies a radical emphasis on moral incentives rather than economic incentives. However, some may argue that fundamentalist socialism is defined more by the desire to collectivise wealth (the politics of ownership) than by a commitment to greater equality (the politics of social justice.
Revisionist socialists have modified their commitment to equality of outcome in a number of ways, including the following:
• Absolute social equality has been abandoned in favour of relative social equality and the need to maintain economic incentives.
• Social equality has significantly been replaced by the idea of equality of opportunity, emphasising a ‘level playing field’ rather than more equal social outcomes.
• This trend has been taken furthest by neo-revisionists or supporters of ‘new’ social democracy who have been willing to tolerate significant levels of social inequality and have advanced alternative ideas such as asset-based egalitarianism.

31. The idea that anarchists ‘demand the impossible’ relates to the utopianism that lies at the heart of anarchist ideology. This is reflected in the belief that it is possible to construct a stable and peaceful stateless society in which people enjoy unrestricted freedom and absolute equality (at least in political terms).
Anarchists argue that their vision of the future stateless society is achievable on the grounds of their theory of human nature and their theory of social institutions.
At the heart of anarchism lies a belief in the unlimited possibilities of human and social development. Human beings are not perfect, but they are perfectible: in appropriate social conditions, spontaneous harmony or natural order are realisable, either because of people’s propensity for sociability and cooperation or for principled and rational conduct. For collectivist anarchists, such propensities are fostered by conditions of statelessness and common ownership, while for individualist anarchists they are achieved through unregulated capitalism. Critics of anarchism argue that both such theories of human nature and such high optimism about social or economic institutions is entirely misplaced. Conservatives, for example, emphasise that human beings are imperfect and imperfectable, rejecting the idea that human nature is endlessly socially malleable. Liberals, for their part, argue that natural order is impossible because egoism will always lead to instability and strife.

32. Conservatism has been portrayed as a philosophy of imperfection in a number of ways. These include the following:
Conservatives have viewed human beings as morally imperfect, driven by non-rational drives and instincts.
• They have viewed human beings as psychologically limited and dependent creatures, drawn to the known, the familiar and the tried and tested.
• They have regarded human rationality as unreliable, the world being more complex than the human intellect is able to cope with.
Traditional conservatives have been greatly influenced by these assumptions about imperfection. They have, for example, inclined traditional conservatives to place their faith in tradition, view authority and a ‘tough’ stance on law and order as desirable, and to believe that society has an organic structure. One Nation conservatives have, in some ways, modified the emphasis on moral imperfection, being more willing to explain crime and social disorder in terms of social, rather than individual, factors.

The liberal New Right, on the other hand, has largely dispensed with the idea of innate human imperfection. Although neoliberals believe that humans are self-interested, they place a strong emphasis on reason and therefore on the politics of principle.
Similarly, atomistic individualism implies that humans are by no means limited and dependent creatures, but have a pronounced capacity for self-reliance.
However, the conservative New Right remains faithful to traditional conservative assumptions about imperfection, notably in terms of moral imperfection and therefore the need to strengthen order, discipline and authority, and in terms of psychological imperfection and thus the need for traditional values and a strong national identity.

33. Democracy, in simple terms, is rule by the people, implying both popular participation & government in the public interest.
Liberals have been ambivalent about the benefits of democracy. Very few liberals, and none in the modern period, reject democracy out of hand, on the other hand, no liberals accept democracy uncritically. Amongst the benefits of democracy, from a liberal perspective, are the following:
• Democracy defends freedom, by ensuring public accountability and allowing citizens to protect themselves against tyrannical government and unpopular policies. This is an argument that has been particularly stressed by classical liberals.
• By broadening and deepening popular participation, democracy has educational benefits, serving the needs of self-development and creating a better informed and more politically engaged citizenry. This argument has been popular particularly amongst modern liberals.
• Democracy has the benefit that, in giving a political voice to all groups and interests in society, it tends to promote consensus and thereby underpins political stability.
Liberals have nevertheless feared ‘excessive’ democracy for a number of reasons. These include the following:
• Democracy may lead to the ‘tyranny of the majority’, in that the principle of majority rule may either lead to the suppression of minority rights or individual freedom, or may create a culture of dull conformism, based on the unfounded assumption that the majority is always right.
• Democracy is necessarily collectivist, in that it places political authority in the hands of ‘the people’, thereby ignoring the needs and interests of individual citizens.
• Democratic systems that widen access to political influence tend to be characterised by a growth in interventionism and the problem of over-government. such interventionism may weaken the efficiency of market capitalism, disadvantaging the mass of citizens in the long run.
The intellectual skills relevant to this question are as follows:
• The ability to analyse and explain liberal arguments for and against democracy.
• The ability to evaluate liberal arguments related to democracy.
Synopticity in this question refers to the following:
• The ability to recognise that liberal ideology has been deeply divided over the issue of freedom, recognising both its benefits & its dangers, although these divisions do not neatly fit into the divide between classical & modern liberalism.


34. Major divisions have long existed within socialism over the means through which it can, and should, be achieved. In simple terms, this relates to rival revolutionary and reformist ‘roads to socialism’.
The revolutionary road to socialism envisages an abrupt and complete break with established, usually brought about through a mass uprising and the exercise of political violence. Socialists opted for revolution on a variety of grounds, including the following:
• Before political democracy had arrived, revolution was the only practicable way of bringing about political change.
• Because it was believed that the state responds only to the interests of the economically dominant class, a peaceful and constitutional transition to socialism through reform is impossible.
• Revolution allowed all vestiges of the capitalist system, and its supporters, to be removed.
The alternative ‘democratic’ road to socialism has been supported by socialists for a variety of reasons. Including:
• The arrival of political democracy led to the certain victory of social democracy, because the working class constituted the majority in society.
• The working class would vote for socialist parties because socialism is in their interests.
• Once elected, socialist parties would bring about a gradual, peaceful & inevitable transition from capitalism to socialism..
However, socialist disagreements about the means of achieving socialism have largely been abandoned. Revolution has had declining significance within socialism since the late nineteenth century, particularly in more developed capitalist societies. After 1945, the revolutionary road was widely considered to be unviable. The collapse of communism in the revolutions of 1989-91 effectively led to the demise of revolutionary communism, meaning that socialists have largely ceased to disagree about the issue of means. The advent of anti-capitalist activism has nevertheless sometimes been seen to indicate revived interest in radical or even revolutionary political strategies.
The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are as follows:
• The ability to analyse and explain socialist views about the means of achieving socialism.
• The ability to evaluate the viability of revolutionary & reformist means. Synopticity refers to the following:
The ability to recognise the nature and significance of differences between revolutionary socialism and reformist socialism, and an awareness of the declining significance of these differences.

35. Free market liberalism is the belief that the economy works best when left alone by government.
This allows for very limited social and economic intervention, based on the assumption that unregulated capitalism tends toward long-run equilibrium and general prosperity.
Anarchism can be seen to be linked to free market liberalism, through individualist anarchism in general and anarcho-capitalism in particular. Individualist anarchism generally uses liberal arguments related to the implications of market exchange to explain how the anarchist society of the future would work. Anarcho-capitalism resembles free market liberalism in that it embraces the same economic theories and very similar political principles, merely taking these one step further by applying them to all goods and services including those that would be covered by the liberal minimal state.
On the other hand, anarchism does not resemble free market liberalism in two respects:
• Free market liberalism highlights the need for a minimal state and recognises the problem of market
failure, neither of which are accepted by anarcho-capitalists.
• Supporters of collectivist anarchism fundamentally reject the free market and all forms of capitalist organisation but especially the institution of private property.
The intellectual skills that are relevant to this question are as follows:
• The ability to analyse and explain the ideas of free market liberalism and the relevant anarchist traditions.
• The ability to evaluate the extent to which anarchism resembles and also differs from free market liberalism. Synopticity in this question refers to the following:
• The ability to recognise competing traditions within anarchism and their very different relationship to free market liberalism.

36.  Tension between support for community and a commitment to the individual is one of the recurrent themes in conservative ideology, but it has been accentuated by the rise of the New Right. Support for community stems from the belief that humans are security-seeking creatures and from the idea of an organic society; this is taken furthest in One Nation or paternalistic conservatism, where society is seen to be bound together by mutual duties obligations, reflected in social reform and qualified welfarism. The rival commitment to the individual is evident in libertarian conservatism and is best reflected in the liberal New Right. It has justified rolling back the state and the promotion of individual responsibility to counter dependency

 37. Conservatism has been concerned with both social stability and economic freedom reflecting rival organicist and libertarian trends within the ideology, although the balance between the two depends on the dominant tradition at any point in time. The concern with social stability grows out of the belief in an organic society, which highlights the need to protect and strengthen the fragile fabric of society. This communitarian stance is reflected in paternalist or One Nation conservatism which endorses social welfare and economic intervention on the grounds that social and political stability require that economic inequality be contained. Authoritarian tendencies within conservatism, reflected for example in neo-conservatism, draw from the same organicist concern with social stability, this time imposed from above through the restoration of authority.
The rise of the New Right, and particularly neo-liberalism, has resulted in greater concern with economic freedom, in some respects at the expense of social stability.
The libertarianism of neo-liberal conservatism derives from its emphasis on free market economics and rugged individualism. The restless dynamism of the market and the dismantling of welfare supports arguably threaten the stable organic structure of society.


38.  Conservative ideology has encompassed rival paternalistic and libertarian traditions, which, in modern politics, have been evident in conflict between One Nation ideas and those of the New Right, particularly neoliberalism. Paternalism literally means to act in a fatherly manner, implying that those with wisdom or experience should provide support and guidance for those who are unable to look after themselves. The roots of conservative paternalism lie in the fear that widening social inequality poses a threat to the established order and to traditional institutions. It is therefore prudent for the powerful and propertied to attend to the conditions of the less well-off. Paternalism is also underpinned by a stress upon social duty, reflecting both the belief that the wealthy are privileged or fortunate in that they do not acquire property through their own efforts and that the poor are the 'less fortunate' and are therefore deserving of support. The rival, libertarian tradition, is rooted in the belief that unregulated capitalism both promotes economic well being in that it is self-regulating, and that it serves as a form of social discipline, imposing economic constraints upon the workings classes. The free-market or libertarian position also reflects a deep fear of the state based upon the threat it poses to rights, particularly property rights, and its tendency towards growth and aggrandisement. The rise of the New Right can be interpreted as establishing the ascendancy of libertarian ideas over paternalistic one within conservatism.

39. 'One nation' principles are linked to a concern for the interests of the less well-off, reflected in a desire to counter the trend towards widening social inequality. They underpin a form of Tory welfarism. Conservatives have supported 'one nation' principles for both pragmatic and moral reasons. The pragmatic basis for one nationism is the fear that widening social inequality will threaten the established order by fuelling pressure for social revolution. The moral case for one nationism resides in paternalism, a belief in guidance and support being exercised for the benefit of those who cannot act in their own best interests.
However, the rise of new right theories and ideas has substantially marginalised 'one nationism'. This has occurred because atomistic individualism both links welfare to the problem of dependency and suggests that the poor are 'undeserving' in that they are the architects of their own misfortune.


40.  A full and insightful analysis of tendencies within anarchism. Liberal individualism is clearly explained in terms of its belief in the primacy of the individual over social groups and collective bodies. Individualist anarchism is rooted in individualism and develops the principle to its logical extreme by regarding any form of political authority as an offence against the individual. However, collectivist anarchists, whose ideas stem from socialist theories and assumptions, reject individualism, seeing it as a recipe for conflict and competition, and thus as a justification for government as the only means of guaranteeing order. The theories and implications of the rival anarchist traditions are explored carefully and accurately.

41. Anarchism can be seen as an example of both individualism and collectivism, in that it encompasses two contrasting traditions, individualist anarchism and collectivist anarchism.
Individualist anarchism is an extreme form of liberalism which is based on the idea of the sovereign individual and favours private property and (usually) free market economics.
Collectivist anarchism is an extreme form of socialism which is based on the idea of social solidarity and (usually) favours collective ownership.
Both traditions encompass a range of differing theories and models of the future anarchist society.

42. Political creeds may be thought to be utopian in one of two senses.
First, they may be creeds whose goal is the establishment of a perfect or ideal society. Such societies are usually characterised by absolute freedom, unregulated social harmony and universal economic well-being. Utopian creeds, in this sense, are based on highly optimistic assumptions about human nature.
Second, a utopian creed may be simply unrealistic or impracticable, based on unachievably optimistic goals.
Anarchists would proudly proclaim that their creed is utopian in the first sense, based as it is on the goal of a stateless yet peaceful and stable society. This goal is rooted in clearly optimistic assumptions about human nature, stressing either a strong propensity for sociability or heightened rationality. Anarchism can be seen as entirely utopian, the only qualifications on utopianism being in relation to anarchists, such as Proudhon, who believed that statelessness can only be achieved gradually through the progressive shrinkage of state authority.
Anarchism is viewed as utopian in a second sense by its critics. For example, liberals and conservatives reject the anarchist conception of human nature as fundamentally flawed and unbalanced, while Marxists have argued that anarchism gives no serious attention to political strategy, placing its faith instead in the deluded hope of a spontaneous popular uprising.

43. Modern liberalism is a tradition within liberalism that is distinguished from classical liberalism by its rejection of the idea of a minimal state and limited govt.
Nevertheless, there are significant tensions within modern liberalism over the proper role of the state. Modern liberals endorse economic and social intervention on various grounds. These include that an emphasis upon human development implies the state should intervene to enable individuals to realise their potential; that a belief that the state should protect individuals from the social evils that may cripple their existence; and that the state is a means of rectifying the unequal opportunities that are implicit within the capitalist system.
However, this only amounts to a qualified endorsement of interventionism. Welfarism is only justified when, through social disadvantage, individuals do not have the capacity to help themselves; its purpose is to expand opportunity and enable individuals to become independent and self-reliant. Similarly, the purpose of economic intervention is not to undermine/replace capitalism but to strengthen it by redressing its weaknesses, particularly its tendency towards long-term unemployment.
Main weakness with the question was a failure to focus on tensions within modern liberalism, candidates instead discussed tensions between modern liberalism and classical liberalism. The latter approach enabled candidates to show understanding, based on the fact that tensions within modern liberalism arise from the survival of certain classical liberal ideas. Strong responses recognised that tension within modern liberalism over the state arises from its qualified endorsement of state intervention, the fact that while it generally favours social welfare and economic management, it also recognises that intervention can be 'excessive' in that it can threaten liberty, individual responsibility and prosperity. Modern liberals, in short, remain liberals. As explained in the specification, the term modern liberal refers to an ideological tradition within liberalism rather than to modern-day liberalism.

44. State intervention refers to ways in which the state exerts influence over economic and social life, its most common forms being social welfare and economic management.
Modern liberalism differs from classical liberalism because of its rejection of laissez-faire and the minimal state. The modern liberal case for state intervention has both a social and an economic dimension.Socially, modern liberals have been influenced by the theory of positive freedom and the principle of equality of opportunities. Positive freedom defines freedom in terms of personal growth and self-realization. In this light, poverty and social disadvantage are seen as constraints on freedom, as they impair the individual’s ability to flourish and achieve his or her potential. Social welfare thus widens individual freedom in this positive sense. Equality of opportunity is also significant; in that it commits modern liberalism to creating social conditions in which all individuals have the capacity to realize their potential by enjoying at least a social minimum. This also requires welfare support. 
The economic case for state intervention is based on the Keynesian belief that capitalism is not self-regulating: it needs to be managed by government (demand management) to avoid a spiralling down into depression and unemployment.
However, the modern liberal case for intervention is always a qualified one; intervention can be ‘excessive’. In the social/welfare sphere, the purpose of intervention is to help people to help themselves, not to rob them of dignity and self-respect. The modern liberal preference is thus for autonomous individuals to make their own decisions and take responsibility for their own lives. Intervention is only justified when social injustice makes this impossible. In economic life, intervention is designed to make capitalism work, not to replace capitalism with a state controlled economy.

45. Evolutionary and revolutionary socialists clearly disagree about the means of achieving socialism.
Revolutionary socialists reject electoral and constitutional politics, for Marxists on the basis that the state is inextricably bound to the interests of capitalism and ruling class.
By contrast, they have regarded the revolution as inevitable, stemming from the underlying contradictions of society, and in Leninism had developed theories about revolution that can be led and organised.
Evolutionary socialists, on the other hand, have either adopted a mutual theory of the state or argued that political democracy empowers the electoral majority and so enables the working class to gain control of state power.
For Fabian socialists this implied the 'inevitability of gradualism'.
However, evolutionary and revolutionary socialists came to disagree equally fundamentally about the nature of socialism itself.
Revolutionary socialists typically called for the overthrow and replacement of capitalism by a qualitatively different social system based on common ownership and, in twentieth-century communism, central planning.
Evolutionary socialists modify their critique of capitalism, arguing for reform within a capitalist system to bring about greater distributive equality and social justice. Socialism thus came to be defined in terms of equality rather than ownership.

46. A commitment to equality is widely seen as the defining feature of socialism; equality is certainly the core value within socialist ideology. Socialists tend to support social equality rather than merely equality of opportunity or formal equality.
They support equality for a variety of reasons. The Socialist case for social equality includes the belief that equality promotes co-operation and strengthens social bonds (inequality by contrast is associated with conflict and instability); that equality ensures justice while the principal manifestations of inequality derive not from unequal potential or talent but from unequal treatment by society; and that equality allows for personal fulfilment by ensuring that at least the basic needs of all people are satisfied.
However, socialists have supported different forms of equality and, over time, have revised their commitment towards it. The Communist or Marxist tradition is the most strongly egalitarian in that it endorses the idea of absolute social equality, achieved through a system of collective ownership. Social democrats, on the other hand, support relative social equality, brought about through welfare and redistribution, thereby acknowledging the continuing need for private property and economic incentives. 'New' social democrats, neo-revisionists or supporters of the 'third way' have, to a greater of lesser extent, abandoned the idea of social equality in favour of equality of opportunity or asset-based egalitarianism.

47. The 'inevitability of gradualism' is a Fabian socialist idea that suggests that evolutionary or democratic methods tactics will eventually lead to the triumph of socialism over capitalism. Parliamentary socialist believed in the 'inevitability of gradualism' because of they believed that the logic of political democracy favoured socialism. The working class constitute a numerical majority and will therefore become an electoral majority. They will vote for socialist parties because socialism is the 'home' of the working class. Once in power, socialist parties will implement socialism peacefully and constitutionally. This was backed up by assumptions about the intellectual and moral superiority of socialism over capitalism. The failure of gradualism can be explained by reference to the shrinkage of the working class as an electoral force; the capacity of capitalism to 'deliver the good' (improve working class living standards); the bias of the capitalist state against socialism; and the entrenched power of business interests, particularly in a global capitalist system. 

1 comment:

  1. Wow, this has saved me so much time! Thank you so, so much!

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