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Ideologies Powered By Docstoc

   A discussion of the Major
Ideologies of the Western World
•   What is an ideology?
•   Dominant vs Counter-Ideologies
•   The Components of Ideologies
•   Democratic Ideologies
•   Non-Democratic Ideologies
•   Other Ideologies
     Ideologies: Early Beginnings
•   The French Philosopher Antoine
    Destrutt de Tracy coined the term
    ideologie to mean “the science of
•   During the Enlightenment (18th
    Century), many philosophers in
    France (called philosophes),
    believed that the application of
    human reason (not adherence to
    faith) was needed to deal with social,
    economic and political challenges.
•   Before the Enlightenment, most
    ideologies were primarily religious.
    It was during this period that we
    would see the great debate of faith
    vs. reason.
•   Napoleon Bonaparte called his            Eugene Delacroix’s “Liberty Leading
    political enemies “ideologues”                     The People”
    because they tended to hold liberal
    ideals and anti-religious views. This
    term is still used today
          What is an Ideology?
• What is an ideology?
  Generally speaking, it is a
  value system through which
  we perceive, explain and
  accept the world.
• According to the political
  theorist Robert Dahl, all
  individuals are ideologues in
  the sense that we all map out
  our own interpretations of
  what the world is and how it
  should be.
    What is the role of an Ideology?
• Ideologies present a simplified
  “cause and effect” interpretation of
  a complex world (e.g.“Axis of Evil”
  and the “coalition of the willing)
• They provide a theory of human
  nature that explains basic
  economic, social and political
• Ideologies appear to be moral in
  tone and aspire to perfect our
  behavior (e.g. counter laziness, or
• They are often supported by
  constitutions, manifestos or
  writings (e.g the Communist
• They discuss issues such as
  leadership, political succession
  and electoral behavior
          Dominant Ideologies
• Dominant Ideologies support the
  existing social and political
  arrangements (e.g. Conservatism
  in the United States after 9/11)
• Ideologies that dominate in a
  society are ones that carry the
  message of the elites through the
  Agents of Socialization such as:
• Governments (Political Parties,
  Pressure Groups)
• The Schools
• The Media
• Families and Peer Groups
             Dominant Ideologies
What is the sign that a particular
  ideology is dominating the political
• The majority of the population
  accepts the ideology without
  hesitation (e.g. The Free-market
  system in the United States).
• The most powerful people in the
  country (the elites) accept the
• The existence of a dominate
  ideology allows a society to keep
  subordinate groups in check (e.g.      Anti- Globalization Protestors
  Communists, anarchists, etc) as        Kept in check in Seattle, USA.
  long as they constitute a minority
  in society
• The role of counter ideologies is
  to advance radical reform in
• In Canada, groups such as the
  Marxist-Leninist Party serve such
  a role.
• They normally develop in
  response to a perceived
  inequality in society.
• There main job is to challenge
  the status quo.
• Feminism is certainly an
  example of a counter ideology in
  the extent that it seeks to
  challenge inequalities in the
  workplace based on gender (e.g.
  equal pay for work of equal
  The impact of Counter Ideologies
• It is the stresses that exist between
  dominant ideologies and counter
  ideologies that produce real political
• In fact, the origin of of a dominant
  ideology is usually a counter ideology
• Examples:
• The Russian Revolution of 1917
                                           Tommy Douglas
• The French Revolution of 1789
• The CCF’s plan for medicare
• The “green” counter-ideology of
  fighting Greenhouse gas emissions is
  now a part of mainstream political
       The Major Components of
• The state of human nature
• The role of the individual in
• The role of the state
• The sources and limits of
  political authority
• The preferred economic
  and social order              Iranian President Mahmoud
     Ideologies: Human Nature
• Are human beings born to be
  basically good or basically bad
  (innate), or is behavior the
  result of social conditioning?
• For conservatives, human
  behavior is unchangeable. The
  role of government is to control
  the undesirable consequences
  of human behavior (Thomas
• For Liberals, humans are
  inherently good. As a result, we
  don’t need to be so tightly
  controlled by government
   Ideologies: Role of the Individual
• Is it the role of the individual to
  serve the interests of the
  government, or the role of the
  government to serve the needs of
  the individual?
• With Communism, the welfare of
  the individual is subordinate to the
  interests of the state.
• For Liberals, the role of the
  government is to provide the
  conditions for individual freedom
  (e.g. Constitution guarantees
  individual rights). The rights of the
  individual in many cases takes
  precedence over the rights of the
  state (e.g. private property).

                                          Free Trade and Economic
    Ideologies: Role of the State
• In some ideologies, the state
  is essentially a symbol of evil
  in society (e.g. Anarchism).
  Individual liberty is
  threatened by the existence
  of strong government
  control. This is the theory of
  “Absolute power corrupts
• Most modern ideologies (e.g.
  social democracy) maintain
  that a strong government
  (with limits) is necessary in
  order to maintain social
  order and living standards
  (e.g. public healthcare and     What limits should be placed on individual
  education)                                     Freedom?
      Ideologies: Limits on Political
• In some ideologies (Western
  democracies), political authority is
  derived by the consent of the
  governed (e.g. through elections).
• For fascists and Marxist-Leninists,
  political authority is derived by the
  will of the state or dictators.
  Consensus is needed in order to
  guarantee social order and
• For democrats, consent is needed
  by the people to justify their power.
  The people decide to give up their
  individual power to the state. This is
  also known as the concept of
  political legitimacy.

                                     What limits were placed on their power?
        Ideologies: The Preferred
       Economic and Social Order
• Ideologies have to deal with the
  fundamental question of who
  controls the wealth in society.                     Microsoft’s
  Should wealth be equally shared, or                 Bill Gates
  should some individuals be allowed
  to possess more wealth than
• For communists, private ownership
  is not allowed. They are committed
  to providing an equitable
  distribution of wealth
• For capitalists, people need to
  compete with one another in order
  to have an incentive for material
  gain. Economic and social
  inequities are allowed to exist
                                        Wall Street
           Democratic Ideologies
• The beginnings of democracy can be
  traced back to the Greeks.
• Pericles (495-429 BC) declared that
  ancient Athens (Greece) was a
  democracy because “power rested in
  the hands of the many instead of the
• Aristotle (384-322 BC) wrote in his
  famous work Politics, that direct
  popular government would create
  mob rule. What was needed was
  majority rule with respect for
  individual rights. This would later be   The Trial of Socrates
  known as Constitutional Democracy.
• Socrates and Plato were both very
  critical of democracy since they felt
  that it would produce undesirable
        Democratic Ideologies
• In the 17th, 18th and 19th
  centuries, a series of political
  philosophers would make
  great contributions to our
  present understanding of
  what is democracy such as:
• Thomas Hobbes
• John Locke
• Jean-Jacques Rousseau
• John Stuart Mill
• Alexis de Tocqueville
                                     Jean-Jacques Rousseau
 Democratic Ideologies: Liberalism
• Political Ideologies – The Big Three
  In Canada
• Part 1: Liberalism
• Origins
• In Canada, liberal ideas were key
  factors in establishing the concept
  of responsible government (1830-
• Liberal theories date back to the
  Enlightenment, Ancient Rome
• Early influential liberal thinkers:
  John Locke (life, liberty, property)
  and John Stuart Mill (utilitarian
                                         John Stuart Mill
 Democratic Ideologies: Liberalism
• The 20th Century
• Through two world wars in
  Canada, liberalism emphasized the
  importance of rights (civil and
• Liberals emphasized
  representative democracy
  (legitimate and limited power),
  human rights (Charter of Rights &   Queen Elizabeth signs Canada’s
  Freedoms), and rules of procedure   Charter of Rights and Freedoms
  (parliamentary process, judicial
• Most dominant ideology in this
                                                 Pierre Elliott Trudeau
 Democratic Ideologies: Liberalism
• What Makes A Liberal?
• Liberals stress equality of
  opportunity, reject special
  treatment for those with privilege
• Equality before the law
                                       Barack Obama
• Freedom is a leading value and it
  is pluralistic: freedom of
  association, freedom of religion,
  freedom of assembly
• Liberals are thought to be more
  permissive and open to change
  than Conservatives (e.g. same-
                                        Stephen Lewis
  sex marriage)
 Democratic Ideologies: Liberalism
• Different Kinds of Liberals
• The most common issue that Liberals
  disagree among themselves about is
  how to manage the economy:
   – Egalitarian liberalism – welfare
      state, progressive taxation,
      equalization payments, state
      intervention (left of centre)
   – Libertarian liberalism – rejects
      attempts of state to achieve social   Liberal Prime Minister
      equality by manipulating the          Paul Martin Jr.
      economy (right of centre)
            Key Liberal Principles
• Rule of Law: Protects citizens from tyranny
  by having all people equal under the law
• Responsible Govt: All govt officials are
  accountable to the people (electoral
• Civil Liberties: The freedoms of thought,
  expression, religion and freedom of the
• Constitutionalism: The establishment of a
  specific document that defines and limits
  the powers of government (e.g. the
  Canadian BNA Act)
• Individualism: The role of the govt is to
  serve the interests of the individual so that   Former Prime Minister
  each person can maximize their individual       Lester B Pearson
          Key Liberal Principles
• Majority Rule: Govt decisions are
  made in response to the wishes of
  the majority (not the minority)
• Popular Sovereignty: The source
  of the govt’s power flows from the
• International Co-operation:
  Liberals (economic liberals), calls
  for the elimination of trade barriers
  between nations (e.g. tariffs,
  quotas) in order to promote
  economic growth and international       Adam Smith
          Democratic Ideologies:
• Conservatism
• Defined: from the Latin word
  “conservare” – to keep, guard,
  observe; a commitment to
  preserve tradition while
  recognizing there needs to be
  gradual improvement
• Change is not as important as
  respecting laws and traditions,
  therefore conservatives are
  against radicalism
                                    Edmund Burke
            Democratic Ideologies:
• Types of Conservatism:
• Cultural – wants to enshrine the existing
  or “received” heritage of a nation; may
  reject attempts to change culture; many
  believe in a universal morality while
  others think moral codes should only
  apply within a nation
• Religious – most conservatives believe
  in some type of religion or organized
  faith that is established and has
  centuries of tradition (East and West);
  religious conservative values may
  include referring to God, opposing
        Democratic Ideologies:
• Fiscal – a commitment
  to reducing
  government spending
  and debt; gov’t does
  not have the right to
  run up large debts and
  then throw the burden
  on the taxpayer

                           Senator John McCain
    Key Conservative Principles
• Reverence for the past: Societies
  obtain wisdom from their customs
  and traditions and must respect the
  accomplishments of their ancestors
• Constitutional continuity:
  Constitutions need to be maintained.
  Avoid sudden changes
• Opposition to Revolution:
  Conservatives reject radical change
• The Religious Basis of the State:
  The state has the moral, religious
  character. It is not just political and
             Key Principles Cont’d
• The priority of duties over
  rights: Conservatives
  recognize that individuals have
  personal rights and civic
  duties. They must not forget
  their duties
• Loyalty: Conservatives
  demonstrate loyalty to the
  church, family, school and the
  prime institutions of the nation
• Common Sense and
  Pragmatism: Conservative are       George Bush
         Democratic Socialism
• Political Ideologies – The
  Big Three In Canada
• Part 2: Socialism
• Origins
• “Socialism” was first used
  in late 19th century to
  condemn capitalist
• most early socialists
  believed in the abolition of
  markets, private property,
  and of not treating labour     Tommy Douglas
  as a commodity
• Early influential socialist thinkers:
  Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Francois
  Noel Babeuf (complete economic
  and political equality)
• Most influential thinker was
  arguably Karl Marx, who wrote of
  the class struggle between
  workers and the bourgeoisie
• In Canada, socialist and social
  democratic ideas have been
  expressed mainly by the old CCF
  (Co-Operative Commonwealth
  Federation) and the NDP (New            Karl Marx
  Democratic Party)
     Marxism vs Democratic
• Marxism vs. Democratic Socialism
• General perspectives on class struggle and emphasis
  on the worker are similar
• Marxists believe that class struggle will end only if the
  working class controls the means of production
  (socialism of distribution)
• Social Democrats accept capitalist economies but
  believe in public ownership and state intervention in
  the economy (socialism of economic production)
• Where Marxist Socialists advocate for complete
  control of the economy, Social Democrats believe in
  the democratic process (elections) and accept private
• A Socialist’s Values
• Socialist values prioritize
  social equality above all else,
  including economic freedom
  (contrary to Conservatives and
  many Liberals)
• In Canada, the NDP has been
  primarily concerned with
  social justice issues:            Bob Rae: Former Leader of the
   – Health care, Housing, Public   Ontario NDP
     Education, the Elderly
            Socialism Cont’d
• Socialists believe in a
  strong central state
  with extensive
  government agencies
• Over the last several
  years, social
  democrats have also
  expressed concern
  about U.S. influence
  in our economy (e.g.
  free trade)               Maude Barlow: President of
                            The Council of Canadians
       Non-Democratic Ideologies
•   Fascism in Italy: Benito Mussolini
•   The Beginning
•   Mussolini was heavily influenced by the
    fascist model in Rerum Novarum, written
    by Pope Leo XIII in 1892
•   The state was like a human body (working
    with one mind – no class struggle)
•   In 1919, Mussolini’s fascist party
    participated in Italy’s elections
     – Initial program called for: a democratic
       republic, separation of church & state, a
       national army, progressive taxation on
       inherited wealth
•   As the movement grew in strength, several
    of these were abandoned (e.g. progressive
•   Mussolini exploited fears regarding both
    capitalism and the rise of communism;
    fascism became the “third way”
•   Fascist Reign
•   Mussolini was appointed President of Italy’s
    council by the King in 1922 to avoid further
•   The King still controlled the army, but Mussolini
    operated a coalition gov’t
•   Socialist Deputy Giacomo Matteotti was
    assassinated; shortly after Mussolini accepted
    responsibility for his death and proclaimed a
    dictatorship in which his party was identified as
    the state
•   In the 1930’s, Italy recovered from the Great
    Depression by creating domestic substitutes to
    replace imports and this increased Mussolini’s
•   In 1935, Mussolini invaded Ethiopia (used
    chemical weapons, mustard gas); killed women        Mussolini and Hitler
    and children; creating international sanctions
• Mussolini’s Fall
• Before the war started, Mussolini began an alliance with
  Hitler and passed anti-Semitic laws in 1938
• Allies invaded southern Italy in 1943 and captured
• Nazis helped him escape temporarily and he set up a
  “gov’t” in northern Italy before being captured again and
• Mussolini’s Influence
• The most obvious influence is nationalism
• Mussolini wanted to affirm an Italian identity and restore
• Use of propaganda (believe, obey, fight)
• Fascism (fascismo)
• Definition: a political philosophy or
  movement that promotes nation and
  often race above the individual; a
  centralized autocratic government led
  by a dictator of the extreme right who
  suppresses his opposition (by force)
• Development of Fascism
• A reaction against democratic capitalist economies
  and communism
• Rejected notion of social classes and class conflict
• Embraced idea of national pride
• Legitimacy through strength and power (might
  makes right)
• War for nationalist purposes and unification of race
  becomes glorified
• Had appeal for anti-communists and those upset
  with capitalism
• Control – Economic and Otherwise
• Regulates and controls the means of production
• Economy is run by the state and the wealthiest
• The state is superior to the individual (unlike
• Past greatness must be restored (e.g. Italy & The
  Roman Empire)
• System demands loyalty to a single leader
• Political support came from big business, farmers,
  nationalists, reactionaries, and some World War I
• Is Fascism Still Relevant?
• Although there are numerous
  right-wing parties throughout
  the world, there are no self-
  proclaimed fascist parties
• Neo-Nazis and Mussolini
  sympathizers are often referred
  to as fascists
• Some critics of right wing
  politics consider “corporatism”
  to be fascist in nature: countries
  with large corporations who
  heavily influence a state’s
  economy (U.S., Canada)
• “We are free to believe that this    Neo-Nazi Movement
  is the century of authority.”
• - Benito Mussolini
• Developed by Karl Marx (1818-
• In 1844, Marx met Friedrich
  Engels (social scientist). In
  1847, they wrote the
  Communist Manifesto. The
  central ideas were:
• The abolition of private property
• The re-organization of society
  in which there would no longer
  be a separation of society
  based upon social and
  economic class
• The root cause of the class
  struggle is between those
  who control the Means of
  Production (The
  Bourgeoisie), and those
  who work for them (The
• The Capitalist Mode of
  Production, produces
  social and economic
  inequities that are
  inevitable (e.g. 99% of the
  wealth is controlled by 1%
  of the population).
• For Marx, a
  revolution of the
  workers was
  inevitable whereby
  the Proletariat would
  seize control of the
  means of production
  and produce a more
  egalitarian             The Russian Revolution

  distribution of
• Vladimir Lenin (1870-
  1924) was a Bolshevik
  revolutionary who had
  studied the theories of
  Marx and Engels.                      n

• He developed what would
  later be known as Marxist-
  Leninism; an ideology that
  mixed the economic and
  social theories of
  communism with the            Lenin
  political arrangement of an
  autocratic elite.
• Lenin’s justification for
  dictatorship was based on
  the idea that the common
  classes were not capable
  of successfully delivering
  the central theories of
  Marxism. Democracy
  was not embraced.
• Joseph Stalin would take
  this further!                Lenin and Stalin

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