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How far Has the Modern Conservative Party Departed from the Thatcherite Agenda - Coursework Example

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Name Class Professor Date There is such a thing as society. How far has the Modern Conservative Party departed from the Thatcherite agenda? I. Executive summary This essay argues that Modern Conservative Party, particularly its new Prime Minister, David Cameron has not totally departed from its predecessor, Margaret Thatcher…
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How far Has the Modern Conservative Party Departed from the Thatcherite Agenda
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Download file to see previous pages The departure of Cameron’s “Big Society” from Thatcher’s “New Right” is more on the semantics but many of the principles of its predecessor remain the same. First, Thatcher’s “there is no such thing as society” did not mean the dissolution of social ties that composed society. She herself clarified that the original intent of the statement was distorted beyond recognition. What she meant by “there is no such thing as society” is to diminish dependency on welfare and to encourage individual members of society to help themselves. In effect, it lessens the burden on public expenditures which contributed to the inflation that beset UK’s economy. Thatcher may have just put it in the wrong way but the intent and purpose of her statement was to strengthen industry by enabling society’s individual members. In effect, Cameron’s “Big Society” is just the same with Thatcherism when it intends cut back public expenditures (though explaining that he is just returning it to 2007 level). It only differs in a way that it encouraged public engagement and volunteerism and by putting up a Big Society fund of ?200M to enhance societal capability (Channel4.com 2011). With regard to the economy, Cameron also adopts the free market system which is precisely what Thatcher asserted despite public criticism during her time. Cameron’s economic policy pronouncements also do not subscribe to Keynesian inflationary measure of pump priming the economy through increased public expenditure. It is only his method that differs from Thatcher because he intends to cut public expenditure which Thatcher was opulent during her term. II. The Conservative party and its ideology The Conservative Party used to be known as Tories that dated back in 1678. It only assumed its present name Conservative Unionist Party in 1912 after it allied with the Liberal Party. Its dominant ideology in the early 20th century was One Nation Conservatism, which was to unite the varying sectors of society (Heywood 2007). Among the esteemed ideologues of the Party was Edmund Burke. Burke was a follower of Adam Smith and his market economy whom Thatcher herself acknowledged to have influenced her liberal economic policy. During the late 19th century, the Conservative Party agreed for a greater representation of the middle class in the parliament. This was contained in the Tamworth Manifesto which was the fundamental political belief of the new Conservative Party. Business also supported the Conservative Party with its coalition with the Liberal Party which made the Party of industry and commerce (Ingle 2008). III. The Thatcherite Agenda: The New Right (1979-1990) Before Margaret Thatcher assumed as the Prime Minister of UK in 1979, UK had been experiencing high unemployment rate under a series of trade union strikes which the media dubbed the “Winter of Discontent” because the Labour led government implemented a freeze on the pay increase of the workers to control the lingering inflation of 20% (Hall and Jacques 1983). Upon assumption of office, Margaret Thatcher implemented her policy programs which are popularly known as “The New Right”. The Thatcherite Agenda was characterised by neo-liberal policy of a market oriented economy and neoconservative policy which emphasises the traditional Tory values of One Nation Conser ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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