Essay on Conservatism

Political philosophy is the study of particular elements that pertain the government, the political structure, justice and the implementation of the legal code by the authority in charge of the state. The primary objective of political philosophy is to provide answers to queries such the composition of a government, the role played by the government, the legitimacy of the government that in power and the role played by the citizens.

Compared to other political ideologies such as liberalism and socialism, conservatism is not viewed by many as a philosophical ideology. It is a branch of political philosophy that is sympathetic to traditional ideologies in areas such religion, culture among others.[1] It takes two main forms; that is authoritarian conservatism and revolutionary conservatism. Authoritarian conservatism has been termed as reactionary and believes in exerting authority over the masses with or without their consent.[2]

Meanwhile, revolutionary conservatism is more radical despite trying to cover the real nature of a revolutionary character. Conservatisms in this category do not embrace change and prefer retaining the values of a given time in the past by all means.A distinct feature of conservatism is the distrust of the human nature. Most conservatives exercise a lot caution when dealing with other human beings because of the general notion of distrust.

Another key characteristic of conservatism is the ideology that a society should be built on a preset hierarchy. It states that such a hierarchy should be built on principles adopted from our traditions. According to this conservative ideology the human society is too complicated to be developed through social engineering. They believe that human beings are the way are because the traits they possess; moral, cultural and skills are inherited.

Conservatism despite being traditional and different it still has some great influence in the American political system. A good example would be in the manner, which political parties operate. Those who are at the top of the hierarchy tend to have more influence in political matters. The Republican Party has been known to have the highest number of conservatives. When President Bush as in power a lot of his policies aligned with the fiscal conservatism school of thought. Another great example was the failure by the US Government to ratify the Kyoto Protocol due opposition from American conservative movement.[3]

Formation of institutions in the American political system is also influenced by the conservatism. According to Burke, most social institutions are social arrangements that are formed by patterns that are inherited from our fore fathers.[4] He argues that these social institution need to be maintained since they are very fragile and can be broken easily resulting into anarchy. The biggest threat to these institutions is innovation.

To a great extent this statement is true. Most social institutions formed today in America political system are based on an inherited model. One thing that conservatism does not provide for is innovation and it is something that we cannot avoid. It also does not provide for the conservation of institutions such as Social security and welfare, which help reduce the dependence of the populace o the Aristocracy.

Conservatism also has a great influence in our freedom. Many scholars will argue that conservatism advocates for freedom but forget to note that this freedom is allowed up to a certain level. The level of>>>>>Get a similar, complete and custom essay or email

[1] (Stanlis 2011)

[2] (Hamilton Fall 2015)

[3] (Quiroz 2003)

[4] (Glaser 2003)

Works Cited

Glaser, John Jost. Jack. “Political conservatism as motivated social cognition.” PsycARTICLES, 2003: 339-375.

Hamilton, Andy. “Conservatism.” In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy , by Zalta Edward., Fall 2015.

Quiroz, Pamela. “Defeating Kyoto: The Conservative Movement’s Impact on U.S. Climate Change Policy.” Oxford University Journals, 2003: 348-373.

Stanlis, Peter. Burkean Conservatism. July 7, 2011. (accessed August 1, 2016).



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