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American Politics & Ideology

Each question needs to be responded to in an organized, 500-word essay.

1.Explain the differences between Liberalism and Conservatism. Does ideology really make a difference in the United States today? How does this affect the two-party system?

2. Choose a political ideology other than Liberalism or Conservatism (Marxism, Socialism, Fascism, etc.) and research its history in the United States.

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1. Liberalism vs. Conservatism

Liberalism at its simplest meaning is the belief that in a free society, liberty and equal rights are most important (Koener, 1985). As such, liberals promote the maximum possible freedom one can have and it is also no surprise that they advocate tolerance and open-mindedness. Conservatism is a socio-political philosophy that sees the importance of traditional and essential social institutions to maintain society and the status qou. The purpose is to ensure continuity and stability which can only be achieved by controlled, gradual and planned activities/change. In a way, it is a kind of attitude that believes in preservation of society the way that it is where the state of society is assumed to be its most ideal & effective form (Riley, 1990).

In American politics, it seems pretty clear cut that generally, the GOP or Republicans are conservatives. They believe in preserving US institutions and the status qou. The Democrats on the other hand have views that fall under the general heading of liberalism, promoting change and individual freedoms above the preservation of traditional American institutions. Both parties believe that their views are the right way to govern and lead a nation, to secure the future of America and its people. But there are varied shades of liberalism and conservatism and not all versions are the same. Some liberals are hard-line progressives - those who are actively promoting radical social change and some liberals can consider extra-progressive views as dangerous. Some conservatives are extremely radical in their views of government, seeing any form of change as detrimental to the system.

I would say that ideology makes a huge difference in the political system. When politicians work, it is their ideology that guides their actions and ideology becomes that standard they refer to when making decisions about legislation and the future of the country. Ideology is important; it is the perspective from which ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides insight, information and advise in putting together 2 500-word essays on the 2 questions listed in the original posting (see above); one on the differences between Liberalism and Conservatism and the other on the history of a political ideology in the US. References are listed. A word version of the solution is also attached.

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