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Conservatism

Hello guys,

I read recently on Wikipedia the article about conservatism and it helped me understand why I'm not too fond of it. Here are the themes developed in this article:

Tradition
According to Michael Oakeshott, "To be conservative ... is to prefer the familiar to the unknown, to prefer the tried to the untried, fact to mystery, the actual to the possible, the limited to the unbounded, the near to the distant, the sufficient to the superabundant, the convenient to the perfect, present laughter to utopian bliss." Such traditionalism may be a reflection of trust in time-tested methods of social organisation, giving 'votes to the dead'. Traditions may also be steeped in a sense of identity.

Hierarchy
In contrast to the tradition-based definition of conservatism, some political theorists such as Corey Robin define conservatism primarily in terms of a general defense of social and economic inequality. From this perspective, conservatism is less an attempt to uphold traditional institutions and more "a meditation on—and theoretical rendition of—the felt experience of having power, seeing it threatened, and trying to win it back". Conversely, some conservatives may argue that they are seeking less to protect their own power than they are seeking to protect "inalienable rights" and promote norms and rules that they believe should stand timeless and eternal, applying to each citizen.

Realism
Conservatism has been called a "philosophy of human imperfection" by Noël O'Sullivan, reflecting among its adherents a negative view of human nature and pessimism of the potential to improve it through 'utopian' schemes.[13] The "intellectual godfather of the realist right", Thomas Hobbes, argued that the state of nature for humans was "poor, nasty, brutish, and short", requiring centralised authority

In bold is what I don't like so much. I understand the necessity and the value of it, though.

So in short, I view conservatism as keeping the power. It is a political philosophy giving the upper hand to the people who already have a lot (to lose). Also, the negative view of human nature is a problem in itself due to the Pygmalion effect. I am also suspecting that people are projecting their own negative tendencies on other people because they did not integrate their shadow (Jungian concept). I see it in the upper management in hospitals. They're convinced they're good people, but I don't think they are so much. I think it is because they're not willing to admit to themselves their own dark side (instincts for aggression and so on), so it is coming out unknowingly.

So this could also be mixed with Master morality.

Also, Conservatism is the dominant political philosophy in my country I think. And there is a lot of neuroticism here as well. So I think there might be a correlation between the two (I found a couple of articles on that topic, but did not research thoroughly). If you have wealth, safety and stability then you're very afraid to lose them. I also think that people over-value these 3 values compared to freedom, openness and self-expression for instance.

What do you think?

Hello guys,

here is one of my observations:

Conservatism asks:

  • How are things done usually?
  • How were things done before?
  • What do the people in charge think of this?

Progressivism asks:

  • What is the best solution? (regardless of who have thought about it)
  • How can we improve this?
  • What is the next step?

One looks towards the past and the other towards the future.

Today, one of the lead scientist of the Swiss Covid Task force left the task force because he thought that the governement officials were "20 years behind".  That has also been my observation after having travelled in other countries.

Cheers!

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