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POL101Y1 Lecture Notes - Mike Duffy, Sun Media, Classical Liberalism

Political Science
Course Code
Nelson Wiseman

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Different between classical and contemporary
Conservatism (classical)
Good society= traditional social order
Members of groups not individuals
The wealthy have obligation to link out for the poor, and the poor have a duty to
defer the rich
Rights and obligations link groups of society together on traditional basis
Dignity depends on conforming to the group you belong to--don’t break classes
Nature of government== rights and responsibilities of rulers are derived from
God and tradition
Primary role of state is to ensure social order and status quo and prevent a
breakdown of society
Government has wide scope but doesn’t use it unless it needs to maintain order
The state is superior and more important than society and everyone needs to be
Divine rule of kings
Not necessarily big government, but an authoritative one-government is not
suspect as by classical liberals
In traditional society, it would be natural to have a state church
Most powerful= executive
No separation of church and state
Support from the landed classes, churches, military offices, agents from the
Conservatism(contemporary )
More individualistic than contemporary liberals
The classical liberals
It’s ok fort the state to promote economic goals, but should not be harnessed to
achieve those goals, just provide environment for individual to achieve those, not
get directly involved
Minimal regulation of capitalism
Individuals are responsible for own lives
Don’t promote certain groups, oppose collectivist policies because undermine
personal dignity
Minimal taxes, maximizes personal choice
Moral choice==divided
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