To What Extent Is Conservatism a Philosophy of Imperfection? Essay

1678 Words Feb 19th, 2016 7 Pages
Conservatism does not have one single viewpoint or stance on human nature or imperfection as Conservatism as a whole encompasses different strands or beliefs within it. For example One Nation conservatives have a different philosophy on human imperfection than New Right conservatives do. One Nation conservatives hold the belief that we as humans are: greedy and have a limited capacity for altruism, a complex mix of emotions and contradictory motivations making us irrational, not totally consistent and are at balance the majority of the time with corruption. They believe that our inherent imperfect human nature stems from original sin, the Christian Belief. This shows a wholesome negative outlook on human nature. The New Right on the other …show more content…
They believe that because of this, greed is now engrained in our human nature, meaning that crime does not come from inequality or social disadvantage. The latter viewpoint of crime coming as a result of social disadvantage and equality is one held by socialists and liberals, this also means that liberals and socialists believe in reform and the prospect of development, which conservatives do not. For example, they thinkj the only way people can be forced to act in a socially acceptable way is to avoid their violent and anti-social impulses is through use of the law and tough punishments as deterrents. Shown by Conservative’s backing of long prison sentences and the use of corporal/capital punishment rather than the liberal/socialist concept of reform and belief rehabilitation. As well as law and order, the belief in morally flawed humans can also be linked to the idea of organic society, as a result of their belief in society as a living entity, meaning that because everyone has a role in life, it allows society to adapt to changes and also to correct the consequences of bad things caused by human imperfection, for example murder or stealing.

Finally in terms of the traditional conservative viewpoint of human nature, is the idea that people are intellectually flawed. Conservatives have traditionally believed that the world is too complex

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