Political IdeologyCrash Course Government and Politics

 Hi, I'm Craig, and this is Crash Course Governmentand Politics. And today, we're gonna get personal. Not personal in the sense that I'm gonna tell youI'm a bed wetter cause I'm not...gonna tell you that. We're gonna talk about people's personal politicalviews and where they come from. This is what political scientists sometimes call PoliticalSocialization. But before we get into the forces that helpcreate our political outlooks, we should probably define what political ideologies look likein America. [Theme Music] In America, there are a number of wayspeople characterize themselves politically. Typically, they identify with a political party, althoughas we'll see when we talk more about parties, this has become less likely over time. And although there's a lot of overlap betweenpolitical party and political ideology, there's not 100% correspondence between the two. But there is 100% overlap between my fistand this eagle's beak! Politics.

So, now I should probably say what I meanby political ideology. Basically, I'm talking about whether you identify as liberal or conservativeor libertarian or socialist or anarchist or nihilist or craigist - people who just loveme. I'm one of those. You're probably familiar with the idea thatliberals are on the left, and conservatives are on the right. And this can be a helpful shorthand,but what political views do these terms represent? Let's go to the Clone Zone! What? The CloneZone - it's right here now? I'll just...I'll leave then. This way? I'll go this way. Taking a cue from anti-federalists, Americanconservatives believe that a large government poses a threat to individual liberty, and we prefer our national government to be as small as possible. (Scoffs) We have this in common with libertarians.There are some basic functions like national defense that government can best take careof. But especially since the New Deal, our government has taken on too much. What governmentwe need is best handled by states and localities. For the most part, American conservativesbelieve in the free market and that it will provide the greatest economic opportunityand benefit to the greatest number of people.

American conservatives usually support a strongdefense. This is one place where we generally don't think spending should be cut. Most other programs,the things that fall under discretionary spending, can and should be left up to the private sector. And this will allow the government to reduce its spending. Lower spending, in turn, will mean lower taxes.Ahh, delicious lower taxes. This means that we don't like flag burning,and we favor prayer in schools because these reflect traditional religious and patrioticvalues. Just like the eagle. I love the eagle. You'remy friend. (Kisses eagle) Many conservatives, as strong adherentsto religious faiths, are against abortion. But I'd say there's a greater diversity in conservativeviews on social issues than on economic ones. The social sphere is where we differ significantlyfrom our libertarian friends who don't see any role for government in people's personallives. This means that libertarians often support things like marijuana legalization thatmore traditional conservatives do not support. If there's one value that American conservativesprivilege above others, it's liberty. America is a country of freedom, and in most cases, governmentis more of a threat to liberty than a protector of it. And I'm out. (Kisses hand and touches eagle'shead) Not bad conservative clone.But bad, here's why. Sometimes liberals in the U.S. are calledNew Deal Liberals because the policies that we support grew out of the New Deal. And lately, a numberof us are trying to re-brand ourselves as progressives.

No comments