To What Extent Has the ‘New’ Labour Abandoned Traditional Socialist Principles?

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To what extent has the ‘new’ Labour abandoned traditional socialist principles? The Labour Party. We see them as Britain’s traditional left wing socialist party, fighting for the working class man and supporting the whole of society. Although Labour started out with left wing socialist intentions, do they still hold the same principals in today’s political climate? Old Labour, the traditional socialist representation of the labour party, presented many socialist views, such as cradle-to-grave welfare and social justice. They also opposed such views as a free-market economy, much preferring to regulate and set quotas for it. Old Labour was the standing of the Labour Party since their founding in the early 20th century. Since then, the party has undertaken a radical change, through the conception of Neil Kinnock and the branding of Tony Blair, to become the centre-left party that we’ve come to know as New Labour. New Labour govern with a pragmatic stance, concentrating on making practical decisions that influence the UK, as oppose to Old Labour who were ideological, and looked at the best ways in which to manage society and react to current events. A famous quote, used by ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair in 1997 was “We were elected as New Labour, and we will govern as New Labour”. This signified the change in how the Labour Party acted. As a party formed for the working class people of Britain, Old Labour actively sough to attract the lower skilled, lower income members of society. The party designed and implemented its policies so that they would please and benefit the working class of Britain. Old Labour saw the working class people of Britain as the most needing of support and benefit, and those who would benefit the most from it. The Old Labour party were less interested in attracting and supporting middle class members of society, and as a result of this
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