To What Extent Was Thatcherism a Radical Departure from Traditional Conservatism

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TO WHAT EXTENT WAS THATCHERISM A RADICAL DEPARTURE FROM TRADITIONAL CONSERVATISM To a substantial extent was Thatcherism a radical departure from traditional conservatism, as it combined neo-conservatism and neo-liberalism to form the ‘New Right’ or as it later known as Thatcherism. A traditional Conservative supports authority and patriotism. They are opposed to political or social change and believe in discipline, law and order. They are against constitutional reform; support the monarchy and traditional institutions, such as the House of Lords. Margaret Thatcher’s version of liberal conservatism, known as the ‘new right’, swept away the power and influence of the one nation conservatives in the party. She believed that people were naturally competitive, that private enterprise should be encouraged because it rewarded effort. There was a belief that high taxation meant that those who created wealth were penalised so that the less gifted could be subsidised. Her supporters were strong believers in the individual, yet just as the liberals of the Victorian era they believed in a strong state. The new right was radical departure from traditional conservatism because the policies on society are completely different. Traditional conservatives see society as organic, a natural state of civilisation, whereas the new right sees society, as no more than a collection of individuals. Thatcher famously stated ‘there is no such thing as society’. This enables us to argue the point that Thatcherism was radical departure from traditional conservatism. Furthermore, traditional conservatives support free markets but take a pragmatic view of economic management, believing that there are sometimes where state intervention is need. Compared to the right new where they completely oppose state intervention. Also traditional conservatives supported the welfare state compared
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