Political ideas
in British politics today
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Socialism and Conservatism were once the commonplace rival ideologies in Britain but both have been so diluted since the latter part of the twentieth century. There are four main broad bodies of belief in British politics, all based on blends of existing (though fading) ideologies: new Labourism (or Blairism), Conservatism, Liberal Democracy and green thinking. This chapter examines the central elements of socialism and Conservatism; the post-war consensus; revisionist Labourism, Thatcherism and Blairism. It also looks at David Cameron's reworking of Blairism; Liberal Democracy and Green thinking as well as aspects of the political fringe. The chapter outlines Clement Attlee's version of socialism, identifies certain constants of traditional Conservatism, and lists the elements of agreed-upon postwar consensus. Given Labour's shunt to the right provided by Tony Blair after his election as party leader in 1994, Labour and the Conservatives began to converge as the 1990s wore on.

British politics today

The essentials

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