Ideological Stances

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Ideological Stances On Equality, the Free Market, and Human Services There are four major political ideologies that dominate society: Libertarianism, Conservativism, Liberalism, and Progressivism. These ideologies substantially influence the human services field, both in its implementation and progression, as well as, in its reduction. In viewing these vastly differing ideologies, one must look at the underlying beliefs of each in order to understand how they influence, alter, and develop the human services field, while also attempting to decide which is superior. In order to understand each ideology, their stances on both equality and the free market shall be discussed. This will allow one to properly demonstrate and understand how their…show more content…
Today, most Liberals see poverty and the unjust distribution of private property as the main limitations on the freedom of the common man (Harrison, et al., 2003c, p. 205). Thus, Liberals believe that “… there is an important role for the welfare state to ensure a degree of equality and fairness” (Harrison, et al., 2003c, p. 205). One should note, however, the phrasing “some degree” because Liberals do believe in some variation of wealth due to the unequal distribution of talent and ability of individuals (Harrison, et al., 2003c). Though Liberals believe in the necessity of a moderate welfare state, they are still supporters of the free market. They see it as an essential part of a free society, especially in terms of internationalism and removing walls that would prevent an international free market, as well as of the right of an individual to engage freely in economic activity (Harrison, et al., 2003c). Nevertheless, Liberals believe in a moderate sum of taxation to fund social welfare programs which may limit the degree of market freedom. Liberals avoid the residual, voluntary, and family-dependent style of human services used chiefly by Conservatives to aid the ‘deserving poor’, instead relying heavily on the state to provide benefits for many; the ‘collective’ (Lightman, 2003). These…show more content…
If society moves to a more Liberal/Progressive stance, the state-funded human services field tends to grow larger, but if society moves more towards a Conservative/Libertarian stance, the human services field will tend to shrink or even cease to exist. However, it is evident that there is not one universally dominant ideology in society: not all ideas are created equal, not everyone will agree. In a world that is often less than ideal, it becomes difficult to make definitive statements as to which ideology exudes the ‘right’ answer. Nonetheless, when we have people with vastly different beliefs come together in a democracy, we develop a compromise that, though not perfect, forms a superlative fusion between Libertarian, Conservative, Liberal, and Progressive ideas: a compromise that has a historical tendency to shift more to the left and, thus, increased levels of government funded human services as time has gone on. Therefore, an amalgamation of all four ideologies may very well be the most beneficial for
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