Why do we have political parties? The United States has several political parties, but two that are major. How did this get started? This dates back to the Constitutional Convention with the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists
The Federalists were those who favored a change from the Articles of Federation and wanting an active, more centralized Government. The weakness in the Articles of Confederation was that there was no strong central Government to require the states to do anything. The Federalists argued that the best way to
The Anti-Federalists feared giving too much power to a central government, fearing that America would move back into a monarchy.
The Good Characteristics of having Political Parties
- The Parties nominate candidates – people they believe will best govern on behalf of the party, the voters and their party beliefs.
- The party system helps to encourage those in office, to govern with the party’s values, mission and agenda.
- The party can act as watch-dogs on the other party.
What do the Parties Believe?
- Conservative values are finding their home in the Republican Party
- Liberals have found their home in the Republican Party
- Defend the status quo against social and economic changes.
- Valuing the individual promotes a peaceful society.
- Recognizes that individuality is a natural barrier to equality
- Support: lower taxes, less government regulation over business, less welfare spending, more spending on defence, harsher penalties for crime, the Judeo Christian Values, and adherence to originalist Constitutional Interpretation.
- Political value that changes the status quo
- Use the government to strengthen the collective
- The collective then act in the best interest of the individual
- Equality within the collective is valued over individuality – in the liberal mindset, instead of empowering the individual, the group is empowered.
- Support: politicians and policies that promote higher taxes, more government control over business, more welfare, less spending on the defence, more protection for the environment, adherence to an activist Constitutional Interpretation.
The Bad Characteristics Of Having Political Parties
George Washington spoke of the ‘bad’ in his Farewell speech
“The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.
The fear is that a tyrant or a totalitarian will rise up. We need to ensure we do not allow this to happen – that we need to ensure we promote constitutional Liberty
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