Portal:Conservatism

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Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional values, accepting that technology and society can shift, but the principles should not. Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others oppose modernism and seek a return to the way things were. The first established use of the term in a political context was by François-René de Chateaubriand in 1819, following the French Revolution. Political science often credits the Irish politician Edmund Burke with many of the ideas now called conservative.

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The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK. It governs in coalition with the Liberal Democrats, with party leader David Cameron as Prime Minister.

Colloquially referred to as the Tory Party or the Tories, the Conservative Party emerged in 1834 out of the original Tory Party, which dates to 1678. The party was one of two dominant parties in the nineteenth century, along with the Liberals. It changed its name to Conservative and Unionist Party in 1912 after merging with the Liberal Unionist Party, although that name is rarely used and it is generally referred to as simply the Conservative Party.

Conservative Prime Ministers led governments for 57 years of the 20th century, including Winston Churchill (1940–45, 1951–55) and Margaret Thatcher (1979–90). Thatcher's tenure led to wide-ranging economic liberalisation, placing the Conservatives firmly as the most free market and eurosceptic of the three major parties. The party was returned to government in 2010 under the more liberal leadership of David Cameron.

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The conservative is a person who considers very closely every chance, even the longest, of "throwing out the baby with the bath-water," as the German proverb puts it, and who determines his conduct accordingly.

Albert Jay Nockin The Atlantic Monthly (October 1936)

In the news

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  • June 13: Damian Green says Conservatives performing appallingly among ethnic minorities, the Tory minister (pictured) says black and Asian voters are 'completely disengaged' from party. Guardian

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The traditional mascot of the United States Republican Party is the elephant. A political cartoon by Thomas Nast, published in Harper's Weekly on November 7, 1874, is considered the first important use of the symbol. In the early 20th century, the usual symbol of the Republican Party in Midwestern states such as Indiana and Ohio was the eagle, as opposed to the Democratic rooster. This symbol still appears on Indiana, New York, and West Virginia ballots.

Harper's Weekly (A Journal of Civilization) was an American political magazine based in New York City. Published by Harper & Brothers from 1857 until 1916, it featured foreign and domestic news, fiction, essays on many subjects, and humor.

Credit: Lecter

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