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parties - CHAPTER 4 POLITICAL PARTIES Ideology Definition...

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CHAPTER 4 CHAPTER 4 POLITICAL  POLITICAL  PARTIES PARTIES
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Ideology  Ideology  Definition Ideology  is a system of beliefs and values  about the nature of the good life, society, the  economy, moral values, and the role of  government. "Liberalism" and "conservatism" are the two  dominant systems of beliefs and values in  American and Texas life today.
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Ideology  Ideology  Conservatism The basic conservative principle in economic policy is  laissez-faire, but in practice conservatives often  pursue "pseudo laissez-faire," that is, the theoretical  assertion that an unregulated economy produces the  best results coupled with practical support for  government policies that help business to overcome  problems in the market-place. Commonly described as being on the “right wing” of  the political spectrum, conservatives argue that  economic problems are caused by over-regulation by  government.
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Ideology  Ideology  Liberalism Liberals are more apt to blame "market failure" for economic  problems and to place more faith in the ability of government to  direct economic activity. Commonly described as being on the “left wing” of the political  spectrum, liberals usually oppose government activity in the  personal sphere while conservatives generally favor government  regulation in areas such as religion, sexual activity, and drug  use. On foreign policy issues liberals and conservatives tend to follow  partisan rather then ideological cues. Because of these contradictions, ideological debates are often  confusing, but in Texas as else-where ideological arguments  form the basis for a great deal of rhetoric and intense disputes  over public policy.
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Ideology  Ideology  Ideology in Texas Texas has historically been dominated by a combination of the  traditionalist and individualist political cultures which are translated, in  the Texas case, into an ideology of political conservatism. A 2002 survey reported that only 18 percent of Texans think of  themselves as liberal while 52 percent call themselves conservative.  Self-report numbers may contain ambiguities but are sufficiently  dramatic to emphasize the weakness of the liberal ideological  tradition in Texas. Although the national Democratic party is controlled by liberals and  the national Republican party is controlled by conservatives, both  parties in Texas are unusually conservative.
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