Lecture 13 - Liberalism - Poli Sci Lecture#13 Liberalism...

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Poli Sci – Lecture #13 Liberalism: ideology puts the rational, individual property owner in the centre of the world. Liberals will argue that as individuals, we all have access to reason It’s through reason that we can actually understand our happiness To be happy, means we must fully consume nature, without limits In order for happiness to stand test of time, we need property Property is essential for liberals to be and remain happy Property includes economic goods, money. We are rational property owners For liberals, the individual comes first The state, in liberal thought, is a necessary evil o It will be given minimal functions However, despite the minimal functions – the history and practice of liberalism will command an expansion of state and its functions o Because the economy itself will expand. The state functions will have to expand because the economy itself will have to be expanded, we will have to allow more and more people to enjoy the power of consumption , to give them spending power States will exist, create social programs that will allow wealth distribution o E.g. income tax; tax the rich, give to poor Difficult to deny the the historical success of liberalism, and the power of attraction From the 18 th century onward, it is liberalism that will shape the major transofmrations that will occur in western society; the principles of liberalism will be the driving force The first transformation will be industrialization o Also the guiding force of urbanization Liberalism will reduce, if not eliminate the arbitrary nature of political power o It will also somewhat reduce the brutal nature of power o Ideology will be used against the absolute monarchs of Europe o To justify destruction of monarchy, liberal principles will be used.

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