Monday, March 16, 2009

Us and Them

For a few years now I've had a keen interest in politics, moreover, the sociological implications of our two-party system here in the US. That is to say, what the precise differences are in the mindsets, ideals, and motivations between Liberals and Conservatives. I've had my own notions of what they were, but being the social scientist that I am, I needed the facts. Studies, statistics, evidence, if you will. Of course there are many of all three, but the most concise and reader-friendly compilation I've found to date are the explanations found on none other than Wikipedia.

Now there have been harsh criticisms of Wiki because of the fact that it's an open forum, anyone can change data on a page there. But. I have found thus far in my academic pursuits that Wikipedia has thus far proven to be a pretty good resource (I've also heard the same affirmation from professors). So, in short let me say, if you're really and truly interested in finding out all the facts, look beyond Wikipedia. This I've done on this very topic of bipartisan politics in our country, but I wanted to offer up a quick explanation for anyone interested.

Why I like these two sites for explanations on Conservatism and Liberalism is because of the psychological and sociological studies that were included. This not only gave me a clearer idea about what makes the average Conservative and Liberal tick, but also heightened my awareness of all the different offshoots within each party and school of thought. I did this research for my own personal interest, as political sociology is an area I plan to study further - I hope to be minoring in poly. sci. and history at university come fall - my major is soc., of course.

If this were biased information, I wouldn't give it credence in terms of garnering truth. Biased information only gives insight into the details of current waves within a school of thought - that's why it's interesting to read both Conservative and Liberal blogs, news forums, etc.

Anyway, without further ado, I present to you Liberalism and Conservatism. Enjoy.

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