What does it mean to be Conservative, and how does it mean different things to different people’s indifferent nations, different cultures, different legal systems, and differences in how their societies are governed and the historical background of their nation?
A Conservative from the United States or the Western world in ultraconservative nations like Iraq, Iran or Saudi Arabia will be seen as radical leftists.
Conservatism also means many different things to people on politics’ left and right sides.
On the left, a Conservative is somebody who favours small government and low taxes and is in favour of liberal economic policies and religious conservatism.
In contrast, a Conservative may view a liberal or leftist as somebody who wants to tax the rich, destroy normative and cultural institutions, and see the elimination of a nation’s identity.
This can be seen strikingly in 2015 when Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declared his country the world’s first post-national state while defining Canadian values.
This means that Postnationalism or non-nationalism is the process or trend by which nation-states and national identities lose their importance relative to cross-nation and self-organised or supranational and global entities and local entities.
What Justin Trudeau and other liberals are aiming for is a world of their nations not having ties to their historical past and their cultural legacies, in this case, the Anglo-Saxon past and the history of English.
To a lesser extent, nations such as America, Australia, Canada and other postcolonial countries of the conservative and social traditions developed and created in England.
These institutions are the English common law and legal system that is not top-down but bottom-up when it comes to creating and implementing laws, not from a higher authority but from an authority from the People.
The Lesson from Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon is a historian and author from the 18th century. He created his most famous work, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, where he discusses why the Roman Empire fell and how this was linked to the failure to pass on the cultural legacy of Rome to another generation.
He strongly linked the death of conservatism in antiquity and the early mediaeval ages to the fall of the Roman Empire.
His reasoning can be linked to people in our time not having children, who are not creating a family unit and a social and educational environment where a legacy of culture, nationhood, and belief in their own home nation identity is not passed on to their children.
This is why people like Justin Trudeau and people educated within liberal educational systems don’t see themselves as English, American, Canadian or other because they were raised to be individualistic and not part of a community.
You may be familiar with this, but you must ask yourself if you have a father, mother, brothers, uncles, or other family connections worth my titles and descriptions.
Suppose these connections are fragile and can easily be broken. This is a sign of the failure of intergenerational families from the Silent Generation that fought during World War II from 1939 to 1945.
The succeeding generations of boomers, Generation X, Generation Millennials, and Generation Z, have failed to pass on the baton of culture, civilisation, and other legacies of their societies to the next generation.
According to historian David Starkey and the Conservative philosopher and politician Edmund Burke, Conservatism is each generation passing on the legacy of previous generations and the institutions created for each succeeding generation.
Conservatism is not the absence of change, merely the conservation of national identity and ensuring there is a nation and a better society and that each subsequent generation is simply the custodian and protector of that legacy for England; this has been happening for over 40 generations.
For the Chinese, that would be 66 to 88 generations.
Here is an excellent Greek proverb that may explain it far, much better than I can: the importance and death of conservatism in liberal societies: ‘A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they shall never sit.’
The proverb speaks to public service, to actions that benefit others, not oneself.
Liberalism is the Death of Duty
What does it mean to have a liberal society, and how to be liberal is to be free of social constraints, which include the family and other constraints that can be positive, such as fatherhood and devotion to the family? Liberalism is the focus on the individual over society as a whole.
Economic and social liberalism has strengthened since at least the 18th century. It can be argued the reason for its success can be seen in its poster child of liberalism, the United States and the British Empire.
To varying degrees of success nearly 300 years, the most dominant nations on this planet have been nations that part of the Anglo-Saxon culture grew and had the legacy of liberalism and freedom baked into their political systems.
This freedom has seen the rise of their economies and the development of unprecedented technological change since the ending of World War II in 1945.
But with the stated liberalism is the death of duty and lease to people’s liberation, which is both good and bad, you cannot be a liberal if you are a mother or have commitments to something beyond your wants and desires.