Rooted deep, intertwining acutely with the threads those weave the history of man as a social being, is politics. It is one pool of interest, to which man seems to gravitate effortlessly.
The caves homed not only the beginning of consecutive and dynamic changes but also housed the beginning of clustering, classification, division of roles and authority, in other words, systematization of being. This has evolved to the present day government and authority systems- that have branched in multiple forms and types.
Varying throughout communism, socialism, fascism, dictatorship, democracy, or liberals, culture and civilization globally have seen various dominant government styles. So, what is the right wing vs left wing debate all about?
Understanding the Differences Between Right and Left Wing Politics
Among these many systems, the one that successfully gave new grounds and meanings to the terms ‘right’ and ‘left’ was a system of ideologies born in the French parliamentary assembles dating back to the 1790s. France was a monarchy – a single king and his nobles ruling over the far wide land, implying taxes, making rules, and withholding the control over the majority of the masses.
This form of government, easily maligned and adulterated, had become a vicious loop of ‘the poor gets poorer and the rich gets richer’, deteriorating the standard of living of the people and utter chaos. The assembly of the politicians, then, was eventually divided based on the contrast of ideologies that they held. Broadly speaking, on the right sat the conformists – the one in intense favor of monarchy and the existing systems; on the left were the liberals- demanding changes and revolutionizing the governments’ ways. This marked the new context of right and left wings of thinking and governance.
Today, however, this system of classification falls short of efficiency and precision as it seeks extremities and what predominantly exists in most nations is a mixed system of governance. But that does not imply the discard of the system but merely sub-classifications where it can be correctly used. Thus, generally, the economic and social spheres are where we talk of policies being inclined to the right or left. Even in countries like the USA, where the right and left wing still prevails as Republicans and Democrats respectively, the decisions and policies are rarely entirely right or left winged even if the overall essence and principles indicate so.
Right Wing Vs. Left Wing: The Different Beliefs
Before clarifying the scale of the extreme left, partial left, central, partial right, and extreme right ideologies, we must lay out the contrast of the thinking patterns and policies of support of each wing.
The right-wing stands its grounds firm with –
- Merging of government and religion
- One state religion and abolishment of sovereignty
- Authoritarian control of the government over the economy
- Ultimately government owned markets
- Reduction of taxes
- Supporting capitalism, on extreme ends
- Encourages entrepreneurship
- Closed immigration outlook
- Conservative of the state’s culture
- Comparatively curbed civil liberties
- Illegalising abortion
- Illegalising same-sex marriage
- Consequential social gap
- Disregarded environment laws
- Underdeveloped retirement policies
- Underdeveloped public education and healthcare plans
- Also known as ‘laisses-faire’ policies (leave things alone)
The left-wing urges-
- Separation of state and religion as much as possible
- Freedom to practice religion of choice- Sovereignty
- Independent markets
- Global and liberated economy
- Increment of taxes, depending upon the viability of the class of society
- Supporting communism, on extreme ends
- Encourages fairly distributed property and abolishing personal property
- Open immigration outlook
- Inclusive of other cultural values
- Liberated civil rights
- Legalizing abortion
- Legalizing homosexuality
- Extensive environmental acts
- Developing retirement plans
- Developing public education plans
- Improving healthcare plans
- Also known as the Keynesien approach
Right Wing Vs Left Wing in Governance
The two wings of thoughts are applied to strategies of governance as follows-
Communism falls on the extreme left of the scale- total control of the economy by the state and abolishing private property;
Socialism – “a range of economic and social systems characterized by social ownership of the means of production and workers’ self-management, as well as the political theories and movements associated with them.”- is a partial left-wing ideology that supports market independence;
The center is the mixed mode of governance, utilizing both patterns appropriate for the people and situations;
Right-leaning modes include policies with the majority of decisions based on the right wing ideologies;
Fascism falls on the extreme right of the scale- supporting dictatorships and one state religion and radical views on regimentation.
Politics is an integral part of any state and decides the stand of that nation internationally. Politics bind people together and serves as a common ground that cannot be replaced by any other area of interest. People expect their government to work for their welfare and in the direction of their betterment. Every day on goings and the sustenance depends upon the policies and directives in force.
Especially for a developing country like India, where the diversity surges and thrives mixed essentially with politics, it lays the foundation for its development. Job opportunities, fundamental rights, industrial liberty, economic growth on the individual and industrial level, and social welfare and almost every other domain are touched and affected by political outlooks.
Right Wing Vs Left-Wing Politics in India
Talking of India, in context of right and left wing ideologies, parties like BJP, Shiv Sena, AIMIM can be categorized as socially right-leaning, while Congress, AAP, JDV, TMC, CPI-M can be categorized as socially left-leaning;
Economically speaking, Indian political parties are centrally idealized, in reference to the scale.
Extremism of either of these visions have lead to the widespread commotion, for instance, ‘classicides’ under Mao of China (L), Russia under Stalin (L), intolerance of Middle-eastern countries where they define their state by their religion (R), etc.
Usually, economically, right-wing outlooks are inferred beneficial rooting for entrepreneurship, independent markets as those of Sweden, Finland, etc. employment, and unemployment benefits. With reference to taxes, left-wing ideologies are preferred for public welfare- better education plans, and health policies. Immigration guidelines of the right wing have proved to be better after the failure of free immigration policies in Europe that drastically increased the crime rate. Topics like those of the death penalty, social problems are yet controversial and cannot be objectively solved with these sets of postulations.
A strict implication of the right and left ideologies cannot be practiced; perhaps, amendments and rules must be made satisfying and keeping in mind the greater good and benefit of the nation rather sticking to absolute normative ideologies.