An ideology is a consistent, coherent, and clear set of beliefs about the roles and relationship of a government with the individuals. There are four primary ideologies (communitarian, liberal, conservative, and libertarian) adopted in the United States. Communitarians value order and equality more than liberty and thus favor government activities that encourage equal opportunity, such as favorable action programs to employ minorities and increased spending on public housing. They also support both affirmative actions and laws that enforce social order, such as mandatory testing for HIV AIDS or prohibiting sexually explicit movies. This ideology would provide more governments programs to the needy, but would also require more taxes from the public. Liberals value liberty more than order but not more than equality. They also approve activities that promote equality and spending on public housing, but they oppose government actions that confine person’s freedoms, such as mandatory testing for AIDS and banning sexually explicit movies. Private businesses may be taxed by the government, but they would not be controlled by the government.
Conservatives signifies liberty more than equal rights but to reserve social order they would restrict freedom. They just like communitarians, support government activities that impose social order but oppose federal activities that interfere with the market, such as increased spending on public housing and affirmative action programs to employ minorities. Conservatives also rely on reducing taxes. Libertarians value liberty more than equality or order. Like conservatives, they oppose governmental interference with the market, but they also clash with government activities that interfere with the person’s freedom, such as mandatory AIDS tests or banning sexually explicit movies. They want minimal intervention in both social and economic spheres from the government.
I believe in liberalism as it promotes freedom and human rights. It strives to build a community where anyone can participate without the discrimination of power and deliver equality. Liberalism encourages diversity, and it welcomes minorities. It does not come to me as a surprise that I believe in liberalism because it tends to focus on the constructive role of the state in protecting the environment, preserving individual freedom, and promoting economic opportunities for people. I believe that certain businesses are unprofitable to the private sector and can be best managed by the state. It provides social harmony and stability. It is easy to promote individual and self-development. It allows peaceful solution in case of a conflicting interest. Liberal believes in equal educational and healthcare facilities for everyone in America. By limiting the power of government, it provides roughly equal power to every nation in the world.
Liberalism promotes innovation, when we look at the economic health and innovation potential of liberal states in America, seven high GDP states in America are strongly liberal. California has the GDP of $2.3 trillion and a booming tech industry known as Silicon Valley. Its regulation and high taxation have risen the economic power of the state and California are considered as the seventh-largest economy in the world. In the meantime, Amazon in Washington is on the way to potentially be the most dominant company in the world. Strong economies require a strong and effective government to carefully manage resources and improve innovative productivity.
To analyze political ideology, IDEAlog, a 20 question quiz has been designed. The test consists of three components; an introductory program, a tutorial that explains the ideologies and classification of them according to the four-fold ideology, the self-test that requires students to answer 20 questions based on a national survey. These responses categories each student in one of the four ideology types. One of the biggest issue with these surveys is dishonesty. Respondents may not be fully truthful with their answers, and it can happen because of social biases. Secondly, there is no way to judge if the participant responses conscientiously. At times, people are in a hurry and don’t read the question carefully, causing the contradiction in the data and affects its validity. People can also interpret the question differently, or they have the hard time understanding the meaning of the question. In this case, the data can be different from what we expected it to be. The questionnaire can have limited space or options for the given question or open end question can produce irrelevant or more data that can be analyzed. Sometimes, while answering, there is a risk that some questions will be ignored. This can cause incomplete data sets to analyze. If the participant’s responses to the answers in a way that is it hard to get one interpretation out of it than it can also a weakness of IDEAlog survey. Question-wording is very important in shaping respondent answer. If we twist a question, it can produce varying political behavior and this point the researchers often miss while constructing public opinions about ideology (Jordan, & Ferguson, 2016).
My political beliefs are influencing the number of factors. The first factor influencing my political affiliation is my family. I have always strongly affected by what my parents think, even before I am old enough to vote I knew who I will choose to vote. Parents have the benefit of being their children’s first source of political education. Everything I learned about ideology and political affiliations is by my parents. With time when I get older to understand the reasoning behind things, my political views changed. Because of the teachers at the school, my religious beliefs, my ethnicity and race, and media/internet.
When I was in school, the teacher has become a great political influencer for me because of his liberal thoughts and strong association with equality for all nation without any discrimination. The religion I practice also tends to advise the equal rights of humanity and freedom to the individuals. These factors shaped my political views toward liberalism. I believe the region also plays a role in determining the political connections, and the environment we grew up in. When I saw black people discrimination in the United States, it encourages me to have a broad and open view regarding other’s rights. In this digital world, media is everywhere and reporting social issues, and government legislation and policies to the world. With this freedom and accessibility to information via new or internet has also greatly affected my political point of view. It may not change the ideologies I already have but it surely emphasis on the democratic side of politics in me (Gerbner, 2018).
Jordan, S., & Ferguson, G. (2016). Extremism in survey measures of ideology. Research & Politics, 3(3), 2053168016669743.
Gerbner, G. (2018). Invisible Crises: What conglomerate control of media means for America and the world. Routledge.