Extreme Right Parties in Western Europe (Comparative by Piero Ignazi

By Piero Ignazi

Contemporary election good fortune around the continent strikingly demonstrates the patience of the intense correct in Europe. Piero Ignazi's quantity presents the definitive account of this crucial political phenomenon. what's its importance? Why have such events prospered in a few nations and never others? Who votes for them and why? those are a number of the questions that the booklet goals to reply to through the process its broad-ranging research.

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The desire to counteract the trend of Great Britain’s economic, social, and moral decline stimulated intellectual circles, ranging from the Salisbury Group to the Centre for Policy Studies and the Institute of Economic Affairs, to reframe the conservative agenda by rejecting the ‘old conservative’ paternalism, love for quiescence, harmony, and unity, and emphasizing instead individual self-reliance and self-confidence. These shifts in value priorities inevitabily produced some theoretical imbalances.

The second, more powerful while totally unconscious, source of intellectual mould for the extreme right has been provided by neo-conservatism. A landmark change in the Western societies’ cultural mood was provided by the reformulation of (mainly) American and British conservatism in the 1980s (Steinfels 1979; Bell 1980; Girvin 1988; O’Sullivan 1989; Devigne 1993). This parallel evolution took place in the late seventies, moving on from the dissatisfaction towards the socioeconomic Keynesian compromise, the (consequent) ample State intervention over the economic and social spheres, the excessive power conferred on trade unions and militant minorities, the cost of the welfare state especially in terms of high levels of taxation, and the loss of traditional values.

Why do they therefore enter the political family of the extreme right? Because they manifest an ideology (in a weak sense of the word) that, while not structured and articulated as in the case of fascism, contains a series of values and attitudes radically opposed to those that the respective political systems are founded upon. This point raises the question of the mode of opposition: when does an opposition become anti-system? A tentative solution to this problem could be suggested on the basis of some authoritative speculations.

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Extreme Right Parties in Western Europe (Comparative by Piero Ignazi
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