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Political Ideologies Comparison Essay (Critical Writing)

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Updated: Apr 11th, 2022

The difference between socialism and active state liberalism

Socialism is viewed as a complicated system since it entails diverse implications, as far as freedom is concerned. Socialists believe that, the idea of individual freedom is not appropriate because it overlooks many fundamental aspects. Since proponents advocate for freedom that jointly affects the entire community, other factions in the debate may believe that socialists are opposed to freedom.

For instance, liberals believe in individual freedom and, thus, a socialist approach would sound faulty. Socialists assert that the agent, who is also the worker or producer, should not be issued with freedom in isolation. This implies that an individual should not achieve freedom and its relative benefits through the hard work of another person (Ball & Dagger, 2009).

They should all benefit from their input in a similar fashion. Such factors dictate the need to have an identical magnitude of freedom for everyone. On the other hand, active state liberals embrace a refined approach in the issue of individual liberty. This faction believes that the state might stand out as evil, but its participation guarantees an impartial society.

Here, the state can provide conditions that support freedom for all individuals through social initiatives like Medicare. The biggest difference between the two groups is that socialists campaign for total freedom for all people, while active state liberals fail to account for genuine equitability (Ball & Dagger, 2009).

Social initiatives like Medicare provide favorable conditions for all, but some individuals are charged more than the others. On a basic level, active states tend to formulate these systems because such societies are usually unequal from the very beginning (Stephen, 2008). A socialist society would solve this problem from its roots.

The difference between fascism and a minimal State

Fascism stands out as a unique ideology that was mainly practiced in Italy. Here, the people are expected to dedicate all their time and resources to the state in a process that would supposedly enhance real freedom. In other words, fascists believe that real freedom can only be achieved in terms of collective endeavors that are embodied in the state.

They also believe that an organic perspective of the society is more significant as opposed to atomism and/or individualism. Fascism, as a school of thought, advocates for service to the state, if genuine freedom is to be achieved (Spencer, 1996). It is, however, evident that the state must employ unique measures in a bid to ensure that the people adhere to its stipulations and demands.

For instance, Mussolini’s fascist empire employed propaganda and military conquests in order to control the Italians (Ball & Dagger, 2009). Fascism definitely promotes corrupt ideologies that stem from the loopholes created by its constituents. In simpler terms, fascism is a practical depiction of the “evils” found in any typical state.

These are the same “evils” that minimal state liberals strive to avoid in their various platforms of operation. On the contrary, minimal state liberals possess a different approach to genuine freedom as opposed to the fascists. They also believe that the individual is the most important center of political interest. Therefore, individual freedom stands out as the most significant aspect in any minimal state (Ball & Dagger, 2009).

Whereas the state remains vibrant in a fascist society, it possesses a limited role in a minimal state. This particular design aims at protecting individual freedoms from an encroachment that could easily be propagated by the state. Regardless of the “evil” label given to the state, some neo-liberals believe that the state is a necessary “evil” that can be tolerated provided the constitution is fully operational.

Reflections on name calling

Name calling between active liberals and socialists basically stems from simple misunderstandings. It may arise from ignoring the exploitative nature of active liberalism. This is evidenced in the overcharging of some individuals in a given state, despite providing facilities that seemingly promote collective freedom.

The issue of labeling a state as evil leads to the tendency of equating a minimal state to a fascist state. However, the former only depicts the state as “evil,” while the latter is a typical manifestation of the state’s “evil” nature. The two indications can easily confuse an individual.


Ball, T. & Dagger, R. (2009). Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. NY: Pearson Longman.

Spencer D. (1996). Italian Socialism: between Politics and History. Massachusetts, USA: University of Massachusetts Press.

Stephen D. (2008). Politics: the basics. New York: Routledge.

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