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The Kamikaze Democrats  The Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal

Sun, Nov 21, 2021 12:00 AM PT


Christian democracy

Christian democracy is a political ideology that emerged in 19th-century Europe under the influence of Catholic social teaching, as well as neo-Calvinism. It was conceived as a combination of modern democratic ideas and traditional Christian values, incorporating social justice as well as the social teachings espoused by the Catholic, Lutheran, Reformed, Pentecostal and other denominational traditions of Christianity in various parts of the world. After World War II, Catholic and Protestant movements of neo-scholasticism and the Social Gospel, respectively, played a role in shaping Christian democracy.Adherents of the ideology are known as Christian democrats. In practice, Christian democracy is often considered centre-right on cultural, social and moral issues, but centre-left "with respect to economic and labor issues, civil rights, and foreign policy" as well as the environment. Christian democrats support a social market economy.Worldwide, many Christian democratic parties are members of the Centrist Democrat International and some also of the International Democrat Union. Examples of major Christian democratic parties include the Spanish People's Party, the Christian Democratic Union of Germany, Ireland's Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil, the Dutch Christian Democratic Appeal, the Mexican National Action Party, the Christian Democratic People's Party of Switzerland, the Austrian People's Party, the Christian Democratic Party of Chile, the Aruban People's Party, and a faction of the British Conservative Party.Christian democracy continues to be influential in Europe and Latin America, although it is also present in other parts of the world. Today, many European Christian democratic parties are affiliated with the European People's Party. Those with Eurosceptic views in comparison with the pro-European EPP may be members of the European Conservatives and Reformists Party. Many Christian democratic parties in the Americas are affiliated with the Christian Democrat Organization of America.


Democratic Party (United States)

The Democratic Party is one of the two major, contemporary political parties in the United States. It was founded around 1828 by supporters of Andrew Jackson, making it the world's oldest active political party. Since the 1860s, its main political rival has been the Republican Party. Before 1860, the Democratic Party supported limited government and state sovereignty while opposing a national bank and high tariffs. It split in two in 1860 over slavery and won the presidency only twice between 1860 and 1910. In the late 19th century, it continued to oppose high tariffs and had bitter internal debates on the gold standard. In the early 20th century, it supported progressive reforms and opposed imperialism, with Woodrow Wilson winning the White House in 1912 and 1916. Since Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal coalition after 1932, the Democratic Party has promoted a social liberal platform. The New Deal attracted strong support for the party from recent European immigrants, many of whom were Catholics based in the cities, but caused a decline of the party's conservative pro-business wing. Following the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the core bases of the two parties shifted, with the Southern states becoming more reliably Republican in presidential politics and the Northeastern states becoming more reliably Democratic.


English Democrats

The English Democrats is a right-wing to far-right, English nationalist political party active in England. A minor party, it currently has no elected representatives at any level of UK government. The English Democrats were established in 2002 by members of the Campaign for an English Parliament pressure group. Following growing political devolution in the United Kingdom, which had seen the creation of the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Parliament and Northern Ireland Assembly, the party's founders called for a separate English Parliament. In the 2000s, it obtained a small number of local councillors. In 2009, the party's candidate, Peter Davies, was elected Mayor of the Metropolitan Borough of Doncaster, although he left the party in 2013 in protest at its admittance of former members of the fascist British National Party (BNP). As well as attracting many ex-BNP members, who then constituted a sizeable percentage of the English Democrats' electoral candidates, in 2015 the political party Veritas merged into it. Ideologically committed to English nationalism, the party previously called for England to become an independent state, thus breaking up the United Kingdom. Since 2016, it has instead called only for the creation of a devolved English Parliament within a federal UK. It has also called for a referendum on whether Monmouthshire, a county presently recognised as being in Wales, should instead be classified as part of England. The party is Eurosceptic, and supported the UK leaving the European Union.


Leader of the Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats are a political party in the United Kingdom. Party members elect the Leader of the Liberal Democrats, the head and highest-ranking member of the party. Liberal Democrat Members of Parliament also elect a Deputy Leader of the Parliamentary Party in the House of Commons, often colloquially referred to as the Deputy Leader. Under the federal constitution of the Liberal Democrats the leader is required to be a member of the House of Commons. Before the election of the first federal leader of the party (the Liberal Democrats having a federal structure in their internal party organisation), the leaders of the two parties which merged to form the Liberal Democrats, the Liberal Party and the Social Democratic Party (SDP), served as joint interim leaders. In the event that the leader dies, resigns or loses their seat in Parliament, the deputy leader (if there is one) serves as interim leader until a leadership election takes place. This has occurred three times, with Menzies Campbell serving as interim leader following the resignation of Charles Kennedy (Campbell was elected leader in the ensuing election) and Vince Cable serving as interim leader following Campbell's resignation. Jo Swinson lost her seat in the general election held on 12 December 2019, thus ceasing to be leader; deputy leader Ed Davey and Party President Sal Brinton became acting co-leaders. Brinton was replaced by Mark Pack following his assuming the office of Party President on 1 January 2020. Davey won the Leadership election and became Leader on 27 August 2020 at the 2020 Liberal Democrats leadership election.


Liberal Democrats (UK)

The Liberal Democrats (commonly referred to as the Lib Dems) are a liberal political party in the United Kingdom. The party has 12 Members of Parliament in the House of Commons, 89 members of the House of Lords, four Members of the Scottish Parliament, one member in the Welsh Senedd and two members in the London Assembly. The party served as the junior party in a coalition government with the Conservative Party between 2010–2015, with Scottish Labour in the Scottish Executive from 1999 to 2007, and with Welsh Labour in the Welsh Government from 2016 to 2021. In 1981, an electoral alliance was established between the Liberal Party, a group which descended from the 18th-century Whigs, and the Social Democratic Party (SDP), a splinter group from the Labour Party. In 1988, the parties merged as the Social and Liberal Democrats, adopting their present name just over a year later. Under the leadership of Paddy Ashdown and later Charles Kennedy, the party grew during the 1990s and 2000s, focusing its campaigns on specific seats and becoming the third-largest party in the House of Commons. Under Nick Clegg's leadership, the Liberal Democrats were junior partners in David Cameron's Conservative-led coalition government in which Clegg served as Deputy Prime Minister. Although it allowed them to implement some of their policies, the coalition damaged the Lib Dems' electoral prospects and it suffered many losses at the 2015 general election which relegated them to fourth-largest party in the House of Commons. Under the leaderships of Tim Farron, Vince Cable and Jo Swinson, it refocused itself as a party opposing Brexit. Since 2015 the party has failed to recapture its pre-coalition successes under Ashdown and Kennedy and a poor performance in the 2019 general election saw Swinson lose her seat.A centrist to centre-left political party, the Liberal Democrats ideologically draw upon both liberalism and social democracy.


Social democracy

Social democracy is a political, social, and economic philosophy within socialism that supports political and economic democracy. As a policy regime, it is described by academics as advocating economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a liberal-democratic polity and a capitalist-oriented mixed economy. The protocols and norms used to accomplish this involve a commitment to representative and participatory democracy, measures for income redistribution, regulation of the economy in the general interest, and social welfare provisions. Due to longstanding governance by social democratic parties during the post-war consensus and their influence on socioeconomic policy in Northern and Western Europe, social democracy became associated with Keynesianism, the Nordic model, the social-liberal paradigm, and welfare states within political circles in the late 20th century. It has been described as the most common form of Western or modern socialism, as well as the reformist wing of democratic socialism.The history of social democracy stretches back to the 19th-century socialist movement. It came to advocate an evolutionary and peaceful transition from capitalism to socialism, using established political processes, in contrast to the revolutionary socialist approach to transition associated with orthodox Marxism. In the early post-war era in Western Europe, social democratic parties rejected the Stalinist political and economic model then-current in the Soviet Union, committing themselves either to an alternative path to socialism, or to a compromise between capitalism and socialism. In this period, social democrats embraced a mixed economy based on the predominance of private property, with only a minority of essential utilities and public services under public ownership. Social democrats promoted Keynesian economics, state interventionism, and the welfare state, while placing less emphasis on the goal of replacing the capitalist system (factor markets, private property, and wage labour) with a qualitatively different socialist economic system.While retaining socialism as a long-term goal, social democracy is distinguished from some modern forms of democratic socialism for seeking to humanize capitalism and create the conditions for it to lead to greater democratic, egalitarian, and solidaristic outcomes. It is characterized by a commitment to policies aimed at curbing inequality, eliminating oppression of underprivileged groups, and eradicating poverty, as well as support for universally accessible public services like child care, education, elderly care, health care, and workers' compensation.


Sweden Democrats

The Sweden Democrats or Swedish Democrats (Swedish: Sverigedemokraterna [ˈsvæ̂rjɛdɛmʊˌkrɑːtɛɳa] (listen); SD [ˈɛ̂sːdeː] (listen)) is a nationalist and right-wing populist political party in Sweden founded in 1988. The party describes itself as social conservative with a nationalist foundation. The party has been variously characterised by academics, political commentators and the media as national-conservative, anti-immigration, eurosceptic or far-right. Jimmie Åkesson has been party leader since 2005. The party originally had its roots in Swedish fascism and white nationalism, but began distancing itself from its past during the late 1990s and early 2000s. Under the leadership of Jimmie Åkesson, the SD underwent a process of reform by expelling hard-line members and moderating its platform. Today, the Sweden Democrats officially reject both fascism and Nazism.Support for the Sweden Democrats has grown steadily since the 1990s and the party crossed the 4% threshold necessary for parliamentary representation for the first time during the 2010 general election, polling 5.7% and gaining 20 seats in the Riksdag. This increase in popularity has been compared by international media to other similar anti-immigration movements in Europe. The party received increased support in the 2018 Swedish general election, when it polled 17.5% and secured 62 seats in parliament, becoming the third largest party in Sweden. The Sweden Democrats remained isolated in the Riksdag for a long time because the other parties staunchly maintained a policy of refusing cooperation with them.


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