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William "Bruce" Robb

There are four types of political philosophy. They are the following: conservative thought, moderate thought, liberal thought. and Progressive thought. Why should the disabled worry about them? They should because each deals with how change should occur if it occurs at all. Change must occur if things are to get better. I will therefore discuss each and let you decide which philosophy is better for the disabled. When you decide, you must turn this knowledge into action and educate the people. Only through education will change come.

Conservatism believes that the status quo must be maintained at all costs. Its proponents believe that if change comes it should be slow, so slow that it isn’t change at all. This attitude also extends to change which has been shown necessary. How can maintaining the status quo help the disabled when fundamental change may be necessary? If change isn’t forthcoming then its business as usual and disability will continue to grow unchecked. More and more money will be spent just to keep this growing population on government aid. If this happens then some people may look upon us as leaches on government. If we are so viewed then what could be the logical conclusion? Could it not be what was tried over 50 years ago; total annihilation of the disabled. Is conservatism good for the disabled?

Diametrically opposed to conservatism is liberalism. Its proponents believe that political thought is always changing. They are willing to try new ideas which appear to make things better. However many times these new ideas are only band aid approaches to problems which require long term solutions. Liberals believe that change is necessary, however they do not feel that it is necessary to change the status quo very much. Therefore much of their proposed changes are short term not long term solutions. Short term solutions don’t effect needed changes in the status quo. An unchanged status quo means that change is meaningless. If change is no change then it’s business as usual. If change is no change then disability will continue to grow unchecked. Unchecked disability will mean that more people will become dependent upon government. This could lead to resentment and what happened over 50 years ago could happen again. Is liberalism the answer to the problem?

In the middle, between conservatism and liberalism, is the moderate who tries to reconcile the two. Reconciliation may sound meritorious but it can lead to no progress because all that is accomplished is arbitration not progress. If there is no progress then it is business as usual. If it is business as usual then nothing has been done to arrest disabilities uncontrolled growth. Uncontrolled growth means that the disabled will still be dependent upon government. This may mean more and more money. More money may lead to resentment. If we are resented then what happened over 50 years age could happen again. Is the moderate approach the answer to uncontrolled disability?

Progressivism is the last political ideology. It is a type of liberalism but it is a liberalism which looks to long tern solutions. Its advocates see the problems and set out to rectify them. They pass laws designed to eradicate them or at least lessen their impact. Progressive ideas would mean that leaders would pass laws designed to curb disabilities growth. Curbed growth could mean that disability could cease to be a problem. Progressive ideas could mean that all external barriers to employment would be removed. Removal of these barriers could lead to fewer and fewer people on government assistance. Fewer people on government aid could mean that the mistakes of the past would never be repeated. Fewer people on government aid could mean more tax revenue. More revenue could mean that taxes for all would go down. Is progressivism good for the disabled as well as for a country?