The general consensus among political scientists is that "left wing" includes liberals, progressives, socialists and communists, and the "right wing" includes conservatives, traditionalists, reactionaries and fascists. Political parties can be described as moderate, center-right, center-left, far-right and far-left to more accurately express nuances on the left-right spectrum.Know More
The left-right political spectrum was born during the French Revolution of 1789. In the French National Assembly, supporters of the king sat on the president's right while supporters of the revolution sat on his left. In 1791, the National Assembly was replaced by the Legislative Assembly, and the seating arrangement continued — this time with moderates occupying the center seats. By the early 20th century, the terms left and right were associated with specific political ideologies.
In the United States, the Democratic Party is generally identified as being on the left, and the Republican Party is generally identified as being on the right. The left-right spectrum has been criticized for being too narrow, as it is possible for a member of a political party to hold positions on the opposite side of the spectrum. For example, the pro-life and pro-choice causes are identified with the right and left respectively, but there are pro-life Democrats and pro-choice Republicans.Learn more about Political Parties
Liberals support civil liberties and not economic and financial liberties because they tend to believe economic and financial liberties can infringe on civil liberties. However, while many liberals support civil liberties but not economic or financial liberties, that does not mean every liberal does so.Full Answer >
In American political parlance of 2014, Libertarians are those who believe in minimal governmental involvement or interference in private business and social matters, while liberal is used to describe those who advocate the use of governmental power to achieve desired societal outcomes. Most libertarians are members of either the Libertarian, tea or Republican parties. Most liberals are either Democrats or members of left-wing political parties.Full Answer >
Although the two terms are often used interchangeably, a political party can be a faction, but a faction is not necessarily a political party. A political party exists for the purpose of obtaining and maintaining power within the government. A faction is a group within a group that maintains influence.Full Answer >
Republican and Democratic philosophies differ on controversial topics such as the role of the military, gun laws, gay and lesbian rights, health care, social welfare programs, tax policy, environmental and energy issues and free trade. Republicans also believe that the government should adopt a "less is more" approach when passing legislation whereas Democrats believe that a strong central government is important to maintaining a stable and inclusive society.Full Answer >