Political dissonance

When you think of the fundemental divide in politics it is that conservatives (with a small 'c') are pessimists and those of the 'left' are optimists. This is optimism and pessimism about human nature: conservatives believe that mankind is essentially fallen - that given half a chance our instincts are acquisitive and violent and that it is only by having strong institutions that our worst nature is bridled. With those dangerous tendancies under control, our better nature can thrive. The 'left', on the other hand, believe, with Rousseau, that humans are fundamentally good and that institutions hold that better nature down. If you take away shackles then mankind will fufill its better destiny.

However in the field of economics and finance the opposite seems to now be true. It is the 'conservatives' that are for deregulating and free markets and the 'left' whose instincts are that capitalism always becomes monopoly unless institutions and regulation stop it happening. 

There seems to be an interesting dissonance here. Maybe this philosophical contradiction at the heart of our politics is why they have become so fractious and polarised.

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