New Right

New-Right conservatism is a marriage of neo-liberal and neo-conservative ideas, and includes elements of both neo-liberal and neo-conservative thinking.

The New Right is both economically libertarian and socially authoritarian.


The New Right strand of conservatism gathered momentum from the mid-1970s as a rival to one-nation conservatism. New Right conservatism is founded on two distinct but, in certain respects, seemingly opposed ideological traditions:


Law and order and free markets- two sides of Thatcherism

neoliberalism or the liberal New Right — a modernised version of classical liberalism, based on a commitment to the free-market economy, the minimal state, and individual freedom and responsibility Link :Friedrich Hayek

neoconservatism or the conservative New Right — an updated form of traditional conservative social thinking, based on a commitment to law and order, traditional values and public morality.


By amalgamating these neo-liberal and neoconservative ideas, the New Right contains radical, traditional and reactionary elements. Its determination to abandon government interventionism in economic and social affairs, and attack 'permissive' social attitudes is clear evidence of the New Right's radicalism. At the same time, neoconservatives stress the benefits of traditional values. New Right conservatism also exhibits reactionary tendencies: both neoliberals and neoconservatives often appear to want to turn the clock back to the 1800s, which they regard as a mythical age of economic liberty and moral responsibility.

During the mid-1970s, Western governments using orthodox interventionist policies (based on Keynesianism and welfarism) were unable to combat 'stagflation' in their economies — a mixture of persistent inflation combined with high unemployment and stagnating demand. New Right thinking exerted a powerful influence in the USA and the UK where it became popularly associated with President Ronald Reagan (1981-89) and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher (1979-90). The terms 'Reaganism' and `Thatcherism' became political labels for this New Right perspective, which also proved influential in Australia and other parts of Europe.