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Why I’m Voting Conservative

As a young person whose political allegiances lie with the Conservatives I have received a lot of abuse. The most common accusations and comments I’ve received are usually along the lines of calling me rich and selfish. Personal insults have also been thrown, however, in my eyes these do not hold any sort of standing as they are not political arguments and are instead attacks on me for daring to hold a different opinion. It’s often too difficult to respond with short answers as the reasons I identify as a Conservative are too long and complex to be broken down into small responses.

Before I start I’m going to state categorically – I don’t hate the poor or the disabled and I would not describe myself as selfish (except in terms of food, I’m sure most of my friends including the ones who hold different political opinions would back me up on this).

I’ll also state that this post isn’t a way for me to try and force my opinions on anybody else, this is simply a post in which I explain my opinions and hopefully those that disagree will be able to understand why I shall be voting Conservative.

It’s also important in any functioning democracy for everyone to hold slightly or completely different opinions, values and political ideologies. I welcome different opinions and learning about different political ideologies. This is how we hold whoever is in government to account and aim to create a better society for everyone.

My core values are small government, low taxes, low welfare and greater personal responsibility. Although not all of these align completely with the Conservatives (especially under Theresa May) it is definitely the party I align with and believe in the most.

To me the Conservative party is about aspiration, I believe that anyone anywhere with the right mindset and hard work can achieve. Obviously that’s not the case for everyone and those people should be given our support. However, I know so many people who have come from disadvantaged backgrounds and have used that as motivation to take control of their own future and achieve. The image below is one of my favourite campaign posters.

John Major - They made him Prime Minister

I don’t hate the poor, I grew up in a working class household where my mum who was single at the time struggled to support us. After working hard to get a promotion at work (she works in the public sector) things began to improve and improved even more when she married my stepdad as obviously two wages are better than one. I accept that things don’t always happen that way, some people work their arses off and struggle to make ends meet and that is wrong.

I have lived in a poor environment, a well off environment and now in a poor environment again. I don’t put that down to the government. I put that down to poor budgeting and sometimes these things happen.

As soon as I was 16 my parents told me that if I didn’t get a job they would not fund anything and would not buy me anything, they expected me to earn money if I wanted nice things and as I worked they did not mind subsidising things I was unable to afford. If I wanted anything I had to work for it. I am so grateful that my parents instilled these values into me.

I vehemently disagree with individuals being handed out benefits by the dozen, I disagree with a large welfare state. A fellow Conservative described the philosophy with a succinct phrase – “Hand up, not hand out”. In my opinion it’s wrong that people that sit at home all day scrounging off the state can actually earn more than those people who work. I agree that the Conservatives have made mistakes; cutting disability benefits being one of those mistakes. Those who genuinely can’t work should be given help and support, they are vulnerable and must be looked after. Those who can work and choose not to should not receive any financial support, people who work hard should not fund the lives of those who can’t be arsed. A large welfare state encourages failure, plenty of people do not see the value in working because they can (I’m not going to use the word earn because they don’t EARN their money) receive more money by not working. The Conservative party (although they make mistakes) acknowledge this, hence why they reduced the benefits cap down to £23K in London and £20K elsewhere. I agree that mistakes have been made that will impact the most vulnerable in our society and those decisions were wrong. But I would also like to add that several people have stated that they received the help they need because of a Conservative government, not in spite of it. However, to me the Labour party increases the welfare state, it keeps those who are poor poor and encourages the mindset that everyone else is to blame. As I stated above the Conservative party to me and pretty much every other Conservative member is the party of aspiration. We take responsibility for ourselves, I recognise that I’m the only one who can take control and improve my life.

Another reason why I support the Conservatives is that they are (mainly, not always and when they’re not it pisses me off) the party of low taxes. They believe that working people should take home more of what they earn and hand less over to the state. I believe in keeping taxes as low as possible. A high-tax state (if of course the tax is too high) usually results in people leaving the country and gives people more of an incentive to avoid/evade tax (obviously regardless of the tax rate some people will still attempt to do this but you get my point).

A Conservative led government increased the personal allowance from £6,475 to £11,500, hundreds of thousands if not millions of people have been taken out of paying income tax all together. As of 2015 this meant that 26 million people are now keeping more of their own money. David Cameron actually proposed (I’m not quite sure if it has been implemented because of his resignation and other external factors) to raise it further meaning that those working 30 hours a week on minimum wage pay no income tax at all.

I disagree with increasing taxes on the rich, to me it seems bizarre that we should be punishing people who have worked hard and earn more. Most people that are earning large wages have not simply walked into that role, they’ve worked extremely hard and therefore should not be punished for simply earning more. It punishes aspiration. Yes a lot of people on low incomes work hard as well and that links to my point above. The rich are already paying their fair share. More than a quarter of income tax is paid by the top 1% of earners, and 90% of income tax is paid by the top 50% of earners. I cannot understand the mindset of people thinking they are actually entitled to other peoples money.

Next, I believe in free market capitalism. This involves the laws and forces of supply and demand being free from intervention of the government. It is a result of recognising a need, followed by the need being met. I believe the less government intervention, the more free we all are – “The freer the market, the freer the people”.

This leads me onto my next point, I abhor Socialism. I cannot even begin to describe just how much I disagree with it. I profusely disagree with handing more power over to government. I have a lot of strong opinions and views on Socialism and why I disagree with it etc but that is for another post.

I also believe that the greatest solution to poverty and maintaining public services is a strong economy. The Conservative party helps to encourage investment into the country by reducing corporation tax from 28% in 2010 to 17% by 2020. In the current uncertain climate after Brexit we must provide businesses with an incentive to invest in our country to ensure the highest chances of economic success.

To sum up, I believe that the Conservative party is the party of aspiration, it encourages success. It helps our country to have a strong economy. It allows us to be patriotic and also traditional in some areas whilst also being progressive where needed. I am more than willing to acknowledge the government’s failures and mistakes. It is inevitable that every government will make mistakes, and that is the beauty of democracy; if the government pisses us off we can simply get rid of them at the next election.

I know a lot of points were missed out and over simplified but I know already that this is a very long post and I feel as though I have rambled on enough and people get the idea. I may write another post in the future regarding some of the missed issues but for now I feel that this is enough.

I’ll add one of my favourite quotes below…

“YOU CANNOT LEGISLATE THE POOR INTO PROSPERITY BY LEGISLATING THE WEALTHY OUT OF PROSPERITY. WHAT ONE PERSON RECEIVES WITHOUT WORKING FOR ANOTHER PERSON MUST WORK FOR WITHOUT RECEIVING. THE GOVERNMENT CANNOT GIVE TO ANYBODY ANYTHING THAT THE GOVERNMENT DOES NOT FIRST TAKE FROM SOMEBODY ELSE. WHEN HALF OF THE PEOPLE GET THE IDEA THAT THEY DO NOT HAVE TO WORK BECAUSE THE OTHER HALF IS GOING TO TAKE CARE OF THEM AND WHEN THE OTHER HALF GETS THE IDEA THAT IT DOES NO GOOD TO WORK BECAUSE SOMEBODY ELSE IS GOING TO GET WHAT THEY WORK FOR THAT MY DEAR FRIEND IS THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF ANY NATION. YOU CANNOT MULTIPLY WEALTH BY DIVIDING IT.” – ADRIAN ROGERS

Ta,

Emily x

This post was originally published by the author on her personal blog: https://politicalemily.wordpress.com/2017/05/16/why-im-voting-conservative/

About Emily Topping

Profile photo of Emily Topping
Emily is a 19 year old Northener who studies Business at college. She hopes to start her career in an Accounting apprenticeship in 2017. She has a keen interest in politics and identifies as a right wing libertarian

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27 comments

  1. Absolutely superb Emily. Welcome to the DG. I love the acceptance that governments make mistakes, including Tory ones, but the positives of Tory actions far outweigh any negatives. The lesson in that for me as an ardent Conservative is to admit when I/we are wrong about something , correct it and move on to positive territory.

    • Then it would be useful if May admitted she was wrong to reduce the numbers of community police officers, but she cannot and will not admit she was wrong on anything.
      It is a bad plan that cannot be changed and a weak leader that will not change.

  2. Profile photo of Isaac Anderson

    Hello Emily and I’d like to second Ian’s welcome to the blog, especially after with such a well-written article. I completely agree with your point of raising the personal allowance, which I am glad to see has been mentioned in the manifesto to £12,500. And a great quote to end it with!

    Isaac

  3. I think Emily you should do some more research, some of the ideas in your article require you to go away and do some critical thinking. I suggest you look at the following key areas 1 Work, to produce what and for whom? And what about the future of work. What do you think of the basic income idea? 2 Benefits, who receives benefits what are they and where are they from? If I have a lot of land I will receive lots of benefits for set aside etc, if I am a landlord I may receive a lot of money in housing benefit, if I have a company I will receive benefits from the government to top up the wages of my staff etc etc. 3 Does the ‘free market’ exist? 4 If I am rich I am not being punished by paying more tax, I am just contributing more money to make a better society for everyone wouldn’t you agree?

    • The last issue I especially agree with; your wealth would not have been possible to accumulate without the society you accumulated it from. Therefore is it not right that your wealth be taxed to look after that society, otherwise you are simply exploiting.

  4. So many holes in this. We must be a tax haven due to Brexit. Why is Brexit happening? Due to Tory mismanagement.

    I also grew up in a poor single parent family and used to feel well I’ve done good so should everyone else. What I didn’t realise was that I still had privileges others didn’t a mother who loved me and helped and read to me who had a degree grandparents who could allow her to go to work. Many others do have these options.

    Conversely it took me many years to acquire the same confidence that is given to public school boys by birth.

    I hope you grow up and see the real world as I did.

    • You grew up in that family yet you think it’s fine to make excuses that aspirations should perish? Firstly, you’ve no grammar whtsoever. Secondly, what world do you see? A world where citizens on benefits earn more than those who work? A society that condemns people for people successful? Or even a society that pushes people into thinking they are less than they deserve to be?

      Wake up and you might reaiise the world as it is, moron.

  5. Good piece. Well written and clearly from the heart. I’d like to question the idea of tax being a burden. A well managed taxation system is beneficial for all. It funds schools, hospitals, public services, amenities, transportation, parks, health care, detention, police, ambulances, fire-fighters, etc etc. all of which improve everyone lives – rich or poor. Having a higher tax bracket for high wages works well in the majority of thriving countries as the state funded facilities are top notch. Try catching a train in Germany or Austria or, attending a hospital in Sweden or Denmark, or see how well paid the first responders are in other countries. We pay taxes for the betterment of all. The UK has a low wealthfare spend to GDP compared to other G20 states, and the rise in food banks, homelessness, and children living in poverty is evidence of that. Have a look at the fraction of wealthfare spent on family benefits and you might be surprised.
    The argument for a lower corporation tax doesn’t make sense to me. The UK at 28% was already the lowest in 2010 across the G7. Now aiming for 17% by 2020 will be more than half that of the USA (in the 40% bracket). How many firms are running away from the States due to their high corporation tax? A low corporation tax is an indication of a failing economy. Japan & Germany set theirs in the 30-40% bracket and their economies are growing at a higher rate than the UK (figures published this week).
    Regan economics was based on the idea of a free market self regulating. It’s an aspirational idea, much like Marxism, but like Marxism it fails due to human greed (GFC being the latest example). Unregulated markets work well for those involved but the majority suffer as a consequence – visit Spain, Italy or Greece too see the impact deregulation has had.
    You are correct: having a free and open debate serves us all well. Fortunately we have greater access to resources now with the internet so the basis of the traditional media outlets is not so apparent.
    Good luck with your studies – and keep the debate alive!

  6. As a labour voter, I began this article with trepidation, and although this hasn’t changed the views I currently hold (about how we should create a society with greater equality, celebrating a community which helps each other rather than working entirely for personal gain), it was genuinely interesting to read a well-written article expressing a point of view which directly opposes my own, rather than the normal Tory propaganda which I come face to face with.

    • Profile photo of Isaac Anderson

      Hello Abbie,

      Thanks for taking the time to read and comment on Emily’s article, and we’re very appreciative of your compliment. There’ll be plenty more articles in the run-up to the election that will advise you to vote for the Conservative Party, but fear not: I hope we at the Daily Globe will always present “well-written articles … rather than propaganda” – regardless of your policies and politics welcome to the Globe and the debate!

      I would opine that Emily wasn’t suggesting we all work entirely for personal gain, but rather that if people know they can improve and succeed, and are encouraged to do so, they probably will achieve more.

      Isaac

  7. Smug, self satisfied and overly simplistic. She seems to think that poverty is a lifestyle choice. It is not.

  8. No mention of the government’s performance over the last seven years.
    Tories are just great if you listen to then and ignore their actions.

  9. I understand where you are coming from, but this isn’t just about benefits. Taxes pay for our schools and our health service, neither of which are particularly stable currently. In fact to be honest, our schools are very very poor and they’re not getting the funding they need. Similar can be said for the NHS which has become one of the worse health services in the developed world. You may not think people who can’t be bothered to work should get everyone else’s money for free or that it’s totally wrong to give more and more power to the government and I really see where you’re coming from but when you let businesses run the country, things like education and health get forgotten and we can’t let that happen in this country. There’s a reason why some countries in Europe have a much higher standard of living than perhaps the US where this kind of attitude and ideology is the norm.

  10. So in summary, you’re voting Conservative for quite a selection of selfish reasons but you are well aware of what you’re doing.

    Fair enough, I can disagree with that.

    • Why would I vote for a party that doesn’t help me? I’m pretty sure most people vote for the party that benefits them the most?

  11. I used to believe that Labour were overly idealistic and naive, and that the Conservative party are realists capable of governing a country for the long term, for many of the same reasons you have laid out here. However, if you investigate the documented and factual evidence on the effect of Conservative ‘aspirational’ policies, such as Grammar schools and reducing benefits to get people working, they don’t work. Grammar schools don’t allow the poorest to succeed, just cement the middle class, and the number of people taking benefits that aren’t genuinely deserving of them is very small.

    Coming from someone that used to hold a very similar view, read some statistical studies from both sides of the political spectrum, the centre-right rhetoric can be compelling without much in the way of evidence to back it up.

  12. This would be great if the current Tory party wasn’t so far removed from it’s original values of Libertarianism and small government.

    Theresa May is an authoritarian, there’s no doubt about that. She wants increased surveillance, government control of the internet and the reduction of Civil Liberty.

    When you say you’re voting Conservative – you’re not voting for what the party actually is, you’re voting for what it was.

    • I agree Jed! I wrote this post before the manifesto was released and I found myself feeling disillusioned with the current Conservative party. I’d still like to see the Conservative party go back to it’s Libertarian roots but if not I may find myself voting for the Liberal Democracts. Which I find unfortunate because they’re a bit too centrist for my liking.

    • Profile photo of Isaac Anderson

      Hello Jed,

      Thanks for commenting. Re Theresa May. Indeed she is; I hope nobody thinks we’re saying May is the perfect person for the job – she isn’t. But what she is, is someone considerably more palatable, in my opinion, than Jeremy Corbyn.

      I’m not even interested in discussing the pros and cons of Labour and the Liberal Democrats – I think, for reasons mentioned in my article here (http://www.dailyglobe.co.uk/comment/why-i-think-jeremy-corbyn-mustnt-be-prime-minister/), that the choice really only is May, with all her drawbacks.

      So I guess I am voting for what the Tories were – because they’re the closest party to what I espouse and hold to be correct. It’s not precisely the same as Emily, but we reach a quite similar conclusion.

      Isaac

  13. Thank you for this Emily. I am very left wing, as are most of my friends. I have really been struggling to understand why people vote Conservative because it is so different to my own personal ethos.

    I actually agree with a lot of your points, but disagree with the Conservative solution. I also agree that work should pay. So if you work hard and earn money you should be able to use that money to put a roof over your head and food on the table, and indeed you should be better off the more you work. However I do not see businesses paying enough for people to have secure housing with with space to live. So I guess I would advocate rewiring employers to pay more, you may reduce the taxes and costs for the business so they can pass on the cost savings in the form of pay rises?

    I also agree with your principles in a free market. I currently work in the public sector in a profession which had huge shortages at the moment, nursing. While I believe that healthcare is a fundamental right and should therefore be provided by the government I can see the advance to free market principles. I have had a pay call for 7 years now. My wage is worth less, but by free market principles I should be paid more, as when a skill is in short supply you pay more for it. But the policy of pay caps is causing more problems as people who have worked hard, have and a degree are sometimes earning less than they would if they were not working. Particularly those with children, as their childcare is more extensive than their pay.

    • Profile photo of Isaac Anderson

      Hello Clare,

      Thanks for commenting and glad to hear Emily’s article helped you understand why many of us here at the Daily Globe are conservative (small ‘c’) and support the Conservatives.

      I would point out – and possibly rock the ring-wing of the boat here, that I don’t think wages are too low, but rather the cost of living – especially housing is outrageous. I’m not sure if you live near the South but it really is unaffordable down here. I wouldn’t be against increasing pay, though by any means. I do like your idea of investing money from tax cuts into the staff. On the basis of fairness, I would be against providing more of the workers’ salary as child care credits, because many of us workers do not have children. It would be, in effect, a pay cut for us.
      Alas, the Free Market is not as effective when we all get engaged in constructing rules around it – like you and many in the NHS are finding out!

      Glad to see people who are “very left wing” feel comfortable to get involved in a proper respectful debate here at the Daily Globe!

      Isaac

  14. You say you abhor socialism. Does this include the NHS? Under the Conservatives it has gone from running a net surplus of almost £2bn in 2010 to a deficit of over £2.5bn last year and waiting times have soared. This strikes me as either being down to deliberate mismanagement or grotesque incompetence. If you’re ok with this, then fair enough, that’s your call. I’m not ok with it, and as you said in a democracy if you’re not happy with a government’s performance you can vote them out.

  15. Questions for a Conservative
    • Do you believe that liberals are stereotyped as hating the rich in the same way that conservatives are stereotyped as hating the poor?
    • What would happen to our society and democracy if we all held more similar (and less diametrically opposing) beliefs and paradigms? Would this alleviate the polarization in politics and our society? Is there any potential benefit to this?
    • Are there any examples in our societies by which someone would begin to believe that no matter their belief and work ethic, they might never achieve success? What do we define “success” and “achievement”?
    • In acknowledging someone coming from a disadvantaged background, are you thus not recognizing that people are inherently born unequal and without a level playing field? Shouldn’t this be justification enough for someone or something (e.g. government) to tip the scales back to level?
    • Is there a direct empirical correlation of hard work equating to success?
    • Regardless of government intervention or not, does any human deserve to suffer unnecessarily? Is a roof over our heads and food on our tables a right or a privilege?
    • Is it better to build a bigger life boat than necessary and save a few people who can swim but don’t want to, or to build a smaller boat thus forcing some people who can’t swim to be left out and drown?
    • What do you imagine the people who struggle to make ends meet, or the homeless and impoverished, will turn to if our governments wean away their support and assistance?
    • What is the best way to encourage risk taking and hard work while still providing a net incase people fall?
    • How do we accurately determine who genuinely needs support and assistance while making sure that those who need it most are not left behind?
    • Is there a correlation between the socioeconomic you are in as an adult to the one you are born into? What causes this? How do we increase economic mobility?
    • How do you feel about a financial monthly incentive for people under a certain income level who are able to work and do?
    • What do you mean by a “large” welfare state and in what way does it encourage “failure”?
    • Is there any data that reliably shows how many people abuse the welfare system?
    • In what ways does the Labour party keep the poor, poor?
    • Is it good for our society if we only take responsibility for ourselves and not the others around us? Would it be good or bad if we all took responsibility for our fellow citizens?
    • Is it justification to lower taxes by saying “people won’t pay if its higher”? Would you happier paying higher taxes if you felt like it went to more quality services the government would provide (e.g. Scandinavian governments)?
    • A study found that a CEO makes on average in an hour what the average employee would make in a month. Do you believe they work that much harder? Do they deserve that much more money?
    • What determines the “fair share” of taxes for the rich to be paying?
    • Are you aware that there are no countries in the world which practice free market capitalism? With a small government, who will lead? Who will make the decisions? Will corporations act as the de-facto governments? Will common people hold any power anymore?
    • Some of our taxes go to building infrastructure, schools, paying leaders to negotiate trade agreements, environmental legislation, clean water, public service, among many other things. Do these investments benefit big business? Is this government intervention in our economy?
    • Is the prosperity of a few more important than the needs of the many?
    • If you assume that poor people abuse government assistance, wouldn’t that same logic apply to rich people in terms of avoiding taxes and abusing/misusing government assistance, bailouts, tax breaks, among other things? Shouldn’t we assume the worst like we do with the poor?
    • If we assume poor people don’t want to work and just take money from the government, shouldn’t we assume that the rich don’t want to work harder than they have to either? Wouldn’t this translate to taking money from they people (less taxes) so they don’t have to work more for more money?
    • By assuming that if we cut taxes on the rich it will cause companies to invest in your country, isn’t that just making them the de-facto government? Would it be easier to just let government tax them and guarantee investment in the country instead of hoping they wont abuse the system and use the tax break as a deposit to their bank account? Can you cite examples of tickle-down economics being successful?
    • Nature abhors a vacuum. With a small government, who do you believe will fill that vacuum? Will they be responsive to the needs of the many? What leverage will the people have over them if they can’t vote them in and out of power?

  16. Nothing is possible without hard work and determination. Great article.

    • Nobody ever said it wasn’t. It’s just a bloody sight harder if you’re poor and the atories, far from fostering aspiration, see, hell bent on stultifying it.

  17. Anyone who thinks we as a society were better off under the Tories, please note:
    A) 400,000 children are now living in poverty, a figure which rose by 100,000 in 2015/16. 67% of those are from working families.
    B)Food bank usage has risen, with over half a million people reliant on just the Trussell Trust for food packages.
    C)In two reports, the UN heavily criticised the Tories for “grave” and “systematic” violations of disabled people’s human rights. The government, meanwhile, has severely cut disabled people’s benefits.
    D)Public sector pay increases have mostly been capped at 1%.
    E)National debt has increased by more than 50%.
    F)Homelessness has risen by 54%.
    Corporations have seen tax cuts while the tax gap is around £120bn per year.
    G)The NHS has seen a real terms cut in the amount of money given to it per patient. While the amount of NHS money paid to ‘independent’ companies has more than doubled to £8bn a year.
    H)The government has cut the number of people getting social care by 26%. And it has cut £50m from children’s mental health services.

    What does Emily in her smug self satisfaction think of that?

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