• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To what extent do the ideas of the 'Third Way' represent a new form of politics?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

To what extent do the ideas of the 'Third Way' represent a new form of politics? In this essay I intend to examine the underlying concepts of the Third Way, I shall endeavor to explain, to some extent how the Third Way may possibly represents a new form of western politics. I shall carry out my argument with specific reference to the solutions that the Third Way has to offer on some of the major issues confronting New Labour's contemporary policies. I shall in be difficult to do justice to such a large topic in such a short essay, as the Third Way has proven to be a very ambiguous subject. What I am proposing is to structure this essay in such a manor that I shall be able to address three or four of the central ideological concepts surrounding the 'Third Way' as advocated by Giddens and Blair. So how does one define the Third Way? It's critic's claim that it is 'void of any real substance'. They think it's a 'collaboration of policies, which are with out any real content'. (Alex Callinicus, 2001) They explain the Third Way as being 'undefinable, an obscure set of doctrines which have been taken from existing ideologies on order to form a somewhat incoherent set of new policies'. Certain sociologists have suggest that 'the underlying concept of the Third Way is in no way unique' and 'that it's remnants can be found littered throughout the twentieth century where a compromise or a third way has always been sought to the problems of that particular time'. ...read more.

Middle

Tony Blair states in his explanation of the Third Way: 'Just as economic and social change were critical to sweeping the right to power, so they were critical to it's undoing'. The challenge for the Third Way is to 'engage fully with the implications of the change'. The changes he identifies concern global markets and culture, technological advance and information industries. (Collin Hay 1999) The Third Way seeks to promote global developments at both the local and national level. Blair and Giddens have suggested that 'the advancement of global markets and technologies, enhance the ideals of community, locally, nationally, and globally'. With this there will come a new political agenda, which is founded, on mutual responsibility across the globe. 'Our aims will have far reaching consequences in terms of opportunities for people and businesses through the achievement of an open world and an open economy'. (Tony Blair, 1999) However, the Third Way's success, they claim will rest on a 'strong mutual feeling of certain values through a global commitment to help those affected by environment, world debt and genocide'. According to their plans, globalisation is meant to serve as 'a great engine of economic growth and a spurring innovation', making capital and labour much more productive than when they were under protectionism. (David Halpern, 2000) The Third Way proposes the 'restructuring of some key parts of the welfare state'. There are changes within the society, which make appropriate changes in welfare state structures unavoidable. ...read more.

Conclusion

Otherwise it would not only damage the public identity of social democracy and deny its confession of basic values, but also contribute to social disintegration. Therefore, a 'Third Way project must conform by a concept not just of 'opportunities for all', but of social justice, which implies the guarantee of a minimum standard of material well being'. Of course, such a guarantee implies 'the individual's obligation to seize every opportunity offered to him by the markets or the society to make his own living'. (Anthony Giddens, 1998) Thus, employability, may be one of the useful objectives for welfare state reform, but not the sufficient condition for a renewed social democratic project as long as there are not enough jobs available for everybody. In conclusion I shall prefer to sit on the fence and watch the Third Way unravel itself. For as I have suggested the Third Way certainly could be interpreted as a unique form of modern politics. However the Third Way will be interpreted differently by each European government. Thus in order for the Third Way to be successful as truly new form of politics that really can transgress the line between left and right it must be introduced with certain structural elements. Firstly there is a need for 'moral principles and priorities'. Secondly there is a need for 'a more detailed, clear ideology that relates more to the real world' and thirdly 'these principles need to be clear, with policies and practices on how to change current policies to Third Way policies'. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree International Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree International Politics essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    What evidence is there that the state is still the dominant actor in World ...

    4 star(s)

    that newly created norms become formalised and develop meaningful impact. This process changes the scope of state sovereignty as it "reconstitutes the relationship between the states, its citizens and international actors." (Clark; 199) The practice of the variety of NSA as has already been proven is wide and far-reaching.

  2. Does Liberalism best explain contemporary world politics?

    I will now look further at Liberalism in relation to the other main theory of international relations, Realism. One of the main differences between Realism and Liberalism concerns the idea of relative gains and absolute gains. Relative gains are where a country makes a gain, be it an economic, political or power gain in comparison to another country.

  1. The impostion of Structural Adjustment Programmes on sovereign African states is a form of ...

    Thus the private sector is unbalanced and isolated. Considering these factors there should be no rush towards imposing, even if it were possible, multi-party democracies and an unfettered market economy. The approach should be one of gradual change and long-term strategy, working within and slowly changing the present system.

  2. Critically evaluate post-war realist explanations of international politics with particular reference to power

    Britain consciously acted as a balancer in the 19th Century, switching alliances to oppose any power that appeared to be developing a capability to conquer.32 According to realism the balance of power can take on two forms, the simple balance known as the bipolar system and the complex balance known

  1. Critically examine the role of political ideas in the Russian Revolution

    hundreds of factory workers and their families died protesting for a constitution, an idea dismissed by the Tsar as "senseless dreams"5. When compared with the 1917 Revolution, set in the midst of WWI, with Nicholas II still in power and Russia still demanding the same rights and change that it

  2. How has the success of the Extreme Right in France come about and what ...

    Shields states that the FN is stridently nationalist, whilst claiming that the party fits no predefined mould (Shields 2007 p310). Furthermore, Marcus supports this view by stating that the FN strongly adheres to this policy area. He argues that nationalism was prominent particularly under Le Pen, as he consistently defined

  1. How Should We Define Globalisation?

    regional and global at the other... It is about the interconnections between different regions of the world - from the cultural to the criminal, the financial to the environmental - and the ways in which they change over time."5

  2. Machiavelli, the Prince - Explain how his ideas in this quotation contribute to Machiavelli's ...

    In this aspect one cannot criticise ambition or greed or the means one takes to achieve these ends. At the root of all Machiavelli's beliefs and ideals is his reasoning on human nature, of which ambition is integral. He declares that 'whoever desires to found a state and give it

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work