The Conservatism Portal
Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional values, accepting that technology and society can shift, but the moral values and principles should not. Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others oppose modernism and seek a return to the way things were. The first established use of the term in a political context was by François-René de Chateaubriand in 1819, following the French Revolution. Political science often credits the Irish politician Edmund Burke with many of the ideas now called conservative.
Sir John Alexander Macdonald
(1815 – 1891) was the first Prime Minister
. The dominant figure of Canadian Confederation
, his political career spanned almost half a century. Macdonald served almost nineteen years as Canadian Prime Minister; he is surpassed in tenure only by William Lyon Mackenzie King
When in 1864 no party proved capable of governing for long, Macdonald agreed to a proposal from his political rival, George Brown, that the parties unite in a Great Coalition to seek federation and political reform. Macdonald was the leading figure in the subsequent discussions and conferences, which resulted in the British North America Act and the birth of Canada as a nation on 1 July 1867. Macdonald was designated as the first Prime Minister of the new nation, and served in that capacity for most of the remainder of his life. Macdonald is credited with obtaining Confederation despite many obstacles, and expanding what was a relatively small colony to cover the northern half of North America.
The real division is not between conservatives and revolutionaries but between authoritarians and libertarians.
, in a letter to Malcolm Muggeridge (4 December 1948)
Selected anniversaries in May