The ideology of modern people’s parties

Kostadin Bogdanov

Several decades of state independence has undoubtedly shown that political life in Macedonia should be built primarily on the ideologies embedded in the internal documents of the two largest Macedonian political parties VMRO-DPMNE and SDSM. Although in the meantime, on several occasions, they were susceptible to self-purification, however, to date, these two parties remained the two main pillars, two alternatives to the Macedonian political market, which, at least theoretically, should have offered different ways towards achieving a common goal – a prosperous and developed Macedonian society. One should be positioned center-right, and the other center-left. However, several decades of autonomy testify that Macedonia is still a young democracy for such a philosophical division, so often the policies of the “right” were moving towards liberalism with socio-admixtures, while the policies of the “leftists” were in part, according to a textbook, features of the conservative parties. Such indiscriminate ideological action, especially expressed in the last decade, was a result of the need to collect daily political points and build a virtual party rating, and most often in political philosophy it is called populism (both left-wing and right-wing), that is, a policy of “base passions”. Passions that at any time in every individual or group in the society, and especially in the “semi-informed”, can immediately be awakened and later subject to easy manipulation, but unfortunately only with a short-term effect.

The consequences that remain in the medium and long term caused by such short-term “success” of populist philosophy can be really deep for the society as a whole, especially when it comes to an insufficiently sociologically developed society like ours. In fact, these consequences from the policy of “base passions” are felt every day today and may be one of the main reasons for the current internal division and mutual animosity, which best finds self-confirmation in the current doctrine of “traitors” and “patriots”.

If we start from the knowledge that (one) source of the internal social antagonism, and the mutual hatred (judging by the comments on the social networks) are precisely the policies called populism, one can easily conclude that the solution to the social reconciliation lies in the internal acts of these two parties, and that is the return to their original ideology laid down in the Statute. In the case of VMRO-DPMNE, it is the modern ideology of the people’s conservative parties, which contains six elements that are essentially opposed to the philosophy of populism.

The first element is political liberalism. People’s parties advocate a core democracy in the society expressed through a fair electoral model. For the people’s parties, the political rival (or opponent) in that model is not an anti-state element, nor an element that needs to be destroyed and never be given the chance to run the state. For the national parties it is quite common and healthy to have different opinions and policies in a society and on the most sensitive topics, and it is quite normal that periodic changes of power occur. The people’s parties respect their political competitors and build a consensus on important issues with them. And not just for them, but for the next generations.

The second element is trust in the institutions. People’s parties believe in the institutions of their own country. They believe in the judiciary, believe in the administration, believe in the police, believe in the military etc. They believe that any inconsistency, remark, or disagreement can be solved through the system of domestic institutions, because you are the epitome of the state, that is, their negation means negation of the state itself that those parties are trying to lead. People’s parties believe in the doctrine of a free and non-partisan state. In professional institutions that do not serve mostly for accommodating party staff.
The third element is the need to build a plural and inclusive society. National parties aim to include all groups in the society in the social flows. Particular care leads to marginalized groups, because everyone has the right to a dignified life with equal chances, in accordance with the demo-Christian philosophy. Spreading hate speech, xenophobia or false superiority is contrary to their political existence. For people’s parties, the multiculturalism and multi-ethnicity of a society are an added value for society, a potential with enormous opportunities.

The fourth element is the concern for social values. Although it is difficult to define and list exactly what they are, yet the social “capital” of a society commonly defined as “civilization”, that is, social benefits that reflect the nature of man and society at a given moment, the people’s parties do not sacrifice for short-term political effects. Privacy, property, rule of law, equality, anti-discrimination, solidarity, security and safety, health, the environment, education, free media are only part of the concept of contemporary social values ​​for which conservations and advancement are handled by the people’s parties.
The fifth element is market liberalism. Modern people’s parties basically have the ideology of an open market for all. A market that will develop independently, without external interventions. Market in which the state will not be the largest employer, and whose liquidity will not depend on the regularity of the state in the payment of its obligations to the operators. A market in which a successful, competitive and innovative one will rule, not one who financed a political campaign for the election or is close enough to someone “upstairs”. It is unacceptable for the people’s parties to abuse state institutions in order to influence the free market.

And finally, the sixth element is the faith in EU integration. The modern people’s parties deeply believe in the perspectives that enable the integration of the European peoples. They believe that close mutual cooperation, without borders, with a common currency, and with all the differences in the level of development of their economies, has no other alternative to the primary goal – maintaining peace and security on the European continent. For them, the neighbors of their countries are not “enemies” who want to dismember or remove them from the “biblical” pedestal, but on the contrary, they see sincere friends with whom they can share a lot for the sake of their own citizens and the development of their societies.

VMRO-DPMNE will continue to build its own ideology as a political party on the concept of modern national parties. The values ​​of modern people’s parties will be further enhanced in the new Statute of the party. It is the way in which the party should develop in the future and be recognized in the political arena as a center-right oriented party. Certainly hand-in-hand with all the lessons learned from the past, in which the short-term effects of certain political philosophies threatened to divert conservative ideology of the party from the root, after which it should have been recognizable and positioned as an extreme right-wing, spiced up with populism. But what is very important is the need for these values ​​to be used and applied in practice, daily, zealously and with strong faith in them, so that do not remain as declaratory efforts on paper.

Only in this way, VMRO-DPMNE will very soon regain its honor and responsibility to lead the country, thereby integrating these values ​​into the entire social system for the prosperity and well-being of every individual in it.