New Right and New Labour

According to New Labour a ‘third way’ approach to the delivery of welfare is the most
appropriate way forward in millennium Britain. What is the ‘third way’ and how does it
compare with the ideology of the previous New Right Conservative Government?

When Tony Blair came to power in 1997, he brought with him a Third Way ideology. The
philosophy created a middle path between the traditional political categories right and the left
and according to New Labour became centre-left. The reason for this new ideology is said to be by
New Labour a needed political reform, needed to cope with the new era.   In this paper the main
areas of policies of New Labour and the main area of policies of the previous New Right
government will be examined and compared to see the differences and similarities.

The Third Way was a book written by Giddens. He claims that it is new and separate from neo-
liberalism and traditional social democracy, a way to “renew social democracy by responding
creatively to the forces of globalization” (Giddens, 2009:1006).   Both Tony Blair and Bill Clinton
changed their policies and created a new ideology under the philosophy of the Third Way in order
to win as they had lost several elections. Alcock (2008) says that it is difficult to define the third
way and that it has tried to modernize the welfare state. Critiques of the third way say its new
policy goals are neo- liberalism and somewhat vague, lacking substance. New Labour say there
values have not changed but social and economical circumstances must be taken into account and
new polices must be put in place. Blair claims that the the third way is that of a traditional social
democracy view, although Alcock (2008) argues that the ideas of equal worth and opportunity for
all don’t equal traditional socialism. He also says that to understand political values you need more
than one word, he uses the example of equality by saying that this word means different things to