Political virtues

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The political virtues were listed by Bernard Crick "In Defense of Politics", 1982. They included but were not limited to:

  • prudence:

take one step, then see its results before taking another

  • conciliation:

making friends with people you have argued with

  • compromise:

giving up some things you want to get those things that are most important to you

  • variety:

people want to have a number of choices that are different from each other

  • adaptability:

meet the needs of changing times

  • liveliness:

never be boring

He sees these virtues as a way of avoiding ideology or "absolute-sounding ethic". More virtues will lead to less conflict. None of them can be forced on anyone.

Some other virtues have also been suggested: humour, empathy, initiative and compassion. "Being brief" or "being positive" are sometimes claimed also to be virtues, but just as many people think they are bad things that only help avoid truth or serious problems.