The Role of the ‘Radical Circle’ In the Development of Classical Political Economy

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The Role of the ‘Radical Circle’ In the Development of Classical Political Economy

Classical political economy is generally the relationship between politics with special consideration to ancient times. The earlier leaders played a role in molding the current political system. Even though things have become sophisticated as new formulas are invented in dealing with political issues, past developments cannot be separated from what is currently happening. There is a relationship between economy and politics experienced even in modern times. The political stability of a country is determined by how much it produces economically. This trend is not only applicable today but also in the past (Simpson 24).Considering the history in the development of politics, we discover that there is a substantial amount that was invested to ensure that a certain political goal is achieved. 

The radical circle in classical political economy refers to measures that were taken by certain individuals to ensure that they achieve a certain goal in their pursuit for leadership. During the earlier years, when money was not the basis of countries’ economy, people used persuasive words to lure people to elect them (Semmel 23). Persuasive words could however not be taken seriously unless accompanied by some touchable goods. People mainly pursued political responsibilities because they needed recognition. It was not about the monetary benefit but the respect that they and their families would receive in return. This people therefore had to prove to their respective societies that they had all it takes to be granted the responsibility. During such times, the nations had just been delivered from the hands of the colonial rule and were looking out for a leader that will reinstate them. The people therefore looked for visionary leaders who promised to ensure that they are stable politically so that they do not land into the hands of colonialists again.

Considering that people had not quite attained the level of education that the current politicians have attained, they were looking out for someone who was higher in terms of status and educational achievements. Few rich people were also at a good position to take up the responsibilities. However, the people that were high in status were considered to be arrogant and selfish and the only way a leader could prove to the people that he or she is different is by giving them some economical gains. This people would therefore express their generosity by involving themselves in community programs to help the needy. This people had to use some of their investments to prove to the people that they will also not steal from them once in leadership (Perelman 33). Their ability to create wealth was also considered of importance so as to prove to the community that they had the ability to uplift their economic status. A person that was well placed economically was presumed to be the best person to take up leadership because they would transfer the same to the country and their respective communities.


There are however some manipulative forms that were involved in pursuit for political recognition. Communities were mostly governed by civil laws, which were not binding enough. The people that thought they had it all would therefore take advantage of the ignorance of the people and force them to vote them in. People were not adequately informed about their rights and even if they were informed, they had no law and no court to defend them (Klaver18).  There was an aspect of where the strong manipulated the weak. The laws that were therefore made were for the weak as the strong were considered to be above them. There were therefore some leaders that took over, as people were afraid of what would happen to them if they did not support them. Leadership was also based on community strength whereby communities that were large in numbers or had a higher standing in the community would automatically take leadership. The other minor communities did not have the strength to seek representation and thus agreeing to the terms that were imposed to them by the other stronger communities.

This may have begun during the colonial rule where the colonialist favored certain particular communities. These communities were at an advantage probably because of the resources that they had. Colonialists and missionaries were mostly attracted to areas that had a good reward for their needs. They were looking for resources that they could exploit. They therefore had to treat the subsequent communities well so that they could allow them to exploit such resources. They would probably buy their land and give them some monetary gains. By the time the colonialist left, such communities had a lot that they had gained from these seemingly strong individuals (Redman 40). They were slightly higher in terms of exposure and thus placing them at a better position to manipulate them. They were given due respect by other communities who respected the decisions that they made. Even though they were kind to them, they changed as people became more informed. There was a realization that they may probably not maintain the prestige that they held on even as more people became educated. Their political strength which was as a result of what they owned was threatened as more people discovered the secrets of being rich.

David Ricardo James mill and Jeremy Bentham contribution to classical

Political economy

David Ricardo James mill and Jeremy Bentham made substantial contributions to classical economy. They encouraged people to make savings and adapt means of expanding their finances. Ricardo encouraged individuals to expand the value of their money by investing it. Jeremy also emphasized on the importance of saving the money and resources that they receive so that thy can take care of their future needs. Benthan had his ideas that would help people to venture into productive economic activities that will ensure that they grow. All this individuals contributed a lot to the economic lives of the people. In time when people took little importance in investing into productive business, Ricardo’s ideas contributed a lot in challenging them into such investments.

Compared to the past whereby wealth was used to entice people by extending to them some benefits, politics today is about how far a person can reach. People have become so much entangled with their affairs that they need to buy their time. Money that is mostly spent by politicians in modern times is to buy the time and attention of their people. The medium of communication was not as sophisticated as the current one is and people were visiting few areas where they would be welcomed by a huge crowd from all corners (Edelman 45). Currently arrangements have to be made to make a certain group of people to attend a political rally. This is done by assuring people that their time will be compensated. They must also be promised some monetary gains with an assurance before they commit themselves. It has become unpredictable whether a certain chosen politician will bring the economic changes that are needed by the country.









Works cited

Perelman, M, The invention of capitalism: classical political economy and the secret history of primitive accumulation, Duke, Duke University Press, 2000

Edelman, M, The anthropology of development and globalization: from classical political economy to contemporary neoliberalism, Wiley-Blackwell,

Klaver, C, A/moral economics: classical political economy and cultural authority in nineteenth-century England, Ohio, Ohio State University Press, 2003

Simpson, D, The political economy of growth: classical political economy and the modern world, St. Martin's Press, 1983

Semmel,  B, The Rise of Free Trade Imperialism: Classical Political Economy the Empire of Free Trade and Imperialism 1750-1850, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2004

Redman, D, The rise of political economy as a science: methodology and the classical economists, MIT Press, 1997