4.3.4 Moral Influence in Politics

The Moral Dimension of power is most evident in people’s direct influence over each other’s behaviour, but moral pressure can be amplified by participation in politics.  People might try to exert political influence for economic reasons, or because they have strong views about how politics should be conducted, but sometimes they are driven by the sense of what is morally right or wrong.

Some people become politicians with a moral mission.  As described later (6.1.3), politicians have the power to change the lives of other people – affecting the law, the economy, and the interactions with the leaders of other countries.  Many more people want to influence those who are in politics, and they have various ways of doing so (6.6.1).

Here, the focus is on how moral issues are channelled into politics:

●  People’s moral values, such as their degree of concern for other people’s welfare, steer their personal involvement in politics (

●  They can join with others to form pressure groups to advance moral initiatives (

●  Religious organisations and other moral leaders can exert direct influence as spokespeople for all their followers (



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This page is intended to form part of Edition 4 of the Patterns of Power series of books.  An archived copy of it is held at https://www.patternsofpower.org/edition04/434.htm