|Part of a series on|
| Liberalism |
in the United Kingdom
|Part of a series on|
Manchester Liberalism (also called the Manchester School, Manchester Capitalism and Manchesterism) comprises the political, economic and social movements of the 19th century that originated in Manchester, England. Led by Richard Cobden and John Bright, it won a wide hearing for its argument that free trade would lead to a more equitable society, making essential products available to all. Its most famous activity was the Anti-Corn Law League that called for repeal of the Corn Laws that kept food prices high. It expounded the social and economic implications of free trade and laissez-faire capitalism. The Manchester School took the theories of economic liberalism advocated by classical economists such as Adam Smith and made them the basis for government policy. It also promoted pacifism, anti-slavery, freedom of the press and separation of church and state. 
Manchester was the hub of the world's textile manufacturing industry, and had a large population of factory workers who were disadvantaged by the Corn Laws, the protectionist policy that imposed tariffs on imported wheat and therefore increased the price of food. The Corn Laws were supported by the land-owning aristocracy because they reduced foreign competition and allowed landowners to keep grain prices high. That increased the profits from agriculture as the population expanded. However, the operation of the Corn Laws meant that factory workers in the textile mills of northern England were faced with increasing food prices. In turn, mill owners had to pay higher wages, which meant that the price of finished goods was higher and the foreign trade competitiveness of their products was reduced.
Mercantilism holds that a country’s prosperity is dependent on large exports, but limited imports of goods. At the beginning of the 19th century, trade in Britain was still subject to import quotas, price ceilings and other state interventions. That led to shortages of certain goods in British markets, in particular corn (grains usually requiring grinding, most often, but not always wheat).
Manchester became the headquarters of the Anti-Corn Law League from 1839. The League campaigned against the Corn Laws, which it said would reduce food prices and increase the competitiveness of manufactured goods abroad. Manchester Liberalism grew out of that movement. That has led to the situation seen in modern Britain, where the country benefits from less expensive food, imported from trading partners, and those partners in turn benefit from less expensive goods imported from Britain, in a system of globalised cooperation in production.
Manchester Liberalism has a theoretical basis in the writings of Adam Smith, David Hume and Jean-Baptiste Say.
The great champions of the Manchester School were Richard Cobden and John Bright. As well as being advocates of free trade,  they were radical opponents of war and imperialism, and proponents of peaceful relations between peoples. The "Little Englander" movement saw little benefit in paying taxes to defend colonies such as Canada, which contributed little trade to Manchester manufacturers and could not supply their main raw material of cotton.  Manchesterism can therefore be seen as a belief in free and consensual relations amongst individuals and groups at all levels.[ citation needed ] Cobden's efforts to promote free trade were always instrumental in what he deemed the highest moral purpose, i.e. the promotion of peace on earth and goodwill among men.[ citation needed ]
In January 1848, Conservative Benjamin Disraeli first used the term "the Manchester School".  According to historian Ralph Raico and as indicated by the German liberal Julius Faucher in 1870, the term "Manchesterism" was invented by Ferdinand Lassalle (the founder of German socialism) and was meant as an abusive term. 
Classical liberalism is a political tradition and a branch of liberalism that advocates free market and laissez-faire economics; civil liberties under the rule of law with especial emphasis on individual autonomy, limited government, economic freedom, political freedom and freedom of speech. It gained full flowering in the early 18th century, building on ideas stemming at least as far back as the 13th century within the Iberian, Anglo-Saxon, and central European contexts and was foundational to the American Revolution and "American Project" more broadly.
In economics, a free market is an economic system in which the prices of goods and services are determined by supply and demand expressed by sellers and buyers. Such markets, as modeled, operate without the intervention of government or any other external authority. Proponents of the free market as a normative ideal contrast it with a regulated market, in which a government intervenes in supply and demand by means of various methods such as taxes or regulations. In an idealized free market economy, prices for goods and services are set solely by the bids and offers of the participants.
Gustave de Molinari was a Belgian political economist and French Liberal School theorist associated with French laissez-faire economists such as Frédéric Bastiat and Hippolyte Castille.
A market economy is an economic system in which the decisions regarding investment, production and distribution to the consumers are guided by the price signals created by the forces of supply and demand, where all suppliers and consumers are unimpeded by price controls or restrictions on contract freedom. The major characteristic of a market economy is the existence of factor markets that play a dominant role in the allocation of capital and the factors of production.
Free trade is a trade policy that does not restrict imports or exports. It can also be understood as the free market idea applied to international trade. In government, free trade is predominantly advocated by political parties that hold economically liberal positions, while economic nationalist and left-wing political parties generally support protectionism, the opposite of free trade.
The Corn Laws were tariffs and other trade restrictions on imported food and corn enforced in the United Kingdom between 1815 and 1846. The word corn in British English denotes all cereal grains, including wheat, oats and barley. They were designed to keep corn prices high to favour domestic producers, and represented British mercantilism. The Corn Laws blocked the import of cheap corn, initially by simply forbidding importation below a set price, and later by imposing steep import duties, making it too expensive to import it from abroad, even when food supplies were short. The House of Commons passed the corn law bill on March 10, 1815, the House of Lords on March 20 and the bill received Royal assent on March 23, 1815.
Laissez-faire is an economic system in which transactions between private groups of people are free from any form of economic interventionism deriving from special interest groups. As a system of thought, laissez-faire rests on the following axioms: "the individual is the basic unit in society, i.e. the standard of measurement in social calculus; the individual has a natural right to freedom; and the physical order of nature is a harmonious and self-regulating system."
John Bright was a British Radical and Liberal statesman, one of the greatest orators of his generation and a promoter of free trade policies.
Richard Cobden was an English Radical and Liberal politician, manufacturer, and a campaigner for free trade and peace. He was associated with the Anti-Corn Law League and the Cobden–Chevalier Treaty.
The Anti-Corn Law League was a successful political movement in Great Britain aimed at the abolition of the unpopular Corn Laws, which protected landowners’ interests by levying taxes on imported wheat, thus raising the price of bread at a time when factory-owners were trying to cut wages. The League was a middle-class nationwide organisation that held many well-attended rallies on the premise that a crusade was needed to convince parliament to repeal the corn laws. Its long-term goals included the removal of feudal privileges, which it denounced as impeding progress, lowering economic well-being, and restricting freedom. The League played little role in the final act in 1846 when Sir Robert Peel led the successful battle for repeal. However, its experience provided a model that was widely adopted in Britain and other democratic nations to demonstrate the organisation of a political pressure group with the popular base.
The 1852 United Kingdom general election was a watershed in the formation of the modern political parties of Britain. Following 1852, the Tory/Conservative party became, more completely, the party of the rural aristocracy, while the Whig/Liberal party became the party of the rising urban bourgeoisie in Britain. The results of the election were extremely close in terms of the numbers of seats won by the two main parties.
The Radicals were a loose parliamentary political grouping in Great Britain and Ireland in the early to mid-19th century who drew on earlier ideas of radicalism and helped to transform the Whigs into the Liberal Party.
Cobdenism is an economic ideology which perceives international free trade and a non-interventionist foreign policy as the key requirements for prosperity and world peace. It is named after the British statesman and economist Richard Cobden and had its heyday of political influence in the British Empire during the mid-19th century, amidst and after the endeavour to abolish the Corn Laws.
Centre-right politics lean to the right of the political spectrum, but are closer to the centre. From the 1780s to the 1880s, there was a shift in the Western world of social class structure and the economy, moving away from the nobility and mercantilism, towards capitalism. This general economic shift toward capitalism affected centre-right movements, such as the Conservative Party of the United Kingdom, which responded by becoming supportive of capitalism.
Economic progressivism or fiscalprogressivism is a political and economic philosophy incorporating the socioeconomic principles of social democrats and political progressives. These views are often rooted in the concept of social justice and have the goal of improving the human condition through government regulation, social protections and the maintenance of public goods. It is not to be confused with the more general idea of progress in relation to economic growth.
Julius Faucher was a German journalist and a significant advocate of liberalism and free trade. He was one of the first to advocate privatizing the security functions of the state, which would eliminate taxation. Ralph Raico described his idea as "a form of individualist anarchism, or, as it would be called today, anarcho-capitalism or market anarchism".
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to libertarianism, a political philosophy that upholds liberty as its principal objective. As a result, libertarians seek to maximize autonomy and freedom of choice, emphasizing political freedom, voluntary association and the primacy of individual judgment.
Liberalism is a political and moral philosophy based on the rights of the individual, liberty, consent of the governed, political equality and equality before the law. Liberals espouse various views depending on their understanding of these principles. However, they generally support private property, market economies, individual rights, liberal democracy, secularism, rule of law, economic and political freedom, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, and freedom of religion. Liberalism is frequently cited as the dominant ideology of modern times.
Economic liberalism is a political and economic ideology that supports a market economy based on individualism and private property in the means of production. Adam Smith is considered one of the primary initial writers on economic liberalism, and his writing is generally regarded as representing the economic expression of 19th-century liberalism up until the Great Depression and rise of Keynesianism in the 20th century. Historically, economic liberalism arose in response to feudalism and mercantilism.
Several economic theories of the first half of the 19th century were influenced by Romanticism, most notably those developed by Adam Müller, Simonde de Sismondi, Johann Gottlieb Fichte and Thomas Carlyle. Michael Löwy and Robert Sayre first formulated their thesis about Romanticism as an anti-capitalist and anti-modernist worldview in a 1984 article called "Figures of Romantic Anti-capitalism". Romantic anti-capitalism was a wide spectrum of opposition to capitalism, ultimately tracing its roots back to the Romantic movement of the early 19th century, but acquiring a new impetus in the latter part of the 19th century.