If committed to a particular set of beliefs and ideas, one must also be willing to adopt certain attitudes to demonstrate this commitment in everyday life. Political ideologies – beliefs, ideas and attitudes about politics – are often oriented towards political action by those subscribing to that ideology; however, commitment to the ideology also requires the application of those attitudes to everyday circumstances. It is hypocritical not to have everyday attitudes aligned with one's political beliefs.
Socialism is an example of an ideology that requires one to adopt socialist attitudes in everyday life, as well as in political action. An important aspect of socialism is the notion of egalitarianism – an example of an attitude that requires application in everyday life. Egalitarianism, when applied to socialist ideology, translates to a sense of community and sharing within society: "Equality must lead logically to community"1.
One subscribing to socialist attitudes must not only move for political action (such as redistributing of wealth) – they must also embrace the communal way of life and be willing to share. It is hypocritical to commit to socialist ideology without applying egalitarian ideas, such as the sharing and common ownership of wealth and goods, to both political action and everyday life. Socialist ideologies can be fundamentally viewed as anti-capitalist; a commitment to such views requires the realisation of both political actions and changes to everyday attitudes.
One who proclaims to uphold socialist attitudes can not, therefore, be opposed to change in a capitalist society. Although a Utopian socialist may reject political revolution, and a Reformist socialist may support improvements within the system, both would adopt similar (anti-capitalist) attitudes in everyday life: neither indulging in excess nor supporting exploitation that can occur between classes. The attitudes that indicate socialist beliefs in daily situations must align with the political beliefs and actions of socialism.
Moralist tendencies of socialism also call for alignment of daily attitudes with political actions. Critiques of capitalism suggest that capitalist society is inhumane, and that the bourgeois 'right' is institutionalised exploitation of the proletariat class, the "very people who produce society's wealth"2. Moralist attitudes seek to foster understanding amongst members of society as well as a sense of responsibility for the welfare of others.
These can not be realised simply through political actions: campaigns, revolutions and other political acts would be worthless, from the moralist point of view, without individuals' commitment to upholding moralist attitudes in everyday life. The term 'ideology' has been defined as "a way of translating ideas into practice"3. Commitment to a political ideology requires the application of political beliefs and ideas to everyday circumstances.
Whether demonstrating egalitarianism by sharing, the anti-capitalist choice to reject luxury or a moralist sense of responsibility for others, all socialist tendencies require not only political action but also adoption of socialist attitudes in daily life. The daily attitudes of socialist ideology must align with socialist political beliefs. In the words of Albert Einstein: "It is the duty of every citizen according to his best capacities to give validity to his convictions in political affairs. "4