"There are only two ways of telling the complete truth—anonymously and posthumously."Thomas Sowell

Friday, September 16, 2005

The Political Compass

I'm not at home (again, sadly), so I don't have access to my numerical score, but memory sez I came in a few ticks to the east and very close to the horizontal line.

It's called "The Political Compass," and seeks to blow past left and right partisanship, to seek light instead of heat. Seems relevant to the proceedings lately hereabouts.

Take the test first, then read what it's all about. Report your score if the spirit moves you. Labels suck, and there's more to Stalin and Gandhi than Fox News vs. CNN.


Burwell said...

Why not? I was just above the horizontal line, and three grid marks to the right of the vertical line.

Kathy Hutchins said...

Economic: 4.75 (positive means "right")

Social: -1.23 (negative means "libertarian")

Eyeballing the reference chart of famous people, I seem to be a clone of Milton Friedman, which sounds about right, I guess. I'm a little surprised I came up on the libertarian side, even though I am a lot more libertarian than, say, my husband, because usually these tests call prolife views fascist.

The Classic Liberal Anonymous said...

I did not like the wording of the questions one bit.

I came out a 4.88/0.88 ... I thought I'd be negative on the 2nd number.

Here's one example of a poorly worded question:

"If economic globalisation is inevitable, it should primarily serve humanity rather than the interests of trans-national corporations."

I don't like the use of the word "should" as that implies that there is some sort of governing body making decisions as to who is served.

A simpler (too simple) quiz is here.

James Elliott said...

I love this test, always have. Economic Left -8.38, Libertarian -7.28. James Elliott: More liberal than Gandhi. So he'll never hold public office.

The Liberal Anonymous said...

Economic Left/Right: -9.38, Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.85.

So there you have it.

connie deady said...

Wow, I didn't end up with the highest minus score.

I'm a exactly the same on both sides -.538 economic and social.

I'm sure Tom's not surprised that I'm an economic leftist and a social libertarian.

Tom Van Dyke said...


But I'm still wondering how one enforces communitarianism without resorting to authoritarianism. I mean, you can only sing "Kumbaya" so many times...

Kathy Hutchins said...

I'm still wondering how one enforces communitarianism without resorting to authoritarianism.

I live in close proximity to a subset of what I believe is one of the few groups to have built a successful communitarian community spanning many generations: the St. Mary's County Amish. They are motivated by strongly held common beliefs and mutually agreed-upon norms of behavior, and enforce the behavior consistent with the group's survival by some fairly strict social shaming mechanisms. I don't see how less conformity-enforcing measures could work to curb the natural human tendencies to free-ride the situation, yet these are the very sorts of social fetters that drive people like Tlaloc crazy. (Remember he said he'd rather take welfare from government than a private group, because the group might try to force some religious belief in his face?)

you can only sing "Kumbaya" so many times

Sing it around here more than once, and the discussion will switch to my views on the 2nd Amendment very very quickly.

connie deady said...

[i]But I'm still wondering how one enforces communitarianism without resorting to authoritarianism. I mean, you can only sing "Kumbaya" so many times...[/i]

I don't think you can. That's why I'm a social libertarian. It seems to me that anything that once you create a society (community/government) you automatically surrender some of your rights to be individual and non-conformist. Social mores can become laws, or in the Amish case, such strongly held community values that you are shamed and shunned if you don't hold them.

I've come quite a ways from being Marxist precisely for that reason.

Tlaloc said...

Economic Left/Right: -6.88
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05

puts me right in the range of the Dalai Lama and Gandhi. Strange company since I have no problem with violence when used intelligently.

Tlaloc said...

Doh sorry, Nelson Mandela, not Gandhi.

James Elliott said...

I'm more liberal than Tlaloc? Wow.

Tlaloc said...

this kind of thing always has to be taken with a big chunk of rock salt.

Many questions if worded slightly differently would have drastically changed my replies.