Political orientation is not a one-dimensional matter.

I recently discovered an interesting quiz on politicalcompass.org where one can find out not only if they’re political orientation is to the left or right but also authoritarian or libertarian, which is just as significant. There’s also information on where past and current leaders and candidates score.



Many people tend to view politics as left or right, overlooking the degree of such. And many don’t realize the authority factor. Go far enough towards authority and left versus right becomes less relevant. Being extremely leftist AND authoritarian might seem to be an oxymoron, but that’s where Stalin was. Hitler was just as authoritarian but a lot more to the right. Would you want to have to make a choice of whom to live under?

Authoritarianism is great when you’re a sadist and your people are in charge, socking it to some group of people you find personally offensive or ram-rodding idealistic policy. If and inevitably when you find yourself in the outside minority on an issue, it’s just fascism and left-right doesn’t matter as much.

Go too far towards the libertarian end and you get anarchy. Civilized society cannot exist without some regulation to protect it’s citizens from harm. Would you want to live in a place where it’s everyone for themselves? Or where a group of self-appointed individuals call all the shots?

The political climate in the US has seen both parties drifting to the right and of more concern well towards the authoritarian end of the spectrum. The differences might still be in some details, but both parties are high on using liberal amounts of force to propagate political agendas. So while there may be an advantage with one party in one aspect, it comes at great cost in another matter. I think that’s why I find the current parties to be a disappointment: in the end, there isn’t really much choice.


— Kenn Ranous

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