Political quizzes

May 2, 2009 – 9:36 pm by John

I recently took this political-spectrum quiz that actually seemed somewhat worthwhile and substantive, unlike a few quizzes of the same type that I’ve taken before. The same site has several more political quizzes that I haven’t taken and don’t plan to, but some of them also looked like they had potential to be non-idiotic.

Despite my relative approval of most of the questions and the answer choices in that quiz, its placement of me on its political grid seemed a bit discordant with several of my answers and from their own labeling of my politics as culturally liberal:

My Political Views
I am a far-right social libertarian
Right: 9.5, Libertarian: 9.74

Political Spectrum Quiz


They labeled me “far-right libertarian” despite the presence of few, if any, questions that self-described left-libertarians would say satisfactorily delineate left-libertarians from…other libertarians. (I’d wager.) I don’t think anarcho-libertarians who don’t describe themselves as left-libertarian typically call themselves “right-libertarian”; I don’t think left-libertarians typically call them that, either (at lease I’ve only seen it a few times, and only recently); and I sure as hell don’t think an online political quiz written by non-anarchists could reliably distinguish between the two.

That being said, if, as I suspect, the authors’ political philosophies are not much more refined than “Democrat = Liberal, Republican = Conservative…and, oh, yeah, there are those Libertarians, and Greens, and other weirdos,” then how the hell could their quiz simultaneously give “far-right” and “culturally liberal” results? I mean, you can quibble about the historical origins and literal meanings of these words all you want, but to everyone I know here in 21st-century Amerika, those two are mutually exclusive. It fails by its own unrefined standards.

My Foreign Policy Views
Score: -8.32


My Culture War Stance
Score: -5.23

I have a feeling many left-libertarians would get a similar result to mine, because that algorithm just doesn’t know what it’s talking about when it refers to “left-libertarian” and “right-libertarian.” (In all fairness, sometimes I don’t, either!) I think if it were more accurate, it would classify me as a middle-libertarian, or, as FSK says, an “up-libertarian.” I find it hard to believe I could agree with so much of what Professor Long or Mike Gogulski say, and get so annoyed and incensed by Kinsella and De Coster some of the time, without having a healthy mix of left- and right-libertarian in me.

Perhaps I refused to take a “side” in the libertarian-philosophy debate because I’m wishy-washy and passive in most aspects of my life, or perhaps it’s because my training in science makes me more acutely aware that few things in the universe are as clear-cut and absolute as anyone asserts, at least at first. I know for sure that one reason is that both types of societies, organizations, neighborhoods, and companies could and probably would exist in a free society. No, I don’t know enough about law or running a business to assert whether limited-liability incorporation would or should exist in a free society.

On a related note, I still like the first political quiz I ever heard about, which was advocated by fascist, neocon warmonger and all-around State lover Neal Boortz: the World’s Smallest Political Quiz. I am, of course, 100% libertarian on that.

I recall at least two instances where liberals complained about that quiz, saying it’s too skewed towards libertarianism—that it’s too simplistic and short to get a good sense of what political ideology someone really holds, so it’s too likely that non-libertarians will give answers that are interpreted by that quiz as being libertarian. I disagree. I think most libertarians would say a consistent application of universal principles of morality and human relationships inexorably results in anarchist libertarianism. Anthony Gregory agrees.

Hat tip: Cork

Bookmark and Share

Trackback URL for this entry is: http://www.blagnet.net/2009/05/02/political-quizzes/trackback/

  1. 3 Responses to “Political quizzes”

  2. I think most libertarians would say a consistent application of universal principles of morality and human relationships inexorably results in anarchist libertarianism.

    Perhaps, but they'd have to be really consistent libertarians to get there :)

    By mike on May 4, 2009

  3. I think most libertarians would say a consistent application of universal principles of morality and human relationships inexorably results in anarchist libertarianism.

    Perhaps, but they'd have to be really consistent libertarians to get there :)

    (hey, lookit that! My OpenID server finally works!)

    By Mike Gogulski on May 4, 2009

  4. Yep. I'm a libertarian snob: if you aren't an anarchist yet, you aren't pure enough for me to call you a real libertarian.

    By John on May 4, 2009

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.