It's because the media pundits have been doing a tight rope
walk by confining debate to the left-right axis, while the political
landscape is really TWO DIMENSIONAL!
Take a look at the Political Landscape Chart below and you'll
see a better way to portray your political preferences based on
your opinions about various forms of personal freedom. By showing
your positions on freedom as two separate X and Y components in
two dimensions -- with, as is customary, social freedoms on the
left and economic freedoms on the right -- this chart shows for
the first time the other two political poles rarely if ever recognized
or discussed as a possibility by the media pundits and political
elite. In this portrayal, the up, or libertarian, pole, represents
a very high level of both social and economic freedom, and the
down, or totalitarian, pole, represents a very low level of both
social and economic freedom. Of course, just as there are varying
degrees of left or right along the Left/Right axis between the
Left and Right poles, there are varying degrees of freedom along
the axis between the Up and Down poles. A moderately down position
is authoritarian, and a moderately up position is Libertarian-centrist.
By answering the questions on the Political Landscape Chart
you can find out where you really stand politically -- a place
sometimes referred to as your "political home". Just
mark your opinions on all 20 questions. Then count the number
of times you answered "mine" on social freedom questions
and draw a line parallel to the economic freedoms axis at a distance
equal to that number, then reverse the process for your responses
to questions on economic freedoms. The intersection of the two
lines you have drawn will show your political position or "home".
It's unlikely, but if your political home were to be at any of
the four corners of the chart, it would mean that you are a political
purist believing in one of these four "extreme" positions:
As you can see, the pure libertarian state represents the pro-freedom
halves of both the leftist and rightist agendas, while the totalitarian
state represents the anti-freedom halves of both those agendas.
Very few people will be close to any of the poles of this chart.
But in a country like the United States which proclaims its superiority
among the world's governments in preserving and protecting the
freedom of its citizens, and where all school children daily pledge
allegiance to the flag, ending with the words -- "with liberty
and justice for all", one would expect many Americans to
be in the upper quadrant, or the one-fourth of the chart labeled
The fact that Democrats tend to be "Leftists" who
like government to force people to be nice to others and to take
money from the people who've earned it and redistribute to those
who haven't, but tend to like freedom of choice generally in social
matters, means that they will score higher on the social freedoms
than on the economic freedoms.
The fact that Republicans tend to be "Rightists"
who like government to force people to obey their moral values
and say they do not like to take money from the people who've
earned it and redistribute it to those who haven't, and so want
to restrict choice in social matters while giving freedom of choice
in economic matters means that they will score higher on economic
freedom than on social freedom.
Libertarians tend to score higher on both kinds of freedom
and closer to the Up, or Libertarian pole. If you score higher
-- above 5 out of 10 -- in both social and economic freedoms,
you're closer to the Libertarian Party's positions than those
of either of the two older parties. If your score is 5,5 or 6,6
you're a Libertarian Centrist, and if you score 7,7 or higher,
you want a lot of freedom for yourself and others and are very
Libertarian in your thinking. Won't you try the quiz and see where
you stand? You may be surprised!
What's your political position?
Answer the questions below and find out!