Political Compass

digitalbeachbum
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Political Compass

I found this site over a decade ago and went back to it recently to investigate some items. I found this chart of the most recent election.

http://www.politicalcompass.org/uselection2012

Ever since my college class of American History I realized that the Democrats and the Republicans are actually both "right" on the political spectrum. I know we here in America call one side Left and the other Right, but on the larger scale of political views, Democrats and Republicans are actually both on the right.

I am reminded of the country of my wife, El Salvador, where they have 12 political parties trying to fight for the Presidency. I also have brother-in-laws in Costa Rica with just as many political parties. It's all very confusing because coming from America we are actually taught incorrectly and seeing such a large scale spectrum of political views is overwhelming for the first time.

We in America have shit so backwards some times. We get set in our ways and we think that the Earth revolves around us. We think we have been doing "whatever" for so long that it is the only way things are done.

We have a lot to learn as Americans. It should be mandatory that students travel the world to get some of their credits for graduation. It might help us create a better society.

Free will is an illusion. People always choose the perceived path of greatest pleasure.

-Scott Adams


Anonymouse
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digitalbeachbum wrote:Ever

digitalbeachbum wrote:
Ever since my college class of American History I realized that the Democrats and the Republicans are actually both "right" on the political spectrum. I know we here in America call one side Left and the other Right, but on the larger scale of political views, Democrats and Republicans are actually both on the right.
 

 

You put your finger on something that confuses the heck out of me whenever American politics comes up. You guys just got to pick one of two conservatives, and people are STILL whining about socialism. I really, really don't get it. 

I sometimes think about translating the manifesto of an actual leftist party, and then reading it to an American. Instant heart attack.


digitalbeachbum
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Anonymouse

Anonymouse wrote:

digitalbeachbum wrote:
Ever since my college class of American History I realized that the Democrats and the Republicans are actually both "right" on the political spectrum. I know we here in America call one side Left and the other Right, but on the larger scale of political views, Democrats and Republicans are actually both on the right.
 

 

You put your finger on something that confuses the heck out of me whenever American politics comes up. You guys just got to pick one of two conservatives, and people are STILL whining about socialism. I really, really don't get it. 

I sometimes think about translating the manifesto of an actual leftist party, and then reading it to an American. Instant heart attack.

I agree.

When I was in Costa Rica I talked to my brother-in-laws about the political parties available and what they told me freaked me out.

What we call "left" in America is not LEFT, it's right. Left is a COMPLETELY different type of political ideology.

I tried to explain this to the entire family years ago but none of them would listen to me. I tried to explain that Clinton and Bush were the same in the sense that they are both "right" in nature but I nearly got booted out of the house when the entire family went up against me.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left%E2%80%93right_politics

 

Contemporary usage in the United States

The terms left-wing and right-wing are widely used in the United States but, as on the global level, there is no firm consensus about their meaning. The only aspect which is generally agreed upon is that they are the defining opposites of the United States political spectrum. Left and right in the U.S. are generally associated with liberal and conservative respectively, although the meanings of the two sets of terms do not entirely coincide. Depending on the political affiliation of the individual using them, these terms can be spoken with varying implications. A 2005 poll of 2,209 American adults showed that "respondents generally viewed the paired concepts liberals and left-wingers and conservatives and right-wingers as possessing, respectively, generally similar political beliefs", but also showed that around ten percent fewer respondents understood the terms left and right than understood the terms liberal and conservative.[37]

The contemporary Left in the United States is usually understood as a category including New Deal liberals, Rawlsian liberals, social democrats and civil libertarians, and is generally identified with the Democratic Party. In general, left-wing implies a commitment to egalitarianism, support for social policies that favor the working class, and multiculturalism. The contemporary Left usually defines itself as promoting government regulation of business, commerce and industry; protection of fundamental rights such as freedom of speech and freedom of religion; and government intervention on behalf of racial, ethnic, and sexual minorities and the working class.[38]

The contemporary Right in the United States is usually understood as a category including social conservatives, Christian conservatives and free market liberals, and is generally identified with the Republican Party. In general, right-wing implies a commitment to conservative Christian values, support for a free-market system, and "traditional family values". The contemporary Right usually defines itself as promoting deregulation of banking, commerce, and industry.[citation needed]

Whether something is to your left or to your right depends on where you stand. According to liberal commentator David Sirota, writing in Salon.com, "On economic issues, we are often told that right is center, center is left, and left is fringe."[39]

Relevance of the terms today

Main article: Political spectrum

Some political scientists have suggested that the classifications of "left" and "right" are no longer meaningful in the modern complex world. Although these terms continue to be used, they advocate a more complex spectrum that attempts to combine political, economic and social dimensions.[40]

However, a survey conducted between 1983 and 1994 by Bob Altemeyer of Canadian legislative caucuses showed an 82% correlation between party affiliation and score on a scale for right-wing authoritarianism when comparing right-wing and social democratic caucuses. There was a wide gap between the scores of the two groups which was filled by liberal caucuses. His survey of American legislative caucuses showed scores by American Republicans and Democrats were similar to the Canadian Right and liberals, with a 44% correlation between party affilitation and score.[41]

Norberto Bobbio saw the polarization of the Italian Chamber of Deputies in the 1990s as evidence that the linear left/right axis remained valid. He thought that the argument that the spectrum had disappeared occurred when either the Left or Right were weak. The dominant side would claim that its ideology was the only possible one, while the weaker side would minimize its differences. He saw the Left and Right not in absolute terms, but as relative concepts that would vary over time. The key distinction was one of equality. The Right was committed to inequality while the further left one went the more committed to equality one was. In his view, the left/right axis could be applied to any time period.[42]

The political philosopher Charles Blattberg has proposed response to conflict as the basis of a reinterpreted political spectrum. According to Blattberg, those who would respond to conflict with conversation should be considered as on the left, with negotiation as in the centre, and with force as on the right. See his essay "Political Philosophies and Political Ideologies."[43]

Libertarian writer David Boaz argued that terms left and right are used to spin a particular point of view rather than as simple descriptors, with those on the "left" typically emphasizing their support for working people and accusing the right of supporting the interests of the upper class, and those on the "right" usually emphasizing their support for individualism and accusing the Left of supporting collectivism. Boaz asserts that arguments about the way the words should be used often displaces arguments about policy by raising emotional prejudice against a preconceived notion of what the terms mean.[44]

Free will is an illusion. People always choose the perceived path of greatest pleasure.

-Scott Adams