I’ve wrestled with many attempts to construct political attitude models. You know, ways to “chart” where someone lies (no pun intended) on the great landscape of political persuasion. Everyone realizes that the standard liberal to conservative spectrum is too simplistic to be very revealing and you need another dimension. The additional “y’ axis is usually a variation of totalitarian to libertarian, or government control to personal freedom scale. I am fascinated by the work of Nolan, Pournelle, Slomp and especially the pioneering work of Leonard W. Ferguson in the 50’s. There’s quite a few of these two dimensional models floating around on the Web with little questionaires that determine where your “dot” goes on the chart Deemed as mere diversions and novelties by serious scholars, they are nonetheless fun and interesting to take. I do them from time to time just to make sure I actually HAVE a real point of view and aren’t just aimlessly drifting around the chart. What I have discovered truly puzzled me for a while until I realized that I am a Radicalized Independent. I am not a sleepy centrist who has no real passion for the issues, I care a lot. But, my strongly held positions average out…sometimes I agree with the left, sometimes the right. Sometimes I think they are both wrong. That would seem to explain my propensity for getting into scraps with both Democrat Progressives and Tea Party Republicans. But, as a Radicalized Independent, I am compelled to defend my views even if I don’t fit as a blue round peg or a square red one. I am a hopeless hexagon that fits into neither, but I may now be part of the majority.
I’ve included my results on two of the more popular self-tests on the net, The Worlds Smallest Political Quiz and Political Compass. At first I was depressed to be almost exactly under Dennis Kucinich’s dot, but the real pressing question concerned the close proximity of the cluster of mainstream candidates. How could they be so close together when the political rhetoric is so divisive? There had to be a better way to plot this stuff…a new set of values for the “y” coordinates that would be more accurate. After almost and hour and a half of exhaustive research and testing the political scientists at the The Atomic Monkey Think Tank have developed the ONE TRUE POLITICAL INDICATOR CHART. The breakthrough came when we discovered that using the government control to personal freedom part of the scale was correct, but the box still needed to be tilted. This created compression in the corners where, oddly enough, both ends of the political spectrum blurred into the same animal. The common denominator was the need to acquire and hold power. Without “big government” there is no prize worth fighting over. Politicians became virtually indistinguishable as they compressed further toward the boiling partisan stew in the bottom corner of the chart.