Where do you classify yourself in the political spectrum – liberal, conservative, libertarian, statist or centrist?
I just came across a smart little political quiz which has me pegged as a liberal leaning toward centrist status (70/20 on the personal/economic scale). A fair assessment, I think. The 10 question quiz, which has been around for awhile, has been praised by both the Washington Post and Fraser Institute as being accurate in assessing one’s political leanings.
In researching the history of the World’s Smallest Political Quiz, I came across this tidbit of information.
On August 23, 2000, Portrait of America conducted a national telephone survey of 822 likely voters. Using the same questions and scale, the survey found 32% of American voters are centrists; 16% are libertarians; 14% are authoritarians; 13% liberal; 7% are conservative; and, 17% border one or more categories.
The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.
Interesting. In a world where political thought is controlled by 24 hour cable news, a gazillion political blogs as well as social media like Twitter broadcasting everyone’s political opinion (yes, and politician’s penises too), one can be forgiven if they sometimes believe that the country is neatly divided between left and right. As with most things in life, it’s the shades of gray which lie (lay?..no, I’m quite sure it’s lie…I hate irregular verbs) between the extreme ends which tell the true story. In a world of 20 second sound bites and diminishing attention spans, complexity has become a dirty word. For many, it is simpler and less time consuming to have their beliefs controlled by irrational fear as dictated by some charlatan with a chalkboard and an agenda. Research and critical thinking, after all, takes effort.
Try the quiz and let us know if you’re at all surprised by the results.
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