When people attach political labels to themselves and others it is usually a two label fits all thing. The average person thinks in terms of liberal or conservative without much thought to the infinite variety or degrees of these opposing ideologies. When teaching American Government I would draw a long line on the black board and talk about the political and fiscal middle and what came into play as one’s views changed as they moved away from that middle.
I don’t know if tests or surveys existed at the time but in today’s computerized world there are many online services that will give you an idea of just how your views average out. One
of these is The Political Compass. Besides lots of data and explanations the site contains a collection of survey questions. After you have provided answers a chart will be created showing you just how your views average out and whose views are similar to yours.
In my case I turned out a little more liberal than I thought I was. While I’ve always known I was socially liberal I thought my fiscal views were closer to the middle if not a little on the right of middle. TPC’s survey said otherwise but I do understand why. Several questions had to do with my feelings about large and powerful corporations and I didn’t score them very high. Especially after seeing what Wall Street did to the economy and how much power big corporations have acquired over American politics. While I am a supporter of capitalism I don’t support unfettered capitalism. I want powerful corporations reigned in and both monitored and controlled by government. That I support universal Medicare for all, public education, public hospitals and a graduated tax structure makes me somewhat socialistic. That’s why I’m surprised I didn’t score a little higher up on the scale, towards a controlled economy.
To my surprise and delight the person’s views who best represent my own was Mahatma Gandhi with the Dalai Lama and Nelson Mandela a stones throw away. To me that’s pretty good company to be running around with.
Something that Republicans, especially those with Tea Party views, may not like is where president Obama and the GOP’s 2012 candidate landed on the TPC chart. Both fiscally and politically their positions were within a gnat’s but of each other. If this survey has any accuracy, and it may not, it tears at the heart of the TP’s claims about Obama being a socialist, communist, liberal, who is destroying American free enterprise. Apparently he is no more a commie than Rommie!