My Political Compass Test Result

Posted by RogerMalcolm 6 years, 4 months ago to Philosophy
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Would anyone like to debate where Ayn Rand would fall on this? I have found a couple examples placing her at the center of the Libertarian/Right and another placing her more so at the farthest point of the Libertarian/Right.

As well, I would encourage a discussion on the understanding of Ayn's view on Libertarians as in comparison to Objectivism and I do wish to know anyone's understanding of romantic realism to a deeper degree. The latter perhaps deserves it's own post.

SOURCE URL: http://politicalcompass.org/test


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  • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 6 years, 4 months ago
    Trying to guess what Ayn Rand would say, I stopped after the first display. The muddle mish-mash of floating abstractions would have lost her sooner than it lost me. The poll has no rational semblance of integrated knowledge. Even the NYT-CBS on the Tea Party was constructed better.

    If you want to know what Ayn Rand "would" say, just read what she DID say. Read "The Virtue of Selfishness" and "Capitalism: the Unknown Ideal" and "Philosophy: Who Needs It" and "The Romantic Manifesto" and "The Anti-Industrial Revolution." You can find the Objectivist Newsletter, the Objectivist, and the Ayn Rand Letter in your library or via your local library's InterLibrary Loan ("I-L-L").

    You want to know romantic realism to a deeper degree, but deeper compared to what? Have you read "The Romantic Manifesto"?

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    • Posted by 6 years, 4 months ago
      I had recently started reading For the New Intellectual after reading LetsShrug's Producer of the week column.

      I hadn't came across the The Romantic Manifesto in any of my reading yet but I will be sure to locate it. Thank you. I had came across her views somewhere discussing romantic realism and how she wrote the way she saw man should be which is the way I believe I write my characters. Though I didn't quite understand how this is so different from romanticism. I'm sure this can be answer in her work though.
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      • Posted by Non_mooching_artist 6 years, 4 months ago
        I've read the Romantic Manifesto. Powerful read, and poignant. It solidified my own personal take regarding art/artists, and the role they play in a society that puts forth that garbage is art, which is just a reflection of the artist himself. Interesting. Amazon has it. :-)
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  • Posted by DrZarkov99 6 years, 4 months ago
    For starters, the paradigm is wrong. The "left vs right" is a phony distinction, when the true political spectrum runs from authoritarian (absolute government control) to anarchist (unrestricted individualism, without government control). For individual freedom, it matters little whether the model is a theocratic state with severe restrictions on personal liberty, or a "bread and circuses" model that keeps people trivialized and entertained, so long as they don't question the state authority.

    Both of the latter authoritarian constructs are based on a two-class society of the elite and the commoners. We are gravitating toward the "bread and circuses" model here in the U.S., with the idea of a common level of just enough material wealth to keep people satisfied just enough to tolerate obedience to an elitist-controlled central authority.

    Objectivism is in another dimension, based on a society of worth, where one's freedom and material wealth is whatever you're willing to make the effort to achieve. This is entirely different from the authoritarian-anarchist spectrum, which is based on a model of state power.
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  • Posted by susan042462 6 years, 4 months ago
    I took the test and noticed a few of the questions were not well written which made their actual meaning hard to understand. I ended up close to center of libertarian-right. It was kind of interesting asking myself some of those questions. I really had not thought about those things before.
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  • Posted by edgycater 6 years, 4 months ago
    I teach U.S. History and U.S. Government and one of my colleagues loves to use the Political Compass exercise in his class. Unfortunately, he is a rabid leftist, so he doesn't point out the flaws. The bizarre results that some mentioned are largely because the political definitions are based on European politics where socialism is a long-established norm (unlike the U.S. where we are largely in denial about how much of Marx's ideology has been adopted). That is why even American Democrats can show up as "conservative" and establishment Republicans are hard-core, extreme "conservatives."

    If political tests are interesting to you, the one created by Pew Research probably yields more accurate results:

    http://www.people-press.org/typology/qui...

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  • Posted by chcollinsjr 6 years, 4 months ago
    Having read Ayn Rand since 1959, I try to stick to the practical as she did -- core principals rather than individual issues and "feelings". Mine are: To qualify as rational, government should, no must, be 1)Constitutional, 2)Small, 3) cheap [read-frugal with our earnings], and 4)non-intrusive.

    The rest is, as Rabbi Hillel wrote, commentary.

    .
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  • Posted by khalling 6 years, 4 months ago
    roger,
    the libertarian movement is not a complete philosophy. It starts with the axiom of non-aggression principle. But this fails without an understanding of property rights. It's actually a step backwards from Locke's axiom I own myself. Libertarianism is indifferent to Reason. Indifferent to A is A. so, irrational concepts might fly.
    what's currently in the works? a roller derby short documentary? I would love to watch!
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    • Posted by selfgov2000 6 years, 4 months ago
      Hmmm, so if someone doesn't have what you would consider an adequate understanding of property rights, but lives an honest and peaceful life, forsaking the initiation of force or fraud, getting whatever they want through trade and persuasion, would you forcefully impose your worldview on them?
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      • Posted by Lucky 6 years, 4 months ago
        A question for a question-
        Would it be honest for this person to copy something you have designed, invented, composed or written, and claim it as their own, or,
        to acknowledge the source but use it for their own purposes and gain without permission?
        If they act out of mistaken belief is it then ok?
        Going further than your example, if this person had a slave, some presumption of force can be assumed -so not 'peaceful'. Or if they stole from others, again not honest, then, are you entitled to use force to protect or recompense the victim? Under objectivism, there may be no obligation, but may you? May force be used to protect property or to recover stolen property? Does you answer depend on whether it is yours or another's property?
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        • Posted by selfgov2000 6 years, 4 months ago
          What on earth did I say that caused you to think I considered theft of property to be honest and ownership of a slave to be peaceful? Again, what did I say that led you to believe I was opposed to forceful recovery of stolen property (mine or anyone elses)?
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          • Posted by Lucky 6 years, 4 months ago
            Yes of course- there is no statement from you that you are against recovery of stolen property by force. Suppose force is used to recover stolen property, and suppose the thief lacked 'an adequate understanding of property rights', then the use of such force is an imposition against his world view. Your post above is good and my questions are follow up pointers on the subjects of what is property, and how should it be protected.
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            • Posted by selfgov2000 6 years, 4 months ago
              I can't agree that "the use of such force is an imposition against his world view" just because of his/her relative ignorance of property rights. In my libertarian view personal responsibility must go along with individual liberty. I'm not sure how people get the idea that a lack of desire for the initiation of force implies a lack of desire to hold individuals accountable for their actions.
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      • Posted by khalling 6 years, 4 months ago
        adequate understanding of property rights does not mean a person is immoral, I agree. However, it is important to have an adequate understanding of property rights in order to create a free society. I don't have an adequate understanding of genetics, but I benefit from people who create genetic testing of diseases, for instance. It's important for people to continue to do research and understand these things.
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        • Posted by selfgov2000 6 years, 4 months ago
          My only question here would be...can a really free society be created while holding to the notion of the necessity of even a miniscule amount of initiation of force, deadly if necessary, to accomplish social or political goals (ie. political government)? Doesn't the existence of political government require either the surrender or taking of some portion of self-ownership (self-ownership, in my understanding of libertarian philosophy, being the beginning and underlying concept of liberty)?
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          • Posted by khalling 6 years, 4 months ago
            You give up a limited amt of right for self defense -it 's efficient compared to vigilantism. That in no way gives them no right to initiate force. Without such you would spend all of your time protecting yourself. Locke ' s principle that you own yourself is much more powerful and elegant solution than non -aggression principle. It explains why the orchard owner is not initiating force every time he demands payment for his fruit. Or an inventor for his invention or a teacher to be compensated for teaching. All of contract and criminal law basis
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            • Posted by selfgov2000 6 years, 4 months ago
              I guess it's a bit silly for libertarians and objectivists to be having pissing contests with each other since the difference between our positions is all but indiscernible to the vast majority of the society which drives this abysmal mess. Reason on... ;-)
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              • Posted by khalling 6 years, 4 months ago
                hey-girl here! I can pee on stuff-but girls don't have pissing contests-that I am aware of. I'm sure there's a youtube.
                My son and I have this philosophical conversation alot. It's an important one. Consider reading David Kelley's excellent paper on Hayek vs rand. happy to discuss it with you if you're interested!
                http://www.atlassociety.org/hayek-ayn-ra...
                this is on epistemology, but he takes it all the way up through political/economic freedom. What we're getting to here is a discussion on the limits of reason.
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                • Posted by selfgov2000 6 years, 4 months ago
                  I do thoroughly enjoy the philosophical discussions and I'm certainly no anti-Rand or anti-Objectivist. If I'm anti-anything, it's anti-coercion even as I understand how futile that is. I would probably be an anarchist if I thought there was any possibility of that happening, but I suspect there will always be people who see themselves as "annointed" to manage other people's lives for them. If ever we were successful in doing away with political government those people would just start another one. I'll read what you have suggested and would love to discuss it. Sorry about the misplaced figure of speech. I'm probably disqualified from the contests for age... ;-)
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  • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 6 years, 4 months ago
    Ayn Rand despised the Libertarian Party.
    http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/libert...
    "Libertarianism: the perversion of liberty" by Henry Binswanger here:
    https://estore.aynrand.org/p/509/liberta...

    The reason why Rand was opposed to the LP is that libertarians are SUBJECTIVISTS, not Objectivists. They want the political liberty to whatever pops into their heads (as long as no one else gets hurt). Objectivism teaches the morality of man qua man, i.e., objective values based on reason and reality.
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    • Posted by 6 years, 4 months ago
      Interesting as I was having a discussion with my girlfriend E just last night about Subjectivity and Objectivity. I attempt to use reason for my conclusions and not feelings/thoughts as I feel that's what corrupts others opinions. Ayn Rand said reason was the only means of acquiring knowledge and Thomas Paine said reason was the most formidable weapon against error. I was declaring my frustration when a certain friend of mine declares he doesn't know if he knows anything while having a debate. It drives me crazy. It seems like anytime I apply reason to explain one of my conclusions he attempts to undermine my argument by saying some kind of nonsense ignoring my reasoning. Well, he might not see it as nonsense but I do. I have an extreme right-wing Uncle like that too who will ignore all reasoning and still go on about something that makes absolutely no sense to me. I was saying to E they represent subjectivity to whatever objective point I make. I always have arguments with folks where I end up saying this is based on facts not how I feel. I could not be understanding the philosophy and I was hoping to have someone explain it to me like a teacher might a student, hence the reason I am asking questions on a site where I believe would be the best place to ask them. So I am wanting to educate myself to better prepare for such future occasions. I am at a point where I don't want to waste the time talking to others if they fail to understand the importance of reason and how it pertains to everything.

      It hasn't been easy for me to understand all of Ayn Rand's philosophy even after reading it and agreeing with most of it. Perhaps it is much more simple than I perceive it. Though I do not feel it is or I am just over-analyzing it. I might be looking for something deeper to understand and shall just continue to read as much of her writing as I can until I feel like I have accomplished that craving.
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      • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 6 years, 4 months ago
        Roger Malcolm wrote: "Ayn Rand said reason was the only means of acquiring knowledge." That is not quite what Ayn Rand said. Sensation comes first, then perception. A percept is the identification of a sensation. You form a concept when you abstract your perceptions.

        "Reason is the faculty that identifies and integrates the material provided by man’s senses." (in “The Objectivist Ethics,” in The Virtue of Selfishness) "Reason integrates man’s perceptions by means of forming abstractions or conceptions, thus raising man’s knowledge from the perceptual level, which he shares with animals, to the conceptual level, which he alone can reach. The method which reason employs in this process is logic—and logic is the art of non-contradictory identification." (in “Faith and Force: The Destroyers of the Modern World,” in Philosophy: Who Needs It).

        Ayn Rand goes into far more detail in "Introduction to the Objectivist Epistemology."

        (Also, you may need new friends.)
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        • Posted by 6 years, 4 months ago
          Thank you. In high school I had a friend that gave me a very high compliment when he told me I was the most logical person he had ever met. He also once informed me there were more writers in the world besides just Thomas Paine! Which still makes me smile. He's one of those friends I wish I still had as you are right about I "may need new friends." I've always been the black sheep/scapegoat for my family and have only continued to feel that way with most of society. I'd imagine Ayn Rand might have identified with those sentiments.
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  • Posted by $ WillH 6 years, 4 months ago
    I don't know where she would rank, so I really have no input on it, but when I see these tests on the interwebs I often wonder just who creates them and for what purpose.
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    • Posted by 6 years, 4 months ago
      I don't know the validity of the test but I would say it's a good start for a person that doesn't feel they belong in the left right paradigm. I wasn't happy in high school when I was made to take a test that only had left and right options. I questioned my teacher why I had fallen in the middle and why there wasn't more explanation of the other options. He just said your independent and walked away. I took this today to see the outcome based on any recent developments within myself and found the same chart listing Ayn Rand. I find myself understanding and agreeing with many of her ideas but I still seem to be to the left of her according to this. So I decided to seek more advice.
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  • Posted by $ blarman 6 years, 4 months ago
    I found this particular methodology severely flawed. The questions were poorly formed in many cases and their presidential results were just downright wrong. There is no way both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are at the same place on the map.

    I also agree with several other comments that the axes used aren't representative of a valid comparison. I would posit the following axes:

    Universalism vs Relativism. This one would plot how strongly one believes that laws are absolute and apply to everyone equally or whether laws are conditional to the circumstances or person.

    Autonomy vs Collectivism. This one is all about which is more important: the individual or society as a whole.

    Capitalism vs Socialism. This one is an index regarding market forces vs government intervention and who should run the economy.
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  • Posted by lrbeggs 6 years, 4 months ago
    I remember reading that Rand truly hated the Libertarian party. Maybe it has evolved? I will check it out.
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    • Posted by Rex_Little 6 years, 4 months ago
      Rand did hate the LP, despite the fact that its founders admired her greatly and were heavily influenced by her work. John Hospers, the first LP candidate for President (1972), was a former member of her inner circle who had been banished; whatever her stated reasons, it was widely believed that her attitude toward the LP stemmed from that.

      Rand complained that the LP "stole my ideas without giving me credit." If you can find a copy of Hospers' campaign book, "Libertarianism", you can evaluate that claim by counting the footnotes which cite Rand's books. It's been awhile since I did that count; I don't think it *quite* reached four figures. . .
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