Better And Better

If you don't draw yours, I won't draw mine.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Political Distribution.

There are shades of gray.


It would seem that people are so busy identifying the difference between black and white, that they forget that the vast majority of the world falls somewhere in between.


Most people tend to think of their political affiliations as falling along a single line, like this:






But it's not really that simple. It's at the very least two-dimensional, like this:

The above graphic is one that I sketched from memory, from a lecture by Dr. Robert Taylor in a graduate class on terrorism. This was early on in the class, and we were discussing what drives people that were allegedly on opposite ends of the political spectrum to take up very, very similar positions and tactics.

It's funny how worked up people get in their identity with regard to which side of the centerline that they fall.

I worry about the polarization that I see in our nation.

I worry about the civil Cold War that looms.

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19 Comments:

At Friday, September 11, 2009 3:39:00 PM, Blogger Rev. Paul said...

I hadn't seen the circular plot before. That makes sense.

Thanks.

 
At Friday, September 11, 2009 4:24:00 PM, Blogger Assrot said...

"I worry about the polarization that I see in our nation.

I worry about the civil Cold War that looms."


So do I Matt. I really believe there will be another civil war in this country. I shudder at the thought.

I'll probably be dead and gone when it happens but I do worry terribly about my 3 kids, 6 grandkids and all the other young folk that I call family or friend.

Joe

 
At Friday, September 11, 2009 5:48:00 PM, Blogger Sevesteen said...

I have seen a similar graph with the up/down labeled authoritarian vs libertarian. If you are far on the libertarian side, the liberal/conservative direction doesn't matter much, because even if you disagree, you will not think it is up to the government to fix.

 
At Friday, September 11, 2009 7:59:00 PM, Blogger Old NFO said...

Kinda looks like the OODA loop version... Good presentation!

 
At Friday, September 11, 2009 9:58:00 PM, Blogger Mikael said...

I've taken tests on the one sevesteen talks about, economic left/right, and authoritarian/libertarian up/down.

I scored waaaaaaaay left and quite a bit on the libertarian side(something like -9, -6 coordinates), closest example on it to my position was gandhi. ;)

... and I'm still pro-gun, and believe in capital punishment(and 100% confirmed rapists/pedofiles should never get out without castration, penectomy and/or lobotomy).

 
At Friday, September 11, 2009 10:01:00 PM, Blogger Mikael said...

Ah, here it is:
http://www.politicalcompass.org/

 
At Saturday, September 12, 2009 2:20:00 AM, Blogger Rabbit said...

I doubt it'll be so 'cold' in more than a couple of bright blue areas.

By the same token, I just finished reading 'The Last Centurion', so make of that opinion what you will.

Regards,
Rabbit.

 
At Saturday, September 12, 2009 9:08:00 AM, Blogger Well Seasoned Fool said...

There was a cartoon in the 60's I still remember. The character was saying, "The more my thinking verve's to the extreme right, the more I find in common with the extreme left. I think I am becoming a middle of the road extremist."

We need more middle of the road extremists if we are to avoid a civil war.

 
At Saturday, September 12, 2009 7:16:00 PM, Anonymous TBeck said...

Heinlein's FRIDAY looks more and more prescient every day. Can we avoid balkanization? Do we want to?

Can I borrow this (with attribution) for a Facebook post? I really like the diagram.

 
At Saturday, September 12, 2009 8:21:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

First, the usual "left/right" presentation -- with socialism on the left and fascism on the right is FALSE.

The true "left/right" paradigm is much more simple.

Statism on the left, freedom on the right.

Or, put another way, more government the further you go LEFT of center, and less the further RIGHT you go.

There are really only 2 options in Government - Oligarchy and a proper Republic.

Anarchy WILL lead to Oligarchy, as will Socialism, Democracy, and every other idea EXCEPT a well-ordered republic.

Unfortunately, we're just about there, and getting it back is going to take a war that isn't likely to be very cold.

While I *HOPE* it can be done without violence, I no longer REALLY believe that is possible.

Further, if there MUST be a war, I would rather it be soon so that *I* can deal with the ugliness and my kids and grandkids can live in peace.

As a better man than I recently said "I won't start it, but when it comes I will join it."

God help us...

DD

 
At Saturday, September 12, 2009 11:28:00 PM, Blogger Gay_Cynic said...

I devoutly hope it stays a cold civil war.

Looking at history, the last time we had one heat up, it didn't seem fun for anyone...

 
At Sunday, September 13, 2009 12:13:00 AM, Blogger Mikael said...

I disagree quite strongly with Anonymous.

Extreme right isn't freedom, it's just as imposing as extreme left. If you go far enough right you have royalty and slavery. (Remember, right being conservative), as well as religious tyrany(Saudi arabia is extreme right). Of course extreme left isn't any better. Far right wants a ruling class, and an underprivileged class for cheap labor with no safety nets or employment rights.

If you're just talking economically, it's true, left is control, right is free, but remember that in a totally free market, the strong will crush the weak and there will be monopolies, and very little choice for the people.

Also, hate to break it to you but republics fall under oligarchy too, and the american one is a particular oligarchy type: plutocracy, rule by the wealthy(noone else can afford the campaigns to get elected).

 
At Sunday, September 13, 2009 4:51:00 PM, Blogger Crucis said...

The runup to the first Civil War began with Jackson. The federal bank, land grabs, and internal corruption. Figure about 35 years prior to the point the shooting started.

Now, look at some similar occurrences in our times. The late '60s, Chicago in 1968, Nixon's wage and price controls of the early 70's. The waste and corruption of Johnson's "Great Society." Then we have Jimmy Carter's incredible incompetence.

Then, there was a short interregnum of the Reagan Era. If he hadn't appeared, the 35 year span from start to shooting would have ended in 2003. If you add the eight years of Reagan to that original span of the runup for The first civil war, then by that model, the next civil war will start in 2011.

Not so very far off at all. Imagine, the libs lose big in 2010, enough to split one house. We have one dem side of congress and a 'pub in control of the other. Dem's and libs blaming all on the other party. Next we have the runup to the 2012 election with the population getting more and more polarized on the two sides.

It doesn't take much of an active imagination to see what could follow.

 
At Monday, September 14, 2009 5:01:00 AM, Blogger Mikael said...

I think the major problem is you're a freedom loving people, and your choices are authorative left/center(truly, internationally speaking, the dems are more centrist than left), and authorative right.

And the biggest alternative party, the libertarians, your only real freedom choice, is generally derided.

I think it would do you a world of good if the big parties fractured, and more small parties were given a chance, giving you more choice.

And term limits in congress and senate as well as the white house... incumbency breeds corruption.

WV: apologis

 
At Tuesday, September 15, 2009 9:57:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matt - I've been a registered republican since I turned 18. Now, I'm not anymore. I think I'm right in the middle now. I just want the "right" to get over the election. I want health care reform, with a public option. I want people to show some respect for the person who is now our duly elected President.

I have family members who work full time jobs but are unable to afford health care, and it is not offered by the company they work for. My daughter has a congenital heart defect, which means soon she will have to find health coverage with a preexisting condition. It is a nightmare to watch people you love suffer because they don't have something as basic as health care. It's really easy for people like Mr. Wilson to thump his chest, he has health care, government protected health care. Janet in Texas

 
At Tuesday, September 15, 2009 12:02:00 PM, Blogger Crucis said...

You can always tell when a democrat makes a post. They always claim to have been a republican since birth, then they proceed to spill the democrat party line.

Janet in Texas, I don't believe your bono-fides.

 
At Friday, September 18, 2009 5:34:00 PM, Blogger Larry said...

ON one side of the spectrum you have authoritarianism.

On the other you have anarchy.

The extremes are 1) government controls everything and 2) no government anywhere.

Mikael is wrong. Extreme right is no government anywhere, royalty and slavery are on the left (towards authoritarianism, after all what is a king but an absolute ruler?)

Either extreme is equally obnoxious.

 
At Tuesday, September 22, 2009 2:39:00 AM, Blogger Mikael said...

Traditionally, the Left includes: social liberals, social democrats, socialists, communists and anarchists while the Right includes: conservatives, fascists, reactionaries, monarchists and nationalists.

The terms Left and Right have been used to refer to political affiliation since the early part of the French Revolutionary era. They originally referred to the seating arrangements in the various legislative bodies of France, specifically in the French Legislative Assembly of 1791, when the king was still the formal head of state, and the moderate royalist Feuillants sat on the right side of the chamber, while the radical Montagnards sat on the left.

Originally, the defining point on the ideological spectrum were the attitudes towards the ancien régime ("old order"). "The Right" thus implied support for aristocratic, royal and clerical interests, while "The Left" implied support for republicanism, secularism and civil liberties.

 
At Friday, September 07, 2012 12:16:00 PM, Blogger Kristopher said...

The extreme left has no fucking clue what folks like me are capable of if they chuck out the rule of law.

The rule of law protects them from me. They should think long and hard about chucking it out and running up the flag of revolution.

There are two groups at the end of those bars, not one.

 

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