I thought I would kick-start a discussion about the two things you are never supposed to talk about with strangers: Politics and Religion! I don't want to start a debate about what political ideology is right or wrong; instead, I'm interested in knowing where the people on Think Atheist fall on a spectrum. Being a Dungeons and Dragons fan, I have always loved the 9-point-alignment scheme as a way to visualize a character's morals and ideology. I think I have found the next best thing...

The Political Compass is a tool that asks you a series of questions regarding your stances on a verity of political topics. Questions cover international trade and economics, public education, and government policy. At the conclusion of the test, it then tallies up your score and displays it on an X-Y graph. Here is mine:

The X-axis of the graph charts your stance on economics. The negative side representing a more left leaning economic mindset (the extreme of which, I think, would be Socialism), and the positive side representing a more free-market ideology (the extreme of which would be pure Capitalism, exempt of any non-market influences).

The Y-axis measures your stance on society, a persons place within it, and the amount of influence a government should have in its citizen's day-to-day affairs. The top half trends towards Authoritarianism (the ultimate extreme of which would the Totalitarianism) whilst the bottom half shows preference towards Libertarianism (the extreme of which would be Anarchy, the complete removal of government).

The test is far from perfect, as it cannot account for all ideologies and viewpoints. Additionally, since the final score is a numerical tally, and each question seems to be weighted equally, a person that endorses extremes on all ideologies could come across as centrist. Regardless, I find the test to be fun, and informative. It's interesting to see a visual representation of your political viewpoint, and to compare it to someone else. 

If you're feeling bored, take the test, and post your results! Do you disagree with your score? Do you think this would be an accurate way to gauge where someone stands? 

Oh, and if anyone is curious about the D&D part, I tend to favor lawful-evil :3

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Hehe yeah I always play "evil" Characters or paths in games.  So much more fun, heres waiting for a spot in the Sith empire in The Old Republic =P

  I came out slightly to the left and below you and Gandhi.  Not bad company.

http://www.politicalcompass.org/printablegraph?ec=-4.25&soc=-0.92

 

My results, I have to be honest I completely disagree, some of the questions I sorta coped out on so I may go back and retake it. Honestly I would have to say I am economically right and socially more in in the center.  And for the most part support the Libertarian party

So if you flipped your monitor upside down, you'd get the results you wanted? :3 j/k

Aye, some of the questions made me had to open a separate window and hit Wikipedia. 'Protectionism' was a term I remember not being familiar with.

LOL! I had to do the same thing...and "protectionism" was a term I didn't know. I think I had to google 2 or 3 things =0)

About where I expected to be

 

Welcome to T/A btw (I'm a newbie myself).

Hi all, I made a blog post on this a while ago so check out my blog on this site to get a few more results. I think most atheists are in the bottom left corner with some (a significant portion) in the bottom right corner. I am yet to see an atheist in the top half of the compass.

Cool, thanks for the input (sorry, guess I should have searched the archives first).

Yeah, so far I've seen trending just like you've described. A strong libertarian streak, and amongst those, a left leaning majority. Which now leads to the more speculative part: why do you suppose that is?

Personally, suspect the libertarian streak is backlash against a government run by a religious majority. (The Y axis part of the chart is the part I'm most interested in).

The problem with this political test is that it's narrow in definition and assumes that everyone that takes the test wants a government. Also question like "should corporation be regulated?"is a problem, because what if I don't believe in corporations, or government for that matter.

I agree that some of the questions could use refining, but with regards to narrow definitions, I respectfully disagree. The benefit of a test like this is that it shows political viewpoints on a gradient scale, rather then flat terms.

Admittedly, it does not take into account more purist ideologies, I think it would be safe to say that someone who found themselves on the bottom of the chart was either a pure libertarian, or anarchist (by which I mean, someone who believes in the absence of government, and nothing more).

The question of wether the test taker believes in government is somewhat irrelevant, though, as government DO exist, regardless of wether you think they do, or wether you think they are effective.

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