Sep 122023

Yes, that’s me. At least according to The Political Compass.

It does not surprise me much, mind you. While I am not a wild-eyed, “woke”, progressive “social justice warrior” (in fact, I am increasingly a deeply fed up with the “woke” lot), many of my views tend to align broadly with the traditional left. I also reject authoritarianism in all forms, and while I don’t endorse unconstrained freedom (e.g., in the economy), I largely view constraints as a necessary evil, not as a universal solution.

And, of course, I absolutely, strongly, vehemently reject any and all forms of personality cults.

So here, then, is my question: Given the direction our societies are heading, will there be room for left-wing libertarians like me in the future? Authoritarianism seems to be so much in vogue these days, be it the culture of intolerance in the name of tolerance as practiced by the woke left, or the more traditional authoritarianism of the nationalist right. The common theme that unites them is their rejection of liberal democracy’s core systems of institutions.

To offer an idea of what the four quadrants represent: Left-wing authoritarians (red, upper left) include Stalin and Mao. Joe Biden and Donald Trump both qualify as right-wing authoritarians (blue, upper right) according to the Compass, though I am sure not nearly as extreme as Pinochet or Mussolini, also in the same quadrant. Hegel or Ayn Rand along with von Mises are right-wing libertarians (purple, lower right). The green quadrant (lower left), where I found myself, apparently includes Gandhi, Mandela and Noam Chomsky. Urgh. I so disagree with Chomsky on many things. Oh well, these are big quadrants.

 Posted by at 11:11 pm