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Political Coordinates Test

This free political observance test will allow you to obtain your scores on the two major political scales found in Western democracies. Though there are several other "political coordinates" and "political observance" tests in existence, these tests have commonly been criticized for seeking to trick the respondent into answering in a certain way, for example by applying spin to the questions or framing them in such a way as to provoke emotional reactions in the respondent. By contrast, this test attempts to simply confront you with the questions without any coating or spin.

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Explanation of Quadrants

Left-liberalism (Social Liberalism): Individuals in this quadrant seek to uphold individual liberty while taxing the market to provide social benefits for those in need. They tend to see themselves as seeking balance between individual liberty and social justice, and to be in favor of multiculturalism, secular government, and international cooperation. While they are typically skeptical of state involvement in social affairs, they nevertheless see a legitimate role for the state in combating discrimination and ensuring equal treatment.

Right-communitarianism (Conservatism): Individuals in this quadrant seek to retain the traditional social and economic order and to uphold the sovereignty of the state. They tend to see themselves as the defenders of what their forebears would have wanted, favoring strict immigration laws, traditional values, and a strong military. While they typically see a role for the state in matters of national security and culture, they tend to be more skeptical of state involvement in the economy.

Left-communitarianism (Social Democracy): Individuals in this quadrant seek to promote communal solutions to both social and economic problems. They tend to see themselves as supporting a mode of government that curbs the excesses of capitalism and diminishes inequality by virtue of a mixed economy and a universal welfare state. They seek to encourage collective solutions, economic redistribution and shared values throughout society by means of participatory democracy and the state.

Right-liberalism (Libertarianism): Individuals in this quadrant seek to uphold liberty as the primary political good in all respects. They tend to see themselves as staunch supporters of both personal and economic freedom and are deeply skeptical of collective plans and goals, stressing instead the principle of voluntary association and the individual’s capacity to make his own judgments. They typically see less of a role for the state than individuals in the other three quadrants, believing instead in the spontaneous social order of the market.

Theory and Approach

The Horizontal Axis: Left-Right

In our test, the Left-Right Axis is used as a measure of the respondent's economic views, with the Left favoring state intervention and economic regulation while the Right favors economic freedom and laissez-faire. This means that the Left tends to support state efforts to restrain what they see as the unfair or immoral aspects of the free market while the Right tends to think that transactions between private parties should in principle be free from government interference.

However, a scale covering the respondent's stance on economic issues is not sufficient to explain the considerable variation that is seen within the two groups. Hence we introduce a second axis.

The Vertical Axis: Communitarian-Liberal

All liberals start from the belief that upholding individual liberties is more important than catering to the needs of society. Left Liberals tend to argue that the individual cannot make use of his or her formal liberties without some measure of education and material comfort. In their view, this necessitates redistribution from rich to poor. By contrast, Right Liberals tend to argue that taxing an individual against his will in order to provide welfare benefits to others constitutes an act of coercion and thus a breach of individual liberty. They may support charity and aid for the poor, but they prefer it to be voluntary.

All communitarians start from the belief that the well-being of the community should come before the idiosyncratic desires of specific individuals. Right Communitarians tend to take what might be called a paternal view of politics, favoring a hierarchical society and taking a stern view of threats where criminals belong in prison and foreign powers are deterred by a strong defense. For their part, while the ideologues among the Left tend to hold liberal values, research has tended to point to a sizable segment of voters who combine a left-leaning view of economics with support for the more traditional values of their community and a skeptical view of immigration (Mudde 2013).

Weaknesses and Limitations

Our test is designed to cover the mainstream of political opinions as found within contemporary Western democracies. This means that our test has trouble accommodating extreme or niche opinions like anarcho-syndicalism, anarcho-capitalism, orthodox socialism, and fascism. While there are political coordinates tests in existence that purport to cover this whole range of opinions within the relatively simple quadrants set up by our scheme, the practical consequences (such as plotting centrist democratic leaders a stone's throw from Hitler and Kim Jong Un) seem to confuse more than inform.

Another issue is that, while both of the axes are equally important in theory, the realities of parliamentary politics tend to show that in practice alliances are rarely formed across the Left-Right divide. Although Liberals and Communitarians should in principle be able to form alliances against their counterparts, this almost never happens in actual politics. Hence, while the Left-Right axis has often been said to be antiquated, it nevertheless remains the single most important scale in American and European politics.

References

Mudde, C.: 'Three decades of populist radical right parties in Western Europe: So what?' European Journal of Political Research Volume 52, Issue 1, January 2013

CelebrityTypes Political Coordinates Test is the property of CelebrityTypes International. The Political Compass Test is the registered trademark of Pace News Limited. The Vote Compass is the registered trademark of Vox Pop Labs Inc. Neither Pace News Limited nor Vox Pop Labs Inc. have any affiliation with this site.

This test has been made with the aid of professional political analysts and respondents from all sides of the political spectrum. Even so, please keep in mind that tests are merely indicators - a first peek at the system to get you started.

Political Coordinates Tests, whether they are professional or "official" tests used in academic research, or free online tests like this one, are indicators to help give you a cue as to your political standpoint. No test ever devised can designate your political allegiances with complete accuracy or reliability and no Political Coordinates Test can replace familiarizing yourself with the politics of your country in depth.

The authors of this free online political coordinates test are certified in the use of multiple different personality tests and have worked professionally with psychology, political psychology, and personality testing. Prior to using our free online test, please note that the results are provided "as-is", for free, and should not be construed as providing professional or certified advice of any kind. For more on our online political coordinates test, please consult our Terms of Service.

Why Use This Test?

1. Free. This free online political coordinates test is delivered to you free of charge and will allow you to obtain your coordinates on two major political dimensions, relegating you to one of the four major quadrants that are commonly seen in Western democracies.

2. Agenda-free. While there are other political coordinates tests out there, many of them attempt to spin the questions so as to have the respondent come out in agreement with their own political view. This test attempts to be agenda-free by putting the questions to you without bias or spin.

3. Contemporary. Several of the most popular political coordinates tests out there were made more than 10 years ago and/or made in conjunction with specific elections. In either case, the questions tend to revolve around issues that were relevant at those specific times and not in the contemporary political landscape. This test aims for a set of questions that is more up-to-date.

4. Made with the aid of professionals. The present test has been made with the input of researchers who work professionally with political science and political analysis.

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