Jun 222017



In traditional scales and diagrams illustrating the political spectrum, most people have been taught that the political gradients from left to right look something like the following illustration:

LEFT —————————————————————- RIGHT
Radical —- Liberal —- Centrist —- Conservative —- Reactionary
Communism ——————————————————— Fascism

Both in theory and in practice, these ideological representations (and others like them) are wrong. They do not reflect political reality, and demonstrably so. Yet, they continue to be taught in our schools and used as a standard method of contrasting the political spectrum.

This has caused untold confusion in the minds of millions, and perhaps has played a greater role than most would expect in the accelerating and tragic drift of nations to the left – towards communism and fascism.

The traditional political spectrum as illustrated above is in fact a spectrum of the political LEFT only. Change the word “RIGHT” on the above diagram to “LEFT,” and only then will that diagram make sense.

Glaringly absent from traditional political diagrams like the one above are, of course, freedom and capitalism. Since, by definition, “left” and “right” are intended to be polar opposites, a more accurate, simple, and useful representation of the political polarities would be something like this:

LEFT ——————————————————————- RIGHT
Tyranny ————————————————————– Freedom

In this representation, everything in the first diagram above would sit under the LEFT / Tyranny side of the scale – where it properly belongs.

What is being popularly described as the “right” today is really an oxymoronic concept: it is the “right-wing” of the LEFT (i.e., fascism, political Conservatism).

Because the right represents freedom (a natural condition), in comparison to the unlimited number of freedom-restricting ideologies, the political right is almost not “political” at all. In fact, the political right would be best described generically, not in the muddled leftist terms of political confusion and misdirection.

For example, a simple dictionary definition:

right: (Funk & Wagnalls):

1. Done in accordance with or conformable to moral law or to some standard of rightness; equitable, just, righteous;
2. Conformable to truth or fact;
3. Conformable to a standard of propriety or to the conditions of the case; proper; fit; suitable;
4. Holding one direction, as a line; straight; direct;
5. Properly placed, disposed, or adjusted; well regulated; orderly;
6. Sound in mind or body; healthy; well.

As there is no corresponding generic definition of “left” in standard dictionaries, a simple way to objectively describe the political left would be to use the exact opposite of the six “right” principles just described.

With these two definitions and a proper visual representation of left and right as our guide and compass, we can hopefully increase the odds that our future political choices might be Just Right.

  One Response to “510 – The broken political compass”

  1. You are correct that the left/right paradigm is basically useless. I don’t know how the term originated but I would assume it was someone who considered himself to be right. But your definitions seem to be troubling also. Just to point out the most glaringly obvious and the most important; global warming denialism is an article of blind faith among the right, but they are wrong. Maybe there should be a right/wrong spectrum. People who believe global warming is a Chinese hoax/not happening/Happening but it’s not my fault/caused by sunspots/caused by fluctuations in the universe/whatever crackpot theory you can think of to deny reality are on the wrong side. People who face reality are on the right

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