Friday, July 8, 2011

The GoToQuiz Political Spectrum Quiz in Full: Part Four

Finally, the fourth and last installment: what I believe, in a very large nutshell. Or: say it loud, I'm lefty and I'm proud.

40. Gay equality is a sign of progress. Agree strongly: Absolutely. As much as anything else out there, really.

41. The state should be able to put a criminal to death if the crime was serious enough. Disagree strongly: Nope. No exceptions. Capital punishment is never acceptable.

42. The military budget should be scaled back. Agree strongly: Both in the out-of-control USA, for whom I imagine this quiz was designed, and up here too, where military spending has been on the rise as other things are being slashed.

43. Economic competition results in inumerable innovations that improve all of our lives. Agree: It also results in many horrid things that hurt us all. But I won't deny that competition has enabled progress in certain ways that might not have occurred without it.

44. It is not our place to condemn other cultures as backwards or barbaric. Agree: Phenomenally loaded question. I am up for criticising other cultures - or perhaps to put it better criticising other societies. I think you can establish benchmarks and then according to them 'rate' the countries of the world. But obviously 'barbaric' is not a useful word. And neither is 'condemn'.

45. When one group is slaughtering another group somewhere in the world, we have a responsibility to intervene. Agree: I do agree. Death matters, whoever it's happening to, wherever in the world. I haven't looked up 'intervene' in the dictionary to see if it refers solely to military measures. But I tend to think that the word can apply to things other than guns a-blazin'.

46. We'd be better off if we could just lock up some of the people expressing radical political views, and keep them away from society. Disagree strongly: This is just patently ridiculous.

47. Unrestrained capitalism cannot last, as wealth and power will concentrate to a small elite. Agree strongly: I think this is currently happening, to a rather shocking degree. The fact that some of the world's richest have a philantropical bent doesn't really change all that much - at the moment, worldwide the gap is increasing at a shocking rate, and sooner or later it has to give.

48. It is a problem when young people display a lack of respect for authority. Disagree: Not really. Perhaps I'm not yet old enough to get upset about that.

49. When corporate interests become too powerful, the state should take action to ensure the public interest is served. Agree strongly: What else is the state for?

50. A person's morality is of the most personal nature; therefore government should have no involvement in moral questions or promote moral behaviors. Neutral: I'm not neutral about this at all, but I'm undecided. I think that a government has a very real role in promoting tolerance, for example. They should be doing whatever they can to change bigots' minds - shy, of course, of active coersion. I suspect that this question is designed to make people think of the opposite - of 'legislating morality' by, for example, criminalising homosexuality. While that's reprehensible, I don't think I can quite make the blanket statement that the questions wants me to, though.

51. The state should not set a minimum wage. Disagree strongly: I'm shocked that this actually exists as a cause for advocacy. Or rather I'm not actually as shocked by it as I wish I were, but there's really no argument for repealing minimum wage legislation beyond 'we can work them as slaves and no one can stop us!' Not to sound even more old-school lefty than I genuinely am, but I have a sad and uncomfortable feeling that workers' rights are being seriously trampled on, to a degree unseen for a century perhaps, at the present moment, and no one really seems to give a damn about it. It really saddens me.

52. A nation's retirement safety net cannot be trusted to the fluctuations of the stock market. Agree: Well, it's tough to argue with this, one would think. 'Sorry grandpa, but it's Ramen noodles for you this month; RIM underperformed.' But the world never fails to surprise me.

53. Offensive or blasphemous art should be suppressed.: Disagree strongly: Only if 'suppressed' means 'encouraged'.

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