So Pew Me

Some readers follow my lead in taking the political typology quiz from the Pew Research Center:

That Pew test is pretty funny; apparently thinking that government isn’t evil, that environmental protection is important, that the government should help the poor, whether pewit is possible to be moral without God, that “homosexuality” (quite a different thing even from marriage equality!) is “acceptable,” and that immigrants “help American society” all make one a member of the “New Left.” I suspect that according to this test, Plato and Aristotle would be members of the “New Left” too!

I answered truthfully in all cases, refusing to “psychoanalyze” the quiz so as to make it make me show up as a conservative. I suspect that if the quiz had bothered to ask my opinions about what we should actually do about many of these problems, or about my opinions about abortion, I would no longer be a “New Leftie.” Yes, being anything but a frothing, racist, jingoistic, consumerist Rick Perry-style conservative stereotype apparently disqualifies one from being called a conservative.

One thing it has, however, made clear to me, is the enduringly exceptional character of the abortion question. I would be a pretty reliable liberal voter, if not for my profound moral reservations of the current liberal status quo on the abortion question. Oh, and I’m a “millennial.”

Another reader:

Whenever I take these kinds of quizzes I’m always thinking “yes, but …” – though the Political Typology Quiz you took has some questions that have me thinking WTF? Take this one for example:

Business corporations make too much profit or Most corporations make a fair and reasonable amount of profit

I’m like, my issue isn’t how much profit a company makes, I want them to make a lot of profit, my issue is how that profit is divided up between the employees, shareholders and the executives that manage the company.  So how the heck do I answer that question?

There were other questions I had issues with as well.  My issue isn’t that we shouldn’t be active in world affairs; it’s how we are active in world affairs and having an understanding of our limits in that regard.  On immigration, I think it makes us stronger, but I’d like to cut down on the uneducated low-skill immigrants and concentrate on ramping up our ability to brain-drain the rest of the world.

I scored a solid liberal, which isn’t surprising, though I think if the test was more nuanced I’d drift more towards the center.  They also didn’t ask about guns.  I’m sure that would have dragged me to the right.

Another:

I took it. Told me I was a “solid liberal” who probably voted mostly Democrat and loved Obama. Neither of which is true.

I never voted strictly Dem when I was living in the US. I was a reluctant Obama voter in 2008 and grew to loathe him and most of his policies, so much that I didn’t vote in 2012. His re-election (not that Americans had a choice really) was the push that decided me on giving up my US citizenship when I take Canadian citizenship (hopefully before the summer is over). Even here, where I am a card-carrying Liberal, I don’t support them provincially, and I’m a bit chagrined to say I even lean a bit Wildrose at times and occasionally think Mulcair would make a good PM.

It was a stupid quiz. Over half the questions should have had a “neither” choice or more accurately “it’s not that simple – unless you don’t use your brain for thinking much” option. But it was typical American, where everything is black/white.

Bah humbug.