I just took a political typology test designed by the Pew Research Center. I could’ve answered some of the questions quite differently depending on interpretation which would’ve given me different results.
In response to question 25, I agreed (but not strongly) that “I worry the government is getting too involved in the issue of morality”. My actual worry is that the debate about morality is defined and controlled by a narrow special interest group (the moral minority). To me, issues of morality include issues of war, civil rights, poverty, health care, workers unions, regulatory agencies, and environmentalism. Actually, I consider all of politics a moral issue and so if anything I worry that the government has become disconnected from any authentic moral sense. In an idealistic world where the very concept of ‘morality’ wasn’t warped to the extreme right, I’d have instead agreed strongly with “The government should do more to protect morality in society”.
My test answers gave me the result of Liberal, but the test was rather general. My liberal sensibilities were emphasized in my answers because I just spent the last day reading about conservative/corporate media bias. I’m rather mixed up in my beliefs. I’m libertarian in mistrusting the government, but I’m liberal in that I trust the government more than I trust big business. I believe the government has potential for good if big business is kept out of it. And I believe capitalism has potential for good if the government can fairly regulate. But I’m too cynical to actually believe much good will come of any of it. So, I’m a rather disgruntled liberal who feels equally (or maybe more) disgruntled about the even more disgruntled far right (which apparently would be labelled as Disaffected).
The Disaffecteds are so cynical that they end up voting against their own self-interests. They’re poor and they love to complain about poverty (especially of the even more poverty-stricken minorities and immigrants), but they mistrust everyone who isn’t like them including the government and it’s programs to help the poor. So, they wallow in their poverty and whine about the failure of the government. They’re mostly uneducated, rural Republicans who have no interest in politics beyond how they perceive it might influence their employment. They’re against immigrants and environmentlaism simply because they believe they will take away their jobs.
Compared to the Disaffecteds, I’m a rather optimistic Liberal. I’m proud to be a Liberal. According to the results, Liberals are the most highly educated of any political type. Also: “Liberals are second only to Enterprisers in following news about government and public affairs most of the time (60%). Liberals’ use of the internet to get news is the highest among all groups (37%).” Since I live in a town that is the most highly educated per capita in the US, it’s highly likely that I’m surrounded by Liberals. If we could only make everyone one in America highly educated, then this would be a truly liberal country.
PAST TYPOLOGY COUNTERPART: Liberal Democrats/Seculars/60’s Democrats
17% OF GENERAL POPULATION
19% OF REGISTERED VOTERS
PARTY ID: 59% Democrat; 40% Independent/No Preference, 1% Republican (92% Dem/Lean Dem)
BASIC DESCRIPTION: This group has nearly doubled in proportion since 1999. Liberal Democrats now comprise the largest share of Democrats. They are the most opposed to an assertive foreign policy, the most secular, and take the most liberal views on social issues such as homosexuality, abortion, and censorship. They differ from other Democratic groups in that they are strongly pro-environment and pro-immigration.
DEFINING VALUES: Strongest preference for diplomacy over use of military force. Pro-choice, supportive of gay marriage and strongly favor environmental protection. Low participation in religious activities. Most sympathetic of any group to immigrants as well as labor unions, and most opposed to the anti-terrorism Patriot Act.
|Relying too much on military force to defeat terrorism creates hatred that leads to more terrorism||51%||90%|
|I worry the government is getting too involved in the issue of morality||51%||88%|
|Stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost||60%||89%|
|Poor people have hard lives because government benefits don’t go far enough to help them live decently||52%||80%|
WHO THEY ARE: Most (62%) identify themselves as liberal. Predominantly white (83%), most highly educated group (49% have a college degree or more), and youngest group after Bystanders. Least religious group in typology: 43% report they seldom or never attend religious services; nearly a quarter (22%) are seculars. More than one-third never married (36%). Largest group residing in urban areas (42%) and in the western half the country (34%). Wealthiest Democratic group (41% earn at least $75,000).
LIFESTYLE NOTES: Largest group to have been born (or whose parents were born) outside of the U.S. or Canada (20%). Least likely to have a gun in the home (23%) or attend bible study or prayer group meetings (13%).
2004 ELECTION: Bush 2%, Kerry 81%
MEDIA USE: Liberals are second only to Enterprisers in following news about government and public affairs most of the time (60%). Liberals’ use of the internet to get news is the highest among all groups (37%).
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