January 16th, 2006

Browncoat party

Is Kinky Good News for Libertarians?

Kinky Friedman is bringing more choice than usual to the Texas Governor race. But as I read his position statements that's not making me as happy as I hoped it would.

Theoretically it should be great. I don't identify with either major party and neither does he, so we wind up in the middle:

But just because we disagree with the other guys doesn't mean we agree. The Libertarian Party pushes a quiz to bring out those differences and I don't think I'd wind up close to Kinky on it.

(Note: Kinky's position on this and the following is my own best guess at where he stands. I don't think he's taken the test.)

That makes Kinky look like a pretty bad choice for me--a relatively centrist Rep or Dem would agree with me on more. But that's not the only way to display different views. Jerry Pournelle graphs them by attitude toward the state and social engineering.

By those standards Kinky's probably as good a match as any of the major party candidates and possibly better.

There's a bunch of other two-axis graphs, from the terrible PoliticalCompass.org one to the useful politics test at OKCupid. But all of them are compressing a lot of different views into a narrow area. Writer 3ebnut came up with a three-dimensional way of describing political views.

The axis separate groups by their views on control of personal life, government financial intervention, and control of business. Kinky seems to fall in the "New Labour" corner, which doesn't have an exact match in American politics yet. That makes him a better fit for me than a regular liberal and could beat out a conservative, even if he doesn't make me perfectly happy.

Trying to have a real graph of our political groups is still hard. I can look at the 3-D graph and see several groups that are split over eminent domain authority and the war in Iraq. So a perfect graph would probably be too hard to use. But anything else has to be better than the silly "left-right" model.

(Our voting system does force the politicians into the left-right model)
  • Current Mood
    thoughtful thoughtful