In the meantime, I direct my readership to this post by Noah Millman (H/T League of Ordinary Gentlemen). It has been noted before that the smartest people don’t seem to fit nicely into boxes labeled “left” or “right.” This says more about our our method of classification, I think, than it does about these people themselves. It seems clear to me that a new taxonomy is needed to replace our old system.
- Liberal vs. Conservative – “Put simply: a liberal outlook trusts individuals and questions authority; a conservative outlook distrusts individuals and defers to authority.”
- Left vs. Right – “Put simply: a right-wing perspective is animated by an affinity for the winners and their interests, while a left-wing perspective is animated by an affinity for the losers and their interests.”
- Progressive vs. Reactionary – “The progressive-reactionary axis revolves around attitudes toward time and history. The progressive is future-oriented. Things will – or could – be better in the future than they are now. But more than this, history has a direction that can be discerned, and that one must be cognizant of in constructing one’s politics….The reactionary, by contrast, is past-oriented. Things will – likely – be worse in the future than they are now, just as they were better in the past.”