Political Spectrum
As Wikipedia defines it, "a political spectrum is a way of modeling different political positions by placing them upon one or more geometric axes symbolizing independent political dimensions". The range of political positions in this country are universally understood to be encompassed by a spectrum from left of center to right of center. In the USA we typically consider the spectrum running left to right with Socialists, Democrats, Libertarians Republicans, and Conservatives. This spectrum is displayed visually in several formats, a circle, a half moon, four quadrants, compass chart, and two others we will explain below, a square box, and a straight line, etc. The most usual and easiest to handle is the straight line. (This particular reference is just a sample. The plotting of particular people and beliefs is inaccurate.) Center being the true north of rational views on any issue. Left of center representing the more liberal or free thinking, unrestrained viewpoints. The right of center representing more conservative, traditional and responsible viewpoints. The square box is based on the Nolan Chart created by libertarian David Nolan. There are variants of this model such as the Pournelle chart developed by Jerry Pournelle in 1963, a two dimensional box chart but with different axis. Another variant is the "world's smallest political quiz" which rotates the Nolan chart to a diamond shape. The ADVOCATES for self government administers this quiz to help anyone quickly determine where they reside on the political spectrum. Take the "world's smallest political quiz" to find out where your views reside on the spectrum. Another quiz is available from Dr. Tim Groseclose, a 40-question quiz that allows you to calculate your "Political Quotient". At the end of the quiz, Dr. Groseclose also lists politicians who have PQs similar to yours. Or, take the "TIME Magazine quiz" to predict your political perspective. In the 3 columns below you will find updated stories on the political views (spectrum) of candidates and issues as they apply to us today. How do your beliefs align with the poliical debates of today? Take the quiz.

Socialists of the World, Unite

1/29/19
from The Wall Street Journal,
1/28/19:

Sanders and AOC show their support for Venezuela’s dictator.

Socialism is again going mainstream in the U.S., or at least in the Democratic Party, and apparently the 21st-century version includes the international socialist solidarity that marked the 20th. As Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro hunts for allies amid a revolt of his desperate people, he is finding rare support among America’s Democratic socialists. Bernie Sanders, the once and future U.S. presidential candidate, issued this balm for the comrades in Caracas late last week: “The United States should support the rule of law, fair elections and self-determination for the Venezuelan people. We must condemn the use of violence against unarmed protesters and the suppression of dissent. However, we must learn the lessons of the past and not be in the business of regime change or supporting coups—as we have in Chile, Guatemala, Brazil, and the Dominican Republic. The United States has a long history of inappropriately intervening in Latin American countries; we must not go down that road again.”

Mr. Maduro stole the last election and his National Guard are killing protesters, but Mr. Sanders is most worried about U.S. support for “regime change.” Regime change is exactly what the people of Venezuela want. Bernie is siding with the dictator, who survives in power only because of the military and Cuban intelligence. Then there’s the newest socialist star, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC for short), who retweeted this response from left-wing California Democrat Ro Khanna to Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin’s support for the Venezuelan uprising: “With respect Senator Durbin, the US should not anoint the leader of the opposition in Venezuela during an internal, polarized conflict. Let us support Uruguay, Mexico, & the Vatican’s efforts for a negotiated settlement & end sanctions that are making the hyperinflation worse.”

Sorry, Mr. Khanna and AOC, the U.S. didn’t “anoint” anyone. The elected Venezuelan National Assembly named Juan Guaidó its interim president, as it is allowed to do under the Venezuelan constitution. The U.S. merely recognized him as the legitimate president of the country.

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