If Every President Took The Political Compass Test

Mr. Beat takes a political compass test for every President in American history.
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Sources/further reading:
Take the test yourself, for reals: https://www.politicalcompass.org/test
A Critique of the Political Compass
https://www.splicetoday.com/politics-and-media/the-political-compass-test-is-garbage

If you regularly watch this channel, it is almost certain that you know about and have probably taken the Political Compass Test.

Despite it definitely having many flaws, it remains one of the most popular websites to quickly see where one’s values and beliefs fit on a political spectrum. The spectrum is based on two axes, a social one, and an economic one. The social one ranges from authoritarianism/fascism to anarchy. The economic one ranges from collectivism/communism to libertarianism/liberalism.

Two of my biggest criticisms of the test is
1) that every issue doesn’t fall neatly onto the two spectrums, and you need a lot of different spectrums. The 8values and 9axes test do a better job simply because they offer more spectrums.
And 2) the questions are just not the best

They are often loaded and you can’t just give a neutral response- it lumps you into a box pretty quickly.

And I get it, you gotta draw the line somewhere, but that’s one reason why every time I take the quiz I get different results.

It’s also a mysterious test- no one knows who exactly runs it, but apparently created by a New Zealand political journalist named Wayne Brittenden. Some even speculate that it’s designed to make everyone think they lean libertarian.

Ok, so yeah, it’s far from a perfect test, but screw it. Let’s have some fun with it anyway. Since I’m the American President History guy on YouTube, let’s pretend that every President in American history was actually able to take the Political Compass Test. Based on my knowledge of all the American Presidents, I just might be able to pull this off.

#politicalcompasstest #ushistory #politicalhistory

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Comment (23)

  1. I mean, all you can really do is go by the policies they supported or opposed. Not the ones that passed or failed, but only those they publicly supported or opposed. We don't…and CAN'T know what their personal ideologies were…at all, really.
    .
    The fact is, once you get into office, your persona ideology goes out the window. Either you have to sacrifice your principles to defeat your political opponents (unless your principles are that you're a tyrannical asshole…and then just be yourself), or you have to compromise your goals and means in order to gain anything at all, making you lesser than what they were.
    .
    Since we can't ever know which of them did what in their own minds, and only whatever others said about them, we're not likely to get any especially accurate results. Probably why so many of them are so weird on the compass compared to what their historical image is.
    .
    The only real way to get something at least usable would be to use only those policies they're explicitly publicly known (recorded on radio/television, personal memoirs, confirmed direct quotations, and official documentation) to have supported or opposed, and then average out all the other questions to neutrality. They'll all be moderates, but they'll still end up in a certain sector. Draw a line from the center and through their compass point, and widen it into a cone whose angle is determined by how much of the test had to be neutralled out. Then do the same from the farthest corner, with another such cone. Where they overlap, draw a second line where the edges of each cone intersect. Where that new line intersects the original line, is the most probably "true" compass point of the respective Leader…though it could potentially (possibly even likely) be anywhere within the area where the two cones overlap.
    .
    Doing it any other way is really just charting the way history views them, and has nothing…at all…to do with their historically possible actual views on anything.
    .
    The compass is somewhat less informative than the 8 Values or 9 Axes. But none of them are composed especially well, either. Taking all three and sorting out how they overlap, is generally the best way to really get an idea of your true political leanings.

  2. I'm not actually surprised about Woodrow Wilson also the left leanings of LBJ,FDR and JFK and I can see why this country is in such a bad shape now days Obama I'm surprised isn't higher on the Authoritarian side but everything else seems about right

  3. This compass has never made any sense. Fascism is authoritarian but communism is collectivist? Collectivism is in it's very nature authoritarian since it is the opposite of individualism. Both fascism and communism is collectivist and authoritarian.
    The truth is also that every president before Wodrow Wilson would be on the far right on this spectrum since almost none of them believed in government programs or even income taxes.

  4. I just don't feel like these results are real. This i side with website told me I'm only an 18% match gk Dwight D Eisenhower but this compas puts me close to 100%

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