WebWork Exercise Essay
Each question asked in the survey tested my political and economic leanings in ways that made me reflect on my personal beliefs. The results showed that I was a leftist libertarian, an ideology shared by the likes of the Dalai Lama and Mahatma Gandhi. I must say that I was not at all surprised. While there were items that took me several minutes to answer properly, overall the graph accurately depicted what I knew to be true. My political compass was on the hard left viz. horizontally -5. 12 on the Economic Left/Right scale, and on the bottom libertarian scale scoring -5.
13 vertically. What the survey further reveals about my beliefs was that not every question where I answered in a way that would belie my results had an impact in my final score. In other words, there were items where my answers were steep departures from being a leftist libertarian but the results were not affected. I do not claim expertise on the statistical methods used in the website and I only took the survey only once, but I believe that the reason why my graph is what it is, is because of a number of crucial questions which
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Most of my answers are without a doubt the products of my personal experiences and own biases developed through time. The agents which I think contributed to my leanings would probably be the educational institutions I was part of, my upbringing—deliberate or unintentional by my family and friends, and my general impressions nurtured by the media and the Internet. However, out of all these major contributors to my beliefs, I can say that the greatest factor would be my exposure to different political theories in school.
It is my education, including independent and leisure reading and research of books, essays and journal articles, that I was able to form a political paradigm and economic worldview. I have decided, by personal tastes and by reason, the better opinion about whether or not to allow full State control over certain aspects of individual life, or whether or not the free market should be tempered by regulations and State intrusions and so on. As such, when I picked the topic on the issue on Affirmative Action it did not take me long to give my thumbs down to the idea.
I believe, and this is supported by my political compass results, that classification according to race or gender in order to give more to those perceived to have less only reinforces the existing prejudices and misconceptions about race, culture and gender. Affirmative Action might be helpful and in fact is necessary at a time when there were still strong and obvious discrimination against a certain group of minority. However, changes in the modern times make the policy a little out of place or at the most a harmful perpetuation of old political and cultural habits to the disadvantage of the minority.
My leftist and libertarian bias, so to speak, convinces me that each individual must be treated on equal terms. Should there be classifications to what the individual is and can do, then the classification must be based on valid qualifications such as academic performance and aptitude. There should be little to no State intrusions in the process of educating the population because that would be reminiscent of the fascist-totalitarian regime, and would stunt the creative and cultural growth of individuals and society in the end.
In sum, I found the exercise of answering the survey and determining my biases through statistical analysis to be an enriching and a confirmatory learning experience. First, because I only had a vague idea where I really stand before I started the test. Second, inasmuch as the test results merely confirmed what I knew all long albeit it gave me a clearer picture of how I think and the kind of (famous) people I am associated with. I am pleased with the results to a certain extent because the results approximate my political beliefs.
In the end I discovered my politics and was able to apply and confirm the results by looking into the issue of Affirmative Action.
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