Political Ideologies

If you know anything about politics then you have probably heard of the political spectrum, and if you haven’t heard of it then you should probably read this post because it is very important. Politics can be a very tricky topic. Partly because they are extremely confusing, and partly because many people have different political views. It’s your worldview that puts you on the political spectrum. The political spectrum is commonly considered to be a straight line but many people feel it is much more complicated than that and it is actually more of a grid. Here are two examples of political spectrums.

The political spectrum shows you which ideology you most closely relate two. The common ideologies are conservatism, liberalism, communism, socialism, and fascism. The ideology you are is determined by your place on the horizontal line. The vertical line determines whether you are more authoritarian or libertarian. In case you have no idea what any of these words mean I have written a small description of a few ideologies below.

Conservatism is about tradition. Conservatives believe that hierarchy and authority are important and come natural to human kind. They also believe that humans cannot exist outside of society and need a community. They believe that property should be owned and is very important.
Liberalism is a forward thinking ideology. They believe in individual freedom and that everyone is unique but still equal. They also believe in a faith in reason and the ability to use ones intellect.
Socialism has a strong belief in community and equality. They believe that everyone should cooperate and that competition is unnatural. They also believe in common ownership which means that no property should be private. They believe that human nature can be changed and humans can become something greater than what they are.
Capitalism is an ideology that focuses on economic growth. They believe that most of production should be privately owned. They have a huge focus on the market and supply and demand. They believe the market is the defining mechanism in ordering society.
Nationalism is the belief that a nation is better than every other nation. They believe that their nation is superior and all other nations should be below them. They believe that everyone has to look the same and have the same way of life.
Libertarians seek to maximize political freedom and autonomy. They emphasize freedom of choice and individual judgment.
Authoritarians favour enforcing strict obedience to authority at the expense of personal freedom.

We recently learnt about the ideologies in PLP to help us understand the powers in wars better. I had a decent amount of knowledge on the different ideologies, especially the ones in Canada, because I worked the federal elections this year as a poll clerk. This gave me a good base of knowledge but I learnt so much more. To start off this unit we took a quiz on ideologies so our teachers could know how much they needed to teach us. To put it nicely, the class could have done a little better. We then did a quiz at the start of class everyday until the class showed a lot of growth in our knowledge on ideologies. We spent a couple of classes being lectured on the different ideologies and taking notes in a style we have never tried before to improve our note taking. I chose to try mind map note taking and I ended up really enjoying that style because it was easy to categorize everything.

At the end of our learning on ideologies everyone got to take a test to see where we fell on the political spectrum. I took the test and my results were both surprising and exactly what I expected. I am more towards the left side which makes sense because I am a very forward thinker and not one to follow tradition. The part that surprised me was that I wasn’t more libertarian. I thought I would be much lower on the spectrum but I guess I am still quite the rule follower and I do enjoy enforcing rules.

Learning about ideologies and the political spectrum is very important and it’s something everyone should put in the time to do. I turn 18 this year which means that I will be able to vote and I think it is very important to know about politics if you’re going to put in a vote to who is in charge of your city/country. It’s also important to remember that people can have different political beliefs and we have to be accepting of them all. I hope you learned as much about politics from this post as I did and I hope you use your knowledge to help you vote.

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