I’ve always been a bit of a contrarian.

In the previous entry I discussed a little about how, generally, most folks become more Conservative as they age. This brought to mind the Political Compass test which attempts to establish where you fall in the Liberal/Conservative/Authoritarian/Libertarian scale. I first took the test in 2004 and while I didn’t blog about it at the time I did post it as an image on SEB.

To give an idea of what it attempts to do, here’s their sample graph that plots out where a few famous historical people fall on the scale:


When I first took the test my score was Economic Left/Right -4.62 and Social Libertarian/Authoritarian -4.92 which would place me down around Gandhi on the chart above.

I retook the test in January of 2012 to see if I’d grown more Conservative like you’re supposed to do when you get older. Here’s that graph:

I’m becoming even more of a Republican’s worst nightmare.

Clearly I was the exception to the rule. It’s been another 3 years since and I’m coming up on my 48th birthday so surely I’m starting to reverse the trend by now, right?


If I keep going at this rate they're going to need a bigger graph. 

If I keep going at this rate they’re going to need a bigger graph. 

Thus proving that the idea people become more Conservative as they age is a generalization. I blame my open mindedness and curiosity, both factors psychologists have identified as contributing to a liberal political outlook. If it seems like I’ve been getting worse in my liberal viewpoint over the years, you now have evidence that it’s not just your imagination.

It appears that, if anything, I’m becoming more liberal as I get older.

As near as I can tell, the first time I tool the Political Compass test was back in October of 2004 and the only reason I know that is because of the archive of SEB on the Internet Archive. I could have sworn that I blogged about it at the time, but I can’t find the entry in which I did so. The Wayback Machine shows that I listed my score at the time in the sidebar of SEB so I was able to find that my score back then was Economic Left/Right -4.62 and Social Libertarian/Authoritarian -4.92 which puts me solidly, but not deeply, in the Lefty/Libertarian field of the graph.

Having recently been reminded of the test I decided it was time to take it again. I’m sure I’ve taken it a couple of times over the years, but again I’m unable to locate any entries where I mentioned it if I had. Still, some 7+ years later surely I’ve bowed to the conventional wisdom and become more conservative in my old age, right? Well, not exactly:

I'm becoming even more of a Republican's worst nightmare.

So much for growing more Conservative in my old age. I’ve jumped to a solid 5 on the Economic Left/Right scale and have taken on a much more anti-authoritarian approach to life. If I had to guess I’d say that’s largely thanks to the eroding of civil liberties by the government over the last decade of war. But just because I’m much more Libertarian than anytime in the past you shouldn’t expect to see me voting for Ron Paul anytime soon.