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Wings Over Scotland

The Great Narrowing

Posted on February 11, 2015 by

Independent website Political Compass has just released its 2015 graph charting the ideological positions of all the political parties of the UK. It’s a fairly predictable one.


On the image above, we’ve added, for parties active in Scotland only, striped circles indicating each party’s 2010 position. But what does it tell us about 2015?

The PC chart is the closest it’s possible to come to settling the age-old disputes about who’s “left-wing” and who’s “right-wing”. Plotted on two axes in order to more accurately represent a party’s social and economic stances, it’s a more nuanced and precise guide, and by taking the site’s test readers can place themselves on the graph, which we’ve done by way of example – Wings comes out left of the Greens.

(The two-axis method illustrates that the BNP, for example, usually deemed to be far right, actually have relatively left-wing economic policies, because they’re tailored to the poor working-class areas where they get most of their support. It’s on social issues – chiefly immigration and LGBT rights – that the party is actually extremist.)

We can see that the SNP have remained just to the left of centre but have become slightly more authoritarian, due to policies like the anti-sectarianism football laws.

Labour haven’t budged from their economic centre-right position, but have become a little LESS authoritarian, having abandoned anti-civil-liberties policies like ID cards. The Conservatives and UKIP have both become more authoritarian, and the Tories have also moved economically to the right in pursuit of ever more-draconian austerity.

The Greens are placed exactly where they were in 2010, but the most dramatic shift is that of the Liberal Democrats, who have lurched dramatically to the right and also up across the centre line on the authoritarian/liberal axis, on account of being tied to the Tories in the coalition government.

The result is that for the first time ever, all three main UK parties – and also UKIP, the biggest fringe party – are now in the upper-right quadrant of the graph. Whoever UK voters elect, they’ll be getting an authoritarian right-wing government. The image below shows the “triangle of choice” available to voters in 2015 compared to 2010.


In the space of just one Parliament, that’s a pretty dramatic shift.

The only party likely to get a double-figure number of seats which is anywhere to the left of the centre, and the only one that’s now close to the equator on liberalism, is the SNP. If we assume for the sake of argument that the current polls are correct and that the Nats will therefore in fact be the third-largest party in the Commons, the graph changes to one that’s anchored far closer to the liberal centre.


This May’s election looks like being a crossroads for the UK. If the SNP hold the balance of power, it should be possible to arrest the drift to the authoritarian right and buy some time for the current Green surge to build into something with meaningful electoral force. If not, Labour, the Tories and the Lib Dems will almost certainly to continue to triangulate towards UKIP.

And as only one part of Britain can vote SNP, it’s up to Scots to decide.

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220 to “The Great Narrowing”

  1. Macart says:

    I suppose it won’t hurt to show our neighbours that there is a better way of governing. 😉

  2. Lollysmum says:

    Nice work Stu.

    Have you sent it to Duncy & all the other pseudo-journalists repeatedly spouting the mantra that Labour are centre left? They haven’t occupied that ground since Blair was elected but they keep trying to push that myth down everyone’s throats, particularly in England.

    Always nice when info comes from an independently funded source particularly when it turns out that it is Labour stalwart Glenys Kinnock who set it up.

    ‘They don’t like it up ’em Mr Mainwaring’

  3. Soda says:

    I took this test a few months back and was placed roughly where Wings are. Interestingly i posted the test on a site that has a fair number of right wing extremists on it from the UK as well as the USA and other places and invited them to take the test themselves.

    Long story short, only 2 or 3 right wingers posted their results and were dismayed to be in the the lower left quadrant. The rest i presume deigned to post their results at all because the their results were also far from their parties positions.

    The whole point of course was to demonstrate to the rightwingers that none of the present world leaders or parties represented them at all and how little real choice they had in the duopoly of the 2 party systems most western countries have.

  4. Calgacus says:

    Wings becoming a party Rev.Stu?

  5. cearc says:

    It would be very interesting if somebody did a large scale, across the Uk, opinion poll of Political Compass’s questions plus voting intention.

  6. Stoker says:


  7. Desimond says:

    Its like watching the prequel to V for Victory!

  8. dennis mclaughlin says:

    Funny how this ideological drift to the right is mirrored in our Press/MSM…

  9. Helena Brown says:

    Hey I just took the test and I am definitely a Winger, arrived in the same place as Stu, oh thank goodness for that would have hated to find that I was a secret Tory.

  10. uilleam_beag says:

    @Calgacus: “Wings becoming a party Rev.Stu?”

    If not a full-blown party, it’s always a bit of a political shindig on here.

    Boom. Boom.

  11. mogabee says:

    I would like to think the large influx to SNP will help control it’s authoritarian streak!

    I am left of Stu but more Libertarian.. ;D

  12. Dog says:

    Imagine leaving such an important decision down to the Scots!

    It baffles me that certain parties can completely ditch the ideologies that they were founded upon. It’s like the Scouts saying “Right fuck it, all this tying knots and helping people is boring so we’re going to start stealing cars instead”

  13. One_Scot says:

    I been convinced for some time that there are many voters south of the border that no longer see the Labour Tory party as representing them, and given the chance would vote for a more socially just party.

    Unfortunately they do not seem to have any real alternative other than UKIP, which is probably hardly ideal for many voters.

    I believe that if a party down south emerged with a similar attitude that the Scottish Government has, then they would do very well.

  14. Dr Ew says:

    Being passionately pro-independence doesn’t detract from a wish to see an end to our Southern neighbours being royally shafted by the corrupt cabal of Westminster and the City. The British State has nothing but contempt for its subjects and wherever we live we deserve much, much better.

  15. Desimond says:

    Column 5, Row 3!

    I feel all Johnny Beattie “Now You See it” with that Test Result!

  16. Grizzle McPuss says:

    So happy to confirm that I’m left and libertarian (in fact, more libertarian than Ghandi. Who knew?)

    The graph clearly shows that we are practically a WM one party state…merely a turd under differing titles

  17. Calum Craig says:

    It’s the people who still insist Labour is a left wing/ socialist party that I can’t get my head around.

  18. TheeForsakenOne says:

    The first time I did it pre-2010 I was roughly where the SNP are now. When I did it around 2013 I was plotted roughly where Wings is now (Although I think a little further to the left and more liberal).

    Now I’m as liberal as the Greens but way more left wing. I thought people were supposed to drift to the right as they got older? Maybe I’m just so disgusted by the behaviour of the right I’m naturally retreating from it.

  19. Johnny says:

    Took this yesterday and found I was left of everyone, including the SSP, and more libertarian than the Greens into the bargain!

  20. Marie clark says:

    Helena, same as you, done the test and I’m just about where Stu is, so happy with that.

    Isn’t it great the things you can find out on WOS. Clever lot our wingers.

  21. galamcennalath says:

    I suppose political parties will inevitably be more Authoritarian than their electorate because politicians want to pass legislation and impose their way of running things. So I’m not surprised that almost all parties lie above the axis.

    Having said that, the positioning of UKIP, Con and now LibDem is actually quite shocking. Anyone having done the test will see the site itself plots Thatcher marginally to the LEFT of that cluster!

    We often say Keir Hardy will be spinning. With Lab’s position definitely will!

    No surprise the UK is on the authoritarian right of the EU…

    Labour is actually Leftish by EU standards.

    Looks like we Scots … SNP, ScotGreens, SSP … are rather left wing!

  22. Brian Powell says:

    Unfortunately, there are still, “thick as shit in the neck of a bottle” politicians in Labour, like Curran, pushing to get Labour voters to go on blindly supporting Labour.

    If enough of the voters join her remains to be seen.

  23. Dorothy Devine says:

    I have just done the political compass test ad I am right beside Stu.

    Wonder just how many Wingers find themselves in that position?

    I’m willing to bet on a hugely high percentage!

  24. Will Podmore says:

    The SNP ‘left of centre’?! It is pro-EU, anti-referendum, pro-TTIP (which equals pro-US and pro-EU and pro-corporate rule).
    Under the SNP, teacher numbers, college places, and NHS bed numbers are all down. They promised that they would raise economic growth to the UK level, but the performance has worsened. They promised that they would match the GDP growth rates of small EU countries, but the performance has worsened. They promised that they would improve productivity, but the performance has worsened. They promised that they would improve healthy life expectancy, but the performance has worsened.
    The SNP is bought and sold by Souter’s gold.
    ‘Left of centre’ Ha!

  25. Tamson says:

    Did the test and came out very close to the Greens. Not sure about that, as I’d place myself halfway between them.

    IMO the test is pretty flawed WRT measuring where parties and people stand on the mechanisms of government. It’s written by someone who clearly doesn’t understand the notion of civic nationalism, for instance. There’s also no question in the test about localism.

  26. Ali says:

    Dammit, I knew I should have joined the Greens. Still, if we can just pull the SNP a wee bit more liberal

  27. David S Briggs says:

    A wee bit more Libertarian than you are Stu.

    Very telling.

  28. Marie clark says:

    See the troll has appeared again, can’t have much work to do today.

  29. Joemcg says:

    OT-did anyone see inside the commons on the devils channel? Toe curling stuff. Corrupt as fuck. Thanks proud scots for making us stay with these arseholes.

  30. Paul Kirkwood says:

    I also took the test , and found myself positioned pretty much in the same position as you. But then , I’ve always been a Scottish Nationalist who believed strongly in giving power to Individuals and taking it away from the State; Independence for Scotland and Scots!At heart really an old Anarchist, even if I am a Solicitor!

  31. Proud Cybernat says:

    Proud Cybernat very similar to Wings:

    Economic Left/Right: -6.63
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -3.69

  32. gillie says:

    It confirms that Tories come in many colours Red, Blue, Yellow and Pink.

  33. GrahamB says:

    Does Labour’s 1st quadrant position mean they are all Murphys!
    Thankfully I came up in the 3rd quadrant (-7.25, -4.72) I’d have been mortified if it had even been closer to the origin or worse still any plus figures in the result.

  34. Caroline Corfield says:

    Not surprised to find myself where I was before, left wing libertarian, but happy to find that many here and the site in general are also in that quadrant. Makes you wonder why there isn’t a party for us? Though I’m coming round to the Greens as my only party choice down here.

  35. No no no...Yes says:

    A fascinating article and I’m not surprised most parties are above the Authoritarian line. I am surprised about my own rating, I’ve even more left and libertarian than I thought.

    GE2015 really is the last chance saloon for Scottish voters to stand firm against the Westminster parties programme of austerity.

  36. Martin says:

    I agree, best outcome is SNP holding balance and keeping the terrors at bay long enough for England to go Green and give Britain the fair, progressive society that we crave. We may even, with a large SNP and Green component over the next decade or so, see the house of commons elections becoming democratic and proportional..

  37. Craig P says:

    Most people I know who’ve done this test end up near the greens. Either I know a lot of cool lefties, or UK politics is totally detached from the electorate. (Or both.)

  38. jackie g says:

    OH Dear,

    Oor fav wee troller is back is it playtime Will…

  39. The Man in the Jar says:

    I took the test this morning and found myself exactly where the SNP were in 2010 (Slightly more libertarian than where they are now) As a long term SNP supporter it makes me wonder if the SNP is my “natural home” or if supporting the SNP has altered my views. Chicken or egg which came first?

  40. I think most citizens of UK would be in bottom left square, this graph shows who the Big Two parties are really representing which is big right wing corporations who really could not care which of Big Two got in because they finance/ control both.

  41. Soda says:

    I see people are relived to find that they are in a similar place to wings but thats the point i was making, most people when they take the test are in the bottom left…. even right wingers and tory voters!

  42. think again says:

    I did this quite a while back and now seemed to have drifted further left and further libertarian.

    Recent experiences with a certain coalition government and a certain referendum, aided and abetted by MSM, the Establishment Broadcasting Corporation, big business and Jim Jog On may well explain this drift.

    As left as Wings and one square more libertarian than Stu I seem to be a contradiction in terms as my children regard me as a middle class, middle aged – ok coffin dodging – right wing capitalist clasped to the bosom of the blessed Margaret Hilda Roberts.

    In fact, I nestle comfortably within Pyotr Kropotkin`s beard.

  43. Ricky says:

    Done the test and ended up where Ghandi was.

    Phew glad of that, imagine after all this time finding out your a tory


  44. Soda says:

    @ Will Podmore,

    Am i being a bit hopeful to ask you to take the test or if you have to post your result?

  45. whiplash says:

    I took the test and it looks like by natural party of choice is the SNP. Would ya believe it.

  46. jimnarlene says:

    Wow, I’m just as left as the SSP but more libertarian than the Greens. Which is nice.

  47. I think most citizens of UK would be somewhere in bottom left square of graph ,this just shows you who the Big Two parties are really representing which is the Big right wing corporations who could not care which of Big Two wins because they finance/control both.

  48. Lollysmum says:

    I’ve just done the test & surprised myself

    Economic Left/Right -6.3
    Social Libertarian -8.0

    More libetarian than I thought so just a bit below Stu. Not bad for ex-services, ex police, ex probation but it does have to be said that I left all in disgust at the way people are trapped & abandoned once in the system. Now work in voluntary sector & that’s definitely where I belong so that ties in with these results 🙂

  49. Hoss Mackintosh says:

    Aye – Will is back – he must be really annoyed to see how far Labour have drifted over the years from a left wing, libertarian party to the current right wing, neo-liberal authoritarian, fascist party.

    Here Will – lets remind you – check out the chart at the bottom to see the drift…

    Thanks again – Glenys.

  50. The Man in the Jar says:

    Like I commented earlier I am very close to the SNP on the graph. After reading more comments I am feeling quite right wing compared to many “Wingers” 🙁

    It makes me question just how honest we are when filling in the questionnaire. Do we answer according to what we are or what we would like to be? Just wondering!

  51. Macart says:

    Who knew? 🙂

    Economic Left/Right: -6.38
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.1

  52. Alan McHarg says:

    Left of “Greens” and just below (by a fraction) of “Wings”. From a right wing authoritarian at the age of 16 (young soldier) to a “A true child of the 60’s/Hippy” at the age of 50. Thanks to the SNP and likes of Wings this rollercoaster ride has lead to a new enlightenment with a greater respect and appreciation of “Nation”.

  53. Milady de Winter says:

    I’m astounded. I took the test today. I would have expected myself to be a little more left of SNP, basically around where Plaid are but I also came out exactly where Wings are sitting. I have been an SNP voter for a fair few years now, but I am more aligned to Greens here. Interesting. Vote WOS?!

  54. Johnny says:

    My scores on Political Compass:

    Economic left/right: -8.25
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.95

  55. HandandShrimp says:

    I am more or less in between Wings and the Greens 🙂

    I agree with the idea that we will, by the motions we support and the people we choose as candidates pull the SNP a wee bit south and west.

  56. HandandShrimp says:

    Economic left -5.5
    Libertarian -4.62

    Hey I’m a moderate 🙂

  57. Desimond says:

    You can imagine a Labour person taking that and saying “Nothing about postal votes or self preservation…useless!!”

  58. Johnny says:

    Man in the Jar @ 12:37

    Perhaps it simply means that you are a more natural supporter of the SNP than many on here? It is, after all, reasonably well-known that much of its new support is more left wing in attitude than the party has been hitherto. There are also plenty here who are not in the SNP as well and one reason I personally have chosen not to join them (though I gave it serious thought) was that I did not feel that they represented my views fully.

  59. Lanarkist says:

    I seem to be in the bottom left four squares, more radical than I thought was!

    I don’t really have a political party to represent me, have to build a new one after we get Independence!

  60. grahamlive says:

    Always knew I was on the left, turns out I’m a right leftie. Slightly to the left of even the SSP (who’ll probably get my 2nd vote in 2016), and slightly south of the Greens on that chart. Hopefully the SNP can be pulled a bit more left, assuming their new members are largely of a leftie bent, which I suspect they probably are.

  61. HandandShrimp says:

    Poor Will

    The Political Compass is generally considered reasonably neutral politically so it must come as a pain to see the SNP on the left hand side of the line (albeit not by much). As a centrist social democratic party the SNP is pretty much bang on the money of what it claims to be. As are the Tories. Labour and the Liberals are selling under false pretences. Labour should be where the SDLP are.

  62. A.N.Surgent says:

    Thought I was way way left with a Scots-Irish background but turns out I am a green Indian called Ghandi.

  63. manandboy says:

    Congratulations Stu, and well done on another fine piece of work.

    Left, right or centre, we in Scotland are all part-time slaves.
    Our nation is defined largely by what we are not allowed to do.

    The Smith Commission proposals started with a long list
    of things we might be allowed to do.
    Then our Imperial masters in the Cabinet took a hand.
    As they now stand, we are not allowed to do most of what was on that list.

    The Smith Commission was an exercise in letting the Scots
    think for a while they could get what they want.
    Then they were reminded of their station in life.

    I am pleased, but not surprised, to be where Wings is.
    But where I want to be is Independent as I know you all do.

    My spirit is sick of not being allowed
    to do this, that, and the next thing
    by our Imperial slave owners in Westminster.

    There is in fact no such thing as a part-time slave.
    You are either one thing or the other.

    If you have a master, then you are a slave.

  64. osakisushi says:

    Like most folks, I discovered I too am with Ghandi. Guess it’s a frame of mind thing for those who aim for Scotland’s future.
    Wonder where that bloke Murphy from Labour would find himself. Suspect top right, just outside the box and not thinking.

  65. chris kilby says:

    It’s up to Scots to decide? No pressure, then…

  66. Rigmac7 says:

    Economic Left/Right: -6.38
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.9

    Hmmmmm 🙂

  67. jackie g says:

    My score was:

    Economic Left/Right: -7.63
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.26

  68. velofello says:

    I’m defined as a shade more of a collectivist than Ghandi. Jings.

  69. Luigi says:

    UKIP seems to be dragging the traditional parties ever right and authoritarian. It’s a bit unsettling, nay it’s bloody worrying, just how far from the centre they now are. Unless this trend is stopped, they will be rubbing shoulders with Adolf soon.

  70. Dougie says:

    So basically if everyone voted for what they believed in they’d vote Green as that would be closest to their ideals who also believe in Independence (both GPEW + SGP) but we’re all advised to follow the herd and vote SNP. Great logic there. The SNP have became more authoritarian due to their centralisation of education, police and named person. Nice play down. Yeah, let’s continue ignoring our principles and the Greens because them getting an estimated 11% UK wide to SNP 4% UK wide makes perfect sense. I’m sorry but I want independence as much as everyone else here but had it with strategic nonsense. Wish everyone else would do the same and start voting for what you really believe in.Cue troll accusations. Move along here, nothing to see.

  71. TJenny says:

    Wahay – did test and it looks like I’m safely sheltering under Wings. 😉

    Economic Left/Right: -7.5
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.26

  72. SqueuedPerspextive says:

    It would be nice if the message could be received by the older “always have, always will” labour voter that the Labour party they knew is dead and gone – what remains is now considerably more authoritarian and right-wing than the Tory government of Ted Heath.

    See the last diagram at the bottom of the page

  73. Dezcore says:


    Was surprised it was quite that deep.

  74. Albaman says:

    Just had a thought, is Spud Murphy thinking about the chance of him standing for the General Election in the hope that he gets elected along with Labour, and that he could then become “Secretary of state for Scotland”, until the Scottish elections come along.
    Would not put that past the “gruesome twosome ” ( Murphy and McTernan )

  75. Stoker says:

    I’m almost exact same spot as WOS.

    Economic -6.88
    SocLib/Aut -4.62

  76. grahamlive says:

    I just took the test again, giving the most batshit, whack-job Daily Mail type answers that I could. Pretty much hit the Tories right on the nose. Economic Left/Right: 9.38
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: 5.38 . Hardly surprising.

    My actual results, I’m relieved to say, we’re pretty much the polar opposite of that.

  77. Michael says:

    Sorry, guys, for an off-topic post. Please forgive me, Stu and fellow Wingers. Bo’ness SNP is running an appeal for funds. We want to open an election campaign hub this month and we need £500 to get this off the ground. Would you generous Wingers be prepared to help? We are only £103 short of our target. Four donations of £25 would take us to our target today. Thanks.

  78. Johnny says:

    Luigi @ 1:21 says

    “UKIP seems to be dragging the traditional parties ever right and authoritarian”.

    Well, either that or the main parties want to go that way for self-interested reasons (and to reward their pals in business etc at the expense of everyone else) and UKIP are a conveniently released excuse to allow it but give the appearance of ‘having to respond’.

  79. Ian Brotherhood says:

    Blistering, blood-boiling stuff on HSBC, Samantha Cameron, and more, in Richie Venton’s latest blog article:

  80. John O says:

    Well not that we needed proof that the red tory’s are right wing, but what will it say to there remaining supporter, that maybe they are more right wing in their thought process which may explain their hatred for the snp.

    Here’s my chart i am slightly left of the greens but way below them second opinion would be great any one, does mine say i am a middle of the road Anarcho-Syndicalism.

  81. Gods Country says:

    I am just below Fedel Castro’s nuts – not very happy about that for a number of reasons! 🙂

    O/T but BBC on Aberdeen Council letter

    “Aberdeen City Council’s senior legal advisor warned councillors they could be breaking the law by sending a letter supporting an independence referendum “No” vote, an inquiry has heard. The letter was sent with council tax bills last year.

    Five Labour and two Conservative councillors are facing a Standards Commission hearing.

    Jane McEacheran, the council’s senior solicitor, said she raised concerns on a number of occasions.”

    So which body said it wasn’t breaking any rules – the EC?

  82. John O says:

    Forgot to stick the chart in oops sorry.

  83. Shex says:

    Took the test and ended up somewhere inbetween the greens and snp. Pretty surprised, i thought I was more left wing.

  84. Annette says:

    “If the SNP hold the balance of power, it should be possible to arrest the drift to the authoritarian right and buy some time for the current Green surge to build into something with meaningful electoral force.”

    That’s a very interesting point.

  85. Dointhebiz says:

    I think every voter should do this wee chart test, very telling, Looks like I`m going to have to join the Green party [I`d never had thought]

  86. Ronnie says:

    Last time I did the Compass, I was between Plaid and the SNP, though not a member at that time.

    Now, as an SNP member, I find myself between the SDLP and Nelson Mandela.


  87. Dunderian says:

    The Man in the Jar says:
    11 February, 2015 at 12:37 pm
    Do we answer according to what we are or what we would like to be? Just wondering!

    That’s a fair point. From what I recall of the last time I tried the test, there were questions that I felt I answered ‘wrongly’. I tended to take a more nuanced approach to issues than the test allowed.

    The other thing was that I rarely “strongly (dis)agreed” with anything on the test. Hence, I suspect, my more moderate scores in comparison to other people’s results.

  88. Helena Brown says:

    I did it again and found I was off the graph on the left. I seem to be regressing and becoming more Libertarian than I ever was. I think I just went with my feelings this time instead of worrying if I was answering it correctly.
    Who let the troll in, you think it would realise we don’t care what he says.

  89. Gods Country says:

    @ Michael

    That’s a contribution from me. Post a pic when its all done up 🙂

  90. Helena Brown says:

    Stoker, mine was -13 and -8.82, I don’t seem to have a political party to suit me. I am an SNP member as well.

  91. jackie g says:

    Helena Brown says:

    Who let the troll in, you think it would realise we don’t care what he says.

    It was playtime Helena and someone left the gate doubt he will be back!

  92. Taranaich says:

    Booooo, I really wanted to be all different and stand apart from the cool kids, but I end up in the same ballpark as other Wings folk:

    Economic Left/Right: -8.5
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.67

    All this time I thought I was pretty centrist, turns out I’m more economically left wing than the SSP! How about that. I figured I’d be a little less Libertarian too given my thoughts on certain subjects, but I even beat the Greens on that, which surprises me.

    Still, at least Stalin’s more left-wing than I am. That’s something.

  93. Doug D says:

    The way I see this ( being placed diagonally out from the Greens) is that I vote SNP because of a third axis: economic, social, and constitutional. If there was a third axis and a three dimensional graph, then the SNP would be closest to my constitutional preference and would win. Suspect a lot of the readers are in the same position.

  94. jackie g says:

    Yes this is slightly O/T but Micheal’s post @1.46pm reminded me of this,

    Anyone who is passing go in and have a coffee.

  95. Jon D says:

    C’mon Stu, get Hothersall to post his results and expose himself for the fascist liar that we all know he is.

    Or maybe not.

    Eh, Dunc…you know you want to.

  96. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Yeah, let’s continue ignoring our principles and the Greens because them getting an estimated 11% UK wide to SNP 4% UK wide makes perfect sense.”

    I will give you £100 out of my own pocket if the Greens get three or more MPs. The SNP can plausibly expect ten times as many as the Greens get, and conceivably 40 or 50 times as many. Please try to reconcile yourself to the realities of First Past The Post. It eats naive idealism for breakfast.

    Nevertheless, I specifically noted that SNP success could buy time for the Greens, so get the chip off your shoulder.

  97. Kev says:

    Yikes, just discovered I’m more libertarian and left-wing than Ghandi…interesting as on the site I seem to agree most with the Green’s policies, as do the majority of voters. It will be interesting to try it again once they have updated it for the coming GE with the SNP included, might have to change my party!

  98. Brian says:

    Wow! I’m Green and I never knew.
    Rev Stu: Do you have a Moral Compass that could be tested against the main UK parties?

  99. heedtracker says:

    “having abandoned anti-civil-liberties policies like ID cards.” A certain space cadet called Capt James T Murphy was desperate to get those bio-metric ID cards for everyone going, with Crash Gordon ofcourse and starting costs alone at £12+bn.

    Here in England, the day after the ref all the actual progressive liberal English people that I know were genuinely shocked at the result.

    An incredible opportunity to bring power to the people pissed away by proud Scot buts and all the usual jingoists at the OO and the BBC. Its all about perspective though, with British nationalists good, Scottish democracy an evil threat to Britons and wouldn’t our hearts be broken blah blah bleh…

  100. Johnny says:

    If you took that 4% SNP poll score (and they often get 5%) and multiplied it by 10 to reflect a uniform vote across the UK (pretending for a moment they stood everywhere), you’d hit 40% support (rather higher than the Greens manage). Alternatively, if the Greens stood here only and you divided that 11% support (which is on the high side for them in GE polling)by ten you would only get 1.1%. Of course, you could accept that to do any of this is comparing apples with oranges in a FPTP system. Might be a different story if UK GE was conducted under UK-wide PR.

  101. No no no...Yes says:

    Nicola’s speech to UCL in London being broadcast live now:

  102. Clootie says:

    You only have ONE Labour Party shown?
    What about Scottish Labour and it’s “very different” policies

    This articles suggests that Scottish Labour has the same policies as the rest of the UK.

    …and yes, I’m being sarcastic 😛

  103. msean says:

    I think the troll is here looking for positivity,sounds like he hasn’t been paying attention to events in Scotland. Westminster has the whip hand,so vote snp for Scotland interests,not the City of Londons’.

  104. bookie from hell says:

    Gordon Brown getting trashed PMQs

  105. Johnny says:

    Nicola’s speech live online but not on BBC News Channel, I note. If it was Broon, there’d be wall-to-wall but we clearly don’t want too many hearing what the FM has to say!

  106. Albamac says:

    Economic Left/Right: -6.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.59

    Let’s party! 🙂

  107. BornOptimist says:

    It looks, to me (only partly tongue in cheek), as though the SNP ought to have had candidates in all constituencies across the UK, just to give all voters a real alternative to parties favouring austerity. They are the only sizeable left of centre party likely to make headlines re their policies, rather than on sensationalist grounds, in the MSM.

  108. Dr Jim says:

    I’ve not taken the test but i’m definitely left of the troll
    The Bastirt
    Woops does that mean i’ve moved right

  109. ghostly606 says:

    Almost right on Wings here:

    Clearly brainwashed! 🙂

    Interesting that all parties left of centre have pro independence agenda, with the exception of George Galloway.

  110. Lollysmum says:

    I’ve just taken Bo’ness over their target. So come on get cracking on that building-what are you waiting for 🙂 only joking-hope you do well.

  111. mjaei says:

    Haha. I just did the test & ended up almost in the extreme bottom left corner.

    Economic -9.25
    SocLib/Aut -7.59

    I guess, in comparrison, I almost make Wings look like a relatively authoritarian right-winger!

  112. MarkAustin says:

    Luigi says:

    11 February, 2015 at 1:21 pm

    UKIP seems to be dragging the traditional parties ever right and authoritarian. It’s a bit unsettling, nay it’s bloody worrying, just how far from the centre they now are. Unless this trend is stopped, they will be rubbing shoulders with Adolf soon

    This trend was established long before UKIP. It’s a combination of factors.

    The prevailing economic consensus hides a right-wing political bias under a cloak of economic necessity. Read “23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism” by Ha-Joon Chang for a very clear exposition of this (and other economic fallacies.

    New Labour and the Orange Book Lib Dems bought into this and moved right. Coupled with New Labour traingulatin g the Tories, this had the effect of pushing both the Tories and the so-called political center rightwards.

    As a consequence, despite appearances, the bulk of the UK population is significantly to the left of this so-called center, but they don’t know (unless they do tests like this) because the political consensus means that poulay views (e.g. rail nationalisation—supported by a majority of TORY voters) are considered beyond the pale and cannot be mentioned.

    UKIP has pulled the Tories a bit to the right on social matters, but, as you see from the chart they are comfortably to the left of them on economic issues.

  113. Callum says:

    5 of us just did this in the office (large financial company) and all of us were between 4 and 5 squares in left-leaning in the left/right balance and between 4 and 7 squares libertarian leaning in the libertarian/authoritarian scale.

    Given that we’ve recently all done Myers-Briggs tests recently (and we are quite different) it was really interesting to see how our political leanings were quite in sync. We’re trying to get our team mates (based in the SE England) to do the test to see if they come out the same and whether this is an England/Scotland thing.

    small sample size – but the lesson is that political leaning and Myers-Briggs has no relationship! #notexpectingthat

  114. Giving Goose says:

    Regarding Galloway being on the left.

    He most definitely isn’t; he’s a chancer and has only carved out a pseudo political position to justify him having a career as a politician.

    He’s clever enough to realise that the only possible “compass” position for him is on the “Left” but that’s not the same as genuinely believing in policies that are recognisably of the “Left.”

    If the political landscape was turned 180 degrees in the UK, Galloway would carve out a position on the “Right”

    He is that much of a fraud.

  115. No no no...Yes says:

    O/T Murphy seems to have melted into the background this week. He and his advisors have probably realised that he is a liability rather than as asset. He seems to be loading the popgun for others to fire. It seems Magrit Curran is taking the lead and getting a doing at the moment. Murphy is also fly enough to protect his own interest, he doesn’t want to lose his seat at GE 2015. Remember, it’s JIm first, Labour next, UK 3rd and Scotland way down the list.

  116. Midgehunter says:

    In comparison to me, it seems Gandhi is a facist right wing thug…!

    Maybe I should start again as something can’t be right. 😉

  117. Grouse Beater says:

    What’s the definition of ‘Libertarian’ as used in that survey?

  118. Robert Peffers says:

    @Dr Ew says:11 February, 2015 at 11:42 am:

    ” … The British State has nothing but contempt for its subjects and wherever we live we deserve much, much better.”

    Now you mention, “The British State”, (and I really do not wish to seem pedantic), but there really is no such thing as, “THE”, British State. There are five British States and four of them are non-UK. The actual point is the choice of the term, “Subjects”, rather than citizens?

    Just who is subjected to whom? Are not the elected persons in a government the servants of the citizens and does that not make them our subjects? Also, in the three Kingdom of England countries everyone is legally subject to, “Her Majesty”, but with her Royal powers delegated to Her Majesty’s Parliament.

    It’s a wee bit confused, don’t you think? What’s more we Scots are legally Sovereign and the monarch is our servant.So the elected members of HM Government are certainly our subjects and our elected servants. I think it must be long past the time to give some of them a wee jolt of reality.

  119. Neil says:

    While I am very keen to vote SNP and get rid of current yellow Tory Alan Reid; “if the SNP hold the balance of power” I fear is not likely as the red and blue Tories already co-operate a lot and surely are only using the election, with the help of BBC etc, to close ranks more?

  120. Valerie says:


    BBC reporting 7 senior councillors in Aberdeen are to face a Standards Commission hearing, for being involved in sending out letters with Council Tax bills, prior to the referendum.

    Think it’s 5 Labour and 2Tory councillors.

    Disgusting, and will no doubt be swept under the carpet, when I would want idiots like this barred from ever standing again.

  121. Muscleguy says:

    I’m further towards the lower left than you Rev. I’ll give you a pass and assume your current home has rubbed off on your politics somewhat.

    Mind you I bet if I had taken it before the referendum campaign and before I started campaigning with RIC and all those SSP etc types and encountering the Commonweal etc I would be more further upper right than where I am now.

    I am certainly more radical than my Labour/No wife.

  122. mogz says:

    We have been told nothing of the criteria used in deciding where to place the parties. That makes it just a graph of nat opinion. Labour, in ceasing to be New, in reversing policy from Brown’s time on welfare as well as civil liberties, have shifted significantly leftward in important ways. While the SNP is fampusly authoritarian on its “named persons” family policy and shocker of charging innocent people a fee for criminal defence. So SNP and Labour are in fact at the positions shown for each other.

  123. HandandShrimp says:

    Grouse Beater

    In the context of Libertarian vs Authoritarian it covers a range of issues from religious orthodoxy and state intervention to free thinking and no state intervention (in social affairs). So allowing same sex marriage is Libertarian and banning it would be authoritarian (making it compulsory for everyone would also be authoritarian 😉

    I see the BNP go all the way up to 11 on authoritarian.

  124. Bill Steele says:

    The authoritarian position of the SNP is much more dangerous to liberty than the chart indicates. The Named Person scheme and the National Register scheme are more in the direction of totalitarianism. The government is taking parenting responsibility away from parents and giving it a person outside the family when there is no evidence of the children being vulnerable to any kind of mistreatment. The National Register dangerously makes possible government control of persons that has nothing to do with it’s task delivering justice in the political, economic and social areas of life. After the May election I’ll quit my membership of the SNP. The greens look a more likely place for me. I took the test. I’m at the same position on the economic scale as the Scottish Socialist Party and one point higher than the Greens on the Social continuum.

  125. Lollysmum says:

    Just watched the Q & A part of Nicola’s speech in London. Some intelligent questions & comprehensive answers. She got a huge round of applause at the end. Much better than I would have expected but it seems she was well recieved & has dispelled a few myths today.

  126. Doug D says:

    Does anyone know if you took the whole population, whether they’d be equally spread in the 4 quadrants? I suspect not, because it seems like bottom left and top right are natural pairings but does anyone have any info on this?

  127. Johnny says:

    Neil @ 3:37

    Vote SNP if that is who you want to vote for. If ranks are closed despite sizeable SNP vote as you suggest, then you know that Scotland will never be listened to. Then you agitate for indyref 2 on the grounds of democratic deficit being even more obvious.

  128. liz says:

    Like most wingers I’m to the left of the greens – we need to start our own party.

    Murphy going quiet – please let it be true – couldn’t stand his face and monotonous, Rev I.M.Jolly, voice every day.

    Bet BBC Scotland will try to bury any mention of Nicola at UCL today.

  129. Wilty says:

    I am vertically level with Wings but have just fallen off the left-hand side of my political compass… Should I worry, or is it just my hippy past catching up with me?

  130. Gods Country says:

    Sorry but O/T again – update on the useless Aberdeen Cooncil.

    “Aberdeen letter hearing adjourned – A Standards Commission hearing into the conduct of seven councillors has been adjourned after a key witness pulled out of giving evidence.

    Former Aberdeen City Council chief executive Valerie Watts had been due before the hearing via video-link.

    The hearing chairman described her late call-off as disrespectful and bordering on contempt.

    The five Aberdeen Labour and two conservative councillors are accused of breaking the code of conduct by sending out a politically motivated letter to council tax payers ahead of last year’s independence referendum.”

  131. Karmanaut says:

    I’m precisely the same distance to the left as Wings, and three blocks down.

    I suppose this Labour shift to a right wing authoritarian party is in response to public opinion mainly south of the border. Public opinion which will have been steered by the MSM to suit their own agenda. This is what happens when the media is run by the wealthiest people. And I include the BBC in that.

  132. Will Podmore says:

    Marie and Jackie think calling an opponent a troll suffices to refute his arguments – wrong.
    Hoss Mackinstosh thinks Labour is a fascist party – wrong. Handandshrimp thinks the SNP is left of centre because some polling outfit says so, ignoring the SNP’s plain political practices, and taking what it says about itself as definitive. An elementary fallacy.
    I notice that none of you has engaged at all with the realities of SNP policy in practice that I drew your attention to.
    You can call yourselves progressive till you’re red in the face, but if you back the reactionary EU, you are a reactionary.

  133. Douglas Macdonald says:

    Having been introduced to the Political Compass website by this website, I took some time to consider each question in turn before placing my answer. The net result was:

    Economic Left/Right -7.0
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian -4.92

    Given the fact that I had a great time in the “swinging sixties”, it is pleasing to know that I have remained true to the principles of my youth and not drifted to the right as other septuagenarians I know.

  134. thedogphilosopher says:

    Although I’ve always voted SNP and am still a member, I’ve never been comfortable with the nitty-gritty humdrum of branch politics, part of this stems from my instinctive dislike at the way people (politics in general not just the SNP) manoeuvre for, or wield, that wee smidgeon of power. I also hate the fact that politics is dominated by males wearing the same grey suits and pastel-shaded tie and shirt combinations. Why do these types always end up running things?

    Once independence is achieved I would like to see Scotland become a very different kind of place to that of UKOK which is now driven by rampant, myopic capitalism. Scotland could and should be a country with a strong ‘green’ agenda where EVERYONE has a decent place to live and has a decent, liveable income whether they work or not. There should ample, cheap public transport and the dreaded car culture treated with contempt (in urban areas specifically). In fact nearly anything that America promotes should be given the big bargepole treatment.

    And politics should not become ‘a job for life’.

    I could go on.

  135. Will Podmore says:

    Soda politely asked what my score was on the Political Compass:
    It was
    Economic Left/Right: -9.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.9

  136. steveasaneilean says:

    I “took the test” and landed almost bang on top of the Greens.

    Maybe I should listen to my son more often…

  137. Grouse Beater says:


    Businessmen believe ‘libertarian’ means free of excessive taxes, regulation, and legal and moral accountability, to them it really means all power to their tyrannies.

    There is libertarian capitalism, and the left libertarian. There is such a thing as a socialist libertarian – but that means you’re anti-subsidised capitalism. (You have that in some African states but not here or in Europe.) You believe in a decentralisation of authority.

    No libertarian capitalist believes in a non-subsidised economy. How can they? That would involve government taxes for the people not for capital.

    The last thing it means is live and let live. The original Roman meaning is more akin to a basic freedom of expression.

    I ask because the label ‘libertarian’ is widely corrupted, the exact opposite of its traditional definition.

  138. Gods Country says:

    Will, Will, Will, Will, will …………………… not go away. No joking, what would we do without you. Your a bundle of sweet joy 🙂

  139. wingman 2020 says:

    Economic Left/Right: -5.63
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.95

    This is me… If anyone gives a rat’s ass!

  140. Andrew Walker says:

    I, like many others on here am basically Ghandi………..

  141. HandandShrimp says:

    Will, the political compass works on the basis of the political parties’ stated policies and views to the issues used as a benchmark…no different from taking it as an individual.

    What was your score btw?

  142. HandandShrimp says:

    Ignore my last I see it just above.

  143. HandandShrimp says:


    Will, given your stated political views your score seems reasonable, so what is your beef with the political compass?

  144. McBoxheid says:

    I took the test and was slight lower and left than Stu. Guess this confirms my “anti neoliberal rich bastards owning and controlling the rest of us” ideology.

  145. Marcia says:

    Will has escaped again.:)

  146. @ Giving Goose 3.32
    Galloway is in fact a Quantum Politician, which means he can be in many political places at once. And, significantly, he did once ‘pose’ as a cat.

  147. Christian Schmidt says:

    While I enjoy Political Compass a lot, it has to be said that their scoring of the parties is based on *their* of what the parties would do, and not what they say they would do (or even necessarily what they did do).

    For example, the idea that the Nats have if anything become more authoritarian *after that referendum campaign* is in my view nuts.

    Similarly, the idea that economically there is barely a difference between Labour and the LibDems is just plain silly.

  148. K1 says:

    @Helena, this is mine…similar to your second go;

    E L/R -12.5
    SL/A -7.59

    I too am off the chart!

    I didn’t joint the SNP, but I did join the greens after ref.

  149. Richard Taylor says:

    I came out a fraction more left-wing and more libertarian than Wings, around -7/-7

    I would caution that the test does not give you a middle, ‘don’t know or don’t care’ option. I am a little sceptical about it in that I don’t know if many people would strongly agree with the authoritarian positions – it’s easier to say yes to the more obvious left-wing and libertarian positions. Also, it’s easy to say that you adhere to the positions stated; some are harder to follow. For instance, ‘rich people should be taxed more’. A better question for someone in my economic group would be ‘do you agree that YOU should be taxed more?’ to which I would agree provided that the money was spent on education / health / social projects / infrastructure and not nuclear weapons / foreign wars and so on.
    Finally in an American context the notion of ‘Libertarianism’ is so closely connected with ‘the right to own guns’ that an acquaintance flatly told me that I must be on the authoritarian side of the graph because I felt that there should be more effective licensing and restrictions on some gun types, in the USA.

  150. Edward says:

    Latest pearls of wisdom from Labour MP Ian Murray – “Since 2010, I can’t recall a single 10-minute rule Bill or Private Member’s Bill that has been brought by an SNP member in this place that would devolve any powers to Scotland”

    Yes you read right, Murray spouting that the SNP could have requested additional powers, by simply having a private members bill.

    No doubt in this fantasy world of Murray’s, the SNP would have been wildly supported by Labour in order to get these powers.

    Is anyone really sure there is not a parallel universe that Labour inhabit?

    (Story is in the Herald online, politics section)

  151. K1 says:

    Does anyone have a link to Nicols’a speech this afternoon?

  152. gavmatt says:

    My reading of -8.0 & -5.65 is more left & liberal than I was expecting and that probably applies to others too. I think that this is due to there being no neutral answer to any of the questions. Had there been, my results may have moved a few squares towards the centre.

    I’ll be voting SNP this May for sure, but will need to look a bit closer into the Green’s policies for the 2016 elections, as I’ve been ignorant of them so far. My interests in politics had slipped somewhat before the referendum but that’s all changed now.

  153. lumilumi says:

    Took the test for fun although I can’t vote in the UK GE.

    I ended up as liberal as Greens (and Wings) but slightly to the left of even Wings. :-O (I don’t consider myself a rabid lefty – I’m an entrepreneur, after all, and have a gripe with our 24% VAT.)

    We have our own GE coming up in April, it’d be interesting to see how Finnish political parties would score on this. For instance, I’d imagine the traditional “Big Three” (Social Democrats, Centre Party and National Coalition (rightist)) would be surprisingly close together, somewhere around the centre with one slightly left and two slightly right, all slightly authoritarian.

    The main rightist party (National Coalition) would still probably be left of Labour… The biggest winner of last GE, the Eurosceptic, anti-immigration “True Finns” would be almost as high but to the left of BNP.

    The Social Democrats would probably be around where the SNP is, the Left Alliance maybe where the SSP is, the Greens where the Greens are. Some other parties sprinkled here and there. (In a full PR system we have dozens of parties, usually 8-12 in Parliament.)

    All in all, a bit more balanced than the UK situation even though there’s been a drift right in the past 30 or so years. However, as we have a PR system, ALL governments are coalitions – and voters expect that, they’d be horrified at a single-party government! Not democratic, smacks of dictatorship etc.

    No party in my lifetime has held a simple majority in the 200-seat Parliament (the Speaker cannot vote so effectively 199 MPs) and I don’t expect that to happen in my lifetime. I don’t think any party has ever had a simple majority since Finland got a modern PR full suffrage (including women!) devolved Parliament in 1906 and then our own independent one in 1917. So, understandably, we have a very different political culture. Shaped by a written constitution, elected head of state with few political powers (since constitution revision in the 1990s), unicameral Parliament and an open list d’Hondt PR system.

    As to how the Finnish GE will go… The main righty party has taken a nose-dive in the polls since last summer when the too-slick, too-right Alexander Stubb became their leader (and Finland’s PM). The Centre Party (which is actually slightly right of centre) will probably be the biggest winners with a landslide (in Finnish terms).

    The “True Finns” will lose, the Greens bounce back from their drubbing in the last GE, they’re now up at about 9.5%, a bit ahead of the lefty lefties. Christian Democrats (socially illiberal centrists) up a bit, Swedish People’s Party (liberal righty, mainly concerned with the rights of Swedish-speaking Finns and teaching everybody in Finland to speak Swedish) down a bit, both under 4% – but both are usually included in governments as useful coalition partners.

    The Greek situation will put an interesting twist, though. Pro-EU parties (the big three, Greens, Left Alliance, ChristDems, Swedes) have to walk a tightrope. The Eurosceptic parties, biggest of which is “True Finns”, will milk it for all they can. You know the drill: honest, hard-working Finnish taxpayers paying for corrupt and lazy Greeks to live a life of Riley – they’ve even got nicer weather, damn it! And all those Giorgiouses coming here to take our jobs (in kebab/pizza places??) and stealing our beautiful blonde women, damn it!

    Sorry for another long post.:-( Politics is just so interesting that I get carried away. 🙂

  154. dougiekdy says:

    Did the chart and printed my wee certificate..

    My dot is on Gandhi’s right arm – that’ll dae for me then:-)

  155. Barontorc says:

    @Gods Country says:
    11 February, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    ‘Sorry but O/T again…’ This episode may be much more telling than it looks to be…

    Council Chief Executives were the Reporting Officers for each council area during the Referendum – I believe.

    How are these Chief Execs appointed and by whom?

    If they were appointed to their position, in effect by the sitting Council, could they be in danger of politicisation by virtue of that fact?

    Given that they could feel to be in a very difficult situation, as perhaps in this case feeling compromised, were these officials the right people to run the polling and official reporting of our Referendum, or any election, for that matter.

    Which begs the real question, how is the Electoral Commission structured and who set it up?

    We should leave no stone unturned – we either get the democratic system needed or we lose our democratic power.

    Know who your dealing with here. Remember who clamoured for the Electoral Commission to be used from the very first day the Referendum was announced – the unionist parties – all on-song.

    Wake up Scotland.

  156. K1 says:

    S’okay Stu’s just put Nicola’s speech up on the new thread!

    Excellent! 🙂

  157. Clootie says:

    Interesting – just left of the old SNP spot. I must be drifting right with age 😀
    Still way, way to the left of Labour. I know – not that difficult to be left of Labour!

  158. KennyG says:

    That was a surprise. A little more left and I may have left the page. Although I see some of you did. Didn’t expect that at all.

    Economic left/right -7.5

    Social libertarian/authoritarian -5.08

  159. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “The government is taking parenting responsibility away from parents and giving it a person outside the family when there is no evidence of the children being vulnerable to any kind of mistreatment”

    Don’t talk such cobblers, Bill.

  160. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Labour, in ceasing to be New, in reversing policy from Brown’s time on welfare as well as civil liberties, have shifted significantly leftward in important ways”

    Cobblers. They’re getting more and more draconian on welfare with every passing day. Just this morning Rachel Reeves was insisting that entitlement to unemployment benefit should end after two years. And the entire point of Political Compass is to separate authoritarianism/liberalism from left and right, which are economic terms, so saying “they’ve moved left by abandoning ID cards” is just stupid.

  161. Kennedy says:

    I too was near Wings/Greens. Intertesting.

    As people continue to reject Labour we may see support for the Greens increase in the Scottish Parliament. I would welcome that.

    However, SNP for westminster. lets get some control over our own country and our own lives.

  162. Gods Country says:

    Apparently now the Aberdeen council shambles has been adjourned it won’t reconvene until after the election – for political reasons according to BBC Radio Scotland Lies. Who fookin decides that. It’s a joke but no surprise.

  163. Silverytay says:

    I am happy with my result , ended up between Wings & Greens.

  164. Political compass is just a bit of fun, you know. Given that the method used to place people on the axes is just one badly-designed questionnaire, I’m not exactly sure how they might go about other individuals and other parties, other than “I reckon they’d say …”

    It’s especially difficult to place parties, especially broad churches like the Conservatives: While agreeing for the most part on political economy, they straddle the whole range, from the hang-em-flog-em brigade to a much more libertarian tendency. Ditto UKIP to an even greater extent, with the great contrast between the embarrasing-homophobic-gaffe councillors on one hand and naive pot-smoking American-style right-libertarians on the other.

    There’s plenty of room to disagree on where to place Labour here, but I don’t think there’s much point in denying that they’ve moved to the left at least a little since Miliband took over, contrary to what this suggests.

    The SNP are difficult to place primarily because of the contrast between rhetoric and actually policy. They want an end to austerity, and more progressive fiscal policy, but purposefully run budget surpluses and leave tax rates untouched in order to downplay their existing powers. Neither are they above recycling nonsense tory attacks on Gordon Brown and Labour as having “bankrupted the country”. They make progressive noises (and actions, to be fair) on issues like gay marriage, race, sectarianism, etc. and yet are comfortable getting in bed with Brian Souter.

    The one thing that can be said about the SNP, in common with all flavours of nationalism, is that they have a strong authoritarian, even autocratic, tendency. This can be seen in the name, and with the co-opting of national flags and symbols, the vanguardist attitude in the face of the referendum defeat (adopting “the 45” as a badge of honour), the admiration of Putin for “restoring a substantial part of Russian pride”, the paternalistic iliberalism behind their anti-sectarianism measures, and their centralising tendency.

  165. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    ‘I don’t think there’s much point in denying that they’ve moved to the left at least a little since Miliband took over, contrary to what this suggests.”

    On what evidence?

    “The one thing that can be said about the SNP, in common with all flavours of nationalism, is that they have a strong authoritarian, even autocratic, tendency. This can be seen in the name, and with the co-opting of national flags and symbols, the vanguardist attitude in the face of the referendum defeat (adopting “the 45? as a badge of honour), the admiration of Putin for “restoring a substantial part of Russian pride”, the paternalistic iliberalism behind their anti-sectarianism measures, and their centralising tendency.”

    What a lot of unsupported assertion and ludicrous sweeping generalisation. You appear, for one thing, unable to differentiate between “Yes voters” and the parliamentary SNP. And seriously, fuck right off with the Putin bollocks.

  166. john king says:

    I did it this morning but I didn’t see the measures so I did it again

    I do feel as if I’ve just eaten a Flake in a very suggestive manner. 🙂
    does that make me a bad person?

  167. john king says:

    Charlie Murphy says
    “They make progressive noises (and actions, to be fair) on issues like gay marriage, race, sectarianism, etc. and yet are comfortable getting in bed with Brian Souter.”

    I presume you have pictures detective Murphy?

  168. JGedd says:

    I did the test twice and found myself just about off the charts in the bottom left quadrant – actually the second box up from the bottom corner. I always expected that I would be out on my own but not as way out on a limb as that. You wouldn’t suspect it if you met me – honest. And I don’t think I have much in common with Will Podmore though we seem to have similar scores.

    However, I believe in Scottish independence, which trumps everything at the moment for me.

  169. Anthony McGregor says:

    I did the test, and was astonished to find the end result was this:

    I knew I espoused Labour and the Tories, but to come left and lower than the Greens really suprised me.

  170. Grouse Beater says:

    The British Labour party blocked Scotland’s renaissance and halted its democratic progress and civic rights, and there’s still posters on here claiming it’s moving to the left.

    Someone toss them a white stick!

  171. wingman 2020 says:

    @Charlie Murphy

    “…Political compass is just a bit of fun, you know. Given that the method used to place people on the axes is just one badly-designed questionnaire…”

    I disagree with you.

    In simple terms, questionnaires may generally be graded by three things:

    1. a ‘reliability coefficient’ (Would you answer it the same on a depressing Monday as you would if you’d just scooped the lottery on a Friday)

    2, And how ‘well correlated’ (How well the input data is correlated to the categories. The more data you collect and relate, the more accurate the questionnaire s likely to be)

    However… I suspect in this case, that one doesn’t need these quantitative methods

    The questionnaire and results, have ‘High Face Validity’ (In other words, there is a strong sense that it makes sense to the people who participate)

    Overall, perhaps ‘a bit of fun’ as you call it… But with some very clear and robust outcomes that makes perfect sense to anyone ‘politically aware.’

  172. Croompenstein says:

    Charlie says meowoowwwwmeeoowwwmeeeowwwwmeowwww….

    roughly translated as ‘utter pish’

  173. wingman 2020 says:

    “…the admiration of Putin for “restoring a substantial part of Russian pride…”

    Credit where credit is due. And a change to hear a politician speak truthfully. (Although I think ‘admiration’ was wrongly used)

    My wife is Russian. If there is one thing we both admire Putin for, it’s that he helped pull Russia back together. We listen to ‘twitter’ and news on both sides and it’s not all as black and white as the UK and US like to paint it.

    Salmond is an astute politician and statesman. What he said was exactly correct and more balanced than anything coming out of Westminster.

  174. What a lot of unsupported assertion and ludicrous sweeping generalisation. You appear, for one thing, unable to differentiate between “Yes voters” and the parliamentary SNP. And seriously, fuck right off with the Putin bollocks.

    I’m not sure exactly what you mean by “unsupported assertion”, since a lot of that is simply verifiable fact, e.g. Souter’s donations and subsequent SNP favours, the SNP’s and Yes’s copious use of flags and national symbols, and Salmond’s comments on Putin and “Russian pride”, etc*

    *and interestingly, his grudging admiration for Farage in the same interview; obviously there are strong analogies that can be drawn between UKIP and the SNP (left-right aside) and in the event of a referendum, I suspect we’ll be hearing a lot of arguments that sound awfully familiar on self-determination and democratic deficits, putting Britain first, proudBritsbut, net subsidies, and BBC bias.

  175. bugsbunny says:

    I took that political quiz, I always thought myself as Centre and rather Authoritarian, but it turns out I am quite Libertarian and I was way far off the scale on the left, further off field than Stalin. A Libertarian Trotskyite? I suppose you could always weight the questions to skew the results.


  176. Grouse Beater says:

    Charlie Murphy: “Souter’s donations and subsequent SNP favours.”

    The Scottish parliament voted for same sex marriages against Souter’s wishes.

    “copious use of flags and national symbols”

    It’s Scotland’s national flag. Should we fly Nepal’s?

    “obviously there are strong analogies that can be drawn between UKIP and the SNP”

    And there are strong analogies between your thinking and an amoeba.

    And following the dumbass example of your logic – you’re claiming socialists are all Che Guevara’s in the making.

    Charlie Murphy – first cousin to Jim Murphy.

  177. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Salmond’s comments on Putin and “Russian pride”, etc*”

    I have no intention of going through all this idiotic shite a second time.

    The SNP took Souter’s money but then passed the equal marriage law. If we’re going to start finger-pointing about the morals of donors we’ll be in for a very tedious evening of whataboutery in which the SNP come off a lot less badly than any other party.

  178. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “And there are strong analogies between your thinking and an amoeba.”

  179. Grouse Beater says:

    Stuart: humans-share-50-dna-bananas

    🙂 That places cousin Murphy a green cooking banana.

  180. The favour to Souter I referred to was the scrapping their ideas on bus regulation. Obviously that benefits Souter a little more directly.

  181. Grouse Beater says:

    Charlie Murphy:
    “The favour to Souter I referred to was the scrapping their ideas on bus regulation”

    I believe there was a parliamentary inquiry into the issue that found no misconduct.

    And it benefitted all bus companies, including those owned by ardent Tories.

    Or are you trying to prove no supporter of, or donator to, the Tory party owns a bus or coach company?

  182. Diane says:

    We can’t possibly make decisions like this, we’re not genetically programmed!

  183. Yes, yes, they also cleared Salmond on influencing Souter’s knighthood, and of course SNP opposition to equal treatment of gay couples by Catholic adoption agencies had nothing to do with Souter, either.

    I wonder if your great faith in Parliamentary enquiries applies to Westminster as well as Holyrood? I await your considered reaction to Chilcott report, when that’s released.

  184. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Yes, yes, they also cleared Salmond on influencing Souter’s knighthood”

    Um, because he has absolutely no say in knighthoods?

  185. Grouse Beater says:

    Charlie Murphy:
    “they also cleared Salmond on influencing Souter’s knighthood”

    All Honours awards are received, scrutinized, selected, and then referred to Her Majesty by the Cabinet Office at Westminster. Salmond holds no sway over choice. In fact, ‘Salmond’ is considered a kind of stomach virus by Westminster and the Lords, you know, the Lords, the place where crooked banksters go for paid retirement and club memberships.

    If we ever meet I shall pull every hair out of your brain!

  186. Robert Peffers says:

    @Will Podmore says: 11 February, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    “The SNP ‘left of centre’?”

    Yes, Will, the answer to the above question is YES they are.

    “It is pro-EU

    Correct, … and?


    They are the party that fought on a referendum ticket to leave the UK.

    “pro-TTIP (which equals pro-US and pro-EU and pro-corporate rule).”,
    Cite please and figures.

    Under the SNP, teacher numbers, college places, and NHS bed numbers are all down.

    Again you make baseless claims with no reference to actual figures. If you are going to attempt to debate such matters it helps if you have references.

    “They promised that they would raise economic growth to the UK level, but the performance has worsened.

    Strange then that the Scottish Per Capita GDP is higher than the UK average and higher than England’s per capita GDP. Not to mention that the Scottish Employment figures are higher than those of England too. (Source of information is the UK government’s ONS).

    You remind me of a young chap I had as an apprentice a long time ago. He felt left out when we old hands were discussing football matches from the past and eventually burst out with, “The best game I ever saw was the one my Grand dad told me about”. Ergo he had never seen that match so it was hearsay. As, Will, are all your claims that come without a shred of evidence.

    “They promised that they would match the GDP growth rates of small EU countries, but the performance has worsened.

    Once more, Will, please quote both your source for your initial claim plus the source of your statistics to prove your contentions.

    ” They promised that they would improve productivity, but the performance has worsened.

    Cite please?

    “They promised that they would improve healthy life expectancy, but the performance has worsened.”

    Cite Please?

    “The SNP is bought and sold by Souter’s gold.

    So, Will, just what is your objection to Souter? Can you explain why you think it unsuitable?

    ‘Left of centre’ Ha!

    Well, old chap, they sure as hell are left of the Red, Blue and Yellow Tories in the Westminster Establishment of London.

    Now Note Well – I will no longer reply to any other posts from you that make silly claims that contain nothing more than the demented claims of an obvious liar. Back up your claims with cites and figures or be ignored.

  187. Hoss Mackintosh says:

    Yeeee Haaaw!

    That was good fun.

    The main reason I post about Political Compass is to highlight how far Labour have drifted to the right while pretending that they are a left wing, socialist party.

    The same thing has happened to the Lib-Dems as they all seem to be drifting towards “UKIP corner”.

    Will Podmore does not think Labour are a fascist party and I agree with him – the only reason I said it was to highlight the complete fallacy that the SNP are supposedly anyway close to the German Nazi party when they are a left of centre, moderate, progressive party unlike the right wing Labour Party.

    However, this did not stop the Labour Party campaigning along side the BNP and the OO.

    I note that Will did not object to my calling Labour right wing, authoritarian and neo- liberal so obviously he is happy with that which is surprising as he is a lot more left wing and libertarian than I am.

    So Will – why do you not join a real left wing party like the SSP or the Greens? Is it just because they support indy?

    The site is quite interesting in that most people and parties are in the top right and top left and lower left. There are very few libertarians in the neo-liberal bottom right quadrant. The site does discuss this a bit for the reason why.

    I suspect that most people will be a lot more left wing and more libertarian than the parties they support. The real problem with this country as highlighted by Rev Stu is that in England these people do not have mainstream parties to vote for any more.

    Fortunately in Scotland, we do!

  188. Hoss Mackintosh says:

    @Grouse Beater and Rev Stu

    Brilliant – LOL, LOL and LOL again

    Charlie Murphy and Jim Murphy MUST be related.

  189. Jon says:

    Whatever the merits or otherwise of the political compass, the parties position on it isn’t based on anyone’s questionnaire responses, they’re placed on it by whoever runs that particular website. It’s not data, it’s what some guy reckons.

    It’s OK for guys to reckon things. It’s when you dress up what you reckon or what someone else reckons as data, like for example making it into a graph and comparing graphs of what some guy reckoned at different times, that you become pseudoscientific.

  190. lumilumi says:

    OK, I had another look at the political compass thingy and realise why I’m apparently such a rampant lefty (more lefty than the SSP, ffs!).

    This political compass is calibrated at the fundamentally righty UK level of lefty/righty. For Finland, you’d have to move the vertical axis a couple of notches left. We’re not all communists but basically more lefty than Brits. Even the moderate right Finns.

    It’s of course a result of our complicated history. Without getting into details, one of the first things independent Finland did was to let established tenant farmers buy their land affordably and with state support. The manor owners and rich industrialists didn’t like it but 99% of the population did.

    Even the rightist parties got behind this idea of fairer distribution of wealth to stave off social unrest and red revolutions. Our Civil War (1918) wasn’t in vain.

  191. Dormant says:

    Please someone or someones, form a new political party that plots just where the old Labour party plotted.

    A snappy name and some good democratic, socialist values and people will flock to it.

    I’d do it myself, but I’m overseas for the foreseeable future.

    The Scottish Independent Labour Party. I’d vote for them.

  192. melvin penman says:

    Wow, I was amazed to find myself left of STU and more liberal than the greens…..

    -5.92,left;-6.13 liberal

    I think it must be my disgust of the Banksters/established parties, theft of the peoples rights,freedoms and wealth.
    together with the established parties and their supporters desire to trample there fellow citizens.

  193. Richard Lucas (@RichardLucas3) says:

    This is a perfect illustration of why ‘Scottish Labour’ have been dubbed the #RedTories. Sorry, lads and lasses, but if the cap fits……

  194. Effijy says:

    Test: What a really nice guy I turned out to be!

    That Gandhi was ruthless in comparison. lol

  195. Clootie says:

    Stop with the scores – you are making me feel like a fascist!!!

    I’m left of the SNP but apparently right of the wings median…but I know you will still tolerate me 🙁

  196. Grendel says:

    I’m pretty much where Wings is. Liberty!

  197. I like the format of this graph, but what happens when the main Westminster parties all disappear off the top right hand corner?

  198. Thepnr says:

    It shouldn’t be a surprise to find that those who contribute here and chose to remain here have much the same political views of its author.

    If you came, saw and failed to conquer, well you would go elsewhere for your entertainment.

    It just proves that, in the main, the readership of the site share the same values of the Rev and those that contribute.

    We really shouldn’t be surprised at that.

  199. K1 says:

    Yes Thepnr…we really are outside the triangle 🙂

  200. thoughtsofascot says:

    Economic Left/Right: -6.63
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -5.69

    I used to be much closer to the centre, but over the years I’ve become so disgusted by the establishment that I’ve drifted further to the left.

    What I find extremely worrying is that if you look at all the charts on the website, there is not a single party in power in all the sovereign countries charted that is outside of the upper right quarter of the graph.

    That is deeply concerning. its no wonder that the world economy is screwed. the nutcases are running things.

  201. Fearchar says:

    As far as I can see, you’re all right-wing crypto-fascists – Wings and Gandhi included! 😀

  202. thoughtsofascot says:

    I also have a feeling that practically all the people of the UK would fall in the other three quadrants of the graph. Almost no one except the aristocracy falls into the same area as the main political parties.

  203. Tim says:

    Well, that’s sort of reassuring. Last time I took that test I came out almost bang-on where the Greens are now, on top of Gandhi. Hardly surprising I joined them recently.

    I read recently that the SNP are in favour of national ID cards, so beware.

  204. big jock says:

    I had a dream last night folks. It went along the lines of the actual vote in May. The SNP won 60% of the vote!

    The BBC in Scotland were in meltdown, trying to blame Labour for everything. Rather than congratulating the SNP. They still couldn’t accept, that Scots were no longer Labour voters.

    I woke up shortly afterwards, so I can’t finish the story.

  205. Ally says:

    Whats really interesting is I took this test last year when I started getting really into the Indy Ref to see how my vote would be affected.

    6 Months down the line I’ve gone from being a Authoritarian Left to a Liberal Left. Possibly due to the social inequalities that were highlighted as part of the referendum…

    Kind of makes me wonder about who to vote for now in GE15…

  206. The Man in the Jar says:

    Im away to polish my jackboots! 🙁

  207. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

    “Whatever the merits or otherwise of the political compass, the parties position on it isn’t based on anyone’s questionnaire responses, they’re placed on it by whoever runs that particular website. It’s not data, it’s what some guy reckons.”

    The very concepts of “right wing” and “left wing” are just what some guy reckons. They have no objective meaning. Within those parameters Political Compass is as good a guide as any. Whenever anyone moans about it I simply ask “Which of their conclusions do you dispute?”

    Is it not true that since the 1980s Labour have become far more right-wing and authoritarian, as it says? Is it not true that the Lib Dems have gone in a similar direction since 2010?

    It usually goes pretty quiet at that point.

  208. a2 says:

    Actually by taking the sites test , I managed to crash it “under heavy use” though I like to think I just cconfused it 😉

  209. a2 says:

    ooft`! I didn’t think I was so extreme, being 1 and a bit blocks to the left of stu and nearly 3 below.

    Better dig out that copy of “The conquest of bread” !

  210. Brian says:

    It would be nice if we had a right wing, pro-independence, liberal party in Scotland

  211. Algernon Pondlife says:

    economic -7.88 and social -8.62
    I wondered why I was sometimes out of step with normal people. Looks like I’ll have to support a radical party in 2016.
    The Labour campaign for 2015 is very convincing. Tactical vote for SNP is the only way forward. If they can influence Westminster policies that’s a bonus. A near monopoly of Scottish seats at WM sustained for as long as it takes (but preferably not long) is the best hope for self-determination.

  212. Will Podmore says:

    Robert Peffers, when I wrote that the SNP were “anti-referendum”, I did so immediately after writing that the SNP was pro-EU, so I was obviously referring to the SNP’s opposing any possible EU referendum. So his statement of the obvious – “They are the party that fought on a referendum ticket to leave the UK” – misses the point.
    The SNP is, as I wrote, “pro-TTIP (which equals pro-US and pro-EU and pro-corporate rule).” Robert absurdly asks for figures on this – I’ll just present the evidence provided by SNP leaders praising TTIP:
    Alex Salmond described TTIP as ‘especially good news’ for Scotland. Nicola Sturgeon, on 26 February 2013, said, “the European Union and the USA announced that they would work to establish a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. The announcement was a reminder of the massive opportunities that European Union membership brings.”
    I wrote, “Under the SNP, teacher numbers, college places, and NHS bed numbers are all down.”
    Robert replied, “Again you make baseless claims with no reference to actual figures. If you are going to attempt to debate such matters it helps if you have references.” Then Robert, if you too are going to attempt to debate such matters, kindly provide the figures to refute my claims – if you can.
    Far from refuting my assertions with facts, Robert finishes with a stream of insults. Abuse is the last refuge of the loser.

  213. The Man in the Jar says:

    @Will Podmore


  214. Paula Rose says:

    Is that –

    Waffling a lot of fumbling silliness?

  215. Ann says:

    I’m with the wrong party. I’m like Wings, I’m slightly left of the Greens.

  216. Will Podmore says:

    The Man in the Jar – thank you for your intelligent attempt at refuting my claims. Oh, sorry, my mistake, you couldn’t.

  217. Will Podmore says:

    OK, Robert, I did as you suggested. Here are the figures and references.
    Government website –
    So under the SNP, teacher numbers have been cut by 3,994, from 52,446 in 2007 to 48,452 last year.
    Education body Colleges Scotland said that there were 238,805 Scottish college students in the academic year 2012-13, down from 347,336 in 2009-10. This is a cut of 108,531. Over the same period, the hours of learning delivered by colleges fell from 83.4 million to 73.7 million, a cut of 9.7 million hours, while staff numbers dropped from 20,686 to 13,761, a cut of 6,925 teaching posts.
    Hospital beds in Scotland are disappearing at a faster rate than in almost any country in the western world.
    The Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development found that Scottish hospitals have got rid of beds at a faster rate than almost anywhere else. In 2007, the average number of staffed beds available in Scotland was 27,735, or 5.2 beds per person. By 2011, there were just 24,760 or 4.67 per person, a cut of 2,975 beds. See Sunday Post, 27 April 2014.
    So, exactly as I claimed, “Under the SNP, teacher numbers, college places, and NHS bed numbers are all down.”
    Perhaps Robert will have the decency to retract his false accusation that I “make silly claims that contain nothing more than the demented claims of an obvious liar.”

  218. Jams O'Donnell says:

    “And seriously, fuck right off with the Putin bollocks.” Perfect – just perfect, Rev.

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