Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Politics is like razors: Two dimensions, not one

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The common understanding when I resumed shaving with a DE razor over a decade ago was that razors ranged from “mild” at one extreme to “aggressive” at the other, and thus razors could be linearly ordered on this dimension. Some attempted to map razors on real numbers to simplify the ordering, since it is trivially easy to order numbers. Blade gap was the number most commonly used, as I recall.

It took me a few years, but I finally had to recognize the truth of my own experience: razors range from “mild” to “aggressive” with respect to comfort, but they also range from “mild” to “aggressive” independently with respect to efficiency. The ideal razor is one that is “mild” wrt comfort and “aggressive” wrt to performance, and I have a fair number of them since those are the razors I tend to keep.

Some thing with politics. We are constantly pushed toward a linear ordering from extreme liberal at one end and extreme conservative at the other. But, as explained on this page, that doesn’t match what our experience. It’s better to view your political stance on two dimensions: economic issues and social/cultural issues. The site takes an interesting look at the recent election from the viewpoint of their “political compass.”

They offer a little quiz for you to see how you rank, and they swear that “it’s entirely anonymous and your responses are not logged.” I just took the test—it’s quick and easy—and my results are pretty much what you would expect from reading this blog:



Written by LeisureGuy

15 February 2017 at 9:43 am

Posted in Politics

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