Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Morality Quiz

I thought this post over at Classical Values was interesting. For starters, I too dislike the Left/Right dichotomy. There are a great many of us who have no desire to impose our wills upon other people and we do not fall anywhere on that spectrum. I am also wary of such polls, mostly because it is difficult to truly define what is being asked, but the folks at the YourMorals did a fairly good job in the Fairness Scenarios. The above graph shows my results (in green) compared to self styled liberals and conservatives. The five categories are defined as:

* Procedural Justice - Fairness is a function of how a decision is made rather than the outcome.
* Equality - Fairness is a function of how equally people are treated.
* Need - Fairness is a function of those who are in need having their needs met.
* Equity - Fairness is a function of people who contribute more getting their just reward.
* Retributional Justice - Fairness is a function of people being punished for bad behavior.

The questions asked relate pretty well to the qualities being measured, though in reality situations would be far more complex, but this does at least find which issues we consider important. My three highest outcomes highlight what I have stressed in my political philosophy: what people "deserve" is a function of their actions and results should be decided by a fair process rather than by a predetermined preferred outcome.

But look at my results compared to liberals and conservatives. Hard to place where I am on the Left/Right spectrum, huh?

As for the other tests, I've only taken a few but none were as good as the test I mentioned above. Too many ask questions that can't be answered without context. Right now, I'm trying to figure out how to answer whether "whether or not some people were treated differently than others" is relevant to my moral decisions. Depends on the situation, sometimes people should be treated differently, sometimes not, see the above chart. The next few questions are also nearly impossible to answer without context (rebelling against authority is good if the authority is evil but bad if the authority is good, so how I can't tell whether rebelling in and of itself is good or bad). Ok, the Morals, Values, and Ethics quiz is not worth taking, I do not value a person's aptitude in math when considering their moral actions. This is an example of a test badly done because we have no idea what they are asking.

Anyway, that one particular test seemed to be of value in determining how we think groups ought to distribute resources. Government is the ultimate group. I would like to know how some self described liberals, conservatives, socialists, libertarians, whathaveyou, come up with.

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