"Historic/Traditional SDA's Vs. Progressive SDA's General
Differences." Historic/Traditionalist Seventh-Day Adventists are critical of using labels, too.
Sample: "Declaring a person liberal or conservative is counterproductive if the person being so labeled does not agree with the label. So the generalization of a label must not be used carelessly. If the label used is meant to damage a
person's reputation that label is most likely being misused. "
"Haider: son of Nazis who defies labels."
Kate Connolly of The Guardian writes in February 2000 about how difficult it is to categorize Austrian political star Jorg
Haider, who usually is labeled "far right." There is also a link called "The issue explained: the far-right in Austria," which outlines the positions that allegedly comprise the "far right" in Austria.
"Attempts to label the politician who changes his opinions as regularly as his designer suits almost always fail."
"Liberal and conservative are useful concepts, not
labels." A 1996 letter to the editor of The Arizona Star by Peter
Sample: "Frequent intelligent use of the word "liberal" in political debate has produced and is producing a salutory effect on people who have espoused it. When the word appears in print, the true believers go into defensive mode, which is itself a good cure for their past hubris."
"I don't like the words Down Syndrome. Why don't we call it Gorgeous
Syndrome?" Labeling people applies to people with physical or mental disabilities as well. This question is addressed by Western Australian Museum and the Down Syndrome Associate of
W.A. in a site called "Down Syndrome: Beyond the Myths."
Sample: "Using labels which are acceptable to the people so
labeled can be sneered at as 'political correctness', but names and labels can shape people's lives, for better or worse."
"The Mischief of
Labels." Economist and columnist Thomas Sowell wrote on Sept. 23, 1997 about how "the mischief of political labels was shown recently in a media interview with former 'Today Show' host Bryant
Sample: "The difference between what are today called liberals and conservatives has nothing to do with whether or not you "care" for other people ... There are different opinions on what will make things better or worse ... If we are going to have any serious discussion of serious issues, then we need to get into the actual substance of the pros and cons, not take sloppy labels at face value."
Religion." Raymond L. Zarling, a professor of computer science at California State University, offers his views on various subjects, including politics and religion.
Sample: "I dislike labels ... and much of politics and religion is about labels."
"J.R. Labbe's Address to the NRA Media
Seminar." J.R. (Jill) Labbe, senior editorial writer for the Ft. Worth Telegram, spoke at a National Rifle Association media seminar on May 21, 2000 on the perceived bias against gun owners in the national media.
Sample: "The tendency in this country to put labels on everything from people to political philosophies does a disservice to the individuality that is the strength of this nation. 'Liberal media conspiracy,' 'right-wing conservative,' 'dumb blonde' and 'gun nut' are among the phrases that need to be erased from the daily language."
"A Note on Labels: Why
"Libertarian"? In Chapter 1 of his book "Libertarianism," author David Boaz explains how the word "libertarian" came to be and why it is a useful political label.
Sample: "Some people say they don't like labels. ... But labels serve purposes; they help us to conceptualize, they economize on words, and if our beliefs are coherent and consistent there probably is a label to describe them. In any case, if you don't label your own philosophy or movement, someone else will label it for you."
"Politics and the English
Language." The famous George Orwell wrote in 1946 that "one ought to recognize that the present political chaos is connected with the decay of language, and that one can probably bring about some improvement by starting at the verbal end."
"In certain kinds of writing, particularly in art criticism and literary criticism, it is normal to come across long passages which are almost completely lacking in meaning. ... Many political words are similarly abused."
"The Left's 'Silver
Lining." Three months after the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, D.C. that killed thousands of people, columnists Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair lamented that many so-called "liberals" and "progressives" were using the event to promote confidence in Big Government, leaving only a "thin red line of anti-imperial leftists," "libertarians" and certain "conservatives" to be the voice of
conscience against the rise of militarism and threats to civil liberties.
"We've always said that the true contours of American politics are in no way reflected by the conventional political maps. The post-Sept. 11 events have confirmed that analysis with acid clarity. "
Compass." A group called One World Action presents a quiz that presumably allows the quiz taker to place
themselves on the "political compass." The test and subsequent analysis of the responses is similar to the "World's smallest political quiz" offered by the Advocates for Self-Government.
Sample: "On the standard left-right scale, how do you distinguish leftists like Stalin and Gandhi? It's not sufficient to say that Stalin was simply more left than Gandhi. There are fundamental political differences between them that the old categories on their own can't explain. Similarly, we generally describe social reactionaries as 'right-wingers', yet that leaves left-wing reactionaries like Robert Mugabe and Pol Pot off the hook."
"Lobotomies, Socialist and Capitalist
A gossipy journey from left to right." Jesse Walker, an associate editor of Reason magazine, reviews historian Ronald Radosh's book "Commies: A Journey Through the New Left, the Old Left, and the Leftover Left."
Sample: "Ronald Radosh is an academic historian, author of several respectable (if not always respected) books on the critics, allies, and enemies of American foreign policy. He is also a former leftist who has joined the political right. The second description, in itself, tells us little: There are many lefts and many rights, especially now that the events of 1989 have turned the political spectrum into a Jackson Pollock painting. Once the world gets turned upside down, you never know where the people who once sat securely atop it will fall."