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Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 07:26 AM Jul 2013

Are you a right-wing authoritarian? Take the test today!

Last edited Sat Jul 6, 2013, 05:08 PM - Edit history (2)

Bob Altemeyer in his book The Authoritarians shares a 22 question test he uses to determines someone's approximate level on the Right-Wing Authoritarian scale. The scoring is a little complex, but it makes for the best way to take the test and then measure the score.

However, after trying to write it out here and make it understandable, I thought to do a search and see if someone has automated the process. They have! The link is here.

http://helloquizzy.okcupid.com/tests/the-altemeyer-authoritarian-test

One very important instruction is about having different feelings about different parts of the same sentence. Altemeyer asks that you score each part separately and then add those numbers together to get your final answer for the statement.

This website doesn't give the score on the same scale as Altemeyer, though. It does it by percentages. My answer, for example, ranked me as 18% Authoritarian, which is rather low compared to the rest of the country. Although I'm sure I'll be one of the higher scores here at DU!

But I truly believe that almost everyone here at DU will hit around my score or lower. And that's why I offer the test - just to see where DU tends to rank. You don't have to share your exact score, or even at all. Altemeyer points out that people tend to overvalue scores like this. But I hope a few will, so we can find a general range. And I'd be surprised to find anyone here who hits above 20% at all.

(A note about the quiz site. I was able to get my score without signing up for anything. You can, too.)

ETA: Just a note for those who find the test simplistic, dumb, etc. Altemeyer addresses these kinds of questions in his book "The Authoritarians." Here's the link to the PDF:

http://members.shaw.ca/jeanaltemeyer/drbob/TheAuthoritarians.pdf

But a couple of things: the statements had to be unambiguous to make the cut. If the statements were more subtle or ambiguous, then responses would be all over the map. And the statements are designed to test for authoritarianism, not conservatism. It's not so much the beliefs you hold that make you authoritarian, whether conservative or liberal. It's how far you think you can enforce your personal or societal beliefs on other people. You could, for example, believe that polygamy was a sin but if others wished to engage in it, it was none of your business. That's a conservative view, but not an authoritarian one.

Also, Altemeyer is using the term "right" in "right wing authoritarian" in a non-political sense. It's not conservative, right wing politics he's after, but the notion of being correct. From the PDF, "I’m using the word “right” in one of its earliest meanings, for in
Old English “riht”(pronounced “writ”) as an adjective meant lawful, proper, correct, doing what the authorities said."

69 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Are you a right-wing authoritarian? Take the test today! (Original Post) Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 OP
Hit Thirteen, Sir The Magistrate Jul 2013 #1
I agree. They were sort of ... LisaLynne Jul 2013 #5
The Phrase 'Laying It On With A Trowel' Came To Mind, Ma'am The Magistrate Jul 2013 #6
Ha, yes. LisaLynne Jul 2013 #10
The questions Altemeyer developed over a long while Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #7
Just Because People Take A Long Time Over Something, Sir The Magistrate Jul 2013 #9
There were 2 I had a problem with Mojorabbit Jul 2013 #11
You are still in the lower 25% of possible scores Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #13
I hit 13 too...Not quite sure what to think...LOL.. monmouth3 Jul 2013 #21
0% Authoritarian, but I knew that anyway idwiyo Jul 2013 #2
3% Spider Jerusalem Jul 2013 #3
0% and proud of it. hobbit709 Jul 2013 #4
Got an 11 newfie11 Jul 2013 #8
3%.... Lately, I suspect our "bell curve" would be severely shifted towards the authoritarian side.. hlthe2b Jul 2013 #12
Gawd. Such drivel. Buzz Clik Jul 2013 #14
I'll put you down for a 0% then. Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #15
LOL! Buzz Clik Jul 2013 #16
Wow. What goofy questions. HappyMe Jul 2013 #17
Surprise. 99Forever Jul 2013 #18
I had to stop after the 2nd question... Bay Boy Jul 2013 #19
I'm a zero hero! Arctic Dave Jul 2013 #20
So you don't think the government should reign in the KKK ecstatic Jul 2013 #30
The 1st Amendment is for people I don't agree with also. Arctic Dave Jul 2013 #31
Unfortunately, they do more than just speak ecstatic Jul 2013 #32
So do politicians. Arctic Dave Jul 2013 #35
7% giftedgirl77 Jul 2013 #22
Who are you to tell me to take a test? You're not the boss of me! pinboy3niner Jul 2013 #23
Bwah-HAH (as usual) to you!1 I got a THIRTEEN, take THAT those calling me that!1 UTUSN Jul 2013 #51
Oh, yes, the spelling errors. Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #56
25%, though I strongly agreed with all of the positives that I thought were most important. AverageJoe90 Jul 2013 #24
Screw that shit... pipi_k Jul 2013 #25
lol usGovOwesUs3Trillion Jul 2013 #49
2% LuvNewcastle Jul 2013 #26
4%. nt ecstatic Jul 2013 #27
13 percent life long demo Jul 2013 #28
6% Not too hard to tell where that test is going though. nt rrneck Jul 2013 #29
Only 7% authoritarian. Wish it had been zero, lol. kestrel91316 Jul 2013 #33
Test is slanted very much to the left. Not much wiggle room demosincebirth Jul 2013 #34
There's lots of wriggle room with nine possible answers. Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #47
I LOVE these internet barometers! OilemFirchen Jul 2013 #36
0% Authoritarian. brewens Jul 2013 #37
You got a zero? Motown_Johnny Jul 2013 #40
There must not be a zero percent Motown_Johnny Jul 2013 #38
I won't take your authoritarian test olddots Jul 2013 #39
YOU MUST! Motown_Johnny Jul 2013 #41
So far my 18% is the highest score which I expected Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #42
4% treestar Jul 2013 #43
Yeah, those conclusions don't come from Altemeyer. Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #46
0% Tierra_y_Libertad Jul 2013 #44
1% Authoritarian ohheckyeah Jul 2013 #45
9% authoritarian, 91% cotton/polyester blend. nt nyquil_man Jul 2013 #48
This message was self-deleted by its author LumosMaxima Jul 2013 #50
4% TheKentuckian Jul 2013 #52
16% peacebird Jul 2013 #53
a 5%er villager Jul 2013 #54
Dumb ass quiz. hunter Jul 2013 #55
Dumb quiz because it wanted all that info from me at the end. RebelOne Jul 2013 #58
I didn't have to give my email address. Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #59
Fun quizz LostOne4Ever Jul 2013 #57
Ha! 4% authoritarian Trailrider1951 Jul 2013 #60
i got a 65% BOG PERSON Jul 2013 #61
Oh, well, I guess! Bolo Boffin Jul 2013 #62
10%er. That must be the 10% my European friends see. n/t Egalitarian Thug Jul 2013 #64
4% cyberswede Jul 2013 #63
2% magellan Jul 2013 #65
I scored 4% MrScorpio Jul 2013 #66
4% MNBrewer Jul 2013 #67
lose the "right-wing" reference patskelley Jan 2016 #68
Welcome to DU. What do you mean by "left-wing aauthoritarianism"? uppityperson Jan 2016 #69

The Magistrate

(95,237 posts)
6. The Phrase 'Laying It On With A Trowel' Came To Mind, Ma'am
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 08:02 AM
Jul 2013

I expect most of my score came from not considering protesters, as a general rule, to be much more reliable than anyone else. I do not consider that to indicate authoritarian outlook, but rather awareness of the human creature. I have been at many protests in my time; a lot of the people I was alongside were idiots and ignorant.

LisaLynne

(14,554 posts)
10. Ha, yes.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 08:18 AM
Jul 2013

Also, I am not entirely opposed to leaders in movements. There was at least one question where I thought, "Well, if we're talking about Gandhi or Martin Luther King, then, yes, it would be nice to have someone like that to lead a movement."

Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
7. The questions Altemeyer developed over a long while
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 08:11 AM
Jul 2013

And there was one I thought needs to be changed. I'll look them over again later.

hlthe2b

(101,337 posts)
12. 3%.... Lately, I suspect our "bell curve" would be severely shifted towards the authoritarian side..
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 08:22 AM
Jul 2013

It has been very eye opening around here lately...(and not in a particularly good way)...

That said, this test's set of questions was pretty contrived, but in very broad strokes is probably good at differentiating the extremes.

 

Buzz Clik

(38,437 posts)
14. Gawd. Such drivel.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 08:31 AM
Jul 2013

"Please respond to the following series of extreme hyperbole. Forgive us; subtlety is not one of our gifts."

I really loved how each question was numbered twice.

"Beta"? No. Draft. Start over.

Bay Boy

(1,689 posts)
19. I had to stop after the 2nd question...
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 08:54 AM
Jul 2013

..." Women should have to promise to obey their husbands when they get married."

I strongly agreed and my wife socked me in the arm so hard I fell off my chair.

ecstatic

(32,439 posts)
30. So you don't think the government should reign in the KKK
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 10:06 AM
Jul 2013

and similar hate groups?

There are many radical, immoral people in our country today, who are trying to ruin it for their own godless purposes, whom the authorities should put out of action.

To me, radical immoral people = Tea party, Fox News, Koch Brothers, KKK, etc.

UTUSN

(70,296 posts)
51. Bwah-HAH (as usual) to you!1 I got a THIRTEEN, take THAT those calling me that!1
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 04:24 PM
Jul 2013

Whoever keyed-in the website has some spelling or keying problems!1 I will be posting my results in all the SNOWDEN/GREENWALD threads name-calling, "AUTHORITARIAN!1"

*********QUOTE********

Your result for The Altemeyer Authoritarian Test ...

[font size=5]13% Authoritarian![/font]

You scored 13% Authoritarian.

[font size=5]A Low Score[/font]

You are skeptial(sic) of or don’t trust the authorities.

On a jury you would take mitigating circumstances into account when determining a sentance(sic).

You are less aggressive.

You are less likley(sic) to join a military service.

You are less likley(sic) to care about “fitting in” with others.

You are less likley(sic) to belong to a fundamentalist religion.

***********UNQUOTE**********

Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
56. Oh, yes, the spelling errors.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 05:04 PM
Jul 2013

Someone copied the questions into some form (hence the double numbering of the questions) and then threw out those inane conclusions. Altemeyer would never have made those kind of statements about low or high individual scores.

pipi_k

(21,020 posts)
25. Screw that shit...
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 09:46 AM
Jul 2013

I did the test, then entered the characters (proving I'm a human) FIVE times, each time being told I had done it incorrectly.

Then I switched to audio and got what sounded like HAL9000 at the end of his life, with static mixed in. IOW, totally inaudible.

fuck it.

LuvNewcastle

(16,807 posts)
26. 2%
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 09:50 AM
Jul 2013

A test like this should take a little time, requiring some thought. These questions were way too obvious, I thought. Life is much more tricky than that.

Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
47. There's lots of wriggle room with nine possible answers.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 03:55 PM
Jul 2013

Especially when you can break a statement into parts, score them separately, and then add for the final answer.

OilemFirchen

(7,141 posts)
36. I LOVE these internet barometers!
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 10:39 AM
Jul 2013

So extremely well designed, with carefully worded questions, no preconceived outcomes and absolute scientific precision!

FTR, I scored "well trimmed mustache", though I'll admit I cheated a bit.

brewens

(13,236 posts)
37. 0% Authoritarian.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 10:48 AM
Jul 2013

The leader who would crush evil and take us back to our true path question could mean different things to different people. If it meant what I consider to be evil and what I believe is our true path, I could be somewhat in favor of that.

Same with the old fashioned way and values question. I have a different idea of what old fashioned ways and values should be. Like people being paid fairly for working hard.

 

Motown_Johnny

(22,308 posts)
40. You got a zero?
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 10:55 AM
Jul 2013

I thought I would get a zero but it gave me 1%


Maybe I misclicked and hit a +/- 3 somewhere that I meant to hit a 4

 

Motown_Johnny

(22,308 posts)
38. There must not be a zero percent
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 10:52 AM
Jul 2013

I answered everything either -4 or +4 and it still gave me a 1% authoritarian. I also still scored higher than 15% of my peers. That makes no sense at all.

Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
42. So far my 18% is the highest score which I expected
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 03:26 PM
Jul 2013

I think some of the 0%ers could agree with a bit more than they say. None of them believe we need any leader at all? Or that their job isn't at least to suggest the right path for our society to follow? But no matter. They still wouldn't be that high on the scale, and we can always overvalue individual results. I hope it has been fun for those who took the test.

But in the aggregate, my point has been made. There are no High-RWA types here at DU. This is a Low-RWA population. There are people higher on the scale than others. But of the people reporting scores, none of us got within spitting distance of 25%, not even me.

treestar

(82,383 posts)
43. 4%
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 03:36 PM
Jul 2013

A Low Score

You are skeptial of or don't trust the authorities.

On a jury you would take mitigating circumstances into account when determining a sentance.

You are less aggressive.

You are less likley to join a military service.

You are less likley to care about "fitting in" with others.

You are less likley to belong to a fundamentalist religion.

ohheckyeah

(9,314 posts)
45. 1% Authoritarian
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 03:45 PM
Jul 2013


You scored 1% Authoritarian.

A Low Score

You are skeptical of or don't trust the authorities. (true)

On a jury you would take mitigating circumstances into account when determining a sentence. (true)

You are less aggressive. (true)

You are less likely to join a military service. (not less likely, would never happen)

You are less likely to care about "fitting in" with others. (never did and still don't)

You are less likely to belong to a fundamentalist religion. (true that)

Response to Bolo Boffin (Original post)

 

villager

(26,001 posts)
54. a 5%er
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 04:36 PM
Jul 2013

Mostly, I think, because I was neutral on a question about the "old ways." It didn't specify which "old ways" might be better. Native American ones? Off-the-grid ones? Old 4th-Amendment-intact ones? Etc.

Sometimes, a return to the old ways can be exactly what we need.

But who's specifying which "ways?"

hunter

(38,217 posts)
55. Dumb ass quiz.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 04:39 PM
Jul 2013

0% Authoritarian

All plus and minus four, the mark of a feral autistic spectrum human, raised by wolves.

I've never followed anyone who is not making sense, and I've been well taught what is fair and just.

Fuck everything else. It's an attitude that has got me into big trouble a few times...

Funny thing is, my parents were EXTREMELY hard ass about certain things and my kids, who have grown up to be excellent human beings, will tell you the exact same thing. Don't sass the teacher who has high expectations. Always be kind and nurturing to small children and animals. Love your neighbor. And yes, you must stay buckled in your car seat. No temper tantrums. And teens, if you are going to have sex, here's how to do it safely.

But even if you mess up, we're always here for you.

"Respecting Authority" has never been anywhere on that list. Avoiding unnecessary trouble with "authority," sure, that's generally a good idea, I tried to teach my kids that. But it's something my wolf-mom has never been good at. We once had to leave Franco's Spain in the middle of the night for France. I've also seen my mom fight with cops, school administrators, Catholic Bishops, and anyone else who has offended her sense of justice. I've learned by her bad example to avoid certain kinds of troubles, at least here in the modern U.S.A.

But things could change and we might have to walk away...

Rational first, blindly following "authority," NEVER.




RebelOne

(30,947 posts)
58. Dumb quiz because it wanted all that info from me at the end.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 05:20 PM
Jul 2013

I just left it. I don't want to give my e-mail address.

Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
59. I didn't have to give my email address.
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 05:24 PM
Jul 2013

That was under the "save" option or the "introduce me to others like me" option. I gave age and sex, that was about it.

Bolo Boffin

(23,796 posts)
62. Oh, well, I guess!
Sat Jul 6, 2013, 10:09 PM
Jul 2013

Altemeyer generally puts people at 75% and above in the High-RWA category (but again, individual results shouldn't be overvalued). But you certainly have scored higher on the scale than everyone else who have reported their scores.

patskelley

(1 post)
68. lose the "right-wing" reference
Wed Jan 20, 2016, 03:01 PM
Jan 2016

Go fight City Hall then tell me about right-wing authoritarianism - left-wing authoritarianism can be equally vile. Test was biased and questions leading, but am relieved to learn my authoritarianism level is fairly low - although my children and spouse will undoubtedly disagree.

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