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The Swiss Political Compass

Libertarians close to UP Schweiz (Swiss independent party) ridiculed the Green Liberal Party, GLP and the Pirate Party as being in favor of the state and left-wing, hence not libertarian. George Dorgan suggests that both GLP and the Pirate Pirate are pretty close to UP, hence all three are libertarian parties. He thinks that the discussion if one is “Left” or “Right” needs to be left out completely, when we speak about liberty.

In several Facebook discussions (here, here and here), Swiss Libertarians suggested that both the Swiss Pirate Party and the Swiss Green Liberals (GLP) were not a nice alternative because they were not libertarian and too much “left”.

 

I think that the discussion if one is “Left” or “Right” is rather the question

  • if the state must redistribute some income from rich to poor – the so-called “left” in the sense of this political spectrum – or
  • if the individual is free to choose if he/she gives for example 10% of his income to the poor. Some might give 5%, some generous people 20%. This is the old Christian  idea that got replaced by state-enforced redistribution of income.

To my view, the discussion if the state must intervene against a degradation of our environment is Not contained in the political compass, it is essentially a third dimension. The GLP is in favor of pro-environment state intervention, the Pirate Party and UP Schweiz are rather against it. The following table gives a first overview:

 Dimension1: "Social" Left-RightDimension2: Authoritarian-LibertarianDimension3: Pro-environment intervention
GLPCenterLibertarianPro environment intervention
UP SchweizRightLibertarianAgainst
Pirate PartyCenterLibertarianUndecided
GreensLeft (social state intervention)CenterPro environment intervention
All of FDP, SVP, BDP. CVPRightAuthoritarianAgainst (CVP a bit less)
SPLeft (social state intervention)CenterPro environment intervention

Obviously all government parties are authoritarian parties, apart from the SP.

The Swiss UP! was supposed to be neither left nor right. It has libertarian ideas. Hence it is situated in the bottom area, completely opposed to authoritarian ideas.  However, the political spectrum above and many arguments from the opponents suggest that the party is “right-wing”. The reason might be that UP-Schweiz is a spin-off of the right wing and authoritarian parties FDP and SVP.

Please help to match the initial “libertarian” ideas against the GLP or the Pirate Party. I have not done it yet. The following table gives an overview of the UP Schweiz! program, template for matching against GLP and Pirate Party. It also brings more light to the difference between libertarians and authoritarians.

UP program in comparisonUP SchweizGLPPirate PartySP
Against state and re-distribution
Dismantling of the power of the state.Yes
Fewer and simpler taxesYes
Stronger tax competitionYes
Reduction of debtYes
Reduction of social servicesYes
Reduction of public distribution Yes
Gradual replacement of AHVYes
Freedom
Independent and neutral SwitzerlandYes
No Swiss entry in EU or NATOYes
Unilateral introduction of free tradeYes
Free MigrationYes
Privatisation of asylum systemYes
Self-determined life
Legalisation of drugsYes
No bans on games, gambling...Yes
Easy access to euthanasiaYes
Stop of universal military conscriptionYes
No taxes for promotion of cultureYes

P.S. Hope somebody has encountered a slight contradiction in this post on the UP program and on the definition of liberty.

References:

The German version of the UP! Program is available here.

The link to the UP!-Schweiz Website.

Up-Schweiz on Facebook.

George Dorgan
George Dorgan (penname) predicted the end of the EUR/CHF peg at the CFA Society and at many occasions on SeekingAlpha.com and on this blog. Several Swiss and international financial advisors support the site. These firms aim to deliver independent advice from the often misleading mainstream of banks and asset managers. George is FinTech entrepreneur, financial author and alternative economist. He speak seven languages fluently.
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