Liberal quotient

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Liberal quotient is a new term coined by Conservapedia to quantify how liberal a group is. It is useful in assessing political bias and in evaluating statements or positions by such a group.

The liberal quotient is defined simply as the ratio of liberals to conservatives in a group. Thus the liberal quotient is zero when there are no liberals in the group.

Mathematically Expressed When X is the number of liberals and Y is the number of conservatives and Z is the the quotient:


Therefore a group with 2 liberals and 2 conservatives has a liberal quotient of 1 (2/2=1).

Likewise, Wikipedia, which has an estimated Liberal Quotient of 3, meaning there are roughly 3 liberals on Wikipedia for every conservative (based on self-identification by some editors). The American public has a liberal quotient of 1/2 (based on polls).

Groups having a high liberal quotient would include university faculties, the National Education Association, the leadership of the Democratic Party, the management of the Village Voice and New York Times, and the leaders of the ACLU. Groups having a low liberal quotient would include a trade association of small business owners, an association of Christian athletes, and worshipers at church on an ordinary Sunday.

Comparison to Other Metrics

While some liberals oppose any measurement of their influence, others have proposed different metrics. One alternative proposal of a liberal quotient is the percentage of liberals in a population or group:

X/(X+Y) = Z

This metric, however, limits itself to a range between 0 and 1. It also fails to distinguish between conservatives and moderates. For example, this metric yields the same result if there were 50 liberals and 50 moderates as if there were 50 liberals and 50 conservatives, even though the two groups have very different political biases.

The formulation LQ = L/(L+C) has also been proposed - the Liberal quotient is the ratio of self identified liberals to the sum of self identified liberals and conservatives. This yields a range from 0 to 1, and is not affected by moderates or the unidentified. But by constraining the quotient to a scale of 0 to 1, it understates a large increase in liberal control. A group having 9 liberals and just one conservative would have a liberal quotient of 0.9, while a group having 99 liberals and only one conservative would have a liberal quotient of only 0.99. Increasing the liberal control eleven-fold would result in only a 10% increase in this quotient, so it is easy to see why liberals would support this metric. This frustrates conservatives who want to exaggerate anything "liberal". By the same token, conservative domination is reduced, in the formulation applied by its creator, to a range from 1 to zero. The proponents of the LQ=L/(L+C) metric claim that it is "fair and balanced".