Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Horseshoe Effect

The horseshoe theory in political science asserts that rather than the far left and the far right being at opposite and opposing ends of a linear political continuum, they in fact closely resemble one another, much like the ends of a horseshoe. The theory is attributed to French writer Jean-Pierre Faye.[1]
A mostly reasonable piece in the NYT on the subject of abortion contains this passage:
In his 2007 Supreme Court decision upholding the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy specifically mentioned the “unexceptionable” likelihood that a woman might come to regret her choice. That women need to be protected from decisions they might feel bad about later — not that there was any evidence supporting this notion — is now a legal precedent.
Yes. The notion that women might not be capable of delivering meaningful consent — where have we heard that before? Increasingly, the left and right mirror each other's arguments, albeit on different terrain.

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