Originally Posted by Yachtzee
You could have a spectrum based on political freedom where free and open democracy stands at one end and totalitarian undemocratic systems stand at the other. In that spectrum, you'd have the Communists and the Fascists sitting at the undemocratic end for their undemocratic single-party rule, just shy of absolute monarchies and despotism, where no voting takes place at all, diametrically opposed to a liberal democracy where voting takes place often and there are no barriers for entry for particiption.
The problem with the above is that it heavily biased. It says, in essense, American-style liberal capitalism is the definition of "free", so everything else comes up short. It's like me saying the definition of handsome is to be Rojo-like and then crowning myself Mr. Redszone.
A critic might point out that elections aren't really that democratic if big money vets candidates before deciding which of the two we can vote for. Or that, as FDR said, a necessitous man isn't a free man. Or that our workplaces are autocracies. Or that the government enforces a private property police state that enriches a few. I could go on.
My spectrum would move from elite control (right) to popular control (left). While most Communist regime became elite control states, communism as an ideology sits on the far left because everything -- politics and economics -- is controlled by the people.
But fascism, in theory and action, sits on the far right.