I have written many posts about how to recognize a Leftist in the wild or whom I mean by the word ‘Leftist’, but I will give a brief summation here. Because it is a brief summation, it is sadly inaccurate.
The Left is a coalition rather than an organization, by which I mean, there is no one center, no single guiding principle except their opposition God, to reason, to reality, most particularly to the realities of economics.
No one Leftist believes all parts of the Leftist doctrine because no one can or would. They pick and choose. What they are picking and choosing is which part of reality they want to deny.
Second, they are emotional rather than logical, a rude collection of feelings and moods rather than a coherent philosophy which makes statements against which one can argue. Like a squid, their thought has no shape, and, like a squid, defends itself by belching out ink clouds of obscuration.
Theologically, they are atheist and agnostic, or at least laiacist. They deny God.
In Metaphysics, they are nihilist. They deny the truth that truth exists.
In Epistemology, they are subjectivists and (ironically) empiricists. They will at the same time say that all truth is determined by scientific method and only by that, and that all truth is what you make of it.
In Ontology, they are materialists. They think the mind is an epiphenomenon, and the spirit a fairy tale.
In Logic, they are polylogists. They believe each race and level of evolution has its own logical rules, and that they rules are optional or subjective. “A is A” for you and not for me.
In Aesthetics, they are devoted to destroying the idea and ideal of beauty wheresoever found. They are both subjectivists, saying beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and vandals, saying that the purpose of art is to shock and disturb and make the world uglier, so that man will have no more taste or eye for beauty.
In Ethics, they are Gnostics. Whatever we call good, they call evil, and whatever we call evil, they call good. A bewildering variety of excuses, none of which they actually can believe, are used to explain or explain away this inversion, including the idea that men have no free will therefore no one can blame or judge another’s actions (when discussing homosex, for example) and including the idea that men are responsible not only for their actions but for symbolic and remote repercussions of their actions (when discussing racism, for example). Freud is particularly useful here, for the guilty can be declared innocent by reason of their inability to control their unconscious mind (when discussing homosex, for example) and the innocent can be declared guilty by reason of the ungood thoughts and motives of which the accused is himself unaware, albeit responsible (when discussing racism, for example).
This principle of inversion reaches every aspect of their moral code: women are most liberated when they are infertile and masculine; men when they are asexual or feminine; animals when they are given human rights; humans when they are treated like animals; children should be treated like adults; adults like children. The traditional notion of freedom as a liberation from whatever prevents you from achieving your own inner nature is overturned. Traditionally, freedom fulfills nature. In its place is the notion that freedom is liberation from your nature. For the Left, freedom destroys nature.
In Politics, they are totalitarian, recognizing no real or defined limits on legitimate government power. Some play greater or lesser lip service to certain civil rights, but these are regarded as granted by and protected by the government, revocable in the name of the greater good when convenient.
In Economics, they are socialist. Even those who are not openly communist, tacitly or actively accept the axioms and basic themes of the Marxist analysis of history as an endless Darwinian struggle between oppressor and oppressed.
In Semantics, they are Politically Correct. Words have no meaning, only utility. For them there is no difference between a right word and a wrong word, a truth or a lie, merely the authenticity (by which they mean emotional impact) of a word or phrase, and how well it serves the party.
In they psychological stance, they are sadists. Their rhetoric and the emotional images used to appeal to their base are all images of retaliation, of inflicting pain, and their argument consists of nothing but ad hominem and character assassination. They do not love ideas, like philosophers, they hate people, like misanthropists. This is all the more ironic since they claim to love people.
Even the most kindhearted Leftist I have ever met has this streak of sadism in her: she speaks of Reagan as a devil, and sneers at Palin, and I have never heard her speak a harsh word about anyone else, ever, ever.
In their psychopathology, they are suicidal. In any conflict, they side with whoever or whatever will inflict harm on their true enemy, which includes any father figure or authority figure placed over them. Where man conflicts with the environment, they side against man, and daydream about a world denuded of mankind. Where civilization confronts barbarism, they side with the barbarians, either Soviet or Jihadist.
This is a side effect of a simple strategy they have for achieving an appearance of moral righteousness without the substance: they merely side with the wrong. Why they think this makes them morally superior rather than morally retarded is a topic for another day. Sufficient for now to say this is a recurring theme.
Emotionally, they are sophomoric and infantile. They hate with a self righteous and condescending hatred anyone opposes them. The idea of chivalry, of an honest admiration for a rival, is alien to them. Everything is a crisis. Everything is a crusade.
They do not disagree. They abhor. They do not argue against. They shriek. When not shrieking, they sneer. Condescension is their central leitmotif.
In sum, the Left has toppled God from His throne and erected Caesar in His place. They are state-worshipers.
Again, not every Leftist believes all these points for no one could. Each accepts several and is at least neutral toward the rest.