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I was reading this transcript and I couldn't achieve to understand the end of the following extract:

Beavan kept a blog of his experience by powering his laptop with a solar cell, and when it first got traction, there was a lot of hate. Not from the Right, but from the Left. [And then, the author is quoting some hateful words people have said to Beaven]

Obviously here the meaning of "left" and "right" isn't about directions.

I feel like they are actually designating some groups of people. So I am wondering if they were about political parties, like in the French language. But it doesn't make sense for me either, as I don't think that people of a political affiliation has more reasons to criticize Beaven's work than the other. Futhermore, it seems even more confusing to me that conservative and reactionary people have fewer things to say against a suggestion of a quite radical change in favour of environment, than the revolutionary ones. Or perhaps does the author kind of insist, because it is so surprising? Anyway, the rest of the transcript seems, not to talk anymore about political colours of people, so this short and single mention of this topic seems weird to me.

Indeed I checked definitions of right and left in a dictionnary, but I didn't find anything that has enlightened me. Meanings were mostly either about politics, directions, or about "being right", If I read them well.

Therefore, did I miss another meaning of "from the right" and "from the left" ?

  • No, it's political. Lefty loosy, righty tighty. It is referring in broad terms to political "leanings". – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jul 9 '16 at 10:26
  • @TRomano ; A small research has made me learn that "Lefty loosy, righty tighty" is a mnemonic which reminds how to manipulate screws. Does it have a meaning in politics too ? Also, By "learnings", do you mean "opinions" ? – Lorèloi Jul 9 '16 at 10:59
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The Right = conservatives, the Left = liberals.

... perhaps does the author kind of insist, because it is so surprising?

That's it exactly. On would expect that someone who sought to live a thoroughly Green lifestyle to be attacked by rightists, but not by leftists. The remainder of the article explores this paradox.

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The "idiomatic" use in this case is political ideology. Right and Left being capitalized also shows this meaning.

Fu[r]thermore, it seems even more confusing to me that conservative and reactionary people have fewer things to say against a suggestion of a quite radical change in favour of environment, than the revolutionary ones.

The transcript says "Not from the Right, but from the Left", meaning one would expect the "hate" to come from the Right, but it was actually coming from the opposite direction.

  • So, you are saying that I was right to interpret it in political terms, but I have just not trusted this interpretation ? Well... ok. ^^' (Thanks anymay.) – Lorèloi Jul 9 '16 at 10:48
  • eques makes a good point about the capitalization. It means that these words should be interpreted like proper names, not literally. That is, not literally from the right-hand side or left-hand side, but from the things we conventionally call "Right" or "Left". – stangdon Jul 9 '16 at 11:14

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