UKC

/ Jordan Peterson interview (Part 2)

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Jonny on 03 Feb 2018

I don't know how archiving works here, but the thread with this title has been archived after just two weeks in existence, and lots of activity. Perhaps it was the OP.

Anyway, the discussion was too good, and too productive, to come to to such an abrupt end. Let's continue it here.

2
Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Thanks Jonny, beat me too it. Could you copy and paste this into your post so that it is available for reference at the top of the page?

https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/culture_bunker/jordan_peterson_interview-677912

 

 

In reply to cb294

:> I think there have been plenty of disagreements on differences of emphasis. And those disagreements, which may seem pretty minor in the grand scheme of things, are probably reflected in our living fairly different lives, and having different temperaments and values.

I think this impression of consensus, and the warm sense of being in this together, is the natural product of respectful debate in which people are sincere in the points they make, and give the benefit of the doubt to the ultimate motives of others. If Ms Newman could only modify her style a bit, she could join us in this contructive and optimistic mood, I'm sure of it!

I don't really want to follow this tangent and I don't mean this in any derogatory way, but do you think you may be somewhat viewing this from your 'ivory tower'?

I am the product of a broken working-class family and have also suffered from the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune", perhaps as a result? I am at the 'coal face' if you like and, to an extent, have probably had very different life experiences to you. Just as I feel I must consider where I am and how I got here, I think everyone should do that.

Watch this, if you haven't already:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwK0jeJ8wxg

As Mark Blyth says, "… I like to say to my American hedge fund friends, The Hamptons are not a defensible position. The Hamptons are a very rich area on Long Island that lie along low-lying beaches. Very hard to defend a low-lying beach. Eventually people will come for you." I feel I am in the 30% of people that he feels politicians think are just there to be policed and if I think there is no other choice, I will be one of those running up the beach and no one really wants that. I know this about finances, but I feel it could be equally applied to some of the issues in this debate. Therefore, if I also feel that if our society is on the verge of being irrevocably damaged, I might feel I have no other choice but to follow a similar path.

BTW, I don't mean "you" personally in the Blyth quote.

Post edited at 16:19
Jonny on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> Could you copy and paste this into your post so that it is available for reference at the top of the page?

Missed the editing window, but the link should be close enough to the top.

> In reply to cb294 (actually Jonny )

> I don't really want to follow this tangent and I don't mean this in any derogatory way, but do you think you may be somewhat viewing this from your 'ivory tower'?

> I am the product of a broken working-class family and have also suffered from the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune", perhaps as a result? I am at the 'coal face' if you like and, to an extent, have probably had very different life experiences to you. Just as I feel I must consider where I am and how I got here, I think everyone should do that.

You replied to cb294, but those were my comments. I am also in academia, but early in my career, and certainly not in any kind of ivory tower. I had a fatherless upbringing up north, perhaps not too dissimilar from your own. And that was exactly what I was trying to get at with my comments: you said there was consensus, to the point that we may even have formed an echo chamber. I think the devil of disagreement is to be found in the details of the points we've been making, and those disagreements will reflect our different life paths to a certain degree.

I was trying to say that despite that, it's a beautiful thing that we're able to discuss things civilly, and come to some degree of mutual understanding. Bridge-building at its finest, and at least a hint of how societal relations could be if we could just give the benefit of the doubt a bit more often (that's a hobby-horse of mine, you'll have noticed). A rose-tinted view, surely, but a source of optimism for me.

With respect to your Blyth quote, I think agree. Perhaps I could repost what I said at the end of the last thread about perspective, in reply to you:

> The disparity between the haves and the have nots? It's a thorny problem with no real known solution as of yet and no real justification either.

I think that's a much more important issue. As I think we can glean from cb294's proposal (without reading too much into it before he's had a chance to defend himself), changes in the domain of 'gender equality' are going to bring the biggest benefits to the thin layer of women near the top of the writhing human cake. I'd rather we focused on the chasm between the women and men who are being left behind (and to a certain degree, domesticated) and those with more influence.

Worldwide, by far the biggest boons to the lives of women are to be had by increasing wealth in the developing world.

Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Oh balls! I copied and pasted the wrong bit. It takes me so long to type that I didn't notice you'd posted prior to the original being archived and just copied the last post. What a muppet!

It should have been this:

There was a bit of a refugee problem for a few months in 2016 (e.g. when we dropped our daughter at uni in Passau there were 30.000 refugees steady state in a city of 40.000 people!), but overall we cope well. I have multiple reasons to severely dislike Merkel, but the refugee decision is not one of them! 

Post edited at 17:00
Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Just for clarity:

In reply to cb294

> There was a bit of a refugee problem for a few months in 2016 (e.g. when we dropped our daughter at uni in Passau there were 30.000 refugees steady state in a city of 40.000 people!), but overall we cope well. I have multiple reasons to severely dislike Merkel, but the refugee decision is not one of them! 

I don't really want to follow this tangent and I don't mean this in any derogatory way, but do you think you may be somewhat viewing this from your 'ivory tower'?

I am the product of a broken working-class family and have also suffered from the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune", perhaps as a result? I am at the 'coal face' if you like and, to an extent, have probably had very different life experiences to you. Just as I feel I must consider where I am and how I got here, I think everyone should do that.

Watch this, if you haven't already:

  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwK0jeJ8wxg

As Mark Blyth says, "… I like to say to my American hedge fund friends, The Hamptons are not a defensible position. The Hamptons are a very rich area on Long Island that lie along low-lying beaches. Very hard to defend a low-lying beach. Eventually people will come for you." I feel I am in the 30% of people that he feels politicians think are just there to be policed and if I think there is no other choice, I will be one of those running up the beach and no one really wants that. I know this about finances, but I feel it could be equally applied to some of the issues in this debate. Therefore, if I also feel that if our society is on the verge of being irrevocably damaged, I might feel I have no other choice but to follow a similar path.

BTW, I don't mean "you" personally in the Blyth quote.

Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

In reply to your other post from the original thread, I haven't much to add as I am in almost complete agreement, but have a couple of observations:

You are Jordan B Peterson and I claim my £5

Seriously though, and not wishing to blow smoke into dark places, you write with some real erudition and almost beauty. Have you ever thought of doing this professionally?

It will take me a long time of unpicking the mess I presently find myself in, a lot of thought and study to become who'd I like to be. I can only thank you and others for helping me along this road.

1
Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

I just think I should make a couple of things clear to you guys

If you have been reading my posts on certain other threads, I would just like to say I have been somewhat trolling in places (in a probably vain and misguided) attempt to expose what I see as a certain level of hypocrisy. Having said that, I think this is almost certainly unintentionally hypocrisy, that has been conditioned through years of being told the 'patriarchy' (whatever that is) is an evil entity, who's only intent is to suppress women's rights. No doubt an element of this is true, but I really don't see this 'patriarchy' benefitting me or many other men. That's why I rage when I hear suggestions of 'check your privilege' or 'mansplaining' or even 'whitesplaining'. For a more balanced view, perhaps I should stop listening to the more rabid commentators, such as Sargon of Akkad and concentrate on people like Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris, etc?

Oh well, the cat's out of the bag now for all to see.

In my opinion, the fact that this is on the "Culture Bunker" has 2 effects, one good, one bad. The bad one is that there appears to be very few women contributing to this debate. The good one is that some of the more rabid elements that frequent the "Off Belay" section of this forum, don't venture into this backwater and aren't ruining it.

2
Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> Worldwide, by far the biggest boons to the lives of women are to be had by increasing wealth in the developing world.

Yes, absolutely true. Richard Dawkins has stated (in debates about Islam) that the overwhelming factor in the advancement of modern civilisations has been the emancipation of women within those civilisations.

And let's face, if we don't face up to the issues in the developing world, as well as our own, "Eventually people will come for you" and to a certain extent (mass migration) this is already happening. I'm sure if there was a country in the world where I would be unbelievably better off, I'd be packing my bags right now.

Post edited at 19:14
2
Jonny on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Firstly, thanks for you kind comments, again. I certainly don't write professionally. Are you a professional generosicist?

> I just think I should make a couple of things clear to you guys

> I have been somewhat trolling in places (in a probably vain and misguided) attempt to expose what I see as a certain level of hypocrisy. Having said that, I think this is almost certainly unintentionally hypocrisy, that has been conditioned through years of being told the 'patriarchy' (whatever that is) is an evil entity, who's only intent is to suppress women's rights. No doubt an element of this is true, but I really don't see this 'patriarchy' benefitting me or many other men. That's why I rage when I hear suggestions of 'check your privilege' or 'mansplaining' or even 'whitesplaining'.

I think you're hitting on something very important. The real heroes, for me, are those who (for example) are washing old and disabled people in dingy terraced houses in some God-forsaken corner of the country. Sometimes they're spending their lives helping a relation or a friend, but equally often lots of their free time helping a complete stranger. They might well not tell anyone else they're doing this, and don't expect any benefits to their reputation out of it. There are all sorts of ethical equivalents happening all the time - small-scale heroics without an accompanying feeling of self-satisfaction (even though such a feeling would be well-deserved)

There's a yawning moral abyss (straight out of a John Martin painting) from this to the shortcut to a feeling of virtue taken by many of the activists for 'minority issues' (in quotes because these are rarely the true minorities). I see so much energy poured into schemes for gender equality but I just don't see it as a glaring moral injustice (and there are plenty of those around). I certainly hope these people won't be remembered as the Mary Wollstonecrafts of their day (although it's also quite possible that the volume and tone of their writings and recorded speech will deceive future historians about the nature of the problem they were 'fighting').

You're right that we should be charitable with respect to the intended motives - part of that charity is recognising that few of these people will have had much to do with people from social classes beyond their own. But this latter fact is a big problem, in the UK and elsewhere. The much-maligned Charles Murray has written what looks to be an interesting book on this topic, 'Coming Apart' (I haven't read it, but have heard his basic thesis. The title looks to be somewhat deceptive - it's really an issue of class, just that the white members of that class are the ones that have been left without a leg-up). Once again, I can only think that more bridge building will help us.

 
Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> Firstly, thanks for you kind comments, again. I certainly don't write professionally. Are you a professional generosicist?

Haha, hardly!

Seriously though, I can recognise talent, you have a real gift here (lucky bugger) and I think you should seriously consider it. Jordan Peterson has something on his site about essay writing, here (bottom of the page, click "You can download it here"):

http://jordanbpeterson.com/classes/self-deception/

It maybe teaching your grandmother to suck eggs given your level of education, I don't know. I'm sure there's other stuff out there.

Now, I'll ruminate on your post whilst I go for a fag ( oh shit, I can't say that can I?), Bend Over! (oh shit, I can't say that either!)

1
Rock The Lobster - on 03 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> I think you're hitting on something very important. The real heroes, for me, are those who (for example) are washing old and disabled people in dingy terraced houses in some God-forsaken corner of the country. Sometimes they're spending their lives helping a relation or a friend, but equally often lots of their free time helping a complete stranger. They might well not tell anyone else they're doing this, and don't expect any benefits to their reputation out of it. There are all sorts of ethical equivalents happening all the time - small-scale heroics without an accompanying feeling of self-satisfaction (even though such a feeling would be well-deserved)

"What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world, is and remains immortal" Albert Pine.

> There's a yawning moral abyss (straight out of a John Martin painting) from this to the shortcut to a feeling of virtue taken by many of the activists for 'minority issues' (in quotes because these are rarely the true minorities). I see so much energy poured into schemes for gender equality but I just don't see it as a glaring moral injustice (and there are plenty of those around). I certainly hope these people won't be remembered as the Mary Wollstonecrafts of their day (although it's also quite possible that the volume and tone of their writings and recorded speech will deceive future historians about the nature of the problem they were 'fighting').

John Martin, how apt, The Destruction of Sodom & Gomorrah?

I'm not too family with Mary Wollstonecraft - the original suffragette? There have been many examples of truly great feminist throughout the last couple of centuries, my fear is that some of their modern day counterparts are ruining the movements reputation. When people like Germaine Greer are no-platformed, well that's just a tragedy. Fortunately, I think with the vast amount of data now being collected from all scopes of society these days, I don't think we need to worry about what historians will make of it in the future (as long as they are honest and objective).

> You're right that we should be charitable with respect to the intended motives - part of that charity is recognising that few of these people will have had much to do with people from social classes beyond their own. But this latter fact is a big problem, in the UK and elsewhere. The much-maligned Charles Murray has written what looks to be an interesting book on this topic, 'Coming Apart' (I haven't read it, but have heard his basic thesis. The title looks to be somewhat deceptive - it's really an issue of class, just that the white members of that class are the ones that have been left without a leg-up). Once again, I can only think that more bridge building will help us.

Yep.

Have you heard the Sam Harris podcast with Charles Murray, it discusses issues around his books "The Bell Curve" and indeed, "Coming Apart", but I haven't read either I'm afraid. How such a man of obvious wisdom and humility has been maligned by overbearing politically correct demagogues can only go to show the pitfalls that litter intellectual pursuits. As Harris says, is there any value following such theories precisely because of this?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1lEPQYQk8s

It's long, at over 2 hours.

One more thought on the hypocrisy I have been alluding to. Have you ever noticed the trend on television, especially in adverts, portraying the phenomenon of the (sometimes literally) the dumb male and the smart woman? It boils my piss! Can you just imagine the uproar if the roles were reversed? If it makes me feel like that, imagine what it's doing to psyche of young boys trying to find their place in the world? It's an absolutely disgraceful example of blatant sexism, but as usual, it passes unnoticed by most of society.

 

Post edited at 22:21
1
cb294 - on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Spent the entire weekend working on my computer, but no time so far even to look at this forum....

No it is not a particularly ivory tower viewpoint, if anything highly skilled immigration due to Trump and Brexit is what drives job competition in my field, so maybe I should start complaining as well!

Instead it is a question of alternatives: The majority of refugees were already in Europe (Greece, Italy, the Balkans, ....) and Winter was coming. Suspending the Dublin agreement and taking a couple of million people in, most of which were since granted temporary refugee status (similar to the Yugoslav crisis) was without alternatives, unless you wanted to subject these people to deliberate mistreatment (Hungary) or to unacceptable conditions in Greek camps that where by then completely overwhelmed. 

Merkel's punchline is "alternativlos", no alternatives to her program, but for once I think she was right. A bit more solidarity from the UK would have been rather welcome, though. After all, your government contributed to a significant extent to the destabilisation of the region, from Afghanistan to Syria, by running after Bush like an obedient poodle. The two most secular governments (even though they were far from pleasant) destabilized or removed, the Saudi nutters given carte blanche to spread their toxic Wahhabi crap, what a success! 

After all, we did cope well, though. Having a well organized and largely efficent civil service, all the way down to local councils, and of course having some spare money to throw at any problems did help. 

In the current coalition the conservatives have pushed through a monthly cap, but even that is higher than current actual influx of refugees. 

Back to work, but maybe we should anyway return to the main topic of this thread, which would be shame to derail!

CB

 

 

Rock The Lobster - on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to cb294:

Don't get me started on our government's arrangements with the Saudis nor their involvement in the region. I was on the London march in 2003 with millions of others. When I got back home I was punched whilst walking down the street with my placard by a Gloucester troglodyte. I won't repeat what he also said to me. It might also be worth finding out how many refugees the Saudis have taken in. I'm not sure of the exact figure, I think it's somewhere around zero.

Do you mind if I ask you, are you German?

Two reasons, if you are, then you can write better than most British people can, but more importantly, do you think that ordinary German people should still be paying for the sins of their fathers?

I asked a guy about it whilst on a business trip to Germany about 20 years ago. I told him about some of our sins, the despicable bombing of Dresden and the fact that the British are the only nation to have successfully completed a program of genocide, the Tasmanian Aboriginal people. Whilst I feel disgust at these crimes, I do not feel that I am in anyway responsible for them. Sure, we have to remember them to avoid committing further crimes in the future. The guy I asked could barely speak about it, such was his guilt and shame, which really shocked me. Is this now a part of the German psyche?

Whilst, the plight of millions of people in desperate need is tragic, I feel we must protect our society to some extent. Many of these people don't have remotely compatible values with our own. Women's Rights being one of them. Do we just hand over our countries, which we will do just through present birth rates, because we feel pity? Is that The Ivory Tower? Are we unintentionally causing massive problems for future generations? Perhaps this is the price of our complicity. However, I totally agree that we need immigration to prosper. This my favourite comedy sketch of all-time and I hope it makes you laugh:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZMCm_SnLYk

I am hinting at something here that concerns the subject matter, which I agree we should return to.

I'll get back to you soon.

 

 

Post edited at 19:20
Rock The Lobster - on 04 Feb 2018
In reply to cb294:

Hi folks, sorry about the length of this post. I’m just throwing out some ideas, perhaps just for my own benefit? You may find them erudite or you may think that I’m just a sad old git who is rambling away. Whichever, please take them in the spirit in which they were written.

Right, back to the topic.

I watched a video on YT recently that I won't post on here. The reason for this is that it offended my own sensibilities, so I can only imagine the reactions it will cause in others. The basic premise is that feminist leaning civilisations have always collapsed due to either internal strife or external invasion. I found, on the whole, it to be quite disgusting, small-minded, sexist and to some extent racist. But I can't stop thinking about some of the truths within it, in particular the references to what is happening right now.

I can't help but wonder, is this because of some latent sexism within me? Is it just speaking to my worst fears? Is it just propaganda that I've swallowed hook, line and sinker? But then I ask myself, is my personal offence due to preconditioning?

Do you think, as Peterson contends, that our society is in an existential crisis due to the problems facing men, in particular amongst young men and boys? I don’t know. But I truly hope not.

I have had a brief exchange of emails with one of our female UKC members (thanks Lucy). She pointed me in the direction of a man called Michael Kimmel, so I checked him out. At last! I’ve found a male feminist with real integrity.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7n9IOH0NvyY

Remarkably, he backs up some of Peterson's claims about childcare. He explains how boys progress through shared parental responsibility, I mean fully shared. I think this reflects Peterson's views that boys don't have many strong male role models. Are we in a society where women monopolise children?

Here are some basic facts that I've found:

https://www.statista.com/statistics/281640/lone-parent-families-in-the-united-kingdom-uk-by-gender/

I make that around 800,000 boys in lone mother households and that's at any one time. We had years of this reality. These aren't washing machines! They are complex biological entities with all sort of weird and wonderful chemicals floating around within them, responding to external stimuli, causing processes that we barely understand. I worry that we maybe doing them some real psychological harm.

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/620825/SFR25_2017_MainText.pdf

On page 7 you will find the breakdown of all school staff in the UK by gender. It's around a 80% women to men. Perhaps even more alarming is the breakdown of teachers at the primary school level, which are the major formative years of children. Then there's the breakdown of teaching assistants, which I believe is mostly in primary schools. Only 8.5% are men. Still, further, what are the percentages in infant and pre-school? I am glad to say that there appears to be some initiatives being introduced to redress this imbalance.

Some may say, "Great, we're heading for a feminised society".

OK. So we end up in a society populated by women and some kind androgynous version men. What do you think the real misogynist of this world will make of that? You know who I mean. Bye, bye free world, bye, bye women's rights, bye, bye the LGBT community, hello tyranny, hello subjugation. If you thought apartheid was bad…

If you research the history of empires you will find we are in the last stages that indicate ours might collapse.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7Gc1bv-Mj4

I can think of only a few of solutions and our present day moral code rules out most of those immediately. Luckily, I think we already possess the solution and you're looking at it. It is only through the power of information and real comprehension that we can find a solution that suits everyone.

Maybe the key is in what people like Kimmel and Peterson suggest or rather a synthesis of their ideas? Perhaps, we really do need to find a way of fully sharing our responsibilities from the very top to the very bottom. Women holding half the power and men doing half the parental and educational responsibilities, with everything in the middle being left to sort itself out by personal preferences. Perhaps we need to look a reevaluating wage structures and not just letting the market set the price. But, whatever we do, we cannot think that equality of outcome is the one true God.

If we truly want to survive, I believe we have to all work together to find these. We cannot carry on being so polarized. And that's not just confined to the field of gender equality.

3
Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Some big-thinking ideas there.

As regards equal representation, we have to think about why some of us have this as a goal. 

Is it (1), through a desire for fairness, with the implicit understanding that unequal representation implies unfairness? 

Or is it (2), because we admit to certain male-female differences and think that the majority presence of one or other sex in a certain position causes certain social ills (and the corollary, that a more equal [or reversed] representation would remedy them)?

I have been mostly arguing against the first reason; I don't think that unequal representation implies unfairness. The second may apply in some cases, but these should be rigorously argued for on a case-by-case basis, else we risk imposing great costs on individuals and society. CB has at least argued for the second one, and also implied that he supports the first one (at least in the context of academic professorship). I would still like to hear him make his case. And here, you are arguing for the second reason, albeit in a way that would involve increasing the proportion of men (in teaching, in this case).

The guy in the TED talk, Michael Kimmel, bases his whole case on (1), and without providing any evidence that it is justified. If you're after a male feminist with real integrity, how about Steven Pinker? He self-identifies as a feminist early on here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Hb3oe7-PJ8

 

To take the low proportion of male teachers, especially in primary schools, in the context of (2): some major societal change that affects the mental health and general well-being of men has clearly occurred during the last few decades. The causes of this are surely various, but the high rate of single-motherhood may well explain part of it. I'm not convinced, though, that our having too many female primary school teachers is to blame. The male-female imbalance here is likely another case of desires and aptidutes determining representation, and it's probably been that way for a while. I don't have the figures to hand, but don't you think it plausible that women have long predominated among primary school teachers, in decades that predate the education of those currently involved in the crisis of masculinity?

1
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

"The male-female imbalance here is likely another case of desires and aptidutes determining representation"

 

Agree. I don't know any "dad" that would relish teaching a primary school class (that's not to say they don't exist). My own experience and empirical evidence of dads at childrens parties/soft plays/play grounds/McDonalds/swimming pools is that they often either act like children (play the fool and enjoy some fun with their kids), show very little interest (on phone, read paper etc)  or are cross (lost control). Mothers , on the other hand, have an invisible aura of control and can switch between the first two but somehow rarely into the third. Is this some atavistic, biological skill learnt over millenia? I suspect it is, and I also suspect it's why you get more female primary school teachers than male. They instinctively find it easier.

This is not remotely scientific,exhaustive or based on anything concrete, just a generalisation of my own behaviour and others I have observed. 

1
Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Gosh yeah, Pinker, I've never considered him as a feminist. I suppose what I meant was overtly feminist. I had always wondered how he seems to have avoided the full-on wrath of social activists, given some of his theories.

Here's a somewhat enlightened conversation about the C4 interview and other gender issues. I found the female psychologists affectations mildly irritating, but she makes some great points:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyggRvJUOxQ

I'll watch the Pinker video and then get back to you.

Post edited at 13:39
1
Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> Gosh yeah, Pinker, I've never considered him as a feminist. I suppose what I meant was overtly feminist.

I suppose that's the thing. 'Overt' feminists aren't necessarily real feminists, in the sense that their actions don't actually benefit women.

> Here's a somewhat enlightened conversation about the C4 interview and other gender issues. I found the female psychologists affectations mildly irritating, but she makes some great points:

She does, in her slightly woolly way. It's certainly not normal for one gender, as a group, to be 'enraged' with the other.

1
Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> She does, in her slightly woolly way. It's certainly not normal for one gender, as a group, to be 'enraged' with the other.

Was that deliberate?

Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

LOL. We appear to have a serial disliker that hasn't got the nerve (I could use another word instead, but I'm learning) to come out and challenge our perspectives.

Seriously though, please educate us in where we are wrong or our logic is faulty.

Or are you going to sit there all day long just waiting for another post to dislike?

Ah well, on we go.

(Cue the dislike)

Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

I'm not sure if you meant "enraged" or "engaged". I suppose either could apply. I think what she is trying to say is that, whilst understandable, both sexes need to face up to their "collective rage".

TobyA on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> I suspect it is, and I also suspect it's why you get more female primary school teachers than male. They instinctively find it easier.

> This is not remotely scientific,exhaustive or based on anything concrete, just a generalisation of my own behaviour and others I have observed. 

I find it a bit surprising that people go straight to "it's in our genes/brain chemistry/etc." when explaining something like gender ratios in teaching and forget that for a big chunk of history jobs that involved looking after children were amongst the few that women were allowed/expected to do.

Bjartur i Sumarhus on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

"...were amongst the few that women were allowed/expected to do."

 

And why was that do you think?

Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> I find it a bit surprising that people go straight to "it's in our genes/brain chemistry/etc." when explaining something like gender ratios in teaching and forget that for a big chunk of history jobs that involved looking after children were amongst the few that women were allowed/expected to do.

I don't think that's being forgotten. Rather we have good reason to believe that such a ratio wouldn't be maintained long after women were allowed to do a wide range of other jobs. Black athletes coming to dominate in various sports mid-20th century is one such reason.

Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> Some big-thinking ideas there.

> As regards equal representation, we have to think about why some of us have this as a goal. 

> Is it (1), through a desire for fairness, with the implicit understanding that unequal representation implies unfairness? 

> Or is it (2), because we admit to certain male-female differences and think that the majority presence of one or other sex in a certain position causes certain social ills (and the corollary, that a more equal [or reversed] representation would remedy them)?

> I have been mostly arguing against the first reason; I don't think that unequal representation implies unfairness. The second may apply in some cases, but these should be rigorously argued for on a case-by-case basis, else we risk imposing great costs on individuals and society. CB has at least argued for the second one, and also implied that he supports the first one (at least in the context of academic professorship). I would still like to hear him make his case. And here, you are arguing for the second reason, albeit in a way that would involve increasing the proportion of men (in teaching, in this case).

Good observations which I think allude to the equality of opportunity versus the opportunity of outcome debate.

> The guy in the TED talk, Michael Kimmel, bases his whole case on (1), and without providing any evidence that it is justified. If you're after a male feminist with real integrity, how about Steven Pinker? He self-identifies as a feminist early on here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Hb3oe7-PJ8

> To take the low proportion of male teachers, especially in primary schools, in the context of (2): some major societal change that affects the mental health and general well-being of men has clearly occurred during the last few decades. The causes of this are surely various, but the high rate of single-motherhood may well explain part of it. I'm not convinced, though, that our having too many female primary school teachers is to blame. The male-female imbalance here is likely another case of desires and aptidutes determining representation, and it's probably been that way for a while. I don't have the figures to hand, but don't you think it plausible that women have long predominated among primary school teachers, in decades that predate the education of those currently involved in the crisis of masculinity?

When I were a lad there were plenty of male teachers at my primary school, I think probably around a 3:2 split in favour of female teachers. At secondary school this ratio was reversed or perhaps even more in favour of male teachers, perhaps even as high as a 3:1 split.

If you're talking about fairly recent history, ancient history and indeed prehistoric times, then yes, women have always been predominant in childcare. I think part of the problem I'm alluding to is an exaggerated pendulum effect in the feminisation of educational philosophies, which to me, seems to have become almost akin to a nursery rhyme that used to make me rage when I was just an infant.

"Girls are made of sugar and spice and all things nice.

Boys are made of snips and snails and puppy dog tails."

What I think needs to happen is all faction, feminist, male feminist, masculist and female masculist (yes, they do exist), come together to thrash this out, instead of just constantly throwing barbs at each other.

Right, the Pinker video. Wow, 2 hours long. I started watching it, but I think it better and fairer if I watch both sides of the debate and make observations along the way. This, given the fact that I will have to regularly pause it and my awful typing skills, will take me a few hours, but I think it worth it. The first ten minutes were fascinating.

See you in a while!

 

Post edited at 16:06
Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

More good points Bjantur. I think my reply to Jonny (directly above) could also apply to your post. Thank you.

Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> When I were a lad there were plenty of male teachers at my primary school, I think probably around a 3:2 split in favour of female teachers. At secondary school this ratio was reversed or perhaps even more in favour of male teachers, perhaps even as high as a 3:1 split.

Interesting to hear. In my primary school days, 18-25 years ago, every single teacher (of I think 12) was a woman (one male, then one female head while I was there), so the 8.5 % men figure didn't seem contrary to my personal case. At secondary school (very large comprehensive) I would estimate the ratio to have been around 2:1 women to men (also one male, then one female head).

> Right, the Pinker video. ... See you in a while!

Good luck! It's technical at times, and at least partly specific to the case of professors in STEM fields at top universities, but much of it is generalisable.

 
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

It's probably also worth considering that male teachers in primary education are so rare that they could probably walk into a convenient school, and once there, statistically it would suggest that their path to senior leadership/management is potentially easier than their female counterparts. The pay is (I think) the same as secondary school, based on fixed pay scales.....and still they don't want the work. I don't think you can put this down to stereotypes of "traditional womens work" that puts men off , although it is probably a factor. My personal feeling is the emotional engagement required with a room full of thirty 5 yr olds for 7 hours is not a common male attribute, but I stress this is just a personal "vibe" based on not a lot. It would be interesting to know if other cultures throughout the world have a similar demographic of primary age teachers.

Is it a good thing that some boys from single parent families don't have interaction with a male role model in school until they are in their teens? Probably not. So how do we address the imbalance? Maybe offer men a larger salary as happens in every other industry ;-)

Post edited at 16:54
galpinos on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

 

> Is it a good thing that some boys from single parent families don't have interaction with a male role model in school until they are in their teens? Probably not.

Is these the only two places boys can find role models, in their home and at school? Do single mums only interact with other single mums? Do friends fathers, family friends, uncles, other men they interact with not count as role models?

Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> I don't think you can put this down to stereotypes of "traditional womens work" that puts men off...

This is an important issue. If this were indeed the main dynamic, you would expect even the mildest stereotype to eventually push representation to the extremes of what that stereotype would predict (more of one sex goes into a certain job, it becomes more stereotypical for that sex to do that job, so more of that sex go into it etc). That's not what we see when social changes open up a job to a group to whom it was previously blocked. The sterotype is against them, but they don't seem to care!

> Is it a good thing that some boys from single parent families don't have interaction with a male role model in school until they are in their teens? Probably not. So how do we address the imbalance? Maybe offer men a larger salary as happens in every other industry ;-)

Maybe, although for a man to be a well-rounded role model he also has to be able to put a child in uncomfortable (challenging) situations, act in some sense as competition, and play a physical role. I suspect fathers are best placed for this, and I can't quite imagine a teacher fulfilling those roles (not in 2018, at least)!

galpinos on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> Maybe, although for a man to be a well-rounded role model he also has to be able to put a child in uncomfortable (challenging) situations, act in some sense as competition, and play a physical role. I suspect fathers are best placed for this, and I can't quite imagine a teacher fulfilling those roles (not in 2018, at least)!

Surely these can be done by a multitude of people within a child's life, not just their father?

 

Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to galpinos:

> Is these the only two places boys can find role models, in their home and at school? Do single mums only interact with other single mums? Do friends fathers, family friends, uncles, other men they interact with not count as role models?

It's an interesting question. I think the relationship between a father and his son allows certain interactions that would be inappropriate (or at least commonly perceived to be so) for other men to fulfill. I had a lot to do with a wonderful family friend, uncle and grandfather when I was growing up, but I know I missed a lot from not having a father around.

The sheer amount of time that those other men can be expected to be around is surely another part of it, as are the aspects of the child's life they are exposed to.

galpinos on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> It's an interesting question. I think the relationship between a father and his son allows certain interactions that would be inappropriate (or at least commonly perceived to be so) for other men to fulfill. I had a lot to do with a wonderful family friend, uncle and grandfather when I was growing up, but I know I missed a lot from not having a father around.

Obviously you missed experiences that you might have had if your father had been around but missed vital parts of "being a man" that only a father role model could have provided?

> The sheer amount of time that those other men can be expected to be around is surely another part of it, as are the aspects of the child's life they are exposed to.

I would agree with this to an extent as influence would be related to contact time but it is not an insurmountable issue.

Jonny on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to galpinos:

> Obviously you missed experiences that you might have had if your father had been around but missed vital parts of "being a man" that only a father role model could have provided?

'Vital' in the sense that I don't feel like a man for having missed them, no. Things that would have been beneficial, yes, I think so. As ever, the counterfactual is difficult to speculate on (and no doubt there are fathers who would do well not to be around their children while they're growing up), but on balance I think what is true for mothers is mostly true for fathers.

> I would agree with this to an extent as influence would be related to contact time but it is not an insurmountable issue.

Perhaps not insurmountable, but the simplest remedy would be having more fathers stick around, right?

Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to galpinos:

> Surely these can be done by a multitude of people within a child's life, not just their father?

Indeed there can be, but there's nothing quite like familial bonds. Just to throw a curve ball in. Surely there are also just as many girls missing out on a positive paternal influence too?

Still ploughing my way through the Pinker / Spelke debate, just taking a break and catching up on the conversation.

galpinos on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> Indeed there can be, but there's nothing quite like familial bonds. Just to throw a curve ball in. Surely there are also just as many girls missing out on a positive paternal influence too?

Oh, I agree, as a father of two girls I'd be a bit upset if I found out that all the effort I put into parenting was a waste! In the context of the thread, we were talking about boys and the lack of male role models and the problems that that causes (or doesn't.........).

> Still ploughing my way through the Pinker / Spelke debate, just taking a break and catching up on the conversation.

 

galpinos on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> 'Vital' in the sense that I don't feel like a man for having missed them, no. Things that would have been beneficial, yes, I think so. As ever, the counterfactual is difficult to speculate on (and no doubt there are fathers who would do well not to be around their children while they're growing up), but on balance I think what is true for mothers is mostly true for fathers.

Interesting. I guess I feel that a multitude of role models (of both sexes) are important to children and that, though a parental bond is something unique, their parents aren't the only adults a child can be influenced by, look up to and hope to emulate.

> Perhaps not insurmountable, but the simplest remedy would be having more fathers stick around, right?

Undoubtedly, life doesn't always pan out like that unfortunately. Hopefully the other adults within that child's life can "step up to the plate" and provide them with positive roles models that inspire them.

 

crossdressingrodney - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> One more thought on the hypocrisy I have been alluding to. Have you ever noticed the trend on television, especially in adverts, portraying the phenomenon of the (sometimes literally) the dumb male and the smart woman? It boils my piss! Can you just imagine the uproar if the roles were reversed?

Hopefully this recent announcement from the ASA will allow your piss to condense again:

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/jul/18/new-measures-announced-to-crack-down-on-sexist-adverts

 

2
Rock The Lobster - on 05 Feb 2018
In reply to crossdressingrodney:

Good news. I'll look forward to seeing women trimming their beards on adverts in the future and I hope I no longer have to watch Harvey Keitel saying, "Aren't you forgetting your donkey?" 

Seriously though, it's about time. Both sexes have suffered from stereotyping, from beautiful, skinny women to ripped, chiseled men. Stereotypical imagery damages the confidence of their respective sexes. My specific point was that women don't suffer from being compared unfavourably to men, when the opposite seems acceptable. Well, at least that's my perception, I'Ill be happy to be proved wrong.

It's not just adverts, take Family Guy for instance (The Simpsons is similar too). Lois and Meg are smart, Peter and Chris are stupid. The smart males are a baby and a dog! (It is still, very funny though )

Post edited at 23:09
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to galpinos:

> Is these the only two places boys can find role models, in their home and at school? Do single mums only interact with other single mums? Do friends fathers, family friends, uncles, other men they interact with not count as role models?

Of course not, but the bulk of their time will be spent at school and at home. A child with no Dad around and a female teacher will definitely have less interaction with a male role model than a child with a male teacher and/or a father at home who will hopefully be setting boundaries/examples and offering guidance and backing up the other parent etc.

Thrudge on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> I don't know how archiving works here, but the thread with this title has been archived after just two weeks in existence, and lots of activity. Perhaps it was the OP.

Not guilty, in fact I don't even know if an OP can archive a thread.  Thanks for resurrecting it - I've been ill and was unable to pay attention for the latter half, couldn't take much in at all.

 

Rock The Lobster - on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

I'm not sure, but I think the UKC might auto-archive threads when they become too large and unwieldy. There certainly doesn't appear to be any agenda on their part or else they would lock this one too.

 

*386 posts on the original and some were very long. (Sorry )

Post edited at 13:15
Thrudge on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> For a more balanced view, perhaps I should stop listening to the more rabid commentators, such as Sargon of Akkad and concentrate on people like Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris, etc?

I respectfully disagree.  I think we should listen to pretty much everyone, that way we get a broad understanding of what's going on.  This includes listening to the far left/SJW/post-modernists.

BTW, I wouldn't categorise Sargon as rabid, just forthright and (IMHO) rather unengaging.  If you want rabid, you'd have to go a long way to beat the distinctly NSFW and very funny Dr Randomercam  :-D

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPE663UJvus

Re Peterson and Harris, I'd say they're both well worth listening to.  So are Jonathon Haidt and Stephen Pinker.  And if you've an interest in the religious/scientific side, Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, and Christopher Hitchens are all compelling speakers.  I've had some rather splendid intellectual adventures with that lot.  And some big laughs with the rabid loons.

 

 

 

pasbury on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> Good news. I'll look forward to seeing women trimming their beards on adverts in the future and I hope I no longer have to watch Harvey Keitel saying, "Aren't you forgetting your donkey?" 

 

I'm interested in this example as what does Harvey Keitel represent in this ad? Is he a traditional male figure? Why is the donkey joke bit more important than his role, which you never even really notice?

 

 

Rock The Lobster - on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

Oh, I agree. It was purely from a personal point of view and "rabid" was just a throw away adjective.

You may think this a bit strange, but out of respect, I shall not be commenting on the core subject of this thread on today of all days.

https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/off_belay/suffrage-678814

See you tomorrow.

 

Jonny on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> You may think this a bit strange, but out of respect, I shall not be commenting on the core subject of this thread on today of all days.

do think it's a bit strange! After all, I think all of us here are arguing for what we believe to be best for society (women included!). If we argue against manifestations of 'feminism', it's because we don't think these 'feminists' really represent the best interests of women, or anyone else (but themselves, perhaps).

That said, you deserve a day off. That's a worthy cause per se.

Rock The Lobster - on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> I do think it's a bit strange!

I see your point, but it just doesn't sit well with me personally to be talking about the subject when today should be a celebration. But, that's just me.

> That said, you deserve a day off. That's a worthy cause per se.

Cheers mate! I've got my notes ready about the Pinker / Spelke debate! I'll post tomorrow.

BarneyLoosemore - on 06 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Peterson is the living embodiment of the word "hack". A member of the same genus as Sam Harris, Ben Shapiro and other alt-right demagogues who are famous not for their cogent arguments but for the manner in which they agitate the left. He's making a pretty penny ($500k+ a year in donations to be exact) appealing to the neo-fascist, reactionary tendencies of politically confused young white men (or, in the case of this thread, older ones..)

2
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> Peterson is the living embodiment of the word "hack". A member of the same genus as Sam Harris, Ben Shapiro and other alt-right demagogues who are famous not for their cogent arguments but for the manner in which they agitate the left. He's making a pretty penny ($500k+ a year in donations to be exact) appealing to the neo-fascist, reactionary tendencies of politically confused young white men (or, in the case of this thread, older ones..)

OK, it's now 01:16 on 7th February so, a) I feel comfortable posting on this thread again and b) you can no longer delete your post.

Dear sir,

Your post borders on the slanderous and I think you should perhaps retract your statements. But, as I'm an advocate of free speech, I leave that totally up to you.

Personally, I don't particularly care for Ben Shapiro or a lot of his views and granted, he is a member of the "Alt-Right". But, perhaps you should reflect on these words from 'the good Jewish boy turned Nazi' himself, "The fact that my grandparents and great-grandparents in Europe didn't fear that [tyranny] is why they are now ashes in Europe."

Sam Harris? Is that the Sam Harris who is a highly respected neuroscientist? Is that the Sam Harris that publicly and vehemently opposed Trump with reasoned arguments? Is that the Sam Harris that stands against both the far-right and the far-left? Is that the Sam Harris who is willing to contemplate and challenge just about any subject? Is that the Sam Harris who is possibly the most (British) liberal man in America? Or are you thinking of a different Sam Harris?

And last but not least, (in a Hugo Weaving voice) Mister Peterson! A clinical psychologist, who has helped thousands of men, women and yes, transgender people in his clinical practice. A man that has helped dozens of women achieve in their careers through assertiveness training, a man that gets support from men, women and yes, transgender people. An obvious "hack".

Now, let's see what he is intending to do with his pots of gold:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FaKl4yO8HAA

Have you ever thought that their views might appeal to "neo-fascists" and "reactionary tendencies" because they don't have any decent ones of their own?

You may not agree with most or any of their views, but your post does you no credit whatsoever.

Your final comment does you even less so.

I respectfully suggest that you think on your post a little further and assess your "reactionary tendencies". Or have you just had too much to drink?

 

 

Post edited at 02:16
2
Thrudge on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

I'm less well-intentioned than you, so I viewed the 'hack' post differently.  I think the subtext goes something like this:

"Clever people with clever arguments don't agree with me, so I hate them, I hate them, I hate them, I hate them.  Why do they have to make my views look stupid and wrong, WHY?  Nazis, Nazis, Nazis."

You hear this kind of 'argument' all the time from the hysterical far left.  Lot's of emoting and ad hominems; I think it's fun to answer in kind, now and then 

BTW, the sneers at Peterson's income (another common theme) are hilarious.  He put all his lectures, God knows how many hours of them, on Youtube for free.  How's that for an altruistic communistic utopian gesture?  But people voluntarily give him money, as much or as little as they choose, so that makes him a hypocrite/capitalist exploiter/sneaky money grabber.

The 'JP makes money so he's evil' whiners don't really care about him making money.  They care that it signifies the popularity of his views.  And, of course, they care that he has something which they do not and they'd very much like communism to steal it from him and give it to them, because that's only fair.

Personally, I couldn't care less what JP does with his money.  He can spend every penny on himself, buy a fleet of Rolls Royces, a bevy of bikini babes, and a doughnut factory.  It's irrelevant.

2
planetmarshall on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> In my opinion, the fact that this is on the "Culture Bunker" has 2 effects, one good, one bad. The bad one is that there appears to be very few women contributing to this debate.

Different levels of participation in this debate is purely down to biological differences between men and women. Why strive for equality of outcome?

1
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

Fair play Thrudge. But when I try that I seems to end up in hot water, so I'm learning to moderate myself!

You evidently have a better way with words than me or just don't care!

 

I see Cathy was banished to the cold on C4 News last night. ;)

Post edited at 13:26
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to planetmarshall:

> Different levels of participation in this debate is purely down to biological differences between men and women. Why strive for equality of outcome?

Oh I agree. It's purely from a personally point of view to help me gain understanding. I would really like to know what women actually want and do what I can to help them achieve it. But obviously, not to the point where it is destructive to the benefits of masculinity.

Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

Seriously though, how has Barney's post gained even one "like"? I can only deduced that my finger is so not on the pulse or there is a blatant case of double standards happening here.

At least I have to give Barney the credit of attempting to engage, even if it was ill-conceived.

Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to pasbury:

> I'm interested in this example as what does Harvey Keitel represent in this ad? Is he a traditional male figure? Why is the donkey joke bit more important than his role, which you never even really notice?

The Winston Wolfe character is indeed a stereotype male character. But, he's smart, polite, helpful and gets the job done, so that's a positive and achievable stereotype in a way. A bit like the 'power dressing' of smart women is. The donkey joke is a reference to the dumb male, if you like he's an ass. He doesn't speak, he just has a stupid look on his face whilst carrying all the luggage, like an ass.

Offwidth - on 07 Feb 2018
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

> If you're after a male feminist with real integrity, how about Steven Pinker? He self-identifies as a feminist early on here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Hb3oe7-PJ8

(It's too large so I have to do it in 2 posts)

OK Jonny, here goes!

I’ve just a couple of observations to begin with. You'd have thought that Harvard would have been able to afford a decent sound engineer. The sound quality was pretty poor all the way through, but Spelke was virtually impossible to hear at times. I just about managed it with some quality headphones though. This added to the problem that I was trying really hard to clear my mind of any gender bias. I think I managed it. I also had to be aware that Pinker was also a brilliant and entertaining orator, though Spelke had her moments too.

I'll just concentrate on each of their presentations, as I found the post-presentation stuff was just running over the same ground.

What a truly informative debate, which despite the sound quality I found very easy to follow. My general impression was that Pinker was arguing the case for nature and Spelke for nurture. But to tell you the truth, I could barely fit a fag-paper between them. I think that they both know we are molded by a combination of the two, but which one has predominance? The question is I suppose, how important is this fag-paper?

Although a key element of the debate was the underrepresentation of women in Tenured Professorships in the sciences, I think it can be directly applied to many aspects outside these fields including the pay-gap and the position of power questions.

Pinker argues that this is down to many natural factors that favour men; Spelke argues that it is due to social preconditioning.

Now before any of you hit the dislike button, Pinker makes this statement:

"The truth cannot not be sexist and whatever the results turn out to be, I don’t think they compromise the core of feminism.”

Some of Pinker's key points:

The normal distribution analysis of general intelligence. The female bell curve is considerably sharper than the male bell curve. This means, that though average IQ is identical, more women cluster around the average IQ level. The male bell curve is shallower and at the extremes this makes a big difference. In Pinker's words; "More prodigies, more idiots.” My experience is the latter is certainly true, well at least on here!

Working Hours. This can be summed up in a one-liner from Pinker. "There are slightly more men than women who don’t care that haven’t got a life.” 

Risk Taking. Pinker makes another brilliantly funny quip, which again sums this up very succinctly; “Men are very over represented in the following category… The Darwin Awards.” 

Pinker also argues that it has been observed that boys are more interested in objects, whilst girls are more interested in people. Hence there is a predominance of women in educational fields and the humanities and men in the sciences and engineering.

Whilst I am not saying this is the ideal, these are all skills, which could be argued that make men more successful in high-ranking roles. But that is under the present demands from the marketplace and I don’t doubt there is definitely a ‘boys club’ at the top.

1
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

(Part 2)

Some of Spelke's key points:

I think Spelke actually makes many points that back up Pinker. Girls do better at maths in school, the grades are equal in college, but boys do better at the higher ends of the subject. Surely, this can be attributed to their respective bell-curves? School being a relatively easy level, there are more girls than boys that will succeed, because there’s more stupid boys. In college, this level is centred on the mean, but the high-end stuff, where maths becomes far more esoteric and experimental; there are more boys than girls who have the aptitude for it.

Child Behaviour. Spelke sites example of where infants are indistinguishable when given certain test, they appear to have the same aptitude, countering Pinker's argument that girls like people and boys like things. I think there maybe something in this, but it must be remembered that these are given tests and not because they are naturally drawn to things within the tests. I talked to a friend who has a boy and a girl. He said he didn't notice much difference between them. But then said that his son used to break toys. At first he thought he was just being destructive, but then noticed that he was actually trying to reassemble them. I do know that’s very unscientific, given it’s the smallest possible sample size.

Parental Attitudes. Now, this is where I think Spelke made one of her best points and could indicate socially held ingrained prejudices. She argued that parents are more likely to push their child’s talents in the direction of traditionally held societal norms. “Girls don’t do engineering” or “boys don’t do nursing.”

Ingrained Prejudice. This is another example of where Spelke makes some good points. She gives some examples of where social held norms are applied to children when the gender identity of the same child is reversed. In a simple case, she explains where people interpret the feeling of a child when surprised by a jack-in-the-box. When identified as a male, they commonly say the boy is angry, but when identified as a female, they say the girl is scared. These are very stereotypical views of gender behaviour. She also sites an example of where men are favoured over women in orchestra auditions. I think this may well be true and quite common. Perhaps a way of eliminating these ingrained prejudices is through blind auditions or interviews? This could also eventually eliminate the problems around the necessity of positive discrimination. However, when it comes to the very top positions, it's not so easy, as many of those roles are headhunted.

I think all in all, Pinker proved his arguments better. I think that nature plays a massive role. But, I also agree with Spelke, that there are many factors that exist because of societal norms and ingrained prejudices.

The problem is, how do we overcome these without adversely affecting the wellbeing of both our society and businesses? I'm just not smart enough to know that answer, but perhaps the only way is a new approach to attracting the brightest and best to the appropriate roles. I think someone else has alluded to things like crèches at more workplaces. I think that these kinds of solutions may not be commonplace at the moment because, as Spelke asserts, are we unable to determine biological motives because of our ingrained prejudices and prejudice is winning the day, men are seen (unfairly) as the safe bet.

Finally, I wholeheartedly agree with Pinker's closing statement.

“There are very few jobs that require a penis or a vagina and all the other jobs should be open to both sexes.”

1
pasbury on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> The Winston Wolfe character is indeed a stereotype male character. But, he's smart, polite, helpful and gets the job done, so that's a positive and achievable stereotype in a way. A bit like the 'power dressing' of smart women is. The donkey joke is a reference to the dumb male, if you like he's an ass. He doesn't speak, he just has a stupid look on his face whilst carrying all the luggage, like an ass.


Yes I'm well aware of all that, but why do you focus so on the donkey and the not on the Wolfe.

I'm not quite sure what's going on with you.

I've observed your threads and found no entry point. Why don't you go out for a really long walk and clear your head?

You're getting worked up about nothing.

1
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to pasbury:

Why don't you f*ck off if you got nothing of interest to add?

3
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

Hi Offwidth, do you like the new name? Not very subtle, but perhaps you were right, my old one did me no favours.

I didn't find out anything new from the Grauniad article you linked, but thanks all the same. It was just a semi-hatchet job  (they know they can't go full-bore - yet) to discredit him and in my opinion, another attempt to back up one of their own. It wasn't Peterson's fault that Newman did such an appalling job. It's also not Peterson's fault who follows him, his success was not asked for, but why not use it if you've been given it? It must be remembered that he is also a beast of the far-left's own making. At least the article sort of alludes to that.

The article says that, "… his arguments are riddled with ‘pseudo-facts’ and conspiracy theories", but then just states the outlines of them, without actually saying why they are "riddled with ‘pseudo-facts’ and conspiracy theories". Quoting (and linking) people like one of the Toronto University professors, who he initial stood up to and the total hatchet job done in Maclean's, is just bad journalism. Whatever happened to asking someone with an unbiased opinion?

I'd bet you my left testicle they wouldn't do that kind of job on an Antifa activist or an extreme feminist. As for the level of composition, it's obvious Peterson would demolish young Dorian, someone who is an LGBT campaigner and we all know what they think of him.

"Here you go Dorian, this is your brief, get to work now, there's a good lad."

Still, it's all quite entertaining to watch their desperation unfold. Ta.

 

pasbury on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

You're turning into a one man echo chamber.

I was attempting to engage with you but I'm out.

1
Offwidth - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Yes the new name is better, wish I could say the same about some other aspects, but freedom of speech is important to me and I'd rather hear you opinions than ban them. I think JP is more concept than academic now and is being used in all sorts of ways in which his own stated opinions should regard as wrong. Its partly his fault though as he seems to relish his celebrity and he is making a lot of money and he is far from expert on too many matters he comments on; and so the Guardian report rings true (and is hardly a total hatchet job). 

1
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to pasbury:

So, your previous post was engaging with me? You asked a question, I answered, you didn't like that answer, so you posted a shitty reply.

If you believe in what you had posted, you obviously haven't been following my threads.

If you're out, cheerio, I (or this debate) won't miss you.

2
Postmanpat on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> Latest from the Grauniad


What a feeble article. It's just a cliched ad hom which doesn't even try to address any of Peterson's arguments. If his arguments are riddled with "pseudo-facts", and maybe they are, shouldn't they be pretty easily indentified and debunked? There are surely plenty of easy ways to undermine his jungian justification for religion, but the article doesn't even try. And to lump him in with Milo wotshisname and the alt-right is just lazy point scoring which undermines any reasonable criticism.

  Truly dire stuff.

 

1
Rock The Lobster - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> Yes the new name is better, wish I could say the same about some other aspects, but freedom of speech is important to me and I'd rather hear you opinions than ban them.

Why, thank you, how very libertarian of you.

> I think JP is more concept than academic now and is being used in all sorts of ways in which his own stated opinions should regard as wrong. Its partly his fault though as he seems to relish his celebrity and he is making a lot of money and he is far from expert on too many matters he comments on; and so the Guardian report rings true (and is hardly a total hatchet job).

As I have said before, there are things that I find somewhat off-putting about aspects of his delivery. I feel he certainly should pontificate less, but perhaps that would make him an easier target?

So, who are the "experts" who denounce him? Would that be Cathy Newman, Dorian Lynskey, Tabatha Southey? I haven't seen anyone with valid credentials or a direct bias discredit him or the core of his arguments. Perhaps you'd like to put some forward?

As for his supporters, shall we take a look at Camille Paglia?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camille_Paglia

Oh yeah, and shall we take a look at this line from the article as well? "Unsurprisingly, he was an early supporter of James Damore, the engineer fired by Google for his memo Google's Ideological Echo Chamber." Let's take a closer look at what that raving misogynist nut job has to say:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9_o42QaVnA

Here's his memo:

https://medium.com/@Cernovich/full-james-damore-memo-uncensored-memo-with-charts-and-cites-339f3d2d05f

Perhaps, you and pasbury might now have an idea of where I'm coming from. There is a very small, but very vocal element of social activism that has become like a religion, where the theology dominates any science or rational thought. And all dissenters must be crucified. I believe this is extremely dangerous, fascistic and needs to be challenged.

And finally, here's a quote I shall live by:

“It is obvious to you that the struggle will be an unequal one, but I shall make it - I shall make it as long as I have an ounce of strength left in me, or any life left in me.” Emmeline Pankhurst.

3
BarneyLoosemore - on 07 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

The masturbatory obsession you people have with 'free speech' (particularly in the case of dog-whistle Neo-Fascism, strangely enough..) is endlessly fascinating. I assume you are not familiar with the paradox of intolerance? "The paradox states that if a society is tolerant without limit, their ability to be tolerant will eventually be seized or destroyed by the intolerant". More than this, I find it hard to believe that you have no limits in terms of what discourse is allowed to occur - would you really accept a Holocaust or 9/11 or climate change denier in to a public university debate? Would you be just as quick to hop to their defence in the wake of any supposed "leftist censorship"?

When these alt-right, 'freedom' loving poster-boys are de-platformed, it is not because the left or university elite wants to stifle free speech - it is because they know full well these people come into debates or interviews or talks in bad faith, with the intention of catering to shy bigots for purely selfish gain, spreading misinformation and putting certain groups of oppressed peoples in danger. Of course, in many cases, this de-platforming plays right into the hands of these men - the only reason Peterson is at all well known is because of the threats of disciplinary action levelled against him by his faculty in the wake of his rather pathetic and bigoted 'stand' against the use of a transgender pronoun (which was quite obviously intended to cause a buzz - he knew right wing media outlets and gormless liberals would gobble the story up, 'of an innocent academic censored purely because he espoused opposing views', and put him directly in the spotlight). The idea that there exists some sort of leftist censorship or tyranny is quite absurd. Do you really think George Soros or Murdoch give a f*ck about what some irrelevant hack has to say about the use of gender pronouns?  

With regard Peterson's credentials - I admit to not knowing a whole lot about his work in psychology where he specialises. But he rarely talks about this research in public discourse. Most often he talks about "postmodernist neo-marxist" (whatever the f*ck he means by that), radical feminism, queer theory, etc. - predominantly topics of philosophy, a field it has become abundantly clear he (whether intentionally or not) knows f*ck all about. Really, a mere cursory reading of these subjects would make it hard for him to hold the beliefs that he does.

Now, Harris. He really is a hack. A "philosopher" who is literally a running joke in philosophy departments (in my faculty we call his fans "Harasites"). He somehow manages to confuse himself (and others) about one of the most fundamental issues of moral philosophy, Hume's Is-Ought problem (https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/hume-moral/#io), which any first year philosophy undergrad should know better than the back of their hand. He's also made a buffoon of himself in the debate surrounding free-will - here is Daniet Dennett, a juggernaut of philosophy of mind, dismantling Harris in this regard (https://samharris.org/reflections-on-free-will/). What of Harris' credentials as a neuroscientist? Well, we know in his PhD research he did not conduct a single experiment himself. And with his BA coming in philosophy one might wonder if he's even done a single experiment in his life. And yet you would call him a "neuroscientist"? He was also only a joint-author of the paper (there is a rather scathing critique of it from a genuine academic, statistician William Briggs, here: http://wmbriggs.com/post/4923/). Some other dubious findings surrounding his PhD work are investigated in this post: https://shadowtolight.wordpress.com/2015/01/07/neuroscientist-sam-harris/

 

 

Post edited at 23:53
5
Offwidth - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

Why attack reasonably sensible academic arguments  (albeit unpopular) when the real problem is straying into territory he knows little about whilst making a lot of money and seemingly enjoying dealing with his infamy. The far right are using him as a figurehead and the article is broadly correct. He should under his own rules call them out.

Hence, your attack on the writer looks a bit exaggerated, selective and ad hom to me.

Post edited at 00:50
2
winhill - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

>  would you really accept a Holocaust or 9/11 or climate change denier in to a public university debate?

Yes, of course they are acceptable, have been for decades where is your'faculty' that you think would block speakers like this?

> When these alt-right,

If you're going to lecture people on Philosophy it's really important you get your terms right, people like Peterson, Harris , Shapiro aren't recognisably 'alt-right' by any standard, what can you mean by alt-right?

> Now, Harris. He really is a hack. A "philosopher" who is literally a running joke in philosophy departments (in my faculty we call his fans "Harasites").

Harris is a polemicist, the rest of his output is laughable but the anti-religious stuff essential in an America where people really don't understand that the god stuff is backward at best.

It doesn't make him alt-right though.

 

3
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> The masturbatory obsession you people have with 'free speech' (particularly in the case of dog-whistle Neo-Fascism,… - would you really accept a Holocaust or 9/11 or climate change denier in to a public university debate? Would you be just as quick to hop to their defence in the wake of any supposed "leftist censorship"?

Yep, and then I would challenge them on the lunacy of their suppositions using reasoned debate. If you don't challenge idiotic views you leave them to ferment.

> When these alt-right, 'freedom' loving poster-boys are de-platformed, .… Do you really think George Soros or Murdoch give a f*ck about what some irrelevant hack has to say about the use of gender pronouns?

More slander. I found out today that even Shapiro denounces the Alt-Right. As I said, the fact that they latch on to their words is because they haven't got a good argument or a brain cell between them.

Do you think it's OK to de-platform Germaine Greer or Peter Tatchell? If so, you're just as nasty and fascistic as the Alt-Right or your average SJW.

Peterson's stand was against the compulsion of speech, a path that he believes leads to tyranny. He never said he would not use a person's pronoun of choice if asked to, as long as it wasn't politically motivated. It just that he was not going to be told what to say, rather than not what to say, which is a totally different ball game. The accusation that he did refuse when asked is a SJW lie and I'm sure the University of Toronto would have shown him the door very quickly if he had, as they were itching to try and get rid of him. You may not like the things that he says, but I believe he is genuinely trying to help people. Are you?

As for Soros and Murdoch, I'll be glad when both of those f*ckers are dead.

> With regard Peterson's credentials - I admit to not knowing a whole lot about his work in psychology where he specialises.… Really, a mere cursory reading of these subjects would make it hard for him to hold the beliefs that he does.

You've been watching too many of the wrong types of YouTube videos, those "7 times Peterson DESTROYS / GOES NUCLEAR / WENT BEAST MODE" bullshit videos. So, if you don't know of Peterson's credentials why did you previously intimate this? It is through his clinical observations of real people that he motivates the main thrust of his agenda, which is to help people become stronger and lead more fulfilling lives.

> Now, Harris. He really is a hack. A "philosopher" who is literally a running joke in philosophy departments (in my faculty we call his fans "Harasites").

Thanks for the links, I'll check them out, I haven't got time right now, it's too late. But, to tell the truth I don't care. I like listening to his podcasts just to learn all sorts from all sorts of people. Also, have you ever thought that others might have an agenda against him?

However, from this paragraph I can take a reasonable guess as to what your faculty is like. I bet you lot sit in your ivory towers musing on bullshit, like is it morally justifiable to dunk my Rich Tea or is that unnecessarily cruel? I bet you have no idea what a real struggle is apart from having to finish some assignment whilst you're nursing a hangover, because you pissed your student loan against a wall the night before. Or did mummy and daddy pay for your expensive education? You are in a place of total privilege, yet you lot moan as if you're under the lash of some kind of Wahhabist nightmare.  What the f*ck have you ever really done? Onsighted a VS? I piss all over your grades and I don't reckon that's because I'm physically stronger and I'm over 50, over 15 stones and smoke like a chimney. I bet you've never had to struggle in your life, it looks that like from your photos, you've got plenty of expensive gear and plenty of time to use it, in plenty of beautiful locations. Come down to my level to have a small taste of what the world can really be like and like the vast majority of people in this country, I think I'm still privileged to have it this easy, it could be a shite sight worse.

Anything to say about Pinker? Even he's been getting it recently.

Anything helpful to say about the actual debate that a few of us are trying to grope our way through, in the dark? Or are you just going to continue to spout vitriol like the childish little SJW you are making yourself out to be?

You can add that lot to the "7 times Paddy went BEAST MODE".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5MO73ftdpA

Post edited at 02:28
4
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> I'm less well-intentioned than you,  

Is that better Thrudge? ;)

Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> Why attack reasonably sensible academic arguments  (albeit unpopular) when the real problem is straying into territory he knows little about whilst making a lot of money and seemingly enjoying dealing with his infamy.

>

   Chomsky and most public intellectuals, almost by definition, stray into areas outside their speciality. Critics should critique their arguments, not their right to hold them. Why shouldn't he enjoy making money out of it or even the fame that comes with it? You think Dawkins and Hiarris, for example, don't enjoy it? Whether he does or doesn't is irrelevant to the validity or otherwise of his arguments.

 

Post edited at 08:32
Thrudge on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> Latest from the Grauniad

Oh no, it's Dorian Lynskey  and his 2-1 in English here to tear apart Jordan Peterson's ideas.  Oh, hang on - no it isn't.  It's just a bunch of sixth form debating tactics and ad homs.  Hey, can I play, too?

Dorian Lynskey is a faint-hearted, pencil-armed, girlyman who uses a moderate fluency with language to mask physical cowardice, failure to become a moral adult, and a profoundly justified sense of personal inadequacy. A milksop with a grudge and a dictionary.

How am I doing, Dorian? Have I achieved journalism yet?

For all I know, little Dorian leapt at this assignment like a bantam rooster convinced it was going to rip apart the Doberman tip-toeing through it's cultural territory.

But it's also possible that the job was just landed on him by his boss. In which case,
The Guardian would by no means be playing fair with Mr Lynskey. They encounter an experienced, accomplished, and highly qualified intellectual and psychologist whose views make them quail in their right-on middle class designer boots. And who do they wheel out to confront him? Their music critic. They didn't pick this guy as their David against Goliath, they just saw they were on a loser and threw him under the bus. "I'm even thicker than Cathy Newman, I'm not risking my reputation as a right-on icon by going up against Peterson. Let the music dweeb do it, f*ck him".

If that's how it happened, then way to go, Grauniad - cowardice and dishonesty all in one package.

6
Offwidth - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

Dawkins increasingly pisses me off (especially on religion). I don't read Harris. Chomsky is often overtly political. All three rightly get flack when they stray into dodgy terrain and so should JP. I guess I don't beleive in The Public Intellectual: you are either acting as an expert with public acclaim within your field or straying into politics (no bad thing but subject to the scrutiny that we need to give to all politicians). Very high IQ, academic work and success in politics never seemed to me to sit well (otherwise why are so few political leaders in that category and those that were often end up more infamous than respected?). Money, power and fame have caused all sorts of problems for such academics in the past, so sure, if his arguments remain pertinent, logical and well researched thats good news, but the evidence seems to me to be contradicting that.

Post edited at 09:54
2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

Well said PMP. A century on from perhaps the biggest break through in democracy, it seems like there are some that want to erode away the principles that many have fought and died for. (I don't mean you Offwidth). Society seems to be sleep walking into tyranny again, as it always seems to do when it's gets too fat and comfortable.

What kind of hypocritical bullshit is thjs?

"The masturbatory obsession you people have with 'free speech' (particularly in the case of dog-whistle Neo-Fascism, strangely enough..) is endlessly fascinating. "

Take that dog-whistle out of your mouth Barney, you are the Neo-fascist!

Is it OK for a handful of pathetic morons to shout down a democratically elected official like Jacob Rees-Mogg trying to talk to a room full of people exercising a right of democracy? As much as I dislike the views of the minister for the 19th Century, I will dead before I see his or anyones right to speak taken away.

3
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

Bang on Comrade Thrudge, wanna start a counter-revolution?

It's time to take down the bourgeois elite. Sargon's up for it.

1
Offwidth - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Talk is cheap and UKC is full of armchair critics and bs bluster... what do you do in real life to help?

JP is to be respected in my view for public action, especially facing the idiocy in language policing, which was in my view a real scandal that he dealt with bravely as pretty much an unknown. However for someone so self defined as very very careful with words he has been picked apart by experts on grounds outside his expertise. TV interviews get all the news but thats just fluff to me. He is also strangely quiet on stuff like alt right manipulation of his views... something that very much doesn't fit with what he espouses.

2
Jonny on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

Barney, I don't have much to say to the specifics of your post, but here are a few (completely non-patronising) things to think about that will make you more well-rounded:

1) Consider the different roles people have in the world (bright generalist versus professional philosopher or scientist: Sam Harris vis-à-vis Daniel Dennett [who happens to be an intellectual hero of mine]).

2) Read (Anatol) Rapoport's rules. http://www.rightattitudes.com/2017/06/16/rapoport-rules-criticism/

3) Go to a pub in the roughest part of your local town or city, find a man or woman in a bad way, and talk to them. As soon as Guardian-style alarm bells start ringing when they say something that you disagree with, make a mental note and explore why they might believe that. Compare their situation to your own. Then compare the alarm-bell moments to what you've since discovered.

4) Consider Pliny the Elder's claim that ' The only certainty is that nothing is certain.' Not even Hume's naturalistic fallacy. (I learnt the 'central dogma' of biology as an undergraduate, and that was wrong too). Expand your repertoire of known unknowns (D. Rumsfeld, 2002).

1
Thrudge on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> The masturbatory obsession you people have with 'free speech' (particularly in the case of dog-whistle Neo-Fascism, strangely enough..) is endlessly fascinating.

Wow, lot's going on here.  It's not an obsession, but it's certainly a concern.  JP, Harris, and the rest are not neo-fascists, but we can play that game if you wish: I think every word that comes out of their mouths is a golden truth.  Anyone who disagrees with me is a paedophile.  

> I assume you are not familiar with the paradox of intolerance? "The paradox states that if a society is tolerant without limit, their ability to be tolerant will eventually be seized or destroyed by the intolerant".

You're right, I wasn't familiar with it as a formally stated phenomenon, but the general idea is familiar enough, as is it's current exploitation by the immoderate wing of Islam.  You're against that, right?

> More than this, I find it hard to believe that you have no limits in terms of what discourse is allowed to occur - would you really accept a Holocaust or 9/11 or climate change denier in to a public university debate? Would you be just as quick to hop to their defence in the wake of any supposed "leftist censorship"?

Try harder.  Yes, I really would accept a Holocaust or 9/11 or climate change denier in to a public university debate.  The best place for bad ideas is out there in the public domain where they can be picked apart.  A significant part of a university education is exposure to all sorts of ideas, good and bad, so that you can learn to distinguish between them.  What a university should not be is a temple of orthodoxy for political indoctrination.  

> When these alt-right, 'freedom' loving poster-boys

Careful now - you're starting to sound like a paedo....

> are de-platformed, it is not because the left or university elite wants to stifle free speech - it is because they know full well these people come into debates or interviews or talks in bad faith, with the intention of catering to shy bigots for purely selfish gain, spreading misinformation and putting certain groups of oppressed peoples in danger.

Really?  Universities harbour so many 'shy bigots' that exposure to wrong-think will ignite in them an unstoppable righteous fury that will swiftly lead to fights, riots, car burnings and property destruction.  Well, you might have a valid point there.  Unfortunately for your argument, this has only happened (and happened lots of times) with the far-left.  Oh dear.

As for 'putting oppressed peoples in danger', name a group of oppressed people.  I'll help by starting you off with: Christians in Islamic countries, Jews in Islamic countries, Russians in the former Soviet Union, and North Koreans in North Korea.  Your turn.  Name an oppressed people in western Europe.  Or Canada.  Or the US.  

> Of course, in many cases, this de-platforming plays right into the hands of these men - the only reason Peterson is at all well known is because of the threats of disciplinary action levelled against him by his faculty in the wake of his rather pathetic and bigoted 'stand' against the use of a transgender pronoun 

You appear to have swallowed yet another far-left lie, or rather a collection of lies.  Let's pick them apart.  Peterson was well known in Canada years before the pronoun debacle, having appeared on television in various discussions and individually as a commentator.  The U of T catapulted him to global fame by caving in to SJW nitwits and going after him.  They did not simply threaten him with disciplinary action: they told him if he didn't use made up pronouns like 'ze' and 'zur' he would be in breach of university policy - which could, of course, lead to his dismissal - they specifically stated that he would also be in breach of the law.  Which could lead to a fine and/or prison.  Because that's what happens when you break the law.  At no point did Peterson say he would would not refer to a trans person as he or she (depending on their preference) in fact he explicitly stated the he would call a male who transitioned to female 'she' and a female who transitioned to male 'he'.  What he refused to do was use made up pronouns, partly on the grounds that they are silly, but primarily on the grounds that the government must not be allowed to compel speech.

> The idea that there exists some sort of leftist censorship or tyranny is quite absurd. Do you really think George Soros or Murdoch give a f*ck about what some irrelevant hack has to say about the use of gender pronouns?  

I've no idea what George and Rupert think.  I have a very clear idea that some far-left academics and a lot of intellectually lame students and associated hangers-on care very deeply about gender pronouns.  I know this because they keep on saying so; they really do care about this idea.  But only in the way that a hunter cares about his gun.  The pronoun idea is a weapon, a tool to exert psychological control over others.  Control the language and you control the discourse.  If you haven't read 1984, go home right now and read it.  If you have read it, you haven't understood it.  (I won't be uncharitable and suggest that you read it and thought it was a good idea).

> With regard Peterson's credentials 

With regard to your credentials, let's look at how suited you are to decide which ideas are good ones and which ones bad, which ideas we and your fellow students are allowed to hear and which we are not, what is moral and what is immoral, what is good for the polity and what is not.  Who, exactly, is qualified to make these decisions? It's you, isn't it?  Oh joy.  Hallelujah and praise Jesus, we're going to be mentally controlled by a boy.  And not just any boy - he's got a degree!  Or perhaps he's nearly got one.  My delight knows no bounds, I am enraptured, if I was any happier my nipples would explode and my trousers fall off.  

Thank God the pub will be open later.

 

5
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> Oh no, it's Dorian Lynskey  and his 2-1 in English here to tear apart Jordan Peterson's ideas.  Oh, hang on - no it isn't.  It's just a bunch of sixth form debating tactics and ad homs.  Hey, can I play, too?

You are DoctorRandomercam and I claim my £5

Edit: I put forward your last (extremely funny and astute) post as further evidence. Thinking about it, Sargon does a bit climbing, doesn't he?

You are Sargon of Akkad and I claim my £5

(Just hedging my bets!)

Post edited at 12:20
1
Thrudge on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

If I had half the good doctor's brains and talent, I'd be twice as clever as I am now. 

Post edited at 12:24
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

A great response Jonny.

Unfortunately, I can tell you through personal experience that reasoned arguments aren't gonna work. We're dealing with dogma here.

1
BarneyLoosemore - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to winhill:

> Yes, of course they are acceptable, have been for decades where is your'faculty' that you think would block speakers like this?

You think a holocaust denier would be allowed into a public debate at a respected university? What on earth..? 

> If you're going to lecture people on Philosophy it's really important you get your terms right, people like Peterson, Harris , Shapiro aren't recognisably 'alt-right' by any standard, what can you mean by alt-right?

Yes they are. Their fanbase is overwhelmingly alt-right, their views overlap with or are directly shared with the alt-right, and they cater directly to an alt-right audience. Whether or not they adopt or accept the label (and, in fact, whether or not the label is even appropriate) is entirely irrelevant - they are icons for the movement and that is what matters in this particular discourse. 

 

> Harris is a polemicist, the rest of his output is laughable but the anti-religious stuff essential in an America where people really don't understand that the god stuff is backward at best.

I mean, this is disputable at best, as he's a bad Atheist as well. More than that, in his Atheism (even when well intentioned), he acts as a sort of new-atheist to alt-right reactionary 'funnel', which is harmful in its own right. Many of those that indulge in New Atheism do so as an exercise in affirming their own intelligence - all it takes is a swift rhetorical manoeuvre, and the Creationist's arguments are rendered futile in the face of "reason" and "logic". Of course, there's a limit to the number of arguments one can have with bible-bashers, and so these people move on to new targets. "Screeching, emotional feminists" "SJWs" "the intolerant left" and so on. What they fail to understand, though, is that feminism, critical theory, gender studies, whatever - these are all reputable fields, overlapping with the social sciences, hard sciences, humanities, and so on. And so they make buffoons of themselves, and in turn propagate genuinely harmful ideas and sentiments, which are absorbed into the public psyche via cultural osmosis. I know this because, a few years back, I was one of them. That was until I realised that all these fields of "social justice" - feminism, critical theory and so on - were not "emotional" or "illogical". No, in fact the inverse was true. 

 

Post edited at 12:42
5
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Offwidth:

> Talk is cheap and UKC is full of armchair critics and bs bluster... what do you do in real life to help?

I try to engage with the people, who are willing to, in philosophical or sociological debate, if not I leave them alone. I do this to help myself to be in a better position to help others. I've tried to do that here with this debate and I've even tried to invite a couple of our fellow female posters to engage, primarily to help me and others try to get a grip on what is actually going on with real people. Unfortunately, both have politely declined, saying it's not worth the hassle and quite frankly, I don't blame them.

More recently, I have tried to help a friend come to terms with losing, at least temporarily, access to his kids, due to the lies of his vindictive ex. I have tried to encourage him to see that he is a good man, to use this unjust situation to build his already considerable inner fortitude and to never give up on the idea that his kids need him.

I have done simple things to like buying a homeless person a sandwich or helping strangers when I see that they are struggling with something and not just walking by whilst staring at my iPhone.

I've had the guts to publicly apologise when I realise that I've said something wrong and be willing to take whatever is thrown back at me as a result. It is a gift that is all to absent in our society at present. I honestly don't remember anyone else on here apologising when they've said something that they shouldn't have. In fact, sometimes I get grief just for apologising. If anyone does genuinely apologise, I accept it, forgive them and give them credit for stepping up to the plate. The two female posters I mentioned above have done that for me, it is a female quality that I think we men should learn.

And, most importantly, I am willing to be proved wrong and grateful that someone has enlightened my understanding. Another social gift that is all to rare.

It is only through our experience of others and ourselves that we learn anything of true value.

Thrudge on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> feminism, critical theory, gender studies, whatever - these are all reputable fields, overlapping with the ... hard sciences

<draws up a chair, opens a beer> This should be good.  Paging Dr Hellier - Dr Hellier to the Information Desk, please.

While we're waiting for a real scientist, I shall enlighten the crowd by presenting my findings on isotope stability using the medium of interpretative dance. It's a reputable field.  

2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> You think a holocaust denier would be allowed into a public debate at a respected university? What on earth..? 

If think you should know something of winhill's background before you make this comment. He speaks from a position of greater authority than you will ever have.

2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> What they fail to understand, though, is that feminism, critical theory, gender studies, whatever - these are all reputable fields, overlapping with the social sciences, hard sciences, humanities, and so on. And so they make buffoons of themselves, and in turn propagate genuinely harmful ideas and sentiments, which are absorbed into the public psyche via cultural osmosis. I know this because, a few years back, I was one of them. That was until I realised that all these fields of "social justice" - feminism, critical theory and so on - were not "emotional" or "illogical". No, in fact the inverse was true. 

Oh great! Thanks mate, you've just broken my bullshit detector.

 

2
BarneyLoosemore - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

I appreciate your sentiments Jonny. Unfortunately though, I've engaged with enough reactionary apologists to know that charitable discourse in this regard is a dead-end. Online, atleast.

I'm not stupid. I've argued in real life with people from a multitude of different backgrounds. Many people have valid reasons (in their minds at least), based on their own life experiences, to hold problematic beliefs. I fear you have some image in your mind of me lecturing those far less privileged than myself on the issue of the patriarchy, or why their mis-gendering of someone is so problematic, or whatever. It's rather offhand and disingenuous (and awfully cliche) of you to assume that I must be out of touch with the British working class because I'm a leftist. Really all it is is repackaged DM rhetoric. 

It seems you have some notion in your head that fair and charitable discourse must always inevitably lead to the truth, hence your posting of Rapoport's Rules (which, incidentally, I have read and taken note of before). It's a poetic thing to believe. But it's false, and it's at the heart of why these men are so toxic. People like Peterson and Shapiro are not arguing in good faith. They know many of their arguments are poor. But they have developed a multitude of rhetorical strategies to convince people that their arguments are strong: they talk fast and with confidence, they use quippy one liners in response to long and protracted opposing argument, they pick their words wisely, and of course, they appeal to every liberal/moderate/conservative's wet dream - the notion of unfettered freedom of speech. It would be bad enough if the conclusions to their arguments were inconsequential. But, more often than not, the end point is morally abhorrent. Race realism, gender essentialism, justification of imperialism, of sweatshops, the wage gap, rape culture, and so on. In light of this, your expectations of me or of other leftists to approach the discourse with the intention of "re-express[ing] [our] target’s position so clearly, vividly, and fairly that [our] target says, “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way" - in other words being as charitable and fair as possible - is bordering on absurd. "It's as if activists dedicated to developing concrete political strategies to fight against the institutional propagation of reactionary ideas and practices were supposed to simply stand in silent awe before the moralist intoning of the patronising, self-appointed judges of action, who themselves passively condone the institutional organisation of fascism and top-down class warfare".

As for your fourth point - I'm not sure how this relates to anything that I said? The truth or whatever of the Is-Ought gap is irrelevant to Harris' complete and utter failure to explain how we could bridge it via science. (Moreover, the naturalistic fallacy was formulated by G.E. Moore - not Hume - and although related to it, it is distinct from the Is-Ought problem)

 

 

 

 

 

4
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

Tu es Jacques Derrida et je réclame mon 5€

1
Thrudge on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Now that's funny 

2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

Someone doesn't think so!

L'éloquent Monsieur Derrida must be pissing himself somewhere in the collective unconsciousness due to all the stirring up he has done of "the neo-fascist, reactionary tendencies of politically confused young [people] (or, in the case of this thread, [childish] ones..)"

Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

> Most often he talks about "postmodernist neo-marxist" (whatever the f*ck he means by that),

I'll let the man himself explain, but I suspect you will refute his arguments with your own postmodernist arguments, as he says you will.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkmXwByGmjc

Perhaps, this next one will strike a chord within you?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbA9ALOrHaA

Or if you don't like that guy, perhaps you will prefer this one? You may have heard of him?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBJtGi6Bc0s

1
BarneyLoosemore - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Are you familiar with Google Scholar? A great tool for finding papers and books on any number of subjects. A quick search of "feminist" nets us over 1.5 million results, and 10s of millions of citations, from all manner of reputable departments and academic institutions. Here's a paper which crosses into the ("sacred")  domain of physics: [https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11191-006-9065-3]. And biology - [https://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=gQQkAvU4S1oC&oi=fnd&pg=PA172&dq=feminist+chemistry&ots=Y6kyBRR0fl&sig=CtRStYOrLk5NYpGsjv9hC4pCB_Y#v=onepage&q=feminist%20chemistry&f=false]. Sacrilege, I know. 

I could go on. These subjects are quite obviously regarded as legitimate by the greater academic community, and by any professor of science worth their salt. In fact, one could argue that they offer us an important critique of the empirical method, which in its current state is not infallible. Oppressive structures of hierarchy have and continue to be reproduced within the natural sciences (whether consciously or subconsciously): take, for example, the emergence of race realism in the 18th century. 

5
cb294 - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

I absolutely agree that the basis of gender roles can be a valid subject of genetic, neurobiological, ethological, and evolutionary research in the same way the topic can be seriously addressed through historic, sociological, and psychological approaches. However, the book excerpt you linked to almost reads like a piss take.

This stuff is precisely what has hard scientists roll their eyes loudly.

I quickly scanned through the chapter about sex determination that was freely visible, and it is almost as bad as the examples cited by Sokal and Bricmont about postmodern philosophers abusing physics. The authors cite quite a few papers I am highly familiar with through my own work, but they appear to not have understood the content of these papers one little bit. 

The other one seems to be about the female representation in physics, which is a question of sociology not physics. I also happen to disagree with the paper, especially because all physics departments I know do absolutely anything to recruit and retain talented female scientists (this is also the experience of my daughter who is studying physics). However, the paper at least attempts to reason coherently.

Back in the 1990s the laughable Julia Kristeva spouted some rubbish (including fake formulas that made no sense whatsoever) about fluid dynamics being soft and female in nature and some other field of physics being hard and masculine. 

That said, I get the same impression from listening to JP: He also clearly appears to be out of his depth when talking about biology, but does so with great confidence. The approach works, because many people both on youtube and on this forum here appear to be happy enough when they hear their prejudices supported by scientific sounding arguments.

Whether these arguments are valid is absolutely secondary.

CB

 

edit: forgot one line...

 

Post edited at 17:30
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

^

Wot e zed.

The trouble with your brand of postmodernist guff, is that you can say whatever you like and believe whatever you like, but it doesn't make it true. It just cleverness to attract the skirt. Do you know what Dawkins means by "sneaky f*cker"? Are you one?

Meanwhile in the real world………

1
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to cb294:

Sorry CB, Jonny and others (not Thrudge - he's loving it! ) that this thread has been hijacked by this charlatan. Perhaps, we'll get back to the real subject we were debating after he's drowned in his own semantic faeces.

3
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

Anything to say about the words of your hero?

2
Stichtplate on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

Type Loch Ness monster into google scholar. Do the many thousands of results mean Nessie is real?

 

TobyA on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

What area of science or social science (or indeed arts) have you studied most in Rock? 

1
cb294 - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Stichtplate:

Barneys links unfortunately have been a bit of an own goal. 

His point about these topics being valid subjects for proper science are nevertheless correct, as is his assessment of JP as a scientific nonentity - at least as far he bases his ideas on biology - and a dog whistle alt right agitator. 

I do not know whether JP actually supports the alt right movement on ideological grounds, or whether he just spotted a quick way of getting rich. No idea which option I would find more despicable, probably the latter. 

Barney is also right on the issue of free speech. The alt right snowflakes always whine about deplatforming. No one denies them a soapbox on speakers corner, there is no issue of free speech. However, a university, like any other institutions, should of course be free to set standards as to which external speakers they are prepared to lend legitimacy by offering them a platform.

This need not even be political. I was surprised that a few years ago UC Santa Cruz hosted the US Society of Dowsers annual meeting in parallel to a scientific meeting I was attending. The dowsers were a friendly bunch we met every day over diner, but offering university premises to pseudoscience is wrong in principle.

CB

1
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> You appear to have swallowed yet another far-left lie, or rather a collection of lies.  Let's pick them apart.  Peterson was well known in Canada years before the pronoun debacle, having appeared on television in various discussions and individually as a commentator.  The U of T catapulted him to global fame by caving in to SJW nitwits and going after him.  They did not simply threaten him with disciplinary action: they told him if he didn't use made up pronouns like 'ze' and 'zur' he would be in breach of university policy - which could, of course, lead to his dismissal - they specifically stated that he would also be in breach of the law.  Which could lead to a fine and/or prison.  Because that's what happens when you break the law.  At no point did Peterson say he would would not refer to a trans person as he or she (depending on their preference) in fact he explicitly stated the he would call a male who transitioned to female 'she' and a female who transitioned to male 'he'.  What he refused to do was use made up pronouns, partly on the grounds that they are silly, but primarily on the grounds that the government must not be allowed to compel speech.

I don't think you're representing the pronoun issue accurately, I think you like JP and believe what he says even when it's a simple matter to see that he's not telling the truth. I'm not supporting the UoT position, but I think there's a lot less certainty about this issue than you make out.

I posted this stuff earlier on, but I'll post it again:

He's generated a huge amount of interest and publicity on the basis that this law compels him to use ridiculous pronouns, but does he even understand the law he's so angry about? 

https://torontoist.com/2016/12/are-jordan-petersons-claims-about-bill-c-16-correct/

What he's saying about the law fits neatly with the postmodern neo-Marxist conspiracy theory, but not so well with what lawyers say about the law. I don't think he's looking at the facts of the matter objectively, I think he's twisting the facts about the world to fit his distorted vision of what he thinks is in it. Recall that we're talking about a guy who still believes in the Bible and Jung, even though these are regarded as fairy stories by anyone who cares about understanding the world objectively.

How do beliefs in nonsense persist? You hang on to them and then make the facts in the world fit the picture you're clinging on to in your head. That's how religion persists. Do you really trust that what he says is accurate, when we know that he's able to cling on to nonsense and twist reality into contortions that allow the nonsense to remain intact? 

As for whether he would or wouldn't use an "alternate pronoun" 

 https://tinyurl.com/y7z9ucbg

Note: a)"especially when backed by punitive legislation"; and

b) and there's no indication of whether he'd use he vs she or "they" or some made-up word; he could have clarified here but left us with a general "no, [I would not use alternate pronouns]"

Now this isn't the position he's saying he's always taken. He's smudged over what he said to make himself appear more reasonable. A paragon of intellectual honesty it is not. It's shifty as f*ck!

And can we take a step back here? How many times in your life have you ever been required to change the pronoun you were using about another person. For me, it's none. It's a total non-issue. If some bizarre spiritual enemy (the postmodernist neo-Marxists) were attempting to undermine society using gender pronouns as a way to introduce thought crime, would they really chosen this issue as a battleground? A better explanation is that people think they're doing something good by getting all het up about pronouns, but actually they're just wasting everyone's time. If on the other hand, someone was trying to concoct a myth about society being undermined by people who want to restrict freedom of speech, in order to curry favour with a large audience of impressionable people who felt that their needs were not being met at the expense of protecting minorities, then picking an issue that doesn't matter at all, distorting the facts, and making a massive deal out of it would be precisely the strategy you would use. Hence JP and the gender pronoun farce.

His position on this doesn't align with an analytical/objective view of the facts, but it does fit neatly with a conspiracy theory view which might easily be held by someone who consistently believes fairy tales over facts. 

Post edited at 20:17
3
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

My brain.

And the people I know.

Post edited at 20:17
2
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to cb294:

> Barneys links unfortunately have been a bit of an own goal. 

> His point about these topics being valid subjects for proper science are nevertheless correct, as is his assessment of JP as a scientific nonentity - at least as far he bases his ideas on biology - and a dog whistle alt right agitator. 

>

  Are you saying he is "alt right" as in "The alt-right, or alternative right, is a loosely-connected and somewhat ill-defined subset of American and European third positionists, composed chiefly of white supremacists, neo-nazis, neo-fascists, and other fringe hate groups."

And if so how do you demonstrate that?

Post edited at 20:19
Stichtplate on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to cb294:

I was more making a somewhat dickish point about a presence on google scholar being no guarantee of scientific validity or any measure of intellectual rigour.

Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> I don't think you're representing the pronoun issue accurately, I think you like JP and believe what he says even when it's a simple matter to see that he's not telling the truth. I'm not supporting the UoT position, but I think there's a lot less certainty about this issue than you make out.

> I posted this stuff earlier on, but I'll post it again:

> He's generated a huge amount of interest and publicity on the basis that this law compels him to use ridiculous pronouns, but does he even understand the law he's so angry about? 

> What he's saying about the law fits neatly with the postmodern neo-Marxist conspiracy theory, but not so well with what lawyers say about the law. I don't think he's looking at the facts of the matter objectively, I think he's twisting the facts about the world to fit his distorted vision of what he thinks is in it. Recall that we're talking about a guy who still believes in the Bible and Jung, even though these are regarded as fairy stories by anyone who cares about understanding the world objectively.

>

  You are twisting the story here. The two lawyers who objected to his view were hardly neutral observers!!

  What do you mean ,"he believes in the bible and Jung". He doesn't believe the biblical stories are literally true. He believes that they contain important truths.  Is that controversial?

Regardless of how the term cultural marxism came into being or whether it is some form of conspiracy, which is not JP's argument as far as I can tell, is it your position that the views of the radical left on culture are independent of marxist thought?

TobyA on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

If by 'Marxist thought' you mean what Marx wrote, then yeah, there really isn't much connection between 19th century dialectical materialism and modern day culture wars. 

1
TobyA on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster: you're calling people charlatans and saying they don't understand stuff, so I'm just wondering where your certainty comes from.

 

2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> And can we take a step back here? How many times in your life have you ever been required to change the pronoun you were using about another person. For me, it's none. It's a total non-issue.

Well then forget about it Jon.

This debate is very little to do with Peterson ant more or neo-Marxists or gender pronouns. FYI I know 2 transgender people, they both think its bullshit and would prefer to be called the by their names.

It's just a sideshow, created by the weak in an attempt to destroy the strong.  It's an attempt to shut down debate because they might have their preconceptions challenged, the little babes.

Have you got anything to say about the actual debate we were having before it got hijacked by a neo-Marxist postmodernist child desperate to prove his intellect?

 

4
cb294 - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Stichtplate:

Which is obviously true. As the Sam Harris example discussed above shows, you can even get a paper in Plos One without actually doing any science.....

OK, it is Plos One, I know (I sometimes edit papers for this journal, which is largely better than its reputation, but at least I try to weed out the junk before pestering reviewers....).j

CB

1
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

I said I'd digest your last post to me, so I'll try to tie that up. I'd much rather chat about how wrong (my other bete noir) Dan Dennett is about consciousness than any more about JP and associated political gubbins!

1) I'm not convinced by the analogy with black sprinters that we should expect a transition from radical unfairness a century ago to total fairness to be complete. The obvious analogy to me is the transition from slavery - lower base for sure, but not something that can simply be righted by the simple ability to run faster once allowed into the race. Probably best to say that using the timescale isn't a good argument, which I'm perfectly happy to concede!

2) When I talk about "fairness" I use that word because I mean it. I do not mean equality of outcome. I expect that in a perfectly fair society there would be more male CEOs, more female nurses, etc. But I don't think that the gender differences would be as stark as it is today. Society as it is takes natural differences in gender and then imposes an unnecessary and limiting set of expectations on boys and girls which exaggerates these differences and also leads to unfair outcomes such as men and women being paid differently for the same work. You didn't like the Twitter study in the R4 programme, fine, but there was a striking piece of evidence in the book sent to publishers under two pseudonyms, one male and one female - and some more. It looks to me that rather like those who try their hardest to see gender bias wherever they look, you have a political motivation to deny it, even when it's staring you in the face.

3) All the stuff about how the human brain may be making Baysian inferences about the world is fascinating and compelling. It chimes with the stuff I learnt in vision science as an undergrad (I trained recently so I was reading up to date stuff). But I'm not really sure that it's useful for thinking about prejudice or bias in society. We know unfairness we experience it, and unfairness is bad for our society. We should be making policies that reduce unfairness

 

Just a little extra point about the rock/blowjob stuff. I don't believe that humans are just layers of Pavlovian reflexes, I appreciate that that's a ludicrously simplistic view. I'm with Pinker on this! The point I was making was that you don't need to introduce the supernatural concept of free will to explain the behaviour of mammals, including humans.

Post edited at 20:59
1
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> If by 'Marxist thought' you mean what Marx wrote, then yeah, there really isn't much connection between 19th century dialectical materialism and modern day culture wars. 

I don't. Arguably there is not much connection between dialectical materialism and many of the marxist movements of the 20th century, but they would be nevertheless be regarded as marxist. As you well know, "marxism" has been reinterpreted so many times that it has a very broad meaning. Do you think there is not much connection between the cultural views of the current radical left and the views of 20th century marxists?

Post edited at 21:13
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

What certainty, that this particular brand of postmodernism is bullshit?

The answer to that question is obvious. I had to think about it for 2 minutes and its of little use to anyone.

The debate isn't about Hume's Guillotine or Moore's natural fallacy or Derrida's post-structuralism. You can argue the semantics of those all day and its gonna help precisely no one.

6
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

>   You are twisting the story here. The two lawyers who objected to his view were hardly neutral observers!!

Well at least they're lawyers! That doesn't make them necessarily right, but JPs claims about the law are fears and not facts as he presents them.

>   What do you mean ,"he believes in the bible and Jung". He doesn't believe the biblical stories are literally true. He believes that they contain important truths.  Is that controversial?

He believes that science is a surface level understanding contained within a deeper metaphysical structure, the deep truth of which is described through the metaphorical content of Bible stories. (I've already posted the link, it's a Dave Rubin interview where he says that Sam Harris must believe in Christian morality otherwise he'd rob banks).

To anyone who cares about understanding reality through evidence, this is complete rubbish. The Bible is a surface level phenomenon and the deep truth is that we are all made of atoms in a universe that doesn't give two hoots about our moral choices.

> Regardless of how the term cultural marxism came into being or whether it is some form of conspiracy, which is not JP's argument as far as I can tell, is it your position that the views of the radical left on culture are independent of marxist thought?

I don't know what you mean by the radical left in this context, nor "independent of Marxist thought". Of course Marxists are influenced by Marx. Is that what you're asking?

The part I don't believe is that "the bloody Marxists" lost the battle to empower the proletariat and moved on to minorities as some kind of bizarre sociological sidestep to continue fighting some theoretical battle with the capitalist establishment.

What I believe is that minorities - specifically blacks and gays - were horrifically oppressed historically and that the necessary and successful battle for equal rights has resulted in some over-reach/excesses and bad behaviour from those who think they're doing something good. And I think that this specific sub-strand of left-wing politics has got absolutely f*ck all to do with Marx or Derrida!

 

1
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> This debate is very little to do with Peterson ant more or neo-Marxists or gender pronouns.

I enjoyed reading it all yesterday! But, I just can't let JPs dishonest re-telling of that stuff stand as if it's fact when it isn't. 

> Have you got anything to say about the actual debate we were having before it got hijacked by a neo-Marxist postmodernist child desperate to prove his intellect?

The bit I was most interested in was when Dennett's name came up. I think he's a nob!* If there's a bit somewhere up there that you're particularly keen on, then maybe - but as you say, there's a fair amount of crap to wade through now...and it was all going so well

 

 

 

*You should be familiar with this tactic now, and yes, I am doing it as joke...but I do think he's a bell-end.

1
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

The truth is out there somewhere!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MG7y8J0DXhU

1
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> He believes that science is a surface level understanding contained within a deeper metaphysical structure, the deep truth of which is described through the metaphorical content of Bible stories. (I've already posted the link, it's a Dave Rubin interview where he says that Sam Harris must believe in Christian morality otherwise he'd rob banks).

>

  I though he was saying that morality is a function of evolutionary "dictats" which have been articulated in biblical (and other) stories. His point on Sam Harris is (from memory) that Sam Harris has evolved psychologically to recognise that robbing banks is not generally very smart, and Christianity has articulated that evolution.

  Maybe bollocks but it's not at odds with  science, atoms and all that stuff.

>

> I don't know what you mean by the radical left in this context, nor "independent of Marxist thought". Of course Marxists are influenced by Marx. Is that what you're asking?

>

  Is this what you are denying?

> The part I don't believe is that "the bloody Marxists" lost the battle to empower the proletariat and moved on to minorities as some kind of bizarre sociological sidestep to continue fighting some theoretical battle with the capitalist establishment.

>  And I think that this specific sub-strand of left-wing politics has got absolutely f*ck all to do with Marx or Derrida!

> Not a fan of Sam Harris then! JP's circumstantial evidence is pretty good, that the same people and their disciples who were "conventional" marxists transmogrified into "identity politicians". I give you that , as far as I can tell by my limited listening, he hasn't come up with a smoking gun.

 

Post edited at 21:47
TobyA on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

I'm just left with this sense that you've found a, for the want of a better term, public intellectual who you agree with politically and are then working backwards from there. 

I just wondered if you knew Peterson's work from having studied psychology at uni or some such (like your favourite band: "I was into them before they were famous"), or came across his views on cultural Marxists and feminists, found it chimed with you, and read up on his psychology afterwards? 

2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

I appreciated your last 2 posts.

I can't decide whether to relentlessly take the piss out of some of today's arguments or just come back tomorrow.

That f*cking prick has pissed me off.

Hey, Barney! Brink your f*cking ice-pick along to the next argument or does that offend your Trotskyist principles?

6
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

Surfing the internet a year and a half ago looking at SJW bullshit.

My favourite band is Rush.

2
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

And on Sam Harris, for me he's a mixed bag. Totally with him on free will and consciousness, totally with him on a "scientific" view of morality (although the criticisms that he isn't saying anything remotely new and he's stretching the meaning of the word science well past breaking point are perfectly fair) and I was with him all the way through his discussion with Benatar on "antinatalism". (I posted a link to JP and Benatar at the start, just to illustrate that JP can find himself in Cathy Newman's shoes when he's intellectually catastrophically outgunned).

But for me, he talks shite on: Isreal/US foreign policy, Islam, SJWs/Freedom of Speech and AI.

1
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

>   I though he was saying that morality is a function of evolutionary "dictats"...

If you want to discuss this, best to dig out the link and see what he actually said.

>   Is this what you are denying?

That hasn't helped define what you mean by the "hard left" and what you mean by "influenced by Marx", so I still don't understand what you're saying.

 

1
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> That hasn't helped define what you mean by the "hard left" and what you mean by "influenced by Marx", so I still don't understand what you're saying.

>

  The term I used was "radical left" by which I mean those who want not just to improve or change capitalism, the liberal democrat political system and the cultural values and modes of thought that underpin both, but to overthrow and destroy them.

  Didn't Marx want to overthrow capitalism and the existing political structures?

Post edited at 22:12
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

The bit I don't buy is that the focus on the minorities and "the oppressed" is some underhand way of progressing this ideology. I can see that the same people might be keen on both, but that doesn't mean that the minorities stuff is a tactic in a wider battle. People who feel alienated from the capitalist establishment are likely to be drawn to both political ideas, true ("f*ck the system, man"), but the nonsense conspiracy is that minorities are being used as a proxy for the proletariat. That part is just a metaphor made up by the Brietbart Wankers.

2
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> The bit I don't buy is that the focus on the minorities and "the oppressed" is some underhand way of progressing this ideology. I can see that the same people might be keen on both, but that doesn't mean that the minorities stuff is a tactic in a wider battle. People who feel alienated from the capitalist establishment are likely to be drawn to both political ideas, true ("f*ck the system, man"), but the nonsense conspiracy is that minorities are being used as a proxy for the proletariat. That part is just a metaphor made up by the Brietbart Wankers.

  Why on earth wouldn't it be used as a proxy for the "proletariat"? It's totally logical and circumstantially we can see it all around us in much of the left's abandonment and disdain for the (values of) the  traditional working class (aka .chavs).

  The radical left of the 20th century was authoritarian and undemocratic in the name of economic justice. Why would the 21st century radical left be any different in the name of "social justice". I can't imagine why you think the breibart folk made this up. It's been a commonplace for a couple of decades.

  You seem to be hung up on the idea of it as a "conspiracy". It's a funny leftish thing (well, maybe not). Owen Jones denounces the revival of free market liberalism in the 1970s as a "conspiracy". Hence, presumably, being anxious about the new left being described as a "conspiracy". Neither the revival of economic liberalism in the '70s, or the triumph of social liberalism in the '60s were really "conspiracies" in the sense of being coordinated,and probably neither is the modern SJW radical left. But they have similarities in that they were developed and proselytised in specific academic institutions and blossomed from there and then were taken up by the young and then by the media (less so economic liberalism). Both of those "won". That is why I think you are being complacent in regarding all this as a storm in a teacup.

Post edited at 22:45
2
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

Cheers PMP, saved me the bother and better said than I could have done it. It also has to be point out that followers of the postmodernist f*ck-nuts like Derrida have come to dominate the humanities by self-replication and it is from the humanities that educators and social activists come from. Now they are further dominating by removing any dissenting voices.

Post edited at 22:54
6
Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

>   Why on earth wouldn't it be used as a proxy for the "proletariat"?

That's twice in a row you've used that useless rhetorical technique.

> It's totally logical and circumstantially we can see it all around us in much of the left's abandonment and disdain for the value of traditional working class (aka .chavs).

Phenomenon: we see some people, "SJWs", seemingly obsessed with the idea of the oppression of minority groups by the white/straight/male establishment.

Two explanations: 

1. Recent decades have seen great triumphs in establishing equal rights for minorities. Thus, fighting for these causes appears to be a good thing to do, and something you can "win" at. This makes for a great way to impress your peers, to be cool. Being political, fighting for the oppressed, f*ck the system, man. Sounds great. That's why 19 year olds are attracted to the "SJW" scene as a way to make an identity for themselves, and that's it.

2. The Marxists' battle to empower the proletariat was lost. Rather than give up on Marxist ideology, the Marxists needed to find a new way to fight the same fight, and came up with the idea of hijacking the equal rights movements as a cover for Marxism.

Now to me, one explanation is compelling, and the other is shit.

>   The radical left of the 20th century was authoritarian and undemocratic in the name of economic justice. Why would the 21st century radical left be any different in the name of "social justice". I can't imagine why you thin the breibart folk made this up. It's been a commonplace for a couple of decades.

Because it's a shit explanation for the phenomenon.

>   You seem to be hung up on the idea of it as a "conspiracy". 

I use "conspiracy" in this context because what JP and others are doing is manufacturing links between unrelated things, in a similar way to your average crackpot conspiracy theorist. I'm belittling their silly ideas by comparing them to 9/11 "truthers" etc.

> Neither the revival of economic liberalism in the '70s, or the triumph of social liberalism in the '60s were really "conspiracies" in the sense of being coordinated,and probably neither is the modern SJW radical left. But they have similarities in that they were developed and proselytised in specific academic institutions and blossomed from there and then were taken up by the young and then by the media (less so economic liberalism). Both of those "won". That is why I think you are being complacent in regarding all this as a storm in a teacup.

I simply cannot envisage a future in which serious harm occurs in western societies due to the "SJW" movement. Seriously, what's it up against? We live in a world of huge globalised companies that are bigger than governments, powerful democracies that elect reality TV stars to run them, the rising economic superpower of China unrestrained by regard for human rights, the planet's heating up...and yet I should be worried about a 19 year old with brightly coloured hair and multiple nose piercings telling me off about gender pronouns. Are you sure it isn't absurdly obvious why I remain skeptical?!

4
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

  I would humbly suggest that asking why something that circumstantially appears to have happened wouldn’t happen is a rather more valid “rhetorical device” than simply dismissing something as “shit” against the circumstantial evidence.

   When we have academics institutions, the media, and big companies failing to speak honestly about these issues or even ,in the case of the former rolling  over in face of the extremists, we have no room for complacency. Accuse me of scaremongering but I doubt many early 20th century bourgeois oculists saw hitler or lenin coming.

6
TobyA on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

Marx thought the collapse of capitalism was inherent in its structure. The central criticism of his thesis is it's failure to predict. 

1
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> If I had half the good doctor's brains and talent, I'd be twice as clever as I am now. 

Do you know what mate? F*ck this shit. I'm off to watch some more of "the good doctor" to cheer me up.

One last thing:

5
Rock The Lobster - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to BarneyLoosemore:

Hey Barney, what illusion can you produce from your intellectual sack of shite to say about this?

> However, from this paragraph I can take a reasonable guess as to what your faculty is like. I bet you lot sit in your ivory towers musing on bullshit, like is it morally justifiable to dunk my Rich Tea or is that unnecessarily cruel? I bet you have no idea what a real struggle is apart from having to finish some assignment whilst you're nursing a hangover, because you pissed your student loan against a wall the night before. Or did mummy and daddy pay for your expensive education? You are in a place of total privilege, yet you lot moan as if you're under the lash of some kind of Wahhabist nightmare. What the f*ck have you ever really done? Onsighted a VS? I piss all over your grades and I don't reckon that's because I'm physically stronger and I'm over 50, over 15 stones and smoke like a chimney. I bet you've never had to struggle in your life, it looks like that from your photos, you've got plenty of expensive gear and plenty of time to use it, in plenty of beautiful locations. Come down to my level to have a small taste of what the world can really be like and like the vast majority of people in this country, I think I'm still privileged to have it this easy, it could be a shite sight worse.

You've pissed me off, but I suspect that gives you a warm glow inside, doesn't it? You've derailed our debate, but that was your intention all along, wasn't it. Congratulations, you anencephalous follower of moronic trends. I hope you're still in your ivory tower when it comes crashing down. I might just be the one outside, shrieking with laughter as I push it over.

Post edited at 23:22
7
Postmanpat on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> Marx thought the collapse of capitalism was inherent in its structure. The central criticism of his thesis is it's failure to predict. 

And ‘“marxists” therefore tried to give it a push. Read my previous post. Marxism long ago took on a life beyond Marx.

Jon Stewart - on 08 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

>   I would humbly suggest that asking why something that circumstantially appears to have happened wouldn’t happen

It - the hijacking of the equal rights movement as a cover for a Marxist attempt to bring down Western democracy - doesn't appear to have happened! Not circumstantially, not at all. 

> is a rather more valid “rhetorical device” than simply dismissing something as “shit” against the circumstantial evidence.

Perhaps I should dress up my arguments with a bit more la-di-da then? But, as is completely obvious, just like last time I was accused of "simply stating" something (not by you!), I didn't *simply* dismiss anything as "shit", I set out the context in which it is obvious that a particular narrative being used to explain what is happening in the world is "shit". If I describe explanation 2 as "not compelling" rather than "shit" does that help?

>    When we have academics institutions, the media, and big companies failing to speak honestly about these issues or even ,in the case of the former rolling  over in face of the extremists, we have no room for complacency. Accuse me of scaremongering but I doubt many early 20th century bourgeois oculists saw hitler or lenin coming.

I would describe myself as pretty pessimistic, I have a bit of a Rustin Cohle view of the world*. But I'm not gripped by this existential angst that society is collapsing at the hands of the Followers Of Derrida and that the Postmodern Stalin, currently being incubated in the Universities and public institutions is going to rush to power and take away my comfortable, liberal modern society unless I rise up against the tyranny of "the left". I just think it's total bollocks, sorry!

 

 

*https://tinyurl.com/y9pd6rrc

Post edited at 23:48
2
TobyA on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

Doesn't seem to be much debate. There's a little backslapping sesh going on between you and the two other people who agree with you, and then posts like yours above where you are shouting, a bit sweary and basically strutting, flexing your metaphorical intellectual muscles for all to admire.

And you wonder why no women are interested...

3
aln - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> honestly don't remember anyone else on here apologising when they've said something that they shouldn't have

I apologised to you on here the other week! 

Rock The Lobster - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to aln:

Yes, you did indeed aln, Apologies for my absentmindedness.

2
Rock The Lobster - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to TobyA:

> And you wonder why no women are interested...

I know why they're not interested, they've told me. It's because of the smarmy self-righteous commentators… like you.

"And you think you're so clever and classless and free,

But you're still fucking peasants as far as I can see."

Post edited at 01:22
7
TobyA on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> It's because of the smarmy self-righteous commentators… like you.

I guess that's better than being a "cuck" for disagreeing with you as I was last week, so things are moving up to merely just being smarmy and self righteous this week!  

I remain a little sceptical that that's the sole reason women don't want to get involved in a discussion on Peterson and his fans though...

 

 

 

1
MonkeyPuzzle - on 09 Feb 2018
In reply to Rock The Lobster:

> You've pissed me off, but I suspect that gives you a warm glow inside, doesn't it? You've derailed our debate, but that was your intention all along, wasn't it. Congratulations, you anencephalous follower of moronic trends. I hope you're still in your ivory tower when it comes crashing down. I might just be the one outside, shrieking with laughter as I push it over.

Anyway, back to your concern with emotionally fragile snowflakes...

1
Pan Ron - on 10 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Not sure if this has already been linked to, but somewhat of a clarification of JP's views on this recent Joe Rogan podcast.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6T7pUEZfgdI

1
TobyA on 10 Feb 2018
In reply to Pan Ron:

I've got a bit past the bit where he compares people getting rich under capitalism to the increasing weight of a star or the size of trees in the Amazon. Even he seems to accept that's a bit facile, but is it likely to get any better?

edit: not a bit facile. Utterly facile.

edit2: he just mentioned "postmodern neo-marxist". Bingo!

Post edited at 13:13
2
Offwidth - on 10 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

Which academic institutions do you think rolled over in the face of extremists? All I see is Univerity management not believing in the academic freedom of their workforce and applying dictats that suit their controlling conservatism the best. Universities in the western world have been taken over by managerialism not leftism and I think the extreme left has never had so little influence. Those managers in JP's University in Canada are miles away from Marx. Money and metrics top their concerns, despite the linguistic dictatorship.

2
winhill - on 11 Feb 2018
In reply to Postmanpat:

> Regardless of how the term cultural marxism came into being or whether it is some form of conspiracy, which is not JP's argument as far as I can tell, is it your position that the views of the radical left on culture are independent of marxist thought?

Although people now use it as a synonym for political correctness, originally it was formed for 2 reasons. Firstly as a form of expression for people who have an identity although they don't conform to the Tenets of the Faith (cultural jews etc), but secondly as a piss take of Cultural Materialism.

Hard to believe that anyone would claim that this had nothing to do with Marxism:

"The term was coined by Williams, who used it to describe a theoretical blending of leftist culturalism and Marxist analysis"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_materialism_(cultural_studies)

But Peterson is by no means the only public intellectual who has criticised PoMo for being (i) Marxist or (ii) responsible for epistemic relativism that has spawned the Post Truth era, this is Kenan Malik (ex SWP + RCP)  on the subject:

"When I suggested earlier that the idea of ‘alternative facts’ draws upon ‘a set of concepts that in recent decades have been used by radicals’, I was not suggesting that Kellyanne Conway, or Steve Bannon, still less Donald Trump, have been reading up on Foucault or Baudrillard, or that the aim of the postmodern left was, as it is for Conway and Bannon and Trump, to make lies acceptable. It is rather that sections of academia and of the left have in recent decades helped create a culture in which relativised views of facts and knowledge seem untroubling, and hence made it easier for the reactionary right not just to re-appropriate but also to promote reactionary ideas. It is also that, having spent decades promoting relativism and the politics of identity, the left is in no position to challenge the identitarian right."

 

1
winhill - on 14 Feb 2018
In reply to winhill:

Interesting article yesterday on that darling of the alt-right, Noam Chomsky:

But Chomsky’s critique goes further, in a direction that doesn’t get nearly as much press as his charges of obscurantism and overuse of insular jargon. Chomsky claims that far from offering radical new ways of conceiving the world, Postmodern thought serves as an instrument of oppressive power structures. It's an interesting assertion given some recent arguments that “post-truth” postmodernism is responsible for the rise of the self-described “alt-right” and the rapid spread of fake information as a tool for the current U.S. ruling party seizing power.

Chomsky gets more specific. Most post-war French philosophers, he alleges, have been Stalinists or Maoists (he uses the example of Julia Kristeva), and have uncritically embraced authoritarian state communism despite its documented crimes and abuses, while rejecting other modes of philosophical thought like logical positivism that accept the validity of the scientific method. 

http:// www.openculture.com/2018/02/noam-chomsky-explains-whats-wrong-with-postmodern-philosophy-french-intellectuals.html

RomTheBear on 18 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

I had never heard of this guy before and just saw the interview.

Not too sure what is so extraordinary with it, the guy is a classic moron, makes illogical arguments and spout lies one after the other, and the interviewer is just totally useless.

The whole debate that ensues is pretty typical, right-wing reactionary nutters pointing the fingers at left-wing reactionary nutters, as an excuse for their reactionary views and vice versa.

6
winhill - on 18 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Tomorrow morning at 9am BBC R4

Fascism and the Enlightenment with Steven Pinker

Start the Week

Humanity is flourishing and the Enlightenment has worked, declares Steven Pinker. The Harvard psychologist has looked across health, prosperity, safety, peace and happiness, and sees signs that all areimproving. He tells Andrew Marr how Enlightenment attitudes to reason and science have made this the best age in which to live. But Enlightenment values are under attack and Pinker calls for their vigorous defence. Dutch philosopher Rob Riemen also sees humanism under threat from fascism, with its politics of resentment and hatred of the life of the mind. But can reason, beauty and justice combat this threat? The neuroscientist Tali Sharot thinks reason and fear are not enough to make us change our minds. Only by understanding how the brain functions can we perfect the art of persuasion.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09rwszj

Reviewed by Andrew Marr here:

 https://www.standard.co.uk/comment/comment/cheer-up-the-apocalypse-isn-t-coming-and-life-s-getting-better-a3768606.html

Post edited at 21:08
winhill - on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to Jonny:

Pinker's being a busy boy this week, with his new book to promote, here on the 'war on science':

The waging of a "war on science" by right-wing know-nothings has become part of the conventional wisdom of the intelligentsia. Even some Republican stalwarts have come to disparage the GOP as "the party of stupid." Republican legislators have engaged in spectacles of inanity, such as when Sen. James Inhofe, chair of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, brought a snowball to the Senate floor in 2015 to dispute the fact of global warming...

Yet a contempt for science is neither new, lowbrow, nor confined to the political right. In his famous 1959 lecture "The Two Cultures and the Scientific Revolution," C.P. Snow commented on the disdain for science among educated Britons and called for a greater integration of science into intellectual life. In response to this overture, the literary critic F.R. Leavis wrote a rebuttal in 1962 that was so vituperative The Spectator had to ask Snow to promise not to sue for libel if they published the work.

https://www.chronicle.com/article/The-Intellectual-War-on/242538?key=VUoegFJonv4-gPdfGkNzj5JCle183igojXR00dEZ3a-K9X9t7CA8mtDo8K8vRcq4RlZLNE83ZGFLWmd1alAtTmRRVElPV3RrRkdFOU1acmFOcE5IbDFxWmV1cw

And here on identity politics:

Even the aspect of identity politics with a grain of justification—that a man cannot truly experience what it is like to be a woman, or a white person an African American—can subvert the cause of equality and harmony if it is taken too far, because it undermines one of the greatest epiphanies of the Enlightenment: that people are equipped with a capacity for sympathetic imagination, which allows them to appreciate the suffering of sentient beings unlike them. In this regard nothing could be more asinine than outrage against “cultural appropriation”—as if it’s a bad thing, rather than a good thing, for a white writer to try to convey the experiences of a black person, or vice versa.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/steven-pinker-identity-politics-is-an-enemy-of-reason-and-enlightenment-values/article/2011595

 

Pan Ron - on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to RomTheBear:

> the guy is a classic moron, makes illogical arguments and spout lies one after the other

I suspect you would have also declared Galileo or Darwin to be morons too. 

Just because you don't understand what he is discussing or, to be charitable, fail to recognise the limited scope of TV interviews (and interaction from the interviewer) doesn't really allow him to provide more flesh on the bones of the issues he typically discusses at length, doesn't make him the moron.

Such a sweeping generalisation of someone who undeniably is cited and respected in academia as much as public life, and of whom you by your own admission clearly know little about, really says more about yourself than it does about him.

 

Post edited at 06:02
5
RomTheBear on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to Pan Ron:

> I suspect you would have also declared Galileo or Darwin to be morons too. 

Galileo and Darwin had rather implacable logic. At least they did not use syllogisms and gross misuse of statistics to make their point.

They used what we call "the scientific method", quite far away from the syllogistic drivel that came out of this guy's mouth.

Btw I don't believe he really is a moron, I believe he is just someone who found a market of disillusioned men to sell his snake oil to.

Post edited at 07:26
3
Thrudge on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to Pan Ron:

> .... someone who undeniably is cited

Yes, but only 9724 times.  Are there any academics in the house who could tell us if this is a big number or a little one?

 

Thrudge on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to RomTheBear:

> ... I believe he is just someone who found a market of disillusioned men to sell his snake oil to.

And he did it by putting all his lectures on Youtube for free.  The crafty bastard.

 

RomTheBear on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> And he did it by putting all his lectures on Youtube for free.  The crafty bastard.

Not sure what difference, if any, it makes. 

1
RomTheBear on 19 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

Seriously, watch this and tell me he is not a total lunatic :  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kj7VgBnQNUc

It was entertaining at least !

 

4
Thrudge on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to RomTheBear:

OK, I watched it and I'm not seeing any lunacy.  To me, it seemed reasonable and cogent.  I can understand that there may be individual points with which you might take issue, but 'lunacy' seems inapplicable.

I wonder if this is a comprehension issue?  I hope you will accept that I'm not trying to be offensive here.  I originally came across JP when I heard him in discussion with Sam Harris.  I had no idea who he was and I was utterly baffled by his arguments - I could barely follow what he was saying.  But he was disagreeing quite profoundly with Harris (whose work I admire) so I took some time out to look into JP.  Rather than going to commentators, I went to the source and watched a lot of his lectures.  It wasn't easy, but I got a grip on what he was saying reasonably quickly and found his knowledge and insights very compelling. 

Perhaps JP's verbal style obscures his meaning for some people?  It's a style I enjoy now, but it does have something in common with a runaway train.  He thinks fast, he talks fast, and sometimes he leaps from one point to another.

 

2
Pan Ron - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> Perhaps JP's verbal style obscures his meaning for some people?  It's a style I enjoy now, but it does have something in common with a runaway train.  He thinks fast, he talks fast, and sometimes he leaps from one point to another.

I think this was Eric Weinstein's viewpoint too.  Clearly no slouch, with an IQ of 160+, Eric admitted to needing some time, and the hurdling of substantial scepticism, to get a grip on Peterson's points...but he did end up proclaiming Peterson to be on to something, and possibly one of the great thinkers of our time. 

An unorthodox delivery style for sure.  No doubt that in itself, let alone the fact that he is going against the grain of progressive thinking, is enough to get people's backs up (and they clearly do, declaring him, among so many other things, Alt-Right despite being hated by self-proclaimed Alt-Righters). 

I had an epiphany not so long ago, when I actually sat down and read some media from, and listened to some of the individuals, I had long dismissed as bigots or idiots.  Only to discover they were actually damn sharp and arguing from an evidence or logic base a lot stronger than the views I had wanted to be true.  Putting one's ideology to one side makes people like Peterson easier to handle.  Certainly being offended, or simply not liking what he has to say, shouldn't be grounds for declaring his viewpoints null-and-void or the rantings of a fool. 

Thrudge on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Pan Ron:

> Putting one's ideology to one side

I certainly had to do that with JP's lectures on religion (which I'm still working through).  As a rather militant atheist, I took the view that a lot of it is nonsense and much of it is immoral.  My views on the existence of God and Christ are unchanged, and I still see a lot of immorality in the Bible, but it's been quite an eye opener to discover that there is in fact some value in it.  It's a distinctly uncomfortable position to be in   

 

Jon Stewart - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Pan Ron:

> I had an epiphany not so long ago, when I actually sat down and read some media from, and listened to some of the individuals, I had long dismissed as bigots or idiots.  Only to discover they were actually damn sharp and arguing from an evidence or logic base a lot stronger than the views I had wanted to be true. 

My experience with JP was the exact opposite. I first heard him talk about aspects of human behaviour and psychology from an evolutionary perspective, and found him compelling both in content and style. He really nailed the understanding of the human being as a complex animal, evolved to socialise in order to get things done. I quite liked his 'life advice' too - he can be practical and down to earth when he's in the mood.

But I listened more and more, and heard more and more of his dragons and bible bullshit, his love of Jung, and then his crass generalisations that don't apply in any objective sense to the real world but serve very well as a pseudo-scientific justification of social conservatism (there is a natural/god-intended order which we ought to follow, put roughly), and concluded that the guy's a prat.

> Putting one's ideology to one side makes people like Peterson easier to handle.  Certainly being offended, or simply not liking what he has to say, shouldn't be grounds for declaring his viewpoints null-and-void or the rantings of a fool. 

Much of the time there's just a total lack of rigour to what he says (the Cathy Newman interview is full of them), and there's an incredibly forceful ideology that motivates so much of it. So much like those he opposes, he's transparently working backwards from ideological conclusions which he then tries to substantiate with what he makes look as much like evidence as he can (but isn't). Always best to try to leave one's ideology behind if you're trying to have a discussion about what is actually going on in the world, and this is precisely where JP falls down. He's an ideologue and while his academic work might be perfectly fine, his public speaking on the problems of society today are just ideological polemics. As such, they're fine if you subscribe to his ideology (which certainly isn't alt-right, but it is socially conservative and individualistic); but if you don't, it really, really grates.

I'm perfectly happy to give you scores of specific examples, but this comes at the end of a long  double-thread about whether or not JP is dickhead, in which I've made the points in great detail. You're very welcome to trawl through it all!

3
Jon Stewart - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> My views on the existence of God and Christ are unchanged, and I still see a lot of immorality in the Bible, but it's been quite an eye opener to discover that there is in fact some value in it.  It's a distinctly uncomfortable position to be in   

Do you think that you've discovered there is in fact some value in the bible because:

a) JP has interpreted and framed bible stories in a way that resonates with ideas about the world you already held

or

b) there is some actual value in the bible stories, that exists regardless of the specific interpretation (one of a very large set of interpretations) which aligns with and is motivated by JP's social conservatism?

Is it the bible, or is it JP's world view imposed on the bible that you see value in?

1
Escher - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Can't it be a bit of both? 

Jon Stewart - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Escher:

I suppose it could, but given how little meaning i can glean from bible stories reading them on their own, and how diverse the interpretations of the bible are from the peace-and-sandals jumble sale brigade to the god-hates-fags conservative right in the US, I find b) pretty implausible.

1
pasbury on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to RomTheBear:

Good god that’s horrible; such a perversion of language; to use language to lie and to disguise it as intelligent with his body language.

Post edited at 22:38
Escher - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

To be honest that sounds like willful myopia, I'm an atheist and I can't say for certain what the original source is for a lot of what Jesus supposedly said but there really was a great deal of wisdom in what he purportedly espoused. Treat your neighbour as yourself, he without sin cast the first stone, turn the other cheek and quite a lot more. Whether it was common sense then too, or a 2000 year old Little Book of Meditations and a bit trite even in its day I think it is not controversial to say there are many today who would benefit a little from taking some of that in. And JP, who I am not a fan of, also frames some stories in a compelling and a thought provoking way. So your argument seems a bit binary when some of both seems likely as does some of your arguments and some of those that support JP. You seem to have taken a position and are excluding everything else when there's a bit of truth on all sides in this discussion. 

1
Thrudge on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

Super quick response because it's late and I'm tired: I don't know.  Excellent question, I'll have to give it some thought.  If I get time, I'll respond tomorrow.  Thanks for the input.  

Jon Stewart - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Escher:

Maybe you can help explain how the peace-and-sandals jumble sale brigade derive their ideology from the  same source as the god-hates-fags lot? Have one lot got the "right" interpretation, and the other the "wrong" one? If so, by what standard?

My view is that one view is right (peace and jumble sales) and the other is wrong (god hates fags), and the standard by which I judge the two interpretations is one based on a secular moral philosophy. In other words, the bible is word...

 

* I just finished writing this post and then lost it all.

Post edited at 23:04
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Jon Stewart - on 20 Feb 2018
In reply to Escher:

> My view is that one view is (morally, not theologically) right (peace and jumble sales) and the other is wrong (god hates fags), and the standard by which I judge the two interpretations is one based on a secular moral philosophy. In other words, the bible is word salad onto which meaning is imposed according to other beliefs. 

I can't see that the bible introduces moral content, because if it did, then those who claim to follow it would show some consistency in the types of behaviour they exhibit. But they don't. Some give up their worldly possessions and help the needy while others are...Donald Trump!

I can't see any good reasons to believe that the bible has any meaningful content, rather it's a load of ambiguous words collected together in a context which demands people take it very very seriously. And then you have structures that give certain people authority to declare what the ambiguous words mean. A terribly dangerous thing to exist in the world, surely? Get rid, get rid, get rid!

Post edited at 23:16
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Escher - on 21 Feb 2018

Morning!

I don't disagree with much of what you say but you are arguing with a point I didn't really make. Much of the US based fundamental Christian right are so far away from what appears to what Jesus actually said as to be laughable (with the caveat that I don't know if he existed or if he said what I think he said), they seem to be quite bigotted, treat your neighbour as yourself only counts if you aren't black, hispanic or gay etc. and violence is an okay answer for lots of things. But to me that is not actually a misinterpretation of what the bible says (the new testament sandal wearing stuff which I think is where the only value is)  but cognitive dissonance writ large in people who think they are devoutly religious but are also unknowingly really nasty people. 

I don't think that discounts that there does seem to be some useful wisdom written in the bible as I explained in my previous post. That was the point I was making, that there are some good bits to take out (whether they were novel then or not - I don't know) and the fact that lots of arseholes ignore those and claim to be devout and then do what the hell they like doesn't really negate that fact.

I'm not entirely sure how I ended up defending the bible ;-) as I say I agree with nearly everything you say it's just those points were not what I was debating. I'm an atheist and a humanist and I guess the points that I think are useful from the bible are humanist and IMO that is where Jesus on the whole was coming from and the god stuff is an allegory for human potential in this life (not that there is an afterlife!). He was a humanist much like Buddha, it's the organised stuff that messes it all up and the need for some to have power over others.

 

 

Thrudge on 21 Feb 2018
In reply to Jon Stewart:

> Do you think that you've discovered there is in fact some value in the bible because:

> a) JP has interpreted and framed bible stories in a way that resonates with ideas about the world you already held

Possibly, although it's more like, "OK, I haven't heard that interpretation before, but it seems very plausible and the moral lesson is valid".  As opposed to my previous view, which was more like, "The Bible is BS".  This isn't a radical shift on my part, just an acknowledgement of some value rather than none.  I could still easily rant about the bad stuff, including Biblical moral values with which I do not agree.

 

> b) there is some actual value in the bible stories, that exists regardless of the specific interpretation (one of a very large set of interpretations) which aligns with and is motivated by JP's social conservatism?

JP's interpretation is one which chimes with my atheist/secularist/humanist standpoint.  I don't see value in other interpretations, e.g the fundamentalist ones.  JP has been called a gateway drug to Christianity, but for Christians I imagine he could just as plausibly be called a gateway drug to atheism.  It's a fascinating position.

Re his social conservatism, it seems to me to be of a very mild sort and it parallels my own, so yes, that's a factor in my acceptance of his ideas.  

 

> Is it the bible, or is it JP's world view imposed on the bible that you see value in?

I don't think the word 'imposed' is a fair description - it implies he's trying to hammer a square peg into a round hole.  To me, his interpretations seem reasonable, and I don't find it implausible that ancient peoples grappled with moral questions.  BTW, I'm with Escher when he says, "... the God stuff is an allegory for human potential".  (By which I mean this is what JP is saying, not what the Bible is saying).

Jon Stewart - on 22 Feb 2018
In reply to Escher:

> I don't think that discounts that there does seem to be some useful wisdom written in the bible as I explained in my previous post. That was the point I was making, that there are some good bits to take out...I think are useful from the bible are humanist and IMO that is where Jesus on the whole was coming from and the god stuff is an allegory for human potential in this life (not that there is an afterlife!). He was a humanist much like Buddha, it's the organised stuff that messes it all up and the need for some to have power over others.

I can't really disagree with any of that, but I have a problem with promoting the Bible as a reasonable place to look for 'wisdom'. I don't think there's any wisdom in platitudes about being nice to each other - wisdom for me is about understanding how the world works and how to make the best of it. The Bible only serves to make this more difficult by firstly establishing an entirely false world view, and then offering some banal and unachievable "moral guidance". I really dispute the idea that it is useful - once you've doubted the veracity of the source as the son of God, then it's just some bloke saying "be nice, everyone". To which my response might be "oh right. I was planning to be a total wanker, but now you've said that...".

Of the many things that annoy me about JP, his promotion of "ancient wisdom" is one of the biggies. There is no such thing as ancient wisdom. Once you understand the truth about the world, what it's made of and how it works, then you can use that knowledge to generate "wisdom". That's how we'll progress, not by combing through the Bible to find some platitude or other that isn't transparently bollocks.

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Jon Stewart - on 22 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> JP's interpretation is one which chimes with my atheist/secularist/humanist standpoint.  I don't see value in other interpretations, e.g the fundamentalist ones.  JP has been called a gateway drug to Christianity, but for Christians I imagine he could just as plausibly be called a gateway drug to atheism.  It's a fascinating position.

It's certainly a peculiar position! That stuff about science and rationality being surface level phenomena embedded in a deeper Christian metaphysics (Dave Rubin interview, I posted it ages ago) is just plain lunacy. It's the whole idea that there *are* fundamental moral truths (whether or not they're elucidated by Jesus or Buddha or whatever) that I find totally at odds with a rational world view.

> Re his social conservatism, it seems to me to be of a very mild sort and it parallels my own, so yes, that's a factor in my acceptance of his ideas.  

I don't think it's that mild. Stuff like "if you don't have kids by 40 you're a lost soul" is hardcore!

> I don't think the word 'imposed' is a fair description

I think it's a lot like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eTINdHfNQ3Y

 

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RomTheBear on 23 Feb 2018
In reply to Thrudge:

> OK, I watched it and I'm not seeing any lunacy.  To me, it seemed reasonable and cogent. 

Wow.

> I wonder if this is a comprehension issue?  I hope you will accept that I'm not trying to be offensive here.  I originally came across JP when I heard him in discussion with Sam Harris.  I had no idea who he was and I was utterly baffled by his arguments - I could barely follow what he was saying.  But he was disagreeing quite profoundly with Harris (whose work I admire) so I took some time out to look into JP.  Rather than going to commentators, I went to the source and watched a lot of his lectures.  It wasn't easy, but I got a grip on what he was saying reasonably quickly and found his knowledge and insights very compelling. 

If you understand him quickly it’s probably because its over simplistic drivel.

It’s the intellectual equivalent of junk food. Easy to ingest, tasty, but toxic, addictive, and nasty.

> Perhaps JP's verbal style obscures his meaning for some people?  It's a style I enjoy now, but it does have something in common with a runaway train.  He thinks fast, he talks fast, and sometimes he leaps from one point to another.

No, I find him really clear and easy to understand, entertaining, he is an excellent (brilliant) communicator, with a lot of charisma. that’s not the issue. The issue is is that he is a (very obvious) charlatan, so bleeding obvious in fact that it is laughable. None of his claims stand up to any sort of scrutiny, not even basic common sense in most cases, but those under his spell just stop thinking and swallow.

He is a sort of mix between a pseudo-scientist, pseudo-intellectual, and motivational guru for sexually frustrated angry young males. Goldmine there ! I’m sure he will sell a lot of books and do a lot of TED talks...

It just makes me sad that people actually fall for this crap.

Post edited at 01:28
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RomTheBear on 23 Feb 2018
In reply to pasbury:

> Good god that’s horrible; such a perversion of language; to use language to lie and to disguise it as intelligent with his body language.

You’d think it’s obvious, but apparently not too everyone...

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Bjartur i Sumarhus on 23 Feb 2018
In reply to RomTheBear:

In my local Waterstones yesterday in Canary Wharf and they have a dedicated table to his book right in the entrance with about 50 copies on it. It would be interesting to maybe watch how that table competes with the fantasy/sci fi and graphic novel sections for all the spotty masturbaters that cruise through ;-)

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