Campus Indoctrination: The Parasitization of Myth

Campus Indoctrination: The Parasitization of Myth

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hello hello can I have everybody’s attention please we’re gonna be starting soon all right so first of all thank everybody for coming I really appreciate seeing all of your faces here makes me happy and it’s kind of a sign that we’re in the process of reclaiming sanity on our campus that you guys all showed up to this so thank you thank you I’m just gonna lay some quick ground rules for the event so first of all I want to thank Center first out study a liberal democracy Leadership Institute and undergrad political theory Association for all their support after this I’m going to give the mic over to Professor over menko and he’s gonna announce dr. Peterson Photography is allowed but no flash photography please no signs are allowed besides a regular sheet of paper Petersen is going to speak until 8 p.m. after which we will have a short Q&A until 8:30 and everybody’s going to line up on this side I will be holding the microphone actually we might not be able to use microphone since we only have one okay we should have a microphone for questions starting at 8:00 I’ll have you all line up down here and we will be over at about 8:30 and after the Q&A event you guys are all free to leave so thank you very much here’s professor Albert Mako [Music] [Applause] well good evening and welcome to our talk today which is called political indoctrination on campus I am Richard Avram Iancu associate professor of political science and co-director with John Sharples the English mental gentleman right here from the history department we are the co-directors of the Center for the study of liberal democracy the center along with the young Americans for Liberty and the undergraduate political theory Association organized this lecture today if you’d like to be in the loop regarding other events you can look us up on the intertubes and like I said our talk today is called political indoctrination on campus and I’m grateful to welcome John a dr. Jordan Peterson as our speaker this evening dr. Peterson is professor of psychology and clinical psychologist from Toronto Canada he cut his teeth as a professor of psychology at Harvard University and now is a professor at the University of Toronto where hopefully he enjoys the full protection of a robust tenure tenure policy he’s the author of two books maps of meaning which is on my nightstand right now and 12 rules for life an antidote to chaos dr. Peterson is also the author or co-author of over a hundred scientific articles on issues such as alcoholism aggression and the neurology of political consciousness as I understand the titles because I didn’t read 100 articles in 2013 dr. Peterson began recording his lectures personality and its transformations maps meaning the architecture a belief and uploading them to YouTube which have been very popular I will admit publicly that I listened to many of his podcast this past summer while on long training runs they don’t do much for pace but they keep you going for a long time dr. Peterson made something of a public splash in 2016 when he made a couple of YouTube videos criticizing Canada’s bill c16 which adds gender expression and identity as a protected class under the Canadian Human Rights Act dr. Peterson argued that a person could be prosecuted for refusing to use preferred pronouns a similar law has recently been passed in California which of course raises the issue of forced speech and the First Amendment after these videos dr. Peterson acquired some notoriety his YouTube channel has gathered more four hundred and fifty thousand subscribers and his videos have received more than twenty five million views as of October 2017 his classroom lectures on mythology were turned into a wildly popular thirteen part TV series on TV Ontario dr. Peterson also has a biblical lecture series on Tuesday evenings which are almost always sold out and if any reason to move back to Toronto for me that would be one of them finally I learned that like me dr. Peterson hails from Alberta I assume he’s a right thinking man and Dustin Edmonton Oilers fan ladies and gentlemen dr. Peterson [Applause] thank you very much for inviting me can you hear me at the back yeah it’s good all right well we might as well get right into this so I want to go as deeply underneath the problem as I can possibly manage tonight so I’m going to marry some of my ideas about what you might describe is the grammatical structure of belief with some more overtly political analysis concentrating on what actually what constitutes ideology because one of the things that I’ve been trying to figure out and I guess this is part of my attempt to wrestle with some of the actual problems that the post modernists opposed because I don’t mean as people or as thinkers I mean conceptually because you always have to give the devil his due so to speak and there are elements of postmodern thought like the idea that there’s an infinite number of interpretations for any finite set of facts that actually happened to be true and there aren’t they’re quite problematic and it’s it’s for good reasons as well as bad reasons that post-modernism has become such a dominant strain of thought and so it’s necessary to take it seriously and I’ve been trying to one of the things I’ve been trying to figure out is is there a reasonable way of distinguishing philosophy from an ideologies and the Pope the post modernist answer to that is basically know that it’s ideology all the way down like the turtles all the way down you never escaped from the from the grip of your of your viewpoint in some sense and and there’s some truth in that but there’s not enough truth that’s the thing and one of the hallmarks I would say of both post-postmodern an ideological thinking is the proclivity to reduce very complex phenomena to single causes but anyways so we’re going to we’re going to go underneath things as far as we possibly can so the first thing that I’d like to point out is or like to discuss is the actual problem that were that we’re all trying to solve in some sense including the ideologues who claim to have the let’s say interests of either the working class or there were or the oppressed uppermost in their in their imagination in their heart or in their intellectual concerns and there’s absolutely no doubt that there is oppression and and that there’s no shortage of suffering in the world and I do think that’s not only the fundamental the fundamental reality of the world and and this is an existential theme and it was developed at least to some degree by Martin Heidegger and Heidegger had a concept that he called throne Ness which is an interesting an interesting idea and throne Ness is is a brief description of the arbitrary nature of human being or even of being itself and the arbitrary nature it can be his the word he used for that which is a German word can be translated in other ways it can be translated as abandon or dereliction or dejection which obviously are much harsher words than mere throne this throne this is more of a detached term but what it means is that it’s a characteristic of human conscious experience to be underpinned by arbitrary realities that have nothing to do in some sense with your choice as a being and so some of the elements of being thrown are that you’re born at a certain time rather than a different time that seems like it’s an irrational fact that’s how young would describe it Carl Jung as it’s an irrational fact because there’s no real way of accounting for it from from a causal perspective not not subjectively speaking and you’re born a certain race and you’re born with a certain level of intelligence let’s say although that can be impaired certainly with enough effort and you’re born in a certain culture with a certain language and at a certain socio-economic in a certain socio-economic class and with a certain degree of attractiveness and those are things that are all handed to you in some sense they they make up the in some sense they make up the axiomatic structure of your being and some of the more advantageous and others are disadvantageous and you’re stuck with them and that really is a problem partly because life in and of itself is a problem and a problem of suffering but also because it seems quite evident that well or at least that you could make a strong case that the the talents and catastrophes of life are by no means equally distributed and so in some sense there seems to be an intrinsic we might regard it from the perspective of the standards of human justice and perhaps human mercy as well as something intrinsically unfair unjust about the structure of existence itself now I like the exact existentialist take on that because what the existentialists do is attribute that inequality and injustice and say unfairness to the structure of being itself and pose that as the central problem of life and I find that very realistic I like this painting by Van Gogh I think it does a very good job of expressing that you know he’s an old man and he’s obviously sorrowful and and you know he’s not rich as you can tell by his shoes and like it’s rough and and he’s a nexus of oppression and perhaps Oh a nexus of oppression in that he may have served as an oppressor but also someone who’s suffering and oppressed as a consequence of the conditions of his life and so then the question might be well why is life like that and that’s where and what might be done about it and that’s where the differences really start to arise so we can start from the perspective of the fact that life presents a universal problem to those of us who are alive and conscious now there are various what would you call the Metta theories that account for the existence of this suffering my interpretation of the story of Genesis essentially which in some sense describes the introduction of suffering into the world is that what what seems to happen in the story of Genesis is that human beings originally emerge is a mythological rep so it’s a deep fictional representation that’s one way of thinking about it keeping in mind as you might that fiction can be more true than truth which is partly why we’re so attracted to it because fiction distills truth and presents it in a much more concentrated form than than a mere description of everyday reality and in the Genesis story there’s a there seems to be an association between the development of vision and self-consciousness and the awareness of death and the awareness of good and evil those things happen pretty much at exactly the same time and the consequence of that awareness of or that self-consciousness is a dawning awareness of vulnerability you remember in the story of Genesis when Adam and Eve opened their eyes or have their eyes opened as a consequence of falling prey to temptation the scales fall from their eyes and they realize that they’re naked and then they immediately cover themselves up and of course the question is what does it mean to realize that you’re naked and there’s a variety of complex quest answers to that one is that well if you’re naked a common nightmare is to be naked in front of a crowd and the reason that that’s a nightmare is because well people don’t like to have their full vulnerability exposed to the judgmental eye of the crowd and for good reason like everybody has what would you say it may be an inbuilt sense of shame about their fundamental inadequacy in relationship to the difficulties of life and so the story of Genesis which i think is a foundational story well I don’t think it’s a foundational story it’s obviously a foundational story foundation story of Western culture suggest that it’s mankind’s knowledge of its own nature that leads to not only to suffering but to work you know because once you realize that you’re vulnerable and that that vulnerability never really goes away you always have to prepare for the future because even if you solve the problems that are right in front of you this moment that doesn’t mean that you’ve solved the plethora of problems that are likely to pop up for you tomorrow and next week and next month and next year and and that in some sense are beyond your ability to finally solve so but there’s a different viewpoint I think that comes of the Marxist perspective and I’m going to talk to you about Marxism and post-modernism both of which I regard as variant strands of the same ideology and as I said I’ll define why I think they’re ideological and the the the thing that strikes me so clearly about the Marxist perspective is that the finger is always pointed at inadequate social order as the root cause of suffering and that just seems to me to be I don’t know it’s it’s so naive that it’s difficult to understand why people can possibly fall for it maybe it’s partly because there’s some hope embedded in it right there’s an idea that well suffering might be transcended if we could just organize our societies properly but it seems to be number one that that’s highly unlikely and number two as Dostoevsky pointed out even if we did organize our societies so that no one had anything to worry about from a material perspective so everyone let’s say had enough bread and shelter that were the kind of insane creatures that would blow that apart and fragment that sort of static utopian perfection just so something strange and interesting might happen and I think that’s a really that’s a really devastating critique and you know no Dostoevsky formulated that back in the late 1800s he had thought through the consequences of communist utopia before it even manifested itself as a political force and I think put his finger on exactly at least one of its primary weaknesses so you know if we were delivered from suffering it’s not necessarily clear that we would be happy about that because one of the things that does characterize human beings is this intense desire for experience that transcends the normative you know and people will go out and look for difficult things to do just for the sake of doing difficult things they climb mountains and they engage in extreme sports and they put their lives in danger and there’s no technical reason for that and it doesn’t seem like a very intelligent thing to do from the pure perspective of self-preservation but we’re certainly capable of it and the problem the Marxists seem to lay the reason for suffering at the foot of inadequate social structure and but they go farther than that they also describe the social structure as it exists and this is where the idea the patriarchy is derived as far as I’m concerned as something that is necessarily an upper class or an oppressive class against the oppressed class and what the people who fit in those different categories can vary with classic Marxism it was the rich against the poor or the poor against the rich right the burrs was C against the proletariat and that’s been transformed I would say by the post modernists using a fairly self-evident sleight of hand into identity politics where the oppressed oppressor narrative just takes different forms according to the identity that happens to be plugged into the same mediational structure and what seems to happen as a consequence of that and I mean there’s pretty good data about this with regards to the genesis of intense intergroup conflict one of the things that predicts intense intergroup conflict like the conflict in Rwanda and certainly also happened in Nazi Germany is that genocide all activities are often marketed as pre-emptive strikes against an oppressor class right and so that would have been the Jews in Germany and in in Rwanda the same narrative emerged it’s very common to to dichotomize this society as oppressor and oppressed and then for the oppressed to rise up and take out the so called oppressors even before anything of any of any particular violence occurs because of this enhanced sense of victimization and the moral high ground that it seems to provide the logic being something like if we’re being oppressed and we have every right to to defend ourselves so to speak even against threats that are only in some way imaginary now I don’t want to get to cut-and-dried about that because you know it certainly is the case that there isn’t a political or economic system in the entire world that lacks corruption and so the idea that this the social structure is in part corrupt enough so that everyone who is embodied in that social structure doesn’t necessarily have an equal chance to manifest their gifts say and rise to the top is certainly true because human beings are completely incapable of producing perfect social structures for a variety of reasons our own blindness the fact that we inherit structures that we don’t really understand that are all demented and bent in one way or another and so there’s always an element of truth to critical claims that if we just got our act together better from a social perspective that everything would be more fair and just but to say that is not to simultaneously justify the claim that all the reasons that human beings are suffering and that life is unfair and unjust is because the social structure is corrupt and oppressive right you got to think in multivariate terms if you have any degree of intelligence at all and for any complex phenomena there’s generally a multitude of causes and they are not easy to differentiate I mean that’s partly what social scientists is do is to take a look at a complex outcome suffering certainly being one of those and to look at the potential contributors of multitude of factors now it’s very difficult because those factors are not easy to categorize and they overlap and so on and so forth but you have to be pretty what would you say motivated and stupid I would say both at the same time to use a univariate hypothesis to to talk to to account for a complex phenomena I don’t care what the phenomena is and so that’s another hallmark of ideological thinking is that the causal story collapses into a single dimension you see that often in psychopathology 2 where you know people who get obsessive about something can’t shake like a particular idea that possesses them paranoid people are like that and people who have eating disorders especially anorexia are like that is their entire value structure collapses into the dimension of thin equals beautiful and good and it’s very rigid and black and white and it does them absolutely no good so now some of the problems with with the Marxist perspective seems to be that victimhood the sense of enhanced victimhood tends to produce an intense sense of resentment and that’s a very bad idea because resentment is a very toxic and violent emotion it’s also very grateful which is one of the things I would really say about especially the radical left student types especially at Ivy League universities I mean it’s really quite a spectacle to see people at places like Yale come out and agitate as a consequence of the realization of their own oppression when by any reasonable standard current or historical they’re probably in the top 1/100 of a percent perhaps better than that of all the people who have ever lived anywhere ever and so it really it’s really it’s really quite staggering to me that the top point zero zero one percent can express their resentment about the top point zero zero zero one percent in such strident terms without noticing that exactly the same claims of privilege apply to them by as long as all you have to do is transform the the bin in which you’re doing the the privilege comparisons and that becomes immediately self-evident and you know the fact that as Americans let’s say us North Americans since I’m a Canadian that we’re staggeringly privileged compared to the rest of the world is certainly a consequence of the of what you might describe is the arbitrariness of our political borders and so but to forget that when you’re claiming a particular brand of oppression for yourself seems to me to be very ungrateful at the least and certainly motivated let’s say politically because I think it justifies your expression of hatred for those that tiny fraction of people who are still better off than you and also a degree of historical ignorance that’s absolutely staggering in its magnitude and a complete indictment of our education system which should be indicted in every possible way so now the Marxists might claim to their benefit let’s say with this worldview of class struggle as being the primary driver of human history and the well-off socioeconomically because that’s pretty much the only way they defined well-off which is also something I take great objection to because there’s lots of hierarchies in the world and there are many important hierarchies and not all of can be reduced to socioeconomic status by any stretch of the imagination imagine if you were 80 years old and you had 20 million dollars you know you might be perfectly happy to get rid of all that money if you could be 18 again so it’s and you know one of the best predictors of wealth in North America is actually age because you know young people haven’t actually had much time to make money whereas old people have had quite a bit of time but the problem with being old and rich is that you’re still old and that actually turns out to be quite a serious problem because no matter how rich you are you eventually die and so the money is the money has very delimited if delimited effect with regards to addressing the fundamental problems of the suffering of life and we know perfectly well from the empirical perspective that once you have enough money so that the bill collectors aren’t chasing you around essentially something like the beginnings of a middle-class existence or maybe the upper end of the working class then additional money has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on your psychological well-being and that’s actually an indication of the limitations of material comfort let’s say as a medication for the for the suffering that’s attendant on life it’s another thing that’s very weak about the Marxists and I think very interestingly contradictory because they’re very anti capital in their structure but they’re so damn materialistic that it’s absolutely mind-boggling because the Marxists are actually more convinced that money is useful than most capitalists as far as I can tell because they believe that that money is in fact the solution to all life’s problems the problem is is that just the right people don’t have the money and I think that’s a staggeringly naive perspective because there’s many there’s many problems in life that money just cannot solve and there’s a fair number of them in that it actually makes worse so anyways having said all that you could also still make the case I used to work for a socialist party in Canada when I was a kid about six about time I was 14 till the time I was about 17 before I figured out what was wrong not so much with socialism per se but with ideology per se and I actually admired that the socialist leaders that I had the fortune to be introduced to because at that point they were very much voice for the working class a lot of union leaders and people like that you know so they’re classic democratic socialists on the labor end of the distribution it’s absolutely necessary for labor and the working class to have a political voice something the Democrats might keep in mind so and maybe they wouldn’t lose their elections quite so frequently no I really think it’s appalling you know because it’s necessary for the working class to have a political voice so and to have that transformed into identity politics is a real catastrophe anyways I think that the people that I met many of them were genuinely concerned with the problems of the working-class and you know more power to them and so I think there are people on the Left who who genuinely are trying to make a difference for people who could use a fair shot at opportunity in life but at the same time I noticed that a tremendous number of the people especially the lower end worker party worker protestor types were more peevish and resentful than good-hearted and kind and it was about that time that I came across George Orwell’s famous critique of left-wing thinking and in the UK when in a book called road to Wigan pier where he basically made the claim that the Socialists that he knew especially the middle class ones didn’t give a damn about the poor they just hated the rich and that’s I mean that is something we’re thinking about for a very long period of time because hatred actually turns out to be a very powerful motivation you know and and if you think about the sorts of things that happened in the Soviet Union and all these places that were supposed to be workers paradises if you look at the outcome and you had to infer whether it was goodness of heart and kindheartedness and care for the working man that produced the genocides or outright bitter resentful resentment and hatred it’s a lot easier to draw a causal path from the negative emotion to the outcome than from the positive kind-hearted benevolence to thou you just don’t get goo lags out of benevolence that’s just not how it works so I think the bloody historical evidence is clear although I have read the most convoluted pathological pathetic twisted rationalizations of what happen stay installing this Russia that you could possibly manufacture it’s as if a stack of corpses that would reach halfway to the moon isn’t enough evidence for the pathology of a certain form of belief so well some people can’t be convinced by anyone’s death but their own I suppose so so you know now I want to talk about post-modernism a little bit what seems to me that’s much Michelle Foucault in the middle and a more reprehensible individual you could hardly ever discover or even dream up no matter how twisted your imagination and Foucault and Derrida I would say there’s more but I would say they’re the two architects of the of the of the post modernist movement and in brief I think what they did was in the late 60s and early 70s they were avowed Marxist some way way after anyone with any shred of ethical decency had stopped being a Marxist by that time even jean-paul Sartre had woken up enough to figure out that the Soviets hadn’t assured in the kingdom of heaven you know he had evidence stretching back 45 years that he could have attended to if he would have been willing to open his eyes talk about bad faith which was his critical critique essentially is something quite staggering the post modernists knew that they were pretty much done with regards to pushing their classic Marxism by the late 60s in the early 70s because the evidence that stellen is Russia not only Stellina certainly Lenin was no no saint by any stretch of the imagination that the killing certainly got underway while he was still alive and and continued after Stalin was dead as well although perhaps with not the same degree of brutality and efficiency and then there is of course Maoist China where the estimates you know nobody knows how many people died under Mao but the estimates are run as high as a hundred million people which actually turns out to be quite a few people and the fact that we can’t keep count accurately you know without an error margin of something in the tens of millions just tells you exactly how horrible the situation was they transformed the Marxist dialogue of rich versus poor into oppressed versus oppressor and Foucault in particular who never fit in anywhere and who was an outcast in many ways and a bitter one in a suicidal one his entire life did everything he possibly could with his staggering IQ to figure out every treacherous way possible to undermine the structure that wouldn’t accept him in all his peculiarities and it’s no wonder because there would be no way of making a structure that could possibly function if it was composed of people who were is peculiar bitter and resentful as Michele Foucault so you couldn’t imagine this functioning society that would be composed of individuals with his particular makeup in any case he did put his brain to work trying to figure out a how to resurrect Marxism under a new guys let’s say and B how to justify the fact that it wasn’t his problem that he was an outsider it was actually everyone else’s problem and he did a pretty damn good job of that and laid the groundwork for this for the what would you call it the rise of the marginalized against the center and Derrida’s thinking is very much the same you know Derek even though Foucault and Derrida hated each other and and regarded each other as intellectual charlatans which was about the only thing either of them was ever really correct about so Derrida was also and Derrida in some ways is even a more treacherous thinker because he makes the claim in some sense that like a political system has a center around which the majority congregate let’s say it’s it’s it’s quite similar to two fuko’s analysis and that there are there are people who are outside the category system and then which is obviously true because no matter how you categorize people there are certain people inside the category and certain people outside that’s actually why you categorize things right because of every category holds every entity then every every cognitive operation is infinitely complex you can’t manage that way to categorize you have to include and exclude in the very nature of categorization and you can’t just scrap categorization because without simplification and categorization you actually can’t function in the world you just died right you die of excess stress it’s something like something like that happens to schizophrenic people because their category systems break down they’re completely incapable of functioning in the world as a consequence of that anyways then fluke you know Derrida went and Foucault as well went a step farther and this is one of the incredibly crooked elements of their thinking I think another sleight of hand which was well category systems exclude political systems exclude economic systems exclude any hierarchy of value excludes obviously because if there was a hierarchy of value some things are more valuable than others and the less valuable things are excluded because otherwise it wouldn’t be a hierarchy of value but the the next claim they essentially make is that the reason that those hierarchies of value are constructed isn’t to produce whatever it is that’s of value but to exclude and to maintain the structure of power that’s intrinsic to the hierarchy of value and that’s a that’s an unbelievably crooked claim because there are multiple reasons why a hierarchy value might be put into place their hierarchies of beauty and there’s hierarchies of competence hierarchies of intelligence and and attractiveness and and athletic ability and musical talent there’s multiple hierarchies and in order for those things to exist at a high order in order for us to to to do laud what would you say musical genius we have to excuse all the people we have to exclude all the people who can only squawk their clarinet from the hierarchy because otherwise you don’t have any music and there’s no up and there’s no direction and so to claim that the purpose of the hierarchy is to exclude is unbelievably crooked and it’s a central claim for both for both Foucault and and Derrida it’s one of those slights of hands that people don’t quite notice but that have absolutely catastrophic effects now for Foucault and Derrida they you could here’s how you could imagine their world essentially you know for the for the philosopher hobbes life was nasty brutish and short and people were at each other’s throats in the state of nature right but hobbes really thought about that as a has the chaos of individuals and he believed that a central authority had to exert force in order to organize that intrinsic chaos so that some degree of peace could reign it’s kind of the opposite of jean-jacques Rousseau’s theory which was that human beings were intrinsically good and and the state the the government was intrinsically bad and that all of what made people evil derived from the state I would say if you put Hobbes and Rousseau together you actually get the truth even though they do seem to be coming at it from opposite perspectives because people are actually good and evil and social structures are also good and evil and you know it’s paradoxical and we don’t like paradoxical categories but that’s still how it is what what Foucault and Derrida and the post modernists did was that they kind of added a collective element to that so they’re Hobbesian world isn’t a world of individuals struggling against one another in the initial state of warlike nature it’s it’s groups of individuals bound by whatever their identity happens to be struggling against each each other for power because in the postmodern neo-marxist universe there’s nothing but power and there’s a variety of reasons for that partly it’s because the post modernists don’t admit that there are any standards outside of arbitrary opinion essentially they don’t really believe in the real world which is why they can generate critiques of science for example which is increasingly characterized as nothing but part of the Eurocentric patriarchy’s what would you call desire to impose their power structure on the rest of the world despite the fact that it also makes planes fly and computers operate and well you know yeah exactly so and it’s a rare bloody social justice warrior that doesn’t have a an iPhone or a Android that wouldn’t work if quantum mechanics wasn’t actually correct because the fact that quantum mechanics is correct is one of the reasons why these unbelievably highly developed pieces of technology actually functions so they bitch and whine about the patriarchal patriarchal underpinnings of Eurocentric science and use the gadgets all the time to Agra to complain about it so it’s really pretty appalling so anyways anyways the worldview of the of the postmodern neo-marxists is that everybody is basically not an individual because that’s really a fiction and it’s a Eurocentric patriarchal fiction at that but a member of whatever their identity group happens to be and there’s no real possibility of communication between identity groups hence phenomenon like cultural appropriation and so it’s a war of all groups against all groups and it’s all it’s nothing but a struggle for power and there’s no higher order ethic to be referred to because for the post modernists there is no such thing as a higher order ethic there’s no such thing as a uniting narrative that’s that’s a hallmark of their thinking now of course that doesn’t work out in practice because without an ethic or a higher-order value there isn’t anything you can do with your life because you keep undermining yourself if everything’s just a whim and subjective there’s and there’s no hierarchy of values then what the hell do you do when you get up in the morning if one thing isn’t better than the other you might as well just lay there and smother yourself with a pillow would be a lot easier than opening your eyes and struggling in the world so so it’s completely it’s a self-defeating philosophy and I think that’s part of the reason why it’s more or less self-evident that it’s a mask for the continuation of Marxism because at least Marxism has as one of its advantages a direction it’s an ethic right you have something to struggle against even though what you’re struggling against is certainly one of the things that you actually rely on and second something that you have to oversimplify in a very ungrateful and resentful way to justify fighting against it to begin with and that’s especially true in Western cultures because as pathological as they certainly are which is approximately as pathological as all of you are there are a lot less pathological than almost everything that’s ever happened and pretty much everything that’s currently happening elsewhere in the world and you can kind of tell that by the fact that people tend to cut to emigrate to the West rather than the reverse now you know the postmodern neo-marxists would have an answer to that which would be the only reason the West functions is because it’s raped the rest of the humanity and the planet but you know the less said about that the better and Marx was wrong about this too the proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains that actually wasn’t true they lost their food they yeah yeah you might see that happening again in Venezuela where they where they’re having a hard time the middle class are having a hard time getting toilet paper which is a lot less funny than it sounds they lost their families that’s good they lost their land they lost their freedom they lost they lost their right to exist without pain they lost the right to honestly suffer and talk about it which is a terrible thing to learn lose and then they lost their lives so that was wrong and he can smile all he want about it but it wasn’t very cute this is nice I saw this on Twitter today when Karl Marx died in 1883 the average Englishman was three times richer that he was when what Marx was born in 1818 that’s world GDP per person in 1919 90 international dollars and you see that there’s an unbelievable spike that happened at about 1895 which was let’s let’s put it this way it was precisely and exactly the opposite of what the Marxists predicted but you know when your predictions fail and you’re an ideologue you just gerrymander the axioms of your theory because otherwise you’d have to drop the damn thing and then you’re plunged into a state of existential chaos which is no joke and you have to reformulate yourself so you know you don’t want to underestimate the difficulty of doing that but but it’s still relatively amusing especially when you consider that that unbelievable increase in gross domestic product per person actually happened despite the best efforts of the Marxists to prevent it from happening and so god only knows we where we would be if 120 million people weren’t sacrificed painfully and pointlessly in the 20th century to this idiot god of socialist utopia was turned out to be murderous beyond comprehension post-modernism an attitude of skepticism irony toward a skepticism towards everything but post-modernism I might add irony toward rejection of grand narratives that’s a lot bigger a problem than you think because actually the things that unite people are grand narratives you know a narrative is a– as a cognitive structure that Orient’s you towards an ideal that’s what a narrative is you know if you go see a movie which is a narrative the hero is up to something first of all there’s a hero because why the hell go to the movie otherwise you don’t want to watch a bunch of people bumble around randomly there’s no you’re not interested in that at all you want to see someone who has a problem to solve and who who’s applying an ethic to the solution of that problem can be a bad ethic that would be an antihero right could be a pathological ethic that’s a good object lesson anyways but it’s certainly an ethic and so it’s grand narratives that unite people and when the post modernists becomes skeptical about the grand narratives what that essentially means is that they’re demolishing the the hyper truths I would say the fictions the the the true fictions that unite us as people and stop us from being at each other’s throats enable us to compete and to cooperate in a peaceful and productive manner at least some of the time which is a miracle in and of itself and should be regarded as such right I mean we’re so blind in the West to the miraculous nature of our culture that it’s well it’s a consequence of being privileged let’s say although I hate that word we could call it fortunate know when I and Hirsi Ali came to Holland one of the things that’s really struck me when I read her book infidel she was very taken aback by the fact that you could stop by a bus a bus stop and there’d be a little digital display there that said when the bus was coming and when it but the digital display said the bus was coming then the bus would show up and she just couldn’t accustom herself to that it was like an existential produced existential terror and it’s no wonder because you just think about how bloody impossible that is that’s impossible I mean the Dutch could manage it because they managed you know a dozen impossible things before breakfast they live underwater for God’s sake so but you know she was also absolutely amazed that you could go ask policeman for help and they wouldn’t just hurt you and take all your money and that is also another form of miracle the kind of thing that we just take for granted skepticism towards ideologies and universalism well we can scrap the ideology part including objective notions of Reason human nature social progress absolute truth and objective reality and it’s an unbelievably corrosive it’s an unbelievably corrosive system of thought because first of all it defines hierarchy as power and that’s actually technically wrong even Friends de Waal who’s been studying chimpanzee hierarchies has established quite clearly that the most brutal and powerful alpha chimp is not the one who establishes the most stable dominance harkey’s let’s call them social hierarchies because the brutal tyrant chimp gets torn apart by to subordinate chimps 3/4 as strong as him as soon as he turns a blind eye the more stable hierarchies even among chimps are ones that are that are governed by someone you know when a chimp that’s got some physical power and some capacity for intimidation but who’s perfectly capable of establishing reciprocal relationships with other male and female chimps so that he’s got friends and allies around him it stabilizes as a rule so to speak so the idea that hierarchies in functioning societies are primarily a consequence of power is cynical beyond belief apart from being wrong so and it also destroys the idea of a hierarchy of competence which I really think is one of the reasons for the theory to begin with because we know even from the empirical data that in Western societies the best two predictors of long term life success our intelligence and conscientiousness and they do a pretty good job of predicting long term life success accounting for about 25 to 30 percent of the variance which is a lot by social science standards and it’s kind of a testament to the integrity of our societies that complex jobs tend to be filled by intelligent hard-working people and thank God for that because who the hell do you want running them you don’t want to be doing that randomly most of those things are incredibly complex and difficult and so you better have disciplined people who were willing to work 60 hours a week and who were super smart governing those things or or the lights go off and they should be off right now because it’s impossible to keep a power grid functioning it’s not like it it’s not like entropy isn’t trying to tear it to bits at every second right there are thousands of people out there working madly to stop this thing from doing what it should be doing which is to fail and so competence is everywhere and it’s absolute mean you think about how many competent people have to be working behind the scenes so that you can all come here you know in your leisure fundamentally and sit for two hours peacefully in lecture it’s absolutely beyond belief so I think that they were after the destruction of the idea of competence itself and we’re getting we’re walking down that road very very rapidly as well as trying to destroy the idea of the world and that’s part of the what would you call it the attempt to to insist that there’s no such thing outside the text which was one of Derrida’s great statements there’s no such thing outside the text and what he meant by that in some sense was everything his interpretation and there is a manner in which that’s true but it’s not the kind of final truth that the post modernists likes like to think it is they’re a little too tangled up in language so and that’s not a good thing so here’s where we’re at with regards to the to the spread of postmodern neo-marxist ideas and these are CI being true you know how you you can identify the right wingers you don’t want to hang around with because they talk about white supremacy and maybe they have a swastika it’s like that’s a little science and if your conservative move away from those people and most conservatives do that you know I in the aftermath of Charlottesville for example shapiro immediately distanced himself from the radical right and William Buckley did the same thing in the 1960s 1970s when he divorced himself from the John Birch Society conservatives are pretty good at putting borders around things in fact that’s a good definition of a conservative I’m serious I’m serious like conservatives like to have borders around things whereas liberals think well if you have too many borders information can’t flow and that’s true and the conservatives say no borders chaos and the and the Liberals say too many borders stagnation and those are both right so you have to argue about how thick the border should be but anyways liberals have a hell of a time drawing borders and that means they can’t separate themselves from the radical leftists who have absolutely no interest whatsoever in sustaining the genuine liberals they just use them as useful idiots to take a phrase from the Soviet Union and here are the hallmarks I think of the pathological left I think that if but someone is pushing this quarter nity on you then you should you should be very suspicious of them in every possible way and you should resist it as much as you possibly can diversity inclusivity well you don’t those are those are the minor demons of the radical left let’s say equity it’s like no we’re not going there that’s equality of outcome not equality of opportunity and equality of outcome I’ll tell you why in a bit is an absolutely pathological idea there’s nothing about it that’s good it’s impossible to implement it’s fundamentally motivated by resentment and it’s a lie so I like the fact that those three make the acronym die though because that seems to be approximately appropriate so and then the worst of the bunch is white privilege because as far as I’m concerned there’s absolutely no difference between that statement and then outright racist slur they’re the same thing so and it’s quite straightforward why it’s not doesn’t take a bloody genius to figure this out I mean what constitutes racism it’s the ascription of the hypothetical qualities of a group to all the individuals who compose that group so white privilege it’s like even the interest people who are interested in intersectionality you’d think would have some problem with that it’s like what about all the poor white people well they’re more privileged than the poor people who aren’t white I suppose but but you know that’s a pretty bloody weak argument in my estimation and to call it privileges so something and to associate it with race per se is also something extraordinarily interesting and we’ll get into that a little bit so let’s talk about diversity okay well first of all we have to define it you know when Jonathan Hyde has been trying to define it as diversity of opinion I think it might be useful to define it as diversity of personality because there’s actually more variability and personality within groups of people regardless of the group’s than there is between groups of people so that should be said again there’s more variability within groups of people then between groups of people and to state otherwise is to state something that is in fact categorically racist because if I said well there’s more difference between groups of people than within groups then I’m saying that each racial group is an entity unto itself which could be true but happens to actually not be so the diversity definition is really quite interesting and right now that’s being defined by race sex or gender sexual orientation and disability although there’s a very large number of other potential dimensions of of difference that could be included in the list of oppressed versus oppressor that’s actually why intersectionality has emerged you know because people figured out well you know you’re having a harder time if you’re black let’s say and you’re having a harder time if you’re a woman depending on how you define harder time but you’re even having a harder time if you’re a black woman there’s an intersection there it’s like okay fine well where are we gonna stop with the intersections I figured out the other day if you if each of those categories could be differentiated into a hundred subunits you know who knows how many there are with gender sex there’s an infinite number of them apparently then you need six dimensions before you’re down to one in the billion so six dimensions of intersectionality brings you down to the level of the individual which is the flaw in what would you call it identity politics theory manifesting itself as an internal contradiction so I think that’s very funny if you push if you push intersectionality to its final frontier you break down everyone to the level of the individual which is actually what I think Western culture figured out about 4,000 years ago is that the ultimate minority is the individual and the only and the fairest Society is one where individuals are allowed to rise to the level of their ability because how what are you gonna do you’re gonna covary out all their differences it’s impossible it’s technically impossible there’s a given postmodern logic itself there’s an infinite number of ways to categorize a finite number of facts so how are you going to determine which dimensions of difference are the ones that should be adjusted for the individual since there’s an unlimited number of dimensions of variability intelligence height attractiveness age personality there’s five dimensions of personality socioeconomic class right degree of historical oppression you know that can be seriously multiplied endlessly so what are you gonna do control for all those it’s like good luck that’s never going to happen and then diversity in the service of what exactly you know the idea that a group of people that’s racially diverse is better at problem solving than a group of people who isn’t there isn’t a shred of evidence to support that idea it’s a presupposition a supposition and it also brings you back to something like racial essentialism right I mean so so in every possible way logically and practically it’s a non-starter and I think the diversity issue is irrelevant anyways because I think the fundamental reason that the postmodern neo-marxist push diversity is because it’s another way that they can attack the power structure that they regard as patriarchal and oppressive say well it’s in the service of the working class and the oppressed it’s like we already covered that a little bit with regards to the Marxist claims to be working on the side of the working class when in fact what really happened was that many of them perhaps most were killed and the ones that weren’t killed were certainly at least made extraordinarily miserable which maybe is even better than killing them if you’re particularly malevolent today and see one of the things that’s happening that’s quite pathological is and very interesting is that mmm-hmm the post modernists and this is I think a direct consequence of training of activists in universities and the universities have more be ashamed of than you could list in a two-hour lecture I think someone estimated today that about 4,000 colleges and universities will go bankrupt in the u.s. in the next ten years and as far as I’m concerned the faster the better so so the Toronto District School Board announced recently that it will now give priority to the hiring of diverse staff especially in racialized backgrounds why in I don’t know I suspect it’s because the people who wrote the damn policy are functionally illiterate but you’d certainly think that if you looked at the intelligence of their policies and so what’s that priority to the hiring of diverse staff especially in racialized backgrounds what the hell did that mean I tweeted that if you weren’t gonna hire straight white sisters it’s I guess this gender does the same thing but we use it just because it’s such a hateful phrase if you’re not going to hire straight cisgendered men as teachers why the hell do you let them into the faculties of Education to begin with you might as well just exclude them before they waste four years on your what would you call them ideologically rigid pseudo education a little nonsense equity this is something I really like there’s the little happy thing equality of opportunity on the Left versus equity on the right you see the little kid gets to lift up and eat the Apple isn’t that lovely but what happens really in equity is that everyone gets to have exactly the same depth of grave and they’re perfectly equal when there’s six feet under and if you not if you don’t believe that then you can look at what happened in the Ukraine in the 1930s during the whole of Madore when the the Russians decided that with the Soviets decided that it was perfectly reasonable to ascribe class guilt to the successful farmers and wiped them out and then starved six million Ukrainians to death thus establishing a certain equality this woman she’s I remind this is the Shakespeare quote one I think it’s from Richard the third but I’m not exactly sure one can smile and smile and smile and still be a villain and you know she’s a lovely looking old grandmotherly type of creature but that doesn’t mean that everything that she did wasn’t pathological beyond leaf and it was her her what would you call them second-rate pseudo-intellectual opinionated meanderings that produced the the the concept of white privilege and what she did was make a list of all the ways that she felt that she was particularly privileged in society that was her bloody methodology and that’s the sort of methodology that these pseudo disciplines that have invaded the universities get away with because the rest of the faculty you’re too damn timid to stand up and say the emperor has no clothes better stand up and say something about it pretty soon because you can bloody well be sure that they’re coming for the physicians and the evolutionary biologists and psychologists next and they’re not weak and they’re well organized and so it’s a very terrible thing so anyways these papers rely on personal examples because we know how methodical a rigorous that is of unearned advantage as maket but that whole methodology thing that rigorous methodology that’s just another manifestation of the Eurocentric patriarchy so you don’t have to be concerned about your damn methodology when you have your personal experience to rely on and so here’s the privileges I can if I wish to arrange arrange to be in the company of people of my race most of the time if I should need to move I can be pretty sure of renting or purchasing housing in an area which I can afford in which I would want to live I can be pretty sure that my neighbors in such a location will be neutral or pleasant to me unless they know that I’m the author of the fundamental paper on white privilege I can go shopping alone most of the time pretty well assured that I will not be followed or harassed it’s like well the first thing is as lot of those so-called privileges are just the consequence of living in a reasonably civilized society and apply to pretty much everyone and the second thing is is that there’s no reason to associate this with race that’s another one of these absolutely pathological slights of hand how about we call it majority privilege you think that’s not the case for for the majority members of every society that’s ever functioned that’s actually being functional obviously there’s a majority advantage if there wasn’t a bloody majority advantage people wouldn’t make societies the whole point of making a society is so that the people within this society have the advantage so now you might say well when people are being integrated into this society they should be given those advantages are provided with those advantages when they join the club so to speak as rapidly as possible and obviously that’s the case but to attribute this level of civility and safety to some hypothetical construct like white privileges well it’s exactly what you’d expect from people who who whose response to the idea of methodology is that that’s just a social construct like everything else is theirs the class enemies from the Ukraine the kulaks right they were the farmers who were productive in the 1920s and before had me recently emerged from the peasant class they were all rounded up and shot raped and robbed and then sent to Siberia to freeze to death or to die of some infectious disease because to them guilt was attributed as a consequence of their membership of a class and I can tell you if there are people around you that are attributing guilt to you because of your membership in a class they are not your friends in fact they’re the Friends of no one and they’re contributing to this intense state of political polarization and racial disharmony that seems to be me to be expanding at an exponential rate it’s not good I really like this juxtaposition of pictures so when the Soviets collectivized the farms in the Ukraine they take took all the grain that the Ukrainians had had had produced which wasn’t very much because they had collectivized the farms and they shipped it all to the cities and then the rule was that if you were a starving Ukrainian woman who had children and you went out in the field and you picked up individual half rotten bits of grain to feed your kids that that was a that was an offense punishable by death you were supposed to turn that into the local authority so they could ship that to the city too so on the one hand you have nice picture here of the bags of grain that were heroically going into the cities and on the other hand you have a picture of the bodies that were the cost of doing precisely that so let’s look at the failures of this system well UK you could list them forever the death of the kulaks that was right off the bat which is why I use it it was very very early in in the collectivization process then the Ukrainian famine which I mean I don’t know how often that’s taught in high schools in the United States and Canada but I would suspect never is the answer to that the rise of the gulag state because it turned out that the bloody Soviet Union couldn’t function unless they enslaved everybody and made them work the death of tens of millions it’s uncountable the 56 crackdown on Hungary the 68 invasion of Czechoslovakia not to mention the whole cold war that put the whole goddamn world at risk from 1962 to 1989 and that still rear is rearing its ugly head with our current dispute with North Korea which is a the last remaining let’s call it GU leg-like Soviet state so there’s the death counts perhaps that’s a relatively conservative estimate 8 to 61 million in the Soviet Union it’s quite a margin of error wouldn’t you say that’s the red tear the Great Purge the national operations of the NKVD later the KGB the great purge in mongolia soviet killings during world war ii the People’s Republic of China land reform land reform that’s how that’s how you that’s what you call it when you take land that grows food and turn it into land that’s just full of corpses that’s land reform and the suppression of counter revolutionaries the Great Leap Forward that was a good one the great proletarian Cultural Revolution Cambodia and the killing fields and then a list of other countries every single place where these pathological ideas were put into practice became what you might describe as the literal equivalent of Hell on earth so rapidly that it was a kind of miracle in and of itself and yet we still you know what is it 1 out of 5 social scientists in American universities regard themselves as Marxists it’s like what the hell really really what is going on with that I don’t understand that in the least you know I don’t understand why that pathological ideology that’s so murderous so intensely murders and so closely tied to the genocides from a causal perspective can can cannot have accreted to it the same what would you call unalterable an honorable state that Nazism has accrued to itself what’s going on why why don’t we see it that way I don’t understand that I mean maybe it’s because of the hypothetical universal utopia that the damn Soviets were aiming at maybe you could get away with that in 1895 you know or maybe after World War one when things were brutal and and the monarchies of Europe were collapsing and everything was chaotic you didn’t know that your utopian ideas were gonna result in an absolute catastrophe but it’s a hundred years after that now almost to the day and when the evidence is clearly in I’m a Marxist it’s no you’re just jealous because you don’t make as much as a bloody investment banker so that’s why you’re a bloody Marxist if you are paid four times as much you’d be a capitalist so fast it would make your head spin I’m gonna talk for 15 more minutes because we started a little late and I do want to get through this so what’s the problem well we already discussed it and I want to show you a different way of conceptualizing it this is based on some of the work that I’ve done on archetypes and I think of I think of archetypes as imagistic representations of the axioms of thought that’s a reasonable way of or maybe of the axioms of being itself there are categories of being pain is a category of being for example suffering limitation finitude those are all categories of being and they’re very realistic they’re the fundamental elements of existence essentially it’s a different different in some sense than a materialist viewpoint you know because the materialists make the claim and perfectly reasonable in some sense that the fundamental realities are material but they’re only the fundamental realities in some sense if you define them that way not that that isn’t useful and not that you can’t derive objective truth that’s pragmatically useful from that but the fundamental realities of life have a lot more to do with motivation and emotion especially with regards to suffering and so that is the unsolved problem of human existence and we talked about the different ways of conceptualizing that and I want to walk you quickly through some of my thinking about the root the true roots of suffering and human vulnerability and I think of this as an antidote to ideological possession I think that this is the fundamental map of religious belief and I’ll walk you through it very quickly and that what happens what happens in the case of an ideology as an ideology takes a fragment of a religious belief system and expands it up into a totality and has its mode of power because it draws on these underlying religious / archetypal narratives for its power so for example you know that the idea of the future socialist utopia is very very similar to the idea of the kingdom of heaven on earth it was always you know that’s a cardinal element of may of of the three Western major religions so here’s a way of conceptualizing existence and each of these levels of conceptualization have their own symbolic representations and you can see these what portrayed consistently throughout the narratives that we use to guide our existence even the ones that we don’t understand explicitly they come up in in in movies and in and in books and in myths and and the stories we tell each other in our dreams in our imagination constantly so they’re really the categories of the imagination and so the first category and the one that’s most difficult to understand I called the dragon of chaos it’s sort of the outermost circle that’s a good illustration of it there the dragon is a very large very common symbol worldwide and an anthropologist / biologist who I recently read called it a snake cat bird which I really liked and he thought about it as an amalgam of the of the idea of predator you know because our tree-dwelling ancestors and after that were basically preyed on burb by birds of prey by predatory cats and by snakes and so well and god only knows how much how many times fire did them in as well so a fire-breathing tree cat tree snake bird is a is a very good representation of the category of everything that’s out there in the unknown that can do you in and that become elaborated over the course of time into the idea of the dragon that hoards gold or the virgins for that matter the idea being that human beings are half prey and half predator and so that we have to make a representation of that which exists beyond our comprehension that can do us in and so that’s the the dragon of chaos let’s say but also come to understand that confronting that voluntarily is the appropriate way to gather new information and to survive and that’s really the fundamental human story the fundamental human story is to go boldly where no one has gone before and what you encounter are the terrible dragons that exist beyond your field of comprehension and if you can manage that forthrightly then you gather the kind of information and riches that enables you to develop yourself character logically and to benefit your community that’s the fundamental story of mankind the fundamental positive story and that’s the underpinning of the hero mythology so which is a lovely antidote to ideological presupposition so that’s the outermost the other outermost reality you would say that’s the unknown unknowns that donald rumsfeld referred to and nested inside that are the terrible things about life that you actually encounter that you they’re not the hypothetical things that might get you there the actual things that you encounter that you don’t know and some of those are positive and some of those are negative you know and that can even flip because sometimes your life is turned upside down by let’s say by a rejection from someone you love should be a good example of the terrible mother that’s the great mother on the outer ring but that can mature you and make you wake up as well and so the the encounter with with these with the things that transcend your what would you call it your competence are also things that can make you grow and mature so you could think of the great mother as nature and the great father as culture and the individual as the person who’s enveloped by culture and by nature when you move to the fringes of your culture you encounter nature itself and that’s the case let’s say geographically but it’s also the case conceptually right because if you’re the master of a field of endeavor which is a geographical metaphor you move towards the fringes so that you can stand on the unknown encounter something that’s new transform what’s new into inhabitable territory and extend the dimension of human capacity and so it works on a practical geographical level of representation but also on a on a on an abstract level and so you can also think about it as a person on an island in an ocean that’s a good way of thinking about the human condition except the person has two elements and the island has two elements and so does the ocean and the person’s two elements are classically speaking the good and evil that wars in their heart because it isn’t so self-evident exactly where your enemy is and it might be the class structure that’s so pressing you but it might be the snake in your own heart and it’s certainly the case that if you read people like Viktor Frankl and Alexander Solzhenitsyn just to take a start who were very perspicacious interpreters of the catastrophes of Nazism and and and the Soviet Union both of their conclusions was the fundamental problem with both of both of those systems is that the individuals within the systems allowed themselves to be corrupted by what was in their own hearts and so one of the things that’s absolutely horrible I think about the Marxist and postmodernist viewpoint is that it doesn’t attribute any of the pathology that’s all all projected onto the social world to the individual him or herself and you might say well that’s where the fundamental battle takes place and I would also say that the idea that existence is a battle between good and evil and it’s the battle of the soul is a consequence of the symbolic realization of Western civilization that the evil that has to be confronted most forthrightly is actually the individual that obtains that the evil that obtains to the individual and that it’s primarily an ethical issue at the individual level and that’s what you take responsibility for it if you forget that you project it onto other people you take no responsibility for it and you end up thinking that you’re the good guy and you probably shouldn’t think that because if you thought for about 15 minutes about all the stupid things that you’ve done in your life you could and malevolent things as well you could figure out for yourself quite quickly that the probability that you’re the saint and that everyone else is the villain is is is only an indication of precisely how villainous you are so and then with regards to the social structure well obviously it’s pathological and tyrannical and corrupt and deceitful you know it’s it’s partly a structure of the Dead and people are corrupt to some degree and willfully blind and so that’s an archetypal truth that’s part of the thoroughness that we discussed earlier you have this infrastructure that surrounds you both physical and conceptual and you’re its beneficiary and its victim it’s partly pathological and corrupt it’s always been that way and you’re damn lucky that it isn’t just purely corrupt because that’s frequently the case and so what your job is not to whine about the fact that it’s corrupt that’s self-evident your job is to straighten yourself up enough so that you can straighten up the culture and that’s the old motif of rescuing your father from the belly of the whale let’s say which is part of the necessary process by which people become fully developed individuals what you’re supposed to be doing in university and the humanities you don’t just study the great ideas of Western culture you just you you study the pathology of history and know that it’s about you and then maybe you try to culture yourself and discipline yourself to the point where you have enough of an internal ethic so that when you take your place in the patriarchy for lack of a better word you’re going to be a force for good rather than a force for evil and then maybe the damn thing tilts a bit towards the good instead of the catastrophe and then maybe you’ve done something that’s worthwhile and then nature well you know if you it’s very easy to romanticize nature especially if you’re a city dweller who’s never had to you know wander out in the northern woods in the middle of the summer and get eaten by black flies and mosquitoes starving to death while trying to track down an animal it’s very easy to romanticize nature of course cancer and other diseases tend to disabuse you of the pure beauty of nature and nature is a very very destructive force it’s it’s against us all the time as well as for us and another thing that’s really not well balanced in our society is the anteye humanism that’s become part and parcel of radical discussions everywhere human beings are regarded as a cancer on the planet to to quote the what was that the Club of Rome worrying about the population explosion and we’re all guilty because we’re destroying things as fast as we can possibly manage it’s like Jesus everything around us is always trying to kill us most of the time we’re just trying to stay alive I mean we’re not perfect we’re corrupt and so our social structures and people get greedy and careless but it’s not like nature’s all shining wonderful young lady waiting in the wilderness to embrace us positively it’s the old hag that’s going to kill you every possible way and you need to defend yourself against that and you know human beings have only been in a position since 1960 since we ever had any conceptualization of our potential to change the planet on a planetary scale it’s been like four generations you know back in the 1890s Thomas Huxley was commissioned by the English Parliament to to investigate the carrying capacity of the oceans and his he was a great biologist his report was that there are so damn many fish in the ocean that every human being could fish every day for the rest of his life and catch everything he possibly could and we wouldn’t put a dent in it and that’s how you know that’s only a hundred and twenty years ago we only woke up to the fact that we became a planetary force and in 1960 it’s like what the hell do you expect from people you know we’re trying to get our ourselves together as fast as we can and might be decent of us to stop with the anti human rhetoric which is only going to lead to a bad end you know if human beings are nothing but a cancer on the planet then it’s the bloody hero who obliterates them isn’t it because it’s the hero who gets rid of cancer and then people watch the school shooters and the mass shooters and they think well what is it that motivates people like that witch so they could figure out about half an hour if they did the proper reading just read what they wrote human beings are a cancer on the planet being is evil intrinsically I’m going to take out everything I can to show my displeasure with the structure of reality and then I’m going to shoot myself just to show you how little I care and if you can’t understand that then you haven’t looked very deeply into your own heart because there could be a time in your life believe me where something terrible enough happens to you so that you’ll be able to understand that perfectly there’s a Christian representation of the same thing right so the great mothers on the outside that’s nature and then the father’s in the middle and in that representation which I really like that’s from the 13th century you see God the Father who’s a representation of culture holding the suffering individual who simultaneously transcends his suffering that’s the goal to be the suffering individual who simultaneously transcends his suffering that’s why all those people on the inside of the open version which is what that sculpture is called are gazing at that image because they’re trying to figure out what the hell it means well people have been gazing at it for 2,000 years trying to figure out what it means and one of the things that you can be sure of is that that story and what that image represents is absolutely central to the integrity of Western civilization five more minutes this is an image of I would call it the patriarchy and it’s a lovely image it’s God the Father and he’s assimilated to the Sun because well because consciousness which is associated with light is the Builder of culture and he rules over the walled city and and so he’s the centering idea you might say that that unites a culture that’s another way of looking at it and he’s got two hands I described them as security and tyranny all together order and you know if you’re in a university the U of T students complain about this all the time there’s 60,000 U of T’s students right they feel like numbers they feel ignored and no wonder cuz they’re numbers and they are ignored it’s no wonder they didn’t feel that way you know and there’s huge classes of 1,200 people and they get lost and they think god that’s a pretty evil structure and and uncaring it’s like yeah that’s exactly right but by the same token you know you get to purchase four years of intellectual freedom and you have all these people who could at least in principle teach you something and you get an identity out of the deal and if you have half half a bit of sense you’re in the library trying to read great things and maybe you’re not quite as dopey and useless when you come out as you were when you went in and so it takes with one hand and gives with the other and you got to understand that about your position in relationship to society it crushes you and molds you at the same time it limits you and furthers your compute capability at the same time and it’s up to you to determine how to establish a harmonious and productive relationship with that because that’s one of the fundamental demands of life that sort of splits into these two things but that’s the king who devours his son I love that picture and that’s well that’s a society that’s become tyrannical right and the son of the king is the thing that regenerates the king the king’s old and he’s blind and he’s stupid and he’s corrupt and he has a son and the son is lively and awake and alert and can see and if the father’s not pathological then he tries to make the Sun strong so that the Sun can grow up and revitalize the culture and if he’s a tyrant well then he devours him and then he gets old and corrupt and everything goes into chaos and then there’s the benevolent King who’s got that properly balanced and you see in this picture he’s got a globe in his hand with the cross on top of it and that’s means the same thing that of that other symbolic image did which is that the proper society supports the suffering individual in his or her attempts to transcend their suffering and attain a proper ethical perspective and then the son of the Father is the hero that’s Hercules I really like that picture so Hercules goes out into the darkness and he’s got this container and maybe you could think of that container as a cultural artifact you know because the culture protects you from chaos and then the question is what are you supposed to do with that protection and the answer is you’re supposed to wear the garb of the lion right that’s the king of the beasts so that’s supposed to be you and you’re supposed to go out there into the darkness with your bloody eyes open so you can discover what’s in the darkness and share it with everyone else and he’s got a club there in his hands and the club is covered with eyes those are eyes NOT barbs and what that means is that you should bloody well pay attention and that well the other element of that that’s not expressed in that image is that you should also speak carefully pay attention and speak carefully and then you’re the proper son of the proper father and you can keep things functioning and that makes you into this right so the city is always threatened it’s always corrupt and threatened and there’s always something outside that’s going to take it down always and that’s what’s represented by the dragon that little twist in its tail is something that represents infinity and the courageous individual goes out of the damaged city to confront the dragon of chaos and to gain something valuable as a consequence and that’s what human beings are supposed to do that’s our destiny that’s our soul that’s a better way of thinking about it and some of that terrible dragon is just the catastrophe and suffering of life and our continual attempts to transcend it but a tremendous amount of it is also the malevolence and the evil that exists in our own hearts and in society and perhaps to some degree even in the world itself you’re supposed to wake up and strengthen yourself and stand up properly and fortify yourself so that you’re a light that can shine in the darkness and that’s something that can withstand malevolence and tragedy and what did what’s your alternative you’re gonna let life crush you and make you weak and make you resentful and bitter and then murderous you’ll take out your rage on everyone you can and it’ll only be limited by your capacity to obtain power that’s not a good thing and so it’s this way or it’s this way or a way that leads directly to hell and we’ve certainly seen that plenty of times in the last hundred years and you’d think we might have learned our lesson but it takes a lot for people to learn and we’re in danger of repeating exactly the same mistakes again so you know it’s one thing to complain about the political polarization and it’s another thing to point fingers at the post modernists and the neo-marxist even though they they roundly deserve it in my estimation it’s another thing to try to figure out what the proper alternative is and the proper alternative is not in my estimation to contribute to political polarization it’s not good and it’s not that the radical right is the solution to the radical left it’s just another catastrophe and the only solution that I’ve been able to figure out and this is as a consequence of much reading and much thinking is that it’s up to the individuals in our society sort themselves out and to strengthen themselves and to become wise and alert and to shoulder the responsibility of being and the demand the ethical demand to push back malevolence in their own hearts and in their society and I also believe that you know it’s very difficult for people to respect themselves because they’re weak and vulnerable and pathetic and malevolent and so it’s know when they’re not what they could be and they know it and so it’s no wonder that people don’t respect themselves and some of that’s nature and some of that’s culture and some of its individual weakness but one of the things that I’ve learned and it’s about the only optimistic thought I’ve ever come across is that if you have enough courage to forthrightly accept the fact that you’re vulnerable and malevolent and you’re willing to do something about it to overcome it you can develop enough respect for yourself so that the terrible weight of being will not make you malevolent and corrupt and I don’t think that you have anything better to aim for unless you want blood in the streets and a pathetic life and so you might as well straighten up and get your act together and maybe we’ve got some chance of getting through this intermediary period of chaos that we all face and make something better out of it instead of something worse so that’s what I have to say about that so thank you [Applause] [Applause] I’ve dr. Pederson has agreed to do with 30 minutes of question answer still so so I should just unplug it or shut off the recording okay oh yes yes right [Music] yeah you might say that reluctant would be one way of putting it yeah so the question is I had thought about making a website well the website was actually made because you know if I’m trying to decide whether to do something usually what I do because it’s really hard to figure out if you should do something just hypothetically right so one of the ways to figure out if you should do something is to do it almost completely and then it’s there and then you’re actually thinking about something real and I talked to a bunch of people about it after it was built and thought that I wasn’t sure it would cause more that would do more good than harm so I put it on hiatus now you know one of the unfortunate things that happened was that the University of Toronto Faculty Association accused me of making this website you know on the basis of things I had said about three or four months ago without talking to me about it because why would they talk to one of their faculty members being the Faculty Association and you know so I would I would I was wavering back and forth about whether to not to do this and then they came out and attacked me and the problem with that is that now if I say I’m not going to do it it looks like they won and that’s and first of all I don’t see this as a win-loss situation I don’t like it to be construed that way but the truth of the matter is is that when the Faculty Association came out and said that you know it would be wrong for me to do it my first response was see how well you bastards I’ll be doing it now you can be sure of that but that’s not a good that’s not how to think right that’s how to react and so you don’t do that you have your little emotional meltdown and then you you think for like a month and you get people to talk to and you try to come at it from a level-headed perspective so I I don’t know I probably have most luck with YouTube videos and I have a book coming out I’m supposed to bring a flyer for all of you but you know I forgot so like I always do so and hopefully that’ll be helpful because it’s about individual responsibility fundamentally and and truth in particular which i think is what would you say well if you want to adapt to reality which is kind of what you have to do then falsifying it is probably not the most effective strategy as far as I can tell and it’s certainly the case that if you allow yourself to speak bent words that you’ll end up with a bent character and then God help you so you know I talked tonight about what I think are the words that are most dangerous diversity equity inclusivity white privilege so maybe you know the people who are watching the videos can think about how they might want to orient themselves in relationship to the mid-level bureaucrats in particular who are pushing this sort of thing forward with as much force as they can possibly manage so we’ll see that’s that’s the plan at the moment yep ha you never know hello students like they have today I’m talking about people like we could loop on the board though they are some of them steeped in Marxism they in the sense that though there are power hierarchies and structures though admittedly not all powerful that do we define human interactions that do dominate people and that do in a sense or at least in their words alienate people from themselves probably the most prominent papers the medium is the message production of new technologies the technology itself and the content it reduces we can think of newspaper articles in a newspaper the distribution of newspapers is itself content as well and how that defines well the first thing is is that it’s not particularly useful necessarily to conceptualize them as power structures because there are structures with multiple purposes and there are multiple structures and so collapsing it to power is a very bad idea the second is that we’re in a human beings are in a constant state of alienation from the world and from what they produce it’s that’s what human if you had to define human beings that would be the definition those creatures that are in a constant state of alienation from themselves culture and the world now why that is exactly I don’t know I think it has something to do with the fact that we’re self conscious but it’s an existential reality rather than an indication of the pathology of a given cultural construction you know that that’s one of the reasons I really like well Heidegger in part but the existentialist in general they just throw that out in front of you and say look yes of course you have those problems like that’s it’s always been that way the ancient Egyptians had a God that represented the corrupting they’re corrupt the corruption of the state and the corrupting influence that produced that corruption that was set and set is the is set the word set eventually becomes the word Satan I mean we’ve known this the Mesopotamians knew this they had a god Kingu who was the king of the monsters out of whose blood human beings were made it’s like the idea that we’re a lien ated from what we create it’s like yeah right absolutely that’s true so get up and do something about it you know it’s it’s not like you’re unique in your subjugation to the pathology of culture and it’s also not the case that culture is only pathological that’s the other thing that’s so that’s so disturbing I mean you have glasses on that’s a good thing you don’t bump into walls you know and so and that’s a cultural artifact you know and I’d be dead six times over if it wasn’t for various medical interventions and so you know leavening the fact that you’re oppressed with a little bit of gratitude is a really wonderful thing and one of the things that just staggers me about the the radical fringe that’s that’s that’s characterized by these ideas that we discussed tonight they have absolutely no gratitude for anything and that’s really something remarkable you know what Ignatius a human being is intolerable unless he has two things cleanliness and gratitude well maybe they manage the first count although not always but they certainly sorry about that but they certainly don’t manage this second so yeah published this morning a letter to the editor by a student government the legislative affairs committee in which they make several claims which what struck me as an attempt to slander things that happen with the c16 billing things like this but they make the assertion that you essentially abused or hide behind the banner of free speech in order to be safe or to allow yourself to all types of speech I wouldn’t say I’m hiding behind the banner of free speech precisely so that would be the first error in that I don’t think that you can characterize what I’m doing is hiding it isn’t it isn’t exactly it isn’t exactly self-evident that the right to free speech has protected me I would say a certain amount of good fortune a certain amount of caution with my words and a tremendous amount of public support is what’s protected me I also think that the ideological types who pen those pieces of nonsense have have a common what a constant theme is anyone who disagrees with with them is pathological in some manner and uses the right of free speech to exercise that pathology well you know no that’s just that’s sorry that’s not the case it’s not the case and you know most of what’s being leveled at me in terms of slurs are they’re low resolution and ill-informed you know I’m a transfer by the bigot what else I’m a racist I’m a Nazi that’s a good one I’ve been teaching about Nazism for thirty years you know trying to tell people that they probably would have been Nazis had they been in Germany during the 1930s which is at actually trying to convince them of that which is something that you might need a trigger warning for before you enter the class you know so it’s it’s it’s palpably absurd but it doesn’t matter because if the war of ideas is about power it doesn’t matter whether you represent either side with any degree of accuracy it’s just part of the Hobbesian nightmare and you know whoever spins the best story wins so yeah anyways I’ve been weirdly fortunate because every time the radicals have come after me and they really came after me last October it’s reversed every single time so and I’m not counting on that to continue but it’s been rather blackly comical as it’s been occurring so these articles it’s like as far as I’m concerned they’re a dime a dozen I don’t even have to read them anymore that’s the thing about reading something in ideologue rights you just have to look at the first sentence and infer the rest you know it’s true man it’s actually this is one of the things that Solzhenitsyn did a brilliant job of analyzing in the Gulag Archipelago he said that’s the consequence of turning your god-given soul over the human dogma you’re just a puppet for these ideas that are operating behind the scenes you think you have the ideas it’s like think again they have you and they’re doing with you what the ideas want to have done with you and when they’re done with you they’ll discard you you can be sure and you’ll be lucky if there’s anything left of you when that happens so and the universities are absolutely complicit in this they take young people whose minds are are who are looking for an identity and no wonder and they teach them this algorithmic idiocy that anyone with any brain could learn in a week that the the dictums and dogma of the oppression versus oppressed narrative god it’s unbelievable you know a decent chatbot could write most of the postmodern papers that’s why that’s why they that’s why the typical humanities 80% of humanities papers now Garner’s zero citations which means the only person who ever reads them is the person who wrote them and even they don’t do a very good job of reading them so yeah [Applause] are you are you actually serious oh well I’m sorry I was a little hard on you actually it I would say I’m more hard on your professors so it’s very brave of you to be standing there by arbitrary and it’s not the arbitrariness of nature but rather the arbitrariness structures of society like maybe nature lends its fair that’s why you get educated it’s to separate the wheat from the chaff you know because you’re a historical creature right I mean it’s outside of you and inside of you and some of its dead and corrupt as you just said and estranges for no reason no no functional reason counterproductive Lee but until you can until you understand the structures for better or for worse you’re in no position to to do anything but make them worse fundamentally the purpose of a liberal education is not to turn you into an avatar of capitalism or of or of democracy for that matter the purpose of a liberal education is to enable you to comprehend the history in which you’re embedded and then to act as an agent to to reconstruct and revitalize that hierarchy but that’s a serious matter like at 18 say and right out of high school with no experience whatsoever in life and no real education you’re in absolutely no position whatsoever to be protesting about the structure of the Western world it’s like no sorry you know your your observations about the fact that people are alienated by structures like absolutely of course and it does sort and it sorts harshly and of course because you’re young you tend to be sort of near the bottom except that I would point out that you’re young and there’s really something to that you know and you might think that you have no power because of that but I could say well you have all the power that youth gives you and that’s not trivial so where power doesn’t lie where it’s obvious you know it really doesn’t and people have more power than they think but they squander it and he often squandered on ideology when they’re not just wasting their time so anyway so it was very brave of you to stand up and ask me a question and to take all that criticism [Applause] composition agnostic atheism there is no or at least no God human computers today is intellectually hard to assail still there is good evidence religious behavior was an advantage produced by natural selection do you think that self critically acting in a way if God exists is sufficient to deliberate evolutionary wisdom or faith that’s a good question one of the things that that I read when I was reading Carl Jung he made this claim which I really liked was that whatever sits atop your pinnacle of value is functionally equivalent to God that’s good that’s really smart and I like it’s smarter than it sounds which is the case with most of the things that you wrote because it actually does turn out that our category systems are not so much about subdividing the material world into its appropriate entities but about carving up our experience in two categories of tools and obstacles so that we can attain certain valued goals and so we’re always directing our action towards the attainment of a goal and so that means we’re immersed in the value structure and so Jung’s point was whatever sits at the pinnacle of your value structure serves the function of God now you might have a fragmented value structure which means in some sense that you’re psychologically polytheistic and the problem with that is that then you’re a house divided amongst itself you’re pulling in multiple directions simultaneously impulsive people are like that right and they don’t understand themselves because one day they go left and the other day they go right and you know they they have no control over themselves at all now you said well there’s no objective God and that seems to be a reasonable hypothesis the question then I suppose becomes to what degree our subjective experience is real and that’s a matter of definition I think the religious impulse is an inevitable consequence of the fact that it’s necessary for people to live inside hierarchies of value and that we feel a sense of awe the sense of all we feel with regards to the highest values is no not distinguishable from the existence of the value itself now and there’s real advantages to the idea of a detached God in some sense and one of the things I’ve learned about archaic concepts of sovereignty is that detaching the idea of ethical of ethics itself and ethical power from the holder of power is an extraordinarily useful thing to do because otherwise the king becomes the embodiment of the God and then the King can do no wrong then you have a tyrant if the idea of power and sovereignty is detached from the individual and set up as a higher virtue that even the sovereign is is responsible to then the sovereign at least in principle can never put put himself forward as absolute and you can think about that just as a development of humans capacity to abstract right we can abstract the idea of sovereignty we can abstract the idea of ethics in virtue we can we can hypothesize that as an ideal we can embody it as a personality it’s actually quite useful because it’s something we have to act out now you might say well what relationship does that have to you know to the existence of something transcendent in the religious sense outside of that abstract conceptualization and the answer to that is we don’t know if you if you familiarize yourself with the writings of people who’ve had profound religious experiences its chronically the case that they describe encountering something that transcends them and that they describe it as more real than anything they’ve ever encountered now whether or not that constitutes proof depends on how you define proof so I’m not making a case for it one way or another but I mean Jung himself I mean when he talked about god when he was being careful he didn’t talk about god he talked about the god image in man and he was careful never to formally state that the fact that there’s an image of the ideal in the soul let’s say an archetype that that provided concrete proof that such an ideal existed you know in some transcendent manner but the world is a weird place and it’s not something I would rule out so it’s not like we understand the world very well and the materialists you know they try to they try to encapsulate the entire world within the materialist philosophy and like more power to them it’s been an unbelievably successful tool but we haven’t cracked consciousness in the lead and there is something about consciousness that’s world creating and there’s something transcendent about consciousness and it also seems capable of a kind of infinite expansion and it isn’t obvious why any of that is the case not obvious at all so yep hello okay before they were writing this stuff criticizing Marxism itself and those ideas to get right post-modernism is serving objective realities so I mean what do you make well well okay so two things I mean there’s been a number of attempts to revise Marxist theory right and so you pointed to one that’s the cultural theorists and that was after World War two when it became painfully obvious at least to the first round of people who were oriented towards the radical left but opened their eyes that there was something rotten in the state of the Soviet Union and so they did they did their best to revamp the central doctrines of Marxism using Freudian theory and so forth and as you said they were very influential among the student radicals of the 60s and it was them that gave birth to the modern crop of say postmodern neo-marxists i think that you know i couldn’t cover all of that obviously in one lecture but your your point is well-taken now you yet you ended that with a different question so but I don’t remember exactly what that question was oh yes well look I mean look the ultimate minority is the individual and the individual always stands in opposition with his or her truth to that of the mob so that’s true is that it’s very frequently the case that truth is held by something outside the general consensus now falsehood is – right so I mean if you if you have a structure that’s reasonably functional you like a little walled city and you have a hundred people outside yelling about how pathological it is 99 of them would make it worse and one of them has something useful to say and so you can’t just dispense with the minority so to speak because the majority of the minority is going to be wrong in their opposition because the one person in the minority who isn’t wrong is absolutely vital and that’s the tension that’s always the tension between the group that’s partly the mythological hero really has two roles one is to go out and conquer the dragon of darkness and to gather information and to disseminate it but the second role which is equally important is to stand up against the corrupt culture which is what Horace does for example in the ancient Egyptian stories demolish what’s what’s corrupt and then rebuild something in it’s in it’s in it’s in the aftermath you do that psychologically – you know because you have an interpretive structure through which you view the world and now and then you run into something that’s like a minority a fact that doesn’t fit and but it’s but it’s actually a fact it indicates that part of you needs to die and come encounter chaos and reconstitute yourself and that’s why there is this dynamism between the group and the individual and also why the individual is held in the West to be a power let’s say that’s super ordinate to the state the state has to recognize the validity of the individual because the individual does in the final analysis hold the redemptive truth but to put that in minority groups that’s a whole different issue that’s a sleight of hand as far as I’m concerned so all right all right well thank you very much [Applause]

100 comments

  1. I wish there was a way to compress this and keep it cogent.

    Peoples lives, the suffering of children, literally hang on enough people understanding this.

    It's not about left vs. right, its about authoritarian vs. libertarian.

    "Give me liberty or give me death."
    Because living without freedom is torture. Some people live their whole lives under relentless torture. It's the most tragic thing I can conceptualize.

  2. I just love how what Peterson says is clear that I find my leftest associates shocked that they understand and like what is siad

  3. I spent an entire day reading about the Communist uprising in Russia; crazy stuff. Lennin was just as bad as Stalin; he even ordered factory workers to be killed because they went on strike. The irony of that is beyond comprehension.

  4. I fear that Peterson's detractors will see him as the ultimate evil of our time, when all he is really doing is disseminating objective truth and trying to talk sense into us all. We need him and people like him more than ever. It seems as if we are at a tipping point in our history and it's really not clear which way we're going to go.

    If there is a god, may he, or she, bless us all.

  5. If conservatives are good at distancing themselves from the crackpot right, how did the US end up with a psychopathic game show host as president?

  6. 30:00 I love JBP but he needs to rethink his assertion that Hobbes is in anyway the foundation of Socialism. Every economist would tell you that the "Hobbesian Nightmare" is the foundation of Capitalism. Men are in constant competition. It is the more idealistic and egalitarian notions of someone like John Locke that lead to Marxism. Locke for example said that Man has a right to property because he works the land… sound familiar?

  7. Postmodernists include all people in a category as equal. They attempt to undermine any hierarchical organization of people beyond that. THAT'S why it leads to Marxism. they don't believe in differing outputs they believe that we're simply judging the outputs by a faulty standard. It's important to note that Marx is obsessed with property rights, he believes all people have an equal right to all property, what a lunatic.

  8. I wonder where we would be, in Dr Petersons opinion, if something around a billion people hand not been murdered in the name of christ?

  9. Jordan, this was a really outstanding speech! When youre speaking vigorously against that shallow but still powerful crab of the PM's, you remind me of Jesus in the temple, when he was raging against the traiders there. For me, youre the most impressiv and whats more important, the most honest person I know on Youtube, and also, the most important. Almost holy, what you are doing, but holy is everything, which is coming out of the core of our being, but its very seldom seeing someone doing this so pure than you do! Thank you for all the things you do for all of us!

  10. The Postmodernists and Nostalgomarxists suffer of loosing their narrative about the world. Their illusionary ideologies were crushed by reality, but instead of confessing, they were wrong and mankind was not made for this fantasy land, they started to victimize the whole world of the unsuccesful, instead of offering them ways out of their mist. Being the master of the victims, gives you power and the vain selfimpression of beig altruistic. What a lie! The lefties have also lost their task of the past, to be supportive to the workingclass, cause not much was left to do, so they also made everyone to a victim of society. Many people take rather the poisonous track of being a victim, than a way of humbleness and selfresponsability, even though, a victim stays a victim, stays a victim until eternity, if they dont get to hear about Jordan and other clearseeing helpers.

  11. Peterson's comments about competence hierarchies illuminate a key problem of the original formulations of Communism, not just of Postmodern Neo-Marxismβ€” namely, the fact that more skilled workers should earn greater compensation for their work, or else the whole system collapses. Even the Soviet Union implicitly acknowledged the law of supply and demand, by paying a nuclear technician more than a fishmonger.

  12. Funny how Derrida and Foucault's relationship resembles Jack and Marla's in Fight Club before they had the agreement to split the "faking in support groups". Heh.

  13. There may be an infinite amount of ways to look at something, like the postmodernist say. that doesn't mean most of these ways are radically different. There is virtually an infinite amount of ways the molecules of air in your room could be arranged. Most of them look like they are evenly spread. so, by sheer probabilities, air fill all the space it has, because even though it could behave in an infinite variations of ways, virtually all of those basically are the same. I am always annoyed at people who don't know maths using concepts like infinity and abuse them. (meaning at postmodernist, not at Peterson). it's like Deepak Chopra and his abuse of quantum theory.

  14. pure socialism will never work. Hate may be a part of it but it's not the whole story. Greed plays a part in it. I mean their are some good functional parts of socialism things such as public roads and bridges.

  15. I am ready to abide to any totalitarian regime the strongly enforces a prohibition on people asking questions without a microfone in a a public recorded event.

  16. Given Dr. Peterson verbal fluency, I can only assume that any sign language interpreter that serves in his lectures would end up a kung fu master.

  17. Foucault was not a Marxist or thought like a Marxist theorist. He spent most of his life trying to come up with a way of thinking that was no longer tied to the history of Marxist thought. I am very confused when people claim that Foucault is responsible for post-modern thought or at the center of post-modern thought. After all, he criticized historically liberal institutions and ideas. When an author's ideas are borrowed by others, the author is not responsible for how and what the followers think (Marxist, Kuhnian, Popperians, Freudians, etc). Especially, when the followers have terribly misinterpreted the author's ideas (he warned us about this). It is not possible to be a Foucauldian! I will leave this quote, from an introduction to his essays on ethics, that I think can open a window into what is often dangerously over-looked: "What was needed was not a means of making everyone the same but of creating new modes of being together."

  18. Dr. Peterson, Thank you for speaking about the Holodomor, the Soviet genocide of Ukrainians by hunger. It truly isn't taught anywhere!

  19. What a great presentation by you Doctor Peterson. Thank you so much for enlightening our generation.

  20. A question:

    How many "campus indoctrination" schticks is Jordan Peterson going to do before SOMEONE REALISES that he, himself, is too entangled in his own fucking brain to understand that HE is part of the problem, simply by association??

    Jordan. Babydoll.
    You are fighting an arsonist with a squirt gun, Man.

    The living, working, big-boys and girls are too busy living and working.
    No one GIVES a fuck what goes on in college, Man.

  21. Here is where I fully disagree with you professor, W.F Buckley was a fake conservative and more a warmonger, neo-con artist. The John Birch Society was right on Buckley and the "internationalists" you refer to as globalist.

  22. Could anyone point towards who Dr. Peterson is talking about at 45:24? I tried typing that name (as best as I could discern it) but have had no success…

  23. I feel a bit like a secret agent going into the teaching world as a high school math teacher with no intention of assisting in the indoctrination of children, if anything I will do my up most to reverse it if the opportunity presents itself. We don't have strict speech laws in Australia (yet), but I still fear instantly losing my job when they find out that I'm not a yes man, is there a way of treading carefully so that I may help students not fall to the agenda of the left while not becoming instantly homeless? Or is that just part of the package when you come out as a level headed human?

  24. "Some people can't be convinced by anyone's death but their own, I suppose." I absolutely loved this line from your lecture, Dr. Peterson. I would love to have a moment to speak with you, or perhaps only to attend one of your lectures, some day. Continue digging, & keep up your impressive work. & of course: thank you.

  25. I don't believe Jordan Peterson is Jesus Christ…I do believe he represents the second coming, real or imagined in the sense that I hold what he says to be self evident. Truth does not discriminate or hold malevolence…It can be ugly or profound but ultimately truth is the testament to what has already occured…The past tense of all that has transpired.A mirror of sorts.
    I'm Ok with JP representing JC.

  26. People tend to suffer in life in proportion to their attachments and aversions. Let go on an ongoing basis with the mediation that nothing out there will make you happy, only you can make that happen.

  27. As an artstudent at an official fine arts university, Jordan Peterson has saved me. The pressure to conform to postmodern, deconstructivism, intersectionalism and archival theory was so strong it almost destroyed me completely, I got so ill, so depressed and furious and unstable. All I knew was that I did not want to be a part of it, but was pretty much confused and lost in the wilderness – which led me to escape intellectually into norse mythology, elflore and fantasy, and that's how I stumbled across Peterson. Thanks to that I have been able to educate myself and not drop out, and made a positive impact on other students and professors. I also have a really nice room now. "Have you read Foucalt?" One professor asked, "No" I answered. "You have to", he said "Otherwise no one in the art world will take you seriously." I've still never read Foucalt, I've never taken the art world seriously.

  28. There are some very good arguments there, and then all undermined by the flaws of historical arguments, and attacking the persons not solely their philosophy :/ its a damn pity

  29. My husband and I went to this lecture! It was great! And the bit at the end during the Q&A concerning the student letter was hilarious to watch unfold:) worth the 9 hour drive. 10/10 would do again!

  30. Selling utopia and deliver misery spread widely for everyone except themselves. Because they know better without a shred of proof.

  31. It must be nice to sit in high towers and make recommendations for how everyone else lives according to insane theories which sound nice for the people who you intend to obey you or die right away. The beatings will continue until morale improves, I guess.

  32. Jordan Peterson has to stop calling people who think communism is a good idea intellectuals, maybe in the early 20th century before it was implemented was ok. We have to assume those who are highly educated and think communism is a good idea in this day and age have collapsed under the weight of their own education. It happens all the time some people cannot handle the pressures and stress that comes with higher education and the people that are pushing these ideas have too be portrayed as possibly unstable or unable to think in a stable manner, NOT intellectuals.

  33. One of things I like most about Dr. P. is that he has more confidence in my ability to figure out what he's saying than I do. Still working at concatenating the info into a holistic understanding.

  34. "If there's no hero, why go to the movie…? You don't want to watch a bunch of people bumble around randomly." Star Wars: The Last Jedi anyone?

  35. A propos the brutish top gorilla; Machiavelli advised his principe not to appropriate and assault and dishonour the wives and daughters of his social allies (nobility and middle class as well as the common people). The ruler needs support of allies in order to rule effectively.

  36. I feel sorry for all the people in that classroom who are taking on mounds of debt to attend that College when I can get every single one of Dr. Peterson's lectures right here on YouTube for free.

  37. Boiling it down, Peterson and Terence McKenna are in crisp agreement: Ideology is NOT YOUR FRIEND. I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to hear Peterson's thoughts on the Voynich Manuscript or McKennas speech about Finnegans Wake!!! And I say this only because he is so articulate as to also probably have some immensely fascinating things about great art. Thomas Merton said some of the most profound ideas about ART in the 20th Cent. then any other English poet I know of. In some ways you can know that Merton (who lived a vow of silence and never spoke) was AT LEAST as deep a thinker as Dr. Peterson.

  38. A bit relieved my 9 and half month old grandson has a chance if youngsters in higher education now take responsibility on what being a man is, for now we're in charge.

  39. Well, kudos to the young author of the document who had the monstrous internal fortitude to stand and admit that, and to be open-minded enough to question his stances and discuss them in an open and non-combative way. I applaud you, Sir!

  40. I love Jordan Peterson but I can't imagine what it would be like to have to write a paper for him to critique. I wouldn't be able to sleep knowing that he was going to read and grade my paper.

  41. Brian mckelvik who lives in Larne NIreland went to the US to visit New York he saw a coloured man on the opposite side of the street total stranger, yet they recognized eachother, Brian went over to meet the man, and the man said to him, "where you taken" Brian replied no, white were taken as slaves for the plantations in Jamaica long before Africans, Brian's ancestors were taken from Scotland the isle of Bute, how did they recognize each other, the shape of their eyebrows, so white privilege is out the window, both Brian and the other man talked for a while of how they had come to be in the world and life in general, but like it's said we are all in each other. The ones who are looking to divide and the ones you need to watch.

  42. 41:41 Marx's predictions haven't failed. He predicted that capitalism would continue to expand and globalize, eventually replacing human labor with machines. This replacement is leading our society into a fundamental crisis, an overcoming of the contradiction at the heart of capitalist ideology.

    How much of that miraculous increase in English wealth during the 19th century is due to the glories of capitalism, and how much of it is actually the stolen labor of enslaved African Americans? (In 1860, 75% of Britain's imported cotton came from the USA).

    https://footnotes2plato.com/2016/06/19/slavery-and-capitalism-in-america/

    Communist ideology is evil. Capitalist Ideology is evil. Let's put our heads/hearts/hands together and come up with something better. Because the people and the planet are beginning to boil over. Old structures are crumbling to make way for the new. Chaos is coming. Tiamat's revenge on Marduk. It'd be best if we worked together to build an ark now while our tools still work, better than going to war against caricatures of one another (which, I have to say, you totally caricature [or misunderstand] the postmodernists [you're not a fan of Foucault and Derrida, but what about Deleuze?]; but I also grant that every legacy media liberal print or TV journalist to profile you did you the same favor).

  43. Agreed, though, that we cannot do without grand narratives. "We" cannot be a people, a we, without myth. https://footnotes2plato.com/2010/05/09/our-planetary-moment-a-journey-through-cosmic-time/

  44. "… or leave them alive, if you're especially malevolent."

    That is exactly the thing. Sure, the Soviet Union and China killed tens of millions of people. But the true malevolency they were capable of is keeping the hundreds of millions of survivors alive without any means for them to escape these hellish places. Marxism is pure pathological and methodical evil. It's like Orwell described in 1984: The objective of torture is torture.

  45. Your story about the woman new to Holland reminded me of something. Years ago, I had a friend from Ethiopia who hadn't been here long. One day we were driving and she said, "America good". I agreed but asked her why she said that. She replied, "This light green, they go; this light red, they stop. This good."

  46. This was almost high iq stand up. JBP was on fire. Although the material wasn't flippant.
    Good audience too. That guys one liner in the q&a was truly comedic.

  47. Post modernism only thrives because it seemingly absolves perpetrators of any responsibility. It has no intellectual merit. It serves only egotistical motives.

  48. "life is a problem of suffering", well that, unless it is a journey to growth. And what is growth? To love one's neighbor as oneself.

  49. I don't recall ever listening to this one, but God damn, JBP doesn't pull any punches here, does he? Absolutely brutal, and a excellent talk.🀘

  50. Marxist had a solution and then set about finding justifications to force that solution… Most of Marx' family committed suicide… or did he kill them? Not a man to lead the world into any solution…

  51. You know you are dealing w/an ideology when humans make concession after concession to these demons… Americans pay practically double for their cars to make sure they don't emit toxins into the air… We pay a fortune in taxes to keep the waterways clean and the air…Corporations spend a fortune to not put toxins into the water and air… They have extracted a disproportionate amount of America's income for their environmental scam… yet never a concession.. never a "well we're getting there"… no its always worse than ever… we are destroying the planet… we are devils… evil… They are pathetic liars and frauds and only want the end result and care nothing of actual planetary health and human well-being… this is their ruse to takeover and kill humankind…

  52. Postmodernists are skeptical towards grand narratives…except the grand narrative that the world is a patriarchal conspiracy of all men to oppress all women etc.

  53. Absolutely brilliant! So grateful for this man! β€πŸ’•πŸ”₯πŸ”₯πŸ”₯πŸ™Œ

  54. Many of the black people who claim whites are naturally privileged live in mansions. I live in a one-bedroom shoebox but at least I'm not insane.

  55. 3 cheers for Dr. Peterson! Stepped right into one of the centers of identity politics (Madison WI). and won over at least a part of it. Being a Wisconsin native, I'm proud that we have prudence in spite of efforts to impose identity politics from without. Dr. Peterson is a modern Burkean through and through.

  56. South Africa is another Marxist disaster in the making.Thank you ,Prof. Peterson for your efforts to enlighten mankind,its truly appreciated.

  57. after the introducing, I thought he is going to give him a hug than it turned out "give me that mic"LOL .my crush prof

  58. Much of this is on base, but Peterson is much preferable within his psychology/philosophy wheelhouse.

  59. It really isn't an exaggeration at all to describe what Peterson is spouting here as truly lazy, ignorant nonsense. If anyone is actually interested in a concise explanation as to the specifics of why, I recommend: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cU1LhcEh8Ms

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