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Thread: Inauguration Day, Inauguration Hooooooraaay!

  1. #7281
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    No wonder college students have all become Stalinists. Disney, purveyor of cultural Marxist relativism, are telling them it's wrong to be white!

  2. #7282
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    Damn, the cultural Marxists are at it again, shaming me for my center-right views.

  3. #7283
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post


    No wonder college students have all become Stalinists. Disney, purveyor of cultural Marxist relativism, are telling them it's wrong to be white!
    “I think there is blame on both sides”

  4. #7284

  5. #7285
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    So people listen to Jordan Peterson because he offers 12-step self help pablum.

    Okay.

  6. #7286
    .
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-13-2018 at 03:07 PM.

  7. #7287
    WHEN THE **** HAS THAT BEEN A STANDARD UI PRACTICE? Right, NEVER!
    Since mobile took over. It's pretty standard behavior.
    TAKES HINTS JUST FINE, STILL DOESN'T CARE

  8. #7288
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    So I want to give an actual treatment of Jordan Peterson. No, not a flamey lambast, but this time an actual treatment of why I think he's not that impressive.

    First: his self help. I have nothing against self help. I have listened to him speak about them before, and they seem like alright advice. He throws in random stuff that I think is dubious, to say the least, but you know, clean your room and treat yourself with respect I think are good advice and, if there are people out there who are really in a dump and need the help, and for some reason he clicks and motivates them, then I think that's a good thing.

    His Jungian psychoanalysis: I also have nothing against. I listened for a while to him speak about Pinocchio, and even though alot of it was probably bull****, despite that he pulls some insights that are entertaining and interesting. He also does give good information, for instance, in one video he discussed how predators work, like how pedophiles know to select children who aren't confident, so inspiring confidence in your children is good. That's a good message. However he does seem to use the Jungian archetype scheme to reinforce gender stereotypes, which leads my into my point about his politics.

    His politics: I disagree with, to a large extent. This will be a surprise to nobody, but I think it matters. I think he very obviously pushes a reactionary message that, at best, is just normal conservatism, but at times can also be very sexist. Evopsych is bull****. I mean, the evopsych he speaks about is generally not extremely implausible, but anyone who's familiar with alt-right memes (as in, actual memes) will know that evopsych is rarely used in popular culture in any way that isn't justifying sexism.

    But with all of this understood, the biggest problem I have with him come from when he's speaking outside of his area of expertise. This is where I find the biggest mistakes, the mistakes that mislead people so much.

    For instance, his public display about C-16, the thing that made him popular, was such a completely incorrect way of interpreting it, that it should make anyone question either his honesty or his competence.

    For instance, let's hear what Cossman, a law professor at U Toronto, had to say about it:

    “I don’t know if he’s misunderstanding it, but he’s mischaracterizing it,” Cossman says.

    Cossman says it seems Peterson is trying to argue that the misuse of pronouns could constitute hate speech.


    “I don’t think there’s any legal expert that would say that [this] would meet the threshold for hate speech in Canada,” she says.
    In other words, a person who's an actual professional in law, i.e. a person who should know, unlike Jordan Peterson who has no expertise in law, said his interpretation is bull****. This should basically be the end of discussion. Jordan Peterson doesn't know what he's talking about

    The problem is, this is a repeat offense with Jordan Peterson. Whenever he's speaking outside of his field, he ends up making a bunch of errors. Consider postmodernists. Jordan Peterson encourages people to learn about postmodernism from the book Explaining Postmodernism by Hicks. Hicks' book is one that's deeply misleading. I'll copy the opinions of a professional philosopher on this book:

    Hicks' Explaining Postmodernism--is self-published by someone with no relevant research record, takes as its starting point Ayn Rand's crankish views about philosophy's history, and has been lambasted in academic reviews, likewise suggests to me a great deal of suspicion. Whatever their source, his references to philosophy often misrepresent the material to the point of just being bizarre, and not really rising to the level where a substantive, scholarly engagement would be meaningful.
    This same philosopher goes on to talk about Peterson:

    That said, although he typically makes a mess of trying to connect them to broader themes in philosophy and history, there's nothing inherently nonsensical nor plainly unfounded about what seem, on the grounds of some charitable reconstruction, to be his main philosophical commitments. Major themes in his work, like the pragmatist criticism of the correspondence theory of truth and the vision of objective rationality that goes along with it, and the conservative arguments for the authority of tradition being privileged over rational critique on the grounds of the resulting skepticism about reason's abilities, have philosophically competent and influential defenders. Nietzsche is an example, which Peterson himself rightly gives.


    Though, for the same reason, it's not clear what use Peterson is here, except as a gateway to more capable exponents of these ideas.
    In other words, this person is of the opinion that, Peterson isn't, like, egregiously wrong about anything. And that's correct, Peterson isn't so wrong as to be completely dismissed. Why, then, do I dislike this aspect of him? Well, because frankly, he speaks to a wide audience of laymen. His understanding of postmodern philosophy is, to put it charitably, very much biased and goes against the mainstream of philosophical understanding, with the end goal of pushing a narrative about their pernicious effects. At the very least, he's taking thousands of people who wouldn't know better and is misrepresenting academic subjects to them. That's why I think he needs to stop his attack on postmodernism until he is willing to sit down and actually face postmodern thought with honesty, and get an evaluation of it that accurately represents philosophical thought.

    This isn't an absurd demand. If he's so interested, he's a professor at a University, all he has to do is meet some people in the philosophy department, have a few discusses and read some suggestions. That's what a person devoted to accurate representation of the facts would do. His actions reflect a person who's a demagogue.

    I'll quote another philosopher on the topic of Derrida, whom Jordan Peterson quotes as an example that postmodernism is "anti-truth":

    Not going to bother with the link but I assume Jordan Peterson is referencing the oft-repeated quote by Derrida, il n'y a pas de hors-texte, mistranslated as "there is nothing outside the text," from Of Grammatology. This is often taken as evidence that Derrida denies any reality/meaning/whatever outside of language. Of course, that's categorically not the claim. In the passage that the quote is taken from, Derrida is laying out his methodology for reading a text, specifically Rousseau's Confessions. Basically, in reading a text, Derrida is considering just the elements in text just as they appear in the text and not in reference to things outside the text, and gives his reasons for this. You can find it on page 201 of this pdf of Of Grammatology.

    "Yet if reading must not be content with doubling the text, it cannot legitimately transgress the text toward something other than it, toward a referent (a reality that is metaphysical, historical, psychobiographical, etc.) or toward a signified outside the text whose content could take place, could have taken place outside of language, that is to say, in the sense that we give here to that word, outside of writing in general. That is why the methodological considerations that we risk applying here to an example are closely dependent on general propositions that we have elaborated above; as regards the absence of the referent or the transcendental signified. There is nothing outside of the text. [there is no outside-text; il n’y a pas de hors-texte]."

    And on a personal note, the kind of fact-free narrative-building that Peterson and others engage in resembles exactly the most toxic aspects of the "postmodern condition" that writers like Lyotard and Baudrillard noted.
    In other words, Peterson selected a manufactured quote from a text to misrepresent Derrida and paint a fictional narrative about postmodernism. There's so much wrong with that, none the least of which being Derrida isn't a postmodernist, he's a post-structuralist, a group of thinkers at odds with postmodernism. Derrida is anti-postmodernism.

    In other words, actually engaging in a serious and long intellectual history is hard. Peterson chooses to ignore that and slap at the easy misrepresentations he can pick. It shows a disrespect of academic culture.

    So yes, Jordan Peterson does do some fine things. But basically, with the bill and on, I think his popularity has gone to his head, to where he's thrown out the desire to be a serious academic in favor of being an edgy political demagogue and rabble rouser.

  9. #7289
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    And yes, I think people who take up the torch of wanting to be a public intellectual owe it to the public to do accurate, good-faith research of the topics they're trying to popularize and represent them fairly.

    There are plenty of good criticisms to be had of postmodernists, too. But Jordan Peterson doesn't know enough to give those critiques.

  10. #7290
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    In other words, this person is of the opinion that, Peterson isn't, like, egregiously wrong about anything. And that's correct, Peterson isn't so wrong as to be completely dismissed. Why, then, do I dislike this aspect of him? Well, because frankly, he speaks to a wide audience of laymen. His understanding of postmodern philosophy is, to put it charitably, very much biased and goes against the mainstream of philosophical understanding, with the end goal of pushing a narrative about their pernicious effects. At the very least, he's taking thousands of people who wouldn't know better and is misrepresenting academic subjects to them. That's why I think he needs to stop his attack on postmodernism until he is willing to sit down and actually face postmodern thought with honesty, and get an evaluation of it that accurately represents philosophical thought.

    This isn't an absurd demand. If he's so interested, he's a professor at a University, all he has to do is meet some people in the philosophy department, have a few discusses and read some suggestions. That's what a person devoted to accurate representation of the facts would do. His actions reflect a person who's a demagogue.
    If you knew much about the University of Toronto philosophy department, you'd know that it isn't a exactly a hotbed for the study of continental philosophy. See, for instance, the authoritative ranking of philosophy departments in the English-speaking world, the philosophical gourmet report: http://www.philosophicalgourmet.com/breakdown.asp , where it doesn't even make the list for 20th century continental philosophy. If you went to the faculty page for the University of Toronto and search by expertise, you'd find that among professors listed as experts in continental philosophy, none claim expertise in the Derrida's thought, and if you do a search for the keyword "Derrida", only two graduate students will come up, and they cite Derrida's thought as an interest. Now, there may be people at Toronto who do do work on Derrida, but I expect that they aren't in the philosophy department, because, in general, at elite Anglophone universities such as UofT, Analytic philosophy the the primary framework through which philosophy is done. Usually, Analytic philosophers are hostile to continental thought. Which means thatyou'll find no shortage of professors in prestigious philosophy departments who, despite having PhDs in Philosophy from top universities, will openly call Derrida a charlatan. I suppose they should be ashamed of themselves for having a strong opinion about something which is not their "expertise".

    Anyway, the point is: Jordan Peterson's arguments about postmodernism and Derrida actually have more to do with a lot of the consensus opinions you'd find in philosophy departments. You might have to go to an English department or a Comparative Literature department to find someone who is a little more sympathetic to Derrida.

    As you said, Derrida's thought is difficult. Now, I don't know who you're citing about On Grammatology. I don't know who this "philosopher" is, or whether or not it's from reddit. You didn't link to the citation, after all. But I can say that after reading that paragraph cited from On Grammatology... who knows whether it's fair to say that Derrida is "anti-truth"? The term "anti-truth" is already pretty vague to begin with, but that text from Derrida is also nearly indecipherable without more context. What is even "outside-text"? It's possible that by text here, Derrida does not mean a literal text (such as Rousseau's Confessions, or Augustine's Confessions, or nearly any specific text), as much as the entire system of sign and signified that make up language. Now I really don't know, and I'm only saying that speculatively as one way that that paragraph could be interpreted without much to go on for context. But the idea that someone can invalidate Peterson's assertion merely by citing that paragraph without a thorough explanation of the terminology Derrida is using is off the mark.

    Now, one could say "if you had done the appropriate research, you would have known these things before you posted, and thus you wouldn't have disseminated errors". It seems like that, after all, is your chief criticism of Peterson; that he's irresponsible for not taking sufficient care to check that what he argued publicly is, in fact, "correct", and that he's at fault for disseminating lies. But, if I may say so, I think you're setting too high a bar for public discussion. It's very difficult to be right about anything. There is very little that is beyond doubt. There's very little that's beyond dispute. And that's just the nature of public discourse. People are free to say what they want, without being policed about the "truth" of what they have to say before they say it. And others are free to disagree with them, and, hopefully, correct them if they are wrong.

    If you go back to Mill, that's one of the things public debate is supposed to do. People are supposed to express their convictions openly, and, by being criticized and scrutinized, ideas will be refined and perfected. Or you could go back to Plato: political discourse isn't a sphere of truth at all. It's a sphere of opinion, and even, of falsehood.

    I can't help but think Jones' criticisms in his lengthy post above were pretty spot on. You're demanding too much from public intellectuals. You can't always wait until you're 100% certain about your idea before you publish it. Authors -- whether they work in the academy, or whether they're journalists or literary figures -- have deadlines. Not only experts (whatever an "expert" is) are entitled to an opinion, and you shouldn't have to be an expert on a specific topic in order to say something about it publicly.
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-14-2018 at 05:21 AM.

  11. #7291
    It turns out the quote is from a renowned authority of philosophy, the famed reddit account, sh!tgenstein. Indeed, this venerable mind is as deserving of the title of "expert" as any I have ever come across.

  12. #7292
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    in general, at elite Anglophone universities such as UofT, Analytic philosophy the the primary framework through which philosophy is done.
    Also at the non-elite ones.

  13. #7293
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    If you knew much about the University of Toronto philosophy department, you'd know that it isn't a exactly a hotbed for the study of continental philosophy.
    It doesn't have anything to do with whether the department is a hotbed for continental philosophy. Anyone serious in philosophy could give him the same critique, and many have. Even people generally opposed to postmodernism recognize his critiques are misguided.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    Anyway, the point is: Jordan Peterson's arguments about postmodernism and Derrida actually have more to do with a lot of the consensus opinions you'd find in philosophy departments. You might have to go to an English department or a Comparative Literature department to find someone who is a little more sympathetic to Derrida.
    Agreed, Derrida in specific is not popular in philosophy departments. But at least the criticisms you'll hear in philosophy departments are cogent.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    As you said, Derrida's thought is difficult. Now, I don't know who you're citing about On Grammatology. I don't know who this "philosopher" is, or whether or not it's from reddit. You didn't link to the citation, after all. But I can say that after reading that paragraph cited from On Grammatology... who knows whether it's fair to say that Derrida is "anti-truth"? The term "anti-truth" is already pretty vague to begin with, but that text from Derrida is also nearly indecipherable without more context. What is even "outside-text"? It's possible that by text here, Derrida does not mean a literal text (such as Rousseau's Confessions, or Augustine's Confessions, or nearly any specific text), as much as the entire system of sign and signified that make up language. Now I really don't know, and I'm only saying that speculatively as one way that that paragraph could be interpreted without much to go on for context. But the idea that someone can invalidate Peterson's assertion merely by citing that paragraph without a thorough explanation of the terminology Derrida is using is off the mark.
    These criticisms you're making of the critique of Peterson would only doubly or triply apply to Peterson himself.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    Now, one could say "if you had done the appropriate research, you would have known these things before you posted, and thus you wouldn't have disseminated errors". It seems like that, after all, is your chief criticism of Peterson; that he's irresponsible for not taking sufficient care to check that what he argued publicly is, in fact, "correct", and that he's at fault for disseminating lies. But, if I may say so, I think you're setting too high a bar for public discussion. It's very difficult to be right about anything. There is very little that is beyond doubt. There's very little that's beyond dispute. And that's just the nature of public discourse. People are free to say what they want, without being policed about the "truth" of what they have to say before they say it. And others are free to disagree with them, and, hopefully, correct them if they are wrong.
    Now let's be clear here: I'm not criticizing him for making stupid statements publicly. The issue is rather that he persists in this view despite there being many people who have criticized him. Peterson afaik has done some effort in responding, but frankly he seems more interested in speaking to his core audience and ignoring criticism than in actually engaging in it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    If you go back to Mill, that's one of the things public debate is supposed to do. People are supposed to express their convictions openly, and, by being criticized and scrutinized, ideas will be refined and perfected. Or you could go back to Plato: political discourse isn't a sphere of truth at all. It's a sphere of opinion, and even, of falsehood.
    The open criticisms of Peterson still stand with largely no significant reply. If Peterson would refine his view, the criticism wouldn't apply. Instead he repeats the views half-cocked from a poor source and interviews with Stefan Molyneux.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    I can't help but think Jones' criticisms in his lengthy post above were pretty spot on. You're demanding too much from public intellectuals.
    You're not demanding enough.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    You can't always wait until you're 100% certain about your idea before you publish it. Authors -- whether they work in the academy, or whether they're journalists or literary figures -- have deadlines. Not only experts (whatever an "expert" is) are entitled to an opinion, and you shouldn't have to be an expert on a specific topic in order to say something about it publicly.
    Nope, but you should actually deal with criticism and do more with your life than beat up on undergraduates and speak in echo chambers.

  14. #7294
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    It turns out the quote is from a renowned authority of philosophy, the famed reddit account, sh!tgenstein. Indeed, this venerable mind is as deserving of the title of "expert" as any I have ever come across.
    I did not call them an expert, I called the other person I quoted an expert, at least unless you believe they're lying about being a professional philosopher.

    Please read and respond accurately.

  15. #7295
    I have to say, I think many of Peterson's remarks about the history of philosophy are actually pretty astute and well-informed, even if he's somewhat polemical. It makes me miss Canada, where I'm pretty sure even non-experts on the history of philosophy are better informed about the subject than so-called "experts" in the States.

  16. #7296
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    And yes, any undergraduate in philosophy knows more about philosophy than Peterson does. He's a layman whose interpretations border on misinterpretation, and generally stay at the level of intro textbooks.
    Last edited by Reid; 02-14-2018 at 05:40 AM.

  17. #7297
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    I have to say, I think many of Peterson's remarks about the history of philosophy are actually pretty astute and well-informed, even if he's somewhat polemical. It makes me miss Canada, where I'm pretty sure even non-experts on the history of philosophy are better informed about the subject than so-called "experts" in the States.
    Are you equipped to judge his expertise in the history of philosophy?

  18. #7298
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    Peterson is a psychologist, the lowest of the social sciences.

    His opinion about virtually everything he discusses is no more relevant, informed, or important than anything that’s been posted in this thread.

  19. #7299
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    Agreed, Derrida in specific is not popular in philosophy departments. But at least the criticisms you'll hear in philosophy departments are cogent.
    Heh, I actually disagree with this. In my experience, which, admittedly, is anecdotal, many analytic philosophers who have strong opinions about Derrida haven't even read him. Peterson actually seems to have tried pretty hard to understand him.

    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    These criticisms you're making of the critique of Peterson would only doubly or triply apply to Peterson himself.

    Maybe, but I thing you're missing is that that's not the standard according to which I'm interested in judging Peterson. Criticisms of "sloppy" scholarship or dishonest argumentation are easy and cheap ways to dismiss someone without having actually having to deal with what they say, and are accusations you can make no matter how well argued someone's work is. (Speaking of which, have you even read his book, which you're attacking so vociferously?) No, I'm not really interested in these kinds of arguments. They're just various ad hominem attacks. It's one thing to say, "here are some compelling reasons why I think Jordan Peterson is wrong". It's another to say, "look, people are criticizing Peterson on reddit, therefore he's bad".


    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    And yes, any undergraduate in philosophy knows more about philosophy than Peterson does. He's a layman who's interpretations border on misinterpretation, and generally stay at the level of intro textbooks.

    Sorry man. That's just not true. I've spent too much time around undergraduates, and too much time in philosophy departments, for me to find that very convincing. I think you're barking up the wrong tree here with your criticisms of Peterson.
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-14-2018 at 05:56 AM.

  20. #7300
    It's not even uncommon for top experts in any field to have outright loony ideas about unrelated topics.

    William Shockley would have loved to tell us all about his theories about the intelligence of black people, but it turns out that solid state physics doesn't make for much of a foundation for understanding psychology or biology.

  21. #7301
    I think it's fair to say that Reid probably knows more about philosophy than most philosophy undergraduates. Let's not idealize your typical student too much now!

  22. #7302
    I'm not sure there is a name for this, but there has to be an effect by which studying a topic in great depth generally distorts your idea about how much others know about the topic: once you've learned it, it feels so natural that it's hard to imagine that there are people out there who haven't lived long enough to appreciate things that you now feel like you've known for an eternity.

  23. #7303
    I don't want to give the impression that I think Peterson's right in his assessment of Derrida and postmodernism or whatever else. His political worldview is primarily a liberal one which privileges Enlightenment thought (as he understands it) as a high water mark in western history and as a desired norm for society. Of course he'd disagree with Derrida and other so-called postmodernists; they're part of a tradition which was trying to question some of the core aspirations and assumptions of the Enlightenment project. Really, I just enjoy hearing him speak when he talks about these thinkers because's fairly well-spoken, and more knowledgeable about the history of philosophy than most public intellectuals out there (given how few public intellectuals in the states, it wouldn't take much). It doesn't mean I agree with him. (In fact, I probably never would've heard of him if it weren't for these forums.) I just find a lot of these attempts to undercut him to be... sophomoric.

    Look, he's given us his ideas; disagree with them, agree with them, do whatever you want. But personally, I don't really care for this form of politics where you demonize people for the reasonable things (even if incorrect) they say because you see them as some kind of political enemy.
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-14-2018 at 06:16 AM.

  24. #7304
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    Heh, I actually disagree with this. In my experience, which, admittedly, is anecdotal, many analytic philosophers who have strong opinions about Derrida haven't even read him. Peterson actually seems to have tried pretty hard to understand him.
    I think it's a bit absurd to imply a large part of analytic philosophy has a worse understanding of Derrida than Jordan Peterson. I could be wrong, but I haven't heard any criticisms from him that imply he's read any Derrida or Derrida interpretation carefully, just things he's picked up 2nd hand from books like Hicks'.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    Maybe, but I thing you're missing is that that's not the standard according to which I'm interested in judging Peterson. Criticisms of "sloppy" scholarship or dishonest argumentation are easy and cheap ways to dismiss someone without having actually having to deal with what they say, and are accusations you can make no matter how well argued someone's work is. (Speaking of which, have you even read his book, which you're attacking so vociferously?) No, I'm not really interested in these kinds of arguments. They're just various ad hominem attacks. It's one thing to say, "here are some compelling reasons why I think Jordan Peterson is wrong". It's another to say, "look, people are criticizing Peterson on reddit, therefore he's bad".
    It's a qualified ad hominem. I'm not an expert at all in continental philosophy, I haven't spent much* time reading anyone you would call postmodern (Derrida, Lyotard, or anyone from the Frankfurt School). So I don't have a choice but to defer to experts to some degree. And if the choice is between Peterson's view, or what seems to be a consensus among practicing philosophers, I'm going to defer to the philosophers.

    If you're going to attack me for this, then fine, but I'm not about to change course in how I engage with these sorts of intellectual topics.

    I haven't read his book, I've only listened to what Jordan Peterson says about these topics.

    * I have read sections from Baudrillard and Derrida, but not to any large extent.
    Last edited by Reid; 02-14-2018 at 06:20 AM. Reason: words

  25. #7305
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultima...ribution_error

    Your expectations of him are likely higher because he is a member of the outgroup from your point of view. Not that this absolves him of his academic mistakes.
    Last edited by Reverend Jones; 02-14-2018 at 06:22 AM.

  26. #7306
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend Jones View Post
    It's not even uncommon for top experts in any field to have outright loony ideas about unrelated topics.

    William Shockley would have loved to tell us all about his theories about the intelligence of black people, but it turns out that solid state physics doesn't make for much of a foundation for understanding psychology or biology.
    Absolutely. Anatoly Fomenko was a briliant topologist, but later on, well I'll quote:

    He has created his own revision called New Chronology, based on statistical correlations, dating of zodiacs, and by examining the mathematics and astronomy involved in chronology. Fomenko claims that he has discovered that many historical events do not correspond mathematically with the dates they are supposed to have occurred on. He asserts from this that all of ancient history (including the history of Greece, Rome, and Egypt) is just a reflection of events that occurred in the Middle Ages and that all of Chinese and Arab history are fabrications of 17th and 18th century Jesuits.

  27. #7307
    Lol

    Jesuits at it again...

  28. #7308
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    I think it's a bit absurd to imply a large part of analytic philosophy has a worse understanding of Derrida than Jordan Peterson. I could be wrong, but I haven't heard any criticisms from him that imply he's read any Derrida or Derrida interpretation carefully, just things he's picked up 2nd hand from books like Hicks'.
    As I said, my evidence is only anecdotal, so I'm not making any claims that what has been true in my experience is reflective of analytic philosophers in general. But, as I said, yes: in my experience, there are professional analytic philosophers who have very strong opinions about Derrida despite having never read him. Many will even admit that they've never read Derrida, despite their strong opinions. I think it has to do with the fact that many of the assumptions through which Derrida approaches philosophical questions are fundamentally antithetical to the foundational assumptions of analytic philosophy. This is common in a lot of disciplines in the humanities: people have to ignore methodologies that are alternatives to their own, if those methodologies undermine their own work. (Take, for example, the way in which Leo Strauss is also described as a charlatan because of the methodology he describes. If an analytic philosopher were to admit that there was anything credible to how Strauss reads texts, it would undermine a lot of the things they take for granted. It's easier for them to just dismiss him as a phony or whatever else.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    So I don't have a choice but to defer to experts to some degree. And if the choice is between Peterson's view, or what seems to be a consensus among practicing philosophers, I'm going to defer to the philosophers.
    You think a representative number of professional, tenure-track or tenured philosophers are wasting their time on reddit and posting under the name sh!tgenstein?
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-14-2018 at 06:31 AM.

  29. #7309
    Jordan Peterson kicked my dog

  30. #7310
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    As I said, my evidence is only anecdotal, so I'm not making any claims that what has been true in my experience is reflective of analytic philosophers in general. But, as I said, yes: in my experience, there are professional analytic philosophers who have very strong opinions about Derrida despite having never read him.
    Oh, I don't disagree that they exist. But I also think they source their critiques from better places than Peterson does. They're probably reading 2nd hand accounts of critical people who have actually read him, from academically esteemed articles.

    Remember, Jordan's primary account of postmodernism comes from an Objectivist-leaning person whose book was scorned as basically not being worth responding to in the academic literature. That's hardly a fair place to source criticism.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    Many will even admit that they've never read Derrida, despite their strong opinions. I think it has to do with the fact that many of the assumptions through which Derrida approaches philosophical questions are fundamentally antithetical to the foundational assumptions of analytic philosophy. This is common in a lot of disciplines in the humanities: people have to ignore methodologies that are alternatives to their own, if those methodologies undermine their own work. (Take, for example, the way in which Leo Strauss is also described as a charlatan because of the methodology he describes. If an analytic philosopher were to admit that there was anything credible to how Strauss reads texts, it would undermine a lot of the things they take for granted. It's easier for them to just dismiss him as a phony or whatever else.)
    I agree. From what little I know of Derrida, I don't think he's useful and that I would get much out of him. I also understand the vague outline of the academic critiques of Derrida, and enjoy them.

    In fact, I've had discussions with professional philosophers about this. When I was at UCR, which has a group of fantastic Nietzsche scholars, I spent time discussing Derrida's interpretation of Nietzsche with people like Maudemarie Clark, who is a very good Nietzsche scholar and analytic-leaning philosopher. And I absorbed her critique of Derrida, and agree with it.

    None of this, I feel, gives credence to Jordan Peterson's views. Especially not when he elevates it to a conspiracy theory infecting every department. As an example case, you have this guy who made a long reply to Jordan Peterson, a person who received a degree in English from W&M, who argues his department had almost no respect or time for Derrida, and the people who did were a minority. And by and large, I find people who are actually inside these supposedly corrupted departments don't share or agree with Jordan Peterson's perspective. There's at least enough disagreement from serious people that I feel safe in judging his take as seriously lacking, and can disregard it. Because, honestly, in life we're never absolutely 100% qualified in dismissing any thinker we haven't studied rigorously, so we have to have a heuristic to determine who to spend time on, and my heuristic for deciphering whether a person's critiques are sound tells me Jordan Peterson isn't worth my time.

    For instance, take this grad student's reading of criticisms Jordan Peterson makes of postmodernism. I mean, the starting thing Jordan Peterson says is hilarious. He starts about by accusing all postmodernists of having mental issues. That's the start of his critique. How can you possibly take this seriously?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    You think a representative number of professional, tenure-track or tenured philosophers are wasting their time on reddit and posting under the name sh!tgenstein?
    No, I never called him a professional philosopher, the time I used that phrase was quoting an entirely different person.

    But yes, there are actual academics on Reddit who post serious opinions on certain subreddits. This shouldn't be surprising. That's why I'm quoting people who claim to be serious people from /r/askphilosophy, not /r/philosophy or where have you. Maybe you think they're all actually just a bunch of lying reddit trolls. Maybe, but I think that's quite a stretch.
    Last edited by Reid; 02-14-2018 at 06:49 AM.

  31. #7311
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    For instance, take this grad student's reading of criticisms Jordan Peterson makes of postmodernism. I mean, the starting thing Jordan Peterson says is hilarious. He starts about by accusing all postmodernists of having mental issues. That's the start of his critique. How can you possibly take this seriously?
    I want to read this, but where is it on that webpage? A lot of text there and I don't want to spend too much time looking for it.

  32. #7312
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    my heuristic for deciphering whether a person's critiques are sound tells me Jordan Peterson isn't worth my time.
    You have to be at least somewhat aware that.. you seem to spend a lot of time thinking and brooding on this guy. heh. Why not just read his book? I'm *very* aware of my own hypocrisy in saying this, but don't you think that, at the very least, it'd be a better use of time than complaining about it on the internet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    But yes, there are actual academics on Reddit who post serious opinions on certain subreddits. This shouldn't be surprising. That's why I'm quoting people who claim to be serious people from /r/askphilosophy, not /r/philosophy or where have you. Maybe you think they're all actually just a bunch of lying reddit trolls. Maybe, but I think that's quite a stretch.

    In general I think there's a certain kind of person that's drawn to reddit. Some of those people are intelligent, some of them are very sincere about whatever they're interested in. I don't know what the lowest common denominator personality traits are. But, the short of it, is just that I don't think that opinions generally found on reddit are representative of the opinions that are out there. I haven't come across to many people in real life who go on reddit, though. Most of them are the nerdy sort that quote doge memes (which isn't to say I dislike them).

  33. #7313
    ^^vv<><>BASTART
    Posts
    7,526
    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    I want to read this, but where is it on that webpage? A lot of text there and I don't want to spend too much time looking for it.
    https://www.reddit.com/r/askphilosop...nions/dk9agi6/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/askphilosop...nions/dk9ah73/

    These two comments are the entire reply.

  34. #7314
    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    I like the guys from The Partially Examined Life. I've listened to their podcasts a lot.
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-14-2018 at 07:54 AM.

  35. #7315
    Derry-daaah
    Last edited by Eversor; 02-14-2018 at 07:33 AM.

  36. #7316
    Jordan Peterson licked my doge

  37. #7317
    ^^vv<><>BASTART
    Posts
    7,526
    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    You have to be at least somewhat aware that.. you seem to spend a lot of time thinking and brooding on this guy. heh. Why not just read his book? I'm *very* aware of my own hypocrisy in saying this, but don't you think that, at the very least, it'd be a better use of time than complaining about it on the internet?
    Well, for one, our discussion here is forcing me to sit through and come up with good arguments for my beliefs on Jordan Peterson, which is ipso facto requiring me to spend more time thinking about him. On a typical day I don't think I'd listen much, he's only been a topic for me personally since I listened to some of his lectures last week while cleaning my apartment and had some thoughts.

    If we continue the discussion past a certain point, I think I'd have to read his book, yeah.

    Quote Originally Posted by Eversor View Post
    In general I think there's a certain kind of person that's drawn to reddit. Some of those people are intelligent, some of them are very sincere about whatever they're interested in. I don't know what the lowest common denominator personality traits are. But, the short of it, is just that I don't think that opinions generally found on reddit are representative of the opinions that are out there. I haven't come across to many people in real life who go on reddit, though. Most of them are the nerdy sort that quote doge memes (which isn't to say I dislike them).
    I agree it's not provably representative, I just think it's useful in that we can actually connect to some degree with some people who are professionals in their area. Being an academic philosopher and Reddit user
    could correlate strongly with a certain sort of quirky philosophical understanding, I have a hard time imagining exactly what that would be here though.

  38. #7318
    It was only a matter of time before Massassi degenerated into a department of petty academics.

  39. #7319
    You guys hear that there's sperm on Obama's forehead?

    http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer...-portrait.html
    Last edited by Reverend Jones; 02-14-2018 at 07:20 AM.

  40. #7320
    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend Jones View Post
    It was only a matter of time before Massassi degenerated into a department of petty academics.
    The word "pedant" gets thrown around enough around here I think we've already crossed that line.

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