Identity politics and the Marxist lie of white privilege

hello everybody my name is Angelo and I am your emcee for the evening and on behalf of the UBC free speech club we would like to welcome you and thank you for attending our third dr. Jordan B Peterson event now I know you’re all very excited to hear the man so I’m gonna keep these opening remarks very short the UBC free speech Club is devoted to the sanctity of Liberty in our society and the necessity to keep Liberty safe from those who want to destroy it within just the year our club has grown to over a thousand members and is now in the process of incorporation so that we may continue to bring speakers and host events such as this one none of that would be possible without dr. Peterson who has inspired countless students all over North America to start speaking up on their campus and in fact this club sprung up around the same time when dr. Peterson publicly came out against the bill c16 that was just over a year ago and since then his philosophy of cleaning your room and sorting yourself out has bettered and influenced the lives of countless people he’s an accomplished psychologist professor and author his book maps of meaning is an analytical window into the myths and cultures of humankind and now he has written a new book it’s called twelve rules for life and antidote to chaos and is available for pre-order on Amazon with the release date of January 23 2018 and on that note on behalf of the UBC free speech club we would like to introduce you all to dr. Jordan B Peterson [Applause] well thank you very much for that that’s that’s quite something all right there’s a house Mike great I don’t need this one okay well then let’s just move it out of the way great so I’m gonna talk to you tonight about the ideological nexus of post-modernism and Marxism and I want to get into it fairly deeply so I can have a thoughtful thoughtful talk and then discussion afterwards so it’s a confusing topic because it’s not obvious by any stretch of the imagination why post-modernism and and neo Marxism or Marxism proper would be aligned because post-modernism is an anti grand narrative philosophical movement and Marxism is a grand narrative and so the fact that those two things seem to coexist in the same space needs definitely need some explanation and it’s a very tricky thing to get to the bottom of so we won’t get to the bottom of it but we’ll get farther to the bottom of it then I’ve got before and hopefully farther than many of you have got before so let’s see what we can figure out here so I’m going to start with some some definitions hmm I’ll return to them as we continue you know with philosophical movements then they’re often not named by the major thinkers in the movement they’re sort of named afterwards the name covers a very large range of ideas and actions and perceptions like it’s not that easy people talk about existentialism for example it’s not that easy to come up with a one paragraph summary of what constitutes existentialism my sense for the existentialist is that it’s a it’s it’s fundamentally a movement that’s predicated on the idea at least in in this psychological sense that you know Freud tended to attribute human suffering and mental disorder to good trauma it’s more complex than that but that’ll do for a for a quick overview but the existentialists thought that there is enough suffering intrinsic in life so that it wasn’t insanity that was the question it was sanity it was how was possible for people to be sane and and and and let’s say normal for lack of a better word given that there was brutality and malevolence intrinsic in life and the fact that you had to rise up as an individual and and stand in relation to that relationship to that is part and parcel of what constitutes existentialism and there’s all sorts of different people who were thinkers who are existentialist some of them atheistic some of them deeply religious like Dostoyevsky but so it’s not I’m using that as an example to show you how difficult it is to bring a set of thinkers under one umbrella you’re bound to oversimplify but we’ll go ahead and oversimplify post-modernism you can think about it as an attitude of skepticism irony towards and rejection of grand narratives ideologies and universalism including the idea of the objective notions of reason that’s a big one human nature that’s a big one social progress absolute truth and object of reality all those things being questioned I kind of think of the head Joker at the top of the postmodern hierarchy as Derrida Foucault is often mentioned as are a number of other people here’s some other attributes of postmodern thinking there’s a recognition of the existence of hierarchy that’s for sure and there’s an echo of that idea the recognition of hierarchy and the term patriarchy because of course patriarchy is a recognition of hierarchy now it’s a very particular kind of recognition but the post modernists also tend to define hierarchy as a consequence of power differential and so the world they envision as far as I can tell it’s something like a it’s a sociological II Hobbesian nightmare so Hobbes thought of the philosopher Thomas Hobbes thought of the natural state of human beings as every individual in some sense at the throat of every other individual so that the basic state of man mankind unlike the Rousseau e’en state of say virgin innocence and and and the primitive garden of paradise was an all-out war of everyone against everyone else and that that required the imposition of the social order to keep peace essentially so it’s a it’s a fairly dark view of of humankind Rousseau on the other hand would think of people as intrinsically good and the social order as intrinsically tyrannical you can actually think about Hobbes and Rousseau in some sense of as as as opposites that need to be paired together in order to get a relatively comprehensive view of human nature well the postmodern view is like the Hobbesian view in some sense except you want to replace the individual with with with pyramids of of social organization so hierarchies of social organization that are based on group identity and that the landscape in which those pyramids exist is one of unbroken enmity and inability to communicate so it’s a very dark view as far as I’m concerned and I think it’s fundamentally wrong and in many ways I mean it’s right in that there are groups of people and there is some difficulty in communication between them and that power is an element in the formation of hierarchies but you can’t reduce hierarchy or group relationship to those premises it’s too simplified because people also cooperate we’re also not groups many many of us belong to many groups so it’s to the actual situation is far too complex to reduce it to that degree to reduce it to that degree even though you can come up with a good explanatory story if you do so it doesn’t capture the nuances and they’re not just nuances it doesn’t capture the essence now the thing is is that when you make the presupposition that the reason that hierarchies exist is because of power then essentially what you do is turn every hierarchy into a tyranny and so if you if there is hierarchy then you assume it’s a tyranny well that’s really the patriarchy the patriarchy is hierarchy assumed as tyranny and that’s also just not true except in pathological hierarchies so for example we know from the psychological literature that the best predictors of long-term life success our intelligence and conscientiousness in in Western countries at least and well that’s what you’d hope for right you more or less if you want it even to set up a society even if you weren’t particularly smart or hard-working you might want to set up a society where intelligence and hard work we’re good predictors of success because then the people who were smart and hardworking would produce a bunch of things that you could have if you could trade for them and of course that is actually the situation that most of us are in so and of course the other thing about people who believe that hierarchies in the West are only composed of of power and tyranny is that their own actions belie that because whenever they make a decision to interact with that hierarchy they attempt or to make a purchase or to make a trade let’s say or to obtain a server a service of any importance let’s say a medical service they are going to definitely act as if there are less and more competent people within that hierarchy and seek out the ones that are more competent obviously which you don’t do if if the hierarchy is only composed of tyranny and power there’s no point looking for competence but anyways in the West and in functioning societies the hierarchies are basically predicated on competence and not power and and you might say well that’s pretty naive it’s like no actually it’s not very naive I’m not saying at all that in appropriate power plays don’t play a role in corrupting hierarchies of competence that happens but generally what happens is if the hierarchies of competence get corrupted enough by power then they crumble because they can no longer function so then though you know the evidence that our hierarchies of competence work is everywhere because everything around this works all the time ayaan Hirsi Ali tells that to two interesting stories in her book infidel which is a great book by the way she came from Africa and and from a country that wasn’t very functional and when she came to Holland said there were two things that really amazed her and this really struck me because you know now and then you get lucky and you can see the the world you live in from an outsider’s perspective right you get to see through someone else’s eyes she said the first thing that knocked her off her feet was waiting for a bus in in Amsterdam and on the you know she’s standing at the bus stop and there’s a pole there and there’s digital sign on the pole the digital sign says when the next bus is going to come and countdown and then when it hits zero the bus appears and she just she just she absolutely could not believe that that would happen that there could be a sign that told you when the bus would come and that it would change and the bus would actually appear and you think well yeah no that’s a miracle man that’s an absolute miracle it is it is you’ve got to think that through you know the amount of timing and organization and and reliability mechanical reliability and sociological or social organization and dedication on the part of the bus drivers in the entire company and the organization of the whole city in the state to make that possible is absolutely beyond belief especially when it’s time to well perhaps not the second but to ten seconds or something like that that is absolutely beyond belief and her inability to comprehend that was the correct response and then the other thing she was amazed by was that you could go talk to policemen and they would help you that was just that was just a no-go for her because for her ik her experience was policemen were there to shake you down and and hurt you and so you think well you know well I won’t I won’t dwell on that point any longer the point is is that it’s absolutely ridiculous blind to make the assumption that the hierarchies in functioning Western democracies are fundamentally predicated on power and tyranny and then you know I can use a biological example to which would place me outside of the postmodern realm of argument because the postmodernist don’t believe in biology but but they act like they do because they all die so so this primatologist named well I’ll tell you two stories okay cuz these are these are really useful so the ones about rats and I got this story from yok panksepp who was a great neuroscientist he wrote a book called effective neuroscience which by the way is on my reading list that’s on my website it’s a really good book affective neuroscience he’s a great scientist he was one of the people who he learned that he learned that rats laugh they laugh out ultrasonic li-like bats so if you’re gonna you tickle them with a pencil eraser they laugh but you have to record it and then slow it down and then you can hear them and you might think well rats laugh like what would be a big grant for that what kind of idiocy is that it’s like no no no just don’t don’t don’t get ahead of yourself here you know he was showing that that that capacity for social interaction for social interaction that was mediated by physiological touch mm-hm activated the same excuse me activated the same circuits in rats but a dozen people and that those are actual biological circuits and we share them even with rats now rats are quite similar to human beings as it turns out I could say especially post modernists but I won’t and and and so the fact that that you know that little rats giggle when you tickle them is is actually extraordinarily important he also identified hmm surprising I’ve been talking too much lately he also identified the primary play circuit in mammals and that’s a big deal too from a scientific perspective that’s like discovering a new continent like discovering a whole brain system that people really didn’t know existed that’s a big deal so here’s a little story about rats so young rats like to engage in rough-and-tumble play especially juvenile males it’s also the case for puppies if you’ve ever had a puppy dogs are like that they like to wrestle and it’s one of the things that male human beings tend to do with their offspring and it’s a really really good thing like rough-and-tumble play with children really help socialize them because helps them figure out the difference between touch and even rough touch and pain you know because one of the things you’re doing when you’re rough and tumble playing with the little kid is you know you throw them up in the air and you wrestle around I built my I had two couches when my kids were little that were sort of face to face so we built this little wrestling ring and I used to go in there and pound them half to death every night you know so they loved that I mean they get so excited about that they love that so much it’s just crazy but the reason for that is like you’re stretching out their bodies and you’re showing them that they can’t put their thumb and your eye and you’re teaching them to be graceful and and and you’re teaching them the difference between something new that’s happening to the body and something painful you’re really teaching them to dance and it’s this really complicated physiological dance that that is indicative of a socialized being and that’s partly why women like men who can dance by the way because it’s CIO’s that you can pay attention to someone else first of all that you’re coordinated but even more importantly that you can take the fact of your coordination and coordinate that with someone else’s coordination so and that’s very primal and physiological it’s built right into your body and rough and tumble play helps without a lot anyways rats also like to rough and tumble play for much the same reasons and sort of sort of pretty much all social mammals so you can tell that rats like it see how do you know if a rat like something well he’ll work for it and one of the ways you can figure out if a rat wants to work for something is that no you get him in a state where maybe he’s desperate for whatever he’s working for and you can put a little spring on him and figure out how hard he pols to go somewhere he knows where he’s going to get that and then you can measure the force that he’s willing to apply and that gives you a rough estimate of his motivation or maybe you have to borrow press like a you know like a coke cocaine addicted rat to to receive the reward and you can count rate of bar pressing and you can get an estimate of how excited the rat is to go do whatever it is the rats going to do and so panksepp used to put rats he’d pair them one rat against the other in kind of a play arena not a very big thing and and these were juvenile males and they would work to do that okay so they liked it and and maybe one rat was 10% bigger than the other and then when you paired them the big rat would beat the little route because 10% weight advantage was enough to make the bigger dominant okay so then they established basically dominance and Submission you might think about that as a power relationship and to some degree it is but it’s more complicated than that and this is very important so so the rats play together once and the big rat pins the little rat really very much like wrestling there’s rats wrestle just like people wrestle and if you pair them together then the big rat can pin the little rat okay so now you got dominant rats subordinate rat roughly speaking and but then you see if you stop the experiment there you’d think while the rats play to establish dominance and Submission but the thing is is that rats don’t just play once they play many many many times and that’s also the case with human beings is that you don’t just play once you play many many times and there’s a difference between the rules of a game and the rules of a set of games and that’s so unbelievably important so you keep that mind because we’ll return to that so anyways the next time the two rats get together the little rat has to ask the big rat to play because rule basically is subordinate entity asks dormant identity to play and so the little rat does what mammals do to play you know they kind of put their paws down and put the rear end up bit up in the air you see dogs do that and unless you’re completely clueless you know that that doesn’t mean he’s going for your throat means he wants you to whack him on the side of the head so he can sort of pretend to bite you you know it’s it’s pretty obvious if you’ve played with dogs and children so and I make that comparison because dogs and children understand each other right they’re pack animals they follow the same basic rules they know how to play they can become friends otherwise you wouldn’t have them as pets I mean the dogs not the children so anyways the little rat asks the big rut to play and big rat things yeah yeah okay they will play they wrestle and you pair them multiple times well if you pair them multiple times what you find is that less the big rat let’s the little rat win 30% of the time the little rat don’t ask the big rat to play anymore and that do you think well who cares what like why is that important it’s like it’s really important that’s a really important discovery because it shows you that that even rats have a set set a sense of fair play that emerges across iterated games it’s it’s it’s an ever it’s evidence for the biological instantiation of a social morality it’s a big deal man that’s a big discovery and and it shows you that even at the level of rats they’re very social animals by the way the interactions between rats are mediated by something like a sense of fairness or justice and so that’s extremely cool because you know we tend to think of animals as having dominance hierarchies and that’s predicated on power and that idea even though the bloody postmodernist don’t believe in biology they extend that analogy up to human beings it’s just not true ok well the same turns out to be true of chimpanzees so friends do all who’s a Dutch primatologist a very smart one too he’s been interested in the biological basis of morality as well and he’s written a lot of good books on on primate behavior chimps in particular temps are brutal creatures man like they go to war a and so in if you have a chimp territory out in the jungle then the juveniles will the males in particular they’ll band together in groups of four or five there’s often but not always a female or two with them and if they come across chimps from another troop that aren’t within their hierarchy let’s say they will if they’re if they outnumber them because they can’t really count but they can estimate magnitude visually it’s not the same as counting but if they outnumber them they will tear them to pieces and chimps are at least twice as strong is a really well developed human male and so they can tear you up pretty good and chimps are perfectly capable they hunt they’re carnivorous like human beings and they hunt they hunt colobus monkeys often they weigh about 40 pounds and they’ll basically eat them alive but monkeys screaming away like mad because you know it’s in pain because it’s being eaten and that doesn’t slow the chimps down a bit there’s no cross species empathy stopping them from having their knack and so chimps are very brutal creatures and it isn’t obvious they have a lot of internal inhibition of their aggression at all most of the inhibition as sociological it’s out in the hierarchy and so the reason chimps aren’t always aggressive with one another is because they know who can pound them and and who will gang up on them and who won’t they establish their hierarchy anyways you know you think about a chimp hierarchy and you’re talking about a fairly strong and aggressive creature you might think it’s biggest ugliest meanest most vicious irritable unpleasant chimp that rises to the top well that’s kind of the postmodernist view of human society but that’s not the case it happens sometimes but what happens and DeWall has documented this quite nicely is that tyrant chimps lead unstable regimes now you know you that might sound familiar because the same thing of course is true human beings and why is that well it’s because you know people don’t like tyrants chimps don’t like them that much either and chimps are actually quite reciprocal in their social interactions so they don’t just dominate each other they groom each other they have friendships they can track social relationships over very long periods of time no and and they do that and so they engage in in reciprocal interactions let’s say pro-social in reciprocal interactions and you might think well what’s the what’s the weak point of the biggest ugliest toughest chimp in the troop and that is he doesn’t have any friends and so you know maybe he has a bad day he’s a little hungover or whatever from eating fermented bananas or whatever he is partying with and two of the slightly less ugly’s less slightly less mean chimps decide well this is a good time to take them out and they tear them to pieces and so one of the things do all is pointed out quite nicely is that if you want to have a stable chimp dominance hierarchy let’s call it a regime the stable ones aren’t ruled by the tyrants because the tyrants get taken out by by paired up friendship dyad something like that so that’s really worth thinking about too you know because because it indicates that even in creatures that have less complex sociological orders and they do because one of the things that predicts how complex your social order is is how big your brain is compared to your body it’s a encephalization essentially and the more encephalitis the creature the larger the social groups it can track and of course human beings are very highly in cephalo so we have quite complicated group we have quite complicated group organizations but even in simpler group organizations like the chimps it isn’t the tyrant who rules stabili and that turns out to be also incredibly important okay so mmm-hmm so you know so much for the idea that power is the only game in town then you got to ask the question is well this is actually a postmodern question so you know get one of the things Derrida said the main postmodern Joker is that by categorizing you you you privilege one concept and you prat you foresaw the concepts out to the margins and so he believed that when you constructed a hierarchy of power that the hierarchy of power privileged certain people and marginalized others and you know that’s really not that brilliant at observation as far as I’m concerned it’s rather commonplace all it means is that when you categorize something that there are things that are in the category and a bunch of things that aren’t and so you actually can’t categorize anything which means you can’t perceive anything which means you can’t think or live without making some things in the middle and everything else on the outside it’s it’s part of categorization itself and so maybe the post modernists would go far enough to question the utility of categorization itself and I think to some degree they do that do that but the point here is is that if you you have to ask why it is that you would if you were a postmodernist yourself why it is that you would privilege the idea of power above all else it’s exactly what is it that you’re pushing to the margin and so that’s something that we’re going to talk about now here’s one thing you might push to the margin let’s say that you believe that hierarchies are a consequence of power well then you push competence to the margin and then applying the post margin mark modernist logic you might say well the reason your privileges so that you can produce so that you could push competence to the margin and so you want to keep that in mind too because that’s going to become important as we discussed the relationship between post-modernism and Marxism maybe you’re after the destruction of the idea of competence itself all right so role game postmoderns and we talked about it a little bit we’ll return to it now we’re going to talk a little bit about Marxism I’ve got a quote here from Marx the proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains well that was pretty good for like 1880 or 1890 or whenever it was he wrote it somewhere around that period of time turned out the proletarians had a lot more to lose than their chains they had their lives and their families to lose and that was demonstrated amply as a consequence of the what would you call it the sociological movements that were put into place when the marxist presuppositions began to govern societies like the soviet union so all right so let’s take the same post modernist approach so here’s some basic tenets of Marxism its Berge Razia against proletariat the bird was the a or the capitalist the property owners those sorts of people the proletariat working-class for all intents and purposes the basic idea is that history itself is nothing but the what would you call it the documentation of the struggle of one class against the other okay no like that’s wrong but it’s okay because it’s too simple obviously it’s obviously too simple there’s all sorts of motivations that people have some of them are economic some of them are associated with power but that’s okay we’ll leave that let’s give the devil his due and say well yeah fair enough there’s still a fair bit of tension between the haves and the have-nots have nots and maybe that was even more intense in previous societies than it is now and it’s no there’s no doubt that economics plays a role in in virtually everything that human beings do in a fairly significant role so let’s let’s accept that as a potential theory it’s it’s simple but maybe it’s practically useful and then there’s kind of an offshoot of that theory which is that well if you’re a Marxist that means you have sympathy for the working class right because that’s what you’re saying all the time it’s like well the poor working class they’re all oppressed the poor poor proletariat you know and and then you’re also saying well we’re the good guys because we’re standing on the side of the oppressed and so then you might also ask what you’re marginalizing when you claim that you’re the good guys because one of the things that you would be marginalizing is all of the ways in which you’re not the good guys but we can leave that aside for a moment too so but there’s the claims is that you know there’s the working class against the ruling class another claim is the ruling class is the ruling class because they exploit the working class basically stealing their excess labor from them another very very what surface lis attractive claim that lacks any reasonable justification you know because it’s predicated on the idea of the world as a zero-sum game and clearly the world is not a zero-sum game so when someone creates wealth when someone is wealthy it can be at least at times because they created it not because they swiped it from someone else I think you know you can think of someone like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs is a good example of that you know they’re there what they produced had a value that far exceeded what they garnered as a consequence of their production even though what they garnered was very substantial so anyways but we’ll get like I said we’re gonna give the devil his due okay it’s the Burj huazi against the proletariat we’ll accept that it’s class warfare is the primary historical mover no problem now but here’s one I’m not willing to give away so easily we have sympathy for the working class primarily and we’re good because of that no I’m not going to just like give that away so simply so let’s investigate that a little bit let’s see if we can actually figure out if that’s true we’ll say use a pragmatic approach because I’m a pragmatist in that William James Sansa or maybe you could think about it even more deeply and anciently there’s a statement in the New Testament I think it’s by their fruits you shall know them fine so we’re gonna walk down that road before we do that so now that’s another thing you have to keep in mind before we do that I want to make one more detour okay so I like making detours and then tangling them all back together so I want to give you a bit of a history of theories of suffering and I’m going to compare the Marxist theory of suffering to the judeo-christian theory of suffering and the judeo-christian would be and the reason I’m doing that is because I think the judeo-christian theory of suffering is actually one of the foundation stones of our entire culture and so it actually matters why you think they’re suffering and so the story that describes the entry of suffering into the world the mythological story is the story in Genesis the story of Adam and Eve and basically what happens in the story of Adam and Eve is Adam and Eve are unconscious to begin with and they’re sort of in this paradisal state there’s no death or at least there’s no knowledge of death there’s also no knowledge of self and then Eve eats the Apple that the serpent gives her and the scales fall from her eyes and she gives the Apple to Adam and heats it as well so she makes him self conscious they both wake up the first thing that happens is they realize that they’re naked and they cover themselves up and the second thing that happens as a consequence of that realization is that they come to know the difference between good and evil and I mean that’s a insanely complicated story that’s dealing with a absolutely incomprehensible number of complex phenomena simultaneously but it basically goes something like this is that to be aware that you’re naked is to be aware of your fragility and your mortality when when you have a nightmare about being naked in front of a crowd it means that you’re exposed to the crowd all your flaws all your mortal vulnerability is exposed to the crowd for for them to see for you to be ashamed of for them to judge that’s partly why we’re all clothed that’s partly why human being how human why clothing is a human Universal there’s many human universals by the way clothing is one of them although it’s used for many different purposes so Adam Nev cover themselves up and so it’s because they’ve realized that they’re that they’re vulnerable they’re naked and vulnerable that’s self-consciousness human beings are self conscious animals we’re really the only self conscious animals other animals have the glimmerings of self-consciousness some of them can identify themselves in a mirror for example but we have whole theories of ourselves we have whole articulated verbal and philosophical theories of what a human being is and what we each are as individuals so really those aren’t in the same conceptual universe it’s a whole different it’s a qualitatively different issue in the case of human beings we’re self conscious self consciousness loads on trait neuroticism technically speaking which means that self-consciousness is primarily something that manifests itself in the form of negative emotion and we all know that you’re on stage you get self-conscious is that a good thing no you can get so self-conscious that you’re tongue-tied right it’s not good you don’t want to be self-conscious on stage or maybe ever you get self-conscious in the in the face of someone you’re trying to impress you turn all red you stammer it’s like self-consciousness is a rough business it’s no wonder because you know yourself for the for the fragile fool that you are it’s even worse than that because see it took me a long time to figure out why it was that when Adam and Eve woke up they also developed the knowledge of good and evil I just couldn’t figure that out because didn’t make sense to me well how self consciousness knowledge of vulnerability and the knowledge of good and evil were tangled together or even really what the knowledge of good and evil meant but I figured it out eventually I thought Oh get it I get it it was like a real revelation to me as soon as you know you’re vulnerable you know the difference between good and evil because as soon as you know you’re vulnerable then you know everyone else is and as soon as you know that everyone else is vulnerable you know how to hurt them and so that means you can consciously know how to bring suffering into being and that’s the knowledge of good and evil and you know that because let’s say that you’re really good at torturing people and there’s no doubt the number of people in the audience who are actually quite good at that and maybe you all have a bit of an affinity for it if you’re married I’m sure your partner would testify to that so if you’re going to hurt someone what you think essentially is okay what would really hurt me and then you think well I’ll just do that to them it’s like that’s that’s that’s a that’s a good theory it’s very sophisticated so anyways so okay so what happens Adam and Eve wake up they weren’t supposed to do this God told them that they were gonna be sorry if they did that but they did it anyways because that’s what people are like and because we always learn things that that knock us out of our present paradises right we’re curious and we won’t leave things alone and maybe things are not so bad and then you you know ask some questions that maybe you’re not so happy about asking once you find the answer and you fall out of your little paradise into history and you got to work to set things right again and anyways God gets wind of this and and he chases Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden but he says some interesting things when he chases them out he says all right now you know what’s the consequence of that and he says to Adam you’re gonna have to work now that’s cool that’s really cool well he is God after all you know also he he knows what he’s talking about he says you’re gonna have to work so why would you have to work now that you knew you were vulnerable well the answer that is well if you know you’re vulnerable that stretches out into the future you know you’re going to die you know that you’re fragile it’s like maybe all your problems are solved right now you’re all sitting here you’re safe you’re not hungry you don’t want anything to drink etc but what about tomorrow what about next week or next month or ten years from now it’s like just because you got all your problems solved for this second doesn’t mean you’ve got them solved for the rest of your iterations through time so you got to work and the work is the sacrifice of the present for the future and so that’s exactly right you have to work now you think see what’s interesting about that this is the theory that I was going in it of course God tells that Eve well you’ve really you know screwed things up – you’re gonna have these big brain babies and and that’s a big problem you’re gonna suffer in childbirth and then they’re gonna be dependent on you forever and because of that you’re gonna be dependent on this man that you just woke up and that’s not gonna be very pleasant for either of you but tough luck and so that’s it that’s the curse in some sense and it’s exactly right but the thing is there’s a theory in there there’s an interesting theory of suffering that’s implicit in that story and the theory of suffering is that suffering is built into this structure of self-conscious being it’s built right into the structure so if you’re a self conscious being that’s your lot it isn’t someone else’s fault it isn’t a consequence of sociological oppression it isn’t the consequence of the fact that our society isn’t organized properly it’s just part of being alright so that’s a big deal because that’s a that’s an important theory because one of the questions is well well you know why is there suffering or what are you gonna do about it and it’s a big it’s a lot different if it’s just the way it is for you and if it’s actually your fault that he’s suffering those are or maybe it’s the group’s fault that you’re suffering those are major those theories are really really different than in the second story and Cain and Abel Cain makes sacrifices to try to get it in good with God and Abel make sacrifices and the sacrifices are kind of archaic from our perspective they’re burnt offerings so the smoke goes up where God can detect it because he’s up there somewhere up there where the stars are and God rejects Cain sacrifices and we don’t really know why but it kind of looks like Cain is a second grader and then God came goes and complains to God and says like what kind of stupid universe did you make here I’m breaking myself in half trying to get things together making the proper sacrifices and nothing’s going well for me and Abel well you know he’s everything he touches turns to gold everyone loves him he’s even a really good guy it’s like so annoying what’s up with this place you built and God tells Cain don’t be coming and telling me that the entire fabric reality is wrong because it isn’t working out for you says sin crouches at your door like a like a sexually aroused predatory cat that’s basically the metaphor that that God uses and he says and you let it in and had it and let it have its way with you and that’s really an interesting way of putting it because what God says to Cain is that you know you’re all bitter and resentful and really it’s no wonder because you know things aren’t going well for you and then you’ve got Abel who’s over shining you in every way and but yeah it’s your fault this terrible thing waited at the door and you let it in and then you entered into a creative union with it and you produced something as a consequence and that’s this tormented spirit that you have now and it’s polluting your relationship with reality and that’s why things aren’t working so out very well for you so go put yourself together before you come and tell me just exactly what’s wrong with the structure of reality and Cain isn’t very happy about that because really is that really what you want to hear that’s right like you have more misery than is necessary because you really didn’t put your act together and you know it and you’ve done it creatively and so Cain goes and kills Abel that’s the story of how resentment enters the world and it’s the first story in the judeo-christian canon let’s say about actual human beings because Adam and Eve were made by God so they don’t really count Cain and Abel were born so that’s something so that’s a reaction to suffering right the necessity of sacrifice and the consequence of the necessity of sacrifice is that some sacrifices work and others don’t and then if your sacrifices aren’t met with the with the good will of God let’s say well then that makes you angry well of course it does you can take God out of the story if you want if you’re not happy with that kind of mythological or narrative statement but it doesn’t really matter because the whole point is is that if you make sacrifices especially if there’s second-rate things aren’t gonna go very well for you and you’re gonna get bitter and resentful and murderous and maybe genocide ‘el and it’s really interesting you know because Cain has descendants and if you bug if you transgress against them they don’t just kill you they kill seven of you and then his later descendants kill 49 of you there’s this exponential growth of murderous nests as a consequence of Cain’s primary primal fratricide and then the next story is the flood and that’s not an accident there’s nothing in those stories is an accident okay so now you’ve got two different theories about the nature of suffering you’ve got the one I just laid out it’s called the foundational story of suffering and malevolence and you have the Marxist story which is well there’s oppressed people and the reason they’re oppressed and suffering is because the oppressors are oppressing them those are not the same theories right and there’s a utopianism that’s implicit in Marxism which is if you could just get the damn oppressors to stop oppressing the oppressed then the Utopia would arrive and so not only are the oppressors responsible for the suffering of the poor they’re also responsible for the fact that the utopia isn’t here for everyone and so how reprehensible can you get well then that certainly justifies that degree of malevolence justifies pretty much anything you’d like to do to them so anyway so let’s take this apart in a little more detail don’t do the Marxists have sympathy for the working-class George Orwell was interested in this question and so he wrote this book called Wigan Road the Wigan pier which I would highly recommend it so on a reading list I made that’s on my website you can check that out those are books that have been particularly influential to me and so Orwell was a socialist he wrote the book for the left book club which published a kind of a socialist book once a month Orwell by the time he wrote this book he was already awake you know by in the 1920s after the Russian Revolution no one really knew what to make of what was happening in what would become the Soviet Union right I mean it was after World War one planet was in ashes pro intents and purposes the old aristocratic order was crumbling it was a horror show and these revolutionaries came out with these new ideas and tried to give the in principle give the working class a break and everybody watched to see what would happen and the honest people and the intellectuals watched and I separate them for a reason but by nineteen twenty twenty-one twenty-two something like that it was obvious already that something was rotten in the state of Denmark Malcolm Muggeridge went over to the Soviet Union to check out how the collectivization of the farms was going and he found out it was actually pretty murderous right because what this what the Communists did was round up all the successful farmers and raped them and kill them and steal everything they had and send them off to Siberia which turned out actually to be a pretty bad idea now you think you think about it those people were or serfs not very long before a couple of generations at most they were so not much more than slaves and some of them had risen up to the point where the me had a nice brick house and a couple of cows and maybe a person working for them or two and there was a small proportion of the agriculturalists in the soviet union that we’re producing most of the food and that’s just how it goes because that’s a pre distribution issue in any field where there’s human productivity a small proportion of the people produce almost all of the output it’s actually the square root of the number of people in the field produce half the output so if you have a hundred farmers ten of them produce half the food but if you have 10,000 a hundred of them produce half the food okay so what happens when you kill all the good farmers you starve six million Ukrainians to death in the 1930s and you know that’s not something that’s all that widely known but if you want to provide some additional fodder for your nightmares you could go online and read about what happened to the Ukrainians in the 1930s so without underneath that under the collectivization principles so let’s say you’re a mother and you were starving to death so are your children and you know the Communists had come in and forcibly collectivized you and then they took all the grain that your collective farm had producing they shipped it all to the city saying so that’s all done and you think okay you know the city’s gotta eat so then you go out in the field to pick up the grains that the harvesters missed so that you can you know the ones that they’ve been lying there they’re not so good there’s not that many of them you go out and glean you pick up the seeds that weren’t picked up so you can feed your kids so they don’t die and so what’s the punishment for that death because you were obliged under the collectivization orders to turn in any additional grains that you happen to pick off the ground to the authorities so that they could be well who knows but at least so you so they could be shipped to the cities I suppose which is of course absurd because of course that would never happen but it was mostly so that you could just actually die so okay anyways back to the road to Wigan Pier now I’m gonna read you a little bit about about from the book so Orwell went out to this mining town in the northern UK and coal miners Orwell had sympathy for the working class he really worked on that his whole life because he was a middle class upper middle class snobby type Englishman and he knew it and he tried really hard to overcome that he he he served in the Spanish Civil War he wandered around as a tramp he worked in in in low end restaurant he worked as a low end worker in restaurants in Paris and and in London he has a very good book I think it’s called down and out in Paris in London that describes that he was seriously committed dude and really a smart guy and so he’s going up to these terrible towns in the northern UK where the coal miners worked and have their families and you know they had hard lives they had hard lives and that’s just saying nothing you know that coal miners that he met they didn’t have any teeth by the time they were thirty he said the women he talked you said teeth are just a misery it’s better to get rid of them as soon as you can and and and they went and the man went in mind coal and that was rough you know they all have black lung by the time they were 40 and they were they were done fundamentally but here’s a just a bit a bit of a story about how hard their lives were so they had to go in the mines during the day so they never saw the day so that’s one thing they had to go to the mines and then they had their like not coal off the walls that’s hard with hammers and picks and all of that and they had to move it but that was that was their job but there was the commute so here was the commute so imagine that the typical tunnel was about that high something like that and the typical coal miner was about that high that’s a problem eh because you got to walk through those tunnels to get to work so you have to walk like this then the question might be well how far do you have to walk to work and the answer is three and a half miles and that’s how far you have to walk back from work after you put your eight-hour shift in at the coal mine and they don’t get paid for the commute and so huh or well said that was more or less like climbing a small mountain in the morning before you went to work and then climbing another one at night before you went home and so that was just I mean believe me I’m telling you very little about how tough their lives were but that gives you a little flavor like so one day like that for a modern person you’re just you dad pay or you wish you were dead anyways and so Orwell talks about going up there to stay and terrible places he lived in while he was up there in the terrible food he ate and and the miserable wretched scenes that he saw and here’s one of the miserable wretched scenes he’s on a train through the neighborhoods he says the Train bore me away through the monstrous scenery of slag heaps chimneys piled scrap iron fouled canals paths of Sindri mud crisscross by the prints of clogs this was March but the weather had been horribly cold and everywhere there were mounds of black and snow as we move slowly through the outskirts of the town we passed row after row of little grey slum houses running at right angles to the embankment at the back of one of the houses a young woman was kneeling on the stone poking a stick up the lead and waste pipe which ran from the sink inside in which I suppose was blocked I had time to see everything about her her sack apron her clumsy clogs her arms reddened by the cold she looked up as the train passed and I was almost near enough to catch her eye she had a round pale face the usual exhausted face of the slum girl who’s 25 and looks 40 thanks to miscarriages and drudgery and at war for the second in which I saw it the most desolate hopeless expression I have ever seen it struck me then that we meaning the middle class at that time our mistake and when we say that it isn’t the same for them as it would be for us and that people bred in the slums can imagine nothing but the slums for what I saw on her face was by no means the ignorant suffering of an animal she knew well enough what was happening to her understood as well as I did how dreadful a destiny it was to be kneeling there and the bitter cold on the slimy stones of a slum backyard poking a stick up a foul drainpipe all right so thore well rates the first part of the book and it details the lives of these people and then he makes an argument he says like how can you read about this how can you know about this without having some sympathy for redistribution schemes and social and socialist ideas and so he’s actually asking himself this question it’s not just a rhetorical question he’s I mean he’s a serious guy right he went he goes up there and he tells you a story that you have to have a heart of stone if you if you don’t if you read that you don’t think man something should be done about this it’s really awful so he’s set up this situation where your sympathies are completely with the people that he’s describing but socialism wasn’t all that popular in Britain at that time and and so and socialists weren’t all that popular with Orwell didn’t really like them that much he was trying to figure out why that was so this the second part of the book now this got him in a lot of trouble they didn’t want to publish his damn book after he wrote the second part but he fought with them in he got it published and it’s a classic and and people still read it and you should read it because it’s a great book and Orwell’s a great writer and Orwell is another one of those people that intellectuals who woke up pretty early in all Orwell wrote Animal Farm in 1984 he wrote 1984 in 1948 wrote Animal Farm approximately around the same time he knew what was happening under Stalin and he wasn’t afraid to say it but it was a message that in some sense fell on deaf ears especially among the intelligentsia and there’s complicated reasons for that but but it wasn’t like the facts weren’t there for people to see them if they wanted to and has already said Muggeridge Malcolm Muggeridge had made it pretty clear in the 1920s and that was widely publicized by the way throughout the UK what was happening during decolonization the cool acts being the farmers that I talked about earlier who who had committed the unspeakable sin of crawling out of their serfs status over a couple of generations to the point where they weren’t mere property and half starved so this is what Orwell had to say about Socialists it might be said however that even if the theoretical oriented book trained socialists is not a working man himself at least he is actuated by a love of the working class he’s endeavoring to shed his burgeois status and fight on the side of the proletariat obviously that must be his motive but is it sometimes I look at a socialist the intellectual tract writing type of socialist with his pull over his fuzzy hair and his Marxist quotation and wonder what the devil his motive really is it’s really difficult to believe that it’s a love of anybody especially of the working class from whom he is of all people the furthest removed the truth is that too many people calling them socialists revolution does not mean a movement of the masses with which they hope to associate themselves it means instead a set of reforms which we the clever ones are going to impose upon them the lower orders on the other hand it would be a mistake to regard the book train socialists as a bloodless creature entirely incapable of emotion though seldom giving much evidence of affection for the exploited is perfectly capable of displaying hatred sort of queer theoretical in vacuo hatred against the exploiters hence the grand old socialist sport of denouncing the Bruges wozy it is strange how easily almost any socialist writer can lash himself into frenzies of rage against the class to which by birth or by adoption he himself almost invariably belongs now I worked for the NDP when I was a kid and I had privileged access to the leadership for provincially and federally for reasons that I won’t go into and I thought that many of them were honorable people who were really striving to give the working-class of voice and I believe that the working-class needs a voice a political voice for obvious reasons I think the Democrats in the United States have made an absolutely dreadful abysmal mistake replacing their working-class political ethos with identity politics we’re going to talk about that and and I don’t think the situation has changed that much I think one of the things that’s happened in the United States is that world stability and peace in some ways has been purchased at the expense of North American working class well-being no because the Chinese have got rich compared to thirty years ago 40 years ago 50 years ago the in the Indians have got rich again same comparison basis there’s more middle class people in India now than there on the United States the trade arrangements that have been in North America allowed for the rise of middle classes globally at the same time they opened up the working class in North America to competition from those low-wage sources and maybe that’s a good deal it’s hard to say right because it’s not such a bad thing that the Chinese aren’t starving and it’s not such a bad thing that the Indians aren’t starving and that those societies are transforming themselves actually into communities that are quite wealthy it’s like hurray for that it’s an absolutely miraculous transformation it’s the most rapid growth of human wealth in the history of humanity so we should be pretty happy about that but we should also remember at least to some degree who’s paid the price for it and so as far as I’m concerned the working class needs a voice and it isn’t obvious that they have one at the moment having said that however it isn’t obvious to me at all that the people who purport to stand for the working class actually do so or that if they do so that the reason they do so is because they’re all compassionate and sympathetic and loving and kind and saint-like I’m more convinced by Orwell’s argument so back to the NDP the people I met at the leadership level a lot of them I had a fair bit of admiration for but as I worked with the party over about a five year period there is this contradiction that came kept emerging for me and that was that I didn’t really like the low-level party functionary activist types like they just weren’t personally appealing to me they seemed peevish and resentful and then at the same time I was going to college I was about 17 I got elected to the sit on the College Board of Governors and at that time Alberta was conservative politically right it still is of course but they it was part of the Progressive Conservative Empire because they ruled Alberta forever and all the Board of Governor members were basically nominees right they were conservative nominees so these were conservative people and I was an MVP member and I thought when I’d worked for small businessman – who weren’t NDP they were they were conservative he can never figure that out but I’ll tell you about that in a minute but I had a bad case of cognitive dissonance because they actually turned out that I admired the people on the Board of Governors and they were mostly it was in Grand Prairie it’s not a very big place and it’s not very old and so if you were reasonably successful in Grand Prairie the probability that you would inherited your money from the Rs 2 crore aristocracy was like zero because there wasn’t one write it the whole damn town was 50 years old so if you had any influencer or wealth you were a small businessmen small to middle sized businessman and you’d you knew what you were doing and I actually admired these people I thought well that’s not very good I admire them and I don’t share their political views and then there’s these other people with whom I hypothetically sure political views and I don’t admire them at all what’s going on and then I read road to Wigan pair and I thought oh that’s it they don’t like the poor they just hate the rich it’s not the same thing it’s not the same set of motivations and so let’s say that you’re a post modernist and you privilege compassion for the oppressed think well what do you push to the margins well what are you doing with all your hatred and your resentment and your evil it’s like you don’t have any of that that’s a bad theory that’s a really bad theory okay so fine so you can say well yeah you can say that but I don’t buy it I still think that the people who stand to speak for the oppressed or in fact motivated by empathy and sympathy their hearts are in the right place see I don’t really buy that either because I don’t really think generally speaking that it’s a credible claim for someone to make that their heart is in the right place now you can ask that of yourself and if you think your heart is in the right place well more power to you you know I I I can’t see the halo from here however [Laughter] and so given that you’re just as malevolent as your neighbor or maybe even more so and that that’s actually pretty malevolent given the intrinsic nature of human beings I can’t help but wonder what you’re doing with all those traits that you’re not admitting to but you can you could even object well you know that’s a pretty pessimistic view of humankind it’s not by the way it’s just not naive but anyways you could object that and you could say no actually the weight of moral authority is in fact on the Left even the radical left with those who identify with the oppressed and who are working to better their conditions ok fair enough so then let’s say well let’s give those people some power and if they’re actually motivated by compassion and empathy and desire for the working class if you give them power and you give their ideas power then as those ideas unfold in real time you’re gonna find out like do things get better for the working class let’s say or do they get worse because we could we could consider that like an experiment we could consider the outcome proof I I don’t know what else you would do I don’t know how else you would you would come to your decision because it’s just theory till you see it happen now Nietzsche said back in the eighteen late 1800s that after he said that God was dead and I suppose that would also mean the theory that of suffering that I outlined at the beginning that is at the basis of judeo-christian civilization that God was dead and that people had killed him and that we’d never find enough water to wash away the blood it’s a paraphrase but I’ve got the basic message right and he also said there’ll be two consequences of that nihilism because there’s no transcendent meaning and a move to totalitarianism because people can’t tolerate nihilism they said the most likely pathway to totalitarianism would be communism essentially he didn’t quite use those words but he meant that he they words are close enough he said socialism but I’m going to use communism to distinguish in it distinguish it from democratic socialism and he said that probably tens of hundreds of millions of people would die in the 20th century as we played out that experiment and then he said but it might be worth it if we learned something from it rough man I mean and and unbelievable like I cannot figure out how in the world he knew that that was going to happen especially so far in advance but Dostoyevsky knew the same thing he wrote this book called the Devils or the possessed you could read that that’s a great book it takes about a hundred and fifty pages to get going but once it like everything everything snaps together after that you know and then it moves and it’s basically his prophecy about it’s an examination of the kind of person who had arisen in the aftermath of the death of God in Russia who would lead the Communist revolution that’s essentially it and it’s brilliant it’s it’s it’s terrifying and it’s a great intro to Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago which describes what did happen when those sort of people took over the revolution so let’s look at what happened after the Revolution and we might say well this how about we replicate the experiment a few times because you know how it is if you’re running a scientific experiment you want to find out what something does if you allow it to behave you don’t want to just run it once because well maybe there is something specific about those conditions that led to the outcome you want to generalize it across multiple circumstances so we might say well let’s take this set of ideas and let’s let’s run it on a large scale over a very long period of time in a variety of exceptionally diverse cultures and languages so let’s do that okay well we could first start with the with the Soviets people even now because it’s like the hundredth anniversary of the Russian Revolution or celebrating Lenin it’s like that’s not good that’s like celebrating Hitler okay I’m dead serious about that it’s not good and the fact that people can dare to think that that’s okay means that there’s something wrong with the way that we look at history Lenin was a monster and if you want to know about that you can read souls and instance writings about Lenin because they Communist apologists say well I wasn’t Lenin Lenin was a good guy he was all motivated by love of the working class it’s like well his henchman was Stalin and if your henchman is Stalin you’re not a good guy and and Lenin was around during the early collectivization and if you read what he wrote you’ll find out that he is perfectly willing to have any number of people die as long as his ideological system could be brought into being so there’s no celebrating Lenin there’s no work cool young Marxist hip revolutionaries and he’s our Idol it’s like there’s none of that not if you know anything not if you’re decent well there was death of the cool acts I told you about that there was the Ukrainian famine that’s 6 million gone there there was the rise of the gulag state because it turned out that Russia the Soviet Union couldn’t run on the principles that it had that it had laid down as sacrosanct they just didn’t work so you had enslaved everybody and run your economy as a slave state essentially and try not to kill the people in the gulags so fast that you can’t suck some productive labor out of them was the death of tens of millions of people we don’t even know the estimates range from 15 to 60 million and like we won’t get to Picayune about the numbers because after the first 10 million you kind of made your point and the fact that we don’t know between 15 and 60 is actually an indication of the horror of it because our count is off by tens of millions and that’s only within the last century and then there was the 1956 crackdown on Hungary and the 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia then was the whole like thermal nuclear holocaust thing that was going on at the same time in the fact that in 1962 and in 1984 we were seconds away from complete annihilation right during the Cuban Missile Crisis the keys were in the intercontinental ballistic missile release systems and Castro as he admitted to Jimmy Carter in case any of you are Castro fans which you shouldn’t be that he was perfectly willing to have Cuba annihilate it if it would have meant the defeat of the United States and then in 1984 approximately I may have the date exactly wrong the Russians received an indication from their early warning systems that the Americans had launched five thermonuclear missiles and one Russian decided that it was a mistake and refused to launch the retaliation and he just died about two weeks ago so you know that was pretty close and so that was experiment number one let’s say that that wasn’t good that experiment let’s put it that way it wasn’t good it was exactly the antithesis of good it was precisely the antithesis of good but that wasn’t all I mean there’s the People’s Republic of China that’s a different country like seriously a different country right different tradition different language how many people died in China under Mao no one knows same issue with the Soviet Union although mile was a bigger monster than Stalin and that’s that’s impressive you know because there’s Hitler there’s Stalin and there’s mile and of the three mile was probably the worst he’s still revered in China maybe that accounts for their affinity for North Korea which could still destroy us all the remnants of that horrible state maybe a hundred million people died in China during the Great Leap Forward that’s a hell of a leap forward well maybe it wasn’t a hundred million you know maybe it was only 40 million but as I said before when you’re counting in the tens of millions your points already made and then there was Cambodia and the killing fields and Bulgaria and East Germany and Romania and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea that’s North Korea and Vietnam and Ethiopia Hungary etc etc etc there was never a successful communist state Cuba I suppose came closest but it was radically the Soviets poured money into Cuba so that doesn’t really count so then the first question was well are these Marxists motivated by love or hatred well is it love or hatred that produces a hundred million dead people is that enough evidence or not and if it’s not enough evidence if you think to yourself well that’s not enough evidence it was never really given its proper a proper try it’s like well what would have been a proper try see I always think when I hear someone say that I know what you think you think in your delusional arrogance that you understand the Marxist doctrines better than anyone else ever has and that if you are the one implementing those doctrines you would have ushered in the utopia that’s what you mean when you say that and you know they say and there’s an idea in the new testament that there’s a sin it’s the sin against the holy ghost if you commit that sin no one really knows what it is that you can’t be forgiven and i would say well if you want a candidate for the sin against the holy ghost in the 21st century the statement communism real communism was never tried with the underlying idea that if you had been the person implementing it it would have worked i think that’s a pretty good contender for something for which you should never be forgiven all right so that’s Marxism so let’s go on to post-modernism we talked a little bit about it now hypothetically it’s an attitude of skepticism irony towards rejection of grand narratives ideologies and universalism criticizes objective notions of reason human nature social progress absolute truth and objective reality it’s predicated on the idea that the reason that you categorize especially that the reason that you categorize is to marginalize you categorize to marginalize to obtain power powers pretty much all there is there’s other elements of post-modernism one of them is that human nature is merely a social construct see the reason for that as far as I’m concerned and this is a postmodern critique as well I’m going to move the center to the margin and the margin to the center’s why would you think that human nature is only a social construct well here’s why it’s because that means you could construct it any way you want to that was a very common idea among us among the communists you know they that’s why Moll wanted to wipe out Chinese history that’s why the Red Guard went around in China and tried to destroy everything every element of China’s history prior to approximately 1960 at that great culture thousands and thousands of years old as well so you could bring in the new man but what is the new man well was whatever slave Mao happened to fantasize about or it was the utopian person you take your pick but like I said if you take a look at the corpses you can pretty much figure out which of those two it was so what’s up with these people these deconstructionist sees post modernists what are they up to exactly well here’s the first thing they came about pretty much when Marxism was no longer credible no longer tenable as an intellectual a set of intellectual propositions now if you were a French intellectual you had to have a lot of corpses piled at your feet before you were willing to think that you were wrong so here’s an example I don’t remember his name he was the architect of the killing fields in Cambodia it wasn’t Paul Pott it was one of his advisers unfortunately I can’t remember his name he took his PhD at the Sorbonne and he developed the thesis set in the Sorbonne what Marxist thesis that the cities were parasites on on the land you know it’s an extension of the whole bourgeoisie proletariat thing the cities were full of bourgeois types educated and educated parasites essentially who were doing nothing but stealing what was rightly the farmers so when he came back to Cambodia he put that into action and emptied out the cities and put all the intellectuals and the city dwellers either to death or to work which generally resulted in death and killed about one-sixth to one-quarter of the population but he got his PhD from the Sorbonne and that’s a good story because that’s exactly how complicit the Western leftist intellectuals were in facilitating the horrors of the 20th century and it’s not like we’ve learned anything since then quite the contrary we just gone underground and that’s what I see that’s what I see when I see post-modernism so what happened was despite the affinity of Western intellectuals for Marxism maybe because they weren’t paid as much as bankers let’s say if we’re being cynical about it because I’ve often thought that if you paid sociologists as much as investment bankers they’d be capitalists very rapidly walls which is also to say that you may under pay intellectuals at your peril and you know that’s actually dangerous because one of the things that’s happening is that as the universities have become corporatized and corrupted in a variety of ways more and more of the professor’s are adjuncts right I think it’s up to 30 40 50 percent something like that now they’ve got no tenure they’ve got no job security and they’re paid like $24,000 a year it’s not a good idea to radicalize the people that are teaching your children but anyways by the end of the 60s so much data on the catastrophic failures of communism had accrued that even the most intransigent of French intellectuals had to admit that the jig was up but that’s a problem because that’s the whole ideology right that’s the whole raise on debt he says in this terrible Alberta French you’re gonna just give that up what are you gonna do after that well what happened was post-modernism was invented and so it’s a sleight of hand as far as I can tell so and and with post-modernism identity politics and so the postmodern transformation is well we’re a little wrong with the working-class thing turns out that communists killed them all and capitalists make them all rich and that’s actually exactly the opposite of what we predicted but maybe there’s still a way this could be salvaged how about if we we don’t say working-class capitalists we say oppressor oppressed well just we’ll just trance transform the terminology a bit and we’ll start thinking about all the other ways that people are oppressed and then and all the other ways that people are oppressors and then we can play the same damn game under a new guise and now look the post modernists were Marxist so let’s make no mistake Derrida himself said that post-modernism was a transformation of Marxism I’m not making this up the question is why well yeah because you could say well post-modernism is a valid philosophical school and we’ll get into that for a minute and they make some valid claims one of them for example this is a central post modernist claim is that there’s an infinite number of ways of interpreting the world and that actually turns out to be technically correct part of the reason that we’ve had a very difficult time building robots AI robots that can operate in the real world is because perceiving the real world turns out to be so difficult that we really can’t figure out how human beings do it because it is susceptible to an infinite number of interpretations so that’s actually correct now I’m not going to give the post modernists a tremendous amount of credit for discovering that because it was discovered simultaneously in about five disciplines at pretty much the same time but you give the devil his due so so what’s the logic it’s something like well there’s an infinite number of interpretations of the world you can’t tell which of those are canonically correct correct the basic narrative of human struggle is oppressor versus oppressed we use category structures to constrain that infinite number of interpretations because the basic narrative is oppressor versus oppressed we choose those narratives that serve our function as oppressors so it’s deeply cynical but credible you know and you can say if you’re not naive that people are motivated by power and that our interpretations of the world can be self-serving I mean we do want to serve ourselves after all because otherwise we die and so and we are centered in one place and so we can’t see everything and we’re biased so so there is the probability that the way that we look in the world at the world will be tainted by narrow self-interest and maybe even tainted by in-group interests beyond narrow individual self-interest and we know the is true but it’s also not all bad you know like we a good person takes care of his or her family what does that mean what means you prefer your family to outsiders you we’re gonna get rid of that it’s a form of prejudice like it really is like your choice of sexual partner is a form of prejudice right I mean maybe it should be distributed in an egalitarian manner hey that would be a lot funnier if it isn’t a possibility like in in in in in Huxley’s brave new world that was the rule you you shared yourself with whoever asked because it was rude not to and you know what it is actually rude not to it’s seriously rude now is that something you want to take away from people you want that to be distributed in an egalitarian fashion how prejudiced are you when you choose someone to sleep with you choose that person and not everyone else it’s the ultimate in prejudice if they you say well that’s not prejudicial oh yes it is you usually go for the most attractive partner you could find usually go for the healthiest partner you go for the best person you can find who can tolerate you it’s prejudicial in every possible way so well so ok so you’re self-serving and you construct a view of the world that serves those self-serving causes and some of that has to do with power fair enough that doesn’t mean it all has to do with power though it means that some of it has to do with power it’s like racism people are kind of racist or maybe people prefer their in-group it’s not that easy or maybe people prefer the familiar to the novel you know that IAT that the social psychologists have come up with implicit association test that measures unconscious bias we don’t know what the hell that measures the people who invented that bloody thing they know we don’t know what it measures they know it’s not reliable they know it’s not valid enough to be used as an individual diagnostic instrument that’s technically the case they also know that you can’t train people out of their own car just biases because there is not much difference between unconscious bias and instantaneous perception but they don’t really care I’ve written to mahzarin banaji he’s one of the inventors of the IAT several times saying how about you come out in public and say what you already know which is that people are misusing your damned tests silence well that’s partly because her discipline Social Psychology is a corrupt discipline as the social psychologists have discovered over the last four years and be turning themselves inside out trying to rectify which they haven’t anyways we’re giving the devil his due there’s an infinite number of interpretations of the world and it’s highly probable that you’ll lay a self-serving one on top of it yes and also that’ll serve the interests of your group however you define that yes but it only accounts for a fraction of your behavior there’s all sorts of other things at work as well and you don’t get to reduce all human motivations to one motivation power and then you might also ask well why would you want to reduce all human motivations to power it’s so you can use power that’s why you can justify the use of power that’s force you don’t have to engage in civilize debate you don’t have to give a damn about the facts especially if you’re not a postmodernist because you don’t believe in facts anyways and you might ask well why don’t you am not kidding I’m not kidding post modernists don’t believe in facts they believe that the idea of fact is part of the power game that’s place played by the white dominated male patriarchy to impose the tyrannical structure of the patriarchy on the oppressors it’s like I’m not making this stuff up it’s embedded right in the theory all you have to do is read it and you find this out so they don’t believe in facts while facts would constrain the use of power at least that’s how it looks to me okay so fine we gave the devil as dude there’s an infinite number of interpretations and you’re likely to use biased compression algorithms on the world and they’re likely to be biased in your favor true but only partly true and the difference between an ideologue and the thinker is that a thinker knows the difference between things that are only partly true and things that are completely true things are complicated like I like to think everything is as complicated as a military helicopter you have to like I think it’s eight hours of maintenance to keep those things in the air for one hour because they don’t fly their rocks they plummet it’s really hard to keep them in the air and they’re full of parts and you and if you don’t know all those parts you don’t go in there and monkey about with them because it’s just wreck it and that’s just a helicopter like everything is way more complicated than a helicopter so you don’t just do luck about in there hoping you’re gonna make it better that isn’t how it works you need to be competent all right so look here’s where the postmodernists are wrong I think there’s three places and they’re serious errors the first is that there is an infinite number of interpretations but there is not an infinite number of viable interpretations there’s a very finite number of viable interpretations and I don’t think that this is theory I think that game theorists have already demonstrated this to some degree and it’s going to be built into AI systems very rapidly okay so what are the constraints okay first of all you can’t have an interpretation that leads to immediately to your death or you’re dead now if you want to be dead that’s fine but if you don’t want to be then you’ve got a lot of limited options right you don’t get to run naked across an eight-lane freeway at night blindfolded because probably you’ll be dead that’s a bad interpretation okay so you might say because you’re fragile and vulnerable and mortal that there’s a limited number of ways that you can look at the world that don’t result in let’s say death or serious damage or agony that’s a bad thing agony is a bad thing most people agree on that so you’re constrained by pain and anxiety at least your interpretations are constrained by pain and anxiety and you know you can make pain worse or better by thinking about it to some degree but only to some degree when push comes to shove pain is your master okay so that’s a big constraint that’s a big big constraint well but the constraints are worse than that because not only do you not get to have an interpretation of the world that produces anxiety and suffering right now but you don’t get to have an interpretation of the world that if you iterated across time produces pain and suffering and so that’s that’s a big problem because there’s lots of you could go out tonight and get yourself blind drunk on cocaine and sleep with six hookers and you know maybe that maybe that’d be a good night you know you might not think about it being so good tomorrow but then maybe you’re dead of AIDS in a year or maybe you’re addicted to cocaine or maybe you’re a street alcoholic or whatever it’s like as an iterable game that’s a down hill and the thing is you play iterated games you don’t play one you play iterated games and so your interpretation of the world has to be one that will sustain multiple iterations across time because you have to worry about 40 year old you and 60 year old you and that’s a big problem that’s a lot of used stretched over a long period of time and it’s worse than that because it’s not just you it’s like you and your family right and not only so not only do you have to take care of yourself now in a manner that allows you to take care of yourself when you’re 40 you have to take care of yourself now in a manner that takes care of you when you’re 40 so that other people are happy to have you around now and continually so that they’ll cooperate and compete with you in a positive way and so that’s getting ridiculously complicated it’s not just you now and you in the future it’s you surrounded by other people doing the same thing now and in the future and there’s a lot of other people it can’t even just be you and your family you know like like the psychopathic burglar mob that’s just not gonna go so well right other people are gonna object and the world is gonna object and so fine there’s an infinite number of interpretations that doesn’t mean there’s an infinite number of viable interpretations in fact they’re hardly any they’re hardly any playable games now Piaget Jean Piaget the developmental psychologist who’s a very smart guy he pointed out something very interesting he said now Janu ran a set of iterated games as a competition and in one iterated game the rule was you bloody well do what I tell you to and the other one is well we’ll all get together and decide how we’re going to do this okay now we run the competition well PJ’s claim is you do what I tell you fails and the reason for that is I have to impose force in order to keep you cooperating and the imposition of force is a cost it’s an efficiency cost and across time that efficiency cost is going to multiply and the equilibrated state solution which is the one where we all agree it wins now that’s worth thinking about you think you think about that locally so you’ve got you’re trying to organize your family you have a little family conference about who’s doing what in the household and what do you if you want peace and harmony and an iterated game you get everybody to say well here’s the tasks and we they have to be done people have to agree on that and then you say well which task would you do you have to some how about you and you know which task would you do and everybody agrees and then you say well unless you can come up with a better solution that’s the one we’re gonna go with and then people can be a little resentful and angry about the conditions of existence where they have to work but you can’t really blame that on anyone else and maybe that’s the best solution you can come up with and that was PJ’s idea of the equilibrate estate it was like it’s a voluntary agreement that can be iterated across time that works at multiple levels of social organization man that’s a serious serious serious set of constraints and BSA by the way was looking for a way to reconcile science and religion he was looking for a biological origin to morality and he thought he found it in the idea of the equilibrated state that’s even deeper than that so imagine this equilibrate the state ideas actually there’s something to it that if you set the state up properly it will iterate across time so long that it becomes a permanent part of the environment hierarchy is exactly that’s exactly what a hierarchy is hierarchies are 350 million years old they’re not the patriarchal invention of white European Christian males in the last 300 years there 350 million years old they’re stable they’re stable solutions to this iterated game problem and they’ve been around so long that we’re actually adapted to them and that’s part of the reason we have archetypal representations of the social structure so and we also have archetypal representations of the relationship of the individual to the social structure your job as an individual in relationship to the social structure is to embody the social structure but also to serve as its eyes and its mouth so that can update itself when necessary so you take on the mantle of your father let’s say but he’s dead he’s the past he can’t see you can see so you take the structure that’s already there and you modify it where it’s necessary and that modification process is necessary or the state becomes too static and collapses and that’s why the state has to be subordinate to the individual and that’s what Western culture has discovered and we can’t just let them go that’s the idea the logos that’s a big idea and you’d want to live somewhere where you want to live somewhere where the individual is subordinate to the state it’s like hey go right ahead there’s lots of places like that man emigrate go there 90% of the world’s countries are like that if you want to live like that man go find out what it’s like you don’t see immigration going there that’s for sure okay so that’s a big mistake that the postmodern is made it’s not trivial that’s a big mistake but it’s not the only one here’s another one they don’t like inequality but who does I’m against poverty you know that’s like classic protest sign it’s like really it’s like I’m Against Torture it’s like it’s so obvious you don’t get any brownie points for being against poverty no one in the right mind is for poverty you know you ever watch The Simpsons you ever see they’re the Republican Party in the Simpsons they all meet in an old haunted castle at night with like lightning bolts going off and there’s a vampire and a crazy text and then even the Simpson Republicans don’t sit around in the haunted Tower at midnight saying hey we need more poverty here’s an interesting thing so one of the postmodernist claims is that diversity is necessary and they make it racial and they make it sexual they make it ethnic and all of that that’s actually technically incorrect by the way because I study individual differences so those are the differences between people and I know the literature so you know about James des Morris memo right from Google he wrote that partly because he was watching my videos which is why he wanted me to interview him and I’m a believer that there are biological differences in temperament between men and women apart from the other obvious differences and that they’re actually non-trivial and that they maximize in the societies that have the most have moved farthest to producing egalitarian states the Scandinavian countries and that the reason for that is that there’s two reasons why men and women differ in temperament one is biological and the other is environmental and if you remove the environmental variation which you do if you make the stadia latarian you maximise the genetic variation and that’s been demonstrated in the scientific literature over about four decades and no one wanted it or hoped for it and they weren’t biased in looking for it because that was exactly the opposite of what social scientists wanted to find because social scientists lean heavily to the left and what they wanted to find was you flatten out the state so that everyone has equal opportunity and the differences between people disappear that is not what happened the opposite happened that wasn’t wrong and no one was happy about it and no one’s happy about it now you can actually when you’ve discovered something in the social science because you’re not happy about it but if you take let’s say there’s a big difference between men and women in terms of trait agreeableness compassion and politeness on average women are more agreeable than men and the difference is approximately this if you take random pairs of men and women out of the population let’s say you had to make a bet on who was more agreeable if you bet that it was the woman you’d be right 60% of the time well that’s not that much means you’d be wrong forty percent of the time that’s almost fifty percent of the time so this is a big difference by social science standards but that’s the magnitude of the difference there are some differences that are bigger like the difference between men and women’s interest in people versus things is actually bigger than that that’s the biggest difference we know but it’s a big difference let’s say the agreeable this difference but still they the shared attributes of men and women far outweigh the attributes that differentiate them because you could ask are there more differences within groups or between them now the postmodern answered that is between them that’s why you need diversity by group right that’s why you need different races that’s why you need different ethnicities and sexual preferences and all of that well that’s wrong there’s moral difference within the groups than there is between them you don’t get diversity by crossing the groups you get diversity by by selecting across individuals in fact the idea that there is more differences between groups that there is between individuals is actually the fundamental racist idea it’s the fundamental racist idea which is well let’s say you’re Asian Oriental to use the old word to discriminate the one type of Asian say from the other you’re so different from me that there’s no overlap between our groups and you’re also so different and there’s so little difference within your group that now that I know that you’re not me you’re not one of mine I actually know what you’re like no technically that’s incorrect that’s wrong that isn’t how you get diversity now diversity is actually necessary because people differ in intelligence and they different temperament they different skills and so you actually need diversity because otherwise you can’t take advantage of all those differences so you need diversity but you need genuine diversity and like what would genuine diversity mean if you’re trying to put together a work team you want enough you want people of sufficient diversity so that they more or less so that you gather together the appropriate talents to produce the implement that’s necessary to work properly in the world that’s a competence marker because otherwise your business is gonna fail and so the proper diversity with regards to employment is the diversity that meets the the requirements of the business essentially obviously that’s why you try to hire people carefully and not randomly let’s say third error first errors there’s only a finite number of valid interpretations second error is that there are real differences between groups of people but there’s more difference within the groups than between them third difference is social status and payment especially in a free democratic capitalist society is based more on competence than on power in fact we would say that when a person in a hierarchy starts to act like their position entitles them to power then that hierarchy has become corrupt Harvey Weinstein is a good example of that I’m serious it’s like he acts acted like a tyrant what happened to him it’s not good not good for him what he did was not good but it’s an indication it’s revealed it’s an indication that that misuse so he’s competent fine he gets to have position because we need people who are confident but that doesn’t mean you get to turn into a tire if you turn into a tyrant then that overshadows your competence and out you go that’s the definition of a functioning state and our state essentially functions it’s not perfect that’s for sure but compared to what that’s the issue compared to your hypothetical Marxist utopia well compared to your hypothetical Marxist utopia I mean we’re living in Osh wits but you’re but your actual Marxist utopia is indistinguishable from Auschwitz so we’re not listening to that comparison we’re gonna take a look at what we have and we’re gonna compare it to other places that actually existed in time and geographically and by those criteria it’s like is there another time you’d rather live another place you’d rather live I mean a real place in a real time I mean you want to live back in 1895 even in the Western world where the average person lived on less than a dollar a day and today is money you want to live like those coal miners it’s like the answer to that snow if you have any sense you should have some gratitude that’s another problem with the postmodern neo-marxist like zero zero zero gratitude it’s all oh my god i’m oppressed of course you’re oppressed but you’re not impressed by the patriarchy for God’s sake so you have status in a hierarchy you might say well that’s like a reward so you’re you’re a high status person it’s a reward the reward should be shared equally it’s like a badge of merit that you get it’s a privilege it’s not the reason that in a capitalist society filthy selfish capitalists put you in the position so they can extract maximum productivity from you and that’s exactly why you’re there you get paid you get paid so you keep working why do we want you to work because your work is actually valuable to us and so we’re gonna pay you so you don’t quit it’s not a reward because you’re a good guy it’s not a privilege that’s not what it is you don’t hand those things out like merit badges that’s not how it works the society is set up on selfish principles we pay people who are competent so they won’t stop striving because we want what they can produce so you don’t just distribute that like like it’s a gift it’s not a gift it’s not a gift at all so that’s another place where they’re wrong social status and payment is the consequence of the selfish desire of individuals and the group to extract resources of intellect creativity and industriousness from those who possess them in excess now of course it’s not a hundred percent like that there’s incompetent people who rise to the top you can fool people and you can manipulate them and you can act like a tyrant and you know we might say maybe the system is like 30 percent warped something like that it’s not much more than that because we can account for people’s success across life by looking at their individual differences intelligence conscientiousness emotional stability creativity we can do a pretty good job of predicting their trajectory so there’s error some of its health right because sometimes you’ve got what you need but you get cut off at the knees or your family members do or you know some tragic thing befalls you with there’s a randomness in this system that accounts for a fair bit of it and then there’s a certain amount of corruption fair enough but not so much that the lights go off okay what time is it 8:15 and I started win sorry it’s me 6:30 I should stop them I’m gonna go for five more minutes and then I’ll wrap this up I want to talk about intersectionality and and white privilege a bit so so I first said well we analyze Marxism we have analyzed post-modernism I suggested that post-modernism was a way for the Marxist to keep going under a new guys I suggested that Marxism was fundamentally based on hatred rather than sympathy and an empathy I suggested that the corpses were the evidence for that I told you why I think post-modernism is fundamentally wrong but now I want to talk to you a little bit about white privilege so the first thing that I can and I haven’t got this quite figured oh yeah I can’t quite figure out why the post modernists have made the canonical distinctions they’ve made race ethnicity sexual proclivity sexual gender identity let’s say those are four dimensions along which people vary but there’s a very large number of dimensions along which people vary right in fact given that there’s an infinite number of ways of interpreting the world you could immediately point out that there’s an infinite number of dimensions along which people vary and so then the postmodern question is why would you privilege some of those dimensions over the other and I would say well because it sustains your bloody Marxist interpretation that’s why but you’re not gonna say that because it marginalizes right you’ve marginalized that so you can ignore it so that’s one of the fun things about post-modernism you can you can I have a very vulgar image in my mind but I won’t share that with you but you can infer it here’s some ways people differ intelligence temperament geography historical time you live now and not a hundred years ago attractiveness that’s a big that’s a big one that’s a big one but you imagine you you could you won’t go there either you he it’s it’s advantageous to be young you’ve got potential it’s advantageous to be old you’ve got wealth health that’s a good one sexes women have advantages men have advantages maybe one has more than the other it’s not self-evident women live about eight years longer they’re multi-orgasmic athleticism well family structure friendship education well then there’s the classic you know postmodern once race ethnicity etc why not those other very dimensions of variation there’s no evidence that they’re less important in fact there’s quite a bit of evidence that they’re more important so like why not consider them then you get intersectionality this is one of the things that’s really comical I think because the post modernists identity politics types actually realized this they thought well okay race and gender fair enough what if your what if you’re a black woman that’s a problem because well now you’ve got two dimensions of differentiation what the hell are we gonna do about that what if your what if you’re gay and black and female well then what if you’re not very bright and gay and black and female and then what if you’re ugly and not very bright and gay and black and female and like you can keep playing that game you can keep playing that game an infinite number of ways because there’s an infinite number of ways to categorize things as the post modernist already pointed out and so the intersectionality theorist came along to plug the hole but they don’t know where they’re going they don’t understand that the logical conclusion of intersectionality is individuality because there’s so many different ways of categorizing people’s advantages and disadvantages that if you take that all the way out to the end you say well the individual is the ultimate minority and that’s exactly right and that’s exactly what the West discovered and you know the intersection list so get there if they don’t kill everyone first so onto white privilege so it’s really interesting to find out where these ideas come from because it’s usually the scholarship is so awful you just cannot possibly believe it it’s just absolutely it wouldn’t in at the University of Toronto in the psychology department the original paper on white privilege wouldn’t have received a passing grade for the hypothesis part of a undergraduate honors thesis we’re not even close there’s no methodology at all the person who wrote it it was called white privilege and male privilege a personal account of coming to see correspondences through work in women’s studies well first of all personal account is like sorry no so she she listed a bunch of ways that she thought she says these are personal personal examples of her unearned privilege or unearned privilege that she saw as she experienced in the 1970s 1980s so this by the way that so this idea is the opinion of one person who wrote one paper that has absolutely no empirical backing whatsoever which is a set of hypotheses which has never been subject to any statistical analysis like if I ask you a bunch of questions it’s not obvious how many questions I’m asking you because I could say how tall are you or I could say if you’re laying on the ground how extended would you be it’s like that two questions it’s like no it’s one question it’s just asked two ways and the way you figure out if you ask someone a bunch of questions how many questions you’re asking them is by doing something called a factor analysis which is kind of an elementary form now of social science investigation if you make a questionnaire you have to subject it to a factor analysis because you got to find out how many questions you’re asking because you might think it’s 60 but it’s probably not it’s probably five that’s the big five by the way anyways who cares about that there’s no such thing as methodology anyways that’s all part of the oppressive white male European patriarchy so we can just not bother with that and we can pen a few notes about how we think the world is constructed and then we can screw up the entire political system two decades later okay so here’s your white privilege list some of it there’s like 50 things I can if I wish 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 and in which I would want to live that’s actually a well thing by the way I can be pretty sure that my neighbors in such a location will be neutral or pleasant to me I can go shopping alone most of the time pretty well assured that I will not be followed or harassed I can turn on my television or open to the front page of the paper and see people of my waist race widely represented when I’m told about our national heritage or about civilization I am shown that people of my color made it what it is there’s 50 of those I think something like that okay is that white privilege is that like majority privilege is the same true you go to China you’re Chinese it’s the same true if you’re Chinese this is a majority privilege and if its majority privileges like isn’t that just part of living within your culture so let’s say you live in your culture you’re privileged as a member of that culture well obviously that’s what the culture is for that’s what it’s for why would you bother building the damn thing if it didn’t accrue benefits to you now you might say well one of the consequences that it accrues fewer benefits to those who aren’t in the culture yeah but you can’t immediately associate that with race you can’t just do that say it’s white privileged there’s many things that could be certainly could be wealth and the intersectional people have already figured out that there’s many things it could be so like what the hell seriously well what’s going on well we let these pseudo disciplines into the university because we’re stupid and guilty seriously and they have no methodological requirements and plenty of power and plenty of time to produce nonsensical research and produce like resentful activists and now we’re bearing the fruits of that it’s not pretty so white privilege well the other thing you might notice is that to attribute to the individuals of a community the attributes of that community on the basis of their racial identity is called racism that’s what racism is there’s no other way of defining it it’s attributing to the individual the characteristics of the group as if the group was homogeneous now the intersectional people have already decided that’s not a fair game there’s so many differences between people but the postmodernist don’t care about logical coherence because they regard logical coherence here it comes again as a creation of the white European male patriarchal structure that’s designed to oppress the oppressed and that’s technically the case so logical in coherence it doesn’t matter and you could say well if you act out your logically incoherent ideas in the world you’re gonna run face first into a brick wall and the postmodern answer to that is there’s actually no real world it’s all interpretation so there’s no there’s no having that discussion but the post modernists don’t care because they don’t believe that discussion between people of different power groups as possible anyways so here we are well so I made a case tonight you know I’ll go over what’s the case the post modernists are wrong they’re philosophically naive they’re right about an infinite number of interpretations and wrong about a finite number of viable interpretations and that’s like that’s that’s death that’s the end of post modernist theory and that’s not the only way in which they’re wrong they’re wrong in a bunch of other ways but they’re more subsidiary the Marxists they’re not just wrong they’re wrong and murderous or wrong murderous and Jenna Seidel unless you think murderous and genocide ‘el doesn’t mean wrong and you you can think that there’s lots of would-be revolutionaries who would be happy to have blood running in the street if they had their chance for revenge and the opportunity to move up the hierarchy of tyranny so you can you you don’t have to think that murder and genocide is wrong especially if the right people are murdered and genocided right that’s actually part of the part of the whole equation but if you’re willing to think that murder and genocide on a mass scale across many cultures over many decades is wrong then Marxism is wrong and the post modernists don’t get to just come along and a dot Marxism as a matter of sleight of hand because they’re marxist theory didn’t work out and they figured out a rationalization they don’t get to get away with that because it’s too dangerous it’s too dangerous to the rest of us and we don’t and it isn’t necessary for us who are trying with the small part of our hearts that might be oriented towards the good to allow people who are manipulating us with historical ignorance and philosophical sleight of hand to render us a god damn guilty about what our ancestors may or may not have done so that we allow our shame and our guilt to be to be used as tools to manipulate us into accepting a future that we do not want to have then that’s [Applause] it’s that work okay so we’re just gonna do the we’re gonna move on to the Q&A now but before we do the venue wants to do a little announcement sorry my name is Cameron we going the the co managing director heard the chance at her as you are all leaving tonight please be aware of something that’s come to light tonight outside the building there is an individual impersonating a UBC security guard it is not in the building it was in the rose garden there was no damage done nobody was hurt but there is an impersonator out there so just please be aware of that thank you very much so for those of you in the first two rows you can either line up here or at the mic over there and ask your questions and also try to keep it short because we don’t have that much time hello Jordan B Peterson um huge fan in your lectures use the term post-modernism interchangeably with cultural Marxism nihilism and moral relativism I wonder if you’ve considered or heard alternative beliefs that the term post-modernism is not necessary is necessarily always congruent on a one-to-one scale of these other terms and in some limited circumstances is positive specifically the idea that wouldn’t you’d use the term post-modernism to vilify is by some others referred to as pseudo modernism whereas some would call what you endorse to not be modernism but in fact meta modernism postmillennialism or post post-modernism which unfortunately has a terrible name and then I have very brief definitions of those words if you need me to well no as I said tonight you have to give the devilís do and so we’ll do that so yes there is a very large number of ways of interpreting the world there’s no doubt about that yes people use biased interpretive lenses too as means of interpreting the world to put their own priorities forward without necessarily knowing that they’re doing so and that that can corrupt them and society the psychoanalysts figured that out way before the post modernist so they don’t get any credit for that like really none so it’s useful to keep those things in mind it’s when they’re put but it’s when they’re put for it is absolute truth that disturbs me it’s like yes people are probably racist they might even be implicitly racist although we don’t know what that means and we don’t know how it’s related to their explicit behavior and we can’t separate it from in-group preference or necessarily from reaction to novelty so it’s a tricky business you know and we don’t know how to separate stereotypical racial perceptions from perceptual heuristics we don’t know how to do that because you’re always oversimplifying the world because you’re not smart enough to live in the world as it is you have to oversimplify it so yes there are times when post-modernism is useful i used it quite useful ii tonight to deconstruct post-modernism in fact so but but weights when it’s turned into an absolute especially a moral absolute that it and when it’ll eyes itself with Marxism it’s like sorry guys know you don’t like grand narratives you don’t get to go there well that’s where you that isn’t where you went that’s where you came from you never you never left there so that’s that’s basically what i have to say about that thanks hello dr. peterson thank you very much and my question is regarding ADHD which is something i haven’t heard you speak a whole lot about maybe a little bit now it seems to me that we or at least maybe just me do not quite understand ADHD too what could be its full capacity maybe and because there’s many many voices saying that it’s an over diagnosed overblown small mental variance that’s prevalent in boys or it’s just young boys being young boys and then there are some that would fight and advocate for very different treatment in the academic world and I was wondering what you what your thoughts are on ADHD itself and on the whether you think it’s over diagnosed and maybe advice for me as someone who has been diagnosed with ADHD on how to overcome it without maybe becoming completely reliant on prescribed medication okay so first of all it’s definitely over diagnosed second it’s it’s a very unreliable psychiatric diagnosis many psychiatric diagnosis are unreliable and that’s because psychiatric diagnosis aren’t precisely scientific categories they’re weird hybrids right first of all psychiatrists aren’t scientists they’re engineers engineers are trying to do something rather than to describe the objective world and psychiatrists are trying to make people healthy whatever that means it’s actually partly ethical it’s very complicated we don’t know how to distinguish it from temperamental variation so for example if you’re high in openness and high in extraversion and low in conscientiousness low and agreeableness conscientiousness and and high in neuroticism you’re likely to manifest symptoms of ADHD it’s because you’re exploratory you don’t like to sit down you’re full of ideas your attention scatters across a wide variety of topics and you’re not very stable temperamental variation it’s also much more common among boys panksepp showed same guy with rats that if you deprive young rats of rough and tumble play which is what the young boys are deprived of in school let’s say that they get hyperactive and then their prefrontal cortexes don’t develop very well because they’re not having the right kind of experiences and that you can treat that quite effectively with psychomotor stimulants like ritalin so that’s kind of an interesting bit of scientific information that no one pays any attention to there is also absolutely no evidence whatsoever that long-term use of psychomotor stimulants produces increases in cognitive gain zero and there’s plenty of evidence that it’s harmful so then the second part of that was what about adjustments for in the academic world say we disability adjustments it’s like that’s a such a rat’s nest that I don’t want to even discuss it I mean it it I’ll discuss it for like 15 seconds there is a never-ending multiplication of disabilities that’s what’s happening right now the disability offices and the universities are swamped like I know some people have it rough like believe me I know that I was a problem I seriously know that I’ve dealt with extraordinarily damaged people in my life here you’re bloody hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t have a serious problem or who doesn’t have a his problem in a close family member it’s like where do you draw the line with regards to disabilities well you can’t you can’t they multiply just like LGBT identities multiply just no really technically just like that just like intersectionality categories of oppression multiply it’s it’s it’s inevitable the way that you deal with it is you have objective standards you apply them to everyone not because that’s fair it’s not fair if you if your criteria for fairness is that everyone has the same outcome it’s not fair at all it’s not even close to fair it’s just less tyrannical than the alternatives now we don’t know that yet because we haven’t seen the full range of the tyranny of the alternatives manifest itself not in our culture but it certainly did in other cultures I think it’s a bad idea now I don’t want to be absolute about that like it’s tricky you know because if you have a disability that would allow you to do the work in the university and in the workplace with a modification then perhaps the modification could be made but I think that was done a lot better when that was in the hands of the professor’s and not in the hands of these crazy bureaucratic structures that have risen up around the disability issue like they’re one of the ten things that are going to kill the universities or maybe have already killed them possibly because they mean they’re walking corpses as far as I can tell zombies so and that might be wrong but it’s what it looks like to me first thing I want to say thank you so much those an amazing talk and I was wondering if you could elaborate what I noticed a lot I go here the EBC is that a lot of students and young people they’re often desensitized to for example the atrocities that communism or ideologies that Forge terrorism and maybe it’s some sort of Stockholm Syndrome that I’m seeing where it’s like people are just their cat they’re like trapped and they can’t do they feel in a way they can’t do anything about it and then they start to like like like communism or they start to see more social sort socialist policies that in the end will get them killed we’ll get them hurt as long as you kind of like elaborate down on what you think can be done about that or even if something can be done it will not respect well I think something can be done I mean I’ve been trying to educate people about the horrors of the Nazi regime and and the Soviet regime in particular I’ve concentrated mostly on those two because but that’s good enough and trying to let people know that it was through the fault of people much like them that those systems arose and and that there are steps you can take to limit the probability that you would participate in such a thing and that those steps are associated with trying to be truthful in your speech and actions because the stability of those systems depends on the willingness of individuals to lie and and also on your willingness to take responsibility for the malevolence in your own heart that manifests itself in those social movements and so that when I don’t when I do my lectures when I do talks like this when I put them on YouTube what I’m trying to do is exactly that because that was the best pathway forward through such things that I could think up over 20 years of thinking about it no one is so habituated to suffering that they can read the Gulag Archipelago which is actually quite hard to read without having it affect them like your psychopathic if that book doesn’t affect you you know it should if you read it properly it affects you deeply and it’s not the only example of that kind of literature so the people who are habituated aren’t they’ve just been shown low resolution representations of things they don’t understand that look vaguely bad they don’t know a damn thing about them and our education system has done a tremendously appalling job of educating young people about the Lieut catastrophe of radical left isn’t now it’s not much better with regards to say the actions of the Nazis although I would say on average people are more aware of that but they don’t but it’s shallow shallow knowledge so you make the knowledge deep and deep knowledge changes people and wakes them up you know I mean the only reason that I ever got convinced that they’re that good and evil were real more more real than anything else wasn’t because I learned that good was real that’s hard that’s that’s hard it’s hard to learn that you have to find examples of transcendent good you know they’re rare evil all you have to do is look read history a bit and read it like it’s about you and there’s no way that you can do that without a transformation but people won’t do it it’s like you want to imagine yourself as an ostrich guard that’s a rough thing you see because you have to figure out see young said if you confronted the shadow which is the dark side of people the aggressive side the malevolent side that it it really reaches all the way down to hell and Dante sort of was trying to put forward the same thing when he wrote the inferno right with the levels of evil right because it was a voyage through the levels of evil right to the bottom he thought the bottom was betrayal it’s pretty good the most the center of malevolence is betrayal I like that because to betray someone you have to get them to trust you and Trust is a moral virtue right especially if it’s courageous Trust because it it puts you in alignment with other people and allows you to move forward into life and if you betray that you really it’s like a knife in that it’s led knife in the heart through the back especially if it’s someone who loved loves you betrays you and especially if they betray you for your virtues that’s a really nice twist so I believe because I think that people are capable of good that if they know enough about evil that that will straighten them out so but who wants that you know this is one of the things I really like about young he’s often regarded as a New Age thinker that’s wrong he’s no New Age thinker he knew that the the pathway to enlightenment was barred by the necessity of a passage through hell and that no one was going to do that that’s why there isn’t a world full of enlightened people you might say like it was just a matter of doing nice things following your bliss let’s say however you might put it then why wouldn’t everyone walk up the stairway to heaven that isn’t how it works that’s not how it works at all I don’t think you can be convinced of the necessity for moral action until you understand exactly how dark and terrible things can get and that it’s your fault that they’re getting that way who wants to think that so you can think it though but not not without it burning you so thanks so much hello dr. Peterson thank you for coming we all appreciate it a lot I wanted to get your opinion on censorship that we’re seeing on the web it’s accelerating you were a very notable example you were locked out of your Gmail in the entropic account part of me oh yeah Trump just got deleted by an errant person you know now they’re saying that perhaps this was just a contractor and you know maybe someone from Twitter who’s gone in a very far left direction a YouTube has gone in a very far left direction I’m just wondering I’ve started an alternative to youtube called pew tube what kind of what do you see for possible solutions and just here’s it’s a crazy thought but I’m gonna tell it to you anyways so I was just reading one of reycarts Wiles books I think it was called how to make a mind I really liked it actually it helped me understand how the brain compresses information cuz the world’s really complicated a so you have to make a low-resolution representation of it to live in it and he actually explained to me in a way that I hadn’t really understood how the brain might do that neurologically so that was cool but you know kurtzweil is this guy who thinks that he’s a smart guy very smart guy and he’s invented a fair bit of high-end technical technological software and hardware and he’s the guy that thinks that we’re heading towards the singularity and so the singularity is you know how processing speed doubles every 18 months and like hard disk capacity every year and there’s a bunch of doublings going on a huge number of them and they accelerate exponentially and so it’s probably we’re probably three years away maybe even less then from building a computer that has the capacity to make as many calculations as reasonable estimates of the calculating capacity of the human brain are currently set at 18 months away two years away something like that and then we’re eighteen months away from having one that’s twice that fast and then 18 months away from having one that’s twice as fast is that so that’s like say six years and and we’ve got something that’s eight times as smart as human being but there’s a twist on that and this is Kurtz whales twist which is as soon as you make a machine smart enough to make the next machine that’s smarter than it which is sort of what we’re doing because computers are so fast that that will scale up to near infinite commuted computing power almost instantaneously now you think No probably not and Ellen gates partner has written critiques of kurtzweil and you know you might think if something is impossible then it won’t happen even if you don’t know why and there’s reasons to not think that that will happen but Kurzweil is traced to back the doubling of computing power way before the existence of the transistor and it’s been ridiculously stable crazily stable so god only knows what we’re coming up with here you know and you don’t know what something of infinite computing power might be like like you seriously don’t know and there are serious people who are very very very worried about that they’re very worried for example that companies like Facebook and Google will manage that first and you know those companies are already making censorship AI bots and that’s what that’s smart it’s like making really fast robots that can shoot people it’s not that smart and we’re doing that too very rapidly and you know I know some guys who worked in advanced AI and you know how you look you watch the term Terminator movies and you see the robots that miss when they shoot at you like they’re not very bright because the bright ones not only shoot at where you are but they estimate where you’re gonna be when you make your escape moves and they shoot there simultaneously and their death rate is 100% and so there’s no war against the robots I mean when those things get going they’re gonna be so much faster than us that will look like we’re moving through molasses to them so you know so maybe what we’re deciding now with all of our individual decisions about censorship and the way that we’re going to construct the world and all that is exactly what kind of super intelligence we’re going to bring into being and I would suggest that we try to bring one in that’s good and moral rather than one that’s evil and demonic right so what can we do about that the there’s only one answer that as far as I know that works is gay Rock together you’re gonna be the person who’s working in AI right I know some of these people it better be good people because they’re gonna build whatever they’re like into their machines so they better have their heads screwed on straight because they’re going to get amplified like mad and I don’t like what’s happening with Google and Facebook and YouTube they’re building censorship BOTS predicated on a certain kind of ideology the kind of ideology that we outlined today it’s a very bad idea hopefully good people will stop that so then that what that means is that your moral obligation is to be good and the way you do that is first by stopping being bad and everyone can do that a little bit so I hope that’s what everyone does because the consequences of not doing it are not going to be pleasant they never are thank you hi this question is about your biblical lecture series I like that one because it’s about Genesis which is usually ignored as being were this post enlightenment society we don’t need these ancient creation myths and also I thought revelations kind of gets the same treatment as being dismissed because it’s the crazy hallucinogenic trip of some isolated madman in the middle of the Mediterranean mm-hmm so I was wondering if after you’re done with Genesis if you were thinking about doing revelations not without traversing the geography in between okay yeah I want to walk through the whole thing if I can do that before I expire so I mean I’ve read it and thought about it and like it’s such a strange book because it’s really big among the evangelical Republican types and you’d think really that really that’s the book that’s but you rely have you read it it’s it’s it’s a it’s it’s a crazy hallucinogenic trip that’s what revelation is no that’s not to play it down because god only knows about crazy hallucinogenic trips that’s for sure I mean there’s there’s accruing evidence I would say that a tremendous amount of the religious orientation of human beings you know that deep mythological symbolic orientation is in no small part a consequence of humanity’s experimentation with psychedelic substances I think that’s that the evidence for that I think has become virtually overwhelming so anyways I will get there maybe probably not because at the rate I’m going through the first stories it’ll take me forever to get there really but that’s okay so thank you dr. Peterson thank you first of all it’s great pleasure being here it’s awesome to see you live I basically got into your works just earlier this year and I had an original question in but your talk today kind of made me decide to change my mind was can ask do you feel as though would you agree with me in the sentiment that the left is pushed so hard for a total control of our society over the last however many years it’s almost to a point we’re saying 2013 was a different time would you say that because they pushed so hard they’ve created this backlash and the backlash created caused them to backlash back again so they doubled down with their ideology and then they get they lose another argument they lose another ideological war they news lose another me more and they double down again and they double down again and again and they can’t seem to meme they can’t seem to argue they can’t seem they can’t they don’t want to have an intellectual discussion and as an interpretation of what you were saying there is no there’s doesn’t seem to be any any any care of what’s right with them they just want power they just want they just want to win do you would you agree with the sentiment that they’re burning themselves out and creating the mass red pilling of the conservative movement that we see going on would you possibly think that maybe they’ve committed suicide and and talks like this people like yourself ben shapiro and others who talk to people like what the subjects that we do the taboo of nowadays possibly that this this is the answer to defeat the the leftist stranglehold it’s not okay so first of all well first of all the first observation is a really interesting one because you know that things can go out of hand very very rapidly yeah and the reason they do that is because of positive feedback loops know the thing that kurtzweil talks about is a positive feedback loop an intelligent machine makes another intelligent machine that makes another intelligent machine that’s a positive feedback loop and that can spiral upwards out of control very rapidly and that’s what polarization is it’s like I tap you you tap me I slap you you punch me well up it goes well I think that’s partly why in the New Testament for example there’s an injunction that’s turn the other cheek resist not evil why because otherwise you get into a positive feedback loop and then you better look the hell out and things can tilt very very rapidly I mean no you have to do look at what happened in World War one no one expected that it was like one one relatively minor member I think of the aristocracy if I remember correctly was assassinated in one minor little country it’s like bang everything fell apart and that’s positive feedback loops right and so that’s what we’re in right now and we got to be and that’s a really chaotic time and so I would say maintain self-control and don’t aim to win a matte piece because winning that’s that’s not peace it’s better to aim for peace you know I’ve got this tour coming up in November 11th I’m quite worried about it because I know there’s going to be protesters there and that they’ve been emboldened by the fact that they shot the talk down before and I want to make a video I’ll probably do it tomorrow telling everyone that comes to that meeting to like watch their bloody step and stay out of the gutter because you just we’re at we’re at we’re at a point now where under the wrong circumstances if the wrong person does the wrong thing that the consequences will be very grave now we can’t predict which action is going to precipitate that and or even if that will happen but it’s chaotic enough so that it could happen so you know so govern yourselves accordingly now the problem is is that there are people who would be happy if there was blood running in the street they’re the same sort of people that shoot up high schools or kill innocent you know elementary school kids just to show what they’re made of and what they believe and that’s a big problem but for the rest of us like hopefully calmer heads can prevail and so it really is important not to win it’s like fighting with your wife you don’t win you can’t because you have to live with her you can’t win but maybe you can solve the problem and bring about peace and so you gonna practice doing that practice restraint no and remember too that these people that you’re talking about who erotica leftist is most of the time they’re not like they’re 95% like you and if you pull them out of the mob they’re just like your your neighbors nineteen year old kid who’s kind of clueless and rebellious right and who you might even like you put them in the mob it’s a whole different thing and so you got to remember that to out of fear of social isolation no it’s just that they’re possessed by these ideas but but only partially you know you hardly find it full-blooded absolutely committed radical leftist activists you know like there are some but not very many most of it it’s just fragmentary behavior and you have to remember that like when the students come out to protest me there’s a case particularly at McMaster I have to remember these kids they’re not much different than my kids they are when they’re in a stupid mob behind a hammer and sickle flag you know but but but you don’t want to make a low-resolution homogeneous representation of them and so and so you that’s why again I think instead of winning you turn to your own development you turn to your own development you do what you can to stop doing the things that you’re doing that aren’t good because you’re not gonna hurt anybody if you do that all you’re gonna do is help and otherwise you’ll participate in this polarization and that’s unless you want that and you know there’s a dark part of people that it’s part of the part that voted for Trump would like to burn things to the ground it’s like to hell I know well how people felt when they went into the voting booth it was like Hillary Hillary to hell with it Trump you know and that’s a that’s a hell of a thing to say to hell with it you know although I could I could certainly understand that sentiment so we have to be careful and all of you people who are here who are advocates of free speech and who are theoretically happy to come hear me speak it’s like I really do believe it I truly believe this and this is something I learned in part from social Nets and in part from youngest that the way that you set the world straight is by constraining the malevolence in your own heart and that’s no joke man that’s no easy thing and that’s a good voyage for people to go on if they want something difficult and worthwhile to do so thank you very much okay time for pictures so your unless your yours is the last question okay so sorry to everybody else but you’re the last one okay hi dr. Peterson thanks for coming my question is a little bit off-topic from everything else tonight but I really want to hear what you had to say about it I work in Residence Life here at UBC and in the community where I am we were recently affected by a suicide of someone who lived in our community and I was upset about it not just because obviously it’s a horrible thing to have happen but also because res life in the university like they talk all this talk about like self care and your mental health is so important to us but then things like this still happens so I wanted to know like if you think like what do you think the university should be doing to keep stuff like this from happening in the future well it’s not self-evident that it’s the university’s responsibility and the reason for that I’m not saying it isn’t okay I’m saying it’s not self-evident that it is because different institutions can only do so many things you know and we’re already requiring that the universities to educate and to act as substitute parents increasingly and to take on the role of judge jury and executioner as there are more what should be criminal cases being handled within the university say having said that you could ask the broader question is will what do you do to help people be sufficiently in love with life so that they don’t wish to end it no and I’ve tried to puzzle through that for a long time and that’s partly why I’ve written the things that I’ve written it’s partly why I’ve produced the online programs that I’ve produced no and so we know that if you do if you have students do the future authoring program for example they’re much less likely to drop out of university about 30% less likely and their grades go up and that’s especially true if they’re male and marginalized it has a bigger impact on those communities and so you know I’ve tried to get universities interested now the data is there but they’re not and it’s very difficult to get a big bureaucracy to move a like big big is a mobile so I’m not sure there’s anything they can really do about it it’s certainly possible that the things that they’re trying to do about it are making it worse now that’s another thing that you learn if you’re a good social scientist just like there was evidence and I don’t know if this is still the case but but there was good evidence I looked into this about 15 years ago say you want to prevent suicides put a suicide hotline in your town and you advertise it what happens suicide rate goes up because you’re advertising suicide right and lots of lots of interventions are like that it’s really really hard to make things better and it’s really really easy to make them worse and so that’s another problem you get these big bureaucracies let’s say and they’re hypothetically motivated by positive intentions and I would say hypothetically again because it takes an awful lot of work to help someone straight now it’s no joke especially if they’re in real trouble and they put in place these structures that are designed to help but they don’t ever evaluate them and they could easily be making it worse so so I don’t have a straightforward answer to that question I think that well that’s that’s the only answer I have yeah thank you okay yeah so that’s the end of the show if you’re in the first heroes you can stick around and get some pictures otherwise drive safe and yeah [Applause]

  1. Did he say that: People are born racist? Because they aren't. It's a learning thing. It seeps in via the culture and upbringing. It's programmed into the software after release. It's not firmware.

  2. Peterson is great. Its really sad that the Libs / Far Leftists / Socialists / Communists are now placing him on their "naughty" list. Just because he speaks against the stat quo and modern Leftist hive speak, they want to label him far right, "hateful" etc. Now, normally you could say "well who cares what they think? I tend to feel that way myself, but when you're writing books and appearing as a guest speaker, seeing as the left dominate academia and media they can really put a lump in your career.

  3. "things can change rapidly…we at a point now, where under the wrong cirumstances, if the wrong person does the wrong thing, that the consequences will be very grave…" i say, if what dr peterson described becomes reality, then it will be the mainstream media who decided to let it happen. without them, no such thing could ever happen.

  4. The attraction of social construction theories is, I believe, the fact that it provides an easy out for people. There is no absolute positives or nobility or character or achievements or even healthy bodies. There is nothing to strive to become so they can never fall short. There is never any insufficiency or failure…..

  5. I was disappointed when he said he'd only go for 5 more minutes, then extremely happy when I saw the video still had 45 min left

  6. Now, it might be hard to understand how Post-Modenism and Marxism can be the same because one is a rejection of the other. So, it might be hard to get to the bottom of this claim I keep making despite being challenged on it. So, we won't get to the bottom of it.

    People take this guy seriously….

  7. I work in scottsburg Indiana Jeffersonville Indiana. Sheperdsville Kentucky. White privilege mid west and the south. California it’s human privilege. Downey California

  8. Does anyone have concrete evidence of Dr. Peterson’s belief in God? I have listened to lectures where he states that life is more orderly if you live with a belief in a higher power. Another podcast insisted that he doesn’t believe in God. I cannot point to any direct evidence suggesting either belief. Any references are appreciated

  9. Oversocialization and collectivization are the crap we need to prevent. The world has already come along ways…let's not let it go completely down the tubes.

  10. 1:16:42 one of the best things about listening to this man speak is his unusual propensity for casually dropping provocative statements that are serious but are interpreted as jokes by the audience and are only revelatory after the fact…

  11. Can't help thinking JP skirts around which group created and pushes most of this cultural poison and the hatred that motivates them.

  12. Hey, people that ask questions at the end, just ask the fucking question and get on with it. Dont plug you're sight or act like anyone cares about what youre saying…it's pure cringe.

  13. Marxism is like the ring in Lord of the Rings. How it flushes their faces with power. If only they controlled it. It's a good way to re-watch LoTR.

  14. Cool young Marxist hip revolutionaries who idolise Lenin, it’s great how he denounces these people. When I see young marxists like this it makes me sick they know nothing and will destroy the west if we allow their ideology to spread like a disease.

  15. I'm probably, admittedly, being an imperfect cynic to make this statement, but it's what I am I guess. I've never claimed to be otherwise. At any rate I would give this much to the original Marxists over the Postmodernist Neo-Marxists (I actually call them pseudo-Marxists because, as Dr. Peterson made very clear, they actually have contempt for the true Proletariat), but, at least the original Marxists were perceptive enough to realize that you fool the Proletariat into helping you to win the revolution (especially the men who can provide both the labor and the military muscle) and then AFTER the SUCCESS of the revolution, then and only then would you BETRAY them and persecute them, and even then you would not necessarily do it on a large as scale as by their gender. But, the ones today aren't even that perceptive as evidenced by their deliberate attack on men to the point that now we have MGTOW which (no matter what you may think of it in terms of any social consequences of it) at least gives men some amount of personal protection, which the traditionalist model has (judging by the failure of the courts to intervene on a large scale with any degree of justice or even integrity) largely failed to do. So how could these pseudo-Marxists ever hope to win any physical contest for power? I'm sorry but to have a "revolution" which is led by, and mostly consists of women (who aren't even mostly in favor of being subject to conscription or even registering for selective service) they've already lost "that war" anyway. It wouldn't even be any contest at all. It would be total suicide, because, also very foolishly, they have attacked "chivalry" itself and have created a purposefully adversarial relationship between themselves and men. So, if you attack chivalry and at the same time declare war against men, you are creating an environment in which you would be the victims of retaliatory physical violence and would have very few men coming to your assistance. Jacobin guillotines did not practice chivalry nor did Bolshevik firing squads. Why would they be foolish to think that any new regime which WON the military struggle (I would also add that, from what I have seen, most military men are not liberals) would spare them because of their gender? It wouldn't and history proves that. At least that's what I think. But, then again, as you point out, they are not interested in reality, facts, evidence, proof, documentation. science, etc. That is what will ultimately probably destroy them.

  16. Read history like it's about YOU
    FIGHT THE POWER = of Apathy
    I like the fact that he makes me reconsider my opinions…

  17. If i consider protests ,some of the more deadly Weatherman's protests during the Nixon Administration, ttells me Marxists are our politucians, lawmakers, and professors in liberal colleges today. It is my privilege to take what Dr. Peterson is sharing to social media and to my friends. I share the beauty of intelligence and common sence a refreshing promise of hope to me and for our nation. Thank you.
    Not every man ive danced with is coordinated. They get my attention because they try.

  18. Will this man ever stop blowing my mind? I'm seriously wondering…EVERY TIME I listen to him, these pockets of knowledge get filled and then burst; because he keeps packing them to capacity. But then there's more to come!!!!!!! So I need another pocket!

  19. Mr. Peterson I would love for you to give a lecture on racism. In specific Not only the means by which We could move toward solving this issue but the intricate details or actions of the issue involved when dealing with racism. If you have done so I would love to see or be directed to such a video. By the way I love your work.

  20. Haha, I always block videos with the man in it, and after some time they show up again… Jesus, what's wrong with the Yt algorithm??

  21. Does someone know which Nietsche's work is the citation Peterson makes at 1:04:10 ?
    I am trying to find it, but no clue.

  22. Undoubtedly whit privilege used to be a prominent in the past with segregation, slavery etc. Now it's a thing of the past and should be treated as such. Marxism is a fallacious and childish as hell philosophy predicated on the 5 year old's "it's not fair" complaint to their parents. "Well life an't fair kid and the sooner you accept that, the better equipped you will be to handle reality." Besides, who's going to make sure that it's fair?!! That person who who is tasked to do so, by definition makes things unfair.That's why every implementation of communism has always been a sh!t hole.

  23. “White Supremacy” is a code name for the sovereign personhood of the individual sovereign person whose conscience (See: Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptist Church emphasizing man’s conscience in the all matters as primary in matters of government; that is secular. In the Church man must submit his conscience to follow Christ) must determine his virtues of charity in generosity notwithstanding the joy of giving and the individual’s joy of receiving and all other virtues including chastity.

    To eradicate Supremacy from the White Man is to obliterate he image of the Supreme Sovereign Being in man and denigrate mankind to a beast of burden to the state. In the words of Jordan Peterson: “Who will make that judgment? The worst person”

  24. We also don't know, and can't possibly know, if other creatures don't have inner self images or some of these other concepts. There is data on some species that they might have quite a few of these inner concepts. Wrong pressuposition.

  25. I had a therapist I was seeing tell me I didn't have the right to feel bad because I had white privilege.

  26. Jordan B. Peterson is one of the greatest thinkers of our time, maybe in history. His insight, passion and ability to articulate the things many of us fall short with is hard to accept as being real. Thank you JBP. Words cant explain how happy I am to be alive during your own lifetime

  27. Good afternoon everyone, this is the security guard imposter.. Hope everyone is being culturally sensitive. Gotta keep my comment section clean. You know the deal. 👮🏻‍♂️

  28. There certainly is "white privilege" in the USA! It simply means that white people in the USA don't have to face the same continuing race based disfavored treatment that has been imposed on Black Americans!

  29. The LEFT is SO DESTRUCTIVE… yet they claim the exact opposite and control the narrative. We need to eradicate these bastards, especially the Hitlery Mafia who tried to impose their tyrannical POWER in 2016… continuing via the "Mueller Report" and the House machinations via Nadler and Shifty Schiff.

  30. I’m a women with a wonderful father and husband. They do there part everyday to give me the choice to be a great mother. It has never been oppressive and it makes me sick that women would have us believe all men are oppressive to women. My mother also runs a buisness my father helped her start when I was in college. Life is working together with support and respect.

  31. I can’t say enough how much wisdom is in this video! Thank you Dr. Peterson! Thank you for speaking the truth as best you can!

  32. If you ask question that confuses Dr. Peterson, it's not because you are.smarter than him or that he is incompetent… It's because your question is either incredibly irrelevant or it's just a stupid question that no sane person would even regard.

  33. You're an incredible thinker. Also, just like any thoroughly crafted argument, I will examine and learn from it using critical thinking (asking mostly internal questions about your arguments and how to apply them) and intersectionality – by that I mean understanding there a variety of contexts where this argument can apply and relate to. So I'll try your ideas on for size and see if they really work! Thank you… sincerely.

  34. 1:12:47 "All right, so that's Marxism." No, that's Leninism, Stalinism, Maoism, authoritarianism, etc. Real Marxism has never been tried.

  35. 1:25:56 "And the difference between an ideologue and and a thinker is that a thinker knows the difference between things that are only partly true and things that are completely true." Indeed.

  36. 1:34:23 "I'm against torture." It would be nice if this actually were universal, or even widely accepted in America.

  37. Computing progress has stagnated since the mid 2010s, maybe even earlier. Even if processing power did continue to double every 18 months, that simply means how quickly they can make calculations. It doesn't make them smarter per se. We still have to write code that tells them what to do in any given situation. We still have to figure out the algorithms to make them smarter. Also you have to think about what really constitutes AI? Because it's not adaptive algorithms. AI isn't figuring out where you're gonna go next based on data. AI is a machine being able to learn something without us coding the information in. True AI would be a computer being able to conduct it's own research. AI assumes that at the start, the machine basically knows nothing, and has to learn. Packing a computer full of things humans have figured out and using the crazy fast processing speeds to make calculations (from data/algorithms that WE learned) that would take us much longer, and follow pre-defined algorithms based on the results, is not AI. It's just plain old programming.

  38. It's not surprising how Jordan Peterson tends to drift more and more towards crude theories and far-right populist slogans during the length of his pseudo-scientific lectures. You know: left-liberal mainstream, left-wing extremist political conspiracy, the marxist or post-modern hijacking of science, the evil media and similar nonsense.

    However, I find it astonishing how Peterson feels called on to fight against a supposed leftist monopoly of opinions. Although this is quite obviously pure nonsense. But this is a popular attitude today. Rebellion as a fight against the establishment has today been completely captured by the Right. It's really a phenomenon. The New Right currently seems to symbolize the new anti-position, the modern rebellion, the cool underground culture. A look into the shady worlds of the social media is enough, where platforms such as Youtube or Instagram offer a stage for a new subculture of people between the ages of 14 and 18 and for their crude, right-wing theories, including disgusting fascistoid fantasies. Absurdly, these people actually seem to suffer from a collective martyr syndrome. All are against them, they say. Above all, of course, the "Media". They pretend to rebel against the establishment. Yet they are not real rebels, because all of them mourn only a fictitious yesterday. And Jordan Peterson is clearly their celebrated star, a kind of guru of these far-right extremists, a godlike figure for the Alt-Right Movement.

    Last but not least I find it absolutely frightening how unreflected and unfiltered some people adopt the worldview of their guru Jordan Peterson. His fans jump at all the critics of their idol like starved bloodhounds. They don't tolerate any contradiction. Independent thinking of course falls flat. They simply believe everything this apologist of new conservatism says, everything this blue-eyed-boy of the far-right movement preaches. No matter how obvious the lack of consistency in his lecturing is. And believe me, the inconsistency of this man is really an embarrassment. But well then, all I can say is: have fun with your opinion leader! May he provide you with all the answers in life!

  39. 31:10 Beginning of theory of suffering in Judeo-Christian context. This is everything we wanted to hear in high school Christology class.

  40. I am Latino living a predominant white neighborhood, privilege is not something minorities claim but what whites believe they should act like. I got nice respectful neighbors but ones racist too. If you educate well with honesty and truth we all win.

  41. In Minneapolis the police appointed a policeman from the Muslim world to the force. Within about a year he killed a woman who called up for police protection. This is sort of like the example Jordan Peterson used, except that in the West the police cannot be trusted to protect citizens. It shows what can happen when you bring people from primitive cultures into the West.

  42. I think the Simpsons also satirize Democrats. Mayor Quimby is a satire of the Kennedies with the New England accent, affairs with women, etc.

  43. Just came here to get my mind blown and get more than 4 years of college would hand you.. not that a degree isn’t worth the effort but Jordan is a man among himself.

  44. It seems like privilege is an accepted part of many societies. All the Muslim majority countries impose Muslim privilege. That is how they forced out the previous culture, language, religion and society of these countries. South Africa has imposed black privilege to drive out the Boer farmers from farms they built over 400 years. In China there is Chinese privilege. They are imposing this in minority cultures such as Tibet. If there is white privilege in America, how did Obama get elected? How do black athletes and entertainers become very rich? How do people get affirmative action advantages? How do illegal aliens get all sorts of privileges from the left? How is it that Christianity is being suppressed while Islam is being furthered in the public, government, schools? Is that white privilege or Muslim privilege?

  45. the story of Adam a d Eve was a little stupid childish story to me…now I learn its a complex and fascinating story

  46. Ironically, the motive behind Marxism is neither love for the poor nor hatred of the rich.

    The motivation behind Marxism is to create a society in which a tiny elite controls ALL resources for their own benefit, while appearing to just be there to serve the masses, directing them to kill everyone who questions their rule by pretending THEY are the cause of the misery created by taking all resources from the people.

    In short:
    Marxism is ALL about centralization of property and resources in the hands of those who least deserve them.

  47. Socialism and communism are little more than a desire to see others suffer as I suffer. It is not driven by a desire to improve the lives of the poor but rather it is driven by a desire to see those who have succeeded experience the failure I am so familiar with. It is the desire of Cain to destroy Abel, to punish him for his success. I cannot accept that I have failed, those who have succeeded must have cheated, and for that they must pay. I'm willing to murder those who have succeeded in order to avoid accepting my own failures, as I can blame my failures on those who succeed and not my own mistakes and poor decisions, because I "deserve" much, yet have little. Socialism is what comes about when there is no character, when there is no sense of personal responsibility. Socialism rises when judeochristian ethics fall.

  48. His description of diversity in groups vs individuals was incredibly enlightening and it makes perfect sense. People need to listen to this.

  49. I don't like the way he rambles. He uses many words but says very little. Who are the people who are against skillfulness and confidence? I think it would be helpful that he recognize that, even though the western society has succeeded in many ways, it is not perfect. There is room for improvement. And I don't like when people quote the bible then call it a myth. Not only did he call it a myth he made assumptions that are very wrong. I agree with the idea that people need to take personal responsibility. The only political system that will really provide the best quality of life for all the people of the world is God's Kingdom.

  50. How does owning privilege looks like: 1. You define all the symbols and meanings what are on the table (Do Straight white males control the maps of meaning? – NO!) 2. Whenever your symbol is challenged, you can challenge the critique back without backlash (Can straight white males critique anything without facing racebate? – NO!) 3. You segregate people into privileged and non-privileged people and gatekeep to ensure nobody gets on the wrong side of the wall. (Can straight white males do that literally anywhere anyhow? – NO!) 4. Challenging rally's would be against the law (Can ANTIFA; SJW; LGBT have rallies? – YES!!) How do Straight white males own privilege then??

  51. I live in the next small town over from Wigan, it's a better now but what we're told is the average wage in Britain is something we can't imagine! Are Doctors are India are Veterinarian are Spanish, Teachers are usually from down south. I'm not racist are Doctors and such are a God send! London does not seem to like us, I don't understand it, apart from Thatcher dismantled the North and Wales because are fathers went on Strike and embarrassed her. Love your lecturers thanks.

  52. ALWAYS! all the terms for Post Modernism, Marxism etc…, no matter how you may change the labels, in order to relabel and ever so meekly soften the verbage and is shuffled it about! It has BEEN PROVEN that all of it is for RAW POWER! So you have to ask yourself, do I know enough to destroy this system in order to REUSE already provenly failed, to a murderous degree any of the systems under those labels! YOU DO NOT! For you are not well versed in the concept of THE INDIVIDUAL and its soveriegnty! We have never FORCED our Government to live up to the very words of our most cherished documents to this effect! SO, would it not be logical to do so!? YES IT WOULD BE! For no other system has brought to the populations this amount of wealth in all the history of our planet! So I charge you all with the study of The Natural Rights and The Constitution, The Preamble, The Declaration of Independence! Then study of the fact that the LAW structure now is infiltrated and subverted towards ownership laws of marittime laws and codes, that is upside down from its true structure! We the people need to be active in our Governance NOT BEHOLDEN TO IT!

  53. I just do not understand how we allowed these universities in the west to become communist indoctrination centers.

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