The Good. The Bad. The Asinine.

Jordan Peterson – The World’s Most Popular Halfwit

jordan peterson

I know I’m going to cop a lot of flack for this one. Jordan Peterson is much loved as an inspirational figure, a voice of reason and morality in a crazy world of hyper-liberal relativism, a light in the darkness of a post-feminist, post-structural, post-everything-good world. The thing is, I get it. I have no intention of hitting the same old tired tropes of most Peterson critics – his unintelligible Jung and Hegel derived flights of rhetoric, the fact of his worldview being actually and technically fascist, his apparent (but almost certainly nonexistent) misogyny, his rarely acknowledged political funding sources, his severe logical deficits and habit of eliding definition resistant generalities into chains of reasoning which are invalid in all possible universes. None of these things really matter when it comes to him or his followers because nobody who is actually a philosopher can accept him as one, and nobody, therefore, who thinks of him as one, tends to forensically examine his arguments, such as they are. In the same way that the Sermon on the Mount, taken from a certain point of view, doesn’t make a lick of sense, Peterson’s pronouncements are not, as far as I can tell, valued because they make sense or are specific, but because they don’t and are not.

What Peterson is primarily selling is a feeling. It’s very easy when looking out at the world, especially if one’s lens on that world is the internet, to get the feeling that masculinity is, in fact, in crisis. An entire generation weeping over puppy dogs and irrelevant causes, drowning in political correctness, and in headlong flight from tried and tested values like masculine pride, personal responsibility, and freedom of speech. Peterson’s clear and apparently sincere indignation at these regressive tendencies has an appeal which is very easy to understand, and his habit of reducing the solutions to these problems to simple, self-help style commandments makes for compelling stuff. Follow the twelve simple rules, and you can immediately cast yourself as a warrior for freedom, an island of sanity in an insane world. And when it comes to things like taking personal responsibility for one’s failings and actions, keeping one’s space and oneself neat and tidy as a nod to both universal order and self respect, parsing all politics through an aggressive dialectic and forensic lens, I find myself in complete agreement with the man. All of these things are vitally important. As important as it is to be proud of one’s manhood, in whatever form it is expressed, to set boundaries and draw lines around tolerance, to avoid at all costs pandering to pity and outrage merchants, or to the blind knee-jerk advocacy of partisan causes. I more than agree with all this stuff. In fact, I actively proselytise it. The problem with Peterson does not lie in this side of things in which, as a clinical psych, we’d sort of expect him to be rock solid. Where there is a massive problem is in the elision of this very sensible thinking with a world view which is not just parochially narrow, but actually crazy.

It should be freely acknowledged that the regressive left is a problem. In the rarefied atmosphere of some university campuses, and in quite a bit of the feminist and LGBTQI press, a certain kind of victim rage insanity festers and spits at the rest of the world and, because media largely trades in emotions like outrage and shock, gets wildly disproportionate and unrepresentative airplay. It should also be acknowledged that Canadian universities seem to have a particularly bad time with these idiots, with faculty losing their jobs on political grounds, blatant propagandising, and the espousal of frankly loopy positions. I would point out, though, that Peterson’s own dismissal appears to have been the simple result of a refusal to follow a reasonable instruction from his employer. But that’s by the by – and highly arguable – my point here is that when we look at the environment from which he’s come, it’s very easy to identify the dragon which he wishes to slay. But Canadian higher education – Canada in general, to be brutally honest – is not even close to being the whole world. What we see from Peterson, however, is a classic narrative of threat which seems to be predicated on the opposite assumption. It never ceases to amaze me how people who can be cynical about the manufactured threat narratives of global terrorism, Macarthyism, AI alarmism, and so on, can so utterly fail to see that the exact same methodology is at work in Peterson’s message.

Let’s take a look at some of his more classic statements in order to explain what I mean here. “For thirty years now, nobody – at least nobody who is on their side – has been talking to kids about responsibility.” What in the name of sanity does this statement actually mean? Parse it as closely as possible, sieve it for nuance, make all possible allowances, and all we can really get from this statement is that the world is going to pot because this new generation hasn’t been brought up properly. Leaving aside problems such as the appallingly invalid assumption that every young person across the globe is in the same boat, or the galling refusal of the speaker to provide even a working definition of ‘responsibility’, it should be pretty obvious to anyone not blinded by love or ‘me-too-ism’ that this is a sentiment (and I use that word advisedly) which can be found in the writings of cranky old men from 2000BCE to the present day. Or let’s take this doozy: “Medical science isn’t about welfare, it’s about science.” Well, yes, if you’re willing to suspend the three seconds of thought it takes to arrive at the conclusion that medical science is, in fact, one branch of the entire medical endeavour which, for the entirety of civilisation, has been about the welfare of individuals and groups, among other things. Or the nanosecond of thought required to understand that something as huge as all of medical science cannot possibly be summed up in a fortune cookie bon mot. But that’s the thing with Peterson. It’s not about logic, or fine points like parsing the actual meanings of statements. No, what it’s about is furious and indignant agreement – an extrapolation of personal responses to our own ant’s-eye views of the world into global positions predicated on the basis of ‘stuff was better when I was a kid’ and ‘I’m disturbed by what I’m seeing’.

I honestly think that the vast majority of Peterson supporters are intelligent, decent people. I also suspect that almost all of them engage with his actual content at the same level most people do with the law. They think it’s a very good thing, will fight vigorously to defend it, and, for the vast majority, have never actually read a word of it. I read the pieces which attack Peterson, and by no means are all of these from the left wing press. The majority of articles I’ve read have been from faculties of philosophy, political science, and, weirdly, international relations. They come from a broad spectrum of people from left and right of centre (I’m sorry – I really can’t be bothered with the extreme ends of the spectrum, so don’t know what they have to say about him) – and uniformly express utter disbelief at just how childishly simple it is to spot that his entire body of work is deeply irrational and founded on reasoning so invalid it isn’t actually reasoning. And that’s the biggest problem – Peterson’s framework does not stand up to even the most cursory rational examination, sure, but for as long as he so effectively touches the right emotional chords in his audience, they’re never going to subject him to it. And given that he seems to be genuinely half-witted enough to believe that his ramblings are actually cogent chains of ratiocination, he’s going to be imbued with the kind of Messianic sincerity which practically guarantees this result indefinitely.

Miranda Devine is a fücking idiot

Well, she is. But don’t worry – I’m not being Mirandaphobic, because “fücking idiot” doesn’t mean what you think it means.

You see, a few weeks ago, a rugby league player called one of his opponents a “fücking gay cünt”. The NRL then suspended him for lack of creativity homophobia. Miranda was outraged:

There was no problem with the players trying to punch each other. No problem with the foul language. No problem with the sexist c-word. But woe betide the player who ­offends the gods of homosexuality. Let’s get one thing straight. “Gay” no longer just means “homosexual”. The word has changed meaning over the last decade. Young people use “gay” to mean lame, or dumb or stupid, as in: “That’s so gay.”

I don’t know who the “god of homosexuality” is, but I think it might be Jesus, since he not only seems to be the one making all the gay people, but can rock a tunic and sandals like nobody’s business. In any case, it would seem that according to Miranda:

  1. Yes, “gay” does mean homosexual; but
  2. It also means “stupid”; so
  3. It’s not homophobic.
  4. P.S. Calling someone a “cünt” is sexist.

That’s all fine, but how does it make Miranda Devine a fücking idiot? Well, to make things easier for us, Miranda claimed that calling someone a “cünt” is sexist. And that allows us to say this:

  1. Yes, “cünt” does mean vagina; but
  2. It also means “fückwit”; so
  3. It’s not sexist.
  4. P.S. Calling someone “gay” is homophobic.

Ergo, Miranda Devine is a fücking idiot.

Now, at this point, you may be thinking that I’m being Mirandaphobic. But you’d be wrong. You see, dear reader, words can change their meaning over time. And since I started this post, “fücking idiot” no longer just means “a person of colossal stupidity” – it now also means “a person of Devine-like intelligence, capable of both making an argument and defeating it in the same paragraph”.

Which means I’m off the hook.

But she’s still a fücking idiot.

On political correctness

I hate “political correctness”. Even the name, “political correctness”, is politically correct. We should just call it what it actually is – lying.

You see, words are important. How could I write these words and how could you read these words if words didn’t exist? You couldn’t, because neither of us would know what words were, because words would be non-existent. And non-existent things don’t exist. So, yeah, it’s pretty good that words exist.

But while the existence of words is important, the meaning of the words is also important. Actually, the meaning could be even more important than the existence. But I haven’t thought about it a lot, so I’ll just say they’re equally important, and call it a tie. Not one of those ties that you wear around your neck, obviously, because that makes no sense. Maybe I’ll call it a draw instead. A draw is like a tie. But not one of the ones you wear around your neck, obviously. See what I mean? The meaning of words is important. Things can get very confusing if you’re not clear on the meanings of words. That’s why I always use the right words for things.

Why can’t people be like me, and just say what they mean? I just want to call a spade a spade, and so should you, unless you’ve named your spade “John”, in which case you may call it “John”, although I should tell you that “Doug” is a much better name for a shovel. But whatever. The way you people dance around the truth with your silly euphemisms is just ridiculous. I think it’s time we all started being a little bit more honest.

Like when I see a woman feeding her child in public, I say “Would you mind tït-feeding that human parasite someplace else?” Imagine the confusion if I said “breastfeeding”, or “baby”. She might have thought I was asking her to stop feeding chicken to the girl from Dirty Dancing, and then she’d be confused, and I’d still be grossed out by her selfish act of infant nourishment. That’s what we call a lose-lose situation. And I much prefer win-win situations. Or win-lose situations, where I’m the winner, and you’re the loser.

And for god’s sake, don’t say “vision-impaired”, “intellectually-challenged” or “executive assistant”. Just say “blind”, “spastic” or “secretary”. Because that’s what they are. Likewise, don’t tell your wife you want to “make love”. Love isn’t made of anything, so it’s impossible to make it. Fücking isn’t impossible though, so do that instead. And don’t tell your colleagues you’re “going to the bathroom”. Not only is there almost certainly no bath at your work, but everyone knows what you’re really saying, so you might as well just say it: “I’m going to the shïtter to play Angry Turds.” Don’t say “I’m sorry for the loss of your mother”. They haven’t lost her, she’s inside that coffin over there, with a scarf covering her tracheotomy, slowly decomposing. Don’t ask your seven-year old daughter “Is it itchy down there?” Just tell her to stop scratching her cünt. Don’t say “gender-neutral”. Say “freak”. Don’t say “African-American”, “Japanese” or “Jew”. Say “nigger”, “nip” or “kyke”. And FFS, don’t say “gay”. Gay means happy. And yes, they all usually look quite happy. I can be happy too, but I’m not a faggot.

And if you happen to be at a funeral for a vision-impaired, intellectually-challenged, transgender, homosexual African-American executive assistant who died from smoking-induced lung cancer, and you get the urge to make love to yourself in the bathroom, just be honest and say “Well I guess that blind spastic freakish gay nigger secretary got what it deserved. I’m going to go fück myself in the pïsser.”

Sure, you might upset a few of the funeral-goers, but that’s their problem. You’re just telling the truth, and protecting your right to free speech.

And as an added bonus, I’m sure they’ll be happy to tell you to go fück yourself.

Found in translation

Oh Holger, you didn’t. Please tell me you didn’t say that “women should shut up in public”.

Because that’s what the Herald Sun, The Age, The Gaurdian, The Daily Mail and the ABC are saying you said. And, oh dear, I just checked YouTube, and it’s on there too, for all to see. “You push me around like my wife”, you said. “Women should shut up in public”, you said. What do you have to say for yourself?

You thought you were off the record? Come on Holger, you’ve been playing the press game long enough to know that nothing’s really off the record, especially when you have about 20 microphones in your face and you say something stupid.

Oh hang on, it was only a joke? A private joke between you and your wife? Well, sorry Holger, but just because you and your wife think it’s funny, it doesn’t mean the rest of us have to.

Wait, wait, what was that? What you actually said was “Mulieres taceres in ecclesia”? Haha, nice try Holger, but saying “Women should shut up in public” in Latin doesn’t make it sound any better. In French, maybe… but definitely not Latin.

Ahhhh, I see now. You were just quoting the Bible. 1 Corinthians 14:35, to be exact.

Well that can’t possibly be sexist. Carry on.
__________

Spotted by the eagle-eared Martin from Furious Purpose.

Well of course she was asking for it

Well, she was. What did she expect? Out late at night, putting herself in that position, dressed the way she was, what was I supposed to do?

I’m talking, of course, about the young woman I just ran over with my car. Now I know what you’re thinking, and believe me, I understand how you feel. I had the same thought when I first saw her. Running people over is generally considered to be a bit mean, and I have a big four wheel drive with a kick arse bull bar, and I knew it wasn’t exactly going to tickle if I ploughed right through her. She’d probably suffer lasting physical and emotional damage. She could even die.

So yes, I understand that you think running her over wasn’t the right thing to do. But hear me out.

It was late at night, as I said, and it was in a bit of a dodgy neighbourhood, so there were no streetlights. But on top of all that, she was also wearing dark clothes! How dumb can you get? She must have known that if she dressed like a ninja, and then crossed a dark street late at night, there was a good chance she would get hit by a car. What was she thinking?

Now if you think that’s bad, wait till you hear this. Despite all of that, I still managed to see her in the middle of the road. I am, after all, an excellent driver. My dad even lets me drive on the driveway. So yeah, I saw her. And yeah, I could have stopped, or beeped my horn to warn her. But you won’t believe what happened next. I looked up, and saw that she was crossing the street while the little man was red!

Can you believe it? No don’t worry, I couldn’t either.

So I stomped on the gas and ran that bitch over.

It’s what any nice, normal young man from a good family would do.

Submission impossible

The scene: Joe and Mary want to get married. Unaware of Sydney Anglicans’ new marriage vows, they approach their local Anglican priest to enquire about using his church for the ceremony…
___

Joe: Hi there. I’m Joe, and this is my fiance, Mary. We were wondering if we could talk to you about getting married in your church.

Priest: Hi Joe! Come in, please. Will Mary be waiting outside?

Joe: Excuse me?

Priest: Oh, you’re one of those. Fine, fine. Come in, please.

Joe: Thank you.

Priest: So, you want to be married in my church?

Joe: Yes, if that’s possible.

Priest: Shouldn’t be a problem. You’re both Christian, I hope?

Mary: Yes, we are.

Priest: Good, good. And I assume you know what will be expected of you, as soon-to-be-married Christians?

Joe: I think so. We should at all times be to each other what Christ was to his followers.

Priest: And that was…?

Mary: Respectful, loving, forgiving —

Priest: Goodness gracious! Where on earth did you hear that?

Mary: Oh, I thought the bible —

Priest: Haha, poor little thing. That’s not what the bible says at all… Your husband is your master!

Joe: That doesn’t sound right…

Priest: I can see how you might have missed it. I mean, it’s only in the first frikken book. “And the Lord God said to Adam, It is not good that you should be alone; I will make an help meet for you.”

Mary: An help meet?

Priest: Well, OK, the wording is a little silly. But there’s more, Mary! “Thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee”. See? You have to find him sexy, and he gets to boss you around.

Mary: Oh… It really says that?

Priest: And more! This is the best bit. Adam wasn’t punished for eating the fruit, he was punished because he listened to his wife! “Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, cursed is the ground for thy sake”.

Mary: Well, maybe, but that’s just a story, isn’t it…

Priest: Don’t be so worried! Submission isn’t a bad thing, Mary. It’s like dancing. The man always leads, right?

Mary: I guess so… but a dance doesn’t last 50 years, does it?

Priest: OK, OK. Bad example. Think of it more like an altar boy submitting to his priest.

Joe: Well that doesn’t sound so bad. Right, honey?

Mary: Yeah, that does sound better!

Priest: So, we’re all on board?

Joe and Mary: Yep!

Priest: That’s great news! It’s great being Christian, isn’t it? Imagine being one of those damned Muslims. The way they treat their women. Disgraceful…

Until death do us part… and that’s when the fun starts

Most husbands are sad when their wives die. But apparently Egyptian Muslims just get horny. Which perhaps explains all the loose fitting attire at funerals.

Thankfully, the Egyptian parliament is going to do something about it. They’re going to legalise dead sex with your ex. Well, for the first six hours after death anyway. Any longer would be weird.

Now I don’t know about you, but I found this a little wacky at first. Why on earth would anyone want to have sex with their dead wife so soon after she died? But after thinking it through, I think they may be on to something:

Game on
One thing that’s always bugged me about sex is that women sometimes don’t want it. Not a problem when they’re dead. Just go up to your wife and say “Hands up who doesn’t want to have sex with me?”. Just make sure your other wives aren’t in the room. They’ll probably raise their hands, and that might kill your buzz.

Silence is golden
The other thing that annoys me about sex is that even when they’re up for it, they want it to be fun for them too. Finally, you can have sex in peace, with no more of the incessant “a little higher”, or “a little lower”, or – the worst – “is it my turn to come yet?”

Egypt is hot, dead bodies are not
Let’s face it – Egypt is pretty hot. So imagine how refreshing it would be to have your wife die, clear your head with a quick run to the pyramids, and then be home just in time for a nice, cooling, sex session with a former human.

One final thing…
I’m a misogynistic arsehole who thinks women are nothing more than two fun bags and a hole. Two holes if it’s my birthday.