Friday, 10 August 2018

Question of the Day: "There are plenty of reasons to dislike Jordan Peterson, but no coherent reason for the left’s obliterating and irrational hatred of Jordan Peterson. What, then, accounts for it?"

"The young men voted for Hillary, they called home in shock when Trump won, they talked about flipping the House, and they followed Peterson to other podcasts—to Sam Harris and Dave Rubin and Joe Rogan. What they were getting from these lectures and discussions, often lengthy and often on arcane subjects, was perhaps the only sustained argument against identity politics they had heard in their lives.
    "That might seem like a small thing, but it’s not. With identity politics off the table, it was possible to talk about all kinds of things—religion, philosophy, history, myth—in a different way. They could have a direct experience with ideas, not one mediated by ideology. All of these young people, without quite realising it, were joining a huge group of American college students who were pursuing a parallel curriculum, right under the noses of the people who were delivering their official educations...
    "This book was putting words to deeply held feelings that many of them had not been able to express before...
    "There are plenty of reasons for individual readers to dislike Jordan Peterson ... many legitimate reasons to disagree with him on a number of subjects, and many people of good will do. But there is no coherent reason for the left’s obliterating and irrational hatred of Jordan Peterson. What, then, accounts for it?
    "It is because the left, while it currently seems ascendant in our houses of culture and art, has in fact entered its decadent late phase, and it is deeply vulnerable. The left is afraid not of Peterson, but of the ideas he promotes, which are completely inconsistent with identity politics of any kind....
    "All across the [US], there are people as repelled by the current White House as they are by the countless and increasingly baroque expressions of identity politics that dominate so much of the culture. These are people who aren’t looking for an ideology; they are looking for ideas. And many of them are getting much better at discerning the good from the bad."

~ From the Atlantic article 'Why the Left Is So Afraid of Jordan Peterson'
[Hat tip Stephen Hicks]

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