What should I ask Jordan Peterson?

I’ll be doing a Conversation with him, though with no associated public event.  So what should I ask?

Comments

I'm thinking of launching a neomarxist breakfast cereal. Is he in?

Peterson Pops? Crunchy Jordanola?

How about this?

Given that cultural marxism has been proven by Vox to only exist in Peterson's mind, shouldn't he admit he's a fraud now?

Also, I read in the ever credible NYTimes Style section that Peterson believes in forcing women to be monogamous aka marriage slavery. Does he still believe in Saudi Arabia style male guardianship or what?

This anonymous is good.

I will give the podcast a chance. Good luck!

The links...

"Style section" was a cute giveaway as well.

Awesome post.

Anonamouse is at it again.

"Also, I read in the ever credible NYTimes Style section that Peterson believes in forcing women to be monogamous aka marriage slavery."

To call that a misrepresentation would be a gross understatement. In fact, it's a bald faced lie.

He was talking about the problems associated with large populations of unmarried men. The cultural norm of monogamy and women focused on child rearing led to a more stable society. Societies that practice tournament mating tend to be violent or require violence and repression (like Saudi Arabia) to maitain the peace. He never said women should be forced into monogamous marriages.

And don't hide behind your claim that you read that in the NYT. You just want to smear the guy.

You are a little mouse.

Did you click on the evidence linked ?

The link points to a silly YouTube video.

However, I don't need a link, I have seen and heard him talk about this issue. Sadly, in the current culture wars, many don't care about the truth, they care about winning.

Pretty sure it was sarcasm.

You got rick rolled

"The link points to a silly YouTube video."

The silly video is a famous internet meme. The post was definitely sarcasm.

He suggested the remedy “mandatory monogamy” in conversation with Joe Rogan, who immediately but rather casually asked “wouldn’t that be cultural Marxism, enforcing equal outcomes?” Doc Lobster was at a loss, said “ oh yeah maybe I should think more about that”.
C’mon, the guy’s an obvious grifter. What in earth is wrong with you people?

Please ask him if he would create transcripts of his videos. I typically am on the computer in my living room with the TV on and people sitting watching TV. Besides I can read faster than I can listen to and watch a video.

Hopefully with the “likes” edited out.

I think Peterson acolytes that drop Piaget and Jung as annoying as leftists that drop Lacan and Foucault. Possibly more so since Youtube is littered with these half-baked "thinkers".

This.

Sissy Graydon Carter of failing Vanity Fair Magazine and owner of bad food restaurants has a problem-his V.F. Oscar party is no longer "hot"

What evidence can falsify Jung, or Jungian theories?

What role does exercise, weight lifting, or other forms of physical activity have in his view of the good life?

I bought an ez-bar and some plates, and did four sets of curls. It was amazing. I felt like a monster, and all the ladies smiled at me. Based on this, I think we have our answer.

Ask him “where’s the beef?”

Ask him how the lawsuit he filed against Wilfrid Laurier and Kate Manne is going and how that sends a chilling anti free speech message that Peterson cannot be criticized.

What are the most important things Nietzsche can teach us today?

Nietzsche predicted that his books would not be studied seriously until the 21st century. I am delighted to see JP helping this prediction come true. As far as Nietzsche's views on education are concerned, which was a topic of profound and passionate interest to him as a professor, my favorite quote is, "One repays a teacher badly if one always remains a student." Nietzsche viewed life as a state of continual self-discovery and self-mastery. A professor of philosophy from the University of Massachusetts recently published a remarkable book entitle *Hiking With Nietzsche.* I highly recommend the book and wonder if JP has read it? https://www.amazon.com/Hiking-Nietzsche-Becoming-Who-You/dp/0374170010/ref=asc_df_0374170010/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312025908234&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=6967079138716670641&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1014069&hvtargid=aud-466346483690:pla-527260232593&psc=1

Ask him to respond to Agnes Callard's comment from your conversation with her:

"Peterson is pulling against certain cultural trends, and his morals are very good in that context. They pull you away when the culture is pulling you too much in one direction. He pulls you in the other direction. That’s sort of the work that he’s doing. That’s really valuable, but in another culture, it would be really pernicious because he’s not giving you the whole story. He’s only giving a part of the story, so that’s how I experience him."

i bet she is very troubled when people at the beach are urged to put on sunscreen. because if they were watching movies at home, the sunscreen suggestion would be really bad advice.

LOL.

I think she's right. The fact that he doesn't seem to seriously acknowledge that sometimes there is, or has been, collective oppression based on 'identity' undercuts his message.

His original studies and first book were on exactly that topic.. not sure if you're joking or unaware. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maps_of_Meaning

Nick Gillespie had a nice defense of postmodernism a couple months ago: “Libertarian Postmodernism—A Reply to Jordan Peterson and the Intellectual Dark Web.” I’d be interested to know if he has a response.

This is probably discussed in the article mentioned here, but you should ask him about postmodernism power dynamics and the state. It seems to me that negative power structures described by postmodernists easily apply to states of all kinds. Yet, JP seems to support Western democracies and a fairly large role for government in peoples' lives. These two things seem in conflict to me.

Further to this, he describes himself as a classic liberal, yet seems to support a large role for government. Also, using postmodern power/structural analysis (which he despises) would seem to call for very limited or no government in certain interpretations - which is what a classic liberal should want.

Nick Gillespie? You mean the free-market Fonzie guy?

I look forward to reading/listening to this Conversation.

Me as well.

How does his tendency towards depression color his internal optimism vs pessimism calculation?

He sees modern identity politics as the road to the gulag. I see the logic, but cannot make the leap.

"He sees modern identity politics as the road to the gulag. I see the logic, but cannot make the leap."

I agree. I see modern identity politics becoming at most a kind of new societal paradigm similar to the Victorian England social restrictions or perhaps more optimistically the US Eisenhower period.

After all both those periods were relatively enlightened and prosperous. Out groups were tolerated as long as they were publicly subordinated.

In justifying the ways of God to man, why don't you emphasize love, as it is the core message of Christianity?

Though I appreciate the Genesis lectures as his best work, I want him to talk more on the Gospels. The little he said on the story of Christ has been valuable to me, and it's at the center of the Christian narrative.

Tyler, ask Jordan about Jesus.

He said in one of his lectures that he has no special insight into the veracity of religious claims so he would rather focus on where he has expertise, the development of human psychology.

Awesome, I really like JP. How about asking him about immigration? How does he see the current push-back against it and whether this is a temporary trend or something bigger?

Maybe a broader discussion on how humanity can solve the problem of culture integration - he said Canadian government is following multiculturalism but has no way to resolve cultural clash. What should be the culture of multicultural society? So far it has only been a Majority accepting minority rights - as minorities gain power does it go the Trumph way ?

"I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some." Does Peterson relate to that?

During his recent lectures on the psychological significance of the biblical Genesis stories, Dr. Peterson criticized the state of research on the topic of leadership. Could you ask him to elaborate? What about the current research is inadequate, and would he envision good research on the topic of leadership to look like?

This. Ask him this.

He grew up surrounded by Alberta NDP and was involved in the party at one time. What does he think of them in power right now?

In rural Alberta when JP was growing up the social credit party was the thing. Not the ndp.

Please probe him about his position on global warming which is that prevention is costly and innovation will somehow magically solve the problem without some kind of strong incentives from now itself.

He expresses doubts about climate models to predict events when all that they need to show is a big shift to a new equilibrium. Tampering with existing weather patterns like ocean currents, ocean acidification will lead to big impact on humanity which has optimized around the current equlibrium. His position in this sense is not conservative.

On a related note, you could ask him about his strategy of answering questions on which he has no expertise (and most likely very little knowledge).

+1

He is a good bullshitter, and I don't really mean that as a slight

Do you think Peterson's interviewers have any knowledge about climate change themselves?

By the way, what incentives were in place to have solar costs drop from $100 of a solar panel per watt in 1975 to $0.35 in 2017? What incentives have been in place for the cost of CO2 capture to decrease from $600 in 2011 to $100 to $200 in 2018? Is that because "America took action to fight global warming"? Just asking.

incentives: China government subsidies (hello, trade war), RUS in USA, many subsidies in Europe, ITC in stimulus, and many others. So yes lots.

OK, then why is Peterson's correct assumption that costs will keep coming down as various incentives are in place derided as magical thinking?

I would guess that in 1975 to now, the cost of all electronics plummeted. How much is the subsidies for solar vs. overall lower costs and bigger infrastructure to make and assemble electronics? Did the solar powered calculator actually have any part in today's solar?

Solar calculators must have been a tiny market. NASA was able to lower solar costs from the 1950s to the early 1970s but not sure after that apart from subsidies.

There were significant incentives but at this point both solar and wind are cost competitive for marginal power. And assuming the cost of power storage keeps trending downward, they'll be the dominant form of power production by mid-century.

So, while incentives were important for solar and wind in the past, they really don't matter very much now. Or at least they aren't critical. I will grant you that the renewable power industry would love to keep as much incentive money in place as possible.

"...wind ...solar ... they'll be the dominant form of power production by mid-century."

Wrong. There are some limited number of sites for wind, because you need ... (Drum roll) wind. Solar has room for expansion but does not have the power density or availability to provide enough power to replace fossil fuels, only nuclear can do that.

About 10% of South Australia's electricity consumption is now provided by rooftop solar. Because it is on roofs it removes less land from use than nuclear power. Infinitely less to a first approximation.

"Wrong. There are some limited number of sites for wind, because you need ... (Drum roll) wind. "

Yes, just like there are a limited number of sites to obtain nuclear fuel. But in both cases there are plenty.

In Winds case, the higher the altitude the greater the wind. So by building taller wind turbines the available area that has acceptable wind grows. Granted, developers are always going to cluster near the best most profitable wind regions. And we'll certainly islands and other isolated areas that require other solutions. But the trend lines are clear.

The combined percentage of electricity production of renewables (wind, solar, hydro, etc) will form the plurality by 2050 for most developed countries.

"Solar has room for expansion but does not have the power density or availability to provide enough power to replace fossil fuels,"

Solar is certainly limited by power density, but it's well above the threshold to be economic and plentiful. Obviously cities will still import power from the rural areas.

For reference, US renewable production has gone from around 7% in 2007 to 17% in 2017. It only needs to maintain that rate of growth (1% per year) for another 16 years to obtain a plurality. IE, On present trend it will become a plurality by 2035 and become a majority in the 2050's.

The only significant road block is economical power storage to handle renewable's intermittency issue.

I don't know what knowledge his interviewers had (if they didn't have any, they have no business asking the question). I for one think that innovation has been unbelievable (whatever the incentives), but that given the uncertainties in the estimates (and the enormous downside risk (paging Taleb)), there should at least be some kind of carbon tax.

My point is that Peterson is a Jungian psychologist. Why in the world should I care what he has to say on climate change? Especially when I can get better information of the same type from Bjorn Lomborg.

He claimed at Oxford that he worked for the UN on sustainable economic and ecological development for 2 years and read a lot of the relevant literature: https://youtu.be/pBbvehbomrY?t=45

Were you aware of this fact?

I was not aware of that "fact" because it is in fact not a fact. Here is the bit on his about page "worked with Jim Balsillie, former CEO of Blackberry’s Research in Motion, on Resilient People, Resilient Planet, the report of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel on Global Sustainability". So he advised some dude who contributed a small bit to a report. I believe him that he read a lot about climate change. I don't know what he read and I don't know what parts of the report the person he advised wrote (or had written for him).

But here is something I do know: he is not an expert on climate change or atmospheric physic or system dynamics or economic analysis (for measuring costs and benefits of policy changes) or a myriad of other topics that would seem necessary to warrant being asked for a valuable opinion on climate change. The UN report was published in January 2012. Let's take a look at what Peterson published in 2011 and 2012 to see if his research suggests any kind of expertise on climate change (certainly if you read "a lot", as an academic, you want to get some kind of publication out of it):

- "Creative Exploration and Its Illnesses"
- "The meaning of meaning"
-"Extreme Liberalism and Reactivity to Arousing Stimuli: a Neurophysiological investigation"
- "Serene Arts: The effect of personal unsettledness and of paintings' narrative structure on personality"
- "From madness to genius: The Openness/Intellect trait domain as a paradoxical simplex"
- "Psychological Entropy: A Framework for Understanding Uncertainty-Related Anxiety"

Now please tell what this Jungian psychologist can tell me about climate change that another actual climate scientist/climate policy analyst can't tell me.

An environment related qu would be good as no one has got to the bottom of what he thinks here. But using the term climate change is a mistake as it’s too politicised and he’ll take it down the political track - his big beef is with people who propose resolving climate change by ditching capitalism. The things to focus on are: what about custodianship of natural resources generally and how can we turn around excessively exploitative relationships with nature (ie where you create massive species or ecosystem loss etc); what does he think about materialism taken to a decadent extreme, ie production and consumption of goods that are only destructive for individuals and the environment; how should humans live in balance with nature and what does this look like to him? Are we there or are we on a path to irreversible loss of fisheries, carbon sinks etc?

But the above comments make a good point--why would I expect Peterson to have anything particularly interesting or insightful to say about this? We could ask him about trade policy and arms control talks and nuclear power plant regulation, too, but there's no reason to think he knows any more about those things than a random guy sitting next to you in the bar, so why bother? He's not running for president, he's a writer/psychologists/self-help guru. Why waste time on "whose side are you on?" type questions?

I think I ask about proposed/acceptable solutions to income inequality. Earned income credit? Education reform?
How to vent the mounting pressure from the left in a way the acknowledges the benefits of a competence system. Should rewards be greater teachers and tradespeople?

Question begging: income inequality may not be a problem

Yes! This is an excellent example of begging the question. I'm going to use it in the future when I find myself needing to explain what "begging the question" actually means.

Is it? Begging the question means a circular proof, NOT simply assuming something to be true...

I was just watching JBP in Rogan (with Weinstien) and he asserted himself that income inequality, at least at the extreme, is certainly a problem because enough people on the bottom will revolt and overturn the whole power structure. So he concedes on that point, but I think he gave himself enough wiggle room to question whether we’re really anywhere near a tipping point, and certainly have to ask the question whether any given solution (ie. Forced redistribution, UBI or otherwise) would be net-positive for society (solve more problems than the problems it would cause, including unforeseen consequences).

He definitely tends to return back to “we’re not as smart as we think we are, and should tread cautiously “ when presented with big policy prescriptions

I'm not sure I'd describe that as "concedes". He self describes as left wing, and generally seems to think that income redistribution is a reasonable thing to do. The bits of the left wing he rails against tend to be identity politics, political correctness etc, not the economic elements of it.

How has the experience of the past three years changed him?

2015 videos show a thoughtful, genteel professor. I can see why students rave about him.

2018 Peterson is a flashy, combative public figure. Certainly less appealing. I understand the avalanche of attacks he's endured, but is all this doing him any good?

Also, how many big-time cynical preachers and self-help gurus started out simple and earnest and got lost along the way, and what are the pitfalls to be avoided?

I just watched 15 minutes of a 2 hour+ interview of Peterson from 2014, and he seems about the same. The difference is that he isn't being asked dumb questions by a BBC reporter:

"Dr Jordan B Peterson | *full-length* 2014 interview"

" I understand the avalanche of attacks he's endured, but is all this doing him any good?"

I think these attacks have brought him much public attention. And thus:

"He currently resides in Toronto, Canada. Peterson's net worth is estimated at $1.5 million. He makes more than $80 thousand per month from the 'Patreon' crowdfunding platform."

Of course it's noteworthy that Jordan Peterson has announced he's dropping Patreon after the ongoing controversies.

https://quillette.com/2019/01/09/patreon-games/

$1.5 million is a reasonably nice house in Toronto.

$1.5 million is not a net worth a celebrity self-help guru should brag about at his age. It is more typical of a rank-and-file academic. You can retire on it at a middle-middle class level if you move way the hell out of Toronto.

It is unfortunate that he rode on the coattails of Donald Trump (of all people). His message isn't that Trumpian but yes he has become more and more combative these days. I stopped listening to his stuff a while back. There's only so much Jung, Nietzsche, and Solzhenitsyn one can take before it all sounds a bit repetitious and frankly outdated.

How would he reform (burn to the ground?) post-secondary education? What would he add/remove from public education?

Follow-up: what specific "marginal" reforms does he regard as plausible and worth fighting for?

We have a university system that seems to work okay for a lot of kids, but some kids don't do well, and a lot of kids end up deep in debt with a not-very-saleable set of skills and a liberal arts degree from Mediocre State U.

Could we try to set up an alternative to standard universities that would serve those kids better?

You wrote recently about Patreon censorship, and Peterson has announced his departure from Patreon on account of censorship. Why not probe your areas of agreement and disagreement concerning the topic, and in particular with Patreon?

Why he commented on twitter that Kavanaugh should step aside from the nomination for SCOTUS because of the divisiveness he caused?

I interpreted that as saying civility trumps (pun not intended) morality. I lost a lot of respect for him on that one.

There are two ways to deal with a divided citizenry. One is to play zero sum games where one wins, the other loses, and in the long run both lose. The other is to find some ground in the middle and fight over differences at the periphery.

The Kavanaugh hearings were pure zero sum. It was a terrible 'he said she said' circus, which are pure ugliness in any context, and especially when involved with probably the only institution in the US which has a modicum of bipartisan support.

It probably would have been better if it hadn't gone that way, but interestingly the electorate responded by not giving either side what they wanted come midterms. Both lost the zero sum game they wanted to play.

Both sides will do it differently next time.

I think the episodes are the magic of the US political system, and in spite of themselves are strengthened by the test. While it is going on though it is very tempting to wish that it wasn't like that.

My interpretation of that was that he was saying that regardless of the veracity of the sexual assault and related claims, the controversialness of Kavanaugh would inexorably damage the legitimacy of the institution of the court. His comment wasn't about morality or civility, but rather institutional legitimacy.

Other than the sexual assault and related claims, there is nothing controversial about Kavanaugh. He is the very soul of establishment Republicanism. Bush appointed him to Federal court, Romney wanted him for the Supreme Court, and he would have been on any Republican president's short list.

"Other than the sexual assault and related claims, there is nothing controversial about Kavanaugh."
I mean yeah, aside from gulags and mass purges, Stalin wasn't so bad.

I mean yeah, aside from gulags and mass purges, Stalin wasn't so bad.

Stalin was responsible for Gulags and mass purges. Kavanaugh was accused of doing something 36 years ago. Of the five people supposedly present, four deny any recollection of any such gathering, direct and circumstantial evidence that she ever met Brett Kavanaugh is nil, and she provably lied on several secondary matters. Partisan Democrats know perfectly well she's a fraud; they don't care.

"and Trump provably lied on several secondary matters. Partisan Republicans know perfectly well he's a fraud; they don't care."

The question is, if the opposition is willing to doubled down as it did -- last-minute, unprovable charges of a high school groping, abject alcoholism and gang rape -- on a traditionalist nominated to replace Antonin Scalia, what can be expected when Ginsburg's seat is vacated? Neutron bombs?

My provisional plan is to be out of the country that week.

Ask him why he thinks it is that he doesn't have many female fans

Because females are generally too unintelligent to understand him.
Even St. Hillary. You're welcome, next question.

I'll bet Peterson has as many female fans as Tyler does, percentage-wise, so that question might cut a little too close to home.

Very dumb question since he inevitably has more female fans than whoever raises this issue.

> Ask him why he thinks it is that he doesn't have many female fans

But that is untrue. He does have quite a number of female fans. He was even on Femsplainer TV show.

He addresses this question all the time. Most of his answer is that the platforms he distributed on are overwhelming Male to start with, so it’s absolutely no surprise his audience/fans skew Male. And then also that he has a lot of women fans...

He has a lot of female fans. When I attended his book talk, almost half the audience were women.

He seems to resonate with a lot of young men, and the Manosphere debates him at length. So could you ask his view of the APA's new missive that traditional masculinity -- "marked by stoicism, competitiveness, dominance and aggression" -- can be emotionally harmful?

Which is your favourite ancient greek polis?

I think I would enjoy ancient Greece because, according to the old statues any way, all the guys had small dicks so I wouldn't feel out of place.

I find his utterances a mix of banal (which is not necessarily a bad thing) and psychobabble mumbo jumbo. Ask him why he thinks that kind of thing is resonating with mostly straight white men?

www.reddit.com/r/iamverysmart

Young straight white men lost Jesus Christ but found Gamergate. This is who Peterson speaks to.

Unless you were born exactly as wise as you are now, things that seem banal to you seemed insightful at one point.
He does psychobabble a bit.
I find him to be good at reminding me of things I need to be reminded of, and good at gently admonishing people who need that as well. No major insights, but a lot of, "yeah, I need to actually follow through on that one".

"things that seem banal to you seemed insightful at one point." I agree. That's I said it wasn't necessarily a bad thing that he was banal. If only he could actually be more concise and direct rather than fading away into some Jungian fugue state.

He's an academic, and has all the flaws you'd expect of an academic. A preference for precision over conciseness is one of them.

From a recent post of yours: "A second question is why political correctness — even if you think it is fully bad — occasions so much opposition compared to many other maladies.

He seems to think political correctness is way more important than you. Probe a bit beyond his usual answer of a Road to Tyranny.

I'm not sure I understand your point. I'm referencing a recent post from Tyler Cowen which seems very relevant to Jordan Peterson's thinking. What am I missing by thinking this makes a fruitful line of questioning?

I think I understand a bit better. My thought was that Jordan Peterson is an outspoken critic, maybe the most famous one, of "Political Correctness" and speech limitations.

Tyler Cowen in his post from a couple of weeks ago raised the question, which I also have, why this generates so much opposition compared to other problems.

My guess is that Jordan Peterson's answer relies more on the Road to Tyranny. You seem to think that tyranny is already here.

I'd like Tyler Cowen to follow up, that was all I was suggesting. I'm not necessarily thinking it's important or not important. Certainly not the most important societal malady in the US. Maybe Jordan Peterson thinks it's the most important malady, that would be interesting to know.

He was an academic, and therefore immersed in the unbridled excesses of PC. Some people could use more PC, academia couple use a lot less.

I think that's a very good point, and it would be interesting to see if he does self-reflect in the fashion you outline.

Does the archetype of Christ apply as much to women as to men?

1. You often say that the "Death of God" resulted in mass murder in the 20th century. What about all the genocidal warfare that took place since time immemorial?

Psycho-evolutionary analysis of key passages in other religious texts and his thoughts on the fundamental differences between major current religions.

In one of your Biblical lectures (I forget which one I’m sorry) one of the characters experiences a sort of trance, and you said that we’ve forgotten about these altered states of consciousness and how to induce them. At the same time, if I’m not mistaken, you are generally dismissive of meditation. Could you please elaborate on why? Also, what are your views on hypnosis?

Because of demographic trends, one of the fastest-growing professions in the next few years is going to be that of caregiver to the elderly (until the artificial intelligence and the robotics get good enough). If you were to hire someone to care for a parent, how would you screen the candidates? Would trait agreeableness weigh more heavily than, say, a corporate worker?

You’ve said that the best way to pick a new employee in a corporate setting is to go with someone who scores high in both IQ and trait conscientiousness. Is there any case in which the above is not a good rule of thumb?

Underrated or Overrated: Sapiens by Yuval Harrari

J.R.R. Tolkien or C.S. Lewis?

What's your favorite movie?

His first book did not receive a lot of attention when it came out, but his work on it seems to have informed a lot of his thinking. I'd ask him to summarize the key points of that book for laypersons. Like what are the 4-5 ideas/theories/conclusions that most represent the insights of that book.

Since Peterson has proven to be a polymath, I wonder what his thoughts on the nation-state are. I would be interested to hear his answer to this: what will come after our age of the nation-state?

How will you get in more than 2 or 3 questions? I like JP, but he answers forever.

How Marxists is modern China?

While he believes that the Bible is an encoding of human experience and wisdom, he tries to separate that wisdom from religion itself. Does he differentiate himself from atheists such as Richard Dawkins, who say we can determine morality without the encumbrance of religious belief? If so, how?

Why do people confuse the freedom from responsibility with the freedom to determine your own destiny?

Ask him, "Which do you find more gratifying the pecuniary compensation or the vexation of liberals?"

How does he decide when to shave? Do beards contribute to toxic masculinity?

Ask him if he feels corrupted by celebrity.

Ask him if humans are suffering, in the Buddhist sense, because of modernity and civilization or whether suffering is a general human trait. Would humans be more fulfilled without civilization?

What issues/topics are you thinking about that you have not yet publicly spoken or written about? (Be sure pronounce about "uh-boot")

One of the first to popularize Nietzsche in the English-speaking world was H. L. Mencken. What parts of Mencken's philosophical approach or approach to Nietsche's work do you like, and which do you disagree with?

What were his GRE scores?

I hope that you will discuss his views on Jungian archetypes and universal myths. Can these be traced to our evolutionary heritage when we lived in small bands, or did they only arise later, when the discovery of agriculture made larger societies possible?

Is there a way to relate our current political situation to some universal myth? Are we in a recognizable chapter in an archetypical story?

Related, when he talks about culture, he talks about Jungian stuff. When he talks about his clinical practice, e.g. assertiveness training, it's standard I/O psych. To what degree are these two sides of psychology related in his view? How does he weigh the differences?

Also, does he think there should be more I/O psych in the education and training space? If so, why and for what?

General question but what I would ask him if I paid my $60 on Patreon. What does he make of René Girard’s theory of memetic desire and disorder and his non sacrificial reading of the gospels

He has confirmed that he's aware of Girard in response to a question back in 2016 at what I think was a Canadian university. But he didn't expand on it at all.

+1 ask him about Girard

What is a way in which he has changed his mind in last two years?

Also, how have his political views changed since he was 30?

What Does he think of Mcgill University?

ask him to shut up, willingly, without impinging on his freedom of speech lol

How can Big 5 Personality traits be consistent cross-culturally? Are Big 5 meaningful at the extremes? What about persons with 2-3 extremes. [Ask him about Statistical Meaning as Evolution of Culture--Jung Update]

When he inevitably says in an answer that x is "in some sense" y, ask him, "in what sense exactly?"

Seriously, I frequently don't find the connections he implies in this way to be obvious.

Ask him about the role of religion in morality. He seems to think that the latter is impossible without the former. Whenever questioned about his own beliefs, however, he tends to be quite evasive and sometimes even duplicitous.

What will be the status of free speech in North American universities 10 years from now?

What are his views on Burger King? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-BDgQMGs7Mc

What was the intellectual milieu around psychology at McGill University when he attended?

(late 1980s, post Quebec referendum when Montreal had already lost many of its prominent Anglophone citizens and arguably many intellectuals to Toronto)

How does he respond to the criticism that he targets his message to religious people (mainly men) but plays coy when anyone tries to pin him down on the simple question "Do you believe in God?"

How does he think the Catholic Church should evolve to better achieve its goals in the XXI century? In particular in light of the worldwide decreasing religiosity and the higher competition from Protestant churches (e.g. in Latin America, a traditionally Catholic region).

+1

Along a similar line, what does Peterson think of the use of Latin in the Catholic Church? In particular, the Church uses Latin (among other reasons) to insulate the language from cultural mutations of the words.

That seems to be right up Peterson's alley - a Language set-aside to be preserved from alterations.

Does he believe that religious stories are a fully human construction (possibly to transmit knowledge on how to behave properly in the world)?

The Social Credit Party oversaw the development and transformation of the province he grew up in. As we are all the product of the regimes we grew up in, how has the social credit movement affected his thought?

What is post-modernism?

What is neo-Marxism?

How does he feel about the over-representation of misogynists, racists, and actual fascists in his audience?

Do you have any evidence about that over representation? Or are you just assuming that hit piece articles about him that refer to all the bad *ists you just listed are representative of his fan base?
Did you only read 2 articles by people you trust who quoted some racists, paraphrased Peterson, and made clear their mood affiliation, and decided based on that?

Overrepresentation compared to what? If you mean compared to population prevalence, last I heard in the USA the half the population that voted for Trump were all misogynists and racists (I think Hilary told us that), and presumably at least some of the Democrat supporters were also misogynists or racists who just happened to like left wing policies. So population prevalence is > 50%, what is the prevalence in his audience?

Over-representation? But they are EVERYWEHRE. Why just this morning I found a fascist under my bed.

So, you've got a cat too.

I would love to see actual data on any of this from an objective source.

Have him discuss the tactics that will be taken by each side should Warren run against Trump - have him list what will be the major
honest argument that will be used by each side, the major dishonest argument and which question each side will be desperate to obfuscate.

If Warren or another leftists wins, what are the process and chances of getting their agenda enacted in the aftermath of Trump

Please ask him how Christian morality is likely to change in the next 50 years (for example, in the 1850s, certain scriptures were used to justify slavery and then later during the civil rights movement used to justify segregation). What inviolable moral standards won't exist in 50 years?

Both the Southern Baptist Convention and the Southern Presbyterian Church endorsed desegregation in 1954, so it's not clear to what "Christian morality" you are referring.

Peterson is a global celebrity now. How has his media treatment differed across countries? Is there greater openness to his message in, say, the United States where conservative and libertarian thought is rather strong than in Canada and Britain where social liberalism is relatively predominant?

What are his peers in the IDW, the best of them, wrong about?

Ask whether he takes selection bias coming from his profession, especially his clinical work, into account when assessing the nature of humanity generally. He seems to have an overly harsh view of the world. And as someone mentioned above, his analysis of the Bible seems to underrepresent the message of love and the extent to which people do follow that message.

My nomination: Can you believe in God without believing in the supernatural?

Deism?

Not quite, Deism posits there is a supernatural God, but that he does not and has not interfered with the world after Creation.

+1

I like this one because it might get at the answer to that question that he so loves to avoid, "do you believe in God" without making it a personal question.

Q. Peterson draws heavily on Nietzsche, Jung, Piaget, Solzhenitsyn and Dostoyevsky and is very good at communicating their ideas to a mass audience, in a fresh and integrated way. However: where does he see himself as going beyond this canon?

To elaborate a little: it seems to me that what is truly new in Peterson's thought is a synthesis of this canon with cybernetic ideas, derived from Wiener through Piaget (he acknowledges this debt in "Three Forms of Meaning and the Management of Complexity" and in some of his lectures). I wonder if he agrees.

Incidentally this suggests that as reinforcement learning becomes a productive technology (through e.g. DeepMind's work) Peterson's deeper ideas will grow in importance.

Honestly, I'd like to see you press him on the Laurier defamation lawsuit. I'd like to hear what he has to say about it in a long-form context, with (what I'm assuming will be) a relatively sympathetic interviewer. Overall I'm a huge fan of his, but his pursuit of this suit was somewhat disappointing to me.

I think the challenge will be to avoid asking him about the same four or five subjects that he has been discussing (and rehearsing) for months now in order to invite fresh responses. If anything, I'd warn against asking about the Bible, Jung, gender identity, Gulag Archipelago, and academia as much as you can. My sense is he actually does like a good chat, and I wonder if he would respond to winter, regional identity, or Toronto. Good luck generating a novel conversation with him and I hope this helps.

If you are willing to confront a guest, ask him about the points
raised by someone who knows him well, from before he became famous.
I was Jordan Peterson’s strongest supporter. Now I think he’s dangerous
https://www.thestar.com/opinion/2018/05/25/i-was-jordan-petersons-strongest-supporter-now-i-think-hes-dangerous.html
By Bernard Schiff, Fri. May 25, 2018

Thanks for this link! It illuminates much of what I think about Dr. P as a public intellectual (the most important today per TC). Both the good and the other.

Fascinating read! His confrontation with the ethics board is wildly bizarre. I know that it's rather common for superstars in academia to be self-confident and arrogant. I suppose that, when you're among the very smartest in a group of very smart people, it encourages a dangerous magnification of ego. Too bad that he, apparently, has fallen into this trap.

Nassim Taleb calls IQ Tests a hoax in that they are a measure of Unintelligence, not of Intelligence. To what degree can low IQ be overcome through reframing one’s life through guided storytelling and giving oneself purpose? Can focusing on emotional healing help the poor who have low IQ increase conscientiousness and be more industrious?

I find Taleb so frustrating. He seems like he had intelligent things to say, but so much of it becomes indecipherable because he available must communicate his ideas like he is a heel doing promos for the WWE.

Taleb is a blowhard -- he makes ex cathedra comments a la Nietzsche, but he is Just some guy who happened to publish black swan around the time of the financial crisis & therefore people paid attention to him.

Does anyone represent the taxpayers?

What's one recent instance where you were wrong about something?

If this doesn't get asked, Peterson called MGTOW a bunch of cry babies who need to grow up. He was asked about that a few weeks later and said he shouldn't have said that.

Who are the leading feminist thinkers and gender theorists, and where can we find Peterson's scholarly engagement of their work?

Just out curiosity, do you think popular feminist or gender academics would be able to name leading classical liberals or Catholic natural law thinkers? Do you think they frequently engage with their work?

My sense of academia is that bubbles are very common and very narrow.

Camile Paglia?

How are his bowels doing on the beef-only diet? Seriously, though, I'd like to hear some questions pushing back against his terrible misreadings and misrepresentations of postmodern thought, and definitely some healthy Jung skepticism thrown in for good measure.

1. Why did you sue Kate Manne for her criticisms of you that draw on her area of academic expertise? Why have you not sued others (mostly men) who have said just as harsh or harsher things both in academic fora and non-?
2. Do you have anything to say to your fellow "IDW"-defenders-of-free-speech who have ignored the 1st Amendment violations of anti-BDS legislation?
3. You tend to adopt macho postures on Twitter toward men who criticize you in print (rather than, say, offer reasoned responses). Is this a Jungian thing? Or a lobster thing?

How much pee is stored in the balls?

I would ask Dr. Peterson if he doesn't find it disconcerting that although he writes in very dense, academic prose, his followers are generally laypeople, without any sort of training in the fields of psychology or philosophy.
Meaning, isn't it reasonable to conclude that the majority of them don't really grasp most of what he says?

Isn't that argument the exact argument every "popularizer" of an otherwise academic only girls had used against them. I don't mean "often used". It is used 100% of the time against academics(and serious artists, musicians, etc.) who develop a broad popular following.

JP isn't a popularizer.
He writes in, as I said, dense academic jargon which is wholly inaccessible to laypeople.
How many of his fans have actually read or studied Nietzche, Jung, or could articulate what "post modernism" is and how it came about?

Whenever I encounter them they all just sound like Otto in A Fish Called Wanda.

The ability to digest and transmit complex ideas to non-experts is a huge talent that a lot of smart people lack and don't appreciate.

People like Dawkins, Dennett, Pinker, Ridley all posses this gift. Friedman towered over his profession because of this. Peterson has this skill too.

What the heck does he mean by Post-modernism? Is he really against Borges and Samuel Beckett?

And don't let him cop out by saying he means only some postmodernists or only the philosophers. He chose to give the finger to all postmodernists. Make him defend that finger or back down from it.

Come on, are you saying you don’t also notice a massive difference between po-mo as practiced by a few artistic geniuses whose creative fecundity gave us inventive and playful category busters, on the one hand, and a large social-political movement inspired by philosophers that wanted to do away with truth, realism, reference, etc.?

If there is a massive difference between them then why do people who make up categories like postmodernism put them in the same category?

I realize this isn’t your intent, but do you think you’re creating the risk of:

A) People engaging in genuinely distasteful behavior and blaming negative reaction on “political correctness.”

B) People blaming their lack of career success and/or romantic success on “Social Justice Warriors” rather than their own personal failings.

Isn't he the worst sort of reductionist? He paints feminists and postmodernists with the broadest of brushes. Does his philosophy allow for any subtlety?

And in this respect, isn't he the Anti-Nietzsche? Nietzsche hated philosophical system-making. Peterson seems to be all about systematizing ideas, organizing them, connecting the dots with webs. What would Nietzsche think of him?

I would love to hear him talk on Rene Gerard and his theory of mimetic conflict and contagion. It’s so relevant today… Particularly online.

What is his ethical position on clones?https://twitter.com/outra_ja/status/1082905908525424641?s=21

He's said that even though abortion is wrong it should probably stay legal, as not every wrong thing should be illegal. But if abortion is the taking of innocent life, logically speaking if we agree this should be illegal for born innocent life, shouldn't it be illegal for the unborn as well?

There’s much I admire about JP and his thought. I find his lack pof humor to be suspicious however. When the heavyweight bout between he a Zizeck was proposed I remember thinking....I don’t know who will win but I know who will be funnier!

He does have a quite good sense of humour, but seems to have lost it post-fame. Watch some of his older lectures.

What does he think of republicans focusing on a single option in dealing with illegals migrants? Such as deportations for those that are in & wall for those that are coming.
Roughly 12 mill migrants are US, deportation is not viable if this is the only option or solution used. Should the dems not focus on criticizing the reps for their simplistic illogical solutions?

Also, what does he think if there are proper definitions to define racism. For example, as a migrant.. I seen racism from one neighbourhood to another, from one town to another. I seen racism out of competitiveness, anger, fear, anxiety but it gets worse when it becomes indifference. The peak level of racism is how Hitler defined Jews as insects... I feel insects are the most unrelatable livings beings, we can kill as a way to get rid of pests... Hitler viewed getting rid of Jews as getting rid of pests. Why not promote a proper definition of racism based on symptoms of extremity?

Q. You often cite the Bible as a guide to living a fulfilled and ethical life. Would making AIs Christians - in practice if not belief - make them safe?

1) Nassim Taleb has recently been extremely critical of both IQ and of psychologists in general. In what ways are his criticism correct?

2) who are three people he admires most and why?

3) what’s something significant he’s changed his mind on about in the last year?

4) what does he believe happens after this life?

How can we as Canadians, reverse the extreme and destructive liberal leanings of university academia to save the hearts and minds of our young people who are the future of our country and even now are operating in places of power and starting to influence the laws and culture of our land?

Does he have any thoughts on how the living conditions of indigenous people in Canada could be improved?

Without addressing his actual belief in Jesus Christ’s divinity, which he prefers not to discuss, can Peterson say whether he believes Christianity—or any religion that he thinks useful—can capture or retain meaningfully the hearts of the many without them believing in its actual—rather than metaphorical—story of divinity?

If Marxism is so wrong, how come it created the world's largest middle class? If Marxism is so murderous, how come it created the world's most populous nation? If Marxism is so backwards, how come it put man into space and give us advanced technologies like IPhones?

I love the deep stuff, and there's hours - weeks, at least - of listening/viewing for that from him. I'd be interested in his comments on whatever popular entertainment, movies, books, television, has come to his attention as significant.

!!! How would he rate his performance of walking the tightrope of public opinion? Given his current public perception, would he change the way he approached anything in the past?

He is a champion of honest discourse. Yet he is inevitably pulled in different directions by strong emotional reactions from those to his left and to his right.

- can a rich society remain virtuous?
- is your common sense morality really “common sense”, absent Christianity and religion?
- is more wealth always better? Is it possible for marginal impact of increasing wealth to turn negative?
- is bitcoin winning inevitable?

I have a few questions I've always wanted to ask him. Maybe you find one worthy.

1A. How much of your popularity came from the same super-power Trump used to win the election? By this I mean garner popularity by confronting a certain unpopular faction of the left.

1B. Should we worry about this super power in 2020?

1C. Is it okay to periodically battle outgroups to rally followers, gather momentum, and possibly utilize it for good in other domains?

2. What evidence can falsify Jungian theories?

3. Who's your favorite liberal? (Steven Pinker or Jonathan Haidt don't count)

4. What's the difference in rhetorical styles between you and Jonathan Haidt?

5. You talk a lot about conservatives and liberals, their personality matrices and their proper roles. How do libertarians fit in the mix?

6. Underrated/Overrated:
A. The Apostle Paul
B. Freud
C. Natalism

Underrated / Overrated

Broccoli ;)

What is your view on the great Camille Paglia?

What are Peterson's thoughts on Nassim Taleb? In particular, the principle of Skin in the Game.

I would ask him about the real validity of the five factor model of personality. Ask him about how negative and positive adjective cluster at opposite ends of the factor producing overly robust results. The problem is the I inherent distinction between the descriptive and evaluative meanings inherent to adjectives. This paper cuts a hole in the big five research that was never really addressed. I am supposed that Peterson is such a proponent of the system and an insider in personality research (look at his earlier work especially with Collin de young.) Here is the paper to put you on to the track of the problem with the big five: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/232567188_Trait_Inferences_Evaluative_and_Descriptive_Aspects

who am I kidding Tylor won't read the whole thing, not even the whole post. He wants juicier flavor of the day stuff like white genetics rather than academic minuteau that impresses only the minority.

Please ask Jordon about what he thinks about Nassim Taleb and his comment about IQ/Psych being overrated.

See below
https://medium.com/incerto/iq-is-largely-a-pseudoscientific-swindle-f131c101ba39
https://www.reddit.com/r/samharris/comments/abuw7c/nassim_taleb_iq_is_largely_a_pseudoscientific/

If nerds could break the internet...

Over rated/ under rated:

- Northrop Frye
- The Golden Bough
- Marcus Aurelius
- Mary Douglas (Purity and Danger)

Has Harold Bloom had any influence on his reading/thinking? How much does literary criticism generally have to offer in terms of work like his?

Is there anyone Peterson will not allow on his alternative-to-patreon service? Will everyone be pre-approved?

It would have to be restrictive. Otherwise, the Left will use it as a trolling platform to derail it. If Peterson was a nobody, then you could get away with a broad allowance, but his very celebrity status will ensure there are active saboteurs.

Favorite poets? Poems? Did considerations of the great epic poems from around the world have any influence on Maps of Meaning which I have regretfully not read yet.

You should make your points about why we should be suspicious of simple stories and ask if and how they apply to the sorts of stories that JBP is interested in.

This whole spiel:

https://www.ted.com/talks/tyler_cowen_be_suspicious_of_stories?language=en&fbclid=IwAR0jmZqrpaldI4Ar1Zjo-5b7NMFpXbKW7NAAwKvatZy9RfRP06_Ty2lIeQI

I've heard him discuss how a carnivore or low carb diet has greatly diminished some of his serious health conditions, as well as those of his daughter. Digging into what he's learned/researched from that might be worth exploring.

Here is one that would really challenge him I believe: He talked about how divorce can destroy men these days, even if they do everything right. He counselled such people, and has seen it first hand. Yet he still mocked mgtow (men going their own way - men who do not want to marry), and he advocates for marriage. I would like to ask him if he is knowingly sending young men who trust him into a trap.

He seems to believe that free market economy is a zero sum game similar to monopoly and that causes inequalities growing indefinitely.
The question is if he is aware that these assumptions are marxist and real economy (Austrian) sees it completely differently

1. Which recent non-medical innovations do you deem particularly beneficial for mankind?

2. Which is - in your experience - the most productive setting or method for a productive exchange and discussion of ideas?

3. Given your exponentially increased exposure to other people‘s opinions and attitudes over the past years, did you need to adapt some of your views (either in your capacity as a clinical psychiatrist or as an general intellectual) on human behavior and if so, which and why?

4. Describe your latest as well as your most powerful „Heureka“-moment in the past two years.

5. Do you have a method to avoid being overwhelmed by negative emotions during debates?

When there is no church, what does the separation between church and state represent?

Along the same vein, have we elevated politics to the status of religion?

Try to nail him down on actual policy prescriptions (in academia, social policy, etc). What precisely and specifically should be done/changed, what are the top priorities, what benefits does he expect?
From what I have seen he likes to talk in generalities, vague concepts, abstractions, etc.

Does he actually believe the Jungian BS that is (supposedly) behind his views? If so, why should we take him seriously? If not, why should we believe him/trust him on anything else?

I would love to hear more about his meat-only diet and how long he thinks he can sustain that for. If he still believes in it strongly, how would that diet work if more people adopted it, specifically on an environmental scale.

Q: Should the value of an author’s work be judged on the basis of his personal views or actions?

In his frequent condemnation of postmodern neo-Marxism JP seems to agree with this view. In a lecture on Foucault and Derrida (17. Nov 2017), e.g., he has stated: “Foucault and Derrida […] in the late 60s and early 70s […] were avowed Marxists way, way after anyone with any shred of ethical decency had stopped being a Marxist. Foucault in particular, who never fit in anywhere and who was an outcast in many ways and a bitter one and a suicidal one his entire life, did everything he possibly could with his staggering IQ to figure out every treacherous way possible to undermine the structure that wouldn’t accept him in all his peculiarity.”

On various other occasions JP takes other people’s character as an argument against their work. But if this is the case, then why are the same standards not applied to some of JP’s own “intellectual heros”? Like Martin Heidegger (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Heidegger_and_Nazism) or Mircea Eliade (see, e.g., the diaries of Mihail Sebestian
https://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2018/09/mihail-sebastian-journal-1935-1944.html and the entries in 1937 on March 2, April 4, December 7 and December 17).

What's the state of priming research? Some of John Bargh's experiments have failed to replicate. Meanwhile Gary Latham has conducted several experiments in the organizational field, including replications. His case is special because he went from thinking the whole thing was rubbish to believe the effect is real, moving in the opposite direction from recent events that have cast doubts in the existence of priming as such.

Can it be used for self-regulation and self-control?

His thoughts on assisted-suicide/euthanasia?

"life is suffering" is a guide to what he thinks and what probably tell to young men in a conference. What would be his answer to grown up men taking care of elderly parents?

Indeed, I'm not a teenager anymore. Perhaps that's why so difficult to read/listen to him. As a grown ass man I'm just bored by his father/preacher attitude. Teens looking for a father figure may think different.

So much of what he says is just common sense. If you have your act together it should be boring. A lot of people don't.

Are boys in today's world less masculine than previous generations? If so, why is that the case?

You won't ask this, but why the hell does every insightful opinion he has correspond with a Rene Girard theory or observation? He claims he's never read Girard, barely heard of him, which is frankly, impossible.

Why do you dislike frozen?

Being the staunch advocate of free speech that Dr. Peterson is, why did he decide it was acceptable to de-platform Faith Goldy?

I would like to know how does Dr. Peterson reconcile being a clinical psychologist and a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto where his main areas of study are in abnormal, social, and personality psychology, with a particular interest in the psychology of religious and ideological belief, and the assessment and improvement of personality and performance. Including the fact that Dr. Peterson studied at the University of Alberta and McGill University as a post-doctoral fellow before moving to Harvard University, where he was an assistant and then an associate professor in the psychology department and still have faith in God? How are you not an atheist with your intellect and understanding, where is the logic and reason?

1) What's the source of your definition of "postmodernism"?

https://jordanbpeterson.com/philosophy/postmodernism-definition-and-critique-with-a-few-comments-on-its-relationship-with-marxism/

2) Has anyone written a coherent defense of "postmodern neo-Marxism"?

3) Are the Marxist criticisms of postmodernism valid?

4) Is skepticism towards meta-narratives valuable?

There is controversy in the Stoicism community (links below) about whether Jordan Peterson's work is in line with Stoic philosophy. Is he influenced by Stoicism in any way? Has he ever compared his work to Stoicism?

https://modernstoicism.com/jordan-peterson-and-stoicism-by-justin-vacula/

https://modernstoicism.com/nope-jordan-peterson-aint-no-stoic-by-massimo-pigliucci/

I read that blog from time to time, and that exchange cost it--and the modern Stoic movement--a LOT of credibility in my mind. Peterson has never presented himself as a Stoic, so judging him as one is simply asinine. Evaluating his actions from a Stoic perspective may have some value--there are lessons to be learned, both in terms of what to do and in terms of what not to do--but the debate about whether his work is in line with Stoicism, or worse whether he's a Stoic in any sense, is simply nonsensical. The whole exchange encapsulates the absolute worst parts of American politics, all be it in a more civil manner than most.

Yeah, I found that very sad, too. I think one of the main misunderstanding they have (aside from being extremely uncharitable about CW-stuff) is the following:

"Peterson urges individuals to be self-reflective and work to fix their lives rather than being resentful, complaining, and being critical of the world while not working to change one’s own mindset or improve their condition."
(which is a bit of a contradictory sentence, but maybe I'm quoting with too little context)

"Peterson’s advice plays into one of the worst stereotypes about Stoicism, that it is an inward-looking, quietist philosophy. But it is not. The virtue of justice requires us to try to change things for the better, for everyone. Historical examples like those of Cato the Younger, as well as recent ones lie Nelson Mandela (who was inspired by Marcus’ Meditations) are obvious pointers. When Peterson tells us that self-improvement is “more important than any possible political action” he is simply wrong. For Stoics the two go hand in hand: we improve ourselves as we improve the world, and vice versa. Cosmopolitanism, not egoism."

Peterson's idea is that your critical judgement cannot be trusted, if you're living an obviously unvirtous life. I think, that's something the ancient Stoic would agree with.
But (some) leftistst immediately and falsely mistake this position as 'Quietism', not understanding, that a person who took the time to build himself up to become strong also has a much stronger and steadier voice. Not to mention, that such a person is less prone to shouting non-sense.

But I would think it's extremely gauche to now say, that Student activists are in Stoic terms 'fools'. I mean, I may (perhaps wrongly) believe it, but saying that is just needlessly divisive and would only turn people off from a good thing, if people now think, that Stoicism is anti-SJW or whatever.
Like Bill Clinton has claimed 'Meditations' as having influenced him strongly and that he rereads it every now and then.
And think of him, what you will, but he never had the indecency of saying, that his Republican opponents are not to be trusted, because they unlike him, do not possses Stoic virtue.
He had the good sense of not spoiling ancient wisdom with his own divisive politics (be they wise or not).
Those two definitely crossed the line so hard, trying to wield the noble philosophy to score cheap points against someone, they have political disagreements with and I think they clearly misunderstand.
The line is a dot to them.

In contrast, I think Tim Ferriss gets it right, when talking and celebrating Stoicism (though I don't like the "Tao of Seneca", because I prefer reading the dialogues in full). His meatphor of it being a 'mental operating system' is pretty decent.
I mean, people might be turned off by Tim Ferriss in general and he's not everybody's cup of tea and maybe a bit too good at hyping himself, but he's probably done a lot in popularizing it.
And nobody would ever go: Stoicism? Ugh, I hate Tim Ferriss. Fuck no!
But now people might go: Stoicism? Ugh, it's that SJW-thing. Or the anti-JP thing, and JP is my spirit animal. So fuck that.

I would be interested in you asking about his biblical lecture series. As you have mentioned on this blog, you have read through the Bible on several occasions, although you are not a believer. For Peterson, his relationship to Christianity appears complex and I don't know exactly how he defines his religious beliefs. But I would be courage a discussion around his bible lecture series and for you to ask him what he sees the value of the Bible for a non-believing audience. Is there inherent value found in biblical stories or is the value mainly because so much of Western culture has been shaped by Christianity. Looking forward, how can society harness the value of religious participation in fostering higher marriage rates, lower alcohol and smoking rates, and higher volunteerism if he believes religious participation and specifically Christianity does promote these things.

I would be interested in you asking about his biblical lecture series. As you have mentioned on this blog, you have read through the Bible on several occasions, although you are not a believer. For Peterson, his relationship to Christianity appears complex and I don't know exactly how he defines his religious beliefs. But I would be courage a discussion around his bible lecture series and for you to ask him what he sees the value of the Bible for a non-believing audience. Is there inherent value found in biblical stories or is the value mainly because so much of Western culture has been shaped by Christianity. Looking forward, how can society harness the value of religious participation in fostering higher marriage rates, lower alcohol and smoking rates, and higher volunteerism if he believes religious participation and specifically Christianity does promote these things.

You will probably already ask this, but What is the Jordan B Peterson production function look like?

Dr. Peterson's early research focused on alcoholism. Why his opinion of naltrexone/Sinclair method? Why is not more widely prescribed?

Dr. Peterson's believe that biblical stories hold deep truth, but he seems not to say much about the value of Christian religious practices. What his view of the value or import of communion, baptism, and liturgy?

How could high school or college be changed to better serve young men alienated from our educational system?

Ask him his opinion on Canadian Content laws. Despite his free speech advocacy, I don't remember him ever offering an opinion on the issues.

Along those lines, I would ask his opinion on Nationalistic Identity politics (Canadian & American), and how they are differ from other forms of identity politics.

Why does he not "go meta" in the usual academic way in his main academic book?
"Peterson doesn’t go meta. He doesn’t offer readers any degree of certainty in his claims, nor distinguish in which claims he’s more confident. He doesn’t say how widely others agree with him, he doesn’t mention any competing accounts to his own, and he doesn’t consider examples that might go against his account. He seems to presume that the common underlying structures of past cultures embody great wisdom for human behavior today, yet he doesn’t argue for that explicitly, he doesn’t consider any other forces that might shape such structures, and he doesn’t consider how fast their relevance declines as the world changes. "
http://www.overcomingbias.com/2018/07/maps-of-meaning.html

Good article!

I read Peterson’s work as being focussed on myth, how western society has left this myths behind, and the effect on individuals. Peterson proposes that we return to the historical myths to live better lives.

Why is it best to return to historical myths, rather than inventing new ones to understand the world around us? If we return to old myths, are we not just delaying the inevitable?

I think Peterson would say that this is what Nietzsche proposed (inventing new myths). But Nietzsche didn't succeed. Turns out maybe a single lifetime isn't nearly enough to build up a coherent worldview by one's self.

I'd ask Tyler to not do a show with him so Peterson doesn't use the platform.

"God's favour could be gained, and his wrath averted, through **proper** sacrifice--and, also, bloody murder might be motivated among those unwilling or unable to succeed in this manner." (J. Peterson, 12 Rules for Life, 2018, pg 164)

Peterson's book lays out the foundations for meaningful existence by proper sacrifice, but how can one live with a high time preference when much of the relevant present data suggests a large discount of future value? For example: the unstable and unreliable political climate, increasing rate of debt accumulation with little want of slowing, and reasonable declining distrust in institutions; Wouldn't it be foolish to emulate Job when many don't believe in the hereafter?

I don't know. It's just hard to evaluate a proper sacrifice when even marriage isn't as reliable or beneficial for those outside the elite milieu. And the "bloody murderers" seem to be rampant and succeeding.

More examples of how lobster sex has anything to do with humans, please!

I wonder if Jordan Peterson is aware of Ray Dalio?

Peterson would likely be fascinated to learn about Bridgewater's relentless pursuit of excellence through pure idea meritocracy. My guess is that Peterson thinks such a thing would be impossible in the "real world" but would be delighted to know it exists.

How would a neurotic person do better in the economy?

Ask him how he reconciles his belief in monogamy as the gold standard for relationships for the western psyche for the last couple of millennia and the rising evidence confirming polygamy as the standard for the vast majority of the time humans have existed on earth and what type of evidence would make him shift his stance on the topic?

"What does it say about you as a thinker and presenter of ideas that your popularity comes through audio rather than print? What distinguishes a thinker or idea that is successful in print versus one that is successful in audio? Does it concern you that most people engage with your ideas without full attention - for instance while they are driving a car or in the shower?" Something like this. "Have you noticed that audiences are more receptive to certain themes in lecture versus podcast versus print?"

Can't wait to hear this conversation Tyler. Next up Robert Caro?
-JREB

Hello dr Jordan Peterson, I cannot thank you enough for coming in my life with your speech and words that have truly made me into a more articulate, truthful dragon slayer. I have two question for you.
1. What’s your view on Christopher Hitchens?
2. I have listened to you speaking on God, religion and Christianity. It’s really interesting to observe how logical it sounds in it self.
I just wanted to ask how do you select between the gods, religions and cultures. How do you select out between the implicit assumption on which Hindus, Buddhists and Christians act out their life? I think it partially breaks down to your definition of truth: a Darwinian notion. My confusion is if you want to say a truth which ensures your survivability. how do you select the timeframe on which you decide.
Since different entities survive better believing in different things, how do you sort out these truths.
These are my confusion. I hope this question reaches you and I hope I can hear your thoughts on this.

"You frequently say that you've been misinterpreted by the press and others. It's very common in debates over your philosophy to have your fans explain "no, no, no, what he meant was..."

Number 10 in your "12 Rules For Life" is "Be precise in your speech."

At what point do you take responsibility for the frequency in which you are "misinterpreted?" Do you feel you have failed to be precise enough in your speech when describing your beliefs?

Ask him questions along two different lines:
(1) With the benefit of hindsight, how should women or African Americans have gone about changing the status quo to achieve equal rights and protection under the law?
(2) In what ways would law or norms of competition be different today if the past XXX years had seen power structures dominated by women instead of men?

Ask Peterson about his notions of "truth".
As Sam Harris stated after his notorious interview with him:

"He seemed to be claiming that any belief system compatible with
our survival must be true, and any that gets us killed must be false"

In that interview Harris postulates a scenario where his wife is
cheating on him and he kills himself and says:
"you have to grant one thing; you cannot remove the one piece:
because you killed yourself it's not true that she was having an affair"

and that is followed by a long silence from Peterson.

Ask him if he's been able to come up with an answer to that question.

Can JP's belief system of truth be equated to facts? I took at as a more teological framework for truth instead of facts because all kinds of phenomena would break it otherwise. It presupposes that suicide is the false belief instead of denying empirical fact of his wife's infidelity. Honestly, I couldn't follow the debate, it's a lack of intelligence or knowledge on my part I assume.

Two questions. Apologies if the first seems like nonsense.
Can he explain how the Lion king is a valid modern myth while Frozen is propaganda? I dont understand the criteria he uses to decide. (Related : Moana - overrated or underrated)

Secondly, please ask him about Star Wars. I assume you will anyway, but just in case.

Has Peterson ever thought about interviewing Nassim Taleb, whose "Skin in the Game" thesis seems like a good complement to Peterson's arguments about personal repsonsibility.

I'm late to the party here, but I'm curious what he thinks about the new APA guidelines related to masculinity: https://www.apa.org/about/policy/boys-men-practice-guidelines.pdf

..Late comment, but try to make him riff on the PLOS-One study he always refers on the relationship between infectious disease prevalence and authoritanism. Alternatively the "parasite stress theory" by Randall Thornhill.

How indispensable is the modern university for a project like Maps of Meaning? Could this have been written (and published) *outside* the academy? Then? In 2019? Or would its submission without the PhD/Harvard Professor credential have been a non-starter for the publisher? If he were restarting his career today as a 25-year-old, would he be angling for jobs inside academia, or looking elsewhere?

Peterson has alot of, how should I put this, misapprehensions apropos the pareto distribution and really assigns much more importance to this occasionally seen distribution then is warranted. You seem like you would be in a good position to push back on this.

Do you worry that people who do not understand your reasoning and only buy your conclusions? For example, people who use your arguments on why women are not necessarily discriminated to conclude that they are not discriminated.

How about, "What do you hope to accomplish?"

I recall Jordan Peterson once saying [in one of Sam Harris' podcasts] that it would take him 20 minutes [or perhaps he said 40] to explain what his concept of the God he believes in.

You may not want to give him so much time, but could he at least direct us to some lecture or writing that would allow us to glimpse his conception of the God he said he believes in?

I would ask him what it means that more woman have opted into the working external (male) sphere than the opposite, men opting into the domestic (female) sphere. To me, it suggests that the previous gendered roles were more favourable to men than woman,strictly in terms of choice. Having read his books, I would think he would say that the societal benefits outweigh this cost but it would be interesting to here this vocalisation.

Sorry for the 2nd post, but what evidence does he have that the 'isms' of the 20th represent some unique historical horrors visited upon the world? Is there some sort of evidence that this was worth than say so many of the Religious wars the swept Europe for 1000 years. He presents the recent horrors as strong evidence as the failure of recent eras, but I have my suspicions that this is recency bias and comparing one data set with lots of evidence to another with scant...

What is the Straussian reading of Tyler *not* saying, as usual, that it's his conversation, not ours, in this post?

Which country is doing the most today to successfully advance the practice of traditional western civilization within their borders? How has that changed over the last fifty years, and why?

I wonder whether he thinks the majority of his fans understand him correctly, opposed to understanding a dumbed down version of him that fits with their existing world view? Because I think he is wildly misinterpreted/misrepresented by most of his fans. I think most haven”t actually read even an interview with him.

In his ideal view, what role does Christianity play in the westin 100 years from now?

A)Most of the "postmodern" thinkers he decries are "Nietzcheans", indeed Foucault sees himself quite strongly as one. What does he think they get wrong about Nietzche? What does he get right?

Tyler,

Please ask Prof Peterson his thoughts on Viktor Frankl and logotherapy. I sense Frankls influence on his world view as much as any of the other authors he mentions but in the 3 years of following him I have never heard him speak about Frankl.

Thanks,
Christian Acker

Peterson claims to be a strong supporter of the principle of "equality of opportunity" and a hierarchical structure based on competence i.e. a meritocracy. Given these beliefs, I would be interested to hear what kind of policies he would favor to attain these principles in a very unequal country (at least in terms of material outcomes). Is he a fan of inheritance taxes, should rich people be forced to have their kids in the same schools as poor people to ensure that everyone starts from the same position? How much government intervention does he think is acceptable to achieve his goals?

Im curious how he feels that he initially became 'famous' for a straw-man argument about transgender folks and pronouns. JBP said “That’s why I made the video. I said that we were in danger of placing the refusal to use certain kinds of language into the same category as Holocaust denial.” No serious legal group or scholar found this plausible and yet, without that there is little chance he would be interviewed by Dr Cowen.

Peterson says to tell the truth, but Sun Tzu says that all warfare is based on deception. If I tell the truth, am I setting myself up to lose battles?

Two questions:

A lot of members of the IDW like to talk about the pathologies of the mainstream media, and there definitely are some. I'd like to know what he thinks might be the pathologies of IDW platforms. For example, how does he avoid being influenced in what he says by the risk that he will lose Youtube subscribers or web donations?

Second, does he feel like his advice and outlook are universally useful, or are they more of a useful corrective for a specific kind of person with specific beliefs?

How do you understand pluralism in distinction to moral relativism? How do your critics misunderstand these concepts or misunderstand your conception of these concepts. Is self-segregation inevitable in a truly pluralistic society?

This question will sound confrontational, but perhaps it can be asked in a polite way: Why shouldn't religious people be treated and regarded in the same way as he seems to regard transgender people? In other words, "sure, everybody should be polite to everybody else, but why should we value laws that say the government ought to respect religion, and why should an individual every respect the pope, or a priest, or a rabbi, etc? If they want to dress up and play pretend, fine, but should we not speak the truth and call them delusional to their face because they are hallucinating up the existence of a very specific god on no evidence? Why should there be legal protections for them to not work on weekends simply so they can play make-believe? Why should a business owner respect that, by compulsion of law?

Question 2: does his analysis of the gender pay gap, or lack thereof, not assume that absent discrimination against women, women would earn 100% of what men earn for equal work at equal hours? Given that women, on average, do better than men in school, why not assume that women would earn 115% of what men earn absent discrimination?

You could ask him what he thinks about Brexit. He's given completely contradictory statements on it so far.

Please ask why dr. Peterson is so prolific regarding his tweets? It appears to be shameless self promotion, almost negating whatever significant aspect of his shtick.

What are some of the mistakes he made as a parent? How would he outline the successful engagement with, and development of, children in general?

I've heard him say that it is illegal for the US armed forces to enlist anybody with an IQ of less than 84 (about 10% of the population) , and that this is because there is notging useful for them to do in the military, and that this proves that there is also nothing much for them to do in civilian society. What is his source for the rationale behind the law? If the problem was that they were not useful, why would congress need to pass a law preventing their enlistment? Wouldn't the armed services themselves prevent them from enlisting through their internal regulations, the same way they keep out people that don't meer physical fitness standards. It could very well be that the law is aimed at preventing the armed forces from enlisting people that are insufficiently sophisticated to understand all the implications of military service, or that would blindly follow orders that are illegal, immoral, or unconstitutional.

In terms of opinions, what accuracy rate are you aiming for?

Hello Sir,
What's your view on Occam's razor which seems to cut down a lot of supernatural claims and transcendental reality?
Thank you

A couple things come to mind:

1. What activities does he regard as "fun" which he pursues in his leisure time? I ask because it's often hard to picture him doing anything that 'normal' people would regard as 'fun'; this may be a product of how prolific he seems to be, apparently wearing a suit and giving lectures 24/7.
2. Does he still watch South Park? Some of this early lectures tie in lessons from episodes; are there any other shows or pieces of popular culture which he finds offer similar or other noteworthy guidance?
3. I always found his critiques of postmodernism* to be lacking, but I wonder if maybe he is actually critiquing a version of it as understood and 'practiced' by those he opposes within the (non-philosphy) humanities departments, which is in itself incomplete and misunderstood by its proponents, and which maybe can only best be said to be influenced by postmodernism?

*while I still haven't really even scratched the surface on it, it was actually his making it "taboo" that I decided to try to read more about it and learn what it was about, and the more I read the less I agree with him on it. However, I could see a scenario as outlined by the above question being semi-accurate.

Looking forward to the conversation.

Ask him why t would take him 40 hours to answer the question : Do you believe the Jesus Christ died and rose from the dead?

Ask about his public statement that „the idea that women were repressed throughout history is an appalling theory“.

1. What's your comments on the idea that the self is an illusion, that (in Harris' words) the I, the "thinker of thoughts in addition to the thoughts, the experiencer in addition to the experience" is an illusion? And have you met people (or do you think there may be such people) that believe this to be true and after they acknowledge this, they notice bad consequences on their mental/emotional/psychological state?

2. How can someone cure a depression triggered by someone's acknowledgement of the absurdity of the universe? Scientific advances that lead to statements like "the purpose of life is to hydrogenate carbon dioxide" or "life is nothing but an electron looking for a place to rest" that may leave someones (let's say new atheist types) in owe, but what if I find pathetic/nonsensical/distressing/stupid the fact that the only reason I write you this question right now is that few billions years ago first primitive life forms arose?

3. Your solution to life seems to be set a goal and try to reach it. What's your critique of a more nihilistic/budistic/Sam Harris-style approach: have no plans, no goals, no wishes, no desires, just "live in the moment"? You said many times we experience positive emotion as we move towards a goal, but I did not hear you very clearly going after and picking holes in this idea to remove the future from the equation (as Harris says: we should try to reach that state where the present moment is good enough so that we no longer seeking happiness in the future).

Thank you, dr Peterson!

What's the most consequential truth that you hold and that you suspect to be false? in other words: What's the weakest of your core truths?

From a recent NY Review of Books article:

"Some of Girard’s most acute ideas come from his psychology of accusation. He championed legal systems that protect the rights of the accused because he believed that impassioned accusation, especially when it gains momentum by wrapping itself in the mantle of indignation, has a potential for mimetic diffusion that disregards any considered distinction between guilt and innocence. The word “Satan” in Hebrew means “adversary” or “accuser,” and Girard insisted in his later work that there is a distinctly satanic element at work in the zeal for accusation and prosecution."

Ask him what he thinks about Girard. What is the explanatory value of Girard in relation to #MeToo? Any?

Ask him why we should look towards lobster society for moral guidance.

Jordans views on Ayn Rand. His mastery of the self vs Rands

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