ContraPoints does it again

This is a phenomenal deconstruction of the incoherence of Jordan Peterson — I do wonder if some of her sarcasm is going to sail right over the heads of the people she’s criticizing, though. This thing is full of post-modern neo-Marxist dogwhistles (oops, I just did it, too.)

Also, even though she strongly criticizes academia, I know very few people who are as entertainingly soaking in academic culture as ContraPoints. A lot of what makes her so informative is the constructive tension in her arguments.


  1. lotharloo says

    I saw this a few days ago and I very much enjoyed it. She makes a lot of good points but the one I enjoyed a lot is that Peterson and his ilk make a lot of comments that isolated from their context, they are true and innocent such as “There are biological differences between men and women” but they make them in the context of social issues, e.g., pay gap. Then, once they are challenged, they can try to strawman their opposition by claiming, “SJW don’t think there is any biological differences between men and women! LUL!”

  2. Phrenomythic Productions says

    Yes, it’s well-thought through to try to both keep JP fanboys engaged enough while at the same time pulling apart his wacky ideas. She’s also definitely winning me over with her videos on the ills of capitalism, which I’m becoming increasingly disillusioned with (capitalism that is).

  3. says

    Peterson is scared of anything beyond his precious little fantasy of a straight laced 1950’s style society, but thinks he is being clever enough to hide this fact with pretentiously incoherent psychobabble.

  4. Mobius says

    Curiously, right before seeing this post I was watching a video of Bionic Dance deconstructing another Youtube video of Jordan Peterson. In that one, he was saying that atheists are actually Christians because they have morals.

    Yeah, I don’t get it either.

    I am beginning to think that despite his high blown word salad, Jordan Peterson deserves Monty Python’s Twit of the Year Award.

  5. Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says

    I’ve had worse evenings.


  6. anbheal says

    Usually if there’s any vid over about 4 minutes, I say “screw that”. But she hooks you immediately, and reels you in. It’s worth the whole 28 minutes. She’s very good. Surprised I never heard of her until today.

  7. says

    Was i really 28min? I didn’t notice, and I hate long-winded youtube videos. She’s brilliant, just enough quirky humor without descending into pure silliness.

  8. flange says

    I didn’t, and still don’t understand modernism, post-modernism, or post-modern neo-Marxism—or care. I hadn’t read or heard Jordan Peterson. I say none of this with pride.
    But I’m pretty sure now I dislike Jordan Peterson. He must be like an academic David Brooks.
    One thing Peterson’s wrong about—anyone who’s sat in an HR office knows that HR’s first concerns are not social justice, diversity, etc. It’s preservation of the corporate being.
    That woman is smart and funny!

  9. says

    I rarely watch video links longer than three or four minutes, but I went for it about as soon as I saw the still, and only hesitated briefly on seeing how long it would be, and it paid off for me. She knows how to keep it interesting with just the right amount of lobster.

  10. hemidactylus says

    Great video. She seduces Peterson in the tub and pours milk on his face. Might take some time to unpack that image.

    I am still going with Peterson as Pied Piper of Hamelin. He starts off helping the IDWs with the problematic infestation of SJW rats (common enemy), but he starts leading the infantilized audience of IDWs such as Harris fans into the Platonic cave of Jungian beliefs. I have already posted about how Harris seems to feel paternalistic toward audience (Dennett interview).

    Scary thought that freethought is scary and leads people into shackling themselves to a charismatic leader instead of actually thinking for themselves. But how do you think for yourself when you are as much a media creation as the characters on Seinfeld? After reading Adorno, Horkheimer, and Fromm I realize thoughts are manufactured commodities. Ironically enough Jung’s essay on cryptomnesia is so very apt. Who can have an original thought?

    How much did steel manning and Rapoport’s rules uptick after the Dennett interview amongst the so called freethought folks. I think I might have gone off piste.

  11. leerudolph says

    I think I might have gone off piste.

    Better off piste than pissed off, I suppose.

  12. paxoll says

    Great video, but way to generous to Peterson. The guy was a clinical psychologist and then a lecturing professor for years. Which in my book means he has his ideas and talking points down pat, so when he manipulates and gas lights his audience/opponent, he is doing so with intent and dishonesty.

  13. lotharloo says

    I’m not sure if he is truly dishonest or just stupidly religious and right winger. It’s very difficult to distinguish between the two!

  14. unclefrogy says

    she is very entertaining and insightful
    I especially like her critique of they are trying to destroy western civilization.
    He has no idea what western civilization actually is or how it got that way and surely never asked any serious questions about it.
    just code words for the establish order.
    god save the f’n king
    uncle frogy

  15. hemidactylus says

    Here is a pretty decent analysis of Jungian archetypes and how Peterson employs them:

    Note how Harris worst cases archetypes, likening them to an Akashic record. Some people may think in such terms, but archetypes could just as easily be considered in Lamarckian or evolutionary psychological terms. Harris does this. He similarly worst cases people who hold to Hume’s guillotine in Moral Landscape.

    The second point about the Rationality Rules video is where the host considers Peterson’s appeal as father figure to disaffected white males. That’s interesting. Peterson markets himself as ascended master who has profoundest insight and is thus somewhat esoteric. In order to become more like the master you must hang on every word of Wisdom from your lobster daddy. He also outgroups a shadow figure, the evil pomos or regressive cultural Marxists as analyzed by ContraPoints, the same enemy he shares with Harris et al. Nothing cements an ideology as strongly as a bogey.

    That he has gotten Harris, his audience, and the Rationality Rules guy to ponder archetypes shows his fishing skills as he sets his hook. Matthew 4:18.

    The wannabe new Joseph Campbell?

  16. hemidactylus says

    I have also been considering what Erich Fromm had to say about the “personified magic helper” in Escape from Freedom. Peterson’s appeal could be an example of this quirk where people seek guidance from elevated others and project childish needs for a parental figure. They refer to this as transference when an analysand becomes bonded in such a way to the analyst.

    I think this is a common phenomenon. What aspiring new atheist didn’t devour Daddy Dawkins’ every edict and extend such loving devotion to Harris and others? A set up for disappointment when ticking time bomb scenarios are considered or Dear Muslima is penned.

    ““If the magic helper is personified in an actual person, the disappointment that follows when he falls short of what one is expecting from this person—and since the expectation is an illusory one, any actual person is inevitably disappointing—in addition to the resentment resulting from one’s own enslavement to that person, leads to continuous conflicts. These sometimes end only with separation, which is usually followed by the choice of another object who is expected to fulfill all hopes connected with the magic helper.”
    Escape from Freedom
    Erich Fromm

    Are new atheists above such proclivities?

  17. petesh says

    I agree with unclefrogy @16. Peterson is just a tool to focus what is really critique of something much broader and more important. (Well, also, Peterson is just a tool.) And I am very sympathetic too and amused by ContraPoint’s reaction to academia!

  18. Scientismist says

    Lobsters? Really? Is this a common argument made by shellfish bullies.. err.. conservative intellectuals.. err.. right-wing idiots? Is this just Peterson, or must we conclude that even the most elementary critical thinking is becoming a lost art in certain circles?

    The “Lobster Queen” bit is beautiful (“Therefore let not the power of our crustacean sovereignty be anywise impugned.”), and an explicit reference to Marie Antoinette just might help a few crusty conservatives to (ahem) keep their heads about them. I mean, you could just point out the logical and ethical incoherence of Peterson’s blatant appeal to a naturalistic fallacy (Observation: big lobsters, which are natural, beat up on little lobsters to establish a hierarchy; Conclusion: any hierarchies established in human social behavior, such as unequal pay for women or oppression of minorities, must also be natural and therefor good and immune to criticism). But the shockingly blithe and unapologetic way Peterson tries to make that argument in the clip that ContraPoints includes, makes one wonder if perhaps this may already have been brought to Peterson’s attention but it just bounced right off his pseudo-intellectual carapace.

    The virtue of “Western” values, it always seemed to me, lay in its history of flexibility, its capability of eventually learning from the mistakes of history, rather than in enshrining and worshiping both the mistakes and strengths of the past and never learning anything beyond what the lobsters discovered worked for them 350 million years ago. Now there’s some real conservatism! Maybe the milk bath will soften him up enough to at least bring him into the age of the mammals.

  19. logicalcat says

    Is he dumb or does he know what he’s doing? Well both, but okay if I have to choose one I think I’m going with “knows what he’s doing”. On account that he used to use the phrase “cultural marxism” until he realized it was a nazi conspiracy and choose to rebrand it as “post-modern neo marxists”. Its teh same shit. This rebranding shows me that he knows full well what he is doing.

  20. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Viva the Lobster Queen, hopefully with one of her claws in the right place on JP. I might even hear his screams in Chiwaukee, a long way away.