Sam Harris shoves his foot down his gullet again


Remember, Sam Harris is the atheist leader who once, when asked where all the women were at in atheism, explained it away by saying atheism lacked that “estrogen vibe” instead of noting all the women who have been leaders and who were currently hard-working activists.

I think it may have to do with my person slant as an author, being very critical of bad ideas. This can sound very angry to people..People just don’t like to have their ideas criticized. There’s something about that critical posture that is to some degree instrinsically male and more attractive to guys than to women. The atheist variable just has this – it doesn’t obviously have this nurturing, coherence-building extra estrogen vibe that you would want by default if you wanted to attract as many women as men.

He has a great big blind spot for anyone who isn’t a rich white man. So when he says bullshit like this:

A paradox for our time: The far Left is disproportionately white, wealthy, and well-educated. So extreme “wokeness” is now one of the most glaring symptoms of “white privilege.”

He’s just doing it again. It’s because all the black men and women, and Hispanic men and women, and LGBT people who have been fighting for the Left all this time are invisible to him. That far Left is awesomely diverse, while his “Intellectual Dark Web” and the alt-right are a mess of mediocre white people suckling at the teats of conservative think tanks and promoting the status quo that maintains their privilege.

But this is typical of the tin-eared pronouncements from Harris, probably the most clueless of the “Four Horsemen”, and the one who is still regarded as the premier figurehead of alt-atheism. If only this was a position he could be fired from, but he’s still propped up by a horde of white male cultists.

Comments

  1. doubtthat says

    First of all, if that’s true, it’s not a paradox. There’s nothing paradoxical about recognizing one’s own privilege.

    But of course, the hell is he talking about? Vague terms, no data. What a shit.

  2. raven says

    Sam Harris is just Jordan Peterson without being amusingly wildly incoherent.

    And like Jordan Peterson he can’t shut up and not say very stupid things.
    They’ve both blown up their credibility all by themselves with some effort on their parts.

  3. raven says

    Sam Harris uses the common tactic of internet trolls.
    He just makes assertions without proof or data and expects people to believe them.

    Harris:
    The far Left is disproportionately white, wealthy, and well-educated.

    Where is the data here?
    This is just flat out wrong.

    time.com 2018
    Overall, the center found, 39% of all women voted for Trump, while 54% supported Clinton.
    White women, who made up 41% of the electorate, went for Trump by a 2-point margin, 47% to 45%,

    The left is female by a large margin, if we define the left as voting for Democrat Hillary Clinton in the last election. The gender gap in this demographic was 13%. That is a lot.
    It’s also nonwhite. White women voted by a slight plurality for Trump.

    Harris also invents a strawperson.
    The “far left”.
    The far left all but doesn’t actually exist.
    They are numerically insignificant.
    He is conflating the far left with anyone to the right of the far right GOP, that is center, liberal, progressive, left of center.
    It’s a majority of this country.
    More data, Hillary did win the popular vote by 3 million.

  4. doubtthat says

    As far as I can tell, “far left” in Harris talk refers to people who think the historical mistreatment of minority groups affects present outcomes and requires remedy.

  5. doublereed says

    It’s not a paradox. I guess he means ironic but it would have to be true.

    It’s pretty funny to see “logical” “rationalists” throw around a word like paradox.

    But then Harris has shown time and time again that he’s just not all that bright. It’s why he hangs out with people like Dave Rubin.

  6. petesh says

    @3: If you presented this to Sam He Am, he’d immediately say, “No, I said the ‘far left’ not the mainstream left.” He’s blind to women, the poor and people of color (I don’t entirely repeat myself) but he has an apparently instinctive grasp of what common usage calls sophistry, to which he would of course reply that the Sophists were not sophists, which is technically accurate. I would no more argue with him than wrestle with a pig in shit.

  7. says

    The Harrisites will continue defending him and claiming you have not read his words in the proper context and how you have to read everything he has written since he threw up all the crayolas on a canvas at 3 yo to truly understand his greatness.

  8. says

    People just don’t like to have their ideas criticized. There’s something about that critical posture that is to some degree instrinsically male and more attractive to guys than to women.

    Reading this quote, I see an implied claim that “women, on average, are worse at critical thinking.” That would be a misogynistic insult towards women. Am I the only one who interprets this quote this way? Or do other people also see here the implication that women are worse at critical thinking?

  9. says

    Recently when discussing the Alabama abortion ban, someone claimed “Abortion mostly affects black communities*, but you only hear white people talk about it”, to which I replied “if you only see white people talking about it’s because you only pay attention to white people.”
    Same applies to Harris. I mean, the two most hated “leftist” US Democrats are women of colour…

    *They love to see themselves as saviours of black babies and frame the women and others seeking abortions as victims of racism who must be protected from said racism…

  10. Anton Mates says

    raven @3,

    I suspect Harris is basing this on (a severe misreading of) Pew’s political typology analysis. He’s equating their “Solid Left” political cluster with the “far left.” Various problems with this:

    1) Pew’s political typology is not a good measure of the intensity of political beliefs, because it’s generated from a small number of survey questions in which people make a binary choice between two statements. The “Solid Left” is “solid” in that they are more likely than other cluster to make the “liberal” choice on most survey questions, but we don’t know how strongly they agree with each choice. (This survey doesn’t ask the questions necessary to distinguish moderates from extremists on any political issue.) Thus, you can’t interpret the “Solid Left” as the “far left” in the first place.

    2) The “Solid Left” is also not more uniformly liberal than Pew’s other clusters on every issue. “Disaffected Democrats,” for instance, are majority nonwhite (and have a lower white percentage than any other cluster), and they’re actually more uniformly hostile toward big business than the “Solid Left” are.

    3) The “Solid Left” is whiter than the other liberal-leaning clusters, but it’s less white than almost every conservative-leaning cluster.

    4) The “Solid Left” is wealthier* than the other liberal-leaning clusters, but it’s slightly less wealthy than its mirror image on the other side of the spectrum, the “Core Conservatives.”

    *using an extremely granular measure of wealth, which (among other things) lumps every household making $75k+ into the same category

    5) The “Solid Left” is indeed better-educated than any other cluster, but I’m not sure why you’d call that “privilege” when the “Core Conservatives” are making the same amount of money with less education.

    So yeah, the data fails to support his “Wokeness = White Privilege” claim, and in most ways contradicts it. Par for the course with Harris.

  11. liberalhysteria says

    Empty and ineffective attempt by Harris to smear his political opponents with nananana poopooism. A rich white Male with an army of ditto heads is about as privileged as it gets, as long as you dont examine the life and career of Dwight Freeney, who was able to hone his athletic abilities while growing up in affluent Hartford, Connecticut, and leveraged his talents into a lucrative 16 season NFL career with the Indianapolis Colts.

    We will be forever proud of you Freeney. Go Colts.

  12. John Morales says

    Andreas @10:

    People just don’t like to have their ideas criticized. There’s something about that critical posture that is to some degree instrinsically male and more attractive to guys than to women.

    Reading this quote, I see an implied claim that “women, on average, are worse at critical thinking.” That would be a misogynistic insult towards women. Am I the only one who interprets this quote this way? Or do other people also see here the implication that women are worse at critical thinking?

    There is no such logical implication, but I do class it as speculative innuendo.

    Literally, to use your form of phrasing, the actual claim is “women, on average, are intrinsicallyt less predisposed to criticising others’ ideas.”, not that they’re less competent at so doing.

  13. PaulBC says

    If people of color aren’t leftwing, what does Harros think they are? They’re not for the most part voting for Republicans, Libertarians, or Nazis.

    Black voters (in aggregate) vote pragmatically in their own interest and realize American conservatism has absolutely nothing to offer them. Democrats take their vote for granted, so it’s not a great voice, but it’s not a difficult one.

    It’s true, as I understand it that black voters are more likely to be social conservatives than white liberals, and some are very religious. But they’re a consistent voting block for the left, not the right. I for one appreciate their common sense approach. We’d be sunk without them and better not forget it.

  14. PaulBC says

    “Harros” should be “Harris.” “great voice” should be “great choice” Is there no way to edit or at least delete?

  15. Rob Grigjanis says

    PaulBC @17:

    Is there no way to edit or at least delete?

    Well, there’s “preview” and “proofread” before “post comment”.

  16. chigau (違う) says

    Rob Grigjanis #18
    You mean, like, read your own comment before clincking “Post Comment”?
    srsly, dude?

  17. PaulBC says

    @chigau @Rob Grigjanis
    I normally use preview. Sorry, I was in a hurry (multitasking with kids and household distractions). I would be happy just to delete the damn comment. I haven’t posted much here in years and forgot it did not have a 5 minute edit window. These are really not uncommon. Anyway, I’ll shut up now.

  18. Rob Grigjanis says

    PaulBC @20:

    Anyway, I’ll shut up now.

    Please don’t shut up. Maybe worry less about little errors? Your meaning was clear.

  19. John Morales says

    PaulBC, seconding Rob.

    Easiest way, if typos aren’t solecisms or change the meaning, nobody will worry about it.

    (eg. “intrinsicallyt” in my previous — I didn’t preview either, but no biggie)

  20. rietpluim says

    People just don’t like to have their ideas criticized.
    Speaking from experience…

  21. Hoosier X says

    “Sam Harris just doesn’t like to have his errors noticed.”

    I fixed that for you, Mr. Harris. You’re welcome.

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