Vox Day vs. Jordan Peterson, take 3

If you think I’m too hard on Taleb, in the span of just a few weeks Vox Day has written more articles about Jordan Peterson than I have written about Taleb in over two years of blogging. You really don’t want to get on Vox Day’s bad side, because he will not relent.

Vox’s biggest criticism is that Jordan Peterson is not a Christian fundamentalist nor right-wing, but Dr. Peterson has never marketed himself as either of those things. It’s only because society is so left-wing that he is branded as such, and Vox is mistakenly judging Dr. Peterson by the left’s own misconstruction of him. A second criticism is that Dr. Peterson is mentally unstable or has depression, but that amounts to little more than adhomienm attack that evades Dr. Peterson’s actual arguments. Yeah, I somewhat agree Dr. Peterson’s interpretation of truth is wishy-washy, but that does not invalidate the rest of what he has to say, such as his views on Islam, IQ, gender roles, biology, etc. Vox Day thinks he is exposing Dr. Peterson, but all he’s exposing his own pettiness. That’s why Vox is wrong that Peterson’s brand will suffer by being exposed, because Dr. Peterson’s fans–such as on Twitter, YouTube, and Reddit–don’t care if he’s not a ‘real’ Christian, because they never had such expectations of him to begin with; it’s only news to Vox that Dr. Peterson is not, apparently, Jerry Falwell or Pat Robertson. Another criticism is that Dr. Peterson is intellectually dishonest because he contradicts himself. One can see a possible contradiction between Dr. Peterson’s rule “always tell the truth..or at least don’t lie” from 12 Rules to Life and his pragmatic interpretation of truth as told in the famous Sam Harris interview. But I think what Dr. Peterson means is that there are different types off ‘truth’; for example, scientific and pragmatic. A pragmatic truth, for example, would be to not slouch. An scientific truth could be, for example, the existence of empirical gender differences. In lieu of concrete scientific truth, one defers to pragmatic truths, but also the pragmatic truths can be useful in and of themselves.