Another wrong-thinker who has been disinvited by the ‘open-minded, pro-science’ left:
Linda Gottfredson, an expert on occupational interests and intelligence, is the latest disinvited speaker. (She's also on a McCarthyite list of "extremists" by the Southern Poverty Law Ctr, once a respected civil rights org., now aggressively illiberal.) https://t.co/7DDmbobr8q
— Steven Pinker (@sapinker) October 14, 2018
This is why ‘we’ (as rationalists, reactionaires, conservatives, or anyone who supports the dissemination of the ‘truth’) should support Steven Pinker.
Some critics say:
“Pinker believes in ‘Enlightenment values’ so therefore he’s a liberal and should be disregarded.” So what. If his values and beliefs are mostly correct, then what difference does it make what you call it. When it comes to opposing the irrationality of democracy, collectivism, and populism, it’s actually ‘enlightenment people’ such as Pinker, Bryan Caplan, and Kevin Williamson who are the ‘real’ reactionaries. That’s the funny irony. I often see Josh Brown and other classical/neo-liberals praising Martin Luther and the Gutenberg press as ‘liberating’ Europe from Catholic ‘tyranny’, and this is construed as far-left liberalism, but it’s not left-liberalism. These people, much like reactionaries, also oppose democracy and collectivism. They see the election of Trump as evidence of the failure of democracy and populism.
“Nassim Tooleb says Pinker is a charlatan.” Although for reason that defy logic, Nassim Tooleb has been ingratiated by the far-right, but he’s a bigger liberal than either Pinker or Jordan Peterson and is an outspoken opponent of HBD and IQ research. Taleb, for all his conservative credibly, has never spoken out against gay marriage, pre-marital sex, out of wedlock births, single mothers, and other culture topics. He supports left-wing Islam and is a moral relativist.
“Pinker is wrong about the decline of violence.” As discussed in the posts The American Tradition of Waging Culture War and Peter Turchin is wrong about Crisis, America has always been divided over cultural issues, and there was more violence and unrest decades ago, but the reason why it seems like there is more unrest today is because social media and the 24-7 news cycle amplifies occurrences of unrest that decades ago would have gone unreported, and also because the outrage engendered by social media amplifies such reporting. A campus protest becomes front-page news plastered all over Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, CNN, and Fox, whereas decades ago it would have been ignored or gotten much less attention. The empirical evidence favors Pinker’s thesis, but the methodology can make the difference. Just tweaking some variables can change the conclusion. What counts as violence: an event or regime? Taleb’s counterargument is less convincing, since it is based on his assumption that violent death has an incalculable variance. this my be true but is of no use. it’s like, yeah, so what. Typical argument from ignorance on his part.