Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Neither Hot Nor Cold


Revelation 3: 14 “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:

The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Origin of the creation of God, says this:

15 ‘I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. 16 So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will vomit you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have no need of anything,” and you do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked

I watched the first fifteen minutes of Jordan Peterson’s discussion with Gad Saad.  That was that.  Before coming to this video, and its short hold on my interest, a review of some of the work Peterson has done since his return from his illness.

The first of these discussions which I commented on was with Douglas Murray – two people that in the past would have held quite an interest for me.  It was clear that both men were working to distance themselves from the right – the same right that has placed both men on the map.

A false position was offered by Peterson, regarding those who believe the recent presidential election was a fraud: you have to believe that the entire US establishment is corrupt, and that Donald Trump is a saint.  It is total nonsense, of course, as one can view the system as corrupt and Trump far less than perfect.  So, no, you don’t have to believe Trump is a saint if you believe the election was fraudulent.

There was no discussion about truth, only about the need to keep faith in the institutions.  An interesting point coming from someone who broke on the stage on the back of dealing with the meaning crisis – without truth, meaning in life is impossible; I should say: without truth, life is impossible.

I held some sympathy for Peterson after this video (albeit, while watching most of it, I was unable to finish it); the man came off of what seemed to be a very debilitating illness.  As he said, he has had his bravery beaten out of him.  I get it.

The second of these discussions which I commented on was with Matt Ridley.  Despite Ridley (and, increasingly, Peterson) focusing solely on the material gains since the Enlightenment, Ridley does note that he is slipping into pessimism regarding various government energy policies.

Peterson will have none of that: don’t go there.  Despite whatever is true of governmental policies, we need to uphold the story.  We need to put our faith in man.  This used to be a problem for Peterson, who always said we had to look up for meaning.  Now, he says we must look down.

Well, the current discussion with Gad Saad…fifteen minutes and I quit.  Peterson asks Saad: why are you focused on the extremes of the left?  Saad explains himself.  But why are you focused on the extremes of the left?  Saad tries again, using an analogy.  Yeah, but why are you focused on the extremes of the left?

This was then followed by Peterson once again offering his analysis of those who believe the recent US election was fraudulent: you have to believe that the entire US establishment is corrupt, and that Donald Trump is a saint. 

Peterson was made rich, and became wealthy, on the back of his discussion of meaning.  This loss of meaning is inextricably linked to the success of the left in destroying language, destroying gender, destroying truth.  Peterson understood this, and it is for this reason that he gained some traction with those who hold to conservative and Christian values.

Peterson understood that there was a downside to the Enlightenment, that the gains in materialism must be weighed against the loss of meaning.

Both of these he has thrown away.  I am not sure what his unique selling proposition now is, other than trading on the name he made for himself in his skyrocket to fame.


Peterson is trying very hard to get in the good graces of those who control polite conversation – polite meaning acceptable with all the right people.  He will fail.  He has demonstrated that he can’t be trusted; he is responsible for bring to the broader public a conversation that is not allowed.

He will succeed at alienating many of those who found him a consistent voice – not perfectly so, by any stretch (the topic of Faith Goldy came up, unapologetically, in the short part of this video) – but consistent by most human standards.  

He had already alienated the mainstream academia and media; he now discards meaning and truth.  What is left worth listening to?  Nothing much that I can tell.

I have heard that Peterson will be talking with Jonathan Pageau.  I will watch that discussion.  I am pretty sure that I can count on one of the participants remaining consistent, and I look forward to seeing how Pageau responds to Peterson’s change.


  1. I can't BLAME him for being discouraged.
    However, I am very disappointed.

    1. Somebody just needs to tell him to clean his room eh.

    2. Dear Texas Libertarian, This is Peggy writing and I don't recall if it was you who mentioned the Flashman books here on this site, but if it was, I thank you for I enjoyed all 12 volumes very much and have saved them to read again in a year or two. Peg in Oregon

  2. Hes a Judas goat.Just like Limbaugh. Great article

    Owyhee cowboy

  3. Maybe he had some conversations privately? Some people dropped by and explained to him what he will say once he gets back in public? Maybe with some explanation of what will happen if he doesn't?

    Not sure. But I have no reason to listen to him and anyone else he becomes part of the chorus of propaganda.

  4. It is as if the flood is coming, the water is 3' deep and Noah's wife says to him, "What if we have a drought? Does building this boat encourage a drought?"

  5. Owen Benjamin (and Sagunto) set me straight on Peterson a few years ago. His betrayal of Faith Goldy and his idiotic recommendation to Kavanaugh only confirmed it. Peterson, as Owen is apt to say, is a wizard. A wizard is basically one who will mislead others with fancy words and turns of phrase which often sound good but have nasty consequences in reality.

    "The use of fashions in thought is to distract men from their real dangers. We direct the fashionable outcry of each generation against those vices of which it is in the least danger, and fix its approval on the virtue that is nearest the vice which we are trying to make endemic. The game is to have them all running around with fire extinguishers whenever there’s a flood; and all crowding to that side of the boat which is already nearly gone under." - C.S. Lewis (Screwtape Letters)

    Say what you want about Owen and his (mmm.. lack of) understanding of the natural world, but his intuition about people is usually dead on. His consistent advise to people is on point as well: 1) get married, 2) have kids, 3) be faithful, 4) own some land, 5) raise animals, 6) don't watch porn, and 7) get right with God. He might be a little too hard on the Jews, though he has remained friends with Dave Smith, but the Jews have, over the ages, earned some just criticism (as Dave would admit). Kudos to him for having the balls to touch this 'third rail' of modern life in entertainment.

    "This used to be a problem for Peterson, who always said we had to look up for meaning. Now, he says we must look down."

    As always, no one says it better than Chesterton:

    "By insisting specially on the immanence of God we get introspection, self-isolation, quietism, social indifference – Tibet. By insisting specially on the transcendence of God we get wonder, curiosity, moral and political adventure, righteous indignation – Christendom. Insisting that God is inside man, man is always inside himself. By insisting that God transcends man, man has transcended himself.”

    1. The internal battle Peterson faced, between his place in life (liberal academic professor) and what he had discovered through his work (the Bible had meaning, humans have a nature, and what was deducible from these) was always present. Call it the battle between his intellect and his soul.

      I think what is clear is now we see which side won.

      I do want to see his conversation with Pageau. Unless this offers a movement back toward where his soul was taking him, it will likely be the last for me.

  6. His twitter of the last few days isn't timid. He isn't in James Lindsay territory, but he's not musing about the right being about to take over and -- stop CRT from being mandated.

  7. It is easy to mistake Peterson trying to steel man the other side.