Friday, May 04, 2018

Having Upgraded His Wardrobe and Paid in Full - Jordan Peterson's 15 Minutes Nearly Over...,


WaPo |  The world is wretched with weak men. Slouchers, slackers, chumps, low-status dudes who have amassed a crumpled pile of inferior habits and made the world a messier place. 

Or so Jordan Peterson will tell you. But fear not, the doctor is here to help, preaching his thoroughly footnoted gospel of order and discipline, one rule at a time — in a popular book, in lectures far from his ivory tower roost and, most potently, on YouTube.

The man of the moment, the self-proclaimed “professor against political correctness,” sits in his Manhattan hotel aerie before another sold-out talk based on his best-selling “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.” The University of Toronto clinical psychologist also sold out his date at Washington’s Warner Theatre on Friday, so he’ll return next month to lecture there again. Plenty of men are listening. Even Kanye West, who amid his still-unspooling existential crisis on Twitter, shared an image of his computer screen, on which a tab for a Peterson video was visible. 

Peterson elicits nearly every opinion except indifference. “The most influential public intellectual in the Western world right now,” wrote David Brooks in the New York Times, calling him “a young William F. Buckley.” Critics, and there are plenty, raise serious doubts.

“He takes a really simplistic approach toward gender inequality. It feels like a dressed-up version of misogyny,” says Gary Barker, a developmental psychologist who has studied ways to promote gender equality and violence prevention. “The scary part is it doesn’t provoke men to be better but to live with this inequality and get what you can out of it.”

Peterson rails against victimhood and “radical left-wing identity politics.” He’s an opponent of regulated equality and a skeptic of the notion of male or white “privilege.” Like many thought leaders who flirted with socialism in their youth, Peterson crusades against anything that he thinks smacks of Marxist tendencies and groupthink, which means a lot of inveighing against “postmodernist” scholars, who are probably a bigger nuisance at faculty confabs than in the lives of his fans.