A few years ago, I tried listening to Jordan Peterson debating Marxism with Slavoj Žižek. It soon became clear to me that Peterson was completely unprepared: he knew next to nothing about Marxism. Or, perhaps, he was deliberately playing the ignoramus.
In July 2022, Jordan Peterson offered his view on the Russian invasion of Ukraine (transcript). It can be charitably described as an appeaser’s rant or a contrarian’s delirium. Less charitably, a traitor’s call on his countrymen and their allies to surrender.
Utterly ridiculous? Sure. Scarily influential? Possibly. But there’s not much new about Peterson. Consider this:
It is impossible to understand it [the war] without knowing at least a few precedent historic events, which mark the cycle of combat. No man can understand it without knowing at least a few facts and their chronological sequence.
The war is PART of the age-old struggle between the usurer and the rest of mankind: between the usurer and peasant, the usurer and producer, and finally between the usurer and the merchant, between usurocracy and the mercantilist system.
I am opposed! I believe that no American should kill or be killed in order to maintain the fetish value of metal, of ANY metal.
And of course Britain is to blame:
A weak and cowardly nation invokes the aid of savages to crush a rising more honest power…
That means Britain allying with the Soviets to crush Nazi Germany, the “rising more honest power.”
England makes war to HAVE war, war being the maximum sabotage. And without sabotage on this scale it was impossible by 1939 to create scarcity, and without scarcity no monopoly, and without monopoly of goods, or more particularly of money itself, extortion is difficult.
In other words, the British caused WWII, not the Nazis. That’s the gist. And from here, on to outright defeatism and pro-Axis propaganda:
The Americans in French Africa have not a clear conscience. There are probably no Americans in North Africa with a clear conscience, though there may be some with no conscience whatever…
I think quite simply and definitely that the American troops in N. Africa, all of ’em ought to go back to America: IF they can get there.
America ought not to be making war on Europe, and America knows it.
I have seen two responses to Peterson’s diatribe, by Cathy Young and David French, neither of whom I would normally quote in support of my views. But this time, Young hits the mark with these comments:
As the cherry on top, Peterson mentions the neofascist crank Aleksandr Dugin as a “genuine philosopher” whose influence on Putin supposedly shows the Russian leader’s authentic interest in “philosophical and theological” matters.
I’ve written about Dugin before, too much perhaps. Cathy Young sums him up nicely – him and Jordan Peterson:
…Dugin is either a kooky, occultism-obsessed prophet of Russian imperialism or a mega-troll whose public persona is a kind of performance art. (Of course, in truly postmodern fashion, it is possible that he is some combination of both.) The bottom line is that if you take Dugin seriously as a “philosopher,” you’ve well and truly jumped the shark.
Word! This is the genuine philosopher at work, lecturing. Not a fake.