Sunday: Hili dialogue

November 6, 2022 • 6:30 am

Greeetings on Sunday, Novembe 6, 2022: remember that the time changed last night, so if you didn’t set your clocks back, you missed out on an hour of sleep. I’ll be taking an early flight to Chicago as you read this.

First Hili, and then a few photos of the day. It’s been a long conference but I met some interesting people. The Panel of the Canceled, the last panel of the day, comprising four academics were fired or under severe sanctions for their views, was both scary and sad. But more about that later.

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is taking up space:

A: You are sitting on my notebook.
Hili: It doesn’t bother me.
In Polish:
Ja: Siedzisz na moim zeszycie.
Hili: Mnie to nie przeszkadza.
From the Auschwitz Memorial:


A few shots of Stanford. First, the Hoover Tower, the landmark building of Stanford.

The Stanford Memorial Church:

A copy of Rodin’t “Burghers of Calais” at Stanford.  This is not one of the 12 cast originals but a copy. These men surrendered themselves to be executed, wearing nooses around their necks, but, as the story goes, their lives were spared.

The only student protest of the conference: a few signs painted on the sidewalk. I’m not sure what this means, but the response should be “academic freedom for all academics, and freedom of speech for everyone in college.”

Steve Pinker talked about rationality and academic freedom; his talk was drawn largely from his latest book on rationality but had updated examples relevant to the conference.

Four ways of looking at Jordan Peterson. Peterson, live on stage had a 45-minute with Douglas Murray, who was on Zoom in England, and it was pretty good, though Jordan got emotional and a bit religious at the end. The subject? “The War on the West.

Regardless of what you think of Peterson, you’ve got to hand it to the man: he’s good with words.

The last panel of the day, “The Cost of Dissent” and a sad one. Four of these academics (on the left side) have either been fired, demonized or sanctioned by their institution, mostly for their words.  Readers can judge their “guilt”, but remember that nobody is supposed to be fired or disciplined for out of the classroom speech. Left to right: Francis Widdowson, Elizabeth Weiss, Amy Wax, Joshua Katz, and moderator Harald Uhlig—a non-canceled colleague.


61 thoughts on “Sunday: Hili dialogue


    A plainer clue in the casebook of Sherlock Holmes will not be found.

    Yes, protesters will have painted messages to disturb the thoughts of the public, but observe – this paint is not easily removed. Only rigorous work and products will restore the original granitoid material below. The stencil itself is crude, crafted from 98 weight paper, some 3% oak, if I am not mistaken, and a right hand held the stencil while the left sprayed a Krylon brand semi-gloss, as the painter themselves had run out of flat, being occupied in the business of replacement handrails.

    Come, Watson, the game is afoot!

    1. It should be “whom”, so that rules me out, Ernest Hemingway, fellow pedants, and dare I say it the well educated.

        1. “Ah, Watson!” Holmes shouted, his pipe flying into the wash basin.

          “The White Haired Organization! Mrs. Judson, we will be late!”

          [ referring to A.C. Doyle’s The Red-Headed League ]

      1. It should be “whom”, so that rules me out, Ernest Hemingway, fellow pedants, and dare I say it the well educated.

        Technically, Papa had John Donne to thank for getting that pronoun in its proper objective case. 🙂

  2. Wax’s comments are truly repugnant. Scientists can get wacky as they get older – water has memory, people need megadoses of vitamins. Does this happen in other ares?

    1. As an Asian there’s nothing that keeps me at arms length from the anti-woke movement like the presence and lack of condemnation of people like Amy Wax. This is despite me wanting to get closer to anti-woke causes but people like her show the same racial essentialism as the woke do, just in the other direction.

      I eagerly await a true liberal alternative.

      1. I watched this panel and was not familiar with Amy Wax, but now that I’ve had a chance to look up her transgression, I condemn her outrageous remarks as racist. Her dean spoke out against her views and from what I gather, she has not been cancelled, only called out for her odious behavior. She is still the Robert Mundheim Professor of Law at U Penn. Of those on this panel, Wax seems to be an example of free speech working as it should. She said her piece, and others have countered with their views (including Glenn Loury, on whose podcast she made her remarks). The SJW crowd has called for her to be fired (not surprisingly) but she remains in her position and has demonstrated to the world that she hates Democrats and is a racist. If I were on a hiring committee for her next gig, this is useful information to know and would certainly be disqualifying to her candidacy. But I am a nobody, and so my dismissal and condemnation of Amy Wax (and other racists) isn’t worth all that much.

        1. I agree with everything you’ve just said except “I am a nobody, and so my dismissal and condemnation of Amy Wax (and other racists) isn’t worth all that much.” In my opinion it’s worth a lot, here’s why:

          – For starters, it helps assuage the concern I described in my first comment. I also suspect there others with similar concerns to mine who will also be assuaged if they were to read it.
          – If we’re to condemn the SJWs for their regressive attitudes towards race we need to be consistent about race in order to have any moral authority on the matter, lest we be hypocrites. I believe your dismissal moves towards that ideal.
          – If we don’t draw clear lines in the sand about these matters then we’re inviting people in who may wish to cross those lines.
          – More broadly, if one believes something is wrong I think they should speak up about it, even if they are a “nobody” as you describe. Of course we can’t all go around condemning every slight injustice in the world but I think if it’s relevant and/or particularly egregious then it’s worth doing and in my opinion that applies here.

          1. I was not aware of Amy Wax, but now she has had the “oxygen of publicity” I shall have to look her up.
            I actually thought to comment on the (possibly) unconscious link between the Burghers of Calais and the panel of condemned/cancelled academics, but maybe one of them deserves the noose, metaphorically, of course.

            1. Due diligence done. Seems to fall exactly into the “Freedom of speech is my right to say exactly what you don’t want to hear” category. That doesn’t just cover the case of inconvenient truthsayers, it includes those who are downright wrong, and among them some are mistaken and some are malicious. We have to let them all speak if we are to have the same privilege, and we can use our speech to correct them. We need have no truck with infant school notions of words hurting people.
              I find it curious (perhaps peculiarly American*), that she has had the most criticism for saying the things where she has statistics firmly on her side (8% of black students are in the top half of her law class – should be 50% all things being equal); it might be unmannerly to say it out loud but one cannot ignore facts. She has had less criticism for the non-factual opinion-based comments that are most revealing about her character—better off with fewer Asians, Indians ought not complain about the USA, the role of resentment, shame and envy against the west. She has no ‘facts’ to base all that stuff on. That’s all an indication of what goes on in her head, and she would have been wiser if she had kept it there.
              *You guys do seem rather relaxed about anti-Asian prejudice compared to your understandable hypersensitivity about the anti-black kind. You have reputable schools with actual policies that are designed to keep out Asians? In the 21st century? How do you think the future will judge that one, eh? It will be in the dock right alongside the “take this crate of nitroglycerine into the mine – Bang! – Get me another Chinaman!”

  3. 1860 – Abraham Lincoln is elected the 16th president of the United States with only 40% of the popular vote, defeating John C. Breckinridge, John Bell, and Stephen A. Douglas in a four-way race

    So even back then, Republican presidential candidates couldn’t get a majority of the popular vote.

    1. The elections of 1860 and 2020 are similar in that large segments of the population did not “accept” the results. But, there is a crucial difference that makes parallels between the two elections not very convincing. The secessionists of 1860 and 1861 were not “election deniers” as the term is understood today. That is, they did not deny that Lincoln was elected by the rules of the game. Rather, they considered Lincoln’s ascendancy to the presidency as so antithetical to their interests that leaving the country was the only feasible action. In contrast, today’s election deniers claim that Biden was elected by fraud. While actual secessionists are relatively rare today (centered in Texas), we can expect secessionist sentiment to significantly grow if and when the far right feels that its chance for political power is gone for good. However, if the polls are correct, the secessionist movement will be muted for at least the next two years. But for the hard core its dormancy will end if the political structure of the nation should turn leftward.

      1. While the 1860 election sparked secession and the resultant war, at least there was a peaceful transition of power from James Buchanan’s administration to Abraham Lincoln’s. It took 2020 and the deviant character of Donald Trump to break this nation’s proud 224-year tradition in that regard.

    2. How many British or Canadian MPs of whatever political stripe win majorities in their ridings when there are more than two candidates, Jeremy?

  4. While it was good , as another commenter said friday regarding anna krylov, to put a face and personality to many of the speakers whom I only knew by reading them (even the odious Scott Atlas), I thought the main value of this event was to raise the visibility of freedom of speech and academic freedom as it is under attack in a number of our universities. As they have added majors that might be better identified as job training and developed modern business structures of levels of deans and vice-presidents, the culture and purpose of a number of universities has slowly but steadily morphed from what those of us who attended or came to teach in the 60’s and early 70’s assumed. Now of course the nature of the university changed from the church-run institutions of the 1300’s to 1700’s, to the more secular institutions of higher education through the enlightenment (jefferson had to create the university of virginia as he found it impossible to get the college of william and mary out from under the thumb of the anglican church), adding expertise of the industrial revolution and democratization of the student bodies at our great land grant universities in the late 1800’s. As weheard from several speakers, access to dollars has changed over the past 50 years and the structure of numerous schools has changed to capture that change, moving away from the focus that many of us have internalized during the mid 20th century as…well..what a right and proper university is. So maybe boards of regents or visitors want these changes and the losses are part of the cost…a casualty of war. Or maybe the policy-makers are unaware of the cost and these types of events can make them visible to the boards – for the boards are where action must be taken.

    Thanks for the connection, Jerry!

    1. I have the feeling that universities need to be stripped of some of their prestige, especially the Ivory League ones. Perhaps there needs to be greater societal investment in training schools and technical colleges, to ensure that a degree from a “proper” university won’t be necessary to get a good job. As it is, a lot of wokism is spawned at Ivory League schools, perhaps as a privilege-defense mechanism. Perhaps it would be better if we had a stronger network of excellent regional training schools and colleges and the Ivy Leagues went back to being regarded as finishing schools for the elite.

      1. Agree with the first part. Strongly disagree with the second. An indoctrinated elite that is singularly undiverse in knowledge, experience and outlook because they all studied they same kinds of subjects (law/international politics) in the same promiscuous little rich people’s world is precisely what one should try not to have, so strip the Ivies of that function.

  5. One person whom I want n e v e r to forget = Ms Vashti Cromwell ( McCollum ), mother.
    WHAT a H E R O … … SHE.

    ” On this date in 1912, champion of the First Amendment Vashti McCollum, née Cromwell, was born in Lyons, New York, the daughter of Arthur G. and Ruth Cromwell. Arthur was a noted atheist activist in Rochester. Vashti was named by her mother for the biblical character who was “the first exponent of woman’s rights.” She studied at Cornell and the University of Illinois but on the verge of graduation married John Paschal (“Pappy”) McCollum in 1934. He was a University of Illinois horticulture department professor. They had three children before she completed her degree in political science and law in 1944.

    The couple’s idyllic life as a faculty family in Champaign changed radically when their oldest boy, Jim, entered the fourth grade and was pressured to participate in religious instruction. When she withdrew Jim from the class, he was put in what amounted to detention. After filing suit to stop the unconstitutional instruction, she lost her job at the university and was branded “that awful McCollum woman.” The family became pariahs to much of the community.

    Despite losing at both the trial and appellate levels, McCollum did not give up. On March 8, 1948, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a decision delivered by Justice Hugo Black, vindicated her in an 8-1 decision that is still precedent. She wrote her classic account One Woman’s Fight in 1951 and went on to serve two terms as president of the American Humanist Association and received its distinguished service award.

    McCollum earned her master’s degree in mass communication as a returning student and by the late 1950s became a world traveler, often going “surface,” visiting nearly 150 countries and all seven continents, including Antarctica. She was an FFRF honorary officer, was featured in the foundation’s 1988 film “Champions of the First Amendment” and was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.

    The New York Times, Los Angeles Times and major British newspapers all carried stories of her death in 2006 at age 93.

    “Between being praised and persecuted, condoned and condemned, I might understandably have become bewildered, particularly at the brand of ethics sometimes displayed by the staunch defenders of Christianity. But of one thing I am sure: I am sure that I fought not only for what I earnestly believed to be right, but for the truest kind of religious freedom intended by the First Amendment, the complete separation of church and state.”

    — Vashti Cromwell McCollum, “One Woman’s Fight” (1951) ”

    I never birthed daughters. Had I, then her name ‘ld ‘ve been … … Ms Vashti Hypatia.


  6. “academic freedom for all academics, and freedom of speech for everyone in college.”

    How does this work exactly?
    Are those participating in discussions held to the same level of accountability (students vs. professors)?
    Can a professor deny the Holocaust then?
    Can a professor deny evolution?
    Can a professor say something discriminatory like women should be silent in public?
    Can a professor say the Quran is divinely inspired?

    How do we lawfully order the following?
    religious freedom
    freedom of speech
    human rights code
    academic freedom

    1. The laws about what faculty can say or not say in class vary from place to place, as Eugene Volokh said yesterday. No, you’re not free to teach creaitonism in public universities because it violates the First Amendment. But outside of class everybody has their same first amendment rights. Anybody can deny the Holocaust if they want.

      You ask a lot of questions. Why don’t you give your own answers rather than asking me? You might learn something by looking up what the law says about these issues.

      1. Touché…

        I was curious how other readers and institutions handle these types of situations. Hence the questions. Apologies.

        As a college instructor in Canada, I would find myself in a series of pointed, administrative discussions if I tried to deny the Holocaust or evolution, or if I said something discrimintory.

        I believe this is what happened with Jordan Peterson and why it still raises questions. Jordan invoked freedom of speech to not use a gender preference while the institution was looking at it from a discriminatory perspective. Which one trumps the other? And that is why I asked all those questions. 😥

        1. Seriously, since you have skin in the game, you should look into how your own institution views those controversial utterances, rather than asking for general guidance about what “ought” to be.

          Unless you have tenure, employment is, in general, at the pleasure of the employer. It can fire you for any reason (provided the reason doesn’t violate the Human Rights Code) or for no reason at all. There are common-law expectations for severance in lieu of notice. Firing for cause, (where neither notice nor severance needs to be given) is much harder to make stick if the fired employee sues. It’s usually easier just to give the troublesome employee a few months severance and tell him to get lost. If you are covered under a collective agreement, that, too, will shape what the university/college does when people complain about you. Your faculty association may or may not assist you vigorously in the grievance process. If it has been taken over by the Woke, it will not lift a finger and will probably collude with administration in getting rid of you.

          No comment on Peterson’s specific situation. It is very likely that a university in Canada would regard refusal to respect a pronoun preference as not covered under academic freedom of speech. Two reasons:

          1) Freedom of speech in Canada is, like all our Charter rights, subject to such limitations as reasonably necessary in a just and equitable society, or words to that mealy-mouthed effect. (That’s why our hate-speech laws survive.) And that’s just in regards to laws passed by Parliament or a provincial legislature. It is not at all clear that non-governmental organizations, including those almost entirely dependent on government funding and established by Acts of the provincial legislature (like universities), must respect freedom of speech, as in the States.

          2) Discrimination under Human Rights legislation, which in Canada includes gender identity, is taken very seriously by organizations as they will be liable themselves for awards by complainants if they don’t police the speech of their employees. They couldn’t care less about your freedom of speech if they (not you) get whacked with a judgment from a Human Rights tribunal for many thousands of dollars because you misgendered someone. Unless you are famous or tenured or someone they are afraid of, they will fire your butt in a New York minute if a student complains and you are not abjectly repentant.

          If you are new at this, you must get to know this stuff cold before you get into trouble.

          1. Thank you for your words here. I read them twice. It sounds like the words freedom of speech don’t really mean freedom. Maybe reasoned speech would fit better since the Charter of Rights can override freedom of speech.

            I’ll also talk to HR. Thanks again.

  7. I listen to Peterson a minimum of five nights a week. The man is a maestro with words and ideas, and probably Canada’s most misunderstood man.

    1. I read Peterson’s book, and that is when I knew he was an anomaly. This guy clearly supports what billions of years of evolution has done to humanity and at the same time sings the praises of Old Testament myths like Adam and Eve and Noah’s flood. That’s bold and worrisome. In the name of metaphor, he can turn almost anything into truth. Like Richard Dawkins said, Peterson is drunk on metaphor.

      Peterson is angry at Elliot Page, for example, because he has a huge influence over the public and is swaying young girls into confusion/dysphoria (link below for example). I think he also causes confusion/dysphoria with his constant support of false biblical myths and religious metaphor. That doesn’t mean everything he says is unhelpful.

    2. I understand very clearly what Jordan Peterson was saying when he recently smeared and vilified the entire environmental movement for its “alarmism”. Despite his insistence on being a skeptic, he relies on unqualified biased and incredible people like Bjorn Lomborg for his quite uninformed views on energy issues. His adoption of opinions from unqualified nonscientists are devoid of the skepticism he preaches. Nor has he deigned to do any independent research himself on energy and environment. Early on I regarded him as a hero in the free speech movement. But his refusal to educate himself and his attacks on others (like a vicious one in public in which he responded to a student in a most patronizing and disrespectful way) means he has nothing of real value to say, on the most important issue facing humanity: the fate of the earth. I no longer care to hear his uninformed diatribes.

  8. Nice to see your Stanford pix, Jerry. You’ll no doubt provide further notes after you get home. I hope you got into MemChu (as it was known in catalogese). I once had an office under the Sociology building in the Quad, next to the Law School library (before Law moved to its “new” home around 1975). Used to have my lunch in Memorial Church listening to organ practice and contemplating the religious words of wisdom from Jane Stanford around the building…. Well, enough from me.

  9. I’ve only seen Amy Wax on Glenn Loury’s show and don’t find her particularly interesting. She said something like, “Median Black IQ’s are lower than median White IQs.” This is a widely accepted fact. Is there something wrong with saying it out loud?

    Perhaps she has a truly odious side I haven’t seen, but objections to the paraphrase above seem pretty woke to me.

      1. I saw that before and just watched again. The full clip gives context about what she is saying. I agree with Glenn that she overgeneralizes. I think she is likely mistaken. I don’t find her statements there odious, and doubt Glenn would either. She has a concern that immigrant cultures could swamp our fundamental values as expressed in the Declaration and Bill of Rights. (“Does the spirit of liberty beat in their breasts?”) I certainly wouldn’t want hordes of newcomers believing gay people, apostates, atheists, and blasphemers should be punished, perhaps killed. Chinese and South Asians don’t seem that threatening to me. Concerns about how immigration might disturb the existing culture are ideas worthy of discussion.

        Ken, perhaps I’ve twice missed the odious part, can you give me a time marker within the clip?

        1. She makes multiple sweeping negative generalisations, all of which are false, about Asian people.

          Perhaps if she made those generalisations about your race it would be clearer for you to see how odious it is.

        2. She makes the same types of arguments that were leveled against Irish immigration by the Know-Nothing Party in the mid-19th century, against Chinese immigration leading up to the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, and against immigration by southern and central Europeans and Jews leading up to passage of the Immigration Act of 1924. (As to the last, perhaps the best treatment of its pernicious effect was set out in the first episode Ken Burn’s recent PBS documentary The US and the Holocaust. Have you seen it?)

          The argument that the old immigrants were good, but the new immigrants will overwhelm the nation and undermine its fundamental values is as old as this Republic itself. And it has always been proved false. (The Trumpist “America First” ideology is the latest recrudescence of this ugly, age-old nativist malady.)

          Wax’s essentialist arguments regarding various races and ethnicities are merely the obverse of the woke’s (although I of course think her statements are absolutely protected against any type of sanction by the free-speech principles of the First Amendment).

          1. Ken, this is all unhelpful obfuscation. I am very pro-immigration, and not just for demonstrably high achievers. The 1924 act contributed to the deaths of relatives. The Know Nothing party was aptly named.

            I don’t see where Wax makes an essentialist argument in the clip we are discussing. She makes a cultural argument. I agree with her desire for immigrants possessed of a strong spirit of liberty – to me that is by far the most important quality, trumping all other criteria. I think she is terribly wrong divining that spirit from ethnicity, but as Leslie wrote, that doesn’t make her hateful.

            I think she is on the right track wanting to exclude people espousing toxic ideologies. All this posturing by you and others strikes me as quite woke – focusing on her personally and not on her idea that there are immigrant mindsets we should rightly not welcome.

            1. I think she is terribly wrong divining that spirit from ethnicity …

              That strikes me as an essentialist argument on her behalf, Carl. Her questioning whether south Asians have “the strong spirit of liberty beat[ing] in their breast” recalls the slimy calumny lodged by nativists against Jewish immigrants in the first half of the 20th century that they are inherently incapable of loyalty to their host nation, only to each other.

              One hears echoes of that dual-loyalty calumny today in Donald Trump’s repeatedly expressed assumption that Jewish-Americans should vote for president based solely on US policy toward Israel.

              But all that seems A-OK with Prof. Wax because (as she explained during a question to another presenter at the Academic Freedom conference) some of what she described as Trump’s “adorable deplorables” invited her for a visit to a dude ranch.

              Wax is nothing if not hyper-partisan, claiming at the conference that Democrats are beyond reach on the issue of academic freedom.

      2. She asks, “Does the spirit of Liberty beat in their breast?” ar 5:50.

        I didn’t think that was odious when I saw the full-length video earlier this year and I don’t think it’s odious now. I could debate her, as Loury did, but only in the context of my experience. If she’s right, it is a danger to America. But there is nothing hateful about being wrong.

        1. I’m reminded of hearing some Amuricun, in the context of Covid lock-downs in China, referring to the Chinese populace as being “compliant.” (From what I’ve heard of Wax on Loury’s podcast, I reasonably gather that Wax would agree with that sentiment.) I rather think of them as “cooperative,” not generally the strongest character trait (as compared to “competitive”) of increasingly narcissistic Amuricuns, at least as manifested in the first fifth of the 21st century, and as compared to the last half (or less) of the 20th century.

      1. Excellent article, which gets things right without using the word “odious” or other ad hominem insults. Instead the author takes Wax’s arguments seriously and makes sound rebuttals spelling out what he thinks she has wrong. This is the non-woke way to do it.

        1. Very good, next time I hear anti-white racism I’ll avoid calling it odious (something I wouldn’t have done in the past).

          1. I call anti-white racism odious only when someone with a political agenda tries to tell my five-year-old grand-daughter in a tax-funded school that she is unredeemably racist just because she’s white. That’s odious. You can call me anything you like. I won’t call you hateful but I’ll still try with every lawful means including ridicule to prevent your views from gaining ascendancy.

            1. Those aren’t my views, I do find anti-white racism odious like the kind you describe. I think someone who holds those views is hateful and racist.

              My point is that when someone spouts off on anti-brown racism then you’re not an sjw for calling it odious, the same goes for any racism. In my opinion it makes you a decent person but seemingly that’s controversial here.

            2. I should be clear. I have never heard a spokesman for Canada’s South Asian community express these sentiments, which is why Prof. Wax’s views about South Asian immigration to America don’t ring true for me. The woke anti-racism we are being tortured with in Canada comes from black activists, whose ancestors were all voluntary immigrants to Canada and its predecessor colonies*, and Indigenous activists pushing the decolonization agenda. Brown people (which are what South Asian people here call themselves) are largely staying out of this controversy, although they should be aware that the epithet “settler” has replaced “whitey” to describe the colonial oppressors, simply because it has dawned on the activists that Canada and its power structure are no longer straightforwardly white.
              * Nearly all. Even though slavery was legal in proto-Canada and everywhere else in the Empire until 1833, the climate was nowhere suitable for a plantation slave economy. Before then, American slaves reaching British territory were sometimes freed in reward for their loyalty to the Crown, other times not, depending on the King’s mood.

              Edit: the other rule I have for my own speech is not to describe other speech as “spouting off.” It raises the temperature, drops the gloves as we say in ice hockey. I don’t even like to call anyone a racist, partly because there are hate speech laws in Canada and even if that isn’t accusing her of a criminal offence, it is still an unanswerable charge, the kind of thing that if you deny it, the denial proves your guilt. So the “racist” epithet is unfair. Only the other side fights that way.

              1. Well fair enough but it seems we have a different perspective on some of this.

                For example I would consider making multiple sweeping negative generalisations, all of which are false, about ethnic groups to be what’s “raising the temperature”, not the reaction to it.

                I also think being charged as a racist is a falsifiable claim. If you’ve been labelled a racist despite not having done or said anything racist then the charge is false. The sjws may still claim racism but they’d be wrong.

                If on the other hand you’ve been charged as a racist after having done or said racist things then the charge is true.

              2. @D. Singh

                I also think being charged as a racist is a falsifiable claim. If you’ve been labelled a racist despite not having done or said anything racist then the charge is false. The sjws may still claim racism but they’d be wrong.

                This reads like satire. Thousands of people have lost jobs or had their lives seriously damaged based on mere accusations from the woke. Of course, “The sjws may still claim racism but they’d be wrong.”, but that’s little consolation to someone whose life is in ruins.

                Whites often has false aspersions and gross generalizations claimed against them. For example, parts of the 1619 Project do this. It’s not necessarily racist, and correcting the falsehoods is more important than morally condemning the authors.

        2. … without using the word “odious” or other ad hominem insults.

          My comment above referred to Wax’s arguments as odious; it did NOT attack her character or otherwise assert that Wax’s arguments should be rejected because she herself is personally odious.

          Accordingly, agree with my assertion or not, that assertion was NOT an instantiation of argumentum ad hominem.

          1. I grant you that. It’s not relevant to what you quote me writing, which was praise for the article taking apart her position in non-woke fashion. What I actually wrote in reply to you was, “I think she is likely mistaken. I don’t find her statements there odious, and doubt Glenn would either.”

            Further, calling a statement odious without quoting and rebutting it differs little from calling its author odious.

    1. Some context.

      But there is a more sinister long-term answer for the Democrats’ whole-hearted embrace of illegal immigration. A 2018 Center for American Progress (CAP) Action Fund memo sheds light on this. The memo, co-authored by former Hillary Clinton communications director, Jennifer Palmieri, argues that the Democratic Party needs to protect illegal immigrants brought here at a young age as a result of President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program because they are “a critical component of the Democratic Party’s future electoral success.”

  10. I used to like Jordan Peterson. I read excerpts from his book on 12 rules for life, and while I disagreed with a lot (too conservative/religion-osculating), I thought he made a lot of great points. Who can argue with “take responsibility, clean your room, try to be the best person you can be”?

    And then he had to go ahead and turn into an apologist for the evil dictator Putin, spewing nonsense about how Putin was justified in bombing Ukrainian schools and maternity wards because Ukraine had allied itself with the decadent, immoral West, with its Critical Race Theory and trans activists and Drag Queen Story Hour. Putin is a valiant defender of the virtuous, white, Christian West, you see!

    /gagging noises

    It really is extremely disappointing. It’s a good thing I’m not at the conference, because if I were, I couldn’t resist the impulse to walk up to Peterson and tell him to [redacted because of The Roolz].

  11. I loved the conference and listened/watched all of it. Even that Dr. Atlas (whom I didn’t like). Jordan Peterson indeed is eloquent, his intelligence has never been in doubt. And he’s a good academic (and I think clinical) psychologist. His philosophy / religion irks me big time but given the help he gives lost young men I think on balance the world is a better place with him in it.
    Ms. Wax wasn’t as crazy as I’d expected.
    Pinker was cool as always.
    The host, of course, was excellent and handled questions like an Argentinian soccer goalie god!
    Peter Theil was … Theil and less monstrous than his political positions actually are.

    I’m very happy and appreciative of the times we live in whereby anybody can attend such a gathering. And just click to see almost the complete works of each speaker.
    And for FREE! In my loungeroom in pj’s, with my dog (in his!)!
    In my/our youth it’d have been impossible.


    1. What did Scott Atlas say that you did not like? He pushed for a Sweden-style approach to COVID, right? In hindsight, was he wrong?

      1. Oh he was right on that, in retrospect. A Swedish system is cool in the rear view mirror. As are a lot of covid critiques. Let’s not forget it took a LONG time to be sure about the effectiveness of various policies.

      2. He said the Europeans countries who did better did not close schools/switch to online schooling. That was nonsense, even Sweden switched to online secondary/tertiary education for a while and avoided large gatherings and did social distancing. Sweden treated its institutionalized elderly atrociously (weren’t allowed any visitors for close to 6 months, I believe not even when the were dying), it is a sparsely populated country with lots of single households, a disciplined legacy population not prone to socializing, and the neighboring countries were strict with very low incidences. One of the US problems was that measures were late, very local and completely uncoordinated. As long as you have free movement to areas with high incidences, one might just as well do nothing and leave it all up to the individuals.

    1. I’ve said this before here, but I first heard of Peterson in the late 1990s and early 2000s when he was the stock cranky contrarian they would drag out on TVOntario’s The Agenda. He struck me then as an incredibly shallow thinker and nothing I’ve seen since then has convinced me otherwise. I’m amazed his 15 minutes of fame has stretched on as long as it has.

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