Zizek to talk with Peterson, billed as "debate"

It comes to sight, through a belt of shadowy light, a trashy and fraudulent (politically motivated) newspaper headline:

Found on the internet:

I recast this, the correction being made: Zizek is a flashy intellectual. Peterson may be a philosopher. Marx was the first grand ideologist.

Why? Because in antiquity all philosophy (however: this means, sophistry, megerintism, and other things, as well as the winning, relativising (through the uttermost dominating of the human depths, by manfully setting the rudder and “rutter”) Plato and Aristotle essentially concerned live public concerns lived in public. Catholicism and, a fortiori, European science, was not there to offer a ready-made metaphysics, so even the most abstruse searchings after hidden things, appealing to the human essence, and as such demanded by man as man (that is to say, in the interpretation: the human being). Human beings must, through their nature, if I may, have some answers to the question of what the whole or all things is. Today, in greatly transformed cosmopolitan circumstances, all discussion is rapid, formed by large city short-talk, by the need for sudden speech. Peterson is the first to enter this utterly strange world space with sudden force. Ergo, the preservation of the traditional core of the philosopher, in the contemporary, is not impossible.

Peterson moves in the living discussion, and superlatively owns his own positions. His formula is equal to the ad hominem in the Socratic sense: “don’t say things that make you weak”. Ergo, say things that are in the core of your being, rather than putting, merely on the lips, “arguments”. Strength of mind not yet clarified, perhaps a mediocrity, but, maybe not. One who has done some thinking, and may have the ability to think. Basically unpolitical, though buttered at every point by the press as a right-wing hack piece of steaming toast as though he were a “party man”.

Zizek: A scholar and brilliant intellectual tactician who reads German philosophers of the short period of the German spring into the strange light of time, and writes innumerable entertaining books and articles. A professor of philosophy, ergo, one who does not deserve, and lacks the philosophic sense, to be a philosopher. Largely the product of the Soviet machine, essentially weak minded; comedianism appealing to the ravenous maw of the multitude of hungry academic superficiality and politics. At least as anti-philosophic as the clan of sophists and the megarantists.

You have to define ‘what is philosophy’ first.

I think there are many perspective to what is philosophy, i.e.

  1. philosophy-proper [universal incl Western, Eastern, everywhere]
  2. Western philosophy
  3. Academic philosophy
  4. Armchair philosophy

According to wiki, Peterson is definitely not an academic philosopher.
I believe Peterson do get engage in philosophy in general but of what genre, we will need a definition to such type of philosophy.

Zizek is obviously an academic philosopher.

I believe we need to establish a universal definition for ‘what is philosophy’ that is acceptable to all.

Peterson is actually a good philosopher, he just hasn’t let go of god and objectivism yet, but he’s performed brilliantly at finding novel ways to substantiate the absurd.

I like Peterson’s attitude to discussions. He wants to take risks and not just make points. And you can see sometimes, he’s raw. He is not finding life a picnic and telling us how to make it one. There are few men who can manage to do that without playing victim. I find it hard to believe they will actually debate. I assume they will sit down and blab. IPeterson doesn’t strike me as a philospher - not because he’s not an academic one, which I don’t care about, but because he’s a psychologist. One could be both, but he seems much more the latter. I really liked In Defense of Lost Causes, by Zizek. I am not remotely Marxist or Communist, but I liked the process of seeing what can be valued in actions/processes/groups/leaders that are (seemingly) simply evil. I think it is a useful process,though it didn’t lead me to the political opinions he is heading for, I found it useful internally. I don’t see Zizek as a clown. I am not sure he actually produces things that work in the way he wants, but I think the processes in them are potentially useful, despite coming from Marx and Lacan.

They’re both psychologists, clinical and academic respectively, and their subjects of interest spill over to philosophy - perhaps you could say pragmatically and theoretically respectively.

I was thinking the other day how they do have common ground on the subject of, what Zizek would call ideology, and Peterson would call stories - and this is an important subject, because it is at the core of all the political tension we’re seeing today.

I also casually entertained a kind of ranking of contemporary thinkers/youtube personalities - I’m sure there will be disagreement but I’m happy with it:
At the bottom you have ideologues like Stephan Molyneux, obvious trash.
Up from there you have competent thinkers, I thought of the not so famous guy from his channel Rationality Rules, I think his name is Simon Woodford. He’s got a solid grasp, still learning, not yet original but we’ll see - there’s probably other examples you could fit into this category.
Then you have the advanced thinkers, which I think Jordan Peterson classifies as. He’s thinking outside the box, has some original insights and is worth listening to when speaking about a number of subjects, but obviously not all.
I find Sam Harris classes as a master thinker - he appears to have considered pretty much everything that you find him talking about, and argues for his case pretty much flawlessly. He’s even pushing contemporary thought into the future.
Zizek, I’m sure plenty will disagree, I class as a genius thinker. He consistently delivers material that turns on its head even advanced thinking. He’s one of the extremely small number of people who brings up perspectives and arguments that I hadn’t even thought of.

Whilst Sam demolished Peterson in debate, I think Zizek will just exchange extended monologues with him.

Also, thank you Guide for delivering a cogently written post - if you have before I’ve missed it, but I appreciate your dispensing of the flowery nonsense on this occasion, I hope you keep it up.

Who isn’t a psychologist? lol

Peterson is the punchingbag touring youtube apparently for the purpose of losing debate after debate, but what’s remarkable is his ability to keep finding new ways to defend what he should otherwise know by now is wrong. As soon as you think you have him down, he finds another angle. I applaud the creativity and ingenuity.

An amateur psychologist? Sure - pretty much everyone. I mean in their professional capacities and in their primary areas of interest and proven expertise.

I’m not so sure he’s finding another angle, he’s just changing the subject. He’s a big fan of analogy “it’s like…”, and whenever you try and pin him down he’ll go off on a tangent to his initial analogy because he feels like what he’s trying to explain “it’s complicated, man, it’s really complicated”. All he’s really doing is exposing his lack of ability to condense his understanding, often an indication that it isn’t a sufficient understanding - which is good in a way. He openly acknowledges that he’s debating at the edge of his understanding, and has no fear in presenting it. More people should do this when they are at the edge of their understanding, rather than insisting that they aren’t and trying to hide it to save face. The problem is that it’s not the edge of understanding for someone like Sam Harris, or even that Dillahunty guy, for whom I previously lacked respect due to the capacity in which I was made aware of him (his debate performance was clearer in orders of magnitude than the mess of his show where he’s dealing with obvious morons). He actually might throw my ranking into question, because I would class him as another competent and not advanced, yet he was still able to crush Peterson’s “advanced” thinking. I guess my categories aren’t mutually exclusive and overlap somewhat.

Zizek will also turn to analogy, particularly in the form of his jokes, which I love, but they are all convergent, not divergent. I’ve racked up literally hundreds of hours listening to each of them… how sad haha.

Peterson changed when I showed him VO.
He got a lot angrier, I must say.

Oh man, Dillahunty is definitely genius-level.

FWD to 36:00 (or backup a couple minutes for context)


“And as to whether or not we can know anything, the only demonstration that I can give is that I wrote this rebuttal ahead of time.” [Audience laughs] A mic-drop moment.

You’re right about Peterson: he’s lack-luster, and if I never hear him again, that’s perfectly fine.

I’m not aware of that Zizek fella. Perhaps I should be?


That IS a good one… :astonished:

I wouldn’t say lack-luster as straight-up as you have - I think he has value, but I too will be perfectly fine if I never hear from him again.

I’m half surprised, yet half not. He’s a prominent leftist, but hails from the EU and probably falls short of the American standards for superficial aesthetics (and media bias).

By that, I mean if you can get past what I might naively suggest is a speech impediment, it might just be his Slovene accent, his ticks, sweatiness - his ideosyncracies in general - the guy is more than worth your time if you can keep up with the erratic (but as I said, convergent) structure of his points. There’s plenty of material out there - mostly commentary on contemporary issues drawing primarily from Lacan, Hegel and Marx.

I still can’t believe Chomsky flew under my radar for so long. I checked out Zizek briefly and I can get past his idiosyncrasies just fine. Thanks for the tip. If there is anyone else or anything else you’d suspect my being interested in, feel free to pass it along. :slight_smile:

you’ve only just now discovered zizek, serendipper? he’s like a rock star, comedian, narcissist (“i am a monster, i claim”), philosophical virtuoso and master psychoanalyst of capitalist/consumerist culture rolled into one, dude… how could you have missed him? watch this one (the whole series if you can).


Missing the obvious is what I’m best at :smiley:

Rattle snakes, bishops hiding in corners… I don’t know I’m still alive :stuck_out_tongue:

I’m on it.


More of Zizek’s hideous, though charismatic, clowneries, in the most substantive and repulsive form, discrediting him and showing him to be a weak mind, shows in his recent talk of “pseudo science”. The man has no judgment concerning European science, is a basket case, living in a hamper, a kind of rat biting a hole in the wicker of a Soviet materialist Marxist ideological black out, peeking an ugly lascivious snout out for a sniff of sham fresh air (while continuing to bandy about Soviet bosh which he never got loose of due to having a weak mind). And what he refers to as “pseudo-science”, whatever that may mean, is a comparison concerning the way hormones function in different strata of animal life. A perfectly sensible subject matter. Zizek, a clever mind who appeals to those without the ability to think: infinite bluff of an academic theorist.


Sam Harris, a bore shock jock who appeals to illiterate persons of no culture, but who has the equipage of the strong self-reserved confidence of a magician. Wholly ignorant of Western thought and its history in any serious sense. Absurdly whimpered that he knew Richard Rorty as though that excused his lack of a serious knowledge of Pragmatism (and, as though Rorty, one among the many, were the very epitomized core of this American thinking). Idiotic American bloc demagogic appeal to the state educated multitude in its most elementary nakedness. Not so fraudulent, nor as wholly unable to think, as booboise beloved scientism posterboy Dawkins.

I eagerly await the beginnings of an argument.

Oh, I agree that Dawkins indulges in Scientism: the tertiary horseman, below Hitchens and above Dennett.

You have learned the simpleton patois of scientism, the wretched vox populi. Now, you must learn one day, that this kind of childishness is only good for mechanical dealings. For humans can’t be treated as cannon balls. It harms reasoning to forbid its power scope. Then, the result is, that one becomes dependent on rules, fallacies and various prosthetic means of “thinking” and “judging”, which more order one than serve the mind. However, beside from the current age, and its problems, due to the race of lethal missiles ahead of the power to think, which you must study decades to grasp, what I would recommend is that you read a decent piece of literature. Plato, a magnificent stylist, will help whet your apatite for the joy derived from the wink of language. Poor denizen of Galilean decay!

Your fraudulent obnoxiousness has lied, since I gave a reason. Though, not Zizek, who merely says “pseudos”!


The judgment stands, despite inarticulate popular outcry. Very few people have strong minds, Zizek is surely not one of them.

What do you think logic is for?
Do you really think that certain people can only think from one logical proposition to the next? In reality pretty much everyone thinks without restraint, myself included, only if they wish to communicate their thoughts meaningfully they can either systematise what they’ve thought, after they’ve thought it, into a form that others can make sense of, or they can just throw out raw thoughts through whatever means. The latter can be artistic expression, it can rely on the interpretation of others, it can be nonsense. By all means indulge in the latter, but if you go by the former you can construct ideas that actually make reliable sense of our senses - even formulate cogent argument and predict things with more than random success. The Apollonian versus the Dionysian, if you like. Perhaps you are a die-hard devotee of the latter - there is nothing inherently wrong with embracing nonsense and irrationality. Art has value, no question, but it does not have the same value as rational analysis and accurate, reliable communication.

This is what logic is for, and if you wish to explore the details on a precise, communicable level to build something that lasts independently of the expression of the day and contemporary tastes, perhaps some Galilean decay would do you good! The reality is that you rely on whatever you might call the sensible, rational, logical form of thinking in your everyday social life - assuming you have one and aren’t completely dependent on others to interact for you. Maybe you’re still a child? Which everyone was once. In as far as anyone is embedded in the real world, and with the capacity to create beyond the transitory, they will learn to formulate their thought, however previously unshackled it was, into something that is not fallacious.

As such, on a forum of communication that values the wisdom not only in the arts but also the sciences, your excuse from logical consistency is denied.