To absolutely no one’s surprise, the conclusion is that the new Diversity & Comics graphic novel sucks. When a guy who can’t write hires a guy who can’t draw and doesn’t even bother to hire anyone to color it, you’re probably not going to get a very good result. Richard Meyer probably would have done well to have left off the lettering as well while he was at it. A review of Iron Sights posted in the Arkhaven Forums.

Okay, Comicsgate finally has real, tangible product to critique. I received Richard Meyer’s (Diversity & Comics) second IndieGoGo project and Splatto Comics first release Iron Sights today, and … well, it’s a disappointment, I’ve got to say.

Meyer received these from the printer months ago, but because he was packaging and mailing them all himself, it took all this time to get them out to the backers. I must’ve been right at the tail end of the list. Glad he finished the job, but there are surely better ways to print, pack and ship comics. I can think of one (**DARK LEGION**), but it’s entirely possible Meyer’s book wouldn’t even have qualified for the DL label. All its product to date has been far, FAR superior to this.

So what did I get for US$32? Well, the book is B&W with tones, roughly 120 pages (not numbered). The art is amateurish. If he’s relatively new to the form, maybe there’s long-term hope for Ibai Canales, as sometimes new comics artists progress by leaps and bounds. Alternatively, if he’s already taken a few years to get to this point … well, sorry, it’s just not good enough. Every Arkhaven book in print currently is leaps and bounds ahead of Iron Sights both artistically and in terms of presentation and professionalism. Backgrounds are minimal, characters are off-model frequently enough that you often can’t tell who’s who, and Canales shows no real grasp of storytelling or sequential art. There were pages when I simply couldn’t figure out what was happening.

Part of the problem may be Meyer’s script, which in places cuts back and forth between scenes to the point that you don’t even know where you are anymore. The other problem is the lack of color, which makes it next to impossible to distinguish similar-looking characters from one another. And there are plenty of those. (Clarity in B&W comics IS possible. Charlie Adlard on Walking Dead has no problem making it work, but his art is tight and his characters distinctively modeled, whereas Canales’ is loose and scratchy enough that there are times I couldn’t tell a rifle sight from a drainpipe, and all his blond men looked like the same old guy.)

Back when I ordered IS, I had watched more than a few D&C reviews of Marvel comics. Meyer’s stern critiques of sloppy SJW pap fooled me into thinking he might have the chops to produce something superior. He certainly seemed to know bad when he sees it. That said, whatever made him think this book was him putting his best foot forward is a bit beyond me. He’s obviously been reading those blood-soaked, profanity-filled early Jason Aaron Vertigo comics (I can’t remember the series now — some Indian reservation thing), because the random, pointless foul-mouthedness taints every second panel. Considering that Meyer keeps his language fairly clean in his YouTube videos, that was a surprise.

All in all, I’m glad I didn’t throw major money at the project. D&C’s sniping at Arkhaven has not been on the 2VS level, but it’s certainly been regular enough that I would have expected him to produce more professional work than this. How is this in any way an improvement over whatever it is Meyer doesn’t like about Arkhaven books? I don’t get it.

If Iron Sights is at all representative of what Comicsgate writers and artists can be expected to produce, Vox and Arkhaven absolutely did the right thing by putting major distance between the brands.

Now, I will commend Meyer for doing what few critics dare to do and attempting to do something better himself. That is a courageous act for a critic. However, I will also observe that most critics have no idea how hard it is to actually avoid making the mistakes they critique so gleefully, nor are they often able to do any better themselves. It’s not a surprise Richard Meyer, even in his second attempt, couldn’t manage to create anything anywhere nearly as good as any of the 25+ comics Arkhaven and Dark Legion have published this year, and the contrast between Iron Sights and the beautiful, full-color, 152-page Right Ho, Jeeves omnibus when it appears next week will serve as an effective measure of the yawning gap between an amateur operation like Splatto and a professional one such as Arkhaven.

The fact that Meyer has been sneering non-stop at Arkhaven since our very first release only makes his subsequent pratfall in print all the more amusing. Compare the artwork; even when taking color out of the equation, there really is no comparison. Can you guess which image is Splatto and which is Arkhaven?

That’s just the art. With regards to the writing, there is Richard Meyer on the one side, and The Legend Chuck Dixon adapting The Grandmaster John C. Wright on the other. I don’t know about you, but I like our odds. And yup, yup, that is indeed Ruff.

There was a happy barking, and a dog that was half Border Collie and half who-knew-what came bounding up the stairs. He had a white muzzle and chest, black ears, black flanks, white stockings, and bright eyes with a black mask around them. However, he lacked any collar, dog tags, or fixed place of residence. He was Gil’s dog in every way but legally. Gil did not know where he went during the day or where he slept, and he thought it too nosy to ask.

Confessions of a former fan

I really appreciate the seriousness with which even the most dubious skeptics are approaching Jordanetics, and the way in which they are honestly reassessing their previous assumptions and beliefs in light of the information it contains. This detailed review of the book explains the process of what goes through the mind of a Peterson fan when he first interprets what he hears Peterson saying versus when he subsequently encounters the verifiable reality of Peterson’s teachings much better than I ever could.
– Vox

Confessions of a former, Jordan Peterson fan…
December 4, 2018

I’ve been a fan of Jordan Peterson (JP) for a couple years. I’ve watched many hours of JP video, including: classroom lectures, blog posts, event speeches, interviews, Bible story analysis, etc. I loved JP for denouncing Marxism, Leftism, SJW’s and speech control as he adroitly argued against many of the standard leftist positions.

On our family road trips, I would force the family to listen to JP lectures or speeches, then proceed to tell them what JP was saying.

As a Christian and Bible student, I understood that JP’s position on the Bible was flawed and that he was not a Christian himself, however, he was speaking against so many of the positions I was against that he inspired me to hope that he could stem the tide of those beliefs. I put some of my “faith” in JP…that was a mistake.

It is a strange experience to look back in time and see something I thought was so good, profound and impactful, that it moved me to tears, but now, realize JP did not really say anything I thought he said. I listened to the words he said, but I am the one that filled in the meaning…JP did not mean what I thought he meant.

As I was telling my family what he “meant”, I was really telling them what I wanted him to mean. JP was my “reason”, or excuse, for pontificating on various subjects and JP became a source of validation for my positions. I could state with confidence that my position was “right” and then point to JP and say, “See, he’s saying the same thing…”, thus making me feel good about this professor because he “backed me up”.

Later, as I noticed inconsistencies, or position changes, with JP, I wrote them off as mistakes, or taken out of context, or simply ignored them. I was not willing to accept that I put my faith in someone who would actually be antithetical to my beliefs; that was something I was unwilling to consider.

About this time I learned about some of Vox Day’s posts regarding JP’s positions. Some of Vox’s statements about JP were quite harsh. I thought, “Vox is not being fair to JP. JP is on “our side”, so cut the guy some slack.” However, one thing Vox said was the “key” that allowed me to reexamine my faith in JP. Vox said something like, “JP is repackaging Gnosticism and is not really saying what people think he’s saying. JP is literally evil.”

As a Christian, familiar with the problems of Gnosticism, I had to acknowledge that if Vox’s point was true, it would be detectable if I reexamined JP’s positions. My problem at that point was a pride, or ego issue. I did not want to admit that I could have been mislead, or duped, into following someone who was teaching something I knew to be evil. How could I possibly be fooled? I’m too smart to fall for that sort of thing, right? Not me.

So, I accepted some of Vox’s challenges. One was to simply “read” what JP was saying, instead of “listening” to it. Wow, what a difference! Reading JP’s words, I found they were devoid of the meanings I had been assigning to them. What he meant by good, evil, God, truth, etc. was not what I knew these words to mean.

When JP said to always tell the truth, I plugged my definition of truth into his statement. When JP said this or that position was “evil”, I plugged my definition of evil into his statement. When JP talked about “consciousness” I “heard” my definition of consciousness, or “being” or whatever.

But after taking some time to go find how JP defined these words or ideas, and ignoring what I hoped he meant, I was shocked, to say the least.

One of my life axioms is, “Only the truth can withstand scrutiny.” Therefore, never be afraid to scrutinize something; if it is true, then it will survive the scrutiny. It was time to scrutinize JP more fully.

After my own findings were eroding my faith in JP, I took the plunge and purchased “Jordanetics”.

The first couple chapters did little to shed more light on JP, but did add more reasons to doubt my faith in him. However, once I reached chapter 3 and beyond, Vox’s dissection of JP’s positions began in earnest. Vox’s approach is quite simple.

  1. Here is JP’s Rule for Life #X
  2. Here is what JP says, which does not address said rule at all.
  3. What JP is saying means this, using JP’s own words.
  4. Now that we are clear on what JP is saying, you have to decide what to do.

I decided. Instead of a thinking JP is a man that supports what I support, I’ve come to the sad realization that he is antithetical to most of my values and beliefs. Wow! That hurt my pride and ego, but truth doesn’t care about those.

I’ll summarize: If you believe any of the following, then JP is your man:

  • There is no such thing as Objective Truth.
  • Truth is whatever helps you survive.
  • Being or State of Being is contingent on your acceptance of truth (little “t”) and rejection of “evil” (little ‘e’).
  • Evil is that which hinders you.
  • Jesus represents a state of being, but not a person, and definitely NOT the Son of God (God being the Creator).
  • Satan represents a state of being, but is not an actual fallen angel.
  • Social hierarchies exist, however, if you are too low or high, that’s evil. The goal is the middle, that’s where “good” is.
  • All ideas of God / gods are simply mankind’s attempts to explain states of being.
  • Belonging to a “group” will negatively affect your being.
  • All concepts of “good”, “evil”, God, Being, heaven / hell can be unified and coalesced into one concept…the one JP supports.

I could keep going. However, if you find these concepts appealing, then JP is your man. If, like me, you find these ideas to be irrational, nonsensical, demonstrably wrong, the opposite of your beliefs, etc., and you’ve been influenced by JP, then read “Jordanetics” and see for yourself…

To those who wrote negative reviews; I read them. I was where you are…putting my meanings into what JP says. I feel pity for those who continue to base their support for JP because of “what they think he means”, when what he actually means is there for everyone to find. However, like me, getting passed your ego and pride might be the toughest step for you to take. But take the challenge at take it…

In other words – Only the truth can withstand scrutiny.

The Cult of the Secret King

Now there’s a turn of phrase I wish I had thought of myself. But full credit to Adam Piggott, Gentleman Adventurer, who coined it while writing his review of Jordanetics:

Vox Day quotes Peterson regularly throughout the book, and nothing damns a charlatan so much as the act of exposing his lies to the direct sunlight of truth. What struck me every time I read a passage attributed to Peterson was the complete absence of clarity in his written word. In contrast to the plain language that Day uses, Peterson’s sentences are convoluted labyrinths of madness. But his skill lies in spreading just enough recognizable symbolism throughout his screed that an intelligent reader will both identify with the text while simultaneously refusing to admit that he has not actually understood it.

In other words, Peterson preys on people’s inherent narcissism and their tendency to project…. Peterson’s entire goal is to subvert those men who are on the cusp of acting on their questioning of the prevailing prog orthodoxy by rejecting globalism for nationalism. He does this by sucking them in with seemingly helpful platitudes to clean their room and take their pills but which themselves actually mask his true intentions. He desires a world-wide collective of mediocre automatons who will keep their mouths closed and will not act. In other words, they won’t get in the way. Far from building better men, his aim is to keep men in the nightmare of the gamma by ostensibly shielding them from the hell of the physical world with rules that perversely condemn them to circle a drain while under the delusion that they’re moving forward.

Peterson is a coward and like all cowards he can only better himself by attempting to bring everyone else down to his own level. He inhabits a world of lies and exploitation and he encourages his followers to get into a metaphorical bed with him while promising to reveal to them his secrets of power and success. Peterson is the self anointed special one and he makes the following demands of his acolytes: are you worthy enough to walk in my footsteps, and how high can you climb on my imaginary dominance hierarchy?

It was beyond my powers to penetrate the layers of concealment that Peterson employs to mask his true nature, but Vox Day is the man for the task. His book brilliantly exposes the evil intentions of this false prophet and while doing so reveals the utter worthlessness of the subject himself. How anyone could possibly take Peterson seriously after reading this book let alone follow him is beyond me.

Help the low-status lobsters in your life escape the cowardly Cult of the Secret King by giving them a copy of Jordanetics, still the #1 bestseller in Political Philosophy. Amazon isn’t shipping the paperback yet, but Castalia Direct has it in stock.

This review is particularly interesting because Peterson has previously whined on Twitter about being criticized by Adam Piggott. It should be amusing to see how much longer he will persist in trying to respond indirectly to Jordanetics without actually mentioning it by name or addressing any of its highly specific contentions. Perhaps he should try a leaf out of Janet Reno’s playbook. Dance party makes the bad book go away!

As Gandalf to Saruman

I had always tended to think of Jordan Peterson as more of a Grima Wormtongue than anything, but this chilling quote from the Lord of the Rings cited by an English reviewer of Jordanetics named Janet is weirdly prophetic concerning the way most of Peterson’s followers can’t even tell you what his teachings actually are, and how many of them react so furiously to even the most soundly-sourced criticism of their spiritual guru:

I read voraciously but don’t normally leave reviews, mostly because I never know what to write. However, this book is too important to be neglected, it needs to be spread and read as widely as possible, so I wanted to leave a 5 star rating. I freely admit that I was fooled by Jordan Peterson to begin with. But after a while of following his videos, I began to feel firstly confused, then uneasy, then I was reminded of Tolkien’s description of Saruman:

“Suddenly another voice spoke, low and melodious, its very sound an enchantment. Those who listened unwarily to that voice could seldom report the words that they heard; and if they did, they wondered, for little power remained in them. Mostly they remembered only that it was a delight to hear the voice speaking, all that it said seemed wise and reasonable, and desire awoke in them by swift agreement to seem wise themselves. When others spoke they seemed harsh and uncouth by contrast, and if they gainsaid the voice, anger was kindled in the hearts of those under the spell. For some the spell lasted only while the voice spoke to them, and when it spoke to another they smiled, as men do who see through a juggler’s trick while others gape at it. For many the sound of the voice alone was enough to hold them enthralled; but for those whom it conquered the spell endured when they were far away, and ever they heard that soft voice whispering and urging them. But none were unmoved; none rejected its pleas and its commands without an effort of mind and will, so long as its master had control of it.”
(The Two Towers, Ch. 10)

If I tried to grasp what Peterson said and make proper sense of it, it was impossible. He uses words like Humpty Dumpty in Alice Through the Looking Glass; every meaning is fluid and a word can mean something different every day. And yet pointing out any contradiction or inconsistency, or even mild questioning, stirs up a frothing rage in his followers.

Vox Day is the Gandalf to Peterson’s Saruman, destroying the illusion and showing the man for what he truly is. No doubt he seems harsh and uncouth to those enthralled by Peterson. But in this book, with surgical precision he eviscerates Peterson’s writings, smokes out their incoherence and insanity, reveals the bones of their underlying malignancy, and displays the results like a neatly filleted kipper. Sadly, like the kipper – and Saruman’s malevolence – Peterson’s words may superficially taste good, but their oily stench is likely to linger for some time. That’s why this book needs to be spread far and wide, to counteract the spell.

Help spread the book far and wide. Pick up a copy of the paperback. And if you’re not in the USA, you can already order it from Amazon. They’ll have it in stock before the end of the week.

“A stake to the heart”

A very personal review of Jordanetics:

When I opened Vox Day’s Jordanetics last week, I was expecting something similar to what Vox has posted in his blog and uploaded in his YouTube livestreams: a fairly straightforward takedown of Jordan B Peterson and his views. The takedown would go a little bit too far (it’s a bit much for me to fathom going that hard at someone with an admitted mental illness, but then again I’m a girl and I don’t go hard at anyone), would probably make a few wisecracks about the all-meat diet, and would pull apart JPB’s books in a way that people couldn’t ignore.

What I did not expect was the stake to the heart….

For, as long as Satan is not integrated, the world is not healed and man is not saved. But Satan represents evil, and how can evil be integrated? There is only one possibility: to assimilate it, that is to say, raise it to the level of consciousness. This is done by means of a very complicated symbolic process which is more or less identical with the psychological process of individuation. In alchemy this is called the conjunction of two principles.
—Carl Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections (as quoted in Jordanetics)

I had a physical reaction to reading this. I am not kidding when I describe it as a punch in the face or a stake to the heart. Remember what I said about not actually having read Carl Jung’s works? This is why that’s a problem.

You see, the way to salvation is not through “integrating” evil through a “very complicated symbolic process.” The way to salvation is through Jesus Christ, and Him only. The narrow path.

To follow Christ, one must reject evil—not integrate it.

This is precisely why I reject those who try to flail their hands impotently and claim that Peterson “is doing good work” or that he “means well” or is “helping so many people”. The man is evil. His gnostic philosophy is evil. His manufactured post-Christian religion is evil. And one of the reasons why so many of his fans and followers don’t recognize this is because none of them read his works or the works of those who have influenced him.

If you are a Christian, you can no more profitably dabble in Jordanetics than in cannibalism, gang rape, or human sacrifice to Quetzalcoatl. Jordanetics requires integrating Satan in order to heal the world and save Mankind. It is just another Middle Way to Hell. It is literally antithetical to Christianity.

Now do you understand why Jordan Peterson is being elevated as the great post-Christian prophet of the post-nationalist West?

JFG reviews Jordanetics

I have no idea whether he’s praising it or ripping it a new one, but for better or for worse, here is JF Gariepy’s livestream review of Jordanetics. Keep in mind that he’s a smart guy who spotted Jordan Peterson was a charlatan before I did, so at the very least he is not inclined to mindlessly defend Peterson like the 12-Rule Path cultists.

There is also a review worth reading at Caffeine and Philosophy. What is particularly interesting about it is that it was written by a blogger who previously wrote an open letter to me criticizing my criticism of Jordan Peterson.

Every rule in Peterson’s 12 new Commandments is provided with a coherent interpretation. As you can see, these interpretations are not particularly flattering, nor are they very attractive to most people:

1. Stand up straight with your shoulders back.
Translation: Be mediocre.
2. Treat yourself like someone you are responsible for helping. (Why won’t you just take your damn pills?)
Translation: God is the balance between Good and Evil.
3. Make friends with people who want the best for you.
Translation: Leave the wounded behind to die.
4. Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today.
Translation: Your head is the only truly safe space.
5. Do not let your children do anything that makes you dislike them.
Translation: Do not excel, because excellence endangers the balance.
6. Set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world.
Translation: Inaction is always preferable to action.
7. Pursue what is meaningful (Not what is expedient)
Translation: To reach Heaven above, you must descend into Hell below.
8. Tell the truth–or, at least, don’t lie.
Translation: You can speak a new world into existence through your lies.
9. Assume that the person you are listening to might know something you don’t.
Translation: Dominate the conversation and control the narrative by keeping your mouth shut.
10. Be precise in your speech.
Translation: Transcend the material world and very carefully choose the words that will alter this reality.
11. Do not bother children when they are skateboarding.
Translation: Heal the world by assimilating its evil.
12. Pet a cat when you encounter one on the street.
Translation: To lift the world out of Hell, you must be willing to accept its pain and suffering into yourself.

If it seems uncharitable to offer “translations” of an intellectual’s stated words, recall that Peterson has fundamentally changed some pretty generally-accepted definitions, including “truth,” “God,” “being,” “order,” and “chaos,” and these new definitions permeate all of the above rules. They literally cannot be understood properly (i.e., through Peterson’s own worldview) without a translation from Jordanetic language into common parlance. Rather, these translations represent an honest upholding of the obligation to charity, not its neglect, as Vox Day is offering the most coherent and internally consistent view of Peterson’s ideas that I have seen.

The fact that this view is not very attractive to most people is no more Vox Day’s fault than is the confusing language which made more coherent interpretations necessary.

Nor is it Vox Day’s fault that Jordan Peterson regularly misrepresents data, theology, history, and sourced articles. It is not his fault that Peterson turns around on people like Milo Yiannopoulos, Faith Goldy, or Brett Kavanaugh, backing down on his support for free speech when push actually comes to shove, and condemning people as hateful or bigoted when they point out a problem with his argument.

Ultimately, it is hard to pick out one of Vox Day’s translations from the 12 Rules and argue that it falsely represents Peterson’s worldview. Just a few examples: Peterson exemplifies rule 3 — leave the wounded behind to die — in his treatment of Milo Yiannopoulos and of Faith Goldy. He exemplifies rule 10 — transcend the material world and very carefully choose the words that will alter this reality — in his various alternative definitions, as well as in his now-infamous interview with Joe Rogan, claiming to have gone 25 days without sleep (presumably as an excuse for his poor performance on the Sam Harris podcast; he claimed the incident happened the day of the interview with Harris).

Taking their best shots

It’s always interesting to see how desperate SJWs, or Peterson fans, are to convince people to move along, move along. There is nothing to see here! But you have to give Roderic at least a little credit. After all, he did go to the trouble of actually buying the book and reading the introduction and one chapter. That’s considerably more than the average fake reviewer ever manages.

A Cringeworthy Read

At the outset Day tells us why he lit into Peterson. Peterson wrote an article that rejected the idea that there is a conspiracy among Jews to promote the careers of fellow Jews over those of more deserving gentiles.. Day knows that this conspiracy exists because Ben Shapiro is doing so much better than he is. What else could explain this if there’s no conspiracy? It’s also very important to Day that everyone realize that the Jews are not smarter on average than other groups, as Peterson insists. The evidence Day provides for this is questionable — you can’t compare IQ averages obtained from different countries no doubt using different methods to measure it in the way that he does, and there are other studies to support the idea that Ashkenazi Jews are more intelligent on average plus an undeniable record of achievement by that group in the arts and sciences. Peterson’s other great sin was to fail to stand up for a conservative journalist who was criticized for being insufficiently tough in her interview with the Daily Stormer. Foreshadowing the rest of the book, Day lambasts Peterson for applying journalistic standards to that journalist that Peterson never meant to apply. It was clear that Peterson was just concerned about the public relations implications of what the journalist did. Regardless, that Peterson disagreed with Day on these issues was enough to convince Day that Peterson is a mountebank full of evil intent and malice who intends to mislead and lie to the public, and everything else that Peterson has ever said or done is put through that filter. Day set out to expose Peterson for the villain that he is and discredit his work through a torrent of videos, postings on social media, and now this book.

Day’s approach is to say that Peterson said something he didn’t say, to misinterpret something Peterson said, to use standards of thought that Peterson never meant to employ, and so on, and then to lambast Peterson for the resulting errors and absurdities. There is also a tendency to find small errors in what Peterson writes and then blow them all out of proportion such that everything else that Peterson wrote is supposedly thereby discredited. If Day had a legitimate criticism to make about what Peterson wrote I couldn’t find it.

For example, in Day’s takedown of Peterson’s first rule chapter, Stand Up Straight With Your Shoulder’s Back, in the 12 Rules book, Day heaps scorn on Peterson’s use of the lobster. Day claims that Peterson wrote that humans “are direct inheritors of the social hierarchy of crustaceans and share common ancestry with them” and therefore share some of their characteristics including brain chemistry and behavior, but of course humans didn’t evolve from lobsters, and Day goes on at length about this error and how it shows that Peterson is an ignorant clown. He even brings in an evolutionary biologist who he quotes to bolster this idea. The problem with this is that Peterson never said that humans evolved from lobsters in any way. The chapter isn’t about evolution. What he says is that lobsters are very primitive and ancient, and yet even at that very early point in history when they appeared they had established social hierarchies. They even use serotonin, a brain chemical, to track their status in the hierarchy, similar to the way human brains use it, our mood being good when our status and our serotonin is up and down when those things are down. (This is not surprising since all bilaterally symmetrical creatures, even worms, use serotonin in their nervous systems.) So, as Peterson says elsewhere, social hierarchies are not something that is created arbitrarily by white males to maintain their dominance, they are very old biology. Peterson uses serotonin and the lobster as metaphors for how we are hard wired to live in hierarchies,

The rest of the chapter is a bizarre misinterpretation of Peterson that ends with a quote from Peterson. The quote does not appear anywhere in the lobster chapter or in the 12 Rules book although Day implies that it does. It may be from something else that Peterson wrote. Without the proper context it’s impossible to say if that quote planted there is misleading us or not. Suffice to say it does not say what the rest of the chapter says. Peterson is not telling us to be mediocre, as Day claims. Peterson is giving us advice about how we can improve ourselves and elevate our social status and thereby our sense of well being. That we will most likely end up neither at the top nor the bottom of the hierarchy but somewhere in the middle is not something to be held up to contempt. It’s just they way things are most of the time. And it’s pretty tough at the top, anyway.

The primary problem, of course, is that I never say that Peterson said something he didn’t clearly say, assume, or imply. I do not construct strawmen. While it can be difficult to ascertain what he is saying due to his intentionally incoherent writing, the connection Peterson draws between lobster and human is clearly not just metaphorical, as you can see for yourself from this selection from 12 Rules for Life, but posits the very claim of common ancestry that Roderic denies.

Their nervous systems are comparatively simple, with large, easily observable neurons, the magic cells of the brain. Because of this, scientists have been able to map the neural circuitry of lobsters very accurately. This has helped us understand the structure and function of the brain and behaviour of more complex animals, including human beings. Lobsters have more in common with you than you might think….
All that matters, from a Darwinian perspective, is permanence—and the dominance hierarchy, however social or cultural it might appear, has been around for some half a billion years. It’s permanent. It’s real. The dominance hierarchy is not capitalism. It’s not communism, either, for that matter. It’s not the military-industrial complex. It’s not the patriarchy—that disposable, malleable, arbitrary cultural artefact. It’s not even a human creation; not in the most profound sense. It is instead a near-eternal aspect of the environment, and much of what is blamed on these more ephemeral manifestations is a consequence of its unchanging existence. We (the sovereign we, the we that has been around since the beginning of life) have lived in a dominance hierarchy for a long, long time. We were struggling for position before we had skin, or hands, or lungs, or bones. There is little more natural than culture. Dominance hierarchies are older than trees.

The part of our brain that keeps track of our position in the dominance hierarchy is therefore exceptionally ancient and fundamental. It is a master control system, modulating our perceptions, values, emotions, thoughts and actions. It powerfully affects every aspect of our Being, conscious and unconscious alike. This is why, when we are defeated, we act very much like lobsters who have lost a fight. Our posture droops. We face the ground. We feel threatened, hurt, anxious and weak. If things do not improve, we become chronically depressed. Under such conditions, we can’t easily put up the kind of fight that life demands, and we become easy targets for harder-shelled bullies. And it is not only the behavioural and experiential similarities that are striking. Much of the basic neurochemistry is the same.

Consider serotonin, the chemical that governs posture and escape in the lobster. Low-ranking lobsters produce comparatively low levels of serotonin. This is also true of low-ranking human beings (and those low levels decrease more with each defeat). Low serotonin means decreased confidence. Low serotonin means more response to stress and costlier physical preparedness for emergency—as anything whatsoever may happen, at any time, at the bottom of the dominance hierarchy (and rarely something good). Low serotonin means less happiness, more pain and anxiety, more illness, and a shorter lifespan—among humans, just as among crustaceans.

And the chapter does not close with “a quote from Peterson” but with an explanation of the paradox that Peterson presents followed by a statement of the true meaning of Peterson’s chapter. As fake reviews go, Roderic tries harder than most, but the effect of his effort is spoiled by his obvious ineptitude. I give it a 3/10.

More honest Peterson defenders are finding that the case made against their hero is a substantial one and should not be dismissed lightly:

Serious Criticism that Cannot Be Dismissed

I was initially very skeptical of these arguments, even writing a post defending Jordan Peterson against these criticisms. But the more I thought about them, the harder they were to ignore.

In substance, the points are substantial, namely:
1) Jordan Peterson has, in documented cases, misrepresented statistics, sources, and history
2) Jordan Peterson has, in documented cases, broken his own rules (namely, by lying)
3) It is asserted that Jordan Peterson’s argument is motivated by fear and cowardice
4) It is asserted that Jordan Peterson’s method of delivery is (seemingly intentionally) vague and left open to multiple interpretations, resulting in confusion and followers who believe that Jordan Peterson is making mutually exclusive assertions
5) Jordan Peterson has, in documented cases, not stood up for free speech when actually pressed on the subject.

These are not the only arguments made, but they were the most substantial and impactful for me personally.

If you have grown to love Jordan Peterson, I understand the anger, suspicion, and outrage you may feel. It was my initial reaction to some of these claims. After feeling that, I could not bring myself to try to shame people for going in for Dr. Peterson. However, I would encourage skeptics and defenders of Peterson to read the book and make the decision for themselves.

I find it interesting that the aspects of the case against Jordan Peterson this reviewer found most convincing are the aspects that I considered little more than laying the foundation for the much more damning elements.

Review of Quantum Mortis AMD #3

Bounding Into Comics reviews QM:AMD #3:

Vox Day’s Quantum Mortis: A Man Disrupted continues its look into the sci-fi world of Graven Tower as he and Detector Hildreth unravel the baffling murder of an alien Royal Prince. This issue, much like the first two, spends most of its time in exposition with a heavy dose of dialogue and not a small amount of fun character moments for our two main characters. We are also introduced to several new characters who, while probably not major players going forward, served their purpose in making issue #3 a highly interesting read, if not a terribly exciting one.

I think the most appealing aspect of this issue, as well as the story on a whole, is the continuing evolution of main star, Graven Tower. It’s easily forgivable if, after the first issue, one would have labeled Tower as a one-note, stereotypical character. A loner who bucks the system and thinks he’s God’s gift to women is a bundle of tropes that we’ve seen attributed to thousands of fun, but shallow characters for years now. Graven Tower, however, continues to grow as the issues march on and his aloofness, paired with his genuine talent, combine to give us a main star who is more nuanced than I thought he was going to be. His attraction to Detector Hildreth and her complete dismissal of his feelings towards her make for some great character moments and some charming sequences of comedy….

Despite the fact that there is a staggering amount of dialogue here and very little action (almost none), issue #3 of Quantum Mortis is the most interesting yet.

Read the whole thing there. It’s very fair and balanced. It’s also interesting to see how some readers are beginning to come around on the idea that the depth of the story matters and that dialogue can be more than a necessary evil to be minimized in favor of SOCK-BAM-BOOM action.

Of course, those who believe there is a shortage of action in Quantum Mortis: A Man Disrupted are likely to be very surprised as the series continues.