On the far-right end of the spectrum was alt-right vloggers like Faith Goldy, who has been referred to by the Cut as a “white nationalist poster girl” and appeared on the podcast for the neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer; and James Allsup, a member of the white supremacist group Identity Evropa . The researchers defined all three as “contrarian” communities, or groups formed in opposition to the perceived wave of political correctness on the left. If the intellectual dark web were to acknowledge its place within the conservative tradition — or perhaps if the public were to acknowledge it for them — this might have some beneficial effects for American political discourse.
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And this is the same hatred, fear, resentment and paranoia we hear in Critical Theory, whose students are flooding the West with their revolutionary program. You’re correct – it should be a joke, but some how IDW is taken seriously by the radical left, as though criticising their ideas on “fairness” is equivalent to other Dark Web activity, like violent child pornography. It shows the depth of their dishonesty that they should attempt to qualify anyone who disagrees with them, even sanely and rationally, as being beyond the pale. His argument in The Bell Curve was that the economy was shifting to a model where intellectual rather than physical skills would fetch a premium in the job market and where a “cognitive elite” would have a leg up and leave groups less cognitively blessed in the dust. Which is what has happened, both to blacks and the white working class. But that was raciss, said the social moralists.
The world of truth is too dangerous for these vulnerable persons, so we must bubble wrap knowledge as to not harm their sensibilities, so the logic goes. Well, in bubble wrapping the world, we disguise its reality, and that is a surefire way to cause catastrophe. We can’t put blinders on certain corners of the world and expect to come out with a proper understanding of how it functions. The political climate is not hospitable to truth-seekers. The only reason the Intellectual Dark Web is “dark” is because it is controversial to be an open inquirer. I get the appeal of the I.D.W. I share the belief that our institutional gatekeepers need to crack the gates open much more.
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Brooks calls instead for a return to universalism because “good and liberating ideas, like bad and reactionary ones, have thrived in a variety of cultural settings”. Yet as time went on, what the ‘renegades’ of the Intellectual Dark Web were really reneging on was their previous commitment to the Left. As Brooks writes, “ generate their audience by publishing a neverending stream of ‘oh my God, look at these leftists being crazy’ articles”. The IDW’s lodestar is Jordan Peterson, the Canadian clinical psychologist and self-help guru who likes to talk about hierarchies and gender differences while dissecting Left-wing totalitarianism for the YouTube generation. Peterson has been preaching the same material for years.
- “I want to give more of a platform for people on the left who are in support of liberal values,” she says.
- First of all, the world is an offensive place naturally, and secondly, most anything can be construed as offensive.
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- He has also estimated that some 20 percent of Muslims worldwide are Islamists or jihadis.
To name just one you have a couple of quite religious types plus a very vocal Atheist . There is a lot of matter that this group would disagree on. What seems to be the issue is that they have dared to criticise the religion of identity politics – a singular issue that they are united on. Despite his opposition to Peterson and company, Brooks is of the Marxist-influenced Left, which has little time for the hair-splitting narcissism of identity politics and what he refers to contemptuously as the “shallow analysis” of the “ultra-woke”.
A Case Study of Jordan Peterson and Ben Shapiro
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But self-actualisation has its obvious limitations. As Brooks notes, “sometimes people’s houses aren’t in order precisely because of the condition of the world”. In contrast to many of his comrades on the Left, however, Brooks argues that, rather than dismissing Jordan Peterson’s fanbase — largely white, male and self-taught — as ‘deplorables’, the Left should try to win them over to a more substantive programme. “One of the most dangerous things the Left can do is to write off the demographic to which Peterson appeals because of its relative racial and gender privilege,” Brooks writes.
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Yet there are pitfalls to this audience-supported model. This probably helps explain why some people in this group talk constantly about the regressive left but far less about the threat from the right. The intellectual dark web is a label which has been applied to some commentators who oppose identity politics, political correctness, and cancel culture in higher education and the news media within Western countries.
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However, I agree that Ben Shapiro seems like an insufferable twit. Why does it seem to be nearly impossible for a journalist in almost any rag out there to present a fair and accurate picture of Jordan Peterson? All we ever get is an invidious caricature that totally fails to represent who he is and what he stands for. It is extremely poor, it makes me distrust journalism as a profession, and the only reason I find myself engaging with it is to try in my small way to push back on its shallowness and reflex groupthink.
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This would probably find a less substantial audience if people like Michael Brooks stopped trying to resuscitate Marxism-Leninism. Brooks contrasts the reactionary Left-baiting of the IDW with his own fruitless search – encapsulated in the pages of the socialist magazine Jacobin— for a “rejuvenated, humane, internationalist, and appealing version of the politics of the Finland station”. This is a welcome blast against the dominant fetish for what Brooks describes as “drawing artificial lines between cultures”.
Envy and resentment at the success of others will rot your soul. Oh, and stand up straight and make your damn bed. We can’t search for truth through any other principle because that means we would have to afford special protections to those claiming offense. As soon as we do that, we elect authorities who decide what is offensive and what isn’t, and that is where the danger lies. How many times have we seen professors, student groups, and individuals punished for perceived offense determined by institutional authorities? It is for this very reason why our institutions are failing us.
But they should not indulge the intellectual dark web’s veneer of novelty or appeals to transpolitical reason. These thinkers ought not to be allowed to pretend that its ideas are, historically speaking, anything other than conservative. The book’s author is Michael Brooks, an American political YouTuber and a socialist. For Brooks, the IDW use a veneer of ‘reason’ and ‘science’ to justify prevailing inequalities. In a context where Donald Trump is the occupant of the White House and neo-liberal capitalism remains dominant (Jeff Bezos is forecast to become the world’s first trillionaire by 2026), the IDW’s cringeworthy posturing as a “persecuted minority” is glib and largely vacuous, in Brooks’s telling. As Brooks writes, the IDW “brand themselves as unclassifiable renegades even as they all share elements of an unmistakable anti-left agenda”.
First of all, the world is an offensive place naturally, and secondly, most anything can be construed as offensive. Offense is subjective by nature and largely determined by individual temperament. A claim of subjective emotion can hardly be invalidated. This means that scientific hypotheses are being rejected on claims of subjective emotion instead of meticulous checking. Trial of Socrates, who was sentenced to death for impiety and corrupting the youth of the community. Those who seek truth aren’t afraid of defying society and are usually punished for it.