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On Jordan Peterson Mon, Dec 10, 2018
I started reading Jordan Peterson's book about 12 rules.  No, this isn't a review of that book.  I read about a chapter and a half, then gave up.  I just couldn't do it.  Parts of it were interesting.  He's similar to Malcolm Gladwell in that he'll tell a completely unrelated story and then suddenly and convincingly explain why it's related to the real point he was trying to make.  I actually like that. 

I've been having a hard time trying to figure out why I didn't like his book, and I think it's as simple as:  the dude talks too much.  Too many words, not enough content.  And that's how I've felt every time I've seen one of his videos or read one of his posts.  What are you saying, and why is it taking so long for you to say it?  But I think that's sort of his appeal.  He tends to almost say things that are somewhat controversial, and then when questioned about them, says, "That's not what I said; you said that."  I feel like he could stand to be a bit more efficient with his language. 

Also he seemed to make a few unsubstantiated claims in the book that were stated almost in passing.  I've read a lot of nonfiction, and much of it is written in a sort of persuasive/explanatory manner, i.e. "This was observed; after it was tested and analyzed, it led to this next thing."  Peterson seems to use a bit of argument from authority, and honestly I'm not sure what he's an authority on (also argument from authority isn't a good way to state your case). 

But then there's the whole other issue of the kinds of people who tend to be attracted to what he says.  He's not alt-right, but he appeals to people who are.  And it's hard to pinpoint exactly how, because of all his evasive language.  But there's just something about it that I find disagreeable and frankly annoying.  This reddit comment sums it up:  "Peterson's got a great gig: pleasing conservatives without ever admitting to supporting them by twisting like an eel rhetorically."  That's exactly it. #entertainment


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