Thoughtful, devastating critique of Jordan Peterson's "12 Rules for Life"

Originally published at:


C’mon, Cory;

Haven’t we already suffered enough?


It’s because Jordan’s advice is a “fast-acting, short-term analgesic that will make many of his readers feel better temporarily, while failing to address their underlying problem. On the contrary, the book often fuels the very sense of entitled need which, when it goes unsatisfied, causes such pain and outrage.”

This fits into Peterson’s YouTube lecture formula that I noted elsewhere:

  1. Anodyne statement about the need to “get one’s life together” in a way that’s totally obvious to anyone who’s a well-adjusted adult with life experience. Often one of his “rules for life.”

  2. Just-so story about gender or racial differences explaining why it’s now so difficult for poor oppressed white males to follow this advice despite it being the natural order of things.

  3. Cherry-picked quoting of impressive study and/or respected dead white male thinker to bolster this view of traditional ways bogged down by feminism, affirmative action, etc.

  4. “So, if QED all right-thinking people should believe this should we not also give due consideration to…”

  5. Brief and oblique shout-out to alt-right talking point which is a more extreme version of 2.

  6. Criticism of a society that won’t give this idea a hearing even though he’s “proved” reasonable people and scientific research support it.

  7. Self-pitying story about how he’s been “censored”, too.

Step 7, by the way, is where he asks people to pitch a few bucks into his collection basket because “freedom.”


Give people an easy lie and a difficult truth and they’ll almost always cling to the lie. I have wanted to believe something better than this about people for over 35 years but sadly… it seems to be very much the norm.


Here we go again…



I started reading this but got a bit in and just thought “I can’t even.” and just walked away.

Mr Peterson can just go fuck himself.



What Peterson is offering to begin with is an easy truth: useful self-help advice that’s obvious to anyone who isn’t profoundly entitled and damaged. But then he starts tarting it up with impressive-sounding nonsense to differentiate it from earlier statements of the same advice and to draw in prime groups of known marks (in his case, members of the alt-right).

In this he’s no different from the Cult of $cientology or NXIVM or any other self-help scam that preys on the vulnerable, insecure, entitled and weak-willed.

What’s the over-under on how long it will take before this hits the news feed of one of his disciples who posts his first wall-o-text?

Also, now obligatory:


Are we allowed to place bets?


T-minus 5, 4, 3…


Just like that heroic archetype, Jesus.


People come into this world naive- and if they have average or slower than average minds, they may go their entire lives believing everyone else must think like they do. Those who come to different conclusions about stuff might not just be wrong, they may also be actually evil.

Those with faster than normal minds make similar assumptions about the world at first, but much more often are able to revise that view.


I’m glad she read that dreck and critiqued it so nicely - both senses of the word - so that I didn’t have to. Having boiled and eaten enough lobsters over the years, I know the winners and losers. From my point of view, the winners are the big lobsters with lots of meat. I suppose from the lobsters point of view, the winners are the lobsters not in my pot.


fast-acting, short-term analgesic that will make many of his readers feel better temporarily, while failing to address their underlying problem.

It’s self-help masturbation and that means the people who subscribe to this bullshit are a bunch of wankers and jerk-offs.


There is no such thing as toxic masculinity. Being entitled, abusive, misogynistic, homophobic, and/or emotionally repressed is not masculine at all. We need to get that through our thick male heads. Masculine traits include courage, loyalty, kindness, honesty, bravery, passion, and confidence. Of course, all of these are also traits of the feminine which is kinda my point.
In short, being a childish little punk is miles away from being a man.


I started reading it and got to the part about dominant lobster brains dissolving and being replaced by subordinate brains. “That can’t be true” I thought to myself and tried to track it down.

It apparently cites a study done on Crayfish, which I don’t have access to. Whether or not that study says what he claims it does is another thing. By the way, neither Lobsters nor Crayfish have brains like we think of them…

I don’t suppose anyone has access to a journal hosting the following?

Yeh S-R, Fricke RA, Edwards DH (1996) “The effect of social experience on serotonergic modulation of the escape circuit of crayfish.” Science, 271, 366-369.


Thank you!

As expected, it doesn’t say what he claims it says. Insert Fry Shocked gif here.

The details:

The paper sees some changes in reactions to hormones and brain chemistry after a failed contest for dominance in a tank. It’s speculated that there may be some changes in neural pathways, or activatable receptors behind the change, but it’s just speculation. Hardly melting down the dominant brain, and regrowing a subordinate one.

Also it’s crayfish, not lobster.

Also it’s in captivity, not in the wild. Many species of vertebrates and invertebrates behave very differently in the wild vs. captivity.

Also the changes were noted to be reversible.

Summarizing it like he did, especially with his background, was deeply deceitful.

He is full of shit.


Can’t we agree to just stop caring about Peterson? Or, more correctly, to continue not caring? Can’t we make a pact? Suddenly, he’s bloody everywhere.


I’m no lawyer, but I think this falls under the recent Supreme Court ruling

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