Molly Interviews Tom Woods - The Man And The Moment Have Met

Neil Parille's picture
Submitted by Neil Parille on Thu, 2017-05-25 01:58

Commenting on Neils Moly link, on intelligence:

Andrew Atkin's picture

It has always seemed a bit strange to me that there would be radical differences in intelligence between humans who are biologically the same (Yeah...let's not talk about race differences here). The human brain is extremely expensive, biologically speaking. We nearly kill (or kill) our mothers making them give birth to our massive heads, so the brain hardware is very costly (not to mention the metabolic expense). And so it seems a bit ridiculous for the human animal to inherit crappy software as a natural condition, as good software offers an optimised brain *yet* with no adaptive drawbacks. Hence, you would think we would have selected for near-perfect software in all human specimens, as the evolutionary pressure to make the software near-perfect is enormous.

What we do know is that our species exploits specialization (the division of labour), and the obvious example is in the differences we see between a male and female's brain, where each sex can specialise to what it's best suited for (men building houses, and women changing nappies etc). I speculate that this probably works on a more detailed level, where maybe we are all "supposed to be" a different collection of strengths and weaknesses - all running specialized software, to a degree.

If so, we should maybe think twice before trying to turn the world into into a teeming mass of super nerds. Because although modern institutional society demands a lot of this kind of intelligence, we could lose important intellectual attributes in a then overly homogeneous species, that might otherwise had been invaluable.

First Hander

Doug Bandler The Second's picture

He has systematically sought out thought on these type of issues in a very first-handed way, and introduced them to his large audience.

This is something no one in the Objectivist world does (at least the mainstream O'ist world, there may be some outliers like Mark). There are a growing number of these types of people in the libertarian movement but Objectivists have isolated themselves from the entire intellectual world. Whatever Moly's flaws, he offers value to his audience. I don't see what value Orthodox Objectivism offers. Rand has offered value in her works but the Objectivist movement has offered very little on top of that. And it has some serious drawbacks.

I like Molyneux.


edpowell's picture

Stefan's style is something some people love and others hate. He is also over-the-top egotistical, though this type of behavior has never before turned off Objectivists.

On the other hand, he is one of the few public libertarians to address a number of important issues, primarily the biological influences on human behavior and capabilities, something almost no one in the Objectivist/libertarian movement has taken on. He has systematically sought out thought on these type of issues in a very first-handed way, and introduced them to his large audience. Contrary to Brook et al., who are radical egalitarians with respect to human beings, and who all deny any biological basis for influences on human action ("Determinists!" they howl at their current straw man) Stefan goes where the data leads, and in that he is quite admirable.

I personally enjoy his interviews (really conversations) but can't stand his life advice call-in shows, which I skip. There are far worse public intellectuals in the world than Stefan, even among Objectivists and libertarians.

Another Great Interview on Intelligence

Neil Parille's picture

Molyneux ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

... to me is emblematic of the reason it's going to be hard for Good to win over Evil in our current battle. He displays a sadly potent (seductive to many) blend of solipsism and empiricism. He proceeds as though his mind were the only reality, and at the same time that mind is clogged with a zillion discrete concretes that he makes no attempt to tie together into a coherent whole, while insisting on boring his audience to death with every last one of them. Classic case of "the anti-conceptual mentality," as I imagine Ayn Rand would have said. No question he's one of the good guys, but is of no use, since he can't organise his own thoughts, let alone a crusade, and seems less interested in doing so than indulging his penchant for interminable ramblings. YouTube is awash in this kind of wankery. It's a great venue for the contest of ideas, but shows the contestants to be more interested in preening than proselytising. If only Rand hadn't praised "egoism." As usual she didn't mean by it what everyone else does, but everyone else has construed her to mean exactly that. Galt spare us from such "ego"s.

I find it interesting how

Andrew Atkin's picture

I find it interesting how many people who become very popular online are "dorks"...maybe they're only dorks because we all are, and they don't try to hide it and are therefore less repressed and more interesting? People who are too afraid of looking the fool are always fucking boring Smiling


Mark Hunter's picture

Seems you’re playing with words. Tastelessness may be acquired but it’s still tasteless.

The 600,000 can keep listening to Mr. Molyneax. If you are right that all-in-all he helps the immigration patriot movement, we can recover from tastelessness much more easily than expelling legions of Third Worlders. I for one have no use for him.

Molyneux is a gateway

Doug Bandler The Second's picture

Internecine fighting should be avoided but I don’t see Molyneaux as on my side. I imagine he turns away prospective “converts.”

Molyneux is an acquired taste and I understand that he's not for everybody. But I like that he deals with subjects like race realism and sex realism while still operating from a pro-liberty perspective. There aren't many out there that do that. He's also a "gateway" to rightwing politics in general. He does have an influence. I think bigger than the ARI believe it or not. He has over 600k subscribers. I wish there were more right-wing libertarian thinkers that dealt with the same subject matter. Its good to have options other than just Cato, Reason, or the ARI.


Mark Hunter's picture

Every Molyneaux podcast I’ve tried to get through he ends up being repulsive. I’d stopped trying until this latest because it was recommended. Tom Woods made some excellent points but it wasn’t worth putting up with the interviewer.

In my book taste is more important than saying something informative now and then. I’d rather hear the information from someone else, and there are better men than Molyneaux to hear it from.

Internecine fighting should be avoided but I don’t see Molyneaux as on my side. I imagine he turns away prospective “converts.”

Good interview

Doug Bandler The Second's picture

He does talk alot but he usually has intelligent things to say so I can forgive him for that. But this was an excellent interview. Woods gets the importance of immigration and how wrong libertarians have been on this subject. Listening to this interview I realized that such a discussion would be impossible for Objectivsts. Talking about the virtues of Christianity and its contribution to the West would infuriate O'ists who do exactly what Molyneux described; ie ignoring Christianity and only thinking that the Greeks were important. Yaron Brook has said idiotic things like that.

Tom Woods, Yea - Stefan Molyneux, Nay

Mark Hunter's picture

Molyneaux talks too much. Listened to about halfway, all I could take of that chatterbox.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.