Stefan Molyneux seems to be a reasonably articulate person. He, like Michael Tsarion, often speaks of Friedrich Nietzsche. After the first instalment of “Nietzsche Tests…” we saw how poorly Tsarion represents Nietzsche and Heidegger, using them in an incoherent, cherry picked, quote mined spillage of verbal diarrhea , that seems to be articulate with a point to those who already agree with his conclusions, yet when one really seeks substance, they are shit out of luck.
So we would hope that Molyneux can put the record straight, as Tsarion is only appealing to an audience composed of creatards, misogynists, UFO fanatical racists who love the ideals of an Aryan cult. Hopefully, instead of just criticising his views on Nietzsche, I am looking to expand and improve his views, as there is something that Molyneux believes in overall that I personally have no issue with, a way of enhancing the individual in society, I just find his explanation too overly simplified and ambiguous.
“Zarathustra/the Overman came back and said God is dead” – Only a few seconds in and he has already made an unsubstantiated claim without a quote, or emphasis to back it up.
Zarathustra is the central character in Nietzsches’ “Thus Spake Zarathustra”, Zarathustra is the real or mythical prophet of one of the oldest religious traditions in the world. In what we know as modern day Iran, in the 6th or 7th century BCE, the religion known as Magianism, or Zoroastrianism was the official religion of the Persian Empire. Nietzsche uses Zarathustra as a historical device, giving him a telescopic view from the dawn of philosophy in the West to the 19th Century CE when the book was written.
God is Dead was spoken by the Madman in the Gay Science, Zarathustra’s character is only conveying what is common knowledge, Thus Spake Zarathustra is a book that is written not for the time Nietzsche lived in, he saw it as a book for a future time, possibly very far in the future.
When Zarathustra teaches the Superman, there is no claim from Zarathustra or Nietzsche that he is the superman, or Ubermensch, this is something that Stefan would have to substantiate and I suppose that given this is just a public broadcast that would be slightly dumbed down for a wider audience, he didn’t see it as important.
The Superman is taught through the comparison between ape and man. Man sees the Ape as a laughing stock, the Superman therefore, sees man as a laughing stock too.
The superman is the genius, the saint, the artist, or the philosopher, the likes of Plato, Einstein and Wittgenstein and in my honest opinion, Nietzsche. They are more than man in the sense that they function beyond the functions of the many, but there are always very few of them.
The superman to Nietzsche, is the advancement beyond contempt, vengeance and the despising of life, it is the “meaning of the Earth”. The enemy of the Superman, is the Last Man, as we have to remember Nietzsche uses a play of opposites often in his writing, as the Last Man is the lazy couch potato, who agrees with whatever is spoon-fed while he sits on his arse eating crisps and never changing himself or the world around him in anyway, while blaming the “others” for his own inadequacies through spite, resentment and morality, the Superman is the transcendence from those values into something more creative, as Nietzsche sees the “two fold will” as one will that is either expressed as vengeance, or creativity.
We will hear some “examples” by Stefan later in the video of whom and what he thinks the Superman is.
He then resorts to “An atheist saying God is Dead is like telling a kid there is no Santa Claus by shooting Santa Claus”. Indeed God is Dead is talking about much more than a fixed definition of God in the sense of a literal sky fairy.
Once we get past the pregnant pauses he explains that “There is no external kabuki of values that organizes your life” – Well, this is impressive! Indeed God is Dead is talking about the fact that when values are concerned, we often subjectively divorce those values into what we sometimes call “law”, similar to Kant’s’ Categorical Imperative, if I will it and my actions are Good, then it MUST be a Universal Law. Nietzsche explains also that this is due to one of the four errors in mankind – the error of continually creating new tables of values that we take for a time to be eternal and unconditional.
There is no ordering principle, we don’t derive values and morals from natural law, it’s the other way around, and we justify our values and morality WITH natural law. God is Dead is saying philosophy happens after the fact.
So what is next? What does organise our lives?
“The pattern between democracy and theology is that in both of these systems, people really care about you, who otherwise, wouldn’t.”
So, because you are not being “genuine” and that the “care is not authentic” and that man has constructed society in this way, we shouldn’t have constructs that encourage care? Sounds more like Ayn Rand in the sense that we “shouldn’t be using these constructs to create false relationships” than Nietzsches’ God is Dead.
False beliefs = False Care, which make us fake and disingenuous. What exactly is a fake value? Just because something is external, does not mean it is automatically fake, Nietzsche would not trivialise the matters of morals with conclusions that state it’s either real or fake, true or false, he is asking what the value of the values are, if they still have any breadth in our society and as individuals. It’s more a case of robustness, rather than how real or fake, true or untrue these values are. The reductionism you use here is Randian, not Nietzschean.
“…you have to appeal to the vanity of the average fool, in order to get his vote”.
This is playing to the lowest common denominator, which is targeting the disenfranchised. The politicians don’t really care and they are just sucking up to people, it’s a false vanity not based in reality. Indeed, this is a false relationship and Stefan is stressing how these fake relationships are based on false constructs with something as worthless as vanity.
What’s the solution to this problem then, Stef? Vote for Donald Trump?
To bring this back to Nietzsche, what Stefan is referring to here has little to do with Nietzsches’ God is Dead statement, it’s more of what Nietzsche would call “The Sovereign Individual”, if you go to the second essay, section two of the “Genealogy of Morals”, you will be able to grasp a better explanation of what Stefan is talking about for yourself. The Sovereign Individual is the one who is assigned to be responsible for determined states of affairs and who promises a future, the likes of Napoleon. The Sovereign Individual is the one deemed competent to promise, the “ripest fruit at the end of the tree” which has already gone bitter before it falls from the tree, this is Nietzsches’ extension of Spinoza, who explains that food that nourishes, or rotten food that is poisonous is an analogy for that which combines with the essence of each person and that which repels it, it’s the source of sadness for Spinoza, when people subject themselves to laws and authority, in order to prevent understanding the “other”, what Spinoza calls “Invoking the Tyrant”, or finding the one who will take responsibility so the lazy herd don’t have to worry about anything, or care at all.
What Stefan seems to be subtly promoting, is a Randian Minarchism or Anarchy over democracy, where the individual will be more autonomous and I assume, more “genuine”? Whereas Nietzsche and indeed Spinoza were defining how human affectation works. Again, just because values are external, does not make them fake. Sometimes there is a mutual agreement with external values, like the values you share with Donald Trump. For an anarchist, Stefan, you seem to be advocating the imperative for borders alot and sharing a lack of empathy with anyone outside of a middle class background and especially, those who you consider aliens, or immigrants who are taking all our jobs! Your opposition to the left becomes apparent to, making your position far right. How is fascism the answer, Stefan? How is making Donald Trump the Sovereign Individual , the one who is competent to promise, going to change anything? For someone who has read Nietzsche, you are coming across very naively here and tangential. I did something at the start of the commentary of this clip that Stefan and Tsarion never do, I sourced the material I was referring to, so you can look it up for yourself. I recommend you do that Stefan, f you are watching. Second Essay, Section Two of the Genealogy of Morals.
Stefan’s views of the State are on par with you average Freetard Sovereign Citizen, where anything man made in society has a fault, so throw it out only in exchange for a perfect ideal, as the “Devil of Democracy that plays on the sin of vanity” is out to get you. This is all starting to sound very religious, Stefan.
“They only Care about them as resources that give you power”, Indeed, Stefan , power is a two way street, it comes from the ground up as much as it comes from top down.
“It’s a treat…they get to feel special because politicians are focusing on them”.
“The masses are so ridiculous, and so am I in terms of skill or capacity as I can’t play an instrument, or build a guitar, I can’t do dentistry, I can think, but that doesn’t put corn on the table” – What?! You leap from how the masses form the structure of power from voting due to a play on vanity by politicians to how talentless and non-odontological your skills are? This is your appeal to popularity, I am starting to suspect that you are using Nietzsche to suit your narrative, rather than accurately representing what he was saying without special pleading.
This is your attempt at humility then, Stefan? You also seem to be devaluing thinking in terms of whether or not it produces a material outcome, valuing Vocation above Education – these are not mutually exclusive terms Stefan.
“…in religion, supernatural beings are obsessed with you” – So, the state is just like religion, only when it’s democratic. Democracy would be okay if people were more intelligent, or knew how to build guitars while performing oral surgery, is that it? They would need to think, Stefan, something that your audience will lack if they think you are being consistent in this podcast, but of course, that doesn’t put corn on the table, so fuck that.
I agree, sycophants are annoying people, so why is it that you constantly DMCA critics who are obviously not sycophants, in order to silence them? Didn’t Nietzsche advocate sharpening your sword, picking your enemies and being the best you can possibly be with what you have? Hardy Anarchic actions there either, Stefan.
“it all comes from whatever is left hollow within you, will almost certainly be filled up by corruption, evil people will offer to meet those needs within you, this is why I focus so much on parenting in particular, if you have a strong and secure bond with your parents, then you don’t have a void, a loneliness, a lack of attachment, a need within you that other people, can go fishing in and pull out your very heart”
What? If you were bought up right, you would be totally fulfilled? Only those who don’t have strong bonds with their parents will be susceptible to the marketing tactics, the play of vanity by politicians, they will be the only ones who can’t do your fillings in your molars and build guitars that you can pluck with your extracted wisdom teeth?
This is totally unsubstantiated nonsense. Just because someone has a better relationship with their parents, does not mean they will not purchase crap they don’t need, or have a hole to fill, or that they will not vote for an incompetent arsehole. Where in Nietzsche is this? How have you managed to go from God is Dead, a statement that holds there is no ordering principle, to this? When you speak of people who like feeling special and having their vanity played to, it now seems like a projection and an appeal to popular opinion. You are calling out those who are disenfranchised, usually through your deFOO nonsense, which is a classic cult move; you are making them feel special, almost like you are calling them. How is that any different from what you claim to be against?
There are plenty of spoiled kids who make the same dumb mistakes that kids from troubled families make, I came from a good home and I certainly didn’t feel like I was fulfilled in my life, its called nihilism. It’s a point in human existence when we reevaluate our choices, some people blame others and request sympathy and pity, blaming others, whereas others are more resilient and resourceful, we start with what we have, not what we ought to have.
Nietzsche pretty much brings you to that conclusion, but it has to be reached esoterically, not preached exoterically. Just splitting away from family doesn’t make you a “genuine” individual, because you believe “they” are socially conditioning you to have a hole to fill. Everyone has a hole to fill and your example of how we determine who has holes and who doesn’t based on some pop psychology about a traumatic childhood is nothing less than plagiarism of Nietzsche.
“…they end up in a bad relationship, yeah”
Bad in the sense that they require sycophants and that they want to have their voice heard in a society that has a political structure that allows it? That could be anyone under the age of 30.
“You end up in the military, you end up in the police, you end up cheering whatever local political leader there is, you end up cheering for war, so if we have our needs met, when we are little, then people can’t give us plastic food and tell us if we eat it, we will be full.”
Again, this could be anyone under the age of 30, or anyone who has never questioned the value of the popular consensus. It is not only relative to those with bad childhoods. You seem to be at odds with yourself, as you now cheer for Donald Trump, who advocates the worst possible social constructs imaginable, you clearly have a very far right view that will inevitably invoke the tyrant, the Tyrant being Trump.
How we are supposed to take you seriously, when you don’t even practice what you preach Stefan?
You then give an analogy that describes either a penis pump or a sexy woman to have sex with, why would you take the fake thing etc, is that all that bothers you? Whether or not something is built on authenticity? Whatever happened to being the best we can be with what we have?
Nihilism in Nietzsche’s view, is dealt with either positively, or degenerative. What are these needs, Stefan?
“Governments are trying more and more to get children away from their parents” – That’s funny, coming from you, Stefan. What is deFOOing again?
“If you grow up without your parents, then you kids grow up with unmet needs for connection and for unity and what Freud calls the Oceanic feeling of oneness with the universe, if you grown up without coddling, then you don’t feel like a complete picture”
Is it time to come home to daddy now?
“You feel like a small piece of a jigsaw puzzle that needs to fit into something bigger.”
Everyone has this drive, Stefan; it’s called the communitarian will. The Individual and the Community Will are inseparable Stefan, you seem to see this as very binary, either/or. The individual is defined by the community; we act within a community, as a part of it. Individuality is not possible if there is no community in which to be the other.
“Back to Nietzsche, so Nietzsche said”
Thank God, who is dead, that he came back to the opening point of this video.
“God is Dead and what that means IS, I think, there’s a lot of interpretation in Nietzsche”
Hmm, pre-emptive special pleading,
“Values are no longer provided to you by synthetic drama”.
No! Your opening definition made more sense, this is you trying to fit Nietzsche to your own narrative, the same plagiarism that Rand tried on.
God is Dead is asking what is next for mankind, now that there is no ordering principle of natural laws, idealism, his vision does not progress from A-B, it’s the end of the rationalist project, or the search for the irrefutable law of man, and it states that the drives and values of man come from man, not from an external realm of forms that can be known “absolutely”.
How do you know there is such a thing as authenticity anyway? How do you know if you are experiencing novelty, genuine care, or authenticity of being? How will removing yourself from your family through deFOO, or reducing the government to a small administration or no Government magically bring about this genuine, authentic, novelty that you speak of? Humans are humans and will behave according to habits, what they have.
“You are not going to be bribed, you are not going to be punished, in your life choices, people will not inflict and enforce their values upon you, involuntarily”
So, all involuntarily actions are a lie? So being made to go to school and learn skills and be educated is a lie? All your friends you made at school, all of those were fake? I mean, they had as much choice as you regarding being there.
“How is mankind going to survive without being force fed values?”
The will to survive is of much less importance than the will to power, people risk their lives in order to be remembered, to leave a legacy and have an impact on the world.
It’s asking how the will to power will be expressed now that the informing spirit of Christianity is waning. Prior to that, the Greeks had a very different morality that was focused more on the noble morality and Christianity is the morality of the weak and the enslaved.
You have gone off point faster than a squirrel on crack, Nietzsche is not asking that at all, this is your own narrative that doesn’t even come close to being justified with God is Dead, you make it sound like a drug addiction to these values and like this was a conscious choice and immediate.
“…When values are not accepted by force…”.
That’s your narrative again, Stefan. I can see why you asked for special pleading. By your example, we will be accepting anything that’s pulled out of someone’s ass because they over-hype Nietzsches other line “There are no facts, only interpretations”, which was referring to morality and truth as conceptions.
The influence you have on your audience is always very political. These concepts cant be discussed without it in your community.
“When it’s no longer value rape, what is going to happen?” –
I can’t even say anymore, as you’re not even talking about what Nietzsche is saying anymore, you are intent on pushing your own agenda.
“Well, then there is nihilism” – Actually, I disagree when I follow your logic. I would be relieved that I was no longer being value raped, liberated, but your solutions are too simplistic to reach that conclusion exoterically, i.e. through deFOO.
“It was a big problem in the 19th century.”
So, it wasn’t before, or now? Nietzsche sees time as circular and flat, that whatever is, has always been and will be again, there is just the here and the now for Nietzsche and in the eternal return is the will to power and amor fati leading to life affirmation, this is the way to the superman, a dialectical monism of the will.
You haven’t conveyed the God is Dead consequences at all here, you see time as a straight line in the sense that “this happened then that happened”, leading you to believe that they never happened before and that they were authentic and novelty, or genuine. The Genealogy of Morality and Thus Spake Zarathustra both offer arguments that sand firmly against all that “straight lies” linear, A-B thought.
A consequence of the eternal return is that there is no free will, no novelty, therefore nothing genuine can happen, only what is, what was and what will occurs and reoccurs in the moment, the now, we either accept this, or we don’t and it’s the rejection that Nietzsche magnifies for us. He asks why we want meaning, why is it so important to have meaning? If the void is part of reality, if there is a thing we know as “nothing” and it’s inescapable, then why would we reject it and deny it? That would be life denying. There are always empty spaces, gaps to fill. He’s saying that “God” means there is nothing new to know, that there is an absolute. He shows how the opposite is true, that having an all knowing realm or being brings forth nihilism, and accepting empty space and nihilism without these absolutes actually liberates us, the new thing, is to accept there are no new things!
This is brings me back to my previous question, how do you know if you are experiencing novelty, authenticity, genuine care, when all that can happen, has happened and will happen again? We always reject that everything is known, we find truth in untruth, morality in immorality – we are the antithesis of nature itself. We push rocks up mountains, knowing we will never make it. The eternal return, the abysmal thought is Nietzsche expressing how much he admires humans and the ironies, contradictions and imperfections.
For Nietzsche, there is the general survival of existence, then there is the will to power. He starts with this and nothing more.
“Nietzsche did not believe, I think “ – pre-emptive special pleading again! “we have this desire for good and it’s innate within us, we have this fear of evil, that manifested itself in religion, he said no, no, that’s not how it works, how it actually works is that religion is an artificial structure that was imposed for a variety of reasons we don’t have to get into it (convenient) it was imposed upon humanity and it defined what our values are, when god goes and organized religion goes, there is nothing left, in the moment”
Define artificial. He said neither of those things. Nietzsche explains in the Genealogy of Morality that it was the herd instinct that created Christianity, or slave morality. Morals that are a consolation prize, a belief for those who feel disempowered, like the Jews when they were enslaved by the Romans.
He is NOT blaming the Jews by the way, he’s saying that given the conditions, it was inevitable. When people have no power, they try to express power in any way they can, this is what slave morality is and is where “evil” was born as a concept, as a way to define the masters, the nobles. The slaves were resentful and created a fantasy of another world and a self righteous morality that often villianised the other, or the enemy, it denies life and values a world that eclipses this life once we die, it gravitates towards the objective and turns the other cheek, blesses weakness, as there is no choice but to see these actions and values as worth something.
If you are in chains, you have no choice but to turn the other cheek. Saying it is artificial is like saying religion did it all wrong and ought to have done it this way, whereas Nietzsche is just saying, this is how it is when you subject humans to this environment, we will demonise and villianise that what we can’t have, or can’t be, the negation becomes the creative act. This is where the twofold will expresses itself as pity, sympathy and revenge, although it somehow appears to be compassionate.
Nietzsches’ play of opposites shows how what we think is good, is actually quite harmful when you really look at it.
You make it sound like there was a pre ordained conspiracy to make people believe these values, it just wasn’t, it was the outcome of the will, it’s just how humans are and always have been. Time is a circle, what was, has been and will be again and again and again.
Every time you get Nietzsche very wrong and want to push your agenda, you start special pleading and take longer to deliver your points.
Power is a two way street, at one time, art expressed the noble, master morality during the time of the Greeks, but when Christianity came along, the slave morality was expressed. That morality is waning now, so what is next? The individual has made these values devalue themselves, just like how these values valued themselves into being how they are expressed by humans, nothing artificial, this is as concrete as it gets, drives, values, desires and will, symbolic and symbiotic.
Your straw man about how there is no innate Good desire, is not even close to explaining what you are talking about, the origin of good is where the Genealogy starts off, sure he show that there is no way of truly knowing the origin as it has many uses, two different uses depending on which morality you see in the world, master or slave, but one thing he does know for sure, is that Good and Evil, Good and Bad, don’t come from an external source of some kind, like a world of forms., or a sky fairy, they come from human beings and ae defined depending on the society they live in, there are no facts, only interpretation remember? What this means, is that morality is subject to relative realism and perspectivism.
You almost sound like you personally wish there was a God, would it be authentic then? You seem to speak as though what Nietzsche calls the “source and cause” of morals and values, is artificial, whereas Nietzsche and myself included would just say “That’s how it is”.
“When the death of God was truly understood in society” – you mean, amongst the academics at the time? Nietzsche was hardly popular when he was alive, nobody knew what he was talking about and didn’t want to know, as they wanted rules and absolutes, certainty. Thus Spake and all of his works are written for a time when these values are bought into question.
“…end of external values being imposed at gun point would lead to nihilism and people would recoil from nihilism and run into dictatorships, therefore when God dies, man Gods must arise”
I take it you are mangling the line in God is Dead, that says “Must not we ourselves become Gods?” – He’s not talking about dictators! He’s talking about going the way of the creator; the creation becomes the creator, the creator of the values that are no longer seen as external and what everyone is laughing about earlier in the passage, as they see man as a laughing stock. It’s reflective, not projective! It’s not a prophecy either, Stefan, you really do sound like you want God to be real and you are making a tyrant out of Nietzsche, exactly like how his sister and Tsarion do.
He’s saying there are no restrictions. You read him so negatively, you have clearly despised what he has to say, you recoil from nihilism. Nihilism in the sense that Nietzsche sees it, is an opportunity to find what you really care about in the void.
Again, you are using Nietzsche for your own ends here, politics. This is not at all very helpful for someone who hasn’t read Nietzsche.
“Be they Hitler or Stalin, or Marx or Mussolini” –Marx and Nietzsche say pretty much the same thing, that ideals come from down here and not up there, they are just materialists, that’s all. I see yet again, you are standing against communism, making this all political. You can add Donald Trump to that list.
“Atheists treat the civil authorities as God; the idea that we flourish in the absence of aggression, for when God dies, man Gods must arise”
As I explained, this is not what he means at all, he’s talking about being creative, free to try out new ideas and perspectives, explore new territory that rationalism and idealism made impossible.
Atheism is a lack of belief in Gods, that’s it. It doesn’t come with an innate structure of society. Citation needed here, I am sure if you actually ask people in the atheist community, they are not worshipping the state at all, they are just as pissed off as you or me, this is a straw man and a lazy factual error, how dare you lie openly like this to your audience, in fact, this makes you just as bad as Tsarion, a name dropper, quote miner and cherry picker. Is supporting Donald Trump exempt from your political proselytisation? I see more and more projection the more I look upon your channel.
You can roll off rhetoric well, Stefan, but it’s the substance that counts.
I won’t even begin to take what you said here seriously, as I don’t want to jive with your ideology that would be better expressed as Randism, which makes selfishness the ideal, doesn’t take much to encourage this. You can argue it’s just rational self interest, but the target audience in your case Stefan, are hardly going t be empathetic towards those who are different and outside of their exceptionalist ideology. Those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it, Stefan.
This is not Nietzsche, the first line that defined God is Dead was and then you went off on this massive tangent. Ultimately I want the individual to be the thing that stands in the empty space too, but it’s not that simple by just excluding and cherry picking what you don’t like in reality to suit your narrative, one does not exist without the other, they emerge together.
That will do for now, but this turns out to be just as bad as Tsarions’ twaddle, which at first I thought it wouldn’t be, as Stefan seemed more articulate. .Both Tsarion and Stefan seem to play on the ignorance of their audiences and perceive philosophy in much the same way that pop psychology plagiarists do, that if it’s just about concepts that are arcane and abstract, then you can just make shit up as you go along, as long as you use the lingo, no one will notice. Stefan often villianises in categories through association, women, democrats, lefts, Marxists, Jews and whoever is against his undeclared far right position while claiming to be for anarchy, are but a few of the uncontested views of the opinionated Stefan Molyneux. The deFOO tactics and constant anathema towards those Stefan considers the enemy is classic religious shunning and cult behaviors.