Rick Roderick on Nietzsche on Knowledge and Belief [full length]



last time in our in our last lecture we were screaming about the United States government its many failings I want to make clear something and unfortunately in the current context I tell you that many of you who came here to hear a course on philosophy and human values probably expected more philosophy and less on the human value side well I hope some of you were here yesterday when I ran through a series of ethical theories and I think I gave some arguments that was my professionalizing work in other words that was the display of my rough credentials to do this now I'm on to a topic of which I consider and so far in a way it's just groundwork for the other stuff because all of the great ethical theories of the past in a way do contain utopian moments in a way being a stoic and epicurean being someone who pursues excellence are all interesting and historically recoverable in a certain sense projects what I pointed out today is that the situation in which we find ourselves in modern life in the present means that there are other conditions that must be met to even pursue those projects so I don't see the two sets of remarks this is different as you might think it's not as I did philosophy one day in politics the next because such water-tight distinctions are not viable between philosophy and politics an indica and again before return to Marx let me try to indicate that the priority of politics is marked even in the Greeks where the last thing that Aristotle wrote was a constitution for Athens he wrote that you know last after he had written the metaphysics the physics the logic and all this I have a feeling that he thought that Constitution as important as anything he wrote we certainly know about Plato writing the Republic that that remark about the best kind of state and that debate in Plato is certainly as important as anything he wrote so in a way even the classic philosophers the ones that the people from the National Association of scholars love understand that politics as it were sets those boundary conditions and those necessary conditions within which human beings can pursue things like a good life for themselves and so those are the conditions that I was discussing last time and trying to discuss them in the context of the present and for that I found Marx helpful in one respect I want to point point out something about that though there is a severe problem with the writings in the work of Marx that's all too obvious to us today and that's that the assumption that workers shaping and forming their own modes of work wouldn't fall victim to the power of the state which would now step in in place of a capitalist class exploit their labor in the same way turn I'm not exactly in the same way here they'd use different words and all as I think pretty much from the bottom it's hard to tell the difference but you know they'd use a different ideology but his expectation that the state would do more than administer and would actually control the life of people was a blot was an absolute blind spot in his work but then look at our liberal theorists for them an equal blind spot is that the while they pay lip service to wanting to constrain the state you know and let free enterprise flourish that led when it was tried and it hasn't been tried in a long time when it was tried it led to a great deep worldwide depression that scared the capitalist class so much that no one's ever tried it again since and no one plans to President Reagan came into office promising to shrink the size of the state as you may know as a matter of fact it's larger than ever so that the process of a world becoming bureaucratically more complex and intrusive at the level of the State is a world phenomenon it's not localizable the process of an economy becoming ever more diverse commodifying every more ever more sections of our lives until we replace the Sunday stroll to use another example I mean I'm old enough to remember that when I go with my granddad we'd go for a stroll on Sunday well that can't be done now without a relation to the commodity it could be but rarely is we're socialized to go for a stroll someplace else on Sunday now the mall is open in the afternoon even in North Carolina after church they open it up after church you stroll through the mall so that you can both stroll and shop sort of the strolling aspect is still important I mean I'm not saying that it's not kind of kinky to walk around and watch people buy things it's a music so I don't want you to think that that Marx has a critique of capitalism only and that's all I'm interested in the critique of the state and the state bureaucracy is also important and I've mentioned the name of Max Weber but I didn't bring in any of his books they're real thick real boring and I've suggested that a sense for what a modern bureaucracy is like can be evoked from reading the novels of Franz Kafka things like before the law and the trial give you more of a sense of being caught in a modern bureaucracy and all of you have that sense anyway if you've you know moved to a new city and tried to hook up a telephone and they say go to room 238 you go to room 238 and they say where'd you come from who'd you talk to you got for God they'd go oh no you'll have to go back to room 104 you go 104 104 says you've been to 232 well you can't come to room 104 yeah and we all know this and so for that go – I mean that's what modern bureaucracies look and feel like you know so for that go to Kafka so I was trying to develop last time was a criticism of the state and the economy of a new arising global order that now I guess has become popular enough to deserve the moniker new order a new order I'm always suspicious of new orders so now I'm going to drop back a level and look at some of the other factors that go into it and into the formation of human values other than although I still think these are crucially important other than the economic ones and for that purpose I just can't restrain myself from looking at a couple more of the critics of modernity you might call critics of modern life of the modern state the modern economy and of the conditions in which our modern culture is formed and one of those critics that I think's come under fire in Time magazine and elsewhere is Nietzsche you may have heard of him Nietzsche it's very popular now to see Nietzsche as sort of the new threat you know in the 60s the right-wing was worried that too many college professors read Marx they don't worry about that anymore people like Yann Elster run huge Institute's their analytic Marxist that's respectable now you're looked at sort of yeah it's a little funny if you're if your interest is in Nietzsche and I'll try to explain first what's supposed to be so scandalous about nature Nietzsche is supposed to hold the scandalous view that knowledge is a form of power now that's scandalous because knowledge is knowledge its objective you know like journalism and it would be scandalous to show that wherever we find knowledge we will find it structured and constructed around a system or systems of power won't find one without the other now one can think of this along the simplest pedagogical models by that I mean the classroom models I mean I want to know this from teaching the university I know how to pass along knowledge to get someone to believe me in the last analysis I give them an A which I could replace with a happy face they're used to that that's from kindergarten they're both just symbols right of achievement they're not getting paid for this stuff right you just give them a little eye they smile that same system starts in kindergarten happy face ie runs through their f no face blank same thing with working kindergarten that form I use looks fair I mean I'm grading objectively but the point is deeper that what the knowledge is based on is my spot of power as the teacher that's what it's based on now you and go oh no it's based on what's really true yeah but but how does that get meted and how does that get meted out in par staff who decides that well the blunt and ugly answer is we do the teachers too we decide now you're going to there clear counter examples – Nietzsche's argument in mathematics at its simplest levels I will grant you that if we're doing a mathematics course I could grade objectively but I will also grant you that nothing of great importance to human values hangs on truths that everyone can accept that 2+2 is 4 that is a are all acceptable and they're acceptable precisely because nothing of very great human importance the moment you go a little beyond that in any direction even in math class when you discuss for example the philosophy of mathematics then the disputes start and then power at some point has to insert itself and decide so an important part of Nietzsche's investigation is in the interconnection between forms of knowledge and power forms of in in for purposes of our course forms of ethical behavior and power are the subject of his most important book well maybe not as most important but certainly the most the one that's the most coherent on the genealogy of morals by Nietzsche and in this book and I'm going to talk about it just briefly Nietzsche talks about not what's right and wrong in the way we did in previous lectures good or bad actions but the word genealogy talks about what were the origins of the situation's within which we make the value judgments in other words from where did this distinction come good bad right wrong and so on now Nietzsche's argument is rather abrasive read sus it's certainly provocative and the genealogy of morals traces the moral form of discourse good bad right wrong back to originally and again this is these nineteenth-century Germans again back to the Greeks now here Nietzsche talks about the Greeks as having any the word he uses is very important and I'm going to this will move us finally back to our account of the present Nietzsche talks about the translation of virtue what was virtue for the Greeks nature in Meechum it was a philologist who could never get a normal job as a professor because he was a little nuts okay in anyway that wouldn't have stopped him now but it stopped him then for the Greeks virtue when I said the word I could see all of you go virtue yeah it wasn't like that for the Greeks I've already given you the Greek ideal of Odysseus where virtue included the ability to be a clever liar in other words knowing when and who to con was important that's not part of the Victorian idea of virtue but it's part of the Greek ideal of it and so virtue for their mentis excellence in being well-rounded it meant to be excellent at revenge so that unlock the Christian ideal of virtue if if someone strikes you you strike them back and the reason you do that is because if you don't it will offend them worse it will hurt their honor and yours much more virtuous to hit them back and then both your honors are intact if you a will only have humiliate them to turn your faces though they were unworthy scum now hit them back so Nietzsche discusses this use of virtue and the Greek evaluation he called noble now noble for Nietzsche is not itself a term of value but a kind of descriptive term of the way the Greeks evaluated and he himself is not doing ethics the way I was doing it the other day this is not it he's giving us it were a genealogy a history of the way in which we've come to use these words for Nietzsche the key movement in the way the words good bad right and wrong occur occur around the word virtue and occur with the Christian transformation of virtue from something active based on excellence into something filled with what Nietzsche calls resentment and I guess there's a simple way to make the argument and I'm trying to keep my remarks here at a level where they are debatable what he means is something like this for the Greeks you know someone who was strong enough to say I went ahead and sinned which meant they did what they wanted to and enjoyed it and for the Greeks that was good the Christian idea of virtue which includes the idea of guilt and sin meant that you want to do something real bad and you don't and they're frustrated and filled with resentment towards those sinners who go ahead and do what they want to do and you turn the name of your fault cowardice into a virtue virtue really you just didn't have the guts to go ahead of me what you wanted to do trying to make make it sound even slimy er than it is but this is Nietzsche's argument you never wear the strength to go ahead and pursue what you really wanted and so your name for that inability is your virtue you didn't do it well we know that doesn't work out we are frequently because we have a several new toria's cases the Jimmy Swaggart case shows the most virtuous sometimes fall but it's worse than that as Nietzsche says this Christian notion of virtue is a double trap because let's suppose someone has the strength to pursue excellence because the head it does what they want to do and find satisfaction then because the whole field within which right and wrong is understood in the Christian era is different than the whole field within which right and wrong is understood in the earlier period when you go ahead and do that then you pay another price guilt that's where you internally torment yourself for the very paradoxical and perverse reason that you did what you wanted to do you know Dan I'm so mad at if I want to do you don't do what you want to do and you feel as it were helpless but a little bit smug and then resentful towards others that do otherwise that's resentment or you go ahead and do it and then feel guilty and have resentment towards yourself so Nietzsche talks about this reversal of values as a reversal of values from the Greek values and the key word is virtue virtue is very differently understood in the Victorian era and this is what Nietzsche talks about in the genealogy of morals if one of the things the argument does whether you like it or not or whether you accept it or not and I've only outlined it in a kind of a snide quick why here today whether you like it or not the interesting part of Nietzsche's project is that what we could see and I haven't done that in here but what we could have presented as eternal problems of morality in Nietzsche's account we become very aware that these so-called eternal problems change radically depending on where in where you happen to be in history what gets called good is different if you happen to be in one society or one historical period and in another now that seems like the shocking claim that it's all relative right that's where Nietzsche's supposed to be so abominably bad for a real humanistic education that it's all relative well this is never this is not a part of the argument what Nietzsche is trying to show is that knowledge truth objectivity and good and bad have conditions for possibility and those conditions for possibility change that doesn't destroy what seems to be someone who lives in the Victorian periods right to call someone a sinner in fact it's a condition for the possibility of them doing it you see what I mean it's not that everything is relative it's that there are conditions within which evaluations take place that themselves require analysis in other words his account is not a moral theory but it is a theory about how we have come to have the moral theories we do have how we've come to have the ones that we do have Freud paid a tremendous compliment to Nietzsche Freud said that Nietzsche knew more about himself than any other human had ever known or was ever likely to know fairly smart guy yes he was very bright his main target was Christianity and I'm going to now we're going to return to a more contemporary a critique of Christianity and I'm in this lecture I'm going to present a little bit of Nietzsche's critique of Christianity and the reason I'm going to do it and how its connected with my earlier remarks is to this very day in spite of the so called secularization of the world values especially in the United States and our culture and again we're working for a theory of the present are still by and large Christian by and large Christian values those are the official public ones right the official public values again the gap between how they're practiced and what they are to all a matter of dispute but this growing out of the discourse of Hegel there are other critiques as I saying Nietzsche's this one he focuses on the values that surround Christianity so I'm going to talk about him a little bit more now and then in the next lecture I want to talk about a Christian who has a criticism of modern Christianity so you'll get both sides you'll get one guy who's sort of you'll you'll know before I'm through here thinks Christianity was a mistake from the standpoint of species it was a mistake he goes well not quite you know a two thousand year mistake it was more than that it was a little bit more catastrophic Nietzsche thinks that that among the other ill effects of Christianity is what one of them is very banal it's the habit of bad reading he explains how many of us are raised in churches where when we bother to read now this won't hold for many of our Jewish friends or people who believe other religions but in the Christian tradition we're taught to read the Old Testament where every stick of wood every stone every snake a Roberta every bat is a sign of Jesus and Nietzsche points out that this inculcates and us habits of bad reading it does you know if you think about you says well now you know in that book there and you didn't then that then the preacher reads some just unintelligible piece of the Old Testament you know the locusts have no kings a far bit written and that means Jesus is coming you go Nietzsche says this makes you not read well they being brought up this way tends to make you not read well it's worse than that however and that's that what the way Christianity presents itself is a doctrine of love and compassion certainly that has something to do with its appeal to our national character and that's good too a doctrine of love and compassion Nietzsche's concern in this book the genealogy of morals is to show that what's beneath that mask of love and compassion is really a doctrine of resentment and hatred and I think I can make that come alive for you with some pretty banal examples one would be a Jerry Falwell who discusses homosexuals he loves them how many people believe he really loves them see I don't how he hates them his way of hiding them is to love them that's the trick Nietzsche was after the trick about how resentment envy and hatred can be masked with these words love and compassion it's an important argument today because I think we've become a suspicious culture and each has been called one of the Masters of suspicion paul ricoeur the philosopher called him a master of suspicions recur as a Christian as well he just thinks that with reading these books is the mediation through which any modern kind of faith would have to pass you'd have to read them understand them before you'd know what you meant by having faith in any case nature sees this dynamic of resentment and envy as being as it were the unspoken or the the code beneath the code of Christianity and so for the first time in the the course I'm going to pull out a section of a book that I want to look at if I can find the correct quote here this is from the genealogy of morals in this edition it's on page 48 it's section 15 of the first essay Nietzsche's discussing a Christian love as it were and faith and hope Nietzsche in his rather cynical way says in faith in what in love of what in Hope of what these weak people some day or other they too intend to be strong if you ever heard an evangelist and got that feeling that while they were real meek some day they intended to be real strong that's the idea there's no doubt of that because they say their kingdom is coming they term it the kingdom of God because after all one should be so humble in all things to experience that kind of duplicity one needs to live a long time Dante I think committed a crude blunder when with a terror inspiring ingenuity he placed the Gateway of his hell the inscription I too was created by eternal love at any rate there would be more justification for placing above the Gateway to the Christian paradise and it's eternal blessed the inscription I too was created by eternal hate provided a truth could be written above the Gateway to a lie what constitutes the Bliss of this paradise well Nietzsche goes on to quote not Jerry Falwell but st. Thomas Aquinas great teacher site certainly knew more about Christianity than I do or most most of us Thomas Aquinas says that the Blessed in the kingdom of heaven will see the punishments of the Damned in order that their bliss be more delightful for them at that moment in Nietzsche's text something sort of creepy should come up your back you should go st. Thomas Aquinas said that in heaven our chief bliss would be that we could see all those mean people that got us while we were alive having all its stuff ripped off of them eternally forever and Nietzsche's text wants to bring alive for us the barbarism the hatred that must be buried in such a doctrine of love is its core it's a very frightening argument but it isn't limited and I don't want to limit it to a set of Christian values specifically but to certain duplicitous ways in which words of value are used in general the way that a bomb can be dropped lovingly surgically see when you cut someone in surgery you do it to heal them right that's what a surgical strike is that's what he's surgeon it cuts the cancer out leaves the patient alive so but that's not all a surgical strike is you see this field within which good and bad appeared so clearly to us or supposed to I think some of us may be getting a little confused but in which values are supposed to be so clearly appear to us may very well have these duplicitous built within them a surgical strike may not be like surgery with dr. Kildare it could turn out there could be some resentment and hatred beneath it there might be it's possible Nietzsche is not trying to argue demonstratively or to prove a syllogism but rather to raise suspicions to raise the kinds of suspicions that as I say I think many of us have when we look at the content of the values that have come up to us you know through our traditions that's what Nietzsche is powerfully and importantly good for not to deny again not to say all is relative but to try to remind us of something of the origins of what we call good and bad right and wrong and so on by the way these are these values have come out in other contexts I remembering them in an earlier war general westmoreland side we had to destroy the village in order to save it but it was not an irony he meant it I mean so did the early Christian communities that settled in this country mean it that for which his own good one had to Duncker repeatedly in water now we've come a long way since then haven't we because now we lock people away in prisons and in institutions torment them with drugs locked them up in the most dangerous environments have more people in prison in this country per capita than any country in the world except South Africa I don't know they may be the new South Africa may be ahead of us who knows but we haven't gotten as far ahead in this regard as we think and this argument has been updated by people like me Cal Foucault we still have inside the idea that we would send someone to prison in order to rehabilitate them now we're getting to be more honest about that we're getting a little more barbaric and for Nietzsche that would be better that would be a little more honest we're sending them to prison because we're scared of them and that we know if they go there really bad things will happen to them and it will ruin their lives and that will make us happy that's what we should say when we send one to prison pregnant it's good to be honest and there's Nietzsche said in the name of minimal honesty don't send them to prison and go all that was the best thing for them you know he was spanked by your father maybe once they just beat the hell out of you anyway that hurt me worse than it did you there you go I guess reading the text of Nietzsche makes a suspicious of people who do things for our own good it makes us suspicious of people who love us in a kind of abstract way especially so I didn't want you to think that I had sort of when my previous lecture become soft-hearted so that's why we followed up with a Nietzsche lectures we we don't want any conservatives saying well you're not tough minded enough so this is sort of a little bit more the tough-minded part just a sort of Christian doctrine of loving everyone Nietzsche says does not work because love is meaningless without discrimination in other words how in what way do I honor you to love you if I love everybody else to see that's there are many points like that in each of that I think are quite challenging and quite interesting it is absolutely for Nietzsche you plis it us to go I just love everyone well you haven't met everyone and some of them you're not going to like because their asses you're not I like them and if you did the people you really loved ought to be irritated because you'd say well I thought you loved you love everybody well big deal I'll see you later I mean yet you bump into me again you'll still love me you know it's like Will Rogers I never met a man I didn't like well he never met George Bush you know so Nietzsche is a wonderful and all I could do is because his argument is intricate and powerful I'm just giving you suggestive bits of it today but Nietzsche is one of the modern masters of suspicion has read the reading of his books dot I think warns us against some of our as it were not prejudices because it's not fair to call something a prejudice that's so deeply seeded you know that is so much a part of our civilization and culture it's not really a prejudice but it is an eye-opening experience to get as it were another look at it a look at what might be beneath it and so to get ready for my remarks on each of the day it was simply enough as I say to sweet around the teeth not not enough I mean I unfortunately I had to read this stuff before probably when I was too young let's switch around and hear oral roberts discuss how much he loved everybody out in TV landing at 10 big enemies were coming after all of us probably he didn't name any of them that's not very helpful i mean if you knew they were you could call the cops or something I guess those are peace officers they carry weapons like Patriot missiles peacekeepers but to hear oral and the various morning preachers and of course in the case of for like it's just outstanding because fault always loves his enemies and the duplicity in it is palpable and I thought I just think that someone would have to be incredibly naive not to feel it almost especially if you've seen me in debate with some leader of for example of homosexual groupies I love you it's know that somewhere in there is the desire to inter more importantly in the very texts that form the Christian tradition like Thomas Aquinas are these frightening moments that look marginal to the Maine tradition but I don't think anyone's going to raise their hand and tell me st. Thomas Aquinas is a marginal figure in the history of Christianity these blinding moments of clarity where we have these people say the chief pleasure will be to see the torments of the Damned I mean why will heaven be a lot of fun we'll be there a long time and it'll be like a Clive Barker movie all the people we didn't like will be being torn apart you know like in one of those Clive Barker films it's me and that will be a lot of fun it'll be an ongoing splatter movie mixed with heart music it'll be a real gig a trip it will be fun well any Nietzsche's discourse would teach us to be a little bit more honest about this I think and when we intend to punish or kill people it would be nice to say we intend to punish or kill them by nice I mean not moral we're in this moral universe where duplicity is built into being virtuous still you see how I said earlier for the Greeks telling lie as well was sort of openly acknowledged as something clever to do but that duplicity is still built into the concept of virtue in a way I mean we can't really tell the truth even about Wars as you know we can't really let it all hang out and say well you know we started off just to invade Kuwait get it back but now we're really pissed and we want to kill all those down Arabs everyone a man that damn Saddam in any of those other people that are yelling and burning our flag – well I've been out and around the country and that's the attitude out there it's not it's funny it's sort of the lower you go down the educational scale the more honest it gets it's kind of like that's sort of nice at the University we have a lot of our professors they believe the same thing who just won't say it that way they believe it they just won't say it instead they'll do a sort of general Hague kind of discussion of it the way Al Haig talks sort of in State Department ease full of lots of ing words and coinages that are not found in the English language that you know just cover over the real situation when what Al Haig really wants to say is I'm in charge and the dark little people will die that's the message and it's right and good that they should die because they will die so that everyone can be free in a new world order and right on let's go get them but drop bombs they die don't talk kill so like it's like a proposal for surrender a proposal for surrender as follows you surrender or we by me while you sit there but of course if you get up to leave we will buy me while you're walking away is that a good policy see that's almost Nietzschean isn't it surrender but don't move because if you don't move you won't have surrendered so we'll have to borrow me but if you move we won't be sure you've surrendered so we'll have to borrow me so surrender but we'll borrow me it's kind of a policy designed to do what Bond people they can go don't but it won't help because they'll either have to be still or moving or some condition in between again it'd be better openly to say now that we've got this thing going we're all good Christians we want to do the right thing and we're all believers in good democracy but for the moment let's forget it this is too much fun let's really hammer them and let's prove that our version of the Peloponnesian War the one that made the Greeks so confused about their values in our culture we had a war like that that confused us about our values Vietnam and it's kind of a background theme of the current war of a philosophy of the present to which I'm now connecting the discourse of Nietzsche loosely a target might be to kill the guilt and the fear that were produced by that other troubling moment in history nothing would do that better than a clean kill with a huge majority for it a quick clean kill what better basis on which to build a new world order then again an order of barbarism I mean you know then this massively quick and effective barbarism which would accomplish what should be openly stated as a public goal of the war namely to prove that the Peace Love hippies were wrong and Rambo was right and that is that in that earlier war if only we would have just kept bombing and hit them with everything we had those damned peaceniks and those newspaper guys and all those bleeding hearts wouldn't a lost or for us well if we can go in now and show that massive force continually applied will bring this country to its knees it'll be a way to demonstrate that that could have been done before that all those people that raised all that hell were even even more wrong than they've already admitted good God even more sold-out than they're already sold it's like the New World Order can't tolerate even a little just a little bit of opposition and that may be true of it because it is I I don't know if it's Nietzsche's view but it's mine that systems of power connected to systems of value tend to spread and become total in other words they tend to want to fill up the total field of discourse within which we discuss tomorrow this is well known about religions as we I mean helps to account for religious wars the principle of toleration is not built into people's who have that kind of insight into the truth that's why I wanted to begin I did begin these lectures by discussing fallibilism not as some deep philosophical principle but it's the following principle that it's okay to have beliefs but suspect your own beliefs that it's important to believe some things passionately but it's also important to have the wisdom to know that you could be dead wrong so using Nietzsche to bring up this critique of some of the values that have come out of the so-called Christian tradition I realize that I could be wrong that you could be wrong but all these arguments and from him and the one of the suggestions I've made during this hour are meant to do or to suggest a kind of suspicion of that tradition now each it does say what is the powerful one of the powerful motivations behind Christianity which is I have argued is deeply connected to the current world system one of its powerful motivations is it does speak to something that's very important and human beings may in fact quite generally share it and that's the need for love christianity is a sort of lyrical religion in that respect it speaks of love and it's hard not to know that it fudges the distinction between the earthly and the carnal kind it fudges that distinction I don't know how many of you have ever been to an event evangelical meeting out in the country but that's the night when all the men and women get dressed up in their best clothes and go and sing these rousing songs and sweat in their best perfume and seeing love lifted me and it's very difficult not to see Nietzsche's point that Christianity has always been a find for those who have repressed sexuality it's quite a find it always has been so all I can do is suggest you read more Nietzsche in a cynical time like this it's hardly necessary most of you are probably already that cynical anyway maybe this was a waste of time but I wanted it I wanted to add to the economic and political conditions what might be called cultural conditions of which religion remains an important one and so the discussion of Nietzsche fits there and also it fits because it's still a project for some and a quite serious one so now that I've presented Nietzsche's rather cynical view in the next one I'll discuss Kierkegaard's view but the problem with this is that Christianity is I've already argued in a modern society is already a very Lydia very idiosyncratic project very idiosyncratic I know that because I've I've been a faculty in residence and lived with students at a university and had them come in and complain my roommates a real sky pilot by which they mean he reads the Bible a lot near Titan and it that's an easier way to get rid of a roommate than coming in and saying he's a Nazi because the Nazi will just put up some swastikas in the room and use some words you don't like the other guy will be up prying and irritating you all right but the christianity i've been discussing here is not christianity in the intimate sense of faith that I'll discuss with when i do briefly discuss Kierkegaard another critic of modern times but that christianity that has become a public religion about which I guess the briefest Nietzschean critique would be that it's open as a public religion it is important to politics harry truman i think is is quoted as saying that in our system to run for political office you have to pour God in Jesus over everything like ketchup over your food it's just got to be covered up in it now Carter was a different story someone said I had to say something about Jimmy Carter in any in any course on ethics you've got to talk about Jimmy Carter and all I can say about Jimmy is he's a good Christian but he did admit that he lusted in his heart after other women if he had had courage enough he would have been Ted Kennedy and if Ted Kennedy had had the courage of Nietzsche he would have said yeah I did it and I liked it you would have to if you'd have been there which is probably true don't you see I'm not really trying to be cynical here it's probably right Nietzsche isn't trying to be just cynical to irritate you folks me that's probably right yes you know if you rich good-looking and lots of people yeah sure why not so there's like a distinction there there's a kennedy-carter and way down at the end of the spectrum is Richard Nixon is it almost question time I really don't know what other nasty things to say about folks

27 thoughts on “Rick Roderick on Nietzsche on Knowledge and Belief [full length]”

  1. I would love to read whatever evidence he had about reducing the state and economic depression, as I believe now we need a radically free market instead of one regulated by government, I'd like to know what revelations he had, Chomsky also recognizes that we live in a not actual capitalist system, but I've not heard him talk wether he thinks that is good or bad, as an anarcho-syndicalist he probably thinks it's good, I could be wrong but I really want that evidence.

  2. The great depression was not caused by "unrestricted capitalism" – rather government intervention (re: federal reserve) by way of monetary policy, in essence, the federal reserve kept raising rates (re: shrinking the money supply) thereby decreasing available capital thereby making the availability of loans scarce in the economy.

  3. Anyone else notice the similarities of the lectures between this and Jordan Peterson's? They definitely have their differences but the topics are similar

  4. i like rick but he misunderstands marxism. in a communist society, assuming the bourgeois line is being struggled against, the workers would control the state. how would the state exploit them if they controlled it? the state is simply an apparatus of class power. under communism it would be used to uphold proletarian values.

  5. He is instantiating the very thing he is talking about. Hence the political remarks. Ad-homonym remarks are necessary for who he is talking about and for himself. To present this material one needs to embody it as rick indeed does.

  6. A pompous ass. He keeps injecting his political views into the discussion.  The reason they are called 'peace officers' is because they are charged to maintain the peace.  He seems to think the term is an oxymoron. I'm sure he objects to 'peace officers' maintaining the peace where he lives.  And the idea that Christians will delight in the suffering of the so-called sentence because of a sentence from Thomas Aquinas? Is he seriously suggesting that this is a tenet of the Christian faith?  Again, a pompous ass.

  7. Enjoying the lectures immensely, yet the philosophers at the BondInstitute net objects to the point at 25:00: the idea that hate and love are opposites. These are incommensurable. Love is measured against [non]Love, Hate against [non]Hate, and so on… as per the philosophy of measurement outlined in our Harmonic Matrix Theory.

  8. hello everybody, i am edenjevy seminarian i am major in philosophy i am having my theses writing on soren kierkegaard and friedrich nietsche on authenticity; a comparative study, i will ask suggestion how to pursue this one if you have any comment please message me my yahoo [email protected]

  9. The current world system is the antithesis of Christianity just as many churches are. The Romish church most obviously but tradition, unfortunately, has overscored the true message and faith.

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