Introduction and Donation Request

[0:00] Good morning, everybody. It is the 11th of February, 2024, and we are live. for a great community. slash donate to help out the show. I would really, really appreciate that. slash donate. And, of course, if you join the community, you just get all kinds of goodies.
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[0:36] Let us get to your questions and comments. Tips, of course, more than gratefully accepted.
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Good morning, everybody. Good morning, Steph. My wife and I recently went out to a fairly fancy restaurant and noticed several men wearing their caps inside.
They all seemed to have full, healthy heads of hair.
Later, I realized more and more men prefer to wear hats, especially inside.
I always understood this as improper.
Why prefer a hat over displaying a hairdo?
So you're asking me why men with hair do what they do. I'm afraid that is not just a bridge, but a part too far.

[1:33] When somebody gave me a comb recently, I said, I'll never part with this.
Oh, there's your dad joke for the morning. So why do men wear hats?
Well, I assume that the question of grooming is always an interesting one.
I mean, to me. So I'll riff on grooming, personal grooming, not the other kind.
So I'll riff on grooming, and you can tell me if this sort of makes any sense.
But grooming to me is always fascinating because it's really one of the perfect examples of the Aristotelian mean that can be imagined.
People who don't groom at all, who go out looking like slobs and, you know, half beards and bad hair and like people who don't groom at all just always strike me as depressed.
I mean, it's okay to put a little jazz, a little flash, little jazz hands in your appearance and to look kind of neat and cool. cool.
Like this morning before the show, I shaved and applied my facial cream, gave myself a little face massage, wake up the old visage.
And yeah, I want to look good for you guys.
No, I mean, I obviously don't want to look like crap to you guys.
I want to look fairly decent because you may be watching this for two hours.
Why not have a little bit of giant thumb eye candy in your 360?

[2:51] Uh a lot but then there's an excess of grooming you know the guys with those laser haircuts with the little zigzags and uh the clothes are just so and the pose is just so and that seems to me kind of hysterical and a distraction from an absence of personality you know it's polishing the exterior is good ish but too much polish obscures the interior which is sort of where the only place you can actually you can't have a relationship with someone's flesh you can only to have a relationship with their personhood, their soul, their mind, their personality.
So people who draw too much focus to the exterior are hiding up a vacuum of interior.
So I would assume, of course, the guys with hair, you have your bad hair day, and it's just a lot easier to put on a hat or a cap than it is to futz with your hair.

[3:43] And so it's been a while, of course, since I've had to futz with my hair.
I mean, I do love the barbers who say, how do you want it? I'm like, I appreciate you giving me the illusion of free will with regards to hairstyles, but I would assume that the guys just don't want to do their hair.
And either it's because they're depressed or they're not interested in relationships or they're too frightened to have relationships or they're in a relationship with a woman who's also depressed.
Depressed because women who aren't depressed in my experience tend to uh not inflict but they tend to encourage social standards on their wayward boyfriends and husbands purely theoretical of course never happened to me but if my wife says you need to dress nicer you need to dress more nicely for you know whatever it is we're going or whatever it is we're doing if she's like we went to a classical concert the other day and she's like yeah you need to dress up a little and i'm like okay yeah i'm not i mean i'm not asking her to lay the clothes out on the bed for me if that happens that's okay but i'm not asking her to do it so i don't you know she knows these kinds of things way better than i do and if there's a social standard to be adhered to that's reasonable then you know you look to women so uh the men who are in caps in restaurants in nice restaurants, either they're kind of depressed.

[5:06] Or not looking for a relationship or they're in a relationship with a woman who's too depressed to want to look good right so you can be too depressed to want to look good and you can also be too vain about your appearance to connect with anyone right so all right.

Debt as a Hindrance to Social Change

[5:22] Check out credit card debt. 100, what, 1.13 trillion?
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, I mean, this is, debt is a drug that prevents social change, right?
Debt is a drug that prevents social change. If people had been asked to pay all of the research and distribution and production costs and liability potential for the mRNA vaccines, they would not have been put out there, right?
I mean, because the people look for the cheapest and most effective solution, which I think, according to some reports, would have been other things.
But if you'd gone to someone and said, hey, we're probably going to need $40,000 for you so that we can give you these injections because, you know, we have to hedge against liability should something go wrong.
And, you know, it's a lot of expense to like, but because it's all borrowed and taxes aren't increased and it's all debt. Debt is a drug that prevents social change.
People, why were they relatively okay with lockdowns? Because they got money, which was borrowed. They got bribed.
So debt is a very, very, very bad for getting people outraged about injustices.
I just give them money and drug them with nonsense. All right.
Good morning, Parson Molyneux.

[6:51] Parsonom, Parsonius? Parsimonius Molyneux. Non-stupid question.
How can we have survived so long without the great work you put out?
Oh, and happy birthday, James. Well, that's very, very kind.
You have survived. Of course, we all have survived.
But philosophy turns us from survival to thrival.
So that's better. All right.

[7:14] Oh yeah, the Missouri mother charged for accidentally putting her baby in the oven?
Yeah, that's really, uh, really pretty tragic.
Really, really pretty tragic.
Speaking of computers 40 years ago, today was the 1984 ad. Bleh.
It's really, I mean, that ad generated a mystique around Apple that was really cool and obviously has been very productive for them, but yeah, really, really sad. All right.

[7:54] Let me get to your comments here. My son, 1.5 years old, cries and cries when I don't give him what he wants.
I admit this is probably because I've given him what he wants when he cries.
Do you have any tips to be compassionate and respectful to a child who's screaming at you to give them something?
What can I do or say to show that I care, but I have to not give him what he wants?
Right. It's a great question, and I appreciate that question, of course. It's a very important question.
It sounds like you're dealing with a tantrum. You're dealing with a tantrum. All right.

[8:34] A couple of questions that I would run through in this kind of scenario, see if they fit or make sense.
First of all, has he ever seen anyone in his immediate circle use aggression to get what they want?
Could be another kid, could be a relative could be a parent could be whatever right has he ever seen someone in his environment i mean not just once maybe uh throw a tantrum or escalate or use aggression to get what they want could be in a movie could be in a song could be in a story could be have they had exposure to aggression working right that's the first thing have you and you say you have you have You have rewarded aggression, right?
Because you say cries and cries, and then you say screaming, right?
So if you have rewarded your child for crying, it's your fault that he's crying, right?
I mean, in general, right, if it's this pattern.
So the issue is not with him. The issue is with you. You have trained him to cry.
Because when he cries, you give him what he wants. So you've trained him to cry.
Or he's seen it work in some other manner. What can I do or say to show I care, but I have to not give him what he wants? All right.
Fundamental question of parenting.

[10:00] If your children, and this is going to sound harsh, and I apologize if it doesn't fit. If it doesn't fit, you must acquit.
But the fundamental question around parenting is, do your kids want stuff more than they want you?
Do your kids want stuff? Thank you for the tip. I appreciate that.
Do your kids want stuff more than they want you? If your kids want stuff more than they want you, you have a problem. you have problem and it's not an easy problem to solve so the big test is.

Choosing between Candy and Quality Time with your Child

[10:37] I mean the mental test I'm not saying you would do this in reality but the big test goes something like this, well you can have a bowl of candy or you can come with me for a walk that's the mental test right, you can have a bowl of candy or you can have a new toy toy or you can come with me for a walk where we can chat.
We're going to go to the park, let's say more than a walk. You can walk with me to go to the playground, but you can have a ball of candy, you can have a new toy, or you can go with me to the playground for hours.
Now, if your kid chooses candy over going to the park with you, you have a problem, which is that your your child is preferring stuff over you.
If the child would rather have a toy, you know, when they're young, rather than go to the park with you, you have a problem.

[11:37] Your child should want you more than stuff, right?
Because if they prefer you to stuff, they won't cry or scream at you to get stuff, right?
Because if your child wants something and you say, let's go to the park, or let's go have fun at the park, and then that makes your child feel better, and you go to the park, you've solved the problem. And it doesn't have to be going to the park.
It could be, would you rather have half a bar of chocolate, or would you rather spend the afternoon playing Monopoly or charades or whatever it is that your kid likes?
Does your kid like you or does your kid like stuff?
Now, I like philosophy more than I like stuff because I've given up a lot of stuff to do philosophy, right?
So I like philosophy more than I like stuff.
I mean, I took a 75% pay cut from my software career just to get this gig going back in the day. and could be said I took a wee bit of a financial hit after being deplatformed.
So I prefer the truth over stuff. Now, I get you need to have some stuff in order to live.
I prefer my wife to stuff. I prefer time with my child to stuff, right?

[12:58] So does your child love you or does your child use you as a way to get stuff?
Now, at the moment, it sounds like your child is using you to get stuff, which means your child is willing to make you unhappy in order to get stuff, which means your child is bonded more to stuff than to you.
And I know that sounds harsh and again, if it doesn't fit, so the way to solve this in the long run, I mean, you can do the short-term thing of the, well, I'm just not, I'm just not going to give him his stuff. Right.
But then he's going to associate you with the withholding of stuff that he cares about in a way more.

Prioritizing Relationships over Material Possessions

[13:41] That's going to make your relationship tougher, right? It's going to make your relationship negative. So forget the stuff. Forget the stuff.
Your child should experience deep delight when you come in the room.
Your child should be very happy that you come in the room. The child should be thrilled that you're there.
And the child should experience you as a massive net positive to his existence. And of course he does.
I get all of that, but never assume there's a cap on that.
Because if your child loves you or is super happy when you're around, then the stuff becomes less important.
Because it is humiliating as a parent when a child is manipulating or bullying or aggressing against you to get stuff.
It's humiliating because in that moment the child cares more about the stuff than you now again he's 18 months old so i get all of that but you don't want this snowball to be escalating and rolling down the old mountainside over the next 20 years right you have to reorient you have to reorient, your child from stuff to you.

[15:03] I mean outside of the bare minimum relationships are way more important and valuable, than stuff again you got to have food and show i get all of that but beyond the bare minimum relationships are way more important than stuff if i let stuff get between me and philosophy, i might just be like everyone else and we already have enough there's not a There's no shortage in the world of people who prefer stuff to truth.
Fuck stuff, love truth. That was my original tagline, free domain radio. Fuck stuff, love truth.
Or as the world has been, love truth, fuck stuff. But, you know, you want to choose the people over the stuff. Right.

[16:02] Your child should choose you over stuff, which means you have to up your game of delivering pleasure to your child until your child prefers you to stuff, right?
You have to outbid stuff with fun and enjoyment and depth and warmth and affection, right?
You just have to deliver more dopamine to your baby's brain than stuff does, right?
And kids love stuff, so it's a challenge.
You're in competition with stuff right now. It sounds like the stuff is winning.
And you want to out-compete the stuff. I mean, that's what pair bonding is, right?
Pair bonding is I'm out-competing everyone else in the delivery of happiness to you and you're pair bonded on the happiness, right?

[16:47] Some exasperating, you mean exacerbating, some exacerbating factors so that we just had our second baby and I also suspect his brain is quickly maturing and he's in need of more and more stimulation, which I'm struggling to come up with ideas for ways to provide this for him, right?
Dave says been listening to your novel the present for a second time that book is very emotional and the images are vivid i'm always amazed when i listen back to my writing my fiction writing how essential deep powerful every sentence is every sentence has a purpose every sentence has, moves it advances the plot and reveals character and life and it's just wow and also i would say in many ways my novel the future is even more emotional and passionate but morning jared, i recently purchased a few hats because i don't want to fix my hair when i'm going to the supermarket or the gym so it's time with me okay and are you in a committed relationship at the moment.

[17:58] All right. Thank you again, Vince. Vince has led the way. He's the icebreaker with the tips.
And, of course, to the person who asked the question about the kid, Vince says, my first son is 16 months old, so I'm thinking about this kind of thing very often.
I don't want to make mistakes that can be avoided. Yes, yes, yes, yes. Yes. You know, I mean, so you understand, we're at war with the capitalists.
I know, I'm a capitalist, but you understand. We're at war with the capitalists.
So would capitalists prefer the people who want to sell you stuff, particularly all the useless shit that clutters up our brain, hearts, minds, wallets, and bank accounts, and debt registries, and credit scores, and public ledgers, all of the useless crap in the world.
All the makers of useless crap do they want you to prefer people or stuff right all the people who make stuff want you to prefer stuff to people, right, I mean.

[19:16] It's a question of the engagement ring. I thought that the engagement ring was a tradition that went back centuries to the days of King Arthur and beyond at the Dark Ages.
Not that there's a lot of diamonds in Northern Europe, but I thought that the engagement ring, two-month salary or whatever, was a tradition that went back. back hundreds of years, at least maybe more.
I was really quite shocked to find out that a diamond manufacturer, I think it was De Beers, De Beers, just had an excess of diamonds, didn't have enough demand for them.
So they just ran this whole marketing campaign about buying women with shiny rocks.
It's wild. Just ran a marketing campaign after the Second World War.
We've got an excess of diamonds. How are we going to create a massive demand for diamonds?
Well, we'll just, we'll tell women that diamonds equals love.

[20:23] And people take all of this precious money that they could use to raise children, and they throw it into the hell mines of diamond extractors.
It's wild.
I mean, I remember seeing some sitcom, I think it was with Michael Rappaport for some reason, and a pretty loony lefty actor but, and he was he bought a a diamond for this girl I just remember this is one of these things I was just flipping channels but I remember this quite vividly he bought a, diamond for this girl he wanted to marry and she's like it's yellow and he's like no no no it's champagne champagne like.

[21:06] Rocks equals love.
It's the most bizarre equation in the world. What is it that women, flash me, right?
I got the ring, flash me, flash me, right? How big is the ring?
And it's a status thing and it's a, does he love you and how successful is he?
And to me, the ring, and I have no problem with rings.
I think they're very pretty and so on. So I'm not like bitching against jewelry.
I'm just talking about men who should be using their money to start a family, right?
Down payment on a house, at least get a car so you can get a better job.
Down payment on the family.
What are they convinced to do? To flush their money into a shiny rock.
It's absolutely mental.
Now, a woman who loves you doesn't need a big diamond. I mean, by definition, right?
That's one of the most classic examples of choosing stuff over people.
If you really cared about me, you'd get me a big diamond. I am for sale.

The False Idol of Stuff

[22:14] Love is stuff. Of course, the people who make useless, tits-on-a-bull detritus, white elephant kitsch garbage, they want you to prefer stuff to people so you'll buy stuff.
Sure, I get that. that philosophy says, fuck stuff, love truth, right?
Philosophy says, I mean, you can see by my big elaborate set, right?
My whole, uh, whole studio here.
Philosophy says, love people. Yeah, stuff is okay, whatever, but don't, don't, it's a false idol, right?
It's a golden calf. It's a false idol, the false idol of stuff.

[22:56] Stuff doesn't just mean, external physical material objects. Stuff can also mean like a particular fetish, you know, boobs, ass, great hair, long legs, like whatever it is that distracts you from the person themselves, right?
Fetish is also a false idol.
I mean, now you have to buy your, I mean, for a lot of women, right? You have to buy your woman's love, with $5,000 of useless spend.
It's wild. It was wild.

[23:40] I personally would never marry a woman who demanded a ring.
No, I wouldn't do it. It means she's surrounded by shallow people.
It means she's status-oriented.
And it means that she is going to chew through your precious resources like a Pac-Man on endless glowing dots that are actually your balls.
I mean, to me, malls are fantastical vanity temples to the false gods of stuff.
Shoes, impractical shoes, gowns, jewelry, ear piercing, nose piercing, body decoration of every kind.
Purses, purses, purses, purses.
Just absolutely useless shit.

[24:31] I love Erasmus' quote about books. I've been there, man.
If I get my hands on a scrap of money, I buy books and books and books.
If there's anything left over, sure, I'll think about food and shelter. But first, books.
What would your life be like financially Eventually.
If you didn't care that much about stuff. Maybe you guys don't. Maybe you guys don't.
What would your life be like? Now, again, I'm not saying live in a cave.
I'm not saying, well, you can't have a nice car, because, you know, nice cars can be safer and have safety features and whatever it is, right?
But I'm just saying, like, how would your life be if you and your family preferred each other's company to stuff?
If you preferred having conversation with each other rather than going to a movie, if you preferred going on a hike and chatting as opposed to going on an expensive vacation, what would your life be like if you had the kind of people that you would always walk away from stuff to spend time with?
You would always walk away from the bowl of chocolate to spend time with them.

[25:47] Isn't that cool? cool.
Philosophy is really good at helping you not spend money.
You see what I mean? Philosophy is fantastic at helping you not spend money.
Philosophy is fundamental money management.
I use you. And listen, I'm not saying don't be frivolous to some degree.
Like, I mean, I got a little, little watch here, which I am.
I'm curious how much my exercise is. I want to track my heart rate.
I like counting my steps. It's just a little game. Like I did four shows shows yesterday.
I did a show in the morning of rebutting consequentialism. I did a show with my daughter answering questions and then I did two call-in shows.
The first, third and fourth show, I walked and I got like 25,000 steps in yesterday, which was great.
I mean, I think that's kind of cool. So, you know, this is a little, do I need it? No. Is it helpful?
Is it useful? Does it make me probably a little bit more fit?
Yeah, I think so. So does it help me push myself a little? Yeah, I think so.
Can I track how my heart rate improves as I do more cardio? Yeah.
I mean, but do I need it? No.
No. I mean, I could theoretically, of course, do the show without the amp and the nice microphone and a decent camera, although this camera is just a little Sony handheld, actually.
It's just a little vlogging camera, which is actually better than other cameras that I've used. It costs more.

[27:11] My phone is five years old I bought my car second hand.

[27:24] Philosophy is pretty good at helping you save money because you prefer people to stuff.
My big outing with my wife yesterday was going for a long walk and chatting about our lives. It's great.
So, you want to start training your kid to prefer people to stuff.
And again, I want to remind everyone, it's not a false dichotomy.
It's not like you then, you know, I don't care about any stuff. I don't need any stuff.
I just need to stare at people and talk with them. It's a mix.
But people go way too far into the stuff side and they're never happy and they're never satisfied, stuff it follows the law of diminishing returns right you get a new phone you're thrilled for a day or two or five and then you just go back to normal right so stuff is, the hedonic treadmill right stuff is diminishing returns relationships are escalating returns right Right?
You don't invest in things that depreciate. You invest in things that appreciate. Right? That go up.

[28:28] And if you invest your happiness in stuff, that stock is going down. Right?
I mean, as I used to say to my daughter when she'd really want something, right?
Oh, remember you wanted that one thing? You wanted that decorative penny that had a stamp on it?
You were just desperate for that? We got it for her. It was like, I don't know, two bucks or whatever.
Have around five bucks so we got of that and i said hey where is that now that thing that you just so desperately wanted where's that thing now uh i don't know right and that's not to you know you want things but when you first got that you were very happy and now you don't even know where it is right now you don't even know where it is it's pretty good i'll spend money on the show Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Absolutely. I mean, I think I owe the future some decent audio quality and so on, right?

[29:31] But when you start to get into the pleasures of relationships rather than the diminishing happiness of stuff, it's really no competition.
It's really no competition. All right. Somebody says, reminds me when I read your novel, The Future, I did cry, wondering if we can get to a point where we do not hurt children. Yeah.
Enlightening stuff, says the dad. Thanks, Steph. I appreciate that.
Thank you for the tip. Jared says, says.

[30:02] I've been listening to your novel just poor. The characters, the writing, the attention to detail.
Glad I listened to the audio book. You doing the voices makes it all the better.
Not enough space here for how great it is. That is a great book.
And it is part of my early terror that I was going to pass through this world like a spear through the air, leaving nothing but puffs in my wake.
Or that I was going to be like a spear dropped from a great height going into a still pond, bloop, barely a ripple.
That all the thoughts I have in my mind, which are enormous, for me earth-shaking, deep, powerful, wonderful, all the vividness of association, all the elaborate nature of the analogies, all of the detail, all of the clarity, all of the explanations, that they were were going to be like a whirlwind in my head that went to dust when I died, that everything that I was capable of was going to be silenced by the hostility of an exploitive world, and I was going to spiral through this life.

[31:10] And vanish to nothing, and taking everything that I'm capable of with me.
It was a terrifying thought, and my novel, Just Poor, is exploring that possibility.
And how, if the world ignores the virtues that you have, how easy it is for the devil to tempt you to turn rancid and destroy the world that is.
If you won't love me for my virtues, maybe I can make you fear me for my vengeance.
Because the world ignores virtues all the time, and scorns and mocks and belittles all the virtuous.
And the great temptation is to take your vengeance against the world, to be goaded into vengeance against the world, and to say, that which scorns virtue, it is virtuous to destroy.

[32:11] I had that wrestled with that in my novel revolutions. You can get that at free domain,
I know of a revolutions was my first real novel and I struggled with that.
If the world scorns your virtue, is it not a virtue to destroy the world?
I mean, I obviously came down on the side of love rather than vengeance, but I'm not going to say it was an easy battle at all.
And just poor, was my exploration of that.
Because Mary O'Donnell has intense, immense, great, deep and powerful gifts, and she is punished for telling the truth, and she falls to the dark side.
And she says, if the world punishes me for virtue, I will punish the world for all its vices.
I've heard a man say his fiancée deserves a $15,000 diamond ring. Sure.

Listener shares excitement about meeting a wonderful woman.

[33:28] Good morning, everybody, says a listener. Fantastic news. I have met a wonderful woman.
All things are looking great. She wants kids in the next five years, wants to be a stay-at-home mom.
She already thinks of her future children's well-being and has been rigorous in vetting.
My character, and appreciates my engagement back with her vetting her character.
We are on the same level. We've had great discussions on my childhoods.
I feel like I'm rambling, but I've been quite high in the sky lately over her.
Well, that is a course for great celebration. Congratulations. How wonderful.
I'm not going to put any single caution in your mind. Charge forward with great great enthusiasm.

[34:09] Yeah, it's a funny thing, you know. I had to, you may remember, there was a caller in here a couple of, maybe a week or two ago, and he was talking about, hit me with a why if you remember this or maybe you heard about it later.
He was talking about his sister who was an exotic dancer.
Let me know if you remember that at all. I'd be with a Y if you remember that. Yeah, you do, right?

[34:45] So I did the calling with him and I did a role play with his sister.
And his sister was, you know, the patriarchy this, the men control that.
And what happened to his sister, she was trained as a dancer.
I'll put the calling show out for donors at some point.
But she was trained as a dancer and she fell into leftism and racism.
You know, you'll hear about some of this journey and the really shocking and surprising aspects of this journey with The Call-In Show.
But what happened was she was just, I don't know, a go-go dancer or an exotic dancer at a nightclub.
And there was a politician who was there in the nightclub and he was spending a lot of money and he demanded that the exotic dancers come over and be with him. And she ended up getting groped.
So she's railing against the patriarchy and exploitation and women this and that and the other.
And, but then she went back to do more exotic dancing with the manager of the club, who it seems to me kind of peddled her flesh for money to this politician.
So, so she was really, you know, she would really, she was really critical of her brother for his sexism and, and, and any criticism of women is, is hatred of women.
And, and yet she went back to shake her butt for money to a guy who half peddled her flesh, in my opinion, for money. Yeah, it's really rough. It's really tough.

[36:14] All right.

[36:21] 25,000 steps is crazy. Yes, it is fine.
A sarcastic comment. Let me show my love in a cold dead rock.
Or flowers which soon wither and die or chocolate so you get fat and won't be attractive and lingerie, well, who is that for?
Saw that trope ten years ago, summing up Valentine's Day.
Metal in noses, ah, right, right. Unless you're actually roping a steer, I'm not sure what the point of it is.

[36:55] I had that happen. She kept chewing through my resources. Yeah, for sure. Spent $200 on sunglasses last weekend.
Well, I'm of the age now. I need prescription sunglasses. They weren't $200, but, you know, protect your eyes. It seems like a good thing to do.
Four shows. Holy cow. Yes, it was a bit much. The wedding ring for my wife only cost $300.
She didn't care about the price tag. Right. Right.
The wedding ring is not for your wife fundamentally it's for her to have her friends go ooh and ah and for her to feel like a princess and it's it's vainglorious it's shallow and it is a predatory on the esteem of others all right i ask what point going on an expensive vacation with your significant other to not talk with each other just like at home well that's not good right.

[37:47] Somebody says i think that's the thing people have no depth so people rather have stuff than have people since they can not or don't know how to connect right i know you've said this before but how long after meeting your wife did you ask her to marry you uh four or five months i think it was and i knew even before that i just you know had to sort of set up the went to the most expensive restaurant around and a great meal and knelt down and got a free dessert so yeah it was uh i knew i knew probably within 10 weeks of meeting her that i'm like yeah i just felt this great ease in my my heart.
Like just, yeah, this is, I can't, there's no upgrade. And there never has been, I guess never been an upgrade.
She can't do better. She can't do better. Like we're just perfect for each other and it's beautiful every day. All right. Um, I've never had as much fun with a thing as a person.

Reflecting on the joy of spending time with loved ones without spending money.

[38:39] Grabbing foods with friends, I operate on, if money is preventing you from coming out and spending your time with us and having a meal, I'll cover you.
Yeah, yeah. Or, you know, just go someplace cheap or pick up a pizza and go to their house, right?
And so a lot, I mean, a lot of the fun that I've had in my life has been free or virtually free.
You know, I probably spent 40 bucks on Dungeons and Dragons stuff and got thousands of hours of Dungeons & Dragons fun.
The most fun that my daughter and I have together is when we don't spend money.
I mean, occasionally we have spent money and have fun. I go to some theme park or something.
But the most fun that we've had has been storytelling, has been joking together, has been going for walks and chatting. It has been roughhousing.
It has been just a variety of things that go into a park, which is kind of free.
It's just not money is not important right Vince says, your work has been so important to me I am revisiting your shows on reasoning with toddlers currently I can see in my son's eyes that his ability to reason is growing exponentially I know he'll be talking very soon and he's going to have lots of questions I often hear parents complain about this stage, all of the why questions etc I can't wait I want to talk with him yeah yeah.

[39:56] Remember Tamagotchi digital pets how after a little while while the parents are the ones looking after it, after the kids lose interest.
It's really sad. I mean, my daughter's interest in Dragon Veil, Dragon, some digital game, was fading and I was still collecting coins for her, like you go and touch the nests and you collect all these coins, which you can do this, that, and the other, right?

[40:19] The world not only ignores virtue, it exploits it. It takes skill to be a good and thrive.
So many people cheat either by being dishonest, getting the government to fund their life, or funding their life with debt, yeah.
What would you be doing now if you decided to go to the dark side?
Perhaps politics? Yeah, I would have become famous in the art world, and then I would have gone into politics.
Almost certainly. Almost certainly.
But of course, becoming famous in the art world literally these days is, in my opinion, just selling yourself.

[40:58] It is difficult for some women to accept that many men will pay them more to degrade themselves than they will for themselves to be virtuous.
Hence all the soft porn on TikTok, et cetera.
Steph, did you ever have anxiety slash fear when switching jobs?
I think my fear is that the new job I land is economically unstable.
Yeah. I mean, of course, I don't know, anxiety, fear, but let's say I was always attentive to what was going on when I was switching jobs.
I definitely had had some nervousness giving up my entire business career to pursue philosophy back in the time where there was not no particular way to monetize it um there was some some nervousness around that for sure but i mean the basic equation was does the world need a moral philosopher or does the world need another software executive it's pretty easy i know a woman whose husband bought her a 250 $150,000 ring and she lost it at her job. She works at a bar part-time for fun.

Anecdote about a woman who works at a bar and receives expensive gifts.

[41:55] He surprised her with another one and a replica so she could keep the real one at home.
Yeah. Works at a bar part-time for fun. That's not true.

[42:11] That's not even remotely true.
Makeup is just for fun. Outfits are just for me. That's all just nonsense.
Instance why does she work at a bar why does this woman work at a bar does anybody want to take a swing at that why does she work at a bar.

[42:33] I think we all know why she work yet the barry.

The woman at the bar seeking male attention

[42:46] Uh yeah to get male attention no i wouldn't say she's at the bar to be a whore i don't know that i mean but she's at the bar to get uh male attention she doesn't need the tips she doesn't need the money if her husband's throwing a half a million dollars worth of rings around then she doesn't need the money so she's there uh for male attention i mean i assume that he's giving her money because she's good looking and uh yeah women are hardwired to get dopamine from from the male gaze.
Yeah, for sure. For sure.
She's a 304.
Well, and does she have kids? Or is she milking her milkers, which are designed for breastfeeding, for money, honey, cleavage, right?
All right. My brother is married with kids and is in debt and constantly in a state of financial stress.
I've loaned him money a few times and he paid it back finally and given him advice for years, but to no avail.
My wife and I have agreed to loan him money because he didn't have the cash to buy food for his kids one month.
We're struggling with cutting him off versus harming his kids.
Do you have any insight on how to get to a better place with him?
It's a fine question. Hit me with a why if you've ever wrestled with a spendthrift.
And it's funny, spendthrift, thrift means to hoard, to conserve.
So spendthrift sounds like you're a hoarder, but a spendthrift is somebody who just spends money like crazy and doesn't seem to be troubled by debt.

[44:13] Oh they have a son and she says the only thing she regrets in her life is the way they raised him because he hates them yeah that's the woman who works in the bar yeah, yeah she's an attractive woman she works in the bar to get male attention and all of that right and who knows if she even lost the ring at the bar could have lost it.

[44:39] Why is she taking off the ring maybe so she doesn't scratch a stranger's we can all finish that alright so did you have any luck, did you have any luck, healing the spendthrift did you have any luck dealing with the spendthrift, Did that ever work out for the better?
Just out of curiosity.
Just out of curiosity.
Yeah, I've known spendthrifts in my life. They've driven me crazy. They drive me crazy.
They drive me crazy. Like just, it's not that hard to not spend your money, right?
It's not that hard to not spend. Is it? I mean, if you have good relationships, I guess, it's not that hard to not spend your money.
30 seconds delay. Okay. Yeah, yeah.

The Psychology of Spendthrifts and Status Seekers

[46:00] So, spendthrifts are addicts, and usually they're addicts to two things.
They're addicts to the dopamine of buying something, which is real.
I recently bought a mini computer to walk around and do call-in shows.
I don't want to sit. I'll sit for these shows because there's a camera, but where I don't absolutely need the camera, which is the call-in shows, or I just want to do walkabouts. and I bought a little computer.
I can use a belt, strap it to my side, put my headset on, and I don't have to hold things and bring them up to him. It's just, it's nicer to do that kind of stuff.
And I was kind of thrilled to get this little mini computer.
It's kind of cool. It was like $399.
I got it on sale. So, you know, but it's worth it for me to just have.
Now I have another computer that I was using, but it was too big to strap to my side.
And also the battery life would sometimes give out out after two hours without warning.
So then I'd have a big problem trying to resurrect the files and it was just a mess. So yeah, I got this little computer and it's really nice.
So yeah, so, so the spendthrifts, uh, they like the dopamine of buying things.
I guess there's three things.
They like the dopamine of buying things. They like the status of having things relative to other people.
And they also are so insecure that if they're not spending money, they don't feel like they have value.

[47:26] They don't feel like they have value if they're not spending, if they're not buying.
So yeah, it's pretty tough. It's pretty tough to break. It's pretty tough to break those habits.
Kids get shamed in school for their clothes and phone model. It starts early.
Yeah, for sure. Yeah, I mean, the polo shirts when I was a kid were the thing.
I um for for many years as a kid uh i would go to the hadassah bazaar where there'd just be tables of stuff you could buy clothes by the pound sometimes and i would also go to goodwill away again you could just get racks of clothes you'd buy them by the pound and sometimes you could find some real gems like that was kind of cool looking for cool clothing back in the day and i did come across some really great stuff my brother was better at it than i did than i was but i wasn't too, too bad at it.

[48:23] So, I mean, the good thing about being incredibly low status when you're young, because you go one of two ways, right?
If you're very low status when you're young, you then hunger for high status and destroy your life in pursuit of the unattainable.
Or you realize that status is largely bullshit.
And the only thing that matters is your relationship to your conscience.
The only thing that matters is your relationship to your conscience and most status seekers, are not trying to dominate other people but trying to bribe their bad conscience into shutting up and accepting that stuff is more important than people.

[49:11] I watch local says i was bully i think you mean bullied Please check.
Don't make me stumble through.
Just before you hit send, just check what you're writing.
I assume this means bullied. I was bullied and teased mercilessly because of my clothing when I was young.
That is not true. No, that is not true.
That is not true.
It wasn't because of your clothing. You were bullied and teased because the clothing represented something, not because of the clothing itself.
I mean, if you had a kind of dress-up day and the coolest kid came to work in your clothes, people wouldn't tease him. It's not the clothes.
They aren't teasing the clothes.
They're teasing what the clothes represent, which is you have parents who don't care about you.

[50:06] You have parents who don't care about you. You're not bonded, and you have parents who don't have social skills, right?
And you have parents who are depressed. You have parents who are incompetent.
And so you are being marked as someone who is low status.
The boys mark you as low status in part to protect the girls.

[50:31] Right? The boys mock you as low status in order to protect the girls, right?
Especially the kids who came in with dirty clothes. I had pants, and it sounds really sad.
I had pets when I was a kid, and I would go to school, even up to the age of 11 or 12.
Sometimes, if my hamster had gotten loose and I couldn't find my hamster for a while, they'd get into my closet, and they'd chew my clothes to try and make a nest. So I would occasionally have to go to school with, you know, this long before it was cool to have holes in your jeans or your pants or whatever.
I would go to school and, and, uh, I'd have holes in my pants because of my hamster.
Now that's not specifically a poverty thing, but yeah.
And I remember having my mother pick me up these big velour pants, the big velour, velour is like plow lines of fabric on your pants.
And I remember when I would run and make these sounds like I was spawning and chafing and I was, this sort of mental image that I'd run so fast and burst into flames from all the chafing from the, that was terrible.
All right. My parents never bought me the Adidas flyaway pants and I was tortured for it until they went out of style. An unforgettable year of bullying.
Again, it's not that. It's not that.

The Influence of Looks and Confidence in Social Dynamics

[51:53] Funny how we call secondhand clothes low status but labeled them vintage and you can charge a fortune and call it high fashion yeah yeah yeah.

[52:06] And of course, I mentioned this before, and I wrote about this in my novel, The God of Atheists, which you should definitely check out. It's a great book. slash books is free.

[52:14] I went through a total transformation. I went through like, got a great haircut, got great clothes, and everyone thought I was the new kid. I was like, why isn't anyone talking to me?
Girls then went from treating me like I was invisible to like I had the two prettiest girls in school, both vying for my attention.
Attention i hadn't fundamentally changed but i really grew into and was groomed into my looks and it does give you a bit a bit of a blinding example about the world how the world actually works right i'm the same on the inside but i'm pretty on the outside and that makes all the difference but you know i mean it's not like i was any better right that's not like i was any better, you see this all the time like the ugly duckling turning into the swan and all that right fashion is decided by the most good-looking slash popular kids in school um good-looking popular, there i mean have you ever known a kid who's good-looking but shy that happens it's not good-looking and popular no no no no oh i don't know this is a this is heavy deep mojo for you guys oh this is some heavy deep mojo for you guys and it's going to be annoying but it's It's also going to be empowering, and I'm not even going to ask you if you want it because you need it.
It's not the good-looking and popular kids who define the culture in school.

[53:40] It's the hyper-confident kids who entertain no self-doubt.
It's the hyper-confident kids who entertain no self-doubt.
Because remember, people don't have any values for the most part.
I mean, obviously there are Christians who do, but people don't have any values or morals or standards.
So all they do is judge your level of confidence.
If you're confident, they assume you know something they don't, it's an appeal to their insecurity, and they'll just trail after you.
They're just like ducklings after the mama duck.
They'll just trail after you, and you'll be in charge because you're confident.
Don't show doubt, don't show uncertainty, don't show fear, and you rule the social world.
In my school, the most confident were the worst behaved bad kids.
Right. I'm not saying that the confidence is equal to morals.
There was a guy in my high school. I still remember his name.
Many, many, many years, like 40 years later. I still remember his name.
And he was so confident. Now, he wasn't particularly good looking.
He wasn't particularly athletic.
He had a good sense of humor, but he was just wildly confident. And the girls loved him.

[55:05] I mean I was so enslaved to the female when I was a kid, thank you for the tip, I was so enslaved to the female when I was a kid I mean I mentioned this before but there was a girl I still remember her name, 40 years later there was a girl, she turned around and she said I don't have a pen, can you lend me a pen I had one pen.

[55:33] It was a test day at one pen.
So what did I do at the age of 13 or so?
What did I do when I needed a pen to take a test and a girl asked me if I had a pen to lend her? I handed over my pen.
No plan, no goal, no thought, no reason.
I couldn't say no because serve women is survival, I would rather fail the year than not give you a pen.

The Pen Incident: A Plan Gone Wrong

[56:16] I wasn't smooth enough to say well let's just link arms and share it I lied to the pen it was an exam, what was my plan I had no plan no plan other than service and subjugation, okay oh and also if it runs low on ink you can just repeatedly stab me with the pen and use my arterial blood to finish the exam, and it's gone, lend the princess your pen, yeah that's right it's gone, just gone now, of course I turn to the guy behind me and say who'd been watching this right I turned to the guy behind me. I'm like, hey, do you have a pen you can lend me?
He's like, no, because he just saw me give my pen to the girl. No.
And, you know, I'm not blaming him. I understand where he's coming from.

[57:12] So teach your hands out the test.
And I'm frozen in time like a flying amber. Stuck.
I'm buffering. I'm not buff, but I'm buffering.
That guy is a chat. Well, you know, he was policing my simping, and I'm not blaming him for it.
I, you know, I'm not saying I thanked him for it in the moment, but he was policing my simping.
No. Like, you just had a pen, you idiot. You gave it to the pretty girl.
I mean, if it was an old-style school, maybe I could have dipped her pigtails in my ink and written with strands of hair.
So what did I do?

[57:59] Well, I stared at the paper. I stared at the test for a while.
And then eventually I, what could I do?
I didn't want to go up to the teacher and say, I need a pen because I just gave this pen to this girl and that would unmask my spineless simpiness.
I bet your brain came up with a solution in a state of panic.
Well, I guess you thought you will bring two pens next year when you take that exam again.
Man, I got to tell you, I mean, you guys don't know how broke we were.
It was tough to have a pen. It was tough to have a pen.
I wasn't quite like my friend who brought his school stuff to school in plastic bags from the grocery store.
I wasn't that bad, but we were broke, man. We were broke.

Desperate for a Pen in the Middle of a Test

[58:55] And you go through all these scenarios. Okay, well, I can't say I need to go to the washroom because the test just started and I won't be believed.
Like, we just had a break.
So I can't say I go to the washroom. And what was I going to do?
Wandered the halls like a lost little lamb looking for...
Hey, is there a pen anywhere? Hello, Penny Pen. Pen, Penny Pen.
Come, Penny Pen. Maybe some kid left his locker unlocked and there's a pen there.
Maybe I'll wonder if some other kid who's going to the bathroom has two pens will lend me one. Penny Pen, I wanted a pen. Ugh.
I'm like, I'll chew the end of my fingertip to the point where I can bleed right my answers. And what can you do?
Now that the test has started, I can't ask other kids for the pen because the girl ahead of me will hear it.
And if the teacher sees me, and she will, or hears me talking to other kids during a test...
Anyway, I...
I eventually, and it wasn't that long, but I went up to the teacher and I leaned over the teacher's desk so I didn't have to speak too loudly and I said, and she gave me a pen. I had to whisper it so that the girl I gave the pen to wouldn't hear and understand my spineless simpiness.

The Missing Pen Mystery

[1:00:24] Quick question. At the end of the exam, did the girl give me my pen back?
Did the girl give me my pen back?
After the exam was done.

The Cascade of Crime: Stealing Pens and Property Taxes

[1:00:52] So she stole the pen from me and I stole the pen from the teacher because I didn't give the teacher the pen back because I had more classes to get to and I didn't have a pen.
No, she said, can I borrow a pen or do you have a pen I can borrow?
No, she didn't give it back.
So this is the cascade of crime. She steals from me, I steal from the teacher, the teacher steals from the parents through property taxes.

[1:01:18] So yeah that's a sign anyway so the reason i'm telling you this story is that uh did she did she love treasure and admire and crush on me and respect me for giving her my pen stefan valjean yeah yeah he thinks that man is me knew him at a glance, did she ever acknowledge her existence again no she did not now the confident kid call him bob that wasn't his name the confident kid bob the girls all loved him, and in one class we didn't have an assigned seating so in one class i was sitting behind bob and he took out a black marker. I assume it was a permanent marker or whatever.
Maybe it wasn't, but he took out a black marker and jokingly started drawing on the neck of the girl in front of him.
And she turned around and she was laughing and she's like, oh, quit it.
And then he drew on her cheeks. Like he literally drew on her cheeks.
And he was totally popular with the, I give birth to a pen full of the blood of my ancestors handed over in a kneeling gesture to a girl and get nothing.
He writes on girls' faces and they love him.

[1:02:45] Oh, he was the guy. When I first came to Canada, he was the guy.
When I first came to Canada, I lived in Whitby for a couple of months, then I came to Toronto.
And first day, I'm like out with the guys and like, let's get the girls.
And I'm like, okay, what does that mean? I don't know.
And they chased the girls down, and they wrestled the girls to the ground and punched them in the groin. This guy was in charge of that. The girls loved him.
So he wrestles girls down, punches them in the groin, draws on their faces, and they love him. I am chivalrous and invisible.
You know, it's tough to learn these lessons, man. It's tough to learn these lessons.
Tough to learn these lessons.
So, there's what women say they want, and there's what women actually like.
And I'm not talking all women, of course, right? is what women say they want and what they actually like.
My condolences for living in Toronto. Actually, it's pronounced Tranna. Tranna.

[1:04:00] The guy who sacrifices his exam to proffer me a pen.

From Simping to Player: Confidence as Social Currency

[1:04:07] Invisible. The guy who punches girls in the groins and draws in markers on their faces.
Irresistible how long before you let your wife borrow your pen i was over simping by this point because that was the end of simping for me right yeah 50 shades atlas whatever right so you understand that that was the end of, what age did you start becoming a player can't imagine you can't you not me smooth with the ladies how many times do i have to ask you guys to check what you're writing before you send it in Don't give me a half-stroke sentence.

[1:04:47] I started becoming a player probably around 15 or so.
I got the haircut and the cool clothes, and I started working out and exercising, and yeah, I became.
I was a bit of a flirt. No, correction, I was a lot of a flirt.
I remember being in a play.
I was in the play Our Town by Thornton Wilder, and I remember at the cast party, one of the girls got drunk, and she was all over me, and she's like, you're gorgeous, but you flirt with everybody. everybody.
I just remember like, yeah, because that's true. Can't argue with that.
Can't argue with that. Yeah, just check your work. Yeah, it's just worth the pen sacrifice, the end of simping. Yeah, I was kind of done with it after that.
You know, you just see, you see who's successful, right?
And the girls program the boys to treat them a certain way.

[1:05:33] And I really got that confidence is the only social coinage.

[1:05:44] I don't think they liked the brute. I think it was about being the most favored by him in order to be the safest and secure.
You don't think women are turned on by aggression? Have you met women?
Again, not all women, right?
And I'm not talking about abuse, right?
No. No, it's, uh, you are what you believe.
You are what you believe.
That was, I mean, I'm not saying this, what I fully believe now, but that was the lesson of my, my teens.
You are what you believe. Okay. Stop using the word creepy. The word creepy is really just a term of abuse these days.
And I know you're talking about like confidence and creepy and all of that, but I really, and this may be my own personal thing. Maybe it's just me.
I really, really hate the word creepy. It's sort of like the new autistic or Karen or whatever, right?
It's just, Creepy is an evocative word that has no content. It basically is just a slur without content.
So if you want to explain the content, fantastic, but don't just label things creepy and think that you're doing anything other than trying to activate remote control NPC dislike memes.
Girls don't want a guy who pedestals them.

Chivalry and Gender Roles: Opening Car Doors and Expectations

[1:07:09] Oh, what's that meme? Don't guys open car doors anymore? more?
And he's like, well, yeah. How do you think we get in?

[1:07:20] I have personally only met a handful of women who are into aggression and they all have depression or other mental health issues.
All right. How harsh do you want me to be in responding to that?
I, you know, I'll take you. Do you want me to be perfectly blunt?
I mean, are we going to do mano a mano here? Do you want me to be perfectly blunt?
I mean, I won't be mean, but do you want me to be perfectly blunt or do you want me to be diplomatic?
Wait for the ketchup.

The use of the word "creepy" and moral explanation

[1:08:10] I'm pretty sure you've used the word creepy before, but it's all good.
Oh, how passive-aggressive of you. Oh, how passive-aggressive of you.
Right, what did I say? Did I say you can't use the word creepy?
I said don't use it as a substitute for moral explanation. That's all.
All right, so yes, I have used the word creepy before. You get a little point there. Good for you. You used the word. You caught me.
By completely ignoring what I was saying, you scored an imaginary point. That's really sad.
That's really sad. All right.
So you said blunt. You say, I have personally only met a handful of women who are into aggression and they all have depression and other mental health issues.

[1:08:59] How do you know? How do you know? How do you know the women around you who are into aggression or not?
Right? How do they know? Do they watch vampire movies? Are they into Twilight or interview Anne Rice's interview with a vampire?
Are they into, like, do you understand? Do you know how incredibly aggressive, most romance novels are?
Have you comprehended this?
How incredibly aggressive, if not downright whatever, romance novels are?
This is all All guys going insane with lust and overpowering women.

[1:09:45] Did she ever read Fifty Shades of Grey? Did she ever watch the movie?
I mean, even Jane Austen is half this way. So how would you know?
I've only met women who are into aggression a few times. How do you know? How do you know?
How do you know what people are secretly fantasizing about? How do you know what their hidden drawer on their book stand is? How do you know?
I mean, we do know that the most popular fiction work in all of human history is Fifty Shades of Grey.
The most popular fiction work in all of human history is about a sexual abuser who bribes a woman to let her beat him.

[1:10:32] Women love that. Now, I'm not saying that a woman would like that in real life.
And that's why I didn't say, I said women are turned on. A lot of women are turned on by aggression. That doesn't mean that they want it in their life.

[1:10:46] I mean, you just have to think in evolutionary terms. And I say this with great sympathy. Just think about this in evolutionary terms, right?
In evolutionary terms, a lot of reproduction occurred through sexual aggression from men towards women.
Right we know that a little bit less in the west obviously a little bit more and i would include in this things like uh arranged marriages and and so on right so any woman who was absolutely repulsed by any form of aggression well if your tribe gets conquered the men are killed and the women are taken as concubines so any woman who was utterly repulsed by any form of aggression in the romantic area would have a survival disadvantage and i say this with great sympathy right but would have a a survival disadvantage over other women, right?

Survival disadvantage and sympathy for sexual aggression

[1:11:34] So again, just to be real clear, I'm not saying women want this.
I'm just saying that there is an aspect of female nature for some women that is turned on by male aggression.
And again, don't be aggressive. I'm not saying they want it in the real life and I'm giving them full props for the sympathy of sexual aggression in our evolution.
So I want to be real clear about that. I mean, people will misunderstand what I'm saying if they want, but I at least want to be real clear.
But, yeah.

[1:12:07] I mean, yeah, war brides for sure. If you look at the typical example which is given is if you look at single mothers and the advice they give to their sons.
Sons, single mothers give advice to their sons on how to behave that the single mothers don't themselves follow, right?
So the typical, and again, there's lots of exceptions to this, but this is a bit of a cliche and it's a bit of a stereotype and I assume that there's something to it.
So the single mother says to her son, well, you have to treat her like she's a princess.
You You have to open the cartel for her. You have to defer to her.
You have to, you know, in a sense, simp for her. She wouldn't put it that way, but you know, you have to be chivalrous and worship her and so on.
But then who did the single mom make a kid with? Someone like that? Nope.
In fact, generally quite the opposite. Who does the single mother generally date? Someone like that? Nope. Not usually.
So the advice that is being given is not the advice that is being followed.

[1:13:20] So, be skeptical, right? Be skeptical of women and what they say.
Be skeptical of men and what they say, right?
That's setting the son up to be a tiny husband.
No, sorry to be annoying, but no, because they don't want a husband like that.

[1:13:40] A single mother, in general, survives by exploiting others, as would a single father, right?
And this is simply, and by exploiting, or maybe that's too strong, probably not, but to soften it a little bit, a single mother survives by gaining resources from others.
I mean, women and children survive by gaining resources from others, because if you have a bunch of kids and you're breastfeeding and raising kids and toddlers and forks and electrical sockets and boiling pots of water on the stove and streets with giant Stephen King trucks running down it, then you have a constant job to keep your children alive. So the resources have to come in from somewhere.

[1:14:16] So she is setting him up to be a servant to women because the mother survival requires on people being servants to her the single mother right now in old times it would be her parents who would raise the kid pay for the kid or maybe a little bit of charity um or uh now of course it's the welfare state and so on right so you know single mothers that kind of need massive amounts of resources flowing into the family system they don't get it from a loving husband so they get it from somewhere else so their their survival requires on in a sense social or male simping and so they're setting up their son to be the sloppy second beta male after the woman's had a kid to provide for her right.

Young Women's Relationship to Christianity vs Aggressive Religions

[1:15:15] So, yeah. I mean, if you look at women's relationship to Christianity in the popular culture among young people, and again, there's lots of exceptions.
If you look at young women's relationship to Christianity versus other more aggressive religions, then you can see what they're like.
Steph, I like your advice of being skeptical of others. Why do some people call that being a contrarian? I find that label dismissive and insulting.
Well, it's just a thoughtless label. So being a contrarian is a way of telling you or trying to get you to believe, that you don't have thoughts, you only have reactions.
You say potato, I say potato. You say tomato, I say tomato.
Potato, potato, tomato, tomato, let's go the whole thing. Oh, I hate that song. It's so annoying.
Even when Ella and Louis Armstrong does it.
So, yeah, contrarian is, well, whatever I say, you'll just say the opposite.
You're not thinking, you just have reactions, you're just defensive, you're just trying to be smart by opposing others.
It's an insult because you're claiming to have thoughts and they're saying you don't have thoughts. You have only reactions. And so, yeah, it is dismissive and insulting.

[1:16:33] Come on, baby. And now, tell me, hit me with a why if you want me to go into you are what you believe you are.
Uh hit me with the one i want to follow where you guys have other questions comments want to talk about other things that's great but if you, i want me to go into more of this because it's a pretty wild idea very well said thank you for answering my question you are what you think you are.

[1:17:05] Now metaphysically that's not the case if i if i think i'm a unicorn i don't become a unicorn corn, right? So you are what you think you are.
You have confidence if you think you have confidence. If you think you have confidence, you have confidence.
And here's the funny thing too.
Other people's default position is to accept your self-definition.
So not only are you what you think you are, other people will accept what you think you are.
Again, all of this is in the absence of you are what you know you are Nope, no, no, I don't know what know you are means, Was I a public philosopher before I became a public philosopher?
I was not I was a software executive I was a graduate student I was an actor and a playwright and a director.

[1:18:09] I have now been a public philosopher, lo these 18 years, and why did I do it?
I did it because I believed I could do it.
I had some evidence, of course, right? But I did not know more than 5% of my abilities when I started out this thing. And that's being generous.
And I'm not kidding about this. This may be surprising to you.
I did not know more than 5% of my abilities when I started Free Domain.
Back then, Free Domain Radio. I didn't know.
I didn't know. I mean, I remember very vividly somebody brought up a dream in one of the early shows.
And I did a show in the 500s, I think, called Argot and the Dragon, based upon my old Dungeons and Dragons paladin character, whose name is Argot, A-R-G-O-T-H.
Still use that sometimes in games.
But I remember somebody came up with a dream and it was just like my brain had this kind of seizure and just began unpacking the dream.
I didn't know that I could do that on the fly.

[1:19:21] I didn't know.
With the role playing, so, I mean, I did improv in theater school and I was, you know, pretty good at it, whatever, right? But I didn't know when I started this show that, I mean, I remember when I first like, okay, let's try a role play.
I was kind of desperate to get at the truth or something like that, right?
Yeah, Argos, St. Argos and the Wingless Dragon, it's show 438.
Not in the 500s, it's show 438.

[1:19:52] And I remember when it's like, okay, you play your mother and I'll play you, right?
I didn't know if the other person could do it. I didn't know if I could do it and it just happened and it just worked beautifully.

[1:20:09] I didn't know.
I didn't, I mean, I knew that I was good with analogies and metaphors as a writer, but I'd never spontaneously generated them in my spoken work.
So when people would toss me these incredibly complex questions and they would just crystallize and fall into place and the metaphors and analogies would bubble up and the explanations would be fantastic, I didn't know that I could do that when all I had done before was debate politics and write some essays.
I didn't know that I could combine the artistic creative side of my brain with the analytical rational part of my brain because I trained for years and years and years in creativity.

[1:20:57] Through art and writing and acting and novel writing and poetry.
And I also trained for years and years and years in logic, both in school but also you can't be a computer programmer if you don't have a deep appreciation for and it sharpens your skill in logic because all you're basically doing is debating with the computer and getting it to do what you want and it has to be logical and it has to be efficient and it right so i was training the two sides of my brain the analytical and the artistic analytical in software and artistic in creativity in writing and some acting and all of that right but i didn't know that there was these big cross beams that wired these two things together and that I could combine these two things to give massive creative metaphorical and analogous juice to moral arguments because either it's like Aristotle which is all analysis and no analogies or it's all Plato which is very little analysis and a lot of analogies life is like the forms the symposium the two souls separated the the silver and the gold and the the bronze of society and the noble light. It's all analogies.
Not analytical reasoning in the way that.

[1:22:10] Aristotle does. I didn't know I could fuse these two together. I didn't know.
I didn't know that it would happen spontaneously. I didn't know that counter-arguments would just pop into my head during the course of a debate, and that I would be able to fluidly and fluently express them in real time with great analogies and often some fairly good humor.
I didn't know these things. I didn't know.
I wouldn't have guessed them, and I wouldn't have put any money on that happening.

[1:22:46] What I did do was I said, I'm not going to restrain myself or hold myself back.
So the idea that when I was having trouble connecting with someone in a call-in show, the idea that I would say, let's just do a role play, that was the impulse that came to me.
And what I said to myself from the very beginning was, if I'm going to do this, I'm going to do this without restraint.
I'm going to do this without self-criticism. I'm going to do this without self-attack.
That doesn't mean that I can't improve and don't take feedback.
Of course, I'm constantly inviting that.
But the impulse came to me to say, let's try role play. Or somebody said, I want to talk about a dream I had.
And I'm like, okay, let's give it a try, right? I'm going to see if I can.
I'm going to see what's possible. And I'm going to open myself to all that I'm capable of, that I don't even know that I'm capable of, which is kind of not not a me thing.
If you have this sort of hidden talent and ability that like the Bee Gees weren't even that big until one of the, I think the tall Bee Gees guy was doing some scream at the end of a song.
And they were like, Hey, the engineers were like, that was, that was pretty musical. Do it again. And they discovered this whole falsetto thing.
They didn't even know. And then they became massively famous in part for these falsetto harmonies. Right.
Didn't know. Didn't know.

[1:24:05] So if you have a principle that says, I'm going to follow my impulses, and I'm going to explore what I'm capable of without judgment, without restraint, I'm willing to be a vehicle for my potential.
Because, you know, the old thing that life is lived for, but only understood backwards a lot of times.
Everything that you believe about yourself, this is why I said it's not what you know you are. Everything you believe about yourself is based upon your past.
But all of your potential is in your future. So if you say my potential is based upon what I've done, that's incorrect.
I hadn't done 95% of the stuff I do in the show.
I hadn't done. I didn't know when I first started doing the show that I'd be pretty good at riffing off what people are saying and creating compelling content just based on live streams. I didn't do live streams when I first started the show.
Certainly not video ones and certainly not in this kind of format.
I remember starting it thinking, oh, maybe, no, there's some things I tried doing, a couple of video games, things they weren't particularly compelling.
So it's not like everything's been a massive success or whatever, but I'm willing to try.
Willing to try, just say yes. Just say yes.
Just say yes. So you don't know what you're capable of, and that's humility.
Humility is, I don't know what I'm capable of, but I'm willing to try.
Maybe it'll work, maybe it won't, right? Maybe it'll succeed, maybe it won't.

Embracing the Unknown: Prejudging our Capabilities

[1:25:33] If you believe, like, I had no empirical evidence that I would be a great computer programmer, when I started my business, or that I would be a great manager, or that I would be really good at dealing with clients and negotiating, or that I would be really good at making sales presentations and speaking at technical conferences. Like, I didn't know any of that stuff.
But I did say, I'm not going to prejudge what I'm capable of, because that would be vanity, and that would be pretending that the future is the same as the past.
And the future is not the same as the past. That's why life stays interesting.
That's really the purpose of life is to have a future not the same as the past.
Certainly in my family, life, I don't want the future to be the same as the past.
I'm just going to do a refresh here because I'm not getting any new text here.
Oh, no, that's fine. People just ain't giving me new text. I don't know if everybody, no, he's still here.
I don't know if you all faded off doing other things or if I'm just blowing your mind or if this is interesting to you or not, just keep me posted.
I'm not begging for affirmation. I just want to make sure that what I'm saying is of value and of interest to you.

[1:26:43] How dare, I mean, it's what I would say to myself, how dare I think, how dare I pretend to know what I'm capable of? How dare I pretend to know what I'm capable of?
What vanity that would be and what a restriction that would be.
Now, of course, if you really do try and achieve excellence, it will often annoy people in your life. That's just a price you have to pay, right?
Mr. B said, I always consider that I'm capable of something until proven otherwise. Sure. Yeah. Why not?
Why not? I mean, I remember when I first did karaoke, I remember doing the song addicted to love by Robert Palmer.
I can't do that. I can't sing that song. I mean, there are a few songs I can sing. All right, but I can't, I can't sing that stuff.
This is a good mindset to have needed to hear this. I feel like I'm not operating at my true potential.
Uh, you will never be operating at your true potential because there's no such thing as true potential.
Yeah. You think that there's a top to the mountain of your potential? There's not you know i'm still exploring what it is i'm capable of doing i don't know there's no top to this mountain ah i have now achieved my true potential i have now achieved my final form there's no final form the only final form is you doing this in a coffin that's it the final form i don't know still don't know what i'm capable of what i can do what i mean i'm still exploring that.

[1:28:10] This is an interesting conversation, but usually the importance and significance of such discussions hit me only sometime later, running as a hidden process in the back of my brain.
Everything you achieve that you didn't know you were capable of is another argument that you don't know what you're capable of.
I now have, I mean, grand old age of 57 and change, I now have enough experience to be, achieving things I didn't know I could achieve.

[1:28:49] That I just assume I'll give it a try. It doesn't mean I will succeed, but I'm never going to say I can't. I'm never going to say I can't.

Embracing a Mindset of Infinite Potential

[1:28:58] I mean, I'll give you a silly example. So when I was in theater school, I was commissioned to write, this is going to sound completely strange, I was commissioned to write a play based on a Greek myth for giant puppets, giant man-sized puppets.
I was commissioned to write a play for giant man-sized puppets. And I wrote the play.
And I went out there, and the director and the puppet master was not doing a good job of directing the play, so I just elbowed my way in, and I half-directed a play of giant puppets based upon a script I wrote on an ancient Greek myth. Didn't know I could do it.
Just, yeah, you need to do this. This works better. You move that arm there.
Like, I just went in and started. I didn't know I could do that.
I didn't know I could do that.
Like bgs didn't know they had falsettos like they were pleasant to hear.

Taking the First Step: Figuring Out What to Do Next

[1:29:59] As cliche as it sounds taking the first step is important to figure out what to do next or which direction to take, yeah i don't know what taking this first step means i that's not a mindset thing that's not I don't know how to do that what I do know is don't prejudge your possibilities, don't prejudge your possibilities that's vanity that's saying that my tiny little brain conscious mind knows all the depths of my potential lizard brain and layer brain and all that to give it a try okay.

[1:30:45] I don't know what it means to give it a try. I mean, I, I, I, sorry, I know what it means.
I, I, you could be right. I know, hey, there is no try. There is only do or do not.
But it wasn't for me. Like, it's like, okay, I seem to have good ideas about this.
I'm going with it. Like, I'm not going to say, well, I've never directed a giant man-sized puppet play before. Like, how could I do that?
Well, I, I, I don't have a computer science degree. agree how can i be a tech lead how can i be a chief technical officer and core programmer for the entire architecture i've never taken a programming course i mean i took one in grade eight or something which with punch cards or whatever right i'm not going to say i can't because that's vanity now if i try things and there's empirical evidence that i can't like i I get up and try and sing Robert Palmer's Addicted to Love and I can't sing it. Okay, well, let's accept that.
I mean, let's not. I'm not living in fantasy world.

Confusion over Unintelligible Statements

[1:31:55] Maybe that mindset comes from the way they were patented. I have no idea what that means.
I think I'm just going to start ignoring stuff that doesn't make any sense.
Because I read it, I trust you guys, and I assume that you're saying something that's comprehensible.
And maybe I'm just missing something obvious, but maybe that mindset comes from the way they were patented.
Leather shoes, the Bee Gees vocal cords, I don't know what you're talking about.
So normally I'm like trusting, maybe there's just some people who don't spell check or reason check what they're saying, but I can't just read stuff out, I guess, at this point, because it's wasting people's time.
Again, unless there's something obvious that I'm missing.
But yeah, I mean, it's funny because people have this mostly backwards, right?
Which is they say, how dare you have the vanity thing to think you're capable of this, that, or the other? How dare you have the arrogance thing?

[1:33:00] No, the arrogance is thinking that you know your limits. That's the arrogance.
That you think you know your limits.
People do the most amazing, impressive, astonishing stuff every day in the world.
How dare you have the vanity to think you know the edge of your limits.
Steph, would you be able to do a list of books that you'd recommend?
Parent Effectiveness Training and Six Pillars of Self-Esteem are great, and I was wondering if you have more recommendations.
Oh, gosh, I think way back early on I had a whole books page on an ancient website, with descriptions of books and all of that.
Yeah, I mean, I've talked a lot about the books. Of course, people I interview usually have good books, so there's a reading list just based on my interviews, so you can start with that, but I don't think I'll sit down and go through a bunch of book recommendations.
And also some of the books I haven't read in forever that were fairly influential to me.
And I don't know if I'd still have the same opinion because you can't ever step at the same river twice. Yeah, I don't think so.
I mean, generally the books that people I've been, if I find an interesting book, that doesn't mean I agree with everything that they write, of course, right?
But if I find an interesting book, I will generally interview the author if I could, or at least in the past.
So you can look for those., look for interviews. Yes.

[1:34:16] Start with the Bible and Steph's books.
In that order.

[1:34:23] The vanity of knowing the edge of your limits reminds me of the vanity of central planning.
How dare you know what other people are capable of?
Well, that's central planning, it's knowing what other people should or shouldn't do. All right, that's vanity, right?
Somebody says that maybe what my guardian angel was writing about, maybe that mindset comes from the way way they were patented but maybe he meant parented yeah but i mean honestly if uh if you can't be bothered to spell check before you send i'm just not going to read i mean it's the old thing like when i was a manager if somebody um put me in a resume with a bunch of typos and the date's wrong i'm just like no i'm just right a lot of mistake people mistake skill and now now know how with with arrogance.
So people use the word arrogance to say, don't disturb the vanity of my insecurity.

The Vanity of Insecurity and Negative Self-Definitions

[1:35:24] Don't disturb the vanity of my insecurity. Insecurity is like, I'm not good enough. Well, you don't know that.
How do you know? First of all, if the thought comes before, like if you think you're not good enough and therefore you don't try, that's vanity.
And all the people who, oh, I'm so insecure, I don't feel good enough.
That's just vanity. I have no pity. I have no pity.
I actually have a kind of bit of contempt for this kind of stuff. I don't have.

[1:35:52] I don't. Like, it's just vanity. Well, I'm just not good enough.
I'll never be good enough. It's like, ah, shut up with your vanity.
You don't know. Now, I have sympathy for the stuff that was inflicted on them as kids that they would have. I have that mindset. I have sympathy for that.
But, you know, if assholes tell you who you are and you believe them, I don't know what to tell you.
I mean, if people who are child abusers, let's say, people who are child abusers tell you who you are, lie about you, tell you who you are and they're abusive, and you believe them, I don't really know what to say. I don't really know what to say.
I mean, nobody ever talked to me, really, about my potential when I was a kid.
And nobody, I mean, everybody fought like hell against my interest in philosophy.
My family outside of my mother never read my books, never got any positive feedback.

[1:37:00] I mean, you understand a negative times a negative is a positive.
So if an asshole says you're an asshole, it's a positive.
I mean, if bad people say that you're bad, you're probably good.
I mean, if you're not in competition with them and whatever, like just some battling for turf mafia situation.
But if assholes say you're assholes, if assholes say you're an asshole, you're not an asshole.
Cancel that. it cancels out. So if you say, well, my parents really, really harmed me.
They're really mean. They yelled at me. They hit me there, you know, and I carry that weight and I still feel that they're right.
And it's like, I don't know what to say.
People you openly define as immoral gave you a label.
And do you accept that? Why? I mean, I guess you may not know you had to when you were a kid in order to survive. Sure. Yeah. Yeah.
Yeah. I get it. You live in North Korea. You got to praise the glorious leader. I get all of that.
Why would you, the moment that, the cage door is unlocked, why aren't you out and gone and done?
I was born into a prison. When I became an adult, I was given the key.
And I just swallowed it and sat there for 50 fucking more years.

[1:38:28] But why?
But why? You become an adult. You get the key out of prison. I took it at 15.

[1:38:43] Why would you swallow the key? Like, swallow the verbal abuse.
Why would you swallow the negative definitions?
Oh, you're nothing. You're stupid. You'll never amount to anything.
You're weird. You're lost to the world. You're selfish. You're like, what?
They literally hand you the key. How old are you? 18. here's the key okay I'm sitting here I don't follow, man the moment I could get out I was gone baby gone now it took me a little while to, shrug off the residue I get all of that, but, most people are complaining of unjust imprisonment, when they swallowed the key.
And, to extend the analogy to an unpleasant place, they have to go through a lot of shit to get the key back.

[1:39:46] All right, any last tips, comments, questions, issues, challenges, gauntlets, medieval, bacchanalia rounds of mead-laced honey drinking? Anything?
Anything? It's been a useful show. I think it's been a very useful show.
I think a very positive show, a very helpful show. slash donate. Of course, if you're helping out the show, I'd really, really appreciate it.
Do you find the Super Bowl commercials interesting in order to get a pulse in society, especially from a humorous standpoint?
You're donating directly to FDR. Thank you for a free domain dot com slash donate.
Yeah, I mean, the elites, I think like people at Ivy League schools, more than 80% of them believe that the government mostly, if not always, does the right thing.
Whereas for the average American, it's like 11% of people believe that.
I mean, it really couldn't be a wider gap, right?
Do you still do dream analysis? I do.
I love the show. Yeah. Yeah, if you have, listen, of course, here, let me give you the email.
Call in at Call in at
Send me a message. Please include your Skype ID, and we can have a conversation about whatever is on your mind.

[1:41:03] I've done a whole bunch recently. They're all clogging up the queue because I've been doing a lot of work lately.
I'm getting the sense of mortality, and I've got to get my thoughts out because I can see the end. I mean, 57. I'm not old, but I'm not young.
Probably past, I mean it's late middle age you could say not quite elderly, but I can see I can see, I'm over, you know that Close Encounters of the Third Kind poster where there's a light over the over the hill and the road.

[1:41:30] I completely forgot that today was Super Bowl day as well. I'm just watching sports.
It's fundamentally incomprehensible to me, but, you know, it's just maybe a personal taste thing.
You have to deal with people talking about the Super Bowl. Plus, it's Super Bowl, plus isn't Taylor Swift there as well?
Can you do a fast version of the argument for why you shouldn't care about people's kids more than they do?
Because you should retain your caring for that which you have some authority over, and if you expose a need to people, who are willing to harm their own kids, they will simply manipulate their kids and harm them further in order to torture you and get resources.
So you're exposing a vulnerability and going unarmed into a fight where the other person is willing to half slaughter you. So it's bad.

A Longing for Truly Funny Movies

[1:42:15] Speaking of funny, can you recall a movie that really made you laugh and you enjoyed?
Oh yeah, Monty Python's Life of Brian and the Holy Grail.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail, two fantastic comedies.
But yeah it's fine you can't find stuff that's funny anymore it's all mean and woke and anti this and anti that and promoting all kinds of creep creepy stuff and all the heroes and the villains are totally predictable because of demographics and right so yeah it's been a long time since i've seen a movie that really made me laugh all right well thank you everyone everyone, so much for your comments.
I really appreciate that. It ain't much of a show without you, and it's great to have you here.
I love these conversations. It's a great pleasure to me.
And have yourself a wonderful, wonderful week. I will speak to you on Wednesday.
I'll try and get some more done on the Peaceful Parenting book and another side project, and maybe I'll tell you about that at some point, but we'll get to that.
So thank you all. Have yourself a wonderful fabulous lovely sunday sunday sunday is a short connery and uh talk to you soon lots of love take care bye.

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