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You Made It Weird #248: Drew Michael
Episode 248: You Made It Weird
Drew Michael
You Made It WeirdYou Made It Weird

You Made It Weird #248: Drew Michael

Drew Michael (comedy!) makes it weird!

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Comments

  1. Andy says:

    Stick to comedy Drew…you sound like an imbecile when you venture into the realm of politics.

  2. Drew says:

    Funny you’d call my assessment lazy and then go on to straight up guess as to what research I’ve done. I don’t remember what I said on the podcast, but since we briefly skimmed that topic, yes, my argument was truncated. (Very different from lazy.)
    As far as Harris, I’ve read two of his books (End of Faith, Letter to a Christian Nation), probably about 10 of his articles/blogs, watched numerous full-length interviews, debates, and panel discussions in which he was prominently featured.
    Harris is nice for atheist beginners. It’s a nice narrative. It’s cozy. But it’s completely lacking in cognitive cohesion. It’s facile. It’s petulant. I “outgrew” that view. For example, he gets the concept of motivation completely wrong. (I’ve written about that here: http://www.drewmichael.com/blog/are-we-always-conscious-of-our-motivations)
    In addition, Harris has absolutely zero grasp of geopolitical history (and reality). All one has to do is read his article/transcript “Why Don’t I Criticize Israel?” (http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/why-dont-i-criticize-israel) and it becomes overtly clear that he has not the slightest clue what he’s talking about. That article alone should be enough to discredit him as a political thinker/journalist. He gets all of his facts wrong (his “human shields” point is a complete fabrication) and he shows immense bias by referring to the “sides” as “Israel” and “Her enemies.” It’s lunacy. It’s about as nuanced as something a 12-year-old Hillel resident would write.
    He’s like that across the board when it comes to foreign policy, etc. This is where the debate usually takes an unfortunate turn. It breaks down into a semantic argument, which takes us away from the real point. People call Harris “Islamophobic” and he retorts that he’s only bigoted against ideas, not people. This is true, only in theory. The conclusions he draws, the bias he shows (for a multitude of reasons) are bigoted against people, even though that’s probably not his intention. (I don’t think he’s an evil guy.) He disseminates state propaganda without even knowing it. So he’s either ignorant, lacks the proper capacity of understanding, or a liar.
    I’m sure Harris has some interesting things to say about neuroscience and might be able to make some interesting theoretical moral arguments. I’m not talking about him in that context. When he tries to apply these ideas to actual real-world events and complex geopolitical paradigms, he looks utterly absurd. He clings to these narratives that are based solely on emotion and stubborn adherence to pre-concieved notions and narratives, easily refuted by empirical data he refuses (or is unable) to acknowledge. And he’s fanatical about it. The ultimate irony is, in that sense, he’s more religious than most religious people he criticizes.

  3. Brendan L says:

    Great pod as usual!  I thought Drew was a really great and thoughtful guest.  You two had good chemistry throughout.  I did want to at least say that Drew’s critique of Sam Harris was pretty lazy…kinda like his critique of American sniper.   I totally get sometimes when someone takes a stance without much knowledge on a topic and I ALSO assume American sniper to be mostly a propanga flick, BUT I have also not seen it and wouldn’t be surprised if it at least touched on the negative undercurrent of soldier drive similar to the Hurt Locker.  I actually didn’t mind his strong opinions on these things too much because I subscribe to your theory of it making the dynamic a more interesting listen.  I would just say that you should do some of your own research on Sam Harris as you would find his knowledge and critical thinking abilities to be extremely interesting, regardless if you are in agreement or not.  He would be an exceptional guest as well.  
    Thanks again both of you!

    • Brendan L says:

      After further thought, I felt I maybe came across too negative.  I’d like to reiterate that I thought Drew was an extremely interesting and fun guest…someone who I’d love to go see in a heartbeat.  His take on Star Wars was perfect and his Kumail was scary good.  I guess it came from a place of being a Harris fan…I understand we won’t all agree on everything.  At the end of the day, Drew is the kind of person who I’d like to see have continued success…he seems like good people.  

      • Sad Clown says:

        So do you, Brendan.  The internet is full of reactionary shitheads, but from where I’m standing you’re not one of ’em.  Good on ya, mate.

    • Roman says:

      I agree with your observation about his offhand lazy critique of harris.  However withthe way that he spoke of him, I would guess he has never actually read any of his work, and has just seen a youtube clip or two (which is usually out of context for harris critics), or has read some Glen Greenwald or Resa Aslan articles which has been shown to greatly misrepresent his views.   I’m guessing its the later as he seemed like a fan of Greenwald. The problem most people have with Harris is that they are usually shown out of context his philosophical writings vs his political. And his opponents (greenwald because harris has disagreed with some of his stances, which greenwald then took very personally, mostly because it made him look like an idiot) willfully try to slander him.
      I do think  harris would be a fantastic guest as Pete’s and sams discussion on meditation alone would be amazing.  If pete could handle some uncomfortable questions when they get to the god question, I think it could be one of the best episodes petes ever done.

      • Drew says:

        Funny you’d call my assessment lazy and then go on to straight up guess as to what research I’ve done. I don’t remember what I said on the podcast, but since we briefly skimmed that topic, yes, my argument was truncated. (Very different from lazy.)
        As far as Harris, I’ve read two of his books (End of Faith, Letter to a Christian Nation), probably about 10 of his articles/blogs, watched numerous full-length interviews, debates, and panel discussions in which he was prominently featured.
        Harris is nice for atheist beginners. It’s a nice narrative. It’s cozy. But it’s completely lacking in cognitive cohesion. It’s facile. It’s petulant. I “outgrew” that view. For example, he gets the concept of motivation completely wrong. (I’ve written about that here: http://www.drewmichael.com/blog/are-we-always-conscious-of-our-motivations)
        In addition, Harris has absolutely zero grasp of geopolitical history (and reality). All one has to do is read his article/transcript “Why Don’t I Criticize Israel?” (http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/why-dont-i-criticize-israel) and it becomes overtly clear that he has not the slightest clue what he’s talking about. That article alone should be enough to discredit him as a political thinker/journalist. He gets all of his facts wrong (his “human shields” point is a complete fabrication) and he shows immense bias by referring to the “sides” as “Israel” and “Her enemies.” It’s lunacy. It’s about as nuanced as something a 12-year-old Hillel resident would write.
        He’s like that across the board when it comes to foreign policy, etc. This is where the debate usually takes an unfortunate turn. It breaks down into a semantic argument, which takes us away from the real point. People call Harris “Islamophobic” and he retorts that he’s only bigoted against ideas, not people. This is true, only in theory. The conclusions he draws, the bias he shows (for a multitude of reasons) are bigoted against people, even though that’s probably not his intention. (I don’t think he’s an evil guy.) He disseminates state propaganda without even knowing it. So he’s either ignorant, lacks the proper capacity of understanding, or a liar.
        I’m sure Harris has some interesting things to say about neuroscience and might be able to make some interesting theoretical moral arguments. I’m not talking about him in that context. When he tries to apply these ideas to actual real-world events and complex geopolitical paradigms, he looks utterly absurd. He clings to these narratives that are based solely on emotion and stubborn adherence to pre-concieved notions, easily refuted by empirical data he refuses (or is unable) to acknowledge. And he’s fanatical about it. The ultimate irony is, in that sense, he’s more religious than most religious people he criticizes.

  4. Kristi says:

    Multiple universes haven’t been proven. They are just a part of string theory that would have to be true for string theory to be true. And string theory has not been proven to be true either.

    • Kristi says:

      Sorry, I meant to say multiple dimensions haven’t been proven, nothing more than the 4 we are familiar with. But the multiple  universes haven’t been proven either.

  5. Matt Ellis says:

    Hey Pete, I know you tend to get some flak when you have people like Deepak Chopra and other spiritual people on the podcast. 

    There’s a British physicist named Brian Cox who does a lot of programming for the BBC and was recently on Conan. He’s an articulate dude with similar hair to yours. I think he’d be a great counter balance to all that spiritual stuff.

  6. Josh says:

    Great ep as usual Pete! The bit about all the Star Wars movies sucking was hilarious and true. I love the original three, but they are so terrible! 
    This ep is the perfect cap to a quality YMIW week — 2 eps last week, the late Sat. show in San Diego this weekend, and a quality episode today! 
    The “Why-Phone” riff was very funny, btw. Been wracking my brain for  witty slogan: “Why-Phone: Your sense of self in your pocket” … Meh. Wish I was a professional comedian.
    Anyway, MOSTLY FREE PODCAST!! 

  7. Bogarts says:

    Great episode! Awesome balance between funny and deep… and still touching on fresh topics after so many episodes.
    And his Kumail is unbelievable.