Jordan Peterson interviews Scott Tinker.
Tinker also spoke at the ARC convention last October.
Part of the ongoing ARC Conference. Video here.
The Better Story: The Liberal Democratic Ideal
NEW: Niall Ferguson, Andrew Hastie, and Rebeccah Heinrichs warn against the decline of liberal democracy and the rise of threats to the West | ARC Conference
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Historian Niall Ferguson warns of decline in liberal democracy
Historian Niall Ferguson has cautioned that liberal democracies are in decline around the world, with the number falling to just 32; or 13% of the world’s population.
Addressing the ARC conference, Ferguson called upon leaders across the political spectrum to come together to promote liberal democracies. “We must organise much better to uphold the values of individual freedom. Civilisation is too precious an achievement to become a conservative project only.”
“Liberal democracy in the US, the greatest of all the liberal democracies, seems to be threatened from within. The Axis of ill-will has fallen,” he warned. “These axes present much more of a strategic threat than any of the axes of the 1930s… This is true not just of the US, but also true of Anglosphere countries too.”
Ferguson took aim at the current lack of belief amongst Western leaders as insufficient in pushing back against autocracies around the world. “The current leadership don’t have a great level of conviction in their own institutions. They don’t have the same sense of passionate conviction that their enemies have. They cannot comprehend that Xi Jinping’s thought is Marxist–Leninist.”
Australian Shadow Defence Minister Andrew Hastie calls for West to improve preparedness against adversaries
During a panel discussion at the ARC conference, Australian Shadow Defence Minister Andrew Hastie said that there are “serious questions to answer in terms of our defence preparedness”, in light of the challenges posed to Western nations by adversaries.
He noted that he was “concerned about our resilience in the smallest organising group in society — the family”, and relayed an account from his own combat experiences where an Afghan family had suffered an IED explosion, and had returned home. He asked, “if the shoe was on the other foot, would we be as resilient as that family?”
Concluding, Hastie iterated that “bad government is the problem”, saying that “what people are crying out for is good government”. He ended by saying that “what people want is order”, and “moral leaders”.
Academic Rebeccah Heinrichs says the West has been slow to react to threats
At the ARC conference, in front of a crowd of 1,500 delegates, academic Rebeccah Heinrichs outlined the systemic challenges facing the West, with regimes that are “ideologically very committed”, in contrast to the West, where we have been “slow to realise what is upon us”.
She argued that the challenge for the West had come after the end of the Cold War, with the assumption that “commercialism” would “make the Chinese … liberal”, and that instead, they had become “happy and communist”.
Heinrichs warned that the West has to “believe that is worth doing” in order to succeed against adversaries like Russia, and that it “requires enormous amounts of statecraft and motivation to rebuild the defence industrial base to do that”. She said that a great distinction among the West was that we “value life”.
ARC is an international community that is building a vision for a better world where every citizen can prosper, contribute, and flourish, and where solutions to the challenges we face can be found. The inaugural conference will be held between October 30–November 1, in London, convening international leaders from the UK, US, and Australia, who will be contributing to discuss and debate these challenges to find practical solutions.
DAY 1 Capitalism and ESG
NEW: Presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy sets out case against ‘woke capitalism’ | ARC Conference
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Investor Sir Paul Marshall calls for an end to crony capitalism
Speaking to 1,500 delegates at the ARC conference, Sir Paul Marshall introduced a discussion around capitalism by criticising “crony capitalism” and ‘corporatism’, and arguing that “the managerial classes… take control, and manage the system in their own best interests”.
He called for society to “‘rejoice in the abundance that true free enterprise and free markets create”, noting that “extreme poverty has fallen from 90% to 10% [and] … it has halved in the last twenty years alone”. He stated that “free market capitalism is the greatest instrument of poverty relief that the world has ever seen”.
Arguing that capitalism needed to be free in order to achieve its goals, Sir Paul declared that “predatory behaviour” was “rife” in the US, and challenged the market dominance of firms such as Google and Meta. Attacking extensive lobbying practices in the U.S. and EU markets, Marshall outlined that “corrupt societies practise tribalism and cronyism”, and develop monopolies in their markets.
Addressing the challenges posed by markets developing, Sir Paul noted that “‘advocates of free markets … need to explain how they can deal with the disruption to our communities”, and argued that “what we have seen since the 2008 crisis to the present day may be the largest transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich since the Norman conquest”.
Presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy denounces ‘woke capitalism’
In an address to the ARC conference, presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy criticised corporate adoption of ESG values as “a threat not just to capitalism, but also to democratic self-governance… that a small group of corporate actors have the right to decide through the back door what citizens could not do through the front door.”
Speaking to an audience of 1,500 from the campaign trail in Iowa, Ramaswamy argued that “good governance means the corporation is true to its own purpose, without diluting that missive with environmental or social objectives.”
The Republican hopeful was critical of Government’s role in bringing about existing ESG policies, identifying public vehicles such as pension funds as “trying to accomplish a political agenda” rather than deliver value.
The speeches preceded a panel featuring financier Helena Morrissey, free market think tank CEO Derek Kreifels, and industry veteran Terrence Keeley, who discussed whether capital has been misallocated to ESG initiatives, and how better corporate governance can be achieved.
DAY 1 OUR SOCIAL FABRIC
NEW: Miriam Cates MP warns of fraying Western social fabric
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Miriam Cates MP declares that our social fabric is under strain
Cates, addressing over 1,500 delegates at the ARC Conference, argued that the “triplet trophies of freedom, prosperity, and happiness are more fragile than any time since the war”. Commenting on the decline in fertility rates, she said that our “covenant…is under strain”, and that the “social fabric of our neighbourhoods is unravelling”.
Addressing the challenges of integration, she stated that “the last few weeks have shattered any remaining illusions that our communities are united”, and that “a kingdom divided against itself cannot stand”. Cates further warned against the risks posed by “destabilising immigration” in a time of “declining economic prosperity”.
She reaffirmed the role of the family as “the building block of society…the unit that ensures children…are raised in the virtues they need”, and noted that “the support of extended family has weakened and loneliness has increased”.
Cates went on to criticise the inclination of parents to “shield their child from any discomfort”, and in so doing leave them ill-prepared for life. She argued that our “addiction to debt” had “robbed” them of their economic inheritance, and said that our “GDP-obsessed system demands that mothers of small children leave their child in daycare”, regardless of the best interests of the child.
She concluded by affirming that “freedom, prosperity, and happiness are not values…they may be the fruits of a successful society, but they are not its roots” and that “the true roots of Western civilisation are the pursuit of the good, the true, and the beautiful”.
Psychologist Jonathan Haidt calls for ban on social media for under-16s, backs phone-free schools
Speaking to Spectator Editor Fraser Nelson at the ARC conference, author and psychologist Jonathan Haidt argued for urgent action to address the rise in children’s mental health issues as a result of social media. “‘The Great Rewiring of Childhood happened between 2010 and 2015,” he told the conference. “But you can’t grow up in networks, you have to grow up in communities… Nobody defends this phone-based childhood. Everyone sees the problems.”
Haidt went on to propose a set of norms to curb the negative effects of social media on children including restrictions on smartphones for children before high school, a ban on social media for those under-16, and for the global expansion of phone-free schools. Haidt’s proposals come as Department for Education guidance on phone-free schools was announced by the UK Government earlier this month.
He also warned of the dangers arising from social media for Western society: “TikTok and Twitter are dangerous for our democracy, and incompatible with the kind of liberal democracy we have developed over the last 150 years.”
DAY 1 A BETTER STORY
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ARC leaders open conference
Addressing over 1,500 delegates from 71 countries, ARC’s CEO Baroness Philippa Stroud and Board member Jordan Peterson set out their vision for a better future at a landmark gathering of international leaders.
Opening the conference, Baroness Stroud said: “We’re going to debate what needs to be renewed, and identify a path forward full of strength, hope and vision… to build a community filled with people of courage and strength, that sees the opportunity of abundance, not scarcity and decline”.
Peterson outlined his vision of distributive responsibility, saying that “ARC is our movement into the future… We have the responsibility to face an uncertain future with faith and courage.” He called on international leaders to “define reality and set out the choices that people must make.”
Current and former US House Speakers address threats to the West
Speaking at ARC’s opening session, Kevin McCarthy delivered his first overseas speech since his departure as Speaker of the House, saying that “there is no alternative to western civilisation” and warning that the West needs to “stand up to Communist China, North Korea, Russia and Hamas” in reasserting its values.
The former Speaker went on to echo President Ronald Reagan’s 1982 speech to the UK Parliament: “The ultimate deterrent in the struggle that now is going on in the world will not be bombs or rockets, but a test of wills. The values we hold, the beliefs we cherish, the ideals to which we are dedicated.”
The conference also heard prerecorded remarks from McCarthy’s successor, Speaker Mike Johnson, in his first public address since winning the speakership. “Democracy can be messy, and I believe US Congress and our entire nation has emerged better… the House is back in session” he told the conference, urging the “return [of] responsibility from the Government to the citizenry.”
Former Australian Deputy PM calls for restoration of trust following referendum
The opening session was followed by a panel on a better story for the West chaired by Peterson, and hearing from former Australian Deputy PM John Anderson, historian Os Guinness and activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali.
Anderson called for the restoration of trust in the Australian democratic process following the contentious Voice referendum earlier this month: “We want to reinvigorate a citizenship that feels alienated and patronised because they are being alienated and patronised. We can draw out the better angels of our nature, and try and ensure that our democracy works again properly on the basis of restored trust.”
On the need to reiterate a shared democratic story for the West, Anderson commented: “We do not tell our own story anymore. It has left us in a state of confusion… We leave our young people today without a sense of purpose or place or direction.”
The session featured calls from each of the panellists for a return to traditional values of equality of opportunity and faith following a period of directionlessness. “The West is in considerable confusion and uncertainty,” Guinness warned. “People don’t have a sense of meaning as they don’t feel part of a great story or tradition.”
NEW: Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove slams housing financialisation | ARC conference
Speaking on the second day of the ARC conference, Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove discussed the state of the property market, criticising recent fiancialisation as “[seeing] housing being used increasingly as a tradeable asset”, and lambasting homeowners for “pulling up the drawbridge” in order to preserve the value of their properties.
Addressing 1,500 delegates from 71 countries at ARC’s inaugural conference, Gove addressed issues with capitalism, arguing that market inequalities have been exacerbated by the Bank of England’s Quantitative Easing regime inflating asset values following the Global Financial Crisis, and corporations concentrating gains “in the hands of the few” through an abuse of market power and extensive lobbying efforts.
Gove singled out big business for co-opting individuals from the ‘resentment industry’ — those who profit from manufactured grievances — to advise on ESG and DEI issues. “The DEI industry doesn’t go for diversity of thought, or genuine diversity of background,” he told the conference.
In his speech Gove broadened his critique of contemporary capitalism beyond economics, emphasising the importance of social policy. “Economics and culture are inextricably interlinked,” he said, advocating for a society which is “free of cancellation” and economically just, alongside promoting entrepreneurship.
“What we need is the Promethean spirit which grabs fire from the gods” – pursuing opportunity, & the “rabbinical spirit – in particular, that we must take inequality seriously”.
NEW: Erica Komisar calls for flexible working, family tax incentives to combat mental health epidemic | ARC Conference
Childcare expert calls for flexible working, family tax incentives to combat mental health epidemic.
“‘Our children are under the worst academic pressure that we have ever heard in history” according to psychoanalyst and parental expert Erica Komisar, who warned of a mental health epidemic in children arising from an absence in parental presence due to contemporary labour market pressures and childcare costs.
Komisar, addressing 1,500 delegates from 71 countries on the second day of the ARC conference in Greenwich, called for a series of reforms to government childcare policies as a necessary step in alleviating the mental health crisis around the world.
“Governments need to give all mothers the option to stay home for a full year, and support them with resources so they can work part-time for another two years,” she told the conference. Komisar also called for school to start later for teenagers, tax incentives for married parents, and a tax credit system incentivising parents to invest in mental health care.
The author of two books on parenting, Komisar also called on the private sector to enable new parents to spend more time with their new children: “employers have a role to play in allowing parents the space and time to be present for their children, providing options of flexible hours and hybrid working hours, encouraging career pauses to parents raising their children…as well as providing re-entry points for women.”
NEW: Former Bank of England Chief Economist Andy Haldane calls on UK Government to address low growth, regional inequalities | ARC Conference
Speaking on the second day of the ARC conference, Haldane called for the UK to localise decision-making and increase the level of private financing in a bid to address twin blights of “low growth and large regional inequalities.”
“Currently in the UK [decision-making] is both centralised and single,” Haldane told an audience of 1,500 delegates. “It needs to become localised and plural.” On the need to unlock private funding, Haldane commented that easing the pathways for private investment is needed, as “too little [money] is finding its home where it can be.”
Haldane spoke alongside Australian Shadow Treasurer Angus Taylor and Blue Labour founder Lord Maurice Glasman, in a panel discussion on the communities economically left behind hosted by academic and pollster Matt Goodwin.
Glasman advocated for increased access to capital through regional banks in order to address local inequalities.”[We need to] restore place, restore access to capital, and restore the dignity of labour,” the Labour peer said. Glasman also called for largescale education reforms to reduce income divides, advocating for half of all universities to be converted into vocational colleges.
The session featured a discussion with siblings Korie and Willie Robertson, the stars of U.S. reality show Duck Dynasty, discussing their experience growing up in a ‘flyover state’ and the importance of local relationships. “When you live in a community you truly live in community. We can have different opinions and different views and we can come around the table and love and respect one another,” Korie said.
NEW: Shadow Minister for Indigenous Australians Jacinta Nampijinpa Price heralds referendum as “turning point” for Australia | ARC Conference
In a speech to the ARC Conference in London in the wake of the Voice referendum result earlier this month, Price called the vote “a turning point in our nation, in Australia.”
Addressing 1,500 delegates Price said that the vote “has emboldened everyday Australians to believe that it is perfectly OK to be who you are. To be proud of who you are as an individual.”
The Liberal Party politician criticised a Yes campaign that has “sought to divide us along the lines of race”, and had attempted to remove agency for indigenous Australians, sending the message that “it was the responsibility of white Australia to empower [indigenous Australians] through our constitution.”
Setting out a vision for the party’s approach to social policy ahead of a likely 2025 General Election, Price said that “the way forward from here is no more separatism, no more dividing us along the lines of race, no more political correctness, no more identity politics… recognising that we don’t need another to empower us. We can do that ourselves, and we can do it very well.”
Price said the result has created “hope and unity”, and “emboldened everyday Australians to understand that it is perfectly okay to be who you are.”
Celebrity Canadian author Jordan Peterson has launched The Alliance for Responsible Citizenship (ARC), a new conference that he has branded as a counterweight to the World Economic Forum’s annual Davos conference.
However, there’s one small problem with Dr Peterson’s initiative.
Many of the individuals he’s recruited to join the effort are currently or formerly associated with the WEF itself! And others who are not directly associated with Davos have a record of promoting the very same disastrous ideological dictates advanced by the WEF network.
Just as Dr Peterson was slow to the draw on Covid hysteria, he doesn’t seem to understand why advocates for human freedom dislike the World Economic Forum. Sure, Klaus Schwab and the gang are freakishly unlikeable statist sociopaths, but it is their top-down model of “governance,” coupled with their dictates upon society, that makes the WEF model so nefarious.
By seemingly copying the Davos model and rebranding it as a counter WEF initiative, the counter WEF has become just another invite-only conference of hand picked “experts,” vetted by like-minded individuals, who retain elite status within their exclusive, closed off networks.
This isn’t the path forward.
Humanity certainly doesn’t need an alternative group of mutually credentialing “experts” to dictate to humanity how they should be living their lives.
It’s called ARC, alluding to Noah’s Ark and the arc of a person’s life – and maybe even to the Ark of the Covenant.
Here is their launch announcement.
Quotes from that announcement:
“New International Alliance Announces Major Conference to Enhance Global Prosperity, Challenge Declinism and Revitalize our Understanding of Human Flourishing”
“The ‘Alliance for Responsible Citizenship’ (ARC) will provide an alternative to “the claim that decline is inevitable.””
“The Alliance for Responsible Citizenship (ARC) is being established as an international community with a vision for a better world where every citizen can prosper, contribute and flourish.”
The website is here. At the top, it says:
We are seeking answers to some of our day’s most fundamental questions, grounded in our core belief that everyone has intrinsic worth and something to contribute, and humanity has an extraordinary capacity for innovation and ingenuity.
Despite all this good news, this undeniable progress, a shadow has emerged, an adversarial challenge to this state and process of expanding abundance; an emergent crisis of meaning and purpose. God is dead, or so the story goes, and the future is uncertain. Five centuries of ascendant reductionist Enlightenment rationality have revealed that this starkly objective world lacks all intrinsic meaning. A century and a half or more of corrosive cultural criticism has undermined our understanding of and faith in the traditions necessary to unite and guide us.
In the midst of this existential chaos, the false idol of apocalyptic ideology inevitably beckons.
We find ourselves, in consequence, inundated by a continual onslaught of ominous, demoralizing messages, most particularly in the form of environmental catastrophism; the insistence that we confront a severe and immediately pending emergency of biological destruction, causally associated with our degenerate social structures and their excess and destructive industrial production.
The narrative generating these messages, quasi-religious in its structure and intensity, paints a dismal existential picture: the individual is a rapacious, predatory, parasitical consumer; society—even the little society of the family—an oppressive, tyrannical despoiler; and nature, herself, a hapless, fragile, virginal victim.
A deep, worldwide, social, economic and environmental revolution is therefore allegedly at hand; those who dare suggest otherwise are blind, if not malevolent, and must be silenced.
The results of such theories? The consequences of such proclamations?
The increasing and increasingly compelled imposition of severe, involuntary limits to material abundance and growth; the resultant artificially-inflated prices, particularly for energy, that most truly punish the poor.
The fraying of our social fabric into a chaos of alienated polarization; simultaneously, and in predictable lockstep, the extension of reach and control over even the most private details of our lives by increasingly gigantic and centralized organizations, governmental and corporate alike.
The spread, particularly among the young, of a demoralizing and socially-divisive doubt and hopelessness.
We have therefore initiated the Alliance for Responsible Citizenship (ARC), a new movement of hopeful vision, local, national and international in its aim and scope, aimed at the collective, voluntary establishment of a maximally attractive route forward. The ARC will open itself up to widespread public membership, as rapidly and extensively as is practically manageable, at as low a cost as is possible and desirable, so that everyone interested can aid in voluntarily formulating this story and strategy, and to discuss how its implementation might be encouraged.
The sheer complexity of the world, and the genuine diversity of individual ability and preference means that distributed decision-making is a necessity, not a luxury: no elite technocracy is capable of knowing best and then determining how we should all move forward as individuals and communities.
It follows from this that policy requiring compulsion, let alone force, rather than the voluntary assent of the participants, is bad policy.
We offer for the contemplation of those potentially interested in our invitation six fundamental questions, the answers to which might form the basis for a vision that is voluntarily compelling, motivating, stabilizing and uniting.
We at ARC do not believe that humanity is necessarily and inevitably teetering on the brink of apocalyptic disaster. We do not believe that we are beings primarily motivated by lust for power and desire to dominate. We do not regard ourselves or our fellow citizens as destructive forces, living in an alien relationship to the pristine and pure natural world.
We posit, instead, that men and women of faith and decisiveness, made in the image of God, can arrange their affairs with care and attention so that abundance and opportunity could be available for all.
Those who present a vision of inevitable catastrophe in the absence of severely enforced material privation are not wise seers of the inevitable future, but forlorn prisoners of their own limited, faithless imaginations. Those who scheme to lead using terror as a motivator and force as a cudgel reveal themselves by definition unfit for the job.
We hope to encourage the development of an alternative pathway uphill, out of both tyranny and the desert, stabilizing, unifying and compelling to men and women of sound judgement and free will.
Welcome aboard the ARC.
I intent to formulate my own answers to the above questions, which I will post on the ARC website survey page and on this blog.