Dave Rubin and Richard Dawkins at the 92nd street Y

Reader Michael called my attention to this 52-minute video of Richard Dawkins and Dave Rubin conversing at the famous 92nd Street YMCA in New York City. I’ve watched only 30 minutes over lunch, but it covers a lot of topics: his deplatforming by the Berkeley Radio station, censorship and deplatforming in general, Richard’s new essay collection (Science in the Soul), the best way to popularize science, what areas of science Dawkins finds fascinating, the source of morality, the malfeasance of Trump and the dethroning of “truth”, and so on.

22 Comments

  1. scottoest
    Posted August 9, 2017 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Sigh – I wish Richard would have given his precious time to someone other than Dave Rubin for an interview. I’d love to see what kind of interesting conversation he could have with a person like Eiynah.

    Rubin is just embarrassing on Twitter these days – both his tweets, and the “friends” he chooses to keep company with.

    At any rate, Dawkins is always interesting, so I’ll probably still give this a watch later.

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted August 9, 2017 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

      @scottoest I don’t get it – should Rubin be shunned because he has conversations with people you don’t approve of? In reverse chronological order over the past four months, he’s conversed with:

      Richard Dawkins, Katie Hopkins, Jack Conte, Bill Whittle, Mike Munger, Eric Weinstein, Laci Green, Andrew Klavan, Dennis Prager, Thaddeus Russell, Maajid Nawaz, Peter Boghossian, Sargon of Akkad, Tim Pool, Rabbi Wolpe, Jason Whitlock, Aron Flam, Antonia Okafor, Abby Hall, Tristan Harris, Brigitte Gabriel, Ayan Hirsi Ali, Jordan Peterson, Brandon Turner, Austin Petersen.

      Of those people I find Katie Hopkins the most teeth grindingly awful, but I listened in the spirit of Know Your Enemy [Sun Tzu & others]

      Please provide examples of his “embarrassing” tweets & “embarrassing” ‘friends’

      • Craw
        Posted August 9, 2017 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

        “but I listened”

        So you too are tainted.

        /s

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 9, 2017 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

          LOL

      • scottoest
        Posted August 9, 2017 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

        I didn’t say he should be “shunned”, because he “talks to people I don’t approve of”. That’s an awfully in-depth strawman you’ve erected with my face on it.

        I said I wish Dawkins would have spent his time talking to someone else, and gave an example of someone I think he could have a far more interesting conversation with, than Dave Rubin – a guy who is a near-cipher as an interlocutor, unless he’s offering his now-standard guffaws about the authoritarian left.

        As for Twitter, I’m not in a position right now to mine for tweets unfortunately.

        My metric for Rubin’s awfulness has never been “does he bring on guests I disagree with?”. I actively seek out thoughtful articles and interviews I disagree with. I was a subscriber to Rubin’s channel for several months, and appreciated some of the under-heard voices he brought on.

        • scottoest
          Posted August 9, 2017 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

          As for embarrassing friends, let’s go with the low hanging fruit and start with Cernovich.

          • Michael Fisher
            Posted August 9, 2017 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

            Are they friends? If so – so what?

            Your original comment was like this: embarrassing “friends”, which I took to mean he twitter ‘follows’ or is a ‘follower’ or he’s ‘liked’ something. I guess “friends” means friends – or something…

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 9, 2017 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

          Thank you for the clarification – I read your original comment as a whole & it seems to be driving in the direction of what I described. So now I know better.

          Pity you can’t dig up a couple of examples of embarrassing tweets & explain why they are that.

          Guffaws are annoying – I agree there

      • Posted August 9, 2017 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

        Gad Saad is an embarrassing friend. Milo is an embarrassing friend. Denis Prager is an embarrassing friend. Alex Jones is an embarrassing friend. Any time he tries to be funny is an embarrassing tweet, for example “Wanna get pizza after? Regular pizza, not Alt-right Nazi pizza.” Every time he makes excuses for Trump and essentially says, “I don’t think he’s actually done anything worth criticizing” it’s an embarrassing tweet. And as for “teeth grindingly awful,” Dave’s opinion of Katie Hopkins was “Really loved this chat. Almost like you gotta get to know someone instead of just hearing what people say about them!” He sounds like a fan.

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted August 9, 2017 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

          I remember this from a year ago [inc the comments, you’re there], so I know what you mean: https://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2016/08/18/dave-rubins-choice-for-u-s-president/

          I get value from the guests, even if it’s just to discover how wanky or dishonest. I think Rubin isn’t as probing or as critical as I’d like, I don’t think he’s insightful nor knowledgeable particularly, but on the other hand his relaxed style leaves plenty of space for the guests to paint their own picture & reveal their ‘colours’ – a big plus.

          I’m not bothered about him being matey with a few deplorable types. He covers a range & I’m guessing there’s plenty who choose not to appear because his guest list ruffles their feathers.

          I rather enjoy Gad Saad too 🙂

          As Osgood said: “Well, nobody’s perfect!” [Some Like It Hot – 1959]

          • Posted August 9, 2017 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

            My problem with Rubin these days is not so much his show and interviews (although I don’t much like that either), but his Twitter feed. He is extremely one sided on Twitter. He consistently criticizes “The Left,” and rarely if ever criticizes “The Right.” He jokes around with and defends some pretty horrible people there, and he never criticizes Trump. On a Reddit AMA he actually said that Trump hasn’t really done anything that deserves criticism. He also once said something like, “There’s a necessary place for Alex’s Jones Infowars in The New Media.” Alex Jones encouraged people to phone up and harass the parents of children murdered in the Newtown shooting. I can’t shrug that off. I find Rubin to be disgusting, and that Alex Jones comment is exhibit A.

    • Rasmo carenna
      Posted August 10, 2017 at 1:51 am | Permalink

      At some point I followed both Rubin and Eiynah. Now I am no longer interested in either one of them (yes, Eiynah has disappointed me too, so I don’t think it would have been more interesting with her).
      Just my opinion.

  2. Posted August 9, 2017 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    I attended the program last night since I live in NYC. It was short, sweet and very good to see Dawkins in excellent spirits. His intelligence, memory and wit remain razor sharp.

  3. Posted August 9, 2017 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    So, now we’re wanting to deplatform Professor Dawkins from speaking on certain shows with certain individuals?! Richard Dawkins should speak anywhere, everywhere, to whomever he wishes. As I’ve said before, any time he speaks within driving range of where I live in the northwest, I will be there health permitting.

    • Posted August 9, 2017 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

      I assume this comment is a reply to Scottoest? (Forgive and ignore me if I’m wrong.) How is saying, ” I wish he would’ve given his precious time to person A instead of person B” deplatforming him?

  4. BobTerrace
    Posted August 9, 2017 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    I would rather talk about what Richard Dawkins said and not to whom he said it. There was very little new said here by Richard that we haven’t heard many times. The de-platforming and the actions of the regressive left to suppress free speech were the newer areas of discussion and his thoughts on these fall in line with what has been posted here on WEIT.

  5. Randy schenck
    Posted August 9, 2017 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Very good discussion and Richard Dawkins is always fun to listen to. He quoted several including George Carlin and even got out the phrase – Goat herders guide to the Galaxy.

  6. sang1ee
    Posted August 9, 2017 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    Dawkins is looking good. Hope his health keeps up.

    • Posted August 9, 2017 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

      From having done a conversation with him like this one recently, and spending several hours beforehand chatting with him (and inquiring about his health), I think he’s in pretty damn good shape. There are no aftereffects of the stroke save some twitching in his hand. And if there were problems his doctors wouldn’t let him go jetting around the world again.

  7. rickflick
    Posted August 9, 2017 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

    Good interview. I’ve heard many of Dawkins’s answers before but he makes them always fresh.

  8. Posted August 9, 2017 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

    Thanks! I’ll watch. Just got the audiobook of Science in the Soul – I feel the call of a long-haul train trip to properly enjoy these treats.

  9. bgporter
    Posted August 10, 2017 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    One editing quibble — the 92Y is not a YMCA, it’s a YMHA — from their About page: “As a proudly Jewish organization, 92Y enthusiastically welcomes and reaches out to people of all ages, races, faiths and backgrounds while embracing Jewish values like learning and self-improvement, ”

    https://www.92y.org/about


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