Total Pageviews

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Molyneux’s Moral depravity reaches a new low

Stefan Molyneux’s business is to influence young adults to leave their families in a most destructive way and then collect their donations to FDR. This latest episode pretty much removes any room for doubt as to who he really is. Here goes:

One of the occasional by products of a young adult engagement with FDR is a rejection of academic activity. There are lots of permutations of the damage. Sometimes members spend so much time on the boards, that their studies suffer. Other times, the FDR members just drop out of college completely.

Recently on a chat room, a donator, who had dropped out of college as a result of his encounter with Freedomain Radio, wrote that he was thinking of returning to college. The donator was beginning to notice that, without a degree, there was little chance for advancement. The future looks bleak. He was thinking he should go back and get his degree. So what is the right advice for this person? Well Moly has two degrees (at least he says he does). Now it is true, Moly has failed at pretty much every attempt to use those degrees. And along with his many other problems, he seems to deeply resent how academia has rejected him. But you would think he could see past this resentment to offer some sound advice to a donator who respects him and is at a life cross road. This is a young person who was beginning to realize he had made a mistake by dropping out of college. He realized he needed to pull himself together and at least get that initial Bachelors Degree. Moly was faced with a legitimate opportunity to do the right thing. The donator could get a degree and build a life with an upside. A life that would provide options. A chance to get the education. A chance to get the degree that unlocks the potential for a rich and satisfying life. Seems obvious enough doesn’t it.

But not for Moly. Moly knew that pursuing an education might be distracting enough that the member might start missing their monthly donation. Moly kicked into gear. He asked the donator what they wanted to do. The programmed response came back. “I want to be a philosopher.”

Moly responded with his own programmed response. “You don’t need a piece of paper to do that.”

There you have it. Moly is advising a follower to NOT get a degree. He is suggesting that someone can be a “Philosopher” or pursue philosophy as a livelihood without a degree. Please let the level of depravity sink in. Rather than risk a modest monthly donation, Moly is advising a young adult to NOT get an education. And because of that advice from Moly, the poor donator will likely allow let that glimmer of a chance to get the degree fade away. The donator, who reached out to Moly for advice, will stay in that dead end job.

Now someone from FDR is going to respond to this post. It will be another high school freshman philosophy comment on freedom and such. So in anticipation of that, let’s take a moment. Yes, we all know the stories of Bill Gates and other famous success stories of those who had a burning ambition that transcended the need for a college education. We also all know those stories are remarkable exactly because they are statistically rare. Education is the most precious possession anyone can have. No one can take it from you. Its value lasts a life time. So here is the likely reality that will result from Moly’s despicable advice. What does it really mean to forgo that degree?

Well for starters, the donator thinks he is in a good state. He is working. He likes the job. He is paying his bills (sort of). This is OK. Life is not that bad. He is talented enough to avoid getting fired. He will even likely be a model employee. But life will go on. Things will change. Events will happen. His talent will not save him from the inevitable layoffs, re-organizations, bankruptcies or an argument with your boss. When these happen, he will be out of work. Or maybe worse. He will keep that job for many years to come. Of course, with each passing year, his lack of education will hurt more and more, because with each job set back, (or maybe even each job opportunity) he will have been one more year as an experienced hourly worker. He will NOT be someone who has experience in a profession that required a degree. Without a degree, he will have to endure an endless series of mind numbing schedules, tasks, boredoms, unexpected expenses, and thoughtless managers. He will have to there on time; and not leave early without permission. He will live a life from paycheck to paycheck. Maybe a promotion to “assistant manager” some day. Maybe a cost of living increase. Maybe at some point, he wants to break out and start his own business. Any funding source needed to start a new business will prefer that he have a degree. He doesn't get over the hump. He stays where he is. It is the life of quiet desperation. He won’t notice that slowly and relentlessly his energy and ambition to succeed beyond his current state will drain away. Then one day, when life has beaten the last vestige of ambition out of him, his potential will be finally and utterly lost forever.

All because at the key moment; when a word of encouragement was needed, Moly decided it was more important to secure a $20 per month revenue stream. Moly is hoping against hope, that the donator doesn’t notice this. Moly hopes the donator will be content in the belief that maintaining his status as a Philosopher King (or silver, gold, diamond) donator is enough to follow his dream of philosophy in the real world of FDR.

So here is my advice to the donator. Pay attention to things. You are responsible for your life. It is very likely that you will regret forgoing your degree for as long as you live. You can keep fiddling with FDR if you wish, but give yourself enough self respect to make your own decisions. Or to put it another way: Please notice that the man you are listening to, has a livelihood that depends on duping you into destroying your life. Do whatever you have to do to get that degree. Pick up the phone and call your college advisor. Call the admissions office. Call financial aid. Do whatever you have to do. Get a loan. Go back to your parents and ask them help. And get your life back on track.

For those who wonder what Stefan Molyneux is all about, this pretty much covers it. Stay away from the guy. Or if some sort of curiosity draws you to the site, look out for his programmed greeters in the chat rooms. I enourage you to download his free books as much as you want. They are worth every penny. Whatever you do, don’t give him a dime. Most of all, don't let him get so far into your head that you do self destructive things.


  1. If Moly had some foresight surely it would be more lucrative for him to encourage these young folk to get a degree, surely the donations would be better in the long run.

  2. Overly harsh reality check:

    If you want to be a philosopher, and you are asking Stefan Molyneux for advice, then it's probably getting close to being time to find a new dream. As it is, there are more people who want to be philosophers than the market can support. Many of them are really, really good. If you don't see what's wrong with Molyneux's arguments, in spite of widely publicized, rigorous discussions of those problems, then you probably don't have what it takes to compete with them.

    As a (presumably atheist) libertarian interested in studying (presumably political) philosophy, it makes sense to try to go to the University of Arizona to learn from Schmidtz and Gaus, the University of Virginia to learn from Lomasky and Simmons, the University of Wisconsin to learn from Lester Hunt, Tulane University to learn from Eric Mack, Brown University to learn from Jason Brennan, Auburn University to learn from Roderick Long, West Virginia University to learn from Daniel Shapiro, the University of San Diego to learn from Matt Zwolinski, the College of New Jersey to learn from James Stacy Taylor, Ohio University in Athens to learn from Mark LeBar...I could probably go on. The point is, there are MANY options out there. Learning your craft from a self-published web site manager whose primary philosophical audience doesn't know anything about philosophy should not be one of them.

  3. Too bad that in real life doors don't open without that piece of paper.

  4. An irony is that the type of person who does becomes successful without higher education has to be self-directed and focused. Chosing a man whom I perceive to be a self-deluded failure as a mentor and then being overly dependent on his hypocritical advice does not indicate the above.


  5. "Too bad that in real life doors don't open without that piece of paper" -- that is not necessarily true. I am finishing a degree in Computer Science, but I have been working in real computer companies and freelancing and... paying my bills with no problem. There are many successful cases, not only the bill gates, but more modest. You do not hear about them very much because they manage small companies, but still can live comfortably. I am not saying do not go to college, but for an education you do not need a degree, you need passion and curiosity :)