193 episodes

Very Bad Wizards is a podcast featuring a philosopher (Tamler Sommers) and a psychologist (David Pizarro), who share a love for ethics, pop culture, and cognitive science, and who have a marked inability to distinguish sacred from profane. Each podcast includes discussions of moral philosophy, recent work on moral psychology and neuroscience, and the overlap between the two.

Very Bad Wizards Tamler Sommers & David Pizarro

    • Philosophy
    • 4.8, 291 Ratings

Very Bad Wizards is a podcast featuring a philosopher (Tamler Sommers) and a psychologist (David Pizarro), who share a love for ethics, pop culture, and cognitive science, and who have a marked inability to distinguish sacred from profane. Each podcast includes discussions of moral philosophy, recent work on moral psychology and neuroscience, and the overlap between the two.

    Episode 191: All the Rage

    Episode 191: All the Rage

    A lotta anger out there right now, but does it do more harm than good? Is anger counterproductive, an obstacle to progress? And even when it is, can anger be appropriate anway? We talk about two excellent articles by the philosopher Amia Srinivasan criticizing anger's critics. Plus we express some counterproductive anger of our own at the IDWs response to the protests.  
    Sponsored By:
    The Great Courses Plus: Never stop learning. Pursue your passion. Quench your curiosity. Embark on an educational endeavor. Watch thousands of streaming videos on hundreds of subjects. Promo Code: wizardsSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Would Politics Be Better Off Without Anger? | The NationWelcomeSrinivasan, A. (2018) The Aptness of Anger, Journal of Political Philosophy. Reprinted in the Philosopher’s Annual.

    • 1 hr 36 min
    Episode 190: We Pod. We Pod-Cast. We Podcast. (Frankfurt’s “On B******t”)

    Episode 190: We Pod. We Pod-Cast. We Podcast. (Frankfurt’s “On B******t”)

    David and Tamler talk about police violence, the protests, and Harry Frankfurt's journal article turned bestseller ”On B******t." Plus we dive into a comic masterpiece of late capitalism: the University of Oregon's brand guidelines.
    Sponsored By:
    The Great Courses Plus: Never stop learning. Pursue your passion. Quench your curiosity. Embark on an educational endeavor. Watch thousands of streaming videos on hundreds of subjects. Promo Code: wizardsSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Brand and Style | University CommunicationsThe Black Goat – A podcast about doing scienceTwo Psychologists Four Beers Episode 46: Very Good Men (with Very Bad Wizards)Break Music: Seven Minutes by peezOn B******t - WikipediaFrankfurt, H. (2005) On B******t. Princeton University Press.

    • 2 hrs 1 min
    Episode 189: The Anality of Evil (Freud's "Civilization and its Discontents")

    Episode 189: The Anality of Evil (Freud's "Civilization and its Discontents")

    David and Tamler dive into Sigmund Freud’s world of unconscious drives, death instincts, and thwarted incestuous urges in his classic text “Civilization and its Discontents.” If society has made so much progress, why are human beings perpetually dissatisfied? Can religion help us or is it a big part of the problem? What’s really going on when you piss on a fire to put it out? Also: how seriously should we take Freud today given some of his wackier ideas? And is he a psychologist, a philosopher, or something else entirely?


    Plus we select the finalists from a huge list of suggested topics for the Patreon listener-selected episode!
    Sponsored By:
    BetterHelp: You deserve to be happy. BetterHelp online counseling is there for you. Connect with your professional counselor in a safe and private online
    environment. Promo Code: VBWSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    A**l retentiveness - WikipediaAnal expulsiveness - WikipediaPsychosexual development - WikipediaCivilization and Its Discontents - Wikipedia

    • 1 hr 37 min
    Episode 188: Conceptual Mummies (Nietzsche's "Twilight of the Idols")

    Episode 188: Conceptual Mummies (Nietzsche's "Twilight of the Idols")

    Socrates was ugly and tired of life, so he made a tyrant of reason. Philosophers are mummies who hate the body and the senses. Reason is a tricky old woman. Morality is a misunderstanding. Kant is a sneaky Christian. And don't even get Nietzsche started on "free will" or the "self" - just excuse for priests to punish people, a hangman's metaphysics. David and Tamler dive into Friedrich Nietzsche's Twilight of the Idols, a fascinating set of aphorisms brimming with passion, provocation, questions without answers.


    Plus, a professor is sanctioned for sex talk with his students - fair or coddling foul?
    Sponsored By:
    BetterHelp: You deserve to be happy. BetterHelp online counseling is there for you. Connect with your professional counselor in a safe and private online
    environment. Promo Code: VBWSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    George Mason University investigation faults professor for sexual talk with students in class and a hot tub, court records show - The Washington PostNietzsche, F. "Twilight of the Idols" [amazon.com affiliate link] — This is the version we read, but there's a cheaper kindle version on Amazon if you search (at least on the US website). Twilight of the Idols - Wikipedia

    • 1 hr 42 min
    Episode 187: More Zither

    Episode 187: More Zither

    With a global pandemic and a collapsing economy upon us, it's time to ask ourselves some tough questions. Sex robots or platonic love robots - what are you more excited for? If you walked in on your partner with one of them, which would make you more jealous? Are you male or female? Can evolutionary psychology explain sex-linked preferences for sensitive, empathetic Alexas? We then dive into the shadowy echo-filled streets of post-war Vienna - and talk about one of our favorite movies, a true noir classic: The Third Man.
    Support Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Frontiers | Friends, Lovers or Nothing: Men and Women Differ in Their Perceptions of Sex Robots and Platonic Love Robots | PsychologyBreak Music: Framed Your Eyes by peezThe Third Man - WikipediaAllied-occupied Austria - WikipediaDutch angle - Wikipedia

    • 1 hr 40 min
    Episode 186: The One with Peter Singer

    Episode 186: The One with Peter Singer

    The legendary Peter Singer joins us to talk about effective altruism, AI, animal welfare, esoteric morality, future Tuesday indifference, and more. I mean, it’s Peter freakin’ Singer - what more do we need to say? Plus, the explosive ‘one or two spaces after a period' debate: has science resolved it?
    Special Guest: Peter Singer.
    Sponsored By:
    GiveWell: Givewell searches for the charities that save or improve lives the most per dollar. Consider a donation this holiday season--your dollar goes a lot further than you might think!Support Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Are two spaces better than one? | Butterick’s Practical TypographyRappers, sorted by the size of their vocabulary [thanks to listener Kevin Litman-Navarro]Peter Singer - Wikipediade Lazari-Radek, K., & Singer, P. (2017). Utilitarianism: A very short introduction. Oxford University Press.Singer, P. (2010). The life you can save: How to do your part to end world poverty. Random House Incorporated."A Gadfly for the Greater Good" (Tamler's interview of Singer in his "A Very Bad Wizard" book)"A Very Bad Wizard" by Tamler Sommers [amazon affiliate link]

    • 1 hr 29 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
291 Ratings

291 Ratings

Sottovoce 3 ,

Still my favourite podcast

Entertaining, interesting, witty, irreverent, thought provoking, silly. What more could you ever want? Oh, and it’s sufficiently repugnant as well.

LeeScratchMerry ,

Dave and Tamler fizzle my philosophical nizzle like no one else

xx

mijagu ,

Funny, smart, thoughtful, insightful, repugnant

.

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