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Thread: The Madness of Rob Wolf page

  1. #1
    Lewis's Avatar
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    The Madness of Rob Wolf

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    Meant as a pun on Ludovico Ariosto's classic of renaissance humour the Orlando Furisoso. I don't know what that would be in Italian—perhaps Roberto Furioso?

    I quite like him, and I certainly don't think he's mad, but it's a fun title.

    Anyway, there he was in this week's episode clanking round in his armour, looking for enemies to slay. As i say I like him, but boy was he aggressive this week. Gibes at people who've given him advice on his sound quality or who do cross-fit in the wrong way were only the beginning.

    I recalled hearing Jimmy Moore in conversation with Chris Masterjohn and how they'd both said that the Paleo people, the WAPF crowd, and the low-carb community had so much in common that it was best to concentrate what they agreed on rather than worry about small differences of emphasis. None of that for Rob—at least not this week.

    Maybe I misunderstood, but he seemed to be saying that the WAPF had never really helped anyone, and the Paleo Diet got results. This was combined with gibes about "grains" of course. But when did Sally Fallon ever say that everyone had to eat these? IIRC, on the back of Nourishing Traditions it actually gives as one of the popular health misconceptions that wholegrains are necessarily good for you. What she says is to use them very much in moderation and preferably to take steps to deal with the antinutrients in them if you do eat them. She also throughout the book gives substitutions for people who have specific allergies—if you're allergic to whey use lemon juice instead; that kind of thing. As for not helping people, how would he know? Did he ring Sally and ask how many thankful emails the foundation has had? Does he know how many people have passed through the door of Dr. Thomas Cowan's family practice? Then there's the GAPS protocol, which has links to the WAPF, being a "modified" version of the "traditional diet":

    ... the modified traditional diet, to start healing the gut and restoring the micro-ecology in our GI tract.
    Treating Eczema - Weston A Price Foundation

    Does Rob claim to know how many people have been treated in Dr. Campbell-McBride's clinic, and that this doesn't amount to much? And she's working with people with serious psychological/gastrointestinal problems, including autism.

    I'm not sure Rob is any longer happy with the low-carb community either. Previously, his advice on just about everything would be something like: "Do that whole low-carb Paleo shtick gig thing". Now that high carb is becoming more fashionable in "Paleo" circles it's become the Paleo shtick gig thing simpliciter. I thought I caught a couple of digs at low-carb in other places and Rob when mentioning the people he'd been glad to meet at the recent conference pointedly didn't mention the person very prominent in the low-carb world who'd been there—someone who'd been kind enough to be interviewed on his show recently. Rob did mention that stable isotope analysis of prehistoric human bone shows that people were eating "like top predators"—but that was only in the context of doing down a vegetarian. I know vegetarians can be tempting targets, but here we went from bad to worse.

    Not content with talking down the WAPF, cold-shouldering the low-carb community, and kneeing the vegetarians in the groin, Rob then went after the whole of Indian civilization. It turns out the mouthy and ill-informed vegetarian was a yoga teacher. She was also, we were told, from Boston. You might think aggressiveness and self-righteousness from an American woman was (if not purely a reflection on that individual) a reflection on modern America. Not for Rob. For Rob it was Indian civilization that was to blame. He starts talking about Hinduism and the grotesque practice of suttee (for which, incidentally he gave a very unconvincing rationalization). As if there were a necessary connection between suttee and vegetarianism! What we call Hindusim is, in any case, a name for a bewildering variety of practices and beliefs—from harmless forest ascetics to child temple-prostitution, from philosophical monotheism to folk-religion. And as if ascetic practices, such as abstaining from certain foodstuffs, were not an ancient part of Indian religion, including among the Jains and sects that don't even exist now such as the Ajivikas. Does he imagine all these people practised suttee? If people want to withdraw from the world, wear cast-off clothing, and eat innutritious food and not much of that, I've no quarrel with them. I do have problems with people saying that a normal healthy diet is immoral—but that's Boston's problem, not India's.

    As I say, I like him, but they could have called that podcast "Rob Wolf lashes out in all directions".

  2. #2
    spakesneaker's Avatar
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    I didn't listen to this but hearing your recap of it makes me lose any desire to read/listen to anything of his again. Suttee was (and is) rare, and playing into the supposed meme of it being a common thing (and all indian women being oh-so oppressed) pisses me off.

    Also as it's practiced in the U.S., yoga is pretty much entirely stripped of any spirituality, so I don't see what the need to even link it to Hinduism is. although people in india do have even more vegetarian-worship than americans do, and even more frequently think that meat is the source of all health/weight problems, unfortunately.

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    For those like me not in the know: Satī (suttee) was a religious funeral practice among some Indian communities in which a recently widowed woman either voluntarily or by use of force and coercion would have immolated herself on her husband’s funeral pyre. The practice is rare and has been outlawed in India since 1829.

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    iniQuity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carlh View Post
    For those like me not in the know: Satī (suttee) was a religious funeral practice among some Indian communities in which a recently widowed woman either voluntarily or by use of force and coercion would have immolated herself on her husband’s funeral pyre. The practice is rare and has been outlawed in India since 1829.

  5. #5
    Apex Predator's Avatar
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    He probably got that from Cordain- along with most of his worldview. Eh. Take the useful and ignore the rest.

  6. #6
    Jen AlcesAlces's Avatar
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    I get your point, that he did sound harsh, but then he always does. Not saying that's bad; it is what it is. I agree with him that the vegetarian moral preaching is misguided, but his connection between that and suttee was definitely reaching.

    Frankly, the previous podcast was my favorite that he's ever done... the one where he talked with Mark Sisson & Matt Lalonde. I think all three of them sounded sensible and exactly what I am hoping for the future of the paleo/primal community. Hope you listened to that one too...

  7. #7
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    I think the "lashing out" as the OP called it, is more out of frustration. The Sati thing was more to make a point that hinduism or any religion for that matter making decisions about what people should or shouldn't eat for health is a bogus practice. Overall I think he has some personal issues with the self-rightous vegetarians that say vegetarianism and or veganism is the morally superior way. I have my own experience with this and frankly I understand why he's all amped up about it. In the end it's his podcast so he can say whatever he wants. personally I like his rants, makes for a better show.

  8. #8
    Sanctus Real's Avatar
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    I like Robb Wolf, but I've come to understand not to pay too much attention to his personal beliefs. I used to get his Facebook feed, but he posted all sorts of opinions that, though I agreed with some of them and I feel he has the right to his opinions, weren't really the reason I originally subscribed to his feed. He tends to go off on tangents about all manner of things not related to fitness and nutrition. But that's all I really want to hear from him about. I don't care if he's a Libertarian who is voting for Ron Paul, lol.

    I think it's just that he has an audience that is really listening, and he feels free to climb on his soapbox whenever the mood strikes him. Entertaining for some, not so much for others. But, hey, it's a free country; he chooses what to say, and I choose whether to listen.
    Motherhood: When changing from pj pants to yoga pants qualifies as 'getting dressed'.

  9. #9
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    I was looking at pictures of the annual low carb cruise. Those people look awful! Must be all the low-carb Frankenfoods and Pepsi Zeros and Monster Zeros they throw back. I'll never forget when I first started coming here, I saw that Sisson had a link to Livin' La Vida Low Carb prominently displayed on the main page. I went there and spent some time looking at dude's food log and was appalled by what I saw (and perplexed that MDA would endorse that). Maybe Robb is seeing the same thing I do.

  10. #10
    Donnn's Avatar
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    Let's not forget that Robb gets to travel to the paleo in Cordain's time machine, so he has special knowledge. I hear he will be offering rides at AHS12.

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