Bertrand Russel > Nieztche > Socrates
Not all philosophers have Hume’s reputation of politeness. Nietzsche once called Socrates ‘degenerated’.
Nietzsche himself had his fair share of criticism coming from a distinguished celebrity. Russell called him cruel, cunning, ruthless, concerning only with his own power. (and more. See here (1:04)).
In the dispute between Nietzsche’s and Socrates’ ideas I tend to stay with Socrates’, though Nietzsche has presented us many propositions worth of serious thinking.
In Russell versus Nietzsche, in this particular context that triggered Russell’s criticism, I tend to remain by Nietzsche’s side.
The way I currently interpret and correlate the main ideas of the traditional Western philosophers leaves me no other choice.
I believe there is some incoherence or maybe naivety in Russell’s acts and thoughts in his attitude towards Nietzsche.
Why on Earth an atheist and materialist such as Russell and Nietzsche should act differently from pursuing his own power? Unless, of course, as a marketing tool for showing or pretending concern for the individuals who belong to his social group in order to gain something in return.
As a materialist person you may act like this at personal level but as a philosopher it is your duty to tell what you really think like Nietzsche did. Philosophy is not a place to promote yourself for your social group.
Pacifism and materialism are not easily compatible beliefs when any dispute is present, that is, always, especially when the agent does not believe in absolute values.
For any superman living to the fullest will legitimately smash the weak and wage war whenever it is a condition for him to continue as a superman or a necessary measure to fulfill his personal ambitions.
That’s how nature is and how Darwinian evolution – accredited by Russell - is supposed to be. After all for a materialist atheist a human being is ultimately a machine, an over complex robot, a secondary phenomenon to the accidental interaction of atoms. Thus in many ways killing or exploiting a human is the same as doing it to a car or computer.
By the way, Russell is the most incoherent philosopher I have in my list of favorites. He had an incredible ability to keep opposite beliefs together.
To be totally honest I am yet to be convinced that Russell is not somehow an overrated thinker when it comes to subject matters other than logic.
Knowing logic does not imply knowing facts.