Lightning-like insights reveal truths of the gender war

Summary: Some social issues are mind-bendingly complex, requiring books to describe their essence. A very few are illuminated by insights like bolts of lightning. See these two quotes doing that for the gender war. The first is familiar to those paying attention. The second is stunning, obvious, important — yet oddly unknown. It might change how you see masculinity.

Lightening held in a hand
© Nadiyatess | Dreamstime.

A pure statement of third-wave feminism

“When looking for a life partner, my advice to women is date all of them: the bad boys, the cool boys, the commitment-phobic boys, the crazy boys. But do not marry them. The things that make the bad boys sexy do not make them good husbands. When it comes time to settle down, find someone who wants an equal partner. Someone who thinks women should be smart, opinionated and ambitious. Someone who values fairness and expects or, even better, wants to do his share in the home.”

— Sheryl Sandberg (COO of Facebook) in her best-seller Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead (2013).

Sandberg’s advice to young women is rational. It allows women to have fun, then marry nice beta providers — dreaming at night of the Alpha lovers from their past (see this example from a hit TV show). It’s called “settling”, a rational strategy for women who have partied hard for a decade and now see “the wall” approaching.

While have fun then settle seems logical but cold, some women are more aggressive. They use Girls’ Game: romance the man, stage the party-of-her-life, marry, have kids, divorce when they are in school — then get community property, child support, and independence. The husband provides support during those first few difficult years for the children, then divorce. This gets the children she wants without the bother of having a husband after a few years of marriage). It is the logical strategy for women raised to value their independence above all else.

These strategies were an immense success for the women of the Baby Boomer and Millennial generations who used them. Combined with increased access to higher education and careers, this is the closest any generation of women has come to “having it all.”

One important result: in 2005/06 less 60% of US adolescents (11, 13, and 15 years old) lived with both birth parents (per the OCED Family Database), the lowest level in the OCED. Today probably even fewer do.

Toxic Masculinity

The key to understanding toxic masculinity: logic

“If all masculinity is toxic then fatherless children must have an advantage.

“But if fatherless children are over-represented in prisons, then there is no advantage to being fatherless.”

— Timothy Leo Ernest Crowe in a comment to Feminists conquer the Evangelicals.

Each day brings another barrage of articles about toxic masculinity — often defined as masculinity. But there is a class of women who have escaped toxic masculinity, raising their children in a more-or-less male-free home: divorcées. Those households are a control group. Comparing them with children of two-parent families (i.e., children who had Dads for most of their youth) shows the effect of toxic masculinity.

Oddly, the results of this massive social experiment have been known since 1992 — when Vice President Quayle gave his famous Murphy Brown speech about the ill effects of single parenthood (it is difficult enough for two parents). Although liberals condemned him for pointing out the obvious, years later they admitted the validity of his analysis. But they quickly put that knowledge down the memory hole.

The firm ground from which we can see the gender wars

The kaleidoscope of events bewilders us, allowing partisans to focus on the facts they find most pleasing. This makes communication difficult and complete analysis impossible.

Like a ball of string, the key is to first find the end. How do we know we have the end? Both parties’ behavior looks rational, without assuming the ones we like are mad (i.e., like the Joker) or evil (e.g., Hitler).

From these two insights we can build fuller and clearer pictures of the gender wars, and make more accurate predictions. That these two insights are contested shows that consensus understanding in America remains impossible. That will change, eventually. Let’s take that opportunity when it appears.

For more information

Ideas! For shopping ideas see my recommended books and films at Amazon.

If you liked this post, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. See all posts about society and gender issuesabout feminismabout marriage, and especially these …

  1. A brief guide to the new war of the sexes. Both sides are 100% right.
  2. America’s war of the sexes gets worse. Here’s why.
  3. Origin of the gender wars — Analysis by Allan Bloom.
  4. The war on masculinity is a war on men.
  5. Feminists are right: sexism is the answer!
  6. Professor Suzanna Walters asks “Why can’t we hate men?”

The other front to feminists’ crusade: wrecking boys

The Boy Crisis: Why Our Boys Are Struggling and What We Can Do About It
Available at Amazon.

The Boy Crisis:
Why Our Boys Are Struggling
and What We Can Do About It
.

By Warren Farrell (The Myth of Male Power: Why Men Are the Disposable Sex) and
John Grey (Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus.

I will be posting a review later this month. Until then, from the publisher…

“What is the boy crisis?

  • It’s a crisis of education. Worldwide, boys are 50 percent less likely than girls to meet basic proficiency in reading, math, and science.
  • It’s a crisis of mental health. ADHD is on the rise. And as boys become young men, their suicide rates go from equal to girls to six times that of young women.
  • It’s a crisis of fathering. Boys are growing up with less-involved fathers and are more likely to drop out of school, drink, do drugs, become delinquent, and end up in prison.
  • It’s a crisis of purpose. Boys’ old sense of purpose – being a warrior, a leader, or a sole breadwinner – are fading. Many bright boys are experiencing a “purpose void,” feeling alienated, withdrawn, and addicted to immediate gratification.

“So, what is The Boy Crisis? A comprehensive blueprint for what parents, teachers, and policymakers can do to help our sons become happier, healthier men, and fathers and leaders worthy of our respect.”

23 thoughts on “Lightning-like insights reveal truths of the gender war

  1. 15 years ago, around the time of the rape scandals at the Chair Force Academy, the Media/Left was using the term “hypermasculinity.” Now they’ve progressed to “toxic masculinity” while never defining what toxic masculinity is. The lack of definition, along with their criticism of any masculinity, suggests that they’re opposed to all masculinity.

    ((Sheryl Sandberg)) is of the vanishingly-small number of elite women who manage to make their plans work. The rest of women hit the wall and spend the rest of their days with cats. I’ve seen it over and over again as a bleeding-edge Millennial. It isn’t pretty.

    1. So are the feminists “wrecking” boys in the same way Jim Jordan did, or in a more figurative sense?

  2. Men are gradually throwing out the “old books” and their outdated rules for the new books. Say hello to “guy game”. First, we had PUA’s, then MGTOW, now an ever more pervasive red pill awareness among men. Take it for what you will but Google Trends index searches reveal “MGTOW” searches have quadrupled and “red pill” searches have tripled in a few short years. Among my generation of male friends (Gen X), it takes a big event (usually ‘divorce rape’) to bring them out of their blue pill stupor. Even then, only half seem to have the courage and intellectual curiosity to see the world of intersexual dynamics for how it really works, and more importantly, do something about it.

    But what is happening among Millennial and Gen Z men? Can they shatter the gynocentric blue pill illusions they are so steeped in before entering marriage? Or must they too experience the same harsh lessons Gen X men have encountered?

    1. The constant re-branding of the mra/pua genre mirrors the broader self-help culture. A generation of gurus sells their books and seminars to insecure young (and sometimes old ;) ) men. The image of the movement becomes tarnished, people grow up or become disillusioned and the book sales just aren’t what they used to be. A new generation of gurus repackages the same hokum in new language, a new crop of insecure young men latch on and the cycle repeats. After PUA, MGTOW, and “red pill” waves have passed , there’ll be the Next Big Revolution til it fades out and is replaced by another Next Big Revolution, and on and on.

    2. I took a class on how to pick up women. I learned more about male anxiety” by Gareth Rubin in The Guardian, 22 November 2014 — “As controversial ‘pickup artist’ Julien Blanc is barred from the UK, Gareth Rubin attends a dating course by a British lothario.”

      “And for their part, the acolytes, the guys who spend a lot of money on these courses, are often living their lives vicariously because they have low self-esteem. They watch their idols in the same way that teenage boys watch James Bond and hope one day to be just like him. It just doesn’t work out that way.”

    3. Jimp,

      Wow. That’s an amazing reply. Let’s deal with it on two levels. First, Rubin’s report.

      (a) He seems surprised that people going to an introductory course are unskilled in the subject matter and need it. That’s odd. What did he expect? My son teaches intro firearms. The people there often need (or think they do) a pistol for self-defense, and are nervous when handling a firearm. Neither shows the ineffectiveness of the course. What counts is how they are afterwards, and even more so — how they after six months of practice with what they learned.

      (b) He tells us nothing about the effectiveness of the course. If he was doing journalism, not propaganda, he would have done follow-up interviews. Instead he speaks like the Pope, ex cathedra, about the course. As a Guardian writer, I’d expect nothing else. That you find this definitive is odd.

      Second, how does this support your very specific assertions? My guess is that you have no evidence, that you are just making stuff up, telling yourself stories that flatter your ideology. That’s how most people writer comments, which is sad.

      “A generation of gurus sells their books and seminars to insecure young (and sometimes old ;) ) men. The image of the movement becomes tarnished, people grow up or become disillusioned and the book sales just aren’t what they used to be. A new generation of gurus repackages the same hokum in new language, a new crop of insecure young men latch on and the cycle repeats.”

    4. I can’t generate a link but go to Google Trends and compare MGTOW and “how to get a girlfriend” since 2004.might not be scientific but interesting

    5. Delusion must be a hell of a drug, Larry. The saddest thing I can think of is a senior citizen who actually believes the PUA racket but go buy one of these courses (free vest and fedora included!) if they’re so effective.

    6. Jimp,

      “The saddest thing I can think …”

      Since you have given zero evidence that your theory is correct, we can easily dismiss it. Faith-based assertions, such as yours, are credible only to those who share your religion or ideology. They just appear as weird to outsiders.

      That you preference your ideology over the actual experience of so many people suggests that you have excellent self-esteem, and consider yourself superior to them. No comment needed on that.

    7. Larry,
      I found a link with added graphs. What it means, not sure, I don’t have time to backup my post with research links.
      I think more and more men are unhappy because what happened to gender relations. When I checked a few comment sections under the Gender Wars, it seems there are more than usual. You don’t need to give exact numbers but let’s say in percentages how much more clicks do you get when you discuss gender relations?

      https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?date=all&geo=US&q=how%20to%20get%20laid,mgtow,dating%20advice,how%20to%20get%20a%20girlfriend

    8. Karoly,

      I agree that this is interesting data, but who can say what it means? To mention three more obvious factors —

      Having “girlfriends” and “boyfriends” has been going out of style for decades. Perhaps it peaked in the early 1960s, when boys would “pin” girls — legitimizing the boy-girl-friend relationship. Now we have picking up and “friends with benefits.”

      I am skeptical that Google is picking up a real social trend by showing a large rise and fall over a decade in such a fundamental social dynamic as having or getting girlfriends.

      Note the curious relation of MGTOW to “getting a girlfriend.” They are opposite behaviors and have opposite trendlines.

      “I think more and more men are unhappy because what happened to gender relations.”

      Yes, I agree! That is, I believe, also true of women. These changes are the core subject of my 150+ posts about the Gender Wars.

  3. Jimp,

    Your perspective belies how out of touch you are with the evolution of the ‘manosphere’. And an evolution it is. Your talk of gurus and courses is woefully outdated. The Red Pill is essentially open source, meaning there are no gurus and there is no top-down doctrine. Individuals give and take what they want from it, some seek to simply improve themselves, others wish to learn more about evolutionary biology, others wish to swap ‘field reports’ on dating strategies, some wish to master ‘game’ to get laid more, and yet others look to improve their stale marriage. The diversity of thought, community sourced intel and bottoms-up approach of Red Pill is anything but a movement full of gurus and acolytes.

    Are there blogs, authors and influencers? Of course. Are there PUA hucksters selling “systems”? Yes. But your broad brush characterization is highly off the mark.

    I’m having a hard time discerning your opinion on the original blog post here. Do you question the existence of ‘girl game’ and gynocentrism? Do you think that when men band together to discuss pro-masculinity or men’s issues that it must be rooted in misogyny? Are you apathetic to the rapidly evolving gender dynamics of our society? Are you cynical about what men can do to adjust to it?

  4. “Gareth (((Rubin))) in The Guardian, 22 November 2014 — ‘As controversial “pickup artist” Julien Blanc is barred from the UK, Gareth Rubin attends a dating course by a British lothario.’”

    My use of the parentheses in the first comment must be like a bat signal for the crazies.

    How is Gareth Rubin at all relevant to OP? The guy is a tabloid journalist with a profile picture on his website that says, “Kids, come with me, I have candy in my windowless van.” Is he a friend of yours, Gimp?

    “The saddest thing I can think of is a senior citizen who actually believes the PUA racket but go buy one of these courses (free vest and fedora included!) if they’re so effective.”

    We’re not interested in your style. How is any of this relevant to the post? Why are we talking about PUAs and MGTOWs?

    1. You’re a standard issue internet anti-Semite whining for attention. No one cares bro. Ask the sad man that runs this site why we’re talking about PUAs and MGTOWs.

    2. Jimp,

      You have made a series of bold statements. When called to support them, you have been unable to support them.

      Now, as trolls usually do, you reply with baseless insults. Good-bye.

  5. “These strategies were an immense success for the women of the Baby Boomer and Millennial generations who used them. Combined with increased access to higher education and careers, this is the closest any generation of women has come to “having it all.””

    Makes me think of Edward N Luttwak in his book Strategy: the Art of War And peace, and his discussion of the culminating point of success. Feminist sexual strategy, or girl game, or whatever you want to call it has hit its culminating point of success. It’s kind of like aircraft carriers. They keep getting more expensive, but that doesn’t mean they work better, and that particular game has changed anyway.

    Red Pill for guys, Girl Game for girls. These things are rational, if you can make them work, they just can’t work for everybody. If a woman can postpone marriage, ride the carousel, marry her beta, and then divorce rape him, then good for her. But if enough women do that, word eventually gets round. And if guys find that they can’t marry until their late 20s or early 30s, and that the marriage is likely to end badly for them, then marriage itself becomes less attractive. The strategy is rational, and so are the consequences if enough women follow it. And those divorces have some consequences for the children, as well. Some things can only work for a limited number of people before you have a low trust society and all that implies.

    People don;t always judge their own attractiveness and their own prospects correctly. A strategy that involves postponing marriage to the last minute while still being attractive enough to catch a good partner carries some risk if your judgement of your own attractiveness and prospects is off a bit.

    Remember, blackjack is beatable if you know correct strategy and can count cards, but you better know your strategy cold, you better not make a mistake in your counting, and if the casino figures out that you are counting correctly, they’ll chuck you out.

  6. Sexually transmitted diseases are rampant in specific communities, some of them leading to sterility and serious complications in pregnancy. If the girls want to fk all the boys, they run high risks. Some of those bad boys will take control and do whatever they want. The girl may come out the other side, but she probably won’t be the same. Sexist? No, just real.

    1. Cracker,

      Thanks for bringing up this interesting subject. Per the CDC’s 2016 report, the national rate of Chlamydia is rising steadily. The rate for most other STD’s is stable or falling.

      They have data on the subgroups, as you point to.

  7. Isn’t it odd how polling shows women becoming less and less happy over the years, even as society becomes more and more feminist?

    1. Jeff,

      I agree. It’s an amazing fact of modern life, shown in surveys of many different kinds (eg, asking coeds about their lives). But it’s counter the dominant narrative, and so the Wise ignore it and journalists hide it.

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