Archive for September, 2005

24
Sep
05

Delusions of Amandeur

I could not pass up this little piece from Amanda Marcotte’s blog. It ties into Wednesday’s discussion involving a Salon article and Hugo’s whinging over men who won’t commit …

“Some 19-year-old girl doesn’t know her talents, goals, and ambitions. She doesn’t know that life can be very hard and very heart-breaking yet. There’s a lot she doesn’t know, but there is one thing a 19-year-old going to Yale and desiring the lifestyle of the upper middle class does know very well–the stay-at-home wife is a must-have accessory to that life. The whole child-rearing rationale doesn’t hold water and is a recent cover story for the real truth, which is that a lot of men still put their egos into having dependent wives. Back before feminism made it gauche to just come out and say this, my grandfather was blunt with my grandmother–he was not going to be humiliated by having a wife who worked, because then people would think he couldn’t take care of his business. That attitude has largely faded by necessity amongst us worker bee types, but I assure you that people who are grabbing for the other trappings of the upper class lifestyle are going to want the whole package, and that includes the dependent wife.

“If you doubt it for a second, take a gander at this load of anti-feminist trolling at Hugo’s blog. Wear a mask and goggles, because it gets ugly in there. But Hugo’s post was on the now-infamous ‘listless lads‘ article at Salon, and how women’s financial independence is going to inevitably reshape our relationships with men, to the benefit of women and to the detriment of certain illusions men have had that women have conspired in the past to keep for them. (Illusions like the ones being touted in that NY Times article, which reads like porn for social climbers if you look at from a certain angle. Women love dependence! No, really!) It doesn’t take long for the anti-feminists out there to bitterly whip out the ancient quote, ‘A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle,’ and attempt to confuse the meaning of that saying.”

WAIT A MINUTE. I thought the conversation was about “listless lads.” I thought it was a WOMAN who was complaining about these guys. How did we move from an article on commitment-wary males to a sermonette on how men want to keep women dependent and needy??! Well, I guess that’s the modus operandi of feminists like Amanda: Hijack any discussion concerning men and women and turn it into a diatribe about “Patriarchy” no matter how much a ridiculous non sequitur such a detour is.

But anyway, Amanda enlightens us on the real meaning of the “fish” needing the “bicycle” …

“So let me make it clear what the word ‘need’ means in this instance. I need a man if I want some [___].”

My, my, I thought feminists were against sexual objectification. Reducing someone to that person’s reproductive organs! How dehumanizing. Do you think I could get away with saying something comparable about women? Or should I know the answer to such a question by now?

“I need a man if I am to have a boyfriend. I need a man to lift some furniture.”

I really think men should tell women like Amanda to lift the furniture their cotton’-pickin’ selves. After all, men are expected to do their own laundry and cook these days.

“I need a man in that I need my male friends, family, coworkers, internet buds and every other man in my life I lean on or just enjoy. What I don’t need a man for is to define me or make me worthy of existence.”

Good enough. While we’re renouncing attempts to defining one sex in terms of commitment to the other, we can chunk asinine statements like the following:

“Men need to focus on confronting one another in love, and encouraging our brothers to be willing to do the difficult and ultimately rewarding work our sisters are calling us to do.”

Oh, wait a minute, Hugo Schwyzer said that. Never mind. Continue, Amanda:

“But after reading that article and of course reading stuff from the religious right and the anti-feminist squad and all the other conservative [___] out there, it’s clear to me that even this small, hard-won truth for women–that we have a right to define ourselves and not be defined solely through men–is sorely resented by a lot of people. It strikes me as wholly pathetic for men to fantasize about being needed to give some woman her reason to exist. On the surface it seems like a good deal, I guess, because if someone is dependent on your financially and also for identity, she won’t be giving you much grief by disagreeing or anything like that, but still, it’s pathetic. Because if you’re needed by someone, you can never rest assured that you’re wanted by someone. Jane Austen illustrated that fact to a T a couple of centuries ago in Pride and Prejudice by having a sympathetic female character hold her nose and marry an odious male character because she needed to have a marriage to basically exist in her society. Something for men to consider before they get all excited about the idea of having a dependent, subservient wife who stays out of your way and never disagrees with you openly–you’ll never be sure, on one level or another, if she even likes you.”

Ok, guys. You know the drill: We are a bunch of culturally conservative loonies that want to strip women of their their right to live their lives as they see fit. The next meeting of the Dark Society of Patriarchal Losers and Creeps will be held at a location yet to be disclosed. George Bush, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, Osama bin Laden, Jimmy Hoffa, and Elvis Presley will be present.

But seriously, I wander why Amanda continues to harbor some delusion that MRAs want to keep women barefoot and pregnant. I think of a homely girl fantasizing about men stalking her. No stalkers exist, but the girl is so starved for a sense of importance that she craves even negative attention. It reminds me of an old proverb in the Bible: “The wicked flee when no one pursues.” I cannot but believe that the same is the case for Amanda and many other feminists of her generation. There is not enough drama in their lives, so they have to create it. Don’t believe me? Here’s what Amanda recently wrote ..

“I was listlessly looking at some pathetic conservative writers continue to blame women who aren’t married for Hurricane Katrina and despairing for idiots to make fun of, and then glorious day! [emph. mine]

Anyway, here’s the truth about nearly all the MRAs I know: MRAs have no interest in keeping women down. It’s too much work. In fact, “too much work” is the point. Hugo Schwyzer got the point; Amanda didn’t. Hugo tries to inspire men to take on the challenge of relationships with contemporary women. I suggest that if men want that kind of a challenge, they might want to consider the Peace Corps. Many a man has already asked just what can a contemporary woman offer him. Indeed, what can Amanda offer? I have an idea about that; let’s see the quote again ..

“I was … despairing for idiots to make fun of, and then glorious day!”

I rest my case, your honor. LOL. At any rate, Amanda told us what she “needs” from men. Now let me tell you what men need from Amanda – We need for her (and her like-minded sisters, for that matter) to leave us alone and to get a life.

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21
Sep
05

Hugo Provides Grist for the Mill Again

Sorry, I couldn’t resist once more but …

Today, over at Hugo Schwyzer’s blog, there is much hand-wringing over some reader responses to a Salon article. Apparently, a female writer wondered aloud (like so many tiresome others before her) where all the “good men” went, and some males readers upbraided her. As some male respondents noted, they find modern women too demanding, and therefore undesirable.

Hugo’s reaction is outrageously hilarious. After decades of feminists demonizing the sexuality of men and declaring them to be dispensable, a feminist now tell us men we need to pursue relationships with today’s women! Never in my lifetime would I have expected to see a feminist adopting a stance of heterosexual pronuptialism. I thought the love/marriage-horse/carriage real-men-should-get-married-and-sire-babies schtick was solely the domain of the cultural conservatives. But it only goes to show that often what a feminist says in earnest is more amusing than any parody of the same.

What kind of women should we seek out, Hugo? The reaction of Third Wave Feminists to contemporary men can be best summed up in this statement: “You stupid, misogynist losers! We don’t need you for anything! And by the way … what is your pathetic problem that you won’t ask women like us for dates??? …. Not that WE would date you, mind you, but you still owe us an explanation for everything you do with your pitiful lives that don’t interest us in the least bit.” Anyway, I now shall utter this maxim in the face of the new feminist pronuptialists:

A man needs a feminist blogger like a fish needs a bicycle.

18
Sep
05

Now on Pay-Per-View: HugoBoy vs. the Nice Guys

I know I am breaking my code of silence regarding a certain male feminist, but here it goes …

Over at Hugo Schwyzer’s blog, our feminist MC appears to have engaged in yet another misrepresentation of some MRAs. Hugo gets the Pot/Tea Kettle Award of the Month for this statement …

“… the Nice Guys, with their penchant for personal attacks and slurs, represent an adolescent fringe.”

Sigh. Hugo, you really shouldn’t leave yourself vulnerable on that one. Anyway, in addition to the supporting comments by Hugo’s fans, there were some MRAs that called Hugo’s hand on his demagoguery. I think I saw where he deleted some content by MRAs. Hugo apparently cannot take what he so easily dishes out to others. Instead, either he or some sympathizer apparently likes to lurk on private MRA boards, quote MRAs out of context, distort them, make unfounded accusations, and knock down pathetic straw men. Then when people correct Hugo on his accusations, he seems to shut off the rising tide of dissent on his blog, creating a perfect ideological echo chamber. Ladies and gentlemen, like the T-shirts say: “This is what a feminist looks like.”

10
Sep
05

Remind Me Again Why a Man Needs a Woman (Aftertaste)

Well, I no sooner put up my personal jeremiad against the many narcissistic females of our time when, lo and behold, someone comes along with a doozy suitable for framing. I suggest my microcosmic band of loyal readers take a look at Marc Rudov’s recent article at MND, “Why Men Avoid Commitment.” Yeah, what he said! Ditto. Forgive me for playing the heretic, but in light of the technological advances our society has made, I fear a somber truth has emerged: the sexes only stayed with each other in ages past out of dire necessity. Oops! Did I say that? Say it isn’t so. Really, please do.

06
Sep
05

Remind Me Again Why a Man Needs a Woman

We know the way of the birds and the bees. The males seeks the female. Reproduction occurs and the genetic legacy of a species is passed to yet another generation. With regard to human beings, the will to seek the opposite sex is no exception to the rule. And yet these days, many men are not fulfilling their so-called obligations in this matter. They are simply turning their backs. These men do not constitute just an isolated cabal of “bitter woman-haters.” The number of young single men refusing to play the game of love is now roughly twenty-two percent of the fish pond. And that has the status quo concerned.

Indeed, there are some culturally conservative pundits like Albert Mohler who want to charge single men with gross neglect of their supposed duty to “be fruitful and multiply.” But the raised eyebrows are not just coming from the right of center. Feminist journalist Susan Reimer has taken notice as well (viz., in her article “Young Men are Running from Marriage”).

What’s going on? Are men selfish? Have they become immature? As tantalizing as these questions may be, I submit that the pundits from left to right have collectively missed the short bus to Clue Elementary.

The matter is quite simple. Human beings tend to take the path of least resistance. Men have weighed the pro and cons of marriage and commitment, and now they have found the prospects of having long-term relationships with women quite untenable.

Consider that there is no frontier homestead that demands a familial division of labor between the sexes and no need for sixteen children to survive. In the wake of Maytag, Whirlpool, and Swanson, the functions of the family has been outsourced to impersonal corporations. So, there is an increasing number of men who have the temerity to ask, “Just why do I need a woman, anyway?”

Oh, I am certain the status quo will parrot a typical list of compelling reasons why men should still seek out women: sex, companionship, children, and love. However, let’s examine these so-called benefits and see what men have to come realize about each one.

Sex

Ah, the joys of having sex with the same woman over and over again. The stuff of fairly tales. Here’s the biggest scandal of the times: Many Western women are lousy in bed. After three decades of criticizing the bedroom performance of men, I am certain many will be shocked to find that men want a woman who will do more than just lie on the bed and think all she has to do is look pretty. And as for looking pretty, since women have liberated themselves from the “oppressive social constructs of unrealistic beauty,” it looks like men cannot even receive any satisfaction in that department. In fact, men will be lucky to find their female partners having a modicum of appreciation for staying physically fit.

Feminists have screamed about men reducing women to sex objects, but in a way, feminists have fostered this objectification. After all, they have insisted that there are no meaningful differences between men and women. They balk at the idea of women complimenting men, so what we are left with is a bland landscape of androgynous human beings that differ from each other only with respect to their reproductive organs. Indeed, reductionism at its best.

If this is all women have to offer, men may put out less money and time for such alternatives as pornography, sexual devices for men, prostitutes, etc. For better or for worse, many men are actually pursuing these alternatives. The status quo can scream about women being demeaned by the sex industry, but who can ultimately stand between a female entrepreneur and her customer base when there money to be made? Such are the workings of capitalism. The market prices are dropping in the face of deregulation, globalization and increased competition, ladies.

Then there are religious men who may conscientiously abstain from such forbidden alternatives. They have nonetheless come to the conclusion that the steak is not worth the sizzle. Instead, they have realized that a man can master his desires and that without too much difficulty, thank you very much. Some sister at church can crack her Bible and proclaim, “It is better to marry than to burn!” The problem is that many religious men are not even burning; they threw away the matches. In essence, the minor nuisance of sexual tension is manageable and much more tolerable than a life sentence with a Pharisaical harridan who has hang-ups about sex anyway.

Companionship

Women are supposed to offer men companionship, or so they say. After all, “its is not good for the man to be alone.” Or is it? Technically, two college freshmen stuck in the same dingy dorm room by an indifferent university bureaucracy have companionship. They get to see other day in and day out. They get to learn invaluable lessons in tolerance and compromise. But when it’s all said and done, a college student would probably still prefer to have his own pad.

The people holed up in office cubicles along with their fellow coworkers have companionship, too. They usually have a supervisor hovering over them the way the some gawky kid does an ant farm. Such are the joys of not being alone. But in such dehumanizing circumstances, who remains lonely nonetheless? In actuality, many men find that the women in their lives remind them of their bosses at work: always criticizing, demanding, threatening to make things difficult. Like work, men find themselves not alone, but still lonely. A man might as well stay at the office, and in fact many men do.

Women have constructed a negative caricature of masculinity, and yet oddly enough, many of them have become what they have always accused men of being: boorish, egoistical, overbearing, and insensitive. Does a man really want Archie Bunker for a wife? In addition, many young women have been raised in a culture that sees men as incompetent, oppressive, and dangerous. How can men regard these neurotic specimens of humanity as relationship material?

Just what is so endearing about the contemporary woman, anyway? Her intelligence? Her worldly success? A man can admire another male for these things and yet feel no compulsion to be in a romantic relationship with him. There has to be something more, and yet with so many women, men find that there isn’t. Women no longer compliment men. They compete with men.

Children

Many men may want children, but women probably want children more. That is, they often want children more than they want the men. Men are simply a means to an end in that regard. When a man becomes a father, he usually becomes sidelined in the family unit. He becomes that inconvenience that is tolerated merely for the financial support given to the wife and children. Or least this is the case for too many marriages. In a culture that demeans fathers, what else could we come to expect?

So, many men are asking why they should even bother with fatherhood. Everywhere men look, they can see self-centered rugrats raised on junk-food who are more in tune with their X-Boxes than with their dads. Everywhere men look, they can see young mothers are strangely bereft of their mates. What happened? A divorce? Who initiated the divorce? Was it over trivial reasons? Which party did the courts favor? Who got custody of the kids? Men can guess the answers to these questions. They are not fooled. Finally, a man has to ask just why a woman who has grown up to see men as dispensable should be the trustee of his genetic legacy.

We can suppose that women can try to find some consolation in their local sperm bank should men refuse to do their patriotic duty. The problem is that women in their greed have just about killed the gander that lays the golden gamete. Already, sperm donors have been hit with palimony suits. Should this trend continue, men will probably back off from donating their sperm for the benefit of womankind. Sorry ladies, blame your sisters for that one.

Love

Women might say that they want a man who is handsome, athletic, hard-working, financially comfortable, intelligent, witty, gentle, etc. But when some are questioned about what they can contribute to a relationship, many of them claim that they have their “love” to offer. What does that mean? Imagine if the roles were reversed. Imagine if a slovenly, unemployed, lazy man with a dull personality demanded a blonde bombshell with a high-status career. What if he said, “I can offer her my love!” He would be laughed into the next star system by the Collective Sisterhood. But as we see, the Cinderella Entitlement Mentality is strong among contemporary women. They think their tokens of appreciation are an adequate contribution to a relationship. They “love” a man the way they love a kitchen appliance – when it performs as expected. Someone should clue contemporary women in on the fact that the best way they can show their “love” is to be women who are loveable.

As it is, many women don’t really love men. They love things. They love being in love. Love demands loyalty, long-suffering, and compromise. Grrl power will have none of these things. It has been said that love takes effort. Indeed. The problem is that in many Western societies, women take too much effort. Remember, it’s about the path of least resistance.

But hey, that was just the positive side of the ledger! What’s in the other column for the men who bother with women? Well …

carping
belittlement
tedium
stress
mounting bills
mindless materialism
favorite hobbies being abandoned
women who don’t take care of their appearances
bland sex
cuckoldry
STDS
divorce
domestic violence (carried out against men)
false charges of rape, assault, harassment, etc.
punitive family laws
custody battles
alimony
child support
circumscribed lives

Conclusion

It’s not looking good for you, ladies. I really hope you like the song about “sisters doin’ it for themselves” because that what the future is shaping up to be. And the thing is that I’m not writing anything here that is earthshattering. I am merely reiterating the sentiments of so many other male writers. Yet, it just feels so good to get the matter off my chest and have it said once more!

Go ahead and accuse us men of being bitter losers who can’t get dates. We don’t care. This and other accusations are but a small bruising of our male egos. That damage doesn’t compare to what women can do otherwise should we choose to care about them. Really, our bank accounts don’t have the human capacity for hearing what you women have to say.

You can wax eloquent about the long-term benefits of commitment all you want. It is beyond the scope of this treatise to argue about statistics that pro-marriage pundits trot out for men. The fact is that our society looks at short-term interests, yea, the bottom line of here and now. This is why people don’t wait till the funeral home anymore to dump their spouses. At the point of divorce, all supposed benefits of marriage are revealed for what they are: uncertain. And as for cohabitation? Men will back away from that ball ‘n chain also as the Nanny State marches forward with the concept of “meretricious relationships.”

Some will say not all women are bad. There are supposedly good women out there that won’t make insane demands and reduce a man’s life to wage slavery. One can also suppose there are gorgeous, well-adjusted streetwalkers with no STDS. Want to look for them? I don’t. You don’t like the picture I’ve painted, ladies? Then stop focusing so much on yourself and ask what you can bring to the table. Otherwise, my advice to you is simple: If you sing peans to your independence from men, then put your money where your mouth is. Enjoy your cats!