Friday, March 08, 2002

Zenpriest #67 - The Baby Bomb: How the Boomers were Used to Demolish a Culture

The baby boom had a long fuse. While the social mass of having such a large number of people suddenly added to a culture would naturally displace the center of social balance toward the values of younger people, the impact of the boomers was disproportionately greater than the percentage of the population they represented. The reason for this unusually large impact came from the convergence of several long-term trends and influences which converged at the time of the boomer generation to produce a sort of “Demographic Perfect Storm” which wrought fundamental changes in the culture.

When I say they were used to “demolish” it, I mean to fundamentally change the values which had defined the culture up until that time. Any culture is defined by its values, and when you change those values you change the culture into something else. Using the social mass of the boomer generation like a wrecking ball, they were slammed into a culture which was already undergoing fundamental changes in social organization and the institutions which perpetuated that organization. The large scale trends that came together as the boomers were being born and raised were:

- Demographic Displacements and Shifts
- The Rise of Mass Media
- Consumer Culture and
- Marxist Thought.

First Demographic Displacements and Shifts 

World War I was fundamentally about the end of the old hereditary aristocracies in Europe, but it had a subtle and unforeseen effect on the US as well. The long term trend of movement of the population away from farms, rural settings, and agrarian lifestyles toward urban settings and industrial employment got a huge bump from the servicemen leaving the farms to go off to war and not returning to the farms when they came back. Instead they tended to stay in the cities and feed the work force for the growing industrial output of the US.
About 1920, the first of two huge demographic crossover points was passed – when the majority of the population no longer worked on and drew their livelihood from farms, but instead lived in urban areas and was employed in industrial production or commerce. During the Depression and Dust Bowl eras of the 1930s, this rural to urban movement increased as many landholders lost their land and were forced to move to the cities and find employment where they could.

World War II was a repeat of the pulling of farm boys into the armed forces and then dumping them back in the cities, with the added twist of the GI Bill which allowed many of them to attend college who otherwise would have never had the chance to do so. This sudden increase in the proportion of the population with college degrees raised income expectations and did, in fact, result in increased personal incomes for a while, which in turn drove a growing housing market and the rise of “suburbia” as new living spaces were constructed on the edges of cities already at saturation point in terms of the number of people they could hold.

With the end of the war, the US was left with massive industrial production capacity but no longer had the majority of that output being destroyed by war and thus needing constant replacements. The suburban population centers with their newfound affluence and disposable income were one obvious outlet, as was post-war Europe and Japan in rebuilding mode. But, even with all those markets the unbelievable production of the US industrial engine would have soon saturated demand. The two concepts of “Planned Obsolescence” and “Conspicuous Consumption” were wedded with the newly emerging mass media of television to produce an advertising-driven culture of perpetual consumption.

No longer were people accustomed to producing most of their own needs like food, fuel, and even furnishings. They were entirely dependent on trading the wages for their labors with other people for all the necessities and luxuries of life. This played very well into Keynesian economics, or the “velocity economy” in which the economy was measured not by total wealth, but by how many times and how often a dollar changed hands.

These were the parents of the boomers, and the environment into which the boomers were born.

Consumer Culture

About 1960, one of the most profound demographic shifts in history occurred virtually unnoticed in the US: the number of people involved in the production of anything – agricultural or manufactured goods – slipped into the minority and there became more people involved in selling, distributing, or managing those goods than were involved in producing them. In other words, the US shifted from being a nation of producers to a nation of handlers. This laid the groundwork for being able to use such phrases as “service economy” or “information economy”, which would play a very significant role in how the expectations of affluence created by the circumstances of the boomers’ upbringing would be met as they moved into and through adulthood.

The boomers were raised on a steady diet of television, parental competition to “keep up with the Joneses”, and the repeated refrain from their depression-era parents that “we don’t want our kids to have it as hard as we had it.” They were also indoctrinated virtually from birth that they would carry on the tradition of being college educated which may have only started with their parents, but which was definitely seen as the key to “a better life” – which at that time generally meant “having more stuff.”

The Rise of Mass Media

After WW I, two new mass communication technologies really began to take off and spread – film (movies) and radio. These two technologies covered two very important aspects of culture – information dissemination and entertainment. Radio had the advantage over print media like newspapers in being immediate and timely, as well as being one step closer to direct human experience – hearing is a direct sensory experience, while reading requires intellectual processing and literacy in addition to sight. Literacy was far from universal at that time, so people could be reached by radio that could not be reached by newspapers, books, or magazines.
Film put the experience of “theatre” within the reach of the common people. While everyone might not be able to afford tickets to a Broadway play, almost everyone could scrape together the 5 cents for which they could purchase an hour or two of complete escapism. This escapism gained even wider appeal during the Great Depression when a great many people had really difficult lives from which they loved having the ability to purchase an hour or two of complete escape.

The film industry spawned an interesting side effect based on the social tendencies of people – the phenomenon of celebrity. Stage actors and other entertainers had always had a degree of fame and celebrity, but the mass market venue of film provided a much broader potential audience and a whole host of new niches for celebrities to fit into and exploit. It was possible to have only so many great Shakespearean actors or operatic divas, but movies provided the opportunity for many different types – from the buffoons of the 3 Stooges to the cowboy actor – to gain a following.

Radio and film merged their potentials in television. Sight, sound, and immediacy were a very potent combination. The propaganda potential of radio was well recognized and exploited in the years leading up to WW II and during the war, and the advent of television on a mass scale made it a propaganda device on steroids. In addition, it also made a very nice consumer good to occupy those factories, as well as being a self-perpetuating outlet for consumption because it created demand through advertising.

Radio also spawned a related industry which would eventually come to figure very heavily in the “information economy” to come – recorded music. While it was a product with some continuing market from its introduction up through the war years, it really started to become a force in its own right when presented with a market comprised of suburban teenagers with lots of time on their hands due to lack of involvement in any economic activity but still with disposable income.

So, all the fragments were arranged – massive production, massive consumption, high degree of wealth relative to what had gone before, mass media with both propaganda potential and the ability to create demand for consumer goods by emotional manipulation, and a number of products with no direct need or worth as necessities of life which were easy to produce and easy to distribute – when the baby bomb was detonated and sent those fragments tearing through the foundations of cultural values.

Marxist Thought

Now the plot thickens.

All of the above is merely descriptive – laying out the conditions that existed when this huge mass of new future citizens was dumped onto the scene.

Marxist thought goes back, of course, to Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in the mid-19th century. However, the portion I’m going to highlight starts in 1917 with the Bolshevik revolution in Russia. Rob has covered this extensively, so this is going to be an extremely brief synopsis. For a far more complete picture, go to or

The Russian revolution failed to spark the world-wide uprising of the proletariat to kill the capitalists which the Marxists had expected. In analyzing the reasons why it didn’t, Marxist theorists saw the cultural institutions of religion and religious values, family, patriotism/nationalism, and education as being too strong in maintaining and transmitting cultural values for such a major shift to take place. In order for the Communist revolution to come about, those institutions would have to be weakened and undermined and the cultural values they transmitted be destroyed.

One of the best ways to go about this was to deal with people’s baser appetites and motivations and weaken their intellectual and moral control of their behavior. A perfect model of how this might be accomplished was provided by Freudian psychoanalytic theory with his “id, ego, and superego” – the id being the reptilian brain and the animal appetites and emotions, the superego being social and moral consciousness, and the ego mediating the conflicts between the two. Appealing to the id, and weakening the superego, puts the ego in service of the id.

The Frankfurt School was a center of Marxist thought established in Germany in the early-mid 1920s. Their goal was to meld psychoanalytic thought with political action as a way of weakening cultural institutions supporting restraint, by endorsing hedonism and short-term gratification. The prime strategist was a man named Antonio Gramsci, who laid out a plan for a “Long March Through The Culture” which would leave every cultural institution which had defeated the Bolshevik revolution in a pile of rubble in its wake.
So, now the stage is set.

Fearing the rise of National Socialism, the Frankfurt School relocated to New York in the mid 1930s. Most of the members were Jewish, so they had real reasons to fear the anti-Semitic sentiment which was rising in Germany, and they were able to come into the US without attracting much attention because of the large influx of other Jewish intellectuals and professionals fleeing Germany for the same reason. Once here, they set out to infiltrate and become strong influences in the media, education, and psychotherapeutic communities. There was an easy symbiosis between these, particularly due to the chic and trendy nature of psychoanalysis in the post WW II US.

Despite the way that McCarthy has been ridiculed and demonized, there really were communists active in the entertainment industry during the post-war years. They didn’t concentrate as much on strictly Marxist themes as they did on indirectly attacking cultural values. Instead of a direct attack on religion, for example, a competing idea of nihilism was introduced and promoted – e.g. “Rebel Without A Cause.”

The boomers were sitting ducks for all this because they were children in the stage of life when the purpose and goal is to learn and internalize cultural values. Instead of the parents, churches, and communities which provided most of the input for previous generations, the boomers were raised by television, radio, and film. The monumental sexual drives of adolescence, which every culture has to find a way to grapple with and restrain, coincided with a generalized loosening of sexual mores and restraints. More and more sexual imagery started appearing, and the Pill conveniently arrived – separating sex from reproduction and making “recreational sex” a real possibility – just as the first boomers hit puberty.

During the “turbulent 1960s”, there were two major cultural phenomena which strained generational relationships even more than the classic and inevitable tensions between the old and the young – the civil rights movement, and the Vietnam War. The high level of distrust engendered among young people for the older generations, the “establishment”, was captured in Abbie Hoffman’s famous dictum “Never trust anyone over 30.” ”Traditional” values were seen as corrupt, exploitive, capricious, and often dishonest. A major youth movement/trend developed whose participants were called “Hippies” with values directly opposed to and reacting against the values of their parents and older generations. It was actually termed the “counter-culture”, which was an very accurately descriptive term because the values which defined it ran directly counter to prevailing cultural values of the time. ”Sex, drugs, and Rock’n'Roll” was the mantra, “Make Love, Not War” was the passion, and “Free Love” was the ideal goal. Hedonism became the highest good, and even members of their parents’ generation wanted to join the party and have some fun. The developmental period of adolescence got greatly extended, with many parents sitting down to smoke dope with their own kids, if not being the ones to introduce their own children to the drug subculture.

The expectations of affluence, plus the expectations of their parents, plus the Vietnam War sent the boomers to college in unprecedented numbers. Here is where the Frankfurt school had really been busy. A huge number of their members had achieved professorships in prestigious institutions, and by the late 1960s they owned the academy. Hardly any discipline outside the hard sciences was untouched. Their thinking pervaded the social sciences, the arts, philosophy, and even theology. The boomers were at college to LEARN, so that is what they did. Few had the critical facilities to question and analyze what they were being taught. Some of us renegades who did question saw the early beginnings of Political Correctness taking shape as refusing to conform to the ideological indoctrination would be severely punished. If you wanted good grades, and that meant the carrot of a “good job” that they dangled in your face, you toed the party line.

And, into this volatile mess, they injected feminism.

The family, paradoxically, was at the same time both the strongest cultural institution and one of the easiest to attack. The age old tensions between men and women, dubbed “the battle of the sexes” were easily exploited to get women to see themselves as an “oppressed” class. The sexual revolution was in the news, but not in everyone’s minds yet. The boomers were raised mostly under the old cultural mores and values regarding sex, and then suddenly turned loose with a new toy they weren’t quite sure how to play with. Mis-cues and misunderstandings between the sexes on what sexual “liberation” actually looked like were easy fodder for exploitation in the next phase of the gender war – the escalating issue of “rape.”

The establishment of “Women’s Studies” departments in the academy metastized the cancer, and gave the hard core haters an entrenched “bully pulpit” from which to spread their Marxist theory and hatred against the “class” of men.

Boomer men were on the horns of two-pronged dilemma They were at the stage of their lives when their primary goal and task was to find a mate and form a family, yet their pool of potential mates was developing values which were fundamentally different than the values that men had been led to expect to find in the women they would choose as wives. Trained in one set of skills and attitudes that had been attractive to women in the past, men were now finding women who were not attracted by those characteristics and were demanding something different. However, the specifics of what was demanded no longer followed any sort of cultural pattern but were mostly based on the preferences of individual women – their much vaunted “choices.”

No-fault divorce and the rise of “rape consciousness” fundamentally changed the relationship dynamic within marriage. The idea that a man could be convicted of “raping” his wife totally erased the long held tradition of “marital duties” and turned sex from being part of the foundation of the relationship between man and wife into an instance-by-instance exercise in the gratification of personal whims.

The Marxist concept of “class oppression” combined with the sex-fearing dysfunction of women like Susan Brownmiller severed the most basic marital bond in one blow.

This class warfare was extended by placing all sexual activity on a “continuum of oppression” and set up a situation and consciousness that men could not possibly do anything but lose – the fundamental attraction between the sexes which is essential for the continuation of the human race became proof of “oppression” and a constant and perpetual source of justification for claims of female victimhood. The class consciousness of the “sisterhood” hoodwinked women into believing that they had more in common with women living on the other side of the world, or with women who had lived and died years before they were born, than with the man with whom their shared their bed, their children, and their lives.

This “unity based on type” was exactly what the socialist and union organizer Eugene Debs was saying when he said -

"while there is a lower class, I am in it, and while there is a criminal element I am of it, and while there is a sooul in prison, I am not free." 

“Brotherhood” and “sisterhood” are the same basic concept, and are illustrations of the same type of “ideology over everything else” that sometimes found members of the same families, sometimes even biological brothers, on opposite sides in the US war between the states, or civil war. A woman might have a splendid life – a comfortable home, a loving husband, decent kids – but as long as there was one woman anywhere who was “oppressed”, then so was she. ”

“The personal is political and the political is personal” destroyed people’s ability to have personal relationships and turned all relationships into political relationships. A man and a wife might be having a typical couples argument, and suddenly the man became responsible for the mistreatment of women in the Middle East, the binding of Chinese women’s feet, and the lack of women’s suffrage a century ago.

In the face of this onslaught, most men felt an unbelievable sense of betrayal, but they were stuck in marriages to these women and their only choices were a lifetime of conflict or to just surrender and give in. Most men chose keeping their family together over falling on their swords of principle, and just caved in. Some even went so far as to exhibit a form of Stockholm Syndrome and became dedicated feminists, denouncing themselves in weird displays of schizophrenia and self-abdication.

Those that didn’t soon faced the Soviet-style “re-education camps” created by the DV industry which was based on the Marxist idea that all Domestic Violence was a conspiracy by men to perpetuate their “oppression” of women. There is no more purely Marxist bit of thinking at work in feminist countries today than the Duluth Model of domestic violence.

Demographic and economic shifts, and growth of mass media and consumer culture continue

This gradual infiltration of Marxist thought occurred against the backdrop of continuation of the social, economic, and cultural trends which took off a half century before. During the 1960s mass media exploded. For many years there had been only 3 TV broadcast networks and only people living in or near major cities had access to all three. As the distance increased, reception decreased and people living 60 or more miles from an urban center often could only get all 3 stations reliably if the weather was clear. Throw in a bit of rain or fog and most people got vague ghosts on the TV and slightly warmed rain or fog between them and the broadcast tower.

These remote communities soon saw a business opportunity open up in the form of Community Antennas, or Cable TV. Entrepreneurs built huge towers and installed signal boosters, filters, and amplifiers and delivered the signal to homes via coaxial cable. The low cost of this kind of distribution system led quickly to the development of original content specifically for cable, which eventually became cable networks like HBO, Cinemax, and MTV. The expansion of content drove up demand, and demand drove the expansion of content. An entire new “industry” was born which in turn spawned many new jobs.

The transition from a nation of producers to a nation of handlers in 1960 was the key to an economy which would have to absorb more new workers than ever before in history. A purely production-based economy could not have done so because there were not enough markets to absorb greatly increased output. At the end of the decade of the 1950s, the US, with 2% of the world’s population, was absorbing over 50% of the world’s industrial output. The rebuilding of Europe and Japan were essentially complete, so any increase in production would require opening new markets. But, opening new overseas markets would require spurring development in those areas so that those countries would have something of economic value to exchange with the US. Only a strategy of globalization provided enough potential for perpetually expanding markets, and one of the first functions to be “outsourced” to other countries was industrial production.

This fit perfectly with the white-collar expectations of the new generation who never once considered following in their fathers’ footsteps and becoming blue collar workers.

The boomers were a double-whammy to the labor market because not only was a larger number of men than ever before looking for places in it, but also a large number of women were following the feminist script to compete with men economically and for the available jobs. The “service economy”, and “information economy” ideas led to the rapid development of a generalized “managerial” class, which required skills which transferred seamlessly into a rapidly growing government bureaucracy.

As the boomers seeped into the workforce between 1964 and about 1986, the economy slid into the doldrums. The petroleum crisis in the mid 1970s ended cheap gasoline, dealt a crippling blow to the US auto industry because they were too slow to respond to trends and downsize their offerings, and opened the US market to Japanese autos of much higher quality than the US produced models. Globalization had begun in earnest.

Interest rates spiraled out of control in the early 80s, going over 20%, which depressed the housing market and sent ripples through the rest of the economy. The displacement of farm families of the 1930s was repeated as rising fuel costs and a weak economy forced a large percentage of the remaining family farms out of business.

Through all this, men and women had been stroking away, coping as best they could, trying to work out some sort of new balance and mixture of gender roles, and managing to get along.

And then the feminists unveiled the nuclear device of the gender war – the redefinition of normal sexual relations between men and women as “rayyyype!”

The notion of women as an “oppressed class” had simply failed to gain the traction it had needed to completely split the normal attraction between the sexes, so the obvious strategy was to attack that attraction itself. Susan Brownmiller had laid the conceptual foundations in the mid 1970s with “Against Our Wills”, and Catherine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin had carried the water of the concept forward with sexual harassment law and Dowkin’s sex-hating, man-hating, prose. All it took was for Mary Koss to fabricate her bogus bit of research in which she mysteriously “found” that “1 in 4″ women were being “rayyyyped” and the wedge to sever the trust and attraction between the sexes was set.

The feminist movement had pretty much stalled because most women still didn’t see their husbands, brothers, fathers, and male friends as the enemy. People were slowly working out new roles and people were adjusting to dual income families. The Equal Rights Amendment had failed back in the 1970s, but the real barriers to the kind of equality it envisioned were more in the slowly changing social attitudes. Things had changed blindingly fast as social change normally goes, but still not fast enough for the feminists.

And then, along came Susan Faludi, with her Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women. If there ever is a trial for war crimes of the gender war, I hope Faludi hangs. Despite what were actually huge strides toward a new more equal social system, including the fact that women had been getting the majority of college degrees for a full decade, she dismissed all that and re-kindled the sense of victimhood among women of a certain age group. There wasn’t a war before her book, but things certainly became one as a result of it.

In the brief cultural span of less than 50 years, every social value which was in place half a century ago has been swept aside. The idealistic boomers, fresh out of college with their Marxist ideas went into every aspect of government, and rode Lyndon Johnson’s “Great Society” into a welfare-therapeutic state where they controlled education, social services, and most branches of government as a result of having become entrenched in the multitude of bureaucracies spawned by the notion that every human problem could be solved if you just threw enough money at it.

The right to kill one’s own children and call them “choices” was enough of a blow to the culture, but when people started seriously using “same sex” and “marriage” together, the Long March Through the Culture was complete – absolutely nothing meant the same thing it had 50 years before.

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Thursday, March 07, 2002

Zenpriest #66 - Guy Stuff: Traveling Hard, Fast, and Light


Road Trip!

Those two words conjure up many romantic images of days gone by – Route 66, the “freedom of the open road”, and maybe even a memory or two of the Pony Express.
One huge advantage that guys have is that our needs are simple and  the list of “requirements” we have for comfort is fairly short.  Unlike a woman I knew many years ago whose idea of “roughing it” was “no reservations”, we as men can easily travel hard, fast, and light

There is so much of traditional manhood shown in that Pony Express poster – male ability, and freedom, and disposability.   “Must be willing to risk death daily.”  Men without family ties, “orphans”, were preferred.  Not only would no one really miss them, but their lack of interpersonal ties left them completely free to do what men, and only men, could do when set free.

Riders changed horses every 10 miles – the maximum distance a horse could travel at full gallop – and when the riders themselves were ridden out, they handed off the mail satchel to another man just like them.

It’s interesting that the only major “road trip/buddy” movie of the past few years has been about women – Thelma and Louise.  It’s popularity among women seems to indicate that some women, at least, envy the kinds of freedoms and mobility that men have always had.

Some of the authors and readers here are motorcycle enthusiasts.   Those with the pluck and grit to climb on their own “Iron Horse” can carry just about everything they need for a decently comfortable existence in their saddlebags.  A one-burner camp stove, day’s worth of rations, light sleeping bag, and a bivvy sack are all that is needed to cast an eye to the horizon and say to oneself  “I wonder what is over there?  I think I will go see.”

Some of the most powerful and pleasant memories of my life are experiences I had on motorcycle road trips. Many years ago a buddy of mine and I stood under a tree at Vail Pass eating french onion soup into which a passing thunderstorm had dumped a few hailstones while it was heating.  More than 25 years later we still get a laugh out of eating “Hailstone Soup” at Vail Pass.

He’s all settled down, now – with a wife, and a daughter, and a big mortgage, and a membership in the local Kiwanis Club.  He and I are cut from different cloth, and we have always known that.  Several years ago, he said to me that he had always envied me my freedom.  I told him that my life was as good a definition of hell as he would ever need.  He is a guy who needs comfort, and security, and someone to take care of him.  When we would have any sort of breakdown on one of our two-up trips,  he would go find some shade and patiently wait while I fixed whatever would need to be fixed.  He is the same type of  guy as many who have approached me on one of my road trips and said wistfully “Well, I used to have a bike, but my wife made me sell it.”

On  the last road trip we took together, and I am sure the last one we ever will take together, he made the comment that he realized that if I died on one of those twisting mountain roads I love so much to travel, that it would be “right”… that I would simply be dying the way I had lived.  He knows me really well, and has known me a long time, and he was right.

There has  always been a subset of men with itchy feet. We’re not the guys who coach your little league teams, or keep the florists and jewelry stores in business, or settle down like good betas and do what our wives tell us and sell our motorcycles when they tell us to. We don’t make very good husbands, or dads for that matter, but a lot of kids love to have us as crazy uncles that keep the family entertained by allowing them live vicariously through our exploits.  We are the kind of yahoos who climb on ships and sail toward what everyone else knows is the edge of the world and we are going to certainly fall off.  Or climb into experimental airplanes not knowing whether we are going to blow up or break the sound barrier.

We ain’t got a lick of sense, we are wilder than March hares, and as Burt Munro (a Kiwi from Invercargill, Julie) says in “The World’s Fastest Indian”, we often live more in 10 seconds on the edge than some people live in a lifetime.  And, that works out for everyone – because we want to, and they don’t.  We do crazy shit, and we love it.

We are gluttons for intensity – believing that life is best savored by taking BIG bites.   Yeah, we seldom do what we “should” do, which is why we are neither boring nor bored.  We never sustain a civilization, but we end up doing those things which a civilization cannot do without – carrying its mail, pushing its limits, and reminding people that he who is not busy being born is busy dying.

We travel fast, hard, and light, and for that reason travel mostly alone, sometimes in the company of other hard men, but seldom in the company of women.  You don’t want to be us, but you benefit from having us around.  We don’t want to be you, and we will fight like hell if you try to make us into clones of you.

We are the ones who have benefited most from feminism.  Women no longer need us, so we are now free to see what is over that next horizon, eat hail-stone soup, and sit by the ocean feeling the waves hit the shore and meditating for days on end.  Women have forced us to learn how to live without a woman’s love, and we learned while that can be painful for a man, it is not fatal.  We are “orphans” who are now free to make the lives we choose.

Facing death makes a man appreciate life in a unique way.  No longer is it worth wasting even one minute of this miraculous experience called “life” slaving away in some corporate cube so that a government can confiscate what we make by doing so.  Every minute of life passed is a minute we will never have again, and one gone out of a too small allotment we are given in the first place.

Related: EOTM: Road Trip '97

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Wednesday, March 06, 2002

Zenpriest #65 - Upping MRA "Game": Honing Our Rhetoric of Ridicule

Feminism is cultural-level Game being run by women, collectively, against men, collectively. Men and boys swim in a sea of negs, and the purpose is exactly the same as using negs in game – to keep the other side off balance.

While some serious practitioners of Game may be fine with the relative advantage that knowing Game gives them over a lot of other men, others cannot help but be aware that the playing field is tilted signficantly to the advantage of females and that leveling the playing field in general would probably help their overall percentages. As the trailblazers of Game have studied individual female behaviors and learned how to use those behaviors to their advantage, I think that men can certainly study collective female Game, or feminism, and use that understanding to improve conditions for men at the cultural level.

Nilk just made an interesting comment – “I don’t have the answers, but I suspect a part of it comes from beating the enemy at their own game.”

Let that one sink in for a minute.

In order to do that, first we must define the enemy, then identify their game, and finally analyze it so we can devise tactics to defeat it.

So, let’s start with who is the enemy. Are women “the enemy”? Yeah, yeah, I can hear the chorus of objections coming from all directions. Stow it. I’ll come back to this.

Is the NWO the enemy? They make a convenient scapegoat – like hobgoblins, evil spirits, and “patriarchy.” Sorry, but there have been more “new world orders” or “new orders for the ages” throughout history than wannabe prophets and messiahs, and there have been plenty of those.

Maybe Alphas, or SoCons, or maybe even “card-carrying-Kommunnnists!” And then again, maybe not.

Or maybe all of them are for one simple reason: their interests are not our interests, and they are going to pursue their interests and show no concern at all about ours – leaving that job to us. And if we don’t do the job of looking out after our own interests, then we are the ones who dropped the ball, not them.

So, let’s start with the enemy that looks back at us from the mirror and tackle that one first. What keeps us from actively advocating for our own interests? I’m looking for reasons, not excuses. (“Excuses are LIES, plebe!”) Identifying obstacles is the first step in the process of problem-solving, which we men are supposed to be so good at. Sorry, dudes, based on the performance of the past 45 years I would have to say we really suck at it. Let’s start by seeing if we can get out of our own way and start to do something effective.

Which brings me back to women and the game they have been running on men and boys.

While they may not be “the enemy”, they are certainly not our allies, either. Feminism has convinced a great many women that their interests and men’s interests are in conflict, mutually exclusive, and a zero sum game. That makes many of them our opponents, our competitors, and a group of people who generally view any gain for men as a loss for women. Many of them also view any loss for men as a group to be long overdue because every man throughout history has led a life of unbroken “power and privilege” don’cha’know.

So, one answer to this has been to run game on men and boys collectively with an unbroken and constant stream of negs – sometimes hidden behind “cuteness” and sometimes just flat-out man-bashing. The tiresome litany of complaints has become so cliched that most of us could write the entire kvetch based on the first line or two. Recently Novaseeker did a post about a post on another blog titled “94 reasons the guy I’m dating isn’t right for me.” A better title would have been “94 cliches negging men, repeated for the 10 millionth time.”

Whether they are “enemies” or not, you can pretty much count on most women playing for “Team Woman.” They are going to high-five each other over cutting those “over-inflated male egos down to size”, and nod their heads in enthusiastic agreement as the “you go grrls” give men their what-for.

And, betas just sit there with stupid Prozac grins on their faces and take it. Why?

There are a lot of reasons, but I want to focus on just a couple of them.

First, men have a very difficult time internalizing the fact that they are dealing with an opponent dedicated to stonewalling them and preventing from making any progress. For some odd reason, a lot of men unreasonably and irrationally cling to the “reasonable and rational” approach despite the fact that it has never worked.

Second, men generally lag behind women in the psychological warfare being waged. They do not realize that they have walked into a gunfight with a plastic spork, and when their patient explanations do not win over their opponents, they often get angry, flustered and inarticulate.

I think the next stage of evolution of cultural-level game will be for men to upgrade their skills in the rhetoric of ridicule. As things often play out now, one or two representatives from “Team Woman” can usually easily keep the issues confused and keep stinging men like hovering wasps with their crafted words which are skillful personal attacks designed to stonewall and derail discussion.

Our friend Anakin has done a very valuable piece of work with his “Catalog of anti-male shaming tactics” by identifying the most common games run on men to try to shut them up. I think it needs to be taken farther, however. While he identifies the mechanism – the emotional response of shame – it needs to be taken to the next step and how those tactics fit into an overall strategy needs to be subjected to the same sort of analysis.

This is why I have suggested no longer calling them “shaming tactics” and instead calling them “Personal Attacks and Mind Games Used to Silence Men.” The strategy is to shift the discussion from the subject at hand to being about the person, and with a personal attack put that person on the defensive.

So, this leads us back to the idea of beating our opponents at their own game.

The naive and simple Charlie Browns, thinking that they are not dealing with people who are actual opponents but simply people who don’t understand yet because it hasn’t been properly explained to them, will plunge doggedly ahead making points their opponents do not want to hear and will do everything in their power to prevent from being heard. The wasps will swoop in and start stinging – “loser, you hate women, you live in your mother’s basement, you must have a small penis” until they land one that hits a sore spot and triggers Chuck’s anger.

At this point he will lose his train of thought, and pop off with some terribly imaginative comeback like “bitch” or “whore” or “slut.” Contrary to all the nonsense about “slut shaming”, these terms don’t bother the attack wasps of Team Woman in the slightest. In fact, they are clear signals the wasps have hit their target, accomplished their objective, and reduced poor Chuck to barely articulate profanity.

So, it’s time for MRAs to up our game, and improve our own negging ability – to start honing our rhetoric of ridicule so we can sting our opponents as deeply as they are trying to sting us. This is where the masters of Game have a real advantage. They know how to go for the throat, how to undermine, and how to do it with a light touch so that objections can be dismissed as being thin-skinned, or having no sense of humor, or taking themselves too seriously.

Now, of course, this being Game, there will be the cultural level version of cockblockers. Most of these will be SoCons, or knee-jerk chivalrists, or manginas – “HOW DARE YOU SAY THAT ABOUT WOMANHOOD!!! Up with this, I WILL NOT PUT!!!”

That is probably where we need to start developing wingman skills. Instead of leaving our intrepid Man Who Is Concerned About The Status And Future Of Men (MWICATSAFOM? Nah, fuggit, “MRA” is much simpler) hanging out there on his own, we need to give him an assist.

Unfortunately, this will probably require going for the throat. It will require analyzing the areas where women really are insecure and beating on them the same way operatives from Team Woman will attack a man’s potential areas of insecurity in order to shut him down.

It’s nice to see that Paul Elam has resurrected A Voice For Men after a hiatus of several years. On his front page, he poses the interesting question which a lot of long-time MRAs have pondered -
“Suppose they had a gender war…
and men showed up.”

Are men ready to start taking the sticks of dynamite that Team Woman has been throwing at us for more than 45 years, lighting them, and throwing them back? Are we/they ready to take off the kid gloves, abandon their romanticized Victorian notions about women, and realize that many of them have no concern at all for us (best case) and some actually harbor intense and active malice toward us (worst case)?

Is Team Men ready to take the field? Is it time for “Game on”?

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Tuesday, March 05, 2002

Zenpriest #64 - Only a Fool Would Have Swallowed It

Just as any magazine has different sections and departments, such as sports, entertainment, hard news, etc., so will The Spearhead look at different aspects of the male experience in the early 21st century westernized world. And, I think most readers of the Spearhead will agree that experience has some issues.

One aspect of the traditional notions of masculinity favors the active over the passive. Men have been identified with doing, and are typically known by what they DO. How many times have you been asked the question, many times as the first opening of conversation, “What do you DO?”

Just for the fun of it, because I love to yank people’s chains by giving unexpected responses, I often reply “I don’t DO anything, I just am.”

There is immense power in not going along with people’s social expectations. I’m not talking about being actively anti-social and doing things which are immoral, unethical, or illegal; but rather to simply not fall into the subtle social manipulation which amounts to following a script: “Well, if I say “A” then that is your prompt to say “B.” “The Social Script”, or just the “The Script”, for short, is a very powerful means of subtly controlling other people’s behavior.

One of my favorite examples of not following the social script in circumstances where doing so is self destructive is a story about the philosopher Alan Watts. At a posh, high-brow, dinner party he was served some potatoes which were still scaldingly hot. He immediately spit them out onto his plate and looked up to a sea of faces aghast at his incredible breech of “table manners.” He laughed in their faces and said “Only a fool would have swallowed it.”

Only a fool would swallow something which is self-destructive, simply because he is under social pressure to do so.

Ferdinand did a recent post about “The Emptiness of Modern Manhood.” Welmer has said that “Over the last few years, it has become increasingly obvious that American men – particularly those of the post-boomer generations – have fallen into a cultural gap.” and “As our society slowly hews down the last pillars of masculinity, ennervating a once vigorous civilization, it is important that some among us continue to stand up and live, speak and think as men.” If this is the picture of manhood, and civilization, that younger men see, it seems fairly obvious that somewhere along the line the guardians of masculinity and manhood have been fools and swallowed something fairly destructive.

As part of the generation who probably dropped the ball more than any other, I am in a position to offer some insights into how and why that occured. However, a post-mortem on classical notions of manhood and masculinity would be nothing more than a pointless intellectual exercise, particularly for men, unless whatever understanding and insight comes from that is taken to the next step and forms the basis for some sort of action.

If there is one symptom of the malaise of modern manhood/masculinity which more than any other points to both the root of the problems and their potential solutions, it is the loss of the ability and desire to take action. Rich Zubaty wrote a book a few years ago entitled “Surviving the Feminization of America.” His message boils down to the concept which has been pushed for the past 40 years – that masculinity and men are bad and femininity and women are good and that all the problems of the world will be solved if only men will become women.

But, the problem is that the average woman who is not among the feminist policy makers is not a lesbian. If she wanted to be with a woman, she could choose to do so. Masculinity is the natural complement to femininity, and to the extent that women retain any sense of their own feminine natures, they prefer masculine men.

When Ferdinand speaks of “The Emptiness of Modern Manhood”, he invokes the imagery of a hollowed out shell. Certain surface trappings of manhood have been held onto by the social deconstructionists in collusion with the Social Conservatives, but they have hollowed out the heart of it, leaving a truly empty feeling shell. Obsessive-compulsive “chivalry” has dictated deference and special treatment for all women which was previously reserved for those women who had earned the right to be called “ladies.” Hint: this right was not earned by swearing like a sailor, dressing in a manner which would embarass anyone with both self-awareness and taste, or excusing boorish and excessive behavior by saying “well, men have been doing it for years.”

So, part of the problem with modern manhood which makes it feel empty to younger men is being required to treat with respect an entire group of people who have not earned it by acting in a respectable manner or by reciprocating that respect – a group of people who seem to feel entitled whatever they want for no other reason than having been born with a vagina. And, in allowing that to come about and continue, the people who allowed it have cheapened the entire concept of “respect” so that it no longer contains any aspects of excellence, or admirable qualities, or achievement. In short, people today demand respect not for anything they do, but simply for being – existing. Well, earthworms exist, but they are not particularly admirable creatures.

But, there is something in the masculine spirit which rebels against this – something deep down which knows that it is fundamentally, completely, perversely wrong; something which knows that anything unearned is nothing but alms. And to accept alms is to be a beggar and is a wound to the spirit.

The masculine spirit knows that something must be done to earn what one receives in order for it feel like an achievement, a reward for excellence, and something which is worthy of respect. The quarterback who scrambles, finds his receiver, connects with his pass, and the receiver who takes it into the end zone both have done something characteristically different than the waterboy sitting on the sidelines. And thus it is just and right that should be rewarded with more respect.

But, in today’s world, the opposite is the case. Those who have achieved nothing demand the same rewards as those who have, and blame their own failures on the successes and excellence of others.

“From each according to ability, to each according to need” is the ideology of a cancer cell. Yet, in much of today’s world people are punished according to their ability and rewarded according to their need. That is what has eaten the heart out of modern manhood – the demand that we respect what is not respectable, give what has not been earned, and feed the tumor before we feed the heart.

Yes, indeed, only a fool would swallow it. But, unfortunately a lot of fools did. And, a lot of younger men have been left with a sense of emptiness.

So, what do we do now? We stop being fools and stop swallowing it. We spit out the nonsense we have been fed back onto the plates where it came from. And, when we get those nasty disapproving looks from people because we have refused to allow them to socially pressure us into harming ourselves – we laugh in their faces.

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Monday, March 04, 2002

Zenpriest #63 - In a Bar Last Night: One Good Marriage and One Attention Whore

Last night I went to see a HS buddy of mine, who has become an absolutely amazing guitarist, playing in a local bar.  I got to see an interesting contrast between two very different types of women.

First, my buddy and his wife.  This is his third marriage.  He was a bit over 40 when they got married, and so far this one has lasted longer than his previous two combined – 13 years and counting.   He’s been playing guitar for about 40 years and while he was always an “adequate” guitarist, he was also a fairly pedestrian one – not really any better than thousands of other wannabe superstars out there.  But, something has happened to him recently – a quantum leap in his skill and subtlety.   There were times sitting there listening to him last night when he just blew me away.

I mentioned that fact to his wife sitting at the front and center table with me.  She said that he really took off a few years ago when he gave up being a plumber to devote full time to music.  She is actually the one who convinced him to do that, and said she would support him while he did.  Some months he makes a little more than she does now, and some months a little less.  One thing she said really struck me – “He believes in me and I believe in him, and we are in this together for the long haul.”

She is about as well-preserved as any woman in her early 50s I have ever met, and a truly delightful person to be with.  The old saying “Third time is the charm” certainly seems to apply in his case.

In the bar was another woman who made an interesting contrast to my buddy’s quietly attractive, supportive, wife.   She was 40-ish – actually could have been anywhere between mid 30s to late 40s.  She had that kind of generic American woman look about her.  She was reasonably attractive for a woman her age, but also had the air that she had put a lot of work into it.   The man she was with I assumed was her husband because they were both wearing rings.  He appeared to be a mid-level beta.  He was stockily built and looked like he did manual labor type of work, but was wearing a shirt that made it obvious his wife dressed him.  It had all kinds of embroidery on it, and a few sparkly somethings.  I’ve never met a man in my life who looked like him who would buy that kind of shirt for himself.

She was doing all kinds of signalling for attention:  flipping her hair, making expansive gestures with her arms, being all over him like a teenaged girl giddy over a date with the quarterback of the football team.  The music was so good that the band was holding everyone’s attention, so she had to up her game.  Despite the fact that this was a restaurant and there was no dance floor, she got up and started dancing solo (and not very well) right in front of the band.  When people still didn’t pay any attention to her and continued to watch, listen to, and enjoy the band, she started going up to the men at the first row of tables and saying something inane about herself.  The men would just flash her an empty smile and go back to watching the band.  The third time she approached me she escalated to arm and shoulder touching.

Meanwhile her husband continued to sit at the bar and just watch her.  I wondered what was going through his mind.  She obviously wasn’t getting enough traction that he could have been sitting there smugly thinking “You guys all want her, but she is going home with me.”  My guess is that this was standard enough behavior for her that he was just sitting there waiting for her to get it out of her system and come back to “papa.”

I looked over at my buddy’s wife who was watching her husband with obvious adoration in her eyes.  Every once in a while he would look at her from the stage with the same look.  They obviously have a good marriage – one of the few I have ever seen.  I would call my buddy almost an “Accidental Alpha.”  His wife clearly gets off on saying “I’m with the band, with the lead guitarist!”  I’m sure that she would not have beamed in the same way if she were standing outside of someone’s house pointing to him and saying “I’m with the plumber over there.”  She invested of herself in helping him achieve something that allowed her to be prouder of him, and got a lot of personal rewards from it.

His attention was all she needed.  She had no need to seek it from other men present.

The guy at the bar watching his attention-whore wife trying to get attention from other men wasn’t really a complete herb.  He looked like the kind of guy who would be great to knock back a few beers with, or the kind of guy you would want to know and be able to call on if you ran into a snag putting headers on your smallblock.

When the band got done with their gig I walked out of the bar thinking about the contrast between the two glimpses of marriages I’d seen.  I don’t really envy my buddy because he has earned his happiness by enduring 2 difficult marriages and raising a total of 7 kids.  He’s earned his happiness.

And, despite the fact that the attention seeker was above average in looks for a woman her age, I sure didn’t envy her husband.

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Sunday, March 03, 2002

Zenpriest #62 - The Hegelian Dialectic and Social Change

I’m going to take as a springboard this comment by Novaseeker -

QUOTE: "This is a time of great change and dislocation, to be sure.  But it is also our time, the time of our freedom, if we choose to recognize that and embrace it in our lives. We can be our future now, if we only have the courage to grasp that destiny with both hands and mold it as we wish."

I agree totally, but I think it also raises the question of “how”? How do we grasp that destiny, and how do we mold it? Do we simply make individual personal choices and have everyone else do the same? That would seem to me to be a state of cultural entropy in which culture simply continues down a path of progressive disorganization – the only possible end point of which is complete disorganization, or “chaos.”

Some may be familiar with what is called the “Hegelian Dialectic” and some may not, but it is a way of  describing the process of social change: description, not prescription. It is not saying how it “should” occur, but simply noting how it does.

In a terribly oversimplified version -

You start with existing conditions and social values which are defined by a majority or dominant group within a culture, and those conditions and values are generally thought to define the culture.   Hegel did not actually use the terms which are now most commonly associated with his description of the dialectic, but the term used now to describe the “status quo” is the “thesis”, the theory on which the culture is based.

However, those conditions and values, that thesis,  work best (or in some cases only) for the dominant group.  For other subgroups the thesis does not work so well so they come up with an opposing or alternate set of theories, called the “antithesis” (literally the anti-thesis), which functions as a counter-thesis.

These two competing theories struggle for dominance in the culture and  over time end up modifying each other and achieving compromises which are more workable and acceptable to both groups than either the thesis or the anti-thesis.  And, this stage is called “synthesis.”

Remember that this is a description of social change, which is constant.  So, the synthesis is not a steady state or a permanent solution, but instead becomes the thesis against which a new antithesis (counter thesis) arises.
So, if the 1950s and “Leave it to Beaver” and “Ozzie and Harriet” were the thesis, and 2nd wave feminism was the antithesis, and the synthesis of the two is the conditions in which we live today, it seems that it is time for a new antithesis – this time posed by men because the last one was posed by women.

Is the new anti-thesis Game?  Or is there more to it than that?  Are we cycling away from a purely theoretical approach to life exemplified by feminism toward a more pragmatic one like Game, or is Game simply a transition point on the way to a fully developed anti-thesis?  Is HBD actually the anti-thesis?

Some raw meat thrown out for the discussion minded…

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Saturday, March 02, 2002

Zenpriest #61 - Everyone Lives Through History, We Just Don't Realize It...

…until we have.

These are exciting times for men.

I know that statement will cause some people to snort and roll their eyes and start to think of all kinds of reasons that it is just plain crazy. There is a lot of gloom and doom being circulated about men and boys these days – “The Decline of Males”, “The End of Men”, the cackling of the pecking hens that men are “obsolete”  because some scientist has claimed to be able to produce sperm in a lab. Most of it comes from the necrotic husk of the has-been lame-stream media. Too much of it comes from men themselves.

I don’t buy it – any of it.

I think I’m the oldest contributor here. I have lived through what many of the  contributors here (and probably most of the readers) view as history and know of only through the same manner that they know of Ancient Greece, or the World Wars of the 20th century – from something they read or someone told them. The 1960s may not seem as remote as an ancient civilization, but from the perspective of a  participant-observer, I can tell you that a lot of what has been said and is being said about life 50 years ago is 190 proof horse manure.

Men’s lives in the 1950s and before were not all about the much mythologized “male power and privilege,” nor were woman anywhere near as “oppressed” as has been claimed. History is always revisionist, and the revision is always done by the victor. In considering the 2nd half of the 20th century, the ideology of feminism was clearly the victor.

But, other than the ability to dictate how things are spoken about, and what things can be said and what can’t, what did they “win.” I think the real answer turns out to be “nothing”, except perhaps the booby prize. See, men’s lives for most of history have been not about “power and privilege”, but rather about bone crushing and soul destroying work, huge responsibilities, and disposability.

There has been much buzz about the internet recently about the finding that women’s happiness has actually declined during the past 40 years that they have been “winning”, becoming “liberated”, and pursuing “having it all” – both in absolute terms, and relative to men. At the same time, men’s happiness has increased – both in absolute terms and relative to women.

Now, let me say that again, and really let it sink in – men today are happier than men were 40 years ago, and women are less happy. Lots of people have analyzed the hows and whys of that to the level of terminal boredom, but that one simple fact stands alone – men today, on the average and in the aggregate, are happier than their fathers and grandfathers were.


Well, it’s really pretty simple – men’s lives today are simply better than the lives their fathers, and grandfathers, and great-grandfathers, and all the men in history who lived and died before them. Life for men, in general, has never been better.

“What??!?!” you say. “How could that be?!!?! It’s just not so! The feminists have told me!”

One of the better musical poets of my generation, Bruce Springsteen, summed up very well what the lives of average men used to be like not very long ago, in his powerful song, “The River.”

“I come from down in the valley
where mister when you’re young
They bring you up to do like your daddy done.”

Mens’ lives were incredibly constrained. What your “daddy done” was most likely what you would end up doing, and your son, and his son. For the college educated and middle class, this usually took the form of some sort of business, mercantile, management, or professional white collar job. For the working class, it meant -

“Then I got Mary pregnant
and man that was all she wrote
And for my nineteenth birthday
I got a union card and a wedding coat”

A white collar boy/man might marry Sally instead of Mary, and a get clerkship in his father’s law office instead of a union card, but both classes of men had their life script handed to them about the end of their teens. And, all classes of men were expected to spend the vast majority of their waking lives working for someone else in order to live up to the protector/provider role which was most men’s alternative to being social non-entities. In those days, the only roles which gave men any social validity at all were husband, father, and wealthy man. In order for a single man to have any social acceptance at all, he damn well better be wealthy.

Well, fast forward 50 years and we find that men have far more freedom and flexibility than any group of men has ever had in the history of the world. They can now choose to be husbands, and/or fathers, or anything else, and the social pressure and stigma which used to force the vast majority of men into early marriage (and often early graves) and the role of a specialized beast of burden bred for the specific purpose of dragging around an emotionally and financially dependent wife and family is simply no longer there.

Certainly, some men might wish to continue to choose those roles for their lives.  And the social Luddites, who fear and resist change, may want to try to keep men trapped in those old roles. But, as women’s roles have changed, the system which gave men only one set of choices has changed whether people wanted it to or not.

Men may choose to be husbands and fathers. Or not. They can choose to be travelers, or explorers, or scholars, or X-box players. Or not. They can be househusbands, assuming they can find a breadwinning wife and are willing to deal with the residual social stigma toward a man who does not live up to the traditional roles. But, women have blazed the way in breaking down those old roles and in their place have left men a world of opportunities limited only by their own imaginations.

The real challenges confronting men these days are the topics Novaseeker and Prime have recently written about – defining core masculine values by which men define themselves. For too long men have been allowing women to define us – either in the negative, by giving a us a list of things they don’t like about us, or by  demanding that we become more like them. Some men are comfortable with becoming more like women, and we will see how women really end up liking them once the do.

But, for the rest of us, who have never had any desire to be women, we now have the opportunity to completely define for ourselves what sort of masculinity will serve us, and those we love, best in the coming years.

We men, right now, are living through history. To most of us, it just seems like our lives. But, as time passes our lives of today will become our context of tomorrow. And, our choices of today will shape the world that we and our children will live in tomorrow. And, in far less time than they can imagine, young men of today will have become the “older generation” of tomorrow and find to their surprise that those who came after them are now judging them based on the present they created for those next generations.

Instead of watching our feet, and looking behind us, and castigating the boomers for their mistakes, our best future lies in reclaiming our authenticity from those aspects of the culture which have become toxic. We need to do what the younger men here have started to do and realize that we no longer have sustainable values handed to us – as previous generations of men did – and that we must now create them. We can seize the day and take the best from the past ideals of masculinity, reclaim them from the dishonor which has fallen on them, and at the same time shed the worst aspects which have been the source of much of that dishonor.

More than at any other time in history, we have the ability to define not just our own presents, but our futures and the futures of those we care about.

Yes, indeed, these are exciting times for men.

We are confronted with insurmountable opportunities.

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Friday, March 01, 2002

Zenpriest #60 - Why There Never Has Been Any Coherent "Men's Movement" and Why There Never Will Be

Involuntary Celibate (Incel) QUOTE: "I thought the division here was between PUAs and non-PUAs. But now I see this is wrong. People are motivated by personal experience. There are two types of personal experiences that make men MGTOW. One is being screwed over by the system, divorced. The other is being universally rejected by women (in the femisphere). It is sad that most men of the divorced group are so incapable or unwilling to understand the men of the rejected group. I now understand that these divorced men are not my allies, they are not on my side."

And, once again, here is why there never has been any coherent "men's movement" and never will be. Women who detest everything about another woman will still stand with her as a woman against all men, while men will argue each other to death over such weighty issues as "boxers or briefs" or "paper or plastic."

Men, in general, seem so obsessed with dividing the world into "us" and "them" that the inevitable end point of the process seems to boil down to "me" and "them".

There are far more than just two types of motivations for a man to unplug and decide to go his own way. And, there is no "the" division among the men on this board - there are thousands of divisions, even though we only have a little over 100 members.

MGTOW is not any sort of "movement", or at least no sort of mass or unified movement - just like the so-called "marriage strike" is no sort of strike at all, but the visible result of millions of men turning off to the idea of marriage, and becoming so disgusted with women who have the EMF (Entitlement Materialist Feminist) mentality that dealing with them is so unpleasant that aversion to them is stronger than the normal biological drive and attraction.

That alone says a lot about the quality of women we have as our possible choices of mates.

"Understanding" does not equal getting down with someone in their self-pity pot and wallowing in it with them. If that is how they want to spend their time, they are welcome to do that, but the rest of us have better things to do with our time and our lives.

I think there is a third group which is far larger among MGTOW than either of those mentioned above - men who realized that the system was rigged against them and opted out of playing the rigged game.

I have a certain degree of empathy for divorced men who have been screwed over by the system, but it is limited. The signs have been out there in the culture for more than 30 years indicating where this is all headed. Men who ignored those signs, or were too thick to realize what they meant, had the chance to avoid what ended up happening to them, but chose not to. I saw those signs and have avoided most of the negative consequences of dealing with EMF women, and don't see any reason why they couldn't have done the same.

Yes, I agree that the system has mightily fucked them over. What I do not understand is why so many of them continue to support and defend the very system which did fuck them over.

I view the whole marriage/fatherhood and even dating issue much like I view the de-criminalization of marijuana. Marriage and fatherhood have been criminalized, and those who go ahead and choose to do it are doing it at their own risk. A lot of people take the same approach to smoking pot - they do it, and hope that they are one of the ones who get away with it without getting caught.

But, there is also a group of us for which the legal deterrent is significant enough to encourage us to refrain. Particularly when past experience with the criminalized activity has convinced us that it is marginally worth continuing even without the legal risk.

Now, there are a lot of issues on which I disagree with [certain member here]. But none of them are significant enough to be worth putting energy into creating conflict about and risking polarization because there is a far greater number of issues on which we are in total agreement. Since those are major issues for men, it makes more sense to spend time and energy looking for ways to cooperate and strengthen each other's efforts, instead of wasting a lot of time and energy, and creating animosity, by trying to prove to each other that we are right and he is wrong.


QUOTE: "Well this clarifies things, quite a bit.On the one hand we have the people who are worried about men's rights -- yes, the "system", the law, what it does to men in the workplace, in the family, in the school system, title ix and so on. Men's rights.

On the other hand we have whining little boys who never figured out how to get laid. MRA/MGTOW and so on is not about "I can't get laid, waaaah". No-one has the right to be chosen by women for relationships.

Whining about women's choices is insane. They are going to choose who they want, these days, and you can either become that, or avoid them, or go someplace where they make different choices.

Men need to realize this: women's behavior in the west is not going to change. At least not anytime soon."


Forty years ago, when I first encountered feminism, it seemed to me like a bunch of spoiled brats whining that they weren't getting their way and wanting the whole world to change so that they got what they wanted without having to follow the path everyone else had had to follow in order to get that.

Women wanted into the workplace, and a lot of men said "We don't think you really want that - the workplace is a pretty nasty and unpleasant place to be." But the women screamed "PATRIARCHY" and claimed that they were tough and could take it "just like a man" and could do anything a man could do, so they got let in and the first thing they started doing was screaming "But, this place isn't WOMAN FRIENDLY!!!!"

Um, no, it isn't. We told you that. That is why we said we didn't think you would like it.

Recent history since then has been one long push to legally require the world to change its nature to give women what they want and demand. It has only worked to a limited extent.

One of the fundamental foundations of feminism is absolute flat denial that there is such a thing as biological reality. We are seeing manifestations of that today with middle-aged women whining that they can't have children because they pissed away their most fertile years chasing careers and banging thugs.

It is that idea that the world is responsible for giving someone what they want, no matter how stupidly and stubbornly they deny reality, which is what I have been fighting against as I have fought against feminist thought.

So, yes, I have absolutely no empathy for men who engage in the same sort of thinking. When I saw it starting to emerge among men, I knew that I had lost everything I had been fighting for, and mostly quit being any sort of MRA.

QUOTE: "As for the system, those are other, legal issues, and they can be changed at least a bit on the margins. Unlikely, but much easier to do than changing the entire culture. And so that's what MRAs do. I don't think there's much hope of success, because men are too disunited (look at this forum) and women don't care about things until it directly impacts them."

And there, in 10 concise words, is the sum of the entire issue, the answer, and what needs to be our entire strategy. When this mess starts to directly and signifcantly hurt women, then and only then will they become motivated to do anything about it. And, when it does start to hurt them, men would not be able to do anything to stop them, even if men wanted to, and men won't have to do jack shit because women are champion whiners and naggers and men aren't even in the bush league.

QUOTE: "If you're not getting laid, there are things you can do about that -- you have options. Deal with them. You only get to live once, and being pissed that you were born at the wrong time is a piss-poor way to go through life."

When I first heard the insane notion that women in western cultures were "oppressed", I laughed it off. One of my favorite counter-examples when they bring up "male privilege" is the Battle of the Somme in WWI. Over a million men were dead, wounded, missing, or captured - most of them young, and most of them virgins.

So, yes, sorry I don't see "not getting laid" while living in a land of unbelievable luxury (by historical standards), being largely safe and free of the threat of conscription to force them to go to some foreign country to shiver in the mud and die or have their body torn apart, as being the worst thing that men have ever had to endure.

I can just imagine one of those scared boys, only a few weeks off the farm, whining to his commanding officer - "hey, those guys over there are shooting at me."

And, his commander replying "Well, yes they are, son. Now, what are you going to do to make sure you aren't on the receiving end of one of those bullets?"

There is a great old saying - "I was sad because I had no shoes, until I met a man who had no feet."

Every spiritual tradition has some form of "count your blessings." I'm sure that is because humans have a tendency to obsess about what they don't have that they want, and completely forget about how much they do have and how good their life really is.


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Thursday, February 28, 2002

Zenpriest #59 - The Most Important Lesson a Man Can Ever Learn

QUOTE: "When one considers that one must "game" a woman, even your wife, in order to keep her around, then it also means that you must always be operating at a "higher level" than her. It totally negates the whole notion of having a "soul-mate" and means that on many levels, a man will always be alone."

That is probably the most important lesson a man can ever learn.

Intimacy with a woman is impossible if you have any interest in being her lover. If you are fine with being one of her grrrlfriends, and don't mind the stupid messed up games women run on them, then you can share to your heart's content - and will always be on the LJBF ladder.

The fundamental problem with today's concept of marriage is that it seems both men and women expect their spouse to be all things to them - lover, confidante, helpmate, "soulmate", co-housekeeper, and co-wage-earner. With so many role demands, it is inevitable that everyone will fail at some of them. That is why the old division of roles worked fairly well for most people - each could concentrate on a few things they were good at, and leave the rest to the other person.

The fundamental dilemma for men is that as they age they slow down. They get tired and sometimes need someone to lean on. Marriage 1.0 worked fairly well in this regard, as it also worked for women who had lost all their physical attractiveness. If they had managed to become friends and partners in the early years, that would often carry them through the aging years when neither of them had what it took to find and snare a new partner.

Under the new rules of marriage 2.0 a man has a choice - being alone in an expensive manner, or a not-so-expensive manner. The loneliest men I know are married men trapped in a loveless marriage to a perpetually complaining slug who they nevertheless have to enslave themselves to support. I look at their lives and they are as good a definition of hell as I need. Alone = freedom.

The tiny crumbs of affection that WW dole out today are priced way way over what they are worth.

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Further Reading:

Zenpriest #20 – There Is Nothing More Lonely Than Being With Someone You Cannot Talk To


"The average woman is not strategically capable of bringing down the most tempting game within her purview, and must thus content herself with a second, third, or nth choice.... A few women, true enough, are so pertinacious that they prefer defeat to compromise. That is to say, they prefer to put off marriage indefinitely rather than to marry beneath the highest leap of their fancy. But such women may be quickly dismissed as abnormal, and perhaps as downright diseased in mind; the average woman is well-aware that marriage is far better for her than celibacy, even when it falls a good deal short of her primary hopes, and she is also well aware that the differences between man and man, once mere money is put aside, are so slight as to be practically almost negligible. Thus the average woman is under none of the common masculine illusions about elective affinities, soul mates, love at first sight, and such phantasms. She is quite ready to fall in love, as the phrase is, with any man who is plainly eligible, and she usually knows a good many more such men than one...  

Here we have a sufficient explanation of the general superiority of bachelors, so often noted by students of mankind—a superiority so marked that it is difficult, in all history, to find six first-rate philosophers who were married men. The bachelor's very capacity to avoid marriage is no more than a proof of his relative freedom from the ordinary sentimentalism of his sex—in other words, of his greater approximation to the clear headedness of the enemy sex." -- H.L. Mencken

Wednesday, February 27, 2002

Zenpriest #58 - The MRM's Perpetual War With Itself

QUOTE: "Actually, the whole black MRA thing on youtube is at war right now."

The whole MRA-etc. thing is at war right now - not just the black part of it. The issue of "Game" has just exploded of late, with lots and lots of guys weighing in on it. I've maintained all along that men would end up adapting to the changes in women - in ways that women were not going to like a whole lot. Women tried to shift the system so that everything tilted their way, so men are learning how to game the system.

Us old time MRAs probably have a blind spot when it comes to "unity." For so man years there were so few of us crying in the wilderness that we thought the only way we would ever make any headway was to try to get men to unify in the way that women always unify against men in their women-first-ism.

MGTOW got articulated when a few of us began to think that men would NEVER, EVER, EVER, YES NOT NEVER get unified. If you get enough men whose only thing in common is that they do not support the system, that will weaken the system even if the opposition is not unified. But, a lot of guys came to MGTOW still stuck in the old way of thinking and kept saying "we've got to get other guys to join us."

I've reached the point where I don't think that is needed. Anarchy and chaos are just as threatening to the system as organized resistance - and a lot harder to fight.

What I am seeing now is lots of individual men, and a few identifiable groups, attacking the system. They aren't cooperating with anyone else, but I don't think that really matters - with the system being attacked on a lot of fronts simultaneously, it will get weakened and eventually fall.

A lot of MRAs - maybe most of those who apply that term to themselves - basically hold feminist values -- "equality." They/we tend to be older and many are the ones who went along with early feminism due to the promise it would liberate men as well. At some point, they woke up to the fact that feminism was never about "equality", but wanted to go ahead and finish the job that the feminists started.

A lot of the men I am seeing show up now are a new and different breed. They don't care much that there are no DV shelters for men, because they pretty much reject all the liberal values of the boomers. They are just looking out for #1.

It wouldn't have been my first choice of how things would work out, but I do think it is better than what we have seen for the past 45-50 years.

QUOTE: "We all have different views, I guess thats the underlying prinicple of MGTOW but shouldnt we have the wellbeing of ALL other menin a female society at heart? Be he white, black, yellow, blue whatever? I personally am batting for all men opposed to feminist doctrine. If we are all supposed to batting for ourselves then why are we all here in this online commuity?"

MRAs have been attacking each other since the 1970s. That is nothing new. I've lost track of the number of men's groups, lists, and boards that I have been part of - I know that it is well over 100 - and it is very rare that they grow over about 50 active members before they start tearing themselves apart with internal conflict. We've just had an example of it here with the sudden introduction of the "incel" concept which in short order led to a suggestion to split the board.

MRAs are already "marginalized." In some respects that is to our advantage because no one takes us seriously and they don't pay much attention to what we do.

Certainly, I would like to see men get their shit together and mount some sort of organized resistance to the creeping totalitarianism being pushed by women. But, they haven't so far and there seem to be some very persistent reasons why they haven't. We seem to be hard-wired to compete with each other, and struggle and conflict come so naturally that cooperation takes more effort than most men are capable of.

What is more worrisome to me than some guy shooting off his mouth and upsetting some other guys, is the fact that so many men seem to be waiting for some sort of Moses to lead us out of our wilderness. I've reached the point where I am certain that there ain't no one going to "do it for me", nor are they going to listen much to me when I try to communicate my own vision. That leaves me to put it to work in my own life, and leave other men to do the same.

As long as someone is hacking away at the perverse trend which has taken over the culture, I'm content to let him keep at it - knowing that I don't want to join him in his ideas, and he won't join me in mine. But, we do have a common enemy and as long as we are both attacking it, we are "working together" in what is perhaps the only way possible for men today.


Further Reading:

The History of MGTOW

A Leading Philosophy Rather Than a Leader

MGTOW is also Men Going The Right Way


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Tuesday, February 26, 2002

Zenpriest #57 - Personal Attacks and Mind Games

QUOTE: "If anyone knows who wrote [The Feminist Shaming Tactics Catalog], I'd love to give credit where it’s due."

The author is a fellow who went by the handle of JadedGuy on Mancoat, and currently has the blog "Biblical Manhood" where I believe he calls himself Anakin Niceguy.

As useful as this has been for men, I have already noticed that women are adapting. I have been suggesting for some time that men anticipate this and up their side of the confrontation.

These really are "tactics", and those familiar with military terms will know that "tactics" are individual actions executed within an overall strategy, and strategies themselves are engaged in to support a goal or objective.

The goal, of course is to keep men silenced and refuse to hear what they are saying, the strategy is to twist the message so that it becomes about the man himself rather than what he is saying, and the tactic is person attacks and mind games.

From our side, I suggest strategically going on the counter-offensive. The reason that shaming tactics are so effective is that they trigger the reflex to go on the defensive and attempt to either deny or justify the accusation - in effect validating it.

eg. "You all just hate women.
response: "I don't hate women, I love women."

No matter what a man says at this point, he has lost the conversation because the woman has stolen it from him and made it about him rather than about the issues.

That is why I suggest calling them "personal attacks and mind games" instead of "shaming tactics" or "shaming language." Point out that the person is simply attacking you personally, for the purpose of changing the subject. This puts them on the defensive. Then, go on to restate your point. If they engage in another personal attack on you, simply point that out again, along with the fact that you have already pointed it out.

Remember that the objective is NEVER to convert the person you are arguing with - always, always, ALWAYS play to the lurkers. If you can keep control of the conversation, and make the feminist look foolish and hypocritical, as well as malicious, you will sway far more sympathy to your position than if you allow them to sucker you into chasing your own tail with attacks and mind games they don't believe but use because they have been proven to be so effective at confusing men and forcing them to give up.


Further Reading:

Social Strategy: How Men And Women Are After Different Things When They “Debate”


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Monday, February 25, 2002

Zenpriest #56 - MGTOW's Trademark Copyright Philosophy

QUOTE: "Mind if I work those sentiments into the series?"

Not at all. You've not been around long enough to have heard my standard "tgc public use license" spiel - Any so-called "men's movement", in order to be effective, will necessarily be decentralized, have no formal organization, and be entirely voluntary and viral in nature. The existing power structures support feminism because feminism supports the existing power structures and demands their growth.

I do not subscribe to the concept of "intellectual property" because I cannot claim that any idea I've had or expressed is purely original and came from nowhere besides my own brilliance.

I have some real heartburn with guys who try to copyright or trademark essential ideas - which men might use to improve their conditions - in order to make a quick buck. Phil McGraw and Warren Farrell are simply different points on the same spectrum.

All that being said, any MRA is welcome and granted a perpetual license to use or reuse anything I have ever said without wasting both of our time by asking me - as long as it is used to further the interests of men - with or without attribution, and preferably without.

Here is why - feminism was unleashed like a disease on an unsuspecting world. No woman claims ownership of the "69 cents" lie, or the "1 in 4" lie, so women in general own it and every woman out there will argue it as if it were her very own idea - because she believes it is. Men have to start doing the same. I would love nothing more than millions of men repeating ideas that I have articulated, and believing that they are their own ideas and they cooked them up their own clever selves.

MRAs are in general too damn polite. Scumbags will rip off anyone else's idea and try to make a buck off it, MRAs will stand around being "polite" and not do something which might help men because..., well because there might be something not-polite in there somewhere.

QUOTE: "I can't seem to find a way to contact this fellow through blogger. Do you know of any way i can contact him? i just prefer to be up front about this sorta thing, I just wanna avoid accusations of plagiarism, i think online the best way to do that is by going above and beyond to give credit where its due."

Don't be so fuckin' polite. Damn few MRAs have ever made one cent from being MRAs, and a lot of of us use pseudonyms purely because we avoid the limelight rather than seek it. I've had lots of conversations with JadedGuy and I can tell you that he would 1000 times rather that the ideas get picked up and spread among men and that they would catch on than he cares one shred about "credit." He is on at least his third or fourth blog (the previous one was "Scripturally Single", and I'm not sure what the one before that was called, I just remember that there was one.) He re-invents himself every couple of years, anyway.

The whole concept of Men Going Their Own Way came out of discussions on Mancoat about 3-4 years ago. Some of us long term activists were discussing if men would ever manage to get their shit together to mount any sort of organized pushback against femi-fascism. The consensus was that they never would, and it was observed that what was really already happening was that massive numbers of men were simply unplugging from the system of social values which was screwing them over and defining their own values for proceeding with their lives - Going Their Own Way. JadedGuy was as much a part of these discussions as anyone, and he clearly understands that aspect of needing to give ownership of any "men's movement" to any man willing to get off his ass and ”Shovel the Fuckin’ Gravel.”
The biggest challenge to the MRM is getting out of neutral - it has remained stalled for more than 40 years. One big part of this is that men have become passive as they have become feminized, and most boards have plenty of suggestions of great ideas for SOMEONE ELSE to make happen.

Which leads to another really good contribution by JadedGuy - "to suggest is to volunteer."

You are shoveling some gravel in making this happen. You have volunteered. Not one of us will do anything to hold you back.

Go for it.

Further Reading:

Zenpriest #8 - The Big Truth

The History of MGTOW


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