Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Three Unexamined Assumptions in The Theory Of Male-Incels-As-Unserved-Customers-In-The-Sexual-Marketplace

1.  The smelly debate about incels (the involuntarily celibate, but only male), mass killings (by the incels, as defined above) and  the market place for sex (as a description of all heterosexual partnering!)  is based on this implicit assumption which needs to be made explicit:

That there are now many more young male incels than in the past???

I have seen no data on that, but the marriage rates do not support that assumption.  It's quite possible that the number of men who can't get unhindered access to the exact pussy they think they deserve has stayed fairly constant over time.  Only now that group is much more vocal and vicious, at least online.

It also has the support of such deep thinkers as Jordan Peterson, who has recommended enforced monogamy as the solution to this lack-of-pussy problem. So the most unbalanced incels now get validation not only from their fellow-sufferers, but from conservative mega-stars!

That validation even extends to at least "understanding" how violence is the predictable response from these newly created vast masses of incels.  I looked at Peterson's own website (Google Peterson and enforced monogamy) where he attacks the recent NYT article on his opinions and explains to us why everything he says is just recommending your ordinary monogamy because it keeps men from killing so much.  As compared to a system where a small percentage of men hoard all women, just to be clear*.

2.  It's all science based, mind you, and Peterson proves it by quoting the thoughts of such eminent evolutionary psychologists as Daly and Wilson and Buss.  Buss, for example, has argued that women are hard-wired for hypergamy, always going for the top guys in the hierarchy, and Peterson takes this argument for evidence**.

There's a difference between a theory and evidence, by the way, though that  eludes professor Peterson here***.

Indeed, the whole incel debate is based on very little evidence of any kind, but many, many hidden assumptions, and one of those really is the assumption that some minority of men is currently monopolizing all women, and that this is because women are hard-wired to go for high status men only.

And alternative theories can explain why historically speaking women have tended to want to marry up in the hierarchies of education or income:

The simplest one points out that in the past it was largely men who had legal access to higher education or greater wealth or incomes.  This left marriage one of the only ways for women to improve their economic position.  Thus, it's not necessary to assume that women have little gold-digger genes inside their brains to explain why we would find hypergamy among women in the past.

3.  You may have noticed how the problem of involuntary celibacy is framed as a purely heterosexual male problem.  It's a problem of not enough pussy for men.

In reality,  the majority of those who are celibate but would prefer not to be are quite likely to be women.  That is because women, on average, tend to outlive their partners, and because there are also younger women, not just younger men, who cannot find  sexual partners.

The online incels don't care about those women's access to sex, both because for them women are mere objects to be desired and hated, but also because of the basic evolutionary psychology framework the incel world is built on.  Peterson uses the same framework, both on his site and in his recent book:

The assumption that ONLY women make choices about their sexual partners, and that ONLY women, therefore, have the power to reject.

Men, on the other hand, are always willing to f**k anything that breathes, I guess?

It would be fun to see how all those sexual marketplace conservatives would react if we started demanding a fairer distribution of male bodies for all those older female incels.  While the terminology of sexual markets may initially seem gender-neutral, in practice what those guys worry about is access to pussy.


I wrote this yesterday before a migraine attack felled me for sixteen hours.  On re-reading it, I wonder what made me bother.  Was it my pre-migraine state? 

I get that I'm trying to point out how my long-term focus on bad evolutionary psychology has had an important point, how ignoring the problems in that approach has turned it into the basic philosophy of incels and most of the woman-hating sites, and how we now see it applied to real living people, with bad consequences.

I can also see how not thinking carefully about facts and statistics allows the incel sites to believe their weird theories, in particular if they never go out and try to actually date women or see, outside in flesh-space,  how all sorts of people, many not physically attractive based on our cultural standards, are happily paired and have children.

And it's frightening that a wide debate about the incels can go on without, seemingly, any actual data about how common being a young male incel today is, as compared to the past.  It's hair-raisingly frightening that gurus such as Peterson can calmly argue that mass violence is a natural reaction to blue balls in young men.

It's also disheartening that Peterson's arguments for the return of what essentially amounts to patriarchy is viewed by many as a message from a prophet.

But still. Anyway, here it is, and I hope it will keep my chattering inner muse Erato (he with the sexy tattoos and wild nose rings) silent for a few days.


*  Which, weirdly, he assumes to be the prevailing situation in the US and Canada?  Or does he?  I'm not sure.  But it's worth pointing out that we do have socially enforced monogamy in those countries.  Polygamy is frowned upon, and the majority of people either marry at some point or enter a long-term relationship with one other person.

**  As do all the online incels.  It's the few lucky Chads (high status men) who have so much sex with all the Tracys (desirable women with big boobs) that the Tracys are used up (though not the Chads) and have stretched out pussies by the age thirty when the incels are expected to marry these leftovers.

***  Several studies show that mate preferences between men and women are becoming more similar (and quite rapidly) in the more gender-egalitarian countries (where women can more easily acquire wealth in ways other than through marriage) .  This is direct evidence against the assumption that hypergamy is hard-wired in female brains.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Spurned Advances Provoked Texas School Shooting? My Take.

Spurned advances provoked Texas school shooting, victim's mother says

That's the recent Reuter's headline on the Santa Fe butchery.  The story itself has more:

Sadie Rodriguez, the mother of Shana Fisher, 16, told the newspaper that her daughter rejected four months of aggressive advances from accused shooter Dimitrios Pagourtzis, 17, at the Santa Fe high school.
Fisher finally stood up to him and embarrassed him in class, the newspaper quoted her mother as writing in a private message to the Times.

“A week later he opens fire on everyone he didn’t like,” she said. “Shana being the first one.”
Rodriguez could not independently be reached for comment.
If true, it would be the second school shooting in recent months driven by such rejection.
In March, a 17-year-old Maryland high school student used his father’s gun to shoot and kill a female student with whom he had been in a recently ended relationship.

The bolds are mine.  And so is the ice-cold rage such careless writing provokes in me.  In fact, it drives me into writing this response:

Friday, May 18, 2018

Last Day of My Fund-Raising Week. A Gratitude Post.

Cool slithery snake energy* to all who have donated already!   There's still time!

If I were good at the self-marketing business, I would paint myself as the last bulwark (like that word!) against the chaos of multiple Jordan Petersons, the last tiny sane voice online, the last person mutilating the English language on a daily basis, the last goddess still being worshiped.

But I am terrible at marketing.  So just give already.  Don't give if you have no money.  You can tell me how wonderful I am instead.

More seriously, my thanks to you all, both for reading, for thinking, for educating me, for arguing,  and for giving me chocolate money.


* This can be used for health or for avoiding tricky situations or even for getting boring chores to go faster.

On Lobsters, Dragons And Witches. More Jordan Peterson!

This is a good article on Jordan Peterson and on  his slightly-inebriated-prophet style of speaking and thinking. 

Peterson is the adored father figure of zillions of young conservative (mostly white) men, because he tells them that patriarchal hierarchies are fair, based on competence and that women are biologically unsuited to climb them.

That removes half the competition.  Then all those men need to do is to clean their rooms, stand straight, and speak the truth.  That last bit seems to include telling women that they belong at home.

If you would like to learn more about Prophet Peterson, this is a good first post.  My three-part book review of his best-selling tome begins here.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Day Six of My Fund-Raising Week: On Bolton's Smart Choices And Trump's Smart Utterances.

1.  The midterm elections are coming.  It's therefore logical that 

The White House eliminated the position of cybersecurity coordinator on the National Security Council on Tuesday, doing away with a post central to developing policy to defend against increasingly sophisticated digital attacks and the use of offensive cyber weapons.

A memorandum circulated by an aide to the new national security adviser, John R. Bolton, said the post was no longer considered necessary because lower-level officials had already made cybersecurity issues a “core function” of the president’s national security team.
Cybersecurity experts and members of Congress said they were mystified by the move, though some suggested Mr. Bolton did not want any competitive power centers emerging inside the national security apparatus.
The decision was criticized by Mark R. Warner, a senator from Virginia and the ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee. “I don’t see how getting rid of the top cyber official in the White House does anything to make our country safer from cyber threats,” he wrote on Twitter.

Bolton may, indeed, have higher priorities than the security of US elections (such as being the biggest fish in his pond), especially when the likely outsider influence would not hurt his party.   But yeah, he may also not be aware of the severity of cyber threats.

But whatever Bolton's rationalizations might be, this particular decision looks awful to those who prefer democracy to dictatorships or kleptocracies.

2.   And the president of the United States speaks.  If it's possible to return to a more adult and courteous political discourse one day, this era will provide rich mining for those who wish to do doctoral theses on the worst statements of American presidents.  That's the silver lining to the Trump cloud.

3.   A picture of my pear galette should go here, to make you more likely to give me your hard-earned moneys.  But alas, it has been eaten.

Instead, have a cat picture

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Day Five of The Fund-Raising Week. What You Don't Know Can't Hurt You?

1.  Here's another of those hidden foundation cracks the Trump administration is causing by demolishing the government:

The Trump administration has killed NASA's Carbon Monitoring System, which was responsible for compiling data from separate satellite and aircraft measurements of CO2 and methane emission across the Earth.
This program allowed scientists to have a picture of the flow of carbon all over Earth.

This move will make it harder for nations to be able to verify that quotas are being met according to the promises in the Paris climate accords. Every nation on Earth, except the US, is part of the accord.
This is acting like a father/mother who does not wish to know about his/her child's high fever so destroys the thermometer.  Well, actually it's worse, because it is all about short-term profit at the expense of the future survival of human civilizations.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Is Even One Mass Killing By Guns Proof That Gun Control Does Not Work? Day Two of Fund-Raising Week.

Why would the shooting deaths of seven people (six of them apparently killed by the seventh in what is so quaintly called domestic violence) in Australia (far away) end up on the pages of  the New York Times?  And why were those same deaths trending on Facebook in the US?

The answer, my friends, lies in Australian history about gun control and what that stricter gun control history could teach Americans:

The deaths represent the worst mass shooting in Australia since 1996, when a gunman killed 35 people in Port Arthur, Tasmania. That event was the catalyst for a significant strengthening of the country’s gun laws an ambitious gun buyback program.

American proponents of gun control, including former President Barack Obama, often point to Australia’s strict regulations and few mass shootings as a guide to limiting such events in the United States. But in the hours after the shooting in Osmington, those who oppose such strict regulations pointed to the tragedy as proof of gun control’s limits — prompting many Australians to argue against that conclusion.

It's not just the limits of gun control that was pointed out in various Facebook posts.  Rather, many used this awful killing in Australia as proof that gun control doesn't work at all.

I get that when people argue politics they often use dirty weapons and illogical tricks and do not care.  Finding even one mass killing as proof that gun control does not work would be such an illogical trick, because the correct comparison would be to juxtapose the Australian and US historical statistics about mass killings, the availability of guns and so on, and then use those properly controlled comparisons to see how many excess mass killings by guns the US might have because of its much laxer gun policies*.

But it's not at all uncommon to find people, in general,  using individual anecdotes to try to prove something about statistical averages.  All an individual anecdote can prove, if true, is that at least one such event happened.  It tells us nothing about average propensities. 

Similarly, many people simply assume that their circle of friends, acquaintances and relatives are representative of all Americans, and that this allows them to judge the validity of various statistical averages which pertain to the whole country.  But very few of us have a random sample from the whole country among our acquaintances.

Many also ignore the "all other things constant**" part of various comparisons in studies and in how to interpret various news items.   Here's one example of that (scroll down), but it also applies much more widely.

For instance, when progressives and liberals want to see if people from different demographic groups are treated equally fairly in, say, jobs, the people to be compared should be similar in other relevant ways except their demographic group memberships.  That could include education and work experience, as one example, unless unfair earlier treatment has caused those to differ between demographic groups.

And this post (go down to 4.) discusses a few other fairly common (but interesting) interpretation problems.


*  Note the question I asked there.  If our question is about general gun deaths then the answer may be more complicated, because most gun deaths are not mass killings but individual murders or suicides.

** The ceteris paribus assumption of economics, say, where our goal is to get as close as possible to analyzing a question in such a way that the only variable allowed to differ is the one we wish to analyze.  We can literally hold other variables constant in laboratory studies and some audit studies, but in most observational studies the control is achieved (if only partially) through statistical methods of analysis. 

Friday, May 11, 2018

Time To Pay The Piper

That would be me, the piper, and this is the beginning of my annual fund-raising week for this blog and its expenses.

You can donate via PayPal, as explained in the left column, or if you wish to use other means (such as would be needed in shipping a Maserati or the property rights to a solitary island with a lighthouse or emeralds), kindly send me an e-mail.

If you don't have money don't worry.  If you do have money, though, please consider contributing.  My blog has a unique voice, right? 

My warmest thanks to all my readers.  Here's a picture of one of my plantings which nature decided not to sabotage: