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July 17, 2008

Un-PC Reading 2: F. Roger Devlin

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

Installment Two in my Un-PC Reading series. (Installment One is back here.) This time around: an essay for all those who have explored Roissy's blog, or who have read up a bit on "Game," and who have wondered how and when relations between the sexes in this country became so hostile and abrasive.

The topic is the neocon writer Wendy Shalit, who made a name for herself dissenting from feminist orthodoxy and praising sexual modesty. The author is F. Roger Devlin.

What may initially baffle some readers is that Devlin, who is harshly critical of Shalit, dumps on her not from a libertarian or a leftie point of view but from a paleoconservative one. For Devlin, Shalit doesn't go or see far enough -- and not only that, she's a silly and vain twit.

I link to the piece here not to have a laugh at Shalit (though Devlin is quite funny about her narcissism and her intellectual shortcomings) but because I found Devlin's more general discussion -- his survey of the state of things between the sexes, and his analysis of how matters got this way -- amazingly interesting.

Thanks to a 2Blowhards visitor who signs his comments "anon" for the link to Devlin's essay. If I remember right, The Man Who Is Thursday has also enjoyed Devlin's writing.

Oh, and "Un-PC"? Well, the essay's scathing view of feminism is part of that. But the tender of soul and the noble of nature deserve a warning too: F. Roger Devlin has published pieces in the notorious Occidental Quarterly, which is often described as a White Nationalist site.

What are Devlin's views on racial matters? Beats me. Is Devlin a noxious and despicable person? Perhaps he is, and perhaps all he really deserves is shunning. But the three essays of his that I've read on the state of affairs between the sexes have been awfully smart and provocative. Download 'em all here. For what appear to be a couple of recent pieces, read "Home Economics" parts one and two. Why doesn't Devlin maintain his own website?

I trust, by the way, that visitors to 2Blowhards have the subtlety to understand that linking is not endorsing, and to notice that I've nowhere indicated that I agree with all or even most of Devlin's points. I am happy to say, though, that I found the three Devlin essays that I've read daring and even enlightening, and that I've enjoyed thinking them over.

Where do you think Devlin makes a decent point? Where in your opinion does he go awry?

And how do you feel / what do you think about the idea of reading a piece by someone who has written for The Occidental Quarterly? Am I an irresponsible blogger for having linked to the likes of Devlin? Or are those who won't take a flyer on some far-out reading the real fools?

What I'm really curious about, though, is people's reactions to Devlin's ideas about feminism and the sexes. Still: If you want to raise objections to my linking to Devlin in the first place, go right ahead. But don't just hold your nose. Supply some reasons.

Semi-Related: Back here I recalled how extreme some of the rhetoric of '70s and post-'70s feminism has been. 2Blowhards interviewee Hannah -- who spoke to us (part one, part two) about getting raped as an undergraduate in the 1970s -- recalled that she and her college gal-buddies entered school assuming that '70s feminism had already run its course. Arts and Letters Daily links to a scattershot but amusing Sandra Tsing Loh article about how it has finally occurred to some elite-class women that jobs aren't meant to be all fun, glamour, and self-fulfillment.

Best,

Michael

posted by Michael at July 17, 2008




Comments

BOO-YAH!

Seriously, though, a girl can't be talked to that way and respond like a guy would -- like, "Y'know, you're right. I've got to suck it up, give 110%, and do what I was meant to do!"

Since he's not a moron, we conclude that he's giving a pep talk to a guy audience. That's fine, but eventually someone has to re-process that for digestion by females.

You ever tried to coach girls in some way? I tutored them, and you have to be very careful about how you phrase things when you push them to do more, try harder, etc., or else they're completely shut down. I wish I could be as frank as I am with guys, but that's out of my hands.

He's right to strike at their insecurities to wake them up, but he's too abrasive: "who are you kidding? Mr. Tall Dark and Handsome would never commit to you." You can convey that idea in a laughing, mock-scolding tone, using somewhat gentler words, and as long as you say it over and over, they'll take it more to heart than the above.

It's like how you have to say "You're not getting any younger" in a drawn-out, play-teasing way, with your eyebrows raised and face turned to one side but eyes facing straight, and with a social smile. "Well y'knoooow, you're not getting any younnnnnngerrrrrr...." Then she'll say or think "Oh, I know I know I knoooow" in a guilty way.

That's what girls respond to: teasing words from smiling mouths. Peer pressure. You'd better make sure you're talking to an alpha-female before you bear down on her; these ones do respond to "suck it up and go do it" pep talks.

If she doesn't respond to either type of pep talk, she's a lost cause, unmarriageable in any society.

Posted by: agnostic on July 18, 2008 6:16 AM



It's controversy time at the Blowhards! Unfortunately, everybody wants to argue in the evening. My time for arguing is very early in the morning In the evening I'm out playing music with somebody or other.

Please, somebody, get up at 6 a.m. and fight with me!

This is a great quote from one of the Devlin articles, because it confronts a Woodstock dilemma: "...if a husband trusts his wife, he can skip rushing home from the office unannounced to make sure she is not in bed with the gardener. That leaves him free to devote his full attention to his own role as breadwinner for children he is sure are his own."

The issue of the local girls dumping the husband for the gardener has long puzzled and troubled Woodstock. Here's what happens: Husband moves family to the country for the great schools and beautiful scenery. He continues to commute to NYC. He spends so much time commuting and working that before long the wife is glancing sideways out the window at the muscular, tanned good old boy who mows the lawn.

The story from here on out is inevitable. Divorce... custody battle... separate living quarters... and often bankrupcy. The gardener isn't really a very good provider. He's often the guitar player in a local band. Playing in local dives doesn't pay much, but the groupy girls will lure you into the back alley for a blow job. So, the affair with the wife is short lived. The gardener is soon supplanted by another good old boy who is slightly higher in the food chain.

Professional husband becomes enraged that wife is dragging one man after another into the life of the children and warfare ensures. Wife becomes belligerent and strident feminist, elevating her cheating ways into a leftist cause. To make matters worse, not all the boyfriends are peace and love types. The children are forced to suffer through pitched battles in the home. Physical fights and sexual sadism often become the daily fare.

Soon, wife is a member of The Women in Black or Code Pink and she's fighting to change the world.

This is feminism to me. Isn't it great! The other part of feminism is godawful women in the office who spend their formative years as fag hags, taunting the straight men for being unable to match their shirts to their pants. Then they want some poor bastard to marry them when they turn 35.

I don't have a policy on women. Well, my only real policy is that feminist women can go fuck themselves. I don't seek their company, and over the years they've faded away from my life, thank God. My new status as a self-employed contractor means that I don't see them very much. And, I make more money than I made when I was employed. What in the hell was I doing going to the office and kissing their asses? It seemed like something I had to do at the time.

And I've dumped the white women in favor of Filipinas. What a relief! Women who actually know how to be a woman and want to be one. The incredible truth that I learned from my Filipina wife is that feminism isn't a positive assertion of identity. It's an attempt to fill the void of white culture, which simply does not know how to rear girls to be women. In the absence of a religious and cultural tradition, white culture has inserted ideology... a hopelessly inadequate substitute. Filipino culture is just incredibly smarter. Filipino culture also has a well defined, long standing traditional role for gays. You don't have to be a defiant asshole in Filipino culture to assert your right to be gay. Once again, this is an incredible relief.

So, somebody out there. Fight with me!

Posted by: Shouting Thomas on July 18, 2008 7:55 AM



It certainly doesn't surprise me that these sorts of essays are supressed, just like Vdare.com is smeared as "white supremacist hate speech" in relation to immigration (it's indescribably evil, don't you dare read it...and we aren't going to answer any of the questions raised by these misogynist racists).

And the revelations! I had already read some Warren Farrell and internet sites such as backlash.com, but these Roger Devlin essays
http://public.box.net/mensarefugee26388
are earthshaking. First, as always (and this is a feeling I've often gotten from so many of the fascinating links on 2blowhards), I'm awestruck by how the internet has changed the world. A free library of knowledge from one's easy chair. All is revealed. And the insights Devlin presented blew me away (not to mention being very funny in parts).

Most of all, as a man who chose--without even being much aware of the carnage going on once I left the scene--to renounce girl chasing in my mid-thirties to become financially independent (which is rapidly putting me into the position of being able to leave and marry a virgin outside of the West), I feel the relief of those people who are interviewed after a fatal airline crash...you know, "I was so ticked about being bumped from the flight, and then...!" I feel immensely lucky to have avoided marrying a girl raised in the toxic environment of the West (no Roissy, I don't want to marry one of your three hundred and forty-two pump-and-dumps, which feminism has so nicely provided you with), and (quite possibly) being sucked into the maw of the divorce industry.

Devlin is certainly correct in saying that these sorts of reports are not going to help reverse the male marriage strike.

Posted by: Yakking Guy on July 18, 2008 8:12 AM



This might be an even more cartoonish take on the battle of the sexes than Roissy's blog. (At least, Roissy has a sense of humor.)

This essay struck me as absolutely bizarre. Does Devlin live on Mars? College-educated women (the targets of this essay) are having no trouble getting married, and they are less likely to get divorced. So clearly all high-achieving women are not destined to become "resentful, Cosmo-addled, STD-infected harridans" no man wants. (See Kay Hymowitz and Stephanie Coontz on this:

Link.

Link.

(This is also all true for college-educated men so there is no "male marriage strike.") Despite all the airtime they get, Maureen Dowd and Lori "Settle" Gottlieb are the exceptions, not the rule.

Certainly, Devlin's view of the sexes is crude and reductionist. Sex differences do exist, and I've read more than my share of evolutionary psychology. But Devlin is going too far. I agree women want men with "status" (which is not necessarily narcissistic--if you're a college grad with a decent career, why would you want to marry, as Devlin quotes approvingly, a guy "living off unemployment checks?"), but that does not mean they don't also want someone with "intelligence, kindness, personality [and] a certain sense of humor." (Devlin's implication is that all women are secretly "shallow and materialistic" gold-diggers, who are just dressing up their base motives with this kind of talk.) But to Devlin, this is an example of women's too high standards: women are fools to think they can marry a man who is both employed and nice. Women have to choose: You can either date a handsome, rich, but emotionally unavailable "alpha" or get commitment from a nice, but milquetoast "beta."

This is ridiculous, and it's far less flattering to men than almost anything the feminists think about them. I know plenty of men who have impressive careers, and are also kind and committed to their wives. (And they're not married to hyper-fertile teenagers who spend their time making pie crusts from scratch--Devlin's ideal woman.)

Does anyone who is married actually buy Devlin's analysis? Don't men appreciate their wives' intelligence, kindness, and sense of humor much more than their ability to bake a pie or have children? Do they really think their wives only married them a) for their "status" or b) because he was the best she, an aging harridan, could do?

Posted by: Cheryl on July 18, 2008 12:32 PM



I find Devlin's point that women have lost status in recent decades both gobsmacking and somehow convincing. It is not a sign of an increase in status if instead of not having to work, you now have to work. It is not a sign of status if instead of not having to fight, you now have to fight.

Which brings me to a not entirely related point: what is the lowest status age/sex group in our society (and most others, I guess)? It is young males. They are expendable in wars, considered the fodder--pardon me, I mean "human resource"!-- for any dangerous task. They die in huge numbers compared to other groups. Even children are more respected, protected and admired than young men.

And now young women are being pushed into doing the same kinds of things as young men. So gullible are we, that we think this is an increase in status for young women. Having to do the same kind of scut work as society's butt-monkeys is not an increase in status. Not if I understand the word's meaning at all.

When women's life expectancy drops back to men's levels, we'll understand: the high status don't die young, they don't have to join the levee and fight in wars, and they don't have to get up every day and do often dangerous usually boring work just in order to survive.

Welcome to the bottom of the pole girls! And you slid right on down only because you were told to. You are now "empowered" enough to freely choose to do what your elders are directing you to do. Funny how this world of female empowerment has coincided with the pornification of society. Oops. Porn is "empowering" too, isn't it? Being a sexual "resource" is as liberating as being fodder--again, my apologies, I meant "human resource"! At least that's what Vivid Video keeps telling its "girls".

Oh my, I'm cynical today.

Posted by: PatrickH on July 18, 2008 1:34 PM



I like Devlin's work, but have some reservations. For example, Devlin underplays male perfidy. After all, as Darwinian theory predicts, if men can get away with fathering children without having to invest resources in them, many will eagerly do so.

I agree with agnostic. Women tend to have trouble dealing with harsh, ugly truths, especially about themselves. Devlin's work needs a kinder, gentler presentation, if it is going to do anything.

Posted by: Thursday on July 18, 2008 2:31 PM



Cheryl's opening statements and citations are flawed.

"College-educated women ... are having no trouble getting married, and they are less likely to get divorced. So clearly all high-achieving women are not destined to become "resentful, Cosmo-addled, STD-infected harridans" no man wants."

For this she cites two articles. One is a Boston Globe article I can't get. The other is article on the marriage-gap, the thesis of which is, married people are better off in several ways. Important quote: "There is something fundamentally different about low-income single mothers and their educated married sisters. But a key part of that difference is that educated women still believe in marriage as an institution for raising children." The point of the article was not to compare upper and lower income and uneducated versus educated women in terms of degree of difficulty in GETTING married or achieving marriage [or attracting men], but to compare the well-off versus the not so well off, the rich versus poor, in terms of marriage rates, and argues that the traditional set-up for having kids --marriage, works best in terms of avoiding poverty and other social problems. The article concludes: "Marriage may not be a panacea. But it is a sine qua non."

As such, the marriage gap article may or may not support Cheryl's "no trouble" position. I can't tell. One might infer there's no trouble from the author's statements to the effect that better educated and better off women have better in marriage reproduction rates than their poorer, less-educated sisters. However, there's nothing directly on point in that article either, and one might just as easily infer that, well, the poorer less educated sisters are just too dumb and present oriented to secure a traditional marriage arrangement before reproducing.

As for the brainiac article, I suspect it says something like: lotsa guys actually like smart women; they're witty, funny, pleasant, non-problematic and generally well-pursued. No news there, and again, just guessing, but I imagine it might not have much in direct evidence on the degree of difficulty such women have in getting married.

Finally, Cheryl's statement that "clearly all... are not destined to become..." is an easily refutable absolute statement. My two sisters are high-achieving, happily married with children, and not resentful, Cosmo-addled, STD-infected harridans no man wants. QED. Bet Cheryl could personally refute the straw man too. But so what? Devlin's talking trends; does he have a point? Are there more resentful, Cosmo-addled, STD-infected harridans now than 50 years ago? 25? 150? Yes or no?

Posted by: CZ on July 18, 2008 3:33 PM



CZ, I don't understand your distinction here: "The point of the article was not to compare upper and lower income and uneducated versus educated women in terms of degree of difficulty in GETTING married or achieving marriage [or attracting men], but to compare the well-off versus the not so well off, the rich versus poor, in terms of marriage rates."

The point is to compare more affluent, educated women versus less affluent, educated women in terms of getting married. That's the Marriage Gap. We have this idea that the single mom is a feminist Murphy Brown, and that college-educated women are pursuing careers rather than family. (This is what Devlin's article assumes.) But it's actually not the case. Educated women want family, and the majority of them are marrying. Right now, they are more likely to marry than women with only a high school degree. Hymowitz's essay is an attempt to find out why.

The Coontz article, "The Romantic Lives of Braniacs," is available here:

Link.

She is making a similar point to Hymowitz, i.e., that there's this impression that educated women are feminist career girls who aren't marrying, but again, if you look at the stats, it's not true. To quote: "College graduates and high-earning women are now more likely to marry than women with less education and lower earnings, although they are older when they do so. Even women with PhDs no longer face a 'success penalty' in their nuptial prospects. It might feel that way in their 20s, when women with advanced degrees marry at a lower rate than other women the same age. But by their 30s, women with advanced degrees catch up, marrying at a higher rate than their same-aged counterparts with less education."

If you can't access that article, Coontz makes the same point here:

Link.

"Today, men rank intelligence and education way above cooking and housekeeping as a desirable trait in a partner. A recent study by Paul Amato et al. found that the chance of divorce recedes with each year that a woman postpones marriage, with the least divorce-prone marriages being those where the couples got married at age 35 or higher...Many studies show that men now want a wife who is at a similar educational or occupational level. The 2001 Journal of Marriage and Family paper found that in mate-preference surveys taken in 1985 and 1996, intelligence and education had moved up to number 5 on men's list of desirable qualities in a mate in both surveys, ahead of good looks. Meanwhile, the desire for a good cook and housekeeper had dropped to 14th place in both surveys, near the bottom of the 18-point scale."

So Devlin is talking about a trend that largely does not exist. Educated women who are pursuing careers are not having any difficulty getting married. In fact, they are more likely to get married and stay that way. They are even in demand since most men now want to marry a woman who is accomplished.

My question is whether this is a difference of age. I'm in my late 20s, so my guess is I'm younger than most people on this thread. Perhaps the men posting were on the cusp of this social change--the "divorce binge" of the 70s and 80s (as Hymowitz calls it)--and so they have the feeling that things are much worse off for men and women.

So maybe Michael is wrong that things have gotten more "abrasive" for the younger set. I don't hang out with the Roissy crowd, but most of my friends are now getting married. These couples tend to have gone to the same colleges and are pursuing similar professions. They definitely fit in with Coontz's and Hymowitz's data on assortative mating.

Posted by: Cheryl on July 18, 2008 6:14 PM



There's a fascinating article by Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers, which might relate to my last question.

Link.

They think people are now looking to marriage for different things, and that the high divorce rate of the 1970s was a sign of adjustment, as people found the person they chose for the old form of marriage was no longer right for the new form. From the article:

We believe that the answer lies in a shift from the family as a forum for shared production, to shared consumption. In case the language of economic lacks romance, let’s be clearer: modern marriage is about love and companionship. Most things in life are simply better shared with another person: this ranges from the simple pleasures such as enjoying a movie or a hobby together, to shared social ties such as attending the same church, and finally, to the joint project of bringing up children. Returning to the language of economics, the key today is consumption complementarities — activities that are not only enjoyable, but are more enjoyable when shared with a spouse. We call this new model of sharing our lives “hedonic marriage”.

Posted by: Cheryl on July 18, 2008 6:30 PM



Well, I would love to weigh in on this, but interestingly enough, my workplace has blocked both of the sites that host the Devlin pieces as "Sites dedicated to hatred and race matters" .

Posted by: Brandon M on July 18, 2008 6:45 PM



I have just printed out the Devlin article to take back to my death-bed. Meanwhile, these comments are very exciting! Wait until ST gets to the term 'hedonic marriage.' That's not how they do it in the Philipines, dagnamit!

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 18, 2008 7:46 PM



I agree with Cheryl ( and I'm also in my twenties). I work in software, and most of the geeks I know are either happily married or in a serious relationship.

Woman I know who are very ambitious or career oriented, tend to be a lot less stable with their relationships. We'll see how that plays out as they get older. However, most woman my age do not want male-style super competitive, money-making jobs ( and most of my friends are ivy league grads, so this is a sample of the most ambitious). Rather, I've found that a lot of them want to go into the "soft" jobs - non-profits, government, design, arts, teaching, government, marketing, graphics, administration. They'll become doctors, but not surgeons. Biologists, but not gene sequencers. Men definitely have more pressure to earn money. In many ways, I still feel like Devlin's pattern of the woman having higher status still exists. Woman's special status is now that they can afford to take the lower paying, more enjoyable soft job, while men climb the corporate ladder and bring home the bacon.

Things are toughest for the working class man. Offshoring and immigration have driven down wages. Meanwhile the growth of the managerial/administrative/civil service state has provided more higher paying jobs for lower class woman who managed to sit quietly at their desks, color between the lines, and graduate with a degree.


Posted by: Libra on July 18, 2008 8:11 PM



I think that Devlin's article is the masculine version of some of the early feminist writings, back in the early 60's - he certainly overstates things, sometimes laughably, but he has some real points that shouldn't be ignored. It is certainly my impression that there is a hostile undercurrent to male-female relations that simply didn't exist back when I was in college (late 1970's), and I have to wonder what's causing it. Cheryl, I realize that you are much more in touch with the modern sex scene than us old fogies are, but then again, you don't have as good a basis for comparison as us oldsters do - after all, we actually can remember when things were different, at least when we take our ginkgo. And Devlin would probably say "of course she doesn't see a problem - she's a woman, a member of the privileged class!". I'd be interested to hear from a twenty-something guy on this topic.

Posted by: Tschafer on July 18, 2008 8:36 PM



By the way, here's a link to a paper done by a couple of sociologists in 2004, replete with statistical analysis;

Link.

Their conclusion:"As females experience greater levels of success in the labor market, they also tend to experience higher levels of divorce."

This would seem to bear out Devlin's point, at least to some degree, with female income, not education, being the decisive factor.

By the way, I'm a big boy, and don't mind hitting sites like "Occidental Quarterly" to find interesting offbeat stuff, but GOOD LORD some of the stuff over there is creepy. I'm pretty conservative, and by the time I had finished reading some of it, I was about ready to send a contribution to the SPLC and sign up as an Obama volunteer..

Posted by: Tschafer on July 18, 2008 8:54 PM



Re the Marriage Gap article, I'll try again.

I admit smart women have more suitors. And they're more beautiful. Your desirability has distracted me, and I'll address it below.

The trend Devlin is talking about is marriage. The trend Hymowitz is talking about is a subset: marriage amongst poor women (dim, uneducated, whatever) versus marriage amongst gifted women (bright, educated, etc.). That one subset versus another indicates a great and increasing difference in marriage rates doesn't provide definitive or dispositive information about the overall situation. (Unless, of course, you don't give a shit about the poor.) If anything, that one subset is still down in generational terms --as Hymowitz states, suggests that overall the institution is still down. (Sports fans, If A-Rod and Jeter go into a hitless slump and two weeks later A-Rod is hitting again but Jeter is still down, would the overall Yankee batting average be back up or still down? Answer: it depends.)

To usefully discuss the overall situation, one would have to compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges as it were. Are the alpha women getting married at the same rate as their moms? Grandmoms? Same age? Comparable numbers of children? Divorces? Etc. Etc.

Second, and to get to your desirability, when I say "get married", I mean get in the following sense: to succeed in attaining, achieving or experiencing: obtain, e.g. "I need all the sleep I can get." (I want to get married.); or, to move or come into a specified position, situation, or state, e.g. "She got into the car." (She got married.).

Cheryl, you state an absolute, high standard for educated women (a universal negation): educated women are having "no trouble" in succeeding in attaining, achieving, or experiencing, i.e obtaining, marriage; or moving, coming into the specific position, situation, or state of, marriage.

One possible response: Really? None at all? Zero?

Could be true. But I still don't see any proof cited either way, apples to apples wise. I see a lot, apples to oranges wise, but, apples to apples, I'm not convinced. Evidence that would convince me would be cross-generational.

"In fact, they are more likely to get married and stay that way."

More likely than whom? 200 lb Jerry Springer contestants? Their mom? ST's Fillipina's? So what? Again, apples.

"They are even in demand since most men now want to marry a woman who is accomplished."

So what? Are they getting married more than their moms? Earlier? More kids?

And, finally, to return again to Devlin's main point re the institution of marriage: is their increased rate of marriage/lack of divorce as against the 60's-70's exceeding their moms'/grandmoms such as to balance out the overall down rate of the poor ladies?

Posted by: CZ on July 18, 2008 9:05 PM



One thing he overstates, or at least doesn't have enough data for, is the argument that if lower-class men aren't being fathers, they'll do bad things to occupy their time. Logically that's true, but we want to know quantitatively how much crime has increased due to lower-class guys not being fathers.

Plus, violent crime has been falling steadily since 1992 across all racial groups, and it's not because we're giving losers the chance to be dads. Just beef up the police if need be, and give the duds a bunch of porn to bide their time.

In those writings, he comes awfully close to suggesting that reproduction or fatherhood is a right that loser men are being deprived of.

I'd rather live in a society where smart, ambitious, good-looking guys reproduce and the dumb, lazy, and ugly don't. And so would everyone else. The lower orders can be pacified with porn, TV, video games, religion, and whatever else.

Posted by: agnostic on July 18, 2008 9:51 PM



On the general subject of inflammatory cogitation, I recall years ago reading Bradley Smith's disarmingly captivating intellectual memoir, "Confessions of a Holocaust Revisionist." There's a scene in that one where Bradley is confiding to a friend about the profound inner conflict he experienced upon reading Arthur Butz's beyond-the-pale treatise, "The Hoax of the Twentieth Century." After some back and forth table talk, Bradley cuts to the grist:

"...But what's really nailed me to this thing is how it's being suppressed and that those who are suppressing it are absolutely obsessive and fanatical about it. And it's not fair about guys like Butz. It's not fair that he's dismissed out of hand. It offends me. You should see the book. It's a real book. He isn't wrong about everything. No man is. The intellectuals owe it to me to tell me where he's wrong and where he's right too. What the hell's going on here?"

Now I am well aware of the fact that most readers of this forum will consider Bradley Smith -- and certainly Butz -- to be so far off the deep end as to sully the spirit of Michael's politely provocative gesture in linking to Mr. Devlin's reactionary musings. But there is simply no litmus test quite like that provided by the Holocaust dissidents, and this is true regardless of where one stands with reference to the merits and deficiencies of the specific arguments they advance. These are the guys, after all, who do prison time for what they write, and for what they think (and it ain't just David Irving). The Occidental Quarterly may be edging at some guarded sensibilities, but the persecution visited upon those who persist in certain areas of inquiry (or skepticism or denial or negation or whatever) is real and important. I think it should be far more troubling to those of use who enjoy this kind of safely heterodox online parlor chat.

Anyway, Bradley's simple point stuck with me. No man -- and, pace Devlin, no woman -- is wrong about everything. That one forever changed the way I would regard the ostensible kooks and easily defined hate-mongers. Having long since waded beyond the bounds of acceptable discourse, I submit that once you steer past the intellectual stop signs, the personae non grata are invariably revealed as blokes with another point of view. Creationists and misogynists and unrepentant pedophiles, oh my. You can bristle. Or you can buy the next round and talk up the taboo. I opt for the latter option, every time. For me, it's a no-brainer. And liberating, even.

Having thus polluted the conversation, I may as well share my sense that Devlin is -- no surprise -- right about some things, and wrong about others. As much as I take to his bluster and hyperbole (a matter of taste, I'm sure), I would certainly agree with Cheryl that he is dead wrong about the vertiginous state of modern womanhood. From what I recall, spinsters tend to be happier than most of us, as are the childless. And for all of Shallit's lurid anecdotes (which I believe Devlin is a mite to credulous in reciting), experience teaches me that for every woman who feels constrained by sexual liberation, there are plenty for whom the bounty of choice remains vital and cherished. So some will get married and find perfect misery, or storybook bliss, or that rarefied and calmly cultivated love of which Devlin speaks so fondly. And some will wallow in Cosmo-bred fantasies and nurse every disappointment. But so what. Freedom is risk, is uncertainty, is dangerous, is good. Safety, whether rooted in tradition or legal stricture, always sucks ass. You live and you die. Might as well breathe free. Might as well choose your regrets. Might as well go wild, ladies, at least from time to time.

Furthermore, as a convinced antinatalist, I find negative value in procreation, however it may be sanctioned or sanctified (and yes, civilization be damned), So Devlin's point about the quasi-redemptive power of paternity is to me worse than a non-starter.

However, I suspect Devlin has a better point regarding the sadly confused state of us beta males, who I know from bitter first-hand experience really do flail in uncertain agitated desperation (until and unless we get lucky, as I did). We're castigated as creeps, or patronized as sensitive confidantes. But, to borrow a phrase from Sister Y of "The View from Hell," this common agitation ultimately distills to yet another sad example of "mismatch and meaning." Life is disappointing. Always was, always will be. The brute Darwinian undertones merely embitter the existential poison which we are force-fed the moment we vacate the womb. And tough shit, of course. To me, it's just another reason not to have kids.

Still, to paraphrase a bad man, "It's not fair about guys like Devlin." So Kudos to Michael, for having the balls.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 18, 2008 11:23 PM



Shouting Thomas? Where's Shouting Thomas?

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on July 18, 2008 11:25 PM



Everyone go check out Chip's website --

Link.

Although I'm a big reader of forbidden lit (and explorer of forbidden websites), I'm much less forthright and courageous about it than Chip is.

I agree with Chip completely, btw: it's very liberating to say "the hell with polite discourse," wade in, and see what's there. Besides, I don't read in order to figure out the Last Word on anything, let alone to search out people I might agree with. I read mainly out of curiosity. Tell me there's a book (or movie, or whatever) out there that polite people know shouldn't be handled, and I'll make a beeline straight for it.

But I'm not the hero-kamikaze about this that Chip is.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on July 18, 2008 11:42 PM



Cheryl -- I'm not sure your links (thanks for them, btw) provide the knockout punch you seem to think they do.

1) Saying that college educated gals marry more than poorer/less-educated gals do -- which is the only real claim made by these articles -- doesn't prove much, given how much marriage has collapsed as an institution among the lower classes.

2) The articles don't break out much beyond "college educated." College-educated includes gals from Arizona State, Ol' Miss, and Ohio Wesleyan, who I suspect are about as traditional as can be, and who greatly outnumber the gals who come out of Stanford and Skidmore and head for the coastal bright lights.

3) The articles, interesting as they are, ask us to ignore common experience. "Game" has emerged as a big thing. "Sex and the City" was a huge hit. Relationship patterns have emerged that weren't much visible before. One example is the hard-driving gal who wants a supportive hubby and who winds up with a househubby, while she winds up rather resentfully carrying on as the breadwinner. And plenty of older folks have looked at kids in their mid-20s and seen tons of alpha girls surrounded by flocks of sheepish, apologetic guys who seem to have lost touch with what it is to be a man. In my own life it's hyper-common to run into gals in Manhattan book publishing -- smart, attractive, from fancy colleges -- who are single, aging, miserable about it, and desperate to find a guy.

Life will continue, pairing-up will occur, children will be had, etc. But it's all interesting. And how can it be argued that all this isn't indicative of something?

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on July 19, 2008 12:26 AM



I'm a 30-something married guy, and my take on this whole thing is that the article in question, much like the vast majority of trend journalism, is a solution looking for a problem.

Posted by: JV on July 19, 2008 2:16 AM



Oh my, I do love the internet in general and this website in particular.

What a well-put, well-reasoned post by Chip Smith. And cogent, even-tempered comments by MB as always.

Chip, as a man who is quite sympathetic to your lack of enthusiasm about watching the rapid expansion of the roiling mass of mostly-miserable humanity, I grok you. And I agree 100% about the importance of legally protected free speech, which can only be authentically protective of political freedom if there are no exceptions whatsoever. (Gads! It is now explicitly illegal--not just workplace-blocked--to publish "inflammatory" race comments in England).

I also sympathize with Devlin's (and contributors to sites like Occidental Quarterly) concern about possibly dire consequences of declining birthrates among white non-cretins. If the US turns into a two-class, third-world country, that will be a bona fide tragedy for the millions of unsophisticated Invisible Being-fearing folk who are naive and trusting and just trying to play by the rules. Chip, you (and nieces and nephews) may need that buffer of breeders more than you know.

Posted by: Yakking Guy on July 19, 2008 8:16 AM



Just checked out Chip Smith's site. Yikes! I suspect many of the proprietors of sites he has links to (e.g., Occidental Quarterly) would rather he didn't.

I guess that's one problem with taking any unpopular position...there will always be fellow-travelers who not only agree with what you're saying but also use your site as a way of flipping off the world. Or to put it another way, being on the edge of respectability by cause of saying things that are taboo-but-true tends to attract people who revel in being fringe for fringe's sake.

Posted by: Yakking Guy on July 19, 2008 8:33 AM



BTW, can there be any ism more Darwinistically self-limiting than antinatalism? Rather opposite the religious groups that encourage members to be fruitful.

Posted by: Yakking Guy on July 19, 2008 8:39 AM



Michael, once again this is quality stuff. Kudos for putting it up on the blog.

As for Devlin, the man writes extraordinarily well, and his arguments are quite nuanced. I personally think that he is a bit misogynistic, almost a bit paranoid about women and a bit too blind to the behaviour of poorly behaved men. I think he lacks charity with regard to the female nature, attributing to it characteristics which frankly I don't see. But gee, the guy reasons well.

From my experience, I would have to disagree with Cheryl and Chip. Educated and good looking women have a bloody hard time finding a partner--(God knows how many of them I've had crying in my office)-- and spinsters are the most miserable women on the face of the earth. Oh yeah, they may appear to be happy but scratch underneath the surface and there is nothing but bitterness. As we say in my profession, beware the smiling depressive.

I'm hesitant to link this, since my writing is so poor, but a while ago I wrote this on the same subject: some readers might find it of interest.

I thought his comments on romantic novels being the equivalent of male porn quite illuminative. I must admit that I had never thought of the novels in that light before.

His definition of a feminist as someone who is envious of the male role is priceless. I think its one of those pithy lines that sums up a lot.

As a right wing bastard, I actually find some of the well reasoned positions from the Left informative and am sympathetic to some of them if for no other reason than to expose the errors of my thinking. What I really like about Devlin's pieces was his opinions on how conservatives go wrong in dealing with feminism and women. I would have to agree that most conservatives misunderstand women. Very good stuff.

Posted by: Slumlord on July 19, 2008 9:04 AM



It is now explicitly illegal--not just workplace-blocked--to publish "inflammatory" race comments in England

Is it literally true that there are people in England who are imprisoned solely for expressing un-PC opinions on race or immigration?

If yes, can it be said that England now has political prisoners?

Posted by: PA on July 19, 2008 10:30 AM



Michael: Thanks so much for the kind words.

Yakking Guy: Ditto.

You write:

"I also sympathize with Devlin's (and contributors to sites like Occidental Quarterly) concern about possibly dire consequences of declining birthrates among white non-cretins. If the US turns into a two-class, third-world country, that will be a bona fide tragedy for the millions of unsophisticated Invisible Being-fearing folk who are naive and trusting and just trying to play by the rules. Chip, you (and nieces and nephews) may need that buffer of breeders more than you know."

And:

"...can there be any ism more Darwinistically self-limiting than antinatalism? Rather opposite the religious groups that encourage members to be fruitful."

It's funny. A while back, when Kerry Howley was snarking it up with the birth dearth doomsayers, I found myself resisting the temptation to step in. While I thought Howley may have scored some decent anti-Malthusian points here and there, my removed understanding of genetic math tells me the "demography as destiny" crowd isn't so easily dismissed -- at least not on the premises the debate tacitly presumes. But philanthropic antinatalism trumps those terms at the quick. It's the third rail. No one touches it. And if someone does, the dismissive reactions are fast and predictable, as I well know. People become annoyed.

I readily admit that the moral aims of antinatalism are at odds with Darwinian logic, but while natural selection provides a convincing mechanistic account of the process by which life adapts and evolves, it is inherently silent as to the value of any moral idea. Despite the conciliatory efforts of some evolutionary ethicists, the is-ought gap remains unbridgeable. Darwinism is descriptive. Ethics is prescriptive. Which is not to say the the former shouldn't inform the latter; indeed, the Schopenhauerian indifference of natural selection virtually guarantees that suffering will persist, and this base reality merely strengthens my view that procreation is at least potentially -- and I would argue intrinsically -- harmful.

What's more, it is often said that antinatalism is "counterintuitive," but once you reflect on the Darwinian origins of the mental wiring that fuels our desire to reproduce, this counterintuitive default can be understood as a kind of cognitive bias, much like the Pollyanna Principle that glosses our perspective in so many ways.

Demographic trends may ensure that life standards will decline over time, but I've said before that the end of civilization is a tangible reality for every being who lives yet to die. This simple insight is often dismissed as an immature (or arrogant) flight response, but as a simple statement of our fate I submit it is obdurate and true. I rest better knowing that my kids -- the ones I won't have -- will not have to worry about the instauration. Sure, they won't get to enjoy baba ghanouj either, but nor will they miss it. Those who are never brought into existence are spared every deprivation, and every slight, up to and including the end of civilization, i.e., death.

As a cosmic philosophy, antinatalism is surely doomed by Darwin's implacable lockwork. I have no illusions here. But the microcosmic choice to refrain from playing this dismal game remains available for each of us. And I would argue that the option not to have children is rationally defensible in moral terms that make intuitive sense in virtually every other context, whether one's ethical grounding is buttressed by some utilitarian calculus, by positivist contract theory, or by cathexis to some version of a harm principle. Just follow the logic a bit deeper than habit allows and you may see what I'm getting at.

And for what it's worth, my nieces and nephews are mostly cretinous hooligans. They'll be fine.

I hope I haven't derailed things. T'wasn't my intention. I've reserved a spot on the Hogroll for Herr Devlin's erudite heresies. My thanks to Michael for introducing me to yet another thought criminal. The spice of life, I suppose.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 19, 2008 2:45 PM



"As for Devlin, the man writes extraordinarily well, and his arguments are quite nuanced."

What?!? That was the most boring and inept essay I've read in ages. Devlin's writing is workmanlike at best, and he doesn't have an original thought in his head. Romance novels are porn for women?? Duh! Hasn't this news been out for 30 years, at least?

Give me good writing and I'll read anything. This was just a bunch of testy complaints connected by acres of padding.

Men want sex, women want security. Big deal. In the end, most of us also want companionship and a hand to hold when we're in our wheelchairs.

As for Chip's website, I see he aims to shock, and I guess that is a worthy endeavor. He may want to add those old sepia photos of black men hanging from trees that you find on some civil rights history sites.

As for the overlooked wisdom of paedophiles and Holocause deniers, well, has everyone read all their Orwell, Goethe, Bill Moyers and Gore Vidal yet before descending to crackpots?

Life is short, I'm beginning to see.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 19, 2008 2:49 PM



Sister Wolf:

I think you've got me all wrong, but I absolutely love your site. Here's to a full recovery.

Chip

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 19, 2008 4:52 PM



Devlin's piece isn't really badly written, but it is ill-informed (or deliberately deceptive), tendentious, and manipulative horseshit all the same. And I'm an orthodox Catholic "paleo-conservative" who doesn't even disagree with the notion that there is something fundamentally wrong with the ideal of marriage that feminism, among other social forces, has put about. Odd. If you give me too much more of this stuff to read, Michael, I may become a Relapsed Feminist, a thing I scarecely believed possible.

I don't have time just now to go through Devlin's series thoroughly and explain what I think is wrong with it, but those who are curious about my reasoning can start with two related points. First, the idea that men derived no economic benefit from traditional marriage - that it was a financially burdensome system that they tolerated for the sake of children - is nonsense. Dowries, new family connections, business influence, landholdings - all these were traditionally among the perks of marriage for men in the Western world, even for those who did not belong to the elite classes. Even leaving the immediate appeal of these benefits aside, strategic marriage of this kind was how families raised themselves in the world, through time, in the days before the rise of industrial capitalism made it (slightly) easier to accomplish this in one's own lifetime. Then, of course, there was the contribution that women made to the family economy, at least in the Western world (and perhaps in the Eastern one as well) through the labour they put into the household and, quite often, into the family's business as well. Does he think that women, historically, did nothing but lie around the boudoir when they weren't delivering babies?

The second idiocy of Devlin's piece is that he seems quite unwilling to acknowledge that men today benefit by women's work outside the household in any way. Most men I know appear to welcome the fact that their wives work. It has taken the burden of being the sole provider off their shoulders, and in some ways (not all) it has raised the standard of living for many millions of couples. Of course, that rise has come at a price: less time for family life, a loss of leisure, neglected children - but it isn't really men but children who are the great losers there.

I know there's a school of thought that says living standards have fallen since the mass entry of married women into the labour force. I don't know. It's true that it is now nearly impossible for one person to earn enough money to buy a house and raise a family; two incomes have become essential, and I can see that this brings many problems in its wake, as well as a certain loss of prestige for men. But surely it has not been men alone, even working-class men, who have suffered by this change.

Clio

Posted by: alias clio on July 19, 2008 7:37 PM



"Is it literally true that there are people in England who are imprisoned solely for expressing un-PC opinions on race or immigration?"

I believe so.

"If yes, can it be said that England now has political prisoners?"

If not, the government is trying. Two refugees, Simon Sheppard and Stephen Whittle, convicted of thought crimes have within the past week sought political asylum in Los Angeles.

Posted by: ben tillman on July 19, 2008 8:04 PM



Why thank you, Chip. In that case, we're on!

I agree that procreation is selfish, and I sometimes feel guilty for bringing my sons into existence only to suffer and die. But I wouldn't undo them. Their faces hold more beauty for me than the rest of the universe.

I still say that Devlin is a sloppy writer and pedestrian thinker. He only seems fully engaged when whining about women who want 99% of men to 'drop dead.' He has been rejected too many times, and that doesn't make for clear thinking.

How about the essays of Martin Amis, if you're looking for thought-criminals. He's been making everyone furious with his views on terrorism.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 19, 2008 10:58 PM



Sister Wolf:

I like you. And I'm considering renaming my site "The Overlooked Wisdom of Paedophiles and Holocaust Deniers." A catchy hook.

Amis's position interests me, but I can never shake the sense that his stance amounts to a kind of writerly celebrity posturing. It seems overly calculated, somehow -- like he's vying for historical vindication, and little more. I wanted so much to like "Koba the Dread," but ended up finding it ponderous and pretentious. I guess I'm more of a Houellebecq kind of guy, perhaps because his take on European declension edges nearer to my cupcake, which is full-on, bottoms-up nihilism.

It may be a gender thing, but as I mentioned before, I think Devlin's most salient points hover around feminist -- and post-feminist -- myopia concerning the experience of beta males, which I suspect is a real and systemically overlooked phenomenon (after all, few men prefer to think of themselves as second rate). His recurring reference to average men living amid polygamous harems may seem esoteric to Western sensibilities, but from an historic or global perspective, it's real enough, as are the warfaring consequences. (There's a post-femmie commentator at NRO -- KaLo? -- who's pushed a similar line, but I'm not sure that's worth pursuing.)

And while I have no idea how many times Devlin has been rejected, I'm not inclined to discount his views on any such account. Hostility can be a surprising muse. Personally, I think he's a solid enough essayist, though I do believe he's profoundly mistaken about women, and it is telling that his reactionary prescriptions are advanced without much in the way of statistical evidence. That's the problem with many conservatives: passion and traditionalist rhetoric, passed off as subtle argument. I blame Russ Kirk, and that whipsmart boob, Chesterton.

Your sentiments about your children are natural, as I'm sure you realize. After all, to "undo" them now would be to kill them. Because they exist. The more interesting question, to me, concerns your presumable lack of sentiment toward the children you never took part in bringing into existence, the ones who literally do not exist. The empty playgrounds, and deathbeds. Yet those floating gametes contain the potential for specific and beloved life. Surely you would have cared for them, as much or possibly more. Yet they are spared. I think this matters.

You are more reflective, obviously. But your point is deeply relevant. It goes to the problem of inculcated hostility. Antinatalism tells people, perforce, that they were wrong to have the children they love. This worse than impolitic. It is is rude. It is dangerous. It isn't wrong.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 20, 2008 2:44 AM



Sister Wolf, at your recommendation I had a read of some of Amis's essays available on the net. My conclusion; they're crap. The man's a windbag. Devlin may be a bit mechanical, but he's clear, logical and succinct, sort of like a written version of a math paper:very much unlike Amis. Arty farty types may think his work lacks "colour", but that's why simple folk like me think his essays mighty fine.
I suggest that your judgment has been clouded by all that morphine. After reading your blog, I respectfully suggest prunes.

Posted by: Slumlord on July 20, 2008 10:13 AM



For anyone who's interested in more Devlin, he has a new piece posted today at The Last Ditch:

http://www.thornwalker.com/ditch/devlin_home_ec_03.htm

Posted by: ben tillman on July 20, 2008 3:04 PM



Slumlord, I am so beyond prunes. Thanks, though. Sorry you don't like Martin Amis. I've been a fan since his first novel, which was immature crap but still refreshingly un-PC. I loved his dad Kingsley as well. But Slumlord, wouldn't you rather write like Martin Amis than your own good self? Perhaps you prefer math to literature and I'm the opposite?

Chip, hostility can be a distorting muse, don't you think? A pair of seperatist lesbians once bought the house next door to me and I began to hold a grudge against all lesbians. Let's just say I globalized my experinece with these insufferable women, but in time I learned that they were not representative of anything but themselves.

Regarding children, those existing and not, I am reflective, Chip. I wrote a thing called 'Mothers Who Kill' (it's somewhere at godammit.com) that upset people very much when I posted it elsewhere. It may introduce a perspective that no one seems to want to talk about.

I would love to hear your views, Chip, Michael, PatrickH, Clio, and just about anyone but ST, who has so rudely deemed me unfuckable in a threesome.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 20, 2008 4:20 PM



Mr Smith,

A Holocaust-denier is a man with an opinion, an opinion that may be correct or mistaken. A pedophile is a man (or woman) who has or wants to have sexual relations with children. The issue in question is not his opinion, but his conduct. The two are not comparable.

I think the Holocaust-denier is likely to be mistaken, because I cannot see how such a massive hoax could have been perpetrated, or how and why it could have convinced so many people. Perhaps Arthur Butz's book has convincing new evidence to offer, but a quick glance at his website suggests that he does not have any such thing. I am inclined to think he is motivated by some sort of fury against the state of Israel, but there are many people who disapprove of it without resorting to such tactics. Whatever the truth of his views, or his motive for holding them, he is still not in the same category as an active pedophile.

Clio

Posted by: alias clio on July 20, 2008 4:52 PM



"I would love to hear your views, Chip, Michael, PatrickH, Clio, and just about anyone but ST, who has so rudely deemed me unfuckable in a threesome."

That is such a distortion of my views. I said that the boys might decide to do each other, instead of you.

That's always a critical problem, don't you think?

Posted by: Shouting Thomas on July 20, 2008 5:47 PM



Holocaust denial seems to have some of the signs of psychopathology, wouldn't you agree, clio? Certain incessantly employed tropes, rhetorical manoeuvres, the inability to answer whole slews of questions, no matter how pressed, you know what I mean.

A pedophile who keeps his hands to himself and just thinks his ugliness is IMO definitely suffering from some kind of deep personality disorder, probably not curable. But is he qua pedophile worse than a Holocaust denier turning his Jew-hating tricks with every innocent john he can convince to listen to him? Dunno. No answers. Still...

Posted by: PatrickH on July 20, 2008 6:02 PM



Sister Wolf:

But Slumlord, wouldn't you rather write like Martin Amis than your own good self?

It's true that I'd like to write well, but that would mean not writing like Martin Amis.

Posted by: Slumlord on July 20, 2008 6:16 PM



I try - and it's a bit difficult - to assume that a Holocaust-denier might not be a Jew-hater, but simply a deluded man misled by unscrupulous manipulators.

Pedophiles? Well, I was assuming that in using this word, Mr Smith meant active pedophiles, and not merely those who defended pedophilia as a concept. Even then, the principles involved are different. A Holocaust-denier is quarrelling with public opinion about the existence of a great tragedy. He doesn't say "yes, Jews should be murdered", he says, "no, Jews were not murdered". Of course, this view assumes that many Jewish people, and their political supporters, were wicked enough to perpetrate an appalling hoax on the public, which is certainly a dreadful thing in itself, and would I assume require a certain level of anti-semitism in those who held it.

A man who engages in, or supports, pedophilia, challenges a basic precept of modern sexual mores concerning the necessity of informed consent in
all parties to any sexual act. What he says to defend his views may be less hateful than the words of a Holocaust-denier, but it is more deeply subversive of accepted moral standards. Of course, Mr Smith doesn't appear to mind challenging accepted moral standards. But once you get started in that direction, it's hard to stop.

Clio

Posted by: alias clio on July 20, 2008 8:55 PM



Slumlord, you seem to be talking about non-fic, but MA's short story, The Janitor on Mars is one of the most disturbingly brilliant things I've ever read. It was well-written too!

Posted by: PatrickH on July 20, 2008 9:19 PM



Without being an expert, I've always thought of Holocaust Deniers as a fascinating species of nutcase, kind of like people who wear tin foil in their hats to keep the Feds from listening to their thoughts.

Paedophiles are mentally ill but also a real danger to children. If they're Henry Darger, they're pretty good artists, If they're members of NAMBA, they are hilarious, with all due respect of course.

ST, I can't even tell if you're trying to be funny, because I'm not a Filipina, as you have pointed out more than once.

PatrickH, pretty soon people around here are going to figure out and you and I are, you know, an Item...

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 21, 2008 1:36 AM



Didnt read all the comments (way too many). But its telling that the first truly relentlessly negative comments came from Cheryl - a, wait for it, female.

Guess loss of unearned Status can be a bitch.

As for the posters saying things like - be kinder, gentler and women will listen. By and large that is not the point. The point is women need to be TOLD, not convinced. Of course, 95% of the people who grew up in the west cannot even think this anymore - a silent conspiracy, faux pas whatever. Nonetheless its true.

I wish Box.net had some kind of download stats - Im curious as to how many people read those articles by now. If its even 25% young males - thats a significant effect.

Posted by: Mensarefugee on July 21, 2008 10:03 AM



Sister, in the immortal words of Bonnie Raitt: Let's give them something to talk about!

Posted by: PatrickH on July 21, 2008 10:33 AM



Sister Wolf:

Thanks for the tip. I'll check out your essay and get back with you.

Others:

The idea that Holocaust revisionism/denial is symptomatic of some base pathology or moral lapse is too easy and convenient, at least for my taste. This seemingly ubiquitous position seems to be the operative first refuge among those make little effort to gain familiarity with the substance of HR/HD arguments, instead preferring to credulously rely on the confident assurances of others who, often and ironically, may have their own psychological motives for wishing to preemptively discredit dissident views.

Germar Rudolf was extradited from the United States (his appeals for political amnesty were explicitly denied by the INS) and thrown into a German hoosegow for writing boring and abstruse chemical engineering reports, the substance of which I am in no way qualified to address. David Cole, a Jewish-atheist and skeptic, was literally threatened into hiding by Irv Rubin's criminal organization after he deigned to publicly challenge technical aspects of the conventional Auschwitz genocide narrative. I don't know Germar, but I did correspond with David back in the mid-90s before the JDL effectively shut him up. And for what it's worth, he always struck me as an impeccably rational and good-humored chap without a hateful (or self-loathing) bone in his body. He didn't give a damn about lurid Zionist machinations or whatever. He was simply a careful skeptic who loved science and truth and who was drawn to Holocaust revisionism because it presented a unique intellectual challenge. And he was always willing to be shown where he might be in error. If David were still playing in the public arena, I suspect he would delight in debunking the claims put forward by the 911-Truth gang.

For those who are inclined to believe that the other side of genocide represents the "apotheosis of irrationality" (I think that's Lipstadt's phrase), I recommend checking out Cole's sharp, if low-rent, documentary, "David Cole Interviews Dr. Franciszek Piper," along with his "46 Questions" paper, both of which are easy to find in the tubes. I also recommend Samuel Crowell's samizdat monograph, The Gas Chambers of Sherlock Holmes, which reads like a palimpsest to Elaine Showlalter's "Hystories." Here's a link to the best online edition of that one:

http://www.codoh.com/newsite/articles/samuelcrowell/xsherlock.pdf

I think I will defend the overlooked wisdon of pedophiles in a separate comment to follow, since I cracked the lid on this sordid business.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 21, 2008 11:04 AM



Both Clio and Cheryl have excellent points here. Re what Cheryl said -- people here seem to be so heavily invested in slamming educated women that they are resistant to data. A ton of research now shows divorce rates for college-educated women are plunging to levels lower than they were in 1970 (the beginning of the feminist era). In addition, marriage rates for college-educated women have gone way up compared to marriage rates for educated women among previous generations. These facts are simply not consistent with a story where feminism turns educated American women into shrieking harridans who can't find a man.

The weakness of Mike Blowhard's response shows the difficulty he has dealing with this information. Essentially, he takes out a tiny sliver of American women -- "the gals who come out of Stanford and Skidmore and head for the coastal bright lights", the "miserable women" he sees in Manhattan book publishing, and a couple of essentially fictional examples from popular culture (Sex and the City, blogs about "game") that have little relevance to the great majority of real lives. Then he says that this counteracts all the information about what's actually going on in the U.S.!

Look, there's no denying that the world of Manhattan arts and media is hellishly shallow and annoying. But that is *not the real world*. We seem to have a bunch of people whose personal experiences have pissed them off about women -- just like a lot of women get pissed off about men -- and then they extrapolate this jaundiced viewpoint to the world at large.

Oh, also, Devlin's essay is fun to read if you're a man annoyed at the opposite sex. The irritating thing about some pop discourse is the frequent assumption of moral superiority for women, which he certainly has some funny slams on. But there are a host of things that he gets straightforwardly wrong. E.g., women's attraction is not driven by how much money you make. You're good with women and attractive or you're not, money makes only a marginal difference.

Posted by: MQ on July 21, 2008 11:39 AM



Mr Smith,

I can't speak for your other critics, but I did not start my own criticism by announcing that holocaust-deniers must suffer from any psychopathology. I said that I thought it was a bit disingenuous to couple Holocaust-denial and pedophilia in the same post, as if they were similar issues.

I imagine that it is possible, in theory, to find a rational basis for Holocaust-denial, but I do not think that Arthur Butz has done so. His website, and the various websites devoted to his work and that of other Holocaust-deniers, does not show any marked degree of historical knowledge, familiarity with the use of historical evidence to support a case, or any other analytical ability that would incline me to take him seriously as a thinker. I would have to read his book to determine whether it offers a more substantive reason for doing so, but I am not terribly optimistic about it.

The essence of Butz's argument appears to be that Britain and the US wanted to support the creation of Isreael so they tortured captured Nazis into confessing to genocidal crimes they did not commit, and that there is no other evidence for the Holocaust than these confessions. I must point out that those whose strongest support for their cases is accusing their opponents of lying tend, in general, not to have a strong case, although there may be exceptions.

As I mentioned in a previous comment, I have had every opportunity to witness the exploitation and distortion of history for political reasons, and I know that torturing witnesses, the destruction of records, or the planting of false records, is seldom necessary to do so. All you've got to do is confuse people to get a large number of them on your side. This is especially true in the modern age, when so many incompatable theories, "facts", and explanations are dancing around in everyone's heads, and most people lack the tools to evaluate them. If the Holocaust were a hoax, it would be a supremely unnecessary one.

Finally, I think I've already said that I don't believe in prosecuting anyone for their ideas, however obnoxious. To turn the discussion back to this theme while ignoring my questions about the soundness of the case for Holocaust denial is a piece of disingenuous bait-and-switch. If you insist on doing so, however, I'll say it again: I don't believe in harassing, prosecuting, arresting, or imprisoning Holocaust-deniers. If one of them were a professor of history, however, and I were his dean, I might fire him, for academic incompetence - unless he made a much stronger case for his position than the (engineering) professor Arthur Butz has done. I must point out, too, that Butz, as a professor of engineering rather than history, has not been fired from his job.

Clio

Posted by: alias clio on July 21, 2008 12:13 PM



Clio,

Thank you for your clarification, although I should perhaps clarify, in turn, that my comment was thrown more in the direction of PatrickH and SW, both of whom were more explicit in consigning Big H heretics to the ranks of the mentally unstable. Of course, I should have been more specific.

My intention was -- and remains -- to address your point (regarding the imputed distinction between dubious ideas and criminal predilections) in a separate comment later in the game, assuming this lively and digressive thread remains active. No bait & switch intended, I promise. Just a simple matter of weighing my time on a busy workday.

Anyway, now that you have given me a bit more to chew on, I shall do my best to fashion a fair reply just as soon time permits.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 21, 2008 4:16 PM



Chip Smith got my name into this thread with his left hand, then suggested I take a look at how it's going. I just have. I won't get into Butz and revisionism generally, it's an immense topic. I would like to leave folk with a simple question I have been asking academics since this past February -- more than 1,000 professors to date. None has volunteered an answer, and none has suggested he would allow himself to take part in a conversation about the question.

Here goes then: "Can you provide, with proof, the name of one person who was killed in a gas chamber at Auschwitz?"

That is, after more than 60 years of forwarding the Auschwitz gas-chamber contraption story, it appears to remain taboo to have a conversation about it in the academic world.

Posted by: Bradley Smith on July 21, 2008 4:18 PM



May I ask for a quick clarification? Why are the '9/11 Truth Gang' nuttier than Holocaust Deniers? Less "documentation" of their position, or just less provoking to conventional received wisdom?

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 21, 2008 4:25 PM



Feminism doesn't turn women into shrieking harridans who can't find a man. Women are no more shrieking or harridany today than they were forty years ago...maybe less. Feminism doesn't really affect women at all. Or men. It is an effect, not a cause. Feminism is one of the great intellectual non-stories of the last century. It has never been subjected to any really searching analysis (i.e., analysis by men) and nor will it be. Nor does it deserve to be. Men have better things to do (like analyzing the world), and women have better things to do than making stuff that even needs to be analyzed in the first place.

The cliches, stereotypes and generalizations about men and women that abound in our society (and which can usually only be stated aloud by standup comedians) are by and large true. Feminism is subsumed entirely within those differences. It is produced by women for women, and it is about women and nothing else. It is of no interest or value to any man as a man, or as a human being. It has changed nothing important, because women cannot produce important change themselves. Only men can do that.

Women still want men, still want to be with men, marry them, have their children. Feminism has damaged women by making a very small subsection of them feel bad about this. Far too many members of that subsection write for the New York Times. There is no more of a war today between the sexes than there has ever been.

In general, I think men and women are doing pretty well, all things considered. The brief and odd years of early post-60s feminism are now behind us. Today, we're trying to work out how to live with one another in a world (mostly the world of work) where we see a lot more of one another. We're still struggling with dating, romance and sex in a world with birth control, porn, and, and, and...porn! And we're realizing, men and women both, that no matter how much we scream about the flaws of the other, neither sex is ever. going. to. change.

All in all, there are no crises between men and women. No need for either revolutionary or reactionary change. Just the usual courtesies, smiles, sidelong glances...and hot sweaty sex!

Of which, I predict, there will be just as much ten, twenty and fifty years from now, as there is today.

Posted by: PatrickH on July 21, 2008 4:53 PM



I am not sure of the arguments put forth by Devlin about women being hypergamic. Gay men, for example, who are not being constrained by women, are known to be promiscuous, in keeping with the male tendency to look around. On the other hand, I thought that lesbian women pair bond for long periods and are not known to be promiscuous or into polygamy by serial monogamy. Is my impression correct? If so, how does it square with Devlin's hypergamy argument

Posted by: JM on July 21, 2008 6:00 PM



Demographic trends may ensure that life standards will decline over time, but I've said before that the end of civilization is a tangible reality for every being who lives yet to die. This simple insight is often dismissed as an immature (or arrogant) flight response, but as a simple statement of our fate I submit it is obdurate and true. I rest better knowing that my kids -- the ones I won't have -- will not have to worry about the instauration. Sure, they won't get to enjoy baba ghanouj either, but nor will they miss it. Those who are never brought into existence are spared every deprivation, and every slight, up to and including the end of civilization, i.e., death.

Wow Chip you are right bro. What an unslefish act. I wish my parents would not of been so selfish as to have me. What we need is suicide to be made legal and painless so people who don't like it here can just leave. Kind of like abortion is ok. So we could just leave the planet if we wanted no need to stay. Then you could have your kids and they would have real freedom of choice so if they didn't like it they could just leave. That is the worste part having to stay on the planet when you don't want to because your afraid of God.

Posted by: Gunslingergregi on July 21, 2008 7:33 PM



"I try - and it's a bit difficult - to assume that a Holocaust-denier might not be a Jew-hater, but simply a deluded man misled by unscrupulous manipulators."

The only Holocaust-denier I ever knew didn't strike as particularly anti-Semitic. Certainly not a Jew-hater. He was a German who couldn't stand the idea of his country being implicated in such horrible crimes. A nice fellow, but a bit dim.

It's true, I think, that Holocaust-as-hoax implies some massive Jewish conspiracy, but not everybody follows through on the implications of their beliefs.

Posted by: intellectual pariah on July 21, 2008 8:35 PM



I'm not about to forbid anything, but can I urge everyone to steer clear of the Holocaust-denial topic? The posting and topic have a couple of already-touchy-enough subjects, namely relations-between-the-sexes as seen by a more-paleo-than-thou writer, and the benefits or non-benefits of letting yourself do some "dangerous" reading. I really don't want to see the thread hijacked by kooks, or spin off in distasteful directions. Thanks.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on July 21, 2008 9:36 PM



I'm with you, Michael. But perhaps you might let someone answer the 'question' posed by Bradley Smith, since he was allowed to raise it here.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 21, 2008 11:33 PM



PatrickH's comment above is right on. The forces that draw men and women together are not fragile. They are too powerful to be upset by a few ideologues in the Manhattan publishing industry. Furthermore, there always has and will always be friction between men and women, because we need and demand so much from each other. The prefeminist 50s-60s were full of cliches about hostility between the sexes...as were all the decades and centuries before them, going back to the dawn of time.

Well-off, college-educated, middle-class Americans understood very well the impracticality of feminist ideology and therefore adapted to preserve marriage. Hence the plunge in divorce rates among this group. The poorer groups have difficulty with marriage because modern individualism and materialism stresses it.

The vast social changes in the role of women were fundamentally driven by economic and technological change, as well as the general move toward a more individualist society that has been occurring since the 18th century Enlightenment. Feminism was just the froth on top of that wave.

Posted by: MQ on July 21, 2008 11:51 PM



Michael, I don't have any wish to pursue the Holocaust-denial issue, although I did challenge one of the commenters about it. You say you want to discourage hijacking by kooks, which I can well understand. But - forgive me - did you not also say you wanted to discuss 'the benefits or non-benefits of letting yourself do some "dangerous" reading'? How is it possible to do this and not acknowledge that one of the 'non-benefits' of dangerous reading is that it may provoke nasty diatribes, or bring out kooks? I mean, that's precisely the reason, or one of the reasons, why certain books and ideas are regarded as dangerous.

Bertrand Russell defined the Romantic as one who "liberates the tiger from its cage and then admires the graceful leaps with which it devours the spectators". I sometimes wonder if a certain type of libertarian doesn't let the tiger out of its cage because he mistook it for a pussy-cat.

Clio

Posted by: alias clio on July 21, 2008 11:53 PM



You have to admit that Holocaust revisionism is pretty un-PC.

Posted by: lemmy caution on July 22, 2008 12:55 AM



Clio,

I appreciate the gesture of civility, but please feel free to call me Chip.

Truth is, I'm feeling a bit guilty, since it's clear that this thread has broken off into disparate directions (antinatalism, pedophilia, Holocaust heresy), which relate only tangentially to Michael's original focal point, which of course was F. Roger Devlin's impolitic essay on the sufficiently volatile subject of contemporary sex relations. This is my fault, of course. While I think I had a legitimate point in making reference to my experience in reading about Bradley's experience in reading Butz, I should have known better than to drop so many daisycutters in one place. But since I did, and since you have politely asked for my clarification, here goes.

First off, I was being semi-facetious with my reference to "unrepentant pedophiles" (I'm going to stick with the American spelling, since it's shorter), but I suppose I would still reject (or at least question the scope of) the distinction you propose. While pedophilia may narrowly describe a category of criminal conduct as defined by statute, it also describes a category of preference, or a predisposition, or, horror or horrors, an orientation. (Since I take a broadly Szaszian view of human heterogeneity, I'm going to dismiss the view that pedophiles are "mentally ill.") Having thus broadened the definition, we may puzzle that among those who fall into this universally reviled group there are those who are yet "unrepentant." I submit that the adjective alone begs the salient question: why? Could be they're just evil, or irrational, or in denial, or all of the above. Or, it could be that they have an argument, albeit one disallowed by the prevailing moral worldview. But if pedophiles have an argument -- say, an argument that poses a radical challenge to our cherished presumptions about the children's sexuality, or sanctity of childhood itself, or the nature of consent -- doesn't this place them on some intellectual footing, however unsound we might assume or determine that footing to be?

Why not ask Judith Levine? While not a pedophile, she was loudly excoriated as one on the floor of Congress when her book, "Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children From Sex," became the touchstone of a short but intense talk-radio-fueled episode of hysterical and politically amplified controversy a few years back. Or why not ask Bruce Rind and the scholars who teamed with him to write up a similarly reviled APA-published meta-analysis, which drew fury from the same chambers for questioning -- with empirically derived survey data -- the conventional view that children are invariably and severely harmed by sexual contact with adults. In both cases, critics argued that pedophiles would find comfort in such works. And so they did. They sought and found comfort because, predictably, pedophiles view such works as lending support to their marginalized opinions, such as they are. Much, I suppose as anti-Semites grasp at the full range of revisionist scholarship (from Chomsky to Butz) to support their unseemly worldview. In both cases, we may be confronting scoundrels. I believe we are also, and more essentially, confronting a point of view.

I'm not sure how far I want to wade with the Butz thing. Especially since my point was not by any means to defend his views, but to underscore the importance of addressing inflammatory ideas in good faith (the theme of the excerpt I quoted from Bradley's memoir). But I did read Butz's book, years ago. I read the whole thing. It's certainly as dense and labored -- and mind-numbingly boring -- as anything I've ever encountered by a working historian, which Butz acknowledges and emphasizes he is not. "The Hoax of the Twentieth Century" is meticulously referenced, and it includes much material that I recall being severely critical of early revisionist scholarship, such as that by Paul Rassinier for example. If you want to get a better sense of where he's coming from, the entire text of his infamous tome is now freely available online at:

http://www.vho.org/GB/Books/thottc/

Perhaps a careful reading will solidify your initial impression. Perhaps not. In my poorly informed opinion, however, your take on Butz's central argument is at least an oversimplification. To my mind, the intriguing aspect of his thesis hinges not on conspiracy, but epistemology.

That's the rub with Holocaust revisionism; so much of it centers on the dual interpretation of known events and documentary evidence. Where reference to the "Final Solution" may be contextually read to mean "deportation," mainstream scholars will argue that this owes to careful subterfuge on the part of those wily brownshirts. When revisionists emphasize that death tolls at the Eastern camps were astronomically high due to the typhus (which took the life of Anne Frank), mainstream historians will argue that this was a small part of the story, which absolutely involved a calculated plan of mass extermination. When mainstream historians struggle to explain the "silence of the Vatican" or the failure of the International Red Cross to see what was happening, or the complicity of "ordinary Germans," revisionists are ready with a starkly different explanation. When revisionists point out that Zyklon B is cliometrically -- and forensically -- demonstrated to have been used -- copiously -- for delousing and disinfection purposes, mainstream historians may argue that the dual purpose of the chemical poison was intentional, or that the nefarious use grew out of the benevolent use. And the problem of dual interpretation is sustained with reference to the source of evidence that most people intuitively -- and wrongly, in my view -- find most compelling: that provided by eyewitness testimony. When mainstream historians point to voluminous eyewitness accounts of gas chamber exterminations at select camps, revisionists will counter that such testimony may be presented with reference to camps where no such exterminations are alleged to have taken place, such as Dachau. (They may also point to the similar wealth of eye-witness accounts provided for withcraft or UFO abductions, or ritual abuse at preschools, the reality of none of which is presently believed by serious people.)

I am not ducking your account of Butz's views. All of these interpretive points -- with the possible exception of the forensic evidence re the use of hydrocyanic gas -- are central to the meat of Butz's argument, ponderously presented as it is. Even his emphasis on machinations -- on perverted victor's justice, and the business of quo vadis, if you wish -- is, I think, more nuanced than you suggest. To get a sense of the complex skein of circumstances that he views as having contributed to the emergence of the prevailing narrative, just read his accounts of rumor-bred "black propaganda," or his discussion of the psycho-dynamics of torture, or his not infrequent analogies to witchcraft hysteria. Clearly, Butz thinks some parties were vested with explicitly political motives for legitimating belief in unique German monstrosity, but in my opinion, a fair reading of his book does not support the more simplistic idea that he's promoting some sort of conveniently packaged tale of collusion and conspiracy. That's the cartoon version.

Finally, I want to mention that my use the term "revisionism" -- rather than "denial" or "negationism" -- above is advised. I don't normally eschew the more common terms because everyone uses them and I'm really not a stickler. But I'm trying to be reasonably careful here. Because even if Butz's account of what happened during the Second World War were somehow shown to be essentially true, I would have no compunction in describing the veritable horror of what remains -- Nazi racism, pogroms, forced internment, vast death due to the ravages of lice-borne disease and starvation and infrastructural collapse, in short, the stuff no one denies -- as a Holocaust. And I mean this. I mean this just as sincerely as I mean it when I say no one should ever have children.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 22, 2008 2:13 AM



Erratum: In my reply to Clio, I meant to write "cui bono?," not "quo vadis?" A Latin brain fart.

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 22, 2008 4:32 AM



http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/feb/22/secondworldwar.religion

Némirovsky, a Kiev-born Jewish woman, had settled in France with her wealthy family after the Russian revolution; become a literary celebrity on a par with Colette in 1930s Paris; was refused French citizenship shortly before the second world war broke out; and, in 1942, was deported to Auschwitz where she died, a stateless Jew, aged 39....

Similarly her husband wrote frantically to the German ambassador in Paris after Irène's arrest, pleading for her to be released: "[E]ven though my wife is of Jewish descent, she does not speak of the Jews with any affection whatsoever in her works." The letter didn't save his wife - she died from typhus in Auschwitz on August 17 1942. Michel was arrested and gassed in Auschwitz on November 6.

Posted by: blah on July 22, 2008 7:35 AM



A. Clio -- There's a distinction between public acts and reading, no? I'd be the last person to suggest that a public policy of anything goes always and everywhere is a wise idea. (Hey, I lived thru the '60s.) But one's private reading? ... Part of the fun and value (for many, anyway) of art and ideas is the chance to play with things and try things out. "The Godfather," "Macbeth" -- why not identify with the bad guy for a few hours? See what it's like! Same with ideas. Give 'em a spin, take 'em out for a drive. I agree that there are a few people who'll react to unrestricted reading in bizarre ways -- but they're going to be bizarre anyway. For the rest of us, it can be wonderfully liberating. Not that I'd force it on anyone, of course.

MQ -- That's a funny idea, that big-city life and works of immense popular impact and success aren't a part of "real life"! And that trends in popular taste and behavior aren't worth taking note of and trying to puzzle out! So much for cultural commentary! BTW, I think it's totally worthwhile to point out that most women aren't like the gals who are described by Devlin and Roissy. On the other hand, most people in the '60s weren't hippies -- but it isn't as though "the '60s" didn't happen.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on July 22, 2008 8:42 AM



Incidentally, let me point out one benefit of un-PC reading: It has provoked a rollicking and free-wheeling conversation in this very comments-thread.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on July 22, 2008 11:11 AM



The culprit of the current dating scene nightmare is the unrestrained narcissism of so many people today. For both sides, male and female, it's all a cold calculation about what the potential mate can do for them. Giving isn't in the lexicon. No need to invoke the specter of feminism, which in any case doesn't explain the equally horrid behavior of men today.

I think it's true that radical feminism is a coastal elite thing - I rarely encounter it in Arizona.

Posted by: Todd Fletcher on July 22, 2008 2:35 PM



If only people could have a discussion without resorting to words like 'meta' 'nuanced' and 'epistomology!'

I believe that ideas can be expressed without all the hifalutin blather....they were once, anyway.

Thanks!

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 22, 2008 3:36 PM



Michael, you may choose not to publish this email; it's my attempt at a response to Chip Smith and his previous posts on the subject.

Chip,

As I'm not an expert in Holocaust research, I cannot begin to address the issues involved in Holocaust revisionism seriously, and in any case Michael Blowhard doesn't want us to turn the discussion in that direction. However, I still don't think that Mr Butz has made a particularly good case for himself. His summary of his views in "A short introduction to the study of Holocaust revisionism" (Daily Northwestern: 1991, May 13) raises several immediate questions, even to someone like me with relatively limited knowledge of the facts of the Holocaust.

1) Why does this article skim over the fate of German Jews, who also disappeared in large numbers (from 200,000 at the start of the war to 15,000 at the end), unless it doesn't fit his case well?

2) Why were concentration camp prisoners, Jewish and otherwise, worked so hard and fed so poorly (12 hours/1000 caloris per diem), and given such primitive medical attention, if the object of the camps was not ultimately to kill them? Mr Butz concentrates on the "gassing" issue to such an extent that he appears to sidestep the issue of deliberate extermination by other means.

3) The idea, which he states as fact, that the invading Soviets found "no such scenes [of mass extermination]", appears to be very controversial. It appears that many Soviet archives have been lost; other Soviet records, though, do assert that Russian soldiers found evidence of extermination at the camps. These other records appear to have been dismissed by Holocaust revisionists, but I can't see why. The Soviets detested Nazi Germany so bitterly that they are unlikely to have concealed evidence of Nazi wrongdoing.

4) Butz cites ignorance on the part of the Vatican and other institutions of the extermination of Jews. I can't speak of the other groups, but I know that in fact the Vatican was far more deeply involved in attempts to save Jews than is commonly recognised now. This slander against the Vatican did not get under way until the early 1960s; until then, it was generally recognised by most sources, including Jewish ones, that the Vatican and Catholic groups had been very active in Jewish rescue attempts. There is a piece in First Things about this, available on line at http://www.firstthings.com/article.php3?id_article=2040&var_recherche=goldhagen. You may find the journal suspect because it's Catholic, but check out its citations and draw your own conclusion. That doesn't prove the existence of gas chambers, Butz's main issue with the conventional Holocaust narrative; it does prove that the Vatican was aware that Jews were in grave danger and offered assistance. My point here: a reference to the Vatican's ignorance of/indifference to the fate of the Jews that Butz uses to support his case is not in fact decisive.

5) Butz speaks of other precedents for blindness on the part of historians, citing anti-witch hysteria, and the Donation of Constantine. Neither of these is really comparable to the purported invention of a widely-accepted Holocaust mythology. The Donation of Constantine forgery appeared at a time (@AD 725-50) when Europe was still living in the chaos of the Dark Ages. It was not until centuries later, esp. after the fall of Constantinople in 1453 accelerated the growth of new learning and textual criticism, that anyone had the means to question the Donation seriously.

As for the anti-witch-hysteria, the implication that this gripped millions of people at once, for a long period of time, and went unchallenged by any serious thinkers, is simply false. It is true that for centuries many millions of people, including the educated, believed in the existence of witches with supernatural powers, but this belief seldom erupted into mass trials or executions. When it did do so, the resulting hysteria was usually intense but very localized. In jurisdictions in which the habit of sending capital cases to higher courts for review was firmly established, people were unlikely to be executed for witchcraft and the witch-panics were usually cut short. Many people, including clerics, did indeed express doubts about witchcraft at the height of the hysteria; the chief Inquisitor of Spain was one of them, and was thus able to put a stop to anti-witch agitation in that kingdom. Even Early Moderns, in short, were not wholly immune to reason, common sense, and the demands of justice.

So I believe that the idea that masses of people could create, accept, and promote an imaginary "Holocaust" that would go unchallenged by almost every serious historian or scholar - unlike the witch trials in their own time - seems preposterous. I do not think that Butz's use of this trope to make a point is convincing.

I'm sure there's much else to be said on the subject, but I will leave it to someone more learned in Holocaust studies and the history of WWII than I am.

Posted by: alias clio on July 22, 2008 5:17 PM



Since I take a broadly Szaszian view of human heterogeneity, I'm going to dismiss the view that pedophiles are "mentally ill."

I stopped reading right there. No one is mentally ill, it's all a game, we are all equal, brains mean nothing, and they can't have any problems with them more subtle than brain death or an axe through the head.

Sigh. One of the problems with giving "dangerous ideas" the benefit of the doubt is that you end up talking to persistent morons and scum, people who are rightly ostracized by society. Someone who defends pedophilia? Scum. Maybe a NAMBLA member. Certainly not someone I'd want around my kids. And certainly not someone I'd want going to bat for my ideas in any intellectual discussion.

Posted by: blah on July 22, 2008 6:41 PM



Blah, I once posted a story about "zoophiles" (people who are sexually attracted to animals, in this case, horses.)

Someone actually commented disparagingly "You know nothing about zoophiles."

Just substitute "paedophiles" or anything else.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on July 22, 2008 10:09 PM



One of the reasons I hate lawyers so much, is that their commitment to their client outweighs their commitment to the truth. In their courtroom antics, the point is not to find out what happened, rather, the object of the endeavor is to put their client's "spin" on the presented evidence; the truth is damned. I have no problem with different interpretations of evidence being presented for consideration, but I do have a problem when evidence is deliberately misrepresented or ignored in order to push an agenda. Our Left wing media in particular have a good habit of “failing to report” bits of news which do not correspond to their world view.

The reason why Holocaust deniers, anti-fluoridation activists, anti-immunisation groups, naturopaths, greenies and others are nut jobs, lies not in their claims, but in the evidence of their thought processes. Their thought processes are diseased. They, like Al Gore, have a habit of ignoring “inconvenient truths”

Take the anti-immunisation group. These people constantly claim that immunisation is a net harm to the community despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Sane minds have considered their views, tested them and found them wanting. The response from the nut jobs? The evidence which doesn't accord to their view of things has been fabricated or suppressed. Facts that don't accord with their views are denied legitimacy and dismissed. Soon it becomes a habit of mind. They demand of others an open mind while practicing the opposite themselves.

The problem is however, that these bastards do cause harm by feeding bullshit to people who have an inadequate knowledge of the field. Muslim fundamentalists in Africa have stopped giving kids polio vaccine, believing that the vaccine is a western plot to cause the kids harm. Guess what? Polio is making a comeback in bits of Africa. We’re constantly pumping shit into the air because of an irrational fear of nuclear power promulgated by Greenpeace and Co. Genetically modified food—nearly universally supported by any scientific study of the subject—gets prohibited by the ignorant under the influence of the stupid.

I’m quite happy for nut jobs to have the right to speak, but that it be restricted to forums where it won’t cause harm. I have no problem with David Irving having total freedom of speech in making his anti- Holocaust claims in academic journals, where other experts can debate him. But then again, I also have no problem with his books being prohibited for general publication. His inability to win over the fair and considered opinion of the informed should not give him the right to argue with those who have no capability to test his claims.

Posted by: Slumlord on July 22, 2008 11:38 PM



Take the anti-immunisation group. These people constantly claim that immunisation is a net harm to the community despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Sane minds have considered their views, tested them and found them wanting. The response from the nut jobs? The evidence which doesn't accord to their view of things has been fabricated or suppressed. Facts that don't accord with their views are denied legitimacy and dismissed. Soon it becomes a habit of mind. They demand of others an open mind while practicing the opposite themselves.
----------------------------------
You seem to be as diseased as they are.
And if sane people today still believe fluoridation is good, Im living on the wrong planet.

Posted by: mensarefugee on July 22, 2008 11:54 PM



Folks,

I think it's time for me to eat some worms, but I wanted to say thanks to Clio and everyone else for keeping things lively, thoughtful, and congenial. I may try to pick up on some loose ends over at The Hoover Hog, where I do my scribbling. If I do, I'll let Michael know in case he wants to pass it along.

Best,

Chip

Posted by: Chip Smith on July 23, 2008 11:28 AM



Agnostic --

Crime has fallen because we've gotten deeper into the baby bust demographics -- fewer young men to commit crimes, and a prison-sentencing revolution that keeps violent criminals in prisons longer.

However, a great mass of unattached men kept in shallow substitution with porn and video games is a social disaster. Large pools of young men with no wives/girlfriends or hope of same generally results in violence. As the young men gang together, and create brutal violence to overthrow the old system and create a new gang-hierarchy of rape and subjugation. It's part of the chronic instability of Africa, much of the ME, and every other place the "big man" who is socially dominant controls the power. As has happened with the sexual revolution of the pill, condom, female equality and financial independence, and lastly feminism.

Western society is built upon massive resource mobilization of men with families or reasonable expectation of same. Men who die in droves for that right, can pass on innovation (often done bottom up, and continually improved over generations on their own families account), and have much greater overall resources to use than societies of an Emperor and slaves (and young men in the bush/jungle/desert whatever ready to ally with an enemy to overthrow the Emperor and take all the women).

That was the "trap" that human society fell into early on in the transition from hunter-gatherer rough egalitarianism, into pastoral and agricultural hierarchical societies. One man with four wives = three men without, and much violence.

Brutal violence has always been the trump card those without women can play, and it's folly to think "it can't happen now!" The folly that elitist aristos and women often tell themselves.

Chip Smith -- the future belongs to those who show up for it. Which will be: Muslims, Mormons, and Evangelicals. None of whom are likely to share your views. "Return of the Patriarchy" as Mark Steyn dubbed it. None of those folks are likely to be manning Greenpeace, thirty years out.

Trends are clear: in the UK, 50% of births illegitimate, in the US 34% among whites (compared to 4% in 1965, and 24% among Blacks that year). In the Black Community, it is 70% nationwide (according to NPR's Juan Williams) and 90% in the urban core. We are at the death of the nuclear family, the organizing principle of the West, and likely to see great violence in it's demise.

Posted by: whiskey on July 23, 2008 7:11 PM



I go away on vacation, and miss all the fun! It's gonna take me forever to wade through this whole thread; looking forward to it!

Anyway, you're welcome, Michael; and in case no-one has mentioned it yet, there's a new Devlin essay posted at The Last Ditch:

www.thornwalker.com/ditch/devlin_home_ec_03.htm

Cheers! :)

Posted by: anon on July 23, 2008 11:52 PM



1. Female equality
2. Trophy wife bones her yoga instructor and she STILL gets to keep the house
3. Rape gangs
4. Mormons
5. Profit?

Posted by: Sister Y on July 24, 2008 11:03 AM



I would just like to ask how everyone managed to find the link that everyone is talking about here. The first paragraph has a link to MB's old post and Roissy's blog. The next three paragraphs have no links. The fifth has a link to the man who is Thursday. Sixth: Occidental Quarterly. In the seventh, there are mentioned five different Devlin articles, none of them identified as the one we're talking about. I'll assume it's one of the first three, but I wish the post had just started with a link.

Posted by: Noumenon on July 24, 2008 12:23 PM



I am a young male and Mr. Devlin's essays, while a bit extreme, are NOT inaccurate. It MAY only be accurate on the coasts, and not in the flyover states. But here in the NYC area, every girl deserves a 6'2 movie star apparently. The shallowness and entitlement of the young, attractive females is almost unbelievable. I know I'm not alone. There are many of us - young, lonely, and angry. Most of us are gentle, but animal natures only can endure so much testing. In the next few years, the revolution will begin. Feminists will be wishing for the 1950's again, trust me.

And that stuff about the men who have their cheating wives and family courts forcefully remove their children and humiliate the dads? Wow. These educated people might be getting married, but there are going to be some rude awakenings. Men have been browbeaten into accepting a girl who's been with 15 different guys as a wife, whereas 50 years ago he could demand a virgin. Who is more likely to truly love and bond with her husband?

Men are the phsyically stronger sex. Enough is enough. More and more are willing to take back their families, by force if necessary. The fun part is - the awakening of the white American male to the war that has been waged against him is JUST BEGINNING. So grab some popcorn, maybe a cold one, and enjoy what will be a crazy next decade.

Posted by: Jeff on August 5, 2008 2:54 AM



You may want to look at the link again. New file added.

Read here: Sex and Culture

Posted by: mensarefugee on August 14, 2008 12:12 PM






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