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Author Topic: A geek speaks about women in engineering
philnotfil
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An interesting piece from a woman engineer.

chicagotribune.com

quote:
Hearing a woman's voice on the telephone, the customer insisted there must have been some mix-up. "You don't understand," he told me dismissively, "I need to talk to the engineer."

I'm used to it. As the founder and president of an architectural and engineering firm in Chicago, I know the feeling of walking into a room to meet other engineers and seeing puzzled expressions on their faces: Why is this woman in the room? Here's a better question to be posed in engineering circles: Why aren't more women in the room?

quote:
In an economy increasingly reliant on technological mastery, the United States needs all the bright engineering minds it can muster. China and India are now producing engineers at a faster rate than America does. This poses a grave peril for our global competitiveness.
quote:
It is important to recognize the power of socialization and peer pressure. In the early grades, girls do just as well as boys do in mathematics. It's during the middle school years, as young people start to become more self-conscious about notions of femininity and masculinity that girls start to lose confidence in their abilities to compete in math.

As students prepare to return to school, both boys and girls should be reminded that it's awesome to be smart. At the more tender ages, the stylishness of brainpower can be obscured in a culture that seems to prize superficiality more than deep thinking. The appeal of being intelligent will soon become evident to them, and so will the rewards.

I've long thought that the bolded part above was the most compelling part of the argument that math wasn't a gender specific thing.

[ September 30, 2010, 09:37 AM: Message edited by: philnotfil ]

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msquared
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I have one name to put out for this idea.

http://www.danicamckellar.com/

msquared

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Daruma28
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Or...there could be an alternative explanation.

Take this excerpt from Dr. Daniel Amneus' "The Garbage Generation"

Hypergamy
quote:
For years IBM has run a magazine ad showing two pairs of colored infant booties, pink and blue, with the question "GUESS WHICH ONE WILL GROW UP TO BE THE ENGINEER." Underneath there is this:

quote:
As things stand now, it doesn't take much of a guess. Because by and large, he is encouraged to excel in math and science. She isn't.

Whatever the reason for this discrepancy, the cost to society is enormous because it affects women's career choices and limits the contributions they might make. Only 4% of all engineers are women. Only 13.6% of all math and science Ph.D.'s are women. An encouraging, but still low, 26% of all computer professionals are women.

In the past ten years, IBM has supported more than 90 programs designed to strengthen women's skills in these and other areas. This support includes small grants for pre- college programs in engineering, major grants for science programs at leading women's colleges, and grants for doctoral fellowships in physics, computer science, mathematics, chemistry, engineering, and materials science.

We intend to continue supporting programs like these. Because we all have a lot to gain with men and women on equal footing. IBM

What IBM thinks of as the promotion of equality is better understood as the undermining of hypergamy, one of the pillars of the patriarchal system. Hypergamy, or the "marriage gradient," means that women "marry up," men "marry down." A cinder girl may hope to marry Prince Charming, but a chimney sweep cannot hope to marry Princess Charming. A male doctor might well marry a female nurse, but a female doctor would hardly consider marrying a male nurse. The female nurse may be underpaid, but in the marriage market her prospects are better than those of the female doctor because there are more desirable males she can hope to "marry up" to.

The social implications of the IBM program may be suggested by asking some other questions concerning the possessors of the blue and pink booties:

GUESS WHICH ONE IS TWENTY-FOUR TIMES MORE LIKELY TO END UP IN JAIL.

GUESS WHICH ONE IS MORE LIKELY TO END UP ON SKID ROW.

GUESS WHICH ONE IS MORE LIKELY TO COMMIT SUICIDE.

GUESS WHICH ONE IS MORE LIKELY TO EXPERIENCE A CRIPPLING ACCIDENT, TO BECOME AN ALCOHOLIC, A DRUG-ADDICT.

IBM's question implies that society's arrangements tilt in favor of males. The fact is that society's arrangements produce more male winners and more male losers. One principal reason for the success of the male winners is the knowledge that they might well be losers: they must earn their success and are motivated to earn it partly by the greater risk of failure. IBM proposes to intervene in society's arrangements to confer benefits on females which will increase the number of female winners without increasing the number of female losers. What will increase is the number of male losers, since the male engineers will be competing not only with each other but with females enjoying a conferred advantage denied to males. Another question:

WHICH ONE WILL BE PRIVILEGED TO ATTAIN STATUS BY MARRIAGE AND WHICH ONE WILL HAVE TO EARN IT FOR HIMSELF/HERSELF BY WORK AND SELF-DISCIPLINE?

With IBM interfering with "market forces" this question might have to be re-worded: "attain status by marriage or by IBM's largess." As IBM offers women more status, marriage has less to offer them-- men have less to offer them. Men's marriageability is decreased because they have relatively less to offer women; women's marriageability is decreased because they have fewer men to "marry up" to. As IBM transfers status from those more dependent on work and self-discipline to those less dependent on work and self- discipline, men will become less motivated, since the rewards for work and self-discipline are reduced. The effect, though at a higher level of income, will be what is observable in the ghetto, where women enjoying the handouts of the welfare bureaucracy and become economically and status-wise independent of men, with the consequence that large numbers of men become de-motivated and less marriageable.

Two more questions:

WHICH ONE IS MORE LIKELY TO DIVORCE HIS/HER SPOUSE? WHICH ONE WILL HAVE HIS/HER LIKELIHOOD OF DIVORCE INCREASED BY A FACTOR OF FIVE IF HE/SHE IS EDUCATED AND ECONOMICALLY INDEPENDENT?

The consequences of IBM's favors to females can be found on page 42 of Nickles and Ashcraft's The Coming Matriarchy:

[Those women] who work prefer smaller families, and fewer children means more time to devote to personal and nondomestic interests. Our survey revealed that the working woman not only prefers a smaller family but, in fact, fewer have children. Only 61 percent of the working women we surveyed had children, compared with 85 percent of the nonworking women....Our survey also showed that working women have less successful marriages....[A] woman who works was five times as likely to have a disrupted marriage as one who did not work....[W]orking wives are more than twice as likely as housewives to have had affairs by the time they reach their late thirties....Researchers have found that the longer a wife is employed, the more both partners think about divorce--an increase of one percentage point for each year of her employment. Things get worse as she earns more money. Vassar economist Shirley Johnson calculated that every $1,000 increase in a wife's earnings increases her chance for divorce by 2 percent....These working women, who earn $20,000-plus, are the most likely of all women to be separated or divorced.

According to research by three Yale sociologists, "women wed to less-educated or younger men had marital dissolution rates at least 50% greater than those marrying similarly educated or older men. Better-educated husbands brought no increased risk to the marriage....

Writing of high-achieving executive women, Edith Gilson says:

When we turn to our women's private lives, we see more reasons for distress. Surely, some of their career frustrations could be offset by the emotional support of husbands and children...but for a startling number of the women, marriage and children are comforts they live without. According to this study, the odds that an executive woman will never marry are four times greater than for the average American woman. Only 5 percent of most women age thirty and up have never wed (the 1985 Census), whereas 21 percent of our executive women have never been brides.

Even if our women do marry, the probability of their divorcing is twice as great as the norm. Thirty percent are currently divorced, and another 10 percent are on second or third marriages. Forty percent of all our women have therefore been divorced--compared with just 20 percent of most women in their same age range.

The differences between our women and their male peers are even more striking. Less than half (48 percent) of our women are currently married--compared with a whopping 96 percent of executive men....What's more, just 11 percent of the men have been divorced, compared with nearly four times as many of our women.

Many of the women I interviewed felt that men couldn't handle being married to women as or more successful then they. "Here we've gone and sweat blood to become independent, to become women the men can have intelligent conversations with-- and they don't want us!" lamented Laura, the pretty magazine editor.

A man's friends would never congratulate him for "marrying up." They would make jokes about his eligibility for membership in the Dennis Thatcher Society, an organization "honoring" the husband of the British Prime Minister. On the other hand, one of the most damning things a woman's friends can say of her (behind her back, naturally) is "Margaret married beneath herself."

Let's project IBM's program into the future. Let's suppose the wearers of the blue and pink booties grow up and both become engineers. Then:

WHICH ENGINEER IS MORE LIKELY TO BE CHILDLESS?

IF BOTH MARRY, WHICH IS LIKELY TO HAVE MORE CHILDREN WHO WILL BENEFIT FROM HIS/HER SUPERIOR EDUCATION?

Virginia Woolf thought as IBM thinks: families would make great sacrifices to educate their sons, few sacrifices to educate their daughters. She failed to understand the reason: education enables sons to have families, to provide for wives and children who would benefit from the sons' education economically and by the transmission of the knowledge and the values embodied in the education. Educating daughters does not enable them to provide for husbands, and greatly decreases likelihood of their having stable marriages. The birthrate of educated women is far lower than the birthrate of educated men. (Ms. Woolf herself was childless, as are most feminists.) What Bernard Lentz says of professional men and women of the period l890-l940 is true of other eras:

Even for the "superperformers" [the most successful professional women]...marriage still led to diminished success, resentment, and a distracting tension in their personal lives. In contrast, men at this time found marriage had numerous advantages in their climb up the professional hierarchy....

Ergo, society has a greater interest in encouraging and furthering the education of males. Educating a boy enables him to have and to support a family, to give children an advantage in life, to transmit family values and strengthen the patriarchy, to create social stability. Educating a girl enables her to escape marriage, or if she marries, to escape childbearing or to have a smaller family. Education, which increases her independence, will enable her more easily to expel her husband and inflict upon her offspring (whose custody is virtually guaranteed her) the disadvantages accompanying fatherlessness. Feminists see these options as desirable, but why should IBM or the rest of us see them as desirable?

Hypergamy worked the same way four thousand years ago. Feminist Dr. Elise Boulding writes of "Urbanization, the Rise of the State and the New Conditions for Women" in the second millennium B. C.:

What I have been describing is certainly not "equality" for women. Military action became increasingly important throughout the second millennium, and each new arms levy, each new conscription of soldiers, and each new round of booty brought home from a successful war, would enhance the power differential between women and men of the elite. The women's access to the new resources was far more limited than that of men. Power was shared, but not shared equally.

Not shared equally--meaning that the women didn't share equally with the victorious males, the males who took the risks and endured the ardors of military life and earned the booty. How much of the booty was earned by the women? None, and that is why they were lesser sharers. For every victorious male there was a defeated male who lost the booty and perhaps his freedom or his life. Dr. Boulding makes no comparison between women and these male losers--just as feminists see themselves discriminated against by the absence of women in the Senate and the upper echelons of corporate power and the engineering profession, but choose not to notice that there is a similar absence of women in prison and on Skid Row. IBM's question, carried back four millennia, would be: "Which one is more likely to earn booty?" Another relevant question would be: "Which one is more likely to have booty conferred upon him/her?" IBM's implied argument is: Since men are more likely to earn benefits, women deserve to have more benefits conferred upon them.

Feminist-economist Dr. Barbara Bergmann offers a little paradigm-story about Pink People and Blue People earning their living by picking berries on an island. Like women and men in our own society the Pinks and Blues have sex-segregated occupations. Dr. Bergmann thus illustrates "the crucial point":

If a group is segregated and furthermore is crowded into a relatively narrow segment of labor-market turf, its members will as a result be less productive, and their economic rewards will be lower.

(It is a sufficient refutation of this to point out that Senators are a segregated group occupying a narrow segment of the labor-market turf, but they do not suffer from low economic rewards.) She continues:

The line of argument will be made clearer if we resort to a simplified example. Consider an island inhabited by the two tribes of people, the Pinks and the Blues, both of whom make their living gathering berries....If all gatherers were allowed to range over the whole island, individual gatherers' yields would vary with their talent, energy, and luck. Given our assumption that the two tribes have equal average talents, the average yield per gatherer would be the same in both tribes.

However, suppose the island's territory was partitioned between the tribes, so that gatherers were allowed to pick berries only in the territory assigned to their tribe. Were each tribe assigned a share of the territory about proportional to its size, and of equal average quality per acre, then again the yield per gatherer in the two tribes should be about the same. However, suppose the Blue tribe were to be assigned exclusive possession or a disproportionately large share of territory. In that case, the work of members of the Blue tribe would on average bring in a greater yield than the work of members of the Pink tribe. If the land the Blue tribe got was higher in quality than the Pink's, the Pink tribe's disadvantage would be greater still.

Dr. Bergmann's Blues like to imagine they don't discriminate against the Pinks:

The way things are arranged on our mythical island, no one says to a Pink worker, "Because you are a Pink, we will see to it that you get less than a Blue." The mechanism that arranges for Pinks to get less is a set of rules about who may work where. As long as everyone follows the rules and all hands keep to their place, the Pinks will average less production per person than the Blues and will take home less "pay" for their efforts.

The restriction of the Pinks to a relatively small territory reduces the efficiency of labor on the island as a whole. The total number of berries picked on the island would rise were the territorial restrictions on the Pinks to be relaxed. If some Pinks were allowed into the Blues' territory, it would relieve the overcrowding in the Pinks' part of the island.

The assumption is that there is a labor shortage--one in high status occupations--never an unemployment problem.

If a boatload of social scientists were to visit the island portrayed in our example, they might hear from theoreticians belonging to the Blue tribe that its success was a sign of innately superior talent and greater attention to business. They might also hear that all Pinks voluntarily restricted themselves to their own territory. If, however, these social scientists observed the segregation of the two tribes, the relative devices used to keep Pinks from infiltrating Blue territory, they might very well conclude that the inequality of rewards was connected to the exclusion of Pinks from the Blues' territory.

What they would notice, if the Blues and Pinks resembled men and women, is the greater aggression and motivation of the Blues -- and that the island society had organized itself to utilize this greater aggression and motivation. Dr. Bergmann alludes to African societies which fail to do this:

There are certain societies in Africa where women do all of the heavy agricultural work, all of the business dealings, and all of the work of family care. The men are at leisure full time. In such a society, presumably no tasks are unsuitable for women. The designation of some jobs as unsuitable for women in any particular society is a matter of social convention rather than a reflection of women's inherent disabilities or inborn dislikes for certain kinds of work. People's ideas about suitability can and do change when the economy changes.

The problem is the waste of men's talents. Would Dr. Bergmann care to live in such a society? The jobs are equally available to men and women, but the men will not take them and therefore the society fails to thrive. There is no reason for men to work and create wealth to make themselves attractive to women because women work for themselves and because sex is unregulated and available to men without their having to work. The goals of feminism have been achieved--and society remains at the level of the Stone Age.

If men cannot outperform women they will not perform at all, and society will be lucky if male energies are merely wasted in narcissistic display rather than in disruptive violence and machismo. A man with nothing to offer a woman save a paycheck the size of her own is impossibly disadvantaged. He will know, and his wife will know that he knows, that the words "I don't need you, Mister" are always at her disposal and, thanks to the anti-male bias of the divorce court, she has an authority in the family greater than his own. Patriarchal capitalism prospers because it creates an arena of work wherein males are allowed to succeed and create wealth and where they are motivated to do so and rewarded for doing so by the satisfactions of family living.

The key idea of the alternative matriarchal/feminist system is thus stated by Faye Wattleton, President of Planned Parenthood:

Together we can work to achieve the most important goal of Planned Parenthood--to give all people the right and the ability to decide for themselves whether and when to bear children.

All people signifies all female people. Wattleton demands the right of all female people to deny to all male people any reproductive decision-making:

I believe that no woman, black or white, rich or poor, can ever truly be free without the right to control her own reproductive life. [Emphasis added]

Ms. Wattleton's pitch for "reproductive rights" and Dr. Bergmann's pitch for taking better jobs away from men to confer them on women come to the same thing: men are excluded from meaningful participation in reproduction. Men become superfluous members of families. The basis of civilized society is that men shall share equally in reproductive decision-making, and shall earn the right to do so by working. The program of feminism is to deny men this right by undermining the sexual constitution, the Legitimacy Principle, marriage and the family. When they talk about women's reproductive rights and about making women economically independent of men, this is what they mean.


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TomDavidson
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Poor Daruma. It's hard being a man, I know.
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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
Poor Daruma. It's hard being a man, I know.

Not as hard as being a mangina douche like you.
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Daruma28
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See Tom, now that's called being "Aggressive."

Not that typically passive aggressive, condescending snark that you just used like a little bitch.

Now **** off.

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Carlotta
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Responding to the original article, my suggestion would be to simply have gender segregated classes for those age groups and subjects where either gender feels pressured to underperform. Personally I have no interest in being an engineer, but for several years in middle school I went to an all-girls school (well, co-ed school but segregated classes) and in retrospect the freedom from trying to impress the opposite sex freed us up to actually learn something.

Responding to Daruma,
in another thread you lamented that public education is brainwashing and that the real purpose of education is learning to think critically. Yet now you said/quoted:
"education enables sons to have families, to provide for wives and children who would benefit from the sons' education economically and by the transmission of the knowledge and the values embodied in the education. Educating daughters does not enable them to provide for husbands, and greatly decreases likelihood of their having stable marriages. The birthrate of educated women is far lower than the birthrate of educated men."

So public education is bad because it doesn't teach people to think critically which is the sole purpose of education, yet when it comes to educating women the only result of it is not thinking critically but earning power.

And as far as controlling my reproductive life? Reproduction is a joint effort and takes two people. What's your alternative to "denying all men their reproductive right?" Women can no more have children without a man's contribution than men can without a woman's, so I guess either person holds the reproductive veto power.

Your arguments (or those that you block quote) start off being interesting to consider but you don't distinguish between the point you want us to consider and the complete insanity later in the passage. Unless you seriously agree with all of it?

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Daruma28
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Carlotta, I quoted a chapter of a book regarding Feminist social engineering. Fact is, media, education and the government have been making a concerted effort to "encourage" women into pursuing careers that were traditionally almost solely the domain of men.

The effects of this "encouragement" have a host of societal consequences for which this chapter outlines.

Furthemore, this question of yours is based on a false premise - that "education" = "compulsory public school system."

This chapter that I excerpted is specifically referencing education in engineering.

And as far as controlling my reproductive life? Reproduction is a joint effort and takes two people. What's your alternative to "denying all men their reproductive right?" Women can no more have children without a man's contribution than men can without a woman's, so I guess either person holds the reproductive veto power.

The point is that by encouraging all women to pursue careers, they are less likely to have more children. In essence, it is the form of subtle, subversive population control. The more women our society encourages to pursue high educational achievement and careers, the less children they will have.

That is the "control of reproduction" this chapter is referring to.

As for "complete insanity," pray-tell, where does the article descend into complete insanity?

Rather, it's completely politically incorrect and lays bare the "unintended" (I would say intended) consequences of living in a society for which the type of propaganda like the IBM advertisement represents is ubiquitous.

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Daruma28
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quote:
"No woman should be authorized to stay at home and raise her children. Society should be totally different. Women should not have that choice, precisely because if there is such a choice, too many women will make that one."
-- Interview with Simone de Beauvoir, "Sex, Society, and the Female Dilemma," Saturday Review, June 14, 1975, p.18

This is precisely what I meant when I sarcastically wrote in the other thread:

WOMEN ARE HUMAN RESOURCES FIRST, MOTHERS AND WIVES SECOND! NOW GET BACK TO WORK!

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Chael
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Daruma, seems to me that the mistake here is in believing that women should be one thing or another, rather than stepping back so they can make up their own minds. You wouldn't disagree with that basic premise, right? That everyone should be able to decide for himself what to do with his life, subject only to his ability to get there? Because sometimes I wonder; you seem to skate awfully close to Women Feel Happiest And Are The Most Useful In These Narrow Areas; The Others Are A Mistake!
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Rallan
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quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:
See Tom, now that's called being "Aggressive."

Not that typically passive aggressive, condescending snark that you just used like a little bitch.

Now **** off.

Funny, I thought it was called "having an unprovoked meltdown". You posted a lengthy rant on how educating women is terrible because it threatens male privilege. Tom treated it with the dignity it deserved. You went ape.
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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by Rallan:
quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:
See Tom, now that's called being "Aggressive."

Not that typically passive aggressive, condescending snark that you just used like a little bitch.

Now **** off.

Funny, I thought it was called "having an unprovoked meltdown". You posted a lengthy rant on how educating women is terrible because it threatens male privilege. Tom treated it with the dignity it deserved. You went ape.
No Rallan, you sheep****er, I'm simply responding in kind to people like you and TomD. I will give what I get. A-holes like you and TomD like to play this game of being civil while being snarky and sarcastic, and I'm no longer going to bother trying to remain "civil" with the likes of you.

That wasn't a meltdown. That was being an outright ******* to someone who puts up a civil veneer but is actually just as much of an ******* as I'm being.

Now **** off to you too.

Chael (seems I should thank you for your civility - since civility on this forum is largely a facade for the likes of TomD and Rallan) -

Daruma, seems to me that the mistake here is in believing that women should be one thing or another, rather than stepping back so they can make up their own minds.

I believe women should have the choice to live whatever life they choose to follow. I have nothing against women engineers whatsoever.

What I have, is a problem with the propaganda that permeates our mass media society that literally pushes women into directions that lead to the breakdown of society and a life full of stress (like the example of the IBM advertisement).

It's not just that women are endlessly pushed into pursuing careers like engineering...but also the current zeitgeist tries to force men and women into dual income/dual career families for which the women try to "have it all." By virtue of opportunity costs, you cannot be a GREAT MOTHER and still be a super-successful career person.

A career takes time...and that's time where somebody else is raising her kids.

Many women realize later on in life that they wished they hadn't devoted so much time to their careers and spent more time with their children...after they've been raised by public school, daycare, and than are off to college. Too many people look back and realize that the amount of time they were actually a part of their children's lives was being nothing more than several hours a day between dropping them off to school and daycare before commuting to their 9-5.

Nobody ever died and had their epitaph "If only I had spent more time at the office."

You wouldn't disagree with that basic premise, right? That everyone should be able to decide for himself what to do with his life, subject only to his ability to get there?

Because sometimes I wonder; you seem to skate awfully close to Women Feel Happiest And Are The Most Useful In These Narrow Areas; The Others Are A Mistake!


Our society is one for which every outlet of influence herds them into the "education-career" track is the only means of personal fulfillment for women today...and that marrying young and raising children is "oppressive" or "forcing them to be barefoot and pregnant, in the kitchen slaving away."

I simply wish to point out that Women have a biological clock and the instinctual drive to reproduce. Many follow the dictates of our mass media culture, than find out they have a hard time finding the right man once they decide it's time to finally have a kid in their mid to late 30's (that's how long it took them to establish their careers), or they have fertility issues, than they go the sperm donor route.

Women have the freedom to choose whatever lifestyle they want.

I'm merely pointing out that our propaganda driven society influences many of us to make choices we regret later on in life.

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TommySama
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quote:
Funny, I thought it was called "having an unprovoked meltdown".
The term is "hissy fit"

"I will give what I get. A-holes"

[ September 30, 2010, 11:33 PM: Message edited by: TommySama ]

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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by TommySama:
quote:
Funny, I thought it was called "having an unprovoked meltdown".
The term is "hissy fit"

"I will give what I get. A-holes"

No, it's called fighting fire with fire. Assholes with pretensions of superiority deserve precisely the kind of treatment that they dish out. Except they do it with a fake smile while I'm doing it with a middle finger in their weasel-ly faces.

I don't have 'hissy fits' or 'meltdowns' with 90% of the people I debate or disagree with here.

Just the out and out ******* ****heads like Rallan and TomD.

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Pyrtolin
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quote:
It's not just that women are endlessly pushed into pursuing careers like engineering...but also the current zeitgeist tries to force men and women into dual income/dual career families for which the women try to "have it all." By virtue of opportunity costs, you cannot be a GREAT MOTHER and still be a super-successful career person.
All of the same goes for men/fathers, and yet you don't seem to have any objection to subjecting them to them same pressures.
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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
It's not just that women are endlessly pushed into pursuing careers like engineering...but also the current zeitgeist tries to force men and women into dual income/dual career families for which the women try to "have it all." By virtue of opportunity costs, you cannot be a GREAT MOTHER and still be a super-successful career person.
All of the same goes for men/fathers, and yet you don't seem to have any objection to subjecting them to them same pressures.
Men don't have the biological clock issues that women do, and besides, if you read the chapter I excerpted, understand the difference in dynamics:

Men with careers gain the means to be providers and can support having families.

Women with careers find it much harder to have happy, stable families.

Men and Women are different.

Our mass media culture would brainwash us all to think otherwise.

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Chael
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Hold on a sec, Daruma. Do you think 'If only I had spent more time at the office' is an epitaph which men would be pleased to have? The 'missing out on the child's life' aspect applies as much to men as it does to women (agreed that 'having it all' is impossible for anyone of any gender), and I'm sure you don't believe that men don't care about that because they're men.
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Daruma28
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Oh, I believe that exactly. The difference here is one of base motivation under two different cultural systems: Matriarchy vs. Patriarchy.

Under Patriarchy, men work to attain the means to be providers so they can attract a mate and have children that they can support. Yes, they do miss out on time with their children...but than there children also have food to eat, a roof over their heads, and a biological parent raising them around the clock.

Under Matriarchy, women work to attain the means to be Independent of men's support.

The crucial difference is that men are dis-invested in the family, you get a matriarchal system much like primitive tribes - men have no motivation or involvement other than as sperm donors.

Which is precisely what you have in the inner city ghettos. Dis-invested men, with no role of father to aspire to. Instead, their only role is sperm donor to "baby momma" and violence.

To reiterate Dr. Amneus' point:

quote:
There are certain societies in Africa where women do all of the heavy agricultural work, all of the business dealings, and all of the work of family care. The men are at leisure full time. In such a society, presumably no tasks are unsuitable for women. The designation of some jobs as unsuitable for women in any particular society is a matter of social convention rather than a reflection of women's inherent disabilities or inborn dislikes for certain kinds of work. People's ideas about suitability can and do change when the economy changes.

The problem is the waste of men's talents. Would Dr. Bergmann care to live in such a society? The jobs are equally available to men and women, but the men will not take them and therefore the society fails to thrive. There is no reason for men to work and create wealth to make themselves attractive to women because women work for themselves and because sex is unregulated and available to men without their having to work. The goals of feminism have been achieved--and society remains at the level of the Stone Age.

This is precisely the path we are headed down.

More and more women go to college and get into careers, we now have more women who have raised their socio-economic status.

The title of the chapter is "Hypergamy." Which means women "marry up."

Now what happens when you have a society for which the majority of the women have attained higher staus than the majority of the males?

A society for which most men are not "worthy" to be married by the higher status females.

Women now outnumber men in colleges.

The majority of the jobs lost in this recession have been lost by men...so much so, it's now referred to as a "Mancession."

Things are only going to get worse if these trends continue.

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Chael
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Ah, I see, Daruma. I cannot agree with most of your basic premises. My disagreement with your premises is based entirely on my own personal experiences, and as such I will not be making a rebuttal--but I didn't want to drop out of the conversation without telling you why.
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Pyrtolin
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quote:
Under Patriarchy, men work to attain the means to be providers so they can attract a mate and have children that they can support. Yes, they do miss out on time with their children...but than there children also have food to eat, a roof over their heads, and a biological parent raising them around the clock.

Under Matriarchy, women work to attain the means to be Independent of men's support.

You pretend that it must be one ruling or the other, rather than tossing out *-archy altogether and treating people are equal individuals.

There is no universal thing that men want, there is no universal thing that woman want. each person has their own set in interests and desires, and it's not fro me, you, or anyone else to tell them that they must conform to any preconceived notions of what those might be.

Your offering the same freedom of choice that Ford offered- any color you like, as long as you like black.

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Daruma28
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Cool, Chael...just understand that I'm speaking of the big picture here, on a societal scale.

There are, of course, exceptions to everything - and your personal experiences may certainly be contrary to those that i've brought up here.

But the Macro-trends here are observable, if you care to look at it objectively and not simply dismiss me as "misogynist" or "throwing a tantrum."

For example, the notion that Father's are not necessary for a "happy family" is another meme endlessly promoted by our mass media culture.

The social pathologies of Fatherlessness are undeniable.

It's not that fatherless children can't be raised to be happy, well adjusted members of society. Some certainly do.

But many do not. For example, it is the single largest common denominator of our prison population.

[ October 01, 2010, 12:32 AM: Message edited by: Daruma28 ]

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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by Pyrtolin:
quote:
Under Patriarchy, men work to attain the means to be providers so they can attract a mate and have children that they can support. Yes, they do miss out on time with their children...but than there children also have food to eat, a roof over their heads, and a biological parent raising them around the clock.

Under Matriarchy, women work to attain the means to be Independent of men's support.

You pretend that it must be one ruling or the other, rather than tossing out *-archy altogether and treating people are equal individuals.

There is no universal thing that men want, there is no universal thing that woman want. each person has their own set in interests and desires, and it's not fro me, you, or anyone else to tell them that they must conform to any preconceived notions of what those might be.

Your offering the same freedom of choice that Ford offered- any color you like, as long as you like black.

I'm not "offering" anything. I'm talking about how human societies have organized themselves since time immemorial. Patriarchy or Matriarchy.

Patriarchy = division of labor, to invest males in reproduction and give them a meaningful role - head of house.

Matriarchy = women don't need men, men don't have anything to aspire to, and eventually you get primitive 'thug-life' society.

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Pyrtolin
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You are offering a false dichotomy, especially by putting you a specially crafted definition on each of the terms that tries to force a choice that matches your biases. Again- any color, as long as it's black.

Matriarchy and Patriarchy are essentially equivalent and both problematic because they assign power by sex. The simple alternative is to not use sex to assign social power and instead work toward an egalitarian system.

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Daruma28
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No Pyrtolin, I'm pointing out observations on the way human beings have organized societies throughout history.

Either the male is invested in his role as provider for his family, or he is not. That really IS the only real distinction between the two.

It's really not about "power." That's just the cultural marxist power-play; the personal is political.

The feminist movement painted Patriarchy as a system in which Men had all the power, and women were oppressed by their gender roles.

They got society to buy into this notion that Patriarchy was "oppressive." Great. Now most women have to work along with the men, while daycare workers and public school teachers raise the kids.

We are ALL human resources now.

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Chael
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No worries, Daruma.

Personally, I think men are great. [Smile] My objection to your premesis is not 'farthers are unimportant' (my father was sure important in my life while I had him), but really more along the lines of Pyrtolin's original statement. I'd like to see more general recognition that people /are/ individuals, and that the other gender isn't some weird creature from another planet, terribly-named books nonwithstanding. Yes, viva la diference, but let's not forget the similarities, eh?

This thing about the biological clock, for example. Sure.. some women have them. So do some men. I've seen both, and I've seen people of both genders be completely uninterested in children. The implication of 'oh, women have a biological clock which just ticks!' is 'if you don't have a biological clock, you're a broken woman.' No, I'm not saying /you're/ saying that (not trying to put words in your mouth), but it sure has been said before, and yes, in my opinion it's as bad as 'oh, there's no point to having children; if you want to be enlightened, you should only focus on your career.'

You say that status is very important to women. I say that your definition of status is too narrow. Sure, I want to be proud of my husband. But that doesn't mean 'money' to me, and it doesn't mean education, either. It means intellect, heart, ability, and a willingness to shoulder his part of our load. I'm proud of my husband because he's /awesome/, and that's the status which matters to me. He's never been to college. I have my masters. It means diddlysquat.

And yes, maybe I'm the exception that proves the rule--but I know too many people with values like mine to think that the rule you're stating exists is actually objectively true.

Rather, I think: people are different. Some people value some things, some value other things, and at the end of the day, what matters is that we live our lives to the best of our ability, defined not by what other people think we should be doing in order to be Enlightened or Good, but by what we think our purpose in life is. If you're not running around being a serial killer, to be honest, I'm not sure I care. [Wink]

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Daruma28
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This thing about the biological clock, for example. Sure.. some women have them. So do some men. I've seen both, and I've seen people of both genders be completely uninterested in children. The implication of 'oh, women have a biological clock which just ticks!' is 'if you don't have a biological clock, you're a broken woman.' No, I'm not saying /you're/ saying that (not trying to put words in your mouth), but it sure has been said before, and yes, in my opinion it's as bad as 'oh, there's no point to having children; if you want to be enlightened, you should only focus on your career.'

The difference is, Chael, men can attend school, than work on establishing a career. By the time he is in his mid 30's, he can still be at 100% fertility capacity (provided he is in good health and has a good diet).

Women's fertility, even the healthiest women, starts to decline in her late 20's. That is simply biological fact.

Our current cultural zeitgeist in essence pushes women to spend their most fertile years in school and working away at a career...which is in essence what is meant here by "population control."

You say that status is very important to women. I say that your definition of status is too narrow. Sure, I want to be proud of my husband. But that doesn't mean 'money' to me, and it doesn't mean education, either. It means intellect, heart, ability, and a willingness to shoulder his part of our load. I'm proud of my husband because he's /awesome/, and that's the status which matters to me. He's never been to college. I have my masters. It means diddlysquat.

Believe me, I understand what you're saying.

He's never been to college...but would I be totally off base to guess that he is a hard working, successful provider, college degree not withstanding? Furthermore, did you attain your master's degree before or after you married him (i.e. one reason you got to pursue that level of education is because you had his provider support?)

Put it another way - If a woman stays home while a man works full time, to most people (hardcore feminists excepted), this is at least acceptable (although our mass media culture IS awash in propaganda that downgrades, denigrates or makes women feel "unfulfilled" in being just a housewife).

If a man is unemployed and relying on a woman to support him, he's generally considered a "loser."

Most women wouldn't even date a broke, unemployed man with no means to support himself.

That's what "hypergamy" means.

And it's not solely about "money." It's about respect - status amongst her social circle.

No woman wants to marry (or stay married) to a man she cannot respect in some form or another.

The current social trend in which plenty of men are no longer attending college, and who are now unemployed...while plenty of women are getting educations and dominating the workforce means it is far less likely that women are going to find acceptable mates amongst lesser educated, unemployed men.

Put it another way - very rich, succesful women, generally find even richer and more successful men to marry. It's not a "money" thing for women who are already rich - it's a 'status' thing.

The more educated and career successful a woman is, the smaller her acceptable mating pool becomes.

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Chael
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quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:
The difference is, Chael, men can attend school, than work on establishing a career. By the time he is in his mid 30's, he can still be at 100% fertility capacity (provided he is in good health and has a good diet).

So your problem is limited choice (or a lack of clearly-defined risks)?

I remember you did say that earlier, but you also implied some things about what the preferred choice would be. It's the latter I was specifically addressing. I have no qualms with pointing out the former. People should understand the choices they make.

quote:

He's never been to college...but would I be totally off base to guess that he is a hard working, successful provider, college degree not withstanding?

Not at all off base. He's a hard-working, successful human being, and we're a good intellectual match. The reason I mentioned college is because you were decrying the levels of college enrollment of women and men. I don't think it matters. (Even if it /did/ matter, the answer is for more men to go to college if college is actually worth it, not for less women to go. [Wink] )

quote:

Furthermore, did you attain your master's degree before or after you married him (i.e. one reason you got to pursue that level of education is because you had his provider support?)

We married when I was in my last semester of college (boy was that a busy semester). We knew each other for thirteen or fourteen years prior. I worked and supported myself through it.

Here's the thing, re. the rest of your post...my husband was broke for several of the years I knew him (and yes, we were together for those years--not married because we lived in different states, heh), but he was /never/ a 'loser', and that's what I mean about your definition of 'status' being drawn too narrowly. I don't want to go into this too much more, as I don't feel right in plastering private details all over the web [Wink] , but I really can't emphasize this point enough.

No, I wouldn't marry anyone I couldn't respect. But my respect is not given to anyone /because/ they make more money or wield more social power than I do. I don't think I'm alone in this. Giving a name ('hypergamy') to a perceived trend doesn't make it right.

[ October 01, 2010, 01:49 AM: Message edited by: Chael ]

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philnotfil
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quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:

The current social trend in which plenty of men are no longer attending college, and who are now unemployed...while plenty of women are getting educations and dominating the workforce means it is far less likely that women are going to find acceptable mates amongst lesser educated, unemployed men.

Put it another way - very rich, succesful women, generally find even richer and more successful men to marry. It's not a "money" thing for women who are already rich - it's a 'status' thing.

The more educated and career successful a woman is, the smaller her acceptable mating pool becomes. [/QB]

Doesn't this apply to the men who don't attend college as well? Doesn't their pool of mates willing to accept them shrink as more women go to college?
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Daruma28
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Here's the thing, re. the rest of your post...my husband was broke for several of the years I knew him (and yes, we were together for those years--not married because we lived in different states, heh), but he was /never/ a 'loser', and that's what I mean about your definition of 'status' being drawn too narrowly.

Nah, we're actually agreeing here, just disagreeing on semantics.

You're husband was never a "loser." i.e. - you knew he'd eventual "not be broke." You saw his potential to become what he is now, and by your writing, it certainly looks like it worked out for you. Hence, you "married up."

Look, as I tried to point out, it's not "the money" that I'm using as a status. I'm not simply saying all women are gold diggers looking for a rich man (although there are plenty of those for sure).

It's about status - of which the ability to earn money, education, career, demeanor, charisma, all play a role in forming a man's desirable traits.

Women desire to mate with superior genes to pass on to her offspring. Different cultures have different ways of ascertaining status. In ours, education, intelligence, personal charm, and yes, financial success, are all status markers.

It shouldn't be controversial or crazy to note that women are attracted to higher status men as potential mates. In other words, a man who is a proven success, will most likely have the genetic material to create successful children. In some ways, hypergamy is not really "gold digging" - to be a little crass here - it's to collect the highest value sperm possible that she can attract with her beauty - to make her children.

And the current reality of women pursuing all of the status markers that used to define higher status males (education, career success, political power, fame etc.), means a lot more higher status women with a lot less higher status mates who are available. That's because men don't value the same things in our mate selection.

We value fertility. We value beauty - because it marks health, and genetic superiority.

This is why you can always find the older, established man (not even necessarily "rich" just established and successful) with a younger, more attractive - i.e. fertile - couple is rather commonplace...

...but exceptions like Demi Moore marrying an Ashton Kutcher is a tabloid freakshow.

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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by philnotfil:
quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:

The current social trend in which plenty of men are no longer attending college, and who are now unemployed...while plenty of women are getting educations and dominating the workforce means it is far less likely that women are going to find acceptable mates amongst lesser educated, unemployed men.

Put it another way - very rich, succesful women, generally find even richer and more successful men to marry. It's not a "money" thing for women who are already rich - it's a 'status' thing.

The more educated and career successful a woman is, the smaller her acceptable mating pool becomes.

Doesn't this apply to the men who don't attend college as well? Doesn't their pool of mates willing to accept them shrink as more women go to college? [/QB]
You just described the opposite side of the same coin!

When it comes to mating, Men present themselves as an option for her to consider, and the Women chooses.

Think of a nerdy fast food worker guy still living at home with his parents, trying to hit on a beautiful model who had a career and her own house while she's ordering fries from him.

Now reverse that role...think of a moderately successful, nicely dressed guy with a pleasant demeanor...hitting on a young, pretty fast food woman taking his order (note that you cannot tell his wealth level simply by his appearance.)

Who's more likely to get the date?

That is "hypergamy."

Another example - I don't know about you, but I remember in high school that a large number of 15 - 17 girls had 18-20 year old boyfriends.

I don't think I met a single guy in high school who had a 3 - 4 year older girlfriend.

People blithely say that girls "mature" faster than boys.

I say that's really just trying to explain women's mating choices due to their hypergamous instincts.

Women GENERALLY seek older, wiser, more experienced and "mature" men.

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Chael
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quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:
Nah, we're actually agreeing here, just disagreeing on semantics.

I hate to disagree with you when you're agreeing with me, but:

quote:

You're husband was never a "loser." i.e. - you knew he'd eventual "not be broke."

What I was actually saying was that my definition of 'loser' isn't 'broke'. [Wink] I was disagreeing with your previously-stated status markers.

In fact, I'm disagreeing with your application of status markers as well. For me, it wasn't 'what kind of kids would we have together?' It was 'would I love spending the next fifty years with this man?'

I didn't marry up. I didn't marry down. I married a partner.

I get that you're not trying to paint either gender badly with your concepts, but I do think this is one situation in which you can't see the forest without seeing the trees.

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Daruma28
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Nah, I disagree. It IS semantics.

You said:

'would I love spending the next fifty years with this man?'

Why? There are obviously traits and characteristics about him for which you "look up to" in him. That is really all I mean.


'what kind of kids would we have together

Consciously - no. Subconsciously...instinctively, yes.

Of course.

The mating instinct is one of the strongest instincts we possess that drive our behavior, whether we consciously realize it or not.

Sexual attraction IS based on desirability to have the person's traits you're attracted to for your offspring. Your conscious mind may not have thought it...but your initial attraction was based on your genes recognizing his genes as desirable.

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Chael
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What do you mean by 'look up to'?

(I'm one of those people who believes semantics are important. They're the difference between saying one thing and saying another.)
-------
Would it change your opinion at all if I noted that my initial attraction was transferred solely through a computer screen, without images of any kind?

My personal experiences have really lead me to doubt the evolutionary psych stuff.

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Daruma28
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Would it change your opinion at all if I noted that my initial attraction was transferred solely through a computer screen, without images of any kind?

Absolutely not. His ability to engage you in anonymous computer screen conversation that increased your interest in him sight unseen is certainly one means of displaying his mental acuity and social status to you.

This whole "looking up" thing is loaded with a raft of preconceived notions that lead people to reject it.

Many women hear "marry up" and think that means they are "lesser value" because that means they if he's up, than she must be "down." THAT is missing the forest for the trees.

Think of 'hypergamy' as more of female admiration of male traits.

Also note that statistics on "no-fault" divorce.

70+% of all divorces are initiated by women. (IF the couple is college educated, it's 90% that she's the one who filed.)

The most common reason cited is "fallen out of love" or "I just don't have feelings for him anymore," or "I love him, but not in THAT way anymore."

A woman who divorces a man simply for those reasons? She most certainly does look "down" on him, no?

That's a man that has run afoul of her hypergamous instincts.

[ October 01, 2010, 03:09 AM: Message edited by: Daruma28 ]

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Chael
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So, what /do/ you mean by 'looking up'?

I promise not to immediately label you as a misogynist idiot. I'm willing to set aside preconceived notions and listen to what you're saying--otherwise I wouldn't have asked in the first place (because yes, that phrase sure does sound a wee bit condescending). I just want to know what you're /saying/. [Smile]

Edited to add: I /am/ pleased to see 'mental acuity' on your list of potentially-desirable traits. [Wink]

[ October 01, 2010, 03:13 AM: Message edited by: Chael ]

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Daruma28
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Let's phrase it a different way:

A woman assesses a man, and if he has traits that she "looks up to" she's determined that he's worthy to donate his genetic material to make her kids. Now who's in the superior position? [Wink]

Semantics.

What is "respect" but "looking up to" another for one reason or another?

You can also call it "respect."

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Chael
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Well, see, I don't see mating as an adversarial situation, where one party will be in a superior or inferior role when compared with the other. At least, not when it's done right. [Wink] (Your mileage, of course, may vary.) That's why this verbiage is slightly confusing to me.

If all you're saying is that I admire my husband's good qualities, well then, sure. Can't argue there. [Smile] Would argue that I don't admire them for their potential procreative benefits specifically, even if it can be argued that good qualities often have procreative benefits, either for genetic reasons or for childrearing reasons. (And I do take exception when people start arguing 'oh, but you can't help it; it's in your lizard brain!') But that's a pretty self-evident statement, I would hope! 'People try not to marry people they have no respect for, news at eleven,' right?

I do hope you'd agree that men as individuals also have the ability to desire to marry people they have respect for. No?

When you decided you wanted to marry your wife, why did you do it?

(Going to bed, by the by; I will see your response tomorrow.)

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Gaoics79
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quote:
You say that status is very important to women. I say that your definition of status is too narrow. Sure, I want to be proud of my husband. But that doesn't mean 'money' to me, and it doesn't mean education, either. It means intellect, heart, ability, and a willingness to shoulder his part of our load. I'm proud of my husband because he's /awesome/, and that's the status which matters to me. He's never been to college. I have my masters. It means diddlysquat.
When I was single I always used to think the way you do (from the male flipside). I used to pride myself on saying that unlike alot of insecure guys, I didn't care if I dated or eventually married a woman with more money than me. Growing up with sisters who were so smart and successful made me think that I had an ego of steel.

Even then though, I always liked dating women who were not quite as successful as me, despite my best intentions to the contrary. There's a subtle difference between dating a girl who says "wow, you're a lawyer!" versus one who says (implicitly) "of course you are, I wouldn't date any less". It's nice to be a great catch for someone instead of just being the bare minimum their education and wealth demands. Ever tried buying a gift for someone who has everything? That's how I'd feel sometimes when I'd date women as successful or more successful as me. Like I had nothing tangible to offer. You can say that it's superficial of me, but it's the truth I think from at least this male's point of view.

I don't want to dominate my wife. Feminists get that part wrong. But I want to feel useful to her and to our future kids. I think I need to be needed, with "need" being defined as providing something that she cannot provide for herself. If she didn't need me to work for her and the kids, or more to the point, if my work were not significant enough to really raise our standard of living because it was completely eclipsed by her work, well I'd kind of feel more or less useless. I can understand why men who divorce often commit suicide. I think many men really are fulfilled most when they are providers. I think women underestimate that fact. They think that men want equals. And in some ways they're right - we do want equals in terms of a woman's brains, her ability to carry on a conversation, her wit. No one wants to marry a simpleton. But brains and other internal characteristics are not the same as status , and that's where men and women I think part ways.

[ October 01, 2010, 07:09 AM: Message edited by: jasonr ]

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KidTokyo
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A two-part question for you, Daruma.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but a fundamental premise you seem to be working from is that the way in which societies organized themselves throughout history in terms of gender, i.e., patriarchy, is a "natural condition" whereas the modern equality which you term a proto-matriarchy is an "unnatural condition" created by clandestine elites.

Part 1 - Why is the authority wielded by those in power now to create this condition any less "natural" than the authority wielded by those who enforced the patriarchal system (as it was indeed enforced rigorously as a matter of law and custom) in the past? If this question creates a false dichotomy or unfairly frames your position, let me know and I'll approach the problem differently.

Part 2 - For the sake of argument, let's say I agree with you (and I largely do) that Patriarchy was the dominant and most successful familial and social structure for most of recorded history - changing only very recently. Given this, what do you make of the fact that women's suffrage and feminism are very closely correlated with industrialization and modernity? Countries which industrialize also "feminize" - without exception, as far as I can tell. In other words, women seek - for whatever reason - opportunities that become available to them when they are no longer limited to a certain role by the medical risks of childbirth and the rigors of agrarian life. Do you then consider this a product of industrialization, or is it solely the result of power interests and oligarchs which have historically funded industrialization?

I'll add something to this - my own perspective. I do not see Patriarchy as "traditional" because I do not view civilization as being very old. I sort of take the Carl Sagan long view. Human beings have been here in our present, evolved form for about 250,000 years. And yet the very glimmerings of anything beyond hunter-gather society only begins about 10,000 years ago. Therefore, we are a biologically very young species, and yet even in that geologically brief period, "civilization" by its most generous definition only occupies the last 4% of our biological history. The other 96% was running around and stabbing things.

Industrial society is only, most generously, 200 years old, or about .01% of our biological history. So for 99.9% of our history, we did not have anything but the most rudimentary means of growing food and studying the world.

The past 100 years, in particular, has been explosive. We are, in my view, a species in a period of rapid social transition.

It happens sometimes. An organism can continue unchanged for millions of years, and then suddenly change in a period of less than a thousand. It is no doubt unsettling and difficult for any creature that undergoes it - but it's part of life.

I think we are in a period of transition that will continue for at least another several centuries, maybe more, before we hit another plateau. I think we've been in this transitional period for a few thousand years - which is why people have feared the future since the beginning of recorded culture - and that it is now accelerating.

What we are going through now is frightening, but perfectly natural. I believe that a permanent consequence of this change will be a more feminine culture - provided we don't revert to agrarian life, where the physical limitations of human bodies become a much more crucial consideration in how society is organized than it is in technological societies (as a purely practical matter).

This is the lens through which I view the world. It colors everything for me. Just wanted to let you in on that, so you know where I'm coming from.

[ October 01, 2010, 07:06 AM: Message edited by: KidTokyo ]

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Carlotta
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Daruma,
the total insanity are the parts where education of women is seen as a bad thing, and where the right of women to make decisions regarding reproduction is seen as "denying" something to men (implying that my reproductive capacity is something men have a right to.) This is insane to ME, and I'm strongly against abortion, got married at 21 and had my first baby 9 months later, am a stay at home mom and pregnant with our fourth!

The thing is, when you say things in your own words like when you were talking to Chael, I agree with much of what you say. But when you quote things like that long passage, honestly, I'd prefer feminism to that if it were my only two choices, and that's saying something.

[ October 01, 2010, 10:05 AM: Message edited by: Carlotta ]

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