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February 10, 2014

Dr. Freud, Your Slip is Showing...

Nothing does reason more right, than the coolness of those that offer it: For Truth often suffers more by the heat of its defenders, than from the arguments of its opposers.

- William Penn

Juxtapose:

Feminism is not an idea or a collection of ideas but a collection of appetites wriggling queasily together like a bag of snakes.

Of all the unlikely events in a constantly surprising world, we never thought we'd find ourselves complimenting Sandra Fluke for anything. But it's hard not to admire her ability to provoke ostensibly rational and intelligent men into saying unbelievably stupid things.

We can only repeat what we said when Ms. Fluke managed to provoke Rush Limbaugh into suggesting that using birth control pills makes one a slut and a prostitute. Oh, and that Ms. Fluke should post sex tapes online so he can watch them:

During any debate, both sides try to frame the issue on their own terms. The right wanted to frame this debate around religious liberty and limited government. The left desperately wanted to talk about evil, sex hating conservatives and their dubious War on Women. They wanted to talk about the conspiracy to snatch our birth control and force women to bake cupcakes in pale pink Easy Bake ovens while dressed in stiletto heels and frilly aprons.

And while I don't for one moment buy into that framing, I have to admit that for the very first time in my adult life, this 3 decade conservative-voting woman saw what the left sees when they look at Republicans. I don't buy their framing because I refuse to concede that Rush or some conservative bloggers have the right to speak for all Republicans or all conservatives. They don't, and we shouldn't encourage that notion.

Here's a hint: when your rhetoric alienates and offends loyal voting conservatives, you're doing the persuasion thing wrong.

Posted by Cassandra at February 10, 2014 07:27 AM

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Comments

Yeah, I generally agree with Williamson - or at least find his points interesting, helpful, and often amusing. (I read his piece up today on pornography and learned three new words, none of which have anything to do with sex. :+) When it comes to women/feminism, though, I often find him incomprehensible. He seems to have no grasp of the issues behind the impact of feminism in the last 60s and early 70s. That's not uncommon but it is always surprises me and is especially surprising on the part of someone who - as far as I can tell - leans libertarian.

Posted by: Elise at February 10, 2014 09:55 AM

When it comes to women/feminism, though, I often find him incomprehensible.

That problem is widespread :p

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 10:46 AM

He seems to have no grasp of the issues behind the impact of feminism in the last 60s and early 70s.

In part this is because the loudest voices in feminism are not the most valuable ones. Indeed, if you are learning about feminism by engaging political standard-bearers like Hillary Clinton, Wendy Davis, Elizabeth Warren, and Sandra Fluke, his analysis sounds a lot more accurate. The specter of Bill Clinton's treatment by feminists in the 1990s still looms large over the political field.

Even some of the philosophical standard-bearers are most famous for some intemperate remarks about men. It's not surprising to me that men usually stop reading at those first encounters -- indeed, it's the reverse of the problem Cassandra is pointing to here.

Posted by: Grim at February 10, 2014 11:06 AM

In part this is because the loudest voices in feminism are not the most valuable ones.

The same could easily be said about conservatism, or the GOP, or the Tea Party, or [fill in the blank]. That this sort of thing happens doesn't make it valid to dismiss or inaccurately mischaracterize an entire political or ideological movement as being represented ONLY by its most shrill/unreasonable voices. I understand the basic human impulse, but I expect more from someone who writes about politics for a living.

Republicans are constantly complaining about this sort of thing from the Left. And then we do the exact same thing.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 11:18 AM

I've noticed, however, that those succeed most who do these things. I don't know what your blog stats are like, but at the Hall we get maybe 400 visitors a day. I've been writing now for 11 years. If people wanted to hear what I have to say, they'd have found me in greater numbers.

It's somewhat like the Weak Anthropic Principle: any universe that could be understood, in principle, has to have room for some form of sentient life. Anyone who "writes about politics for a living" has to appeal to the culture broadly enough to get read by a wide enough audience to support an advertising base.

You could read people who write about philosophy for a living instead. Some of it is better. Certainly it is more thoughtful and careful to engage the arguments.

Posted by: Grim at February 10, 2014 11:40 AM

You're right - it's not difficult to figure out what generates traffic on the Internet.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 12:06 PM

I WANT women of inconsolable angst, unrequited desires, and who are glib and garrulous with female complaints, to shut up.

Equal say for equal fray.

“When people accept futility and the absurd as normal, the culture is decadent. The term is not a slur; it is a technical label. A decadent culture offers opportunities chiefly to the satirist.”
- Jacques Barzun

How does one satirize the satirical when it has become the norm. There are limits to satire as there are limits to most everything in life. When one side, in this case the ‘feminist’ side, blows down the walls and gates of reason and rationality, when they are unsusceptible of reasoned protest they become targets of unreasoned response. This is the way of human rejoinder. This is what comes of fostering tolerance. This is the result of ‘a bridge too far’. This is what bringing a gun to a gun fight ends up as.

The civil response in an uncivil war is asking too much. The defense of the culture from decadence should be cut as much slack as has been cut to the demolishers. What is it ‘they’ say - it’s only fair.

Posted by: George Pal at February 10, 2014 01:03 PM

I WANT women of inconsolable angst, unrequited desires, and who are glib and garrulous with female complaints, to shut up.

Well, I suppose if one wishes to characterize any and all women who consider themselves feminists of any kind (Sarah Palin, Christina Hoff-Summers, Cathy Young, Camille Paglia, Wendy McElroy, our own Tex99 and Elise: all of whom have called themselves equity feminists) as a roiling bag of snakes who should shut up, you can have that kind of country.

Or maybe you'd like to tell women like Sarah Palin and Christina Hoff-Summers how they don't really understand feminism, and therefore you know more about what they believe and stand for than they do?

You can defend this kind of thing all you want, George. It's a free country. But you will be alienating reasonable women too. Maybe that's OK with you. Maybe you haven't looked at the numbers carefully and consequently don't understand that conservatives need women's votes too.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 01:22 PM

Cass,

Re: “I suppose if one wishes to characterize any and all women who consider themselves feminists of any kind...”

My “feminists” reside in scare quotes because they are scary – for their destructiveness.

Re: “they don't really understand feminism...”

I don’t purport to know what they – Ms. Palin et al. - understand of feminism. I will admit, though that I may not understand it, or its extra fine nuances. Here is what I make of it:

The proposition that feminism is nothing more than the proposal that women should be equal to men was made moot by the Married Women’s Property Act of 1882 and the Nineteenth Amendment of 1915. For one hundred years women have been equal, under the law, to men. To continue the argument according to that notion – equality under the law - is, I believe, to propose a pretense for the defense of angst. Women, in their equality it seems, find themselves, still, as being helpless victims of male wickedness, i.e., male nature, i.e., male dominance/patriarchy. To be equal is of no comfort if one is personally discomfited by the equality. The law and its laborers are now called upon not to be chivalrous to the female but champions of female discomfiture. There are more ways, it seems, to distress an equal woman’s feelings than you can shake a dick at* - emanations of harassment/hostility being what they are purported to be but aren’t.

Either of the laws alluded to above might as well have been called the I Never Promised You A Rose Garden Act/Amendment. It might have raised parity and lowered expectations of privilege – an altogether better state than the present state of affairs.

If you would inform me of what feminism in its nonpassive-aggressive iteration is I would appreciate it – and I’m not being ironic or a wiseass, I honest-to-god want to know.

*Please, I beg, don’t be offended. The phrase is meant as a rejoinder to the “feminists” with female complaints of the male sex. I can’t always contain my wiseassery – after all I’m just a man.

Posted by: George Pal at February 10, 2014 02:39 PM

Christina Hoff Summers has just written an entire book on that subject. An excerpt from an article she wrote about this back in July (click my name for link):

How would the women's movement change if freedom feminism were its guiding philosophy?

First, gender gaps in wages, political leadership, and the professions would not automatically be taken as proof of discrimination. Freedom feminists allow that there could be innocent explanations for disparities. Instead, its focus would be on genuine injustice.

Second, the women's lobby would muster the courage to address a root cause of poverty in America: missing fathers. Freedom feminists may well join their more progressive sisters in supporting initiatives to assist poverty-stricken single mothers; but the primary focus would be on combatting male-averse educational and social policies that have helped create a dysfunctional culture of fatherlessness.

Third, the geographic focus would shift from the United States to the developing world. Throughout Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, there are modern-day Elizabeth Cady Stantons and Frances Willards fighting valiantly to improve the lives of women. They are asking for our help. History suggests that a coalition of conservative and progressive women could be powerful force for change. In welcoming women from across the ideological spectrum, freedom feminism would build that formidable coalition.

Here's a definition of equity feminism for you from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

Equity feminism is a form of classical-liberal or libertarian feminism that holds that feminism's political role is simply to ensure that everyone's, including women's, right against coercive interference is respected (Sommers 1994, 22). Wendy McElroy, an equity feminist writes: “I've always maintained that the only reason I call myself a feminist is because of [the] gov[ernment]. By which I mean, if the government (or an anarchist defense assoc[iation]) acknowledged the full equal rights of women without paternalistic protection or oppression, I would stop writing about women's issues” (McElroy 1998c).

Feminism's political role involves assuring that women's right against coercive interference by private individuals is recognized and protected by the state (for example women's right against groping on the street or rape within marriage (McElroy 1991a)), and that women's right against coercive interference by the state itself is respected. The latter means feminists should object to laws that restrict women's liberty in particular (for example laws that limit women's employment options (Taylor 1992, 228)), and laws that protect women in particular (for example laws granting preferential treatment to women (Paul 1989)). Equity feminists suggest that this has been largely accomplished in countries like the United States. Joan Kennedy Taylor explains: feminism's “goal of equal political liberty for women has been pretty much reached in the United States” (Taylor 2001; see also Sommers 1994, 274).

You can read item 2.2 for more details. Link:

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/feminism-liberal/

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 02:54 PM

Let me throw out one more point.

I have constantly and repeatedly criticized radical feminism on this site. I do not consider myself a feminist, nor have I ever done so. But there is no political or ideological movement I am aware of that displays total uniformity of thought. Not one.

This should not be news to anyone who is paying attention. It may make conservative pundits feel smart to dishonestly characterize their opponents and grossly oversimplify their opponents' positions, but when they do so they're not being honest with their readers. Democrats don't all agree, MRA don't all agree, feminists don't all agree, conservatives don't all agree, and libertarians don't all agree.

This is basic, basic stuff. I can understand wanting a less complex world where every debate can be reduced to bumper-sticker level, straw man arguments that can simply be dismissed out of hand with no real effort or thought. But I don't respect people who do that sort of thing.

Society is full of groups with different and competing interests. A very good example of a feminist issue I happen to support is the radical notion that parents are responsible for supporting their children, and that responsibility does NOT terminate upon divorce.

One can argue the relative merits and efficacy of various child support schemes, but I would really like to believe that most conservatives don't seriously think a father should be able to "divorce" his own children. That's a so-called "women's issue". It's also a children's issue, and a family issue and a societal issue that affects us all.

I see absolutely nothing wrong with men or women working as groups to address issues that uniquely affect either sex. When they do so unfairly or at the expense of the rest of society, I criticize them. Oddly, I have yet to have had to resort to the "bag of snakes" school of rhetoric, as ordinary logic and facts seem to make the point just fine.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 03:24 PM

Re: Christina Hoff Summers and freedom feminists. I don’t get it – freedom feminist? I take it to be an exercise in differentiation without distinguishing features. How can genuine injustice possibly be of concern only of the distaff side? Freedom feminists and their progressive sisters? Sounds like a cat fight in the making – will they be scantily clad and in jello? – I may watch.

Re: ”A very good example of a feminist issue I happen to support is the radical notion that parents are responsible for supporting their children, and that responsibility does NOT terminate upon divorce.”

That is not a feminist issue. As you have framed it, it is a social issue. As a social issue it would be of concern to as many men as women – all things being equal or nearly so as possible. And we would find ourselves agreeing, utterly.

I take it as a feminist issue when it is couched in ‘extra equal’ appeasement of women’s desires. If the majority of divorce proceedings are initiated by women, I wonder why. If the discrepancy in divorce filings by women over men approaches a terrifying ratio, I wonder why. If men feel their relationship with their children may be terminated at any moment by divorce courts, family courts, I wonder why? If men think their responsibility to their children should consist of more than timely check in the mail, I think, why, yes of course.

So we find ourselves discussing how best to treat the sequela without diagnosing the underlying disease. If you would have men stand up then stop the women from running off. Divorce has been made too easy. It has been made so for the sake of women. What is done solely for the sake of women constitutes feminism. So I hate feminism.

Posted by: George Pal at February 10, 2014 05:24 PM

Some day when you're asking all those "why" questions, you might want to ask why, if feminism, easy divorce, and/or custody laws are causing more women than men to ask for divorces, the majority of divorce proceedings have been initiated by women - in the same proportions - for well over 100 years?

Long before alimony and women's lib, long before no fault divorce, back when custody almost always went to the father by default, about 2/3 of divorce filings were initiated by women. Inconvenient for your bizarre belief that we can turn the clock back by "stopping the women from running off".

We've discussed all this many times before, but those facts don't seem to make a dent in your pre-existing opinion that somehow, feminists are to blame for everything under the sun. I've never even once heard you complain about the cultural influence of the thousands of men who have gotten rich from degrading and destroying respect for marriage.

I write about both. You only rail against half the equation: the female half. When women do things you don't like, feminism is to blame. When men do bad things (if they are ever actually recognized to have done bad things, as opposed to engaging in justifiable retaliation), feminism is to blame. The common thread here is that men are never to blame for anything, and if by some weird happenstance someone tries to hold them accountable, feminism is the ultimate get-out-of-jail free card.

The underlying disease is people refusing to take responsibility and defining acceptable behavior down to the lowest common denominator. Your cure is more of the same.


Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 06:16 PM

Thanks for the link to Summers' essay - and the name of her book. She expresses quite well the distinction I think of as Institutional Feminism versus Real Feminism.

I really like this line from the Stanford Encyclopedia discussion of Equity Feminism:

Some equity feminists see a nonpolitical role for feminism, helping women to benefit from their freedom by developing beneficial character traits or strategies for success, or navigating among their increasing options.

I've tried arguing this on a Left-leaning feminist blog, pointing out that women have largely won in terms of legal equality and what's important is not demanding more and more laws but teaching younger women how to use that equality responsibly and effectively. I felt like I was speaking Klingon. Very odd because feminism as I experienced it back in the early 70s was about women helping women through connections, encouragement, support, information, etc. Now Institutional Feminism seems to be solely about getting the government to do x, y, or z "for women". Institutional Feminism has left behind its "flat" origins and gleefully embraced the very hierarchy, unequal power relationships, and accompanying coercion that it found so objectionable.

And that was a tangential excursion. To return to the main point (I think) it is very easy to pick out a person or statement from "the other side" and push back against that person or statement as if it represents the whole side. It does drive blog traffic - there's not much sweeter than having our own biases validated - but it does nothing to advance understanding or to open a real dialogue with real people. Especially if a blogger wants to shred an opposing position he should show he understands it as it is, not as he has caricatured it. Otherwise people like me, who have previously thought well of his ideas, may find ourselves saying, "You know, if he's such an idiot about this area maybe he doesn't know as much about other areas as I thought he did." :+)

Posted by: Elise at February 10, 2014 06:41 PM

Cass,

Let’s get my bizarre beliefs straight - women are running off with the certainty the children, the alimony, the child support, are theirs by default - the ratio may be the same but the number of divorces is staggeringly greater.

As for ”You only rail against half the equation: the female half”
Not so. I have from the outset railed against feminism/feminists.
I stand by my contention that feminism, not women, but feminism, men and women together, has been a bane to society and complicit in, if not all then much of, the demolition of traditional social mores that had once been extant.
I stand by my contention that feminism, not women, but feminism, men and women together, allied itself with the Left, and now the State, for the purpose of destroying social cohesion under the rubric of equality.
I stand by my contention that feminism, not women, but feminism, men and women together, has done more physical and psychic harm to women in three generations than had been done to them at any other time save invasion by barbarians.
If you have an idea of feminism as noble cause then I take it as nostalgia for a time past when it might have been such to a great many, most, apolitical women. But that feminism has been off the reservation for some time now.

Posted by: George Pal at February 10, 2014 07:30 PM

First of all, don't put arguments in my mouth. I never claimed that feminism is a noble cause. Mischaracterizations like that are exactly what I'm complaining about.

And please don't tell me you're seriously claiming that Hefner, Guccione, and Flynt were motivated by feminism. I was right - there's nothing you won't blame on feminism, and you just can't accept that men do some pretty destructive things for their own reasons.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 07:51 PM

...it is very easy to pick out a person or statement from "the other side" and push back against that person or statement as if it represents the whole side. It does drive blog traffic - there's not much sweeter than having our own biases validated - but it does nothing to advance understanding or to open a real dialogue with real people. Especially if a blogger wants to shred an opposing position he should show he understands it as it is, not as he has caricatured it. Otherwise people like me, who have previously thought well of his ideas, may find ourselves saying, "You know, if he's such an idiot about this area maybe he doesn't know as much about other areas as I thought he did." :+)

Thank you for understanding, Elise.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 07:52 PM

Let’s get my bizarre beliefs straight - women are running off with the certainty the children, the alimony, the child support, are theirs by default - the ratio may be the same but the number of divorces is staggeringly greater.

Says who? The number of PEOPLE is staggeringly greater, George. The divorce rate actually went DOWN after no fault. Stop substituting your personal opinions for facts. They're not interchangeable.

You've seen the data because I've brought it to your attention several times now. You can continue to ignore the evidence, but that won't make it go away.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 08:38 PM

Another completely unsubstantiated opinion:

women are running off with the certainty the children, the alimony, the child support, are theirs by default

Wrong.

1. Few women get alimony.
2. Child support laws in the vast majority of states are gender neutral.
3. Child custody laws in the vast majority of states are gender neutral.

See George? Men are completely equal under the law! Nothing remains to be done, because the laws are already fair!

And yes, that was sarcastic.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 08:41 PM

I really like this line from the Stanford Encyclopedia discussion of Equity Feminism:

Some equity feminists see a nonpolitical role for feminism, helping women to benefit from their freedom by developing beneficial character traits or strategies for success, or navigating among their increasing options.

I've tried arguing this on a Left-leaning feminist blog, pointing out that women have largely won in terms of legal equality and what's important is not demanding more and more laws but teaching younger women how to use that equality responsibly and effectively. I felt like I was speaking Klingon. Very odd because feminism as I experienced it back in the early 70s was about women helping women through connections, encouragement, support, information, etc. Now Institutional Feminism seems to be solely about getting the government to do x, y, or z "for women". Institutional Feminism has left behind its "flat" origins and gleefully embraced the very hierarchy, unequal power relationships, and accompanying coercion that it found so objectionable.

I suspect that when the prospect of legal remedies was more remote, feminists relied (as I think is proper and right) on informal networking and moral suasion. But as legal remedies - or as I think of them, legal preferences - proliferated, the women's movement turned from self reliance to dependency.

That crowding out effect appears everywhere heavy handed government interference crops up. It displaces creative problem solving and self reliance.

Which is not to say than in some respects, we don't live in a better world today. In other respects, it's a worse one. I have no daughters, but I have two daughters in law I love like daughters. I'm glad they don't have to put up with crap I had to put up with when I was newly married and needed (not wanted) to work. And I don't believe the blatant, open, unashamed prejudice I experienced would have spontaneously come to an end. I deplore some of the side effects of these changes, though. I oppose preferences unreservedly and always have. They're poisonous, toxic, and deeply unfair.

But I really get aggravated when I hear conservatives longing for the "good old days" when bosses saw nothing wrong with telling a female employee working to help feed her family that it was completely right and proper to pay a single man more than a married woman with a child for exactly the same position and hours worked (and when the woman was - by his own admission! - a far better employee) simply because "He's a man and *some day* he *might* have to support a family!"

That the man who said this was (I think) an intelligent and genuinely good man trying to do the right thing shows just how far we've come as a nation.

There's a balance here. I think the pendulum has swung too far in the other direction. But that doesn't mean we'd be better off if it had never moved at all, not the least because not all women marry or have children (but they still need to earn a living). And if we claim to want stable marriages, it makes sense to give couples maximum flexibility in how they order their lives.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 10:40 AM

Well, to me, the need to use the adjectives "freedom" and "equity" in front of Feminism to denote the kind that really does mean "the radical notion that men and women are equal" is part of the problem.

Kind of like how people need to throw "classical" in front of liberal to distance themselves even though *they* are the ones who have the textbook correct definition.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 10:45 AM

Well, not being much of a joiner, it's hard for me to get excited about any movement. I tend to stand apart, but I also see the utility of cooperation with others towards a common goal.

My experience over 10 years of blogging tells me that there are some issues that bother men more than women and vice versa. There are issues that - for reasons of experience, disparate impact, whatever - are more important to men than women (and more important to women than men). Issues involving children are a great example.

It's not that men don't care about these issues. They do. But they generally don't spend a whole lot of time thinking about them. That changes somewhat when they become fathers, but it's my opinion that, on average, men simply don't pay as much attention to issues involving children as women do.

Likewise, my husband pays attention to all sorts of issues that don't really exert much of a pull on me. And they are important issues - they do matter.

So, though I don't consider myself a feminist, I don't think it's a bad thing to have more voices at the table. I see this at work all the time: as our company and business has become more complex, the seats at the table have increased. Mostly, I believe this has resulted in better and more informed decisions that better balance competing interests.

So I broadly support encouraging more women to participate in civic life and encouraging more men to take an active role in family life. I don't at all support quotas or bean counting.

I also like the distinction between equitable processes and laws and equal outcomes. I support the first, and deplore forcing the second.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 10:58 AM

My experience over 10 years of blogging tells me that there are some issues that bother men more than women and vice versa.

Maybe that's what the author really meant by his metaphor. 'Every time I write as a man about certain issues that are especially important to women, it seems like someone has thrown a bag of angry snakes in my lap.'

It struck me as a strange metaphor on the first reading, but reflecting on the kind of heat that gets generated in these discussions, I can kind of see how he might experience it that way.

Posted by: Grim at February 11, 2014 11:29 AM

Don't disagree with any of that. I'm just saying that in any persuasive writing it's impossible to deal with all the various minutia that distinquishes individuals. Speaking in generalities and central tendencies are of necessity even when addressing yourself.

Classical Liberals denote themselves that way to distance themselves from plain Liberals. Ostensibly because they believe that Liberals aren't.

That so many women with highly supportable central tenets feel the need to add a modifier to distance themselves from the common term suggests that, maybe, the same sort of problem is going on.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 11:29 AM

Cass,

The U.S. National Center for Health Statistics no longer collects data on divorces. I suspect embarrassment has something to do with it. When it did, it published a table of marriage and divorce rates from 1867. In 1867 the divorce rate for the nation was 0.3 %. By the time feminism had shown up, let’s call it 1960, the rate had risen to 2.2%. It’s no use nobbling the argument with ‘no fault divorce’ – much of the damage had already been done. The divorce rates in this country are embarrassing, informative, and instructive as to contributing factors for the dissolution of society – feminism among them.

Statistics gleaned from various sources:
Since 1970 marriages have declined 30%.
Since 1970 divorces have increased 40%.
Over 40% of first marriages end within 13 years.
Over 20% of first marriages end within 5 years.
Over 75% of divorced people get remarried.
Second marriages fail 65% of the time.
Premarital cohabitation increased 70% in the 1990′s.
Over 50% of premarital cohabitating couples split up within 5 years.
Over 50% of marriages are preceded by premarital cohabitation.


”In their study titled "Child Custody Policies and Divorce Rates in the US," Kuhn and Guidubaldi* find it reasonable to conclude that women anticipate advantages to being single, rather than remaining married.
When women anticipate a clear gender bias in the courts regarding custody, they expect to be the primary residential parent for the children and recipient of the resulting financial child support, maintaining the marital residence, receiving half of all marital property, and gaining total freedom to establish new social relationships.

*Kuhn, Richard; John Guidubaldi (October 23, 1997). "Child Custody Policies and Divorce Rates in the US". 11th Annual Conference of the Children's Rights Council.

Hugh Hefner's public support of feminist causes - birth control, equality, abortion rights is well known. He bought off many “feminists” - though not Gloria – you go girl. Carrie Pitzulo, author of Bachelors and Bunnies: The Sexual Politics of Playboy asks “Is it possible to reinterpret Hefner as the creator of sex positivism? As a liberator of women from a rigid Madonna-whore dichotomy? An usher of all genders into a modern age of individual freedoms?” The answer, in a no small portion of feminism, is yes. The sleaze of Mr. Hefner knews few bounds. His greatest contribution to decency was admitting he would not want his daughter stapled in the centerfold.

Posted by: George Pal at February 11, 2014 12:13 PM

The U.S. National Center for Health Statistics no longer collects data on divorces.

Why is this important? Other orgs (the Census bureau among them) do collect divorce data. It makes no sense to claim (as you do) that feminism and easy divorce are the causal agents behind the rise in divorce rates and then completely ignore the fact that the divorce rate went DOWN once unilateral divorce (aka, no fault) became widespread. You can't have it both ways, saying "the damage was already done" before the cause you claim is behind that damage was operative :p

As for Hefner, he was complaining that marriage was a trap for men akin to slavery long before feminists showed up. Cherry picking what other people have said after the fact doesn't override the message Hefner and his mag were pushing long before feminism was any kind of force in society: that marriage was bad for men and they should avoid it - that stay at home wives and mothers were leeches and parasites who preyed on men.

And, perhaps most amusingly, that he didn't think that women would ever want to give up the "cushy" job of being parasit... err... stay at home wives and mothers.

Feminism had nothing to do with any of this at the time, post hoc rationalizations notwithstanding. Hef was a sleazebag who didn't like marriage and started a business to run it down.

And it worked. Since we're doing quotes:

The early Playboy sought the eyes and minds of what Fraterrigo calls “the young, affluent, urban bachelor,” and the first issue was pitched by Hefner as “a little diversion from the anxieties of the Atomic Age.” These anxieties were not only about being barbequed by Soviet nukes; for the American male, they included having to marry the first woman you had sex with, living with your parents (thanks to a dire postwar housing shortage), and feeling emasculated by the new nature of American work, no longer artisanal or rugged or self-determining but managerial and inchoate and soul-stranglingly indoor. This was, in fact, the young Hefner’s life, and he loathed it. In 1953, he was a struggling cartoonist with a wife and child; the Chicago Daily News profiled him in a lifestyles piece as a model of suburban bonhomie. A year later, Playboy was launched. Soon enough Hefner was a millionaire bachelor with an estranged daughter, Christie. (They would not reconnect until after she graduated from college, and she would eventually run the Playboy empire.)

In terminating a certain kind of life for himself, Hefner also terminated it for a generation of American men--if not in fact then at least as the ideal. While his current existence--with its carousel of Viagra, twentysomething blonds, and fresh pajama bottoms--seems a rather nightmarish gauntlet for an eighty-year-old to run, Hefner has avoided the fate suffered by so many American public figures: he is utterly free of phoniness. Unfortunately, this has come at the cost of seeming utterly ridiculous, though he does not seem to mind.

More than anything else, Fraterrigo reminds us that those who grew up in a pre-Playboy world had a psychic Grand Canyon separating them from the dwellers of the post-Playboy landscape. In the pre-Playboy world, naked women were the purlieu of pale loners and rain coated perverts. Post-Playboy, naked women were merely adult entertainment, so calm down already. Pre-Playboy, a young woman who undressed for money before a camera was essentially infecting herself with social measles. Post-Playboy, that same young woman could be the embodiment of pillowy American goodness.

You keep asserting (without any evidence) that no fault was instigated "for the benefit of women" or that people whose contemporary writings show ZERO evidence of feminist leanings or sympathies are, somehow, still feminists.

That allows you to blame someone else for their decisions but it's simply not persuasive. The very fact that feminists don't even agree on whether porn is a good thing or not only proves my earlier point about the lack of intellectual conformity among feminists.

Which makes lumping them all into the same category even dumber.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 12:34 PM

The problem with taking 1970 to today is it ignores that there was a peak in the divorce rate in 1978-79 and that it has been falling ever since.

It also ignores that the divorce rate has been steadily increasing since it least 1860.

It's like taking a snapshot of a mountain climber when he was ascendign at 5,000 feet and then another snapshot when he's descending but at 7,500 feet and then declaring that the data says he's climbing.

The interesting thing is that the divorce rate peaked about 20-30 years after the marriage peak prior to WWII. So it looks like we have 1) couples who got married hastily around the war (and who probably shouldn't have in the first place) start splitting about the time they became empty nesters and 2) their married children who just witnessed a lot of their parent's marriages break up thus lessening the social stigma on them. We are now returning back to the long term trend.

Feminism existed during this time, but it is not at all clear that Feminism caused even the temporary deviation from the long term trend.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 12:41 PM

And starting from an arbitrary starting point and ending at today is exactly the kind of thing that Global Warming skeptics tend to point at and laugh precisely because it does ignore the long term trends.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 12:49 PM

Classical Liberals denote themselves that way to distance themselves from plain Liberals. Ostensibly because they believe that Liberals aren't.

That so many women with highly supportable central tenets feel the need to add a modifier to distance themselves from the common term suggests that, maybe, the same sort of problem is going on.

If I understand what you're arguing here, I agree with you. What passes for feminism in the political arena is *not* what I mean by feminism. At the same time, however, I'm unwilling to say, "I am not a feminist." Hence the modifier: real or equity.

I suppose one can argue that a blogger is justified in referring to all feminists pejoratively because some who claim to be feminists espouse policies he dislikes. But, as Cassandra points out, most people object when the same logic is applied to "their side". For example, Williamson claiming that:

Feminism began as a simple grievance

is not any different than people on the Left claiming that the Tea Party started as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Koch brothers or as a racist reaction to the Obama Presidency or any of the other "explanations" that ignore the real concerns that drove the movement's origins.

Similarly, I don't think most people on the Right have any trouble understanding that there are Establishment Republicans, Libertarian Republicans, truly small government Republicans, truly dual-Federalism Republicans, and so on. To look at an Establishment Republican who supports amnesty for illegal aliens and declare that therefore all Republicans just want cheap labor for big businesses is as nonsensical as looking at Sandra Fluke and her ilk and declaring that therefore all feminists want the government to pay for birth control.

Posted by: Elise at February 11, 2014 01:19 PM

It's funny - my husband has pretty much the stereotypical gut reaction to feminists. When I showed him the article, he thought it was overwrought and risible.

That's really what I mean by, "If you alienate people who are already inclined to agree with your main point (feminism as a political movement has pretty much jumped the shark), you're doing persuasion wrong."

If your point is to be seen to be a Brave, Truth Telling Truth to Powerer who IS NOT! Afraid of Those Scary Feminists, well... mission accomplished.

I guess. But people like me (and my husband the Feminist Hater) still look at that sort of thing and roll our eyes big time. It's just not credibility enhancing in any sense of the word.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 01:27 PM

Feminism began as a simple grievance...

Casting not allowing half of the polity to vote because they have different plumbing as a "grievance" isn't (I hope) the way conservatives or libertarians would like to market themselves to the voting public. Or maybe it is?

Yikes.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 01:33 PM

What passes for feminism in the political arena is *not* what I mean by feminism.

This is exactly what I wanted to establish as a baseline, yes.

My next observation is that classical liberals don't tend to feel alienated when people disparage Liberals and their ideas because they know those comments aren't directed at them. (They may think that certain arguments are factually wrong, but that's different than feeling alienated.) That is, after all, *why* they chose to denote themselves separately. The commonly accepted tenets of liberalism are *not* what they mean be the term.

That doesn't seem to hold for feminism. Why?

Is it as simple as classical liberals are a comparatively tiny group and thus feel more distanced from the larger population of liberals?

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 01:53 PM

Similarly, when Boehner disparages Tea Party Republicans, I don't see very many Old School Big Gov't Republicans feeling alienated.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 02:05 PM

That doesn't seem to hold for feminism. Why?

In the case of the linked essay, I would say that starting out by declaring that feminism has nothing to do with one of its core tenets might have something to do with it. Or saying that ideas have nothing to do with feminism (it's all emotion driven).

FWIW, I'm not sure how classical liberals feel when they hear liberalism derided. I suspect that if it were described in such vitriolic terms as the linked essay, they very well might take some offense.

But I also suspect that classical liberals don't attribute their current freedoms to the efforts of regular liberals. Women (and equity feminists like Sarah Palin) absolutely DO attribute their current freedoms to the efforts of "feminists" (the movement). We know this because they have said so repeatedly.

When a man says that feminism - the political movement that worked to bring women the vote, made it possible for married women to own property in their own right, and provided legal remedies for legitimate discrimination - has zero intellectual merit, women are going to hear "Women should never have been allowed to vote, own property, say no to sex if they're married".

That's really not an unreasonable position when you look at the number of bozos in our party yammering on about sex tapes and likening using contraceptives to prostitution (or claiming that we shouldn't worry about pregnancies resulting from rape because women's bodies mysteriously block rapist sperm but not non-rapist sperms). It's even less unreasonable when so many in our party defend these morons vociferously.

I expect idiots in life. I don't expect lots of folks to defend idiocy.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 02:14 PM

I can't answer for what is continually derided as "the GOP establishment/dirty RINOs/traitors", because I don't consider myself an "old school big govt. republican".

I will say that I haven't been at all offended by Boehner's alleged disparagement of the Tea Party. What did he say that was so bad? If I'm wrong, I'm more than willing to be enlightened. I don't pay much attention to party infighting.

For that matter, what has been said about Boehner by the Tea Party? How do they compare? I've had to turn my radio off too many times to count because I was disgusted and repelled by things said about Boehner by various self-described tea partiers.

I think it's a valid point that the entire Tea Party should not be judged by its loudest and nastiest voices (and boy are there a lot of those!). And I have endeavored not to do that here at VC because I know and respect the large portion of my readers who do sympathize with the tea party.

But I am frequently extremely offended and put off by Tea Party rhetoric. I don't appreciate being called a no-good RINO who should be purged from the party. That kind of talk isn't helpful, and I really wish they'd cut it out.

I think you're making a very good point, Yu-Ain: I know you sympathize with the tea party and I have to be honest and admit that the rhetoric I hear and read on a daily basis makes me and most of my friends want to tune out. But I don't tune out, and I don't write essays saying there's no intellectual substance to the movement, or comparing them to bags of writhing snakes because I think that sort of thing is not helpful to anyone. I try to ignore the constant insults and stay open to the parts of the message I think are worthwhile.

I think maybe I'm just weird. Maybe I should be more emotional about all this, but I honestly don't see how that moves the ball down the field.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 02:33 PM

I think maybe I'm just weird. Maybe I should be more emotional about all this, but I honestly don't see how that moves the ball down the field.

I'd say that depends on which ball you want to move down which field. If the ball is blog hits and the field is Internet status then being more emotional probably does an excellent job. Ditto if - as has been the case for much of my writing over the last several months - the ball is expressing my anger over ObamaCare and the field is not screaming at my liberal friends. (I think I'm losing this analogy.) But if the ball is gaining support and the field is what government looks like then enraging potential supporters is an (ahem) Denver Broncos-like strategy.

Posted by: Elise at February 11, 2014 02:39 PM

Well, I'm not saying that Tea Partiers don't, or even shouldn't, feel alienated when Tea Partiers are disparaged by Establishment Repubulicans nor that Establishment Republicans don't , or even shouldn't, feel alienated when Establishment Republicans are disparaged by Tea Partiers.

What I don't see is a lot of people who are neither Establishment Republicans nor Tea Partiers who feel that *they* are being disparaged by the fight between the two.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 02:45 PM

It makes no sense to claim (as you do) that feminism and easy divorce are the causal agents behind the rise in divorce rates and then completely ignore the fact that the divorce rate went DOWN once unilateral divorce (aka, no fault) became widespread.

The problem with taking 1970 to today is it ignores that there was a peak in the divorce rate in 1978-79 and that it has been falling ever since.

Coincidental of both, cohabitation rates begin to rise. Fewer marriages, ipso facto, fewer divorces; cohabitation is every bit as destructive as wholesale divorce.

I have no argument with your take of Hef. He and others like him contributed mightly to what’s wrong with the world. My addendum is that a large part of feminism bought into female sexual liberation just as he was selling male sexual liberation and libertinism.

I still have no idea as to what it is that women self-identifying with feminism or as feminist with some token modifier want. I understand they distance themselves from radical feminism. I understand they are not organizational feminists. I understand they find first, second, third, wave feminism as quixotic socio-sexual aberrations. What I don’t understand is what they want that and why it must fall under the rubric ‘feminism’. Has that word some essential rebelliousness that women require to make known their individuality? Is “I’m an x-feminist” the equivalent of ‘I am woman here me roar’? Knowing well what radical and cuckoo ‘feminism’ has wrought, I ask again, what is moderate, or lacy, or passementerie, feminism? What socio/cultural contributions has it made over the last three generations? What is it it hopes to accomplish? What is it that they haven’t got, and can’t get... yet?

Posted by: George Pal at February 11, 2014 02:47 PM

I'd say that depends on which ball you want to move down which field. If the ball is blog hits and the field is Internet status then being more emotional probably does an excellent job. Ditto if - as has been the case for much of my writing over the last several months - the ball is expressing my anger over ObamaCare and the field is not screaming at my liberal friends. (I think I'm losing this analogy.) But if the ball is gaining support and the field is what government looks like then enraging potential supporters is an (ahem) Denver Broncos-like strategy.

That makes sense.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 02:49 PM

I have no argument with your take of Hef. He and others like him contributed mightly to what’s wrong with the world. My addendum is that a large part of feminism bought into female sexual liberation just as he was selling male sexual liberation and libertinism.

Agreed. Tammy Bruce had some video called feminism 2.0 up at Instapundit. She made some points I agreed with and several I didn't so much.

But one of them was that it was destructive for women to want to act like the worst sort of men. What continues to bother me about all this, though, is the substantial number of conservatives (male and female) who glorify male promiscuity as natural and beautiful and vilify female promiscuity with no seeming awareness that there's any moral component there worth thinking about.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 02:54 PM

What I don't see is a lot of people who are neither Establishment Republicans nor Tea Partiers who feel that *they* are being disparaged by the fight between the two.

Well, I am not one or the other, but I have several times felt disparaged by anti-"establishmentGOP" rhetoric. Why, given that I'm a registered independent, do I react that way?

Two reasons:

1. "If you don't agree with me, you're one of them". I see this argument a lot from Tea Partiers. It's not really true, but if you're going to tell me you see no difference between me and those you're currently insulting, I'm more likely to feel insulted.

I think this is very applicable to the feminism thing. We've made fun of that very argument here several times: "Cass is a rabid, man-hating Feminazi because she failed to denounce X strongly enough in a post about Y and Z!". Or perhaps more entertainingly, "Cass is an alpha bi*** Goddess feminazi because I'm inaccurately claiming she supports something she has repeatedly denounced !!!11!".

In fairness, I think some of the VC readership have interpreted my oblique criticisms of some Tea Party tactics as criticisms of them, personally. I didn't intend that, and it pains me. Had I meant to do that, I would have simply been direct. It's not as though I've never told anyone I thought they were mistaken or wrong (or they've never returned the favor with interest!). But any time you sympathize - at least in part - with a group that's being criticized, you may feel you're being indirectly criticized when they are criticized.

This is obviously more true if you paint indiscriminately with that broad brush and if you're careful to use qualifiers and recognize distinctions.

2. Context. Sadly, there is a lot of disrespectful and contemptuous talk about women on conservative sites. It's the pool we all swim in, so we can't help but swallow some of the water. The same is true of anti-male rhetoric on liberal sites, by the way. They have nothing but contempt for men - men are cause of Every Bad Thing That Ever Happened and women can generally do no wrong.

It's not a thoughtful position.

When you hear certain themes over and over again (women, but not blacks or Jews who vote for Dems en masse, are to blame for big government; women - but not men - are responsible for the decline in sexual morality; women - but not men - are responsible for rising rates of divorce/single parenthood; women - but not men - are to blame for things men do), they become more prominent in your mind than if you rarely hear them. And they become linked to the group you hear repeating them over and over.

If, when you hear these themes, no one objects, you begin to wonder if the thundering silence doesn't signal tacit assent? And then you wonder if you really have as much in common with the people you thought were on "your team" as you once thought you did?

You wonder if you really share the same values?

When I talk to my friends and family who have voted Republican for years, they all echo these themes. They feel disparaged. My Dad feels disparaged. Suddenly, almost 70 years of solid support for conservatism is rendered worthless.

So it's not just gender or sex we're talking about. It's scorched earth rhetoric in general, and it's doing real damage to the willingness of even like-minded people to work together.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 04:06 PM

I think some of that is backlash.

Men used to embrace power but also control. The ideal Man was hard, but never harsh. Proud but not arrogant. As male power was pushed against the push back lost sight of the control aspect.

We saw this a couple weeks ago with the Seahawks defensive back. A complete lack of control, there. In the 60s, both he and the receiver would have been taken aside and beaten by their own teamates to enforce some discipline and respect for the other players.

And yes, this idea of a backlash overcorrection applies just as much for women.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 04:13 PM

Regarding this point:

When you hear certain themes over and over again (women, but not blacks or Jews who vote for Dems en masse, are to blame for big government; women - but not men - are responsible for the decline in sexual morality; women - but not men - are responsible for rising rates of divorce/single parenthood; women - but not men - are to blame for things men do), they become more prominent in your mind than if you rarely hear them. And they become linked to the group you hear repeating them over and over.

FWIW, I link anti-male sentiment with the Left for the same reasons: that's where it's coming from.

I guess I just never thought I'd see conservatives denigrating women in that way, and it breaks my heart. There are good men and bad men; good women and bad women.

I don't understand the mentality that wants to generalize from a few bad apples to the essential nature of the rest of the barrel. And I never will.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 04:13 PM

I think some of that is backlash.

Men used to embrace power but also control. The ideal Man was hard, but never harsh. Proud but not arrogant. As male power was pushed against the push back lost sight of the control aspect.
We saw this a couple weeks ago with the Seahawks defensive back. A complete lack of control, there. In the 60s, both he and the receiver would have been taken aside and beaten by their own teamates to enforce some discipline and respect for the other players.

Yu-Ain, I think you're dead on. I wish I had those stupid "up arrows" - I'd hit the "Like" button a gazillion times.

Except I really hate those things, so I'm just applauding silently.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 04:16 PM

That last was in response to the 02:54 PM comment.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 04:17 PM

Well, I still like it. So there! :)

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 04:21 PM

Well, I would say that you are intentionally being insulted, and as such not a member of a third group. But your point is taken.

That said, I took the second sentence: "Feminism has nothing to do with the proposition that women should be considered whole and complete members of the body politic, though it has enjoyed great success marketing itself that way" was that the author, in fact, had no qualms with the proposition that women are fully equal. And is fully supportive of such. It's just that the author does not believe that proposition to be represented by Feminism.

Compare "Tea Partiers have nothing to do with the proposition that gov't should be kept as small as possible, though it has enjoyed great success marketing itself that way". I wouldn't take that statement as disparaging of advocates of smaller gov't even as I would argue it was factually incorrect.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 11, 2014 04:30 PM

That said, I took the second sentence: "Feminism has nothing to do with the proposition that women should be considered whole and complete members of the body politic, though it has enjoyed great success marketing itself that way" was that the author, in fact, had no qualms with the proposition that women are fully equal. And is fully supportive of such. It's just that the author does not believe that proposition to be represented by Feminism.

Once again, it all depends on how one defines feminism. One can do the Stacy McCain definition and arbitrarily exclude decades of history. That seems dishonest to me, when merely saying "contemporary feminism" would probably not cause me to object because a clear distinction has been made.

But when you talk about "feminism" with no qualifier, people like me think "feminism as a whole - all of its goals and all of its history". And that's hardly an unreasonable interpretation because there's no limiter or qualifier to tell me he only meant post-whatever feminism. I expect an editor of a major publication to understand qualifiers and their purpose. I expect more precision from a professional than I would from a commenter, for instance. Or even a blogger. I tend to interpret the words of a professional more strictly than I would an amateur's because words are his business.

Democrats actually say this all the time:

Compare "Tea Partiers have nothing to do with the proposition that gov't should be kept as small as possible, though it has enjoyed great success marketing itself that way".

And I do take their meaning as very much implying, "They SAY they want X, but they *really* want is Y (Y generally being some form of 'to destroy America and enslave minorities and womynfolk' ". Same way I took Williamson's statement. And the thing is, I don't really identify with the Tea Party, but I find that formulation offensive and insulting and dishonest to boot.

I wouldn't take that statement as disparaging of advocates of smaller gov't even as I would argue it was factually incorrect.

I very much interpret it as an accusation of bad faith. So this may explain why we see things differently.

Posted by: Cass at February 11, 2014 04:43 PM

I would interpret it as an accusation of bad faith on the part of the Tea Party, but not an accusation of bad faith on those who desire smaller gov't.

As an advocate for smaller gov't, the accusation of bad faith isn't against *me*, but that the Tea Party doesn't actually support that goal.

In some sense, that formulation is similar to my own. I'm not convinced that most of the mainstream Republican politicians actually want a less powerful gov't. I think they just want the gov't to do different things with that power.

The Tea Party is closer to my goals, but their methods do have some podiatric wounding problems. You mention the Unit and your Dad and that is problematic.

At the same time, I have a coworker who has a 30 year loyal Republican voting record, who has consistently volunteered for phone banks and walked neighborhoods distributing flyers and get out the vote campaigns and was at one time a vice chairman for the local Republican party. The last 2 years I hear nothing from him but about how put off he is by mainstream rebublicans and how he will never volunteer another hour, will never donate another dollar. He'll still vote, but that's all.

If *that's* the guy who's feeling abandoned by the party, the Tea Partiers aren't the only ones with a messaging problem.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at February 12, 2014 10:20 AM

If *that's* the guy who's feeling abandoned by the party, the Tea Partiers aren't the only ones with a messaging problem.

I couldn't agree more.

I certainly didn't mean to imply the Tea Party were the only ones with communication issues!

Posted by: Cassandra at February 12, 2014 10:24 AM

Observations:
1. That 'equity feminist' ref was informative to me. Thank you.
2. IRT to assertion that 'bumper sticker politics is invalid, I'd offer an opposing view. As it appears to me that the so-called 'Laffer Curve' has been validated by both the large marginal tax rate cuts of JFK & Reagan (income tax) and GW Bush (capital gains) ALL produced large increases in both GDP growth and gross income tax collections . . . looks to me like any bumper sticker that includes: cut taxes (reduce spending) is a winner on political, economic and philosophical terms.

Best Regards,

Posted by: CAPT Mike at February 13, 2014 12:25 AM

}}} Feminism is not an idea or a collection of ideas but a collection of appetites wriggling queasily together like a bag of snakes.

Snakes? I'd think more in terms of a four letter word... you know, one that starts with an "sh" sound and ends with the same sound as "hit"...

Posted by: OBloodyHell, 'Faeces Evenio', Mr. Holder?" at February 15, 2014 04:29 AM

}}} You're right - it's not difficult to figure out what generates traffic on the Internet.

Posted by: Cass at February 10, 2014 12:06 PM

YEeeaaah....

I think they call it "porn". :^D

.

Posted by: OBloodyHell, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." at February 15, 2014 04:37 AM

}}} managed to provoke Rush Limbaugh into suggesting that using birth control pills makes one a slut and a prostitute.


That is just utter CRAP. That's the Left's SPIN on his comments. It's got nothing to do with the REALITY of what he said.

He wasn't commenting about using birth control pills makes one into a slut and a prostitute.

He was commenting that if you needed THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS A YEAR of birth control, then

Woooo yeah, YOU PROBABLY FIT THAT BILL.

Because BC pills themselves are about 200-300 bucks a year. So the rest must be for condoms.

And that's one hell of a lot of sexual activity.

To use up 2700 bucks of condoms a year is pretty close to daily sex with the entire Superbowl's roster of players...

>:-/

Posted by: OBloodyHell, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." at February 15, 2014 04:45 AM

When you hear certain themes over and over again (women, but not blacks or Jews who vote for Dems en masse, are to blame for big government; women - but not men - are responsible for the decline in sexual morality; women - but not men - are responsible for rising rates of divorce/single parenthood; women - but not men - are to blame for things men do), they become more prominent in your mind than if you rarely hear them. And they become linked to the group you hear repeating them over and over.

FWIW, I link anti-male sentiment with the Left for the same reasons: that's where it's coming from.

I guess I just never thought I'd see conservatives denigrating women in that way, and it breaks my heart. There are good men and bad men; good women and bad women.

There's a messaging problem, all right, but it has far more to do with people listening to -- and repeating -- The Left's perversion of things said -- either direct rewording or vile twisting of meaning -- as though they originated from the Tea Party/Right.

And also taking the words and actions of faux Tea Partiers (like Michelle Bachman's outright THEFT of the term for mainstream Republicans like herself and her cohorts in "crime") as though they had anything to do with the Tea Party idea.

Shall we discuss the multiple conversations I've had with at least vaguely rational black people who write off the Tea Party as racists -- not because they've EVER ACTUALLY MET ONE, much less gone to a TP Rally -- but because:
1) They've BEEN TOLD this... by the media (NOT "Faux News", of course!!)
2) They've BEEN SHOWN a picture or video of some LONE ASSHOLE at the back of, or outside of, a TP rally wearing some blatantly @#%$##$ racist thing.

That it could just as easily have been a piece of shit liberal deliberately smearing the TP -- no, that cannot POSSIBLY BE... >:-/

More critically -- the reason why many traditional republicans take issue with the current GOP leadership has far more to do with their relentless abandonment of everything the GOP has historically stood for since the start of the 1990s, and their falling all over themselves to "resist just enough" the aims of the Left so as to be able to "claim" they fought while never actually doing a single $#%%$^%#$^ thing to stop the Left from doing whatever they want. >:-/

Remember the "Contract With America"? How much of that contract actually got kept, once the citizens of the nation gave the GOP the political clout to actually do what they said they would?

Term limits?
Reductions in spending?
Budget Reform?
Social Security reform?
Balanced budgets?

Anyone?
Anyone?

Bueller?

(insert sound of one cricket chirping)

The elections of 2006 and 2008 were a wrongheaded response to the fact that, by 2002 and 2004 it was clear that the GOP had become nothing more than "Democrats Lite"... supporters of the EXACT same crap the Dems were doing, just "less filling".

So, yeah, there's a lot of disgust with the existing political process, combined with well-earned cynicism about ANY current political HACK actually doing or saying anything other than exactly what they have to do to get put into office, and not a single thing more.

Posted by: OBloodyHell, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." at February 15, 2014 05:13 AM

That is just utter CRAP. That's the Left's SPIN on his comments. It's got nothing to do with the REALITY of what he said.

You are flat out wrong. Read his direct quotes.

I did, before I wrote this and I was disgusted and shocked to see how many folks on the right airbrushed what he actually said. There are recordings of his show, and they don't support your version of what happened.

Quote 1:

"What does it say about the college coed Susan Fluke [sic], who goes before a congressional committee and essentially says that she must be paid to have sex? What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. "She's having so much sex she can't afford the contraception. She wants you and me and the taxpayers to pay her to have sex. What does that make us? We're the pimps. "The johns, that's right. We would be the johns -- no! We're not the johns. Well -- yeah, that's right. Pimp's not the right word."

Quote #2:

"So Miss Fluke, and the rest of you Feminazis, here's the deal. If we are going to pay for your contraceptives, and thus pay for you to have sex. We want something for it. We want you post the videos online so we can all watch."

You need to educate yourself about what he actually said, not all the shameful excuses various folks on the right made for him.

I don't have any problem criticizing the Left, but I won't lie to do it. The truth matters, OBH.

Posted by: Cass at February 15, 2014 07:40 AM

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