Louis C.K. shows up several times in Phoebe Maltz Bovy’s The Perils of Privilege — not as villain exactly, but as an undeserving beneficiary: A white man who, through, through self-awareness and linguistic finesse, reaps admiration from a culture that values performative “privilege checking.” Her choice of example aged almost unbelievably well; six months after the book was published, Louis C.K.’s wokeness was revealed to be not just a profitable performance, but a facade for a serial dick-whipper-outter.
Bovy’s critique of privilege comes from the political left; she has no doubt that the kinds of inequalities described as “privilege” exist; rather, she believes the concept of “privilege” is a counterproductive way to describe and analyze those inequalities. And while I imagine Bovy takes no joy in what Louis C.K. turned out to be, it does put her in a great position to say “I told you so.”
(Because Bovy writes from the left, her book probably won’t be of much interest to conservatives, except for the schadenfreude of dozens of examples of liberals own-goaling themselves and treating each other horribly. If you don’t believe there is much unfair, group-based inequality in the United States today, but you still want to follow along with my reasoning, feel free to imagine you’re reading this in 1964 or 1862.)
(Late-breaking epistemic status: I still stand behind the definitional claim in the title, but my attempt to draw connections between the definitional claim and the moral argument were not very coherent. Also, many people reading this clearly think that “population” just means the sum of individuals, so I’ve clearly got more work to do in that area of the argument as well.)
I’ve recently noticed some advocates of human genetic engineering claim that eugenics is actually a good thing. I’m pretty sure the majority of these people are not in favor of of “eugenics” as the term has historically been used, and I think misusing the word in this way has bad consequences. The distinction I’m about to draw is often ignored in public debate, but it is both pragmatic and morally necessary.
The 2018 GSS data has been released. As in 2016, the number of young, virginal men (relative to women) has increased, which weighs toward interpreting this as a real trend rather than a blip. Thus, it seems that hypergamy may exist in a particular subset of the population.
It’s still not plausible to blame the Sexual Revolution, given the timing, but more recent factors (e.g. online dating) may deserve some attention. I still don’t believe that online dating is the real explanation, given that the data from OkCupid show relatively egalitarian outcomes.
(content warning: Happy Valentine’s Day! Let’s talk about culture war, inequality, and loneliness.)
For the first time, I made some effort to promote a post on this blog, and I was rewarded with some interesting discussion on r/slatestarcodex.
To recap: The modern sense of the term “hypergamy”, popular mostly on right-leaning parts of the internet, means that women mate across and up dominance hierarchies whereas men mate across and down. Some have claimed that, in the absence of monogamous norms, hypergamy makes sexual outcomes highly unequal; sometimes this is described as “20 percent of men getting 80 of the sex.” In my prior post, I narrowed in on a particular set of claims about hypergamy and showed that they are probably not true.
Somewhat to my surprise, no one took issue with any of the data I presented or any of the concrete conclusions I drew from it. I’m satisfied that I made a strong case that hypergamy, in the narrow sense I described, does not exist.
What surprised me is that a lot of people thought I was arguing against weak man, and said that most people in the manosphere don’t actually believe in the theory I argued against. The most common criticism was that the reason we don’t currently see harem-forming sexual behavior is that monogamy is a currently-enforced social norm, and that the Chad/Stacy dystopia is something that could happen in the future if we stop enforcing it.
I’ll talk about the implications of that broader, more plausible view of hypergamy shortly, with specific attention to issues involving involuntary celibacy, but first I’m going to show that many prominent people in the manosphere believe in the extreme version I originally argued against.
Bacon up that sausage, boy!
When I was a 90’s kid, I read a book on the Atkins Diet. Twenty years later, science still haven’t resolved whether low-carb diets are a good idea, but what really stuck with me was the recipe for fried chicken that used crumbled pork rinds as breading. What stopped me was not fear, but rather, inability to make good fried chicken. The air fryer removed the last obstacle, and here is the result:
The vegetable is spiralized zucchini, air-fryed with spices but no batter. I battered the chicken with egg and pork rinds, and unshockingly, it was pretty damned good.
(content warning: kicking the Culture War hornet’s nest pretty darn hard)
People like to argue about Jordan Peterson on the internet, so I’ll start this post with a Jordan Peterson video.
“Hypergamy” in the sense that Peterson is talking about has become a common theme in culture war debates over why young people are having so little sex, among other things.
The claim is that women, but not men, will only date, marry, or have sex with partners whose social status or attractiveness is higher than theirs. Peterson fears that this can lead to a sort of sexually Hobbesian state of nature in which a small number of high-status men get all the women, low-status men get none, and women are unhappy with their partners’ divided attention.
The proposed solution is “enforced” monogamy — enforced not by coercion, but by social norms — which supports a harmonious society in which most men are married, most women get the monogamous attention of one man, and children are raised in stable homes.
Some holiday experiments. My girlfriend got me an air fryer, and we had been talking about trying keto, so here’s chicken breaded with coconut flour – more specifically, a coating of olive oil, coated with coconut flour, nutritional yeast, and some herbs and spices.