Incentive V. Motive Force

I recommend that my readers, if they haven’t already, read Dalrock’s two most recent posts: “Headship makes all the difference”  and “Incentives matter.” There is an important point or clarification that I think should be made here, especially with regards to the first post.

People like Gilder believe that women civilize men. Another way of putting it is that they feel that women are the motive force which pushes men to become civilized. Women push, and men are moved. This is not at all how it works.

Rather, women can act as an incentive to men to civilize. However, it is men who civilize other men. [And women too, while we are at it- but that is for another post.] And the approach used, if one wants to succeed, is always the tried and true method of the carrot and the stick.

The stick takes the form of punishment and discipline. Discipline must be taught, must be encouraged, and perhaps even beaten into a man growing up. Without it he will revert to his “factory default setting” and become a thug. [At the same time it is possible to go overboard and beat out the masculinity from a boy- in which case he doesn’t truly become a civilized man at all, as he is not a man.]

The carrot, however, can be a couple of things. Respect being one of them. Access to a good job and position in society being another. But the most powerful carrot is the promise of a woman… and with her a family. The promise of locking down a loyal woman, and the attendant sexual access that comes with it, is a powerful incentive for men. The kind of incentive which will make them endure the “stick” and become civilized.

However, as others have pointed out, that only works if the carrot is edible. When women are no longer seen as marriageable, when men no longer see them as ‘worth the effort’, then it all falls apart. Without the carrot, men won’t finish the “civilizing” process. It seems that there are two primary outcomes from this: they resist the discipline, and becomes thugs, or they  simply endure it as long as they have to and then become the so called “grass-eaters.” Either way, the fail to live up to their potential and the civilization they live in suffers for it.

This is something that used to be understood in the past. Unfortunately our society has thrown it out, along with so many other necessary bits of knowledge. As things continue to fall apart, I anticipate efforts will be made to try and address this. There might even be an effort to seek out what was lost. But I do not anticipate any actual solution happening- society won’t want to give up what it has “gained” for itself.

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16 Comments

Filed under Blue Pill, Civilization, Men, Red Pill, Sex, State of Nature, Women

16 responses to “Incentive V. Motive Force

  1. LawDog

    I had a similar conversation with a friend last night. The plain truth is that, in Anglo countries in 2018, your two choices as a man are to either share a woman, or go without one. If you’re lucky, you only share a woman with her iPhone and the prior lovers who occupy her memory. If you’re less lucky, you share a woman with her “work husband” who really understands her. But you will share her. The scenario where you have a wife devoted wholly to you is not on the menu.

    Men will respond that that essential dilemma in a lot of various ways, but almost none of them maintain civilization.

  2. fuzziewuzziebear

    Is it the donkey’s fault that he is presented with bad carrots?

  3. “When women are no longer seen as marriageable, when men no longer see them as ‘worth the effort’, then it all falls apart…This is something that used to be understood in the past. ”

    Is this really true? That last part, I mean? Why, then, did no one understand it? It seems to me that the present situation was too far removed from possibility that it would have seemed like idle speculation to most in the past. Indeed, the Sexual Revolution depended (and depends) on precisely this: “Oh, sure, courtship is a thing of the past, but people will still marry, just by process of unchaperoned dating!” “Well, maybe there’s some fooling around going on, but they’re going steady, they’ll get married after high school!” “Hey man, free love is the thing now! ‘Hypergamy’? What, are you some sort of ecologist or something?” On and on.

    Credit should be given to those of our the (curmudgeonly or prescient, depending on one’s viewpoint) ancestors who decried moral decay, etc., but I feel like the current environment wasn’t really foreseen. Has any society ever been rich enough to have grass eaters, or had as wonderful a toy as the Internet to keep them occupied? Could anyone have imagined the torrent of porn available, serving as a sort of bread & circuses for those low on the status totem pole? But the real one is: Did anyone believe there would be such a lack of modern shame as to then do the following step of predicting mens’ reactions to it?

    OK, so maybe I’m demanding too much rigor. But I do so because I think there has been (or will be) some gain in this. “Are you sure communism would be so bad? It’s never been tried!” used to be an irrefutable (directly, anyway) argument, which is why communism used to be the hip thing for the cosmopolitan set that liked to armchair-philosophize. But four hundred years ago, the USSR will still be in the history books. Similarly, at some point someone’s descendants will assign a name to the present situation, and it will be avoided for a long time after (with future errors to take its place, of course).

    If I wax grandiose for a moment, our blogs might be cited in some term paper!

  4. Novaseeker

    I think that the idea behind the current system is that men will do whatever the system asks them to do when it comes to women because they have no choice due to the very strong sex drive that most men have. That was clearly the idea behind second wave feminism, and it has drifted into 3rd and later waves, too — women can be running around with hatchets ready to castrate every man in sight and men would still be doing whatever women require them to do in order to get sexual access because of the “the thirst”, which is much higher on the male side than on the female side in terms of constancy (women also have a very high sex drive, but it is situational and responsive rather than constant, and that makes all the difference).

    That isn’t generally wrong, it seems to me. Men have adapted, by and large, to the changes. Most men don’t avoid women. Most men still get married, to whichever woman will marry them regardless of “n count”. Most men will date whichever girl will date them, over a certain threshold (which for many men, looking around in the real world, isn’t that high, folks). Most men will go along with work husbands and GNOs and wife and friends only vacations and daughters with BFs that sleepover and on and on, as long as the sex spigot stays somewhat on, and they have access to some live sex. Men are extremely, *extremely* easy to manipulate by their sexuality — extremely easy. And women have evolved to be the absolute masters of this, again, precisely because their sex drive is situational and not constant, meaning that it is easy for most women to manipulate most men sexually, most of the time. So generally the idea that the feminists had that most men would go along with whatever they wanted from them due to sexual desire and need was basically right — at least it has been so, so far.

    What wasn’t anticipated by feminists (some of them were anticipated by others) were the following:

    – Women’s freed-up sexuality going largely to the benefit of the most sexually attractive men (because these men trigger women’s situational sex drive, which turns the tables on who can manipulate/control whom when it comes to sex)

    – Some men at the lower ends of the scale dropping out altogether (not just from the relationship market, but from striving and succeeding in life) due to high definition broadband porn being available on demand for free, and the internet in general

    – the divorce of conception from sex resulting in a profusion of casual sex (where, again, the most sexually attractive men rule the roost as noted above), a reduction in family formation, and an explosion in single motherhood.

    Pope Paul VI foresaw some of this in Humanae Vitae, and was laughed at, for the most part, because at the time people thought he was catastrophizing. As hard as it may be for some to imagine now, at the time most people saw contraception as being primarily for sex between married couples, and so it was evaluated mostly in that light. People didn’t foresee the 1970s coming (Boogie Nights era), never mind the Tinder/Bumble era.

    But despite everything, most men do tow the line, and the reason is that their sex drive is constant, and therefore makes them subject to easy manipulation, and muddled thinking, often, when it comes to matters pertaining to women and their relationships with them. The exceptions to this are generally the following: religious men who have discipline (admittedly this is a very small number of men), low totem pole men who have little to no sexual opportunity and live in a world of porn, low testosterone men who have a naturally lower libido, and are therefore checked out to some degree from the sexual market place ratrace. Otherwise, men will do what women want to get sexual access because of their sex drives. It is only the men who are in one of the exceptional categories who will not, and they are not numerous enough to cause social changes.

    It often looks on the internet, especially in the manosphere, that there are more male resisters than there really are. The manosphere overstates the case, I think, in terms of how many of these men there actually are, because it tends to attract them, and so if you hang out here you begin to think such men are fairly common, when they are in no way fairly common in real life. In real life, most men tow the line because they prefer that to going sexless.

  5. It often looks on the internet, especially in the manosphere, that there are more male resisters than there really are. The manosphere overstates the case, I think, in terms of how many of these men there actually are, because it tends to attract them, and so if you hang out here you begin to think such men are fairly common, when they are in no way fairly common in real life. In real life, most men tow the line because they prefer that to going sexless.

    True, this.

  6. Lost Patrol

    Superb explanation, Novaseeker, and this…

    “It often looks on the internet, especially in the manosphere, that there are more male resisters than there really are.”

    Yes, I think so. Weddings are still a rollicking business between I5 and I95 at least. My 24 year old son mentioned last week that it seems like everyone he knows is getting engaged or married, and my august presence is regularly requested at weddings big and small, mostly big, no matter how peripherally the happy couple and I know each other. I guess so that there is a sufficient amount of protoplasm on hand for the videos.

    Across the Midwest getting married is still a thing.

  7. stmichaelkozaki

    This is one hell of a post, well done. My view:

    1) Men are the driving force behind civilization, full stop. Women have been skeptical from day 1 when Eve went with the Dragon…

    2) How we got here: The Church was so influential for so long men evolved to become dependent upon it (aka the State or rule of law) for their success (aka comfortable beta). It was a good deal; no struggle, just submit to the tribe. Women were rightfully skeptical…how do they vet the best male genetics when marriage is young and you can’t trade up? You gotta be kidding…

    3) Current situation: religion/state is impotent/irrelevant to mating. Marriage is at men’s risk and only the intelligent survive. Men must choose: Go Roissy (player), go Galt (MGTOW), or go Trad (trad RC, LDS, similar). But Christian men on the historical marriage gravy train? How dumb can people get?

    No matter what choice men should expect no help. Women will sit on the sidelines oblivious to their own destruction. A virgin(ish) “helpmate” outside of a tight community (or an aggressive international search)? Crazy. Even connected trads who marry local families will likely get little support from family, church, or wife (aka a “hurtmate” unless she comes from a increasingly rare good family). Upside? Women’s options for decent men are grim enough they will be more amenable each year.

    DG: that only works if the carrot is edible.
    That’s funny. And I’ve always like redheads.

  8. Novaseeker

    Across the Midwest getting married is still a thing.

    Yes, true. So you look at that in terms of the ages and you see that the national average is almost 30 and then what does that mean? It means outside 5 and 95, it’s north of 30, whilst inside it’s considerably south thereof, still. That’s why I’ve always said it’s hard to talk about these things even on a national basis (never mind an international one) because the markets and practices and incentives are all local, and are quite different depending on where you are located.

  9. Greg

    @Novaseeker (January 19, 2018 at 6:26 AM)

    While I agree with the overall assessment, there are men who have a degree of self-control trained into them outside of a religious context who, at the same time, are also able to decide whether to marry on rational grounds (for example, risk assessment).

    The irony, if you will, of “most men will marry [almost] regardless of the qualities of the wife” is that there is a genetic basis for self-control, and that this lack of self-control gets passed on to the children. The daughters will be like the mother, and the sons will be like the father – if promiscuity and sex-cravenness are the qualities of the wife and husband, respectively, then they will be the qualities of the children. In a religious context, parents are effectively equipping their children for failure (especially in the context of sexual morality). (Admittedly, it could also be due to parasites altering host behavior, but I think genetics plays a larger role.) The question becomes: To what extent does a man have a moral responsibility to find the best mother of his children?

    So, the men who fall into one or more of the groups below:

    Most men still get married, to whichever woman will marry them regardless of “n count”. Most men will date whichever girl will date them, over a certain threshold (which for many men, looking around in the real world, isn’t that high, folks). Most men will go along with work husbands and GNOs and wife and friends only vacations and daughters with BFs that sleepover and on and on, as long as the sex spigot stays somewhat on, and they have access to some live sex.

    … are ensuring that such behavior continues by reproducing. Can they help themselves from doing this? Yes. The belief that they can’t – that men cannot control their sex drive – probably is an extra nudge in the wrong direction. They’re told they can’t or shouldn’t. Popular beliefs are an interesting thing, particularly when viewed alongside cognitive biases. Self-defeating beliefs (e.g. “people are unable to avoid fornication”, “people are unable to avoid adultery”, “people are unable to exercise self-control”, “if people aren’t having sex, that there is something wrong with them”, “the male sex drive is unconquerable”) play a large part in the current situation, no doubt related to the cultural decline of Christianity.

    In any case, I imagine that much of the justification for female behavior comes from those aforementioned types of men, who (potentially) recognize that those things are wrong but overlook it anyway. An example are the men who ignore n-count (either not asking, which is more common, or asking and simply accepting). The justification of female behavior after the fact is rooted mainly in a justification of the man’s choice of spouse. A women with one premarital sexual partner other than her husband has a 560% greater chance of initiating a divorce than one whose only sexual partner is her husband. That was the percentage from 20 years ago (1995). The latest numbers from the CDC NSFG (2015) put that percentage increase at over 700%.

    There is an internal conflict between the emotions and the mind, and I suspect being reminded of how they’ve made an objectively poorer choice explains why such men are often quite angry at being told (or reminded of) the risks of marrying a woman with N > 0. Incidentally, this anger also follows the pattern of gender in-group preference – men and women like women (as a group) more than men like men (as a group) or women like men (as a group). This is part of the reason why women will defend the actions of women as a group (particularly when there is a collective benefit to lowering standards) but men will generally not engage in this behavior on behalf of other men. The typical justifications (“they’ve changed”, “statistics are all lies”, “she’s not like other women”, etc), other than airs of a salvific view of (poor) male spouse-selection decisions, have disturbingly become justification for the behavior in all settings. One minor exception: Something I’ve noticed on CAF is that some fathers will attack the virginity requirement (in the abstract) because he knows his own daughter(s) is/are promiscuous. In other words, attacking the notion of temporal consequences of promiscuity because one does not wish for them to apply to their situation, or attacking said notion because they don’t want the marriageability of their daughters to be negatively effected.

    What I find interesting is that both cases are an example of trying to implement a suboptimal solution to a problem (the optimal solution was to simply observe and promote Christian morality) – it was (at some level) their poor decision-making that led them to their current state and now they feel they must argue that their state is in fact good, or even the best state. Because the arguments they are looking for do not exist in a religious context, they seek out arguments which are exclusively secular. A major problem with this, from the perspective of Christianity, is that to use those arguments is to endorse the secular viewpoint (with only the weakest of religious facades applied, as an afterthought). It does not take long to find examples, even on Christian/Catholic forums, of people relying on what are essentially secular arguments for promiscuity. This makes sense, as it becomes emotionally harder for most people to argue – with, say, scripture – against promiscuity (and the temporal consequences arising therefrom) when they and/or their spouse were/was promiscuous. (Men, in particular, must justify to themselves that the promiscuity of their wife is not as bad as it really is.) One of the profound and longstanding conclusions from psychology is that simply writing out something that you don’t agree with makes you more inclined to support it. The effects of participation preceding this process makes the decline in teaching of sexual morality to children (by parents, especially) all the more unsurprising.

    I think this particular issue is of some importance, because it’s so black-and-white – there are no justifications for fornication. It’s simply immoral in all cases. If something that is obviously immoral can be justified by men, they can justify things in areas that are not as clear-cut.

    Regarding the notion of a carrot on a stick: It is a cruelty of the modern world, for sure, that the only way to licitly engage in sexual behavior is to get married, and yet the vast majority of women are, even by the lowest of standards, unmarriageable.

  10. stmichaelkozaki

    …vast majority of women are, by the lowest of standards, unmarriageable.

    More men every year are agreeing with you (see link for chart which is broken down by demographic). Note white males are the slowest to wake up, but it’s happening: http://www.stateofourunions.org/2009/graphs/chart_11_SocialMarriage.png

    And of course the share of adult Americans married is lowest since 1920. This is a big social change showing no sign of abating. In 2015 only 1/2 were married yet about 3/4 were in 1960. Give it time; culture is alike a battleship, it doesn’t turn on a dime…

  11. Women have always been a powerful enticement and will continue to be no matter how they behave. The most revoltingly emasculating shrew can still give men a boner to rape her with. Women literally can’t be sexually unattractive. The way civilzation itself started was the ruler Nimrod gathered women into centralized locations for sex to bring in the tribal men from the wilderness. These places became the first great cities. This is the plot of the Epic of Gilgamesh, Enkidu representing the wild men, uncivilized, tempted by Shamhat, representing sexual access (granted by powerful men). Of course that was a very stripped-down, beta version of civilization, preceding even marriage.

  12. Greg

    @Patrick (January 22, 2018 at 3:21 AM)

    Women have always been a powerful enticement and will continue to be no matter how they behave. The most revoltingly emasculating shrew can still give men a boner to rape her with. Women literally can’t be sexually unattractive. The way civilzation itself started was the ruler Nimrod gathered women into centralized locations for sex to bring in the tribal men from the wilderness. These places became the first great cities. This is the plot of the Epic of Gilgamesh, Enkidu representing the wild men, uncivilized, tempted by Shamhat, representing sexual access (granted by powerful men). Of course that was a very stripped-down, beta version of civilization, preceding even marriage.

    Acknowledging that I am probably an outlier on this matter, I would have to say that women can literally be sexually unattractive. Their behavior and views can make them unattractive, as well. I’m not sure if you are making universal statements as shorthand, but there are indeed subsets of both men and women to which your statement does not apply. I understand that the concern, of course, is focused on the majority of men and women.

    From your comment, two questions come to mind:

    1. If such an enticement encourages men to support dyscivilizational views, is that a flaw in the premise (that women encourage civilization)?

    2. If some men can resist such enticement, does that make them dyscivilizational or pro-civilizational?

  13. Greg

    @Patrick

    On another note, is your blog title a reference to a sea shanty (“Leave Her, Johnny” or “John Kanaka”)? If so, it seems we have an overlap in taste in music.

  14. anonymous_ng

    Let me tell a tale of two high schools. They are both in UMC parts of the metropolitan area, but one is fairly conservative, while the other is fairly liberal. According to stories I’ve heard which may have no relation to reality, amongst the college bound kids, the liberals are screwing, and the conservatives are not.

    What that means, I have no idea, but I do find it interesting.

  15. Greg,
    The principle is always there. Christian marriage is a virtuous iteration of Shamhat at the watering hole. To be more precise we should be talking about Christian civilization. That’s what’s in danger. It isn’t possible that humans will ever go back to being wild and uncivilized. Civilization itself isn’t at risk and probably never will be. That theme is also in the Epic of Gilgamesh when Enkidu laments that he is no longer accepted by wild animals and on his death bed curses Gilgamesh for having tempted him with love and sex and taking him away from the wilderness.

  16. And I am of course generalizing or, better, talking about archetypes.

    I named my blog after that country song, God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy.

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