Saturday, May 28, 2016

Realizing That Gender Equivalence Is Clearly Insane

... leads to very bad results for women.

This essay about re-tribalizing America is easily the best one on any subject that I've read all year. It assembles facts into a coherent picture of what is happening right now in American culture in a way that clarifies so much of what had been a jumble in my head. I'm still processing it, but here's a single paragraph excerpt and a bit of commentary.
As Dreher adequately documents, the hegemonic narrative regarding gender is clearly insane. And while the level of insanity has climbed exponentially in the past decade, virtually everyone under-30 (my generation) has been marinated in relentless gender-equivalence propaganda since kindergarden. But, as the male cohort grows older, the distance between the experienced reality of of the dating market and the official dogma becomes unsustainable. The cognitive dissonance is simply too great, and boys are driven to seek answers elsewhere. And those answers come, with varying degrees of accuracy and crudity, from the PUA/Game/MRA/RedPill blogs. Whatever their faults, they all have one redeeming quality – they are manifestly not insane. This comes as a great shock and relief to boys. A shock because they realize the magnitude of the deception they have experienced, and a relief because they realize they are not the crazy ones.
Our sons have all gone through exactly this. As they were raised in a devoutly Catholic home and sent to Catholic schools*, they have not latched on to the Pick Up Artist (PUA) or Men's Rights Activist (MRA) movements, but they know for a fact that all of the gender equivalence they were taught in school is utter nonsense. Dittos for the racial grievances.

Our boys are not tribalizing in the way the essay suggests because they have a centering, Catholic foundation, but what of the boys raised in secular homes where there is no indisputable basis for objective morality?

In the long run, the fundamental problem the secular world faces is that it can't articulate an answer to the question, "Why not?"

Here's what our boys feel: I've been lied to and put down all my life for behaving as a man. No matter what I do, I'm held responsible for things that happened in the past and behaviors that are instinctive, like appreciating a beautiful woman. Their secular peers are taking this to the next level and deciding that if it was all a crock, why shouldn't they do what their bodies demand?

Without an objective basis for behavior, the secular world can't answer that "Why not?"

It goes further than that. Just as the Catholic abuse scandal rocked the church by attacking its moral foundations, the insanity of the gender equivalence movement is undermining the moral foundations of the secular world. Those foundations were always thin and weak as they're based on personal, subjective ethics so it doesn't take much to totally wash them away. "Sin is being out of alignment with my values" as Barack Obama said, emphasis mine. The end result is exactly what we're seeing in the culture. Lots of preening about gender equivalence by the elites in universities, the arts and government, but in practice, the use and abuse of women by men who have learned it was all a lie.

Gender equivalence was always a crock. Women and men are complimentary as St. John Paul II cogently argued in his Theology of the Body.

* - While public schools are an order of magnitude worse, if you think Catholic schools aren't at least partially infested with this nonsense, you are sadly mistaken.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Without Truth, There's No Church

I'm reading a book right now on why Catholics, particularly young ones, are leaving the Church. It gives several reasons derived from surveys, all of them valid. I'm in a hurry this morning, so I don't have time to give you the list; I'm sure you can guess most of them.

I agree with it at the micro level, but not at the macro level.

At the macro level, what has happened is that we no longer believe in the Truth. That is, there is no one Truth for people to find about life, morality, salvation*, God* and the other over-arching questions in life. Catholicism is all about defining the Truth through logic, experience and prayer. If there is no Truth, there's no point looking for it and no point in an institution that purports to offer it.

The Church is like a store that says it sells unicorns. Since unicorns don't exist**, there's no point frequenting the establishment. It's not that God is like a unicorn, it's that Truth is like a unicorn. Most of the people leaving the Church aren't becoming atheists, they're just bailing out on the institution.

More ponderings on this later.

* - Assuming, of course, that God and salvation exist.

** - Update: In the comments, Foxie points out the flaw in my unicorn analogy. The Truth really does exist, it's just that we don't think it does. The store really does sell unicorns, but the customers refuse to see them and therefor don't come in to shop. It's still a lousy analogy, but at least now it's a bit better. Thanks, Foxfier.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Greece's Future In One Chart

... and maybe not the one you'd think.

Greek GDP is way off its peak and isn't going anywhere.

Meanwhile, they're borrowing money to make the payments on their debts. To say that they're going to grow their way out of this is an act of pure optimism. There's no indication of growth at all. In fact, given their location on the Islamic invasion route, it's a good bet that Greek GDP is going to start going down.

I have a blog post in mind about the progressive, post-modern, secular world and debt as a sequel to the one about their attitude towards children, but I've been struggling with the data. Perhaps this data says it all. Europe is as progressive, post-modern and secularist as it gets. If this is indicative of anything, it's that the Euros see debt as a way to hide from reality.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Life On The Road

I'm away from home this week, playing concerts* on the East Coast. This trip has been a grind as our hosts are young and inexperienced and are over-scheduling us. We're running from one venue to the next, wolfing down Subway sandwiches for lunch before launching into another presentation. Sometimes our talks go long and we're late for the next one. It's all good, though. The crowds have responded well and the trip has been worthwhile.

In my life, almost everything has a Monkees reference and this is no different. From "Monkees on Tour," here's Mike quoting Peter about life on the road. I always think about this clip when we're out "on tour." It's pretty accurate.

Our crowds involve fewer screaming, teenage girls, but other than that, it's about the same. ;-)

* - When we go on travel to give presentations or do marketing, my partner and I use the rock star metaphor and call it "playing concerts."

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Why Don't People Just Leave Venezuela?

I've been wondering this for a while. The place is a total wreck and everything is collapsing around them. Why don't they just hop a ship or a plane and get out? ZeroHedge has the answer.
For the average middle class person in Venezuela -- educated and still holding on to a good job -- he needs two years of wages to buy a single plane ticket in his own currency. He needs to work for two full years to buy one single plane ticket -- he's stuck there. The problem is that he waited too long to leave. That's something important that I write about often: You have to know when to leave. You needed to leave Venezuela at least three or four years ago; now you're getting to the point where you're stuck there. The official exchange rate between the USD and Bolivar is 1 to 10, but unofficially which is the real one you experience, is more like 1 to 1,000. So they basically are starving you to death through a completely devaluated currency which is what you're getting paid in.
I hadn't thought of that. You used to have money enough to buy tickets out of the country. Now you've just got worthless paper. If you've got a family and a home, if you've got roots in the place, you're much less likely to make a run for it, so you stay, hoping things will get better until it's too late and leaving is no longer an option.


Monday, May 23, 2016

Now We're Just Killing People For No Reason At All

Apparently, we whacked some Taliban dude in Afghanistan.
Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansoor was likely killed Saturday in a U.S. drone strike in a remote area of Pakistan, a U.S. defense department official said.
Why? We're leaving the place. If you're not going to win the war and impose your will on the country, then what's the point of killing? Whether the guy was bad or good, I don't see the point in killing him. Like the Democrats, to take one example, the Taliban isn't driven by individuals, it's driven by ideology. 4 years from now, Bernie Sanders won't be running for president, but they'll still be some socialist nutbag in the Democrats' primaries.

If we're going to get out, let's stop killing people and get out. If we're going to stay, let's bring in 250,000 troops and turn the place into the 51st state. This pointless, neither-here-not-there involvement is nonsense.

We killed people in a country we'll be leaving in a little while. Yay?

Sunday, May 22, 2016

You Get Weird When You Live Alone

... or when you only live with people who think just like you.

The problem with living alone is that there's no one to say, "Dude, you probably shouldn't do that. It's really weird" when you eat a dinner of oatmeal, bacon and beer dressed in a polyester track suit.

Similarly, if you're a post-modern, secular progressive at a university, news media office or in the Administration, chances are good that you're completely surrounded by people who think almost exactly like you. So when you decide that 6', 300# men who dress in women's clothing ought to be allowed to join 12-year-old girls in the restroom, there's no one there to say, "Dude, you probably shouldn't do that. It's really weird."