Fun with fallacies 17: Feminism will fix all your PROBLEMS!!

Nirvana fallacyThe Nirvana fallacy, is the fallacy of rejecting solutions to a problem because another solution may be better. It effect it creates a false dichotomy between a real world solution and a theoretical solution that may be better.  It’s closely related to a concept named the “perfect solution fallacy” where the non-perfect solution is argued against on the basis that it will not solve every single aspect of the problem. The Perfect solution fallacy on the other hand, is an example of black and white thinking, where complexity is overlooked.

So, when MHRA (Men’s human rights activists) argue that there needs to be advocacy groups for the rights of men and boys, and feminists counter with that feminism is the perfect solution (and that they will get to male suicide rates, divorce rape and imbalanced family courts once they are done with the important things like women being able to walk around naked at 3am without fear), they are committing a perfect solution fallacy.

On the other hand, when MHRA groups argue that there needs to be help for male victims of domestic violence, help lines for suicidal men, and such things, and feminists argue that domestic violence and male suicide is a result of Patriarchy, which won’t be fixed by setting up the equal support system for men that women already have, they are committing the Nirvana fallacy.

The goal of either, is to dismiss practical solutions, either on the grounds that the solution is not perfect. A great example is that “we have helmet laws, yet people still die in motorcycle accidents, thus helmet laws do not work” alternatively “Come on baby, condoms are only effective in like 70% of cases… let me hit it bareback”

How do you spot when someone is engaging in this fallacy? There are 2 major questions you can ask yourself:

  1. Does their argument against your solution seem to be highly theoretical, with no seeming connection to reality?
  2. Does their argument against your solution, seem like they are doing the equivalent to arguing that you should not put a piece of plywood over a broken window, because then you can’t look out for a few days?


Fun with fallacies 16: #Yesallmen and #Yesallwomen

Yes, I picked this just by accident, it has nothing to do with the hordes of feminists, social justice warriors and male accomplices of these group committing this fallacy so frequently that its easier to point out when they are not doing it. Of course, I’m guilty of doing this on occasion such as arguing “AWALT” (all women are like that) or using phrases such as “All women” or “All feminists”.

The basic foundation of this fallacy is to generalize from a small sample to the whole of a group. For instance, the leap from “1% of men are rapists” to “All men are rapists” is a hasty generalization.

To give you a little bit of a background on representative samples when it comes to research. The basic principle is that the sample should:

A) Be representative of the population as a whole

B) Be large enough to capture the population as a whole.

For instance, if you are looking into “campus rape culture” among 30000 students, matching the demographic mix of society as a whole in the age range of 20 – 25. Then in order for your sample to be valid within a reasonable confidence limit, you would have to:

A) Ensure that your group consists of people who represent the right mix of race and gender, are college students and are in the age range of 20 – 25. If you pick students at an adult learning facility who are mostly white, and between 40 and 45, you cannot say that this is representative. You also want to make sure that your sample is not confined to one area of study as this can influence your results. For instance if you asked the arts department at Columbia and the Arts and humanities departments at Duke you probably would have poor results.

B) Ensure that your sample is big enough to ensure that your sample size is valid.

Once this is in place, you can make educated generalizations about a group as a whole based on the information you got from your research. This is how this type of research is done for polls, or census surveys and so on.

The problem with the hashtag activists behind those hashtags is that it becomes very easy to prove their proposition wrong, as if you find a single man or a single woman who protests, that invalidates the proposition.

I’m reminded of David Hume, who made the observation that we can say:

  • The sun has always risen as far as we know.

But we cannot say:

  • The sun will always rise.


Fun with fallacies 15: Kettle logic

Kettle logicKettle logic originally comes from “Interpretation of Dreams” and refers to a person who holds a position, using multiple arguments to defend that position, when his arguments are internally inconsistent.

The original example given by Freud is one where a man is accused to returning a kettle he borrowed from a neighbor in damaged condition and he then uses 3 arguments to defend himself:

  1. He returned the kettle undamaged.
  2. The kettle was already damaged when he borrowed it.
  3. He never borrowed the kettle.

As you can see, each of these arguments by themselves are acceptable. However, argument 3 is inconsistent with arguments 1 and 2. He could not have returned the kettle if he never borrowed it, and in argument 2 he states that he did in fact borrow the kettle.

This is also what Epicurius saw when he came up with what has become known as the “3-O” argument or “The problem of evil”. Wherein god cannot be omnipotent, omniscient and omnibenevolent. In that if God is all of those three, then why is there evil in the world?

Kettle logic is usually one of the harder fallacies to spot, especially if you are not paying full attention. If combined with a flurry of argumentation, and arguments that are obfuscated so as to avoid being clearly contradictory a speaker can easily give the impression of having a lot of arguments at his disposal, despite the fact that they all contradict each other.

One thing that is often not mentioned is “Kettle citations” this is where someone cites a lot of sources in their argument, yet the sources may contradict each other on important points, while superficially giving the impression of a strong case. This is a phenomenon I’ve experienced quite a lot in debates on religion, where a believer will often cherry pick verses or quotations from a work in order to defeat the argument you are presenting that at moment.

For instance, they may cite the new testament if you are criticizing the somewhat harsh and unforgiving god represented in the old testament, and revert to quoting the old testament when the topic changes to homosexuality.


Fun with fallacies 14: Cherry picking

cherryCherry picking is not a logical fallacy per say, but I’ve chosen to handle it as one as it is very common in debates and other forms of discourse. The core of the fallacy is misrepresentation of an opponents position. Thus it is related to the straw man fallacy. The core difference lies in that while straw manning is a straight misrepresentation of what was said, cherry picking often quotes verbatim, but Continue reading

Fun with fallacies 13: Straw man argument

strawmanThose of you who get into a lot of debates online have inevitably found yourself either using, or facing a straw man. Now, this isn’t the fun kind of strawman people burn Nicholas Cage inside for participating in a crappy remake. This is the kind someone uses to make it appear that they have refuted your argument.

The core of the strawman is a misrepresentation Continue reading

Fun with fallacies 12: The Red Herring

redherringI was going to save this fallacy for later, but in writing the pieces on some other fallacies, I found myself wanting to reference this fallacy so it got expedited in my posting schedule. The Red Herring is a relevance fallacy and thus falls into the same class as straw man arguments. Now unlike the straw-man that is based on misrepresenting your opponents argument. The red herring is ultimately a distraction tactic to draw an audience away from the arguments being made.

As a general rule, the red herring will tend to lead an audience towards plausible but ultimately false conclusions that are not relevant to the topic at hand.


Participant 1: We need more focus on the suicide epidemic among men and boys, and we also need to focus on men’s health to look for reasons for the “life expectancy gap” between men and women.

Participant 2: I agree with participant 1 about the focus, but it is important that we remain focused on the rape culture as we are in a time where women are under attack.

As you can see from participant 2’s argument, it is not a response to the argument made by participant 1, as the second part of the sentence distracts away from the primary argument made by participant 1.

To write out participant 2’s response in a more clear manner:

“I agree with you, however I disagree with you completely now look at my issue”

Unfortunately, I have no good techniques to respond to red herrings except being brutal in following the red thread of the discourse and steering the debate by staying in control. This can be done by either:

A) Introducing your own red herrings to bring the debate back to the focus you want.

B) Ignore that the red herring took place, and what came of it.

C) Pointing out that the person is shifting the focus of the debate away from the topic (provided there is a defined topic for the debate).

There is also a second form of red herring that I’ve frequently seen politicians use that I refer to as the digressional red herring, where a politician will knowingly switch the subject with digressions a few times to draw focus away from the central topic.


On the subject of gun control, I think it is important to bear in mind the second amendment rights that our founding fathers built into the constitution. Our founding fathers were wise men, and their legislation has held up remarkably well, I remember when my father first read the constitution to myself and my sister by the campfire at our roaring fire at our cabin by the Lake in North Dakota. This is why family values are central to this country, by having strong and secure families, we can prosper and regain our competitive advantage in exports.

As you can see from the above text, the politician switched topic from the second amendment, to the founding fathers, to family, to family values and finally to the economy.

Fun with fallacies 11: You either agree 100% with what I said or you hate women

false dichotomyThe false dichotomy is one of those fallacies that many people do not notice in a heated discourse. My impetus for writing another fun with fallacies and picking this fallacy was that I ran into a youtube video where the core argument on an abstract level was “Either you accept all aspects of an ideology, or you are an enemy of that ideology”. If you’re read my post on religion vs ideology, here is your sign

At the core of a false dichotomy is a choice between two things, but those two are not your only options. “You are either with us or against us” is a false dichotomy in that you can always be ambivalent. One area in which humans are very prone to this type of fallacy is in our love lives. I’m fairly certain that everyone who reads this has had a friend with “oneitis” who is playing the “If I don’t get with her, I’ll be alone for the rest of my life.”

A way to spot a false dichotomy is by comparing the choice to the choice of “Live or die” there are only 2 options here, if you think there are more then odds are someone is trying to convince you through using a false dichotomy.




Female privilege

female privilegeI realize that some readers may laugh at the concept of women being able to have privilege given that systems of oppression governed by male privilege has spent millennia holding the woman down. However, the concept of systems of oppression is in itself a questionable thesis. There is no doubt that social systems such as legislation can act as a tool of oppression, for instance in the case of the Nuremberg Laws or Jim Crow laws, however the argument that systems act in an oppressive manner if they are not designed by a diversity of skin color or sex is inherently flawed.

The reasoning behind this statement is that the goal of a law within the Western legal system, be it based on common law or Civil law, is to remove such influences from the law itself, in effect rendering it neutral in terms of gender, race, religion or other characteristics. This is why Lady Justice is often depicted as wearing a blindfold.

The argument for these characteristics having a stronger influence on legislation is therefore, an argument that the law should discriminate based on race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or any other chosen characteristic. This was an element of the law until quite recently, and is a feature of among others feudalism. To give an example, the law in France used to apply in one way to the citizenry and one way to the Aristocracy.

What is privilege?

Some examples I’ve gleamed from reading around is that “straight white male, CIS privilege” manifests in an individuals interactions with societal systems such as government, private industry, interpersonal non-work groups and so on. For instance, the fact that white people use just as many drugs as black people [1] , but black people are more prone to go to jail [2] may be a symptom of “White privilege“, according to this logic.

Not satisfied with this, I found a list of 30 signs of male privilege [3], now I’m not going to quote them all just a few:

5. If you are never promoted, it isn’t because of your sex

8. A decision to hire you won’t be based on whether or not the employer assumes you will be having children in the near future

These fall into a category I’ve themed “Opportunity“, that because of your gender, or race or class, you will not be denied opportunity to achieve what you set your mind to, these are things that are legislated against in various laws, under the umbrella of equal opportunity legislation.

16. Balance a career and a family without being called selfish for not staying at home (or being constantly pressured to stay at home)

25. If you don’t spend much time on your appearance, you won’t have to worry about about being criticized at work or in social situations

These fall into the category of “Freedom from judgment based on choice/action“, in that they are not objective in terms of cause and effect. For instance, in the case of 25, the criticism could be because you are a female that does not spend much time on her appearance, but it could also be because you have a peer group that is excessively focused on appearance.

So, from that data, we can boil down privilege to 2 categories:

  1. Benefits in terms of opportunity.
  2. Benefits in terms of freedom from judgment/consequences from action.

This conclusion is supported by additional research and sources for male and white privilege [4] [5][6] While the research is nowhere near what I would conduct for a proper literature review for research that has to stand up to peer review it is sufficient for a blog.

So lets explore these two types of privilege in order.

Benefits in terms of opportunity

The argument here is that males (especially straight, white males) garner a benefit as a result of being male. This is somewhat embodied in the following quote [4]

My odds of being hired for a job, when competing against female applicants, are probably skewed in my favor. The more prestigious the job, the larger the odds are skewed.

According to a recent study, this is no longer true in STEM fields, where women are now twice as likely to be hired as equally qualified males. [7] A recent Guardian article found that women are more likely to be hired right out of University [8] than males.

If we break down the argument made in the male privilege section on opportunity and the concept of systems (which feminists love) then it follows that if a system is granting men more than their fair share of opportunity, then this should be across the board, it should not be situational. What do I mean by this? A system cannot be unsystematic, if it grants men benefits, then it should do so in every case, not in selected cases.

Words like “institutionalized” and “Systemic” at their root imply that it will be everywhere. If there is an institutionalized system that discriminates against women, then it should be omnipresent. Therefore, women should not have any advantages in opportunity, which the studies do in fact show they have. Now this is only the U.S. when we take a look at Europe where quotas are being implemented at light speed [9] this further adds to an advantage of opportunity and here is why. If there are 100 board seats to fill, and you know that 30 are earmarked for women, then it follows that the other 70 can be filled with men, women, or a mix of the two. So in theory, having all 100 of them being women is fine.

Secondly, education. The bastion of conservative and libertarian politics and theories. Women are earning more degrees than men in the US [10] and in Europe [10]. I also found that several European countries and the US are using affirmative action or similar programs with the end result being that less qualified females beat out their better qualified male counterparts. [12][13] If anything this is causing unequal opportunity created from a misconception that women are covertly oppressed, so one must seek to counteract this overtly.

Benefits in terms of freedom from judgment/consequences from action.

The argument here is that males in general, and straight, white, CIS males in particular gain a benefit in that they are judged less, are held less accountable for their actions and protected from the effects of those actions to a degree larger than other people.

This is somewhat embodied in the quotes:

Walk alone at night without the fear of being raped or otherwise harmed” [3]
 Which is blatantly untrue. If the writer had done his research, he would have ended the sentence with raped, and been right. Now he just looks silly when confronted with statistics from the Bureau of Justice [14] that shows that men overwhelmingly are the victims of crime and thus have even more of a reason to be fearful of walking alone at night. Men overwhelmingly are the victims of violent crime, including assault
If you choose to have children, you will praised for caring for your children, instead of being expected to be the full-time caretaker
This is assuming you even get that choice. As I’ve written about before, female reproductive rights are much better than rights for men, to the point where a woman can commit statutory rape and still get child support.
So, are men held less accountable for their actions than women in the western world? In what area?
If we look at conviction for crimes, men suffer harsher sentences for the same crime [15]. Is this what we would expect in what is supposedly a culture filled with systemic and institutionalized anti-woman sentiments and that according to feminists is a rape culture?
The value put on a person
I’ve dealt with the two former points, but as I was writing the part on freedom from consequences/judgment, I started to think of another aspect that had to be covered. A society that treats men better, I.E. a society with institutionalized sexism and misogyny, would it not follow that such a society would value men at a higher rate?
After all, we take better care of things we value, invest more in them and generally seek to maintain them do we not? This brought an interesting angle from an economic perspective. As more women than men are graduating college, it follows that more is being invested into their education assuming gender parity in intelligence.
If we assume that our society would seek to keep the more valued gender for longer, then the striking “death gap” [16] or as they call it “health gap” or “life expectancy gap” brings more questions than it answers. [17]
How about workplace deaths or the fact that men overwhelmingly are expected to put their life on the line to defend nations under attack? [18]


This has been a somewhat depressing post to write. There is a lot of tragedy in the numbers that I’ve quoted, but my conclusion isn’t where I wanted it to be, because there are two options:

  1. There is no patriarchy, in fact the western world consistently put benefits and entitlements for women into legislation, and work to make women have more opportunities for their level of ability and less consequences for their poor actions.
  2. There is a patriarchy but it is an extremely incompetent and stupid patriarchy that in its quest to oppress women, kill off men, punish men harder, somehow make men die sooner, and get less invested in them.






















Alpha, Beta, Ethos, Pathos, Logos


Beta game

In my first post on the Aristotle’s 3 parts of rhetoric, I explained how any communication consists of a mix of 3 elements. Ethos, the character and credibility of a speaker, pathos the emotion and psychology of a speaker, and logos the reasoned argument of a speaker according to Aristotle’s rhetoric. For communication purposes, this means a 3 prong model, where the logos consists of the message that the speaker wishes to communicate, the ethos his credibility, and pathos how he communicates it to an audience.

In an analysis of modern narratives and discourse, telling rhetoric from propaganda is difficult, never more so than between the male and female genders. A common statement is that men communicate information, women communicate emotion. Thus, one could argue that female communication is biased towards pathos, while male communication is inherently biased towards logos. Ethos, is relevant for both genders, men in terms of gauging how credible a speaker’s logos is, for women the social status and psychology of the speaker.

Much has been said about game, but many times “game” is defined as “alpha game” and men attempting to adopt alpha game to have more success with women, rather than game being a system of thought including behaviors, world perception, self-perception and many other things that exist in various ways.

For the purpose of this article, “Game” is defined as “A sexual strategy employed by a person or persons in order to achieve a goal

The Beta Game

The Beta game, or provider game consists of using primarily logos in behavior and speech in order to convince a woman to either enter a long term relationship or to have sex with the Beta. Many Beta men use external validators (clothing, property, job titles) superficially as ethos (to establish social proof) and supplication to draw out desired emotions (pathos). Taking into account the current cultural narrative, one could argue that men are subtly trained into become beta males. If one looks at the mainstream communication regarding relationships in popular culture, one could point out that the narrative within romantic comedies, often follows the female 10, who after going through a string of alpha fux, relationships, finally realizes that her shoulder to cry on throughout the movie, is the love of her life.

Even in their most evolved forms, the beta game is centered on a valid chain of reasoning, that I described in depth in the article “Grounded theory and the PUA community

The chain of reasoning goes (short version):

Major premise: Women are attracted to nice, stable guys

Minor premise: I demonstrate how nice and stable I am.

Conclusion: Therefore women should be attracted to me.

Where the Beta got the information that underlie this valid, but unsound chain of reasoning can be left up to debate and many people have written articles on it. However, the Beta is running this game as a sexual strategy under the belief that it works, and thus his rhetoric is perfectly suited for his beliefs.

He is trying to convince by argument the female of the species to give it up for a man who by his information “hits all the targets” that the social narrative has told him to hit. Beta reasoning is driven by logos, his pathos and ethos merely servants to his ultimate communication: “I am a high status male because of X“. This would work with other men, because as a gender we are generally fact and logic driven. It does not work with women, because women do not respond to logos, they respond to Ethos and Pathos. This approach is very typical of the male approach to problem-solving, identify the present state, identify the ideal state, use deductive reasoning to figure out the steps between A and B.

This problem solving approach is very rational when hunting mammoth, fixing an engine or troubleshooting your career, but not very rational when dealing with women. The trouble with the Beta Strategy is that it intermittently works. For instance, when a woman finishes her party years and starts to enter her epiphany phase, she will be looking for Beta tells, as this will be her desired goal. However, a woman is also inherently programmed to hold out on sex when soliciting provision, in order to ensure long-term investment. This leads to many Betas ending up in “unintentional monogamous long term relationships“, frequently on the woman’s terms. I suppose one could argue that men trick women into sex, women trick men into relationships. The trouble with the volatile success-rate of Beta game, is that if it was a complete failure the man would learn that he needs to re-calibrate. The message to re-calibrate his approach, would translate into finding ways to be more alpha, or to appear more alpha. The two options would result in him either being more alpha or appearing more alpha.

However, this would be negative for the female side of the equation, as their dualistic sexual strategy depends on having both genetically fit alpha genetics and provisionally fit beta genetics for maximum optimization. If he appears more alpha, this may lead to a woman engaging in her short-term sexual strategy with him on false pretense. In essence, it becomes more difficult for her to differentiate between real alphas and pretender alphas. If a large group of men started becoming more alpha, this may compromise her long-term sexual strategy and ability to find a provider male.

Women need and want both Beta males and Alpha males within the sexual market place, in fact its a requirement for their sexual strategy. Thus, beta game becomes encouraged to some extent, through cognitive bias. A beta male engages in his heavy front-loaded investment pattern, develops oneitis, and sticks around for a period of time, if this is a failure 3 – 10 times, he rationalizes it through “She wasn’t the right woman“. This is encouraged in his female peer-group, in the form of “You are such a nice guy, you will find the girl for you“, “She just wasn’t the right one who appreciates you“, “How are you still single?” or a range of variations thereon. Thus, the failure of his beta game is not attributed to himself, or the approach, but to the woman. If he obtains a single success in 10 attempts, this is seen as validating his approach, and him finally having found “the one“. While a 10% success rate isn’t bad in terms of approaches, the beta approach takes a long time, and heavy resource investment, it’s not a case of the 10 approaches in 2 hours that takes place during a sarging session.

Alpha Game

Alpha game, as mentioned earlier is the game most people think of when they hear the word “game” in this context. Alpha game can and often is driven by logos, it has a goal, it follows a straight line of reasoning, but it is not communicated as such. In alpha game, Ethos and Pathos are used to their full extent and full value. Ethos is used to provide social proof, by being surrounded by hot girls (triggering pre-selection), cool people, by being a “leader of men” (Mystery), and a range of other qualities. Pathos is employed to tailor the approach to female psychological triggers, such as dread game, negs, demonstrating self-confidence, poise and an abundance mindset.

Alphas understand that “The best way to make a man do something is to convince him it was his idea in the first place“. The Alpha reverses the position, where he is now the buyer and the women are trying to sell to him. This is embodied in the old Mystery gambit “So, tell me 3 interesting things about you that aren’t about your looks” what it communicates is a disinterest in a woman’s appearance. It signals “I’m around women just as hot, if not hotter than you all the time”, it flips positions in the negotiation, it signals “work harder” and a range of other things.

This approach triggers a woman’s short term mating strategy, thus, the requirement for the Alpha to prove himself as a long term provider is not relevant. If one contrasts Alpha game and Beta game, the former communicates covertly, the former does so overtly. A common statement is that “it’s not what you say, but how you say it” and this is no-where more clear than in Alpha game. The focus here is on triggering a woman’s appreciation for his ethos, namely his social standing, and his pathos, his ability to communicate in a way that appeals to her emotions and psychology.

The major difference between Alpha game and Beta game, comes in what they trigger, and how they trigger it. The Alpha game triggers a woman’s short-term sexual strategy, by communicating that the male holds superior genetics, and thus she should seek to secure these genetics rapidly.

Summary and Conclusions

From the perspective of evolutionary psychology and biology, the dualistic sexual strategy of women makes sense, from a risk vs reward perspective. A woman who got saddled with offspring that has inferior genetics, has wasted a resource that is very energy intensive, namely a pregnancy. A pregnancy also means that the woman is at increased risk for predators and the risk of dying in childbirth. Thus, for her being able to filter men into “short term sexual strategy” and “long-term sexual strategy” is critical for her survival. Women who were inherently biased towards one of the two strategies, were probably less reproductively successful than women who were prone to the duality.

What Beta men do not understand is that the same woman who insists on a clean house, yells at you for having more than a single glass of wine and insists on Gucci purses. Will also fuck a broke musician in the back of a filthy van, while he’s high on heroin on top of a filthy blanket. The Beta approaches women in the same way you approach a company when you want to get a merger started, you give them all the good reasons why they should want to merge with you overtly. Alphas on the other hand understand that the key to getting the deal is to make the other person think they are the ones who initiated it.

It reminds me of a tip I read in a book on selling, “The easiest sales are when your customers come to you begging to buy your product”  Alphas understand that by using ethos and pathos they make women want their product. Betas think that by telling a woman what a great product they are that they will get sales. An alpha has no need to communicate his alpha status overtly using logos, he does so covertly through use of ethos and pathos. His character communicates his alpha status through posture, self-confidence, amused mastery, and various other traits. His alpha status is supported by both his own psychological and emotional communication, but also through the ethos and pathos of others. For instance, the “leader of men” coined by Mystery, is a case of the male both communicating himself, but also others communicating to support his communication.

Anyone can say “I’m a high value male” and this is in essence what the Beta strategy tries to communicate overtly using logos, through a mixture of virtue and provision signalling. Through virtue signalling, he is communicating that he holds the virtues he thinks women want, and which society tries to communicate that women want, these include, stability, reliability, monogamous potential, long-term mate potential. Through provision signalling he tries to communicate his ability to provide for her and her children.

More Reading

The Red Queen: Sex and the Evolution of Human Nature by Matt Ridley

Rhetoric by Aristotle