Gendernomics: Of Mirages and Meat Scales

The first book I ever read on investing was a tome entitled “The Intelligent Investor” written by Professor Benjamin Graham. This treatise outlines Graham’s philosophy of “Value Investing“, of which Warren Buffett is the most well-known practitioner. As a young man I struggled a lot with understanding Graham’s idea of investing based on “intrinsic value“, because I couldn’t quite conceptualize what it was in my mind. Was it the value of retained earnings minus debt, the book value of the company, the projected earnings per share in perpetuity discounted by net present value? As I continued to feed my mind a steady diet of finance information, this did not alleviate the confusion, rather it compounded it. However, I still found immense value in Graham’s magnum opus. The one quote that has stuck with me for a long time since reading the book is:

In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run, it is a weighing machine.

This is a valuable principle, because we often run into situations where what is popular is what is easy, makes us feel good in the moment and hurts us long term, while what is hard, makes us uncomfortable and brings us growth long-term is unpopular. This is illustrated by a conversation from the Andrew Ross Sorkin movie “Too Big Too Fail” in a conversation between Michele Davis (Cynthia Nixon), Neel Kashkari (Ayad Akhtar) and Hank Paulson (William Hurt)

Neel Kashkari: Poor bastard who bought his dream house? The teaser rate on his mortgage runs out, his payments go up, he defaults.

Henry Paulson: Mortgage-backed securities tank. AIG has to pay off the swaps. All of them. All over the world. At the same time.

Neel Kashkari: AIG can’t pay. AIG goes under. Every bank they insure books massive losses on the same day. And then they all go under. It all comes down.

Michele Davis: [horrified] The *whole* financial system? And what do I say when they ask me why it wasn’t regulated?

Henry Paulson: No one wanted to. We were making too much money.

In the short term, everyone was making too much money, and despite quite a few people being aware that it was going to become a major threat to the financial system, nobody wanted to be the canary in coalmine. They were faced with a choice, where they could side with the voting machine, face no negative consequences and in fact be positively rewarded, which was a much more palatable choice than to side with the weighing machine, face a lot of negative backlash from their colleagues, and potential lose millions. This is not uncommon, as whistle-blowers, “doomsayers”, and the messengers tend to be disliked because they ruin the mood.

A good analogy would be that a high school kid’s parents are out of town, and he decides to have a party. However, as the evening progresses, the party starts to get out of hand, people show up with kegs, before you know it the living room has turned into a mosh pit and people are playing ultimate frisbee with $200 china. If the kid decides to call the cops, or his parents, he is likely to be the person who faces negative consequences, despite the fact that he was not in the moral wrong. Continue reading

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The Chalice and the Crucible

So in other news this week, Dr. Jordan B. Peterson has made a controversial statement about reproductive marxism, or as he referred to it “enforced monogamy” [1].  From what I could gather from the statement, the simple premise is that which I outlined in my essay on reproductive marxism.

In nature, it appears that the natural order mating opportunities flow to men much in the same way that capital does in capitalism. It flows from those who are unsuccessful to those who are successful, and the more capital a person has, the more capital will flow to them. A man who is unsuccessful in the mating market will be left with very little, if anything at all. A man who is successful in the mating market will receive even more mating opportunities.

However, this creates instability in the system in the same way that the above average collection of wealth among a small number of highly successful businessmen creates instability in a capitalist system. The fundamental order of capitalism is competition, as constant competition ensures that resources are efficiently allocated. However, the goal of any capitalist businessman is to gain a monopoly position where the maximum amount of revenue can be generated and where above average profits will be attained. Once an oligopoly or a monopoly comes to exist, resources will no longer be efficiently allocated.  Reproductive Marxism

In any system that is a zero-sum or appears to be zero-sum, a side-effect is that the outcomes are often winner takes all, rather than being normally distributed. What this means is that wealth is distributed on a curve where the top 2 – 3% of the population control a great majority of the resources, rather than the resources being distributed roughly according to population size. It’s a fancy way of saying the top 1% control 99% of the resources, the bottom 99% control 1% of the resources. This tends to create a lot of instability within the system.

If one were to use the framework of conflict theory, one could posit that within a society one has a myriad of groups that all have different interests, some of these are deeply invested in the present social order because this social order benefits them in terms of resources. Other groups are in conflict with the present social order because it does not benefit them in terms of resources. For instance, the core argument made by Occupy Wall Street protesters was that the present system benefits at the top 1% at the cost of the 99%, economically speaking.

Much of Dr. Peterson’s work, from “12 Rules for Life“, to “Maps of Meaning” deals with the balance between mechanisms that enhance and preserve stability, and those that reduce and destroy stability. I’ve themed this the conflict between the ID and the Super-ego in Freudian terms. Where the ID, cast in Peterson’s analysis as chaos represents the natural order of things, and the super-ego order, the civilizing effect of reason on nature.

The article that somewhat inspired me to do some research, and subsequently write this essay, was a very effective piece of rhetoric, very accurately aimed at the market the author sought to influence, out of which my favorite quote is:

The idea that women will only sleep with the top men if given the chance is straight out of pick-up artist garbage pseudoscience. This ideology of “beta” and “alpha” males (the latter getting all the sex) is based on a mangled and since-retracted study about wolves, and bears no relationship whatsoever to human societies. Worse, it instills the false notion that women are largely status-obsessed sluts who will have to be basically coerced into sleeping with anyone but the most attractive men. [2]

Fortunately, yours truly cares quite little for rhetoric, I much prefer data, so what does the data say? In God We Trust, everyone else has to bring the data. In the quoted paragraphs there are 2 concrete statements we can look at.

A) The existence of Alpha males and Beta males as defined by sexual success.

B) The principle that women would rather share an alpha than own a beta.

From these, we can form a couple of hypotheses. In the case of the first statement, it’s quite simple, the basic premise is that a minority of men have a majority of the sex. This is often shorthanded as the “sexual market pareto principle” that Chris Rock verbalized as “20% of the men do 80% of the fucking“. If this is not the case, one would expect male sexual success to follow a normal distribution meaning that you have extreme outliers on both sides, and most men are somewhere around the mean. This means, simply put, that one would expect 33% of men to have less than the average of sex partners, 33% would have the average number of sex partners, and 33% would have an over-average amount of sex partners.

For the second statement, that women are and I quote “largely status-obsessed sluts” this is quite an easy set of hypotheses that would follow from the former two. In effect, if one falsifies the null hypothesis, and thus is capable of concluding that sexual success among men does not follow a normal distribution, and instead that a minority of men have a majority of the sexual success (as measured by sex partners) then one can establish not that women are status-obsessed sluts, because that would be concluding on a single cause, but that there is a sexual disparity among men, and thus that factors in female sexual selection behavior likely plays a part creating this sexual disparity. Thus, the following are the hypotheses for this essay:

Null Hypothesis: Attention from women to men follows a normal distribution

Hypothesis 1: Attention from women to men does not follow a normal distribution

Null Hypothesis: Sexual success among men follows a normal distribution

Hypothesis 2: Sexual success among men does not follow a normal distribution

Continue reading

Gendernomics: False Profits

It’s been a while since I wrote a Gendernomics essay of this type, but it seemed to be the perfect follow-up to the essays on pro-social vs. anti-social dominance hierarchies I wrote a while ago.

Perhaps the change that has the most impact when moving from a hunter-gatherer existence to one based in agriculture is the simple fact that agriculture generates a surplus. A hunter-gatherer tribe generates roughly the amount of value in a year that they consume, whereas with agriculture a group of farmers can generate much more value than they consume in the same period. Once you move from an agrarian society to an industrial one, the ability to generate such a surplus increases.

From a simplified macro-economic perspective, the reason for this is quite simple. A hunter-gatherer tribe has little left over for positive investment, they create enough value to feed themselves, and cover replacement investment (fixing their weapons, clothing and equipment) but they do not generate enough to improve their ability to produce. An agrarian society generates enough value to feed themselves, clothe themselves and invest in things that expands their capacity to produce. An industrial society generates enough to cover their basic needs and invest greatly in productive capacities with leftover resources for excess consumption.

Utilizing the simplified C-I-S model for a nation, where C stands for consumption, I for Investment and S for Saving, we could argue that theoretically for a hunter-gatherer tribe 90% of their generated value goes to consumption, and 10% to investment. For an agrarian group, perhaps 75% goes to consumption, 15% to investment and 10% to saving, and for an industrial population 50% is consumed, 35% invested and 15% saved. These are not empirical numbers, but serve to symbolize the development of human economics.

Gross investment is composed of net investment which is spending that increases the availability of fixed capital goods, means of production and goods inventories. For instance, buying a new building, new machine or increasing your inventory of products, and replacement investment which is replacement of depreciated capital goods. As an example, buying a new house is increasing the availability of fixed capital goods, maintaining that house over its lifetime is a case of replacement investment, as you are fixing the wear and tear of use.

One of the key elements is that if investment falls below replacement investment levels, then the ability of a group to produce goods and services goes down. Put very simply, if a two man carpentry crew has 2 hammers, and break 1 hammer a year on average, but do not make enough money to replace that hammer, their productivity will decrease.

Continue reading

Gendernomics: Your Competitive Advantage

A running theme in Gendernomics has been the use of a company or a product as an analogy for the journey of growth a man has to undertake in order to become valued in differing social contexts. A classic way of creating a competitive advantage is through core competencies, namely a unique combination of hard to duplicate competencies. Last Saturday I did another Red Man Group podcast on Rich Cooper’s channel [1] with Rollo Tomassi, Goldmund Unleashed, Kyle Trouble and Rian Stone the topic for which was “The Importance of Game“. As part of the podcast, we discussed when each participant first became aware of the manosphere, or as it was called back when I first found it “The seduction community“. I often joke that I’ve been aware of game since the opener “Who lies more, men or women?” actually worked, and while I don’t consider this a blog dedicated to game, those early experiences do inform a great deal of my writing.

I never got really good at “club game“, which was perhaps the earliest iteration of game, complete with platform shoes, a focus on AMOG tactics, and featured quite prominently in “The Game” by Neill Strauss. I knew a lot of guys back then who got very good at it, but for the most part these were men who thrived in that particular environment. A piece of early and quite solid advice from an early PUA “Guru” who has since moved on to Purple Pill Shill was “Figure out the type of women you are attracted to, figure out what type of man they are attracted to and strive to become it, and figure out where to find those women“. This is simple and applicable advice. It’s also quite good advice, however the major issue I see with it, is that it’s the cause of the downfall for many early PUA.

Those who have read “The Game” will remember the story of Mystery’s breakdown because of his oneitis and his inability to maintain a relationship with her. This had a simple explanation, he figured out what type of girl he was attracted to, figured out where to find them, what man they went for, changed himself into that man, only to find out that he couldn’t maintain his Mystery persona over time. This is very little different from the approach cluster B women use with men, tailor their persona to the man, maintain it until the man commits to them (get her pregnant, marries her etc.) and then drop the facade. The major difference is that when women realize they have gotten a bad deal, they get out of it instantly, when men realize they have gotten a bad deal they either work themselves to death trying to improve it with little success, or engage in a race to the bottom. Continue reading

Yes, No, Maybe..

A lot of men find the manosphere in search of a magic pill, they want a methodology or a solution for the problem of rejection. The problem of rejection can easily be formulated as “In order for a man to become sexually successful he has to risk and face rejection”, the fact of the matter is that very few of us relish facing rejection. It is to be gazed upon and found unworthy. This is what a questionable element PUA used to sell in their bootcamps, “If you pay $3000 and come to my bootcamp, you eliminate the risk of rejection forever”. Naturally this is tempting for men who are petrified by rejection.

However, it also influenced PUA in a negative direction. A product tends to be developed towards a certain market, and in this case it was men who were petrified of rejection, and frequently suffering from oneitis. The most frequent question I heard asked in the young manosphere started with “There is this girl” and ended with “How do I make her my girlfriend”. In essence, this is like saying “There is this company, how do I make them a customer”. Well, first off you need to have a product that can improve that company, then you have to get them to notice your product, then you have to sell them on it.

This may not always lead to success, but hopefully it leads to someone asking the question “Why are we working so hard to tailor our product to this single potential customer, instead of seeing if what our product already does can appeal to a much wider market who is dying to buy it?” Continue reading

Gendernomics: Untangling Variables

One of the more challenging tasks when doing research is the removal of superfluous variables. In the simplest terms you want to study one independent variable, meaning a variable that you or nature manipulates, and measure the change in the independent variable to the change in the dependent variable. For instance, if you want to understand the relationship between protein intake (independent variable) and lean muscle gain (dependent variable), you want to manipulate protein intake and measure the change in muscle gain.

However, reality is rarely this simple,there are other variables besides protein intake that affects lean muscle gain, such as resistance training, overall calorie intake and calorie expenditure, hormone levels, and various others. Which is why most modern analyses use multiple variables. For instance, if you wanted to determine what effect protein intake had on muscle gain, you would need to determine what effects other variables had on muscle gain, so that you could isolate out how much of lets say a 3 lb muscle gain in 6 months was due to protein, and how much could be attributed to other variables.

These are based on a mixture of our experiences and what we have been trained to do, and in some cases they make perfect sense, in other cases not so much. In some cases a person has intuitively correctly identified relationships between independent and dependent variables, and thus has an innate grasp of influence and outcome. In other cases a person has made a connection that makes no sense, this is quite interesting when observed in people suffering from delusions, in that their logic can often be sound, but is based on a flawed cause and effect relationship.

This is a major challenge for trained and experienced researchers, and it’s even more of a challenge for people who are not familiar with logic and epistemology, because our minds are constructed to make cause and effect determinations on the fly all day, every day. Athletes have a reputation for making sometimes hilarious cause and effect errors that lead to things like a team not washing their jock-straps for the entire season on a winning streak, various pre-game rituals and so on. Continue reading

Gendernomics: Differentiation and Features

I had another essay building on last weeks essay on responsibility and accountability planned this week, but I saw a tweet that caught my interest and started me down the rabbit hole of sexual market value again. More specifically, how what constitutes a high quality product in the sexual market place.

Christian McQueen (@TheCadClub on twitter) recently tweeted out the following:

If this trend continues it’ll be very easy for pretty girls world-wide:

1. Be in shape

2. Don’t have grey hair (dye it if need be)

3. Don’t be a hateful feminist

You’ll have your pick of great men.

I’ve touched on this idea before in Gendernomics and previous essays, most particularly in Female Sexual Strategies Part 2. The gist of my argument was that if one has a market, where a need exists and the only options to satisfy that need are poor ones, then those poor solutions can still do remarkably well. This is a function of the contrast effect more than anything, in that if you’re 6 ft 1, and go out with a group of men who are 6 ft 3 and taller, you look short by comparison.

This comes down to the fact that people would rather have a need fulfilled to a minimal degree as opposed to not having it covered at all. If you have to drive in a nail, and you can’t find a hammer at a good price, you may use a wrench or a rock. You have a need you have to fulfill, a preferred way to fulfill it (want) but you will compromise.

As I’ve mentioned, I travel a lot for work, and this means that I also end up talking to a lot of random people on various means of transport and in general. One of the most interesting groups to talk to are women in their 70s, 80s and 90s, who have daughters and granddaughters, as they tend to lament the lifestyle choices of their offspring. This is because back in their day, before egalitarian equalism, it was common knowledge what men wanted in a wife, often embodied in aphorisms like

The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach” – Know how to cook and take care a man.

Behind every great man is a great woman” – Know how to support your man and help him succeed.

I could extrapolate much from these simple sentences, however our culture contains enough examples of what type of wife or husband is undesirable in comics, literature and culture. Personally my favorite examples in comics is from Andy Capp and Bringing up Father, both demonstrate the dynamic of hapless Beta male with the domineering, harridan of a wife. Back in the 1940s and 1950s, this was a funny caricature, these days such comics appear almost prescient in how gender relations have developed. Continue reading