Pile up on social conservatives

I’ve said many times that any alliance between the MRM and genuine conservatives would be a one-sided affair; we would be expected to prioritize their goals, while they would continue attacking us with abandon.  This has been confirmed with abundance in the past week, during which numerous members of the “manosphere” have launched fresh attacks on traditionalism and social conservatism.  Dalrock accuses us of working hand-in-hand with the feminists to legitimize female promiscuity.  The Social Pathologist also accuses us of spawning feminism with our alleged lack of acknowledgment of female sexual desires.  CL has been attacking Christian arguments (or rather a caricature of Christian arguments) against masturbation and pornography, coming close to blaming all male unchastity on wives who won’t put out enough.  These are all writers whose works I admire, original and insightful thinkers who have provided important witness to forgotten truths, and the sudden attack from all of them is rather stunning.  At first I had hoped that an idiosyncratic definition of “social conservatism” and “traditionalism” were being used, but it is becoming grimly clear than by “social conservatism” they mean social conservatism.  The words “social conservative” or “SoCon” have begun to be used as a term of abuse.  If only we would just die, the assumption seems to be, the disciples of Roissy could step up and retake the culture.  “SoCons” are to blame for everything wrong in the world today.

Could it be that the reason men’s advocates think they could do such a better job protecting the culture from feminism is that they haven’t had to try yet?  What political or cultural movement in the past half-century has been motivated by their ideas?  The central fact that our slanderers will not mention is that the only resistance to feminism in the past century has been from religious, i.e. social, conservatives.  We’re the ones who’ve been in the trenches fighting feminism and depravity all this time.  Not many feminists bother attacking “Game”–most of them haven’t heard of it.  All their attacks our directed at us–the Catholic Church, the evangelicals, and the social conservatives.  In fact, I’ll go further:  without the Catholic Church and the Protestants who get called “puritan” or “fundamentalist”, there would be no Right, no opposition to feminism, anywhere in the West.  Might I suggest to the rear-line generals of the MRM that some of the reasons for the things we do is that we’re the ones who actually have to worry about feminist counterattacks and about swaying the public?  It’s all well and good for the MRM to say that SoCons emphasize male fault more than female fault.  It’s we Catholics who are getting attacked as “misogynist” for our opposition to abortion, divorce, and promiscuity.  Arguments that center on female perfidy play right into this image of the “women-hating old celibates” and go nowhere.  We downplay that side of things so that our critique of female impurity and selfishness will have a chance of being heard.  Similarly, it’s easy enough on Game websites to boldly proclaim that all women are whores who respond only to “gina tingles”.  If you were actually trying to convince women to be chaste and faithful, you would have to grant them some moral agency.  It might also strike you as unhelpful to shit on the great theologians and saints of the Church for being insufficiently “carnal” when these women have already been told their whole lives that the world revolves around their vaginas.  As for male sexual sins, biblical exegesis aside, the reasons for the grave wickedness of onanism are not hard to grasp.  I would ask readers to read those two posts before saying that there is no case against it.  Masturbation is the scrap the sexual revolution throws to unattractive or introverted men.  Having (unfortunately) commited my share of sexual sins during college and then talking to several men about their sexual sins, I find the solitary vice distinct among vices for the despair it brings to those in its clutches.  They really think that they can’t stop; that two weeks is the most a man can endure without some kind of sexual release.  Like many sins, it is far easier to not start than to stop, and we do men no favors to concealing the gravity of this vice.  This isn’t ideology.  This is what I’ve seen talking to men, and where I myself might be if it weren’t for Jesus Christ and the Blessed Sacrament.

I am also unimpressed that traditionalism does a better job promoting a male-friendly culture with healthy male-female relationships than “Game”.  It is the latter, after all, that joins feminism in blaming the victim when a wife cheats; they say it means her husband wasn’t “alpha” enough.  We Christians have no trouble admitting that women have sex drives; we just don’t obsess over it like our adolescent detractors.  We don’t give a fuck if the little princesses have lots of orgasms; what we care about is that their husbands know that their children are theirs.  If women have to “repress” themselves to meet this hardly lofty aim, so be it.  In our fallen condition, everyone has to repress a little.  Any society organized around female sexual fulfillment is going to be organized ass-backwards.  Nor is it true that Christianity has some sort of lopsided emphasis of agape over eros.  In fact, I’ve demonstrated in previous posts that the moral theology of Augustine and Aquinas is already excessively erotic.  We must, however, not reduce eros to its carnal dimension; that is a far worse error than ignoring the carnal dimension altogether.  Eros is a desire for a full interpersonal communion.  As Joseph Peiper said, eros is what connects agape and sex and humanizes the latter.  When we realize that true eros desires an I-Thou union, we see that Game is actually hostile to eros because it teaches the man to regard his partner as an It to be manipulated rather than a Thou to be communicated with.

So, where is all of this leading.  It seems that the antifeminist blogosphere wants SoCons out.  We’re about to be as welcome on their parts of the web as NeoCons are on the Alternative Right.  Of course, the expulsion of the SoCons won’t mean the expulsion of all Christians; the ones with a suitable inferiority complex can stay, the ones who say that two millenia of reflection on the human condition is useless, and that we must take lessons from a bunch of cads.  Well, no thank you.  If I wanted to chuck my tradition and suck up to some modern fad, I would become a Marxist like my academic peers.  They at least have a genuinely impressive intellectual edifice built up.

If somebody wants to do a better job fighting feminism than the SoCons, I sincerely invite them to try.  If somebody wants to argue that I’m a dumb feminist patsy, bring it on, mother fucker.

77 Responses

  1. 😉 What vim and vigor. Good job. I see your point, and I agree with you on many points (i.e. that traditionalists and fundamentalists were the only stick in the mud in the past 70 feminist years, objecting to the game view of women, or that it even matters, among other things). I just wonder about the label – that either they are misapplying a label or generalizing too much regarding their perception of SoCons, or that the different types of SoCons are so diverse as to require more differentiation. I have heard some of the arguments before which they (Dalrock, et al) are fighting against, coming from people who are professedly SoCons, in many cases they (Dalrock, et al) are right. For a long time I was sincerely confused because they would label me as a SoCon and because of it presume things regarding my principles which were directly contrary to what I believed, making me either not a SoCon, or they were screwing up the labeling. I tend to think it’s the former.

  2. The “Game” nonsense is adolescent. Moreover, my guess is that it’s an interest only among would-be lotharios. The real Cassanovas don’t waste time talking about seducing women. Frankly, those sites are pathetic.

    Women will not be brought back from feminism by pencil-necks who try to prove how masculine they are by being jerks. Overgrown boys make poor allies.

  3. Dalrock surprises me, since he’s married and a Christian, and he’s never indicated that his wife is a slut he picked up out of the gutter. It’s like he’s started basking in all the readership and comment traffic, and the good press he’s getting from his commenters has gone to his head. Here he describes his travails with SoCons (“Gilligans”) and says “welcome to my hell”: http://dalrock.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/we-are-trapped-on-slut-island-and-traditional-conservatives-are-our-gilligan/

    Such a cross to bear!

    Bonald, beware! When you get 600 comments on a post, will you still be so humble and wise? Or will you swagger about with a Sturmabteilung of faithful commenters?

  4. The larger problem appears to be that, of the three broad possibilities seemingly presented to individual men in the present situation – social conservatism in gender relationships (SoCon), general avoidance of entanglement with women (MGTOW) or adopting the lothario / player lifestyle (Game) – none successfully address or counter the larger societal dynamics at play. In particular, none significantly operate to undermine feminism or its attack on crucial male roles – most notably those of husband and father – in the broader culture. In consequence, representatives of MGTOW or Game can aver, with some legitimacy, that SoCons fail to adequately challenge feminism or the breakdown of marriage and broader gender relations.

    However, apart from the modus vivendis forged by individual men, it is perfectly obvious that neither MGTOW or Game, if adopted on even a moderately large scale, can sustain a society for any significant length of time. Certain high-profile representatives of these perspectives are remarkably honest about this, admitting, for example, that they are simply fornicating while Rome burns. By process of elimination , the only live societal possibility left on the table is social conservatism, the problem, of course, being that it is maladapted to the present dysfunctional feminism-saturated culture. The one distant possibility would be some form of social conservatism “with teeth” – which would have to not only dismantle biased legal structures, but also initiate a cultural sea change regarding expectations and acceptability of gendered behavior – but there is little political or cultural will to enact such a program.

    Let us say, for the sake of argument, that the path regarding the progressive dysfunction of gender relationships is truly irreversible – certainly all the trend lines of interest move in one direction only, toward greater social unraveling: would MGTOW or Game be defensible choices in that context? In relation to the first, a quasi-monastic option, in the context of a religious dedication, is a live possibility if a rare vocation. Apart from this rarity, how do these choices serve the individual man? How do they preserve his sensibility – his soul, in fact – from either withering or corruption? Seen in this light, this is one of the greatest curses of feminism: it renders a basic, normative sensibility – a wholesome soul – problematic in the context of gender relations for the ordinary, individual man. Much the same observation could be extended with regard the ordinary, individual woman as well.

  5. There is a the reek of rancor and bitterness and will-to-destroy about Gamers. It’s like Karl Marx wrote “Die Frau” instead of “Das Kapital” and here are his fanatics. Just imagine the parallel version of Occupy Wall Street.

  6. Hello Continental Op,

    Thanks for the compliment. I expect we’ll never know; all this MRM and Game-bashing is going to take its toll on my popularity.

    I’ve been taken aback by Dalrock’s SoCon bashing because I’ve thought so highly of his work. I even agree with his main point in that article, that social pressure on women is more effective than on men, but I don’t see why he thinks that SoCons are what keep this strategy from happening. First, he doesn’t appreciate how we have to phrase things to avoid making the feminists’ accusations of misogyny seem too plausible. Second, equal condemnation of male and female unchastity (what SoCons propose) will have a disproportionate impact on women anyway. (They’re the ones whose bellies get big for everyone to see.) Feminists certainly realize this.

  7. I would like to know the definition they’re using as well. In my taxonomy, I gave a precise definition of “social conservative”, but I doubt that many people have heard of that or are sticking to it. In common parlance, “social conservative” is distinguished from “economic conservative” (libertarian or monetarist) and “national security conservative” (i.e. “hawk”). It tends to mean “conservative who’s mostly concerned about abortion, sexual morals, and the place of religion in public life”. By this definition, most of the readers at all the sites mentioned on my post (including mine) are most likely social conservatives.

  8. Bonald, I’m surprised you’re so dismissive of female sexual frustration. I think the Social Pathologist’s observation that the Church’s asceticism created an opening for feminism deserves genuine consideration, and I think he’s right that a more carnal Christianity has a better chance of being stable and gaining followers than a “damn their orgasms” Christianity.

    I also think you should acknowledge that society and the Church aren’t just failing to teach men to be attractive to women; they are actively teaching us behaviors that are sexually repellent to women, while telling us that that’s what women want. Even back in the 80’s, when I grew up, every message I got about how to please women was something that actively turns them off. If society were teaching women (including your wife) that men want them to shave their heads and curse like sailors, or teaching schoolchildren to spit in their employers’ faces, wouldn’t you want to change that? Half of Game is analogous to simply teaching men that spitting in your employer’s face is not a career-enhancing behavior, even though it works in the movies.

    Finally, I don’t understand why you’re so unwilling to distinguish between good Game and bad (manipulative) Game. Athol Kay with his married Game blog “Married Man Sex Life” seems to have saved many marriages.

    I agree that women have a responsibility to control themselves. But nothing is lost, and much might be gained, if the Church helps its couples bind more tightly, as the Social Pathologist advocates.

  9. The CasaPound campaign for reduced working hours for mothers of young children is probably about as far as one can go within the constraints of the EUSSR:
    http://translate.google.co.cr/translate?hl=en&sl=it&tl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fit.wikipedia.org%2Fwiki%2FCasaPound&anno=2

    The name of the proposal (“Time to be Mothers”) is probably more important than the proposal itself.

    I’m unclear about the details of the group’s ideology-but it (the group) seems to be large and influential. It’s hard to imagine anything like it existing in the Anglosphere.

  10. I think it’s The Social Pathologist’s dismissal of two millenia of Christian thought and experience that is outrageous. He reduces our whole moral tradition to a stereotype invented by our enemies. So women have sexual desires? So the hell what? Why do we assume that the way people used to behave was just social conditioning, while the way they behave now is how people truly are? Isn’t it just as likely that the historically aberrant promiscuity of today’s women is itself a product of social pressure? Don’t we glorify and encourage slutty behavior in a thousand ways, subtle and blatant? Reworking society to accomodate sexually voracious women would be accomodating a personality type society itself has created.

    Both “good” Game and “bad” Game are manipulative; it’s just that the former is done for a good end. If (as I believe), the means is itself problematic and unhealthy, then the good end isn’t enough to redeem it. I think many more marriages would be saved by removing women’s unrealistic expectations that they should be madly in love, ecstatically happy, and horny all the time, or else it’s time for the divorce papers.

  11. Bonald
    If one of the rules of the game is that if you cannot say anything that hints of “misogyny” then your side has already lost. Getting things back to sanity in this culture absolutely will require the saying a lot of things about female nature that females do not want to hear, do not want to believe is true, and sure as hell do not want men to believe is true. We may as well brace ourselves to this reality..This is one thing Roissy saw with great clarity right from the start. It has always given his approach a coherence and (dare I say it) integrity that SoComs generally lack in this regard. He was brave, in other words, when it came time to tell truth to power; and that power is the feminist hegemon.

  12. Of course, Gamers and MRAs attack Christian conservatives (make no mistake here, under the guise of attacking churchianity they attack traditional Christian morals), it’s because they are liberals who oppose any form of traditional restraint. They will complain about no-falt divorce, but how many would want to have a patriarchal marriage, in the times when it was practically impossible to get a divorce, even if the wife cheated (you had to prove it, and it wasn’t easy). How many of them actually want to be the sole breadwinner> It was not that long ago that a man couldn’t marry the girl he loved because her family thought he didn’t earn enough money.

    Essentially what the men’s rights activists want is to have no responsibilities towards women or their children whatsoever, just like feminists want to be absolved from all traditional female responsibilities (they have been largely successful at that). The two movements are the mirror reflection of each other.

  13. Anon
    Gamers and feminists may have similar looking goals but I have a question for you — Who started it? Who went first and who is playing catch-up? And its no good saying that there have always been gamers because gamers have never made the laws – you know, those things that the State enforces with police and guns. Feminists did, and big time.

  14. Great post Bonald.

  15. We’re the ones who’ve been in the trenches fighting feminism and depravity all this time.

    Not only that but against liberal sectors within conservatism, e.g. neoconservatives, social liberals whom label themselves conservatives.

    And even against heresies within religion, e.g. http://www.alittleleaven.com/

    Now that’s warfare.

  16. Yeah, and we lost, so it’s our fault.

  17. I guess we didn’t “man up”

  18. Rum, of course, feminists started it, there is no doubt about it. The problem is that MRAs (and those Gamers who support them), instead of blaming feminists spend a lot of time blaming Socons, whom they regard as even worse enemy than feminists. Now I read some Evangelical sites and tend to find them nauseating in their non-judgementalism, not only towards women but towards all sorts of sin . I have no problem with people pointing out their hypocrisy and I do believe that we should bring back the concept of shame. However, men’s movement seems to have problems with the concept of traditional morality in general, and they don’t try to distinguish between liberal “Churchians” and traditionalist men like AltRight bloggers. We are all Socon to them, and hence, the enemy.
    And their martyr complex is rather annoying.

  19. I do what I call “Gun Game.” SInce people are biologically wired to preserve their life, I find that pulling a gun works to get them to focus on what is important and behave in a manner consistent with preserving their life.

  20. This “Game” stuff is silly. I’ve never even heard of these dolts except by unearned publicity through your blog. At least the term “neocon” has a widely accepted usage and is understood to be derogatory. Their use of the term “SoCon” on the other hand is pretty amusing; it’s sort of like an inside joke the four nerds at your high school had, but none of the normal people understood why it was so funny.

  21. anon
    I do not disagree with your points but one should not overlook the divergence in the experience of the generations. It is overwhelming youngish men who have a bit of a sense martyrdom. In particular, they feel betrayed by their elders who, in their view, fed them a lot of mis-information about female sexuality that got them tons of rejection from young women, while those same young women were lining up for the type of guys that they were told women did not like.
    That experience will do a fast job of producing bitterness. Older generations did not see this because young women did not line up for sex with any guys at all. Or if they did they were very discrete about it. They certainly did not brag about it to the world on facebook. And no, this is not an exaggeration.
    Watkins
    It is an unusual form to make your debut in a forum by saying straight out that you know nothing about the subjects being discussed.

  22. Standing ovation!

  23. J’agree!

  24. What exactly are you opposing when you oppose ‘game’?

    My understanding of it is that game is the application of behavours that make a man more attractive to women.

    That is obviously quite broad and would include for instance combing your hair in the morning. Yet, I doubt combing your hair in the morning is in and of itself what you oppose. So, is it the motivation of the act – combing is fine, except when done solely to attract women? Does combing one’s hair to be more attractive to the opposite sex destroy our ability to have an I-Thou relationship?

  25. I’ve remarked before that games like to present the whole of their program as though it consisted in nothing but the least objectionable parts. In truth, there is nothing in those parts of game (such as being an engaging conversationalist) that traditionalists object to. What we object to is the nihilism, hedonism, atheism, utilitarianism, unapologetic (indeed celebrated) degeneracy, degradation of others (male and female alike), and all-around evilness of the gamers’ worldview.

  26. What we object to is the nihilism, hedonism, atheism, utilitarianism, unapologetic (indeed celebrated) degeneracy, degradation of others (male and female alike), and all-around evilness of the gamers’ worldview.

    Agreed.

    What interested me was Bonald’s comment:

    Both “good” Game and “bad” Game are manipulative; it’s just that the former is done for a good end. If (as I believe), the means is itself problematic and unhealthy, then the good end isn’t enough to redeem it.

    Which is in opposition to any an all game, no matter how immediately objectionable. I want to understand this completely before agreeing or disagreeing. Is combing your hair before a date, so as to be more attractive, wrong? If that is not ‘game’, what is?

  27. “Game” is something more specific than just “anything that attracts women”. A more adequate definition would be “1) the practice of giving off calculated displays of what the average woman will unconsciously interpret as signs of dominance and high status, for the purpose of triggering the subject’s sexual arousal; 2) a paradigm of male-female relations centered around these techniques”. I’ve tried to avoid morally loaded terms in that definition, but it’s clear that these techniques are naturally given to manipulativeness. Also, part 2 of the definition is important. It’s not just that Gamers think they’ve clarified male sexual attractiveness. They think their discoveries are so important that they revolutionize social science and make all previous traditions on gender relations obsolete. On this very blog, people have compared the Gamers to Newton and Darwin–and they were serious. Of course, many of the techniques recommended by Gamers, e.g. self-confidence and gentle teasing, are regularly practiced by most socially mature men, but that doesn’t make what these men are doing “Game”, because they’re not cramming their relationship into the Game paradigm.

  28. Of course, many of the techniques recommended by Gamers, e.g. self-confidence and gentle teasing, are regularly practiced by most socially mature men, but that doesn’t make what these men are doing “Game”, because they’re not cramming their relationship into the Game paradigm.

    So, it is the motivations that matters? If I do the things gamers do, but not for the reason they do them I am okay? The problem is deliberately aiming to arouse lust in the other person and viewing the entire relationship as a sequence of interactions where the aim is to build and maintain their lust?

    If I do these things without knowing what I am doing, because I am a socially mature person, it is okay?

  29. It’s the understanding that matters, the perspective. This is distinct from the motive, although of course the motive also affects the moral status of the action. As Saint Thomas says, a morally licit act must be licit by object, by intention, and by circumstances. A difficiency in any category makes the act wrong. As Proph has correctly pointed out, Gamers try to diffuse criticism of their obnoxious view of women by pointing the the more innocent and harmless recommendations they make. But this is obviously insufficient; no ideology, not even liberalism, is crazy in every single aspect and every single practical recommendation. For an ideology to be acceptable, all of its essential tenets must be acceptable.

  30. I believe Mr. Watkins was alluding to the obscurity of Game lore in the grand scheme of things. One can admit to never having heard of Game without embarassment, while not having heard of, say, Aristotle or James Clerk Maxwell would mark one out as uneducated.

  31. It’s the understanding that matters, the perspective

    So, someone could do most of the things that a gamer would do without ever actually using game and therefore not acting immorally?

  32. Bonald, you are correct that the people in the trenches are the Catholics and the Calvinists. The irony, given that we spent most of the 15th and 16th centuries fighting each other, is that now we ally because we believe in something.

    Which is why I find myself haning around what Alte called the christian geek sites — heck she even invented a motto “Pompous an Aspergery”.

    Oh, and the MRA want to subvert us into some kind of Christianity plus just like the feminists tried to. We should not fall into that error.

  33. Bonald,
    Game is female psychology period. It is extremely powerful. Every man that has a beleif in god and is of christian faith needs to study and understand “game” reguardless of what men think. The chistian church which is the basis of the constitution an the foundation of conservatism has bought in to pleasing man by adopting as the boiling frog feminism. Dalrock as done a lot of work and study on the problems in modern society and his work has brought him to where he is. When he started he had no concept of game. What he was doing was blogging on how to make for a good marriage. Many “christian” woman were involved in his blog and the poison of feminism had made christian just a status title to show virtue. The more Dalrock looked he found it had dominated the church itself just as it has here. MGTOW,PUA, the “peter pan” are men that are just surviving in a world that hates them. The church has been and currently is complaisant all in “good’ faith. .

  34. Bonald wrote:
    Dalrock accuses us of working hand-in-hand with the feminists to legitimize female promiscuity.

    Churches have a long history of harping on male wrongdoing and looking the other way at female wrongdoing. The sin is more one of omission than of commission but it’s still there. One reason why they do it is because of the majority-female church attendance, but it’s not the only one.

    Google F. Roger Devlin if you want a realistic account of female sexuality. He’s one of the few conservatives who ‘gets it’.

  35. What we object to is the nihilism, hedonism, atheism, utilitarianism, unapologetic (indeed celebrated) degeneracy, degradation of others (male and female alike), and all-around evilness of the gamers’ worldview.

    Well, if you define game to include atheism, nihlism, hedonism etc., of course it’s wrong. But that would seem to be more a function of your definition than anything inherent in the set of techniques recommended by those who study game.

    So, someone could do most of the things that a gamer would do without ever actually using game and therefore not acting immorally?

    As usual, arguments against game degenerate into semantics.

  36. No. The object and intention of game (seduction and fornication) remain illicit. What you call it is irrelevant.

  37. When the techniques are ordered toward serial fornication, then yes, those elements ARE present. You cannot reconcile seduction with Christian ethics; one or the other must be jettisoned from your life.

    Hence why most prominent gamers are openly and explicitly atheistic consequentialists.

  38. the techniques are ordered toward serial fornication

    But this is precisely what is denied.

  39. “most of the things that a gamer would do” are fornication and adultery, so no. But if you mean innocent playfulness–minus the B.S. evolutionary psychologizing over why it “works”–then sure. Game didn’t invent normal male-female dynamics, and they have no right to claim it as their property. Perspective does matter. A good Christian can spend his whole life organizing labor unions for the good of his coworkers. If he sees it as part of the class war that is the ultimate social truth, then he’s a dirty commie and a traitor to the faith.

  40. As I said to Stewart, one’s worldview is hardly a matter of semantics.

  41. Churches have a long history of harping on male wrongdoing and looking the other way at female wrongdoing.

    Not really. Churches tend to concentrate on human faults and wrongdoing.

  42. We may have lost the war but we’re not finished. We’re still here. We’re still alive. We’re still fighting. We still have the future to hope for.

  43. It is precisely your defining of game so as to necessarily entail an anti-Chiristian worldview that is at issue.

  44. What is denied? As I said, when the techniques are ordered toward serial fornication and adultery, then those elements are indisputably present. You literally cannot possibly reconcile a coherent Christian ethics with such behavior. It is impossible. Again, this is why most gamers are atheists and consequentialists and not natural law Catholics.

    As Bonald and I have both said, “game” has no claim to the traditional dynamics that have dominated gender relations for centuries (e.g., male dominance as expressed through confident behavior and conversation) — what makes “game” distinct, what is essential to game, is that worldview. That is its primary innovation. And it is that which we find objectionable.

  45. most of the things that a gamer would do” are fornication and adultery, so no. But if you mean innocent playfulness –minus the B.S. evolutionary psychologizing over why it “works”–then sure

    Yes, that is what I was asking. I was already certain you would label fornication and adultery as everywhere and always wrong.

    Can you go into what is wrong with their evolutionary Psychology? Is it the science that is broken or the inevitable manipulative frame of mind it engenders or both?

    Game didn’t invent normal male-female dynamics, and they have no right to claim it as their property

    Ha, yes, I am sure that the playful teasing was once called flirting and existed long before game.

    Since it is perspective that matters for so much of what they do, are you sure all those so called ‘good gamers’ are being immoral- I do not read this Athol Kay chap, for instance, but is it possible he is not going into the things you are opposing here, but instead simply outlining techniques that are not unique to game and which you do not oppose? Or do all gamers, even those in the marriage game market, tend to make the same error?

    Is it plausible people reading these gamer’s stuff, are taking the unobjectionable parts and then applying it without the broken perspective?

    Thanks for being patient with my many questions.

  46. the techniques are ordered toward serial fornication and adultery, then those elements are indisputably present…

    …“game” has no claim to the traditional dynamics that have dominated gender relations for centuries (e.g., male dominance as expressed through confident behavior and conversation) — what makes “game” distinct, what is essential to game, is that worldview

    So, would you be fine with the marriage game types, such as the previously mentioned Athol Kay, who, I am given to understand, try to explain these non-game aspects – ‘traditional dynamics’ – without ordering their approach towards fornication and adultery (marriage game)?

  47. What is denied?

    That the techniques are inherently ordered towards fornication and adultery.

  48. May have been true at one time but now they turn a blind eye to women’s faults while holding men to absurd standards. It neatly explains the abundance of born-again virgins at church and the corresponding lack of men in spite of all the demands to “man up”.

    Alcuin would agree with me and so would Anakin Niceguy

  49. That is not really “game” at all is the point I’m making — again, “game” has no claim on boilerplate advice like “be charming and confident,” which real men have been giving to their sons since time immemorial. And there is no sense in claiming that this alone is game and ignoring that about which gamers spend most of their time talking: namely, women’s biodeterminism and lack of moral agency.

    There are other things to object to re: Athol Kay, but from what I’ve read his recommendations seem largely consistent with traditional gender roles.

  50. I suggest you go back and read what I actually wrote.

  51. […] people to think clearly. We need Christian Geeks. Theology Geeks. Traditional theology geeks. As Bonald commented yesterday, the two groups who get in the neck are the hard core, crunchy theological […]

  52. […] not to love women.  Blogger Bonald from Throne and Altar made this basic point in his recent post Pile up on social conservatives (emphasis his): When we realize that true eros desires an I-Thou union, we see that Game is […]

  53. gamers spend most of their time talking: namely, women’s biodeterminism and lack of moral agency.

    Is it specifically this that you oppose? People could act indistinguishably from a marriage gamer (while avoiding fornication, adultery, etc.) and that would be no problem to you if they did not hold this view as the techniques themselves are not the essence of the ‘game’ you are critiquing?

    Do you know of any people labelled as ‘gamers’ (or whatever the term is) that do avoid all the talk of biological determinism and and lack of moral agency in the other sex? Either way, would such people be acceptable to you (withholding the criticism that they have labelled as ‘game’ things you do not think are specifically a part of ‘game’)?

    Do you think this biological reductionism is both morally and factually wrong?

  54. To the extent those techniques don’t involve deception or dehumanizing one’s wife, no, I really have no objection to them in and of themselves.

    I am not familiar with any gamers who advocate game from a perspective strictly compatible with Christian ethics. I don’t think any strongly Christian believers practice game such as it actually is.

    Yes, I believe biological determinism is factually wrong and, by virtue of its falseness, also immoral.

  55. To the extent those techniques don’t involve deception or dehumanizing one’s wife, no, I really have no objection

    Not lying and treating others with dignity is something I can agree with.

    Yes, I believe biological determinism is factually wrong and, by virtue of its falseness, also immoral.

    So, is the success of gamers with women either
    a) a lie
    b) incidental to their biologically deterministic theory?

    Are you able to explain the error in their theory?

  56. without the Catholic Church and the Protestants who get called “puritan” or “fundamentalist”, there would be no Right, no opposition to feminism, anywhere in the West

    This. The problem they have is that our opposition is based upon our Bible-based morality (which isn’t restricted to women), and they’re not so keen on all of that.

    It’s we Catholics who are getting attacked as “misogynist” for our opposition to abortion, divorce, and promiscuity.

    So true. I get an equal amount of hating from the feminists and the masculinists. I consider this proof of my even-handedness. LOL

  57. When we realize that true eros desires an I-Thou union, we see that Game is actually hostile to eros because it teaches the man to regard his partner as an It to be manipulated rather than a Thou to be communicated with.

    I have to disagree. Game, frankly, saved my marriage. I’m a traditionalist, reactionary Catholic monarchist, as is my wife, but we were both raised in a feminist society, and thus both approached things very, very wrongly, but with the best of intentions.

  58. Cecil,

    I think he’s talking less about “not acting like a chump” and more about the sort of constant psycho-warfare that some people insist is necessary. Likewise, I think it’s good if a woman tries to be attractive for her husband, but some people go so far that it’s just ridiculous. People take things within the normal range of human experience and then drag it out to a farce.

    I think many more marriages would be saved by removing women’s unrealistic expectations that they should be madly in love, ecstatically happy, and horny all the time, or else it’s time for the divorce papers.

    YES! This. Like marriage is a carnival instead of a vocation.

  59. That is not really “game” at all

    Like I said, a lot of this is semantics.

  60. It may well be a lie; it’s never easy to tell if a consequentialist is lying.

    Why do (some) women respond to game? I assume because it’s a refreshing change from nutless lefty creeps. And also because just as many women have been corrupted by the consequentialist zeitgeist as have men.

    The arguments against biological determinism are against materialism generally and are beyond the scope of a comment box to address.

  61. Bonald,
    Terrific post. I am a Christian who follows game, but it is obviously true that it is Christians of various persuasions that have been in the trenches in this war. Thanks for the reminder. Fighting for what you believe in is clearly a manly (alpha) trait, but the gaming dudes fight only the skirmishes and they stay out of culture wars.

  62. Why do (some) women respond to game? I assume because it’s a refreshing change from nutless lefty creeps.

    So women like masculine men as opposed to the nutless variety. None of this is biologically determined?

    because just as many women have been corrupted by the consequentialist zeitgeist as have men

    So, the reason the techniques of game, which you do not consider inherently immoral, work is that the modern world has created a group of women who are morally and spiritually impoverished? In another times and place, with women of a different culture, they would fail?

    As part of the rejection of their theory, do you reject the idea that women are sexually hypergamous?

  63. That’s right. “Game” means Roissy, Roosh, Mystery, Bardamu, et al., their method and their outlook and their goal. Why would someone like Dalrock use the word “Game”? It puts him in that company of trash. All your protesting won’t change it. You’re like a Cultural Marxist saying, “It’s all semantics.”

    Stop using the word “Game” which is trivial and juvenile and characteristic of PUA and players and such garbage, and use a grown-up civilized phrase.

  64. Presumably, to describe behavior that is all around grown-up and civilized.

  65. Bonald,

    I’m a socon who reads several manosphere blogs (Athol Kay, Dalrock, etc.).

    I’m also a traditional Christian. Here is how I have reconciled things… (I am just offering it for your consumption – I can’t stick around and talk).

    Here it is:

    Where does the most powerful bonding take place between a man and his wife? In consummation of course. Upon serious reflection, we see that all roads in marriage lead to this. At the very least – assuming that both a husband and wife share godly conversation, reflection and prayer – this “act of marriage” is the ultimate expression and strengthener of the shared love between a husband and wife (for conversation, reflection, and prayer can all accompany this).

    Insofar as I am in Adam, I desire this union for reasons entirely of the flesh. My desire is to consume and to possess – and to satiate my lust (even if I have success in limiting these twisted desires to my wife, both in my external behavior, and to a lesser degree, my inner thought-life). Eros. Insofar as I am a New Man, I desire this union – this conjugal union – that I may participate in one of the greatest and most powerful gifts that God has created, for by it, a husband and wife are made one flesh, and are bound together as one. Agape-driven eros.

    Now, a difficult question (at least is would appear to be, given the early Church Father’s writings about sex): As regards this unique communicative union, how often should one desire to partake? How often should one long to be united in this way? To “converse” in this way? Is this something that we should look forward to? That we should long for? That we should even work towards? This is a complicated matter, because one can find passages in the Scriptures that seem to go both ways (one thinks of the very interesting things said in Song of Solomon, Proverbs, and I Corinthians 7). And again, insofar as we are in Adam, we desire to pursue the pleasures this union allows for the mere purpose of fulfilling our appetites (some Christians – serious theologians – have even proposed that sex is a result of the Fall!) My opinion: Given the Holy Spirit’s re-orientation, why should this union not be pursued as often as the desires and possibilities arise? (to say otherwise would of course be using an argument akin to those made for infrequent communion in the Church).

    Each spouse may indeed work towards effecting this consummation, although, in general, it is the husband who finds himself doing so – and it is he who generally sets the tenor and tone of the relationship. Why should he not, with the help of God, unashamedly pursue it, aiming to pull his wife’s attraction – so that she desires to welcome him in the most trusting and intimate way…? A husband may do this both indirectly, by realizing that everything he says and does is inextricably tied to this potential consummation, and directly, through his clear and assertive advances… he attempts to woo his wife…. to ravish her…. so that she most willingly invites him into her vineyard, to use some Biblical imagery (at the same time if he vigorously pursues this and she makes it clear she is *not* interested or willing, he does not mope or whine but simply asks God that He would be content and thankful for all those gifts He has already received – even as he attempts to do what he can to effect change).

    This highly sought-after and one-flesh union not only binds the two into one and has meaning as regards this life, but also the life to come: it is powerful – not only in that it binds two into one and bears real, procreative fruit – but also in that it is one of the most vivid signs that we have of both the nature of the church and the event of the final consummation to come. When we speak of a man and his wife we speak of Christ and His bride, the Church – for this is the true marriage to which this “sacramental union” points towards. And just as nothing binds two people together more than this intimate act of finality, nothing will ultimately bind God and His people together more than that consummation that will occur on the Last Day, when the final fruits of Jesus’ death and resurrection are realized. There will be a great wedding feast – the final great union and fulfilled anticipation for all who believe. At the same time, while marriage may point to this feast in a sense, it is the Lord’s Supper that is an even greater sign and symbol of the marriage feast that is to come. There is a danger here: though the Lord’s Supper is the greater sign and symbol – and also involves its own flesh and blood reality – to our Old Man it seems to pale in compared to the more highly sensual (and almost overwhelming) act of marital consummation. We mark this danger – noting that this may be a reason why reflections like this one are uncommon – and go on to affirm that marital consummation is nonetheless a real sign of the final consummation, when the oneness of the Lord and His bride will be most fully realized.

    Can this final consummation become the most important thing that a Christian – particularly a Christian man – looks forward to? Without a doubt, the greatest sign of this final consummation – the greatest Promise – is the Lord’s very body and blood that He gives us in His Supper. That the eyes of our heart would continually be opened to this amazing reality! And yet, even as we fail to see and experience this as vividly as we should, any man, regardless of the maturity of his faith, will not fail to have an amazing experience of divine favor when he lays with his wife. And again – is it possible that for him this sign, as wonderful and as glorious as it is, can only pale in comparison to that greater reality towards which it points him -an eternity with our Lord? In truth, what greater thing could we work towards? What greater thing could we long for? What greater thing could we pursue? The overwhelming greatness, pleasure and power of the act of marriage are only a foretaste of the feast to come.

    But even here – God’s Kingdom comes without our prayer… It is He who pursues us! He is the One who really longs for us, His bride! He is the One who works – who is working all things for the good, leading up to the end. It is not we who pursue or try to effect the end – to bring about consummation – but He who does this. It is He who works all in all, and we can only reject His subtle and not-so-subtle advances. He will not be tamed as He does all that is necessary to protect, treasure, win, ravish and woo us. This includes crushing those other “lovers” who would lovelessly use us for their own empty purposes, that we may be His forever.

    And we are moved to sing of this great love – from this great Lover.

    That He might have us forever… for we are His.

    Come Lord Jesus indeed!

  66. […] https://bonald.wordpress.com/2011/11/20/pile-up-on-social-conservatives/ I’ve said many times that any alliance between the MRM and genuine conservatives would be a one-sided affair; we would be expected to prioritize their goals, while they would continue attacking us with abandon. This has been confirmed with abundance in the past week, during which numerous members of the “manosphere” have launched fresh attacks on traditionalism and social conservatism. … These are all writers whose works I admire, original and insightful thinkers who have provided important witness to forgotten truths, and the sudden attack from all of them is rather stunning. … […]

  67. ‘the only live societal possibility left on the table is social conservatism, the problem, of course, being that it is maladapted to the present dysfunctional feminism-saturated culture. The one distant possibility would be some form of social conservatism “with teeth” – which would have to not only dismantle biased legal structures, but also initiate a cultural sea change regarding expectations and acceptability of gendered behavior – but there is little political or cultural will to enact such a program.’

    I think there is plenty of cultural will-power building up for social conservatism with teeth.

    However,the people who are really planning to do something about it, who live in the USA, are forced to keep their heads down and to pretend that they are apolitical. If they stand up, they become targets – and some of them simply cannot jeopardize everything for such a gesture.

    Conversely, in places like Singapore, the order of the day is already social conservatism with teeth – not a Christian conservatism, but rather a Confucian conservatism. Time will tell whether Singapore can breed enough citizens to replace demographic burnout.

  68. ‘As Saint Thomas says, a morally licit act must be licit by object, by intention, and by circumstances. ‘

    Before “Game” was called “Game,” I was taught to conduct myself in a manner that indicated decisiveness, initiative, etc. In short, I was taught to act “like an alpha.”

    Many old-fashioned men were taught to present themselves in this way. There is no need to call it “Game.” The object of such displays is not to be a calculating and manipulative fake: the object is to build up a habit of excellence. The object is to be one who leads when it is necessary to lead, one who acts when it is necessary to act.

  69. On that we can all agree.

    I honestly think the absurd PUA game will fall, eventually, as feminism falls. It’s a reaction to feminism, and nihilists like Roissy are trying to throw the pendulum too far in the other direction. After a few swings, the period will diminish, and hopefully the world will come back to normalcy, and men will act like men, and women will act like women, and we’ll have the same manageable level of silliness between the sexes that was common for most of Christendom’s history.

    Though, honestly, impending socio-economic collapse will probably do this far faster than the PUA/MRM crowd; feminism is a luxury afforded by modern prosperity.

  70. What political or cultural movement in the past half-century has been motivated by their ideas? The central fact that our slanderers will not mention is that the only resistance to feminism in the past century has been from religious, i.e. social, conservatives/…without the Catholic Church and the Protestants who get called “puritan” or “fundamentalist”, there would be no Right, no opposition to feminism, anywhere in the West

    Well said. Churches have blown it here and there, individually, but on the whole, without us there’d be no resistance. The attack on So-Cons by the Gamers on us is somewhat mystifying.

    CL has been…. coming close to blaming all male unchastity on wives who won’t put out enough

    There’s probably a large grain of truth to this. 1st Cor 7 spells it out quite plainly: Don’t deprive one another, except by common agreement for a time of fasting and prayer, and then come together again, lest Satan tempt you. Couldn’t be more clear. Of course it can go either way but much more often than not, it’s the wife who is the sexual refuser.

    youngish men… feel betrayed by their elders who, in their view, fed them a lot of mis-information about female sexuality that got them tons of rejection from young women, while those same young women were lining up for the type of guys that they were told women did not like. That experience will do a fast job of producing bitterness

    Quite. Although at 48 I’m no longer “youngish”, I had the same experience in my single years. I learned the hard way, on my own and long before I ever heard of “game”, that the tenets of what is now called “game theory”, are, tragically, mainly true.

    Most of the romantic advice young, single men get from family, church, and female friends, revolves around improving their compatibility, and is often accurate in that regard. BUT.. attraction is not compatibility — and all the compatibility in the world will not get you a relationship unless attraction is there first.

  71. As for male sexual sins, biblical exegesis aside, the reasons for the grave wickedness of onanism are not hard to grasp

    Oh, dude, that was a really bad pun… onanism…. hard to grasp…. heh heh heh /beavis laugh>

  72. ‘The attack on So-Cons by the Gamers on us is somewhat mystifying.’

    I think the key is Bill Bennett. If (e.g.) an ex-SoCOn held respect for Bill Bennett in younger days, then, when that ex-SoCon became disaffected with Bill Bennett, that ex-SoCon might start to blame Bill Bennett for lots of things over which Bill Bennett has no influence.

    Thus when that ex-SoCon looks at Bonald, that ex-SoCon might see a man who idolizes Bill Bennett and Kay Hymowitz.

    I think the attackers are projecting. Imagine an ex-smoker who is so fanatically anti-tobacco that he sees tobacco’s sinful influence everywhere, even where there is no tobacco use.

  73. “It seems that the antifeminist blogosphere wants SoCons out.”

    Some do. Most don’t. It would be nice, though, if SoCons would do two things: (1) refrain from giving a critique of society that reduces to a critique of men. Realize that criticism of women is also necessary for those who want to get a handle on modernity. (2) Stop attacking game by vague associations. The quality of argument from SoCons is very low here, because so many different things are conflated under the label “game.” Don’t attack game for nihilism, attack Roissy for nihilism. Recognize that the term game encompasses a great diversity of thought and practice, and admit the distinctions.

    That said, many of the attacks on SoCons on game blogs are indeed stupid. Dalrock’s position is defensible, though, though his dander is up these days, so SoCons will find his posts bitter pills to swallow, but they will benefit from the medicine

  74. Simply because social conservatives don’t criticize women in the manner of men’s right’s activism doesn’t mean that they put them on a huge pedestal. Very few commenters here who have targeted game are talking about “vague associations”. Various individuals are not benefiting from Dalrock’s medicine and if anything he’s driving them away. Bonald has observed correctly. Once again like the alliance between libertarians/classical liberals/neoconservatives and traditional conservatives the fate below will be replicated with MRA’s:

    I’ve said many times that any alliance between the MRM and genuine conservatives would be a one-sided affair; we would be expected to prioritize their goals, while they would continue attacking us with abandon.

    It’s ironic. Feminists accuse traditional conservatives of being women haters. Men’s rights accuse traditional conservatives of being women pedestalizers. Go figure.

  75. bonald, here is something you might find interesting. It seems that an MRA has decided that churches are a great place for Game, a great place to get laid. See Sunday Morning Nightclub. Then he went out and tried it and got laid quickly. See Molly Is Very Religious In Bed. My opinion is that any religion that doesn’t separate men and women is worthless.

  76. […] some extent that the mandrosphere gets a lot of its chest-thumping bravado[1] from the fact that it stands on the shoulders of traditional conservatives[1], having (unlike traditional Christianity) never faced any real test of mettle in the center of […]

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