I Tried to Be a Misogynist
Coughing Up The Red Pill
This is a really long essay, though thankfully not as long as its first draft would have been. I’ve broken it into 4 much more digestible sections, though, that should be easier to read if one huge document is too much:
I took way too long in writing this essay. It’s been on the back burner for a few years, and when I finally looked at it again, I found it a very good idea to shorten it considerably, and not just because of laziness. I’d initially intended it to be a very long, introspective piece about why I initially fell into the misogynist/right-wing morass and how I got out, but the more I thought about it, the more I figured my “personal story” wouldn’t be that interesting. That, and also it’s been so long that I barely remember why I even got into that scene in the first place. As you’ll see, I had to make extensive use of the Wayback Machine to recollect some of my sources, and since I never had a manosphere blog, the only evidence of how I thought in my earlier, dumber days comes from my memories, which have faded over the course of over a decade. What’s much more important, however, is a focused and concise explanation of not primarily how but *why* I left that scene.
Like I implied above, I have only old memories of how I fell into that crap in the first place, though looking it up, I think it was also related to the reasons I fell into the right-wing, ‘anti-SJW’ scene when I was younger. That was in the mid 00s, my flirtation with the manosphere was in the late 00s and early 10s. My uni had (to put it mildly) a significant hard-left community; I could walk around and see posters advertising weird presentations on “radical witches,” and online in various communities (videogame related and not) I often saw a lot of flame wars and drama revolving around feminism and gender politics. It didn’t help that more than a few of my good male friends hadn’t had the most positive experiences with women, either romantically or professionally.
Thus, at that point in my life I was pretty receptive to general manosphere messaging. “Relationships seem like a drag? Screw ‘em, you don’t need one! Feminism and feminists look looney? Bro, we’ve got all the answers, we know it’s all a load of hooey, and more than that too! Have problems in your life? Feminists are ruining government, the economy, everything! Come join us, bro, just read our blogs and maybe make one of your own and YOU can be part of Taking Back Our Culture and Winning the Gender Wars!”
Thankfully, I never bothered with the second part of that, making a specifically manosphere blog. As I’ve said before, my involvement with that scene was primarily devouring the content of other blogs, and occasionally dropping snippets of “red-pills” on my own blog (Livejournal, at the time, IIRC) and in conversation with friends online and offline. However, a funny thing happened. The more I read of manosphere blogs—and like I said, I read very extensively, from Roissy to Kid Strangelove to the hardest of the hardcore MGTOW forums—the more I started to notice that what they said wasn’t internally consistent. I don’t mean just individual bloggers having beefs or disagreeing with each other, I mean that the prevailing ideologies—and they were ideologies, not “praxeologies” or whatever they might call it—required you to believe two things that couldn’t both be true. I also noticed that more than a few of my erstwhile “comrades” were very far from living up to their own ideals, and indeed, seemed to cause themselves a whole lot more trouble than any feminist ever did or even could. And most importantly of all, I noticed that other manospherians, including some very prominent ones in that scene like Pook, had came to these same conclusions, and were leaving because of it. All these factors led to me following the same path, and where I am now—ironically enough, not only having abjured misogyny and gained an appreciation for feminism, but somewhat on the political left, but not because I’m a “mangina” desperate to curry favor for women, but simply because “feminism” and left-wing policies offer more benefit and less threat to me than drama-filled, psychotic manospherians. The next sections of this essay will provide the evidence I gleaned, over a span of several years, to support these conclusions.
To begin with, a brief overview of terms: Manosphere = The collection of blogs and websites generally dedicated to opposing feminism in some form, I don’t use the term to refer to the loose collection of men’s interest blogs and sites generally.
Manospambot: This derisive term’s been floating around for a long time to poke fun of a lot of manospherians, who are often both repetitive and hilariously/superlatively angry about things they probably shouldn’t be.
MGTOW: “Men Going Their Own Way,” ostensibly guys who just aren’t interested in relationships and focused on being happy bachelors, but as I’ve written before and will expound on here, there’s way more anger, drama, and general nonsense prevalent in that scene than you’d expect if they were just a group of chill bachelors.
PUA: Pick-Up Artists, guys dedicated to scoring with as many girls as possible.
Red-Pill: The collection of beliefs ostensibly suppressed by society which proves that men and women are not only physically and psychologically different but also that feminism ruins societies, women need to be oppressed for the maintenance of civilization, and so on, and so forth.
Hypergamy: The supposed tendency of women to “date up,” but as we’ll see, manospherians seem to be unable to decide on what “up” actually means.
I: Failure to live up to their own ideals
Manospherians generally believe two things. The first is that men are better than women in every sense—intellectually, morally, physically, and so on. The second is that manospherians themselves are richer, better-looking, more masculine, etc. than all the “blue-pilled simps” or whatever.
The moral element is what I want to focus on first in particular. It’s essentially a manospambot article of faith that women are “amoral” because they did absolutely nothing throughout history except sit around and plop out babies, whereas men needed to evolve honor, altruism, etc. because we were the ones who hunted and so on. And old entry from Roissy has a quote straight from the horse’s mouth, and no further evidence is needed though you can find plenty if you look—this is just a manosphere article of faith, really.
“Women as a whole are more coldly calculating than men, and the worst of them can challenge the top 1% of sociopathic alpha males for deceitfulness and cavalier betrayal. It is the prerogative of women that practical concerns, and how to achieve them, dominate their thinking and catalyze their emotions. They are the ones stuck with nine month pregnancies. Morality was codified by men; amorality perfected by women. And no one is more versed in justifying and rationalizing their own shitty behavior than a woman.”
By the same token, manospherians and mgtows often complained that women brought nothing but drama to communities while primarily or only-male groups were peaceful nests of camaderie, brotherhood, good feelings, and efficiency. I used to believe this myself; my old friends (and enemies) could tell you I spouted this sort of stuff a lot when I was younger. You can find the most extreme version of this worldview in the “Bob’s Truth” blog, in the hypothetical about what would happen if all women disappear (spoilers: Men invent the artificial womb and create a utopia!):
Here’s the problem, though: As I lurked on various manosphere blogs and websites over the years, I saw that manospambots themselves never—never—demonstrated honor, honesty, camaderie, and all that other stuff themselves. I constantly, incessantly, non-stop witnessed the sort of drama, pettiness, cattiness, and betrayal manosphere drones claimed was the exclusive province of women. I’ll describe a few—just a few—of the examples I’ve seen over the years.
A: Drama and bullshit
The first big blowup that really comes to my mind was in 2013. In 2010 or thereabouts, the MGTOW faction of the manosphere, which I’ve described before, had a sizeable presence on Reddit and other places, but one of their biggest strongholds were the MGTOW forums, run by a guy named Nacho Vidal. They were big, they were active, and most importantly, many of their members had actually paid a decent bit of change to pay for its server hosting. You’d think a community of all guys, none of whom were “manginas” or liked women much at all, would be full of camaraderie, good times, honor between members, and all that, right? Nah. One day, Nacho Vidal just up and shut down the MGTOW forums, no warning, certainly no refunds to the donators, nothing. Various “competitors,” including A Voice for Men and the Red Pill subreddit, promptly jumped on him and the MGTOW forums. He’d left a nasty message explaining why he did it, shitting on pretty much everyone who’d supported him over the years:
Now, before I say anything else, even at the time I was starting to consider that Mr. Vidal had a point when he dismissed MGTOWs as “a successful concept for incels and psychos.” I’ll get into that in the next sub-section, but even when the MGTOW forums were still up, I could tell it was mostly bitching about women, often in completely unhinged ways, which kinda contradicted the whole “we’re Going Our Own Way and don’t even care about women!” feel they tried to give off. But more immediately, all the drama made started making me think about whether or not men, or at least manospherians, actually were any “morally” better than feminists and/or women in general. Like I said, Nacho essentially stole from all the people who contributed to him—even if the community was cancerous, and it was, you’d expect “male honor” would give his fans (and donators) some advance notice. And even more than that, think about the obvious delight of other manospherians at their fellow traveler’s misfortune—look at the links posted above. The AVFM guys and the Red Pill reddit guys both gloating about how they totally knew this was gonna happen. It seemed to me like ‘brotherhood’ wasn’t actually one of the manosphere’s strong suits.
Similar drama occurred a few years later in MGTOWland, btw—in 2017, another famous MGTOW (barbarossaaa)’s site went down, and another MGTOW gloated about its misfortune, saying that ol’ Bar Bar wasn’t a “true” MGTOW and so on:
So yeah, yet another instance of a bunch of guys supposedly “going their own way,” and supposedly enjoying drama-free camaraderie with their fellow men, falling over each other and kicking another one when he was down because of differences in MGTOW ideology, which supposedly shouldn’t exist at all. And it gets even worse—there was a lot of doxing and accusations flying around that whole scene. One example:
Bar Bar and some other MGTOWs got doxed, they blamed it on AVFM, AVFM blamed it on others, like a guy named Tim Shmiggen, and the wheel of accusations went round and round. I don’t know what the truth of it was, and I don’t care—that these kinds of accusations were even flying around the manosphere in the first place illustrates what a toxic scene it was. Remember, these guys complain constantly about women falsely accusing men (of rape, or just about anything), being dishonest and spiteful, causing drama, and all that. But here we have a bunch of the Manliest Men Around acting like contentious, backbiting vipers. Speaking as a man who’s not inclined to white-knighting for women: Why would I want to be a part of this? Speaking to the men in my audience who feel the same: Why would *you* want to be a part of this? What benefit could it bring us? Purely as a matter of self-interest, if the manosphere scene is at least—at least—as prone to drama, doxing, and infighting as the feminists seem to be, isn’t it a good idea to avoid them as well? Seeing stuff like this moved me closer and closer to that position by the mid 10s at the latest, as far as I can recall.
It gets grosser too, I should note. See this article:
It touches upon a subject I’ll get to at the end of this section as well, but the tl;dr is that a Men’s Rights conference ended up attracting at least one, and from what I’ve heard more, absolute weirdos and creeps. Again, as a straight guy, why would I want to join the manosphere if it’s got a bunch of weird predators who just want to molest other men? Absolute nonsense, and again it’s the manospherians who say they’re the honorable and moral ones. I suppose some of ‘em might point out that being on the left, I have nothing against gay guys, and that’s true—what I *do* dislike is creepy molestation. What a surprise, all the gay folks I’ve met since joining “the left” have respected me when I told them I wasn’t interested, unlike the absolute weirdos such as the conferencegoer in this article and the other loons we’ll meet later on in the essay you’re reading right now.
The list goes on and on, far outside AVFM, by the way. Accusations of fraud and plagiarism are pretty common, then and now. For instance, Mike Cernovich (who from what I hear is now just a general MAGA grifter) accused another big manosphere personality at the time, Tucker Max, of ripping off his content:
Even more recently, in 2019, another manosphere “convention” got bogged down in drama between some of its speakers, Rollo Tomassi and some other guys:
He might have acted pretty nice at the time, but things got ugly very quickly indeed:
Look through the comments—either Mr. Johnson was falsely accusing Rollo, or Rollo invited someone he shouldn’t have—and either way, yet again, the question arises: Why get involved with this shit? What benefit does it offer me as a man? Why shouldn’t I just do my own thing without associating with “anti-feminists” who don’t seem to be able to organize as much as a popsicle stand without blowing themselves up?
More than anything else, though, the Mark Minter saga from the early 10s really helped me shake off the manosphere indoctrination. Minter was a prolific commenter on sites like the Rational Male, acquiring a following for his endless screeds against marriage and women. An old Tao of Dirt post—and remember, this was another manosphere site that opposed feminism, thought feminists were “slores” and all that—described how Minter’s anti-marriage vitriol was too much even for him, but had gained a popular following on other sites:
“No one knows for sure who this guy is, but his comments have gotten alot of attention and have spawned numerous reprints and even a thread over at Roosh’s”
But, naturally, Minter’s star would fall in the manosphere, as they all eventually do. In 2013, he revealed he was marrying a single mom (an absolute cardinal sin among the manospherians) on Roissy’s blog, which absolutely cratered his reputation among his many followers and led to most of them feeling utterly betrayed:
“I hope his name will forever be synonymous with a man who doesn’t live by his own code. He deserves to be permanently exiled from the manosphere community. No more praise or compliments should be directed his way.”
The drama didn’t stop there, as arguments about Minter led to problems and friendships breaking up across the manosphere; for instance another blogger named xsplat got banned from Roosh’s forums for pointing out how utterly pathetic the issue made absolutely everyone involved look:
“Here are my comments from an RVF thread about it. My comments got me a 7 day ban there, but more surprisingly got Pitt a 1day ban. The thread was also locked right after the bans came down. I can only assume Pitts ban was for disagreeing with the moderators viewpoint. You can read the whole thread if you want to read them in context.”
Even in my manosphere-sympathetic phase I thought Minter was a little too extreme, but watching the scene blow up about him, yet again, made me reconsider my views. A manosphere “guru” turned out to be a raging hypocrite? His fans, including guys like Rollo and Roosh, who were supposed to be smarter, more rational, etc. etc. etc. than all the “manginas” and of course women and feminists, fell for him entirely? That got me thinking—maybe they were all wrong. Maybe it was all BS. If a joker like Minter could get so much acclaim and then blow it up in such a short span of time, maybe there wasn’t much “wisdom” to be found in the manosphere at all. And it wasn’t just me, a lot of other guys at this time were figuring out how dumb it all was. Some more choice quotes:
“The homo-paranoia and unmasculine fear that women are somehow taking over America as frantically perpetuated by RV forumers is laughable. But what is most revealing about Roosh is his banning of xsplat in the Minter thread. The forum gets its ass handed to them by xsplat and what do those fear mongers do? They ban xsplat and close the thread because Roosh worshipped Minter and xsplat had the balls to make him eat crow on the subject of Minter’s decision to get married. Now Roosh has gone radio silent again on the subject of the book “The Way of Men,” a book he was touting as The Holy Grail of the Manosphere until it was recently revealed it was written by a gay man. The anti-gay, all knowing, King Roosh is now having difficulty explaining how he keeps falling for the philosophies of married men and gays. Next he’ll be peddling Susan Faludi’s “Stiffed: The Betrayal of The American Man.” Lol. Can’t wait for that one.”
“As everyone in the sphere knows by now, Mark Minter is shacking up with that chick who habitually bombed comment threads everywhere. I could care less about his decision other than it shows that desperate dudes will fold every time at a whiff of vagina. Other than that, good luck have fun.
What I find more fascinating is that Minter, that most vociferous manospambot, who rivaled deti, vicomte, earl, and half of Dalrock’s unfortunately bad commentariat in prolific bot-ness, was outed as a true basement dweller. It serves as a good reminder for everyone on how many commenters are shit in real life and just how messed up the vast majority of passionate, FUCK MARRIAGE, FUCK AMERICAN GIRLS, HYPERGAMY, MGTOW ARRRGH!!! bots are.
You never know who is behind that screen, but chances are if they’re taking an extreme position that deals in absolutes and blanket statements, they’re probably some angry fatass with nothing to offer to you. That’s the truth, fuck off with your “shaming language” crap. People who have experience and know what they’re talking about rarely, if ever, talk like that because they know a) there are exceptions b) they haven’t seen everything in the world and c) the most knowledgeable people in any field are the first to admit a) and b).”
Couldn’t find much to argue with in that quote—and again, the ‘Fly Fresh and Young” guys were pretty big in the manosphere at the time. But Minter’s example was revealing on a personal as well as a social level. His example, and more than a few others, illustrated yet another inconsistency in the manosphere’s projected image: Namely, how pathetic, unfit, and maladjusted the members themselves, as individuals, tended to be.
B: General pathetic-ness
As I mentioned at the beginning of this section, manospherians in general tend to think of themselves as better than other men. This is partially because manosphere ideology in theory encourages you to get fit, make money, become socially adept, and so on, but it’s also because these guys believe they’re “redpilled” and possess knowledge all other pathetic, less-masculine “mangina” men don’t have. Now, the PUA types judge their worth on their attractiveness to women, while MGTOWs, who supposedly abjure women entirely, claim that other manospherians are just “dancing monkeys” who still “serve the pussy” or whatever, and claim to be superior based on different criteria. See this screed from a remaining MGTOW site, goingyourownway:
Let’s look at this guy’s definition of “actual value,” and keep in mind most MGTOWs, and most manospherians in general too for that matter, think they possess these traits:
-Actually means what he says
-Respects himself; respects others
-Has future orientation. Actually saves money.
-Good Judgment.Generally right about things and decisions he makes.
-Any of the following: Benevolent, Calm, Cheerful, Dignified, Disciplined,Dynamic, Enthusiastic, Focused, Genuine, Honorable, Friendly,Fun-loving, Kind, Principled, Purposeful, Secure, Warm,Humble.
– A sense of quality and taste in things that matter, a sense of humor, depth
– Any of the following: Active, Adaptable, Adventurous, Appreciative, Athletic,Clever, Confident, Conscientious, Creative, Daring, Decisive,Dedicated, Deep, Freethinking, Hardworking, Imaginative, Incisive,Organized, Original, Wise.
-Actual knowledge and skill that is applied whether towards interests,hobbies, work. Has passions and pursues them.”
Let’s look back at some of the examples we’ve just been discussing. Was Nacho Vidal “high actual value?” I dunno about his intelligence, but by his own admission he didn’t have good judgement and he apparently wasn’t trustworthy, given how he screwed over his own donators. Even more than that, was Mark Minter “high actual value?” No, for the same reasons. In fact, he didn’t even fulfill the “future orientation” criteria in terms of money, as people mentioned in the links I provided above, he was pretty poor and arguably got married to utilize his bride’s family’s money.
This was a manosphere “guru” who so many had puffed up before he “betrayed” them? That made me think there was more than a little hypocrisy to be found in that scene—these guys went on and on about how high-value they were, whether in terms of sexual attractiveness or intellectual or economic accomplishment, yet they turned out to be nobodies. And I certainly wasn’t the only one to notice this. 3 Bromigos was a pretty big manosphere site back in the day, and a guy there made the same point.
“When I was first introduced to the “manosphere”, I thought that everyone would be like me: striving for excellence and hell-bent on self improvement. The more I’ve been around, the more I’ve realised that the whole thing is a facade.
It’s a bitter place, mostly written by bitter guys. Retelling stories of “being alpha” and an asshole to girls is a front for the bitterness most feel at the hands of our opposite gender. Mostly due to not being successful with good looking girls. This sounds like a trivial and cliche attack you’d expect from a girl who’s stumbled upon the “manosphere”, but it’s true. There are very few legit people whose lifestyles match those of which they’re talking about.
I wrote in a post a while back that we have connections to some of the “bigger” people on this side of the internet, and I know stories about some of the guys you lot idolise that would instantly make you stop reading their blogs.
I’ve seen pictures of some of the people writing in the “manosphere” and I thought to myself, why the hell would I listen to this person for advice? Some of the guys’ pictures are out in the open, some have been seen by accident and some I’ve seen without their knowledge through the connections we have.
It’s really opened my eyes. Some of the most well known guys on here are absolute losers, but their writing is good and they get a lot of attention because of it. What can these guys teach me? Honestly? Nothing.
They can’t teach me about style, they can’t teach me about having sex with beautiful women and they can’t teach me about how to earn lots of money. Why? Because they’ve done none of it themselves.”
In addition to this, the MGTOWs themselves turned out to be pretty pathetic, despite their pretensions of being “high actual value.” I dunno what kinda guy Jagrmeister was, and maybe Nacho Vidal was successful in his personal life, but from what I’ve gathered, no self-proclaimed MGTOW who wandered out into the wild looked like somebody worthy of emulation. Again, a few years ago there was a big MGTOW on youtube named Sandman who once went to a “slutwalk” to make fun of it. His friends on /pol/ found a picture of him at the thing—he was in the right place judging by the perspective from his video on the subject—and he turned out to be a pasty, chubby dweeb (https://archive.4plebs.org/pol/thread/37831448/#37831448 ). /pol/ not a reliable source? Yeah, fair enough, but then we have the infamous MGTOW trashbag guy:
The footage was taken straight from a (sympathetic) interview by Lauren Southern. I’m sorry, but there’s no way you’re convincing me that this guy isn’t a giant loser. He sure as hell doesn’t seem “high actual value.” Again, MGTOWs keep comparing themselves to interesting, accomplished guys and sometimes even superheroes like Batman or Han Solo (like this fella on Deviantart did: https://archive.is/FmH6V , also see the image here https://archive.is/SskUR) but they show up in real life and look like flabbier versions of Homer Simpson. If they were such hypocrites when it came to their personal presentation and accomplishments, I started to wonder if they were trustworthy when it came to anything else. Why should I believe some guy screaming about the evils of feminism and the inferiority of women if he was straight-up lying about how intelligent and accomplished he was IRL? If even other guys in the manosphere, like the above-quoted 3 bromigos, were starting to see how many fakers were in the scene, maybe more than a bit of skepticism was warranted towards all of it.
Further reading from the manosphere itself helped me understand why the scene lent itself too well to all the fakers, posers, and losers, and why so many of the guys who helped build it up were abandoning it—which told me I should do the same as well. Foreshadowing a larger point I’ll make in in the next paragraphs, the very nature of the manosphere encourages bitterness, misery, and general negativity and actively discourages self-improvement, despite what it says. 30 Days to X put it extremely well and succinctly:
“Any man who does even a modicum of what the manosphere preaches, i.e. lifting weights and improving themselves, would be too busy growing as a person and reaping the rewards of hard work to complain about what’s going on in the latest Jezebel article.”
Think about it: If you’re a successful man who’s making money, would you be complaining about how feminism is “oppressing” you? No, because you’re a winner, not oppressed. If you’ve got a good life, you’re not going to sit around grousing about women (or any other group, for that matter), as yet another old manosphere site, Embrace the Hunt, mentioned:
“I generally do not interact with much of the manosphere because I never had a taste for the bitterness that has been a mainstay for much of it. Only lately has this risen to the critical levels that has caused it to invade and infect my consciousness. The problem is that I am just not unhappy enough for that noise; my life is too good.”
Same thing another manosphere guy noticed:
“I mean, we’re supposed to be all about self-improvement, right? Last time I checked, self-improvement doesn’t involve being a bitter and whiny little bitch.
Just lay off the “FEMINISM SUX, AMIRITE?!?” articles for a while and focus on improving yourself.
Externalities do not control your life.
A commenter named Jim on another site, absoluteability, noticed it too:
“I don’t read the manosphere anymore because it seems like every other article is, either blatantly or subtly, proclaiming that whites are superior/insulting other races.
I don’t think many of them get laid at all. They come off as frustrated, lonely dudes that need to shit on others to make themselves feel like they are better than they are.
And I say this from experience. When I sucked at life, every little thing seemed like an affront to my core and resulted in intense emotional reactions.”
A PUA who went by Thumpy, and I’ll be quoting him a lot throughout, also made a great point about how the manosphere drags one down:
“Look, it’s fine to wake up one day and realize you’re a weak-ass chump. Lots of guys do it. The key difference is that you should start effecting change at a rather rapid pace once that realization has dick-slapped you across the face. If you’re still a bitter beta a year later, or heaven forbid 2, 3, 5, 10 years later… you ain’t ever gonna change. You are a permanent beta chump living in a world that no longer has any respect or need for beta chumps.
If that’s the case, quit blogging. Quit whining. Accept yourself and move to Alaska to be alone and enjoy the beautiful scenery there. I’m waiting for the day when MGTOW truly and permanently GTOW rather than just threaten to.”
Kid Strangelove, yet again, also described how the incessant negativity of the manosphere was starting to creep into his actual life, also touching on a subject we’ll return to quite soon, the prevalence of weirdo conspiracy theories in the scene:
“And I couldn’t stop these thoughts, it was as if I was primed to spit them out. It didn’t matter that my business partner and I are working on a side project that is weeks away from launch, it didn’t matter that I met some really cool girls over the weekend, it didn’t even matter that a giant group of my friends came out to celebrate my birthday and showed me a tremendous amount of love, none if it mattered, I just could not shake that feeling.
So I did what I always do – try to distract myself with some media.
And then it hit me – the media are enablers. Especially the manosphere.
Here are some of the articles available:
Look at this “blue pill” fag destroying his life. Lets laugh at him
Lol, women and men are different amirite?
I’m a winnerrrrr, you’re a lozerrrr, hahaha
Fat People are fat!
I fucked a HB90 because I’m a winner with game! Swag, swag, woop!
Considering I also like to read “non mainstream” political coverage because the mainstream media is hot garbage, you can also add:
Jews are ruining the world
Muslims are ruining the world
Black people are ruining the world
Every government official is listening in on everything you are doing.
To sum up all the media I consume – “Life sucks, deal with it or kill yourself.”
Naturally, he chose to start consuming other media—and at this point, I figured that would be a good choice for me too. My life was actually pretty good, even at a university with a sizable lefty contingent. Weird stuff like talks on “radical witches” didn’t affect me at all. Every woman I actually interacted with in my own department was nice to me and had a vested interest in my success, in fact one went out of my way to help me. In other words, I was living not in a fantasy world but a nightmare world, one which was far worse than reality. Abandoning the manosphere and its bitterness made logical, practical sense, and abandoning misogyny in general, as I’ve mentioned before ( https://gunlord500.wordpress.com/2014/05/27/giving-up-on-misogyny/) also made quite a bit of sense. So that’s what I did—no “simping” involved.
Now, some manospherians—maybe some MGTOWs, and maybe some incels—might tell me that negativity is necessary for whatever reason—reminding unfortunate men of how to “avoid women” and fight off their natural urges or something. As it happened, in my journey out of the manosphere I found a lot of good critiques of that way of thinking as well, particularly from black manospherians, whose jaded perspective on the racism and other weird conspiracy crap taking hold of it (again, we’ll get back to this soon) helped me quite a bit. As one guy, Black Man Red Pill, mentioned,
“I can be pissed at women and a lot of their bullshit rationalizations. However, I can’t hate them. To me focusing on something you hate is a waste of energy. If you hate women so much, then why blog about them, and how to sleep with them. Why not post about a hobby or something?”
This is the same point I’ve raised about MGTOW before—like I said (https://gunlord500.wordpress.com/2013/10/04/why-im-not-a-mgtow/), why do I need an acronym to chill out and do my own thing? Another guy, Chase Amante—one of the “game” types, so not some kind of “mangina” or “simp” or whatever also thought so, while pointing out why the term itself had become so toxic:
“So far as I can tell, branding yourself a MGTOW is just another way to say you are a ‘loner’ or ‘independent’ or to proclaim you “don’t need anyone!”
You go your own way. You’re not trying to fit into the crowd. You don’t care about conforming to social norms. You do your own thing.
When I was young we just called guys like this loners.
Now I guess they’re called ‘MGTOW.’ I guess that way they can feel a sense of belonging? We’re all MGTOWs and now we can commiserate over girls or dating or what have you.
I suppose it’s different for everyone, but for me the term ‘MGTOW’ is irrevocably tied to sexually frustrated men filled with bitterness toward the opposite sex.
I realize there are plenty of MGTOWs who aren’t that way, but the ones who are are so vocal it’s hard to not get that picture stamped in your mind without spending a ton of time socializing with MGTOWs, studying them, or otherwise inserting yourself into the nuances of MGTOW cultural stratification.”
The whole MGTOW scene itself was (and is) just generally prone to attract scammers and other ne’er do wells, for reasons I described here:
“It seems to me a lot of weird drama and cult nonsense starts out with a good idea–in this case, “focus on yourself, it’s OK to be single, and base your self-worth on things other than external validation.” It’s when people start trying to make themselves “leaders” and make money off of it that it gets cancerous. Wouldn’t it be an easy way to scam people? When some guy starts saying, “Hey, men! You need to think for yourself and make your own value! That’s why you need to donate to my forums and buy my books!” isn’t that suspicious? When stuff like that starts to happen, you have self-appointed gurus more interested in self-aggrandizement and making money instead of actually going their own way.
This is why MGTOWs tend to cultivate resentment towards women and “feminism” instead of simple detachment and actually going one’s own way. If a guy actually DOES go his own way and stops caring about women–i.e, he doesn’t even hate them at all, just concentrates on his own interests and happiness–why would he donate to some MGTOW youtuber or buy MGTOW books? He’d spend his time and money on things he actually enjoys instead of some rando’s Patreon or another self-published “Why Women Suck” screed on Amazon. Thus, many MGTOWs have a vested financial interest in ensuring men don’t *actually* go their own way.”
A couple of other guys, some conservative ones, made these observations some time before I did, actually, and I found out about ‘em after doing some research. I have to give them some credit here, namely a guy named Spotsworth:
“Of course the audience for MGTOW is very small. The advocates are helpless and friendless. Don’t believe me? Get into a discussion with them. Join up and be part of the discussion. You’ll soon find yourself in with anti-semitic conspiracy fans, middle aged con artists and spotty youths planning their imaginary adventures.”
As Spotsworth continued to say, genuine MGTOW ideology isn’t really sustainable, at least for an individual, in the long run:
“What happens to these men is that they take girlfriends or they get married. They move on from being bitter bachelors and leave their blogs behind. Even very popular blogs such as Eternal Bachelor suddenly stop. You don’t really think these guys are going to whine about women forever, do you? No, people eventually move on and get on with their lives. MGTOW is simply an Internet reflection of what a small percentage of men go through on their way to settling down with a woman.”
Proof of this, IMO, can be seen in how rabidly those types attack anyone who points this stuff out, and even just doesn’t agree with them entirely. I’ve avoided most of that, though there have been a few MGTOWs in my comment section who made themselves appear pretty dumb. One old-school manosphere guy, Leap of a Beta, made some mild criticisms of MGTOW in passing, and those ended up being his angriest critics:
“I expected to get blasted overwhelmingly by manospambots of the PUA and game persuasion. The reason I had that expectation was because it was an article about Freedom Porn and the lifestyle of a hedonist, for which I primarily associate with PUA’s. I also always thought that most of my lurkers came from the realm of hedonism associated with pleasures of the flesh, but apparently the outspoken ones come from the realm of hedonism that centers their empty pursuits along other lines. Because lets be honest, there’s a great deal more to the Freedom Porn lifestyle than just chasing pussy.
I should have known the MRA and MGTOW’s would read far more into the article than I expected or intended. Using their awesome abilities of projection to completely miss the points I was making and started a short little forum post (link below). Some people there actually agreed with me, and some had intelligent disagreements, but the overall majority read about like this: “Oh, Chad said he wants to come home to some woman every day! He must want to get married, go through divorce rape, never see his 2.1 kids! Lolololzlzlzlolz! YOUNG NEWB! Thaz nawt how da wimmenz work!”
In general, by this point, my friends, I hope you can see why I started moving away from the manosphere in all its aspects—“Red Pill,” MGTOW, all of it—by this point, even before 2015. Hypocritical drama within the community as a whole, hypocrisy on an individual level—out of rational self interest, there was just too much negativity for me to bother with, and I suspect a lot of the people reading this essay, initially sympathetic or not, might feel the same. And if it’s manospherians themselves saying this, not their feminist foes, it’s not too easy to brush off, either. Once again, the guys from the old site “Fly Fresh and Young,” manospherians themselves, offer the best response to anyone claiming you ought to be a manospambot:
“Life is too short as it is, why waste it being a loser?”
True enough—I didn’t want to be a loser, so I ducked out of the manosphere scene before it could get its claws too deeply in me. But there’s something as bad as being a loser, and that’s being a psycho—and the manosphere was full of those too, providing yet another reason for me to GTFO of even association with it.
C: Batshit insanity
I don’t want to spend more time than I have to on this subject because it’s so distasteful, so long story short: When I started to do some more research on what ideologies were common in the manosphere and what many, or at least a significant minority, of its participants believed, I found enough creepy, psychotic pedo garbage to send me running away screaming from that scene. Jay Hammer’s famous essay arguing against the age of consent, now gone but archived on another manosphere blog, which was also put on archive.is, was the most famous:
But let’s just say he wasn’t the only one. There was another guy, “TheAntiFeminist,” who made pretty much his whole career complaining about age of consent laws and defending pedophiles. I’m just gonna link to the Wayback archives and you can read the articles yourself, because just quoting some of his shit would get the FBI on my case:
And of course, it wouldn’t be complete without him defending Epstein:
His blog was a lot more active in the early 10s but the Wayback machine hasn’t archived those as much, so I can’t provide links, but his more recent articles are a pretty good depiction of the kind of crap that horrified me. Look, I’m not even going to get into a debate over “male sexuality” or the age of consent or whatever, but from a purely practical perspective, it’s simply not a good idea to be even remotely associated with this nonsense. I’ve got way better things to do with my time than defend Jeffrey friggin’ Epstein. And again, simply as a practical matter, being associated with people who do might make me look like a creep by association, so there’s absolutely no loss to dump the whole garbage scene. And all these are just examples, you can find plenty more of manospherians generally being freaks. You So Would had to call one out for being a total creep towards young girls:
Another weirdo “masculinist” approved of mass rape, condoning what the Soviets did in Germany following WWII:
There was at least one IRL murderer who hung around a lot on MGTOW sites, along with a lot of racist and psycho nazi-type communities:
Speaking of MGTOWs, watching how those guys behaved on other sites and forums further convinced me manosphere ideology in general and MGTOW in particular was useless. There was one on GameFAQs who frequented some of the Castlevania boards I went to who just behaved so atrociously it made me start thinking whether “Going Your Own Way” actually meant going crazy. You couldn’t have a discussion about CV games with female protagonists (like Order of Ecclesia) without this guy flipping out before he got banned (and eventually came back under a new username):
And of course you can’t forget Elliot Rodgers. I’ve written before how he represented a good chunk of manosphere ideology (https://gunlord500.wordpress.com/2014/05/27/giving-up-on-misogyny/ , also see https://gunlord500.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/misogyny-and-misandry/ for why ironically enough manosphere crap tends to lead to misandry too), but other folks also noted it—this article from Tom Morris is a good rundown:
But yeah, seeing that creepazoid on the news and reading his manifesto which parroted a lot of manosphere talking points was enough to make me think the scene was cancer.
Additionally, there’s also the fact that many manospherians, red-pillers, MGTOWs, etc. don’t just hate women but plenty of other people too. You don’t have to go too far to see them praising Hitler or screaming about how Jews or blacks or whoever are inferior and we need to bring back segregation or whatever. This happened to Roissy, one of the most famous “game/Pick-Up Artist” blogs—I’m not sure if this is true or not, but another one in the scene said his blog had been taken over by a white nationalist:
“the guy who started CH is long gone, it’s supposedly now run by 5-6 writers (which is fine, a few blogs have multiple writers). well, one of the writer’s happens to be wn (white nationalist) by the name of firepower who is one of the primary contributer’s to a wn site. now, i’ve had a few people e-mail me about the “nationalist” posts coming from CH, and i simply tell them the truth. done and done.”
In any case though, you could also see that kind of race nonsense popping up at other places. For instance, see a couple old threads at /r/mgtow blaming DA JOOZ for feminism or SJWism and all that:
As well as a charmer from goingyourownway with a “Happy Merchant” avatar making fun of the Holocaust: https://archive.is/zE5kC
And so on, and so forth. Those are just three examples, but the problem was so bad a ton of other blogs discussed it. Aaron Sleazy and Troy Francis (both members of the ‘seduction’ community) had a couple good posts on the issue. First, Aaron Sleazy, who didn’t write this himself but allowed a guest poster to discuss some issues:
“In reality, Roissy was just another regular DC bar hopper like the DC Bachelor (who later revealed himself to be Roosh), but that didn’t stop him from being completely delusional. In Roissy in DC (now Heartiste), Roissy took the extreme version of evo-psych alpha/beta scare tactics and added a combination of hard-right politics and Steve Sailor racial HBD science. Does this now sound completely incoherent to you? Welcome to the manosphere.
Incoherent is the key word. Roissy, Roosh, and all the subsequent copycat blogs all had a design for life that basically meant acting like an obnoxious, thuggish frat guy. But whenever evidence was presented to them, especially to Roissy, that guys who didn’t act this way also got chicks, the manosphere would backtrack and redefine the definition of alpha from a dominant caveman dude to that of a guy who can score lots of girls, regardless of looks and behavior. The guys who look like pussies and don’t use game but still get laid, therefore, are actually alphas. But these “alphas” are also pussies, Roosh and Roissy said, so you shouldn’t act like them. Act like a dominant caveman.
The anti-feminism and racial politics would garner Roissy and the manosphere a larger audience for a temporary point of time, but it was inevitable that the jumbled game philosophy that was at its core would be its undoing. Although Roissy was not involved in the embarrassing DC meetup, his fingerprints are all over the pathetic thug behavior of all the major players in the post-Roosh/Roissy generation of manosphere bloggers. These guys prioritize the imitation of dominant meathead behaviors over actual success with women. In fact, it’s evident that they have little success at all, but it was surprising just how sloppy and clueless a blog like University of Man could be in blatantly revealing that reality. Generational rot indeed.
The biggest smoking gun, however, was the deflation of the Alpha boogeyman concept. These guys certainly act like super-alphas storming around ready to take your woman, but their results are no better than the average man they abhor so much. In fact, they are probably worse than average, if you took 15 men with no knowledge of game and dropped them into a bar crawling scenario similar to that of the Manosphere DC meetup. Imitation of behaviors can’t invent attraction.
After the the DC Meetup got slammed, the University of Man shut down, and it’s now evident that the manosphere is dying. Let’s look at the evidence:
Roosh has transitioned to a lifestyle blog: returnofkings.com. In his writings, he has continually distanced himself from Roissy and barely believes in game.
Roissy dances in the corner alone. MRAs have disavowed him, and the current generation of gamers doesn’t like his racial politics.
The next generation of manosphere bloggers are realizing the lameness of the cause and are dropping like flies. University of Man is dead. Another blog, Alpha Persona, closed recently.
These quotes from the closing post of Alpha Persona are very telling:
It just isn’t what it used to be anymore, though. A lot of readers are keyboard warriors, a lot of readers are just looking for a place to be angry, and the number of you who actually practice this shit and work on yourselves and try to be better is frighteningly slim.
There have been too many game blogs for a while now. I get this email all the time, “Dude, I’m starting a game blog – help me out/link to me/help me name it/come up with a gimmick?
The facade is now gone, and the manosphere stands exposed for what it is: absent the evo-psych window dressing and racial science, it’s just the avocation of a 20-something frat boy lifestyle, with meaningless distinctions like wearing a suit and sex tourist traveling. Every guy who goes out and approaches girls on a Saturday night now thinks he can be an expert. The headless chicken remains of the manosphere will have dozens of blogs of this type, but no more relevant ones. It’s just a small, insignificant world, much like it was in the beginning with the DC Bachelor. Full circle.”
That pretty much echoed my observations. Like I mentioned in the preceding paragraphs, too many manospherians acted too pathetic for me to maintain my faith in their teachings. The number of losers combined with the bizarre and unnecessary bigotry against a lot of other groups convinced me that misogyny in general and manosphere talking points in particular were just unnecessary. Troy Francis had a succinct takedown of that crap generally:
“Whacked-out theories about race and racial superiority are similarly flawed, as well as being disgusting attacks on our fellow human-beings and this site has zero tolerance for them. They are also entirely irrelevant. I don’t go to blogs to read this garbage — I want to learn how to pick-up girls, how to get ripped, how to make money and improve my life. In my view, the manosphere should be a positive space dedicated to men’s self-improvement, not an online air-raid shelter for a bunch of nut-jobs waiting for the revolution.”
If the manosphere actually was a ‘positive space,’ it wouldn’t have so many problems. But as it happened, it always was, and never became anything more than, an “online air-raid shelter for a bunch of nut-jobs.” So, once again, no harm in leaving it.
I wonder, though. Why did the manosphere become such a magnet for all kinds of bigotry rather than just misogyny? Is there anything about hating women that encourages you to hate black, Jewish, etc. men as well? I think there is, actually.
See, one big part of manosphere ideology is evolutionary biology, mocked as “biotroofs” by people who disagree with it, which of course happens to be most people. According to manospambots like Roissy and others, women evolved to be dumber and more useless than men for a variety of reasons—they endured “less selection pressure” or whatever. Thus, a lot of these guys (Pro-Male/Anti-Feminist Tech was the most notorious of these) posted studies about how men had higher IQs than women or surveys showing men liked STEM fields better or statistics on how men won most nobel prizes to prove women were biologically inferior and would never equal men not only physically but intellectually as well. I’m not even gonna bother refuting that stuff, I’ll just point out it’s *the exact same reasoning* white nationalists use to proclaim whites superior to everyone else and blacks and Jews to be inferior and/or evil. They claim that cold winters in Europe (lol) selected for intelligence among whites, whereas blacks never evolved to be anything other than lazy, stupid, and violent, and also that Jews evolved to be parasites because they didn’t have a homeland for much of their history. Honestly, just look at this post from Stormfront:
Just replace “whites” with “men” and “non-whites” with “women” to get something that wouldn’t be out of place at Roissy’s or any other manosphere blog. So it’s absolutely not surprising at all that the manosphere found itself infected with all kinds of bigotry in addition to misogyny—the same ways of thinking that justified its misogyny would by necessity also justify every other kind of nonsense.
Now, I’m sure manospherians, or other rightoids generally in fact, would say all these studies are true and that women/non-whites/etc. are inferior. Whatever. Like I said, I’m not even gonna try to refute that nonsense here, though in the next section I will explain why it’s not consistent with other rightoid beliefs. I’m just going to point out that EVEN IF all, or any, this crap were true, it would make accomplishing anything for its adherents much, much harder. The end conclusion of manosphere ideology is that white guys are the real Masters of the Universe and ought to rule everyone else. Problem is, there just aren’t that many white guys compared to everyone else. Maybe you guys had a shot at ruling the world before WWII, but at this point, no matter how “superior” you might think you are and no matter how much your “technology” can help, women *and* non-white men in general can just overwhelm you through sheer power of numbers. So then you can roll back your goals a little and try to fight feminism only, proclaiming (at least publicly) that All Men Are Equal for that purpose. Problem is, since the arguments proving “female inferiority” also “prove” non-white inferiority, you’ll want to avoid those kinds of arguments, which undercuts your own cause.
With all that said, I’d like to end this section with one last good analysis from “Point Stick, Vent Spleen” I found which provides one more reason why the manosphere is so prone to these kinds of bizarre extremisms—the echo-chamber nature of it is really unhealthy.
“The “men’s movement”, like many extreme political movements and religious cults, tends to polarise and indoctrinate people. What I think tends to happen is that people who feel hurt or aggrieved go looking for support, find the MRAs, and as they spend more and more time in that movement they are encouraged to generalise a single bad experience into a hatred of all women. It seems that immersing oneself in an ideological echo chamber is a very good way of insulating oneself from reality, and replacing it with a delusional reality constructed by the group; furthermore, this process is self-reinforcing (as people are encouraged to view everything that happens through an ideological lens, they force events to fit their mental model and then take that fitting as confirmation of the model’s accuracy) and tends to only result in further group polarisation in the long run. There is an extent to which all cultural norms behave this way – that’s how the patriarchy/kyriarchy works, after all – but it seems to be much more pronounced, and even more dangerous, in cloistered groups like the MRM.”
I think you can see this in the examples I’ve given above. Spend too much time among manosphere misfits and you start believing that feminism is responsible for all the ills of the world, so anything even remotely related to feminism is evil, and if feminists think “maybe pedophilia is bad,” the circlejerk which has primed you to think anything they say is wrong will also prime you to defend pedos and make a fool (or worse) of yourself. Granted, there are more than a few cracks in the echo chamber—I’ve posted a lot of quotes from manospherians themselves who were annoyed by the overall patheticness and often perversion they saw in that scene. But to no-one’s surprise, the reasonable manospherians eventually left the manosphere or were driven out of it. I think these kinds of echo chambers and circle jerks are constructed in such a way that they can only reinforce their negative aspects—whenever someone challenges the dominant deviant worldviews and ideologies, there’s no healthy debate because these guys are primed to call anyone who disagrees with them a mangina or whiteknight or simp or whatever. So instead of the smarter guys leading their fellows out of the abyss, the smarter ones get called whatever shaming language of the day is a synonym for “gender traitor” and dismissed.
Thankfully, this never happened to me—but again, because I never got too involved with that scene. All I can say is that I’m glad I didn’t, and that I hope the manosphere guys who were starting to get skeptical of the nonsense they were seeing, like Thumpy and the 3 Bromigos fella, are doing as well as I am after having left it behind.
II: Ideological Inconsistency
Now, I suppose a few manospambots, if they ever find this entry, might complain that so far I’ve done a lot of mocking of manospherians themselves, but haven’t said anything against what they actually believe. Even if manospambots are a bunch of inveterate losers, isn’t it possible that their beliefs are actually correct? I don’t think that’s very likely, but fine, let’s be generous for a moment. Even if we bother looking at manosphere beliefs seriously, we find that a lot of such beliefs are inconsistent with each other, i.e by necessity much of what the manosphere believes must be false because two opposite propositions can’t be true at the same time. In this section, I’ll explain all of these contradictions.
A: Women are simultaneously weak yet strong
This one’s pretty simple. Even a few minutes of casual googling will reveal the typical manospambot or MGTOW believes women are inferior, unintelligent, amoral, and generally worse at absolutely everything than men—I provided a few examples in the previous section. But they ALSO believe that women either run society or that society is run for women’s benefit—look up “gynocentrism” for proof; they also have a bunch of evo-bio “explanations” for this, like “sperm cheap, eggs expensive.” The reasoning is that a tribe could repopulate itself if most of its men died, with one man fathering kids with all the women, while the converse wasn’t true, so human beings “evolved” to prefer and give deference to women as much as possible.
The problem is, if this were actually true, none of what the manosphere believes about female inferiority (or the inferiority of “manginas” or “simps”) could possibly be true. Let’s take the assumption that women somehow control society themselves. If this were true, then women would have to be superior in some respect to those they control (men). If they weren’t physically strong, they would have to be a lot smarter than men to manipulate us and have us do their bidding constantly. Most manospambots would deny that and say women really are stupid, and it’s just that men evolved to be “manginas” or whatever who can’t help but act in a “gynocentric” manner, giving women benefits the women haven’t earned. But in that case, the manospambot has admitted that despite ostensibly superior male strength and intellect, we’re doomed by evolution to be really stupid where it really counts (gender relations). Aside from that, there’s also this issue: “Manginas” seem to be running everything in just about every country in the world. If “manginas” and “simps” were that dumb, you’d have expected their governments to have fallen a while ago and true Manly Men to be running everything. Yet, as I described in the previous section, manospherians, MGTOWs, misogynists, and other non-mangina guys seem to be a motley crew of psychos, morons, and losers who couldn’t run a popsicle stand. Ain’t that weird?
As an aside, this is also the same problem white nationalists and fascists in general have. As Umberto Eco pointed out (the title for this section is a quote from him), they proclaim Jews to be stupid and lower-IQ than whites, yet also claim Jews somehow run the entire world and have been running it for centuries at least. Obviously, the Jews have to have something going for them if they control everything. But in any case, as I also mentioned at the end of the last section, it’s not much of a surprise there’s so much crossover between misogynists and white supremacists since they have to believe the same silly thing, i.e their hated enemies (women or jews) are simultaneously inferior yet somehow manage to control everything and foil them at every turn.
There’s one laughable manosphere lady (it’s always had a few self-loathing hangers-on), Esther Vilar, who said something like “Maybe men’s strength, intelligence, and beauty makes them the perfect slaves!” That’s funny, because (to take one example) it implies that formerly enslaved populations like African Americans were stronger, smarter, and more beautiful than their masters, but good luck getting Roissy or most other manospambots to admit that.
I’m not the first person to note many of these inconsistencies—here are some quotes from other bloggers who’ve made the same point. A funny post I found on another blog, Laserjungle, to start off with:
So I’ve browsed the MGTOW forums for a while and I think this is a relatively accurate description of some of their collective thinking.
Women are too stupid and emotionally-driven for higher level education and the workforce, but women who don’t work or go to college should be chastised as brainless leeches and parasites who will one day need a man to support them financially.
Modern women are nastly, morally-deprived sluts, who have long abandonded the superior notion that their virginity and sexuality should be reserved for the ONE man who will be her husband. Of course sexual abstinence does not apply to men whatsoever. And don’t give a bitch who won’t put out on the first date a second glance. Also, don’t believe a woman if she tells you she’s had less than twenty sexual partners, because women are inherently lying whores!
Modern women no longer want the traditional family and have instead chosen to ride “alpha” cock for all of their best years until they decide to settle. This shift will be the destruction of society as we know it! But if a woman even suggests that she wants to get married and procreate, RUN!!!!!!!!
Don’t even bother having conversations with women. They are nothing more than narcissistic vapid whores who have nothing interesting to say. Make an assumption and engage in a behavior that will let that notion go unchallenged so you can never be wrong!
Women are too selfish to be nuturing and good caregivers so children would be much better off being raised by men. But these children that we ~care so much about~ should be referred to as crotchspawn and fuck trophies.
There is no such thing as NAWALT (not all women are like that). All women are BIOLOGICALLY hardwired to be selfish, alpha-chasing, self-obsessed, destructive shebeasts. It’s SCIENCE!!! But let’s spend our lives constantly complaining about the behaviors we describe as inherent and natural and permanent.
“Few of the Men’s Rights arguments carry much weight. It’s ridiculous, for example, to claim that a country that has only ever had 38 female senators is matriarchial. As for the libertarian arguments, let’s apply Lenin’s favorite analytical technique: when someone says “Freedom,” ask “Freedom for whom? To do what?” What sort of “freedom” are the MGTOW calling for when they bemoan women who have the temerity to reject their advances? What sort of “freedom” calls for limited government, but also calls for men to “[u]se any rights to the benefit of other men as well as themselves?” The “freedom” the MGTOW demand is a freedom to dominate others and to ignore obligations to society. It is a freedom that has more to do with a twisted reading of Nietzsche than with Locke.”
“Secondly, the “sleeping your way to the top” argument doesn’t even make sense on its own terms. It is logically incoherent. After all, if women are able to leverage their sexuality to achieve an advantage over male colleagues, that presupposes they are not in charge. For a woman to sleep her way to the top, don’t all the people above her in the hierarchy have to be male? Because men’s rights activists always seem to imagine sexuality as synonymous with heterosexuality. Unless they are alleging that there has been a wholesale lesbian and bi takeover of our major corporate institutions, this whole argument seems to hinge on first admitting that men are overwhelmingly still holding the positions of power.”
“If this makes you scratch your head and wonder how a woman can control men through access to sex when she has such a limited window to work, then you’re not alone. The Red Pill philosophy isn’t big on internal consistency. After all, Red Pill-ers want to fuck the hottest women, yet these women are also the ones who are, in their words, “on the cock carousel”; so they want to fuck hot women and then turn around and shame the same women for fucking them. Women manipulate men, but men should apply dread game to get laid. They decry women for spinning multiple plates – RP jargon for “keeping men on the hook” – while also insisting that only betas settle down and alphas have harems. Women are manipulative and Machiavellian, forever plotting to fuck alphas and use betas but are also incapable of logic or rational thinking and instead rely on the “rationalization hamster” in order to settle cognitive dissonance.”
“Of course, what men tend to complain about in expenses in “maintaining their little woman” are usually the things they require her to have/use; they just don’t think about what she’s been doing to attract his attention all along, until he sees the expense later. Remember, breast implants are $3,000 to $5,000, repeated every 5 to 10 years. Think this isn’t really “required”? Check out pictures from beauty pageants (much harder to hide stuffed bras in swimsuits) before implants were approved; and compare to any such photos or even just ads, models, and celebrities now. What’s really sad is the surgery damages the nerves in the area, so women commonly lose a decent bit of sensation due to implants. How many men would be willing to make that tradeoff for their own anatomy?
Or, take makeup, shoes, clothes, manicures, hair salons… men seem aghast at the expenses incurred by them, but if a woman actually foregoes any of these, suddenly the cries of “butterface” or “sharp knees!” arise. My mother told me once, “Never let a man see you put on your makeup or your pantyhose”… in other words, don’t shatter the illusion that appearance comes naturally and easily. Remember that Katy Perry photo as she woke up? She had a fit and demanded it be removed, for this same reason. Men want the results without knowing what goes into it — discovering what all that costs is usually a shock. Remember, she was doing all that BEFORE she met you; you’re just finally getting the peek behind the curtain for what goes into the production.”
The quotes from Dr. Nerdlove and Quite Irregular provide an excellent segue into the next sub-section: The inconsistency of manosphere claims when it comes to sex.
B: Getting Laid is Good and Bad
“Marriage Sucks” is another loud rallying cry of the manosphere, with just about every element of it screaming about how you’ll certainly get “divorce-raped” and even if you don’t it’s still a drag, being “chained down” to a woman. However, they also believe that marriage was crucial to civilization. As the “Misandry Bubble,” which used to be close to a Bible among some segments of the manosphere, claims:
“To provide ‘beta’ men an incentive to produce far more economic output than needed just to support themselves while simultaneously controlling the hypergamy of women that would deprive children of interaction with their biological fathers, all major religions constructed an institution to force constructive conduct out of both genders while penalizing the natural primate tendencies of each. This institution was known as ‘marriage’. Societies that enforced monogamous marriage made sure all beta men had wives, thus unlocking productive output out of these men who in pre-modern times would have had no incentive to be productive. Women, in turn, received a provider, a protector, and higher social status than unmarried women, who often were trapped in poverty. When applied over an entire population of humans, this system was known as ‘civilization’.”
The funny thing is, even “old-school” marriage tends to be derided by manospherians, since they say women had easy jobs “in the home” while men had to do all the hard work of fighting in war or hunting or whatever. First, this line of thought isn’t really consistent with another bit of MGTOW agitprop, namely that men uninterested in women are super productive. They tend to compare themselves to bachelors like Erdos or Tesla all the time, but if marriage “reduces” male productivity, then feminism is to be praised for discouraging men from getting married. Aside from that, this line of thought makes civilization itself look profoundly unattractive. If even “marriage 1.0” was a drag for men, but we “need” to marry or else we’ll just hang around all day and civilization will collapse, maybe civilization ought to collapse. If marriage is slavery/exploitation for men, and civilization depends on marriage, then logically civilization depends on the slavery and exploitation of men, and we ought to thank feminism for obliterating civilization and thus liberating us.
On that note, another common manosphere talking point is that women were never really “independent,” and only the advance of technology (washing machines, etc.) made it practical for women to work outside the home. However, by the same token the manosphere and MGTOW can’t take “credit” for “rescuing” men from marriage, which a conservative, Critical G, pointed out:
“MGTOW can’t claim credit for non-marrying men who neither know anything about it nor have been induced by its writings. Feminists do exactly the same thing when they talk about the “progress” of women in industry and government. For example, the vast shift of women into the workforce and in fact the entire women’s movement, were made possible not by feminism but by the technological innovations that rendered housework so much lighter it gave housewives almost the entire day to themselves, which gave rise to women questioning the necessity of the traditional division of labour. Feminists will claim credit for that, but we are right to point out that this is a lie.”
Now, I think that’s too simplistic a read on history. However, this is yet another article of faith among manospambots, and as this guy (again, himself a righty) has pointed out, it makes MGTOW self-aggrandizement look silly. I’m not refraining from marriage because some loon on Youtube tells me I’m a mangina if I get married–larger technological and social currents deserve the credit rather than “MGTOWs” themselves.
There’s also the matter of “hypergamy.” Manospherians say this is how women are only sexually attracted to “high status” men, but “high status” to them means either a: rich men, or b: thugs and criminals. The more I think of it, though, the more it seems to me like grousing about hypergamy doesn’t fit with the social Darwinism the manosphere, and more generally the right wing, tends to espouse. Let’s take their definition of hypergamy as attraction to high status first. Manospherians complain that women have no loyalty and will hypergamously “trade up” the first chance they get. But from a Darwinistic standpoint, what’s wrong with that? Isn’t it better for civilization for women to go only for the best (wealthiest, i.e ostensibly smartest and most productive) man around so only the best genes get passed on? Sucks for the men who get pantsed, but hey, civilization requires sacrifice, right?
On the other hand, if manospambots decry female hypergamy as sexual attraction to thugs and murderers (for reasons we’ll get into in the next subsection), the conclusion we reach is that it’s not actually hypergamy, per se, manospambots oppose, but just “misdirected” hypergamy. If women were attracted only to high-IQ or math skills or whatever, the implication is that those manospambots wouldn’t mind at all. In that case, they shouldn’t be complaining about hypergamy in general and in fact should praise that evolutionary derived behavior; they should simply lament it’s not selecting for the right traits. But the problems get worse. If women are so sexually attracted to violent, evil thugs, wouldn’t that imply that most men throughout history, at least those who reproduced and spread their genes, would have been violent, evil thugs? After all, it’s not as if females of most species are sexually attracted to traits that don’t exist: Female deer are attracted to antlers because most male deer have them, female peacocks are attracted to flashy tails because male peacocks generally have them, and so on. If female humans are attracted to violence and a murderous demeanor, it stands to reason that most male humans have always been and generally are violent, murderous thugs. This is precisely what the most radical, man-hating, “kill all men” feminists believe. The fact that manospambots are replicating almost word for word the talking points of their most hated enemies does not fill me with confidence in their ideology.
C: Men are virtuous but also rape machines
Ironically enough, there’s one manospherian, Rollo Tomassi, who has out and out admitted this much. In one of his most famous essays, “War Brides,” he explains female psychology as essentially the product of women being constantly raped throughout all of the human race’s evolutionary history—“consent” simply didn’t exist for most of human history, in Rollo’s view, most of the time men from another tribe would just kill all of a woman’s male relatives and force her into slavery.
“Men are the disposable sex, women, the preserved sex. Men would simply die in favor of a superior aggressor, but women would be reserved for breeding. So it served a feminine imperative to evolve an ability to cut former emotional ties more readily (in favor of her new captor) and focus on a more self-important psychology – solipsism.”
There are several conflicts with other parts of manosphere ideology in this. First, just as I mentioned above, if women today are the descendants of women in the past who could easily transfer their loyalties to the men who murdered their original husbands and relatives, by necessity, men today are the descendants of men in the past who were the most effective and violent murderers and conquerors. In other words, evolutionary biology proves that men really are as bad as feminists say we are. That’s, uh, not ideal for the manosphere.
I suppose Rollo might just go full edgelord and say “violence is good! Warfare is natural and made humans the dominant species on Earth!” OK, fine, but in that case, he has absolutely no hope whatsoever of getting all men to band together for *any* large-scale enterprise, which includes “fighting feminism.” If his account of evolutionary biology is correct, men evolved stuff like “honor” and “morality” only in the context of small, closely related bands, not much farther than their own families. Outside of that tiny circle, literally every other man on the planet was a man’s deadly enemy. That being the case, our evolved psychology would make it impossible for us to network and organize with millions of other men who are completely unrelated to us and often of completely different races—black, white, Hispanic, Asian, and so on—in order to “fight against the common enemy of feminism.” So the whole idea of fighting not even for “men’s rights,” but just finding common ground with other men and helping other men is a complete non-starter, because any kind of “brotherhood” or “camaraderie” amongst men outside of those directly related to you is an evolutionary non-starter. Rollo’s own ideology destroys any hope for the social change he wants to see.
From a female perspective, first, this ‘war brides’ thing makes a mockery of “gynocentrism,” which is again the belief that society is generally run for women’s benefit. In Rollo’s view, women were pretty much always nothing but chattel; the fact that they didn’t have to go out fighting or do heavy labor or whatever is no more significant than the fact that prehistoric and Bronze Age warlords didn’t send their sheep or cattle or other livestock to battle either. If women have never been anything but “war brides” then the necessary converse is that it is and always has been a man’s world, and if Rollo feels oppressed that just proves he’s not manly enough to deal with it.
This, by the way, also refutes “Briffault’s Law,” another famous piece of manosphere “wisdom” that states sexual interaction only takes place on the female’s terms in any species. If rape was so widespread, then women obviously didn’t do any choosing.
There’s also how Rollo, like other manospherians, bemoans women sleeping around for reducing their (supposed) propensity for monogamy. But if the “war brides” thesis was true, monogamy should be impossible for women, period. If human evolution worked as Rollo said it did, why would human females ever have evolved any propensity whatsoever to be loyal to a human male if it was overwhelmingly likely the male they were loyal to (even if he was her “first”) would get killed and replaced with his murderer?
D: The “fall” of education
One more thing, since the topic of sex leads to children. Manospambots often lament the “feminization” of education, complaining that teachers favor girls over boys all the way from kindergarten to college. Curiously, I haven’t met many who have any good ideas about changing this, and I think I know why. Another crucial piece of manosphere ideology is that “cuckoldry is the male equivalent of rape,” and that the ABSOLUTE WORST THING IN THE WORLD for men is raising another man’s kids. If this were so, then the domination of women in teaching is not only expected but perfectly just, because teaching is really nothing so much as spending a whole lot of your time and energy raising another person’s kids. So you can’t tell men “caring for other people’s kids makes you a giant cuck!” and then complain when we’re disinclined to spend at least 8 hours every day for most of the year wrangling not just a few but dozens and dozens of children completely unrelated to us.
E: In evolutionary terms, the only men who would complain about feminism are those too weak to deal with it.
The Darwinist worldview of Rollo and other manospherians is actually an Achille’s heel in one important respect. See, evolution doesn’t favor the strongest or even the most intelligent—it simply favors those most adapted to their environment. In that case, it makes no sense to complain about “feminism” making marriage or siring children more risky for most men, because that simply means the men most able to navigate those risks will end up succeeding and passing on their genes. Manospambots might say that “good genes” aren’t being passed on in that case, but too bad for them, Darwin doesn’t care about what they think is good, he only cares about what survives. It doesn’t matter how much contempt manospherians might have for the type of guy who can flourish in a “feminized” society or whatever, all that matters is that the guy passes on his genes. Regardless of whether or not what Rollo and MGTOWs might call “traditional masculinity” was a survival asset in the past, it doesn’t seem to be right now. A couple of other bloggers have made this point succinctly and forcefully:
“Darwin said the most fit species are able to adapt to their changing environment. In evolutionary terms, this process takes multiple generations over the course of centuries or millenia. Nature weeds those with less favorable traits. In the same vein, MGTOW are unfit because they’ve not adapted to the behavior of contemporary women. The methods to attract and keep 21st century women are different. Beta provider game, which flourished for centuries, doesn’t work anymore.”
“Upon reading the long-winded whines of various PUA/MRA/APA/whatever-type-menfolk in various comment section about how the world of dating and sex is just not fair, one is forced to wonder just how much they’d like the outcome if dating and sex actually were “fair” under their definition. That is to say, if everyone’s (not just all men, or all whatever sub-group they’re imagining) desires, desirability, dislikes, abilities, and limitations were weighed equally by an impartial judge, and everyone were assigned a partner and required to act according to those dictates, much the way they wish women (excuse me, hot women) could somehow be compelled persuaded to grant their favors in some sort of egalitarian fashion.*”
“If you’re a man who thinks that there’s a “War on Men,” you probably deserve to get beaten by the women.”
Think nobody even remotely sympathetic to the manosphere could come to these conclusions? Think again. I quote again Thumpy, who was more of a PUA:
“Look, it’s fine to wake up one day and realize you’re a weak-ass chump. Lots of guys do it. The key difference is that you should start effecting change at a rather rapid pace once that realization has dick-slapped you across the face. If you’re still a bitter beta a year later, or heaven forbid 2, 3, 5, 10 years later… you ain’t ever gonna change. You are a permanent beta chump living in a world that no longer has any respect or need for beta chumps.
If that’s the case, quit blogging. Quit whining. Accept yourself and move to Alaska to be alone and enjoy the beautiful scenery there. I’m waiting for the day when MGTOW truly and permanently GTOW rather than just threaten to.”
Maybe manospherians would claim that Thumpy wasn’t compassionate enough for the plight of his fellow men (if they wouldn’t first gleefully declare that he’s totally going to get falsely accused of rape by the Feminist Establishment or something). The problem is that ‘compassion’ is one of those evil feminine emotions manospambots tend to decry. Remember how ‘war brides’ implies every man is every other man’s enemy? So then why should a guy like Thumpy be at all concerned with the masses of men supposedly ground up by the Feminist Machine? He doesn’t know ‘em, he’s not related to ‘em, so screw ‘em. He himself is doing very well thanks to feminism, as he says:
“Rather, I feel like this is a perfect time for guys like me. I feel like it’s a time when single men are more free than any other time in human history. I can bang chicks without worrying about having to marry them and without wanting to start a family with them, and without having to buy them tons of shit.
I guess I just don’t understand the anger of the manosphere. I seduce women because I like sex and I like having it with as many chicks as possible without spending too much time or money. Period. I don’t do it to make a political statement, I don’t do it to defeat “feminism,” and I certainly don’t do it because I feel oppressed by anyone.”
Another guy on /r/marriedredpill felt the same, directly in response to Rollo too:
“Thanks partially to you, I welcome the thought of raising my sons to wield their “maleness” in a female primary, or equalism society. Isn’t that going to be part of the message of your masculine-fatherhood blog direction? How valuable unabashedly masculine men are in that society? The oft-mentioned 20%? Assuming they can make it though life without being trivially criminalized, the world is their oyster, like it is ours, the men of MRP, the men who read your blog.
Haters gonna hate, always have, but frame, value, being attractive, OI, and DNGAF “trump” all that, none of us here would have believed it if we hadn’t lived it along our journey, right?
What is the point of traditional masculinity in the blue pill dream world where, by virtue of only their penis and “doing the right thing”, every male gets a job, middle class lifestyle, 2.5 kids and a DTF wife who loves only him for her entire life. If that world exists, or ever did, then great, sign me and my progeny up, but isn’t the point that it doesn’t? That the burden of performance is real? Display high value or gtfo? The perfect-dad, old-set of books society or the sexual freedom, Pareto society looks the same from the top right?”
But fine, let’s ignore all this. Remember, I don’t buy into Rollo’s evo-bio stuff all that much either. Rape, abduction, and warfare happened throughout human history, sure, but if it was THAT prevalent large-scale civilization above the level of the tribe could never have arisen. By the time humans started living in cities like Sumer, with thousands of people rather than maybe a hundred at most clan members, men must have somehow figured out how to respect and work with other men, even unrelated ones. And as you’ll see from my post history and general outlook, I’m a big fan of benevolence, brotherhood, and helping out my fellow man. But then this leads me to another irony: If the manosphere is supposed to be about helping men, then to the extent that men take its advice, the less they actually need the manosphere, MGTOW, or any of that other stuff.
III: The Manosphere Defeats Itself
A: The more a man wins, the more he likes feminism
I’ll start with my personal experience—don’t worry, I won’t bellyache a lot, I’ll just briefly recap a few things I already mentioned earlier in this essay. A core tenet of MGTOW, at least, is that you should avoid women as much as possible and eschew relationships, and a core tenet of the manosphere in general is that you should “make your mission, not your woman” a priority, and seek to improve yourself as much as possible. So those were two pieces of advice I sort of followed when I was still drifting adjacent to that scene; as I’ve mentioned before, I tend to stick around communities with more men in them, and IRL I didn’t have any relationships because I found those to be a distraction from my work. In terms of work, I kept my head down and tried to both study as much as I could and improve myself in other ways; again something I’ve mentioned before.
Naturally, I found my life improving, but curiously enough, this didn’t make me either more sympathetic to manosphere ideas or even in need of any manosphere or MGTOW communities themselves. Remember, yet again, manospambots generally believe that feminism oppresses men and so on and so forth. But here I was, at a university with a pretty significant feminist presence, and by doing exactly what manospherians and MGTOW said I should do, I found myself…not affected by “feminism” as they saw it at all! I was never “falsely accused of rape” or generally given any trouble from women, and no women ever tried to keep me from improving myself or studying (quite the opposite, as I’ll mention later). By playing my cards right and being judicious in my interactions with women, and focusing on myself and self-improvement rather than “appeasing” women, just as manospherians said I should, I found that living in a “feminist world” was actually reasonably easy, pleasant, and profitable.
If that was the case, what incentive would I have to oppose feminism like manospambots said I should? Indeed, instead of grousing in resentment and convincing myself I was somehow oppressed, which is what the manosphere seemed to encourage, enjoying my life and thinking of myself as a winner rather than a victim (of feminism, women in general, or anything else) seemed like a much, much better option. Kid Strangelove, a manosphere type himself, put it extremely well:
“The feminists, those so called evil evil feminists, were telling me all along how to make my life easier. It’s as if life is a video game and the feminists were walking around handing out free strategy guides, while complaining about the fact that strategy guides exist.”
His outlook is a little different from mine—I’ve come to the conclusion that feminism doesn’t work quite like he’s portrayed it—but ironically enough, he found how to put a positive spin on what manospambots perceived as “feminist oppression.” If feminists say men are privileged, why complain when they do? Why not consider if you actually are, and then *enjoy* that privilege? I’ll be the very first to admit I’m VERY privileged, and not just because I’m a man—as I’ve said before, I’m healthy, wealthy, and unimaginably blessed with friends. That doesn’t mean I’m going to feel resentful over someone pointing it out, it just means I’ll try to share my luck with others through being benevolent and virtuous deeds (as part of my project of making up for a misspent youth, which involved being close to the manosphere a while back—this whole essay will hopefully make up for my earlier foolishness by convincing younger guys to stay away from that scene).
Indeed, with life as good as it was for me, I found less and less reason to hang around MGTOW and manosphere sites. I was “Going My Own Way” and very happy without a relationship. Why would I need to look up yet another miserable, negative thread on some MGTOW forum about how women totally sucked when I had essentially no negative experiences with women nowadays? And why would I ever need to involve myself with drama and doxing as I described in the first section? Same applied to manosphere sites in general. I didn’t need to read another screed from Roissy/Firepower about Jews or deranged ranting about the age of consent on some weirdo’s manospambot hangout. And so I left it all behind.
As usual, other folks have come to similar conclusions. A fella on neoGAF pointed out why MGTOW, for instance, is doomed to become what it loathes:
“Since it is publically known that MGTOW is really just unsuccessful males MGTOW will soon become synonymous with terms MGTOW’s secretly hate. Virgin, Loser, Beta. And since the whole origin of the MGTOW movement is to psychologically escape such terminology, it is necessarily doomed to fail since MGTOW will soon be lumped with such terminology as soon as some societal threshold of knowledge of MGTOW is reached.”
Another guy, a conservative one too, noted how taking self-improvement (and self-responsibility) seriously led him to abandon manosphere-style bitterness against women:
“Regardless of what has happened to you. Man up. I had just made the decision and was working to get into shape last year when I had to have a knee surgery. My quadriceps still hasn’t come back entirely, but I’m working on it every day and I intend to drop some fat and gain some muscle as fast as possible. I’m going to start doing the Stronglifts exercises I can do with my knee still weak until it catches up. I’m not on here whining about it. I’m not posting to body-building websites whining about it. So whatever your knee surgery is, be it being divorced or cheated on or whatever — man up and improve your own life.
You can’t make someone do what you want them to. If that were possible, every person on earth would have bought all of my books and I’d be sitting in the mountains somewhere right now drinking thirty year old Scotch in a hot tub. You can’t force your wife to want you, or to stay married to you. And you shouldn’t want to. I don’t want someone to feel obligated to do anything for me; I want them to want to because I’m fucking awesome.
Be more awesome.
– Everything isn’t women’s fault, and every woman isn’t the same.
I was pretty fucking bitter before my wife and I got together, when it came to women. Mostly, because I made really poor choices about who I tried to date. I even, at times, compromised my preferences thinking I was asking too much. No, I wasn’t. I chose shitty women. It’s not their fault I chose to try and date them. They had all sorts of stupid orbitters (and for a time I was one), they felt like they were awesome princesses, and I didn’t bring enough to the table. But right now? This isn’t me trying to be egotistical or anything. Right now? I’m better off than any of them, and my wife is more attractive than any of them, and she and I are more sexually compatible.”
The ever-estimable Thumpy has noted how the manosphere encourages its adherents, especially younger ones, to become miserable and dysfunctional rather than self-actualized and well-adjusted:
“I guess you could say that the manosphere has a collective case of Borderline Personality Disorder (DSM-V be damned). “I hate you, don’t leave me,” the manosphere says to women. “You’re evil, why don’t you like me?”
To carry the analogy further, manosphere bloggers involve themselves in “splitting,” or black-and-white thinking. All women supposedly want the same things and have the same urges. They all lose their looks at precisely the same age. They’re all the same level of emotional and irrational. The opposite of men, of course, who are also all the same as each other. Or at least we should be but for the fact that we’ve all been “feminized.” Etc.
I’ve learned in my lifetime that people who make broad-brush statements about a topic usually have very little experience with the topic of which they speak.
So instead of being presented with stuff like Speed Seduction and even to a lesser extent Mystery Method and RSD — which address individual issues and teach young men to at least kinda see each woman as a unique person worthy of some basic human respect — modern internet “dating advice” instead presents guys with radical, all-or-nothing thinking that demonizes women, blacks, gays, liberals, “sluts,” and most of the entirety of the contemporary Western world.
And the solution that the manosphere apparently proposes for society’s ills is of course utterly impossible: a return to “the patriarchy” of centuries past. Sorry, that just ain’t gonna happen. We’re more likely to return to riding in covered wagons.
So you get a bunch of teenage boys searching for ways to avoid heartbreak and they’re shunted into a weird, dogmatic cyber-world where women and society itself are the enemy and the only solution is so untenable as to be absurd. I can’t imagine the fear and despair that goes through their minds. All I can say is that I’m glad I’m not a teenage boy anymore.”
I suppose MGTOW might argue that they don’t even want to be liked by women. But that leads back to what I mentioned above, the pointlessness of MGTOW forums and communities for men who follow the MGTOW’s advice. These guys claim to be “indifferent” rather than hateful towards women, and focused on living awesome, women-free lives, but again, looking at their forums, it’s mainly just grousing about women. Even on their supposed “off-topic” sections, where you’re supposed to discuss sports or videogames or other fun, non-women related topics, there are bunches of threads either overtly or obliquely whining about women; this is the case for more or less all MGTOW fora, it was how mgtow.com operated and the off-topic section of Going Your Own Way seems to have the same problems. In purely practical terms, I would be MUCH better off going to forums specifically dedicated to my “masculine” interests—videogames, cars, nature and animals, shooting (though it’s been a while since I’ve been to the range, I should see if it’s open now…though since COVID is coming back, prolly not)—rather than some MGTOW hive where there’s always the threat that the proprietor might blow it up for no reason or the members will start fighting about Jews or what “true MGTOW” is or whatever.
This assessment comes straight from the mouth of…one of the most well-known and influential early MGTOWs himself. Though not many remember him now, Pook of the Pook’s Mill blog helped shape a lot of the higher ideals of the “Men Going Their Own Way” crowd, such as living happily without being married. Yet he eventually came up with the best, most concise, and most perceptive analysis of why the whole thing went sour in the end. I really wish I’d come across this blog post BEFORE reading anything else in the manosphere, but I only found it out later, when I was doing research for this essay—it would have saved me so much trouble. I absolutely must quote it here:
“There is something very wrong with MGTOW. Instead of talking about ‘men going their own way’, we see…
-Anti-Americanism (or other rants against one’s mother country)
-Declarations of Chicken Little economic/social/cultural collapse.
-Religious screeds against a particular religion or against all religions.
-Evangelizing the ‘Deck-Stacked-Against-Us-Have-No-Hope’ view of society (which is unproductive)
-Evangelizing that one ought to live like a Mexican…
-…or another country…
-Forums become a ‘Yes!’ echo chamber. There is no discussion, just rants filled with yes-men.
These ‘elements’ are well known but ignored because of the ‘good things’ that do come out. We should just shrug off these things and compromise with them. Well, there is one problem.
When food and poison compromise, which is the victor? It is the poison. Eating it may be sustaining… for the short term… but your body fills up with these poison toxins. You begin to lose your ambition, your passion, and generally become filled with bitterness.
I have wondered how this is occurring. It is not uncommon. Many ‘movements’ somehow get filled with negative filled people with anger issues and other wackos. But not all movements. So how did MGTOW become a container for this garbage?
The answer is that MGTOW is founded on a negative itself: avoidance of woman. This has caused blanket rants against women. “But many of these rants are accurate, Pook!” So what? A farmer can rant all day about the unfairness of frost, but that will not get him anywhere. There is no cosmic justice out there. The world is what it is and its better to live in it that in a hyper-reality.
Perhaps this will hit more to the point. How many years has MGTOW existed? And what has changed since then? Really, nothing has changed at all.
But I have to wonder why no one in MGTOW can keep to the subject. Pick any random thread and you will find someone start going off the reservation of a speech against a religion or another unasked for soapbox sermon on some oddball subject. Often, many will randomly insert his “brilliant” assertion that civilization will collapse in ten years.
MGTOW is based on the belief that men have made mistakes (which should be spared making mistakes). These mistakes can include marriage, being nice guy, being worshipful to women, and so on. All these mistakes have a common theme: egotism. When the man got married, he was so sure he was doing the right thing and the naysayers were all jealous villains.
Since so many join MGTOW based on being wrong in the past, why does everyone act like they are right all the time? It is amazing! The egotism never died. It just shifted into new forms. This would explain why someone can’t keep to the subject of MGTOW and instead must start bashing a religion, bashing a country, or bashing something else. One can be right on something and be wrong on other things. But MGTOW do not see that. They act like they have suddenly become right on everything (so they become vocal on it).
If we were wrong in the past, and it damaged our lives (such as getting married to a fiend), why do we strut around as if we have such ‘wisdom’? If we were so wrong once, we could be wrong again. Yet, this reservation is nowhere to be found in MGTOW. Every man has his own pet theories. The dogs slip their leash and begin to ravage the good content.
To be honest, I don’t see many happy MGTOW. There are no celebrations about being ‘free’ but complaining about… something. Trust me; celebrations and good cheer are far more effective and contagious than “being right all the time”.
In normal society, people do not like being around someone ‘right all the time’. Even if they are right, they are downright annoying. People prefer light-hearted, good cheered fun. When I think of MGTOW, ‘good cheer’ is the last to come to mind. MGTOW isn’t about being alive as it is about escaping pain.
For as much as we mock feminists for being negative, for getting with women to talk bad about men, it is becoming more and more clear that MGTOW is becoming more like the mirror image. Behavior by behavior, a MGTOW male acts very similar to a feminist in lifestyle and habit. You begin to live alone, have meetings with guys to ‘talk bad about women’ (to ease existential pains), and write bad essays.”
Finally, there’s one respect in which MGTOW in particular kinda shoots itself in the foot. The “Still Drinking” blog had an amusing rundown of it:
“These men are willingly removing themselves from the whole game. This problem is consciously and actively removing itself. It is to woman-hating what the breatharians were to religion. The dogma eats itself, almost like a whiny asshole running off into the woods where nobody has to listen to him anymore. It almost makes me think that this is a clever joke designed to get men like this out of the way.3 All of this makes me hesitant to write the next paragraph, in case it encourages them to come out of the woods to whine more.”
In other words, regardless of whether or not anything they say is true, by rejecting women and not leaving descendants, MGTOWs are just ensuring future generations won’t have whatever traits lead to MGTOW-ism. They’re breeding their own ideology out of existence.
Ah, but what about artificial wombs and surrogacy? Isn’t that a solution to that particular quandary? MGTOW types talk about it a lot; as I mentioned earlier the old Pro-Male/Anti-Feminist Tech guy, now completely defunct, was big about this idea, but even though I’m not sure if his old entries are saved on the Wayback Archive, I did find other examples of manosphere types gloating about how artificial wombs would end up being the Final Solution to the Female Question:
“The other females will be incapable of competing with fembots (or with other women) thus they will die out (childless, husbandless) or will compete with men, thus become more like men, thus will become unnecessary, because the world doesn’t need imitators of men (“hyenas”).”
A somewhat less malicious all-male utopian dream can be seen at “Male Procreation:”
“Let me explain my own vision of the male clan, bearing in mind that one could doubtlessly conceive of other types of male-only families. I see the male clan as a group of men (perhaps as many as 20, or as few as 2 or 3) who maintain an artificial womb as their sole means of procreation. Reproduction would occur in vitro, without needing any kind of fertilization; indeed, the genetic material need not come from sperm at all, and the chromosomes could simply be inserted into an artificial cell. The origin of these chromosomes could be quite varied in theory – in some cases, they could come from one parent, from two parents (involving genetic recombination, and again, without anything even remotely related to their sexual organs or sperm cells) or in the same manner from the whole clan; they could even be partly synthetic, i.e. created from scratch. The child would grow up being raised by either the father (if there was no second genetic parent), or both genetic parents, with support from the clan overall. Sexuality would be completely out of the picture in the sort of male clan I envision, although I am sure that traditionalists would take issue with it as much as they do with homosexuals.”
All this probably sounds a little weird, but there’s a bigger problem with these brave technological pioneers: If you really want a world where artificial wombs (and in fact, other male-friendly technologies) are commonplace, the manosphere and especially the manosphere’s politics actively hinder you in that goal.
B: Artificial wombs (and to a lesser extent male contraception) owe much more to feminism than to manospambots, and ironically enough the manosphere’s right-wing bent works against this goal
First, if you haven’t noticed it, MGTOWs and manospambots in general tend to be right-wing rather than left wing. There are a few exceptions, but for the most part they’re all in for guys like Trump, or at most are libertarian. Even the ones who aren’t religious tend to vote Republican (and support American Taliban types like the dearly departed Dalrock) simply because they think the Democrats are more feminist or mangina-esque or whatever.
Big problem, though: The American right wing is generally pretty strongly opposed to artificial womb research due to religious concerns, as well as its hangups over abortion. There was a woman a few years back, Dr. Helen Liu at Cornell, was working on them, but stopped due to the controversy:
“This sounds pretty promising, but Liu stopped her research there. All the attention from medical ethicists, activists, and the media put her off of the whole project.
“It turned out to have all of these social implications, and I didn’t want to deal with it,” Liu told Don.”
The nature of artificial womb technology, which involves fiddling with embryos, would be repulsive to right-wing religious pro-lifers if it ever got advanced enough to apply to humans, because the process of researching such things would very likely burn through a good number of “unborn actual human beings.” There’s also the fact that working with actual artificial wombs would be REALLY helpful for gay men, as this article points out:
So the notoriously homophobic American right wouldn’t be too fond of it. So if they were really serious about freeing themselves from the reproductive chains of women, MGTOW would be better off joining me on the left. I’ll not be holding my breath, though.
The other thing is that MGTOW and manospherians claim society spends too much money and effort on women and their welfare and thus generally oppose anything that could even possibly help women on those grounds. The thing is, if you want artificial wombs, this is completely shooting yourself in the foot because working artificial wombs would be a huge benefit to women’s health for obvious reasons—no more risks of pregnancy or dangerous caesarian sections or whatever. It would even arguably rescue feminism, which these guys hate, from the demographic implosion they say is always around the corner, because left-wing urban women won’t have to choose between their careers and reproducing anymore:
In professional climates, too, where women feel social pressure to hide their pregnancies, ectogenesis would allow women to have babies on their own timetable, away from the prying eyes of supervisors and co-workers. As new data from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shows, pregnancy discrimination continues to affect women in every field in every locality in the country. If ectogenesis becomes an affordable option for working women, pregnancy discrimination could be avoided altogether by rendering gestation and childbirth completely invisible to employers and prospective employers alike.
Aside from that, there’s also the fact that literally nobody working on artificial wombs would even sympathize remotely with MGTOW or manosphere ideology for reasons alluded to above. There are a bunch of those types, like the aforementioned PMAFT, who are or were computer programmers or ex-military or whatever, but despite how much hope they place in artificial wombs, they will never, ever be in a position to actually work on such devices or assist their completion. Why? Because to create an artificial womb, you need to know how actual ones work, which involves becoming a gynecologist or obstetrician or in a related field—i.e fields dedicated to women’s health and helping women, which manospambots loathe above all else. So, in a stroke of irony, the greatest hope misogynists have can only be realized through the efforts of either women or “manginas,” i.e men who don’t hate women. That’s a little too much irony for me, so it’s another reason I decided to dump all that pointless misogyny.
Two minor asides here: First, it’s also an amusing irony that the most sympathetic portrayal of an all-male world where they reproduced via artificial wombs came from a feminist woman, Lois McMaster Bujold and her book, Ethan of Athos. See these links:
Second aside: since so many manospherians are also afraid of women tricking them into pregnancy, this also applies to pro-male technology like easy male contraception. Conservatives generally dislike male contraception almost as much as female contraception (see what Edward Feser thinks about condoms), so manospherians cozying up to Trump and the rabidly religious American right wing are not going to be happy. We’re much more likely to see advances in, say, reversible vasectomies or a “male pill” without sideffects if those “feminist” and “mangina” Democrats were in charge.
Now, there’s one other technology MGTOW types love, and that’s surrogacy. Renting a womb rather than creating an artificial one. Well, as usual, they might not be all they’re cracked up to be. First, being a single father is very tough indeed; manospherians like to claim that the outcomes for single fathers are much better than those for single mothers, but when it comes to surrogates at least, I’ve seen a few nasty articles which make me think that might not be the case:
Some very nasty murder/infanticide bits indeed. From what I’ve seen of MGTOWs and manosphere types, I don’t think they’d do much better than James Alan Austin. Aside from that, there’s also the political problems involved with surrogacy. As this article mentions
There are apparently Islamic objections against surrogacy in virtually all forms, so I suppose that’s another religion of right-wing patriarchs that would foil a MGTOW’s hope for utopia. Aside from that, some of the most popular surrogacy destinations, like Mexico and the Ukraine, have cracked down on the practice, partially at the behest of right-wing parties:
“The second proposed legislation prohibits surrogacy for foreign couples. Sensible Surrogacy believes that legislation is unlikely to move forward. The consultancy points out that similar legislation has been introduced previously by CONSERVATIVE elements in the government”
(Emphasis added on “conservative”)
“But the Tabasco state legislature voted 21-9 on Monday to restrict the option to Mexicans. It also says that couples looking for a child must include a mother aged 25 to 40 who can present proof that she is medically unable to bear a child.”
What a surprise, conservative right-wingers aren’t exactly keen on letting foreign single men exploit “their” women? I certainly couldn’t have seen that coming from a mile away. Yet another example of how the right-wing bent of MGTOWs and other manospherians actually works against their goals.
This also applies to another manosphere wet dream (heh), sex robots and virtual sex, which they think reduce women’s “sexual power.” I like porn as much as the next guy, but I don’t have conservatives to thank for easy access to it, much less manospambots. It’s a hell of a lot more likely a Christian theocracy would shut off Pornhub (and by extension, any kind of virtual sex machine or sex robot) than the Democratic party would, even if plenty of feminists and/or women don’t like porn. Even aside from this, how many MGTOWs or other manospambots are in the Realdoll or electric onahole industries? Given the aforementioned propensity towards immorality and psychosis among the manosphere, those guys have absolutely nothing to contribute towards making cheap and effective “sexual substitutes;” any business they started to that end would likely collapse in on itself in short order. Even if I agreed with manospambots, what possible reason would I have to throw my lot in with them or support them? They’d get nothing done.
On that note, to end this sub-section with a bit of humor (or at least whimsy), another way in which manospambots shoot themselves in the foot is through their emphasis on STEM, especially engineering. You’ll find these guys constantly laughing about how women major in “useless” fields and how technology will totally liberate men. I’ve already described how they shoot themselves in the feet with regards to technology, but in reference to “fighting feminism”: Look, if you’ve been falsely accused of rape, you want a lawyer, not a software developer, and if you want to roll back “feminist laws,” you need political scientists and savvy campaigners, not math nerds. You also need, in general, people capable of networking with others and navigating the often competing desires of a variety of different groups and even individuals while still keeping them focused on a larger goal that benefits all of them together. In other words, you need people with excellent social skills…and surprise surprise, manospherians often decry “social skills” as useless feminine stuff. It sure doesn’t seem that shocking that they’ve failed to get much traction in that case.
D: Manospambots WANT to be miserable
The other thing I started thinking about was how the manosphere seemed to encourage misery and discourage happiness among its members. If you’re not constantly grousing about women and feminism, and not constantly under the impression you’re a few days away from being falsely accused of rape or being sent to a feminist death camp or whatever, they think you haven’t truly internalized the red pill or you’re a mangina or gender traitor or whatever. Look at the reactions a lot of them gave to some of the posts I’ve presented previously, where guys talk about avoiding negativity and looking at the positive side of things. And, bluntly stated, viewing life as a zero-sum game in which literally 50% of the population is out to get you is simply not conducive to happiness. Hell, it makes it harder to be happy even when women treat you *well,* which is what manospherians say women owe to men. Even if their wives or girlfriends do nice things for ‘em they get mad. See this post from an old relationship coach, Athol Kay:
“When a woman presents her ass to you and requests you pay attention to it, it’s not because she’s completely morally bankrupt, or a spoiled rotten child, it’s because she wants you to hit on her.
Seriously… what husband passes up being opened in a sexual context by their wife for the opportunity to be offended by it?
Not everything is a fitness test, but acting like everything is will tear apart even a good, loving, functional relationship. And then you’ll be divorced. Way to go Men’s Rights.
I thought the original post I’ve linked to was bad enough, but the comments are disheartening in the extreme. I don’t see how anyone with a happy marriage is going to want to get involved with the maelstrom of rage and hate that is Men’s Rights. Some of that is going to flow over and affect your own relationship.
Really, I’d like to help change laws etc some are clearly terrible, but I just find myself repulsed by the overall rhetoric of negativity in Men’s Rights writing.”
Another relationship coach, Dr. Nerdlove, and an old-hand PUA have also described how the relentless negativity of the manosphere tears down attempts at self-improvement:
“Let me ask you a serious question: would you want to be part of a system that sets standards that are literally impossible for many – if not most – people to achieve? What about one where you’re expected to be always on the verge of violence? One where the only acceptable emotion is perpetual anger? One that requires that you sever or truncate most of your emotional relationships in pursuit of membership? Especially when your membership is continually in danger of being stripped from you through random circumstance…Part of what’s amazing about the modern concept of masculinity is how fragile it is; being a man isn’t something inherent so much as it is things that you do. In PUA and MRM circles, everyone talks about being “alpha” ((Which, ironically enough, doesn’t even exist in nature…)) but “alpha” is a nebulous and ever-shifting set of behaviors, rather than some natural state of existence. It may be “Not taking shit from other dudes” as easily as “fucking lots of women” or “having the flashiest job”… all of which means that being alpha is a temporary state at best. Every so-called “alpha” is just a “beta” waiting to re-emerge. Every “real man” is in constant danger of being downgraded back to “pussy” or being somebody’s “bitch”.”
“Does it seem likely to you that it is an attractive identity to have resentment in your heart towards women, to think of them as an inherently inferior sub species, and you see a conspiracy in every corner?”
A few years ago, as I watched manospherians dox each other, act like lunatics, and so on, I decided that this was indeed not an attractive identity—so I simply stepped away from it. Hopefully younger guys who read this essay can see why, and avoid even hanging around the scene like I was foolish enough to do.
E: Feminism helps men
Another manosphere irony is something Thumpy alluded to in a previously quoted post. As he noted, feminism actually hasn’t been that bad for men, especially single ones. If you’re a MGTOW who doesn’t want to get married or even have a relationship, you have it pretty good. Remember, marriage was expected of men as well as women throughout history and in varieties of “traditional” societies. If you didn’t want to deal with their fairer sex, for the most part you had to go off and join a monastery or become a wandering soldier or mercenary. Nowadays, though? Thanks to feminism, since marriage isn’t expected of women, there’s less pressure on men to get married too—not many “bachelor taxes” around these days. I mean, you don’t have to look too hard to see feminists saying marriage isn’t the end-all be-all of existence, see:
There are also a few other articles worth looking at I found over the years:
Even the ladies at Jezebel don’t give a crap about celibacy, so it’s unclear why some manospherians think abstaining from sex will stick it to the feminists or whatever.
In these two articles, you can see feminists actually coming up with some ideas that could benefit men, which, again given the manosphere’s entirely adversarial relationship with feminism (at least), is pretty ironic.
The other ironic thing is that it’s the absolute most extreme feminists who actually want exactly and precisely what extreme manospherians and MGTOW claim to want. Artificial wombs? Shulamith Firestone loved those and thought they’d liberate women. Men avoiding women as much as possible? There was actually a whole band of hardcore lesbian feminists who went out and bought “Womyn’s Land” to live as far away from men as possible. Yeah, yeah, MGTOWs will claim those lesbian separatists are still living in a “protective male context” or some other nonsense, but in practical terms, at least they’re not being “parasitic housewives” or “divorce-raping” men or the other stuff manospambots complain about. So if they really wanted to actually advance their agenda in concrete terms, the gender-separatist manospherians would make alliances with the most radical of feminists. Heck, even milder feminists aren’t *that* angsty about gender separation, see this article:
But whatever, if manospambots are gonna complain about their perceived enemies rather than work with whoever will help them achieve their goals, it shouldn’t be surprising they’re known more for complaining than accomplishing much of anything.
F: Manosphere ideology debilitates social cohesion
Even aside from that, making alliances with anybody is a pretty steep order for most manospherians. As mentioned throughout the previous sections, they have a marked tendency to screw each other over. Doxxing, backbiting, grifting, all kinds of immoral behavior, even within their in-group. I think there are a few reasons manosphere beliefs themselves foster this sort of self-defeating behavior. I already went over one, namely that if you argue that men today are the descendants of “warriors” who spent most of their time killing other men, the implication is that nearly all men are each other’s enemies by nature, so it’s not surprising manospherians wouldn’t have much loyalty to their supposed “fellows.” However, there’s also another factor at play: The social Darwinism I described above. Remember, most manospambots look down on women for being less “productive” than men, they decry housewives as being “parasites,” and so on. There’s also generally an undercurrent of ‘might makes right’ in those parts, perhaps part and parcel of the general right-wingery of the manosphere. But that sort of thinking, when applied more broadly, makes social cohesion within a group much more difficult. Its adherents start to wonder why they should help anyone else, including members of the in-group, who are less fortunate for whatever reason, because such unfortunates could be “weaker” or somehow inferior for whatever reason. So rather than focusing on how to help all men, or even other fellow-travelers, manospherians become more concerned with proving their own “fitness” through whatever means (being alpha for PUAs, making money in STEM for some MGTOWs, and so on), and then mocking other men, even those harmed (supposedly) by feminism, if they’re poorer or less sexually successful. It also encourages the scamming and backstabbing I’ve described, since from a social Darwinist perspective, there’s nothing wrong with pulling one over your compatriots; if you can trick someone they’re an unfit intellectual inferior who deserves to be fleeced. Here are some comments from a couple manospherians themselves who’ve noticed this:
“It wasn’t until I read Game blogs that I heard of them. Whats disheartening is when you see an MRM post on a game blog or seduction forum, they act like clowns, they’re quick to bash you and call you a “Mangina” a “Feminist” and a “White knight” if you don’t agree with them. They are very hostile and refuse to argue in civility and resort to shaming tactics and name calling like women. Try to tell them to stop “whining” ranting and then they get hypocritical like a feminist do and will try to talk down on you by calling you a “Shamer” or worse use ad hominem to attack you(I had a MRM guys lose an argument so bad they started posting pics of girls I’ve approached to “shame” me). This reason alone is why black men wouldn’t wanna be associated with that foolishness.”
“Men are just more zero-sum in their behavior than women. And this reflects in their ideological bents, and how their social movements are constructed. Men are constantly trying to rebuild hierarchies in a world that is getting flatter by the day. That is why they are failing when faced with movements that are more female centric in nature.
Let’s look at one example: There is an Ideology which states that you must live up to some ideal (be a well-off ‘producer’) to get something that everyone in a modern, moderately automated technological society should have access to, no questions asked (healthcare). Who is pushing this belief the hardest? Men. Who is, for the most part, against it? Women.
This type of thinking is also why many men are finding themselves economically disenfranchised in a job market with greater female saturation. Unlike women, men just seem to have no urge to protect each other from economic ruin (and sexual ruin, etc.)
Look at how many young men are libertarians (they have a lot of good ideas, but the core of their ideology is zero-sum). Just repeating the same cycle. Men are starting to wake up to this problem, but they have a long way to go.”
As this commenter notes, the fact that feminism, whatever its other flaws may be, tends to be less zero-sum than manosphere ideologies is one reason it’s been so successful compared to its erstwhile foes. The ever astute Thumpy hilariously lampooned this way of thinking in one of his essays:
“But I have a solution! Hear me brethren! The solution is this: let’s just make women start listening to us again. Even more, let’s make women start obeying us again. I’m not really sure how to do it but that’s the plan anyway. Because if I’m in charge.. I mean we.. If we’re in charge again and women have to do what we say, then the world will be a much better place again. Like it was in the olden days when there was no crime or slavery or genocide or violence or bad marriages or shitty reality shows on practically every fucking channel what the fuck!!
That’s it. That’s the solution. The final solution! We must band together, gentlemen. It’s women who’ve gotten uppity. Women who’ve put us in this hellhole of a society. Every bad thing that’s ever happened is because of women, and every good thing is because of men like you and I.. or is that you and me? Doesn’t matter!
So remember that, lads. Remember! As we take back this society from women. You and I, the two of us. Men together. Men forever. No girls allowed!
Unless they want to have sex with me.”
Finally, there’s actually a bit of a mirror image for the manosphere’s problems in another social movement: New Atheism. I used to be a religious opponent of the New Atheists, but nowadays I’m more of an agnostic with a dim view of religion. Even so, I can still note that New Atheism fizzled out because it was too negative, too focused on hectoring religious people rather than providing positive, constructive alternatives, and also because there was so much internal drama inside it—arguments about “social justice,” people scamming each other, and so forth. Sound familiar? I’m not the first one to have made the connection, another person from the Dead Wild Roses blog caught on as well:
“Being the stupid, whingy-creeptastic counterpoint to feminism isn’t exactly the pinnacle of awesome and given some time and self-awareness most MRA’s should come to realize that. But more importantly it is what the MRA’s don’t do, they don’t organize, they don’t create social structures to help men, they don’t have an ideology that is coherent past a furious fap-fest longing for the 1950’s or earlier when men could be men and women could serve them, or some shit like that.
The current MRA lobby is currently punching far above their weight, given that they are a bitter house divided, and only gain notoriety for doing really asinine stunts which usually involve behaving like sexist bags of douche toward women. Rally on Brave Manosphere Warriors! Continue on your manly pursuit of pissing up that rope and yelling forcefully into the wind. No one with a even the smallest wit of sense cares and rightfully dismisses MRA tomfoolery as soon as it rears its ugly little head.
Now take a look internet Atheism. How different is it from what our courageous manospherians are doing? Oh certainly we’re on the thin edge of the wedge in the online battle against the religious. Take a step back though and look at what you’re accomplishing and keep your dry rope handy (dry rope wicks moisture better).
Without the social organization and structures in place i.e. the stuff that actually changes society, how different are we from the the ill-lauded MRA camp. Nothing changes because you (again) adroitly illustrate how christian fop #2342346 believes in magic and how irrational that stance is in the first place. Did you want a cookie for proving, mostly to yourself, that you are on the side of right and they are on the side of wrong. Piss meet rope.”
G: Patriarchies tend to suck
I’ll end this section with an observation about the world that struck me as another example of how manosphere ideologies are self-defeating, or at least in this case, self-refuting if nothing else. These guys constantly claim about how terrible life is in “feminist-controlled” countries, and how much better things would be if men were in charge. Yet for some reason, I’ve not heard of many MGTOWs or other manospambots making their way over to real, bona-fide patriarchies, like Saudi Arabia or Yemen. In fact, for all the complaining, feminist “dystopias” don’t seem at all to be that bad to live in. Manospherians gloat about how the West will be “conquered” by Islamic migrants or whatever, but the question arises: Why are all those migrants coming over to the West in the first place? You’d think if feminism was that awful all the young Muslim men supposedly flooding the West would want to stay home, but for some strange reason they think dealing with Title IX or women in HR or whatever is less problematic than whatever they’re running from. Ain’t that weird.
By the same token, manospambots loudly declare that men are superior to women and things will be great when artificial wombs allow us to transition to an all-male species, but it seems to me the statistics don’t quite bear that out:
Order it by total, or however you like, really, just remember numbers below 1 = more women, numbers above 1 = more men. There are Eastern European and African countries that aren’t that nice to live in, but Hong Kong has a ration of .86 (at the time of this writing) and it’s pretty nice. Meanwhile, the male-dominated countries? China and India followed MGTOW advice and had pretty high rates of sex-selective abortion of girls for a while, but that hasn’t turned either of them into utopias—they may both be rising powers due to their massive populations, but China is a surveillance state beyond the wildest dreams of even the wackiest Western feminist, and India has plenty of internal religious problems between Muslims, Hindus, and Christians. Notably, both China and India have been rattling sabers quite a bit, which is odd since according to manospherians, a surplus of men should have made both nations enlightened and rational thanks to their lack of female “irrationality.” Yet things aren’t so rosy there, I wonder why. Aside from that, one might look at Arab countries like Qatar and the UAE, which are pretty stable and advanced, as proof that MGTOW on a national scale works. But take a look under the cover and the truth is much darker. These countries are male-dominated in population terms because they’ve admitted so many male migrant workers, who are treated very very badly:
“Qatar is completely dependent on imported labour. These job opportunities are mostly on the lower end of the scale, but are, in all categories, handsomely paid by the standards of the country of origin of most migrant workers. A construction worker may easily make two thousand USD a month (and maybe 10% of that a month), and, on the upper range, a Western professional can easily rake in 20.000 a month.
But the work is far from home and, on the lower end, back breaking and exposed to extreme weather conditions. Workers’ rights are tenuous at best, and even professionals from the West can have their visas revoked at the whim of their employers. The rights they do have are a function of pure, unadulterated labour market supply and demand. Stories of abuse abound.”
So yeah, another manosphere paradise where it turns out other men are exploited and virtually enslaved for the benefit of a small minority. I’ll take my chances of getting falsely accused of rape or whatever in our “feminist dystopia” over the joys of losing my visa to some fat-cat in Qatar.
IV: Broad Experience Brought Me Out of the Manosphere
Still, I’d be lying, and certainly underselling many good friends of mine, if I said that manospherians were the only ones encouraging me to get out of that scene. It’s definitely pretty convincing that so many manospambots themselves saw the bankruptcy of their own ideology and abandoned it, but plenty of other experiences as well as criticisms of the manosphere from outsiders pushed me that way. There were a bunch of female friends I’ve had from way back, and from a wide variety of places, who disproved the (incoherent, as I’ve stated in Section III) stereotypes about women; they went out of their way to help me and others and were generally productive and useful people, a stark contrast to guys like Mark Minter. Sure, I’ve also known plenty of lame women, but if guys like the aforementioned Minter were equally as lame, why should I waste my time on either misogyny *or* misandry if there were at least a few cool gals I could associate with, just like I was better served hanging around cool guys? There were also the women I knew in grad school that I mentioned before, who went out of their way to keep my studies on track, and also recent friends folks can probably see in previous entries on this blog, ladies who’ve given me a variety of professional and personal aid ranging from translating stuff for me from Japanese to English (at sizable personal inconvenience to them), making patches and other content for videogames I enjoy, and so on. Compare that to the manospherians and MGTOWs, who’ve never done anything for me. I might not be the brightest bulb in the box, but I know it’s better to stick with people who do you good than those who don’t.
A: The kinds of men already “Going Their Own Way” don’t have much use for manosphere ideology
That’s not all, though. Most manospherians are pretty homophobic, but remember earlier where I mentioned that “Male Procreation” guy? He didn’t have any problems with gay folks and kind of envied them, actually. Same thing with a few MGTOWs. I’ve met a handful who wished they were gay, and actually one who gave it the ol’ college try, though, uh, it didn’t seem to be working out for him very well ( https://www.reddit.com/r/PunchingMorpheus/comments/a6x35t/ama_im_a_left_wing_redpiller_who_has_gay/ec0bvos/ ). Some MGTOWs didn’t go that far, but did seem to appreciate asexuality. They thought sex and the typical male desire for beautiful women was the source of our downfall, and if we could only purge our sexual desires and become asexual we could truly and undeniably Go Our Own Way and become like Paul Erdos or Nikola Tesla (super mathematicians/scientists who seemed unconcerned with women).
The thing is, there were already gay and even asexual men out there. By the time I was pondering this question, I was shedding my homophobia and right-wing-ness, and it occurred to me that in most respect gay guys and definitely asexuals lived the MGTOW ideal. They didn’t care about women sexually, so according to the MGTOW worldview, in which the only value women had was sex, these guys should have had generally the same attitudes, misogyny, rejection of women, etc. as MGTOW did. The truth, however, was quite different, and in fact many of these guys had perspectives on manosphere ideologies (although sometimes not directly) that were quite enlightening to me. I’ll present here a selection of critiques from asexual and gay brothers that greatly helped refine my own thinking.
There’s an article I found explaining the existence of asexuality and the problems some men have with recognizing it, pretty thoughtful:
Notably, however, the author spent very, very little time complaining about feminism or even arguing about women, which is not an especially MGTOW thing to do, in my experience. That got me to reading more, and I found some more good posts.
“A couple of years ago, I joined a MGTOW board because a few of them happen to be pretty good in the techie dept, but now I think that was a mistake. Apparently to become fully accepted by the MGTOW community, you have to be part of a hive mind in which you’re sexually frustrated, you’re always the victim, and you must never, ever work on improving your quality of life (so you can always have plenty to bitch about). Life, to MGTOW, is one big gripefest.
Oh, and MGTOW absolutely LOVE to blame all their woes on “liberals” (when in fact, most of the things they complain about happen to them as a result of their own bad decisions, usually the result of being narrow minded and bull headed). They really think Ronald Reagan deserves to have his face carved onto Mount Rushmore.”
At the same forum, another fellow raised an excellent point:
“Funnily enough though, if you look at my life, functionally I’m probably pretty close to the description of a MGHOW. But it’s something that’s a natural consequence of simply being highly independent, borderline asexual, averse to any kind of heteronormative relationship mind games, as well as any kind of paradigm which treats people as means to ends in relationships.
Amazingly enough, when you do that, you actually meet awesome women. But of course, the mutual sense of independence means that the sorts of relationships you have with them aren’t going to run to the usual scripts anyway. And that’s why I don’t identify with MGTOW. The entire referential framework is different: MGTOW are bitter at the system – but they still use it as a reference point to how they wish things were – they haven’t really stepped right away from it, to the point where its existence is basically irrelevant to their relationship ideals (or lack thereof?).”
That last bit hit me like a hammer, and brought home the sort of attitude I should have and that the MGTOWs didn’t. For all their talk about “Going Their Own Way,” they hadn’t, really—if they had they likely would have come to the conclusion this guy did, namely that you meet better people (male and female) if you don’t chain yourself to paradigms or worldviews that don’t work for you, and that “chain” can also be rebellion against that worldview rather than simply leaving it behind you eventually. So that’s what I did—I stopped caring about whether or not society “expected” me to have a girlfriend or live my life in some particular way, and I stopped caring about “feminism” or (in a winder sense I’ve brought up before) “SJWs” that didn’t impact me directly or could be avoided easily, and found a much healthier and happier worldview that suited me and me alone as a result.
I also learned quite a bit from gay guys. Even though I’m not gay m’self, the fact that gays could provide a more objective view on male-female relationships than someone in the midst of them or who desired them or even consciously rejected them meant that many gay guys provided thoughtful analyses of gender relationships that were unclouded by either a desire to appease women *or* seething resentment of women, as many MGTOW fell into. I could find some examples when gay guys were talking about a rare gay manospherian’s book, “Androphilia,” and his articles on The Spearhead about being Real Masculine and all that. A few good quotes:
“the most ardent critique of Portland’s SlutWalk would come in the shape of Portland local Jack Donovan, principal writer for THE SPEARHEAD, which extolls itself as the savior website for poor repressed American men because their voice is “barely a whisper in the traditional media, we are consistently portrayed as worthless buffoons and advertisers ignore us.” When Donovan, the androphilic mouthpiece of this “movement” isn’t crying into his protein shake over being ignored, he likes to take aim at anyone who is not like himself.”
This applied to most “manly” manospherians as well as the self-proclaimed “androphile,” Jack Donovan. Both of them, the gays and the straights, made a big deal about being masculine and strong, but as other gay guys like Perry pointed out, whining about people not paying attention to you isn’t really “masculine” or “strong.”
Also see this more sympathetic but still critical review of Donovan’s Androphilia for another good point:
“Though Androphilia is a profound and important book that will almost certainly be ignored in the closed-minded chambers of gender studies departments across the continent, it does have its problems. While the case for reclaiming masculinity and embracing a positive (and distinctly male) gender identity is undoubtedly a persuasive one, it’s also hard to escape the impression that Donovan’s own conception of the masculine ideal is a little too… well, personal. Jack clearly likes sports, military history, physical labor, and violent movies, and wants other gays to get more into these things, too. “I envision a world,” he writes, “where Androphiles become admired as knowledgeable outdoorsmen, avid hunters, successful sportsmen, skilled builders, do-it-yourselfers, shrewd businessmen, and accomplished leaders in their chosen fields,” adding that homos who collect “war and sports memorabilia” would be pretty cool, too.
Now, when I think of personal role models whom I admire for their masculinity (a task Donovan advocates all gays should do), I often think of Mark Steyn, the rugged British-Canadian political columnist. Through his eloquent writing, he continuously champions the same values of personal responsibility, integrity, honor, and tradition that Donovan holds up as male ideals. Yet Steyn’s after-hours interests include singing, Broadway, and fashion. Is he less of a man for it?
I bring this up not to go down some neo-feminist road of how all “gender ideals” are inherently arbitrary, but rather to caution that men are a diverse lot, and their maleness can manifest in a multitude of ways, not all of which may necessarily seem terribly masculine at first glance. While Donovan is right to belittle stagy homosexual airs, and the equally stagy over-compensation of the beard-and-leather set, there’s still a risk of fetishizing (in Donovan’s case, literally) the tastes and hobbies of a particular set of men whose interests stem as much from class and geography as anything else. Liking trucks or hunting might simply reflect the fact that you grew up around such things, while indifference may be just that. I’m open to the idea that someone can be a city-dwelling, cat-loving poet homosexual vegetarian and still retain a strong core of masculinity in their values and behaviour, though I get the impression Donovan isn’t.”
“What are his criteria of masculinity? What does he think of men who do not meet these criteria? Does he conceive of these characteristics as being “naturally occuring” so that men who don’t possess them are just warped by society? So, is it not for women to also be self-reliant and convicted?
And, of course, it’s interesting how vigorously he asserts a “misguided feminist understanding of masculinity,” as if any problems in gay culture are but consequences of the feminist movement and its permutations. In fact, I question his assertion that the problems in gay culture tody are rooted in a problem with gender identity or a gender oriented value system. As has already been pointed out, plenty of straight men, not mention women, also crave instant gratification, pursue empty pleasures, and act irresponsibly.”
See also this post from the “Going to the North” blog:
“In closing I will say that in an ideal world I actually agree with Donovan on one point, in that I think marriage is unnecessray for gays, but only because I think it should be unnecessary for everyone. Marriage is such an archaic and antiquated institution horribly burdened by its origins as a vehicle for transferring women as property between men that I don’t have any great fondness for it. Rather I would see a universal adoption of Sweden’s sambo system that let’s people have their relationships and mutual ownership of property be recognised automatically after a set period of time without any need for explicit state involvement, and gives the same legal protections as marriage does without all of the trappings. In such a system if people want to have commitment ceremonies then have at it. But, ultimately, I don’t project what I think is right or want for myself onto everyone else, and recognise that personal and legal unions are very important to others for reasons I might not understand or agree with. Again, quoting JS Mill, as it doesn’t hurt or affect me why should I object?”
This was an interesting perspective on marriage you don’t see often in the manosphere, including from MGTOWs. It’s just “marriage is terrible, reeeeee!” but this gay fella, reviewing Donovan’s overly broad attack against marriage, noted that there were alternatives that suited everyone better.
Finally, reading up on some of the general concerns gay folks faced (not just societal ones, but within their own communities) also made me suspicious of a lot of manosphere rhetoric. Even completely in the absence of women in terms of sexual relationships or sexual desire, there were and have been rifts among gays that the debate over Donovan’s work touches upon—what role masculinity and femininity have in the community, how prevalent the preferences for each might be, and so on. See these articles:
There’s also the fact that domestic abuse is a problem in gay relationships as well, it’s just not reported as it should be, for a variety of reasons:
Now, most right-wing manospambots would claim this is just proof gays are dysfunctional or whatever. The thing is, by their own admission straight men have a bunch of related problems—manospherians are always screaming at each other over what’s “truly” manly, complaining about being falsely accused of rape or abuse, and so on. But if gay men also have issues like these, that leads one to think that even if feminism didn’t exist, even if women didn’t exist at all and we lived in the Ethan of Athos style utopia a lot of more extreme manospherians claim to want, men would still have a lot of problems.
B: Cogent criticisms from a variety of sources
This long-ass essay is finally coming close to an end, and to build off the previous sub-section, this one is going to be a grab-bag of a wide variety of quotes from a wide variety of sources—blogs, articles, etc.—that point out a lot of the flawed analyses and incorrect data that form many manosphere assumptions, stuff like this helped me break away from that scene as well, though not as much as internal criticisms of it. I’ll quote the best parts of these but you should really read all of them.
“This is just this frankly astounding problem with the MRA. That women do not like having sex and that sex is not fun for them. That somehow the creation of sex toys has made men redundant. Which is nonsensical. As any woman who has tried mixing toys and a man will tell you that a lot of toys get better when used in a relationship. I know it’s not explicit in this piece but the number of MRA who think that this is the reason why women don’t want anything to do with them is mindbogglingly high.
If you think the reason why women do not like you is the ownership of a hitachi magic wand (a device which I am assured is powerful enough to explode your libido) then you have a problem where you compare unfavourably to an inanimate object. Where you see yourself as nothing but an orgasm machine which means that you have lost to industrialisation.
If you cannot fathom why you think you are losing to the industrialisation of the orgasm then the problem is not the machine but the man.”
“But if you want X thing, then you must be prepared to honestly ask, ‘So why am I not getting it?’ and interrogate yourself boldly to see what you’d need to do to get it – whether that’s money, companionship, love, beauty, fresh pancakes – and then do that.”
Instead, what I see is a script: “Just become the alpha male, and had rock-chiseled abs and a white smile, and you will have the world of your dreams.” No. No. Some of those women don’t want rock-chiseled abs. Some of those women don’t want irritating douches who override all their needs with theirs. Some of those women may want irritating douches who override all their needs with theirs, but something else about you isn’t compatible with them.”
A good post from Blazedoxy: https://archive.is/Qe5X1
“Let me try to explain this to you in case you aren’t getting it: you bitch and moan about the fact that women are biologically motivated to be hypergamous, but you don’t hold yourselves responsible of the fact that you’re biologically predisposed not to give a shit about a woman beyond her looks. But instead of holding yourself, the men, responsible for your mate choices by chasing skirts who have nothing to offer you but sexual attractiveness, you pin ALL the blame on the mating preferences of women. Why do I never hear a MGTOW talk at length about the “problem” of male shallowness as being an issue in relationships with women? How come it’s always a rant about how women are hypergamous by nature, and therefore it’s all our fault? The same evo-psych you use to call women hypergamous is the same that calls you just too fucking shallow to care about a woman’s non-physical qualities.”
Another good post from Spherical Bullshit: https://archive.is/Pik9X
“Anti-war protests and campaigns are ten-a-penny, yet no significant contribution to them has been made by prominent “Men’s Rights” activists or movements – and when they are, they’re framed in this rather dishonest way as the fault of women for not dying enough. As Man Boobz has reported recently, some self-styled MRAs are literally saying that women should die in droves to combat the discrepancy. If that attitude strikes you as a reasonable response to a disparity in the gender of soldiers killed, you have some serious issues you need to address.”
Yet another good post from Ozy: https://archive.is/hTVtZ
“Based on this, we are proposing a rule of thumb that we’re calling Ozy’s Law: It is impossible to form a stereotype about either of the two primary genders without simultaneously forming a concurrent and complementary stereotype about the other.
Or, more simply: Misandry mirrors misogyny.”
I’ve also found a lot of good critiques of “The Misandry Bubble,” which as I mentioned previously was considered a foundational manosphere text for some time See this one from thoughtscream:
“Let’s start with a small and amusing thing: the author thinks that most women, pre-feminism, married as virgins. This inherently treats pubescent hormones, urges and the actions resultant as somehow something new. While it is certainly likely that families of privilege and influence were probably sticklers about these sort of things, let’s not forget that the social channels that could possibly uphold and enforce this facet of patriarchy were always rare – in fact, from an economic standpoint, the insistence on virginity was nothing short of dehumanizing exertion of claim. The reason for its insistence was simply to ensure that there were no prior claims upon the object of exchange – no risk, in other words, of somebody else’s genetic capital parasitizing upon your own.
The case for this for most of pre-industrial humanity, however? Hahahaha, right. Because teenagers wouldn’t find time to sneak off into the woods or into unattended barns or behind the tavern’s kitchen for a bit of boot-knocking. Sure. That’s completely believable. If there is any social dogma I’m willing to embrace, it’s the idea that there is no such thing as an ideal social interaction – our ideas of what should happen occur because the majority of us would do otherwise.”
“The next fact he states is that 90% of divorces are initiated by women. The link he has goes to the same article as the previous link; that article has a link in the footnotes for this 90% stat, which goes to another article on a different blog about how toxic women are, which attributes this 90% stat with a link to a dead page.
Anyway, he uses all of these extremely questionable sources (or misrepresentations of decent sources) for the rest of the section of the article. He next announces that it’s ‘all major religions’ that needed to give the beta males reason to aspire, while limiting the hypergamous instincts of women, and so institute marriage. This overlooks the fact that the institution of marriage actually predates most of today’s major religions, and typically occurred in nearly every society, regardless of religion.
The idea that marriage was about providing every beta-male with a wife is certainly false; men continued long after marriage to be seen as expendable by societies compared to women, and his statement that this system, applied over an entire population, is known as ‘civilization’, is a grand and ridiculous oversimplification.
He also states that societies that deviated from this were quickly replaced. Which is completely false, as societies from Burma to India to the Middle East to Europe all had polygamous elements in them that thrived for centuries.
He also says that the pre-civilization era of alpha males hoarding all the women resulted in violent societies because of all the unsatisfied beta males. Right, because civilized human history was all so peaceful.”
Even “neurodivergent” folks have seen holes in its arguments, see a post from Zur-Darkstar and others:
“I could dispute any number of his so-called facts. Polygamy was permitted and even encouraged in many very productive early civilizations. It is practiced in the Bible, in all the early civilizations of Mesopotamia, India, etc. It was really not until the rise of more egalitarian Greek principles that the dynamic began to change in the West. The “incentive to be productive” in the ancient world was survival. There were no labor laws or welfare and the inability to find productive employment could result in slow starvation or a miserable life of barely surviving on the scraps left over (many still live in this condition). I could easily name six alpha male figures. How about Jack McCoy, Special Agent Gibbs, John Cena, Steve Austin, Tony Stark, King Leonidas, Jack Sparrow. There are plenty of other good examples. How about any movie character played by Will Smith, Denzel Washington, Tom Cruise, or Keanu Reeves. How about sports stars like LeBron James, Tom Brady, and Tiger Woods (before the fall). All the author is really saying is that Hollywood isn’t particularly original in the last decade and hasn’t come up with many new characters. I agree. It’s much easier to simply pick up on male archetypes that have existed for several decades, centuries, or milennia. If the author wants to find “new” characters, he should probably look at newer mediums like video games, where new characters are popping up.
The sitcom portrayal of men is quite bad, but then so is that of women, who are tagged as domineering, nagging, controlling characters that make all sorts of demands on the man’s time and energy. This happens because sitcoms rely on the exaggeration of existing dynamics to get a laugh. The man’s stupid, bumbling, farting, drinking, sports watching, lazy tendencies are exaggerated, as are the woman’s nagging, controlling, weight obsessing, irrational, emotional, smothering tendencies.”
“Women are slutty and have multiple sexual partners before getting married. When they do get married they’re all in their late 30s and 40s and ugly. They will never have children and our population will dwindle. Except for an army of rural Sarah Palins that will become the ONLY SIGNIFICANT WHITE POPULATION LEFT IN A SEA OF COLOR!!! And their men won’t want them because they’re old. And fat. And, women are being allowed to divorce willy-nilly, without proper societal disincentive. In places like India, the parents of the bride pay a fee in jewels to the parents of the groom, to insure that the bitch won’t leave her man.
All of the poor men who are divorced by their feminist-empowered women are also now paying a hefty tax of 70% of all their income to ‘child support’ and so are never going to want to be part of a productive society. This is somewhere approaching 30% of all men!!!111 This is why Detroit failed.
All this, of course, only applies to Urban lefto-feminists. Those city women don’t know their place. Rural conservatives however, get married at the right time, have the right number of children, and presumably obey the patriarchy, to the benefit of all.”
(The irony the poster refers to is how the American rural population especially has a host of problems, notably an opioid epidemic, The Futurist just glossed over)
One more for the record. A white nationalist by the name of F. Roger Devlin actually preceded, or was more or less contemporaneous, with Roissy in the manosphere, coming up with the famous term “hypergamy.” Here are some commenters from the Marginal Revolution blog (Dunno about the rest of its content, but these guys raised some good points in this case if nowhere else) pointing out the flaws of Devlin’s most famous essay:
“This paper is riddled with inconsistency and flawed analogy. The biggest such example I’ve encountered thus far is the lottery ticket analogy on page 16.
This analogy compares a young woman who has been date-raped to a man who buys a lottery ticket but does not win. The analogy is flawed, because the young woman did not purchase the lottery ticket of her own free will: she was pressured into buying the lottery ticket by the man, who has misled her as to the odds of winning, and after the “drawing” is concluded walks away with a prize of his own. We do not call this “theft”, it is true, but we do call it “fraud”.
It’s an interesting paper, don’t get me wrong, but there seems to be a great deal of bias in it. The author goes rather far afield to cherry-pick the analogies and observances which support his conclusions, ignoring any evidence that runs counter to it, and improperly emphasising things like “parasitic dating”. Parasitic dating does happen, it’s true, but it’s not exactly common – and it’s generally not prolonged. The reality of modern dating isn’t the picture this paper paints; it paints the picture it needs to draw the conclusion it wants to draw.
I’d like to see a more balanced treatment of the theme. Among other things, Devlin completely ignores the reality that women match themselves to mates, identifying and pursuing the mates they find desirable AND feel confident of acquiring. The scarcity of movie stars is not so great an issue, because women – unlike most men – understand that the vast majority of them don’t get to have one. The average man doesn’t understand why he can’t have Angelina Jolie (after all, she has to have SOMEONE, and he’s someone), but the average woman does understand that she can’t have Brad Pitt – because he has access to a higher-quality pool of potential mates.”
From another commenter:
“The fertility rate has declined in the whole world, not just in the west or in the US, and it seem silly to ascribe this to peculiarities of the sexual revolution in the US in the 1960’s. It has been found by people working in population control that the two things that lead to lower birth rates is improvement in child mortality rates and increase in the independence of women, especially financial independence. It is thought that in hunter gather society’s women found mates to father a child and who would stay around until the child is walking and no longer needs constant care. Then more often than not they both moved on. Because of the long nursing times and strenuous life children were spaced no closer than three or four years. In an industrial economy women have become self supporting and capable of raising children with out help from the father once they reach school age, and birth control allows the spacing of children, so people are simply reverting to what is the natural pattern of sexual behavior.”
C: Watching guys improve themselves outside the manosphere
Over the years, I also encountered a lot of guys from a variety of places who exemplified what the manosphere claims to praise, namely self-improvement and overcoming one’s weaknesses to find professional, social, and even romantic success in life. Yet most of these guys had nothing to do with the manosphere itself, and indeed thought a lot of manosphere ideals would actually hinder their progress; watching them convinced me I didn’t need the manosphere either. A few examples:
“When I compare myself to other men, I see huge differences. I’ve always been skinny and rather awkward. I’ve never been very socially aggressive either. A Red Piller would sooner blame the feminists for taking away my masculinity and tell me that I need to counter-act their voodoo by being, essentially, a dickhead. I never saw it that way. Instead of trying to transform into the same piece of meat that was diverting the gazes away from me, I invested in my strengths, which are intelligence, humor, and individuality. You’ll have to take my word for it, but it’s paid off, and I happen to have some amazing women in my life as a result.”
Another guy, more of a manosphere type, Caleb Jones, thought the “activism” of that scene was pointless:
“All that time, effort, anger, emotion, and possibly money you’re spending trying to fix the world, trying to fight back against left-wingers or right-wingers or feminists or beta males or whoever, could instead be spent…
Learning new skills to better your life.
Getting better and meeting and sleeping with attractive women.
Figuring out how to move out of the country you currently live in that you dislike.
Lifting weights and/or improving your diet to improve your health, appearance, and confidence.
Making more money. Or if you already make decent money, making that same money in less work hours per week.
Trying out new kinds of relationships with women that may make you happier, and/or improving your current relationship skills.
If you have kids, learning how to be a better father. If you don’t have kids, securing your life logistics so that you will be a good father someday.
Every time you get furious at what some blogger or feminist is doing, you take time away from the above items. Getting pissed off about it has a less than 1% chance of actually doing any real difference in society, but any of these above items have at least a 70%-90% of helping you (and those closest to you).
The rational, fair, Alpha Male-centric society is gone and not coming back. Accept it, and stop hand-wringing about it. Improve your own life instead. Get your own shit in order. Live your life and be happy.”
Here’s a self-described nerdy guy pointing out that the manosphere absolutely needed to police or kick out the losers and psychos in its midst or it would fall into disgrace, as it eventually did:
“But in the end, it’s simple. Pick-up artists, you need to think about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, and to what ends. This isn’t slut-shaming or condemning promiscuity – if you’re responsible and there’s consent going both ways, then go ahead, have fun – but verifying that consent and your underlying rationale can only help you build real relationships and encounters that matter. Men’s Rights Activists, there are legitimate grievances you have, but overshadowing them is a cancer in your community and you need to burn it out in the same way the heavy metal community forcibly excised neo-nazi groups. Enough with the manifestos and entitlement and the targets you think are easy because you can say whatever you want online – because continuing to push in this direction only makes the valid cases come across as so much worse. And all the rest of you guys… it only becomes about you when you keep quiet and allow it to keep happening.
You know, there’s a certain amount of controversy behind the phrase ‘Be A Man’, because it’s viewed as asserting a view of hypermasculine outdated nonsense that’s a relic from a bygone age and a dying generation. But for me the phrase still has weight, and it comes down to the underlying principle: responsibility. Accountability. Owning up to your words and actions. Everything else of which I’ve spoken – decency, chivalry, empathy, they all spring from this concept, and yet somehow there is a subsection of my gender that has become terrified of it. Of accepting the consequences, facing the music, realizing they aren’t the center of the universe anymore and thus must learn to live with others instead of above them. And oh dear god it can be hard, especially when society has built in every available method of escaping that obligation, ignoring your power and the responsibility it holds.
So here’s my message: grow up. Be a man. Or if that’s too much, try just being a decent, respectful human being and conscious of someone’s wants beyond your own. Who knows, it might surprise you.”
Here’s a post from a black fella whose experience growing up might have differed from that of most white guys, but also refuted a lot of manosphere agitprop:
“there just weren’t a lot of fathers doing the quotidian work of parenting in my South Philadelphia neighborhood, as if all the adult black men had agreed to go into hiding. And so the teachers; the parents who yelled at us to come inside when it got dark, and who organized the church trips, camps and block parties, were almost always black women. My grandmother scooped me up from soccer practice. My mom taught me the rules of football and tied my ties. My aunt helped me with my long division. Her daughter taught me how to shoot free throws. When something broke, one of these women fixed it.
None of these were feminist acts in and of themselves, and those women would never have identified as feminists, but they were (and remain) giants to me. And I was living in a world, albeit not the one they probably would have preferred, in which the traditional gender roles were queered. My world was largely populated by black women who were fantastically smarter and more competent than I was. That didn’t forestall my fantastically awkward attempts to slide into some ill-fitting molds of masculinity, and I still bought into all those gendered hierarchies even though they were especially abstract for me. But all of this hobbled my capacity to see the eventual assumption of gender roles as foregone or necessary conclusions, and stoked a lingering skepticism of the supposed truths on which they rested.”
D: What would I have done differently?
This is pretty much it, my friends—I tried to keep this essay short, but it kind of got out of hand thanks to all the quotes I couldn’t resist adding in. As I mentioned in the introduction, though, it would have been MUCH longer if I’d spent more time caterwauling about myself and my own experiences. Thankfully, breaking the essay up into sections kept it manageable. All the reasons I’ve described above are why I abandoned not just manosphere blogs but manosphere talking points and ideologies themselves—aside from their adherents too often being spiteful, backbiting losers for me, both the inconsistencies in their beliefs and the often self-defeating nature of those beliefs ended up driving me away from that scene entirely, and into the content, happy place I am now.
It would have been a lot easier if I’d never gotten involved with that foolishness in the first place at all, though. I mentioned some of the reasons it attracted me in the beginning of this essay, but was there anything that would have kept me away from it? I think there might have been one thing.
During the time I started drifting towards…not the manosphere, actually, but the right-wing, “anti-SJW” scene (which primed me to accept manosphere garbage), I had a lot of friends of both genders close to me in my age, but not many older male friends who had really been around the block (so to speak) and thus had a great deal of experience (and accomplishment) both in terms of relationships *and* professionally, just general practical, real world experience. So I didn’t quite have anyone I could talk to who could use that wealth of experience, or more specifically the perspective and objectivity that comes with age, to look at my reactions and my engagement with some of the stuff I’d seen and tell me I was being irrational and immature. Only later in life, both online (as my relationships with folks in the Castlevania fandom grew deeper) and offline (as I solidified my dissertation committee at graduate school, wherein the professors, who had *really* been around the block, guided me not just academically but personally as well), did I start meeting and hanging around older guys who could give me the sort of advice I would have done well to heed when I was younger—the sort of advice that would’ve kept me away from the “anti-SJW” rathole, and by extension the manosphere’s siren songs of resentment and anger.
So if there’s one piece of advice I would give to younger guys who’ve wandered to my blog, it’s this: Try to find a community, preferably offline but online works as well, devoted to some hobby, interest, or pursuit where some degree of knowledge, experience, or actual expertise is held in esteem. If you like videogames, find a forum or something where programmers who’ve been around for a while, or where people who know a lot about the background of certain videogames (or the history of the industry in general) are praised. Or find forums dedicated to boating, bikeriding, guns or shooting, even, where folks who’ve been around and seen a lot and demonstrated expertise in whatever they’re passionate about for at least a few years. Don’t go to a general “men’s forum” for that kind of thing, though—MGTOW ones are in that vein, and the problem with those is that they have no bar for a quality member besides just being a man and holding the same general opinions (on women or other things) they do, rather than demonstrated expertise or usefulness. Thus, they get filled with losers and fakers, as I described in earlier sections, and you can’t get good advice from such people.
On online or offline communities (preferably the latter, but even the former can work if the members need to really demonstrate some expertise to gain respect) where being useful or knowledgeable actually counts for something, on the other hand, you’ll be able to find a few older guys who’ve demonstrated competency and experience. Try making friends with them, getting close to them, or at least avoid pissing them off so they’d be fine giving you advice not just on particular hobbies, professions, or interest, but also on life in general. Friendships or even acquaintances with those types of guys can be worth their weight in gold for younger guys. In general, you don’t get to be accomplished after a period of many years by being resentful, stewing in bitterness, and avoiding self-improvement. Those kinds of older guys can help you navigate contemporary society (both in terms of gender relations and a variety of other factors) while warning you away from the kinds of grifters and psychos you see in the manosphere.
I’m not gonna say I’m one such old guy—most of the really smart ones were able to avoid getting involved with the manosphere in the first place all on their own. But at the very least, even if I was dumb to make as many mistakes as I did, I was smart enough to learn from ‘em. So here’s hoping this tl;dr essay can help at least one person learn from my mistakes too. If it can, I’ll be happy—and I’ll consider it the best thank-you I can give to guys like Thumpy and Pook, as well as all the other critics of the manosphere and my friends online and offline, for helping me move forward from my mistakes.