A comment on feminism

Discussion in 'Women's Issues' started by curious_angel, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. curious_angel

    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Messages:
    1,094
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    12
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    England
    Verified:
    Photo
    This comment on feminism from a male columnist, caught my eye today.

    "..Feminism may have posed women some hard questions and tough choices, but it's been nothing but upside for men. If you visit any society that still boasts a two-tier social system with insecure, macho and status-conscious men, you'll see women who are wary and distant around them, but who are incredibly solid, amused and supportive of each other. Where the sexes are equal, men get twice as many friends who have opinions, aspirations, expectations about happiness and careers and sex, who tell jokes and share the load. Where is the downside in that?.."


    AA Gill, The Sunday Times. Apologies, I can't link to the article as it's a subscription site.



    A common-sense view?
     
  2. bananaclubcock

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    Messages:
    197
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    14
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Eastern U.S.
    Yup, I think it is common sense. "Nothing but upside" is too categorical, but I think Gill is right that almost all men benefit enormously from their societies attempts to respect women as equals. I think men in societies that have made less of an effort at equality are a lot more miserable, for the reasons Gill listed and others.

    Thanks for posting that. I was tempted earlier to post press on Ogi Ogas book that quoted Ogas as claiming that feminism was the "anti-viagra". That has not been my experience, but it is good to see others claim the same.
     
  3. L_egit

    L_egit Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2010
    Messages:
    265
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Toronto (ON, CA)
    Sexual statistics show that your assertions are the reverse of reality.

    I don't really intend on discussing a this topic here, but please recognize that 'women' and 'men' are incredibly misleading groups. There are men and women of different social statures, statuses and positions in society, and the changes heralded by feminism have not treated all of them equally.

    In general, those who were well positioned to do well are doing better. Attractive, socially positioned men now an extended rutting period in a society with far less redistributive programs. Lesser positioned males find themselves on the end of a worldview which paints them as violent, creepy, predatorial and immoral. Attractive women how have a duality of financial and sexual power. Lesser inclined ones now have aspirational media making them feel worthless to exploit their new position as independent consumers.
     
  4. Guy-jin

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Messages:
    3,835
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    669
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Planet Earth
    The mountain of evidence you just posted is certainly supporting your stance.
     
  5. galaxus

    galaxus Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    878
    Likes Received:
    1
    definite common sense. There is no debate.
     
  6. bananaclubcock

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    Messages:
    197
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    14
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Eastern U.S.
    I'm pretty good with statistics and I can't fathom a set of stats that would suggest what you are saying. But please share if you can.


    I agree 'women' and 'men' are incredibly misleading groups, if you mean they can be some of the most deceptive creatures around. I hate lies!

    I agree not all men and women have the same status or position in society. In terms of feminism not treating all of them equally, I can imagine a few interpretations, but I'm not sure how feminism's being unequal in impact really negates my points or AA Gill's points.

    Much of what you say here I agree with, I just don't think it is due to feminism. A lot of this is coincident with other political currents, particularly in North America and some other Anglo-Saxon countries. There are egalitarian societies that have issues with sexism and there are feudal societies with sexism and all other imaginable combinations. I think here you are just noting that there is a lot of indifference to the situation of unfortunate men (at least in North America) and I would agree.

    I use the Betty Friedan definition of feminism: it's the radical idea that women are people, too. The original quote, the one curious_angel asked about being "common-sense" is just highlighting that women have capabilities and that their using them is likely to be a net positive for the men of the world.
     
  7. nudeyorker

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Messages:
    42,918
    Likes Received:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    NYC/Honolulu
    curious_angel it most certainly is common sense but unfortunately common sense is not the norm for most of the inhabitants on this planet when it comes to this or any other social, economic, political, religious or ethical discussion.
     
  8. lepetitprince

    lepetitprince New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United States
    I think it's going a bit far to state that it's been an unequivocal gain for men. For example, previously men could expect that women would do all the housework, childcare, etc. But having women do all this work and nothing else is wrong for the same reason that having black slaves do it all is wrong.

    Now we as a society still have a ways to go, but the a woman's ability to become something other than a housewife, secretary, school teacher, or nurse has been a clear gain to society, but most importantly it's been a gain to women who were previously prevented from realizing their aspirations as individuals.
     
  9. L_egit

    L_egit Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2010
    Messages:
    265
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Toronto (ON, CA)
    Like I said, I don't really feel like getting into a tit for tat snoozefest on a penis forum regarding feminism. Feel free to snipe and feel good about yourself, though.

    One comment made earlier has worth, though, that of the question of concurrence of other trends. While there's certainly a point to made about the difference between correlative and causative effects, the main structural change caused by feminism has to do with the expansion of western labor pools, and the subsequent devaluation of work. The main parties who benefit from cheaper work? Employers.

    The second wave of feminism coincides directly with the end of significant wage growth in the states, followed by thirty years of stagnant earnings increases. Oddly enough, this period is co-existent with the end of the expansion of entitlement programs in most western nations and the beginning of the implementation of specific need-based programs, like government funding for maternity leave as opposed to universal government welfare. This indicates that the progressive movement was derailed and turned into chunks of individualistic lobby groups, instead of a broad coalition of citizens banding together to achieve social progress. Our replacement for progress has been justice, in the moniker of social justice. Social justice as a concept, however, requires an unjust, a demon to oppose.

    Feminism seduced outlines some of these trends:
    Paradigm - Feminism Seduced: How Global Elites Use Women's Labor and Ideas to Exploit the World

    Other data regarding the sexual market can be found in my last 2-3 posts, I believe, but the source is fairly informal. There are, however, a number of social psychological and biological journals which substantiate the points individually, but searching for them is a bit more than this forum requires as a burden of proof.

    Anyways, have fun believing that increased competition means increased friends.
     
    #9 L_egit, Jul 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  10. lepetitprince

    lepetitprince New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United States
    Easily overlooked but women benefit from paid work. Prior to being exploited by employers, women were exploited by men, but without pay.

    Since women benefit and employers benefit, it is difficult to conceive of ways to prevent women from entering the labor force without rather illiberal quite restrictive laws.
     
  11. D_Hey Sailor

    D_Hey Sailor New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2011
    Messages:
    341
    Likes Received:
    1
    Declaration of ignorance: I apparently know all too little about feminism.

    My only first hand experience with the feminist movement was via a university philosophy class where we would be introduced to select issues, and then given essays written from various perspectives to examine. Perhaps it was just because the issues at hand were things like war, euthanasia, abortion, aboriginal rights and so on, but feminism never struck me as shooting for a 50/50 split. I tend to think any movements of empowerment tend to err on the side of caution by overdoing it -- that way they have some bargaining room when it comes to settlement.

    Also the obligatory stereotype: hairy armpits :wall:


    I did read some *really* good short stories and fiction writings done by feminists for some of my media classes though!
     
  12. L_egit

    L_egit Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2010
    Messages:
    265
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Toronto (ON, CA)
    Its more like "some" women benefit and "some" employers benefit. On the balance, most women are probably better off financially, and most large employers are better off. Smaller employers and entrepreneurs, however, due to reduced margins, have less of a competitive advantage by putting their own personal time into a project.

    Simple changes in some base legal doctrines could substantially modify how these social forces are channeled through institutions. As for the illiberality of laws, that would depend on who's liberal conception of freedom you use. If you use the Hobbesian-sense, perhaps. If you use any of the more socially relevant models which use economic conditions and other forms of coercion as relevant, the answer stops being clear.

    On the issue of whether or not increased financial power in the face of decreased sexual power and decreased moral power is 'beneficial' depends on which metric you use to measure benefit, which itself depends on what goal you ascribed to society. The subjectivity of the answers here are the reason I don't really want to 'get into it' here. No point to it.
     
  13. mephistopheles

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2006
    Messages:
    1,324
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    58
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Hell
    If it weren't for feminism we wouldn't have Riot Grrl.

    Or a lot of other great things for that matter.
    It works in practice, so whats not to like?
     
  14. BRM

    BRM
    Verified Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2011
    Messages:
    75
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    98
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange (NSW, AU)
    Verified:
    Photo
    Curious angel- great post, it's definitely benefited all involved. As a male I am very thankful that I can have so many female friends and that my girlfriend and I can have such equality in our relationship. However, there's always a few extremeists out there who do more harm than good and have tried to take feminism too far.
     
  15. B_curiousme01

    B_curiousme01 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2009
    Messages:
    1,079
    Likes Received:
    5
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Dreamplane
    Great post! I think it is common sense.

    Women do not want to have rules and laws created by men that are against us! Seems perfectly reasonable to me.

    We've made much progress, but we're still far from equal regardless of what society wants us to think.
     
  16. lepetitprince

    lepetitprince New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United States
    Actually you can categorically state that all women benefit, since having the option of financial independence is of value even if it not exercised. Also, as I see it the only way that firms will be harmed due to lower margins is if some firms hire equally-productive women at lower cost (due to discrimination against women) and in turn offer the firm's goods or services at lower costs, i.e. all the harm accrues to firms that refuse to hire women. So you've pointed out that it also helps consumers. This process will continue until equally productive men's and women's wages are equal and firms that refuse to hire women cease to exist. That is unproblematic.

    The same happened with blacks, Jews, Irish, etc.

    Such as?

    Such simple changes might be harder to enact than it might sound: Firms will be opposed, since their labor costs will rise. Consumers will be opposed, since the goods they buy will become more expensive. And women will be opposed, since they would lose a great deal of independence.

    Womens' sexual submission to men requires total lifelong material dependence of women upon men. This is a form of economic coercion. And it's not a necessary one. However, until there is a practical alternative to work for wages, protests against the economic coercion of paid work are not serious.

    You could propose income support programs, but these would fix an actual problem: economic risk. They would not address your problem of women's insufficient sexual submissiveness, since women would still have the financial independence they previously lacked.

    Regarding political theory, under Hobbes' social contract, subjects have no freedom. As a result of the social contract, the sovereign holds unlimited power. What he gives in return is order, wellbeing unattainable in the state of nature, i.e. prior to the existence of the state. Hobbes led the way to liberal social contract theories from Kant to Rawls and modern secular political theory generally, but that's not the same thing.

    Which relevant political theorists says that we need to change government policies in order to make men more able to order women around? Rawls? Nozick? Walzer? Sen?

    This problem is one of the things that liberalism handles pretty well: everyone should (roughly) be able to do what they want. Now when there are interpersonal conflicts, there are hairy issues, which is why liberalism spans the gamut from liberal socialism to mixed economy liberalism to libertarianism. However in a liberal society what you cannot do is say that one group of people ought to be inherently subordinate to another group.
     
  17. L_egit

    L_egit Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2010
    Messages:
    265
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Toronto (ON, CA)
    Women had the option of financial independence prior as well, albeit through a different set of choices.

    Structural changes in the available workforce have never been to the same scale, nor does your suggestion that there will be an eventual equalization bear any fruit. Statistical evidence shows the reverse: They haven't. What's ended up happening is actually the reverse. Young urban women who graduate from university are actually making substantially more money than men of equal educational background, yet wages as a whole are stagnant.

    Additionally, there's economic evidence that in the case of black workers, federal economic mandates have actually made slowed the process of social acclimatization and wealth accumulation.
    If, for instance, we change the nature of legal personhood and make it a truly distinct regime from the classification of natural persons, as Vermont has been attempting to do, then you begin re-internalizing costs which our current legal system has intentionally externalized from our corporate structures. 'Firms' will be opposed? Depends which ones. Those that are now lifted of the burden of paying healthcare costs stemming from the factory dumping shit in the local lake will be happy. The dumper? Not so much. Most offshore consumers will, because they're generally unaffected by the externalities. Exceptions can be see to this in the mining, chemical, textile and oil/natural gas industries, who typically have international externality profiles, or operate internationally. The taxpaying base, including women? No. Vermont's opinion polls show this effect to the letter.

    Not to quibble, but you're entirely wrong unless you attempt to mix definitions of freedom. Using Hobbes' definition of freedom, his subjects have the maximum possible freedom. His work, however, was released during a civil war and was intentionally framed with certain premises, such as that death is so egregious that it cannot be bargained against. Because of that certain other concepts are not immediately developed. If however, you retool the value of life in his framework, rebelling and overthrowing a sovereign who has become an opponent of those who authorize him is perfectly within one's freedom to act. This type of existential outrage, it should be noted, is what animates the Tea Party. Whether or not progressives should have a similar outspoken front (Minus the guns at rallies) is a decent question.

    Many professions operate under non-wage renumeration contexts. In fact, even wage based positions are being phased out in favor of contracted work, but that's largely a tax and healthcare thing in the states.

    This is a classic false dilemma. An alternative to current mainstream feminist philosophy doesn't need to involve forgetting the core analytical tools feminism brings, or the benefits that equality brings. As it stands now, however, people still order others around. The core issue eroding equality is wealth disparity, not gender, yet there's a type of Zizek envisioned masking of the phenomenon via cultural capitalism. Yet now that the Hegel-consciousness, as expanded to a class in the Marxist sense has been segmented, it substantially loses its social force.

    Why would you willingly support redistributive programs if you're in the top 50% of the population unless you identify yourself as the same as those in the lower 50%? Similarly, feminists have trouble coming to terms with distinctly male issues because of similar identity based clefts. Progressives, however, do not (to the extent that we ignore multiple-consciousnesses).

    Actually, liberalism is pretty horrendously inept at dealing with most modern problems. Its a primarily economically driven philosophy which at its core attempts to reduce the cost of resource distribution by limiting binding social force in that area of society. Sadly, this came about as the response to the need of industrializing nations to develop land which prior had been held under systems of tenure. When there's no conflict between resource allocation, liberalism is fantastic. When, however, there's the issue of multiple creators, appropriators, or any number of complex property concerns, the system breaks down. Rapidly. Property in marriage, partnerships, held in indivision, held for the public, held and then refined, etc all are poorly defined in western legal systems. This is one of the reasons why atomized financial power has become a requirement for most modern lives in the west, but this was not always the case, and is not always the case in other areas of the world. (The institution of property is another such institution which could be modified to change how certain social forces act. The one I mentioned prior was the institution of the person. Excuse my civil law terminology, because some of these terms run under different monikers in the US and the UK.)

    I'll stop there, but I could go on. As a general comment, note how the premises of the argument being slightly different result in wildly different outcomes. I'm sure we're both progressively minded and have the material improvement of the human condition in mind, but as I said earlier, the exact vision of what social progress entails changes the outcome. I think a lot of people have heard echoes of a number of debates, then have extrapolated backwards through their preferred conclusions to reach unexamined premises.

    Given that the main topic of discussion here is penises, further analysis to determine the underlying axioms, then apply the scholastic method to them is a bit over what's required, because I'd rather not write out someone's history of thought paper for them.

    EDIT: GAT DAYME that's long. TL;DR: Its more complicated than that.
     
  18. lepetitprince

    lepetitprince New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United States
    Let's suppose they did. Now they don't want that.

    Have you got those statistics? What about lifetime statistics?

    This has nothing to do with women entering or leaving the work force.

    Wages refer to payment in exchange for labor. And this is beside the point. You objected to economic coercion, eliding that what you are in favor of, sexual submission of women resulting from material dependence on men, is at least as coercive as what you oppose, and furthermore the sort of economic coercion you oppose you haven't got a remotely feasible alternative to.

    I was not posing a dilemma, I was asking you which modern political philosophies you can point to that support your position. I named four prominent modern political philosophers as suggestions pretty sure that they do not.

    Right...What's your alternative?
     
    #18 lepetitprince, Jul 27, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2011
  19. Guy-jin

    Gold Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Messages:
    3,835
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    669
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Planet Earth
    You sure have a funny way of showing that you don't feel like getting into a tit for tat snoozefest on a penis forum regarding feminism.
     
  20. L_egit

    L_egit Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2010
    Messages:
    265
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    11
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Toronto (ON, CA)
    I know, right? I'm a sucker for fun debates.
     
Draft saved Draft deleted