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Jan 31, 2023Liked by Richard Hanania

I wonder to what degree compulsive lib owning leads to cons accepting the lib Equality/blank slate framing. In my early 20s I was at a party where a drunken girl French kissed me before passing out. The next several times I saw her I told her I was traumatized by her sexually assaulting me to which she profusely and sincerely apologized. I wasn't actually bothered at all, but I wanted to stick it to a lib. I eventually gave up and "accepted" her apology since I felt guilt about my needless, partisan driven sadism. It was only later when my dad said "she was probably into you before your stunt" that I realized I might have fumbled a chance to have sex with an attractive, nice girl because I wanted to own the libs.

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Fascinating story, your dad sounds wise. Shows the dangers of mindlessly owning the libs.

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The Jewish doctrine of Marxism rejects the aristocratic principle of Nature . . . denies personal worth, . . . contests the significance of folk and race . . . withdraws from mankind premise for its existence and culture.

卐 “The Jewish doctrine of Marxism rejects the aristocratic principle of Nature and replaces the eternal privilege of power and strength with the mass of numbers and their dead weight. Thus it denies personal worth, contests the significance of folk and race, and thereby withdraws from mankind premise for its existence and culture.” ― Mein Kampf 卐

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You forgot the most important mathematical equation in history: pussy>owning the Libs.

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At the time I disagreed, but now that I'm older and hornier than I am hateful I agree. In hindsight, if I absolutely had to own the libs I probably should have exclusively trolled lib men, which might have even led to unexpected sexual success from outcompeting a male rival.

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I mean, having had sex with her then wouldnt make you less horny now, but you can remember the fact that you owned a lib for the rest of your life.

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Mostly. I have kept quiet about politics to get intimate with a girl. But if she starts about politics, I will never pretend to agree just to get sex. I ended a friendship - well, an acquaintance - with a girl last year for this reason. I knew she was a leftist, but we never talked about politics. I ignored her various beliefs. Until she brought up "racism" when we were having coffee. How could she not see the clues that I was on the opposite side from her in politics? There were several ways for her to know that. But whatever. It was meaningless to keep having coffee once a month.

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You're lucky she brought it up while you were drinking coffee and not while she was bringing it up.

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thank you

pussy>owning anything

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What about owning property? I think there's a positive correlation between that and pussy.

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for sure

but if u had to pick 1...

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Pick a house?

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Sleep in hers (A). Then in hers (B). ....

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The divorce courts agree.

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This is a funny and endearing story, but it does follow a bizarre trope that I often see here. That is: conservative makes up a thing that isn't true, and thinks it's a refutation of some liberal argument.

Just on the face of it, you can see that that's a bit silly, right? Untrue stuff isn't ever going to be a good refutation. If we're wrong (I'm a progressive), then facts will show that we're wrong. But made up stuff never can. I honestly don't get why this is such a big thing in right wing discourse. The place it's seen most often right now is when a conservative goes up to a trans person/trans rights campaigner and says, "I identify as a monkey" or something. That line of argument might actually be fruitful and interesting if carried out sincerely (and the left has this argument, among ourselves, all the time) but it always seems to be approached in a spirit of untruth.

Anyway, on this specific example: you've just made the argument for why we should drink and drive. A girl kissed you without your consent once, and it was fine. I drank and drove once, and it was fine. Therefore high consent bars are always wrong. Therefore rules against drink driving are always wrong.

So, I want to suggest to you that you didn't in fact manage to own a lib, because if you have to make up stuff to win an argument... you didn't really win it.

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There are people that unironically identify as animals, usually wolves, dogs, or cats. Look it up lol

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Great comment. One thing: are you sure you're over your lib-owning phase? Are you actually a fan of Cromwell? Because if not, that's a pretty lib-own-y handle (never mind that Cromwell coded very left in his own time for killing the king and disestablishing the monarchy).

I ask because I recently read a semi-interesting defense of Cromwell, mainly to the effect that his crimes in Ireland weren't nearly as bad as is popularly supposed/remembered, and I'm interested in learning more.

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Nah, not fully. I am a fan of his as a historical figure, though I'm actually a very libertine person so pretty far from the actual guy. It's from years ago when I was doing a bit on a forum to contradict monarchists and national socialists.

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Hilarious. Owning the NRx, on the other hand, is ALWAYS worthwhile.

When your philosophy revolves around selecting the special chosen one to be the first king and taping a USB stick with an NFT that unlocks the nukes behind his balls, you know you've lost the plot. I literally read that, by the way, in Moldbug's 'stack. What a nutjob, but he does have an entertaining writing style.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

You know, I'm practically an MRA, but the guy hit an event horizon for me ditching his pregnant girlfriend. I mean, women play all kinds of games but unless she tricked him into it...

And his ideas are pretty silly too. Much like Marx, he did a nice takedown of Western classical liberalism and managed to suggest a replacement that was much dumber.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

I've come to conclude that coding political factions before the French Revolution as "right" or "left" is usually about as edifying as coding them Yankees fans or Red Sox fans.

Cromwell and his allies generally saw themselves as traditionalists, defending the traditional liberties of Englishmen against tyrants and the traditional authority of Scripture. Actual leftists see themselves as progressives, anti-traditionalists.

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If you really want to own a lib in this fashion, wait until *after* you've done the deed then reveal that you're a wrong-thinker who voted for Blumpft or some such. (Don't actually do this).

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Maybe your father didn't hear the part about "drunken...before passing out." Was she into you or into whoever happened to be there, and would it have been a sexual experience worth having?

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How did you know she was a Lib?

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She's an upper middle class secular Jewess and professed a bunch of Obama era liberalism.

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And French? Im fairly dubious about this story, not least because if she’s so drunk as to pass out, modern sensibilities would make her the victim.

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deletedFeb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023
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Oh, I remember it, and it was a major factor pushing me to the right.

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What if you’d gotten her pregnant and she’d sued you for child support. Would it have been worth it then?

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This is why abortion should of course be legal, but U.S. conservative circles have been completely taken over by religionuts who want to catch that one "moral high ground" that doesn't belong to the Left. Moral high ground being defined by leftist ideology, of course, that all are precious and great and perfect. "God doesn't want..." Funny, abortion was a widespread practice in Biblical times, and the Bible says nothing against it. Of course families needed it then, like we do now. Because people HAVE SEX. As much as old hags of both sexes may hate that. And people don't want to be saddled with a child they don't want, simply because they have sex.

In 2021, abortion-tied referendums in five red states, swing state Michigan, and two blue states, overwhelmingly favored the pro-abortion side. 70% of midterm voters said abortion was a big issue, and 62 percent of those favored a national pro-abortion law. With the Webster ruling in 1989 opening the door to Roe being overturned, the GOP suffered several high-profile, humiliating defeats, with polls showing that abortion rights motivated White suburbanites and independents to vote Dem. Today it's the one issue where suburban White women aren't told by the Left to keep quiet, like they are about CRT and transvestites.

More about those state elections:

https://www.takimag.com/article/midterm-for-the-worse-part-i-fetus-do-yo-stuff/

Which we also saw in the 2022 midterms. People don't want someone to force them to have their lives ruined just because they have sex. But Trump surrendered to the GOP, letting them appoint SC justices entirely based on abortion opposition, ignoring the mass immigration issue that got him elected. So we got justices that vote with the Left in removing border obstacles, while issuing a ruling seen as endandering abortion, in an election year. Genius. But I digress.

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You are reading way too much into my question. I don’t think you were raped or she should have been punished. Similarly, if she had said she wasn’t in the mood, and you had said “come on baby” and taken off her bra and she hadn’t resisted AND you had a previous consensual relationship AND you haven’t used violence to make her fear you, that wouldn’t be rape either. It would be intimate partners nudging one another towards what they want.

The problem with these nudges is details like birth control can get left out. And given that unwanted pregnancy is a well understood consequence of hetero sex, I think that’s a check mark in the “let’s talk plainly before we risk making a baby” column.

I don’t think any single sexual act is worth 18 years of child support. But then, I prefer pickleball to work

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Hard to disagree with this essay. A lot of unpopular truth bombs. I'd add 2 points:

1) The biggest problem with the teen boy older woman dynamic is the fact that a teen boy can't fully think through the ramifications of pregnancy. If my teenage son got a teacher pregnant and she chose to keep the baby, there is nothing I could do about it even if I wanted her to terminate the pregnancy (which, hypothetically, I would not). " But Jose!" you say, "Your son could just as easily get a classmate pregnant!". But me being the authoritarian patriarch that I am, I can control to some extent my son's ability to spend alone time with the opposite sex. A teacher attracted to my absolute Chad of a son could potentially manipulate circumstances beyond my control in order to seduce him.

2) With respect to fertility, traditional Christian teaching on sexuality had a pretty awesome track record prior to the sexual revolution and contraception, and I think it will continue to outpace the Nietzschean libertarian rationalists. Let me know if Aella successfully raises 2 children with active fathers and I'll buy u a beer.

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I'd be fine if my teenage son fathered a baby, in fact it would be great.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

1) Do you think the average 15-year-old boy is emotionally mature enough to raise and provide for a child? I certainly don't.

2) Even if your 15-year-old son IS emotionally mature enough to raise and provide for a child (and willing), do you have any good reason to think that his 25-year-old teacher will want to settle down with him? (Even in the counterfactual world in which such a relationship would be legal and non-stigmatised.) Most likely not: she raped him because she found him sexually desirable, not because she thought he'd be a good father.

So most likely your teenage son will play no part in raising his child, even if he wants to. As I'm sure you're aware, children raised by single mothers have worse outcomes on virtually any metric you can name than children raised by a married couple: educational attainment, employment, health etc. (https://www.brookings.edu/opinions/are-children-raised-with-absent-fathers-worse-off/). And if the mother is particularly vindictive, she may force him to pay child support for the child he fathered at far too young an age to appreciate the realities of the situation, meaning his wages will be garnished until he's 33 (https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/09/02/statutory-rape-victim-child-support/14953965/). Sounds like your son AND his child have been put at a massive disadvantage because of the selfish indiscretions of a horny teacher. And you still think this situation is "great"?

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Well I have a philosophical disagreement. I think it’s better to bring a life into this world even under circumstances that aren’t the best. Also, the kids need fathers research is very bad any way, doesn’t take into account genes, so my son would be different. I would help out with the kid financially.

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>I think it’s better to bring a life into this world even under circumstances that aren’t the best.

I'm not an anti-natalist, but glossing this situation as "circumstances that aren't the best" strikes me as a glaring understatement.

>doesn’t take into account genes

Even allowing that a major contributing factor to the poor outcomes experienced by children raised by single mothers is genetic, half of your hypothetical grandchild's genes would come from a woman who displayed a reckless disregard for the law and social convention by impulsively raping a student for whom she was acting in loco parentis. Your son could be Gandhi, but HIS son certainly won't.

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Feb 5, 2023·edited Feb 5, 2023

> Also, the kids need fathers research is very bad any way, doesn’t take into account genes

This is worth a post, too, since no one else is touching the topic (not even the people I'd expect to).

I do think the career-family tradeoff is ridiculous at that age, though, so I don't think you're right about the specific topic of discussion. Most careers expect you to go through a multi-year apprenticeship phase in which you are neither paid well enough nor provided the necessary flexibility to raise children. If you can square it with your job, that's great but hardly representative. If you're living off welfare, I guess that also works. In all other cases, you're closing some of the major doors in your life.

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And you call other people disordered? I hope you plan on picking up his child support tab.

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Is this theoretical or do you have kids?

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I had two friends who became dads in high school. Both obviously had it pretty hard at the time.

Now? I don't know the latest, but at last i saw, one was doing great (good career and great relationship with his daughter) and the other not so much.

Honestly, I think the biggest factor in determining their future was how their parents raised them, not the fact that they themselves became parents at a young age.

I think the biggest problem in teenage pregnancies is that usually at least one of the parents is completely unfit to be raising children - possibly with mental issues. Neither of the men I knew stayed with the mother, and arguably for good reason.

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I was in horror of becoming a parent at 18 but, with two decades' hindsight, I think my life would have converged on a pretty similar outcome if I'd become a parent at that age.

I'd probably have a bit less wealth but I'd have an adult child which I think would be nice.

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Don't you think it would seriously mess up his life? He'd have to avoid college to get a job, sticking him in the working class...which while I don't know your wife (and it's none of my business) given that your skillset seems to lie heavily in verbal ability (at which you are excellent!) seems like it would be a bad fit, given the apple usually doesn't fall far from the tree.

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Why are colleges and jobs mutually exclusive to you? I worked FT while going through school and am most certainly not in the working class.

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I guess.

Honestly Richard's kid will probably be OK. I just have my doubts it would be as easy as it sounds.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

Great question about that stemming from another reply of mine elsewhere. The law would likely free your minor son of virtually all responsibility to the child. As his father, what would you expect?

I'd expect him to act like a father, but I can also see how that might be impracticable.

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deletedFeb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023
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I wish I had a kid at 15, today he’d be 22, we could be like buddies.

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Richard, I look forward to every essay. I find them luminous, insightful, and playfully shocking. But, this comment I find mind bogglingly naive, verging on plain stupid.

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You sure you'd have the kind of career that allows you to walk away from academia to be a successful right-wing intellectual? Or would you be working some dumb office job and sounding off with the sort of really clever arguments that just piss off HR?

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I think it would have done me some good in the long run. I eventually would have found a way to maximize my abilities and I’d have grown up faster. I left it until the rather milquetoast age of 39 before my first kid was born. But my wife is ten years younger than me so it wasn’t too big a deal.

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10 years younger! Impressive sir! How'd you pull that one off? Alpha? That old standby, $?

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Feb 2, 2023·edited Feb 2, 2023

Aella, herself? She might raise children with *2* active fathers! Her own data shows her career has an expiration date; if there is one thing Aella isn't it is stupid. She'll probably take up with a relatively-stable client and wealthy client (or two) and disappear from view. She's the rare woman sex positivity works for.

Quite a few of the Nietzschean libertarian rationalists get good tech jobs and settle down eventually. There's a reason the philosophy (almost) only appeals to male nerds.

But I agree with 2. Problem is those 2 thousand years were before the pill. I won't count out anything with a 2000-year track record but we are likely to see some change.

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To the extent that "desire to have children" (rather than "desire to simply have sex") is determined by genetics, breeders will out-reproduce libertines in a way they couldn't have before the pill. For those choosing to have children, traditional monogamy is probably going to be the most successful strategy.

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Unless vat babies change the whole dynamic

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I don't think it will. In any scenario where humans have control over reproduction, the "desire to have more children" going to have to be selected for or else we die out.

And regardless of how the baby comes into the world, giving them a mother and father in a monogamous marriage is still the best way to ensure their best emotional and social development.

There are also other social benefits to monogamy, aside from childrearing.

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Vat babies could use sperm and eggs from the highest-IQ, most genetically healthy people available, outweighing the advantages of optimal nurture.

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Sure, and those high IQ vat babies will still benefit from being raised in a traditional family structure. There aren't a lot of ways to improve IQ in children, but many ways to harm it. Raising them in a sub-optimal home environment is a great way to nullify a child's genetic advantages.

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On "50 Shades of Grey" - one empirically observed difference between women's and men's sexuality is that women are more likely to be excited / aroused by pornography that doesn't represent what they want sexually. There's more of a disconnect between the stimulus and the desire. For instance, lesbians are sometimes turned on by gay male porn. The sadomasochism in "50 Shades" clearly excited a lot of female (and male) readers, but figuring out how many of those readers would actually like to have that kind of relationship - somewhere between 0% and 100% - would take research, not just intuition.

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> ... (and male) readers

I could not make it past the first page. I asked around about this in the past years and not found a single men that got much further. Most women I asked read it to the last page.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

I finished it. It probably doesn't speak well of me. Mostly I just chuckled and thought, "haha, evolutionary psychology is real and this is about as credible as most porno plots".

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Sex & pain just don't mix for me, it is extremely off putting. In contrast, a genuine smile does wonders for me!

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You're better off.

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Seems to me what's going on with the young boy/older woman thing is far more reasonable. For good reasons we recognize the danger of older men taking advantage of and hurting young women. But, for very understandable reasons, men don't like the idea of being treated worse by the law because they are men so there is a demand to impose the same formal demands on women.

Rather than being a product of the most extreme left (who probably wouldn't mind if the law institutionalized an understanding of male sexuality as dangerous but not female sexuality) this feels like the result of a demand for fairness before the law that isn't particularly left wing and is pretty understandable. Ok, you want to say I'll go to prison if I sleep with a 15 year old then surely, at a minimum, you should be willing to impose that on women too.

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Think of it by analogy to laws about drugs. Truth is that a bit of coke at a hig society party isn't damaging to society to the same extent as when it's sold to an addict on the street. Sure, maybe it ruins a life but as long as they've got plenty of money and status they aren't likely to be robbing people to pay for their habit.

But, I think, our society would rightly reject a law which only criminalized coke for the poor or the unemployed. Even though the expected harm may be different, it's important for social cohesion and a feeling of fair play that the same laws apply in both cases.

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High-IQ people can often defray the negative effects better. Lots of Silicon Valley geeks do the polyamory thing, but I'm not looking forward to it hitting the lower classes.

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RemovedFeb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023
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Yeah, you're right. Marijuana would have been a better example. I do think rich and smart people have an easier time defraying the negative effects of vices.

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RemovedFeb 2, 2023·edited Feb 2, 2023
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I think that this is a useful framework for thinking about the issue. Even people who accept Richard's view of sex differences might feel uncomfortable having different penal codes for men and women.

Long prison terms for female teachers who slept with adolescent male students, when there's no indication of serious harm, do strike most people as draconian. There should be flexibility in sentencing.

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Men actually receive longer sentences than women for the same crimes--Elizabeth Holmes got a shorter sentence than her boyfriend, if you need a high-profile example.

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Yes, I was going to say this. All the most extreme and dubious claims you might hear about black criminals receiving tougher sentences than whites actually apply to men vs. women, and it's well-documented, something like men receiving 60-70% longer sentences for the same offense. So I don't think there's a great injustice here if you technically treat female-on-male predation the same as male-on-female, since once it goes before a judge it's going to get downgraded by 40% anyway.

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Richard was referring to a couple of anecdotal examples of female teachers sent for long stretches to the big house. You may be right that the typical example of this highly atypical class (women prosecuted for sex with underage boys) get shorter sentences than men for the same crime. But our system tends to over-sentence people in general, compared to other developed countries.

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Feb 2, 2023·edited Feb 2, 2023

To that end, I thought this piece was interesting. Thesis is that the US requires longer sentences than Europe to get the same result because the post-Warren-Court Bill of Rights makes convictions harder to achieve.

https://grahamfactor.substack.com/p/earl-warrens-greatest-mistake

I'm not a fan of reducing the US prison population across the board, at least with the system we have today. But rationally if you have a choice between keeping 6 violent criminals in prison for an extra year or putting Mary Kay Letourneau in prison for 6 years, it's hard to argue for the latter.

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Interesting but unconvincing because it focuses primarily on cases that go to trial which are such a tiny fraction of all cases in the US. Also there are issues with discovery that work against the accused. Not to mention the basic assumption that long prison terms provide substantial deterrence seems to not be very true (the people committing crime have very short term time horizons and 10 years might as well be 50 to them).

I do think he's absolutely correct about needing a change in how we handle police following procedure and professionalism. Basically, we need a largely statewide professional force of police which requires we pay them alot better and that professionalism is necessary for them to see police who flaunt the rules as deserving of prosecution.

Having said that, it's generally a good thing in the US that police see limited in their ability to prosecute/investigate crimes that don't have a victim who reports/shows up dead etc..,. All countries have different cultural ways of tolerating the things people want to say they disapprove of but are kinda tolerated (be it some kinds of prostitution or drugs at a nightclub). The us seems to need the excuse of privacy because we are much more into explicit rules and less unwritten social conventions.

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1. The entire calculus of plea deals is determined by the probabilities of what happens when you go to trial. If it is tougher to convict in a trial, then plea deals will be more lenient. Or the prosecutor won't even bother to prosecute a case. Graham also addressed plea deals in his response to one of the comments.

2. I generally agree with you on deterrence. I'd say Graham does as well, and in fact that's the whole point of the article, that deterrence is far more sensitive to probability of being punished than severity of punishment. Catching someone with 20% probability and sentencing him to 4 years is not NEARLY as effective as catching someone with 80% probability and sentencing him to 1 year.

To be honest, I'm inclined to think a large slice of the population of actual violent criminals is more or less undeterrable in the absence of a total police state. And then there is the sort of person who still commits serious crimes in prison, which is literally a police state. But there are always people on the margin who are more deterrable than others.

The point of the article is that because the US can't deter, it relies on incapacitation if it wants to actually reduce crime. I.e., crime being mostly a young man's game, taking convicts out of the civilian population until they're old enough that they're much less likely to commit as much (or at least as serious/violent of) crime.

In many cases, they're in and out of prison until they age out of serious crime, and this intermittent incapacitation still has a benefit on the crime rate (though obviously not as much as if they'd been continuously incapacitated). With shorter sentences, this intermittent incapacitation would be even less effective; the sort of man who spends 50% of his 20s and 30s in prison over 5+ stints might only spend 25%, thus being free 50% more of the time and presumably committing about 50% more crime (more than that if longer sentences actually have any deterrence effect at all).

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I see this kind of thing all the time on Reddit, where even people on the right have adopted a blank slate worldview in order to “own the libs”.

I believe ultimately conservatives want to live in a common sense world where men are hanged if they violently rape a woman, but that women need to meet society halfway by accepting that the world can be a dangerous place and that they need to drink less, dress more modestly, have less sex with strangers, maybe even have chaperones (remember chaperones?), and just generally be more careful about how they conduct themselves publicly.

But they absolutely refuse to take any responsibility for the bad things that happen to them. I’m a father of two daughters and they’d be in real trouble if I ever found out they passed out drunk on a street, because I know the world is full of bad men who can’t just be taught that “rape is wrong” or that “no means no”. A minority of men are hardwired to do these things; we are still apes after all.

I think what conservatives have seen over the last few years is men being shamed by leftists (and especially feminists) for acting in traditionally male ways. And because the right wanted to own the libs they started engaging in purity spiraling, taking glee in holding ostensibly progressive female teachers to the same standards as male teachers who do the equivalent with a girl.

That’s not a world I want to live in though. I don’t want to live in a world where a 30 year old man having sex with a 14 year old student is the same as a 30 year old woman having sex with a 14 year old boy. I’ve had sexual encounter with scores of women and enjoyed every single one of them. Regret? Shame? Not even once. My feeling is that quite a few of those women sometimes felt regret and shame though—because men and women are wired differently.

I don’t want to live in that fake blank slate world because it’s a world of lies and biological denial, and my fear is that conservatives have been boiled like frogs into accepting it.

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Yeah I’m still ashamed that I banged a whale as teenager. But the shame is mostly due to the fact that I wasn’t able to get with attractive girls then. It’s hardly trauma. Men and women are obviously different. Gender blank slatism is not only absurd and scientifically discredited; it’s harmful to society, and causes people to ruin their lives with stupid choices made on the basis of ignorance.

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You don't feel any regret or shame for causing those women to feel regret and shame?

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You seem to be assuming that there are two disjoint sets of women: a feminist minority with unusual preferences to whom current norms are tailored, and a majority that are sexual ‘traditionalists.’ In fact many ‘ordinary’ women who are attracted to strong dominant men etc. also want to reserve the right to deploy the feminist model (socially usually, though sometimes legally) against hated ex-boyfriends/husbands. And why not? If society will let you have your cake and eat it too you’ll probably take it. The costs of such norms are too abstract and the benefits too immediate for most to turn down. Hence I doubt that there’s a silent majority of women that want to reverse feminist norms or laws, even among the 50 Shades fans.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

Because sex can still bring some negative lifelong consequences (babies, STDs), I think it is fair game to prohibit sex between adult women and minor boys. The question is what the appropriate punishment should be. These women probably should lose their jobs as teachers. They should probably suffer some kind of legal penalty, although I don't think jail or prison is appropriate. I would be fine with a much smaller penalty than adult men would receive for statutory rape.

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Job loss and three years of probation sounds like a good calibration point to me.

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Overall, great essay.

I do have to challenge you on the absolutism of the young boy/older woman sex theory. In general, I agree, but don't you think there are exceptions where young boys are manipulated into sex by an older woman in positions of power? In those cases, should the women go to jail?

And when considering this, don’t think about a woman like the one you used as the example in your piece; nearly all boys would have sex with her. Think about it being Rosie O’Donnell.

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author

Rosie O’Donnell is very unattractive, but that doesn’t mean she victimizes teenage boys by having sex with them unless she puts a gun to their head.

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She doesn't NECESSARILY victimize them by having sex with them, but the odds of victimization certainly increase.

Think about it laid out on an x, y-axis where the x is the attractiveness of the female and the y is the likelihood of consent.

Do you believe that the slope of the line is zero, and consent for all young boys is always at 100%, regardless of the attractiveness of the woman?

If you think so, I firmly believe you're off the mark here and this where your absolutism becomes an issue and requires some level of assessment.

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> but the odds of victimization certainly increase.

How so? In your model, what harm does the boy hypothetically suffer?

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

I guess if the boy has really high aesthetic standards for his mate, then he'll be disgusted by sleeping with a fat, ugly woman, just like he would be mildly disgusted by having to see fat, ugly women on the street. This is a trivial problem, of course, not requiring the law to step in to solve the problem. Although fat camps might be a good idea, with experimental weight-losing drugs to create a more beautiful population. This is a funny hypothetical, ofc.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

That's a really funny hypothetical.

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Given she's gay, it's doubly unlikely.

Personally, I figure women have so many advantages these days, the boys aren't traumatized but the ladies might as well face some consequences for what they're doing.

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To further the point- if you agree that this is possible, now we’re in the very uncomfortable position of deciding, “is this chick ugly enough to consider the sex rape? Or hot enough to consider it consensual?”

I mean, I’m happy to sit on this board...my standards are likely low enough that few women will be behind bars for this crime, but still important to consider.

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Yeah a young boy doesn't have many standards. That's why I want to control what he is exposed to as long as I can.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

It looks like recent research supports your argument:

"In a third illustration, the kind of situation portrayed in the film classic Summer of ’42 was modelled: a 15-year-old boy in 1942 is strongly erotically attracted to an adult woman 5–9 years older, with whom he becomes friends, and is then initiatory in the sex that eventually ensues, which involves vaginal intercourse once in the absence of any coercion. The likelihood of subjectively reacting positively here would be 99%. If this scenario had been a 15-year-old girl with a young man instead, the likelihood would fall to 21%."

Source: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10508-021-02224-0

Of course, all of this should be common sense, but it's not.

Consider this case (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWPtAJS1kro): a 19-year-old woman, at a party, has sex with a 14-year-old boy who she thought was older. He initiated the sex. The boy's mother is pissed, and files against her. For this, she's placed on a life sex offender registry, at the highest level of offender, and it basically permanently ruins her life.

The age of consent was raised in the 20th century to reduce teenage pregnancy and to prevent older men from taking advantage of young girls . Women who get punished for sleeping with teenage boys are basically just collateral damage of laws that were instituted to protect girls.

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The actress in Summer of '42, Jennifer O'Neill, was one of the most gorgeous women I'd ever seen. Thanks for reminding me of her. That lucky bastard.

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It's nice to read something that I actually mostly agree with for once.

"Unfortunately, the opposition to blank slate ideology over the last half century has often come in the form of Christian conservatism, which defends traditional norms regarding sexual matters as a matter of religious dogma rather than pragmatic adaptations through which to navigate inherently difficult issues. Christian conservatives unfortunately can’t take a consistent stand against blank slatism because they are uncomfortable with evolutionary psychology and have often found gene-denial useful for their own purposes, like when arguing that homosexuality is a choice or has completely environmental causes."

Probably the most important passage in the article, to me. I am a Christian but I try to never, ever engage in "because God said so" as the reason for anything. First, because that paints God as a petty tyrant demanding compliance simply for its own sake. Second, if it's true that all the things God wants of you will generally lead to a more fulfilling life if you do them, that should be readily apparent in terms that any atheist could recognize. As such, you should be perfectly capable of explaining why all of these things such as marriage, family, personal responsibility, acknowledgment of moral standards, et cetera, are desirable without ever having to actually reference the Sky Daddy himself.

"Human relationships are complicated, which is why there seems to be a tendency to either revert to religious dogma or to try to reason about them in a way that ignores unpleasant truths and inherent contradictions in what men and women actually want."

And this passage captures the difficulty posed by the proposition of just expecting people not to be stupid. It seems like it shouldn't be that hard for people to just not be stupid. But we are. It seems to me that when it comes to anything even slightly political, people tend towards a single-factor analysis of the topic and then just run with whatever single factor they've identified straight off a cliff. You've correctly identified this as religious dogma in some cases, or in others, an absolute unshakeable adherence to absurd denials of human nature such as "blank slatism," which is of course simply religious dogma of a different sort.

I suppose it makes sense that we suck at thinking about political issues if we put things in terms of evolutionary behavior. I doubt that having the ability to reason through the nuances of public gender relations policy was of much value to our ancestors.

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Yes there are words that differentiate between attraction to prepubescent people and pubescent people and early adolescents (and being able to accurately identify, define, and use those words makes you sound kind of like a pedophile), but the fact that pedophilia doesn't technically apply to a relationship doesn't mean the relationship is desirable or unworthy of punishment.

A 14 year boy that has sex with an adult woman is usually going to be somewhat messed up by the situation. Not as badly as a 14 year old female will be on average, but it's still not a good thing and perfectly appropriate to criminalize, especially when you are talking about a person like a doctor or teacher that has some sort of position of trust and responsibility over the minor child.

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"A 14 year boy that has sex with an adult woman is usually going to be somewhat messed up by the situation."

I simply can't comprehend how any heterosexual man can think this, unless they send the woman to jail and he feels bad for his part in ruining her life over a victimless crime.

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I can't comprehend how any heterosexual man can think that Mary Kay Letourneau's student marrying her when she was 43 and he was 22 was not indicative of him being messed up. It's not like she was some stunner. It certainly appears that he wasn't able to handle the emotions associated with having sex and latched on to the first person that gave it too him, despite her being older and a convicted felon and all the complications that comes from that.

Men feeling less emotional attachment from sex does not mean no emotional attachment. I've seen plenty of guys that started off just f&*$ing a toxic promiscuous girl end up marrying them, despite acknowledging at the beginning of messing around with her that she was not suitable to date. 14 year olds are even less able to handle that.

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Jan 31, 2023·edited Jan 31, 2023

There are a couple of cases where an older woman had sex with a teenage boy, got pregnant and had the baby, and then sued the teenage boy for child support (often a state requirement before you can collect welfare benefits). That's bad, and there should be a tweak to the law to change that.

Other than that, I don't understand people claiming teenage boys are victimized by this.

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Right: teenage boys should not have to pay that price.

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I need to sincerely ask this question: was child support actually awarded in any of those cases? Because I doubt that intensely.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

Jesus fucking Christ. Obviously I don't agree with any of these cases. To me, it is screamingly obvious that in these situations support, if any is required, should be paid by the state. The state routinely asserts its rights in loco parentis when circumstances indicate.

That said, the majority of these cases involve boys 15-16 and girls/women 18-20, which I'd say is not an insane outcome. Still fairly reprehensible, but not insane.

What is insane is the SLO v. Nathaniel case, with a 15 year old boy and 34 year old woman. That's really boiling my blood right now.

I also note that, with one exception among the dozen or so cases I've now read, they're all from 2004 or earlier. Maybe we've moved in the right direction in this particular area.

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Treatment of men has gotten better, but it's still pretty abhorrent.

Most states give judges pretty wide latitude in child support and alimony cases, so you end up with abhorrent results going both ways, but in general, the law has been ridiculous for a long time and heavily slanted against the men. Probably worse than the treatment of victims of rape are the cuckolds that get stuck paying child support for kids that aren't theirs. Doing that to men should be treated as equivalent to rape, but no only do women pretty much suffer no consequences, courts routinely rule that the child is entitled to support and the rights or wishes of the cuckold literally don't come into play.

Just the fact that it is routine to take kids away from the father, even when not at fault for the divorce or initiating the divorce, is some abhorrently evil shit. Hopefully eventually it will be looked at like slavery and people will wonder how society tolerated it. The numbers of fathers that manage to stay connected to their kids with an every other weekend schedule is pretty small and to just give one party more or less the right to sever a parental relationship like that is something that shouldn't be allowed in civil society.

Just for an anecdote of how routinely batshit crazy men are treated, I had a coworker with a stay at home wife who cheated on him and decided to leave him and the judge took the approach that she was entitled to the lifestyle she was accustomed to and just ignored the reality that when a one income household is living paycheck to paycheck, it's not feasible for either of them to maintain the same lifestyle after separating into two different households. So he was basically impoverished by the judge. 20% of his income went to child support and then he was stuck paying the house note and her car note and giving her an allowance. The only reason he didn't end up on the streets is that his parents rented him an apartment and also helped him cover the cost of selling his car (which was slightly upside down) and helped get him into a beater. And on top of that he lost custody of his kids even though he was the nurturing one in the relationship and she mainly cared about maximizing her payments. Only silver lining is that she was lazy and wanted him to take the kids as much as possible without her being at risk of losing child support payments. And what's noteworthy about that anecdote isn't how badly he was treated, it's that it's not noteworthy at all for that reason. That's reasonably common. It's amazing more family court judges don't get assassinated considering how callous many of them are.

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You are totally right.

I'm a heterosexual male who did nothing much sexually until 18.

Over two decades on I would still be pretty messed if I'd been coerced into sex at 14 with an adult male, mainly because I'm not and was never gay.

If I'd been coerced into sex at 14 with an adult female I'd laugh about it today and tell the guys about it over a beer who would probably find the whole thing funny too.

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This seems bordering on comical, there are billions of boys with all kinds of psychological makeups, motivations and vulnerabilities. Didn't you notice that? There is a norm of expectation that all men are the same in certain ways, but it is based more on what society wants of boys as they grow up than actual lived experience. Even if we say for the sake of argument that every teen boy would enjoy sex with any female teacher (an insane idea!) don't you think they might afterwards be confused and the nature of their education and relationship with adults changed for the worse?

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A lot of things can happen, but you need to prove it in a court of law if you want to prosecute someone for a crime. Our imaginations are a lot stronger than reality and can come up with some horrific scenarios that have never occurred or are too rare for any person to care about because of our inherent biases.

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But then it's a matter for research and an extremely complicated one, not something that can be resolved by an armchair hunch that no boys are harmed.

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Ofc. However, of all the cases I've seen in the news, which are themselves a tiny proportion of all cases of ephebophilic relationships, all of them have been completely consensual with no suggestion of any harm. Richard is using normal language, instead of being statistically anal (i.e., Not All, On Average, Overlapping normal distributions, etc.). I am sure he would agree that an actual supernova-like event of a woman physically overpowering a man/boy to rape him or using a gun to rape a boy should be considered a serious crime, irrespective of the age of the victim, and that it's especially bad when an immature adolescent is the victim. But that's not the issue. since then there would be nothing to talk about since these situations don't occur, or there would be news stories like that shown all over the planet. They are too rare to talk about and we deal with them well. We should use common sense. Every man I've known knows that it wouldn't be rape if they had sex with an older woman, and that they shouldn't be severely punished for it, albeit maybe there should be social ostracization; a natural "weird, uncomfortable, creepy" response to abnormal relationships/behavior.

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Why don't we just take a look at what actually happens (and what 13-year-old boys seduced by teachers say about it on average) instead of theorizing about it.

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Do you know of a study in which young boys are randomized to have sex with their teachers? I know there’s a lot of garbage “science” in this area.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023

Rind et al. controversy might be of interest, especially the authors various responses to criticism and also the nature of the criticism, Richard Green's article on pedophilia is also interesting especially given the role he played with respects to declassifying homosexuality from the DSM, you might as well read the hebephilia controversy involving Blanchard and Cantor whilst your at it.

I should say I was very interested in this topic many years ago, and so have basically read everything on the matter, and my conclusion is that basically all the data on the matter is garbage, some with obvious problems others with more subtle problems. Even simple stuff such as estimates for the prevalence of various chronophilias seem obviously terrible. I think Michael Seto has some pretty good intuitions and Germany seems to have a surprising amount of good data, there was also a some interesting data sets involving priests but beyond that meh.

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It has happened enough that there is a population one can canvass without recreating it in the lab... but whether there are any rigorous studies, I don't know. I read some journalistic takes that were probably biased, and I have vague memories of something more quantitative, but maybe I imagined that.

I do know that not everyone is pleased about the long-term impact.

You could probably raise enough money to study this under a pseudonym promising to debunk yourself...

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There has been some research on long-term outcomes for adolescent boys in relationships with men, most of it purporting to find that they don't regret it or seem scarred by it, regardless of whether they end up straight or gay. The studies may be low-quality and tendentious. Not surprisingly, they are so controversial and their authors so reviled that it scares other researchers away. It would be really good to know more empirically about this, for both males and females.

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deletedFeb 1, 2023·edited Feb 1, 2023
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Do you think there's potential for some damage if the older woman takes things from R-rated to xxx-rated or some weird cosplay. Not trying to be pedantic but I have to imagine the type of woman who would engage in sexual activities with a 14 year old boy has some unorthodox proclivities. Otherwise, thank you for your service.

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Admittedly anecdotal, but I’ll throw in this story as a data point.

I’m 26, but two years ago an acquaintance from high school posted a long form video on Instagram describing how in high school he was a freshmen (around 14) and went to a party and a girl who was a senior seduced him. This being his first sexual experience, he quickly became addicted to sex and the power/social capital that came with it. He said he felt taken advantage of.

Personally, I definitely agree that 1) the modern left is weird/scared about traditional “muscular men/feminine women”, but to go so far as to say that 2) 14 year olds should sleep with older women is a stretch. To steelman this piece, I think I’ve got two questions/concerns:

1) Christian’s/traditionalists will point to the deeply emotional/spiritual nature of sex. Boil it down to biology, and there’s still a lot happening. I’d love a follow up piece to explore the neurochemistry of the brain during sex. Are Christian’s fretting over nothing? Or are there real biological realities at play that society should think about? And back to the heart of the matter: are men’s brains wired differently any hormones/chemicals that make them less predisposed to emotional hang ups associated with women during sex?

2) What age is the new age of consent? If an 8-year old can experience an erection, is it fair game? This is an earnest understanding of how Richard sees sex. I doubt he would subscribe to this worldview. But I would love to know...Is it just puberty?

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Your acquaintance sounds like the inventor of the humblebrag. I can't have too much sympathy for him. Poor me, I had too much sex, got too much power, and enjoyed too much status.

Otherwise, apply your sanity and common sense to any given situation. It should lead you to the right answer. This desire for bright-line rules in human relationships is very understandable, and it's always a good idea to follow the bright line rules that exist in the law (statutory rape, etc.), but you're never going to find a rule that works in every situation. Embrace the case-by-case basis.

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I can’t blame you for thinking that, because he may be. Or he’s a sociopath/psychopath (we were never close, so who knows?) I do remember thinking to not put this on social media because he was a weepy mess. Like ugly crying tears. But I digress.

I find your argument about following the law interesting because....we agree? As the law stands, women who sleep with 14 year-olds go to jail. Because that’s the law. And I think it reflects a larger healthy cultural understanding that this behavior is taboo and should be punished. My confusion is why Richard wants to encourage this behavior.

I also want to know the “case” you’d defend where you think a 14 year old could be having sex with a teacher is good.

Sorry for the long post, I think I lost the plot some with your comment.

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It is a very new cultural understanding or taboo. Richard isn't saying it should be encouraged. He's saying the teacher shouldn't go to jail or be executed or castrated as a pedophile for her actions. An understanding of human nature revolts against such retardation, especially in my case as a man who has been a 14 yo boy who has fantasized about having sex with many different women. Any sane person undersntands that there most likely won't be any harm in this scenario. The case should be judged on a case-by-case basis if one party contacts the law feeling that a crime has taken place. It is the job of the police, judges, jury, etc. to determine whether a crime has taken place and what the punishment should be. I think in Estonia, where I am from, the level of retardation hasn't risen to the point where a group of judges would sentence a female teacher to jail for hacing sex with a 14 yo boy. Tbf, I haven't checked and most cases never reach the law in the first place since everybody involved understands that no crime has taken place. I know a few cases analogous to that myself when I was in school both in Estonia and Finland, not involving teachers, but 18-20 yo men in relationships with sexually precocious, mature, and gorgeous 14-16 yo girls.

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RemovedJan 31, 2023·edited Jan 31, 2023
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Out of curiosity, are you a man or a woman? I can see how women can think this, but if you’re a woman let me assure you we’re very very different in this area of life.

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This sounds like a humble brag. So much sex you don't need any more! Most men are thirsty, that's fine, if it keeps you. moving.

As for ugly bosses, yes I oppose all civil rights laws, so that should be allowed.

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i think this (like most things) mostly comes down to the particular person and the particular situation, but that being said, i had some bizarre sexual encounters when i was young and when i do think of them i mostly wince, but it's nowhere near needing to discuss it w a therapist or a cop, or changing the channel if a movie has a similar scene.

it may have been somewhat disturbing, but i still got to roll around w a naked woman for awhile, which is always exciting.

(but i may be the old guy in this club, i grew up in the 80s, we led wilder lives back then)

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You can't just stop there while I am erect. We need details.

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For the vast majority of teenage boys, having sex with an older female would be a pleasant experience that they would look back fondly on.

I'm pretty sure all of the female teachers who had sex with teenage boys were fired as soon as the news came out, so that's not really the issue. The question is whether they are "pedophiles" who should be criminally prosecuted.

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Yeah... if one of the under-40 teachers at my high school took my virginity I would be eternal grateful. It would seem intriguing.

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I think I am with Richard here ... When I was 14 I find it impossible to imagine sex with my French teacher would've damaged me in any way. And still I find it hard to imagine how damaging it can be to have sex you're not really into. Unless there is physical violence, or threat thereof, you can always walk away. True, there might be a cost due to retaliation but life is made of trade offs.

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Jan 31, 2023·edited Jan 31, 2023

J....85 Having been in this situation as a 14 yr old boy I can tell you with 100% certainty that you don't have a clue what your talking about

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You have a data point of one. Congratulations.

I happen to have grown up around other males (like 50?% of the people I have known have been male) and I have seen boys get messed up by sex. Not saying sex and the consequences are the same for boys as they are for girls, clearly they're not. But in general, males are impacted by hormones also and it's generally going to be undesirable for 14 year old boys, even if eager participants, to have sex with adults.

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I'll take my on the field perspective over your guessing what's going on in other people's head from the side lines any day of the week .

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That's wrong, 14 year olds are old enough to get married to adults and consummate the marriage as well. Especially when it's a younger girl, older guy type of scenario.

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We all know the boy who at 15 fell in love with his married teacher - then practically double his age (29). You do not? They married when he got 30 (and she divorced). President Macron.

Macron has described it as "a love often clandestine, often hidden, misunderstood by many before imposing itself". The silliest thing is to believe people turn magically mature at 18 or 21. My first very serious relationship - yep, with an older women, she was 31 - started when I was 25. And jeez, was it toxic at times. So what? As if love worked always as in the Cosby family (sic). Now I am 50+, my wife again 31. ;) Life is good.

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It's not about magically maturing at a certain point. Lines have to be drawn, and that's a reasonable enough place to draw it, even if our line drawing is pretty illogical. It's not reasonable to try to protect 25 year olds from themselves and older potentially abusive predators. We can at least try to protect 14 and 15 year olds.

Also, I don't know the 15 year old boy that eventually married his teacher when he was 30 and she was 45. I know a couple of guys with significantly older spouses and it's about what you'd expect. Nice enough guys but weren't exactly going to be killing it on the dating circuit. Perfectly fine to make that decision at 25 or 30 or 35. Not at 15.

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The boy is Emmanuel Macron, president of France. - If I - a boy -had been sexually active at 15 with a 16 or 20 or 25 or 30 year-old female; I do not see how that would have harmed me more than not having sex. (Girls are different, I guess. Though it seems, many girls in GDR "lost" their virginity at around 14 - and felt fine about it.) Anyways, not going to make a case for peds. I just agree with Hanania here.

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I agree that "Fifty Shades of Grey" more accurately represents the kind of romantic/sexual relationship the average woman wants than the ideal relationship portrayed in the Ezra Klein article. But I think you're committing the naturalistic fallacy. Just because something is "natural" doesn't mean it's good. We don't have to be blank-slatists to acknowledge that some of the behaviour that comes "naturally" to humans is morally wrong. In fact, evolutionary psychology sort of presupposes that. Evolution doesn't care about what's right or wrong: it optimised our bodies (including our brains) for behaviours most likely to ensure self-preservation and reproduction, regardless of whether those behaviours are morally good.

For example, for most of human history it was common for 12-year-old girls to get married off to much older men. The strongest predictive factor in the likelihood of a female human to be a victim of sexual assault by a man is her age: it peaks very shortly after the average age of menarche and falls off dramatically past the age of 30 (https://web.archive.org/web/20181226044312/https://quillette.com/2016/01/02/to-rape-is-to-want-sex-not-power/). This is an evolutionarily sound strategy: if you're male and you want to pass on your genes to the next generation, your best bet is to have sex with the most fertile females available to you.

But the fact that this strategy is "evolutionarily sound" doesn't mean that it's not evil. If your 12-year-old daughter was raped by a man much older than her, I very much doubt that you'd shrug and say "well, that's human nature, objecting to it would be like legislating against the tide". I doubt that your opinion would change if your 12-year-old daughter had suffered no physical harm during the incident, if she insisted that she loved her rapist, if her rapist insisted that he loved your daughter and was committed to caring and providing for her for the rest of his life. I think you'd be furious that someone had violated your daughter, and the fact that his sexual desires are "natural" would have zero bearing on that fact.

I am no more likely to be persuaded that raping children is okay because it's "natural" than a vegetarian is to be persuaded that eating meat is okay because it's "natural". The fact that something comes naturally to humans is completely orthogonal to whether it's morally right.

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It never ceases to amaze me how impossible it is for people in my age group (25, yes it is bad) to understand that Mr. Death and Mr. Rape are more likely to visit people who do not take reasonable precautions with regards to their own safety.

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In Hungray, the age of consent is 14. It was when I was growing up and it still is.

It seems to conform to biologial-social reality much better than 18, as we lack the tension in our public discourse that seems to propel such hysteria over sex.

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A sane place, for some reason some "child-rights" activists got it raised to from 14 to 16 here in Canada. Could be worse though, looking at all the American states where it's 18.

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"When instincts are this deeply embedded in human nature, it requires totalitarian methods to stamp them out, which is probably why there is such a strong connection between belief in blank slate ideology and support for speech controls."

Very well put for a Westerner, who never had Socialism force progress on their society.

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It's a shame that civil rights legislation (our "shadow constitution") explicitly prevents lawmaking from acknowledging obvious biological differences between men and women.

Do you think that the path forward is to normalize discourse about overturning certain Supreme Court rulings and repealing CR laws? I feel like those two actions are the most productive policy outcome we could get from the conversation Richard is trying to have on here.

Oh – and carving out an enlightened space apart from our silly culture – that too.

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