Vice Corroborates My Tattooing/Cutting/Narcissism Theory

http://www.vice.com/read/summer-is-the-hardest-time-to-hide-self-harm-scars-511

There it is. More evidence.


Socialization Assumptions And The Blank Slate Fallacy

I was reading an article about how butthurt Millennials turned social justice into institutionalized intersectional warfare – a corollary, my five regular readers will note, to this post on cat’s paw intersectionalism I wrote last year – when I happened upon this comment.

The comment raises a standard feminist/SJW refrain: that the reason for [life metric where men are perceived to do better than women] is because society is set up for men to succeed, and even where men directly manifest the observed results, it is because they are “socialized” to do so.

Or, as an example, the wage gap:

P: Men make $1.00 for every $0.77 women make.
P: This is because men choose higher-paying professions and aggressively negotiate raises or higher salaries.
C: Men do this because they are socialized to be more driven and aggressive.

Okay, let’s accept that arguendo. What happens?

The argument rests on a fundamental assumption: that socialization is the predominant factor behind sex-based behavioral differences. Put another way, the argument needs humans to be a blank slate: socialization will ultimately decide metabehavior.

The issue with this theory is that it fails to identify an origin for the socialization pattern. A simple question betrays the flaw: why would humans deliberately choose to socialize men to be more aggressive or ambitious than women? It’s one thing to claim that socialization patterns repeat themselves: men socialized to be more ambitious or aggressive and women socialized to be demure will raise future generations in their images. That makes enough sense. But that pattern cannot exist sua sponte; even an iterated system needs an origin condition.

We’re left with two possibilities: the “Adam and Eve” theory, in which Adam and Eve decide to socialize their boys as more ambitious and their girls as more demure for no discernable reason, or the “evolution” theory, in which males evolved to be more ambitious and aggressive through some natural condition.

Perhaps it has to do with vastly increased testosterone levels, physical size and strength advantages, and sperm competition? Or does a virgin birth “institutional oppression” theory make more sense?

Your call.


A Working Taxonomy of False Rape Claims

The horrendous recent track record of public rape accusations has laid waste to the canard that accusers are entitled to unyielding belief.[1]  Nevertheless, false rape claims are notoriously difficult to parse or quantify.  A portion of that difficulty may be due to the varying motivation of the accuser herself.[2]

In response, this post attempts to form a working classification of false rape claims, broken down by the internal logical process of the accuser.  The classification contains three subtypes: malicious, opportunistic, and [cognitive-]dissonant.

Malicious:

Malicious claims are intentionally false claims designed to injure the accused.

P. I want to harm him.

[A] Being accused of rape will damage his reputation and cause him to suffer.

C. I will claim he raped me.

Opportunistic:

Opportunistic claims are intentionally false claims tendered to craft an image of the accuser in others.

Underlying premise:

P.  I want other people to view me as [X].

Examples:
I don’t want other people thinking I’m the kind of dirty whore who sucks off half the pledge class.
I want certain people to give me sexual attention in a manner I can control.
[3]
I don’t want my boyfriend/husband/significant other to conclude that I cheated on him.

Underlying assumption:

[A].  Being seen as a rape victim will make other people view me as [X].

Examples:
Nonconsensual sexual acts make the recipient a victim.
Nonconsensual sex acts make the recipient the center of attention.
Nonconsensual sex acts aren’t the victim’s fault.  [Or, stated as a conditional, /consensual –> /fault.]

C. I better claim I was raped.

Dissonant:

Dissonant claims are false claims intended to reconcile the triggering act with the accuser’s self-image.  Dissonant claims go through two internal logical processes: first, a shaming mechanism that makes up the accuser’s core belief that people with the desired traits don’t consensually participate in certain sex acts; second, an absolving mechanism that removes agency or fault from the accuser to resolve the fact that she consensually participated in that sex act with the core belief.

Process 1:

Underlying premise:

P.  I want to view myself as [X].

Underlying assumption:

[A1].  People who are [X] don’t voluntarily engage in sex act [Y].  This is the “shaming” assumption.

Subsidiary conclusion:

SC.  If I am [X], I did not voluntarily engage in sex act [Y].

Process 2:

P2.  I engaged in sex act [Y].

[A2].  /consensual –> /fault.  This is the “absolving” assumption.

Main conclusion:

C.  I must have been raped.

There are two reasons for the dual internal process in the dissonant claim, compared to the single process in the intentional claims. First, intentional claims feature no resolution or internal belief on the part of the accuser; they simply play off the perceived beliefs of others.  Second, the triggering act need not actually occur in the intentional claims.  That is, the dissonant claim is the only one of the three that requires a sex act between the accuser and accused.[4]

In this classification, most fantasist false rape – where the accuser makes up a claim with little or no plausible basis – will be overwhelmingly opportunistic.  By plausible basis, I mean some actual underlying encounter, whether or not it turns sexual: a date rape claim where the accuser and accused spend the evening together has a plausible basis, while a date rape claim where the accuser and accused had no contact at the alleged time, or the accused does not exist, has none.  These can be accurately described as fantasist-narrative, where the accuser knows she’s telling a story.

Some fantasist false rape, where the accuser actually believes a sex act occurred despite no plausible basis, is dissonant under the model.  This is accurately described as fantasist-delusional, and is most likely associated with mental illness in the accuser.

In the next post, we’ll talk about likely accusers in each classification, as well as the consequences on investigation of each type.

[1] Again.

[2] Yes, I am aware that men also levy false rape accusations.  Let’s go out on a limb here and assume the vast majority of false accusers are female.

[3] See, e.g., Jackie Coakley/UVA.

[4] The accuser’s belief that a sex act occurred is sufficient – see the discussion of fantasist-delusional claims.


Why Calling Yourself a PoC is Opportunistic Cat’s Paw Intersectionalism

A couple decades ago, the Sycuan Band of Kumeyaay Indians hit upon a modern day gold mine: their lobbying efforts to remedy the systemic disenfranchisement of, as they put it, a “large tribal population of Native Americans,” resulted in sweetheart deals with the State of California to allow the Sycuan to build and operate a massive casino in the Dehesa Valley east of San Diego.  The Sycuan band cited the sheer numbers of Kumeyaay people that would be helped by the revenues from gambling.

Once the ink was dry, The Sycuan decided not to share their lucre with other bands of Kumeyaay, or even with their own blood relatives: tribal elders promptly kicked half the active membership out once the money had to be shared.      

Intersectionalism is essentially the art of finding the most picayune combination of traits (“well, from the indigenous bisexual Guatemalan immigrant feminist perspective, this is problematic[1]…”) that seeks to glorify and “legitimize” the individual experience of the most particularized group possible.

Yet intersectionalists will still refer to themselves as people of color (PoC).  That’s an overbroad term which defines them as a single and monolithic social group[2], which is more or less the antithesis of intersectionality.  Of course, when YOU deny my unique snowflakiness, you’re a bigot.  When I do it, I’m empowered.
 
The reason for the equivocation in identity is borrowed directly from the power structures intersectionalists tend to decry: amass a base as large as possible for the fight for resources, then attempt to artificially limit any resources gained to a group as small as possible.  We are brothers[3], you and I, when I need an army; when the spoils are divvied up, I don’t believe I know you.
 
Expect the following.  When it’s time to fight against the “hegemonic white cishet male power structure” or whatever, intersectionalists magically turn into “PoC,” keeping the struggle for the common good.  When they gain any currency – including scholarships, grant money, government programs, or merely attention – they suddenly turn back into “Black genderqueer fat activists.”
  
Is another unrelated group attempting to recruit you – or even just to arouse your emotional state – by asserting a shared victimology on the grounds that you’re both not white, straight males?  You might be a cat’s paw.  Tread carefully and keep your eyes open.
 
 
 
[1] “Problematic” translation: “I am butthurt.”[*]
[2] and one that deliberately excludes and others only white people, regardless of the power structure faced by the particular intersectional group.
[3] “Sisters” would probably be more accurate.
 
[*] real translation: “I had a negative emotional reaction to the content of your speech.”

Soraya Chemaly Made Rape a Joke

You, Soraya Chemaly, are the reason high school and college males consider rape a joke. Every time you cite an unfounded and inflated statistic like “one in four,” every time you call a college campus a “rape capital,” every time you explain away your utter lack of real evidence with the logically bereft meme that all the unseen rapes must just be unreported, every time you conflate a couple getting drunk and having a one-night stand that the girl later regrets with forcible assault, or decry a puerile email as an integral part of an ominous yet intangible “rape culture,” you trivialize sexual assault and you trivialize its victims.

You made rape a joke. You continue to make rape a joke by constantly attempting to expand the definition of rape beyond its logical and observed boundaries, by denouncing male behavior as “toxic” and “shameful” when it crosses your preconceived notions of acceptability, by celebrating the utter trashing of due process in modern Title IX campus assault investigations.

“Boys” aren’t as stupid as you seem to think, Soraya. They know the difference, even at 17, between “the 80% of reported rapes” that “involve alcohol” and often feature two drunk parties manifesting consent, and a girl being forcibly raped and murdered in a dorm, even if you manipulatively link them in an article. When you continually tell people that the sky is falling – that a massive problem exists all around them that belies their own direct observational experience – you devalue not only your own message, but the real and horrific instances of rape that you lump in with far more harmless actions.

You made rape a joke. That you’re making a career off that joke by railing against what you wrought is the height of disingenuity. Enjoy your work.


Fixing Jenny Block’s Math

Jenny Block’s sense of aggrandized entitlement over public space even skews her math.

Let’s revisit her manifesto paragraph:

The thing is, that leaves women clawing for scraps, when 50% of the goods, including space, is rightfully ours. I may only be 5’ tall and 100 pounds soaking wet. But that doesn’t make me entitled to any less space in the public sphere.

Yes. It does. You’re 5 feet tall and 100 pounds? I’m going to assume that corresponds to body measurements of about a 32 inch chest, 24 inch waist, and short arms and legs. I’m 6’4″, 200 pounds, with a 42 inch chest, 32 inch waist, and long arms and legs.

You’re half my mass, 5/6 of my height, and 2/3 to 3/4 of my width depending on our measuring point. Why should you be entitled to a full 50% of the available public space? In an equitable distribution, you would get somewhere between 1/3 of the space (based on our relative mass) to 40-45.4% of the space (based on relative measurements, with a truly fair compromise probably reached by a calculation of relative total bodily volume. I’d estimate your entitlement of public space between the two of us at 37.5 to 40%.

The other 60-62.5% is mine. And if I want to air out my balls, I will.


“Men Taking Up Too Much Space On Public Transit?” You’re Claiming Privilege For The Wrong Gender

So the latest 100% Serious Example Of How Something Innocuous Is Really RapeTM is sitting on the bus. No, really.

It turns out that men tend to sit comfortably with their legs spread in public spaces, while women shrink and cower into the corner in an odd nesting procedure. Take this article, which comes handy with an infographic detailing the ways in which men and women differ in their public transit seating desires.

Feminist groups [1] have recently been demanding that men stop this and sit with their legs closed, as to splay all willy-nilly is sheer “entitlement.” As self-important and fiercely-browed polyscribe Jenny Block argues, spreading your legs on public transit is not a personal act, but is political:

This is about men and privilege and how they generally act as if the world is theirs to use and take up as they see fit.

She then follows her claimed distaste for such “entitlement” with her own grubstake:

The thing is, that leaves women clawing for scraps, when 50% of the goods, including space, is rightfully ours. I may only be 5’ tall and 100 pounds soaking wet. But that doesn’t make me entitled to any less space in the public sphere.

I like her piece, because it cuts right to the heart of her hypocrisy instead of burying it in a fusillade of snark like most Internet feminist bullshit.[2]

This is not an example of male privilege. It’s an example of female privilege. The entire issue with taking up public space is women demanding complete immunity from having any bodily contact with strangers, a “right” of corporal autonomy men don’t feel entitled to assert.[3] Don’t believe me? Look at the picture again. She’s using the window seat as a barrier to contact – armrest on one side, no possibility of interaction on the other – and hiding in the far corner as if protected by a moat. Or read Ms. Block’s self-described “solution” to the dastardly mancroachment:

So, I board the plane as early as I can. I plant my feet wide. I park my elbows firmly on the armrests. Sometimes I even stand my computer up on its end so that if any body part attempts to infringe, said body part will be smashed against my MacBook instead of against me.

“Instead of against me.” Block is explicitly trying to take possession of the public space she feels entitled to, instead of merely occupying and interacting with that space. Men spreading their legs accept the possibility of physical interaction with others who may temporarily contact them through simultaneous occupation of the shared space. That’s not an act of entitlement, it’s an act of acknowledgment. The women attempting to shame this behavior, on the other hand, seek to minimize the possibility of shared contact completely. They demand to own the common space.

Where outright ownership is not possible, Block puts up defenses: where she might be touched, she tries to make it physically uncomfortable for the other person. “I park my elbows firmly on the armrests.” For all their glorious Tumblr’d captures of men taking up space, the Legs Closed Brigade has shown no evidence of men refusing to cede the public space to another, nor any of men actively discouraging body contact – two themes of aggression that thoroughly permeate Block’s intentions.

There’s only one example of entitlement on display here, and the women screaming it would see it more clearly with a mirror than a shaky cell phone camera and a Tumblr feed.

[1] As if I even need to mention the source; seriously, who else would take up a cause so utterly retarded?

[2] Hi Jezebel!

[3] Which, of course, must also be the fault of the patriarchy.


Why Homosexuality Is Both Normal and Not Normal: Two Equivocations

The latest bit of cultural Hooah! to pop up in my mixed upper class shitlib/batshit recluse libertarian Facebook news feed today was an interaction between Australian Tall Poppy Kevin Rudd and a pastor seemly hellbent on assassinating him with sheer staring power. Mr Rudd discussed his beliefs that people were born gay, at that the idea that being gay is “somehow an abnormal condition is just wrong.”

Except that being gay is by definition an abnormal condition. Normal refers to the predominant prevalence of a particular condition within a defined sample group, or, to put it into more casual terms, “usual, typical, or expected.” [Dictionary definition, provided by Google.] Within the human population, homosexuality is decidedly not “usual, typical, or expected;” most studies of sexual demographics peg the rate of homosexuality in the single digits, with even notorious latter-day Sodoms like Man Francisco only coming in at 15% gay. Even on the extreme high end, Dr. Alfred Kinsey found that 37% of males had “achieved orgasm” with another male, with 13% of females getting theirs from their sisters – still each decided minorities. So homosexuality is not normal, as it refers to individual homosexuals.

Enter equivocation number one. Homosexuality is perfectly normal, as it relates to groups. Every culture on Earth has homosexuality. Most, if not all, sexually reproducing animal species engage in homosexuality. Hell, there are probably even gay plants and a couple rocks and minerals and shit on the down low. The concept of homosexuality in the human population – in other words, that gays will exist – is completely usual, typical, and expected.

Equivocation number two. None of what I just wrote matters for the purposes of the arguments they always appear in. Whether homosexuality is normal or abnormal, or whether being homosexual is normal or abnormal, is never the actual point: the underlying argument is always whether being homosexual is positive or negative.

Normality has nothing to do with the value of the particular condition. Stating that being gay isn’t normal doesn’t cast any aspersions on it: those on both sides of the agenda who claim otherwise, whether gay rights advocates (“He said we were abnormal! Hate speech!!” Well, you are…) or religious conservatives (“Those gays aren’t normal!” So?) are equivocating: they use normal to mean good.

It doesn’t. Normal means typical. Being gay isn’t normal. Homosexuality in the broader sense is. Neither stops gays from being good or bad people, or means homosexuality in itself is a negative or positive trait. It’s not hate speech, and it’s not an accolade. It’s just a comment about prevalence.

You can be abnormal and still be OK.


Covering The Shame: Tattoos Are Narcissism, But Not Only For The Reason You Think

Proclaiming tattoos to be inherently narcissistic is hardly insightful; after all, tattoos are visually disruptive, and, like most things that are visually disruptive, catch the eye and attract attention to themselves. By undergoing the inking, the tattooed gains attention, positive currency in the human system of self-worth, for an external modification that makes her stand out from the rest of the pack.

That attention, however, is only half the puzzle. As any great artist will tell you, the negative space in a piece is as important as the feature. To belabor the metaphor, what the eye is asked to miss is just as crucial as what the eye is asked to see.

Consider what tattoos are in message form – and remember, if you can see them, they are for you. A tattoo is the literal act of covering the wearer with an image she prefers to her own natural state – in essence, hiding true aspects of herself underneath a chosen, solely external design.

The emotional logic follows this path:

P: I am not beautiful enough or worthwhile as I am; if people, including myself, get a glimpse of me laid bare, they’ll abandon me.
SC: I need to hide myself.
SC: I need to portray something beautiful to attract attention.1
MC: A tattoo solves both problems.

Lena Dunham tats

There’s a brutally honest, and I assume autobiographical, scene in the first season of Girls that demonstrates this dyadic process perfectly: Lena Dunham is explaining to that weird dude willing to plow her how she got tattooed specifically because she gained a lot of weight very fast, and felt like it was the only way to “regain control” over her body. The shame Lena felt at her sudden weight gain led her to distract attention from it by simultaneously hiding portions of her body beneath ink and providing a visual catch away from her belly fat.

Both the hiding and distracting mechanisms suggest narcissistic personality traits, not just the latter. The narcissist’s greatest fear is being exposed as a fraud and abandoned. In order to avoid this untenable outcome, narcissists hide themselves, especially aspects they consider negative, out of a deep-seated sense of internalized shame. Narcissists do not fundamentally accept that people will forgive them their flaws without withdrawing love, and often cannot forgive their own perceived flaws.

Hiding and painting over the flaws is easier than fixing the underlying sense of self-worth, but it’s a short-term strategy; just as tattoos look like shit on aging skin, the narcissist’s compensation strategies fade and wither in the face of deeper issues.

Update: Here’s a first-hand account of a fat feminist discussing how she deliberately hid a part of her body she felt ashamed of with a tattoo in order to cultivate a specific “acceptable” image. It doesn’t get much clearer than this.

[1] Here, we finally see one advantage of tattooing over cutting. Cutting scars hide the unmodified self, but typically receive only negative attention.


Black Ink, Red Flag: Tattoos Are A Sign Of Trouble

There’s a girl in my gym absolutely covered in tats.  Well, more accurately, there are at least 15 girls in my gym absolutely covered in tats.  This one just happens to have the most spectacular ass of the bunch, in no small part due to the fact that ass exercises make up the near-entirety of her routine.  I believe I saw her doing light skullcrushers once, but it was in between supersets of glute bridges and mule kicks.

She’s crazy.

Many heavily tattooed girls are.

To get tattooed – heavily, more ink than skin, covered in tattoos – you have to go through a significant amount of pain.  I’ve often been told by inkwomen the world over that the pain becomes a fast addiction – that once they got their first taste of the needle, they couldn’t wait to repeat the process.  That the pain makes them feel alive.

What’s wrong with that?

What’s wrong with that is not the oft-cited rationalization shared by cutters of “I feel numb normally, so the pain just lets me feel something.”  Asking a cutter/human canvas why they feel numb is a red herring, because if they were simply searching for a hypercharged exit from their adolescent ennui via physical sensation they’d masturbate more.  Or take up jogging.

The pain itself is the message, not the escape the pain brings.  The pain itself tells the observer and reminds the canvas that she hates herself enough to deserve the pain, which is why it brings her temporary mental relief: the overwhelming sensation of acute pain brought on by the needle or the cutting implement aligns her physical state with her own self-image, thus perversely lifting her emotional state by eliminating any uncomfortable discordant thought.  There are, after all, two ways to match her self-esteem to her general frame: she can raise the former, which is difficult, or she can trash the latter.

What if tattoos didn’t hurt?  Would they still be a signal of low self-image?1 Stay tuned.

1. Hint: yes.