The Crowhill Report - Content

crow
Views and opinions on the news, culture, politics, beer, art, science, education, religion and ethics

Sites endorsed by Crowhill:
Crowhill Publishing Homebrewbeer.biz
The Krehbiel Report on Publishing@gregkrehbiel


The unexamined deceit of the female libido

by Greg Krehbiel on 28 November 2017

If you can stomach it, give this a quick skim. The Unexamined Brutality of the Male Libido

It’s perfectly alright for the “paper of record” to print a disgusting hit job on half the population. Provided it’s the male half.

When I was doing research for my book on thoughts for men — Eggs are Expensive, Sperm is Cheap (which happens to be free today on Kindle) — I read a lot of ugly stuff from the “men’s movement.” Some of it is truly nasty. But I’m not sure it’s any worse than this garbage from the NY Times.

They should be ashamed of themselves.

(P.S. — the headline of this post is, of course, a parody of the title of the article linked above. I don’t think the female libido is deceitful — whatever that would mean.)

2017-11-28  »  Greg Krehbiel

Talkback x 16

  1. Ken Crawford
    28 November 2017 @ 10:02 am

    I don’t know, while there are definitely aspects of the article I object to (including the choice of the word “brutal”), I’d argue the overall thrust/point of the article is a good one.

    There *should* be a genuine discussion about masculine sexuality, it’s good and it’s bad. He may not have hit the right notes in starting the topic, but he did at least suggest we need to look beyond post-modern stupidities. And if that topic was approached with realism, where society actually encourage men to have a health sexuality, they’d eventually realize that the only way to do that is a society ordered towards the family.

    As opposed to the current situation where men are told to become good feminists and women are taught they should be able to do whatever they want sexually, without consequences for themselves nor impinging on their right to ask men to be good little feminist angels (except when that’s not what they want for their own personal sexual desires).

  2. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    28 November 2017 @ 10:22 am

    Here are some specific criticisms.

    men have become, quite literally, unbelievable.

    All men? Why? Because some talking heads and some perverts in positions of authority say and do bad things?

    What any given man might say about gender politics and how he treats women are separate and unrelated phenomena.

    And this is peculiar to men?

    the string of revelations … have [sic] forced men to confront what they hate to think about most: the nature of men in general.

    Really? I thought the thing men feared the most was watching rom coms.

    Most are shocked by the reality of women’s lived experience.

    The premise here is that now, suddenly, we have come face to face with “women’s lived experience.” Really? What has been revealed in the last couple weeks that we haven’t heard before? And who says what we’ve heard is true?

    For most of history, we’ve taken for granted the implicit brutality of male sexuality.

    Implicit? I’ve never harmed a woman in my life, and certainly not sexually. Where is this “implicit brutality”?

    Fear of the male libido has been the subject of myth and of fairy tale from the beginning of literature:

    Blah blah blah. There are also witches and succubi and female demons and sirens and harpies and whatnot. Are we going to create a philosophy of female sexuality based on them?

    Professionally, too, I have seen just how profoundly men don’t want to talk about their own gendered nature.

    Maybe because that sounds like psychobabble.

    The crisis we are approaching is fundamental: How can healthy sexuality ever occur in conditions in which men and women are not equal?

    Blech. How can it occur when they are equal — whatever that means.

    let’s start with a basic understanding that masculinity is a subject worth thinking about.

    Sure, sure. And let’s start by saying that it’s inherently brutal. Genius.

  3. William
    28 November 2017 @ 2:51 pm

    I’m with Ken, other than some minor challenges, overall the article seemed on point. I didn’t perceive it as a hit job on men. The following are key take-aways from my reading–none of which I have a major objection to.

    -Recent revelations has created an environment where the nature of men cannot be ignored and should be openly discussed.
    -Men haven’t deeply focused on their nature and in some ways are unprepared for a discussion of this nature.
    -Much of our current culture has been strongly influence by male sexuality (and it’s been taken for granted).
    -There’s a line between “desire” and “actions” driven by male sexuality that each man must consciously determine how to manage.
    –A healthy sexual existence for men requires continuing education–which most don’t get once they leave school.
    –Men are willing to talk about the pain of women because it somewhat relieves them from having to discuss their own nature.
    –Men should start with a basic understanding that masculinity is a subject worth thinking about. Being a civilized man means considering what you are.

  4. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    28 November 2017 @ 3:03 pm

    -Recent revelations has created an environment where the nature of men cannot be ignored and should be openly discussed.

    Who is blocking that conversation?

    -Men haven’t deeply focused on their nature and in some ways are unprepared for a discussion of this nature.

    I don’t know what that means. Is the implication that women have focused deeply on their nature, and men are lagging behind? I see no evidence of that.

    -Much of our current culture has been strongly influence by male sexuality (and it’s been taken for granted).

    Of course it has. It’s also been influenced by female sexuality. This seems about as interesting as “the sky is blue.”

    -There’s a line between “desire” and “actions” driven by male sexuality that each man must consciously determine how to manage.

    Of course. Same with women. Again, I don’t see how this is interesting or notable in any way.

    –A healthy sexual existence for men requires continuing education–which most don’t get once they leave school.

    And women do? Again … where is the evidence that men are somehow different on any of these alleged points/

    –Men are willing to talk about the pain of women because it somewhat relieves them from having to discuss their own nature.

    Psychobabble.

    –Men should start with a basic understanding that masculinity is a subject worth thinking about. Being a civilized man means considering what you are.

    Men talk about masculinity all the time! (“That’s so gay!” “You throw like a girl,” etc.) They just do it in a way that some people don’t like.

    In short, I don’t see anything of any value in this list. There’s no reason to believe men have a unique problem on any of these points. It’s not (for example) as if women carefully study femininity all their lives, and reflect deeply on it. By and large they just watch silly movies and think that’s the way romance should be, or they get nutty ideas from their women’s studies classes. Or — more likely — they see a meme made by a friend who heard something from a friend who took a woman’s studies class.

  5. William
    28 November 2017 @ 3:47 pm

    Do I detect a severe case of whataboutism in your response? 😉 I respect your views, but from my reading, the article didn’t seem to be positioned as men vs women…but about how this recent wave of revelations relates to the nature of men. The concepts may not be new or profound but I found most worth considering. As well, if openly discussed, might generate a reasonable dialogue about masculinity.

    QUOTE: Men talk about masculinity all the time! (“That’s so gay!” “You throw like a girl,” etc.).

    You honestly think talking about gay and effeminate behavior is masculine???

  6. Greg Krehbiel GregK
    28 November 2017 @ 3:54 pm

    Okay, so somebody writes a post about how Asians have this problem. No, this list of problems. But they’re actually the same problems that everybody else has. And then someone asks, “how is this different from everyone else?”

    Is that what “whataboutism” means

  7. Robin R.
    28 November 2017 @ 4:25 pm

    I think that it is interesting to think about the differences between the influences of male sexuality and those of female sexuality on the culture. Playboy came before Playgirl. But maybe romance novels had a sexual undercurrent that women enjoyed.

  8. RR
    28 November 2017 @ 10:00 pm

    Romance novels are basically just porn for women. It’s interesting that society doesn’t treat them as porn though.

  9. William
    29 November 2017 @ 2:11 am

    @RR, I wonder if 50 Shades of Grey would have been so widely accepted if it was written and promoted by a man.

    In other news (relative to female libido), it seems now people want to make Monica Lewinsky a “victim”. I sympathize that she was treated badly but wasn’t this the consequences of her choices?

    Monica Lewinsky Blasts Upcoming TV Special

  10. pentamom
    29 November 2017 @ 11:10 am

    William, I think it’s a product of the widely held misconception that responsibility and guilt are zero-sum. Some would say, if Monica Lewinsky was out after powerful men, and chose to involve herself that way, she can’t be a victim of a powerful man. Well, yes, she can, because powerful men still have a responsibility not to take advantage of foolish women. OTOH, others would say, if Bill Clinton took advantage of a power relationships, then Monica Lewinsky isn’t responsible for or guilty of anything bad. Well, yes, she is, because she never denied that the relationship, such as it was, was consensual, therefore she admits she had other options.

    So Monica Lewinsky can be both responsible for herself and a victim of him. In some situations people are purely victims. But not every situation that has a victim, has a victim with absolutely no responsibility for the situation.

  11. Greg Krehbiel Greg Krehbiel
    29 November 2017 @ 11:43 am

    Yes, I think pentamom is right that there can be overlapping guilt.

    If a woman gets drunk at the office party and flirts around, she has some responsibility / guilt for whatever happens to her. But if a man takes advantage of a drunk woman, he has responsibility / guilt for that.

  12. William
    29 November 2017 @ 12:25 pm

    @Pentamom, based on Lewinsky’s testimony that this was a conscentual relationship and she was of conscenting age, I’m still not convinced that she was a victim and shouldn’t have born the consequences for her actions. It seemed to be a conscious choice she made to have a relationship of a sexual nature with a married man. As I recall, there didn’t seem to be any pressure to to get her to comply. The reaction she’s gotten seems to be more of unintended consequences for her deliberate choices.

    Overall, I feel bad for how things went for Lewinsky. She got a LOT of bad press and public shaming for her actions. Yet, it seems that her choices created this situation. That said, she wasn’t alone in this wrong-doing. Clinton was 1000% wrong in this case and should have known better. Any consequences he received (and should have received) were rightly applied to him.

  13. pentamom
    29 November 2017 @ 2:46 pm

    William, my point wasn’t so much that Lewinsky was a victim. It’s that it’s possible for a woman to be both partially responsible and a victim. That’s my main point.

    However, Bill Clinton as a man had absolute responsibility not to use a woman for his own gratification, no matter how willing she was to allow it. So I have trouble saying that she was in no sense a victim of his bad behavior. I’m not sure what the word “victim” means if it doesn’t mean “someone toward whom someone else has acted deliberately and harmfully,” which happened.

  14. William
    29 November 2017 @ 4:46 pm

    Pentamom, I understood theoretically a woman could find herself in a situation in which she is both responsible and a victim. Yet, I was specifically referencing Lewinsky and don’t feel this applies to her situation. If she was somehow coerced, deceived or a minor, I might feel differently. According to her testimony, not only was she a willing participant but at times an instigator and conspired with Clinton to lie to keep the relationship secret. This sounds like a consensual relationship where both parties made really bad decisions that later came back to haunt them.

    That said, because she was complicit, doesn’t excused Clinton of his responsibility to do the right thing. He shouldn’t have engaged in flirting or any type of sexual activity. Once she confessed she had a crush on him, he should have taken immediate action to stop things.

    So, using the definition you cited, if Lewinsky was a victim of Clinton’s behavior, was he a victim too? Given her testimony under oath, Lewinsky acted deliberately and harmfully towards him. Her flirting, giving gifts, initiating certain sexual acts, lying to him that she didn’t tell anyone about their affair, pressuring him to find her another job and other actions eventually became highly problematic for him when it became public.

  15. pentamom
    29 November 2017 @ 10:36 pm

    Sure, he was a victim of her predatory pursuit. I don’t have a problem saying that. They victimized one another. Did she treat him like a victim? Sure she did. She set out to use him for what she wanted, and achieved it.

    Since I don’t consider victim a category that confers some kind of positive moral value, I don’t have a problem calling someone both a victim and a perp.

  16. William
    30 November 2017 @ 3:38 am

    I see your point. Going back to my earlier post, my issue is that Lewinsky and supporters are using victimization in a more colloquial sense. It’s almost as if she were an innocent party and didn’t do things that contributed to the public’s reaction. As I said before, I feel badly that she was ripped to shreds but it was partly her choices and actions that created the situation. It’s not a virtue for her to now attempt to shift the focus from herself to Clinton or Starr. If anything, she and Clinton should be the central focus, with Starr being ancillary.

Share your thoughts

Re: The unexamined deceit of the female libido







Tags you can use (optional):
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>