Friday, March 8, 2013

Game and homo economicus

Rollo brilliantly cuts to the core of what it is to be a man in the most pragmatic sense:
I was recently reading a forum thread I got a link back from and the topic was the timeless classic, “what make a man a man?” The predictable responses were all present: Confidence, Responsibility, Integrity, and all of the other subjectively definable esoteric attributes you’d expect. I thought about this question in terms of the difference in consumer influence of both men and women. I’m not an economist, but I am an ideas guy, and it occurred to me that the nuts and bolts of being a man is to produce more than you consume.

To maintain a wife, children, even a dog, a man must produce more than his consumption. Once you’ve lost that capacity (or never developed it) you are less of a man – you are a burden. You must be provided either by charity or guile, but you’re not producing.

On a limbic level, women’s hypergamy filters for this. You see, while women have the societal option to provide for themselves, there is no onus on her to produce anything more than she herself consumes. For all the fem-centric male professions of how rewarding being a stay-at-home Dad is, what eats away at them is the hindbrain awareness that he is not producing more than he consumes. This is the same awareness etching into a woman’s psyche when she’s the one doing the provisioning.
At the very least, it is a simple and straightforward concept with the potential to considerably clarify the issue.

32 comments:

szook said...

Well stated, indeed.

ThirdMonkey said...

When you denigrate masculinity and partiarchy and elevate feminism over femininity, you get an entire society that consumes more than it produces, is addicted to debt, and elect politicians who do the same.

Matthew Walker said...

Corollary: Women feel naturally comfortable taking more than they give. "What's mine is mine, what's yours is ours". It's common for them to be instinctively outraged when they're expected to produce or contribute as much as men do to an enterprise.

Another corollary: Roissy has said that natural alphas can get inside women's heads and think the way they think. There's a certain kind of natural alpha, a kind of man who may sometimes have very little social rank but always rolls in pussy, who feels comfortable living off women.

"...there is a big difference between me and these other gentlemen: They all pay their women, and all my women pay me!"

SarahsDaughter said...

MW, isn't your second corollary what Rollo is calling being provided for by guile?

Heh said...

America today is a Big Giant Woman in so many ways -- and definitely in the sense that it consumes more than it produces.

The One said...

One thing to add is not all resources are material. The apostles consumed more than they produced in the material realm, but produced more than they consumed in the spiritual realm.

OT: What happened to sunshinemary's blog?

DrTorch said...

Very much in line w/ Gen 1.

Did automation contribute to feminization along w/ the 19th Amendment?

I might believe that they worked together to some extent. When automated factories took hold in Post WWII US, men weren't really producing anymore. That's why it was expected they'd retire in 20 years (look at union contracts)...the work was mundane and draining, even if not physically demanding. But even then men still produced by building their homesteads in the suburbs and working on cars.

Eventually, through zoning and overwhelming safety regulations (aka feminism), even those outlets were taken away. Production became generating paperwork in the service industry (banking, insurance, government).

Doom said...

I don't know what that is, exactly. I don't think it is production numbers, as it is a need to satisfy to the mind that something real, and useful, and that which uses real skills and talents, is being done by my own hands. It has to be legitimate, too.

Actually, when that doesn't happen, the natural inclination for me, and for most other men I met who had become disabled, was to commit suicide. It's like a switch goes off saying the gig is up, punch out one final time and that will be that. I tried... Draino, poison, a shotgun... Eventually I realized I was stuck here, and even a condemned man earns amnesty after a mere two failed attempts on his life. I have to wonder if the stronger the impulse, the greater the felt need to end the life?

Even so, I still feel like a scourge. It's one sin I can't get forgiven, because technically it isn't a sin. Gah! Unless or until I can work again I will always hate this form of life to a degree, and beyond just being incapacitated and not completely of free will due to those limits. I learned to live, initially, out of suicide exhaustion and a phenomenon after the last attempt, then more as a duty to God, Who I became close with a while back, if I have learned to enjoy some things. It seems serving God can... lead to more than just dry duty.

Whatever it is, it is deep, this notion to do, work, create, build, break, kill, whatever it is he is good at. At least for men who haven't been raised as panty-wastes.

facepalm said...

This is the beta definition of a man. Which is useful to women and alphas, who don't have to produce anything but tingles to get everything the betas wish they could.

Boogeyman said...

Just turned 43. In the last 6 months I've had a stroke, heart attack/bypass and 2 staff infections. I can attest to the loss of confidence, the feeling that a good part of my manhood has slipped away. My whole life I've provided for, protected, given guidence. Now There is no job, no car... if it weren't for my sister letting me live with her and taking care of me I might be homeless. I used to work in the worst hood in the city, at night. Despite that I never really knew fear. I stared down feral pit bulls, gang bangers, and angry drug addicts. Now, in my reduced contition, I am painfully aware of how vulnerable I am just taking my proscribed walks around the block where I live. I can only imagine that this, to some small degree, is what it feels like to be female. If it weren't for the prospect of recovering most of my health and strength I could easily see myself commiting suicide. It's not about being the beta-provider for my nieces (to whom I've been stand in father for), it's about being able to effect my environment, being able to protect myself if need be, and just doing the normal things a man can be expected to do.

Cryan Ryan said...

Early on in the relationship, my lady found herself in the position of absolutely raking in the big bucks. It was a temporary situation, and involved a lot of overtime.

She was sticking 3/4 of her wages into savings.

One day, out of the blue, she gets up on the wrong side of bed, and absolutely tears into me - while I'm half asleep - and then she goes off to work in a huff. It wasn't clear what she was angry about - just that she was earning a lot more than "her share".

Since I had the day to think about it, I wrote down the pertinent facts...

1) I was earning the same then as I had when she met me.
2) I owned my house, (built it out of pocket) and it cost her nothing to live there.
3) Both our vehicles were paid for, and I paid all the utilities.
4) All the excess money she had been earning - she still had - in savings. And was free to take with her should she decide to leave.
5) In short, nothing had changed except her temporary hike in income.
6) Her only expenses were maintaining a car, and some groceries.

When I presented my case, she was sort of embarrassed. She said "I hadn't thought of it that way".

By this time she was apologetic and said she wasn't even sure why she had suddenly had this urge to lash out.

Doom said...

facepalm,

That's bunk. If you can't even reliably get out of bed to enjoy being alpha it takes the zing out of life, hard. To whit, in spite of being crippled, since being crippled, and subtracting 5 years of recovery from typical alpha type behavior (celibacy until marriage, after coming to religion), I've had... 30 women in those 20 years, engaged to two of them. So, yeah, no. My first was a sugar momma, to be sure, even. But disability kicked in and I didn't need one, so it was just about... whatever it's about at any give time. I even had two girlfriends (lovers in case you need specifics) at a time, just wasn't really my thing.

Try being truly gimped up sometime. Then we will chat.

swiftfoxmark2 said...

The Trust Dance of the Manly Brotherhood of Men

Fun side fact: Shin Chan was voiced by Laura Bailey, who also voices the centuries old (yet still retaining teenaged angst) Serena of Skyrim's Dawnguard DLC. Just makes me chuckle when I see her in the game after having watched the above video...

Stickwick said...

Boogeyman,

I can only imagine that this, to some small degree, is what it feels like to be female.

For those of us who are honest about our natural vulnerable state and have no delusions about "empowerment," yes. However, we are also programmed to rely on others (i.e. men) for protection; for those of us who don't have feminist chips on our shoulders, it does not make us feel diminished in any way. This is where your situation is quite different from that of a woman.

It sounds like you've been through an awful lot. Best wishes to you for a speedy recovery, and for a full life once you get back on your feet. Also, don't underestimate your importance to your nieces. Providing for them is nice, but your biggest contribution to them is in terms of your masculine influence.

Rex Little said...

All this implies that taking care of a home and raising children is not productive. I don't know that I'd buy into that.

Bob Wallace said...

Men have no incentive to produce when deluded women have transferred their allegiance from individual men as "patriarchs" to the government as patriarch. Women can deny it all they want, but they are 100% dependent on men.

Nah said...

All this implies that taking care of a home and raising children is not productive. I don't know that I'd buy into that.

It is not. It does not generate wealth. It consumes wealth, and requires the man to have wealth in excess of his own needs in order to support it.

In the old days, having kids was an investment in the future, because in due course they would help on the farm and otherwise contribute to household wealth production. Now this is no longer the case, and kids are pure consumption (not investment) from birth until the time they leave home (and often, long after that).

Doom said...

Nah,

+1

Rex Little said...

@Nah

I guess it depends on how you define "wealth." Is the health and well-being of your children of value to you? If so, doesn't it increase the value in your life, and therefore your wealth, when someone does things which benefit your children?

Looking at it another way: if someone takes care of children and is paid for it (say, a pediatrician), does he not generate wealth?

Nah said...

The subject here is economics -- i.e., material and financial wealth.

Having children and raising them does indeed create non-financial (i.e., emotional) rewards, but there is no question that this carries a very significant financial cost.

if someone takes care of children and is paid for it (say, a pediatrician), does he not generate wealth?

No, that someone is consuming the wealth the child's parents create. If a doctor generated wealth by treating patients, then he would pay you to treat you or your kids, not you him.

Despite what the vast education lobby would have you believe, everything associated with raising children is consumption, not investment. Every dollar you put into it is gone forever -- there is no expectation that the dollar will generate a future increase in wealth or a future income stream (which is what investments do). As a parent, you hope that such expenditures increase the chances that your kids will survive and reproduce, thus ensuring your genetic survival -- but ironically, at a certain point, spending money on the education of female children actually decreases the chances they'll have kids.

Rex Little said...

OK, let's revisit one of the key points in the original post:

To maintain a wife, children, even a dog, a man must produce more than his consumption.

If a pediatrician (or a schoolteacher, or anyone else who makes his living caring for children in some way) isn't producing wealth, then the above is false for every one of those who has a wife and kids.

Also, raising children might not benefit the parents financially, but it certainly pays off for the children. Is that not materially productive?

Nah said...

To maintain a wife, children, even a dog, a man must produce more than his consumption.

If a pediatrician (or a schoolteacher, or anyone else who makes his living caring for children in some way) isn't producing wealth, then the above is false for every one of those who has a wife and kids.


It is necessary to distinguish between the creation of wealth and its transfer from place to place. The transfer of sufficient wealth from you to a doctor such that the doctor is able to support a wife and kids does not mean that he has created the wealth to support them, only that you gave him more than he needed to support himself alone (which is fine, you got something in exchange for it).

The difference between Lakeesha the welfare queen, to whom the government gives enough money to support four appalling brats, and Renata the public school teacher, to whom the government gives enough money to support four appalling brats, is simply that Renata is required to show up at a certain place and time and "do something" for her money. In both cases, no wealth is created, only transferred, for all that the wealth is subsequently transferred to the appalling brats.

Also, raising children might not benefit the parents financially, but it certainly pays off for the children. Is that not materially productive?

It is necessary, but it is not productive. Just like it is necessary to buy food, clothing, and shelter for yourself, but it is not productive (it is consumption).

Acksiom said...

>All this implies that taking care of a home and raising children is not productive.

Only if you mistakenly conflate "woman" with "wife & mother".

Much as Rollo and most of the commenters so far have mistakenly conflated "man" with "adult".

As I said over there, producing more than you consume is being an adult, not a man. Consuming more than you produce makes you a child or a senior, a non-adult. Women who consume more than they produce are likewise not adults.

Rex Little said...

It is necessary to distinguish between the creation of wealth and its transfer from place to place.

Except that if the transfer is part of a voluntary exchange, it creates wealth, since both parties value what they receive more than what they give up.

The transfer of sufficient wealth from you to a doctor such that the doctor is able to support a wife and kids does not mean that he has created the wealth to support them

If that's true, then the original statement I quoted ("To maintain. . .") is false, since the doctor isn't producing more than his consumption.

But actually, he is. His services are a form of wealth, which he produces and exchanges for other forms.

It [raising children] is necessary, but it is not productive

Children who are well raised and educated (educated, not necessarily schooled) will become more productive adults than those who aren't. That's what I meant when I said that it pays off materially for the children.

Brian said...

The Art of Manliness blog covered this concept a while back.

http://artofmanliness.com/2010/04/06/modern-maturity-create-more-consume-less/

Doom said...

Rex Little,

Substitute woman for Rex Little. Gah! What about yes, or no, or you are incorrect, or anything else do you not get? Some (all) women... and Rex!

Rex Little said...

What about yes, or no, or you are incorrect, or anything else do you not get?

The part where you simply say so without any logic to back it up.

Mark said...

"This is the beta definition of a man. Which is useful to women and alphas, who don't have to produce anything but tingles to get everything the betas wish they could."

True for the moment but not something that's going to be permanent. There's a common false assumption that the betas will keep on producing more than they consume and then watching the government transfer the excess over to women who have rejected them for the alpha males. It's not going to happen. Plummeting tax receipts and widening deficits are just the first indication of that. The current situation is just temporary and we will return to monogamy where beta females marry beta males because the alpha males aren't willing or able to support them and their children after the collapse of the welfare state.

Nah said...

Except that if the transfer is part of a voluntary exchange, it creates wealth, since both parties value what they receive more than what they give up.

No, every economic transaction does not create wealth, even though the concept of GDP is based on this false idea. If you buy something whose value increases over time, then the transaction creates wealth. If you buy something whose value decreases over time, thent he transaction consumes your wealth. This is why economics distinguishes between investment and consumption. If you buy a cheeseburger for $5, obviously you valued the cheeseburger more than your $5, but as soon as you eat the cheeseburger, the "wealth" represented by that cheeseburger is gone (literally consumed). It is of course necessary to consume some of the wealth you earn in order to provide food, clothing, shelter, and pleasure, but it is also necessary to invest for the future. Those who can provide both consumption and investment for themselves and others are the productive members of society. Those who consume the wealth of others - who demand that others provide them with food, clothing, shelter, pleasure, retirement, and medical care - are unproductive parasites.

If that's true, then the original statement I quoted ("To maintain. . .") is false, since the doctor isn't producing more than his consumption.

Some people, like doctors, do things that people are willing to trade their wealth for. This does not mean the doctors have created wealth.

Children who are well raised and educated (educated, not necessarily schooled) will become more productive adults than those who aren't. That's what I meant when I said that it pays off materially for the children.

As a parent, this is your fervent hope...

Rex Little said...

Nah, you seem to be saying that anyone who provides a service that others pay for, but doesn't produce a tangible good (i.e., the vast majority of people in a modern economy), is an unproductive parasite.

You're entitled to your opinion, and I won't dispute it any further.

MaMu1977 said...

@CryanRyan

Your story reminded me of listening to the "tales of woe" from divorced military wives. They'd get the 7-10 year itch, divorce their husbands, then complain about how their (literally, at 40-50% of their exes take-home pay in alimony and CS) generous "cash and prizes" wasn't enough to keep them in the manner to which they were accustomed. I'd end up having to break it down like this...

Married=base housing, food stipend and free health insurance

Divorced
No housing allowance for you (compared to the rent and utility-free accommodations as a wife)
No food allowance (your ex, despite your needs, still has to eat
No health care (benefits go to children and long-term wives, not healthy women who try to get out while the getting is good)

My favorite example-9 years married woman, living in base housing, sharing a bed with a man who just wanted creature comforts (weekly pussy, full fridge and liquor cabinet). Because free housing, utilities and food (BAS covered her grocery costs) didn't figure in her head as "value", she assumed that getting divorced would relieve her of putting out every week. Two years later, she receives half of his check ($1500), but can't afford the 3-bedroom living space or brand-name food and appliances that were her assumed "birthright" (read: the stuff that the government gave him to keep her happy, but was glad to take back when she decided to leave.) Now, after a year of seeing her "Damn him to hell/"God, how I miss him!", Facebook posts, all I can do is laugh.

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