The Missing Parts Of Life

August 26, 2010

I like to think of myself as expounding at length on deep insights, but I have various things come to mind that don’t fit that, so I’ll just say what I have on my mind.

Ferdinand Bardimu linked to this segment from Blade Runner, in a rather offhand fashion, talking about the end of “Seasons Of Tumult And Discord”-

Everybody knows Blade Runner was inspired by the Philip K. Dick story “Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?” but few have actually read that story and understand how profoundly different from the movie it is. The movie completely drops the religion of Mercerism; the replicants are all bad, not sympathetic, and not very smart. In the story there is a bounty hunter named Resch who is unusually cold-blooded, and Dekker accuses him of being a replicant himself; Resch willingly submits to the test and passes. In the movie some see Dekker as really being a replicant; in an interview director Ridley Scott says that is the case, but I don’t see it.

I have always thought the story to be much better and morally profound than the film; and yet watching this clip I see it differently. Dekker is the protagonist, but the drama and conflict all come from super replicant Roy Baty, played by Rutger Hauer.

As we see in the clip, in addition to being physically powerful Baty is also highly intelligent. He is tortured by the realization his lifespan is very limited; his point of view is that his experience is unique and thus his life is valuable. And he is willing to do anything to stay alive.

In the end Baty realizes that while his experience is unique, it will also be lost and forgotten forever. This is the ultimate in mortality; people hope to have immortality of the soul, or to have their life continued through their children, or to be remembered somehow. Baty has lost hope of all of this; by deciding not to kill Dekker, he can affirm the precious value of life itself; I don’t think he believes he somehow continues to live through Dekker.

Tyrell encourages Baty to accept the limitations of his life and enjoy it for what it is, but while he can accept and let go, he is still filled with regret at the end.

On some fundamental level most men gauge their value on the kind of woman they can get. However rich or successful you might be, without a hot woman it’s all pretty hollow. For the typical beta guy, he has a typical woman and he can accept that. If you don’t have the kind of woman you want, but you have a woman, it’s not so bad.

If you relationships with women are seriously compromised- if you can’t get a woman at all- you may feel you have an unbearable defect to your life, something you must go to any lengths to repair. Roy Baty went back to his maker and asked for a fix, but was unable to get one. The truth is many people are handicapped in different ways, and some are handicapped in such a way, mentally or physically, through some combination of genetics and life circumstance, that establishing a relationship with a woman is very difficult.

You can’t go back to your maker and get a fix. Any number of “game” products and services are sold in the familiar tradition of American hucksterism promising to cure your problem, if not overnight, at least in a few months. I lack faith in these, but I have always been accused of negative thinking.

There is some balance between accepting your life for what it is and trying to improve it. When I figure out what that is I’ll let you know.

Internal Dominance

August 24, 2010

I have a great deal of trouble getting myself going to do things. I have had a couple of projects I have been meaning to do for a long time. I got started the other day but I was thinking about why this is.

I have set out and accomplished various things, but only when I have been motivated by some prize I really wanted. Just grinding out something I needed to do but didn’t really feel like has always been really hard for me.

Freud divided the personality into three parts, the unedited urges, or Id, the rational thinking part, or Ego, and the controlling part, or Superego. A psychiatrist in the 70’s did a pop culture version of this- Eric Berne called it “Transactional Analysis” and the parts the Child, the Adult and the Parent.

Obviously you need a reasonable balance between these- too much Parent and you’ll be uptight, too much Child and you’ll be disorganized. I’m not really sure what too much Adult would be like.

In any case I think I lack a strong Parent, or Superego. My parents were strict and controlling but they did it passive-aggressively rather than through strength and authority. I don’t think the idea that being controlling with children will make them weak is true. If you tell a child “You have to do this, even if you don’t want to because I’m your parent and I’m telling you you have to” the child learns the valuable lesson that some things have to be done even when you don’t want to and can learn to internalize this voice and direct his own behavior in situations like this.

Providing the child with a reason, to the extent he can understand it, is reasonable but if the situation is framed in terms of “you should do this because of this” the child is free to come up with reasons why it’s OK not to do it. Berne divided the three parts into their own three parts- the Adult in the Child he called the “Little Professor” and I’m guessing parents who try to be reasonable with their children are quite  familiar with this part of the personality.

The bottom line is I just need to learn to make myself do things. I suspect low status, low dominance people in general have parents with low dominance, and this part of the personality is weak in them. But if you don’t direct others you at least have to direct yourself.

“Seasons Of Tumult And Discord” Is Gone

August 24, 2010

I hate to see it go. It was enjoyable and insightful. Blogging is a weird thing though, particularly personal blogging; you leave a lot hanging out there. Apparently they got suspended for TOS awhile back, maybe they had a problem again and said to hell with it.

In any case, thanks for sharing guys.

Mental Problems And Relationships

August 21, 2010

Ferdinand Bardimu had a discussion with blogger Robert Lindsay about mental disorders and social rankings-

The question is the specific type of mental problem. Lindsay says he has found anxiety and depression to be relationship killers. I have also. He says that while some of the OCD sufferers he deals with are without women, others are not.

Social anxiety is the worst problem for relationships. It simply makes meeting people difficult or impossible. Depression is pretty bad also, as it saps energy and makes you not fun to be around. Lindsay doesn’t mention in any detail what kinds of obsessive compulsive behavior the guys he deals with display, but probably some kinds are hard for women to deal with, and others are relatively benign.

The typical problem for a low-status male is probably social anxiety, anxiety and anxiety-related depression. These are not irrational, as mental problems are often assumed to be. If you don’t have any social power many people can make your life difficult, which is fear-inducing. If your interactions with others are likely to be met with negative feedback if you step outside of certain bounds, that is fear-inducing. Experiencing fear much of the time is draining, which leads to depression.

These are very difficult to cure, but they can be coped with or managed. Economic security is fundamental; I have talked about fitting in at the workplace and staying employed before. Social anxiety is a really hard thing. The simplest way of dealing with anxiety is exposure- the anxious person is placed in the anxiety-provoking situation and the anxiety eventually dies out. This works but is very painful, and as people generally avoid pain at all costs, doesn’t actually cure many people of anxiety.

Game should be some antidote to social anxiety as it purports to provide a toolkit of social skills to cover a variety of situations. And yet approach anxiety is acknowledged to be one of the biggest barriers to effective game and there doesn’t seem to be a lot of consensus on how best to deal with it.

Starting from the viewpoint that social anxiety is not irrational and in fact is a learned adaptive response, I have some ideas on that for my own benefit I’ll write something about later.

Relationship Types And Dominance Levels

August 17, 2010

One of the most important ideas of libertarian economic thought is that is any voluntary, non-coercive exchange or relationship, both parties benefit, and thus the exchange or relationship is good. Classical economist David Ricardo looked askance at this- with his theory of rent, he showed that one party, in this case a tenant farmer, might receive only enough to keep from starving. (Karl Marx stretched this out over 2000 pages, but that’s all Marxism is, really.)

Robert Ringer, in “Winning Through Intimidation”, shows that the pot will be divided, but not equally, fairly, justly, or whatever, but by who just took it, and you could avoid getting screwed by learning the art of intimidation. And this is probably a great book for anybody interested in game, as well as business or social relationships in general.

Male-female relationships fall into a few different categories based on dominance levels. Not all are of direct interest to us but I’ll go through the range for purposes of illustration.

Pimp/prostitute- highest level of dominance, manipulation and control. A man who is good with women might be described as a “pimp”, but this is highly metaphorical.

Aggressive criminal/groupie- this would describe men such as outlaw bikers, mafia members, senior gang members, other types of organized or sometimes unorganized criminals. Such men don’t prostitute their women, although bikers might have girlfriends who work as strippers. These women might carry drugs, hide weapons, or otherwise assist criminal activity without getting directly involved. They’re excited by the tough, aggressive, “rebellious” behavior of these men- see “Goodfellas” or “Wiseguy”, the book it came from for an example.

These women, of course, are not normal or sane, you aren’t going to run across them and if you do run for the door. What do women get out of these relationships and why do they do it? It’s not worth thinking about. Here are the kinds of things normal people see-

Alpha relationship- the man is in control, and exercises leadership. This describes the dating relationships of alphas and some marriages. The relationship of marriage in Western society is strongly oriented around equality and partnership- in ‘The Physiology Of Marriage” Balzac talks about the difference in the status of women in northern and southern Europe, and this is not a feminist or Victorian invention but something that goes back into the sands of time. In Viking society the wife legally had control over the household finances. Because of this I think maintaining alpha status in marriage is, if not difficult, something few men are prepared for. See “Married Man Sex Life” for ideas on doing this.

I think this is what makes men and women the most happy, a relationship with some level of male control and leadership. But I think it is hard to maintain as men tend to lose their dominance over the life of the relationship. Thus an alpha relationship turns into a beta relationship, which is not too bad.

Beta relationship- man and woman are “equal” or “partners”, and I put these in quotes because in reality the woman has more dominance and control. This is what the majority of relationships are like. Women like alphas but they are in short supply. They select on other qualities as well- appearance, social status, financial status, probability of future success, amiability, etc. Still in the typical relationship the man will have some degree of dominant characteristics.

The bad news is if the man doesn’t a lot of dominance to begin with, and loses it in the course of the relationship, things can go very wrong- he may become the dreaded “kitchen bitch”. The content beta to despised kitchen bitch story is the story of much of American manhood.

Part of the problem is, what are you looking for and what do you hope to achieve? If you want a woman to provide you with comfort and support when you are feeling weak, you may have a dangerous and unsupportable expectation- see “What Is Love?”

But let’s look at some other relationship types.

Dominant woman- Men and women have varying levels of dominance, so paired off it would not be possible for the man always to be the more naturally dominant. Also some cultures have more female dominance, Jews obviously, Italians less obviously (Mario Puzo modeled the godfather after his mother, David Chase modeled Tony Soprano’s after his), and the Irish. I suppose these can work but I don’t think either men or women are really happy with them.

Companionate- some women, in their late 30’s or older, just want a guy to do things with, to talk to, and have sex with, and his dominance isn’t a big deal to them. I think if a woman does not want to have kids, dominance is not much desired and may be a negative, you can fill in the sociobiological reasons for that. I have found myself in relationships with women who didn’t want to have kids on just this basis.

If you’re an omega the problem is to avoid being dominated, at least unpleasantly. If you can assert yourself a relationship with a little bit of female dominance might be OK. However Athol Kay of “Married Man Sex Life” attributes his success to being with a woman who is naturally somewhat submissive. Building up your own strength to the point where you can do this is the key.

This Is Kind Of Sick, But…..

August 16, 2010

It seems Lindsay Lohan is doing a biopic of 70’s porn star Linda Lovelace-

For younger readers Linda Lovelace was famous for the pornographic movie Deep Throat. She later said she had been forced into doing it and other porn films. The Wikipedia entry for her, if you want the whole sick, sad story, is here-

Her story is that of millions of prostitutes and for that not all that unusual or interesting. She was coerced and manipulated, but the comment that she never took responsibility for her actions probably has some truth to it. On the other hand her extremely strict upbringing, rather than helping her deal with bad people, probably left her with little ability to think for herself and more prone to manipulation. The loss of her child to involuntary adoption was a sever blow; she was probably in the mood to rebel, and unfortunately picked a bad guy to do it with.

The real point of interest here is Lindsay Lohan’s comment, about Lovelace’s husband, that “he was dark and he was mysterious and he was rough and it was different than anything she had experienced in life, and girls like that kind of stuff.” Well, some girls do. The manosphere likes to go to the worst places that sociobiology can take you; this is nothing but a sad and extreme case of the worst of human nature.

Nonetheless it establishes a point on the range of dominance demanded by women. I’m going to list the different types of relationships, based on dominance, control, and manipulation, and how they work for the guy. This is an example of the pimp-prostitute relationship, but I’ll go into them all later.

Workplace Domination

August 9, 2010

My boss is basically just a steaming POS who stumbled into the business (which was set up by a friend) and is in general an all-around appalling human being. I put up with his shit as I have to and call his shit when I need to. I was pretty sure a couple of weeks ago I was getting fired (or whatever they do when you’re an independent contractor.)

That didn’t happen, although another guy seems to have been partially trained. He might be replacing, or possibly replacing, the other guy, but when I brought the subject up it was ignored, which made me think he is intended to replace me. I believe he is lacking the final event which would allow him to step in, and when this happens I guess I will know what the deal is. I was looking forward to being able to go home and relax, but for now I still need to deal with the scumbag.

From a legal and professional standpoint, he works for me, but I tend to humor him as much as I feel comfortable and only assert my authority when I really need to. I learned pretty early on he likes to talk shit and bait me and I just ignore that. I think he is accustomed to dealing with sniveling yes-men though and I was wondering why he hasn’t just fired me earlier.

My latest blow was he told me yesterday he wasn’t going to pay me some money he was supposed to start paying me now. He said he would later but didn’t say when. This is a very sleazy business and this happens all the time, it’s happened to me before, but it’s still pretty crappy and in your face.

It occurred to me that while I occasionally stand up for myself, on the whole he can be a dick and I put up with it, and he enjoys it and he enjoys my discomfiture. As much as I hate the guy I don’t want my emotions to get in the way. Jobs are very hard to come by these days and if I quit or get fired it could be a year before I get another one. I spent 2009 unemployed and I can’t repeat that. I want to keep working, and making money, and get the money he owes me, and leave when I get a better job. On the other hand I have to find a way to keep him from sucking the life out of me.

One thing I’m going to do is check him more often. Last week I let him perform a certain function the other guy lets him do, but I have never wanted to relinquish. In the spirit of cooperation after he didn’t fire me I let him do it, which is a big deal to him as much as he was pretending it wasn’t. But yesterday I didn’t. Screw him. Goodwill is a two-way street.

The weak underbelly of anybody is their ego. I’m going to have to attack his false image of himself as a professional, which he most definitely is not. Other than that it’s “Fuck you asshole. I’ll put up with your shit for money but I’m not pretending I’m your friend or pretending you know what you’re doing.”