Progressives and Learned Helplessness

Sargon of Akkad’s video Illiberal Progressives is an eloquent explanation of where progressives have become authoritarian and have gone against liberal principles. No matter your political leaning, this is a gem in help to understand today’s progressives.

The thing that bothers me the most about modern day progressives is their spreading of misinformation. The aim is not to help people make better decisions as individuals, but to gain influence, entrench tribalism and buffer followers from reality.

To illustrate using an example on the micro-scale, say you want to quit smoking. To succeed you need to turn your mind away from the urge to smoke as it comes up. Progressives want to take issue off of race and gender, yet instead of turning away from it, they pick at old scabs and focus in like a laser on genitals and skin color, exhausting it by endlessly talking and writing about it, starting censorship campaigns against perceived hate speech and creating policy aimed at fixing it. It is like the wannabe-non-smoker talking endlessly about the desire to stop smoking more than distracting from it or replacing the habit.

To turn the mind from it, would be to face bias and take it off the table. What seems to be beneficial in my own mind would be to encourage a system based upon the individual’s character, skills and merit, allowing people of different backgrounds, perspectives, physical attributes, etc. to have the opportunity to participate. That is, individualism, not based on a collective group identity or stereotypes.

Ultimately, even if you have a group of people whose identity is partially based upon oppression a generation or so ago, there are really only a couple ways to solve a cultural inequality post-conflict. 1) Create a progressive stack so that the oppressors now become the oppressed, that is, go on the warpath, and 2) taking the identity politics off the front burner and treating everyone as individuals.

Say we want to get more women into CEO positions as they aren’t there currently. The narrative that insists it is because women are being held down is in itself destructive. Not only does it put women in a place of perceived victimhood, but it means that the people who currently in those positions are racist and/or sexist oppressors. You take the power away from the “oppressed group” and grant more agency to the other group, often the “privileged” white men.

This is ridiculous and leads to ass-backwards campaigns like “ban bossy” and he-for-she. It undermines female agency, accomplishments and merit. Women too have the autonomy to choose. Often they do not make the same decisions as men. This is likely more of an outcome of biology then social constructs, though I am sure that socialization plays a role.

This thinking also inaccurately attributes an inhuman amount of agency to men, especially white men, which can lead to a lack of acknowledgement of their vulnerability. Many modern feminists believe you cannot be sexist towards white men- because they are “the patriarchy”, yet more men are homeless and have a lot less opportunity to seek help and shelter.

The sexes are different. Equality shouldn’t be about leveling out the playing field, but rising together with our own unique traits and skills. I hope that these authoritative progressive ideas gets called out more and more for what they are- prejudice. It brings people down for the sake of equality.

“A final point with which you will undoubtedly disagree: Electing people to corporate boards based on racial preferences is demeaning to the very board members placed under such conditions, and unfair to people who are qualified. A prominent friend of mine hired a partner who is a brilliant, black Ph.D. from Berkeley. The woman is constantly insulted by being asked if she got her job because of preferences; the system that creates that institutionalized insult is fundamentally wrong.”
– On quotas, Cypress CEO Responds to Nun’s Urging a ‘Politically Correct’ Board Make-up

People need opportunities to succeed, not opportunities to cash in on entitlements. The progressive stack teaches “oppressed groups” learned helplessness instead of empowerment on the individual-level.

Learnt helplessness occurs after an animal is repeatedly subjected to pain or discomfort that it cannot escape and stops trying to avoid the unwanted stimuli. Once this behavior is learned, even when given opportunities to escape and avoid the stimuli, learnt helplessness will prevent action.

One can easily (and inaccurately) attribute emotional discomfort to being part of an oppressed group. A women could, instead of being empowered by feminism, be full of fear and sadness after being repeatedly told she is oppressed by the patriarchy, more likely to fall prey to domestic violence, rape, catcalling and pay discrimination. She then may sense any criticism or challenges as evidence of her oppression, leading to inaction (beyond a new hashtag campaign) instead of opportunities to grow and be the change she wishes to see.


Jump that fence, bitch.

Affirmative action and quotas reinforce the perception of victimhood and suffering due to identity, that is, something one cannot change. Taking away the challenge, constructive criticism and opportunity to succeed through adversity is to eat away at individual responsibility and empowerment and ultimately the connective tissues of human relationships.

Seeking information about our reality helps us make better decisions as individuals. Those that are making their race or genitals the most significant part of their identity could be just as likely to be seeking power through with prejudice as those they claim to be fighting. In conclusion, we should confront bias and turn the mind away from such physical attributes because it limits our conversation and understanding.


On Scars and Cognitive Diversity

This post is a personal reflection. joker-overconfident-depressed-comic Something happened that I haven’t been able to quite settle out. I have always compared myself to men and sought to understand where the differences lay. It has never been black and white, estrogen and testosterone. I’ve had a long-standing interest in hobbies and work environments that are predominately male, or traditionally male-dominated. I can go into this in more detail later, but this tendency led me to a gym-rat lifestyle and gave appeal to physical labor jobs.

When I took a landscaping job I was much more hesitant in driving truck and trailer than my male counter-parts, almost universally. And looking back, if I had received an insult or a slight from an impatient co-worker as I choked up some courage to try, I’d probably break. This is despite understanding the need for criticism and that these jabs were intended to toughen weak spots, not kill the entire ego. Continue reading


At times I thought maybe the men’s rights people were hyperbolic and that by considering them seriously I was making a slippery slope fallacy; my supposition was just because society is predisposed to be more protective of women and prioritize the feminist narrative, this tendency does not mean they will censor countervailing ideas.

My supposition was proven false.

As I said in my previous post, I was looking forward to meeting the Honey Badger Brigade at the Calgary Expo. I’ve been going to the con since I was a teenager. I am a gamer, an artist and a writer, who has been interested in producing my own comic book. When I found the badgers online I was instantly attracted to their courage to push the boundaries on current narratives.

I share a willingness to explore new frontiers and crave the unconventional.

Alison Teiman, one of the founding Honey Badgers, has an online comic called Xenospora. She is an amazing artist and you should check it out.

Alison is also very much an advocate of women, along with being a men’s rights activist (MRA). There is palatable irony that she was thrown out of the Calgary Expo with the Badgers in their stand against censorship. Though she believes women can be agents in their own life stories without a victim-hood narrative, people at the con and others tweeting about the con, excluded her from the in-group from which they claim to speak for all women.

I am a woman. I wanted to see the Honey Badger Brigade and if I was at the females in comic books panel, I’d love to hear a wide variety of perspectives.

The Badger’s basic human rights have been violated, and with it, my ability to show public support of them at the Calgary Expo. Bullies using the feminist narrative are more than willing to take away the rights of others, including “dissenting” women.

This is what intolerance looks like. In-group preference wins out and the group undermines another’s humanity.

Alison is not a “token woman” of the MRA. Nor is she a demon. She is her own person, and a kind, talented and courageous one at that:

Even if you have no interest in gender politics, on either side, please at least take a stand against censorship.

More information:

Go Home, Gamer girl: Press release on unjust banishment from Calgary Expo


The Panel Discussion tweeted in to @calgaryexpo as harassment

The Examiner – Calgary Expo censors The Honey Badger Brigade’s anti-censorship message

Mundane Matt’s Part 1 on the Badger’s removal

Women creator group banned by “inclusive” Calgary Comic Expo

Tribalism is as tribalism does

More tribalism. Excellent points!

Brad R. Torgersen

I told George R. R. Martin I’d be writing this post — as a result of some of the polite dialogue we had at his LiveJournal page. His basic question to me was, “How can you, as a guy in an interracial marriage, put up with some of the racist and sexist stuff (a certain person) writes on his blog?” I thought this a valid question. How indeed? I didn’t have the space on LiveJournal to unpack all of my thoughts and feelings on the dread ism topic, so I thought I would do it here.

When I was a teenager, concepts like racism and sexism seemed easy to understand. People who are sexist, think the opposite gender are inferior human beings. People who are racist, think people of opposite ethnicities are inferior human beings. Both concepts are morally wrong. What seemed obvious, was obvious. I’d had this idea spoon-fed…

View original post 3,667 more words

The Edge

Only the human animal will spend its entire life—wasting it—on trying to change the minds of others, their sets of assumptions, their paradigms, how it shakes out and most importantly: the market over your personal agents of force. – Richard Nikoley, Free the Animal

The human mind, where not given full detail, tends to fill in the gaps with its own concepts, whether from a set of assumptions from similar past situations, ideology, paradigms of the time or emotional hang-ups. We long to understand our world, and sometimes when we fail to grasp truth, we seek control over reality through different routes.

Our culture tends to promote confessions of failure, labels exhibitionism as pathology, and readily ties authority with corruption, but what if this is in development of a guise to cover the cultivation of power of another type? That is, the control of narratives and ultimately, people’s thoughts and actions through a façade of “I don’t bite”. You can be a “soft” authority by appealing to a demographic that believes your narrative, even if it is one of victimhood. In fact, sharing failures, being passive, and holding a plot of injustice can get quite a bit of attention.

Tribalism is a natural in-group bias that causes us to value people with similar interests, culture and appearance to us more than those who have very different or even opposing interests and cultures. Like any bias, it is an obstacle to the truth and predisposes us to “groupthink”.

A niche is a specialized but profitable corner of a market. Although a tribe or tribes often exist in this pocket, they are often unconventional and resist conformity.

Using tribalism and niche markets I will explore the power of holding the narrative, and how marketing to a niche will ultimately take the edge off and make the founders disperse to another edge.  Continue reading

Some New (Old) Health Concepts

I will be picking up pace on producing content for this blog. Currently I am interested in some schisms in different online communities, especially the MGTOW and MRAs, and will be writing about this (as it teeters on becoming mainstream) as well as my usual interest in health, fitness and sex. As I progress as a writer I will be attempting to tackle bigger projects as more of a scientific journalist and perhaps write scripts and produce content for a youtube channel.

Right now, I mostly just follow where my interests lay and get my information second-hand, from books, blogs, and articles based on scientific literature. There are many intelligent people out there that give excellent interpretations and a holistic view of scientific studies.

In this post, I’d like to go over some gems in other blogs.

You may have heard the saying, “you are what you eat”, but what about…

1)      You are your microbiome

2)      You are how often and intensely you induce hormesis

3)      You are the casts you “wear”

Let’s check it out. Continue reading


There are some disturbing things going on behind the curtain of the word “progressive”. Some things I dare call totalitarian.

In this blog post I’d like to go over the good, the bad and the ugly uses of this word in media today.

Progressive is an easily hi-jacked word because it is like value mad-libs, like sustainable or equality. For each of these words the reader is supposed to understand what things lead to the “good” of the word based on societal consensus. However, it gives no implications as to why or how, especially on the level of the individual.

This morning I heard a news bit about women lagging in well-paid blue-collar jobs. There is an article here.

From the article,

“And, says Sugerman, women are poorly represented in jobs such as roofer, carpenter, electrician, and ironworker. All of those jobs can pay $40/hour or more once a worker reaches journeyman status. “Women are now 2.6 percent of the construction workforce,” says Sugerman, “so there’s been very little progress.”

Making progress on that gender gap starts in a smattering of nonprofit pre-apprenticeship and skills-training programs around the country. They’re supported by unions, employers, and community colleges, and teach women basic tool use, applied math, and work site job safety.”

Women aren’t going into roofing and carpentry on par with men? Well, no shit Sugerman.

There is no mention of biological differences in physical strength or endurance. No mention of men and women’s differences in choices. Just that “occupational segregation leaves women out”.

Let me try to follow this line of thinking. So, you didn’t look at the origins of these observable differences. You saw that men get paid more than women in blue-collar jobs and thought, as a society we need to close this wage gap. As most of us would agree, if women want to make more money they should have opportunities to do so without discrimination. You looked at these trades, saw all these guys being…well guys, and said, this has got to change because this is the sole reason women aren’t in the trades. You looked at women and thought, they just aren’t being educated and trained.

Way to miss the boat.

There are some amazing women in the trades and other careers that are largely dominated by men. I got to visit a wild fire crew when I was a junior forest ranger. There was only one woman, and she was pretty unique, not only in her “I am just one of the guys” attitude but her size and strength. Let’s face it, not all women can go into these occupations and be successful. Jobs with physical standards need to keep the weaker out, to protect their safety as well as their crew.

And that brings me to guys being guys. Sure, there are men out there that will harass women and it is more common in groups of blue-collar working men. But they harass each other too. I’d argue there is reason for this. Shit can happen on the worksite and individual men need to know who can handle it, who is going to have their back, who is going to handle the situation with as little emotional response as possible. Men test and feel each other out through verbal jabs. A crass comment is not the worst thing that could happen that day.

Not all men are comfortable with these environments and very few women are.

I wonder, knowing what I know about biology and testosterone (especially risk aversion), if “progress” would be steroid injections for women. Then they could lift more and be much more motivated to go into the trades, climb scaffolding to be roofers, lift walls as carpenters, and put their body up to more potential harm than being a secretary or cashier.

There, I solved the “problem”, Sugerman. No, but we want women to be women.

Perhaps we should dictate what happens at job sites and force women into the trades. Let’s censor men and change the way they behave. Let’s just be totalitarian overlords until women make just as much money as the men in these trades, not based on merit (taking it from all of those women who currently are in the trades, by the way) but based on “equality”. Women should get into their thick skulls they need to go into more blue-collar jobs, STEM fields and politics. There now society is all better, aren’t we progressive?

You know what I think would be progressive? Leaving men and women alone to make their own choices. To value what women are naturally drawn to, and give them some fucking respect. To value what men are naturally drawn to, because they are dominating the fields that keep our lights on, running water flowing and roads maintained.

If we as a society let men fall under the category of sub-human because they all just naturally “discriminate” and disrespect women we are headed to a very, very dark place. Men are not your scapegoat. Please own your shit.