Friday, August 31, 2012

The Masculinity Deficit

I am evidently an anachronism.  In many respects, I do not appreciate the “progress” we have made via the women’s liberation movement when it comes to how our boys have been indoctrinated.  I don’t like the fact that guys are seemingly no longer guys in the younger generations.  They seem to have all been feminized or out-right neutered.  What really strikes me as odd is the fact that the new American culture seems to encourage this, as the discernible differences between young men and women appears to be narrowing.

Many of the signs of this are immediately apparent when simply looking at the young men of today.  Evidently you women-folk are okay if your “man” goes and gets a manicure and his hair highlighted right along with you.  I mean, a manicure?  A guy used to do his own “manicure” with a pocketknife to get the grease or dirt out from under his fingernails.  Nowadays one would be hard put to even find one of these new metro-sexual men even carrying a pocket knife, let alone having a need to get grease out from under his nails.   

As for the clothing donned by young men today, it usually goes to one of two extremes: pants that are worn so low and baggy that his boxer shorts are showing (and just begging for a power wedgie) or they are so skinny and tight that it appears they got them from the junior girls department.

We won't even begin talking about chest waxings.

The attitudes of these men are decidedly un-masculine as well.  There is no sense of respect, let alone any modicum of a chivalrous attitude displayed towards women by these boys.  Girls are considered as objects or “Ho’s” by these self-centered punks, instead of young women with dignity whom are deserving of respect.  The fact that many of these women are as coarse and undignified and accepting of such treatment only ensures that such despicable attitudes by these men-children will continue.

I think the feminization/neutering of our young men starts in the elementary school playground these days.  No longer are boys allowed to play dodge-ball, or cops and robbers, or cowboys and Indians, let alone smear the queer.  Those games are WAY too violent for our sensitive boys of this new millennium.  We mustn’t regress and allow our little boys to run and rough-house anymore by playing such games in this new enlightened age of caring.  Heck, even making an imaginary gun with your thumb and forefinger today in such game play will likely get you expelled for violent tendencies, with a follow up trip to the psychologist to find out why little Timmy exhibited such abhorrent anti-social behavior.  Further, “robbers” aren’t really bad guys.  They are just the unfortunate victims who are negatively impacted by the draconian welfare cuts that those evil conservatives wish to enact.  As for cowboys and Indians… well talk about politically incorrect!  Why the very name of the game is offensive today!  And changing the name to “cowboys and native Americans” really tends to lose something in the translation.   I wonder if today’s youngsters even have heard of such  vile games?  And smear the queer!?!  Why even saying the name of that game in front of a teacher will likely get you a trip to the principal’s office; never mind that we older folks never even thought of the word “queer” as being a pejorative… or at least not until we reached high school.

It used to be that little Johnny would join the local Little League team and be expected to show up to practices, work to improve his fielding, throwing, and batting skills, and absolutely he had to pay attention to the games when they were in progress.  Nowadays, everyone can join and the focus is ONLY on “fun”, or so they tell us.  Why sometimes the score isn’t even kept.  Indeed, half of the kids are goofing off so much during the game that they have to ask if they won after the final inning is completed.  And of course, at the end of the season, everyone gets a trophy.  We wouldn’t want to hurt these little guys’ feelings or crush their artificially manufactured self-esteem that has been inflated through accomplishing… nothing.  Indeed, there is no incentive to work, to improve, and to achieve a goal.  It is all about “fun”, despite the fact that there really isn’t much fun without real competition, and hence most of these boys are bored accordingly.  In other words, it has no semblance to the real world.  I seem to remember that through improving my skills and working hard to get better that I actually had REAL fun.  I must have been the exception to this new age rule today, though.

And what becomes of these youngsters as they reach high school now-a-days?  Well, they look for the easy way through school.  They have been taught that they are wonderful and brilliant without ever having experienced failure or defeat and having to pick themselves up, work harder, and succeed accordingly.   Failure is something to be feared and avoided by taking the path of least resistance.  They don’t want challenges; they want undeserved praise.  They want spell-check and calculators to do the work for them.  Those few that seek excellence are castigated.  Why some schools have even gone so far as to eliminate their valedictorian so as not to make those others that didn’t work their tails off to achieve that status feel badly.  Evidently failure is something to be avoided at all cost, even if that means never challenging our young men.  They don’t learn how to effectively deal with failure and disappointment, so when real life shows up and failure does occur, these boys do not know how to pick themselves up, brush off the dirt, and walk it off.  They don’t learn that failure is often a great teacher and makes your better, if you are willing to keep working and are able to learn the lessons that such failure was trying to teach you.  Instead you see them pout, cry, and bemoan the unfairness of their situation.  Why some will even join Occupy Wall Street rallies accordingly!

So we end up with young “men” that have been told by society not to act like boys used to act.  We have told them that they are special and winners, despite having never really worked and struggled to actually achieve anything more meaningful than a X-box high score.

These young men, at best, graduate with a mediocre education, which is usually weak on mathematics and sciences.  If they go to college, it is usually to pursue a relatively easier course of studies in the liberal arts or something equally useless for the job market today.   They then are baffled why they are unable to get a $60,000 a year starting salary with their newly attained art-history degree.  Further, if they don’t go to college, they typically will live at home with mommy and daddy still providing for them as they may work a part time job and hang out with their friends, thus delaying adding any more responsibility on their already “over-burdened” shoulders.  Delaying manhood becomes the goal as far as responsibilities are concerned.  When it comes to rights and privileges of manhood, well those things must be bestowed upon these man-children immediately.  Theirs is a world where instant gratification is absolutely required for them.

These young men would rather live at home in Mom & Dad’s basement instead of venturing out on their own and making their own mark in the world.  They seem to be either incapable or unwilling to provide for their own needs.  I mean, why go through all of the hassle of actually having to get up before noon and go to work at some low-paying job where the boss doesn’t understand how brilliant Johnny is and how he is deserving of so much more money and authority, but no more responsibility… thank you.  After all, Mom and Dad will still provide for him and his needs and wants.  They want to be taken care of by their mommies and daddies rather than have the burden of taking care of a wife and family of their own, or even attempting to better themselves so that might one day be a possibility.

They expect their girlfriend to take over Mom’s job in providing for their domestic needs with the addition of sex, of course, while they both live at his parent's home.  We won't even start with the avoidance of his taking responsibility and actually marrying the woman that is supposedly loved by the boy.  The man-child isn’t interested in taking care of, providing for, or protecting a wife.  It is all about continuing to maintain his artificially created self-esteem and what HE wants.   And the young women seem to accept and be okay with these boys, until they realize after the babies start coming, that it is a lot of work when your “man” doesn’t want to provide and actually expects the women to still cater to his whims.  He simply is another child for which the woman must care and provide.  The young woman doesn't have a man and a husband on whom she can depend.  She has her baby's daddy instead.

So after a few generations now of this post-women’s-liberation and feminization of men, we are now hard-pressed to find a young man these days that has a sense of purpose, a willingness to work hard to improve life for himself and his family, and a notion that God in His wisdom created the wonderful differences between men and women for a very good reason.

Today's young men are more likely to idolize Justin Bieber or find their heroes in sparkly vampires instead of the rugged self-sufficient John Wayne hero-types of my youth.  Yep, the masculinity deficit that our post-women’s lib nation has wrought is now full of these man-boys that have been coddled and protected from real life.  They are growing up and have achieved nothing of significance accordingly.  It is exceptionally rare to find a young man these days that is willing to work hard, take personal responsibility, and try to better himself and his world.  Such real men of honor and integrity are all the more remarkable because of their scarcity these days, and lucky is the young lady that can find one and have the sense to realize the quality of his character.

On the other hand, I guess the good news for these other “men-children” is that they evidently are still qualified under today’s standards to win a Nobel Prize or perhaps even grow up to be President of the United States one day.  Yep, I am indeed an anachronism.

30 comments:

S.W. Anderson said...

"I am evidently an anachronism."

OK, no argument there.
. . .
Evidently, young men getting manicures and chest waxing is a trend in your area. It's not in my area.

I wouldn't worry about it, though. Fashionable young men of the 17th and 18th centuries wore powdered wigs, lace and ruffles, all quite feminine. Some wore jewelry and facial makeup as well. From the 1960's to 18980's many American teenage boys and men wore their hair longer than their girlfriend or wife's. Some had their hair styled in ways more familiar to beauty salons than barber shops. And for a time in the late '70's and early '80's, curvy, clinging leisure suits and, again, ruffled shirts were considered fashionable.

"Girls are considered as objects or 'Ho’s' by these self-centered punks, instead of young women with dignity whom are deserving of respect. The fact that many of these women are as coarse and undignified and accepting of such treatment only ensures that such despicable attitudes by these men-children will continue."

This is lamentable but hardly a recent development or growing trend. What you're talking about is low-class products of lousy upbringing.

The meme about children being given unearned credit and praise to give them undeserved self-esteem is dated too. There was a period, 25 or so years ago, when some well-intentioned people advanced this notion. I think the idea was that the kid not picked to be on either team in a ball game or jeered when he failed to catch a fly ball or make it to first after a weak hit would develop an inferiority complex. And with that, he'd live down to low expectations rather than strive to live up to high expectations.

There's probably something to that, but it can easily be misapplied or overdone, which is no favor to children who excel or to those who don't. And, as we've seen over years of monotonous carping and criticism, it's an approach that invites demagoguery by those who are so inclined.

I'm not sure just where and how it originated. My best guess is that it started in a book or article by a child psychologist or pediatrician somewhere.

What's not and never has been the result of good intentions is how some mean-spirited talk radio "personalities" jumped on the practice. Their goal wasn't to make anything better for anyone. It was to fill air time and twist the matter into a political harangue against their enemies. As if their political enemies were responsible for it.

In any case, this doesn't seem to be widely practiced, if it's being practiced at all any more. If it is still around, I'll bet it's not practiced to the extreme critics suggest when going on about it.

John Myste said...

What "a real man" is, is a seasonal concept, subject to the collective emotions of a society and a generation.

When someone implied that Jerry Seinfeld was not a real man, he asked, "they why are all these ties hanging in my closet?"

The point is, a real man is only logically defined biologically.

The femininity of a man is irrelevant. To assume that man's masculinity is a loss is to assume that a man must fit into your desired mold or he is less valuable. My question for you is why do you make this assumption? Why do you miss your concept of the masculine man? Is there something you aren't telling us, Mr. Paine? If there is, no worries. If you preferences don't fit into my preference mold, that's fine. I am not you, cannot be, never will be. No harm done.

T. Paine said...

Mr. Anderson, I acknowledge and agree with your observations as to how some of the physical aspects are manifested by young men throughout time. I further find much to agree with you regarding the psychology of it all. While I find the outward physical signs of the feminization of our young men to be unsettling, I am most concerned with the seeming lack of respect towards women and frankly towards themselves as individual self-sufficient men. The notion that these boys want their parents or society to take care of them is what is most detrimental to themselves and society accordingly.

As for talk radio personalities decrying this problem, I would not be surprised that this is so, although I haven’t heard anything specific on the topic during the times I have listened. That said, I suspect most of the major personalities would probably be mentioning it in roughly the same context that I have.

If a young man wants to wear skinny jeans or get his hair highlighted, such is his right, even though I don’t get it. What is really the problem, is the lack of wanting to be a responsible grown up. That is the real issue at hand. And I am afraid it is a growing trend.

John Myste said...

The notion that these boys want their parents or society to take care of them is what is most detrimental to themselves and society accordingly.

That is a completely different post, now isn’t it?

If a young man wants to wear skinny jeans or get his hair highlighted, such is his right, even though I don’t get it. What is really the problem, is the lack of wanting to be a responsible grown up. That is the real issue at hand. And I am afraid it is a growing trend.

Then why mix this issue with the topic of what one wears, as if they were somehow connected?

As for respect towards women, we are currently in one of the more respectful societies in history and in the world. Women have often been considered inferior and not worthy of the same respect as men, you know, the people in wigs in togas and other dresses.

T. Paine said...

Mr. Myste, of course what you say is true from a biological standpoint. Again, as I stated to Mr. Anderson, while I find the outward affectations of what I was raised to consider manly to be far more absent in today’s generation, that in and of itself is something I could live with and just chalk up to the differences between the generations. What I find to be really at issue is the irresponsibility of these men and yet they seem to have an overly-inflated estimation of themselves without having any justification for having such bravado. It is this shying away from responsibility, from any sense of manners or chivalry, and from any sort of wanting to improve themselves and their worlds through their OWN efforts that I find truly discouraging and less than manly.

John Myste said...

What I find to be really at issue is the irresponsibility of these men and yet they seem to have an overly-inflated estimation of themselves without having any justification for having such bravado.

I'm sorry, but the remaining "masculine men," the hillbillies, whose pickup trucks are usually parked outside some rundown bar, bowling alley, or church, are not more respectful to women than the modern metro-sexual man. In fact, they are far less, on balance.

The way someone dresses or comports himself has no correlation to respect for women.

T. Paine said...

Hmm… While I was not necessarily thinking about hillbillies, most of the good ole’ boys that I have known over the years were very respectful towards women, particularly their wives. I think your perception otherwise is perhaps jaded by television or inaccurate portrayals in the media. For those rednecks that don’t want to take care of things themselves and treat women poorly, then they are still guilty of having a masculinity deficit, in my opinion.

The implications of your statements do make a good point which I had not written about, but in reconsidering, find to be true. Let’s just sum it up like this. Regardless of one’s sense of style or how he portrays himself as a man outwardly, what is really the telling aspect of whether he is truly a man is whether or not he treats others fairly and respectfully, especially women, and further how he comports himself as to his own responsibilities. It is that aspect that will really tell the character of a real man. The fact that while I knew this, but did not acknowledge this in my original post is indeed a shortcoming on my behalf. For that, I thank you for setting me straight, John.. While I might not appreciate what I consider to be feminine in some of the young men today, that in and of itself is not what characterizes them as real men… nor should it, if I put my own prejudices aside.

On this issue, you have schooled me, Mr. Myste and I humbly admit that you are right, and I was wrong. (Even though deep inside and even in actual practice, I try to give a person the benefit of the doubt regardless of his appearance, until he proves himself via his actions.)

John Myste said...

Hmm… While I was not necessarily thinking about hillbillies, most of the good ole’ boys that I have known over the years were very respectful towards women.

Yes, I am sure. ALL of the metrosexuals I have known were respectful towards women and I have known plenty. There was not a single exception.

I do, however, have a backward hillbilly GOP-loving, church going, friend that I have known for more than 20 years who explained to me that he would like to sit on his porch and “pick off the niggers and spics one at a time,” and who refers to the “gals at his office” as “sit and spinners.

My ultra-religious grandfather openly denigrated women routinely. Let us not forget about the well-dressed Rush Limbaugh, who has no respect at all for women, or the ultra-conservative, properly dressed Tom Lykis of the Tom Lykis Show who openly advocates “fuck and dump ‘em.”

I am sure you have known some respectful good ole’ boys. I am also quite certain you have known some who were not respectful. I give you the benefit of the doubt and say that there is no known correlation between the way someone dresses and how they treat women. In reality, this may be a stretch. Those who are tolerant of diversity, including dress and women, are more likely to view women as equals. The church as a bad reputation for its treatment of women. They do not, and cannot legitimately, consider women as equals. Most people in churches, however, do dress pretty well.

T. Paine said...

I would characterize your hillbilly friend as definitely not a man then. That kind of attitude is abhorrent. As for ultra-religious people that denigrate women or anybody else for that matter, I think they need to be paying a little more attention in church and that whole “love your neighbor” thing.

I am not sure to which church you are referring, but I can assure you that in my church women and men are absolutely considered as equals in their human dignity and rights. That said, there is still an acknowledgement that God made men and women different for very good reasons. Those differences, like the diversity of which you praise and I support, are what helps strengthens relationships, particularly between husbands and wives. Why you think that church and treating women as equals with dignity and rights thereof is incompatible is baffling to me. That sure doesn’t coincide with what my Church and my God teaches.

John Myste said...

I would characterize your hillbilly friend as definitely not a man then.

Though I haven't checked, I am pretty sure he is a man. If he is not, he needs some serious estrogen injections.

As for ultra-religious people that denigrate women or anybody else for that matter, I think they need to be paying a little more attention in church and that whole “love your neighbor” thing.

Love your inferior neighbor, should they neighbor be a man, is the message, I believe. Treatment of people as equals and love of someone are two separate subjects, a fact to which my dog will attest if you need confirmation.

That said, there is still an acknowledgement that God made men and women different for very good reasons. Those differences, like the diversity of which you praise and I support, are what helps strengthens relationships, particularly between husbands and wives.

The Christian God thinks women should be subject to their male masters if I understand Genesis and 1 Timothy 2:12, and some other places I don’t feel like looking up. Women are respected as slaves at times, possessions, other times, but not as human beings with equal rights.

Why you think that church and treating women as equals with dignity and rights thereof is incompatible is baffling to me. That sure doesn’t coincide with what my Church and my God teaches.

I was being presumptive. I think I made the false assumption that the Church follows the word of God as brought to us via the Bible. Sometimes I forget about the “making it up as we go along” part.

S.W. Anderson said...

T. Paine wrote: "The notion that these boys want their parents or society to take care of them is what is most detrimental to themselves and society accordingly."

John Myste responded, in part: "That is a completely different post, now isn’t it?"

Obviously, it is.

To a great extent, many of today's young men who aren't setting the world on fire are instead doing the best they can in the circumstances that confront them.

In World War II, we had tank crews whose oldest member was 19 and B-17's piloted by 20-year-olds. John F. Kennedy became a PT boat skipper at age 25.

Fifty years ago, a high school graduate could go to work in a mine, mill or factory at a good starting wage. We had a country brimming with demand for housing and buildings of all kinds because through the Depression and WWII, construction was very limited. So the building trades boomed, with skilled workers earning good pay and benefits. Within a dozen years or so after high school, a young man in those days could have a (stay-at-home) wife, child, new or newer car and be buying a home. Millions could, so millions did.

In the 1970's, for a long list of reasons, all that began to change. The social contract was torn up and thrown away by companies that could automate many jobs away, and later, could export jobs, factories and whole industries to other countries, reaping greater profits for having done so. Great for them, but it came at a terrible cost to society.

Over the past 30 years, an increasing number of young men have gone from high school to a sort of extended adolescence that can span their twenties and lapse into their thirties. They dress like teenagers, play video games and otherwise conduct themselves much like teenagers, and many date and live together rather than marry. Some just continue living at home.

This isn't true of all. Some enter the military and grow up fast or wash out. Some go on to college, enter a profession or lucrative business, get married and start a family.

The young men you're alluding to are mostly ones who in an earlier time would've served two years in the military, if drafted, or gone from high school to a job. In most cases, by the time they were in their early twenties they had a job that paid a family supporting wage, provided decent benefits and some job security. Many of the jobs had a pathway upward, to better pay and a supervisory position. Some could take night courses at a college or technical school and eventually move up to a management position.

Those days are long gone. Many of today's young people on that track wind up in fast food, retail or a service job such as Jiffy Lube. Most of the jobs will at best support one person, if he or she lives at the parents' home. Upward mobility, job security? Forget it. Benefits? Maybe, maybe not, and highly variable when and where available.

Those are not circumstances that inspire large numbers of young people to strive and excel. Some do anyway, and good for them. Many others do the best they can going with the flow.

You can condemn them en masse as lazy and immature. Some no doubt are, but I think those are exceptions and would've been that way in any era. When people have opportunities, see interesting, challenging and rewarding pathways ahead of them, most will make good use of those opportunities and pathways. Today's young people are no different.

S.W. Anderson said...

T. Paine wrote: "I guess the good news for these other 'men-children' is that they evidently are still qualified under today’s standards to win a Nobel Prize or perhaps even grow up to be President of the United States one day."

It's a shame you can't get through a conversation without a cheap-shot dig like that. Especially since it's embarrassingly at odds with the facts.

Barack Obama grew up in modest circumstances, largely supported and raised by an aunt who worked hard to provide for him and for herself. She also worked hard to raise her nephew with a good work ethic and strong personal standards and values. He graduated high school. He went on to earn a degree from Columbia University, then got accepted to Harvard Law School. Just getting into Harvard Law is a major life achievement. Obama worked hard and excelled there. He became editor of the Law Review, another exceptional achievement.

Obama met and married Michelle. A little while ago, in her excellent convention speech. Michelle Obama described how they started out: "So young, so in love, and so in debt . . . from student loans," which were higher than their mortgage debts.

Michelle, too, came from a modest, middle-class circumstances. Her dad worked at a municipal water plant.

So, they started their professional careers, worked hard, paid off their loans, had children and are raising them to be fine young ladies.

In short, the Obamas are the absolute epitome of an American success story. They were great students, responsible young adults and hard workers. They didn't talk about good values, they lived them, and continue to do so. They never asked anyone to support them as adults, never laid around the house making excuses.

Obama came to be president the old-fashioned way. No voter suppression. No voting machine manufacturer promising to see to it he would win. No campaign year of more than 500 documented lies. He campaigned better than the competition, put forth a better message, projected the kind of spirit and vision most voters wanted, and he won.

As for his being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, that was not his doing. Your gripe is with the the Norwegian Nobel Committee, which is elected by Norway's parliament. Are you so uninformed or misinformed that you don't know that? Or do you actually think those devious Norwegians are somehow out to undermine American youth by giving what you consider an undeserved honor to an American president, and Obama put them up to it?

Paine, you should be embarrassed at how wildly uncalled for and mean spirited your statement I quoted is. Even if you disagree with Obama's politics and approach, you should be able to appreciate and even admire his accomplishments and his decency as a human being. That you evidently cannot tells me nothing about Obama, and more than I wanted to know about you and how petty and biase you can be.

T. Paine said...

Paine: I would characterize your hillbilly friend as definitely not a man then.

Myste: Though I haven't checked, I am pretty sure he is a man. If he is not, he needs some serious estrogen injections.

Paine rebuttal: Really? I think you know to what I am referring here, sir.



Myste: Love your inferior neighbor, should they neighbor be a man, is the message, I believe. Treatment of people as equals and love of someone are two separate subjects, a fact to which my dog will attest if you need confirmation.

Paine: My aren’t we jaded. I am pretty certain that “love your neighbor thing” applies to ALL people, even though being humans, we don’t always do a very good job of that.



Myste: The Christian God thinks women should be subject to their male masters if I understand Genesis and 1 Timothy 2:12, and some other places I don’t feel like looking up. Women are respected as slaves at times, possessions, other times, but not as human beings with equal rights.

Paine: 1 Timothy 2:12 “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man.” If you look at the context of this verse, I believe this is in respect to the rabbinical traditions that only men were Jewish priests. There were no rabbis ( or priestesses) that were women.

There are many wonderful passages that describe how a man is supposed to love and respect his wife though. Take for instance Ephesians 5:28-29, “So (also) husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one hates his own flesh but rather nourishes and cherishes it, even as Christ does the church”. See also Matthew 19:5, Proverbs 18:22, 1 Corinthians 7: 3-4 and so on. Yes, there were cultural differences between us today and the Jewish people 2000 years ago. That said, women are indeed supposed to be loved and cherished, just like all of God’s children.

T. Paine said...

Anderson, I find your analysis of history to be fairly accurate regarding young men and jobs. That said, you decry the lack of availability of opportunities and jobs for these young men today. I concur that this is partially so, but it is largely due to our national economic conditions currently. I suspect that the boys of which I am speaking would not be very interested in availing themselves of a job or opportunity, even if one was available to them, unfortunately. I inclined to think this way from personal anecdotal evidence.

I am an engineer for a large wireless phone carrier. I work closely with our sales management in order to address their and ultimately our customers’ needs. Nearly all of the sales personnel in our stores are comprised of young people. They are paid $12 to $15 per hour starting wages with very good medical, dental, and 401K benefits. There is great upward mobility for those that are worthy. The amazing thing is that the turnover for these kids, most of which are high school graduates or perhaps associate degree holders, is exceptionally high. The amazing thing is that they don’t understand why they get fired when they habitually show up late, or call in sick repeatedly on Mondays and Fridays, or are negligent or rude to customers. I told my youngest daughter that if she shows up to work on time and works continuously during her whole shift, she will be better right there than 90% of the staff already. Having a great attitude and sincerely trying to assist customers would put one on a quick path to being a store supervisor or manager. Most of the punk kids don’t want to have to work that hard and think they are entitled to even better pay etc. despite their poor performance. That is unacceptable to our customers and to any businessman. Even in this desperate economy, there are opportunities available to someone with perseverance and a good work ethic. It is those qualities that are often lacking today in the boys of which I am speaking.

Next, regarding your chagrin at my “cheap-shot” at Obama, I will absolutely stand by my statement and the facts. Obama was a pampered man-child for all of his adult life. By his own admission he wasn’t a serious student in high school, and yet somehow managed to get into Occidental and then Columbia anyway. How does this happen for a bright but underachieving young man who’s biggest desire was to get stoned with his choom gang buddies? He won’t release any of his college records to this day. The former libertarian VP candidate also went to Columbia the same exact years that Obama was there and they shared the same pre-law and poly science majors. He not only NEVER saw Obama in all of his years there but never found anyone else that knew of him either. The Wall Street Journal reported that a survey of 400 Columbia students at that time and couldn’t find anyone that even knew of him. http://www.savingcommonsense.blogspot.com/2012/08/a-taxing-and-de-grading-issue.html How does someone like that get into Harvard accordingly? Where are the papers he wrote? His thesis? I submit to you that he was coddled and given affirmative action billets that his work and work ethic did not warrant. He did not earn that position. To use his phrase, “he didn’t build that!”

T. Paine said...

Moving on, he had a decidedly unimpressive career in the Illinois legislature where a huge percentage of his votes were either not tendered or were counted as “present”. His career in the U.S. Senate was similarly undistinguished, unless one accounts for the fact that he was rated as the most liberal senator during his two year stint there. Please tell me how a man who wrote no significant legislation and with an unremarkable political career can be propelled to the White House only two years out of the Illinois legislature? At the risk of being accused of racism once again, I would submit to you that a white man with the same work history would never have been elevated to such levels. Indeed, Obama was elected by our “racist” country precisely because he was black. Even I thought it was a great thing that our nation had elected a person of color to the presidency, even though I knew his policies and agenda would be horribly detrimental to our nation… as has been born out accordingly.

As for Michelle, she is a vile person. How one could be first lady despite never being proud of her country in her entire life until her undeserving husband came to power is astonishing to me. She comports herself as empress with an unprecedented number of staff and vacations. She has no respect for our flag, our nation, and its founding ideals.

You are correct that the Obama’s are beneficiaries of the American dream, with the difference being that neither one of them seemingly got there strictly by their own merits.

As for the Nobel Prize, I am well aware of the laughing stock that has become. Obama simply followed a long line of undeserving recipients such as the terrorist Yasser Arafat and the mendacious Al Gore for his largely debunked global warming “documentary”. I don’t blame Obama for winning the prize but simply pointed it out as another sign of him being coddled and awarded something for which he had not legitimately done anything to earn. Indeed, the nomination of Obama for the prize would have to have been made almost as soon as he entered office. What had he done deserving of such a once-meaningful prize at that point?

Further, any president that lies on such basic Constitutional rights that he proposes to take away from me is not deserving of my admiration or respect, even though I will respect the office that he holds hopefully for only a few more months. Your hypocrisy in criticizing me for my pointing out the truth about Obama is amazing. This is especially so considering some of things that you have said about Romney, who even though I don’t particularly care for, is by nearly all objective accounts a good and decent man. He has worked tirelessly for his church and charities and given away millions of his own money, including his entire inheritance from his father. The worst dirt that the left can come up with on Romney that is actually true is regarding his dog being on the top of the car. At least he didn’t eat it though. You may want to remove the beam in your own eye first. Your arrogance is truly epic, sir.

John Myste said...

Paine: My aren’t we jaded. I am pretty certain that “love your neighbor thing” applies to ALL people, even though being humans, we don’t always do a very good job of that.

To love, does not mean to respect has something who has as many rights as you have. I love my inferior dog.

There are many wonderful passages that describe how a man is supposed to love and respect his wife though. Take for instance Ephesians 5:28-29, “So (also) husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one hates his own flesh but rather nourishes and cherishes it, even as Christ does the church”. See also Matthew 19:5, Proverbs 18:22, 1 Corinthians 7: 3-4 and so on. Yes, there were cultural differences between us today and the Jewish people 2000 years ago. That said, women are indeed supposed to be loved and cherished, just like all of God’s children.

I never implied that you are not supposed to love and cherish your possessions, women included. I implied that they are not respected as having equal rights.


John Myste said...

And I also said that the clothes people wear and their metrosexuality has nothing to do with respecting women and that there is no correlation that would support such a thesis.

S.W. Anderson said...
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S.W. Anderson said...

Paine, it sounds as though you work for a good business, albeit one that needs to be a little more careful about the people it hires to work in sales.

I've been impressed in recent years with how courteous and helpful most young people who serve me in stores and restaurants have been. There was a period in 1970's and 1980's when many were surly and of as little help as they could be. I began seeing a change in the '90's and ever since. Same thing with kids who come to the door on Halloween, BTW.

Regarding Obama, there's an old saying, "You are what you eat." Politically, that translates to you are what information you consume.

How well I remember the right-wing memes about Bill Clinton. He had state troopers bring women of easy virtue to the Arkansas governor's mansion for trysts when Hillary wasn't around, doncha know. Except that when the truth came out, two troopers admitted they had been paid by a GOP operative with deep pockets to lie about that.

Then there was the Whitewater "scandal" that Ken Starr squandered $850 million of taxpayers' money investigating for five years, only to come up with not a single credible charge of any kind.

Then there was Vince Foster, who supposedly had an affair with Hillary, so Bill arranged for him to be killed so as to look like a suicide. Turns out that was a lie, too.

And how about those Swift Boat liars? And how about the characters who claimed former Sen. Max Cleland of Georgia lost two legs and an arm fooling around with a grenade when he was drunk? The truth was that after getting off a helicotper on a hilltop with two other soldiers, he saw a grenade lying on the ground unsecured. He went to pick it up as the chopper was lifting off. It had a straight pin, and went off in his hand. One of the troops who had gotten off the chopper with him had a bunch of grenades with straight pins on him, and after Cleland was injured, he admitted the grenade had fallen off his flak jacket, and felt terrible. Most troops bent the pins on those grenades to keep that kind of thing from happening. One failed to do that, and at age 25, Cleland, in the line of duty in Vietnam, lost two legs and an arm. What Republican liars did to him and his good name to get a lying sack of you know what, Saxbe Chambliss, into the Senate, is one of the vilest, rottenest things I've ever seen in my life. But it was right in line with what some others did to John Kerry.

You'll have to excuse me if I find your tales about Obama being a phantom student who didn't do his work and earn his degrees impossible to believe. Neither Columbia nor Harvard operate that way. They don't have to. They have excellent reputations to protect, and they know being party to any such nonsense could deeply tarnish their good reputations.

No, what's really going on is that the right wing's jackal-pack of dirty tricks operatives have lucrative jobs to do, and their work is never done. Certainly not as long as there are gullible people out there who want to believe the lies they manufacture.

The BS you believe about Obama is of a piece and just as believable as that lie Bush and Rove's dirty-tricks operatives spread about John McCain's adopted daughter in the South Carolina GOP primary in 2000. The rumor they spread was that the little girl, whom McCain loves deeply, was the product of an affair McCain had with a black woman. The truth was that was from Bangladesh, and in no way illegitimate.

That's how the people you support do and say anything, no matter how lowdown, dirty and dishonest, to hurt what they deem enemies, and to win.

I'm sure you'll blow all that off and believe what you want to believe. Not because it's true or even plausible. You'll go on believing it because it fits your biases and because it's what you want to believe. That's not good for you, for our country or for what our children and grandchildren will have to live with, Paine. I wish you'd think about it.

T. Paine said...

Myste: To love, does not mean to respect has something who has as many rights as you have. I love my inferior dog.

Paine: Perhaps I have a more biblical definition of the word “love”. To my limited mind, love is wanting the very best for my beloved. Since my beloved is human, that would necessarily and absolutely also mean that I would insist that my beloved would enjoy all of the rights, privileges, and customs that should be afforded to any and every human being.



Myste: I never implied that you are not supposed to love and cherish your possessions, women included. I implied that they are not respected as having equal rights.

Paine: See my previous comment. By the way, loving one’s possessions in the context of what I just defined as love could be construed as a type of idolatry.



Myste: And I also said that the clothes people wear and their metrosexuality has nothing to do with respecting women and that there is no correlation that would support such a thesis.

Paine: And I replied in a previous comment to a similar statement you made, thusly “Regardless of one’s sense of style or how he portrays himself as a man outwardly, what is really the telling aspect of whether he is truly a man is whether or not he treats others fairly and respectfully, especially women, and further how he comports himself as to his own responsibilities. It is that aspect that will really tell the character of a real man. The fact that while I knew this, but did not acknowledge this in my original post is indeed a shortcoming on my behalf. For that, I thank you for setting me straight, John.. While I might not appreciate what I consider to be feminine in some of the young men today, that in and of itself is not what characterizes them as real men… nor should it, if I put my own prejudices aside. On this issue, you have schooled me, Mr. Myste and I humbly admit that you are right, and I was wrong. (Even though deep inside and even in actual practice, I try to give a person the benefit of the doubt regardless of his appearance, until he proves himself via his actions.)”

Do you recall my agreement and my admission of being wrong in stating otherwise now, my friend? On that particular point, you are right and I was wrong. If that offended you with my previous statements to the contrary, than I sincerely apologize.

T. Paine said...

Anderson: Paine, it sounds as though you work for a good business, albeit one that needs to be a little more careful about the people it hires to work in sales.

Paine: You are correct in both regards. My company is a good one, but it can do better with some of the people it hires. The screening process needs to be more in depth and the interviews a little more stringent for some of the sales personnel.


Anderson: I've been impressed in recent years with how courteous and helpful most young people who serve me in stores and restaurants have been. There was a period in 1970's and 1980's when many were surly and of as little help as they could be. I began seeing a change in the '90's and ever since. Same thing with kids who come to the door on Halloween, BTW.

Paine: Interesting. Any idea as to why the change in the 90’s that you were seeing?


Paine: As for the GOP dirty tricks, I have no tolerance for fabricated stories and lies created to smear a political opponent regardless of which side is guilty. I acknowledge that some of the things you mentioned are indeed as you portrayed them. That said, Bill and Hillary were hardly as pure as the wind driven snow. Bill Clinton was successfully impeached, even if he wasn’t removed from office, for his perjury, suborning perjury, and hiding subpoenaed evidence. Yes, I think the whole Monica thing was a witch hunt, even though Bill’s action were despicable and demeaning of his office. That said, it is the cover-up that gets ya every time. Clinton was found in contempt by Judge Susan Webber Wright for his perjury and was fined $90K and disbarred in the state of Arkansas accordingly.

As for Hillary and the Whitewater scandal, do you recall that a White House staff member accidentally found the long-missing and subpoenaed Rose Law Firm billing records that Hillary had “no idea about” in the residence area of the White House? If you will recall, the sitting Arkansas governor, Jim Guy Tucker, was convicted of fraud and removed from office in the Whitewater case too.


I admittedly am not familiar with the Max Cleland story and won’t offer an opinion accordingly. As for John Kerry, there is credible testimony to back his story, so I concur that what the swift boat vets said was wrong. That said, I was thoroughly disgusted by Kerry’s testimony to congress comparing the U.S. military to Genghis Kahn and guilty of killing women and children intentionally.

All of that said, you need to be as objective as possible yourself, Mr. Anderson. Admit when your political allies do wrong too. If you read my article, Mr. Root makes a very compelling argument against Obama and his college records. Further, the Wall Street Journal’s report on the investigation of a random 400 students that were attending Columbia at the time, yet never saw or heard of Obama, is pretty damning. I don’t know if the allegations of Obama not attending classes etc are true, but the fact that this evidence is raised sure makes me wonder as to why he won’t share his college records accordingly.

T. Paine said...

It is not my intention to give a tit for tat replay, but you must admit if you are truly honest that the Democrats are just as guilty of lies and smears. That in no way removes the responsibility of the GOP to behave morally, but let’s just say that they both are equally guilty.

We can start with the Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid making totally unsubstantiated claims that Romney has not paid his taxes etc. and that is why he won’t share more than two years of returns.

Indeed, the Democrats have ideologue news anchors, aka Dan Rather, that were promulgating a hoax with faked documents to discredit George Bush in the run-up to his re-election in order to derail him. The document was proven fake by a blogger within hours of its public release, and Dan Rather was forced into retirement.

And let’s not forget the lies and smears the left told about Sarah Palin’s demanding a $100,000 wardrobe for the campaign or that her baby, Trig, was actually her daughter’s child. Yeah, there is plenty of this nonsense from both sides. Frankly, it ticks me off. We need to be addressing real issues and not following fabricated drama. If there really is a credible allegation of wrong-doing, then that is something that should be pursued. Unfortunately, that is seldom the case.

Anderson: I'm sure you'll blow all that off and believe what you want to believe. Not because it's true or even plausible. You'll go on believing it because it fits your biases and because it's what you want to believe. That's not good for you, for our country or for what our children and grandchildren will have to live with, Paine. I wish you'd think about it.

Paine: That is good advice, sir. Something that if you are honest about, you will find yourself guilty of too. I’ll tell you what; I will make a concerted effort not to jump to conclusions and to wait for credible evidence on future scandals if you will make a similar attempt. Something for both of us and frankly all Americans to think about accordingly.

John Myste said...

Mr. Paine,

You have never offended me that I know of.

Your total concession regarding all manners is appreciated and I graciously accept it in the manner in which it was offered, sir.

S.W. Anderson said...

Paine asked: Interesting. Any idea as to why the change in the 90’s that you were seeing?

I have a theory about that change in young people, but admit it's only that. I think some of the young people with a bad attitude and weak work ethic in the '70's and '80's were the children of the disillusioned and disaffected young adults of the 1960's. Many of that era were disheartened by the assassinations of the Kennedy brothers and Martin Luther King. There was deep disgust, cynicism and frustration over the Vietnam War, which dragged on long, long after an overwhelming majority of Americans concluded it was unworthy of the sacrifices and cost, and unwinnable in any case. We have a democracy. What the people want is supposed to matter and form the basis of government policy. But that war took on a life of its own. It divided society, driving a wedge of suspicion and resentment between good civilians and good military people, between those over 30 and those who were younger. There was also negative reaction to what many considered materialism run amok in our society. Finally, the women's rights movement brought out the idealism in some, but just caused others to go around with a chip on their shoulder. I think all those things resulted in a sour, cynical, attitude and lack of trust that led to surliness in people of all ages, but was especially evident in younger people.

I think the next generation of young adults saw that sour attitude in kids coming up, felt it and reacted to it. They decided their children would do better, and so they took steps in raising them to make that happen.

S.W. Anderson said...

Paine: "Bill and Hillary were hardly as pure as the wind driven snow. . ."

I have never claimed Bill Clinton was faultless. I didn't bring up the Lewinsky matter because I was writing about a nasty GOP habit of smear campaigns and character assassination based on lies against those they deem political enemies. I didn't bring up the Lewinsky brouhaha because Bill Clinton clearly did wrong, letting everyone down.

--

I don't recall about Rose Law firm bills being lost and fail to see what significance wrongdoing by another Arkansas governor has to do with the Clintons. After five long years of desperately searching for anything he could get on the Clintons, with a budget that ran to $850 million, I take the fact Ken Starr failed to come up with anything actionable as gilt-edged proof of innocence.

Hell, as incompetent as Alberto Gonzales was, had be been of a mind to, even he could've come up with enough on George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in two months time, at a cost of two box tops and 25 cents in coin, to put both of them away for life.


Paine wrote: "I was thoroughly disgusted by Kerry’s testimony to congress comparing the U.S. military to Genghis Kahn and guilty of killing women and children intentionally."

Paine, Afghanistan broke the Red Army in the 1980's. I don't know if you know the Red Army's history, or the significance of that, but I will tell you it was a key element in the dissolution of the Soviet Union. After years of fighting there, Soviet generals went back to Moscow and did a very brave thing: they told the country's leaders the troops' morale was broken, discipline was breaking down, and that the war was unwinnable. Soviet leaders already knew the war was bleeding the USSR white, and that the USSR's civilian population was disillusioned with it and growing bitter over it. So, the troops were ordered to withdraw. That's what a long, costly, no-win war can do.

John Kerry was a young man then, and like many who served in Vietnam was disgusted and disilusioned over the losses and costs of a war that couldn't be won and with leaders who refused put and end to it, not wanting to be the first to preside over a "defeat." I saw his testimony before that Senate committee, and respected him for it. It was truth that needed to be told.

You must be unaware of an incident in the Korean war in which some of our troops needlessly killed a bunch of terrified Korean civilians who had huddled together under a bridge when a battle was being fought in their town. They had no weapons and made no aggressive move against those troops, who were above them on a hillside. The troops just massacred them, men, women, old people, children.

You surely do know about the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

People in and out of the military must know about those incidents. War is brutal and ugly, and causes people to do terrible things they would never otherwise do. That seems to be especially true of protracted no-win wars. Sweeping those incidents under the rug will only invite more of them, and will serve to make people think of war as a more noble and benign undertaking than it really is. That could serve to make people nonchalant about getting into another no-win war. That would be the worst thing that could happen.

Kerry did not sully the good name of the overwhelming majority of our military people who conducted themselves decently in the most difficult circumstances. He told the discomfiting but necessary truth that in war some men break down and do uncivilized things. The senators and public needed to hear that and to know what our prolonged misadventure in Southeast Asia was doing to some of our people.

S.W. Anderson said...

Re: Obama's college attendance. Columbia University has about 6,000 students, 4,500 of them at Columbia College. It's a very big, busy institution in a very big, busy city. I haven't been to Columbia, but I've been to New York City, including Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens, a number of times. The fact 400 students couldn't recall one particular student doesn't surprise me. Many who attend Columbia live at home in or near the city, have jobs to go to, and so don't carry on a campus social life the way students at many universities do.

T. Paine said...

Your theory as to the surliness of the kids in the 70’s and 80’s sounds plausible and logical. As I don’t have a better one, I must agree with your analysis.

As for the Clintons and Whitewater, I know that Starr was unable to get anything substantial to prosecute them with, largely because the McDougals refused to provide testimony and James McDougal ended up passing away. I suspect there was malfeasance there, but it was indeed a political witch hunt. The whole Monica thing was a disgusting mess too. Unfortunately, the biggest and truly impeachable crimes Bill committed weren’t seriously investigated. His soliciting and accepting foreign campaign contributions was more disturbing.

What was truly endangering of our nation’s security was his shifting of approvals and oversight of “dual use technologies” being sold to nations such as China from the State and DOD to the Commerce Department. The fact that his buddy with Loral Space was a big campaign contributor and was consequently able to provide assistance to China after this move was unforgivable. Before then China was unable to get a satellite into orbit. It was afterwards, via Clinton’s friend, that they were able to make big leaps forward and thus diminish our military advantage accordingly. It allowed China’s nuclear arsenal, which largely targeted the U.S., to become a much greater danger. Of course, with the sycophantic liberal media, word of this was scarce.

Anderson: Hell, as incompetent as Alberto Gonzales was, had be been of a mind to, even he could've come up with enough on George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in two months time, at a cost of two box tops and 25 cents in coin, to put both of them away for life.

Paine: I don’t even want to hear a word about incompetence when it comes to AG’s. Eric Holder is king of incompetence, as well as corrupt, perjurous, and held in contempt of congress for his lying under oath accordingly. If he served under a Republican, the media would be demanding his resignation at least and jail time at worst. Obama still has confidence in this duplicitous man though.

As for John Kerry and his testimony to congress, I do know and understand that atrocities were committed. That was certainly not the norm as it was portrayed. Kerry’s motivations seemed to be more personal and political rather than simply trying to get the truth out.

As for the Viet Nam war, we lost that war because several presidents, Secretary McNamara, General Westmoreland and others really didn’t have the political will, and perhaps political capital, to actually fight that war except in half measures. If we were going to hamstring ourselves and not put out full efforts to win, we should never have gotten involved in the beginning. That goes for all wars when we put our men and women’s lives in jeopardy, by the way.

As for President Obama, I know his politics are obviously more in line with your own, but your willingness to overlook his transgressions while being so very quick to jump on those of conservatives seems to speak of a double standard, sir. And yes, I know that I am also guilty of this; however, the difference is that I am aware of it and when not in a fit of patriotic passion and concern for our country, I can and do acknowledge the shortcomings of my political fellow travelers, my friend.

S.W. Anderson said...

I don't think Holder is crooked, I do think he's an underperformer.

I agree on Clinton's decision about dual use technology and allowing things to be reverse-engineered in China. That fattened profits for some U.S. and multinational corporations at a great cost to our economy and compromising of our national security.

I didn't get out of Kerry's testimony that was condemning all American troops as brutal and guilty of war crimes. What you are probably referring to are the bombing and defoliation campaigns, and widespread use of land mines. All of those did horrendous collateral damage to innocent civilians.

The Vietnam War became unwinnable the moment our leaders decided against invading and conquering the north, because to do so would've meant war with China and maybe the USSR as well. They should've known better before escalating the war there, that the S. Vietnam government was corrupt and not something the people would fight to defend, and that the north would be off limits because China wouldn't stand for a U.S. client state directly on its border. They should've known because that was the exact same situation we faced in our no-win war in Korea.

And, BTW, the situation is much the same in Afghanistan, only the problem is Pakistan, not China.

S.W. Anderson said...

Paine, while looking for something else I came across a 2005 post of mine that I think you'll find interesting. I hope so, anyway.

T. Paine said...

Anderson, that was indeed very interesting. I applaud Senator Kerry for sponsoring those two pieces of excellent legislation. Admittedly it raises his esteem in my eyes accordingly. Thanks for sharing that post, sir.