Thursday, February 03, 2005

A Brief Response to the "Drek Challenge"

by Tom Bozzo

How do you respond to men who purportedly live in a world "in which women are dramatically [privileged] over men?" Drek invites sociologist-bloggers — and, very inclusively I have to say, non-sociologist bloggers too — to take a look at "masculist" ("masculinist"?) claims and harrow them in the purgatorial fires of pure data. (A commenter there asked, "homework?!")

Drek suggested among potential subjects the philosophy page of the National Coalition of Free Men, which had me stumped for some time with the virtually untestable unfalsifiable nature of some of its objectives concerns.

Those range from a relatively laudable desire to "[free men f]rom feelings which inhibit them from developing a closer more emotional relationship with their children," to the utterly confusing call for freedom "[f]rom national conscription practices which play on their traditional role as protector of the family and society." That last one is easy: they haven't re-instituted the draft (yet).

What of the group's true aims? Consider "[free men f]rom conflict between their polygamous sexual conditioning as youths, and society's expectation that they will overcome that conditioning after marriage." Not generally true, according to an only-at-Chicago* study that found:
...that new sexual markets operate differently for men and women and are defined according to racial group, neighborhood and sexual orientation.
(Addendum: a blunt observation from Tyler Cowen and a link to a recent economics paper is at Marginal Revolution.)


Then there's "[free men f]rom preoccupation with sexual technique and from imperatives to concentrate on satisfying their partners sexually, seemingly at the expense of their own sexual pleasure." The rich get richer?

I am frankly shocked that Drek couldn't get one of the 'Sconnies to tee this one up, but this one is readily dispatched, too. Here, from a "naughty" moment at The Other Side of the Ocean, is an observation that says all that need be said regarding the notion that men actually have any problem at all in achieving their own sexual pleasure:
Is it reasonable to expect that a man can perform while irradiated, undergoing a scan, in a room full of neuroscientists, and in an exact 50 second window of time? The article [link substantially safe for work] reports that 8 out of 11 men were able to oblige, all thanks to the women who were at their… side (they had multiple practice sessions beforehand).


* Lame joke about markets omitted.
Comments:
".....the virtually untestable nature of some of its objectives."

You mean they're not deductively rigorous? Shocking.
 
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
 
Darn blogger ate part of the comment!

I realize that I really meant "unfalsifiable" (edits made). Beyond that, well, certain sound and/or visual effects that might have accompanied that astonishing observation IRL don't really translate into the blog medium
 
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