Bad Logic Uses “Fire” on Straw Man…It’s Super-Effective!

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For some reason or another in the past few months I began reading RoK again (I don’t remember why). While there are a few good authors there (Kyle and Runsonmagic, for example), the rest I usually skip past after reading the first sentence/paragraph or so. Those in the “skips” are usually, in my opinion, crap.

I’m looking for grain, not chaff.

Usually, I approach each article with an open mind before deciding. However, when I read the latest piece from RoK’s supposed “Chief Investigative Journalist” Douglas, I was taken aback (emphasis mine):

I was blasting some paper at the range one day, to practice to keep my pimp hand strong, when a man struck up a conversation with me. Usually the discussions at the pistol range coalesce around politics and what weapons to buy. Well into this gentleman’s rant about the Second Amendment, current denizens of Washington DC and policies of ”blue” states, I noticed something. He was shooting a Kimber 45 caliber pistol. I interrupted his tirade and asked him that if he does not support the various policies of the states of New Jersey and New York, why did he purchase a product from those states. He stood there for a minute and contemplated the realization that his beliefs were inconsistent with his actions.

Nice straw man you built up and knocked over, Douglas.

Maybe it’s because I’m just not as enlightened because I have a STEM degree, but I know faulty logic when I see it.

Basically, his argument is that you shouldn’t buy a product from companies you support because they’re headquartered in a State you hate. Or, with this specific example, you should bankrupt Kimber because Cuomo is a gun-grabbing idiot Liberal (h/t Thirty Days to X).

Shall we all spite our faces by cutting off our noses now?

———–

I’m going to go out on a limb and flat-out say he invented this whole scenario based on a few things:

First, with every indoor and outdoor range that I’ve been to I have never, ever, seen anyone have a heated conversation like this while shooting due to the ear protection you’re required to wear to stop hearing damage from the loud reports of the rifles and pistols (that whole “safety” thing). Also you’re there to shoot your gun, not chew the fat with the guy in the next lane. Now if you’re waiting for a lane because it’s busy, different story, but I’ve never observed that occurring either.

Second, the “guy” he describes talking to him sounds like a typical leftist caricature of a Tea Party supporter or Conservative (for comparison and reference, this author also has recently written “The Republican Party Needs to Go Away” Parts One and Two).

Third, in the real world a normal person would say “Um, that doesn’t make any sense, can you explain that better?” and not be “completely shut down” by an obviously dubious and weak argument.

Fourth, if I saw that “guy’s” gun I would first think “1911” before thinking “Kimber” like an average person who actually has some gun knowledge.

Fifth, why not say Kimber 1911? He already states he shoot guns, so why the odd description, as all 1911s are chambered for .45 ACP? Calling it a “Kimber 45 caliber pistol” is just about as broad as you can be (since they also make rifles too). It would be like me describing my M1903 rifle as a “Springfield 30 caliber rifle” or my pistols as “Sig Sauer 9mm pistol” and “Walther 22 pistol”

Hell, even a few of the commentors thought this position didn’t make any sense!

ROK

I stand by my original position that RoK has jumped the shark, and the quality of the writing there will only get worse and more clickbaity as time passes. I’m not a Super-Red Pill Alpha Male™ though, so who the hell am I to criticize, right?

La Biblioteca di Beppo: Southern Victory Series by Harry Turtledove

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Recently, I finished up the last book in Harry Turtledove’s Southern Victory/Timeline-191 series.  While they were fascinating reads initially, I put down the later books more and more to read other stuff.

I enjoy well written alternate history.  Turtledove’s earlier works, the Alternate History/Sci-Fi novel “Guns of the South” and the two novels covering the Japanese occupation of Hawaii following the Pearl Harbor attack (“Days of Infamy” and “End of the Beginning“), convinced me that this relatively long series was worth adding to my “to read” list.

What I did like was the alternative world that Turtledove built, because you could imagine that this would’ve happened if the South won the Civil War (“War of Succession” in the books).  He also illustrates the difference of this world by using different words for objects. For example, “wireless” instead of “radio,” “Y-range” instead of “Radar,” “Barrel” instead of “Tank,” and “superbomb” instead of “atom bomb.”

Even though the world he built was vivid and full of characters with different personalities, I did have some complaints the more I read into the series.

First, It was galling to read over and over again about how the Northern tobacco was terrible in comparison to the South’s.  It seemed as though Turtledove needed to keep mentioning this just to boost his word-count (the biggest complaint on Amazon’s reviews actually).  Second, some of the secondary characters were in the story much longer than necessary (the coffeehouse owner who was a former whore and hated men because of it, and the well-educated black butler are examples).  Turtledove seemed to realize this in the midst of writing and remedied this problem by abruptly killing the character off.  Third, he tried really hard to create in the CSA a Nazi Party analog, the rise of a Hitler-like character, and the set up for the later genocide of “undesirables.”  However, the effort fell flat.  No matter what this Party did in his books, the real world Nazis did things much more brutally and efficiently.  I’ve read enough about Nazi Germany to know this for a fact.  Finally, it felt as though he rushed out the later books just to finish up and get the arc over with, as the quality of the writing wasn’t up to par with his earlier books.

Overall, I did enjoy the books.  So if you’re interested in alternative history, this series is worth checking out.

A full review of each book (or series) would give away much of the story and plot, so I list a main point or two from each of the books.

How Few Remain

    • Twenty years after the South defeated the North, war breaks out once again due to the CSA purchasing some territory from Mexico

The Great War (American Front, Walk in Hell, Breakthroughs)

    • Covers what happens on the American continent after the assassination of the Archduke; where the USA and the CSA are drawn into fighting each other due to their respective alliances to Germany and France/Britain
    • Also, graphically details the horrors of trench warfare happening in America

American Empire (Blood and Iron, The Center Cannot Hold, The Victorious Opposition)

    • These novels correspond to the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression years

Settling Accounts (Return Engagement, Drive to the East, The Grapple, In at the Death)

    • These final four, and the longest of the bunch, novels cover the lead up to the second World War, the actual fighting, and its conclusion following the deployment of nuclear bombs

Awareness and Observation

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After I finished washing a batch of dirty dishes, I walked out to the front part of the local fast food joint I worked at.  On the notices board, I saw a five dollar bill taped to a piece of paper.

Curiously, I moved in closer.  The paper had a note that read “be careful of counterfeits in the future!”  Puzzled, I examined the dollar for a moment, then took the sign down.

Walking into the manager’s office, I got out my wallet and gave her five dollars.

Manager (puzzled):  “Why do you want that fake?”

Beppo:  “It’s not a fake, it’s just from the 50’s and is different from what you’re used to.”

———–

Right after the newly remodeled Men’s room was opened at work, I noticed that you couldn’t tell which stall was occupied.  After a few occasions of walking down the line pushing on doors and feeling like an idiot, something had to be more efficient.

Looking into the mirror one afternoon while washing my hands, I could see feet in the occupied stalls.  A simple glance into the mirror would show the open stalls.

Almost two years later, there are still those that go down the line trial-and-error fashion.

———–

I’m out with my friends at a Buffalo gin mill, we’re playing darts.

Giacomo (nods to nearby booth):  “Hey, did you see that girl?  She’s cute.”

Beppo (glances over, then throws dart, misses triples):  “Yeah I did.  She’s here with her boyfriend though.”

Giacomo: “How do you…”

As if on cue, we see the girl get up and go kiss a guy at a nearby table, then put her head on his shoulder.

Giacomo:  “Wait, how did you know that?”

Beppo:  “I saw her come in with him awhile ago.  They were holding hands.”

———–

The point of the above anecdotes is to do something that many nowadays have forgotten:  observe before acting.

A simple pause before doing something can save you trouble in the future.  As Augustus once said, “Make haste slowly.”

Manosphere Beefs

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If you’ve been following me on Twitter the past few months, you’ve probably seen the hashtag #manospherebeefs a lot.

The idea behind this tag (originally coined by Tyler Vin) is to take the most outlandish absolutist statements or “out there” point-of-views from within the Manosphere and then satirize/parody/lampoon them.  Given the rich amount of source material currently available, it’s not that difficult.  The BS drama this past weekend (LaidNYC referred to it as “menstruating“), for example, gave a lot of material to work with.

Satire is difficult to do because if done wrong it becomes trolling or mean-spirited attacking.  So there’s a fine line that has to be walked in order to make it work properly.  Being that many guys in the Sphere are pretty intelligent, they pulled it off extremely well.

However a problem arose with some topics.  Well before taking the topic to its logical conclusion to engage the satire, it already goes beyond parody and then into the realm of the absurd.

Here are a few examples (links to originals in names):

Ace:  “Women are stupid for following their emotions.  So follow your dick everywhere, always.” #manospherebeefs

Beppo:  “Anyone online who says they’re an Alpha is just a keyboard-jockey.  Excluding myself of course, since I really am one.” #manospherebeefs

Tyler:  “If you treat Valentines Day any differently than any other day of the year, in any respect, you’re a faggot.” #manospherebeefs

Beppo:  “You need to do exactly what I do and take everything I say as gospel truth in order to become a freethinking man.” #manospherebeefs

Lucky:  @Tyler_Vin Looking at naked chicks you’re not banging is beta.  Do you even approach? #manospherebeefs

Beppo:  “You should sacrifice your job, health, family and meaningful relationships for what’s most important:  having a soft harem” #manospherebeefs

Tyler:  “Hand juicing is my intellectual property now.  If you so much as crush a grape without paying me, I will fight you.” #manospherebeefs

———–

At this point some of you might be thinking:  “That sounds like beta ankle-biting, brah.  Are you some kinda pussy faggot loser?

(That would be another great example of #manospherebeefs, by the way.  And the answer is, no it isn’t and no I’m not.)

The underlying idea is not to attack or troll (notice there’s no specifically named persons or sites), but to highlight the absurdity in the direction the Manophere is currently moving and then pointing it out to others.  Such that, a man is forced to acknowledge that tiny ignored kernel of doubt in the back of his mind and think, “Wait a second, someone actually said something like that?  That’s fucked up.  I need to reevaluate and take stock of which views conflict with my personal ethics.”

Because heaven forbid you have a thought of your own, instead of adopting someone else’s without question in order to fit in with the crowd!

I’ve talked about it before, but I’ll list some supposedly “required stances” current in the Manosphere that cause me to raise my eyebrows.

  • The absolutist, black-or-white view of a world that is actually shades of gray. (eg. “All women are sluts!”, “Alphas do X, betas do Y, so do X or you’re a beta!”)
  • The convincing of an unknown number of men that any relationship deeper with a woman than a one night stand is “beta” or weak.
  • Advocating the eschewing of marriage and raising a family because the writer’s parents got divorced when he was a kid or he himself was dumped/divorced. (Yeah, I said it, deal with it.  This is the dirty little secret that many writers try to hide. Don’t believe me?  Do some digging on some of its most ardent supporters.)
  • Spending hours tearing down, ridiculing and mocking movements that exist nowhere else except on the internet. (eg. Hyper-feminism, Fat acceptance)
  • Supposedly being all for the free exchange of ideas, yet banning those that don’t conform to the site owner’s point-of-view.
  • The toxic effect that money has when injected into a “closed” population. (In my opinion, most of the actual beef is based on this and pageviews that drive it)
  • The rise of clickbait, listicles and image-heavy posts as a predominant method of “writing”.
  • A shift from actually undertaking self-improvement to finding a scapegoat for failures and doing nothing to address underlying causes or issues. (eg. Hypergamy, feminism)
  • The borderline rage and overall negativity of some (mostly this applies to commentors).

———–

My livelihood* doesn’t depend on the internet. I could close up shop tomorrow and not be worried about money.

I don’t have a readership where I could either sic on people I disagree with, demand they kiss my ring or where they’d accept anything I say as gospel.

I don’t care about online “street cred”, since much of what I write is mainly cathartic and mostly for myself.

I’m not an “expert” in what would be considered the “core” of the Manosphere (seduction, money, fitness, style etc), and by stereotypical Manosphere standards I would probably be considered a “loser” and a “failure.”

I may not have been a founder of this corner of the web, but I’ve been around long enough to be genuinely concerned about the direction we may be going.

———–

The core idea of the Manosphere is to spread information around, because the more information you have, the better conclusion you can draw after sifting through all the data.  Locking yourself away from other views because they challenge your current paradigm should be anathema to a supposed “free-thinking man.”

Besides, unless you have a pitifully weak ego and cannot handle criticism, you should be able to laugh at yourself.  That type of thing keeps you humble and makes you grow as a man.

I know I’m not the only one who thinks this.

 

*Disclosure:  I have an Amazon Affiliate account and I probably won’t ever make enough to even buy a book with the commission.  Besides, anyone can get that affiliate easily since they approve everyone.

Why I Got Rid of Tinder

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Tinder is the latest and hippest smartphone application that uses your Facebook to match you up with girls in your area. You look at pictures and swipe right (Yes) or left (No). If you and the girl both swipe right, you can then chat with them and possibly meet up. Basically, it’s “Hot or Not” with a messaging feature.

They call it a “hook up” app.

It’s really easy to set up, you just need a Facebook and a few pictures to get started.

Some guys get laid like gangbusters from it. From what I’ve seen, the girls these guys are banging probably aren’t that high of quality (read: fat or extremely slutty).

———–

On Monday, I nuked my own account. Yeah, I had a bunch of matches but for the most part there was a very low return of investment. Reactivating my Facebook just to give this a go. I figured, why not? I didn’t have anything to lose from it. My messages to my matches were normal ones about one of her pictures or something in her bio. No “sit on my face,” “let’s fuck” or other blatantly propositioning messages

The results

Of my hundred (?) matches, I had a grand total of 3 numbers (one was fake or the girl didn’t respond to my texts) and one date (girl was 20-30 lbs heavier than her pictures). Most of the girls that messaged me first turned out to be bots.

Although, one girl did message me in Italian and wanted to meet up for coffee and conversational practice. For some reason she closed her account or blocked me (wouldn’t understand why though) before I could get her number.

I had some hopes at getting a few dates out of Tinder and possibly meeting some new people at a minimum, but that got dashed fairly quickly. As some of the postings by girls to tinderfessions says anything, most of the girls on there have no actual intention of meeting up. They basically want some attention or validation that they’re attractive. I lost count at the number of girls whose bios have their instagram/twitter/snapchat/kik handles in them. There even was one for a prostitute advertising her prices with text in the pictures.

The best bet with any of these new services is to get in at the beginning when people are using it for its actual purpose. I don’t live in LA, Miami, or NYC, so I can’t comment on how well Tinder works in those larger and more anonymous cities. For Columbus though, Tinder can be useful if you want to put the effort into it.

If you still have a Facebook, give it a shot even if for a laugh.

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