May 29th, 2009

Research on happiness: so, what do women want?

Alas and alack, and woe is us. Happiness is more elusive for women than ever, according to a recent study.

Women’s reported happiness has fallen relative to men’s happiness, and it’s done so quite consistently in industrialized countries, across class and educational and regional lines. A mere thirty-five years ago women were happier than men, but now men are happier than women.

“The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness” is the title of the study involved, which can be found in its entirety here. This is the abstract:

By many objective measures the lives of women in the United States have improved over the past 35 years, yet we show that measures of subjective well-being indicate that women’s happiness has declined both absolutely and relative to men. The paradox of women’s declining relative well-being is found across various datasets, measures of subjective well-being, and is pervasive across demographic groups and industrialized countries. Relative declines in female happiness have eroded a gender gap in happiness in which women in the 1970s typically reported higher subjective well-being than did men. These declines have continued and a new gender gap is emerging — one with higher subjective well-being for men.

It is indeed a paradox, and a mystery. But mysteries invite speculation, and so I’ll climb aboard and guess. The explanation can’t be something obvious like divorce, or the tug between career and home for mothers; those things have been corrected for demographically in the research and found to be unrelated to the changes in reported happiness.

The declining happiness effect appears to be so pervasive and consistent that it’s not just some artifact of a particular test, either. The change seems real. There is one startling exception to the trend, however—black women are happier than they were before in the absolute sense, and their reported happiness has not changed relative to black men:

An important exception is that this phenomenon has not occurred similarly across racial groups. African-American women have become happier over this period in parallel with rising happiness among African-American men, implying little change in their gender happiness gap. This rise in African-American women’s happiness has occurred as part of an overall rise in the happiness of blacks, a rise that has eliminated two-thirds of the black-white happiness gap.

So this has occurred despite the fact that blacks in general are still less happy than whites, although gaining on them. Let’s put this finding aside for a moment and go on.

This is the pattern of the happiness decline in the other women:

The top lines show that in the 1970s women were more likely than men to report being “very happy”, while this differential began to evaporate in the 1980s. The bottom two lines show that in the 1970s men and women were roughly equally likely to report being “not too happy” and a gap emerges in the 1990s with women more likely than men to report unhappiness.

So some change began in the 1980s and continues to the present. All sorts of statistical analyses were performed by the researchers to tease out what it might be, and they can’t ascribe it to anything they can measure. The trend of decline in happiness for white women includes Hispanics (apparently even wise Latinas are susceptible), and was more or less equal across age groups, employment, marriage, education, and childbearing status.

This is fascinating, although I have no clue what it means:

Trends in male happiness mirror…trends in male earnings—men with a college degree or more have become happier over time, while men with a high school degree or less have become less happy over time. The patterns for women however are not similar: women of all education groups have become less happy over time with declines in happiness having been steepest among those with some college

In Europe it’s a bit different although similar: men and women have both had a rise in satisfaction, but a differential one so that the gap between them is similar to that in the US.

My leading theory is that perhaps certain other trends in our modern world—increased choice and increased pressure to do it all, the decline of the family, rising expectations for happiness and for achievement in all spheres of life, and the perception (correct or incorrect) of the world being a dangerous place—unite to cause an increased feeling of instability and “things fall apart, the center does not hold,” and that something about women’s particular emotional makeup causes these things to affect them somewhat more negatively than they do men (I guess it’s a good thing I’m not the President of Harvard; that kind of talk could get me fired).

This still wouldn’t explain the differences for black women, but I’ll attempt to tackle that in a moment.

The researchers seem to agree that my theory is a plausible, if unproven, one:

…there may be other important socio-economic forces that have made women worse off. A number of important macro trends have been documented—decreased social cohesion (Putnam 2000), increased anxiety and neuroticism (Twenge 2000), and increased household risk (Hacker 2006). While each of these trends have impacted both men and women, it is possible for even apparently gender-neutral trends to have gender-biased impacts if men and women respond differently to these forces. For example, if women are more risk averse than men, then an increase in risk may lower women’s utility relative to that of men.

Women’s affiliative needs may in general be greater, too, and in recent decades they may have had fewer opportunities to indulge in the sort of group support they used to find almost as a matter of course. I think that may matter.

Looking at my mother’s life and the things that made her happy, I’ve observed that not only was there much more social stability then, but my mother’s world involved a great deal of social interaction, both among the women themselves during the day and in the evenings in mixed social groups. The women depended on each other and had more free time and were therefore more available to each other.

My mother was also part of a group that had for the most part known each other since childhood, since few moved away. They could count on the fact that their marriages would probably last, and they perceived their kids as growing up in a stable environment with fewer risks and temptations to go wrong. In short, my mother was part of a seemingly stable group and world—despite the upheaval of the 60s, which was small relative to what has transpired since. Whatever her milieu may have lacked in excitement and change it made up for in a sense of security, community, and shared values.

But what of today’s happier black women? It’s just a guess, but I wonder whether more black women see their lives as continuing to get better, whereas women of other races may be more likely to feel that theirs have peaked and may even be in decline. And/or perhaps black women also have more group support available to them, and are part of a larger and tighter community, whereas women of other races feel more isolated.

I admit that these explanations are fairly lame, but they’re the best I can come up with at the moment. Feel free to offer your own.


101 Responses to “Research on happiness: so, what do women want?”

  1. Cap'n Rusty Says:

    Sure, I’ll raise some hackles.

    White males have become less “manly,” meaning fewer of them are the strong, silent, take-charge, have-no-fear types; they’re no longer reliable. White women are subconsciously responding to that . . “It’s hard to find a good man.”

    Black males, however, have far better prospects in life than heretofore, and are more confident about themselves. Black women have a much better chance of finding “a good man.”

    Let the flames begin . . .

  2. SteveH Says:

    Women demanded to work and men obliged with a wink. That should just about cover their present decline.

  3. Mark Says:

    Happiness is doing something that gives one satisfaction: learning, building, creating, teaching, helping, etc. Degree of difficulty is not significant; satisfaction is. So what’s missing? Kids? Goals? Gardens?

  4. Carol Schreiber Says:

    I believe I am one of the older woman, like the author’s mother who are quite happy. I also have friends who I have known since highschool, have a wonderful family and are enjoying grandchildren from age 20 to 16 mos.
    I think too many women are trying too hard, and not finding satisfaction.
    I think happiness is not something you can actively seek, and my favorite motto is:
    “Happiness is like a butterfly, chase it and it will elude you,
    Turn you attention to other things, and it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.

  5. Cappy Says:

    Hey! I’m doing my best here!

  6. dane Says:

    You gotta love it

    The “black-white happiness gap”

  7. br549 Says:

    More women in the work force, women a little less happy. More women in the work force, taking a little financial load of the husband, men a little more happy?

    It goes without saying friends are important. My closest friends are also my oldest with a couple dating back to early elementary years.

    This obviously doesn’t apply to everyone. I was in a marriage that deteriorated badly over 20 + years. I am now happier, she is now miserable. She never had to worry before, which also may have affected her outlook.

  8. Foxfier Says:

    I know when I was in the Navy I had a lot of trouble being proud of my achievements because it was always tainted with “is it because I did good, or is it because I was the only woman available?”

  9. copithorne Says:

    Do you believe self reported happiness quotients? I don’t. To me, it would just measure social conformity. People are expected to be happy. How much are people willing to identify with the expectations set out for them?

    As African Americans become more integrated, the willingness to conform to social expectations increases.

    As women become more independent, their willingness to identify with social expectations decreases.

  10. jon baker Says:

    Wow, Rush limbaugh talked about this earlier this week. Neo, are you listening to Rush? He is pompous, I know, but still he is still right about 90% of the time. I disagree with him about chickens, NAFTA and ….there was something else….

  11. Foxfier Says:

    Jon- his sense of humor, at times? ^.~

  12. expat Says:

    Women have swallowed the you-can-have-it-all Koolaid, thinking that it meant a perfect life. Naturally, they are disappointed. They thought they could avoid hard choices so they didn’t consciously make the choices and accept the consequences. You can be a foreign correspondent, living in different countries and meeting new people, or you can remain in your hometown with family and friends you’ve known your whole life. If you consciously choose, you accept the downside of your choice and you feel in control. If you don’t, then you feel that someone else is cheating you of your dream.

  13. vanderleun Says:

    We must only consult William Blake:

    What is it men in women to require?
    The lineaments of gratified desire.
    What is it women do in men require?
    The lineaments of gratified desire.

    I note that it is not necessarily the reality in play here, though it may be, but the perception of gratified desire.

    Yearning for the constant reality may well be a source of not just of unease but of malaise as well.

    The contemporary eructation of “Keepin’ it real” is composed of half BS and half despair.

  14. Artfldgr Says:

    if you know history of the womens movement and such you would understand EXACTLY whats going on and why!

    i will give a clue as to why black women are immune.. they dont read the feminist rags that the white, japanese, chinese, hispanic, and others do to the same degree. they dont watch or have as much acess to cable womens channels, and so on.

    note that this would also explain why its in industrialized countries, and not others.

    the 70s were the first generation to say screw you culture and parents… they were the first to cast off reason and the result of 10k years of refining and living. customs that have EASY explanations if your not trying to cast them in marxism or lying to disprove real disparities.

    modern feminism takes credit for things it never did. it ligitimizes itself with associations that just arent true, etc.

    women in our western countries are represented by women that HATE them and really look down on them and dont want them to have the freedom to choose what makes them happy.

    does this sound like the words of someone that really is representing what women want?

    “No woman should be authorized to stay at home and raise her children. Society should be totally different. Women should not have that choice, precisely because if there is such a choice, too many women will make that one.” — Interview with Simone de Beauvoir, “Sex, Society, and the Female Dilemma,” Saturday Review, June 14, 1975, p.18

    you see… women in the west have lost the CHOICE in their lives while being told they have more choices than before!!!!!

    i dont want this to get too long.. i am trying really hard to put something useful forth, and not sound like a crank, and really really try to be helpful here.

    the 70s women felt that they were oppressed by the roles they were playing. they were told that those roles were unatural, that their desires were not theirs, that men have tricked them, etc… that they were living in comfortable concentration camps. (that was freidan).

    so really what you actually had was a bunch of people with an agenda telling children that it was ok to do the things their elders said was bad, and wrapping that with a new world view, and the sense that they were breaking new ground every time they were inverting the old culture…

    rather than grow and find real meaning, they accepted meaning handed to them and didnt grow. they got license to act, and got a scape goat for the responsibility that was always there, and the consequences of actions.

    but they felt free. they could get drunk and stoned and get heart desease and die early just like the men. ladies home journal, and others were the mags of record. but they were beaten out by the NEW mags which first failed (because the feminist women created businesses like they say would be great.. children running around, dogs, time off for the women. it financially collapsed). so they needed money. they got in bed with big tobacco and big alcohol. they dropped unisex so that they could attract designers and fashion. a bunch of really pushy nasty women (i know them personall) assumed a place as new arbiters…

    unlike redbook, this new magazine had their ear, the men didnt pay attention, and was a conduit tiny devil always telling them contradictory things, drawing them in with fashion… creating womens crisis that they support then cash in on… etc

    anyway. it was a heady time. they were told all these improvements that would happen if they just acted differently. and htey did.. and being naughty was fun!!! but it had a VERY dark side. you lost social respect, you lost family. things got complex.

    now… the ones that would mature in 1980 (my generation), were being born in that mess and growing up in the first.

    what the ones who abandoned old culture didnt get was that they were putting the brakes on things. that the decline around them the decline of moral momentum. that they never realized that everything was existing as a card house of interdependent links…

    women entered the work force in droves completely ignorant of economics of doing it en masse. what happened was not that business expanded and everyone got salaries, business doubled its work force and were able to pay much less to everyone.

    but for women then that money was still seeming better than the drol life of a housewife, and the sex, and such and the promise of adventure always around the corner was fun. what they never realized was that it was fun becauyse of the card house that was all around them that was still sound. many of these women are the detached from reality cougers and olders who are fighting the fight and yet seem so out of touch. but a large voting block in the pocket.

    the next ones coming up entered a work force that was highly diluted of salary… if the process was slow over 100 years or more, no problem, all at once, its like flooding a job market with foreign cheap labor.

    these still thought they had choices. the mothers were still with husbands. the illusion was easier to maintain. there were still men following the old success track and good values. laws had not yet been made asymetrical while touting that they were ‘fair’. court for family was made a secret court to protect the children (and to hide what the judges were doing).

    by 1980, things were about to shift. the men who were on the old plan, the leave it to beavers, and fathers know bests, became nerds and pariahs. they were born in the era of the space race and when scientists were gods, and now they were out of the scene. what was exciting? the bad boy? why? beacuse the girl was to have fun. remember cyndi lauper? girls just want to have fun.. and its raining men… and on and on… but another sub theme were things like what have you done for me lately.. and others which said, you gotta give if you want to be with the best.

    you can track the cahnges through music and the young. the 70s silly little love songs made way to the drug fantasy swirl of the disco era…

    and the same time that you say it went sour, that was the time when nihilst music, punk, discordent music and such became popular. the girls wanted to have fun, and they did…

    but they didnt have the morals of their pareents morals which were less than theirs. they were less likely to use birth control well, more likely to get in bad situations. they were addicted to drama sicne their lives were so boring (normally they would have been seeking mates and setting down maturing and finding purpose).

    so you have these older ones who look down on their children for what they did and what their granddhilren are like. you have high crime (no one home any more), you had deliquency (no parents and school pushing more liscence).

    utopia wasnt apprearing. so the heat was turned up on men. they were to blame! if only they cooperated and stopped being oppressors things woudl be great. so flirting at work was made illegal, dating became dangerous legally… feminists pushed the court into every aspect where womens lives went.

    particularly this feminis
    “Feminism, Socialism, and Communism are one in the same, and Socialist/Communist government is the goal of feminism.” – Catharine A. MacKinnon, Toward a Feminist Theory of the State (First Harvard University Press, 1989), p.10

    the magazines and shows were still showing them women who did it (while not pointing out some special quality that made it so that most dont have – evne if its just good luck).

    what was happening was that men were lagging the change. they were adopting. in the 80s they got slammed hard with court. they lost their property… they lost their families. my ex (never married) faked her murder, and later took the kid to rob a bank… i was told i had no rights by a judge. (now you know why i studied the subject. i desperately wanted to be a part of my sons life and had done absolutely nothing not to be. so like a person with cancer, you start reading, and finding out… so i am not so wierd, i was just hopeful of having my family… and thought if i could find answers i could do somehting. i found answers, but could do nothing)

    so what you have is these overlapping generations each one dealiing with different sets of transitory effects that slowly evolve as others adopt to the changes.

    well, men started to adopt. they started wanting prenups. they started saying. why marry. they “went their own way”. there was a marraige strike.

    but also, around the 80s the first women who put off marriage and were too late were coming up barren! their clocks stopped ticking. each generation had more of this as the pool of good father men diminished…

    women wanted romance, they got hookup culture.
    they all wanted prince charming, but instead got to be like a scullary maid with him, as everyone wanted the same top men.

    the other men they kissed off, they didnt want them. they married foreign women. they stayed single. they underperformed, they lived in their parents basement.

    [edited for length by neo-neocon]

  15. Artfldgr Says:

    i give up… i cant say anythin short.. sigh

    but you ask questions that takes books to answer in any meaningful way… sigh sigh


  16. Foxfier Says:

    Start blogging!

    It’s easy and fun. ^.^

  17. Oblio Says:

    Artfldgr, I’m sympathetic to your challenge here. This is perhaps the most important and basic post Neo has made. All politics, culture, and ideology are bound up in it. Neo should have a continuing series on this topic.

  18. Occam's Beard Says:

    Research on happiness: so, what do women want?

    If I had to guess, “barefoot and pregnant” would be my guess. Political correctness be damned.

    In this respect, I envy women. To be considered successful they only have to do one thing, it is clear what that is, how to do it, and doing it is (generally) within their power. Wow. Piece of cake!

  19. Tom Says:

    There exists a Journal of Happiness Research, which I’ve not read. But the Cato Institute did an interesting paper on happiness several years ago, in which the Journal was referenced.
    The points I remember from the Cato piece are 1) happiness is not a universal concept in either culture or language (!!), and 2) Conservative older white males are the happiest American demographic.

    Being less conflicted surely increases happiness as I experience it. The Marxist takeover of Obama et al. makes me angry, but not less happy.

    My theory is that a plot of happiness v. age usually (and certainly in my case) shows great peaks(joys) and troughs(despair, defeat) in the first decades. Later the peaks and troughs are much closer to the mean, showing sustained contentment. The slope of the mean is perhaps the variable between the sexes.

  20. Gray Says:

    Foxfier: “is it because I did good, or is it because I was the only woman available?”

    Whoa! You’re a chick?! I couldn’t tell from your posts or ideas.

    (Well, I guess there’s your answer! Hahahaha!)

  21. Gray Says:

    The contemporary eructation of “Keepin’ it real” is composed of half BS and half despair.

    There. Right there is why Van der Leun is worth reading.

    (He’s getting feistier over the past couple of years like Neo….)

  22. FredHjr Says:

    I think we men manage our expectations better. I have known more than a few women who are obsessed with perfection. Being a perfectionist sets you up for stress, despair, and unhappiness. Most men, like me, in our work, our family and love lives, and in our other activities are happy to give it our best and let the chips fall where they may. Perfection is an ideal we will never reach.

    I also think neo is on to something as well, about women in prior generations having more women around them to associate with and help them. Much as we guys do try to be good listeners I guess there are times when we are not who she wants to talk to. Sometimes women need to talk with other women, but today women are not as networked with each other. The support groups are not there. Also, women have become more competitive with each other. All of that diminishes the sense of unconditional acceptance that precludes being able to bounce things off of each other.

    My wife is very happy in our marriage, but I know there are times she would rather go out with her sister or friends, and I am happy to give her that space. Because when she’s happy, I’m happy too.

    The other thing to keep in mind is that life is hard sometimes. It’s just the way it is. There is going to be sickness, death, separations, setbacks, etc. And often they come in bunches, and this tests one’s endurance and patience. Again, it’s all about managing expectations.

    It helps to have a mature spirituality and prayer.

  23. Tom Says:

    Hey Artfldgr, I finally had the time to read the whole thing. You are persuasive and historically correct. With editing, your writing could be brilliant.

    Catherine McKinnon got a (gasp!) honorary degree from my son’s highly rated liberal arts college in 1991. Her 5 minute speech, to an audience of several thousand grandparents, parents, kids, grandkids and collegians consisted in large part of repeatedly screaming into the mike, “All men are f*ckers!” This is what passes for brilliance in a tenured feminist lesbian law professor, empowered to bend and warp young minds. The graduates, men & women, selected her for commencement.

    Our passivity, our good manners in the face of bad, is a big part of the cause of our social downfall. We shall not recover.

  24. jon baker Says:

    I get his sense of humor most of the time.

  25. Oblio Says:

    Fred, wrong tactics, wrong target. I understand your irritation, of course.

    I wonder whether we should be looking at the studies that say conservatives are much happier than liberals. It is hard to imagine people more unhappy than the MacKinnons of the world. Surely they deserve pity, if not professorships.

    Artfldgr is touching the Candace Bushnell Myth. We should probably factor in the role the Sexual Revolution and decline of marriage in increasing the risks that women face.

    Activities that seem fun and harmless when the social context is stable are not so fun and harmless when so many people take them up that they threaten the bonds of trust and certainty of status that hold together those mini-societies–family, church, company, school, neighborhood. Perhaps making sex political can’t lead to happiness. And perhaps most women need a man a lot more than a fish needs a bicycle.

  26. Promethea Says:

    It’s late, and I’ll probably post more on this subject tomorrow, but I have to say that most of the men on this thread have accepted the idea that the women’s movement was about destroying the family and hating men.

    As I said on a previous thread, the women’s movement was hijacked by the radicals. Those radicals picked the most outrageous positions and made the general public think that that was the women’s movement. The press helped the radicals defeat the “equal opportunity” people like me.

    In the early 1970s, most women in the women’s movement wanted equal opportunities. They wanted to get away from sex-role stereotyping. They wanted to be free to follow their personal dreams, whatever those dreams might be.

    This is a big subject, and I should write a book, but I won’t. Anyway, in my case, I always disliked the role of housewife or homemaker, and I always wanted to work at what I was extremely good at. My husband always supported me, so I was very lucky. There were no conflicts in my household. However, you cannot imagine the disdain I endured because I didn’t want to be a housewife. I simply am not interested in that aspect of life. I am not a house person.

    When I was growing up, girls and women were routinely disparaged for any interests that fell outside the accepted norms of the time. Our options, according to society, were extremely limited. Betty Friedan’s book was excellent in showing how advertisers promoted insane attitudes toward women. Sure, sure, she’s supposed to have been a communist. Who cares? In this area, she was right.

    As I mentioned on a previous thread, the granddaughter of the Spanish-speaking woman who raised my children is entering the Air Force Academy. To me, that is the greatest proof that my work has a feminist has succeeded. It is now considered normal for a young woman to enter the Air Force Academy. Hola. I’m really happy about this, because her grandmother grew up in the most primitive conditions imaginable.

    I just saw Star Trek today and was again pleased that it’s considered normal for women to serve on the Starship Enterprise. The original Uhura was a terrific role model for many young women, including one of our American astronauts. The new Uhura is a clever and successful American woman who gets a lot more appreciation than the original Uhura did.

    Let’s remember the bad old days before we pretend that things were great in those days. Those days were very limiting.

  27. Promethea Says:

    should be “my work as a feminist”

    Sorry, it’s late, and I didn’t proofread. Goodnight all.

  28. huxley Says:

    As an ex-hippie, feminist and radical lately turned somewhat conservative, I’ll say that I still support much of my earlier agenda. It was good and important to open up America to a larger, more inclusive reality than 1950s “Ozzie and Harriet” America.

    However, it’s just gone way too far in the other direction and we now have a president, congress and now a Supreme Court candidate intent on weakening and destroying the old America, heedless of the old virtues and Orwellian tendencies of the new.

  29. Oblio Says:

    Promethea, the wounds from those days, let’s highlight the Baby Boom years, go very deep. What you say could almost have come from my mother’s mouth. I recently attended a cocktail party and a surprising number of accomplished women wanted to share, before everything else and with someone they had only just met, their resentments from 45 and 50 years ago.

    I remember a book by anthropologist Marvin Harris arguing that the position of women relative to men declined materially in the post-war years, particularly in the amount of work required of very young mothers. Following Harris insight, one might believe that the basic problems had to do with 1) a relative shortage of men versus women after World War II and the Korean War and the 1930’s Birth Dearth; 2) unprecedented inter-group mobility and rivalry affecting men pursuing new opportunities; 3) an exaggerated degree of competition among women; and 4) the emergence of mass consumer culture centered on suburban housewives in a perpetual condition of status anxiety.

    One can easily see all kinds of anxieties, envy, and frustration emerging from a perfect storm like this leading to behavior (e.g. “disdain,” discouragement) by both men and women that leave marks to this day.

  30. Foxfier Says:

    Thank you.

  31. FredHjr Says:


    I think that our culture is now spiritually stultified. It has hit women the hardest because of a very complex un-tethering of some of the good elements from another era. Don’t get me wrong: I am all in favor of women having opportunities and being equally respected with men. In fact, that was never an issue with me. I was raised in a Catholic family that, while it did have some old-fashioned values, was flexible enough to incorporate some of the good things that came out of the women’s movement.

    As a kid growing up in the Sixties and a late adolescent in the very early Seventies, I did see some of the bad effects of materialistic competition among some of the women in the neighborhood I grew up in on the North Shore of Massachusetts. My mother hated the place, because many of the women she could not stand because of their phoniness and greed. And their kids were problems too. My parents moved out of there when I was in the Army. The atmosphere was just not good at all, for my two sisters and three brothers. So, they moved to rural New Hampshire and it was quite a change for Mom, because initially she missed the closer proximity to her family down there. Eventually, Mom came to love country living. And my siblings had fewer problems with bad peers and getting into trouble. Mom got on well with a few of the women in the neighborhood here in NH.

    I think the way forward for women becoming happier and healthier is not much different for the men. A return to a way of living that is less materialistic, more spiritual, more focused on people and building friendships, and having the habit of what I call contemplatively appreciating nature. The beauty of the created order can have a way of mesmerizing you, if you pay attention.

    We need more of Thomas Aquinas and less of Friedrich Neitszche.

  32. Darrell Says:

    Foxfier, that is an interesting comment about your accolades, that aside, I was heavily involved in the experiment of bringing women to sea on combatant ships in the 90s, in the next decade I reported to a ship that was around 15% female, female Suppo, female XO, etc. it was the right thing to do. Professionalism has no sex or race.

  33. Lex Says:

    Start blogging!

    It’s easy and fun. ^.^”

    Funny, I only come to this blog to read Artfldgr’s comments, and occasionally a couple of other posters. I doubt I’m the only one (I never comment, I’m sure there are others in that boat too.)

    Thanks for the wonderful analysis.

  34. expat Says:


    You just reminded me of something from my youth. My father was talking to his brother in law and told him that I was going to Philly that weekend to find an apartment. I had just graduated from college and gotten a job with the welfare department. We were all small towners and I was the first in the huge extended family to set off for the big city, a rather surprising development because I was sort of a quiet wimp. My choice was accepted without comment by my parents, and they helped me move and gather together odds and ends of furniture and kitchen equipment.

    My uncle was aghast that my father was allowing this. He said, “I wouldn’t let my boys move there.” The contrast in attitudes just amazed me.

    As a foootnote, after I found a tiny one-room place, my mom and her best friend came to visit. We all slept on the floor and had a fantastic time exploring the big city together. I sure lucked out in the parent department.

  35. br549 Says:

    I think I’m old fashioned. I enjoyed casual sex when young, as many did. Great for “trimming the horns” as it were, when things were still raging through the veins.

    But sex (for me) with someone I loved and chose over any and all others, and her me, was without equal. I wasn’t interested in “getting out of bed” when we were “done” for there was no other place I’d rather be, no other thing I’d rather be doing, no one else I would rather be with. The phone, the doorbell, went unanswered. And that feeling wasn’t just in bed. It encompassed everything. Until eventually, it didn’t. I know she has regrets. I know she believes somehow she was mislead. I know she understands you can’t reheat a souffle. She damned sure understands economics a bit better. Oh, and the meaning of “have to”.

  36. Webutante Says:

    It all boils down to one simple reality:

    White women lost their fried okra and black-eyed peas recipes and black women didn’t.

  37. Tatyana Says:

    Webutante: there are people who eat these things? let alone collect recipes for it?

    I am amused by how many people get sufficiently pleased with themselves by engaging into shaky generalizing.
    A task of measuring happiness should be a parody material, not a topic for serious discussion. Here is a subject that is not even possible to produce a definition for, because it is tied too closely to cultural, ethnic and behavioral differences in people. Yet, here we have not only “statistics”, based on self-description of being happy/slightly happy/occasionally happy – which is ridiculous in itself – but theoreticians, like Fred above, who are eager to use this rickety foundation for advancement of their favorite pet theories.

    Promethea came closer to revising real situation than anyone on this thread. Which is: happiness is whatever way you formulate for yourself it is as long as you’re not forced to comply with somebody else’s definition of it and prescription for achieving it.

    I’m sure there are women who feel in peace being barefoot and pregnant – good for them. And there are others, who are satisfied with their life only if engaged in their favorite professional work, 70 hrs a week. There are women who feel unhappy and abandoned if not supported by a net of 30 girlfriends, and others who are nauseated by necessity of constant communication. There are some who feel connection to nature and outdoor life, or prayers, or charity, or dry crackers, or sailing, or plowing fields and churning their own butter, or bossing around multi-million$ corporation – or just her own kitchen.

    There is no universal recipe, and can not be universal measurement. And thus – can not be universal policy for “encouraging happiness”.

    How did they concluded that older conservative males are the happiest group – what, did those males told them? Could anybody be so naive to take everything they are told at teh face value – and then build a “statistical fact” out of it?

    You can interpret it any way your political or ideological leanings dictate! One explanation: older white males are product of post-war deficit of males and thus were spoiled by exaggerated attention of women; it’s a sex-fulfillment happiness. 2nd: older white males’ most productive years fell on the period of male-dominated workplace and submissive females at home; it’s a power-happiness. 3rd: older white men used to live in white-dominated society; it’s a racial exploitation happiness.
    So on, so on. Whatever your ideological pony, you can use it as data!

    Now, I’m going to cook me breakfast most of you men will find flimsy, some of the women- too fancy and some – too primitive. And it’ll make me thoroughly content, if not happy, for the time being.

  38. br549 Says:

    And thank you for YOUR opinion, Tatyana. And for proving your point.

  39. FredHjr Says:


    Spell out for me your problem with the idea that human beings need to put back together again their cast off spirituality. And your problems with my view that unrealistic expectations can sometimes set people up for unhappiness. Or that crass materialism also breeds unhappiness.

    Don’t take oblique swipes at me with veiled aspersions.

    Spell it out. Bring it on.

  40. Tatyana Says:

    Fred: I’m not in a fighting mood.
    Let’s just say – your recipes are not universally applicable.
    As long as there is one person whose doesn’t comply with any of your grossly generalized statements – the statements become not universal.

    At least one person (me) exist who a) have no use for so called “spirituality” b)prefer crass materialism to all religious mumbo-jumbo, Catholicism included. I’m sure, there are more of us.

    Your theories might work well for your wife, friends and family, and a million other people. That doesn’t make you authorized to speak on behalf of human beings.

  41. Tatyana Says:

    not sure if I get you right, but just in case your were sincere: thanks.

  42. waltj Says:

    As a lifelong bachelor, I really don’t have a dog in the “what makes women happy” fight. Beats me, if I could have figured it out at some point, maybe I wouldn’t be on the north side of 50 and still single. Eventually, I got tired of the silly games and said the hell with it. My fault, their fault, it doesn’t matter. But as far as my own happiness goes, no problem. I’m financially sound (which A LOT of my married friends are not), and I have a great deal of flexibility in my own life, such as the ability to pack up and travel on a moment’s notice. I’ve lived and worked in some interesting places and will probably live in a few more before retirement. I have some very good friends, whose friendship goes back several decades, and an older sister whose family has given me the “roots” that have generally been missing from my life. Maybe it’s not that much, but I’d do it all again, and that’s as close to a working definition of “happiness” that I can find.

  43. Oblio Says:

    Tatyana, you shouldn’t fall into the “All or none” error. A reasonable reading of Fred’s comments wouldn’t lead one to think that he meant that he intended his observations to be equally true for every single person, without exception (and that means you). You should take seriously that what Fred said would be helpful and meaningful to many, many people, if not to you.

    Fred doesn’t have the right to speak authoritatively on behalf of all human beings, that is true; neither do you, and neither does anyone else. Where does that leave us? We must still generalize if we are to reason about society, culture, politics or anything else our incredibly messy species gets up to.

  44. Tom Says:

    A pity Tatyana doesn’t get it, with her non- universals: no recipe, no measurement, and thus no pro-happiness policy is possible.

    She is clearly an Auslander, who doesn’t grasp that Pursuit of Happiness is a Natural Right, God-given, and Liberty is the only policy that applies.

    I love okra. Can’t make a gumbo without ’em either, IMO.

  45. Tatyana Says:

    I’m not sure what I don’t get, if my point was exactly that: that only Liberty applies. In pursuit of happiness, as in anything else.

    Your shots about me, btw, are all misses. Except maybe one: I know there is no God-given right, because there is no God to give. It makes absolutely zilch difference, how many trillions of religiously-brainwashed think otherwise.

    I tried gumbo. Once. It went back the way it came, immediately.

  46. Tatyana Says:

    should I?

  47. Webutante Says:

    Is there a place around here, Neo, where a woman can go to have a good eructation?

  48. Tatyana Says:

    [sorry I posted too soon]

    but that’s my point exactly – I don’t think anyone should generalize – that’s why I DIDN’T. I allow people like Fred to be happy according to his criteria, and you – to yours. Namely – to find a woman who’ll share your belief that being barefoot and pregnant is an ideal life. Go for it, both of you.

    I’ll go further; I’ll say people’s individual definitions of happiness not only change horizontally, across nationalities, tribes, familial norms and cultural prejudices, but vertically (chronologically)
    There was a time in my life when I would share that model of yours: the floors in our apartment were made of old Austrian-era parquet and waxed with beewax. It was a pleasure to walk barefoot, in the summer, when I was carrying in my last trimester. First three months of my son’s life were so hard on me, I dreamed of relatively recent happiness of being pregnant, away from the office rush, of drowsy afternoons under a shaded window with a book of poetry or with a knitting, my head in the clouds, my family on tiptoe around me. What a contrast awaited me right afterwards.

    That model was very different from the one I had in my childhood, and yet more different from today.
    If one person’s idea of happiness can change so drastically during his/her lifetime, how is it possible even to attempt to prescribe even an approximation of ideal suited all and everywhere and at all times?

    We might form theories about benefit of individuals, families, groups, societal segments – but only about benefits, in material sense. “Happiness” is too individualized a concept to speculate about with a purpose of further universal recommendations.

  49. Oblio Says:


    I think you are confusing me with someone else. regarding “barefoot and pregnant.” Mrs. Oblio always wears proper shoes. She also reads this blog, so I could expect to get cuffed about the ears if I made such a statement, not that I would. Mrs. Oblio likes Occam’s Beard, so she would probably laugh at him, then smack him, too.

    Bur I disagree with you in substance: we must generalize in order to describe complex phenomena. We must abstract from the concrete reality in order to communicate. Yes, there are limits to the usefulness of such generalizations. But no has the right to rule them out out of order altogether. Better to engage in the dialog and discuss where a given generalization can be honored, and where it can’t.

  50. dane Says:


    The one really telling thing in your posts is the statement

    “I ALLOW people like Fred…….” (my emphasis on allow).

    How can you “allow” him to do anything? It speaks volumes.

    I also have one other question. So often when people say – there is a God – people (like you I assume) will say “prove it”.
    And yet you say you know there is no God. How can you prove there is no God anymore than I can prove there is one?

    Personally I agree with Blaise Pascal who said,

    ” If God does not exist, one will lose nothing by believing in him, while if he does exist, one will lose everything by not believing. ”

    And thinking of Pascal I have another observation – it amazes me how many philosophers were also mathematicians and scientists and yet still believed deeply in God. But then of course they had the advantage of not being so blinded by technological advances. They actually believed in the power of the human brain but were still humble enough to believe that brain was given to them by God.

    Another of pascal’s quotes is quite relevant today because so many are addicted to that God technology.

    “All human evil comes from a single cause, man’s inability to sit still in a room”

    How many people today do you know that would go crazy if they lost their phone, internet, and cable for a few hours? How many would pick up a book or go for a walk? Most of them would spend those hours on their cell (or a borrowed one) yelling at some poor customer service rep who can’t help them.

  51. Teri Pittman Says:


    I think you indicate one of the problems with the women’s movement. The women involved tended to be more intellectual than the women in the general population. They thought that the things that made them happy would make other women happy. It doesn’t work that way. Some women love nothing more than to raise children and create a comfortable home. They work mainly because they have to and because they are looked down on if they don’t. You also assume that the old days were bad because it cast a lot of women in those roles. I’ve run into several blogs by younger women who just assume that it must have been terrible to be a housewife in the 50s. They don’t understand that it was a great time for some women. They could just focus on raising their kids and they had a great support group with the other women in the neighborhood.

    As for me, frankly I am really ticked off at myself that I bought into that crap back into the 70s, the stuff that convinced me not to have children. They didn’t talk about where that leaves you when you are pushing 60. I think there are a number of lonely older women that bought into the same thing. Maybe it was wrong to think that there are things more important in a woman’s life than children. I just don’t know.

  52. Tatyana Says:

    Oblio: my bad. In one of the earlier posts you and OB complemented each other so well (and reading your dialogue was such a pleasure), I inadvertently mixed you up. My apologies to you – and especially to Mrs.Oblio.
    To your objection: at what stage, you think, the phenomena becomes too complex for generalizations – to the point that exceptions outnumber the rule? I think this is exactly the case with calculating something as ephemeral as happiness.

    *dane: my usage does speak volumes but only about my poor English verbs vocabulary. Let’s not erect strawmen about personal beliefs. You have yours, I have mine – and I’m over the age I was interested in discussing them.

  53. Oblio Says:

    Tatyana, I don’t know how you would demonstrate that the exceptions outnumber the rule. These kinds of problems are common in the social sciences; for example, anytime you deal with statistical analysis and analysis of variance (ANOVA). I don’t think they are unknown in the natural sciences.

    Perhaps you mean that the variance is too great to be explained with a single variable; but Fred never claimed to explain all the variance.

    Disproof by counter-example is a valid technique when dealing with people making claims that involve ALL or NONE.

  54. Foxfier Says:

    Darrell –
    Having seen the problems that having women caused– because there are folks willing to use and abuse their sex, rather than just work to get the @#$# job done– I have to wonder.

    More enforcement, and I’d agree whole heartedly, but….

  55. Tatyana Says:

    How? I thought I just did: every individual is an exception.
    Fred did exactly that, I quote:
    [I]dea that human beings need to put back together again their cast off spirituality.

    Note, he didn’t say “some humans”, or “my neighbor on the left”, or “people who skipped Sunday school lessons in Odessa, Ms”.

  56. Oblio Says:

    That’s just silly. Statements without qualifiers are not therefore universal by definition. That would be unreasonable.

  57. Tatyana Says:

    I don’t know how it is possible to read Fred’s propositions as other than universal.
    Perhaps he would be so kind as to clarify, how many people he meant while making his statements.

    Besides, as I said before – as soon as there exist even one counter example, the “truth” sease to be universal. It’s just common sense, no special skills in rhetoric required.

  58. FredHjr Says:

    As to the general philosophical point about “universals” – apart from my alleged universals – I have this to say. If you believe that there is such a thing as objective truth or truths that exist outside of your subjective experience, then at least the very possibility of “universals” is a plausible claim.

    My statements were nothing more than extending wisdom that I’ve learned in life and having received from the traditions I’ve been influenced by. They were neither mandates nor universals that rise to the level of universals as one would understand it in the Aristotelean and Thomist traditions. They may or they may not work for you.

    I apologize to you and to everyone else on this forum for being so forward as to offer my pretensions to wisdom and for having been so insulting as to infuse the wisdom with references to my theistic tradition. I never knew that my Christian traditions have been so oppressive towards and harmful to so many women as to elicit such rebuke. And since I have nothing to offer in a discussion of women’s issues, I will take my leave of this and and eschew any future threads devoted to women’s themes and issues.

  59. Tatyana Says:

    Now, that is even more amusing.
    First, Fred gets all ready for a bar brawl with his toe-stepping “you have a problem with me?!?”
    Then he goes Jesuit, with phony repentance and apologies, sticking in more fake generalizations (“oppressive towards and harmful to so many women “) – every word of this is a exaggeration and misrepresentation of what I actually said. Then he made it look as if I was offended by his Christian tradition – are you sure you’re fit to represent whole of Christian tradition, Fred? I think it’s a sin of pride…may be you should save it for your next confession.
    And he ends on a crescendo – he goes sulking in the corner – oh, no, please, come back, sweet Romeo!

    So operatic. I mean the classic Italian opera, not the German one.

  60. FredHjr Says:

    Yes, I was indeed being sarcastic, because the post you made that I was indeed universalizing my advice and observations to apply to every particular life was a bad faith argument. And clearly from the get-go in this forum your snarky first post that derided what I had written dripped with insolence.

    This morning I was quite angry with it, but after a day spent in the rural reaches of western New Hampshire with my wife and her cousins had put me in a different frame of mind. I then realized that sarcasm was a good way to go to deal with your insolent mockery.

    You clearly have anger issues directed at men, and for some reason something about my personality, as it comes through in my posts on this topic really set you off.

    My mere succumbing to sarcasm pales in comparison to the poison that is in your heart and mind. I can assure you that in real life I am not the kind of man who would have wounded you, if I were your father, brother, or a boyfriend or husband. And I have never, ever been abusive or disrespectful of any woman in my life.

    Or, is it God you are angry with? We’ve all been there, myself included. But it’s quite another thing to remain stuck there. Even those who don’t believe in God are angry with God at some point in their lives.

    But it was clearly my mistake to participate in a forum where some guy is bound to rub an angry woman the wrong way, even if without intention. I’ve learned my lesson.

  61. Donna B. Says:

    Webutante – not all white women have forgotten how to make fried okra and black-eyed peas (though I prefer purple hull peas). Not only that, I can also make cornbread from scratch.

    And I’m content with my life.

  62. Oblio Says:

    Fred, I keep saying that we need to listen better. Tatyana might have something to say about what’s bugging her about this discussion. There is clearly a militant anti-religious thread in there, and a defense of materialism. We see a lot of her attempting to chop logic, without much success, in my opinion. I don’t quite understand what her frame of reference is for this discussion. She certainly singled you out from the beginning, so presumably you said something that got up her nose, if only a little bit.

    At yet there must be something underneath it. If happiness as a topic is too gauzy and ephemeral, why bother responding in the first place? I’m not particularly strong on the philosophers, but it seems to me that happiness is an ancient and honorable topic in moral philosophy.

  63. FredHjr Says:


    Clearly, I am out of my depth in this particular forum. At this point I doubt that what I have to say has any value or meaning.

    Happiness really is about the effect of one’s experiences in proximity of one’s expectations of life. That’s a very complicated formula that seems deceptively simple.

    For me, it all begins with a correct understanding of the nature of the human being and a realistic assessment of life. For all of us, our destiny is our date with death. For the Christian, death is not the end, but the doorway to another dimension. We do not know exactly what’s on the other side, so we are here in this dimension to make the most of an incredibly complex balancing act that involves not only the satisfaction of our own desires but, as much as we can achieve, the proper appreciation for the needs of others too. We are charged with that mission. Love is the verification of our faith. So, at some level we are most fulfilled when we immerse ourselves in loving others. Because it comes full circle to the nature we were created as. Imitatio Jesu.

    A life lived in complete disregard for our own legitimate needs only burns one out. It cannot be lived without the destruction of the self. But also a life that is lived only for our own selfish and egotistical ends destroys us too.

    I’m straying far from what neo’s topic is, now, and I don’t care. I’m communicating with you, Oblio, not the other person who is offended by my theological musings.

    So, there, I’ve made a statement that is about as close to a universalizing as one can get. It’s about balancing the energies expended for the right values and our own legitimate needs. Being a husband, a father, a lover, a friend, a provider, a sharer, one who encourages liberty in one’s loved ones, and a man cognizant of his duty to others and to God. If that is so offensive to some, then there is nothing I can do about it. It’s their problem, not mine. I’m on what I think is the right path. It has not been easy. I have not always been “happy” but the struggles and the victories all mean something. This is who I am and I’m not going to apologize for it. And my failings are something between me and my Maker.

  64. Oblio Says:

    Thank you, Fred. I understand your frame of reference. I see that you are a man who takes his responsibilities and obligations seriously–or tries to–and is not living for the moment or for your convenience. Despite your work as a financial analyst, you are emphatically not materialistic. Judging by the number of women around you and your ability to appreciate people, relationships, and beauty outside of yourself, you benefited from your years of philosophical study. In all this context– meaningful work, meaningful relationships, self-knowledge about who you are, where you have come from, and where you are going–you find the stuff of happiness.

    A few years ago, I had an insight that Mrs. Oblio could have told me, if only I could have understood. My old high school (down the road from you) had as its motto Non Sibi. There is some wisdom there. In middle age, I find that the more I invest in my community, and in the people around me, the happier and more productive I am. I notice that people who serve their own vanity, who are selfish and short-sighted often end up unhappy. I regret the years I lost to misplaced pride and vanity, never understanding how proud and vain I was. But it was not all for naught: as William Blake says, “If a fool would persist in his folly, he would become wise.”

  65. Artfldgr Says:

    Women less happy after 40 years of feminism

    Despite wealth, health and opportunity, men still more content says study by US National Bureau of Economic Research

  66. Artfldgr Says:

    Hey Tom,
    Thanks for taking the time to read it. It comes out stream of consciousness and funny thing is that its driven by the question. That is I don’t think these things when no one asks a question. While I do write for some places from time to time, my editing is as bad as my brevity. I used to get good grades despite that because the teachers were always intrigued by having something not boring to read.

    I am VERY not against women succeeding or any one else for that matter, but if your not the best, then your not the best. I have been beaten by many women, kudos to them. Never bothered me much to lose when I lost honestly. There are plenty of competitions in life for me to win and unlike in the past, losing is no longer equated with dying or being sentenced to some permanent state.

    However, I AM against promoting things and hiding the bad side or twisting the truth, or manipulating people to achieve an end result in record time. Replacement birth rate is important, as is lots of other things.

    I think it boils down to freedom.

    If your not making choices from valid information, then your not free.

    The women haven’t been given valid information to make choices from, and so they are told they are free more than ever before, but they feel so much less free than ever before. The dissonance makes them ill, angry, confused, displaced, and incapable of steering the boat to the end they want as they cant even focus that end and know what they want is what THEY want.

    If one was to study old culture from a stand point of efficient living and maximizing life through maximizing choice through comparative advantage, then male female family structure is the most mathematically proficient.

    I can show the math and prove it. AND I can show the simple truth that any pair that is not complimentary can’t do as well just because of that alone. The way this is neutralized is that the more proficient group sacrifices their natural advantage and positive outcomes by denying comparative advantage and try to split their home work 50:50. (this eventually leads to a performance level that to the woman feels like failure since they should be doing better. her biology says that her mate isn’t the best, since their performance is always mediocre or less than optimum)

    What do do about things? I make no suggestions. Which is why I should really brook no crappy attacks by feminists. I am very careful not to say what should be done. Which means that when someone is angry at me for what I say, they are angry that the truth exposes what is a bad course of action.

    Right now the truth is that women refuse to ever do an accounting in any empirical terms of whether their lives and choices are better now or worse. One should realize that in many ways, rather than their lives being a happy gulag, their lives where what they would live if they mostly were wealthy enough not to work to earn money to live. That is if they had a stipend from some trust, their lives would be little different if that stipend where near what their husbands would bring in and or manage. So the feminists twisted the daily chores of someone who would do most of them anyway, to being slavery because they had to throw in the extra persons stuff in too. The feminists figured out how to shift the work in the home for benefit of family which was not taxable, to being a taxable force in building an economic end, not a social beneficial one which was the selling point.

    oh, and thank you all for some of the most intelligent and honest converstation on this subject i think i have ever participated in!!

    sorry i have no answers, i am not into experimenting in peoples lives by saying we as a mass should do this. other than my constant singular answer of let everyone know whats happening and what the outcomes are and trust that they will juggle themselves and work it out.

    no one is arguing going backwards, but some of us are arguing that going forwards was falsely credited and was used to hide other things that were not going forwards but inversions that ended up debasing things.

    whether women like it or not, they are the sources of the next generation. if they do not think this is their primary purpose (and i am not declaring it is), then the population they belong to whithers and dies out. end of story.

    mathematically speaking for every woman that does not have a child, another woman has to have 5 so that the population remains stable, more if its to grow, and more if its to maintain in the face of random occaisional disasters (like pandemics).

    is this some patriarchal conspiracy? nope. just reality and reality is rude and will have her way.

    the choice was never ours to make.
    (since the wrong choices lead to death and we have no way to change that by just believing otherwise)

    the morals for a world that was not real, because the real world had not really changed, the future never really became certain, and we stopped looking out after our own interests worrying about really stupid crap.

    we are worried about running out of natural materials in a solar system in which there are planets many times our size and a huge cloud of ore just floating around. literally limitless material from a human perspective.

    we worry about litter, but never realized that way before 700 years are up for us to have the pepsi bottles gone, we would have thought they were really good places to mine for ores and materials than many places around the planet!

    and space? room? well, if we dont go socialist thanks to the goals of these few women, no matter what their supporters believe otherwise, or think their greater mass of nicer beliefs actually means something different when someone else is defining the aggregate goal.

    nuclear waste will be disposed of in the sun. we are less than 200 years from ubiquitous flights, if our economy is allowed to flourish.

    one has to understand that under the new feminine reasoning and submissive popultion we are worried about poverty like this:

    note the expensive cell phone that the homeless person is taking the picture with.

    there is no way to have it both ways.

    you cant have the productive moral society that dictates a combination of actions that you are free to do and not free to do which optimizes things and gives you that moral society by removing the very thing that causes it.

    there is no way to have that moral society without the limitations it imposes from its social wisdom.

    the state ends up replacing that wisdom and the state is much much worse at it than anything else can be. at no time did past societies invent killing their own as a solution in a universe that they can look up in every day and know was quite beyond their ability to “waste”.

    thanks guys!!! 🙂

  67. Tatyana Says:

    I’ll not answer to this string of insults, camouflaged as righteous indignation; the only thing missing from Fred’s diatribes is announcing at the end of the mud-slinging exercise that he’s crying for my lost soul and going to pray for my happiness and enlightenment. That would be the true form, following the sanctimonious template I’ve encountered before.
    Or maybe he did just that; sorry, I was too bored to finish his posts.

    The rest is the mutual back-patting session between him and Oblio- who proceeds to discuss me disparagingly over my head, despite me standing right there (Hello! I can hear you! Talk about puzzling reasons for women being unhappy…). Since, obviously, my presence required only as a prop for erecting a strawman (or woman, being the case) and then successfully exterminating it, I’ll leave them to enjoy this exciting activity without me.

    Actually, this whole thing is a good example of my earlier note, i.e. how the topic of measurement happiness is so unscientific and the definition itself is so imprecise that it could be used for any ideological hangup, from either side of the isle. Be it blaming “racist male chauvinistic patriarchy” for alleged satisfaction of older while conservative men (from the Left), or “military anti-religious defense of materialism” and “lack of spirituality”for perceived unhappiness of women (from the Right).

    So, back to the topic of happiness.
    Two things occurred to me today, reading an unrelated thread on another blog about inevitable failure of all efforts of improving of humanity (that same “progress” in “progressive’).
    -The improvers fight with something they perceive as bug, while it is being a feature.
    -At least part of confusion might be eliminated if all the statistical studies changed the word “happiness” to “satisfaction”, and developed measurable criteria for it. I know, even that is a goal that is almost impossible to achieve, but it’s still better tactic, I think.

  68. Oblio Says:

    Tatyana, I don’t see the string of insults. I would say that Fred might be presumptuous to state his inference that you have anger issues related to men and God. I’ll agree “poison in your heart and mind” is way too much: we really can’t know that.

    I will stand by “militant anti-religious theme;” when you start out saying you “prefer crass materialism to all religious mumbo-jumbo, Catholicism included,” you have nailed your colors to the mast on this point. Perhaps you are not against religion that is not “mumbo jumbo,” and if so, you can correct me on this.

    I will also stand by not being impressed with the precision of your logic. You started out creating a strawman out of Fred’s testimony and conjecture. Now you are complaining about strawmen, and I don’t have any idea what you are talking about.

    You complain that people are picking this data up and trying to make it fit a narrative. You should get used to it, because the same thing happens to every piece of information. If you want to say that you don’t want to hear any counter-narratives, well, you are out of luck.

    Promethea has testified with some and admirable authenticity. Fred has done the same, and I have offered some commentary on Fred’s testimony and offered testimony of my own.

    I am sure that people here would listen respectfully if you did the same as Promethea and Fred.

  69. Tom Says:

    All study of happiness depends on perception of the word itself. Renaming it to “satisfaction” changes the whole thing. But there are no “measurable” criteria for either that come to my mind. You seem to think such exist, Tatyana. If so, name some.

    As an aside, it is part of the nature of the Progressive Left to change word meaning and usage. “Happiness” is what it is, and it is not “satisfaction”.

  70. Oblio Says:

    Terri Pittman, Webutante, Artfldgr, and Donna B have also given personal testimony. It is moving. But I bet Donna B’s corn bread is not better than mine, and I wouldn’t eat okra on a dare.

  71. huxley Says:

    I gotta say that I would be steamed were I in Tatyana’s sneakers.

    I doubt it’s worth sorting out in a topic this close to its blogging expiry, but that’s my vote.

    Per the study in question, I was wondering why the men are so happy — assuming that’s what the author means when he says “Today, that gender gap has reversed. Male happiness has inched up, and female happiness has dropped.

  72. FredHjr Says:

    At this point a part of me really does not care about women in our society IN GENERAL being unhappy (by whatever quantitative measuring is employed). The women in my family are generally happy and content people. My mother. My sisters. My nieces. My wife is a happy person, overall (not happy with her employer, at times for the way they treat her – and her boss is FEMALE). My mother in law is not a happy person, but when her husband was alive the marriage had been dead for years. And now she is in declining health. Not a happy circumstance. My sister in law is not generally a happy person, but neither is her husband.

    I will say this: it’s a complicated phenomenon. The truth is that both we and other people play a role in our relative happiness or unhappiness. If we treat others like crap, it generally means that we are probably not happy people and we take our anger and meanness out on others. Usually, though not always in every case, if we treat others well we will reap what we sow there too.

    As for “Tatyana” on this thread… She first took a swipe at me. I hit back. She hit back. I hit back. She hit back. In all likelihood, in an actual social situation I’m the type of guy and with the kind of thinking that she detests. And I’m the kind of guy who generally does not go looking for trouble, but if you are going to start something with me, don’t expect to come out of it without a sign that you’ve been in a fight. As for those who think she’s the aggrieved party and that I’ve been an underhanded bully, please go back and read her initial post and put yourself in my shoes.

    My values and testimony were initially mocked by her. I didn’t start this. I would never have made snarky remarks about her worldview if she had left me alone. Like I said, if you are going to spit in my face or kick me in the groin, don’t be surprised if I hit back.

  73. Oblio Says:

    Why is that, huxley? Maybe you are seeing something I don’t, but I am puzzled. What do you think Tatyana wanted to achieve by poking at Fred?

  74. Gringo Says:

    I wouldn’t eat okra on a dare.

    I always looked forward to my grandmother’s okra- tossed in cornmeal and sauteed in bacon grease. You could do a lot worse than okra, but you wouldn’t know unless you tried it.

  75. Oblio Says:

    Gringo, I have tried it, and you are right, you could do a lot worse than okra, but I don’t like a lot of that stuff either. Lobster bisque. Aspic. Rocky Mountain oysters. Sweetbreads.

  76. FredHjr Says:


    The thing is, I’ve never in my life forced my religious views on other people. Case in point: my wife does not go to Mass. She’s an agnostic. I never make her feel less valued because she does not practice as I do. I never publicly humiliate a person because he or she is an atheist or agnostic. And that will never happen. For my wife, perhaps the killer of her faith was the fact that for many, many years she prayed to God that her parents’ marriage would mend. It never did. She does not understand why God could be so distant to her earnest concerns. I think that wound is just so raw. Plus, she was really close to her dad and feels that her mother was cruel and unfair towards him (and I think there’s truth to that view). Also, her father died after a long, painful decline from multiple strokes which gave him aphasia and apraxia. She saw no divine mercy in this, but I explain to her that most people experience really bad shit in their lives, at some point. And it’s not God’s fault. It’s just the way it is. She does believe that there is a creative force or power in the universe, but that it is completely remote to our needs and condition. I try to tell her that I can name scads of examples of how she may be wrong about this, but I know it’s an exercise in futility because she has wounds that are just too raw. And I content myself and console myself with the knowledge that the Creator will heal her some day in ways that I cannot. And I think we all will be, and that ultimately it will be OUR decision to either accept it or reject it.

    Disclaimer: I am not saying that this is the case all of the time. I think in many cases a lot of people’s pain comes from rifts and ruptures in relationships going back to our family life, especially when we are kids. I KNOW I’ve had mine, and was very fortunate to have been able to come to terms with it before I met my wife and got married. Some of it was even resolved before I entered the seminary.

    We’re not perfect. But it is our choice to accept and also give love, or reject it and wallow in anger. Anger is not necessarily a bad thing, but holding on to it eventually rots us.

  77. Oblio Says:

    Thanks for that, Fred. For what’s worth, I don’t see you trying to force your religion on anyone. So don’t sweat it. You don’t need to justify yourself.

    Yes, the Problem of Evil, as we used to call it when we were reading Paradise Lost, which intended “to justify the ways of God to Man.” Bad things happen, and how can that be if His Eye is on the sparrow? Big problem after the middle of the 20th Century, but never easy before that.

  78. Tatyana Says:

    yes, it changes the whole thing – that was the idea, as I said. You seem to think I propose to change definition of “happiness”it self – it is not so; the task would be impossible – all collected wisdom of all humans lived before us still didn’t come up with one and only all-encompassing definition. No, I propose to use “satisfaction” for sociological studies and polls INSTEAD of “happiness”.

    Because as little as there could be measurable criteria for evaluating “satisfaction”, there are even less for “happiness”. You can express “satisfaction” as a package of concrete things, a series of lines in a “multiple choice” arrangement on a poll. But you can’t do it for “happiness” – because of a number of prohibitives: happiness t comes from within, sometimes unrelated to exterior circumstances of your life; everyone has his/her own definition; everyone has different definition in various times of their life. There is also a folk wisdom about fools being the happiest people – it seems to be true, look at always grinning village idiots…and compare to tragically gloomy intellectual geniuses. It depends on emotional composition, on a type of personality as psychologists define it, on mental health – hell, it even depends on weather! Even so tiny sliver of possible variables as this thread displayed multitude of individual ideals.

    To your aside: sticking labels on people might be fun, just don’t slap me with “Progressive leftist”. I’ll give you number of others, closer describing me, if you want: anti-communist, classical liberal, objectivist, anti-clerical, libertarian.

    *huxley: thanks. I’m not steamed, rather – amused and a bit disappointed, “underneath it all”. Protesting much is always a sign of confirmation to the opposite, in my eye- and I detest demagogues and bullies.

  79. Tom Says:

    Please don’t personalize. My comment was “As an aside”. How is that anti-Tatyana? But I guess if the shoe fits….
    The whole point about happiness and satisfaction is they are INDEPENDENT of concrete things.
    I also recommend you steer away from outmoded stereotypes like happy village idiots. Down’s Syndrome is associated with a happy, cheerful affect, it is true. But tragic depressed brilliant intellectuals as a stereotype hardly makes me regret my high IQ. I am happy. I know what the word means.

  80. Tatyana Says:

    *Thank you, Tom.
    I didn’t ask for recommendations.

    *The shoe doesn’t fit – as I explained.

    *Satisfaction is applicable to concrete things. I’m sure a person with high IQ, as you are, will find lots of items for a list of “satisfactory” and “unsatisfactory” in his life. And what’s important, other people will respond the same qualifiers. Just with not the same preferences. For instance, ”
    Yes” or “No” to “Are satisfied with your housing situation”, and “Very” or “not applicable” to “Are you satisfied with level of spirituality?” That makes it measurable.

    *You say, on one hand, ‘happy village idiot’ is an outmoded stereotype, on the other, it is true that Down’s syndrome is associated with cheerful effect. So, it’s not so outmoded, is it? Besides, there is a long list of psycho-mental disorders characterized by “cheerful outlook” besides Down – I don’t know why you chose this one to exemplify “village idiot”.

    *OK, you know you’re happy. But your idea of happiness might be different from what Promethea’s or *waltj’s. In fact, I’m almost sure it is different.
    Rinse and repeat everything I said before.

  81. Artfldgr Says:

    I was wondering why the men are so happy

    Because they are free, now that they mostly have adopted. The women thought they were oppressed. But in the game of inversions, what did that mean truthfully? That they were the oppressors of men, making men work for love, their company, and children while they were not dying, losing their health, and popping off early.

    So the women who had all the power. (just ask marx), were inverted.

    The powerful women were told they had no power.
    They were told to look to who earns rather than who spends. So they saw that men earned more, but they didn’t see that they gave it to them to spend. Who has the power, the earner or the spender? Before you answer that tatyana, remember that you earn money, the state takes it and spend it. who has the power?

    They were then told that to get power, they would have to leave their won place of power that they now thought was no power, and enter and compete toe for toe with someone made to interface between the inner world of the woman and the outer world of deadly competition, and whose Darwinian mandate is to acquire more than 3 times what he needs alone to share with others.

    Well, you see, the men never realized why they were not liked. Why they were wrong for wanting love. Why they were enemies for working so hard they die early for someone who can only find fault with them, etc. They took all this honeslty, just as the femnazies knew they would since they were basing that on real biology while pretending it didn’t exist so no one could say, hey! Your doing this, cause this is that. by denying that, no one could say they were doing this.

    Anyway… to make one of my long things shorter, the bottom line is that each generation of men tried to adapt, and after three generations they have adapted.

    Men are more adaptable than women (despite all the false stuff women say about women to convince women), their women require them to be. women don’t select less adaptable men as mates, they don’t select incompetents, the unambitious, etc. but men do!

    Men biologically are made to adapt to any outside situation no matter how bad because at least 2 others will depend on him women are biologically made to work a more fixed system so that they are great at it as long as men can make things stable. Which is why women look for security, which is stability. They select their men for the qualities that they were told to compete in that their men don’t. They could never win this race (at least not until they decided to work and then select men who were less smart than them, support them at home without getting upset they don’t work, and produce lots of children who are similar to that)

    Well, now men know the game, they have adapted. When they are young they start playing their cards, and so they play the cards that allow them to make out best in the world in real terms. And real terms has to do with fertility and such issues, not whether you earn enough to own an island.

    First you had polygamy (the societies that were matriarchal or many men to one women are almost non existent, so they can be weeded out to shorten my passage), and so one man had many women, and many men had none. The trick though is that the one had to be better than all the other men to get these women. He had to earn and support all of them, or have none of them. metrosexuals and eunics were favored as only those that were with this man would have access.

    In the old system, we had monogamy. Lack of easy divorce, early marriage, etc. made for something close to real monogamy. And in a monogamous social group, almost everyone gets someone. Since they are not real monogamous, there is cheating. Metrosexuals and eunichs were not needed from fertility dynsastic point.

    Actually we had both… the poor had monogamy… but the powerful had a polygamy of the same rulers in a harem, except that the harem was the workers. Maids, and others went to work hoping that a son would be born and that would change their state of life, just as you can tell the beauty difference between those that work on wall street and those that work other areas.

    So the wealthy didn’t have harems, but instead had the poor to dip into as their harems. They employed them to have access, and protect them from others access, and so on.

    But this system gave monogamy to the masses and property ownership, and many children, and so on. basically establishing rule by the peop.e.

    so now we have a new hybrid system. its not the old harem system where men had to earn and pay for their women.. (and the women got one great man). it wasn’t the western harem system where you had servents and things and could dip into that pool as your access (feminists hated that didn’t they? Harrasement?).

    ah… but if that was the case as what happened to Europe, the masses of the moral people who each had someone, sure didn’t like the dynasty system. the middle class became the enslavers and enemy of the wealthy. It crimped their fun.. the old harem system was very moral. But the new one gave you all kinds of things. even pedophiles and sexual sadism was a pleasure for the ruling class through this system.

    so basically they debauched the population. Now they have a harem system, but rather than they having to supoor the women and guard access, they are not used for children but for fun. They hate having children, so that you can have children with the wives and such, while having all the fun with all these poor people who are as loose as a professional whore, but earn their own keep and fall all over to be used.

    The men have figured out the game that the elite have played, and that through serial monogamy, they made the population of women their own SHARED harem in which the women pay for it themselves.

    In a harem, I could have 1000 women and more in my life, but have to house, support, etc. meanwhile the majority of the average joes had almost none…

    In the western version of old, I could have 100 or so in my life, and just pay them a wage to clean and do things around the house. Meanwhile the average joe got someone close to their own station and was happy and prodictive

    Then the changes of the feminists. No more harrasement at work, so no more harem from employing them. but then again, they moved sex to be free!!! And so what used to be exchanged for a life of partnership at best servitude at worste is a free and worthless commodity.

    Well, hookup culture is here, and 80% of the women go after the top 20% of men. The top 20% have a harem even before they even earn anything. the women debase themselves and do all kinds of things that even hookers wouldn’t do unless they specialized and you paid them a lot.

    the middle men who would have had decent wives but had no one till they hit 40, and then were taken advantage of, no longer do that. they see this isnt productive. So they abandon these 80% of women to other things. their parents basement, less effort to earn, marry foreign *(Which feminists wanted to stop too).

    so here is what you can see if you rise up above it and don’t listen to the femnits.

    The men are happier bcause they get happy when they figure the world out. competency for men means that they can master the world around them, or they can know they shouldn’t and choose something else.

    Over the past 30 eyars they have tried to find something theat works. but they are belittled, absued, and such for it.

    So they are happy since they are no longer playing that game. they figure that they cant win it. they figure that either they earn lots of money, or they are not in that top 20. they know that they are not in that top 20 before they are even in high school… with the economics of the free market bad, they know they cant get to that top 20 as capitalists.

    So they now know not to waste their time.

    Unlike the women, they are not trying to live an impossible life. they have adapted and are living lives as best they can.

    The women didn’t know what it was like to have to earn and clear an extra 5k a year or more just to meet women. after all, they still think the men should pay for the first date. And so the men see them burning th stick at both ends and give up on such a person, with such a person you can never get a fair shake.

    That 5k became womens entitlement. The women have big mouths. They would talk and ignore the men that they were not sexual with, intellectual whores the men are called, and then think that this made no difference. Over time the men sat there and learned that women thought nothing of getting their meals for free by just refusing the third date. Some would have 2 dates a night… they woud dump a guy for following the msm take on dating, but want the old way…

    The list goes on and is huge, and most men know them, but most women deny it.

    So the men went south… if I am not going to date once a week because I am not nasty, interesting, full of drama, violent, monied, wanted by lots of other women, etc. then why go after the money.

    Meanwhile, if they want to have more kids than bill gates, they only have to stop earning and start playing women…

    So today the two biggest fertile groups are the elite, and the crappy stypid lazy men who play women and don’t stay with them.

    It doenst take long for men to see what gets them laid and what gets them what they want.

    In the past, I had to show how good I was. I couldn’t even get access to her to talk to her if I wasn’t of good potential. She had value and I had to prove myself worthy of that value.

    Now, she has no value. her actions most of the time make her a less good mate (is a good mate one that doestn have kids, and abandons them to strangers to do her own thing a good choice of fertile mate?). he also knows that she will blame him for everything. and so there is only one way to get equity in that situation. not be there.

    She has very little value on the market. by the time she is in her young 20s she has an STD (40%). She is harderned by being used. She is less fertile either in mind or in practice, or in poor judgment. she is ready to use and blame him and treat him poorly and think that’s normal.

    So the men are happy. In my office alone more than half the married men are married to foreign women. they wont go near American women, western women.

    As the men do this, and opt out of fertility (remember men are made to opt out on fertility asince natuyrally most don’t get to be fertile in our old primitive past, unlike women). they can opt out of being successful.

    By the way, this is what made us socialist. The women in order to win against people designed for work outside, had to get the men to not want to be capitalists and compete. see why competition is bad, they would beat the women. see nhow that takes advantage of the women for the state, that forces everyone to work, and not have kids so that you can have more. it forces the smarter middle class to self exterminate in favor of the elite and a poor helpless underclass.

    Men have figured out the game. with 40% of them from a broken home, they know they have no purpose with a woman in this new society. There is no winning, there never was. There WAS equity but the women don’t believe there was since they now listen to strangers with a hidden agenda. So with them now there is no equity (and its so pervasive that everyone things inequity is equal). Since you can’t have equity with such, you abandon them to other things. They end up not breeding, and in the future men have women who arent like this.

    the key to succeeding in the REAL world where men have been working away from women for millinea is knowing when to quit, knowing when a goal is unreachable, etc. women don’t have that inborn skill yet. they have so many other ways to help them get something done. you couldn’t convince men they could have it all, but you could convince women who were biologically stupid to this end. (its what they did, it succeeded really well, so the can be no argument against this)

    My son has told me not to expect anything out of him. he is 21, has no girlfrienhd, they are all after the thugs, jocks and such, and after they are done, he isnt much interested. So he is persuing his own life. his mother is a nut, and he knows it, still loves her, but realizes you don’t live that way, so he is ok there. he doesn’t date. He spends his time with friends playing video games. Plans to underachieve since there is no reason to produce in a world where parasites do better (and your not a leader).

    And I know tons of them.

    Meanwhile, the women are following the ways of the Sanford experiment. They are getting nastier and nastier. More violent. They punch and think no one will hit them back. I have been assaulted several times on the subway this year by them and you cant do anything about it. they are very hostile to me and my Chinese wife, especially when they see us happy.

    When she is not around they try to psychologically attack me, but I love my wonderful wife to much to even listen. Oh, if my wife was American that would work, since she would be like they say, buit she is not, so she is not, and they are wrong, and its just sad.

    I am happy… for the first time in 30 years.

    But then again, I gave up on western women for the first time in 25..
    Met this woman who had not yet been poisoned, married her…
    And now we have a wondefful happy little life.

    The feminist on the first floor invited my wife to poison her.
    She threw a party with all her feminist friends to meet my wife since she knoew I was anti feminism (not anti women or anti person).

    Well, the next day she hollered… your wife is so wonderful!! I said thanks. And she said “and she has more freedom than any of us at the party. I know your antifeminist and such but how is that so?”.

    Well, its hard to explain to her that my wife and I are happy because in our little world we are individuals. We have value, we respect each other, we arent told by the sisterhood to search phones, or to spy… to trap each other. we are not paranoid. And the list goes on and on.

    Men are happier because they have adapted to the reality

    Women are unhappy because reality didn’t adapt to their wishes, and men didn’t make it adopt either.

    Over time. the one that adapts is happier, and the ones ruining their lives to prove what cant work so cant be adapted to, are miserable.

    One cant deny what one is, and ones reason for existence, and be happy.

    Women are doing that, and men arent.

    Over time between realizem and adaptablity one group will always bob to the top
    And when their fortunes were mixed, their parner would bob up too with them.

    But now their fortunes are separate, she does not bob to the top, she does not adapt
    She is in a fight to make the world be what she used to have provided
    Her facilitarot, and partner has bowed out looking for better and more realistic partners.

    In 300 years all those women will be gone… and their genes too.
    So it wont be a problem

    Nicest thing about the nasty women of feminism is that they are not breeding..

  82. Artfldgr Says:

    *OK, you know you’re happy. But your idea of happiness might be different from what Promethea’s or *waltj’s. In fact, I’m almost sure it is different.
    Rinse and repeat everything I said before.

    this is why people used to be a lot happier in the US than anywhere else.

    because in a free country, you are able to define happiness the way you want… and live the way you want.

    the feminists said no way to that. women had to live the way that feminsits said.

    and just to save the time, i will just put up a few top feminist leaders quote on the issue.

    bottom line. the more free you are to be something good, and the harder it is to be free to be something that is bad, the more happy a society is.

    this is confused with the more free you are to be anything you want to be, the more happy you are. buit this doesnt cut it if your gay, a pedophile, mental, etc… (100 pedophiles that are to be released are asking to not be released. i would suspect that their form is a ocd form while others love what they do).

    today, women are only good if they do what the harridens say.

    most women want a family. most women would not mind a husband, etc..

    but since a major tenet of communism is destruction of family (a base of power and education agasint a despotic state), and religion, well, they ahve to facilitate it.

    and they did so by going after the less realistic and more gullible of the sexes while denying they were different, so that no one could say this, and prevent it.

    “Women are the creatures of an organized tyranny of men, as the workers are the creatures of an organized tyranny of idlers.” — Eleanor Marx, The Woman Question

    and if your going to say something differnt as to this with me tatyana, be warned, your not going to get there as any cursory glance at certain things will show you who is the most gullible.

    [i also know by your phrasing where you got your education and how one sided it was]

    “Anyone who knows anything of history knows that great social changes are impossible without feminine upheaval. Social progress can be measured exactly by the social position of the fair sex, the ugly ones included.” — Karl Marx

    “All sex, even consensual sex between a married couple, is an act of violence perpetrated against a woman.” — Catharine MacKinnon

    “Feminism is built on believing women’s accounts of sexual use and abuse by men.” — Catharine MacKinnon, Feminism Unmodified, 1987 [and so many of them have been caught lying]

    “[I]f even 10 percent of American women remain full-time homemakers, this will reinforce traditional views of what women ought to do and encourage other women to become full-time homemakers at least while their children are young…. This means that no matter how any individual feminist might feel about child care and housework, the movement as a whole [has] reasons to discourage full-time homemaking.” — Jane J. Mansbridge, Why We Lost the ERA, p.100

    “The care of children infinitely better left to the best trained practitioners of both sexes who have chosen it as a vocation…[This] would further undermine family structure while contributing to the freedom of women.” — Kate Millet, Sexual Politics, 178-179

    “In Millett’s view, a dismantled patriarchy–resulting from the destruction of traditional marriage–would generate the downfall of the nuclear family, a goal she called “revolutionary or utopian.”8 — Patrick F. Fagan, Robert E. Rector, and Lauren R. Noyes, Why Congress Should Ignore Radical Feminist Opposition to Marriage

    “I feel that ‘man-hating’ is an honorable and viable political act, that the oppressed have a right to class-hatred against the class that is oppressing them.” — Robin Morgan

    “We can’t destroy the inequities between men and women until we destroy marriage.” — Robin Morgan (ed), Sisterhood is Powerful, 1970, p.537

    “The simple fact is that every woman must be willing to be identified as a lesbian to be fully
    feminist.” — (National NOW Times, Jan. 1988

    and will leave you with the kind words as to florence nightinggale as she talks about women.

    do note that back then we had a less propagandic view…

    and so the women of the past whould not ahve been so gullible to let such women who didnt represent them redefine their society.

    “Women have no sympathy… And my experience of women is almost as large as Europe. And it is so intimate too. Women crave for being loved, not for loving. They scream at you for sympathy all day long, they are incapable of giving you any in return for they cannot remember your affairs long enough to do so.” — Florence Nightingale

  83. SAB Says:

    What make me happy? Just simple stuff like:
    1. When my kids are nice to each other for real.
    2. A good long shower after mowing in the humidity.
    3. 48 hours without hearing from my ex-husband.
    4. Charles Krauthhammer’s Friday column.
    5. A stack of paid bills on time.
    6. A stack of clean laundry.
    7. No one harrassing me about sex/money.
    9. The rare burst of creativity/energy/hope etc.
    10. Fresh popcorn at the movies.

  84. FredHjr Says:


    My wife is a combination of both traditional and modern ideas and when I first met her I knew right away she was a very good person. There was nothing manipulative about her. The real deal. I got lucky. I really did. I actually was not looking for a mate when I met her – I was a grad student at Boston College and my life was just in so much transition from the Jesuits into the life after the seminary. Nevertheless, I did notice in college and beyond that all to often too many girls are attracted to bad boys. Some of those gals are genuinely bad girls too. In fact, in life I’ve noticed that generally bad people are NOT attracted to good people. Sometimes good people are fooled by bad people, but eventually they figure it out.

    In life most of the damage done to people out there is done by a minority of bad people. Male and female, it does not matter. The damage they do is simply awesome.

    General observation (but not a universal): I think most people are bad judges of character. Not because they are inherently flawed or unintelligent, but because they are too hasty in sizing people up. First impressions may not be the right way to go. That’s why I’m cautious that way. We all make mistakes. Sometimes we think a person is a jerk, when later on we find out that they are actually quite good people and you may have seen him or her in a stressed or bad moment. And the reverse is true also.

    All of us are mysteries until we honestly reveal ourselves. Not everyone is capable of being honest that way.

  85. Oblio Says:

    The mirror is pitiless, Fred. It is easier far to blame someone else for one’s troubles.

    Art, you need to put the brakes on. Some interesting perspectives, but not put into a form that could be persuasive. Yet you are one of the few who would probably see the mathematical structures underlying the complexity of social behavior.

  86. Foxfier Says:


  87. Oblio Says:

    I don’t know, Foxfier. Mrs. Oblio loves Chuck and likes NUMB3RS, and Whiskey says those are “guy fantasy shows.” Should I be worried? Or grateful?

  88. Foxfier Says:

    Try the very last comment in the thread.

  89. Foxfier Says:

    FWIW, I like the Japanese Anime “Harem Fantasy” setups– one guy, usually innocent and abused, and the girls who love him; one that’s clearly perfect, and a bunch more that are just fun.

  90. Oblio Says:

    Nice link, Foxfier.

  91. Artfldgr Says:

    Why do my son’s books tell him all men are useless?

    maybe its because THESE women now rule the world through the power given them by common women who feel powerless when they tell them they are powerless and that they will do the work for them.

    “The male is a domestic animal which, if treated with firmness…can be trained to do most things.” — Jilly Cooper, SCUM (Society For Cutting Up Men, started by Valerie Solanas)

    “If life is to survive on this planet, there must be a decontamination of the Earth. I think this will be accompanied by an evolutionary process that will result in a drastic reduction of the population of males.” — Mary Daly, former Professor at Boston College, 2001

    “For one of the implicit, if unadmitted, tenets of feminism has been a fundamental disrespect for men.” — Wendy Dennis

    “I want to see a man beaten to a bloody pulp with a high-heel shoved in his mouth, like an apple in the mouth of a pig.” — Andrea Dworkin, Ice and Fire, (Weidenfeld & Nicholson, 1987)

    “My feelings about men are the result of my experience. I have little sympathy for them. Like a Jew just released from Dachau, I watch the handsome young Nazi soldier fall writhing to the ground with a bullet in his stomach and I look briefly and walk on. I don’t even need to shrug. I simply don’t care. What he was, as a person, I mean, what his shames and yearnings were, simply don’t matter.” — Marilyn French; The Women’s Room

    “All men are rapists and that’s all they are” — Marilyn French, Authoress; (later, advisoress to Al Gore’s Presidential Campaign.)

    “The proportion of men must be reduced to and maintained at approximately 10% of the human race.” — Sally Miller Gearhart, The Future – If There Is One – Is Female

    maybe this is why women are unhappy?
    they are listening to women above regale their story of how ugly marraige is.

    any one notice how their stories are the stories of women who were lesbians who chose to get married rather than be alone? that their stories often parallel what a lesbian married to a heterosexual man feels hiding and pretending she is heterosexual? would that be the view that a woman who likes men would have?

    maybe thats why women are not happy. as a mass they are not represented well by a fringe whoe believe everyone is like them.

    “Destroy the family, you destroy the country.” — V.I. Lenin

  92. Artfldgr Says:

    thank you fredhjr and oblio…

  93. Artfldgr Says:

    Nussbaum’s official bio says that she has been active for four decades in the organized labor movement, including at the Service Employees International Union and the AFL-CIO. But another document available on the Internet and entitled, “Voices of Feminism Oral History Project,” includes extremely damaging information about Nussbaum’s involvement in pro-communist and anti-American groups. In the document, which is said to be based on an interview Nussbaum gave in December 2003, Nussbaum talks not only about her participation in the Venceremos Brigades to Cuba but her support for the Black Panthers, a militant black power group that attacked the police.

    Voices of Feminism Oral History Project
    Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College
    Northampton, MA

    Nussbaum founded the organization, 9 to 5: The National Association of Women Office Workers, which led to Jane Fonda, also known as “Hanoi Jane” because of her support of the Communist Vietnamese, making the film “9 to 5.” [so I guess it turns out that hollyweird DOES produce propaganda to further communist goals, no?]

  94. Artfldgr Says:

    left out the link for the quotes that show the article, sorry

    A top official of the AFL-CIO is stonewalling questions about her participation in an illegal 1970 trip to Communist Cuba organized by Weather Underground terrorist Bernardine Dohrn.
    Karen Nussbaum, the executive director of Working America, the community affiliate of the AFL-CIO, was asked about her visit to Cuba after speaking at a panel at a “progressive” public policy conference in Washington, D.C. on Monday. Nussbaum was apparently stunned by the fact that someone had uncovered an aspect of her background that has been carefully omitted from her official biography. She refused to answer and walked away. Obviously embarrassed, she also pretended that she didn’t hear the follow-up questions about her trip as a young radical to the communist-controlled island.
    But according to one account of her trip, she declared that she “learned about revolution in Cuba” and praised Castro for providing “free health and educational care to every person in society…” She also declared, “I was part of the Black Panther Support Committee” and said she was a member of the “Draft resistance movement” opposing the Vietnam War.

  95. Artfldgr Says:

    and this is a classic example from todays news

    listen carefully as the news person is so used to demonizing men that in the start of the video, she reverses what happens and says a father kills the daughter.

    “a father killed his daugher is in custody right now”, is what she says.

    truth… daughter kills father for dinner roll

    while such heinious acts happened in the past, they did not happen with clockwork regularity as if the population was showng some form of mental desease from having a life imposed on them while they are told otherwise.

    by the way.. another game they play is that they lump stepfathers (the most likely to abuse), with fathers (the least likely to abuse, and the most protective of children from his mate)..

    I am looking for the video that a news group did for a study in a nj park. they had a woman abusing a man and wanted to film what passerbys did. it took them several days of filiming before someone actually helped the man (a group of several women). but the video of the people passing by is telling.

    here it is!!!

    the point here is to show you how far its gone, how far its been normalized, and how the ONLY answer given the violent women and their left liberal way of debate and character assasination, is to bow out and let the culture disappear through eugenics through social engineering rather than overt force.

    watch it… and see why the men are happier. its taken them 30 years to figure out they cant win, so now they dont play the game anywhere near the way they did in the past.

    and there is no way to referse it unless you can think of how to change these womens attitudes to love and family things. with western peoples below 1.6 in birth, and augmented or hiding the rate by immigration… we have self exterminated through being convinced that these are the best cultural things to do.

    please go to the link to see the video, its a real eye opener!!!!

    Turning the Tables
    How Do People React When There’s Abuse in Public, But the Gender Roles are Reversed? How Would You React?

    It’s the kind of sweaty summer day when you might expect tempers to be short. Even so, though, the scene on a park bench in northern New Jersey strikes bystanders as a bit odd. A young woman with fiery red hair leans over her hapless boyfriend, screaming in his face.

    On previous shows, “Primetime” has staged scenes of abuse in which the man is the aggressor, and the woman is the victim. And in these situations, passersby — men and women — often stepped up and intervened. So producers were curious. What would happen if the tables were turned, and the man was suddenly the victim? Would people be just as willing to come to his defense?

    This staged scenario happens more often in real life than you may think. According to Colgate University psychology professor Carrie Keating, women abusing, even assaulting their male partners “is a big problem in this country.”

    i have a nursing text book that shows that ALL abuse is male to everyone else, and none the otehr way!!!

    i saw a girl this morning hit a man on a subway with the pointy part of an umbrella.

    i have seen them cold cock men hitting them while passing knowing there isnt anything a decent man can do and not lose (they are begging for an altercation they can escalate)

    i have been assaulted by womem kicking, elbowing, and hitting people to move them to get onto a train too crowded to hold them

    its not normal at this rate or level…

    and the guys have bailed… look on the train and the number of foreign marraiges has more than doubles in the past decade!!!

    “There are some data that suggest that women actually hit more than men do,” says Keating. “Men create more damage, but women hit more than men do.”

    A report prepared for the Centers for Disease Control estimates that each year there are over 800,000 serious cases of men being physically abused by women. But the actual figures are believed to be much higher, since many men are often too embarrassed to admit being the victim of abuse by a woman.

    Verbal and physical abuse of men by women might be an acknowledged problem, but will people try to stop it when “Primetime”‘s hidden cameras are rolling?

    One after another, passersby witnessed the abusive scene… and kept right on going.

    [edited for length by neo-neocon]

  96. adagny Says:

    Just to venture a guess of my own.

    The women’s lib movement zenithed in the 70’s. The struggles of the previous generations had, for the most part, been realized. Up to that point women were able to derive satisfaction in their lives from focusing on, and achieving equality in increments.

    Since then, the reality of liberation has set in. Women became responsible for their own liberated choices in life, and their own happiness. For most rational feminists, no longer could everything unpleasant in their lives be blamed on the patriarchy. (I know that there are still scab picking whiners that make up modern day feminism.)

    The point is that women in the 70’s had just achieved so-called liberation and were feeling their power, and rightfully so.

    Extend this theory now to black women, who were never really a big part of the women’s lib movement in the 70’s.

    The black civil rights movement reached it’s zenith in the 60’s but blacks weren’t truly empowered at that time. Civil rights for blacks has been a slowly evolving phenomenon but has only recently, (with the election of Obama), reached the point of empowerment. Blacks, especially black women, have accepted personal responsibility for their lives, and they are feeling it, like their white sisters were in the 70’s.

    The difference is that black women came from such a disadvantaged place that the reality of liberation for them, unlike the liberation of the mostly upper middle class white women in the 70’s, gives them lives that were undreamed of prior to the civil rights movement.

    I say, right on.

  97. Artfldgr Says:

    another example…

    Sadistic Cat Killer Strikes Again

    now tinkbell twisted the head off her cat and skinned it and made a purse out of it.

    in this case, no one knows who is doing this. but when you read the article, they sure know its a man.

    “He ‘s just going around mutilating these poor little animals, maybe that should happen to him,” “He’s a very sick person and this is how they start out, torturing animals and mutilating animals and then they move up to humans, so he needs to be caught because he really is sick.”

    contrasted with

    Katinka Simonse – artist name: Tinkerbell – has always tried to shock people. In 2007, she rescued 61 chicks from a factory farm and threatened to dump them all in a shredder unless her audience adopted them. She put a hundred hamsters in transparant plastic balls and had them run around a gallery during a 2008 exhibit. But her most notorious project to date was ‘My dearest cat Pinkeltje’ in 2004: Tinkerbell personally twisted her pet’s neck and skinned it with her own hands to make it into a purse.

    ah… in the near future Mr Ng, and her will do a slow skinning of a human being to music as performance art…

    so much better than swan lake, so much better than classical music, so much better than western canonic literature.

    however, thats how far we have gone.

  98. Artfldgr Says:

    Psychologists at the University of Rochester evaluated survey responses from 147 recent graduates, noting their achievements and their level of happiness over a period of two years. People’s goals were divided into two categories: extrinsic (things like wealth, fame and personal image) and intrinsic (for example, meaningful relationships, health and personal growth). Achieving intrinsic goals led to higher self-esteem and a greater sense of well-being, the researchers statistical analysis revealed. But, in a snub for the American dream, attaining the extrinsic goals of wealth and fame led to anxiety and unhappiness.

    what crappy studies like thius marxist one do is completely separate what is not separable.

    the idiots dont realize that extrinsics are means to intrinsic goals.

    so no… money dont make you happy any more than a screwdriver does.

    if you take the money thing, and you look at their intrinisic things that make you happier, you will find that having money insures that those goals are maximized

    intrinsic (for example, meaningful relationships, health and personal growth).

    if you are indigent, you dont have meaningful relationships as you do when you are richer. and the relationships of the wealthy are more meaningful because they are less about situations in common and more about uncommon experiences and ideas.

    same with health… while money cant buy good health money can maintain your health at what optimum your body does allow. that is a personal trainer, health chef, and so forth can optimize your health to what your genetics allows.

    and the opportunities for personal growth and such are much more vast when you have the money to persue them.

    so this is how a false argument is created by creating a false division and a few other tricks.

    the point being that the science was purposed to trick the underclasses into not competing and succeeding in merit as a means to happiness.

    like the wealthy woman said

    those who say money cant buy happiness havent got money.

  99. Artfldgr Says:

    your right. before that progress the bastardy rate wasnt 70% like now. they werent in jail as a right of passage. they thought that they would belong in america as part of america, and didnt have made up culture. kids had one father. you had heroes like GW Carver, rather than flava flav. they dressed like everyone else and talked like everyone else so they were more employable. they had not learned to equate modern living as white culture and shun it thereby creating their lot in life.

    yeah.. a lot of liberating things here…

    i dont see the average african american woman around me doing all that well. she did better in the past than she does now. now she is oddly named baby factory for a group of thug culture wannabees, and all kinds of stamp mold types like literature caracters.

    heck most dont even know that the music they like is the poetry of a black national socialist by the name of H Rap Brown. who converted to islam by the way. check out who the shakurs were and the lineage.

    so, no…

    none of us have really done better than when we peaked in the 1950s… least of all the africans.

    no one, especially me is talking about the bad laws that are violations of mans conscience and such. i am referring to the solutions that ended up destroying all they had.

    before equalizing programs, blacks owned businesses. they had vibrant communities. there were doctors, and researchers… lawyers that served the communities.

    after those new fixes. and the culture peddlers. and mostly blacks preying on blacks to get personal power and screwing the community because their power comes from a community in pain!!!

    there wasnt much… once the people they voted for who were using them had their clutches, and once they thought others outside who were not black could never want to really help them. there was no way things were going to improve ever…

    not because white man kept him there, but because other black men sold them out (as black tribes sold out others to slavers) and kept them there!!! and each time others wanted to fix the problems and thereby negate the power of these modern slave gaherers, things were spun and good was bad and bad was good, and there was no way again.

    if things got better for them, they would not need saviors. if they didnt blindly trust race and religion, they wouldnt have hucksters keepign them as worms on a hook to create lifetime employment.

    until many see that their socialism enables this misery power exchange over things that the state really has no power over, then this is how our future lives will be for all of us. because we have gotten to the point already where the more miserable we are the more power they have, which is an inversion to the more miserable we are, the more we should throw the bums out.

    submissive nihilists become those who seek meaning in masochism.

    the liberals are mental flagilists.

  100. Artfldgr Says:

    Feminist delusions

    One of these days, women really ought to make up their minds about what it is exactly they want. Then they could do us all a big favour by stating, unequivocally, what they have decided it is they want. And then they could cover themselves with glory by sticking to what they say. In other words, it’s about time women – especially their self-appointed mouthpieces – started behaving like fully grown-up adults and citizens. Or is that asking too much? Apparently, it is.

  101. Artfldgr Says:

    Teri Pittman,

    i am so sorry to hear that you got suckered. i want a family but with ny giving 350k apartments to the homeless we cant afford a child in my tiny apartment.

    as i said, the whole thing was a eugenics thing and lesbian thing… and they HATED heterosexual women who would be with men… they literally wanted them not to have families, be barren.

    these women were tricked to prune their family trees and fight for the legal prhibitions to keep men frmo saving them and us from themselves.

    go to some of the more recent posts and you will see the damage that is done.

    and this is done by organzied feminsim… a organization women never needed cause as so many here point out. no one was really against the points, they were against mass exodus and all at once change.

    i love steak… but if i have to eat a pound of it in 5 mins and someone else is shoveling faster than i can eat… well, i would then hate what i loved too.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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