What’s Wrong with the World

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Men's faults, women's faults, and feminism

Provocative statement for discussion: The besetting vice of women is vanity. The besetting vice of men is sensuality. Feminism exacerbates both vices, hence making both men and women maximally unhappy with reality as they find it.

Slightly longer discussion: Women are naturally vain and want to be admired. Contemporary feminism teaches them to want to be admired both for traditionally feminine traits such as beauty and motherliness and for traditionally masculine traits such as professional accomplishment and financial independence and success. Women come to believe that if they are perfect in all possible areas, they will be admired in all these areas, and then they will be happy. Men are naturally sensual and want a physically easy life with their physical desires satisfied with little trouble. Contemporary feminism teaches them that if they have a perfect woman, they can have it all, too. The woman who is perfect in every way will satisfy her husband's physical desires, make sure the kids are taken care of somehow (or make sure there are no kids), and take the financial stress and pressure off of her husband by making plenty of money on her own.

Since reality does not usually work out this way, both men and women raised with feminist ideology find themselves unhappy.


HT to Michael Liccione for an interesting Facebook discussion that prompted these thoughts.

Comments (26)


If you want me to get frustrated again, then you will have to be more provocative than this : )

The most common accusation against the traditional teaching of marriage is that it sets the bar unrealistically high. It's odd that the same accusation might be leveled at the above description of feminism.

I didn't actually think of you as the kind of person who would find it controversial, Brett. I was thinking more of someone who would be annoyed at any general talk of men's or women's besetting sins.

Since reality does not usually work out this way, both men and women raised with feminist ideology find themselves unhappy.

I think you're missing something. Reality, under feminism, does work out this way. Women get their vanity satisfied, men get their sensuality satisfied, and yet ... everyone is miserable. Why?

OK, I'll try to answer my own question. :-)

Perhaps it's because vanity and sensuality, being vices, are never satisfied as such.

Also, there is another side to male and female, and that is the inherent need to be what they were created to be, to do what they were created to do. Feminism frustrates these ends and substitutes nothing but appetite.

So everyone is miserable.

I've known plenty of happy feminists. It's just that you hear the unhappy ones more - the happy ones are too busy living to bother whining.

Contemporary feminism teaches that if a man in a relationship with a woman is happy, he's exploiting her somehow.

As for the sensuality thing, I didn't realize all those adverts for body washes and skin lotions were directed to men.

"I didn't realize all those adverts for body washes and skin lotions were directed to men."

Sex sells. Men buy gifts. That's part of it.

Another part, a far bigger one IMO, is that feminism in combination with the sexual revolution seeks to level the playing field by encouraging women to be sensualists too. Glance at any issue of Cosmo or Redbook and this notion can't be escaped. Rather than seeking to hold men to a higher standard, it lowers the standard for women.

I think Rob G is right. I also think that the trades in makeup, skin lotion, etc., are now *as they have always been* directed to female vanity. I don't think one can get around this, and indeed I think female vanity and female sensuality are closely bound up together. Women want themselves to be beautiful so that they will be desired. There is nothing wrong with this in and of itself, and the extremely crass sex-only feminism on display in "sex weeks" and such on college campuses hasn't been able to change it. Women tend, I think, to transmute those messages into things like the tacit assumption "If I'm willing to have sex more readily, men will like me," and so forth. What is perhaps worth noting is that the lesbian-style masculinizing feminism hasn't really "taken" among American women or, I suspect, among European women either. They want a both-and kind of feminism in which you are beautiful and also chairman of the board. Er, chair of the board? And there are plenty of people willing to imply that they can have that.

Donna makes two errors:

One is the "man-who" fallacy. I've never known a happy feminist, but that's not really an argument at all, and it's certainly not a data point that Donna would find interesting.

Secondly, Lydia's point was not whether feminists --whether the ones Donna knows or the ones everyone else knows--are particularly happy, but whether people in general are happier as things stand today. Basically every measure of happiness, from suicide rates to depression to drug abuse to interpersonal violence to divorce, suggests that they are not.

Sage makes a good point and a good clarification. When I said "men and women raised with feminist ideology" I didn't necessarily mean those who are themselves doctrinaire feminists. I meant more "men and women who have been raised in a world with feminist ideology in the air and who have in various ways, including indirectly, been influenced by this ideology."

I'm not sure you could say there is a "dominant" vice for either sex.

Though I do think there is a dominant weakness, not vice mind you, but weakness. Women tend towards irresponsibility, while men tend towards a reluctance to rein in women's irresponsibility.

The Genesis tale throws light on some of the leading problems of humanity. It needs to be recalled that in the tale, {which isn't meant to be taken as a historical fact} Adam and Eve were thrown out of Eden not for Eve's irresponsibility in the face of the temptations, but for Adam's failure to rein her in, and seek out God's help. It was HIS action that saw everybody and forever banished from Eden.

Look at Macbeth. Who was the main agent in that drama? Wasn't it the wife, who was agitating constantly for more and more power, which she wielded indirectly through her husband. And her cold calculations led to murder, which was then compounded by more murder.

Are men sensual? To be sure, but are they not vain too? Wasn't Caesar vain, what of that Alexander of Macedon, what of Napoleon, ------------ but not just in those men who did evil. What of Nelson's vanity, what of MacArthur and Patton? Who here would suggest that these men who clearly suffered from an overweening vanity were less of a man for that weakness Lydia would suggest is a weakness of women.

And now looking at the female side of the ledger, wasn't Messalina "sensual," what of Mountbatten's wife, who railed one and all, or more recently, what of Obama's own mother, who clearly had a insatiable thirst for jumping third worlders. Wasn't his mother wholly dominated by her lusts, riven through with all manner of pathologies and disorders?

It's difficult to say there is a single dominant vice, rather, I'd say a marked weakness. But that begs the question, could it be that the weakness I and others noted is so profound as to arise to the level of a "vice," in which case Lydia would be correct to suggest a dominant vice, and the only question remaining is to identify which vice is indeed dominant.

Men are naturally sensual and want a physically easy life with their physical desires satisfied with little trouble.

Put that way, feminism doesn't sound so bad.

Contemporary feminism teaches them that if they have a perfect woman, they can have it all, too.

Ahh, the catch.

Women can certainly have it all. The problem is upkeep. That is what the feminists never taught them. They never understood that even with the "ideal husband," the work load from being good parents and high powered professionals would annihilate their work-life balance.

what of Obama's own mother, who clearly had a insatiable thirst for jumping third worlders.

I love sympathetic WWWtW commentators. God speed, young man or woman!

Got your attention didn't it?

Truth, it happens. And when the President constantly invokes the dead shade of his Marxist bureaucrat of a father as the raconteur of choice on all things American, it's wise then to bring in the entirety of his family into the mix, so as to provide proper context.

Does anyone here know of anyone normal, non-islamic, non-radical, who played any part in that man's life, AND LEFT a trace of that somewhere informing his character?

As for sympathy, --------------------- I'm sympathetic, I'm feeling sympathy for those few score third worlders who never enjoyed her condescending attentions?

Millions did receive, but there had to be some left out, and for them, I extend some sympahty. I mean imagine it. There they are, eager to get their hands on a white woman, and one comes along eager to jump entire continents, and somehow they missed their chance.

O the humanity.......

And Mike, there IS something pathological about that woman's behavior. And there was a MORAL component to what she chose to do.

In no particular order, she hated:

1} her father,
2} her skin colour,
3} middle class values,
4} Captialism,
5} the foremost Capitalist power, the United States of America,
6} American foreign policy,
7} American domestic policy, and
8} of course she hated her very given name,
9} and Christianity too she hated, etc....

Now if that's a creature you're eager to extend sympathy too, have at it.

Were she to have acknowledged her moral failures, were she to acknowledge her sins, her rejection of the Natural Law, then when she did that sympathy becomes appropriate, for no one should ever place obstacles in the path of a sinner coming to grace.

But so long as she waged a war against Christianity, the West and the United States, ------------ a one woman war, --------- where every third worlder she jumped was some weird "blow" she delivered to Uncle Sam's solar plexus, in such a situation she needs to be identified accurately.

And in this situation, as just about everything with the Kenyan/Indonesian-in-chief, the truth isn't very pretty.

While Q obviously exagerates (surely, "millions" is inflated by an order of magnitude), I cannot fault his overall assessment.

Though, at the same time, who can fault any woman for hating her given name when that name is "Stanley."

I meant you were sympathetic to or in agreement with the overall tone of this blog, not that you were displaying empathy.

Again, God speed. The world needs more conservatives like you!


What was that family thinking when they named her "Stanley" is beyond me. It's almost as if they were setting that woman on a flight path that would only end in disaster. And then there is the whole Frank Marshall thing thrown in.

That whole world of Obama's is evocative of the movie Rosemary's Baby!

What was that family thinking when they named her "Stanley" is beyond me. It's almost as if they were setting that woman on a flight path that would only end in disaster.

I had a female teacher whose legal name was Johnny. She told us that her parents knew she was a girl, but didn't care and wanted a son. You don't have to be a bleeding heart liberal to believe that certain names for kids really is a form of criminal child abuse.


Across the street from my own nephews existed a little girl named Barry. They have no boys, just two girls, and one of them, the youngest, is named Barry.

Effectively, these families are telling the little girl in question they didn't want you, never wanted you, and are saddened by your existence.

It probably causes all kinds of sexual confusion.

The woman who was the first First Capitan at West Point, an Army brat, {the voting was rigged, I know that for a fact, she only won by manipulation by the administration at the Academy} was an only girl, who clearly was trying to make up to her father for his disappointment in not having had a son.

Which of course begs another question: Do women belong at the service academies? They were only enrolled by the Congressional class immediately following Watergate, {known to Congressional historians as "the Watergate babies"}. Their idea wasn't equality, their idea, which they themselves bragged of at the time, was nothing less than the utter destruction of what is commonly known as "the warrior ethos." Was that an appropriate method for such destruction, IF CONGRESS was empowered to cause such destruction.

And now looking at the female side of the ledger, wasn't Messalina "sensual," what of Mountbatten's wife...

But I thnk the point is women generally would use sensuality as a means to some other end, whereas for men (generally) sensuality is the end, and hence the weakness.

I think the criticism that men also are vain is probably more on the money than the criticism that women also are sensual. ASM correctly gives the answer I would give to the "women also are sensual" point. As for male vanity, I see the point there, but it would be interesting to get some sort of fix on how many men are vain but not (very) sensual and how many men are sensual but not (very) vain. My _suspicion_ is that the latter group would far outnumber the former group.

But Mountbatten's wife and Messalina clearly did see sexual expression as an end in itself, and on occasion, a conduit as towards something else as well.

I freely confess to a vainty.

I'll wear $2,ooo suits. I don't have one tux, I have two, {single breasted and double}. I've half-a-dozen ties just for my tuxes. And even in a room full of men wearing tuxes, my tux and tie gets attention.

If I'm not the best dressed man in the room, I'm one of them. I dress to turn women's heads, and I succeed. Some teenage chick the other day tried to jump me when I was picking up my dry cleaning.

When I speak before any public setting I'll make sure that my words are carefully calibrated to lure listeners in, and my voice constantly modulates. I'm a much better speaker than Obama, for he's a one trick pony, constantly trying to evoke memories of MLK. That act will wear thin soon enough. And for him, he'll have no back-up game.

And of course I'll make sure I don't lose, {and I haven't lost yet}.

I'd say that was more than enough evidence of an unhealthy vainity.


there seems to be this idea afloat that for a man to be sensual, he's expected to have sex with every woman wandering down the block.

Here's a for instance.

Two women came on to me once, and they wanted me both at the same time, they were bi, and they wanted me for a threesome. A little prob though on the road to a memorable evening. The one girl was clearly chubby, and the other, though having a decent build, wasn't very attractive. So I begged off.

Now comes the interesting part. One of my pals got wind of my turning them down and reproached me about it. So I told him their looks just didn't cut it. He replied: "That didn't count, you should have gone through with it for the PRINCIPLE of the thing." As if I was OBLIGED to handle both of them just because the occasion presented itself.

Was I lacking in sensuality because I turned both chicks down?

Had the women in question been Kate Beckinsale and say uh, oh I don't know, say Adriana Lima, then my answer would have been "what are we waiting for?" BUT because both women weren't sexually desirable, wasn't I allowed to turn them down?

Does a guy have to do every chick that walks down the street?

You're convincing me that you are vain. :-)

No, I can well imagine that a man could be highly sensual without being promiscuous. In fact, that sounds quite reasonable. I'm not sure I want to make any comment on your anecdote, but what comes to mind is that I would _think_ that there are guys out there who would be repulsed by the very notion of a "threesome," with anyone. And they could still be the sorts of guys who would want the perfect woman who is beautiful and also supports them so they don't have to work very hard.

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