The Case Against Female Self-Esteem, Part II

I recently received an email from reader and occasional commenter captainahags titled “Please take this idiot apart!” The post in question is by Matt Forney, a self-published “entrepreneur” who seems to have taken bragging “pick-up artists” seriously when they said there was money in all those poor, lonely guys on the internet. So last year he started up a blog to test the idea that you can publish any old crap, call it “game”, and make money. He’s already put out a “best of” book.

The post in question is a perfect example of “any old crap”. It’s whiny, contradictory, and backed up by fuck all. But here. Rather that tell you about it, let’s show you what flies in PUA land–with commentary, because it wasn’t the post that sent captainahags to me as much as the fact that Forney doesn’t allow critical comments on his blog.

Yesterday’s post covered the long-winded, poorly asserted introduction to Forney’s post. Now, on to his “reasons”.

1. Most girls have done nothing to deserve self-esteem.

In the world of men, respect—and by extension self-esteem—is based on actually achieving something of worth or having some kind of skill or talent. Are you a bodybuilder or jacked? Men and women will respect you because the effort to mold your body like that requires an enormous amount of work and dedication.

Just like Donald Trump.

I’m sorely tempted to leave the issue there, but I’m afraid Forney will require this to be spelled out for him. Donald Trump is a famous failure. His one talent is for self-promotion. It doesn’t matter to him that his projects have failed and cost other people ridiculous amounts of money. What matters to him, is that he can talk one more person into letting him put his name on a building. Or a terrible TV show. Or a campaign to get him to campaign for political office–which he’ll never do. He’s nothing but a braggart.

And, like males of certain other species, this works for him.

Close-up of a male peacock in full display.
Much prettier than a bad toupee, and just as attention-grabbing.


We pay people respect for how they look, not what they do. We didn’t care that Lance Armstrong was doping. We cared that he was winning, even though it wasn’t his talent that won. Unless you’re really into competitive cycling, you don’t remember the names of the people he beat. You certainly don’t know the names of any who weren’t doping, because they didn’t make it to the events that are televised. We don’t see them.

We can’t tell whether that showy peacock is demonstrating that he’s a good provider, or whether his glossy plumage comes from stealing cat food. We can’t tell when we look at them whether those “jacked” people are on steroids or stimulants for weight loss. In fact, the very word “jacked” not only means to be artificially propped up; it comes from a middle English word denoting someone who is less respected than the person using the term. Bad example, dude. Achieve better.

Being a talented musician, an experienced world traveler, a high-earning tradesman; these and more engender respect from your fellow man and self-esteem along with it.

High-earning tradesmen–yeah, they are always so respected. That’s why nobody complains about how much it costs to get a plumber in for a quick fix or about how unions are screwing us all and sending the country to perdition. For that matter, the skill and talent required to master a trade engender so much respect, we don’t ever need any unions ever. People have such respect for these tradespeople that they just pay them living wages out of awe.

I’ll just pick one of the many exceptionally talented musicians I know. His name is Josef Kessler. He can play pretty much any style of violin music you’d care to name. He was a prodigy and has spent years training. However, he, like so many of the other talented musicians I know, finds his particular joy in preserving and spreading folk music. That’s why, despite his national tours with names you’ve definitely heard of, he’s teaching music and playing with a bunch of groups I’ve never heard of.

We don’t respect talent and skill. We respect showiness, though perhaps not the showiness of “an experienced world traveler” who managed to pack all that massive experience into 90 self-published pages.

No one respects a fat video game-playing kid who lives in his parents’ basement, and why should they?

Probably because he’s kicking Forney’s ass at those video games, but I guess talent and skill count for a lot less when they’re aimed at you, huh?

There’s absolutely no skill or work involved in pissing away your life eating Doritos and jacking off into a tube sock.

Forney’s utter lack of imagination is showing. Not everyone had the same childhood he did.

Women claim they want equal rights as men, but they don’t want equal responsibilities.

These, of course, Forney declines to name, even in a link.

As such, they demand respect not based on their merit as people, but for merely continuing to breathe. Most girls’ so-called achievements, the ones they take pride in, are complete jokes. Wow, you have a master’s degree in puppetry?

Most girls have a degree in puppetry? Well, no. Not only do girls generally not have any college degrees, but women don’t either. They are, however, capable of Googling to find out that “UConn is one of only three universities in the country that offer a bachelor’s degree in puppetry, and the only one that offers a master’s degree.” Forney is apparently not even this capable. Nor is he apparently capable of remembering the near-universal respect puppeteers receive when they’re men like Jim or Brian Henson or Frank Oz.

In a world where everyone and their mother has a college degree—and where college curriculums have been dumbed down to the point of inanity—being able to squeak through an institution of higher learning is no great achievement.

I don’t know whether Forney went to college, but I did. It helps me sort through questions like “Is 31% of the U.S. population ‘everyone and their mother?'” For Forney’s sake, I’ll specify: The answer is no. It also helps me understand that when women are receiving the majority of biology and medical degrees–at every level–we’re not going to pin this one on “dumbing down”. Puppetry this is not.

If anything, having a college degree is a strike against a girl—unless it’s in something real like a STEM discipline—as it shows that she’s a conformist who thinks that credentials are a substitute for knowledge and experience.

Actually, it shows that she’s aware, at least in a general way, that U.S. society requires her to have more educational attainment than a man in order to make the same amount of money. I mean, really, who is she going to rely on? Some guy who publishes his own 90-page books and hopes enough other guys are dumb enough to buy them?

The same goes for having a job. The vast majority of girls work useless fluff jobs: government bureaucrats, human resources and various other makework positions that exist to give them the illusion of independence.

Here Forney is absolutely correct. I believe it was the much-lauded Alan Greenspan who said it was critical to the U.S. economy that women have an illusion of independence. No? Maybe it was Paul Krugman then.

Somehow, however, it surprises me not at all that Forney has problems with HR.

The jobs that keep the country running—tradesmen, miners, farmers, policemen, the military—are still overwhelmingly dominated by men. If every girl was fired from her job tomorrow, elementary schools would have to shut down for a couple days, but otherwise life would go on as usual.

If every girl were fired from her job tomorrow, boys would have to start doing more babysitting. Ask parents whether suddenly finding new babysitters would allow life to go on as usual.

While you’re at it, ask those police officers how they’d like to do their job with no support staff. Though it’s not like they need to be dispatched anywhere. They can just intuit where the crime is because they’re manly men. The farmers won’t miss the bureaucrats who send out their subsidies or the miners and tradespeople the bureaucrats who keep safety records.

If every man lost his job tomorrow, the country would collapse.

If every woman lost her job tomorrow–if nearly half of any national workforce, no matter how you split it up, lost their jobs tomorrow–the economy could collapse. 50% unemployment has never been the goal of anyone interested in maintaining society, much less an economy.

Feminists can screech as loud as they want, but they will never change this fundamental reality; men accord respect based on merit, and if girls want to play in our world, they’ll have to obey our rules. Otherwise, they know where the kitchen is. I have more respect for the starving artist couple busking down the street from my house than I do for all the career-driven, Strong, Independent Women™ in the world. Being able to sing and play guitar well is no small achievement, and the buskers are actually providing a useful service to the world.

Oh, goodness, no. We could just change the rules. We have changed the rules, repeatedly. And we’ll keep doing it as long as catfood-eating peacocks like Forney have no better arguments than these to oppose us with.

But maybe there will be something to his second “reason”?

Image credit: “peacock” by Madison Berndt. Some rights reserved.

The Case Against Female Self-Esteem, Part II
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16 thoughts on “The Case Against Female Self-Esteem, Part II

  1. 1

    If every woman in my department lost her job on Monday, the 25 person department would consist of four people, not including any of the supervisors or assistant department manager. The backlog would immediately become impossible to handle.

  2. 2

    Women claim they want equal rights as men, but they don’t want equal responsibilities.

    I hear this all the time. What alternate reality do people live in where all the men are doing back-breaking, hard, real jobs while women are sitting around being lazy? A large part of feminism has been encouraging girls and women to consider more options that we didn’t have before, to work to get into fields where we weren’t allowed before. How is this not responsibility?

  3. 3

    Apparently he doesn’t know any nurses. Or really any medical people at all. Does he really think that his male doctor is going to stay with him in the hospital and hold the basin while he vomits, go get his meds, haul his ass out of the bed and change the sheets for him and make sure he is getting whatever it is he allowed to eat? Not to mention that the caseload of his male doctor has now increased to seriously unmanageable proportions?

  4. 4

    It’s interesting how mining and the military is always these guys’ example. Except that they have a huge problem when the lobbying of groups to include women in the military and in mining succeeds. First, I am dubious that Forney can work in a mine at the drop of a fedora. In any case, there are feminist groups working hard to end the discrimination against women in mining. Yes, a woman who is better trained and more physically capable at mining than a man has less chances to get hired. Reasons range from “it will ruin group cohesion” to “boys will be boys and sexually harass women miners”. And of course, if she gets the job, she has to accept any kind of treatment than men are not subjected to. Because manly men find competition very threatening, I guess.

    I am also skeptical of Forney’s admiration for women who do Important Man Stuff like mining. (Why do so many people in the MRA.PUA intersection sound like they live in the Industrial Age? It’s not like we have a thriving mining economy.)

  5. 5

    Responsibilities? Some people named Forney clearly are too young to remember (and too lazy to find out) that one of the main planks of 2nd wave feminism was about women claiming responsibilities.

    We wanted to take on leases and loans and mortgages with our own signatures – without the need for fathers, husbands, any other man to co-sign or act as guarantor. We wanted our own credit histories. We wanted our own jobs with equal pay to be able to meet the obligations that we wanted to undertake in our own names.

  6. 6

    (Why do so many people in the MRA.PUA intersection sound like they live in the Industrial Age?

    Because these idiots think women didn’t work then and just did their god given duty of fucking their husbands, raising the bairns, and keeping the house clean. No, they did all that and worked for pay, you useless, sexist berks.

  7. 7

    Oh goody, we’re up for another ride on the “STEM is a meritocracy” merry-go-round. ‘scuze me while I pass out from boredom, Matty. *sigh*

  8. 8

    Those are some sour grapes this dude sees women eating. He’s doing everything he can to explain that he isn’t an abysmal failure, he’s just too awesome for an education and career.
    It’s funny to me when people put down human services. We all need them. At some point in this douche nozzle’s life he has relied on professional care givers and he will again. Though, honestly, I don’t think he deserves such a kindness.

  9. 9

    There’s absolutely no skill or work involved in pissing away your life eating Doritos and jacking off into a tube sock.

    That’s probably a bit unintentionally revealing.

  10. 10

    Though the speech is religiously-oriented, his nonsense arguments were well-refuted in 1851:

    So he doesn’t even have the excuse of inexplicably living in the Industrial Era. And really, his idea of women being lazily dependent as an ideal only ever applied to a certain (well-off, white, straight) sort of woman. Women of colour and poor women have always been working as hard and harder than men. And as far as the idea of the kept trophy wife goes, who the hell does he think is the beneficiary of that kind of display, and who set up the system where being able to afford such was possible?

  11. 11

    If half the women at my company lost their jobs tomorrow over 30% of the music sold digitally worldwide would become unavailable. This included engineers, product managers, marketers, retail sales, acquisitions, legal, and executives. In turn stock for companies like Apple and Amazon would see significant drops putting immense pressure on the entertainment and technology sectors.

  12. 13

    @ Happiestsadist (#10)

    Though the speech is religiously-oriented, his nonsense arguments were well-refuted in 1851:

    Aha! But .edu domains mean nothing, because look:
    No, no. Don’t follow that link. Just look at the fact that the link has creationism in it, and assume that it’s a pro-creationist, anti-science source, and then agree that all .edu domains are worthless. Because.

    No, really, I’ve seen this presented as an argument against the validity of a feminism resource on a .edu domain.

  13. 14

    Just a thought, but don’t male-dominated professions like the military have a high incidence of sexual assault and harassment against women? I mean. Shit. I’m very skilled with my hands. I’m strong. I like to do manual labour and move around all day. I volunteer to build houses and I find it to be awesome and fun, and a good way to stay in shape without having to go out of my way to do so. I’d love to do it full time. But a construction job is very much a “boys club” if walking past workers on my days of work is any indication. I’m glad that I can just walk past those guys, but having to work with them? Um… yeah, I’ll pass.

    What an idiot. I can’t even get outraged at this nonsense. It’s just some dude who got shot down too many times by women he thought were pretty and decided that confidence is the problem with women. Um… no, guys like this are the problem with women.

  14. 15

    re: “Most girls have done nothing to merit self esteem”
    You probably are entitled self esteem before you can be expected to get around to creating a financial empire or whatever it is that he thinks merits self esteem. For example, kindergartners need self esteem, even if they may not yet have accomplished feats like learning all their shapes or whatever.

  15. 16

    Hi! I got here from Manboobz.

    “Are you a bodybuilder or jacked? Men and women will respect you because the effort to mold your body like that requires an enormous amount of work and dedication.”

    Yes Forney and what about all the effort (a lot of) women put into their appearance which gives you a boner? What about all that dieting that a lot of women do so that they are thin and therefore give you a boner? Or does that not qualify? Idiot.

    “In a world where everyone and their mother has a college degree—and where college curriculums have been dumbed down to the point of inanity”

    Maybe it’s just me, but comments like this always come across as “ew, they’re letting working class people in now! Don’t they know they should get back to the mine???”

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