Around the Web: Harvest moon over Uranus

Why? Because it’s Friday. My workweek this week happens to start (and hopefully not also end) on Saturday, a circumstance that would totally blow the minds of drive-time radio hosts across the land. Nevertheless, for everybody else, it’s Friday, one of the great days of Lenten fasting at the opposite time of the year, or so we’re instructed, but statistically a day to puke in gutters from Manayunk to the Gaslamp Quarter just like we did last week. Let’s get vulgar.

1. Books are good. Books are edifying. Books encourage us to slow down, focus, develop an attention span longer than that inculcated by lolcat videos, hone our intellects, and increase our funds of knowledge. Books like Boris the Shitting Buffalo.

The same author also maintains a blog, and Good Lord of the High Plains Hunt, the man is shrill. By his reckoning, picking crops commercially apparently isn’t enough to offset the great deficit of manliness that I incur by not being totally head-up about gubbyment taking my money to give food stamps to freeloaders, like the freeloaders who worked alongside me in a bee-infested blueberry patch earlier this month. I and my SNAP-addled colleagues all failed Aaron Clarey’s great manosphere political shit test, although it probably stood to reason for the two women in our group.

As it happens, I heard about Clarey through:

2. Roosh, a STEM dropout who makes a living, or pretends to make a living, by writing about his sex life, or maybe his imagined sex life, crowd-sourcing the sexual attractiveness of random women by posting their photographs on Twitter, deploying sexual slurs against ideological adversaries, and defending crashing long-term at his dad’s place when he isn’t traveling the world bedding its hotties.

A couple of fine self-serious chaps, I say.

3. More proof that any attempt to describe Charles Carreon will fall short of the glory of Charles Carreon:

In a 30-minute phone interview with Ars on Wednesday, Carreon lamented that, as a result of this entire sordid affair, his professional reputation has been damaged—or as he calls it, “rapeutated.” In fact, Carreon has a colorful website at that includes an elaborate chart with a new, long, and extensive list of all the so-called “rapeutationists,” including yours truly and two more Ars staffers. If you’d like to see a picture of Carreon’s critics—including an Ars Technica writer—spewing fecal matter out of their mouths, that too can be accommodated.

Quoth the avowed Buddhist:

“It’s an insoluble problem,” he continued. “It’s is not remediable. As long as you keep punching ‘Charles Carreon’ into Google, there’s just more stories about this nonsense. How can anyone get their message through? I’ve written hundreds of works. You can’t find them. Is that helpful? No. Now it’s difficult for prospective clients to see that I’m a relatively erudite person. Since then, some Amazon reviews of my books have, in bad faith, been given one star—I don’t sell many books anymore. Now it’s highly unlikely that anyone would say that Charles Carreon is a pretty bright guy.”

In the third person, no less. Carreon’s Buddhism isn’t compelling him to let go of his desires by making a concerted effort to pay the judgment already secured against him by his rapeutationists, but realize that he’s from Arizona (because, pursuant to his poetry, you don’t mess with the man from Tucson) by way of Ashland, Oregon, a city whose religious syncretism has never been the self-effacing kind. (Don’t ask me for details. I’ll be up all night if you do.)

4. Quick! Find the most efficient way to aggregate all manosphere tropes in a single essay!

4A. Miley Cyrus as symptom and cause of third-wave feminism.

Alternate explanation: Miley Cyrus, daughter of Billy Ray “Achy Breaky Heart” Cyrus, as vector of second-generation suck.

4B. Our boy Roosh again, in his capacity as patron of the preceding Return of Kings doubleheader:

Women and homosexuals are prohibited from commenting here. They will be immediately banned.

Oh yeah, a no homo manstuff pledge. This guy is as manly as Ted Haggard. And if his demeanor is any indication, he would have us believe that kings, he being among them, are effete, condescending, endlessly intoning about stupid hobbyhorses, and hyperlecherous misogynists.

Come to think of it, it’s served the Kennedy family well enough. God save the King from his flying, driving and skiing habits, or not.

5 thoughts on “Around the Web: Harvest moon over Uranus

  1. No homos? I wonder if Roosh would make an exception for “androphile” gays like Jack Donovan. Check out his site if you want some lulz sometime. The whole androphila schtick is pretty much “We’re manly gays, not like all those other effete feminine fags (and women)! Please accept us into your clubhouse, manly men! ;_;”

    Still, I can at least give Return of Kings credit for posting decent articles on self-improvement or physical fitness every once in a while. They are capable of at least occasionally talking about things aside from how eeeeevil women are and/or how Western Civilization will collapse next Tuesday. That’s more than you can say for all too many circle-jerks of losers in the manosphere.

    • If I recall correctly, I’ve seen women get a word or two in edgewise on RoK comment threads from time to time, usually followed by accusations of being trolls, cunts, and whatnot. My sense is that the real purposes of Roosh’s bans on women and gays are troll abatement and the maintenance of an ideological echo chamber. I have no problem with the former, but the latter I consider bad-faith and nefarious.

      Echo chamber censorship is a huge problem in the manosphere. You’re absolutely right about the circle jerks. Chateau Heartiste, for example, has shitcanned comments of mine that were completely topical and well within the bounds of its very licentious community standards. For all their loud talk about real men being up for a rough-and-tumble argument, some of these guys really like to deep-six counterpoints that they can’t readily spin to their own liking.

      In a similar vein, there was a big donnybrook in one of the CH comment threads a while back over a guy (consensus butthurt beta) who had pissed off his ostensible “bros” by sending out a mass e-mail to read one of his knuckleheads the Riot Act over an outbreak of sexual drama. I was the only one in that thread who wasn’t crying out “beta!” and flipping his shit over the e-mail writer’s transgressions of ex post facto “bro code” laws.

      This was because I had been in practically the same position on a couple of occasions with an out-of-control dark triad alpha schmuck whom I was only able to bring to heel via Facebook or e-mail. By his own unbidden admission, this guy spent five years hazing me, but I was able to reduce him to tears by laying out my case in writing with no ambiguity. The alpha targets of that kind of correspondence want everyone to think that they condescend to their correspondents as much as ever for being socially inept beta losers, but in fact they lash out because they’re scared shitless when the tables are turned. They’re late-stage Beria, Ceaucescu and Qaddafi writ small.

      It takes a lot of censorship and propaganda to cover up or spin situations like those. Often, it’s enough to turn the manosphere into a quagmire.

      I’m actually pretty impressed with much of the political writing on RoK. Roosh and his contributors are a lot more civilized and sane than Heartiste, Vox/Alpha Game Plan, Sunshine Mary, etc. It’s barely possible to catalog the nuttery and anger of some of these people. Probably the best self-help advice I’ve found on the manosphere is from Mark Manson, who is on the manosphere fringe; in other words, normal.

      With respect to the gay androphiles, I think they’d give Roosh the willies. He seems to get really prissy and controlling about the kinds of people that are seen associating with him. The androphiles might want to cast their lot with him; for one thing, he has a hugely more forthright and intellectually honest communication style than has become prevalent in the mainstream gay activist community in recent decades; but I doubt Roosh would reciprocate their interest. I think he’d have a psychosexual freakout. Of all the manosphere writers I’ve followed, he’s probably the single touchiest about teh ghey. He can get pretty passive-aggressive about it.

      Generally speaking, the manosphere probably isn’t a very sensible refuge for gays who are disaffected with the mainstream gay activist agenda. It’s a different kind of bullshit, but it’s still thick. I wouldn’t consider it a great improvement to jump out of the dim sum steamer and into the charcoal sausage grill.

    • In a nutshell, it’s the part of the blogosphere where the all the angry sexist dudes congregate and amplify each other.

      Beyond that, it’s hard to know where to begin in defining the manosphere. As you said, it’s strange. I’ve rooted around in it quite a bit, sometimes sucked in against my better judgment, and I can’t really get my head around it. For one thing, some of its subcultures, e.g., men’s rights advocates and pickup artists, are rabbit holes in their own right. For another, the prevailing jargon is some of the densest and most acronym-laden I’ve ever seen anywhere. On some of these sites, any novice reader will spend the first few hours chasing down missing antecedents. And some of the concepts are totally nuts and pompous. One of the more ridiculous ones is “DHV,” short for “demonstrating higher value,” a pickup concept that amounts to a schmuck preening in front of a chick to show her how superior he is to her.

      Apparently a lot of guys take this stuff VERY seriously and swear that it will help them get girls. The PUA community looks like little more than a handful of socially astute asshats abetting undersexed dweebs in the manipulation of bar skanks. It’s an idiot wind for the followers. For the leaders, it’s lucrative (if they’re lucky) and emotionally satisfying, since they’re bottomfeeders who operate on the assumption that they’ll easily navigate any social destabilization that they create.

      With very few exceptions, manosphere outlets have a number of ugly commonalities. I’ve been able to identify several:

      –Extreme right-wing politics, both social and economic;
      –Overt racism;
      –Antipathy towards sex workers and their clients (Roosh is a rare dissident in arguing that men shouldn’t let worries about their “game” stop them from hiring prostitutes; most others regard it as cheating);
      –Anger and resentment at scapegoated collectives, usually including women, sexual minorities, liberals, racial minorities, “beta” men, Muslims, and the poor, often conflated with one another in ways that are cynical to thoroughly paranoid.

      I’ve said it elsewhere, and I’ll say it here: I have NEVER seen this kind of garbage on sex workers’ blogs. For that matter, many sex workers’ blogs aren’t nearly as lurid and drippy as the manosphere mainstream. It’s probably precisely because their proprietors fuck for a living that they aren’t constantly unleashing a gusher of giggity-goo on their audiences. When hookers do get raunchy online and pump their fists about recent scores, it’s never by way of bragging that they totally just manipulated the shit out of some devious bastard. Bragging about gaming hos is a manosphere staple.

      A lot of the stuff on the manosphere is the kind of stuff a famine victim might write about food. C. S. Lewis looks down with a knowing smirk. I assume that some manosphere publishers are savvy enough to recognize that a readership sexually satiated by hookers is a readership alienated by their over-the-top misogyny. Dissing working girls is certainly a good business strategy for them.

      I believe that a large swath of the manosphere amounts to a protofascist vanguard. These blogs are authoritarian, highly disciplined and organized, and gunning for vengeance on multiple scapegoated minorities. As a literary phenomenon, they may be merely a curiosity, but if they effect real change in the real world, things could get grisly in a hurry.

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