The Woman Racket: The New Science Explaining How the Sexes Relate at Work, at Play and in Society
Charlottesville, Va.: Imprint Academic, 2008
Most of my readers would agree that the West’s modern political correctness regarding race and gender is an insult to the intelligence of anyone who has given any thought to human nature and its evolutionary source. So the triumph of the PC ideology needs an explanation. With regards to feminism, Steve Moxon thinks he has an answer. In The Woman Racket, he looks to evolutionary psychology to shed light on our prejudices and documents how they lead to misperceptions about the sexes and how that in turn leads to failed policy.
The Hatred of the Beta Male
First, there was asexual reproduction. One day, mother nature brought two proto-gametes together, and they (how?) ended up mixing. This process gave an advantage to the offspring by diluting replication errors (the majority of mutations are harmful). The two gametes were not exactly the same size and by natural selection eventually became polarized. The larger ones, being less numerous and harder to produce, became the “limiting factor” in reproduction. The proto-sperms, on the other hand, became numerous, competitive with one another for proto-eggs and “cheaper.”
This far-fetched story of the origins of sex explains gender differences. Little boys, like little sperm in abiogenesis, wrestle and compete in sports. As adults, mating with a female that has unfit genes costs less (or did, before the government or at least culture stepped in) than the equivalent mistake would for a female so they are less picky sexually. Eggs are expensive, sperm is cheap. That’s why we’re most horrified when women and children, the most genetically valuable, are killed in war.
The story gets even more interesting than that. For the species to survive, nature still wants those with the best genes to reproduce. Since the male world is where competition is, males have a wider distribution of talents. In numerous traits, the male bell curve has wider tails while females are clustered near the middle. People want the males who are at the bottom, or even the vast majority that aren’t alpha, out of the gene pool, and we have a subconscious contempt for them. Cultural norms enforce this hierarchy. There’s a Saturday Night Live skit where the difference between a man who gets a date and one who gets charged with sexual harassment is looks and charm. The male hierarchy is rigorously enforced by both sexes. This “good of the species (or at least race)” explanation goes further than Dawkins’s more simplistic selfish gene model in explaining why for example humans are so ready to submit to hierarchies even against their interests. The result is that while just about any woman can be sure to find male attention somewhere, there is no such consolation for low-ranking males.
Moxon challenges conventional wisdom that says it is women that are and have been historically disadvantaged. He wonders why men being the only ones allowed to engage in work, which for most of history was much more hellacious than the worst jobs today, is seen as an advantage. And even if being able to work is an advantage, up until the present era it was necessary for one person to stay home to manage the household. This is nature’s division of labor and the basis of primate life. In pre-historic times things were even worse for men. In some groups of hunter-gatherers 50% or more would be killed in violent combat while all women who were healthy enough could expect to survive to adulthood.
To ask whether men or women are “advantaged” is as meaningless as wondering if infants are advantaged relative to their grandparents. The sexes live in different worlds, and each is happier living a life more congruent with its respective nature. Trying to bridge them has been a disaster. In Britain the percentage of women engaged in full-time permanent work is no greater than it was 150 years ago. Moxon provides evidence that this is due to women’s choices rather than discrimination. In fact, in 1996 Riach and Rich sent out similar résumés to employers with only the sex of the applicant being different. ‘Emma’ got four times as many job offers as ‘Phillip.’ Women being less inclined to work is predicted from an evolutionary perspective. Since a woman’s mate value is based on her youth and beauty rather than status, working for any reason beyond getting the bare essentials for life is pointless.
Perception and Reality: Rape and Domestic Violence
There are two chapters in this book at the start of which the author makes extraordinary claims. The reader is eventually shocked to find that the evidence is there. First, false claims of rape are at least as common as the real thing. The Home Office in England investigated rape claims in 1999 and found that 45% were false charges; the woman retracted completely. This is only a low end number of rape charges that are false, since one would have to think that not every woman who lied eventually admitted it. Investigations in the UK, New Zealand, and the US show that police officers with experiences in rape cases believe that 50-80% of claims are false. Compare the media attention given to women who are raped compared to men who are wrongly convicted.
Studies show that the number of rapes in US male prisons dwarfs all cases on the outside. Yet, it’s a joke in our society, and some even see it as criminals getting their just desserts. It’s really a grotesque thing to laugh at, considering the AIDS epidemic in US prisons making a stint of any duration in jail a possible death sentence. Evolutionary psychology tells us why male rape is funny while a person making a joke about female rape is banished from respectable society. A man who rapes a woman is violating the rules of the male hierarchy by gaining a mate that his genes don’t merit, and our nature makes this objectionable to us.
The second shocking claim is that the majority of instances of domestic violence, even the serious stuff, is female on male. Men who aren’t psychopaths have a natural aversion to hitting women, while women have no aversion to hitting men. They can do so knowing that the man won’t hit back and that when the cops come they’ll be the ones believed no matter what. The cultural Marxists and feminists use our natural favoritism towards women to make men into an oppressor class. Reality says that so-called violence towards women isn’t part of some “patriarchy,” but largely a myth.
The War on the Family
Feminists demand “equality” only when it’s convenient for women. They complain about the lack of women CEOs and political leaders but never about the lack of female mechanics or plumbers. Women demand equal pay but after divorce should get 50% of what the man earns. All that aside, the government’s intrusion into family life in the name of feminism has been the greatest disaster of all. Moxon focuses on his native England but the same story could be told of any Western country.
In 2007, former Labor minister for welfare reform Frank Field calculated that a woman with two children working 16 hours a week for minimum wage receives after tax credit as much as she would if she was living with a man and they worked 116 hours a week between them. With these kinds of incentives for reckless and irresponsible behavior it’s not a wonder why the number of out-of-wedlock births in Western societies has multiplied in the last few decades but why most white children still end up in two parent households. Moxon says that human nature can’t be changed, but he’s too optimistic. Harpending and Cochran’s The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution shows us that evolution in civilized societies can happen very quickly. Each generation of Westerners is going to be less intelligent, less responsible, and less moral the longer the welfare state and feminism survive.
Family courts show the same bias against men that the rest of modern political life does. Women initiate 80-90% of divorces (with the financial incentives no doubt playing a part in the decision), but men are assumed to be the guilty party. The latter are responsible for paying child support but have no guarantee of seeing their own children. All of a sudden, equality goes out the window, and men are required to be providers for women who no longer want them. Judges have even ruled that men may be forced to pay for children that aren’t even theirs. In the US a man can at least get a prenuptial agreement, but in England they aren’t even enforceable in court. It bears repeating: after reading The Woman Racket and investigating feminism’s influence on the law and culture the reader won’t wonder why the modern family has been breaking apart but how it even survives at all.
Another White Man’s Disease
Moxon’s theory of women being favored, like many things, makes sense in the Western world but not universally. He says about Middle Eastern culture
The very different experience of Muslim and Hebraic cultures–where social practices are derived primarily from canonical text rather than the codification of biological imperatives–is the exception that proves the rule. Indeed a plausible argument could be made that the ‘patriarchal’ moral and legal codes deriving from the ‘religions of the book’ are an attempt to redress the imbalance revealed by the practice of ‘natural’ societies.
But doesn’t that seem backwards? Wouldn’t we expect that culture and religion would work with a group’s nature instead of “fixing imbalances?” Kevin MacDonald makes the case in his paper “What Makes Western Culture Unique?” that inherent racial differences are reflected in and reinforced by religious and cultural practices. Like with the question of race and IQ, it is more reasonable to assume differences than similarity in the kinds of societies we expect different groups to create. I wonder if Moxon really believes that Afghans or Saudis are inherently just as likely to fall for “The Woman Racket” and adopt society destroying feminism as Swedes are.
Racial differences can also help explain why no group of whites has reacted to incentives for irresponsibility the way black Americans have. In 2007 the black out-of-wedlock birth rate hit an all-time high of 72%. Africans are not only looser sexually but have different ideas about the obligations of men and women. Steve Sailer writes that in the West “feminists complain that men lock women out of the world of work. But in Africa, men have always ceded most of the world of work to women.” We see the same thing with regards to out-of-wedlock birth rate to a lesser extent with America’s growing Latino population. East Asians may have birth rates as low as the West, but you still don’t see Western style feminism or rampant anti-men discrimination. We all share certain qualities going back to the primordial ooze, but different environments have had plenty of time to tweak our differences since then. While there are pluses and minuses to each system, feminism seems to be like racial masochism: a curse that only affects whites.
Moxon may have been smart to avoid the racial issue here. For a mainstream book you have to pick your battles. It’s easier to get people to accept gender differences than it is to accept ones having to do with race. After all, many of us don’t have much contact with other races but we all have at least some experience with the opposite sex. We don’t know what the future holds but what’s certain is that the current system can’t last. With the IQ and productivity of nations falling due to immigration and differential birthrates and the rapid spread of inferior genes due to relaxation of selection and government subsidies the question isn’t if the collapse is coming but how soon.
Originally published at HBD Books, June 3, 2009.