Douchehound of the Day: Satoshi Kanazawa

I’m a little late to this one, but in case anyone missed evolutionary psychologist (really, need I say more?) Satoshi Kanazawa’s devastating takedown of a certain kind of feminist — to wit, the straw kind — at Psychology Today, let me tell you two things about it.

1) The title is “Why Modern Feminism is Illogical, Unnecessary, and Evil.” NO, REALLY.

2) It contains reasoning like the following:

Another fallacy on which modern feminism is based is that men have more power than women.  Among mammals, the female always has more power than the male, and humans are no exception.  It is true that, in all human societies, men largely control all the money, politics, and prestige.  They do, because they have to, in order to impress women.  Women don’t control these resources, because they don’t have to.  What do women control?  Men.  As I mention in an earlier post, any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.

Setting aside the ridiculousness of that assertion — for practically infinite reasons, including how heterosexist and indeed anti-male it is (“We all think with our dicks! Amirite? NO-CAPACITY-FOR-HIGHER-ORDER-THINKING-IN-PRESENCE-OF-BOOBIES HIGH FIVE!”) — I’ll just point out the obvious.  You say you’re female but not, for whatever reason, someone generally regarded as a “reasonably attractive young woman”? Fuck you!

I shall not fully fisk (though I’ll certainly have things to add in comments) because I’ve got a busy day ahead, and I’m sure you all can do a more thorough job of it anyway. Gina Barreca gets the fun started here, and I trust this thread will be highly entertaining reading by the end of the day. Go to it, Shapelings.

212 thoughts on “Douchehound of the Day: Satoshi Kanazawa

  1. any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.

    Yeah! He has only nuclear weapons, whereas she has BOOBS!

  2. Oh for fuck’s sake.

    Pass the Braino, please. I want to forget every disgusting, sexist, douchehoundy stereotype this goober has come up with.

    In particular, I adore the concept that women FORCED men to take all the money and political power and property and prestige because otherwise we wouldn’t sleep with men.

    Yeah, because having the money and the politics and the prestige itself wouldn’t appeal to ickle ladies. We jus’ want de big, beyootiful peenis to take care of us.

    Puleeze!

    Now pass me my scepter and my moneybags. I can get my own damn prestige.

  3. Also, “biologically meaningful measures of success” have fuck all to do with quality of life, douchebag. I am not a fucking baby factory, thankyouveryfuckingmuch.

    This kind of bullshit getting published makes me curse more than usual.

  4. Uh, that was so stupid that I can’t even come up with a reasonable answer. First off, I think this person is confused about what feminism is. It isn’t about a woman controling men. I believe feminism is about being free of societal norms to be and act a certain way because of her gender, and being treated equally in all areas of life from work to church to the house. Also, having the freedom to make independent choices about her life without having to get permission first or being shamed by her decisions.

    That argument makes me think about the white people who believe black people’s quest for equality means subverting white people. We (well most of us, I think) don’t want to crush, control or enslave white people. We just want to be treated fairly and not based on race.

  5. The fact that we have to be reasonably attractive in order to have power (if you call getting men to try and impress us power, which I don’t) is the part that pisses me off more than any other part of this. Ugly men can have money, and power, but ugly women? Go sit in your fucking corner and cry fatty, we’ll set you up with min. wage at burger king but you’ll never go beyond that because or dicks don’t like you.

    Also, “reasonably attractive YOUNG woman,” I guess once I get older than 25, despite the fact that I’ll be wiser, and better educated, it’s time to throw in the towel.

    Yeah, articles like this totally prove to me that feminism isn’t necessary, you’ve convinced me asshole, I’ll just sit around in a bikini and eat bon bons all day while men cater to my every need, and view men as an object. That’s my personal dream job.

  6. Really, making more money and having more shoes are comparable? Really?

    I love that someone who has no idea about real, actual feminist debates, practice, ideology, or pedagogy thinks he can make an accurate assessment of feminism; you know, since feminism is settled and all.

  7. Are you sure that wasn’t in “Psychology 1862 “(right next to the article on the groundbreaking science of phrenology) instead of Psychology Today?

  8. I’m glad there was a “find a therapist” link to the right of the article. That might help me more usefully channel my Hulk-like rage.

  9. any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.

    Yeah! He has only nuclear weapons, whereas she has BOOBS!

    I don’t know about you, but my vagina has nuclear missiles. Lots of them.

    But in seriousness, who freaking decided that this was worthy of being printed in a major publication? It makes me rather embarrassed to have been a psych major.

  10. Is it so hard for people to get their heads back to square one? Square one is the square where people need to be treated as if they don’t fit in a box you understand before you’ve taken the opportunity to understand them individually. Until then, no boxes…. even for people who think with their box openers.

  11. Also, “biologically meaningful measures of success” have fuck all to do with quality of life, douchebag.

    DUDE I KNOW. Who cares about socially meaningful measures of success. Women live longer! Even if they’re miserable!

  12. Since I’ve been doing a lot of reading recently on the treatment of women in rural Afghanistan, I find this whole sentiment particularly disgusting and offensive. There are still places in the world where, by virtue of being stronger, men may treat women as livestock. Even if men did think entirely with their dicks, a woman can only control such a man with sex if she has the power to refuse it to him.

  13. //DUDE I KNOW. Who cares about socially meaningful measures of success. Women live longer! Even if they’re miserable!//

    Do we actually live longer? Or does it just seem that way when we get another round of the Douchebag Chorus from The Moft Excellent Adventures of Douchey McDouchehound and Hif Moft Impreffive Penif?

  14. how heterosexist and indeed anti-male it is

    I’m so glad you said this especially after the recent shooting at the gym.

    I’ve often had cause to think that men like the killer are the ones that are taken advantage of ruthlessly by this kind of rot, whilst people like Kanazawa sit smugly in their citadel making money out of pulling the strings.

    As usual, it is others, in this case women who have to pay for it.

  15. YES!!! My first thought was how heterosexist/normative this whole load of shit is. Let’s not (or maybe we should) get into the implication that all women use our sexuality to manipulate men. Um, right.

  16. Oh no! She’s revealed the secret mind-controlling power of vaginomancy! Now that the patriarchy is on their guard women will just have to settle for using their brains!

  17. Or does it just seem that way when we get another round of the Douchebag Chorus from The Moft Excellent Adventures of Douchey McDouchehound and Hif Moft Impreffive Penif?

    Twistie, you win the internets.

  18. Just reading through your piece, Kate, and reading these comments is making me sad. I feel like no woman that I’ve met in the real world is a woman that I could discuss these things with. No one wants to be labeled a feminist and it’s because of men and women like Satoshi Kanazawa.

    I’m so glad there are women out there like all of the SP readers and writers, and everytime I get on here, I feel less alone, aware that there are people out there who won’t tell me I’m over-reacting when I get pissed at fat jokes, or when people call me Miss, instead of Ms.

    Thank you so much for this blog, it’s great.

  19. “Do we actually live longer? Or does it just seem that way when we get another round of the Douchebag Chorus from The Moft Excellent Adventures of Douchey McDouchehound and Hif Moft Impreffive Penif?”

    Lol, you know the menz are straight up pissed that we live longer too, it’s not fairrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr . . .

  20. So the basic argument seems to be: Sure, men have economic and political control and a disproportionate amount of power, but it doesn’t count because they’re just doing it to impress women. Honestly, I find the whole thing so ridiculous as to be more laughable then infuriating.

    any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women

    And this doesn’t even make sense. I mean, first of all it’s making no distinction between persuasive and coercive power. Even accepting his flawed premise here, the power a “reasonably attractive young woman” has over any man would be persuasive, while a male ruler has coercive power. I don’t have the resources of the law or the military or the courts to enforce my will, whereas that is exactly what “male rulers” in the sense he is using have.

    But, as my husband pointed out when I sent him the link–and forced him using my magical powers of persuasion to read it!–how much can be expected from “the scientific fundamentalist”?

  21. YES!!! My first thought was how heterosexist/normative this whole load of shit is.

    Well, that’s the thing about evopsych, right? If every single thing we do is rooted in a desire to pass along our genes, then teh homoz simply must not count as real people.

  22. Evolutionary psychology seems mainly Freudian to me. Everything, ultimately, comes down to the male sex drive.

  23. “any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women”

    This is kind of like people in the Middle Ages hating on Jews for being money lenders when it was the only job they let them have. Women could rule the world too, if you fuckers would just open up the fucking guilds!!

  24. This idiotic douchebag asshole is in like every other issue of that magazine. I know because I suffer through it every time I’m at the mechanic’s office.

  25. Yeah, Kate, exactly – I happen to be a heterosexual woman. But I’m not so sure I want kids. So is there something wrong with me for not having a deep rooted desire to pass along my genes? Oh, or maybe I’m just not a real person.

    And then I saw Kanazawa’s byline: “Feminism is the radical notion that women are men.” Bwahahaha – really? Or, you know, not even remotely. It’s awfully hard to write coherently about something you clearly don’t actually understand.

    I am not a post-feminism feminist. I am the third-wave.” – Rebecca Walker

  26. Holy shit. According to this, women have more shoes, live a little longer and can pop out kids; therefore, they have nothing to complain about. Ah yes, and feminists think that women should be men…and this is in *Psychology Today*?!?? Do they realize what they’re lending credence to and how dangerous this is??

    I’m too angry to do much more than splutter for now and so will leave the commentary to wittier souls (thank you, Twistie!), but…damn it. Just damn it.

  27. All this shit, this guy and George Sodini are of the same ilk. They are really really angry at women because it’s against the law to rape us. And we won’t have sex with men if we don’t feel like it! WAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

    Bitches.

  28. My favorite thing about Satoshi Kanazawa? He just luurves Sarah Palin, giving us the lol-worthy statement

    “I am a fan of Sarah Palin’s. I think she has the right charisma to energize the Republican Party and become the Ronald Reagan of the 21 century. I bet, in a couple of years, we will be hearing a lot about the ‘Palin Democrats”

    even AFTER her resignation as governor.

    And yet, he has to disagree with her on one thing: the Letterman controversy, because jokes CANNOT be offensive and because, since 14-year-old girls are INTENDED to procreate, even if he was referring to Willow, it would still be hee-larious.

    I just find every single part of that amusing.

  29. “[M]odern feminism is unnecessary, because its entire raison d’être is the unquestioned assumption that women are and have historically always been worse off than men”

    So it doesn’t matter that we live in a society in which men feel they have the right to grope, harass, rape, and otherwise sexually exploit women? It doesn’t matter that we’ve never had a female president, that women don’t make equal pay for equal work? He’s either an idiot or delusional.

    “[T]he only two […] meaningful measures of welfare [are] longevity and reproductive success”

    These are the only meaningful measures of welfare?! Yeah, who cares about quality of life? Obviously all women are really only worth the space we take up because of our breeding abilities. Asshole.

  30. “[M]odern feminism is unnecessary, because its entire raison d’être is the unquestioned assumption that women are and have historically always been worse off than men”

    So I guess it was a woman who walked into her gym and killed three men (and wounded ten others) in order to express her frustrations with not getting the attention she felt she was owed from men?

    This guy is an asshole through and through.

  31. Psychology Today has a long and dishonorable history of publishing misogynist tripe. They prefer it; hit ‘Gender’ under ‘Topics’ on the menu bar, and you’ll find numerous other recent examples. Or, better yet, don’t. Sometimes it’s not just comments that use up my Sanity Points. But, don’t mistake them for a respectable publication.

    I know I’m doing the Female Power Thing wrong, because I have far fewer shoes than my husband. Although, I do have a pair of bright orange rubber clogs, which ought to count for two.

  32. Oh… dear.

    I was going to read the entire thing and then comment, but I really don’t have the mental energy to dissect such a steaming pile of stupid.

    I will say, though, that I’ve come across the notion – expressed literally, not subliminally – that the only women that count are the attractive ones waaaaay too often in the past coupla days.

  33. Gosh o’ lakes, darlings, this man is more than just a douche-hound, he’s a whole douche-kennel!

    No, no; a pinching speculum full of horse-pucky.

    (clutches pearls and bats eyes)

    You think if we got enough fainting young gorgeous examples of girl together we’d have enough power to get him to shut the fuck up? I know some young femme feminists, and I bet there are a few here!

    If not, immediate douchehound argument fail.

  34. I think this is just part of the Jerry Springerization of all the old media. This was published to get a rise, the way Mimi Roth is put on TV to get a rise. It’s a dying industry poking at sores to get customers.

    This one seemed particularly ham-handed. The arguments are at the level of a high-school term paper. It’s not offensive enough to warrant an advertiser boycott so I’d say the best thing to do is ignore it.

    Except …

    The shootings in PIttsburgh really bring home how messed up some people are about feminism. And with the economy so thoroughly in the toilet, there are a lot of people feeling panicked and angry who have no one to blame (other than the well-protected “rich” and faceless corporations). The increase in racism, immigrant-bashing, and freak-out shootings is a damned good reason for the media to stop this “let’s get everyone all OUTRAGED” game. Let’s get the men angry at women and then the women will get angry at the men! Let’s make the thin angry at the fat, then the fat will get angry at the thin! And everybody will link to us as they battle each other!!!

    This kind of feeding the fire is irresponsible as well as pathetic. I’d be glad to see Psychology Today and anyone else playing this game sink into inevitable oblivion sooner rather than later.

  35. This guy is hilarious. Is he a performance artist? Is this a parody? Is Andy Kaufman behind this?

    For one, he writes like he’s too scared to venture outside of the five-paragraph-essay format at its most rigid. “I’ve just explained that blah blah blah. Now I shall give three reasons why blah blah blah. First… Second… Third… Now I’ve just demonstrated blah blah blah.” Not everyone has to turn out immortal prose – I certainly don’t – but then explain to me why he’s got a blog at Psychology Today? (Actually, an evo-psych explanation, please, since that seems to be the only thing he finds persuasive. I don’t want to hear about his ostensible qualifications; I want to hear how it furthers the survival of the species for a boring and uninformed writer to get this kind of platform.)

    The best, though, is the main page of his blog. Because he has one post — sandwiched between “Laydeez Are Fer Looking At” and “You’re Not The Boss Of Me” (I may be paraphrasing) — where he’s all, “I think there’s an impostor syndrome, and I think it might affect women especially, but… EVO PSYCH CAN’T EXPLAIN IT! How… can… this… be?!”

    Hee hee hee hee hee. Dude, so sorry you won’t be around to see your work become a cautionary tale in two hundred years, and to hear the laughter of first-year undergrads marveling that Way Back Then People Really Thought That Way. So sorry I won’t be around for that too, come to think of it.

    And that’s about as much time I am willing to spend on willfully ignorant jackasses who can’t keep up with strong women. We’re partying on without you, love, and we don’t miss you at all.

  36. //The arguments are at the level of a high-school term paper.//

    I find this statement offensive. If I had turned in drivel like this as a term paper, I would never have graduated high school.

  37. @spuffyduds Bwah!

    I am not a post-feminism feminist. I am the third-wave.

    Fuck which wave. I will be a post-feminism feminist when, as the bumper sticker goes, we are post-patriarchy.

  38. Soooo…. gay guys get to be all, “I HAVE THE NUKES AND I ANSWER TO NOBODY BWAH HAH HAH!!!!”?

    No wonder they are so sassy!

    …what is that you say? This isn’t an issue of Stereotypes Today?

  39. I was literally fuming after I read this article. FUMING.

    First of all, in case anyone missed it, it’s supposed to be a book review. Instead it’s I HATE WOMEN AND FEMINISM IS EVIL LET ME TELL YOU WHAT I THINK ABOUT WOMEN WHO ARE PRETTY RAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRR. Seriously, it’s supposed to be a book review. Susan Pinker is probably like, “…. um…. when is he going to write about my book….?”

    Second of all, it’s extremely well-timed in light of this whole appalling George Sodini thing. I find that this kind of misogyny also comes out of a failure to see the larger picture, despite what your individual experience would tell you. Maybe a very articulate and well-researched evolutionary psychologist could make the claim that women are the stronger sex in that regard, but social and cultural patterns have overridden and subverted that. So yeah, okay, maybe women live longer than men on the whole, but how does that mitigate anything if it’s a life full of untoward sexual antagonism, lower salaries, generally unfair working conditions, and constant pressure to be something you’re not? That is the reality of being a woman today. And regardless of whether or not women will date you, that is, on a human level, unfair. Only a true psychopath and douchehound would argue that it’s not. (Although we see that there are plenty of those laying around.)

    Third of all, Gina Barreca’s response was wishy-washy, at best. Instead of directly contradicting Satoshi Douchebreath Kanazawa, she wrote a whole apologist ramble about how “no, it is REALLY HARD to be a feminist, because IT’S TRUE, MEN DON’T LIKE FEMINISTS.” In this day and age, that is not needed. Women should not have to apologize for being feminists. There should be no ambivalence necessary when a man writes an article in a widely-read national publication about how women demanding to be treated as equals is unnecessary and evil. But then again, I think that also might be generational. I’ve read other pieces by women her age who were active feminists in their youth who now do quite a lot of backpedaling, which I kind of understand but also kind of think is dreadful.

    Fourth of all, I had a conversation with a very close female friend about these two articles, and she was more offended by Barreca’s article than by Kanazawa’s. Her reasoning? “Hers is badly edited and long-winded. His isn’t saying anything really hateful, and plus, it’s concise.” WHAT. How is it possible to be a woman and read what he wrote and not see ANY hate in it? I can understand how men might be oblivious to sexism. But other women? Even other women who experience it daily can be totally unaware of it, which I just don’t get. I’m so glad that I’ve started reading SP and can talk about this with all of you guys and not feel like I’m heaving and groaning and turning into The Hulk while everyone looks at me funny.

    Fifth of all, Psychology Today is an absolute joke. No self-respecting professional actually uses it as a resource. I’m waiting for the day they re-title it with a more tabloid-appropriate name, like “The Monthly Spew.”

  40. So now my husband is completely obsessed with reading through the lunacy this guy is saying, and it turns out he’s not only a douchehound, but a genocidal one at that. From an article with the subtitle “Hate is all we need” (yeah, seriously):

    Here’s a little thought experiment. Imagine that, on September 11, 2001, when the Twin Towers came down, the President of the United States was not George W. Bush, but Ann Coulter. What would have happened then? On September 12, President Coulter would have ordered the US military forces to drop 35 nuclear bombs throughout the Middle East, killing all of our actual and potential enemy combatants, and their wives and children. On September 13, the war would have been over and won, without a single American life lost.

    Either this really is some sort of insane performance art, or he’s a sociopath. I knew Psychology Today was a crappy magazine, but I had no idea it was this crappy.

  41. Another thing: I wonder if this fabled female happiness (that allegedly existed before feminism shit in everybody’s easter basket) was confirmed by actual women….or their husbands.

  42. Oh, and as an aside, since women have just as much if not more power then men, shouldn’t Ann Coulter (who I’m sure he considers a “reasonably attractive young woman”) have been able to convince George Bush to drop all those bombs anyway?

  43. That is why I hope to have a daughter in the future…think if I should give birth to a man like Kanazawa. I could never forgive myself.

  44. Another thing: I wonder if this fabled female happiness (that allegedly existed before feminism shit in everybody’s easter basket) was confirmed by actual women….or their husbands.

    And, if women are particularly unhappy, why on earth is feminism to blame? Somehow it always seems to come down to “Having to work full-time AND maintain a household AND raise children makes women unhappy, and feminists are to blame.” How? At what point were feminists like, “Okay, corporations: we insist that you stop paying workers living wages, and instead of paying the women entering the workforce an equivalent salary to men, you drop everybody’s salary so that most families need to have both partners working full-time to even come close to getting by.” And then the corporations all cowed to the scary feminists. And then feminists were like, “Ha ha! Now women (and men) who would rather be home raising their children or volunteering or painting or whatever are going to be forced to work for low wages along with their partner just so they can pay most of their bills because a real living wage is a pipe dream for most people!”

    This seems to be what people think happened. I mean, honestly, I think I’d be less happy than I currently am if I had to work full-time (and I’m happier working part-time then I was when I was unemployed). We’re very fortunate that we can get by on 1-1/2 incomes. And, I do know a lot of women who would indeed be happier if they didn’t have to go back to work 8 weeks after their baby was born because otherwise they can’t make ends meet. But, that’s not the fault of feminists. Feminists didn’t lobby for low wages, or want to see women forced to work when they’d rather be home. It’s the fault of corporate capitalism which will use any excuse it can to pay people lower wages and make them work more hours for less, not of the feminist movement.

  45. Note to Satoshi: Why don’t you tell this to a girl who has been sold into a brothel in Phnom Penh, or a young woman who died in childbirth in Pakistan because as a woman she wasn’t worth the cab fare to get to a hospital, or a woman in the US who watched her rapist go free because testing her rape kit “wasn’t a priority.” At least maybe she got pregnant and got to pass her genes along to the next generation, right? I bet you couldn’t look Shazia Allahdita, Mukhtar Mai, Trisha Meili in the eyes and say this to them.

  46. @Tari: I think that the decline of human happiness can be explained by “Ignorance is bliss”

    Not that women were happy, just that no one really cared . . .

  47. Lori – Don’t you know that feminism is to blame for everything bad that’s happened in the past 100 years? We made the menz do it.

    (But we couldn’t make them give us equal pay, cheap child-care or full reproductive freedom. Because those things are impossible.)

  48. Guys saying feminism doesn’t work, or has failed, because women right now are happy, is like saying medical research is a crock because people still die of cancer. It’s an ongoing process, people!

  49. But we couldn’t make them give us equal pay, cheap child-care or full reproductive freedom. Because those things are impossible.

    But those sound like things that might actually raise the quality of life for women, so obviously feminists must oppose them, and instead be in favor of inadequate and expensive childcare, low-paying jobs for all workers, and limited reproductive options.

  50. This is why in the imaginary totalitarian society in which I am Madame President for Life, there will be mandatory Logic 101 classes. I mean, let alone the fact that he feels compelled to refute an entire philosophy that he hasn’t even bothered to google, dude doesn’t even understand what contradiction is.

    A: Women have more power than men.
    not A: Men have more power than women.

    He’s actually moved beyond the basic fallacy (A & not A) to some bizarro causal relationship (A because not A). Women have more power than men because men have more power than women, and therefore women have more power than men because HOT PUSSY!!!!!!!!

  51. puts me to mind of a conversation i had 30 years ago with a Ladies Aid member in a church in the rural west: women have no place on church councils, but that doesn’t mean they have no power, since they tell their husbands what to do anyway.

  52. @Lori, oh crap! You are totally right. feminism is getting totally scapegoated for how our exploitative economic system abuses workers! I’m not sure why I was never unable to put that together for myself. Maybe because it’s terrifying to think about?

  53. So, all I have to do in order to get published is write a completely moronic, factually unstable, feminist-bashing article? And I can get PAID?!
    Woo-hoo!

    Ironic that this “article” came out right as we’re discussing rape.

    ‘Cause if we REALLY had power? THERE WOULDN’T BE ANY RAPE.

    If I ever meet this numbskull in person, do I have permission to give him a really bad wedgie?

  54. “any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.”

    This, Satoshi Kanazawa, epitomises what is wrong with male psychology. This kind of thinking is also what probably led that 40-something Pittsburgh man to shoot & kill women at his local gym yesterday.

    Clearly, Satoshi Kanazawa is one disturbed individual.

  55. Okay. I read this fabulon of a blog daily and I haven’t really wanted to comment until right now:

    As a former statistician and current social scientist, Sweet Machine is my flipin’ hero.

    Thanks.

  56. *Sigh* My husband has more shoes than I do, we’re even steven on the whole “passing on the genes” thing, and I will probably die before he does, because of, you know, teh fatz.

    I suck at being a woman.

  57. she wrote a whole apologist ramble about how “no, it is REALLY HARD to be a feminist, because IT’S TRUE, MEN DON’T LIKE FEMINISTS.” In this day and age, that is not needed. Women should not have to apologize for being feminists.

    No, of course we shouldn’t need to, but a whole lot of women still feel that need — or won’t accept the label at all* — because of a total misunderstanding of what feminism is, which is largely because of douches like Kanazawa lying about it. I saw Barreca’s piece as being primarily about how sad it is that misinformation keeps a lot of women from understanding what feminism is. Including her younger self:

    It was as if the little lightbulb that appeared over Bugs Bunny’s head when he got an idea suddenly appeared over mine. It seemed unnerving, actually, that I was gazing reprovingly at all those qualities that I myself possessed. I was certainly ambitious, ready to speak and eager to defend my position on a subject. I liked being a woman, was proud of my femininity and believed myself to be equal to any task set before me by society–at least as well equipped to deal with them as any guy I sat next to in class (he could no more skin a bison than I could and I could probably defend myself on Tenth Avenue more ably than he).

    So, when I really thought about it, I was already a feminist no matter what I chose to call myself.

    and then:

    I see, rather remarkably, my female students going through the same sorts of trials and self-examinations today in spite of the fifteen years of feminism that have passed. Some of these women students are planning to go to medical school. Some are engineering majors. They are track stars or nationally-ranked basketball players. These young women certainly work hard, compete fiercely and are not embarrassed about admitting that their goals are high. They work to put themselves through school. Most of them aren’t considering getting married until they’re several years into their chosen professions. Most of them leave home after graduation to make their way in cities across the country to find interesting, challenging jobs.

    Yet when I ask how many of them consider themselves feminists, only about a third in any one class will dare to raise their hands.

    I mean, it’s hardly a treatise on radical feminism, and there is a certain amount of “Really, we’re not all [Stereotype XYZ]” when the better point is, what the fuck is so scary about Stereotype XYZ in the first place? (OMG, hairy legs! A woman who’s not smiling all the time! A lesbian! A woman who’s gone 6 weeks without a mani/pedi! THANK GOD HER BOOBS ARE COVERED SO I CAN THINK CLEARLY ENOUGH TO GET AWAY.) But I really don’t think her thesis is “Waaaah, it’s hard to be a feminist because men don’t like us” either.

    *Here, I’m talking about young women who have been conditioned to believe that feminism is icky, not women who reject feminism because they feel the movement hasn’t historically represented their interests.

  58. Oooooookay…

    Dear Menz who have all the sub-power to my uber-power,

    I have gotten tired of watching you lot jump through hoops trying to impress me.

    (Aaawwww. that widdle Manhattan Project? Was so kayoot. And while I appreciate your pulling off the moon landing, I enjoyed inventing the conspiracy theory that it was faked MUCH MORE. Watching you play that one out has been *golden*)

    Anway, so I am kind of tired of it all. This means (and this is your official notification), I am coming to take the wealth, politics, influence riches, power and fun back from you all since you are bor-ing.

    I figure… since I have all the power anyway, I can have the money AND the sex. My gay brother and I have some plans for those resources, namely designing hot sexy high heeled shoes that are comfortable.

    This will free you up from trying to impress me so much and you can get on with other things. I don’t really care what things. Just other ones.

    And… so… now you know. It wasn’t Obama who came to take away your guns. It was me.

    Kisses,

    AnthroK8

  59. I knew there was a reason I was canceling my Pysch Today subscription — douchebaggy articles like this. That, and the “Fat people are unhappy because they are fat. If they lose weight they will be happy” attitude.

  60. Shorter Kanazawa:
    “I’m a dork who couldn’t get laid in college and can’t get laid now by my 23-y-o TAs, to whose bodies I think I am entitled.”

    I also enjoyed this from a (young male) commenter on Prof Gina’s response article:

    “His definitions are propaganda, his logic is fallacious, his assertions are misogynistic, and his conclusions unsupported. This will stand the test of time as absolutely one of the worst things I have ever read in my entire life.”

    I’d say that about sums it up, yeah?

  61. Damn. If I had realized that SHOES were the source of all my power, maybe I wouldn’t have spent my life avoiding shoe stores! (Hate shoe shopping…not even sure why, it just isn’t fun to me)

    But now that I know that all my power is tied to the quantity of my shoes I need to shop right? I mean, by having more shoes (and thus womanly Pow-ah) I can influence more menz to do my bidding (so long as said bidding is “take advantage of my body, no really I loves that, let me spread my legs for ya”) and make decisions for me and tell me what is right for all women.. wait…why do I want that again? Oh wait, that’s right… SHOES!

    But wait…I’m creeping up to 30 years old…by current standards I’m not likely to hit that “reasonably attractive” criteria…so does that mean my shoes have a pow-ah shelf-life and I have wasted it? If I wake up with a bad hair day do my power-shoes scamper away and leave me with no persuasive power …uh I mean Woman Power to Control Men?

    Maybe THAT’S why there is still rape and yet no good child-care, or equal pay or reproductive freedom? Every time we women-folk thought to try and persuade our menz to Give Us Those Rights, we were having bad hair days and all our powah shoes had run away….

    I keep trying to become a stay at home April D by mesmerizing my husband with my boobies but thus far have been unsuccessful. While some might say that it is due to niggling things like needing 2 incomes to afford to live; by Satoshi logic I must be ill-using my womanly shoe-ly power. Maybe I need to jiggle boobs while screaming Hot Pussy AND wear high heels all at the same time?

  62. Y’all remember that Dilbert when Dilbert was all (and I may be paraphrasing here), “*I* should be attractive to women because computers are where it’s at now…not killing woolly mammoths!”

    That holds as much logic as this guy’s article. So, using SM’s analysis of this guy’s logical pattern, I feel empowered to say:

    Dilbert is a cartoon strip.
    This guy logics like a cartoon strip.
    This guy is a cartoon strip.

    All clear?

  63. “Women live longer! Even if they’re miserable!”

    But we still have moar shoez though, KH.

    Because the ones I bought when I was 1 will not fit me when I am 80.

  64. And then, bringing us full circle, we have older women observing the same issue with young women rejecting the “feminist” label — AND THUS BLAMING YOUNG FEMINISTS FOR THE DEATH OF FEMINISM.

    I’ve only skimmed because I don’t need the blood pressure spike, but for fuck’s sake. “But is it only me, Ms Ranty-Pants, and my generation who care? Why do younger women seem largely oblivious?” Followed later by: “There has not been a single influential feminist book published this decade.”

    Gee, I don’t suppose it’s possible that you just have no fucking idea what young feminists are doing, huh? I love how here, she talks to “half a dozen twentysomethings” who mostly aren’t self-identified feminists, and observes a few feminists who don’t behave in ways she likes, and decides that means feminism is dead . Because, you know, back in the glory days, feminism was so successful that if you dropped in on any group of young women, they’d totally tell you they were all feminists and go on to outline their Daily Plan for Totally Effective Activism. Somewhere along the way, it all went to hell, and women started internalizing oppression again, AFTER OUR FOREMOTHERS WORKED SO HARD TO COMPLETELY END THAT!

    I’m not big on 2nd wave/3rd wave fights, and I have a huge amount of respect for 2nd wavers in general. But come on! I would much rather see an argument like Barreca’s, saying “Yeah, it’s a problem that so many young women don’t identify with feminism, and assholes like Kanazawa contribute to that,” than yet another one that says, “Feminism is dying because young women are frivolous!” FFS, she quotes Maureen Dowd, World’s Most Obnoxious Feminist Concern Troll. ‘Nuff said.

  65. Madame President for Life SM, if I am finishing a paper or article on something frivolous – ’cause yanno women don’t have to make a living – can I delegate my shoe shopping that week?

  66. I will say, though, that I’ve come across the notion – expressed literally, not subliminally – that the only women that count are the attractive ones waaaaay too often in the past coupla days.

    I concur…I wrote about this in my blog because now almost 24 hours later it’s still pissing me off: A guy at work was casually talking about some girl taping her own suicide (because watching things like this serve as entertainment) and he said at the end . . . and she was cute too. I don’t even know the guy, he was talking to my friends, but I said, because ugly girls are the only ones who should kill themselves, right? He replied back, well, I call it like I see it. God bless his soul if we ever work together.

  67. KH, Timesonline UK and the Daily Fail are not good for blood pressure management.

    My bad if we did not go over that.

  68. re: Shoes,
    I just have to say that at this exact moment the guy who sits next to me and his male friend are looking at ordering custom shoes on the internet.

    They are trying to take our POWER!

  69. My son’s at vacation Bible school this week, and their service project this year is collecting shoes to give away. I thought, originally, this was a nice idea. Now I see it as nothing more than a plot to take away my power and let some undeserving person (who might not even be young OR reasonably attractive–I’d like to think I’m at least one or the other ;)) have it. I’m so glad I read this blog entry.

    I’m still processing the fact that, in his column, this man pined for the chance to detonate 35 nuclear bombs over the entire Middle East, thereby wiping out the entire population there, and keeping America safe. That something like that can make it into what I assumed was a mainstream publication is not what I would have expected.

  70. They are trying to take our POWER!

    Next they’ll take half YOUR stuff!

    Madame President for Life SM, if I am finishing a paper or article on something frivolous – ’cause yanno women don’t have to make a living – can I delegate my shoe shopping that week?

    You may not delegate, but you may make up for it by purchasing two pairs the next week.

  71. My husband has more shoes than I do AND I am the primary wage earner in our family.

    At least the actuarial tables claim I will live longer than him, otherwise I might start thinking I was a man… and then I’d be POWERLESS!!!

  72. It occurs to me that Imelda Marcos must have been running half of the world’s governments and most of its electricity supply from her shoe closet…

  73. Evo psych is a depressing view on human nature. It leaves little room for people’s ability to change, love, altruism, higher states of consciousness, or progress. No, it’s all reduced to sex, death, and fighting those in the “Other” category.

    And his other blog posts calling for the deaths of people he doesn’t like is even more depressing. Stay classy, Psychology Today!

  74. I think this is just part of the Jerry Springerization of all the old media. This was published to get a rise, the way Mimi Roth is put on TV to get a rise. It’s a dying industry poking at sores to get customers.

    Picture my brain exploding with relief that someone has so succinctly stated what has been banging around my head for the last couple of years….

  75. strangely, the whole thing reminds me of that point at the end of The Wizard of Oz where Dorothy turns to Glinda with a look of uncomprehending horror — ‘Wait, you mean I could’ve just clicked these damn red shoes and gone home any time I wanted?!’

    Of course, sweetheart, only the Wizard guy decided it was probably best not to tell you. For your own good, naturally.

    I do have a point not based entirely in random pop culture, btw. Power isn’t power unless you perceive that you’ve got it and can therefore use it!

    Men may perceive that certain classes of women have control over them but i’m pretty sure that even the women who do fit into the corset that is life as a Reasonably Attractive Young Woman don’t feel like they’ve got the power to breathe much less dominate the Universe.

    We can’t choose things we’ve never experienced. Men experience power. Women experience regular reminders that the man behind the curtain holds the key to their dearest hopes and dreams. In fact, he holds captive their imagination but it’s not like that matters or anything since the little red slippers are distractingly shiny and don’t really belong to us anyway!

    le sigh.

  76. Madame President,

    By my powers of persuasion, I caused my husband to take my favorite pair of shoes to the repair shop a few days ago. However, he paid for their release and returned them to me today on his own recognizance.

    What could this mean?

  77. And then, bringing us full circle, we have older women observing the same issue with young women rejecting the “feminist” label — AND THUS BLAMING YOUNG FEMINISTS FOR THE DEATH OF FEMINISM.

    This makes me so sad, on a personal level. I basically ended a very pleasant friendship with a woman who has incredible local history as a feminist and an activist and with whom I used to collaborate on a number of campaigns and projects because she insisted that there was no longer any such thing as young feminists. I gave her blog links. I gave her magazines. I showed her flyers for events. But by and large young feminists/womanists don’t approach issues the say way she did from a theoretical or a practical standpoint, so to her? They were not only doing it wrong, they were not doing it at all. And I don’t even think I have the emotional energy to explain her views on why women of color weren’t more involved in her feminism, but most people reading commenting here could probably guess.

    Sigh. It just makes me so sad.

  78. April D: Maybe I need to jiggle boobs while screaming Hot Pussy AND wear high heels all at the same time?

    Honey, if the glorious sight of you in that belly dancing oufit of yours hasn’t shifted him, it ain’t a-gonna happen visually, barefoots or not.

    Plus, what fares it a woman to gain the world, if she breaks an ankle in the process?

  79. Asshole Kanazawa said: “Women don’t control these resources, because they don’t have to. What do women control? Men. As I mention in an earlier post, any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.”

    Except the vast majority don’t. It’s been my experience that THAT kind of power is fleeting, short lived, and often miniscule in regards to ruling the fucking world. Often, the case plays out more like this:
    “Oh man, she’s one hot babe…and she’s with me! I get to touch her boobies!”

    Then…”Wow…she shops a lot because she doesn’t know how much money we have cuz she’s not smart.”

    Then…”Look! A shiny new girl over there! WITH BETTER BOOBIES!”

    Which leads to…”Get the hell out of my life bitch! And take the kids with you! You’re worthless and draining me!”

    Which ends in…..Poverty for the woman. Bigger expenses for child care. A lower wage for doing the same job. LESS control. Less time to change the world. Endless life altering circumstances.

    If women really controlled men, there would be no rape or violence against women, or anyone. There would be no inequality in the workplace, politics, income, careeres, culture, and families. Men would place a high value on childbearing, running a home, and raising kids-if a woman chooses that path.

    HOW DOES HE EXPLAIN REALITY? How does he explain the plethora of women in the world who endure a life that is not of their choosing under the rule of men?

  80. @Regina T — “HOW DOES HE EXPLAIN REALITY? How does he explain the plethora of women in the world who endure a life that is not of their choosing under the rule of men?”

    Why, by ignoring their existence entirely because he’s the one in charge of what’s “real” and what’s not. But that’s not POWER or anything ;)

    No, no. It’s obviously a magical gift from the Reasonably Attractive Young muses whose whim it is to delight him by daily kneeling at his feet, proffering individually peeled grapes and wine.

  81. I do not exist in this fuckwad’s life (because of the gay), therefore he does not exist in mine. Ahahaha!

    Except to note this:

    On September 12, President Coulter would have ordered the US military forces to drop 35 nuclear bombs throughout the Middle East, killing all of our actual and potential enemy combatants, and their wives and children. On September 13, the war would have been over and won, without a single American life lost.

    I can tell you right now that *I* would have risen up to fight America if this shit had happened, and I’m about as non-war as they come. He thinks that what, the rest of THE ENTIRE WORLD would have been like “Yeah, good idea!”?

    Satoshi Kanazawa, FAIL. Get off my planet.

  82. We can’t choose things we’ve never experienced. Men experience power. Women experience regular reminders that the man behind the curtain holds the key to their dearest hopes and dreams.

    This is such a great point, and a good response to the “women control men because boobies” line of thinking.

  83. Wait? I have power over men? When did that happen?

    Oh, wait never mind. I have teh fats, and therefore am not conventionally attractive enough to me a soul crushing matriarch

    That article is made of so much fail, it makes my brain hurt.

  84. Oops, that should day “to be a soul crushing matriarch” My brain is still burning from the the amount of fail contained in that article.

  85. Why are there still SO MANY FUCKING PEOPLE who think that men wanting to fuck us equals us having power? What an AWESOME power it is! I have the power to be trashed for fucking you, for not fucking you, for wanting you attention, for not wanting it, IT’S FUCKING MARVELOUS, HOW COME WE KEEP COMPLAINING??

    Sorry, I’m just seriously pissed off. Does this jerk really think us women got it made and feminists are just a bunch of overreacting bitches?

  86. Not only that, I think men who think women “have it made” in this way deeply resent that and hate women for it. They have such power over us!! I can’t control my penis and it’s all their fault! And they don’t even appreciate all the things I do with it for them!

  87. Then prostitutes must be in the highest place in the power chain. I mean, they CONTROL men through sex, and get paid for it! Fuck it, let’s all be prostitutes, it’s the female equivalent of being president!

  88. … ok, so I didn’t even get through the first sentence before wanting to punch something. There is no way I am going to be able to read that entire article and remain sane.

    (if I have SOOO MUCH POWAR OVER MENZ, why do I not have a way to make this guy shut the fuck up forever? Or did my AWESOME POWAR expire now I’m over thirty and therefore, somehow, not actually a woman anymore? SO CONFUSED.)

  89. I used to be one of those young, college aged women who didn’t call herself a feminist. I think I used the word ”equalitist instead.  It took a shitty relationship and time for me to realize that I am a feminist, damnit, and it’s not a dirty word.

  90. “Women don’t control these resources, because they don’t have to. What do women control? Men. As I mention in an earlier post, any reasonably attractive young woman exercises as much power over men as the male ruler of the world does over women.”

    And Eva Peron DIED YOUNG. Your point?

    Just…omfg. OMFG WUT.

  91. Douchehound says: However, in the only two biologically meaningful measures of welfare – longevity and reproductive success – women are and have always been slightly better off than men.

    What a great way to measure welfare you got there! Wow! So, for example, let’s compare the welfare of me, a young(ish) woman from a northern european country and, oh, I don’t know, a hypothetical very poor woman of the same age from southeastern Asia.

    Reproductive success: None for me, and not in the foreseeable future either. For her, multiple children (some of whom she might have had to sell for prostitution or other forms of slavery just to survive). She wins this one.

    Longevity: At first it would seem I have this, but we mustn’t forget I’m fat and therefore probably won’t see my imaginary children graduate. She very likely isn’t fat, so let’s call it a tie on this one.

    In any case, it would seem her welfare measures up better than mine. Nevermind she might not have power over her own life, any education or, you know, food and shelter.

  92. It’s 4 am out here, so I’m not sure my comment even makes any sense. This guy’s got me so angry I couldn’t go to bed, I need to be up again in four hours. Thanks for this too, oh fucking idiotic douchehound.

    But then again, I’m not that reasonably attractive young woman, so what does he care about me.

    *is filled with rage*

  93. This isn’t the worst part of this ridiculous mess of writing, but it’s been bugging me. As a law student we’re taught the reasonable standard. By using the word reasonably to describe a young woman, means that HE gets to decide who qualifies. Because reasonably is subjective to the judge and jury. Which makes him the judge and jury of all womankind.

    Which makes him the biggest douchehound that ever douched.

  94. the women who do fit into the corset that is life as a Reasonably Attractive Young Woman don’t feel like they’ve got the power to breathe

    Your whole comment was beautiful, Catatonic kid, but this piece could stand alone as one of the best things I’ve read in ages.

  95. Because, you know, back in the glory days, feminism was so successful that if you dropped in on any group of young women, they’d totally tell you they were all feminists and go on to outline their Daily Plan for Totally Effective Activism.

    Right. That’s why, when I was in college in 1980, the dorms were just teeming with young women who didn’t shave or wear makeup and carried burlap-sack purses and wore boring old comfortable shoes, and always spoke up in class and insisted in paying their way on dates, and…except THE PART WHERE IT NEVER HAPPENED. Hell, fuck 1980, how about 1977, when I was in high school and I was the only feminist in my class, and people derided me as a boy-despising weirdo for insisting that women were not inferior to men. Yeah, those were the good old days. Maybe if these so-called “second wavers” had ever set foot outside the Womyn’s Center at their colleges, they’d have known about all that, hm?

    As for this piece (o’ shit), boy, this one belongs in the Hall of Flamebait, doesn’t it? I keep thinking, if they get much more desperate for outraged eyeballs, Holocaust deniers and people who favor abolishing the age of consent can’t be too far behind. So President Coulter would have just gone ahead and nuked Iraq, eh? Well, maybe…except for the part where ONLY ABOUT THREE PEOPLE WOULD HAVE ACTUALLY VOTED FOR HER. Sheesh.

  96. I’m pretty sure Coulter would have nuked the entire Middle East. Which would have been AWESOME, because then no Americans would have died!

    And, because Coulter would have been a female President, those reasonably attractive young Middle Eastern women couldn’t have used their special boobie powers to subvert her plan, the way they’re always doing with male leaders.

  97. Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t the fact that only “reasonably attractive young women” are considered valuable enough to be ceded any power at all kind of ONE OF THE FUCKING POINTS OF FEMINISM?

    Also, yes. The power of a woman to make a guy pay for your drinks is EXACTLY EQUIVALENT to the power of a man to rape, kill, intimidate, enslave, belittle, or disenfranchise women. CHRIST ALMIGHTY I AM MOVING OFF THE PLANET

  98. *Fillyjonk … oops, sorry. I promise to spell your name right if you just TAKE ME WITH YOU!!!

    Speaking of which, I just had a random memory of a really bad old film about a space mission where a bunch of women run a planet etc and the space travelling men land there and ‘show them the error of their ways’. Can’t remember the name of the film, but it has some kind of prize for being the ‘best worst film ever made’ because it’s so bad (sunny earth skies in the space ship windows when they’re flying through space, etc). Anyway, as I remember it, teh menz destroyed the feminazi planet by teaching them about teh boobeez powah… hmmph.

  99. Where do women like myself who’re unimpressed with men having money and power but very much impressed by men who are “reasonably attractive” fit into all this, Satoshi dear?

    I guess that’s what you meant about feminism turning women into men.

  100. spoonfork38 “Plus, what fares it a woman to gain the world, if she breaks an ankle in the process?”

    Indeed! Besides, with one foot in a cast would my awesome shoe pow-ah be somehow halved?? Bad way to start off a life of leisure ;)

    And I suggest that instead of us having to leave the planet, that this douchenozzle and his weasel of ineptitude take a long flying leap into space and leave all us poor…uh sorry powerful womins alone!

  101. Oh. My. God. That’s why women invented painful high heels that kill your feet! So that our boobies would stick out, thus increasing our POWER!

    Go us! (/sarcasm)

  102. Also, how did this guy ever get through college if this is the kind of work he produces? If I was grading this essay I would have written CITATIONS PLEASE right by the title, and that’s just the beginning.

  103. FJ, I hope there’s room for me, too!

    YES to everything you said – I think it was all there in my head subconsciously, but I just wasn’t sure how to express it. On top of that, this uncomfortably approaches blaming women for rape – because we all know that men can’t control their actions in the presence of boobies… *shudder*

  104. That article is so fail-tastic that I couldn’t even think of a comment other than “Wha?!?”.

    And then I was watching So You Think You Can Dance while reading the comments in this thread, and a replay of this routine came on, and it occurred to me that it is oddly appropriate to the topic.

  105. Scarily, having spent too much time reading Emile by Rousseau last year, I can say that this just seems like an even worse evo psych version of it.

  106. I think my favorite quote is this one:

    “The sex gap in happiness (in women’s favor) has declined in the past 35 years as the sex gap in pay (in men’s favor) narrowed. Now women make as much as, sometimes even more than, men do. As a result, today women are just as unhappy, or even more unhappy than, men are.”

    Women’s happiness has gone down! Their salaries have gone up! These two things MUST be related! It couldn’t POSSIBLY have anything to do with ridiculous beauty standards and misogyny all over the media or anything else! Fucking feminists giving women evil monies!!

    How the hell do you ‘measure’ the happiness of women as a whole, anyway?

  107. @Chris – obviously you measure our happiness by how many babies we have! We’re working more rather than staying home and making babies and that’s why we’re less happy.

    DUH!

  108. Women’s happiness has gone down! Their salaries have gone up! These two things MUST be related! It couldn’t POSSIBLY have anything to do with ridiculous beauty standards and misogyny all over the media or anything else! Fucking feminists giving women evil monies!!

    Or, you know, with the fact that men’s salaries have risen at a very slow rate, one which often doesn’t keep pace with inflation. I’m sure the fact that both women AND men now fail to make a living wage in many cases has nothing to do with happiness. Or the fact that in many places the cost of homes, cars, and a college education is 10x what it was 35 years ago, but salaries in many cases aren’t even 4x what they were in 1975.

    Nope, it’s obviously the fault of feminists if women are less happy than they were before.

  109. Well, goodness sakes; I guess the Declaration of Independence is illogical too. I mean, if equality = identical; then it states that all men are identical, since that is clearly not so, it must be illogical.

    Sigh.

    This is the how the US ends, blown apart by the power of one man’s mind.

  110. And, you know, it’s a good thing that women’s salaries are the *only* things that have increased during the time period under consideration, right? And that the women in question have stayed exactly the same, too – in age, demographics, etc. Hell, the whole world has stayed PRECISELY THE SAME except for the salaries, and the feminism, and the… uh, the official scienterrific happiness levels.

    I mean, otherwise, there’d be different variables to consider, and this dude’s conclusion would be exactly as well-founded as saying that women’s unhappiness is caused by rocket launches or Jonas brothers fan sites or value meals or home foreclosures or Livestrong bracelets.

  111. I fumed about this a few days ago. Right now I can only offer one of my favorite Susan Jane Gilman quotes ever:

    Sure, beauty has the power to excite men.

    But so does a box of donuts.

    DRST

  112. “The radical notion that women are men”?

    Dude, didn’t Simone de Beauvoir already cover that?

    Man is defined as a human being and a woman as a female — whenever she behaves as a human being she is said to imitate the male.

    Keep up, can’t you?

  113. Whoa – I just remembered this:

    On another blog I regularly read, I came to the defense of the blogger’s sexual preferences (i.e. having sex doesn’t make a woman a whore or slut – not even getting into the problems with those words themselves). The response – from a woman, no less – was to call me a “stupid, butch, feminist.”

    So sad that women will use feminist (or butch!) as an insult.

  114. Wait, so, if you’re young and attractive enough to appeal to penises, then you’re powerful.

    … and how does this put real power in womens’ hands, exactly? If you’re not pretty or young, you’re just sol?

  115. Well, I think somebody just needs to tell my female college students that they, apparently, have just as much power as any male world leader. You would think they could, at the very least, harness that enormous power to get their tuition lowered or something, but I’m seeing nothing.

  116. Why oh why did I read the comments on Barecca’s essay? To quote.

    “There is no need for feminism, racism or any of those other useless divisive concepts, we need more simple humanism, unity, tolerance of one another and respect based on achievements and successes. ”

    One of these things is not like the other, one of these things is not the same…

  117. @CassandraSays:

    Wow, I’m very glad I didn’t read the comments – no, we don’t need feminism; we need to only respect those people who can prove they deserve it. Oy.

  118. OK – a little late but hey…

    What I can’t beleive is that this guy think men are out there trying to impress women? Is his head up his arse and stuck there?

    The guy swaggering down the street with his pants falling off his rear is NOT doing it to impress women – I’m sure most women are having a good laugh like I am while trying to figure out the physics involved :-)

    Most guys impress women only long enough to get what they want then knuckle back to the locker room – who doesn’t know this? If they didn’t want sex from us they’d have nothing to do with us at all! Well, I always thought it was obvious…

    The guy with the sports car or the huge truck, the guy with the little “display” toys (blackberry, fancy watch) the guy working day and night to get a high power position either in business or politics, is trying to establish higher status with other men in order to elbow the lower status out of his way so he can have access to the “treats” – ie: us “powerful, young, beautiful” women. Oh wait, no – that’s right… We’re just another status placeholder for the guy…

    Gah, this guy’s from another planet or something (?!?). How can he be so wrong sooo quickly??? And get paid/published for it to boot! Another “guy” job – I really need to get me one of those jobs. I’m doing this whole “powerful, young, reasonably attractive” thing all wrong somehow. Maybe he’s offering lessons later…

  119. Wow. That was totally the most stupid thing I have ever read, I am a little sad I wasted my time and braincells. But yay for pulling fucking idiots apart.

    And since I qualify as a young feminist I am saddened to find out I don’t exist. Again.

  120. @Meems – It gets better. Someone stated that “feminism is a mental disorder”.

    Personally I think it’s misogyny that’s the mental illness – it’s an irrational fear of women having power, at least in part.

  121. . . . so apparently the fact that I have to have special work shoes, special dress shoes, special super-dress shoes, special sandals, and coordinating outfits is now a *BONUS*? See, all along, I thought it was more shit I had to pay attention to and lavish money on and rub aloe-vera cream into rather than being able to slap on a comfy pair of black all-occasion manshoes (and maybe rubber overshoes, if I need to muck out some stalls or something.)

    But now I totally understand – you know how if you’re in power, you’re blind to your privilege? I totally missed that part of my privilege. Once you put that in the mix, then having to work my ass off, fighting assumptions I’m male and/or straight in almost all my hobbies, earning significantly less money than my peers, and facing up to the significant odds that I’ll be raped at some point in my life are totally put in perspective. Really, all that can hardly compare to the joys of logging onto Zappos and trying to find dark dress shoes (because all I have are red shoes and I have a funeral to attend, and my normal black shoes are not spiffy enough.)

    I hope that Dr. Kanazawa is planning on working with RuPaul to alleviate this Beastly Oppression of the Shoez (BOOTS).

  122. I just had a random memory of a really bad old film about a space mission where a bunch of women run a planet etc and the space travelling men land there and ’show them the error of their ways’.

    Offhand, I can think of three possibilities: ‘Fire Maidens from Outer Space,’ ‘Cat-Women of the Moon,’ and ‘Queen of Outer Space.’ And, scarily, that’s just offhand. I know there are more.

  123. “Yeah, who cares about quality of life? Obviously all women are really only worth the space we take up because of our breeding abilities. Asshole”

    And what about womyn who biologically can’t reproduce? They had an illness or a genetic defect or a surgery or are trans or who are post-menopausal? Do they not count? Are they not still womyn?

    What about womyn who no longer have breasts due to wanting to live longer when diagnosed with breast cancer?

    What about womyn who are not considered attractive by mainstream society, because they gained weight due to fulfilling their reproductive duties? (snark, snark)

    FAIL!! FAIL!!! FAIL!!!! I think I consider this article to be an example of socially acceptable and promoted hate speech.

    I also can think of a milion things that make me a worthwhile and powerful person that have nothing to do with my uterus, my breasts, or the number of shoes I own.

  124. “but I said, because ugly girls are the only ones who should kill themselves, right? He replied back, well, I call it like I see it. God bless his soul if we ever work together”

    Are you shitting me?!!! Wow! That comment really hit home for me, because I’ve had friends commit suicide and as much as I loathe to admit this, I’ve considered it myself many times. No one who has personally experienced suicidal thinking or its consequences could ever, ever think or say something like that. When someone commits suicide, it’s like a part of you also dies too and that part is your hope. No one’s hope should be taken away, no matter what they look like.

  125. Eucritta: minus the space part, it could have been ‘Piranha Women of the Avacado Jungle of Death’.

    I can’t touch the article-slamming; I stopped reading halfway through the third paragraph, when the stabbing pain behind my right eye got unbearable.

  126. living400lbs:

    yeah, I know. I guess I kind of muddled my argument by bringing in the all too familiar “but fatties don’t live to be 80!” thing into it, because it really doesn’t have so much to do with this.

    But still, if we consider these two to be the only measurements of a good life, it’s mostly a tie. My life expentacy at birth is 82.3, hers 58.04 (I took Laos here as the example). My fertility rate is 1.70, hers 3.59. And a tie is still a ridiculous result, I think. Yeah, I’m sure she has it just as good as me.

  127. On top of that, this uncomfortably approaches blaming women for rape – because we all know that men can’t control their actions in the presence of boobies…

    Meems, this doesn’t approach it, this IS it. This argument is where “she was asking for it” comes from.

    I think I want to become a lesbian separatist terrorist just because he deserves them.

    I pretty much am most days (if by “terrorist” you mean “women who refuses to back down to men as often as she can find the energy”, which a lot of men do). It’s great.

  128. Wait, wait, wait! Teh menz have power by money, but we have power by shoes, right? Right. How do we get teh shoes if we have no monies?!

    Oh… we have to jiggle our hypno-boobie-beams of power and we get the shoes or the money for the shoes. My mind was so awash with power that I forgot.

    But I only have three pairs of shoes and none of them are heels. Are flats any less powerful than heels?

    DRST: “‘Sure, beauty has the power to excite men.

    But so does a box of donuts.'”

    Man, a donut would excite me right about now. I’d better go flash the donut guy… but wait! Will that even work? I do have teh fatz, you know. And even if it does work, if I eat the donut and get fatter, will it work next time? What do I do if I want a donut? Will I have the power? Will my hypo-boobie-beams stop working?!

    I’m all for using my womanly shoe-boobie power to make Kanazawa build Fillyjonk’s spaceship! Then I’ll take my fat, feminist behind off of this planet and rule another with boobies AND money. Take that Kanazawa!

  129. I also love how it’s the “ASSUMPTION that women are and have historically always been worse off than men.”

    Like example after example of present and historic abuse of women isn’t enough evidence and it’s still an assumption.

    Damn, ladies, he found us out! We can no longer go on planting evidence! The sheet has been torn down! Pay no attention to that woman behind the curtain!!!

  130. As insane as Satoshi Kanazawa is, I also think it’s important to recognize that the converse of his argument isn’t true, either: all women aren’t powerless, and all men don’t have more power than all women. I think it’s very easy to lose sight of the privilege that many of us can have, particularly if we are straight, white, educated, “First World” women.

    I know that, as a straight white woman with an advanced degree who, while probably not even middle-class, is at least not living in poverty, I’ve got a whole lot of power–in the sense of political and economic influence–that many of the men around me in Detroit, many of whom are poor, black, and uneducated. My first real introduction to feminism came in the context of learning from women who were very committed to what was known back in the 1990s as Third World feminism (I don’t think they call it that any more), and being aware of my own capacity to be an oppressor has always been more central to my feminism, for me, than counting the ways in which I am oppressed.

    Not that women’s oppression isn’t real; it is. But, patriarchy is a system that does NOT reward or benefit all men equally, at all, or equally exclude and oppress all women.

  131. And I really didn’t intend that as snottily as it sounded. I just get a bit antsy when a group of women who are largely white, largely educated, and largely Western start talking about the powerlessness of women and the power wielded by men as if race and class, in particular, don’t play a hugely significant role in who does and doesn’t wield power.

  132. Lori – I’m not disagreeing with you, but since I’m on a quoting kick, you reminded me of a quote from Shirley Chisholm, “Of my two ‘handicaps’, being female put many more obstacles in my path than being black.’

    DRST

  133. I think it’s very easy to lose sight of the privilege that many of us can have, particularly if we are straight, white, educated, “First World” women.

    Yes, but most of us will never, ever have male privilege, which is what we’re discussing here. That doesn’t mean some of us as individuals won’t have a better overall social position than some men — it means that every man, of every class, race, ability, etc., benefits from a system of privilege to which women do not have access.

    This is pretty much privilege 101. Having white privilege does not make me more powerful than Oprah — but it does mean I’ve benefited from advantages specific to whiteness all my life, and she never had and never will have access to those. Ellen Degeneres is a lot more powerful than I am, but I have heterosexual privilege and she does not. And none of us have male privilege, no matter how many individual men may be worse off overall than we are. It’s not about who “has it better” in the final analysis, it’s about systems designed to benefit certain groups of people, even if some among the unprivileged groups find a way to get ahead anyway, sometimes because they benefit from other systems.

    Ergo, insisting that we should all take a moment in a discussion of male privilege to look at how many men have less overall power than we do is beside the point, and very WATM. Examining how we benefit from other systems of privilege, and what individual advantages we’ve gotten is important — but when the subject is male privilege, talking about how other forms of privilege can sometimes override it at the individual level only distracts from an important discussion of how it operates culture-wide.

  134. And DRST, while that may have been true for Shirley Chisholm, I’m none too comfortable with white women saying, “Hey, even a prominent black woman said being female is harder than being black.” Racism and sexism go hand in hand — separating them is basically impossible, and oppression olympics never advances the discussion. The point is that the least advantaged man has male privilege and the most advantaged woman does not.

  135. OMG, Kate, I want to quote that everywhere. This is the most frequent and annoying argument I hear when the subject of privilege comes up, and it drives me crazy and the arguers never seem to get it. You just outlined it so clearly. Thanks!

  136. Ergo, insisting that we should all take a moment in a discussion of male privilege to look at how many men have less overall power than we do is beside the point, and very WATM.

    No fucking kidding.

  137. Scuse me, sorry, but, I only have small boobies and flipflops on, so I have no power and am stoopid. What’s ‘WATM’ short for?

  138. Barreca’s article is whiny, bitter and shrill.

    Kanazawa’s article is full of the SCIENTIFIC FACTS, K.

    I wish people would take a step back and realise that they have just illustrated EXACTLY why feminism is still relevant and necessary. A man’s opinion is always based on solid logic and irrefutable proof. A woman’s opinion is nothing but PMS-driven whining.

    I don’t know about you guys, but I came out of Kanazawa’s article with an overwhelming feeling of (well, revulsion, but besides that) “wow, some woman really must have given his fragile ego a kicking” and/or “what a crybaby”.

  139. I’m none too comfortable with white women saying, “Hey, even a prominent black woman said being female is harder than being black.”

    I was sharing a quote that had popped into my head as relevant to the discussion. I thought it would be better to quote the actual words of a black woman than try to offer my white female point of view on a subject I can’t understand fully.

    DRST

  140. That’s fine, DRST. I wasn’t impugning your character, and I’m sorry if it came off that way. I was just saying, I don’t like getting into the question of whether sexism is more insidious than racism, even if we can point to a woman of color who said it is. Lots of other women of color would disagree. And when it’s a white woman bringing up that argument, it smacks of oppression olympics, whether that was your intention or not (and I don’t think it was).

  141. Volcanista, don’t quote the original version of what I said, which contained a total logic fail in the last sentence of the second graf. Obviously, you got what I meant, but my phrasing actually indicated the opposite. :) It’s fixed now.

  142. You know, I’ve read his papers over again, and now they’re pretty laughable. I mean, the scary part is still there… what if some mentally messed-up dude gets ahold of one of these right after being dumped or turned down by a woman and instead of going to therapy for this depression and problems, goes to a gun shop?

    Kind of an odd feeling when something is so ridiculous, it’s dangerous.

  143. Kate Harding wrote:
    “Yes, but most of us will never, ever have male privilege, which is what we’re discussing here. That doesn’t mean some of us as individuals won’t have a better overall social position than some men — it means that every man, of every class, race, ability, etc., benefits from a system of privilege to which women do not have access.”

    THIS. I showed this masterfully written and succinct descriptor of male privilege to my husband AND HE FINALLY GOT IT! I had been trying for months to define male privilege to my husband and fell short of getting the whole point across. A BIG FAT THANK YOU to that kick ass mind of yours!

  144. I disagree substantially with Kanazawa on the point of how power is distributed.

    Let’s grant him that, “men largely control all the money, politics, and prestige.” I can also go with Kanazawa’s assertion that, “[t]hey do, because they have to.” Perhaps I would qualify that with the observation that it is possible that many men believe they have to do all of that controlloing of stuff. Here, though, is where I part ways.

    Men must workworkworkworkwork, you see, because they seek access to automobiles. They are particularly interested in obtaining high-quality, elegant-looking, and conventionally attractive cars. However, *sigh* those cars are so darned expensive!

    Hence, it’s the automobiles that have all of the power in this world and men just live to impress them.

    It’s true! I logicked it Kanazawa style!

  145. Heather#2, if you modify that to include dogs, that’s certainly true in my household! Particularly for the kittens!

  146. I suppose I can modify it to include dogs…even though they’re more of a “male” animal choice /sarcasm

  147. Regarding the “stupid butch feminist” thing, OMG, I better race out and buy some shoes – I’m a clever butch feminist, and I think that means the universe will implode. Or something.

    Also, nice one Kate, about explaining about the privileges we do and don’t have access to. Fuck the whole oppression olympics thing, but let’s also not be ridiculous about “hey, some of oppressed group X are actually doing quite nicely”. And so?

  148. I didn’t have time to read all the comments, so sorry if I repeat something that has already been said, but:
    Even though attractive women are more likely to have more influence compared to unattractive women – men are the ones, who decide which woman is attractive and which is not. And thereby *men* have the power to decide, whom they want to listen to (occasionally) and who is completely worhtless.

  149. @November, this is a really good point. I know Kate has written about the subjectivity of attractiveness in other places, but it’s especially relevant here.

  150. When you google the word “douchehound” this is the 3rd hit after “Urban Dictionary.” Which means… Mr. Kanazawa is not by definition a douchehound, but is, in fact, /the/ definition of a douchehound.

    Heh.

  151. I think my usage of the word “douchehound,” written and spoken, has more than tripled since I started regularly reading SP. Dan Savage and “santorum” have got nothing on you, Kate Harding. :)

  152. When you google the word “douchehound” this is the 3rd hit after “Urban Dictionary.” Which means… Mr. Kanazawa is not by definition a douchehound, but is, in fact, /the/ definition of a douchehound.

    That’s beautiful. It’s the 9th result for “Satoshi Kanazawa”, which makes me happy.

    The 6th result is this, which discusses Kanazawa’s “research” which “shows” that “African states [are] poor and suffer chronic ill-health because their populations [are] less intelligent than people in richer countries”. YOU GUYS. IT’S ISN’T COLONIALISM, DISEASE, FAMINE OR EXPLOITATION, IT’S TOTALLY THEIR OWN FAULT.

    In conclusion, this guy is racist, sexist, and stupid. SCIENTIST FAIL. Evo Psych really is a joke field, isn’t it?

  153. Caitlin, that gets me wondering… Are there other areas of human endeavor that can be rendered into jokes by adding “evolutionary”? Like evo… architecture? (“Cupolas help you REPRODUCE or else nobody would have them on their houses, and that’s why cupolas are GOOD and not EVIL!”)

  154. Caitlin: Our man Kanazawa needs to enroll in Anth-101 to learn about political economy.

    A Sarah: Evo-autos. Bench seated vehicles that give you somewhere to lay out and get busy. Cash for Clunkers, with its pro-bucket seat focus will cause a catastrophic population decline.

    Evo-oo Rachel Ray’s olive oil that lowers your cholesterol, raises your life expectancy and helps you reproduce.

    I’d also expect that spires, with their thrusting phallic outline would also be good for reproduction. Especially since they are so often attached to cathedrals, and cathedrals have bench seats (see: evo-autos).

  155. Evo literary history: Dudes write books in order to get laid. Women write books because they are deviant whores. OH WAIT THAT’S JUST PRE-1960S LITERARY HISTORY

  156. LOL AnthroK8 and Sweet Machine!

    Ooh! I’ve got one. What about evo coffee? It doesn’t just get you wired, it gets you hard-wired. [groans, ducks tomatoes]

  157. FWIW, there’s at least one actual evo-psych person on the feministing thread about this douchenozzle who is lol no-ing the article. But that’s just one person. Clearly this dude is either respected enough that not many evo psych people disagree, or he’s such a wackjob that no one reputable is bothering to refute his article. I’m hoping for the latter.

  158. I like ‘evo psyche’ (which can mean a lot of things really) quite a bit. Not much that you get on the web (which is usually along the lines of ‘see?! this study with a sample size of 167 PROVES what we’ve been saying all along that only women with ring fingers shorter than their pointers are PERFECT 10s, the cavemen thought so too!!!), but I’ve read a lot wonderful books. And I do not believe in the blank slate academic vision of humanity. I believe human nature has many biological components, and I believe there are innate gender differences (on a spectrum, where there’s room for everyone and most of us are closer to the middle than either end).

    Hope that’s not controversial to say here! Despite this I love SP, and I consider myself an agitator on the behalf of the FA movement.

    And I think this guy is wrong, and an ass.

  159. I may be chiming in a bit late, but as a *real* evolutionary biologist (uh, sorry, legit evo psych folks, if you’re out there), I can assure you that this is a total FAIL from the evo perspective, in addition to the zoology FAIL that MissPrism already noted. Like – Kanazawa seems to be referring to a model of mating behavior which is called “resource defense” but not using the jargon, and making totally asinine assumptions to plug into the model, then glossing over that little detail. And his discussion of the whole “oh, the poor sad mens who die with no babies” left something to be desired. Like, reasons to choose that model over others (the mice I study might have that happen, but they’re spectacularly different from humans), what parameter values he didn’t explain for the math behind the model…technical stuff that I won’t impose upon you here, plus the crime of using imprecise language and using the word “control.” (Really? Control??)

    While I totally understand the outrage about his using the term “welfare” – and completely disagree with his premise, on the basis that human behavior does affect the way we act within the evolutionary game – he seems to be attempting to reference the evolutionary concept of “fitness,” and there is *some* legitimacy to what he’s implying. Just not the way he seems to mean; it’s something I would red pen the hell out of if I got it from a student.

    Bonnie: I like the idea of applying evolutionary biology to psychology, too. Unlike you, however, I’ve never seen anything represented as evo psych that doesn’t reveal ignorance or abuse of evolutionary biology on the part of the author. I’d love to know what you’ve read and liked, because I don’t have a lot of time these days to actively search out non-work related science! :-)

  160. “but I said, because ugly girls are the only ones who should kill themselves, right? He replied back, well, I call it like I see it. God bless his soul if we ever work together”

    Next time It says something like that, whip out your cell (into which you’ve programmed the number for a nearby optometrist) and checkbook, call, inquire about the cost of an eye exam, write a check to the optomotrist with a note in the memo field saying the check is for It’s eye exam, hand the check to It and tell It to go get Its eyes checked.

  161. Let’s be honest. By his definition of power. cat and kids have all of it.

    I agree 100%.

    Something tells me this guy would think that I’m a trans guy because I made an “ugly” girl. -___-

    And about gay guys being badasses: I think he’d say that gay guys are really women, and there’s a “man” and a “woman” in a gay relationship. *headdesk* Well, there goes my quest for a date…

    I ID as a gay guy and a feminist, and this shit makes me want to throw things.

    In my personal experience, guys who think women are more powerful than they are can’t quite get over the influence of Mommy.

  162. this kind of thinking always struck me as a kind of megalomania. this man seems absolutely unable to understand that other people function alongside him and have lives, wants, needs, interests, of their own. That successful human engagement requires the ability to recognise another person has the same perception of themself as an autonomous being as you have of yourself.
    It this man wants something, and can’t have it, then the person who won’t give him what he wants must have ‘power’. Because he (personally) can’t have what he wants, when he wants it,someone else is ‘controlling’ him.

    isnt this actually a developmental stage in toddlers? or in adolescence?

  163. According to her, money makes women unhappy.

    me: WHAT?! I got a raise? FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK. Do I have to quit this job and go back to McDonalds?

    And really, without money, how and I like, going to buy all of my, like, shoes!

  164. God, I hate fuckheads like this, they give evo-psych a bad name

    What most evolutionary psychologists do not take into account is that we do not live in hunter-gatherer societies anymore. We haven’t for a LONG-ASS TIME, son. A more realistic approach is not “HOMG CAVEMEN!!!1 MEN R BETTAR” but rather “this is a basic human drive, perhaps this is why people act so fuckheaded.” It’s an explanation, not a goddamn excuse. I hear that as an excuse for cheating so much “WELL CAVEMEN HAD BABIES WITH MULTIPLE CAVE GIRLS! IT’S SCIENCE11″ and it’s moronic.

    Also, something Kanazawa refuses to take into account: WOMEN HAVE SEX DRIVE TOO. Women want BABIES, buddy. It’s not like you have to drag her into bed by her hair. With the ratio of women to men about 1:1, women do NOT exercise this “power” over men. If they do, it’s balanced by the sexual power men exert over women, then tipped unfairly by the political power men exert over women.

    If you think solely in terms of cavemen, you’re a caveman. Seriously.

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