A lot of Americans don’t know the real title of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo— it is actually Män som hatar kvinnor, Men who hate women. This was pointed out to me by a swedish friend, who once sent me a copy of the original paperback.
Steig Larsson refused to let the Swedish publishers change the name, or shrink the size of Lisbeth Salanders tattoo, but many books have their titles changed for American consumption. Richard Morgan’s Black Man was retitled as Thirteen (because we are racists) and J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philospher’s Stone was transmuted to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (because we are stupid).
One of the things I learned in my brief sojourn among The Rationalists is there really are a LOT of men who hate women on line. SSC commenters don’t expend “weirdness points” as much as they expend socio-cultural pariah points. I was horrified to see “rational” discussion of alt-right talking points like ukranian mail order brides, “white genocide”, and that liberal support of immigration means liberal women want to have sexual congress with virile young muslim males, and by implication, reject white men. Of course, a lot of this is glossed with a jokey facade, but I think there is a depth of truth in alt-right discourse attacking women– and a quite shocking depth of actual misogyny. By allowing normalization of extreme toxic ideology rationalist sites like SSC and Less Wrong encourage “treading into alt-right discourse”, as Quillette magazine pointed out. These are just crazypants red team conspiracy theories.
Sticking in NorCal, it is surprising to see no mention of LessWrong (ed. and SSC) and the “rationalist” semicult, which is a Tumblr-style identitarian support group that nonetheless often ends up treading into alt-right discursive and political territory;
Amazingly, in the rush to decry right/left politics rationalists have have wholly embraced their own particular identity– that of a male ASD-positive hyper-IQ ubermensch. Scott Alexander does many surveys of his commentariat, and the average SSC commentator is male (90%) and ASD positive (75%). I was originally drawn to SSC because I thought I could discover conservatives to interact with– I naively hoped to reprise Hoschild’s book about “scaling the empathy wall” with rural Lousiana Tea Party patriots. The first problem I encountered was there are no conservatives anymore– conservatives have become “cucks”– or vanishingly few that will admit it. They have changed their names– to “libertarians” or to “classic liberals”. I dealt with this by just lumping the alt-right, libertarians, tea partiers, and classic liberals on the basis of conservative tendency– basically, you are how you vote. Its interesting to note the evolution of Mike Enoch from libertarian to hard alt-right. Another interesting point from that article is that Enoch concealed his real identity “because of his wife”. Since the doxxing Enoch’s wife has left him and sued for divorce.
Why did he work so hard, for so many years, to keep his normal life separate from his online alt-right persona? “My wife,” he said without hesitation. “For a long time, I wanted to have it both ways, by just being anonymous on the Internet.
My other problem was that the more time I spent around these people the more I genuinely disliked them. When I was much younger I thought education + IQ == liberal tendency. I now think there must be a biological basis that drives two different phenotypes– as in red/blue brain hypothesis, since we are well on the way to classic Sewell Wright pseudo-speciation in the US. And that is the problem. The coming liberal majority is real for the implacable reasons of differential reproductive fitness and mortality. Only one tribe is adding reps–converts and offspring– this federalist article on assortative mating is true.
But I was still astonished by the rampant misogyny. The rationalists are just more subtle about it à la Googlebro James Damore. I think a lot of the hatred towards women and girls expressed at 4chan and r/the Donald (and the more stealthy variant among the rationalists) originates with something I think of as the Big Bang Theory complex. The extremely popular sitcom has given young male americans false expectations over the last 10 years. The idea that male geeks and nerds will wind up married to beautiful Kaley Cuoco types is a fantasy. As related in the Mike Enoch example above, the alt-right does understand their memes are socio-culturally toxic, especially to women. It just seems they can’t help themselves.
The whole thing makes me terribly sad. Lets face it– the “tiki Nazis” arent getting dates anytime soon. Would you date one of these guys?
Yet the tiki Nazis believe they are wholly deserving of female attention. PROTIP: this is not the way to get it.