biological predisposition

A Sense of Ownership

When I was studying behavioral psychology there was a point when I came across this phenomenon called the Endowment Effect. A friend showed me this video recently and it reminded me of when I’d studied it.

It’s really fascinating how early our sense of ownership develops. There is a school of thought (one I happen to agree with) that this need for ownership is an innate part of out psychological firmware – it’s something we’re born with. We value things more highly once we believe we own something. It makes perfect sense that this would a selected-for part of our evolution. Individuals that possessed this Endowment Effect, theoretically, might have been more adaptable to their surroundings by having something on hand that would aid in their survival at the cost of a competitor. For early man this was likely to be physical tools, but this Endowment Effect would also extend to our progeny and long-term female partners – more on this later.

By extension, our belongings literally become a part of us. This is observable even on a neurological level. Furthermore, our belongings have an essence that becomes unique to us. In other words, we wont settle for (even exact) imitations of our stuff even when they are exact duplicates.

As you might expect from a TED video, the bias towards making this ownership dynamic one of being a bug, rather of a feature, of human development is evident. The new-agey narrative goes like this – if we’re ever to reach the utopian state of egalitarian equalism the Village would have us believe in, we need to somehow unlearn this innate Endowment Effect we evolved to hold. This anti-materialist sentiment is part of a larger socialist/collectivist message that seeks to disempower us by convincing us that this connection to our things is innately bad. Issues of socialism, communism, collectivism, capitalism, etc. are beyond the scope of this blog, but it’s important to consider the drive behind this ‘anti-materialism’ push and how it affects our sense of ownership in intersexual dynamics.

I think it’s interesting that we have a part of our psyches that evolved for ownership; a part of our nature that is decidedly unegalitarian.

If you’re ever read Dawkin’s book, The Selfish Gene, you kind of get a clearer picture of it. Selfish, self-concerned, organisms tend to survive better than overly altruistic or egalitarian ones. Now before you tell me, “On no Rollo, Bonobos are the peacenik, free loving hippy example of egalitarianism in the wild” have a read of The Naked Bonobo and you’ll understand how deliberately false that impression is. If anything Bonobos are far better examples of the more visceral side of Hypergamy in humans. Self-interest is the driver of a great many survival instincts and adaptations in all animals.

Getting back to humans here, combine that evolved, adaptive, selfishness with a hindbrain level, intrinsic sense for ownership – one in which we feel as if it has a direct connection to ourselves – and you can see what social constructivists and equalitarians are trying to undo in humans. If you watch today’s video you’ll better understand this deep connection we have with the things we, selfishly, consider our own. There is a neurological connection between our sense of self and our things.

I’ve mentioned the concept of ego-investment in our belief systems many times throughout my past essays. Briefly, ego-investment is phenomenon of being so intrinsically connected with our beliefs and ideologies that they become part of our personalities. So, to attack the belief is to, literally, attack the person. In a similar fashion the connections we apply to our things also become (to varying degrees) part of who we are. In essence we invest our egos into the things we consider ours – and the greater the effort, cost or the applied significance involved in getting those things the greater the injury is to the self when they are lost, destroyed, damaged or stolen.

In the video there is also a mention of how original items are more valued than an exact copy of those items. Again, this is part of the evolutionary side of humans investing their egos into those things. There is a limbic level need to know that these items are our things because only those things somehow contain the essence of us. Also in the video it’s postulated that the higher price of common items owned by celebrities we admire are a cost we’re willing to pay because we believe part of that celebrity’s essence is somehow contained in that item.

Why is it that we evolved to place such importance in knowing that some thing is ours, and only that thing is ours? Why do we, sometimes obsessively, need to imbue that thing with the essence of us? Why is this (apparently) part of our evolved mental firmware?

The Need to Know

I’m going to speculate here a bit. I think a strong argument can be made for men’s intrinsic need to verify his own paternity being linked to the Endowment Effect. In fact, I’d suggest that this ownership need can extend to not only a man’s children, but also to the women (even potential women) in his life. This isn’t to say women didn’t also evolve this sense – women display the Endowment Effect as much as men – but I’m going to approach this from the male side for the moment.

The video refers to this compulsive need to verify the authenticity of a thing as ‘magical thinking’, but is it really so magical? I think the writer and researcher would have us think this dynamic is silly because it’s ‘just a thing’ right? We shouldn’t place such a high degree of importance on a bicycle or an old guitar. That’s just vulgar materialism, right? Granted, some things, heirlooms maybe, can have sentimental value, but ultimately even those might well be replaceable too. It shouldn’t be so important to know something is magically your own.

Unless the thing that’s your own is your only shot at passing something of yourself into the future.

The butter knife that Elvis used to spread peanut butter on his peanut butter and banana sandwiches could be anything you can find at Walmart, but if his ‘essence‘ was in someway invested in that knife (and anyone cared to know about it) that part of Elvis might go on into perpetuity. That seems like childish magical thinking until you realize that the only part of the average person’s essence that might actually do this is their children. And until just recently, evolutionarily speaking, there wasn’t any completely dependable way to know if a man was 100% invested in his own ‘things’ – his progeny. His kids would carry on his essence, so in our evolved past it made sense to be obsessive-compulsive about the things that we’re one’s own.

As I stated, women also exhibit this effect as well, and I’d argue for much of the same reasons. Though, in none of the research related in this video was this Endowment Effect controlled for by sex – at least none that I’m aware of. Again, this is conjecture, but I would think that with the intrinsic certainty a woman has in knowing a child is her own, and the collectivist communal nature of women in hunter-gatherer society from which we developed, it might be that women place a higher ‘endowed’ value on different things than men do. I think this effect may be more pronounced in an era where women are almost unilaterally in control of Hypergamy.

I recently saw a video of a fertility doctor who had either used his own sperm to fertilize women’s eggs, or completely random samples to father about 40 children. The women, the children (mostly female) were absolutely aghast that he was their father or some donor who they would never know had contributed to half their DNA. The idea that the selection and control of Hypergamy was taken from them was worthy of the death penalty. Yet this is exactly the control we expect men to relinquish in this age. We will pat men on the back for abandoning their evolved instinct to ascertain paternity. We’ll tell a man he’s a hero for wifing up a single mother and “stepping up to be a father” to a child he didn’t sire and at the same time pretend that father’s are superfluous. We’ll change ‘Father’s Day’ to ‘Special Person’s Day’ and tell men they’re insecure in their masculinity for preferring a son or daughter of his own – but try to remove that control from a woman, try to tell her that Hypergamous choice wasn’t hers to make and it’s tantamount to rape.

“She was never yours, it was just your turn.”

I think it was my fellow Red Man Group friend Donovan Sharpe who coined this phrase. I might be wrong. I’ve read this around the usual Red Pill Reddit subs and other manosphere forums, but it wasn’t until last month (July) when I read yet one more story about a husband whose wife was leaving him and was in the process of Zeroing him out when he decided to kill her, their three kids and then himself. You can read the Twitter reaction to this here:

Naturally women were appalled at the deaths of the wife and kids, as they should be. Pre-divorce women will prep months in advance for their new singleness. Often they’ll check out of the marriage and live without any real connection to their, usually Beta, Blue Pill conditioned, husband who languishes in this Blue Pill hell for the duration it takes his wife to establish a new mental persona and finds a way to exit the marriage. She’s already gone from the marriage, but the typical Blue Pill husband believes that he is the source of her discontent and resorts to anything he can to ‘keep things fresh’ or ‘rekindle the old flame’ that a feminine-primary popular culture tells him should be his responsibility. Unfortunately, this guy’s situation is typical of middle aged men today, and I honestly believe is the source that drives suicides and murder-suicides in this demographic. This man was going to be Zeroed Out and he knew it was coming.

That’s when I thought, ‘Was this guy’s turn with her just over?’ Was it as simple as that? If you read this couple’s story there wasn’t a history of him losing his mind. If anything Matthew Edwards was a pretty dedicated and invested father. No history of depression, suicidal tendencies or abuse; just another average frustrated chump who built a life for himself likely based on his Blue Pill conditioning.

But his turn was over and he likely believed the soul-mate myth. How was he supposed to live with out her?

The fem-stream media offers up their standard pablum – “Misogynistic society teaches men that they’re entitled to women’s bodies. Men need to be taught that they don’t own women.” or something similar that goes entirely against a man’s evolved Endowment Effect. What exactly does a man get to think is his own if not his family? When a woman finds out that her Hypergamous choice was made for her by a fertility clinic doctor rather than herself they’re out for blood – again, rightfully so. Then why are we surprised that men, particularly men in Matthew Edwards demographic, resort to murder and suicide when faced with losing everything they’ve invested themselves in.

Now this week we see another, almost identical, tragedy in Colorado this week.

And once again we have what looks like another guy being Zeroed out and another quadruple homicide. How man more of these murder-suicides (or just murders in this case) is it going to take before we collectively see the commonalities in all of them?

I had a conversation with several women in the wake of this latest tragedy and every one of them couldn’t wrap their head around why the guy would kill his kids? They could understand why he might kill his wife – the assumption being her unborn child was sired by guy who wasn’t him – but not his kids. I think this is interesting in the light of how men and women approach paternity/maternity and the Endowment Effect. The best answer I could come up with is that a man doesn’t want that part of him to go on into the future without him. The idea that his kids bear some of his essence and he would rather erase that essence entirely than live or kill himself with the knowledge that his children wouldn’t have him in their lives. Killing a wife might be the result of an uncontrolled rage, but killing your kids takes premeditation – there has to be some point to the act, some reasoning (corrupted as it may be) that made sense to him.

The Strategic Pluralism Theory is from a research study by Dr. Martie Haselton:

According to strategic pluralism theory (Gangestad & Simpson, 2000), men have evolved to pursue reproductive strategies that are contingent on their value on the mating market. More attractive men accrue reproductive benefits from spending more time seeking multiple mating partners and relatively less time investing in offspring. In contrast, the reproductive effort of less attractive men, who do not have the same mating opportunities, is better allocated to investing heavily in their mates and offspring and spending relatively less time seeking additional mates.

From a woman’s perspective, the ideal is to attract a partner who confers both long-term investment benefits and genetic benefits. Not all women, however, will be able to attract long-term investing mates who also display heritable fitness cues. Consequently, women face trade-offs in choosing mates because they may be forced to choose between males displaying fitness indicators or those who will assist in offspring care and be good long-term mates (Gangestad & Simpson, 2000).

The commonalities in every one of these murder-suicides is a Blue Pill conditioned, Beta husband who by all indications was playing by the First Set of Books. By all indications these men would fit into the second type of man mention in Strategic Pluralism Theory – they did everything right, they played by the rules, they did their best to invest themselves in their mates and offspring and likely believed they’d earned some Relational Equity from it. But then, their turn was over with their wives. For whatever reason they were faced with a complete loss, a Zeroing Out, of everything they believed they owned. The things they invested so much of their lives in, the things they worked so hard for, the things that retained his ‘essence’, the things they invested their egos in were all being taken away from them. When faced with such a reality men tend to look at only two options; remake and rebuild what they had in the knowledge that this too might be taken from them, or they can simply erase all themselves and all the ‘things’ they were attached too.

Transitioning

As most of my readers know I’m presently editing the final draft of my third book. A very large part, almost a third, of this new book will be dedicated to Red Pill Parenting. I’ve written several series-posts about parenting from a Red Pill perspective and I felt it was an important enough topic to deserve a category itself in my sidebar links. I’ve expanded significantly upon these essays in the book as well as adding more material and some general advice for Red Pill aware men in their parenting efforts.

One thing I’m asked of from men who are Red Pill aware fathers is what to look out for and what to apply themselves to in raising a son or daughter using a Red Pill Lens. While prospectively it will give women some parenting insights, I’ve written this section with the intent of informing men about what they can expect from a feminine-primary social bent on conditioning a man’s children to assimilate to a Blue Pill mindset.

Without giving too much away, I’ve tried to express the dangers of a system of feminine-primary acculturation that contributes to what we term ‘Blue Pill Conditioning’ in the manosphere. What defines a ‘Blue Pill‘ mindset means different things to different men, but what conditions him to literally think, and invest his ego into that feminine-primary identification is initiated at a very early age. One thing I think gets lost on guys becoming Red Pill aware is just how much of his very natural-feeling sense of self is the result of a conditioning that’s taken the better part of his lifetime to develop in him.

The main reason I began developing a Red Pill parenting dialog is because it’s vitally necessary for Red Pill fathers – really any father with a sense of conventional masculinity – to come to terms with how his sons’ and daughters’ upbringing will be defined by what I call ‘The Village’ in the book. I coined this from the popular meme that “it takes a village to raise a child”, and the Village we have today is one that is dead set on instilling and normalizing a state of deliberate gender confusion – and hopefully perpetuate that state into a person’s adulthood.

The Village

This Village is a catch-all term and I mean to have it represent all of the influences a child receives in its upbringing that contributes to its Blue Pill sense of self. This includes the influences of media, popular entertainment, academia, their pre and grammar school education, popular culture that actively seeks to instill its own ideological base, etc. These are fairly recognizable sources of the Village’s systemic influence, but it’s also important to understand that this influence will be reinforced by your child’s peers, their Village family and relatives.

‘The Village’ will raise your kids if you don’t. You will be resisted, you will be ridiculed, you will be accused of every thought-crime to the point of being dragged away to jail for imparting Red Pill awareness to them (in the future I expect it to be equated with child abuse). The Village will teach your boys from the most impressionable ages (5 years old) to loath their maleness, to feel shame for being less perfect than girls and to want to remake their gender-identity more like girls – to the point that transitioning their gender to girls’ will be the norm.

The Village will raise your daughters to perpetuate the same cycle that devalues conventional masculinity, the same cycle that considers a father’s presence as superfluous and their sacrifices as granted expectations. It will raise your daughters to over-inflate their sense of worth with unmerited confidence at the expense of boys as their foils. It will teach them to openly embrace Hypergamy as their highest personal authority (publicly and privately) and to disrespect anything resembling masculinity to be less than some silly anachronism or reverse it into being all about men’s insecurities.

The good news is that for all of these efforts in social engineering, the Feminine Imperative is still confounded by basic biology and the psychological firmware evolved into us over millennia. That basic root reality is your greatest advantage as a father. If there’s one underlying truth upon which to base your parenting it’s this; children are still motivated by evolved influences that are relatively predictable. Begin from the root truth that we evolved our psychology and our behaviors from intergender complementarity that made us the preeminent species on this planet. It takes a global Village to distort this by teaching failed notions of egalitarian equalism.

Useful Tools – Blue Pill Fathers

Although the Village would assert its influence to be the primary one in your child’s life, and although it would have women believe that father’s are both necessary when convenient and superfluous, father’s are not without their uses. The Feminine Imperative (by way of the social system of the Village) needs fathers to help reinforce its feminine-primary influence in their children’s lives. Thus, Blue Pill fathers must also carry the feminine-primary water in their parenting. They must be taught to believe that parenting a daughter is preferable to parenting a son:

I realize that everything I could do with a boy I can do with my daughters (i.e. play basketball, teach them how to throw a punch, and play in the dirt). Yes, I know that’s a big fat “duh” for many of you, but I’m a recovering knucklehead with minimal relapses, so please humor me. And yes, I’m going to teach them much more than those three things – but I promise you that I will teach them those three things.

The Feminine Imperative needs men to constantly reaffirm the fallacies of egalitarian equalism, but it is The Village that needs a father to instill them into the minds of their own flesh and blood as well as those of other fathers. The meme is always a pretense of gender-neutral equity, but the latent purpose is one of devaluing the very existence of boys, and, by extension, conventional masculinity.

And this is the crux of the effort to enlist fathers in the system of the Village; masculinity and maleness are always portrayed as problems to be solved – the solution always being more feminine identification. The main goal of the Village is to destroy and redefine conventional masculinity in a way that only benefits the feminine.

I realize that being “girly” is just a myth. What does that mean, anyway? Would my kid be less girly if she dressed up as Spider-Man for Halloween instead of a princess? (and that’s exactly what she did, by the way). Would she be less girly if she wanted to tackle little boys on the football field instead of taking ballet classes? Not to me.

This is precisely the degree of gender obfuscation the Village requires fathers to endorse. The squid ink here is the idea that masculine and feminine, boys & girls, male and female are all one, undifferentiated whole; in fact the old ideas of gender differences that brought the human race to where it is today, we are taught, were nothing more than “myths”. The underlying note is that girls are the functional equals of boys, but girls have the social and sexual advantage of being female.

The social narrative of the Village, the one it needs fathers to internalize and parrot back, is one of Fempowerment, but simultaneously one of male disempowerment. The idea then evolves into a sense of conventional masculinity being a defect of men; men are just unperfected women who are in need of women (or their daughters’) innate correction.

The idea here is that men with daughters make for better men” as defined by the Feminine Imperative and approved by The Village. What Red Pill fathers need to acknowledge in this that their sons will be taught that their maleness is inherently flawed. All of the attributes and evolved instincts that make him a boy will be connected with his masculinity being “toxic”.

“Toxic Masculinity” or “Hyper-masculinity” are common tropes in the Village. We’ve gotten to a point that any form of traditional, conventionally masculine behaviors are now equated with a character flaw in men. So thoroughly has the Village distorted the old books definition of manhood that anything resembling a characteristically masculine behavior is, by default, an act of ‘hyper’ or “over-the-top” masculinity. This, of course, makes characterizing those acts as toxic, or ridiculous.

The Preferred Gender

In my essay, Environmental Stresses I added this quote from the book The Red Queen:

Contrary to popular belief a preference for boys over girls is not universal. Indeed, there is a close relationship between social status and the degree to which sons are preferred. Laura Betzig of the University of Michigan noticed that, in feudal times, lords favored their sons, but peasants were more likely to leave possessions to daughters. While their feudal superiors killed or neglected daughters or banished them to convents, peasants left them more possessions: Sexism was more a feature of elites than of the unchronicled masses.

[…]Lower down the social scale, daughters are preferred even today: A poor son is often forced to remain single, but a poor daughter can marry a rich man. In modern Kenya, Mukogodo people are more likely to take daughters than sons to clinics for treatment when they are sick, and therefore more daughters than sons survive to the age of four. This is rational of the Mukogodo parents because their daughters can marry into the harems of rich Samburu and Maasai men and thrive, whereas their sons inherit Mukogodo poverty. In the calculus of Trivers-Willard, daughters are better grandchildren-production devices than sons.

These quotes are a part of a much more in depth look at how both environmental and social stresses contribute to a ‘preferred gender’ dynamic in both animal populations and human social structure. As I was reviewing this book recently it hit me how western cultures have blatantly been endorsing ‘female’ as the preferred gender for the past 60-70 years now.

I realize this assertion grates on popular culture’s sensibilities when it comes to gender, but as I stated in that essay, at no other time in human history has it been more advantageous to be female than today. Whether you want to argue that assertion from socioeconomic, education, gender identity, social ‘progress’ or any other metric, women in this era enjoy a condition that places their sex as the primary one in terms of social advantage. Women today live in a social condition that advantages, ensures their relative successes and directly or indirectly provisions for their personal security while simultaneously seeking to handicap being male and ridiculing the conventionally masculine.

In many a prior essay I’ve made the assertion that this effort in feminizing boys – in “perfecting” them with feminization – has been a long effort in social engineering. And while I still believe this is true, I think that in recent years the adaptive response to this preferred gender dynamic for Blue Pill fathers, men and boys is now an effort in socially engineering boys to imagine their gender identity as being transitionable to that of girls. Needles to say this push for gender self-reassignment has been embraced by the Village.

Olivia loves Disney’s Frozen princesses, all things sparkly, bright tights and ballet. During her family’s Cuban vacation last summer, she danced in the children’s “mini-disco” before the evening shows, twirling and leaping across the stage. One night another guest turned to her parents, exclaiming, “Your daughter is the girliest girl I’ve ever seen!”

Olivia was born a boy.

She “socially transitioned” from male to female, in nursery school last year. She was four years old.

Today, she attends kindergarten at a Montreal primary school. Only her teachers and the school board know she is transgender, for now.

Olivia (not her real name to protect her identity) is part of a growing phenomenon that is being celebrated but which is also raising strong emotions: an increasing number of children as young as preschoolers appearing at gender identity-clinics across the country, convinced they are of the opposite sex.

The new push to normalize transgender acceptance relies solely on the presumption that gender identity is a social construct rather than influenced by biological, and evolved psychological dynamics inherent in both sexes. The idea again comes back to the egalitarian presumption of a blank-slate equalism and a rejection of gender as a binary determination. Yet in over 90% of transgender identity shifts we see it is boys who opt to “become” female in their self-reassignment. Left to their own non-abstract decision making – and reinforced by Blue Pill parents and the Village – boys will, in the binary, shift to a female / feminine gender identity in overwhelmingly greater numbers than girls shifting to a male / masculine identity.

I would argue that this greater transgender preference for boys is a direct result of the Preferred Gender dynamic and reinforced by the Village conditioning boys for it while normalizing the idea of it in a larger cultural respect. This is the next step in cultural feminization of boys and men that began in the touchy-feely days of men needing to “get in touch with their feminine sides.”

It is no longer enough for boys just to be educated in a feminine-correct manner. It is no longer enough to teach them to despise the gender they were born into, “hoping their penises will fall off”, and it’s no longer enough to condition them to defer to girl’s perfectness. Boys must literally be transitioned to be girls from as young an age as 4 years old.

This is the degree to which the Village and the Feminine Imperative will go to condition future men into a Blue Pill mindset. I outline this in the upcoming book, but this is vitally important for Red Pill fathers to understand because these will be the ‘boys’ they may eventually need to mentor and unplug from their very early psychological damage. Many voices in the manosphere call this damage child abuse and it’s easy to understand why; this damage works on a boy’s most intimate part of his sense of self.

Red Pill fathers need to recognize this perversion of conventional masculinity for what it is and protect their sons (as well as daughters) from it while still anticipating the fall that will result from the “men” this re-engineering of gender will create.

 

The Warrior Gene – Is Alpha Genetic?

I held off on posting this video because it’s about 45 minutes long and I figured most readers would probably want to watch it at their leisure (rather than on their ‘valuable’ work time), but it’s well worth the investment.

Any time I write about defining Alpha or detail my interpretations of Alpha as a dynamic it’s always cause for heated debate. People are always conflicted on the issues of what biological, attitude or character traits makes a Man Alpha, and as I’ve detailed before there’s always a want to force Alpha into a definition that would best describe ourselves.

Beyond this there’s the question of what makes a Man, naturally (genetically?) an Alpha, and what factors make him a learned Alpha or a contextual Alpha as situations warrant. I’ve covered all of these interpretations in the past year, but it wasn’t until I watched this episode of National Geographic Explorer that I became aware of the concrete genetic evidence of (or at least a genetic indicator) Alpha. I’ll try not to be too much of a spoiler here, because watching this video through a manosphere, Alpha-Beta filter should be enough to give most of my readers a new insight to how Alpha can be defined.

Biological Determinism

For a lot of guys subscribing to the idea that Alpha is built upon manly virtue and noble intent, your first impression of a biological Alpha-determinant will likely be one of disbelief, or incredulity. Watch the video to the end. You’ll probably come up with rationalizations about how a biological predisposition for violence does not an Alpha make, and how humans aren’t slaves to their biology or instinct. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the end of the show.

That said, while watching this here are some things to think about:

  • Is Alpha both nature and nurture?
  • How does this propensity for violence and /or a biologically motivated dynamism agree with our present defining of Alpha?
  • Does an ability, or lack thereof, to channel this natural (genetic) impulse toward constructive or destructive ends change the definition of Alpha?
  • How does the idea of a biologically defined Alpha evolutionarily agree with what we understand about Hypergamy? (War Brides, the attraction of violence, rape fantasy, etc.)
  • Can Alpha be learned and internalized or faked in the long term convincingly?
  • Is genuine Alpha status earned or determined, or perhaps both? (don’t answer until you watch the end of the video)

This study has given me a lot more to think about in terms of how we define Alpha, but it correlates well with my prior Alpha concepts. Alpha is a mindset, not a demographic.

I will do a followup on this post once readers have had the chance to view and opine.