MISANDRY – And False Flag Operations

Jack Donovan has a good discussion of The Good Man Project and what went wrong with it. Basically it had a birth defect – it was started and formed by feminists assuming they had some special insight into gender issues and thus able to speak on men’s issues – who have tried to preach to men on how to be good, imagining that they were engaging with men’s issues.

He identifies a core problem in gender discussions generally, that discussions of men and men’s issues invariably become a discussion of what men can do to please women in some way or other, because under the patriarchal assumptions that feminism is based on, an issue isn’t a problem until it affects women.

Anyway, go read his post and ponder it.

I understand he is some kind of bad odor with the GMP crowd, and I can understand why. A non-compliant man is always going to end up sleeping on the couch, or at least they will try.

In this connection it might interest you to look at a thread on /r/ladyMRAs. It involves a spat between an MRA named Factory2 and some other MRAs. His style of expressing himself offended some women MRAs. Should be no big deal, the same happens at AVfM all the time, and they deal with it like a speed bump. Well, that’s not how this one went down. Hurt feelings and bewilderment that not everyone agrees that a lady-like style of conversation should be the norm.

The main issue here is gynonormativity so unquestioned and so unnoticed that it cannot be addressed. Factory2 got angry and caustic in a discussion of men’s issues in an MRM space, and that offended some women. Basically their complaint is that a man did not express himself in a female enough style. That’s gynonormativity, and it is spectacularly inappropriate in a space that purports to be about men’s issues. One of those issues is gynonormativity, after all.

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  • debaser71

    spot on! So when is TGMP going to change?

  • Ginkgo

    The women there sem to be making a real effort at men’s issues. Thier feminism is both holding them back, on a methodological level, and pushing them forward, on a moral level. It’s a very interesting experiment, and if it fails it will be dispositive, because no one else could have made a better effort.

    They have had their failures – failing Eagle 34 the way they have was not just wrong, it was stupid. They chased off a lot of men, from a men’s site, in the early days. Giving a platform to man0haters like Marcotte and Schwyzer was a bone-headed mistake they had no reason notto see was wrong form the beginning. But they cleaned house and have started off in a better direction, even though they still make mistakes.

  • debaser71

    Fair enough but IMO the name “good man” is also fail. To me, that attracts women, especially those with an opinion of what a good man is. Also, IMO, Tom Matlock (founder) writes some stuff that just turns me off. As an example…

    http://goodmenproject.com/good-is-good/not-a-joke-why-do-our-boys-keep-up-the-mass-shootings/

    “So I am left with the question of what is going on with our boys that they exclusively are prone to the strike to such powerful, insane, derranged, and hurtful forces that would cause some tiny fraction to come up with a plan to go into a school or a movie theater or an isolated island to kill as many innocent children as possible?”

    So, for me, it’s still a “no” on TGMP.

  • Typhonblue

    @ debaser

    Here’s a novel thought.

    Men naturally strive for goodness and when they go wrong that’s a mirror of _what society has done to them_. Toxic masculinity is a reflection of society’s toxic attitudes towards the penis-people.

  • Ginkgo

    db71, like I said, it has a birth defect, and that name is part of it.

    TB, toxic femininity works the same way. This society does everything it can to deform little girls into the entitlement princesses. A lot resist and develop a moral sense and a sense of treating everyone decently, but that is a testament to their inherenet goodness, not their upbringing.

  • Thomas

    TGMP not only manages to piss off MRAs but also feminists. They get accused by both sides to belong to the other camp. This really highlights the prevalent partisanship in gender discussions. Either you’re a MRA or a feminists and the other side is the enemy.

    Both Tom Mattlack and Lisa Hickey appear to be nice people. Donovan’s point that a website about men’s issues can’t have a female CEO is juvenile. It’s like ten year old boys putting a “no girls” sign at the door of their tree house. Donovan should be over this by now. What he’s missing is that Mattlack and Hickey both have a business background. TGMP is a business and they make decisions according to this.

    The thing is, feminism is dominating the gender discourse and there are few sane voices outside of feminism. In part because feminists are working actively to wear down everyone who approaches gender from a non-feminist angle. The South African professor , I don’t remember his name, who wrote a book about sexism against men is one example. He either got ignored by feminist or denounced as a misogynist.

    Hiring Noah Brand as a replacement for Schwyzer was a mistake, IMO. I’m reading Ozy’s blog since day one and I never liked Noah’s articles. But quite frankly, Mattlack’s complains about the feminist orientation of his site is at best naïve and at worst dishonest if he hires another chief editors with a strong feminist leaning. After Schwyzer left he could have taken a different direction. But I suspect that the feminism vs. MRM debate is creating a lot of site views. So even if he might not like it it’s good for the business.

    Generally, I don’t believe in female or male only spaces. Maybe with the exception of people who have been severely hurt and don’t feel comfortable speaking up in mixed company, like sexual assault survivors. But I don’t think gender is really the issue. The issue is a willingness to listen to other perspectives and a willingness to engage with others in a civil manner.

  • http://paddybrown.co.uk Patrick Brown

    Ginkgo, you’re far more generous to the GMP than I can be. I checked in there not long after the Aurora shooting, and there were something like half a dozen articles asking why white men did this. Their knee jerk response to the atrocity was not that one, presumably desperately damaged, individual had done something terrible, but that whiteness and maleness had done it.

    I’ve just checked back and there are now a couple of articles pointing out that the good people, including the ones that sacrificed themselves to save their loved ones, outnumbered the bad at Aurora – but they don’t focus on the gender and race of the good guys the way they did the bad guy. They mention “heroes” and “victims” in the article titles, not “men” – even though they are speaking of men – and their skin colour is not mentioned.

    The site is misandrist to the core. They can say bad things about men, but not good things, and for a site supposedly focused on “good men” that’s fairly damning. It’s also evidently racist, for the same reason.

  • dungone

    “The thing is, feminism is dominating the gender discourse and there are few sane voices outside of feminism.”

    Which are the sane voices within it?

  • Clarence

    LOL!

    Good question, dungone.

    To be fair, I think many misandrists are sane, they are just hateful. Same with misogynists.

  • Ginkgo

    Thomas,
    “Donovan’s point that a website about men’s issues can’t have a female CEO is juvenile. It’s like ten year old boys putting a “no girls” sign at the door of their tree house.”

    Oh she can be physically female I agree, but she should be willing to step outside that the way GWW says she does. After gender is a construct, and any good fiath discutant is going to have to set aside every trace of toxic femininity eventually if she is to fully participate, and the same goes for toxic masculinity.

    As for a “No Girls” sign, that is completely reasonable. We need women in this conversation, not girls, and one of the issues is the culture’s refusal to distinguish between the two. it’s both misogyniist and misandrist as hell.

    Patrick,
    I am generous with them, but it is more damning in the nd. this sit the best that feminism can offer to the gender debate, the most fair-minded, the most egalitarian, the most humane and unbigoted it can be. That’s all I’m saying. And I agree with you, that it is just not good enough.

    That race bashing is standard fare for a certia generation. It’s mre than fashionable with them; for them it is just received wisdom, the ever-guilty white man. It’s a form of White Supremacism masquerading as progessive thought, just another form of white racism, which is why it appeals so much to white people, like those posting those articles at GMP. Note that not one of the non-white writers there posted anything like that.

  • Paul

    Well, can’t really say I’m surprised at the way GMP turned out, the majority of their readers are female, after all.

    I’d be curious what percentage of their articles are actually about men. Most of them seem to be schlocky pop culture articles.

  • http://stonerwithaboner.wordpress.com Stoner With a Boner

    http://www.jack-donovan.com/axis/2011/12/mighty-white/

    sorry not a fan of “someone who rubs elbows” with the white nationalists….

    as in, nope this joker IS NOT gonna tell me what it is to be a good man….

  • http://stonerwithaboner.wordpress.com Stoner With a Boner

    this guy seems even less “pro male” than Hugo S or Dave Futrelle….

    http://www.alternativeright.com/main/blogs/virtus/why-not-suicide/

    yeah, I understand a debate for euthanasia, but I don’t read this as such, seems like if a guy can’t succeed in a team or fails at masculinity, then this Donovan character thinks he should “off” himself….

    I’m all for “outspoken” views, but, nope, it’s going too far. This is not an ally to men or a good man in my view….

  • http://stonerwithaboner.wordpress.com Stoner With a Boner

    http://stonerwithaboner.wordpress.com/2012/07/20/oh-crap-i-think-i-found-the-new-inmalafide/

    actually, I think I have waaaaaaay more respect for Ferdinand Bardimu than Tom Matlock–at least you could tell someone to “eff of and die” in the comments section withouts some stupid editor censoring you and saying no more Ad hom attacks…..

  • Druk

    I fully agree with Thomas on the Schwyzer issue. In my opinion, the site deserved all the name-calling and mocking it got before he left, but things turned around dramatically when he was gone. That is, until Brand got put at the helm. Horrible call, though still not as bad as before.

  • Tomek Kulesza

    Seriously, what part of Donovan’s post is a good discussion? Because the only thing of substance i noticed is that he has a problem with men crying, and what he says about it is basically bullshit.

  • dungone

    @Tomek, Donovan has a prescient point to make, even though he makes it crudely.  He is right, because the only men’s issues that feminists recognize are self serving.  They don’t talk about the issues that would make a man cry, but instead focus on how men not crying is an affront to the virtues of feminity.  They have a blanket solution to all men’s issues: be more like women.  Listen to women.  Do what women tell you to do.  That’s about the only thing they understand about men.  The fact is that its been men who have ignored feminists who have pushed the issues forward to the point where even feminists have to start acknowledging they exist so as to not look like oafs.  Its ironic, as Donovan pointed out, that feminists who are vaguely aware of men’s issues owe it completely to men who have raised that awareness, yet they use that very awareness to slander and dismiss those very same men as not caring about those same said issues… before they go into a screed about how men not crying is really about misogyny and that men are only hurting themselves by looking down on women somehow.

  • Ginkgo

    “http://www.jack-donovan.com/axis/2011/12/mighty-white/
    sorry not a fan of “someone who rubs elbows” with the white nationalists….
    as in, nope this joker IS NOT gonna tell me what it is to be a good man….”

    Yeah, eeewwww. Not someone to preach on being a good man, but who better than someone like that to tear into bigots?

  • Eagle34

    Dungone: ” Donovan has a prescient point to make, even though he makes it crudely. He is right, because the only men’s issues that feminists recognize are self serving. They don’t talk about the issues that would make a man cry, but instead focus on how men not crying is an affront to the virtues of feminity.”

    You also missed this point, Dungone:

    Donovan: ““It’s OK to cry and be vulnerable.” Feminists may think that sounds freeing and empowering, and it does to a small minority of men who are really aching for permission to get their sob on. Most men look at that kind of stuff and see public dishonor. We turn our heads because we’re embarrassed for the guys who are making fools of themselves so enthusiastically.”

    So he attacks not only feminists but also men, men who he claims to be supportive of, who cry and are vulnerable.

    And then this:

    Donavan: “If you want a site full of stories from soldiers and prisoners and guys who have real problems — and have found inspirational ways to overcome them — you have to put guys who want that in charge.”

    So according to him, soldiers and prisoners and guys who have real problems count. Nevermind the entire gamut like artists, actors, writers, clerks, whatever.

    This is another reason why I’ve distanced myself from the men’s movement: Guys like Donovan who, on one hand, support males who suffer but only selectively and damn all the rest.

  • Eagle34

    Ginko: “They have had their failures – failing Eagle 34 the way they have was not just wrong, it was stupid.”

    Not completely, Ginko. They didn’t fail me fully.

    My articles are still there, unaltered, unblemished, for all to see.

    I just got tired of being accused of pushing an agenda due to my comments about being bullied and hurt by girls deleted while JackobT and James Landrith are granted the courtesy of a forum even though THEY DO THE SAME THING! Not harping on them. I’m harping on the hypocrisy behind The Good Men Project.

  • dungone

    Donovan: ““It’s OK to cry and be vulnerable.” Feminists may think that sounds freeing and empowering, and it does to a small minority of men who are really aching for permission to get their sob on. Most men look at that kind of stuff and see public dishonor. We turn our heads because we’re embarrassed for the guys who are making fools of themselves so enthusiastically.”

    So he attacks not only feminists but also men, men who he claims to be supportive of, who cry and are vulnerable.

    And then this:

    Donavan: “If you want a site full of stories from soldiers and prisoners and guys who have real problems — and have found inspirational ways to overcome them — you have to put guys who want that in charge.”

    So according to him, soldiers and prisoners and guys who have real problems count. Nevermind the entire gamut like artists, actors, writers, clerks, whatever.

    I’m not going to vouch for what’s really in his head, but I do think that I get the point he was making here. The way I read his arguments, Eagle34, is that “real men” never actually needed to ask feminists for permission to cry. Only a minority of men actually need to be told that it’s okay! And maybe I’m just completely biased because I’m a war veteran, and while that doesn’t make you a “real men,” what it does represent is some of the real problems that actually make real men break down in tears. If you’re in the military, they’ll want you to talk about how vulnerable and weak you were, so long as it fits into their broader agenda. The moment you start talking about the way your wife went out and fucked 10 guys while you were overseas, they’ll shout you down as a brute babykiller faster than you can say Uncle. What is it that you’re really allowed to cry about, Eagle? How was your experience on The Good Men Project? Were you allowed to cry?

  • dungone

    @Eagle34, I had a little trouble writing this, but when my friend committed suicide after he lost his job as a prison guard, none of the Marines he had served with in Iraq had to ask anyone for permission to cry. We all weeped. Yes I know that artists and clerks have problems, but what the fuck do people really think happens in the military? That we get strapped like Rambo and tear through Afghan villages only to weep to our commander in some cave somewhere about how society doesn’t need real men like us anymore? That’s not what happens. It’s more like this:

    HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan – The young Marine had just gotten a Dear John letter from a woman he had described as “my everything.” Days later, he killed himself while on guard duty in Helmand province.

    None of his buddies, even those who had known him since boot camp, had seen the signs of the man’s downward emotional spiral.

    The pain of his death was visible on their faces as Sgt. Maj. Carlton W. Kent, the senior enlisted man in the Marine Corps, delivered a message he has repeated at a dozen bases and outposts throughout this dangerous Afghan desert region: Marines are committing suicide in record numbers, and something has to be done.

    http://www.militarytimes.com/forum/showthread.php?1587719-Marine-suicide-rate-highest-in-the-military-what-have-you-done-to-curb-it

  • dungone

    So yeah, I get it. Dozens and dozens of articles by feminists telling men that it’s okay to cry are fucking unhelpful. They really think that’s what most men need to hear over and over again, to the point where it drowns out nearly every other issue that is of concern to men? They’re fucking stupid. The more men you actually meet and talk to, the more ways you’ll hear about actual men actually crying in actual ways that feminists had never even thought of in their wildest imaginations. You can’t fucking go around telling men that it’s okay to cry if you don’t even have the first clue about the many different issues that actually make them cry, feminist permission or not. Hell, that’s really all it is – feminists giving their permission for men to cry in a feminist-specified manner for approved feminist reasons. When they actually see real men’s tears, they are often unprepared and find those tears to be very threatening and unnerving.

  • Thomas

    @dungone 

    Which are the sane voices within it?

    Good question, indeed. The usual suspect would be Clarisse. Her article on creeps, for example, was great and she took a lot flak from other feminists for it. I believe MRAs later adopted her idea, something she wasn’t really comfortable with.

    Ozy certainly has her heart in the right place and I agree on a lot of things with her. Sadly NSWATM lost a bit of momentum. In the beginning they had more authors with a wider variety of views. There was one guy, Dr. … I don’t remember the name, with a more MRA-ish leaning. I also remember several interesting posts from female bloggers who don’t participate anymore. NSWATM has become more clearly feminist over time. The reason, IMO, is the camp mentality I mentioned earlier. The so called fence-sitters are either choosing sides or give up out of frustration. The former bloggers all had interesting, important things to say but they are not around anymore.

    Say what you want about Futrelle, but the guy has an incredible easy time finding MRAs with extremist, crazy opinions. He’s not always fair, but generally his assessment of the comments he mocks is correct and I say this as someone who really dislikes manboobz. So yes, I believe, there are more sane voices in the feminist movement than in the MRM.

    @Ginkgo

    Oh she can be physically female I agree, but she should be willing to step outside that the way GWW says she does. After gender is a construct, and any good fiath discutant is going to have to set aside every trace of toxic femininity eventually if she is to fully participate, and the same goes for toxic masculinity.

    GWW strikes me as the equivalent of a male feminists. She doesn’t want to be one of those gals. I think, she has an interesting perspective but her willingness to throw fellow women under the bus bothers me. I’m sorry, but in this regard she’s not unlike Schwyzer who happily points out how bad men are with the exception of him.

    As for a “No Girls” sign, that is completely reasonable. We need women in this conversation, not girls, and one of the issues is the culture’s refusal to distinguish between the two. it’s both misogyniist and misandrist as hell.

    Agreed. We should expect a minimum of accountability and agency from women.

  • Eagle34

    I understand Ginko and see where you’re coming from as a war veteran. Hope I didn’t come off as disparaging because I do care about those in the military who also struggle with issues that aren’t heard whatsoever.

    Now that you mention the angle Donovan was going for when criticizing feminists, yeah he does mean that men see public dishonor when certain feminists apply the “It’s okay for men to cry”.

  • http://dannyscorneroftheuniverse.blogspot.com/ Danny

    dungone:
    They have a blanket solution to all men’s issues: be more like women. Listen to women. Do what women tell you to do. That’s about the only thing they understand about men.
    I don’t think they believe that being more like women is the solution to men’s problems. I think they think they believe being more like feminists (because women does not equal feminist) where one starts off as the presumption the feminism has it all figured or at least it can’t all be figured out without feminism. In fact I recall Marcotte doing an article a while back actually called, “The Solution to Men’s Issues? More Feminism”.

    There are a lot of feminists out there that are still not ready to admit that when it comes to men that movement dropped the ball and it’s going to take more than telling men that feminism is some crucial necessity to gender equality to get the ball rolling. The wounds run deep and it’s going to be a hard long time healing them.

    In those links at Donovan’s post to that series of GMP articles there was no shortage of the thought that without feminism men would just be doomed to failure and destruction.

    But that being said I give the feminists at GMP a lot of cred because they are at least further ahead of the game than most feminists when it come to actually to men rather than talking at men (unfortunately I think that comes at the price of not gaining much traction with larger feminist spaces). Also they do take a lot of crap for their efforts (but I do think that while a lot of crap is uncalled for some it seems to be self inflicted due to a seeming insistence that feminism MUST be a part of the conversation on men).

    I’ve had my differences with Noah (even a few off the record email exchanges with him) but I think GMP would have been hard pressed to find a more fair minded editor in chief who just happen to be a feminist (because I hope to all that is holy that being feminist wasn’t a part of the criteria for that job).

    Thomas:
    Say what you want about Futrelle, but the guy has an incredible easy time finding MRAs with extremist, crazy opinions. He’s not always fair, but generally his assessment of the comments he mocks is correct and I say this as someone who really dislikes manboobz. So yes, I believe, there are more sane voices in the feminist movement than in the MRM.
    My problem with the manboobz crowd is that it seems that it’s gotten to the point that Futrelle is allowed to characterize (if not straight lie) in his assessments and Toy Soldier has a bit of a past with the way that crowd treated him over telling his stories of abuse. In short if it’s so easy to find MRAs with extreme ideas then why characterize?

  • http://stonerwithaboner.wordpress.com Stoner With a Boner

    “My problem with the manboobz crowd is that it seems that it’s gotten to the point that Futrelle is allowed to characterize (if not straight lie) in his assessments and Toy Soldier has a bit of a past with the way that crowd treated him over telling his stories of abuse. In short if it’s so easy to find MRAs with extreme ideas then why characterize?”

    He will straight up take a part of what someone said, then putt his own words behind it (changing what they may have actually been saying) then putt a flashing sarcasm button for plausible denability….

    Also his crew will label anyone that disagree’s with them as “MRA.” I’ve straight out said where I disagree with Paul Elam et all, yet his crew would still paint me with the same broad brush as Mr. Elam, Ferdinand Bardimu, Jack Donovan, etc. etc when I’ve had disagreements and differing ideologies with them all. Of course they’ll say feminism isn’t a monolith should you bring up some vile thing a rad fem like Vliet Tiptree has said…

  • Copyleft

    Ozy has good intentions marred by a huge blind spot when it comes to the MRM: reflexive, hostile dismissal and typical female-privilege sneering at how “pathetic” those woman-hating MRAs are.

    It’s a shame, because otherwise Ozy’s blog has some good comments and reflects a willingness to consider the male point of view… in certain carefully marked-off areas.