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30 Bad Ideas Men Should Embrace if They Want to Destroy Themselves, Part I

How today's single women should apply David P. Goldman's It's Not the End of the World, It's Just the End of You to their dating lives. Finding Mr. Righteous is possible when you know what to look for to weed out the man-boy barbarians who haven't figured out that when you worship yourself, ultimately "you become the god that failed."

Dave Swindle


August 4, 2014 - 2:00 pm
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Two of my favorite recent books - I recommend reading these together in tandem for added insight... #culture #religion #relationships #marriage #god

See the previous parts of this ongoing series exploring culture, relationships, and religion through books:

April 11: Men Should Read Lisa De Pasquale’s Sexy Memoir

Lisa’s book provokes many questions and this post is the beginning of a series to host and encourage a discussion about them. Lisa organizes her book around 7 different men — Chris the Atheist, Joe the Catholic, John the Evangelical, Preston the Quaker, Ryan the Preacher, Adam the Jew, and Brandon the Nondenominational Believer — and how her pursuit of them shaped her own religious journey. I’m going to give each one at least one blog post excerpting from her book and raising a question for debate…. Lisa’s memoir is an inspiring journey through her own struggles with the idols she’s worshiped. In future posts I’ll consider an idol-based reading of her book in juxtaposition with other texts and the stories of the day. Recognizing the idol we’re worshiping that’s keeping us enslaved is the first step to picking it up, smashing it, and finding the free life God wants us to have. Lisa’s book collects the fragments of seven of her smashed idols and there’s much we can learn from her. Stay tuned, in future posts I’ll also consider Lisa’s insights alongside two related books I’ve read recently, Kathy Shaidle’s Confessions of a Failed Slut (which Ed Driscoll interviewed her about here today) and Dr. Helen Smith’s Men On Strike

April 17: The Normal Way Godless Men Treat Women (A discussion of Chris the Atheist’s sexual violence against Lisa and its ancient cultural roots.)

June 26 at the PJ Tatler: 30 Books For Defeating Valerie Jarrett’s Cult of Political Criminals.

That Sunday, June 29, excerpting a section of it at PJ Lifestyle: 5 Deep Books For Overcoming Our Addiction to Idol Worship

Here are links to round 1 of a debate at PJ inspired by the “spreadsheet husband” that ran July 20-24:

This extended list article today, tomorrow, and Wednesday Friday draws from the debate’s comments and juxtaposes them with excerpts from Finding Mr. Righteous, 3 of the 5 books on idolatry, and a few more related titles.

This can be understood as opening up Round 2 and and inviting others to participate. Send submissions in response to these subjects to DaveSwindlePJM {@} or please leave comments below or feel free to get in touch on Twitter: @DaveSwindle (We should start featuring more Twitter discussions at PJ Lifestyle…)


Dear Lisa,

I hope your last few months have been less tumultuous than mine. After almost a month in our new apartment in South L.A., April and I are starting to get comfortable and settled — we finally tested out the pool yesterday. (Siberian Husky Maura remained skeptical and chose not to go in even though our landlord said she could. Someday we hope to get her swimming. She does enjoy going to the beach.) Here’s a picture of her exploring the new town, I’m going to try to collect more sunrise pictures of her:

A great #sunrise in #socal this morning as the #siberianhusky and I try and wake up today...

After the first two posts in the series on your book I ran into a writer’s block, a challenge that I’ve now at last overcome: how best to explain the difference between Judeo-Christians and pagan Christians, one of the phenomena your book illustrates so vividly. This is my way of trying to contribute to understanding the wide range of religious relationship experiences you had over the years and why they varied so much amongst men who were supposedly committed to the same holy book, worshipping the same God. Illustrating the paganism of your first failed Mr. Righteous, Chris the Atheist, was easy enough. Camille Paglia is probably the most perceptive writer today analyzing the cultural blend of secularism and amoral neopagan values.

But in analyzing the varieties of Christianity in the context of their ratio of pagan to Jewish influences, there’s another writer — who’s exhibited an even stronger influence on my views the last three years — who I want to encourage you to consider both for future writings and for his insights on life in general.

David P. Goldman is a PJ columnist with a diverse background and a knowledge base ranging from economics and finance to history, philosophy, art, music and culture, to religion and theology. I read his book How Civilizations Die (And Why Islam is Dying Too) a few years ago and make it a point to try and edit as many of his pieces here at PJ as I can. I’ve just recently acquired and read his essay collection It’s Not the End of the World, It’s Just the End of You: The Great Extinction of the Nations.

Among Goldman’s unique insights is to apply the theological writings of Jewish philosopher Franz Rosenzweig and his magnum opus The Star of Redemption to understand demographic and cultural trends today, particularly why it is that so many nations and people around the world choose to destroy themselves. Goldman’s answer: secularism produces hopelessness and does not inspire people to marry and reproduce. There is a big link between religiosity, family size, and happiness. Goldman lays out the data to both show that it’s there and then, through explaining Rosenzweig’s analysis of pagan, Jewish, and Christian cultures, explain how to fix it.

And it starts with applying it to our own lives — his ideas are just as useful at the macro level as they are for understanding ourselves and interpersonal relationships. The same techniques the West needs to use for defeating the sex-and-murder worshipping barbarians on the global stage we can use for overcoming these challenges in their smaller manifestations in the people around us and in our own unruly, jealous hearts.

So here are some of the bad ideas that your book does a great job of exposing — warning signs for both men and women — and some related ideas too that will yield further insights into the challenge of overcoming the stumbling blocks preventing us from being the righteous people our friends and family need us to be.

What does it mean to be a righteous man in America today? Question of the day. #manhood #masculinity #God #men #women

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There is a wide gulf of middle ground between expecting a wife to be a "happy hooker" who spreads her legs on his command and , as Swindle seems to suggest, a man being required to seduce his wife in order to avail himself of , or make applicable, Paul's admonition to married couples.

"Due benevolence" was where Paul left the reader to decide.

I interpret that - and quite reasonably so - to mean that, as a man, I'm not empowered to be a jerk and then expect her to happily put out; far from it.
Kindness and concern for her as "the weaker vessel" is the point of Paul's instruction.
The problem here for Swindle is that "benevolence" (which is expected of her too) isn't often "seductive", but that's what is biblically required.

Frankly, Swindle's repeated emphasis on what comes across as a biblical command ( according to him) that married men learn seduction techniques in order that their wives receive due benevolence has a self serving tone.

Come clean Swindle. Admit that you assume yourself a better man than those jilted chaps you shame with your arrogant tone.
Admit you fantasize about servicing, with your self proclaimed superior level of customer satisfaction, these men's wives.
You aren't alone in your fantasy.
Guys like Marc Driscoll don't sound substantially different from you.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Admit you fantasize about servicing, with your self proclaimed superior level of customer satisfaction, these men's wives."
Ha! My wife is more than enough for me and the only woman I want. But I don't think that I have any inherent special technique or secret or a "self proclaimed superior level of customer satisfaction." What I know about my own wife won't necessarily apply to other women. Every woman's going to be different. The point is to know her on such a level that when she says she's "not in the mood" the husband should know what it takes to put her in the mood -- and recognize a challenge to do so. And that's going to be different for every woman. Moods and emotions are changeable -- both other people's and our own.

"Frankly, Swindle's repeated emphasis on what comes across as a biblical command ( according to him) that married men learn seduction techniques in order that their wives receive due benevolence has a self serving tone."

A Kosher approach to sex and marriage is about more than "seduction techniques." It's about changing attitude toward sex's role in marriage.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
What I've gathered about the Kosher attitude toward ANYTHING makes me wonder why you bother writing about it, unless your purpose is making the unreasonable more palatable.
No thanks.
If your concern centers around some male-centric view of marital sex and the home life of evangelical Christian couples, you needn't worry.
Evangelical men are among the most supplicant of their wives of all the guys I know.
There is little about their lives that isn't about the wife and meeting her demands - except football, possibly.
If they're enjoying frequent sex with their wives, their groveling must be quite seductive.
It's a quizzical thing indeed that these guys are called misogynists simply for warming a pew once a week, listening to the preacher scold them for the wrongs of men that aren't there.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
To the extent that you say "secular men shouldn't get married", I'd agree to the extent that the guy who thinks something supernatural will protect him from family court when his wife finds a bigger, better deal, really deserves what's coming to him.

Not that I don't hope he finds someone with the same values and perseverance, and succeed in their endeavor. However, in my 14 year experience with marriage and family court, having faith, including having faith in doing the right thing, even with a partner who professes a love of god initially, doesn't bear up to what's going to happen to him in family court.

Men have a right to be cynical about the women that feminism and our perverse government incentives have created. I've seen enough vicious shrews in church that I avoid that emasculating institution as much as possible.

I'm no scholar, but the Paul-fetishists are as much of a deterrent to people embracing faith as a freshly flattened skunk in the parking lot would be. Certainly the Paul-ites were the force behind the "moral majority", and the backlash response to that theocracy has made more of us silent about faith than we dare admit. Sadly, the left can't see the strident moralists in their own camp. Same twits, different dogma.

Raised a Presbyterian, I can't for the life of me understand where praying for "stuff" or good fortune came into being, but it's common for several denominations that I've encountered. Perhaps you know the root of this?
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Dear Lord, won't you buy me a Mercedes-Benz?" -- Janis Joplin
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Raised a Presbyterian, I can't for the life of me understand where praying for "stuff" or good fortune came into being, but it's common for several denominations that I've encountered. Perhaps you know the root of this?" I have my suspicious but I'd have to research a little deeper to find the specific roots. Thanks for the suggestion. I'll look into it.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
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