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Belmont Club

The Late Great Manly Man

February 8th, 2014 - 2:45 pm

Bethany Mandel of PJ Media cites a New York Times article to argue that “women prefer manly men” by inferring from the frequent use in the NYT of the word “submission” some sort of innate desire for a masterful quality. But as the Telegraph points out, submission is often directed towards incompetence. In an article titled “Why women can’t resist bad boys,” Caroline Kent writes:

like many women, I have an illogical soft-spot for massive jerks. There is something about bad boys that we find incredibly appealing, even though we often regret the experience afterwards.

I’m so drawn to their powerful/sensitive/artistic (delete as applicable) natures that it allows me to rationalise away their abusive, selfish, sarcastic or psychopathic side, until it’s too late. I don’t know whether it’s chemistry or foolishness on my part, but let me try to explain why we – or at least I – do it.

Many women are now attracted to men who can’t find their way out of the woods and not to the sort of men who own the woods.  The appeal of such lost men is considerable and they go out of their way to enhance it. Woody Allen consciously adopted the persona of a nebbish. “As a comic, he developed the persona of an insecure, intellectual, fretful nebbish, which he insists is quite different from his real-life personality.” Why? Because being the loser gets the gals.


By contrast, who likes the manly man today, really? For thousands of years — at least from Beowulf — it was customary for men to stand for the “ashes of their fathers and the temples of their gods.” Now these are the guys we send off to die. We don’t even want them to win. And in fact, the job of every modern enlightened president is to stop them before they do.

Do you think any of us are ever going to marry a movie star?

Do you think any of us are ever going to marry a movie star?


Somewhere along the line, things changed. It became cool to be the anti-traditional manly man.  As Roger L. Simon realized, there was no market among the best and the brightest for Lone Survivor. Roger writes, “I was thinking about that this morning while perusing the Oscar nominations for this year. As an Academy member, I had voted but did not see my number one selection for Best Picture — Lone Survivor — anywhere on the list of the nine nominees. I can’t say I was surprised. Lone Survivor is a patriotic film and patriotism isn’t high on the list of positive traits for Hollywood these days, except perhaps to that group of once-secret outliers known as the Friends of Abe.”


It is now unfashionable to be the old manly man. When the Obama administration launched a campaign to attract enrollees into Obamacare, did they they front up a two-fisted, hard-drinking, cigar-chomping he-man?  Hell no. They employed “Pajama Boy” to lure the mice into the trap. This is who they reckoned the rising generation would admire. The heck with aspiring to be a test pilot or an astronaut. What people want today is the “funemployment” guy; the thing who drinks hot chocolate in his parents’ basement preparatory to selling them on subsidized, crap insurance. Pajama Boy is the new beau ideal.  Why would the PR men have used his visage to grace their ads if women preferred “manly men”?

Fatal Attraction

Fatal Attraction

You can make the half-serious argument that in order to be a winner in today’s world it pays to be a loser.  After all, you get subsidies. You get sympathy. You can play the victim card. Above all, you get the girl.

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Top Rated Comments   
What Wretchard says here reminds me of a poem written by Ezra Pound in 1909 as a direct response to the wimpy (dare we say "Pajama Boy"?) Jesus of popular late Victorian piety. It is called the "Ballad of the Goodly Fere" ["fere" is an archaic word for "companion"] I think it is worth posting here in full:

Simon Zelotes speaketh it somewhile after the Crucifixion.

Ha’ we lost the goodliest fere o’ all
For the priests and the gallows tree?
Aye lover he was of brawny men,
O’ ships and the open sea.

When they came wi’ a host to take Our Man
His smile was good to see,
“First let these go!” quo’ our Goodly Fere,
“Or I’ll see ye damned,” says he.

Aye he sent us out through the crossed high spears
And the scorn of his laugh rang free,
“Why took ye not me when I walked about
Alone in the town?” says he.

Oh we drank his “Hale” in the good red wine
When we last made company.
No capon priest was the Goodly Fere,
But a man o’ men was he.

I ha’ seen him drive a hundred men
Wi’ a bundle o’ cords swung free,
That they took the high and holy house
For their pawn and treasury.

They’ll no’ get him a’ in a book, I think,
Though they write it cunningly;
No mouse of the scrolls was the Goodly Fere
But aye loved the open sea.

If they think they ha’ snared our Goodly Fere
They are fools to the last degree.
“I’ll go to the feast,” quo’ our Goodly Fere,
“Though I go to the gallows tree.”

“Ye ha’ seen me heal the lame and blind,
And wake the dead,” says he.
“Ye shall see one thing to master all:
’Tis how a brave man dies on the tree.”

A son of God was the Goodly Fere
That bade us his brothers be.
I ha’ seen him cow a thousand men.
I have seen him upon the tree.

He cried no cry when they drave the nails
And the blood gushed hot and free.
The hounds of the crimson sky gave tongue,
But never a cry cried he.

I ha’ seen him cow a thousand men
On the hills o’ Galilee.
They whined as he walked out calm between,
Wi’ his eyes like the gray o’ the sea.

Like the sea that brooks no voyaging,
With the winds unleashed and free,
Like the sea that he cowed at Genseret
Wi’ twey words spoke suddently.

A master of men was the Goodly Fere,
A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.

I ha’ seen him eat o’ the honey-comb
Sin’ they nailed him to the tree.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
You know, there still are lots of American women who actually like men. Again, as noted in my post above, the left has created an illusion that a lot on Americans don't ascribe to. Folks, practice a little "Irish democracy," and ignore the bastards.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Richard, I truly love your blog. The arguments you present and the intellect of many who respond here is superb. But, I have to think that being from down under, you are in some cases victim of the MSM, the sources who are relying on to present your argument.

On the ground here, even in blue states, daily life goes on. High school football games are still popular. Girls still like boys who are protective.

You are basing your points above on what you read and hear, but this is form the same source who is trying to control the narrative. I hate their lies, but thank God, many folks in this country still see them as lies.

Our problem is that the vast majority of Americans are too busy going on about life to realize we are under attack from within and ignore the voting booth.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (155)
All Comments   (155)
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I am 100% attracted to "manly men" it comes with having a female brain. The reason they are "out of style" has nothing to do with style but everything to do with xenoestrogens polluting the environment and making more men gay and more women (esp those educated by liberal women's studies profs) less feminine. A "real man" a courageous, kind, secure, champion is still the best kind of man there is and totally sexy.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
How about an end to these stories about what men need to do in order to be accepted by women? ("Cry! No, don't cry! Help out with the dishes! No, wait -- don't!") How about men, just like women, be themselves and demand to be accepted for who they are, not for who someone else wants them to be?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Loser women breeding with loser men makes them easier to conquer when the day comes. I support the left's narrative.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I read somewhere on the net that research has shown (at least once) that women on the pill prefer less dominant men. So if that's true, than manly men who want a woman who wants a manly man should become Catholic.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
What we fail to observe, typically, is that pop and political culture is very separate from real life. Find a man that has real technical skills, takes care of himself, and wants to be a good husband and father, and if he has any social skills at all, he'll not lack for attention from the opposite sex.

The real problem is the way modern feminism disincentivizes marriage for men. Now you have a generation of man-children who grew up without a full-time dad who would rather play video games than get married. That's a bigger threat to manhood than a lack of interest in manly men by women.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I didn't realize that PajamaBoy was a male.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I've always been convinced that one of the reasons Sarah Palin was so hated by left wing feminists was not only that she gave birth to five children and was very capable while so doing, but she also married a very manly outdoorsman.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Todd won the IronDog race four times. It's brutal, and it's done on dastardly, no-good, pollution-spouting, loud, snowmachines traveling through pristine mountain snow. If that isn't enough to get the NOW girls panties in a wad, I don't know what is.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Richard said, "For thousands of years — at least from Beowulf — it was customary for men to stand for the 'ashes of their fathers and the temples of their gods.' Now these are the guys we send off to die."

I don't disagree with his point, but that quotation undercuts it.

The rest of the line is, "But how can man die better / Than facing fearful odds / for the ashes of his fathers / And the temples of his gods" -- and Horatius, the speaker, *was* being sent off to die.
(He didn't, of course, but that was by the grace of God.)

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Many a woman out with a Pajama Boy-type is probably reassured by the fact that at a pinch she can thrash him within an inch of his life and therefore feel safe with him.

I don't think this is what was meant. I think "not getting hurt" here means less risk of him running off with someone else.

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I agree that Pajama Boy is the image of men the leftosphere has foisted upon us. I don't agree that he is what young women want. A significant percentage of young women, including those who consider themselves feminists, are not attracted to, are even repulsed by the neutered males in their peer groups. Many are attracted to "bad boys," merely because they exude the illusory image of a masculinity that has been bludgeoned out of many "educated" males. They yearn for a masculine male. Who is nowhere to be found.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I really have no basis for it, but I tend to think most women would like someone who it strong, decisive, honorable, yet considerate and chivalrous. Perhaps that's just because those are my own ideals (which I fall far short of).
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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