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Susan Walsh: Chartbreaker, Part 2

Happy day!  Susan Walsh has drawn another diagram! Loyal readers of Man Boobz will recall the last time that Walsh, a would-be relationship expert who blogs at Hooking Up Smart, tried her hand at diagram making. It wasn’t pretty. In an attempt to sketch out the economic costs of sluthood, Walsh cobbled together an extravagantly convoluted mess of a flow-chart based on little more than a few bad assumptions and what she insisted was common sense.

This time, Walsh attempts to chart how the sexual revolution has transformed dating, borrowing her argument largely from some dude called Frost who blogs about sex and relationships and PUA bullshit at  Freedom Twenty-Five.

Back in the old “leave it to Beaver” days, Frost argues, virtually all men and women paired off efficiently with partners who exactly matched their level of hotness, as charted on the infamous ten-point scale beloved of pickup artists and other such creatures. Fives married fives, nines married nines, and even lowly ones were able to find true love and hot ugly sex with others as unfortunate as they were. As Walsh puts it, attempting to make all this somehow sound vaguely scientific:

This system worked pretty well in achieving equilibrium with respect to SMV (sexual market value).

Naturally, neither Frost nor Walsh offer any evidence that any of this was true. Which only makes sense, since it, er, wasn’t.

Let’s set that aside for a moment and move on to our current fallen state, post-sexual revolution. Now, apparently, a small minority of hot dudes score all the chicks, from nines on down to threes. Everyone else spends their lonely nights alone with their hands and a choice of vibrator or fleshlight.

Here’s where the diagram comes in. It’s a doozy:

From "Hooking Up Smart."

Now, Walsh doesn’t actually explain how she knows this (or, rather believes it, since it clearly is not true), or why exactly she thinks the sexual revolution is to blame. But Frost does, sort of. With the sexual revolution, he argues,

the social convention of monogamy starts to break down. Women are free to do what they want, and they quickly realize that the men they can persuade to have short-term sexual relationships with are much, much more attractive than the men willing to marry them. Attractive men are free to eschew marriage, and instead maintain a harem of rotating friends-with-benefits and one-night stands. Super-attractive men (professional athletes, rock stars, bloggers) can spend every night with a different coterie of young, attractive women, railing lines off their ass cheeks and banging them senseless.

Sounds great for men. And not too bad for women either, who get to shag NHL players and bloggers instead of their ho-hum husbands.

Wait a minute. “… and bloggers?” Bloggers are now the alpha males? I wish I’d known this sooner!

But every woman who elects to join a harem, must necessarily leave a lonely man behind in the great mating scramble. … The men at the bottom are left to their RPGs and porn.

So there you have the effects of the sexual revolution on men: Great for the few, awful for the teeming masses.

Well, there’s a certain logic to that argument. It’s just not, you know, true.

Walsh and all the manosphere dudes who’ve convinced themselves that 80% of men have been left sexless have it backwards: as a handy FAQ at the Kinsey Institute points out, only about 10 percent of men don’t have sex during any given year. The average frequency of sex ranges from more than 100 times a year for those in their teens and twenties to about 70 times a year for those in their 40s.

But what about the ladies? Frost explains that they suffer too, especially those unfortunate enough to be mega-hotties. Frost seems to base this conclusion almost entirely on the sexual history of one Betty Draper. This seems a very small sample size to me. Also, she’is fictional. But that doesn’t stand in Frost’s way:

What about the top woman? The ultimate hottie? Previously, she had the top man all to herself. She literally could not have asked for anything more, assuming as I do that women naturally gravitate toward sleeping with the one man who is their best option at a given time, while men are only as faithful as their options. Suddenly, her man is beset by hussies, plying him with offers of cheap sex. How does Betty Draper feel about the breakdown of monogamy in her world? …

Now [the top women] must choose between sharing, or settling for a man far below her previous catch. Meanwhile, uglier women can choose between monogamy with a man far above her previous level, or a shared slice of one of the top men. She is unequivocally better off, as the hotter women are unequivocally worse off.

Frost concludes:

The Sexual Revolution harms attractive women, and unattractive men. It benefits unattractive women, and attractive men.

Betty Drapers of the world, unite!

Naturally, none of this is the fault of men. It is, Frost and Walsh apparently agree, the fault of all those mid-level bitches slutting it up with the top men. It’s all their fault that the ladies at the top and bottom are getting left high and dry.

Indeed, it’s high time that the hottest hotties stood up for their rights, Frost argues in a second blog post:

It never seems to occur to the hot girls of the world that the sexual revolution is the cause of their troubles. Without it, the best that a top man could do is find a top woman, and devote his life to her. In our present dystopia,  he can find that top woman, and rip her heart and soul to pieces by maintaining a harem of flings on the side.

If it wasn’t for the legions of female 7′s and 8′s throwing themselves at the male 9′s, the female 9′s could have their men all to themselves. But in the world as it is, they will always be competing with the omnipresent availability of cheap and easy sex.

Were the hot women to regain their hot pride, sluts and feminists alike would quake in their boots:

The greatest fear of the feminists is that desirable women like yourselves will wake up the lies they’ve been fed, embrace their feminine modesty, and cast the harsh light reality on of the fat, shrill, used-up slutwalkers and middle-aged divorcees.

What of the not-quite-hotties? Walsh has some harsher advice for all those “mediocre sluts” out there riding that alpha asshole cock carousel. She writes:

For less attractive women, an objective assessment of market value is essential. That can only be realized by evaluating which men are interested in dating you rather than banging you.

In other words: mid-level ladies, you’re still losers. Eventually, you asses will get fat, your skin will get wrinkly, and the alpha assholes will grow tired of banging you. So what are you poor gals to do? Walsh offers this grim assessment:

These are the hard truths of the Post Sexual Revolution era. There are a few winners, and many losers. It is difficult to see how equilibrium can ever be regained. For now at least, your only option is to think carefully and realistically about your personal life goals. Make sure the choices you’re making get you closer to them.

(Confidential to Susan Walsh: You do know that using terms like “equilibrium,” like you’re some sort of sexual economist, doesn’t actually make your bullshit true?)

Given that everything in Frost and Walsh’s posts here is such unmitigated bullshit, I think I have some better advice for women of all hotness levels (if they haven’t already figured this out for themselves): stop taking relationship advice from a woman who wants you to hate yourself.

And speaking of bad choices: those smileys? Oy. Strive for elegant simplicity, not tacky clutter.

NOTE: Chuck on Gucci Little Piggy has written a response of sorts to this post. I’ve replied on his blog here. But there is something distressing going on there: Someone has posted several rude comments there under the name “Man Boobz.” THAT PERSON IS NOT ME. If any of you are responsible, STOP IMMEDIATELY. I’ve asked Chuck to ban that person and delete the comments.

EDITED TO ADD: Chuck changed the name of the commenter to “not man boobz.” That makes sense to me.

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NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

@Rutee

Me too.

If a man talks while in the forest and no woman heard him, is he still wrong?

Pam
Pam
10 years ago

Very interesting, this is. What I think surprised me most was how perceptions of hotness varied by gender. The response rate based on hotness, not so surprising, but the perceptions legit surprised me.

Huh. So, according to those statistics, Susan oughta be revamping her chart to show all of the arrows going from each of the figures on the right-hand side to the uppermost figure on the left-hand side. That might be a bit more accurate.

NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

@MertvayaRuka

“Obviously NWO is speaking from experience as someone who is incapable of not continuing to dig once he find’s he’s stuck in a hole.”

Continuing to dig while in the hole, now you’re talking my language you little scamp.

Rutee
Rutee
10 years ago

WEll, it’s only one source. I don’t really care about dating politics, so I haven’t researched it. I can’t say whether it’s corroborated by others. But yes, if this is accurate, the directions are completely wrong.

Ami Angelwings
10 years ago

@NWO o_O So you’re saying the posited claim that it’s easier for women to get sexual partners, than men, is a physical/biological issue involving the physical aspects of sex? :3

katz
10 years ago

NWO seems to be on an eternal quest to say the most cringe-worthy thing possible. I think only “crotch fruit” could be less appealing than his metaphor.

NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

@David Futrelle

“So we know that the 80%-20% is literally untrue. But let’s assume that what Walsh means that some guys have sex almost never. Let’s say they have sex once a year. If men on average have sex between 70-110 times a year, and 80% of men have sex only once, those Alpha dudes must be fucking pretty much continually. Even the old dudes.”

Not really much of a stretch Dave. 80% of the women times 70 times a year equals 560/20% = 280. Alpha thug has his mainstay plus toss in a little afternoon delight while hubbys off at work not meeting wifeys needs and your down to 140 days a year per Alpha thug. Badda bing badda boom.

NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

@katz

“NWO seems to be on an eternal quest to say the most cringe-worthy thing possible. I think only “crotch fruit” could be less appealing than his metaphor.”

Yea but thats only if I say it, if it’s one of the gang like Ozzy than it’s okily dokily.

Pam
Pam
10 years ago

WEll, it’s only one source. I don’t really care about dating politics, so I haven’t researched it. I can’t say whether it’s corroborated by others.

It’s not something that I’ve researched, either, but OKCupid’s “research” results are probably just as valid as Susan’s “common-sense tells us” statistics.

G.L. Piggy
10 years ago

“Susan Walsh seems to bill herself as an economist of sex.”

Check your premise. And the word “seems”. She writes about sex and touches on the sexual marketplace. You’re trying to play some silly semantics game for some reason. Susan’s was a rudimentary model used to show what is going on in the SMP.

“That’s interesting, I implicitly gave you a chance to actually substantiate your fact claims with studies”

That’s the thing. There aren’t studies that have set to answer this particular question. Thus the at-home modeling and analysis. We have to analyze what little data we have – virginity rates, median sex partner statistics, etc. But to reverse the question, I don’t think you can provide evidence to back your claim either. So it serves to think about how the sexual marketplace works. Since it at least follows loose patterns displayed by other primates (the fact that fewer males have sex with more females), we have every reason to assume that the same applies to humans. So, I’d be curious to hear your idea of what the distribution of sex partners looks like today.

“Incidentally, if you want to play the anecdata game, my girlfriend’s chances are much lower than mine, what with being a kinsey 6 nerd. As it happens, not all women and men are straight.”

Nor did I say they are all straight. But we’re obviously talking about heterosexual relations here, right? I think it’s worth appealing to credential here. Being a gay man you’d have very little insight into what is going on in the straight SMP.

G.L. Piggy
10 years ago

David,

“Anyway, I gave 2 stats in my piece, the one you mentioned, plus the % of males who have sex at some point in a year, which was 90%.

So we know that the 80%-20% is literally untrue.”

Sorry man, you’re misreading the stats. Susan’s contention (though I don’t think she mentioned it in her piece) is that 20% of men have 80% of the sex. I’ll admit that that argument is a little fuzzy. Does that mean “have sex at least once in a given year” or “total number of sex acts” or “total number of sex partners”. I think to be in the spirit of the argument it is best to think of the total number of sex acts.

So maybe 90% of men have sex once in a year. Maybe 10% of men are having sex 300 times per year. This is obviously not the case, but if it were then it would be true that 10% of men were engaging in roughly 97% of the sex (300 x .10 + .9 x 1 = 30.9 —-> 30/30.9 = 97%).

The number aren’t that skewed, but the point is that there is a mismatch somewhere and your 90% having sex statistic doesn’t disprove Susan’s 80-20 argument.

And when you think about it – and I don’t know where the 80-20 thing came from – but the numbers could be thought of a little differently. What would you guess would be the top half’s “sex share”? It’s the same question just shifted around a little. I’ll speculate here and guess that the top 50% of men have 90% of the sex.

Ami Angelwings
10 years ago

Can’t wait until NWO reads the new NSWATM post and starts railing about… something xD

G.L. Piggy
10 years ago

David,

That’s part of the issue here, I guess. Susan writes for a certain regular audience. Most of them understood her point. As soon as I saw it I knew that she wasn’t trying to say that only 20% of men get all of the sex. You even asked me to address her 80-20 assertion which is a statement that at least 80% of the “bottom” men still get 20% of the sex.

And I was addressing that about a gay man not understanding the hetero SMP (at least as well as someone who has been in it) to Rutee. Although earlier today I was under the assumption that you were gay. I stand corrected there.

Ami Angelwings
10 years ago

So you’re saying Rutee is a gay man? o_O

Pam
Pam
10 years ago

Walsh’s chart suggested that 80% of the men were having NO sex.

And if she drew up a chart based on OKCupid’s data, she might then see an alternative reason for this other than the conclusion that she’s drawing from her 2011 chart.

zhai2nan2
10 years ago

‘as a handy FAQ at the Kinsey Institute points out, only about 10 percent of men don’t have sex during any given year. The average frequency of sex ranges from more than 100 times a year for those in their teens and twenties to about 70 times a year for those in their 40s.’

I’m looking at the chart you linked. At least one of us is reading that chart incorrectly.

It has three categories: single, partnered, married.

Looking just at the “single” category, I see that at least 39.6 % of single men have reported no sex in the last year. In most categories, it’s more than 39.6%

Percentage of Men Reporting Frequency of Vaginal Sex, N=2396

Age Group 18-24 25-29 30-39 40-49 50-59 60-69 70+
Single
Not in past year 56.9 46.6 39.6 48.9 67.7 86.4 81.6

Are you doing some kind of adjustment for age brackets? Because I’m looking at that chart, and nowhere do I see a line that says “only about 10 percent of men don’t have sex during any given year.”

katz
10 years ago

She writes about sex and touches on the sexual marketplace.

“Show me on the stock chart where she touched you.”

katz
10 years ago

Susan writes for a certain regular audience. Most of them understood her point.

Susan writes for a regular audience of people who already agree with her, so they assume that what she’s saying is true and self-evident. That doesn’t make it either clear or logical and, indeed, doesn’t at all guarantee that what she’s trying to say is what she’s actually saying.

Rutee
Rutee
10 years ago

“It’s not something that I’ve researched, either, but OKCupid’s “research” results are probably just as valid as Susan’s “common-sense tells us” statistics.”
Well, no, actually, that’s not true. It’s only one source, and it’s not a representative sample of the entire population, but they’re actual statistics, and their methodology is actually pretty good. It wouldn’t pass peer review, I suspect, but it’s actually not horrible at all. It is, again, limited in scope, but it is a wide margin better than Walsh’s made up BS pulled out of her ass.

“Check your premise. And the word “seems”. She writes about sex and touches on the sexual marketplace. You’re trying to play some silly semantics game for some reason. Susan’s was a rudimentary model used to show what is going on in the SMP. ”
Excuse me? You’re talking about a sexual marketplace, and sexual market value, and when I point out that this sounds like trying to pretend you and Walsh are sexual economists, you feel that this is somehow a mischaracterization? Maybe you should learn to communicate more clearly. Personally, if I use market metaphors for everything, I expect people to actually read in economics and market-based commentary, but I’m not a terrible writer, so that’s to be expected.

“That’s the thing. There aren’t studies that have set to answer this particular question.”
There’s at least a bare minimum of a few on OK-Cupid, although as stated above there’s the fact that this is limited in depth and not representative of the populace as a whole. I don’t actually care about this shit, but I strongly suspect that not only has this been studied, but the results are out there if you care to look. Of course, you probably suck at research, and really, why bother when you have a captive audience that will accept your claims at face value?

Nonetheless, if you don’t actually have good data to back up your claims, then there’s no reason for me to take those claims seriously.

“We have to analyze what little data we have – virginity rates, median sex partner statistics”
None of which you produced or sourced, and yet you insist I should take you as though you were more than a clown.

“But to reverse the question, I don’t think you can provide evidence to back your claim either”
Do MRAs and PUAs have someone who will execute them if they do not make at least one false equivalence regarding feminism or feminists a day? I said that one single source indicated a weak trend towards unattractive men having a better chance than unattractive women. I also said that this source indicated that it is in fact highly attractive women who receive the bulk of the attention while the less attractive women are left to languor; further, this source also indicates that women send at least a plurality of their messages to the bottom 50% of men, with very few of their attentions given to the most attractive men.

I sourced this claim, which is tentative and based on a single study on a single site; that source is here || http://blog.okcupid.com/index.php/your-looks-and-online-dating/comment-page-12/#comment-35194

This is not amazingly strong evidence, and following suit, my claims aren’t very strong, and are very tentative; I specifically stated more data is needed if one truly wants to get a better look at these things. Our positions are not equally well supported; I made weak claims, following from weak evidence. You made very strong, definite claims, and have 0 evidence that you have sourced. Your claims are much less substantiated than mine are.

In short, as one can expect from one of you idiots, your opinion is unfounded, and therefore stupid; yet it is more strongly held than my own. Truly, a spectacle of the Dunning-Kruger.

“Nor did I say they are all straight.”
You made claims about all women, based on your perceptions of the availability of men for straight women. You did not indicate that perhaps this is not relevant for gay women.

“But we’re obviously talking about heterosexual relations here, right?”
And yet, you make claims about all women and all men.

“Being a gay man”
Are you illiterate, stupid, or just massively sexist? I specified my girlfriend was a kinsey 6 and you still somehow think I am a gay man? Is it the fact that I am better at science than you, or just the fact that I’m not politely humoring your bullshit?

Rutee
Rutee
10 years ago

Incidental note to David: Please do not take this ‘sexual marketplace’ metaphor seriously. It’s stupid, and mockworthy, because it equates things to supply and demand, which is a terribly reductive way to look at even quick one nighters.

no more mr nice guy
10 years ago

Susan Walsh is basically saying to her audience what they want to read : that most guys live a miserable sexless life because of feminism and that Alpha male are treating women like shit. These guys need to believe that most men are like them and that the women that reject them are abused.

One of the guru of the manosphere is F. Roger Devlin, a nutcase that wrote “Sexual Utopia in Power” : an ebook that say that feminists and alpha men are plotting against beta male to deprive them of sex and that one solution is to force women that have been date raped to marry their rapist :

http://dontmarry.files.wordpress.com/2009/03/sexualutopia.pdf
=============================================================
The date rape issue can be solved overnight by restoring shotgun
marriage—but with the shotgun at the woman’s back. The “victim” should
be told to get into the kitchen and fi x supper for her new lord and master. Not
exactly a match made in heaven, but at least the baby will have both a father
and a mother. Furthermore, after the birth of her child, the woman will have
more important things to worry about than whether the act by which she
conceived it accorded with some women’s studies professor’s newfangled
notion of “true consent.” Motherhood has always been the best remedy for
female narcissism.
==============================================================

The ideas of F Roger Devlin are widespread in the manosphere including on Hookingupsmart.

NWOslave
NWOslave
10 years ago

@Katz
“Susan writes for a regular audience of people who already agree with her, so they assume that what she’s saying is true and self-evident. That doesn’t make it either clear or logical and, indeed, doesn’t at all guarantee that what she’s trying to say is what she’s actually saying.”

Thats all groups like that ever do, preaching to the choir. Dontcha hate groups like that? One big echo chamber that can do no wrong.
————————————————
@Rutee
“In short, as one can expect from one of you idiots, your opinion is unfounded, and therefore stupid; yet it is more strongly held than my own.”

Dontcha just hate when supposedly reliable studies are based on nothing but feelings and opinion?
————————————————-
@no more mr nice guy
“The date rape issue can be solved overnight by restoring shotgun
marriage—but with the shotgun at the woman’s back. The “victim” should
be told to get into the kitchen and fi x supper for her new lord and master.”

As if this statement isn’t already an accurate representation of how men have treated women throughout history. Men act as if the earth will stop turning without a sufficient amount of misogyny.

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