the rationality community needs more feminism.
Brent seeded the rat community with the idea that he was an oppressed victim as a low status man while torturing women.
He didn’t spend a lot of time talking about the way women suffer. Not women who don’t match Hollywood standards, not those who aged out of them, not those who never wanted to.
Not even those who match all the norms, check check check – only to find themselves the victim of horrifying targeted abuse.
He talked about the way that power matters in the world. That if you have enough power and status and confidence women want you regardless of what you do to them. That because of some ethereal, soul-like factor you can be destined to be despised regardless of what you do.
That doing good by others you will see only bad in return unless you are one of the socially lucky. That your feelings of worthlessness and inferiority stem from a lack of generic willing hot sexy women half your age prostrating themselves before your sadist instincts for you to display your social mastery for all to see – that you aren’t getting what you deserve from the world. (Toxic masculinity, objectification.)
Never that the first step is to heal and love yourself in the here and now and stop violently grasping at other humans like they owe you.
These ideas aren’t just toxic, they’re also bullshit. Many people tried to help him be successful – with his own damn personal issues, at great cost to themselves. To cover for his sins, in the hope they could help him, in the spirit of care and slow to anger and trying to help everyone and looking for any possibility other than the one in front of them.
Meanwhile, Brent was hurting women. Badly.
“feminism” is a word always changing. Its most successful tenets are integrated into people’s models of How Things Are and become invisible. You go from the concept of wives having the right to say no is repugnant to well who doesn’t accept that it’s boring and there’s never a time in between where anyone acknowledges that this Feminism concept has some value.
But it has ideas: That women are often seen in terms of their body, as an instantiation of the class hot woman or ugly woman, rather that as a person. That men suffer because of the need to present themselves by an inhuman standard enforced not only by other men but women, including their mothers. That women who are being hurt – physically abused – are not heard.
None of these ideas are in conflict with the pain low status men, or high status men for that matter, feel! The fact that a lot of women just straight up leave and others are Skeeved Out might have something to do with the fact that bad actors hurt women in horrible ways and nothing was done about it and they did not feel safe.
A lot of the biggest, most famous writers in ratland do not seem to understand feminism at all. They pull out the most extreme content they can find, or Slate-style dreck, but they don’t do a real open-minded read through of bell hooks like socialist Steven Brust did of Wealth of Nations. And this is terrible! Because getting past awful, horrible attitudes isn’t about political correctness, it’s about cleaning the diseases out of your own damn mind which prevent you from becoming the amazing person you can be and getting what you want out of life. There is no body in this world gorgeous enough to make you satisfied with this existence and your place in it.
the rationality community needs more feminism.
No. This problem persisted because victims chose not to come forward. Brent obviously was unwilling to behave better (as evidenced by all the people who offered him advice or tried to help him only for him to continue with his actions), and I don’t see how more feminism in the community would change that. And ostracizing people based on mere rumour is highly prone to abuse, and not a net improvement over current norms.
Frankly, anyone taking this as an example of the rationalist community being particular prone to abuse has failed statistics, hard. Abusers abound in every community. If you don’t see a community publically dealing with theirs, they’re either doing so secretly (which is often less effective, because it makes it harder for community members to know who to avoid), or not doing so at all.
Everything about this guy sounds like he was at most two flipped bits away from being a Predatory Male Feminist. He’d have done the same fucking things, but he’d couch it in different language. He’d be about sex-positivity instead of degradation while doing the same thing. He’d be playing up how nonthreatening and unmasculine he was instead of playing up how hopeless and low-status he was, while doing the same thing. His sex slave contracts would be proof he was respecting women’s consent and boundaries like a good feminist because they negotiated and agreed on everything beforehand. He’d be trumpeting his feminist credentials as proof he couldn’t be an abuser, while being an abuser, like every male feminist abuser we’ve seen. More feminism would not solve this problem, it would put this problem inside a much larger reference class.
But somehow argumate won’t notice that, because the only relevant quality of feminism seems to be Feminism Good, Give More Power To Feminists. So I guess more feminism would have given him more leeway to abuse, because he would have been able to exploit every mechanism to enable his abuse that he already did, and also draw on the strength of Feminism Good, Give More Power To Feminists, like every other male feminist abuser how the fuck do you not notice this pattern feminism is absolutely irredeemable malice.
Or this, I could have said this.