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Elliot Rodger–Would-be Modern Eugenicist

The dude who killed 6 before killing himself managed to get his manifesto posted to the web before offing himself.  Clearly, Elliot Rodger was not a well person.  Perhaps sometime I will have something more to say about him, having scanned his book.  I do not find his screed particularly surprising;  it seems exactly what we should expect in a hyper-sexualized society that emphasizes ‘fairness’ and elevates the alleviation or lack of suffering as the highest moral good.  What follows below is an excerpt where his viewpoint is summarized, and it dovetailed so well with some of my researches in eugenics, I wanted a record of my own for future discussion.

Probably the worst news to come out of the whole affair is that Rodger was not a Christian or a ‘member’ of the Tea Party and did not commit his acts in a place where gun control laws are very loose.

bringonbravenewworldHorvath-thumbAs it seems to me, Rodger definitely has caught the spirit of the eugenic mindset, minus the power he would need to practically implement any of his improvements of the race, and endued with a hatred of women stemming from his own hyper-sexualized outlook on the purpose of existence.  Besides the Darwinian/eugenic elements, there is the Nietzsche-Superman element that is often present in our mass murders, past and present.  I’d really like to see the books he was reading.

If you swap out ‘women’ for ‘Jews,’ ‘Negros’, or ‘feeble-minded,’ you will have pretty nearly the same flavor of things pre-1945, in Germany, yes, but also in America.  Three generations of imbeciles is quite enough, don’t you agree?

Anyway, reading this I was also reminded of my short story, “Bring on the Brave New World” where there are some uncanny similarities between my main character and the ideological components that fester in his mind and whatever was festering in Elliot Rodger.  The difference seems to be that in my story, my main character sees the same problem that Rodger does–what can practically accomplished “in his lifetime”–and sees that as the first thing to address before moving on to bigger and better things.  Apart from that, the similarities are striking;  methinks there is a universal acid at work, here.  Without further ado, from Mr. Rodger:

——————-

When I think about the amazing and blissful life I could have lived if only females were sexually attracted to me, my entire being burns with hatred.  They denied me a happy life, and in return I will take away all of their lives.  It is only fair.

I am not part of the human race.  Humanity as rejected me.  The females of the human species have never wanted to mate with me, so how could I possibly consider myself part of humanity?  Humanity has never accepted me among them, and now I know why.  I am more than human.  I am superior to them all.  I am Elliot Rodger… Magnificent, glorious, supreme, eminent… Divine!  I am the closest thing there is to a living god.  Humanity is a disgusting, depraved, and evil species.  It is my purpose to punish them all.  I will purify the world of everything that is wrong with it.  On the Day of Retribution, I will truly be a powerful god, punishing everyone I deem to be impure and depraved.

Epilogue

And that is how my tragic life ends.  Who would have thought my life will turn out this way?  I didn’t.  There was a time when I thought this world was a good and happy place.  As a child, my whole world was innocent.  It wasn’t until I went through puberty and started desiring girls that my whole life turned into a living hell.  I desired girls, but girls never desired me back. There is something very wrong with that.  It is an injustice that cannot go unpunished.  There is no way I could live a  happy life with such a scenario.

Not only did I have to waste my entire youth suffering in loneliness and unfulfilled desire, but I had to live with the knowledge that other boys my age were able to have all of the experiences I craved for.  It is absolutely unfair and unjust.  In addition, I had to suffer the shame of other boys respecting me less because I didn’t get any girls.  Everyone knew I was a virgin.  Everyone knew how undesirable I was to girls, and I hated everyone just for knowing it.  I want people to think that girls adore me.  I want to feel worthy.  There is no pride in living as a lonely, unwanted outcast.  I wouldn’t even call it living.

I am not meant to live such a pathetic, miserable life.  That is not my place in this world  I will not bow down and accept such a horrific fate.  If humanity will not give me a place among them, then I will destroy them all.  I am better than all of them. I am a god.  Exacting my Retribution is my way of proving my true worth to the world.

 

In the midst of my suffering, I have been able to see the world much clearer than others.  I have vision that other people lack.  Through my suffering, I have been able to see just how twisted and wrong this world really is.  The current state of humanity is what makes it wrong.  I look at the human race and I see only vileness and depravity, all because of an act known as … sexuality…

Sex is by far the most evil concept in existence.  The fact that life itself exists through sex just proves that life is flawed.  The act of sex gives human beings a tremendous amount of pleasure.  Pleasure they don’t deserve.  No one deserves to experience so much pleasure, especially since some  humans get to experience it while some are denied it.  When a man has sex with a beautiful woman, he probably feels like he is in heaven.  But the world is not supposed to be heaven.  For some humans to actually be able to feel such heights of heavenly pleasure is selfish and hedonistic.

The ultimate evil behind sexuality is the human female.  They are the main instigators of sex.  They control which men get it and which men don’t.  Women are flawed creatures, and my mistreatment at their hands has made me realize this sad truth.  There is something very twisted and wrong with the way their brains are wired.  They think like beasts, and in truth, they are beasts.  Women are incapable of having morals or thinking rationally.  They are completely controlled by their depraved emotions and vile sexual impulses.  Because of this, the men who do get to experience the pleasures of sex and the privilege of breeding are the men who women are sexually attracted to… the stupid, degenerate, obnoxious men.  I have observed this all my life.  The most beautiful of women choose to mate with the most brutal of men, instead of magnificent gentlemen like myself.

Women should not have the right to choose who to mate and breed with.  That decision should be made for them by rational men of intelligence.  If women continue to have rights, they will only hinder the advancement of the human race by breeding with degenerate men and creating stupid, degenerate offspring.    This will cause humanity to become even more depraved with each generation.  Women have more power in human society than they deserve, all because of sex.  There is no creature more evil and depraved than the human female.

Women are like the plague.  They don’t deserve any rights.  Their wickedness must be contained in order to prevent future generations from falling to degeneracy.  Women are vicious, evil, barbaric animals, and they need to be treated as such.

 

In fully realizing these truths about the world, I have created the ultimate and perfect ideology of how a fair and pure world would work.  In an ideal world, sexuality would not exist.  It must be outlawed.  In a world without sex, humanity will be pure and uncivilized.  Men will grow up healthily, without having to worry about such a barbaric act.  All men will grow up fair and equal, because no man will be able to experience the pleasures of sex while others are denied it.  The human race will evolve to an entirely new level of civilization, completely devoid of all the impurity and degeneracy that exists today.

In order to completely abolish sex, women themselves would have to be abolished.  All women must be quarantined like the plague they are, so that they can be used in a manner that actually benefits a civilized society.  In order to carry this out, there must exist a new and powerful type of government, under the control of one divine ruler, such as myself.  The ruler that establishes this new order would have complete control over every aspect of society, in order to direct it towards a good and pure place.  At the disposal of this government, there needs to be a highly trained army of fanatically loyal troops, in order to enforce such revolutionary laws.

The first strike against women will be to quarantine all of them in concentration camps.  At these camps, the vast majority of the female population will be deliberately starved to death.  That would be an efficient and fitting way to kill them all off.  I would take great pleasure and satisfaction in condemning every single woman on earth to starve to death.  I would have an enormous tower built just for myself, where I can oversee the entire concentration camp and gleefully watch them all die.  If I can’t have them, no one will, I’d imagine thinking to myself as I oversee this.  Women represent everything that is unfair with t his world, and in order to make the world a fair place, they must all be eradicated.

A few women would be spared, however, for the sake of reproduction.  These women would be kept and bred in secret labs.  There, they will be artificially inseminated with sperm samples in order to produce offspring.  Their depraved nature will slowly be bred out of them in time.

Future generations of men would be oblivious to these women’s existence, and that is for the best.  If a man grows up without knowing of the existence of women, there will be no desire for sex.  Sexuality will completely cease to exist.  Love will cease to exist.  There will no longer be any imprint of such concepts in the human psyche.  It is the only way to purify the world.

In such a pure world, the man’s mind can develop to greater heights than ever before.  Future generations will live t heir lives free of having to worry about the barbarity of sex and women, which will enable them to expand their intelligence and advance the human race to a state of perfect civilization.

It is such a shameful pity that my ideal world cannot be created.  I realized long ago that there is no way that I could possibly rise to such a level of power in my lifetime, with the way the world is now.  Such a thing will never become a reality for me, but it did give me something to fantasize about as I burned with hatred towards all women for rejecting me throughout the years.  This whole viewpoint and ideology of abolishing sex stems from being deprived of it all my life.  If I can’t have it, I will do everything I can to DESTROY IT.

My orchestration of the Day of Retribution is my attempt to do everything, in my power, to destroy everything that I cannot have.  All of those beautiful girls I’ve desired so much in my life, but can never have because they despise and loathe me, I will destroy.  All of those popular people who live hedonistic lives of pleasure, I will destroy, because they never accepted me as one of them.  I will kill them all and make them suffer, just as they have made me suffer.  It is only fair.

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14 Responses to Elliot Rodger–Would-be Modern Eugenicist

  1. Confirmation bias much?

    I guess we see what we want to see. This “manifesto” reads like a modern reworking of a lot of the early church fathers to me. The obsessive taboo of virginity, the guilty temptation of carnal activity metamorphosing into a vicious hatred of its desired object, the wish to completely eradicate the sexual act in order to achieve “purity”. None of these are very new ideas – the guy could be paraphrasing Tertulian. He was also, needless to say, not a great admirer of feminism.

    Narcissistic Personality Disorder with a side-helping of mysogyny and thwarted male-privilege entitlement would be my informal diagnosis.

  2. Can’t say I ever heard of early church fathers talking about quarantines for discriminated groups, breeding programs, or pure intellectual utopias being achieved by man’s own efforts.

    You do see those kinds of things in early eugenics and ethics works from the early 1900s though.

    Apparently some just see more clearly than others.

  3. *eyes rolling*

    Oh yea. There is quite the taboo on virginity, here. 😉

    That’s quite a stretch, there, partner, even for you.

    EB puts his finger on it… just what does the man have to say in order for it to sound more eugenic than Christian? Maybe he should have used the word ‘breeding.’ Oh wait, he did. But what would have really sealed it would have been if he had talked about degenerates. Doh! He did that too! Well, then, if only he had made comments about the advancement of the human race through better breeding… uh…. well, at least he didn’t talk about advancing human civilization by putting control of it in the hands of rational men… Drat. This confirmation bias thing is just so hard to shake. 😉

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/eugenics-the-early-days/

    Anyway, I think your comment suggests that I’m taking some kind of strong position on it. The guy was clearly a nutjob, but I at least am willing to consider that his ideology was a big contributor in making him into a nutjob. Surely you would agree–after all, it seems to be one of your core arguments over the last decade–that if a person sincerely accepts a dangerous ideology this could make them a danger to society. Interestingly, atheistic ideologies are never, on your view, of concern, but Christian ones always are.

    I have skimmed the manifesto with more care than most, and I have yet to see any hint in it that he was at all influenced by Tertullian. 😉

    I see distinct traces of high school biology married to a Nietzsche-style philosophy in it. The only hint of theism is in his definite view that there is a god, and his name is Elliot Rodger.

    You speak as though NPD just occurs as a random mutation of the mind, as though there cannot be any kind of ideological catalyst for it. I’ve been keeping tabs on the mass shooters for awhile now. Isn’t it disappointing how few of them are Tea Party patriots and how many tend to believe that they are more highly evolved than the rest of us? You may wave that away as of no consequence. I think it is in the best interest of society to call a spade a spade, lest we end up with NPD entrenched in the framework of society (a la, the Nazis) rather than isolate nutjobs doing their best simply to be ideologically consistent.

    One wonders what could possibly persuade you to recognize a spade if one every presented itself to you. 😉

  4. Having re-read my brief intro, I don’t understand at all how you can regard what I said as some kind of ‘confirmation bias.’ It is undeniable that he invoked breeding, degeneracy, elitism, fairness, and suffering. It is undeniable that our society has of late emphasized those last two elements. I didn’t make any editorial comments about that aside from saying that I think this kind of thing is to be expected from a society that emphasizes those two elements (and is hyper-sexualized).

    Clearly, the guy did not think sex was taboo. He desperately wanted it. That much also seems undeniable. Why was he so desperate? Because it was taboo? No, because he thought it was his right to participate in a sexually licentious society–and where would he have gotten that idea? Right. From the puritans.

    I watched his last video. It’s clear that he perceived this as a matter of fairness and justice–after all (says he), isn’t college all about experimenting with sex? Yea, he says that. How odd, given his ‘taboo on virginity.’

    Maybe if someone had told him that “Let’s do it like they do it on Discovery Channel” wasn’t the whole sum of human existence things could have ended differently.

    Anyway, I digress. My introductory commentary was 90% non-controversial. Methinks you just wanted to pick a fight. 🙂

  5. P.S. Does anyone else think that the phrase ‘taboo on virginity’ is incoherent when applied to Christianity? Shouldn’t it be, if anything, that Christianity had a taboo on sexual intercourse? Not that I agree with that, I’m just saying. Very confused about the use of this phrase.

  6. Sorry SJ, but the eugenics connection is an extreeeeeeeemely long bow to draw.

    Isn’t eugenics about increasing the (subjective) “quality” of the whole species through controlled / directed reproduction?

    This moron just wanted to kill almost every woman on the planet because he viewed them as “grudging dispensers of sex-candy” (to borrow PZ’s phrase) and didn’t know how to talk to them as people. He wasn’t sitting there thinking “Hmmm, how can I improve the species?”, he was thinking “FCK YOU FOR NOT LOVING ME DON’T YOU KNOW HOW AMAZING I AM WAAAAAAH”.

    Even if you manage to stretch the bow long enough to make the eugenics link (which you can’t), the whole thing goes away when you consider that he wouldn’t be thinking this way if he’d managed to pull his sense of vaginal entitlement out of his arse and actually get a girlfriend. That is, his “manifesto”, and the alleged link to eugenics which it contained, was contingent on the state of his love-life, not some grand philosophical / scientific position on the purity of the human race as a whole.

    Just another horny, idiotic, MRA fückwit who had easy access to guns and hated that vaginas happen to be attached to women.

    …it seems exactly what we should expect in a hyper-sexualized society that emphasizes ‘fairness’ and elevates the alleviation or lack of suffering as the highest moral good.

    Hyper-sexualised… maybe. But I can’t imagine any definition of “fairness” or “lack of suffering” that could apply to his stated aim of killing 3.5bn women.

    P.S. Does anyone else think that the phrase ‘taboo on virginity’ is incoherent when applied to Christianity?

    DB can correct me on this, but I don’t think he meant “taboo”. Wherever men have been in control, they have obsessed over and revered virgins, and given that was kind of DB’s point, I think he would agree that “taboo” perhaps wasn’t the best word to use. That’s what I gathered from his other points, and the general context. Then again, I may have misunderstood him. So maybe I’ll just shutup and let him explain.

  7. “Isn’t eugenics about increasing the (subjective) “quality” of the whole species through controlled / directed reproduction?”

    Eugenics involved a lot of different things, actually. In my recently approved dissertation 😉 I spent about 10 pages discussing it. Rather than quote my own research, which no one seems to give any weight to 🙂 let me quote Paul Lombardo, who offers a fair definition:

    Paul Lombardo, addressing the shifting definitions of ‘eugenics’ said:
    First, in practice—as it played out in law and social policy—the definition of eugenics was always changing. To some it meant cutting the tax burden generated by welfare dependent mothers by preventing the birth of more children of poverty. To others, it meant encouraging the most prosperous and successful to multiply, while impeding the replication of the deviant, the disabled, the diseased, or the criminal. Still others used eugenics as a touchstone for their fears that “inferior” racial groups were growing and must be interrupted lest they overrun a less fertile but “superior” race.

    Eugenics had both ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ components, both of which are reflected in this man’s excerpt above. I bolded a particularly apropos line, but Lombardo illustrates that the word had broad usage. Things that you may not realize were eugenics actually were eugenics. Eg, the minimum wage. Did you look at the Scientific American link? I thought it was quite similar, adjusting for the bitterness and immaturity of the person penning the manifesto.

    “the whole thing goes away when you consider that he wouldn’t be thinking this way if he’d managed to pull his sense of vaginal entitlement out of his arse and actually get a girlfriend.”

    I am willing to consider this is a strong possibility.

    “That is, his “manifesto”, and the alleged link to eugenics which it contained,”

    Perhaps a problem here is that you think of eugenics as if it were some kind of political party, like one might be ‘linked’ to the Nazis because we discover his Nazi membership card. Of course he’s not linked in that way. There were definitely lots of eugenics groups and ‘membership’ cards one could use to ‘link’ someone to eugenics, but eugenics was a mindset, mentality, an above all, an ideology. If someone says they want to improve the human race through better breeding (which is in both the manifesto and the Sci-Am editorial) they have just made a eugenic statement. That one is a no-brainer!

    “Hyper-sexualised… maybe. But I can’t imagine any definition of “fairness” or “lack of suffering” that could apply to his stated aim of killing 3.5bn women.”

    I’m going to keep mentioning Peter Singer’s editorial about wanting to sterilize the whole world in order to end suffering once and for all until it ‘takes.’ The only reason you personally can’t imagine it is because you are not approaching the question from a systems point of view (a common component in an eugenics ideology).

    Did you not recently ask me why I would be opposed to doing all reproduction through artificial insemination so that there could never be unwanted children (and thus, precious few abortions)? To make such a proposal is to step away from what we believe our own personal duty is to minimize suffering in the world practically within our reach and act as though we have a duty and moral obligation to enable ourselves to impose this duty on the rest of the world.

    But such proposals are usually only way stations on the way to the logical end, of which Rodger drew very close, and Singer closer still. Eugenicists were keenly interested in creating the largest possible systems in order to end ‘suffering’ for the most number of people. They derived this principle from utilitarian thinking–minimizing suffering becomes the only moral precept left when the foundations of morality have been swept aside.

    “I may have misunderstood him. So maybe I’ll just shutup and let him explain.”

    I will do the same.

  8. You’re both jolly good fellows, unfortunately this is just a drive-by response as I am really busy this week. I earnestly hope to be able to respond properly on Friday evening – try not to lose interest in the meantime. Very briefly, I would concede Tim’s suggestion about my choice of the word “taboo”, although I think there’s more to be said about it. Fingers crossed I’ll have time to say some of those things on Friday!

    Laters

  9. Perhaps a problem here is that you think of eugenics as if it were some kind of political party

    Not at all. I think of it as a philosophy, or ideology, or policy position. And any philosophy, ideology, or policy position that would be abandoned on second base isn’t worth the tube sock it was written on.

    That is… Rodgers was not a “eugenicist”. Not even close.

    I’m going to keep mentioning Peter Singer’s editorial about wanting to sterilize the whole world in order to end suffering

    If indeed Singer said that, then he has perhaps failed to recognise that he would end all happiness as well. In any case, his statement only makes sense if people, on average, suffer more than they happy (if you’ll allow me to briefly turn “happy” into a verb), and I don’t know that he can say that.

    To make such a proposal

    I didn’t make the proposal, remember? 🙂

  10. Also… I note that you posted three comments in a row.

    I assume EB will be along shortly to admonish you.

  11. Aaaaaaaaand I’m back.

    Re: the use of the word “taboo” relating to virginity.

    I’m not sure that there is a word for a concept that has had so much importance attached to it for centuries in our culture – importance that in itself it is quite unworthy of – so that some sections of society fetishise it while others stigmatise it. Taboo was the best one I could come up with on the fly.

    The religious obsession with virginity – of women – is one of the more pervasive and damaging ways that monotheism warps the human understanding of natural sexual desires and experiences. I suspect that one of the reasons that young men often feel that their virginity is shameful is that it’s cultural evolution has been so exclusively bound up with women that they may see it as being in some ways a feminine characteristic, undermining of the rugged (and often toxic) version of masculinity which they have been socialised to aspire to. Thus a construct that is prized under certain circumstances can become a shameful taboo in others. I actually don’t think I did too badly.

    I’m not going to disagree with you about the negative effects of hyper-sexualisation in Western culture, and no doubt that contributed to this young mans resentments and eventual actions. However, that hyper-sexualisation exists in a context of a lot of very widespread beliefs about men having the right to control women, and especially women’s bodies, which cannot really be understood without reference to our major religions.

    As Tim mentioned, it is known that this kid frequented Men’s Rights websites. Glenn Beck just recently stated that the feminist response on twitter to this event as well as many other instances of verbal and physical assaults on women (which you tell me that you know ALL about) was “just more man-bashing”. Again, those with privilege find it uncomfortable when that privilege, and their silent complicity in the various ways that their peers abuse it, is challenged or called out. That’s why there are Men’s Rights websites in the first place.

    Patriarchy, supported by most religions, demands male control over women. That’s why there is feminism.

    The principles, found in Christianity as well as in many other religions, that men are superior to women, that women should be “in submission” to them, that the sexuality of women is tainted with evil and that women are a snare, seducing helpless men from the path of righteousness – always with the mixing of desire and prohibition! – these seem far more salient to me in the frustrations of Elliot Rodger than the tenuous eugenical associations in his grandiose pie-in-the-sky fantasy of how he would set things right.

    Still, I understand that we will disagree on this point because, as I previously mentioned, confirmation bias. And not just yours.

  12. By ‘not just yours’ did you mean you included, or all of us suffering from ‘white privilege’?

    Anyway, if I understand this correctly, whether it is a ‘prize’ or a ‘shame’, any kind of attitude towards ‘virginity’ must be understood with “reference to our major religions.”

    Do I have that right?

    You seem to agree with me about the “negative effects of hyper-sexualization” which I think also implies that, like Tim, you allow that there really IS hyper-sexualization in our society. So now my question is, is the saturation of Western culture ALSO to blame on the warping effects of monotheism?

    This sounds curiously like GK Chesterton’s complaint in his “Orthodoxy”: it seems any stick is good to beat Christianity with.

    I’m quite sure that we will disagree on what constitutes “natural sexual desires and experiences” but I think the more interesting game is to hear if there are ANY sexual desires and experiences that you do NOT think are natural–and the principles by which you define that.

    “these seem far more salient to me in the frustrations of Elliot Rodger than the tenuous eugenical associations in his grandiose pie-in-the-sky fantasy of how he would set things right.”

    This seems like confirmation bias, to me. I didn’t say anything at all about how he was driven to what he was doing because he wanted to establish a eugenic utopia. All I did was point out that in this passage, he did, in fact, make a eugenic argument. I provided very little commentary. You read into it.

    If I were to offer an analysis on that, I still wouldn’t agree with you on your analysis. Your deeply seated guilt at being born a white male, combined with your a/anti-religious indifference to the power and impact of a stable marriage between just one man and one woman, has blinded you to what were the real underlying psychological factors–the divorce of his parents, the abandonment by his father, and, if I’m reading between the lines of his manifesto correctly, the hedonistic culture and society that he was raised in.

    All your jazz about “Christianity as well as in many other religions” was all very humorous, but I do thank you for clarifying your meaning. You do realize that Christianity in no way views sexuality as tainted with evil? In the beginning, God created man and woman and told them to go have lotsa sex, and said it was GOOD.

    I suppose, though, that if you dispense with Genesis, you may very be inclined, even if you claim to be a Christian, to view sexuality through a power paradigm.

    BTW, I’ve seen/read about a lot of the carousing that young males are out there doing. Every year, there are stories about what goes on during ‘spring break.’ Besides the fact that there are a lot of ladies involved, you know, I never got the idea that these young men bent on ‘conquest’ have God, religion, or Christianity, or really anything metaphysical on their minds. Anyway, if you can produce for me one of these young men’s blog entries detailing how they scored with a virgin, raised their fist in a great hurrah! and then proclaiming the Gospel and falling into a delicious discourse on how his many conquests should submit to their animal desires, I’d greatly appreciate it.

    At minimum, I’d take the viewpoint a little more seriously. 😉

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  14. Tony,

    “By ‘not just yours’ did you mean you included, or all of us suffering from ‘white privilege’?”

    I think that all of us, whatever our ethnicity, suffer some detrimental effects from the existence of white privilege, yes.  That isn’t what I was talking about though – I meant that we all suffer from confirmation bias, so you and I are unlikely to agree on this topic, whichever one of us has more facts on his side.

    “Anyway, if I understand this correctly, whether it is a ‘prize’ or a ‘shame’, any kind of attitude towards ‘virginity’ must be understood with “reference to our major religions.””

    Any kind of attitude within that ascribes any particular significance to virginity, yes I would say so.  That comes from a place of patriarchal religious hegemony.

    “So now my question is, is the saturation of Western culture [with sexualisation] ALSO to blame on the warping effects of monotheism?”

    I wouldn’t say that, but cause and effect are often hard to pin down.  I do think that some of the negative effects that you ascribe to the sexual liberalism of the 1960s & ’70s are traceable to the backlash against religiously-inspired sexual repression, and (just like the burning of churches during the Spanish Civil War) sometimes justifiable rebellions can swing the pendulum too far the other way.  There is also a huge element of commercial opportunism getting ever better at honing-in on and exploiting primal human drives involved here too – and what would you, as a libertarian, do to correct that free market-driven trend?  I wonder, I really do wonder.

    “I think the more interesting game is to hear if there are ANY sexual desires and experiences that you do NOT think are natural–and the principles by which you define that.”

    No I think that most sexual desires and experiences are “natural” in the sense that they are either direct inheritances or logical developments of behaviours exhibited by our close evolutionary cousins.  Natural is NOT a synonym for “good”, before either you or EB starts wilfully misinterpreting that….

    “Your deeply seated guilt at being born a white male…”

    Why would I feel guilty about that?  I had no say over the gender or ethnicity that I was born with.

    That is a specific accusation – I will state this as neutrally as I can having spent a reasonable amount of time arguing with white nationalists – which has been more commonly levelled at me by those who espouse great pride in their whiteness and masculinity. It is a mighty convenient way for conservatives to implicitly exculpate themselves from any charge of being selfish and uncompassionate in the face of their traditional resistance towards measures aimed at redressing centuries-old patterns of racial and gender-based discrimination. I can only assure you that in my own case at least (the only one I can speak of definitively) it is way off the mark.

    “…has blinded you to what were the real underlying psychological factors–the divorce of his parents, the abandonment by his father, and, if I’m reading between the lines of his manifesto correctly, the hedonistic culture and society that he was raised in.”

    Interesting that your commitment to the philosophy of total free will ebbs so quickly in the presence of influencing factors that could be perceived as incriminating liberal or progressive viewpoints.  Yes, if only divorce was punishable and society was controlled by some sort of overriding moral authority, then maybe this man-child wouldn’t have felt compelled to kill a whole bunch of people.  That seems like something an authentic libertarian might say.

    Also if he hadn’t, as a man, expected that he had a (one might almost say) divine right of access to women’s bodies.  Where on earth could he have picked up such a notion?

    “You do realize that Christianity in no way views sexuality as tainted with evil? In the beginning, God created man and woman and told them to go have lotsa sex, and said it was GOOD.”

    You and your swinging hedonistic Christian theology! 🙂

    I don’t think that it can be maintained with a straight face that many prominent early Christian thinkers (and sometimes later saints) have not held just as dim a view of women as they had of Jews.  It’s not up to me to argue with St Paul, Tertulian or Luther when they discourse on the proper subservient and shameful place of over half our species.  That’s for you to do – don’t give me grief about it!

    “Anyway, if you can produce for me one of these young men’s blog entries detailing how they scored with a virgin, raised their fist in a great hurrah! and then proclaiming the Gospel and falling into a delicious discourse on how his many conquests should submit to their animal desires, I’d greatly appreciate it.”

    Does any suggestion of ideological influence now have to be supported by an explicit and meticulously-itemised declaration of fealty to the allegedly proximal philosophy?  It seems like applying that principle rigorously would make your dissertation a whole lot shorter.

    By the way, anytime you could get around to authorising my response on the “Death of the Republic” thread I’d really appreciate it. I spent a bit of time on it, but made the slight error of putting more than one web link in it.

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