Sunday, October 22, 2017

Controlling wives and vengeful divorcees are putting men off marriage for life

What Peter Lloyd says below is similar to what I have often said.  Feminist-inspired divorce laws have made marriage a huge risk for men.  Unlike Peter, however, I have been married four times with minimal financial damage and I am still on good terms with the ladies concerned.  How did I manage that?  A major reason is that I married nice ladies to start with but I also never lie to women.  Simple, really

Making a speech in honour of my parents at their golden wedding anniversary last month, I spoke of my deep pride in their great achievement.

Here are two people, I told family and friends, who epitomise all that is good about marriage: a couple who put their egos to one side to raise their family and nurture a lifelong bond. I meant every word.

But what I left out is that, despite growing up with such a positive example, nothing will ever persuade me to follow the same path.

I will never, ever marry. That’s because the kind of traditional marriage that saw my mum and dad thrive no longer exists. It has been replaced with a modern version so warped that it has ceased to become an institution worth entertaining. Well, not for men anyway.

Indeed, I’ve written a book on the plight of modern man and recently I spoke on national radio imploring every unmarried man to avoid going up the aisle.

It was in response to Iain Duncan Smith’s astonishing claims, made during the Conservative Party conference, that unmarried men are ‘dysfunctional’ human beings and a blight on society.

The former work and pensions secretary said that, out of wedlock, men are ‘released to do all the things they wouldn’t normally do’ — in other words to behave like feckless idiots, committing crime, drinking too much, taking drugs and fathering multiple children.

What nonsense. Marriage doesn’t ‘fix’ or sustain men. I’d argue it does the very opposite, so weighted are our divorce laws towards women.

To illustrate my point, I suggested that a man might as well find a woman who hates him and buy her a house to live in, while he grubs around in a bedsit.

Because, in my view, that’s the brutal reality of what marriage does to men. He’d be better off, financially and emotionally, staying single.

Of course, I appear to be horribly contradicting myself — lauding my parents’ achievement one day and hammering marriage the next. But actually I’m just being realistic. Modern marriages simply aren’t built to last in the way they were when my mum and dad got married.

The year they tied the knot — 1967 — there were just over 43,000 divorces in England and Wales. You can roughly treble that figure today.

This means that as soon as you legally commit to a woman now, no matter how much you love her, you take the most reckless gamble on your future wealth, health and happiness.

The risk being that if it all goes wrong — and around 42 per cent of marriages fail — then matrimonial law, the family courts, indeed society as a whole, will conspire to ensure the biggest loser in the equation ends up being you.

Then there’s the mental impact. According to a 2013 survey, divorce makes men feel devastated, betrayed, confused and even suicidal. Women are more likely to feel relieved, liberated and happy following a split.

Research by Yorkshire Building Society showed that two years after a divorce, 41 per cent of men were still sad; for women the figure was just 33 per cent.

Those figures don’t surprise me. I have a friend who was married for just three years when his wife filed for divorce. She never worked and the house was solely in his name, but — because they had a one-year-old — she gets to live in it until the child turns 18 or finishes full-time education.

He now lives in a studio flat and works constant overtime trying to pay his rent, the mortgage, plus child support. Meanwhile, she still doesn’t have a job.

Another friend, who divorced more than ten years ago, was recently taken back to court because his ex-wife wanted more money after racking up credit card debts. Incredibly, she won, and he had to cough up another £12,000, plus legal fees, despite the fact they haven’t been married for a decade.

I know someone else — a successful lawyer — who’s been paying maintenance to his first wife longer than he’s been married to his second. The thing is, I’m not against relationships — not at all.

I’ve committed to relationships in the past and, as much as I’m currently happily single, hope to do so again in the future. But my friends’ salutary experiences mean I’ll never make it legally binding, no matter how in love I might be.

I feel the same way about becoming a father: it’s just too risky while women wield all the power, not only over when and if children are conceived, but also over whether the man is allowed to continue to play a role in a child’s life.

Think about it. The minute a man ‘puts a ring on it’, as the song goes, he stands to lose his home, access to his children and a huge chunk of his pension, too.

And nobody seems to bat an eyelid. When did you last hear of a man being the one to stay in the marital home, whether or not he pays the mortgage on it? What separated father do you know who gets to tuck his kids into bed every night? Meanwhile, the woman ending the marriage — and with 68 per cent of proceedings instigated by the woman, she’s the one most likely to — gets to walk away with a potential life-long meal ticket.

Mine might sound like a dystopian take on the world, but the depressing truth is that too often men who marry end up being treated as little more than sperm donors and cash machines. And so the best thing we can do to protect ourselves is not to bother in the first place.

The sad reality, as I see it, is that the writing’s on the wall from the moment a man proposes.

That’s when he gets sucked into a cripplingly expensive vortex, where getting married becomes more about the bride and an impending occasion than any emotional commitment.

What starts with an expensive diamond ring — typically costing at least £2,000 — evolves into the all-consuming organisation of an event where the groom plays little more than a walk-on role.

A wedding today typically costs £17,000 — my parents’ Sixties generation paid on average £50. And no matter how much you contribute financially, what you want out of that day is inconsequential, because remember, it’s not about you. At which point, a pattern is set.

Sadly, there’s even more bad news. Your sex life tends to dwindle after marriage.

A recent survey of 3,000 couples found that those who’d had sex four times a week before their wedding did it just once a week afterwards. Of course, you could argue that this has long been the case, and that my father was taking just as big a risk when he proposed to my mum.

But when they embarked on marriage, my parents shared the same expectations of it, while respecting what each was bringing to the table.

They worked as a team, with Dad the breadwinner and Mum happy to stay at home raising my three older sisters and me.

It’s an unfashionable opinion to express, but to me what they had was true equality.

Even if it happens to be the kind that modern feminism baulks at.


After 5 cheerleaders take a knee during national anthem, college takes them off the football field

Following a lead set by former NFL quarterback and radical leftist, Colin Kaepernick, an isolated group of “ill-informed” black cheerleaders at Kennesaw State University are getting plenty of media attention after taking a knee during the national anthem at a recent football game.

And that media attention is sure to grow now that the Georgia school plans to move the protesting cheerleaders off the field for Saturday’s homecoming game, according to The Associated Press.

Dubbed the “Kennesaw Five” — because catchy phrases sell — the cheerleaders will now be kneeling outside the view of fans in the tunnel of the 8,300-seat Fifth Third Bank Stadium — the students say they are protesting police brutality and racism.

Cheerleader Shlondra Young told the news agency they are being “purposely hidden” from public view. “I feel as though it was an attempt to silence us,” she said. “But even though they are moving us, we will not be silenced.”

University spokeswoman Tammy DeMel said in a statement that the school’s athletic department meets “to determine how best to enhance the game day atmosphere,” and while she did not mention the anthem, she noted “other changes,” to include “painting the KS logo at midfield for the first time, processes to help expedite fan entry, and more loud speakers by the student section.”

The story first drew attention when Cobb County Sheriff Neil Warren, who regularly attends football games at the school, called Kennesaw State President Sam Olens and complained about the previous protest — Warren said he was assured by Olens “that this will not happen again.”

“Cobb County has lost sons and daughters at home and on foreign lands while protecting America,” the sheriff said.

“And to witness these ill-informed students acting this way clearly tells me KSU needs to get busy educating these students on more than just passing their classes,” Warren continued. “They need to learn all that the flag truly represents.”


Corporate PC vs. Patriotism

The widow of a military veteran was denied the ability to honor a fallen soldier by singing the national anthem.

On a Delta Airlines flight from Philadelphia to Atlanta on Saturday, a U.S. soldier was flying with the body of his fallen comrade. During the flight it was announced that upon landing the passengers were to remain seated as the soldier deplaned and as the honor guard escorted the casket from the plane.

Upon hearing the announcement, Pamela Gaudry, a widow of a career veteran, was inspired to honor the fallen soldier and went around the plane asking people if they would sing the national anthem with her once the plane landed while the honor guard removed the casket. She said that many but not all the passengers agreed to join her.

Later, after she was back in her seat, she said, “The chief flight attendant came back to my seat and she kneeled down and she said, ‘It is against company policy to do what you’re doing.’ And I said, ‘The national anthem? And there’s a soldier onboard?’ And she said, ‘Yes, you cannot sing the national anthem. It is against company policy.’”

After the plane landed, all the passengers including Gaudry remained silent as the casket was removed. Feeling ashamed for remaining silent, however, Gaudry, upon exiting the plane, posted a video detailing her lack of courage and what she had been told about Delta’s policy.

The video has since gone viral, and Delta spokesman Anthony Black responded stating, “There is not a policy about singing the national anthem, period.”

So where did the flight attendant come up with this false Delta policy idea? Part of the answer may be in another statement the flight attendant made. According to Gaudry, the flight attendant said that passengers from other countries might be made “uncomfortable” if the national anthem were to be sung.

Ah, the politically correct sensitivity that says displays of American patriotism may be deemed offensive by some and therefore should be suppressed. There are times when common decency should trump corporate policy. And the desire to express honor and gratitude to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice should be an obvious occasion. Has sensitivity to political correctness so dulled our cultural value for the need to express common decency?


It’s the Culture, Stupid

In Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign he used the phrase, “It’s the economy, stupid.” That economics is important is true, but it is far from the whole picture. In the ideological and political realm, economics is just one part of how social change takes place.

In many ways the real issue is the culture. Simply put, if you can change the culture, you can more easily change politics, laws, and most other things. Thus those who are involved in the culture wars must know that to affect real change, lasting change, you have to do more than just tinker at the edges of legislation or political campaigns.

You have to focus on the culture. Sadly the other side knows this. Thus we speak of cultural Marxism. Even the Marxists realised long ago that trying to change a nation from without with tanks and bullets was not working. So they learned that it was better and easier to destroy a nation by subverting it from within.

Thus the Italian Marxist Gramsci spoke of the “long march through the institutions”. He taught that capturing a culture by taking over key institutions of power and influence was the way to go. So the cultural Marxists deliberately targeted schools, courts, the media, the arts, politics and even churches.

They knew that aiming at changing the culture would be the best way to implement their goals. They chose evolutionary change over revolutionary change. And they have done exceedingly well at all this. All throughout the West the secular left basically owns our institutions.

They are running things and calling the shots: the media, academia, law and politics are all pretty much under their control. They knew the value of targeting the culture and they have therefore been hugely successful in promoting their agenda items.

And the obverse has largely been true from our side. We have not engaged the culture. If anything, most conservatives and Christians have pulled out of the culture. They have abandoned politics and the other institutions of influence. They have adopted a siege mentality, which has basically handed the other side the culture on a silver platter.

By disengaging from all these fronts, the other side has won by default. And now we wonder why we keep losing in so many areas. Be it the culture of death, or the sleaze culture, or the war on marriage and family, the other side keeps winning because they are fully engaged, and we keep losing because we are asleep at the wheel.

Thus we have a very minimalist approach to the culture wars. Many people on our side think that if they sign a petition to protect marriage, or send in a $10 donation to some pro-family group, they have done their bit to save Western civilisation. They think they can go back to sleep for another year or two, and then maybe sign another petition.

Um, that is not how we are going to win. That in fact is exactly how we will lose – and keep on losing. Our commitment to what matters is almost non-existent. We certainly do not think in terms of the long term and the big picture. I have written before about why this is so very important:

So the other side keeps on winning because they do see the bigger picture and they are in it for the long haul. Some on our side have seen the importance of getting fully into the wars, and not just a quick visit to a few of the skirmishes. This can be seen from a spiritual/theological point of view, or a cultural/political point of view.

The former I have discussed elsewhere, as in the above link, and in pieces like this:

But let me look a bit more at the latter. As mentioned, some folks know the value of reaching the culture and not just fiddling with the occasional bit of legislation. Back in 1996 Robert Bork wrote a very important volume called Slouching Towards Gomorrah.

It is a first-class analysis of the mess we are in – at least in America – and how things might be turned around. Let me offer just one brief section of the book. In his final chapter, “Can Democratic Government Survive?,” he writes these words:

"Elections are important not only because of the policies adopted and laws enacted but as symbolic victories for one set of values or the other. But it is well to remember the limits of politics. The political nation is not the same as the cultural nation; the two have different leaders and very different views of the world. Even when conservative political leaders have the votes, liberal cultural leaders operate and exercise influence where votes do not count.

However many political victories conservatives may produce, they cannot attack modern liberalism in its fortresses. If conservatives come to control the White House and both Houses of Congress, there will be very little change in Hollywood, the network evening news, universities, church bureaucracies, the New York Times, or the Washington Post.

Institutions that are overwhelmingly left-liberal (89 percent of journalists voted for Bill Clinton in 1992) will continue to misinform the public and distort public discourse. The obscenities of popular entertainment will often be protected by the courts. The tyrannies of political correctness and multiculturalism will not be ejected from the universities by any number of conservative victories at the polls.

Modern liberals captured the government and its bureaucracies because they captured the culture. Conservative political victories will always be tenuous and fragile unless conservatives recapture the culture…. This is at bottom a moral and spiritual struggle"

Or as Chuck Colson put it in a much more simplified version: “Politics is downstream from culture.” Unless we seek to change the culture, a few changes to laws, or a few Parliamentary victories just will not get us very far. Yes, we must be engaged in the political and legislative battles, but the real battleground is the culture.

Let me look at just one more thinker on all this. David French speaks about the death of our culture, especially in the area of education, and how the only resort for many may be things like home-schooling. He too sees the bigger picture, and realises that one key component of culture is education, and when the educational system is hostile to our very values and beliefs, we will likely get nowhere fast.

He writes:

"The stakes are now clear: We must fix our education system or slowly but surely lose our culture. Indeed, virtually every other conservative endeavor — whether it’s winning elections, transforming media, or infiltrating pop culture — will fail if the entire edifice of public education is arrayed against us.

The system, however, can’t be reformed from within: It’s stacked top-to-bottom with progressive activists even in red states. We must fix our education system or slowly but surely lose our culture. So that means creating a new model. States should consider rejecting federal education funding entirely (Texas is considering doing just that).

At the very least, charter schools should be completely disentangled — and not just from public employees’ unions but also from federal funds (in order to insulate them from federal influence); voucher systems should be dramatically expanded — giving every family the option to spend their share of tax dollars at the school of their choice; and private institutions and philanthropists should step up to provide needed funding.

Indeed, private citizens don’t have to wait for government reform. Scholarship funds can expand the ranks of tuition-paying private-school students immediately, and coalitions of churches can provide substantial support for their communities’ best private schools"

Many more folks have said similar things, and a whole book could be produced along these lines. But the point is, the other side is a lot more cluey than most of us are when it comes to capturing the culture. They have been successful at it while we have for the most part failed.

Of course questions remain. Is education redeemable or is it too far gone? Is home-schooling the only viable option for the near future? What about independent schools and Christian schools. Is culture itself too far gone, or with God’s grace can we win back at least some of it?

There are plenty of such questions that we have to deal with here. There are no easy answers or solutions, and conservatives and Christians will differ on what is the best approach to take in some of these areas. But at the very least we need to be thinking about such matters.

But I think it can be safely said that we keep losing because we have not taken our biblical duties seriously, including the command of Jesus for us to be salt and light. By running away from culture, instead of engaging with it, we have not been true to our calling to extend the Lordship of Christ into all areas of life. Instead, we have just handed it all to our opponents.

No wonder we keep losing.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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