Foreign Policy Magazine: The Death of Macho

16 07 2009

Foreign Policy mag death of Macho art

The Death of Macho:

The era of male dominance is coming to an end.

Seriously.

For years, the world has been witnessing a quiet but monumental shift of power from men to women. Today, the Great Recession has turned what was an evolutionary shift into a revolutionary one. . . .

Things will only get worse for men as the recession adds to the pain globalization was already causing. . . Worse still, men are falling even further behind in acquiring the educational credentials necessary for success in the knowledge-based economies that will rule the post-recession world. Soon, there will be three female college graduates for every two males in the United States, and a similarly uneven outlook in the rest of the developed world.

. . .What this all means is that the problem of macho run amok and excessively compensated is now giving way to macho unemployed and undirected—a different but possibly just as destructive phenomenon.

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17 responses

16 07 2009
JJ

No wonder Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity and all their elected counterparts are so cranky.

Too bad their education and life experience has proven so limited (narrow, ignorant) and reliant on the societal advantages white men and especially American white men enjoyed in the past. They aren’t likely to adapt well to a larger, more meaningfully diverse, interconnected and intellectually challenging human reality.

17 07 2009
JJ

Here’s some macho and muddled, not to mention unChristlike, rhetoric:

In an interview with the evangelical World Magazine titled “The Taxpayers’ Greatest Ally,” Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) had some interesting things to say about his work with his colleagues in the Senate:

“I am not going to be able to persuade my colleagues to do the right things, so I am just going to have to create pain.”

Okay, that is a bit intense. However, it may not even be the most intense statement from Sen. DeMint this week. On a conference call this morning, DeMint discussed health care reform: “This health care issue Is D-Day for freedom in America… If we’re able to stop Obama on this it will be his Waterloo. It will break him.

Unschooled Young Son knows a good bit about military history, way more than I do already. He informs me that apart from D-Day having taken place IN France, FOR France i.e. to liberate rather than destroy and take over France — that the “allies” who defeated Napoleon (and let’s not forget, France itself) at Waterloo, were Russia and Prussia plus Austria and England. And that say what you will about Napoleon, things were pretty ugly thereafter for France, never returning to the glory days, so the losers were her people, not just Napoleon as a man but his country and cause . . .

Over the next few decades France ushered in three kings and one president while having two revolutions. France would never regain the glory (la gloire!) of Napoleon; though most of the 1800s would be spent trying to do that and with some notably disastrous results later in the century.
. . . The victorious [armies] met in Vienna to decide what to do with France.

So what does DeMint imagine, that he and Newt and Rush and Sarah Palin et al will meet with Russia to decide what to do with America, after they vanquish our rightful leader?

17 07 2009
JJ

While I was looking up French history after Waterloo, I came across the BEST chapter title, in a 1908 book by William Grinton Berry:

“Dancing Gaily to Perdition”

😀

Another deliciously-titled chapter in the same book is “Veering and Tackling.”

17 07 2009
writestuff444

I was just talking to a right of center, far right, friend the other day and I asked her this very question..what does she envision would happen if her dream came true and this man, our rightfully elected president was overthrown. I think there’s an element who when they talk about the ousted guy in ..oh..where is it in South america?..Anyway, I think they think that could really happen here..if enough pain were caused, Americans would rise up and just kick Obama out..I think they really believe that could happen and that Civil War wouldn’t follow..that the rest of us would just accede to that,,to whatever “pain” the Demints of our country are willing to cause to protect us from socialism..

18 07 2009
JJ

Right, just lie back and enjoy the inevitable (rape) — they’re Chosen and this is all god’s plan, and torture saves lives and hunger is a positive motivator.

18 07 2009
NanceConfer

Maybe you don’t have to imagine much of anything if your primary focus is holding onto power. You are not that concerned about other people, not really into that “empathy” thing, so you just fight. You throw up any nonsense in every argument and see what sticks. You have no obligation to stick to the facts or worry about the long-term implications of your immediate goals.

See how much easier that is than trying to solve problems by balancing the long-term needs of the most people?

But if you have never been anything but top dog, how and when were you supposed to learn how to care about others?

Poor old white guys. . .

Next thing you know, people will expect them to give up their gold-plated healthcare in order to truly understand what the rest of us are talking about. Since they don’t seem to get it in the abstract.

I overheard this idea this morning on C-Span but I think the caller thought it was a brilliant talking point for the right — that the members of Congress be forced into the public option plan (whatever it turns out to be) if they think it’s so great. I thought it sounded like a fine idea. And I’m over here on the left. 🙂

Nance

18 07 2009
writestuff444

I heard the same thing,,and I actually remembered something about Obama saying..he’d like to see the public option be the same as the one he had in the Senate..so maybe, it goes the other way..works for me!

19 07 2009
Crimson Wife

If I believed that Obamacare would give everyone the same quality healthcare that Senators got, I’d be all for it. Unfortunately, I suspect it would instead be like the military healthcare, which was *AWFUL*.

19 07 2009
JJ

CW, I think you make a good point, maybe not the one you intend. This is all very much dependent on what people perceive and believe.

20 07 2009
NanceConfer

Fortunately, these are not the choices, CW — gold-plated versus “awful.”

Nance

20 07 2009
JJ

Right, that’s the Logic of Failure. The perfect as the enemy of the good.

20 07 2009
Nance Confer

And I’d want to know what was so “awful.”

I have heard — we’ve all seen the headlines — the horror stories of VA hospital care. But then I read stories of vets who love their healthcare through the VA.

The awful part? Is it the red tape? The cost? The lack of facilities? Lack of doctors? Outcome? Etc. Which personal experiences have translated into a bad feeling?

And are these issues things that healthcare reform is seeking to address or are these problems being ignored? Do we know?

I try to follow along, reading blogs and watching the TV news shows. But I don’t really know what the final reform package will look like and I’m pretty sure nobody does.

So I don’t really know what people are against. Against providing healthcare to people who need it? Surely not. Against less profit for health insurance companies and more care for more people? Is that the concern? How many people are big health insurance execs? 🙂

Or is there a serious concern that changing the current system will be a death blow to capitalism in America? Really? Nobody has been convincing on this point so far.

The one stat that has caught my ear has been the large percentage of the US economy that is made up of heathcare related businesses. It’s a big chunk — I thought I had read it was 20%+ but this article says 18% — http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSTRE5510RC20090602.

So redirecting part of that — and you can see why Obama doesn’t think abolishing private insurance would be a good idea — it would be too destabilizing — that’s going to topple our empire? That doesn’t ring true to me.

And the article above says Obama’s team says reform would actually be good for the economy. Which makes sense to me from a certainty standpoint — if individuals and small businesses know they can count on healthcare, at a reasonable cost, that has to be good for long-term planning. The sort of planning you would do if you are thinking of hiring people.

I can see, and discussed it with DH a few days ago when we were trying to read through the different plans outlined in the paper, that the first year or so of a new healthcare system is going to be a mess. A bureaucratic nightmare.

It will be difficult.

Is that really a good enough reason not to do it?

Nance

20 07 2009
JJ

Going to the moon was difficult and expensive, and with no immediate clear practical benefit. A lot of people say that means we shouldn’t have done it and should never do anything like that again . . .

20 07 2009
Nance Confer

Exactly. 🙂

Nance

20 07 2009
JJ

Nance, btw, I know sports isn’t your thing but Young Son and I heard the BEST cultural-history book interview on NPR today that I think you’d really like, with an author whose book is supposedly about black baseball great Satchel Paige but as he said today, is REALLY about the Jim Crow era, and meant especially to reach teens today, who wouldn’t read a book about that, but might well read a book about a baseball great —

Satchel Paige pre-dated Jackie Robinson by a generation.

You might want to give it a look, or at least a listen.
The Diane Rehm Show

Satchel: Confronting Racism One Fastball at a Time

A Fastball Wrapped in a Riddle

20 07 2009
JJ

Timeless American power of story:

As one of the great showmen in American history, Paige understood that the best stories were meant to be enjoyed, not necessarily believed. Having spent most of his career in the Negro leagues, he had to sell, sell, sell, and he did that at least as well as he pitched. As a result, he became the greatest and most lasting symbol of black baseball in America, as much a hero as Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio or Jackie Robinson.

In many ways, Paige was ahead of his time. . .like many of today’s athletes, he was self-centered and boorish. He neglected his mother, cheated on his wives, abandoned his teammates and abused his fans by failing to show up for ballgames. . .Paige himself summed it up much more evocatively after he was inducted into the Hall of Fame, in 1971.

“The only change,” he said, “is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal.”

Even then, at the age of 65, the man could still bring the heat.

20 07 2009
writestuff444

Nance, you so impress me with your summary of the whole health care debate. You covered it for me. I’ve been guilty of second guessing the health care reform effort. I start thinking maybe he should slow down..like the GOP says..

And then you just put it all in perspective for me. I like your thinking.

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