Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Dual Careers and Sex

Excerpt from Amanda Hess in Slate
Gottlieb’s story relies heavily on a 2012 study (PDF) published in the American Sociological Review that found that when men in heterosexual marriages performed chores that are traditionally coded as feminine—like “folding laundry, cooking or vacuuming”—the couple had sex less frequently. But if the husband performed traditionally masculine chores, like mowing the lawn or taking out the trash, the couples “reported a 17.5 percent higher frequency of sexual intercourse”—and the wives were more sexually satisfied, too. The data on which the study is based was collected 20 years ago, when the husband who cooks dinner or does the dishes was still an anomaly, but Gottlieb cites one contemporary couple she’s treated in her psychotherapy practice as further evidence of the trend. The couple came to her looking for help distributing their career and household duties but found that once their responsibilities were balanced, their sex life suffered. The wife claimed that she was highly sexually attracted to her husband ”when you’re just back from the gym and you’re all sweaty and you take off your clothes to get in the shower and I see your muscles,” but that desire turns to irritation when the husband tossed his dirty clothes onto the floor, sparking an argument about his failure to vacuum the house. “So if I got out the vacuum, then you’d be turned on?” the husband asked. “Actually, probably not,” she replied. “The vacuuming would have killed the weight-lifting vibe.”

J'C rant here:

To the lady for whom the weight lifting vibe was turned off by vacuuming: Get out of that business suit, buy a Victoria Secret's maid uniform, do the vacuuming yourself and be ready when he comes home from the gym after a hard days work sucking up to the boss to pay for the secret.

As one who has been there, and done that with two high powered jobs and two high maintenance kids in the household, sex frequently was a cuddle in bed before sleep.  If we both had any energy left the cuddle might get more active, but the sexual attraction in either case was two multifaceted jobs at work and at home well done for the benefit of the family. 

Having to be turned on by some socially mandated "vibe" misses the point of sexual equality in the first place.  If one is a sex object on either side of the bed.  Forget the equality, you will never understand.  Go buy the maid outfit and find a partner that can afford it in exchange for sex. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Is Death an Extinction?

Is death an extinction

In the sense of the particular body, certainly.  In the sense of the whole person probably not.  That person has influenced others and for better or for worse that person will be remembered by those influenced.  "Visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them."  Actually God is a piker.  The iniquity of some is visited on human memories for millennia, if only in myth.  

On the other side of the moral ledger those that have enriched human culture will be remembered as long a people can make music and tell stories.  Homer, Jesus, Shakespeare, Palestrina, Mozart and countless others are long since returned to the stardust of their origins.  To say they are extinct is the raving of a fool.  One can easily understand that the kid that sang "Twinkle, twinkle little star" or more likely "Ah vous dirai-je, Maman," to Mozart still lives on in Mozart's 12 Variations. 

Pain and Death and Morality

Humans and other social animals work very hard to eradicate pain because pain is next to death on the spectrum of things to try to avoid. There is a problem, however, in that humans have been inventing tools, weapons and machines that are designed to inflict pain and death in order to conquer and use other humans for thousands of years. Somebody want to continue this thought? I don't know exactly where to go with it. .christine3

Inflicting pain and death is part of survival for predators and frequently pain and risk of death are part of predation.  And humans are certainly predators.  Avoiding pain and death is a characteristic more of prey than predators, and social prey animals develop moral strategies to minimize pain and death for the social unit.  One universal moral imperative is protect the next generation at any cost.  Although it might be argued that this is a species survival instinct rather than a moral precept for our purposes the difference is probably insignificant. 

The real problem for humans is that they are both prey and predators.  In tribal societies (aren't we all) especially nomadic tribes resources are generally controlled by other humans and tribal survival means better killing tools, weapons and machines and not incidentally tribal moral imperatives that encourage their use.  Kill or subdue all the heathen, gentiles, or other "non-humans" that is, not us,  with the fear of pain and death.   It is no accident that religious morals distinguish strongly between "us" and "them" and discourage any sympathy or empathy for them. 

It is perhaps significant that the "thems" have not only developed highly efficient defensive killing and pain inflicting weapons, but have also developed more inclusive moral imperatives that recognize others as important as well.  Probably the most radical and important moral innovation of the Enlightenment was that all are equal.  OK all men, but that was the critical break with the "Us v. Them" morality.  And put the human race on the slippery slope to the humane treatment of all.  There are still those trying to claw their way back up the slope to the rock of hatred, frequently led by God the rock, but those "defensive" horror weapons in the hands of the relatively enlightened are formidable intimidators of the remaining predator humans. 

Interestingly one of the most intimidating of those weapons is the Enlightenment idea that all are equal.  The people in the streets have no fear of pain or death, and can in fact defy the most powerful offensive weapons.  See Tiananman Square or Kent State University. Certainly many were hurt and killed, but the mores of the world were radically changed.

Incidentally, I would put pain as a much greater fear than death. Suicide is a common solution to pain, emotional and physical. Three banksters seem to have heard the call to jail them and fear the pain that will be inflicted if those calls are implemented.