Tag Archives: Idealism

Occupy Wall Street mom divorces husband for $85K, abandons her kids

Tom sent me this article from the New York Post. Read the article and decide who you think is to blame.

Excerpt:

She’s protesting banks — but still getting a bailout.

The Florida housewife who abandoned her family to join Occupy Wall Street is divorcing, giving up custody of her four kids and taking a big payout from her husband.

Professional protester Stacey Hessler is legally splitting from her hubby, Curtiss, but not before waltzing off with a portfolio that includes cash and his 401(k) retirement fund, filled with stocks and other instruments of American capitalism.

The divorce settlement, filed Oct. 16, awards Occu-Mom the $79,585 fund and a $5,800 bank account. Her total take: $85,385.

The filing lists Curtiss’ occupation as banker and says he earns $65,000 a year. Her job is listed in court papers as “protester” and her employer as “Occupy Wall Street.” Annual salary: $0.

Divorce papers cite “irreconcilable differences” for the split, saying the 19-year marriage “is irretrievably broken.”

One OWS protester who knows her says that Stacey’s devotion to the movement caused the divorce but that she was unfazed by the breakup.

“She didn’t seem sad about any of it,” the source said. “It was just so matter-of-fact.”

[…]But she did respond when a Post reporter asked about a YouTube video showing her making out with another protester during an Occupy “Kiss In” on Valentine’s Day.

“I actually made out with four guys,” she said, laughing wildly.

Curtiss, 43, initiated the divorce in Volusia County, Fla., where the couple raised their family about 25 miles west of Daytona Beach.

So who is to blame? The bad woman who did bad things? Let’s take a look at it.

Who is to blame when things go wrong in a relationship?

My view is that the man in the story is to blame, because I think that whenever something goes wrong in a relationship, then the person whose expectations are dashed is to blame. The reason why I think this is because you have to take people as you find them and then vet them as if they were job applicants applying for the job of marriage. The job of marriage has very specific requirements, and these requirements are objective. Someone is going to have to raise the kids, someone is going to have to cook the meals, someone is going to have to earn the bulk of the money, someone is going to have to deal with the beasties that invade the home. The goal of the relationship is not to test the person to see if they are “fun” or whether your friends are envious. The goal of the relationship is to test the person for the role they will play in the marriage.

Does it work in reverse – are women responsible for their bad choices?

What I’ve found is that although many people see that the man is responsible when he makes a bad choice, they don’t see the reverse situation. So consider the case where a man has sex with and then dumps a woman, who expected him to marry her and have children. Who is to blame? On my view, it’s the woman who is to blame. The man was bad before she got there, and you cannot expect a bad man to act good, just because you imagine that he will. And giving him recreational sex won’t make him act good – even if you imagine it will. Imagination is not the equivalent of passing an interview with the woman’s father, and getting the father’s approval. Imagination is not a 12-year resume with no gaps. Imagination is not a $500,000 investment portfolio. Imagination is not a paid-off home. Imagination is not a handful of reference letters from his former girlfriends. If the woman relied on her imagination when choosing a bad man, then the woman is to blame for the bad man’s bad conduct. She needs to take responsibility.

Sometimes, what I’ve noticed is that women tend to focus on the bad thing that the men do that is counter to their expectations, because they project a standard of morality onto the man that the man expressly repudiates. In fact, I have actually met atheistic women who think that atheistic men should act based on some standard of morality. But the problem is that neither the atheist woman nor the atheist man accepts any objective standard of morality. If there is no designer to the universe, then the universe is an accident, and there is no way that we OUGHT to be. If there is no way we OUGHT to be, then there is no point in expecting anyone to be any way – it’s just your opinion against their opinion. So you have a woman expecting a man to act according to some standard that she doesn’t think is real by her own worldview!And meanwhile, the good men are passed by because we are “too strict”, “too religious”, “too moral”, “too chaste”, “too sober”, “too predictable” and “there is no chemistry”. (Chemistry = emotional craziness)

My conversation with a Christian woman

I had a conversation with a Christian woman a while back about this, and she could not see how a woman could be responsible for her choices in the same way that the man in the news story was responsible for his choices. So I invented a new example to show how men could be to blame, unlikely though that may be, since men are perfect in every way. This time, I imagined what would happen if a stripper-gram woman showed up at my door. I actually told the woman I was chatting with that I had to go because a stripper-gram HAD shown up. I told the woman how attractive the stripper was, and how I was in love with her, and wanted to marry her. How she undoubtedly was very wealthy, and well educated, and how she would help me to raise little Michele Bachmanns and William Lane Craigs. I waxed eloquently on her B.S. in integrated science with a minor in philosophy, her M.A. in economics and her Ph.D in International Studies. All of which I had no evidence for, except for the feelings aroused by the sight of her naked cleavage. Besides, I explained, it would be easier for me to change her to match my vision of her after we were married.

At this point, my debating partner began to see the point. She could see that this imaginary stripper was going to dash my expectations, and probably cheat on me, and spend all my savings on shoes, handbags, dresses, jewelry and breast implants. And who would be to blame? ME! Because I am the one who was refusing to court her properly, and instead inventing an entire future life together that the imaginary stripper and I had never discussed. The stripper had never demonstrated that she capable of meeting those requirements – or even willing to try. I never asked her to try – and that’s my fault.

Why some women make bad decisions about men

I actually know a Christian-raised atheist woman who co-habitated with a left-wing, global-warming atheist and then got pregnant and had an abortion, and she blamed the man for this. As if an atheist should be expected to believe in objective moral values and marriage! As if the man had been able to get her to co-habitate and get pregnant without her consent! She accepted no responsibility for her choice of this man whatsoever. And when I told her about the dangers of pre-marital sex and the importance of courting rules, she dismissed them as being too strict, claiming that a good job, chastity, virginity, apologetics, a firmly-grounded Christian faith, a rational basis for morality, sobriety, and so on, were all totally unnecessary for a sensible successful marriage. Still! After all that! Her criteria for a man? First, “chemistry”, which is another word for physical attraction. And second, the approval of her very impractical, immature peer group. After all that, she still rejected the idea that standards for choosing the right man were important and should override her emotions.

If things go wrong in a relationship, who is to blame?

I was having a discussion with a Christian woman last night (who can comment, if she likes) about who is to blame in relationships when things go wrong.

My basic contention is that whenever something goes wrong in a relationship, then the person whose expectations are dashed is to blame.

The reason why I think this is because you have to take people as you find them and then vet them as if they were job applicants applying for the job of marriage. The job of marriage has very specific requirements, and these requirements are objective. Someone is going to have to raise the kids, someone is going to have to cook the meals, someone is going to have to earn the bulk of the money, someone is going to have to deal with the beasties that invade the home. The goal of the relationship is not to test the person to see if they are “fun” or whether your friends are envious. The goal of the relationship is to test the person for the role they will play in the marriage.

So consider the case where a man has sex with and then dumps a woman, who expected him to marry her and have children. Who is to blame? On my view, it’s the woman who is to blame. The man was bad before she got there, and you cannot expect a bad man to act good, just because you imagine that he will. Imagination is not the equivalent of passing an interview with the woman’s father, and getting the father’s approval. Imagination is not a 12-year resume with no gaps. Imagination is not a $500,000 investment portfolio. Imagination is not a paid-off home. Imagination is not a handful of reference letters from his former girlfriends. If the woman relied on her imagination, then the woman is to blame for the man’s bad conduct.

Sometimes, what I’ve noticed is that women tend to focus on the bad thing that the men do that is counter to their expectations, because they project a standard of morality onto the man that the man expressly repudiates. In fact, I have actually met atheistic women who think that atheistic men should act based on some standard of morality. But the problem is that neither the atheist woman nor the atheist man accepts any objective standard of morality. If there is no designer to the universe, then the universe is an accident, and there is no way that we OUGHT to be. If there is no way we OUGHT to be, then there is no point in expecting anyone to be any way – it’s just your opinion against their opinion. So you have a woman expecting a man to act according to some standard that she doesn’t think is real by her own worldview!And meanwhile, the good men are passed by because we are “too strict”, “too religious”, “too moral”, “too chaste”, “too sober”, “too predictable” and “there is no chemistry”. (Chemistry = emotional craziness)

What this means is that women end up feeling free to drink as much as they want, have sex with whoever they want on the basis of appearance and popularity, and then expect that sex will cause the man to immediately propose with a diamond ring, a massive expensive wedding in Hawaii, a huge palatial home, and so on. The moral laws that might block a woman from doing bad things are “too strict” for her to follow, but they expect men to follow moral rules that they don’t follow themselves! Women actually believe that drunken hook-up sex will cause really immoral men to drop their hedonistic, atheistic lifestyles and act completely differently than they were before. What causes women to think this? It isn’t reason and evidence, that’s for sure. I think they think that men who are good looking and popular have some store of hidden virtue that is unlocked by having sex with the woman who is their “soul mate”. Somehow, a magical spell will come over a self-centered, muscle-bound lout and he will be filled with thoughts of marriage and babies. Women actually think that! And what happens is that after choosing the wrong man and getting pregnant, etc. with him, they blame the man for the subsequent abortions, affairs, domestic violence, etc. In short, the problem is this: women go to the pet store, pass by all the dogs and cats and bird, and bring home a trendy and attractive alligator, who then promptly bites each of their limbs off. And then the women complain that the alligator is very unfair and immoral. Who is really to blame here? The alligator, who is just doing what comes naturally for alligators, or the woman who passed the good pets by and brought home a monster?

It sounds like I am blaming women, but I’m not – but she wasn’t convinced. So I invented a new example to show how men could be to blame, unlikely though that may be, since men are perfect in every way. This time, I imagined what would happen if a stripper-gram woman showed up at my door. I actually told the woman I was chatting with that I had to go because a stripper-gram HAD shown up. I told the woman how attractive the stripper was, and how I was in love with her, and wanted to marry her. How she undoubtedly was very wealthy, and well educated, and how she would help me to raise little Michele Bachmanns and William Lane Craigs. I waxed eloquently on her B.A. in integrated science with a minor in philosophy of religion, M.A. in economics and her J.D. in defamation law. All of which I had no evidence for, except for the feelings of love aroused by the site of her naked cleavage. Besides, I explained, it would be easier for me to change her to match my boobie-induced delusions of her after we were married. At this point, my debating partner began to see the point. She could see that this imaginary stripper was going to dash my expectations, and probably cheat on me, and spend all my savings on shoes and breast implants. And who would be to blame? ME! Because I am the one who was refusing to court her properly, and instead inventing an entire future life together that the imaginary stripper and I had never discussed, nor was she capable of meeting those requirements.

I actually know a Christian-raised atheist woman who co-habitated with a left-wing, global-warming atheist and then got pregnant and had an abortion, and she blamed the man for this. As if an atheist should be expected to believe in objective moral values and marriage! As if the man had been able to get her to co-habitate and get pregnant without her consent! She accepted no responsibility for her choice of this man whatsoever. And when I told her about the dangers of pre-marital sex and the importance of courting rules, she dismissed them as being too strict, claiming that a good job, chastity, virginity, apologetics, a firmly-grounded Christian faith, a rational basis for morality, sobriety, and so on, were all totally unnecessary for a sensible successful marriage. Still! After all that! Her sole criteria for a man? CHEMISTRY! And the approval of her female peers, who were all penniless, up to their eyeballs in student loans and credit card debt, and had degrees in squishy-headed non-engineering/non-science fields, like English, Women’s Studies, Journalism and Peace Studies. Phooey!

So this kind of thing really happens, and many of the people who should bear the responsibility are oblivious to the fact that they have any duty at all to actually evaluate romantic partners rationally and objectively to see if they are able to meet the demands of marriage and parenting. People act as if drunkenness, partying, promiscuity and selfishness are pre-requisites to a good marriage. And that fathers have no role to play in setting out boundaries for their daughters and making them accountable for their decisions.

For all the men out there, if this sort of crazy irrational avoidance of responsibility strikes a chord with you, I urge you to go out and watch the 2008 movie “Taken” with Liam Neeson. For a more gritty dramatic movie, I recommend the movie “Thirteen”from 2003. Fathers matter. Husbands matter.

I was having a discussion with a Christian woman last night (who can comment, if she likes) about who is to blame in relationships when things go wrong.

My basic contention is that whenever something goes wrong in a relationship, then the person whose expectations are dashed is to blame.

The reason why I think this is because you have to take people as you find them and then vet them as if they were job applicants applying for the job of marriage. The job of marriage has very specific requirements, and these requirements are objective. Someone is going to have to raise the kids, someone is going to have to cook the meals, someone is going to have to earn the bulk of the money, someone is going to have to deal with the beasties that invade the home. The goal of the relationship is not to test the person to see if they are “fun” or whether your friends are envious. The goal of the relationship is to test the person for the role they will play in the marriage.

So consider the case where a man has sex with and then dumps a woman, who expected him to marry her and have children. Who is to blame? On my view, it’s the woman who is to blame. The man was bad before she got there, and you cannot expect a bad man to act good, just because you imagine that he will. Imagination is not the equivalent of passing an interview with the woman’s father, and getting the father’s approval. Imagination is not a 12-year resume with no gaps. Imagination is not a $500,000 investment portfolio. Imagination is not a paid-off home. Imagination is not a handful of reference letters from his former girlfriends. If the woman relied on her imagination, then the woman is to blame for the man’s bad conduct.

At this point, the woman in question started to disagree with me. She thought that all people (especially those evil men) should be expected to act like Christian theists, and that if they didn’t then they were to blame. In other words, people should feel feel free to drink as much as they want, have sex with whoever they want on the basis of appearance and popularity, and then expect that sex will cause the man to immediately propose with a diamond ring, a massive expensive wedding in Hawaii, a huge palatial home, and so on. Women actually belief that drunken hook-up sex will cause really immoral men to drop their hedonistic, atheistic lifestyles and cause men to act completely differently than they were before. What causes women to think this? It isn’t reason and evidence, that’s for sure. I think they think that men who are good looking and popular have some store of hidden virtue that is unlocked by having sex with the woman who is their “soul mate”. Somehow, a magical spell will come over a self-centered, muscle-bound lout and he will be filled with thoughts of marriage and babies. Women actually think that!

Well, she thought I was just blaming women again, which I love to do. So I invented a new example to show how men could be to blame, unlikely though that may be, since men are perfect in every way. This time, I imagined what would happen if a stripper-gram woman showed up at my door. I actually told the woman I was chatting with that I had to go because a stripper-gram HAD shown up. I told the woman who lovely the stripper was, and how I was in love with her, and wanted to marry her. How she undoubtedly was very wealthy, and would help me to raise little Michele Bachmanns and William Lane Craigs. I waxed eloquently on her B.A. in integrated science with a minor in philosophy of religion, M.A. in economics and her J.D. in defamation law. All of which I had no evidence for, except for the feelings of love aroused by the site of her naked cleavage. Besides, I explained, it would be easier for me to change her to match my boobie-induced delusions after we were married. At this point, my debating partner began to see the point. She could see that this imaginary stripper was going to dash my expectations, and probably cheat on me, and spend all my savings on shoes and breast implants. And who would be to blame? ME! Because I am the one who was refusing to court her properly, and instead inventing an entire future life together that the imaginary stripper and I had never discussed, nor was she capable of meeting those requirements.

So now I would like to hear from my commenters what they think about this way of assigning blame so that it is not based on the degree of bad thing that is done. Instead I assign blame to the person who chooses the wrong person for a relationship, for the wrong reasons, and then hopes to change that person later.

I actually know a Christian-raised woman who co-habitated with a left-wing, global-warming atheist and then got pregnant and had an abortion, and she blamed the man for this. As if an atheist should be expected to believe in objective moral values and marriage! As if the man had been able to get her to co-habitate and get pregnant without her consent! She accepted no responsibility for her choice of this man whatsoever. And when I told her about the dangers of pre-marital sex and the importance of courting rules, she dismissed them as being too strict, claiming that a good job, chastity, virginity, apologetics, a firmly-grounded Christian faith, a rational basis for morality, sobriety, and so on, were all totally unnecessary for a sensible successful marriage. Still! After all that! Her sole criteria for a man? CHEMISTRY! And the approval of her female peers, who were all penniless, up to their eyeballs in student loans and credit card debt, and had degrees in squishy-headed non-engineering/non-science fields, like English, Women’s Studies, Journalism and Grievance Mongering Socialist Theory. (That is a real degree at Wellesley College, I am pretty sure) Phooey!

So this kind of thing really happens, and many of the people who I think should bear the responsibility are oblivious to the fact that they have any duty at all to actually evaluate romantic partners rationally and objectively to see if they are able to meet the demands of marriage and parenting. People act as if drunkenness, partying, promiscuity and selfishness are pre-requisites to a good marriage. And that fathers have no role to play in setting out boundaries for their daughters and making them accountable for their decisions.

For all the men out there, if this sort of crazy irrational avoidance of responsibility strikes a chord with you, I urge you to go out and watch the 2008 movie “Taken” with Liam Neeson. For a more gritty dramatic movie, I recommend the movie “Thirteen”from 2003. Fathers matter. Husbands matter.

Arlemagne’s post on the dangers of sentimentality in relationships

Oh, this is really, really good. And you can’t say he’s pessimistic and cynical about marriage like me – because he is married.

Here’s the post at RuthBlog.

Excerpt:

In response to my earlier post about romantic love being more like addiction and quite a lot less like some deep spiritual connection, the comments section noted that my worldview is “sterile.”

Maybe.

But this view of romance is also most likely true.  Having a clear eyed view of the world has many advantages.

But that worldview is liberating.  Think about it.  In the realm of love and marriage, knowing the truth about the nature of romantic love can save a person from the disappointments consequent of unrealistic expectations.  This leads to happiness.  The fantasy realm of romanticism can lead to some very bad consequences.  Heck, don’t take it from me.  Just read Madam Bovary.

Then he cites this article from well-known social critic Theodore Dalrymple.

Excerpt:

WE should try hard to think clearly, said the great French scientist, mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal, for such is the foundation of morality.

Sentimentality is one of the worst enemies of clear thought and therefore of morality.  It is the preference of what we would like to be true over what actually is true, it persuades us that we are more compassionate than we really are. It is a form of make-believe. British public policy in many fields has been riddled with sentimentality for many years with disastrous effects on our society and on our economy. We are now paying a heavy price.

By the way, you can read an entire book by Theodore Dalrymple – it’s all free online.

I try hard to get the people that I care about to rethink their liberal political views – to begin to apply reason and evidence to their entire worldview. When a person relies on emotions to guide their decisions, it can cause tremendous damage, and especially to others – the spouse, the children, etc. Learning about the evils of postmodernism, moral relativism, etc. is also important.

Madame Bovary

On Arlemagne’s advice I’m watching Madame Bovary (1949) right now. It’s about a woman who reads crazy romance novels until she is bored with normal life and has to engage in affairs to find “romance” and “excitement”. It’s even BETTER than Anna Karenina and Great Expectations! I never learned so much about the dangers of selfishness in my entire life! You can read the entire book for free online, if you like. I never really had involved parents or any kind of religious and moral teaching at all, really. But when I read classics of literature like this, I learn a lot. It reminds me why I loved to read the classics so much as a child.

Cyrano de Bergerac

Here’s the greatest scene ever filmed from Cyrano de Bergerac: (this scene is just after Cyrano’s poetry-reciting duel with the impudent Comte de Guiche, and his subsequent fight with 100 armed men at the Porte de Nesle – the object of Cyrano’s affection has agreed to meet with him and he has high hopes that she has finally realized how much he loves her)

That clip is the greatest thing ever written. “It’s instinct that tells the biggest lies”. Indeed. Indeed. Truer words were never spoken.

“Oh, I have done better than that since then”

Are liberal lawyers and law professors in favor of open debate?

Here’s a great post over at Stuart Schneiderman’s blog.

The topic of the post is a high-profile meeting  of lawyers and law professors at NYU Law School to discuss the recent Supreme Court decision that allow businesses to make political donations to candidates in the same way that trial lawyer organizations and teacher unions and abortion providers do. The meeting was supposed to be an open and honest debate on the issues. Was it?

Excerpt:

The most disturbing aspect of the meeting was that everyone took for granted that the the decision had been wrongly decided. There was no free trade in ideas about the correctness or incorrectness of the decision; only a discussion about how to overturn the decision.

In their modus operandi the assembled lawyers were ignoring the marketplace of ideas in favor of their own dogmatic beliefs. These defenders of the marketplace of ideas were constitutionally incapable of finding any merit whatever in an opposing viewpoint.

If you refuse to allow an idea (whether a policy or a belief) to be tested against reality, then the question becomes who has the strongest faith. True believers are willing to fight and die to prove that their strength is strongest, thus, most true.

[…]Why were the assembled liberal lawyers so lathered up about the Citizens United decision. Simply, because they believed, dogmatically and unthinkingly, that corporate money was fundamentally corrupt and corrupting. Corporations were sinners; they had acquired their money by less than idealist means; they had no right to try to influence the democratic political process.

Again, dogmatic belief leads to a fighting faith. Why? Perhaps they wanted to maintain their own monopoly control of correct opinion. The greatest enemy of free trade in ideas today is the monopoly on dogmatic belief that is maintained by the educational and media establishments.

Surely, opposing views are aired, through conservative talk radio and through Fox News. But these engines of the free market in ideas are often subject to attack. Those who prefer a more mercantilist, monopoly control over the marketplace in ideas, want to invoke the fairness doctrine to shut down much of conservative talk radio. They often try to discredit Fox News for trafficking in hate speech.

As several of the commenters on the Times site pointed out, none of these great legal minds seem to have the least problem with the influence that labor unions exert on elections through their political advertising. At a time when the political power of labor unions has brought states, cities, and counties to the brink of bankruptcy… lawyers are about to go to war to stop corporations from spending money on political advertising.

This post highlights a change in my own views. I once wanted to be a lawyer, you see. And my judicial philosophy was one of idealism and judicial activism. But after reading Thomas Sowell’s “A Conflict of Visions” three times, I am now a strict constructionist, while respecting rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Legislating from the bench now seems to me to be the wrong point of view. Injustices need to be fixed by legislators elected by the people, not by an appointed oligarchy of out-of-touch judges. So don’t ever say that I don’t change my mind when confronted with the evidence! It happens all the time. Well, sometimes.