Yale Puts the Kibosh On Alpha Professors

HT: Will Wilkinson

Will aptly calls it “a subsidy to male Yale undergrads.”

Key quote from the article:

An imbalance of power forms the rationale for treating Yale College students differently from their older counterparts. Undergrads, the revised handbook says, “are particularly vulnerable to the unequal institutional power inherent in the teacher-student relationship and the potential for coercion, because of their age and relative lack of maturity.”

If Yale wanted to ban relationships between any type of professor and any type of student, I’d be OK with it. But this particular policy is somewhat ageist and condescending. Yale isn’t trying to avoid conflicts of interest so much as trying to tell consenting adults what sexual choices they can and can’t make.

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He’s Got The Look

Why is Tom Brady considered more alpha than Peyton Manning? Is is abstract notions of game, or is it more concrete?

Remember this next time somebody tells you that men’s looks don’t matter.

By the way, check out photos of Brady from the 2000 NFL Combine.

Some alphas are not born but rather must be made.

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Reading the Alpha Tea Leaves

Obsidian presented choices of various male celebrities to his female readers yesterday. Just about every man listed is more alpha than 95% of the male population, so it largely comes down to personal preferences. It’s like the equivalent of asking a straight man: “Megan Fox or Scarlett Johannson?”  The answer isn’t clearly objective and you’ll get different answers from different guys. With the exception of Bruce Lee vs. Steven Segal, all the match-ups were a black man and a white man. I’d like to go over the match-ups one by one:

Denzel Washington, or Tom Hanks?

Tom Hanks is basically the Jimmy Stewart of his generation, a Mr. Nice Guy who could be considered the Hollywood version of a beta provider. By absolute standards, both Hanks and Stewart in their primes would be considered alphas because of their status, but next to a peer like Cary Grant or George Clooney, might be seen by the audience as somewhat beta. Denzel has always had a stronger sexual charisma but ironically hasn’t been cast in romantic roles as often as Hanks has. (Race probably had something to do with this. As an example, the interracial relationship in The Pelican Brief removed when the novel was adapted for the screen) Advantage: Denzel

Clive Owen, or Will Smith?

This is an interesting match-up. Owen would probably be seen as “harder” than Smith despite Smith having grown up in West Philly. Smith was able to appeal to white audiences by being “black but not too black.” His rap songs were pretty lighthearted and stuff like “Parents Just Don’t Understand” is something that white teenagers can identify with. “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” was critical to integrating him even further to the white mainstream. This probably goes down to personal preference. If you like slightly foreign bad boys, you’ll go with Owen. If you like funny, more laid back guys, you’ll go with Smith. No clear advantage.

Seth Rogen, or Anthony Anderson?

Battle of the pudgy comedians. I don’t think this is really a fair fight. Rogan had the leading role in the major-hit “Knocked Up” and his status is much higher than Anderson. (He’s also a good deal slimmer) Many of the women commenting didn’t even know who Anderson is. Many of his roles have been bafoonish and he’s still in a “that guy” stage in his career. Strong advantage Rogan.

Michael Vick, or Ben Rothlisberger?

Both are scumbags and not terribly bright off the field but still alpha because of their status. Being a pretty big NFL fan, I haven’t noticed either having the sort of charm that would make them even more alpha. (Someone show me evidence if I’m wrong). Roethlisberger’s relative status is higher at moment because he will likely still be the Steelers’ starter after his suspension while Vick will be riding the bench with the Eagles (unless Kolb sucks). Vick also had a huge amount of his potential earnings by going to prison and having been let go by the Falcons. Say what you want about taking a 20-year old to a bar bathroom, it’s not beta. Slight advantage Roethlisberger.

Bill Clinton, or Barack Obama?

Clinton has had several health scares and is looking increasingly frail and very much red in the face. At his peak, Clinton was the most charismatic politician of his generation, but he’s 63 while Obama is a healthy 49. Obama is slightly nerdier than Clinton, but he’s obviously very much charismatic in his own right. Additionally, Obama is currently President and Clinton isn’t. “Power is the ultimate aphrodisiac” as Henry Kissinger said (whose dating record shows that he was very alpha). Clear advantage Obama.

Daniel Craig, or Idris Elba?

Coin flip, both are hard alphas. Comes down to personal preference as to whether you like British guys or black guys.

Dirk Nowinski, or LeBron James?

I’d imagine the German accent would be non-starter for most American women. LeBron is funny, charismatic and the best player in the NBA. He’s an alpha’s alpha.

Jamie Foxx, or Matt Damon?

Damon would have the edge among white women, Foxx with black women. Damon’s status is slightly higher and Foxx has yet to be a People’s Sexiest Man Alive. Damon doing “I’m Fucking Matt Damon” video with Sarah Silverman while married to a beautiful Argentinian is a pretty fucking alpha move.

Eminem, or Black Thought?

Eminem’s status is higher and he’s an asshole. He’d clean up with white proles and even a large amount of black women. Black Thought would do better among hipster, intellectual types. In terms of raw numbers, Em would be more alpha.

Lenny Kravitz, or John Mayer?

I’d put both in the super-alpha category. A lot of women would consider Mayer a jerk, but would still sleep with him if given the chance. Mayer would win the under-35s and Kravitz would win the over-35s. Since under-35s are generally more desirable, I’ve give a slight edge to Mayer.

Bruce Lee, or Steven Seagal?

Come on, Seagal’s a fucking joke and Bruce Lee was a legend. This isn’t worth writing further about.

Jason Statham, or Wesley Snipes?

Another British guy vs. Black guy match-up. Snipes is 47 and his status is waning. I feel like Statham would have more sway among under-35s.

Take a moment to think of your idea of the hottest NFL stars past and present. Let’s say you could come up with a list of your Top Ten. Question-do either Mannings (Peyton and Eli) appear on it? Please give say, three names from your list.

A list of the 10 hottest NFL stars is different than the question of whether the Mannings are alpha or not. Anyone playing in the NFL is more alpha than 95% of the male population by nature of his status. Tom Brady being a super-alpha doesn’t make Peyton Manning a beta.

Now, real quick, do the following names appear on your list of Alpha Males:

Steve Jobs

Warren Buffett

Bill Gates?

Would this name be on this list:

Sean Connery?

I would consider Jobs to be a fairly alpha figure. He’s seen as unorthodox, ahead-of-the-curve business leader and women love Apple’s products. He’s a businessman, but he’s a creative businessman, which makes him more appealing. He’s had health issues, but he seems to have bounced back and is only 55. Buffet is a classic beta provider and Gates is a straight-up beta. Connery is one of the top ten alphas of the 20th Century, but he’s almost 80 now.

Thoughts?

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My Kind of Democrat

Robert Wright and Mickey Kaus had a subtly hilarious diavlog about Mickey’s gadfly Senate campaign against uber-liberal Barbara Boxer in the Democratic primary. Kaus’s two big issues are opposing the public sector unions that are killing California and stopping illegal immigration. I like both of those stands but I was disappointed that Kaus didn’t come out in favor of legalizing marijuana and talked about how the reason for his position was that he wanted to win over black votes. Maybe he being tongue-in-cheek in response to Wright’s mock seriousness. It’s about 20 minutes too long, but if you have some free time you should watch it for a laugh.

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Sports and Politics

Hotline came out with a pretty interesting survey about the politics of fans of various sports. Not surprisingly, fans of the PGA and college football where the most Republican, but pretty much every major sports leaned Republican (the NBA was an exception). Here are some things I took away from it:

I was somewhat surprised that MLS fans have such a low voter turnout, but I guess their fanbase is largely Hispanic. Soccer in America is a game that everybody under 30 played as a kid, but nobody gives a damn about as an adult.

WWE fans are a lot more pro-Democrat than I would have expected, that doesn’t bode well for Linda McMahon.

Why are Monster Truck fans more Democratic than Motocross fans? I’m guessing Motocross fans are more well-to-do.

Why are minor league baseball fans to the left of the majors? I would think that since the minors are more rural/exurban, the fans would be more Republican.

Tennis fans don’t have as high of a turn-out than I would expect considering that it’s thought of as a wealthier sport.

The biggest NHL fan I knew was my very left-wing friend in college, so it’s a little ironic to me that NHL fans are almost as Republican as bull-riding fans.

Anyone else have thoughts?

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Prostitution vs. Homosexuality

Will Wilkinson posted some trendlines on approval of homosexual in major industrialized countries as compared to approval of prostitution. As a liberal-tarian, Wilkinson seeks to avoid all questions of personal judgment and that such actions should not just be legally tolerated but also condoned by society. (As a primer, you can read this dialogue from Reason from last October)   Here are my additional reasons:

Numbers: No matter whose numbers you choose to believe, there are certainly more homosexuals than prostitutes. We don’t encounter known prostitutes on a day-to-day basis whereas we have gay relatives, classmates and co-workers.

Lifestyle: Homosexuals are productive members of society, while prostitutes use hard drugs at a much higher rate than the general population and are more likely to engage in other self destructive behaviors. Even the high-priced call girls like Ashlee Dupre typically have emotional problems.

Promiscuity/The value of sex: Related to Wilkinson’s “cash nexus.” Gay people are capable of having long-term monogamous relationships. They value their partners attributes and character while prostitutes mainly value money. They have a harder time valuing sex in a meaningful sense.

Kerry Howley has suggested that prostitution would be seen as more legitimate if it were legalized, but it’s not like going into stripping or pornography are seen as admirable career choices even though both are legal. If you were to someday have a child, would you rather have that child grow up to be gay or grow up to be a prostitute? Let’s say that they would making the same amount of money, in good physical health and not on any drugs. Go solely on your base instinct and you will have your answer to why society as a whole is less comfortable with prostitution.

UPDATE: My apologies to Will for suggesting earlier that he blocked me from his site.

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Masculinity and Massa

Tracy Quan has an interesting piece about Eric Massa and sexual harassment. I think that she understated the extent of Massa’s wrongdoing. He was a real scumbag and I’m glad he’s out of Congress. (Obamacare still would have passed even with his nay vote) But I did like this quote:

One of the more appealing American archetypes—despite modern feminism—is the man who will physically protect us. It’s impossible for me to imagine this of a man who files an official complaint when his masculinity is challenged by an embarrassing jerk. As financial parity becomes a reality in our culture, as women sometimes even out-earn men, it’s more crucial than ever for masculinity to retain its integrity. We need to feel something primal and irrational—it’s called admiration—in order to respect the men around us. Too many women find themselves shacked up, legally partnered or otherwise connected with men they don’t admire.

“For a woman qua woman, the essence of femininity is hero-worship—the desire to look up to man.”

HT: Hit & Run

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