Sunday, September 09, 2012

Where Do the Extra Men Go?

I have a question my brain is not large enough  to answer and so perhaps one of you Cappy Cappites can answer this for me.

In polygamous societies you have one guy with multiple wives.  Let's just say 4 wives to keep the math simple.

By default then, this means 75% of the men are WITHOUT wives/girlfriends.

So what do they do?

Originally I asked this about polygamous societies in general, however a friend of mine pointed out that in Mormonism it wasn't so much "just because they could do it," but rather the demands of early western pioneer life were so harsh and dangerous a lot of men didn't make it back.  This then resulted in one man taking on the role of father/husband to multiple children/women.

OK, granted, got that.  The other 75% of the men are dead.  But then I talked to my buddy Khanh and his dad has 8 mistresses on top of his wife.

Now, Vietnam, communist as it may have been, is not the wild west and is already settled.  So it isn't like there's a ton of Vietnamese guys getting knocked off leaving one poor guy to deal with 9 women.  ie-there is a surplus of men.  Throw in the overlap of Asian countries having a tendency to prefer males and selectively abort/abandon/kill females, there's even more of a numerical surplus (not just one dominant alpha male keeping 9 females off the market).

So again, what do the surplus of guys without women do?

Or is it that mistresses still sleep around and aren't really loyal to their sugar daddy?

I'm not trying to be off color, just curious if anybody knows more about this than me.


Chemist said...

That's one of the problems in several of the sh!tholistans. The extra men create trouble. The best way to integrate potential young angry men is to pair them off with women and have them make families they need to support. Tends to keep them too busy to hang around street corners and stir stuff up.

Firehand said...

I've read of the stresses this sets up on polygamous societies, such as many muslim countries: it means lots of young men who don't have wealth or position have no wife, cannot get a wife. Which is strongly suspected of being a contributing factor to the suicide-bomber mentality: "I cannot have a wife on earth, but I will have 72, all virgins, if I die in this way!"

Firehand said...

I've read of the stresses this sets up on polygamous societies, such as many muslim countries: it means lots of young men who don't have wealth or position have no wife, cannot get a wife. Which is strongly suspected of being a contributing factor to the suicide-bomber mentality: "I cannot have a wife on earth, but I will have 72, all virgins, if I die in this way!"

dienw said...

Off the top of my head: most polygamous have been slave or high servant count societies; African chiefs not only sold captives but also their extra people.

Anonymous said...

They either turn gay, turn violent and/or form gangs, or drop out. And of course the government kills off surplus men through wars if need be.

We see all of them happening at this very moment in time.

Anonymous said...

How does polygamy work?

For starters, most polygamist societies arose from very violent and brutal histories.

Take for instance the Bedouin people. Nomadic, constantly fighting each other with a high death rate for males. Since so many males are killed polygamy makes more sense.

At the same time there has to be a safety measure to ensure that men don't get upset about surviving the odds only to end up alone.

For that we have arbitrary status requirements which fluctuate from period to period depending on the harshness of climate, war, politics, etc.

Men who survive the violence with all their limbs and sanity intact but fail to acquire assets are once against excluded from marriage ie. reproduction.

This disposability not only makes men work harder but makes them take greater risks like being cannon fodder for the rich and powerful.

Always though women are the deciders on what is considered suitable status for a man to hold. All of which is relative to a woman's youth, beauty, family background, etc.

This works fine when the struggles of men are existential threats to community and clan. But when those threat come from one's own community or nation the results are as yet to be determined.

Males are disposable this is fact. The Federal Government comes down on the side of women nearly every time. This is good for women in the short run but bad for men, women, and the nation in the long run.

Simply put, women will never be able to support big government the way men have and now that we've hamstrung the nation's best workers, innovators, and job creators, it's going to be slow ride to mediocrity and eventual economic collapse for the U.S.

Already men are finding their own way away from the values and norms that have been foisted upon them by this society. We go our own way and look for things that interest us but we are less likely to spend 100 hours a week building some business in order to achieve some arbitrary standard of success like some carrot before the horse.

We are beginning to no longer believe the things they tell us. We are chafing in our harnesses as it were. We look with suspicion upon women and government and their preferred institutions. It is growing and while most men may not express their feelings of discontentment and betrayal in political slogans or theory those feelings exist nonetheless and are merely waiting for the words to voice them.

I can't tell you how many man I work with who have been screwed over by their ex wives. They tell the tales of false accusation, lost children, Family Courts that demand retribution from him for crimes he never committed and which they have no real evidence.

I consider reaching these men with the political and philosophical ideology to express their frustration one of the most difficult challenges of men today.

Women not only hold a monopoly on reproduction but also on public opinion. And fitting the identity espoused by that opinion is so important to men that they cannot break free of it without feeling even worse than before.

A man married and he becomes a husband and father. That's his identity and he can derive strength from it, but what other identity is available to a man that doesn't prostrate him to everyone else?

But I digress. Where do the men go was the question? For many they go to prison. Those numbers will grow. Others kill themselves. Others live on the streets or live quietly and try to make the best of their situation.

RealitiCzech said...

"This then resulted in one man taking on the role of father/husband to multiple children/women."
Maybe. All my reading of western history indicates that there were always more men than women in the frontier west, regardless of the attrition rate. This is why the really old westerns sometimes featured mail-order brides - they had to have women shipped in.
Alaska is the closest thing we have to a frontier - and look at that sex ratio. Now, is it likely that a family man made sure to watch over orphans and widows in the area? Sure. But I don't believe there was a man-shortage at any time, until civilization took solid hold.
A splinter sect of LDS does this:

Tam said...

I haven't checked the numbers, but it wouldn't shock me if Vietnam has a more serious hole in the "Male, Age >30" demographic than a lot of Americans realize...

Anonymous said...

Looking at current polygamous societies, there are two options. The first option is kick the extra men out. This is what the Fundamentalist LDS (Mormons) who practice polygamy do. The extra men are forced into the outside world and are the outside world's problem now. This "works" because the Fundamentalist LDS are few in number.

The second option is to kill off the excess men in some way. War is one way to do this. Islam allows for polygamy of up to 4 wives. Islam also has a call to Jihad where a harem is promised to men who die fighting for Allah. If you're a man who can't get women in Islam, you go to war. Either you die in which case you supposedly get your harem of women or you survive, presumably victorious, with spoils from war which would include women. In the latter case instead of killing off your excess men you kill off another tribe's men and take their women.

There are also other ways of killing off the excess men such as hard and deadly labor. Build something like the Great Wall, but don't bother with worker safety.

There is also the option of sending men to the frontier where they will die or take indigenous women. That's the same thing.

You will notice that the first option that the FLDS use doesn't really apply to what we are talking about. It only works if a tiny minority is practicing polygamy. Thus we are left with war, deadly labor, or a frontier. None of those are really options in the modern world for solving this problem. Modern (i.e. post Cold War) wars between states don't really help with reducing male populations. Any war that could actually make a dent in the male population would have the danger of going nuclear which makes it off the table for most state actors. Deadly labor isn't an option because no one will tolerate those working conditions. A frontier won't work because even if you opened up the moon or Mars to colonization, for example, there are no local women for men to take. Plus, men aren't going to tolerate the level of danger that existed with previous frontiers to even go there.

What does that leave us with? Civil wars. This is what is likely going to happen. Men without women are generally in the camp of have no reason to support the current order whatever it is. Even if a crazy guy like a man who claims to be the younger brother of Jesus (i.e. the Taiping Rebellion) comes along, men will follow him if he offers a potentially better deal.

That's what the men without women will do. Start civil wars.

anon dude said...

The extra men do three things : die in war, sit around idle, or try to overthrow the current establishment to get their own harems.
This is why polygamous societies tend to not be as stable or as successful as monogamous ones. For a real world example look at how Europeans colonized the Muslims, Africans, and Asians.

Unknown said...

I saw on TV about that group of polygamous Mormons the feds raided.

They took care of the extra men problem by forcing 16-year-old boys our on their own.

That's one solution.

jabrwok said...

Historically the young men went off to steal brides from abroad. The Chinese are, from what I hear, reviving this practice to an extent.

Other fun activities for unmarriagable young men: war, banditry, social unrest, drugs, World of Warcraft, internet pron...

Myrmecodon said...

In most Islamic countries, the answer is usually "Al-Azhar university and bomb-making institute."

Also, men die early from overwork, and their silly wives get the money.

Anonymous said...

Islam is an interesting case. High-status men, as is well known, often have several wives, and even more "temporary wives" and concubines. Lower status men may have one wife. Still lower and there are in essence two solutions: either the men become gay (and despite the ferocious penalties Muslim societies are known for their large numbers of gay men) or, if in an active and expansionist phase, they become warriors. If they are successful, then they (traditionally) would be enriched by plunder (war has been lucrative for most of human existence) and, of course increase in prestige. There is also a long tradition of suicidal assassins (think the Assassins), which has become altered and amplified to give us the modern suicide bomber. Suicide bombers are made to feel special, to feel virtuous, to expect their 72 virgins; and of course they know that their families will receive large sums of money so that they will achieve high status in death.

Anonymous said...

(Cliff Arroyo)

Several options.

- They live in celibacy and masturbate (or find sex and companionship with other men) and die without reproducing.

- They get expelled. Can't be bothered to check the specifics but read of one Mormon offshoot that expells the great majority of young men from the community (for slight or fabricated reasons). This is the only way the men who stay can establish their harems.

- They go elsewhere on their own.

- They're castrated (not done so often anymore and mostly this was done just those who still had contact with women).

- They're used as cannon fodder (many societies with an excess of unwanted young men find reasons to get into wars.

Experiment: Ask any seemingly intelligent young woman "Who gets hurt the most by polygamy?"

Typically the answer will be "Women, of course!" Then point out that all of the evidence is that women have no problem with polygamy (as long as the man has enough status/power).
When you finally point out that the biggest victims are the guys who have no wives (or chances of ever having wives) one of three things happen.

- They change the subject,

- make an elaborate show of indifference to the whole topic(often combined with changing the subject),

- say something like "Oh, I'd never thought of that/them".

I've been through that particular conversation about a dozen times and only about two or three expressed any concern whatsoever for the men whose lives (or chances for reproductive success) have been ruined.

The famous internet personality Whiskey is wrong. Women don't hate, hate, hate low status men, they're just utterly indifferent to their fate.

Another proof there is no God (or if there is, he's either a fucking idior or a filthy sadist):

- The sexual relationship preferences of most men _and_ most women are basically polygynous.

- Human birthrates are roughly equal between males and females

- Any subgroup of humans with many more female than male births (which would make sense with the whole polygynous preference) would quickly be decimated by jealous neighbors.

Go ahead and try to convince me that an omnipotent (hah!) and/or loving (hah!) god set up that situation.

Anonymous said...

Not exactly answering the question but still on topic. I read an article recently about the muslim population in Britain, and apparently unofficial poygamy is quite common there. The reason is - and this even included high status educated women - most women would rather be wife number two or three or four of a high status man, than wife number one of a low status man. The women interviewed for the article readily admitted this. I think most western women would never openly admit to this preference, but this is exactly what the soft harem of alpha men is all about. As islamic culture starts to become more mainstream here, and we have fewer men who are in a position to, or are willing to support a family, we will probably end up with polygamy in our society. - minuteman

Anonymous said...

They become rapists, see Egypt, PK, etc.

Why do you think muslim women are covered up?

Anonymous said...

They go to prostitutes, go gay, or stay home with rosie palm. It's a problem there and worse in china. Also, vietnam is still communist in name. I would describe the gov as a typically but not always disinterested thugocracy.

Tam said...

(Incidentally, for a more extreme version of the demographic hole in VN I mentioned above, check out the origins of Children's Day in Paraguay...)

Anonymous said...

another thing: arab societies are really struggling with the externally forced 'equalizing' of the sexes, most notably the education and mass employment of women, which has made it harder for them to pay dowries, set up apartments and financially support a wife. personally, i contend the inability for young men to get married (read: have sex) was a significant contributor to the Arab Spring uprisings.

Ryan Fuller said...

In the case of historical Mormons, less than a third of women were involved in polygamous marriages. Male attrition wasn't so high as to make polygamy necessary for all of the women to find a husband.

Mark said...

Here in the U.S., we are actually moving away from monogamy and towards polygamy with many younger women becoming part of an alpha male harem. The ninety percent married rate of 1940 has dropped to sixty percent today (among blacks it's all the way down to thirty percent). What we see here is many of the excess guys turning into video game playing, porn watching slackers. Some social conservatives confuse cause and effect and think that marriages aren't happening because they mistakenly think guys are doing this voluntarily. If we continue to become more polygamous like African or Muslim societies, we'll probably become more like them in other ways with more violence, less cooperation and less productiveness leading to a lower standard of living.

Dave said...

In 1861, Mark Twain wrote of polygamy, "With the gushing self-sufficiency of youth I was feverish to plunge in headlong and achieve a great reform here—until I saw the Mormon women. Then I was touched. My heart was wiser than my head. It warmed toward these poor, ungainly and pathetically "homely" creatures, and as I turned to hide the generous moisture in my eyes, I said, "No--the man that marries one of them has done an act of Christian charity which entitles him to the kindly applause of mankind, not their harsh censure--and the man that marries sixty of them has done a deed of open-handed generosity so sublime that the nations should stand uncovered in his presence and worship in silence."

In a nomadic society with no welfare state, what other way is there to support spinsters, widows and their children? Man's labor was essential to everyone's survival, so men were pushed into marriage, to multiple wives if need be, not kicked out of the community.

Like Desmond Hatchett, the FLDS is a by-product of the modern welfare state. Their swarms of children wouldn't survive long without EBT cards.

Anonymous said...

Note, most polygamous societies are mainly monogamous, on;y a few men get more than one. One study I read of traditional Arab societies had over 90% of the women their husbands only wife (so only 5% of men had two or more wives)

Rachel & Robert said...

It fosters the commercial sex trade. Polygamy always works both ways. Advantaged women can share the best men, the disadvantaged have to be shared with the rest.

In ancient times, it took the form of religion. Temple priestesses were prostitutes who would service any man for a small fee. This provided a sexual outlet for single men, and lined the pockets of their owners.

In modern Asia, the sex trade is still big business, and growing with the shortage of women. Of course the women who work in it are trafficked into service, and not just from the country they work in.

van Rooinek said...

what do the surplus of guys without women do?


Ask yourself, what would YOU do in such a situation? What if congressmen and bankers and entertainment moguls had harems while most of us had no chance at all of getting a girl?

Yup. War.

Looking at current polygamous societies, there are two options. The first option is kick the extra men out. This is what the Fundamentalist LDS (Mormons) who practice polygamy do.

Indeed. A smart Army recruiter would set up shop right in the middle of FLDS country. Likely the FLDS leaders would actually encourage this, as an alternative to having the boys end up on the street.