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Backlash against the “Nice Guy” in light of “Virgin Rampage”

June 6, 2014

Now with a nerdy male virgin going on a rampage, and having complained of being a “nice guy” who didn’t get a chance with women, it seems the blogosphere is going after self-proclaimed “nice guys” or nerds.

You’re Probably Not Really a Nice Guy

The whole “nice guy” thing comes from less “tough” guys seeing the girls favor more “confident” (as he puts it) guys.
But then the women end up not happy with these guys, as with this “confidence” often comes the typical womanizing, and even abuse. Yet they got a chance, and keep getting chances, so the more passive guys then seem “nice” in comparison in the long run. (Only the immediate impression is being looked at, not the big picture).

It seems to be almost a “cultural” thing. Of course, not everyone is like that. It often becomes part of an in practice “package” deal, as this is what society expects of men. You play a game, score, and don’t get tied down, and the women follow their role (tying the man down, often with pregnancy, being “clingy”, etc), and the man doesn’t want that, etc.

“Fun, confident, honest kind guy with a sense of humor”, and “values generosity and compassion”, “doesn’t feel entitled”. That’s a nice ideal, but much harder to find all in one person in practice, because people may put that out there as a front, but what he says about women goes both ways.
Men are real people too (every one of them consisting of good and bad, and all having some deep “issue” or another), not some “hunk” or commodity you can just have custom made to order like that.

So what happens, is that women look for these ideals, but then the outright “users” who play the best game end up scoring the most. (And they DO feel “entitled”. Ever hear them grumble to their friends when the girl doesn’t give them sex? The women really DO sound like “a piece of meat” then, often expressed in rather vulgar terms of one single body part, so it’s not like it’s just the less assertive guys who are guilty of that.
The “entitlement” sense is just from the natural male sex drive on steroids in this sexually saturated culture. But women feel entitled in their own ways too, That’s just human nature).
Of all the guys you hear (in your own life or on TV, etc) who have gotten a lot of women, how many of them are really all those things in the end?

THAT’s what the less confident [professing] “nice guys” are complaining about.

So just giving that one group all this tough talk (like they’re just “insecure bitching drama queens” as he puts it, and not the true “nice guy” the girls want, as if all the guys who are scoring a lot really are THAT perfect) is just one sided. It’s putting the whole problem on one side, now seen as wrongly putting the blame on the other side. But neither extreme is ever right.

And as for the “friend zone” thing, it’s hard to know when to be too assertive and “go for the gusto” (don’t women complain about that?), or whether to start out as friends, and then work from there. So apparently, girls will end up going for the more assertive guy, but once again, not like everything that comes with that package.

He looks like the type of guy, at least in my environment, girls all liked or at least respected, so this seems like a sort of defensive “backlash” thing, even using the same language as the race/economic issues (“entitlement”, etc), and it’s just a total lack of compassion for those not good at playing the game.

In a similar vein,

Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Misogyny, Entitlement, and Nerds

He makes a lot of good points, but Eliot Rodger obviously had a much more serious problem than simply a need to “grow up”. To just apply a simple blanket statement like that oversimplifies the problem and generalizes it to all “nerdy guys”, like they all have the same problem.

This whole thing about “entitlement” is also overgeneralized, and there is some truth in it, but then everyone feels entitled to something. As I said above, that’s human nature.

Again, it sounds just like politics (especially economics and race), where people feeling defensive (including those who feel they rose up from the ranks they’re now criticizing) go after the [still] downcast with a lot of “tough talk”, and that they simply feel “entitled”, and needing to “grow up”, “pull their bootstraps”, “stop whining/self-pitying”, etc. Ironically, in this case, the answer still ends up as having to “earn” it some way, which implies just the same “entitlement” with different criteria.

A lot of people are hurting (in social and other ways in addition to economics or other forms of discrimination), and there often seems to be little compassion, so they self-pity. That’s not the problem; one thing needed is more understanding, not a lot of “when I was a self-pitying a-hole [like you], I … … now you just need to grow up” talk.
For Rodgers, his problems obviously ran much deeper.

I like the way it was reportedly put on a Facebook post (now taken down, it seems):

Just a few words on the speculations that I have heard in the media about Elliot Rodger:

Well-intentioned commentators have have referenced and if may be blunt- projected, cultural and political analysis of what this tortured young soul was all about. He was “Self-Entitled”, a “Whiner” , obviously “Misogynist”, somewhat “Racist”, an “Aspie”…on and on…… It is the hatred of women ….It is his access to guns… It is Wealthy Privileged Kids…. It is Video Games…. He was too “Horny”…. He was too “Prudish”

No. Elliot Rodger was mentally ill. Profoundly so. That is, BY FAR, the takeaway that the world should have about this tragic man.

Sure he expressed that mental illness with extreme misogyny. But don’t try to look into what made Elliot Rodger do what he did in the history of sexism. Find it in the history of mental illness. Of course his “views” on women were depraved and repulsive in the extreme. But they were not “views”…. they were ravings. Ever since that first detailed conversation that I had with him that night on Abbot Kinney, I knew that there was simply NO point in trying to act as his teacher or mentor. What he needed was a DOCTOR.

And yes…. he creeped me out.

A good video on this:

  1. Similar instance of “tough talk”, though in an almost opposite context. This time, women carry the “Victim” archetype (instead of “unlucky” guys):

    A Gentleman’s Guide to Rape Culture

    The stuff he’s saying is for the most part true, but what struck me is where he mentions approaching a female writer he respected, asking her to write an article with him, where she would explain rape culture to him and to male readers and then she stopped returning his emails. He was annoyed and then mad.

    He eventually comes to a realization:

    If rape culture is so important to me I needed to find out for my self what it is. No woman owes me her time just because I want to know about something she inherently understands. No woman should feel she has to explain rape culture to me just because I want to know what it is. No woman owes me shit. I saw how my desire for a woman to satisfy me ran deep. Even my curiosity, a trait that always made me proud, was marred with the same sort of male-centric presumption that fuels rape culture. I expected to be satisfied. That attitude is the problem.

    So a person expects him to understand something he admits not understanding, and she [seems to me] rudely cuts off contact, he takes the blame, and “owns” thinking she “owed” him something, and “desiring a woman to satisfy me”. I didn’t respond, because maybe it’s true in his case. Only he knows what’s inside him.
    He’s using the “tough talk” on himself; however, this point is in inference for all other men; this is supposed to be an example of how ALL men “contribute to this ‘rape culture'”.

    [Edit: functional analysis moved: ]

    I again can understand what he’s saying, which is basically about “male dominance”, but I just don’t agree with going about it this way.
    With all this talk about people “using” others for satisfaction, they forget that we all do that, not just men. (A commenter even asked how about how women contribute to rape culture).
    The flipside is women using men for “security” (which then ties into the OP’s article, because “tough guys” are seen as the best potential protectors and providers, so the “nerdy” guys get left out, while the guys who score then end up being the ones more likely to do rape, violence and infidelity).

    So trying to “stick it” to just one group as if they were all bad or the cause of all problems is just not the answer.

    If you changed the subject to the largely parallel issue of race, and justified a black person getting upset because a white writer wanted to coauthor an article asking him to explain racism to him, I would shake my head and figure this is precisely why the conservative backlash (that says we’re just “whining”, and have a hidden ulterior motive for it) has gone on so apparently validated or unchallenged with facts for so long.

    We all the more need to explain it, and explain it clearly and as much as needed (those holding on to racist sentiment have certainly done this, and not expected people to “just get it”, or when they do use “code”, it still clearly gets the message across). And I would be happy that at least the other person wants to try to understand. Its better than the outright denial and defensive blame-reversal of the others.
    But the type of person who would get upset like that is likely the same one who suspects whites being “nice” like that as being “patronizing”, trying to placate their guilt, etc. and thus still operating off of a kind of superiority. So you end up with the same judgment as males: Every white person is “contributing to the culture of racism”.

    Again, there is a grain of truth, and I can understand what they’re saying; but I just find such ways of saying it to be inflammatory, and only evoking defensiveness in the other side, rather than making them understand it. But then, they’re precisely at fault for not “getting it” on their own. To me, it’s just like the Calvinist insistence that God only shows the truth about Himself to some people, but still “holds responsible” everyone else for not “knowing” the truth. Man projects onto God the way he thinks.
    I think a lot more grace is needed in these issues.

    • Here’s another one where an author (this time, it is on race, and references to gender, the reverse of my entry above)

      View at

      It is not incumbent on a woman who has felt oppressed by men to teach me how to be a better man. That places the burden of my actions on her. She is to blame for my failure: “I’m still a bad man, you obviously didn’t do a good job of teaching.” It also puts her in the position of reliving experiences and trauma not for her own catharsis, but for my benefit.
      I can’t ask a woman to do this and have any illusions that I am one of the good guys.

      The thing that bothers me about not responding to the racial stuff in the links he provides, is that ignoring it (as liberals have often done in this and many areas), as we can see there only proves to them they are right and their views unrefuted, and thus allows the thinking to fester, and then we wake up one day in a world that seems to have gone backwards in progress; where police violence is justified by that same lines of reasoning he used, and then seems to pick up, and “alt-right” type thinking is running rampant, Confederate rallies, Q-Anon conspiracies, climate change denial, and the support of Trump no matter what he does. I don’t think of it in terms of “owing your time”. It’s not about trying to “teach” them something they should have been learning on their own. It’s about the overall NARRATIVE that has been pervading the atmosphere. If it’s the “culture” that is so “poisonous”, and we can’t even argue otherwise, then they’re going to feel justified in trying to exterminate it, it will appear to make sense to anyone else who hears their narrative, and that’s what’s been happening!

      So that is a case when “tough talk” is needed (by the “victims” to the offenders), but withheld, and instead, tough talk is given to the more well-meaning who are at least trying to do right!

  2. All women want a 'good' guy, with a little 'hood' in him
    This is pretty much the “ideal” for many, but when it comes to the actual day to day relationship (getting along together outside of the well dressed [and “fun, confident, honest kind guy with a sense of humor”, etc.] “front” and the good times), that “hood” is what becomes most prominent.

  3. Interesting take on the issue:

  4. Pretty interesting extension. You can factor it up as:

    alpha: positive command, positive attitude
    beta: negative command, positive attitude
    sigma: positive command, negative attitude
    gamma: negative command, negative attitude
    (omega: more extreme, aggressive form of gamma. Eliot Rodger, the “virgin rampager” the OP started on, was obviously in this camp, along with this latest school shooter still in the news and really flaring up the gun control issue now).

    As far as type, it seems SJ’s will make for good betas (“Guardians” of the natural order, and they know they should do better to gain the resources, and will often be hard on both themselves and the gammas who complain to them, telling them “that’s just the way it is” even though it might be unfair to them as well. They’re doing as “life” dictates in lieu of the “consequences”; hence low “command” or not being in actual “control” of the situation, —even though they tell themselves and others that ‘playing by the rules’ to succeed is having control; i.e. the “internal locus”).

    E’s (and especially the “directive” ones; EST/ENJ, the “In Charge” or “Choleric” types) will more likely be alphas, unless really unhealthy. Trump is the perennial alpha of the day (and even though we may think he’s unhealthy, it still hasn’t caught up to him; at least not yet). Females are these types as well, and someone like Oprah is probably the perennial alpha.

    INP’s might make the typical gammas, as their Ne questions the “system”, and their Ji walks to the beat of its own drummer.

    The directive introverts (especially types like INTJ and ISTP, from what I’ve seen) might be typical sigmas. (And many INTP’s as well).
    “Sigma” is the perfect category for ol’ Don and Walt. They’re too cynical and reclusive to fit “alpha”, but their lifestyle of wine, women and song might seem alpha. But like gammas and omegas, they are still disillusioned by the systems of the world (whether social, sexual, institutional, etc; even though they have basically succeeded in it), and grumble about it. You would expect the “loser” tome of “Deacon Blues” and “What A Shame About Me” from gammas, but in the latter; the girl is actually trying to get him to her hotel! They clearly have the appeal and command of alphas, but respond to life totally different.

    KRS may seem like an “alpha” because of his aggression and confidence, but he does have a very critical and especially reactive streak, that places him more in the “sigma” category. (These things carry a”vibe”, and he just doesn’t give off that same vibe as Trump, or even an even more dysfunctional version such as Joe Jackson. It took some thought to figure this out). He’s just a much more aggressive form of sigma, and has mastered the questioning or bucking of the system sigmas still aim for.

    “alpha” is obviously the ideal or standard presumed in the video, above in the OP. The dreadlocked guy in the video is presenting as an alpha, with the “confidence” and fervency of the tough-talking points he’s making; and he could be, but he could also be a great example of one of the “worker-bee” betas, simply upholding the “system” in which alpha is the ideal, whether he’s really succeeding in it or not. We obviously don’t know enough about him to be able to judge one way or another. But people can talk a good game, and be totally opposite inside, often sometimes using the tough “alpha” persona to cover up a shadow of a lower rank. My father I am now recognizing as what I call a “wannabe-alpha”, [actual] beta type.
    As I said, using his “Guardian” Si (internal concrete focus) to realize alpha is the ideal for a man, and trying to act like one in his house and the street, as well as instill this in his sons; but clearly (to those of us who knew him), was no alpha. He may have had some “gamma” qualities, especially in his youth, but the attitude is what makes the difference. He clearly “surrendered” to this “way of life”, and tried to live it, even though he did not master it, like his ESTP cousin (the one I mentioned in the ESTP and black community article), who was the true “alpha” of the family.

    In learning about “inner objects” (especially in conjunction with Beebe’s theory, where the inferior function “anima” is our main complex dealing with these objects), I’m seeing how my father has become a strong object, and it’s why I take offense to tough-talking figures like the guy in the video, as well as much of conservative rhetoric and a lot of other stuff.
    This is because it’s true that nature favors the “alpha” as that’s the one poised to be able to protect women and society in general. The problem is in the way they let it go to their heads, and allow for nothing beyond their or our control; advocating a near 100% “internal locus of control”, where being an “alpha” or less is all about “choice”, and these complaining gammas and omegas simply chose wrong, and need to be scolded for it, while the alpha (and even the humble aspirational beta) are just “telling the truth”.

    But the key to true “humility” is to still be aware of the Shadow, which we project onto others we see as containing weakness we suppress in ourselves. We all are limited, and acting on our impulses.

    • Confessions of a Proud Beta Male

      Thing is, betas can be just as obnoxious as alphas, as many of them are “wannabe” alphas, idealizing their behavior, but just not having the command, remember. What he’s stating would include gammas as well. His whole mission of challenging the alpha paradigm of Trump and his followers is more gamma.


    Regarding the Greek letters and their scientific origin; Yes, “we’re humans, not pack animals”, but in PRACTICE, we do often revert to behaving like animals in ways; expecially yielding to instinct, and so women often still do gravitate to men who seemed better poised to “protect” (even if they turn out to be “jerks” the women need protecting from!) That’s what the incels are complaining about.

    (Then in the comments discuss how the alpha-beta system has been expanded, and the so-called “incels” are actually not even betas, but rather “gammas” or “omegas”. The article cites a paper claiming “even the scientists who coined the term ‘alpha’ to describe wolves are now rejecting the alpha-beta dichotomy as inaccurate and useless.”)

    Since the concept has been changed and no longer pretends to follow the original scientific categorization, then it can be a good way to categorize these different attitudes towards life and the problems that arise from them (including not understanding and talking past each other). It also now includes women, so that they can be considered “alphas” as well, so it is no longer making them inferior to men.

    (Had never heard of “Chad” before, I don’t think, as as others pointed out, “thot” is a “hood” slang, not originally from white incels.

    While we’re on this subject; after reading this article:
    I’ve decided that the whole concept of “covert narcissism” is probably nonsense. I first heard of it years ago, and it figured that those who seem so opposite of what we think of as a “narcissist”; the “overt” one, get tagged with it too. What this is saying, is that the same underlying beliefs are in their “shadow”.
    Basically, the typical “overt narcissist” would fit an unhealthy alpha and sigma, while the “covert narcissists” would be, of course, gammas and omegas (note, in the first article, the repeated use of the word “entitled”).

    But the term “narcissist” came from an Aesop’s fable about a guy named Narcissus who couldn’t stop looking at his own reflection. While you could say the “covert” ones are doing this in a more subtle, internal fashion; still, the whole grain of the concept is really overt. In the checklist they give, most of the entries involve self-consciousness (being concerned about what others think, etc.) but many of these can be from hurtful situations, and even trauma. Let’s not forget autism! They’re largely defensive behaviors, and while you can claim the “self-involvement” still fits the term, Narcissus was clearly not defensive. So it’s a stretch to try to apply the term that way. (Where the “alpha” concept has expanded, “narcissism” was from the beginning more grounded to a specific character, and so doesn’t stretch as well).

    I wonder if this might just be another instance of an alpha “self-help”/coaching culture trying to deflect criticism from their own favored behavioral mindset; as they are always sharply criticizing those who complain of being down on luck, whether under the “gamma” label, or “sensitive”. Hence, as I said, alphas and betas scolding gammas. So its like “you think you’re better than us, but you really aren’t”. Then, to continue and reverse it, they’re really worse, again, because alphas have the right attitude (and “get up and do something for themselves”, and “produce value for others”, etc), while gammas don’t. With the article concluding on a quote from the psychologist who produced the list with the typical “tough talk” approach: [if you scored 97 or above] “…you might want to own yourself as a card-carrying covert narcissist, instead of constantly telling people to stop criticizing you because your sensitive, introverted soul can’t handle it”; that’s what makes it look like that to me. His original article even says “It seems if you have to be a narcissist, it’s better to be an overt narcissist than a covert narcissist!
    So while “bringing [the professing ‘sensitive soul’] down a notch” (and whatever pains made that way will be scoffed at as “NO EXCUSE”), the overt narcissist’s behavior, in practice often ends up tolerated and even rewarded because of this (i.e. his comparative “efforts” and “achievements”; witness our last president, even if there were many who couldn’t stand him), and yet again, complaining about the system is attempted to be quelled.

    • To my comment in the first article above, the author responds that “The claim that women instinctively seek men who protect them is nothing but mere pseudoscientific conjecture.”, and instead, “in many cases, women prefer men who are less capable of protecting them.” and otherwise, “it’s impossible to determine how much of that desire is biological rather than learned from their culture.”

      That’s new to me. Growing up, all I heard was you have to be tough and exude confidence to have a better chance, and never heard of women preferring less capable, and it seemed to tie right into nature and the “survival of the fittest”. So then, i guess my father and all those others were wrong to appeal to nature, as it’s just cultural? (That was actually the assumption I had, and was my internal defense when hearing that counsel years ago. But I had no validation on that, and looking back, it seemed like wishful thinking. Things have sure changed, in today’s “me too” culture where these things are finally being challenged!)

      And now, seeming to possibly go along with this, is this:
      Wolf packs don’t actually have alpha males and alpha females, the idea is based on a misunderstanding

      It argues what scientists thought were male and female “alpha” pack leaders were simply the parents of an immediate family of pups [BTW; I always though wolves had cubs like the other large carnivores. In fact, in “Cub Scouts”, we were “wolf” cubs!].

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. “Laws of the Universe”, “Objectivism”, and tough talk (or “Why I’m Critical of Secular Self-help”) | "ERIPEDIA"
  2. Greek letter personality types – erictb "lite"

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