Is there anyone more annoying than Bettina Arndt?

She’s the self-appointed voice of the most marginalised group in society, men.  Yes, ignore the fact that they rule the world in their tailored grey suits raking in millions, we must all feel sorry for them.  You know those poor disadvantaged, misunderstood souls, who need taking care of by Aunty Bett.  Her latest effort, “What men want in bed” based on the startlingly representative sample of 150 men, suggests that pornography searching and extra-marital affairs are completely normal.  So there you have it, Tiger, is just a virile young man seeking to fulfil his natural desires, because he has been spurned by his irrationally unwilling wife. WTF?

What Aunty Bett has taught me, is a profound understanding about why some people are moved to violence, especially against celebrities who get air space for their puerile claptrap dressed up as academic research.

As I sprayed the Sunday Mail with a mouthful of cappuccino, lovingly made by my amateur barrista husband, I might add, I felt the urge to grab the nearest biro and engrave a moustache and glasses into that supercilious grin reaching out to me from the from the black and white columns of poison she refers to as research. Why, oh why, did I bother when I know what total garbage she continues to sprout.

Even the title reeked of disrespect.  ‘When women won’t put out’? What the hell is putting out?  I have an image of a women with her legs splayed, back arched and vagina at the ready.  She is of course in repose on her back ready, willing and waiting for her man??? Because of course physically we can’r ‘put out’ we ‘take in’.  Not particularly “girl power” in its imagery, hey?

According to Bett, if women refuse to have sex, it’s no wonder men look elsewhere, it’s just natural.  Next she’ll be advocating for rapists because they were just responding to their natural desires because the wife wouldn’t put out, hey lets prosecute the wife instead?

She derides the women who are feeling pissed off that their men are reaching for viagra at a time when they thought they could have a rest for the constant sexual requests.  What she seems to be missing here is that by far the majority of women do not orgasm from intercourse and the constant ‘gun in the back, hands up’ requests at bedtime can be tiresome when what is required is some foreplay to get the interest happening on both sides of the sexual divide.

Nowhere does she mention female pleasure, or female desire. Among people I know, it is the women who desire to stray, not their devoted men.  What do you have to say about that Aunty Bett?  They are looking for excitement, difference and danger from a safe distance.  The charge of adrenalin that comes from finding yourself in lust with someone new.  Sometimes they act on this, with dire consequences.  But all of them tell me it’s not about the sex, it’s about the chase, the romance, the playful pursuit of pleasure.  And I didn’t need to interview 150 of them to discover this.

Where is the male responsibility in all of this?  What about injecting romance into well-worn relationships, what about pursuing in subtle ways, resurrecting a sex life infiltrated by children, day-to-day drudgery, financial resentment, menopause, and plain old simple aging?

If her ridiculous opinions weren’t so dangerous I could laugh and turn the pages leaving her absurd stupidity to line the cat tray. Where it belongs.  But it is dangerous. It suggesst that male sexual desire and it’s fulfilment is a dangerous energy that cannot be controlled and therefore it is the women’s responsibility to lie back and think of her countrymen?  Hmmm where have we heard this before?  Perhaps she’ll be telling us to hide our faces and body parts in burqas so that men will not need to be subjected to their natural desires.  If her work gains purchase it could send the gains of the past hurtling, top gear, into the good old dark ages.

Her opinions sanction the pursuit of sex by men from unwilling partners, so I guess rape within marriage is just normal to her too.

Men and women’s desires and the pursuit of monogamous relationships are extremely complex and nuanced.  Her rubbish is the typical middle class crap I’ve come to expect from women who support this ridiculous shift to portraying the man as victim, when his gender, alone, places him at the top of the food chain.  It’s hard for him to accept when faced with unemployment, a dominant wife, a female boss, that by the very nature of being male he matches the norm, the dominant culture, the patriarchy that is portrayed as normal and therefore any disagreement with the status quo is seen as deviance, abnormal.

If you haven’t had sex for two years, get counselling, there is something wrong with your relationship and it has nothing to do with women’s sex drives being lower than men’s.  I am not denying that there will always be tension between the sexes about ‘how often’ is reasonable. I am always astonished at the variety of expectations. I once worked with a colleague who said she liked to have sex at least three or four times a week and if she didn’t get it she got antsy.  She wasn’t the one refusing to ‘put out’ in this instance. Then there was a friend whose husband had not wanted sex for eleven months?  How does this fit with her “normal”.  We are so consumed by what is normal, and what is not, we are failing to discuss it with the people who really count in the relationship. The “us” factor.  We decide what is normal.  We decide what we need.  Sometimes we won’t feel like it, but if we exist in a relationship where respect is the norm, refusal won’t send one of us stumbling to the Internet porn sites or the arms of another.  It will inspire a conversation, a seeking to understand.  And if not get help from a third party, but don’t expect it in the pages of this infantile, simplistic, male oriented, female apologist that is Ms Arndt.

Do you remember that Michael Douglas film “Falling Down”, where he pitifully laments, after a psychotic spree of violence,  “I’m the bad guy?” Yes.  Deal with it.  Until we are truly equal, and have respectful relationships between the sexes as the norm, you have to contain your sexual urges and find out what gives women pleasure and learn to provide it in an atmosphere of equality, tenderness and love. All of which are completely absent from the rubbish being espoused by Ms Arndt.  Boycott the book.  Save your money.

Instead, turn to your significant other and have a conversation about what you both want.  It would be much more productive that anything this drivel could produce.

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About talkychalky

Teacher, ICT user, Thinker!
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4 Responses to Is there anyone more annoying than Bettina Arndt?

  1. Kat says:

    Chalky Talky strikes again! Thanks for putting into words the rage I share with you about Bettina Arndt’s cheap publicity stunts and dangerous messages.

  2. Steve says:

    Unfortunately, I find this post shallow and jingo-istic. Actually, it sounds like the Anti-Arndt. Throw in a few “Win back the Night”s and it starts to take shape.
    Next I expect to endure puerile gibberish about how skinny models cause anorexia.
    Let’s look at a few other disparate gender concepts. Men view women as sex objects.
    True. However. I never see any mention of the male need to view their sex object as a sex object in order to ,yes ladies, perform. We unfortunately don’t have the luxury of merely “arching our backs, and splaying our legs”. What I never hear stated is the fact that the male focus differs from that of the female in almost every aspect of life. Sex objects you may well be, but you are also variously mother objects, trust objects, love objects, companion objects etc. I think perhaps you all find the term “objects” objectionable, unfortunately, It’s how we boys work. Maybe you should try to understand this a little more. You take the concept of men’s use of porn’ and liken it to the idiocy of Tiger Woods behaviour. Seemingly all we must do is engage in a little foreplay and everything is sweet. How shallow. As a man with quite a bit of experience over the last 50 years, I find this laughable. As far as unwilling partners, I married one. Most liasons spring from the desires of only one party initially. Ask around. Man’s gender places him at the top of the food chain? My beloved Grandmother once said to me during a sexism discussion ( and this at the age of 80 ish) ,”Steven, it’s long been known that the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.” The desire to stray, you say? Your female friends no doubt confide in you, but do you really expect an attached male friend to honestly regale you with tales of straying? Knowing that you will remember and judge him by these? I would suggest in the average home, matriarchy is the order of the day. Most couples I know have the woman at the helm, ie finances ( always handy when the partner becomes redundant and the famous female emotional tunnel vision shifts to the offspring.) Like it or not, men are insecure and needy, and are easily ruined. I read an interview some time ago with the now-retired high court judge (still a ms.) who was the main instrument in the implementation of the family law act in the 80’s , when in response to the question of it’s possible anti-male leanings replied “Why, are you on their side?. Hmmm. At least Bettina is pretending to try to understand.

    • talkychalky says:

      You are right I do object to being referred to as n object and being addressed as though I represent all women. i simply object to Bettina Arndt and speaking from a subjugated position I think I can lash out at the more powerful. But insanely this always seems to offend. If the hand that rocked the cradle rocked the world we would have affordable childcare, no we would have free childcare paid for by businesses and childcare workers would be earning amazing salaries because we would actually value mothering. I don’t give a rats if you want sex five times a week like my former female boss or your lucky to get laid once in 11 months like my friend with the reluctant husband. What pisses me off about Bettina is that she completely misses the point about power relationships between men and women. Masculinity is privileged no matter which way you look at it and her work is simplistic and lacking in credibilty. Can you imagine the outrage if we talked about race in the same way we talk about gender? What if we said black people are just wired differently, their brains are different??? Oh wait, we have actually been down that road and it has been dismissed as blatant racism. What if we said asian people are various objects??? Yet we find it acceptable to make broad sweeping generalisations about mens and women’s brains and the various roles they play. I am happy with “shallow and jingoistic”. It’s the perfect response to the queen of shallow and Jingoism, Annty Bett.

  3. Steve says:

    And I, as a non-parent by choice, shall willingly pay to provide that free child care, smiling down from my lofty tower of male privilege as I plan my next move of female subjugation. If I can drag myself away from the porn streaming endlessly across my computer monitor. My Nan had the advantage of 5 generations of personal observation to draw her views from. I’d be interested in your views on single parent in-vitro access, and their right to be supported by our public coffers . Octomum springs to mind.
    PS I did not mean to paint you as representing all women, as I likewise am not my brothers’ spokesperson. But you did echo sentiments which I hear annoyingly frequently and which I take umbrage at.

    Yours playfully , Steve

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