This morning I was listening to Dennis Prager and he was moaning and mocking respectfully as he always does. Then he said something that was interesting in trying to understand how the Left gets their drawers in a bunch, especially those who find it easy to hate the middle of America aka flyover country. He said that politics is their religion - that they have no higher comfort. He then went to say how comforting it is to know that he has a higher calling and can let politics go when it gets too crazy and mentioned that he'll be celebrating high holy days which are upcoming shortly in the Jewish calendar.
He's wrong. The opposition does have a higher calling. It's sex.
Aldous Huxley said that an intellectual is someone who has found something more interesting than sex. What then is a person who finds sex to be the most interesting thing of all? The context I'm thinking of is one that suggests that if we all agree that everything we do in politics is to secure our pursuit of happiness, what exactly is the end game? What provides happiness? If governments are instituted among men to secure such things, what things are we securing.
This is something that Prager does talk about a good deal and I remember agreeing with him as he spoke about it some time this past spring.
I haven't seen the Vagina Monologues, but I can already tell that I don't like Eve Ensler. I just caught her video on the TED website and cringed at her example-making and her illogical inversion of the notion of security, especially her terms of embracing suffering. Then again I know she's not speaking to me but at me abstractly in the third person 'omnicient' in that passive-aggressive way liberals often express their anger. The girl who wears an 'I love my vagina' T-Shirt in high school was the heroine of the day.
Without going into the details of what has gone off the rails with feminism, and what we know is wrong with multiculturalism and identity politics, it is curious to see the dovetails between those ideological movements and the pursuit of sexual happiness. I asked the question without much response in The Sybaritic Side of The Culture. Is the end of human invention and civilization result in all of us basically 'reverting' to our true natures of enjoyment of sex, drugs and rock and roll? Or perhaps a better way to put it is this? Is there something more Godlike in sacrifice?
Perhaps an unspoken yet well understood trope of our culture wars - our divisions of Left and Right, between cosmopolitan and drylongso is over the same old matter of the Puritan work ethic all over again. After all, you can't get conservatives to swoon more obsequiously than when they describe some soldier's noble sacrifice. And there's nothing liberals love to do more than mock that as an utterly meaningless waste of a life.
I'm willing to put God as a higher purpose, or more accurately to state that we find our higher purpose and therefore the most true essence of our humanity in our search for God. And while it is abundantly clear that we American Christians have a gigantic black hole where the ritualization of sacred sensuality should be, it's not so clear that non-believers have a lock on transcendent sex. That is precisely the difficulty I have with those who make no distinction between sexual restraint and sexual repression - which is where I see most feminists and their supporters coming from.
I am approaching the age at which sensuality is academic, and every year that goes by finds me less and less anxious about it. I thoroughly enjoy the privilege of married life which obviates the tremendous pressure of single life. It would take some doing for me to get back in the mindset of embedding so much meaning into sex, meaning that would come close to justifying how much of it permeates the motivations of so much of our society. I've been laughing at single people's goofball relationships almost as much as skateboard blooper videos, and now I'm to the point at which I want to derisivley smack people for their idiocy. And I warm to them in the realization that they're looking for romance to provide a purpose. I am brought to pity. Remember Cobb's Rule: There's Marriage and there's everything else; everything else doesn't count. There's a statistical industry for you social scientists... How much despair in America is not created by Bush and the Republicans, but by the fact that so many people can't find happiness? A great irony if ever there was one - you'd think that those who seek to find redemption in their personal and sexual relationships would be, like stoners with the best herb, too happy to care about the intrigues of PNACians. Alas, there is not much purpose in romance, and so they must put passion into politics.
I understand and respect anyone who fights against the repression of women. There are not enough warriors in that battle. No society that disrespects women can long survive, much less sustain liberty. But I fear that many who mock conservatives on sexual matters equate abstinance and restraint with stupidity and repression, and in their verve to liberate the naughty bits of people around the world, have mistaken profligacy with liberation. What did I hear the other night? Yesterdays sluts are today's 'empowered women' and today's sluts are all celebrities. If you could fuck your way to freedom, nobody would need armies.