"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Thursday, January 25, 2024

Puritanism And The Marriage Trap - The Buttoning Up Of America

Sex is everywhere in America except in the right places.  The crotch-grabbing, booty-shaking Super Bowl halftime shows might suggest that Americans have finally shaken off centuries of Salem witch-hunting, Victorian prudery, and the sexual ordinariness of the Fifties, come into their own, and returned to the ethos of the Sixties when opportunity was taken for spare change, but no dice, for despite all the titties and pasties, America has returned to its Puritan roots. 

Gay men liberated and proud, have come out of the bathhouses to marry. Drag queens are happy to walk up the aisle, and girls and boys once postponing the inevitable, head for the altar, the suburbs, and pre-schools.

Any man knows that love with many women is the way life should be; and regardless of MeToo they want to be Pashas, kings and courtiers, men with a thousand and one women, a hundred thousand sexual delights, and want a life of happy, guilt-free sexual license.  

Every woman is different, a dazzling, delightful kaleidoscopic of sexual ambitions, desires, and marvelously intricate fantasies; and sex with them is like stealing into the Kabbah or climbing K2 - inimitable, unforgettable; one of many discoveries in a long series of adventures.  Women are wonderful, ceaselessly fascinating, imponderable, insatiable, and every man wants them all. 

So what has changed?  How did men let this censorious state of affairs happen? How, after the epiphany of the Sixties did men allow such a reversion to the two-tone, white-walled propriety of the Fifties, an era which was supposed to be over and done with, dead and buried, forgotten and dismissed? Do any of them really want to come home bored and tired to the same woman, the same rambler, dog, and bedtime stories?

The Age of Woman has come, but not the one men expected.  This one is a determined, suited, defiantly aggressive one, a cross-dresser, man-inside-Chanel skirt overachiever who has given up on Petrarch, the Sonnets, and Emily Dickenson for Milton Friedman, Hayek, and the Chicago school; or who has bitten into abortion, equal pay, and sexual abuse and liked the bitter taste.  Sex? Perhaps and under contract, with codicils, caveats, and proscriptions.

The bare-breasted, love-the-one-you're-with hippie is dead and gone, disappeared, a vapor.  Something so far-fetched that maybe it never happened; maybe this particular sexual rectitude has always been and always will be. 


Of course this all is an American thing.  Putin, Macron, Mitterrand, Sarkozy, even Kim Jung-Un have all the women they want as quickly as bed tea or a closed door; and while American men desperately want what they have, they are in look-but-don't touch territory. No Thousand and One Nights for them. 

Of course it used to be.  Martin Luther King was a sexual madman.  LBJ's Secret Service pimps procured for him night and day.  JFK's paramours were legion and the delight of the press corps who kept his dalliances quiet, prerogatives of power.  Kissinger, that fat, ugly, jowled old man had sexual favors whenever he wanted.  'Power is the greatest aphrodisiac', he said and took advantage of it. Even  Bill Clinton had his share of trailer trash as governor and blow-jobs as President.  

Today, of course, such adventures would be unconscionable, impossible, and revolting.  Even if President Biden could chase women, he would be slapped and censured for his obtuse, typical male behavior.  He, like most men in America have become pussified, pussy-whipped, and complaisant. 

Tolstoy in the character of Konstantin Levin noted that God's greatest irony was to have created Man as a sensitive, intelligent, funny, perceptive, and creative being, then to consign him after only a few decades of life to the cold, hard ground of the steppes.  A greater irony, however, is to have created men with a lifelong sexual desire but with only a few years to satisfy it.  

Women at least have dime-store romance novels to feed their desires and remote ambitions; but men in this age of the feminist iron maiden, sexual rack, surplice of the rat, Spanish spider, and fork of the heretic have nothing but ogling left to them. 

Women of course have their sexual bastinado - a self-enforced peculiarity of Virgin Motherhood, the be-all and end-all of femaleness once the boardroom and corner office have been discounted.  Marriage is right and important for all kinds of devious reasons - social legitimacy, a footnote to paternity, tax breaks - so lovers are to be considered but not taken.  

Somehow in all this female liberation sex got left out.  Women have freed themselves from patriarchy and male abuse, but still have to resort to the vibrator.  There is such a thing as universal morality, they argue, and although they could go out and have a rutting good time to get back at men for millennia of male deceit and oppression, they have bought into the middle class ethos.  

So America, despite the heady promise of the Sixties, is back to Salem 1692.  Not only is it a sexless place but a censorious, humorless, castigating place.  It is not enough to be abstemious and celibate; but we have to suffer for our impertinent desires. 

There are ways for the independent man to satisfy his sexual needs.  Washington has always had its high-class, secretive, air-tight security call girl services; and rube Congressman from the Midwest are always the first to jump in, damn the torpedoes, and rut until they're caught; but in the light of day they have to appear with their wives and act the part. 

There's hope that this progressive sanctimony will soon be put to sleep after the election of Donald Trump, a man of machismo for whom marriage only plays well if you have a trophy wife.  Progressives will fret and worry about the erosion of immorality, lack of integrity, and dishonesty that Donald Trump always brings with him; but the rest of the nation will breathe a big, deep sigh of relief at the end of sanctimony, righteousness, and moral authority. 

Sex without marriage, outside it, before it, and after it again; and it will be a rootin', tootin' pleasure. 

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