The Old In-And-Out

…and I don’t mean the California-based greaseburger chain, either.  Apparently, we Westerners aren’t doing enough bonking, and according to the New York Post, this means The End Of Civilization As We Know It.

This should be a golden age for sex — if not the swinging-from-the-chandelier kind, then at least the regular, reliable fun type. The economy is booming, and America, and the world, are safer than ever. Young people can find willing mates just by swiping on their phones.
It’s a cushy, luxurious time. So why aren’t we naked and rolling around in bed to celebrate?

As always, I’m going to start off by asking the usual questions:  how do we know that people are having less sex — given that when asked about their sex lives, most people lie like Clintons anyway — and if we are making fewer beasts-with-two-backs, so what?

But let’s grant the writer’s hypothesis as truthful, and explore the issue.

The the Usual Suspects can be trotted out:  Internet porn, Netflix, Tinder, Fecesbook followings, constant checking of phones et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.  In other words, Westerners are finding things to do with their spare time other than to have sex.  There may be some truth to all of this:  Chinese peasants seem to have no problem procreating (within State-mandated limits, of course), nor do Nigerian tribesmen or Indian farmers.  In fact, go to any Third World area where there is no electricity and people are breeding like rabbits.  But as the article later suggests, it’s not all about reproduction:

A sexless society is a dying one, and not only for the obvious reason that sex produces babies to replenish the population.
Sex serves as a bonding agent between people in relationships, and when they stop having it, or have it a lot less, that affects the kind of connections they are forming. That loss of intimacy is a big problem.

Here’s my theory about all this.  It’s not one thing that’s causing this problem, it’s a multitude of things, and the arrival of mass entertainment as explained above is just one of them.

The danger to (Western) civilization is not a lack of shagging, but said civilization’s decades-long undermining by academia and other counter-culture hippies.  This is coupled with the wholesale immigration of hordes of people who (if the population growth stats are to be believed) do not have a no-bonking issue — rather, the reverse — but who have few if any ties to said Western civilization.  So the culture is being undermined, and replaced with one that is more, shall we say, primitive.  (Go on: challenge  that statement:  I dare you.)  In a hundred years’ time, when all vestiges of Anglo-Saxon / Judeo-Christian culture have disappeared and the United States looks and behaves more like, well, Central America, there will be no articles written about how sex is disappearing, I guarantee you.

As for the “sex-as-bonding” hypothesis, when we as a society have an easy-come-easy-go [sic] attitude towards relationships (including marriage, through no-fault divorce), commitment does not and cannot take place with only sex as the bonding agent.  Here’s where I can easily point a finger at today’s hook-up culture, made all the easier by applications such as Tinder;  if sex is seen as pure recreation long before a couple is married, its value as a bonding agent has been irreparably undermined.

Another problem:  find me a young married couple today (not living on a farm) where only one of the couple is working.  I’ll save you the trouble:  you won’t.  The plain fact is that even without the feministical Career-Girl Have-It-All-Baby influence, it is no longer easy, or even possible, to have a single wage-earner support a family — and I’m not talking about wealthy Wall Street financiers’ families (who typically don’t have large families anyway);  I’m talking about ordinary folk, to whom having more than one or two children means financial catastrophe unless both partners are working (and sometimes, even then).  When both partners are working their asses off, and have easy access to entertainment through their cell phones, it’s no great leap to understand why sex takes a back seat.  Add to that the fact that when a couple does finally have young children and / or babies, sex falls off a cliff, as any fule kno.

Let’s also address the other great issue:  people aren’t going to want to procreate (which is the primal instinct which drives the desire for sex) when the future is unknown, or uncertain.  I defy you again to find me any group of young people who have not experienced a layoff, or a company shutting down or being merged out of existence, or having a career suddenly disappear when their function is replaced by automation or foreign-based workers.  Once again, I’ll save you the trouble:  you won’t, because everyone under the age of forty has had one of the above happen to them, and probably more than once withal.

I also know that the Welfare State makes it easy for single parents to have multiple children, but I would argue that the Welfare State is not a feature of Western civilization, even though that’s where it’s most often found.  (Imagine, for example, the Founding Fathers seeing some modern urban ghetto, and their likely reaction upon learning how that lifestyle is subsidized, and you’ll get my point.)

I have no solution to this because as far as I can see, there is none.  At best, if a solution does exist, it’s going to be a.) incredibly difficult and time-consuming to implement, and b.) so unpopular (for a variety of reasons) that its chances of success are infinitesimally small.

I have no idea, for example, how to lower the cost of living to, say, 1950s-era levels where a family of four can live in a reasonably-modest dwelling, own one or two inexpensive cars, have enough to eat, and afford to give the kids a decent education — all on one salary, at a stable place of employment.  In order to get there, we’d have to make drastic changes to our national way of life, changes that I’m pretty sure that nobody would want to make.  I also have no clue how to instill the values of long-term commitment (from, say the early 1900s) into a generation which would resist that change mightily.  Those kinds of changes might make common sense if the goal were to improve our current society’s laissez-faire / “whatever”  attitude to, well, just about everything, but I just don’t see the Me-me-me Generation wanting to turn back the clock.  Good grief, most of them can’t tell time on a dial clock anyway, so what are the chances?

But should we somehow reach that state, I can guarantee that everyone would be having sex, and a lot of it.

The generation which produced the Baby Boom is all the historical evidence I need.


  1. “Good grief, most of them can’t tell time on a dial clock ”
    @Kim, my reply is a bit off topic, but here goes . . . . my almost 80-year old mother is a retired primary ed (3rd & 4th) grade teacher. Just for context, she hasn’t taught in probably the better part of 20 years. With that in mind, year after year, she had crops of urchins who couldn’t read an analog clock to save their lives. She taught ’em. Well. When I first learned of this as a much younger man, I declared, as an homage’ to her efforts, to NEVER AGAIN wear a digital watch. Screw progress. Gimme what works. On to point two . . .
    “Sex serves as a bonding agent between people in relationships” – we Jewish folks have known this for thousands and thousands of years. Seek out the book entitled “Kosher Sex” – the Rabbi/author posits that sex in a committed relationship is the glue which holds together the couple, strengthens the bonds, is a catalyst for true emotional intimacy, etc., etc., etc. This shit ain’t brain surgery. It’s common sense. Now if only the f*cking millennial generation (see Alexandra Occasional Cortex, Soc. NY) could put down their i-watches, their fitbits, their i-phones and actually start COMMUNICATING the old-fashioned ways, they’d be much more grounded.

  2. You want to lower the cost of living? Kick the illegal immigrants out. All of them. Kick the unemployed legal immigrants out, too. All of them. This both reduces the funds spent on welfares and improves job opportunities (and pay) for our own citizens.

    Then start on the welfare system. Start reducing benefits…but also consolidate the welfares. Right now, I can think of four Federal programs off the top of my head that feed poor children. Which is why poor kids are fat. I think they can do with a few fewer calories…and KNOW they can do with fewer bureaucrats to feed them.

    This lets you cut the taxes. Which in turn allows a working-class family to get ahead.

    Now, if you also start some wholesale regulation-cutting, the economy will REALLY pick up. Because people will be working to create actual wealth (as in Stuff To Use) instead of shuffling papers for the Permit Raj.

  3. I’m going to have to disagree with part of this.

    people aren’t going to want to procreate (which is the primal instinct which drives the desire for sex)

    The primal instinct is sex, not reproduction. Humans don’t go into estrus or musth, we’re pretty much always up for sex. Furthermore, the connection between PIV intercourse and pregnancy isn’t as obvious as we moderns tend to think. We’ve known of it for thousands of years, so we assume that it’s virtually instinctive knowledge, but how would that be? Men don’t get pregnant, we can’t smell that a woman is pregnant, we can’t smell, or otherwise sense, any degree of relatedness between ourselves and the offspring of any given f*uck-buddy, etc. Also there’s a significant delay between the act and it’s visible consequence. I get lucky tonight and a month or so later the young woman realizes that she’s pregnant. And if she’s spread for a dozen other guys (but only gotten pregnant the one time) then why would a connection between the sex and the pregnancy be evident? A woman can have hundreds or thousands of lovers in a given year, but she’ll only get pregnant one a year or so. That’s a horrible correlation, and the whole “correlation does not prove causation” is also not naturally self-evident, especially given that causative relationships are *perfectly* correlated.

    The connection between sex and reproduction is something that would have to have been discovered, just as the male role in determining the sex of the child had to be discovered (remember Henry the Eight ditching women who couldn’t bear him any sons? Wasn’t their faults, but he didn’t know any better).

    Once we realized, probably through observation of prey species that DID have annual mating seasons, that men were involved in reproduction, that men had children just as much as women did, then human society would’ve undergone a rather profound paradigm shift. Men’s territorial and survival instincts would be triggered on behalf of their children IFF they had reason to believe any given children were theirs.

    A man with exclusive rights to, and necessarily authority over, a given woman, can assume that the children she bears are *his* children (which is why female infidelity has historically been more severely punished than male infidelity…a man can’t convince a woman that the child be brings home from his mistress is actually his wife’s child, but she can trick him into believe that he’s the father of her boyfriend’s bastard). Once a man believes that a given child is the fruit of HIS loins, then his territorial instinct kicks in (MY child! MINE!) as well as his survival instinct (everyone dies, but a man’s bloodline can survive him through his children and grandchildren).

    Men will move Heaven and Earth for their own kids. Rather than sitting around the campfire eating fermented fruit and discussing the latest hunt, when not banging all the females of the tribe, *fathers* will dedicate that free time to protecting their children and trying to improve their conditions. A few million man-years of that and the end result is Civilization.

    Anyway, sorry about the long rant, but this is one of my hot button issues. If we really had a procreative instinct, then we wouldn’t see so many women willing to kill their own children, and so many men willing to have, and encourage, non-procreative sex, and human society would be *very* different.

  4. I’ll continue by adding that people used to accept a significantly lower standard of living in certain areas. Smaller houses. Fewer cars. A lot less in the way of electronic gimcracks. Women who could actually cook a meal from inexpensive raw materials instead of expensive prepackaged everything.

  5. ” people aren’t going to want to procreate (which is the primal instinct which drives the desire for sex) when the future is unknown, or uncertain. ”

    It’s not just the financial and economic factors you mention, but the loss of hope for improvements in the future. In the days of the Mercury/Gemini/Apollo space programs (in the US where I grew up in that time any rate) there was an overall optimistic sense that the future would be getting better and that we would keep improving.

    Then came the ascendancy of the Club of Rome’s Limits to Growth, and other Malthusian hysteria on how we’s all gonna die! Tomorrow! Exploited by politicians and the media as a means to increase their power base (fear mongering is always easier than actual leadership to motivate a population).

    I’m pretty sure there is a relationship between that line of thought and the economic factors you mentioned, and that they are mutually supporting.

    If you have hope that things are improving, an economic setback looks more like a temporary glitch that you can survive. If you buy in the Malthusian viewpoint, there’s no expectation that things will get better and any setback looks like a step down a slippery slope.

    If you have experienced a series of personal economic setbacks, it’s hard to care how great things will be in 5 or 10 or 100 years when you’re worried about making it through next month.

    Not so sure on which gave rise to which, and how to break that cycle.

  6. “I have no idea, for example, how to lower the cost of living to, say, 1950s-era levels where a family of four can live in a reasonably-modest dwelling, own one or two inexpensive cars, have enough to eat, and afford to give the kids a decent education — all on one salary, at a stable place of employment. In order to get there, we’d have to make drastic changes to our national way of life, changes that I’m pretty sure that nobody would want to make.”
    I don’t think I have all that much time left.
    Tell you what though. I’ll try to wait around ’til you finish this essay; just like to see what and how you’d do it.

    1. There’s some backlash developing against Feminism, but whether it will be enough to make the necessary changes I can’t say. We need to repeal Title IX, the EEOC, and all other forms of Affirmative Action. Let employers hire, or not hire, whomever they want for whatever reasons they want. Stop trying to *force* young women into the workforce and into STEM fields. Those changes alone would help.

      Further, abolishing all forms of tax-funded welfare, which serves mostly to reward social pathologies, would significantly reduce the incentive for out-of-(real)-wedlock childbirth and sloth.

      Outlawing abortion, no-fault divorce, and repealing the Nineteenth Amendment are less likely than my previous suggestions, and they’re pretty unlikely themselves:-(.

      Frankly I would be surprised if Western Civilization were to survive this century. Barring some medical breakthroughs, I’ll be dead before 2050, so hopefully civilization will out-live me and I won’t see the Collapse. As I have no children, and hence no emotional stake in the future beyond my own lifetime, my concern for the pose-me era is fairly academic. Good luck to whoever gets stuck with it though.

  7. I don’t know about sex, but we certainly aren’t having enough children. And that’s down to the women (obviously).

    I will just point out one thing: a lot of people keep saying, “Now is not the right time…” Well, there’s almost never a right time, but they’ll manage.

  8. Having grown up on a farm I can state with some authority that it is the hardest work you can find. That is if you are not a single crop farmer and a lot where not at one time. I don’t know many current crop farmers that make it with just farming.

    Death and destruction are the solution, unfortunately. Once we are on the ropes we show our true self.

    I have three kids and my wife works in the home (In Home Day Care for 7 kids under the ages of 3) .

    What ever you want to do you can.

  9. The major problem is taxes. Around 1950, my parents weren’t paying income tax, as it was really low, and child exemptions eliminated it. Not much in the way of other taxes then, either. A husband could afford a house, car, wife, and a bunch of kids. Fast forward to 1970, and taxes are much higher, everywhere, and the dollar devalued. You wonder why Boomers didn’t have as many children as their parents did? Tax rates driving women into the labor force. When they both have to work, kids are an afterthought. BTW, that’s one of the reasons the Boomers stand out, because they didn’t have as many kids as they were raised with.

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