Saturday, 27 April 2013

Book Review: Dominatus by D.W. Ulsterman

For some reason my review of Roosh's book proved incredibly interesting, so much so that over a thousand people bombarded this place in the space of 24 hours. Don't ask me why, I just write this stuff. Anyway, being the incorrigible bookworm that I am, I haven't exactly been idle when it comes to reading the works of others.

I'm a big fan of great dystopian literature- classic stuff like 1984, Farenheit 451, Brave New World  and a criminally underrated classic by Yevgeni Zamyatin called We are all part of my list of must-read books for anyone who is looking for a warning about where society is going and how to avoid the destruction of everything we hold dear. So when I see someone making a fair go at trying to adapt and adopt the same methods and ideas to a modern context, I'm generally more than willing to give his efforts my attentions. It didn't hurt that this book has a long list of 5-star reviews over at the Amazon Kindle store.

D.W. Ulsterman has attempted to portray a very bleak future in Dominatus. It pulls no punches about its subject matter. It is set in a world in which Barack Obarmy has gone from being (possibly the worst ever) President of the United States to the Benevolent Government Overlord (more or less) of something called the New United Nations. The world outlined in Dominatus is depressing in the extreme. The United States of America as we know it is gone. Every single Constitutional freedom has been eroded, destroyed, and discarded. Only one small bastion of freedom remains, deep in the Alaskan wilderness- a tiny community of just 100 people called Dominatus, a town in which men are free to live as they please, funded by a frail but very wealthy man who saw the way things were going in this country and chose to act to preserve the freedoms that he loved.

It all sounds like a fantastic setting for a really great, dark futuristic novel that pits the forces of government evil against a brave band of freedom fighters who just want to be left in peace. Sort of like The Empire Strikes Back, only without the 30-foot-tall mechanised walkers. Or Chewbacca. Or Billy Dee Williams- oh, wait, there's someone like that in the book, so never mind.

It is a truly terrible shame, then, that this book is such a dog's breakfast.

Ulsterman breaks the very first rule of good fiction writing almost immediately- show, don't tell. This book has all the subtlety of a clown fight, all the finesse of a Thunder Hammer, all the unpredictability of a drive down Route 50, and is only slightly more readable than A SENTENCE WRITTEN ENTIRELY IN CAPITAL LETTERS. (Or the final third of Atlas Shrugged, which if you think about it basically amounts to the same thing.) It's such a crying shame, because this book had real potential, but the author completely pissed it away through one-dimensional characters, mediocre writing, an utterly predictable plot, and... an... incredibly... irritating... insistence... on... using.. ellipsis... almost... every... other... word.

I'm not making up that last part, by the way. That is literally how every single line of dialogue in the entire book reads. Authors who write good dialogue understand intuitively that you must never make the written word resemble the spoken word in terms of the pauses, awkward breaks, silences, and spaces by making things explicit in your sentence construction. Instead, you let the reader's own mind do it for you. Let me put it this way: have you ever been unable to put down a court transcript? Have you ever actually read one, for that matter? Reading Dominatus is very much like reading a court transcript- the infuriating insistence on using ellipsis every other damn word makes supposedly "natural" dialogue less natural, not more. It stops me from imagining the characters as real people by making me see dots crawling all over the bloody page like ants around a lump of sugar.

Back to the actual content of this book. The novel is narrated by a guy whose father helped out one of the protagonists of the novel a while back and is visiting the town of Dominatus in Alaska to fulfil a promise he made to his dying father, who passed away under very suspicious circumstances. We only learn much later exactly why he is there- the narrator runs his own short-wave radio show dedicated to exposing the corruption and tyranny of the Brave New World Order that rules America under the iron fist of the New United Nations and its Secretary General, Obama. In Dominatus, the narrator meets Alexander Meyer, the Jewish former billionaire philanthropist who saw where things were going in America and decided to do something about it by creating a haven for free men and women. (So he's basically George Soros in reverse. Yeah, didn't see that one coming, at all...) He meets a former Special Forces operative named Mac, and various other people at Dominatus who tell him their stories about why they left the mainland behind and travelled deep into the Alaskan wilderness to escape tyranny.

He also meets Alexander Meyer's granddaughter, Dublin, and this is really where my second major problem with this book starts. It's completely predictable. I literally knew the moment that the granddaughter walked in that the narrator and Dublin would end up getting all starry-eyed with each other. The characters are about as multi-dimensional as those found in Atlas Shrugged- seriously, it's that bad. The most fleshed-out character is a actually a chap named Bear, who basically fulfils the Strong Silent Type role in this book but is otherwise completely incidental to the plot and does exactly nothing other than glower and beat the crap out of people during his time in the book.

The one-dimensional characters are worst when it comes to the baddies in this book. The main antagonist is some goon named August Hess- and the moment you read the name, you know that the author is going to pull the EEEEEEEVIL NAZI HENCHMAN card on you. Which, of course, is precisely what he does. August Hess isn't a real character, he's a cartoon, an over-amped frat boy with a trigger finger (on an electric stun gun, not a real pistol, which only serves to make him even less believable). There is a point later in the book where he executes an innocent woman with an ice pick through her ear in front of her daughter. Instead of being horrified and repulsed by that scene, which is what I should have been, I found myself thinking, "damn, that must have hurt a bit". That should give you some idea of just how poorly written these characters are- you don't really care about any of them. Even when Hess gets what is coming to him, in brutal and bloody fashion (through the kneecaps too, which is a horrifically painful place to get shot), I couldn't find any good reason to be happy about it. I was, at best, indifferent, because I had endured a whole book's worth of cartoonish Nazi stereotypes and I just couldn't be bothered any more. The truly terrifying, calculating evil of Josef Mengele from Boys from Brazil is nowhere to be found here at all.

As for the plot of the book, well, all I can say is that it was only slightly better than the atrocities committed against literature by writers like Kevin J. Anderson and Brian Herbert with their monumentally terrible sequels to the classic Dune series. If you've read Hunters of Dune, you know exactly what I'm talking about. Basically the good guys win in the end. Sort of. Because people decide to stand up to evil. Or something. Due to a massive case of deus ex machina, essentially. I'm not going to give away the ending, though I'm actually doing the book far more kindness than it deserves in the process, but let's just say that you'll see it coming a mile away.

In conclusion, this book was a great idea which was completely botched and butchered in its execution. There are far better ways to spend your time and money. I would simply recommend avoiding this book and its extremely irritating crimes against good punctuation, good storytelling, good characterisation, and good pacing, and recommend reading a really worthwhile post-apocalyptic novel like World War Z instead.

Verdict: 2/5. The author took a potentially great idea and made a complete and utter hash of it. There are better books out there far more worthy of your time and money.

Weekend Linkage

Another bonkers week at work, hence the basically total radio silence here at DR. Not to worry though, there is plenty of good stuff out there to keep you busy this weekend:

* Many happy returns in advance, madam- and might I say, she is quite  a beauty. (RPW, if you're reading this, you should have no problem whatsoever figuring out the reference.)
** Let me make it clear right now that I completely disagree with D&P on the idea of taking anabolic steroids for workouts- and while I do wear 5-Fingers to the gym, I'm not exactly one of those "geeks" that he's dumping on. Every last bit of my lifting progress has come naturally, without steroids, and I'm stronger than like 95% of those damn curl bro pussies at my gym. And I'd really like to see D&P take on this guy, who is an all-natural lifter and makes me look like a complete wuss.
*** I first heard of these guys about 2 years ago via and was just blown away by the power of Kobra Paige's voice (yeah all right, her real name is Brittany). Her vocal style has changed significantly since those early days, but damn she can sing!

The Deep Introvert's Burden

Here at DR I've posted before on the nature of the game for a deep introvert. I do this both as a way to help others find their way into the game and to build my own game, such as it is. It never ceases to amaze me just how poorly understood introverts tend to be- and how poorly they often understand themselves, which is why they often see far poorer results than they should.

To me, game isn't (just) about picking up women- that is a small part of a much larger set of rules and ideas. Game might as well be considered a program of self-improvement, because it is about reaching an intuitive understanding of one's strengths and weaknesses in order that one might enhance the former and mitigate the latter. Game is a tool that allows an introvert to short-circuit the daily struggle that is the reality of our existence- and make no mistake, the life of a deep introvert in modern society is a constant, endless, exhausting struggle. This is a truth that is not well understood even by other introverts who are more socially adept than the deepest of deep introverts, like me and my fellow INTJs. The world around us, at least in this country, is designed almost by default to recognise and reward those who self-advertise, those who speak loudly, those who seek attention. It is most assuredly not designed to  reward those who seek nothing more than to be left in peace to live as they see fit.

A deep introvert has few choices; only one of them is particularly palatable:

  1. Become something he is not in the (vain) hope of being left alone, and thereby give up everything that he most likes and values about himself;
  2. Retreat entirely from society into a kingdom of the mind, which means cutting himself off from everything and everyone that matters to him;
  3. Embark on projects of self-improvement through game, martial arts, firearms training- you name it, just do it. Remember that your mission has to come first.
If you are a deep introvert, the fact is that no matter where you stand, no matter what you do, no matter where you go, you are and will always be alone. You are apart from everyone else, and nothing will ever change this. Because you seek solitude and silence, you will be singled out as "defective" pretty much the moment you walk into a room. Even if you are ambitious and talented, you will often find your talents and energies being wasted on nonsense by those who possess less than a tenth of your skills. No doubt you often find yourself wishing that you could be more outgoing, that you could easily open up to others and dominate conversations through sheer volume rather than through the power of your ideas- but every time you try to change, you realise that changing means giving up the very things that make you who you are. It means giving up the very things that you like and appreciate most about yourself. And in the end, that choice becomes simply unpalatable.

If you are a male deep introvert, the challenges of social life can often range from severe to insurmountable. Women, in particular, will treat you with an almost casual cruelty- and they'll do it unknowingly too, which makes it both funnier and more painful. Here's a personal example: recently I was supposed to meet with my former protege for a drink, but I wasn't exactly surprised when she sent me a long text message saying that she was "gonna have to bail" due to work commitments and would see us (me and my team) the following week for a drink. My response was terse even by my standards- literally "too bad, see you later". Fast forward to a few days ago when I arrived late at said event, saw her out of the corner of my eye, left to hit the head, came back, and discovered she'd just left. Not one word exchanged, not even so much as "hello". My reaction: "her loss, now does this place serve a decent Merlot?" Thing is, the kid is actually very feminine and very enjoyable to be around; but, flakiness must never be tolerated, and no self-aware man should ever allow flaking to shake him.

By the way, flakiness is neither surprising nor wrong. It is the way women are, and there is no point getting angry or frustrated about it. Every deep introvert male, ever, has had to endure this, often multiple times from multiple women. It just isn't worth getting worked up about it. It does not matter that I trained her personally to be the best at her job, and nor should it. Your choices as a deep introvert are to sulk over the implied rejection, or to get on with life and to develop the personality tools to minimise the impact and damage of flaking. It isn't difficult to figure out which one I chose.

If you are a female deep introvert, well, my sympathies. After nearly 30 years of travel, writing, and meeting people (when I can be bothered), I can claim to know maybe three female INTJs, in any capacity. One is my former manager at my very first corporate job from nearly 10 years ago. One is this lady. And one is RedPillWifey, whose blog posts on being penetrated (heh) by red pill wisdom have done much to restore my often-minimal faith in the female half of our species. Unfortunately, ladies, life on your own doesn't get any easier than it does for us blokes. In some ways, it's even more difficult. Society from your parents onwards expects you to behave a certain way as women, and part of that behaviour, at least for Americans, means being the sweet and charming ray of sunshine that is the feminine ideal. If you are lucky, you will find a partner early on who will make your solitude easier to bear. If you are not lucky, like my former manager, you will probably get married late in life and for reasons that are... shall we say, perhaps not the best. Paradoxically, your natural inclinations to keep to yourself and live in your own head are what attract introverted males very strongly- but they also keep us from finding you, and vice versa. It's the classic introvert's dilemma, and there is not much you can do about it.

Since I write from a male perspective, I can only give male advice on how to deal with the solitude and the isolation that comes from being a deep introvert. If you get stuck for too long in isolation, you come to understand almost nothing else. The result is a never-ending cycle of silence and solitude, more even than a deep introvert needs or can bear. My advice on the subject is not going to be to make yourself more extroverted. That's just plain silly because it would be like forcing Microsoft software- slow, bloated, conformist, mass-marketed, standardised, inflexible, monolithic- to run on hardware optimised for Linux- fast, independent, adaptable, flexible, endlessly customisable- and you'll inevitably run into a massive conflict between the desires of your introverted nature and the demands of an extroverted society.

I've written before on the importance of mission to any man who wishes to better himself. This means finding something that you want to do, and then just doing it. No excuses, no regrets. Sure, you might fail; well, so what? You'll learn from it and move on. And as with everything else, the only way to accomplish your mission is constant practice. It doesn't matter whether you're talking about weightlifting, martial arts, driving, pistol shooting, or approaching women. Put it this way- when I first started powerlifting, I had absolutely no idea what the hell I was doing. I could not imagine squatting 315lbs. Fast forward to nearly 2 years later, and you could wake me up in the middle of the night, point me to a power rack, and I'd still be able to squat with decent form. It's all muscle memory now. So will it be with any endeavour to which a strong man truly dedicates himself. That's the reason why Roosh, for instance, is the best at what he does- constant, endless, tireless practice. If that is what you are aiming to become, then take that advice to heart, and apply it. You have only your weaknesses to lose, and mastery to gain.

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Dubya Reconsidered

The Telegraph is known in the UK as a "right-wing" newspaper (though here in the US it would qualify as very much a centrist or even left-wing publication), and even then is not exactly known for being a cheerleader for George W. Bush. So it's interesting to see that even Dubya's British critics are beginning to reconsider his awfulness, especially in light of how bad Obarmy is by comparison:
He was certainly more socially liberal than some critics give him credit for. No Child Left Behind, whatever its faults and funding, was a centralised attempt to raise educational standards across the board. 
A new prescription drug benefit scheme may have been expensive (though Bush himself argues its cost has been exaggerated) but its aim was to make medicines more affordable for the elderly. 
Bush failed in his most ambitious social reform of immigration law, but he was defeated primarily by the Right of his party, not the Democrats. 
The Obama administration may blame Bush for the crippled economy it inherited, but it has for the most part been unable to rescind his tax cuts and indeed believes in extending them for all but the richest. For the time being, the tax argument has been won by conservatives. Liberals may have berated Bush for the security policies of his “war on terror”, but they have been continued and in some regards expanded by President Obama. 
Writing in the Washington Post recently, Jennifer Rubin argued that “Bush seems to be a more accomplished Republican figure in the Obama era”, while summarising his successes. 
Bush himself has told the Dallas Morning News, in an exclusive interview, that he still stands for the “compassionate conservatism” that he ran on in 2000. 
“I’m comfortable with what I did,” he said. “I’m comfortable with who I am.” 
On the debit side, the list remains heavy. His tax cuts and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq produced budget deficits, which were compounded by a recession and economic stimulus spending. Bush inherited a $5.7 trillion debt, which became a $10.6 trillion debt, and bequeathed his successor an economy on the verge of collapse. 
Obama duly expanded health care and stimulus spending, endured a second recession, deepening the debt still further. 
As points out, both presidents are to blame for taking the debt to record levels. Indeed in Washington they both occupy the broad middle ground, where most presidents find themselves.
I can't say that I think much of this admittedly mild effort at historical balance and revisionism. To me, the 43rd and 44th Presidents might as well be one and the same. The only thing that changed between the two administrations was the degree of awfulness, not the awfulness itself. George W. Bush was not, and is not, a conservative in any meaningful sense of the word. He is and has always been a progressive. His "compassionate conservatism" and his constant efforts to reach out to Hispanic voters were deliberate strategies designed to take into account the realities of this country's changing electorate, but were no less disastrous for that.

And yet, there are still certain things I admire about Dubya. As President, he was far more willing to work with the opposition than his successor (though that is not a Good Thing given that government in this country is essentially a choice between degrees of evil and stupid). I never got the sense that he was trying to fundamentally reshape this country. I always got the impression that he was, if nothing else, a good and decent man trying to do what he felt was right in an indecent time.

I do not excuse any of the mistakes he made, and they are legion. His insistence on foreign adventurism in Iraq was inexcusable. His attempts to bypass the Constitution are unforgivable. The fact that he signed the bloody PATRIOT Act into law, and allowed the many abominations it has since spawned to live, is enough to destroy his legacy. His health care bill for old people was just plain stupid. His insistence on centralising education through NCLB was another example of progressive stupidity that has made things unequivocally worse, not better.

Despite all of these things, his abuses of civil liberties were nowhere near as bad as Barack Obama's. His successor took Bush's three wars and turned them into five or six, and now this country is potentially looking at American involvement in Chechnya at a time when America simply cannot afford any further strain upon the public fisc. Obarmy basically tossed the Constitution into the shredder and has happily carried on since as the blithering idiot that he is; Bush, despite his public image as a bumbling buffoon, is actually very intelligent and extremely well read.

I believe that future generations will look back at Barack Obama and George W. Bush as basically one and the same, with the first simply representing a more extreme level of stupidity and danger than the second. But I believe that history will also be kinder to Dubya than it will be to Obarmy. President Jackass entered high office as a messianic figure, and completely failed to deliver the goods to his loony left-wing base. For that, at least, we should be profoundly grateful; if the current POTUS wasn't a lazy, mentally insipid, politically ham-fisted, incompetent fool, life would be unimaginably worse than it already is.

No, You CAN'T Have It All

Red Pill Wifey posted a good take on a recent study that shows that highly educated women are dropping out of the workforce at record rates:
I have a hunch about this, and about these statistics in general. I think women go to Harvard or Princeton to get their business degrees, and happen to fall in love with the Cute Guy sitting across the way in Economics 101. Love turns to marriage, marriage to kids, and Cute Guy ends up with an Elite Job, so they can afford for her to stay home. And so she takes the opportunity. So she essentially spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to land a rich husband, whether she realizes it or not. 
Just how much does that elite degree count for once you’ve been out of the workforce for 5-10 years? 
But I’m not sure about the Rich Husband Hypothesis, because obviously the couple would be absolutely swimming in student loan debt. Do elite college degrees actually net that much more money? Obviously so if he ends up a CEO of a Fortune 500 company, but how many MBA students from elite schools turn CEO? I know I have readers way smarter than me on this subject, what do you guys think?
Mrs. Red Pill is correct to state (earlier in her post) that women who go to elite schools end up receiving a very expensive lesson in the realities of life- women cannot, in fact, have it all. By the time a woman learns this, she's often swimming in debt, living a lifestyle to which she is enslaved, unable to get out- trapped by the very status and privilege that she was told were hers by right.

I cannot count the number of women I have personally seen falling into this trap myself. I went to two pretty "elite" schools myself (though the actual quality of the education that I received, particularly in economics, is highly debatable). I met some very smart, very pretty women at both places. One is a VP of product development at a hedge fund in Connecticut. One has jumped from one Japan-focused Rates sales job to another at a number of big banks. One is an investment banker (and a pretty damn good one too). One is the head of trading ops at another hedge fund. One, whom I personally trained, jumped from where I work to a startup firm and straight into a sales/account management job. One is in charge of social media at some fashion start-up in London.

I could go on, but you get the idea. These women do, in theory, have it all.

In practice, they don't.

Take my former protege. She lives in an apartment with two guys and another girl, a living arrangement that would drive me insane within about a week (though to be fair, she is a people person and I most definitely am not.) She's going to be 24 this year, and (last time I checked) she's not interested in dating- which makes her a prime candidate for mid-30s spinsterhood, as far as I'm concerned. I do hope I'm wrong, because I am genuinely fond of that girl. (The fact that she's very easy on the eyes doesn't hurt.)

Or take that VP in CT. She got married at 18, had her first child at 20, and is a working mother; indeed, I'm pretty sure she's the major breadwinner in that family. She's now pregnant with her second child, and I've no doubt that the strain of having a child, a husband, another child on the way, and a demanding career is getting to her.

My friend in Japanese sales is the woman whose wedding I attended almost exactly 2 years ago in Hawaii. She hated the demands her career placed upon her. She never really wanted that lifestyle. Yet she felt that it was the only option available to her. When she found her then-boyfriend, a trader in Japan, and came back with him to the US, she was out of work for over a year and basically stayed home as a hausfrau of sorts. Didn't seem to do anything to damage her looks or sweet disposition, though.

My bankster friend is practically my second sister, I dearly love that woman. She makes me laugh like no one else (beside my real sister) can. Yet she's over 30, and though she's spoken for now, she's finding it difficult to contemplate the idea of settling down and having a "normal" life, even though I know that this is what she really wants in her life. And she can't avoid it, because she is addicted to the status that comes from wheeling and dealing in the world she works in now. I've seen the neighbourhood she lives in, it's fantastic- but it's also bloody expensive, and you can't achieve that kind of lifestyle without paying through the nose for it.

My friend in social media is someone I've known since high school. She got through a LTR that hurt her very badly. When I met her in London recently, I dropped some heavy red-pill wisdom on her (which was immensely good fun- there is nothing quite so enjoyable as hamster extermination) and I quickly realised that she was only now beginning to figure out that feminism was and is a massive con job. She's faced with the prospect of "settling", and it was great fun, in a very dark way, to watch her hamster spinning hard against the logical part of her brain in this matter. She knows she wants a good man in her life- but she doesn't want to settle for some Beta male.

In my experience, the women that I knew growing up who got married early to Beta men were very pretty and very smart, but "married up" to men who were and are much better off than they are. This actually seems to suit them quite well. One girl I went to high school with was this ridiculously entitled (and completely flat-chested) Russian brunette whose face looks a bit like a cross between a banana and a pancake. (I'm not joking or exaggerating.) She married a very rich Russian guy after working in a big British bank in EM Sales for a while, and she seems very happy to be pampered and generally fussed over by a rich guy. I do wonder, though, what exactly the point was of all of that very expensive education if all she's going to do with it is go shopping.

The greatest delusion of feminism is that it teaches women that they can work fewer hours than men, in less demanding jobs, with fewer consequences for failure, and earn the same amount of money and live the same kinds of lifestyles. That delusion has proven to be insanely expensive for them and for society as a whole, and at some point- I don't know when- it will crash face-first into the brick wall of reality at 100mph and shatter into bloody ruin.

Until then, though, we're stuck with some 60-70% of women working full-time, instead of working to further civilisation and progress by raising strong, masculine sons and feminine, pleasant daughters.

Red Pill Aggregator

Manospherians- for those of you (like me) who lament the demise of Google Reader in a few short months, here is a great blog aggregation tool to give you your regular dosage of anti-Matrix goodness every day. (Courtesy of Mrs. Red Pill Wifey- kudos, madam.)

Head over to Viva La Manosphere and have a dig around.

Book Review: Why Can't I Use a Smiley Face? by Roosh Vorek

Roosh's latest book- really just a compilation of short stories, as usual- is now available for download, and rather like the rest of his writing, it's definitely setting off waves in the Manosphere. I read it shortly after a couple of other bloggers- Matt Forney and Danger & Play- had posted positive reviews about it, and this is my take on the book.

Why Can't I Use a Smiley Face? basically describes Roosh's trip back to the US to visit his parents and siblings, and in many ways this is a very poignant set of stories to read because it gives you some idea of how much the game changes a man over time. Roosh, as far as I can tell, comes from a broken home, in the sense that his parents divorced a long time back and he spends most of his time with his father rather than his mother and sister. Despite this, he seems to be very close to his siblings and tries to give them the benefit of his experiences and hard-won wisdom.

The vignettes in this collection are of varied and often uneven quality. The best ones, though, are the stories that focus on his interactions with his family, and show just how different he is now compared to what he used to be before he got into the game and eventually became the pillager and conqueror of European pussy that he is today. Those particular stories showcase how much the game changes a man, and how dislocated a man can feel when he re-enters an utterly feminised society that he rejected in the first place.

I think D&P put it best in his review of this book:
Smiley Face is actually my favorite Roosh book. I’ve read it as, “Roosh grows up.” That may sound [condescending] at first, but it’s not. Consider his development, which is the same one many of us had. We were all once dorks. The difference is some of us go through that phase to become something better. 
Like most American men, he thought that going to college, getting a degree, getting a good job, and being a solid guy was enough to meet women. If you read his own blog, you get the sense that he’s a nice guy. He would have been the kind of guy that we would have wanted our sisters to date.
Pretty much (though I hesitate as to whether I'd want Roosh dating my sister- not that he would, given that my sister has... weight issues, of the kind that I struggled with for years before I found the 'Sphere). What struck me most about Smiley Face is the sense of loss, of dislocation, that Roosh feels when he comes back for what should have been a wonderful homecoming. I've felt something very similar for the past few years whenever I've gone home. I've had to educate myself the hard way about life in ways that my parents and sister simply don't understand and don't agree with at all. And I come from an extremely close-knit, very stable family, in many ways the polar opposite of Roosh's background. As Roosh puts it in the book, the anticipation and joy that come from the thought of going home often greatly exceed the actual experience of being home.

This book is worth reading if only for the warning that it gives men like us. The game will fundamentally change your view of women. You won't see them as special princesses any more. You won't see them as automatically worthy of love and affection. At your worst, you will often see them as conveniences, even as just pieces of meat. This is a dangerous attitude, but it comes from what society has done to women, and by extension to us. The feminised society we live in today is a disaster nearly 50 years in the making, and by rejecting it we are rejecting a very deeply rooted culture that will do everything in its considerable power to destroy us. What Roosh's book delivers is an antidote of sorts to that venom.

Fundamentally, many of those who got into the game were decent "nice guy" Betas who were tired of being abused and tormented by a society that is polarising the sexual market place at a rate never before seen in human history. Roosh points out that in some ways, he never lost that "nice guy" appeal- as he says to his mother when she goes off at him for not treating women nicely, whenever he has a woman over at his place in Europe, he very often cooks for her, buys her drinks, treats her well, and generally acts like a real gentleman. (This is of course after he's crushed ass, which is the critical distinction between Roosh and most Nice Guys who make the mistake of thinking that buying flowers and drinks and dinners will get them to that stage.) Many men who have taken the Red Pill- I would wager most of us- really do want to find that one girl who will make all the rest look ugly and stupid in comparison, the one who we can spend the rest of our lives with. But one of the consequences of taking the Red Pill is that, by ripping away the veil of pretty lies that has blinded us for so long, our search becomes paradoxically MUCH more difficult.

Roosh's work in providing structure and form to the style of game that he teaches is invaluable. Just as invaluable is his work that shows the effects of the Red Pill on a former Nice Guy Beta. This book is worth reading, especially if you've read Bang and Day Bang, just to see that transformation in action.

Verdict: 3.5/5; uneven writing quality, but the good greatly outweighs the bad, so it's still very much worth reading.

Book Review: The Wardog's Coin by Vox Day

(It so happens that the inside cover of this pair of short stories has one of the usual "Praise for A Throne of Bones" things in it, and that section references my review of that book. That was my first internet-published book review, of any kind, so I appreciate the hat-tip there. Even if I was referenced as "Didact's Reach" and not "Didact". Vox, in the unlikely event that you read this, please note.)

After the brilliant success that was A Throne of Bones, Vox seems to be content to release a set of short stories set in and around the world of Selenoth that he created as "samplers" of sorts until the second book in his Arts of Dark and Light series is released. These serve both as a way of introducing new readers to his writing style and the world that he has created, and to keep longtime readers (like me) happy until he finally releases his next epic tome.

His latest release is a pair of short stories, one set in the familiar world that he created with Summa Elvetica and A Throne of Bones, and one set in the same basic world, but rather different in style, tone, and approach. The first story is The Wardog's Coin, which tells the story of a mercenary fighting for the Savonders alongside the forces of the Elves against a massive army of Orcs and Goblins. The second, Qalabi Dawn, is definitely the more interesting of the two, if only because it tries something completely new and introduces a new race into the world of Selenoth. I'll go over each story separately, for they are very different, but both stories can be read entirely on their own.

First up we have the eponymous story of the pair, which is narrated from the perspective of a mercenary sergeant paid by the Savonders to hold the line against a massed Orc/Goblin army. The sergeant is "volunteered" by his captain to work with an Elvish mage for a night mission into the Orc war camp to destroy some three hundred warboars that the Orc general plans to use to smash through the comined Elven and Savondese lines the next day. Having gone through with the mission with, shall we say, mixed results, the sergeant prepares his men for the coming battle and fights on through to that battle's end.

In this story, Vox showcases two real talents: his ability to adopt the voice and mannerisms of his intended narrator, and his skill at describing battle in vivid and realistic detail. In the former, the sergeant really does come across as a non-commissioned officer- one of at best middle-school education, with a poor command of grammar and diction, but one who cares deeply about his men and shows it by bawling them out whenever possible. Vox isn't consistent in this, however, which shows that he does have limitations as a writer (which I think he himself would readily admit); I found that from time to time the sergeant's grammar would suddenly become rather too polished for an uneducated, battle-hardened mercenary before lapsing back into the speech patterns of an old salt. I would venture a guess that this is what happens when you're a superintelligence; you cannot help but be too clever by half once in a while. In the hands of a lesser writer, this would be an outright annoyance instead of juts a minor flaw; Vox manages to restrain himself admirably and succeeds in delivering a realistic narrative. (I am not, by the way, the first person to note these slip-ups in voice; Vox himself posted a defence, of sorts, of his writing recently.)

His other great skill is in describing battle scenes. Anyone who has ever read Vox's blogs knows damned well that the man is an avid reader of history, and anyone who read his descriptions of the battles between Amorr's legions in ATOB will know that Vox's understanding of classic infantry tactics is excellent. I personally think that he ranks right up there with writers like Ross Leckie, who wrote a phenomenal trilogy on the Punic Wars, and Robert Harris, whose work on the Rome of Cicero is required reading for anyone who loves great historical fiction. Fans of Vox's previous work and of the other two authors mentioned here will NOT be disappointed with The Wardog's Coin. The description of the night operation in the Goblin camp is amazingly well done- you literally feel like you're there, racing among the warboars to complete the mission. The subsequent battle is described in brutal detail- though perhaps not quite as brutal as the PoV narratives from ATOB. It is, after all, a short story. The aftermath of the battle, which is where Vox wraps up the story, is definitely the best part; there's a real sense of poetry in the manner in which Vox describes the loss of dear comrades, the feeling of achievement, and the hopes represented by each coin that the sergeant collects from his fallen friends. The very last line of the story alone is worth the price of admission here.

From the human perspective of battle against Goblins and Orcs, we move to something completely different in Qalabi Dawn. This story introduces the race of cat-people that inhabit Selenoth's desert lands, far to the south (at least, I think it's to the south...) of Amorr, the Elven kingdom of Merithaim, and the lands of the Savondese nobles. The story tells of the attempts of a young Khatuuli (cat-people) warrior to unite his people against the coming attack of a massed Amorran legion bent on genocide. As is expected with a short story, this one skips through time rather rapidly, instead of concentrating in detail on the campaign of unification and the final stand of the Chiu against the legions of Amorr.

If you've ever seen a great old movie called Zulu Dawn, or read the stories of the Battle of Isandlwana, one way to think of and relate to QD is to think of it as though we're looking at that battle sort of in reverse from the perspective of Zulus with cat heads. (Yeah, OK, it sounds weird; bear with me a moment here.) Essentially, the Amorrans send in two legions against a numerically inferior force of cat-people, but their leader is a bureaucrat and politician, not a strategist. The leader of the cat-people strives hard to unify the tribes of the descendants of Baasia (I'm reaching here, but I think this is a reference to Bastet, the Egyptian cat-headed war goddess of the Middle Kingdom)- as Vox puts it, "[a]ll of the Khatuuli are descendants of Baasia; they are quite literally demonspawn", which is why Amorr sets out to destroy them.

I rather like the way Vox strives for authenticity with this story. He's genuinely good at adopting the voice of his character and giving it authenticity through use of idiom, vernacular, and vulgarity. In this particular case, he uses actual Swahili words to lend some authenticity to his descriptions, although I personally had no idea what the hell the difference was between the Chiu, the Simba, and the Duma beyond knowing that "simba" is Swahili for "lion". Unfortunately, his attempts to make the story seem authentic fall a little flat because of the pace of the story; it's a bit uneven, rushed, maybe even forced.

Therein lies one of several major defects with Qalabi Dawn: it's much less accessible than the previous stories because it feels as if it was just sort of tacked on as an afterthought. This sense of being a bit overly hurried to get on with things really comes to the fore with the final battle scenes, which lose a lot of their force because Vox basically cuts out all the cutting. No, really. There is no epic final pitched battle, no mighty clash of sword and shield against tooth and claw. There's basically the build-up to a battle, and then the battle itself gets skipped over completely to segue straight into a sneak attack that brings the story to a rather abrupt close.

The other major defect is that if you haven't read any of Vox's other work, especially the centrepiece tome that started off this whole thing, then QD won't make the least bit of sense to you. It's not a story you can read in isolation. If you haven't read ATOB, you won't have the first clue as to why the Amorrans send in two full legions to crush the Khatuuli, because you won't really know that they're demonspawn and the products of the Witchkings, against whom the Amorrans fought a brutal and terrible war. You'll be left wondering just why you're reading a story about a bunch of cat-people running around the desert picking fights among themselves in order to fight an even more deadly enemy. So my advice to you is to read ATOB, then SE, then everything else, before reading this.

Also, this story had a certain... predictability about it that I found rather depressing. Like Vox, I am a complete bookworm. I'm always reading. And because I've read many, many, many books in the course of my life, I tend to recognise themes and patterns in writing very quickly. This is why, with books written by lesser writers, I tend to be able to predict very quickly whether the protagonist will get with the attractive young woman who was just introduced as the granddaughter of the enigmatic mystic at the centre of the story, for instance. (I'm reading a book called Dominatus which does exactly this, with 100% predictability. More on that later.) The reason I bring this up is that if you got the reference to the Battle of Isandlwana a bit earlier up, you'll know almost immediately how this story ends up for both the legions of Amorr and the Khatuuli. You'll also know, within moments of reading the first ten pages or so, how the young Chiu chieftain's quest for unification of his tribe pans out.

This is not to say that QD is necessarily a bad story. It's actually quite good. It's just not nearly as good as TWC, because all of the best elements of TWC- the action, the intensity, the ability to relate to the main character, the sense of camaraderie between characters, the sense of overarching purpose to the tale- are all missing from QD.

Overall, given that these two stories are available on Amazon for a bargain-bin price and given the quality of Vox's previous works, I'd say that you owe it to yourself to head over there and buy/download The Wardog's Coin. I'm very much looking forward to the next book in The Arts of Dark and Light, and the next set of short stories from the world of Selenoth are due for release in May, apparently. That one should explain the origins of the demonspawn and the fall of the Witchkings, which should be great fun to read.

Verdict: I give TWC 4.5/5 and QD 3/5; altogether, given that TWC is the bulk of the collection, I'd say we're looking at a 3.8/5. Definitely worth your time to buy and read.

Weekend Linkage

*If you're a real man and drink real booze, trust me when I say that this recipe is ridiculously girly
** I've had "The Dethalbum" on near-constant rotation for the last few days; DETHKLOK plays truly AMAZING death metal, especially when you consider that the music is basically the soundtrack to a borderline-insane cartoon played on Adult Swim

Barack Obama: Pussy-Whipped POTUS?

I was hoping to link to an article over at Return of Kings written earlier this week about President Obarmy, but for some reason, that article was taken down. It's just a good thing that I emailed it to myself for later reference, because it's a damn good take on a bloody awful president. Honestly, I don't know what it is about you Americans that makes you elect such tools into high office; all I can say is that if people get the politicians they deserve, then there truly is no hope for your country.

My feelings about Barack Obama are, I imagine, fairly clear: I can't stand the guy. (I couldn't much stand his predecessor either, or the two before that one, so it's not like I have a particular bone to pick with your current Glorious Leader.) His basic instinct is to piss all over your Constitution and Bill of Rights, and he's VERY good at doing it. That sort of thing annoys the bejeezus out of me, so when I see articles pointing out what a Delta this guy is, I can't help but enjoy them.
In what can only be described as the most absurd sign of the times, President Obama practically had his balls removed for remarking that California Attorney General, Kamala Harris, was a bit of a hottie. 
While speaking at a California fund raiser, he introduced her thusly: ”She’s brilliant and she’s dedicated, she’s tough… She also happens to be, by far, the best looking attorney general.” When the crowd gave him a bit of a frosty reception, he added, ”It’s true! C’mon!” 
After stuck up, hypocritical, waste of space commentators from both Communist liberal and conservative camps took to Twitter to hammer his remarks as “unsettling,” “disgraceful,” and “disrespectful,” the poor pussy-whipped president had to issue a public statement saying he “regretted” the move. 
Not even five years ago a statement like this would have been reserved for the discovery that he’d been banging her and they had a love child. Eliot Spitzer and John Edwards got off lightly for their indiscretions; by these standards they should have had their dicks cut off in public. 
The fine lady is 48, mixed race, and she looks quite attractive, which is unusual for politics. A lot of women in politics look like their father was an Orc and their mother was a Cave Troll. Obama is a miserably happily married man. What’s the big deal ?
So what’s the moral of the story, even for a closet Marxist like Obama? 
If Obama had called her an ugly old bat, certainly that would have been offensive, but normally praising someone’s appearance is considered a compliment. If Brad Pitt had taken up law and become Attorney General of California, would it be insulting to call him the most good looking Attorney General? If Obama had been at a function with Arnold Schwarzenegger, back in the day when he was governor, would a quirky comment about him being the most muscular governor have been offensive? The press, who seem to be in on this most hypocritical feminist rant against Obama, were quick to call Arnie the “Governator.” Nicknames like this are more derogatory than flattering, but made with a bit of humor, where is the harm ? 
What are we supposed to glean? That by flattering a woman about her looks, you demean her professional capacity? Does that mean if I’m in a business meeting and a women comments that she likes my suit or haircut I should take it as an offensive remark? File for discrimination? 
Are we so hung up on being politically correct that we can blast the president for making a cheeky but flattering, alpha male comment about a fellow government employ, but we’re not allowed to mention the $18 trillion dollar debt he has run up while in office? I mean never mind the tasty Californian lawyer, Barack has been pushing wheel barrows of the green dough faster than a Colombian drug baron. 
This kind of politically correct attitude is only allowed to flourish when a nation is beginning its terminal decline. The old “emperor’s got no clothes” fable, tells of the idiocy of the general public who couldn’t dare mention that the finest tailor had left the King with nothing on. King Louis XVI would tell you, if he hadn’t had his head sliced off in a guillotine, that prancing about in fancy clothes and spouting platitudes doesn’t help when half the nation is sliding into poverty. We’re all busy believing fairy tales, and distracted when feminist rants about a hottie lawyer hit the headlines. 
I suspect we don’t have to worry about feminism or the trillions in debt for too much longer. If people don’t understand that financial reality is more important than some politically correct jokes, we’ll be crawling about in a real life Mad Max, trying to find some fuel so we can steal a few shotgun shells and shoot at the crazy bikers chasing after us. 
I’ll leave you with two quote from the founding fathers: 
“America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” Abraham Lincoln 
“Freedom is not a gift bestowed upon us by other men, but a right that belongs to us by the laws of God and nature.”Benjamin Franklin 
If you can’t understand these quotes and you’re not prepared to stand up and fight for them. 
And here are six photos that confirm Obama’s pussy-whipped status: 

I’ve never seen a First Lady who was so repulsed by her beta husband.

"Marry in Haste, Repent at Leisure"

The Elusive Wapiti wrote recently about the consequences of entering into marital "bliss" without any game:
In sum, my friend and I made several mistakes in the run-up to our marriages and in the years after we were married, mistakes that eventually proved fatal to our marriages. From being unequally yoked, to following the wrong marriage model, to marrying a woman with the wrong values, to not cherishing our wives, to over-investing in kiddos, to not cleaving from one's parents and cleaving to each other, the aggregated weight of mistakes my friend and I made helped set us up for divorce several years later. Thus for those fellows inclined toward marriage--and I posit that only religious men marry in today's legal and social climate, yet most of us will take the plunge at some point in our lives--I pray that you will heed the experience of others.
It's a rather long post, but I recommend reading the whole thing in full. It should serve as a stark warning to those of you who are thinking about marriage, or who are already married and are seeing signs of stress or fracture in your marriages.

To EW's thoughts, I can only add what I saw from visiting two of my oldest and closest friends in Europe recently. One of them got married last year, the other is getting married later this year. One friend is a second-generation Indian immigrant, the other is British born and bred. The two could not provide a greater contrast if they tried- one short, energetic, focused, and sharp-tongued, the other tall, laid-back, with typically English wonky teeth and an amiable manner that best expresses itself over a pint of real ale.

My first friend introduced me to his then-girlfriend about 4 years ago when I was last passing through London on a flying visit back to the US. The moment I met her, I immediately found myself wondering what my buddy had gotten himself into; she was a Latin American social worker, a 6 at best on a very very good day, a vegetarian, and frankly a bit of a hippie. I was quite civil with her, mostly out of respect for my friend, but I had some idea even then that this was not a good woman for him to be with long-term, let alone marry. Unfortunately, my friend has very little game, and is the perfect illustration of Jack Donovan's distinction between what it means to be a good man and what it means to be good at being a man. He is a decent and honourable man, and when he gives his word, he keeps it. Thus, when he proposed marriage, he fully intended to follow through with it; and now that he is married, he fully intends to stay the course of that marriage.

He's been married a little over a year and I can already see major problems in the offing. This woman went to the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, then did a postgraduate degree at the LSE. To give you a sense of perspective on what this means, my friends and I had something of an in-joke about how all of the pretend Marxists went to the LSE to become investment bankers, while all of the real Marxists went to SOAS to smoke weed and talk dialectical materialism. The LSE has a way of taking the most starry-eyed idealists from the Left (who are not much of a threat at that point) and turning them into hardened, politically savvy, genuinely dangerous operatives of the Left's social agenda. That is exactly what happened in this case. Now, my friend's wife has plans to head back to her home in South America to setup social worker networks there, and is at every point putting herself first and her marriage second. My friend can only look on in bemusement; as he said to me, "I hope she comes back". My friend's  family does NOT approve of the marriage; his mother has essentially turned her back on them both, and I know how much this has hurt my old friend. And when I learned that his now-wife had been married and divorced before, and saw how she was the one wearing the pants in that relationship, I knew that this marriage would have a very high chance of failure.

My second friend presents a complete and total contrast to the first. When I met his fiancĂ©e in London for the first time a few weeks back, I knew almost immediately that he had found the right woman. She was quiet, pleasant, feminine, and easy-going. Their compatibility and chemistry was obvious, their "sex ranks" were basically equivalent, and they clearly were in the habit of discussing major life decisions with each other. Unlike the first friend, this one has had some experience with long-term relationships and knew exactly what he was looking for in a woman. When it came time for him to figure out what he was going to do with his career, he had offers from think tanks, consultancies, and universities and made his decision based on a sit-down conversation with her, ultimately deciding to move to Wales to take up a research post at a university. It is clear that he is the leader in that relationship and she is the follower, that they care deeply about each other (without being ridiculously demonstrative about it, thank Heaven), and that our mutual friends all approve wholeheartedly of this marriage. If I am any judge of character, their marriage should be a long and very happy one.

There are clear lessons to be learned by any man contemplating a LTR or marriage. Enter into a marriage quickly or without adequate understanding of yourself and your woman, and you put everything you have worked for at risk. The dangers of marrying in haste in a feminised society are truly staggering. You face the very real possibility that in a few years' time, you will be standing in a divorce court facing a judge who will proceed to metaphorically eviscerate you with the full force and authority of the law. You face the possibility of losing your wife, your children, your home, your earnings, your wealth, your retirement, and eventually, your sanity. Marriage these days is a genuine risk here in the West, and is becoming increasingly risky in the East as well.

This doesn't mean that marriage is necessarily wrong or a bad idea. Vox Day's take on marriage is very good, and I recommend reading it if you're contemplating the subject. He has also stated unequivocally that marriage requires sacrifice, and if you are unprepared to make those sacrifices you simply should not get married. Marriage and family are unequivocally Good Things- I say this coming from a very close-knit family, derived from parents who have been married for nearly 35 years and grandparents who were married for over 60 years. But do not think for one moment that a happy marriage "simply happens". It takes work, experience, and above all game.

Friday, 19 April 2013

The Way of the Sigma

The ever-excellent Prof. Ian Ironwood posted last week about the Wild Sigma:
Sigmas are a mystery by design, and in their immature form can resemble hapless Betas, misguided Gammas, or even a desperate Omega, for short periods of time.  That is because they don't come by social skills naturally, they usually have to observe and consciously integrate them.  Especially about sex.  The immature Sigma can stumble and flail wildly with this subject in his early years because he hasn't yet discovered a comprehensive set of instructions on how to properly dip his wick (i.e. Game), but the desire to do so is very much there. 

Hence the centaur.

The centaur represents the cthonic combination of the primal strength and majesty of the horse with the manual dexterity, intelligence and reason of a man.  In mythology, centaurs were either rapacious beasts or wise counselors, or some combination of the two.  That's a Sigma: incredible passion and incredible intellect.  In an immature Sigma, the Beast often rules, to disastrous result.  As the Sigma matures, however, he tames his passion with reason, intellect, skill and education, essentially harnessing the beast to his command.  A Sigma who develops self-mastery transforms from a clumsy, earnest, and often-misunderstood young man into a powerful and versatile mature man.  And that versatility is key.

Mature Sigmas can develop the ability of inserting themselves into any social situation and find the place where their skills and abilities will do the most good.  If there is no better leader available, a Sigma can display very strong Alpha characteristics.  If a more-natural leader is available, a Sigma is content to fade back and advise in Beta mode, rather than contend for leadership.  If there are leaders aplenty, then the Sigma will often step up as a mediator and negotiator.  And if things are running smoothly, a Sigma is often
content to accept a very minor role, but one which affords him an opportunity to still have subtle influence and a wide field of observation.
I happen to have more than a passing interest in this subject. When Vox came up with possibly his greatest contribution to the Manosphere, his Socio-Sexual Hierarchy, in which he elaborated upon his Sigma archetype, I emailed him about the subject and asked how a deep introvert (like him, and like me) might go about mastering the Way of the Sigma.

His response was quite interesting:
S asks about approaching:
I score even higher on introverted traits than you do, and you would know, as few others do, just how difficult interactions with other people can be as a result. It's not that I lack self-confidence or the ability to speak with other people, it's that I find small talk tiresome and frustrating. Small talk with women, in particular, can be infuriating in this regard- one can only take so much of listening to women in the office nattering on about "The Bachelor" before being tempted to end it all using the nearest sharp object. Yet, as you, and Roosh, and several others have pointed out, the ability to maintain a strong frame while generating an emotional, rather than logical, conversation, is critical to success with women.
This is an aspect of my life where I have fallen far short of my own expectations. I resolved some time ago to take corrective action, but reading theory only gets one so far.

So, here are my questions for you. How does a self-confident, bookish INTJ move past our natural dislike of other people? Given that bars, Starbucks coffee shops, and other loud environments are kryptonite to most INTJs and therefore to our game, what is the best place for an INTJ to start approaching in order to gain practice and experience? Given that INTJs, more than any other type, prefer living in our heads to living among people, how does an introvert get past the severe drain caused by social interaction in order to maintain a strong frame without having to do a lot of talking?
It's not necessary to spend much time with other people in public in order to meet all the women one could possibly require. The key is to maximize one's efforts while one has the energy to do so. The introvert doesn't have the time to wait for "the right moment", he will run out of steam nine times out of ten before it arrives.
I have always favored a direct approach. Simply make eye contact with whoever is of interest to you. If a pretty woman maintains eye contact and smiles, or better yet, looks down and smiles, immediately go and talk to her. There is no need to go into some sort of mad jongleur routine in an attempt to impress and entertain her, the fact that she has already indicated her interest in you should be sufficient. Have your conversational objective in mind as you approach her, and once you have achieved it, smile, nod, and leave at the first opportunity.
His full response was somewhat more derisory than this, so I recommend reading the whole thing before reading further into this post. All I can say is that, when I first read his response, I was rather taken aback by what seemed like a dismissive attitude towards a very simple question. Then I realised that, as with most things, Vox was of course correct. INTJs who fail with women, or who don't try at all, are at best Gammas on his SSH.

The value of Ian Ironwood's post is to show INTJs, like me, where the Gamma ends and the Sigma begins.

Sigmas are not, by any means, party animals. They prefer to be left alone as much as possible, quite often because they are devoted to the art of perfecting themselves in whatever end they decide to pursue. Indeed, the natural Sigma is at his absolute happiest when you LEAVE. HIM. THE. F***. ALONE. A true Sigma is often a puzzling paradox to those who can only see someone's exterior and are incapable of looking beyond it. Sigmas are socially reclusive, yet when the occasion calls for it they can be extremely charming. The fact is, though, that interacting with people is utterly exhausting for them. No Sigma that I've ever met- and I've only met a handful in my lifetime, since we don't exactly advertise ourselves openly- claims to enjoy being around other people. Indeed, most Sigmas have an open disdain and even dislike of other people, seeing them as annoyances at best and outright obstacles to the task at hand at worst.

So how, then does one go from being an INTJ Gamma to an INTJ Sigma? Simple. It starts with a relentless quest for self-improvement. INTJs are better equipped than any other type to identify our own weaknesses, and we are both ruthless and relentless in rectifying those mistakes. It is not for nothing that INTJs are called Masterminds; we are inveterate planners, tacticians, and strategists. To us, everything is variable, everything has its place in the natural order, every plan has to have at least three to back it up in case any one future state variable fails to go exactly according to plan.

To become a Sigma, you have to start with the premise that you are inadequate as you are. You have to identify your core strengths- and more importantly, your greatest weaknesses. Not confident speaking in public? Practise giving presentations until presenting in front of an audience is at best a mild discomfort. Not comfortable with the idea of being embarrassed in public? Take up a martial art, where if you can stomach being thrown to the floor by a girl half your size and with one third your musculature, you can stomach being embarrassed in public without real consequences. Not self-sufficient to the degree that you want to be? Learn how to drive stick, take up pistol shooting, learn how to hunt. Above all, adopt the mindset that everything has room for improvement.

I'm not going to pretend this is easy. It's not. A few years ago, I had a personal crisis of sorts when I realised that I had become stuck in a rut and my life needed some massive changes to get me out of it. I started down that path, got stuck for a while, and recently rediscovered my drive and ambition to make myself a better man. I'm not going to sit here and blow sunshine up your arse by saying that I've achieved everything I wanted, because I haven't. If I've achieved even a tenth of what I want to by the end of the year, I'll consider that a pretty decent track record.

The attitude of the Sigma is not far removed from that of the natural Alpha- massive, almost irrational self-confidence, derived from personal and professional success in every field in which the Sigma ventures. You can't get there with shortcuts, but you can get there if you work hard enough.

One final thought on the paradigm of the Sigma: don't make women your primary goal in life. Sure, having pussy on demand is great, no question. But that is not the be-all and end-all of a Sigma's existence, especially not an INTJ Sigma. INTJs exist to solve problems. It's what we were put on this Earth to do. It's what we're designed for, in a very literal sense. If you identify the problem areas in your life and begin addressing them, either in sequence or in parallel, and refuse to be intimidated or cowed by the challenges placed before you, then you will find the strength and the power needed to achieve Sigma dominance. Women and rewards will eventually follow, but you first must put in the hard work necessary to achieve those goals.

Further reading: