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Prohibition In The US: Women & Authoritarianism
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2Wycked Offline
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Prohibition In The US: Women & Authoritarianism
[Image: 1851-Road-to-Prohibition-21.gif]

Prohibition in the US was a curious period of time in American history, coinciding with the Roaring Twenties and was repealed a few years into the Great Depression. In this writeup, I will be reviewing the social forces that lead to Prohibition and the effect of the female vote. Then I will focus on the psychology of the movement and a discussion on authoritarianism. Note that the movement was world-wide and a part of progressivism. Also, note I am trying to not to be so wordy, so I am attempting to hack this down to as few words as possible. EDIT - didn't happen so, moving on. . .

Overview Of Social Forces Leading To Prohibition

From 1920 to 1933, federal law prohibited any production of any intoxicating liquor with an alcohol content of greater than 0.05%. For you nondrinkers out there, this is less concentration than Boone’s Farm, one of the weakest drinks out there. What this did, effectively, was put the kibosh on alcohol sales in the country, but did nothing to reduce drinking. In fact, drinking actually increased in the wake of the ban on production. Let’s review the social forces that forced the ban and what happened during the ban.

Anti-drinking sentiments always existed since the colonization of the country. Early puritans had placed bans on hard liquors – the high court in Massachusetts banned such liquors in 1657. However, the bans came and went. While there were always anti-drinking impulses – usually referred to as temperance movements – there were also strong pro-alcohol lobbies. Many Americans drank a lot of alcohol – in 1830 the average American household consumed 1.7 bottles of hard liquor weekly and that doesn’t include beer consumption.

[Image: Lips-that-touch-liquor.jpg]

The movement continued to grow in the 1800’s and was often part and parcel of the female suffrage movement. The Civil War disrupted the movement but quickly gained steam during the Reconstruction period. The movement was about as diverse as you could get – Christians, primitive women’s rights activists, Klansmen, doctors and many business leaders were in the movement. They movement reached a critical mass when women got the right to vote and it was all but certain that an Amendment would get passed. While the 19th Amendment wasn’t passed until after the 18th (Prohibition) understand most states allowed levels of suffrage for women. Some states, like California, already had full suffrage for women. Never hear about that in your history books, huh?

The Prohibition Era

Well, it did get ratified by the requisite number of states and became federal law in 1920. While this was a fascinating era of American history, I will gloss over it for brevity’s sake. Women’s group were boastful of the new muscle American women were exerting over society and men. However, as usual, women didn’t understand the body politic nor men. Prohibition did nothing to curb drinking – it actually made drinking problems worse. It destroyed the industry, disintegrated communities and left families starving. Crime increased quickly, as booze running and production became serious money-makers. Organized crime rose to the occasion and many famous mobsters emerged in this era. Violence increased and social discontent increased. It spawned a good amount of jurisprudence – there still is a section in the Federal Code for prohibition law and the related cases.

Also, the prohibition helped increase the policing force of the Federal Government. As usual, women demanded enforcement and that resulted in more police and state control over personal lives. The FBI became much more important during this era under J. Edgar Hoover. A special bureau was created to enforce the law. Understand how confused Constitutional law was at this point – the “Silver Platter Doctrine” existed. This meant state law enforcement could seize evidence in contravention with the Constitution and deliver it to Federal agents and it could be admissible in Federal Court. This doctrine resulted in many abuses of power by state law enforcement. Also consider the constellation of laws that were passed before and in reaction to Prohibition. Dry counties, limits on what alcohol can be served out of, limits on when you can purchase alcohol, etc. – most of those laws came from this era. Look up the liquor laws in your state or county – check the date - wouldn’t surprise me to see 1908 or 1924 as the ratification date of said law.

Briefly consider the flapper. This woman was considered scandalous and empowered. They were often seen at speakeasies (business that illegally sell alcohol) drinking and flirting with men. The cheap credit afforded by the newly created Federal Reserve, combined with increased urbanization and loosening sexual mores created this perfect storm for young women. Of course, the Great Depression forced them to do right and become wives and mothers, but understand for a period of time women were afforded a level of liberty they have never enjoyed in American history.

Prohibition was ended in 1933 with another Constitutional Amendment. The lead-up to this Amendment is the passage of the Cullen-Harrison Act, which legalized beer and wine at 3.2% alcohol content by volume. A few days later, Anheuser-Busch famously sent a team of Clydesdale horses to deliver a case of Budweiser to the White House. The legalization of alcohol sorely helped the economy by providing those factory jobs again to men. Crime lessened in the passage of the act, as gangsters couldn’t profit from dealing booze on the black market.

Understanding The Impetus For The Movement

Before we start to go through women and authoritarianism, let me step through Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder. While I consider myself a Christian of some stripe, there are real criticisms to be made of the religion, most especially viewed through the lens of this disorder. Nietzsche has made some good arguments about Christianity that reflect the reality of this disorder – but they are beyond the kin of this writeup. Understand, for the purposes here, that these people are really anti-social. In order to deal with their impulses for sex, drugs and rock & roll, they develop this disorder to paper over that.

The defining aspect of this disorder is the rigid, airtight adherence to the “rules,” whether they be a religious text, an ideology or the law of the land. They have no concept of “the spirit of the law.” They think their bad thoughts and impulses will go away if they mindlessly adhere to those codes of conduct. They tend to be very critical of others and other's behavior – they usually have a superiority complex visa vie others, thinking they don’t measure up to their goodness through obeying the rules. They tend to be people who very much think that laws or codes are deficient if the targeted behavior of the law isn’t curbed.

[Image: Women%20Pioneers%20Womens%20Rigts-7-15-1...0740174616]

Consider two prominent members of the Temperance Movement – Christians and women’s rights activists. Think about the stereotypical traits of both movements – highly critical, judgmental and an excessive need to emphasize people need to follow the rules. You see this in many arenas when feminists and Christians join hands in an effort to curb certain behaviors – like prostitution or pornography. Unable to handle their own impulses – whether they be sexual, drugs or just general debauchery – they make a life of making sure nobody else gets to indulge their anti-social tendencies.

Do note all of us have anti-social impulses – who doesn’t like sex or a strong drink? What the problem is when that crosses from moderation into addiction. Passive-aggressive disordered people know that if they started to indulge those impulses there would be no way for them to handle them in a mature manner. I have seen this first hand with some Christian women I know. One woman went full on bisexual, fucking anything in her purview that tingled her in the slightest. She drank and did drugs on a level I didn’t think humanely possible. Suddenly, the pendulum swung the other way when she suddenly got a boyfriend and was leading Bible studies on the regular. Notice what is happening here – she only has the ability to throw herself into the thick of things with no ability to moderate it. Either she the most hard-core Bible-thumping Christian or she is an intemperate drunk and sex addict.

Bringing back the focus to American women, understand women were looking for an identity outside of motherhood and wifehood. As usual, they were more interested in getting handed a social script they liked instead of trotting out and defining herself. That is a fundamental issue that will plague any society – women cannot reconcile their desire for conformity with their desire for independence. Their desire for conformity is of the first order, while the desire to self-actualization is of the second order. This is where much of a woman’s hamster dilemmas come from.

This is what drove the desire for Prohibition. They were unable to figure out why, on an individual level, why their husband preferred to get drunk with his friends and workmates after work instead of coming home to their wives and children. On a meta level they found many women shared the same issues. Instead of understanding how men are and how that affected their personal relationships they assumed the rules of society were deficient in order to create more obedient and loving husbands.

It is a way of avoiding real discussions about their life and their internal emotional state. That is why I rarely take seriously any woman wanting men to be honest about their feelings – what do women think is honest about their emotional expressions? It suggests a level of histrionic issues as they pretend to not have any bad or negative feelings or impulses.

Women fundamentally don’t understand men. That is what we saw with these early feminists. They sometimes complained about domestic violence, but that never took because it was not a serious issue. They were upset with their relationships with their husbands. They didn’t understand the drinking and the disinterest with home life. Part of that stemmed from crappy jobs that were soul-draining. Also, consider women in general – why should he want to come home to a woman? She needs to make him happy for that to happen. This inability to understand what men want from women is a primary impetus for feminism – all we need are new rules for what men should want from women. It is childish and foolish, but fuels the psyches of many women.

Women, Authoritarianism & Modern Relationships

What was implicit and lurking right underneath the surface in the previous section is authoritarianism. It is a form of narcissism and has serious roots in America. Christianity has strong overtones of this in liturgical approaches. Feminism does, as well. I recall reading an article about the decline of the Catholic Church in Italy. It noted that it was overwhelmingly populated with females. Part of the drive to female pastors is the fact that church is overpopulated with women. Women will always be near the heartbeat of any movement that has authoritarian impulses.

What does this mean? When we considered Passive-aggressive tendencies of women, let’s mix in narcissism. Unable to comprehend the impulses of others they just double down on strict enforcement of the rules. Recall that Prohibition resulted in increased levels of crime – once again, the inability to understand why people do the things they do.

Recall Jessica Valenti’s revolting piece in 2010 about shifting the burden of proof to the accused to prove he got consent for sex. That works on two levels – first, is it chills out most expressions of sexuality so she won’t have to come to terms with her own hypergamy. Second, is how vicious she is about the enforcement of the rules.

This is stereotypical of people with passive-aggressive tendencies – brutally oppressive enforcement of rules. This the way that they can express their anti-social tendencies – through cruelty and brutality. If you ever interact with these people, they will claim it is for your own good – no, it is for their own good because they need to treat others like shit. That is narcissism – others are just there for you to act out your complexes.

[Image: Orpana_One-Bill-Cartoon1-279x300.jpg]

That is what undergirds authoritarianism – a desire to dominate others via brutal levels of enforcement of rules. Unable to dominate others in their personal or dissatisfied with that they decide to cast a broader net over wider society. This causes people to whip out their pitchfork and form mobs.

Women’s herd mentality makes them especially susceptible to these sorts of movements. When women got the right to vote many savvy men noticed how women could become pawns in greater social movements. They knew how they didn’t want to hear about reality, but hear how it is somebody else’s fault for the problems in their life.

This authoritarianism is most applicable here to personal relationships between men and women. A common exhortation of women is for men to have new rules to frame their relationships with men. Of course, the men that play by these rules are unattractive to them – they are often betas. The rules are targeted at alphas – but I will limit my discussion to authoritarianism. In women’s world, if alphas followed the rules, their problems would go away. Ignoring why alphas are attractive to them, what this does is absolve women of accountability for their relationships.

There are exhortations for women to be more “open and expressive” - it is always framed through their need to shunt men through a framework that reinforces male adherence to female promulgated rules – always using their relationships with alphas as the touchstone.

The main issue here is it ignores personal psychology. Unable to come to grips with their inability or lack of desire to keep a man interested they project that inadequacy onto the socials scripts served to both men and women. You often see women avidly debating social conventions about dating and marriage – it is about them avoiding accountability for their decisions in their relationships. Appeals to authority – new social scripts – embodies their view of the world. They need to the play by rules and assume men do the same.

Of course, the most attractive men blaze their own path. Women idolize these men – if they can’t marry them they fuck them or try to emulate them. Unable to understand the reasons these men have for going their own way, they construct fantasies that have little or no basis in reality. This is where some visions of male privilege come from – unable to understand men they just assume the social script handed to them gave them that desire.

While many authoritarian impulses come from the desire to control the alpha, some of it comes from wanting to control the beta. Imagine being a woman who marries a clear beta male – what if he always comes drunk or late all the time? This is a supreme offense to the hamster, as she can’t even control an unattractive male. This might be where more virulent forms of feminism come from. Ban the liquor – he will have to be home with me. Of course, she won’t like that but she is more interested in asserting power over the beta male than the beta himself. That is when you get honeyed advances that will dry up once the beta submits.

In the end, understand the Prohibition was an absolute failure in America. It was fueled by many interest groups, but Christians and women were very important actors in the movement. Psychologically, it was fueled by negative psychology – the same psychology that prevents men and women from having good relationships.

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(This post was last modified: 06-06-2013 04:34 AM by 2Wycked.)
06-06-2013 03:57 AM
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DarkTriad Offline
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RE: Prohibition In The US: Women & Authoritarianism
How much of this applies to the modern drug-war culture?
06-06-2013 12:19 PM
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scorpion Offline
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RE: Prohibition In The US: Women & Authoritarianism
One of your best articles yet, in my opinion. Also:

Quote: While I consider myself a Christian of some stripe, there are real criticisms to be made of the religion, most especially viewed through the lens of this disorder. Nietzsche has made some good arguments about Christianity that reflect the reality of this disorder

I think this would make a great topic for a future article.

"For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” - Romans 8:18
06-06-2013 12:31 PM
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kbell Offline
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RE: Prohibition In The US: Women & Authoritarianism
[Image: Lips-that-touch-liquor.jpg]

Look at these woman! I think this is a case where a picture tells a 1000 words. Why would you want to kiss them or be anywhere near them? They look like mean old witches or what a feminist would look like if they didn't eat so much. They look like they ate sour candy.
(This post was last modified: 06-06-2013 10:48 PM by kbell.)
06-06-2013 10:46 PM
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