October 7, 2012

"[M]en who had voted for the losing presidential candidate... suffered a big drop in their testosterone after hearing of his defeat."

Some study found, and Victoria Bassetti riffs on that finding in the opinion pages of The New York Times (under caricatures of high and low masculinity):
Is it possible voting makes male voters too vulnerable? Could the unpleasant feelings male voters experience when their candidates lose discourage them from revisiting the polls? No wonder they stop voting. It hurts too much....

Perhaps the pharmaceutical industry will come up with a little blue pill to make people voters. But until then, we may need to man up and face facts. For all our idealism about voting and democracy, we have created a needlessly complex and burdensome voting system. We can’t fix the hormonal fallout from voting, but biology provides another reason we should think about making voting simpler and easier.
Oh, boring. This turns into one more NYT article about how voter ID laws and such are bad. I'd like to see more on this topic of men's hormones and political decisionmaking. If there is this deep, physical need to be on the winning side, then those who want the men's votes need to work on the illusion that their candidate is likely to win. You know, skew the polls, get the media to pump up your guy, portray him as unbeatable, popular, etc.

But don't go too far. If you make men overconfident that your guy is a huge winner, and then there's a debate and he looks way different from what he was pumped up to look like, he's all deflated, and he seems tired and listless, and the other candidate stands up straight and delivers strong points, these men will have to switch sides to preserve their manhood.

Related: "Vote like your manhood depends on it... because it kinda does."

40 comments:

Quayle said...

Voting for the flaccid candidate will make you flaccid too.

Kirby Olson said...

I didn't think the left cared to be competitive. They should enjoy losing.

Astro said...

So it's possible that a vote for (Libertarian Party Candidate) Johnson will affect my johnson?

Ipso Fatso said...

Any male voting for Obama is by definition a eunuch.

Quayle said...

.I didn't think the left cared to be competitive.

Obama should be given a trophy just for participating.

Oh, wait! They already did that in Stockholm, and what a trophy it was.

Obama has another historic distinction: that of being the Nobel Peace Prize winner that has authorized the most bomb tonnage and number of hellfire strikes.

He's a man for the ages.

David said...

oh the sophistication.

And here's a hint.

It's not hard to vote.

Chuck said...

After reading the Sunday New York Times, I routinely feel emasculated that I paid six bucks for it.

MadisonMan said...

I wonder.

If you're not all that invested in the outcome, will it matter? I mean, I voted for Obama knowing it was the least worst option (as I defined it). I think my feeling had McCain won could be best summed up by the word Meh.

What if you're voting for a woman? Will the same thing happen?

Shouting Thomas said...

We have a "needlessly complex" system of voting?

I go to the poll, identify myself and vote.

I've never had a problem. Seemed pretty damned simple to me.

edutcher said...

Real men suck it up.

(Hatman told me that)

rcommal said...

OK, I just don't think I can bring myself to go read that. And I can bring myself to at least start to read almost anything, so that's saying something.

rcommal said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
edutcher said...

To put it in the latest metaphor, "It's Like Barack Obama At A Debate".

LakeLevel said...

This is probably a survival mechanism. If you get all testosterony after your side loses, your chances of being put to death go way up, present society excepted.

Skyler said...

I won't read the nyt but this sounds like a variation on the theme of doing the census by sampling. We should vote by opinion polls instead of actual balloting.

Aridog said...

If there is this deep, physical need to be on the winning side, then those who want the men's votes need to work on the illusion that their candidate is likely to win. You know, skew the polls, get the media to pump up your guy, portray him as unbeatable, popular, etc.

Really? Interesting.

(The *men* of MSNBC come to mind)

Actually, men who vote with this *bandwagon* mentality are not particularly masculine.

It's not about being on the winning side, it is about winning. Period. Even Obama will tell us that, he's not about being on any side...but he is all about winning, personally, by any means necessary.

YoungHegelian said...

Man, this guy must have voted for the losing candidate for every damn office in every damn election!

Nomennovum said...

"We have a "needlessly complex" system of voting?" -- Shouting Thomas

Yes we do. Haven't you heard? That's why all you will need to do to vote this November is be able to say these three words"

"Yo soy Americano."

wyo sis said...

A needlessly complex and burdensome voting system?
It's so much easier to vote in places like Venezuela, Iran and Korea. Boy wouldn't it be great to live there?

Ann Althouse said...

@YoungHegelian Thanks. I enjoyed that. Looked up his Wikipedia page: "Marian is an "endocrinological castrato" or "natural castrato".[ A natural castrato is a singer who never went through puberty and so kept his "unbroken" voice intact."

There are all kinds of people in the world. He is fortunate that his anomaly gave him a great ability. What if every medical problem came with an equivalent benefit?

Coketown said...

Ok. How long did it take for their testosterone levels to normalize? The detrimental effects of low testosterone are not realized until the condition has persisted for weeks. The most immediate effect is a lowered libido. Then things like fatigue set in. Then things like low bone density can result after several months.

I doubt any of these things are enough to create some sort of Pavlovian response to male voters. What a retarded suggestion. Is this writer's idea of male testosterone informed entirely by Austin Powers and his missing mojo? Holy shit. That was fiction, darling. Testosterone doesn't work like that in the real world--that is, in the world beyond the pages of the New York Times.

Ann is right: the fascinating aspect of this study--which should be confirmed by other studies before the press starts treating it like theory and postulating what its findings mean--is how hormones may influence decision making. Are those with heightened testosterone more susceptible to the bandwagon effect? Is the way to influence the male vote to create the impression that one candidate is the shoe-in? Does this explain the hilarious Democratic oversampling of recent polls? "See, men? He's ahead! He's going to win. You should be a part of that. If your guy loses, then you're wrong. And being wrong makes you less of a man."

I can see that working. But I also see another factor working: Real men don't want to vote for the first gay president. Obama is as close to a tranny as we've ever had in office. My ego may be bruised by voting for the other guy and losing, but if I vote for the effeminate nancy I might as well snip off my danglers right now.

Fin.

Aridog said...

Nomennovum ... Or Mimi ni american

ID? I'm white as bleach Irish and have always been asked to provide ID in order to vote. It'd be fun to see what happens if I claim I have no ID and still demand to vote.

Coketown said...

And really? Why does the NYTs and its drift* of op-ed writers treat every study as if it's theory? Like, "Ooh, uhhh, meehhh. This study just came out. Let us write about it as though it's established science. Let's write as though it needn't be tested or scrutinized, because it says exactly what we want it to say. And studies that say the opposite of what we want it to say we won't cover--because that's being pro-science."

Maybe we should wait for other studies to establish whether this phenomenon is even true before we start explaining its broader implications.

*drift is allegedly the collective noun for pigs.

veni vidi vici said...

"a needlessly complex and burdensome voting system"???

Sure, because checking off series of binary choices between "A" and "B" is too complicated for Americans.

What the hell is wrong with people who write, edit, condone, and tutt-tutt knowingly this quality of bullshit?

veni vidi vici said...

"a needlessly complex and burdensome voting system"???

Sure, because checking off series of binary choices between "A" and "B" is too complicated for Americans.

What the hell is wrong with people who write, edit, condone, and tutt-tutt knowingly this quality of bullshit?

campy said...

What happens if a man votes for a candidate who gets more votes, but the other guy steals it?

rhhardin said...

A testosterone drop can be combatted by going to a strip club, according to John Tierney.

Chip Ahoy said...

Who wrote the crossword? What is the theme? Did you close it?

Unknown said...

Men are voting for Romney, by a large majority. Maybe the reason we're having the decline in male testosterone in recent years is due to the election of Obama. Now, there's a thought. If we want to become a powerful nation again, with men filled to the brim with testosterone, vitality and entrepreneurial creativity, elect Romney!

Leo said...

Is this meant to be an argument against the 19th amendment?

Also is it a justification that should have been used in Bush v Gore?

Chip Ahoy said...

He is fortunate that his anomaly gave him a great ability.

Yes. And a family and a city/state political situation, and $ and an interest in that one channel otherwise you're just another guy with a high voice.

And I wonder about the people out there talent and real geniuses who don't have all those things at once.

Michael K said...

I doubt that male Obama voters need to worry about testosterone levels. They gave that up before the 2008 election.

Chip Ahoy said...

I use the quien es mas macho method of picking a candidate. Dunt everybody?

Rarely does the menos machos mas femenino canditado ever win anyway. Never that I know of.

kcom said...

"Maybe the reason we're having the decline in male testosterone in recent years is due to the election of Obama"

Mom jeans will do that to you every time.

Kirby Olson said...

Maybe people will hide that they ever liked Obama the way they hide that they once looked up to Tiger or OJ.

campy said...

Maybe people will hide that they ever liked Obama the way they hide that they once looked up to Tiger or OJ.

The Internet will always remember.

Richard Dolan said...

"Some study found ... If there is some deep, physical need ...."

At least it's an excuse for some goof-ball blogging. Pretty much all it's good for.

Meade said...

All I know is I voted for McCain in Nov. 2008 and, well, as far as that study goes... I'm what you might call an outlier.

A MAJOR outlier.

DADvocate said...

How could you make voting simpler? It's simpler than taking a shit already.

n.n said...

This insight is only relevant to men captured by the self-esteem without merit movement. Actually, it is relevant to all people, men and women, who were deceived by a dream for instant gratification. The so-called "experts" were wrong and they own the product of their "good intentions", which is a large subset of the population who suffer from sabotaged character development.