Scott Adams on Marriage

Introduction

One of my favorite blogs lately has been blog.dilbert.com. Adams is funny, he’s an ideas guy, and he uses systems instead of goals to set himself up for success. His system, with his blog, is to market his books with provocative explanations of persuasion from a hypnotism point of view, get feed back based on comments, and then repeat with further explanations that demonstrate his own rhetorical capacity by performing the very rhetorical techniques he is describing.

But that’s not all. His system gains a larger audience that he then uses to bounce more provocative ideas, but these ideas are seemingly meant to actually improve civilization. He’s written about gun safety, diet, and in this case marriage. In his book on failure he catalogs the dozens of big ideas he’s pursued until their death.

I highly recommend that you read his post on marriage: here.

To summarize:

Marriage is the worst thing that has ever happened to civilization. This is because:

  1. It leads to poverty.
  2. It leads to malnutrition.
  3. It leads to obesity (lack of exercise).
  4. It leads to terrorism(!).
  5. It leads to emotional fatigue.
  6. It’s bad for children in the context of schooling.
  7. It usually ends in divorce.

He close with this note:

The tell for cognitive dissonance in the comments and on Twitter will be the oversized anger followed by an insult of the author’s intelligence. People who object for real reasons will mention them. Also look for “Wow” and other dismissive responses without reasons.

My Thoughts

  1. Evidence that Scott would permit:
    1. Numerically, if marriage were pursued on a monogamous basis, terrorism would not be seen as a result.
    2. Marriage can work like a master mind, two people working together ot pursue the goals of the household that could range from the production of children, the lifting up of society around them, religious ends, the running of a beneficial business, etc.
    3. Many species are monogamous. If we are evolved, probably, by natural selection for this purpose, it may help us be happy and successful if done well.
    4. Promiscuity leads to a load of ills and is especially deleterious to women. Watch this video by Stefan Molyneaux. He has no religious agenda, he’s an atheist.
    5. The public school system is simply terrible. It is feasible that it simply cannot be repaired, even by a marriageless civilization.
    6. A promiscuous (marriage-less) society would likely lead to men checking out of fatherhood unless every child were tested for paternity. Men are far less likely to be interetested in raising a child whose paternity they are suspicious of. This is based on what we see in modern relationships.
  2. Evidence that Scott would not permit:
    1. The biblical ideal is happy monogamous marriage. Many people dispute this, but in the New Testament the one partner only exchange of sex and bonding into “one flesh” meaning one life, is clear. If we buy into the idea that revelation is progressive, then the New Testament ideal is normative.
    2. The natural law argument for marriage based on the final cause of human sexuality seems, to me, to be conclusive.

Conclusion

I think I’ve met Scott’s standards for avoiding cognitive dissonance.

I’m not sure what he thinks.

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