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Are American men being cucked by v-neck sweaters? One Dilbert cartoonist says yes

V-Neck Sweaters: The Revenge
V-Neck Sweaters: The Revenge?

Of all the obnoxious responses to my post last night on #Brexit, the most puzzling one came from former Honey Badger Brigader Rachel Edwards:

My first reaction? DonDraperSaysWhat.gif.

draper

I asked my Twitter followers if they had any idea what she was talking about. It turns out she was referring to a recent blog post by our dear old friend Scott “Yeah, the guy who does Dilbert” Adams in which Mr. Adams suggested that v-neck sweaters are “the uniform of a man who is owned by a woman.”

So Ms. Edwards was evidently trying to suggest that I’m so totally owned by women that I not only wear v-neck sweaters but … I really really like it. Which would be a rather weird insult even if I did own any v-neck sweaters. I mean, I’m not going to lie, I have owned v-neck sweaters before, but I’m pretty sure I got rid of them all in my last big clothes purge after realizing I hadn’t worn any of them in maybe 15 years.

But enough about my sweater preferences. The big question is: why on earth does Scott Adams think that v-neck sweaters are some kind of dire threat to American masculinity?

Let’s take a look at Adams’ blog post on the subject yesterday, titled (and I’m not making this up) “The Humiliation of the American Male in 2016.”

Perhaps the biggest unreported story of this presidential election is the humiliation of the American male. Unless I’m blinded by confirmation bias – which is entirely possible – it seems to me that the humiliation of American men is now institutionalized in the media.

His evidence? A TV commercial in which a henpecked husband gets sent back to the store after buying the wrong brand of dishwasher detergent.

[T]ake careful note of the American man’s v-neck sweater,” Adams writes. “That’s the uniform of a man who is owned by a woman.”

Dun-Dun-Woof!
Dun-Dun-Woof!

Adams continues:

You’re laughing because you know it’s true.

Wrong on both counts.

How many of the married men reading this blog have received those same sweaters as “gifts” from women? Personally, I’ve received about 25 over the years. None from men.

25 sweaters? Twenty. Five. Why … are women giving Scott Adams so many goddamn sweaters? Who are these women?

I received three of those sweaters so far this year. I throw them away. Nice try.

Note to self: Never buy anything for Scott Adams, ever.

Many of you can’t talk about this topic without being accused of sexism, losing your jobs, and being cast out of your social groups.

First they came for the sweater-talker-abouters …

But I can talk about it because I endorse Hillary Clinton for president. I did that for my personal safety, because I live in California, but still, I’m on the progressive side now. That gives me some extra freedom of speech.

This is a reference to Adams’ hi-larious fake endorsement for Hillary Clinton that was really an endorsement for Trump — who Adams thinks will win the election in a landslide by rallying a silent majority of men who are too afraid to talk about sweaters publicly.

The dishwasher soap commercial should give you a hint of how big that turnout might be. You might not notice the size of the coming tsunami because American men generally don’t voice their humiliation in public. …

But in the privacy of the polling booth, the men who don’t talk are free to act.

Take that, mean imaginary ladies who force men in v-neck sweaters to go back to the store to buy the correct soap!

You can criticize Donald Trump on many dimensions. You can say he’s not really a great businessman. You can say he’s offensive. You can say he lies. You can hate his position on issues. You can say he has insufficient policy details. And lots more. But I think we all agree that Melania never asks Donald to go back to the store because he’s too dumb to buy the right kind of soap on the first try.

I predict you will see the largest male turnout of any presidential election in American history. 

I’m not so sure, Scott. I can think of one thing that might derail the Trump Train: Photographic evidence of Donald Trump wearing the V-Neck Sweater of Male Humiliation.

But surely there can’t be such … oh, wait a minute. Literally 30 seconds of Googling produces this:

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Congratulations, Hillary, on your impending landslide victory!

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AbominableSnowPickle
AbominableSnowPickle
4 years ago

@Mish
Hi fellow long-time lurker! Thank you so much for your kind words! They help a lot this morning (moving is NOT fun, ack!). I got the ‘nym from a kids’ joke book! I actually can’t remember the set up, but the punchline was “the abominable snow pickle!” I was in the ER with a horrific kidney stone (12mm! I really know how to party. That one took surgery) and we’d been waiting a couple hours and so Mom was telling me jokes to take my mind off of things. It sounded funny, especially because I am widely known amongst friends and family for my hatred of pickles (something to do with cucumbers and pickling…they are eevil. But only to me. Other people are free to enjoy them, I just hate them^.^).

@msexceptiontotherule
It’s horrible, isn’t it? I try my best to remain optimistic, but the way things are going in the world and my own city and state, it’s really difficult to stave off the sadness.

I fucking hate people to think that my $733.xx a month is luxury living, my father and I are living carefully (he has a government pension and an annuity from investments, hella middle class!). I make so little, I’m unble to save any of it, but it wouldn’t matter much if I could, being on SSI I’m subject to the $2000 asset limit. It’s awful, and the worrying and stress regarding money and my future do very little for my health, mental and physical.

It’s horrible.

Carayak
Carayak
4 years ago

@msexceptiontotherule

Somebody told me this week that California is going to implement laws that allow Social Security recipients to save more than $2000. There is SOME good news in the world!

proudfootz
proudfootz
4 years ago

Someone probably already noticed this, but I am struck by the 25 V-necked sweaters from women.

How many sweaters does he get from men? How many pullovers versus cardigans? And are there any turtlenecks among these sweaters from male admirers?

Do people in California even do sweaters?

Paradoxical Intention - Resident Cheeseburger Slut

proudfootz | June 27, 2016 at 12:10 pm
Do people in California even do sweaters?

Native Californian here. I assume you’re talking about thick sweaters for warmth, yeah?

We do thick sweaters in my region from roughly late October to late February. Thinner sweaters can most likely be worn a little earlier/later.

I’m kind of situated in the middle of the state, so further north of me obviously does them more, and obviously south of me does them less.

I mean, we’re the only state that takes up as much of a coast as we do, so we are in the fortunate position of having several different climates and such.

Many sporty people consider it a benefit of living where I live that we’re roughly a two hour drive from the beach, the mountains, the desert, and the forest all at the same time.

proudfootz
proudfootz
4 years ago

I have an old friend who now lives in LA and likes to talk about the temperatures in winter for all his friends in Michigan to read while they’re eyeball deep in snow and ice. Me, I live in Oregon so it’s not so extreme.

I do like the West Coast for the combination of mountains, deserts, forests, and beaches within easy driving range.

bluecat
bluecat
4 years ago

My husband has been wearing short-sleeved v-necked garments he calls pullovers and I call weskits (he maintains weskits must have buttons) since he started primary school in 1949.

That is 11 years before I was born. So you’d have to blame his mother (but of course!) Except it was his school uniform, and she wasn’t on the school board.

I don’t really get it, as I can’t understand how come his arms don’t get cold. But I’m willing to buy him one if I can find one in a colour he likes.

What am I complicit in here?

(Edited to add: my, that Scott Adams is a real catch, isn’t he?)

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

@ bluecat

Over here ‘weskit’ is sort of old timey posh talk for a waistcoat; that’s the bit under your jacket in a three piece suit. What I think you may call a ‘vest’.

Obviously they have buttons, and the convention is to leave the bottom one unfastened (no idea why, but handy after a big meal)

(((Her Grace Phryne))): Tool of the Butt-Worshipping, Lesbian-Powered Elite
(((Her Grace Phryne))): Tool of the Butt-Worshipping, Lesbian-Powered Elite
4 years ago

From what I understand, any sort of semi-dressy non-heeled women’s shoe is called a flat, since they’re, well, flat, i.e. no heel.

msexceptiontotherule
msexceptiontotherule
4 years ago

@Carayak

The only thing that’s changed for SSI/SSDI and SS recipients is that Governor Brown signed a bill effective 2017 that says Medicaid/Medi-cal will now only recoup long term care expenses after 55+ from the estates of those beneficiaries as required by the federal government. The battle for allowing savings over the $2000 limit still continues, and likely will until there’s a federal change to that rule.

mrex
mrex
4 years ago

@PI

“he was rounding up the amount of money people spend on lattes significantly.

Yes, he assumed that people would get something to eat with the latte, hence the $5. And yes, he also rounded up an entire 47.9452 cents a day. (Math: 2000-1825 = 175, and 175/365 = 0.4794520548). Yes, I suppose it’s more honest to say that investing the $5.4794520548 dollars that normally goes towards lattes results in a cool sum of money down the line. However, it’s pretty stupid and unnecessary for his argument to be so specific.

“The article also points out that the kind of savings account with the interest you’d need to get that million dollars that was promised is only there for a few select upper class individuals, and they’d need to have an account started as a baby so they can actually collect on it and use it when they’re starting their own lives.”

Ok, I’m seriously side-eyeing you for this paragraph as it makes absolutely no sense. Are you trolling me?

The article said nothing about savings accounts. Bach’s advice was to invest the savings in stocks, which he gave a ridiculous annual return of 11% on. (Which your article rightly called him out on). As to your point, no-body, rich or not, gets anywhere close to 11% on “savings accounts” in this day and age. Hell, we just came out of a period of deflation, y’know?

Here’s what your article said;

“Other numbers were equally as suspect. A 10 or 11 percent average annual return on stock market investments? The Dow Jones Industrial Average showed a 9 percent average annual rate of return between 1929 and 2009. And that was a good, long-term, 80-year number, a period very few people besides a lucky trust fund baby who made it to an old age could hold on for”

.

So we get;

A. The stock market gives a 9% annual return, not 10 or 11%. She’s right to call him out, but she is probably overestimating herself here. Seven percent is probably a better number.

B. Only rich, spoiled, trust fund babies who don’t have to worry about unemployment, injuries, and other such setbacks can afford to consistently add and hold money in stocks forever. Another good point, but also ultimately pointless to the argument.

Look, I could continue to argue your points, but the fact is they literally don’t even matter. 1825 or 2000 a year, taxes or no taxes, it doesn’t matter! The latte factor isn’t even about lattes! It’s only an example given to show the amazing power of compounding, and to show how making small sacrifices now will pay dividends later. (Also, Bach specifically says that “latte” is a stand-in for any small, reoccurring, non-necessary expense). It is a silly example written for a gender that is systematically forced out of power and learning when it comes to finances. (And if you feel vaguely uncomfortable, it’s because yes, this conversation is very gendered. Bach writes financial books for women. Starbucks/lattes are gendered female.)

Here’s a fun statistic for you PI; one-third of the wealth inequality between classes can be explained by the financial-knowledge gap between the rich and the poor. [source] We could talk all day about raising the minimum wage, restructuring taxes, the high price of necessities, and etc, and it’s all important stuff. However, the fact remains that *nothing* will change until we stamp out financial illiteracy.

Did you know that most lottery winners end up bankrupt within 10 years? Giving someone who doesn’t understand something as basic as “compounding” more money just gives them more money to lose. And yes, most people fail even basic literacy tests.*

TL;DR Conservatives may be largely financial dimwits who bitch about poor people having refridgerators, (and how else are they supposed to cook?), but financial literacy matters PI.

@WWTH “On the latte rule thing, it’s a weird assumption that there are all these financially struggling people who buy expensive coffee shop items every day.

Ok, we’ve established that the latte rule isn’t literally about lattes, correct?

To answer your broader sentiment; all poor people waste money. Mostly because literally everyone has their particular money-waster/latte. But also a little bit because poverty, as a form of extreme stress, changes the way that the brain makes decisions to favor small short term rewards over larger long term ones. In other words, poor people have to work harder to overcome their emotional, irrational financial reasoning than rich people do.

As for a poor person who drinks daily expensive coffees- me. I fucking love coffees, and I drink them, not because I “deserve” them, but because I have planned out their costs and accounted for them elsewhere. The latte rule was never about having *no* luxuries.

@PI “Banks especially benefit from keeping poor people in debt.

Oh, I had a Bank of America account like that. The fees on my checking account were more than it cost to take a expensive as fuck taxi trip to the bank. I was too poor to pay the fees, so BOA closed the account on me. Best thing that ever happened. I opened a checking account at a credit union, and got a free checking account, an ATM card that I can use at any store, and the ability to draw fee-free from the ATMs in an extensive collective. Fuck you BOA.

Although, I don’t live in California either.

* Here’s the financial literacy test that 2/3 of Americans failed;

1. Suppose you had $100 in a savings account and the interest rate was 2% per year. After five years, how much do you think you would have in the account if you left the money to grow? A) More than $102. B) Exactly $102. C) Less than $102. D) Do not know/Refuse to answer.

2. Imagine that the interest rate on your savings account was 1% per year and inflation was 2% per year. After one year, how much would you be able to buy with the money in this account? A) More than today. B) Exactly the same. C) Less than today. D) Do not know/Refuse to answer.

3. Please tell me whether this statement is true or false: Buying a single company’s stock usually provides a safer return than a stock mutual fund.

Answers: 1.A, 2.C, 3.FALSE

Source- This link again.

Matt
Matt
4 years ago

You might not notice the size of the coming tsunami because American men generally don’t voice their humiliation in public. …

But in the privacy of the polling booth, the men who don’t talk are free to act.

Note to everyone: if you use the voting machine after Mr. Adams, he likely will have jizzed all over it. Make sure to wipe it down first.

YoullNeverGuess
YoullNeverGuess
4 years ago

Scott Adams just claimed credit for Brexit in his last blog post. No, really.

He cannot possibly think he’s that important, right? That’s a joke? Or more likely a “joke” that he actually believes?

But he cannot really believe it, right?

Viscaria
Viscaria
4 years ago

@YoullNeverGuess, just reading your comment was enough to give me an insta-headache. Who knows what reading his actual post will do!. My head might explode from the pressure.

Nikki the Bluth Wannabe
Nikki the Bluth Wannabe
4 years ago

@msexceptiontotherule

And the douchenozzle Adams is rude to just announce that he throws perfectly decent gifts he receives into the trash bin – has he ever considered maybe uh…I don’t know…TELLING PEOPLE WHAT TO BUY HIS UNGRATEFUL ASS if they’re planning on buying him a gift?

Exactly! Whenever my birthday or a gift-giving holiday (Christmas, plus my mom still does an Easter basket for me every year-I’m not huge on candy, so she gets the candies I do like and adds a few other smallish gifts-and since I’m single and not looking, my parents and I get each other little gifts for Valentine’s Day) comes around, I make a list of things I’d like to get and have the givers (mostly my family) pick out whatever item/items on the list they can easily find and afford; and if somebody gets me something I didn’t want, I thank them graciously and then pull them aside later for a private “this isn’t quite what I wanted-do you happen to have the receipt?” conversation. If Adams is as much a genius as he claims to be, how has he not thought of this?

@JoeB
I love zip-up hoodies-my favorites are an intentionally faded/distressed New York Giants hoodie and a red velour hoodie from Sears’ old Kardashian Kollection (please don’t judge me too harshly-they had some nice pieces), with the giant logo on the front done in gold glitter and tiny goldtone studs. No doubt Adams would consider me a thug (or would I be a thug-ette?) too.

@Paradoxy
I hate fake pockets (but I could also never really get into the cargo/carpenter pants that cleverforagirl, gelar, and Hambeast mentioned, which would be the polar opposite of fake pockets), and I’m another broke girl who enjoys the occasional Starbucks run.

@wwth
I love hearing about odd style conventions too, especially on the men’s side!

Mattie
Mattie
4 years ago

My dad says if you tuck your shirt in your pants need a belt???
Idk, I’m not a cis man, is the belt rule a thing?