Saturday, 11 February 2012

Superior

The word 'superior' came up the other day.

It makes me feel uncomfortable. To me a D/s relationship is kind of like a nut and bolt. Is a bolt superior to a nut? One may be on top, one may be positive while the other is passive, but one is nothing without the other.

Superior can mean higher in rank without necessarily meaning 'better'. But generally it means 'better' and even though the girl who brought up the subject would like somebody who is better than her... I really don't want to have a 'superior' view of myself.

Yes, thats right! Another meaning of superior, as in 'having a superior attitude' or 'acting superior' - is somebody who has an over inflated opinion of them self.

...because you know it, people who think they are 'all that', usually aren't all that.

Darwin noticed this phenomenon, he said, "Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge". Bertrand Russell said, "One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"

And in 1999 a couple of fellas named David Dunning and Justin Kruger wrote a paper having studied it. The  phenomenon is now known as the Dunning-Kruger Effect.

In my words it goes something like this. Stupid or ignorant people are too stupid and ignorant to judge their own competence.  They fail to see their own incompetence and overestimate their abilities, underestimating the abilities of others. (To a lesser degree the reverse is also true that competent people underestimate their own abilities and overestimate the abilities of others.)

Anyway, here is a video which explains it better than I have:-


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I think this has a baring on this whole business of Dum-doms, as discussed by Swan,  Lurve, myself and many others. As mentioned at the end of the video, social feedback may or may not work -- but when nobody seems able to speak out or criticize, the incompetent are acting in a vacuum free of direct feedback. And yet as Swan mentioned, some of these people are the ones shouting the loudest... telling us all how it's done. It does of course apply to tops,  bottoms, subs and Dominants. But lets stick with Dum-doms for now.

There seems to be some interesting side effects of the Dunning-Kruger Effect, one of which is that because these people think they already have the skills they need, they are reluctant to learn more. They may also externalize, making excuses for their failures, because they will obviously fail.... hard.

Those that keep posting in group chat, over and over... most of us must look at them and think that they say nothing of interest, their profiles contain nothing of interest, and the fact that they keep on keeping on indicates they aren't finding that special somebody with this method. I was told that one guy who posts virtually every day in no less that 9 groups that I belong to, has posted virtually the same thing every day for about three years! I suspect that he has put more effort into ineffective marketing than he has into being a Dom during this time.

Now when you think of all the complete idiots you have run across, ask yourself, what Nationality were they?

Mostly American right? Well thats no surprise as there are a high percentage of Americans here abouts.
And Italians? I say in my profile I'm not interested in Italians, and I have seen at least three subs who say much the same, and I am reliably informed that in the gay BDSM scene Italian Doms are a running joke.

Actually, was I too quick to excuse the Americans? There are a lot of them, but there are large numbers of Germans too and I haven't had a problem with Germans ever. And there are a lot of British too, a lot of them are complete knobs, but that doesn't make them the Dum-doms we are talking about.

We all know there is a cultural element to this don't we? I can't be the only one who has noticed?

So what do studies into the Dunning-Kruger effect say about this? The initial tests were done in America, but when taken to Europe and Asia, the effect was much less pronounced. It seems that people from the U.S.A. are much more prone to the Dunning-Kruger effect than people from other cultures.

My own pet theory is that the American culture fosters this because it teaches that, 'Yes you can', 'Nobody is better than you', and encourages confidence, celebrates success and puts less importance on modesty.

So what the fuck happened to the Italians? Maybe it's because Italian males all seem to think they are god's gift? Like Americans, they believe their own hype. This isn't just a personal opinion of mine... parts of Italy are in real trouble due to depopulation, the reason being is that Italian men are so misogynistic,  so 1950s in their expectations of the family unit, that even Italian women aren't interested in them.

If I were to pick a third nation that produces Dum-doms, I would have a tough time choosing between Spain and Portugal -- where incidentally the words 'Machismo' and 'Bravado' originate. Which I believe is a clue. These words were once positive, but in this day and age the former is now very much associated with misogyny, and the later had come to mean pretense. Yet I think I'm right in saying that the afore mentioned countries place a high value on a rather dated concept of machismo.

Another interesting thing; I had a conversation not so long ago about American girls who I have know who told me they were victims of domestic violence. I mentioned to an American friend that there seems to be certain areas where it seemed almost normal. When I listed the States where these girls were from, he said, "Thats really no  surprise, you do realize you just drew a line straight across the bible belt?". So it's interesting that Italy, Spain and Portugal are among the most religious countries in Europe. This isn't directly related to the issue at hand, but it is interesting that the Dunning-Kruger Effect is probably most often mentioned in regard to educated people trying to discuss or debate matters of science, history or philosophy with those trying to promote a biblical world view.

In a previous post I put a video which essentially said that, 'God always agrees with you because your god is your ego'. There are interesting implications when you put the two theories together, thats an amplifying effect if ever there was one.

...not that I am blaming Dum-doms on religion. But it must be said... when you start looking at kinks and perversions that either cross the line of common decency by a running jump, or in some way evade sexual responsibility (i.e. rape fantasy) or act a surrogate for sex (i.e. vampireism), it is amazing how many of the people who are into it come from a religious background which is far from liberal.

I formed the theory that this is because religion draws a line at masturbation, which is a line pretty much everybody will cross. When you cross that line, and you face eternal damnation, where do you draw a new line? As the punishment can't actually get any worse, why bother? Why not keep chasing the thrill of offending god? And if as a bonus the act of depravity helps you overcome the guilt that religion lumbers you with... bring on the goat!