Weekly Roundup: The Legend Of Bangkok Joe Edition

I don’t know if now was the right time for Netflix to show The Serpent, a BBC miniseries about a fellow who preyed on Western tourists following the Indo-Asian “hippie trail” during the Seventies. Surely there are plenty of people in the States who are watching this and thinking, “Gosh, would I be willing to risk being drugged, tortured, and murdered just to get on an international flight right now? Yes, I would!” There’s also something profoundly depressing about seeing all these young people who were so eager to flee America and Europe during the Seventies. In retrospect it seems obvious that the era that started with Nixon and ended with George H.W. Bush was the last gasp of the economically and culturally significant West. I had the actual privilege of growing up in a society that valued children, (largely) despised pornography, and at least offered the pretense of a moral compass. We were mercifully free from: smartphones, the HTTP protocol, political street violence, electric cars, woke capital, Amazon, an additional 110 million “Americans” who don’t seem to have improved the country, and omnipresent jumbo mortgages. Our most serious national problem at the time was Ford’s Variable Venturi Carburetor; with the help of Ronald Reagan, the risen Christ, and the Lockheed Skunkworks, that was resolved in 1986 when the 302 went fuel-injected, causing the Soviet Union to inevitably collapse.

I’ve been to Thailand a few times but have always avoided Bangkok, not wanting to enjoy the company of, or suffer the perception of being, a farang — a Western man who is in Southeast Asia for the purpose of pursuing sex. While I’ve heard all the arguments for abandoning American women, in my heart of hearts I think that going overseas to meet girls is what they call “gamma behavior”. (As always, there’s an exception to the rule IMO, and the exception is a rough ellipse drawn around Scandinavia, Holland, and northern France.) The feminist argument against overseas dating and/or “mail order marriage” is that it often amounts to economic exploitation, and it is a compelling one. Should the same lens be applied to the overwhelming support expressed by Western women for a “refugee” stream composed mostly of young adult men? I will leave that as an exercise for the reader.

Not all “farangs” are contemptible, however. Let me tell you the story of the greatest farang I ever met: a man who deceived, cheated, manipulated, and just plain out-played the American corporate Moloch to live his life on his own terms and retire in the States at an age when most men are still facing thirty years of misery to come. This is the legend of Bangkok Joe, and it’s all true. I know, because I was there.

Six years ago, I was killing time working a tech gig for an insurance company during the day as I freelanced the letters off my IBM Model M keyboard in the evenings. One of their Vice Presidents had just given a speech to his people stating, rather amusingly, that “the outsourcing in this department stops with me”; he was Indian. At that point, every intelligent person in the building started calling recruiters. None of it bothered me, because I had a twelve-month gig and no expectation of renewal.

At some point a few years prior, this insurance company had decided to let a percentage of its employees work from home. Some of them were in the office two days a week; one of those people was my friend — let’s call her Jane. Others were permanent work-from-homes, and this included Joe, a mid-level engineer in server provisioning. In exchange for a mild pay cut, Joe was given permission to move anywhere in the country and work from home. Four times a year, the company would then fly him to the Columbus office for meetings. Joe chose Denver as his work from home location, explaining that he’d always wanted to live near the Rocky Mountains.

After two months after I took that gig, Joe flew in for one of his quarterly visits. I was a little taken aback at the delight expressed by Jane and her best friend — call her “Betty” — regarding Joe’s arrival. Jane and Betty explained that Joe’s visits were nonstop parties in which the three of them would get blackout drunk for multiple nights in a row. Would I join in? Nah, but I would go to lunch with them, and bring a Lamborghini, since I happened to be in possession of one.

Joe arrived in the office that morning and was revealed to be an exceptionally handsome, tan, and fit man in his late thirties, perhaps five foot ten. He was wearing an outrageous silk shirt under a close-cut Tom-Ford-style suit that shouted “Hong Kong” to my tailor’s eye. Oh, I thought, this fellow is a friend of Dorothy, that’s why the girls love him so much. I wanted to dislike him, but this was an impossible task. The man was clearly so happy to be alive that it was a bit infectious.

Our lunch stretched out to two hours and more, with the girls drinking themselves into an incautious, non-corporate state. There was some kind of inside joke between the three of them, something to do with Denver, which was mentioned again and again.

“Isn’t it hot in… Denver right now?”

“I bet you’re dreading that long flight back to… Denver.” Finally, with the gentle kindness that seemed stamped into his every gesture, Joe called a halt to the silliness.

“Listen,” he said, “you seem cool, so I’ll tell you this. Please don’t pass it along, it would cause me a lot of trouble.” Then he broke down the whole situation for me, and it went a little something like this:

Joe didn’t live in Denver. He had a presence in Denver, yes. Two presences, actually. The first was an apartment that he shared with various transient people, like flight attendants and whatnot. The second was a UNIX server in a rack north of the city. The purpose of the rack server was rather ingenious: it created the impression that he was connecting to the insurance company’s network from his home in Denver, when in fact Joe was connecting from his real home… in Bangkok.

Nearly eleven months out of the year, Joe lived in Thailand. He would connect via VPN to the Denver rack server, which would then connect to Columbus. The rack server also maintained a VOIP account for him: he would make phone calls from Bangkok that appeared to originate from a Denver exchange.

How had he gotten started in all of this? Well, in the beginning he really had wanted to move to Denver. Then he visited Bangkok and realized that he loved it. He was a smart man. There had to be a way to make it work. Thus the rack server and the electronic obfuscation.

The first few years had been uneventful. He took calls, participated in online chats, performed remote server work. When he needed to be in Columbus, he would fly to Denver from Bangkok on his own dime, then take the company-paid flight to Columbus. There was really only one problem: Bangkok was almost exactly opposite of Columbus, timezone-wise. So he had to be a night owl, working from 6pm Bangkok time to maybe 2am. It was fine. He loved it. And he could go out afterwards, donning an outrageous silk shirt and disappearing into the night as a wealthy and free-living farang.

Joe wasn’t gay. “We’re too fat for him,” Jane explained, the light six-pack outline of her abs visible beneath a crop top. Joe liked Asian women exclusively. He always had a girl in Bangkok. Maybe not always the same one.

The insurance company started to tighten its grip on work-from-home people, following the fad of the times. Jane was told she should be in the office three days a week, instead of two. Joe was told to come back to the office. He refused, and was told he’d never make Senior Engineer. This did not worry him. What did worry him: the new normal of Skype calls and meetings. How do you take a video call from Bangkok?

There was more work with the rack server, and then a brilliant idea: an American room. He set up a room in his home with American furniture, American paintings. No visible windows. A screen next to his primary screen informed him of Denver weather, Denver news. He installed a light to mimic the sun. His index finger was always ready to mute a conversation if something improbable happened around him: an argument in a foreign language, the sudden thump of noise from a nightclub next door.

He traded salary for vacation time, because he was starting to feel a wanderlust beyond Bangkok. He ranged to South America, Nepal, Europe. Always traveling on the cheap, of course. Because he had plans.

Joe might have had little love for Denver compared to Asia, but he could see what was happening there, particularly with regards to property values. His low-six-figure salary was not much affected by the demands of rent or food: American dollars are exceptionally powerful in Thailand, something I confirmed for myself a few years ago when I bought a brand-new guitar from a music shop in Hatyai for just under fifty bucks. Joe had money to burn. He spent it on property. He took out loans, bought houses one at a time, rented them out. If a house became unoccupied — well, he had all the float in his salary to cover it.

When I met Joe, I think he had four or five houses already. He was starting to spend more and more time in-country surrounding his Columbus visits, dealing with contractors and meeting tenants, that sort of thing. Which was useful, because our rather dim-witted boss was starting to suspect that something was rotten in the state of Colorado.

Maybe Jane or Betty had dropped one too many hints after one too many drinks. Maybe the VPN wasn’t quite as ironclad as he thought it was. But the jig looked like it might be up. I resolved to help him out. Whenever possible, I would insert him into a post-solution narrative: “Well, at that point I Skyped with Joe and we got that figured out.” If I heard the boss coming around a corner, I’d pick up my desk phone: “Yeah, Joe, I really appreciate you chipping in here. I gotta run, see ya.”

I couldn’t have told you exactly why I was so determined to protect Bangkok Joe and his innocent fraud. Maybe it was just this: After nearly two decades of watching companies break every rule, betray every trust, and endanger every bit of customer privacy in order to drink from the intoxicating fountain of Indian off-shoring, I found it morally repugnant that Joe could have lost his job for the simple offense of being offshore. Yes, his dual-VPN setup was a threat to our company’s security, but was it any more of a threat than letting people with fake CompSci Ph.Ds manipulate our data from Hyderabad every night while we slept?

Joe’s real crime, if you could call it that, was simple. He’d gone overseas and kept the savings for himself, rather than letting the company send his job overseas and apportion the savings to itself. The hundred thousand dollars’ worth of salary that separated him from some Accenture halfwit went to his rental homes, instead of funding various Woke Capital initiatives designed to express our insurance company’s contempt for its actual customers. Our employer intended to steal from its shareholders to worship the new golden calf of corporate activism, but Joe had gotten there first and taken just a bit for his own purposes.

In 2017, I left the insurance company and went to a bank. I missed Joe. When I heard he was coming into town, I met him out with Jane and Betty for a rather expensive evening. He told me that he was spending more and more time in Denver, looking after his little real estate empire. The rest of time, he was traveling for real, around the world. He had a variety of strategies to keep his employer from knowing this. It was impossible to say how effective they were.

We asked the bartender to take a picture. I look shambolic next to him in his silk shirt and narrow waist, a couple of beautiful women between us, me a perpetual housecat and Joe a sort of sleek human panther, eyes bright and always looking for what comes next. That was the last time I saw him.

Their insurance company decided to go full Bangalore right before COVID hit. Jane was let go, finding a home at a funky tech startup. Betty got a bit of plastic surgery, becoming so visually perfect that her bosses found a job for her outside of tech. Joe had the most seniority, so the company offered him an option: Come into the office full-time, or leave with a buyout. He took the cash. Which he didn’t need, because the rents in Denver had gone through the roof. He’d built millions of dollars in equity, had tens of thousands of dollars in difference between rental income and his expenses. So he retired to become a full-time landlord.

This, then, is the Legend Of Bangkok Joe, a man who turned a mind-numbing tech job at a sleepy insurance company into a multi-million-dollar real estate empire, all while living an intensely sybaritic and dissolute life in Asia’s most depraved city. A character straight out of ancient folklore, the Trickster who took all the tools the corporate Uniparty uses to drain the life out of us — omnipresent tech, “remote work”, insane urban real-estate pricing, a total human disconnection between the officers of a corporation and the human sheep they shear — and used them against the Beast to his own purpose. He said No! to American women, American dreams, the American lifestyle of running on a treadmill against the Joneses. He traveled the world in secret, amusing himself with no master to whom he must answer.

Every story has a lesson, implicit or explicit, so what’s the lesson of this one? I think it has to be about the power, the value, the almost-necessity of turning away from what the System offers. Find out what they want you to say, or do, or believe; then indulge yourself in the opposite. You know what the modern gospel is. It is all around you. There is power in a secret rejection of its tenets, in a private decision to bleed the beast for your own benefit, in a solitary determination to read the Bible or lift weights or start a nuclear family.

Every time you read Epictetus in an airport instead of listening to the blathering of CNN or the siren song of social media, every time you help a neighbor, every moment you spend with your children instead of your corporation — well, in those moments you’re honoring Bangkok Joe. More importantly, you’re honoring yourself. They cannot touch Bangkok Joe any longer. As for the rest of us, I’m reminded of the sign that supposedly stood above the spaceport at Arrakis, but was in fact carved into an Afghani stone during the time of Shamyl and the Tsar:

O you who know what we suffer here, do not forget us in your prayers!

* * *

For Hagerty, I wrote about soaring Miata values and an alt-universe Escalade.

65 Replies to “Weekly Roundup: The Legend Of Bangkok Joe Edition”

  1. John C.

    I really enjoyed the Bangkok Joe story. Evocative of those old tales of British adventurers going East of Suez trying to hit it big and have fun trying. They used to call them nabobs. Interesting that his investing was in Denver rather than Bangkok. I would have been sure that the Asian tiger would have had the faster growth rate. Perhaps as a country that has mostly avoided foreign domination, Siam is careful about what they let the nabobs own. Good advice for us all.

    • Benjohnson

      As an American, owning property in Thailand is pretty hard – you have to setup a shell corporation (that’s a bit hard to protect from the locals) and nobody wants to give you a loan.

      • John C.

        There is also the true story of Sir James Brooke, who became the “White Rajah” of Sarawak, after he was given personal title to the oil rich land by the Sultan of Brunei. Sarawak is now part of Malaysia. The last white Brooke line Queen, Sylvia, last on the throne in 1946, wrote a book in her old age called “Sylvia, Queen of the Headhunters”

  2. LynnG

    Concur, great story… most everyone on this board most likely knows, 80% of your career is just showing up… and if you can accomplish your outputs in that remaining 20% then why can it not be done from Bankok, Denver, Canton, or whereever. As I told our Deputy Director so many times, I can do what I do from the beach in Dayton, Darien can do all his good work from a 15th tee on Hilton Head, and Tamara could do her work for the clents just as well from Belfast as from HQ. However, as he always responded, “Yes I know that, but if I let you all work from whereever you wanted to, I would not have anyone to talk to.” So goes the idea of keeping people in the office…. well until the COVID turned the workplace upside down…. So good for Bankok Joe…. and Ohio Jack….
    PS: your rollmodel Ms. Michele Peluso is now with CVS, working on your health care…. 🙂 🙂

  3. Arbuckle

    “n my heart of hearts I think that going overseas to meet girls is what they call ‘gamma behavior’.”

    What does “gamma behavior” consist of? The internet definition was a bit ambiguous.

  4. Ryan

    Excuse the ignorance, but do people seriously rent watches? I guess that’s the natural progression of being “sponsored” by a reseller, but the concept of renting jewelry sounds idiotic.

    I’ve ignored 98% of auto media for the better part of two years, so I’m behind the times. Everyone was shilling “bespoke” coffee beans when I decided I no longer cared about what they had to say.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      There was a rash of autojourno interest in watches about five years back, largely sparked by my brother evangelizing to a few people who then decided to make it a hobby of their own.

      Some of these people have become shills for watch rental companies.

      It’s not what you would call respectable.

        • Jack Baruth Post author

          That Pulvirent dude or whatever his name is at Hodinkee is like the COOMER stereotype personified.

          • Ronnie Schreiber

            Have you seen any of the Watchfinder & Co. videos? The guy seems to know his cars as well as his watches.

          • Jack Baruth Post author

            At the risk of sounding like a bitter old man, the answer to any question that is phrased in the format “have you seem the X videos” will always be “No”.

  5. Disinterested-Observer

    I need to get in on that C4 action. The new Hagerty site looks fascinating (to me). Are the auctions mostly public or dealer only?

    • John C.

      Jack’s article, and a very similar one in this month’s print C/D by Annie White, were about 90s cars. Obviously C4s got faster as they went along. I wonder how the early 1984 C4 are doing as historical cars. The Knight Rider dash, the ultra hard Z-51 suspension showing off the new fat Gatorback tires, the almost harsh 80s wedge shape and even the slightly insane twin Crossfire injection playing British SUs on a small block seem darn interesting all these years later.
      I think so many of those 90s Japanese models are still getting bought to soup up and destroy in street racing in the style of Hulk Hogan’s charming son. That would seem to indicate a bubble. Hulk will only lay out so much for his nothing son. Notice you are not seeing resto businesses yet to return the Japanese to original. When you do, that will be a sign of staying power.

        • John C.

          The Miata is sort of a special case as it has always had the MG/Triumph playbook to follow. The weekend gentleman, or in Jack’s wife case, gentlelady racing only enhance the mystique as with MG before it. Going the British Motor Heritage route is reassuring. The earlier 240Z rebuilds turned out just a PR stunt.

          I was sorry the link up with Fiat with this generation was such a failure. Both because I though it was great for Fiat to have a new 124 for their self worth, and how much I LOVE the look of the Miata RC Targa coupe with the Italian style flying buttresses. Many of the old British crocks had Italian touches and it kind of said Mazda is in the club instead of just sad rip-offs from fakers like the early days.

          • Jack Baruth Post author

            You’ve just given me this week’s column, but the 124 Spider is now one of history’s great neglected cars. It was basically an ND Miata with more power stock (and MUCH more power aftermarket) and the better transmission from the NC Miata. It had a nicer interior. It was built in Japan so the only quality worries would have been the engine, which was pretty well proven.

          • John C.

            The turbo multi-air engine was probably a mistake. The turbo in stock form pulls the power curve down to Sunday old man drive style. With what a big deal the Fiat Twin Cam was in the 1970s, that may have turned off the old man they were trying to attract and who remember what a 124 was. The old ones do not seem as everlasting as TR6/MGB/Alfa. The Bayless guy eventually retired.

            They were probably trying to create a different personality than the Miata and did not want a brother by another mother horsepower race. I believe Skyactive does more for engine compression that multi-air so it would have been a losing battle anyway.

            I look forward to your column, You have a lot of passion for the Miata and it is one area where the Hagerty customer agrees.

      • Eric H

        My former boss bought a 84 C4 Vette new. When I worked for him in the late 80’s we would often drive it to go get lunch.
        That car was the biggest POS I’ve ever been in.
        The dash had been replaced three times under warranty and after the fourth failed they refused to replace it. It squeaked, rattled, and clunked over every bump. Fisher Price would have made a higher quality interior. All in all, a terrible car.
        Did he get a lemon? Yes, but I don’t think it was different than any other that rolled off the assembly line.

  6. Newbie Jeff

    “In retrospect it seems obvious that the era that started with Nixon and ended with George H.W. Bush was the last gasp of the economically and culturally significant West”

    I think this should be clarified. The West, and the US, remain economically and culturally significant… just for the wrong reasons. The “Nixon to Bush-41” era was the last time our significance was a positive export. Then, we offered a clearly positive alternative to the USSR in the Cold War, we were the “good guys”… we bore the Tech Boom without the accompanying Orwellian social control… even our Middle Eastern “adventures” were clear (if not long term) successes.

    Now our economic and cultural significance are negative exports, basically a global cautionary tale for anyone smart enough to pay attention. Our foreign policy has been so disastrous that it alternates between wildly counterproductive to isolationist for the sake of self-preservation, often within an election cycle or two. The ceaseless “migrant crises” of the US and Europe have become real-time experiments for any society considering this form of self-destruction. Culturally the US is exporting radical left-wing ideology – “Wokeness” – that has become a cancer most remaining functional societies aptly identify as existential threats, lest it plunge their cities and government into anarchy, too.

    • John C.

      You think about all those terrible suggestions we were giving Eastern Europe and Yeltsin era Russia. Let your people go cold turkey off the old system while that system’s wealth is transferred to a tiny oligarchy, or left to rot. It is no wonder our stock of credibility dropped so. Notice better leaders like Orban and yes Putin only came later and were selected internally without the need for contrived color revolutions.

  7. hank chinaski

    It will be interesting to see how the Corpo math shakes out after Covid regarding onsite v. remote. They’ve probably gotten accustomed to cutting office space costs plus turning the me-too risk down to near zero, but then HR will need actual people to browbeat over DIE and Covid Passports. Schwab and Oracle, taking a lesson from northeast pensioners, are moving to TX, with a thinly veiled side effect of moving electoral needles. Some of the new ‘Joes’ are taking up in Puerto Rico for the tax angle, if you can make the incidentals work.

    Speaking to Miata v. Vette, didn’t that 30AE take the place of Farrah’s?

    It’s marginally less antisocial to run an NA (a 1.6 especially) near its limits on the street commuting to work, daily, for years. Or so I’ve heard. You will take shit from your ‘bros’, though.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      Oh gosh, that Vette. That was an experience. As we got it, it was slower and worse to drive than a stock Corvette. I put ten grand in it so we could win SCCA Targa Southland, but it never lived up to the original expectations. I adore Matt and I don’t blame him; I blame the “tuners” who took advantage of a rich kid. The seats, for example, were only bolted in up front, because his installer didn’t want to bother with the extra time required to bolt them in everywhere.

  8. bluebarchetta

    I own a #3 condition 1991 Miata in Mariner Blue. It runs great and looks new from 10 feet away, but up close you can see the small dings it has acquired from being a fair-weather daily driver for 30 years and 134k miles. I took it to the Powell Culver’s to meet a buddy for lunch and a strange thing happened: it got attention. Two carloads of HS kids (one group in a GTI, the other in an Audi A4) paused on their way into look it over and talk about it. A 10-year-old boy circled it slowly, looking at it from every angle. A toddler put his greasy hands on the nose and his mom took a picture of him with the car on her phone. He left little monkey-paw prints on my car, but I was so happy to see automotive enthusiasm from young people that I forgot to be mad.

    When did the NA Miata go from being a semi-invisible toy for car geeks to something that actually gets attention? Is it actually going to be worth money someday soon, or will the high mileage mean it will always be worth ~$4000?

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      If you’re in Powell, drive through the Liberty/Jewett roundabout and observe the sad little yellow NA that hasn’t moved in a decade…

  9. Anon

    Great story about Bangkok Joe. I do question the lesson you’ve drawn from it though.

    Bangkok Joe scammed a company to live a life full of debauchery abroad. He’s likeable, because he’s ripping off a deserving enemy (greedy corporation). But he didn’t appear to live an upstanding family life.

    I don’t see how choosing to live a decent life is akin to “bleeding the beast.” You can choose that life while accepting soul crushing work or sucking off corporations. While you’ll likely be happier for not paying attention to the news 24/7 and focusing on family instead, these choices have little to do with making enormous amounts of money while sleeping around Bangkok.

    We can say that living a life with a nuclear family while disconnecting from the media isn’t what elites want us to do – maybe, but I think they care more about people being obedient worker bees more than anything else.

    • Compaq Deskpro

      Not sure how its a scam, Jack never said Joe didn’t do the job he was paid to do, he even showed up when asked.

      I do agree that he took his profits and fed a different beast. Bangkok is not what we want our society to look like.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      As far as I can tell, what “they” want is to create Brazil: a tiny white/Jewish elite with intact families and untouchable generational wealth ruling over an undifferentiated favela mass that “owns nothing, and is happy”. So in that respect, both Bangkok Joe and the “quiverfull” people are bucking the system.

      • Anon

        Bangkok Joe hardly bucks the system by that definition, because he ascended to become someone with generational wealth, though he did it by cleverly outwitting the elites. So it’s respectable.

        My main point of disagreement is your notion that practicing “family values” so-to-speak bucks the system, and I don’t feel that you’ve properly supported or defended this point. It came almost out of left field at the end of your article about Bangkok Joe.

        I think that people can be Christians and try to live family-oriented lives while being part of the “unwashed masses.” Keep in mind that’s how the feudalistic west ran, more or less. People had families, were Godly, had communities, yet owned nothing. I understand why you feel this way of life is under fire through the culture war, and the destruction of all decent jobs for American laborers. It makes this way of life harder as it makes all ways of life harder. It does not make this way of life unique somehow as if it operates outside the system or takes advantage of the system for its own gain.

        I think a more apt set of lessons from Bangkok Joe would be to help your fellow workers out. Don’t be a rat, (including the left’s nasty habit of trying to get people fired for wrongthink). Extract as much value out of your job as you can. Unless you think your company would sacrifice to keep you around, don’t hesitate to leave for better opportunities. Loyalty is earned after all. Maybe this sounds shitty, but most companies in America wouldn’t hesitate to lay anybody off to save a buck. Why should we be expected to prostrate ourselves for them when we know we’re one economic downturn away from the breadlines? This kind of thinking seems more in line with bucking the system or “bleeding the beast” than being a good neighbor and going to church on Sundays.

        • Jack Baruth Post author

          Agreed that I didn’t support it in any detail, and that it was a tossed-in assertion, what we call a “hand wave” in tech.

          You write: ” Keep in mind that’s how the feudalistic west ran, more or less. People had families, were Godly, had communities, yet owned nothing. I understand why you feel this way of life is under fire through the culture war, and the destruction of all decent jobs for American laborers. It makes this way of life harder as it makes all ways of life harder. It does not make this way of life unique somehow as if it operates outside the system or takes advantage of the system for its own gain.”

          Perhaps I should state it more openly: the Uniparty envisions that life for “people of color”, who will be the worker bees of the new feudal America. For “white” Americans, which is to say European-Americans, they envision the men mostly going incel/suicide and the women mostly going interracial marriage with the new Americans. This isn’t racist fearmongering on my part, it’s directly from mainstream media:




          There’s some depressing but sound economic logic around this. It’s expensive to raise children, both for parents and for the State. So the cheapest thing to do is to discourage childbearing among legacy Americans while encouraging unfettered immigration of work-ready young men. Anything you do to counteract that is, by definition, revolutionary.

          • Anon

            I think I understand your viewpoint and where you’re coming from. As a normal white dude, I have felt a fair amount of pressure placed on me by the elite class and social justice initiatives, though I’m not certain I agree with your implication. It feels like some grand conspiracy when it’s more likely a confluence mostly random actors pursuing what they think is the most important thing. “Don’t assume malice when incompetence is a possibility” and what not.

            Corporations seek maximum profits, destroying job opportunities and tailor advertising to the groups that will make them the most money. Social justice academics seek “justice,” and American justice is punitive. These combine to make an environment that is normally hostile to working people particularly hostile to white men. The middle aged men being at the highest rate of suicide is pretty depressing but damn if it doesn’t make sense.

            I do feel an element of it might be playing out in my life though. My lady and I are a young couple. We’re happy, we do okay, but we don’t make much money, can’t afford to buy property and don’t know that we ever will be able to as property values keep skyrocketing relative to wages. The lack of stability in employment, housing, and finances (even though we live beneath our meager means), makes starting a family feel impossible. I know others who feel this way.

            I think people will tend to raise families and have stable lives if given the opportunity so my preferred solution to this is to balance the power in America back towards working people. Do some trust-busting, empower and reform unions so they’re more useful and less corruptible, and ensure everyone who works a full time job at least has enough to raise a family. I know this is socialist or whatever but I think a candidate who ran on left economic policies and moderate-right social values would carry the day. Even most minority Americans aren’t as socially liberal as Democrats and academics imagine them to be. Trump could have been this, but ultimately governed as a normal Republican with a bad mouth.

          • Jack Baruth Post author

            You’re right — and there’s nothing necessarily “socialist” about unions, that’s one of the ways that the power balance between different groups of people is remedied.

            The shift in American thinking — and I saw an episode of “The West Wing” the other night that states this explicitly — is that we need to privilege the consumer over the worker. Everything in 2021, from Amazon piss breaks to Doordash, makes that explicit. But it’s no way to run a society.

      • Ronnie Schreiber

        Based on intermarriage and affiliation rates, the Jewish part of that cohort isn’t likely to be very Jewish in a couple of generations. It’s more important to them to have kids who get in to the Ivy League than to have Jewish grandchildren.

        • Ice Age

          A couple of generations?

          Remember, this particular group of Jews ALREADY isn’t the one that takes Mosiac Law seriously or knows the Talmud and the Torah cover to cover. They’re only Jewish as far as it gets them business contacts and shields them from any criticism about, shall we say, “culturally-specific” behaviors.

  10. Compaq Deskpro

    I strongly disagree with this. I need the office. I can’t listen to music while working as I will either sit still listening to the music while staring at my task, or I will struggle to do the task while trying futilely to ignore the music. Rap music is even worse, there is no way anything productive will get done while I’m listening to tales of Eminem and Dr. Dre’s arsonist mischief or DMX and Jadakiss holding the block down atop GSXR-1000’s. In a foreign country with hookers around the price of a flip phone? I don’t even have the capacity to imagine such a thing. I am grateful I have an old school do it all hands on non-engineering IT job where I am an “essential personnel” while every one else kicked and screamed from their hammocks.

      • Eric H

        Don’t limit yourself to rap. Sturgeon’s law is still the best guide, especially with all the content being created today.

  11. Rick T.

    Once the corporate overlords are comfortable that your work can be reliably done by you from your kitchen table, they will start working on getting some unspecified Asian reliably doing your work from his kitchen table. Bet on it.

  12. silentsod

    I can’t believe you would partially dox BAP like this.

    In all seriousness, more power to people like Joe.

  13. Dan

    On mail order brides, as distinct from touring for affordable prostitutes, keep in mind that we aren’t all rich, published race car drivers with rare guitar collections that we can actually play. From rungs below yours the ratio of thirsty bachelors to American women that aren’t ruined yet is daunting. The number that are ruined is in no small part thanks to men like you (or at least like your literary alter ego) plowing through twenty years of them before getting old and settling down. So don’t look down too hard.

    • Jack Baruth Post author

      I suppose it depends on the people involved. One of the nicest dudes I know has a mail order bride. They adore each other and I can’t imagine them with anyone else. On the other hand, one of the worst and weakest men I’ve ever met has a mail order bride who appears to kinda sorta despise him but relies on him for her job and citizenship.

      If I were broke and shy in addition to being ugly and squeaky-voiced I think I would probably go to church to meet girls before I’d look overseas, but the God thing is not for everyone.

      There’s also the sad fact that some major percentage of American women no longer hold what we call American values. So yeah I’m not looking down here, just speaking my mind.

      • One Leg at a Time

        From those two data points, it sounds like Mail-order marriages have the same possibilities as non-mail-order marriages. My (limited) experience is pretty similar.

        On the other hand, I knew a lot of guys who had married women from Southeast Asia (US Navy – West Coast), and the vast majority of those couples seemed completely devoted to each other.

        @Dan’s comment makes me sad – both for the potential for loneliness, and for the perception of “ruined” people; but it leads me to an interesting point. The “mail order” concept is definitely frowned upon by our “betters”, but why?

        I can’t imagine that the ‘they’ are particularly worried about the potential for an unhappy marriage – is it rather that it could possibly create happy ones? Normal nuclear families, where people genuinely like and pay attention each other?

        • Jack Baruth Post author

          “The “mail order” concept is definitely frowned upon by our “betters”, but why?”

          Same reason unlimited immigration of 25-year-old men is now mandatory Uniparty policy and endorsed by everyone from small-town mayoral candidates to soap companies: supply and demand.

          Mail-order brides (and serviceman marriages overseas) reduce the number of wage-earning men who are willing to date American women.

          Unlimited immigration provides, as “Great Books For Men” once said, “da tinglez” for older women.

          Our devolution into an 80/20 society has had all sorts of pernicious effects; this is one of them.

          Some wag on the alt-right sites said that if the primary demographic for illegal immigration was “21 year old Russian woman” instead of “30 year old Mexican man” then Homeland Security would have access to nuclear weapons.

          I’m not going to go as far as Vox Day and say “they want you dead”, but if you’re a white man who is not in the top quartile of sex appeal, the Uniparty would prefer that you have zero opportunities to reproduce and have a family. The most they’ll offer you is a chance to “step up” and take care of another, more handsome/Chad-ish fellow’s kids and his 35-year-old ex-girlfriend.

          The media is in service of this. Interracial couples are on TV at a rate many times their real-world presence, but the PoC involved is always the man and the white person is always the woman.

          This won’t lead to any problems, so there’s no need to worry. What harm could come from sentencing one of the highest-IQ and highest-propensity-for-violence cohorts in the world — namely, white American men — to a life of celibacy and humiliation? There’s no way they’ll do anything to strike back at society, Right?

          • Will

            Dating American women sucks, I exclusively go for foreigners (including Mexican Fresas) over American women, too much of a pain in the ass. Also, why was 1 comment of mine moderated and deleted?

          • viper32cm

            . . . I think I would probably go to church to meet girls . . . .

            Agreed 100%. In a properly functioning church it’s definitely the antidote for the hellscape of modern dating. Saved my life in more ways than one after years of striking out in the secular world or being forced to deal with needlessly crazy, entitled women.

            Speaking of church, Vox Day links to this minister on occasion, and his content is superb. He posted this article on incels and the western dating scene a while back that is very spot on: https://younggospelminister.blogspot.com/2020/09/the-danger-of-incel-is-really-danger-of.html?m=1.

          • Ice Age

            I read an article last week describing how China’s current expansionism is, in large part, driven by the fact that their One Child policy has by this point skewed their demographics toward a slightly majority-male population.

            According to said article, this has produced millions of young men with no hope of ever marrying and having a family, which is increasingly driving these men toward a state of restlessness and dissatisfaction with the current system. The last thing any society wants is millions of young, strong, angry men with no legitimate outlet for their urges and frustrations.

            The Chinese figure some overseas adventuring will act as a safety valve before said dissatisfaction leads to the fall of the CCP.

          • Dan

            Don’t leave out the most important supply and demand: what would the profit margins look like if even a quarter of those career women were plucked out of the office and home raising their kids instead.

            The broken dating market is collateral damage.

          • John C.

            I read an article recently about the modern single-mingle Christian church in a big city. The people who put decent money in the collection plate are a few guys who are showing off what big men they are. To make sure there are two or three girls for every one of him, the pastor dumbs down the sermon so there is nothing that will make the girls feel bad about slutty behavior or staying healthy or the bounty of raising a family. Stuff the younger desperately need to hear but where the church is failing them.

          • hank chinaski

            “driving these men toward a state of restlessness and dissatisfaction”
            Bring on the feelies/orgy porgy and soma, er, porn/tinder and legalized marijuana (or freely available opioids of various flavors) then dispose of the strong ones in the forever wars for the trifecta.

            Vox has also touched on Churchianity and the overall softness of the current churches. The Pope himself is a communist lifted straight from ‘Camp of the Saints’. Christianity in general, and Catholicism in particular allowed itself to be gelded a long time ago.

            GBFM, loolllzzz A comic relief sockpuppet of (one of the) Roissys? The world may never know.

          • viper32cm

            John, do you have or could you find a link to that article? I am leading an intensive study on what’s wrong with the modern church. That example is pretty much right on target with some of the things I’d like to talk about, especially since I’ve raised the problems of modern dating and sexuality with my group in the past.

            I’d like to say I’m surprised, but I’m not. On the one hand using a singles ministry as a lure to get guys and girls back in the fold is something that I think does happen, but that example is definitely not the way.

          • John C.

            The link is below. I should put a trigger warning on it. There is a lot of truth telling in it, but is written by someone banned by big tech who has to route his website through China and so speaks with a frankness and humor that comes from still having freedom of speech.


            Jack, you don’t delete comments and that is to be commended, however you might want to think about deleting this one as you may not want to be a referrer to Stormer.

          • Viper32cm

            Thanks, John. I don’t think I can use that article in light of the source.

  14. Dirty Dingus McGee

    I used to travel to Europe fairly regular, but it’s been about 12 years since I’ve been “across the pond”. One thing I noticed was that in MOST of Europe women LIKED being women and didn’t look at men as an enemy that must be defeated. It was pretty much the same when I first moved to semi rural Georgia some 40 years ago. I had spent the previous 11 years living in the Northeast and many of the girls/women there had started to develop an attitude that men were pigs.

    These days I remain single for purely selfish reasons. I have no interest in being berated for what I’ve done in life, and I don’t feel like changing my habits and routines to please someone else anymore.I will let women know upfront that I have no plan to carry any relationship past dating, or even “friends with benefits”. I’m just past the point of wanting to deal with the “mating ritual” anymore.

  15. MillennialScumbag

    Great story, but one nit to pick that Americans often get wrong.
    Afghani=Afghan currency.
    Afghan=Peoples and things from Afghanistan.


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