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Sunday, January 12, 2020

Mailvox: the utility of the framework

MS appreciates the perspective provided the Social-Sexual Hierarchy's framework of behavioral patterns.
I've been doing a little historical reading and it seems to me that most of the very famous betrayals in history were by Gamma types. I know you've repeatedly made the point that Gammas can't be trusted precisely because they'll turn on others when they feel slighted, but being able to think of well-known examples of treachery and then comparing what is known of the traitor with the Gamma profile has been quite enlightening.
This is a useful observation. One common theme in betrayals is the way in which the betrayer acts because he feels that he has been insufficiently valued, respected, or rewarded. "I was a big fan of X, but then he went too far" is more than just an old rhetorical device used by the media and political fundraising organizations as long as I can remember, in a personal context it is a very clear sign that the turncoat is a gamma.

Which, of course, is why the same logic that dictates turncoats cannot be trusted tends to suggest that gammas should not be trusted. Envy is the great sin of the Gamma, so as long as there is someone in the organization of whom he may feel envious, the potential for betrayal will be there.

It can be difficult, particularly for those who can sincerely use the assistance, to turn down much-needed offers of support from enthusiastic supporters who only seem to want to help. But the costs of their assistance usually turns out to be several orders of magnitude larger than the benefits. This is why you should never volunteer to help any individual or organization if you suspect you would ever be unable to simply walk away from the situation in silence if things don't happen to work out to your satisfaction.

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49 Comments:

Blogger Rattlesnake_Kid January 12, 2020 9:06 AM  

Useful observation indeed. Looking back, Mask of Treachery's depiction of Anthony Blunt is the most gamma ray intense thing I've read. Blunt's crusade to make a total mockery of sports during his school years solely because it was the one thing he couldn't excel at was pathetic beyond words, but it gave a deep insight into what truly mattered to him.

Blogger Russell Snow January 12, 2020 9:07 AM  

Judas was rebuked by Christ for saying the ointment the woman put on Jesus's feet should have been sold and the money given to the poor. Right after that he went to the temple and betrayed the Lord.

Blogger Shane Bradman January 12, 2020 9:13 AM  

It is so instinctual to despise the traitor archetype that whistleblowers risk never working again for betraying their company, even if they are doing a good thing.

Blogger flyingtiger January 12, 2020 10:11 AM  

This could explain why Herman betrayed the Romans in 3 AD. It should be noted that Herman was killed by other Germans.

Blogger KPKinSunnyPhiladelphia January 12, 2020 10:20 AM  

Benedict Arnold is certainly an interesting case study in betrayal, and he certainly evinced the gamma tendency to feel slighted and disrespected.

On the other hand he was a brilliant and courageous military commander, even as he was involved in profiteering schemes that led to his reprimand by Washington. Money and prestige were underlying motivations. He was a man driven by greed and envy, while at the same time demonstrating a high level of organizational talents and multiple skills.

While many of the continentals loathed him, Washington did respect him, and he should have leveraged that and kept the course. Had he done that, there would be monuments to Arnold. But he couldn't help himself.

As Vox has said, gammas can be intelligent, and Arnold obviously was. I'd say he was not a total gamma, because he strove for real accomplishments. But his gamma tendencies were his undoing.

Blogger Cataline Sergius January 12, 2020 10:53 AM  

Benedict Arnold might be a good example.

He spent a good chunk of his life fuming over slights. Was frequently in debt to maintain a lifestyle that he felt he deserved but couldn't actually afford. Was overly vulnerable to flattery.

And appears to have finally gone over the edge into open treason after he received Washington's formal letter of reprimand.

The telling thing is that Washington had been forced to write it in exchange for giving Arnold command of West Point. It was obvious but Arnold couldn't get past the wounded pride.

Then there was Arnold's second wife. There is no proof that she was having an affair with Major Andre but she was clearly dealing with Alpha widowhood when she married Arnold.

[Arnold] writing to Washington in May 1779, "Having become a cripple in the service of my country, I little expected to meet [such] ungrateful returns".

Blogger Longtime Lurker January 12, 2020 11:06 AM  

I don't know if Benedict Arnold was gamma, but he certainly felt himself entitled to rewards and respect that were not forthcoming.

Blogger Sean January 12, 2020 11:41 AM  

I actually have a Hierarchy question. I have a friend who I always considered an Alpha but he had some traits that I don't understand in context of an alpha. Can someone be both Alpha and Gamma? I don't know the right way to deal with him. He's one of the best sales people in the fortune 500 company he works for. I might have been mistaking that for the alpha part. He doesn't get treated like the big dog that he is and he's talked about taking his ball elsewhere but is too afraid to leave until his daughter is out of college even though he could make twice what he's making elsewhere. The gamma part that seems to shine through is when discussing our mutual fandom for the local college team. He won't let go of the previous coach being fired two years ago. To the point that is exhausting. And anytime you show him facts he just moves the goalposts. Its exhausting. I just told him the other day that I would no longer discuss football with him. His response a day later was "I knew I would win eventually" Is he maybe a Beta that keeps his Gamma part in check while at work and then lets the gamma fly at home? He's never tried to infiltrate and take over anything that I know of, he just wants to be left alone at work, but he can never be wrong and will pick at something for days, weeks, and sometimes years, and his arguments tend to be pages in length and completely incoherent and contradictory. I'm not sure how to classify him to try to figure out the best way to deal with him.

Blogger Miguel January 12, 2020 11:43 AM  

"because he feels that he has been insufficiently valued, respected, or rewarded"


Judas!

Blogger KPKinSunnyPhiladelphia January 12, 2020 12:02 PM  

Interesting how Arnold came up in multiple minds!!

His second wife was a schemer, in addition to being quite the looker apparently.

Arnold just couldn't see how nobody else mattered but Washington -- a guy, we must remember, who put his ass on the line when he really didn't have to. A reasonable response would have been, "I know George, a man of selflessness and rectitude and even more important, power, will support me ultimately, so I'll suck it up and take it."

But nope, couldn't do it. Gamma wins.

Blogger VFM #7634 January 12, 2020 1:04 PM  

I suspect that Major Andre was a Bravo.

Arnold is one of those types who I can't tell are Alpha or Gamma, since they have definite traits of both but don't quite fit either. Alcibiades and Bill Clinton are other good examples.

Blogger Longtime Lurker January 12, 2020 1:33 PM  

@11: Yup. That's the thing about Arnold, he exhibits Alpha and Gamma traits.

My working hypothesis is that gamma is more like a personality disorder (Gamma Personality Disorder?) that can affect anyone, but is most likely to plague deltas because deltas are ubiquitous and also because deltas are more likely to have grievances due to low status.

Another thing about Arnold: His dad was a raging alcoholic who died heavily in debt and excommunicated too.

More than a few of you have speculated about the role of the father in the development of the gamma. Maybe Arnold's is a text book case study in that regard.

Blogger RedJack January 12, 2020 1:52 PM  

If you are going to be a whistleblower, it is the end of your career. I have done it exactly once, because the issue was going to destroy the company.

I left by choice two weeks after I reported the issue to the corporate office.

Blogger Kiwi January 12, 2020 2:32 PM  

If you don't think about how you will react to things not going as you prefer, then you risk your mental wellness. Know yourself.

Blogger The Greay Man January 12, 2020 3:10 PM  

The gammas at the terrible, dying subreddit are going to use this post to say that Vox admits Owen is a gamma who turned on Crowder and Rogan.

Can't wait for their predictable behavior.

Blogger Doktor Jeep January 12, 2020 3:24 PM  

I think there is a huge difference between a gamma and a Delta were perception of a lack of respect is concerned.
To use some standard psychobabble, it's likely the gamma internalizes - a word I think is overused and too vague - the disrespect. Where a Delta might just shrug and remember not to do the offender any favors, the gamma sees it as an attack on every fiber of his being and simmers, for years maybe, plotting a sort of bitchy spiteful revenge.

Blogger Ingot9455 January 12, 2020 3:34 PM  

Vox has discussed 'situational Alpha' and 'subject matter expert' in relations to Gammas and so forth.

Among Dungeons and Dragons gamer geeks, I'm an alpha. I know my stuff, I'm good at it, I run games, I run conventions, people clamor to get a seat at my table at a gaming convention. (woo-hoo.)

But in normal situations I'm a Delta who has mostly but not completely overcome Gamma tendencies. I do comparative grunt-work at work. It needs to be done and it helps to be done by a person who is expert although a person who is expert should also be building tools to do the work, which I am also doing.

A person can be a comparative alpha in a limited situation that they have situational mastery of and great experience with. But have an overall gamma setting everywhere else.

Blogger Paradise Lost January 12, 2020 3:43 PM  

My barber called that the law of the disciple. 1 in charge, 11 followers and one that wants to be in charge. He said this principle applied to all organizations.

Blogger Akuma January 12, 2020 4:09 PM  

"Which of course, is why the same logic that dictates turncoats cannot be trusted tends to suggest that gammas should not be trusted. Envy is the great sin of the Gamma, so as long as there is someone in the organization of whom he may feel envious, the potential for betrayal will be there."

What do you do if the Gamma is in a position of Authority? Authority being anyone in position of power of someone else. Ive seen them lose their shit over someone not saying Good Morning. I only ask because Gammas often end up in Authority positions despite being lower ranked males and the results are catatrosphic.

Blogger Akuma January 12, 2020 4:15 PM  

"deltas are ubiquitous and also because deltas are more likely to have grievances due to low status."

Delta's have Grievances because they are competent and get sick of having to fix everythig for everyone. Plus their Old Lady is a femnist cunt that won't put out.

Blogger Moor January 12, 2020 4:25 PM  

Et tu, Brute?


Perhaps even Rome was ultimately undone by the Gammas...

Blogger Akuma January 12, 2020 4:26 PM  

"I might have been mistaking that for the alpha part. He doesn't get treated like the big dog that he is and he's talked about taking his ball elsewhere but is too afraid to leave until his daughter is out of college even though he could make twice what he's making elsewhere."

Keyword being could. Just leave/Go home/Just Quit/Find Another Job Rhetoric has no basis in reality. It feels good though. As someone whose been on the verge of Homelessness due to Gammas you cant just instantly leave/quit/go home/find another job that quick. The stress of it all will drive anyone insane.

However, as we all know, according to the Boomer, Jobs are plenteful, everywhere you look, and easy to get. Just Do It Meng! Assuming you have exact experience, the ability to withstand no job training whatsoever, and are an expert at pecker checking. You'll do fine Kid if you Just Do It!

In reality he probably wants to wait until shes done so it doesnt effect her too. But I digress because Im just a Millenial Kid that is wrong and refuses to believe that the customer is always right, the manager is the best person for the job , and the employer is Always Right. Even if the law, OSHA Inspector, or Judge says otherwise.

Blogger James Lovebirch January 12, 2020 4:34 PM  

@8

Like other people are getting at, there's a difference between having some of the gamma characteristics and having your dominant pattern be gamma. Arnold is a good example because a real gamma could never get into his position or have a wife people would call a looker.

Blogger map January 12, 2020 5:14 PM  

A gamma is a person who has suffered pretty much a lifetime of outgrouping. This outgrouping was caused by continuously having a level of status beneath the people around him. Instead of raising his status in the world, the gamma seeks "subject matter expertise" in something that he then leverages into ingrouping.

The problem is, it does not work. When this fails, the gamma get angry and seeks revenge because, not knowing how the world works, he sees this treatment as unjust.

One tell of the gamma is when the gamma resorts to elaborate explanations of his skill-set beyond what is required to do the task. Think of Data, from Star Trek, when Picard has to cut off Data's monologues after requesting information.

I understand gammas and I feel sorry for them. It is a consequence of a clueless upbringing by well-intentioned but deficient parents.

Blogger Ron Tomlinson January 12, 2020 6:40 PM  

Don't know about the real life Cassius but Shakespeare's version of him fits the gamma profile. Intelligent, manipulative, prone to hysterics and possessing a murderous envy of Caesar. His hysterics are even identified as originating from his mother ('Have not you love enough to bear with me when that rash humour which my mother gave me makes me forgetful?'). Yet Brutus conspired only for the good of Rome as he saw it.

Blogger Kiwi January 12, 2020 6:57 PM  

@ Ingot9455

This situational Alpha sounds to me like a person who's speciality, or their purpose if you will, has been identified, most likely by a parent but perhaps a teacher, and allowed to flourish.

One of the worst things for kids IMO is them not thinking they can be better than most people at something. Their natural interests are a good place to start. Their finish line ends at master/teacher for those who follow.

Gammas are not average IQ, but they are lost purpose wise. I would advise them to think back to what they loved doing and reading about, and make that their purpose, their job, their business. They might find they already know more than most people do about that subject. It's never too late.

Blogger John Rockwell January 12, 2020 7:24 PM  

When true evil becomes intolerable it may be one of the only options left.

Especially if one discovers one is working for an evil organization

Blogger John Rockwell January 12, 2020 7:27 PM  

Perhaps turning the other cheek is the counter to feeling slighted all the time.

And getting rid of coveteousness envy and pride. Counters entitlement.

Blogger John Rockwell January 12, 2020 7:33 PM  

Social status is finite and there is only one slot for Alpha.

That's why humility is important. And not too much stock placed in being no.1

Pride makes Arnolds position unbearable.

Blogger Meng Greenleaf January 12, 2020 7:35 PM  

The Harvard Economic Complexity Index lists the Japanese economy as the most complex on their list. I noticed that many countries towards the top of the list are not diverse / multicultural. This runs exactly counter to The Narrative: Diversity is Our Strength (though does suggest Diversity is (((Our))) Strength).

How long can academics who study macroeconomic phenomenon pretend The Narrative is true?

As to the OP, I've been told (mostly by Westerners, and usually in a disparaging tone) that "the problem with Japanese" is they just focus on their one task and try to do it as good as they can. They never aspire to be more. And, I quote: "There's one Big Brain at the top that does all the thinking. Everyone else is a cog."

This got me to thinking of American culture. Our propensity to overturn the status quo. We value the tall poppy (alpha) and somewhat devalue the worker bee (delta). Or am I reading our early history incorrectly?

Blogger John Rockwell January 12, 2020 7:37 PM  

In the grand scheme of things why should anyone be butthurt over football.

It doesnt determine eternity nor does it matter on the grand scheme of things.

Its a fun past time. Not a religion.

Blogger Gulo Gulo January 12, 2020 8:01 PM  

\b I only ask because Gammas often end up in Authority positions despite being lower ranked males and the results are catatrosphic.\b

Pretty much at least half of the US police force.

\b Delta's have Grievances because they are competent and get sick of having to fix everythig for everyone. Plus their Old Lady is a femnist cunt that won't put out.\b

Pretty much spot on. Although the bitter feminist was replaced with a cutie who loves being domestic.

Blogger Pathfinderlight January 12, 2020 8:15 PM  

I always thought of Lu Bu, the classic betrayer of Romance of the Three Kingdoms as someone who overdosed on Alpha assholery. From what I remember, his multiple betrayals were all about getting in good with the next leading power. He only met his end when he finally got it wrong.

The Revolutionary War was interesting in that there were no shortage of brave commanders with big personalities. There was, however, a shortage of commanders willing to take on the tasks of supply and training. It was common for soldiers all the way up to General to be stiffed on pay because of financial shortfalls.

Blogger Ingot9455 January 12, 2020 8:26 PM  

@26 The situational Alpha was also discussed in terms of Ted Cruz. Powerful Senator with a nationwide following, hot Goldman-Sachs wife; but the oddest behavior pattern when he comes into contact with a super-Alpha like President Trump. Strange behavior patterns in his history.

Blogger VFM #7634 January 12, 2020 9:13 PM  

@34 Ingot9455

Pretty much anyone can be a "situational Alpha", which is why I consider the term practically meaningless. Cruz, for example, was ruled a Gamma by VD himself after his little performance at the GOP convention.

Blogger A guy in a dusty attic January 12, 2020 9:50 PM  

I'm starting to think that old men who sit around at bars and complain are gammas.

Blogger A guy in a dusty attic January 12, 2020 10:05 PM  

"I always thought of Lu Bu, the classic betrayer of Romance of the Three Kingdoms as someone who overdosed on Alpha assholery. From what I remember, his multiple betrayals were all about getting in good with the next leading power. He only met his end when he finally got it wrong."

In Chinese culture Lu Bu was of the older generation so Tsao and and the three Brothers, were is underlings. Lu Bu's problem was he was powerful on the battlefield but he couldn't domestically run a kingdom or understand court intrigue.

Blogger Doktor Jeep January 12, 2020 10:54 PM  

Per "doing it" and the SSH:
- My take- ...
Alpha: I find the right people to get it done and keep them motivated to do right.
Bravo: it make sure it's done the way the boss wants so he is not dissapointed in us.
Delta: I do it as best I can every time.
Gamma: nobody knows how to do it as well as I can.
Omega: if I can do it, anybody can do it.

Blogger John Rockwell January 12, 2020 11:54 PM  

The ultimate sin of Gamma is pride/arrogance. From this flows vulnerability to flattery and sensitivity to all slights.

Thinking he deserves better than actual competence.

Blogger John Rockwell January 12, 2020 11:57 PM  

@Gulo Gulo

Deltas need guidance to avoid marrying feminist harpies. Save them time, money and emotional damage.

Blogger furor kek tonicus ( you think it's a coincidence that Tucker Carlson shares initials with Ted Cobbler? Never Go Full Retard ) January 13, 2020 12:55 AM  

8. Sean January 12, 2020 11:41 AM
I actually have a Hierarchy question.


socio-SEXUAL Hierarchy.

you're telling us that women are throwing themselves at this man?

to be clear, there's probably a certain amount of success just due to the money he makes.

but does he move on to the next woman because HE wants too, or because they're dropping him like a hot potato once they get to know him?

Blogger Tomato bear January 13, 2020 3:41 AM  

Well intentioned but deficient indeed

Blogger DarwinIsAHarshMistress January 13, 2020 7:11 AM  

At a big football school third wave feminism asserted itself during my undergrad years. Socio-sexual politics were wrenched from The Seventies (Boomer) If It Feels Good Do It to authoritarian Junior Anti Sex League.

Lots of us guys got caught up in this version of the cultural Revolution. It was certainly traumatic, with false charges and hair trigger responses to typical young men's advances/come ons.

Looking back it certainly changed my behavior and it could only be called gamma. Yet inside was the same normal guy now hand shy.

Pain. Confusion.

I know. Lots of frat boys learned to be gamma as the rules were fluid and always wratcheting tighter. We did what we could to avoid expulsion or police involvement.

So is that gamma? It seems like the thug of A Clockwork Orange but without the psychotic felony bits.

Asking for a fren!

Blogger The Greay Man January 13, 2020 7:41 AM  

I called it.

https://www.reddit.com/r/owenbenjamin/comments/eo1hfr/vox_admits_owen_is_a_gamma_who_turned_on_crowder/

Blogger The Greay Man January 13, 2020 7:49 AM  

I see there's even a second post quoting my comment.

https://www.reddit.com/r/owenbenjamin/comments/envxfx/just_going_to_put_this_here/

Blogger VD January 13, 2020 7:58 AM  

I called it.

They really do live in a fever swamp of self-delusion. One can only imagine how they would approach a Rorschach test.

The Norm: "It's a butterfly"

The Perv: "It's two people getting it on."

The Gamma: "It's Teddy Spaghetti finally turning on Owen! I knew it! I just KNEW it would happen! LOL!"

Blogger Deus Vult January 13, 2020 9:57 AM  

@24 How very gamma of you placing blame on someone else and not expecting gammas to take personal responsibility for their actions.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd January 13, 2020 10:28 AM  

Longtime Lurker wrote:My working hypothesis is that gamma is more like a personality disorder (Gamma Personality Disorder?) that can affect anyone, ...
I see Alpha/Beta/Delta as a leadership spectrum, with Gamma as the most likely pathology. I see Sigma as another spectrum, orthogonal to leadership, with Omega as the most likely pathology.
Meng Greenleaf wrote:How long can academics who study macroeconomic phenomenon pretend The Narrative is true?
As long as it pays to pretend.

Blogger John Rockwell January 13, 2020 6:42 PM  

Invicta has a good video on how one Alpha Julius Caesar demonstrated social competence:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGaxhkemzDk

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