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(a) In your hypothetical example, everyone seems to be heterosexual. I assure you reality doesn't fully match your theory.

I'm talking about social status and "coolness" which are not identical to sexual "market value". In fact, I think it's a bad idea for women to exploit any sexual "assets", because a woman who is visibly trying to do so won't be taken seriously. I'm talking about a more general-purpose social asset which is that an attractive woman is judged to be "cool" (even by gay men).

The initial conditions of social status are set by people wanting things, in the aggregate, so the heterosexual 93% have disproportionate influence. The final conditions are set algorithmically by something that looks like PageRank: people care about popular peoples' opinions because other people care about popular peoples' opinions.

This isn't about what's right or how things should be. It's about what is.

(b) It's just an "attractive female" advantage, "attractive men" have been found to have similar advantages.

True, but the ages in which people are most attractive are 18-29. Men in that age range have low social status (theirs starts out very low, but increases into the 40s and 50s) while women at that age have high social status (and it declines with age). Again, I'm not saying this is how things should be, but it's what is.

The result is that women reach their maximum attractiveness at a time of high social status, while men reach maximum attractiveness at an age when society still considers most of them to be unproven losers who jack off and play videogames all day. People tend to become more average in looks as they get older, and by the age of peak social status for men, almost all of them are in the "average" range where attractiveness doesn't have a major push.

A woman doesn't have to be highly attractive to take advantage of this, by the way. She has to be seen as preternaturally cool. There are women of average or below-average looks who can pull this off.




Men in that age range have low social status (theirs starts out very low, but increases into the 40s and 50s) while women at that age have high social status (and it declines with age).

If I'm parsing this right, you're saying women's social status is mostly based on looks (you say it's better around then) and less so on (cay) career, whereas men's social status is less based on looks, and more on career.

You're probably right (that's probably how a lot of the world works), but damn it jim that's wrong. And from a realpolitik advice it might be helpful. I'm just a principled person, and want to fight this!

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It pretty much explains the 50-70 year old exec with the 23 year old arm candy that seems to be so common...2 people in their relative primes.

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If I'm parsing this right, you're saying women's social status is mostly based on looks (you say it's better around then) and less so on (cay) career, whereas men's social status is less based on looks, and more on career.

Exactly.

I'm just a principled person, and want to fight this!

You're fighting against millions of years of evolution. Speeches aren't going to do it, very advanced biotech might.

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Millions of years of evolution aren't as strong as you think. We have women out of the home and working, and lower class commoners and black people have near equal rights with the upper class nobility.

Bring it on.

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If you fight this, will you :

a) change the system and improve your success ?

b) fail and lower your success ?

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or c) change the system and lower your personal success but it's worth it because in aggregate you've helped the world more than you've hurt yourself.

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Right, c is also possible, but I'd question the ratio - helped the world "more" is yet another specific case, which depends on values.

Anyway, what are the odds?

I'd say : a) 1% b) 97% c) 2%

It seems to me like a bad idea, unlike you want to hurt yourself (self sacrifice is generally a bad thing in my philosophy) on you love risk taking/gambling.

It's not worth it.

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I think your hypothetical attractive 23y/o woman who goes into the office of a middle-aged manager who barely knows who she is and comes out with a better job will be very much rumoured to have "exploited" her "sexual 'assets'", whether she has or not, and that in itself is dangerous for her social status.

I'm also not totally sure that youth is such a negative for a man's social status in the workplace. I can think of a few charismatic young men I've seen get disproportionately (disproportionate to performance) far up the ladder. And maybe I'm mistaken, but terms like "rock star programmer" seem to invoke the cult of youth - in my mind it implies a hip young gunslinger.

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There are actually some pretty old rock stars out there, like Mick Jagger.

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