KMO & Rob Brooks

012 Better Than Nothing with Rob Brooks

11 Aug 2022 • 83 min • EN
83 min
No file found


Dr. Brooks is an evolutionary biologist, the author of two books ("Sex, Genes & Rock ‘n’ Roll" and "Artificial Intimacy"), and the founder of the Evolutionary Ecology of Sexual Reproduction Research Group at the UNSW, which group's research focuses on the big questions surrounding human sexuality.

In this longer-than-usual conversation, KMO and Rob touch on a number of sensitive questions, such as: Is an excess male population a danger to society and its rulers? Was monogamy a stabilizing force allowing to channel free (and often destructive) male energy toward something positive? Are today’s incels correct in pointing out the inherent inequity of the sexual market? Is income inequality one of the drivers of involuntary celibacy? If so, might we be better served by addressing the root cause or providing accessible, if only crudely imitative, substitutes… that might still be better than nothing?

  • 03:35 – Incels and the supply and demand problem of the mating market
  • 09:47 – Young males taking risks, for good or ill
  • 13:15 – Evolutionary psychology and its fans and skeptics on both ends of the ideological spectrum
  • 18:10 – Christopher Ryan’s "Sex at Dawn" and the advent of monogamy
  • 20:10 – "Chads," "betas," and the "Genghis Khans"
  • 23:06 – Monogamy stabilizing society
  • 27:45 – Incel language and the connection with economic inequality
  • 30:20 – Aibo by SONY
  • 32:10 – KMO reciting a scene from Steven Spielberg's “A.I.”
  • 37:25 – Getting a family dog, and how dogs have changed humanity
  • 40:00 – Whether machines can really do intimacy
  • 41:40 – The symbiotic relationship between humans and dogs and the transactional properties of sex
  • 45:30 – William S. Burroughs's “Words Of Advice For Young People” and a less-than-rosy view of the good old times
  • 47:45 – How the world has changed since KMO's and Rob’s teenage years
  • 49:52 – Enter the algorithms: making dating apps addictive
  • 58:35 – Sex robots and how they are no way close to human
  • 1:04:15 – Virtual reality sex giving sexbots a run for their money
  • 1:07:50 – “Futurama” character dating a robot and the attendant motivational traps
  • 1:09:26 – Dismissive views of artificial substitutes for sex and intimacy and why they might still be better than nothing


From "The Padverb podcast with KMO"