Beyond the Beltway: Manly Men Are In

This is a partial transcript from "The Beltway Boys", April 9, 2005, that has been edited for clarity.

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FRED BARNES, CO-HOST: Mort, the ladies have spoken. Put down the hair gel and pick up a power tool as we go “Beyond the Beltway.”

According to a new Harris poll (search), manly men are in, metrosexuals (search) are out. Good-bye prissy, sensitive, style-conscious men of "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy." Hello Home Depot-loving, steak-eating macho men.

According to a new poll, 75 percent of women say their ideal man buys his grooming products at a grocery or drugstore, not a salon. Seventy-two percent of women say their ideal man spends his free time doing home improvement projects. Well, I can’t claim that.

And 61 percent of women say they’d rather see a man’s hands rough from working hard than well-manicured, just-back-from-the-salon hands.

Mort, you know, I’d like to elaborate on this myself, but I feel like I must ask, what do you make of this?

MORT KONDRACKE, CO-HOST: Women want a reversion to the farm, you know, instead of office people, they don’t, they, they don’t want high incomes any more, they want people who are manual laborers? I don’t think so.

And I wouldn’t over interpret this, either.

BARNES: Really?

KONDRACKE: Yes. I don’t think that women really want men who ignore them, you know, who are insensitive toward them. Well, no, but the implication of that is that you know, we’re going to revert back to the 19th century, where the gentlemen had cigars after dinner and the ladies were shuttered into another room to talk about petticoats and stuff like that.

BARNES: Nineteenth century, though.

KONDRACKE: Yes. And, you know, and I don’t think that women want men who will keep them in the kitchen and insist that they stay there.

BARNES: Not what that poll said.

KONDRACKE: I have the feeling that the underlying purpose, of course, this was taken by Dodge Trucks (search), you know to sell more trucks.

BARNES: Right.

KONDRACKE: But the implication is that it has political content, that it means that we, that women would like to be, you know denied the vote or something like that.

BARNES: Oh, no, no, Mort.


BARNES: Don’t look at me… here’s what I think. A manly man’s not a male supremacist, not a bully, someone who, they aren’t necessarily conservative, but I think probably a majority of them are, don’t you think so? Come on, these are red state men, these are not blue state men, that’s for sure. They’re not.

And, and importantly, a manly man is not vain, he’s not spending a lot of time thinking about his hair, for instance. So...

KONDRACKE: He’s thinking about his muscles, he’s working out… he’s taking steroids and all that.

BARNES: He should work out. He’s gallant.


BARNES: He should stay in good shape. And I think a manly man, after a certain period of time in life, has sort of figured out what they’re interested in, and it’s maybe a few things, you know, I mean, I know what I’m interested in, you know, I’m interested in my wife, my family, my faith, sports, and politics.

KONDRACKE: And you’re a sensitive man. Fred, I have seen you on this set with tears in your eyes.

BARNES: All right, move on.


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