I've been thinking a lot recently about consent, and how the last few weeks have underlined how terribly power has understood it and corrupted it.
Everyone is taught about consent in some limited way, but for men it's usually as a hurdle to be cleared. A checkpoint for attaining something even in relatively less-bad settings, the framing is always 'no means no.' Consent is still framed as a burden, so like the whole masculinity-industrial complex is built on getting over or around that hurdle. Men dream of power, because every single social cue deludes us into thinking that power lowers the bar.
See Trump's "when you're rich" comments, and when men attain that power, whether it be through age, marriage, workplace seniority, wealth, or status in the industry, we often behave accordingly. We expect that the bar of consent is now lower.that's where the "she's playing hard to get" stuff comes into play too.
We're taught that (mostly) displays of power can further lower the bar, it's not just the Weinsteins. It's how we indoctrinate boys and young men. All the idolization of "pickup artists," the Playboy fantasies, the aspiration to attain women as currency.
We don't teach them the sex-positive meaning of consent, as a joyful, fluid rational entrance into an enriching relationship. We don't teach them 'yes means yes,' and that sex isn't a dominion or a reward for power, but an ultimate expression of agency.