In his Sunday column Ted Byfield blames increased workloads, gays, women, drunk driving laws, and a distinct lack of wars for the decline of "non-erotic male companionship". For example:
...The strict enforcement of drunk driving laws -- another undoubted necessity, and undeniably a good thing, but nevertheless, there was a cost.
All-male enclaves at pubs, though they still exist, are distinctly inhibited as to quantities consumed, and the candor generated.
One recalls Winston Churchill's instant distrust of our tee-totalling prime minister, John Diefenbaker:
"I don't trust a man who won't drink with me," said Churchill.
Ted might have a point here. I find that most guys I know aren't nearly as interesting if I'm sober.
As for our unfortunate lack of a major war to bond in, Byfield writes:
...it was war, far more than anything else, that generated philia.
Men whose lives depended directly on one another often shared a sense of companionship that could never die.
Okay, but didn't they invent paint-ball as a non-fatal substitute?