[pass the popcorn – the popcorn of existential horror]

The grown-ups are still arguing about who loves America more – the one from Southern Europe versus the one who lives in Southern Europe. On balance I’m supporting Team Hoyt on the grounds of them not being racial-supermacists but eek, Team Vox just argues better.

Hoyt here: http://accordingtohoyt.com/2016/02/28/i-was-born-american-a-blast-from-the-past-7-4-2014/

and Vox here: http://voxday.blogspot.com.au/2016/02/the-mask-comes-off.html

Vox continues to confuse ethnicity with race. Hoyt continues to confuse culture with ideology. So from Vox we have the appalling idea that if you have the wrong genes you aren’t a proper American and from Hoyt we have the appalling idea that if you don’t follow her ideology you aren’t a proper American. Wrong-blood versus wrong-think – both awful in their own special way.

I said ‘Team Vox’ but it is just Vox. The comment section at Vox Popoli doesn’t argue as well as their boss. At Hoyt’s the atmosphere is more egalitarian – a similar quality of argument from the regulars as the host. Vox keeps throwing out rhetorical punches – basically the ropes in this analogy are scary left-sounding arguments that Sarah Hoyt doesn’t want to make (e.g. maybe some things are performative rather than innate) on one side of the ring and the other the inherent contradictions of her position.

My, these transamericans are certainly entitled, aren’t they? Not only can they tell Americans what Real Americans are and are not, but they are going to kick out everyone who doesn’t think like they do, no matter whose posterity they happen might be! Nations aren’t genetically-related peoples, after all, but mere collections of similarly-minded groupthinkers. – Vox Day

So a nasty little double-edged dig at transgender people from Vox in a lead into a paragraph that paints (sort of correctly) that Hoyt’s position implies a kind of thought police or a ‘window into men’s souls’ to define citizenship.

I’ll leave the last word* to J Carlton who is a regular at According to Hoyt and who reblogged this at his own place in an attempt to do a mike-drop.

Here’s the thing, Vox, YOU don’t get a say in who’s an American, not anymore. You’ve given that up for a villa in Italy. I imagine that you enjoy it, that means that you no longer have to deal with America’s problems. All your problem are the problems of Europe and you are welcome to them. As for REAL Americans, I would rather have some of the people I’ve had the pleasure of knowing over the years than somebody who is as childish and cowardly as you, Vox. You ran from America’s problems and then had the unmitigated GALL to say that Sarah isn’t good enough to be an American.

Yeah, but on the internet you can never do a mike-drop. Come on Team Hoyt! That isn’t going to work! Vox has been shouted out by professionals!

*[OK, I didn’t leave the last word. That was my attempt to show how the brilliant emotional fueled telling off doesn’t close a discussion. OK, some tips. Go for the apparent STRENGTH of your opponent which is actually a hidden WEAKNESS. In Vox’s case it is THEOLOGY. The hidden weakness is FREE WILL. He is philosophically committed to it but his position tends towards DETERMINISM.]

Sculptris

More adventures in 3D. I haven’t done much more in Blender because I can make stuff much quicker in Cheetah 3D despite its limitations. Blender has everything but by having everything, the used interface is bewildering. One thing I wanted to use Blender for though was ‘sculpting’. Sculpting is the process by which you pull, twist, smooth, squish 3D objects into the shapes you want. In Cheetah I usually build objects up from smaller bits and just edit the odd polygon. This works fine for spaceships, buildings and robots but is not a great way of making heads. For people I semi-cheat and import models from Poser.

So I’m now trying Sculptris. Sculptris is free because the company that makes it want you to buy their bigger 3D app Z-Brush. However, for my purposes Sculptris looks like a handy tool for making things to import into Cheetah.

sculptris

The idea is that you take a sphere and then pinch, pull, squish, smooth etc as if it was a blob of clay. I made a big ugly head (I can only do ugly)! I can then export that as .obj file and import it into Cheetah for more fun and rendering. e.g. now big pink ugly head with lighting!

uglyheadcheet

Looks a bit Nixonian.

[popcorn munching noise – the popcorn of despair]

The back and forth between Sarah Hoyt (Team Cruz) and Vox Day (Team Trump) continues.

Sarah Hoyt here: http://accordingtohoyt.com/2016/02/26/monsters-of-the-id/

Vox Day in reply here: http://voxday.blogspot.com.au/2016/02/racial-identity-is-dispositive.html

It is kind of interesting watching Sarah work out that the man she allied with stands for political ideas that are extraordinarily toxic.

Meanwhile, as other sections of Puppydom are having conniptions about people who deleted their own Tweets being persecuted by Twitter, Donald Trump outlines how he intends to suppress freedom of speech: http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheats/2016/02/26/trump-wants-to-destroy-first-amendment.html but you know, keep on with the Twitter thing. Oh boy.

Will Day’s ‘useful idiots’ manage to thing through how they’ve all been played for years into advancing the cause of toxic-nonsense?

Follow up to ‘Trump, Cruz, Rabid & Sad’

https://camestrosfelapton.wordpress.com/2016/01/26/trump-cruz-rabid-sad/

In a previous post I looked at how the US Republican Party nomination process was playing out in Sad Land and Rabidonia. This is a short update.

The main thing to note is that, as far as I can tell, most notable Puppies aren’t saying a great deal about it. Which is wise and maybe some are quiet Bernie Sanders supporters (OK probably not). However the vocal ones are very vocal.

The two major voices are:

  • Vox Day – supporting Donald Trump
  • Sarah Hoyt – supporting Ted Cruz

This discussion is getting a tad heated with each poster refering to the other’s position. Sarah Hoyt avoids naming Vox, I think to avoid summoning anti-Vox trolls. Vox is lambasting Sarah and is throwing some nasty digs her way:

http://voxday.blogspot.com.au/2016/02/donald-trump-democratic-socialist.html

Now, she is right about one thing. I will not be Portuguese or Italian or German no matter how long I live in Europe. Here, you can move from a neighboring village that is a 10-minute walk away and you will always be stranieri to the locals. But what Sarah fails to understand is that she is no more American than I am Portuguese. She is a US resident, perhaps even a US citizen, but she is not an American. America is not an idea. America is not a concept. America is not a proposition nation. One cannot, contra her past assertions, become a genuine American just because one happens to believe one thinks a certain way.

Vox’s minions are nastier in the comments although the man himself claims that relations are not strained between the two of them.

Vox’s piece was in response to this piece by Sarah Hoyt

The Carol Of The Bells – A Blast From The Past, 2/20/2014

It does meander a bit and some of the more overt anti-Trump/VD parts are in the comments.

Oh, because Trump isn’t? Have you actually looked at Trump’s history? He talks game. He’s not any better.
Look, he is “European Right Wing” which is why VD likes him. Americans following VD MUST understand he’s not an American conservative. He’s an European right winger. They’re not the same. And here in the states, they’re both socialists. The only difference is leftists in Europe are INTERNATIONAL socialists, and right wing is NATIONAL socialist. That’s all.
You want national socialism here? Yeah. Trump is your man. He’s into the banks for millions and he’s corrupted everything he touched. But you guys believe he’s a white Knight sans peur et sans reproche. Good LORD.

As always Vox writes better, argues more effectively and for a position that is more absurd and dangerous. Sarah Hoyt gets at the core aspect that infuriates people opposed to Trump: the guy is an obvious fraud.

Meanwhile the previously Pro-Carson, John C Wright has declared his prefered choice…and it is BERNIE SANDERS! OMG! Ha, no only kidding, its Donald Trump.

John C Wright Endorses The Devil

To be fair to Mr Wright he doesn’t seem too happy about it. Naturally, given the right’s deep and implacable commitment to free-speech in all its forms Wright identifies the key political issue of the day:

That is not what I believe. I say the main enemy is the Press. Destroy the Press, and the federal government can be driven back into its proper constitutional limitations. With the Press at large acting as the False Prophet for the Beast, it cannot be driven back, because the people are deceived into thinking the Beast will not consume their lives.

[That quote isn’t on JCW’s blog which only has an excerpt of his longer column here  http://www.everyjoe.com/2016/02/22/politics/election-2016-real-and-delusional-america/#ixzz41CqRpSQ0

]
Yup, that’s how the JCW’s will restore ‘freedom’ – they’ll first destroy the press. I’m guessing they’ll then protect freedom by taking away those other terrible threats like voting, differences of opinion, women having lives beyond what JCW thinks they should have, stuff like that…

Adam Baldwin De-Quits Twitter

After quitting Twitter in a manner that caused his ‘friends’ to launch their own conspiracy theories (see https://camestrosfelapton.wordpress.com/2016/02/23/the-twitterspiracy/ ) Adam Baldwin has been posting tweets again on Twitter. Now to be fair to Mr Baldwin they are all about how he is quitting Twitter but they do look like a public health safety message about the addictive qualities of Twitter – here is a guy on public record of how intolerable Twitter is who staged his own fake Twitter censoring and yet IS STILL POSTING TWEETS. Good grief, are Twitter cutting nicotine into their app or something.

baldwinnotquitting

That third one looks a bit scary – “No longer voluntarily participate…” Have Twitter kidnapped Baldwin and forced him to carry on tweeting? 🙂

A Comment on Free Speech & Twitter

[This was a comment I made at File 770 on this issue the other day]

I think the Trust and Safety council is very much about free speech. I disagree with others here (to a limited extent) that because Twitter is a private company that free-speech doesn’t come into it. The broader notion applies even if the specific aspect of the US Bill of Rights does not – i.e. if you are making a platform for people to discuss ideas and communicate with each other then people should feel free to speak openly. Twitter isn’t obliged to do that but it is something that I think ethically they should TRY to do given the nature of what they were doing (e.g. if they were making cornflakes then not so much).

Doxxing, harassment, threats, bullying, sexualized comments, fat shaming, attempting to persuade people to commit suicide, SWATing and systematic verbal abuse are all actions that LIMIT speech. There is no doubt about that nor any doubt why the alt-right has adopted those behaviors (which can be found in all ideologies to varying degrees) as formal tactics in their culture war. They do these things to SILENCE people, to drive people away from platforms. This isn’t a secret. They are open about their use of these tactics as weapons against what they see as leftwing cultural hegemony. Consequently, yes any moves to PROTECT speech on twitter (i.e. people actually discussing ideas) falls disproportionately on a group that OPPOSES speech on Twitter (i.e. those attempting to make people FEAR that if they speak up they will be targetted for abuse by a particular kind of political troll).

The alt-right didn’t invent online abuse and they didn’t invent trolling. They don’t have a monopoly on either. However they have, of their own free will and as a deliberate ploy, adopted online abuse as a tactic whose purpose is to silence their opponents.

Free speech is a good thing for a reason. It is good because it is what facilitates the exchange of ideas and that needs to include unpopular ideas. Is this what the alt-right are defending? No. They aren’t defending the *exchange* of ideas nor are they trying to facilitate a dialogue. Rather they are trying to shut particular voices down (which voices? In particular *women* – hence the false claims that Anita Sarkessian heads the Trust and Safety council). There are ideas that they do not want expressed and they will use personal attacks designed to cause real world damage to people as a means to that end.

I don’t think the issue of free speech is limited to government but I also don’t think it is some rule-book clause either. The ethical imperative that arises from free speech is that we should seek to maximize the exchange of ideas and enable people to discuss without fear. Consequently I don’t have a problem with limiting how others may try to stop others speaking freely. Can Vox, Milo, Baldwin, et al currently express their ideology? Sure, they are hardly lacking platforms and it isn’t like Vox’s political views (for example) don’t get an airing. Can they seriously not find a way to discuss their views via Twitter without breaking the Twitter terms of service? I very much doubt that and to date none of them have explained how there is intrinsically a conflict.

Some Groups on Twitter’s Trust & Safety Council

Here are some organization taking helping keep children safe from people who would do them harm.

ikeepsafe – http://ikeepsafe.org/about-us/

iKeepSafe tracks global trends and issues surrounding digitally connected products and their affect on children. This research drives the continuous creation of positive resources for parents, educators and policymakers who teach youths how to use new media devices and platforms in safe and healthy ways.

iCanHelpLine – http://icanhelpline.org/about/

iCanHelpline is where schools and districts can call or email to get help in resolving problems that surface in social media – problems such as cyberbullying, sexting and reputation issues involving students, staff or anyone in the school community. It’s a free service for schools, so we ask that individuals seeking help with a social media issue ask their school to contact us so we can all work together.

National Network to End Domestic Violence – http://nnedv.org/about/history.html

The National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) was founded more than 25 years ago to be the leading voice for survivors of domestic violence and their allies.

NNEDV was formed in 1990 when a small group of domestic violence victim advocates came together to promote federal legislation related to domestic violence.  The group was known as the Domestic Violence Coalition on Public Policy.

Over the next four years, it became an alliance of domestic violence shelter programs and statewide groups and coalitions against domestic and sexual violence across the country.

Project Rockit – http://projectrockit.com.au/about/

PROJECT ROCKIT was launched in 2006 by Rosie and Lucy Thomas, two Australian sisters who saw the opportunity to create real social change by tackling the issue of bullying in school communities.

To put it simply, PROJECT ROCKIT builds spaces where imagination, leadership, creative expression and acceptance are available to all young people, regardless of their social label, grades, gender, sexuality or cultural background.

Love146 – https://love146.org/mission-vision/

Love146 is an international human rights organization working to end child trafficking and exploitation through survivor care and prevention. The trafficking and exploitation of children is one of the darkest stories and most severe human rights abuses imaginable. But for us, the hope of ending it is a reality. Love146 is helping grow the movement to end child trafficking while providing effective, thoughtful solutions. We believe in the power of love and its ability to effect sustainable change. Love is the foundation of our motivation.

FOSI – https://www.fosi.org/about/mission/

The Family Online Safety Institute is an international, non-profit organization which works to make the online world safer for kids and their families.  FOSI convenes leaders in industry, government and the non-profit sectors to collaborate and innovate new solutions and policies in the field of online safety.

The Internet Watch Foundation – https://www.iwf.org.uk/

We are the UK Hotline for reporting criminal online content:
Child sexual abuse content hosted anywhere in the world
Criminally obscene adult content hosted in the UK
Non-photographic child sexual abuse images hosted in the UK

The National Domestic Violence Hotline – http://www.thehotline.org/about-us/

Operating around the clock, seven days a week, confidential and free of cost, the National Domestic Violence Hotline provides lifesaving tools and immediate support to enable victims to find safety and live lives free of abuse. Callers to The Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) can expect highly trained, experienced advocates to offer compassionate support, crisis intervention information and referral services in over 170 languages. Visitors to this site can find information about domestic violence, safety planning, local resources and ways to support the organization.

Bravehearts – http://bravehearts.org.au/pages/ourmission.php

At Bravehearts, we are committed to achieving the following:
Our Mission
To stop child sexual assault in our society.
Our Vision
To make Australia the safest place in the world to raise a child.
Our Guiding Principles
To, at all times, do all things to serve our Mission without fear or favour and without compromise and to continually ensure that the best interests and protection of the child are placed before all other considerations.

Thorn – https://www.wearethorn.org/our-work-to-stop-child-sexual-exploitation/

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children – http://www.missingkids.org/About

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children® opened in 1984 to serve as the nation’s clearinghouse on issues related to missing and sexually exploited children. Today NCMEC is authorized by Congress to perform 22 programs and services to assist law enforcement, families and the professionals who serve them.

These are also just *some* of the organizations that are on Twitter’s Trust and safety Council: https://about.twitter.com/safety/council

It is interesting how certain people only mention one of the organization (and often then get it confused with Anita Sarkeesian as an individual). It is interesting that certain people on the right attack this council and hence wittingly or unwittingly attack the organizations above (and many others). A commentator on this blog described the members of this council as ‘partisan dickheads’ – wow. I assume this was out of genuine ignorance but still, this is where the alt-right is heading and has been heading for years – to become the defenders of abuse.