Dave Freer Defends Jon Del Arroz

Mad Genius, Dave Freer has written a curious reply to me in the comments of the Stir the Pot article I linked to previously. It’s particularly odd because he’d spent the previous few comments to me telling me that I had been banned from MGC but he was unable to say when or who by. Having not commented there for awhile, I think he must have assumed I’d been banned rather than just having lost interest. I’ll put aside the irony of ban-happy-anti-banners for the time being.

Here’s Dave’s remarkable defence in which he addresses me directly.

“Camestros’s rationalization: ‘ – Jon wanted publicity, joining SFWA and joining Worldcon were for publicity and being banned has gained him more. He hasn’t suffered in the least and zero harm was done to him. Worldcon avoids a headache. It was actually a win-win for both parties.’
Camestros rationalization translated to current affairs: ‘The Rohingya wanted to be citizens of a state, not stateless, untermensch in Burma. The Burmese government decided to ethnically cleanse them from Burma: Now, as refugees, some have been able to migrate to Australia where they can become citizens and not untermensch. It’s actually a win-win for both Burma and the Rohingya.’
No Camestros. It was a lose for JDA, who lost his opportunity to network and, as it is his home area, do so relatively cheaply, as well as damaging his local status. That was a cost free win for WorldCon. At this point he went public about it, and retrieved some of the willful they had done. Rather like the refugee getting a better life in Australia… not what he’d wanted, or would have happily gone through to get, but better than WorldCon gave him. WorldCon on the other hand ended up with egg on their face again, and I suspect substantive costs. So their cost free win became an expensive lose. So it became WorldCon lose: JDA gets a different reward — not because WorldCon were trying to achieve some fair win:win outcome, but because their attempt to have a win:lose backfired on them.”
Well, no. Rape, murder, assault and the destruction of home and property are not a good ‘translation’ of Jon’s situation. Nor is the chance of being resettled in Australia such that it is (see for example https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/sep/19/australia-offers-pay-rohingya-refugees-return-myanmar ) somehow redress the horrors that the Rohingya’s have faced.
It really does sadden me the extent to which the remnants of the Sad Puppies and Superversive are willing to try and exploit other people’s genuine suffering to cast themselves as victims. Above is one example, the repeated attempt to exploit child-safety and claims of child abuse to try and score debate points is another and frankly appalling.
People treating child abuse as a joke or to make snarky remarks? Please stop. Using mass murder and ethnic cleansing as a way of making cheap shots? No. If the intent is to convince me that the comment section of MGC is not somewhere I would want to be then, well that certainly will convince me but what comments like that are, aside from trivialising those issues in a way that unwittingly helps abusers, is a kind of psychological self-harm. It does damage to yourself – it undermines your own capacity to be a good person. Be *better* than that.
To return to Jon. As I’ve pointed out – joining the SFWA and Worldcon were publicity stunts. Everybody knows that. It isn’t a mystery. Pretending that they weren’t is just silly. Jon is not short of places to ‘network’ and if MGC is to be believed then Worldcon is a poor place to do so. MGC has spent years now saying how terrible Worldcon is and how they don’t deserve money – Dave Freer can’t now claim that Jon was harmed by not having an opportunity to turn up. Nor, despite the offensive analogy used above, is there any evidence that Jon has IN ANYWAY been harmed. He’s fine.
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65 comments

  1. delagar

    This is nearly as good as when Brad decided people objecting to the bad behavior of the Puppies was exactly like those people loading him and his fellow conservatives onto cattle cars and driving them off to the camps.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Bonnie McDaniel

    joining the SFWA and Worldcon were publicity stunts. Everybody knows that.

    Indeed. Especially since Jon stated that he only wanted to join the SFWA to get his book the Hugo and Nebula it “deserved.”

    What an arrogant, boneheaded, selfish way to look at life.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lurkertype

      And also stupid: you don’t have to be in SFWA to get a Nebula. Your story doesn’t even have to be in a SFWA-eligible market.

      Of course SFWA is not WSFS, but I guess the three common letters are so confusing to pups they can’t understand this no matter how many times they’ve had this explained.

      Like

  3. Chris M

    I’m puzzled. What is the supposed substantive damage Worldcon has suffered. And what are people losing by not associating with del Arroz or that vile scumbag Freer and all the other puppy authors? By not buying their books?

    Liked by 2 people

    • delagar

      Over in their bubble, the claim being repeated — and repeated, and repeated — is that Worldcon, SFWA, and Tor books, of course, are all fading into obscurity, now that they (whoever “they” are) have withdrawn their support.

      No evidence exists to support this claim, and the “they” keeps shifting. It’s the writers of the MGC at this point, I guess, and VD’s minions.

      I think “trad” publishing is also supposed to be crumbling into dust, now that this group of writers has taken their ball and gone home.

      Liked by 3 people

      • delagar

        As to what we’re supposed to be suffering by being deprived of their company and their books, you’ve got me. Plenty of writers out there who got where they are by working hard at their writing, not by creating internet drama. I’ll buy their books instead.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Chris M

        So I was going through Scalzi’s archive and from what I read I wouldn’t be surprised if John could’ve already retired before his 13 book deal. And yet according to theses guys he’s this always so close to total failure.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Lurkertype

        Chris M, yesterday Scalzi tweeted that instead of changing the C: drive on his computer for More Power, he might just go ahead and buy a new computer instead, b/c it’s easier.

        That is not the move of a man who is short of money.

        Liked by 1 person

    • JJ

      Chris M.: I’m puzzled. What is the supposed substantive damage Worldcon has suffered.

      You see, there are now at least 200 Puppies who will not be going to Worldcon 76! This is a YUUUUUUGE financial loss for Worldcon!

      The fact that they never had any intention of going to Worldcon in the first place is utterly irrelevant, of course. 🙄

      Liked by 3 people

      • Lurkertype

        Yeah, I could announce I’m not going to DragonCon (or PuppiesNGunsCon), because SJW Reasons, but I’ve never been to one because money. So my “boycott” matters not a whit to them. I haven’t been to a con more than 2 hours drive from home since 2012, because money.

        Let’s face it, everyone who’s planning to go to San Jose (barring a very few who might come into unexpected money), already has at least a Supporting membership by now, 8 months out. I had a friend who was at KC buy my attending membership the morning after the vote result was announced.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lurkertype

        Cora: I suspect that puppy-free Worldcon would be a great selling point! Probably bring in some more members!

        Not sure why pups and scrappies spend so much time and effort on things they a) hate and b) think are dying anyway. It’s almost like they don’t have any rational reasons for it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Aaron Pound

        Not sure why pups and scrappies spend so much time and effort on things they a) hate and b) think are dying anyway.

        Because they don’t actually think those things are dying. The secret of the Pups and Scrappies is that they know none of their pronouncements concerning “dying traditional publishing”, “irrelevant Hugos”, and “dying Worldcon” are actually true. They also don’t hate those things. They are just mad they can’t control them or get adulation from them, and this enrages them, so they pretend that the things they desperately crave validation from are things that are in imminent danger of extinction.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Lurkertype

        Aaron:

        Aesop would have inquired as to the imagined sugar content of their grapes.

        I think some of them do hate bits of it, but still crave the adulation anyway. And they certainly want control over stuff, love or hate it. So they had to get Larry’s pal to gin up the Dragon “Awards”, where quality is last priority and sycophancy is first.

        I’d really like to see a year in which only DC members can nominate/vote, and they actually did. The queer PoC cosplay grrlz would come up with interesting works. I’d read/watch ’em.

        Liked by 1 person

      • kiptw

        It’s a forehead-smacker, but still not entirely surprising. Van Däniken’s theories always struck some folks (and me, when I heard their reasons) as racist: Those brown people couldn’t have made these fine things! It must have been enlightened aliens! A lot of the other weird occult trappings were at least slightly familiar to me. A friend of mine used to deliver a rap (this was in the late 70s) called “Nazi Flying Saucers from the Hollow Earth,” an outgrowth of his somewhat detached interest in weird theories. It’s a regular undercurrent in the Indiana Jones movies, which are sort of a “WHAT IF those crazy Nazi theories were right?”

        Wearying as it can be to see these creaky edifices of speculation looming ahead yet again, it’s even more tiresome to see them as hobby horses for the worst among us (us being ‘my’ ‘race’), knowing how hard it is to dislodge these props to their self-esteem, once they’ve found their way into teir heads.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Mark Hepworth

        “Those brown people couldn’t have made these fine things!”

        Oh yes, and see also the more mainstream tendency to interpretation of major non-Western achievements as something so exceptional that they weren’t actually representative. e.g. the pyramids represented some sort of herculean national effort, as opposed to being something a highly successful civilisation could do as a matter of routine. Or the Great Wall of China as this exceptional, one-off achievement rather than being a pretty sensible piece of military engineering that was of a piece with other projects such as the grand canal.

        Liked by 2 people

      • camestrosfelapton

        Or that technology must follow prescribed routes through history. e.g. the Incans must have been ‘backwards’ because they didn’t have the arch or use the wheel or have an alphabet whereas a lot of their technology was unobvious – in particular their agricultural know-how.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Contrarius

      I saw that article this morning. I think many of her points are spot on, but I disagree with her idea that reacting to bad behavior by certain conservatives is the same thing as discrimination.

      “Discrimination” means reacting badly to someone regardless of their actual behavior, but that isn’t what we’re doing when we condemn folks like JDA.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kat Goodwin

        She’s using discrimination somewhat satirically — the right calls it “discrimination” rather than reactions to and consequences for actual vicious behavior. She and we would more likely call the response blocking the harm of that behavior on others and their rights, but she’s going with the, if you’re going to call that discrimination, then yes, I am discriminating against your behavior towards others, etc. What she is mainly doing is rallying people to stand up against bad repressive behavior rather than wilt under claims that challenging the bad repressive behavior is discrimination. Kind of like slut walks. There are bad and good aspects to framing it that way, but it was the tolerance of intolerance issue and the ridiculous analogies the right tries to make about criticism and standing up for civil rights against their behavior being the same as genocide and serious suffering, etc., that seemed relevant to me for this post.

        Liked by 1 person

    • JJ

      I doubt that Damore’s suit is going to get very far. The memo of his which was made public is pretty damning as an argument against equal rights based on gender, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Google has other documentation of Damore’s misogyny as well.

      Like

      • Mark Hepworth

        I doubt it’s intended to get very far. It’ll be a cunning variation on alt-marketeering. The only question is whether he’s going to try to write The Damore Manifesto, or just aim to be a talking head on Fox.

        Liked by 1 person

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