Sometimes a song stays at the top of the charts so long it seems to become a permanent fixture. For such a long time Elsa’s signature song “Let it Go” from Frozen was the song that the alt-right loved to hate, whether it was this blog’s go-to rabid Vox Day or this blog’s go-to pseudo-intellectual Jordan “nope lobster” Peterson.
But finally, there appears to be a contender! From the hagiographic biopic musical of a historical racist and exploiter P.T.Barnum aka “The Greatest Showman”, the song “This is Me” has upset Vox Day with feelings.
The song can be seen here:
I should note that I don’t think much of the song or the film. The song is representative of the main approach to the music and the plot – start dejected/maudlin and then shift gradually to triumphalism. The body-positivity message is repeatedly overwhelmed with a Horatio Alger myth of hard work and believing in yourself etc etc. to overcome adversity. I didn’t feel stirred or moved by it but I’m a soulless monster who lives in a cave in a dark forest.
“My first response to hearing the song and seeing the video was to feel the profound and programmed emotional stirring. My second response was to put that emotional effect in intellectual context, and think, kill it with fire. And my third response was to reflect upon how good these evil rhetoricians are, and realize how far we have to go in order to effectively counteract their influence on the mass culture.
Don’t be surprised if you find yourself feeling oddly defensive of the song. That defensiveness you are feeling is testimony to the power of the rhetoric. But review the lyrics and analyze the imagery. It is powerful cultural programming, but it loses its power and becomes transparent when viewed through coldly dialectic analytical eye. “Reaching for the sun” indeed…..”
Zoiks! His reaction appears to be genuine and I’m forced to reconsider whether a song that discombobulates the alt-right so effectively that it sends them into a struggle with their own emotions, can be all that bad.
Maybe because it has some elements which are positive but wrapped up in a message of centre-right of self-esteem it hits a nerve. This is not unlike “Let It Go” where the self-affirmation by Elsa is nearly-but-not-quite the same ideology/pseudo-psychology of Peterson, that they find it more viscerally unsettling because it is a woman who is affirming her individualist independence from society.
Anyway…Vox then heads off into more alarming rhetoric of his own:
“Just remember that we’re the ones with the guns. We’re the side with no reason for shame. We are servants of the King and the defenders of the West. They know they are guilty, they know they are damned, and they are openly flaunting their sin. They are warriors and they are at war with our God, our civilization, our faith, and our nation.”
The takes a detour into anti-semitism and homophobia and then declares:
“Their satanic hymns will not save them from the justice of the Almighty God in the end.”
As you know, I’m not religious but I enjoy theology. If I was religious I really would have to wonder what god it is that Vox Day worships. There was an earlier piece a few days ago where Vox said something unintentionally revealing and disturbing once you pause and think about his position on many issues: (direct link, archive link)
“Here is a reliable heuristic for evil: does it justify, rationalize, excuse, defend, encourage, advocate, or require sex with children in any way, openly or covertly, directly or indirectly? Then it is evil, topped by an evil sauce, with a side of evil.”
Does that strike anybody else as deeply unself-aware of things he has actually said?
Vox Day has repeatedly cast doubt on the claims of victims of sexual assault and abuse. For example this comment from is pickup-artistry site in 2013:
“Sexual abuse is a problem. But as is often the case, the overreaction to it has created problems of its own, as children have become aware that they can create massive problems for adults by falsely accusing them. Perhaps the awareness that they run the risk of bankruptcy if they don’t control their progeny will convince parents that their little angels may, in fact, be little devils in disguise.”
He has repeatedly opposed Codes of Conducts generically for example saying:
“This is just straight up thought, speech, and behavioral policing, and it explicitly goes in one direction, the direction that provides the SJWs with political control of the organization.”
…about a code that sought to prevent:
Physical contact and simulated physical contact (eg, textual descriptions like “hug” or “backrub”) without consent or after a request to stop. Threats of violence, both physical and psychological. Incitement of violence towards any individual, including encouraging a person to commit suicide or to engage in self-harm. Deliberate intimidation. Stalking or following. Harassing photography or recording, including logging online activity for harassment purposes. Unwelcome sexual attention, including gratuitous or off-topic sexual images or behaviour. Pattern of inappropriate social contact, such as requesting/assuming inappropriate levels of intimacy with others.
Of course that code didn’t expressily mention child protection, but don’t forget Vox’s caveat: ‘openly or covertly, directly or indirectly’.
Even his much vaunted campaigns against pedophiles is something he primarily uses to attack critics, push homphobia or demonise immigrants. The conspiracy theories he promulgates (and which his vandalised version of Wikipedia promotes) serves to hide the danger and prevelance of sexual abuse and exploitation of children.
I don’t know. It’s probably just routine malice mixed with incompotence and confusion about his own semiotics. Maybe it is just his tendency to mix his own messages (like attempting to ironically surrounded himself with pseudo-satanic imagery while styling himself as an evangelical Christian) but given the whole of the picture, I keep returning to the question: if Vox thinks gods are real what kind of god is it that he worships and would deem itself happy with his efforts?
https://voxday.blogspot.com.au/2015/09/weaponized-codes.html and yes, the bits I quoted were not the only thing in that code of conduct but they were parts that Vox also quoted and he clearly objected to them being in the code. }
[ETA: sorry that got a bit darker at the end. For added amusement, Vox trying to get his minions to understand his point in the comments is funny in places.
“It isn’t about YOU. It isn’t about YOUR reaction. Why is that so damned difficult for so many of you to understand? You do not win by holding your ground, you win by taking the enemy’s ground.
FFS, next I’m going to have to write fucking musicals. I don’t want to write fucking musicals.”
Gosh, why IS it so difficult for a bunch of alt-right/MRAs to understand that it isn’t about them and their reaction? 🙂
Also, the witchfinder general of SF has stepped into the discussion: http://www.brianniemeier.com/2018/04/what-were-really-up-against.html
“The Disney paypigs who continue subjecting their children to satanically inspired princess movies no doubt blissfully hum this song to themselves as they wait in the drive-thru at Starbucks. But among the disaffected engineer types who, while smarter, tend to make a vice of excess pragmatism, the equal and opposite problem emerged.”
? No, I’m not sure what he is trying to say either. ]