A curious fact about Vox Day is that in his list of the 10 greatest novels, his number two pick is Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco. Not only that, it is a novel he has mentioned several times and Eco is one of his favourite authors and one he has made the effort to read in Italian. He has a particular reason for liking it more than Eco’s other novels:
“Perhaps my subscription to the conspiracy theory of history is one reason I rate Foucault’s Pendulum so highly, but I stand firmly by my high regard for Eco.”https://web.archive.org/web/20210216174524/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2013/10/top-10-novels-list.html
If you haven’t read the book, it is a long and complex work. Central to the story is a group of editors at an Italian publishing house who cynically create a conspiracy theory (lumping in the Templars, the Holy Grail etc) using a computer to spew out random, unconnected claims but then get caught up in their own deception. By the end of this saga I’m calling Debarkle, Vox Day would have made himself the chief editor of his own publishing house and would be heavily promoting a conspiracy theory sourced from random statements on an anonymous web forum. On the way, Vox Day will promote extreme ideas in particular about women, race and immigration.
Like the proceeding chapter, this chapter will follow Vox up to around the mid-2000s. From there, the rest of the story (as far as it is relevant) will be carried in the main chapters as various characters react to events. I will be drawing on three main sources and any unreferenced statement will be either my opinion or drawn from one of these:
- Vox Day’s Wikipedia page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vox_Day
- Vox Day’s verified page on his own version of Wikipedia called ‘Infogalactic’: https://infogalactic.com/info/Verified:Vox_Day
- The Rational Wiki page on Vox Day https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Theodore_Beale
A general content warning applies throughout. Day has expressed many views that I know readers will find confronting and disturbing.
Vox Day was born in 1968, making him just under a year older than John Scalzi. He claims ancestors who fought in the US Revolutionary War and a great-grandfather who was involved with the Mexican revolutionary Pancho Villa as well as Native American ancestry.
Day’s full name is Theodore Robert Beale and his father, Robert Beale was the former CEO of a computer hardware company specialising in networking and communication. In 2006, Robert Beale was indicted for tax evasion after adopting a tax-protestor ideology. He was convicted in 2008 with the added complication of some of his supporters planning to kidnap and run their own trial of the judge.
Day grew up in Minnesota and attended the private Christian school, Minnehaha Academy for his school years and then went on to study at the private liberal arts college Bucknell University in Pennsylvania where he studied Japanese, history and economics. Perhaps growing up with a father who was in a technical field but Day personally having less capability in STEM fields and more in the creative arts and humanities, led to Day feeling the need to show proof of his intelligence. Sometime in 1988, Vox Day met Donald Trump.?
In the early 1990s Day put his energies into two creative fields. Firstly he helped form the techno band Psykosonik. The band was not without some success with some charting singles. The bands lyrics would touch on religion, technology and dystopian themes.
“Digital disbeliever, there’s a storm in the world tonighthttps://genius.com/Psykosonik-silicon-jesus-lyrics 
Digital disbeliever, now it’s time for you to come inside
Well, you can find the power, it’s behind your eyes
Touch the chalice to your skull and enter paradise”
Day’s second venture was a video game company called Fenris Wolf. Not unlike, Psykosonik, Day’s video game company enjoyed some moderate success. However, the company closed in 1999 after a legal dispute with its retail publisher GT Interactive Software. Beale moved on to other things including a Christian fantasy called Eternal Warriors: War in Heaven Book 1 under the name Theodore Beale (sequels followed in 2002 and 2006).
Day’s other venture was as a columnist, first reviewing video games for a Minnesotan newspaper, much later (2008) as a book reviewer at the fantasy fanzine Black Gate as well as on his own blog. However, the high profile gig for Vox (under that name) was with World Net Daily.
World Net Daily is one of a multitude of conservative news/opinion websites that began in the late 1990s. Fuelled initially by a mix of paleo-conservatism and opposition to President Bill Clinton, the Southern Poverty Law Centre would later describe WND as:
“WorldNetDaily is an online publication founded and run by Joseph Farah that claims to pursue truth, justice and liberty. But in fact, its pages are devoted to manipulative fear-mongering and outright fabrications designed to further the paranoid, gay-hating, conspiratorial and apocalyptic visions of Farah and his hand-picked contributors from the fringes of the far-right and fundamentalist worlds.”https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/group/worldnetdaily 
Vox Day’s dad, tax protestor Robert Beale, was an investor and board member of WND. Initially, Day’s WND column was a tech/IT column. His posts from August 2001 covered new compact memory cards for cameras and the utility of USB ports for your computer . Day’s next column was scheduled for September 14.
“In response to a number of questions inspired by last week’s column, we were working on a piece related to PC security, specifically the sort offered to one’s e-mail communications by various encryption technologies, when we were interrupted by the horrifying events of Tuesday. The fatal hijackings and subsequent media response has been difficult to dismiss from our mind, so we have tabled the usual technology review for a week in favor of some reflections on these recent events.”https://www.wnd.com/2001/09/10850/ 
The thrust of the article was mainly a right-libertarian stance to the horrific terror attack, i.e. don’t rush into giving more power to the FBI and other agencies or curtail personal liberties of Americans. However, it was directly in favour of military retaliation, which was a broadly mainstream position.
By 2002 the prospect of war with Iraq was high. Vox Day was broadly in favour of attacking Iraq but more on the general principle of Islamophobia and contempt for France and Germany.
“Since we’re doing this war anyhow, I sincerely hope we do it without the blessing of the U.N. and the hapless gang of Euroweenies. And if we need a few extra troops to occupy Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia and any other former colony we happen to scoop up in the process, let’s pull them out of Germany. If nothing else, it would be worth it just for the look of horror on French faces when they realize that Uncle Sam won’t be around to keep the Hun at their feet any longer.”https://www.wnd.com/2002/09/15370/ content warning for Islamophobic pro-war comments
I haven’t systematically surveyed all Vox Day’s early columns at WND but I believe that after August 2001, the column shifted primarily to political commentary and the tech stuff either dwindled or went entirely. The twin themes initially were anti-Islam and anti-women. Articles with provocative titles like “The Morality of Rape” or “Maybe Bush is Hitler” or “Why Women Can’t Think”.
Vox Day had aspirations to be taken seriously as a fantasy writer. He had not had positive experiences with organised fandom. He attended the 1997 Minnesota Science Fiction Society convention (aka Minicon) where the guests of honour included Algis Budrys, the founder of Tor books Tom Doherty, as well as two up-and-coming editors at Tor, Teresa Nielsen Hayden and Patrick Nielsen Hayden. Day claims to have decided then to never associate with fandom, saying in 2015 about the experience:
“I turned my back on your freakish community and everything it stood for as soon as I had the opportunity to see it clearly for myself at Minicon in 1997. I dutifully did my panels and never went to another SF convention or attended another SF-related event ever again.”https://web.archive.org/web/20201108160521/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2015/08/those-who-serve-and-know-not.html content warning for multiple issues 
However, there was another route for Vox Day into organised science fiction communities. Sometime in the early 2000’s he joined the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. In 2004, he was selected to join the jury for the SFWA’s Nebula Awards…but that is another story.
Next time: we need to double back and look at the SFWA
Warning: many of the links are to blogs which feature far-right statements either in the content of the post or in the comment section, including transphobic, misogynistic, homophobic, racist and specifically anti-Semitic comments. Links are included for context and verification but I’m not recommending that people follow them.
-  https://web.archive.org/web/20210216174524/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2013/10/top-10-novels-list.html
-  https://web.archive.org/web/20201108101330/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2016/08/assimilationist-liars.html
-  https://web.archive.org/web/20150413182314/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2014/08/enoch-powell-still-right.html “My grandmother is the daughter of a Mexican revolutionary and the Indian woman he married after he fled Pancho Villa’s assassins” Note: I’m also not trying to link to provocative columns to provide citations for factual claims about Day but I don’t have to *try* – the above three are a not atypical selection of columns from his blog.
-  https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Robert_Beale
-  I’m not going to provide links to every time Vox Day has discussed his IQ. I’m speculating here but I think it is reasonable. Likewise, Day has talked about meeting Trump on more than one occasion but given the volume of Trump content on his website, it is difficult to sift through. This link mentions the meeting in passing https://web.archive.org/web/20170720014150/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2016/11/mailvox-election-and-non-problem-of-evil.html
-  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psykosonik “Psykosonik was featured on the Mortal Kombat: Annihilation soundtrack”
-  Three members of the band are credited with the lyrics, so what proportion is Vox Day’s I don’t know
-  http://www.pretty-terrible.com/bad-life-decisions-make-me-read-theodore-beale/ Natalie Luhrs read the book in 2015 for charity.
-  https://www.blackgate.com/the-appeal-of-adventure-fantasy/
-  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WorldNetDaily
-  not to get ahead of the main story line but WND was a major promoter of the ‘birther’ false claims about Barack Obama
-  https://conwebwatch.tripod.com/stories/2004/update061604.html notably at that time “Vox Day” and “Theodore Beale” were not publicly connected identities, so the article linked here is arguably a limited doxxing. However, as Vox Day now publicly connects both his names, I don’t see any current ethical issues linking to it.
-  https://www.wnd.com/2001/08/10662/ and https://www.wnd.com/2001/08/10566/
-  I’m linking directly to WND rather than archive because I was having issues with WND archiving on the Wayback Machine. I don’t recommend following the links as it provides ad revenue for WND.
-  see note 14
-  content warning https://www.wnd.com/2005/12/33737/ and if you don’t want to read it does say that rape is immoral but disputes what counts as rape.
-  https://www.wnd.com/2004/01/22717/ Day concludes Bush isn’t Hitler but because the USA under bush is “semi-socialist” and because Bush isn’t doing enough to roll that back and because socialists are Nazis (a common right wing claim), that maybe that makes Bush Hindenburg.
-  https://www.wnd.com/2005/02/29022/ overt ideological misogyny
-  https://web.archive.org/web/20201108160521/http://voxday.blogspot.com/2015/08/those-who-serve-and-know-not.html
-  https://mnstf.org/minicon32/
-  also the post skips us further ahead into the narrative. I assume, given the date that he was promoting the Rebel Moon Rising game from his company and the novelisation written by Bruce Bethke.