When you profess to be a freethinker, it is a peculiar form of cowardice that has no shame at ridiculing Michele Bachmann1 with frat-boy sexual innuendo and peabrain insult over an unfortunate frankfurter incident, yet turns a deliberate blind eye to jaw-dropping idiocy when it’s perpetrated by one of your own.
But PZ Myers is a guy for whom double-, or even triple-, standards just don’t provide enough wiggle room. The man is a rainbow of expedient contradictions and knows no limits, always willing to conform to any ideology, providing it displays the correct (and mutually advantageous) rebellious and vengeful slave phenotype.
So when things are pretty slow over at the baboon board, a guy as resourceful as the Naked One – who never sees problems, only opportunities – takes full advantage and usefully fills the void by reaffirming his toilet slavery and resurrecting the carcass of the atheist misogyny meme for the umpteenth time –
My immediate thought on being given the link was that this is rehash of a replay of a regurgitation, and it is in more ways than one. The article referenced that has PZ licking the girls latrines clean all over again is from The Guardian September 26 – Why the New Atheism is a boys’ club by Victoria Bekiempis. The fact that the article is recycled filler for The Guardian itself on a slow content day eludes the Naked One in his enthusiasm to please.
It was originally published in BITCH MAGAZINE way back in May under a different, less eye catching headline, The Unbelievers. The article was well and truly pre-elevator idiocy, and does not feature a gratuitous graphic of Dawkins like The Guardian one does, y’know, to feed the controversy.
And as for the ‘zine itself, well, it’s quite insulting to the Pudgy Pink Princess – she does not merit even a single mention anywhere in the entire BitchMedia site (even after all her theatrics). And skepchick.org gets mentioned *twice* – once in article comment thread by an unverified user that looks like comment spam trying to thieve BM traffic, and again as a site some other member happens to read. But that’s it.
To add insult to insult, just randomly clicking around BM, it appears to be a ‘zine that refuses to wallow in self-pity and finger-point while howling how unfair the planet is (though I could be wrong – I haven’t studied it in any great depth). In fact, it seems to be mostly run by uppity, independent women that stand on their own hind legs, have no need for white knights like Myers and seem to have a solid DIY ethic. Obviously gender traitors.
The salt in the wound is that the article overall is quite rational and objective, refuses to indulge exclusively in the blame and victim game, and worst of all, suggests positive actions to take instead of just sitting around and whining –
So let’s reframe. For every mention of Hitchens, counter with a mention of Hecht. For every theory that male atheists are purer or more confrontational, let’s ask why we gender the philosophy of nonbelief to begin with. The ranks of atheists who don’t fit the popular profile are increasing, and with more attention paid to who isn’t a white male author with a fancy-pants book contract, the public face of nonbelief may begin to look as diverse as atheism’s adherents actually are.
Fucking outrageous. It’s almost as though they believe they’re equals that can stand up for themselves.
Of course the Baboon King does what he does best – applies his convenience store view of reality to the whole piece, tosses out all the bits that deviate from orthodox ideology, and keeps the remaining segments that squeal exclusively about sexism – approximately 10% of the whole article. The rest, you see, simply doesn’t matter. It won’t do to mention it and it won’t earn any drunken Skepchick happy snaps at the next conference…
And the Baboon King’s commentary, as usual, only makes bad citation even worse, starting with its opening hackneyed bon mot –
It’s rather like a case of acne; we’ve got it, people are pointing it out, and we’re trying out denial as a solution.
But vat we really haff iz ze
Jewish white male problem unt it demands ze FINAL SOLUTION!
He does this shit with a straight face. Unbelievable.
I know what happens next. Hackles rise, men get all defensive, and get huffy and angry while simultaneously denying that they have a pimple and how rude of those nasty feminists (said with a sneer) to point it out.
And so it grinds on. Not only does the record never change, neither does the track it’s stuck on.The man is incapable of framing any kind of reality outside of a brutal victim / bully closed loop system. At all. It reminds me of an observation made by Peter Sloterdijk in his Critique of Cynical Reason –
The violent, antirationalistic impulse in Western countries is reacting to an intellectual state of affairs in which all thinking has become strategy.
Myers and the gaggle of victim feminists, who’s skirts he clings to like a frightened child, have spent so much time wallowing in self-fabricated fear and despair that they are simply unable to deal with anything that transpires in the real world without framing it as some binary, good versus evil conflict. Their entire reality is a perpetual state of war, all communication is loaded with either jingoism or menace, every action and reaction carries with it some kind of strategic intent. Neutrality simply does not exist. It is a downward spiral into persecution paranoia.
And they claim they can enlighten us. Not only that, they also have some kind of Manifest Destiny to do so by force.
I won’t even go into Myers’ absolutely nauseating closing paragraph, but I for one don’t know how it could be possible to get any more condescending or demeaning – the one thing it clearly does imply is that Myers is the only man on the planet that seems to know what women want. I’ll leave that to you ladies to deal with…
The rest descends into some kind of derangement arms race in the comments section. Non-exhaustive sampling, there’s only so much of this crud you can view in one sitting –
Ed Brayton says:
Diversity really is a good thing in this kind of community because it allows us to benefit from the perspectives of people whose experiences probably don’t match our own in many ways. [link]
“Diversity”. From a representative mix of middle class, white, North Americans from the authoritarian, over-socialised left. Off to a flying start.
The Naked Emperor says:
I’m not going to crack down on the comments any more than I already have. It is what it is, and I know that some people get turned off by the hurly-burly, but others find it liberating and entertaining.
I feel no responsibility to change it. Pharyngula is not atheism. People who find these threads confrontational and obnoxious can and should go to another site and find their joy there — I feel no desire to consume the whole of the internets. [link]
All said without sniggering. Again. Iron discipline. Well, “not going to crack down” is not quite the same as “not maintaining blacklists“… technically, the former may not be the same kind of fib as the latter. Nor is “desire to consume the whole of the internets” the same as wanting to control what is allowed to be said on it.
And this is just Academy Award material –
Hillary Rettig says:
PZ… I understand the reasoning for your laissez faire approach – and it has been spectacularly successful – but the punching-bag quality to a lot of the threads, plus the childish mean spiritedness and “gotchas” are discouraging to MANY people who find such dialogues either outright scary or a waste of time (or both).
As far as I can tell, the popular feminist blogs all set much stronger explicit rules for their commenters, with the explicit goal of providing a safe and welcoming space. [link]
Lady, you can teach chumpy a thing or two about straight faced delivery. That’s hot-coffee-sinus-douche material. There is nothing quite as safe as an environment where all contrarian opinion is purged by default.
Lastly, here is where it just stops being funny. This is like Mao’s China or the former Soviet bloc –
Yes, I know I’ll probably get called an MRA for daring to come to the defense of a couple of men [link]
Fear of being dragged away to the gulags… For the crime of defending Hitchens and Stephen Fry, thereby by risking being branded as someone who defends men’s rights…
This is what secularism is being reduced to. It’s like observing an alien species. There are over 500 more equally eye opening glimpses into the Borg mind that constitutes the baboon board. Read at own risk.
Awful. Simply fucking awful. And the turntable will grind on…
1 – The baboon board thread in question is well worth reading if you’re a neuro-masochist. Everything is “me-too!” parroting of Myers for the first 90 comments (including from fembots), but at comment #91 the first stern sensitivity lecture is delivered, and it’s aboutface 180° as the admonishments begin, forcing the Naked One to censor his own post. Marching in unison with a precison that puts North Korea to shame. “Freethoughtblogs”. Ayup. Such uniform independent thinking is a sight to behold. Discussed previously –