Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Reduxing Vox Day: Post-Nomination Prediction Check

The first Hugo awards were presented in 1953, which means this venerable award lasted a full 63 years before it was irreversibly tainted by Space Raptor Butt Invasion.

Last year, I shifted from an Anti-Puppy position to a sort of general Sadness. But in interest of keeping things interesting, I'm going to continue this series from the same Anti-Puppy viewpoint I had when I started Killing Vox Day. After all, the question of how one might stop Vox is infinitely more interesting than 'yup, there goes Vox being Vox again.'

So let's review a few of my falsifiable statements to see how they stack up. This will allow us to do two things. First, we can all appreciate how much of a brilliant predictor I am. Second, we can examine that perennial question: is Vox Day a legitimate threat or a paper tiger? I have said (over and over again) that he is a legitimate threat. The Establishment has said (over and over again) that he is a "toddler." You be the judge.

From Reduxing Vox Day: Best Novelette

Shifting more towards Distributed Thoughtware, I expect Gay Raptor Gate to gain the most traction of any manufactured controversy at the 2016 Hugos. File 770 refusing to turn down a nomination? Humorous, but not damning. Nominating Video Games for Best Dramatic Presentation (Long-Form)? Intriguing, but not controversial enough. Dinosaur Sodomy in Space? Now that grabs headlines.

As expected, the File 770 controversy disappeared fairly quickly and none of the video games made the ballot (disqualified?). But Dinosaur Sodomy still has legs. We have not yet reached peak SRBI.

There's one last way that this works for Vox, and that's the rhetorical level. First, it will be used to argue that the Rabids are a powerful voting block or to argue that the Rabids aren't block voters. Think about it:
SRBI Gets the Nomination: "We are legion! We are strong! We can get Gay Space Dinosaurs on the ballot!"
SRBI Doesn't Get the Nomination: "What block voting? If we were block voting, Gay Space Dinosaurs would be on the ballot!"

As predicted, the Rabids are positively crowing about getting SRBI on the ballot. No one can claim they simply "ran in front of the parade" when it's a Gay Space Dinosaur parade. I mean, in fairness to Scalzi, Vox nominated many works that were essentially shoe-ins, and I assume that that was intentional. But you can't say that about SRBI.

It is impossible to prove the second prediction, but I assume there would have been some sort of fall-back position.

If the 2016 Hugos are the Year of the Gay Space Raptor (ie, the biggest talking point and what people remember it for), Vox knows what he's doing.

This one is still up in the air. The Establishment is maintaining poker face about SRBI so far (John Scalzi's article being the prime example), but given their past behavior, it's only a matter of time before someone broaches it publicly (thus allowing everyone else to discuss it publicly). 

There's a fascinating sub-topic here about the "pshaw! The puppies are beneath us! *swish*" attitude prevalent on the nets today, but it's a topic for another day. Suffice to say: they're counting on E Pluribus Hugo to save their bacon, and that's enough to maintain discipline for now. I'll be generous and give them a week before discipline starts to crack.

1). If there are more Rabid Puppies in 2016 than 2015, Vox Day is a threat. If there are less Rabid Puppies, Vox Day is not a threat.

Contrary to the expectations of some, the No Awards campaign did nothing to slow Rabid Puppy growth or in any way curb their influence. They have a bigger piece of the pie than ever. Vox Day is a threat.

2. If SJWs Always Lie expands Vox Day's reach, he is a threat. If SJWs Always Lie only sells to the usual suspects, Vox Day is not a threat. If it is a flop, Vox Day is a joke. 

SJWs Always Lie was definitively not a flop. But did it expand Vox's reach? It did get him a Hugo nomination. I'm going to argue 'yes,' but that's based more on a feeling than hard data. It's impossible to say whether or not SJWs directly contributed to this spike in blog traffic or that interview or opened the door to that collaboration. This may have been a poor predictor, since 'flop' is the only truly falsifiable one.

I'm going to update this one:

-If SJWs Always Lie wins a Rocket or second places to No Award, the Rabid Puppies have achieved total victory over the Hugos.

-If any other Castalia House work wins Best Related Work or second places to No Award, then the Rabid Puppies have obtained limited victory over the Hugos (although frankly, the prospect of Safe Space as Rape Room winning is perhaps more tantalizing than SJWs).

-Finally, if all Castalia House works are relegated to the bottom of the list (ie, no Castalia House work places higher than a non-Castalia House work), the Rabid Puppies have lost the 2016 Hugos. This, more than anything else, would prove than the Puppies are only good at gaming the nomination process.

3). If the 2016 Hugos are another round of No Awards, Vox Day is a threat. If the 2016 Hugos are awarded normally, Vox Day is not a threat. If an open Puppy wins a Rocket in 2016, Vox day is The Threat.
The only thing we know for sure is that the Hugos will not be awarded normally. Another round of No Awards seems most likely, but we can't rule out an open Rabid Puppy victory. And if that open Rabid Puppy victory should be Space Raptor Butt Invasion or SJWs Always Lie, then God have mercy on our souls.

So looking at those falsifiable predictions, I'd say that Vox and myself are doing pretty well. I nailed 3 predictions, 2 predictions are still up in the air, and 1 prediction had poor criteria. Whatever you think of my theories, you sure can't argue with my accuracy. *smarm smarm chin-stroke*

Since this is a war-game and I'm taking the role of an anti-Puppy strategist, next time we'll look at some ideas for opposing the Puppy Threat. Unfortunately, that probably won't be up until next week due to work obligations. Oh well.


Well, fuck, it looks like I gave the Puppy Kickers too much credit. Discipline in not taking about SRBI has been cracked, and should be non-existent by the end of the week. 2016 will be the Year of the Gay Space Raptor. 


  1. I'm glad you're at least puppy-understanding now, because you seem like a decent fellow and watching your own side train-wreck in a perfectly predictable pattern is intensely painful.

    Newsweek went full space raptor. And they all keep making it worse by insisting on describing the Hugo's as 'most prestigious' right before seguing to Chuck Tingle's masterpiece. It's amazing.

    I confess, I trust Vox and knew he would deliver top kek but like you, I thought it would take some time to snowball. But then, that's why I'm just vile and faceless and Vox is the Supreme Dark Lord.

    1. I was half expecting SRBI to take off a little bit more before it got the nomination. It's just such a juicy topic, and if we've learned anything from this election, it's that gossip trumps discipline.

      I gave them points for maintaining discipline because they held out fairly well before the nomination. I'm guessing that getting completely trampled in the nomination is what broke them.

  2. "Contrary to the expectations of some, the No Awards campaign did nothing to slow Rabid Puppy growth or in any way curb their influence."

    Speaking as a continuing Sad Pup, I have no idea why anyone would think that torching five entire categories --- including works the torchbearers agreed were worthy --- AND slapping an asterisk on each and every nomination to boot! was going to have any other effect.

    Indeed, it's what Vox said he was counting on to increase the Rabids for the following year. It's done just that. This is what comes of substituting a belief system for discernible facts.

    The incessant "all Puppies are racist/sexist/homophobic" routine also radicalized many Pups who were otherwise perfectly willing to have a discussion. It became quite evident there was none to be had.

    In the end, the Hugo-Nots managed to effect the literary equivalent of the US military's seizure of Hue: "We had to burn the city to save it". And they haven't achieved that much of a victory so far, either.

    1. The most tone-deaf part was the attempts to build bridges with the Puppies. After the No Award debacle (and the GRRM secret awards debacle), asking us to condemn the Rabids to be accepted back into the fold was not going to end well. It made it clear that this, to an extent, is about submission.

  3. I've been pointing this out (to no avail) for years: in a cultural war nobody dies, so every "victory" just makes your opponents more motivated. The triumph of the SJWs begat the Sad Puppies. The unexpected success of the Puppies begat the Asterisk brigade. Their unseemly gloating unleashed the Supreme Dark Lord . . .

    If someone with influence would actually try to make peace and genuinely reach out, instead of giving in to passive-aggressive snark and point-scoring, this all might damp down.

    But it won't.

    1. Bingo. At this point it's "openly accept ideological diversity" or "there is only war." I prefer the first, but there are plenty who are eager for the second.

    2. The other side has made it perfectly clear that they do not consider the first an option. For our side, this leaves us the options of complete surrender or complete war. I choose the second.

  4. If someone with influence would actually try to make peace and genuinely reach out, instead of giving in to passive-aggressive snark and point-scoring, this all might damp down.

    That requires us to have some kind of common ground and common goals. I'm not aware of any with the likes of Scalzi, Sandifer, the Nielsen-Haydens, etc.

    1. Enjoying Science Fiction?

      Ib4 'they don't actually like Sci-Fi.'

    2. If they truly loved science fiction, they could have made some kind of peace with the Sads. If they truly loved science fiction, they wouldn't be applauding crap, non-SF, non-stories like "If You Were a Dinosaur".

    3. Are Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead great science fiction stories? Is Dune a great science fiction story?

    4. Or, there is a conflict between their love of Sci-Fi and their love of Leftism.

      I assume there are things in your life you care more about than Sci-Fi? And I assume that if they came into conflict, you would sacrifice Sci-Fi.

      Well, they are willing to sacrifice Ender and Paul Atreides when they come into conflict with the latest dogmas of the Left.

    5. Yes, there are things in my life that I love more than science fiction. The difference is that these things are not totalizing, all-devouring things. My Christian faith does not demand that I compel everyone else to participate, merely that I myself refrain from that which is wicked and try to do what good I can in the world. Leftism is all-devouring. There is nothing they are content to leave alone because they believe they have the ability and the obligation to make a utopia here on Earth. And anything which does not conform to their view of the world must be destroyed.

      You can see that this is not the Christian attitude simply by observing that we still have a great deal of the Greco-Roman mythology and the philosophy of Plato, Aristotle, etc.

    6. We could bicker the extent of Christ's demands over our lives, and we could bicker over Leftism's demands, but the point stands: they love Sci-Fi, but are willing to sacrifice it to their false gods.

      Did Moloch worshipers love their children? Yes, and that is why the sacrifice had power.

    7. Yep. I've never had to sacrifice my love of SF for my faith, for my family, or for my child. Shoot, our Bible Study group are the Gospel Trekkers (Nerds for Jesus!)

      Religious people do SF and fandom just fine.

      SJW cliques? Not so much.

    8. Would you stop watching an otherwise excellent Sci-Fi film if it had a graphic sex scene? With the titties flopping about and the sheet-clutching and moaning. An explicit gay sex scene? An explicit gay sex scene between a priest and Jesus?

    9. I seem to be the only right-winger in the world who both likes "If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love" and thinks it's good (different things). But I do agree, it is not sf, and it is not a story. It shouldn't have been Hugo nominated, for those reasons.

  5. I managed to write a very long piece how frustrated as an atheist Leftist when self-described Christians drone on blogs how I am the undying evil of destruction of SF in the altar of Leftism. Then I inadvertently deleted it on mistake. I'm trying to retype my main points:

    I don't like the holier-than-thou SJW orthodoxy, I read rationalist blogs. Especially I don't like the thought police -like features. I also have been a card carrying social democrat since 2011, and I believe in the Enlightenment. I don't like blatant message-fics that insult my intelligence, but on the other hand, I do like literature that manages to explore those issues intelligently and imaginatively. (Most don't.) I didn't pay much attention to Hugoes before the Puppies debacle, so I don't know which kind was being complained about, but I'm very disappointed if the latter doesn't count as pure SF because of "leftist false gods".

    So why on Earth start a culture war-ish slate campaign if you don't want a war, just be "accepted in SF community" in the first place. Because it sure looked like "fandom is controlled by communist conspiracy because books I don't like don't win". I don't know the Worldcon fandom well enough to know if the orthodoxy persecuted Correia and right-ist writers (that stuff happens), but as it played out, I don't think the Puppies campaign helped any cause at all, except warfare and mutual hatred.

    I think the reason didn't have much anything to do with SF or Hugo, but all about how the political culture war is and was already thing, so everybody already is entrenched and convinced about who are their enemies (and allies, like Vox Day).

    For example, I found this blog when someone linked to the old 2015 posts (they were interesting). But if I bookmark this blog as it is, I'll find . I'm not saying one should censor anything, I'm providing how this culture war plays out in the blogosphere: I doubt I'd like to read a bunch of Puppy comments that feel like a personal attack (and no, I for one don't want war, I advocate for some personal liberties and freedoms and government social policies and reasonable regulation and that people would be nice to each other, and occasionally read SF literature) and make me feel obliged to write even more aggressive responses to defend even the basic fact that me and my viewpoints exist.

    1. [Sorry posted a draft comment, some words were missing in the final paragraph:]

      *But if I bookmark this blog as it is, I'll find [comments like above]. I'm not saying one should censor anything, I'm providing [an example] how this culture war plays out in the blogosphere:

    2. The Campaign to End Puppy-Related Sadness originated to prove that there was a bias against non-leftist and non-clique member writers by the 1%-ers of science fiction. Just having one publishing house editor win the best editor award 10 years in a row ought to have been a warning sign. Correia ran it twice, proved his point, and gave it a rest.

      By year three, however, Brad Torgersen decided to retool it with the goal of recruiting old-fen (like me) who had GAFIA-ted and youngsters who were put off by the "grey goo" preaches and/or need to kiss the ring of the folks who'd colonised SF. He opened his blog to comments, chatted with other authors who shared his worldview: "human wave" SF, message only AFTER story (if at all) and came up with a list of recommended reads of stories, authors, and publishers which while still meeting the --admittedly -- low bar of recent (and I cannot emphasize this enough) would not have gotten nominated by the torlings

      "Read the reccys," he urged, "Pay your $40, and vote your conscience."

      John C. Wright (former Locus Magazine cover boy) had 10 years worth of blackisted short fiction out that year in two anthologies. His fans--many of whom discovered him for the first time thanks to SP3, went nuts in the nominations had the dubious pleasure of reading reviews calling his work sludge by the same people who'd praised it to the skies prior to being outed as a "puppy" and a Catholic. Sometimes it was even the same book.

      We weren't starting a "war," nor did we vote a "slate" - but we did - old timers and young runs - use a list as a starting point. Frex, I nominated about 1/2 "puppy" (CtEPRS or Rabid) recs.

      In a clique-driven increasingly insular award process, where 20 (yes!) votes can take a nomination, the overlap in people voting even 1/3 of the recc'd titles because. "Hey! I enjoyed that. And it's as least as good as the wreck that got nominated for ++groupthink or author-is-connected (or both)" swept the nominations.

      That's when co-coordinated hit pieces appeared in mass media outlets across the country. This year's Hugo is the aftermath.

      What you're doing is called "victim blaming"

      But I'm not a CHORF, so I don't blame you. You were lied to across the board.

      Whether or not you operate as a useful idiot is up to you

  6. The blame game is counter-productive, because the Other side always started it. The Rational understand this. But let's break it down.

    For example - no one is personally attacking you. No one even knows who you are. You're anonymous! As a Rationalist, you already know this on an intellectual level.

    But you also know that people ARE attacking you, by attacking your identity. On a rational level, you know that no one has you in mind when they attack Leftists/Atheists.

    And yet it stings, because they are attacking a part of your self-identity. Rationality doesn't come into it, because you do not feel threatened on a rational level.

    Now flip the script. No one is attacking these Right-Wing Christians personally. They're just writing book after book where Right-Wing Christians are idiots, monsters, pedophiles. Where Leftism/Atheism is (almost) always good and noble. It's not a personal attack, it's an Identity attack, which is worse.

    Again, this has nothing to do with who Truly Started It. There is no Truly Started It, or even a Truly Doing It. There are only competing interests, preferences, and perspectives operating irrationally.