Oh Dear

There must be something in the water. Or something. Because the stupid is out in force right now – and yes this will be somewhat political because it all relates to the attempts from multiple directions (most of them either Jihadist or from one of the Holy Glittery Hoo Haas of the Social Justice Whiner crowd) to silence opinions they don’t like.

Now, I personally don’t care what opinion anyone holds. I’m not going to tell anyone they can’t voice said opinion here. We don’t close comments because we “don’t need the grief” (there’s a link to the piece that says this further down thread). And we’ve banned… oh, I don’t know, maybe half a dozen people since the Mad Genius Club got started, and at least half of them are aliases of everyone’s least favorite social disease aka Yama.

If you voice an opinion that seems off, you’re going to get challenged, and if it strikes someone as really dumb, it’s going to get laughed at. That’s a risk that comes with free speech.

Anyway, that said, on to the idiocy exhibits.

First up we have the East German who christened me and Sarah the Worst People in the World because we said it’s a bad idea to expel people from civilization because they hold the “wrong” views. One would think that someone old enough to have grown up in Communist East Germany would understand abuse of power and have some notion of what freedom is all about, but apparently not, to judge from her opwhining on this years Hugos. I do love how the things she likes being on the ballots and a pretty high chance of one of them winning is just fine, but the prospect of something that doesn’t appeal to her being on the ballots – and the overwhelming tilt that’s demonstrated by the difficulty of getting something on said ballot that isn’t a literary SJW wet dream, much less something like that winning – has her in palpitations.

I may be the World’s Worst Person again for saying this, of course. And for pointing out the sheer banal idiocy of her approving commentary on how the Hugos aren’t supposed to reflect commercial success and then referring to bestseller lists (which are often more of an indicator of what’s being pushed, although occasionally something manages to bypass the push and sneak on there) as a proxy for sales. Let’s put it the simple way: if the Hugo award winners and the books that sell lots of copies have nothing in common, then the Hugo is nothing more than a remarkably appropriate figurine for a masturbatory award.

Let’s go even further. This was not always the case. I remember borrowing books from the local library proudly proclaiming that they’d sold millions of copies, and won the Hugo and Nebula. The only time that’s going to happen now is if they give the award to someone like Rowling or Pratchett – in which case it’s more of an “oh shit, this is embarrassing, better give them a sympathy vote or something”.

Idiot exhibit number two is arguably worse. This um… lady (because calling her what I’d like to call her involves far too many four letter words of the sort I try not to use in public – and you folk know what my in public language is like) seems to think that “free speech” means “not offending people” and that – as a corollary – not being offended is a human right.

Um. Yeah. She says about people who are responding angrily to her: “They seem to make no distinction between free speech and hate speech, and they seem to believe that freedom of speech includes the freedom to say anything. ”

Lady, that’s exactly what freedom of speech means. It does not mean the right to have no consequences when you speak unwisely – but you still have the right to speak. She goes on to mention “the human rights to dignity, respect, honor, and non-discrimination” which has me wondering just what she’s on – other than bullshit, of course. She’s on a really strong vein of that.

Firstly – nobody has a right to respect. You’ve got to earn that. Ditto honor. And dignity, to a lesser extent. As to non-discrimination, when I’m applying for work, you bet your sweet ass I want discrimination applied. I want the people hiring to be discriminating about choosing the best candidate (and I want that candidate to be me).

Freedom of speech does not “have to be restricted when it comes into conflict with other humans rights” because there is not one single bloody human right that legitimately can come into conflict with the right of any person anywhere to spout whatever bullshit is on their mind at the time.

Let’s take this a little further. Say there’s hate speech laws. Now, say an ideologue like our favorite failed artist Adolf manages to wangle his way into power. Gee, he’s got the perfect bludgeon to silence anything he disagrees with using hate speech laws. And you want to enable that? Do enjoy Sharia, lady. Because it’s obvious you’re not going to be able to fight it.

I could go on – I should fisk this entire piece of stupid for posterity sometime – but I’m writing this on a work night, and my alarm goes off way too bloody early to deal with such industrial-strength idiocy.

You have been warned. The stupid is out. Be wary.

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81 responses to “Oh Dear

  1. Pat Patterson

    Kate, brilliant person, you placed your finger on one of the most idiotic fallacies being bandied about: the idea that there exists a long list of human rights, in the absence of any power of enforcing those rights. I’m not sure about the statement in the Declaration of Independence that “these truths (are) self-evident: that all men are created equal, and are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, and that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That MIGHT be right, but I’d hesitate to go to court with only this as my defense.
    Fortunately, as an American, I don’t HAVE to go to court with only the Declaration of Independence. I have the Constitution, and in particular, I have the Bill of Rights.
    Now, where it seems that a lot of people are swerving off the road is at this point: the entire Bill of Rights is NOT concerned with transactions between private citizens. It has NOTHING to say on that, if I’m reading it correctly. It is, in its’ entirety, spelling out the rights of the citizen which may not be infringed by the GOVERNMENT.
    One of the writers you cite says that “freedom of speech is the core of all democratic societies;” maybe she’s right, but I have no evidence of that. As a matter of fact, I don’t even know what that means. Does it mean that all democratic societies have a law that states “Congress shall make no law …abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press…”? Does it mean that freedom of speech and free press are actually practiced in all democratic societies? Oh, tell us their NAMES, please!
    But instead, she swerves off the road and says “…they seem to believe freedom of speech includes the freedom to say anything.” And, dear Kate, as you point out, THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT IT MEANS!!! It doesn’t mean you will face no consequences from your neighbors, but it had BETTER mean that you face no consequences from the government.
    And by the way: there ARE differences between speech/the press and behavior. In the United States, don’t know about the rest of the world, speech CAN reach the level of behavior, for example in the case of ‘fighting words,’ which is defined IN LAW as being verbal taunts so offensive as to effectively constitute a physical assault. The response, in such cases, must be proportional. Under US laws, there is no speech so offensive that the proportionate response is murder. That appears not to be the case under Islamic law.
    Lemme sum up: In the US, freedom of speech and of the press (as well as religion, peaceable assembly, and the right to petition the government for redress of grievances, is NOT based on some nebulous human-rights based creed. It’s based on black letter law, the First Amendment to the Constitution. Gimme dat, and keep yer touchy-feely, because I didn’t sign on for that. I swore an oath, which has no expiration date, to uphold and defend the Constitution. Ain’t swore nuthin to no dam’ human rights activists.
    Oh, yeah, all the other 9 Amendments in the Bill of Rights depend on the Second Amendment to keep them from being trampled.

    • The difference between the Declaration of Independence and these yahoos is relatively straightforward: The Declaration of Independence outlined an approach and thought process. These things are inherently broad and nebulous. The Declaration of Independence is not a law and is not intended to be. It is ‘these are the ends to which we strive and the reasons for what we do based on things that aren’t just inside ourselves.’

      These yahoos mangle things like that all around. They take philosophies and ideals and turn them, unmodified, into laws or Things That Should Be Law ™. Which Never Ends Well ™. As with most such sweeping statements and plans it leaves out the human factor, where the Declaration and Constitution reflect a great awareness of the Human Factor as well as the ideals that speak to what men should be, but aren’t and yet may still strive towards.

    • Kate Paulk

      I’m rather fond of the US laws on the matter. It makes perfect sense to me to allow any speech, and work with consequences instead.

      To take the old favorite “shout “fire” in a crowded theater” example, yes, everyone has the right to do this. If a small child does it and there is no fire, the child would – in more sensible days – get the spanking of its life and informed that it could have killed someone by making everyone else panic. If a mentally deficient person does it, something similar would likely happen only without the corporal punishment (assuming a sensible justice system, of course).

      Only the person who is mentally capable, adult, and *knowingly falsely* shouts “fire” in the crowded theater faces criminal consequences, and that is because they acted in a fashion they could reasonably assume would cause panic and potentially injury or death. Even then, the consequences aren’t for the speech, but for choosing to speak in a way calculated to cause physical harm.

      • Uncle Lar

        Kate,
        The “cry fire” argument is often cited by the anti gun folks in their efforts to enact “common sense” gun control. They do ignore completely the difference between laws based on consequences for actions vs laws of prior restraint. Apply their logic behind restrictive gun control to the theater case and every patron would have to don a locked ball gag for the duration of the performance. After passing an extensive background check of course. Can’t be too careful over who you let into a theater after all. It’s for the children don’t you know.

        • Kate Paulk

          Which is why “for the children” is a really useful warning sign – when someone uses it, there’s a damn good chance they’re proposing something that can’t stand on its own merits – and that the proposer is chasing power.

  2. Draven

    Of course she supports that, she believes the Right People will always be in charge of determining what can and can’t be said.

  3. Even more amusing about Der Kommissar in East Germany, is that she did not enable comments, because she “doesn’t need the grief”.

    Interesting POV, that discussion and reasoned argument about the merits and failures of her comments are considered “grief”.

    Or maybe she just doesn’t want us Morlocks sullying her Eloi commentary. . .

    • It’s unsurprising, really. She likes to yell and screech, but having to defend her position?

      FWIW, I actually do agree that taste is subjective. However, there are things we know most people tend to like, and that’s not what’s winning. For her to say that these works should is basically her telling the masses to sit down, shut up, and do as they’re told.

      She can bite me.

    • Kate Paulk

      Well, the Mad Genius Club does have the “worst people in the world” as members and she can’t *possibly* have that kind of scum running around on her nice clean blog, now, can she?

  4. If my current project wasn’t being released as a serial, and therefore already out in the wild in part, I’d have to change the “sedition” laws to anti-hate speech laws the president uses to kill free speech.

    No, I don’t care who you are. You. Do. Not. Get. To. Tell. Me. What. I. Can’t. Say.

    Period.

    Don’t like it? Well, suck it up, cupcake. We live in the real world were I can tell you to perform anatomically impossible sexual acts upon yourself with rusty farm implements and there isn’t a damn thing you can do about it. That’s what makes this country great.

    If you prefer the laws in these other countries, then why not relocate there? We sure as hell won’t miss ya.

  5. DanB

    Miss Cohen’s article offends me. By her own argument, she needs to apologize, withdraw the article, and spend some months in introspection, meditating upon her sins, before she writes another… yeah… that makes sense… o.O

    • Kate Paulk

      But how could this be? Surely all proper=thinking people on the correct side of history agree with her (oops. Sarcasm overload)

  6. DanB

    Her article offends me. By her own argument, she must withdraw the article, apologize for the offense, and spend some months of introspection on her sins before she attempts to publish again… yeah, that makes sense… O.o

  7. Pingback: Join Arms and March | Cedar Writes

  8. More and more I find myself reminded of the line from the Ape in “The Last Battle” by C. S. Lewis (paraphrased because it’s been a very long time):

    “You think freedom is doing what you want? You’re wrong. I’ll tell you what true freedom is. True freedom is doing what I tell you.”

    The SJWs keep looking at dystopias, or the bad guys in books, and taking them as policy advice.

    • Kate Paulk

      Oh, the conniptions the SJWs would have at the mere thought that they agreed with that most horrible of beings, a *male, white, Christian* author. (the worst thing is, they don’t think the ape’s view is a bad thing)

  9. Jim McCoy

    I already wrote a fairly lengthy reply to a similar post over at Sarah’s blog, so I’ll just say this here:

    They can have my free speech, when they pry it from my cold, dead hands.

    • Kate Paulk

      And said hands are not getting cold and dead unless I am either extremely old, or I’ve taken a number of the bastards with me.

  10. BobtheRegisterredFool

    I self censor here.

    This is a blog for writing and selling fiction. Hence, some of the people that come here are fairly to my left.

    Hence I might run someone off, or at least make useful things harder to find for them, if I treated this as a venue to fully explore my political fixations.

    Of course, if I was just hanging around being obnoxious, there might be a conversation with the proprietors, and I’d likely end up looking like a fool.

    I’ve other venues for other things. I could probably get away here with stuff I mostly have sense not to try. I harm my reputation less by trying to stay on topic.

    I think employers should absolutely have the right to discriminate against certain forms of recreational drug use in industrial workplaces were judgement is a safety issue. Perhaps on topic, but a few obsessions, and I thought about what ways of wording it were appropriate or inappropriate for here.

    • Kate Paulk

      I choose not to say a number of things here, because they are not appropriate for this venue.

      And yes, employers should have the right to discriminate – specifically in favor of characteristics that will make someone a good employee, but they’re allowed to be dumb and shoot their businesses in the foot, too.

  11. Christopher M. Chupik

    Speaking of the social media disease, ya’ll might want to read this:

    https://www.affsdiary.com/shadow/2015/01/15/a-quick-update/

  12. Uncle Lar

    It would seem that MGC and ATH are running in parallel today.
    I did click on the link to precious flower’s screed, couldn’t bear to read most of it so scrolled down to the comments. That in itself is worth the price of admission. Y’all should go take a look, but please first put down any liquids. Your keyboards will thank you.
    Must say I feel humble and honored to move in the same circles as the two Worst People in the World, though I really feel compelled to introduce Tanya baby to Larry Correia on general principles. ELoE rules after all.

    • Uncle Lar, all the Mad Genius Women are running together today. We didn’t even talk about it, honest! Some things are just too much to be borne in silence.

      • Christopher M. Chupik

        Proof of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy!

      • Uncle Lar

        I’m minded of two old sayings:
        Great minds think alike.
        A judgement of a person’s intelligence is often made by how much their opinions agree with your own.
        And Cedar, keep plugging away. You’ll make worst person status soon enough.

        • Why thank you! I’ve already been dubbed a traitor to my gender and a dried up old biddy by the person shrilling over the Hugos that Kate mentions above. I am but a bud, quivering into blossom…

          And yes, you are supposed to snicker at that.

          • You’re not supposed to say that yourself. You’re supposed to let Sanford say that. 😉

          • Kate Paulk

            Honestly, the dumbing down is a concern. I mean, in the old days you had to do something really *heinous* to be a candidate for worst person in the world, like, you know, send millions to ovens disguised as showers and turn what was left into really tacky kitsch artwork (that was one sickening exhibition…). Now, by the Gospel According to Frau Buhlert, all you need to do is verbalize some badthink and you’ve got it.

    • Kate Paulk

      We didn’t coordinate. It’s just that both of us wound up with steam emerging from our ears for more or less the same reasons.

    • Patrick Chester

      Wouldn’t that be overkill? (Remembers Maxim 37: “There is no ‘overkill.’ There is only ‘open fire’ and ‘I need to reload.'”)

  13. Kate, it’s really simple: Eligibility posts are Good, when they list works by “by women, POC, LGBTQ, small press, indie or otherwise marginalised writers.” They are Bad when they list works by Evil Conservatives. What’s to disagree with?

  14. Pat Patterson

    What IS the name of that Heinlein short story, where the character keeps trying to make the point that the break away (asteroidal?) colonies have no ‘rights’ to do anything, because nobody has ‘rights’? His buddies misunderstand him to believe he thinks they ought to remain under Earth control.

  15. robfornow

    “The Sad Puppies are wailing again, because their preferred brand of speculative fiction still isn’t very popular with Hugo voters.” Heh-Heh (sneaky grin/chuckle) Last year I watched from the sidelines. This year I intend to toss in me forty quid and buy me a vote. I think that there are going to be a lot of that going on and she had better hitch up her bloomers because it is going to be a fun ride this year.

    • Kate Paulk

      There’s two options: either take it over or bypass it. Either way, stock up on popcorn, because the butthurt wailing from the SJW crowd is going to be epic.

  16. Arwen

    Has this precious snowflake ever interacted with reality outside her own head? Good heavens, she would see us all ruled the way they are in North Korea.

  17. I still feel very passed over. Must be the lamb blood. I never got nominated to worst, and I’m worsererest than Cedar or Sarah (Kate? well now she was Aussie and I am now. Got a legacy to continue). Sniff. It’s sexist and anti-australian discrimination that what it is.

  18. Pat Patterson

    Just posted my review for ‘Baptism By Fire’ by David Paseo aka kiltedave .
    Pam, Comments are turned off on your thread ‘What’s Your Problem’ as of 5:17 AM Eastern.
    Ya know, that’s yer problem right there…

  19. I’ve tried to explain that to people about such laws, or any laws restricting freedoms at all.

    Do you trust this power in the hands of your worst political enemy? If yes, grant it away, if not, then don’t.