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A Voice for Men Gets Stung, or TheWoolyBumblebee’s Revenge

bees
Not the bees!

The WoolyBumbleBattle continues.

A couple of weeks back, you may recall, the excitable antifeminist videoblogger who goes by the name of TheWoolyBumblebee got herself kicked out of the A Voice for Men clubhouse after annoying Paul Elam with her incessant (but actually pretty much justified) attacks on libertarians and Men Going Their Own Way.

Naturally, there has been much drama since then.

Elam, doing his best to affect a certain world-weariness about it all, put forth a video offering his take on the subject with the understated title “On Ideologues, Isms and Evangelical Atheists.”

TheWoolyBumblebee — real name Kristina Hansen — has made no attempts to hide her feelings. She’s started a new blog called Menticulture that seems to be devoted entirely to bashing A Voice for Men. And with her husband, she’s produced not one but seven videos lambasting AVFM, ranging in length from 38 seconds to an hour and twenty minutes. The long video, by the way, is a point-by-point response to Elam’s video; a number of the more recent videos are attacks on regular AVFM contributor Karen Straughan, aka Girl Writes What. Hansen’s husband has also done a couple of videos by himself as well.

I’ve actually listened to them all, for better or worse. They’re angry and rambling, and for the most part not worth the effort —  unless you just really love schadenfreude. While some of their criticisms of AVFM are on the mark, the two go off on weird pedantic tangents and seem rather too obsessed with Girl Writes What’s lack of academic credentials. (She was evidently a two-time college dropout.) Hansen’s husband also likes calling people faggots. Lovely.

I had at least hoped for some good inside dirt on AVFM’s main characters, but the Hansens have got very little to tell that isn’t obvious from the outside: John “The Other” Hembling is a liar? Tell me something I don’t know. Elam is a tin-pot tyrant who likes to get his way? Gosh, who could have possibly guessed that?

But I suppose it’s to be expected: these two agree with the irrational antifeminism that’s at the heart of AVFM, so it’s hardly surprising that their critiques don’t go far enough, and that they get bogged down in lots of irrelevant issues.

Still, in a recent post on her blog, Hansen makes her arguments against AVFM a bit more cogently than she does in any of the videos.

After assuring readers that her attacks on A Voice for Men aren’t driven by “vengeance, hurt feelings, or a desire to one-up anyone” — not sure I’m buying all this — she charges the principals at AVFM of letting their ideological predilections get in the way of providing real practical help to men.

I suggested several things we could have done to help men, such as applying for funding for men’s services through VAWA and other Gov’t agencies, and was told that they would never touch government money because … it is against their libertarian principles, and because that is ‘what feminists do’….

I admit feminists have done a lot of harm to men and boys, but they have also done a lot of good for women and it is THAT part which we need to look at and study in order to be able to adequately assist men in any real way. It is called working the system. If you want change, that is where you go to do it, and not by sitting on the sidelines waiting for the government to collapse.

But AVFM, she notes, seems much less interested in making things better for men than in keeping men in a permanent state of rage:

[Elam] keeps men in a state of anger, and hopelessness. He perpetuates the victim narrative and tries to keep you stuck in victim mode. And he is not the only one. The inflammatory rhetoric used by those at AVFM, like John, are carefully written to get you emotionally worked up. I know this to be the case because I was on several SKYPE calls with John when he wrote many of his articles. I know how he does it and why. It’s to keep you in a state of anger and despair. …

Anyone working in the helping professions worth their salt will tell you that the goal of their work is to help their clients free themselves of the need for their help. …  But what Paul, John, Karen, and others at AVFM do, is keep you in a state of constant anger, helplessness, and need. They do not want you to get better. And why would they? … The more you rely on them the more they profit.

I don’t agree with TheWoolyBumbleebee about much, but this is spot on.

She also has some very pointed things to say about AVFM’s attempts to blame the suicide of Earl Silverman, a Canadian activist for male victims of domestic violence, on feminism.

There are men out there at this very moment that are truly hurting and suffering. Let’s start showing them we really care by doing things that make a real difference in their lives. Enough of the useless sitting on the sidelines bitching about how evil women are, how the government needs to collapse, or how the only way to solve things is to opt out. This is why Earl Silverman died. John wants to blame feminism, but the fact is that the men that were close to Earl at the end knew that his despair was borne of the failure of the MRM to actually DO anything.

Again, she has a point. By its own accounts, A Voice for Men raises literally tens of thousands of dollars a year — a considerable portion of which, I imagine, must end up in the pockets of Elam, who seems to have no other visible means of financial support, and/or in the pockets of Hembling, who has recently been promoted to a paid staff position. After Silverman’s death, AVFM raised money to help start an Earl Silverman center — a project now ironically in the hands of Hansen herself. Why couldn’t AVFM have used some of its fundraising ability to help Silverman fund his domestic violence shelter back when he was alive?

In my next post I’ll look at Girl Writes What’s response to all this.

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CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

David Futrelle

I have a bad feeling that A voice for men is going to make her enemy number one for awhile. Have the accused TheWoolyBumblebee of becoming a “feminazi” yet? If only it hadn’t taken her so long to apparently realize AVFM doesn’t really care that much about men.

Speaking of Girl Writes what, she was featured in that video I tweeted to you awhile back. Hannibal did a great job debunking her.

Buntzums
Buntzums
7 years ago

There was also a reference to John’s self medication project but that too will not come as a surprise to anyone as he is a known psychotic and sociopath who does various drugs. Wooly had lots to say. Some of it valid. Some of it weird. I still feel she is likely not a good egg.

Christo
Christo
7 years ago

I recall Paul Elam did try to get non-profit status with the government.

From a 2011 update on his blog:
“In more business, A Voice for Men is on its way to becoming a 501 (c) 3, non-profit organization dedicated to fighting misandry and anti-male discrimination. More on that in the future.” http://www.avoiceformen.com/updates/site-updates/avfm-news-and-updates/

I could have missed further updates, but I never saw it mentioned again, and don’t see anywhere on his blog where he says they are non-profit, so I assume his blog was just too nasty to be approved. At any rate, even if he did achieve non-profit status, I don’t know of any government grants he would qualify for considering he doesn’t actually provide any direct services to men and boys and the overriding goal of his blog is to teach men and boys contempt for women. His excuses for why he doesn’t apply for grants doesn’t wash with me. I’m sure he would pocket ANY money that is available to him, but he doesn’t apply for government funds because it’s not actually an option for him and his nasty “organization”.

Paul Elam is making a killing on men’s suffering, a lot of which he is creating himself, along with his partner, John Hembling (John the Other), who also has a lot of motivation ($) to perpetuate the hysteria that keeps the funds rolling in. The irony is that this is exactly what they accuse domestic violence programs of doing – perpetuating violence to get rich. The difference is that shelters actually provide direct services to crime victims and help them OUT of their suffering and their employees generally work for poverty level wages, on average. Most crime victim’s advocates are not even feminists. But they don’t want you to know that.

Bottom line – convincing men and boys that women are evil, selfish, gold-digging bitches (hypergamy) who use men for their own gain, hate all men, and want to see them dead is keeping them rolling in the dough.

CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

@Buntzums

I don’t blame you. She still hasn’t denounced the misnamed “men’s rights movement.” From all appearances she’s just at war with other MRA bloggers now.

Christo
Christo
7 years ago

CriticalDragon1177…will you share that link of Hannibal debunking GWW here? I’d like to see it.

Buntzums
Buntzums
7 years ago

@CriticalDragon1177 No they will never feature an article about her criticisms. They know that giving her attention is bad for AVFM. They will attempt to ignore and silence WBB. I also just watched http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_ytQuD8DXI and it appears Danny painted graffiti for AVFM to advertise them in Hamilton a year ago and now is complaining that the feminists are covering his work up. It appears to be on a public median lol. He says it’s chalk but given that the city painted over it, I wonder about the validity of that statement.

Aruba
7 years ago

@Christo

I just saw a video from HannibaltheVictor13 called Ultimate Guide to the MRA

I’m not sure if that’s the one that CriticalDragon1177 is referring to, but it is interesting.

theladyzombie
7 years ago

I know HannibaltheVictor (aka HannibalBarca) personally and have talked to him on Skype on several occasions. He’s a good egg. He’s done lots of videos criticizing MRAs.

arubakeru
arubakeru
7 years ago

@theladyzombie

I’m subscribed to his channel on youtube, his videos are great.

Perry
Perry
7 years ago

So, the MRA movement isn’t about helping men and boys but really is about throwing tantrums on line?

arubakeru
arubakeru
7 years ago

Perry: “So, the MRA movement isn’t about helping men and boys but really is about throwing tantrums on line?”

pretty much.

Aruba
7 years ago

I don’t know why but my comments are getting caught up in moderation… I accidentally signed as arubakeru instead of Aruba, but the

Aruba
7 years ago

Shit, I pressed enter too soon…

Aruba
7 years ago

lol

hellkell
hellkell
7 years ago

There was also a reference to John’s self medication project but that too will not come as a surprise to anyone as he is a known psychotic and sociopath who does various drugs. Wooly had lots to say. Some of it valid. Some of it weird. I still feel she is likely not a good egg.

Buntzums: would you just PLEASE fucking stop with the internet diagnoses and ableism? I don’t know that Hembling’s psychotic, but I do know that you need to knock it off.

hellkell
hellkell
7 years ago

Back on topic, WBB is 100% right about decent people in helping professions. When I think of Elam having been a counselor, I get chills.

chibell1
chibell1
7 years ago

Over/under 5 days before thewoolybumblbee on the register-her list?

Not sure what category she would be under though, most probably a new made up one by Elam.

boumbette
boumbette
7 years ago

*gets the popcorn*

Howard Bannister
7 years ago

Perry
So, the MRA movement isn’t about helping men and boys but really is about throwing tantrums on line?

…yeah, that sounds about right.

CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

@Aruba

That’s the video I was talking about. Thanks for posting it here. I was about to when I noticed that Christo had asked to see it.

cloudiah
7 years ago

Yeah, can’t exactly root for either side here, but this was eerily accurate:

They do not want you to get better. And why would they? … The more you rely on them the more they profit.

CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

I should have linked to HannibaltheVictor13’s “Ultimate Guide to the MRA part 1” in my first comment, since that was the video I was talking about, and its an excellent video. I recommend everyone here watches it. It does an excellent job debunking Girl Writes What and her MRA talking points. I don’t know when part 2 is coming out unfortunately, but give him time. Hannibal is an excellent youtuber especially when it comes to debunking both racists and sexist MRAs. Here’s a link to his youtube channel.

http://www.youtube.com/user/HannibaltheVictor13

freemage
freemage
7 years ago

“WoolyBumbleBattle”. It’s like Dr. Seuss from Hell.

CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

@freemage

You wrote,
—————————————————————————————————————–
“WoolyBumbleBattle”. It’s like Dr. Seuss from Hell.
—————————————————————————————————————–

What do you mean?

theladyzombie
7 years ago

@CriticalDragon

I hope Hannibal’s latest channel doesn’t get flagged down. The race realists have already taken out a couple of his channels. Also, since there’s a lot of overlap between racists and MRAs, I’m fairly sure they’ve had a hand in flagging him down.

I was talking to him while he was preparing to make the part one video. GWW has consistently pissed him off due to her anarcho-capitalist/libertarian ideals, her misrepresentation of classical history, and her evo-psych wankery concerning anthropology (he is an anthropology/classics double major).

Anyway, he’ll be pleased that his video was linked here.

Falconer
7 years ago

Over/under 5 days before thewoolybumblbee on the register-her list?

Ninja’d!

Curse my metal body! I wasn’t fast enough!

leftwingfox
7 years ago

—————————————————————————————————————–
“WoolyBumbleBattle”. It’s like Dr. Seuss from Hell.
—————————————————————————————————————–

What do you mean?
Tweedle beetle battle

CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

@theladyzombie

You wrote

——————————————————————————————————————–
@CriticalDragon

I hope Hannibal’s latest channel doesn’t get flagged down. The race realists have already taken out a couple of his channels. Also, since there’s a lot of overlap between racists and MRAs, I’m fairly sure they’ve had a hand in flagging him down.

I was talking to him while he was preparing to make the part one video. GWW has consistently pissed him off due to her anarcho-capitalist/libertarian ideals, her misrepresentation of classical history, and her evo-psych wankery concerning anthropology (he is an anthropology/classics double major).

Anyway, he’ll be pleased that his video was linked here.
——————————————————————————————————————–

Yes, I know about what the so called “racial realists” did to his last few channels. Its really upsetting to me since he had a lot of videos that I thought were excellent videos. He knew Hannibal was an anthropology / classics major. He said he was studying to be an anthropologist in multiple videos and he mentioned his interest in the classics in a prior one.

And you’re right, he will be pleased to know that his video was linked to here. Its a great video and it deserves to be linked to when appropriate.

I’m really hoping David Futrelle will be able to use it or one of his other videos on MRAs as a source. He would really like that and David could definitely make use of them.

Buntzums
Buntzums
7 years ago

@hellkell then tell david to delete it. This isn’t my blog. You’d know what I know, better than I would, obviously. Being that you are from? I don’t dislike you. I don’t know why you are rude to me, or why you think this is incorrect for that matter, given that it was repeated by WBB and others who live with JTO in Vancouver BC but thank you. From here on in I will submit all my comments for your personal approval and then write to the authority for appropriate comments following that I will make a federal case out of everything said so that we can all sit in a circle and hold hands. Just joking. Not about John though.

cloudiah
7 years ago

Buntzums, please don’t double down on this. JtO’s use or non-use of medication and/or psychiatric state are NOT known, and NOT relevant here.

theladyzombie
7 years ago

@CriticalDragon

At one point, both Hannibal and David pissed Elam off enough that he mentioned the two of them at the same time in one of his posts. Of course, Elam snidely insinuated that they were in a homosexual relationship, and of course with Elam being Elam, he had to throw in some fat comments too in addition to the homophobia. I think David mentioned it , but I’m hopeless when it comes to using the search function here.

I have Hannibal’s Skype contact information if David wants it. Or he could contact him on his Youtube channel. I know Hannibal wouldn’t mind chatting with David.

Buntzums
Buntzums
7 years ago

@ david please remove all my comments here. I wouldn’t want either Cloudiah or the other one faint, falling on one of her cats, crushing it to death. Apparently we must protect JTO for criticism about his use of medications, legal or otherwise. I submit that I am in the wrong here as is evident by schience. I’m not kidding take down my comments to spare the ladies eyes.

Aaliyah
7 years ago

Seriously, Buntzums? It’s like you didn’t even read about why we find your post objectionable.

Cthulhu's Intern
7 years ago

@Buntzums

cloudiah
7 years ago

Just waiting for buntzums to call us “hysterical” to make this just about a perfect meltdown.

XD

Cthulhu's Intern
7 years ago

I’m just waiting for him/her to show up in a few months/weeks/days trying to act like s/he’s our best friend, acting like we should forget everything he/she said.

Bostonian
Bostonian
7 years ago

Dude, John the Other would be an insufferable dipshit if he were completely neurotypical.

Buntzums
Buntzums
7 years ago

I read you fine that’s why I’ve decided to back down. Yet you per-sew. Not only that but you cuss me out to boot. I understand you are defending two concepts: 1 mental illness shouldn’t be stigmatized 2 buntzums shouldn’t talk about things relating to John when we are discussing wbb because she is not to be trusted and talking about this makes you look bad because what I say reflects on you and you feel you can’t prove this to a large internet audience that already hates feminists. That’s why david should delete my comments post haste as they are not helping and in fact hurting the message which commentators want to advance. So please on with the deleting and such.

BabyLawyer
BabyLawyer
7 years ago

Freemage

“WoolyBumbleBattle”. It’s like Dr. Seuss from Hell.

After the saga has ended, David should create an allegorical children’s book about MRAs called the Bumble Battle Book.

ikonografer
7 years ago

I think you’re mistaken David. the fact is, I think I self ID’d as an MRA one time, and that, as it turns out was a mistake. I admit to the sin of thinking that some in the MRA would be rational thinkers, thus matching the claims made to me at the time. Still, the fact is, some are, and many are just as disgusted with Paul Elam’s self victimhood as they are with the victimhood of someone like Rebecca Watson, who at the end of the day, is akin to Elam.

If you’ll take a close look though, you’ll see I’ve never written an article in support of avfm, and indeed, am not anti-feminist. I’m anti-kook. that is to say, I oppose someone like the femitheist, who advocates killing all men except for breeding stock. I also have been (and will continue to be) against libertarianism, objectivism, and mgtow literally forever, or as far back as my recollection and knowledge of these things go. You’lll forgive my candor here, but i WILL get a little excercised when people talk shit about my wife, mischaracterize me (as you have, David), lie to my face, or proposition my wife *while I’m actually standing there*, so my videos are a bit hyperbolic? So what? It’s youtube. Get a grip. I’m well aware of the difference between a youtube video and say, producing something for a news network.

Perhaps you should have asked me what my position vis-a-vis feminists and such was, before assuming that I was tied to avfm outside of being married to someone who was. The fact is, I will fight ideological gender feminism. you know, the flipside of mgtow, but equity feminism is fine. I will fight libertarian ideologues, Ayn Randian objectivist ideologues, and anyone else who uses a religion to screw things up for everyone else. And yes, I would, and will, make common cause with anyone, feminist or not, who chooses to stand up to someone who says crazy shit. I, unlike a few of the ppl at avfm, am well aware that the supposed insult ‘NAWALT’, is actually true. Whenever you say ‘all’, you’ve probably fucked up, and that’s the case here, as it is with feminists and feminism–not all feminists are andrea dworkin, who wouldn’t have minded a high heel stomping my face, I’ve met quite a few very nice people who are feminists, and who aver being just as concerned about whatever inequalities are present in many western court systems that disproportionately disadvantage men.

As for my language, I grew up saying all those words-the ones you call racial slurs, and actually not giving a crap, or even knowing that the racial overtones would make someone cringe just b/c they were racial overtones, since to my mind, no one was, or is, above reproach–especially not for merely being born into some ethnic category or other. You don’t like my language, tough. I will not have my language policed, or my tone trolled. I make no apologies for either. At all. Ever. That is what happens when you do believe that it’s the message, and not the messenger that counts. Perhaps you might well appreciate the need to shout over some of the vilest shit I’ve ever heard come from what to all appearances are human beings, but nevertheless would strain the credulity of the most strict taxonomist.

I can, David, and often do, exercise restraint in my choice of words, but I won’t have it imposed from without, and I will do so as I see fit, not as someone from a background such as Watson’s (or perhaps yourself) would require of me. especially not when the requirement is in place to salve the emotional hurt of people who as a general rule, don’t actually give enough of a fuck about the physical hurts of those same people to do anything about them.

Cthulhu's Intern
7 years ago

…Buntzums. We don’t care if you talk about John the Otter in this feed. Hell, damn near every comment feed gets derailed with discussions about kittens here. And what are you talking about with the “Internet audience that hates feminists?” This site is not designed for MRAs. David’s not trying to convert anyone.

Finally, we’re not objecting to what you said we are. We’d probably be fine if you’d just listen to us and stop saying such problematic things, but no, you act like we’re in the wrong. And you continue being condescending.

Here’s a video of a baby penguin being tickled.

Detached
Detached
7 years ago

Oh hey, you guys are talking about HannibaltheVictor!! Cool guy, he’s how I got here.

CriticalDragon1177 (@CriticalDragon1)

@theladyzombie

Thanks. By the way, I meant to say “I knew Hannibal was an anthropology / classics major” in my last comment, rather than “He knew Hannibal was an anthropology / classics major” however, I didn’t notice the mistake until just now. Sorry about that.

Marie
Marie
7 years ago

@buntzums

@hellkell then tell david to delete it. This isn’t my blog. You’d know what I know, better than I would, obviously. Being that you are from? I don’t dislike you. I don’t know why you are rude to me,…

Calling someone out on ableism is not the same as disliking them. Hellkell is not being rude to you.

@ david please remove all my comments here. I wouldn’t want either Cloudiah or the other one faint, falling on one of her cats, crushing it to death. […]. I’m not kidding take down my comments to spare the ladies eyes.

And…failing to get the point. :/

Nice to see you threw in some misogyny with your general all around tantrum and ableism.

auggziliary
auggziliary
7 years ago

Buntzums, we are just asking you to stop with the ableistic comments, that’s all. We don’t know if MRAs have mental issues. But even if they all did that’s not the reason we are mocking them. We wouldn’t make fun of them for having issues, we would still make fun of them for being misogynistic asses.

j
j
7 years ago

John the other a sociopath? Uh, links?

leftwingfox
7 years ago

On the subject of criticism, did anyone see the Patton Oswalt post where he walks back his positions on rape jokes, and seems to understand the actual arguments made by feminists since?

katz
7 years ago

@ david please remove all my comments here. I wouldn’t want either Cloudiah or the other one faint, falling on one of her cats, crushing it to death. Apparently we must protect JTO for criticism about his use of medications, legal or otherwise. I submit that I am in the wrong here as is evident by schience. I’m not kidding take down my comments to spare the ladies eyes.

Christ, what an asshole.

ostara321
ostara321
7 years ago

I read you fine that’s why I’ve decided to back down. Yet you per-sew. Not only that but you cuss me out to boot. I understand you are defending two concepts: 1 mental illness shouldn’t be stigmatized 2 buntzums shouldn’t talk about things relating to John when we are discussing wbb because she is not to be trusted and talking about this makes you look bad because what I say reflects on you and you feel you can’t prove this to a large internet audience that already hates feminists. That’s why david should delete my comments post haste as they are not helping and in fact hurting the message which commentators want to advance. So please on with the deleting and such.

Errr…..???? We don’t care if you make fun of John. He’s quite mockable. But yeah, we have a problem with stigmatizing mental illness because it’s already stigmatized enough in most cultures and because calling someone who has abhorrent views and behaves poorly “crazy” is a lazy way to write off their actual problematic behaviors.

BTW, that post? Is not something a person who’s “decided to back down” would write. That’s something a person who’s decided to get passive aggressive and lash out rather than take a step back and examine what people are saying would write.

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