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Renegade ex-AVFMer posts 4600-word exposé of Paul Elam … on Paul Elam’s own site

The graphic Vinczer used for his post on AVFM
The graphic Vinczer used for his post on AVFM

The already plenty messy MRA divorce between A Voice for Men’s cult leader Paul Elam and his former “Activity Director” Attila Vinczer has just gotten a lot messier.

Taking advantage of his old editor’s account on AVFM, Vinczer today posted a 4600-word screed on Elam’s own site intended to expose the “innards of Paul Elam and AVFM.” In it, Vinczer declares that

I have observed this organization, AVFM, led by CEO Paul Elam, dong things that are in my opinion immoral, unethical and outright criminal. … They are harming people and harming men and boys they claim to be helping. The reckless behaviour of Paul Elam, the founder, and now CEO of AVFM LLB is akin to a cult leader, with followers who may be oblivious to what they are being drawn into. 

Elam quickly removed the post from his site, declaring all of Vinczer’s “various allegations” to be false, but the internet does not so easily forget; archived copies of the original post are still available here and here,

Vinczer’s document contains a lot more invective than it does evidence, but he promises evidence will be forthcoming. “This is just the tip of the iceberg,” Vinczer declares, “there will be full disclosure to follow.” He says he will offer “hard evidence about the improprieties found within the innards of AVFM” to any journalist who asks.

I’m going to leave that to journalists who have a bevy of lawyers at their disposal, but what Vinczer has posted so far is … intriguing.

Let’s get the invective out of the way first.

To say that Vinczer is angry at his former boss is a bit of an understatement. Over the course of the long screed, Vinczer describes Elam, variously, as

  • an “unabashed maniac”
  • “unhinged and wreckless [sic]”
  • “an alcoholic trigger happy imbecile”
  • “a bully”
  • “a cowering coward”
  • “A yellow belly poison lipped scoundrel”
  • “an utter disappointment”
  • “a disgraced perjured individual willing to do anything in a rage of bitterness fuelled by pure anger for revenge”
  • “a black hole that drains the life out of people who are anywhere near you”

I have no personal knowledge of Elam’s drinking habits or his mental health, but the rest of that sounds about right to me.

Vinczer’s accusations against Elam are numerous, if a little light on detail. His basic charge is that Elam is

[a] thief, [a] cheat, [a] con artist, who engages in smoke and mirrors refusing to be transparent with handling the massive amount of money donated to AVFM. … [a] seemingly ill minded deviant who it appears may be guilty of embezzling corporate/donated funds … .

Specifically, he claims that Elam may have used AVFM money to “secretly vacation …  in Italy with his partner while having others believe he was impecunious.”

He also accuses Elam et al of wasting money they could have been using for activism to subsidize a men’s “retreat” during which, among other things, a drunken Elam led his comrades in a lively, er, discussion of the allegedly smelly vagina of an influential feminist journalist — then put a video of these drunken shenanigans up on Youtube.

AVFM, Vinczer declares,

is incapable of putting on a yearly conference, [despite] the vast amount of money it has received in donations. Instead they pay for flying David Miller aka David King in from the UK so a group of men can get drunk and do stupid things at a retreat putting the MRM into disrepute.

Vinczer demands that Elam fess up about where the money raised by AVFM goes:

I challenge the CEO of AVFM to give full disclosure of … how he spent 10s of thousands of dollars if, not 100s of thousands of dollars donated to AVFM for advocacy work. Without being transparent, we can only guess what the amounts are that you have spent. I know he took a salary from those donations, which is perfectly warranted. Question is how much money did he use for himself and how much was actually used for advocacy work, if any.

Vinczer also posts what he says is a transcript of a Skype conversation amongst AVFM’s top brass in which Elam gleefully announces his plans to put up videos from Vinczer’s financially disastrous Toronto DV conference this past summer without Vinczer’s permission, and with all evidence of Vinczer’s presence left on the cutting room floor.

In the alleged transcript, Elam allegedly says

I am uploading Tanveer Ahmens talk right now, with AVFM branding and Attila cut out of the video. … I am billing this as an AVFM production … and cutting any mention of Toronto DV Symposium.

Given that the alleged transcript is utterly free of the weird malapropisms that clutter up Vinczer’s own prose, I’m thinking there’s a pretty good chance it’s real. It’s worth reading, if only for the mustache-twirling villainy on display. [EDIT: Vinczer has now Tweeted a bunch of screenshots of the alleged conversation, which make me even more convinced that the transcript is real..]

Even if we assume that the transcript is real, the evidence presented so far doesn’t quite live up to Vinczer’s invective. Does he really have more evidence to provide?

Elam, for his part, says no, writing that

Vinczer has nothing to give the media other than his words, which are about as good as his promise to pay people he has conned. The man who is quick to tell everyone of his sleuth-like constant recording and record keeping of everything in his life will produce nothing of the sort.

On Twitter, Elam added an accusation of his own:

https://twitter.com/AVoiceForMen/status/652540990608158720

https://twitter.com/AVoiceForMen/status/652543874615787520

I guess we’ll just have to see where this all goes, huh?

EDIT: Added Elam’s tweets, changed the last line.

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Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

I’ll just tell them I heard the baby robbed a liquor store or something.

Jo
Jo
4 years ago

Interesting proposal, albeit a little modest.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

@ jo

I quite like Alan Partridge’s take on the Irish potato famine.

“That’s the price you pay for being a fussy eater”

And as he rightly pointed out about the Irish diaspora

“If you can afford to emigrate, you can afford to eat at a moderatly priced restaurant”

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
4 years ago

Thanks Jackie. Did you make that just now? It’s awesome.

Yeah, I did it up real quick and stuff for the peeps.

Bina
Bina
4 years ago

One of my friends has been vegan since she was 10 yet ate the placenta after she gave birth. I thought that was a pretty hardcore reintroduction to a carnivorous diet.

(She’s still vegan though so wasn’t tempted)

I don’t suppose I would be, either. But then again — I’m an omnivore, although there are some things I wouldn’t even contemplate putting in my mouth, and that’s one of them. Kopi Luwak is another.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

@ bina

Yeah, that’s another mystery like ambergris.

I can only assume it was a drunken dare and somebody went “Hey, you know that wasn’t so bad”

Maya
Maya
4 years ago

Man I love this stuff, it’s the most entertaining middle-school drama outside of the Real Housewives.

Seriously, can’t these MRAs disagree without trying to destroy each other? Every time you see former co-bloggers disagree, there’s always a huge explosion of drama, publishing skype logs (who the fuck even does that lol) and general shit-slinging.

“You’re a sociopath who stole money!”
“Yeah…well you beat your kids!”

I’m just imagining the MRA movement as a huge circle of genuinely terrible people who just cover for each other’s bad behavior until they get in a tiff, then off to the internet to make drama.

rugbyyogi
4 years ago

I’m not a doctor, but I always sort of saw the placenta as a SHARED organ. I mean there wouldn’t be one without mom + baby. Anyway, I didn’t indulge when I had the chance and since I ended up with an emergency c-sxn I’m not sure I really did have the chance. But suffice to say, it’s not an opportunity I regret missing.

Also, I think it’s entirely possible to be anti-circumcision without being anti-Semitic. Since Jewish people are a small percentage of the US population and thus mohel led circumcisions are a tiny portion of all circumcisions in the US, going after those circumcisions in particular seems pretty darn ineffective and does smack of anti-Semitism. Far better to go after routine hospital based circumcisions.

ignorantianescia
ignorantianescia
4 years ago

Also, I think it’s entirely possible to be anti-circumcision without being anti-Semitic. Since Jewish people are a small percentage of the US population and thus mohel led circumcisions are a tiny portion of all circumcisions in the US, going after those circumcisions in particular seems pretty darn ineffective and does smack of anti-Semitism. Far better to go after routine hospital based circumcisions.

I suppose “routine” is the same as “non-medical”? Sure, they could, but in view of the typical reasonableness of a MRA they would probably still try to influence medical decisions.

Also, I think similar considerations apply to Muslims: MRAs would probably end up in bigotry, considering their pre-existing inclinations.

Of course most American routine circumcisions are Christian and a lot of them derives from bad medicine, though there too you have groups who do so for religious reasons.

sbel
sbel
4 years ago

He probably is anti-Semitic, but him being anti-circumcision doesn’t prove it imo. The vast majority of circumcised men in the US are christians, and most Americans don’t see a connection between circumcision and jews.

Personally, I’m against circumcising babies when there’s no medical reason for it. I view it as people essentially performing cosmetic surgery on perfectly normal and healthy babies.

But it is typical of the mrm to do something so useless and vaguely threatening. Their list won’t shame the people on it since it’s socially acceptable to perform circumcisions and the people on the list probably publicly advertise that they do it. So what’s the point? Are they going send death threats to everyone on it? And then they just had to throw in a line to blame the evil females…

Arctic Ape
Arctic Ape
4 years ago

BTW, who pays for circumcision in US? insurance companies? Is there any formal distinction between medical and “regular” circumcision? I suppose religious circumcision is not covered by insurance?

ignorantianescia
ignorantianescia
4 years ago

@sbel
Yeah, I personally oppose it for young children as well in such cases as it infringes on a boy’s bodily integrity, but it’s extremely minor and is more or less reversible. So I also oppose any bans.

@Arctic Ape
Some states allow Medicaid coverage, others (esp. in the west) have restricted that only for medical circumcision. I bet there’s private insurance for it, too.

ignorantianescia
ignorantianescia
4 years ago

@sbel
I think it’s fair to call the use of the face cream canard anti-Semitic if it derives from an anti-Semitic cliché and is still applied against Jews (note Elam also singles out mohels).

History Nerd
4 years ago

I thought AVfM was always less about MRA activism and more about being an extension of Paul Elam’s bank account. It seems like the MRA’s in Canada have been marginally better at getting stuff done (but only marginally).

Snowberry
Snowberry
4 years ago

Eating raw placenta is how mammals keep themselves from dying after giving birth.

Humans would gain the same benefits, but have the unique attitude of “don’ wanna, that’s gross” and then keeling over dead a quarter of the time. Which is why midwives were invented. :-p

sbel
sbel
4 years ago

@ignorantianescia
Yeah, you’re right. There is a lot of overlap between the mrm and neo-nazis.

kfreed
kfreed
4 years ago

Ah, so the fallout is over money, not the fact that AVFM is composed of a gaggle of white supremacist hosers. Libertarian tools… always ripe for the art of the grift. They never see it coming no matter how often it happens to them:) Bitcoins, anyone?

jaygee
jaygee
4 years ago

You know I actually think that is a nice picture of Paul Elam. He’s smiling and looks like an average dude enjoying a drink. Yes, I know he’s a terrible human being, but I’m trying to look at it through the eyes of a stranger. I find the fact that Vinczer used this picture to pair with his expose interesting, especially considering the availability of creepy bug-eyed pictures of Elam.

I’m glad they are cannibalizing each other. I hope it utterly destroys their organization and helps their supporters see who they really are. I know that’s a lot, but why not root for it to happen? I’m looking forward to seeing the drama unveil.