By David Futrelle
The results are in for the European elections, and as a confused American I have no idea what they mean, for the UK or Europe as a whole. (I’ll leave the explanations to people who understand this better than me.)
Embattled presidential candidate/sexual predator Donald Trump told the Wall Street Journal this morning that there is “zero chance” that he’ll be dropping out of the race, because “the support I’m getting is unbelievable.”
Some of the most unbelievable support is coming from a longtime fan of his known on the Internet as Heartiste — an extravagantly hateful pickup artist very familiar to readers of this blog.
So a couple of coffeeshop owners from Asheville, North Carolina just got outed as the two creepy, rapey, misogynistic assholes behind a skeezy pickup podcast, and, it turns out that a lot of their customers aren’t terribly happy about that.
The two have posted apologies (of sorts) and tried to buy forgiveness by donating to a local rape crisis center — which has refused to accept their money.
Given what the two have said — and allegedly done — that reaction is more than understandable. Read on for the details.
So the musician who goes by the name Pogo, best known for his magical audiovisual mashups using snippets of old Disney movies, is now declaring that the awful misogynistic nonsense he recently posted on his blog and on YouTube was “somewhat of an experiment for myself,” intended to rile up
the enormous breed of hyenas out there taking gender equality and feminism hostage, and bending it into a social status to validate their feeling that the world owes them everything because of their gender.
As Pogo (real name Nick Bertke) explains it in a new blog post today, his attacks on women were intended to expose these fake feminist “hyenas … as the self contradicting brats they are.” To do this, he says,
GamerGate provides a rare example of rats climbing aboard a sinking ship.
As the “movement” stews in its own conspiratorial rage, a small army of reactionary misogynists, sensing opportunity, have joined the cause. Sure, right-wingers like Adam Baldwin and Milo Yiannopoulos have long been Gaters, but it’s only in recent days that they’ve been joined by some of the better-known manospherians, from angry lawyer and juice seller Mike Cernovich to the charming Roosh V.
The latest manosphere douchebag to take up the GamerGate cause is the lovely and talented Matt Forney, who has promptly claimed for himself the mantle of GamerGate leader and hero.
The Sam Pepper situation just gets uglier and uglier. As YouTube sex educator Laci Green explains in the video above, Pepper, under fire for “prank” videos on YouTube that appear to show him sexually harassing numerous young women, is now facing serious accusations of sexual misconduct from numerous women – including, in one case, violent rape.
For those who haven’t been following the story as it’s developed over the past week: Sam Pepper is a former Big Brother UK cast member and YouTube personality best known for a series of unfunny “prank” videos which have often featured him sexually harassing women in various creepy ways.
So what do you do when a fondly held fantasy crumbles? That’s a question that both Davis Aurini and Jordan Owen have had to ask themselves this past week, when something they both desperately hoped was true – that Anita Sarkeesian had lied about contacting the police about death threats she’d gotten on Twitter – was shown convincingly to be false.
A Voice for Men’s “social media director” Janet Bloomfield is proving to be quite the innovator in the world of public relations. You may recall her cheeky approach to publicizing the recent AVFM conference, which involved awarding herself “whore points” for calling critics of AVFM “whores.”
Now she’s moved on to straight-up libel, making up fake quotes in order to make feminist writer Jessica Valenti look bad, and then bragging about it on her blog.
This whole sordid episode began several days ago when Valenti, on vacation, decided to send a message to “all the misogynist whiners in my feed today” in the form of a photo of her on a beach wearing a t-shirt saying “I bathe in male tears.”
The AVFM social media attack squad seized on this at once, with Bloomfield telling her followers, wrongly, that the picture had been posted in response to a question about male suicide. When Valenti corrected her on this point, Bloomfield offered a half-assed apology (“My bad”).
Then Bloomfield, demonstrating just how insincere her apology had been, decided to up the ante, concocting four “quotes” from thin air and attributing them to Valenti.
Naturally, as you’ll see if you follow any of these Tweets back to their original context on Twitter, many of Bloomfield’s fans assumed that these quotes were real.
Needless to say, some responded to Bloomfield’s dirty tricks with all-too predictable harassment of her target:
After brazenly libeling Valenti, Bloomfield went on to boast about it on her blog. In a post with the smug title “Jessica Valenti is not having a good day,” she wrote:
Now, these fake quotes may have been “utterly plausible” only to those who are ignorant of Valenti’s work, but in the hothouse world of the Men’s Rights movement there are people who would probably believe that Valenti eats babies. As I noted, JB’s followers had no trouble believing them.
Later in the post Bloomfield added, with more than a hint of maliciousness:
It’s not clear how having made-up quotes attributed to you counts as “owning your shit,” but I guess I just don’t understand Bloomfield’s higher morality.
Needless to say, in the real world, deliberately publishing false information about someone in order to harm their reputation is libel.
When confronted with this on Twitter, Bloomfield offered some inventive excuses:
— David Futrelle (@DavidFutrelle) August 2, 2014
Later on she attempted to prove that her libelous fake Valenti quotes didn’t matter … by making up things about me:
As I noted,
— David Futrelle (@DavidFutrelle) August 2, 2014
Of course, I’m no lawyer. I can only hope that some people who are lawyers are taking a good hard look at Bloomfield’s lies.
I would encourage you all to screenshot or otherwise archive Bloomfield’s self-incriminatory blog post, as well as her tweets, just in case she decides to talk to a lawyer and take them all down.
At this point, I think it’s probably safe to assume that anything and everything anyone from AVFM says should be taken not with a grain but with an entire shaker of salt.