Archive - Mar 2016

March 20th

Effect Does Not Follow Your Ignoble Cause

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Memo to Return of Kings' Writers: MANAGE YOUR DESPERATION BETTER.

It's Men's Rights Monday, and if there's one trait that abounds throughout everything I've read from the New York garbage strike that is Return of Kings, it's desperation. Sexual desperation, desperation for attention, desperation for validation. They'll never admit to it, but it drives nearly everything they write.

That clingy need to be important has manifested itself in several ways in the past. There was the incredible inflation of a Twitter survey to "prove" that they cost Star Wars a tiny fraction of a percentage point of box office returns. There's the constant belief that they're being persecuted for being "thought criminals" instead of garden-variety assholes. But their latest is the best yet. I will let the incredibly literal title set the stage. ACTUAL GARBAGE TITLE TIME!

"Two Major Media Outlets That Defamed ROK As “Pro-Rape” Are Laying Off Hundreds Of Journalists"

I could almost spend the rest of the column picking apart the title. Are the media outlets major? Is it slander to call Return of Kings "pro-rape"? (Hint: Nope!) Were the layoffs significant, or connected to that one time they wrote about a bunch of misogynists having secret beers together? What do you think?

The stretching required to make this article possible starts with the very first Two words: "Only weeks". For the record, I made fun of the meetup bullshit that led to the "pro-rape" labeling six weeks ago. The meetup was scheduled for Feb. 6, The articles about that meetup were before that. So we're pushing two months here, and "only weeks" is deliberately disingenuous.

And it goes on from there. On and on and on and on. If brevity is the soul of wit, then David Garrett Brown is soulless and witless. Neither of us want to go through the whole thing, so I'll just hit the high points. The media outlets in question are Fairfax Media, owners of the Sydney Morning Herald, and Guardian Media Group, owners of, well, The Guardian.

As a way of demonstrating the deep perfidy to which Return of Kings and it's rape-loving founder were subject to, Brown notes that "some 1,600 other publications" reported on the meetup and controversy. So, 1,600 publications reported on it, and, nearly two months later, two of them had layoffs? As percentages go, it's better than the Star Wars incident, but not by much.

Layoffs in the media world are nothing new, of course. Especially when it comes to newspapers, who have spent the past decade trying to find their place in a broadband world. But it's worth taking a look at the pseudo-logic chain Brown employs, because it is quite... evocative.

"The central dilemma faced by the very bloated Fairfax Media and Guardian Media Group is that their championing of elite and politically correct viewpoints is not matched by reader numbers and the dollar signs they are meant to bring. Additionally, advertisers have become far less enthused about spending tens of thousands of dollars or more for every portion of a printed page or an online banner."

What caused the car crash, Mr. Brown? "Well, the central dilemma is liberal over-regulation of public infrastructure, including freedom-impinging speed limits and nanny-state insistence on helmets and seat belts. Additionally, the driver failed to brake and hit the wall at 50 miles per hour."

He goes on to blame the Farifax employees for going on strike, then says he's sure Guardian people feel the same way even though he's observed no evidence of that. Because why stop making up shit now? He also ties all the problems at the Guardian on their employment of Jessica Valenti, one of the MRM's public enemies for writing columns critical of Gamergate and also having ovaries.

Of course, in the article Brown himself links to, it says the big falloff in revenue is due to supermarket chains cutting back on print advertising, and that two Rupert Murdoch newpapers just went through similar layoffs, but since those facts would conflict with Brown's delusion that hordes of comment thread trolls furious with Valenti's column stopped clicking on sidebar ads, I'm sure his brain never allowed his eyes to even see them. Because if they don't make it all about themselves, it's sure as fuck nobody else will.