Actually, It’s about Ethics in Stockholm Syndrome

Typical #Gamergate celebrity reaction to any discussion of Baphomet.

Typical #Gamergate celebrity reaction to any discussion of Baphomet.

Often when I write about Gamergate and Baphomet, #Gamergaters demand I clarify how I am certain Gamergate and Baphomet are linked. They often point out to me that Gamergate top bananas get their share of harassment, with the implication that it is feminist extremists sending these threats. In most cases, Gamergate top brass blame specific instances of harassment on “aGG” individuals such as myself.

But in three cases I know of, top #Gamergate talking heads were actually targeted by Baphomet. I archived threads from Baphomet discussing the attack as it was in progress and documented these attacks in this space. In each case, I hoped that these Gamergate de facto leaders would actually look at the Baphomet threads, but none of them seem to want to see the sausage getting made, as it were. Still, it seems important enough for me that I want to review these attacks, to illustrate how Baphomet will hurt people within #Gamergate, the group that shelters Baphomet and profits off Baphomet’s work.

  1. Ralph Retort

Ralph Retort (aka Ethan Ralph) has a personal beef with Baphomet, which makes him the only GGer to explicitly disavow the group. In a February post reacting to Baphomet’s theft of Social Security Numbers, titled “Cancerous Baphomet Allegedly Gutted Over Credit Cards and SSN Postings”, Ralph wrote:

The fact is, they’re a cancer on 8chan. They should not only be gutted, but they should be deleted from the board altogether. Prominent GamerGate members have been tormented thanks to the baphomet board (if not the members themselves) time and time again (Liz, Remi, etc). Today they even started fucking with me, and I’ve been told to expect more attacks from those quarters. Instead of fear, I spent all day laughing at the bastards. One of the mods in particular actually tried to threaten your intrepid editor. It didn’t work, though, because baphomet is a paper tiger. They don’t scare me, and they shouldn’t scare anyone else. …

As I said on Twitter today, baphomet is a cancer, and their members are scum. Anyone in their clown crew who has broken the law, needs to be put in fucking jail. There is no middle ground for me. They’ve tarnished GamerGate with their bullshit long enough. Let me say publicly that I denounce their group, their members, and any operation that comes from their disgusting little board. I would encourage anyone else with good sense to do the same, but you are of course free to make your own judgments on the matter.

In response, Baphomet (and in particular, Vince, whom Ralph repeatedly called out by name) doxxed Ralph, his parents, his girlfriend, and allegedly compromised Ralph’s credit card information. Baphomet also attempted to frame Ralph for a SWAT attack they co-ordinated, and one Baphite sent Mercedes Carrera a picture of what they claimed was Ralph’s dick. Someone even set up a Twitter impersonator “@TheRaiphRetort”, which worked much the same as my own Baphomet impersonator “@idiediletante”.   Ralph may be tops on Baphomet’s list of #Gamergate people to harass, and Ralph definitely bears Baphomet no love.

But Ralph Retort is not above taking advantage of the fruit of Baphomet’s labors, either; for example, he wrote numerous articles about Sarah Nyberg in the wake of Baphomet claiming to have hacked her, all of which relied upon the leaked information. So although Ralph Retort is against Baphomet in principle (and especially when they attack him personally), Ralph does not generally excoriate Baphomet when they’re doxxing, harassing, or hacking his adversaries.

2. Milo Yiannopoulos / CH Sommers / Koretzky

Both Milo Yiannopoulos and Christina Hoff Sommers have had #Gamergate events spoiled this year by bomb threats. At one of them, a Baphomet user who calls himself “Eclipso” took responsibility for a bomb threat which cut short the afternoon panel of Airplay, a #Gamergate convention.

Gamergate should be out looking for this guy. But I don't think they will.

The Baphomet user who took responsibility for the Airplay threat.

At the time, I was unsure whether the threat was called in as a “fuck you” to the moderator Koretzky, who wasn’t being as co-operative as #Gamergate hoped, or as air support for Yiannopoulos, who was losing his cool during the afternoon panel. But this wasn’t the first time a joint appearance by Yiannopoulos and Based Mom has been spoiled by bomb threats, nor is it the first time they’ve blamed these threats on SJWs (despite a lack of evidence.) Both Yiannopoulos and Sommers hold Arthur Chu responsible for sending a bomb threat to their #GGinDC meetup, although there’s no evidence that Chu is actually responsible. (Chu had written the venue before the event, urging them to research Gamergate and consider cancelling; but there’s no evidence Chu sent a bomb threat once diplomacy failed.)

Although Yiannopoulos and Sommers both represent that these threats are really no big deal, they also have experienced firsthand how disruptive they can be. And to wit, Yiannopoulos has starting bringing escorts to his appearances, and Sommers seems not to want to appear at #Gamergate events without Yiannopoulos to act as her escort.

If I were to speculate, Yiannopoulos can’t call out Baphomet for spoiling his events with bomb threats because he’s dependent upon Baphomet for tips. Likewise, Sommers is reluctant to call out Baphomet on her own, since she knows she could be targeted hard, just like Ralph Retort was. In some ways, these people have no choice but to blame “SJWs” for the bad shit Baphomet does to them, because they’re indebted to Baphomet for doing their dirty work for them.

3. Sargon of Akkad

Sargon of Akkad (aka Carl Benjamin) was a career anti-SJW even before #Gamergate made that a viable way of supporting oneself. However, as Sargon became more popular, some fans complain that he has also become more moderate, more compromising for the sake of appealing to more than just #Gamergate. I don’t think this is the case – Sargon has become more mendacious, but not more moderate – but the impression that he might give quarter in the interest of keeping his Patreon open has made certain gamers pig-biting mad. And nobody’s madder about Sargon’s moderateness per se as the extremists on Baphomet: 

I just view it this way. He and his youtube buddies always think there is some conspiracy against him, even when fox new monetizes a vid he makes with fox news footage. If he is [doxxed], fucked with, or finds out about it, they will think its some SJW fem conspiracy against him. Then him and his youtube buddies will be triggered and make a bunch of retaliation vids and other things and him and KiA will go crazy.
As I said, I do not care about GG or SJWs. Im not either, although if I picked it would be GG. I just see the perfect oppertunity for lulz
To wit, Sargon was sent Google Street View images of his home the following day. But this isn’t even the first time Gamergate has trolled Sargon’s home address. He was also doxxed nearly a year prior to this, receiving a flatware set from Amazon which he opened on video. The flatware came with a note saying “please thrill yourself” from “EvilBobDALMYT and /gg/”. This was similar (if more polite, maybe) to the time Gamergate sent Chris Kluwe a dildo after his debate with Mike Cernovich.
Sargon always tries to put a laugh on it, but the fact is that he’s vulnerable to trolling from Baphomet whenever he says or does something they feel is not extreme enough. Sargon’s only response to this is to throw up blinders, opting for the “bury your head in the sand” strategy favored by ostriches and right-wing politicians. He will even choose to remain in ignorance if I send him archived Baphomet threads, so he can plausibly deny Baphomet’s involvement in one doxxing scandal or another. I assume this is because (like everyone else I discussed here) Sargon is simply too dependent on Baphomet for advantages over the SJWs to take a meaningful stand against them, even if that puts his own family at risk.

Gamergate’s Golden Handcuffs
In going through these cases, what strikes me is how Gamergate’s top brass seem to be vulnerable to harassment from their own fans. Ralph couldn’t speak out against Baphomet without getting targeted; and when other Gamergate figureheads saw Ralph getting harassed, they didn’t speak out about it either.
I can’t speak for why nobody defended Ralph’s hard stance on Baphomet identity theft (since #Gamergate would like to represent itself as against harassment), but I suspect the reason Mercedes Carrera laughed & played along with Baphomet’s trolling was because she knew she could be next. Likewise, I suspect that the reason Yiannopoulos and Sommers are intent on blaming bomb threats sent to their events on SJWs is because they know that speaking out about Baphomet will only make things worse for them. Similarly, Sargon of Akkad prefers to remain ignorant about what happens on Baphomet, because even though they know his address and have trolled him before, he’s better off with Baphomet as part-time allies than as full-time adversaries. And since Baphomet can be relied upon to stalk SJWs more often and more intensely than #Gamergate figures, perhaps #Gamergate’s superstars reason that so long as they ignore Baphomet, Baphomet will ignore them.
But the fact is, Gamergate allows Baphomet to hide in its ranks. Most Baphites are Gamergaters too, which is why Baphomet focuses its ire on “aGG” people with such intensity and regularity. Baphites are a subset of Gamergate’s fandom, and they demand to be catered to. If you stop short of 100% satisfaction, Gamergate (and by extension, Baphomet) typically pitches a tantrum. To quote Koretzky, “What happens when you give GamerGate panelists almost everything they want at AirPlay? They threaten to quit.”  Indeed, all the Gamergate celebrities I’ve mentioned here seem to regard getting doxxed and harassed as an inevitable cost of doing business on the Internet; like they’ve all developed Stockholm Syndrome from rubbing shoulders with Baphomet for too long.
This is why, I think, no #Gamergate figurehead (with the exception of Ralph Retort) is willing to stand up to Baphomet – they believe if they give Baph everything they want (which is mostly anyonymity and invisibility within the movement) that Baphomet will leave them be. But historically, this hasn’t been the case, so I don’t think it’ll happen going forward.
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