The Sad Puppies Mindset

David Freer has an interesting article up at the Mad Genius Club detailing the strange disconnect between the SJW’s that support the Hugo’s and the Sad Puppies who think the whole campaign is a bit of fun at their expense.

It’s been curious to see how these different world views shape both the way people write, and see the world beyond that. We’re into the final stages of needing to register as a Hugo voter for the Sad Puppies 3 campaign. Now you might say ‘this is the third attempt, why are you repeating the same experiment over and over again. It failed last year.’

You might, as this poster –‘Captain Carnage’ on Brad Torgersen’s ‘Why Sad Puppies is going to destroy Science Fiction’ argue:

If you guys want to get specific works that you believe do interest a wide audience on the ballot (which is fine, of course), I think you are making some mistakes here. The biggest of them is pissing off people you have to be in good terms with to win a Hugo. Saying that Hugo voters like stupid books is not going to help you, because you need a sizeable cut of regular Worldcon goers’ votes, even if you get new people to attend. I very much doubt that accusing people of political biases when in fact they only have different tastes than you is getting you anywhere.

Why not do a positive campaign? Why not say that Ancillary Justice was a good and fun SF novel (which I think it was) and, by the way, look at this great book by Eric Flint of Tad Williams or whoever?

The problem ‘Captain Carnage’ – (CC to save me typing) has is that he begins from a totally different world view to most the Sad Puppies. He assumes that the typical Sad Puppy supporter wants a work that he likes to win the Hugo Award, because that would give the author of their choice cachet, legitimacy as writers, and recognition, and that the WorldCon goers would be important for that. CC assumes that because it very important to him, it is to others. He assumes his (or her) worldview is neatly central and held by 99% of all people who could read sf, and that Worldcon attendees are typical and representative, and despite the stats showing the left-wing and far left wing nominees and winners to be close to infinitely improbable, there is no political bias, or at least not an important one. He assumes the system is fair and reasonable (it has given him pretty much what he wants, books he likes therefore it must be), and that it is possible to win by playing nice, unlike last year in which the Sad Puppy slate came last…

The Sad Puppies look at the same situation somewhat differently. Firstly, they didn’t set out to win the Hugo Award, having almost no interest (other than possibly some vague nostalgia for the award when it actually was a good signal to a wide audience of readers about what they would probably enjoy) in the award. It has little value to them. For them the important thing was to show it was politically biased (and, um, to have fun mocking the SJW’s who took it all very seriously). They set out to do the direct opposite of what CC assumed they wanted – to show that the ‘winners’ in the recent past had no cachet, deserved no recognition and had no legitimacy. To force into the public eye the fact that what been the sf/fantasy’s premium award was now simply a worthless left-wing cause de jour rubber-stamp. To show what a biased and minority group the Worlcon Hugo voters and nominees were. The only way for the Sad Puppies to lose, was to win (and even then, they had the happy thought of ‘splody heads to console them, as the award is important to CC and friends, who would then have to admit they were at least as good as their idols), and the only way for the Worlcon/Hugo establishment to ‘win’, to establish it was legitimate contest not biased by political affiliation, was to lose. The Sad Puppies forced the the WorldCon/Hugos old guard into a place where they showed the system is not fair or reasonable to an awful lot of people who had never considered it before. The Sad Puppies slate already knew it was not possible to win by ‘playing nice’ or doing anything else. They’ve all been the targets of the loony left while trying to play nice, for years. (the record is pretty clear. There hasn’t been a ‘nice’ winner who isn’t left to far left for years.) So: As far as the Sad Puppies are concerned they succeeded last year, beyond their wildest expectations even, it was fun watching the SJW ants scurry and squall, and therefore doing it again makes sense. If you want to support them go here.

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