james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
[personal profile] james_davis_nicoll
Jennifer Pournelle reports
Jerry Pournelle passed away peacefully in his sleep this afternoon. Survived by 5 children and his wife Roberta. May he rest in peace.

Date: 2017-09-09 12:22 am (UTC)
jessie_c: Me in my floppy hat (Default)
From: [personal profile] jessie_c
Pity his humanity predeceased him by so many decades. He was once a great man.

Date: 2017-09-09 05:43 am (UTC)
glaurung_quena: (Default)
From: [personal profile] glaurung_quena
This. Those eulogizing him appear to be talking about someone other than the rabid right wing asshole that I know from his blog.

Date: 2017-09-09 06:40 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
The first thing I read by JEP (though I didn't know it at the time) was an unusually well written letter to the editor of 'The General' magazine in 1974 or 1975 about the wargame 'Tobruk'.

Later I read some of his early military SF, which started off very good by my standards of the time (do the military parts read like plausible unfamiliar military history). They got gradually worse, and I eventually stopped reading.

I really liked Mote, but Pournelle's work with Niven got worse much more quickly. For a long time I kept buying them, hoping the next one would be better, but that never happened.

I started reading 'Computing at Chaos Manor' back when it was a column in the print version of Byte magazine in the late 70s. It was entertaining and worth reading as long as he stayed away from politics. The decline was gradual.

He always had obnoxious views--but they were easier to hide and easier to ignore in decades past.

May those who wish to remember him fondly, remember him for the things he did well. RIP.


Date: 2017-09-09 01:16 pm (UTC)
jessie_c: Me in my floppy hat (Default)
From: [personal profile] jessie_c
The eulogizers have the privilege of being able to ignore the rabid right-wing parts of his personality.

Date: 2017-09-10 09:26 pm (UTC)
ethelmay: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ethelmay
I thought Ctein's comment (and his follow-up) on Whatever was quite enlightening: https://whatever.scalzi.com/2017/09/08/rip-jerry-pournelle/#comment-839957

Date: 2017-09-10 09:45 pm (UTC)
jessie_c: Me in my floppy hat (Default)
From: [personal profile] jessie_c
I am that type of person that Pournelle wanted to disappear. It's incredibly difficult to read his books and see people like me being enslaved and/or gleefully killed off because he didn't think we're real people.

I have never had the privilege of being able to ignore his brand of bigotry, and so when I see people praise him, it's hard to take.

The alcoholism thing explains, but does not excuse, some of his actions.

Date: 2017-09-10 08:01 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] eub
There but for the grace of God.

Date: 2017-09-09 02:21 am (UTC)
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
From: [personal profile] mme_hardy
I loved his books so much.

Date: 2017-09-09 01:23 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] neowolf2
I'm not that interested in his political position, but I am interested in how his technological opinions held up (although these are also influenced by politics, of course).

Date: 2017-09-09 01:30 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] wakboth
RIP, Dr. Pournelle.

I enjoyed the Falkenberg books quite a bit.

Date: 2017-09-09 02:41 pm (UTC)
thewayne: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thewayne
Wow, that's sad. He was born the same year as my dad, who is still ticking after a cancer scare and successful treatment last year.

Personally, I preferred Niven's writing of the pair, but I really enjoyed Jerry's computer writing in Byte Magazine. After Byte stopped print form, I didn't put too much effort in to following him.

Date: 2017-09-09 03:55 pm (UTC)
julian: Picture of Julian Street. (Default)
From: [personal profile] julian
I (somehow) never got into an argument with him online, so I mostly only know him by his books, which weren't gorgeously written, but were definitely science fiction of a certain entertaining type.

And I really did actually like _Mote In God's Eye_.

Sympathy to those remaining.

Date: 2017-09-10 05:42 am (UTC)
wild_irises: (Default)
From: [personal profile] wild_irises
I knew him (never well) before he was particularly a right-wing asshole, and I never liked him. I will provide two anecdotes.

At a convention in the 1970s, Marta Randall was putting forward the position that English is the tool of the writer's trade (if the writer is writing in English, of course) and thus it behooves a writer to understand the rules and expectations of the language. Jerry said, "You spell. I'll sell."

At another convention, probably also in the 1970s, but possibly in the early 1980s, there was a line at the coffee shop. Jerry was loudly and determinedly berating the hostess for not seating him in advance of other people who had been in line before him and his wife, "because I'm a famous writer."

This would have been risible if he hadn't been so cruel to the poor woman who, after all, couldn't walk away from him.

Date: 2017-09-10 02:40 pm (UTC)
jessie_c: Me in my floppy hat (Default)
From: [personal profile] jessie_c
"The characteristic of a well-bred man is, to converse with his inferiors without insolence, and with his superiors with respect, and with ease."

-His Lordship the Earl of Chesterfield, 1748

Date: 2017-09-10 06:02 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] keith_morrison
Nothing ticks me off more when dealing with a person when they try the "Do you know who I am?" bullshit. That tells me more about how petty and assholish a person really is than anything else.

Date: 2017-09-10 05:53 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] neowolf2
From his last post, he said he had a cold/flu (con crud from DragonCon, he thought), and was experiencing nausea.

Heart attack sometimes presents as a combination of a flu-like feeling of unwellness, combined with nausea, but without the more typical chest/shoulder/arm pains. This is more common in women, but can happen in men too. If this is what he had then it may well have gone on to kill him hours later.

Date: 2017-09-10 11:04 pm (UTC)
ethelmay: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ethelmay
I thought that, too. Further concerning that post I had better say nothing, except that I wish I had not read it.

Date: 2017-09-11 11:39 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] neowolf2
Some positive eulogy links from Norman Spinrad and George R.R. Martin in File770.



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