Wayne Sayles June 24, 2014, 3:30 pm
Wayne Sayles likes to appear to be seeking dialogue, just not on his blog. I queried the name calling and admonition to go and "get ***ed" used there on Thursday, August 28, 2014 regarding myself, and posted a link to my answer to the point made there about the Syrian sanctions (trying to make out that bolstering the licit trade was an attack on it) and nothing else. It was not posted, but this was his reply:
By the way, I routinely block posts from certain agitators in my comments section for that very reason. This blog is not a forum for debate.Well, we can discuss it here on this blog as part of the ongoing public heritage debate if Mr Sayles would like to say why he thinks stopping stolen, looted and smuggled artefacts coming to the UK from Syria is an attack on legal collectors and dealers. I do not get the point made of his blog, and I am sure I am not the only one eager to hear a more detailed exposition of the dealer's point of view. That's unlikely, but not - you understand - because he has any problems articulating such ideas. Oh no, no it's our fault:
I went through a phase of indignant rebuttal to archaeo-blogger polemics but realized that it was consuming time, energy and enthusiasm better directed toward more worthy endeavors. It is a futile confrontation. I try to ignore them and reach out to those who are capable of intelligently weighing facts and circumstances.Like metal detectorist John Howland he means. He's unlikely to attract them to a little brown blog which allows no debate. What he actually means is he really has no answers to the questions which the archaeo-bloggers urging responsible collecting are raising. Especially as he is trying to make people believe that when we argue for more transparency and accountability in the antiquities trade in order to force out the dodgy dealers, what we are instead doing is characterised as "an effort to clamp down on legitimate collecting". It takes a specific mindset to appreciate how trying to reinforce the legitimacy of the legitimate trade is somehow an attack on that (very same) legitimate trade, rather than being an effort to clamp down on the illicit antiquities trade. These are nothing more than weasel words of a dealer in denial.
Clamping down on the illicit antiquities trade is surely something one would have thought that the collectors Sayles claims to represent would be all for, though it might make some shady dealers and their shadowy business partners rather unhappy perhaps. So on whose side is Sayles and his weasel worded denials? I think those "who are capable of intelligently weighing facts and circumstances" do not blindly buy dugup antiquities on the no-questions-asked market. They come to sites like SAFE, David Gill, Rick St Hilaire, Donna Yates and mine for the "facts and circumstances", rather than those of the weasel wording ageing shopkeepers moaning that nobody's listening to him any more.
Intelligently weighing facts and circumstances, it seems to me that the reader can really come to only one conclusion why US dealers are behaving in this manner, and why.