Coin dealer and ACCG monologist Dave Welsh apologises to all those he "bored into a coma" by obsessively and incessantly discussing one man's "anticollecting bosh" - cross posting the same messages to every conceivable English language artefact hunters' forum and discussion list to which he had access. He says he has tired of "reposting and commentary refuting this insufferable man’s misleading and deceptive blog posts", and announces he is now suspending his activities in that direction.
This will be my last commentary on archaeo-Goebbels, unless something really newsworthy occurs involving him, such as his appointment to a significant academic position or (hopefully this extremity won't happen) his assassination by an equally deranged fanaticor an East European black market antiquity dealer or a vicious thug in cahoots with UK metal detectorists, he means.
Still, he has the support of folk as articulate as Tom Albert:
Now this BS with the State department and collectors of ancient materials can really be muted with proof that a government/private effort does allow both to coexist and in fact assist each other for the same reasons, to learn and study the past, either as a lay person, or as a professional. http://finds.org.uk/documents/annualreports/2009-10.pdf [...] The thing is, what the people like Paul and the State department, is in both cases we are working with people ignorant of the subject, and no actual ground experience involving the discovery of ancient materials in either setting, as they are really one and the same. Any archological site that is excavated by amature or professional is forever changed, and no matter how hard one tries, it is forever altered and you are unable to return it to it's original state. Look at Ital, which can't protect it's greatest time. Now those ancient structures are falling apart.Note the place of the Portable antiquities Scheme in that garble-burble and the suggestion that the writer of this blog is (unlike Mr Albert I presume we are entitled to imagine) "ignorant of the subject" and (though active in archaeology since the early 1970s) has "no actual ground experience involving the discovery of ancient materials (sic)" in "either setting".
It is difficult to see how this kind of stuff can be considered as a refutation of attempts to discuss the archaeologically-damaging effects of no-questions-asked collecting and trade in its broader context.
Of course, this is not the first time Welsh has promised to stop fouling collectors' discussion lists lists with hate-posts about "Barford". [Tuesday, January 05, 2010: " New Year's Resolutions"] "To make no further attempts toward dialogue with anticollecting zealots...". (That lasted all of six weeks).
Perhaps now he has stopped his name-calling and schoolboy smear tactics, we might see some real discussion develop, with people who reflect on the wider implications of collecting and see room for improvement in the way these objects change hands, and not with those who simply and simplistically dismiss what the other side says about the no-questions-asked mode of collecting as "anti-collecting" (for it is not). Instead of the loudmouth naysaying dealers, where are the responsible collectors in this debate?