Thursday, June 09, 2005

Outside of Inside The Wagon Circle

You've heard the saying that it's the Democrat style to circle the wagons and then start firing inwards? Yay for the unstoppable wagon circling technique reaching the blogosphere! I have a few disconnected opinions.

First, as a regular reader of both blogs, it was obvious that RJ was never a good fit for BoP. His style is far too direct for the Cali-wool-and-egg-head abstractions that make up BoP's stock in trade. Even if the majority of the posters at BoP aren't from Cali, I always get the feeling their posts blow in on a warm ocean breeze and attempt to caress your temples(and only someone who's spent a great deal of time in California could take that "new politics" thing seriously). RJ's posts roar up on a Harley, give you the finger, then tell you to take it outside. This incongruity wasn't going to last and the only suprise is how long it did.

Second, this points up why, if you want to maintain some level of personal integrity and you're interested in both political candidates and political commentary, you should deny yourself personal access to the people you're supposed to be covering. As Our Man Somerby constantly points out, one of the reasons our Washington Press Corps is so vacuous is that its members go to the same fancy cocktail parties as the politicians. Being nice to your friends in print - and leaving the public out to dry - is called "civility". The BoP guys are clearly junior insiders, so of course they're going to insist on "civility". RJ is better off without that constraint. For myself I'm glad I'll never have more than blogospheric access to, say, Wes Clark, because when he does finally say something idiotic I'll feel totally free to say so. Blogs are supposed to be cool because bloggers are supposed to be unfettered by the civility requirement. That BoP is so fettered just shows why their "new politics" is really just more of the same ol'.

Finally, the censorship question and the Stalinization of a "liberal blog". ARE YOU EFFIN' KIDDING ME? Yes, deleting all of RJ's posts was a totally lame move, and just shows where Newberry's priorities lie. But it is Newberry's blog, and he can do what he wants. Sure, it's lame, but it's not like he's going to get RJ banned from Typepad or or skippy. IMHO, skippy is a better (and funnier) blog anyway.

Oh yeah, on the germination of the dust-up: Dean is doing a fine job of riling up the base, and Edwards is doing a fine job of trying to be pragmatic and sensible. Neither one of them is going to be president. I'd prefer we'd be having arguments and purges over ideas, not tactics, but that's why I'm an anonymous software engineer Baltimore blogger and not a DC insider.
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