Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Blindspot

This piece by  Freddie deBoer on the milquetoast, capitulation-happy people who dominate the "left" in blogging today, and how its membership excludes opinions that are actually leftist, isn't just good. It isn't just great. It's ASTONISHING. Even if you disagree with it, it's one of the best pieces of long-form personal essay-writing I've read this year.  It's a rich, meaty smack in the face to those who argue that "blogging is dead" by reminding people what the hell it was always about.

I may have more to say later. But I'll tell you two things: Freddie is going on the blogroll RIGHT NOW,  and I don't have the faintest clue what the hell happened to Matthew Yglesias, either.


  1. Anonymous11:04 PM

    That meandering piece is verbose, filled with backpedaling, and contains classics from the author like:

    "I am someone who frequently develops great hope for a hypothetical libertarianism"


  2. Oh no! Verbosity and and complexity!

    And, actually, the "hypothetical libertarianism" piece was relatively compelling. Drawing the distinction between the sort of lockstep, by-the-numbers "markets-uber-alles" attitude that calls itself libertarianism, as compared to the multiplicity of individual ideas that would define healthy libertarianism is something that needed to be done.

    Left-anarchists are just as much "libertarians" as the Market Fundamentalists are, if not more so, and civil libertarians like Glenn Greenwald have as much to say about protecting individual rights and liberties as anything coming out of Reason, Cato and their ilk.

  3. Anonymous12:37 PM

    Verbosity is not something to be admired in this medium (which strangely, the author attacks the above-mentioned Greenwald for even though his length contains a lot more solid content).

    Backpedaling is not complexity. The whole thing was a wobbly, embarrassing mess. And libertarianism in any form is still creepy authoritarian hero/money-worship.

  4. As a civil libertarian, and as someone who has read more than a few anarchists bemoan the capture of the word "libertarian", I find that latter assertion baffling.

    As for the rest? The "medium" is whatever one chooses it to be, since it is essentially many-to-many opinion writing, and to whinge about "backpedaling" without providing examples only shows one to be prey to the classical Hobgoblin of Little Minds.