Wednesday, September 2, 2009

We're fighting both sides of this war

Weigel makes a good point about the real impact of the death panels:
The White House did a lot of messaging about this, but the “death panel” smear, originating in a Sarah Palin post on Facebook, went wild in the liberal blogosphere and larger media infrastructure. Someone needs to count up the hours spent on liberal MSNBC mocking Palin or mocking Republicans who furthered the rumor, or the posts at liberal blogs doing the same. All those hours spent mocking Palin got some media victories — exposing Chuck Grassley as a bad faith actor in the health care debate, perhaps — but they largely spread around the rumor while putting nothing positive out there.

This strikes me as true, and it is one of the blind spots of the blogosphere form of discourse. The breathless, seat-of-your-pants style of commenting has some real merits, but it doesn't exactly allow for introspection. We liberals let ourselves get sidetracked with this stuff. Without all the oxygen, this story would have died out in a week, I'm guessing.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.