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Starting the Morning After Lunch & Thinking About That Which I Don't Read

Well, I had some errands to run this morning, so I've been away from the computer. Of course, on these days, I seem always find multitudinous items on which I want to comment as I make my rounds of the Internet. This limit on my time relates to two items that I read while multitasking (i.e., eating my lunch at the same time).

Jay Nordlinger has written another awesome Impromptus (yes, "awesome" has meaning outside of the high school). He begins with Dowd, who seems intent on proving to everybody else that she feels so secure that she will never be forced to wear a burqa that she needn't bother to realize it consciously enough to influence her view of American politics. (Two language things: 1) why do we give Arab-type words a pass on the "u" after "q" rule? 2) I'll be looking for justification to coin the term "dowdiness," so watch for it.)

The following comment from Nordlinger got me thinking: "Yesterday, I read Maureen Dowd's column in the New York Times, proving that I'm an idiot." Perhaps if I ever succeed at making my living as a writer, I'll read columnists such as Dowd. As it is, not only do I lack the time to waste on such predictably awful material, but I also lack the perspective to avoid becoming frustrated and angry that such a woman makes her living doing something that I long to do in such a way.

Which leads me to a post on dcthornton.blog. Darmon Thornton comments on a post by Oliver Willis, in which Mr. Willis declares his distaste for finding "everyone agreeing with" him. Too much agreement, he suggests, would make him like most "warblogs"/"conservabloggers," who "are caught in an eternal echo chamber of voices that are all in agreement with each other." Darmon writes at length to distance himself from the "echo" folks. I'm not going to do that.

It has seemed to me that arguments, articles, posts, and ideas find their way around the Internet much more readily than they ever have in any other medium (even including college as a medium). Willis refers to the homogeneity of conservatives' blogrolls — has he ever counted them up? Most have dozens of sites listed, and visiting each shows that they don't tend to simply repeat each other. Either they add different observations to the same links or find different items in the news to which to link. Myself, I already spend too much time blogging as it is, without going in search of even more opinions with which I will surely disagree... at length. I don't think Oliver has noticed that most conservative bloggers keep themselves interested (and interesting) by specifically going in search of arguments with which they disagree.

Which leads me to Oliver's blog. I visit oliverwillis.com on occasion — partly because his tagline is great ("Like Kryptonite to Stupid") and he's geographically close to me in the real world. But I've found that he repeats many of the same erroneous assumptions and statements that I've just grown weary of debunking over and over (e.g., Fox News reads from a right-wing talking points memo and being agreed with ought to send up red flags).

I'll still check in for something new on occasion, but as for regular visits, my feeling is that I've heard the points, and there's no benefit to my revisiting them on a daily basis.

Posted by Justin Katz @ 01:37 PM EST