Saturday, January 24, 2004

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Behold: Comments

Behold: Comments. Sorry it took so long. It actually takes approximately 2 [correction: 5] minutes to do it, but I keep hearing horror stories about spamming and suchlike, so I kept putting it off until I had time to look into all that stuff. Now I realize that I will never get around to doing that. So I just put the comments up anyway.

[oops...looks like I've been given a choice between (a) having a comments section and (b) having a readable blog...

Stand by.]

[voila! (or, as the editors of my highschool yearbook would put it, viola!): comments.]

[Incidentally, I hope that we can keep the comments section reasonably cooperative and non-hostile. I guess If you've read this blog much you'll realize that this hope doesn't spring from some ooey-gooey lefty preference for dialectical pacifism. Rather, it springs from a conviction that we should (often, at least) be really trying to figure things out, and a belief that once people start getting mad it's almost impossible to make rational progress. Everybody gets snarky sometimes, including (perhaps especially) me, but I hope we can aim for less rather than more of that kind of thing, even when I myself fall off the wagon, rhetorically speaking. There are plenty of places on the web to smite thy enemies; consequently adding one more such place wouldn't really accomplish much. On the other hand, there aren't that many places devoted to cooperative discussion, so it seems important to at least have a go at developing and maintaining such a place. And let's face it: sitting around in your office flaming people on the internet is a tragic waste of the human spirit. Anyway, none of this is to say that people shouldn't speak their minds, disagree with each other (and me) as necessary, have fun, etc.; nor is it to say that I'll always be level-headed and even-handed myself. It's just an exhortation to aim for less rather than more hostility as a general rule. Blah, blah, blah. Given how reasonable the e-mails I get tend to be, I reckon there's no real need to even say this stuff to regular readers. And it won't have any effect on the trolls... So I'll shut up now.]

[One last word: as a paradigm, I'd hold up the comments section of Mighty Tacitus. Solid comments, respectful disagreement, healthy atmosphere, IMHO. Oh, and like Tacitus, I reserve the right to delete extremely vicious comments on account of their viciousness, but NOT merely because I disagree with them.]


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