Blog Cowardice


Objectologist the Son is at it again, another grumpy post directed at PE, but, of course, he is not brave enough to actually cite or link to our conversation here: we are anonymous others who say things and do things “somewhere in the blogosphere” and so on. Read the post – judge for yourself.

Strangely enough, the objections that the Son raises are supposed to show us here how the objections we raise only reveal to everyone our careerist selves but, of course, as irony would have it, the Son ends up revealing his own self in his hapless and sulky post – someone quickly post a comment there about how he is awesome and how all those jerks at PE will burn in hell.

As for the actual “argument” advanced in the whiny post, I give you two citations from Objectologist the Son’s recent posts:

Exhibit A: Continue reading

How Public Is Your Intellectual?


UPDATE: Another take on the public intellectual from The Economist.

From The Chronicle of Higher Education:

Disquisitions about public intellectuals usually conclude that they ain’t what they used to be. Subtitles from recent books on the topic include A Study of Decline and An Endangered Species? Indeed, the major point of debate is dating the precise start of the decline and fall. For some critics,Götterdämmerung started in the 1950s; for others, the 1930s. More-curmudgeonly writers place the date earlier, stretching back to the heyday of John Stuart Mill or even the death of Socrates.

That’s quite an opening, I thought, including the two words I do not know but like: “disquisitions” and “curmudgeonly” – very “higher eduction”… Daniel W. Drezner adds another take to the ever-continuing conversation about “public intellectuals.” Apparently, Drezner tells us, some people are complaining about the fact that internet and blogs are destroying the intellectual debate, make intellectual encounters impossible, annoy the old intellectuals with their “good old days” approaches and expectations. Continue reading

Blog Stats Raise Questions.


So over the last week or so our stats went up as if there was some strange interest in the blog without any visible reason for the increased attention – I know Shahar, Nicole and I (plus the efforts of the now-forgotten Paco and Lou) agreed early on to spend at least an hour each day clicking on our blog to drive the stats up, but this is getting ridiculous. Is someone out there obsessively checking and rechecking what’s happening on the blog? Are we secretly being considered for some sort of super-blogging award? The suspense is killing me…

(not)Reading, Reviewing, Blogging


I received the latest issue of n+1 over the weekend. I haven’t looked at it too closely just yet, but this passage caught my attention in a longer section called “Book Review Nation:”

…nearly ten years after their advent, the Amazon reviews are still essentially anonymous, unfiltered glimpses into the habits of red-blooded American readers…With notable exceptions (and it’s not hard to spot them), the reviewers have no institutional affiliation; no investment of ego; no recompense; and, most important of all, no one goes on Amazon to write up a book he hasn’t read. That’s what blogs are for.

Indeed!