Thursday, 1 November 2007

Observation of the day

Is it just me, or is it increasingly the case that Crooked Timber is simply a collection of daily rants, often unsupported by any meaningful evidence except links to Wikipedia articles, against libertarian bloggers (some of which‡ mysteriously disappear later into the ether) by whiny European leftists? You’d think that a bunch of left-leaning academics could come up with something better to offer their readers than content that could have been written by second-tier Daily Kos diarists.

Case in point: this John Quiggin screed that takes a shotgun approach to going after apostate libertarians who never much cared for the Libertarian Party and champions The Presidential Candidate Who Shall Not Be Named as some sort of paragon of libertarianism (well, except for the whole anti-free trade, anti-open borders, anti-gay marriage thing… basically he’s Pat Buchanan with an M.D. and more support from hot chicks). Quiggin also thinks Nixon destroyed an electoral movement that had its day in the sun twenty years before 1968,† but that’s neither here nor there.

Then again, what the hell do I know; I’m the only person in my precinct* who voted for the Libertarian gubernatorial candidate last month, so clearly I’m some sort of idiot to begin with.

Update: Quiggin’s screed also mischaracterizes Cato’s position on the War in Iraq. I’m beside myself with surprise as to how such a blunder could have made it into his post.

Observant readers will note that this is a post of the essential type that it complains about, absent the gratuitous Wikipedia links. Whether this is by accident or design is left to the reader to determine.

‡ The articles, not the libertarian bloggers.
† George Wallace was from Dixie, and was a Democrat, but that doesn’t make him a “Dixiecrat,” and contra Kevin Phillips—and Quiggin—Nixon didn’t win in 1968 by coopting segregationists, who by and large supported Wallace. Phillips’ “southern strategy” was, in point of fact, a failure when the GOP attempted to use it in 1970. Read and understand.
* Unless someone else voted absentee or during early voting for Horne too; all the stats available show is that nobody voted for Horne on election day (it’s a direct transcript of the voting machine tape), but all the early and absentee votes are aggregated separately.


Any views expressed in these comments are solely those of their authors; they do not reflect the views of the authors of Signifying Nothing, unless attributed to one of us.

Technically, I believe Quiggin is in Australia, not Europe. So I suppose it’s ‘vaguely annoying leftists from around the world.’

I always find their posts on education and pedagogy to be interesting, though they’re not as frequent as they used to be.

[Permalink] 2. Wesley wrote @ Fri, 2 Nov 2007, 1:33 am CDT:

I got tired of their shrillness months ago and stopped going to the site. It’s too bad, because as Nick said, they used to have interesting academic posts.

Comments are now closed on this post.