Thursday, August 13, 2009

Because Our Commenters Deserve the Best

In March 2008, my first month of full-time blogging here at The Other McCain, I had 6,000 total visits. As of today -- approaching a cumulative total of 2.2 million visits -- we've already had more than 126,000 visits this month, which isn't yet halfway over.

More readers means more comments. Because I'm notorious (not the same as being famous, but better than being anonymous) comments have always been moderated here, which seems rather to discourage some people.

The delay caused by the moderation process prevents the spontaneous thrill of seeing your own words posted immediately, but it can't be helped. I don't mind the raving left-wing moonbats -- even most of Isabella's comments get approved -- but as I've sometimes explained to Smitty, there are two things I can't stand in the comments:
  • False-flag trolls, who pretend to be conservatives as a subterfuge for pushing liberal messages; and
  • Attacks on the prestige of the blog, which have the effect (and, I believe, the purpose) of telling readers that this entire project is a waste of time.
Don't even try putting that kind of crap in my comments. If you want to attack me, start your own freaking blog and we'll have a Rule 4 flame-war. But you're not going to hijack my bandwidth in order to tell my readers not to read the blog.

OK, all of that was prelude to explaining that yesterday, under the title "The Road to Dunkirk," I posted this quote from Appeasement by A.L. Rowse:
"The practical way of looking at things . . . may serve well enough in ordinary, normal times. But our times are not 'normal' in the good old Victorian sense, and never will be again. . . . These men, even Halifax, were essentially middle-class, not aristocrats. They did not have the hereditary sense of the security of the state, unlike Churchill, Eden, the Cecils. Nor did they have the toughness of the 18th-century aristocracy. They came at the end of the ascendancy of the Victorian middle-class, deeply affected as that was by high-mindedness and humbug. They all talked, in one form or another, the language of disingenuousness and cant: it was second nature to them – so different from Churchill. . . . It meant that they failed to see what was true, until too late, when it was simply a question of survival."
That quote prompted the comment:
I feel like you're trying to tell me something, but I just can't wrap my brain around it.
Which in turn inspired me to write an essay at the Hot Air Green Room:
Astute reader! I had been re-reading Rowse (whose brilliant little book was assigned reading in a college British history class I took 30 years ago) when Dan Riehl called yesterday to talk about this "Gryphen"/Griffin affair.
For the past week, the anti-Palin blogger Griffin and his PDS-affected buddies have been claiming that Dan and I are “minions” doing the bidding of Palin’s team. In actuality, I can't even get a comment from them. Two phone calls and a text message yesterday, seeking a response to the latest gossip tabloid smear, went unanswered.
Sic semper hoc. The people who control access to Republican leaders go out of their way to prevent their bosses from ever having direct contact with any rank-and-file conservative who wants to help. It's a tragically familar story . . .
It's 3,800 words, so read the whole thing. You deserve it.


  1. I sometimes think about moderating comments. Recently an anonymous commenter has been making scurrilous posts that attack my integrity, with no specifics. I banned him so he can't post anymore -- unless he uses someone else's computer with a different I.P. address. If so, then I will have to implement moderation.

  2. I just read your article at the Green Room. Wow. Why doesn't TAS use you for longer pieces such as that? Not only is it well-written, but it's backed up with solid reportage. Just when I was starting to get fed up with punditry of any stripe, I discover that you're actually a bona-fide journalist, and a darned good one.

    This is an important and sobering story, and should be a featured article in TAS ASAP.