November 06, 2004

Winston Review, No. 18


Writing is not neccessarily something to be ashamed of -- but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards.
- Robert A. Heinlein


One of the odd things about meeting bloggers is the Gibsonian shock of meatspace conversation (Quotulatiousness has evidence of the astounding spare-tire of the Flea!) in comparison with the genteel, mediated conversations of "the internet". Another is the realization that people, like, read this stuff. While I try to be mindful of my parents and my job and those readers whose good opinion of me I wish to preserve it is also true that I am alone and, yes, in my pajamas as I type these words. The same words my server statistics suggest will be read in Spain and Vietnam and who knows where else as well as by my downstairs neighbour and the newspaper magnate who is about to offer me a startlingly well-paid weekly column (crossing fingers and toes about that last regrettably fictional reader). There is something entirely solitary about blogging even as it is the most exhibitionistic and recklessly public hobby I have ever had. I believe this to be as true for the pseudonymous LiveJournal writer whose audience is a circle of friends as it is for Glenn Reynolds looking out from the Olympian heights of the blogosphere.

I was ordering a pint of "Boddingtons" at the bar toward the beginning of last night's blogger bash when a gentleman introduced himself and his wife as American tourists. Were we bloggers?, he asked. Yes, I replied, and observed how good it was to find Americans visiting Toronto. I was curious what they had thought of this week's electoral result. Were they fleeing the forces of chimperialism or had they been well pleased by events? We're celebrating!, he said. Around you, I replied, are Canadian warbloggers and you, sir, are in the right place.

This is the part that left me speechless. He thanked us. Not Canadian bloggers in particular but bloggers in general for making the case the MSM does not make and doing our best to help bring about the result that had to be brought about. So while they were not in the room it remains true that Powerline, INDC Journal, LGF, Ace of Spades HQ and so many more were with us in spirit. There has been much debate about how influential was the role of bloggers in the recent presidential election and much speculation north of the border as to how Canadian bloggers can more actively intervene in our broken federalism. The Winston Review is a Flea-feature intended to offer spirited, uplifting alternatives to the defeatists and apologists of the mainstream media. This week's Review is dedicated to that continuing discussion. One thing is clear. When a man on vacation goes out of his way to thank strangers for their pajama-clad pamphleteering we have to face facts: our writing is not only for ourselves.

Best wishes to David Artemiw, Babbling Brooks, Being American in T.O., Brock: On The Attack, Canadian Headhunter, Free Advice, Let It Bleed, The Meatriarchy, Rick McGinnis, Political Staples, Quotulatiousness, Radio Weisblogg, Relapsed Catholic, Taylor & Company, The Tiger in Winter and The Transplanted Texan.


This week in the Red Box:

Cormallen: Belmont Club argues that if the recent United States election was "revolutionary it was also defensive in character, but in the way of Midway and Stalingrad; a kind of turning of the tide." I link to this post as a supporter of both gay marriage and anti-antiWar candidates.

Bush's 'crime'? Just being a patriot: Janet Daley writes that "anybody who says that this kind of pathological hatred - the kind that relishes the loss of innocent life as a well-deserved "lesson" - would evaporate with the election of John Kerry, or any other contender who was remotely in tune with the American political culture, is trying very hard to deceive himself or the rest of us" (via Being American in T.O.).

Guardian Angels: Michael Ledeen thanks The Guardian for helping turn Ohio in the right direction. "Once again, our enemies save America." (via lgf)

Why the Angry Left is Failing: Davids Medienkritik offers a rallying cry, "Letís Break the German Mediaís Monopoly!"

Islamists Declared War on the US 25 Years Ago Today: The Jawa Report notes an anniversary that went entirefly unremarked by the mainstream media.

... I Don't Get It: Let It Bleed defends President Bush' bellicosity: "Pointing out that he's "war-like" is like giving him a gold star."

The Liberal Case for Bush, Again: Michael Totten points to the millions of Iranians who find hope in President Bush' reelection.

Silent America Speaks: Bill Whittle sums it up nicely. "We have four years to remake our society; four years to reclaim our media, our entertainment industry, our universities and our children." Time to read History again.

Clash of Civilizations: Cicero at Winds of Change reflects on Theo Van Gogh's "last piteous pleadings" to his murderer.

Your courage. Your cheerfulness. Your resolution.
Will bring us Victory.

Posted by the Flea at November 6, 2004 12:40 PM | TrackBack

How surreal it must have been -- that whole "thank you" scenario! My blog is, quite literally, crap; but I tend to think of my posts as being flung into space. Occasionally, a friend will drop in and comment on my scribbles. But to be met, in public, by FOREIGNERS (grin) who THANK YOU?! For those etherflung musings?? How. Strange. How strangely wonderful! [Spam filter busted me on the word bi*arre. I hate spammers. Die!]

You should also know that I'm crossing all available appendanges for the newspaper magnate to recognize your writings, as well.

Posted by: Margi at November 6, 2004 05:22 PM

I went to the voting station with my American husband to see Democracy in action on Nov 2nd. When it was time for him to go into his booth and tick off his ballot, I went outside. A few Kerry people, mistaking me for an American who had been deprived the right to vote -- were there asking if everything was ok. I explained I was from Canada. They were all shocked to see a Canadian in their midst and delighted to meet me. (Funny - I thought Americans were all hating Canadians... if you believe all the blogs on the subject from the Shotgun) One of them then asked me if I knew about immigration situation in Canada. I laughed and asked if he was joking. He and his wife shook their head - no, they were quite serious. My last advice to them, were they to seriously consider immigrating was to keep their american health insurance current. Just a different experience. I then suggested they contact a Canadian immigration lawyer that I know in BC.

Posted by: MWW at November 6, 2004 06:22 PM

Fear not the belly roll. I, were we are to meet in a pub, I will have to explain that my modest girth and ballcap and midden of hair are my own invention, preceding the advent of the millstone of the left, my left, Michael Moore, by decades and certainly of my own account. We may disagree by times about what we write and think but I think we are glad that we write and think. Sorry I missed the party. Stop holding these things on my wedding anniversary or my good wife's birthday and I may be there. The excellent Kingston Brew Pub is always available as an alternate location.

Posted by: Alan at November 6, 2004 11:39 PM

Hi Flea,

Thanks for the link. If I remember the "other" Laurier blogger I will let you know. My memory is so bad that it might have actually been you in the first place though.

I too hope that you manage to get an actually published gig.

Posted by: Greg Staples at November 7, 2004 08:53 PM
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