There were times, many years ago in a galaxy far away, when I was a BC Assistant Politics Editor, that I despaired at the vitriol spilling from the comments on the politics site, infecting the rest of our esteemed BC and threatening its integrity, honor, and decency.
But in my too-long hiatus, from which I still have not yet fully returned, I've had the chance to check out other political sites, and I'm pleased to report that BC Be Alright.
On most other well-known political sites (I'd name them but then I'd have to link them and I'm too lazy… weak… infirm), the quality of political discussions ranges from "you betcha" to rants that would make those from our least savory members bundles of boodle.
On Politico.com, which is a site for polling junkies, fer Christ's sake, Mark Blumenthal recently suspended comments and kicked assholes off the site because the dialogue had reached swamp gas levels. (He has since relented.) On others, the comments range from "right on, third-world soul world brother" to "you ain't got no sense, you fuckin' liberal/conservative."
So I have to say that the political writers and commenters on BC should feel pretty good about the quality and substance of their discourse. The question now is — why isn't the site getting more notice?
First, one answer is, in a word, publicity. Without rampant self-promotion, it's going to be difficult to elevate the political site into the next realm.
Second, as one who lives on opinion because he finds facts so… pesky… we need more articles to balance out the opinion. It's not hard to do. Hell, all I use is My Yahoo and I get frequent updates — if I'd only check it more than once every two or three days. Opinion is nice, but breaking news is better in the sense that it gets us more notoriety on the aggregator sites, not to mention making Eric O. a happy camper in his new luxury suite at Technorati "We be the future".com.
Nonetheless, in defiance of one BC editor (I'd name him if I could only remember who he was) who once compared the politics page to a cage of angry weasels all tearing each other into Palin-sized pieces… well, maybe not his exact words… I say, pshaw. If you can't stand the heat, go back to your own realm.
So well done, BC Politics. It may be a slimy, ugly, opinion-filled mass of egomaniacs, but it's one of the best-informed and most intelligent masses of egomaniacs I've found.
And that's the truth.
Curmudgeon At Large
In Jameson Veritas