Saturday, March 07, 2009

Brad's Comments

Josh Wright and Steve Horowitz (and commentators) are bent out of shape with Brad DeLong for deleting (or editing) comments. I suspect they've got a point; I've been deleted a few times over the years. Couple of times I figured it was a judgment call, and Brad was probably right. Couple of times, it seemed to me more like outright thought control but I figured it was his blog and not a big deal.

But Josh and Steve and I are not the only ones I've heard make this point. And just in general--well, put it this way: DeLong's is a great blog. it almost always in the top ten in my aggregator Trendline (right now it is third place in number, first in content). Unfailingly interesting, challenging and thought-provoking.

But let's face it, Brad is a rigid guy. His ferocious attacks on those with whom he disagrees are legend. But also self-defeating. I mean, discretion, baby! It is one thing to expose the bankrupt pretentions of the Washington Post Ombudsperson. And beating up on George Will is always the Lord's work. But to come out with guns blazing against every ink-stained mediocrity who has a bad day--after a while, it takes on the unmistakable aroma of the Boy Who Cried Wolf.

So, Brad, baby! This is an intervention! This is a friend speaking! Lighten up! You've got a perfect right (perhaps an obligation) to delete the vicious, the vulgar and the hollow. But interesting people who disagree with you: look, just stop it! You'll enhance your street cred and make an already-riveting weblog even more indispensable than it already is.


brad said...

I got three choices with the comments: shut 'em down; let 'em degenerate into a total useless swamp like so many on the internet; or try to moderate 'em without enough time to do so.

And when Austrian economists sic their own zombie legions onto my comments section, it gets rough...

What would you suggest I do?

Anonymous said...

First, your blog is great. I read it almost daily.

Second, I used to read Delong's blog too until he deleted my innocuous comments. It got me thinking about his rigidity and how he failed to see this crisis brewing. He's smart but stuck in his own outdated paradigm. Too bad.