Crozier on blogging

Patrick Crozier of Croziervision makes a thoughtful post on how blogging has the power to change the political dialogue of today's society. Even though I daily watch CNN, Fox, MSNBC, etc., months can go by without hearing the word "libertarian" ever being spoken on TV. The first time I ever heard a thoughtful defense of basic libertarian philosophy was on an internet message board. Patrick questions whether blogging is effective in getting ideas across:

But blogging does not seem to be so good at converting people. ?I have met many people who have become libertarians through reading a book but none through reading a blog?? is a favourite line of a blogo-sceptic friend of mine.

I'm not so sure I agree with that. The blogosphere has a very libertarian streak to it. I'm constantly amazed at just how many eloquent libertarian bloggers there are out there. Certainly for me, blogs have served to shape my own opinion on various topics, not limited to the War on Terror. There are a large number of people who literally have never heard of libertarianism because their mindsets have been shaped by the 'both' sides model of Hannity and Colmes. They represent an opportunity, and blogs can serve as the means. Patrick goes on to highlight the importance of the tone used in spreading ideas:

But even so I can see the point. Too many blog postings are preaching to the converted. Too many poke fun at our opponents without ever really getting to grips with what they are actually saying. There is a hell of a difference between writing for the unconverted as opposed to writing for the converted. You have to suspend your prejudices and temporarily adopt the prejudices of your imaginary unconverted but open-minded reader. And then demolish them. Bit by bit. One by one. At all times being fair and objective. In other words, it?s harder.

Yes, it is much harder to immerse yourself in the other person's meta-context and make convinvcing arguments to lead them to your own meta-context. Since this is one goal of this blog, I hope we Catallarchists remember that constant mockery and vilification are not an effective strategy to spread ideas.

Patrick goes on to describe how Movable Type and perhaps future improvements in web-publishing tools and organization might help the better writing stay in the public eye longer.

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Hear, hear! Well said. I'd

Hear, hear! Well said. I'd like to add a special plea to avoid over-generalizations, e.g. saying "the Left believes" something when only a certain segment of them believe that. I see a lot of otherwise fair-minded bloggers doing that. Also, I think it's a good idea to give your opponents credit for good intentions unless you have proof otherwise.