Quick Roundup 469

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

2000th Post

As my blog approaches the five year mark in late October, it has already reached another milestone: This is my 2000th post.

I'll call that either a milestone or a millstone, depending on my mood when you ask me.

I have lately been reassessing how the blog will fit in to my writing career as part of taking full advantage of a more general decluttering opportunity that my recent move has afforded me. I think that blogging will fit in, but that I will need to cut down the amount of time I spend posting by about half, at least for the next year or so, to move towards my other non-blogging goals as a writer.

Whether I get there by making shorter posts or fewer posts is the big question...

Stay tuned. If I decide to make any drastic changes that I can't just smoothly transition into, I'll announce them.

Synergy: Pragmatism and Paternalism

I have never seen a better, more succinct example than the sentence below of the kind of unprincipled, expedient thinking that is transforming the United States from a land of freedom and opportunity to one of paternalism and stifling controls.

William Saletan of Slate writes about the wildfire-like spread of state controls on personal dietary choices:

If you're trying to sink health care reform, this is a good way to do it: Show everyone how subsidized health insurance will entitle other people to regulate your eating habits.
Saletan is right about one thing: These controls could well lead to a resounding defeat of medical insurance "reform" when people realize that they are direct consequences of same. Unfortunately, he is dead wrong about another: Refusing -- or blowing a chance to get his readers -- to step back and ask whether a government program that will, by its nature, lead to such things is really worth supporting in the first place. As a semi-conservative, he may be trying to provoke such a reaction, but he sounds too much like he's offering Obama unsolicited PR advice for my tastes.

You have to either reject the premise that you are entitled to use government loot to fulfill your needs or you have to acknowledge that you don't have a leg to stand on when some bureaucrat deems one of your favorite activities a waste of state money. You can't have it both ways. (A pragmatist will try to, anyway, but a rejection of principles on principle cannot magically cause you to escape the consequences of ignoring objective principles.)


In the process of trying to find a web site for my favorite shopping center, I accidentally found a blog post about a half-interesting, half-amusing article on the "culture clash" that ensues when self-annointed urban elites step out of their cultural bubble long enough to shop there with the rest of us. (One note about the title: The proper adjective is, "snooty," not "snotty." Good. Got that one out of my system!)

I love the convenience this place offers: I can usually get away with not having to rent a car to do my shopping. Perhaps it's because I lived for so long in Houston before moving here, but nothing struck me as terribly remarkable about the demographic makeup of its clientele.

Interesting Site

I can't say that I agree with even most of what I found here, but Self-Promotion for Introverts strikes me as thought-provoking enough for at least another couple of visits.

-- CAV


Paul Hsieh said...

Congratulations on reaching 2000 posts, and I'm looking forward to the next 2000!

Gus Van Horn said...

Thanks! They may be slower coming out, but I do look forward to writing them.