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Jay Currie

One Damn Thing After Another

10/21/2004

Knuckle draging update

The nose breathing is going OK. It really is kinda cool once you get used to it. My friends Martine and Thomas brought me a bottle of Calvados back from France. (Don't tell anyone but, er, they're French. Being good bigots Susan and I fed them dinner.) The struggle to walk upright was aided by the good witch Glenda's chance remark over at Don's,
Why would he send all that traffic to Jay who can not only write him under the table, but has a sharper political mind.
glenda eden
And here's the thing: blogging is about those comments. About the respect of your peers. The reality check in blogging is very quick. Post rubbish and there will be someone out there who will call you on it. Post something interesting and people will link it.

That respect can't be bought or spun. It's earned. (OK, link whoring helps...but my point stands.) Kinsella doesn't get that because he's a creature of the industrial age media. Distributed, self organizing, commentary baffles him. After all, it is rather difficult to take a select few members of the blogosphere out for a drink and a quiet word. Kinsella's wee email slime on Gormery was the internet equivilent of the semi-discrete leak which has been powering the Ottawa media/political nexus.

We just witnessed the full on power of blogs in the US in the Rather affair. Without a speck of direction the swarm overwhelmed an industrial age network. Bill Paley saw broadcasting as inviolate. Top down. The Reith model which propelled the BBC.

Problem with that top down model is that there are a lot of people who are as smart or, heaven forbid, smarter, than the average journalist or special assistant and who owe nothing to anyone. They calls 'em as they see's em and they can't be spun.

One or two would be voices in the wilderness, twenty is an issue management issue; but a couple of hundred, much less a couple of thousand, is a fundamental change in the terms of trade between politicians and the media.

In our PJs, in our pitch dark home offices - when the media are having a few cocktails with people who they know will lie to them - bloggers Google for facts, look up IPs and retain their integrity.

The patron saint of bloggers was a guy named I.F. Stone. Here's what Ralph Nader wrote about Stone:
His name was I.F. Stone and his was the power of example for two generations of journalists. As a 14-year-old in the year 1921, he could wait no longer and started his own publication. At college he could not wait to graduate and went into daily journalism. When newspaper after newspaper failed his standards of accuracy, truth and importance, he started with his wife, Esther, the famous I.F. Stone Weekly in 1953 right out of his kitchen. Stone's inspiration for the weekly came in part from the newsletter In Fact, which George Seldes, the muckraking reporter, began in the forties. The Stones visited the Seldes family and spent several days learning the ways and means of surviving with one's own newsletter. Stone did more than survive. By the time he closed the weekly in 1968, due to failing health, he had a circulation of 70,000 worldwide. Albert Einstein was a subscriber; his $5 check was not cashed, but it was framed....

While others in his profession cowered, he stood tall to challenge the abusers of power no matter where they came from--right, middle or left. He did not have favorite perpetrators to let off. He was only concerned with the victims that the bullies pushed around or the dictators oppressed. He never allowed past acquaintances with influential power brokers to dictate any self-censorship.
multinational monitor
Kinsella would do well to realize blogger's are Stone's heirs.