Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Mixed Colostomy Bag Wednesday 3: Enter the Slogger

Dr. Bill Vallicella, my ontotheological sparring partner, has taken the plunge and started up a blog separate from his main website. The blog is Maverick Philosopher, and I highly recommend it. He started the blog up earlier this month, and the look is getting sleeker by the day.

A note for those of you who're convinced I view Vallicella as the enemy: he's nothing of the sort. I have deep disagreements with his stance, but often lack the rhetorical means to express my disagreements the way I want. I view my exchanges with Dr. V as beneficial because they show me the holes in my reasoning, prompt me to reach a little bit further into my own thinking, and force me to a higher rhetorical standard. It's the free lesson in Western philo I've been wanting, and if it comes with a few bruises, all the better. We thick-browed, knuckle-dragging hominids can take quite a bit of pain; the net result is evolution-- if not of the species, then at least of my own consciousness.

Check out Dr. V's rant on the use of the words "stuff" and "ass." Also, enjoy his flaying of a rather uncivil colleague (i.e., a fellow philosopher) here.

Dr. V uses the term "slogger" to describe those who blog at a leisurely pace. I'll be curious to see whether he can maintain such a leisurely pace in the hectic blogosphere, but Dr. V already wrote me that he's wondering whether others can maintain such a hectic pace without burnout. He may be on to something: Glenn Reynolds himself recently complained of health problems associated with blogging (see here), and most bloggers drop out of the game within a year or so once they realize they can't make the requisite commitment to blogging (that's not meant as a dig against the dropouts, mind you; I count some good friends among those who've realized they'd rather live life away from the keyboard).

One meta-blogging note: I'm glad to see more philosophers in the blogosphere. While I don't believe the myth that cyberspace "radically democratizes" everything (if it did, there'd be no blogospheric hierarchies of prestige, traffic, etc.), cyberspace does make every site almost equally available everywhere-- unless, of course, you're in fucking China or North Korea. Philosophers who mix it up with the hoi polloi online have the greatest chance of disseminating their ideas to the masses, and can provide an example of thoughtful, literate discourse. Then again, philosophers come in all shapes and sizes. If Dr. V's recent critic is any indication, the field of philosophy isn't immune to assholery.

We in the religion business have known this for years re: religion. Nice to know it applies across the board.


No comments: