It’s been another crazy week, but the rhythms of the school year are beginning to fall into their familiar patterns. That said, I’ve put in more hours working this week than any in a long time.
Regular readers know what that means: another edition of Phone it in Friday, now reaching its fifteenth installment.
It’s been a week for shout-outs to other commentators and platforms, so I figured I’d continue with that theme and recommend some of my blogger buddies to you. I have to give a big hat tip for this idea to one of my best blogger buddies, photog, over at Orion’s Cold Fire. He wrote a post—“A Word of Thanks to Our Boosters“—highlighting some of those blogs that routinely link to his page or reference his writing, and yours portly made the list. Thanks, photog!
So on this rainy, overcast Friday, here are some excellent blogs for your consideration:
I’ve been blogging daily for over a year-and-a-half now, with a smattering of posts going back to 2009 (on the old Blogger version of the site, which I call TPP 1.0). While I think I have some decent posts—my buddy fridrix of Corporate History International once told me my material was in the top ten percent in terms of quality on the Internet—I’ve written a lot of garbage, too, including placeholder posts for times I can’t really get something fresh posted.
Of course, I’ve written essays that I think are excellent—or, at the very least, very important—that get virtually no hits. Then I’ll write throwaway posts, like “Tom Steyer’s Belt,” that blow up the view counter. That one at least made sense—I was one of the first sources to write about his goofy belt, and his ads were so ubiquitous in late 2019, people searching for his belt got my blog.
What’s interesting to me is that I forget some of the things I’ve written. It’s another reason we shouldn’t be so fast to crucify television personalities who posted something incendiary on their blog fifteen years ago. Views change, although I think sometimes folks in the hot seat exaggerate how much they’ve “evolved” on an issue. Then again, we’re responsible for what we put out there.
That’s all a long way of saying that I’m doing some deep dives for an indeterminate number of Sundays into some forgotten posts. These are posts that don’t immediately spring to my mind when I’m referencing my own work. These posts may or may not have had high or low hit counts; they are just posts that don’t linger strongly in my memory. They’re the red-headed stepchildren of my churning mind.
To find these posts, I just looked back at months in 2018 and 2019 to see what didn’t leap out to me as familiar. You’ll notice that February 2019 is heavily-represented here, as that was early in the process of what became my goal of one year of daily posts.
With that, here are some forgotten posts of yesteryear:
“Twilight Zone Reviews on Orion’s Cold Fire” – My blogger buddy photog undertook a project in 2019 to watch and review everyTwilight Zone episode. He’d obtained the full box set, I believe, and set about his task, initially with daily reviews, which he then scaled back to a few times a week. He’s now writing reviews of Shakespeare in Film, which I will confess I have not followed as closely, but is in the same spirit as his TWZ project.
“The Good Populism” – This post was one in which I mused about running the first iteration of History of Conservative Thought. The essay explores a post from classicist Victor Davis Hanson entitled “The Good Populism.” I enthused at the time about how I would “definitely include” this essay in the course. Oops! The best-laid plans of mice and men oft go astray, eh? But it is a great essay, as VDH delivers keen analysis once again. In an age in which populism has newfound purchase on the American political imagination, it’s worth understanding that not all populism is the wicked machinations of demagogues swaying the rubes.
“More Good News: Tom Rice on the State of the Economy” – I completely forgot about this short post, which features a YouTube video of my US Represenative, Tom Rice, discussing the good economy. That was in The Before Times, in the Long Long Ago, before The Age of The Virus, when things just kept getting better and better. Just can the headlines at Zero Hedge and you’ll see pretty quickly that we’re headed for multiple financial cliffs if we don’t cease with all this shutdown nonsense. Yikes!
Well, that’s it for this Sunday. I’m looking forward into further deep dives over the coming weeks.
At the time, I was enjoying—as I am presently—the glory of Christmas Break. The blog had largely been dormant following a blitz of posting during the Summer of 2018, with only occasional posts here and there, such as transcriptions of my various “Historical Moments” mini-talks. Over the Christmas season, I was trying to get back into writing. I wasn’t in the custom of churning out 600+ words on a daily basis, so it took a bit more effort to sit down and write a post.
I never intended to keep a 365-day streak going. At first, I didn’t even realize WordPress tracked such activity. But I noticed (probably with this moderately popular post) that I had a three-day “steak,” as WordPress calls it.
So I decided to try to write something everyday for the month of January 2019. January tends to be a slow month in the school year, with everyone groggily easing back into intellectual activity during the grayest month of the year. I also find the cold intellectually stimulating—the bracing bite of mid-winter always seems to get the creative juices flowing.
Electric cars are fine, although environuts shouldn’t delude themselves that driving these battery-powered vehicles are saving the environment (it’s pedantic to point out, but batteries require a great deal of mining to get the metals necessary to build them, and the electricity to charge them comes from coal-, oil-, and nuclear-power, so it’s not like you’re truly making an end-run around fossil fuels). But a Ford Mustang shouldn’t be an electric car; at least, it shouldn’t be one that looks like this iteration.
In the spirit of these intrepid citizen journalists and commentators—and the cheeky fun and intellectual grit of their blogs—I thought I should pay homage to the posts that, when I’m struggling with writer’s block, helped me slap together some daily content.
I’ll be presenting these posts in chronological order in which I initially reblogged them, so if you don’t show up these week, Internet Friends, don’t worry; you’ll make it up here eventually!
“Reblog: The Falling Down Revolt” – This post examined photog’s “The Falling Down Revolt” essay, one of the most trenchant pieces I’ve read this year. The issue that photog address is what dissident blogger Z-Man calls “anarcho-tyranny“; that is, the state in which all manner of violent and property crimes occur unmolested, but law-abiding citizens get the shaft. The tiniest infraction gets convicted if you’re the average American citizen, but if you’re an illegal immigrant or a welfare-moocher of a certain background, you skate. Police are ineffective at catching the real bad guys, so they ding you for rolling through a stop sign with no traffic on the road, or the government comes after you because you’re eight bucks short on your taxes.
That situation leads to frustration among society’s straight-man. Why do rule followers get the brunt of the state’s terrible force, but criminals blatantly break the rules, and get off scot-free? It’s a recipe for an awakening.
“Reblog: Of Grills and Men” – One of the most important bloggers in both the manosphere and the traditional Christian Right today is Dalrock. I featured Dalrock on one of my lists of excellent dissident writers. The occasion for this post was the infamous Gillette ad in which men were portrayed as toxic abusers and advocates of kid-on-kid violence. Yeesh! Get woke, go broke, as they say.
That’s it for this week. Enjoy the waning hours of your glorious weekend!