I'm von, I'm the third poster on the site, and I'm currently consumed by the following question:
What the hell has going on at Daily Kos?
I used to read Daily Kos. He was an insightful commentator on the Iraq war, and it didn't hurt that his politics and mine have certain similarities. But what most impressed me was that his commentators ran the gamut from liberal to conservative, and the resulting debates on his comment boards were sometimes excellent.
Of late, however, Daily Kos has become yet another organ of the Democratic Party. It is now a place where the like-minded gather to chat about like-minded things, or to analyze exactly how stupid the unlike-minded are. Consequently, the unlike-minded seldom go there, and the quality of debate has declined. There's also been an unfortunate political "cleansing" of the blogroll (goodbye, Tacitus).
There's nothing wrong with this, of course. It's Kos's blog, and he can do with it what he wants. Most of his posts are still quite good (this bit of holier-than-thou-ism notwithstanding), and his guest posters can be excellent (Meteor Blades in particular). But I do lament the loss of something special in DKos. It used to contain that rarest of blogosphere attributes: actual, honest, fair-sided debate among all members of the political spectrum. No longer.
I mean not to launch a blog war here.* I write to encourage DKos and other bloggers to do their best to keep their comment boards open to all reasonable people who are willing to reasonably discuss the issues of the day. Particularly with the presidential campaigns heating up, it's good to remember that these are interesting times, and they require interesting debate.
Blogs are our coffee houses, people. Let's keep them open.
*But, if you are inclined to respond with tae kwan LGF, please direct it at me (von) and not the other posters.