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November 04, 2007

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While you're at it, vote for xkcd as best comic strip, since it's good and since we certainly don't want the "Mallard Fillmore"-ish "Day by Day" to win.

If we hit #998 next year, free iPhones!

vote early and often

I mentioned this a few days ago. I should have mentioned more loudly.

If you really want to win, and are *truly* shameless, just write a really positive post about Ron Paul and link to the poll.

I voted for Ob-Wi (sounds like a Jedi name), Hilzoy... tough choice though with the great Echidne in that category as well!

Hey, you guys are in second place. Thanks for providing the forum. Give 'em a click.

While you're at it, vote for xkcd as best comic strip, since it's good and since we certainly don't want the "Mallard Fillmore"-ish "Day by Day" to win.

Ahg. I am totally devoted to Girl Genius. Gonna split the vote and let that hack strip win....

Voted for you guys already.

I'll pander here as well, Check out my wifes blog, she's up for "Best New Blog" and currently getting pummeled by a Little Green Footballs acolyte...

I'm not asking for blind support votes, go check her out, and then give her your vote if she earns it (then vote every day!).

Mrs. Furious ... Recipes, Rants, and Reviews

And in that much more important competition, I nominated Publius' The Book of Hinderaker for Best Blog Post Ever. I don't know if it deserves to take the crown; I just thought it was worthy of being part of the discussion, and getting some down-ballot votes.

Damn, I hadn't realized that "The Book of Hinderaker" was Publius. I wasn't reading him at the time, and I saw it only because others linked to it. That was a good one.

I think it may be safe for comic fans to vote 'Girl Genius' now. Day by Day is lagging xkcd by over a thousand votes, and denying DbD second place is a fine objective, if a smaller one.

You can vote for Balloon Juice as well.

Day by Day is lagging xkcd by over a thousand votes, and denying DbD second place is a fine objective, if a smaller one.

Jebus. Even in a silly web award event we have to have this stuff? Forget about who is actually funniest – the goal is to deny someone whose politics is different than you even a second place win? Not to root for someone on your ‘side’, but to push to deny someone on the other side the recognition.

I really don’t know why Kevin bothers…

OCSteve, when the whole reason for the popularity of a strip has nothing to do with its alleged humor but with its politics, then I'm not too concerned that some people may be motivated by politics in voting against it.

DbD is sooo unfunny. the drawing is OK (to my unrefined eye), but the words... nothing.

maybe it's all dog-whistle stuff and my feeble liberal mind can't pick-up on the secret conservative messages.

KCinDC: Right. Because a second place win in the prestigious Weblog Awards would lead straight to a national syndication deal. From that pulpit Chris could begin to subtly influence national opinion. The next thing you know people start voting Republican because they got a chuckle out of one of his strips.

I take the time to vote for ObWi every day – not because I agree with all the politics represented here by any means (whether it’s Charles or Hilzoy), but because I believe it is the best blog in the category. Heck it should be in the top 250 IMO.

Obviously humor is very subjective – but we aren’t talking about humor. We’re talking about denying a guy who works hard at his strip some very minor recognition because of his politics. You might not be aware that he lampoons Republicans on a regular basis, or that the religious zealots have some real problems with him because he exposes too much “cartoon skin”.

cleek: No problem there – not funny to you is not funny. I just object to the goal of knocking the guy out of even second place because of his politics.

OCSteve, I agree with cleek that "Day by Day" is not even funny. The "jokes" Chris Muir tries to make seem to be based on a stereotyped racist, sexist, classist, homophobic view of the world, and he's not witty enough to be able to tell them well enough to raise a laugh from anyone who doesn't share his views.

If he won, it would be like Redstate winning: evidence that conservatives can and will vote regularly and often for their own echo chambers. Not quality, but quantity.

Also, he can't draw.

OCSteve, I'm not sure what prestige has to do with what I said. My point is simply that I think there are more people voting for DbD than against it because of its politics rather than its humor. If voting against it for political reasons is objectionable, then voting for it for political reasons should be as well.

But the idea that political considerations are going to be absent from a contest sponsored by Wizbang is more than a bit unrealistic.

Again – humor is subjective. I certainly have no objection to someone rooting for the strip they think is funnier or encouraging others to vote for it.

My objection is to the explicitly stated goal of denying him second place as an objective in its own right. As in denying DbD second place is a fine objective.

You have no way to know that people who vote for it are doing so based on politics. But this thread has the evidence of people wanting to deny Chris even a second place win based on politics.

OCSteve: My objection is to the explicitly stated goal of denying him second place as an objective in its own right.

Why? He's really, really not funny. And his politics stink, too.

OTOH, if enough conservatives keep clicking, he might get second-place. You have no problem with him getting second place for political reasons?

Hey, if he were funny and witty, I'd have no problem.

He's not funny. And his craftsmanship is unimpressive, particularly when compared to other entries.

"Obviously humor is very subjective – but we aren’t talking about humor. We’re talking about denying a guy who works hard at his strip some very minor recognition because of his politics."

This is all wrong.

If people found the strip funny, but had some problem with the politics, you'd be right.

But we are talking about humor. I've never laughed at the strip once. I've never twitched a smile. I've never thought "that's funny."

I don't dislike Muir, or have any opinions about him, or know anything about him, other than that he's rightish, and perhaps dark complexioned. I think his drawing style is fine.

I've just never found him funny. This seems to be common among those who don't actively think, yeah, we should support him because of his anti-liberal politics!

I'm perfectly willing to grant that most conservatives don't find Garry Trudeau, or Al Franken, funny, as well.

"You might not be aware that he lampoons Republicans on a regular basis, or that the religious zealots have some real problems with him because he exposes too much 'cartoon skin'."

That would make him funny, why?

What's that got to do with being funny? People should vote for him because of his political views?

Actually, the idea that people should vote for him because of his shocking use of "cartoon skin" is pretty hilarious.

Whoa, cartoon skin! What filth!

If our children see too much cartoon skin, they'l be having sex with cartoons! And wind up with cartoon pregnancies, and cartoon STDs! Oh noes!

"You have no way to know that people who vote for it are doing so based on politics."

Various given individuals, sure. No way to know that most people link to the strip and support it because of politics? That's ridiculous. Muir's strip wouldn't exist, or have been adopted by right-wing blogs, if not for its politics.

There's nothing wrong with that, but I don't see how it's deniable.

"If he won, it would be like Redstate winning: evidence that conservatives can and will vote regularly and often for their own echo chambers."

That seems a little harsh. Doesn't any given site win because its readers are willing to vote multiple times for what they like?

"Echo chamber" seems a little harsh too, given threads like this one, in which there was a very lively debate about waterboarding. They also seem gracious enough in permitting a liberal like me to needle them about things.

One more time, the phrase I objected to is “denying DbD second place is a fine objective”. Now how is that about humor in any way? This really isn’t worth the bandwidth to argue about. Vote for who you like – or not. Vote against who you dislike for whatever reason – or not.


BTW – I had never even heard of the runaway “Best Blog” PostSecret before. Am I the only one a little creeped out by it?

dkilmer: Doesn't any given site win because its readers are willing to vote multiple times for what they like?

Yes. OTOH, Redstate,and Little Green Footballs, which I see is winning for "best online community" are both avowed echo chambers. Liberals and lefties are banned for expressing dissenting political opinions, and as I recall, the Redstate mods at least acknowledge this publicly. (If you're being allowed to comment there, things may have changed - but I wouldn't bet on it. Tell me again if you're still unbanned in six months...)

I've heard of PostSecret. One of the weird things about the contest is the way that for many of the categories the entries are about half political and half nonpolitical, which makes comparisons hard. Lots of us who read mainly political blogs don't think about how they're a small part of a larger blogosphere, where many readers don't follow politics at all.

Now how is that about humor in any way?

Making sure the funniest comic gets top place, and the second-funniest gets second place, and Chris Muir, who is not funny at all, does not get to second place.

"Vote for who you like – or not. Vote against who you dislike for whatever reason – or not."

Nah. I'm not nominated, so clearly these awards are petty, unimportant, fail to recognize true quality, and aren't worth voting in.

More seriously, there are so many blog awards, I pay no attention to any of them.

Though if I were actually nominated, I'd quickly realize just how meaningful that award was, and how perceptive and insightful its voters are.

Jes - I've been there a year. There is always going to be a mildly echo-chamberish feel to a community site that's politically aligned. It's a place where conservatives go to talk about conservative stuff -- they're going to tend to agree with each other on a lot of things. It's not that much different than here (aside from the fact that there's a lot less snark on the front page here).

I've seen people banned for shouting talking points, but I've never seen anyone banned for dissenting in a polite and reasonable manner. The moderators often use the analogy of a house -- if you walk in and pee on the living room floor, you will tend to be kicked out.

There are a lot of things I don't like about RedState. It's snarky and often petty. The commenters often ignore intelligent arguments and seem to prefer responding to the "low hanging fruit" of dumb arguments, which brings down the level of the debate. But if you want to understand how conservatives' minds work, it's a great place to go.

I recognize that the Redstate threads I've read are not a random sample, because they're usually ones that people have linked to because of outrage, but I've certainly seen people being "blammed" for simple dissent there.

Wasn't Hilzoy banned at Redstate? Was she "shouting talking points"?

dkilmer - what KCinDC said.

And as far as I'm concerned, any blog that bans Hilzoy is a blog definitively hostile to reasoned argument and principled disagreement.

But if you want to understand how conservatives' minds work, it's a great place to go.

so, a conservative's mind works something like this:

1. Libs are evil
2. X happens
3. See! I told you Libs were evil! [for all values of X]

I've been banned there; Edward & hilzoy too, I believe. (We would be the "bad crowd" that von should be excused from falling in with, I believe). That "lively debate" about waterboarding makes me fairly ill, but if anyone feels its worthwile to post there they might consider asking Moe et. al what they make of this">http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/11/05/1538212">this account.

Jes: any blog that bans Hilzoy is a blog definitively hostile to reasoned argument and principled disagreement

Well that I have to agree with. Unless of course she lost it and went on a true rant. Now that would be something to see so be sure to clue me in if it ever happens. ;)

Never tempt the Wrath of Hilzoy!

FWIW, OCSteve, if you (or Von, or ThirdGorchBro, or indeed Andrew) were banned from commenting on a left-wing/liberal blog, I would take that as good evidence that that blog was hostile to reasoned argument/principled disagreement. But I think it's fair to say that both RedState and LittleGreenFootballs are the largest/most popular blogs that purposefully ban people for expressing opinions contrary to the blog's politics - and I'm not aware of any left-wing blogs of equivalent magnitude that have such a reputation for banning for expressing contrary opinions.

Jes and KC - If people are banned for reasonable dissent, then I respectfully withdraw my comment. I consider "a place that bans reasonable dissent" to be a decent working definition of "echo chamber".

I didn't know about Hilzoy being banned, and I admit that it's hard to imagine her saying anything that would prompt such a thing.

IIRC, hilzoy was banned for no specific reason, being as she tried to log in one day and found at it had happened (i.e., there was no Moe Lane "assignment" or "you must apologize" warning or , indeed, even a "blamming" comment by one of the moderators). If I had to guess who did it my money would be on "Thomas" who found himself out of his league discussing religion with hilzoy one day and didn't like the experience.

cleek was banned due to Moe's lack of reading comprehension skills.

I was banned for having the temerity to point out that the US has not always been as pure as God (and because people over there are incapable of reading subject lines).

Ugh (both senses) - Wow. I didn't realize so many people from ObWi had that experience.

To be honest, I'm probably more inclined to be charitable about RedState because my brother works there. And maybe that's why they're inclined to be charitable with me.

Katherine - but wouldn't you agree that Von acquitted himself admirably? He was pretty much a one-man show.

I'm probably more inclined to be charitable about RedState because my brother works there. And maybe that's why they're inclined to be charitable with me.

I'm guessing that's 100% of why you're still around there, though you're pretty moderate with your comments there as well (from what I've seen of them), for likely the same reason.

Note that Thomas and (I think) Leon refer to ObWi as a "hate" site (for reasons that are still unclear to me).

dkilmer: I don't want to pick a fight with von, but no, not really.

I'm pretty sure people have been banned on Daily Kos for persistent opposition to the site's goal of electing more and better Democrats (or for being 9/11 conspiracy theorists). It's not that different from Redstate in that respect -- though I don't believe the DKos admins fantasize about shooting the people they ban.

Wow. I didn't realize so many people from ObWi had that experience.

i've been banned multiple times (under different names). i'm never rude or disruptive, but they know i'm not one of them, and so every disagreement, no matter how civil, turned into a reason to ban me. and finally they blocked my (work) IP addr so i can't even see their site.

i do have an active account over there, from a different IP addr, but i don't use it any more because there's really no point in trying to engage any of them in conversation. all they want to hear is the Party line.

remember, RS is a site whose posting rules, for a long time, explicitly said that the purpose of the site was to boost the Republican party and that any comments which didn't help that goal would be deleted. these days, the rule is no longer de jure, it's now de facto.

Also, IRIC under the banning policy the purpose of redstate was to promote conservative and Republican principles, but there was no guidance on what to do when the two diverged (e.g., posts that pointed out that Bush wasn't exactly the most conservative president in the world were met with stern warnings, if not bannings).

Since then it's just gone downhill to being a complete shill for the Republican party, conservative or not.

but if anyone feels its worthwile to post there they might consider asking Moe et. al what they make of this account.

The guy's French, what do you expect?

/Moe

I really wish someone would tell me why Thomas, Jeff Emanuel and others on that redstate thread have such a vested interest (indeed, almost pathological interset) in the "water-boarding is not torture" position.

it can't be torture because Bush says we don't torture, and Bush is an honorable man.

I voted for Ob-Wi because any blog where both Jesu and OCSteve (to pick just two examples) feel free to comment is obviously doing something right (that few, if any, other blogs do).

"it can't be torture because Bush says we don't torture, and Bush is an honorable man.

I can't read their minds, but I have a feeling it's a little more complicated than that.

Oh look, a whole nother' Bizarro World waterboarding thread.

Maybe I need to rethink this whole "RedState isn't so bad" idea....

a whole nother' Bizarro World waterboarding thread.

FF'sS. again with the SERE training!

are the 24%ers really so gas-huffing stupid that they don't understand that we wouldn't treat our own soldiers the way we'd treat The Enemy ? maybe we'd go a little farther with people we thought were going to kill us all than we would with someone in a training class ?

and waterboarding involves a plastic sheet over the face so no water actually goes into the subject's mouth? WTF?

ok, i guess that's what you can expect from the bottom 24% of the bell curve, but damn that's some stupid sh!t!

RE: the SERE training - I'm tempted to create a login to note that:

Some people voluntarily agree to be bound, gagged, and sodomized, but somehow mbecker908 I doubt that if strange men broke into your house and did that to you, you likely wouldn't be persuaded by cries of "it's not that bad! some people actually like it!" Or that, if done to captured US soldiers, this would be described as an "enhanced interrorgation technique"

Really the enthusiasm over there for waterboarding is frightening.

Ugh, it's the same as Limbaugh's "fraternity hijinks" explanation for why Abu Ghraib wasn't a big deal. Is it really that hard to understand the concept of consent?

Next they'll be justifying the guy who had a razor taken to his genitals by saying that surgeons do that sort of thing every day.

Ugh - mbecker doesn't have enough mirror neurons to process that.

KC - Charles Graner's lawyer argued at his trial (and I quote):

"don’t cheerleaders all over america form pyramids six to eight times a year? is that torture?"

Come on folks. ObWi is behind by only 69 votes. Get over there and vote!

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