Stepping off the Right Path
People have probably already guessed at this point, but in case they hadn’t (and to make it all official-like) I thought I should probably say out loud I won’t be doing any more Right Path posts for the foreseeable future. Basically, I’m not sure I see a need at this point.
Most of what I write is, as I so often say, me thinking out loud. Two and a half years ago, when I started this journey with y’all, I said this:
More often than not you should assume that I am in no way an expert on any given subject. (I’ll try to note if I have special knowledge of a topic, otherwise assume I’m just this guy.) I know that many people that blog on political/social-issue sites do so because they know in their heart of hearts they have the answers; I am here primarily because I am so very aware that I don’t.
Thinking out loud is a kind of freedom. Thinking out loud means I don’t have the responsibility of a DougJ, a Jonah Goldberg, a Charles Johnson, or a Michelle Malkin to never back down on any point, because unless I’m talking about a few specific subjects (risk management and insurance, usually) I’m pretty aware that I don’t know more than my readers. Sometimes talking out loud helps me grow, but sometimes it means that I’m wrong. Sometimes it means I’m really wrong. Sometimes it means I’m so wrong that I embarrass myself. But I don’t really want to write about only insurance and risk management and I’m anxious to have the hive mind help me grow, so thinking out loud is what I do here.
When I started the Right Path series, it was because I was concerned that the left was going down the same path I saw the right start down twenty years ago. Back then, in the 1990s, it was hard for me to articulate exactly why what the right was doing so unnerved me. It turned out I was having an equally difficult time articulating to myself why I was having similar feelings now with the left. So when I talked out loud on these pages, I took care to couch everything in terms like “might,” “could,” “it feels like,” and “I could well be wrong.”
To say that I was surprised at the reaction in the threads — both here and in the contributor email chains — is an understatement. I was expecting pushback, but I have to say I wasn’t expecting the vehemence and vitriol. BSDI-er, liar, hippie puncher, full of s**t, David Brooks wanna-be, sell out. I think the readers here as being the best of the best on the Intertubes, and I would happily and proudly put you folks up against any other site’s commenters. So I found it unsettling that there was such a clear consensus among the site’s left that I was so out of bounds for even asking the question.
So like I said up top, I don’t really see the need to continue. You guys clearly don’t want me to write about it, and — at the risk of channeling Russell’s Millicent — if I’m a BSDI-er, liar, hippie puncher, full of s**t, David Brooks wanna-be, and sell out for simply saying I’m concerned something might be happening, then I don’t really feel the need to try and find a way to articulate for myself why I feel this way anymore.
I’ll still do my piece on adults with developmentally disabilities, because I think it’s an important story no one is covering. But I won’t in any way attach it to the Right Path series, because I don’t want to drag those adults and their real and ignored issues into our disagreement. Better their plight stand on its own.
Also, because I think this doesn’t really need any discussion (again, it’s just I feel), I’m pulling a Conor and letting this explanation stand without comments. We’ll talk about other stuff elsewhere.
Oh, and make no mistake — my inner Millicent aside, I love you guys like ice cream.
UPDATE: Russell told me to get my own inner-spinster and stop poaching Millicent. So I will also let this post act as an opportunity to introduce you to Edna. She’s hoping you’ll turn that racket you call music down.