For North: Sullivan Calls it Quits

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31 Responses

  1. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    He’ll be back after he spend a few months tracking down Trig’s real mother.Report

  2. Avatar greginak says:

    Sulli was often interesting and thoughtful. Also occasional histrionic and obsessive. He almost made me sympathize with Queen Sarah due to his treatment of her. He was also terrible in the run up to Iraq 2 but he at least had the guts to admit he was wrong. But he was a pioneer so he gets some credit for that. He also would not have survived covering Clinton’s campaign as a daily blogger. Nutzoid wouldn’t even begin to describe his likely reactions to the Clintons in 2016.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw in reply to greginak says:

      Occasional historonic? He was more melodramatic than a Visconti movieReport

      • Avatar greginak in reply to Saul Degraw says:

        Don’t bring Visconti into this. That is unnecessary and unfair. The comparison is inapt in a number ways. Wait….who is Visconti?? Does he make Biscotti? I like that. I’d probably even like melodramatic biscotti.Report

    • Avatar North in reply to greginak says:

      I think he was only nutzoid in 2008 because he had a candidate he really really liked (and as a Clintonista myself believe me I rolled my eyes hard at his Clinton hysteria). If his choice in 2016 was a Clinton, a standard (modern) republican or a left winger he’d have probably just been grumpy.Report

  3. Avatar Chris says:

    He used to link to my old blog fairly often, which meant money since I got paid by the unique visitor. So I am grateful to him for that. I never read him much, though, and haven’t at all in years, so I suppose I won’t miss him.

    Why him before Glenn Reynolds, though?Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Chris says:

      Glenn Reynolds gets the overwhelming majority of his links from his audience. Send him an email with a title explaining why a link is worth looking at, he’ll look at it if it resonates or he thinks it’ll resonate with the rest of his audience. He writes two or three sentences per link and, maybe, includes a decent sized excerpt.

      He’s an aggregator more than a blogger and he has everybody out here doing his sifting on his behalf. He’s just the final pair of eyes before linking to the links we send him.

      (Which, let me point out, shouldn’t be seen as a criticism. It’s just the way it is.)

      Sullivan wrote from the heart every few hours, it seems. You can only do that for so long before running out of gas. (He’s also got health problems that make you run out of gas earlier than you would otherwise.)

      To be honest, Sully is a brand at this point. He could blog one month a year and just have interns that understand his cadence and rhythm fill in the rest of the time. A permanent vacation and he could still pull in 2 bucks a month from… oh, two thirds of 30,000 people.

      Hell, I could see one of our graduates spending a month or two there.Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Jaybird says:

        Atrios does even less work than that. It amazes me he still has a blog at all.Report

      • Avatar Glyph in reply to Jaybird says:

        Can I complain a bit about Reynolds here?

        Reynolds was one of the breadcrumbs that led me here, IIRC (the trail probably went something like Instapundit – TAS or Culture 11 – LoOG).

        When Bush was in office, Reynolds would sometimes critically link to some of the loonier left-fringe conspiracy stuff, where there were theories about Bush suspending elections and sending black helicopters to round up Americans into camps, and he would correctly note that some people were just getting crazy over the man (“Bush Derangement Syndrome”, he called it).

        When Obama then ran/got elected, and all sorts of crazy conspiracy stuff was coming from the right (the birth certificates stuff, not to mention basically the same black helicopter-FEMA camp nonsense but now going the other direction), Reynolds would link to THAT stuff completely uncritically without comment, instead of (in my mind) noting/criticizing it as ODS.

        It just seemed so partisan and hacky that I was disgusted, I dropped him and never went back – and he’d been a daily check-in for me for a long time, as there often were interesting links.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Jaybird says:

        I mention Instapundit with Sullivan because, for us anti-war types, there was a time when they were both arch enemies, so in my mind they will always be linked. This is probably unfair, but in 2002/2003, they were prominent conservative bloggers cheerleading for the war and being absolutely awful to the anti-war left.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Jaybird says:

        That reminds me, you know who else was awful to the anti-war left? War cheerleading liberals like Jonathan Chait. “Leftier than thou” was a common way to dismiss the anti-war left then, too.Report

      • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

        True, but if being wrong about something disqualifies one for all eternity then the further Left’s been konked out of the running over communism and economics since the late early 1990’s. At least Chait and Sullivan admitted they were wrong (Sullivan repeatedly and profusely).Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Jaybird says:

        Yeah, and Sullivan’s mea culpa’s weren’t as snide as Chait’s, which, if I remember correctly, basically still shat on the left.

        But Sullivan and Reynolds will always be linked in my brain from that time.Report

      • Avatar North in reply to Jaybird says:

        They weren’t snide at all, they weren’t grovelling but they were horrified and extremely harsh on himself. Then, when the Dish launched independent he put up a long item where he basically reposed -everything- he wrote during his ra-rah war days up to and including his discovery of the torture and turning on the cause. It was titled “I was Wrong” as I recall.

        Chait, of course, was snide. Chait’s snide about everything except Michigan football.Report

  4. Avatar Tod Kelly says:

    “he… made sites like OT possible.”

    And more than that, he’s indirectly responsible for much of OT’s actual success. A whole lot of readers and contributors over the years came via Sully.Report

  5. Avatar Will Truman says:

    If it hasn’t been for Sullivan and Reynolds, I probably wouldn’t have started blogging. Had I never started blogging, I never would have met my wife.

    So thanks Andrew and Glenn!Report

  6. Avatar Brandon Berg says:

    made sites like OT possible.

    Well, not really. Blogging was pretty much an inevitability. Just because he was one of the first doesn’t mean his actions were a necessary precondition for everything that followed.

    Not to knock him. I’ve never really even read him. Just saying that precursor and precondition are very different things.Report

  7. Avatar North says:

    I’m suffering a lot of withdrawal right now. The Dish was a really good central clearing house for events. Sullivan would have his own spin on it but he aggregated some really good stuff so you could get a regular feel for what was going on right now, in the midterm and in the big picture. It just made it so easy.

    I’m running all sorts of gamut’s myself right now.

    Paranoia: is this a way of gracefully bowing out? Maybe the subscriber foundation he was operating on was simply insufficient and he knew that long term the project would fizzle so rather than ride it out to the last whimper he’d retire? Maybe Sarah Palin had incriminating pictures of him with Mitt Romney and is forcing him out of blogging?

    Skepticism/hope: Maybe this is just a bump and he’ll resume

    Sorrow: I really liked his emotional freak-outs and his analysis. I didn’t agree with him a ton but we were kindof sympatico, perhaps about 60% of the time. So I am gonna miss his voice.

    Confusion: Where the fish am I going to get a similar quality of aggregation? I don’t want to bloody well do it myself!

    Bargaining: Can he hire someone else to mainline the Dish and keep his dishterns employed? I don’t know, maybe they wouldn’t pull in enough subscriptions to pull it off…

    Regret: Maybe if I’d bought a mug or something. I don’t really love beagles though.

    Gratitude: Quibble or not Sullivan is like the Grandpa of Same sex marriage. I’m gay married so he’s kind of like a Godfather for that.

    Baffleitude: Where the fish am I gonna waste a lunch hour or so every day on the net?Report

  8. Avatar zic says:

    I bet he calls the calling it quits off. He’s got a great staff that do what he did when he’s not around, it gives him a powerful platform to speak if, occasionally, he wants to speak, and he just posted about how many subscribers have been asking for just that, and saying they’re considering.

    If his model’s going to work, perhaps having it work without him as the brand is a better test. Just sayin’

    I’d be happy to have he kind of blogging we get continue; I don’t necessarily think Sully has to do it. It’s been pretty obvious for a while that his team was doing a lot of heavy lifting, though that’s not to dismiss or diminish Sully in any way. If the Dish keeps on, they get a chance to get more credit for that heavy lifting, a chance to develop their own voices and POV on all things blogable.Report

    • Avatar North in reply to zic says:

      I second that, his statement that he was considering letting the Dish try and go at it without his direct daily operation gave me hope. I really value it beyond just his voice. It’s like a linky Friday every day. Well worth the subscription price. I’d pay for it.Report

  9. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    Thinking about it, I realize that this doesn’t hit me nearly as hard as when hilzoy stopped blogging. There are still good folks over at Obsidian Wings, and I look in on them occasionally, but it stopped being a daily read the day she left.Report