RSS debate

Well, now. Do you think that Dave is talking about the recent RSS posts from myself, Jonathon Delacour, and Jon Udell when he writes the following under the title of Meta-Blogging:

Aggregation: Is goodness. Think of it as a way of upping the bandwidth of people whose minds are sponges and want to learn as much as possible. In time of crisis think of it as the Web’s Emergency Broadcast System.

I won’t get into issues of quantity versus quality, and indiscriminate sucking up of data regardless of worth, but Emergency Broadcast System?

In my area there’s a horn that goes off every Tuesday at noon that’s a test of the emergency notification system in my area. So tell me, Dave — are you saying that aggregation is equivalent to a loud raucous noise that drives all intelligent thought from your mind so that you’ll react instinctively.

NOISE! Argghhh! Click the next link!

NOISE! Argghhh! Click the next link!

As we saw with the events of September 11th, there were few weblogs that weren’t focused on what was happening in the Eastern part of the US. In times of crises the very act of aggregation negates the usefulness of aggregation because all links lead to one event, one act.

As a compliment I will say that in a crises, I first turn to Scripting News for information because I know that most webloggers will point out new and breaking information directly to Dave and he’ll pass the information along. Aggregation, yes. But intelligent aggregation.

And whatever happened to the art of debate.


Anger is good

Anger is good.

No, scratch that. Anger is good, healthy, natural, and, at times, even a salvation.

I’m not talking about the type of anger that makes you postal, has you clutch your heart and keel over, or that fills you with so much rage that you spit. I’m talking about the type of anger that fills you with purpose, gives focus to the undefined, and that empowers you.

Anger can find you in the center of darkness more quickly at times then the kindest words.

Sharon reads an essay by a “…impertinent little fucknozzle”, and exclaims with passion, “Shithead picked the wrong day to piss in my cornflakes.” I followed Sharon’s advice and sent an email comment about the essay, telling the publication that the author was “An impertinent little fucknozzle”. Let them work out the insult — I’m rallying to the cry of my friend who is angry!

Anger. It’s one of the seven deadly sins (along with sloth, lust, pride, greed, envy, and gluttony). Considered a sin, yet without anger humanity is nothing more than spiritless acquiescence. It fires the imagination as much as it fires our brains and hearts. Consider Shakespeare’s Othello:

Thou hadst been better have been born a dog
Than answer my waked wrath!

The anger that empowers one against injustice, hypocrisy, and ignorance can be no sin. Martin Luther King spoke of love and brotherhood, but it was anger that fueled the roots of the Civil Rights movement. It was anger that united a country against a war in Viet Nam.

And it was anger that pulled us out of despair after the events of September 11th, 2001.

However, as much as a healthy anger wakens us to purpose, an unhealthy anger pulls us into an obsession that can blind us to everything but the need to exterminate the target of our anger, regardless of the cost. In “Moby Dick”, it was obsessive anger that drove Ahab:

Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.

Obsessive anger. Six months after an act of savagery that angered a world, I hope that in the midst of taking a moment to remember those who died from these acts that we also remember that meeting acts of obsessive anger with more acts of obsessive anger is not a fitting tribute, to anyone.


Hunting the Happy Tutor

I really needed a light diversion today….

It started with the stark words of Farewell at the former happy home of Happy Tutor.

Then, odd little entries began appearing in

“Hunting the Happy Tutor”

All leading to a new weblog site at, under the control of a Captain Blowtorch. And within this new weblog are postings about the destruction of Wealth Bondage and the burning of the company headquarters, as well as the hunt for Happy Tutor and his aid.

Finally, tonight, we read that the previous members of the Wealth Bondage/Happy Tutor blogroll will soon be contacted — for what nefarious reason we shudder to think.

On hearing this, a member of said blogroll was heard to say:

My name is on that Blogroll. Should I trust that Captain Blowtorch will be lenient (since I was a recent addition)? Or should I pray instead that the Tutor and his assistant, Mr Dick Minim, will prevail and that I will be allowed to return to my role as an unassuming youth seeking instruction with humility, by which means I may hope to gain good fortune.

Hmmmm. Unassuming youth. Unassuming youth?

Unassuming. Youth. And humility?

Me thinks we’re too late — the hapless blogrolled person has been taken over by a pod person.


Mike Golby has written an important essay today in response to one that Meryl wrote earlier.

Brilliant writing and a very difficult subject.

Update Posting wasn’t pulled, it was a blogger problem. I’ve been having the same problems myself lately. Gladly, the link’s been restored.


A bright moment for today — Allan Moult is back online with G’Day Cobbers again!

Stop by. Say hi. Bring him a pie and tell him that you missed him.

Welcome back, Allan!

(Thanks to Steve for spotting Allan’s return.)