It’s actually 1515 but who’s counting? This began mostly just for me to say things away from anyone else so that I at least would have a record. And as a way to discuss things with my son (Hi, Joshi). It’s now a bit beyond that, and there are others who I am pleased to see wander by. But every so often, I am linked to by someone at the heavy-duty end of right-side blogging and the number of hits explodes. It is astonishing on those days, but even then I am reminded of two things. How little influence most of us have, but more importantly, how little influence any of us have. We are, almost entirely, just talking amongst ourselves. But that is why each of us do it. We are so clearly right about most of the issues that matter, that you need the company of others like ourselves just to keep from going mad.
But the other side of this blog no longer being just between myself and a few friends is that there are some things I regrettably just can no longer say. The debate over free speech misses the most important issue, which is such a devastating problem that it cannot even be stated. One day I might write about it. I will now only note that there are more ways than putting someone in a gulag to discipline what others write and say. And I don’t mean threatening to chop their heads off, which is hardly a threat to any of us. You really have to be Charlie Hebdo to get into that league. But there are other things for which the costs are so massive relative to any possible good one might do, that it just isn’t done.
There is an interesting argument that I think belongs to Leo Strauss, in which he says many of the great philosophers cannot be read straight, but must be seen to have written in a kind of secret messaging code, because to say exactly what they meant would have landed them in serious trouble. I am not amongst the great philosophers, but I know just the feeling. There are some things I don’t say, and others that are said in a way that is intended to diminish the dangers such thoughts must cause. No one is infinitely brave. We all wish to see another day. But we know the kind of world we are in and hope to shape things for the better. And so we write, but on some things are not entirely straightforward. But this much I can say. Everything I have written represents what I personally believe.
And with that, I will leave off.