Saturday, May 13, 2006

Bonne Chance

Apparently, Rod intends to answer Jonah's critique. He says in today's Corner: "BTW, I'm stuck inside all day writing a new chapter for the paperback version, in which I'll address the main criticisms Jonah made in his magnum opus essay. (I can't do all of them, because his essay is as long as the chapter is supposed to be)." What, no patio lunches? No forays to the neighborhood wine bar?

At least we have an admission (albeit tacit) that Rod has yet to answer the main points of contra crunchies.

I can hear the gears grinding in Rod's head all the way out here on the east coast. BONNE CHANCE ROD! You'll need it.


Blogger Bubba said...

Thanks for posting that, Kathleen.

A couple thoughts crossed my mind while I read the Corner entry you cite.

- First, there's this odd comment:

"What I regret is not that I held back criticism of the free market, but that I ought not to have tiptoed around it at several points in my book, instead of writing boldly."

He didn't hold back criticism, but he did tiptoe around that criticism, instead of writing boldly. Is there a difference? Is that difference substantial?

- Not sure what to think of the fact that the book's being republished as a paperback. That's certainly a sign that it met and perhaps exceeded the publisher's expectations, but were those expectations high? Have a lot of people bought Rod's book?

- Kathleen, you're absolutely right that the email indicates that Rod never adequately addressed Jonah's criticism. I didn't much doubt that, as he never did point to those blog entries that supposedly indirectly addressed the critique, and it seems unlikely that the book adequately addressed the concerns the first time (and that, subsequently, Jonah missed it or did not read the book in good faith).

I feel quite vindicated.

- However, I do doubt that the response will be all that substantive; I can print Jonah's article onto 7 pages, and Rod's chapter will be shorter?

Some might say that I would never be satisfied with any reply. It may be true enough that I don't think there are adequate responses to Jonah's criticisms (assuming an accurate summary of Rod's book and thesis), but I would be happy to see those criticisms get a fair hearing.

Maybe Rod can do so briefly; I'll read the addendum when it comes out, even if that means doing so in the bookstore.

In the meantime, I'll still read Rod's book sometime this summer.

Before that, I can say that I think the entire conversation's been helpful in making me consider the conflict between freedom and tradition -- both of which may be necessary to allow and encourage virtue, both of which may be destructive to virtue if taken too far.

But a lot of my deliberation has been despite Rod's writing, not because of it.

2:51 PM  
Blogger Bubba said...

And, by the way, am I the only one who's found Rod's blog to have become suddenly boring? Rod's sounding more and more like Daniel Larison, in quoting a guy who thinks that what we need now is "a politics [plural?] more deeply human, more truly radical, something both old and new, a moral vision that might teach us anew what any healthy family, church, neighborhood, or nation already knows: how to conserve and liberate at once."

(What? It shouldn't taste great and be less filling too? Should it not be a floor wax and a dessert topping?)

Meanwhile, the comments sections have little more than howls from moonbats and amen's from the crunchy congregation, neither of which is all that interesting.

While I don't think Rod should use to blog to defend his sensibility into perpetuity, he should justify (or should have justified) it more thoroughly. I personally would find interesting discussions about how to make a community sacramental if I had first been persuaded that such a thing was worth the effort.

3:02 PM  
Blogger Pauli said...

You know how when people talk about smoking pot they say, "Well that leads to cocaine and cocaine leads to heroin...."

Well, along those lines, check out Reactionary Radicals for the next phase of free-market bashing, wild-eyed populist anarchy. It's like the NRO crunch blog on acid in a Ferrari going 125mph down the highway with no rails. These are vampire moonbats, my friend; next to these guys, Crunchy Conservatives resemble George Bush and John McCain.

6:21 AM  

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