Dealing With Fear: Side Note Side Note

The previous post came out of an answer to a comment by anthonyallen on Dealing With Fear — Part 1: Everyday Life. This post comes out of an aside to THAT answer, and actually has nothing at all to do with fear. It’s all a bit meta, I guess, but I hope worth reading.

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A big aside for everybody else reading this:

Just FYI, most of the bloggers here get NOTHING for doing what they do. And oh my, it does take some work (sometimes hours of it) to fill up a blog every day. The payment is, well, two things: One, the satisfaction of expressing something well-enough that people will want to read it, but also Two, the connections we make with the minds and hearts of the real people out there in Reader Land.

If you feel moved to make a comment every once in a while, especially something heartfelt like the contributions of anythonyallen, it makes us bloggy people feel like this has all been worthwhile.

By the way, you know those right-winger – or Christian – websites you come across so often where they shut off comments, or delete comments they don’t like?

It’s because they have a very different picture in their heads of what blogging is about.

MY picture of blogging – the picture of every blogger on FreeThought Blogs, and probably most of those in the progressive/liberal/atheist blogosphere – is a community. A place where everybody contributes so we all end up with something bigger, stronger and more intelligent.

But the ‘winger picture of blogging is this:

A microphone on a stage, with one spotlight, and a dark, silent audience, there to listen to the preaching. A place where uncritical minds seek the wise guidance and opinions of the fully-formed, knows-it-all LEADER.

To which I say: Fuck that. I already know I’m not smart enough to figure it all out on my own, much less to force people to listen to me as if I have. (News flash to Bill O’Reilly and company: Neither are you.)

Blogging is a community effort. Or it’s preaching.

Blog-preaching sucks and blog preachers are pretentious morons. Because they don’t get – they don’t WANT – the input they need to be better and smarter.

Here and elsewhere on FTB, pitch in and let us know what you think. Keep us honest and compassionate and part of the community.

And in case we forget to tell you: For all you do, just reading, or reading and commenting … Thanks!

  • http://freethoughtblogs.com/lousycanuck/ Jason Thibeault

    You’re welcome!

    Also, thanks!

    And, inb4 “FtB squelches dissent!” from some MRA or religious nutbag.

  • fastlane

    What you’re describing is the difference between an Authoritarian follower and those who are not. If you have not read Bob Altemeyer’s The Authoritarians yet, you need to. Get on it!

    And keep up the great writing.

    • judykomorita

      I second that book. You can find it free online, as well.

    • machintelligence

      I’ll add to that recommendation. If the whole book (short though it is) seems a bit daunting, read his comments on the tea party to get a feel for the topic.

  • fastlane

    What you’re describing is the difference between an Authoritarian follower and those who are not. If you have not read Bob Altemeyer’s The Authoritarians yet, you need to. Get on it!

    And keep up the great writing.

    • machintelligence

      I’ll add to that recommendation. If the whole book (short though it is) seems a bit daunting, read his comments on the tea party to get a feel for the topic.

  • Johnny Vector

    You just keep writing, man, and I’ll keep reading. Wait, what? I’m supposed to contribute? That sounds like work! How have I gotten so sleepy? Time was I would just hike up to the top of Humphreys Peak on a whim. Now some days I look at my bike in the morning and just have to drive the car to work.

    But okay, I’ll try to contribute. Because you’re right, that’s the best kind of blog. I first understood that with Dispatches. There are people who agree with you, from whom you’ll learn little, and people who completely disagree, who are just wrong so what are you going to learn from them. Then you get a Michael Heath, who over the years convinces you that he really knows what he’s talking about, and when he says something you disagree with, it’s time to sit up and really think about what you think. That right there, that’s a blog community.

  • martha

     “MY picture of blogging – the picture of every blogger on FreeThought Blogs, and probably most of those in the progressive/liberal/atheist blogosphere – is a community. A place where everybody contributes so we all end up with something bigger, stronger and more intelligent.”

  • martha

     “MY picture of blogging – the picture of every blogger on FreeThought Blogs, and probably most of those in the progressive/liberal/atheist blogosphere – is a community. A place where everybody contributes so we all end up with something bigger, stronger and more intelligent.”


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