OK, I'm all for democracy on the web. For allowing all opinions and sides on an issue get aired. But the state of the discourse taking place in the average political blog's open discussions have sunk so low  that I'm beginning to question their usefulness. And contrary to my general feelings about censorship, I'm becoming increasingly in favor of more strict moderation on some larger political sites like Politico.

Before I go into this, I feel I must preface it by saying that here at Pam's [awesome] House Blend the discourse is generally of a higher caliber and so I think makes a good place to air my little grievance. 

That said, over at Politico they are talking about the roll-call vote for Hilliary at Denver.  It's a meaty subject that should inspire some lively discussion. Instead, if the reader is brave enough to wade into the cesspool that is the comments, one will find crap about Sen. Obama's middle name, questions about his legitimacy long disproved, name calling and such with the occasional thoughtful if not misguided comment. Typical. The comments amount to little more than a megabyte or two of wasted server space somewhere. 

In many cases, participating in the comments in political blogs is sort of like dumpster diving. You know you can find cool stuff if you'll but jump in and rummage around, you just don't want anyone to see you actually in the dumpster.

I understand the arguement against more strict, gatekeeper-like moderation, but I think where certain publications are concerned and where a truly balanced non-biased moderator can be found it may be useful to the cause of good discourse and useful arguement to moderate more strictly.

slobeck

slobeck