Saturday, 16 February 2008

Blog Updates & Good News

As you may have noticed, after a bit of a posting lull I've started to post things other than Videos of the Week here on Question That again over the past few days. The reason for the semi-hiatus is that I spent the time away from home, travelling in South East Asia and staying with friends in New Zealand. Now I'm back in the country I intend to get the blog fully up and running again.

I've updated my most-read blogs. I intend to keep it as a top 12 from now. I took off PJC Journal and Mr Eugenides, more because they overlapped with other blogs that remain on the list than because they've gone downhill in any significant way. The 12 represent a nice spread across the political spectrum of frequent-posting thought-provoking bloggers with plenty to say. To give a quick run-down:
A Very Public Sociologist is the blog of a socialist and sociologist named Phil, with a well-articulated left perspective on British politics refreshingly devoid of the infighting and sectarianism associated with most of the better known far-left blogs.
Blogzilla is the blog of internet expert and former director of Privacy International Dr Ian Brown. It's not the most frequently updated blog on the list, but it is very strong on civil liberties and anti-database state/ID cards posting - it's clear the author really knows what they're talking about.
Devil's Kitchen is the big name on the free-market libertarian strand of the British blogosphere. Its author is newly affiliated with the Libertarian Party UK. Profane rants are the immediate stand-out feature of DK's blog, but the ranting is backed up by some formidable argument on a wide range of issues particularly relating to British and European parliamentary politics, economics, and civil liberties.
Inversions & Deceptions is the blog of Fabian Tassano, author of Mediocracy. Offers an intelligent right-wing perspective on academia, education, ideology and political theory.
Liberal Conspiracy started in November and has developed into a major fixture of the centre-left British blogosphere, with semi-regular contributions from a wide-range of broadly 'liberal' bloggers. Worth visiting for Aaron Heath's solid 'Casting the Net' blog review posts; worth staying for some fascinating debates that develop in response to contribitions.
Longrider is a libertarian blog concentrating mainly on attacking authoritarianism wherever it may rear its head. Particularly strong on freedom of expression.
Neil Harding is the bete noire of the libertarian blogosphere, an old Labour blogger who posts in support of Government measures most other issues bloggers are united in opposing including ID cards, the DNA database and the smoking ban. He hates 'Tories' (especially Boris Johnson) and 'bloggertarians', and is IMO easily the most controversial blog of the centre-left.
NHS Blog Doctor is the Daddy of the public service bloggers. He took a long break from blogging recently, but is back going strong now. I am a big fan of many of this category of blogs of which NHS Blog Doctor is perhaps the finest example - they provide a real insight that just wouldn't have been available (certainly not for free) a decade ago.
Obsolete is the curate's egg of this set of 12. As with several of the others it is strong on civil liberties issues, though coming from a somewhat more left-liberal perspective than the likes of DK. Lately it has focused its attentions less frequently on the Government and more frequently on the print media, particularly the tabloids.
Political Betting is a veritable blogging institution, looking at politics - particularly elections both UK and abroad - from the perspective of the gambler, bringing a valuable distant objectivity to often very in-depth discussions. At the moment the US Primaries and London Mayoral Election are the main topics of discussion.
Stumbling & Mumbling, by Chris Dillow (author of 'The End of Politics') is as far as I'm concerned the British political theory blog. Thoughtful posts almost every day, and discussions that in intelligence are a cut above the average blog are what you'll find here. Even if you don't agree with Dillow's positions (and I often find something to disagree with here), S&M is a more than worthwhile regular read.
Tim Worstall is a free-market libertarian and amateur economist who also writes for the Adam Smith Institute and The Business. He usually writes several posts a day when he's not trading in metals, and can be sure to point out dubious facts and bad economics wherever they may appear in the press.

Last but not least, I am very pleased to post that there has been some good news on an issue I wrote several posts about late last year. Jahongir Sidikov, the dissident who passively resisted deportation from the UK to Islam Karimov's Uzbekistan (Link) was granted asylum on 25 January following pressure from bloggers, particularly Craig Murray, and MPs, particularly Bob Marshall-Andrews. QT congratulates them, and also all of the bloggers listed here.


Tim Worstall said...

One small correction.
I'm not really an economist: enthusiastic amateur perhaps, but an undergraduate degree 25 years ago doesn't really qualify me as a professional.

QT said...

I've updated the post to qualify your description as an economist.