September 18, 2014 Update: The contents of this post are out of date; I’m leaving the post up for archival purposes. -Ari
I’ve already made a few technical changes to the blog. I turned the column widths into percentages rather than fixed pixels. I added a link for comments. Note that comments will be moderated ruthlessly, as most unmoderated comments that I’ve seen are basically worthless (or worse).
More importantly, though, I’ve decided to narrow the scope of the blog. One of my friends persuaded me that a more focused blog is more useful than one with random comments. Now, the description says, “Notes on politics, religion, and culture.” Granted, that’s still extremely broad. However, I had been planning to include more notes about products, recipes, etc. Now, I’ll include such personal matters only rarely.
The purpose of the blog is to advocate reason based on sensory experience; individual rights, liberty, and capitalism; and life-enhancing values. I will therefore criticize religion, political violations of rights, and cultural problems such as moral subjectivism and nihilism. I am most influenced by Ayn Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism, though I continue to struggle with some of its tenets.
I’m going to try to use the “labels” function to its full effect. I’m going to label every post with one (or more) of five main tags: politics, religion, books, art, culture, and personal. Then I may add additional labels that are more specific. For example, a post about art might be further labeled as movies, music, or fine art. The category for culture is intended as a catch-all for culturally interesting items that don’t seem to fit elsewhere.
So now I think my blog is on track. Perhaps it’s worth mentioning my goals in blogging. First, writing a blog will help me formalize my thoughts about particular issues. Writing for an audience generally demands more rigor than merely mulling something over. Second, I’ll be able to search my own blog as a way to help me remember particular things. Third, I hope to persuade readers. The point, after all, is to facilitate positive cultural change, not merely to complain about what’s wrong. Fourth, I hope that the blog draws readers’ attention to my other projects.
So I’m ready to take the dive…