Opinions I enjoyed reading about the real world, outside the philosophick aether:
What if Political Scientists Covered the News? The Monkey Cage links approvingly (and here’s a good example of exactly what they’re talking about). The short version of this, with respect to the BP spill, at xkcd. Which, incidentally, is why I haven’t been following the BP story too closely. Because I’m with Dan Drezner on this one. Obama does not bear much if any responsibility for this. And we should stop pretending that he does.
Speaking of foreign policy, that whole Israel-Gaza-blockade-flotilla thing happened. Them’s dangerous waters to tread in, opinion-wise, but what I love about the blogosphere is the utter disrespect for political orthodoxy or the conventions of political speech. So, Dan Drezner again, comparing Israel to North Korea. And Andrew Exum (pretty recent Penn alum!) calling Israel incompetent (operationally, not just with respect to grand strategy). My personal opinion coincides pretty well with Jonathan Chait’s (Feel free to skip the first paragraph).
The poll numbers were apparently all kinds of screwed up in Colombia. But that’s OK, because there’s still a run-off in a few weeks, so they have another shot at it.
The Pill’s fiftieth anniversary was this week. I won’t link to the Front Porch’s response, because I find it so appalling, and so empty. But the League links to it, and there’s pretty good discussion in the comments so far. Regardless, the pill has had a bigger impact on us than the internet – and I couldn’t say which will have been more important in a century – so it’s worth thinking about deeply. Which is just about the only virtue of the FPR piece.
Yglesias responds to the claim that blogging is now an inevitably professional venture.