I'm not very good at goodbyes, so...

by: Paul Rosenberg

Fri Feb 04, 2011 at 15:00


How about, "See you around"?  I don't know where, exactly, though I do have some good ideas.  More on that at the end.

While that may suffice for us individually, though, it certainly can't for us as a community. And that's what I will miss most of all about Open Left.  Of course I'm grateful to Chris, Matt & Mike for creating this place, and then giving me the opportunity to write here.  But I've always craved online writing because of the immediacy of hearing what people think of what you've written, because there is so much to be learned.  It's axiomatic, really, that the group mind is orders of magnitude smarter than the individual mind, so the smartest thing the individual mind can do is find the best way to benefit from the group mind.

It's not just about intelligence, of course.  It's also about wisdom, compassion, humor, patience, forgiveness, forbearance, resilience... and on, and on, and on.  In a word, it's about community.  Because we are social creatures, made so by millions of year of evolution, this is the highest and deepest thing it can be about.  

It's messy as hell, though, because we're also individuals with strong ideas and the ability to articulate and defend them.  So counterpoint, more than harmony, is the ideal ideal for a place like this.  Of course the ideal isn't always realized. In fact, it's usually not.  Otherwise, it wouldn't be an ideal.  But we come close enough often enough to keep the ideal alive in the flesh, and not just some abstraction that all can agree on, because it's never real.

I wish I could mention everyone by name, and acknowledge the sorts of things I've learned from them, the things I will miss.  I wish this especially, because if I start with just mentioning one or two, then where do I stop?  There are a few of you I'd especially like to single out by name... but then that would unintentionally slight others, and that's the last thing I'd want to do.  So, I wish I could mention you all by name... even though I know I cannot.  And so, instead, I'm going to do the incredibly lame thing, and just say, "You know who you are."  But I will try to elevate it just a smidgen by adding, "And so do all the rest of us."  You've made this a truly wonderful place to write, a place that always made me want to do better next time.  A place that kept me wanting to grow.  And I hope, above all, that it was that sort of place for all of you as well.

I will continue writing, of course.  Above all, I have a backlog of ideas for books I want to write, and I'm determined to focus on getting one of them done. But I also want to keep writing online--although at a lest all-consuming pace.  Unfortunately, I've got things in the works, but not finalized yet.

That's why God invented search engines.  With date ranges.  You'll be able to find me, I'm sure of it.  I should be popping up somewhere within a couple of weeks or so.

Oh, and one more thing. Well, two, actually: The last Chatty Cathies contest was won by sTiVo's nomination of Joe Nocera, NY Times Business Writer.  The last Idiot Wind was won by jeffbinnc's nomination of Michelle Bachman's Tea Party "rebuttal" against the State of the Union speech.  

Click the links and savor what your fellow OL'ers had to say about the follies of the day.  The last word is theirs, not mine. Or yours, in comments. Good-bye.

Paul Rosenberg :: I'm not very good at goodbyes, so...

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Because it must be done (4.00 / 7)


I wish we could (4.00 / 2)
 post a clip of Buffy that has what's in Paul's signature quote.

Educate, Agitate, Organize, Mobilize, Act!


[ Parent ]
In all seriousness (4.00 / 8)
Thanks, Paul.  You not only taught me much here, you even got me to go out and read Kegan's In Over Our Heads.  Heck, I got my mother to read it, too.  

While I'm not completely convinced your world view is the correct one, I'm pretty darn sure it is closer to reality than just about anything else I've heard.  And as I stated in the previous thread, you've really managed to push me out of my comfort zone and get me to analyze the world from yet another angle (or three).  I've always enjoyed your method of analysis -- something I've never found anywhere else.


[ Parent ]
Thanks. (4.00 / 6)
I'm not completely convinced my world view is the correct one, either.  That's why it's constantly under revision.

And commentators like you have repeatedly helped me find places to focus on that need more work.

p.s.  Good for your mom!

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
Oxygen Ran A Mini-Marathan A Couple of Weekends Ago (4.00 / 2)
While this clip is perfect as a clip, what was echoing in my head as I wrote this was more along the lines of "The Prom", where Buffy is surprised to receive a special award as "Class Protector", followed up by the two-parter "Graduation Day", where the whole school is mobilized to defend themselves when the Mayor transforms into a demon.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
thank you so much for your writing Paul (4.00 / 5)
your posts have taught me me so much; the comments to them too. you are my favorite online writer and it's not even close! I hope you are back to an online place soon!

ps. I'm not good at goodbyes too...


I'm pretty weirded out. (4.00 / 16)
I want to say that I deeply appreciate you, Paul.  The thing that impressed me most about your work here was your willingness to get down in the trenches and interact with us commenters as one of us.  I haven't see much of that outside Open Left and you were the exemplar of it here.  It's beyond expressing how vital it is to be able to interact with the author of an article the way you interacted with us.

I also want to say that no where else have I found a voice as strong and consistent as yours advocating for the movement building that we really need.  Your advocacy went beyond advocacy.  You educated us, gave us new insights, and synthesized diverse knowledge into a vision.

I'm most worried about continuing to follow you.  I already know where to find others here except for you and Jeff.  How are we going to find you when you find a new online podium?

Educate, Agitate, Organize, Mobilize, Act!


thanks for your comment (4.00 / 1)
you expressed my feelings better than I did!

[ Parent ]
You could call Paul (4.00 / 1)
an actual "pragmatic progressive."

[ Parent ]
an archive website? (4.00 / 3)
Paul, I've valued your posts highly. I hope that you'll have some sort of website somewhere -- e.g., Wordpress, which is free -- where you can post all your future essays, or at least post links to your future essays, so that I can subscribe to them by RSS. - Eric Schechter

Interesting Suggestion (4.00 / 1)
Worth thinking about.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
Open Left Archive (0.00 / 0)
http://web.archive.org/web/*/http://www.openleft.com

They do good work at the...



Antemedius | Liberally Critical Thinking


[ Parent ]
I kept meaning to work this into a discussion (4.00 / 7)
Okay, so it won't ever come up, imagine you write something that points out the media is lying to us.  I brilliantly, without any pre-planning or forethought, include this picture in a response:



Don't You Just Wish (4.00 / 3)
You could read the whole story?  Not to mention the one underneath it.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
"In a word, it's about community." (4.00 / 7)
Amen brother. Be seein' ya.

Save Our Schools! March & National Call to Action, July 28-31, 2011 in Washington, DC: http://www.saveourschoolsmarch...

Jeff, where can (4.00 / 7)
we keep reading you?


Educate, Agitate, Organize, Mobilize, Act!


[ Parent ]
No sure yet. (4.00 / 10)
And it may be under my real name: Jeff Bryant. No way I'm done fighting this shit.

Save Our Schools! March & National Call to Action, July 28-31, 2011 in Washington, DC: http://www.saveourschoolsmarch...

[ Parent ]
How come so few of you have emails (4.00 / 9)
in your profiles?? Don't you realize this is exactly why we need them?

I tried running you down one by one but there were too many dead ends. So let me throw it out there -- if you shoot me an email at b.sadie@gmail.com I will friend you on facebook. That way when the Open Left diaspora finds ground, when can share that information with each other, we can find each other again.

Long Live Open Left!

Montani semper liberi


I just shot you an email (0.00 / 0)


[ Parent ]
Facebook (0.00 / 0)
That actually is a good idea.  I'd like to befriend many folks here on Facebook.  It really is a good way to keep in touch.

[ Parent ]
Thanks, Sadie! (4.00 / 3)
Why am I not surprised that you came up with this idea?

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
Here's mine out in the open for all to see (0.00 / 0)
mirandak@lummi-nsn.gov

Educate, Agitate, Organize, Mobilize, Act!


[ Parent ]
You can find me at Twitter, @graygoods, Sadie! (4.00 / 2)
And, damn, you're probably the one I will miss most. You have been a backbone of our community for so long. All the best!

[ Parent ]
I'm not on Facebook, Sadie (4.00 / 2)
but I'm really glad you want to stay in touch with folks (as do I), and will most certainly send you an email. Thanks!

[ Parent ]
Sadie (4.00 / 3)
If anything can get me to Facebook, maybe this will.  I just keep resisting.  

But I will copy your email and think about it real hard.  I have been asked to write about abortion, choice and women at C&L.  So maybe we'll meet there.  

"Incrementalism isn't a different path to the same place, it could be a different path to a different place"
Stoller


[ Parent ]
It isn't like Facebook is evil or anything (4.00 / 2)
oh, wait...

What makes Facebook work is everyone is on it.  I'm shocked how much it feels like you are really in touch with old friends you haven't seen in years.  


[ Parent ]
Only because it tries to own and control everything (0.00 / 0)
By now we know that the opening and ending of The Social Network isn't true.  He had a girlfriend and still does. He's not as mean as vicous as he seemed but...

But I still think that in a apocryphal sense it's true.  

"Incrementalism isn't a different path to the same place, it could be a different path to a different place"
Stoller


[ Parent ]
Well I have always been one (4.00 / 3)
for making the devil useful.

Montani semper liberi

[ Parent ]
Thanks to everyone who has contacted me. (4.00 / 1)
I am friending everyone as soon as I can, some are harder to find than others so bear with me.

Hopefully tomorrow I will be ready to start suggesting you all to each other.

It's weird and sad but kind of fun to take the mask off.

Montani semper liberi


[ Parent ]
there's OL survivor's blog (4.00 / 2)
link

http://olsurvivorsblog.blogspo...

"Incrementalism isn't a different path to the same place, it could be a different path to a different place"
Stoller


[ Parent ]
There are updates (0.00 / 0)
I modified settings to let anyone post comments.

Willing to give others access as authors.

"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


[ Parent ]
I sent you an email too (0.00 / 0)
There are a lot of Sadie Bakers on Facebook.

Thanks for any info.


[ Parent ]
A book on neoliberalism, I hope. (4.00 / 6)
You could just throw together a few of your posts - a book right there.

Seriously, brother, thanks. You're one of the best.


I've told Paul this (4.00 / 13)
But I first noticed him toiling in complete obscurity as one of the commetariat at Greenwald's pre-Salon blog.  Great comments, smart, insightful and read by about a dozen die hards who would actually read all 30 pages of comments to each greenwald essay.

So it was such a surprise to see him appear as a diary poster here, and then as a front pager.

I hope these days aren't finished where ordinary commenters like Paul (and me!) can end up on the front page of A-List blogs.  More and more it looks like you already need to be a mucky muck in a major progressive org, elected to something or (for Huffpo) a celebrity with opinions (however well informed).

Blogging is looking like it suffers a similar market failure to journalism though.  Valuable public good, the market is doing a shitty job of ensuring adequate resources devoted to it.


what about your plans daniel? a new online home? (4.00 / 2)
you didn't post as much as Paul but together with Paul and David you were my favorites.

[ Parent ]
Thanks. (4.00 / 4)
That means a lot.

My farewell is coming up at 4:30, including where to find me for now, as I doubt any notable blog will ask me over (not too many people like Chris out there I fear), so it will be twitter and a microblog and maybe the occasional attempt to hit the Dkos rec list.


[ Parent ]
I should tell him again, too (4.00 / 10)
So I will. Exactly my experience. Encountering Paul's comments in the midst of Unclaimed Territory's comments wilderness was like hearing a bell. That kind of clarity and good sense is rare enough to treasure whenever and wherever you happen to find it, but imagine my delight at finding it here in such abundance. I've gotten a lot out of ALL the writers here, but Paul is why I came here in the first place.

One of the better things I've done in the past couple of yesrs. Thanks, Paul.


[ Parent ]
You write my feelings also. (4.00 / 4)
I also always look for your comments, William. Clear and on point.  

[ Parent ]
William - is there anywhere we can find you? (4.00 / 2)
I'm gonna miss you otherwise, old man. : )
I'm not on Facebook, but I've sent Sadie my email address.  

[ Parent ]
What Oaktown Girl and Rick B said (4.00 / 3)
You are definitely on the top of my list of the commenters I was always on the look out for.  If you'll be out there somewhere else, I'd like to know...

Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.

[ Parent ]
What next? (4.00 / 3)
I honestly don't know where I'll fetch up now. I've been out of the loop for a couple of days, finishing up a video for the local Democrats, but I'm gonna go in a few minutes and check out the survivors blog.

Sadie's point about employing the Devil to our own purposes is well taken, but like debcoop, I don't do Facebook, even though virtually everyone I know does. Something designed for self-promotion can be put to other purposes, I know, but even though you can drive nails with a samovar, I'd prefer to use a hammer.

I have a blog of my own -- there's a link to it in my OL profile -- which I've pretty much let lie fallow since the 2010 election season began. I intend to go back to it and catch up on some earlier plans, but since I was using it mostly for longer essays, not as a proper blog, I'd hesitate to recommend it anyone even once I do.

So okay -- don't know where, don't know when... but I'll be around, and so will all of you. That in itself is a comfort, come what may.

And thanks for the kind words. Icing on the cake, while not necessary, is always appreciated.


[ Parent ]
I've had your blog bookmarked (4.00 / 1)
for a while. I'll be glad to see new content (no pressure).

I'm not on Facebook either, but this may push me over. It feels like the move to a cell phone to me - I got along with pay phones fine until they took them away because everyone else was getting cell phones. No matter how much you like VHS, that ship has sailed.

Ugh, I hope that sentiment isn't my last here....

Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.


[ Parent ]
Thanks. (4.00 / 2)
I have now bookmarked your blog.

By the way, if anyone cares they can find some of my musings at http://politicsplusstuff.blogs...
And I would really appreciate both traffic AND COMMENTS!

With a little interest I would post more. [Honest - that is not a threat.]


[ Parent ]
You'll have my traffic (4.00 / 2)
and my comments.

Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.

[ Parent ]
Me, too (4.00 / 2)
I followed Paul along with others (e.g., William Timberman*) over here. (In fact, just about the only reason why I read the comments on Glenn Greenwald's posts was to see what Paul and just a few others had to say.)

I second just about everything everyone else says, Paul. I really enjoyed your thoughtful, thought-provoking pieces. As Bert says to Mary Poppins, "Don't stay away too long."

And, FWIW, Daniel,  I never thought of you or Paul as "ordinary commenters," really.

*Oh, William says that below.


[ Parent ]
I will miss the depth of the writing here (4.00 / 9)
As a poli sci person, it was nice to be able to go to a site where hyperbole was minimal, and substance and depth of analysis were almost always maximized in posts.  I'm not sure where we can find that combo elsewhere on the Web.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to read you (4.00 / 8)
I'll miss your combination of range,wit and candor.  Not many people have the curiosity, ability and sense of social conscience to bring together ideas from the academy and the street together and make them relevant for a popular audience, with a sense of humor to boot.  All the best going forward.    

I hope you do write a book (4.00 / 3)
As for "us", we need to regroup, but I'm not sure what they will entail.

I hope you still will be around somewhere, at least.


Thanks Paul. Really. Thanks, man. (4.00 / 11)
First off, I want to thank you for your high-quality work and for the opportunity to interact, argue, quip, snark and otherwise make a mess of things from my end. It's been fun. And interesting... certainly never boring... and usually enlightening in some way. If you need a letter of reference, don't hesitate to ask!

Second, perhaps you might consider getting a copy of the OL email list so you can blast us an email en mass when you get a new gig. I think you've earned it, to say the very least. You ought to be able to import this critical mass of rabid readers/supporters and other discussants after working so hard to build that readership. It's only fair.

Third, if they don't relent on the list, steal it!

And lastly, a big Thank You to my fellow conversants: the commenters. It's been fun to interact with such a good group of people on a good natured and substantive level. There's not a one of you I wouldn't mind meeting in person--except possibly piece of cake, but my only objection is to punctuation issues that shouldn't occur in normal speech. But chances are we'll meet again on-line, as soon as the OL Collective Hivemind can commandeer another venue away from the forces of "reasonable" people. (Yes, it's a joke, as sad as that is... as far as jokes go, anyway)

Cheers, Comrades!



"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates


"my fellow conversants" (4.00 / 4)
It's been fun to interact with such a good group of people on a good natured and substantive level. There's not a one of you I wouldn't mind meeting in person...

Thanks for stating that, Emocrat, I feel the same way. (And I did sort of enjoy deciphering Mr Cake's comments, to the extent that I could.)



[ Parent ]
I tried, I really did. But it came to naught. (4.00 / 2)
I figured that when I started reading them out loud in different cadences and that still didn't help me... but it was kind of fun, as you say, a few times. ;^)

"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates

[ Parent ]
Having recently also been kicked off of TPM Cafe as it shut down (4.00 / 1)
I tend to wonder what the future is for other locations for liberals. Someone has to pay the freight. Who will?  

[ Parent ]
Thanks, Paul. (4.00 / 8)
This just isn't getting any easier.  Seems each next "goodbye" is more painful than the last, and the first was no picnic.  

Left an awful lot of links to you scattered around, Paul ... I'm really not ready to give up that habit.  I wished that WT would comment ahead of me so I could simply say, What WT said!  He'll say it a lot better than I will anyway.

For the record... what you've written is integral to my current understanding of the political world we live in.  And, I can't imagine it's not going to be an essential ingredient in understanding how to move forward.  I appreciate beyond words the way you shouldered Open Left after Chris took up a position at Kos.  It couldn't have been easy and you gave it your normal 210%.  I hope my search skills are sufficient to find you.  Rest assured that I'll be searching.

One last thing, however.  If I have to read you writing, I knew when I was 10 ..., you'll hear me scream through the ether.  ;-)

Blessings to follow you wherever you go.  And, sincerely, thanks.


You Know.... (4.00 / 5)
When I write something like that--about stuff I realized at a young age--I'm not bragging or anything.  As a deep believer in the power of situational explanations, it's my feeling that anyone fortunate enough to have had the preparation I did (very intelligent left-liberal parents, children of the Depression, etc.) would have seen or realized much the same thing.

In short, I'm saying, "In the right setting, even a kid could see..."  (As well as, "This isn't news to me," of course.)

At the same time, I have to say that I have the greatest degree of respect for those who weren't as fortunate as me.  Particularly folks like Tom Turnipseed, who came from segregationist backgrounds & became civil rights champions.  I have no idea what I might have turned out like if I'd had to start out like them.  So I'm always humbled by such people.

Now, as you were screaming...

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
good luck paul! (4.00 / 6)
it's been great reading and interacting with your work and best of luck to you wherever you end up on the internets.  keep up the good fight!!!

if - open left - (4.00 / 1)
is really dead - could I give you a present?
www:anamplace.com - Use it as a meeting place or do with it whatever you like...  

I left in a huff (4.00 / 8)
but I never stopped reading.  I was too much of a conventional liberal for this place in the end, but that didn't mean I wasn't reading you with interest and respect.

It is all very sad, and what it says about the future of blogsphere is very disturbing.  The MSM is getting better at it (See the NYT Lede), and Dkos is posting things about Bristol Palin on the front page while an echo of 1989 reveberates across the Middle East.

A place like this for the left is needed. There are serious ideological issues to resolve and I have no doubt that will not happen at DKOS.    

Good luck.


Well, I For One Missed Your Comments (4.00 / 4)
I always felt that we had much more in common than you did & your arguments raised significant points, whether or not I agreed with them in the end.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
What Sadie said below (0.00 / 0)
You have just freed up several hours in my day. And I need that time. At age 68 I am finishing up an Associate of Science in Application and Web Programming, and I really don't have any time this semester to waste on the fun stuff. So it is probably good that I am being cut off.

Nahh. Can't find the rainbow. It ain't there.  


[ Parent ]
Ahh (0.00 / 0)
but on the things I REALLY disagreed with you about, I never would comment.  :-)

[ Parent ]
I agree with Paul (4.00 / 3)
I do see you at dkos every now and then...but it's too big a place to have a real back and forth...too many fireworks...maybe dkos 4 will be better

open left really performed a function that is very much needed and we have less of it now.

It is changing.  A  Seattle blogger I know just closed down his site

"Incrementalism isn't a different path to the same place, it could be a different path to a different place"
Stoller


[ Parent ]
Thank you, debcoop (4.00 / 5)
I have been watching the traffic at some of the left blogs, and it is not a pretty picture.  Pretty much everyone is way down from 2009.  Dkos is down about 15 to 20%, and the number of commenters and diarists is down on some days by nearly a third.

The front page at dkos is flat strange.  They post minor pieces about the latest Fox outrage, but ignore Egypt.  In the comments DemfromCT (who I like) told me that they didn't think they were expert enough to comment.  It was an amazing response, since the whole idea behind "Crashing the Gates" was that the experts DIDN'T know what they were talking about.

Clearly the left blogsphere is consolidating, and the idea of a collaborative discussion of issues seem to be fading with that consolidation.  Some of this was inevitable, some was self-induced (what in God's named happened to mydd), and some a reaction to the MSM blogs.  After all, who is the average reader going to read, Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize winner, or some blogger nobody?


[ Parent ]
thanks fladem (4.00 / 1)
I know you never really took to my Left Ed posts but I always followed your analytical comments on OpenLeft and missed them when you became a lurker only. So how appropriate that your final comment on OpenLeft be this very objective and analytical observation of the progressive blogosphere. Hope we cross paths in the future.

Save Our Schools! March & National Call to Action, July 28-31, 2011 in Washington, DC: http://www.saveourschoolsmarch...

[ Parent ]
Geez Paul, (4.00 / 12)
way to free up two-three hours in my day. And I wish you had told me before I went and got that tattoo.

I will miss this place but I have a strong feeling this is not the end.

Montani semper liberi


I echo everyone here, Paul (4.00 / 3)
..you will be missed.  Will rejoice when I see you pop up online somewhere - you've got a lot of fans who like your insights and depth and a lot of good stuff to say. Or if our paths cross once again in LA.

Thanks for your stuff. Please keep doing it somewhere. (4.00 / 5)


I love your brevity (4.00 / 1)


"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


[ Parent ]
Shergald - (4.00 / 5)
thank you for your tireless efforts here at Open Left on the topic of justice for the Palestinian people.


[ Parent ]
I will second and third that (0.00 / 0)
Thanks for the many "hits" on a topic that is mostly shunned by the left blogosphere. Someone had to do it and you were it.

We should also recognize Paul's efforts with regard to I/P and the recent events in Egypt. He has been one of the not-so-many to never disappoint...


[ Parent ]
Later on (4.00 / 7)
our paths may cross again.

I once said that this place was like going to school. That was true. Just like when I left the universities, I didn't believe everything they had taught me, but I was better informed for having listened to their spiel.

Patterns over time are what I trust and respect. Yours are as positive in the direction I prefer my culture to progress as I have noted in a self-professed leftist in a very long time. (DFH if you prefer, but as a relatively clean hippy, I've always cringed at that phrase)

That whole stochastic thing is still resonating. It came up right at a time that I'm writing about the subject from a regulatory biochemical perspective (in my professional life) trying to find common mechanistic themes on multiple biological scales and time-frames. Its been a long slog. Stochastic and bistability at molecular and cellular levels amplifying to homeostasis when metazoans evolved from unicellular eukaryotes. Of course, being a solid systems science approach, it is open-ended at the more complex levels. We have some hard evidence (well-controlled) of social-level parameters influencing individual behavior with regard to nutrition and metabolic outcomes. Things like "stochastic happiness". Clearly the same notions apply to the discussions here, but the experimental evidence is lacking. Very intriguing. Ultimately hopeful.

The stochastic perspective no doubt applies to the wave of revolution sweeping the world at the moment. How to synergize with it, that's what we need to figure out.


"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


I Love The Way You Just Toss Off This Fluffy Little Comment As The Site Winds Down... (4.00 / 4)
Merrily spreading stochastic intellectual intrigue as you go.

Damn!

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
Stochasticism (4.00 / 5)
needs no home in the classical sense. We all contribute, everyday, from where-ever we are.

That's why intent is so crucial. But, as the biologists say, "necessary but not sufficient".

How to use "intent" purposefully and with "positive" effect, that's the goal of politics (hell, of living!), IMHO.

If it works, it will
happen.

"The Evolutionist's Prayer" - SpitBall circa 1998

Stay strong.

& have fun

"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


[ Parent ]
I have copied, pasted and saved your whole comment as emblematic of what kind of place this was (4.00 / 3)
And if I ever get myself another coda, I hope if it's ok for me to adapt it...If I can figure out what you're talking about.  I view that as an education itself....And the effort I am sure will keep Alzheimer's at bay.  

"Incrementalism isn't a different path to the same place, it could be a different path to a different place"
Stoller


[ Parent ]
Thank you (4.00 / 1)


"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


[ Parent ]
Thanks for the great work, Paul (4.00 / 5)
I've really appreciated your insights and hope I'll be able to read your stuff somewhere else soon.

BeyondtheChoir.org | strategy, analysis, and tools for progressive change

Geez this sucks (4.00 / 4)
You really inspire me with both the veracity and the quantity of your writing. Going to miss reading your work around here. Best of luck.

If teaching is so easy, then by all means get your degree, pass your certification test(s), get your license, and see if you can last longer than the five years in the classroom 50% of those who enter the profession never make it to.

Godspeed, Paul! (4.00 / 4)
Wherever your journey will lead you next. Damn, there's lots what I want to say, but I can't get the words together. I'm completely beside me today. All the best, man! You rock.

Can I confess (4.00 / 8)
to getting a thrill whenever I saw that you had recommended one of my comments?  It was like, "Whoa.  I guess I'm not crazy after all!"

As someone said above, your willingness to interact with us lowly commenters was fantastic.  Thank you.  You are certainly one of the most literate and personable writers on the internet, and I hope to be able to follow your (and our) further adventures in our daily soap opera 'As The Empire Turns.'


Decarbonize, Deglobalize, Demilitarize


Haven't been here much lately.... (4.00 / 6)
Stumbled here today to discover OL is gone.  I know I will miss it, and most of all Paul's prolific output, some of which I actually agreed with.

Also the commenters and posters on education have been a rich source of ideas.  Jeff, for one, and I forget who the other couple are.

"If you want that good feeling that comes from doing things for other people, then you have to pay for it in abuse and misunderstanding..."
Zora Neale Hurston


Oh, good, I get to leave a comment (4.00 / 2)
I was shocked, shocked!!, to get the e-mail that OL was closed. So sad.

I will really miss your work, Paul. You truly amaze me. You're so smart and you know so much. How do you do it???

Anyway, I hope I will find you on the internet wherever you end up, or read one of your books one day.

You contribute to my ongoing efforts to make myself accountable to myself.

Vaya con Dios!

Ditto to all the commenters to Paul's diaries. I truly enjoyed your virtual company.

Oh, BTW, have you seen -- Spitball created a blogspot at http://olsurvivorsblog.blogspo...

 


God Bless Dr. Kubler Ross (4.00 / 3)
First, thank you Paul for your willingness to share ideas in general and, in particular, your willingness to wrestle in the muck of comment threads. While I've enjoyed a number of front pagers and others here, your long thoughtful often funny pieces are what made OL worth coming back almost daily for years. So thank you for that.

As for OL, I'm somewhere between anger and bargaining. From the start, reading posts and comments here, I've felt the original owners of OL did not value the site half as much as the community of commenters, readers, and diarists did. For my taste, the first clue was that only a few of the front pagers dug in to engage readers and commenters. Quite a number of diaries, instead, seemed dumped. Good ideas, worth a read, but it was almost pointless to comment: only readers and other commenters would bother to engage.

For me, there was an amusing disconnect between diaries by the founders and all the other activity. Sometimes they converged but often they were parallel or different streams entirely. People debated the latest polling certainly. But off almost on the side they argued about Obama's motives, the history of the Democratic party, the state of US education, and many far more interesting (and critical) facets of political life. Many of these side topics are lightly covered online with such depth and engagement.

And, to be honest, since this is the last chance, FWIW, as a reader and commenter, I never felt valued by the owners of OL. Things went on in the background with infrequent transparency. The community I enjoyed somehow felt like it was run by the Wizard of Oz, except a lot nicer with lots of practical insights into current politics. But there was little engagement with people like me as to the direction of the site, keeping it viable, and all the other things that go on that sustain families and communities.

It's unfortunate that such a unique resource as OL is being let go. In business, maybe life, you're only as good as your ability to create things that can sustain themselves when you're gone. With OL, I never got the impression there was a plan beyond the founders. Instead, this wonderful vibe existed almost by accident, to my mind. And now it's gone. That's a shame. And I think Democrats and progressives, indeed any citizen trying to grasp issues enough to cast a vote, all will be less vibrant for this community going dark. If DKos, FDL, and the like are the future of progressivism, what survives, that would be unfortunate.

There's clearly a place online for what Open Left offered. Too bad it's not here. And too bad I'll have to visit half a dozen sites to find half of what could be found here. Let's hope someone steps up and somehow recreates the wonderful mix of community, engagement, ideas, and respect for each other. And, oh, please use a modern CMS next time.

Thanks again, Paul, for all your words, ideas, and hard work on behalf of this community.


Agree with much of you wrote, T. (4.00 / 2)
Yes, my opinion, too, the community aspect of the side was undervalued, and never allowed to reach its full potential. Sad. Opportunities wasted.

And, yes, DKos isn't the answer for the demand for progressive debate. Imho not even firedoglake. The closure of OL leaves a VOID.


[ Parent ]
Thanks one and all (4.00 / 5)
I've really enjoyed this site over the last couple of years. To me its depth and freedom of thought created a special niche in the blogosphere.

So now what? FDL? TPM? Not sure where we're all going to end up...

...but I look forward to seeing you when we get there.


OK, well, this totally sucks. (4.00 / 5)
And I, too, hate goodbyes. Alas, there's nothing of substance I can really add to the wonderful words and sentiments people have already said to and about Paul, and about the Open Left community's Commentariate (is that a word?).

Paul, here's a special Good Bye and Farewell YouTube video I hope you'll enjoy on all the deeper levels that only DS-9 fans truly appreciate (takes a second to load, it's cued to a certain point). It's the best way I can think of to personalize my thank you and good bye so that you'll know is uniquely from me; and also so you'll know how much I've appreciated your work here and how happy I am to have discovered you. Goddess willing, this is not Au revoir, but À toutà l'heure.

(In case my time stamp embed attempt below fails, my Good Bye and Thank you to Paul starts at 1:54 and ends at 3:00, and the link is here




Paul (4.00 / 4)
This has been a good community (dkos got too large for me and seems to have no focus that makes me want to go back) but your writing has consistently been clear, to the point and educational. If and when you start online writing again I want to know where.

Hmm. I need a closing and the only thing I can think of is "So long and thanks for all the fish."  


Thanks, Paul, for your excellent work (4.00 / 2)
Your posts have been by far my favorite things to read on the web.  I hope to follow the ongoing development of your thinking as soon as you find an adequate forum.

What can I say? (4.00 / 4)
You know I'll follow wherever you end up. Where else can I find someone who critically engages social science, pushes back on hegemony, and sprinkles it all with Joss Weadon.  


Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.

This (4.00 / 4)
This and much more. This site has done much for me and how I think. I am going to follow with interest in the days ahead to see where people end up. I hope that the community here can find a new home, perhaps at the new dailykos DK4 site with its community feature. I was an infrequent poster (despite being immortalized by writing the HTML cheat sheet linked at the top), but I love the community here and have come to rely on it to understand whats going on in the world.

Here's hoping we can find some place new.  


[ Parent ]
Oh no, what sad news! (4.00 / 2)

Paul, thank you so much for your hard work and very,
very interesting and educational writings.

You're one of the more intellectual bloggers on the web,
and then you'll post a tongue-in-cheek very funny post
that keeps me chuckling for days.

I hope you'll take a well deserved vacation and then
use the Open Left email list to let us acolytes know
where you've landed.

Looking forward to reading your next book, blog post,
article, etc...


Sometimes it would take me days… (4.00 / 2)
...to get through some of your posts, Paul. But to say they were "worth it" would be an understatement. I'll be looking for you elsewhere...no doubt...

"This ain't for the underground. This here is for the sun." -Saul Williams

Your pieces were and are great, Paul (4.00 / 2)
I am going to miss this place though I didn't comment much.

Thank you for writing here.



HELLO! (4.00 / 1)
it is not acceptable that this 'club' dissolves - and IF it is only about 'money' - the problem is easy to resolve. I am willing to spent 30$ a month for 'the progressive company' of the people I met here.
So we only need another 150? people who are willing to spent the same amount. There are over a hundred posters here who want to stick together - and I realize some might not have the money - so let's find a way -(as anonymous once wrote) - to get the dough.

Let's organize it like a real company. The 30$ are 'shares' - an investment in a site which soon will show all the other lefty sites what's what. To start - we need a headliner - I vote for Paul. He draws a salery. We then need as strong as a particpation as the reaction to the closing of Open Left. That shouldn't be a problem because with having a 'share' - everybody will be much more involved (in creating a interesting site - finding more shareholders etc etc)

Blogging as usual will not be enough - So we also have to get more into problem solving and act more like a 'think tank' -(even if we hate the word) - Huff is pretty clever and -(for example)- by helping 'people' - to think through the dilemma with their 'underwater houses' they helped themselves for example creating lots of 'traffic'.
That doesn't mean we should be into 'traffic' - I always loved the idea of a small 'elitist thinking blog' - where (after a while) - people (hopefully) will beg to become a member -(and if they can afford it - pay much more than a 30$) -    

So it's very easy - and entirely up to y'all!
We just need about 150 'club members -(cancel the membership of your dogclub instead) - and then we will be able (again) to discuss all kind of things and I can bitch about it -(I need that!)
For example - I am very curious lately - if you can get rid of a dictator without doing so much damage to (ourselves) - 'the people' - and so I take the 'freedom' to post this suggestion on all these ByeBye posts -
Make it fly???      


Brilliant (4.00 / 1)
That's a brilliant idea!

I'm in.


[ Parent ]
so that makes two - (0.00 / 0)
what's about -(in short)
libwing-matson-hurt-rosenberg-mizner-mathprof-jeffb-sadie-gray-oakgirl-debcoop-de groot-timbermann-kalb-jeffwein-wobbly-emerson-emocrat-bystander-fladem-alyosha-spitball-shergald-smucker-michaelin-klafehn-dixon-upward-tslavin-glacier-rickb-mej-essayw-trublu-priceman-dkmich-jacobsen- and everybody else - who is registered here?

[ Parent ]
If you build it (4.00 / 1)
I will come. With cash.


"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


[ Parent ]
If there are enough pledges - (0.00 / 0)
WE can built it - And as you have demonstrated with your Ersatz-Open-Left-site - it's pretty easy nowadays to run a Website with blogs.
(We have one available too-  you could change right away into 'the progressive company')
So let's collect these names - I saw HousesofProgress seems to be interested too - and where is Anonymous who once offered very concrete help?

[ Parent ]
and perhaps - (0.00 / 0)
somebody could put 'the brilliant idea' in a 'propper' form -(I'm a bit too 'skittish') - and post it on reddit and all other progressive sites to get some 'outside' shareholders too!  

[ Parent ]
OK (0.00 / 0)
use the new thread on the OLsurvivor Blog to create this "list".


"It sounds wrong...
     ...but its right."


[ Parent ]
I want to say so long, too. (4.00 / 3)
You, Matt, and the frank, open conversation and community of OL are what I will miss the most. You and OL taught me alot and introduced me to new (and smart) people, ideas, things.   I, too, would like to know where you are headed so that I can follow.   Thanks for everything.  If anybody can change the world, it is the folks at this blog.  Good luck.  

All the best (4.00 / 4)
I regularly read only one blog, confining most of my internet politicking to news sites. I started at others and eventually found OL, truly an oasis in a vast desert. And Mr. Rosenberg was the well who kept the water flowing here, intellectually speaking. One that invited many an intriguing and stimulating caravan to stop and stay for a while.

A big loss. But things change.


Did they get you to trade your heroes for ghosts? Hot ashes for trees? Hot air for a cool breeze? And cold comfort for change?


Well, this is a surprise. (4.00 / 3)
I had my differences with Paul, on more than one occasion, but I will say I always appreciated his willingness to stick around in the comments and defend his position.  That sort of give and take can be exhausting (especially amongst such entrenched positions), but Paul always made the effort and I respect him for it.  I wish him well in whatever he does next.

Goodbye OL and good luck to all!


I tried to warn you. I did! (4.00 / 1)
I told you Talky Tina™ would get even! You don't know her like I do. She's been the ruin of many a poor boy who dared to toy with her affections. And she's insanely jealous of Chatty Cathy®. Perhaps next time you'll take her (and me) more seriously.
Living Doll (The Twilight Zone) - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L...
TINA'S PISSED (VIDEO, 01:18) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...
P.S. Thanks for all the great articles on politics, communication, sociology, psychology, epistemology etc.
I learned some stuff. Really, I did!
By the way, I think perhaps Miss Sarah's crap is written by Scheunemann rather than the Fink...

Thanks, Paul (0.00 / 0)
Agreed with some of what you wrote, disagreed with more.  Enjoyed (and learned from) the exchanges.  Can't wish for more.

Fare thee well, Paul (0.00 / 0)
And please do let us all know what next for you (why not a blog all your own?). Though I was not a frequent commenter here (time being what it is - short and shifty) I have greatly appreciated the kind of in-depth analysis you provided -  and the forum it became for so many first rate commenters. Especially enjoyed some of the food fights (from the side lines, of course). A truly rare balm for tortured progressive souls. True to meta, and at an unaccustomed loss for words, I'll paraphrase my own comment I put on the HouseofProgress quick hit:

"I thought OL was a very unique organization that did much to promote discussion of directions and strategies for a progressive movement. ...OL blazed an especially unique trail in a land where dreams and reality can find some common ground, if only at the margins".

Who would have thunk that a touch of science and smidgen of Buffy combined in a goulash of wonk and political circumstance can add up to such insightful delicacy?

Though I still cannot be as present as I'd like, it is my intention to follow you, de groot, and the rag tag army of fine thinking commenters that assembled here to wherever they'll go.

Oh, and I liked Sirota, leftEd and Lux too (among others), but hope it's OK to play favorites?

PS I often comment at Mondoweiss (as Danaa) and sometimes at Glenn Greenwald's place under another handle. Can supply e mail to whoever is interested.


OMG I just found out! (3.00 / 1)
I've been away for several months and wasn't able to post. I got back last week and have been doing a lot of catching up, and didn't come here till now. So sorry for the late adieu, assuming anyone still reads the comments. It was great participating on this site, which I always viewed as a more distilled version of DKos that attracted a more spin and hype-free type of leftie. It was especially great reading your diaries and interacting with you and the site's many other great members, and I will definitely miss it. Compared to DKos, it's like the difference between being at a conference and being at your favorite corner bar with your buddies.

Paul, I hope you continue to write online. Any chance you'll ever establish a presence at DKos? With the new version of the site just gone online, perhaps you'd be better able to avoid the bots and trolls. There are some pretty intense members there who can tell hype from substance and aren't afraid to mix it up.

Anyways, good luck, take care, and keep telling the truth--especially where it's not welcome!

"Those who stand for nothing fall for anything...Mankind are forever destined to be the dupes of bold & cunning imposture" -- Alexander Hamilton


Kovie (0.00 / 0)
If you haven't yet, check out the Survivors Blog, where various commuters are regrouping.

http://olsurvivorsblog.blogspo...

Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.


[ Parent ]
Me also (3.00 / 1)
I am also not good at good bye :D
So we should live with friendship ;)

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