Natalie Solent proved right about blogging yet again

This was and is Ms. Solent\’s point about the whole thing.

Mr Sumner’s blog not only revealed his market monetarism to the world at large (“I cannot go anywhere in the world of economics…without hearing his name,” says Mr Cowen). It also drew together like-minded economists, many of them at small schools some distance from the centre of the economic universe, who did not realise there were other people thinking the same way they did. They had no institutional home, no critical mass. The blogs provided one.

Ms. Solent made the observation some 6 or 7 years ago. Nice to see that The Economist has caught up.

As an aside about the magazine itself. I used to read it religiously, cover to cover. Up until, hmm, about 2007, 2008. For before that it was an excellent wide ranging review of what was happening in odd parts of the world, often a very good guide to what was going to happen.

Since then it\’s been rather a non-interesting roundup of what I\’ve already read that week. Perhaps not of the actual pieces I\’ve already read (although you can sometimes spot exactly where an idea has come from) but of the general news I\’ve already seen online.

Just to make clear, this harrumph about the magazine is nothing to do with Ryan Avent getting Megan McArdle\’s job blogging for them even though I tried out for it (and not even never being told sweet FA by the editor about whether or why I hadn\’t got the job, very bad form that).

Nope, nothing at all……

13 comments on “Natalie Solent proved right about blogging yet again

  1. ” I used to read it religiously, cover to cover. Up until, hmm, about 2007, 2008.” – yes, me too, just stopped reading it about that time.

    I had been keeping copies going back to the late eighties. I threw them all away.

  2. I used to read it religiously, cover to cover. Up until, hmm, about 2007, 2008. For before that it was an excellent wide ranging review of what was happening in odd parts of the world, often a very good guide to what was going to happen.

    Yup, me too. I used to subscribe from 2000 to about 2007/8 when I stopped reading it.

    Firstly, I thought it went downhill, and swapped an open-minded liberal tone for one of big-government nanny-statism on too many topics for my liking. Or perhaps that just represented the change in my own political views, I don’t know. But nowadays when I read it, I can’t stand the carping, hectoring tone which sounds more like an establishment trying to keep the status quo from which it benefits than anything else.

    Secondly, I discovered on my travels that much of what they wrote about obscure parts of the world was shite. Their articles on Russia were pretty awful, and I realised that when I started living there. I figured that if the stuff I know about is bad, what else is?

  3. and not even never being told sweet FA by the editor about whether or why I hadn’t got the job, very bad form that

    Didn’t go to Balliol, old boy! Dashed shame, eh what?!

    BP did the same thing to me, BTW. Arseholes.

  4. Can’t argue that the Economist has been on a downward trend for a few years, but for better or worse I a still subscribe. The main reason being able to download a talking issue and listen to it whilst out on my bike rides or pottering about doing those mundane tasks that The Great Wise One won’t let me ignore.

  5. I too read it for years and discontinued my subscription in 2008/2009 – funny that – too pro EU, Global warming etc and in my view they had lost much of the quality, wit, insight and humanity they had had when I began to subscribe way back in the lat 80’s.

  6. >Yup, me too

    Me also0. I subscribed from 1993 to 2003 or something like that, and I also used to read it cover to cover. I also had the same experience as Tim (Newman) of discovering that the Economist’s writers’ knowledge of things it was writing out was shallow (to put it kindly) when I learned significant amounts about the subject myself, and stopped trusting it on other subjects.

    Going for a job, having one (or several) interviews and never hearing from the potential employer ever again has happened to me far too many times. A letter (or even an e-mail) consisting of “Thank you for coming in, but sorry” surely isn’t very hard.

  7. I’m about to cancel my subscription based on an article about low-quality over-crowded apartments with all sorts of calls for government regulation and nothing about increasing their supply.

  8. I hereby predict vast amounts of health, wealth and happiness. for everyone reading this, especially me. (Just saying that, in case causality on this business of my predictions turning out to be true runs the other way.)

    Splendid as it is to have predicted rightly, I don’t exactly recall when I made that prediction. You might have been referring to the last line of this post in which I said, “… just look how far you have to read before you come to any suggestion that the grievances of the rioters justify riots. One way in which consensus opinion changes is when scattered individuals become aware that many others share their opinions.”

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