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November 21, 2003


PZ Myers

I agree with you that the ownership of TCS does not taint (or enhance) the quality of the articles published there. No harm, no foul on the authors.

I also agree that this whole issue is relatively minor and undeserving of all the attention paid to it.

I really think the bottom line is a little different, though. The real question is, now that you know that it is owned by a lobbying firm, would you publish there again? Would you have published there before if you'd known?

Whether that's good or fair to TCS, no matter what your answer, is another question, I think, and one on which reasonable people can disagree.


Like everyone else, I agree that this is relatively minor. What I'm interested in is: how do people feel this maps onto the rightist indignation that some anti-war demonstrations were organized by ANSWER? My reaction to the ANSWER issue was not to care. I don't see any reason why this is significantly more important.

Brett Bellmore

"if you can imagine feeling annoyed if the NY Times started selling ads that looked like articles and weren't identified as ads..."

Thought they did, every election. Except, of course, they don't charge for 'em, they're "in kind" contributions instead.

Doesn't bother me, except for the pretense of objectivity.


To be precise, you say:

That is, a few lefties seem to be arguing: TCS is a sort of astroturf lobbying front -> TCS publishes crap. Most righties seem to be running this argument in reverse. Since TCS does not publish crap, i.e. it's OK or even quite good, thank you -> TCS cannot be some sort of astroturf lobbying front.
My feeling is: TCS doesn't publish crap, therefore it doesn't really matter whether or not it's an astroturf lobbying front. Likewise, the anti-war demonstrations were things that were worth holding, so it didn't really matter that ANSWER were involved in them.

PZ Myers

Oooh, ANSWER makes for an excellent analogy, and I feel exactly the same way.

sankar chandak

i liked it

Hilke Liddi

very informal ...

Hilke Liddi

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Hilke Liddi

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Tobias Joel

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See you again next time I surf around.


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