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Catastrophic Success

As if there weren't enough political opinionating out there, I, too, now sing the body bloglectric. Let me FEED you![XML]

Location: United States

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Thank you Mr. Den Beste

While I was off-line last week, Nelson at Europundit speculated about Stephen Den Beste coming back to the blogosphere. I must say that I harbored the same hope. SDB had explained his writing process as something that burst forth from him after percolating in his subconscious for a while. He would then compose, edit and post the resulting brainstorm. He was always a brightspot in black hole of the internet. I would anxiously await a post from him, because I always knew that he would provide some insight, viewpoint or perspective that I either was completely unaware of, believed already but for vague reasons, or was dead against and he at least provided a reasoned argument against it.

It is because of him that words like Jacksonian, mechanist, Transnational Progressivism and Philosophical Idealism (p-idealism) have entered my vocabulary. I spent inordinate amounts of time searching his site for more insight and more information and more of the world as seen through the eyes of a systems engineer. Then, about 6 months after I found his page, he abruptly decided to quit. He had intimated for a long time that the energy required to sift through the trash thrown his way by the ignorant was not worth putting forth anymore and that keeping the blog was just no fun for him. It had been sucked out by those energy vampires. I suspected that given time, his subconscious would not let him rest until he purged the backup of information caused by an extended absence. I was wrong.

In Nelson's comments, SDB reveals the deeper reason for quitting. He has a deteriorating debilitating disease that he is fighting, but can not cure. In order to make his posts, he was consuming increasingly larger quantities of a medication that had very unpleasant side effects. The scale finally tipped where the pain of the side effects outweighed the pleasure of blogging. I hereby put away my hopes of SDB returning to the blogosphere beyond Chizumatic and relish the archives of the USS Clueless (ever may she fly). I wish Mr. Den Beste all the dignity and quality of life I qould wish for myself.

I don't have any information beyond what was posted by SDB at Nelson's site (also archived at Rishon Rishon for posterity). I don't know if it is a debilitation of the body or the mind, but either is a crime. The disabilities I find most unjust are those which trapped a brilliant mind in a withering body. I find far too many examples of weak or incapable brains in exceptional bodies, I suppose universal balance (were I to believe in such things) would dictate exceptional minds in weak or incapable bodies, but it still frustrates me on their behalf. The most obvious example is Dr. Stephen Hawking, probably our most intelligent fellow human of our age. If such a fate is destined for Mr. Den Beste, then it only proves that any omnipotent deity has too acute a sense of irony or black humor to be worth worshipping.

Mr. Den Beste was highly influential on me as an American, a thinker and as a blogger. I prefer his essay style to the "Here-have-a-link" blogs like LGF or MetaFilter and, in fact, I try for that here as well. I also like to point people to links I find interesting so there will be some of that here, but most of my posts are attempts at nearing SDB's greatness. I think all blogs out there have a blogfather or blogmother. It's not the person who introduced you to blogs necessarily, but the person who defined, by example, what a blog and what blogging is. Mr. Den Beste is my blogfather. I owe him thanks for that.

I want to thank him from a grateful nation. His words performed a service desperately needed at the beginning of the War on Terror, although I didn't discover him until later. His essays resound with the American Spirit throughout and I can think of no greater compliment than to call him a Great American. I found a kindred spirit behind his posts and, although, he'll never know who I am, or that I even wrote this, I will be forever thankful that he was there.

I know that I might have two or three regular readers, but I would encourage everyone to visit his site, and in the late evening to download his entire library (but not everyone at once, he pays for his own bandwidth).

On the off-chance you read this Mr. Den Beste, thank you and I wish you all the best.