Carnival of the Something-or-other

by Ted on April 8, 2005

Last week, I asked newish bloggers to send me links to their strongest posts. One of the smarter traditions of the right-wing blogs is their various “Carnival of the ….” link roundups, in which blogs volunteer themselves for links from higher-traffic blogs by presenting the posts that they are proudest of. On the left, we don’t do so much of that.

If none of my fellow Timberites object, I’m going to try to do this once a month or so. People who began blogging after January 1, 2004 or so are invited to send me links to their best posts as the month goes on. Also, anyone is welcome to suggest a better name for these sorts of roundups. “Carnival of the Reality-Based” seemed kind of lame.

Dave at The Big Lowitzki’s Random Ravings asks, “What is pro-life?”

Taryl Cabot at non-ecumenical ramblings has a fun post about inventions that still need inventing (N.B.- I think that this was the post that I was referred to… stupid Blogspot. If I’m wrong, I’ll change the link.)

Kenneth Rufo at Progressive Commons has a long and serious post about rhetoric and strategy, titled “How Not to Respond to the Luntz Memo”.

The Corpuscle has a letter to a young person, “Young Person’s Guide to Democracy”. (I’m liking this one, too: “Brand New Gay Stereotype, Gratis”.)

Adam Kotsko has obviously had his share of pledge drives.

Nick at News From Beyond The North Wind has a post about another corner of the Victorian attic, the Keswick Museum.

Alex at Bloodless Coop has a meditation on the intersection of reason and politics that doesn’t let the political left off scot-free.

Alex is also a member of a terrific group blog on neuroscience and psychology called Mind Hacks. Here’s a fascinating post on the drug ketamine, a recreational drug that produces symptoms similar to those seen in schizophrenia.



donna 04.08.05 at 11:10 am

Um, tons of carnivals here, of all stripes:


Ted 04.08.05 at 11:21 am

Dang. Had no idea there were so many. Thanks for the link.


anatoly 04.08.05 at 12:20 pm

Egad, this “Young Person’s Guide” stuff is just awful.

And yet, it’s instructive in that “Gosh, there really are people who genuinely think like this” way, so thanks for bringing it to my attention, I guess.


binky 04.08.05 at 12:21 pm

Actually, Alex is at Bloodless COOP. We are at Bloodless Coup ( But we like the Coop too. :)


Ted 04.08.05 at 12:30 pm

Corrected. Stupid homonyms.


Editor 'n' Chef 04.08.05 at 12:56 pm

King of Fools has a comprehensive listing of almost all the so-called “carnival” roundups.

The best one not on that list is Blawg Review, the carnival of the blawgs by law bloggers.

Timberites and followers of Crooked Timber are all invited to stop by for a visit.


Shelby 04.08.05 at 12:56 pm

“Carnival of the Left” seems appropriate. Though not exactly hip, I guess.


jet 04.08.05 at 1:27 pm

I read the Corpuscle article clean through, and I feel sad. Poor lefty’s, still claiming there is a “Man” to fight against. I understood Corpuscle’s goal to make kids think, but alienating them from ever feeling like they can be part of the government is deeply wrong.

Favorite quote: “Look at the school systems they are inflicting on you. They don’t want you studying the truth in school. They don’t want you learning science, for god’s sake.” HAHAHAHA, yes, “The Man’s” primary plank ‘computers schmuters’


coturnix 04.08.05 at 1:42 pm

Thanks to Donna for the link above. As you can see, there are tons of carnivals (track back to issues 1 and 2 of the meta-carnival to see some dead ones, too – King of Fools has about a half at best), and a number of them are exclusively or predominantly Lefty. Yet the older, more established Carnivals are predominantly Righty.

I think that a big weekly Carnival of Progressives (travelling from blog to blog, if possible), focused on Progressive politics (i.e., not too narrow, as in just economics in Carnival of Un-Capitalists, nor too broad like Blog Tower that covers everything from religion to humor and art), would do well against the predominantly Righty (and better known) carnivals, like the Carnival of Vanities, Best-of-me-symphony, or Carnival of Capitalists.

There are many ways a carnival can be organized. Go to homepages of some of the better carnivals (e.g., Skeptic’s Circle, Tangled Bank, Grand Rounds, History Carnival, Philosopher’s Carnival, or Carnival of the Godless) for ideas of the best ways to run this kind of thing.

And we certainly need a good catchy name. And, as you can see, it does NOT need to contain the word “Carnival” in it.


cntodd 04.08.05 at 2:35 pm

A new lefty blog carnival started last week,

For lefty’s interested in globalization, income disparity, free-trade vs. fair-trade, corporate abuse of the environment, etc.

We had a small response to our first call for submissions. It is up at my blog

We are still excepting submissions for next weeks carnival.


Brett Bellmore 04.08.05 at 4:02 pm

““Carnival of the Reality-Based” seemed kind of lame.”

Somebody on the left finally notices how lame that phrase is? It’s like the phrase, “Democratic People’s Republic”; If you call yourself “reality based”, it probably means you aren’t…


Anthony 04.08.05 at 6:03 pm

Calling it a carnival seems so derivative, like we’re trying to play catch-up to right wingers who seem to have started a carnival trend.

I suggest calling it the Crooked Timber Speaker’s Corner.


Mill 04.08.05 at 6:06 pm

Agreed about the Young Person’s Guide. I think the Corpuscle is an acquired taste.

Also the long article that started off with the usual “when I was a kid, I was a voracious reader!”, I didn’t care enough to finish it. You have to remember that people open these things all at once in tabs.. by the time they get around to a specific post they’ve forgotten your intro, so if the post itself has a boring or uninformative introduction, its chance of being read is small.


ArC 04.08.05 at 10:32 pm

“Grand Guignol of the Sinister”? It’s sorta ironic-cool in a hipster “Hot Topic teenyboppers would think this is actually cool” sense. Or maybe even more meta than that.


King of Fools 04.08.05 at 10:36 pm

I’ve added you guys to my list (will be published on Wed) but right now it is the ‘nameless carnival’ until you give me which of the names above (or not above) you want it to be called.

Shoot me an email with your ‘final answer’. Thanks!


joejoejoe 04.09.05 at 1:42 am

How about “Carnival of Acorns”? Acorns are the start of something big and very much related to timber, crooked or otherwise.


Roger Mexico 04.09.05 at 7:51 am

‘The Counterforce’?


Tim Worstall 04.09.05 at 9:33 am

I like the idea above of Speakers Corner….and I think you should definitely make you “carnival” an institution.

Leaving aside the left/right divide for a moment I run a weekly (Sunday afternoon) Britblog Roundup, where people nominate what they consider to be the best posts (of their own or from other blogs) written by British and Irish bloggers.

The person who’s benefitted most has been me, as I’m introduced to things I would never have found on my own. Sure the process of putting up a 30 or 40 link post is a pain, but more than made up for by having those 30 or so nominators drawing my attention the the new and good stuff out there.

Strongly recommend the experience of running these things. And I’d add that it helps if you ask your readers to nominate stuff that they like, as well as accepting things from the bloggers themselves.


bi 04.10.05 at 1:03 pm

I’m not exactly a leftist, but here’s a URL for you. And here’s the whole thing. Let the link sluttage begin!

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