29 July 2009

4003 Posts

This blog has been going for a little less than four years and one month. It is still eclectic when it comes to subject matter, although there are common themes.

This blog is primarily policy oriented. I prefer academic and scientific scholarship, government statistics, empirical data, history, facts and personal experience as sources. Not infrequently, I propose responses to policy issues. Sometimes, posts don't squarely address policy issues but provide important context for the larger analysis.

Within this broad outline, my posts are eclectic although not comprehensive. I prefer topics that are not the subject of saturation coverage elsewhere, particularly matters of intrinsic or practical value that are not widely known except by specialists in a field. I have a couple dozen issues that I follow particularly closely, like military procurement, the financial crisis, intellectual property and criminal justice issues. I pay special attention to issues pertinent to Colorado, but most of the time, I discuss issues of more general interest. I avoid issues which present questions of professional ethics for me (generally, conflicts of interest and confidentiality) at the time due to my day job clientele and workload.

This blog is written at a level intended for reasonably well educated people who are not necessarily specialist in the subject matter discussed. Sources are condensed with busy people in mine, not ill educated people.

I usually write posts with paragraphs that convey reader's digest versions of ideas with additional original analysis (instead of mere sentences or sentence fragments with links); sometimes with images but almost never with audio or video elements. This is not a group blog; I write it, and I don't have a copy editor. I correct errors in form, even if I notice them later, only as time permits. I always include a comment option in my posts and moderate comments with a light hand, primarily to remove spam comments unrelated to the post in question. I update my posts irregularly; sometimes in the body text and sometimes in the comments. At other times, I simply let a matter drop even when there are new developments or address it in a new post which may or may not be linked. Tags help connect related posts, but I am not entirely systematic in my tagging practices and didn't tag most of my old posts.

Usually, I favor policy positions that are best described as politically liberal, but I am a technocrat and policy wonk at heart, so my analysis takes me where it leads me given the facts. I write from a secular perspective. I have more libertarian and conservative readers and post links than the vast majority of conventional liberal political blogs, in part because my posts are not always politically orthodox. Expertise and facts trump ideology. I also tackle topics like military procurement at a much higher level of detail than most people in the liberal policy discussion; this issue is one of several that is more frequently discussed by conservatives than by liberals.

Many of the opinions expressed in these posts are idiosyncratic, or do not reflect conventional wisdom (at least among liberals or those in positions of power). I prefer posts that add something to the big discussion to those that merely say what people already know or believe. If I agree with the widely held conventional wisdom on an issue, I am less likely to devote lengthy posts to the issue.

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