Dear Reader

by Russ Roberts on February 10, 2010

in Weblogs

I am tired of Muirgeo and Daniel Kuehn monopolizing the discussion in the comments. So are some of our readers.

Do not respond to them when they are off topic or use the comments section to essentially run their own blog using our bandwidth.

We have never censored comments other than a handful of vulgar comments. We do not censor comments because that disagree with us. That remains our policy. But.

I recently posted on the inconsistency of Obama’s health care goals. In the second comment, Muirgeo attacks Sarah Palin. This is off-subject. If Muirgeo had a blog, he could indulge in his fascinating opinions of Sarah Palin. Similarly, Daniel Kuehn usually posts in the first two or three comments giving his fascinating assessment of our posts. Some he grudgingly agrees with. Most he disagrees with. Daniel is welcome to his opinion. But simply stating his opinion and hijacking the entire thread is tiresome and not productive.

In many posts, Daniel has half of the comments. Muirgeo has been quieter lately but that has been common with his behavior in the past.

This discourages thoughtful dialogue.

But we value thoughtful disagreement. I recently received a private email wondering why Obama couldn’t cut health care costs and expand coverage given that the rest of the world seems to manage it. That’s a good question. It belongs in our comment section. Sarah Palin’s abilities do not belong in our comment section. Daniel and Muirgeo make an important contribution by challenging us from time to time. But they can’t seem to stick to that in a productive way and many of you have trouble leaving them alone.

So I am asking those of you who disagree with us to keep to the topic and not pontificate on what you agree with or disagree with. Start your own blog if you want to do that. That’s what blogs are for. Comments are for discussion. Or at least that’s what I’d liked the comments here to be about.

And I am asking those of disagree with Muirgeo and DK to ignore their childish tangents or pontifications. When they have something thoughtful to say, engage them. Otherwise, please ignore them.

I have not run this by Don. He may or may not agree. I’ll let him add his two cents in his own post if he wants to.

I have closed comments for this post. Sometimes that doesn’t always work. I will delete any comments that get through. If you want to react, send me a private email.

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