Sunni's Salon logo
Sunni's Salon Webby Wanderings Graphic

July 2006

Ali's Voice:

Like many pro-freedom individuals, I first encountered Ali Massoud's writing at Strike the Root. I appreciated some articles, but others didn't resonate, and a couple of rants rubbed me the wrong way, so I adopted a somewhat dismissive attitude toward his work. Over the past few months, as I've read more of his stuff, I've realized that was a shortsighted view. At his blog especially, I appreciate the diverse coverage of news and ideas. And he's a practical dreamer too!

Site overview: Basic Blogger setup in a sparse style. Massoud's judicious use of smallish graphics brightens the place considerably without bogging download times. A steady supply of fresh content—usually shorter posts with good outbound links—rewards regular visits. RSS and Atom feeds available; open commenting allows for anonymous posts. I'm glad I gave him another look!

-:- -:- -:-

L. Neil Smith at Random:

When I received the announcement of L. Neil's blog launch, I popped in for a quick look, and wasn't terribly impressed. It looked to me to be little more than a place to repost articles already published elsewhere, most notably The Libertarian Enterprise ... and I didn't see the point. His 'zine publishes letters to the editor, so there's a vibrant feedback system in place and well used. But again, I gave it another look, and was well rewarded. While he does repost material there, Neil also writes fresh material for his blog, and thus far it's sparkled with his singular flair. And the comments, as far as I've seen, are of good caliber as well. Of course that's an intended pun, because if you're going to read anything by Neil, you're going to get lots of firearms-related information. I suspect this site will grow into a source of unexpected treasure.

Site overview: Simple but elegant Word Press blog is easy on the eyes, although the non-black type may be harder for some readers to see. RSS feeds available for new content as well as comments. I haven't commented there, so I'm not sure what the policy might be regarding anonymous commenting, but comments are moderated. A newish blog, how it'll fare remains to be seen, but if Neil can even occasionally share insightful gems like the recent entry A Matter of Definition, it will be good, even if slow to blossom.

-:- -:- -:-

Mutualist Blog:

I have not been simply slow to embrace the left-leaning libertarian movement, I've been reluctant. Skeptical. Unsure of the utility of doing so, when directional labels especially are often used to shut down conversation instead of foster it. And the big ol' anti-capitalism atop Kevin Carson's blog has long left me uneasy. But every time I visit, I end up staying much longer than my schedule allows, and find stimulating essays and comments that strike me as more reasonable than material produced by other pro-freedom writers. Things like Ownership Societies, Fake and Real, or an exploration of corporate management. I suspect that, were I able to delve deeper, or if Kevin and I could have a conversation over a couple of beers some evening, I'd discover that his free-market anti-capitalism is actually more in keeping with my conceptualization of voluntaryism. As it is, I'll have to content myself with sipping from Kevin's stream.

Site overview: Basic brown Blogger setup is probably a little narrow for easy reading, given the length of Carson's typical posts, but it makes it easy to focus on his ideas. Carson often fashions posts around conversations held elsewhere, so there's a fair amount of quoting before he gets to his points—it's a matter of personal preference whether to read it all or do some judicious skipping. Anonymous commenting is available, as is an RSS feed. Not a place to drop in for quick reading, but thought-provoking perspectives carefully laid out make it a great place for exploring ideas, especially ones critical of the USSA's corporcrat structure and culture.

Sunni graphic