In praise of Slate

I would be willing to bet that the all the Link Roundup’s I’ve done have contained at least one link to Slate Magazine. There’s a reason for that. It’s a top-notch internet site. I used to read Salon and NY Times editorial page, but they felt they weren’t milking the browsers for enough $ and implemented either a premium service or bogged down access with mandatory adverts. Slate abstained from that kind of thing, though they certainly are the caliber to warrant such a move.

One thing that differentiates the site from the others mentioned is that it’s not completely left. Half the time, when attempting to find an intriguing Friedman globalization essay, I’d run into a Bob Herbert Bash Bush Essay. Please. I’ve read that essay a thousand times. Salon works the same way – you get the lunatic feminazi lib interviews and such. It gets old.

Slate, on the other hand, is pretty moderate. They publish Hitchens, for christ-sake (if you want to read an intelligent conservative, complete with top-notching fighting-stance vitriol, give him a spin). In a way, I’d say their stance is libertarian. Wonderful.

Their viewpoint is both worldly and rounded. They bring on layman and experts to contribute, adopting the “blog” style of journalism without the mindless filler and editorial abstinence. I’m sure there are still editors somewhere behind the scenes, but because the magazine lives digitally, said guardians of publication do not arbitrate upon measures of length, style, appropriateness, etc – merit is their sole criterion.

Anyway, enough stroking of that shaft. Impetus is these two articles, on biking. I’ve done my share of cycling, in fact it’s my preferred method of burning calories. But the concept – replacing that internal combustion engine for an A-frame – intimidating on the onset, in a way appropriate.

Strangely, bicycles were invented around the same time as the internal combustion engine. Twin brothers of engineering. The oddity – one could be so ingeniously fluid, elegant, natural – the other, a hog of exploitation and dirty work. Not surprising which device won out.

Show Comments