Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
August 17, 2007
BASEBALL/POLITICS: You Must Not Read the Sports Pages Too Often

Posted by Dr. Manhattan

Ross Douthat is exactly right. I have seen variations of Brad DeLong's complaint over the years, and every time it only makes me wonder whether the complainer has ever read the sports pages.

I wrote about some related topics on my own blog a long time ago (a piece much of which, ahem, has been massively overtaken by events). One item that still holds up is the common creation myth of the Bill James revolution and the blogosphere generally - the outsiders rising up against the hidebound (baseball/political/media) establishment and changing the game. This paradigm applies equally to the liberal blogosphere that arose after I wrote my piece and the conservative blogosphere from the heady days of early 2003. There is a reason that Benjamin Wallace-Wells, in profiling Markos Moulitsas for the Washington Monthly, compared Moulitsas to Bill James.

Posted by Mike Rogers at 1:20 AM | Politics 2007 | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)


What is really scary is watching ex-jocks turned "journalists" or "analysts" for whom simple logic is foreign. Just because Tom Jackson was a great player doesn't mean he won't butcher logic. So we get so-called analysis like "teams that run more than X times per game win most of the time, so the reason that the Eagles lost was because they didn't run the ball enough".

On the general topic -- the general incompetence of journalists -- our frustration stems from:

1) their gullibility ("the senator's proposal will insure that every person has a good job and eliminate war")
2) their lack of what most would think of as general knowledge (e.g. the difference b/w a fired round and an unfired round or basic history or economics)
3) their lack of curiosity

We get frustrated with their incompetence. Their corruption (i.e. deliberate propaganda) produces a reaction much stronger than frustration.

Posted by: stan at August 17, 2007 12:42 PM
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