Out of the Daily Ditch

In a note to his readers Andrew Sullivan has declared that he is packing it in. Having written for one iteration or another of The Daily Dish for 15 years, he says he’s had enough. (It appears that the current iteration of his site is just The Dish.) Sullivan didn’t put a date certain on the retirement of his site — he put it “in the near future” — but I think it’s fair to take his announcement at face value. He seems to have hung it up.

Glenn Reynolds responds (his caps): “IN JOHN CARTER’S WORDS, I STILL LIVE.” Glenn also thinks he’ll be back; Kathy Shaidle fears he might not go away. Pejman Yousefzadeh comments here. Ed Driscoll has more here, John Nolte here.

Sullivan was one of the pioneers of the blog form. Chris Cillizza reflects on what Sullivan’s retirement of The Daily Dish may or may not mean regarding the future of the form.

Once upon a time, Sullivan’s site was worth reading. That time has long since passed. The news that Sullivan was putting his site out to pasture came as a surprise to me only because I was unaware he was still cranking it out.

Sullivan has become a crude and hysterical polemicist. Several years ago I dubbed his site The Daily Ditch. He descended into madness and self-parody, and not just in the case of Sarah Palin. Before there was Sarah Palin, there was George W. Bush. Bush sent Sullivan around the bend.

Sullivan found his perfect reader in Barack Obama. President Obama drew on the deep well of Sullivan’s ignorance in his first press conference:

I was struck by an article that I was reading the other day talking about the fact that the British during World War II, when London was being bombed to smithereens, had 200 or so detainees. And Churchill said, “We don’t torture,” when the entire British–all of the British people–were being subjected to unimaginable risk and threat….the reason was that Churchill understood — you start taking shortcuts, over time, that corrodes what’s best in a people. It corrodes the character of a country.

This is laughable, as I sought to demonstrate in “Obama veers into the Daily Ditch.” The Daily Ditch may be gone, but Obama remains mired in it.


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