I’ve been thinking about what I get out of this whole exercise, and is it just a tooling around waste of time. I’ve come to the conclusion is that its not.
So what do I actually get out of blogging, including participating on other blogs which I have been doing for much longer? I would list the main things as
- Information. I must say I’ve learnt lots about areas of politics and economics that I would not have come to grips with otherwise. The blogs I would think I have learnt most from are in order Catallaxy, Larvatus Prodeo, John Quiggin and Club Troppo. Catallaxy tops the list because while being highly rational it comes from a slightly different angle than my political background and contained the greatest scope to learn from.
- The value of argument. Engaging in or even watching arguments is a great way for exploring all aspects of a debate. At times I’ve engaged in a much stronger position that I really believed in, but the value of this being it makes people explore a full range of issues. Certainly I try to (as much as possible) come to things with an open mind that can be swayed by good opposing arguments. A particularly nice aspect of blogs is that it can draw in people from everywhere and with a wide range of expertise.
- Writing practice. I would like to be able to write better, clearer, more flowing English but I’m not going to achieve this by not doing anything. Exposing things publicly is a great way to force yourself to try.
- To get my ideas more clearly formulated. In my opinion nothing lets you think more clearly about something than writing it down to force you to clearly formulate what you think, and then exposing the idea to public scrutiny so it can have holes shot in it if necessary.
That’s the main things anyway I won’t mention self-aggrandisement. Obviously the reason for this post falls mostly into the last (numbered) category.