Auld Lang Syne

Every year at this time, the newspapers give a recap of the results of the dead pool for the preceding year. I do not feel qualified to deal in such profundities as life and death without the liberal use of scare quotes. Accordingly, here are some of my favorite weblogs that have “died.” Or are “resting.” Or “feeling a little poorly.” If any of the authors of these sites want to point out that they are “not dead yet,” or are “feeling a bit better,” please speak up before the dirt hits your face. Otherwise, I will assume that you have been “nailed to the perch” and have “joined the choir invisible.”

The Dissident Frogman, a rare voice of sanity from the laughing academy that France has become, is missing from our lives. The loss is irreparable. He designs websites and is probably lurking in Samizdata even as we speak. Or write. Or waste time at work. He shows up in the comments of this and other weblogs from time to time. Nevertheless, it would be wonderful to hear his inimiable “ribbit” again.

The Raw Prawn was a business blog with nice graphics and good commentary. It seems to have lapsed when the author moved to another location, but rumor has it that Australia has recently acquired internet access. Perhaps he will avail himself of it.

I wasted nearly a year on Long Island (and believe me, any year on Long Island is wasted) without meeting Michele of A Small Victory. Now I’m back in Massachusetts, and she is only maintaining a photoblog. She mentioned that part of the reason was some ambivalence about the Iraq war. Sorry, but if you don’t feel at least ambivalent about something that makes people dead, you really should see about acquiring a soul.

Right Wing Duck appears to have succumbed to right-wing avian flu. Don’t bother clicking the link – it just leads to one of those sleazy sites that wants to sell you the domain name.

The Dutch Report had a good deal of information about the Netherlands. This was very useful this past year when that country was reacting to the grisly assassination of Theo van Gogh. Some of the writing indicated that the author was not entirely comfortable with English. I hope he will at least continue posting in Dutch, so that the indispensible Zacht Ei (soft-boiled egg, or “softy”) could let us know when something comes up.

Vanished without a trace
Nelson Asher’s Europundits from Brazil;
Amish Tech Support

On “life” support
Bill Whittle has been tapering off. When he does write something, read it. It may not happen very often, though, and seems to be trailing off.
I thought Atlantic Blog was done for, but it seems to have come back. Give William Sjostrom a link, an e-mail, whatever, and help coax him back to life. Sorry, “life.”
Ian Murray didn’t vanish – he graduated.

What did we miss? Please post your keenly-felt losses in the comments.

Update: Kim du Toit was missing for much of the year, but has reappeared with a new site. This was after the mysterious disappearance that elicited this from Mrs. du Toit:

If we could give an explanation we would. Since we can’t, we can’t. It’s sort of the point that we can’t (or we would have). For those who have expressed genuine concern: we’re fine. We’re needing to move to a new chapter in our lives. Our blogs are closed permanently. We’re working to “move” the forum to another guardian/location. We apologize for the suddenness of it and for scaring some folks, but it really could not be helped.

Speculations about black helicopter scenarios and such should be stopped. It is nothing like that.

If there was a way of saying more or giving some sort of explanation, we would, but we can’t.

Thanks to all who played.

Rumors of alien abductions were unfounded.

14 thoughts on “Auld Lang Syne”

  1. I was depressed when it appeared that William Sjostrom had stopped blogging. Insofar as I am able to read blogs, AtlanticBlog had become a must-read (as ChicagoBoyz is, too, of course!). It just about made my day when I found out that he was blogging again.

    Another blog I missed for a while is Le Sabot Post-Moderne. Discoshaman was one of the essential voices blogging the Orange Revolution on the scene.

    As for a blog that appears to be gone, never to return, the one I miss most is Cinderellabloggerfeller. This one has been gone for a while, so perhaps it doesn’t qualify for this years obits. It offered witty and trenchant skewerings of left-wing intellectual commonplaces as well as translations of important articles from Le Monde and Le Figaro, including interviews with Andre Glucksmann and other European intellectuals willing to go against the prevailing fashions. That blogger continued blogging at February 30, but since he started out by saying he wasn’t going to be following political arguments as much, I stopped reading. A piece like this one suggests I should start reading again.

  2. Helen is right – losing the Diplomad was worst of all. We lost him and the frogman within weeks of eachother.

    And how Helen and Rich’s blog wasn’t even nominated for best UK blog ill never know. Its my favorite non US blog out there.

  3. Hmm… Let’s try to see clear through the fog of war…

    First, ‘I feel better! I feel fine! I think I’ll go for a walk!

    Thanks for the praise Mitch, even though it feels a bit weird to read it through what looks like an obituary.

    – The gentlement who comments frequently on Samizdata and signs “Frogman” is not me. It’s a different frogman, and I know next to nothing about him.

    – Bill: sorry, but I don’t post at No Pasaran, and never did (I did lend them my Che Guevara graphic though)

    And finally: the coincidence is really impressive, and could make you believe in alien abductions and all that stuff: check the dissident frogman *now*.

    Mitch, is it a special gift of yours to raise the dead?

  4. He’s back! It’s wonderful! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all! Welcome back, DF! Pour me another, dancing is thirsty work!

  5. Welcome back dissident frogman.

    And many thanks to Badboy Recovered from both Richard and me. Without being pompous (I hope) I want to point out that it is our readers and their reaction that matters, not some spurious competition. Of course, if there were some money at the end of it ….. Dream on.

  6. We also lost Arthur Chrenkoff who had to stop blogging when he got a real job. (The boss objected.) Does anyone know who is covering the Good News from Iraq and Afghanistan that Arthur did so well?

  7. Another missed one is ChomskyPirate, who envisioned Chomsky as a pirate captain. It was very strange, very sparse, and dead these three years now, but contained the best expression of Chomsky’s ideas that I’ve ever seen:

    The first question comes from Anne in Port du Lac du Nous Sommes Saskatchewan.

    I know America is the birthplace of evil. What can they do to straighten up and fly right?

    How do you decide if yer ship is pointing the right direction? You could look at the stars, but they’re mighty far away – specially if you’ve got but one eye. Best instead to look at which way that scum-ship America is pointing and set sail in the opposite direction. For we all know America’s a’headed to ruin.
    So what would happen if America turned around? Well, ruin would turn right around with it!
    So if yer keen on staying true if America turns sail, make sure as to keep an eye on the ever changing compass of correctness: opposition to America.

  8. AtlanticBlog is indeed back in business. I went out of town at the beginning of September, just before a nasty DOS attack, and was unable to fix it on the road. When I got back in October, the problems were too serious for my non-existent computer skills, so I had to bring in an expert. By the time she got things roughly working, it was well into November. Sigh. That, plus a new baby, has slowed me down a bit, but I am trying to get back up to speed. Still can’t get comments working, though.
    Glad to know I was missed.

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