2005 Weblog Awards Endorsements

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As I mentioned voting for the 2005 Weblog Awards begins tomorrow. Vote early and vote often!

Honestly, except for bragging rights the Awards are pretty small potatoes. And even the bragging rights are only important in a pretty rarified crowd. But limited as they are they’re a way of rewarding excellence. What’s “excellence”? It’s whatever you think it is, of course. And the best way that you can insure that your own personal notion of excellence is, in fact, honored is by voting.

In some categories I’m not familiar with any of the finalists so I can’t make an informed endorsement. Lots of the finalists are blogs I visit every single day. I plan on visiting every finalist with which I’m not familiar so I can form some kind of impression. Here are the blogs I do plan on voting for:

Best Blog

The finalists in this category include some of the blogosphere’s power-hitters and I read every single one of them each and every day. I was sorry that the finalists in this category were, by and large, so partisan. Boing Boing is pretty non-partisan—it’s largely although not exclusively a tech blog.

And then there’s Instapundit. Although some classify it as a right-wing blog, I’d say it was libertarian-leaning and very weakly partisan. Glenn’s blog is one of the indispensables. If there were no Instapundit, we’d be forced to invent one. I stand in awe of Glenn’s work ethic. However, I don’t honestly that Instapundit has been the best blog in the blogosphere this year.

I have genuinely agonized over this category and considered not endorsing any of them but I’ve decided to endorse Ed Morrisey’s Captain’s Quarters. CQ is a little too reliably partisan Republican to be entirely to my taste. But Captain Ed’s work in exposing corruption in the Martin government in Canada has helped to change the world for the better this year and that’s a lot for a humble blogger. He didn’t do it by hard-hitting analysis or clever research (although there was plenty of both). He did it mostly by being there—by making Captain’s Quarters a clearing-house where Canadians could get the inside scoop that their government’s censorship was able to keep under wraps. That’s worth an endorsement.

Best Blog: Captain’s Quarters

Best New Blog

Alexandra von Maltzen’s All Things Beautiful’s unique juxtaposition of fine art (frequently judiciously and skillfully Photoshopped) and commentary has created a distinctive niche in the blogosphere.

Best New Blog: All Things Beautiful

Best Group Blog

Blog-father Joe Katzman’s Winds of Change has continued its high level of political and foreign policy commentary with what is unquestionably the finest, most civil comments section in the blogosphere (which I envy). Its regular features including Winds of War, New Energy Current, and Hatewatch Briefing are all must-reads.

Best Group Blog: Winds of Change

Best Humor/Comic Blog

My pick in this category is Beautiful Atrocities. Jeff is one of the cleverest, rudest, funniest guys in the blogosphere.

Best Humor/Comic Blog: Beautiful Atrocities

Best Liberal Blog

I find Matthew Yglesias to be one of the most thoughtful, fairest, and most interesting bloggers on the left side of the blogosphere. It was a hard choice between him and Kevin Drum but I’m going for MY.

Best Liberal Blog: Matthew Yglesias

Best Conservative Blog

Fellow Watcher’s Council member Rick Moran is one of the finest essayists in the blogosphere. ‘Nuff said.

Best Conservative Blog: Right Wing Nut House

Best Media/Journalist Blog

Michael Yon is the Ernie Pyle of the Iraq War. His dispatches from Iraq should be must-reading for everyone.

Best Media/Journalist Blog: Michael Yon

Best Culture/Gossip Blog

This was a difficult choice since so many of my favorite blogs are finalists in the category. Daily reads for me here include Spirit Fingers, Go Fug Yourself, The Llama Butchers, Manolo’s Shoe Blog, and The Superficial. A tough call. I’m going with Steve and Robbo. I relish their combination of fine arts, music, pop culture, political and social commentary, and zaniness. And comely French newsreaders.

Best Culture/Gossip Blog: The Llama Butchers

Best Blog Design

The design of Coming Anarchy is attractive, witty, and highly consistent with the content and tone of the blog.

Best Blog Design: Coming Anarchy

Best Law Blog

Another extremely competitive category. I think that SCOTUSBlog is performing a real public service.

Best Law Blog: SCOTUSBlog

Best Business Blog

In this category I’m going for James Hamilton’s Econbrowser. His expertise as an oil economist is very timely and helpful.

Best Business Blog: Econbrowser

Best European Blog

A Fistful of Euros provides consistently sensible commentary on European politics and economics. Their posts on countries other than Germany and France are particularly helpful.

Best European Blog: A Fistful of Euros

Best Asian Blog

In this category I’m going for Simon World, one of the most reliable resources for China commentary.

Best Asian Blog: Simon World

Best Australian or New Zealand Blog

Silent Running’s war-gaming of a terrorist attack earlier this year was one of the most ambitious undertakings in the blogosphere last year and puts them in a class of their own.

Best Australian or New Zealand Blog: Silent Running

Best Latino, Carribean, or South American Blog

Another tough call. I’m going for Val Prieto’s Babalu Blog. His coverage of the hurricane was fabulous. And, as always, he keeps his eye on the Castro regime in Cuba. I wish he’d post more recipes. 😉

Best Latino, Carribean, or South American Blog: Babalu

Best of the Top 250

This is category of the greybacks of the blogosphere. I’m going for my friend and colleague Dean Esmay’s Dean’s World. Dean is one of the true princes of the blogosphere. His blog is always interesting, timely, and varied and he maintains a vibrant and, for the most part, cordial comments section.

Best of the Top 250: Dean’s World

Best of the Top 501 – 1000

In this category I’m casting my support behind Jack Grant’s Random Fate. Jack’s thoughtful commentary and sensible opinion is one of the voices of sanity in the blogosphere. His coverage of the riots in France this fall was excellent and informative.

Best of the Top 501 – 1000: Random Fate

Best of the Top 1001 – 1750

This is a highly competitive category with many excellent blogs in competition. Please vote for The Glittering Eye.

Best of the Top 1001 – 1750: The Glittering Eye

Best of the Top 1751 – 2500

Blog-friend Mark Safranski is trying to raise the level of discourse in the blogosphere with serious commentary and solid scholarship. His recent seminar on globalization and war was a genuine contribution. I’m supporting ZenPundit in this category.

Best of the Top 1751 – 2500: ZenPundit

Best of the Top 2501 – 3500

In this category I’m supporting Different River for his economic, political, and social commentary.

Best of the Top 2501 – 3500: Different River

4 comments… add one
  • What a sweetheart you are to make such a wonderful compliment. Thank you.
    And how graceous of you to write a post about all of us.

    By the way, make your finalist logo interactive and lead it to your voting page. If you are not sure how, send me an email.

    Best regards, and the best of luck….

  • Thanks for the endorsement – I’ll certainly return the favour.

  • You’re welcome, Alexandra. And thanks for the offer. It’s a good suggestion. That’s what the Weblogs logo in the post itself was supposed to do (I had a typo which I’ve corrected) but allowing a click on the logo in the sidebar is a good idea, too. I’ve also added the alt (for IE) and title attributes (for HTML-compliant browsers) so that an instruction shows up on mouseover.

  • Robert Conger Link

    I read your comments about Rick Moran being “one of the finest essayists” on the Web, so I read a few of his outbursts, and I fail to see the truth of your comment. One thing of significance on in reading his stuff can be found in his essay about Tom Shu. He wrote that “While the left obsesses over the bathroom antics of a relatively obscure Idaho senator” they paid no attention to the “scandal” of Tom Shu and his contributions to Democrats.

    First of all, the only people I noticed “obsessing” over Senator Craig were other Republicans. Running like rats for cover under the “morality” issue they love so much, Republicans, including Senator McCain, called for Craig’s resignation. “The left,” if there is one, just shrugged their shoulders and rolled their eyes over yet another Republican hypocrite.

    It is the hallmark of a sleazy propagandist to intensify the stink of his deception with a lot of rotting red herrings, and that is what Mr. Moran does again and again. It’s typical of conservatives that they either lie, or omit any inconvenient facts, and that they use every logical fallacy and propaganda trick in the book to make up for the fact that they are most often simply dead wrong.

    I would say that while the right obsesses over what Bill Clinton did with his dick, or how much Ted Kennedy may drink, they ignore entirely the lies of George Bush, the crimes of Karl Rove and Dick Cheney, and the general attack on American liberty and values that today’s extremist Republicans have been carrying out, egged on by people like Rick Moran.

    Tom Shu is not an issue. The candidates returned his money. Did Bush ever return any money he got from the Saudi royal family — or for that matter, from the bin-Ladens? From Enron? Did a rich Texan have any qualms about using his money to set up a gang of liars and smear-artists to attack John Kerry? No. The right has no morality, no scruples, and when it start ranting about what is right or wrong, it has no credibility.

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