The death of CSPT

I am closing down CSPT. It has become nothing but a meat-grinder for political animosities which have turned into personal animosities. I really don’t like the idea of having to restrict commenters, but not having done so has become an experiment which is simply failing. I can understand that the Phoenician is simply an ass, but when Perry and Hube can’t get along, maybe a totally free speech site simply cannot work. The image that crosses my mind is a bar on the border between two ethnic neighborhoods where the people just don’t like each other: the clientele keeps shrinking, and fights break out constantly.

We’ve lost Sharon, we’ve lost Eric, we’ve lost the Grey Ghost, we’ve lost AOTC, we’ve lost dozens of regulars, other bloggers like Sister Toldjah have stopped visiting and linking, and the site has stopped growing. We have the same few commenters visiting all the time, but virtually no new ones, save for aphrael’s return.

I’ll continue to post on John Hitchcock’s Truth Before Dishonor, though certainly not to the extent that it would look like I’m trying to take over the site. Perry’s Bridging the Gap, which is piggy-backed onto my bandwidth, will remain open.

When I asked several people about this action, in an e-mail, Donald Douglas replied, “Close it down only if it’s not fun for you, Dana.” Well, that pretty much hits the nail on the head: it’s just not much fun anymore.

The comments section for this death notice will remain open for a couple of days, but the comments sections on the other posts will be getting closed down. As of right now, the site remains available, though I have not yet decided whether I will close down the archives as well.


  1. This is one more symptom of the polarization and deterioration we are seeing in our country. It is a crying shame, because you have put a tremendous amount of effort into your blog, Dana, and you are a reasonable person. Why not consider a temporary shut-down, to see where you are with it in a couple of months, like after Christmas and into the new year? I do appreciate very much your allowing me to share some of your bandwidth with Bridging the Gap, to which I will now be able to focus more attention.

  2. I’m sorry to see you go; I’ve enjoyed being able to wander in and out over the years and feel like there was always a conversation to be had. It’s very much like a good neighborhood pub in that regard, and it will be missed.

    On the other hand, if it’s not fun, it’s not fun, and it’s better to pull the plug before ‘not fun’ turns to ‘despise and hate’.


    I will, however, miss ya’ll, and hope that our paths cross again.

    I would suggest, also, that it would be a mistake to close down the archives; even if there’s no more conversation to be had, a record, a memory of what was, is worth preserving.

  3. Sad. Always enjoyed getting your perspective on things, even if I didn’t agree with it most of the time.

    There once was a blogger named Dana
    Right-winger from East Pennsylvania
    His writing was smart
    But he had to depart
    So no more will he entertain ya.

    OK, the Limerick Avenger I ain’t.

  4. Dana: Don’t kill it. Put it in suspended animation and step away from it for a couple of months. If you still feel this way, then pull the plug. But you might also find that all you needed was a hiatus to recharge.


  5. Well, you tried laying down the law earlier regarding civility.

    Too bad (i) it didn’t take with some commentators and (ii) you were unwilling to enforce itr against those commentators. You can probably drw a parallel between that episode and the US financial crisis.

  6. Dana, you are right that I’ve been gone from this site for several months. There were a number of reasins for this, but the main reason was the atmosphere here was becoming downright claustrophobic. As the number of regulars kept shrinking, the end result was the same old arguments being repeated endlessly among what amounted to a handful of diehards. With no fresh, outside blood at all to contribute fresh perspectives, the intellectual and philosophical air eventually became stale and stifling. And thus bereft of stimulating ideas and discussions, the “Debate” increasingly trended toward personal animosities instead. In short, it eventually became much more of a hassle than a pleasure.

    It was fun while it lasted, you gave it your best, but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be. RIP, CSPT.

  7. Holy crap. I go to New York for a day and all hell breaks loose. Imagine my supprise when I get my morning coffee, open my email and find twenty or so messages about CSPT closing. What the?????

    So I’ve read your post over and over Dana, along with your email. I’ve read the other commentators replys that were forwarded to me. I can only contribute this: from a business aspect if it ain’t working change the business plan and yes, maybe even the name.

    I believe your operative sentence to be; ” I can understand that the Phoenician is simply an ass, but when Perry and Hube can’t get along, maybe a totally free speech site simply cannot work.”

    Or perhaps you should have stepped in with Perry and Hube sooner and in private. Perhaps a blog site is not the place to air personal grudges and should not be tolerated. Perhaps when posters find it hard to post without name calling and show a general contempt for anyone who leaves the plantation it’s time to block those posters. Or maybe, just maybe there’s no such thing as “totally free speech”. Perhaps there is a “price” for speech that up till now you didn’t realize must be paid.

    I believe the idea of Free Speech is to protect you, me, Pho, Perry, Hube etc. from the Government closing down our speech. It has no bearing on YOUR private site. You can regulate anything you feel is inappropriate. That’s not stopping free speech, that’s civilizing the heard.

    CSPT is your baby and you can do with it whatever you wish. Perhaps the time has come for a rebirth, but only if you’ve learned something here. If you decide to be born again, then rise like a Phoenix and start with a clean slate.

  8. Pingback: CSPT has closed « Truth Before Dishonor

  9. Dana,
    I mourn the loss of CSPT, but I have to agree with Eric. Honestly, the site became boring. A couple of days ago, I checked in and there was an argument about Bush v. Gore. Really? At what point do we stop having the same arguments about events that cannot be changed anyway?

    I’m still passionate about politics and most of that I leave with short comments on Facebook, which took the place of blogging for me. Real life takes up enough of my time these days that I do not have the time or energy for blogging, and the totally predictable arguments that broke out here made it uninviting.

    I applaud your efforts to keep this going, Dana. I hope you enjoy blogging on John’s site and that that site will grow and grow.

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