A very long, very interesting piece of analysis from Alex Massie. A snippet:
Atrios (Duncan Black) for instance, is a tabloid columnist manque. He has exactly the right combination of spite, sneering and bullying for the job. It's ferociously partisan and bracingly, gratuitously unfair, mean-spirited, sexist, wearisome, entertaining, etc etc. That's why his blog is gripping. In other words: it works. If you were to put a British tabloid in Washington, Atrios would be right at home on its op-ed pages (and his presence would add greatly to the gaiety of the nation). His "Wanker of the Day" feature is a stylistic flourish that would be right at home on the pages of Britain's best-selling newspapers. It's also easy to imagine the Firedoglake collective on the pages of a British mid-market tabloid.
Read it all.
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Ross Douthat is a former contributing editor at The Atlantic.