Friday, September 21, 2012

Last orders at The Devil's Kitchen

As regular readers might have noticed, your humble Devil has been struggling to comment on politics for some time—the last couple of years, really.

A number of factors have contributed to this: the loss of anonymity has, though my choice, has made a difference, of course; as has the fact that there are only so many times that one can write the same thing over and over again.

Further, when your humble Devil started blogging, those of us who were of different political opinions still adhered to certain standards of evidence and honesty: that sense of brotherhood has disappeared with the introduction of the financially-backed party political sites.

This has accompanied the ever-accelerating disappearance of those bloggers whom I considered a daily read: not because I agreed with them, but because they made me think, and they made me laugh.

Most importantly, unlike when The Kitchen first opened, I am actually happy in my personal life—I have a fantastic wife and a job that I love.

And it is this last item that has led to this final announcement: I now spend most of my life involved in my work, building and creating things that make people's lives better.

Shortly, I am to take an enhanced and, possibly (at some point), more public role in the business. This is, I feel, incompatible with maintaining The Kitchen—especially given the way that I feel about politics and political blogging anyway.

As such, I am giving my loyal army—of readers, contributors, enemies, political foils and brothers in arms—notice that, in the next couple of weeks, this blog will be retired. Initially I shall put it behind a login and then, after taking a back-up, I shall (probably) delete it.

The Devil's Kitchen has been running since January 13th 2005: in that time, there have been 6,005 posts; 3,776,324 page loads and 3,089,579 unique visits—with my best day (when I published a post assessing the state of the code released during ClimateGate) amassing 24,598 unique visits in just 24 hours.

I think that I can claim the rather more dubious accolade of coining—and embodying—the word "swearblogging".

I am also pleased that the phrase and concept of "fake charities" has also entered the blogging lexicon—not least through my setting up of the site that enabled people to check whether such organisations take government money. I hope to be able to upgrade and refine that resource soon.

Quite apart from the fact that the catharsis which The Kitchen enabled—and which kept me going through some very dark days—I have also met some incredibly nice people through this blogging lark, many of whom I have had great fun with, and who I hope that I shall continue to see.

However, despite all of this, I have felt for some time that politics is an utterly futile endeavour. For the last few years, I have found that my work has allowed me to make a real difference to people's lives (not least my own) in a way that politics—let alone the libertarian position that I occupy—can never do.

Remember, politicians only ever make your life harder—they never make it better, or easier: you have to do that for yourself. And I have found that this positivity is far more healthy and rewarding than wallowing in the stye of negativity and managed decline that is the political arena.

And so, for all of the reasons above, The Kitchen will close within the next couple of weeks. And for good this time.

I shall maintain my online presence through my portfolio site (and I might even update it occasionally!). I shall even still Tweet occasionally about politics. I am also (for those who are interested) pretty active, experimenting with interesting CSS, over at CodePen.

It is my intention, too, to start up a new blog: this will be concerned with technology, software development, management, the exciting developments in HTML5 and CSS3, and the web in general: those who might find such a thing interesting can drop me a line, and I shall let you know when it's up and running.

Until then, thank you—all of you: readers, writers, friends, enemies, colleagues and acquaintances. I have had so many opportunities that I never would have had without all of you. I have had the chance to meet some of the politicos that I excoriate, and the researchers who I slag off; I have had the chance to influence policy, and to drink enormous quantities of free booze. I have partaken of bad tempered political arguments, and still been stood a round; I have met people, both interesting and articulate, who made me very welcome in London when I moved from Edinburgh.

So, until we meet again, farewell to all my friends and enemies—it's been a blast!

UPDATE: thanks to all of you who have left comments, sent messages, etc. I am particularly delighted that I was able to introduce so many people to libertarianism: since I discovered that philosophy through the blogs of others, I am happy that I have been able to, as it were, pay it forward...

69 comments:

Rob F said...

You'll be missed, DK.

I think it was you who taught me the words 'fucknozzle' and 'cocksocket'. Those two ought to go into the OED!

Good luck in the future, and best wishes to you and Bella.

Angry Exile said...

Sad to hear the end of the DK blog but I can understand it. Thanks for the entertaining, informative and thought provoking posts over the years. Good luck for the future.

Richard Carey said...

Fair enough, man. You've certainly done your fair share and more. Life moves on and all that.

However, we cannot afford to opt out of politics, no matter how futile it seems. When good people do so, fools and knaves rush in, and fuck everything up.

Hopefully our paths will cross, at the libertarian drink-up in Southwark or some such affair.

Lynne at Counting Cats said...

The end of a blogging legend. How sad.

You have both entertained and informed me over the years and now it is time for you to leave. I wish you and Bella well in all your endeavours.

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

All political carers end in failure, yours was just shorter than most. However, you will gain your health, which is far more important.

Thanks

Captain Ranty said...

Best wishes from me too.

Your blog was one of those that inspired me to start my own in 2008.

Like you, I have recently thrown in the towel, for much the same reason.

Stay well,

CR.

Thomas Hobbes said...

All the best DK. Like you I've come to the realisation that the only rational response to a rigged game is to refuse to play it. I'm far happier as a result.

JuliaM said...

Best wishes for the future, and you'll be missed. Not many blogging titans left :(

Not a sheep said...

You will be much missed. I always your blog a refreshing read and a much needed change from the majority of c**p on the internet.

One line of yours struck a chord with me - 'as has the fact that there are only so many times that one can write the same thing over and over again' - this is something that has increasingly been bugging me about my blog. Maybe I will be following you through the door marked 'Exit'

View from the Solent said...

Sad to see you go, but pleased that you have found happiness in life. May it last as long as you do.

(but keep a few sharpened cockroaches handy, just in case you see a need for them)

Henry Crun said...

Travel well, young man. Sad to see you go but as you are moving on to bigger and better things I wish you all of the best.

One more thing, don't let tha bastards get you down.

Anonymous said...

Devil

Good luck & good bye

Its been a load of fun

Yours aye

The blogger formally known as Mr Free Market

Farenheit211 said...

Devil, it was reading your site which led me to become involved in anti jihad blogging. Your pieces have kept me interested even when I have disgreed. You will be missed you have been an asset and an inspiration at least to me.

Anonymous said...

Good man!! (or woman??)

Enjoyed your clear headed articles.

Miss you.

Katabasis said...

Best of luck mate - its been a blast and I hope to continue bumping into you in person.

I can't tell you how liberating it was to come across someone blogging who was just as angry as I was and expressed it in such entertaining terms.

I hope fakecharities still continues - it could grow into a very useful resource.

See you again soon IRL hopefully...

Dick Puddlecote said...

Very sad to hear, DK. Your place was my first landing spot in the blogosphere and your writing was so exceptional I just kept coming back.

Best of luck with your future endeavours, perhaps I'll bump into you uptown sometime and we can share a beer or several. :)

Woman on a Raft said...

Sorry to hear that but very glad that your much-deserved career has taken off.

NielsR said...

It's been a pleasure following this blog for the past few years. Good luck, and cheers.

Tim J said...

Sad to hear, but not entirely unexpected. The steam's rather gone out of the blogging lark - the result of people doing it for money and/or advancement rather than fun.

Still, a nice phase of life to look back on...

BenefitScroungingScum said...

The end of an era! Best of luck to you & Bella, BG

Steve Perrett said...

Well it's been a pleasure for me to read your rants over the years Devil! I shall miss your witterings tremendously! I have quoted you on many, many occasions, and I shall now delve quickly into the archives to save some of your more 'eloquent' and relevent quotes! I wish you and your wife the very best that life has to offer! It's a shame I never got to meet youin person, it would have been nice to buy you a beer but! You can't have everything in life!

Thank you.

Henry North London 2.0 said...

Oh dear I knew something had died when I woke up this morning. I had not expected it to be this blog.

I blog very infrequently now but the whole blog is still available.

Leave it up Does it matter? Or bookbind it.

Henry North 2.0

stevie said...

What they said..... And more. There is a great lack of entertaining political blogging with which I agree. Shame. I will miss your sharp AND entertaining rantings. Still - at least I know Im not alone when I start my rantings down the boozer and all the sheeples look at me as if I am some kind of space alien. Meep.

Fat Jacques said...

Sorry you have decided to end this blog. It has been my first destination in the blogosphere for a long time.

While I have been a Libertarian for a very long time, I didn't know the name for it, or that there were others who feel the same way. until I met you; on the web and in a pub.

I fully understand why you are moving on to a more grown up and more contented life.
All the best to you and the lovely Bella, I hope to bump into you in a pub again sometime soon.

Andy said...

All the best for your future endevours, hopefully see you down the pub soon.

Andy

Pete (formerly) in Dunbar said...

Sorry to hear it, but not surprised. Should you ever decide to return to political blogging, you can at least be assured that there is a seemingly inexhaustible supply of duplicitous, thieving scumbags in positions of power - the one resource no country is without.

Should you ever be in NZ drop me a line. The beer isn't all bad :-)

Best wishes for the future and thanks for all the insights and entertainment.

Anonymous said...

Your musings have been missed here since the 'knife' days DK. But i'm very glad you have found personal happiness and peace.

CC Truckston said...

Sad that I won't have DK to read when I'm desperately trying to avoid working, particularly now that I've had the pleasure to hang out with the Devil himself for a couple of weeks. But your reasons for going dark are sound, and you know I wish y'all well. Long live the Devil!

Tony said...

This was a great blog, shame to see it go.

Why not continue it but with guest bloggers??

All the best for the future.

Sackerson said...

Let us hope this is a Sinatra farewell, DK.

Anonymous said...

What can one say, he led and we followed, albeit without the panache or the ability to make swearing so fucking funny. Chris you are an inspiration, well done and thank you so very much!

A Connor

Dick the Prick said...

All the best dude

blingmun said...

Sorry to see you go and best of luck with everything.

Is there any chance of persuading you not to delete the blog? There's loads of great content worth referring to and there must be thousands of other blogs linking back to Devil's Kitchen. It would be a shame for all those links to be dead.

Span Ows said...

You've been in my favourites (links) for years. Good luck and best wishes.

Devil's Kitchen said...

blingmun,

"Is there any chance of persuading you not to delete the blog? There's loads of great content worth referring to and there must be thousands of other blogs linking back to Devil's Kitchen. It would be a shame for all those links to be dead."

The real trigger for this is the work connection: it is unlikely to be an issue for a couple of years yet, so The Kitchen will probably hang around for a little while yet.

As for the rest of you, thank you for your comments: it really has been a pleasure...

Regards,

DK

john in cheshire said...

Best wishes for the future.

Anonymous said...

Shame, your blog is one of the reasons I shrugged off the leftist philosophy I had developed in my teenage years.
Good luck.

the a&e charge nurse said...

'Is there any chance of persuading you not to delete the blog?' - seconded - some posts while controversial, are still representative of a broader political philosophy, it would be a shame to remove these reference points and discussions they led to.

Either way very best wishes with whatever creative, and intellectual activities you pursue.

Jeff Wood said...

It would be churlish not to say thanks before you go.

I think it was a completely non-political blog which pointed the way her; and it was a pleasure, first to find someone articulating what I was beginning to feel and second, to discover so many of you youngsters are so intelligent and clear-minded about it.

If the mess can be cleared up, you young folk will have to do it. These days I feel too bloody old. Best of luck.

The Nameless Libertarian said...

As a great man once said "everything has its time, and everything ends." Yep, it was the Doctor who said that.

But it still stands, and when the time has come to move on, it is best not to fight it and instead move on to what the future holds.

Thanks for the encouragement with my own blog, the chance to write here, the occasional binge drinking sessions and for fixing my MacBook a few years back.

I'll raise a dram to the Kitchen tonight.

John

Snotrocket said...

Apologies if a duplicate post....Chrome session was interrupted....

In the spirit in which I first found your blog all those years ago: Fuck it!!

I have enjoyed so many of the (for instance) climate change fisks that I have saved many of them to disk. They were, as a very good American friend used to say, 'fuckin' A'.

So, best of luck for the future. Take some time to enjoy your wonderful wife and do some living and thinking. Then, you might want to come back as a commenter (at least) on someone else's blog and continue the fight against the global warming fanatics.

I'm just glad I was able to say I read your blog - and sometimes commented at it.

All the best! Fuck it!

Swiss Bob said...

Good luck for the future and thanks for the laughs.

Will not forget the day we crashed Millbank :-)

Longrider said...

TNL - and there was me thinking it came from Ecclesiastes ;)

All I can do is add my voice to the others here. All the best for the future and all that.

RichardT said...

The end of an era.

We only met a couple of times, but very sorry to see you go and thank you for some excellent posts over the years.

tomrat said...

Many thanks Chris,

Yours was the second ever blog I remember reading (hilariously, as I recall, via a link from NHS Blog Doctor when he was still kicking around) and who first gave voice to my own philosophy of freedom.

My guess there will always be a need for educated, thoughtful commentary on matters political and that to this end guest postings to other sites who have picked up the torch would be most welcome.

Guido Fawkes said...

You made me laugh and choke at times. Don't be a stranger.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Thanks Guido: you'll still see me hanging about from time to time—after all, we haven't been on a really dedicated bender for some time...

And, once again, thanks to everyone for their kind words...

DK

Anonymous said...

I've been a regular lurker for a few years. Thanks for all you've done, and best wishes for the future.

Martin A said...

Very sad to lose your thoughts.

I learnt a lot from you and it has been an adventure watching the libertarian argument to and fro.

Dr Evil said...

You will be missed!

Umbongo said...

Oh shit!!

As others have said, you'll be missed. You brought occasional catharsis to your readers - well, this reader anyway - as well as creating it for yourself.

Thanks and all the best for the future

Blue Eyes said...

I won't bemoan the loss, I shall be glad you blogged at all! It was fun. Thank you.

Simon Jester said...

'Is there any chance of persuading you not to delete the blog?' - thirded.

Do you attend the monthly Southwark symposium? I haven't been to one yet, but now seems like a good time to start.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for some of the best written blog posts I have read.

Very sad to hear you are packing it in although I feared that would be the case as you were away so much.

I am another of those who realised I was more Libertarian than 'left' or 'right' thanks to The Kitchen. I will miss hearing your thoughts on things.

All the best for the future.

Lastman Jack

Anonymous said...

Good luck with whatever it is you are pursuing. Will miss your lefty baiting and genuinely thought provoking blogs.

Cheers.

Pogo said...

Fare thee well Chris... Another "must read" bites the dust. I'll miss your ascerbic humour and excellent writing, but "needs must when the Devil drives" - even if it's a software company! :-)

Good luck with the "day job". Maybe see you for a pint sometime.

Hasta la proxima.

Allan Scullion said...

Hey DK... My reasons for stopping pretty much mirrored yours. Still, it was great while it lasted.

Take care mate

Allan

Dr Crackers said...

I too have lost interest for reasons you state. The Polly rant remains #1 in the Greatest Hits List.

Hope your wife's dental structures in good working order

wife in the north said...

I don't think you should delete it. I went away and came back maybe you will too.

Suboptimal Planet said...

Sounds like you're quitting for all the right reasons.

So long and thanks for all the fisk.

Henry North London 2.0 said...

" So long and thanks for all the fisk" I love it Perfect...

Steve Perrett said...

Is he gone yet? Can we talk about him now...?

I think he was 'mostly harmless...'

Bill said...

I've enjoyed reading your blog over the years, specially as it added piquancy to my own policy of not using profanity of any kind in my own blog - but I live in the real world so always saw the underlying quality behind some of the ways you expressed yourself, even if I didn't agree with all you wrote (although exposure to your and other blogs has certainly strengthened my views, already fairly strong, that small government is much, much better in the long run, coupled with social and economic libertarianism).

For the the past 3 or 4 years my own blogging has declined a lot, although it has not stopped completely, but I don't have the professional commitments that may, I quite understand, make it less appropriate for you to continue with this blog.

Good luck for the future to you and your wife.

John Pickworth said...

Late to the farewell party and sad to hear the news... but wishing you all the very best DK

Its been a blast.

Do consider archiving your site though. There's some valuable history here which may be an inspiration for others to come.

Mike Power said...

At least Iv'e got the T-shirt!

Anonymous said...

I disaprove of your swearing but am sad that you`re fucking off .

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Anonymous said...

Good luck. I felt the same but did not have sufficient motivation or talent to do what you did.
I dud enjoy wearing a lot, and a lot of things did deserve swearing at.
Cathartic indeed.

Best Wishes,
Dude503

Leg-iron said...

Agh! Another one bites the dust! I can understand your reasoning, you have more to risk than we old buggers who have done all we ever wanted and can now be grumpy old gits in our spare time.

This was the blog that set me from my previous incarnation of random lunacy into a slightly more focused train of blogging thought.

You'll be missed, but not forgotten. Thought about putting it all together into a book? It costs nothing and will probably make you a millionaire if you sell it as a £1-ebook, you know.

Best of luck for the future.