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As someone tempted to comment on politics, I'd love for the detox to continue indefinitely, with an instant lifetime ban for the first offence.

HN doesn't add much to politics (it looks just like that kind of discussion would look anywhere else) but politics does detract from HN (firstly because you get less of what HN has that is less prevalent elsewhere, and secondly because politics is great at distracting attention from everything else.)

This would not be a controversial statement if "politics" were replaced with "pornography" and I think the two are, in this context, very much a like - you can have none, or you can have just that one thing as they do in many places and that too "works" in its own way, but having a little works badly.

(And if anything, if HN had porn it'd be easier to ignore it than politics because with politics, not only do you need to avoid the temptation to read about it but also to argue with the harebrained viewpoint in the comments that threatens your family, country and the entire humanity, and then they have to avoid the temptation to push back against my harebrained arguments threatening their family, country and the entire humanity. And just standing there and doing nothing when humanity is at risk, for the sake of a goal so narrow and insignificant as keeping HN about one thing and not another, is very, very hard.)

HN has no ban on porn that I'm aware of; erotica has been upvoted and no doubt will be again.

HN is for what's intellectually interesting—not the other kinds of interesting.


I see no contradiction between being pornographic and being intellectually interesting.

The intersection of the two might be ok, but not the set-difference.

Well sure. It's always been a question of things in the intersection, with politics as well.

(While you're here I'll remind you about turning off flagging on some overly-politicised stories that were being flagkilled earlier this year - if you're worried about HN becoming overly political then that sent the opposite message)

I'm sure we do send opposite messages sometimes, because there are contradictory concerns.

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