Welcome to the redesigned Popehat

We've fixed the place up some. Hope you like it. If anything isn't working right, feel free to leave a comment or else send me an email.

As you can see, the most recent post will always display at the top. Below that you'll see whatever relatively new post and old post we've chosen to sticky this week. The rest of the posts are below. You can also navigate some of our most popular tags and categories above, or navigate by author, date, or category on the right-hand menu down the page a bit.

We've removed the link to the forums while we renovate them.

You'll notice we've added Google ads. That's not so we can buy cocaine. All income from the Amazon Associates links and the Google ads will first go to pay out-of-pocket expenses like hosting. We're going to start featuring a monthly charity, and we'll give the excess to them.

Edited to add: Some people have been having problems with the front page not serving them the most recent posts. That's been an issue for a while. We think it's a problem with Cloudflare caching, and we're going to address it.

Last 5 posts by Ken White


  1. Mike says

    If I might make a suggestion: One additional feature I'd find useful is the ability to navigate from one post to 'previous' and 'next' posts.

  2. David C says

    Hmm, I somehow got redirected to a 404 the first time I tried to post a comment, when filling in the name/email fields.

    Before that, I was just going to say "this font has really tiny 'quote' marks."

  3. CheshireLion says

    Page had rendering issues on my galaxy S5 the first 3 reloads. After that all good. Welcoming the new site gladly.

  4. says

    It's really skinny. The content area is set to 778px, at maximum (any resolution 1188 pixels or wider). Given that a typical desktop monitor is 1920×1080, that's a lot of wasted space. The site's responsive (that's good!) but mobile-last (that's bad). I'm not familiar with Studiopress or the Genesis Framework, but I've worked with Bootstrap and Foundation and I think they make for better responsive themes than what you're using here. That said, I'm aware there are a lot of reasons to choose a WordPress theme and the CSS is only one of many; if you went with a theme that has useful features and is easy to maintain for your purposes, then some minor sacrifices on the frontend are understandable.

    And while I think the font looks good in your post, I think the gray color in this comment box is too light for such a light font; I'd recommend darkening it a few shades.

    Not that you're here to please me or that I think my opinions are any more important than the next guy's. But those are my initial thoughts; do with them as you will.

  5. Ornithorhynchus says

    'As you can see, the most recent post will always display at the top.'

    That's not what I got. When I clicked on this site (after searching for 'Popehat', just like I always do), I got the Reason Gag-Order story at the top (with the old page design). I had to click to get the full article, then scroll way, way down to find 'Last 5 Posts from Ken White', then click on the top article, which brought me here.

    That Reason story has been at the top ever since it was first posted, and I always had to scroll down to find the link to the newest article. Even though the link that comes up in my search engine appears to be to the main site, not that specific article.

    This has been annoying me for some time, actually.

    Maybe it will change after this new format has been here awhile.

    (Even though this is my first comment, I've been reading you regularly ever since you started reporting on the Reason story. I'd read a few other things here in the past (mainly from links at Reason), but I didn't start coming regularly until this. Over the last several weeks, I've been reading a lot of the old posts from following the links to related stories that you usually include. I hope you continue with that practice in your new format, otherwise I'll need to find a new way to explore here.)

  6. En Passant says

    New format works fine for me. Last one worked fine too. And the one before that.

    Thanks for keeping blogroll around. It's very handy when I don't immediately recall some blog's URL, which means usually every day.

    Adam Steinbaugh says August 12, 2015 at 10:28 pm:

    unrelated: how do i form a charitable organization

    Depends on your state, and the form of organization you want. Federal (IRS) tax deductible qualification comes in several flavors, depending on nature of organization, public benefit or mutual benefit, etc.

    A common setup is to incorporate as a public benefit corporation in your state, and qualify for federal 501(c)(3) status. But there are other, more arcane configurations with various tax implications for members or contributors.

    Good place to start for federal 501(c)(3) status basics is Nolo Press: http://www.nolo.com/products/nonprofits

    Read up on basics. Decide what you want your organization to be. Never hurts to pay (few hundred bucks, max) for a little help from a local tax attorney or tax accountant after you decide, to make sure you get all the right state and federal paperwork filed correctly, and (most important) that you know what annual or quarterly paperwork you have to file once you're in operation.

    I'm not a tax attorney, but I've been officer in a some small community nonprofits over the years. This advice is worth every penny you paid for it.

  7. Merissa says

    I like it, but my blog is a mixture of pastels and neons on black, so you probably don't want design input from me.

  8. albert says

    Please use black for text color everywhere. Entries in the "Reply" boxes are several shades lighter than the already too light text areas.

    If your new layout was designed by a 'web page designer', then it just reinforces my belief that 'web page designers' only look at 'design', and not content.

    . .. . .. o

  9. no says

    There is way too much white space between the comments. I'd prefer a more dense format and/or a smaller font.

  10. akahige says

    Whatever controls the generation of the RSS feed, is having serious problems.

    It seems to be stuck in a loop where it grabs old stories and marks them as new, then eventually figures out this was a mistake and changes them to the freshly posted stories. Then after some period of time, it reverts back to the previous stories.

    I'm using the plural because there were two stories just recently posted. These have been substituted in the RSS feed with "What Charles Careon could teach ICANN" and "Donald Trump's Lawyers Don't Know Or Care What Defamation Is".

    Before the new stories were posted, the "When Lightning Strikes An Utter Tool" was repeatedly cycled with an older story which I neglected to note.

    Whatever the other story in the loop is, it stays the same throughout the cycle.

  11. trevor says

    Looks great, nice work! The only obvious problem that I'm seeing is that when viewed in Firefox [40.0.2], the two images inside the "SEARCH SITE" box (both of which link to http://www.abajournal.com/blawg100 ) show a broken image placeholder instead of the intended Blawg 100 images. The same area when viewed in Chrome or Safari properly show the Blawg 100 images.

  12. Jordan says

    Still hoping for threaded comments. XD

    I personally like that popehat doesn't have threaded comments.

  13. Mark says

    I find it difficult to distinguish the text that is simply text from
    that text which links elsewhere. And you use a lot of it, sometimes several times in one sentence. Old-school used to mean that links were underlined and obvious, and while I guess we're getting away from that, it'd be nice to have it be a little more visually distinct. I'm somewhat red-green color blind, which probably explains it. While I'm not asking for special accommodation, my problem's not all that rare.

  14. Zach says

    It's really skinny. The content area is set to 778px, at maximum (any resolution 1188 pixels or wider).

    Just my two cents worth, but it being narrow is a really good idea for reading speed/comprehension. Narrow columns is on of the reasons it is faster to scan a newspaper than a essay on 8.5×11 paper.

  15. says

    I love it!

    At first I thought, "Is this better?" And then I realized I had my screen at 150 percent magnification. teehee

    Congratulations. You are movin' on up!

  16. Pau Amma says

    Like trevor, I don't see the images between the search box and the quote of the month, in the right sidebar. Chromium 43.0.2357.130 Ubuntu 14.04 (64-bit)

  17. Sami says

    It's nice enough, mostly, but for some reason I find it actually quite difficult to identifyi actual, recent posts.

  18. Pekka says

    I didn't feel a redesign was really necessary, but it looks nice.

    Would put the "featured" posts into the sidebar, though. They disrupt the "Blog" flow.

    Also the main menu could use a "home" link. Yeah, you get "home" by clicking the logo, but still.

  19. grberry says

    At least for the "Featured Flashback Posts", can you update the internal links? If it is worth featuring, it is worth making it work well.

    In today's entitled "If A Bigfoot Hunter Doesn't Have His Reputation, What Does He Have?" both the internal links on the words "here" in "You can find his complaint here and the docket of actions in the case to date here." are out of date.

  20. Stephen says

    FWIW, I too had the problem of the newest post not always loading but I seem to have fixed it by only visiting from an incognito window in Chrome. Not sure why it works, but it hasn't failed me in over a month of trying while hitting the site through a standard window continues to show me a post from July 15th-ish.

  21. Aron says

    For those like me having trouble with new posts not always loading, hard refresh (Ctrl + F5) does the trick.

  22. says

    Server caching has always been a major technical issue for this blog. I had to reload several times (on my PC), then take the www. off popehat.com to get it out of the maintenance mode (on my iPad).

    Anyway, you know about it, but my point was: I visit one other blog that has the same problem, and they’re also on Cloudflare. There was a third, but they ditched Cloudflare and then it was no longer an issue.

  23. NormalAnomaly says

    I've been lurking and archive binging on my phone for the past few months, relying on the previous and next buttons. Now they're gone and a lot of your content is much harder for me to find. Please put the buttons back. Also, until today the "5 most recent posts" bit was a month out of date after updating fine before then. The Reason story was always at the top of the list and I assumed you hadn't posted anything else.

  24. Pekka says

    The "Featured Flashback Post" feature is awesome and left me craving for more. A "Best of Popehat" would be warranted in the long term.

    What is a bit annoying is that the top content is showing also when browsing through the archive pages.

  25. says

    Can we request that at least some of the extra, between "server costs" and "charity", goes to hookers and/or blow for you guys? You deserve it.

  26. Trebuchet says

    Looking very good so far. I actually got the latest post when I went in, for the first time in a while. That's been a real pain so I hope it's fixed, or will be soon.

    Yes, it only uses about half of my wide screen. But it's very readable that way.

  27. Trebuchet says

    Just one thought: It would be nice if the ellipsis at the end of the main page shortened post was clickable to get to the rest of the story instead of users having to scroll back to the top.

  28. Trebuchet says

    And another: The link color seems insufficiently different from the main text color. They're hard to pick out.

  29. marvo says

    "problems with the front page not serving them the most recent posts"
    Yup still having that, I see "Living To Make A Difference" currently and have to click "Ken White" to see newer posts. I know you guys don't do this to make money but I guess that you want people to see the excellent things you post.

  30. Trebuchet says

    The "not serving latest posts" problem just struck again and gave me the "updating" page. That really should have taken priority over the redesign; it's been going on for months.

  31. Mike says

    Seconding the comments that the format of the comments is too sparse. There's the space for about six lines of text between the end of the previous comment and the header for the next. About a third of that should be just fine for reading comprehension. Also, the font may be too big?

    But otherwise, good work with the site. I like it!

  32. Fasolt says

    Would it be possible, or desirable, to once again enable comments for the Featured Flashback Post for a brief time?

  33. Matt W says

    Favorite thing about the redesign is that it somehow now works perfectly with my browser cookies. Previously I had to delete cookies for the site in order to see the most recent content.

  34. Matt says

    Something seems off – in Chrome, if I type in "popehat.com" (which automatically is being directed to http://www.popehat.com, if that makes any difference), I keep getting a placeholder page saying the site is down for maintenance. However, I follow a link from TechDirt to an article, I can get to that article, and then from there to the mainpage…

    (ETA: Some googling indicates this may be a Chrome issue? But I guess also that your www page is down or no longer resolves or something.)

  35. OrderoftheQuaff says

    I liked the old layout better, but this has been my reaction to every single layout change in the history of the internet.

  36. Trebuchet says

    (ETA: Some googling indicates this may be a Chrome issue? But I guess also that your www page is down or no longer resolves or something.)

    I think it's more of a Popehat issue, unfortunately. It's been going on for quite some time.

  37. Adrian says

    Seeing intermittent front page issues since going to the new site format. At seemingly random times, going to http://www.popehat.com will bring up a "We are making updates to the website and will be back shortly.", instead of redirecting to http://popehat.com. Currently resolving to and .206.41 and both IPs seem to have the problem. I'm guessing the IPs are a rotating front-end pool of caching proxy servers and there is a bad/stale copy somewhere in there…

  38. TRX says

    The text is lost in the vast acres of whitespace. Lots of scrolling is now necessary to see the same amount of text that used to fit on the screen. And now I get spidery grey fonts on a screaming white background.

    I guess you have a vested interest in the new look, but would it be possible to select the old format somehow?

  39. says

    The caching problem seems to be related to Popehat's use of CloudFlare. I'm not involved in the current redesign/reconfiguration, but my understanding from afar is that there's a plan to quit that service. In the meantime, CTRL+F5 should force a hard refresh in Chrome.

  40. says

    David has labored many long hours to make this site work despite my best efforts to break it.

    I will ditch CloudFlare when I have time.

  41. jdh says

    How does the new format compare vs the old with regard to generating comments. It seems like the number of comments is down, although I haven't actually, you know, COUNTED anything.

    In the interest of kicking a dying horse, the comment feed seems to refresh much better than the one for articles. I found Ken's latest post by looking at comments.

  42. KronWeld says

    Well, Firefox on Linux or Windows 7, I'm mostly getting the down for maintainence message and it takes several CTRL+F5 before I can get the front page.

  43. Dan Weber says

    I will carry on a long internet tradition of rewarding the Popehat team's hard work with a style complaint.

    Comments take up too much vertical room on the page. All the space between posts doesn't give me time to think. Rather, it's makes it harder to spin through the comments to find the engaging[*] ones.

    [*] This could mean both "those worth reading" and "those that make me angry," which probably isn't good for me.

  44. marvo says

    I rather agree with Dan Weber about the amount of space taken up by comments, there seems to be a lot more scrolling now.
    Also do the headlines have to be quite so much larger in font size?

  45. Trebuchet says

    I tried to post a comment last night and got a "blocked" notice. I shall try again. Still getting the obsolete pages every time I try to go in and have to work around. Fixing this should have had MUCH higher priority than the page redesign. It's been going on for far too long.

  46. KronWeld says

    I do like the new format, problems and all, but where are the latest articles on Prenda and crew? Duffy died, Illinois has move head to recommending the State Supremes consider doing something to them; a seven count indictment ! Plus sanctions being upheld right and left. Ken is even quoted in one of the articles I've read. Go Ken!

  47. Trebuchet says

    Holy crap! Duffy died? My first thought was "I'll believe that when I can shove my hand into his rotting corpse and verify that there is, and never was, a heart". But this obit, which lists one of the causes of death as "chronic ethanolism" is both funny and sad at the same time. I never saw "ethanolism" before.

  48. spinetingler says

    http://www.popehat.com (which is my bookmark) has been taking me to a "Down for maintenance" page for some time. I thought that perhaps there was a really intense site update going on or that maybe a hack had taken place, so I googled and chose an internal link, which got me here.

    Using Firefox.

  49. Trebuchet says

    @Rus: Almost, but not quite, at least not for me. www.\\popehat.com gives me the "maintenance" page. http:\\popehat.com gives me the main page, but it's out of date, having the 8/20 Steinbaugh post at the top. The same happens if you click on the Popehat logo. But if you go down to one of Ken's posts and click on his name, he's posted since then.

  50. Trebuchet says

    I just realized there's no longer a list of Popehat bloggers on the main page. That needs to get fixed.

  51. Manabi says

    @Rus, @Trebuchet: I get the same thing. http://www.popehat is always a maintenance page, just popehat loads the site. This looks like a caching plugin screwing up. I've seen this happen with wp-super-cache a LOT in the past. Sometimes you have to jettison the entire cache and let it start over to fix it. Bet that's the problem here.

    FWIW, http://www.popehat's been giving me the maintenance page for several days now. I thought the site had been hacked or something.

  52. jig says

    YAY! This rework fixed things so that when I post links to your articles on Facebook, the title of the article and such pops up automagically again (it wasn't working for a while).

    I drive much more traffic to your site when the lead in of the post identifies the subject, and everyone recognizes and desires the pithy titles.

    Thanks for updated site, and thanks for the ongoing posts.