Glenn Reynolds grew up a graduate-student and faculty brat, living in Dallas, Cambridge, and Heidelberg before moving to Knoxville, Tennessee. A graduate of the University of Tennessee and Yale Law School, he is a Professor of Law at the University of Tennessee. He blogs at InstaPundit.com, and, for MSNBC, at GlennReynolds.com.
Why do you blog? > I like the instant gratification of having an idea, seeing it in print (well, pixels), and getting immediate responses. I also love the connection with the readers.
What has been your best blogging experience? > Discovering unknown bloggers and helping them get the audience they deserve.
What has been your worst blogging experience? > Wading through oceans of hate mail engendered by posts I didn't think anyone would be offended by.
What would be your main blogging advice to a novice blogger? > Pick something that you know more about than most people, and develop your expertise. And pitch posts on that topic - not your blog overall - to other bloggers.
Who are your intellectual heroes? > Charles Black, Arthur Allen Leff, Freeman Dyson.
What are you reading at the moment? > Harry Turtledove, In the Presence of Mine Enemies.
Who are your cultural heroes? > John Fogerty, Bob Walkenhorst, Neal Stephenson.
What is the best novel you've ever read? > Cryptonomicon, by Neal Stephenson.
What is your favourite poem? > Charles Black's 'Letting Go'. Yeats's 'The Second Coming' is a close second, as is 'Cypresses' by Katherine Smith, my sister-in-law; though Cypresses is a bit too sad.
What is your favourite movie? > The Stunt Man, with Peter O'Toole and Barbara Hershey.
What is your favourite song? > 'Born to Move', by Creedence Clearwater Revival.
Who is your favourite composer? > Johann Sebastian Bach.
Can you name a major moral, political or intellectual issue on which you've ever changed your mind? > Loads of them. When I was a student, I thought that public-choice theory was self-serving conservative twaddle. When I became a lawyer/lobbyist, I discovered that it was exactly right.
What philosophical thesis do you think it most important to disseminate? > That there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in philosophy.
What philosophical thesis do you think it most important to combat? > That life should conform to a philosophy.
Who are your political heroes? > JFK, Jefferson, Joseph Story.
What is your favourite piece of political wisdom? > There's no such thing as a free lunch.
If you could effect one major policy change in the governing of your country, what would it be? > I'd enforce the Constitutional principle of limited and enumerated federal powers.
What would you do with the UN? > Replace it with an association of free and democratic nations.
What do you consider to be the main threat to the future peace and security of the world? > The various incarnations of statism.
What would be your most important piece of advice about life? > Most things that cause us great distress aren't that important. If it's not the death or serious illness of yourself or a loved one, it's not worth losing a lot of sleep over. But even knowing this, you will still lose sleep over unimportant things.
Do you think you could ever be married to, or in a long-term relationship with, someone with radically different political views from your own? > Yes.
What do you consider the most important personal quality? > Character, integrity.
What personal fault do you most dislike? > Opportunism.
What commonly enjoyed activities do you regard as a waste of time? > Watching sports on television. Others obviously see it differently.
What, if anything, do you worry about? > Dropping the ball.
If you were to relive your life to this point, is there anything you'd do differently? > Fully fund my 401k (retirement plan) at the earliest possible moment.
What would your ideal holiday be? > Scuba diving in the Caribbean.
What do you like doing in your spare time? > Reading, making and listening to music, spending time with family.
What is your most treasured possession? > My grandfather's Pure Oil Company tie-tacks and cufflinks.
If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to? > William.
What talent would you most like to have? > Singing.
What would be your ideal choice of alternative profession or job? > (Scuba) Dive operator.
Which baseball team do you support? > The Red Sox.
What animal would you most like to be? > A dolphin. They seem to have nice lives.
[Previous profiles: Ophelia Benson (Nov 7); Chris Bertram (Sep 26); Alan Brain (Oct 10); Chris Brooke (Jan 2); Francois Brutsch (Dec 5); Jackie D (Oct 17); Harry Hatchet (Oct 24); Saddam Hussein (Nov 14); Jeff Jarvis (Dec 26); Oliver Kamm (Nov 21); Sheila O'Malley (Dec 19); Natalie Solent (Nov 28); Roger L. Simon (Oct 31); Michael J. Totten (Oct 3); Brian Weatherson (Dec 12). The normblog profile is a weekly Friday morning feature.]