My apologies to readers who might have been trying to leave comments this evening--they don't appear to "take." I've asked the wonderful Echo folks to do something about this: in the meanwhile, please rest assured that this is not due to any heavy-handedness on my part.
UPDATE: Back in business. Fire away!
UPPERDATE: Well, no. Very much on-again, off-again, and comments are being plucked from sub-threads and placed in main threads.
Tell you what, gentle readers--I'm going back to work. Keep commenting by all means, though--it seems that they will appear, but only after quite a while.
UPPESTDATE: Notice from Echo--all fixed. Open for business once again.