We’re two years old today.
In late winter of 2007, I was running my own itty bitty national news blogsite, when a young man I vaguely knew from political circles proposed we have coffee sometime and talk. What on earth could he want to talk to me about, I wondered. And besides, I don’t drink coffee. But I figured I could order a cup and let it sit. I was curious.
What Clark wanted was to propose that we start a progressive state news blogsite. It was, he told me, a niche that needed filling in this state. He made me see the sense of it, and five or six months later, I explained it to our first readers:
Maybe you wonder, “Really, what do we need with another blog focused on Missouri political news, huh? We’ve already got Fired Up! The folks over there get their jollies being a burr under the Republican saddle. And they do a good job of it.”
Yes, they do.
Believe it or not, though, there’s more to state news than exposing Republican hypocrisy. Oh, we’ll do what we can to roil up their ulcers, all right, but we’ll also offer you the “more” part. Part of “more” is giving you liberals, progressives, Democrats of all stripes news about who’s doing what on our side of the fence. Who’s thinking of running for office and how good are their chances? What nonsense has the Republican lege been up to, and how are the Democrats working to slow those boneheads down? What do we have to do to take back the state for the Blue guys?
We’re truly an internet group here. Before we launched, Clark made the online acquaintance of Blue Girl and Michael Bersin.
Blue Girl he knew from reading her national blogsite, Blue Girl in a Red State. Michael he “met” on MyDD and asked him if he wanted to join us. We didn’t meet Michael in the flesh until a couple of weeks before the site came online, and we didn’t set eyes on Blue Girl until the state convention in May of 2008.
Meanwhile, RBH, a political science student at Warrensburg, found our site and began contributing the occasional diary, replete with knowledge of details about every district in the state. None of the three east side of the state front page writers have ever yet seen this young man.
And finally, I leaned on WillyK to write for us. I knew WillyK from her thoughtful comments on a political discussion listserv we both belonged to. Since the only other Willy I knew was a middle aged black man, that’s how I pictured this Willy–who turned out to be the other gender, white, and sixtyish, like myself.
I’d have let this anniversary slip by, but Michael pointed it out. I think he remembered it last year, too. In those two years, we haven’t become a household name in Missouri. We’re still a small operation. As Michael is fond of pointing out–with a sly grin–we have dozens of readers. Okay, many dozens. What I take pride in is who those dozens are. Our readers are knowledgeable and very active politically. Their comments keep us on our toes.
The other front pagers should speak for themselves, but I didn’t know much more about state politics two years ago than the name of our governor (Stop Blunt trauma!). It’s been a steep, fascinating learning curve.
Here’s a question for the other five of you: what story (stories) did you take the most satisfaction in writing about? And any readers/commenters who’d like to nominate a favorite story should feel free to chime in.
(Maybe it’s just because it’s recent, but I’m thinking about last week’s series on the McCaskill town hall with the Americans for Prosperity–here, here, here, and here–especially as it contrasts with Todd Akin’s town hall last spring.)
Thanks to Michael for the picture.