Front page
Archive
Silflay Hraka?


Bigwig is a systems administrator at a public university
Hrairoo is the proprietor of a quality used bookstore
Kehaar is.
Woundwort is a professor of counseling at a private university

The Hraka RSS feed

Email
bigwig AT nc.rr.com

Friends of Hraka
InstaPundit
Daily Pundit
cut on the bias
Meryl Yourish
This Blog Is Full Of Crap
Winds of Change
A Small Victory
Silent Running
Dr. Weevil
Little Green Footballs
ColdFury
Oceanguy
Fragments from Floyd
VodkaPundit
Allah
The Feces Flinging Monkey
Dean's World
Little Tiny Lies
The Redsugar Muse
Sperari
Natalie Solent
From the Mrs.
ErosBlog
The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler
On the Third Hand
Public Nuisance
Not a Fish
Rantburg
AMCGLTD
WeckUpToThees!
Electric Venom
Skippy, The Bush Kangaroo
Common Sense and Wonder
Neither Here Nor There
Wizbang!
Bogieblog
ObscuroRant
RocketJones
The Greatest Jeneration
Ravenwolf
Ipse Dixit
TarHeelPundit
Blog On the Run
blogatron
Redwood Dragon
Notables
Greeblie Blog
Have A Cuppa Tea
A Dog's Life
IMAO
Zonitics.com
Iberian Notes
Midwest Conservative Journal
A Voyage to Arcturus
HokiePundit
Trojan Horseshoes
In Context
dcthornton.blog
The People's Republic of Seabrook
Country Store
Blog Critics
Chicago Boyz
Hippy Hill News
Kyle Still Free Press
The Devil's Excrement
The Fat Guy
War Liberal
Assume the Position
Balloon Juice
Iron Pen In A Velvet Glove
IsraPundit
Freedom Lives
Where Worlds Collide
Knot by Numbers
How Appealing
South Knox Bubba
Heretical Ideas
The Kitchen Cabinet
Dustbury.com
tonecluster
Bo Cowgill
mtpolitics.net
Raving Atheist
The Short Strange Trip
Shark Blog
Hoplites
Jimspot
Ron Bailey's Weblog
Cornfield Commentary
Testify!
Northwest Notes
pseudorandom
The Blog from the Core
Ain'tNoBadDude
CroMagnon
The Talking Dog
WTF Is It Now??
Blue Streak
Smarter Harper's Index
nikita demosthenes
Bloviating Inanities
Sneakeasy's Joint
Ravenwood's Universe
The Eleven Day Empire
World Wide Rant
All American
Pdawwg
The Rant
The Johnny Bacardi Show
The Head Heeb
Viking Pundit
Mercurial
Oscar Jr. Was Here
Just Some Poor Schmuck
Katy & Bruce Loebrich
But How's The Coffee?
Roscoe Ellis
Foolsblog
Sasha Castel
Dodgeblogium
Susskins Central Dispatch
DoggerelPundit
Josh Heit
Attaboy
Aaron's Rantblog
MojoMark
As I was saying...
Blog O' Dob
Dr. Frank's Blogs Of War
Betsy's Page
A Knob for Brightness
Fresh Bilge
The Politburo Diktat
Drumwaster's rants
Curt's Page
The Razor
An Unsealed Room
The Legal Bean
Helloooo chapter two!
As I Was Saying...
SkeptiLog AGOG!
Tong family blog
Vox Beth
Velociblog
I was thinking
Judicious Asininity
This Woman's Work
Fragrant Lotus
DaGoddess
Single Southern Guy
Caerdroia
GrahamLester.Com
Jay Solo's Verbosity
TacJammer
Snooze Button Dreams
Horologium
You Big Mouth, You!
From the Inside looking Out
Night of the Lepus
No Watermelons Allowed
From The Inside Looking Out
Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics
Suburban Blight
Aimless
The SmarterCop
Dog of Flanders
From Behind the Wall of Sleep
Beaker's Corner
Bad State of Gruntledness
Who Tends The Fires
Granny Rant
Elegance Against Ignorance
Moxie.nu
Eccentricity
Say What?
Blown Fuse
Wait 'til Next Year
The Pryhills
The Whomping Willow
The National Debate
The Skeptician
Zach Everson
MonkeyWatch
Geekward Ho
Argghhh!!!
Life in New Orleans
Rotten Miracles
Fringe
The Biomes Blog
illinigirl
See What You Share
Truthprobe
Blog d’Elisson
Your Philosophy Sucks
Watauga Rambler
Socialized Medicine
Consternations
Verging on Pertinence
Read My Lips
ambivablog
Soccerdad
The Flannel Avenger
Butch Howard's WebLog
Castle Argghhh!
Andrew Hofer
kschlenker.com
Moron Abroad
White Pebble
Darn Floor
Wizblog
tweedler
Pajama Pundits
BabyTrollBlog
Cadmusings
Goddess Training 101
A & W
Medical Madhouse
Slowly Going Sane
The Oubliette
American Future
Right Side Redux
See The Donkey
Newbie Trucker
The Right Scale
Running Scared
Ramblings Journal
Focus On Reality
Wyatt's Torch

July 31, 2002

Why doesn’t ______ have a


Why doesn’t ______ have a blog?

Politicians are constantly trying to get a message out. To do that, they’re beholden to the mainstream media, which they pretty much hate. It distorts their positions and mis-quotes them when not actively attacking them. You can be a media darling for a little while, but it never lasts. There are other ways to reach out. You could clog up mailboxes with your franking privilege, but that probably pisses more people off than it informs. I get enough junk mail, I don’t need snail mail spam from Mike Easley, not that he sends me much. Thanks Mike. There’s also a good argument to be made that the overwhelming political cynicism of the current age is due to the media and its stranglehold on political culture. So politicians are stuck on the back of the media tiger, and it doesn’t look like many are trying to get off.

There are political blogs. There’s lots of them. Practically all the news there is about blogging is driven by stories about political blogs.

But why aren’t there any politicians blogs? Well, there are, or rather, there is. One.

At least it's the only one that I found, after a rather lengthy search. If you know of more, let me know, and I’ll add them here.

Bill Wood's Weblog

He’s only been around since May 13th. Of course, that’s a full seven days longer that we’ve been around, so I’m not casting any stones. It could use some more regular attention, though, Bill.

I think there are a number of advantages to a politician having his or her own blog, as long its updated daily, and as long they post personally.

1.) You can change your position on an issue, and you can point towards “the excellent arguments of the readers on my blog” as a reason. As it stands now, all one hears when a politico changes his stance is screams of “flip-flop” from the other side. Now you have a clear example of the evolution in your thinking for all to see. You won’t get that from television. Stating that time and again will also drive traffic to your blog, traffic that will see your words and your thoughts without them being filtered by the media for probably the first time ever.

How many of you out there would feel a little more warmly about John McCain if he pointed to words you wrote on his blog when discussing how he changed his position on campaign finance reform? Or if Al Gore quoted an argument you used when discussing his new-found distrust of the Kyoto protocols?

2.) Also for the first time, you’d begin to be perceived as a real person. I don’t know about you, but the only major politician I’m prepared to believe was not manufactured by the Stepford corporation is David Price, because he talked to me about books for five minutes one day when I was clerking at B&N. I’ll vote for him, forever. I’d add Terry Sanford to the list to, for the same reasons except he’s dead. And it was for fifteen minutes, over coffee, and he signed a book for my dad. A blog allows you to do the same thing Terry and David did to me, to thousands of people at a time. Posts don’t have to be about your campaign, they can be about anything, and the farther they deviate from whatever the message of the day is, the more likely it will be that people will begin to perceive you as an actual human, rather than a demon in a coat and tie. And you can bet your last dollar that it will be thousands of people at a time, because there isn’t a warblogger around that couldn’t resist linking to damn near everyone of your posts. They’ll probably even link to your message of the day.

3.) You’ll get a lot of media coverage because of the blog. The media is fascinated by them. Blogging may be a fad, and it may die out by 2004. But if it doesn’t it will be absolutely huge, and you’ll have started back in the days of its relative infancy. Which means;

4.) You’ll be seen as the “tech” candidate. Gore may have gotten a lot of grief from the “invented the internet” thing, but one of the best positives he had was his identification with technology and the internet. It’s always nice to look like you can see the future. Besides, more and more people surf the Internet, and a great deal of them depend on it for their jobs. The simple act of putting up a personal site on the web allows them to identify with you. It’s easily more populist than owning a baseball team, or an energy company. The latest numbers show 167 million people are on the web in the US. That’s 63 million more people than voted in the last election. We could reach 200 or 250 million by 2004. Start now, and they’ll respect you then. Start then, and you’ll be a Johnnie come lately.

5.) You can blow off journalists. When Helen Thomas asks you the same damn question she asked yesterday, and the day before that, you can tell her you answered that on your blog, and doesn’t she have any new questions? Forcing journalists to focus away from the scandal of the day allows you to weather them a lot easier, I’d imagine. Best make sure you actually have answered it on your blog, or Helen will look like a pussycat. We notice things like that.

I’ll make a prediction, since after all, I am so good at them. The next president will be the first candidate to start a blog and update it daily. That’ll likely be John McCain, or a Democrat. There’s nothing stopping George Bush, but blogging is a tool used by people who are Internet savvy. George is a CEO, and CEO’s, for the most part, can barely handle email and Powerpoint. You think George knows Powerpoint? You think George even knows what Google is? I’d be happy to be wrong, but nothing I have ever read or heard suggests to me that George Bush surfs the web. Umm, if you happen to be reading this, Mr. President, I’m pretty sure that’s Ari Fleischer’s fault. On the plus side if nobody starts a blog, I’m predicting you’ll be re-elected.

Also if any of the major prospective candidates start a blog anytime soon, you can bet they’ve decided to run for office.

Of course, the blogs will need names. Here’s a few suggestions.

Al Gore – Inventor of the Blog – Self deprecating humor always plays well with the electorate. Remember his Macarena?

John McCain - The Straight Blog – reminds people of the straight talk express, back in the day. Also sounds like the Straight Dope, which carries overtones of “The buck stops here” or for the particularly geeky, a man who knows everything.

Dick Gephardt – High Brow Blog – plays off the popular culture portrayal of him as a man with no eyebrows.

John Edwards – Mr. Edwards goes to Washington – Reminds people that he’s new to Washington, so he can still carry a whiff of outsider. And it never hurts to identify yourself with Jimmy Stewart, who played a number of crusaders. If you’re going to be a lawyer, it’s best to be a crusading lawyer.

Tom Harken – Corn Blog.

Joe Lieberman….John Kerry…. I don’t know. Any suggestions?

I’m not going to pretend that politicians are going to post to a blog without it being proof-read and scanned for bombs by, at the very least, an English teacher and campaign staffers. But, Mr. Candidate, if you treat it as your blog, rather than your campaign’s blog, it will pay great dividends. Also, you’d probably need someone familiar with the blogosphere to um…facilitate things. Hello?......Hello?

Posted by Bigwig at July 31, 2002 04:17 PM | TrackBack
Postscript:
First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself.
Comments
Post a comment Note: Comments with more than two dashes per line will be blocked as spam.









Remember personal info?