For political junkies, must-see TV once meant sitting through hours of "Crossfire," "Hannity & Colmes" and "Meet the Press," hoping for the occasional gem. Nowadays, to catch Robert Novak turning the air blue on "Inside Politics" or work yourself into an apoplectic lather over our politicians' latest truth-challenged utterances, you can point your browser to http://www.crooksandliars.com , the brainchild of 47-year-old West L.A. musician and liberal-Democrat John Amato. Since last fall, he has been serving up political dish from a decidedly blue-state perspective with daily posts of video and audio streams.John found a niche that is unique, putting up clips from TV and other sources so that atrocities that might have been missed are now being seen by thousands of readers. He does the heavy lifting so that others may watch and learn. He is definitely the hardest working man in blog business.
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What is the blogging community like? Do you guys socialize?
There are a lot of bloggers in Los Angeles, even a few big conservative blogs. Another blogger said, "Let's have a blogger barbecue," and there were like 50 people there. [Most of the guests] were liberal; I gather some were Republicans. We're making some great friendships. There are a lot of characters.
Of course John is referring in his interview to the little soiree held here at House of Audio last August, where we had several of the really bright lights of the left-leaning political bloggersphere, including the also lovely and talented Jane Hamsher who also co-hosted the party with us, Mr. & Mrs. tbogg, mr. & mrs. skippy, Mr. & Mrs. Kevin Drum, Arianna Huffington, and a cast of thousands.
Some other posts on the event:
The Broad View,
The point of this is that supporting and helping other activists, whether it's the volunteers who make calls or register voters, professional writers who have a large scale voice, or bloggers you really enjoy reading, will truly pay off. The liberal message is starting to resonate with more Americans, not just because of all the crap the Repubs have been pulling but also because the view we hold dear are felt by most Americans according to polls. They just don't know it yet, and books, speeches, newspapers, and blogs all help spread our message.
In the 4 months since we had the 1st Annual LA Bloggers Barbecue, with a follow-up at Brian Linse's place in October lots has happened. Scooter (what an ass-wipe of a nick name) Libby and Tom DeLay have been indicted, plans are being made to reduce troop strength in Iraq, and GWBush's poll numbers are falling like Jeff Gannon's shorts in a DC mens' room. The tide is turning.
To any other bloggers who read this, connect with like minds in your area. Admittedly here in Los Angeles we have a pretty large concentration of talent, but there are so many out there, Reach out to your fellow bloggers and activists, the payback is greater visibility and greater penetration into main stream media, and thence into the living rooms of voters.
Also, in the bloggersphere, 2 more bloggers are on their way to becoming true rock stars of the genre: John Amato, and Jane Hamsher, who has done spectacular work on PlameGate.
Mad props to them, and to all who spend their time so passionately trying to stem the tide of Intelligent Design and tax cuts for the wealthy.
God bless us, everyone.