CommunityFDL Main Blog

Why Join Firedoglake? Because It Is the Warmest, Most Courageous On-Line Community I Know Of

fire – dog – lake – labtop


It was early 2005. The Iraq War was approaching its worst stage. I was spending more time on-line, reading the news articles one couldn’t (and still cannot) find in the traditional media. Political blogs were blossoming up like mushrooms after a warm Autumn rain.

One day, reading an article at Majikthise, one of the few blogs where I would occasionally comment, I followed a link to a blog with a strange name – firedoglake. The next day, some other blog linked to an article here. I bookmarked the site and started reading it regularly.

Soon, I decided to comment here. It was risky, as I didn’t feel as knowledgeable on the issue at hand – I can’t remember what it was – but felt I might add a little. Within a few minutes, my comment was greeted by Jane Hamsher, who welcomed me, Edward Teller.

The blog was new then, and like a lot of lefty or lefty-ish sites then, it was much smaller, a pure labor of love by Hamsher and Christy Hardin Smith. firedoglake was the first blog outside of Alaska where I began to regularly write comments. I began to make a fair number of friends here.

As the campaigns in 2006 began to warm up and get going, I was able to introduce Diane Benson, the very progressive Alaska civil rights leader, running against Rep. Don Young, to a wider national audience through comments here, and articles at Down With Tyranny! Feedback on my comments here encouraged me as a writer, and helped me improve the way I organized essays. Other commenters at “the lake” encouraged me to start my own blog, which I did in the Fall of 2007.

By the summer of 2008, Federal investigations into Alaska political corruption seemed to be homing in more and more on Rep. Young, and on the iconic Alaska U.S. Senator, Ted Stevens. I suggested to Jane that we hold a poetry contest on Stevens similar to the one we had held on Dick Cheney, after he had shot his best friend in the face. That had been called Dickfest. We named the Stevens poetry contest, Tedfest.

After the many entries had been judged, I created a series of tubes with the poems wrapped around the outsides. I then went to his campaign office in Anchorage to deliver them, and see if I could somehow manage lunch with the senior Senator for the winners. [cont’d.]

CommunityMy FDL

Why Join Firedoglake? Because It Is the Warmest, Most Courageous On-Line Community I Know Of

fire - dog - lake - labtop
fire – dog – lake – labtop

It was early 2005.  The Iraq War was approaching its worst stage.  I was spending more time on-line, reading the news articles one couldn’t (and still cannot) find in the traditional media.  Political blogs were blossoming up like mushrooms after a warm Autumn rain.

One day, reading an article at Majikthise, one of the few blogs where I would occasionally comment, I followed a link to a blog with a strange name – firedoglake.  The next day, some other blog linked to an article here.  I bookmarked the site and started reading it regularly.

Soon, I decided to comment here.  It was risky, as I didn’t feel very knowledgeable on the issue at hand – can’t remember what it was – but felt I might add a little.  Within a few minutes, my comment was greeted by Jane Hamsher, who welcomed me, Edward Teller.

The blog was new then, and like a lot of lefty or lefty-ish sites then, it was much smaller, a pure labor of love by Hamsher and Christy Hardin Smith.  firedoglake was the first blog outside of Alaska where I began to regularly write comments.  I began to make a fair number of friends here.

As the campaigns in 2006 began to warm up and get going, I was able to introduce Diane Benson, the very progressive Alaska civil rights leader, running against Rep. Don Young, to a wider national audience through comments here, and articles at Down With Tyranny! Feedback on my comments here encouraged me as a writer, and helped me improve the way I organized essays.  Other commenters at “the lake” encouraged me to start my own blog, which I did in the Fall of 2007. (more…)

Previous post

Live Blog: WikiLeaks Releases the Stratfor Emails (Day 7)

Next post

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Arthur Goldwag, The New Hate: A History of Fear and Loathing on the Populist Right

Philip Munger

Philip Munger

musician, composer, educator, environmental and community planning activist