Archive for May 4th, 2007

Blogging 101

by Jay Stevens

Ah, the Internets…

Remember waaa-a-a-a-y back when – in the Dark Ages of the Montana blogosphere? Last September? When a class at the University of Richmond was blogging the disputed Senate races, including Montana’s own brouhaha?

(Looking back at the Montana Senate blog, it appears one of the students…well…had a nervous breakdown.)

Anyhow, a prof in the Ohio State system is teaching an English class using blogs as an example of rhetorical exercise.

Good luck there, Mr. Boczkowski.

For nascent bloggers, I have some advice:

–Do not write in italics. It hurts the eyes.

–Use a lot of paragraph breaks. Those spaces give the mind a lot of comfort.

–Always remember the funny.

 (If you do go over for a visit, do be gentle on the class. Remember, I’m here by choice and offer myself up for your jabs; those poor souls are indentured servants toiling in the fields of higher education.)

I do think studying blogging for a composition class is a good idea. There’s a variety of language styles, voices, and ways to frame ideas. That’s something a lot of 4&20 b’bird and blog haters miss: different tone, vocabulary, and voice is appropriate to different situations. And determining a voice that “sells” your blog is a valuable skill – if you can decipher the rules and conventions that govern a media (blogging, in this case), and adapt your writing to fit in, you’ll find communication is a snap. But it is an exercise that requires practice…

Oh, man, do I not miss teaching English composition…


by Jay Stevens

The Good Guv fishes for a Republican he can cut a deal with…

Matt Singer *gasp* praises Dennis Rehberg for protecting a constituent’s privacy

Missoula Senator Greg Lind ensured that more young people would be insured.

David Sirota finds class warfare waged in a working-class town in the recent economic conference; Ed Kemmick implores Schweitzer to negotiate, and Sirota to STFU; Matt Singer responds.

The Missoula town council mulls its sidewalks.

Larry LaRocco announced his candidacy for Idaho’s disputed Senate seat.

Olivier Roy argues that Islamic radicalism is more accurately a result of the westernization of Islam, not an organic, Islamic-born radicalism.

Apparently the Vatican, like bedwetters, see nothing but terror in basic liberty.

The quagmire of current affairs we find ourselves in has “…all hallmarks of a pathological masculinity that confuses diplomacy with weakness and arrogant rigidity with strength. It is founded not on a self-assured sense of what it is but on a neurotic loathing of what it secretly fears it may be: wussy. And it will go to the grave insisting on battering-ram stiffness (stay the course! don’t pull out!) as the truest mark of manhood.”

Congressional Republicans oppose hate crimes bill because it doesn’t include seniors and military personnel. Er. Not really. Too bad they just can’t come out and say they don’t think gays should be protected by hate crime legislation.

Jon Stewart on the DC madam scandal.

Grover Norquist on DC madam’s list?

The winner of the first Republican primary debate: Ronald Reagan.

Ron Paul was spot on when he said that the rush to war in Iraq went against all traditional conservative foreign policy values. Too bad we don’t have many principled conservatives in the federal government. We sure could have used one a couple years ago.

Shane likes Senator Clinton’s plan to deauthorize the war in Iraq. I agree. Would the deauthorization be subject to a veto?

A Washington prosecutor claims US attorney John McKay was fired by the DoJ because he wanted to concentrate his resources, not on bogus voter fraud cases, but on investigating the murder of assistant US attorney, Tom Wales. Why would the loyal Bushies take offense at that? Because Wales was in favor of gun control.

Did Karl Rove coach DoJ testifiers to mislead Congress? It sure looks that way.

Condi Rice’s office keeps “dodging” Henry Waxman. Does she think he’ll give up?

Does Bush’s threat to veto any legislation that “allow[s] taxpayer dollars to be used for the destruction of human life,” mean that he’s going to cut off funding for the Iraq War? Seriously, though, it’s telling that clumps of fetal tissue evoke more compassion from Bush than Iraqi civilians or US troops.

Eugene Robinson: “Is George W. Bush even trying to make sense anymore?”

It’s true! George Bush is the CEO President. And I don’t mean that in a good way.

Jon Stewart: Don’t call them “timetables,” call them “glory goals.”

Colbert on rendition: “We pay the price for having to torture innocent people. It feels terrible!”

Nicole’s butt rash song is a finalist in Look Daddy’s song lyric competition! Go vote for her! (But whatever you do, do not sing “Joe-Ray-Lee,” or you, too, will be compelled to vote for it.)

Bring civility to your blog posts!

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