Thursday, December 30, 2004

Let's Hope It's A Good One

I have been blessed with yet another three day weekend due to the fact that tomorrow is New Year's Eve so I will likely take a break from blogging from now until Monday.

This weekend should give all of us an opportunity to reflect back on 2004 and, in between hangovers, set our goals for 2005. And what a year 2004 was - election and all. In lieu of a retrospective of the year's ups and downs, I want to thank all of the many thoughtful readers and commenters who, through their generosity and contributions, have made TIA such a rewarding experience for me since its inception in May of this year. Without you, this site would be little more than me screaming into the void (a certain insecure feeling that does creep in every now and again nonetheless).

That being said, I really have relished the opportunity to express myself in this and other fora, and interact with people in a constructive way - especially those who disagree with my opinions and arguments and cause me to reassess and question the nature of my beliefs. Such interaction is the only way to grow as an individual and as a citizen. In entering the marketplace of ideas, I have tried not to let my pre-conceived notions get the better of my reason, although it is a work in progress. I have tried to serve truth, and do it honestly, believing that the rest will fall in line.

In that pursuit, I have been encouraged beyond my expectations and reassured immensely by the abundance of intelligent voices, caring spirits, and active citizens who populate this newly formed realm that we call the blogosphere. Without this community, I would feel less connected and inspired, more isolated and pessimistic. So, without any undue melodrama, I offer my gracious appreciation for all you have given me, and hope that I was in some way able to give something back.

As my last offering for 2004, here is some weekend reading should you find yourself milling about the blogosphere as the calendar turns pages:

Kevin Drum provides the definitive take on the manufactured Social Security crisis. His article in the
Los Angeles Times is a concise, informative, and plainly worded assessment of the nature of the solvency of Social Security. He provides a welcome perspective and cause for optimism. This research backs him up nicely.

Nadezhda penned one of the most eloquent, balanced and honest appraisals of the relevance and writing of Susan Sontag that I have seen, including a bit of perspective about Sontag's controversial post-9/11 article and what writing like that means in a democracy.

RJ Eskow of Night Light fights author and commentator Christopher Hitchens with a razor wit and deftness that's reminiscent of...well Hitchens himself in his finer moments. It really is an artful take down of the increasingly pompous alcohol-infused British pundit.

Also, don't miss the back and forth between Eskow and
Ellen Dana Nagler that produced a thought provoking and unique idea for framing the religious debate in America (appearing in the latest issue of Mick Arran's Blog Tower e-zine for bloggers).

Middle East scholar,
Ronald Bruce St John, recounts some disturbing instances of "blowback" from the Iraq campaign. Let's hope 2005 presents a more stable Iraq so that these incidents don't follow us into the new year.

The Bush administration proves
once again that loyalty, discipline and acquiescence are more important than honest criticism with their decision to let go another lifelong Republican who had the audacity to point out that the Emperor had no clothes (or in this case was missing a sock). But hey, why should we have an aggressive oversight of the Department of Homeland Security anyway? It's not like that's an important governmental agency. Oh brother....

My one prediction for 2005: The Yankees will win the World Series. I know I'm really going out on a limb with that one, but you heard it here first folks.

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?