Steven D wrote a kind word today about Supersoling and Alohaleezy.  It appears that in the intermittent time I spend lurking on various blogs, I have overlooked some hurt, or slight, or kerfuffle that has led my friends to indicate their intent to leave this place.  It is hard to read Steven D’s words and not find him a good man.  Kind and caring.  Decent.  I will always remember him as when I first made his acquaintance, at the September 2005 march on D.C., covered in a blizzard of sun screen, ready to do battle with fascists in order to shorten the war in Iraq.  If I thought him less effective, I would call him Quixotic.  But decent.  A decency that gives me great hope for humanity in general.
Among his kind words was one gem:  Prodigal.  A sprendthrift by definition, but more often associated with the biblical allegory of the favored son who has disappointed, yet is embraced in his failure.  It is this sole word which has inspired me to pen some thoughts.

I will always have a soft place in my heart for this blog and the people who populate it.  When I discovered the blogs in 2004 (and I don’t mean to use the phrase “I discovered them” in the sense it is often used in conjuction with Columbus), I was sorely in need of a family like you (yes, the collective you who are reading this).  Having finished my first novel about the descent of our nation into an anti-terror fascist state, I felt quite isolated.  I thought perhaps I was a solitary lunatic.  And the big orange place was cold comfort, as I realized the only radical idea it embraced was replacing a Republican oligarchy with a Democratic oligarcy.

The Booman Tribune, however, was a home to me.  It only covered about one square foot on my desktop.  But it was a boundless refuge of thought, laughter and friendship.  Realizing that you are not a solitary coyote howling at the moon is a powerful thing.  Knowing that others also see the empire as it decays, just under a fresh coat of paint — that knowledge is empowering.

Arthur Gilroy wrote once about the power of blogs, comparing them to jazz.  And too, comparing how jazz was ultimately sold out to the powers that be, as the blogs ultimately must be — under our system of order.  But that diary recognized the beauty in humanity coming together.  To share wild thoughts.  The world was not always this way.  Will not always be this way.  Fundamental change is possible.  Such beauty in sharing these thoughts in a group.  And such power.

One day, I read a diary about a woman going to Crawford.  Another day, I was on a trip to D.C. to be inspired by a half a million souls (Sept. ’05 — and if the media tells you one man less, spit in their eye and call them a liar).  The next day, I am embarking on a full year of honest, hard work as an activist.  In a few short months, I am leading dozens of volunteers into the streets.  To challenge power locally.  I’ve held a mother who donated her son.  I’ve cried while addressing an assembly of like minded citizens.  All inspired by the jazz that flows from the voices of this very site.  There is no power like people coming together — to witness it in the real world — it is a thing of beauty.  A power to make your voice quiver and crack.  To suck emotion right out of you and into the air.

And you people here (you know who you are) know that power.  You started the blogs abuzz a bit.  Operation Yellow Feather.  Petals for Peace.  It was all cummulative and good.  All from this community.  This family as it were.

There were mornings when I awoke and believed The Booman Tribune was at the tip of the revolution.  And perhaps it was.  Or perhaps I was a fool.  Or something in the middle, more likely.  This place, for me, for some several moments, held the promise of actually making an impact on the world.  That people actually held some power.


In my own experience of what the pond is, or was, it all started to fall apart a bit right around the time SusanHu left.  Hard feelings.  Splits among a formerly united band.  Is this the way with left-leaning groups?  The cliched way.  Too independent to get along for long, before breaking over heartfelt issues.

When Ductape somehow became something of an enemy, my own spirit died a little.  Honestly.  The man assisted in bringing the Indiana Legislature to heel on women’s issues, if my memory serves.  Just how did we sacrifice our ally?

And on and on.  What had been a movement to me, perhaps only of my own invention and imagination, had become a soap opera.

It is ironic to me, that the end of Super and Alohaleezy seems to come based on a dust-up involving Military Tracy (and I have only a most limited understanding of these matters — not overly concerned with reading every comment that might better explain the nature of today’s proceedings — so forgive me my misunderstandings).  Tracy, to some extent the motivation for me to view the blogs as a revolutionary tool.  Super, a voice for peace, similarly inspired.

It is almost enough to make one laugh.  Were it not a sad end to promise.


Me.  I am a lurker again.  A watcher of soap operas.  And commentaries.  And beautiful words.  Ocassionally, I am so moved as to write a few thoughts in response.  Or a whole fucking diary.  Often, I am moved and do not write a single syllable.  As is a reader’s wont.

But you people here.  You now make me feel like a prince.  I am no longer an alienated individual.  Alone, watching a once great nation on its paces toward the grave.  I look to the right.  To names as familiar as childhood friends.  And I read what moves me.  How uncannily the movie “Children of Men” predicts our future.  How war with Iran is just a Gulf of Tonkin away.

To write is a violation of my particular parole.  A pledge made to those concerned for my well being.  No mortal danger.  Just concern.  Over concern, I’d say.  But I’ve made promises.  That I am still moved to break.  Because who does not like to feel like a prince among friends.

I’ll leave with these thoughts.

Recent events at Daily Kos make me believe Arthur Gilroy’s warning about how blogs will become tools of less power than that deserved for the voices of united men and women.  There, voices are increasingly silenced by gatekeepers.  It is one square foot that has been truly sanitized for the safety of John Kerry and Hillary Clinton.

It is my fervent hope that The BooMan Tribune continues to be a community.  A family.  A place for isolated voices to find comfort and kinship.  To that end, I join Steven D. in lamenting the loss of my friends Supersoling and Alohaleezy.  May we always welcome back the prodigal.  To be nourished by their words.  To provide comfort for their isolation.

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