Today is the first birthday of The Political Sword. Tomorrow it will be beyond infancy. The first piece on TPS was a welcome message on 13 September 2008, followed the next day by a piece on the hot topic of the time In search of the political Holy Grail – the Rudd Government narrative. [more]
But I started blogging before that. In June 2008, irritated by the way journalists seemed to borrow phrases, ideas and stories from each other ad nauseam, I wrote a piece Is the media in Australia suffering from groupthink? Having got my annoyance off my chest, and wondering how I might get it published, I emailed Possum asking where I might send it. In his reply he indicated that he was thinking of adding to his Possums Pollytics website a section for such pieces and that he would make my piece the first post on what he called The Possum Box. I am most grateful for the start Possum gave me. I was surprised to get about 30 comments. The first two were from Just Me and Janice, who have been regulars ever since. Thank you both.
Over the next couple of months I sent several pieces to The Possum Box, and got a good response. Encouraged by this, when my IT professional son-in-law offered me an off-the-shelf blog engine to set up my own blog-site, I grasped it eagerly. Having had years of experience with a medical website, I felt able to manage the new site which I christened The Political Sword – with the strap-line: For putting politicians and commentators to the verbal sword.
Since then I have posted over 130 pieces. Many regulars have followed the posts and have made hundreds of thoughtful and at times detailed comments. Bushfire Bill has been one of the most regular contributors, making comprehensive well-informed comments that have been greatly appreciated by me and other bloggers. Thank you BB.
May I thank all respondents for their comments, always courteous, thoughtful and informative. As a result the site has taken on a style of its own which is rather unique. There have been almost no unpleasant comments, and none of the ranting biased remarks that are commonplace on many blogs run by the newspapers, and in particular blogs run by some way-out journalists.
Looking back through the postings, many have been about Malcolm Turnbull, starting on 19 September, shortly after he became leader, with Will the real Malcolm Turnbull please stand up? followed by The Turnbull Report Card 10 days in, then Malcolm’s at it again. Next came The genius in the Opposition, Turnbull’s benchmarks for failure, Why does Malcolm Turnbull make so many mistakes?, Opposition ship docks for repairs and What is Malcolm Turnbull up to? Then there were The Turnbull answer to the Rudd essay, The Turnbull Twist, Dear Malcolm, Why is Malcolm Turnbull so unpopular?, The curious case of the man who forgot the GFC, Stop at nothing – Malcolm Turnbull’s fatal flaw?, the heavily satirical piece after the OzCar affair Don’t blame me,Turnbull in a China shop, The Turnbull endgame?, The Turnbull reply to the latest Rudd essay, Brendan Nelson says leadership is everything - how does Malcolm Turnbull rate? and more recently A state of unhealthy denial afflicts the Coalition, The fatal march of the fiscal lemmings and The dark art of opposing. The reason for this preoccupation is that Malcolm Turnbull has drawn attention to himself in the worst possible way, and thereby has repeatedly invited comment. There is little in these pieces that would warrant rewriting in the light of events over the last twelve months.
Links to other sites
To make the site more useful to visitors, some additional features have been added. Links to these are in the right column under ‘site pages’. Clicking Blog Watch leads to a page where thirty of the most popular political blog-sites related to federal politics are listed, thirteen of which are updated regularly, many daily. The idea behind this is to provide a convenient conduit for visitors to most of the commonly visited political blog-sites, including links to many individual items at those sites.
There are also four links to the websites of the four parties, where bulletins are posted regularly by each party: Government Watch, Liberal Watch, Nationals Watch and Greens Watch.
Finally, there is Sword Watch where all postings to The Political Sword are listed in reverse chronological order. Each is linked to the relevant piece. There is a brief description of the piece and the date of posting.
I hope visitors have found the site interesting and informative. I appreciate all the effort put into the comments made by the scores who have chosen to make a contribution. I have responded as often as I have been able. I hope you will continue to visit The Political Sword. Your comments will always be welcome.
Although it is but one among many, collectively I believe such political blog sites contribute to political discourse in this country and may influence some of the mainstream journalists and commentators towards more objective and balanced reporting and expressions of opinion.
To mark this occasion the colours of the site have been changed.