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February 24, 2005

In the Future, Everyone Will Have a Blog For Fifteen Minutes

Actually, that's sort of happening now. There are eight bazillion blogs that contain only a name and a single post, generally titled, "Test."

But...

It's beginning to get out of hand. The newest Johnny-Come-Latelies? Congressmen:

AS he stood inside the National Cathedral at President Reagan's funeral last June, Representative Mike Pence, Republican of Indiana, typed a stirring message into his BlackBerry.

"My wife and I stand amidst the most powerful people in the world," it read. "We have stood beside presidents and princes, prime ministers and leaders of every stripe but that is not what moved us these past two hours. There was the undeniable presence of the Spirit of the Lord in this place and it was a sweet presence." As hymns echoed through the cathedral, "the casket swept by to our right, and tears filled my eyes."

Later that afternoon, that message was posted on Mr. Pence's blog. "We got wonderful feedback," he said in a recent interview.

Blogging, the Web-based craft of diary-keeping and commentary, is taking root on Capitol Hill.

The nonprofit Congressional Management Foundation, which helps educate Congress on running its business, says at least four members - Mr. Pence; Representatives Mark Kirk, Republican of Illinois, and Katherine Harris, Republican of Florida; and Senator Patrick J. Leahy, Democrat of Vermont - have taken up the task on a continuing basis. (Others have used temporary blogs to document trips, said Brad Fitch, the foundation's deputy director.)

The Congressional bloggers praise the power, popularity and potential of blogging, citing it as one of the most frequently visited parts of their Congressional Web sites.

"It shows your constituents that you're going to be updating your Web site regularly, and the next time they log on, they will see something new," Mr. Kirk said.

Here's a little quiz: When the New York Times wants to list three popular blogs, just to let you know what a "blog" is, who do you think they mention?

Any ideas? Take a guess.

While popular political blogs like Wonkette, MyDD and Daily Kos serve as an alternative to traditional news sources and allow their authors to purvey commentary...

Whooo! I did not see that coming. Did any of you?

Thanks to a tipper who seems to have a governmental address, so I won't name him. I will just call him "Mr. X."

Update on Mike Pence: A reader I won't identify praises Rep. Pence:

Mike Pence is a a Hugh Hewett gone to Washington basically. Mike had a radio show when he was back here in Indiana and he echoes a lot of our views. I bet if you met Pence you'd like him. He's a first class guy with a great sense of humor, intelligence and conservative views...

Duly noted, sir!


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posted by Ace at 04:55 PM

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