It’s way past time for another thread for all the lurkers out there. I don’t think we’ve had one since the holidays.
You may already know this, but when you post your first comment, it goes into moderation, and sometimes it takes a while for one of us to see it and free your comment so it shows up for everyone. Once it’s released from moderation, it goes into the comments with the time-stamp for when you first submitted it, so then most people probably never see it. So it’s not surprising that first comments often don’t get replied to.
So here’s a special open thread where I can keep a particular eye out for first comments that go into moderation.
A few of you who poked your heads up on previous lurker threads have turned into commenters, but don’t let that scare you away!
In any case, it’s lurker appreciation day here on Balloon Juice! Welcome, all.
Totally open thread.
Do I get a prize?
Happy Lurker Appreciation Day.
Come on in, the water’s warm!
I fully expected to see Baud’s comment in the #1 slot.
A Ghost to Most
I’m good, thanks. I prefer to mix it up, and there are far better places, with far more feisty opponents.
Keep on keeping on.
Not exactly a lurker, just an infrequent commenter who’s watched a certain episode here over the last few days, notes it never really resolved, thinks it may be appropriate to attempt a resolving synthesis, and it should be a conversation starter.
1. Premise: you have conceived a virtual utopia, where (your words) “we [folks you think deserving] won.”
2. Without clearly stating that premise, you introduced the utopia to us with opaque language and by directing us to links which, by your own admission, are not in final form, and which baffled many of us to a degree which suggests that even in final form those links will not ensure willing participation in your virtual utopia. I have not opened those links. My understanding is that your virtual utopia is a moral playpen where good prevails somehow. I’m troubled that the mechanics of this assume doubtful absolutes: literally ALL (your term) samurai, Swiss, commonwealth members, etc. ALWAYS behave impeccably according to your moral algorithm.
3. You introduced all of this by asking this group to consider “a tough nut to crack,” which after a very long time you finally revealed was asking for our help in finding a way to reach some obscure “general,” in order to compel him to “validate [a term from an even later thread]” your virtual utopia. Some of us may have missed this because …
4. Along the way, some of us responded to you, often perplexed, sometimes offhandedly. Your own response to that — that you have devoted immense effort and resources into something we should get behind — runs into a basic problem: we’re not likely to get behind it A) because it literally doesn’t exist, it’s an imaginary utopia which doesn’t directly affect anything and, like utopias do, is purpose built on sometimes questionable assumptions, and B) because you’ve made very clear that this is YOUR playpen and that you’ve decided, without a polite, coherent invitation, that we belong in it whether we like it or not.
This is not a set of facts rising from an ordinary train of thought.
That’s why some of us have expressed concern for how that train of thought came about.
I hope this comment both gives you some perspective on what you’ve done here recently, and suggests that, even for some jackalness, BJ is a good place for what looks to me like some form of breakdown. You are loved and respected here as much or more than anywhere else.
Unless this is an elaborate RPG scam, in which case go fuck yourself.
Hi Watergirl. As you know I’m not a lurker but I don’t think I’ve posted from this device since the new blog was set up after the disaster a few months back (I’m at work, shhhhh). So this is a great time for me to get myself all set up to post from work.
@HeleninEire: Oh, it worked…never mind!
I pretty much never comment, but I enjoy the site. Thanks to everyone!
The Other Bob
Are replies sent to moderation too? I have a commented recently, which went fine, but replies seem to vanish.
More or less a lurker as I mostly just read the pieces, especially the Ukraine reports and the various collections of tweets. I’ll have an update soon as we had a protest in Philly Friday and I write a whole piece using the photos as paragraph breaks.
@Steve: Same here!!!
@Rich Gardner: You’re in Philly? Me too! Philloids of the world unite, and all praise to Gritty!
Not a lurker but I don’t post all that much because (1) I’m a teacher and don’t necessarily have time during the school day to be blogging, and (2) I’m on the west coast and by the time I get up, shower, feed and walk the dog most of the morning posts are stale because of all you east coasters who are doing your morning posting 3 hours earlier while I’m still in bed.
Actually, Sebastian has named the general he wants to get in touch with: retired Lt.-General Mark Hertling. I’m not convinced, though, that LTG Hertling would take him any more seriously than we have.
Lurker from the Chicago area, always start my day reading the site & especially appreciate the covid & Ukraine news drops. Hi, everybody!
I don’t post here as often as I used to. Partly because I’m forcing myself to work on a political non-fiction book. BRB.
P.S. shout-out to any and all of us surviving in DeSantis’ Hellhole (aka Floriduh).
TBH i always assumed the lack of responses was because y’all hated me!
I’m a 99% lurker. BJ has always been my blog homepage. Way, way back in the day, I started reading Andrew Sullivan’s blog. It took me a while to parse out that he was not a reliable narrator (it finally hit me when he said something along the lines of Thank God Al Gore wasn’t president when 9-11 happened. What a maroon.) But it led me to this place, and this place led me to Lawyers, Guns, and Money, Charlie Pierce, Digby. I have received much mental sustenance, and I’ve found comfort in knowing there are smart (and sometimes funny) folks in the world who care about regular people and who get angry when the bad guys get the upper hand.
Colorado lurker here. I have a problem that I hope someone here can help me solve. I want to donate to Adam Frisch of Colorado…the man who lost narrowly to Boebert and to Jon Tester (Mt). However I swore I would never donate again because I was inundated with texts from candidates from all over the country… Warnock was particularity annoying toward the end, especially after I had already given to him. (I don’t live in Georgia, either. I’ve contacted both the state and national Democrats and they are no help at all. Candidates’ sites are behind a paywall…so to speak. I’ve tried blocking phone numbers, but as you probably know already that doesn’t work.
Does anyone know how I can legally donate anonymously?
That’s putting it a lot more kindly than I did in my head when he finally told us that’s what he wanted.
TBH I don’t know what the hell is going on with the guy, but I’m really hoping he doesn’t bring this shit back here. His comments were starting to make me uncomfortable and pushing me away from the threads (which his bullshit would cause to be about him). It started to feel like we were all being forced into becoming unwilling voyeurs and I don’t appreciate that.
Oh, we do, it’s just every eight or nine months or so we pretend we don’t.
Always glad to read from lurkers. How long have you been reading BJ?
What makes you stick around?
Mostly a lurker here, but a very regular reader. My spouse (Ariobarzanes) is even more of a lurker, although we did do an On the Road post in 2021.
Why not post a comment?
i was confused by Sebatian’s initial post, until i came to the name Ignatius Loyola. Jesuit-educated, i moved on to the next post.
Loyola instituted a lot of complex, meaningless stuff. fortunately during the 20th century a lot of that was swept aside. our poster seems ready to pick up the pieces and scotch-tape them back together.
ETA: i might have confused him with someone else: Ignatius J. O’Reilly. Not Loyola, Sebastian.
@Carol: IIRC, your donation must be $19.99 or less to be anonymous.
ETA: easiest to be anonymous if the contribution is in cash.
Retired Roswell Letter Carrier
Be nice or I’ll go postal with my Martian buddies at the senior center. Been lurking since around the time Lily found John. I’ve maybe commented 2-3 times over the years but I lurk every day. I like the mix of topics and front pagers here. Please keep it up.
A woman from anywhere (formerly Mohagan)
@Mr. Longform: I think I followed pretty much the same journey from Andrew Sullivan to here, in the same time frame. (GWBush). Great minds think alike 😉
Not really a lurker, but I like to think I coined the phrase “drive-by commenter”, because I often can’t stick around long enough to get into the flow of things after an initial drop in. Have no idea how long I’ve been coming here, but BJ has been my homepage for years, and I check in many times a day.
@andy: It is hard sometimes when you post a comment and it gets no replies. It happens to most of the commenters. Don’t stop commenting, though, if you feel like posting a comment. Just think of all the jackals and lurkers who read it but don’t comment on it. Most people read all the comments but not everyone replies.
And jackals don’t hate other commenters, AFAIK. We all are too busy pontificating about all the things we feel compelled to pontificate about. 😉
@Carol: Create an email account to use as your junk mail account. Only use it when asked for an email when making a donation.
As for a phone number I wouldn’t give to anyone who wanted it. I don’t answer my phone any longer until I know who is calling due to all the robocalls.
Sounds like an extension of the methodology of the Chicago school of economics* to the social-moral sphere. Though many of those economists already insist that their results should be used to structure society and define morality…
* Assume that all humans have perfect information and act to maximize value at all times, and also have the exact same idea of what constitutes value. It’s blatantly false, but without that assumption the math doesn’t work.
Sometimes a comment can be so perfectly insightful, so well phrased, and so brilliantly witty, that it’s just impossible to make an equally cromulent reply. At least, that’s what I tell myself.
Hi! Former 100% lurker, now 99% lurker, just saying hello.
Watch out. That may be from Baud! peeing in the pool.
@brendancalling: Allentown here. We have Gritty’s sad love child, Melvin (Phantoms mascot).
I tend to be a B-52 pilot on this site, dropping a load and then disappearing.
@andy: the problem is the regulars talk to each other, and don’t know what to do with visitors to their church sitting in their pew.
I’m not a lurker, exactly, but I don’t comment more than a couple times a month, although I read almost every day. I’ve been coming here ever since the Terry Schiavo situation.
You can’t. The best you can do is to take advantage of unsubscribe links in the inevitable spam. I’ve said before, I think ActBlue needs to make it possible to opt out (of spam and having your info sold to other candidates) when you make your donation with some real penalties to candidates who violate the rules. The sheer volume of spam I get is enough to make me reluctant to donate, and I’m sure I can’t be the only one. I’d be freer with my donations if I didn’t have to worry about it.
Welcome lurkers! Although I haven’t been around in a few days, I think, and didn’t know what the above described kerfuffle was about. Every once in a while, here on the west coast, I post in the morning thread right after I’ve woken up. Otherwise, like Kent said, I often find I’m several posts and 300+ comments behind when I get going in the morning. But this place is a daily refuge for me regardless of whether I’m posting.
@rikyrah: I’ve lost count of the years… I started looking in here and there after JC officially bailed on the RW (which I read about on other Iraq War-related blogs (inter-blog gossip was pretty common once upon a time). BJ is now a regular stop for me, although I could probably count the number of comments I’ve left on the fingers of one hand. I’m not anti-social per se, it’s just that I’m a touch OCD about what I publish, even under a nym: does it contribute to the discourse? Is it well-thought-out? Are there any glaring typos? And most importantly: do I feel like debating or expanding on whatever point I’m making?
Yes, I’m almost certainly overthinking it, lol, but “I yam what I yam.”
At any rate, I stick around because I enjoy John’s curmudgeonly take on life, the pets, the politics/activism, the (mostly) positive vibes, and the dedication of the front pagers.
@Amir Khalid: You are right! It’s just too intimidating to reply to all of the erudition and humor on display here.
Very occasional commenter here. I live in France and the time difference means that I mostly arrive after threads have died. I visit the site daily, and read most of the threads and the comments, thus feeling like I know some nyms here better than I know some of my colleagues in real life. It’s a bit frustrating as sometimes I really want to join a conversation, but what can you do?
So I’ll use this opportunity to say hi to Suzanne, with whom I never intersect, as a fellow Valley of the Sun native of my generation, who shares all of my opinions of AZ politics (whenever she posts about Sinema or Gallego, I always nod along). Another commenter (possibly Humboldt Blue? I can’t remember) shares my love of the Aubrey/Maturin novels. And I appreciate all the regulars and front-pagers from whom I learn so much, and who help me phrase and formulate my thoughts more coherently in my various exchanges about politics and current events.
This turned into some weird sounding thank-you/acceptance speech. I will go back to mostly lurking now.
@joey5slice: Hello and welcome!
Hello, all! Another regular reader, but usually only comment on pet posts and such. I appreciate the collective political and legal knowledge here!
Hello to all Lurkers!
Never feel that your comments are wasted. I read every single one of them, and I’m far from alone in that.
@Tony Jay: I should say that I always rub my hands with glee whenever I see you’ve posted one of your screeds. I always enjoy sharing some of your more creative turns of phrases with Mr. Asparagus Aspersions.
Sometimes I lurk, sometimes I comment, and always enjoy BJ.
Hey, regulars, is this the best thread in which to trash other commenters? I thought the point was that we want lurkers to choose to become commenters.
I love the Aubrey/Maturin novels, and I think there are others here who do also.
Thanks for dragging me out of the shadows and forcing me to come up with a Nym, WaterGirl. Sorry mine is a cheap copy-but speaks to my location and lifestyle in the central Colorado Rockies.
I came across BJ around a year ago due to a link in comments to a NYT story on the UKR invasion. Thanks to Adam for his tireless efforts to share this important news here daily.
I have become a daily reader of Adam’s posts and others as time allows.
As was succinctly stated above by Mr Longform:
“I have received much mental sustenance, and I’ve found comfort in knowing there are smart (and sometimes funny) folks in the world who care about regular people and who get angry when the bad guys get the upper hand.”
Thanks for dragging me out of the shadows and forcing me to come up with a Nym, WaterGirl. Sorry mine is a cheap copy-but speaks to my location and lifestyle in the central Colorado Rockies.
I hope to post something (else) someday-I guess this is a start.
Hi!. Laughing is good.
@Alison Rose: I’ve never used it, but this sounds like it might be a good use of the pie filter (is that still a thing?). Mmm, pie…
comment away and don’t worry if no one seems to respond. Lots of people read the comments and very few respond to them.
Just think of it as unappreciated genius.
Semi-lurker from Sin CIty. Got drawn into jackaltown after catching Cole’s righteous rants about the Schaivo affair. I try to participate, but my brain is wired differently (I assume I’m on spectrum but have never been tested) and I don’t always express shit clearly. I keep coming back because Frankensteinbeck and Martin always seem to perfectly wordsmith any thoughts I might have on any particular subject.
@rikyrah: been reading since the lead up to 2016 election. The same views of the world, or at least (usually) compressibly insane views. Cooking. Animals.
i have been lurking around here going back to the tunch era, and always read the covid and ukraine posts and discussions, but never ended up participating here, for whatever reason.
As a fellow fan of the asparagus, I thank you for your kind words. With the state of our sadly bedevilled isle and zero hope of improvement this decade, there’s sure to be more rants aplenty coming.
Whoops posted twice-technology is SO confusing.
feel free to moderate this away please…
So sorry to everyone waiting to be approved! Right after I put this post up, I had a work emergency to deal with for a client.
Approving comments now!
@HeleninEire: You are definitely not a lurker! New toy?
Longtime mostly lurker here. I comment once in awhile. But I’ve been reading since Obama’s first campaign. This place is educational, and I love all of the heart of both front pagers and commenters.
@The Other Bob: Can you tell me more about the vanishing replies?
Lurker longtime, chime in on AZ stuff and anytime that ahole Tucker comes up, went to school with him and knew him, can’t stand what he’s done.
thank you all and Cole for this space
@Rich Gardner: ooh. Protest for what? We could do a post with your info and pictures.
@Sorryforlaughing: Hello! What are you sorry for laughing about? :-)
@andy: Yeah, that can be tricky when you start commenting. It can feel like you’re being ignored. People don’t always reply to comments the they like or appreciate, so then how are you supposed to know?
@Carol: Yes and no. If you can be patient, I can make an ActBlue thermometer for him. Since I discovered the option last fall, all of our BJ thermometers are set up to default to NOT sharing your info with the candidates unless you click to say you want to.
Will that work for you?
I’m not a lurker so I’m not going to comment.
@Athenaze: I don’t think of you as a lurker because you participated in the Adam Schiff book threads, right?
@Chi-J: Comment more, lurk less. That’s what I always say.
@Retired Roswell Letter Carrier: New people are always welcome!
Oy gevalt. My belated condolences.
@joey5slice: Hello! Aiming for 98%?
Check out my comment at #70.
@The Ithacan: Welcome!
Quite a few long timers coming out today, I got here via Sullivan also. Occasional commenter, daily reader.
@Omnes Omnibus: Thank you for that. I have been thinking the same thing, but biting my tongue.
Apparently we’re not on our best behavior for company today. :-)
I read this site a lot and appreciate the curation/accumulation of links to worthwhile content, especially in this age of misinformation that takes up so much bandwidth ..this function alone is a real timesaver. I’ve contributed pet pics to multiple calendars, usually my sister’s or daughter’s fur kids since I can’t have pets where I’m at. I comment infrequently but it’s usually to Baud because I know he needs the hits.
@MountainBoy: I can totally relate to you and your nym, with your love of mountains.
If you had chosen MountainMan, that would have conjured up a different picture altogether!
I don’t have much to donate to various causes, causes that I know are worthy, and when I do send what is generally a small amount, I am often sorry I did so, as that small donation is often the start of a process that I’m sure cost the organizations more than the amounts I’m able to give. When they target me with mailers asking for more, I’m sure that process involves more time, money and energy spent than my small donations can offset. For that reason alone I’ve cut way back my donations.
Just another demonstration that charity can never be the appropriate solution to systemic injustices. All the time and energy, (not to mention the inevitable grifting), wouldn’t be an issue if we would just fix the problems instead of thinking ‘charity’ can be substituted for an actual solution
To address political donations, publicly funded elections is the solution, not trying to ‘fix’ the donation process.
@Rachel Bakes: Cooking animals, that’s terrible! :-)
Hi! Move towards 90%, OK?
@WaterGirl: But you never put up a “trash other commenters” thread…
@wu ming: Now that you’ve poked your head out, you can keep commenting.
@Tdjr: I recognize your nym for sure.
@SmallAxe: Oh, we would love to hear stories about what an awful person Tucker was!
I’m a regular down among the Dead Threads. Mostly I post excerpts from my screenplay and boy that thread stays Dead.
@Carol: You can mail donations if you have a checkbook.
Or send a money order.
@Jim Appleton: I have no idea what this is about, but the second-to-last line is… muwah!
@WaterGirl: Well, it does say “totally open thread,” so… ;-)
@Old School: And I never will! Except perhaps a roast Baud or Omnes thread. That could possibly happen. :-)
@Betty Cracker: Ha! I didn’t think that “be nice in front of the new folks” had to be said out loud, but I will now know better for next time. :-)
@WaterGirl: the alumni groups (Trinity College) have been crazy last several years with a current black President and not only Tucker but Jesse Watters being alumna as well and old money choosing their side and threatening to withhold donations. Tucker was pretentious prick you see today back then, wore a bow tie to some poli sci classes we shared smh. Took him 5 or 6 years to graduate too. Definitely was in the party crowd, never saw him do blow myself but know others that did but won’t come forward. He sucks
I’m a lurker, but I do read BJ pretty much every day. Part of it is that by the time I read it, the East Coasters have already said everything I thought. And part of it is that I’m not quite witty enough to hold my own against the smart folks here.
@Carol, could you just send a check? So they’d have your name but not your email address – and potentially not even your street address, if you blacked that out on the check. (Is that legal? I mean you’re making a donation with your name, city, and state, even if not your full address.)
I’ve been reading Balloon Juice for years but I don’t think I’ve ever commented. This and Lawyers, Guns, Money are the only two political blogs I’m still reading regularly. I appreciate the optimism and calls to action here in addition to the thoughtful opinions and analysis.
Needs more dogs
I’ve been lurking for more years than I care to confess. I really value all the front pagers and the commenters. Y’all help bring clarity to a murky world. Also dogs and cats.
@brendancalling: Philloids? That’s even stranger than Delawarewolves.
handy guideline to interpret no response to a comment on Balloon Juice:
no response: you’re good! no need to elaborate on what you’ve said, a nice succinct cogent thought that is always appreciated.
pointed no response: you’ve caused eyebrows to arch and gotten to the point where you almost had someone snark back at you, but because you’re new, you go into the double secret probation bucket
awkward no response: you keep using those words, but we don’t think it means what YOU think it means….
loud no response: ummmm….. somebody farted?
agreeable no response: sure, we agreed, but you know… we’re jackals and we’re simply not that easy.. well some of us aren’t that easy… maybe
A late night Jill Biden thread. Here it is.
my favorite day,
I am very grateful for all the front pagers and the knowledge that is dropped on the site, it makes me a smarter person and a more importantly a better human. We kicked ass last election cycle, lets make it 2 for 2. Thanks all you guys rock!!
I seldom comment but I’ve been meaning to express my appreciation for you, Watergirl. You keep this blog going through rain and snow and dark of pixels. Medium Cool has pointed me towards hours of entertainment and let me find my husband’s favorite show ever, Bosch. Betty Cracker, you too are one of the engines of this place plus you are a hoot and a half. I learn so much from Adam. So this mostly lurker appreciates right back at you fine group of jackals.
Sister Golden Bear
I don’t believe so. But…. you can create Gmail account that you use solely for making donations. All the subsequent spamming goes there, and you don’t need to ever check that account unless you want to.
@MountainBoy: Don’t let your standards stop you from posting. Mine never have.
@Cjcat: Yes to all this. And insurance info from David Anderson. Comments from Ruckus. Bons mots from NotMax. Everything Baud. Many others but will leave some for the next lurker thread.
Sister Golden Bear
@The Lodger: Balloon Juice has standards like Baud has pants. That’s to say, none. OK, almost none.
@Sister Golden Bear: kinda like we have pants, but we don’t always choose to “wear” them… so to speak…
@SmallAxe: Uck. Seriously? People are upset that their Alma Mater has a black president? Wow, fragile little things, they are.
Odie Hugh Manatee
This is my last comment from this email address and my next comment will be moderated because I am changing that address now. This one is an old Yahoo one that I quit using years ago and the one I am using here is to our private email server (ooh!) that we’ve been running for the last nine years.
I’m a slacker… I shall return!
@WaterGirl: Bet that’s not the STATED reason, but it’s probably the reason after all.
Lurkers and new commenters should not feel daunted by receiving no replies. There are many of us who read avidly but don’t reply to everything we like.
Occasionally I feel miffed when some especially insightful comment of mine drops into the void, but then I remind myself of the time that someone mentioned being affected by something I had written months before. You never know the effect your words will have, but it’s always more than if you had not written at all.
@rockstar: Yeah, at our best Balloon Juice can be like being at a party with really smart and interesting people. Every day.
@Cjcat: I love your description of Betty, it’s perfect. A hoot and a half!
Lurk less, comment more!
Odie Hugh Manatee
This is my new email addy WaterGirl! Also, thank you very much for the email forward. I’ve contacted AR via email and am arranging a time to talk that is convenient for them.
Back to slacking for a bit…
And that’s it, already? Wow, you are on top of it! 👍
@Odie Hugh Manatee: I will watch for it! Now would be a good time.
@Sister Golden Bear: FTR I am usually wearing pants.
Odie Hugh Manatee
Ah, a Romulan cloaking device, perhaps?
@KrackenJack: No to be used with Baud’s pants, though.
I’ve moved from a commenter to more of a lurker due to my work schedule.
A week or so ago I put up a post called Kitty Origin Stories. I seeded the post with own story of my beloved kitty soulmate.
The post got 73 comments, but not one single comment was about my story! Did anyone read what I wrote? I have no idea.
That’s the way it goes here sometimes, and it happens to everyone.
Hey, that’s my schtick! :-)
@Omnes Omnibus: No one will confuse you with Baud that way.
@MountainBoy: I like your nym. Mine, on the other hand, is patheticly uncreative.
@🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Why else would I do it?
Another long-time reader (just after Schaivo) and occasional commenter. I, too, usually get so far behind that I have to skip the comments and just read the front-page posts, which is a shame because the comments are so good here. While there may be some spice, in general the discussions are no more heated than you’d get over a dinner table. With the occasional thrown roll. And such a wide breadth of experience! I try to get friends to check it out, but I never hear back if they’ve visited or not. Hmmm… Also, another PO’B fan– former submarine Quartermaster (navigation, not supply) which makes me a sucker for a nautical tale. Hornblower was instrumental in me joining the Navy.
@Odie Hugh Manatee: It wasn’t me. :-) Maybe Betty? Or maybe you posted with this new address once before, and one of us belatedly approved it? In which case this would have sailed right through.
Love all y’all
i probably missed info posted here about this, in any case, Maze Dancer has downloadable postcard designs for the Wisconsin Supreme Court Election April 4
@Odie Hugh Manatee: My theory was corrected, but the timing was off. In June of 2018 you posted a comment with your “new” address. That’s what it sailed through right away just now.
@BlueGuitarist: Thanks for posting that!
Odie Hugh Manatee
I’ve contacted John and other with my current addy so maybe someone entered it into the db. Either way, I’m free!
Or at least heavily discounted… I’m old product. ;)
Aah, must have been an early senior moment..lol!
Hey all – I’ve been visiting this site for goodness knows how long (probably around 2008), but mainly lurk. I’m based in Australia, which means the posts are posted and all the good comments commented while I’m asleep. Still, it’s a pleasure reading you all.
Not sure why today’s the day, but here I am. Californian, almost officially retired and looking forward to whatever’s next. I was regularly lurking by the 2016 election cycle and have stayed a regular because people here make it truly worth the time. Spent 14 years taking care of hundreds of native CA wild creatures, great and small, raised a bunch of furred, feathered, and scaled babies. An orphaned badger rode shotgun with me back and forth to work in my TR6. No personal experience handling jackals but am dead familiar with coyotes. So, hey there!
Odie Hugh Manatee
We do have somewhat of a night crew here so hang around!
Thanks for the LGM link. Had forgotten about that site. Think I found it originally from a Digby or Atrios blogroll.
Dorothy A. Winsor
No response? Lots of times, I’m just skimming through the comments. I like lots of stuff, but I don’t have anything to add. No response doesn’t mean disapproval
Hi. Long time lurker, love the show. Really appreciate the free-ranging posts and discussions. I’ve been tempted to comment in the past, if just to ask questions and get educated about things. I’ll try to do that from now on.
@Bee Girl: Welcome! Looking forward to future posts from you and anyone who is so inclined!
@Herondo: Welcome! Jump right in. :-)
@RJ: There is often a lively Australian presence in the early morning over here. It’s usually just one person, but she has a lot to say in a lively way.
People aren’t up all night here like they used to be when the Orange Churl haunted their nightmares. But things start picking up after 4am when the early birds start chirping.
Mainly a daily lurker these days, with the occasional (lonely) comment. Over my decade or so of lurking there’s been a few times where I’ve left a flurry of comments over a few days, but mostly I find it not worth the time required to fully engage in a comment thread. Plus, as often as not I’m only reading them after everyone has already moved on.
As I’ve observed previously, I find the domination (and associated groupthink/gatekeeping) of the discussion by a small number of regulars a turnoff and disincentive to active engagement. But I come back because I appreciate the knowledge and expertise of a handful of favourite commenters and front-pagers… and especially the Covid news (thanks Anne Laurie!) and Adam’s nightly Ukraine updates.
Don’t forget the Echoing No Response: You spent hours reading every comment and decide you do indeed have a valuable / pithy / witty insight. However, the thread is deader than a Baptist disco. Bonus points for being several time zones away from Eastern Standard.
OT, but welcome to “liberal” NYC where the mayor just dismissed the notion that there should be a separation between church and state in American society (if my OTR/GC submissions stop, come rescue me!):
I de-lurked the other time you asked, can’t recall exactly when. But I do remember a day or so later I came to the site, and Balloon Juice was nowhere to be found!! It’s when you lost the server or something.
Anyway, I’m back! I’ve been lurking for years, probably since mid-2000s. Came here via ‘Sadly, No’ somehow. I hope to join in more discussions.
Thanks for reaching out to us lurkers :-)
I try to not be unkind, but oh my gosh, Marge thinks she is making the case that Biden isn’t doing anything to stop fentanyl from coming across the border, but she is doing the exact opposite.
Lurker from Vermont here. Been reading BJ since, christ, 2005? 2006? It came on my radar after John broke away from the right because of the Terry Schiavo mess and I’ve stuck around ever since.
I think I’ve commented maybe 10 times? Probably exclusively complaints about the Sanders. Bernie, of course, but also the deep, deep scorn in my household for Jane (wife used to teach at Burlington College).
@KrackenJack: a more than worthy addition to the guidelines! Many Thanks!
I’m in Malaysia. But I have the luxury of keeping very irregular hours if I feel like it.
@Other Suzanne: The Apocalypse. I don’t want to ever go through the again.
Ceci n est pas mon nym
@HeleninEire: Hi! I don’t think I’ve seen your nym in a while.
As it happens, I am currently investigating itineraries in Eire. I’ll wave in your general direction when we get there.
Ceci n est pas mon nym
@Odie Hugh Manatee:
Indeed. I frequently see fascinating conversations that took place around 3 am my time, and I get moved to respond before I remember that the thread has been dead at least a couple of hours and nobody is going to see my pearls of wit and / or wisdom.
@Carol: I’m baffled that you’re having that much trouble. If you donate through ActBlue you wind up getting emails from all kinds of people. I just mark them as spam and they soon stop. I don’t know where the phone calls come from but I block the numbers and it’s done.
Contacting the Dem party in this regard would be pointless because they don’t control emails/phone calls from candidates
What does that even mean?
Currently in tax season lurker status.
Just sent $100 to Wisconsin Dems for their Supreme Court race without needing a matching prompt from Water Girl.
See you all in a bit.
Mostly a lurker, very rare commenter. Will use my little platform here to each that we all need to pay attention to Suzanne’s comments about AZ politics. Spent 40 years there, she knows what of she speaks. Now in Tennessee, so in comparison AZ seems like a veritable liberal paradise in comparison. But I’ll keep plugging here, trying to find more of my people.
@Steeplejack: I’m not sure that adding an upvote button would destroy the peaceful comity that is the BJ comment section <snark>, but it would make it easier to acknowledge a contribution. I
guesswould hope that WP could indicate >2 upvotes, if we are worried about pandering.
Howdy to all the newbies (and not so newbies)! Looking forward to seeing y’all on a more regular basis.
In blog terms, fresh faces are akin to a swig of digital Geritol, stimulating irony-poor blood.
I’ve been lurking here daily since John Cole was a Republican, but I guess today’s the day I take the leap. Actually, I’m sure I’ve posted here once or twice under some long forgotten nym. Love the blog, love the community, have no need to comment since somebody has invariably already said it better than I ever could.
Can always create a separate e-mail account specifically as a location for the unwanted flood which follows a donation to pool.
@ema: State is the body, church is the heart? What does that make you, Eric – the ass?
A glass of wine with you sir!
It’s probably been 10 years since I last read them, but getting close to re-reading I think.
Been lurking since right before Cole decided he was actually a Democrat. Strangely, I came here first because someone mentioned John Cole having been a war blogger, and I thought they were talking about Juan Cole which was confusing, so I thought I check it out.
@L Boom: That’s about how long I’ve been reading BJ as well. 2006 I think. Can’t remember what led me here in the first place, but the content & comments keep me lurking.
I’m due for a reread myself. And probably should collect them all on my Kindle. I gave away a lot of my paperback copies when I was proselytizing.
@EastCoastLiz: Welcome to commenting!
Given the number of people who mention no one responding to their comments, even a reply that says “great point” or “I couldn’t agree more” or “I hadn’t ever thought of it that way, but that makes sense” – or something similar – is always appreciated.
I gave all mine away, thinking I’d read them electronically next time. About 10 years ago, I got my dad a really nice complete set in two hard-bound volumes. I’m thinking once he’s gone I’ll get that set, but he keeps….hanging around. It might be another 10 years!
Gin & Tonic
@WaterGirl: I couldn’t agree more.
@Gin & Tonic: I see what you did there!
Gin & Tonic
@WaterGirl: Shit, it was that obvious?
My brother is a hardcore fan who rereads them more often than I do, and I have occasionally thought of finding a hardbound set for him. Good to know they’re out there.
Or even just a quick Baudlian 👍.
@WaterGirl: OMG I love this. I wish more folks would use the ‘do not contact unless the giver agrees’ option. I’m not sure how ActBlue does it, but I guess there is enough of a paper trail that the donation doesn’t skirt campaign finance ‘laws’ (in scare quotes because of course the rich have all sorts of work-arounds), but doesn’t flood one’s inbox.
Checking in from Portland, Oregon. Still here, fighting a nasty cold. Just enjoying all the “hot air” on this blog!
I just checked – it was a 5-volume set. It’s still on amazon for just under $250.
It’s a nice set, but I’m in the middle of a downsizing/purging/getting ready to retire run, so I’ll probably go electronic next time. I don’t need MORE books right now.
Thanks for the link! I’ll check it out.
Mostly a lurker, but every day reader, too, like someone above said.
I’m old and dense, but I can usually figure stuff out. Not with this Sebastian diatribe? Someone please enlighten me? I know no one will answer, but I tried.
Somebody prolly said this already, but can you put a Like button or something in the comments. I agree with the not commenting because no one will respond. Anyway.
@Tony Jay: I read BBC & Guardian every day & welcome your comments on GB politics….I read Media Whores Online, My Left Wing, Steve Gilliard, Jerome Armstrong, Atrios, etc. back in the day…..Only signed on here at 75 yrs. old, now 80…LOL
@dearmaizie: Give it a try, you’ll get responses, I think, especially if you mention that you’re new to commenting.
Been reading this here upscale blog since just before the missing mustard event. Quite enjoy the majority of the regulars here – although I might be terrified of some of them should I meet them irl. I know that there are a couple of folks who live not too far from me up here in the Maine woods (distance is relative here – if you’ve got relatives here, you’re probably too close to family, imo).
I’ve been away from the internets for the past several weeks – death in the family, lots of shit uncovered, family is weird, and there’s a reason I live in Maine instead of in the midwest… (the only way I could get further away is if I moved overseas). This was the first place I checked back into.
You all have no idea how valuable all your thoughts, real-world experience and tales are to me. Thanks for being around and allowing lurkers to observe some really smart people opine in a safe space filled with critters, gardening, food, books, music and some crazy-funny wit (I’m convinced that Dorothy Parker would be a fan of the jackaltariat).
@Bee Girl: TR-6?!!! Awesome. Former Bugeye Sprite and TR-3 driver here … when they decided to run, that is. After that I had a Miata (from the dealer’s third shipment) for 23 years. All great little cars.
@Seefleur: Not all of us are witty and clever, but I like to think that most of us are good-hearted, and pretty decent company.
Time to de-lurk again. I enjoy this blog because of the vibe and the politics. I started out on the right, voting for Ronald Reagan in 1984, the first election after my 18th birthday. But I have been a quite a journey politically – from Republican to Reform (as I had no use for the Religious Right) to a no party preference to someone who called himself a moderate who leaned right to becoming a democrat. I have to say that prior to 2016 I used to visit quite a number of blogs that covered politics, but this is one of the few that I still visit.
The Sebastian diatribe was from the other night. I’m not sure anyone could make sense of it.
Have lurked since the time of Tunch, the doppelgänger of my late, lamented Cabo, feral rescued from Mexico. Y’all have kept me sane in crazy times. Thanks!
@anitamargarita: Love your nym!
And that’s another reason why I keep reading – there are truly good people here, and it shines through in many ways. The mensch-ness here is incredibly high.
Always read, say little. I enjoy all the front pagers and the commentariat. Everyone is, imho, always helpful and insightful. I thank you all.
I rarely comment but read almost daily. (Sorry, I rarely read deeper than about comment #10 or 15… I got shit to do!) Been coming here for many years and even went to a meetup back when Blogfather was still drinking. This place was one of my pockets of sanity to get through Bush the Lesser. Pretty sure my first comment was recently when I felt compelled to share about https://soaringspirits.org/
I can almost always count on a pithy summary of what is the hot topic du jour, plus I find out about stuff I’d otherwise miss. I use it as my news aggregator. Thanks, Jackals!
I lurk from tokyo. I just read the stories I am interested in and very rarely the comments. I have purposely winnowed down the time I waste on the internet and this is the only political website I read these days. Been lurking since end of the Bush years. Thanks for all the great writing, insight, and links to other interesting content.
I’ve been around here since the days when John was in the midst of switching parties, but I’ve only commented a few times. I’m retired so you would think i have all the time in the world, but alas I don’t. I volunteered for a free clinic (I’m a retired RN) until Obamacare came along, and then I helped start a community radio station and am now heavily involved with that. But I check BJ first thing every morning to see what’s going on and generally read every post.
@WaterGirl: aww, thanks. So much appreciate all you (all of you) do to keep this place going. It covers all my favorites -critters, gardens, books, music, and yeah, politics-I learn so much every time I come here.
Proudly lurking and occasionally commenting on dead threads since Atrios let me know via his blog that John saw the light and de-wingnutted himself.
@andy: don’t feel bad. Most of my responses either get ignored or kill the threads 🤣 So much power!
@The Other Bob: I’ll say they
@frosty: I bought my TR6 new one Easter Sunday when my then husband and I skipped the family dinner and wandered downtown to check out the new British car dealership. Young and foolish maybe but never a regret about my TR. Have held on to it through some bumps in my road. In the midst of a renovation so by summer should be back driving up canyons and down the coastline again. It’ll be glorious!
I think I began reading Balloon juice back during President Obama’s first presidential campaign. Or maybe it was before that when the US attorney stuff was going on during Bush’s second term. For years I was here multiple times a day and read every single comment and every single front page post. I went to several meetups here in the Washington DC area, and in all that time, i possibly commented five times. Because I didn’t really have a need to, as I put it, “hear myself talk,” and I’m usually not funny and somebody already said whatever I would have said, etc., etc.. And then I stopped coming here. I’d check in every now and then, to check out the Sunday morning garden stuff and to see whether John or Betty Cracker had posted anything but didn’t bother to read the comments.
Last year when Russia invaded Ukraine, I was back to read Adam’s posts on the war as well, but still not reading the comments. A couple of months ago I started reading the comments in the few posts I read and started wondering whatever happened to all the commenters I was so used to seeing over the years. And this past Sunday I checked out the Medium Cool post and all the comments and decided I wanted to start spending solid time here again. So it was serendipity to come across this post tonight. I remember the name I used but I can’t remember if I spelled it as one word or two. So maybe I’ll discover that I actually have something to add to the conversation these days.
@WaterGirl: Yes, we read it (it’s Balloon Juice how could we not?) and thank you for sharing.
i was just thinking tonight that this place has been a great resource and comfort—my family of origin votes Republican for ostensibly religious reasons, and it’s good to know and lurk in a community of (mostly) sensible people with good hearts and wisdom to share. It kept away some of the despair during the years of TFG and made it easier to do what we could where we were, knowing we were not alone.
As somebody else remarked, I’ve been lurking here for years, since the days of Tunch. I also used to read the soccer reffing articles to my soccer reffing boyfriend.
I like Daily Kos, but it can definitely sometimes feel apocalyptic. Granted, these have been some bad years, and John has had some wonderfully (and justifiably) epic rants. Still, this place always seems a little more grounded in reality. I’m like “before I freak TF out completely, let’s go see the balloon-juice take.” So thanks, all, for keeping me (relatively) sane through the years.
The BJ commenterverse is a fascinating work in progress. It’s great to see new nyms, and to imagine that some of them will become regulars. Pinksnapdragon and Burrowing Owl already seem like old friends.
Thank you WaterGirl.
I’ve been at work since commenting early to this now dead thread. I get the sense that subsequent comments about “should have said everyone be nice around the newcomers” relates to my original.
I could be mistaken.
If not, my reply is first that new commenters mostly have been lurking for a long time and our etiquette or lack of comes as no surprise. Second, if anything we might expect each other to be polite TO newcomers, but how does stiffening up in general benefit anyone, newcomers especially, in a welcoming?
You read the Brexit Broadcasting Corporation & The FTF Guardian and still enjoy my ranting?
Damn, Lady. You all kinds of eclectic. 8-) Good on Yer.
@Rose Weiss: Wow, starting a community radio station, good for you.
@Pinksnapdragon: Wow, what a progression! Welcome back. :-)
If I were a snapdragon, I would be a yellow one.
That gave me a chuckle. Really nice to hear, too.
@Burrowing Owl: Between votes for Trump, the hatefulness of his 4 years in office, and Covid, it’s been very stressful for family relations. I have a better understanding now of brother against brother fighting in the civil war.
Big thanks to all the lurkers and mostly lurkers who chimed in yesterday, and to the regulars who helped welcome everybody.
We love our lurkers, but after these posts we usually get a few people who will start to comment, and it’s always great to have new voices here!
Lurker, pet calendar participator and sometime dead thread commenter here. I do have a question, tho … since we don’t have a user login for the site or anything, how do I know if someone replied to one of my very occasional comments? The only way I know to do it is to return to the thread, scroll all the way down to mine, then look at every comment that came after to see if someone replied.
The Other Bob
@WaterGirl: My regular posts get posted after the clock runs for a couple minutes. If I reply to someone, I go to post and it is gone never to be seen again.
Thanks for asking this question.
After posting yesterday, I wanted to ask if there is somewhere that I could learn more about how this blog tool thingy works? Specifically including how to follow a conversation/thread to be more efficient in reading and ultimately maybe, just maybe making a comment.
Apparently this thread isn’t dead yet?!?
I came back to this thread again this morning as I found it fascinating to learn about who else is here, why and for how long.
Sheesh, like I need something else to do….. 😳
Maybe I’m a re-lurker. I used to read here daily and then life intervened four or five years ago. Then I got out of the habit of clicking all the blogs on my own blogroll. I’m back to observing this lively crew again.