Thursday, January 19, 2006

THE BLOGGER DILEMMA: One of the first things I learned in journalism, way back in the early 1970s, is that only fools write for free. Nevertheless, nowadays a lot of journalists who aren't fools spend hours churning out blogs without a penny in compensation. Some of them are pretty damn good. Some stink on ice.

Andrew Sullivan comes to mind. (That is, in the "pretty damn good" category.) I've been reading his stuff for years. Andrew Sullivan writes for nothing. So why should I mind writing for nothing?

I also know some journo blogs that stink on ice, and if I get in a bad mood I may write about them as well.

I've heard it said that if H.L. Mencken were alive today, he would be blogging. I'll bet William Shirer, my childhood hero, would have a blog if he were still with us. He was an obsessive diarist, and blogs are diaries -- public diaries.

In addition to all of the above rubbish I have a good, solid, cynically commercial reason to start a blog. My new book Wall Street Versus America is hitting the stores on April 6. So I have several blog-related reasons related to that:
  • First I want to write about some of the issues that will be raised in the book.
  • Secondly I want to update stuff that I put in the book (and, I guess, correct any boo-boos that are brought to my attention, in case there are any, God forbid!).
  • And lastly..... well, this is a new medium, and I've always been fascinated by new media.

I understand that at some point soon the Author's Guild, which hosts my website, will begin blogging capabilities for its authors. When that happens, I shall move this blog over there.

So, enough excuses. On with the blog!

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