What a year 2005 has been. Wish I could say it was a "great year". But it wasn't. Even if it was a "great year" for the blogosphere and the citizen's uprising against both a failed media and a failed administration. I'm sorry to say that America's shame is the blogosphere's gain. I'd be much happier if it weren't the case. I'd be happier still if our government halted its tragically wreckless and misguided foreign policies, cynically and ironically implemented in the name of "national security". I'd be joyous beyond reason if the unprecedented rise and reign of corruption in DC came to an end. And giddy to the point of distraction if the Mainstream Media woke up finally from their five-year slumber and decided to show up to play their vital role as our fourth estate once more. All of which would allow for a welcome retirement from the job I reluctantly find myself doing much less because I want to, and much more because I believe it's necessary.
At the year's very end, I thought it would be interesting to compile a "Best of BRAD BLOG 2005". A list of notable stories, achievements, landmarks, highlights and lowlights. In the process, I was overwhelmed by how much has been recorded on these cyber-pages over the last twelve months. Selecting choices for the "Best of..." list was no easy feat, even if the end result is still a rather hefty compilation of notable stories. I welcome your thoughts on these selections and any additions that you, dear BRAD BLOG readers who have made it all possible, feel should have made it onto this list. As always, all of our archived stories are here for your perusal.
I can't turn the page to 2006 until I've given a proper thanks to the many who have made The BRAD BLOG what it is and The BRAD SHOW what we hope it may soon be. To all the Guest Bloggers, contributors, tipsters and sources (named and otherwise) who have shaped the very character of these pages, I say thank you. To name just a few (and likely to leave too many errantly out!) I'd like to recognize a few folks who have served above and beyond the call of duty here over the past year: "Winter Patriot", David Edwards, John Gideon, John Byrne, "Kira", Brett, Katrina Wilcox, Joseph Cannon, Ben Burch, Jaime Robledo, Kat L'Estrange, Ilene Proctor, Aerielle Louise, Otie McClay, Lydia Cornell and Desiree Doyen. Thank you all several times over. And, of course, without you readers, listeners, emailers, commentors, donators (see how I snuck that in?) and all-around patriotic trouble-makers, I am nothing. So thank you all from the very bottom of my heart.
From Bush's ignominious inaugural and electoral challenge in January...to new revelations in the Clint Curtis story and CNN's duplicitious or just dumb drumbeating for war in February...to Velvet Revolution's launch of a campaign against American Voting Machines companies, a stunning twist in the Curtis case and the appearance of a phony GOP "voting rights" group in March...to a cooked "National Election Reform" commission, a new radio show and the emergence of the "BRAD BLOG 6 or 7" in April...to spiked newspaper columns and outrage on Capitol Hill in March...to meltdowns in Congress and Conyers at the White House gates in June...to whitewashed investigations, censored websites, fired elections workers, a heroic "Blogathon" and the first whiffs of "the I word" in July...to an unexpected trip to Crawford TX to be a witness to history and to "be the media" like never before in August...to Rove shenanigans, disastrous hurricanes, an insider dubbed "DIEB-THROAT" and "nothing at all" happening in D.C. in September...to running Ann Coulter off the air, finding Conservatives who despise her and discovering "faith-based voting" is alive and well in October...to GAO reports corroborating and ignored, staggeringly impossible election results and Ann Coulter lashing back in November...to a remarkable end of the year unraveling of the once-great, now-disgraced company known as Diebold and more election reform panics than one could shake a stick at, much less blog about as fully as it all deserved, in December...2005 has been --- to paraphrase Dubya --- "a heckuva year".
And with that overly long preamble, and having more than a few ideas of what is soon to come in 2006, I hope you now enjoy a look back, if only at a few of the remarkable headlines! --- to the BRAD BLOG year that was 2005...