Monday, December 31, 2012

My Year In Blogs

Happy New Year from Paul and Melissa.

For my faithful (and not so faithful) readers, I wish to send my year's end gratitude.

Though I have "blogged" for years, it was mostly articles defending the military, philosophical essays, history, poetry, short stories, or written accounts of role-playing games. The main reason for restricting the spectrum was my military service. While I was active duty, I made sure that I stayed as apolitical in my writings as I could muster.

I didn't start writing "professionally" until I was officially retired. Even then, I did not do so seriously until the last month or two of 2011. In effect, my blog really didn't take-off until just after CPAC 2012. I watched the convention online and was inspired by several of the speakers. It should come as no surprise that it was Andrew Breitbart's speech that lit the fire under my butt.

When I attended BLOGCON in Charlotte, I found a great support network that helped me to better focus my efforts and improve. That first and greatest node of support came from my then-fiancee and now-wife, Melissa. When I told her I was attending, she told me several times that she was proud of my efforts. She has continued to stand beside me, supporting my efforts. At times I aggravate her since it is rare I take a "day off". Even if I do not publish an article, I am always researching, debating, writing notes, reading, etc.

Meeting several fellow bloggers at BLOGCON was my best move so far. Mandy Nagy, Kurt Schlichter, Brandon Darby, Pamela Geller, Tabitha Hale, "Ex-John", Steve "Vodka Pundit" Green, Michelle Ray, and others too numerous to mention, all personally encouraged me. Each fellow blogger who spoke with me gave me the respect and courtesy of listening as though I had something of value to say. I cannot thank any of you enough.

Several influential people liked some of my articles and promoted (re-tweeted) a few of my most read blogs. Among those people is actor Adam Baldwin whose unexpected support still overwhelms me.

I also must send some thanks to Johnathan Sangster at Toraradical.com for asking me to be a frequent but  somewhat irregular columnist at his site. 

Looking back at some of my past articles, I can easily admit to being long-winded at times. To avoid making this particular article from being even half as long as the PPACA, I cannot name each person who has helped me in the past year. If you have read my articles, tweeted a link to an article of mine, linked my blog to one of your own, or re-tweeted (or shared) a link to my blog, thank you.

I went back over the past year's articles. I selected what could be considered my "greatest hits of 2012". Not all of these are based solely on hits on my blog. Some have been cross-posted to other sites or quoted. These are the ones I feel had the best impact, be it favorable or unfavorable. Not counted among these are my reviews of items such as Kurt's two books, both of which were rather popular articles of mine.

Without further ado, the beating will continue. Here are my picks for what I consider my ten "best" blogs for 2012. Please, in the comments, feel free to link other blogs, mine or others', you consider to be among your favorites for the year.

10. An Era of Indoctrination . This article is probably one of my better articles in support of school-choice and against the plague of socialist indoctrination that has infected public schools. It is also my top blog in the "Education and School Choice" category.

 9. The Left's 'Wars' on Everything. In this article I discussed the various distraction "war on" memes that the left employed, and how ridiculous their hypocrisy is.

8. Hey! Give Me My Cream Filling!  This was the first of several articles documenting and commenting on Hostess's battle with bankruptcy and the unions. For those unaware, Hostess ended up "going Galt" and folding. This article starts back when they first filed for bankruptcy for what would become their last time. 

7. Among my numerous Second Amendment related articles, Firearms Frenzy of 2012 discussed the surge of firearm sales not long after the mass shooting in Aurora, CO during a screening of the third Dark Knight movie. I also predicted future surges as the UN Small Arms Treaty and anticipated attempted gun-grabs coming from Obama towards the end of the year. Looking at current trends in firearms and ammunition sales, it looks as though I called it. This article tops my "Second Amendment" category for 2012.

6. In Oh Yes He Did, And He Supports Obama, I did double diligence in both supporting veterans' issues and exposing leftist hypocritical hatred as I discussed known communist Ted Turner's statements about veteran suicide.

5. Arizona Sheriff Larry Dever Dies Unexpectedly is the runner-up in my memorial category, topping non-military related memorial articles. Rest In Peace to Sheriff Larry Dever, who was my County Sheriff when I lived in Arizona.

4. Across the blogosphere there was a "day of silence" in response to "lawfare" tactics taken by the convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin and his cabal that includes Neal Rauhauser. My response was To Be Not Silent. While others took the day to not blog, I wrote. I not only refused to be quiet, I dared others to try to silence me. 

3. Unions Bite Hand that Feeds Cream Filling. I despise socialism in all its forms. Labor unions, especially so-called "public sector" unions are among the most vile examples of proletarian tyranny.  When reading Orwell's Animal Farm, these jackasses supported the pigs. In this article, I exposed how the pigs ate Hostess out of business.

2. Do I Owe You An Apology? was my response to the results of November's election. I discussed second guessing my efforts. This was probably my most influential political essay of 2012. Several fellow conservative bloggers lauded this one as a "must read". Take a few moments and make your own decision on that opinion.

1. On March 25, 2012 I wrote an essay for Medal of Honor day. The result was an essay on the effect two recipients of that highest recognition had upon my life an military career. Even from beyond the grave, they lead. Their story and the way they lived serves as one of the highest examples to be emulated. To date, and rightfully so, Honor, Valor, Fidelity, Sacrifice, SOLDIERs: Shugart & Gordon remains my most-read article. Please read this one, not for me, but for the great men and women who have served this great republic.

Other articles of note from the past year:

My most popular review this past year was of Schlichter II: I AM A LIBERAL.

My most influential, however, was co-written by my beloved wife, Melissa, Melissa's Musings: How to Kill 11 Million People. I discussed my wife's reaction to this book. Linked to it are her actual words. 

In the humor department, my most popular essay was We DO Need Parental Guidance Here (Part 1), in which I delivered Obama a long overdue scolding. 

The first runner-up in humor was my essay Evolving Definition of a Term ("Nutjob"). The article was mostly fiction, and labeled as such. It just may give you a much needed giggle or guffaw.