Open Thread

Just wanted to get some input from everyone on the coveritlive approach to the debates, while letting Mr. Patrice blog without comments. I spent much of the evening watching the Steelers shit the bed, but it looks like Mistermix and DougJ hit a home run with the way we approached things this evening. Have a live blog, while having a live chat to take the place of the comments. I was completely thrilled with the performance, and I want to thnk DougJ and Mistermix for doing this. Do you all feel the same way?

I’m going to just assume you all do, and if you don’t, I apologize in advance. But I am just sitting here laughing, because again, ten years ago, this was not in the plans. It was a vanity site, where I babbled about shit, and roughly three people a day read the site. One was mom, the other two were me refreshing the site.

I think the only thing I did that helped to grow the site was just to allow people to say whatever they wanted in the comments. That was kind of novel for political blogs. Even more novel was that most of the comments were flaming me for being a moron, and I let them.

At any rate, excuse me my moment of reflection- I just find it humorous. This website used to me babbling incoherently, and now it is 10-15 people babbling coherently, and I have front pagers who get so sick of my procrastinating bullshit that they introduce things like coveritlive and I just pay the bills. It’s just funny watching things evolve, and while things evolve, we’ve saved thousands of animals and you commenters have built real life relationships with each other. There are nights when I talk to DougJ and I realize it really is no longer my personal website. It’s ours.

It was never in the plans, but I will say this- at least I was smart enough to realize that I do not make the website work. You all do.


The Steelers suck, also too.

88 replies
  1. 1
    Matthew Reid Krell says:

    With this commentariat, I get very concerned whenever Cole gets sincere. Some asshat (possibly me) is going to be a snarky asshole because “how dare you make me feels.”

    Resist, asshole commenter! Resist!

    MRK +1 +sexytime

  2. 2
    freelancer says:


    Cole the coveritlive thing was great. The only negative, and there’s no way to get around this, so it’s just a comment on the experience, was that with 1200 people mashing their opinion into it, the commentary screamed by like a Star Wars intro text on Fast Forward.

    To Success!

  3. 3
    Richard says:

    Some current Yahoo “news” pieces, written by their own people…

    Team Romney: Biden was ‘off balance’ and ‘strange’

    The joke’s on us: how Joe Biden became America’s favorite punch line

    As slanted as anything you’ll find on Fox.

  4. 4
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Well. I’m not given to sentiment, but thanks for keeping it going. It’s a great blog, pretty much the only one I still comment on

    can I make a request that somebody front page Letterman’s top ten smackdown of Paul Ryan at some point tomorrow? It must be shared.

  5. 5
    Genine says:

    Awwwww…. :-)

  6. 6
    jwb says:

    @Richard: The GOP is out trolling even places like the Princeton Election Consortium tonight. They are actually quite good at this part of the game, and the left could really learn something about how to manage and modulate their media response much better.

  7. 7
    Comrade Mary says:


    Yes, Coveritlive was a great success (for me as a fast reader, maybe a little less so as a bad typist). But you go to chat with the server you have, not the server you want.

  8. 8
    freelancer says:


    Stay the fuck off memeorandum, it’s ridiculous right now.

  9. 9
    Petorado says:

    Worthy experiment. A whole bunch of informed eyes watching the stream, twitter, and other forums and reporting back is a whole lot better than watching other live feeds that scroll by at the speed of light.

    As far as the Stillers, you’re starting to sound like us looooong suffering Browns fans. But then again, you have yet to rename Three Rivers “the Factory of Sadness.” You’re just dealing with a span of mediocrity, but far from an eternity of it.

  10. 10
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    JC, you kept me sane in 2009 as the republicans extruded the tea party wing nuts on live tv, you kept me sane through the 2010 elections and you’ve kept me sane in 2012. Also: cute pet pix.

    I always recommend your blog to expats – lots of coverage but also perspective (unless it’s about the steelers or sully, then all bets are off).

  11. 11
    Waynski says:

    Maybe someone got this already, but Pierce says, “You know what’s the difference between Sarah Palin and Paul Ryan?

    Read more:

  12. 12
    Anne Laurie says:

    I really enjoyed Joe Patrice’s liveblog — if you (meaning, DougJ) need to bribe him to cover the upcoming debates, I’d absolutely chip in! And while I couldn’t keep up with the Coveritlive feed (while also reading Joe, and the Guardian liveblog, and oh yeah listening to the debate too also) I deeply appreciated not getting DATABASE ERROR for the entire two hours, so I’d chip in for that as well, if necessary.

  13. 13
    Hill Dweller says:

    @Richard: If the roles were reversed in the first debate, and Obama had done the exact same thing Romney did, they would have hammered him for interrupting and lying. The media is worthless on a good day, but there are a lot of very powerful people backing Willard, and I think they’re throwing their weight around behind the scenes.

    Any other politician would have been pummeled by the press if they’d shamelessly analogized a former SEAL’s bravery with their run for President, but Willard got a pass.

  14. 14
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Richard: I’m so glad we don’t get 5,700 commenters on the posts around here.

  15. 15
    Karmus says:

    Kudos to DougJ, mistermix, Mr. Patrice, and to you, John.

    I don’t know why it is that this has been my go-to blog for years. I first showed up when it was just John and Tim F. I like going way, way back into the archives, when this was (briefly, one of many) The Curmudgeon’s Corner, for giggles. I was on board when John made the official change to Democrat and finally Obot. Even though I rarely post and my lurking can be somewhat sporadic, I feel a bit of a connection here. I don’t really know anyone here and I haven’t made any personal connections, but that’s largely due to my being something of a misanthrope. Still, my world would not be quite the same without good ol’ BJ.

    I thought the whole setup tonight was top-notch. Really looking forward to the next debate more than ever now. Thanks, guys & gals.

    And: Joe Biden rocks.

  16. 16
    piratedan says:

    TY JC for the forum and the self education that I receive here. Also too for the forum to get my rant on.

  17. 17

    I have to thank you for writing that. This is really the only blog I read. I don’t bother with Daily Kos or TPM any longer, and four years ago, I read there all the time (and even wrote, now and then, on Daily Kos). But somehow, over the last three years, all the others kind of dropped off my list. The only one I would read is the Poorman, only he’s given up his blog, I guess.

    Anyway, I am thankful for all the work you put in here. I know it does take a lot of time. I know a lot of others feel the same way. I could never do this. I have severe ADD (the inattentive kind) and I would never get around to writing often enough, or consistently enough to get anybody to read it.

    And yeah, some of the commenters can be kind of irritating, and I put myself at the top of the list. And there are the few truly pathetic trolls who show up now and again. But I guess it would get a little too predictable around here if we never got on each other’s nerves.

    So, not to get too mawkish, but I feel like I’m part of something worthwhile here. Yes, it does sound a little cheesy, but it’s true. I’ve never met any of the writers or commenters firsthand, but I feel like I know some of them all the same. And I really did feel honored when Imaniput one of my rambling, over-the-top screeds on the front page once. That was cool. And of course, it’s great to see how we all chip in to help each other when a pet is in trouble. The things everybody wrote last week after Abby, my dog, died really did help me get through the first few days. It meant something knowing that people I’d never even met are thinking of me as I mourn.

    So, I guess I’ve embarrased everybody enough with my teary-eyed paean to Balloon Juice, and to tell you the truth, I’m wasting priceless sleeping time, since both children are asleep. I’m just so off my schedule that it’s hard to sleep when I have the chance sometimes.

  18. 18
    Spaghetti Lee says:


    Oh puh-leeze, don’t give JC more reason to feel sorry for himself. A 2-4 start to the season isn’t a span of mediocrity. It’s not even a spark of mediocrity. “Oh, we haven’t made a super bowl in 3 years, poor us!”

    Only thing worse than a self-pitying Steelers fan is a self-pitying Giants fan. I’ve met them! Two SB wins in 5 years is apparently not enough. Exactly how many were they hoping for?

    (At the risk of sounding too harsh: this is a great blog, even if I do sometimes get fed up with it (isn’t that half the fun, though?) And I still consider myself a relative newcomer-found it in Feb 2010 or so. It’s always one of the first I check each morning.)

  19. 19
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    I tuned in to watch a debate and instead saw a bulldozer push a steaming pile of bullshit all over the place.

    I enjoyed every single minute of it.

  20. 20
    Warren Terra says:

    Coveritlive worked pretty darn well. As others have noted, there were so many commenters that a lot of comments whizzed by before I could read them in real time (especially when I was trying to type on my iPad, so I had to watch my fingers and the keyboard took up half the screen).

    I wonder whether it might be worth having multiple coveritlive threads open simultaneously, so people can arbitrarily go into one or into another – just so that a thread might have 500 watchers/commenters, instead of 1500 watchers/commenters, and it might be possible to converse a bit more. The problem with that, though, is that then some of my favorite commenters would be commenting away, but in a different thread than the one I was reading … maybe multiple threads is not a solid idea. And the pace of the comments wasn’t (quite) overwhelming, at least this time – though I feel for whatever sap was approving the comments, and I don’t know what proportion they didn’t approve.

    PS I had to go back and figure out this whole “Joe Patrice” thing – he was logged in as DougJ, and his second, bigger post didn’t say he wasn’t DougJ.

  21. 21

    Let’s focus on the serious issue here. Why…why do the Steelers suck so bad :-(

  22. 22
    Hill Dweller says:

    @Waynski: Pierce is speaking the truth. Ryan is a fraud.

    Biden handily won that debate, but the Village will never admit it. They’re desperate to prevent any Obama/Biden momentum.

  23. 23
    anibundel says:

    @Comrade Mary:
    There are known posts, and there are unknown posts. There are known unknown posts and there are unknown known posts. What we should be worrying about are the unknown unknown posts. Also the cat blegs where no one takes the cat and I cry my eyes out because my heart breaks for the poor little kitty.

    That the Steelers suck was always a known known. Just sayin’.

  24. 24
    brashieel says:

    I started coming here sometime in 2008, as the healthcare “debate” was getting fired up. I… think I found it through an Oliver Willis link. After that, it very quickly became one of my mandatory daily reads.

    Between the pet rescue stuff, the periodic drunken rants, and the general free-for-all feel of the place, it just feels like my political home.

    That said, it still trips me out where “real” news organizations (particularly the international ones) mention this place.

    At any rate, thanks for everything, JC.

  25. 25
    slag says:

    It was good. I was pleased it was available! Nice job, folks.

  26. 26
    Yutsano says:

    I drifted over here from Swampland when Karen Tumulty hadn’t gone full villager yet and she threatened me once. It was my fault: I said a disparaging remark about the Longhorns. But this blog kept coming up in the comments, and I eventually wandered over late 2007 and lurked for quite a while. I’ve learned here, I’ve laughed here, I’ve cried here, and dare say I’ve made a few friends. Oh and a fake wife who makes life a fucking kick. Grazie Mille Signore Cole.

  27. 27
    nellcote says:

    It was never in the plans, but I will say this- at least I was smart enough to realize that I do not make the website work. You all do.

    Ripple in still water, dude.

  28. 28
    C.J. says:


    I second everything here. This place is the only political blog that has stayed on my bookmarks list, for a very good reason.

  29. 29
    Redshift says:

    Everything worked great tonight.

    Thanks for giving this community an environment to grow in, JC!

  30. 30
    cckids says:

    It is a great place, to drop in, to hang, to find a kindred spirit or pick an argument. Thanks, JC, you’ve done well.

    And for the open thread, CNN has a feature about the 25 Funniest Tweets about the VP Debate. My favorite?

    “Biden’s teeth are so white they’re voting for Romney”

  31. 31
    max says:

    I’m going to just assume you all do, and if you don’t, I apologize in advance.

    Naw. It was great. It seems to choke up a little bit, but it definitely beat the hell out of overloading the web site.

    and I just pay the bills.

    And thank you sir, for doing so.

    I think the only thing I did that helped to grow the site was just to allow people to say whatever they wanted in the comments. That was kind of novel for political blogs. Even more novel was that most of the comments were flaming me for being a moron, and I let them.

    That’s pretty much like (old) Usenet to my mind, and I like that way better than having to get an proctological exam every time I post. And afterwards too!

    The Steelers suck, also too.

    They’ll probably turn it around some over the rest of the season. It’s the Steelers after all. (On the other hand… Ravens!)

    Also, the Village thinks the Onion’s tales of Joe are terrible, because they’re so true and isn’t it shameful that Joe is SO MEAN?!! (Insert SQUEEEEEEEEEEE here). I, on the other hand, love this one from tonight because I like me some fightin’ D’s:

    DANVILLE, KY—In the middle of tonight’s debate between Joe Biden and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), Centre College security guards were forced to remove from the auditorium five of the vice president’s loud and unruly friends: Darius, Blaze, Tank, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Dozer. “My buddies tend to go a little wild during these things—what can I say?” a smiling Biden said as eight security guards hauled away the drunken roughhousers for loudly whistling whenever the vice president spoke, repeatedly catcalling debate moderator Martha Raddatz, and throwing beer cans at Ryan following his opening statement. “Thanks for coming out, fellas! I’ll meet you guys back at my suite for a smoke-out after. Take care of the pack, Blaze.” Minutes after she was ejected, a staggering, inebriated Pelosi rolled up her sleeves and told reporters she planned on waiting in the auditorium’s back alley to “have a little talk” with Paul Ryan after the debate.

    [‘So there’s an extra laugh for the evening.’]

  32. 32
    DPS says:

    Yes, both elements were very good.

    I think it was early 2008 when I started reading this, and I’ve only started commenting recently. I like that it’s chaotic and is a little fucked up but has a center. And it’s funny. It’s more appealing and natural to me, all things considered, than any other blog I read.

  33. 33
    Petorado says:

    @Spaghetti Lee: True. The Browns aspire to 2-4 greatness. Then we’ll start to trash talk about how Cole can buff our cars with his terrible towel. One day …

  34. 34
    DPS says:


    Yes, I want to second all of that.

  35. 35
    Arclite says:

    I appreciated the site being up and not timing out, as I was working and couldn’t watch the debate, and was able to check in several times.

    And Mr. Patrice’s live blog was excellent.

    I think I’ll have a beer now.

  36. 36
    freelancer says:


    I’ve learned here, I’ve laughed here, I’ve cried here, and dare say I’ve made a few friends.

    Same here, and you are allowed to dare.

  37. 37
    Arclite says:

    There are nights when I talk to DougJ and I realize it really is no longer my personal website. It’s ours.

    I guess there was some foresight there, naming it balloon-juice instead of

  38. 38
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    Totally OT: I am nearly done editing papers for a totally awesome book that I can’t wait to see in print. This is awesome guys!

  39. 39
    Arclite says:

    @Anatoliĭ Lъudьvigovich Bzyp (formerly Horrendo Slapp, Jimperson Zibb, Duncan Dönitz, Otto Graf von Pfmidtnöchtler-Pízsmőgy, Mumphrey, et al.):

    I have to thank you for writing that. This is really the only blog I read. I don’t bother with Daily Kos or TPM any longer, and four years ago, I read there all the time (and even wrote, now and then, on Daily Kos). But somehow, over the last three years, all the others kind of dropped off my list.

    Wow, I thought it was just me.

  40. 40
    Kingfish says:

    I can’t quit this blog, it’s the only one I read daily. I’m from the south … We’re not all neo confederates down here. Always read bj, but only 2nd time commenting. Proud of my president and Ashamed of the way he has been demonized. Nice to know there are kindred spirits here. Ok and who is the one who knows about dinky hockey shoots smack? Thanks cole & front pagers

  41. 41
    ulee says:

    Biden, with his killer grin, killed, and Ryan could only sit there and take it. Biden had to hold back and be polite to Palin and did so with good effect. With Ryan, he just laid him to waste through personality and truth. Ryan never had a chance.

  42. 42
    Lit3Bolt says:

    Awwww, John.

    We think you’re a shitty blogger too. lol

    Also, this is pretty much the only fun Manichean Monster blog I still read and post out. I occasionally post at Steve M’s fine blog, and Zandar and driftglass, and sometimes at OTB when I think Doug Mataconis needs a wedgie, but this is the blog that got me into this crazy political conspiracy theory world of CREAMy goodness.

    Also, too.

  43. 43
    g-rant says:

    I was/have been a lurker since you freaked out about the Terri Schiavo mess. I was pointed here by Atrios as someone on the right who was “sane”; I’ve stayed a lurker since. Your evolution in thinking paralleled mine, though I was couple of years ahead of you :) Keep up the good work!

  44. 44
    Kingfish says:

    White southerner here. Love bj and read it daily. Rebel flag offends me, love the president& know he’s the right man for the job. We’re not all neo confederates down here.

  45. 45
    Jewish Steel says:

    I spend enough time here you should charge me rent. It’s crazy that a thing like a website, populated with folks I have never seen nor heard, has sort of become part of the furniture of my life.

    Never saw that coming

  46. 46
    amk says:

    I come here mainly for the cole’s critters.

    And to take potshots at cole’s vista moment.

    And to read many humorous comments.

    And…. nah, that’s about it.

  47. 47
    dollared says:

    John, I come here for a few reasons, but the medium rare T-bone of BJ is still the John Cole They Are Fucking Morons Rant.

    I’m pretty sure that’s why sarcasm is the only currency here that matters.

    Keep ’em coming. And yes, you do give me one more reason to root against the Steelers. You’re even a bigger curmudgeon when they lose.

    How ’bout that Matt Hasselbeck?

  48. 48
    Darkrose says:

    I stumbled in here in 2006 linked from some blog I don’t read any more. This site has a permanent tab on Chrome and is one of the first things I check after my email. Also, too, Tunch.

    Biden killed in the debate. The Giants won the NLDS. I had sushi for dinner. I am content.

  49. 49
    Another Halocene Human says:

    I read that a study came out lately that said society would be better served by picking random people as leaders instead of trying to look for the often irrelevant or counterproductive qualities that we think constitute “leadership”.

    What you’re describing? That’s leadership, John. Pat yourself on the back.

    PS: Obama knows this. Listen carefully to his stump speeches. He says “we” and “you” a lot. You don’t hear “I” until the end.

  50. 50
    hamletta says:

    Took me 45 minutes to get home from work. Fuckin’ Titans.

    We’re having a robust thunderstorm, and Miss Sophia is looking at me like a crazy person. We’re so old, I remember when I could see her eyes glowing from the closet when there were fireworks within a 2-mile radius.

    I love my little buddy, and I love Old Handsome Joe Biden.

  51. 51
    Starfish says:

    @Arclite: I read several political blogs including TPM and Sullivan at some point, but this is the only one that I still manage to read.

    TPM eventually became just another mainstream media site, and I quit reading Sullivan after I realized how badly he behaved when it came to particular women in politics.

    Politics just seems so depressing sometimes. Balloon Juice adds a dose of humor to keep it all tolerable.

  52. 52
    M B says:

    I came here via a Krugman link to John Cole’s epic “the math demands it” rant on the Ryan budget.

    This site’s been bookmarked ever since, and I thought you guys did a fantastic job tonight. Almost Biden-level, even.

    Seriously, though, well done. Thanks for all you do.

  53. 53
    Fuck ALL the chickens! (né Studly Pantload, t.e.u.u.) says:

    Mr. Cole (can I call you Congressman Cole, or My Friend?), I recall knowing about this blog in its pro-Republican, pre-Schiavo days, and then eventually lefty bloggers linking to b-j as, “here’s some great common sense,” and my being confused because, hey, wasn’t this a righty blog? And, lo, there was indeed some great common-sense stuff, and one Saturday there was a great comments thread going about the best vacuum cleaners, and then I was , er, hooked.

    Anyhoo, you are among my very, very mostest fave poli-bloggers, crankiness and all. And tonight’s debate live-flame, or whatever it’s called, was a stark improvement over last week, and a tremendous statement on your part, even if you just stamped it, regarding your commitment to keep this blog fresh and vital. (As is your choice of front pagers.)


  54. 54
    Debbie(Aussie) says:

    Glad everything went so well for the debate and even better during the debate.
    I came after reccomends from daily dish. Seem like such a nice bunch of people. I have learnt heaps about the US. Makes me appreciate Aus more. Love all pet begs,pics etc
    I shall continue to read it all and comment occasionally.because as I see it; where the US goes we will invariably follow!

  55. 55
    wasabi gasp says:

    Other two nicknamed Lentil and Legume, maybe? I don’t know.

  56. 56
    mai naem says:

    Wow, I went back to DKos because I couldn’t remember when I started coming here. I guess it was the summer of 2009. I am kind of embarrassed looking at some of my comments on Kos. I was kinda sorta a firebagger. Oy vey. BTW, I haven’t logged into DKos for years and I have a 3 digit UID there and the only reason I don’t have a 2 digit UID is because I was a WATB who didn’t want to register because OMG!!! people would follow me on the intertubes. Gawd, I was dumb.

    Anyhoo, enough about me. Kos used to occasionally make comments about how you were one of the sane rw bloggers so I used to lurk a little after Schiavo but didn’t comment till 09. Let me express my compliment to you this way – I would have serious withdrawal symptoms if I couldn’t come here daily.

  57. 57
    WereBear says:

    I liked coveritlive, participated, good debate man in our corner.

    Ya just keep upgrading, John, we’re grateful.

  58. 58

    @Darkrose: Dissappointed Reds Fan here. Fell asleep before the debates, but woke up early and got a bit from YouTube. Ryan isn’t ready for drive time, let alone Prime Time.

    Found BJ through Daily Kos and got hooked about almost 3 years ago and fell in love with this site. BJ is what I want my 6 blogs to be when they finally grow up and when my ADD finally calms down.

  59. 59
    freelancer says:


    You’ve got a PM that has made world news, in the best way.

    And I love the Aussie slang “heaps”. I had an Australian Pen Pal growing up and she rode horses “heaps”, which in the US, we would say “a lot”, or “a ton”, or “frequently”. It tickles my funnybone.

  60. 60
    raven says:

    It was swell. I advice John to get Picture-in-Picture. There is no need to miss something like the debate when you can have it on the small picture and watch whatever game is on on the big one. You don’t really need the announcers who everyone seems to hate.

  61. 61
    Schlemizel says:

    Jesus John, the Stiller lose & you say kind words about the rabble that vexes your online domain? I don’t know what to say!

    I was figuring we were in for a real whoopin’ from you 8-{D

    Thanks for keeping the lights on for us, we appreciate you more than you assume.

  62. 62
    Baud says:

    Count me among the GOS alums who moved over to here, mostly because dkos between 2008-10 had become a cesspool. I actually think I discovered BJ because some commenter over there noted GOS had become a cesspool and BJ was much better.

  63. 63
    Schlemizel says:

    I’m amazed at the number of refugees fro Kos here. Thats where I first got linked in also. I don’t remember when that was but it was long before Shiavo. At the time I only stopped by once or twice & didn’t see why GOS would encourage people to come here. I am not much for comment threads as most are a cesspool even if they generally agree with my opinion (I often find myself yelling “GET OFF MY SIDE!”)

    Started actually reading comments here & it converted me just about the same time John converted. Those where some fun threads!

    I never have read the threads at Kos & maybe thats why I still look at it once a day. I have a regular routine that includes Bartcop, Tbogg, Sadly No, Skippy, Jack and Jill and about a dozen others. But this is the only place I regularly comment & actually read the threads – you people are the best, thanks to all of you.

    Particularly the concern and kindness shown when I was so sick, this really is a community of friends.

    The two best things besides just being here though, you introduced me to Scalzi & TNC. TNC is the smartest place on the web, making up for all the sins of the Atlantic. Its the other place I will comment on. A free online education about many topics with brilliant commenters that make me feel lucky to just be part of the conversation

  64. 64
    Brian says:

    John, we love you because your a moron, but honestly we only come back to make sure the animals haven’t killed you day to day.

    We worry.

  65. 65
    Joel says:

    John, about the Steelers:

    This is what it felt like to watch the 2008 Patriots. A team that had just been together too long, with a once-great defense that’s starting to look really old and slow, an evaporating running game, and the entire country rooting against you.

    At least your QB is healthy.

  66. 66
    HeartlandLiberal says:

    So, John, are you like, you know, saying “You didn’t build this”, or something like that?

  67. 67
    gogol's wife says:

    No time to read the comments, but I really enjoyed the format last night. It was great to see the comments popping up so fast, and the guy who was liveblogging up top was very good. I don’t exactly understand whether we’re allowed to comment — I thought it was going to be ten chosen commenters, but there seemed to be a lot more than ten, including someone named Perry Como whom I’ve never seen before. But I had no desire to comment, I just wanted to read what everyone was saying. I only watched 10 mins. of the debate but I feel as if I saw it!

  68. 68
    Hawes says:

    Shorter Cole: “I was born a small black child.”

  69. 69
    Luthe says:

    We love you too, Cole. Even when you call us stupid fuckers. Especially when you call us stupid fuckers.

  70. 70
    Ash Can says:

    Came here via a DKos link in about 2006, stayed for the curmudgeonliness and f-bombs and bar fights and Tunch and all the other pets. Not to mention the intelligent, irreverent, and just downright decent and good-hearted nature of the FP posts. John, thanks for letting us all come here and trash the joint.

  71. 71
    Violet says:

    Late to the comment, but I thoroughly enjoyed the debate on Coveritlive, so thanks for making that happen DougJ and mistermix. And thanks for paying the bills, John!

    I do not make the website work. You all do.

    We are the ones we have been waiting for!

  72. 72
    Original Lee says:

    I loved the live blog with comments! I had it open on my laptop while sitting next to my son on the couch, watching the debate. He had to watch the debate as his homework, and was taking notes. It was very interesting to him that he could tell when Ryan was hitting prepared comments (tone of voice, demeanor, etc.) and that some of the things he saw as significant the grownups on BJ also noticed. So, yay! It was fun and educational.

  73. 73
    Lee says:

    That was kind of novel for political blogs.

    Small quibble. I’ve been reading political blogs for longer than your blog has been around.

    It was novel for Republican blogs.

  74. 74
    Original Lee says:

    @Fuck ALL the chickens! (né Studly Pantload, t.e.u.u.): I started reading this blog about six months before the Terri Schiavo mess. I don’t remember off-hand how I found it, but back then I read about 10 political blogs, and this one is the only one I still read regularly. Thank you, John, for making this place possible.

  75. 75
    Niques says:

    Late to the thread, but I just have to chime in . . . I discovered BJ from a link at Crooks and Liars sometime toward the end of Shrub’s 2nd term. You all helped me cope with the anxiety of “WTF is he going to do next? Won’t this nightmare ever end?” (Years 7 and 8 were the longest I’ve ever endured.)

    BJ has become my daily go-to site — nothing happens in politics that isn’t addressed here, and I always find a comment or two that mirrors my feelings exactly. You all are glib, articulate, intelligent (in a world of incredible stupid), and deliciously funny.

    Thank you, John. Balloon Juice has kept me sane.

  76. 76
    flukebucket says:

    I have been coming here since August of 2004. A friend of mine told me that Cole was one of the few sane conservatives out there so I started reading then and have come to this place at least one time every day I have had computer access since.

    I always like to see if Cole is in a manic phase and blasting out hilarious flight of idea posts that are as funny as hell and dead on target.

    Anytime you note that Cole has not been sleeping very well you know the fun is about to begin!

    And I miss PPGAZ also, too.

  77. 77
    Ken says:

    John, the livechat was a success, IMO. I think it’s a great forum and your time did a helluva job.

    At some point, you should work in Biden’s “Jack Kennedy” line as a meme.

    This is one of three political blogs I go to regularly; whatever the BJ community is doing, it’s doing it right.

    Finally, as a Browns fan, you don’t know ‘suck’. Please stick to the topics where you have some knowledge..

  78. 78
    gogol's wife says:

    Since I didn’t read the comments before I commented, I didn’t realize it was a sentimental thank-you-John-Cole thread. So thank you, John Cole. My husband thanks you, because there’s only so much election anxiety that he can absorb. And I can’t completely condemn Andrew Sullivan, because it was through him that I found Balloon Juice, when he linked to an incredible video of a guy singing his puppies to sleep.

  79. 79
    Mousebumples says:

    I also found BJ via Sullivan – late 2007/early 2008. And I don’t read Sullivan anymore, so this is the only political blog I read _regularly_. (Unless: does 538 count?)

    Anyhow, one suggestion I might make is to have a _separate_ CoverItLive for Joe’s political “stuff.” I got home late and only caught the last 30 minutes or so of the debate, so I was mostly reading what Joe had written and refreshing the page every 5 minutes or so, to see the updates.

    Right now, I’m making my way through the biiiiiig CoverItLive post/thread – to see what I all missed – but LiveBlogs sorta require refreshing to see the updates. I didn’t want to kill the server … but I also wanted to see what he was thinking as the debate continued.

    On an NFL note, I think the Packers are in the same boat as your Steelers. I’m hoping to be wrong, but I’m afraid that we’re looking at being 2-4 after this weekend’s contest after the Texans. :-\

  80. 80
    Maude says:

    What is this? Be nice to John day?
    The rotaters are off.
    I followed places like Bloomberg on Twitter and it was interesting. They know what the numbers mean.

  81. 81
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I thought the concept of creating a separate place away from the site for a select group of people – a tiny percentage of Balloon Juice commenters – to engage in an activity that most of us have been doing here for years was atrocious and antithetical to everything you claim to have been working towards lo these many years.

    The allure of Balloon Juice isn’t DougJ’s latest vacuous thought about this or that- most particularly his deepless insights into the debate. The allure of Balloon Juice is the crowdsourcing of snark and the chance for everyone to have a chance to be heard.

    Your apology is accepted.

  82. 82
    burnspbesq says:

    Shame about the Steelers.

    Tons of important football today: a full slate of World Cup qualifiers around the world, including a must-win for the US at Antigua & Barbuda.

  83. 83
    Trinity says:

    Moar Tunch.

    That is all.

    kthanxbai! (Love you Cole. This place is my online home.)

  84. 84
    dollared says:

    @burnspbesq: Good point. I will need to find a TV and a treadmill at the appropriate time.

    They’d better not screw it up.

  85. 85
    dance around in your bones says:

    I liked the coveritlive thingamajoo, but found it moved muy rapido for livetime coverage. I guess there is some value in the exhaustion of the hamsters on the regular BJ?

    Also I found that my first one or two comments got through, but after that – zippo. No idea why. I guess I’m not worthy.

  86. 86
    WaterGirl says:

    I can’t help it – whenever I see CoveritLive I get this image of Bill O’Reilly humiliating himself on-camera screaming “Fuck It – We’ll Do it Live!”. Which I consider a happy bonus!

    I am a fast reader, so I was able to watch the debate and keep up with the comments that were flying by, but that never would have worked if I had tried to comment. I was really happy just to be able to read everybody else and not get the dreaded DATABASE SAYS FUCK YOU error.

    @dance around in your bones: I noticed several comments from you. (at least I thought I did!) So maybe some of them got approved way late and you thought they never showed up at all?

  87. 87
    tams says:

    oh john cole… i love it when you’re all sweet like this. i read this and said out loud, in my office, ‘oh john cole that’s sweet!!!’ proud of you and all your blogging friends!

  88. 88
    Gretchen D says:

    It’s the snark! And the wide-ranging grasp of politics. And the pets, of course, too. My first and most favorite blog (I’m old and my daughter told me about blogs). Also, being sort of nuts, I check out The Blogess pretty frequently (not political – just weird and funny). My thanks to you all.

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